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How to work the internets

Opening up expert knowledge for social change

October 30, 2014 | By | No Comments

tl;dr

How can we make traditionally expensive expert knowledge available for free for social causes and communities in need?

Sharing professional advice freely & openly

I make my living as a consultant, and as an organizer of conferences. Therefore I’m well aware of the prices that both organizations and individuals pay for advice, learning, and access to knowledge.

Yet, not all communities/organizations/individuals can afford to hire experts if they need input of some sort or another. Or worse, they have to resort to fake experts who seem to work more cheaply, but also deliver worse or the wrong kind of advice.

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03 Jul

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The most interesting indie R&D shops

July 3, 2014 | By |

Indie R&D Shops

 

For future reference, a short list of some of the more interesting independent companies, studios, design and dev shops that are engaged in invention, prototyping or research & development.

Some work mostly in software, some more with hardware or interfaces. Some more conceptual, some more product-oriented, some squarely in between.

  • Hubbub invent and build playful digital products. Berlin/Utrecht.
  • überproduct. Protyping and external R&D, in code or on paper. Berlin.
  • The Incredible Machine. Focus on connected devices/IoT. Rotterdam.
  • Near Future Lab. Thinking, making, design, development and research practice. (Several locations across California & Europe)
  • Relative Wave. Focus on software and visual stuff. San Francisco.
  • BERG London. Just included for historical reasons as they are not taking on client work after transitioning their business to build BERGCloud.
  • MCQN is all about the IoT. They build connected devices, for clients and themselves. Liverpool.
  • HardwareLabs.io turns hardware prototypes into finished products. London.

If you are aware of others that should be part of this list, please let me know.

 

Full disclosure: Many friends on this list. Alper of Hubbub and I share an office at the time of writing this. Hubbub, überproduct, The Incredible Machine and BERG London all have been involved as speakers at conferences of mine.

17 Mar

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The year of the connected device, but consumer IoT startups face big challenges

March 17, 2014 | By |

Over on the BoschSI Internet of Things blog, I contributed a short piece on the challenges that startups in the consumer IoT space are facing.

There is hardly any doubt that 2014 is the year when connected devices – particularly wearables – will go mainstream. Technology tradeshows and media alike are practically bursting at the seams with new products, concepts, and announcements for connected devices.

It’s worth noting that this is quite a special slice of the Internet of Things: this isn’t about the industrial internet, it’s about bringing the IoT to consumers. This is a very different story altogether, a segment with its own opportunities, challenges, and dynamics, one that exists at the intersection of various verticals – think home automation, wearables, connected mobility, personal analytics, health tech. It’s a space where the lines aren’t yet fully drawn, the terminology not yet fully evolved – which is usually a sign of a field that’s moving quickly and innovating. In other words, this is where some truly innovative and interesting stuff is happening.

Read the full text here.

10 Mar

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Publishing a book! Connected: Understanding the Internet of Things

March 10, 2014 | By |

Connected

Together with the long time friend and lovely collaborator Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino, I’m working on a book:

Connected: Understanding the Internet of Things.

We’re on a pretty tight schedule as we’re planning to launch at ThingsCon (2/3 May 2014).

This is what we’re planning to tackle:

The Internet of things as a term and a new industry has gone through a rapid transition from the sphere of academia (slow technology, ubiquitous computing) to appearing on national IT agendas (the UK’s announcement today of a further £50M in funding for that space). In this period of rapid development, it’s important to take stock and see the forrest from the trees. Connected will draw the landscape of short and long-term challenges and opportunities, document lessons learnt from the pioneers and showcase the most exciting connected products of the past 10 years of development.

For now, the project lives at thewavingcat.com/connected – it’ll have a real home soon. Over there, you can also sign up for news.

Excited!

ps. The image is actually a photo of Sami Niemelä of Nordkapp fame, who’s also a speaker at ThingsCon.