“COMPANIES NEED TO SHAPE, NOT PREDICT, THE MARKET” Doug Green, Publisher, NZ Manufacturer WELCOME TO EMEX 2018! YOU WILL HAVE A GREAT TIME MEETING INNOVATORS ON THEIR STANDS, SHARING BUSINESS STORIES WITH FELLOW VISITORS AND ENHANCE YOUR BANK OF SKILLS, LISTENING TO KEY BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY SPEAKERS WHO WILL SHARE WITH YOU SOUND THINKING AND SOUND IDEAS TO BENEFIT YOUR COMPANY GOING FORWARD. Focussing on issues such as business regulation, staff retention and succeeding in the high technology world, which can be daunting, challenging us to perpetually review the future. Instead of just gradually improving or creating new products and services, businesses now need to look at everything that impacts on what they make and how it is used – and shape that wider ecosystem. Nearly always, this will involve collaborating with other firms and players - sometimes even with competitors. You find the competitive edge or a way to collaborate. NEW ZEALAND FIRMS SEEM TO HAVE THE FUNDAMENTALS OF WHAT IT TAKES TO SHAPE MARKETS, BUT VERY FEW ARE DOING IT – WHICH IS LIKELY RESULTING IN MANY LOST OPPORTUNITIES AND PRODUCT FAILURES. THE NEW TPP AGREEMENT MAY WELL BE THE CHANGE OF DIRECTION YOU NEED. These are some of the conventional-wisdom-busting conclusions reached by University of Auckland researchers, Associate Professor Suvi Nenonen and Professor Kaj Storbacka, from their three-year research project into market innovation. Market innovation means deliberately shaping existing markets or creating whole new ones. It often involves tech innovations, but not necessarily. It is about identifying the bottlenecks in the wider system – points where the need for a resource holds everything up - and fixing them. For instance, switching your business model from selling to leasing machinery means that customers need less capital to acquire the machinery, which makes the market bigger. ENGINEERING THE EXOSKELETON - FROM ALIENS TO MECHANICALLY ENHANCED HUMANS It’s called “market-shaping” or “market innovation”.
ENGINEERING THE EXOSKELTON
Editorial & Photos - Doug Green, NZ Manufacturer
SouthMACH. Inspired by the ‘power loader’ exoskeleton worn by Sigourney Weaver’s character in Aliens, Richard Little set out to design and build a pair of robotic legs. The resulting Rex Suits are operated by a joystick that allows the wearer to walk, move sideways, turn around, climb stairs, and exercise. Exoskeletons are hyped up as devices that will allow the injured and paralysed to walk,
elderly and stroke sufferers to remain independent for longer, the military to get more from soldiers, and even turn all of us into mechanically enhanced humans. THEY HAVE CAPTURED THE IMAGINATION OF RESEARCHERS ACROSS THE WORLD, FROM START-UPS TO NASA. A Scots-born engineer, Richard says he was motivated to develop the system after his childhood best friend Robert Irving was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Little and Irving co- founded Rex Bionics in 2003. Richard is passionate about using technology and particularly robotics to help people. Little said it was hard to describe the experience of watching someone stand and walk after being in a wheelchair for years. And to set you in the mood for a meal at EMEX do what Manoush Zomorodi explores the concept of “How boredom can lead to your most brilliant ideas.”
Here is an example of the innovation you often find at EMEX and
Manoush is great on practical advice like realising just how much