The Future According to Elon Musk

The Future According to Elon Musk

 

 Elon Musk is often labelled a dreamer, the closest we could get to a real-life Tony Stark. He is an innovative and motivational leader that uses his passion for technology to repeatedly deliver breathtaking results. Now, he is coalescing the various articulations of his business empire to create comprehensive solutions to climate issues and beyond.

The Frontline Against Climate Change

Upon completing a $2.6 billion acquisition of SolarCity, Musk secured a future where he can sell electric cars and solar roofs to customers under the Tesla brand. Although a few skeptics deemed this a risky move, his ‘dream big or go home’ attitude quickly silenced critics by unveiling an entire island run by solar power.

The island of Ta’u in American Samoa is more than 4,000 miles from the United States. Power outages are a regular occurrence in this remote location that heavily relies on diesel generators. It’s the perfect example of technology stepping in to improve the old way of doing things.

“Would you like a roof that looks better than a normal roof, last twice as long, cost less and by the way generates electricity?” – Elon Musk

Tesla’s microgrid of solar panels will supply nearly 100 percent of the Ta’u’s 600 residents’ energy requirements. The 5,300 solar panels along with 60 Tesla Powerpack batteries illustrate how the future is already here.

These technological advancements will particularly have a positive impact in the developing world. We have already seen this happen with nations skipping telephones and computers by going straight to smartphones. This is another huge reason that mobile browsing has officially overtaken desktop recently.

Renewable energy is an economical solution that could transform developing nations from no power to solar micro-grids within a few years. Removing the dreaded expense that surrounds our current energy infrastructure seems to be where the biggest leap forward has been made.

Sure, Ta’u is an easy test case, with its perfect weather and relatively uncomplicated energy needs. But, it is undeniably a shining example of what is possible. For those who reject the science of climate change, Elon Musk presents an alternative incentive: money. This is a cheaper option that concurrently benefits the planet and consequently its people. How can you argue with savings, high-quality products, and public interest?

Let’s Charge Forward

Why are so many people still doubtful of Musk’s ideas? I don’t understand the pushback. Yes, he is radical, but he consistently proves naysayers wrong. There is something objectively exciting about lowering the carbon footprint on an island where the residents have experienced global warming first hand.

And there is something admirable about tackling a problem that the future administration of one of the world’s most powerful nations deems a fiction. He needs our support to continue his good work. Those of you who believe in the urgency of climate change should support him as one of the few companies championing this cause.

In Sum

The reality is that harkening to the past is good only for inspiration rather than re-creation. We cannot go back in time. We can build a brighter and better future by learning from our mistakes and continuing to evolve together with the public good in mind. To make America great again, we should strive to support those among us who champion the causes we believe in—whatever they may be.

If history has taught us anything at all, it’s that those who dare to throw caution to the wind to change the world are usually the ones who do. After proving that Tesla can power an island for three days without sunlight, it appears that Elon Musk has given us yet another reason to believe

 

This Article first Appeared here

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#MACE16 : Role of Personas In Business Innovation

Hi, its me again.. have you ever wanted to understand patterns in behaviour of buyers of a product? are you looking to innovate (something new) or to improve an existing service?

Applying personas to design thinking process will help you take a step back and build empathy with users, helping  you to properly listen and walk in their shoes.

Personas are “not real people or average users but user models described in detail to have the key attributes, needs, values, lifestyle, culture and personal background of the group they represent” (Giulia Piu).

Alice Comi a Lecturer in Business Design in the School of Strategy, Marketing and Innovation at Kingston Business School, London categorically stated that ” Personas are not specific users but rather ideal types that are built upon observation of multiple users.” 

A persona shows attitude, behaviour, emotions and anything that will give more context to understand the personas behaviour.

Image Source: https://www.smashingmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/04-running-persona-opt.jpg

“Personas were informally developed by Alan Cooper in the early ’80s as a way to empathize with and internalise the mindset of people who would eventually use the software he was designing.”

How Are Personas Created?

Personas can be created in a myriad of ways, This includes;

  • Interview and/or observe an adequate number of people.
  • Find patterns in the interviewees’ responses and actions, and use those to group similar people together.
  • Create archetypical models of those groups, based on the patterns found.
  • Drawing from that understanding of users and the model of that understanding, create user-centered designs.

Conclusion

Designers don’t always know what is best — but sometimes users do and that is what personas are for: to stand up and represent real users, since real users can’t be there when the design process takes place.

 

Additional Resources

#MACE16: From Design Thinking Class To Workshop Induction

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I was part of a group of #Mace16 student that attended a 3D workshop induction class at the Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture Kingston University London on the 25th of October 2016.  This is a well-equipped modern workshop facility with everything you’ll need to build a product prototype. The support staff took us through the workshop facilities and equipment’s. 

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We were introduced to both traditional and latest contemporary design tools at the workshop. We were also instructed to maintain high standards in safety practice since a workshop must always be regarded as a place of relatively high risk. The workshop houses fixed machinery and portable power tools that can maim or kill in moments of negligence, the greatest care must be taken at all times.

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 The workshop induction learning experience focuses on practical techniques for designing a new product that combines aesthetic and functional requirements.

#MACE16: 5 Key Steps of Design Thinking

What is Design Thinking?

Design thinking means working differently, it also a set of processes for solving problems, discovering opportunities, and generating innovative, human-centered solutions. At its heart, design thinking is about adopting a human-centered perspective and an attitude of continual experimentation.

Five Key Steps of Design Thinking

Step 1 – Empathy

Any social endeavour begins with the human element. It involves identifying the molecules that make up your target audience, getting under their skin and finding out what they value, what they want and how they look at the world.

Step 2 – Define

Every cogent work of design requires something of a mission statement to bring clarity and focus to your work. What exactly are you trying to convey? What and who are you addressing? What are you bringing to the table? Sometimes, a problem statement can be condensed to a word, almost a mantra that acts as a guiding principle and other times it might be too complex to condense into a paragraph even.

Step 3 – Ideate

What separates design thinking from other empirical forms of thinking is the primacy placed on thinking wide, being obtuse if you must, until you arrive at interesting solutions.

The first rule of brainstorming dictates that there are no rules, all ideas are welcome and encouraged.  Ideation gives us better answers to our problems and gives us a better idea of a prototype that can delight it’s users. Thinking creatively, having many voices and solutions helps us conjure up the best product for the user.

Step 4 – Prototype

How does one gauge the reactions of one’s users before the final big reveal? The design thinking process, in all it’s stages poses many nagging questions “Will it work?” or “How will they respond?” or even “Will they even get it at all?”. The best way to allay these fears is to come up with a prototype, a demo or a test model if you will. This can be pretty much anything that he user engages with, which is precisely why the ideation process often gives us interesting ideas for a solid prototype.

Step 5 – Test

Once you have sent out your prototypes, the next natural step is to solicit feedback from you users about their experience interacting with it. The way you choose to do this can even get you closer to your users, making yourself more personable and relatable. As mentioned earlier, it’s all about empathy!