Mike Sobolewski

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In regards to digitalgangsta’s point above and to one of the questions in your last paragraph, I think they challenge for LEGO will be to find a way to incorporate their standard bricks with new AI/VR/ in the same way that the incorporating their bricks with robotics with Mindstorms in 1998. Your essay does a good job of outlining some of the areas that LEGO has innovated so far, and you also bring up a good point that parents are an incredibly important target audience in the toy purchasing behavior. Likely LEGO will have to not only capture the excitement of children, but also show to parents that they are helpful in the growth of their children (dexterity, creativity, teamwork, etc) in order to show that there is value for both parties.

On November 13, 2018, Mike Sobolewski commented on New Story: Remodeling Affordable Housing Through 3D Printing :

This is an interesting topic and a well written essay. I’d be curious to know about the changes of building/transporting The Vulcan as well. From my personal point of view, I think it’s great to use this technology if New Story can make it widely available, but even if they can get it to a point where it’s cost effective, I wonder how widely they’ll be able to spread it.

Their approach to democratizing this technology is very interesting as well. It will be interesting to see if any competitors come up in this space and what that does for the overall effort.

On November 13, 2018, Mike Sobolewski commented on The Future is Customized Chocolate :

A 100+ year old chocolate company isn’t generally someone you would think would try to be on the cusp of innovation and product development. I think the cost effectiveness will be the big decision maker as to whether or not 3D printing eventually becomes the “new normal” for chocolate, or whether it will just be a fad. While generally I would argue that most consumer products are headed towards more customization, I feel that the majority of chocolate eaters view it as more of a commodity, and would likely be unwilling to pay much more for a highly specialized piece of chocolate. We’ll see what happens!

On November 13, 2018, Mike Sobolewski commented on Don’t Give Up the Ship: A Smarter Approach to Maintenance in the US Navy :

Joseph, I think this is an interesting read. You touch on this a bit at the end, but my bet is that there are many other industries that would benefit from the switch to conditions-based maintenance. Do you have a good sense of how much of CDM is expected to be reporting on data gathered from sensors (e.g. “This air conditioning filter must now be replaced”) versus how much of it is using machine learning/predictive analytics (e.g. “Due to past data we are expecting that this filter will need to be replaced in 8 days”).

On November 13, 2018, Mike Sobolewski commented on NewYork-Presbyterian: Becoming the Hospital of the Future :

Ricardo, I think your essay is very interesting. Now is an interesting time for healthcare IT, where hospital systems have been accumulating data for years, and now we are on the cusp of truly generating value from that data. I think one of the challenges we may continue is that in order for the CLOC to function, it needs to be looking at some patient data. The big question is: what is the source of that data? Of course, some of that data can be pulled from monitors that are hooked up to the patients, removing the need for human intervention. But what about the data that, today, is only put into the electronic medical record by the physician [e.g. like diagnosis, treatment plan, etc]? How can we make that a less human intensive process so that the innovative machine learning solutions like the CLOC are able to function without needing the up front cost of physician data entry?

On November 13, 2018, Mike Sobolewski commented on Open Innovation at Lego – The Back Beat in “Everything is Awesome” :

As a huge LEGO fan as a kid, I find this really fascinating. It’s noteworthy to see how LEGOs, which are predominately physical toys, have been able to leverage the digital world to get into open innovation. It’s interesting that your recommendation is to focus on the innovation with suppliers and retailers — my immediate thought would be doubling down on the connection with their end users, but I can see how the other folks in the supply chain play a big part.

To your final question, my bet is that LEGO attempts to bridge the gap between their physical toys and VR, not making the physical bricks entirely obsolete. It seems similar to the leap that was made by the LEGO Mindworks product that was released many years ago, which introduced motors and other mechanical items that allowed children to program the LEGO creations to move.