Giannis Slimpi

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On November 15, 2018, Giannis Slimpi commented on Not just winging it: predicting airfare at KAYAK :

Great article! I didn’t know about this functionality of KAYAK but I immediately checked it out and in fact I just booked my winter tickets because of it!
I think this algorithm gives KAYAK a great competitive advantage and in my opinion, the company should heavily focus on its further improvement.
One disadvantage that I noticed is that for complex, multi-city routes, it takes quite some time to come up with a recommendation (<10 min). So investing in computational power, especially as more and more data become available (and hopefully as more and more customers use the website) computational power requirements will increase.
Also, if the company is confident that it can find a way to expand this feature in hotels and car rentals, I would be a highly enthusiastic supporter of the expansion!

Great post! I really can’t wait for the “choose your ending” functionality!

Addressing your concerns, your thoughts on how Netflix can obtain more data is very interesting. We are moving to an era where data is one of the most valuable resources needed for a company’s success and, undoubtedly, the more data the merrier. I think that in order to obtain this data, Netflix has to leverage its size and either partner with another large online company and share their databases (e.g. with Walmart) or to diversify its business, in order to observe the customers’ behavior in other aspects of their lives. This way, Netflix will be able to determine what are the general preferences of its customers (e.g. do they like adventure and/or sports? Do they have kids? etc) and offer them an improved customer experience.

Regarding the international audiences, I think that Netflix should focus on the content of the movies that a particular viewer prefers. As a non-US viewer, usually the country of origin of a movie doesn’t really make a difference to me!

On November 15, 2018, Giannis Slimpi commented on The Benefits of Additive Manufacturing at BIA :

Thank you for the great article! Undoubtedly, additive manufacturing already plays a big role in the automotive manufacturing process and is expected to be central in the industry in the future.

Regarding your concern relevant to outsourcing vs developing in-house capabilities, I agree with the answer above that we should examine the company’s investment abilities as well as the cost of outsourcing.

Given the lack of this information my thoughts are the following: The 3D printing industry is still booming with huge performance and output quality improvements being achieved every year. Thus, I would avoid investing now on such a machine and instead I would try to temporarily team up with an external partner for some years. When, in turn, a slowdown in the technology’s improvement will be noticed, I would start developing internal capabilities.

On November 15, 2018, Giannis Slimpi commented on Additive Manufacturing in Construction :

Wow, 3 days to build a house is very impressive! And it also looks nice!
One important concern that I have is regarding the safety of the actual building. Are structures created through 3D printings structurally sound? Also, how can we handle structures in areas where we need good foundations, or in earthquake-prone areas? This, in combination to the open points that you mention (e.g. rough ages, quality issues, high cost of the 3D printer) make me believe that we are far away from the wide adoption of 3D printing in construction.
Nevertheless, being a civil engineer myself, I am convinced that it is the future, especially for non-residential buildings. If the problems of safety, cost and quality are resolved, the construction industry will focus more on the trend. And if that happens, regulations will adapt overtime. Don’t forget that regulation always lags behind innovation!

On November 15, 2018, Giannis Slimpi commented on Open Innovation Initiatives in UNHCR Refugee Communities :

Great article! I have actually worked extensively on the refugee front and in close collaboration with UNHCR over the last 2 years and so this topic is particularly familiar to me.

Regarding stakeholders’ engagement, unfortunately government bodies are not really active and/or usefull in the topic, at least in South Europe. Thus, in my opinion the key stakeholders that need to be engaged are local non-profits and the refugees themselves, who experience the problems at first hand. If we manage to convince these two parties regarding the platform’s value, we could go a long way!

Also, regarding the potential impact, in fact UNHCR is equally concerned about both short-term and long-term issues and so, any kind of solution would be highly helpful. In addition, throughout my experience I have noticed that most of the major problems that refugee camps face are very similar across different locations, so locality will not be a problem!

On November 15, 2018, Giannis Slimpi commented on HackerOne: Using Open Innovation to Foster a Cyber Secure Environment :

I think that if this business scales and becomes relevant for the society, the employment state of the hackers (contractors vs full time employees) will spark a lot of debate. This is not only because of the accounting standards that each country may employs but, perhaps more importantly, due to responsibility issues. Hackers get exposed to very confidential information and the big question here is who is currently responsible for any information leak, the hackers or HackerOne? Ultimately, I think both should be held accountable and thus a more formal employment relationship (i.e. full-time employees) should be formed.

Further building on the above, I would like to express my moral concerns regarding the business model. Is it okay to encourage individuals to access confidential information of companies and of consumers’ personal data? Even if hackers have good intentions, is it completely safe to help them acquire data that can lead to significant financial returns to them if exploited unethically?