I like to think I am one of the few writers covering financial planning who can actually see the future. This is a great advantage when predicting trends and issues, but it can be a real hassle when people ask me for next week's stock tables.

My vision for the months and years to come tells me that a number of well-funded, low-cost online portfolio management services - what many in our industry dismissively call "robo advisors" - are going to disrupt the lives of planners who have the grave disadvantage of being made out of flesh and blood. Before long, online asset management firms like Wealthfront and Betterment are going to pour their venture capital dollars into widespread advertising campaigns.

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