Industry issues in 2019

April 1, 2019

“If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.” ~Carl Sagan   So it’s March now … and the end of six weeks of some of the most unpleasant weather Minnesota has had in decades. Snow, cold, snow, cold, snow, cold, snow and cold together for variety, and …

The parallax view

March 1, 2019

“It is the obvious which is so difficult to see most of the time. People say ‘It’s as plain as the nose on your face.’ But how much of the nose on your face can you see, unless someone holds a mirror up to you?” ~Isaac Asimov   Since March 2008, our cover has featured …

Meeting customer demand for custom printed fabrics

February 1, 2019

“I’d said to my partner Stedman, ‘What am I going to talk about for ten days and ten nights at Nelson Mandela’s house?’ And Stedman said, ‘Why don’t you try listening?’” ~Oprah Winfrey Over the years, those of you who are regular readers have probably had your fill of hearing me say things like: “I …

Communication and community

January 1, 2019

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself, any direction you choose.” ~Dr. Seuss Pillsbury, known for dough, has been piping the smells of freshly baked cinnamon rolls into selected theaters across the country—a campaign designed to get movie-goers to purchase cinnamon rolls during the holidays. The scent …

Sustainability, industry trends, and rooftop revels

December 1, 2018

“It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment.”  ~Ansel Adams Just in case you missed the recent announcement: IFAI’s offices in Roseville, Minn., have just installed solar energy panels on the (flat) roof to reduce energy usage, and possibly even sell some of it back to the grid. …

Royalty checks

October 1, 2018

“The question isn’t who is  going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me?” ~Ayn Rand The first time Minnesota hosted a Super Bowl, it was January 26, 1992. The Washington Redskins met the Buffalo Bills at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome for Super Bowl XXVI, with the Redskins on top 37–24. The …

Any messages?

August 1, 2018

You want to know what to buy? The business that makes an object of desire is now the worst source of information about it. The best source is all of us. Doc Searls, David Weinberger, Two “Cluetrain Manifesto”  authors, Jan. 2015 Communication is content. Markets are conversations. Electronics are (nearly) ubiquitous. And Generations Y and …

Industry 5.0

July 1, 2018

It was probably a $200 billion mistake. After that, we made a rule: No more meetings in the bathroom. ~Michael Eisner, former CEO, Disney   Recently, my book club was discussing the merits of the book “Exit West” by Mohsin Hamid, which portrays the adventures of a couple (and a world) escaping from a war-torn and …

Success: customer-centric innovation

June 1, 2018

If your business proposition is innovative, your ultimate goal has to be ‘The customer always thinks that WE are right.’ ~Richard Branson   Back in February 1997, before my editorial advent at IFAI, the Industrial Fabric Products Review cover was graced with a simple shot of a computer, in ominous dark purple and glowing green …

The Vikings, innovation and editorial coverage

March 1, 2018

Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing it is stupid. ~Albert Einstein Okay… I guess I have to report that The Curse of the Vikings is still intact (see February editorial). We upset New Orleans well enough that …