The Future is unknown to most...but not to...

briansolis:

In Nielsen’s U.S. Digital Consumer Report, we were given a glimpse of the extent consumers are connected while watching TV.

The world’s greatest attention magnet now meets the world’s coolest digital water cooler.What’s clear is that connected consumers are also seasoned multi-taskers. When…

emergentfutures:

thenextweb:

The chart, produced by China-based SEO and Web design agency Them [via Resonance China], serves up a batch of impressive statistics and facts relating to the country’s ecommerce, search and social media spaces – each of which is dominated by strong local players. (via Ecommerce, Search and Social Media in China by the Numbers)

emergentfutures:

smarterplanet:

Forget 3G and 4G, terahertz could make cell phones 1,000 times faster | BGR.com

Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh announced that they have discovered a means of wirelessly transmitting data thousands of times faster than current standards, PCMag reported on Wednesday. The team is led by Hrvoje Petek, a physics and chemistry professor at the university, who has theoretically found a way to transmit data between devices in the terahertz frequency. Petek’s discovery of “a physical basis for terahertz bandwidth” could potentially be used to leverage the “portion of the electromagnetic spectrum between infrared and microwave light” and transmit data at rates 1,000 times faster than today’s wireless standards, which are limited to the gigahertz frequency. “The ability to modulate light with such a bandwidth could increase the amount of information carried by more than 1,000 times when compared to the volume carried with today’s technologies,” Petek said. “Needless to say, this has been a long-awaited discovery in the field.”

Read

singularitarian:

Makers of mobile credit card reader, Square, have taken the next logical step. Not only can your iPad become a credit card reader, it can become a cash register now too.

The fast-growing startup has developed an app, Square Register, to go along with their card reader. More than just payment processing software, Square Register offers versatility that comes with being an iPad app. Customers can pay with credit card or cash, and regular customers can leave their wallets at home and pay simply by giving their name. Merchants can organize their items by adding names, photos and prices. Customers complete the sale by signing the iPad with their finger. Unlike conventional registers, Square Register also comes with analytics that merchants can login to from anywhere and view their transaction details.

singularitarian:

Microorganisms are multitalented. The same kinds of bacteria used in wastewater treatment plants can also generate small amounts of electricity. But these two abilities have rarely been combined so cleverly.

joshbyard:

Printing three dimensional objects with very fine details using two-photon lithography can now be achieved orders of magnitude faster than similar devices in a breakthrough by Vienna University of Technology (TU Vienna) researchers.

The 3D printing process uses a liquid resin, which is hardened at precisely the correct spots by a focused laser beam. The focal point of the laser beam is guided through the resin by movable mirrors and leaves behind a hardened line of solid polymer a few hundred nanometers wide.

This fine resolution enables the creation of intricately structured sculptures as tiny as a grain of sand. “Until now, this technique used to be quite slow”, says Professor Jürgen Stampfl from the Institute of Materials Science and Technology at the TU Vienna. “The printing speed used to be measured in millimeters per second — our device can do five meters in one second.” In two-photon lithography, this is a world record.

This progress was made possible by combining several new ideas. “It was crucial to improve the steering mechanism of the mirrors,” says Jan Torgersen (TU Vienna). The mirrors are continuously in motion during the printing process. The acceleration and deceleration-periods have to be tuned very precisely to achieve high-resolution results at a record-breaking speed.

(via unexpectedtech)

curiositycounts:

“The fatal misconception behind brainstorming is that there is a particular script we should all follow in group interactions. The lesson of Building 20 is that when the composition of the group is right—enough people with different perspectives running into one another in unpredictable ways—the group dynamic will take care of itself. All these errant discussions add up. In fact, they may even be the most essential part of the creative process. Although such conversations will occasionally be unpleasant—not everyone is always in the mood for small talk or criticism—that doesn’t mean that they can be avoided. The most creative spaces are those which hurl us together. It is the human friction that makes the sparks.”

Groupthink | The Brainstorming As A Myth
The New Yorker 

Everyone’s talking about the importance of engaging employees, and the Facebook generation and collaboration tools. All of that is garbage… collaboration is a culture. It’s not a set of tools.

Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst | We Are Social (via courtenaybird)

Experienced the same thing when I was hawking CRM tools.  Companies bought the tools thinking they would improve their customer relationships, but did nothing to establish a culture of customer service, which is a totally self-defeating and expensive mistake.  If you are not changing the culture, then there is no tool you can buy or build that is going to improve engagement, whether it is with customers or employees.

Culture isn’t just one aspect of the game, it IS the game. In the end, an organization is nothing more than the collective capacity of its people to create value. Vision, strategy or marketing can set you on the right path and carry you for a while, but no enterprise will succeed over the long haul if those elements aren’t part of its DNA.
Louis Gerstner, ex-Ceo of IBM

emergentfutures:

“Once you break down the old rules, it’s all digital and you can start doing cool stuff like a money mashup. We’re not just taking the existing analog form of payment and moving it to a device, we’re fundamentally changing what it means to be in control of money.”

Anuj Nayar, PayPal | PayPal poised to unveil redesigned digital wallet at SXSW  (via courtenaybird)