I love learning about space, so I really enjoyed this post. While I understand the need for NASA to keep certain problems secret for national security reasons perhaps, a lot of NASA’s research could easily be outsourced to brilliant minds willing to conduct R&D at much lower prices than NASA could achieve in-house. I understand why existing employees at NASA might feel threatened, and adopting open innovation to a greater extent will likely lead to fewer R&D jobs available at NASA, but as was mentioned in this post, a new type of job, that of a “solution seeker,” might be created in the process. At the end of the day, if opening itself up to open innovation results in the ability to take on more moon-shot projects and succeed, I would think this would be a no-brainer for the space program. (Especially in a time where science sees dwindling government funding!!)
I really enjoyed this post as I had no clue Adidas was 3D printing shoes before reading this! I think Adidas partnership with Carbon is very forward-looking, and I’m impressed with their ability to secure exclusivity in the use of these machines within the sportswear space. I’d be interested to learn more about what competitors to Carbon exist and if they have developed partnerships with rival brands like Nike, or if Nike plans to bring its 3D printing capabilities (assuming it is also pursuing additive manufacturing) in-house. I also think your questions about price are spot-on. While the use of additive manufacturing in the production process will likely speed up the process and make it more efficient and thus less costly, I would assume in the near-term at least, Adidas will charge more for customized shoes, so it will be interesting to see if they change their target market for their 3D printed products.
I really enjoyed reading this post, especially because I have seen the video of the Developer Conference where Google showed off Duplex. I thought the questions you raised were really thoughtful, and I appreciated your concern regarding privacy laws and other potential regulatory concerns. One topic which you did not touch upon which I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on would be the creation and proliferation of chat bot assistants across all companies or perhaps across all humans. This would mean that humans might one day not have to interact with a bot or with another human at all for these kinds of scheduling needs; perhaps the bots will just talk among themselves! In this case, natural language processing might not even be that important as it is likely these bots will develop their own languages to communicate with each other.
I really enjoyed this post on additive manufacturing in the consumer retail space. I was particularly impressed on how you tied in some lessons we’ve learned from Marketing at the end of your essay, as Operations does not operate in a vacuum and if certain operational changes are made, marketing efforts may have to be adjusted as a result. I also appreciated your suggestions with regards to how to employ 3D printing tech, first by partnering with a 3D company and next by perhaps bringing these capabilities in-house. It will be interesting to watch the space to see which approach is preferred by various firms and for what reasons.
I thought this was a fascinating post on the use of machine learning in banking. I was reminded of our FRC case on Handelsbanken, which makes lending decisions based off a holistic picture of the borrower and differs from the U.S. market which is largely reliant on credit scores. If U.S. regulations allow for the inclusion of ML in lending decisions, Capital One seems well positioned to take advantage of this. I thought your question about bias was particularly relevant given that using past lending decisions as training data might be risky due to biases within the data both in terms of who applies for and who ultimately receives a loan. Beyond hiring data ethicists, what else do you think Capital One could do to work on bias elimination?
I really enjoyed this post, given that I would not have considered LEGO ripe for open innovation before reading this. I am impressed by LEGO’s decisions to open up innovation to customers, particularly kids, and I think the “LEGO Ideas” and “LEGO Ambassadors” programs were perfect conduits for doing this. I definitely think LEGO should pursue LEGO Boost to capitalize on the shift to digital in a way that remains true to the brand. I would not worry as much about cybersecurity risks or about where knowledge resides, because at the end of the day, the toy blocks themselves are simple products anyone can imitate. I would assume LEGO derives most of its value instead from releasing sets relevant to popular culture at a given time.