November Meeting Recap: Disruptive Innovation: Shifts in Technology

November 2017 MM Recap

When Emi Takemura graduated, the internet pretty much didn’t exist, and in her first job there was only one computer, and one email address. So how have we gone from there, to the current situation of more and more powerful computers and an explosion in connectivity?

That’s the question the Emi gave FEW members and guests an insight into at our November Monthly Meeting. She’s well-placed to help answer that question, as one of the co-founders of Peatix, an event ticket website and app, and co-founder of FutureEdu Tokyo. She now divides her time between tech and education, and is passionate about helping entrepreneurs to succeed.

Peatix launched right after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in northern Japan, and at first tried to create social impact through technology, by supporting people who were setting up social events in stricken places such as Fukushima.

Emi brought up the question of why does tech matter? Why should we care? She touched on historical ‘tech’ developments such as the use of papyrus as a writing material, and the introduction of off-set printing in the 19th century. These techniques were all part of a technology shift, helping to distribute information more widely.

Tech has an exponential potential to help us live better, Emi said. She mentioned Moore’s Law, which predicted in the 1960s that computing would dramatically increase in power, and decrease in relative cost, and the concept of singularity, aka artificial super-intelligence triggering runaway technological growth, resulting in huge changes to human civilization!

On a more personal level, she discussed the innovator’s dilemma, i.e., how to create a product the strikes a balance between a good-enough feature set and creating a new market. When it comes to incubating innovation, finding the seed to plant is the most important thing, she said, following by rapid prototyping, which will help you experiment with different ideas, as well creating a feedback loop. That’s the kind of feedback an organization like FEW can help support.

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