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On November 15, 2018, ST commented on Open Innovation in the NFL: Player Safety :

Thanks for the great article! I think that football is a unique sport in that a large part of the game is the focus on tackling / running into other players. Other sports are similarly aggressive (hockey, rugby, soccer / futbol) but either the sole purpose of the game is not to tackle another player or the players do not wear head protection at all. Therefore, I think that the NFL has to focus on the football use case in the development of safer and better helmets. I think it is great that the NFL is trying to utilize crowdsourcing because this is a serious issue that needs attention and it seems like progress if finally being made. However, given the nature of the sport, I do wonder if the risk of head injury can ever be minimized or improved with better head protection.

On November 15, 2018, ST commented on Volition: Crowdsourcing Innovation in the Beauty Industry :

Thanks for the great article! I think Volition has a great platform that can disrupt the beauty industry but I worry about keeping users engaged in between purchases in order to collect enough data / crowdsourcing. There are the heavy users that will be constantly engaging in the platform but how can Volition keep enough users consistently engaged so that they get enough data points in order to make informed decisions on what products to innovate? I think this is an awesome concept and look forward to seeing how it develops in the coming years!

Thanks for the great article! I think that these clothing subscription sites need to be a mix of human involvement and machine learning. The machine learning is needed for the business to be scalable while the human interaction is needed for the personal experience of shopping and buying new clothes. The human involvement can also be the final filter that corrects the mistakes of the machine. I have heard stories of women who have used Stitch Fix and showed up to work in the same outfit as their coworker. I think that the machine should be able to anticipate and avoid this issue but employees could also double check this. I don’t think the US style is transferrable to the UK – I think Stitch Fix should start from scratch. It should collect data from other sources that the machine learning can utilize and it should focus more heavily on human involvement while launching the business in the UK. As it gets more data points, it should be able to leverage the machine learning more but should still keep some element of the human involvement.

On November 15, 2018, ST commented on Your Personalized Dinner is Served :

Thanks for the great article. I think that Wellio will get more efficient as it grows its user base and accumulates more data. It is a natural learning curve for startups of this kind, however it would be interesting to explore if Wellio could utilize Kraft Heinz’s extensive data to make more informed recommendations and ordering decisions. With regard to sustainability, Wellio can start with making all of its packaging be recyclable or compostable. I think there are trade-offs with focusing on local growers though – depending on geography, certain foods will only be available during certain seasons and there is always a cost trade-off with food. Some people are more focused on the sustainability, local foods while others are more cost-conscious. I think that Wellio should focus on its target market and what that market cares most about.

On November 15, 2018, ST commented on Does Additive Manufacturing Pose a Threat to Gun Control? :

Thank you for the great article. This is truly a terrifying issue – the ATF has enough trouble regulating gun control and usage today. The ability for 3D printers to print plastic, functional guns that can avoid metal detection is scary. I think that this is a case where regulation needs to be used to enable a new technology to provide social benefit while also limiting the impact of potential bad actors. It was good that the State Department required that the files be taken down. I think that the most impactful approaches will be to limit the distribution of blueprints to make these weapons and to somehow limit the ability of the machines to print these items. Once people get access to the machine, it is difficult to police what they use it to produce.

I think that mass customization is the future of the footwear industry (and potentially the apparel industry). 3D printing could bring personalized products at affordable prices to the masses. There will also likely be strong demand for a shoe that is made for you. I actually think that it is okay for Nike to focus on the elite athletes while Adidas focuses on the mass market. It gives Nike the opportunity to perfect its own process and learn from the mistakes Adidas will inevitably make (as every first mover does).