Change Itself Doesn’t Hurt. What Hurts is Our Resistance to Change.

“… will require changes in product design and business approaches that have ripple effects throughout supply chains and economic systems.”

What are multi-level solutions? How is MIT driving innovation towards zero waste in circular economies?  Can apps really fuel data-rich pictures to save the planet? What’s on the near horizon for healthcare? Is money really the root of all evil? Or, is it simply an entrenched mindset highly resistant to change?

And, finally why are physicists “high-fiving” themselves for discovering a formula for water drops?  Is it about the potential commercial opportunities from the formula’s cascading, rippling effects?

We Need a Data-Rich Picture of What’s Killing the Planet

To tackle the marine litter mystery, Eriksen and other antipollution groups built an app that hundreds of volunteers used to map the banks of the Los Angeles River, where trash was entering the marine ecosystem. Now cities can use that data to do surgical interventions, like identifying hot spots that need more trash cans or more frequent cleanup. “It’s totally scalable,” Eriksen says, and groups from Ecuador to Hawaii plan to use the app for their own surveys.” WIRED · by Clive Thompson Illustration CAITLYN GRABENSTEIN

Calling Innovators To Join The Circular Economy Challenge

This realization, fuelled by escalating consumer concern, is driving businesses to find multi-level solutions for circular economies with zero waste. In support, MIT’s Solve initiative is calling for innovators to submit their sustainable solutions. The leading question is, ‘How can people create and consume goods that are renewable, repairable, reusable and recyclable?’ Generating these solutions, Solve proposes, ‘will require changes in product design and business approaches that have ripple effects throughout supply chains and economic systems.’” by Natalie Parletta ROMOLO TAVANI, ADOBE PHOTO STOCK

Curated by Steve Howard in “The Journal of 2020 Foresight,” the Know Laboratories’ digital magazine.

The next frontier in health care: regenerative medicine

This is done through diet, lifestyle, acupuncture — which stimulates the body’s own stem cells — mindset and other practices. Regenerative medicine is an exciting aspect of this care. ‘Prescriptions and surgery certainly have their place in health care, but I think people in general are recognizing the need to be stewards of their own health,’ Dr. Lawrence said. ‘If we can look at the whole person and picture, we can see a long-term better result. Hopefully this is where we’ll see healthcare going — with different health care providers coming together.’” By Lauren Glendenning Shutterstock images

Rise of the Extinction Deniers

What does all of this serve? Obviously, just as with climate denial, the more you deny that extinctions happen or that they’re a problem, the more you can drill, blast, pave, extract or eliminate—all so you can remove any barriers to your “freedom” and make as much money as you want. Amidst a very real extinction crisis affecting species around the globe, that’s the type of mindset that needs to go extinct.” Scientific American By John R. Platt Credit: Paul Brennan Pixabay

Scientists Discover an ‘Unexpectedly Simple’ Formula Behind The Nature of Water Drops

This infinitesimal phenomenon has been studied by physicists for decades, but while the overall concept may be easy to imagine, discerning the mathematical relationships that underpin such electrified explosions has been anything but. Now that it’s been figured out, scientists say this one formula could lead to new advancements in everything from space propulsion to mass spectrometry, high-resolution printing, air purification, molecular analysis, and more.” BY PETER DOCKRILL (peter bocklandt/iStock)

If you find this digest valuable,  please visit us at Know Laboratories and sign up to receive free email updates about “Thriving in an Age of Accelerating Uncertainty.

Knowing About New Possibilities Gives You More Choices. Check These Out.

When compared with previous industrial revolutions, the Fourth Industrial Revolution is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace.

What is it that big companies don’t understand about 83 million of their customers? What’s hiding in  Mary Meeker ‘s 333 slides this year? If you don’t know what the 4th Industrial Revolution is all about, will there be any hope for you in the future? Why isn’t separating your recycles from your garbage bins at your curbside enough? What’s hiding in your gut and why does it mean to your response to drug treatments – especially if you suffer from Parkinson’s? And, what’s this about floating solar panel islands, CO2 conversion and sea water?

Here’s the 1 Eye-Opening Statistic About Millennials That Big Companies Are Finally Beginning to Notice Hint: 35 percent.

“But a new report suggests that big companies are having a sudden realization–something that almost every one of the 83.1 million Millennial Americans knew a long time ago, and in fact that they’ve been screaming from the proverbial rooftops. It’s that while as a generation Millennials are “digitally native, mobile oriented, media savvy, politically progressive, ethnically diverse, well-educated and culturally savvy,” as Adweek put it recently, they also have one other giant defining characteristic: They’re kinda broke. The big culprits? There are two (neither is a big surprise). Number 1 is housing. Millennials are spending far more than their predecessors just to keep a roof over their heads. Half are still renting, and they’re paying a larger share of their income in rent than previous generations did. Number 2 is student debt. Americans under 30 owe $384 billion in student loans. Go back to 2004 — and honestly, student loans were a big issue then already — and the number was just $148 billion for that cohort.” By Bill Murphy Jr.

Mary Meeker just published her highly anticipated internet trends report

Well-known venture capital investor Mary Meeker is out with her annual internet trends report, which has become required reading for tech investors. After splitting with Silicon Valley investing giant Kleiner Perkins in September, Meeker started a new firm called Bond Capital, which has raised $1.25 billion so far.  The 333-slide report highlights the rise in digital media and visual communication like Instagram, wearable technology and digital payments, among other trends. More than half of the human population is online, Meeker said on stage at Recode. Public and private investments into tech companies is at at a two-decade high, nearing $200 billion last year. Wearable technology is booming, and users have doubled in the past four years. E-commerce and ride-share driven digital payments are rising. Image-based communication like Instagram, is on the rise. YouTube and Instagram are gaining the most for time spent on online platforms. Interactive games like Fortnite are gaining ground. Total players have accelerated at 2.4 billion, up 6% this year. “Privacy concerns are high but they’re moderating,” Meeker said on stage at Recode. Media time spent on mobile hit “equilibrium.” China makes up 21% of total global internet users vs. 8% in the United States.” Kate Rooney

Curated by Steve Howard in “The Journal of 2020 Foresight,” the Know Laboratories’ digital magazine.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution: what it means, how to respond

“When compared with previous industrial revolutions, the Fourth is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace. Moreover, it is disrupting almost every industry in every country. And the breadth and depth of these changes herald the transformation of entire systems of production, management, and governance. The possibilities of billions of people connected by mobile devices, with unprecedented processing power, storage capacity, and access to knowledge, are unlimited. And these possibilities will be multiplied by emerging technology breakthroughs in fields such as artificial intelligence, robotics, the Internet of Things, autonomous vehicles, 3-D printing, nanotechnology, biotechnology, materials science, energy storage, and quantum computing.”  Klaus Schwab  Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum

United States of Plastic Where does your plastic go? 

“Global investigation reveals America’s dirty secret A Guardian investigation has found that hundreds of thousands of tons of US plastic are being shipped every year to poorly regulated developing countries around the globe for the dirty, labor-intensive process of recycling. The consequences for public health and the environment are grim. A team of Guardian reporters in 11 countries has found:Last year, the equivalent of 68,000 shipping containers of American plastic recycling were exported from the US to developing countries that mismanage more than 70% of their own plastic waste.” Guardian US · Erin McCormick, Bennett Murray , Carmela Fonbuena , Leonie Kijewski, Gökçe Saraçoğlu , Jamie Fullerton, Alastair Gee and Charlotte Simmonds 

Rigorous study explains how a single gut bacteria species can eat Parkinson’s disease drug

One of the most compelling, and burgeoning, areas in medical research today is the influence of our gut microbiome on a whole host of mechanisms in our body. A Yale University study just last week catalogued how 76 kinds of gut bacteria can negatively affect 176 commonly prescribed medicines. Ultimately this new research paints the most complete picture to date of how a specific bacterial species can disrupt the metabolism of a commonly used drug. The striking study offers a new insight into why medicines do not work the same way in every person, and better understanding these mechanisms may suggest ways to significantly improve the efficacy drugs we have already developed, instead of producing entirely new ones.” Rich Haridy

Giant Floating Solar Farms Could Extract CO2 From Seawater, Producing Methanol Fuel

“Millions of floating islands, clustered together, that convert carbon dioxide to methanol fuel could help reduce the amount of green house gases in the atmosphere, according to researchers from Norway and Switzerland. In the paper, the researchers suggest floating islands similar to large-scale floating fish farms. They would use photovoltaic cells that could convert solar energy into electricity. This would then power hydrogen production and carbon dioxide extraction from seawater. The gasses produced would then be reacted to form methanol that can be reused as a fuel.” Scott Snowden

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

Is It Time to Inhale the Future and Exhale the Past? Just Ask Walmart.

“For too many retailers these shifts have silently crept up on them. Francese traces the root of the problem to the age of most C-suite executives.”

What’s wrong with science, and why should you care? Can science overcome three stumbling blocks to answering the greatest  mysteries ? How many dabblers does it take to beat the experts? Are retail executives too old to prevent retail apocalypse? And so much more ….

Specific People Are Weirdly Good at Predicting the Future  The difference, according to the 20-year study, is that people who dabbled in a bunch of different fields learned from their errors. Meanwhile, the more narrowly-focused experts doubled down on their worldviews, often blaming some small unpredictable variable for their inaccuracy and becoming increasingly confident in their beliefs”. Dan Robitzski

Four Demographic Trends That Many Retailers Missed, But Not Walmart  But many other retailers have been caught unawares, which is the underlying cause of what has been called the retail apocalypse. The unexciting, yet fundamental demographic trends changing the retail market in American include declining fertility rates, shifting age and income distributions and how these have impacted the American family structure. For too many retailers these shifts have silently crept up on them. Francese traces the root of the problem to the age of most C-suite executives. “They are in their 60s and graduated from college thirty or more years ago. The culture was totally different then,” he says. “It is hard to pull that image out of their minds and replace it with something that is 2020.Forbes · Pamela N. Danziger

Curated by Steve Howard in “The Journal of 2020 Foresight,” the Know Laboratories’ digital magazine.

Is Science Broken? Major New Report Outlines Problems in Research  Common issues highlighted by these scientists have included fraudulent, poorly done, or overhyped studies, with embellished findings based on small sample sizes; statistical manipulation of a study’s results during or after the experiment is over to achieve a desired outcome; and studies with negative conclusions being suppressed by their authors or rejected by scientific journals, which can then skew the medical literature on a particular topic, such as a drug’s effectiveness.” Gizmodo · Ed Cara View on gizmodo.com

Cosmos, Quantum and Consciousness: Is Science Doomed to Leave Some Questions Unanswered?  “Gleiser, Frank, and Thompson highlight three particular stumbling blocks: cosmology (we cannot view the universe from the “outside”); consciousness (a phenomenon we experience only from within); and what they call “the nature of matter”—roughly, the idea that quantum mechanics appears to involve the act of observation in a way that is not clearly understood. Consequently, they say, we must admit that there are some mysteries science may never be able to solve.” View on scientificamerican.com Dan Falk

New desalination method could get industry – and the environment – out of a very salty pickle  A by-product of oil and gas production, fossil-fueled power plants, flue-gas desulfurization, landfill leaching, industrial effluent and inland desalination, hypersaline brines are difficult and expensive to treat and if mismanaged, they can cause severe damage to surface and groundwater sources. Having an effective, affordable method for dealing with these brines could make huge quantities of water available for agriculture and industrial uses, and even as a possible source of drinking water. With these challenges in mind, engineers at Columbia University in New York City, have devised a solvent-based method of extracting fresh water from these brines which is efficient, effective and low-cost, and which they’ve dubbed “temperature swing solvent extraction” or TSSE.” Matt Kennedy View on newatlas.com

How a Last-Ditch Hack Led to the Invention of Quantum Mechanics  “Planck first proposed this little nugget of an idea in a 1900 paper, and the concept was later picked up by Albert Einstein himself. From there, the idea grew. Perhaps it’s not just energy that’s released in discrete, finite packets. Perhaps it’s many things. Perhaps reality, at its most fundamental, subatomic level, is … quantized. That single realization opened the door to what we now call quantum mechanics: that the physics of the very small is based on discrete packets of energy, momentum, and more. It turns out that the rules of the universe at subatomic scales don’t look very much like our macroscopic rules, and we have Max Planck (accidentally) to thank for it.”  View on space.com By Paul Sutter 

Scientists Say They’ve Cooked Up an Endlessly Recyclable Plastic  Plastics aren’t recycled nearly as much as we’d like them to be, but a team from Berkeley Lab has developed a method to hopefully make that process easier. In a recently published study, these researches describe a new type of plastic that can be broken down at the molecular level to create new plastic without any deterioration in quality. The goal is to improve the recycling process so that fewer plastics end up in landfills or oceans.” View on earther.gizmodo.com Yessenia Funes

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

 

Is It Too Late to Stimulate Your Creative Juices?

Reconnect the dots in new and different ways to uncover hidden opportunities for your career and personal life.

Consider the case study about the builders of the “Doomsday Seed Vault”  and the horror they must have felt, when they realized the genius of their deep-future planet-saving food-bank scenario failed to include the present day risk of Arctic Warming.

Oops, now what?

What if …

What are some of the other consequences triggered by the continuing change in the ocean conveyor built, especially at a time when we may be reaching “Peak Indifference” on climate change?

Curated by Steve Howard in “The Journal of 2020 Foresight,” Know Laboratories’ digital magazine.

Or, what about the second and third degree rippling effects?

What are the implications for the cost of your insurance premiums?

Which industries will boom and which will decay if the first graphene-based device is real, and available for market before the end of this year?

Tick. Tick. Tick.

As a consumer, a citizen or a power plant operator, what are the implications of the patent filed by Tesla to bypass the Electrical Grid?

Or, what if science gets it right and can turn abundant seawater into hydrogen fuel bypassing the need for hybrid-vehicles?

How will your life change, or the life of someone you know and care about, if the science of deep brain simulation becomes available?

Tick. Tick. Tick.

Or, what are the unintended consequences of Harvard’s discovery of a DNA gene-controlling switch for whole-body regeneration? 

Game, set, match?

And, finally a little bit closer to home.

What about the so-called “Economic Singularity”?

Snooze alarm.

How realistic is it,  if what futurists fear the most, robots come and take our jobs away.

Yours, mine, theirs?

Forever?

No need to be an alarmist, here.

But, what if …?

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

Consciousness, Disruption and Chaos. It’s All Good!?

But that happened over several generations and centuries. We are going to see that kind of upheaval in many industries in half a generation.

 

“The results can have a tremendous impact on our understanding of how the immune system functions and how the incidence of some of the most serious illnesses, including diabetes, cancer and Alzheimer’s, might be avoided,”

Economic Recovery

Journal of 2020 Foresight

The Coming Recession Will Be Different

“Markets and most businesses will figure out how to survive. New businesses will keep launching. New technologies will thrive. We will continue to need food, shelter, transportation, communication, and all the things we think of as normal today. This will all happen while technology “eats” jobs faster than it creates them. It was all well and good when we went from 80% of the workforce on farms to 1% today. But that happened over several generations and centuries. We are going to see that kind of upheaval in many industries in half a generation. Can you blame frustrated workers? People wishing that they can have their jobs protected? Wanting the government to do something? In the coming decade, I think politics will be more important to markets than ever before. That is not to say investors can’t figure it out. Recovery from the Great Recession was the slowest on record. The next recovery will be even slower.” John Mauldin Contributor, Markets forbes.com Photo- Getty

Technology-Driven Disruption

10 Industries On The Cusp Of Technological Disruption

The experts of Forbes Technology Council are often ahead of the curve when it comes to tech trends. Below, nine members share their insider perspectives on the industries and services that are on the cusp of tech disruption in the near future.

1. Doctor’s Office Visits. 2. Financial And Legal Services. 3. Healthcare Diagnostics. 4. Education. 5. Data Protection. 6. Customer Service. 7. Insurance. 8. Automotive Industry. 9. Security. 10. ‘Paper Pushers’. Expert Panel, Forbes Technology Council.” forbes.com Photo- Getty

Memories of the Past

How the Brain Creates a Timeline of the Past

The brain can’t directly encode the passage of time, but recent work hints at a workaround for putting timestamps on memories of events. Invigorated by empirical support for their theory, he and his colleagues have been working on a broader framework, which they hope to use to unify the brain’s wildly different types of memory, and more: If their equations are implemented by neurons, they could be used to describe not just the encoding of time but also a slew of other properties —  even thought itself. But that’s a big if. Since the discovery of time cells in 2008, the researchers had seen detailed, confirming evidence of only half of the mathematics involved. The other half — the intermediate representation of time — remained entirely theoretical. Until last summer.” Jordana Cepelewicz, Staff Writer quantamagazine.org  Photo Cydney Scott for Boston University Photography (Howard); Courtesy of Karthik Shankcar

Consciousness Frontiers

How we identified brain patterns of consciousness

“Research like this has the potential to lead to an understanding of how objective biomarkers can play a crucial role in medical decision making. In the future it might be possible to develop ways to externally modulate these conscious signatures and restore some degree of awareness or responsiveness in patients who have lost them, for example by using non-invasive brain stimulation techniques such as transcranial electrical stimulation. Indeed, in my research group at the University of Birmingham, we are starting to explore this avenue. Excitingly the research also takes us as step closer to understanding how consciousness arises in the brain. With more data on the neural signatures of consciousness in people experiencing various altered states of consciousness – ranging from taking psychedelics to experiencing lucid dreams – we may one day crack the puzzle.” Davinia Fernández-Espejo theconversation.com Photo whitehoune/Shutterstock

Chaos and Serious Illness Prevention

Immune system found to tap into chaos theory to regulate itself

“This isn’t just a system that tolerates chaos either. As the levels of NF-κB swing up and down, the activation of certain genes increases, meaning the protein is working at peak efficiency when there’s a healthy amount of chaos in the system. “The results can have a tremendous impact on our understanding of how the immune system functions and how the incidence of some of the most serious illnesses, including diabetes, cancer and Alzheimer’s, might be avoided,” says Mogens Høgh Jensen, co-author of the study. “For example, we know that cancer is related to a failure of signaling within the body. So, to avoid cancer, it is imperative to have the right dynamic at work in cells.” Michael Irving newatlas.com Credit: agsandrew/Depositphotos

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

What Do You Need To Know As AI Changes Your World?

Deep learning involves feeding data to large neural networks that crudely simulate the human brain

 

Image credit: Getty Images
The picture out there and the one painted above is one of massive and rapid change to the way people think and operate, which will affect material pain.

 

The AI Survival Guide For Leaders

“I am not a huge fan of perpetual clichés like, “The world will be changing faster than ever before,” and “This time is different,” but this time is different. The picture out there and the one painted above is one of massive and rapid change to the way people think and operate, which will affect material pain. But with change also comes excitement and opportunity. And those reading articles like this one will react to the impending change with a sense of enablement, not shock. Avoiding amygdala hijacks in favor of optimistic clarity will allow leaders to harness the newfound time — freed up by artificial intelligence — to steer an ever-growing enterprise.” Forbes CommunityVoice by Laura Berger photo Pexels

The A-Z of how artificial intelligence is changing the world

a is for… artificial intelligence

“Since the early days of computers, scientists have strived to create machines that can rival humans in their ability to think, reason and learn – in other words, artificial intelligence. While today’s AI systems still fall short of that goal, they are starting to perform as well as, and sometimes better than, their creators at certain tasks. Thanks to new techniques that allow machines to learn from enormous sets of data, AI has taken massive leaps forward. AI is starting to move out of research labs and into the real world. It is having an impact on our lives. BBC future” By Richard Gray Image credit: Getty Images

One of the fathers of AI is worried about its future

“Yoshua Bengio wants to stop talk of an AI arms race and make the technology more accessible to the developing world. Alongside Geoff Hinton and Yann LeCun, Bengio is famous for championing a technique known as deep learning that in recent years has gone from an academic curiosity to one of the most powerful technologies on the planet. Deep learning involves feeding data to large neural networks that crudely simulate the human brain, and it has proved incredibly powerful and effective for all sorts of practical tasks, from voice recognition and image classification to controlling self-driving cars and automating business decisions.” View on technologyreview.com by Will Knight ECOLE POLYTECHNIQUE | FLICKR

The difference between AI and machine learning, explained

“Machine learning is a subset of artificial intelligence, just one of the many ways you can perform AI. Machine learning relies on defining behavioral rules by examining and comparing large data sets to find common patterns. This is an approach that is especially efficient for solving classification problems. For instance, if you provide a machine learning program with a lot of x-ray images and their corresponding symptoms, it will be able to assist (or possibly automate) the analysis of x-ray images in the future. The machine learning application will compare all those different images and find what are the common patterns found in images that have been labeled with similar symptoms. And when you provide it with new images it will compare its contents with the patterns it has gleaned and tell you how likely the images contain any of the symptoms it has studied before.” thenextweb.com By BEN DICKSON 

What is machine learning? We drew you another flowchart

Machine learning is the process that powers many of the services we use today—recommendation systems like those on Netflix, YouTube, and Spotify; search engines like Google and Baidu; social-media feeds like Facebook and Twitter; voice assistants like Siri and Alexa. The list goes on. In all of these instances, each platform is collecting as much data about you as possible—what genres you like watching, what links you are clicking, which statuses you are reacting to—and using machine learning to make a highly educated guess about what you might want next. Or, in the case of a voice assistant, about which words match best with the funny sounds coming out of your mouth. Frankly, this process is quite basic: find the pattern, apply the pattern.” MIT Technology Review View on technologyreview.com by Karen Hao

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

19) Anticipate the growing shifts in life and business. Nobody wants to swim upstream if the current is moving everything in the opposite direction. Clue your fans in.

Which forces have peaked or are reversing themselves?

Turbulent changes in the current of our life – its pace, pattern and scale – challenge our notions of what is real.

 

Since beginningless time people have wanted to know where life will take them. 

 

Today you and I are in one of those periods that occur every 200 or 300 years when people don’t understand the world anymore, when the past is not sufficient to explain the future. 

Turbulent changes in the current of our life – its pace, pattern and scale – challenge our notions of what is real. 

How do you stimulate your own powers of foresight?

Consider the following thought provokers. 

Ask yourself, in following categories 

  1. What are the brand new trends and forces? 
  2. Which are the ones growing in importance? 
  3. Which current forces are loosing their steam? 
  4. Which have peaked or are reversing themselves? 
  5. Which are the “wildcards” about to disrupt us in the future? 

TECHNICAL thought for food: 

Electronics, 

Materials, 

Energy, Fossil, Nuclear, Alternative, Other, 

Manufacturing (techniques), 

Agriculture, 

Machinery and Equipment, 

Distribution, 

Transportation (Urban, Mass, Personal, Surface, Sea, Subsurface, Space), 

Communication (Printed, Spoken, Interactive, Media), 

Computers (Information, Knowledge, Storage & Retrieval, Design, Network Resources), 

POLITICAL thought for food:

Post-Cold War, Third World, 

Conflict (Local, Regional, Global), 

Arms Limitation, Undeclared Wars, Terrorism, Nuclear Proliferation, Weapons of Mass Destruction, 

Governments (More/Less Power and Larger or Smaller Scale), 

Taxes, 

Isms: Nationalism, Regionalism, Protectionism, Populism, 

Cartels, Multinational Corporations, Balance of Trade, Third Party Payments, 

Regulations (OSHA, etc.) Environmental Impact, 

U.S. Prestige Abroad. 

SOCIAL Thought for food: 

Labor Movements, 

Employment Patterns, Work Hours / Schedules, Fringe Benefits, 

Management Approaches, Accounting Policies, Productivity, Energy Costs, 

Generations: Elderly, Boomers, X, Y, Z 

Urban vs. Rural Lifestyles, 

Affluent vs. Poor, 

Neighborhoods and Communities,

ECONOMIC Thought for food: 

Unemployment / Employment Cycles, 

Recession, Balance of Payments, 

Inflation, 

Taxes, 

Rates of Real Growth, 

Distribution of Wealth, 

Capital Availability and Costs, 

Reliability of Forecasts, 

Raw Materials, Availability and Costs, 

Global versus National Economy, 

Market versus Planned Economies, 

Planned or Organic Growth.

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

19) Anticipate the growing shifts in life and business. Nobody wants to swim upstream if the current is moving everything in the opposite direction. Clue your fans in.

If a New Era of Technology is in the Driver’s Seat, Where Are We Going?

4 tech developments that will impact every business this year

Could a robot ever replace you? Predictions from LinkedIn, Kemosabe, Quantcast, and more

 

The Industrial Era Ended, and So Will the Digital Era

Today digital technology is all the rage because after decades of development it has become incredibly useful. Still, if you look closely, you can already see the contours of its inevitable descent into the mundane. We need to start preparing for a new era of innovation in which different technologies, such as genomics, materials science, and robotics, rise to the fore. You can’t rapidly prototype a quantum computer, a cure for cancer, or an undiscovered material. There are serious ethical issues surrounding technologies such as genomics and artificial intelligence. We’ve spent the last few decades learning how to move fast. Over the next few decades we’re going to have to relearn how to go slow again. So while the mantras for the digital age have been agility and disruption, for this new era of innovation exploration and discovery will once again become prominent. It’s time to think less about hackathons and more about tackling grand challenges.” hbr.org Greg Satell TARA MOORE/GETTY IMAGES

Could a robot ever replace you? Predictions from LinkedIn, Kemosabe, Quantcast, and more

I don’t think my job will be taken over by robots, but that doesn’t mean my role won’t change significantly as a result of AI. Although AI ‘stealing’ jobs is a hot topic, we need to look at the array of benefits tech has had on our working lives, and the solutions AI can offer, helping to remove some of the repetitive elements of work and freeing up our time. Looking at the marketing and advertising industry, AI is perfect for picking up some of those admin and data analysis tasks, but technology will never replace humans. With more time available, people can put a greater focus on developing relationships and being more creative with our campaigns, providing the emotional engagement a robot will never be capable of.” By The Drum Photo Tom Pepper, UK director of marketing solutions at LinkedIn, says he’s not threatened by robots.

AI will create as many jobs as it displaces – report

Our analysis suggests the same will be true of AI, robots and related technologies, but the distribution of jobs across sectors will shift considerably in the process.” PwC said about seven million existing jobs could be displaced by AI from 2017-2037, but about 7.2 million could be created, giving the UK a small net jobs boost of around 200,000. Some sectors would benefit disproportionately, however, with jobs in health increasing by 22%, scientific and technical services by 16% and education by 6%. By contrast manufacturing jobs could fall by 25%, transport and storage by 22% and public administration by 18%, PwC said.bbc.com Source: PwC

4 tech developments that will impact every business this year

1. New global landscape. The global economy is being redefined by frequent political and societal changes, which increase uncertainty and risk for businesses, the report noted. 2. Rethinking business models. That means enterprises must rethink the way they have traditionally run their companies, and embrace new tools like digital technologies and data analytics to evolve and remain relevant. 3. Human and machine collaboration. Advances in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning have already impacted the workforce, and the relationship between humans and machines will likely continue to augment human skills, more so than replace them, the report noted. 4. Digital workplace. The digital workplace involves flexible, connected workspaces, as workers’ digital lives become integrated across their job and home, according to the report.” techrepublic.com/   · Alison DeNisco Rayome Image: iStockphoto/metamorworks

Telling a good innovation story

Appealing to people’s emotions helps new ideas cut through the clutter. A “best beats first” innovator takes the measure of a competitor who may be dominating a market with an acceptable product, and then leaps to the front with something even better. It’s about winning through cunning, instead of using the conventional playbook of scaling a similar product with heavy investment to maintain share. Many innovators told us that the “fast follower” meme is bereft of emotion: no one ever wins people over by talking about their capacity for imitation.” mckinsey.com By Julian Birkinshaw McKinsey Quarterly  Firms Look to Emerging Tech to Drive New Business Models

While CIOs are increasingly being tasked with deploying and overseeing the new capabilities.

They include a set of artificial intelligence technologiescomputer vision, deep learning and natural language generation – aimed at helping firms “build decision engines that increasingly automate operations and engagement processes,” Forrester analysts said in the report. Other key technologies include business networking fabrics, blockchain and other distributed ledgers, edge, quantum and serverless computing, additive manufacturing, and virtual, augmented and mixed reality. Unlike building up a company’s tech foundation by leveraging various IT products and services, CIOs are increasingly being tasked with deploying and overseeing capabilities with the goal of “creating breakthrough business solutions.” Mr. Hopkins said. blogs.wsj.com PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

You May Run From It, But Disruption Is Going to Occur All the Same — Here’s How to Embrace Change

The world is constantly changing and improving, which means any business that does not innovate will be outpaced by the rest of the economy. To ensure your company evolves with the times, consider the following tips: 1. Find inspiration in unlikely places. Some industries, such as health care, endeavor to avoid disruption by placing strict regulations on what and how providers can serve customers. Countless companies have tried to disrupt health care over the years and always encounter plenty of red tape. The latest attempt is a joint venture by Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase. Stay tuned: The disruption there may be big. 2. Stay ahead of technology trends. 3. Lean into disruption as a positive force. In all fairness, disruption is no fun for established businesses. Leaders who are able to view the shifting sands as a prompt to improve their organization and evolve with consumer demands, however, stand to gain financially.” entrepreneur.com  · Per Bylund Image credit: Uber

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

19) Anticipate the growing shifts in life and business. Nobody wants to swim upstream if the current is moving everything in the opposite direction. Clue your fans in.

8 Forecasts to Help You Stay Ahead of the Curve

By 2018, organizations investing in IoT-based cognitive situational awareness or operational sensing will witness improvements of up to 30% in critical process cycle times.

Through 2020, a lack of data science professionals will prevent 75% of organizations from achieving the full potential of IoT.

 

Most Recent Forecasts (of 269,648) Tracked by “Shaping Tomorrow’s” AI robot, Athena, and sorted by PESTLE Categories – Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Lifestyle and Environmental.

Forecast: Global renewable energy prices will be competitive with fossil fuels by 2019 or 2020.

Solar panels reflecting the sun. 3D render with HDRI lighting and raytraced textures.

Trend: Environmental 

Sector: Energy

Insight and Source: “The Twin Revolutions of Clean Energy & AI will conflate as investment and innovation cut the cost of renewable energy, the sector is set to boom” by Dr. Nasser Saidi

Related Forecasts:

  • “Renewable energy will continue to grow more rapidly than fossil fuels over the next two decades.
  • The United States will endeavor to work closely with other countries to help them access and use fossil fuels more cleanly and efficiently and help deploy renewable and other clean energy sources.
  • Renewable transport fuels of non-biological origin, waste-based fossil fuels and renewable electricity will have to be at least 1.5% in 2021.
  • Renewables will be cost competitive with fossil fuels by 2020, but long-term targets could drive demand further and accelerate cost declines.
  • Fossil fuels will remain a key element of the global energy mix over the coming decades but marginal growth is already coming from an increasing array of renewable technologies.”

Forecast: VMware estimates 50% of operations will be cloud-based by 2021.

Trend: Technology 

Sector: Cloud

Insight and Source: “VMware: Decades of hybrid cloud ahead” Antony Adshead Storage Editor

  • VMware estimates 50% of operations will be cloud-based – public and private – by 2021.
  • By 2030 the public cloud will achieve tipping point.
  • Gelsinger said VMware calculations indicate a 19%/52%/29% split between traditional, public and private cloud in that year.
  • Gelsinger said we face, “the biggest transformation in the history of IT” as businesses embark on digital transformation.
  • That may be the case, but by those calculations it’s going to take almost a decade and a half to just about reach halfway.
  • So, another way of reading VMware’s vision as explained at VMworld is that the transformation to the cloud will actually be very long and drawn-out and that for the foreseeable future – probably two decades, even by VMware’s projections – the most mission-critical workloads, such as financial transactions, will not be ready for the off-prem cloud.”

Forecast: 90 percent of organizations will adopt hybrid strategies by 2020.

Trend: Organizations, Technology 

Sector: Cybersecurity, Digital Transformation

Insight and Source: “Cylance® Extends AI-Driven Security to Hybrid Environments and Private Networks With CylanceHYBRID and CylanceON-PREM

Related Forecasts:

  • “By 2018, organizations investing in IoT-based cognitive situational awareness or operational sensing will witness improvements of up to 30% in critical process cycle times.
  • By 2018, more than 25% of Fortune 500 companies will have deployed IT-supported Google Chromebooks across their organizations.
  • By 2021, 50% of large organizations will have integrated disparate business and IT PMOs into enterprise EPMO hubs to enable digital transformation.
  • Fifty-three percent of organizations have already started their RPA journeys that’s expected to increase to 72 percent in the next two years.
  • In Europe the number of data scientists required by organisations by 2020 is expected to be 346,000.”

Forecast: By 2018, organizations investing in IoT-based cognitive situational awareness or operational sensing will witness improvements of up to 30% in critical process cycle times.

Trend: Technology, Internet Of Things

Sector: Information Technology

Insight and Source: “Digital twins help to reshape manufacturing“. by Ashok Kumar

Related Forecasts:

  • “IoT and AI-are expected to have the largest impact on TMT organizations over the next five years.
  • Organizations are predicted to spend US$1.5 billion on IoT security in 2018.
  • Gartner calculates that organizations will spend $1.5 billion on IoT security products and services in 2018.
  • Professional services will account for $946 million of the $1.5 billion in total that organizations will spend on IoT security this year.
  • Through 2020, a lack of data science professionals will prevent 75% of organizations from achieving the full potential of IoT.”

Forecast: In 2017, Roche’s orphan drugs market share accounted for 8.2 percent of the world’s market and is expected to decrease down to 5.2 percent by 2024.

Trend: Healthcare

Sector: Pharmaceuticals

Insight and Source: “Top 20 pharmaceutical companies worldwide by orphan drug revenue market share in 2024 compared to 2017

Related Forecasts:

  • “The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will require Medicare Part D prescription drug plans to implement a seven-day initial prescribing limit beginning in 2019.
  • Yuana Yuana, PhD, in the Department of Biomedical Technology at the University Medical Center Utrecht (The Netherlands) will study Drug delivery strategies using drug-loaded extracellular vesicles generated by microbubble-assisted ultrasound.
  • There is widespread speculation that the Amazon joint venture will attempt to cut out the “middle man” in the US drug prescription and reimbursement system.
  • The FDA should remove Takeda’s gout drug Uloric (febuxostat) from the U.S. market after findings released this March show significant deadly heart risks.
  • The Global Orphan Drug market is estimated at $145.89 million in 2016 and is expected to reach $265.63 million by 2022 growing at a CAGR of 10.5% from 2016 to 2022.”

Forecast: Self-driving cars could save $325 bn by 2020 by avoiding accidents and reducing fuel costs.

Trend: Political, Technical

Sector: Automotive, Autonomous Vehicles

Insight and Source: “Driverless cars: Let technology take the wheel

Related Forecasts:

  • “Coal severance taxes are expected to decline an additional 5.2 percent in FY 2018-19 to $3.6 million and 5.8 percent to $3.4 million in FY 2019-20 as the demand for coal as a fuel for electricity production declines.
  • Fuel tax collections in Colorado are expected to grow 1.6 percent and reach $639.3 million.
  • Sustainable biofuels could provide 27 percent of the world’s total transport fuel by 2050 and avoid around 2.1 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per year.
  • The Trump administration’s decision to weaken fuel efficiency standards could have “serious consequences” for Colorado’s effort to meet its clean energy goals by increasing carbon dioxide emissions from the state’s vehicle fleet by about 1.9 million tons a year by 2030.
  • Weakening fuel oil prices as a result of IMO 2020 could see oil competing again in power generation.”

Forecast: Grouping and infectious disease screening market is projected to reach US$ 7,078.3 Mn by 2026 from US$ 3,079.8 Mn in 2017.

Trend: Healthcare

Sector: Healthcare, Disease

Insight and Source: “Global Blood Typing, Grouping and Infectious Disease Screening Market 2016-2018 & 2026” PRNewswire 

Related Forecasts:

  • “A4NH researchers from LSHTM are working with colleagues from Africa Rice and others to explore how rice intensification can be achieved without increasing the risk of disease.
  • Advances and research in congenital heart disease and significant research funding for various projects are creating enormous opportunities for the global congenital heart disease market in coming years.
  • Environmental groups said they support the NDP’s criticism of open-pen fish farms and a new requirement for Aboriginal consent, but the 2022 deadline is too far off and threatens to further endanger coastal salmon with the risk of disease.
  • The global Polycystic Kidney Disease Treatment market is valued at million US$ in 2017 and will reach million US$ by the end of 2025.
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that the health of millions could be threatened by increases in malaria, water-borne disease and malnutrition.”

Forecast: The global edge computing market is expected to reach$ 20,495.24 million by 2026 from$ 7,983.61 million in 2017 at a CAGR of 11%.

Trend: Technology

Sector: Information Technology

Insight and Source: “HPE to Invest $4 Billion for Advancement of Edge Computing“.Zacks Equity Research.

Related Forecasts:

  • A substantial portion of the estimated 46 billion industrial and enterprise devices connected in 2023 will rely on edge computing.
  • More than 20% of global enterprises will have deployed serverless computing technologies by 2020.
  • Yale’s next wave of quantum computing research will get a boost from a $16 million grant from the U.S. Army Research Office.
  • Global Cloud Computing market size was 36700 million US$ and it is expected to reach 285300 million US$ by the end of 2025.
  • Cloud computing spending is expected to grow at a whopping rate of 6 x the rate of IT spending through 2020 and it is found to be growing at 4.5 times the rate of IT spending since 2009.

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

19) Anticipate the growing shifts in life and business. Nobody wants to swim upstream if the current is moving everything in the opposite direction. Clue your fans in.

What Does It Take to Capitalize on Digital Transformations?

Businesses are changing right before our eyes as the digital transformation takes place around the world.

 

Technology- and data-based transformation has arrived in full force. And if you think that your company or industry is immune, think again.

 

Robots Might Not Take Your Job—But They Will Probably Make It Boring

“For many support workers, robotic surgery is much less satisfying than open surgery. There’s a huge amount of solitary setup work to allow the robot to work, then there’s a big sprint to get the robot draped and docked to the patient. And then…everyone watches the procedure on TV. While the surgeon is operating via an immersive 3-D control console, the scrub folds his arms and waits. The nurse sits in the corner at a PC entering data, or sometimes checking email or Facebook. There’s not a lot to do, but you always have to be ready. Compared to open surgery, it’s clean, safe, and dull work.” www.wired.com/story/robots- Matt Beane ROBERT DEYRAIL/GETTY IMAGES

AI cancer detectors

“Researchers suggest artificial intelligence is now better and faster at detecting cancer than clinicians. Squamous carcinoma. An AI system distinguishes dangerous skin lesions from benign ones. More accurate than dermatologists. An AI system developed by a team from Germany, France and the US can diagnose skin cancer more accurately than dermatologists. In the study, the software was able to accurately detect cancer in 95% of images of cancerous moles and benign spots, whereas a team of 58 dermatologists was accurate 87% of the time.” theguardian.com/technology/    Steve Gschmeissner/Getty Images/Science P

5 Leadership Traits Required For Digital Transformation Success

“Businesses are changing right before our eyes as the digital transformation takes place around the world. And yet many dinosaur leaders, as I like to call them, are still in these businesses risking extinction if they can’t adapt to this ever-changing environment. It’s true that leaders must be willing to accept change in order to remain competitive. However, I believe it goes even further than that. Change-agile leaders must be forward-thinkers who believe that the future is important above all else. They must be able to change quickly and fluctuate as the business world changes – sometimes on the daily. 1. Change-Agile Leaders Have Clear Purpose  2. Forward-Thinking Opportunists 3.They Fix What’s Broken 4. Risk-Takers and Experimenters 5. They Strive for Partnership.” forbes.com Daniel Newman Shutterstock

The Right Way to Try to Predict the Future

“If, for instance, a company has a product development cycle of 18 months, then it should look at least 24 months to 36 months into the future.  Why?  Because we know that if it spots any emerging trend or opportunity that may emerge in less than 18 months, it probably won’t be able to respond (since its own product development cycle is 18 months long).  With this in mind we can say that if you are doing trend spotting or future forecasting, you should look at a future from 1.5 to 2 times your product development cycle. There are caveats to this of course.  In an industry with aggressive competition and shrinking product development and product life cycles, you may want to look further out to skip generations.  In other, longer life cycle industries you may want to consider the life expectancy of your product.” inc.com/jeffrey-phillips  Jeffrey Phillips Getty Images

Competing in the age of disruption

”Technology- and data-based transformation has arrived in full force. And if you think that your company or industry is immune, think again. Only twelve percent of the Fortune 500 companies who were in business in 1955 are still around. Before stepping down as CEO of Cisco Systems in June of 2015, John Chambers spoke at a conference and bluntly told attendees, “40 percent of businesses …unfortunately, will not exist in a meaningful way in 10 years. If I’m not making you sweat, I should be. In an era of constant disruption and economic volatility, more and more companies are being forced to confront the reality of diminishing profits, stagnating growth and organizational uncertainty. Regaining the agility to compete comes down to more than simply cutting costs. It’s about embracing new ways to drive cost-consciousness and transparency, identifying mispent (sic) resources in order to unlock new sources of revenue and growth, and creating an operating model that can deliver on business strategy while supporting a culture of continuous transformation.” partneredcontent.fortune.com/accenture/arc-of-agility/ Paid Content from Accenture Strategy . The Foundry. Meredith Corp.

Turo, The Airbnb Of Car Rental Companies, Offers Corvettes, Ferraris, Teslas

“Turo has a stable of owners who want to rent out their vehicles. Then there are people like me who want to try different makes of cars. Based in San Francisco, Turo makes its money on the margin between what the car owner charges it and what the rental customer is willing to pay, less its costs for insurance, overhead, etc. The company has been around since 2009, but under a different name, RelayRides. It was rebranded in 2015, and has grown exponentially. Turo is now in 49 states (not New York, for insurance reasons) and has about six million customers and 250,000 cars up for rent, according to a company spokeswoman. Satellite operations are now in 56 countries. Once I installed the Turo app on my iPhone and signed up for the service, I put in the dates that I wanted my Corvette, and where I wanted to pick it up.” forbes.com Jim Clash One of Turo’s Corvettes for rent.

How Cloud Can Boost Innovation

“Hosting applications on cloud platforms is becoming increasingly common, if not an enterprise standard. Among the potential benefits are rapid scalability and elasticity—enabling systems to grow with changing business demands while minimizing costs—as well as on-demand availability, providing agility and faster deployment. Such benefits can be particularly valuable for innovation, which may help explain why cloud computing is growing so quickly. Worldwide, public cloud services revenue is expected to reach $411 billion by 2020, up from $306 billion this year. Any time spent on capacity planning, procurement, or waiting for requested infrastructure means less time spent finding solutions to problems and delivering value to the business, says Ragu Gurumurthy, principal and chief innovation officer with Deloitte Consulting LLP. “Every business needs to be digital to survive,” Gurumurthy says. “The cloud offers increased agility and speed to market as well as lower costs and access to cloud-native technologies.” http://deloitte.wsj.com/cio/ Sponsored Content. CIO Insights and Analysis from Deloitte

MIT’s new tech turns power plants and data centers into water sources

“A typical 600-megawatt power plant used at half capacity to handle peak power demand uses as much water as 100,000 people would in a year. Cooling towers at power plants use massive amounts of water–in the U.S., around a trillion gallons a year–to cool down high-temperature steam. Right now, much of that water is just goes back into the atmosphere as plumes of vapor. Varanasi estimates at a 600-megawatt plant, the new technology could save 150 million gallons of water per year.For power plants, or other buildings with cooling towers, using the new equipment could save millions on water bills, in some cases. Industry could reuse the captured water directly. But because the cooling towers create distilled water, it could also be treated further and used for drinking water. “If you install a cooling tower, it’s like doing desalination,” says Varanasi, who estimates that the technology could offset the need for building 70% of new desalination plants in the next decade.” fastcompany.com  · By Adele Peters

Who Knew Blockchain Could Make Government This Easy? This Italian CIO, That’s Who.

“With blockchain technology, South Tyrol can create a chain of certification that authenticates and maintains people’s data indefinitely — instead of having to verify every instance of someone’s data each time a citizen enters their personal information. Moreover, Gasslitter believes blockchain can act as an integration layer to help simplify the province administration’s IT landscape. He says, “We have more than 1,000 different software applications to store and use citizens’ data. Every agency is like a small kingdom and doesn’t share data. Our goal is to simplify processes and increase transparency. We’re creating a model of data sharing within South Tyrol that we hope can be scaled across Italy.” medium.com/sap-innovation-spotlight/ robin_meyerhoff 

Steps:

6)   Anticipate changing circumstances and economic cycles.

7)   Persist and pivot to navigate external threats and opportunities.

17) Sketch out your trajectory in 5-year timeframes.  Will we fall into another recession?  Absolutely.  Will you be ready this time with future-proofed strategies?

19) Anticipate the growing shifts in life and business. Nobody wants to swim upstream if the current is moving everything in the opposite direction. Clue your fans in.