Great post, Ken! I HATE tax season – even when being helped by TurboTax. I have found TurboTax to be very useful and intuitive, but only for when filing simple filings. I had the pleasure of filing many different state returns because of my time in consulting. I think this just about broke TurboTax, making my life very difficult. If tax codes continue to become more complex and as millennials redefine working norms (e.g., contract work) I wonder how TurboTax will keep up. Is there a certain point where it becomes too complicated for an untrained citizen to file their taxes? Will we all have to use a tax professional at some point?
Taylor – great post. It seems like Kaiser is doing a great job at making strides to improve the painful process of seeing a doctor. I have had incredibly poor experiences lately with seeing doctors. One example is a year ago, I had the flu and used United Healthcare’s telemedicine service so that I could (hopefully) get some tamiflu. I spoke with the MD through the video camera and after 5 minutes, the MD strongly suggested I go straight to the ER because she had no way of knowing any of my vitals. I went to the ER and was told that the teledoc was just covering for herself because of the liability of giving bad advice. I felt like I was scammed! I like that Kaiser is taking the old model (real locations with nurses / nurse practitioners) so that in person analysis can be done, supplemented by the MD on the screen. This model seems much more realistic in today’s healthcare / legal environment.
Really great post, Jessie. Very interesting stuff. It seems to me that technology can (and should) be used in ways within our religious communities. There simply are very few reasons why thing such as giving, communications, and other organizational engagement should not be at pace with other for profit or non-profit standards. That said, I do think there is a risk that others have also highlighted above. That risk is the consumption of content as a substitute for attendance. For most of time, the church, temple, etc have been a gathering place for like-minded individuals. This sense of community is core to most religions and is also a much needed human need. I would argue that in an age where we are incredibly (digitally) connected, we are at the same time one of the most relationally disconnected generations in human history. This reality, supported by a Cornell research study , is a bit shocking and concerning. I would argue that for churchgoers, reinvesting in this community is a potential solution to this growing problem. To that end, I believe that religious communities should focus on how technology can bring people through the doors to engage with others as opposed to encouraging them to consume content from their own homes.
 Cornell Study: http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/2011/11/americans-circle-confidantes-has-shrunk-two-people
Very interesting read! I am a huge lover of Domino’s and enjoyed getting to learn more about their investments in digital technology. I frequently use their mobile app and have been very impressed with its responsiveness and transparency. The experience is so painless that it encourages me to order from Domino’s more frequently than I otherwise would. Your post got me thinking about their traditional storefronts. I am curious to know how much business is done through carry-out versus delivery. I would assume delivery far outweighs the carry-out. It makes me think that maybe in the near future, Domino’s could reduce their real estate expenses by operating strategically located kitchens that do not offer the carry-out option. These kitchens could be small and in less valuable real estate spots (i.e., not street facing) and could help the team focus solely on cooking the pizza and the logistics of delivery. I wonder if this makes financial sense or if it will ever be a reality for Domino’s?
Great article! Really enjoyed the perspective on the product itself and the focus on water. Initially I guessed that this post would be covering the packaging of coca-cola products and the impacts of all the plastics manufactured and the subsequent impact of those plastics on the environment when not recycled. While we as consumers have come a long way in changing our habits (e.g., recycling bottles), we still have got a long way to go. I wonder to what extent coca-cola can look to innovate on the current plastics and look to more biodegradable goods. In the emerging markets, recycling is not done consistently and instead of trying to change consumer behaviors, coca-cola could potentially look to the source of the problem (plastic bottle) to help solve this issue.
Rob P, thanks for your submission! Really good post on an iconic company and city – both of which were important to our country’s early growth.
I wonder to what extent businesses are focused more on air pollution as opposed to landfills because of public perception. I would guess that the public is more sensitive to carbon emissions because air pollution is generally what we associate with global warming. The poor effects that we observe from landfills don’t seem to be as top-of-mind socially.
I read an interesting article the other day that discussed Sweden’s system of burning trash. Not only is it more eco-friendly, but it also serves as a source of energy. More recently, the US has warmed up to this idea and is starting to move away from landfills and towards this method of burning trash. Link is below if you are interested.
I think in many cases it can be most insightful to look at comparisons to see how the problem can be solved most effectively. For sustainable cities, we can look to Zurich, Switzerland – the world’s most sustainable city, according to Arcadis.  While there is much to learn from other cities, the reality of local politics and public sentiment must be considered. While we may have a lot to learn from our European friends, we must acknowledge the political reality in the United States and ways to bring awareness, which can force our politicians to drive change.
Great post, Kenny! For Nike, I think it will be imperative that their sustainability is driven through design. I think the Flyknit example is a fantastic one. They were able to create a new design that worked well for their customers (and looked good)! This innovation is no longer just a better product, but also a product with a great story to tell. I think this combination is a powerful one as Nike shifts consumer mindsights to a more eco-friendly perspective.
Kamoy, great article and research. I wonder to what extent the cocoa bean can be artificially created in such a way that both the flavor and textures are replicated. Given the recent successes in lab grown red meat substitutes, I’ve got to believe chocolate is also within the realm of the possible.
Future of Meat: http://gizmodo.com/the-future-will-be-full-of-lab-grown-meat-1720874704