What Use Humans?

In a world With Ultra Smart AI Based Bots, Are Humans Useful?

Not a day goes by that there isn’t yet another story discussing how an AI has bested a human in something – typically a game, which we all know are microcosms of the real world.

First chess, then Go a few months ago. Now the AI developers have set their sights on MMORPGs like World of Warcraft, with much more complex rules engines. Just the other day, a bot from OpenAI bested the best players in Dota 2, a multiplayer online battle area, where players, team up in teams of 5 to destroy the other teams Ancient (the center of the enemy base), a loose tower defense game – a bit like capture the flag. read more

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Time: The Real Final Frontier

Space is not the Final Frontier. It’s Time.

It’s come to my attention that there is something wrong with time.

We are obsessed with it – with being more productive – with being more mindful – with keeping time, killing time, and wasting time. read more

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The Future of Shopping: Are you Ready for Conversational Commerce?

Welcome to the Future of Shopping. Are you Ready For It?

Lately, we’ve looked out at the near future and determined that there are several huge sociological, economic and technological shifts which are occurring in the world which are starting to affect our customers almost immediately. To that end, we have developed a set of strategies and technologies which our customers can implement today, to be prepared for tomorrow. read more

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People drive progress and disruption, not technology

How Do You Progress? Keep Moving Forward, No Matter What

Recently, we’ve been running several foresight exercises to consider the future of certain technologies more than 10 years out and I must say that it is a very interesting, and in my opinion, optimistic future that we are seeing. We are seeing a future where technology can literally do what it has not been able to do very easily over the last number of years, and that is, make us into better humans. read more

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Connecting: The Key To Your Next Billion Dollar Business

What Do These Billion Dollar Businesses Have In Common?

What do all of these companies have in common?

Here are some things that have been said, while correct, they are not the essence of what makes these companies so valuable and so disruptive. For one, whichever service they offer, whether its transportation, housing, groceries, crafts, goods or space, no matter what it is that is being offered, none of it is ever “owned” by the company. Taxi drivers and car rental fleets own their cars, Hotels own their properties, grocery stores own their groceries, (albeit briefly), craft stores own their inventory, and leasers of office space own their space. So you might be forgiven if you said “they don’t own their inventory” read more

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In The Future, We Will All Be Rich Enough Not To Waste Time

Soon, We Can Choose Not To Waste Time

One of my favorite movies of all time, Wall Street, (don’t hate me) depicted a tough talking, ultra-rich stock trader (Gordon Gekko) who was being pursued by a young stockbroker (Bud Fox) as a customer. Bud would cold call Gekko day-after-day, until one day, on his birthday, he presented him with a box of his favorite cigars, smuggled in by his dad’s company (an airline) from Cuba. That bought him 5 minutes of time with Gekko – who was sufficiently impressed with Bud to take him on as a protege. read more

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The Next Hot Space: Chat Bots and Conversational Interfaces

The rise of the Smart (and not so smart) Chat Bots.

I’ve talked at length before about the Seamless World, wherein some not too distant future, big data, the internet of things, predictive analytics and automation will all come together to create a world without interfaces, where everything we need to happen in our lives simply happens, without our ongoing involvement. We go from fighting with our technology to get it to do what we want, to it finally relieving us of our day-to-day simple burdens and finally allowing technology to be an aide and guide to humankind, instead of enslaving us. read more

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Hyperpersonalization Hits Home

Hyperpersonalization Creates Bubbles Of One

A while back, I wrote a post on hyperpersonalization impeding innovation – which discussed how keeping people in their little cocoons by surrounding them with a completely personalized experience to themselves will hamper innovation. I mentioned that in a world where everything is personalized to your needs, how can you come across moments of serendipity which can lead to new ideas and innovation? read more

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Startups, Innovation and The Future

Thinking About the Future Leads To Startups and Innovation

We get this question a lot – why do you focus on these three things on your blog? Well, if you ask me, innovation is all about attempting to predict the future – looking at the market, at trends, both mega and micro, and coming up with high level scenarios to determine the state of the world, the market and the company itself in that future. We look at startups because typically they have a lot to teach these enterprises: speed of development, innovative ideas, new technologies, etc. – we look at these startups not only as possible acquisition targets (although personally I prefer innovating from within, I understand a balanced innovation program of both internal innovation and external innovation – or even tapping into open innovation, is probably the best solution) we also look at their business models to determine if any of it can be applied within the organization. For example, are there places within the organization which could be better served with a more of a Lean Startup model, or some of its elements? Would we be able to bring more innovation into a specific process by introducing more of an agile methodology into the process? read more

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Lunch In A Seamless World

A Seamless Lunch

A colleague and I walked over to a certain Asian fast food restaurant the other day. The line was long, full of people still trying to decide what to eat from the steam table when they finally got to the counter, someone behind the counter had to replenish the white rice, and then the orders were stacked up at the cashier. Eventually, we sat and ate, but the waiting ate up most of the time we had. Made me think of what lunch would be like in a seamless world read more

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