Every week I email out a newsletter named "Life and Tech." You can subscribe here: http://eepurl.com/bjalx5 This one was sent out on June 4th.
I just got back from spending two days with Innovation Endeavors at its “Curiosity Camp” in the middle of the redwoods near Santa Cruz.
Rackspace sends me to stuff like this so that I can find new ways of doing business and bring those insights back to the company. This is Eric Schmidt’s VC firm. They are investing in innovations that are changing our world in a range of things from bio medicine, to agriculture, to machine learning.
One commonality behind everyone I met is that they don’t accept that we have to look at the world the same way that we used to. Thanks to technology, many are rethinking, well, everything about their industries. Farmers are planning on a world where they will have 50 sensors per acre of land. I heard at camp that today most farms don’t have any sensors at all. DuPont is planning on radically changing that over the next decade. Cloud computing, synthetic biology, machine learning and other technologies are shifting how we can look at the world in a big way, in industries that you might not think of.
Just look at the people I’ve met in the past week and how they are looking at their industries differently thanks to a variety of technologies:
Alexander Green of Sugar Cubes: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153324143764655/ He wanted to make a new kind of light display for nightclubs and music festivals. Built his own cubes, added LEDs, and a ton of programming and the result is beautiful. I’ve never seen anything like it.
…or there is Des Power of Harman: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153317073444655 He runs a billion-dollar business selling speakers and home entertainment products with names like JBL on them. Brought 50 designers to Shenzhen, China, and started winning design awards, not to mention seeing increased sales. Why? Because innovation is about rapid iteration, and locating designers near the factories of Shenzhen shortened the time to get a new product out the door. They now do it in 22 weeks from start to finish.
Asher Levine is one of the top fashion designers in the world. You’ve seen his work on Beyonce, Wil.i.am and many other celebrities. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10153324112029655&set=a.458123019654.251938.501319654&type=1 How does he look at the world differently? His mom taught him how to sew when he was six and now he stitches LEDs, sensors, and other technology into clothing for performers.
Anthony Sabbadini, founder of SCTracker, thought there was a new way to “see” supply chains. So, he built this, which shows where products are being built in real time thanks to GPS: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153311873299655/
Janna Bastow, cofounder/CEO of Product Pad, knew there was a better way to track ideas. Her tool lets you prioritize ideas and track them from start to finish.
Ash Eldritch, cofounder and CTO at Vital Medicals knew that wearable computers would change how surgery is done. His system lets doctors and surgeons see information right on top of their real-life patients – just picture that for a second –which gives them fewer distractions and helps them perform surgery in huge new ways. https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/vb.501319654/10153330329514655 Next Tuesday ODG (the glasses they use) will announce new versions that will help architects and others see the world in new ways too.
Yair Bar-on, founder of TestFairy, knew that developers needed to “see” the feedback from their beta testers in a new way. https://www.facebook.com/yairbaron/posts/10153402041011514 How? Apps delivered to beta testers (not for production) record their users so that developers can do things like go back and learn what part of the app they were using when a crash happened, or look at how a user got stuck, or examine why something didn’t display properly.
SpaceKnow lets you see satellite imagery in a new way. https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/posts/10153330473834655 This impacts governments and companies that want to watch specific places on the earth for, say, economic data.
Richard Titus knew there was a new way to do scheduling and payments for small small time-based businesses, so invented Prompt.ly: https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153326438509655/
Yosi Taguri hated how his phone worked, so invented Yallo, which changes the dialer on Android and adds a ton of useful features, including new ways to see people calling you. https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153308227484655/
Ben Larralde wanted to have a different community for Internet of Things, so he developed Hackster. https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153311567299655/
Pat White, CEO of Sonata, thinks Enterprise Search needed a fresh approach. https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble/videos/10153311545314655/ Cloud technology and machine learning let him look at the problem in a new way.
Can everything be reimaged thanks to technology? I believe so. Even Johnnie Walker whisky is now using IoT technology: http://www.cio.com/article/2926218/innovation/why-johnnie-walker-joined-the-internet-of-things.html
This is just the beginning. Based on what I saw at Curiosity Camp, there’s no sign of this rapid innovation slowing any time soon!
How are you using technology to reimagine your world? Let me know!
I read all my email at firstname.lastname@example.org and anything done in response to this newsletter goes to the top of my inbox. I’m also at +1-425-205-1921 or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/RobertScoble. Please let me know how I, or Rackspace, the leading managed cloud company, can be of service to you. Thanks too to Hugh Macleod and team for helping me do art each week for this. We love his work!
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