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The future belongs to those who are fast — Jim Carroll, from the opening to a keynote to an audience of thousands in Las Vegas!

Videos on Disruption
August 18th, 2016

If you think the industry you operate in will look the same in 10 years, you’re wrong!

Here’s a variety of video clips in which I put in perspective how various industries are being subjected to transformative change and disruption. Rethink your assumptions going forward into the future!

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A selection of video clips from keynotes around this topic.
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Get more on the category page for IoT!
Video: Think Innovation!
March 24th, 2016

Here’s a few video clips to get your innovation juices flowing!

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Trend: The Ski Resort of 2015
January 12th, 2012

Click on the image to read this PDF that provides a glimpse as to what a typical ski resort might look like in the future!

Here’s a fun little trend to think about — what will happen with the sports of snowboarding and skiing as we go into the future?

That’s the focus of a little trends documents that I whipped together for some fun, but never got around to posting online.

I just did a quick re-edit to bring it  up to date, and it’s available as a PDF on the right or here.

Here’s how it opens:

By 2015, the ski industry had positioned itself to support the emergence of the next ski demographic.

It was well prepared through an investment in technology and people to deal with the reality that the majority of the new skiers and snowboarders of of 2015 — and many existing enthusiasts — were completely wired, mobile, and expecting a far more interactive ski resort experience. In doing so, the industry  was keeping up with the massive societal change that was occurring as mobile technologies, social networks, and location-oriented “apps” came to change the very nature of the skiing / boarding experience worldwide.”

I took up the sport of skiing at the age of 40, having never really known how to ski. I keep getting a little better every year; have had the opportunity to ski the Swiss Alps and other “big mountains,” and live a family lifestyle that involves a voyage to our home “ski club” every weekend. Both of my sons have become snowboard instructors — and I daresay that I think the sport has changed my overall life in a very good way.

Take a read — you might find the future of this sport, as it becomes influenced by mobile, technology, location and social to be kind of fascinating.

And there’s more on this topic through the links below, include some video clips where I talk about these trends on stage!

Related postings:

  • Blog post – The future of skiing 
  • Blog with video : Jim on the future of snowboarding and skiing 
  • Jim Carroll on “the future of skiing” in the San Jose Mercury Post 
  • read Don’t Mess with My Powder, Dude! (PDF) 
  • Personal : Why we ski  

(July 2016 update: Most of my servers are now on droplets on Digital Ocean. LEMP stack with Ubuntu is the current favourite. Raspbian on Pi’s with Ubuntu for #IoT projects. sudo-apt get update should apply to old blog posts!)

A big shout-out to the 10 companies that helped the most in keeping the JimCarroll.com Web site infrastructure in great operating shape throughout 2011. If you want to do a great Web site, you need to do it right. These are some of the technology companies that have supported my site in various ways through the year.

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Throughout 2011, my Web site has played an incredibly powerful role in supporting my speaking activities worldwide.

Quite a few clients have told me that they’ve found it through a Web search for a ‘futurist’ or ‘innovation speaker’, or have been sent there by one of my speaker bureau clients. They’ve told me they’ve watched the video clips throughout the site, and that with other background information, has convinced them that I’d be a great addition to their corporate leadership meeting or association event.

Keeping a Web site such as JimCarroll.com up and running with little downtime,  in a way that it is fast, responsive, and always available, takes a bit of effort. I do all the maintenance, blog postings and updates on my own. But it’s also through the help of a variety of partners that I’ve got a site in which the average Web page loads in under 3 to 4 seconds — pretty good for a media rich, complex site.

And so as we wind down the year 2011, I thought it would be a good time to give a shout-out to the many technology partners that I use to keep this Web site in tip top shape, or let me watch how well it is working. In no particular order, these partners include:

  • Blogvault: A fabulous WordPress backup service. Plug it in, pay a small fee, and you’ve got peace-of-mind knowing that your Web site is being backed up on a regular minute by minute basis. What’s better is their 1-button Web site restore. For example, I just had to move my son’s Web site over to my main Web server, and using the backup copy it worked like a charm – instantly!. Highly recommended!  
  • VaulltPress; another WordPress backup service that I am using. I started out with VaultPress before I met Blogvault, but I’m not one to easily leave a relationship that is working so well. Like Blogvault. this service does a regular minute by minute backup of my entire WordPress based Web site. Redundancy of backup can be a good thing – that’s why I’ve got two backup services!  
  • Woopra – Web site analytics software. With these folks, I’ve got a fabulous real time dashboard that shows me how people are using my Web site — how they found me, what they’re looking at, and what pages they are spending their time on. This has allowed me to continually redesign my site, ensuring that my clients can easily find the insight they are looking for. There are almost 1,000 blog posts — and I’ve discovered where people really spend their time. 
  • OpenTracker. These folks are a competitor to Woopra — and have their own unique strengths. I particularly like how I can do some pretty deep analysis of Web traffic as it is happening in real time – it gives me a real sense of what people were looking for, and what pages really draw significant attention. 
  • MediaTemple: extraordinary Web hosting with incomparable service — if you are willing to pay for a strong, reliable host, you’ll get stellar service. I had a support question on Thanksgiving Day — and it only took minutes for them to respond. I started the year out with a shared Web hosting service, and to be honest, you can take a significant performance hit if your site gets busy. In April I moved over to their DV (Dedicated Virtual) service, so that I’m the only one running as a server on the space I share. I’ve seen major performance improvements and fabulous reliability. Pingdom tells me I’ve only had 5 outages, and I know that each of those times has been due to something I’ve screwed up on my own. 
  • W3TC: a typical Web site / WordPress blog can slow down when it is serving up a variety of video, images and other information rich sources, particularly under heavy traffic loads. That’s where this service comes in — it spreads out the content to my “content delivery provider,” Amazon CloudFront …so that the images that you see on the Web site don’t actually come from my site, but from a variety of Amazon servers around the world. If you want to speed up a WordPress based Web site, W3TC is likely the best tool out there. 
  • CopterLabs: every once in a while, you need some custom programming done on a Web site. I found and hired Copter Labs to design the cool ‘image slider’ that you see on the top of this post. They do great work, are extremely professional, and truly do draw upon a team of WordPress experts worldwide – while my project was managed from Portland, Oregon, the actual work was done by a fellow in the UK. 
  • GTMetrix: to keep this complicated infrastructure moving and in great operating shape, you’ve got to able to do some deep analysis of where any bottlenecks might be emerging in your site. Every time you add a new feature, you run the risk of introducing some slow performance. GTMetrix lets me look into performance and continually fine tune its operations.  
  • easyDNS: the key component to any Web site is having a domain service that figures out just “where” jimcarroll.com happens to be located — and where and when images are being serviced from Amazon Cloudfront. Not just that, but a great domain service should automatically flip your Web site to a backup host in case things go wrong. That’s the role of easyDNS — I’ve been using them for 15 years — and could not recommend them more highly!  
  • Poll Everywhere: last but not least, but PollEverywhere ranks as my favourite tech tool of 2011. I was described in a blog post as a ‘raving fan’ of this service, and that is extremely true. I use PollEverywhere to do live text message polling while on stage – while they’re not really a part of my Web site, they are a very, very important partner! 

That’s my list of my key 10 providers for 2011. Obviously, there is a lot more at work here in terms of the technology infrastructure. I must mention Apple in light of the  : the home office consists of a Mac Pro, new Macbook Pro, iPad, iPhone, and just about everything-Apple. Between the home and the chalet, we’ve got 4 Apple TV’s and just about ever other whiz-bang iDevice possible. The fact is, Apple has helped to take my business to new levels — Pages, Number, and most importantly, Keynote have all replaced the Microsoft office tools that I was using up until 2007. Earlier this year, while on stage, I actually had to use Windows 7 when I wasn’t allowed to use my Mac on stage — and I was completely, totally lost!

Not to forget as well Keynote Pro: these folks designed the Keynote presentation template that I use on stage — one that has now probably been viewed by over 100,000 people in the last two years alone. It’s not a key part of what I do on my Web site, but from a stage perspective, it’s certainly a key part of my success! 

Thanks to all – and here’s to 2012!

Update: For those asking about how I manage to walk on stage and do what I do, and also manage the tech infrastructure — you can’t figure out the future if you don’t deeply into the technology that will drive it! For what it’s worth, I’ve been geeking out as a hobby since 1982, starting with a Radio Shack Model III. My latest project, in my ongoing effort to keep the Website humming along, is to utilize a MediaTemple VE server running on an “LEMP stack.”  (I’ve had a test site running with Apache and Nginx as a proxy, but there’s still a lot of Apache overhead.) So the next stage involves a barebones Ubuntu operating system (Linux), running Nginx (instead of Apache, for performance), Mysql and PHP. (Hence, LNMP, not LAMP). It’s based on this article here. Looks awesome!

I haven’t done one of these posts for a while. Here’s another week of unique insight from my blog tracking tool, ReInvigorate, that links the search phrases that people used to find a page on my site.

This can be a useful way to discover a few gems of insight from the several thousands of posts throughout my blog!

  • “how to innovate videos” was a search that was done on AOL (really? Does anyone still use this search engine?) and  led to the blog category, “How to Innovate Videos.” You might find some useful inspirational innovation insight by watching a few of those clips.
  • “innovative thinking” led to “The BIG secrets of innovative organizations.” Make big bets, big transformations, big brand reinforcement, pursue big math, and a number of other big ideas on how to align yourself for fast paced change
  • “sports good industry global” led to “The future of sporting goods in a world of high velocity“, which in 2006 made some pretty bold and accurate predictions on how sports is and will continue to change in the future. This was based on a keynote that I was preparing for a leadership meeting of the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association.
  • “start small, learn more, scale rapidly” was a query that was close enough to my comments in the post, “Innovation: Think big, start small, scale fast.” This has been my innovation mantra for longer than I can remember. It makes for a great read!
  • “innovations in the auto industry” led to “Innovation, the auto industry and the new reality” with a clip from a keynote I did in 2008 in Sydney, Australia, talking about how some auto companies are reinventing process as a means of staying ahead.
  • “reasons for innovation” led to the post, “10 reasons why innovation matters for small business.” I pulled together this post just before I went out to film a series of video clips on behalf of Cisco.
  • “legal profession trends 2011” led to the post “The future of the legal profession” from 2007, with a great PDF that summarizes these trends.
  • “innovators new restaurants” led to the post “Recent keynote: innovating for growth in the restaurant industry” for the top leadership team of Yum! Brands (KFC, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut.) It’s a great overview of the trends that the industry needs to be thinking about.  A few months later, Burger King had me keynote their global franchise meeting, where I spoke to more than 4,500 in the Center for the Performing Arts in Las Vegas
  • “Does Apple have a tradition of innovation” — duh, seems like a strange search! — led to the post “Apple: 60% of revenue from products less than 4 years old
  • “workshop leadership trends” led to my Web page, “CEO / Leadership meetings” which outlines the unique types of interactive events that I have done and and can do for clients – workshops and panel discussions. There’s a PDF on that page called “High Velocity Leadership” which describes these sessions in greater depth.

You can read previous “What’s Hot” posts in the category here.

Kids today spend some 7.5 hours a day engaged with some type of media; with with multitasking, that’s 11 hours of screen time per day, or almost  53 hours a week, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation!

That’s more than a full time job, and more time than their parents spend at work.

Here’s a video clip where Jim was the opening keynote speaker for the 2010 US Navy, Air Force & Marine Child Youth Program Conference in Dallas, Texas, putting these numbers into perspective and speaking to the new realities in providing support services today.

Innovation isn’t critical only in business — every type of organization must try to do things differently in a world of fast paced change.

Here’s Jim speaking at the 2010 US Navy, Air Force & Marine Child Youth Program Conference. He was asked to challenge the audience — child youth experts and counsellors on military bases worldwide — to think about innovation in the context of the youth and parents that they serve.

Clearly the demands, needs and forms of interaction with both parents and alike are undergoing significant change as the next generation of parents on military bases – lets call them “Mom 3.0” – comes to rely on technology to a greater degree each and every day.

It’s big, and its’ getting bigger!

That’s the location intelligence industry, which is resulting from the rapid dominance of location-aware mobile devices, the rapid emergence of massive sources of spatial (geographic oriented information, i.e. Google Maps), the rapid user adoption of location-based applications (i.e. iPhone Apps), and a significant amount of innovative thinking as to how to capitalize on these very fast paced trends.

There’s a lot of people building a lot of new businesses around these trends. And it’s happening extremely quickly:

    • in a just-announced test of location based advertising in Finland, MacDonalds’ has reported that location-relevant mobile ads resulted in a 7.0% click-through rate. Of those who clicked through, 39% then used the click-to-navigate option to find the closest restaurant. These are significant numbers
    • one if 4 American’s uses location based mobile services, and half of those who noticed an ad while using such services too some action
  • there has been a 68% increase in the use of mobile mapping and direction services in Europe in ONE YEAR according to comScore
  • MarketResearch.com predicts increases of 37% compound annual growth for mobile advertising and 65% for mobile commerce, influenced by the speed of adoption of location-based services
  • Juniper Research suggests that location based service revenues will top $12.7 billion by 2014, up from $3 billion last year
  • another survey by RCNOS suggested that the mobile locations technologies market will grow at annual compound rates of 20%, reaching $70 billion by 2013, which includes both consumer and business intelligence/application (survey, mapping etc) applications
  • it’s estimated that 1 billion people will access social networks by 2014. Most of them will use some form of location based application as they do so.
  • GPS-enabled mobile phone devices will dominate the technology space, comprising 66% of all GPS devices by 2013

This is pretty significant stuff. Actually, its more than significant – it’s huge. Location is set to lead to significant industry transformation; some pretty dramatic business model disruption (think real estate); changes in consumer behaviour (product promotion and uplift); new business models (mobile, text message based banking which starts out via a proximity relationship.). There’s a huge amount of velocity out there!

There are two angles to the emerging market: consumer (i.e. iPhone) driven applications which will involve marketing, branding, product promotion, customer loyalty, point-of-purchase and a huge variety of other opportunities. The second involves corporate applications such as risk-minimization (i.e. mortgage risk analysis based on spatial data).

Regardless of how you look at, the overall impact of location intelligence is going to be dramatic.

It’s even going to come to impact sports. Here’s a clip from a keynote I gave for 4,000 individuals as the recent National Recreation & Parks Association: “Location intelligence and the future of recreation,” and spoke about the concept of a location intelligence professional.

Location is the new intelligence. And its’ happening faster than you think!

And an increasing number of my keynotes and clients are asking me to focus upon the business opportunities that are emerging in this world. Stay tuned.

Related posts:

  • Location intelligence, financial industries and business model change 
  • Location intelligence and the conference industry
  • Extract from Jim’s book, Ready, Set, Done: How to Innovate When Faster is the New Fast