Category Archives: Innovation

TrendWatch September 2017

In my spare time I read about all sorts of topics. The number of browsers open at any one time on my computer is unsettling to some! But I love it. I love learning about things that are completely removed from what I would normally see every day. Things that other people are working on, benefiting from, or learning from. Things that make a difference, help us achieve our objectives and improve our lives. Ideas that can be potentially applied to other industries and give us insights into changing business models. The topics range from physics to health products, environment to aerospace.

Today I am sharing a new passion project called TrendWatch. It’s bi-monthly news on technology, trends, hot topics, communication, creativity and innovation.

It’s designed to encourage ideas that go beyond the focus of our day-to-day work, and by asking relevant questions, being better prepared for the future. I hope you enjoy and take something useful from it, and I welcome your feedback.

Tagged , , , ,

Top 5: Gifs, slow food, startup ideas, recorder intro and Daft Punk

In an attempt to express more gratitude and awareness of all the good things in life, I’m embarking on a little project. Once a week I’ll post my ‘Top 5’ of the week – things that made me think, smile, marvel, laugh, appreciate or reflect. I hope you’ll enjoy them, too.

This week’s Top 5 are:

1) The Great Gif

Great Gatsby gif
After Titanic came out I had Leo posters covering my walls for several years. He is divine, and I’m looking forward to seeing him in action again in The Great Gatsby. Put Leo in a gif, and a Great Gatsby gif at that, and I’m yours. Thank you to @kingnivin for spotting and sharing this – check out Nivin’s post here. He writes about how gifs could be the next big thing in movie promotion. I agree.
Gif from The Great Gatsby promo Tumblr.

2) Hungry Mondays deliciousness
Hungry Mondays is delicious, slow cooked food that I buy pretty much every week. A group of chefs slow cook two different dishes every week and sell them for $9 a portion (if you pick up from a few handy locations). One of last week’s dishes was my favourite so far: 16 hour pork and beef chili con carne with a house baked corn bread. It doesn’t hurt that whoever runs the Facebook page has an impeccable way with words, e.g.: “House baked corn bread comes fresh out of the oven, gets cooled and sliced. It comes as a side with El Capo’s chilli con carne, the sweetness of the bread compliments the chilli of the chilli, which is mild to medium, depending on how soulful you are.” They’ve captured my heart with both food and words.

A Hungry Mondays dish

A Hungry Mondays dish – image from the HMs Facebook page

3) What are the best ways to think of ideas for a startup? 

I enjoyed this answer by @startuprob on Quora. He lists some absolute gold ways in which you can generate ideas, such as:

  • Look through your bank statement to see where your money is going. (Could you be doing any of those tasks better? Cheaper?)
  • Ask yourself, “What type of business would you want to run if there was absolutely no chance of failure?”
  • Look through the customer service sections of websites and find out what people are complaining about.

Thank you, Rob! Read his full answer on on Quora.

4) 20th Century Fox intro on the recorder

It’s a couple of years old and completely ridiculous but brings back memories of failing miserably on the recorder (didn’t we all have a crack at primary school?) and it certainly scored LOLs. Thanks Jayde and Nick for the heads up!

5) Daft Punk’s new track, Get Lucky

The French boys are back and I’m loving this funky 70s vibe track. Get on it!

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

The sweet spot between routine and spontaneity

Athletes thrive on routine. Their success depends on it. Humans in general benefit from order in a world where there is so much unpredictability, but we’re also impulsive creatures. Where lies the balance?


Mixing things up contributes to creativity, mastery, action, innovation and discovery. Routine gives us the means to practice something enough to become really good at it. Add unforced passion to the mix, and we can pretty much master that thing. That’s when we’re unstoppable.

Relationships flourish when we can surprise each other. When our partner whisks us away somewhere new for the weekend. When a night out with friends turns into story to tell for years.

We do better at our work when we’re given the opportunity to grow by doing something that’s outside our comfort zone. New sights and environments give us perspectives that ignite different parts of our minds. Being disciplined allows us to form habits, but having the flexibility to try new things fills our lives with excitement and adventure.

The right balance is different for all of us. Familiar is comforting, new is thrilling. Wake up and go to sleep around the same time each day but turn left instead of right until you find your ideal version.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Poem: Fast Company’s ‘The world’s 50 most innovative companies’

When I came across Fast Company’s ‘The World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies 2013‘ list, I realised that I was familiar with 22 of them, but didn’t know the others or what they do. So, I decided to create a few verses to summarise them. Here goes!

Fast Company’s ‘The World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies 2013’ – in rhyme

With Nike, apparel and tech are a match here to stay
E-retailer Amazon has long paved the way
Mobile payments are made easier with Square
Splunk and big data are a heavenly pair

Designware desires? Head straight to Fab
Uber – could it mean the end of the cab?
Fraudulent sellers – from Sproxil you’ll hide
Pinterest is popular with many a bride

Safaricom gets callers and doctors connected
Target’s smaller stores are far less rejected
Life before Google – do you remember?
With Airbnb it pays to be a member

Apple has mastered retina display
Shareable content is Coke’s social way
Pig Newton sells comedy to fans direct
Tencent‘s ‘WeChat’ helps China connect

With Samsung, Apple may have met its match
Buzzfeed informs but also helps you detach
Online fashion companies – making over fashion and beauty
SeeChange Health is ‘making people healthy’ its duty

Oxitec engineer bugs to help save human lives
Electric cars – what my great-granddaughter drives
Drink carbonation – stuff the team at SodaStream do
OpenGamma‘s analysing financial risk for you

D-Rev wants better third world healthcare
Rovio made Angry Birds – are you aware?
Cars with smart software is how Ford design
Western Governers is changing education online

Creative advertising is a speciality of Droga5
Yelp‘s user reviews are well and truly alive
BitTorrent‘s taking charge of delivering the world’s content
While software development middlemen are on the ascent

Nest‘s making energy savings real, not just in your dreams
These biotech companies want to study our bloodstreams
Oktogo‘s changing Russia’s online travel booking scene
Your smartphone probably has a Corning‘s Gorilla Glass screen

NBA‘s producing sports content – they’re on a roll
Making the toilet of the future is Landwasher‘s goal
Evernote helps users be more productive, no sweat
Coursera gets University courses on the net

Elevating digital/physical play is up to Activision
Roku‘s revolutionising how we consume television
Enalta‘s making Brazil’s farm crops abundant
These robotics companies might make humans redundant!

Mobile ads that people want? Kiip‘ll make them be seen
While fashion conglomerate, PPR‘s going green
AngelList is where startups and investors meet
Microsoft‘s ‘digital living room’ is the word on the street

QCue‘s filling empty seats with dynamic pricing
Tumblr makes social media and content enticing
With that we’ve reached fifty – that’s much innovation
Now go forth and relish in the inspiration!

Tagged , , , , , , , ,
%d bloggers like this: