The Science and Technology Research Council (STTRC) estimate that in the coming decade there will be a one billion dollar market for quantum computing. This is a fivefold increase over the last five years alone. Industries such as biotechnology, engineering, and healthcare are investing heavily in this technology. This has resulted in job openings at research and development agencies all around the world. It is also resulting in a sharp reduction of costs for businesses who rely heavily on computers and other information technology.
Two industries are particularly well suited to the need to make research and development centers more effective. Biomedical firms rely heavily on genetic science, and with the help of new technologies that can speed up and streamline existing tests, the research and development process can be completed much faster. Pharmaceutical firms use DNA analysis and other genetic approaches to create drugs that attack specific diseases. nanotechnology and synthetic biology firms use these methods to create new materials, devices, and processes. All companies involved in this industry should be well funded in order to keep up with advances in technology.
There are other industries that benefit from research and development. There are two kinds of organizations: those that do it for profit and those that do it for the public good. Those that profit are those who create the product or service for which they are paid, while those who provide a public service benefit are not profit-makers but must compensate for the services they perform. Both types of organizations can invest in research and development. A research organization may fund research and development in areas unrelated to their core business. A company may invest in a nonprofit organization doing research and development work that could benefit the company.
In the area of public service, companies must be careful not to become overtly political. The invention of a new technology could require the creation of a new political body or legislation. If the public’s trust is lost in some way, then the technology never really gained traction. It is for these reasons that most companies invest heavily in the research and development of new technologies.
Some companies also invest in technology that will compete directly with them. Microsoft, for example, has created its own operating system based on Unix, a free software that many people believe to be superior to Windows. Similarly, Sun Microsystems has created a highly efficient programming language called Open Source. These technologies provide an opportunity for a company to develop in a direction that no competing company has ever dreamed of.
One thing that all businesses have in common is that all want to have a larger market. Competition can help a company expand its market share. Companies with smaller markets are also trying to increase their market penetration. With technology like Open Source and other free software, this is possible. It is part of a company’s responsibility to contribute to the betterment of society in general.