Industry

‘Graph Theory’ & Food & Retail Innovation

The Wall Street Journal: “Every creative cook faces the challenge of choosing ingredients that combine deliciously. This is mostly a matter of culinary experience, intuition and imagination, plus a lot of trial and error. But Big Data can help, too … Enter the food scientist and trained chef Michael Nestrud … Dr. Nestrud uses an arcane […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Mar 28th, 2017 | , ,

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QWERTY: Sales Gimmick as Innovation

Quartz: “Welcome to the concept of path dependence. Paul A. David engagingly outlines the idea in his classic article ‘Clio and the Economics of QWERTY,’ first published in 1985 … The way David tells it, the QWERTY keyboard was developed by Christopher Latham Scholes, a Wisconsin printer and tinkerer, who ‘was the fifty-second man to […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Mar 7th, 2017 | , ,

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Adidas Speedfactory: Robotic Innovation

The Economist: “Behind closed doors in the Bavarian town of Ansbach a new factory is taking shape. That it will use robots and novel production techniques such as additive manufacturing (known as 3D printing) is not surprising for Germany … What is unique about this factory is that it will not be making cars, aircraft […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Jan 23rd, 2017 | , , , ,

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Natural Language & The New ‘Living’ Room

Wired: “Google, Amazon, and Microsoft are all racing to build systems that recognize and truly understand natural language—how you and I talk. If they can put this technology not only in your living room, but in your pocket and elsewhere, they can become the hub of everything you do online. Google wants to retain its […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Dec 16th, 2016 | , , , , , , ,

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The Undoing Project: Exploring ‘Natural Stupidity’

The New York Times: The Undoing Project, by Michael Lewis (also author of Moneyball), is “a story about two unconventional thinkers who saw the world differently from everyone around them. Their peculiar area of research — how humans make decisions, often irrationally — has had profound implications for an array of fields, like professional sports, […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Dec 14th, 2016 | , ,

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Zara Success: A Databased Culture

Bloomberg Businessweek: “Unlike rivals such as Gap, H&M, and Primark, Zara has no chief designer, and there’s little discernible hierarchy. Its 350 designers are given unparalleled independence in approving products and campaigns, shipping fresh styles to stores twice a week. Guided by daily data feeds showing what’s selling and what’s stalling, the teams develop fashions […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Dec 5th, 2016 | , , ,

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Predictive Analytics: The ‘Weatherization’ of Fashion

The Wall Street Journal: “FIT, one of the largest and best-known fashion schools … this semester launched a new, 15-week course called ‘Predictive Analytics for Planning and Forecasting: Case Studies with Weatherization.’ The course, geared toward students interested in retail and merchandising careers, is part of a broad overhaul of FIT’s curriculum to include more […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Journal | Dec 2nd, 2016 | , , ,

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Data Off-Base: Insight in the Age of Trump

The New York Times: “So when Mr. Trump won the election last week, an industry that prides itself on always knowing what motivates and excites the American public was in a state of shock. Marketers now find themselves asking serious questions about how they study consumers, use data and quantify the value of facts — […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Journal | Nov 16th, 2016 | , , , , ,

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To Test or De-Bug. That is the Question.

The Wall Street Journal: “It is much more efficient—and far less painful—to test each small part before stringing many pieces together. That way, the failures are less frequent, more informative and a lot easier to fix.” “Throughout most of human history, people’s interactions with the physical world … were based on various rules of thumb. […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Journal | Nov 7th, 2016 |

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The Content Trap: It’s All About Context

The Wall Street Journal: “To be sure, content is important. But what matters more is the connection between that content and the rest of the master plan … Information wants to be shared: Indeed, it is hard to find an area of news or entertainment where the real consumer value arises independent of a social […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Journal | Oct 28th, 2016 | ,

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Algorithms Are People Too

Wired: “Yes, everything on the Internet is a mix of the human and inhuman. Automated algorithms play a very big role in some services, like, say, the Google Search Engine. But humans play a role in these services too. Humans whitelist and blacklist sites on the Google Search Engine. They make what you might think […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Journal | Sep 20th, 2016 | , ,

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Zalando: Fashion, Emotion & Ecommerce

The Economist: “One of Europe’s most interesting technology companies sells shoes and threads … Zalando has a Silicon Valley-inspired work environment, holding “f**k-up nights’ to celebrate failure and ‘hack weeks’ to cook up new ideas. It encourages its employees to abandon hierarchy and structure for what it calls ‘radical agility.’ It has a 1,350-strong, and […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Sep 6th, 2016 | , , ,

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Dataism: The Next Religion?

  Financial Times: “Just as divine authority was legitimised by religious mythologies, and human authority was legitimised by humanist ideologies, so high-tech gurus and Silicon Valley prophets are creating a new universal narrative that legitimises the authority of algorithms and Big Data. This novel creed may be called “Dataism”. In its extreme form, proponents of […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Aug 30th, 2016 | , , ,

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Services: The Killer App of Smart ‘Things’

Christopher Mims: “The killer app of the Internet of Things isn’t a thing at all—it is services … When internet-connected devices are considered a service, consumers don’t have to worry about integrating gadgets. Focusing on services also helps vendors clarify their offerings … In the case of Brita, the service is filtered water. For alarm […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Aug 23rd, 2016 | ,

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The ‘Give’ Registry Embraces Survivors

Slate: “The Give Registry is a brilliant new gift registry and ad campaign from Australian department store chain Myer and agency Clemenger BBDO Melbourne that uses the model of a wedding gift registry to provide linens, cookware, dishes, and other household basics to domestic violence survivors.”   The post The ‘Give’ Registry Embraces Survivors appeared […]

By Tim Manners/Brand X Ventures | Aug 17th, 2016 | , , ,

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