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On November 14, 2018, LPB commented on Sotheby’s and machine learning for the arts :

Thank you DigitalGansta! Much of how art is valued is tied to the identity of the artist himself/herself. We have historically seen how a prominent art collector buying up work from a promising young artist can increase prices, as can the death of an accomplished artist. How will technologies that evaluate a work of art purely on its aesthetic change the way the art industry values pieces? Similarly to your reference of Duchamp, how will pieces that change the history of art be valued?

In response to your research on machines creating art, I find it difficult to imagine such works really being of value. We as emotional beings have the greatest experiences with art when a painting or a melody evokes an emotion that connects on a soul level. Machines create output based on inputs – but some of the greatest pieces of art (music, poetry, paintings, etc.) come from the heart of their creators. Machines are getting better at mimicking the human brain, but how could a machine match the emotional depth of a true artist? Would we want to live in a world where that exists?

On November 14, 2018, LPB commented on UNICEF: Open innovation to tackle humanitarian crises :

Very interesting! In addition to many of your insightful cautions, UNICEF also is working with limited time and resources in times of crises, which can exacerbate problems of rushing to link with organizations that do not share the same underlying moral imperative. As we have seen in some of our cases, they can be unintended consequences of well-intentioned decisions. As UNICEF opens itself up to collaborate with other organizations, startups and leverage emerging technologies, I agree that they should be thoughtful about the long-term consequences. These new technologies hold a lot of promise, but without a strong connection with the population they serve and close monitoring by outside parties, there could be unintended harm.

Along with Mike, I find it very interesting how this tangible product is venturing into the intangible. My main concern with VR and other purely digital platforms is that if you remove the blocks, is the product no longer LEGO? I believe part of why LEGO has continued to exist in the toy market is because of the universal satisfaction children get from the ability to physically create, destroy and create again. It’s hard to imagine how children could benefit from the motor skill development on a digital platform. To me, removing the blocks leaves you with just another digital game but with the name LEGO on it. Open innovation seems like an exciting method to learn how to better serve the interests of their suppliers, retailers and consumers, but I would caution against sacrificing what makes LEGO LEGO when exploring other digital platforms for their consumers.

In the short-term, Nordstrom can continue to optimize their online experience while promoting brands that are not available on Amazon. Big traditional retailers like Nordstrom are lagging behind pure e-commerce players in regards to user experience and ease of online shopping. An optimized futuristic storefront that seamlessly integrates with their online platform (similar to Bonobos) could give Nordstrom plenty more runway and competitive advantage in the coming years.

As a consumer, this product seems incredibly useful for both cost savings and reducing footprint, but I would be more inclined to do a 1-time diagnostic rather than continue to pay for the product over time. I’d image that large family households with fluctuating energy uses may benefit from long-term use, but ultimately once behaviors shift towards more optimal usage, the product’s value diminishes significantly. In what way can this product continue to meet customer needs over time? Perhaps there is opportunity to expand beyond appliance energy monitoring and bundle with other products such as home security software.

On November 13, 2018, LPB commented on Printing: Speed :

Very cool! It seems to me that this product better serves pain points in the prototype phase more so than in product production, given the high time and cost barriers with prototyping and the fairly low demand for customization among consumers. Given that this 3D printer has limitations on inputs, could widespread adoption of this technology limit innovation? On the consumer side, I am weary that Adidas has overspent on early versions of this technology – like buying up thousands of the iPhone 8 knowing that the iPhone X is around the corner. What is the benefit in the eyes of consumers in buying a 3D printed shoe versus a production line shoe if the consumer has no need for customization?

On November 13, 2018, LPB commented on Printer-to-Table: The Next Food Movement? :

Thank you for researching this interesting product – my sense is that although the technology is promising, the current product has too many obstacles to be cost and time efficient. My main question is how significantly this product varies from kitchen appliances that already exist in homes, and if the added functionality of specific nutrition profiles and identical output are really solving consumer pain points. To me, cooking is a central and joyful activity in the homes of many and is unlikely to be replaced by this technology, particularly as it exists today. I could however imagine a more evolved version of this product in commercial kitchens at large institutions like universities, hospitals and prisons.