The correctional facility issues being addressed in your blog are very important and effect everyone, but often go unaddressed. Thank you for shining light on a major issue. These unique applications of technology are a step in the right direction for solving the problem of delivering cost effective and efficient rehabilitation to inmates within the correctional system. The utilization of technology to deliver educational curriculum is a progressive industry currently taking shape. It is not only a major opportunity in the prison system; with rising cost of education in general, the opportunity to perfect this system can be monetized and extended to everyone. Using this technology in the prison system while proving and refining its capability is a win-win for everyone; the taxpayer, the government, and most importantly, the inmates.
This was a great example of advancements in an industry many of us interact with fairly often. I have personally seen major improvements with the major airlines, especially from the customer-facing innovation as mentioned in the blog. With all of the recent advancements we have already seen there is still a large area of opportunity to continue improving. How great would it be if we could track our checked bags throughout transit rather than hope it shows up on the other side with only a printed baggage check ticket in our hand for encouragement and defense against lost luggage? This blog also proves how dependent on technology airlines have become and leads to the concerns of when technology fails. For example, this past summer, when the entire Southwest computer system glitched leading to delays and cancelations for extended periods of time for thousands of passengers and cost Southwest millions of dollars.
 “Hundreds of Southwest flights still delayed or canceled after computer glitch,” (July 21, 2016) Chicago Tribune website, http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-southwest-airlines-outage-delays-20160720-story, accessed November 2016
Although I have no children of my own and therefore not on the market for such products, I thought the advancements in this industry were very cool to learn about. It seems like main players in the industry have been lacking innovation for quite some time. Given that parents are still sticking formula filled bottles in the microwave and testing the temperature on their arms, technology has a true opportunity to enable parents in many facets. I wonder if this lack of advancement is an oversight or actually being done by design. As with most technology, manufacturers typically rely on younger demographics, such as millennials, to be the early adopters for new technology. With the average age of first time mothers progressively rising in the United States to around 26 years of age, these more tech savvy demographics are yet to enter the market of parenting products. Could these companies be positioning and poising their technology to hit the market when their target demographics and low bar early adopters become the same person?
 “Average Age of First-Time Moms Keeps Climbing in the U.S.” (January 14, 2016) Public Health – NPR website, http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots, accessed November 2016.
Interesting blog! I have often wondered how these seemingly disruptive real estate ventures have been impacting the industry. Specifically, what real estate agent/broker value add still exists to warrant a 6% fee? If I am able to see recent comps, property statistics, and virtual tours online for free, what is my 6% getting me? I imagine the only thing left is playing the role of a middleman in negotiations and the physical presence of showing potential buyers properties by providing access to the listed property. Concerning their role in negotiations, I believe their incentives are completely misaligned because they undoubtedly earn more money on a higher transaction cost and selling price in favor of the seller. As far as the physical access to view the property, I believe this act to be completely necessary. Even with the advancements of virtual touring, I am uncertain of a potential buyer’s willingness to pay without first visiting the actual property. So does the act of unlocking and locking a house warrant 6% payment of typically already high numbers? Or, should their cut be adjusted to reflect their remaining value add?
Thank you for outlining the benefits of pen and paper! Who knew?!
More seriously, I agree, the recent advancements with this mimicking technology have risen the bar for the industry as a whole. The era of poor signature readers at the grocery store checkout is soon to pass as the current technologies provide near perfect accuracy and effectiveness in comparison to their historic counterparts.
To play the devil’s advocate, do you believe the adoption of these new technologies really present the end to the age old pen and paper industry? Does a company like BIC, with a third of revenues coming from stationary products, see these advancements as cannibalizing an industry as their revenues continue to rise year on year? Or do they assume there is room for both high tech and low tech note takers? The high tech options come with astronomically high tech costs in comparison to a virtually “free” pen. I undoubtedly believe the technology enabled options will be adopted at a higher rate moving forward in the education and corporate spheres, but I am hesitant the everyday note jotter will be so willing to trade up.
 “Key Figures – Net Sales Evolution,” Finance – BIC website, http://www.bicworld.com/en/finance/net-sales, accessed November 2016.
This was most definitely an interesting perspective to read. It raises a very relevant and important issue all too often overlooked in the Climate Change discussion. The roadmap to sustainability is not so seamless. It would be impossible to turn off the faucet overnight of the necessary inputs required for these “more sustainable” solutions. It is a unique perspective to have; it is rarely recognized and brought to the climate change table. I believe this oversight is the cause of the demonization of the mining industry and not exhaustive of only the copper industry. I would be interested in hearing if there are industries, other than the mining of copper, that are facing related issues. From my experience, I believe gas stations are faced with much of the same negative scrutiny.
Additionally, I believe your use of the interview as a source was very powerful. Giving your blog the voice of someone directly tied to the issue at hand. Whether I agree, or disagree, it was a compelling read.
This blog is a great example of how what once was a small farm has grown to a sizable operation and continues to grow despite the future oppositions. They have shown that innovation and adaptability on a smaller scale can produce large impactful results. I especially enjoyed how you intertwined the various ways in which climate change is having an effect on all aspects of the industry. Climate change is playing a role in the water, cattle, crop, soil, and human capital. There is not one area within the industry unaffected by the threat of climate change. This goes to show how important the issue truly is to society today. It would be interesting to learn the motivation of the sellers that Wickman Farms is purchasing. Are they selling because they see the future obstacles resulting from climate change? Are they selling because they were behind the curve of innovation and lacked the ability to mitigate the changes already taking place?
Very interesting and well written article! I can remember when the failures of the 787-Dreamliner were plastered throughout the news in 2013. I was completely unaware of the reasoning for these big risks Boeing was undertaking to innovate and fulfill a promise to increase efficiency. I enjoyed your thought provoking question to conclude your blog. My answer is yes; I believe they can succeed. My biggest worry is not competition from their rival Airbus, but from a totally new competitor, the electric plane. It seems like every day we see new advancements for electric cars. I believe the same will be true for planes. In fact, a recent Wired article by Nick Stockton found at the link below discusses the advancements seen by NASA on their new X-57 Electric Plane project. The project team believes they will be capable to reduce power consumption to 20% of current planes using their findings. Maybe this will be the future.
A Scuba Diver,
As an avid fellow PADI certified scuba diver, I could not agree more that more needs to be done for awareness and preservation of these beautiful natural ecosystems. I am guilty of being one such diver you speak about in your article that lugs heavy equipment half way across the world. Admittedly, I have overlooked the negative impact these actions ironically stem from my good intentions. I appreciate you shedding light on the subject and issue at hand; I will most definitely think twice about renting equipment on all future dive trips.
One question I found myself pondering from reading your blog, what are a few specific examples of how PADI’s Project AWARE is taking on this challenge?
I enjoyed your post very much. Growing up in “coal country”, West Virginia, it was nice to see someone taking on a topic I witness every day. It is undeniably true that the low efficiency of coal combustion and government regulations are causing many Power Plants in the United States to convert to Natural Gas, or in many causes shut down completely. The entire state of WV has seen this first hand as U.S. coal production dropped 10.3% in 2015. In the same year, low production has led to many lay-offs at the coal mines and the average number of employee per coal mine decreased 12% to the lowest level ever recorded. Although it is an unfortunate event to watch as the economic depression sweeps across the state, it reminds us of the necessity to continuously strive for more efficient and sustainable energy sources.
 “Annual Coal Report 2015,” U.S. Energy Information Administration website, https://www.eia.gov/coal/annual, accessed November 2016.