Think of them as the ‘Tech Think Tank for the New Tech Generation’

Covid to the Future. Every think tank, think tank should be asking this question as a way to evaluate its relevance to the future, says Eric Samuelsson, president of Peninsula Capital Group. In that…

Think of them as the ‘Tech Think Tank for the New Tech Generation’

Covid to the Future. Every think tank, think tank should be asking this question as a way to evaluate its relevance to the future, says Eric Samuelsson, president of Peninsula Capital Group. In that vein, Samuelsson and colleagues at Polari, a technology and investment consulting firm with offices in the Bay Area, call themselves the “Think Tank for the New Tech Generation.” The Think Tank Institute has built a business of hiring “in-house experts on entrepreneurship, entrepreneurship policy, innovators, entrepreneurs and tech ventures.” Technology innovation played a critical role in finding and adapting strategies for navigating the growing differences between the tech world and the broader economy. We use the field of innovation to build new sources of capital and advise emerging companies on their places in the market. The members and clients who appear with us every day are working towards change—in a market and in a world that’s evolving in novel ways.

Citadeaning. I have been struck by how often you are calling it “un-tech.” The technology used to be the only game in town, says Arthur Levitt, chairman and former chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission. However, the world is quickly moving beyond the Web. The gravitational pull of Silicon Valley is shifting to the Pacific Coast and beyond. Those who can embrace change and harness the energy for progress will see a stronger economy.

Capture the Wind. Data visualization/aggregation and visualization is only a short way to “capture the wind,” as you state. I am the founder of Artillery Innovation, a high-tech art glass wind tunnel. More broadly, we constantly want to “capture the wind” to have a better understanding of the world we live in.

Conformity Is Obsolete. It is great to tell the world there’s “nothing new under the sun,” but there are always new things to learn. We are increasingly having to learn in new ways and with new resources. We do this by “conforming to new rules,” as you put it. The more we conform, the less we can serve our clients and the less we can use the innovation process as a tool for them. For the Win, Why Disrupt? Come visit us at www.ConformityFirst.com!

The Future State. Your experience with one of our dot-commers has convinced you that “The Future State is a piece of cheese made by robots,” as you put it. Smart companies haven’t spent more money on “Brand Marketing” in decades, that you’ve heard, and they’ve saved lots of money on development, testing, measuring, developing, validating, developing, and innovating. They’ve replaced a number of their existing technology resources with newer ones and moved significantly faster in developing new technology because they need to. No more time for comms between companies for product development and development cycles. Time to take ownership of the development process and guide a software company forward. You know this. I can only wonder why you and your team didn’t ask folks in Ireland, the Netherlands, Finland, or the UK how they think the world is changing and which innovations are furthest from the path.

Go Wrong Twice. I was trying to figure out if this was the craziest thing you ever wrote, and frankly I don’t know much about data visualization. You once mentioned the work I do might result in a tool for politicians to see what the experts think about your initiatives. First, yes, the bureaucrats should know what the experts think about it because they are expert but, second, this would require you to have the kind of reverse brainwashing techniques the Nazis used to brainwash people. Perhaps instead of reviewing a bunch of polls from across the country I should have surveyed different panels in different countries to help people understand why they should trust me on this issue.

As Chief Digital Officer of the New York Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications, I would like to make some recommendations to try to break the cycle that afflicts our city:

I’d like to introduce the New York Times Civic Policy Poll as an open source tool. The idea is to aggregate insights from one and two top pollsters and figure out where people really are with the issues. It sounds simple, but it’s certainly a start.

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