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Disruptive Technology (Essay Sample)




Disruptive Technology.
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Disruptive technology is a phenomenon whereby an innovation changes the way an existing market or sector operates. The innovation creates a new market and value network, thereby disrupting a current market and value network. There must be an existing condition that loses meaning or receives critical improvements. Technology always evolves. Each day some changes happen in the technological world. Some decades ago, communication was a long process. Transport was also a complex process. Over time there came new developments that made the processes simpler and, most importantly, quicker. In this paper, I’m going to analyze how transport changed due to the invention of aircraft.
In the past, precisely the late 19th-century transport was mostly on roads or water. Long-distance travel involved water transport where ships and other water vessels were used. If you wanted to travel from the U.S. to Europe, the available form of transportation was waterways. It was also convenient to haul luggage and a large number of people. It is why it was the most used form of transport during the colonization and slave trade era. Movement between continents was limited to water transport and could take weeks, if not months, for travelers to arrive at destinations.
One of the most remarkable inventions in history is flights. It was pioneered by the Wright brothers, Orville and Wilbur, in the late 19th century. This milestone set the world a new course regarding long-distance traveling (Swan, 2002). Moving from one continent to another could take more extended periods, especially when using ships. It now takes a shorter period making the world a global village. The invention has changed the way of moving from one place to another. Imagine a world without air transport, how could it be? Take into account the services attached to air transport.
Before the Wright brothers made the first successful aircraft flight in 1903, there were inventions and developments to try air transport but had failed. They could not make it over long distances. Earlier inventors who wanted to find a way to make air transport possible had challenges with speed, maneuverability, and propulsion. The Wright brothers made it possible by coming up with a three-axis control that could sustain a flight. The invention was perfectly timed, especially when the world was staring at a war. With more improvements to the machines, they were used in World War 1. They proved vital for artillery spotting, reconnaissance, tracking, and attacks against ground positions.
Water transport used to be the most reliable long-distance travel. It could take some considerable time to travel from one point of the globe to another. Traders used to avoid perishable goods since they could not make quick deliveries. Things took a new twist from 1903. After lengthy research and efforts, the Wright brothers were able to fly in a heavier-than-air machine. Initially, air movement was limited to balloons and gliders (Swan, 2002). The two could not facilitate long-distance travel and haul luggage. They were purely for exploration in short distances.
In the early 1930s, the aircrafts received innovations to make them manage large scale commercial travels. Airlines started to attract customers due to its fast advantage that gave it an edge over others. Aircraft designers and engineers took the challenge and incorporated many changes to the aircraft. Things took a new twist when they were able to replace water-cooled engines with air-cooled engines. It made the planes lighter thus faster. It also meant the aircraft designers could now develop large airplanes with weight as the least worries.
The first passenger airliner was unveiled in 1933. It was the Boeing 247. Due to the changes it received, the aircraft was now faster and lighter. It could travel at a speed of 155 miles per hour and had a seating capacity of 10 passengers. It also received changes in the cabin. It was insulated to reduce the engine levels in the plane. Passengers could now enjoy comfort on upholstered seats and the availability of a water heater. It went down the history books by being the first plane to travel at such speeds with its 10-passenger capacity. It also incorporated changes in the variable pitch propellers reducing take-off distances, increasing the climb, and improved speeds.
As time moved, the aircraft designers decided to improve the Boeing 247. They came up with a machine called DC-1. It was based on the Boeing 247 platform though it received a lot of improvements. Notable changes included more carrying capacity as it could haul two more passengers. It also received a more powerful engine. In the interior, the DC1 avoided metal spars skeletons. It made it roomier than the Boeing 247. Other changes included efficient wing flaps and an automated pilot assistance system (Swan, 2002). It, however, did not gain mileage in the industry. The developers decided to change the design and build bigger versions.
The aircraft developers wanted something that could thrive in the air transport business. It means they needed a bigger plane in terms of seating capacity. They developed the DC-3. They had developed a DC-2, but it still failed to meet their expectations. The DC-2 was expensive to maintain hence not viable for business due to its small capacity. The DC-3 had a seating capacity of 21 people. It was built from aluminum alloy, thus stronger and safer than its predecessors. It also received more powerful engines that could see it travel between coasts in around 16 hours. This was a significant development since it took ships around a week to achieve the same fate. It also improved comfort by featuring noise-deadening plastic insulation to curb noise from disturbing passengers. It attracted many new travelers.
The planes were, however, challenged by one shortcoming. Their designs could not allow them to travel higher than 10000 feet. At higher altitudes, reduced oxygen levels made people dizzy, with some even fainting. The developers had to overcome this shortcoming. They needed a plane that could fly at higher altitudes to counter air turbulence and storms common at lower altitudes (Swan, 2002). They had to sort this because it started pushing away many airline passengers. They found a solution by introducing a pressurized aircraft. Air could be pumped into the plane as it flew higher to maintain similar atmospheric pressure in the plane as the surrounding. The plane, Stratoliner, also improved on seating capacity by being able to fly 33 passengers at speeds of about 200 miles per hour.
Air transport has changed how a lot of things happen. Labor, business, health, education, and security are all dependent on air transport. Before air transport went, commercial business deals could take long before actualized. Take an example of someone trading gold between New York and London. The expensive metal could be transported by water over a considerable period. Upon reaching either destination, many factors could affect the business due to the delay in transport. Prices could fluctuate. Buyers and sellers could change minds. In some cases, the trader would be forced to take lower prices since canceling the deal could be uneconomical, bearing in mind he had paid for the ship transport. Water transport was also unsafe. Attacks from pirates could see business people lose their valued property to gunmen from other water vessels. Air transport came as a life-saver for such traders. It could take a short time and prove safer from attacks associated with ships.
The health sector also received a big boost from air transport. In the earlier days before the development of airlines, doctors, health care workers, and patients were stationary at specific places. One could get treatment at designated centers. Referral options were minimal due to the lack of a quick transport mode (Swan, 2002). Once a problem was beyond or unmanageable by a local physician, no solution could help, mostly if it was an emergency. The advent of planes made doctors mobile. Patients can travel beyond the local centers if in need of specialized treatment. Doctors can move between states quickly to handle emergency cases. Workers in different sectors could also move between places rapidly. Security received a boost in the development of air transport. It made surveillance simpler. It was easier to monitor borders and if a prompt response could be availed in case of attacks.
Air transport innovation affected the way of living for many people. They could now go out and work away from their close families. Married couples could work miles away and meet over the weekend thanks to the now faster airlines. In earlier times before the development of air transport, it was a Herculean task to meet families frequently. Workers at distant places could take a while before rejoining with their loved ones. Many people preferred workplaces near their families. With the development of air transport, working miles away from family and meeting on weekends was now a possibility (Mallikarijun, 2015). Save for higher ticket costs than other modes; it was quicker and reliable due to its strict working schedule. In earlier times (Before 1940), if working away from home, one could travel days earlier to meet timelines at work. Air transport made work easier. If working 1000 miles away from home, you can still travel some six hours to work and check-in time.
Technology in air transport changed almost everything in global business. It also improved communication. It altered the way business activities and government functions run. Government officials could move from place to place quickly and execute their duties. World leaders can...

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