DigitalTransformation heading

David Telford, Vice President of Innovation

Digital Transformation 2This week at a local manufacturing and distribution user event, I was part of a round table discussion on Innovation and Digital Transformation.  My colleagues and I were asked the typical questions and we gave many of the same answers but one of the comments struck me as interesting.  When we were all asked how we would define Digital Transformation, we all gave answers that spoke of this concept in the present tense, while Innovation was referenced as a future event.  Basically, Innovation is thinking about “tomorrow” and Digital Transformation is something going on now.  The observation implied that if you’re in the middle of a Digital Transformation, then you’re not innovating.  You’re playing catch up to what is current.  I found this idea profound.  I am still thinking through it and trying to determine if it is true or not.  What do you think?  It’s a puzzler.

Digital Transformation 3I shared that Innovation is not necessarily a technology-specific activity and that we need to think as much about how we’re innovating our team dynamics, management practices, and business approaches, not just our products and tools.  How do we build teams to be self-driven and results oriented when we have Boomer, Gen-X, Millennials, Gen-Z, and international participants?  How do we convert our organizations into teams who can push the boundaries of competitive intelligence, prototype quickly and fail fast so we can get to solutions quicker, and push out value through continual delivery?  It’s more than just digital tools.  It’s design-think, and Agile approach, and results based work.  Innovation is not a department; it’s a culture.

GDPRIn other news, GDPR is here!  Did you make it under the wire?  Are you still working through it?  Still waiting to hear about a big newsworthy fine for non-compliance.  I think we’ll hear something by October.  My money is still on Facebook but Forbes put out an article this week on what the fines may have been like for 3 of the biggest data breaches we all know and loath.

Finally, I’m really digging some of the new wearable gadgets coming our way.  Here are three wrist-mounted technologies that are pretty darn cool.  Too bad I only have two wrists.

The Matrix Power Watch is a new fitness tracker that takes the human-as-a-battery concept form the Matrix and puts it on your wrist.  No more proprietary USB charges.  Just put it on and start moving.

SGNL is a body conduction unit (BCU) that turns your finger into your phone receiver.  The wrist band can be connected to various watches and fitness trackers and when your phone rings, the caller’s voice travels through your body and you just touch your finger to your ear to hear it.  Can’t wait to try this one out!

And to round off our super zoomy wrist-tech, Cicret is a bracelet that uses a pico-projector to project a smartphone interface on your wrist.  You can interact with the image like you would with your smart phone.    Check this one out!

Digital Transformation 5This month’s podcast is about the positive side of AI.  No robot overlords in this one, just good predictive computing against large amounts of data.  Enjoy!

HBR IdeaCast:  How AI is Making Prediction Cheaper

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