• The future of batteries?

    Watch this very interesting video where two scientists explains how they discovered by mistake what could be the future of batteries. What they invented might be a major discovery for our shared future. Greener, safer and more efficient batteries will change our everyday life from our car, to our phone and our computer, it will also accelerate the development of emerging countries.

    The Super Supercapacitor | Brian Golden Davis from Focus Forward Films on Vimeo.

  • TEDxToulouse, c’est le 16 mars !

    Ca y’est, après notre première conférence TEDxPlaceDuCapitole, nous lançons TEDxToulouse ! En fait cela fait presque un an que nous y sommes dessus avec une équipe d’une petite dizaine de bénévoles. TEDxToulouse aura donc lieu le samedi 16 mars après midi à l’espace Vanel à Toulouse. Pour ceux qui ne savent pas ce qu’est TEDx, jetez un oeil ici : http://www.ted.com/tedx

    Conférence TEDx à Toulouse le 16 mars 2013

    Nous avons réussi à réunir 12 intervenants aux profils très différents, c’est la clef pour rendre la journée passionnante (on l’espère !). Ils se préparent pour certain depuis plusieurs mois avec le soutien de notre coach, Isabelle.

    • Edith Bouvier : photo-reporter
    • Jean Philippe Bertrand: ancien membre du GIGN
    • Didier Blanqui : enseignant
    • James Carles : chorégraphe
    • Audrey Dussutour : scientifique
    • Guillaume Nery : apnéiste
    • Gaétan Séverac : ingénieur
    • Thomas Soulier : entrepreneur
    • Patricia Parry: écrivain/psychiatre
    • Ardhendu Pathak : responsable innovation
    • Eric Vanelle : directeur théâtre du Grand Rond
    • Amal Yassin : étudiante

    Pour plus d’infos, visitez le site internet : http://tedxtoulouse.com/ ou bien pour des news ultra fraîches, suivez-nous sur Twitter ou Facebook ! Les places sont en ventes à partir du 20 février midi ici.

     

  • Goodbye Kodachrome

    Enjoy the last moment of legendary Kodachrome film with this documentary from National Geographic on Steve McCurry latest project.

     

  • Best places in Toulouse

    As I am living in Toulouse, the major city in south west France, I wanted to make a collection of the places I love. So here it is, I did this on Google maps with my favorite places, shops, cafés in this beautiful small and sunny city :)


    Afficher My favorite places in Toulouse sur une carte plus grande

    Want a better view? Click here for the direct link on GoogleMaps

  • Launching my first free font

    I have been working on this one since last summer as a side project. So today, is the day to launch it, with probably its imperfection, you will tell me! Just click on the picture to go to the download page.

    Calmont is a medieval castle build on the summit of a basaltic hill overlooking the Lot Valley and the city of Espalion where I grew up. It is more than a thousand years old and I have been watching it for all my childhood.

    Calmont is a sans serif font, the first I designed. For curious, I first sketch it on paper then did the vector in Illustrator and assembled everything in Fontlab, making about 450 kerning pairs. I put a focus on readability but I launch it with its imperfection rather than not shipping at all. Comments and critics are always very welcome :)

  • We need to change education

    In this Ericsson video, you will see explained the revolution of education that has just begun. Schools forced children to fit in its bureaucratic style instead of adapting to the children’s needs.

    School and universities have trained for years batch of factory workers, but as Seth Godin said, we don’t need them anymore. We need people able to adapt to change, people inspired and passionate about solving problems of all kinds.

    Our education system needs to change now. A lot of initiatives are emerging using online tools to reverse the way we educated before. Now the children learn their lessons online and the teacher help them doing exercise and explain on a more face-to-face basis. The most famous initiative is the one launched by Salman Khan and supported by the Gates foundation https://www.khanacademy.org/ .

    Most of these enterprises are lead by american foundation, companies or universities. I would dream that Europe and France understand the urge to launch our own versions. If we don’t act now, the diversity is going to decrease. I don’t mean that this education revolution is a threat but we need to see more countries involved in this process. Unless we do this, United states will teach the world, using this as a soft power and europeans won’t be eared. Diversity is important, different point of views will lead to a more interesting future.

    We are living one of the most important revolution Internet as allowed and it is really fascinating!

  • Future by design

    I just discovered this 2006 documentary about the designer, social engineer as he called himself, Jacque Fresco. This american dude almost 94 years old today is a futurist. He has worked all his life to try do invent his version of the future. Jacque Fresco seems to be moved by humanist and environmental values, he think that the future needs to be lead by scientific rules in order to make the best choices.

    I discovered after viewing the documentary that a movement is trying to make his ideas come true: The venus project. This organization seems to be a little controversial (more). Nevertheless, even if I do not agree with him on the dominance of science above decision making in the future, this documentary is a must watch. Fresco is definitely a man with vision, some of his work aged of more than 50 years are being realized today. He has the humility to explain that his work is not prediction but his personal vision for a future using resource based economy, an efficient and environment friendly urbanisation and a more open education enabling personal fulfillment for everyone.

    It is definitely an utopist vision but what I found important in this documentary is that it could inspire us to make a little bit of future thinking. We need to develop our own vision for the future, not to do predictions, but to imagine what how our future will look like. If we do not, the limited natural ressources and the lack of self realisation of people might remind us we should have.

    I don’t believe our uncreative politicians will shape what our society will become, they are unfortunately too short term minded. Let’s try ourselves to use our imagination to begin building a sustainable future. Each little step at a time.

    We forgot about long term, read this article on Business Insider about why every corporation should employ a futurist: here

  • A short story of the GIF

    Celebrating the GIF format for its 25 years.

  • Againt obsolescence

    Planned obsolescence is a plague of our times. Designers and brands should stop themselves to use this mechanism. Our political institutions could tax every product launched on the market which sustainability had not be proven.

    Against obsolescence from Vitsœ on Vimeo.

  • The lean startup

    The lean startup is a 284 pages book written by entrepreneur Eric Ries. Its goal is to launch a movement of entrepreneurs inspired by the lean manufacturing techniques. From Ries point of view, one of the biggest modern waste is the waste of time. We are asking people to work on products/projects that doesn’t really matter to the end consumer. We are efficients at doing things that are often useless. After years of experiences in different startups and as a consultant, Ries has adapted the lean manufacturing techniques originally invented by Toyota to the management of a sustainable company. I propose in the following article to quickly resume the main topics the book is dealing with.

    The book is divided into three main parts : Vision, Steer and Accelerate.

    Part I – Vision

    Entrepreneur is a job that requires a new kind of management. Startups does not exists to make stuff or money, their goal is to learn how to build a sustainable business. This knowledge can be scientifically validated, it is called validated learning. The lean startup principles are based on the « Build-Measure-Learn » loop. The main activity of a company is to transforms ideas into products, measure how their customers respond and then choose whether to pivot or persevere. The progress of the company should be measured through a new kind of values : innovation accounting.

    For Ries, a startup is a human institution designed to create a product or service under conditions of extreme uncertainty. Startups need to create an agile platform that enable them to experiment quickly in order to learn more about the customers, its needs and how to design new features that will be useful for the user. Validated learning is the process of demonstrating that a team has discovered valuable truth about the present and future business. Every new features should be tested independantly and measured through actionable metrics to check if it should be kept or removed. This tests should be done as quicly as possible through the launch of a minimum viable product, even a rapid unfinished and cheap prototype. This means that you shouldn’t wait to have the perfect product, launch it and then discover that nobody wants it because it does not answer to the user’s needs.

    Entrepreneurs need to make two kind of assumptions : the value hypothesis tests whether a product delivers value to the consumer. The second, the growth hypothesis tests how your product will spread to the customers. You need to make experiments to validate your hypothesis in order to choose to pivot or persevere.

    Part II – Steer

    When your customer interacts with your product they generate feedback that is both qualitative and quantitative.  The feedback loop can be representated through these steps : ideas > BUILD > product > MEASURE > data > LEARN > ideas. The riskiest elements  on which everything depends are called the « leap of faith assumptions », as we saw earlier, the two main are the value and the growth hypothesis. The first step to enter in the loop in order to validate your hypothesis is to build a Minimum Viable Product (MVP). With this MVP, you will gain knowledge that allows you to tune your product according to actionable metrics. You will pay attention to the kind of metrics you are using, too many entrepreneurs base their decisions upon vanity metrics which can lead the company in a very dangerous path. You will also have to be very clear about your leap of faith assumptions, be true, be explicit, don’t try to convince your stackeholders with obscure language, be very clear about what you are trying to achieve.

    Your MVP can be everything, from a simple website, a video, a powerpoint presentation, a prototype. You need to test the faster and cheaper as you can to see how your early adopters, your audience, are responding. Quality is not what matters here. You need to test and iterate as fast as possible and build a framework that allows that speed.

    Innovation accounting is a three steps process : first, establish real data from an MVP, then tune your engine to the ideal based on your meaures and finally choose wether to pivot or persevere. Your metrics should represent the hypothesis you are testing, they should be clear and reliable.

    When you see your stastics are not improving, you are facing one of the biggest challenge an entrepreneur can have : you have to decide if you need to persevere in your hypothesis or to pivot. Pivot means to keep your original vision but to make a new fundamental hypothesis about your product, strategy and engine of growth. Some companies are making just enough money to survive but are not improving their statistics, they are in the land of the living deads, your learning milestones should help you to realize that you need to pivot before being stuck in that kind of situation. The lean statup methodology should help your organisation to be able to make pivots faster and faster if needed.

    Part III – Accelerate

    One of the most commun failures startups makes is to work with large batches of work and suddently realized they were working on something useless. One of the basic principles of an agile organisation is to work with multidisciplinary teams on small batches that will be tested very quickly.

    There are three main engines of growth. The first one is the sticky engine of growth, designed to attract and retain customers on the long term (ex : subscriptions based business…). The second one is the viral engine of growth, it depends on person-to-person transmission (ex: social networks…).  The third one is the paid engine of growth, it is based on the revenue you can make from each customer or the cost of acquiring a new customer (ex: commerce, consulting…).

    Finally, you need to build a company and a management that is able to adapt quickly to change. Your company should always keep it’s ability to innovate and quicly tests new ideas. Sometimes to understand more deeply the problems you will encounter, you can use the technique of the « Five Whys ». It consists on asking « why » five times to go deeper and see the real foundation of the problems and not the superficial aspect of it. This will enable you to make the proportionnal investment in time, ressources or finance in order to solve the issue.

    A last word on innovation, you need to secure resources for your innovation team, it will need an independant development authority and each persons involved will need a personal stake in the outcome. It can be recognition, stakes, money… but people need to keep motivated and implicated in the projects.

     

    This short resume is just a quick overview of the book. I recommand you to read it in order to go deeper into the different concepts which are really well developped by Eric Ries. I hope this article will gives you some basic knowledge about the lean startup principles. More informations can be found online here : http://theleanstartup.com/principles

    My personnal opinion on this book is that even if I didn’t like the author’s style I think it is a must read book for every persons who are thinking to launch a new business. It is a little bit too startup/product oriented and I woul have appreciated if there was more explanations on how to adapt the lean startup principles to a service based company.

    Trouver le livre sur Amazon : The Lean Startup: How Constant Innovation Creates Radically Successful Businesses