Subscription Airfares, No-Code Contests, Artificial Whale Poo, in this Edition of Top Ten

published3 months ago
4 min read

Welcome to our latest crack of innovation inspiration curated from reliable industry and academic sources. As usual, we offer a random crawl across the world of global innovation and exponential technology. In addition to our ten items and associated upcoming trade events below, we also want to highlight Clarivate's 2022 Top 100 Global Innovators Report.

But way more importantly, we take our hats off to the valiant Ukranian people and stand with the many around the globe, including our library, publisher and research friends, who say NO to this war and say YES to a return of the sovereignty and safety of Ukraine.

We need global innovative thinkers and do-ers more than ever. ❤️ 🇺🇦❤️


AI-Generated Andy Warhol Narrates New Netflix Series

#FutureOfArt, #AI

We like to look at the intersection (or collision) of AI and art, and here is Netflix with a new series called The Andy Warhol Diaries, wherein an AI-fabricated voice facsimile of the iconic artist reads from his personal writings. AI voice generation is improving at an exponential pace, as this voice generators hot list reveals. We don't know which particular software package was used in this case, but chances are it might have been Sonantic, which claims to have cracked the code on 'emotive' voice and AI that can flirt, reminiscent of Scarlett Johannson's role in the movie "Her"


UPS Debuts Streetwear and Merchandise Collection

#FutureOfFashion, #DEI

UPS used to ask "What can brown do for you?" The new groove from one of the world's largest couriers is "Be Unstoppable" which is emblazoned across their new line of wearables. Unveiled at NY's recent Fashion Week, this initiative has a DEI angle as well. Proceeds from the limited edition apparel will be donated to InTheBlk, which supports black fashion entrepreneurs.


Alaska Airlines launches first-ever flight subscription service in the US

#FutureOfTravel, #BusinessModelInnovation

In the travel and aviation sectors it's always interesting to watch Alaska Air. Last October, they launched an investment arm called Star Ventures to forge technology and business models to meet NetZero goals. Now they are introducing a twist on their current business model, building on the mega trend that even retailers and restaurateurs are experimenting with - subscriptions. The origin of the move appears to be a push from their California customers who frequently fly in-state routes. We'll see if this customer relationship strategy turns out to be sticky.


Cornell Engineers Aim to Power Robots with ‘Embodied Energy’

#FutureOfScience/Research, #Robotics, #BioMimicry

In the category of 'kewl', an example of bio-memetic engineering from a group of 11 scientists led by Cornell University's Dr. Cameron Aubin, Dr. Jennifer Lewis and Dr. Robert Shepherd, are exploring robots whose parts, especially the power centers and batteries, mimic organismic multi-functionality. Or in their own words,

"Whereas most untethered robots use batteries to store energy and power their operation, recent advancements in energy-storage techniques enable chemical or electrical energy sources to be embodied directly within the structures and materials used to create robots, rather than requiring separate battery packs."


Zapier Announces National No-Code Day and Contest

#FutureOfSoftware, #StrategicInnovation

In the world of disruptive innovation, getting ideas tested quickly is king. And nothing's better (and less buggy) than the code you don't have to write. Supporting this trend are workflow automation companies like Zapier who are celebrating and showcasing No-Code software development. Readers, mark your calendars and dance a jig on March 11th (No-Code Day). You might also want to check out Zapier's coming innovation prize and Hackathon, and the following trade events.


FIVE Examples of Innovation at Airports

#FutureOfTravel, #FutureOfAirports, #Design

This week, from Future Travel Experience magazine, we highlight five movers and shakers in the space of re-imagining the airport experience. Enjoy. (Not mentioned in the article but quite recent, also check out this story about nextgen plane robotic taxis from Amsterdam airport.) Plus, this forthcoming event:


Port of Valencia to Host Autonomous Container Transport System

#FutureOfShipping, #Sustainability

From the Logistics and Supply Chain worlds, and the land of delicious Paella (Valencia, España ole!), a pilot of autonomous container systems. The team has engineered a hyperloop-based transport system, fully electric and energy efficient. This represents a critical test of future sustainable port operations. (In other earth cooling shipping news, Maersk is partnering with GCMD to support the shipping and port industry's decarbonization agenda.) And finally, if you want more on this topic, two events coming this month.


How Shake Shack Learned to Meet Their Customers When and Where They Want

#FutureOfRestaurants, #RetailInnovation, #Ux

Another example of pandemic inspired (or necessitated) innovation, the U.S.-based ShakeShack brand has expansion plans in 2022 and an aspiration to be more 'connected' and 'diverse'. This appears to mean an omni-channel digital strategy so that hungry consumers can book and order anywhere and pick up anywhere it's convenient. Not transformative innovation by any means, but it certainly points to 'new normals' in the fast food and quick casual dining spaces.


Innovation Focus Shifting Post-Pandemic (Journal Article)

#FutureOfBusinessModels, #FutureOfScience/Research, #MetaInnovation

Just published (full text), this research offers a glimpse at how innovation goals might have changed through the pandemic. The authors use bibliometric analysis of the scholarly literature prior to, and after the pandemic, to generate some side-by-side graphs and charts. A big shift in theme seems to be renewed interest in open learning, open innovation, knowledge networks, new forms of stakeholder engagement and agile business model innovation. The latter makes a lot of sense, given the multiple existential crises confronting enterprises everywhere.


Scientists Look To Restore Ocean Ecosystems With Artificial Whale Poo

#Sustainability, #BioMimicry

Reporting from New Scientist magazine on a project to test the efficacy of seeding ocean waters with synthesized whale feces (yuck we know), to restore reefs and ecosystems. According to this global research team, whales "naturally fertilize the ocean surface when they defecate, leading to phytoplankton blooms which can feed billions of fish". The work, like many geo-engineering projects is not without detractors due to the potential for unintended consequences.

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