27 June 2008 ~ 0 Comments                                       

Roundup: Random goings on in the world of crowdsourcing and outside innovation

Taking a break from the multi-part series, I thought I would cover a bunch of interesting goings on in the areas of crowdsourcing, lead users, and outside innovation.  Read and enjoy.

Eric von Hippel speaks at MIT about Lead Users (Video: Part 1 and Part 2):
Lead users in certain segments are working together to drive the manufacturers out of the innovation process.  Companies are freely revealing to others so that others can improve on it. An example of lead users in action: Kitesurfing, which was developed by users.  First, manufacturers stepped in, then Saul Griffith posted his designs online and others did too. Each manufacturer had 1 or 2 engineers, but then aerodynamicists from NASA started joining in and brought their tools with them.  These lead users drove manufacturers back out of the design busines.  Users collaboratively built tools and designs.

Linus’ law: the reason you want a lot of people looking at a problem is that they all look at it in different ways.  Given enough eyeballs all bugs are shallow.

Users innovated historically but collaborative user design is becoming so efficient it will drive manufacturers out of design.

Johnny Chung Lee: A perfect example of lead user innovation: 
Not only has he dones these wicked things with nothing more than cheap parts and a Wii, he is the creator of the poor man’s steadycam, and wowed the audience at TED.

Freakin awesome Future of Making Map from the Institute for the Future:
Check this out for an incredible overview of many of the topics and companies covered on this blog.  Categories covered are: Networked artisans (Threadless); Citizen R&D (Lego Mindstorms, Innocentive); Lightweight manufacturing (Ponoko); Personal design and fabrication (reprap); From closed IP to open innovation (theoscarproject.org).

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