Fuel18 has officially ended! Thanks to everyone who joined us today! See you next year?
Don't forget to grab a goodiebag while leaving!
What a great second edition of Fuel! Networking time now.
The second time around
Fuel18 was a cornucopia of great new ideas… and now it’s up to people to see opportunities for change, and to show a willingness to change. The emergence of new technologies is accelerating, and there is no time for typical European ‘Yes, but’-hesitations. If Elon Musk had been European, say from Belgium, would he even have dared to try and land rocket stages on a pontoon, dancing on ocean waves? Companies must learn and do what is essential, and even more, what is relevant for customers. Your main competitors are not your peers, but outsiders. True, today it is also a matter of trust, and technologies are not fully crystallized yet. “We’re but at the beginning!” and yes, it can be both “scary and wow” at the same time. So, get to the people in your company that don’t have a clue about what they’re doing, because what they do is unprecedented. Because what they do is so new, there are no rules to follow. Unleash these people, so they don’t have to battle the 99% ‘others’ that know what they do (and do it the way ‘it should be done’). Innovate like crazy and try things! Start from your strengths! And prepare for the new era of urgency, because changes will come faster, and even faster yet.
Rana June on emotion technology
You don’t know if you don’t measure. For Rana June, seeing an electrocardiogram at an early age was an eye opener. “It was an artifact of humanity on a screen.” Today she focuses on how companies can make their products and services ‘emotion enabled’. She does this to improve the bidirectional relations between people and machines. Machines learn about the emotions of people, with the help of multitude of sensors, and create a richer interactive experience. Is this hard to believe? June has plenty of examples, as an interactive concert with the dance intensity as a measure. Or how enthusiastic fans can spur an underdog team to great play. Never underestimate the power of emotion. But beware. Developers must take into account how people relate to near-humanlike machines. It appears to bring the worst out of people, with rudeness galore. Also beware if those systems ‘learn’ from large amounts of toxic data, as stupid or offensive remarks of threats or bullying…. So, do it responsible. The benefits are plenty, with directed emotion uniting people. With emotion becoming a new ‘color’ with which you paint. With emotion a means of predicting the future, how people will react in specific situations (and how to make it more agreeable for them). Understand that emotions are a universal language… and while creating these new technologies: remember what makes us human!
Fireside chat with Ian Forrester, Rebecca Clyde and Xander Steenbrugge
Chatbots, AI, machine learning, voice based user interface…. How will this work
out in real daily use? There will be room for different interfaces, with voice
interfaces often popular in hands free environments, dixit Rebecca Clyde.
Because it’s about convenience, says Ian Forrester. With AI behind this all, won’t
that be creepy? Understand that there are still plenty of people involved in the
background, reassures Xander Steenbrugge. Indeed, companies must realize that
they deal with humans, so they must pay attention to keep it humanly
acceptable. The real challenge? For both companies and users to grasp what they
really will be doing with those new forms of interfaces with services. That will be
a matter of the next couple of years and must be determined within companies
by all stakeholders. As well as how to use it correctly, dixit Rebecca Clyde. And
smartly, as data will become more smart and subtle, with better understanding
of feelings, to improve what can be improved. When you can determine whether
somebody is frustrated or not, use that info to put this person at ease! With this
person ultimately being happy. Is this too creepy? People are used to express
their feelings to animals, and now even to things. And it is quite possible that
those things are even more efficient than people. A therapeutic bot, 24/7
available with endless patience, can be of more benefit to a person in need than a
therapist! And no, these new developments are not the privilege of large
companies. Focus on solve a local problem, and offer these solutions worldwaide
before the big ones get interested. The large companies solve billion dollar
problems. Small companies get in on the local scale!
Do you know where your customers spend most of their digital time? To answer that question, let’s take a trip to China, where WeChat is EVERYTHING. In China you live out your entire life on WeChat. Both private and professional. The truth is: that is not just the case in China. We are using messaging all over the world. This is where we are spending most of our (digital) time. Fact: Out of the 65 million businesses on Facebook, only 29 million are conducting business through Messenger. Why? Because most of them haven’t found a way to automatically handle those interactions. So they simply chose to ignore them. The answer? Coupling messaging with AI to create really exciting customer interactions. Because in the end, it’s all about what feeling your customers walk away with. What’s next? By 2020 most businesses will have a chatbot. And Emotion Intelligence will be able to distinguish sarcasm from sincerity. Until then, chatbot scripting still requires human help. We need the humanists, the poets and the writers to shape AI. We need all of you.
What if your pajamas would help you get out of your bed? When going for her big final student collection, Jasna Rokegem hit upon the idea to link technology and fashion. Almost ‘the final technology frontier’. Technology in garments is not an everyday event today. But it can be so, with feedback from brainwave interface to make moods, stress, your attention span visible to the rest of the world. Even to help you train your mind. Ultimately, ‘smart’ garments will be adapting to your innermost, and changing to your clothing needs of the moment. Think sport, business, traveling, indoor or outdoor… Even sustainability will gain from new technology, as garments will not require washing anymore. And don’t stop at the boundary of your own cloths. Have your garments talk to the garments of everybody else, with a view of the whole network around you. As the result of a neural network. Futuristic dreams? Today Jasna Rokegem works with top partners as NASA to translate these interface ideas into reality. And again, industries will change fundamentally. Imagine uploading your body scan to your favorite fashion shops. You see the invisible rendered visible! Your innermost, your environment… One outfit to rule them all!
Virtual and Augmented reality are a multi-billion (yep, with a ‘b’) dollar industry. And there is a reason why big tech companies like Amazon and Facebook are investing so much money in this technology. That reason is a shift in content. We are rethinking reality, content and what is happening in the future. Content is shifting from 2D flat to 3D, 360 and sometimes holographic. Extended reality – an overarching term that combines virtual, augmented and mixed reality – will change the way we think, watch television and shop. People now want to experience what they are buying. Even Facebook has said that they see 3D posts and 360 videos as the next form in content sharing. But XR will also change the way we work, especially in the medical field (think complicated surgeries). And last but not least, it will change the way we play and socialize. The journey into the future has only just begun. And it’s going to be an interesting one. Who knows, by Fuel 2025 I will ‘holograph’ in… see you there!
Fuel is booming!
This afternoon we Re-Think Reality and Re-Think Customer.
Even during lunch, you won't have to miss a thing. You can take the time to read a thing or two on the first bunch of keynotes. Take a look at the speakers pages at fuel.be/speakers and get to know what Dietmar, Peter, Simon and Ian had to say.
After already two series of interesting keynotes, it's time to re-fuel with some lunch.
A post shared by Tonickx (@tonickx_dressing_people) on
The one with 9M followers: Casey Neistat!
So you have a baby, a lousy job, and are deep in debt because you bought an iMac to make video’s? Meet Casey Neistat at the start of his career. Or rather non-career. Today he’s a YouTube star because he never followed, or even knew the rules of film making. But he had his own voice. And ultimately companies and brands signed up to 'connect with their public’ by having Neistat speak to them. Content? If you think to follow a recipe, forget it. That recipe is old hat even before you’ve finished. Go for content, voiced with passion. And you’ll see how this content has influence. Even when Neistat was only doing a little 40 dollar movie on how batteries of an iPad couldn’t be replaced, he got 5 million viewers. “That’s an epiphany!” Even with no Nike products on screen, his ‘make the most of it movie’ became the most influential Nike movie – connecting the brand to its audience. Even though he was a high school dropout, he became a MIT fellow. And even as a non-coder, he got VC’s to fund his technology company, he sold to a multinational. Why? The tech company yielded the vlogs, the vlogs exposed the company to the world, and resulted in it being taken over. Follow your passion, don’t follow in somebody’s footsteps, don’t follow the instruction manual.” Be excited and confident to embrace what you don’t have experience with!
AI & creating content
The art of storytelling? It isn’t gone. We have just forgotten about it. Ian Forrester should know, being a senior ‘Firestarter’ producer for the BBC. “Storytelling should be immersive, engaging, participatory and adaptive. Imagine you are driving to work and listening to a podcast. And the podcast can adapt and change based on your journey. That is a unique experience that your customers might be really interested in.” It’s all about variations, not versions. Forrester illustrates this with a classic scene from a sitcom, in which he created over 50,000 scalable variations. From narrative flow to soundtrack. “Because, you see, media is not a solid block. It has to be blown up into tiny little objects. And every one of those objects make the story.” There are lots of ways of storytelling we are not even touching yet. Artificial Intelligence can really help with that. But don’t feed it garbage either, because garbage will come out. “Don’t fear intelligent machines. When you put machines and humans together, rather than competing, suddenly you get amazing results. In the end, creativity and arts are all about mistakes… and choosing which ones to make.”
"I'm sure this room was designed by Apple. It doesn't have windows."
Fireside chat with Jens Mortier, Simon de la Rouvière and Caterina Rindi
How can we make blockchain more mainstream? With experimentation and continued development of useful applications. We need to get more people involved. All kinds of people: Philosophers, designers… It takes a team to make this work.
How can marketing be influenced by blockchain? Blockchain is going to allow us to own our personal data and to decide how they can be used. Marketing needs to think about how to convince people to hand over or sell those data.
What is the solution for blockchain education? Meet-ups, how to videos, books, talks… There are many resources available online. It is going to take people who are thinking in new and different ways.
Get the Fuel vibes going!
Fuel18 is going full steam ahead and we are feeling tremendous! And so were our first speakers.
#fuel18@simondlr blockchain helps a complex problematic like economics for artists and musicians...
Simon de la Rouvière: Programmer by day, musician by night
Music and hardcore cutting edge technology as blockchain meet each other? Yes,
it can! And Simon de la Rouviere is the living proof of this happy marriage. IT
professional by day, but a musician at heart, he has found in blockchain the true
solution of three major problems for artists to make a fair living. How do they a
fair payment without institutions taking their cuts? Blockchain makes direct
payments between user and all artists involved a straightforward proposition.
Smart contracts will even automate the fair distribution of this payment! Even
more, blockchain will help in maintaining a permanent record of who is actually
entitled to a payment, because it creates a transparent and immutable record of
rightful artists. Quite a contrast with a failed attempt to create a global repertoire
database – failed because nobody was found to maintain it. And blockchain also
provides a permanent repository of all the efforts artists have put into their art,
rather than being at the mercy of a service that may disappear in a flash. And
furthermore, Simon de la Rouviere stresses how initial efforts to put blockchain
at the service of artists will benefit the independent artists. And will restore the
ownership, the involvement of music lovers into the works of art they collect. So
that artists make a living, and can make more music. And make the world sing!
Peter Hinssen returns to Fuel!
Peter had the “easy” task of making the bridge between Dietmar Dahmen’s chain saw and the burning hot topic of blockchains. His first piece of advice: “Spend more time with criminals, because they always use the best technology”. But technology, now more than ever, is putting the internet in crisis. Hacks, break-ins, breaches… Trust becomes essential. And if we can’t fix these trust issues, we’re not going to survive. Weapons of mass distraction are turning into weapons of math destruction. Black Mirror is becoming the new normal. And if you want to see the new normal, go to China. “There is a new Cold War. Artificial Intelligence is becoming the new electricity and digital a new geopolitical game. With China as the aggressor.” This is something we have to watch and really understand. Are we there yet? We haven’t even begun…
"Get rid of your pillows of comfort... with a chainsaw!"
Fuel18 has officially kicked off with a spectacular talk by Dietmar Dahmen! No chair will stay unharmed!
Do you have to be Superman to survive the death of your old analog industrial world? No, but it helps to break through the brick wall of status quo! Beware, you don’t have to chuck out the old completely, but o for the marriage of analog and digital. With the full understanding that ‘no change’ is not an option. “New makes you strong, the old makes you weak.” Go for the new with a team that includes all the competencies you need to get the new done! Fast! Think AI, VR, blockchain, individualization! And understand your position: compete where you can. In the field of experience. The old customer journey is dead. No less than 89% of customers state that this is where they ‘click’ with you. Make the customer happy. Make it simple for him, you yourself take on the complexity, do the heavy lifting. “You do the plug, he does the play!” Do it fast, be ready at the customer even before he’s at the touch point. It’s about connectivity, creating a total platform. A platform that’s scalable on a universe scale, unlimited growth. Make it a virtual exchange, self governed, a true on demand economy. And cater for the individual as that is your customer, not the masses. A super challenge? Get of your pillows of comfort. Slash them with a chainsaw!