Samuel Hill

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On November 14, 2018, Samuel Hill commented on Machine Learning in the Fragmented Construction Industry :

Great article! Thanks for sharing.
It is surprising how broad is the potential opportunity of machine learning within the construction industry. In addition, I believe that the application of each feature can be replicated not only in other industries but also across geographies. For example, Smartvid could be applied in many other industries, such as mining or industrial goods manufacturing, and thus improve the safety conditions of its workplaces. This would result in a sharply decrease in the amount of fatal accidents that those industries currently experience, especially in emerging markets where regulation is far from optimal.

On November 14, 2018, Samuel Hill commented on Open Innovation at Tesla – Time for a Change? :

Great article! Thanks for sharing.
It’s really impressive how Tesla is driving innovation not only through its products but also in its way of working. However, I believe Tesla will not achieve its (supposedly) well-intended program of fostering innovation in the electric car industry for two reasons.
First, although electric cars seems as a really attractive industry to apply innovation mechanisms, it is already led by Tesla, which is so sure about its leadership that it proposes an open innovation policy. Therefore, potential competitors may be reluctant to even enter the industry, as they will be defeated by this strong auto manufacturer.
Secondly, if a potential new competitor is actually successful and starts gaining market share from a currently-harmed Tesla, would Tesla allow this? Or would Tesla lawsuit its competitor by questioning its “good faith”? I think it would be the latter case.

It is really impressive how this start-up was able to impact the whole French economy by leveraging on the 3-D Printing technology.
However, I am a little bit skeptical with the replication of this business, which would allow to achieve economies of scale in this production. Based on the strong growth of technological companies such as Amazon, Google, Uber, among others, I believe that the digital economy will end up removing most of the vending machines in the world. Although they can be used to sell specific products in certain occasions, the convenience of ordering products online will cap the vending machines growth before 3-D printing becomes a useful technology.

On November 14, 2018, Samuel Hill commented on Taste the Future: 3D Printing Chocolate at Hershey :

It’s impressive how Hershey keeps innovating in an ancient product as chocolate. However, I have two concerns regarding the business case behind CocoJet printer. First, is it really a marketable product? Or is it just a “fun experiment” for a niche/exotic market? In my view, I don’t fully believe that this printer is going to drive more sales for the company. Secondly, what is the cost of buying and operating the printer? It is mentioned in the article that the machine really takes a long time to manufacture its chocolates, which is related with its allocated costs.
In summary, although the CocoJet printer may sound as an interesting product, it has to develop a strong business case in order to gain scale and be successful.

It’s really impressing how Amazon is drastically changing the way we interact with technology by bridging the gap between highly sophisticated technology and regular people who just want to live a better/ more efficient life. In this sense, it is key that Amazon balances the trade off between accelerating the product launch and launching a useful product. Based on my experience, Alexa does not always perform as it is supposed to. It is still a work-in-progress product that was launched due to the pressure of competitors (i.e. Google, Apple). Therefore, Amazon needs to make sure that Alexa is achieving high customer satisfaction levels before even thinking of expanding to new areas.

In my perspective, one of the main challenges that WHOOP needs to overcome in order to be successful is to define a broad target market. Although this product seems highly technical and suitable for high-performance athletes, it would be beneficial for it to also become appalling to regular people that practice sport. In this way, WHOPP would be able to substantially improve its amount of data gathering, which will in turn feed the overall system. As many other projects that involve machine learning, the amount of data is crucial to offer a useful and reliable product.