My Google Talk On Disruption
I’m giving a talk at Google Mountain View on Wednesday at 10:30am pacific time. Here’s how the talk is described in the email that was sent around Google announcing it:
Fred will be talking about “disruptive industries”. Media/entertainment
has taken the brunt of the disruptive force of the internet and
internet technology but that’s just the start. What industries are
next? Energy, education, consumer finance, and health care all seem
ripe. What are those industries going to look like in 20 years, 40
years, 60 years?
has taken the brunt of the disruptive force of the internet and
internet technology but that’s just the start. What industries are
next? Energy, education, consumer finance, and health care all seem
ripe. What are those industries going to look like in 20 years, 40
years, 60 years?
I’ve been working on the talk over the weekend but did not get as far as I’d like. I’ve got a bit more to do on the last two topics which are energy and health care. Here’s a first draft. Let me know what you think and if you have ideas, please share them in the comments.
View more presentations from fredwilson.
Mobile payments very well might be a field of massive possibilities. It is also inherently difficult to master. Just think of all the security & fraud problems; if I remember correctly Paypal started out as a Palm mobile transfer system before changing course.. you might want to read up on it in Founders At Work, pp. 1-16 (interview with Max Levchin).
Thanks for the suggestionI agree that mobile payments is hardBut I also think its inevitable and coming soon
I believe that Twitter recently said it’s working on mobile payments.
it is most definitely on the way. it will be NFC (encrypted) involving a reader in your phone or a form factor with the chip embedded.check these guys outhttp://www.squidcard.com/you can load the card up to $100. this is actually very safe – it prevents a reader ‘killing the card’ or sniffing it.we are looking at this for the restaurants, but are struggling with a POS integration. Every restaurant we have interviewed bar none – would welcome this (even if it were at the bar and not at the table for instance) -this is the erosion of the beach head that is coming amex’s way – it will not come (IMO) by one or two highly disruptive technologies (like the music business) it will come by hundreds of smaller services that chip away at the cliff face.and the reason why Amex is not equipped to deal with this is that their merchants by and large DO NOT like them (too costly) – their business model is built on unsustainable drivers given the power of the internet, and they seem to be doing a fine job pissing off card members over the smallest issues.
Mark … thanks for SquidCard link and if you don’t get my email please DM me your email on Twitter @gerryhurleyMany thanks.
Thanks mark. Very interesting
Is this talk open to the public? I’d love to be there.
I don’t know
Seems like a great talk. Can you elaborate on the #30 slide “Games can change behaviors”? What are some good examples of such games and how they’ve affected (effected?) activity/engagement on the site?
The screen shot on that page is “tumblarity” which is a new “game” tumblr launched to get people to do more on tumblr. And it’s working pretty well.But the bigger question is are there games that can make people be healthier?
do you mean physically healthier? If so, check out GymFu by @JofArnold – challenge people to push up games. Quite cool.Don’t you risk alienating users if you push games (such as Tumblarity) too hard? I checked out my score on Tumblr, it was 6 and instantly felt insulted and pondered changing to a competing blog service.
that’s a very good point about a points system being a turn off.i do worry about that.i’ll check out GymFu
Shaun White Road Trip Snowboard for the Wii Balance Board. I have a 9 week old baby at home and I put him in a carrie or just hold and we “board” together. He goes to sleep and I get a bit of exercise. I’m 35. All I can think is this is just the very beginning.
Do you do flips with the baby in your arms? 😉
Consider perhaps a screenshot from Minority report. Remember the point where all newspapers got updated in real time? Would be a fun slide after the NYT stock chart. Also deeply personalized advertising is bound to emerge. That should resonate well with Googlers. URL-shorten the URLs with custom slugs.
Good idea on minority report
I would like to know more about why you specifically said *consumer* finance and why small biz isn’t coupledAs for your games changing behaviors (inducing engagement), I totally agree. It would be interesting to see how that crosses international and religious barriers or if it something that happens in countries with more competitive economic systems and how now the analytics/demographics to figure something like that are accessible.
Fred,Curious to “hear” what your take is on education. I agree that we’ve got some disruption here, but for most schools and classrooms in the US it hasn’t been nearly disruptive enough. Are you going to identify barriers? Education really needs to “get it,” but I’m not sure how we’re going to see it scale at a pace that is truly transformational.
You have to go around the systemThat’s why I highlight unschooling and home schooling
agreed Fred. We just went thru homeschool decision/research and, as an investor, it was an invigorating process — opening so many interesting paths to hack the norm. As investor & parent, I’m looking for the “Rockstar School” as online homeschool complement where every teacher/subject is top-decile, funny, engaging — talent abounds, need world-changing entrepreneur to incentivize/record/deliver top global talent. Ping me if see similar…
Fair enough, agreed. But for how many families is that a reality? My family doesn’t depend on the system and neither does yours. What/who is going to make it accessible for most? Small disruptions–yes. Large scale? Not there yet.
Very true. But if you can start to compete with ‘the system’ and begin taking away the best and brightest, then you may be able to force the system to adapt and change
Politics. And public administration in particular.Both are ripe for disruptive change. At the politics end, the Obama campaign was just a start. At the administration end, I expect to see far more local, regional and national public sector administration to get impacted by the Internet. This is just starting to happen, you blogged about it just a fed days ago.
Yes. But can that be profitable too?
Good question!I think it can certainly make things more efficient. I see these things to be operated by NFP, or by governmental organizations themselves.
slide #4 = AKA crowdsourced movement. not only are they empowered, but the collective intelligence is much stronger than the traditional power & it can scale better than ever before.I completely agree with slide #23. As a startup employer these days, I can get a much better impression from somebody’s Facebook, Twitter, etc. than I would from their resume. This goes back to transparency in the 21st Century.-Adam
Really interesting. After watching this, I thought I’d add that I’ve recently seen a couple health care related business plans developing technology for monitoring self practices to lever the medical professional on things like exercise, meditation, breathing, generally agreed upon to be good practices, but hard to monitor and therefore left outside the insurance-doctor sphere of influence.
Can you point me in the direction of those businesses/projects?
I just have this feeling that local review isn’t still living up to its 100% potential yet, despite Yelp and all. Local folks know about the area the best, and yet still the web hasn’t captured all their knowledge and wisdom, I think.
i totally agree – isn’t it mostly people coming in to visit and providing reviews – rather than those that live within 100 yards and no the ‘down and dirty’. I guess travel and review are coupled where as people feel less of a need to review something around the corner?
You should add third world as bullet #5. While the rest of the world is innovating, 1 billion people are catching up with the innovations and annually spending billions on phone (just sms), internet (basic dialup, low speed broadband) etc. The opporunities are huge and are at the very ground level.
I agree with that
I’m not sure this fits in perfectly with your framework, but I would suggest that the issues and opportunities surrounding the “personal brand” will have a very disruptive impact on social relationships and personal economics.We are already at a stage where everyone can easily become a publisher, a network, an advocate, an influencer, etc. Some personal brands (e.g., Fred Wilson) are already able to command a “price” for their brand; whether that translates directly into revenue, social opportunity, public profile, etc. What happens when we can actually start attributing an economic or social value to everyone’s personal brand based on such measures as: size of network, quality of brand, degree of influence, etc? To some extent, we do this today by looking at how many followers you have on Twitter, how many friends on Facebook, how many subscribers to your blog, etc. But that is just scratching the surface of the potential value and transparency of the personal brand.Imagine walking into a bar or office in the near future and being able to easily ascertain the value of everyone’s personal brand. How will this change social dynamics and personal relationships? How will this enable new forms of targeted advertising? How will this enhance personal economics?In short, I would add the individual or the “personal brand” to your suggested list on Slide 11.
It might be part of why the internet is so disruptive and applies across all the sectors
I might add another industry to your list: governmentyour presentations are really really excellent fred – minimal communication but maximum elucidation
Agreed on govt steve but can we make money disrutping it?
CertainlyJust off the top my head, some very IT dependant, very old school areas thatcan (and should) be viewed as fertile territoryprocurement (generally)Defense (intelligence gathering – contracting/sourcing field medicine operations communications)Entitlement program administration (have you looked at your ANCIENT LOOKINGsocial security statement lately? – medicare medicaid military and civilservice pensions etc!)Tax collection and enforcementElections (fund raising – campaign organization voter fraud)Law enforcement (surveillence, e.g. Traffic monitoring and security video operations communications fleet and resource management)
This may have put me over the edge. I may have to add govt as a fifth area
I live in CA and suffered during the ‘energy/Enron/independent service operator’ electricity debacle a few years ago. I’d like your views on how could global, open, social, intelligent, can help us avoid another “let’s deregulate electricity before we know how it works’ (in the largest state) energy mess? I have to believe that openness could have helped avoid some of that pain…
Most all “de-regulations” have been horrible fiascoes due to the regulation that was left. I lived through the CA energy issues (could you ask for a better Governor to suffer that than Gray Davis? such an apt name) too. The major problem was price fixing by the government – as always maximum prices lead to shortfalls in supply. This was especially true because energy retailers HAD to buy in the spot market but couldn’t pass along their costs to consumers.You got screwed because the government wasn’t willing to ACTUALLY open up the market due to fear of consumer advocates (and D political base). Energy is beset by so many regulations at Municipal, State and Federal levels, with many lines of responsibility that just DON’T CARE about electricity. See the layers of approvals you need to build new generation or transmission capacity, where most of the people involved will be politically and bureaucratically harmed by any approval but not by reducing electricity supply or increasing its fragility.Get government out of the way – all the way out of the way – and you can do many things. As it is energy is not amenable to change – too many people to bribe and too many hostile parties with unlimited coffers who will sue you and every government department you interact with.
Any ideas for how to do that which I could incorporate into my talk?
home energy, in particular, is an industry sorely due for disruption. Meters are unreadable, there’s no usable feedback or analytics, and no surprise there’s systemic inefficiency. a service like Mint/Wesabe for home energy would be disruptive and welcome. some people and companies are working on this:Bklyn-based: http://www.energyhub.net/My friend in Durham NC is also tackling it: http://www.visibleenergy.bl…
Thanks! This is great. I needed more in this area
On the education section, wanted to point you in the direction of MIT’s FabLab. See this <href=””http: http://www.poptech.org=“” popcasts=”” popcasts.aspx?lang=”&viewcastid=5″>PopTech video for an explanation of an “intellectual pyramid scheme” (starting at 14:40) where older students pass on their expertise to newer ones. Rest of the presentation worth seeing for other great ideas about personalized, local product creation.Good luck!
I love it!
Some general comments- Love, love, love the “cover” slide. Also really like the overall topic.slide 8- how about 7 words to live by, including instantaneous.slide 11- would suggest adding 5th industry, what i would suggest be called something like “customer interaction”. this includes discounts, coupons, special offers, or rather generally- the customization of information flow between customers and the merchants they care about on an individual level.Maybe a better way to think of it is the creation of the ability for a consumer to gain control of that which the web throws at him/her. As an example- I go to a site that is toy centric to buy a gift for my son to give to his friend for a party. The adds I see target those interested in the toys for sale (i know a touch simplistic but you get the point) on that site. But, I don’t care about those toys, I care about golf and stereo equipment (etc.). In essence my interests should (and will) follow me around the web regardless of the content I am viewing. This in a round about way best describes the “customer interaction” industry.at first glance it seems that slides 12, 13, and 14 make the same or very similiar points (granted I do not get the benefit of hearing your words that may distinguish very important differences).
Great feedback kevin. I will use a lot of thisThanksFred
The trend is obvious. The Industrial age is over. Large enterprises will continue to shrink at a rapid pace as smaller more practical outfits change all industries. Hierarchies are horribly inefficient when everyone has the same information because of the cost of communication. Big enterprises have little reason to exist today because as Ronald Coase discovered almost a century ago, the only reason to have a big organization is to reduce transaction costs involved with creating a good or service. Since most transaction costs have always involved consumer ignorance, the internet has made it impossible for enterprises to continue to prey on consumers because they can now find alternatives or in many cases create the goods and services themselves.
Right on all points but its still worth figuring out a game plan to profit from that realization
Really good book on disruptions throughout history of energy is Peter Tertzakian’s “Thousand Barrels a Second”. Talks about progression and geopolitics from wood/peat to tallow to spermacelli to caol to oil to nuclear (and beyond). Want to get really funky… Harrison Schmidt’s “Back to the Moon” (yes, Schmidt as in the last man to stand on the moon). Both of them paint pictures of ways forward & have nothing to do with “the grid” or infrastructure and are about highly dense, readily available energy “sources” for worldwide needs several generations downrange. Renewables factor but can’t carry the appetite short term and aren’t efficient enough to carry us long term. You’d like Tertzakian personally. Neat guy (economist + geophysicist). Smart as all get out and held his own on the Daily Show. Would love to see him do a TED delivery (he’s that good, smart). Throughout history we’ve been able to adequately anticipate and predict what our next source of energy would need to be. When I talked with him he likened the situation to monkey bars… society swings from one to the next blindly accepting there’s a next rung to hang onto. Now we’re at the end of the monkey bars groping and not feeling anything to carry us forward. Society acts surprised. But, we have some time to figure the next position out. Unless, of course, carbonates become so socially ugly (remember coal’s social stigma?) that we accelerate the decline curve on the demand side (climate, pollution, etc). That accelerates the need to transition. Which, places unusual pressures on all fronts – geopolitical, economic, social, educational, environmental. Which – is precisely where we find ourselves today.
I’ll have to read these books. But not before my talk tomorrow!
you pretty much have it covered in this 31 slides, you can rearrange them to get the story to flow better depending on the format and audience and then you should be good. The general idea is that the business world is inevitably unraveling because of the free flow of information and Google being an information monster company is sitting in the middle of all the drama. Google will unravel last but they will be the reason that most of the other big enterprise will implode. They might do well to hire more lawyers 🙂 .The recession will actually unsurprisingly accelerate the unraveling and that’s a good thing because this is not the industrial age any more and we can all do better by being more efficient and faster to market both commercially and socially
damn. this is hot right here, people.
Fred, am looking forward to seeing – and hearing – the final presentation.Any chance you’ll be able to record an audio track?
The @Google talks are often posted to their YouTube channel – http://www.youtube.com/user…
David – thanks! I’ll have to check that out.
SweetIf they post it to youtube, I’ll reblog it here
Only if google records it for me
Looks like 20th century’ish to me.The biggest change we will encounter and drive with advanced communication is “sustainable economics”.The “economics of scale” just aren’t working, see auto industries, heath care , education, environmental issues ….We can not say everybody should get a PH.D and believe that model scales and is sustainable, or we let companies grow to the point they become inefficient but still control a market. Just put the equations from economy of scale in a highly complex and interconnected system (chaotic) and run a simulation over time to see what will happen.
I agree that economies of scale are losing their edgeMartketplaces seem like a good bet to replace a lot of big businesses
On the 50th anniversary of CP Snow’s lecture which revealed the mother of disruption (science/humanities), the hyperjump to new disruption might be to make it invisible. Perhaps that’s web 3.0. In a yearning for transparency, understanding, and fairness, I want to see a human/machine readable representation of information and process.In this manner, isn’t there a way to make the split become so visible, it’s invisible? Take the hiring process of government staff, for example. Certainly, we want a ‘scientific’ approach – one that has ‘business rules’, evaluation criteria, weightings, and so on … but don’t we also need to reflect ‘intuition’ and ‘hunch’? That’s the point of describing enhancements to Wisconsin’s web based hiring mechanism, to be amplified by the use of semantic web based knowledge and process representation which can be used and understood by the people, as well as engaged by machines equipped to explain how and why they came to conclusions.
Any chance of getting in to hear your talk?
I don’t know. I suspect its limited to google employees but don’t know for sure
Great presentation… glad to see the references to mobile-payments and “money is just bits”… Just a quick prediction/comment. It seems clear to me that disruption in the banking/finance sector with new forms of digital currency will likely happen in China, before the US and Europe. Partly because the infrastructure and systems are already in place, and also because unlike Western democracies, its government could mandate such macro changes easily.
Education: I dont like “Web as a textbook” there have been many instances where the Web has been misleading. The web does not have context and lacks a good time stamping of events. You may look up Google for topic X which is an ongoing standard and you get the oldest article first due to its pagerank (or whatever) Ususally you need something much more recent. I like the “Open Education” initiatives at the various US Universities.HealthCare:I believe HealthCare is tough because it is very personal and the digital records being created will be in Physician Jargon that will be very difficult to act upon for non medical individuals. Look at Yos Technologies that is creating Smart card based systems for easy access to patient records by physicians and potentially patients.Health Care is (Global, social, mobile, Intelligent) I don’t see it being open. The solutions may be playful in their ways to attract a market, provided its not viewed as a gimmick.Energy:Energy is a completely different commodity, here you can create multiple networks that are part of the smart grid with MANY TWO WAY CONVERSATIONS (Energy Transfers), this is also another take on crowdsourcing. The hurdles here are cost of energy generation (solar, wind is still very expensive for individuals), getting people to tinker around with power generation is a completely different task compared to writing software or blogs. While this is literally providing Power to the People it will take a very long time for it to be disruptive. – There are not enough fixed installations of Solar, Wind to make it a threat to the big guys,- There are not enough “Mobile Installations” (hybrid Cars) that can distribute the energy, YET- There are’nt enough DIY kits to get the interest of the common person (have seen none in the press)….Energy is (Social, open, Mobile, Intelligent), I see Energy as Local in its need and production, that is what disrupts the “Global” energy markets.If you can webcast your presentation or provide a followup article on the discussion that would be excellent.
This is a great comment. I need to chew on it some. But I think I can make the presentation better because of it. Thanks
At the intersection of consumer finance and “power to the people” are peer-to-peer lending services like Lending Club and Prosper. They enable people to serve as banks. May be worth inclusion in the deck after the Covestor slide.
Good suggestion. But I’ve not been drawn to prosper as much as I’d like to. The alignment of interests isn’t there for me (compared to covestor) and the loss rates are too high
Also another point will be to mention Robot and automation. It is said by 2050 the football world champions will be defeated by a team of robots 🙂
For sure. I need to spend more time playing with and thinking about robots
Looks great. Would love to attend if it’s open to the public.
the intenet’s about people connecting and being powerful together (less need for existing institution/organization)re: slide 20: Everyone’s got something to teach — people [of all ages, not just kids] teaching each other anything. That’s School of Everything — and it’s what happens at thousands of Meetups daily now: 5M+ goog results on meetup.com of “teach” or “learn”http://www.google.com/searc…re: finance, people self-organizing their financial worlds, see http://financialchaos.meetu… or http://frugalliving.meetup…. or http://ibd.meetup.com/re: health, people self-orgnanizing to be healthy — eg. preventative: http://fitness.meetup.com/ & support: http://autism.meetup.com/
Thanks scott. This helps me work meetup into the presentation which I’d love to do
Fred – I ran across this site a few weeks ago – seems like an interesting approach for health care. Not only is the idea disruptive but it would seem that they are also geared to use web technologies to make health care more accessible via online medical records, chat, etc with docs. Good luck! I agree that all these markets are RIPE!https://www.hellohealth.com
ThanksI’ll check it out
Slide 3On the New York Times slide at the beginning. I like to mention that it took the NY Times168 years to reach a little over 1 million subscribers. It took Facebook 4 yrs. to reach 200 million, etc.Slide 11Agree that education is about to get blasted by online education initiatives. Few colleges realize that theUniversity of Phoenix has 7,000 people dedicated to their admission process. Typical colleges have less than 10-30!Slide 15good article on mobile phones in the NY Times today. Mentions that the ave. phone cell phone bill is $5 and people are figuring out how to use text messaging to pay bills, donate moneycheck out my book, Internet Dough, it focuses on Why businesses need to develop a comprehensive Internet strategy. http://www.internetdough.NEToh, one last thing, that I picked up from Don Tapscott. Leadership in the future. The leaders of the future will learn how to use collaborative web tools to run their organizations. The genius leader, with a gut to make the decisions will be replace by the consensus builder who can use the “wisdom of the crowds” to make better decisions.By the way, nice example of collaborative leadership by reaching out to the public.Good luck on your presentation.Don
great point on leadership and collaborative web tools. i like to say leadership 1.0 is about being a genius with a thousand helpers, leadership 2.0 is about being the helper to a thousand geniuses IMHO.
Ohhhh, very nice thought kidmercury! I like that a lot.
In my job I get to be a helper to dozens of geniusesOn this blog I get to be a helper to thousands of them
spoken like a true blog star, boss!
Yeah there’s a great video I referenced on that explosive reach/influence in a post I put together not to long ago: http://bit.ly/174xAs (horribly long link shortened). For the NYT there’s a question of how much time/planning/thought goes into articles vs. the quick and dirty interaction of Facebook. I like some of both with blogs and micro/social connections.
ThanksGreat comment, great critiques
Emerging markets – it needs more than Internet. The pain point there is a. Utility of Internet is still not defined.b. Communication is the key (i.e. mobile penetration)Most importantly, emerging markets need global organization structure, global thinking (i.e. it needs to go beyond www, unlike a typical American thing)More:a, Micropayments.b. low cost computing (a Bottom of Pyramid industry)..-Ashishwww.pluggd.in
Education could use some disruption. But, I remember quite often kids at my school talking about the futility of learning subject X. I want to be Y, and I’ll never use subject X. It always bugged me when I heard that. I knew I wanted to be a software developer when I grew up, but it turns out writing well and having excellent communication skills make the real difference in my line of work. At the time had I thought the way my peers thought I don’t think I would have made good choices about my education. Let’s be honest kids, on a whole, aren’t known for making great choices.On the flip side I think getting kids interested in a single subject, and allowing them to go deep within that subject at their own choosing could spark them to get interested in other subjects. But, where’s the balance there are some basic things kids need to do. The problem is with education is that if you pick a poor choice you’re affecting people’s lives for a very long time. Poor choices made at the early levels have life changing impact. Do it incorrectly and you can hurt the potential of people later on down the road. And, I think there in lies the true chance for disruption. How can you change the system so it’s more forgiving for poor choices?The disruption that’s already happening is getting adults back to school. The trade school side of education is already doing this in a significant way. Phoenix, Strayer, ITT Tech, etc are all disruptive tech. They are targeting a segment that typical university systems are ignoring. They are also teaching very practical subjects, or subjects not offered by the big 4 year institutions. It’s less based on research and more on practical knowledge. But, by going up the value chain they could really change the face of higher education. But, what if everyone continued to go to school through out their lifetime? A big question is what is proper certification? If everything is a-la-carte how do you certify someone? Should that be set of the educators or industry?Now fast forward to Business Week’s recent head line stating 3 Million job openings during this recession, but they can’t be filled due to lack of skilled applicants. There in lies the real reason to get adults engaged in lifetime education. The more fluid we can make the workforce the faster we can recover from these down turns, and the more employable people will be moving forward. If you’re not going to be employed in one field for 40 years make sure you can work in many different fields.
“I want to be Y and I’ll never use subject X.” You make a good point that writing well and excellent communication skills have been integral to your career success as a software developer. Many students struggle with understanding the relevance of their coursework. In fact, research into the causes of dropping out of college has shown that one of the critical factors (in addition to academic difficulty) is students not seeing a connection between their coursework and their desired career. This is a crucial gap that is often not adequately addressed in college. Solving this problem should be part of every college’s plan. It will help students succeed and helps college keep the the revenue those students represent.
I saw this as a huge problem in most of my courses – profs don’t articulate how subjects and techniques can be applied, don’t give you a high level view of where things are going. Especially true in some more obscure math techniques that you don’t run into frequently – err convolution?A big source of these issues is that teachers at all levels aren’t capable of explaining the importance of a subject or technique. At lower levels it’s because they’re simply not worldly, intelligent, or skilled enough (there aren’t very many Phd candidate Math and Engineering majors who chuck it all to teach HS, instead it’s people who barely scraped through a few calc or stats courses), while at university it’s down to poor communication skills and an inability to empathize with people who aren’t head over heels for topology (imagine, Math and Engineering profs lacking in communication and people skills). Unfortunately there are no easy ways of solving this – the collapse of the churches and increase in opportunity for women has nearly eliminated the supply of highly intelligent and driven teachers, the combination of skills and attitudes that make great teachers are transferrable to too many more interesting and rewarding careers (consulting, i banking, entrepreneurship…)
The thing that really stands out for me is how relevant the idea of the long tail still is. For me, disruption is not about a better product, it’s about a simple product that caters for the least demanding users. It then just works its way up the tail until, lo and behold, it is eating into the head (Firefox is a great example of this). I’m fascinated to see how this idea plays out across the industries flagged above in the coming years.
Its what clayton cristensen explained in his seminal book on this topic. The big challenger always comes from the bottom and doesn’t look like a challenge until its too late
looks like it’s going to be a great presentation, IMHO you nailed all the killer stuff — education, banking, gaming, government being my favorite disruptive trends that make the Internet/networking technology so exciting and filled with opportunity. was definitely glad to see virtual currencies being plugged. the only missing ingredient was some 9/11 truth!and of course, since today is the eleventh of may, remember the street actions that will be occurring today….learn morethe web is about power to the people, no doubt about it!
The cool thing is that this talk doesn’t really come from me. It comes from everyone who hangs out here at AVC because so many of my insights come from all of youI am sure you can see your contributions Kid
Hi Fred,Regarding your “power to the people” line of thought and what is happening to media companies, I would suggest to look at the phenomena in a bigger context: Big companies are built around the rapid creation of value through the exploitation of information asymmetries; then, maintaining theses asymmetries is the key to raise relevant barriers of entry. Information Technology, Internet technologies in particular, have matured to a place where they can start to realize the potential to lower, redistribute and/or eliminate some of these asymmetries in a broad range of industries, making value chains more efficient and, in the process, lowering the margins and the barriers of entry for competition: “Perfecting” the markets. But, of course, in “perfect competition” markets value approachs marginal costs, etc. Now, what might happen is that the reduced margins (and payoffs) of adopting these new technologies in any specific spot of the value chain puts current players in a loose-loose situation, and they try to cling to the old asymmetries as hard as they can. This will eventually create new, smaller players, with a smaller footprint, to which this “smaller” asymmetries still make sense. I call this a “granularization force” (is that how you spell it?), and I think what we are seeing in the media is a product of this progressive “granularization”,. What is more interesting is that our current technology can power this “granularization” in many many industries, and I suspect that older, long established value chains less prone to innovation and cannibalization will be the first to be disrupted by this change. Media is a paradigmatic example, I suspect we will see the same in trade, agribusiness, textiles, health, you name it. I think we are on the verge of a very “grassroots” revolt of global value chains based on technological change. I’m also betting my time and $$ on that :)What do you think?
consumer finance. big on the consumer finance. the sad part is that the existing powerhouse financial entities don’t seem to be creating the innovation on their end to help the consumer. Mint.com does a great job so far. new entities should be forming in the near future that cause disruption to the banking and lending industry…there is so much innovation to create!!!it’s internet. anything is possible with the right ideas and enough capital backing.great slides Fred.
We have a competitor to mint in our portfolio called wesabeI’ve used both and I think wesabe is more powerfulBut clearly mint has established itself as the market leader
Humana is developing “games for health” check out http://crumpleitup.com/http://patientslikeme.com may be the model of what healthcare could be like – open, social, data driven, crowd sourcing and other likewise buzz words.I think the anticipated healthcare disruption piece is long ways off. It needs some pretty basic Web 1.0 innovation first. Look at what happened to GoogleHealth when a person tried to use it to import data http://bit.ly/BWKk
Disruption, historically, often came from the suppression of the middle man. I like the peer produced Mutual/HEdge funds as well as the peer-to-peer lending concept (posted by dremoran). The internet with its social networks tools brings many ways to increase the funds available to individuals at a lower cost with more flexible rules.The concept of ‘crowd funding’ for startups seems to be an interesting concept to explore as well. A very relevant service or product will appeal to many that would certainly be willing to invest small amounts in the venture. Social network tools allowing tracking of entrepreneurs performance and history would give good indication on the risk taken.
Like prosper has struggled with the regulatory framework, crowdsourced VC has some regulatory hurdlesBut I’d love to see it happen
This is similar to some thoughts I posted on my blog around the fact that amateurs are becoming the new professionals (http://disruptions.wordpres….The Internet and social software is giving power and voice to the people; inexpensively connects thoughts and ideas, and causing new actions to occur. For instance, health care is changing from provider centric to consumer centric via new applications, electronic records, and connected monitoring devices.Another thought is that even if world governments don’t catch onto the new student and education, schools will be forcibly disrupted by discontent and subtly disrupted by attrition. Most kids will be teaching each other and communicating with other by blinding texting with their phones in class while mutely smiling and nodding at their instructors. Will this cause lower or higher engagement in the process of learning? Will the world population get smarter or dumber?
Very thought-provoking slide show. I might have missed this, but it seems you haven’t included a group that is going to be extremely influential in the coming years – the senior population.If the demographics in the US, Japan, Europe and China – and Facebook – keep trending the way they’re going, this group will soon become the largest group of possible adopters on Earth, and quite possibly could become one of the largest and most active online populations.What kind of disruptions (other than pharma/device technologies) would benefit this group?
Well one place is education. Seniors have a lot to offer when it comes to education. And they are also big consumers of education
I agree, Fred. But I was thinking more about seniors as excellent potential inhabitants of online worlds, such as SecondLife.On a recent blog, Bill Gurley shared stats that show SecondLife is in the number one spot re user minutes – and the #2 spot in terms of PC gaming titles.Seniors have a lot of two very important things: time and money. Put that into the context of an online world geared for their demographic and things could get interesting. Talk about disruption!
On slide #3, I don’t think a stock price chart best captures how the Internet is disruptive. Stocks rise and fall for lots of reasons other than a company’s past results and future prospects. A chart showing how many uniques Digg has versus NYT.com and CNN.com, or a chart showing fall-offs in newspaper subscriptions would be more telling.Healthcare differs from the other three industries for one reason: the heatlhcare “intermediary” is, for many people, a trusted primary care physician who has treated you for years and who cannot be disintermediated without jeopardizing the quality of your healthcare. For all the talk of fully digital and accessible health records, someone still has to read them, interpret them, and make hard judgment calls, based in part on a familiarity with the patient’s physical, mental and emotional health. And healthcare as a whole will suffer is the role of the primary care physician is diminished. On the other hand, I don’t think many people feel the same about their financial broker, utility company or, in many cases, even their children’s teachers.
Excellent criticisms. I will include them in the final version of the talk
Regarding Healthcare, a discussion point would of course be the initiatives of Google Health and Microsoft Healthvault. Lots of good/bad/ugly discussion points there. Can these major players disrupt the healthcare ecosystem (read: jungle) with these platform plays? Can the public trust these health stores with their data? Can the standards for input/output and storage be industry controlled (vs. proprietary). Can the ownership model truly be user centric vs platform or provider centric. If execution is successful, Microsoft/Google may help save healthcare. If not, it could divide the ecosystem and handicap it for years, imo.
Databases are dangerous. No system can be secured and the larger it is the bigger a target for technical and social hacks. Celebrity medical releases with our current system demonstrates how a small group of trusted people with lots to lose can’t be trusted. A universal database is completely unacceptable.Your medical record needs to be owned by you. Backups and alternative access needs to work similar to current process – all backups encrypted using exceptionally strong public keys, with multiple iterations encrypted using the public keys of the doctors you’ve dealt with in the past. No administrator, tech, or hacker should be able to access an arbitrary record. It reduces the efficiencies available but people just can’t be trusted with large datasets as the repeated losses of data in the US and UK show.
Timing is a huge factor in disruption.Often we can see the forces pressing on an existing system, but we don’t know how long it will take to actually disrupt it. It’s easy to be too early or too late into a market .It’s like water behind a dam. We can see the level rising, but when does the it fall? You run your calculations based on engineering principles, but it’s hard to predict a strong wind, an earthquake, a cat walking across the top with just the right set of steps…
Very true. There’s a lot of pain being too early with investments that are ultimately correctBut you do have to be in it to win it
Let the Students Teach…www.DigitalMediaSchool.comI like it!
Hi Fred,It seems to me with health care and prevention, there are several things you could discuss like collection of information as a disruptive force for medical information toward the monopoly that insurance and health care providers currently maintain. Or the prevention aspect that currently is invisible to most users and providers but that might radically change the way gyms, trainers, and other wellness providers currently serve their customers.Another disruption coming is the ways that enterprises serve other businesses or users. There is a problem with the way that companies share information internally and with users. Those companies that figure out how to better share info those inside, with companies and users they provide to, will heavily disrupt companies that don’t.Also.. you didn’t say anything about location data and what that will mean in mobile. What does it do to us and our business and personal relationships when we can trigger info based upon location, or know where others are, or have them know where we are? I think that’s a huge one.I’m sure there are more but that’s what I can think of off the top of my head.mary
Thanks mary. Some good areas to mine here
Fred,I present here some facts (on the healthcare component) that I had gathered from a previous project that I had worked on. In a way the looming healthcare crisis will be far more disruptive to the U.S, unless we find disruptive technologies to directly address some of the issues related of cost of providing healthcare. The numbers on it are staggering.In a detailed study on digitized medical records (released September 2005) RAND Corporation, a nonprofit research organization said that computerizing medical records could save the U.S. $81 billion annually and enhance the quality of care. In a survey conducted by Markle Foundation, a Washington, D.C. based private foundation indicated that 70 percent of Americans are in support of a nationwide health information exchange or network for doctors and patients. The survey went on to say that Privacy & Security remains the top priority for any such network that will ultimately be accepted by consumers given the greater safety and benefits that such a system offers. The key question that follows is how can a person prevent misuse/abuse of his/her personal medical information. What if such a system were used illegally to discriminate against people. Once any personal information is out, there’s no “undo”.Cost of Healthcare: Healthcare spending now represents about 16% of the U.S. economy. It is expected to increase to about 20 % of the economy within the next decade. This increase will be consistent and unyielding, according to analysts at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMMS). This alarming trend will definitely lead to significant policy battles and changes in the coming years. The American public will need to confront the underlying question about the cost of, supply of and demand for health care services.The U.S. Govt is burdened with the cost of public health insurance coverage. Medicare spending will more than double, from $309 Billion in 2004 to $792 Billion in 2015. Medicaid spending will grow from $293 Billion to $670 Billion during the same time span. The nation’s total health care bill by 2015 will rise to more than $4 Trillion. As more people become eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, it is anticipated that the US government will to have pay over half of the nation’s medical costs. This comes directly from public tax dollars.These sobering numbers make it imperative for companies to address the need to find disruptive technologies that aim directly at reducing the cost of healthcare.
I figure you heard about CA Gov Arnold wanting all science and math books to be open source software style online books in the coming years. Math by wikipedia… Im a little skeptical but with digital books and your hand STNG book reader (ie kindle) the old way of doing things things is out
I’m with you on the grand opportunity that awaits in the disruption of the Healthcare ecosystem. Recently, I’ve migrated my career from Digital Media to Healthcare IT since I believe there is terrific room for innovation here and it’s just getting started (evn putting the EMR initiatives aside).I’m very excited with the trends of pushing early-stage health assessments/consultations away from Hostpitals/Private Practice offices and out towards “the leaf nodes” so to speak. At-home Healthcare and Wellness is a huge trend that will be cresting in the next 5-10 years.Also, this is exciting and a good “re-imaging” of retail space: http://www.nytimes.com/2009…Although I don’t like to see market crushing companies like Wal-Mart continue to acquire more muscle, but from a “topographic” standpoint (I always like to see things as System’s Architecture viewpoint) it’s the right idea.However, I do seem to recal that you feel that Healthcare is an impenetrable mess from an investor’s standpoint, with too many vested interests on behalf of the healthcare providers and payers to compete against. Do you still feel that way?At 17% of GDP, Heatlhcare represents $2.4T of spending a year. Any minute improvements in efficencies would yield trendous value. This brings to mind Josh Kopelman’s Law of wanting to shrink markets via disruptive value creation: “We love investing in technologies and business models that are able to shrink existing markets. If your company can take $5 of revenue from a competitor for every $1 you earn – let’s talk!” (http://redeye.firstround.co…
I really struggle with healthcare. Its a huge oppty but its not end to end digital and the path is not clear to meI love josh’s ‘shrink markets’ mantra. I’m going to add it to the talk
The path is not clear to anyone because of 1) current reform efforts 2) slow adoption curve 3)lack of an easily adopted solution (how does any medical practice get their paper records into digital formats and make them searchable), 4)cost, 5)data that doesn’t interoperate 6)HIPAA. But I love being involved in it because for the past twenty years it has felt on the verge.
I talked quite a bit about this yesterday. I hope the video comes out on youtube soon because the live delivery is a way more complete treatment of this topic
I’m not sure I can make a convincing counter-argument here, but – to my mind – that human element in the “not end-to-end digital” is an indication of massive inefficiencies that are (or will be soon) ripe for the picking.If you think of any industry or process that is ready for disruption, it is along that Josh Kopelman mantra whereby markets are shrunk exactly because they had been artificially inflated for too long. It is precisely that automation step – removing the inefficient manual steps – which unlocks tremendous value.Simple case: Think Craigslist. Classifieds was a horridly inefficient manualy process where a “database” (printed listings in a newspaper) was manually sold/edited.To me, this is the same as healthcare. There are several components of Healthcare/Wellness spectrum that are really just about conveyance of information, assesment of status and wellness, establishment of a plan of action, and evaluation of adherence to the prescribed plan. Much of this does not have to involve high-margin costs of direct physician care. Hence, my interest in several trends towards Physician Assistants as well as these retail-clinics at Walmart. That is “market-shrinking” activity in my eyes.Ultimately, one component of Healthcare is purely physical and therefore must be a manual, relationship based (i.e. Doctor/patient) interaction. However, there are too many inefficiencies in the mix that will ultimately (hopefully) innovated out of existence.With regards to the “path”, I don’t exactly know either at this point in time. But – along with the Education market – I sense big opportunity, but it will have to be hard fought.
Yeah but if its power to the people, the doctor is in good shape compared to most middle men
According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), approximately 105,000 students are being “unschooled” in the US or 7% of the total homeschool population.
If you plan to talk about surviving on a disrupted market this reading « How to Identify Your Enemies Before They Destroy You » by Farshad Rafii and Paul J. Kampas is just excellent. It clarifies the different steps which occur during a disruption and helps to detect the potential threat.Regards,Bertil
one of the most significant aspects of ‘disruptive industries’ is the fact that the term ‘industry’ has become an oxymoron – we’re seeing a shift to ‘disruptive services’ ….
Oooh. Great point
Interesting subject, I want to share my thoughts on what I believe to be the root cause of the problem that the energy and finance sector is facing today. Hope it can give you some input.Sustainability in everything we do needs to be the “guiding light” for the future. Unsustainablity is the core problem to the economical and ecological crisis that the globe is facing at the moment. Finance and energy sectors are prime candidates. Biggest challenge is to change the mindset of people to understand that volume is not a KPI for success and that less sometimes means more. Economical growth that is built on access to cheap energy will come to an end and we need to develop new ways to measure performance.Will future energy companies focus on reducing energy consumption rather on building new capacity? Will hospitals take a more holistic view on customers with a cradle to grave approach focusing on preventive measures like healthy diet and exercise and not leaving this to third parties?
I like adding the notion of sustainability to the disruption frameworkI too am a big fan of sustainability and all that the word means
I think power to the people is really the key idea behind all of this. Technology by the nature of its open structure decentralizes traditional power structures. I think a corollary to this is an economic shift from a sprawling global focus to a smaller more local focus.In energy, think of all the structure in place around the global oil industry with its cartels and monopolies, the entrenched infrastructure of thousands of gas stations dotted across the country and gov’t support/bailouts for the auto industry.In healthcare, look at how medical schools control the supply of doctors, powerful HMOs claim to “compete” while costs continue to rise and again, gov’t support and structure allows the industry to maintain its status quo.I think technology inherently empowers individuals by allowing them to do things more efficiently. So a task that once took a giant organization can now be accomplished by an empowered and efficient individual.
Yup. Totally agreeBut its still worth mapping out how to profit from that insight
High five for slide 10 (end to end digital ;)Never heard of peer produced mutual hedge funds before… crowd sourced/social design investments… hmmmvirtual currency will be explosive until they figure out how to tax itEducation: With Aneesh Chopra in, hacking ed should be huge focus change from college ed to business ed for startups? Big fan of Seth :DEnergy: Not sure how disruptive it would be but new material science may help our energy industry (lighter weight power lines that can hold current better over longer distances), local decentralized power suppliers. I did some reading on thin film PV cells that were being developed to be painted onto structures (http://www.squidoo.com/DyeS…Health: remote surgeries, nano-biotech? (http://www.zyvex.com/nanote…
Remote surgeries sounds pretty disruptive!
This presentation got me thinking about our education system, and matching our greatest needs to our work ( http://bit.ly/cR4DT)Maybe not the right place to ask, but I have a good friend out in Vegas (multidisciplinary background, did cyber security IT for many years here on Long Island, got burned out and moved to Vegas, he’s into photography, desktop pub, people managing, and self directed work) that would probably consider any interesting opportunities out his way.
Can he manage a large call center?
double posted (the reply to diqus finally got through)
I’m confident he can given his track record. Feel free to contact me with via email (first initial last name at google mail) or you can direct message me in friendfeed.Thanks again for being super generous with your time/network info either way
Fred I don’t know how much truth (in Kid Mercury’s words) you want to drop on the mighty GOOG, but I would say your slides are a bit light on future revenue models.As I’ve mentioned here before, whilst people seem reasonably happy giving up some of their screen acreage to adverts in static web sites, I don’t see this trend continuing as web apps (SaaS) become more prevalent.Technical issues will mean ads will become much more irritating (like those on TV) – and so there will be a move towards the net equivalent of HBO.This represents a great opportunity for whoever cracks the HBO net revenue model – but also a major threat to the dominant supplier of net adverts.
YupI’ve got some thoughts on that and as you might imagine I don’t think a talk at google is the right place to disclose them
I am surprised you missed this. I believe another sector that is ripe for disruption is the food industry. A mentor of mine pointed out one way to make “sure” money is find an industry or product that people use everyday. The food industry is in the cross hairs of a number of important trends. It is the second largest user or of fossil fuels. Mono-crop agriculture (such as corn and soybean) directly contribute to degradation of the environment and rise in obesity (just try to eat products without high fructose syrup (corn). Industrialization of production of meat has created a host of problems — over reliance on corn feed, self regulating, antibiotic infused, fuel consuming, highly polluting, meat production that is ripe for contamination can not continue . The recent rise in food recalls is directly contributory to centralized production. Small farmers are struggling but consumers are willing and eager to pay more for healthful, local food. The disconnect of farm to fork will be pierced by system where consumer can learn about the source of their sustenance. Why is it a local hunter can shoot a deer, dress it, and donate proceeds to local food pantry but local farmer can not process a steer and donate it to the same pantry? Something is not right here with a basic, fundamental industry everyone relies on everyday!We need to return to a more sustainable, sun based, local, organic agriculture system. As information want to be free. Someday should food be free? Is this not a value added goal worth pursuing and certainly attainable in our lifetime. It worked for thousand of years and we need to return to it and the way to do it is by knowledge sharing, education and more realistic regulation that supports small scale local food production.Good luck with your talk
I think the steer to table via abattoir had more to do with preventing cattle rustling than hygienic control. Hygiene was the excuse, cattle rustling was the target.
I agree but I am not sure that its going to be as easy to disrupt because of the logistics of food
If there’s one thing I really dislike in the California Ideology, it’s this idea of “disruption”. Because the techlibertarians are always talking about disruption, even at times with malicious glee, because it’s always disruption *of somebody or something else* and never them. It’s always “out there” that the disruption “has to happen”. And when you as a class keep disrupting everyone else, expect a backlash down the line, it’s coming.Always, with “disruptive tech” you have to ask WHOSE disruption? and who gets to decide that?Disruptive technology always acts *on other people*. It never touches those who made the technology. They go on sipping lattes in Mountain View and chatting on i-phones and such while devastation happens somewhere else, to someone else. If the effects of the disruption were something they could feel on their own skins immediately, right now, we’d see more accountability.Take the concept of free newspapers, which we can see now from that historic YouTube clip from the 1980s was a function of tekkies mindful then that *their own time and technology* was running $5 an hour, so they had to throw in the newspaper as a freebie. Disrupt somebody else’s dollar, not your own, of course, goes their thinking. So when their own costs lowered, they still clung to the idea that we could “never” have micropayments or pay for digital content — and now we see the results. Disrupt, disrupt — and always *somebody else*.On health care, it will be even more visible how disruptive technology truly disrupts and destroys — to no good. Already enormous amounts of doctors’ time is spent staring at screens and inputting data into forms and not looking at live human beings. The technology then dictates outsourcing, mass processes, depersonalization, and becomes less accountable, more intrusive, more dangerous to privacy. I think you could easily make the case that part of the soaring costs of health care has been due to the enormous investments every doctor felt they had to make in computerization, networking, automatic electronic diagnostic equipment — a digital reader of blood for diabetics costs more than the old chemical strips. Less and less people will be able to afford all the health care they need, and more and more data will be decoupled from live patients and doctors and be used against people, especially genetics.The next disruptive area that will happen apart from any technological tinkering will be in the area of electricity and hydropower. Just as last year’s cold snap in Central Asia sparked increased gas consumption and affected first Eurasia then Europe with higher energy costs and then food costs, and spread further, so the increasing strain to electric grids in this region, weather/climate change disruptions, and the rise again of gas prices will cause another big whiplash of high food prices and straining of the Internet, which depends at the end of the day on electricity. The vulnerable hole in just about anything you discuss with such enthusiasm is plain old electricity.Even if we were to bring on 45 or more nuclear power stations in this country, for example, overcoming green groups’ opposition, they could not be brought on line fast enough to really make a dent in the global warming issue, experts say, nor will they meet the increasing demand for electricity due to exponential growth of not only the Internet as Internet, but the Internet as the networking of just about everything internally, medical, health, education, etc. and bunches of gadgets.
This is darwinsm. Its been going on for as long as life has existed
I realize this may be a bit late but I noticed that your presentation was a bit light in the health care section. If you are interested in some concrete examples of using information technology in the area of prevention I can send you some materials under separate cover for some of the work my company did with the government of South Africa.A quick summary: “last year with the government of Gauteng, the most populated state of South Africa, where we installed a cadre of methods to help manage diabetes care: web information, social media, clinics and cell phone reminders. By simply reminding people about their appointments we increased patient’s compliance from 31% to 73% in our pilot group.” (http://sviokla.com/context/…This increased compliance is a big deal because management of chronic diseases is quite expensive, especially as complications which could have been prevented by routine care arise.
Great stuff I could have and would have used this data. I will in any new versions I give
What strikes me as missing from this ppt is the impact on the enterprise and the enterprise worker. It may be that’s intentional due the focus on consumer tech, but it seems to me that corporations are getting the short end of the stick here, as they are secondary recipients (due to their lack of abilities to absorb/implement quick change) of all this change. They are currently being marginalized by social media/networking trends and those trends that are mentioned in the ppt could swoop them again. It’s just an observation, but begs the question- what is the (large) enterprise of the future really going to look like/be impacted? It could be a way to end the talk just to incent thinking in that direction as well.
Maybe its the end of the firm as we know it and I feel fine
Bingo…that’s where I was headed. Many will be marginalized by all this change.
I’m genuinely suprised that Voip and P2P didnt rate a mention – except in the arena of p2p finance and virtual money.After all isnt the entire meme of social interraction based on Peer to Peer and sharing of knowledge, best restaurants – best deals, best music, best movies. Isnt that why the masses are leaving the print and appointment media? The best is on the net, instant immediate gratiffication, why look at yesterdays news.Emerging countries or nations where the communication provider enjoys a monopoly are forcing the option of p2p on low bandwidth users. A nice fast 1024 MBps connection is capable of streaming youtube or a movie from iTunes. But what about the majority of the worlds population who are on 512/256 KB or slower connections – purely because scarcity increases value. The user pushback is the use of technologies to equalize the deficiency; P2P.P2P is a technology not a crime. IFS (Illegal file sharing is a crime.)P2P is a meme P2P is survivalP2P is the Internet equivalent of the public market square. A good way to pick up on the gossip;and P2P Voip not transiting the telecommunications carriers may be the biggest disrupter yet.In 1997, a few colleagues and I built an ATM network atop TCP-IP. We then altered the tcp-ip to run over 802.11(a).A mesh on a mesh on a mesh.Adding the power of P2P (here use a little of my processor, here my directory entries can see the person you are looking for……..) will make P2P VOIP on Cell the media divorce device of the millenium.I stopped buying newspapers five years ago.I stopped buying Music four years ago.I stopped buying Movies three years ago.I stopped paying for international phone calls two years ago.And this year, I stopped paying for minutes on my mobile to mobile phone calls.I look forward to finding out what I dont have to pay for next year.
Eager to see your thoughts on energy, and curious about your six words, and how “personalization” and “hyper-local” things local news needs to be addressing, fit in with your vision away from media/entertainment. Thank you.