Is the Crowd a Disruption or an Opportunity for Large Companies?

Many are excited about the new collaborative economy, where people use common technologies to get what they need from each other. This has created disruptions for some industries, but overall, holds much business opportunity for progressive companies. Progressive companies can glean greater loyalty through crowdfunding, turn to the crowd for new co-innovation and launch their own sharing programmes to expand how they serve their customers new desires. Companies who ignore this trend are likely to suffer from disruption, but those that lean in can benefit from using the crowd to their advantage. In the next section, I’ll share examples of what the crowd is doing, and how large companies are responding to integrate the crowd into their strategy. Image from … Continue readingIs the Crowd a Disruption or an Opportunity for Large Companies?

A Glossary of Emerging Terms in the Collaborative Economy

Photo :”Conversation” by Steve Bridger, used with Creative Commons license.  Buzzwords, buzzwords, buzzwords! Nothing is more fun than using buzzwords – except one thing: Reading all the buzzwords on a single page. Impress your colleagues at the co-working spot, your tatted Lyft drivers, and your hot Tinder dates with your immense knowledge on the latest hipster technology terms. New terms and phrases emerge as new movements are born. The purpose of this post is to help clarify, from one single location, some of the jargon you may hear out in the industry. I plan to update it, along with your help, with submissions in the comments, to serve as a reference for our collective work. At the bottom of this post, … Continue readingA Glossary of Emerging Terms in the Collaborative Economy

The White House Embraces the Maker Movement

Large companies seek signals from market leaders on future trends –so they can align their plans in the right direction. One clear signal that rings loud and clear is the United States White House’s commitment to innovation in the Maker Movement. The Maker Movement, which we consider part of the larger Collaborative Economy, empowers people to build their own goods in their community and offering it to others in a global marketplace. They use simple wood working tools, create new types of food, or tap advanced technologies like 3D printing. Crowd Companies was honored to host the White House on a members concall to learn about their vision and commitment towards the Maker Movement. Now the Maker Movement is gaining … Continue readingThe White House Embraces the Maker Movement

Maker Movement and 3D Printing: Industry Stats

A large crowd convenes at a Maker Faire for the full scale mouse trap. This maker movement puts power in the hands of the people to fund, design, prototype, produce, manufacture, distribute, market and sell their own goods. This movement impacts global manufacturing as creation shifts geographically to local, philosophically to sustainability and legally to force the adaptation of new IP laws as people move from consuming to creating and sharing. The following material features links, sources and dates, sorted in logical orders, to help you find key data that you’ll need to make informed decisions. Additionally, I’ll link to other listings and indexes that will provide further context. One of my goals is to serve as an industry curator … Continue readingMaker Movement and 3D Printing: Industry Stats

3D-Printing Clunky, But Shows World-Changing Promise

I wanted to know how 3D printers will impact corporations, so I took a class. I find value in hands-on field research In the aim for further understanding the impact of the empowered customers to corporations, I took a class on 3D printing at my local Techshop, where regular folks can learn cutting edge skills. Previously. this spring, I visited Maker Faire where thousands of people who want to make their own products (rather than buy them from corporations) assemble to share, hone, and show off their skills.  The big winner was the large pavilion of 3D printers, which I shared my findings.   I’m also living the collaborative economy movement, I’ve reduced buying physical goods, and prefer to rent … Continue reading3D-Printing Clunky, But Shows World-Changing Promise

In the Collaborative Economy, the Crowd has Built a Car

Above Image: The orange Wikispeed SGT01 Roadster: crowd-funded, crowd-designed, crowd-produced, hitting the streets in small batches now for $25k, oh, and it gets 100 miles per gallon. What if I told you the next affordable, long range, fuel efficient vehicle might be assembled in your garage or built by your neighbors?  That’s what I was surprised to hear, when I learned about the Wikispeed auto project. Wikispeed is a business that crowd sourced designs, production, development, and has created a SAE registered, road legal approved car the Wikispeed SGT01 Car, now on sale in limited quantities. This case example is part of my ongoing coverage of the collaborative economy, on how the crowd becomes a company. I had the opportunity to meet … Continue readingIn the Collaborative Economy, the Crowd has Built a Car

The Maker Movement Disrupts Brands, Provides Opportunities

For my third year, I spent yesterday at the Maker Faire, in Silicon Valley.  Unlike any other year, the crowds were overflowing, suggesting this movement was growing faster than the cottage industry before.  To put this into context, the maker movement is yet (another) disruption to brands, here’s the lineage: [Disruptions Summarized: 1) The Internet democratized knowledge, 2) Social Media empowered crowd, 3) Collaborative Economy endows crowd to buy once, share many, 4) the Maker Movement aims at buying from brands no more. I must honestly confess, I struggle to keep abreast of all the new technologies, and I suspect corporations are experiencing the same.  It’s my full time job, I attend these events on weekends, and we’ve a company … Continue readingThe Maker Movement Disrupts Brands, Provides Opportunities