Author Archives: Greg Satell

Here’s What You Really Need To Know About Blockchain

In 1970, a scientist at IBM Research named Edgar F. Codd make a remarkable discovery that would truly change the world. Though few realized it at the time, including at IBM, which neglected to commercialize it. It was called the relational model for the database and it would spawn an entire industry. Yet while today few have heard of relational databases, everybody seems to ...

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It’s Time To Be Skeptical About The Lean Startup. Here’s Why:

The Lean Startup

In 1997 Clayton Christensen published The Innovator’s Dilemma and it sparked a revolution. It seemed that for years all anyone could talk about was disruptive innovation. That was until Henry Chesbrough published Open Innovation in 2003 and that got hot. Then Stanford launched its d.school and design thinking was where it was at. Yet go to an innovation conference these ...

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The Semmelweis Myth and Why It’s Not Really True

I was serving on an expert panel at a recent innovation conference and an attendee asked about the Semmelweis effect, the tendency for people to reject new evidence that contradicts established beliefs. He wanted to know how aspiring innovators can overcome inherent bias against new ideas.` The effect gets its name from the story of Ignaz Semmelweis, the Hungarian doctor ...

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Here’s Why No One Cares About Your Ideas

“Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door,” Ralph Waldo Emerson is said to have written (he didn’t) and since that time thousands of mousetraps have been patented. Still, despite all that creative energy and all those ideas, the original “snap trap,” invented by William Hooker in 1894, remains the most popular. We’ve come ...

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We Need Real Scientific Breakthroughs To Build A Clean Energy Economy

A decade ago, clean energy seemed like a pipe dream. Solar panels, windmills and electric cars were widely considered to be something for wealthy tree huggers to assuage their conscience, rather than components of a serious energy policy. Now, however, Morgan Stanley predicts that renewables will overtake fossil fuels by 2020. The appeal of clean energy has gone way beyond ...

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