Last year Boeing (manufactures of large commercial jets for airlines) was implementing a plan for fiscal improvement that included heavy investments in its smaller 737 production pipeline, enabling them to build and ship 42+ 737s in a month (ultimately planning to scale to nearly 50 a month by 2017). Unfortunately, half a dozen fuselages that were manufactured for Boeing by Spirit Continue Reading →
The modern airline industry could not exist in the form it does today without a number of aviation innovations. The forces driving the adoption of these innovations include safety, consumer comfort, and economics for both the industry and for the consumer.
Many of my readings for CS855 Futuring and Innovation (and also for my dissertation) have touched on the science of Affective Computing, Ubiquitous Computing, flight simulating/training, wearable technology, and self-quantification.
Late last year Gartner revealed a number of predictions regarding consumer adoption of wearable technologies in 2015 through 2018 and beyond. The company predicts a dramatic increase in sales of wearable devices, particularly fitness and biometric wearables (see the excerpt below), including smart clothing. Further prediction includes the sales of these devices through atypical channels such as wellness/health providers, gyms, insurance providers, weight loss companies, and even employers, including subsidized or discounted pricing. Continue Reading →
Whether considering wearable technology or business economics, the key requirement for successful innovation is predicting how the future will unfold. There are many different methodologies for planning and predicting the future. Two commonly used are traditional forecasting and scenario planning. Continue Reading →
The adoption of Affective Computing principles and data analytics are not limited to wearable technology and self-quantification. These principles are now emerging in the teaching and learning space. The New Media Consortium (2014) discusses the growth of data-driven learning and assessment, and how it will impact higher education in the next three to five years in its annual report on Higher Education. Continue Reading →
Many great ideas and innovations come about as a result of error or failure. Aviation is a field where error sometimes results in lethal consequence. Soaring flight is a type of aviation with its own unique challenges and safety concerns. Soaring is a recreational (and sometimes competitive sport) in which pilots fly unpowered aircraft known as sailplanes or gliders. Sailplanes are typically towed aloft by a tow plane, and then released at an altitude of 1000′ to 2000′ feet. Sailplane pilots utilize lift (regions of rising air) to stay aloft, and often can fly hundreds of miles for many hours.
The Delphi Method is a systematic problem solving and decision making technique developed to address complex problem using a group of subject matter experts, and was originally developed as a forecasting method (2007, Cialkowska et al).
The Delphi Method is based on the presumption that decision from an organized and structured group are more accurate than decisions from individuals or non-structured groups. It is an anonymous and iterative process overseen by a facilitator. The facilitator is responsible for gathering responses to surveys or forms from the anonymous participants, and analyses those responses to find common viewpoints and conflicting viewpoints. The process of gathering and analyzing responses is repeated until consensus is achieved.
In his 2010 TED talk, Gary Wolf discusses the concept of “Self Quantification.” Wolf asserts that numbers can be used for more than advertising, governance, management, or even searches. Wolf believes that they can also be used by individuals as they “reflect, learn, remember and want to improve.”
He discusses the growing trend of individuals tracking self-information in the years leading up to his talk, beyond the typical (such as tracking weight on a scale). People began to track things on mobile devices such as food consumption, spending, moods, exercise, and even health issues and treatments (2010, Wolf).
At the time of Wolf’s talk, 1st generation fitness trackers were just beginning to emerge, such as the original Fitbit and Nike’s predecessor to today’s Nike Fuel Band, the Nike+ tracker. Since then, dozens of different health and fitness tracker have come to market, with a much wider array of sensors and data available than ever before. For a few hundred dollars, it is possible to wear a device that reliably tracks motion and exercise, continuous heart rate, electrodermal response (a.k.a. EDA), heart rate variability, skin temperature, GPS location, exercise intensity and duration, and sleep quantity and quality. Continue Reading →