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It’s really interesting to see the 5 areas of improvement SIA is asking consumers for feedback on in its AppChallenge. In addition to your point about how these categories may not be the biggest issues facing consumers, I wonder how well positioned consumers are to provide solutions to these ‘behind the scenes’ issues like tracking inventory or tracking food and beverages. That is, these are business problems with data and proprietary internal analyses – is this the best way to leverage open source innovation and their AppChallenge? Perhaps more consumer-facing, in-flight experience issues are better suited for this feedback and idea submission mechanism.

The 90% statistic makes it clear how advantageous it is to use AI to inform and expedite target identification. One question that arises for me (outside of the internal talent and funding issues) is the vulnerability of AI and electronic messaging to hacking by opposing forces, who could alter the output and/or inner workings of the tool. It is therefore still critical to involve the human element and continue to train on target identification. However, in the future, I imagine training will also have to include how to weigh AI data with the human element and make those critical decisions.

On November 13, 2018, ka commented on 3-D Printing: Disney’s Latest “Wow Factor” :

You raise some really tough questions with IP infringement and 3D printing. While the company does review YouTube, e.g., for pirated videos, will the company go after those releasing 3D printing instructions for their IP? And, in a world full of illicit 3D printed copies, is there some special characteristic, some ‘magic’ that Disney can imbue in its legitimate product in order to draw demand?

As for your point about how to speed up the 3D printing process – perhaps Disney can incorporate a ‘layer’ of 3D printing onto mass produced product, so that the costs and lead times are reduced. E.g., for a Mickey plush, instead of customizing and 3D printing the entire unit, they could take a preexisting Mickey plush and add specific features with 3D printing.

Lastly, Disney is precious with its IP. How much customization will they really allow? I would guess that the customization would be limited to a select menu of Disney-created options (e.g., for a Mickey plush, create a menu of options with a pirate hat, eyepatch, sorcerers hat, Christmas vest, e.g.) as opposed to consumers designing their own desired customizations.

On November 13, 2018, ka commented on LEGO: Leveraging the Building Blocks of Open Innovation :

I like the idea of LEGO Ideas from both the recreational kid user, master builder, and company point of view.

For the recreational kid user, it provides inspiration and a cool window into what other people can build/imagine with their LEGO sets. To Sam’s point above, I agree that LEGO’s strength is in its offline, tactile, freeform play. If, however, we view LEGO Ideas and other LEGO-owned digital platform time spent as a portion of existing screentime (as opposed to additive), one might prefer their kid to be on a safe, closed LEGO site than on the major destination – YouTube.

For the master builder, it provides a sandbox to create and share your masterpieces and see what other artists are building. It also provides hope that maybe your idea will be implemented!

And for LEGO, it provides new ideas, shortens the product development cycle, and builds brand affinity and share of heart among your most dedicated users.

On November 13, 2018, ka commented on Adidas and Additive Manufacturing :

I love the idea of customized shoes, and like you said, despite the $300 price tag, there is a market for it (although resale is a little tricky since it’s so tailored to that unique foot!). What I wonder is the time it takes in between the consumer putting in an order and actually receiving the shoe. To your point, it would be neat in the future if you could go into a retail location, get your foot ‘scanned’ and leave 90 minutes later with an actual shoe. As for whether this is a market driven by hype, the performance of the shoe has to have some benefit for it to withstand an initial novelty phase. I think this is achievable, though, given consumers’ affinity for customization in footwear (e.g., design your own Nike’s online, stepping on a Dr. Scholl’s machine in CVS to tell you which insert to purchase).

This is a fascinating topic, and your point that Starbucks has at its disposal data for 90mm transactions a week illustrates how well positioned the corporation is to employ AI. It would be neat if now Starbucks can take the learnings from their AI segmentation to inform other aspects of the business outside of push notification marketing, including their product offering (e.g., new product development, geographic product mix, etc.) or even ATL marketing efforts. An outstanding question for me: I wonder how much of the success of the targeted campaign (over the traditional segmentation email campaign) is due to (1) this is reaching people largely on mobile (as opposed to desktop) and (2) the ability to geolocate customers and ‘push’ them to a nearby location. Is the AI-driven, occasion-based segmentation really superior to its former approach, or is it the format that is in part assisting it?