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  • nmw 08:45:33 on 2014/03/28 Permalink
    Tags: big data, , categories, categorization, category, data, gigo, industry, marketing,   

    Personally, I prefer self-reliance to self-regulation 


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    “I think consumers care less than we think in the moment. They care in the abstract sense,” Kleinberg says.

    http://www.tractionco.com/blog/419-the-shadowy-world-of-data

    Whatever you put out there is free for the taking. If you give data to Google and/or Facebook (or Amazon or indeed almost any retard media website [such as the New York Times]), obviously they will sell it (probably simply to the highest bidder) in order to make money (after all: that’s their whole business model)… — and Adam is spot on when he notes that they’ve been doing it for years.

    What most of the retard media websites won’t tell you, though, is that 99% of the kids already know this and create bogus profiles. Even adults will “like” stuff on Facebook they don’t actually like in real life. Increasingly this “big data” business will boil down to nothing more than GIGO (essentially just a bunch of BS). Literate people do not click buttons to self-categorize themselves into some sort of industry-sanctioned pigeon-holes.

    See also http://businesses.entrechat.org/2014/03/big-data-vs-pig-data

     
  • feedwordpress 18:42:11 on 2013/12/09 Permalink
    Tags: , , big data, , , , , , , Kindle, Mayday, , , transformation, XBOX One   

    Looking Ahead to 2014 


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    Looking Ahead to 2014

    There are more than enough posts about predictions and trends for 2014 out there to entertain your mind. I’m not one to make predictions. I prefer to set the agenda. Two things I will talk about in this post to look forward to the next year: connected experiences and how we think about innovation.

    Let’s Talk About Connected Experiences

    While most of the discussion in 2014 will still be around the hot topics of Big Data, The Internet of Things, 3D Printing, and other buzzworthy topics; what holds these things together and can’t be easily replicated is an overall connected experience.  Organizations will still look at all of the hot topics as separate pieces, to see how they can integrate them, and this is usually how it starts: you starting testing in isolation until you figure out if works for you.

    But experiences are more fluid and connected than ever. The recent advances in sync technology that the XBOX One brings to the table is a leading indicator on how devices are connected experiences. You can bring them with you anywhere. And, while tablets and smartphones will become pervasive touch points in those experiences, the human element will not be replaced. People still want to have contact with people, if it makes sense.

    Amazon shows that they understand this better than ever with their Mayday feature that comes with the newest breed of Kindles. Whether they got it right or wrong isn’t the point. What they are saying is that they want to have contact with customers, and will be available with one click when the customer needs them. This is thinking ahead of the game, and just comes to show how they are “retail”.

    The Key Takeway Here

    The conversation about emerging technologies should be around the connected experience and outcomes for customers, not the benefits for an organization. Your point of view should define what to do and what not to do.

    To look back is to look forward. The saddest thing about 2013 is that the word “innovation” keeps getting diluted. It is now a marketing ploy. Before the end of the year, and every day after that, companies who are serious about innovation should ask themselves this question: how can we be the only ones who do what we do?

    The answer to that question isn’t about Big Data, or any other “hot topic”, it is about what are you enabling customers to do. How are you transforming them?

    People don’t remember specific features, they remember the experience had. Companies are confusing a product upgrade with innovation, and to believe that changing one thing is enough to make a splash is short-term-ism at its finest. A recent post on the Wall Street Journal has pretty much put it in perspective how executives are looking at innovation: “something that is innovative to them”.

    The Right Way to Think About Innovation

    The right way to think about innovation is this: how are we transforming customers? How are we helping them be innovative?

    This is a different way of thinking about value proposition; it’s about developing human capital. Not simply delivering a product or service “because that is what companies do”. Companies that believe that out-featuring competitors is the way to innovation riches are kidding themselves. You might feel that way in the short term, but you are simply adding more wood to the fire that creates a thick screen of smoke that distracts and annoys people.

    Customers, people, users, are experiencing more chaos than ever. Too many choices are creating noise in their lives. This is a huge opportunity for both startups and established companies to make an impact in people’s lives. The sooner you rethink how you look at innovation, the faster you will orient your efforts towards really thinking about how you might transform them.

    To finish, I’ll leave you with this last thought: the more you say you are innovative, the less innovative you are.

     

     
  • feedwordpress 00:25:53 on 2013/12/04 Permalink
    Tags: 2013 predictions, alivecor, , , big data, cheap tablets, eHealth, google glass, google now, Harvard Business Review, , , , innovation forecast, , innovation trends, look back look forward, mDevices, , , rethink robotics, retrofit, scripps health, tablets, tech trends, , UCSF, , wall-ye   

    A Look Back at Vivek Wadhwa’s Five 2013 Innovation Predictions 


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    A Look Back at Vivek Wadhwa’s Five 2013 Innovation Predictions

    Over the holiday weekend, Global Language Monitor released its Top 50 Business Buzzwords of 2013. Some of the words on the list? Content. Social Media. Game Changer. It’s official – Trend Recap and Forecasting season has begun.

    Before the entire business world starts to look back and look ahead, it’s always entertaining to revisit what the “experts” predicted for this year last December. I love keeping score.

    Let’s get things started with a review of Singularity University Professor Vivek Wadhwa’s five 2013 innovation predictions, featured in his WASHINGTON POST COLUMN. I’ll briefly recap each of Wadhwa’s predictions and evaluate his clairvoyant powers.

    1. A cheap tablet explosion

    Wadhwa predicted that the price of tablet computers would drop to under $100 in 2013 and keep dropping to near zero over the next two to three years. “Companies will give tablets away,” he said, “in exchange for plan subscriptions.”

    Scorecard: It happened (kinda).

    PC shipments declined 8 percent in 2013 while tablet shipments increased 53 percent. The market is being driven by a shift to lower-priced devices across all device categories, not just tablets. The average price of a tablet during 2013 was roughly $380 but if you factor out Apple iPADs, the average tablet price drops below $40.

    It is important to note, however, that recent research suggests substantial buyer remorse for cheap tablets. Many industry analysts think Apple will be able to retain premium vendor pricepoints. Tablet quality still has a clear price threshold.

    2. Wireless health self-monitoring devices will go “mainstream”

    Mobile devices will reshape healthcare in 2013, Wadhwa declared. He raved about the AliveCor Heart Monitor and heralded its potential for success.

    Scorecard: We’re headed that direction.

    Is a m-health gold rush on? Absolutely. RE:INVENTION recently featured the CEO of Retrofit on our blog. A new 2013 Consumer Electronics Association survey found that one-third of mobile device owners have used their mobile phones to track some aspect of their health.

    Still, “mainstream” is an optimist’s exaggeration. Less than 5 percent of U.S. broadband households currently own wireless health monitoring devices (like AliveCor). A mere 1,000 patients are currently using AliveCor devices, primarily through the company’s clinical trials with Scripps Health and UCSF. In November 2013, Alivecor transformed their heart monitor into an eHealth Service — that’s promising.

    3. Manufacturing jobs will return to the U.S.

    We’ll see a renaissance in design and creativity in 2013, portended Wadhwa, driven by advances in robotics, A.I., and 3D printing. And this will bring a wave of manufacturing jobs back to the U.S. Wadhwa also expected growing commercial availability of a new generation of robots like Baxter from Rethink Robotics and the grape-picking Wall-Ye.

    Scorecard: A renaissance? No. Progress, but it’s slow…

    A September 2013 BCG study revealed that over half of executives at manufacturing companies with sales of more than $1 billion INTEND to return some production to the United States from overseas. Twenty-one percent say that they are in the “process of some reshoring.”

    On the robotics front, Rethink Robotics recently expanded its Baxter Research Robot into the Asian market in partnership with Nihon Binary. But the price of robots will need to come down dramatically before they go mainstream. At $32K, the Wall-Ye is more expensive than manual labor. Despite its cool factor, Wall-Ye only has 17 likes on Facebook.

    When it comes to the robotics industry, we place our bets on drones. Even average Joes wanna own their own personal aerial surveillance technology. Some of us find the privacy implications terrifying. If you were my Facebook friend, you could explore my Photo Album featuring drones caught on camera across San Diego. Eerie? You bet.

    4. From big baloney to big opportunities in big data

    Wadhwa forecasted huge big data success stories in 2013 and triumph for Google Now, Popular Science’s 2012 Innovation of the Year.

    Scorecard: MEH.

    RE:INVENTION’s team discussed the deluge of Big Data in a recent Friday 5×5 blog post. Big Data still has a credibility problem. While Big Data can provide unprecedented amounts of information, many companies are still struggling to use Big Data effectively. If your company doesn’t have deep pockets like Google or Facebook and tons of dedicated data analysts and engineers on staff, mining business answers from Big Data can be a backbreaker. And from consumers’ perspectives, Big Data comes with the threat of infringing on privacy.

    Huge data sets are useless unless they provide actionable insights. For companies to generate value from Big Data, they need to connect data sets to insights to action in a fast, repeatable way.

    All this said, our lives and daily patterns will increasingly be up in “the cloud” for bidding to the highest payer. And this makes some folks nervous. For a quick read on the challenges Google Now faces with mainstream acceptance, check out the reader comments on THIS ARTICLE.

    5. A surge in wearable devices and new user interface paradigms

    Wadhwa brazenly predicted the obsolescence of the computer keyboard and mouse in 2013. And he expected Google Glass to soar: “When Google releases Project Glass…I predict we won’t even need computer screens at all.”

    Scorecard: When pigs fly, Sir Vivek Wadhwa.

    Wearable devices will be a companion to mobile phones, tablets, and computers, not a replacement. Gartner predicts that less than 1 percent of consumers will replace their mobile phones with a combination of a wearable device and a tablet by 2017.

    While size matters less and Time Magazine recently reported that people overwhelmingly prefer 7-inch tablets over 10-inch tablets – many wearable devices lack utility because of their tiny screen size (particularly tough for us older “vision-challenged” folks). Kind note to you youngsters out there: you will get old, despite Google’s hell-bent intention to cheat death. Dare to dream, Google. Dreams are great innovation kickstarters.

    As for Google Glass, the product faces H-U-G-E challenges before going mainstream. Privacy issues, a fugly design, usability problems, and fear (fear of Google and fear of change). Google’s “do no evil” mantra is akin to a car salesman telling you to trust him.

    For the record, we suspect Google will be a huge proponent of stealth drones. We’re NOT ALONE IN THIS OPINION. And we don’t think tablets and computers will be replaced by interactive glasses or wearable devices any time soon.

    MY OVERALL EVALUATION OF VIVEK WADHWA’S 2013 INNOVATION PREDICTIONS
    Pretty good job. Miss Cleo, John Edward, and Sylvia Browne would be impressed.

    So, how would you score Wadhwa’s 2013 predictions? Which trend surprised you most this year? What was YOUR favorite 2013 innovation or technology prediction?

    Later this week, I’ll review MIT Sloan School Center research fellow Michael Schrage’s four 2013 innovation predictions, as featured in his December 2012 Harvard Business Review Column.

     
  • feedwordpress 21:10:08 on 2013/11/22 Permalink
    Tags: , actionable business insights, big data, Big Data ROI, , , Data Visualization, FlowingData, G.I.S., genome research, geodemographic information science, , , , Visualize This, Whistle, wikileaks   

    5×5: The Big Deluge of Big Data 


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    5×5: The Big Deluge of Big Data

    It’s Friday. And that means, it’s time for Friday 5×5. Friday 5×5 is our weekly blog post featuring diverse perspectives from RE:INVENTION’s Leadership team about a controversial news article or research report.

    UP THIS WEEK: THE DELUGE OF BIG DATA

    Should companies be thankful for Big Data? Big Data can provide unprecedented amounts of information on consumer behavior, likely eliminating the needs of companies to use focus groups. However, many companies are struggling to use Big Data effectively. And from consumers’ perspectives, Big Data comes with the threat of infringing on privacy. In this week’s discussion, the RE:INVENTION team assesses the pros and cons that come with the implementation of Big Data.

    This Week’s Reference Articles:

    THIS WEEK’S QUESTION

    What are the pros and cons of big data for today’s business leaders?

    OUR TEAM’S RESPONSES

    Kirsten Osolind (“President and COO”)

    Data is “the next frontier for innovation.” Everybody says so, including McKinsey & Company. “Effective use of big data can increase a company’s return on investment by 10-20%,” McKinsey has declared. Big data leaders have 5% higher productivity and 6% higher profits than their competitors. For the rest of us, achieving Big Data payoffs can be vexing.

    In fact, if your company doesn’t have deep pockets like Google or Facebook and tons of dedicated data analysts and engineers on staff, mining business answers from Big Data can be a backbreaker. Many — dare I say most — companies have yet to put big data to the test in an actual business use case.

    And there’s the rub. Huge data sets are useless unless they provide actionable insights. For companies to generate value from Big Data, they need to connect data sets to insights to action in a fast, repeatable way.

    The secret to better Big Data ROI? Data visualization.

    Yes, some folks find numbers “sexy“, but most people think visually. Data visualization creates the narrative that companies need to harness Big Data for high impact. Data visualization can help your company see patterns, discover inconsistencies, and find answers to questions you never thought to ask. What you “don’t know that you don’t know.”

    According to a recent IDG Research study:

    • 98% of companies that are most effective at Big Data analysis have data visualization solutions in place.
    • Among companies that are “not very” or “not at all” effective at Big Data analysis, only 16% have implemented a data visualization solution and one-third have no plans to do so.

    Good data visualization requires more than eye-catching graphics. Here are six helpful tips:

    1. Tell a story — help viewers understand and make sense of the information.
    2. Know your audience — ask yourself what they already know, what their preconceived biases will be, and how they will interpret the new information.
    3. KISS if you can — simple is usually best, but realize that sometimes complex datasets require complex visualizations.
    4. Pick the right tool(s) for your data — let your questions guide your choice of data visualization tools.
    5. Consider hiring a vendor/service partner. No hard sell here on RE:INVENTION’s services. My point is simply that hiring experienced Big Data consultants — preferably those who are skilled in design thinking — can shorten your learning curve as your company nurtures your own Big Data prowess.
    6. Interactive maps are cool — in fairness, this is just my humble (and perhaps biased) opinion.

    When it comes to privacy, research suggests that most people will willingly share their personal information in exchange for benefits (discounts and perks). Safeguarding that data is the onus of ethical companies.

    Want some good reading materials on data visualization? I’m a HUGE FAN of Visualize This: The Flowing Data Guide to Design, Visualization, and Statistics (Wiley) written by author Nathan Yau, (aka FlowingData blogger).

    Joe Barrus (“The Technologist”)

    Big Data is the latest buzzword/trend businesses are being told they must adopt.  We are in the middle of the hype cycle where Big Data is heavily marketed and sold but whose benefits; implementation and application are not clearly understood or agreed upon by both suppliers and consumers.

    But like all new technologies and movements, there is basic value that will come to rest for the duration.  Big Data is here to stay.  In fact it will become a necessary tool for business survival and well integrated into business strategy and operational processes going into the future.

    The prima facie value is big data’s ability to gain insight into behaviors, needs and desires of different demographics through the technology’s ability to recognize patterns that exist in volumes of data.  By leveraging these patterns, businesses can get closer to providing consumers with more personalized products and services at economic scale.  This will give companies better capability to differentiate and compete within niche markets.  Economically, it is a knowledge creation machine that will help optimize products and services that will benefit consumers.

    But probably the greater value for Big Data is its ability to crunch volumes of data to reach accurate decisions quicker.  As we move into the future, we are seeing accelerating technological change.  This only serves to reduce the windows of opportunity to capitalize on new products and services.  Big Data gives companies the ability to predict future demand and make key strategic and tactical business decisions quicker than has been with traditional business analysis activities.  This speed to action will become a core capability all companies will need to develop in order to survive in today’s fast changing markets.  There are plenty of examples of where slow and inaccurate decision making has imposed significant harm on businesses profitability and survival.

    Outside of markets, Big Data has the ability to enable and bring forth significant social change. Big Data will become a core technology that will help with social planning, improving healthcare outcomes, reducing environmental risk, providing security, etc.

    But all this does not come without risk.  The negative implications are reduced privacy and potential for abuse.  But all improvements come with tradeoffs; we just need to decide as a society what we are willing to trade for those improvements.  I happen to like it when Amazon recommends products to me based on what others who were shopping in similar contexts bought.  But I also know that would not be possible if our shopping behavior was not stored and used as a source to produce those recommendations.  But because I’m confident that no one (at any level of significance) is examining my personal data with a critical eye but rather machines are objectively looking at patterns to improve my experiences, I’m ok with that.  We’ve always made these tradeoffs in the past on a smaller scale when we answer surveys and fill out personal profiles, etc.  It’s just that nowadays; this is done at a much greater scale.

    However, this greater scale is exactly what increases the risk of abuse if this data falls into nefarious hands.  If this data falls into the hands of criminals or unscrupulous government officials, it does present a real risk.  This is why it is important as a society to not become complacent as Big Data becomes more ubiquitous.  We need to understand the potential for abuse and set appropriate limitations and exert strong governance processes to manage and enforce it.  Any technology can be abused.  One can use a telephone to make bomb threats, but that doesn’t mean we need to ban telephones.  But we do need to make sure that abuse of these technologies are addressed and enforced.

    Big Data is here to stay and I believe its positives outweigh its negatives overall as it will have significant positive impact on future society as long as we pay attention to what we are doing.

    Dennis Jarvis (“The Marketeer”)

    What is Big Data? If it is quite simply (although there is nothing simple about Big Data design and management) the harnessing of vast amounts of information to provide the public with better products, services and conveniences to meet individual needs and improve lives, it sounds quite desirable. If we put Big Data in the context of “it is not just what you know, it’s what you know about whom,” it seems to take-on a darker side, almost something out of the analogs of Wikileaks, with concerning ethical, perhaps legal concerns.

    To me, Big Data parallels genome research. Genome research has opened-up the mother lode of life saving and changing medical options. We are now gaining access into the very causes of disease and potential solutions for prevention. Genome research has also caused rift in sectors of society over ethics and morals, almost akin to what surfaced with the publishing of Aldous Huxley’s novel, Brave New World. However, the advances to-date and portending for the future have far outweighed any downside, in my opinion.

    Big Data has been progressing for many decades. Even in the early analog days of data collection, there was concern about confidentiality. The digital age has mushroomed this. I remember my feeling of confidence employing G.I.S. (Geodemographic Information Science) systems to identify micro-marketing opportunities, and even with these technologies there were confidentiality concerns, albeit nowhere near what has been raised about Big Data. How far we have come. I think Big Data holds more promise than concern. Nonetheless, as with anything in society, we will encounter individual acts that will raise alarm. But, I believe these will be in the minority and we cannot allow the 2% to drive the 98%.

    In business, science and government, the role and governance of Big Data needs to be set at the very top with a strong vision. Big Data requires organizational leaders to set the culture, agenda and rules, and to be held accountable by their constituencies and customers.

    Jorge Barba (“The Culture Guy”)

    With great power comes great responsibility. So companies should first feel more responsible, not thankful. I don’t think most company executives are in that state of mind though.

    Anyhow, I believe invasion of privacy will become the norm, and most won’t even notice when that happens. The problem, from a consumer’s point of view, is that most everything we use is now connected to a larger network of things. At some point, everything will be connected.  This is the data that has unprecedented value for companies who are competing a consumer’s attention because, well, it’s never been there before.

    But for companies, this creates a headache because they have more dots to connect that could potentially provide more meaning. Still, the challenge is to make sense of it all. It is very easy to take the data as a leading indicator of future behavior. Data won’t replace intuition, but enhance it. But to see its full potential, both for the consumer and the business, companies must be human oriented to make sense of it all.

    The point: don’t put an economist or IT person in front of the data. Put an anthropologist, a psychologist, a designer, anybody who looks beyond the numbers by going outside the building and having contact with the market.

    Kane (“K-9 Intern”)

    Humans have plenty of data. It’s time to analyze us dogs. Three big woofs for Big Data startup company, Whistle.  Whistle helps pet owners spot early signs that their dog is sick using Big Data. Their wearable Whistle Tracker measures your dog’s activity levels during walks, play, and rest. Works great for me when I hit the gym for yoga.

    THE FINAL WORD

    Big Data is here to stay. It is in any company’s best interest to embrace it and use it to better understand and predict their customers’ behaviors. At RE:INVENTION, our team of change agents weed through big data, provide actionable business insights, design customized business intelligence tools, and ultimately commercialize products and build markets for Clients. Our goal is to help our Clients make better informed decisions, reinventing the way that they do business. LEARN MORE about our Services.

     

     
  • feedwordpress 18:07:46 on 2013/11/12 Permalink
    Tags: , big data, , , , idea generation, , , , metrics, reinventing research, , reinventiveness, Steve Jobs   

    Market Intelligence: Steve Jobs vs. the Rest of Us 


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    Market Intelligence: Steve Jobs vs. the Rest of Us

    Most of us have heard about the aversion of Steve Jobs to marketing research, who felt that it limited true innovation. He had an unwavering confidence in his own opinion and instinct over what marketing research might tell him – an approach that obviously served him extremely well with Apple and Pixar. Jobs, like Edison, Disney and other famous innovators of that breed, possessed an uncanny ability to conceptualize beyond the present and take
    society to new unimaginable frontiers. Unfortunately, the rest of us need to innovate and reinvent with strong empirically derived insights about the marketplace. So, with all due deference to Steve Jobs, I would like to express my respect and thanks for the discipline of marketing research, and the extensive tool chest that comes with it – a tool chest that has become amazingly expansive with digital technologies.

    Well-conceived and executed marketing research enables the rest of us to make smart, fact based decisions, and reduces the risk associated with introducing faulty products, services, market penetration strategies and campaigns. I have been frequently confronted with the challenges posed by marketing research skeptics: “It takes too long.” “It is too expensive.” “Am I just going to learn something I already know?” The fact of the matter is that well conceived and designed marketing research does not have to be any of these, especially today with the digital capabilities available.

    Let’s consider secondary research. The Internet enables marketers to efficiently conduct competitive assessments at little or no cost. Prior to the Internet, a business would have little choice but to purchase either a stock or customized industry report to capture information about the competition. Now, competitive websites tell us a great deal. We can also employ social listening tools that allow marketers to monitor consumer chatter occurring about competitors as well as their own company. Search engines quickly point us in the direction of the statistics and market intelligence we need on target markets for a new innovation or business reinvention endeavor. Big companies and start-ups alike need this information to develop addressable market assumptions for business plans and to obtain funding.

    Primary research (e.g., surveys, focus groups, diary panels) has received an incredible boost from digital formats. Most marketing research agencies today offer online services, which allow for very cost efficient sampling, surveying and data capture. Also, this data can be quickly uploaded into sophisticated modeling designs to forecast marketplace uptake. Additionally, companies, such as Survey Monkey, have grown in popularity because they allow virtually anyone to conduct a survey, with a sample provided by the marketer or purchased at a very low price from the provider. Survey Monkey automatically loads the data into easily understood tables and graphs and information is available on a 24/7 basis.

    Marketing research in the digital age is faster and more economical than ever. Not unlike research conducted prior to the digital age, it needs to be conducted with a plan, the knowledge of how to ask the right questions to address the problem, and the ability to build insights from the data that lead to actionable and sound strategies. Sound marketing research helps us to avoid the pitfall of bringing to market an offering that may otherwise be destined for failure. So, give thanks for a discipline that can give you peace of mind and a good night’s sleep.

     
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