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Very interesting read, thank you! You ask a great question about sustainable competitive advantages with this model. Nothing is really stopping any other biopharma company from doing the same thing, thereby either diluting the talent pool that would be engaged in Pfizer’s competitions or creating a competitive market for ideas. One idea in an effort to ‘lock in’ collaborators would be to ‘license’ certain collaborators and then give them more access to labs, research, computing power, etc. such that once a collaborator is engaged in research on your systems, it’s harder for them to leave.

Great read, thank you! What a cool topic. It will be interesting to see what happens with this technology in the future. I do feel like I’ve heard a lot about 3D printing technology in construction for quite some time and so I was a bit surprised that you mentioned the first habitable house won’t be finished until next year. What is the reason there hasn’t been wider adoption of this technology? Is it really societal apprehension? Or does it have more to do with technology costs? I personally would probably trust a computer to build my house (or at least sections) more so than a construction team and am therefore hopeful this technology diffuses more quickly.

On November 15, 2018, Yoda commented on Amazon Go: The Future of Retail? :

Very interesting, thank you! I think this idea is a homerun for consumers and is the way of the future. Older generations may not like it as much, but as you mention, they aren’t the target audience and every generation is more comfortable with technology (and less human interaction) than the last. My big question is, how long will it take for competitors to catch up? Amazon’s core marketplace business is extremely difficult to replicate given how extensive their distribution network is, but what is the barrier to entry for “Just Walk Out” technology? I’m sure its challenging to develop, but once Wal-mart or Target do, given that grocery is a very low margin business, how profitable will these Amazon stores actually be if all stores are like this?

On November 15, 2018, Yoda commented on Challenge.Gov – A Model for Government Crowdsourcing :

Great read, thank you very much for the article. Given our discussion in LEAD today about getting buy-in from stakeholders, I wonder how invested / interested current government agencies are in having outsiders fix their problems. I think the overall concept is a great idea and obviously has worked really well in the tech industry, but I’m a bit skeptical that bureaucrats will implement as many of the changes suggested through crowd sourcing as proponents of this program would hope for. If that is the case, I wonder how you could get them ‘up the curve’ of acceptance and instill a greater culture of innovation and change.

Great article! The first question that comes to mind in response to this is, how then do you regulate a computer? An AI program may pass an initial test to prove it’s competent, but what happens when there is a misdiagnosis – who is responsible? What if a programmer makes a mistake in the code or data being read in? I guess that’s why you have the technology assist doctors vs. replace them, but I think given how regulated the healthcare industry is (particularly if the company is working with systems like the NHS), I’m curious to know what KOLs have to say on the topic. Regardless – really enjoyed the article, very thought provoking!

Great article! Very interesting. I think your concern around the new technology increasing the cost of healthcare is valid, particularly in the social and political environment of the western world today that is so focused on reducing healthcare expenditures. A natural follow-up question to that concern is, what costs does this technology save patients and payors? E.g., does a biotreatment for a particular organ save money on unneeded future hospital visits and/or surgeries? If so, even if a bioprinting treatment is quite expensive, it could save the healthcare system money in the long run and could get payors and regulators excited about adopting the technology.