Podcasts about leds

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Sixteen:Nine
Ted Romanowitz, Futuresource Consulting

Sixteen:Nine

Play Episode Listen Later Jan 30, 2023 46:46


Ted Romanowitz has been around the commercial display and tech sectors for a whole bunch of years, and for the last two or so, has been an industry analyst for the research firm Futuresource Consulting. Futuresource is in the UK, but Ted works out of the Portland, Oregon area - spending his time looking at professional display technologies, ranging from projectors to mini and microLED video wall products. He was at CES and he'll be at ISE this week, meeting with manufacturers and walking the halls, seeing what's new and interesting. We had a good chat about where the different display technologies are at, and how miniLED is seeing a lot of traction for fine pitch LED displays. We talk projection and we spend quite a bit of time discussing the state and vast potential for microLED. One thing I particularly liked was his qualifier about "true" microLED, as all kinds of manufacturers market their premium products as microLED, when they're really miniLED. Ted, thank you for joining me. Can you explain what you do for Futuresource and what Futuresource is all about?  Ted Romanowitz: Oh, I'd love to do that. I'm a principal analyst at FutureSource Consulting in our business-to-business (b2b) practice. I lead the entire professional display Segment. So we cover everything Projection, LCD panels, tiled LCD, and interactive displays, as well as my forte, as you may know, is LED. I have more than 10 years of industry experience in LED with Planar, Leyard and Christie Digital. It's wonderful. There's a lot going on in pro displays right now.  So what would you be doing primarily? Are you producing research reports? Are you talking to companies? You know, what's your day-to-day? Ted Romanowitz: We do three really big things. One, we do quarterly trackers for all these technologies. So you can look at the data by company, by specification, by country, and comparatively by brand. We also do annual reports. We've just published a video wall report as well as a strategic market outlook. We've got a big digital signage report coming in the springtime. We're looking forward to publishing that, as well as a refresh of our true micro-LED report coming in the first half of the year. So we do a lot of annual reports, and then the third bit is custom research. So if there are any companies out there that have a specific business need for the information, they can reach out to me and we'd love to talk to them about a one-off type of project to get the analytics that they need to make an informed business.  How hard is it to get the data from all the different display manufacturers and to talk about their sales and their market size?  Ted Romanowitz: It is definitely a challenge and I think, especially during the Covid timeframe, to keep relationships established has been challenging. We just came back from a major trip to the Asia Pacific in November, so we were literally the first company meeting these large pro AV vendors in Korea, Taiwan, and Japan. We spent two weeks over there face-to-face and you just can't say enough about building face-to-face relationships and having those conversations and that's why we're so much looking forward to ISE this year, getting everybody back together.  So when you say you are the first company, what do you mean by that?  Ted Romanowitz: A lot of these vendors haven't had research companies or other people come and visit them face-to-face. So they were really glad, almost ecstatic to have us show up at their doorstep for a meeting. It was wonderful to rebuild a lot of relationships. It's so much different to do it face-to-face. It's more meaningful. As opposed to at a table in a trade show booth? Ted Romanowitz: That's also face-to-face, so I think those are good as well.  It's hard to get good data, setting yourself aside, there are one or two other companies that are focused on this, but there's this avalanche or a steady torrent of crap coming out of research factories from India. Do you have to fight against that?  Ted Romanowitz: I think what Futuresource is really good at is having these long-term relationships. We've been doing this for two decades. We have relationships with the brands. We're getting data, hard data. We're having not only quantitative discussions, but we're having qualitative trends impacting the industry, what's coming next, and those sorts of things, so it's much more robust practice that we do, and that's why people are coming to us wanting our research.  And part of your routine as well is going to the big trade shows, I believe you're just at CES and you're planning to go to ISE as well? Ted Romanowitz: Absolutely. It was my 14th trip to CES in my career, and it's like a little bit of a family reunion for me actually. But it was amazing to see the energy and people actually queuing up to be able to get into some of the booths there, the larger booths because they were controlling the traffic for Covid and everything. But the energy was there, a lot of great new technologies. It was quite exciting, and as a little preview, I know we're gonna talk about micro LEDs at some point, but I was able to see the industry's first true micro-LED displays, so that was worth the trip, just that one thing.  Yeah, I get asked every year, am I going to CES? And I say, I've done it, don't want to do it again, too many people line up for everything. But the biggest thing is it's consumer electronics and it's pushing away to some degree it seems at least from displays into gadgets and cars and everything else, so I'm curious if you said that one thing alone was worth the trip, but for somebody who is maybe not as well versed as you, is it worth going to CES if you're in the digital signage industry?  Ted Romanowitz: There were digital sign signs everywhere, even in some of the smaller halls like North and West, there were LED signs in almost every single booth promoting different technologies and companies, brands. It was amazing. But yeah, I was also amazed at how some of the big consumer brands were starting to bring in LED technology in particular, and showing the consumer applications of that and it's still not gonna be sold through a CEDIA channel, it's going to be sold through pro AV consultants. So it's our heart and soul still for some years before it becomes priced for the mass markets if you will. Do you get cues from CES about, a product that comes out for TVs whether it be OLED or QLED whatever the case may be, are those cues to what's gonna happen on the pro side or does it not necessarily track that way? Ted Romanowitz: There's not one way or the other, but I definitely think, specifically to LED technology, that is primarily a pro-AV thing and it is starting to creep into CES and that's exactly why I was at the show.  Venetian had three floors of smaller companies, and it's amazing how much of our ecosystem is starting to show up there. Different companies looking for ODM and OEM arrangements were in the Venetian, showing prototypes and whatnot of not only LED but also see-through LED and transparent OLED.  I was curious about one of the announcements at CES where LG unveiled an OLED TV that was wirelessly powered. Now there was a box that you still had to plug in, but between the box and the display panel itself, there was no wire. It was being transmitted by IR or something or other, I forgot. Is that something that you see as coming or is it just an outlier that nobody would actually use? Ted Romanowitz: LG had a wireless OLED display. But my understanding is that it was wireless connectivity on the data side and not necessarily on the power side. But that's certainly something I think it'll be interesting to see if that shows up at ISE, and definitely, a trend that we should all watch, especially in historic buildings across the east coast of America plus Europe, where you have a historical building and you wanna hang a display in this space, but you don't have power to it, and you don't want a god awful power cord, video signal cord running down the beautiful brickwork or whatnot. There could be some real applications for it.  Yeah. I know a company in Israel. I did a podcast with them and they now have wireless power technology and they insisted it's safe and everything else, and you don't get fried if you walk in front of it, or anything. Ted Romanowitz: Interesting. I'm not aware of that. I'll have to get the information from you so we can have a good look.  So what display segments are growing right now?  Ted Romanowitz: Overall, the pro display is growing over the next five years at about an 8% compound annual growth rate, which is healthy. That's really being driven primarily by direct view LED, which is, over 20% year-over-year growth. So that's really where the growth is. LCD is still showing basically flat growth over the next five years. It's very slow growth, but yet by 2026, it's still 50% of the pro displays marketplace, and we won't see that shift between LED and LCD until we have some of these advanced technologies like mini LED, as defined by flip chip COB, which I think we're gonna see some really interesting demos at ISE on this technology finally. There have been technical and manufacturing issues that have held it back from mass production. So I think 2023 will be the year, we're predicting that 2023 will be the year when companies will come into mass production and resolve these manufacturing and technical issues. So that's where you get pixel pitches under 0.7, 0.6, perhaps even 0.5 with flip chip COB that will start to challenge LCD panels, which are really that close-up viewing experience really predominant.  Yeah, I remember Leyard's CTO or he some kind of title like that, he was saying once you get to about 0.7, you're very close to the pixel pitch that you would have on an LCD.  Ted Romanowitz: That is correct. It's around 0.5-millimeter pixel pitch on an LCD screen. So yeah, LED is getting there, and then the really last bit is, once you have that close-up viewing experience, you can put it into, let's say small to medium room sized meeting rooms as well as digital signage, eye level, close up wayfinding, informational displays, those kinds of things. It gets really interesting for LED, but the price differential right now is still fairly substantial. What is it now? I understand there are a whole bunch of variables. Ted Romanowitz: That's a loaded question. I wish I could just say, oh, it's X percent but it depends. I hate that answer, but it's the truth. We're seeing these advanced technologies in LED come in the mass volume where you get economies of scale, you're gonna see that differential shrink. So that's first with this flip chip CEOB, mini LED and that gets you to around, 0.5-0.6 millimeter, certainly 0.7 so you're on the verge of competing with LCD panels and then with what we're calling true micro LED technology, that is sub-100-micron chiplets mass transferred onto a TFT backplane with an active driver technology. So that is what one of the brands was showing at CES Samsung. They had from 55-inch to about 140-inch displays. They weren't able to give me pricing on that officially, but we know they estimated it last year at about $150,000 for a 4K display over 100 inches. And that's probably not gonna go into your house or mine, although we aspire to that. But over the years as they come into mass production in the next five to seven years, it's going to drop from $150,000 down to around $4,000 is what we're estimating and volume production, once you get under, let's say 40,000 or 30,000, it'll start showing up in the CEDIA channels. So it'll start shifting from pro AV consultants to the CEDIA channel but they'll need lots of help to figure out how to do it, and then once it gets into the $4,000 to $5,000 range, it's definitely more of a broad consumer electronic, still very expensive for you and I, a lot of people will really want to jump on this technology. It looks really beautiful. The stuff that Samsung was showing at CES was that when you frame it as true micro LED, as the Samsung stuff part of the wall series and they're now doing genuine micro LED with that?  Ted Romanowitz: That's a great question, but they had the wall separately. These were consumer television sets that are true micro0LED, but they weren't ready yet to do an announcement in the pro AV space but one could reasonably assume that might be coming, that they'll offer this true micro-LED display, and whether they brand it ‘The wall' or whatever else they're gonna call it, that's up in the air.  But it looks fantastic. It'll start to impede LCD panels in a significant way, and then shift the industry towards that where right now, LED is already in video walls the predominant technology that has the highest value. Within five years, it'll be three times the value of a tiled LCD. So LED  is taking over the video wall. We see in the broader pro AV space, not in the next five years, but certainly, within the next 10 years, LED will be the number one display technology.  Yeah, I think there's always going to be a demand for LCD for some kind of meat and potatoes digital signage, like menu boards and ticketing information, all that sort of stuff, but you get into any kind of specialty application or something where shape needs to be flexible, they're gonna go to mini or micro-LED once the price is there.   Ted Romanowitz: Yes, true micro-LED eventually will also challenge LCD panels in that more, I guess what you would call hang and bang, on the commodity side. I believe that it'll bring LCD prices down. There'll always be a place for LCD technology but LED will start to take over where image quality, where impact is really important and there's just a smaller uplift in pricing for that better experience where people and customers want that big impact, it's going to be LED.  I was at Touch Taiwan about four years ago, pre-Covid, and I left that trade show with a distinct impression from manufacturers that they saw mini-LED as kind of an interim technology, and it was mostly gonna be used for LCD backlighting like addressable zones, local dimming that, all that stuff. But it seems like mini-LED is getting a lot of take-up as a direct-view LED product as well.  Ted Romanowitz: Absolutely, and LG has a version of their consumer LED product showcased at CES. It was about a 150-inch display and had some really good features. I think it was 1.2 millimeters with beautiful image quality but it's $300,000. It's still the consumer market that is very expensive for them to get into. But, then again, personally, as a product manager for LED, I've worked in multiple companies where we have done high-end homes with LEDand, putting up a $750,000 wall in a Bel Air home wasn't a problem They have the budget. That's again, not my house as much as I would like that.  Yeah, as much as I'd like to be a midfielder for Manchester United, I'm too small and way too old, I don't think I'm gonna have that kind of salary.   Ted Romanowitz: I think you and me both, but we can still hope, can't we? It's not too late.  Oh, I think it is for me at least. Ted Romanowitz: I think another important thing is with projection, you were talking about where the pro AV industry is going and all of that, projection both front and rear are in relatively steep decline, and some people would say, oh my gosh, that's super scary, there are so many projection companies out there, and we see so many demos at ISE and at CES, there are a lot of consumer protection companies displaying products. Even though projection is in decline, double-digit decline over the next five years, in the end, it's still a $4 to $5 billion market, it's massive, and so it's not like projection is gonna go away, it's just getting a little bit smaller.  So I think there's some hope there and we're seeing high brightness being a big thing over the last year. Already we've heard whispers from several of the projection brands that they're gonna be unveiling new high-brightness projectors. A lot of demos on projection mapping, blending, warping, and those sorts of things to support immersive, really engaging interactive displays.  Yeah, in the right physical environment and lighting conditions and everything else, projection is awesome because it's got that ability to surprise you. It just shows up and forms around things in a way you can't do with more conventional displays. Ted Romanowitz: Exactly, and if you need to have a large display of information or whatnot, there's no more cost-effective way to do that, to show a big image, let's say in a theater or something other than projection, right? LED is just far too expensive to do that, although some brands are in customer-facing theaters. Some very large technology brands are putting in LED displays to impact their ecosystem, and their end customers in a very impactful way, but still, projection is wonderful. It has legs to continue for decades but LED is the up-and-coming thing.  Why is projection getting better, like they're able to do brighter, is it because of laser, or are there other factors? Ted Romanowitz:  Yeah, it's the laser technology that they're implementing. I think smaller form factors, are quieter, as well as the prices are coming down as well. Those are all factors that are gonna give it legs for quite some time. One other thing too, I think there are so many immersive exhibits that are happening now, right? In Portland, Oregon, we get one every month or two where they're using projection and or a blend of projection in LED to provide a really amazing sensory exhibit. And when our team was in Japan, we went and saw the Team Labs exhibit there and it was wonderful that you actually took your shoes off, and put them in a locker. You roll up your pant legs and you're about knee-deep in warm water and, it was really cool, the projection map Koi onto the water that you're walking through, and the fish react to you. So you can reach out or, as you approach one of the fish, it'll look over at you and then scurry off as if it was a real fish. It was just an amazing experience to go do that.  I'm curious as well about OLED and light field displays and I recognize that light field displays are still probably a few years off, but are you seeing advances in that?  Ted Romanowitz: That's one of the things that we're going to be doing some further research on at ISE and it'll be interesting to see how that trend emerges, and OLED is really interesting. On the transparent side, a lot of companies have been working on that to help with merchandising or promoting products, putting them in an OLED box and putting marketing messages around the product even while you're able to reach in and touch the product.  Those are some super creative things, but at the LG booth at CES and a couple of others, they're showing transparent OLED and transparent LED applications where you can get a 10-foot high glass wall and cover it with an image. It's just cool. It's beautiful. It'll be interesting to see how corporations and other organizations invest in that, and what the adoption rate will be, and that's definitely an area where we're going to be researching further.  Yeah, the LED on film and LED embedded in glass particularly when micro-LED matures, that seems exciting as hell in terms of the amount of brightness you can get and the fact that you can just make it part of the building material. Ted Romanowitz: Exactly, yes, and you look at all these big cities. I don't know when you were in China last, but you go to Hong Kong and you're sitting on the Calhoun side at night and the choreographer does some choreography with music and a light show of all the major tall office buildings on Central. It's just amazing. And Shenzhen, Shanghai, a lot of cities in China are doing these light shows and lighting up all the buildings and in America, we're starting to see that as well. Obviously, Las Vegas is a great example, but I think it'll be interesting to see how that evolves, not only in America but also in Europe with all of the historical buildings, what the regulations will be and you know how they'll allow technology to be used architecturally and artistically on some of these historic buildings, or if we'll just keep doing projection onto them. Which you can do without affecting the building, which I'm sure makes the people who protect buildings happy.  Ted Romanowitz: Absolutely.  You're going to ISE, I assume. For somebody who's going and they're particularly interested in seeing what's new and what's emerging and what's important to know on the display side of things, what would you recommend? What should they be looking for? Ted Romanowitz: I definitely think the big trends will be the flip chip COB, and mini-LED. I don't know if a true micro-LED display will be shown, but they're certainly, if not from one of the big brands, I would expect some of the manufacturers like BOE or Seoul Semi might be showing some things in their booth, so that's one thing to look for. I think projection is gonna be sexy. People are gonna be doing projection mapping and blending and warping and all of that. 8K displays, I think you'll see more and more of those out there. Yeah, those are some of the big things. There's the digital signage section as well. We're gonna be spending a lot of time out there.  As I mentioned, we are doing a digital signage report in the next few months. So we will be looking at that as well.  Would that be a display report or software?  Ted Romanowitz: It'll be both. It'll be the whole ecosystem.  This is great because it's so hard to get any credible research on the software side of this business.  Ted Romanowitz: Exactly, and It'll be hardware and not only just the displays itself but the media servers, players, the content in the cloud. All of the above. It's gonna be a really exciting report. We're very much looking forward to that one.  Good. All right. Ted, thank you so much for spending some time with me.  Ted Romanowitz: Thank you so much and I look forward to seeing you in Barcelona.  Absolutely. Tapas! Ted Romanowitz: Exactly. See you there!

That’s Brilliant!
LED Fixtures: Integrated or Socketed Light Source?

That’s Brilliant!

Play Episode Listen Later Jan 23, 2023 28:37


Do you want to use an led light bulb, or use a fixture with the LEDs built in? Raelle and Liz discuss the topic with Chris Primous, who wrote a paper on the subject.   Show notes With over 24 years in product development, sales, and consulting with companies such as Acuity, Progress Lighting, MaxLite, and EPA/ENERGY STAR, Chris Primous has well-rounded industry experience. A 2018 ALA Pillar of the Industry award winner, Primous is the current VP of Business Development and Sales at LiteTrace where he provides software and sensors to manufacturers and building owners for smart commercial lighting controls. To read the industry version of Chris's whitepaper on this subject: https://alamembers.com/Portals/1/Socketed%20vs%20Integrated%20LED%20Guidance%20ALA_1.pdf A consumer version will come out soon. Go to the ALA Conference!  Visit ALAMembers.com for more information about the American Lighting Association and membership. ALALighting.com has lighting tips and inspiration, and a listing of ALA-member showrooms.  Raelle Bell – Host Liz Ware – Host Association Briefings - Producer

Today in Lighting
Today in Lighting, 6 JAN 2023

Today in Lighting

Play Episode Listen Later Jan 6, 2023 1:47


Highlights today include: SGH First Quarter Sales Analysis, Sonepar Makes Acquisitions, L-Prize Deadlines Approaching on January 13, The Value of Working with a Lighting Rep – They Have Your Back, Porsche chips to use 16,000 LEDs to turn night into day, Regional Sales Manager – Southeastern United States – Electric Mirror.

Embedded
439: Ditches and Psychology

Embedded

Play Episode Listen Later Jan 6, 2023 47:19


Chris and Elecia talk about house maintenance, blinking LEDs, paper engineering and more.  Cutting Mobius Strips Video: Tadashi Tokieda cuts various combinations of loops and Mobius loops - with surprising results. festi.info/boxes.py generates boxes for laser cutting (or other SVG consuming device). Boxes.py is a python module that lets you programmatically generate the SVGs. (Github repo) Amanda Ghassaei's Sugarcube is a MIDI instrument using this SparkFun button pad. We also talked about the Mikroe 8800 Retro Click. Elecia is taking Paper Engineering with Kelli Anderson. Chris is taking songwriting courses from School of Song. Transcript

Grand Master Level Podcast
GRAND MASTER LEVEL PACKING 660NM, OPEN MIC

Grand Master Level Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Jan 3, 2023 126:45


Interested in LEDS ? USA https://grandmasterleds.com/CANADA  https://grandmasterleds.ca/To Watch live register at https://gmlshow.com/

Grand Master Level Podcast
GRAND MASTER LEVEL SHARKMOUSEFARMS FLOW3RFOX2.0

Grand Master Level Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Jan 3, 2023 118:26


Interested in LEDS ? USA https://grandmasterleds.com/CANADA  https://grandmasterleds.ca/To Watch live register at https://gmlshow.com/

Grand Master Level Podcast
GRAND MASTER LEVEL CHRISTMAS TIME

Grand Master Level Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Jan 3, 2023 83:11


Interested in LEDS ? USA https://grandmasterleds.com/CANADA  https://grandmasterleds.ca/To Watch live register at https://gmlshow.com/

AVNation Daily Download
Daily Download Monday January 2, 2023

AVNation Daily Download

Play Episode Listen Later Jan 2, 2023 3:47


AVWeek 570: Tim Albright is joined by Bren Walker, Chaz Porter and Erica Carroll talking about transparent LEDs. Bren Walker starts off talking about the potential applications for transparent LED screens within the workplace.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Adafruit Industries
NewProds 12/29/22 feat. Adafruit MOSFET Driver- For Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc- STEMMA JST PH 2mm!

Adafruit Industries

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 30, 2022 13:25


Snap Action 3-to-9 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-93 (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5614?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 2-to-6 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-62 (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5615?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 1-to-5 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-15 (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5616?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 5-to-5 Wiring Block Connector - Gray PCT-2-5 (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5617?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 3-to-3 Wiring Block Connector - Clear PCT-2-3M (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5618?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 1-to-1 Wiring Block Connector - Pack of 5 - Clear PCT-2-1M (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5619?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action Connector Buckle - Pack of 2 - Orange DF-24 (3:40) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5620?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts FeatherS2 Neo - Blingy RGB ESP32-S2 Feather Development Board - Unexpected Maker (7:54) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5629?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Adafruit MOSFET Driver - For Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc - STEMMA JST PH 2mm (9:08) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5648?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts ----------------------------------------- New nEw NEWs New Products, News, and more: https://www.adafruit.com/newsletter #newnewnew Shop for all of the newest Adafruit products: http://adafru.it/new Visit the Adafruit shop online - http://www.adafruit.com Adafruit on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adafruit LIVE CHAT IS HERE! http://adafru.it/discord Subscribe to Adafruit on YouTube: http://adafru.it/subscribe New tutorials on the Adafruit Learning System: http://learn.adafruit.com/ -----------------------------------------

New Products
NewProds 12/29/22 feat. Adafruit MOSFET Driver- For Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc- STEMMA JST PH 2mm!

New Products

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 30, 2022 13:25


Snap Action 3-to-9 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-93 (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5614?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 2-to-6 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-62 (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5615?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 1-to-5 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-15 (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5616?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 5-to-5 Wiring Block Connector - Gray PCT-2-5 (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5617?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 3-to-3 Wiring Block Connector - Clear PCT-2-3M (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5618?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 1-to-1 Wiring Block Connector - Pack of 5 - Clear PCT-2-1M (2:36) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5619?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action Connector Buckle - Pack of 2 - Orange DF-24 (3:40) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5620?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts FeatherS2 Neo - Blingy RGB ESP32-S2 Feather Development Board - Unexpected Maker (7:54) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5629?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Adafruit MOSFET Driver - For Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc - STEMMA JST PH 2mm (9:08) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5648?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts ----------------------------------------- New nEw NEWs New Products, News, and more: https://www.adafruit.com/newsletter #newnewnew Shop for all of the newest Adafruit products: http://adafru.it/new Visit the Adafruit shop online - http://www.adafruit.com Adafruit on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adafruit LIVE CHAT IS HERE! http://adafru.it/discord Subscribe to Adafruit on YouTube: http://adafru.it/subscribe New tutorials on the Adafruit Learning System: http://learn.adafruit.com/ -----------------------------------------

Voices of VR Podcast – Designing for Virtual Reality
#1165: XR Installation “Ikhet (Sound Pyramid)” Combines Immersive Sound, Visceral Haptics, & Diffracted Kaleidoscopic Visuals

Voices of VR Podcast – Designing for Virtual Reality

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 22, 2022 27:58


Ikhet (Sound Pyramid) is a 14-channel spatial audio installation that included ButtKicker Haptics, LED tubes with diffractive glasses giving a ghostly, analog Holographic effect, experimental field recordings, and a harsh electronic music track that reflected the artist Ali Santana's strained emotions throughout the pandemic. I had a chance to chat with Santana to unpack his journey and process in creating this piece. Here's his description of his immersive installation, which details more of the technology and emotional intention for the piece: This installation inspired by the ‘Glorious Light' integrates a multi-channel sound collage with audio-reactive LEDs to create an experience that engages viewers via light, spatial sound, and haptic feedback (vibration). The dynamic lighting which changes color and pattern in sync with the experimental sound piece, immerses the audience in a multi-sensory experience that they will see, hear and feel. Field recordings made between 2019 and 2022 along with experimentations in analog audio synthesis and hardware samplers were combined to create textures, noise, beats, and tones that reflect the artist's personal feelings of resilience, anxiety, grief, and frustration, during a period of unprecedented change. Ali Santana's description of Ikhet (Sound Pyramid)

Spacemusic Season 14 (free)
Sessions 011 | Deep Xmas Zone

Spacemusic Season 14 (free)

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 17, 2022 44:46


December 2022 … The final Sessions this year brings a deep listening episode. The perfect soundtrack to escape, focus and relax. Soundscapes & Music in a nonstop formula that goes so very well with LEDs and Spirits! Merry Xmas ! Music in this edition comes from: Pangaea Projekt - Winter Vol. V+VIScience of Sleeping / Spacecraft - Moons of JupiterLorenzo Montanà - Decorar SilenzioIgneous Flame - Ki ———> NEW SHOW NOTES VERSION———> PLEASE SEND ANY FEEDBACK IF YOU WANT———> admin@ambient.zone———> visit our site www.ambient.zone———> SUPPORT THIS STATION https://paypal.me/ambientzone © 2022 Ambient.Zone

Spark from CBC Radio
562: The Butterfly Effect, Part 4 - The LED

Spark from CBC Radio

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 16, 2022 54:00


LEDs, or light-emitting diodes, were first conceived well over a century ago. But it took another half century before they were commercially available, and half a century again before they became ubiquitous. And now they're in everything from our phones to our holiday lights to special effects in film. On a special Butterfly Effect edition, we trace the development of the LED – and ask what might come next. With guests Carrie Meadows, Zheng-Hong Lu and Kevin McGeagh.

Financial Investing Radio
FIR 158: Using AI In Your Product Delivery To Leap Ahead !!

Financial Investing Radio

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 15, 2022 31:53


In this episode, I talk with the CEO and founder of an organization that has been applying AI to help them develop products. Will AI help you develop your products faster? Come and see. Grant Hey, everybody, welcome to another episode of ClickAI Radio. So today I have this opportunity to speak with one of those brains out there in the market that's being disruptive, right? They're making changes in the industry in terms of not only the problems are solving, but it's the way in which they're solving the problems using AI very fascinating. Anyway, everyone, please welcome Paul Ortchanian here to the show. Paul Hi, nice. Nice, nice of you, happy to be here on the show.  Grant Absolutely. It's very good to have you here today. When I was first introduced to you. And I started to review your material what it is that your organization has put together as fascinated with the approach because I have a product development background and in in the software world. AI was late comer to that right meaning over generations when I saw the approach that you're taking to that I'm interested to dig more into that. But before we do that big reveal, could you maybe step back and talk about the beginning your journey? What got you on this route? And this map, both in terms of product development, and technology and AI itself? Paul Yeah, absolutely. So I started out as an engineer, headed down to San Francisco in the early 2000s. And, and I was more of a thinker than an actual engineer, or just be the type of guy who would figure things out by themselves. But if you were to ask me to really do things that the real things engineers do, you know, creativity was there, but not the solutioning. So being in San Francisco was a humbling experience, I guess, Silicon Valley, you get to see some really, really good engineers. So I had to make a shift in my career. And since I had a passion for user experience, the business aspect, product management was a great fit a function I didn't really understand. And I got to learn and respect, and did that for about 10 years.  In the mid 2000s, and 10s, I basically moved back to Montreal for family reasons and cost of living, of course in San Francisco. And I started a company called Bank Biddick, which in French stands for public bath. And the idea is that most what I realized in Canada was that people here in accelerators, incubators and, and startups just didn't understand what product management was. So they didn't really understand what they do and how they do it. And I saw a lot of organizations being led by the marketing teams, or the sales team and being very service oriented and not really product LED.  So basically, it basically stands for public bath, which means every quarter, you want to basically apply some hygiene to your roadmap, you have a galaxy of ideas, why not go out there and just, you know, take the good ones and remove the old ones and get rid of the dirt. And we started with that premise. And we put we said, well, what does a product manager do on a on a quarterly basis? Because a lot of the material you'll read out there really talks about, you know what product managers should do in terms of personas and understanding the customer's data and this and that, but nobody really tells you which order you should do it. Right. If that was my initial struggle as a product manager, do you try to do it all in the same day and then you realize that there's not enough time? So the question is like in a one quarter 12 week cycle, as my first three weeks should be about understanding the market shifts the industry, the product competitors and and the users and then maybe in the next three weeks working with leadership on making sure that there is no pivots in the organization or there are some some major strategic changes and then going into analyzing the DIS parking lot of ideas and figuring out which ones are short term and re and making business cases in order to present them for, for the company to make a decision on What to do next on the roadmap.  So there is a process and we just call that process SOAP, which goes in line with our public bath theme. So the idea was like, let's let's give product managers SOAP to basically wash their roadmap on a quarterly basis. And, and that's what being public does. And we work with over 40 organizations today so far, on really implementing this product LEDs process within their organizations, we work with their leaders on identifying a product manager within the organization and making sure that marketing support sales, the CFO CEO really understand how to engage with them what to expect from them, and how product manager can add value to to the organization. And so they just doesn't become, you know, this grace towards them as many features as you can pump out, right. Grant Oh, boy, yeah. Which, which is constant problem. The other thing that I've noticed, and I'm wondering if, and I'm sure that your SOAP methodology addresses this, it's the problem of shifting an organization in terams of their funding model, right? They'll come from sort of these project centric or service centric funding styles, and then you've got to help them through that shift to a different funding model round products. You guys address that as well. Paul Yeah, we address that a lot. One of the things we always tell them is if you are a service professional services firm, and you know, I have no issues basically calling them that. If and I asked them like do you quantify staff utilization in percentages, like 70% of our engineers are being billed? Right? Do we basically look at the sales team? How many new deals do they have in terms of pipeline? Are we looking at on time delivery across those, so double use that to serve the sales team closed? And what is our time and technical staff attrition, that usually tends to be identifiers of you being a service firm? And we often ask them, well, let's let's make the shift, when we identify one little initiative that you have that you want to productize because they all these service firms, really all they want is recurring revenue, then the service is tough, right?  That you constantly have to bring in new clients. So this recurring revenue, the path to recurring revenue is, you know, being able to say, Okay, I'm going to take two engineers, one sales person, one marketing person, one support person, and a product manager. And those guys collectively will cost me a million dollars a year, and I'm going to expect them to basically bring me $3 million in recurring revenue. That means that they're, they're no longer going to be evaluated on staff utilization, they're no longer going to be evaluating the number of deals they're bringing in. And they're, they're really going to be evaluated on how are they releasing features? Are they creating value for those features? are we increasing the number of paid customers? And are we basically, you know, staying abreast in terms of competitors and market industry changes.  And so that's a complete paradigm shift. And that transition takes a while. But the first seed is really being able to say, can you create an entity within your organization where the CFO accepts that those engineers are dedicated and no longer being, you know, reviewed in terms of their utilization rate in terms of their know how much they're billing to customers? Once they do that shift in the recipe is pretty easy to do. Grant Yeah. So it's become easy. So the thing to I've seen and experienced with, with product and product development is the relationship of innovation to product development. And so I see some groups will take innovation, and they'll move that as some separate activity or function in the organization, whereas others will have that innate within the product team itself. What have you found effective? And does self addressed that? Paul Yeah, I mean, we always ask them the question of what how are you going to defend yourself against the competition with the VCs that have to call their moat, right? And that defensibility could be innovation, it could also be your global footprint, or, you know, it could be how you operationalize your supply chain make things really, really cheap, right? Every company can have a different strategy. And we really ask them from the get go. We call this playing the strategy, we'll give them like eight potential ways a company can, you know, find strategies to differentiate themselves? And the first one is first the market?  And the question is, it's not about you being first to market today. But do you want to outpace your curlier closest rivals on a regular basis? And if so, you know, you need an r&d team and innovation team who is basically going to be pumping out commercializable features or r&d work. And then we always give him the two examples, the example of Dolby Dolby being completely analog in the 70s, but really banking on their r&d team to bring him to the digital age and from the digital age to set top boxes to Hollywood and now into Netflix compression, right?  So they basically put their R&D team as the leader to basically keep them a step ahead of their competition. But it but on the other hand, we also Welcome, you know, talk about Tesla, where Tesla is basically doing the same thing, but they're not doing it for intellectual property like Dolby, they're not suing anybody are actually open sourcing it. But there's a reason behind it where that open sourcing allows them to basically create the, you know, what we call the Betamax VHS issue, which is making sure that there's compatibility across car manufacturers for Tesla parts and overproduction of parts that are Tesla just to increase their supply chain, right? So we ask them, Do you want to be that company, if you don't want to be that company, then there's other ways for you to basically create defensibility, it could be regulatory compliance, if your industry requires it, you can go global, you can go cross industry, you can basically create customer logins, how just how SAP and Salesforce love to basically just integrate workflows with like boots on the ground, professional services certified teams, right?  And or you can basically review your process and make sure just like Amazon, that you're creating robots to do human work in order to just basically do it cheaper than anybody else. So there's ways of doing it. And I would say that if you were in AI space, especially, you know, it's important to make sure that, you know, are you really trying to innovate through AI, because you can get a lot of researchers doing a lot of things, but that's not really going to help you create commercializable ideas. So from the get go, the leadership team needs to, you know, at least make a hedge a bet on, you know, expansion, innovation, or creating efficiencies and just, you know, decide and let the product management team know in which direction they're gonna go planning on going for the next six years. Please. Grant I love your last comment there, Paul about about getting the leadership team involved. It seems that many times in organizations, this challenge of making the change sticky, right, making it last making it resonate, where people truly change their operating model, right, they're going to start operating in a different way, their roles and responsibilities change, what is the order in which things get done all of those change, when they start moving both into this AI space, but you know, product driven just by itself, even without AI has its own set of challenges? So here's the question I have for you. As you move companies through this transformation, that's part of your business, right? You are transforming the way companies operate and bring about better outcomes. How do you make those changes sticky? Because this is a cultural change? What is it you guys have found it's effective? Paul Or it goes back to our name public bath and SOAP, right? Because the idea is, you take a bath on a regular basis hygiene is something you do regularly, right? So we ask these organization, if we give you a process where you know exactly what the product management team is going to do with you with the leadership team in order to prioritize your next upcoming features, then can you do it in a cyclical way, every quarter, you need the product manager do the exact same process of revisiting the competitors, the industry, the market, as well as like the problems that you have with your premature customers, bringing it back to the organization, asking if the strategy is still about expansion, innovation, efficiencies, identifying new ideas, clearing up the parking lot of bad ideas, etc, and eventually making the business case for the new features in order for them to make a commitment. So if we do this in a cyclical way, then the product role becomes the role of what I'd like to call the CRO, which is the chief repeating officer, because all the product manager is doing is repeating that strategy and questioning the CEO, are we still on? Are we pivoting or if we pivot?  What does that mean? And if you're doing it on a three month basis, what that allows your company to do is to make sure that the marketing and sales and support team are going along with what the engineering team is going to be delivering. So this is what I usually see most product organization where a decision has been made that the engineers are going to be building a particular feature, the sales and marketing team just waits for the engineers to be Code Complete. And once a code completes, done, they're like, Okay, now we're gonna promote it. But my question is that it's too late. Right? You really need so I always show the talk about Apple, how Apple would basically go out in front of millions of people and just say, here's the new iPhone 13. And we came up with a new version of Safari, and we're updating our iOS and we're doing a 40 Other changes. And the next thing you want considered an Apple store and you know, everything has changed. The marketing has changed the guys that the doing the conferences, and the lectures and the training are all talking about the new supplier, the new iPhone, and you ask yourself, How did how did Apple know and to organize the marketing support and sales team in that in such a way that the day that the announcement has been done? Everything is changed. So that means that it's not just the engineering team's responsibility to get to Code Complete.  It is a collective responsibility where marketing support and sales are also preparing for the upcoming releases. And and the only way you can get that type of alignment is If every three months these these parties, technology, product, CEO, CFO, sales, marketing and support can get together and make a clear decision on what they're going to do, and be honest enough of what they're not going to do, and then work collectively together on making sure that that those are being delivered and prepared in terms of the size of the promotion that we're going to do, and how are we going to outreach how's the sales collateral going to change? How is the support team going to support these upcoming features. And so everybody has work to do in that three months timeframes. So and then that if we can get to that cyclical elements, I think most companies can create momentum. And once that momentum has is generating small increments of value to the customers, then you base start start building, what I like to call reputational capital, with the clients, with the customers with the prospects. And eventually anything you release the love, and everything you release adds value. And eventually everybody loves everything you're doing as an organization become that, you know, big unicorn that people want to be. Grant Yeah, so the net of that is, I believe what you said as you operationalize it. Now there's it gets integrated into everyone's role and responsibility. It's this enterprise level cross functional alignment that gets on a campus. And the cadence is, in your case, you'd mentioned quarterly, quarterly sounds like that's been a real real gem for you. I've seen some organizations do that in shorter timeframes and some much longer. It sounds like yeah, at least quarterly is that a good nugget that you find there?  Paul Yeah, quarterly works, because you know, markets are set in a quarter way they operate in that way the you want results on a quarterly basis in terms of sales in terms of engagement, etc. But what's important is that which you know, a lot of engineering teams like to work agile or Kanban. And in a quarter in a 12 week timeframe, you could fit, I'd say, Let's see your Sprint's are three weeks, you could fit for sprint for three weeks variance, or you could fit six 2-week sprints. But I feel that if you were to shorten it, then the marketing team and sales teams supporting might not have enough time to prepare themselves for Code Complete, the engineers might be able to deliver but then the product manager gets overwhelmed because doing an industry research, competitor research etc. Every, say month and a half or two months just becomes overwhelming for them. Because things don't change enough in two months for them to be able to say, Oh, look, this competitor just came up with that. And now we need so so I think three months is enough time for the world to change for, you know, country to go to war for COVID to come over and just destroy everything. So pivot decisions are usually can pretty good to do on a on a quarterly basis.  Grant Yeah, that's good. That's, I think COVID follow that rule. Right. Hey, I have a question for you around AI. So how are you leveraging AI in the midst of all this? Can you talk about that? Paul Yeah, absolutely. So what we noticed is a lot of organizations who have products, so SaaS products, or any type of product, IoT products, etc, they're generating data. I mean, it's it comes hand in hand with software development. So all that data is going into these databases are and nobody knows what to do with them. And eventually, you know, they want to start creating business intelligence, and from business intelligence, AI initiatives have just come about, it's very normal to say, You know what, with all this data, if we were to train a machine learning module, we would be able to recommend the best flight price or the best time for somebody to buy a flight, because we have enough data to do it. So so we're not working with AI first organizations who are here we have, our entire product is going to be around AI, we're just trying to work with organizations that have enough data to warrant 1-2-3, or four AI initiatives and an ongoing investment into those. So the best example I like to talk about is the Google Gmail suggestive, replies, right, which is adding value to the user needs AI in the back, end a lot of data.  But ultimately, it's not that Gmail isn't AI product, it simply has AI features in it. So and when organizations start identifying AI or machine learning, predictive elements to their product, then we go from engineering being a deterministic function, which is if we were to deliver this feature, then customers will be able to do that to a probabilistic function where Let's experiment and see what the data can give us. And if this algorithm ends up really nailing it, we will achieve this result. But if it doesn't, then do we release it? Do we not release it?  What's the and then it gets a little bit hairy because product managers just lose themselves into it. Oftentimes, they'll release a feature and the sales team would just ask them to pull it out right away because it has not met the expectations of a customer or two. And ultimately, like what we ask product managers to do is work with leadership on really it Identifying a few key elements that are very, very important to just just baseline before you were to begin an AI project. And those are pretty simple. It's, it's really like, are you trying to create to have the machine learning module? Make a prediction? Are you or are you trying for it to make a prediction plus pass judgment? Are you trying to make it a prediction, a judgment and take action? Right? Decision automation, which is what you know, self driving cars do, will will see biker, they will make a prediction that it's a biker will make a judgment that it's indeed a biker, and we'll take action to avoid the biker, right?  But when you when you're creating ml projects, you can easily say, you know, we're just going to keep it to prediction, right? Like this machine is going to predict something and then a human will make judgment and the human will take action. There's nothing wrong in doing that. So just setting the expectations for from the get go in terms of are we basically going to predict judge or take action? That's number one. And then the next question is whatever that we decide if it's just prediction, is that worth guessing? And who doesn't have guessed today, if it's a human? Is that how accurate is that human? Let's quantify. So this way we can compare it against what this machine is going to do? What is the value the company gets out of that gas being the right gas? And what's the cost of getting it wrong? So oftentimes, we forget that humans to get it wrong to and if humans get it wrong, there are huge consequences to organizations that will overlook but as soon as machine learning does the same thing, we're ready to just cancel hundreds of $1,000 of investment.  Grant Yeah, that's right. Yeah, we tossed it out. So the use case, I'm assuming would be you would leverage AI to say enhance a product managers abilities to either predict outcomes of some product development activities, or releases or things like that, would that be a kind of use case where he looked apply? Paul Well, not a product managers, I would say the product manager, we'd look at it software, let's take the software of a website that tries to predict your if people qualify for a mortgage loan, for example, right? So you have enough data at that point to be able to automate, what's the underwriting process that humans do of validating whether or not somebody's eligible for loan? Well, we could take all that data and just make a prediction of that person's fit for a particular loan. Now, if we were to say, well, it's just going to be the prediction, but we're not going to give this person the loan, we're still going to ask a human being to pass judgment that that prediction was the correct one, and then take action to give or not give him a loan.  So let's say that's the machine learning module, we're going to add to our to our feature. Now, the question is how this underwriting department in the past 10 years, how often did they really screw up that, you know, and issued loans to people that were that couldn't pay their loan, right? And realize it's 40%? Were like, Wow, 40%? Could this machine learning be as accurate as damn plus one, right? And, and then we ended up realizing that yeah, this, whatever we delivered is 33% accurate, and not 40% plus one accurate now is it still worth putting out there we spent $100,000 into it, and then you know, then it's up to the product manager to basically be able to put this thing in place and say, but look, you know, underwriting is a nine to five job currently in our business, and it cost us this much money.  On the other hand, if there's this machine learning is 33% accurate, but it's actually doing it 24/7 365 days a year, and it's only going to improve from 33 to 40. And if it goes above 40, then we the savings for our organization are this much money. So it is really the product managers job to be able to not only talking about the business KPIs, but also the what the AI machine learning KPIs we need to achieve and what the impact of that would be if we get it right. And I think that the biggest issue we have as product managers in the AI space is if we were to go and do this all there everything that we need to create AI, like the day data ops, selecting the data, sourcing it, synthesizing it, cleaning it, etc. The model ops, which, you know, comes down to multiple algorithms, training those algorithms, evaluating tuning them, and then the operationalization. If you do all these steps, and you get to 80 to 20% accuracy, and your target is at 70% accuracy, right? What do you do with it?  Because you had to do all this work anyways, it cost you tons of money and time. And so how do we get the leadership team to say this AI initiative has enough value for us that we're willing to live with the consequences of it getting it wrong, or we're willing to actually have it supported by human for the next six months to a year until we basically trains itself and gets better? So it's how do you get this openness from from from a leadership team? Because what I've often find delivering AI projects is every time you deliver an AI project, and it's misunderstood in terms of its output, and everybody thinks it has to be 100% accurate, the second and goes wrong. It's the political drama that you have to go through in order to keep it alive. is just it's just overwhelming, right? So miners will set those expectations up front and tool, the product managers with the right arguments to make sure that they the expectations are set correctly. Grant Have you ever worked with or heard of the company called digital.ai? Are your familiar with them? digital.ai, maybe not. Anyway, they have been working in a similar space as you but not so much of the product management level. What they're doing, though, is they're, they're looking to apply AI to the whole delivery function. So so you can you see, the product manager is above this, and is making sort of these KPIs and other estimate activities and the planning out. But then there are all these functions under there that of course, do the delivery of the product. And so they're working on the tooling spectrum, I think they acquired I think, was five different companies like in the last nine months, that they're integrating these and then building this AI seam or layer across that data across delivery with that purpose and intent to do that predictive not not only backwards analysis activities around AI, but predictive, which is what's the probabilities, I might run into the problem, or some problem with this particular release, right, of this product, right, that we're about to send out, now might be an interesting group for you to get connected with. Paul Yeah, I know, it's funny, because we're there. There's a local company here in Montreal that does the same thing. It's really about like data scientists are really expensive, and they're really hard to find, and there's a shortage of them. So, you know, the lot of organizations are trying to find like a self serve AI solution where you can build your AI using their AI. But ultimately, what they're doing is taking your data and delivering 123 or 10 versions of the machine learning module, it's up to you basically, judge which one is going to work the best for you, but they actually operationalize it, put it out there for you, and really automate the whole thing. So this way, you're not dependent on humans, I love that I really love that I think your organization should have one of those. But that still means that there's a dependency from the for the product manager to know that it's, it's data, like end to end, be able to clean it be able to tag it and then feed it to the to these machines, right? And I think that part is also misunderstood. Because Do we have enough data? Is there bias in the data and all that needs to be understood and figure it out? Because, you know, you could say like, Hey, we put it to this big machine. And we ended up with a 20% accuracy on the best ml that it out, put it, but that's still not good enough? Because we're trying, we're aiming for 87? And what does it mean? What do we need to do to basically get it to 87? We're gonna have to review the data bringing some third party data, you know, and it's, and that's, that costs a lot as well. So, yeah, Grant Do you think AutoML solutions play a role here like, Aible, I don't know if you're familiar with that platform, you know, that the goal is to try to reduce the amount of dependency that's needed on the data science. Scientists themselves, right. And but it's, it's still doesn't remove all of the data cleansing part, but it does help take care of some of the certainly the low level data science requirements, you think you think that's a viable solution in this area?  Paul I think it is. I mean, it's, you know, we went from rule based AI, where data scientists had to do good old fashioned AI, which was a feature engineering, right? Putting the rules themselves to machine learning AI, where, you know, we had to train the data that we needed, were so dependent on these data scientists. And now we're getting to v3, where we have these tools. And you know, there's a data dependency, but there, they also don't have such a high dependency on data scientists are and you know, figuring our algorithms and etc, we could just basically have these prepackaged algorithms that could basically output us any types of solution. What I tend to like, I've seen this a lot in a lot of companies. There's some companies that are very, very industry specific, right? So they're providing AI for E-commerce to be able to provide better search with predictive elements based on the person's browsing history. I mean, I, I'm not sure, but the ones that are providing every ML imaginable, so you could use it for supply chain, or you could use it for something else. I know it's dependent on data. But again, these algorithms, you can't have all the algorithms for all scenarios.  Even if it's supply chain, some person has perishables and there's ordering bananas and the other person is ordering, I don't know water coolers, and those, those don't have the same rules, right. You know, so it's, it's important to just, I think that maybe in the coming years, we'll have a lot of companies that are really going cross industry, just like we're in E-commerce, the other ones that are med tech, the other ones are, etcetera, the tools are the same. I mean, more or less the same, the customers are gonna get used to basically having these UI is that I'll give you your input the data in and then these emails come out, and then you choose which one and they give you probability you can retrain them and all that stuff. And I think that it's just going to get to a point where we're going to have these product managers who are now responsible of kind of training the Machine Learning Module themselves, you know if it's going to be the product manager, or if it's going to be some other function, where I think it does definitely fit inside the product managers? Grant Well I do is, I think it's because they still need to have what we would call the domain knowledge and in this domain of building products, yeah, AI, at least at least in this phase of the life of AI, where we are today for the foreseeable future. I think the product manager needs to be involved with that. Sure. So. Paul It comes down to intuition, right, somebody has to have like to build that intuition about what a model is relying on when making a judgment. And I think that, you know, with product managers, the closest one really, maybe in bigger organizations, it's the person who's managing analytics and data, but in smaller startup organization, I can definitely see the product manager putting that  Grant Yeah, absolutely. Paul, I really appreciate you taking the time. Here today on this been fascinating conversation. Any last comments you want to share? Paul We have tons of articles that talk about so we're very open source as an organization. So if you want to learn more about this, we have about 70 articles on our website. Just go to BainPublic.com and just click on "Articles" and you could just, you know, self serve and basically improve as a product manager in the AI space. Grant Excellent, fascinating, love, love the conversation, your insight and the vision where you guys are taking this I think you're gonna continue to disrupt everyone. Thanks for joining another episode of ClickAI Radio and until next time, check out BainPublic.com. Thank you for joining Grant on ClickAI Radio. Don't forget to subscribe and leave feedback. And remember to download your free ebook visit ClickAIRadio.com now.  

New Products
#NewProducts 12/14/22 Feat FeatherS2Neo Blingy RGB ESP32-S2 Feather

New Products

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 15, 2022 10:06


Snap Action 3-to-9 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-93 (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5614?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 2-to-6 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-62 (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5615?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 3-to-3 Wiring Block Connector - Clear PCT-2-3M (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5618?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 1-to-5 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-15 (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5616?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 5-to-5 Wiring Block Connector - Gray PCT-2-5 (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5617?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 1-to-1 Wiring Block Connector - Pack of 5 - Clear PCT-2-1M (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5619?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Adafruit MOSFET Driver - For Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc - STEMMA JST PH 2mm (4:20) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5648?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts FeatherS2 Neo - Blingy RGB ESP32-S2 Feather Development Board - Unexpected Maker (6:20) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5629?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts ----------------------------------------- New nEw NEWs New Products, News, and more: https://www.adafruit.com/newsletter #newnewnew Shop for all of the newest Adafruit products: http://adafru.it/new Visit the Adafruit shop online - http://www.adafruit.com Adafruit on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adafruit LIVE CHAT IS HERE! http://adafru.it/discord Subscribe to Adafruit on YouTube: http://adafru.it/subscribe New tutorials on the Adafruit Learning System: http://learn.adafruit.com/ -----------------------------------------

Adafruit Industries
#NewProducts 12/14/22 Feat FeatherS2Neo Blingy RGB ESP32-S2 Feather

Adafruit Industries

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 15, 2022 10:06


Snap Action 3-to-9 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-93 (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5614?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 2-to-6 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-62 (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5615?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 3-to-3 Wiring Block Connector - Clear PCT-2-3M (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5618?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 1-to-5 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-15 (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5616?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 5-to-5 Wiring Block Connector - Gray PCT-2-5 (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5617?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 1-to-1 Wiring Block Connector - Pack of 5 - Clear PCT-2-1M (0:24) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5619?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Adafruit MOSFET Driver - For Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc - STEMMA JST PH 2mm (4:20) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5648?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts FeatherS2 Neo - Blingy RGB ESP32-S2 Feather Development Board - Unexpected Maker (6:20) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5629?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts ----------------------------------------- New nEw NEWs New Products, News, and more: https://www.adafruit.com/newsletter #newnewnew Shop for all of the newest Adafruit products: http://adafru.it/new Visit the Adafruit shop online - http://www.adafruit.com Adafruit on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adafruit LIVE CHAT IS HERE! http://adafru.it/discord Subscribe to Adafruit on YouTube: http://adafru.it/subscribe New tutorials on the Adafruit Learning System: http://learn.adafruit.com/ -----------------------------------------

ClickAI Radio
CAIR 77: Using AI In Your Product Delivery To Leap Ahead !!

ClickAI Radio

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 15, 2022 31:53


In this episode, I talk with the CEO and founder of an organization that has been applying AI to help them develop products. Will AI help you develop your products faster? Come and see. Grant Hey, everybody, welcome to another episode of ClickAI Radio. So today I have this opportunity to speak with one of those brains out there in the market that's being disruptive, right? They're making changes in the industry in terms of not only the problems are solving, but it's the way in which they're solving the problems using AI very fascinating. Anyway, everyone, please welcome Paul Ortchanian here to the show. Paul Hi, nice. Nice, nice of you, happy to be here on the show.  Grant Absolutely. It's very good to have you here today. When I was first introduced to you. And I started to review your material what it is that your organization has put together as fascinated with the approach because I have a product development background and in in the software world. AI was late comer to that right meaning over generations when I saw the approach that you're taking to that I'm interested to dig more into that. But before we do that big reveal, could you maybe step back and talk about the beginning your journey? What got you on this route? And this map, both in terms of product development, and technology and AI itself? Paul Yeah, absolutely. So I started out as an engineer, headed down to San Francisco in the early 2000s. And, and I was more of a thinker than an actual engineer, or just be the type of guy who would figure things out by themselves. But if you were to ask me to really do things that the real things engineers do, you know, creativity was there, but not the solutioning. So being in San Francisco was a humbling experience, I guess, Silicon Valley, you get to see some really, really good engineers. So I had to make a shift in my career. And since I had a passion for user experience, the business aspect, product management was a great fit a function I didn't really understand. And I got to learn and respect, and did that for about 10 years.  In the mid 2000s, and 10s, I basically moved back to Montreal for family reasons and cost of living, of course in San Francisco. And I started a company called Bank Biddick, which in French stands for public bath. And the idea is that most what I realized in Canada was that people here in accelerators, incubators and, and startups just didn't understand what product management was. So they didn't really understand what they do and how they do it. And I saw a lot of organizations being led by the marketing teams, or the sales team and being very service oriented and not really product LED.  So basically, it basically stands for public bath, which means every quarter, you want to basically apply some hygiene to your roadmap, you have a galaxy of ideas, why not go out there and just, you know, take the good ones and remove the old ones and get rid of the dirt. And we started with that premise. And we put we said, well, what does a product manager do on a on a quarterly basis? Because a lot of the material you'll read out there really talks about, you know what product managers should do in terms of personas and understanding the customer's data and this and that, but nobody really tells you which order you should do it. Right. If that was my initial struggle as a product manager, do you try to do it all in the same day and then you realize that there's not enough time? So the question is like in a one quarter 12 week cycle, as my first three weeks should be about understanding the market shifts the industry, the product competitors and and the users and then maybe in the next three weeks working with leadership on making sure that there is no pivots in the organization or there are some some major strategic changes and then going into analyzing the DIS parking lot of ideas and figuring out which ones are short term and re and making business cases in order to present them for, for the company to make a decision on What to do next on the roadmap.  So there is a process and we just call that process SOAP, which goes in line with our public bath theme. So the idea was like, let's let's give product managers SOAP to basically wash their roadmap on a quarterly basis. And, and that's what being public does. And we work with over 40 organizations today so far, on really implementing this product LEDs process within their organizations, we work with their leaders on identifying a product manager within the organization and making sure that marketing support sales, the CFO CEO really understand how to engage with them what to expect from them, and how product manager can add value to to the organization. And so they just doesn't become, you know, this grace towards them as many features as you can pump out, right. Grant Oh, boy, yeah. Which, which is constant problem. The other thing that I've noticed, and I'm wondering if, and I'm sure that your SOAP methodology addresses this, it's the problem of shifting an organization in terams of their funding model, right? They'll come from sort of these project centric or service centric funding styles, and then you've got to help them through that shift to a different funding model round products. You guys address that as well. Paul Yeah, we address that a lot. One of the things we always tell them is if you are a service professional services firm, and you know, I have no issues basically calling them that. If and I asked them like do you quantify staff utilization in percentages, like 70% of our engineers are being billed? Right? Do we basically look at the sales team? How many new deals do they have in terms of pipeline? Are we looking at on time delivery across those, so double use that to serve the sales team closed? And what is our time and technical staff attrition, that usually tends to be identifiers of you being a service firm? And we often ask them, well, let's let's make the shift, when we identify one little initiative that you have that you want to productize because they all these service firms, really all they want is recurring revenue, then the service is tough, right?  That you constantly have to bring in new clients. So this recurring revenue, the path to recurring revenue is, you know, being able to say, Okay, I'm going to take two engineers, one sales person, one marketing person, one support person, and a product manager. And those guys collectively will cost me a million dollars a year, and I'm going to expect them to basically bring me $3 million in recurring revenue. That means that they're, they're no longer going to be evaluated on staff utilization, they're no longer going to be evaluating the number of deals they're bringing in. And they're, they're really going to be evaluated on how are they releasing features? Are they creating value for those features? are we increasing the number of paid customers? And are we basically, you know, staying abreast in terms of competitors and market industry changes.  And so that's a complete paradigm shift. And that transition takes a while. But the first seed is really being able to say, can you create an entity within your organization where the CFO accepts that those engineers are dedicated and no longer being, you know, reviewed in terms of their utilization rate in terms of their know how much they're billing to customers? Once they do that shift in the recipe is pretty easy to do. Grant Yeah. So it's become easy. So the thing to I've seen and experienced with, with product and product development is the relationship of innovation to product development. And so I see some groups will take innovation, and they'll move that as some separate activity or function in the organization, whereas others will have that innate within the product team itself. What have you found effective? And does self addressed that? Paul Yeah, I mean, we always ask them the question of what how are you going to defend yourself against the competition with the VCs that have to call their moat, right? And that defensibility could be innovation, it could also be your global footprint, or, you know, it could be how you operationalize your supply chain make things really, really cheap, right? Every company can have a different strategy. And we really ask them from the get go. We call this playing the strategy, we'll give them like eight potential ways a company can, you know, find strategies to differentiate themselves? And the first one is first the market?  And the question is, it's not about you being first to market today. But do you want to outpace your curlier closest rivals on a regular basis? And if so, you know, you need an r&d team and innovation team who is basically going to be pumping out commercializable features or r&d work. And then we always give him the two examples, the example of Dolby Dolby being completely analog in the 70s, but really banking on their r&d team to bring him to the digital age and from the digital age to set top boxes to Hollywood and now into Netflix compression, right?  So they basically put their R&D team as the leader to basically keep them a step ahead of their competition. But it but on the other hand, we also Welcome, you know, talk about Tesla, where Tesla is basically doing the same thing, but they're not doing it for intellectual property like Dolby, they're not suing anybody are actually open sourcing it. But there's a reason behind it where that open sourcing allows them to basically create the, you know, what we call the Betamax VHS issue, which is making sure that there's compatibility across car manufacturers for Tesla parts and overproduction of parts that are Tesla just to increase their supply chain, right? So we ask them, Do you want to be that company, if you don't want to be that company, then there's other ways for you to basically create defensibility, it could be regulatory compliance, if your industry requires it, you can go global, you can go cross industry, you can basically create customer logins, how just how SAP and Salesforce love to basically just integrate workflows with like boots on the ground, professional services certified teams, right?  And or you can basically review your process and make sure just like Amazon, that you're creating robots to do human work in order to just basically do it cheaper than anybody else. So there's ways of doing it. And I would say that if you were in AI space, especially, you know, it's important to make sure that, you know, are you really trying to innovate through AI, because you can get a lot of researchers doing a lot of things, but that's not really going to help you create commercializable ideas. So from the get go, the leadership team needs to, you know, at least make a hedge a bet on, you know, expansion, innovation, or creating efficiencies and just, you know, decide and let the product management team know in which direction they're gonna go planning on going for the next six years. Please. Grant I love your last comment there, Paul about about getting the leadership team involved. It seems that many times in organizations, this challenge of making the change sticky, right, making it last making it resonate, where people truly change their operating model, right, they're going to start operating in a different way, their roles and responsibilities change, what is the order in which things get done all of those change, when they start moving both into this AI space, but you know, product driven just by itself, even without AI has its own set of challenges? So here's the question I have for you. As you move companies through this transformation, that's part of your business, right? You are transforming the way companies operate and bring about better outcomes. How do you make those changes sticky? Because this is a cultural change? What is it you guys have found it's effective? Paul Or it goes back to our name public bath and SOAP, right? Because the idea is, you take a bath on a regular basis hygiene is something you do regularly, right? So we ask these organization, if we give you a process where you know exactly what the product management team is going to do with you with the leadership team in order to prioritize your next upcoming features, then can you do it in a cyclical way, every quarter, you need the product manager do the exact same process of revisiting the competitors, the industry, the market, as well as like the problems that you have with your premature customers, bringing it back to the organization, asking if the strategy is still about expansion, innovation, efficiencies, identifying new ideas, clearing up the parking lot of bad ideas, etc, and eventually making the business case for the new features in order for them to make a commitment. So if we do this in a cyclical way, then the product role becomes the role of what I'd like to call the CRO, which is the chief repeating officer, because all the product manager is doing is repeating that strategy and questioning the CEO, are we still on? Are we pivoting or if we pivot?  What does that mean? And if you're doing it on a three month basis, what that allows your company to do is to make sure that the marketing and sales and support team are going along with what the engineering team is going to be delivering. So this is what I usually see most product organization where a decision has been made that the engineers are going to be building a particular feature, the sales and marketing team just waits for the engineers to be Code Complete. And once a code completes, done, they're like, Okay, now we're gonna promote it. But my question is that it's too late. Right? You really need so I always show the talk about Apple, how Apple would basically go out in front of millions of people and just say, here's the new iPhone 13. And we came up with a new version of Safari, and we're updating our iOS and we're doing a 40 Other changes. And the next thing you want considered an Apple store and you know, everything has changed. The marketing has changed the guys that the doing the conferences, and the lectures and the training are all talking about the new supplier, the new iPhone, and you ask yourself, How did how did Apple know and to organize the marketing support and sales team in that in such a way that the day that the announcement has been done? Everything is changed. So that means that it's not just the engineering team's responsibility to get to Code Complete.  It is a collective responsibility where marketing support and sales are also preparing for the upcoming releases. And and the only way you can get that type of alignment is If every three months these these parties, technology, product, CEO, CFO, sales, marketing and support can get together and make a clear decision on what they're going to do, and be honest enough of what they're not going to do, and then work collectively together on making sure that that those are being delivered and prepared in terms of the size of the promotion that we're going to do, and how are we going to outreach how's the sales collateral going to change? How is the support team going to support these upcoming features. And so everybody has work to do in that three months timeframes. So and then that if we can get to that cyclical elements, I think most companies can create momentum. And once that momentum has is generating small increments of value to the customers, then you base start start building, what I like to call reputational capital, with the clients, with the customers with the prospects. And eventually anything you release the love, and everything you release adds value. And eventually everybody loves everything you're doing as an organization become that, you know, big unicorn that people want to be. Grant Yeah, so the net of that is, I believe what you said as you operationalize it. Now there's it gets integrated into everyone's role and responsibility. It's this enterprise level cross functional alignment that gets on a campus. And the cadence is, in your case, you'd mentioned quarterly, quarterly sounds like that's been a real real gem for you. I've seen some organizations do that in shorter timeframes and some much longer. It sounds like yeah, at least quarterly is that a good nugget that you find there?  Paul Yeah, quarterly works, because you know, markets are set in a quarter way they operate in that way the you want results on a quarterly basis in terms of sales in terms of engagement, etc. But what's important is that which you know, a lot of engineering teams like to work agile or Kanban. And in a quarter in a 12 week timeframe, you could fit, I'd say, Let's see your Sprint's are three weeks, you could fit for sprint for three weeks variance, or you could fit six 2-week sprints. But I feel that if you were to shorten it, then the marketing team and sales teams supporting might not have enough time to prepare themselves for Code Complete, the engineers might be able to deliver but then the product manager gets overwhelmed because doing an industry research, competitor research etc. Every, say month and a half or two months just becomes overwhelming for them. Because things don't change enough in two months for them to be able to say, Oh, look, this competitor just came up with that. And now we need so so I think three months is enough time for the world to change for, you know, country to go to war for COVID to come over and just destroy everything. So pivot decisions are usually can pretty good to do on a on a quarterly basis.  Grant Yeah, that's good. That's, I think COVID follow that rule. Right. Hey, I have a question for you around AI. So how are you leveraging AI in the midst of all this? Can you talk about that? Paul Yeah, absolutely. So what we noticed is a lot of organizations who have products, so SaaS products, or any type of product, IoT products, etc, they're generating data. I mean, it's it comes hand in hand with software development. So all that data is going into these databases are and nobody knows what to do with them. And eventually, you know, they want to start creating business intelligence, and from business intelligence, AI initiatives have just come about, it's very normal to say, You know what, with all this data, if we were to train a machine learning module, we would be able to recommend the best flight price or the best time for somebody to buy a flight, because we have enough data to do it. So so we're not working with AI first organizations who are here we have, our entire product is going to be around AI, we're just trying to work with organizations that have enough data to warrant 1-2-3, or four AI initiatives and an ongoing investment into those. So the best example I like to talk about is the Google Gmail suggestive, replies, right, which is adding value to the user needs AI in the back, end a lot of data.  But ultimately, it's not that Gmail isn't AI product, it simply has AI features in it. So and when organizations start identifying AI or machine learning, predictive elements to their product, then we go from engineering being a deterministic function, which is if we were to deliver this feature, then customers will be able to do that to a probabilistic function where Let's experiment and see what the data can give us. And if this algorithm ends up really nailing it, we will achieve this result. But if it doesn't, then do we release it? Do we not release it?  What's the and then it gets a little bit hairy because product managers just lose themselves into it. Oftentimes, they'll release a feature and the sales team would just ask them to pull it out right away because it has not met the expectations of a customer or two. And ultimately, like what we ask product managers to do is work with leadership on really it Identifying a few key elements that are very, very important to just just baseline before you were to begin an AI project. And those are pretty simple. It's, it's really like, are you trying to create to have the machine learning module? Make a prediction? Are you or are you trying for it to make a prediction plus pass judgment? Are you trying to make it a prediction, a judgment and take action? Right? Decision automation, which is what you know, self driving cars do, will will see biker, they will make a prediction that it's a biker will make a judgment that it's indeed a biker, and we'll take action to avoid the biker, right?  But when you when you're creating ml projects, you can easily say, you know, we're just going to keep it to prediction, right? Like this machine is going to predict something and then a human will make judgment and the human will take action. There's nothing wrong in doing that. So just setting the expectations for from the get go in terms of are we basically going to predict judge or take action? That's number one. And then the next question is whatever that we decide if it's just prediction, is that worth guessing? And who doesn't have guessed today, if it's a human? Is that how accurate is that human? Let's quantify. So this way we can compare it against what this machine is going to do? What is the value the company gets out of that gas being the right gas? And what's the cost of getting it wrong? So oftentimes, we forget that humans to get it wrong to and if humans get it wrong, there are huge consequences to organizations that will overlook but as soon as machine learning does the same thing, we're ready to just cancel hundreds of $1,000 of investment.  Grant Yeah, that's right. Yeah, we tossed it out. So the use case, I'm assuming would be you would leverage AI to say enhance a product managers abilities to either predict outcomes of some product development activities, or releases or things like that, would that be a kind of use case where he looked apply? Paul Well, not a product managers, I would say the product manager, we'd look at it software, let's take the software of a website that tries to predict your if people qualify for a mortgage loan, for example, right? So you have enough data at that point to be able to automate, what's the underwriting process that humans do of validating whether or not somebody's eligible for loan? Well, we could take all that data and just make a prediction of that person's fit for a particular loan. Now, if we were to say, well, it's just going to be the prediction, but we're not going to give this person the loan, we're still going to ask a human being to pass judgment that that prediction was the correct one, and then take action to give or not give him a loan.  So let's say that's the machine learning module, we're going to add to our to our feature. Now, the question is how this underwriting department in the past 10 years, how often did they really screw up that, you know, and issued loans to people that were that couldn't pay their loan, right? And realize it's 40%? Were like, Wow, 40%? Could this machine learning be as accurate as damn plus one, right? And, and then we ended up realizing that yeah, this, whatever we delivered is 33% accurate, and not 40% plus one accurate now is it still worth putting out there we spent $100,000 into it, and then you know, then it's up to the product manager to basically be able to put this thing in place and say, but look, you know, underwriting is a nine to five job currently in our business, and it cost us this much money.  On the other hand, if there's this machine learning is 33% accurate, but it's actually doing it 24/7 365 days a year, and it's only going to improve from 33 to 40. And if it goes above 40, then we the savings for our organization are this much money. So it is really the product managers job to be able to not only talking about the business KPIs, but also the what the AI machine learning KPIs we need to achieve and what the impact of that would be if we get it right. And I think that the biggest issue we have as product managers in the AI space is if we were to go and do this all there everything that we need to create AI, like the day data ops, selecting the data, sourcing it, synthesizing it, cleaning it, etc. The model ops, which, you know, comes down to multiple algorithms, training those algorithms, evaluating tuning them, and then the operationalization. If you do all these steps, and you get to 80 to 20% accuracy, and your target is at 70% accuracy, right? What do you do with it?  Because you had to do all this work anyways, it cost you tons of money and time. And so how do we get the leadership team to say this AI initiative has enough value for us that we're willing to live with the consequences of it getting it wrong, or we're willing to actually have it supported by human for the next six months to a year until we basically trains itself and gets better? So it's how do you get this openness from from from a leadership team? Because what I've often find delivering AI projects is every time you deliver an AI project, and it's misunderstood in terms of its output, and everybody thinks it has to be 100% accurate, the second and goes wrong. It's the political drama that you have to go through in order to keep it alive. is just it's just overwhelming, right? So miners will set those expectations up front and tool, the product managers with the right arguments to make sure that they the expectations are set correctly. Grant Have you ever worked with or heard of the company called digital.ai? Are your familiar with them? digital.ai, maybe not. Anyway, they have been working in a similar space as you but not so much of the product management level. What they're doing, though, is they're, they're looking to apply AI to the whole delivery function. So so you can you see, the product manager is above this, and is making sort of these KPIs and other estimate activities and the planning out. But then there are all these functions under there that of course, do the delivery of the product. And so they're working on the tooling spectrum, I think they acquired I think, was five different companies like in the last nine months, that they're integrating these and then building this AI seam or layer across that data across delivery with that purpose and intent to do that predictive not not only backwards analysis activities around AI, but predictive, which is what's the probabilities, I might run into the problem, or some problem with this particular release, right, of this product, right, that we're about to send out, now might be an interesting group for you to get connected with. Paul Yeah, I know, it's funny, because we're there. There's a local company here in Montreal that does the same thing. It's really about like data scientists are really expensive, and they're really hard to find, and there's a shortage of them. So, you know, the lot of organizations are trying to find like a self serve AI solution where you can build your AI using their AI. But ultimately, what they're doing is taking your data and delivering 123 or 10 versions of the machine learning module, it's up to you basically, judge which one is going to work the best for you, but they actually operationalize it, put it out there for you, and really automate the whole thing. So this way, you're not dependent on humans, I love that I really love that I think your organization should have one of those. But that still means that there's a dependency from the for the product manager to know that it's, it's data, like end to end, be able to clean it be able to tag it and then feed it to the to these machines, right? And I think that part is also misunderstood. Because Do we have enough data? Is there bias in the data and all that needs to be understood and figure it out? Because, you know, you could say like, Hey, we put it to this big machine. And we ended up with a 20% accuracy on the best ml that it out, put it, but that's still not good enough? Because we're trying, we're aiming for 87? And what does it mean? What do we need to do to basically get it to 87? We're gonna have to review the data bringing some third party data, you know, and it's, and that's, that costs a lot as well. So, yeah, Grant Do you think AutoML solutions play a role here like, Aible, I don't know if you're familiar with that platform, you know, that the goal is to try to reduce the amount of dependency that's needed on the data science. Scientists themselves, right. And but it's, it's still doesn't remove all of the data cleansing part, but it does help take care of some of the certainly the low level data science requirements, you think you think that's a viable solution in this area?  Paul I think it is. I mean, it's, you know, we went from rule based AI, where data scientists had to do good old fashioned AI, which was a feature engineering, right? Putting the rules themselves to machine learning AI, where, you know, we had to train the data that we needed, were so dependent on these data scientists. And now we're getting to v3, where we have these tools. And you know, there's a data dependency, but there, they also don't have such a high dependency on data scientists are and you know, figuring our algorithms and etc, we could just basically have these prepackaged algorithms that could basically output us any types of solution. What I tend to like, I've seen this a lot in a lot of companies. There's some companies that are very, very industry specific, right? So they're providing AI for E-commerce to be able to provide better search with predictive elements based on the person's browsing history. I mean, I, I'm not sure, but the ones that are providing every ML imaginable, so you could use it for supply chain, or you could use it for something else. I know it's dependent on data. But again, these algorithms, you can't have all the algorithms for all scenarios.  Even if it's supply chain, some person has perishables and there's ordering bananas and the other person is ordering, I don't know water coolers, and those, those don't have the same rules, right. You know, so it's, it's important to just, I think that maybe in the coming years, we'll have a lot of companies that are really going cross industry, just like we're in E-commerce, the other ones that are med tech, the other ones are, etcetera, the tools are the same. I mean, more or less the same, the customers are gonna get used to basically having these UI is that I'll give you your input the data in and then these emails come out, and then you choose which one and they give you probability you can retrain them and all that stuff. And I think that it's just going to get to a point where we're going to have these product managers who are now responsible of kind of training the Machine Learning Module themselves, you know if it's going to be the product manager, or if it's going to be some other function, where I think it does definitely fit inside the product managers? Grant Well I do is, I think it's because they still need to have what we would call the domain knowledge and in this domain of building products, yeah, AI, at least at least in this phase of the life of AI, where we are today for the foreseeable future. I think the product manager needs to be involved with that. Sure. So. Paul It comes down to intuition, right, somebody has to have like to build that intuition about what a model is relying on when making a judgment. And I think that, you know, with product managers, the closest one really, maybe in bigger organizations, it's the person who's managing analytics and data, but in smaller startup organization, I can definitely see the product manager putting that  Grant Yeah, absolutely. Paul, I really appreciate you taking the time. Here today on this been fascinating conversation. Any last comments you want to share? Paul We have tons of articles that talk about so we're very open source as an organization. So if you want to learn more about this, we have about 70 articles on our website. Just go to BainPublic.com and just click on "Articles" and you could just, you know, self serve and basically improve as a product manager in the AI space. Grant Excellent, fascinating, love, love the conversation, your insight and the vision where you guys are taking this I think you're gonna continue to disrupt everyone. Thanks for joining another episode of ClickAI Radio and until next time, check out BainPublic.com. Thank you for joining Grant on ClickAI Radio. Don't forget to subscribe and leave feedback. And remember to download your free ebook visit ClickAIRadio.com now.  

New Products
#NewProducts 12/7/22 Feat. Adafruit MOSFET Driver - Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc - STEMMA JSTPH 2mm

New Products

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 8, 2022 8:25


Rubber Slide Potentiometer Nubbin - Pack of 3 (0:27) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5621?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts 2.8" TFT LCD with Cap Touch Breakout Board w/MicroSD Socket - EYESPI Connector (2:30) https://www.adafruit.com/product/2090?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Nightjar - Analog Electronic Birdsong Synthesizer - Kelly Heaton (5:04) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5654?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 3-to-3 Wiring Block Connector - Clear PCT-2-3M (7:00) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5618?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 2-to-6 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-62 (7:00) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5615?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 3-to-9 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-93 (7:00) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5614?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Adafruit MOSFET Driver - For Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc - STEMMA JST PH 2mm (7:41) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5648?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts ----------------------------------------- New nEw NEWs New Products, News, and more: https://www.adafruit.com/newsletter #newnewnew Shop for all of the newest Adafruit products: http://adafru.it/new Visit the Adafruit shop online - http://www.adafruit.com Adafruit on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adafruit LIVE CHAT IS HERE! http://adafru.it/discord Subscribe to Adafruit on YouTube: http://adafru.it/subscribe New tutorials on the Adafruit Learning System: http://learn.adafruit.com/ -----------------------------------------

Adafruit Industries
#NewProducts 12/7/22 Feat. Adafruit MOSFET Driver - Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc - STEMMA JSTPH 2mm

Adafruit Industries

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 8, 2022 8:25


Rubber Slide Potentiometer Nubbin - Pack of 3 (0:27) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5621?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts 2.8" TFT LCD with Cap Touch Breakout Board w/MicroSD Socket - EYESPI Connector (2:30) https://www.adafruit.com/product/2090?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Nightjar - Analog Electronic Birdsong Synthesizer - Kelly Heaton (5:04) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5654?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 3-to-3 Wiring Block Connector - Clear PCT-2-3M (7:00) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5618?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 2-to-6 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-62 (7:00) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5615?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Snap Action 3-to-9 Wiring Block Connector - Clear DF-93 (7:00) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5614?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts Adafruit MOSFET Driver - For Motors, Solenoids, LEDs, etc - STEMMA JST PH 2mm (7:41) https://www.adafruit.com/product/5648?utm_source=youtube&utm_medium=videodescrip&utm_campaign=newproducts ----------------------------------------- New nEw NEWs New Products, News, and more: https://www.adafruit.com/newsletter #newnewnew Shop for all of the newest Adafruit products: http://adafru.it/new Visit the Adafruit shop online - http://www.adafruit.com Adafruit on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adafruit LIVE CHAT IS HERE! http://adafru.it/discord Subscribe to Adafruit on YouTube: http://adafru.it/subscribe New tutorials on the Adafruit Learning System: http://learn.adafruit.com/ -----------------------------------------

Grand Master Level Podcast
GRAND MASTER LEVEL GROWNONYMOUS #DIY

Grand Master Level Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 8, 2022 162:20


Interested in LEDS ? USA https://grandmasterleds.com/CANADA  https://grandmasterleds.ca/To Watch live register at https://gmlshow.com/

Grand Master Level Podcast
GRAND MASTER LEVEL MEDGROWER1 JOINS US, BERNER LAUNCHES SOCIAL CLUB, MARS HYDRO HAS DESIGN COPIED

Grand Master Level Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 8, 2022 129:31


Interested in LEDS ? USA https://grandmasterleds.com/CANADA  https://grandmasterleds.ca/To Watch live register at https://gmlshow.com/

Grand Master Level Podcast
GRAND MASTER LEVEL MEDGRWER1 RETURNS , SATURDAY NIGHT THROWN DOWN

Grand Master Level Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 8, 2022 130:55


Interested in LEDS ? USA https://grandmasterleds.com/CANADA  https://grandmasterleds.ca/To Watch live register at https://gmlshow.com/

Grand Master Level Podcast
GRAND MASTER LEVEL OPEN MIC #LATESTART

Grand Master Level Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 7, 2022 148:20


Interested in LEDS ? USA https://grandmasterleds.com/CANADA  https://grandmasterleds.ca/To Watch live register at https://gmlshow.com/

Grand Master Level Podcast
GRAND MASTER LEVEL - LUXX GOES UNDER, EFFICACY TITLE #saturdaythrowdown

Grand Master Level Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 7, 2022 134:25


Interested in LEDS ? USA https://grandmasterleds.com/CANADA  https://grandmasterleds.ca/To Watch live register at https://gmlshow.com/

ThinkEnergy
What Electricity Customers Want with Julie Lupinacci

ThinkEnergy

Play Episode Listen Later Dec 5, 2022 54:55


The energy sector is evolving at lightning speed, and customer expectations are at an all-time high. As are concerns about electricity itself – how it's produced, how reliable it is, how much it costs, and how efficiently it's powering our lives. So, how are utilities planning to meet expectations and address these concerns? In episode 100 of the thinkenergy podcast, we sit down with Hydro Ottawa's Chief Customer Officer, Julie Lupinacci, to discuss what electricity customers want and the solutions we're delivering.  Related links   Julie Lupinacci, LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/juliejlupinacci/   Julie Lupinacci, Twitter: https://twitter.com/juliejlupinacci  Power outage safety: https://www.hydroottawa.com/en/outages-safety/outage-centre/outage-safety  Energy saving resources: https://www.hydroottawa.com/en/save-energy 2021–2025 strategic direction: https://hydroottawa.com/en/about-us/our-company/our-reports    To subscribe using Apple Podcasts To subscribe using Spotify To subscribe on Libsyn --- Subscribe so you don't miss a video: YouTube Check out our cool pics on Instagram     Transcript:   Think_Energy_Podcast_EP100_V2 What Electricity Customers Want SUMMARY KEYWORDS customers, ottawa, working, hydro, people, electricity, programs, julie, city, planning, energy, pandemic, talk, utilities, component, industry, happening, community, cases, helping SPEAKERS Dan Seguin, Julie Lupinacci   Dan Seguin  00:06 This is thinkenergy, the podcast that helps you better understand the fast changing world of energy through conversations with game changers, industry leaders, and influencers. So join me, Dan Seguin, as I explore both traditional and unconventional facets of the energy industry. Hey, everyone, welcome back. Today's show marks the 100th podcast episode. Woohoo. It's hard to believe that we've already reached this milestone. I want to thank everyone that has worked behind the scenes on the show, our incredible guests who graciously share their time and expertise. And of course, dear listener, thank you for tuning into our program. It's truly been an honor for me to share information about the energy sector and all of the amazing people that work in this industry. So with that, let's get on with today's 100th podcast episode. As we discussed over many interviews, the energy landscape is evolving at lightning speed. Those innovations and changes are coming fast and furious. And there's a lot for customers to absorb. It's clear that perhaps more than at any other time in history, customers are thinking about their electricity, how it's made, how reliable it is, how much it costs, and how they can be more in control of it to power their lives. What customers want and expect is changing the electricity sector. It's changing how utilities do business, how they communicate, and what service offerings they provide. customer expectations have never been higher, and utilities must evolve, innovate and provide exceptional expertise, programs and technology to give customers what they want and expect from a modern utility from smart home tech that can help customers manage their device and overall consumption to home generation technology like solar panels, batteries for energy storage, and incentives for installing goes renewables and even how to better prepare for a changing climate, more storms and an increase in frequent and prolonged power outages. So, here's today's big question. How are utilities planning to meet the expectations of today's customer and their needs? Today's guest is my boss, Julie Lupinacci. As the Chief Customer Officer at Hydro Ottawa, Julie is responsible for developing and implementing the customer strategy, transforming the total customer experience and guiding the direction of the business in terms of customer needs. She provides oversight for customer service marketing, product development, external communications, Public Affairs, corporate reputation, and the overall branding strategies. With more than 15 years in Customer Care, sales and marketing, Julie has a wide background in business including project management, customer and vendor relations, international partner program management, procurement, sales, marketing, and program development. Wow. Julie, thanks for joining us today. Now, you've been in the electricity industry approximately five years now, maybe a little more in comparison to your experience with customers in other industries? How are electricity customers different? How are their needs unique?   Julie Lupinacci  04:11 Yeah, so it's been interesting. And when I when I got this question, I was thinking back on the last five years and how much I've learned about the industry and learn about our customers in particular and I would say the basis of what's different is is the industry we're in right like Hydro Ottawa is a this is essentially provides an essential service to our customers, which didn't happen in my previous in my previous world. So the fact that the customers rely on us for a product that is so essential in so many aspects of their lives. For some customers, it's a matter of life and death, right? That in itself changes how we work with our customers and what their needs are, and what we need to support. So that reality is something that we have to hold in the forefront of everything that we do. The very nature of what customers need from us makes that different, right? The timelines of what they need are tighter. And the criticality of our communications to customers becomes even more heightened. Whether it be a storm, or an outage, or an outage at one person's house, like that doesn't matter, the customer is out of what we need to provide. And the criticality of getting that back in a very condensed time frame, in order for that customer to continue moving forward, becomes essential. So everything becomes a lot tighter and more critical. And I would say the other component of what we provide, it's not a, in some cases, customers don't have a choice right on whether they need electricity or not, like I guess in fundamentally, they could figure that out. But if you've come to rely on electricity for your daily needs, and to run your households, the fact that electricity is now part of your requirements, you don't get to have a choice necessarily do I? Do I want electricity today or tomorrow to put my lights on? Affordability becomes a big component. And it's one that we need to think about for our customers: the choices on how we develop the grid, how we evolve as an organization, we need to keep affordability, sustainability, and the fact that energy needs to be attainable for our customers that has to guide what we do. And that's not true for every of every industry, and definitely not true for the previous ones I've worked for.   Dan Seguin  06:53 Julie, what are the three biggest issues for electricity customers right now?   Julie Lupinacci  07:01 Yeah, I think right now, in the November 2022, or December 2022, as this airs, affordability is probably front of mind, for most customers, the share of wallet is just not going as far with the cost of inflation. I think that's probably the primary issue for electricity customers right now. But I would say that a close second is, what the reliability of this electricity is. So the climate adaptation that we are doing as an entire city, as we're looking at what you know, more extreme weather events that are coming, the reliability of what we provide is probably a close second, right? So they want to be able to afford the commodity that is coming into their house. But they also want to be able to rely on it. And as they're making choices for what their energy future is going to be, as they're making choices about what car they're going to be purchasing next, as they're going to make choices for how they're going to heat and cool their home and making choices about fuel sources. You want to make sure that you're choosing what's reliable and that you know, reliability is there. So I think affordability and reliability are close one and two. And that is sustainable, right? We've got a lot of people that are thinking about their future, their carbon footprint, their net zero. So I think people are looking at how I conserve my energy usage? How am I smart about what I'm doing? And how am I making sure that I'm choosing things that are going to be there for the long haul, right and looking for something that's sustainable, that's good for our planet, but it's going to be around and something that they can count on. Okay,   Dan Seguin  08:53 Now I have a follow up question. What are some of the ways that hydro Ottawa is addressing those customer issues?   Julie Lupinacci  08:59 Yeah, so we're doing a number of different things. So one, I think how we put together plans for the growth of the grid, how we put plans to maintain the grid and evolve the grid is definitely something that we look at with those three things in mind. But also from a customer perspective, we are looking at bringing programs to them to help them have more access and more readily access to that information. So get a hold of their data so they can start making decisions. We're working with the Ministry of Energy on different pricing programs that might make sense according to the different behaviors, not everybody has the same lifestyle. Not everybody operates only you know, in the evenings in their house and people in especially during the pandemic like we have with we've seen very different lifestyle, and workdays come to be. So we're really well Looking at all of those things that are happening here in Ottawa, and marrying programs that make sense both from a pricing perspective, as well as energy choice. So looking at different Evie programs that we are bringing forward, looking at different energy efficiency programs that might be there and getting information into the hands of customers. In particular, there's been a lot of conversation over the last couple years, I'd say maybe a little bit more about netzero. And with the announcements the federal government, provincial, government and even municipal government have made customers are thinking about how they play in that. And there's a lot of questions and hydro Ottawa is providing information to those customers to be able to help them to be informed of what's possible, and then help give programs to get them on pathways to get there for themselves.   Dan Seguin  10:52 We are all aware that Ottawa has had some major major weather events, these past five to six years. What would you say to customers that are worried about reliability, power outages, and restoration?   Julie Lupinacci  11:10 Yeah, weather events have been tough. They're tough fun. And I don't think Ottawa has seen something like this in a very long time, like probably since the 98' Ice Storm. And I'm not even sure that really measured up to the same impact right of what we saw and what customers dealt with. But what I would, what I would say is hydro Ottawa has put a lot of focus on what we need to do from a grid perspective to adapt to the changing climate that we're seeing here in Ottawa. And that includes those weather events. Like I don't want to pretend that I know more than our chief electricity distribution officer, like I think you interviewed him maybe a couple of weeks ago. And in that podcast, he talks about what we're doing to future proof, the grid against those extreme weather events. So I'm not going to, I'm not going to try to think that I have anything more impactful that he will say on that front. But I will say that, from a front office perspective, from a customer service, from a communications perspective, we are really looking at a lot of those tools, and further modernizing them. And what I mean by that is, is taking a look at some different technology that allows us to receive more phone calls into our system, triage those phone calls, using some cloud based technology, so that not everybody is forced to talk to an individual because even at the height of the storm, like you're not going to have 10,000 people answering phone calls within a couple of minutes of a storm hitting, but we can use technology to triage to allow our customers to know that we know if they are out of power and provide them with the information that we have at that time. So looking at updating some of the telephony software that we have in utilize some of the new technology there. So we are actively working on that. The other component to communications because I think communications really is that biggest avenue for our customers especially during these winter weather events is pushing information out. And we are looking through and working on an SMS text based technology system that allows us to push information out similar to what we're pushing out through our social media channels today. Now sending that information directly to customers either on their iPhone or potentially in their email box however they want to receive those inputs and alerts from hydro Ottawa. We also took some steps to help people become aware like the weather alert, the weather system and the weather alerts that are out there giving people a heads up on systems that are coming through. Like that's, that's one thing. But I think customers want to know, when we're looking at a weather event that's different, right? You'll you'll know when rains coming into Ottawa and you'll get those alerts about snow and all of those things, but not all weather impacts our grid and what we're looking at is to be able to provide an alert system again through through whether it's SMS or an email out directly into customers inboxes so to speak, giving them a heads up when we're watching it differently right and if we're watching it differently, you know, messages are going out make sure phones are charged make sure that you've got blankets make sure you know where your your flashlights and your your candles are. So really concentrate on getting people ready for what they need to do. So there's you know, there's a few steps and you can follow us on hydro ottawa.com to get better details on that. But that's what we're doing and making sure that we're putting that out there. Additionally, we've piloted -Sorry Dan, I got one more. Additionally, we've piloted a battery program. This was used to be able to support some of our capital work. But in the recent storm this year, we use that battery pilot to be able to help some of the most vulnerable customers in Ottawa, that are really relying on electricity to be able to breathe, right and working with the paramedics hand in hand to make sure that these batteries got to those households so that they, you know, had some additional time for us to get the power back on, either to their house or to the community.   Dan Seguin  15:32 Now telling me Julie, what are some of the things customers can do to be better prepared for emergencies? And outages?   Julie Lupinacci  15:42 Yeah, so I think there's a few things that we need to do . I think we need some major awareness about what that is, like, going back to our elementary school days, when we had to plot out the fire, you know, the fire escape plan for our house, right? And go back to thinking about if there's an emergency, do we have an emergency kit together? Right? Do we have bottled water in our systems in our house? Do we have working flashlights, right? Not just flashlights that don't have batteries? But what are those batteries? And they are up to date, right? Making sure that you have them not all over the place, but you know where these flashlights are right? If anybody's like my kids, they come in, they grab the flashlights, and all of a sudden they're in different locations around the house like they need to be, your emergency kit needs to be in one central place so that you know how to get to it, whether the lights are on or off. The other piece is I would, I would make sure that you're following us on our social channels, because we do put information out there. So make sure if you haven't connected with us that you do connect with us. And you can go to our website to find out what those are, I won't, I won't run them off here. But the other piece that I would really strongly suggest is that people go and update their contact information into our database, or into our database, which will become even more crucial as we start sending these alerts and messages directly to you. Right, no longer just through social media but directly to you in your household to be able to let you know what's going. And if I could say one other thing is that I think planning based on our reliability that we've always had, and the experience that you've always had to these dates, it's no longer enough, right? Like Hydro Ottawa is going to do everything that we can to get the power back on. But you need to plan for worst case scenario, you can't plan only for the best case. So having an alternative place to go speaking with family and saying if power is out here, we're going to come over and what do we need to bring? Having those plans in place in advance makes you better equipped to withstand any weather event that comes through that may have an outage associated with it?   Dan Seguin  17:49 Okay, moving on. Hydro Ottawa released its 2021- 2025 strategic direction. Why is that five year plan important? And what are the highlights from a customer perspective that customers should be aware of? Yeah,   Julie Lupinacci  18:08 I think any organization that's not looking five years out, so it's going to be really awakened as you start to figure out what capital planning looks like. Like it doesn't take. You can't build a substation overnight. You cannot bring additional capacity into a city without some plans. And our strategic direction really helps us do that. And it helps put some guideposts in place with regards to keeping us focused, right. There's a lot of new technology that makes shiny things that people want. But really having a strategic direction that allows us to go back to what that Northstar is, what those guiding points are, what is that end goal that we're trying to get to is really important, because cities aren't planned on a dime. And neither is the grid that supports those cities. So that five year plan really looks and works with the city to say, Where are you going? How is growth happening? And then how do we support that? And then, in in line with this strategic direction, we've also taken a very, very big leadership role in in setting ourselves up for net zero and not just us as as as hydro Ottawa, but as a partner with the city of Ottawa as a integral component of the Ontario electricity grid, an integral component of the Canadian grid. And I think that comes with a responsibility to make sure that we're looking forward and making the decisions that have to happen today for some of those assets that are going to be around for that 2050 goal that Canada has. So we're really focused on maintaining the reliability that we've been seeing over the last decade. We've had great reliability here in Ottawa despite some of the storms that have happened. Our reliability numbers continue to Be strong. So making sure that we're continuing to evolve in a smart way. And making sure that we maintain that reliability in line with the growth that's happening in the city, right, where we're seeing not only expansion into some of the other, you know, we're seeing suburbs butting up against each other now, right. And, you know, I'm not even sure if there's a true delineation between Canada and Stittsville. Sometimes, because it's like a bridge, you just go over one, one street, and now you're in the different suburbs. So, that blurring that's happening is fine. So that's the growth that's happening and expanding of the city. But we're also densifying some of the downtown core areas, so we're going upwards. And that requires a different type of planning on the infrastructure that already exists. We need to grow that infrastructure, we need to change how we're adopting those arrows potentially, and then look at planning for vehicle switching from gas to EVs. Right? So the electric, the electric vehicles, how do we support that growth? How do we support some of the growth with buildings that are converting from gas to electricity, or some of the new buildings that are looking at different technology and making sure that as they're building, the capacity is there. So all of those things are aligned within that, that we have an eight point strategy that's there. And, and the customer continues to be the center of that strategy? So as we're making decisions, we're thinking of it through that customer lens? And how is the customer going to be impacted? How is the customer going to work with us, and let's make sure that we're spending money and time and focus energy on ensuring that the electricity grid is there for the needs of the future. And then the last piece that I would put is, we're really looking at streamlining processes for our customers, right, there's a lot of steps that are in place. And in some of those, those process flows, that in some cases, technology allows us to leapfrog for our customers. Many customers don't want to talk to us directly anymore. So they want to use chat functionality, or they want to just be able to go and search a Frequently Asked Questions area, or get a how to documents sent to them so that they can do it, in some cases themselves. And we are hearing that from our customers. And we are taking the steps to make sure that we streamline those processes for that,   Dan Seguin  22:25 Julie, what role does Hydro Ottawa or utilities in general have when it comes to delivering solutions for customers to reduce their consumption and greenhouse gas emissions?   Julie Lupinacci  22:38 So, I think that we have a big responsibility there to keep people informed. I think awareness is pretty key when it comes to energy efficiency. And knowing where you're starting from, I think is a big component. So as utilities, I think we need to constantly ask ourselves, where is the customer in, in their knowledge of what we're trying to get them to do or what they're needing to do or what they're wanting to do. So I would hazard a guess that not many people have a true understanding of what their carbon footprint is, I would hazard a guess that we don't all know what our emission baseline is. So asking people to do something to reduce that. And they don't know what their baseline is, I think I think that's a misstep. So utilities, in general, I think have a responsibility to help customers understand how to do that calculation. And then identify pathways and programs that they can make choices that help enrich them towards what they're trying to do. So in some cases, it's painting the picture of what that future looks like, giving them choices of what the future can look like. And then once the customer chooses that, help them to make decisions to get them closer to that. So whether that be having a digital footprint with us, right reducing the need for us to mail a bill. So they're going off of paper and onto an email bill or coming to a website to get all of the details behind their bill. I think helping them understand what that impact is, is important. Making sure that we are doing sustainable business practices for our customers is important as well, right? Like we've made different choices in our building with regards to how we process waste, how we are moving around the city, what we do, when we have trucks that may not be Eevee. There may not be an Eevee model ready for the trucks that we need. But how are we planning for that to bring in those sustainable business practices? How are we leveraging tools to be able to take not necessarily like I'm unnecessary steps out of the process, whether it be a new material that a lot, that's a more sustainable material that doesn't have us cutting down trees or others. Like I think there's some things that we are looking at that to make choices about what that what that future is going to look like. And I think the other component that we have as utilities is we need to be leaders in the field, right, we need to look at what's happening, not just here in Canada, but there are other jurisdictions around this globe that have been doing conservation because they've needed to do conservation. And and so they've, they've, I don't want to say perfected it, but they've advanced it significantly. And in some cases, we can leapfrog what their program is to an even better program with potentially new technology or even a different focus. So we're looking at, we're looking into Europe, and what are they doing with regards to conservation? What are they doing with regards to energy efficiency? And how can we take what they're doing and adopt it here. And so I think utilities have a obligation to look outside of our own four walls, look outside of our province, even look inside of our country to see what are some of those things that are working elsewhere, that can be brought here for our customers.   Dan Seguin  26:21 Now, wondering if you could outline some initiatives that hydro Auto is doing to help its customers in that area?   Julie Lupinacci  26:30 Sure, there's a whole load of ones that we can talk to, and I would encourage you to follow our blog, because we talk about a lot of those pieces and share some of those details in greater detail. And some of the case studies that we do share, may have a direct impact on some other customers. And you would see how that translates into your business or interior household. But we work very closely with the City of Ottawa on their energy evolution file. And taking a look at everything from where public EV chargers need to be set up, talking to them about how to retrofit their own buildings and be future proofed from and have a smart energy component to that, talking about how we build better communities. So we're there talking with them at the planning stages of that. So those are things that we do with the city, we are looking at distributed energy resources in a very thoughtful and deliberate way, and seeing how we can leverage some of the distributed energy resources that exist in our city today, how we align it to the grid, and how we use these distributed energy resources to bridge the evolution that's needed to be able to get to that future where the capacity need is, is maybe even three times what we're seeing today. So how are we planning for that with traditional assets? But also how can we bridge and leverage distributed energy resources that exist and will exist in our service territory? So we're doing that tons of education says, as I talked about, whether you look at our blogs, the newsletters that go out, read them, there's some really cool things and ideas that are in there for you as residential customers, and even commercial customers. We had an amazing symposium where we just started some of the conversation about what these different projects and initiatives are that we're doing with customers and can do with customers. You look at the Zibi Community, right downtown, like right behind shudder right beside sheer falls and behind the parliament. And that community itself is built completely differently, right, looking at using renewable energy, looking at using the steam off of Kruger that's just across the river, and how that heats the building and heats the community. And then looking at, you know, from an environmental footprint, what we did at a shelter falls with the eel ladder and helping with the eel migratory patterns is one element. We have a new substation in barre haven where we were very deliberate and kept a parcel of that land for a pollinator meadow. And really looking at how we promote the pollinators to be in the area that helped that particular growth. And then a number of conservation programs that we're working with with either the ISO which is our Independent Electricity System, distributor, or off operator and working with them and the Ministry of Energy on here are some programs that we see that can help bridge a defer capital investments because the capacity is here and we're sharing the capacity a little bit different, and even encouraged people to conserve energy, you know, not leaving their lights on not leaving motors running, generators, running, and all kinds of different programs that we can look at from that perspective. So lots of pilots, lots of different programs that are in flight and pilots to come.   Dan Seguin  29:59 What new and innovative plans are you making for the short, mid and long term when it comes to customers? And what hydro Ottawa offers?   Julie Lupinacci  30:12 Yeah, so I think I mentioned our, our battery loan program, you know that that was a one that we had thought would be a one and done type of thing during, during the early days of the pandemic. And the results that we saw on that program just made it one that we don't see going away anymore. So looking at continuing to evolve that program and scale it up. So I think that would be, you know, a short term. One. Another short term one is some of the Eevee programs that we're working on, that are coming to market with regards to being able to not only see where the EVs are coming up, but predict where the next EVs are going to be coming in. And even having a bit of a different relationship with those Eevee owners. So some type of a demand response program, you'll see that too short to mid term. With regards to helping customers understand that if they defer or delay charging their car until the evening, there might be a cost benefit, but also some benefit to us overall. So I think you'll see a lot of those kinds of demand response pilots to really see how and what we need to do, and engage our community and help us get there, right? We can't do this as single, single folks, we need to do this as a full community looking towards that future. And long term, I think you'll see some of those continuing to innovate. With regards to just building smarter communities, renewables within communities, you'll look at a different way of doing some substation work, and bringing that power here into the city of Ottawa.   Dan Seguin  31:51 Now, in 2021, hydro Ottawa announced that it will achieve Net Zero operations by 2030. How will this help or improve the lives of Ottawa residents?   Julie Lupinacci  32:04 It's a very philosophical question in some cases, because I think there's still a lot of misconception or confusion around what net zero means, right? And people think that going to net zero means there's no emissions. And that's not true. Net Zero means that we are becoming carbon neutral or emission neutral. So we may emit some emissions on one side of the business. But we're, we're offsetting in another area. So I think, I think it's a few different things. I think it gets us off thinking in a very different way. It helps to stimulate a conversation that is much needed to be able to advance. And I think we have a corporate responsibility to move that forward here within the City of Ottawa, especially being the capital of Ottawa, when you have your Prime Ministers sit up there and say, we're going to be net zero by 2050. And nobody moves until 2049. It's not going to work great. So people need to move early. And I think hydro Ottawa has demonstrated a lot of those advancements towards this net zero operations even in advance of, of when we announced it, right, like a lot of some of what we were doing a lot of what we were doing sorry, was really in play before that we had a very different way of building our our generation downtown Ottawa and we took the environment into account, we took a very accountable, measured approach to how we were doing our development and you're gonna see that continue in what we do. As we build substations, how do we do that to make sure that we have the least impact on the environment, and that we leave the space that we're in as good or better is really what we're trying to do than that have been when we got there, I look at the the Cambrian substation and bar Haven, and it is better than when we put our plant there because we have a pollinator meadow that's very deliberate, and what we're doing, we're taking care of the lands that are that are there, and you're gonna see that happen throughout. And it's all in for that larger view. With regards to Ottawa residents, I think it's important for them to know that they have a utility provider that cares about that as much as they do. And that are putting very thoughtful approach to how we go about doing things and we're not just doing it for the sake of doing it it means something this last spring, although small, in its in its in its infancy and I see it growing you know, we we planted trees, as part of our employees as part of their volunteer day that they get with the company went out into community and planted trees in an area that was where they were much needed. So I think you'll see a lot of those types of initiatives all happening within the city and with our company.   Dan Seguin  35:04 Julie, is this what customers expect from a modern utility? What other ways is hydro Ottawa innovating?   Julie Lupinacci  35:14 Yeah, I think expectations on on utilities as well as most organizations is changing significantly, customers are wanting organizations, corporations to not just be good corporate citizens, but to be accountable for the decisions and the activities that they do to be transparent, and why we're making those decisions, and how we're making those decisions. So when we talk about bringing in renewables, when we talk about being ready for electric vehicles, when we talk about bringing an energy management expertise into the area, it's it's really meant to make sure that customers have the information that they're already asking for, and that they're having information from a somewhat neutral party, right. In some cases, we're not looking at pushing one way or another, but making sure that people are informed to make the best decisions, and know what the outcomes are. And I think we're uniquely positioned to do that. There's a lot of people that might sell renewables, and they help install solar panels. And we're not looking to replace any of those, those people like it takes all kinds to make these things, all kinds of components in the supply chain to make this come to reality. But I think there is a natural space for hydro Ottawa to be there to help inform customers on how to do this effectively, what this means to them, like adding solar panels to your rooftop has complications. And it also has implications for you as a homeowner. And I think it's important that people be informed as they're making those decisions to put two and two together so that they don't, later on, find out that, you know, use this example, they bought an Eevee. And they bring it home, and they have nowhere to plug it in. Because their condo Corporation isn't set up effectively. There's nowhere for them to do public charging systems, I think that we need to make sure that we're helping customers make those informed decisions, and how we can do that together. So things around, like you mentioned, cybersecurity, and energy management, one of our conversations, and we're getting in, we're playing a big role in that, like, I think if we would be naive to think that customers don't expect us to have some of the best cybersecurity programs in place we are, are the custodians of the network that makes sure that they have energy to run their lives and electricity to run their lives. And I mentioned at the beginning of this, that some people count on that to stay alive. So that is of utmost importance, and a certainty that we need to play a space in that. And then energy management, like who you turn to other than somebody is really accountable to make sure that energy comes to your house, to be able to provide that expertise and help you through that and guide you through that process.   Dan Seguin  38:19 Now, what are some community carbon reduction projects that hydro Ottawa has been involved in, that customers might not be aware of?   Julie Lupinacci  38:29 Yeah, so hydro Ottawa has been working with the city and a lot of customers around the Ottawa area to be able to help them bring some of the carbon reduction projects that they have to life and to reality. So one of the big ones that I think maybe will touch everybody in the city of Ottawa is streetlight conversions. So we converted them all the street lights to LEDs, so that provided a significant cost savings to the City of Ottawa with regards to their energy bill, but in most cases provided better lighting, to the city streets, and has an element of controls in those lights to be able to allow the city to turn them up or down depending right so there's some technology that's built into those city lights, and all done through cost savings to the to the city overall. So I think that that was a big one that folks may not know about. We have been working with the city on their electric buses and bringing that vision to fruition. Electric buses, although we're not in the bus business, we are in the business now to support getting electricity to those buses and to where they need it and planning where those bus resting stations are to recharge, making sure there's enough in electricity capacity going into the main headquarters where the buses park at night, do their maintenance, make sure that they get charged up for the routes and working to make sure that they have everything there at To add a Edie, affordable process for the city, right, making sure that we're looking at, at this model that we worked on with the city to make sure that hydro water was working and supporting everything up to that charger. And the city's buses are running the routes, but we're, you know, we're staying in our lanes with regards to core competency, but making sure that we're bringing that vision to reality. And we're doing that same thing with the airport. No, we're not in the flight business. But we are in the business of making sure that as airports, specifically the airport here in Ottawa, are looking at electrifying everything under the wing, making sure doing fuel switching even in their passenger terminals. So you know, look at lighting solutions all across, whether it's, you know, the parking garage or in the building, you know, working with the report on helping them get to their net zero commitments, and making sure that we have the expertise brought in. Sometimes it comes with, you know, understanding what different programs are out there and marrying those up. And we do that. And then the last one, I think we've been working with some customers like the airport, so the airport's not a standalone, customer story. We've got a number of those stories that we're working with customers to do. We're working with Ottawa police services to be able to help look at their fleets and how do you support moving, moving their fleets to electric vehicles and other other customers that are like that? And then looking and working with the City of Ottawa on public charging stations? Where would these be, you know, our new mayor, as part of his campaign talked about public charging stations talked about ebike charging stations, and we're working hand in hand with them to help bring those visions and those plans to reality that is not just to talk, but it is bringing those projects to life.   Dan Seguin  41:59 Okay, Julie, let's rewind and go back to the strategic plan. What are the key change drivers that are influencing hydro Ottawa is future planning.   Julie Lupinacci  42:10 So we've used a five-d framework in our strategic direction, because these are the drivers that are not just impacting our industry, but they're impacting everybody. And they're, they're things that are happening, and you'd have to understand what it is and then look at your own business and then how you support customers. So the customers need to be aware as well. So we're really looking at these five days. So the first one is decarbonisation. You know, I think we've had a lot of that conversation so far. It needs to be part of our programs, it needs to be part of our future design, it needs to be part of our discussions with customers. The second one is digitization. And this one has been around for a while, right, like people have been migrating to, to using electronics, like E bills, emails versus you know, getting your your bill in the mail, paying through through some type of paper pay service versus sending in a check, or coming in to drop off money at hydro. We haven't done that for a while. But those are pathways to this digitization. And I would say it's going further than that. We're looking at how to make sure that customers have access to their data through a digital output? How can they connect their systems to that to make some decisions for them? So digitization is a big one for us. Not just on the customer front? I would say how we're developing our systems as well. Decentralization is one of those third G's that people are looking at. And I always laugh because industries go through centralization, decentralization. It's kind of a little bit of a flux piece that happens. But we are in a decentralization component because they think the reality of an Ottawa is in the ecosystem that we have. It's a pretty vast city, like, you know, from a miles long miles wide component. It's vast. It's not as big as some of the service territories that you know, like Hydro Quebec takes care of the entire province. But it's vast enough that you would think why are we decentralizing? But there's the reality of things like the storm that bring it to light that you need some loops within the system that are centered around where people are living and making sure that we can have some redundancy in different areas. So we are looking at that. And what we do is diversification diversifying. Like we talked about overhead underground a lot this year, especially after the storms. That's one form of diversification. But there's also looking at how do you incorporate renewables? It's a different type of energy production. How do you incorporate solar in a different way in a very thoughtful way and I can be stressed enough because you can't just put solar across the entire city and think that that's going to work right, you need to be able to integrate those pieces, right? If you want that energy future, you have to integrate solar into the existing grid, and look at how we do this as a community based component. So diversification is definitely leading a lot of discussions here. And what we do, and the last one is demographics that the city is changing. You know, we used to be English, French only, we have different languages that are coming to be so that, you know, like, that's the basics of it. But also taking a look at the changing demographics of the workplace, the changing demographics of where people are working, and how people are working, like demographics is a little bit different. Right? There's, you know, there's a socio graphic component to that, or a psycho psychographic component that comes into that as well, that we're looking at how we speak to customers? How do we make sure that they have information? What are we making sure that we're doing when we plan work, right? Like we have to do maintenance on our system? How do we do that support, support our customers, so all five of those DS, really our part of how we evaluate the work of the projects that we get involved in?   Dan Seguin  46:18 What has been the impact of the pandemic on electricity customers, and how has that influenced your role, and also hydro Auto has relationship with its customers,   Julie Lupinacci  46:30 The pandemic has, I think, thrown a very different work life reality here. Ottawa, for the most part, did not see the unemployment rates as some of the other cities across Canada. So in some cases, we've been fortunate, but the impacts are still there. So for the utility, and I talked about it in the previous question a little bit, but for the utility, how we go about doing our work matters more. Now, I would say, you know, coming through the pandemic, it matters more, because when we used to plan work on our grid, we used to plan it during the day. So we would go into a community. And we would know that the bulk of the customers in that community were at work between nine and five, let's say or nine and three. And we could get a lot of work done without really impacting customers. And now, it's not like those homes have become daycares, not just during the pandemic, but as a, as a perpetual thing. Now, right, we've got hybrid work components, so you can't decide that this or you can't even hazard an educated guess that this community is going to be predominantly out between these hours on this day, like that just doesn't, that doesn't happen anymore. So working with customers and giving them more advanced notice, in some cases, more, making sure that they get this information in a timely manner so that they can plan around it the same way that we're planning is super critical. And I would say that, ultimately, the biggest change that we've seen with our customers is making sure that we can continue to do the work with the least impact to our customers. And I think that's why we talked about the battery loan program. That's why it's become such an important piece of the future that our customers will not be able to give it to everybody. But you know, at least it's a program that will kind of look at how we can evolve and be able to support our customers through those types.   Dan Seguin  48:41 Okay, Julie, we always end our interviews with some rapid fire questions, and we've got some for you. Are you ready?   Julie Lupinacci  48:50 I am. Okay, Julie,   Dan Seguin  48:52 What are you reading right now?   Julie Lupinacci  48:53 I'm actually reading two books right now. One is called Ed Mylett The Power of One More, which is a pretty inspirational story that was based on his father just doing one more thing. One more minute talking to a customer reaching out to one more customer. It's kind of a really cool dynamic when you pull it into a workspace, and the other one is Brene Brown's Atlas of the Heart. I'm reading that as part of our we had a lot of conversations about crisis, communication and emotion and Atlas of the heart was one of those recommendations. So I have taken her up on that.   Dan Seguin  49:27 Now, what would you name your boat? If you had one?   Julie Lupinacci  49:32 Yeah, I don't know if I thought this one 100% through but I think I would say Unstoppable. Maybe Unsinkable Boat.   Dan Seguin  49:43 Okay, let's move on to the next one. Who is someone that you admire?   Julie Lupinacci  49:46 That so many people to choose from? But here I'd say my mom, she's a powerhouse. She's mastered the balance of staying calm, and keeping calm even in the craziness of the chaos. She has that ability to fight kind of to find a path forward for people and during insanely stressful situations, so she like, reaches down and likes to pick people up gently, sometimes sometimes not so gently, and gives you a good kick in the butt, you know, to get you into overdrive when needed. So if I could, if I could garner some of that into who I am, I think I think that would be amazing.   Dan Seguin  50:21 Okay, what is the closest thing to real magic that you've witnessed?   Julie Lupinacci  50:27 Yeah, this is, this is a hard one for me to put into words. But let me see if I can take, again, the chaos of some of these weather events that we've seen, like I've witnessed our team go from full throttle heads down, like almost militant robotic work mode, trying to get the power back on. And they can stop in those tracks and become this completely empathetic supportive, human being to some of the most vulnerable people that they they encounter, whether it be somebody who they see is needing help to shovel their driveway because they're struggling or, you know, a child comes up to them with a with a bunch of cards to give to hydro auto, because they're their classmates made them in in class, and they want to give them to them. And they're right, coming up right to a workstation, like I see this switch happen on a dime. And in my opinion, it's so magical. So I guess in my opinion, that would be pure via pure magic moment.   Dan Seguin  51:28 Okay, next one here, what has been the biggest challenge to you personally, since the pandemic began?   Julie Lupinacci  51:35 Yeah, as a single parent, I think it's easy for me to say something like anytime the schools were doing virtual learning and trying to juggle, juggle all of you know, work. Being a teacher is the hardest job in the world. Especially in some of those, with with some of those kids that just can't sit still, which is, which is my son. But I would have to say the hardest part, for me, has been witnessing folks who are struggling, trying to get back on their feet, whether that be financially, but more so I would say struggling to get back on their feet mentally coming out of the pandemic. Okay,   Dan Seguin  52:13 moving on. We've all been watching a lot of Netflix and TV. What are your favorite movies or shows?   Julie Lupinacci  52:23 It's funny because I saw this. And I would say, yes, that's a true statement. But I haven't been watching a lot of Netflix and TV, but my family Friday Night Movie go twos, these last few weeks has been the Home Alone series. And I don't know why. Coming up to Christmas. I guess that's what it is. But home alone has been the movie. I think we're up to the third one or fourth one now at our Friday movie nights.   Dan Seguin  52:47 Lastly, what's exciting you about your industry, our industry right now?   Julie Lupinacci  52:53 Oh, geez, what's not exciting. We're I think we're in a pivotal moment and the energy industry, like a kind of table clearing moment when we're working across boundaries, like I'm talking about physical boundaries, cross fuel providers cross. The local distributor companies talking together across energy providers, you know, private, public energy providers have all kinds of different solutions out there. Everybody's at this table working to develop solutions. It's such an exciting time, because it's the egos in some cases get completely put outside and just really focused on the same goal on trying to get us to that smart, sustainable, affordable energy future. And to me, that is absolutely the most exciting part of our industry right now. Well, Julie,   Dan Seguin  53:41 we've reached the end of another episode of The thinkenergy podcast. If our listeners wanted to learn more about you and our organization, how could they connect?   Julie Lupinacci  53:54 So I am on LinkedIn. So you can find me Julie Lupinacci at LinkedIn, or you can connect right through our website. So if you send something through there, saying you want to talk to me, it'll find its way to me directly.   Dan Seguin  54:08 Again, Julie, thank you so much for joining me today. I hope you had a lot of fun.   Julie Lupinacci  54:12 I did.   Dan Seguin  54:14 Thanks for tuning in for another episode of The think energy podcast. Don't forget to subscribe and leave us a review wherever you're listening. And to find out more about today's guests or previous episodes, visit thinkenergypodcast.com And I hope you'll join us again next time as we spark even more conversations about the energy of tomorrow.  

That’s Brilliant!
Black, Brown or Navy?

That’s Brilliant!

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 29, 2022 28:53


When was the last time you thought about the lighting in your closet? Today is the day! Jeff Dross (LightingByJeffery.com) will take us through the many considerations for this small space.   Show notes Jeffrey R Dross has been involved in the residential lighting industry for over 45 years. He has engineered products, managed the development of different lighting types, educated the industry about lighting and its use, helped designers comprehend the power of lighting and designed lighting installation in a variety of residential spaces. Visit his site for a great blog, and more about his design services.   Jeffrey talks about CRI.  Terry McGowan, ALA's resident engineer, says: Color Rendering Index is a measure of how well people or things look when lighted by a particular light source compared to how they look when lighted by incandescent bulbs. The scale used for CRI is 0-100 where 100 is a perfect color match. The higher the CRI; the better (more natural) people and things will look. For residential lighting, use LED light sources with CRI ratings of 90 and above. From a practical standpoint, most LEDs (even the ones with poor color rendering) usually have a CRI of 70 or more.   If you want to really geek out about CRI, you can do that, too. Visit ALAMembers.com for more information about the American Lighting Association and membership. ALALighting.com has lighting tips and inspiration, and a listing of ALA-member showrooms.   Contest for folks who read the show notes: Be one of the first three respondents to give a coherent summary of CRI, and you'll win a prize.  Mostly bragging rights, but also a little prize.  Enter at Podcast@ALALighting.com.   Raelle Bell – Host Liz Ware – Host Association Briefings - Producer

Get A Grip On Lighting Podcast
Episode 374: #289 - In the Sweet Spot

Get A Grip On Lighting Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 28, 2022 54:15


This one is so packed that we are already planning part 2.  Pieter and Mike are taking Seaborough from a purely R & D company to more of a business partner with the lighting industry.  If you're a manufacturer, you might want to consider becoming one of those partners when you hear about their innovative LED technology.  Dr. Mike Krames has been working in LED for 30 years and as he says, he was laughed at in the beginning. No one's laughing now.Pieter Six is well versed in the world of lighting and is passionate about the development and disruption of new lighting innovations. Before joining Seaborough in 2020 as CEO, he worked as Chief Commercial Officer for Ellipz Smart Solutions, a scale-up company in the field of data communication via light (LiFi).Dr. Mike Krames has more than 25 years of materials, device, and applications experience, with emphasis on solid-state lighting devices and products, including advancing the performance and color quality of LEDs for general illumination.

The Gravel Ride.  A cycling podcast
Matt Conte -Outbound Lighting

The Gravel Ride. A cycling podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 23, 2022 48:16


This week we sit down with Matt Conte, Co-Founder of Outbound Lighting. Matt discusses the origin story of the business and details the benefits of Outbound's approach to lighting (hint: it has its origins in the automotive world). Outbound Lighting Support the Podcast Join The Ridership  Automated Transcription, please excuse the typos: Outbound Lighting [00:00:00] Craig Dalton: Hello, and welcome to the gravel ride podcast, where we go deep on the sport of gravel cycling through in-depth interviews with product designers, event organizers and athletes. Who are pioneering the sport I'm your host, Craig Dalton, a lifelong cyclist who discovered gravel cycling back in 2016 and made all the mistakes you don't need to make. I approach each episode as a beginner down, unlock all the knowledge you need to become a great gravel cyclist. This week on the show, we welcome Matt Conti, one of the founders of outbound lighting. You may remember outbound from a number of years ago when they originally launched the company via Kickstarter project. I, for one, pay a lot of attention to Kickstarter cycling projects. For some reason, I'm a sucker for them, and I was sort of curious, you know, with so many industry stalwarts in the lighting business, how this company was gonna make a mark. Well, they successfully funded the campaign and have successfully built a. Manufacturing in the United States, which is absolutely amazing. But what was equally amazing was Matt's description of the technology that he applied to the bicycle lighting industry. He came from automotive lighting and had a lot of, advanced engineering skills specific to how to light the world in front of you at night. And it was fascinating to just hear his take on the existing bicycle light in. Further how he evolved the very specific lighting options that outbound uses and offers customers. Today I've been using their helmet mounted light as well as their bar mounted light and definitely appreciate a number of things about the design that Matt will get into you for you during this episode. So I hope you enjoy it. And just a quick note, I apologize. A little bit of sporadic release of episodes these days. I've been traveling and had a ton on my plate, and it's been a real struggle to get to the editing and everything else involved in the podcast, so I appreciate your patience. There certainly will be another couple weeks towards the end of the year where I take off just to decompress, but look forward to getting many, many more great episodes out the door to you in the coming year. With that said, let's jump right into my conversation with Matt. Matt, welcome to the show. [00:02:16] Matt Conte: Hey, glad pleasure to be here. I'm [00:02:19] Craig Dalton: excited to dig in and learn a little bit more about outbound lighting. Why don't we start by just letting the listeners know where you are in the world, and then let's talk about what led to you starting outbound light lighting in the first place. [00:02:32] Matt Conte: Yeah, so we are located in just north of Chicago, Illinois in Skokie, just kind of a middle suburb and stuff. And then we got Tom, my co-owner. He's out in Olympia, Washington. Kind of the Mecca Mountain biking out there for him. Couldn't convince him to move to the city, unfortunately, but yeah, so we are, we got our headquarters here. It's where we design, assemble, ship, every bike light that we make. And yeah, I guess from like far as what got us to start this company like you sort of mentions that kind of interestingly, like I'm not that kind of guy who. Hardcore biker who saw an opportunity to make something. I came from the automotive lighting ex world. Used to design l e d headlights, off road lights stuff like that, like Baja trucks and things like that. And I was really into rally car racing where you're on gravel roads, slinging cars, and a hundred miles an hour at night through the woods to blast. But at the time I was kind of looking to how. Basically branch out and take my experience from developing lighting products to something else. I just kind of wanted to do my own thing. And so I looked at experimental aircraft. I looked at exterior architectural lighting and all that kind of stuff. And wasn't until a friend of mine posted on Facebook basically a selfie of him writing at night Asia being like, Oh yeah, I heard night riding. And I was like, Huh, that's. You got a couple headlights on your bike, like what is that? Like, what are you using? And oh, I got the night rider, 1800 pros, the best light out there, all that kind of stuff. And I looked it up and it was like 350 bucks and I was like, it's a flashlight. And talked to him for a bit, kind of like, Hey, can I come over and check this thing out? Kind of seems like this is possibly an opportunity to take what we, what I've done in the automotive space and bring it to bikes. And so yeah, he took me out on a ride and I enjoyed it. Had a lot of fun and kind of was like, Yeah, I could definitely do way better than this. And from there I designed a prototype gave it to him. He liked it, loved it. Ran a Kickstarter campaign, was able to wait enough money to pay for the initial tool in the product, and bought a bing, bought a boom. Five years later. Here we are and we've now got three different products. We've gone through a couple iterations of stuff and yeah, now the goal is basically just continue to build the best bike lights that we can using all of the experience that I used to have from the automotive sector. Interesting. [00:04:50] Craig Dalton: So that was, that goes back to, was it 2017 for that original Kickstarter [00:04:54] Matt Conte: project? Yeah, just about I think I was starting to kick the idea around like 2016 or so. And then, They drew out some sketches, made some models pro, pretty printed a bunch of stuff, and I was doing this all like after hours from my normal job. Kind of trying to keep those two things completely separate. And yeah, so it was about a six months, eight months of just prototyping, validating, doing a bunch of stuff until it was like, All right, we've got something that looks production enough. Let's make a Kickstarter campaign and let's see what happens. I kind of use that as sort of that litmus test of either all my friends and family are wrong and it's not really a great product, or we do have something that other people who are outside of our little in sphere of influence actually find useful and want to have and all that kind of stuff. So that was kind of my testing ground just to see if this is what people wanted and turns out enough people wanted it that we were able to get that started and into production and all that kind of. That's [00:05:53] Craig Dalton: such an interesting kind of validating ground for new products Kickstarter. It's, it's got both incredible advantages, but also risks in terms of like getting, getting your fundraising across the finish line, et cetera. [00:06:07] Matt Conte: Yeah, it's certainly not as good as it used to be. Like I feel like Kickstarter usefulness, we were on the tail end of it. Not as ma a lot of people have been burned in the past by products that just never came to market, all that kind of stuff, and. It was kind of a challenge to like advertise and get the word out that this is what we're doing. And it's even harder nowadays. I think Kickstart has sort of pivoted their entire model away from my products to artists and creators and games and all that kind of stuff. So yeah, it's certainly not as, not as good as it used to be but it's definitely one of the best spots to kind of figure. Is this what people want? Yeah. And it's sort of a low cost, low risk kind of method before you go and dump two 50, $60,000 worth of tooling just to find out that you don't have a market, which I'm sure some people have done that, unfortunately, but that's. The way it goes. [00:06:58] Craig Dalton: I do remember when the product came to market on Kickstarter, simply because I sort of follow Kickstarter and certainly bike projects on Kickstarter with a lot of interest. And it had me thinking about the sort of decades of bike lights that I have experienced or have in the garage dating back to when you used to have the battery in your water bottle cage. Attached by a wire to your headlight and if you could get 250 lumens out of that setup, it was sort of miraculous. Yeah. And then I remember the sort of escalation of lumens being the sort of main driver of innovation. Like the, the form factors weren't changing too much. I just kept seeing this escalation of lighting power so much so that you know, when you got up to even north of 500, 600 lumen. You were getting outshined from behind. If the person behind you had a brighter light than you, it created this weird shadow, and it was worse than having your own light on the bike because they were so powerful behind you. And I think we'll get into this a little bit, but they were very sort of flashlight like and very directional in their beams. So it's, it's interesting and I wanna get into it for sure, your form factor and how that evolved. But let's, let's start what, you mentioned that you had a cyclic fr cycling front. You kind of showed you his lights that were state of the art at that moment in time. What did you see in that light that, given your experience in the automotive industry, you felt was, you know, dramatic shortcoming and the thing you could improve upon very easily? [00:08:32] Matt Conte: Yeah, definitely. So the first thing that. I kind of noticed just because a lot of the bike lights were kind of similar to sort of like the cheap off-road lights that I'd see in the automotive side where it was basically just an l e d sitting inside of a reflect bowl. It's kind of your most common, typical. Standard flashlight type of optic. And the problem with that is that gives you one pattern. It's just gonna be a straight up circle. You're gonna have a tight hotpot from where all of the light was bouncing off through a reflector size and concentrating on the middle. And then you're gonna have like a secondary ring of all the spill light coming straight from the l e d. So you end up. A very concentrated hotspot, an outer sort of just dimmer ring, and then a hard, sharp edge around the outside. And that's sort of what creates that sort of tunnel vision effect, like when you're riding quickly with behind one of those kind of lights. Basically we have not done that in the automotive sector since the sixties. We've all been shaped light with lots of, I mean, if you look at any headlight on a car anywhere the ones that are super basic with just a reflective, even like the old hoens, they're all segment reflectors and they're all doing very little things to redirect the light into certain. Because the automotive lighting inject is so heavily regulated. You have lighting targets that you have to hit, you have to get a certain amount of light at zero degrees, zero left and right, and zero degrees up and down. Like it has to be a hundred. I'm thinking off the top of my head, like 200 Ls or something like that, but then off to the left by 15 degrees up, five degrees down, you have to have a certain amount of Candela requirements to legally sell a vehicle. So the D o T and all that kind of stuff have set up basically all these lighting standards for high beam, low beam turn signals, brake lights, every kind of lighting you can think of. It's been standardized for targets, but in the bike lighting world, Especially offroad kind of step, especially in the US It's kind of very interesting how Europe and US are completely segmented. We can get into that later, but in the US there's absolutely no targets. There's no requirements. So the goal there was always just build a brighter looking light. Not always necessarily make it more useful. And I kind of feel like that segment was always so small and niche. Nobody was taking the advanced software packages that we use in the automotive side to bikes because I have personally designed reflectors and stuff for clients and things like that, and it gets expensive really quick. The software package that we use costs 25 to $30,000 a year just to license because it's such a niche automotive specific lighting package. There's only maybe 50 companies in the world that are using it. But it is what lets us redirect and shape light the way it is. And so when I rode with those older night Rider lights, and I, I don't want to call 'em out specifically cuz pretty much every brand is almost the same. That kind of what I noticed that these were all just flashlights. They were the same beam patterns that you would expect. From a flashlight that you're gonna use around your house, walking down the woods and all that kind of stuff. And I saw that opportunity to basically be like, All right, let me sit here as a driver. Not so much a writer, but like, how do I, how would I approach this problem if I was doing this from an automotive perspective? I could, Okay, I'm gonna be my eyesight eyelines here. My lights mounted two and a half feet below me. Six inches in front. Okay. I know that I want to be able to see with a reaction time of 10 seconds while riding at 35 miles an hour, the fastest, like super fast downhill. I know that I need I know that in order to recognize an object, you need three to five looks of light. Okay? If I know I'm doing 35 miles an hour. And I want 10 seconds, I can figure out that distance that I need to have something illuminated with three to five lus and then backtrack that to figure out how much cannella that I need. And that sets my minimum target in the center. And then basically I can then shape the beam pattern so that we hit that minimum target so it feels bright enough. And then we take all the other lumens that we have and kind of spread that around so that we build essentially a wall of light. Which is exactly how we do it in the automotive sector. A lot of fine tuning and figuring out what targets we wanna hit at what beam angles. All right, let's go into our software programs. Let's spend a couple weeks iterating, optimizing, simulating all these different types of beam patterns. Tweaking, reflect your facets individually until we get what we feel is inappropriate beam powdering for that Pacific type of light. Then we can prototype it. Test. Make changes. It's a very iterative process there. But yeah, it was pretty much that first night ride that I had was very eye-opening as far as, yeah, like if this is the best we can do so much better. And there's so much more opportunity to develop good lighting, utilizing the automotive sector and bring it to bikes rather than being just another bike and enthusiast who's putting together a really bright l e. Into an off the shelf reflector and calling it a bike light kind of thing. So, that's kind of how I see like our paths to arriving here being a little bit different than other companies especially in the logging space. But it does seem like a lot of biking companies start from bike and enthusiast, which obviously that makes sense. And so that's kind of how we arrived to that point and got. Yeah, it's super [00:14:12] Craig Dalton: interesting taking it with a kind of first principal's fresh eyes look and taking what you learned in the automotive industry. You know, one of the, the sort of hallmarks of the outbound lighting visual is it's sort of wider. You know, you think of a lot of these lights and they're, you know, essentially akin to a flashlight or circular or just square light right in the center kicking out a lot of lumens. As you just described, the outbound lighting profile is quite a bit wider. What do you do with that extra space? You mentioned how you sort of can really fine tune where you want the, the extra lumens to go to, et cetera. What are you doing across that big visual front plate of lights? [00:14:51] Matt Conte: Yeah, so that's also kind of playing into the whole like physiological way that our eyes respond to light. Our eyes prefer very. Evenly lit spaces as you can kind of imagine, like when you're riding in, driving in a tunnel and you come outta the tunnel and you get that like big flash of brightness, how it takes a little bit for your eyes to like auto expose. I guess like from a camera perspective. The same thing happens when you're riding a night. If you're riding behind a light that's like very bright, the center and has harsh edges, when that light is moving around, like your eyes are constantly trying to balance. This bright object moving around in front of you versus when you have a very wide even beam pattern, it feels a lot more like daylight. And that's kind of like why we feel so comfortable right around in the day because everything is evenly lit from, not only from like where you're trying to look, but also all the ground in front of you from like where you're looking all the way out to the front of your tire. And so that is definitely like one of the biggest challenges. And as far as like developing an optic. Is to set up the, the beam, and again, the, the surfaces on these things have to be so precise. The tooling for them is very expensive, but it's part of like, why it's so good. Basically what we're doing after we set that target hotspot that we want to hit, then like you said, we're taking all that extra lumens and stuff. And then first of all, I'm trying to like make the lighting from the, where you're looking all the way to the front of your. As evenly as even as possible on the ground. So I'm able to basically set up like a sensor plane in my software for brightness and then set up like a driver perspective, or in this case a writer perspective. But since we use an automotive software, we're always using driver. So I set that up and then basically I'm able to like do cross sectional curves and make sure that we don't have any like weird ripples or really. Peaks which you can kind of see if you study a lot of different beam pattern all over the spectrum from like the cheapest lights to the most expensive lights. You'll see, like there's blotchy areas where lights just gets a little bit more concentrated. You might not notice it, but isn't until someone like me points it out kind of thing. But it's a really, really tough job to try and do that. And that's sort of like where I find the value in the software that we. To be so valuable because yeah, once we set like the ground plane to be evenly lit from the front of your tire all the way out you're looking, then that's where I try to expand the width and then more importantly, try to taper the brightness so that it's, you get all this peripheral spill light to decide that never shows up in pictures, never shows up in video because it's just so. That camera sensors can't really pick it up unless you start pull a Photoshop and brightening stuff and all that kind of stuff. But our eyes are incredibly sensitive optical in instruments, so our eyes start to pick this stuff up and then from the very outside corners, I very progressively try to ramp up that brightness to the center so it feels very smooth and progressive. And that's sort of one of those things. . That's why like when you shine one of our lights, like against the garage wall or the back wall, it's not gonna seem as bright compared to some other lights because we spread it out so much. But it is one of those things like once you're on a trail, on a road pitch dark, and you turn on our step and you give your eyes a few minutes to adjust, and it's one of those things that people just never wanna go back to another type of light. And it really is all those little. Details and days of simulating and tweaking and simulating and tweaking, and simulating, tweaking over and over and over that it really pays off. And I'm pretty sure that, I mean, I notice kind of like why our lives have been so well received. It's a, yeah, it's, it's something that no one else has really done before. Because it is a very expensive it of process that if you try to hire that out to somebody, . Like you have to give them the targets. You have to say, I wanted to be this bright, I've got this much light I can do, make it work and that, and I'll give you 10 or $15,000. And that guy's gonna do two days, three days worth of work and be like, Oh, here you go. Versus like us, we're obsessive about it. I've been up till two or three in the morning just simulating, tweaking. Cuz every time I simulate I'm like, All right, I'm gonna let this simulate. I'm gonna go to bed and be. Wait five minutes, like, Oh, but I'm so close. Let me tweak this again. And Right another five minutes, ah, if I just move this another degree to the left, it'll be all right. And then boom, three o'clock in the morning. And my wife's wondering why I'm not in bed yet. It's, it's that kind of obsession with lighting is like, it's why I enjoy what we do. I love what we're doing, making lights and all that kind of stuff. And I think that really shows in the products. And customer. Yeah, [00:19:39] Craig Dalton: there's a lot of, there's a lot of detail we can get into on the lights. So after the Kickstarter project goes off, you've, you've amassed a little bit of capital to presumably pay for some tooling and get some of the basic products off the ground. What was your vision for how you would, you would assemble the product? Where are the components coming from and did that change from the original Kickstarter first version to, to what you guys are doing now? [00:20:02] Matt Conte: Yeah, so. At first, like the previous company I was at before, we did a lot of stuff overseas. Just cause like the tooling's cheap, all that kind of stuff. And so initially, like after we ran the Kickstarter, we raised like 30 grand. I still needed like another 40, so I ended up getting a home equity line of credit against our house at the time. So I was literally betting the house on this working. Thankfully it did but. It was one of those things where I wanted to work with domestic tooling companies and all that kind of stuff. But the problem is, is that you need a lot of scale. So these guys usually don't even wanna like start talking to you until you're doing like 5,000 units, 10,000 units. At the time I needed 500. I just needed enough to get going. So in order to get the company off the ground, we had to go overseas as far as like getting the tooling going because they'll do the tooling cheap and they'll do it with low minimum quantities, cuz all they really care about is the tooling. While domestic suppliers are more for the recurring orders that come in every day or every quarter or whatever. And so we were able to get stuff started and make the initial shipments and all that kind of stuff. And the tooling, all the tooling was done overseas. The PCBs the actual printed circuit boards and the assembly was done still stateside. At the time I was using a company out in Kansas City. We've always kept the electronics state side because that's, that's the part of developing these products. Needs a lot of hands on experience and needs a lot of like quick turn reaction parts will be out of stock and alright, quickly we gotta find another resistor that can drop into this and all that kind of stuff. And that's where you need that good kind of communication lanes which don't always get going overseas, but when it comes to like a rubber strap or just a guy cast piece, like yeah, you can go overseas and do that kind of stuff. My goal was always to try and build the company up to the scale that we could do more domestic manufacturing. And we finally have kind of reached that point where we're building 10,000 EVAs this year, well, I think we did about eight or 10,000 this year. And once you get to about six to eight to 10,000 units per year, that's when domestic manufacturing makes a lot of sense. Not just from, but the tooling's gonna be more expensive. The lead time's a little bit longer, but the per unit cost is gonna be a little bit cheaper. And more importantly, you're gonna save a ton on shipping shipping, tariffs, all that kind of stuff. And so, as well as just being able to quickly react to different changes and things like that. So we now have a fantastic supplier out in Michigan. They, they do automotive components as their bread and butter, but they also like working with small manufacturers like ourself and. , we're able to now utilize a lot more advanced materials. We're using thermally conductive plastics and everything, which I think is an industry first. We're able to get it. It's one of those things, like the quality just gets so much better as you're able to bring things domestically, but you can't do that until you get the scale. And so it's kind of like a chicken before the egg thing where either you're gonna have a ton of money and you can do it right away and just make a big risk, which I couldn't do because we didn't have investors. We didn't have anything. It. Me betting the house against some tooling that I hope works in an industry that I don't have a ton of experience in. But now we've gotten to that point where every single new product that we develop is almost a hun a hundred percent stateside developed. We do all the assembly and manufacturing in-house. I've invested a lot into automation, robotics stuff like that. Mostly because I love playing with them. I'm an engineer and I love programming them and trying to figure out how to make things better, faster, quicker. Not just from lights, but also how we can build things better. So we're able to build 30,000 lights a year, which is one production guy overseeing three or four different robotics systems. Wow. That autonomously dispense grease. They autonomously sold. I've got an order right now for a cobot arm, so we're gonna have like an arm that's picking up pieces, snapping 'em together, checking the torque on all the screws, checking the force to snap those pieces together. Basically, you can turn it on on an optical sensor, make sure that the light output is exactly what it needs to be. If it's not great, kick it off to the side. Someone else will look at it. But for the most part, trying to do everything I can. Basically make this business run as smoothly as possible so that we can just continue to focus on building better products and as well as like the customer service and all that kind of stuff. Cause yeah, for me it's one of those things that as if you build a great product first, everything else becomes easy. If you build a product that just works every time, you don't need a huge customer service department that's handling warranties and all this kind of stuff. Build a product that's just simple to operate. You don't need complex instruction manuals telling you how to turn on the light. Like it's just turns on, it goes and all that kind of stuff. So to me it's kind of one of those things like we'll always spend the extra couple bucks on genuine components and all that kind of stuff automotive grade sealants and plastics so that this stuff just won't break. And if it does break, we just fix it. We just. You know, if it breaks, it's an engineering issue, we'll be able to figure out how to make it not break and we'll be able to work with our suppliers quickly to modify the tool, and three months later we'll have the product with that problem solved. And so our stuff is incredibly iterative. The product that you buy a year from now is probably gonna be very slightly different than what you would get today, just because we're constantly trying to stamp out every little issue that comes up. And so, Yeah. Yeah, I love [00:25:41] Craig Dalton: that. I love that that benefit of us manufacturing and having that tight relationship. So you can take the customer feedback if you're listening and just put it right back into the product. And sometimes it's minor, but it's always a step in the right direction, whether it's for performance, durability, [00:25:57] Matt Conte: what have you. Yeah, yeah, exactly. And it's, yeah, it's one of those things that it sounds easy on paper. It's shocking, like how many companies don't actually do that. Yeah. [00:26:07] Craig Dalton: Listening to customers is surprisingly hard and actually doing something about it, I found. [00:26:12] Matt Conte: Yeah. Yeah. It definitely is. But, you know, let's, [00:26:15] Craig Dalton: let's, let's talk about the, the outbound and lighting lineup as of today. What are the different models? And I'd love to just talk a little bit about the intention of the various [00:26:24] Matt Conte: models. Yeah, yeah. So like, that's sort of another one of those things that makes us unique in this space is, We make a different light for each specific purpose. We're not just making one light at three different power levels or five different power levels. We first, we've got our like bread and butter, which is more for mountain biking. Its so a trail evo that's like a handlebar mounted bike light that's designed to go into handle bars. It's pretty heavy, so it's not gonna fit on your helmet. And it's just an incredibly wide even beam pattern. So that you can be moving your handlebars, you know, 30 degrees to the left and you'll still be able to see where you're going. And then we have our hangover light, which is an ultra lightweight, very slim, low profile helmet light that's designed to go on your helmet can work on the handlebar, but it's not great because it is a narrower spot. Because wherever your head is pointed is probably your eyes are looking. So we can kind of take that beam powder and narrow it down. And still get, have half the lumens, but still the same peak output as I like handlebar light, if not a little bit more. That's so [00:27:28] Craig Dalton: interesting and, and sorry to interrupt Matt, but I, I spent a bunch of time with the, the helmet mounted light. The hangover recently Loved it by the way. And hearing you describe kind of the very purposeful difference, honestly, my entire lighting. I've stuck handlebar mounted lights on my helmet. Yeah, and there was no distinction between the two. It was just like, Okay, great. For the uninitiated night rider, like having a helmet light is important because as you turn your head, as you're going through sweeping corners, A lot of times, certainly with traditional lights, the the light on your bar can disappear. All of a sudden you're going through this arcing turn and you're actually not seeing the trail you're seeing off in the woods. And, you know, you've touched on this in a couple different ways. One, on your handlebar lights you've described how you've tried to purposely widen that, that lighting profile mm-hmm. so that you can turn that 30 degrees and still be in. But the addition of the handle, or sorry, the, the helmet mounted light just gives you that additional ability to kind of look even further. So from by my likes when I'm mountain biking, the ultimate combination is definitely that Evo Plus hangover helmet. Helmet mounted light. [00:28:38] Matt Conte: Yeah, definitely. And that's where those two lights, we also designed to work in concert with each other. So like, the exact same color tempera. Pretty similar being punched strain, so you're not like one light isn't overpowering the other, but it is once you're like looking off down into a hair pan or something like that, that's where it's like you get the brightness of the helmet light. But we make sure that the peripheral spill blends well enough that you're not ending up looking at like two distinct lights. Like it's still feels like an unbroken wall. And so that was like a really important part of the design constraints that we set up when we set the initial lighting targets. Both of these lights was they need to work well together, so, I think it was like 135 degrees off center is like what I aimed for. So basically you're looking your hand, the bars are dead ahead and you're looking like way back behind you. And I still wanted to make sure that there light was blending a little bit so it didn't feel like you saw a black hole basically in between. Yep. Where you're looking and where your hand of eyes are pointing. So it always feels unbroken. Cause as long as you do that, then your eyes are not gonna like. I keep saying like auto exposure, but it's not really the terminology. But basically your eyes aren't trying to adjust for the blackness here and the bright intensity. So as long as it keeps it unbroken. Yeah. Also it's like as you write with it longer, your eye, your pupils start to open up. Cuz they're so used to it, they're not having to contract and expand and contract and expand with the varying brightness levels. As long as it's consistent, you have people who can slowly expand and take in more light. So even though we're working with Lower Lu. Because we wanna have a longer battery life. By just having that unbroken wall of light, it ends up feeling brighter as you get used to it because of the fact that you were, i your eyes are physically opening up more and able to take in more light. Just like when you sit in a room for five minutes in the dark, your eyes start to open up and you can start to see a little bit better. The same thing effect happens with just dim lighting. And all that kind of stuff. And so that's sort of where that philosophy of make sure everything's evenly lit, ultimately ends up helping a lot more as far as like having to like feel a lot brighter, even though the numbers on paper don't seem that impressive. But of course that's one of those things that you can't really, you can't break that down into a one line item on an ad. You can't show that in a picture. You can't show that in video. It's one of. . You just gotta get out there. You gotta ride with it. You gotta try it. And so that's why like word of mouth for us is our biggest yeah. Seller pretty much. Well hopefully [00:31:10] Craig Dalton: this deep dive in the podcast will be a good mechanism for people understanding like the depth of the. Engineering that go into these products and the thoughtfulness that you guys have put in there. Yeah. I think at, before I interrupted you, you were gonna talk about the third lineup, Third light, your lineup. Yeah. [00:31:28] Matt Conte: Yeah. So that's our newest light which is called Detour. It's basically like a road beam headlight. It's designed for gravel riding and road riding. The main difference is being, is that it's, it's basically like a low beam on a car headlight. It's got a cutoff. Where, basically a horizontal line where the light doesn't go above it. So that way you can aim the light up and flat and still be able to see really far down the road where you want to go. Cuz you can put the brightest part of the beam right there, but you're not blinding oncoming traffic. Which is a big deal especially for gravel riders, road riders, or you're approach. Other rider coming towards you, pedestrians and stuff like that. Definitely don't really need it for mountain biking. Cuz a moose doesn't really care if you don't blind him or not. He's still gonna be in the middle of the trail. So, so yeah, that's our newest one. Which again, it's a very specific type of light. It's designed to be a hand of our light, designed to be front and center on your bike. And designed to be aimed in a certain way so that you're not blinding oncoming traffic and stuff. And that's still very wide beam pattern, very progressive lighting from where you're looking all the way out to the front of your tire. I've got side market lights and stuff, so you have better side visibility for traffic or things like that. But yeah, it's just another one of those like. We're not gonna come out with a detour of 1500 or detour 2000 like it's, that's, this is the light. It does around 1200 lumens. You're able to get a lot brighter hotspot because the fact that you, you're not putting half that light in the sky, but to get the cutoff beam pattern so it feels brighter than actually is, you can get good run times and all that kind of stuff. So, Yeah. Cause I was, it's still, [00:33:06] Craig Dalton: it still boggles my mind as someone who started out with a 200 lumen light back then as being like the pinnacle of performance that now you can get 1200 lumens in this incredibly small package. No battery, no external battery. It's all right in there. It's, it's just [00:33:23] Matt Conte: astounding. And you still get an hour and a half, two hours of run time and weighs, was it 135 grams or something? Yeah, and I mean we've got some other designs in play right now that get set even smaller. I'm really, that's sort of like, you know, looking towards the future. Cause you know, like you said, it, it started out with like halogens and car batteries. That was kind of how it started out 20 years ago, 30 years ago. And then IDs bulbs came in and they came out with a little really miniature IDs that again, they did 250, 300 lumens. But they were power sucks. As you waste most of that energy and just heat, like heat coming out of the lamp. But then in around 2005, 2006 is kind of when LEDs became a lot more mainstream. You were able to get them cheap enough that you could build cheap products with. So you saw that explosion, not only the automotive side. Cause that was like when I was really into that, went. The H I d Offroad Lights to Rigid Industries coming out with all their LED D stuff. And the same thing, the bike side. That's like when Night Rider came out, their first I think it was the new or the Lua, their first Lua, like 2005, 2006. Again, 300 lumens. 400 lumens maybe. All that kind of stuff. But then over the last 10 to 15 years, LEDs have gotten, I'd say there's about a five or 10 year stretch where LEDs just every year, just huge leaps. Huge leaps, huge leaps, and then kind of slowed down and stuff. Now the biggest technological leaps in LEDs have basically come from the miniaturization of them. So, And that ultimate that's been driven by the automotive sector, that the automotive sector requires smaller and smaller optics, which means that you need a smaller and smaller source, AKA D L E D. The l e d has to be as tiny as possible so that we can control the rays that are coming, the rays of light coming outta the l e d. So we can control that on a very small optic, and you can put that exactly where you need to. Cause if you put a huge l e. Inside of a tiny optic, you're just gonna get scatter everywhere. It's not gonna be well optimized and all that kind of stuff. So the automotive sector has driven the LEDs to become smaller and smaller and smaller, and they come out like the lumen values don't look impressive on paper. They'll be like, Oh, it's only 300 lumens on this. But that's kind of like why our trail Evo has nine of these LEDs. Cuz you can put these tiny, tiny LEDs into a tiny optic. And still get incredible beam control versus if you try to take like a Cree X H P 3.0 whatever, whatever the biggest l e D is that can do 1300, 2000 lumens, but it's massive. It's like a centimeter wide. You need a ginormous optical reflector to put that into for it to be of any use. Otherwise, you're just scattering light everywhere, uncontrolled. And you see that a lot on a lot of cheap lights. You could tell. They looked at the data sheet, they saw who? 1300 lumens. That looks great. And they're like, Well, let's just, but we gotta fit in this little thing, so let's just taste this l e d, slap it into that. Cool. We got a really bright light. And it's like, Yeah, but it doesn't do anything. Well, it's either extremely concentrated or it's just blown out. Uh um, and so, man, I kind of go off on tangents a lot if you can't tell So, yeah, like the technological jumps, LEDs have kind of slowed down a bunch. And now there's incredibly tiny, incredibly power dense and it's great for us, but there's not, there's not much more that LEDs can do. Like we've kind of reached the final form, I guess you could say. But the next big technological leaf that's gonna be really interesting to jump into is batteries. You know, all these automotive company, again, automotive is leading the, the sector to kind of then drips down into bikes. All of the solid state batteries that every single automotive company is investing into companies like solid power, all that kind of stuff. They're basically promising these batteries that can charge instantly, they can put out huge amounts of power. They won't be as affected by thermals as much. So you can run 'em really cold or really hot and they won't lose a lot of life. And just a lot more power dense. And so to me that's gonna be like the next big generational leap. Not gonna happen next year. It's not gonna happen two years from now, but maybe like five or six years. We hope that we can get, you know, 21 700 cell batteries in a solid state battery for a reasonable price. And that's, These bike flights can either be twice as bright for the same run time, or last twice as long for the same brightness. And that's gonna be, and also incredibly lightweight. Those graphing batteries, I think are like half the weight of a single 21 700 cell. Wow. So that's gonna be, that'd be refreshing. Yeah. And that's gonna be really exciting once those can start coming online. But again, that's probably five years until that becomes more mainstream. They have these technological breakthroughs that they keep promising. Thankfully it's not as vaporware as like hydrogen energy, but we're getting close I feel like. And so a couple [00:38:29] Craig Dalton: nuance things I wanted to point out before we let you go is correct me if I'm wrong, but you can actually charge the light while you're running it. [00:38:37] Matt Conte: Yeah, that's, Yeah. Which of the, [00:38:38] Craig Dalton: It may seem counterintuitive to people that, that doesn't exist across the board, but mm-hmm. , I'd say the vast majority of lights I've ever run. You could not have an external battery pack to kind of top it off if you needed to. [00:38:50] Matt Conte: Yeah. Yeah, pretty much most bike flights, you do have your external battery pack that you have to plug in into, and once you unplug it, it dies. Cause obviously you don't have any power or you plug it in, you can't turn it on because it's just simply charging. Or if you can plug it in and turn it on, it's just gonna be stuck in a low mode because the charging current going into the light isn't enough to like actually power the light. So what we've done knowing that we had a lot of customers who do 24 hour races and all that kind of stuff we do USBC pass through charging where you can basically plug in the light and sort of the way that we can do it is that the. Is being powered off the battery, but we're charging the battery with an external power bank. So you can technically, if you're running like Evo on high with a sort of a low current battery pack, you can technically outrun the battery pack and end up running down. But if you're running like a medium or low, you basically the battery pack charging the battery faster than the LEDs are pulling the power out. So we're not trying to do like a straight through, like the light isn't being powered by the external battery. The external battery package, charging the battery inside the light, which is then being used. So yeah, that was basically just kind of like, as one of those like customer requests, like, Hey, how can we use a cheap Amazon power bank to power my light? Can I do that? And like, Oh yeah, we, we can, I don't see why not. Like you just set up the charging protocols and all that kind of stuff so you could allow that to happen. It gets really complex. Turns out USB stuff is not as easy as it seems. All these like handshakes that have to happen between two different components and it's a real pain in the us But Tom, my co-founder or co-owner out in Seattle, he loves that stuff. So while I'm up at 3:00 AM tweaking beam patterns, he's up at 3:00 AM trying to tweak USB charging protocol. I love it kind of stuff. So yeah, that Love it. Unique features. Yeah. [00:40:47] Craig Dalton: The final detail I wanted to talk about was just the mounting mechanisms that you guys have designed cuz I found them to be very clever and slick and unobtrusive, which is not something I could say about a lot of the mounting mechanisms I've had to endure from other lights. [00:41:00] Matt Conte: Yeah, I mean, you should have seen some of the prototypes that we came up with before we landed on this one. They were large Oakley or Vinicky and not great. But the current one that we use for the Well, for Hangover, we just simply just use what everyone has used for the last 15 years, which is just a standard action camera. I can't officially say GoPro anymore because now they clamp down on that, but it's a GoPro mal. So everyone's used to that. It works great. Low profile. A lot of bikes have, It was built into it, so why not just make sure our helmet light works with that out of the box, which is why Hangover has. Action camera tabs on the back of it. But for Evo and Detour that mounting system was one of those like real hard design challenges because like, like we obviously buy like every single competitor light we can get our hands on. And all of them, they always have at least like one or two good design features. And I'm like, that's a good idea. I'm gonna just take this and put this in mind. But when it came to mounting, I literally could not find anything. I was like, This is great. Cause a lot of the mounting things were, if they were secure, they were really hard to put on. Like, you could not take 'em off with like a pair of thick winter writing thick winter writing gloves. Which for me, that's always been like a design standard. Make sure that we can operate anything on a light with a thick pair of winter writing gloves because most of our customers are ready at night in the. And it sucks to not have to be, not be able to turn on your light or mount it or anything like that. So we went through a lot of iterations trying to figure out how in the world we're gonna mount this light so that it can quickly be taken on and off and all that kind of stuff. Until one of my friends not related at all the bikes or anything, he's a big camera nerd. He like, Hey, you should look at man photos, camera lights, or camera mounts that were the tripod stuff. Super simple. People have used it for literally 40 years. I bought one of them. I'm like, Huh, this is a really good idea. Just a little, It's [00:42:57] Craig Dalton: so interesting that you say that. Now that you say that, I'm like, Oh yeah, that makes sense. I've seen that before and [00:43:02] Matt Conte: that's where I've seen it. Yeah. Yeah. So basically I took the man photo design. I checked photo patents. They all expired in like the late nineties. They patented like in the seventies or 80. And so with basically a free for all you could use it you're not gonna infringe on anything. And basically I took what they did, miniaturized it and tried to make sure that it works so that no matter what, you could have it mounted bird according to light. Disney just gonna fall to the ground. So we put in a little notches and stuff like that to capture it. But for the most part, it's a man foot camera. Designed for bikes or for bike lights. And so all of our lights or all of our handlebar lights have that basically standard n size on the back, a a man photo camera base plate that can slot right into our quick release mount and. Click it in, push it back, closes the plunger torsion spring snaps it shut, and you just push down in the lever to really secure it in place. Little serrated teeth with a big thumb screw that can again, easily be operated when you're wearing a pair of gloves. So you can adjust the beam angle without having to over tighten the amount or anything like that. Yeah, it's one of. The, that mount is on its third iteration. We've already got a fourth one in work right now cause we want to get rid of the, the he screw and all that kind of stuff. So we're gonna try to do like an overcame mechanism and everything. Yeah, it's, I don't know if you ever got to experience the first ones where I did 'em, amount of die cast aluminum and powder coding and ugh, that was one of those hindsight. 2020. I really wish I hadn't done that. But now, last fiber amounts. They work great. The smooth action, all that kind of stuff. It's again, goes back to that whole situation of like, every, let's just iterate. Let's quickly make changes. Don't worry that this cool tool cost five grand. Like we've gotta make the product good. If it's not easy to operate for customers, then no one's gonna like it. Yeah, and all that kinda stuff. So, [00:44:54] Craig Dalton: Awesome. Well, thanks for walking us through the lineup and that backstory. I love, I love hearing your journey. I love, it's sort of admirable to get out there and Kickstarter and put yourself out there on the line. As a former small business owner myself, I, I feel your, I feel that pain of when you mortgaged your house just to get the, the product off the ground and congrats for. Ultimately bringing it back to the US for manufacturing, as you mentioned, so many advantages there, let alone helping the economy, but just advantages that you can continue to roll out better and better performance and take that customer feedback to heart every time it comes through. Yeah, [00:45:30] Matt Conte: yeah, definitely. Yeah, it's always the golds yeah, it's, it makes business sense from a money profit standpoint, and it makes sense just from. The product standpoint, we're able to, and it's, the goal is to just continually advance ourselves further. So like these thermally conducted materials it was something I wanted to use for almost a decade. But we just never had the volume to justify it. Cuz I have to purchase three to 4,000 pounds of this material, just like the minimum order quantity, which is equivalent to like 10,000 units. And when you're starting out, you only have 500 or a thousand for the entire years, like, I can't, I can't justify that. But that's sort of our business goal is like just continually advance and kind of pull away from the competition by integrating these technologies that is not as easy to integrate from the start. Or you need the scale. So, yeah, that's where, yeah, we've got a lot of fun things planned. We've got a long list of things we want to do. We're trying to push into. Bike shops. Next year, like we finally, we've got our manufacturing dial. We've got the robots in place, like we can finally like outpace building from our retail website demand. So now we're kind of trying to expand into bike shops. We're getting like retail, this display developed and all that kind of stuff. And so that's sort of what we're hoping, you know, if anybody shot you listening, you can always go to outbound lighting.com and talk to us, get connected, get you all hooked up and everything. . Yeah. That's where if anybody ideas and stuff like that, always open to listening. If you email us, it's gonna be either come to me, it's gonna come to Tom, like there's literally four people in the company. That's it. And so it's very personable. You're gonna talk to a real person. We don't have any bots running, thankfully. . [00:47:05] Craig Dalton: Right on. Matt, thanks again for the time. I'll make sure everybody knows how to get in touch with you and super informative and congrats. [00:47:12] Matt Conte: Yeah, I appreciate it. It's been great chatting. [00:47:14] Craig Dalton: That's gonna do it for this week's edition of The Gravel Ride podcast. Big thanks to Matt for coming on the show. I hope you, like I did, learned a lot about lighting and the nuances around the lighting choices we can make as cyclists. If you're interested in supporting the show, you can visit buy me a coffee.com/the gravel ride, or ratings and reviews are hugely important. If you're interested in connecting with me, I encourage you to join the ridership. That's www.theridership.com. That's a free global cycling community. Tons of people, and interesting conversations going on in any given day. So I encourage you to join that. Until next time, here's to finding some dirt under your wheels.  

Craig Peterson's Tech Talk
Check If You've Been a Victim of "InfoStealer" Ukrainian Master Hacker Arrested - Police Used His Girlfriend's Instagram to Track Them

Craig Peterson's Tech Talk

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 19, 2022 86:24


Malware… Authorities Arrest Developer of Malware Service - Was Your Credit Card or Other Personal Information Stolen? And How He Was Captured https://krebsonsecurity.com/2022/10/accused-raccoon-malware-developer-fled-ukraine-after-russian-invasion/ According to the U.S. Justice Department, FBI agents have identified more than 50 million unique credentials and forms of identification (email addresses, bank accounts, cryptocurrency addresses, credit card numbers, etc.) stolen. Raccoon was essentially a Web-based control Crime-as-a-Service panel, where — for $200 a month — customers could get the latest version of the Raccoon Infostealer malware and interact with infected systems in real-time. Security experts say the passwords and other data stolen by Raccoon malware were often resold to groups engaged in deploying ransomware. U.S. authorities zeroed in on a mistake that the Raccoon developer made early on in his posts to the crime forums, connecting a Gmail account for a cybercrime forum identity used by the Raccoon developer ("Photix") to an Apple iCloud account belonging to Sokolovsky. Authorities soon tracked Sokolovsky's phone through Germany and eventually to The Netherlands, with his female companion helpfully documenting every step of the trip on her Instagram account. Check If You Were Compromised: https://raccoon.ic3.gov/home ++++++++ Former Uber Chief Found Guilty of Hiding Hack From Authorities. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/10/05/technology/uber-security-chief-joe-sullivan-verdict.html Joe Sullivan, the former Uber security chief, was found guilty by a jury in federal court on charges that he did not disclose a breach of customer and driver records to government regulators. The case — believed to be the first time a company executive faced criminal prosecution over a hack — could change how security professionals handle data breaches. Airbnb… Throwing the spotlight on hidden cameras in Airbnb https://www.welivesecurity.com/2022/11/01/spy-who-rented-to-me-hidden-cameras-airbnbs/ In recent years, some travelers have had their dream vacations ruined by one particularly creepy privacy risk – covert cameras in rental properties, which are often booked via platforms such as Airbnb. Ours is also a time when all sorts of surveillance gadgets are increasingly affordable; what's more, these gadgets are often tiny and/or designed to look like everyday objects – they are intended to be challenging to spot. Airbnb's policy on the matter is pretty unequivocal. Security cameras and noise-monitoring devices are allowed "as long as they are clearly disclosed in the listing description and don't infringe on another person's privacy." How to Find a Hidden Security Camera: Physically check the room: Look for cameras hiding in plain sight, perhaps in clocks, smoke detectors, speakers, or even light bulbs Use a flashlight: Camera lenses are made of glass, meaning they're reflective. So turn the lights down and shine a flashlight around the property. Check for night vision lights: Turning the lights down or off will also help you spot the tell-tale red or green LEDs, which may illuminate night vision cameras. Use an app: Researchers have been working on a mobile application that uses phones' Time-of-Flight (ToF) sensor to find spy cams hidden in everyday objects.  Detect RF signals: A final tell-tale sign of a hidden camera is to monitor for radio frequencies (RF) that the camera may use to connect to a secret network. In addition, a hidden camera may interfere with your phone signal, so stop and investigate. Baby Monitors… Hacking baby monitors can be child's play: Here's how to stay safe https://www.welivesecurity.com/2022/11/07/hacking-baby-monitors-childs-play-how-stay-safe/ We've probably all read horror stories online: a parent is woken in the middle of the night by strange noises coming from their child's bedroom. They open the door, only to find a stranger "talking" to their baby through the monitor. While rare, such cases do happen from time to time. How to Stay Safer: Research your options well, and aim to go with a well-regarded manufacturer with a strong emphasis on security and good reviews. Install any updates to the device's software (or firmware) If possible, choose a model that does not allow remote communication via an app. If it does, turn off remote access, especially when not in use. I am setting up a solid and unique password and enabling two-factor authentication if possible. Review monitor logs regularly to check for any suspicious activity, such as individuals accessing it from a unique IP or at strange times. Secure your wireless router with a strong, unique password. Also, disable remote access to it and port forwarding or UPnP. Finally, make sure the router is kept updated with any firmware patches. Apple… Apple Tracks You Even With Its Own Privacy Protections on, Study Says https://gizmodo.com/apple-iphone-analytics-tracking-even-when-off-app-store-1849757558 For all of Apple's talk about how private your iPhone is, the company vacuums up a lot of data about you. But, of course, iPhones have a privacy setting that is supposed to turn off that tracking. According to a new report by independent researchers, though, Apple collects highly detailed information on you with its apps even when you turn off tracking, an apparent direct contradiction of Apple's own description of how their privacy protection works. Security researchers at the software company Mysk looked at the data collected by several Apple iPhone apps—the App Store, Apple Music, Apple TV, Books, and Stocks. They found the analytics control and other privacy settings had no noticeable effect on Apple's data collection—the tracking remained the same whether iPhone Analytics was switched on or off. "The level of detail is shocking for a company like Apple," Mysk told Gizmodo. ++++++++ Apple clarifies security update policy: Only the latest OSes are fully patched. Despite providing security updates for multiple versions of macOS and iOS at any given time, Apple says that only devices running the most recent major operating system versions should expect to be fully protected. In other words, while Apple will provide security-related updates for older versions of its operating systems, only the most recent upgrades will receive updates for every security problem Apple knows about. For example, apple currently provides security updates to macOS 11 Big Sur and macOS 12 Monterey alongside the newly released macOS Ventura. In addition, in the past, it has released security updates for older iOS versions for devices that can't install the latest upgrades. Most Macs still receive six or seven years of upgrades, plus another two years of security updates.

B&H Photography Podcast
Festive Food Photography with Joanie Simon

B&H Photography Podcast

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 17, 2022 59:22


Food, glorious food—there's no better time than the holiday season for a bountiful exploration of food photography—a fan favorite. For this episode of the podcast, we're delighted to connect with food blogger, educator, and content creator extraordinaire Joanie Simon. Listen in as she discusses the magic behind her aspirational, achievable shooting style. Besides examining the limits to reality when shooting fake food, Simon describes her collaborations with a dedicated crew, offers advice about a photographer's responsibilities when working remotely, and describes her personal evolution through camera brands and models to arrive at the Nikon Z mirrorless system she shoots with today. Discover all these things and much, much more—including a secret recipe for fake ice cream! Guests: Joanie Simon Photograph © Joanie Simon Guest Bio: Instead of an apron, Joanie Simon wears many hats. She's a food photographer, published author, educator, and content queen, and her daily life is a bouillabaisse of camera gear and culinary delights. In just a baker's dozen year—that's 13 for the inexperienced cooks—Simon has built her brand into a powerhouse of creative content and learning. In addition to shooting commercial and editorial assignments, Joanie teaches food photography through her online platform, The Bite Shot. Her food photo adventures on YouTube and Instagram can be found at @thebiteshot and on Tik Tok @joaniesimonsays, and you learn tons more from the many tutorials in her 2021 book, Picture Perfect Food. For more information on our guests and the gear they use, see: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/explora/podcasts/photography/festive-food-photography-with-joanie-simon Stay Connected: Website: https://joaniesimon.com Education Website: https://thebiteshot.com Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thebiteshot YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/joaniesimonmedia TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@joaniesimonsays Episode Timeline 3:56: Joanie Simon's favorite holiday and seasonal foods to photograph 4:34: Cultivating aspirational, achievable food content 6:11: Images created with high quality gear requires exact timing 6:58: How far can you push reality and tricks to making food look good. 8:38: Editorial shooting - an opportunity to run wild, get creative, and shoot conceptually 9:48: A secret recipe for fake ice cream. 12:18: The hero of the shot vs the crash test dummy 13:12: The ratio between single shot pictures and food items that need a test run 15:18: How many team members are on set during a food shoot? 17:37: The evolution of Joanie Simon's food photography career 19:16: Discovery of remote work and creating digital content from home 21:26: The need to take responsibility for communications when working remotely 23:10: What's Joanie's preference: mouth-watering stills or toe tapping videos and stop motion content? 27:18: Software for stills, video, and animation content: Capture One, Dragonframe, and Premiere Pro 29:44: The benefits to and workflow behind shooting tethered 31:09: Joanie Simon's art background and her hesitation about studying art in school   33:10: Episode break 33:58: Thoughts on using gear in a controlled environment: 35:38: Joanie's personal evolution through camera brands: from Nikon to Sony mirrorless to Canon and back to Nikon 40:04: The benefits to working in manual mode, and when to use auto focus 42:14: Joanie's go-to lighting tool: the Godox AD 600 Pro strobe 43:52:  Advantages to flash over working with continuous light LEDs 45:44: Drag your shutter when shooting with flash to control the ambient light 46:33: Joanie's primary light modelling tool: Westcott 4'x4' Scrim Jim Cineframe 48:36: Lens preferences: Primes or zooms and Joanie's go-to lenses: 24 – 70 f/2.8 for flexibility and 105 macro lens for background compression 51:02: Food photography with a phone: wipe off the lenses and it all comes down to the light 52:30: Key elements to a food photograph: Texture, highlights, and getting close up to the food 53:36: Tips for transitioning from a phone to a more formalized camera: Look to the mirrorless world and get a camera in your hands to test 54:50: When photographing people around a holiday table: Stage the magic and direct your subjects. 56:54: Joanie's free workshop about building a food photography business 57:34: Connect with Joanie at thebiteshot.com for links to TicToc, Instagram, YouTube, and blog  

ThePrint
ThePrintAM: How does India plan to reduce emissions under LT-LEDS commitment made at COP27?

ThePrint

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 16, 2022 5:46


The Red Light Report
Treating Cancer-Related Symptoms & Cognitive Improvement via Red Light Therapy

The Red Light Report

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 10, 2022 36:18


Let's dive into some more research on this week's solosode of The Red Light Report. I cover two pieces of research more thoroughly this week, as both of the topics are quite interesting and the information within each article contains valuable red light therapy principles that everyone can apply to their RLT treatments and strategies. The first article deals with the side effects of cancer treatments (i.e. radiotherapy), while the second article is about using phototherapy for improving cognition in those dealing with dementia. I have a hunch that boosting mitochondrial health is involved with both of these!​ I know the info in this solosode will either be great reminders and/or help continue to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the capabilities of RLT and how to best utilize it.  As always, light up your health and enjoy this solosode! - Dr. Mike Belkowski discusses the following: 2:55 - Research on head and neck cancer patients 7:17 - How red light therapy heals 8:10 - Photobiomodulation dosing 9:40 - Prevention and treatment of cancer-related symptoms 15:03 - Photobiomodulation on salivary glands 17:34 - Pre-treatment of red light therapy prior to radiotherapy or surgery 18:16 - Cost effectiveness of red light therapy 21:34 - Dosage standardization 23:04 - Phototherapy for cognitive function in patients with dementia 25:29 - Improving circulation to the brain via phototherapy 28:12 - LEDs vs Lasers 29:12 - Circadian rhythm - timing morning, afternoon, or individualized rhythm for red light therapy treatments 29:58 - Cognitive improvement in patients with dementia - Research articles: Quality Assessment of PBM Protocols for Oral Complications in Head and Neck Cancer Patients: Part 1   Phototherapy for Cognitive Function in Patients With Dementia: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis - Check out the newest innovative device from BioLight... the Matrix! - Check out the Kindle version of Red Light Therapy Treatment Protocols eBook, 4th Edition - To learn more about red light therapy and shop for the highest-quality red light therapy products, visit https://www.biolight.shop - Stay up-to-date on social media: Instagram

Sixteen:Nine
Alan Larson, 65cubed

Sixteen:Nine

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 9, 2022 37:43


The 16:9 PODCAST IS SPONSORED BY SCREENFEED – DIGITAL SIGNAGE CONTENT 65cubed makes and markets a technology solution that has the triple benefit of making commercial displays, like big roadside LED boards, look better, last longer, and still use substantially less energy . The company has a small box that plugs in between the media player and display controller box of a display set-up, using a ton of graphics capabilities, smarts and supporting technology to make, it says, even lower-end, lower cost product from China look great. I had an interesting chat with 65cubed partner Alan Larson about the technology - which I suppose is a form of video wall processing. It gets a little technical in parts of the discussion, but Larson does a good job of not taking listeners too deep into the technical weeds. Color reproduction and image quality are important to brands, but the really intriguing aspect to this is the ability to get another year or two out of the capital investment in a big screen, while also reducing the month to month energy usage bills. Power usage is a much bigger issue in Europe at the moment, but it's something that every media owner with big, bright displays should be looking at, as energy bills rise and, in Europe these days, energy availability is constrained. Subscribe to this podcast: iTunes * Google Play * RSS TRANSCRIPT Alan, thank you for joining me. Can you tell me what your company 65cubed is all about? I just came across it literally a couple of days ago and don't know a lot about it.  Alan Larson: 65cubed is a color management server product designed for LED walls and other video sources. Its roots are better than a dozen years old in the high-end color management space that you might see in a very eclectic home setting, or more commonly post-production studios where color has to be absolutely spot on. What we discovered a couple of years back as LEDs came on, was that as we modulated the color signature, there were significant changes in the power signature. So we started experimenting with that and discovered that we could apply our technology combined with some aggressive time of day, environmental conditions style algorithms to create an aggressive product for an environmental impact on LED walls and that's what sort of got us started. We can make the color on a digital wall look very amazing, we've gotten literally cinematic events on walls before. We usually range between 18-20 to the low 30s on average for a digital wall, especially outdoor settings that are on 24/27 and it varies based on how the customer wants their image and what the foot traffic or automobile traffic might be.  So when you say 18 to 30, what do you mean by that?  Alan Larson: If you are using say 100 Amps peak on a digital midsize wall, the second we turn our system on at the same brightness and color correct it, it'll usually drop that peak amperage, down to 75-80% max, more typically it's sitting in the 60s, I would suppose because most people don't wanna blow their eyes out with the brightness, and a byproduct of that is we've noticed that a lot of people that sell wall time, the arbitrage people go through for the bids, is they request about a 10% grayscale on whites to lessen the risk of their walls being overloaded.  By definition, when we take the power signature down, the advertisers are free to do what they want. We don't care what they do because we're not on that side of the game. But that's a byproduct. You simply don't get the power swings that you would in a wall that does not have our product. So the advantages are both energy savings and better-looking visuals? Alan Larson: Yes, and the byproduct of energy is that because you're not stressing those LEDs as much, they run cooler. We contend that lower stress on the system and its ability to react to external conditions of interest that that'll extend the display life and what that means is that the display owner is in it for keeps, in other words, we've noticed that some people just flip the displays. They bring 'em up and they're looking for somebody else, like any property, those that use it as a long-term investment are very interested in seeing the net present value of that asset go up and know it's gonna stay up. And our guess is somewhere around 12-15% increased display life. In a display the size of a roadside, that's a very substantial saving over time.  Yeah. So if you can lower the energy costs while extending the operating life, that's a double benefit there, right? Alan Larson: The studies we've done so far on outdoor signage, to put in layman's terms, we estimate that the savings on an average wall, call it about 25% conservatively, because we can be very aggressive in low viewership time periods like overnight, is about the same as saving two average American homes electricity every year.  And the media company won't really care about that, but they will care about what it means to their bottom line. Alan Larson: And to your point, Dave, when I get asked who is your market? My market is typically the guy that owns the OpEx and the EBITDA for the company. As we've found again, our roots are on the studio side, but as we've talked to asset owners the price point and fulfillment of their displays are market-driven. Their costs underlying, they're the only ones that really care about it, because they're gonna get what they can get based on the location and so forth. So if we can take 25% out of their most consistent ongoing costs, by definition, that asset owner's gonna earn more money.  So would your typical customer then be somebody in Oklahoma, who has a small media company and they've got five digital billboards along a highway and they are looking for ways to save money on that? Is that most typical or are these big media companies? Alan Larson: We don't care. If they have one sign, to us that savings are linear. Each sign has the same impact, of a given size. Our market is those asset owners.  For example, I'm working on a project with a company that owns, I think around 40 roadside billboards, and they can blanket it across. Now they're in the rural Midwest, and what's especially of interest to them is that in the overnight hours, we can turn the savings model into the 40+ percent range because of the way we can manipulate the pixels on the screen and drive down the power consumption even further. How do you do that?  Alan Larson: It's probably best I don't give away all our secrets because some of what I'm describing is in the patent-pending process. The underlying technology, I think, has around 14 or 17 patents in the color management space, and just by reference, the roots of this company come out of ex-Kodak people in their digital color division.  The actual author of most of the patents is the retired Chief Technology Officer for that division with a Ph.D. in Color Physics out of MIT, so it's pretty heavy stuff. When I talk about some of the concepts of the color gamut, most people's eyes go shut in about half a second. So we have to be careful to tone it down a little bit.  Count me among those!  Alan Larson: The overnight hours, basically what we do is we sit between the video player and the wall's controller. So in a production setting, you unplug the HDMI into the video controller and insert our box between the player and that video controller, and then put another little segment of HDMI cable and we're in line between the two, and what happens is, because we know a particular color red, let's call it the OU Crimson color. That's a branded color. We can reproduce that color to that PMS standard if you're thinking of it as a paper representation. We've never seen it. If someone says, I want to bid with pure IBM Blue, I think we'd probably win the deal. Now, what that means is that we put a scope against a screen, and we measure upwards of 8,000-9,000 patches. We call them patches, but they're effectively samples. So if I feed that OU Red to the screen, I'm gonna make this up because the numbers are huge. Each digital pixel gets a digital command that tells it what colors, how to turn the pixels on, how bright it should be, and so forth. But let's just say in simple terms, the color for that OU Red is the number 1234. We have a very nice reference scope that looks at it and says, we got 1234, but the best that screen could spit back, because all the pixels in the world are made in one big bucket over in China, it spits back 1662. “Why?” It's cuz it does. It has nothing to do with the controller. It has nothing to do with anything else. Then we know. Oh cool. So that means we have to send at the number 1553, whenever we see 1234 for any given pixel and it'll spit back the actual image of 1234, and poof, we do that for all the colors in the gamut and that's what brings out the true color.  Now, a lot of people talk about, moving the white point. That's a fallacy in our world because a white point is actually what's called D65 or 6,500 Kelvin is pure white. When you properly set red, green, and blue (RGB), when they're running to true calibrated and color-managed perfection, that white is the Venn diagram intersection of those color spaces. It never moves no matter how bright it is. So when we reduce the illumination of a screen, we're actually bringing down the mathematical values that told the LED to be bright, not the mathematical values that keep the color in perfect harmony, which makes a very nice cinematic look. In the evening, you can drive down the freeway or in Nova Scotia, a remote road with trees around it, and the colors are beautiful. And at night we take a much more aggressive use of the color black in a way that people can't see cuz black on an LED wall is electrically the value of 0 Amps. So if we query 20-30% of that screen in a mathematical way, no matter where we had it set, that amount of additional power is gonna disappear cuz those LEDs are physically not doing anything, but it really looks nice and we don't tell people how we do it because we can't do that. And you're able to do more at night simply because you don't have to drive these things as hard, right?  Alan Larson: We've never actually put up a light meter, I know we could, but we use the absolute location of the display itself, and the nice thing is the geolocation of every place on the earth has an exact sunrise and sunset time that changes every day of the year. So that means in Nova Scotia, the Sun's gonna set at 4: 28 this afternoon, which means somewhere around 4 o'clock or maybe a little before, we'll start taking the brightness part of that mathematical equation, slowly move it over, perhaps 45 minutes or so into a full post-dusk mode where it'll be in an evening setting and then when the asset owner says, there's nobody on this road, let's flip in the low viewership mode because from, say 11 o'clock till 6 in the morning, only three cars go by, but we're required by contract to keep that wall alive. So it's a combination of how the marketing people wanna see it and what's appropriate for the marketing setting. When we do things like Las Vegas, we can't be as aggressive, because they just love brightness out there. But I will tell you that some of those absolutely huge walls that you see, I'm assuming you've been to the strip, it's nothing to take 50 grand a year and cost off of those walls. So when I am buying your product, am I purely buying the box and the technology that's in there, or am I buying a service and a platform?  Alan Larson: Yes. The answer is the latter. The box is a computer. It's a very fast computer that has boatloads of GPUs and processors because it's creating absolute color, and saturation is different at each pixel level, which means we can maintain grayscale visibility in an almost black setting.  Most of the time they dither out and they're just a blob. You can actually see the changes in the subtleties of the shadows, and I'm gonna go back to your question, but a point I wanted to make earlier is because of that purity, that absolute control at a pixel level, your image will be more in focus, and it's simply because the processor captures the subtleties between each pixel to the point where the processor doesn't give up and approximate them as a cheap TV would, and all of a sudden you see what the director intended, not what a lower cost video display processor was able to produce.  Now, back to your question about pricing. We sell our product in a tier of four ways. For lack of marketing intelligence, we call it the base product. It's the kind of product you would use, say in a conference room or a church where you turn it on and you just want it to look nice and you're gonna turn it off. The energy savings piece is incidental because they don't care, and they plug it into a 110 circuit and call it a day. We sell that as basically the asset with the color management system and everything they want to use on it is basically a manual setting.  Then the next one, which we affectionately call our Energy module and pops in all of the automated features for geolocation time of day, anything you wanna do that is environmentally based or schedule based, it'll take over. In fact, when we take the color way down to the point where you go, gosh, it's dim, the color management system can actually pull, this is the patented stuff, out warm colors or blue colors or whatever would add a little zip back into the picture. Now is it absolutely pure to the King's English studio? No. Does it look better? Oh yeah, it does.  So that means you can create a very pleasant brand running it about 25 to 35% of the power signature, and I'd have to show it to you cuz once you see it, you go, huh? What do you know, those facial tones came out. So that part of the product is typically sold on an energy split, software as a service model, either as an asset purchase or as a software as a service, continued service. And it's based on an energy savings model. So technically if you were in Nevada versus New York, the price point for the same asset would probably be different in our eyes. But in all cases, the customer always wins. If they purchase the product, they will always be cash positive in less than 24 months and thereafter. Yeah, that was gonna be a question was, yes, you could save money on this, but is the cost of the technology at a point where you're not really saving, you're just saving on your energy bill or whatever?  Alan Larson: No, our play is, I gotta be able to look a CFO in the eye and go, you'll be better off with us. End of conversation. I don't care if you give a damn about color, you'll be better off, and quite frankly, the entertainment companies that have a customer that comes in for three days and gambles, they honestly don't care, right? ? Cause their market is to get people behind a slot machine. And other people, if you go into a boardroom setting or someone that cares about their brand, oh heck, they don't care about the energy. They want it to look perfect. They're there to impress their customers. So it depends on the market. And by the way, the device is always hooked via a very secure tunnel to our server farm in Rochester, New York, which means nobody can actually get into the server. It's impenetrable, and the only way you access it is through a web app that can run on any device and you can watch the behavior. You can see how much the machine is ready. You can see how much if you elect to put onboard storage and so forth, and you can do all the manipulation of the screen via the web, no matter where you are. Since I brought that up, I'll shift to the fourth piece of our product, which is smart automation. Because we're keeping a heartbeat pulse on that machine, if the video path goes away, either to or from, the technician on duty will get an immediate alert on his cell phone. If we're hooked to a UPS and the UPS is alive, so we're alive, but the network's connection goes down, then more than likely there's a power failure somewhere else. Once again, we'll notify them immediately, and the reason we can do that is that the server farm is that which actually notifies the technician, not the device itself. So it's saying, “I lost my baby out there in the middle of nowhere. I'm gonna tell somebody about it.” As a byproduct of that, the third tenant that we sell to, and this is for people that just have a desire for it, we've been asked and have done camera installations. There are a lot of controllers that do camera installations, which is fine. It's nothing unique, but again if someone is having a hard time with a consumer paying their bill because they want absolute validation of their display ads, we'll just have the server snap a picture every three seconds and log it both locally and up on the server, and if somebody asks a question, here, knock yourself out. Here's a log of everything that happened, and if we throw an error at the system, then if the camera's up, we would immediately turn a live feed on and make that feed available to the technician via that text. So in rural settings like where you live and a lot of the mountain states, these guys in bucket trucks drive two hours just to find out they didn't even need to go there.  For example, we were at a sports bar where the network went down for six minutes and the technician got an error. By the time he read the error, the system was back up. So he calls and says, What the heck happened? We go, go talk to your network people. That's exactly what happened. It's that kind of stuff. The idea behind this smart service is that we do not want the distributors that buy and resell our product to get a call at 11 o'clock at night because the consumer found something wrong. We want them to be able to call their customer and say, by the way, “if it's of interest to you, I remediated a couple of issues last week. No problem. That's just what we do for you because we care”, and that's why we built it. That was all based on the distributor. Because they have a business to run and every time they have to service a wall for no reason, it just takes away their bottom line above and beyond what the customer bought. This is a distributor feature.  So I've been to many trade shows, but trade shows that included booths for companies who were specifically in the business of video wall processing for LED video walls. I'm thinking of companies like Brompton and I understand at a base level, I guess at most, that you're running your signal through these boxes, which optimizes and improves the visuals that get pushed to the screen and therefore make it look better. Is that essentially what you're doing here or is this like another component?  Alan Larson: No, it definitely conditions the video signal. In the high-end video market, a couple competitors I can think of, on a studio set, you'll see Black Box, where they actually condition the camera. I've seen Lumigen in high-end settings.  We're similar in those products. There's a thing called a LUT box. We are the highest-resolution LUT box on the market. We got our name 65cubed because we're a 65x65x65, that's the cube, RGB-based technology. The nearest competitor that does something like this, I think is 37 cube and most of them are like 17, and most of the calibration style activities we've seen from all companies are one-dimensional, not three-dimensional, and again, we're basically hitting the color management system for a digital wall with a sledgehammer because we happen to own the asset. Our sister company is owned by the same investor as we are so we have untethered access to all the software assets.  So is this the sort of thing that you purely sell as a product or would you license it as well to a big-time, top-five LED manufacturer so it would just be incorporated in the overall product? Alan Larson: We would welcome it because it's a lot easier to sell and implement, for example, there are two ways that our system gets installed. Because we can't control the quality of any given panel that goes on a wall, regardless of the manufacturer, we always scope the system to start with.  So if someone owns some walls along Interstate 10 and they said, we want these fixed, we'll actually go in a bucket truck for a couple of hours and scope the screen, and once done, it's done and every display that's of the same bin of LED, they're done. But if it's an oddball, you go do it.  For a distributor when they receive their great big crates of panels from China, they take one out, they're usually like 6 inches x 12 inches or foot by foot or wherever there are. They just lay it on the floor, hook a controller to it, put the scope against it, and go home for dinner. And then that entire set of crates that came in the same shipment are all done, and so the customer never gets involved in it. But no, the underlying technology of our sister company is in thousands of high-end monitors that are used in commercial settings, high-end gaming, that kinda stuff. Who's the sister company?  Alan Larson: The technical name is Entertainment Experience. Their trademark company is called EE Color, and it's embedded in our technology. We're both owned by the same group.  Is the product something that would be used across any manufacturer? I mentioned the top five companies that perhaps sell a lot of this stuff at least to the major media companies, for the sides of buildings and roadside billboards, and so on. Or is this more the thing that's gonna really improve lower-tier, lower-cost products? Alan Larson: I can't speak for the quality management of any manufacturer. The lower quality products, distributors that don't sell the top three or four name brands. They love it because they can go and compete for head to head. We have clever tools we give them. We give them an image that's basically duplicated side by side and play it in duplication on the screen, and then we tell our processor to physically not process the left side of the screen pixels and the right side we do, and it's visually impressive because the telltale evidence of digital walls that are pushing too much electricity and don't portray are people. We went to the Infocom Show last June, I believe we went with a partner, a distributor that resells our product. We were the only ones that had people, not swirling colors and mountain scenes, right? Because we can produce the facial tones of anybody, whether you're Caucasian, of color, just as if you're looking at them in your face. When you get the people's faces right, I guarantee you the rest of the colors are in.  Typically what happens is people look like they sat under a sunlamp all day. Another telltale evidence of a screen often aging is that white looks turquoise. That just means the whole color skew is pushed way out, and when we bring that back in, and by the way, when it's pushing purple, it's pushing a lot more electricity too. When you bring it into white, the white is is the byproduct of the red, blue, and green in concert. We don't create white, white happens, is what I'm trying to say.  For the lower-cost products coming over primarily from China, one of the criticisms is that they use LED light admitters from a really wide “bin”, a wide assortment of bins with different Color properties, and everything else. Is the proposition here that that's not the same worry if you're using this kind of technology?  Alan Larson: No. We usually tell the distributors who buy those. You have to pay attention to the bin numbers as they come in because yes, they vary widely and you find that the distributors are pretty clever. If they pull some panels out that look odd compared to the rest of them, they literally sort them. It sounds like a big pain in the neck, but they don't want their customer to have a checkerboard on the wall.  But no, typically the rule is if you receive another shipment that the manufacturer declares is of the same bin, you hope that the manufacturer has integrity then you go with that. What you typically find is, let's assume the bins are off by 5% or 6% in the color signature, and it's on the side of a wall, along a freeway somewhere. The energy curve is gonna be taken care of. These colors won't be textbook, but again, you have a viewing discussion with the consumer for about two seconds when they look at the screen. otherwise, they're gonna hit that semi in front of them. So you don't have to be as particular on roadside displays as you do in company settings or boardrooms.  You mentioned coming out of the studio world and so on. Is this primarily a product for outdoor displays that you're gonna see from a long distance or is this the sort of thing that you could use indoors for 1.8-millimeter fine pixel pitch walls? Alan Larson: Actually, today I'm going over to a manufacturer's US distribution center, and I'm gonna be working with their team to set up a 0.5-millimeter, 5x9 foot wall in their boardroom. Now, the finer the pixel pitch, the more amazing the product actually.  So last question: I was curious about energy savings. I work quite a bit with a company over in Germany. We collaborate on things and they asked me about energy concerns in North America I say, people are aware of it, but it's not a point of discussion. Obviously, it's a huge point of discussion now in Europe. Are you getting questions at all about that and are the customers interested in that side of it? Alan Larson: We're more interested than people we've found. In fact, one of the reasons I went to the DPAA shows a couple of weeks ago. One of my missions was specifically to look for potential distributors in continental Europe for that very reason. I've traveled extensively in my career overseas and have put a lot of time into Europe and the Middle East, and it's a whole different world over there, and the weird thing about Americans, and probably Canadians too, is they've never been more than 250 miles from the day place they were born and like in Dallas where I live, you don't see any news about New York because it might as well be Germany. They don't get it, there's just not something that would register. So the European thing here is nothing more than news on the nationals every so often. And you don't have US media companies or maybe Canadian media companies as well expressing concerns about the cost of energy and interest in your product primarily because of that. They're more interested because of the color properties?  Alan Larson: If they pay the bill for that asset, they care. When I was at DPAA, I got killed with acronym soup because I come out of the high-tech industry, databases, applications, and computers, and I could have given you the same three letters and some acronyms, and I would've thought it was something different. So I sat there and just listened and looked for the context and by and large the word “energy”, and the word “perfect color” wasn't mentioned once in the five days I was there, and hence I met with an architectural engineering firm that's all about energy and they went, you have uniqueness here that we believe as we do these great big installations will give us a competitive advantage, and that was the most productive meeting I had all week, actually. So back to your question about the majors. I have approached the likely candidates that are the big display owners, the people that make them and some have amazing products, don't get me wrong, We've looked at a couple of them, call it the top three or four, and we go, you know what the difference is between some of the cool things they're doing and what we can provide, that just validates our market. We don't care if we so-called compete against them because that's goodness. Because they're doing the right thing for the environment. That we're trying to do. We're sensitive to that. So the European piece is very important to us. We're just attempting to get a foothold to get our product supported locally.  All right, Alan. If people wanna know more about the company, where can they find it online?  Alan Larson: If they go to our website, they can fill out a simple form that says, “I wan to know more” and that's about all it does, and I'll call them right back, or I'll have somebody in our group call them back. That's 65cubed.com, right? Alan Larson: Right! All right. Thanks again for spending some time with me.  Alan Larson: Thanks very much.

Adafruit Industries
EYE on NPI: Richtek RT4539 36 V I²C Controlled 6-Channel WLED Driver

Adafruit Industries

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 3, 2022 8:14


This week's EYE ON NPI is a bright-eye'd and bushy-tailed go-getter, who can juggle multiple tasks at once: it's the Richtek RT4539 36 V I²C Controlled 6-Channel WLED Driver (https://www.digikey.com/en/product-highlight/r/richtek/rt4539-36-v-6-ch-wled-driver)! This chip can do it all: it's a boost converter, it's a calibrated constant-current sink, it's a PWM controller, it's a gamma-corrector, and it's got I2C for controlling all the settings. It's designed for use in laptop or tablet backlight control, and all the little extras that were designed in make it excellent for other sorts of lighting drives - just cause it says its for white LEDs doesn't mean you have to only use it for that purpose! The first feature of this chip is the boost converter. Since most LED backlights (and even some large LED clusters) have the LEDs in series to keep them current balanced, we often need to boost the battery voltage up to 20V+, this chip can go up to 36V output from 2.7 to 24V input - which means it can handle up to 10 LEDs at 3.3V forward drops, and still have a little headroom. The boost FET switch is internal so only an inductor and diode are required. Since this is a constant-current chip, the output voltage will fluctuate as necessary to support the current draw needed. The booster frequency can be adjusted over I2C to balance flickering/beat frequencies and efficiency vs low power usage. The second feature is the constant current string driver. As mentioned, large backlights try to string LEDs together to balance the current, but once you get past about 3-5" diagonal, there's usually more than one string. So now you want to make sure each string is balanced. Inside are comparator/differential drivers that use matched transistors and resistors with current mirroring setup to make sure you get the same exact current through each string. The third feature of the RT4539 is the PWM driver (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pulse-width_modulation). Yes you can reduce the current through the strings but its easier to get a wide range of brightness values by keeping a constant current and then PWMing the output sink drivers. It's normal to see linear PWM drivers: where you can go from 0-255, say for 8-bit control and that translates to a linear duty cycle. This chip goes above-and-beyond and provides an exponential "gamma corrected" (https://learn.adafruit.com/led-tricks-gamma-correction) output control curve if desired. This gives a more natural and useful brightness curve where there's more granularity at low brightness values, often used for night modes. The fourth (and final?) feature to highlight is that all of the settings for the capabilities are available over I2C! From the booster frequency to sink current, to the PWM style and duty cycles to extras like smooth dimming transition features, there's a register map for easy configuration and adjustment, making his chip trivial to integrate into any design with a microcontroller or microcomputer. The Richtek RT4539 (https://www.digikey.com/short/th42j03z) is super-duper new, so it's not yet available for purchase on Digi-Key's website - keep an eye out for when this chip becomes available or contact your Digi-Key sales rep and they'll be able to wrangle you some samples!

Adafruit Industries
Tutorial Demonstration: LED Costumes in Harsh Environments

Adafruit Industries

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 2, 2022 2:11


Tutorial Link: https://learn.adafruit.com/light-up-costumes-in-harsh-environments/ Light-up costumes using LEDs are delicate. Wires break, connectors, fail, and dust or water can get into the tiniest cracks in your enclosure, causing short circuits or rust. And yet, most of our LED costumes are dreamed up, built, and created to be taken into harsh environments. We want to wear them to festivals in the desert and have them glow all night. We want to dress our wiggling, squirming kids up in lights so they can trick-or-treat on Halloween Night. We need our costumes or art cars to stand up to assault by excited bystanders who can't resist poking, touching, and tugging on our beautiful creations. They need to be able to weather windstorms and rainstorms, long hugs from strangers in the dark, immersion in cuddle puddles, or pole dances on a moving art car, deep in the playa. They need to work every time we turn them on, without an hour's worth of repairs needed after every appearance. This tutorial will give tips and tricks on design, build, and maintenance for costumes that Will Not Break. I'm using my favorite example: my light-up swimming mermaid tail. You think the playa is a challenge? Try wearing your LED costume in the ocean. Visit the Adafruit shop online - http://www.adafruit.com ----------------------------------------- LIVE CHAT IS HERE! http://adafru.it/discord Adafruit on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adafruit Subscribe to Adafruit on YouTube: http://adafru.it/subscribe New tutorials on the Adafruit Learning System: http://learn.adafruit.com/ -----------------------------------------

Sixteen:Nine
Giles Corbett, Cloudshelf

Sixteen:Nine

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 2, 2022 38:26


The 16:9 PODCAST IS SPONSORED BY SCREENFEED – DIGITAL SIGNAGE CONTENT A UK start-up called Cloudshelf has come up with an accessible, heavily-automated and simple platform that helps small, mainly local retailers offer the same kinds of interactive display tools in their stores as deeper-pocketed and more heavily resourced major retailers. The company has written code that crawls and analyzes local retail sites on Shopify's vast e-commerce platform and produces interactive experiences that are a lot more than just the online site on a screen in the store - something we've all seen and rolled our eyes at. In this case, it is curated and stylized to look and work like an in-store interactive site produced by a digital agency - probably for a lot of money. I spoke with founder Giles Corbett about the origins of his company, how the platform works and is sold, and why the nightmare scenario of retail lockdowns and restrictions through the pandemic actually created something of a perfect storm for Cloudshelf. Subscribe to this podcast: iTunes * Google Play * RSS TRANSCRIPT Giles, thank you for joining me. Can you give me a rundown of what Cloudshelf is all about?  Giles Corbett: Yeah, sure, Dave, with pleasure. First of all, I gotta say it's fantastic to be on the podcast. So Cloudshelf is a really simple idea. We call it in-store eCommerce. Now I bet you and the people listening to this podcast, you've all been into a store at some point, and you've gone in looking for a bike or a pair of jeans or some jewelry and you haven't found what you were looking for and you left the store disappointed. It turns out this issue of walkouts costs physical stores a trillion dollars a year. So it's a big issue, and that's just the immediate loss of sales, without even talking about all of the dissatisfaction, et cetera that it causes later on.  Now, being such a big issue, it turns out that some of the most successful retailers worldwide have built solutions to go and bring digital experiences in-store that can alleviate this issue. But what Cloudshelf does is it takes this idea and just using an AI-driven platform immediately makes it available to even smaller or independent retailers that don't have the unlimited means or the technical knowledge of some of these super retailers and these retailers can very simply set up Cloudshelf in a matter of minutes and get fantastic digital in-store experiences, either interactive experiences or display experiences that help them sell more and close more sales in the store. That's what it's about.  So how this would manifest itself in a store, a physical store, would it be some sort of a touch screen kiosk screen, whether it's on a counter or free-standing, or perhaps mounted on a wall? Giles Corbett: Dave, all of those. It's always using some form of digital display, and Cloudshelf can operate either on interactive touch screens that you're describing, or it can even be on display-only screens. I'll talk about those maybe a bit later on. But indeed, typically retailers will have a kiosk that could, maybe imagine a fashion store with a small jewelry range and on the jewelry counter, you go and see a beautiful screen that's showing off in a stunning way all of the available jewelry, and you go and see the small range on display and you maybe you can't find exactly what you're looking for and the screen next to it will say, discover the rest of our jewelry range. You touch it, you can find what you're looking for, and even buy it directly off the screen.  Now this is different though and I wrote about this recently, how I walked around the National Retail Federation Show and saw some eCommerce companies at that time. This is going back 3- 5 years, basically pushing their websites and their online presence to an in-store screen, but not changing anything. It was just The eCom site on a computer terminal, basically in the store, and from my perspective, that wasn't enough.  I'm very old and I go back to the starting days of the internet and online news sites were filled with what was called shovelware, basically shoveling content from another medium onto a smaller screen and saying, we're done, and it looked like that. You're saying this is different, right?  Giles Corbett: Yeah, putting your website on a screen in the store is a really bad idea. You wouldn't expect to go and find your website just running as it is on a desktop, or on a mobile phone. Similarly, as a customer, you do not want to go and see the website running on a screen when you go into a store. If I go into a store and the retailer says, oh, I'm sorry, I can't help you. It's on the website. Please take a look at it. I'm thinking, hang on, why did I even bother walking into the store in the first place? Now the whole point is to go and create digital experiences that complement the magic, the delight of being in a store. You go into a store because you think that the person who's there is actually going to advise you on the best shirt that looks the best on you, or the bike that's the best for the kind of road that you want to go on, or whatever it may be. You want that level of advice, of contact, of engagement, and therefore you want a digital experience that complements that, and that's what Cloudshelf does.  If you just put the website there, it fails miserably. Look, I will give you a really obvious example. Go into a clothes store and you have jeans, you have shirts, you have ties, you have suits, etc. If you've gone in wanting to buy jeans, you've gone up to the jeans area and you've had a look, you expect the screen next to that area to go and show you about jeans, not to go and show you that if you happen to be on the third floor of the store, you could also go and get swimwear or whatever it may be. So it's the idea of having this effectively interactive visual merchandising next to the product, and you want something that enhances that in-store experience, and that's what this is doing, and then there are a whole bunch of other reasons why it's different to the website. For instance, it knows a device it's on so that when you go and buy something, it knows which store it came from. It makes sure that you don't have to enter any personal information onto the device itself. If I was to go on the website and I wanted to buy something in the store, I need to go and type my credit card number into that tablet or that website, that would be crazy. So it does away with all of that, and it does a whole bunch of other things too.  So the premise here is that you can take an already built and managed and populated eCommerce website from a cloud platform and largely automate and push a version of it, a curated version of it, to smaller screens without having to hire an interactive agency and have a 6-12 month project on a possibly a six figure budget to put it all together, right? You can do this pretty inexpensively and easily?  Giles Corbett: That is a perfect summary. So indeed, we start with the existing eCommerce website. Why? Because for most retailers, that has now become the biggest repository they have of visual assets, product descriptions, et cetera. So that's what we use as a starting point, and just imagine if you're a retailer, you've invested a lot in your online website. It's fantastic if you can just reuse that automatically to go and create all of these in-store displays, so you're spot on.  If you happen to be, for instance, a Shopify retailer, you simply add the Cloudshelf app. It analyzes all of the products that you have, and it says, what kind of a display do you want to create? “I wanna create one for trousers or jeans, menswear, whatever…” You want to say what it is, it will then go and propose all of the products to go and put into it, and it will go and create that. You then say which screen you want it to go on, and it displays that on the screen. It updates whenever you update the website. It chooses all of the best-looking images so that you don't need to go and go through and select them all independently. It does the whole thing in under five minutes from beginning to end. So you would have templates, I would assume that would be the wireframes to do this in different ways?  Giles Corbett: Yeah, absolutely. You could choose a number of parameters around how you want to go and lay it out, but you don't have to. You can just click ‘Create a Cloudshelf' and it's there within seconds and then you wanna go and tune it, sure, you can tune it.  Do you find if people are doing the kind of click-and-forget thing where it's just gonna create something that they're fine with that? Or do they want to tweak it?  Giles Corbett: They definitely want to go and tweak elements that are key to their visual branding, so brand colors, logos, fonts, and things like that, and most of them will do that.  But then what is amazing is they can just about forget about it because after that, whenever they do an update to their website, it is carried through and it's there and it's intelligently displayed. They go and put on promotional sales and it is carried through to their Cloudshelf automatically. So once they've spent maybe 5-10 minutes doing those initial branding choices, then the whole thing just runs.  And that's because you're working at an API level with the eCommerce platform?  Giles Corbett: Absolutely. So a big part of what Cloudshelf does is an incredibly powerful backend sync engine that just manages the analysis, and synchronization, checking all of the retailers that are live on the platform. And you've integrated first by the sounds of it, with Shopify, and Shopify gives you a vast audience, correct? Giles Corbett: Shopify gives us pretty fantastic API access. It gives us a vast audience and it gives us a growing audience. So what we see in all of the countries in which we started operating is that more and more of the retailers who maybe were using another solution are moving over to Shopify, and one of the things they love about Shopify is the ecosystem of apps that enable them to go and find exactly the solution they were looking for to address their issues. So for us, Shopify has been a great place to start and learn.  It seems to me Shopify was noodling this, going back four or five years ago at NRF and some other eCommerce companies as well, why wouldn't they do their own as opposed to partnering with you?  Giles Corbett: You know what? I think you are right that Shopify is going to be looking more and more at this. In their recent declarations,  they were really promoting in-store being the next growth vector for them suggesting that this is an area that they will be looking at. And you know what, when they do, I think they'll come up with something that'll no doubt be absolutely fine.  But if you want to have the very best solution, it's gonna be Cloudshelf because we are the team that's just dedicated to this area of work and development.  Yeah I've been involved in digital signage for more than 20 years now, and I've seen all kinds of very large, well-funded, deeply experienced companies get into digital signage, but, only kind of sorta, and it's a skunkworks operation. I'm thinking about past iterations of Cisco and Google and companies like that, and they're just not fully engaged and therefore the products are never all that robust. It's just like, “There, we did it!”  Giles Corbett: Yeah, I think there's a bit of that, and let's go back to what Shopify is doing. They're clearly promoting and investing in their POS and making it better and better. They are going to spend time on this but we are at a slightly different segment where this intersection of digital signage, which is about beautiful displays, and eCommerce, which is all about driving transactions and this space that we've created for in-store eCommerce is all about the union of those two worlds. Yeah, I would imagine you had to spend a lot of time thinking about the user experience, how it looks to people walking up to it, how they're gonna navigate it, and so on because it's not the same as sitting at a desktop or monkeying around on your tablet to shop.  Giles Corbett: Absolutely. To begin with, it's a public screen, so the kind of information that you'd expect your phone to know or that you'd be willing to type into your phone, you do not want to be entering onto a public screen, so you need to have all of the handoff, the seamless handoff between what happens on the public screen and then what you complete to finalize the transaction on your private phone, and that is a completely novel experience. When you're working with a big eCommerce platform like Shopify, were you just working basically tapping into their API and developing something, or were there sit-down meetings with Shopify folks saying, “Here's what we wanna do, here's what we need from you” and they were, in turn, asking you how we manage security and all those things? Giles Corbett: It's a very interesting question, Dave. When we first spent some months actually prototyping all of this solution as a private app, something that was still allowed on Shopify in the early days, we were trying all of this stuff out and iterating like crazy with retailers. And then at one point we went to Shopify and said, listen, this is our idea, this is what we wanna do, this is what we want to launch, and they were scratching their head saying, “Hang on, we don't really understand. Is this POS or is it eCommerce? Where does it sit?”  We said no. This is new. This is different. This is taking somebody's website and making it so that it renders and uses beautifully in their store, and so at first, there was some confusion on their side about where does this fit? And then the more we engaged, the more enthusiastic they became, and they've been fantastically helpful at giving us feedback and advice on a bunch of things.  Do you have the back end sorted out as well? One of the things that I said to some of the companies when I was walking around NRF and they were showing this core idea was, what about device management? How do you know if the screen's active and working properly and so on, and they looked at me like I had three heads, it just had not occurred to them. Giles Corbett: Dave, in a past life, I was running from West London, a network of 15,000 connected devices in, I think it was 350 cities in China and so yeah, we learned everything we needed to learn about monitoring devices.  You have been through the wars. Giles Corbett: Big time. Anyway, what I'd say is that if you go and look at the Cloudshelf code base, the bit that we call the engine, the bit that displays on the screens is probably well under 20% of the code base. The backend and all of the management tools are where all of the cleverness is.  Yeah, that's an interesting comment because I've said so many times to people that getting media to play out on a screen is a technical challenge, but it's minor compared to all the work needed to keep the stuff playing on the screen reliably and manage it. Giles Corbett: Yeah, indeed. Retailers are using Cloudshelf because they want to enhance the in-store experience. You do not enhance the in-store experience by having a blue screen. Yeah, definitely. So where did this idea come from? I was looking at your LinkedIn background and your previous company was Ksubaka and it seemed to be about interactive in retail as well. Giles Corbett: Yeah, so my background has always been around stuff that drives or is driven by end-user engagement. So it started off with mobile games, and then from mobile games, we thought about how we can use games to go and drive engagements in stores next to products, and would that be the beginning of a fantastic media platform. And that's what Ksubaka was all about, and we developed that extensively in China, and then that sort of stayed in China, and we'd started developing extensions from what we are doing Ksubaka in the UK and in France, and we were supporting big retailers such as Tesco, Marks & Spencers, Next, and some others. And then the pandemic hit and Every single one of our retail clients closed down in literally a two or three week period, and that gave us an opportunity to think, reflect, go work on some of the back projects that we hadn't had time to work on, and while that was happening, there were two things that happened that I found absolutely fascinating. First, we just became more and more aware of all of the small independent retailers around us who had closed their stores putting big signs in the window saying, “Come onto our website…” and they were all, every single one of them moving onto Shopify. So we started looking into Shopify a lot more and discovered that maybe there was something there. But you know what, the second thing that was really interesting is that all the way leading up to the pandemic, there'd been this kind of belief that all retail inexorably moving online. That basically, once a consumer had bought something online, that was it. They weren't going back into a store.  Now in the UK, we are blessed with a lot of very impressive real-time statistics by organizations such as The ONS and they track all of the online and offline sales for the last five years, they've been showing quarter after quarter increase in the share of online, and by the time we hit the pandemic, online in the UK was way above what it was in the US. It was like 24% to 25% of all consumer spending was taking place online. We hit the pandemic and that number goes through the roof, 38%. McKinsey publishes its sort of big report about how basically online has just stepped forward 10 years in two months, and that's it. It's a point of no return, and then the first lockdown ended and it was really puzzling. We saw all of the stores around us fill up, and we started looking at the statistics and the share of online fell back to what it was just before that first lockdown. Now we had lockdown two and lockdown three, and each time the same thing happened: online shot up, but by the end of lockdown, online collapsed back to the level it was at before.  All of these consumers had found out how to go and buy their jeans or their milk or whatever it was online, but yet when the stores reopened, not for all of those purchases, but for many of them, they decided to go back into the store. Now, that told us for the first time that there was absolute proof that something we'd always believed was true, and that in the future, retail was going to be something that would be completely hybrid. It was gonna be, yes, a lot of it online, but also a lot of it in-store, and the stores that would survive were gonna be those that would've invested cleverly, smartly in the digital experience to make sure that the in-store experience was outstanding and that became our customer base, and they were the people that we started targeting. So all of those things happened, and then a third thing happened. The third of my two things. And that was the emergence of hybrid working. So initially full remote, then hybrid, and the bet that we took there was never gonna go away, that we would all spend more time working from home or elsewhere, but basically not from the city center than we had done before the pandemic, and that meant that there would need to be a shift in the fabric of retail and the structure of high streets around where people lived and that as there were many more places where people lived than their worst city centers, stores, brands, retail units would have to be smaller, and if they were gonna be smaller, then they'd need more digital to be able to offer the same range of services. And therefore our bet is that we are absolutely in line with all of those trends happening simultaneously. People are moving to Shopify, independent retailers, or retailers in general, learning how to go and digitize, and consumers wanting to go and shop more locally, and that's why we think this opportunity of in-store eCommerce is so exciting. Yeah, there's certainly been a lot of chatter about the idea that larger stores, like big boxes and so on, would increasingly become showrooms where you could go in and have a look at something, but then you can order online or whatever, and I would imagine that it extends itself down to even small businesses who can expand their product range without expanding their footprint.  Giles Corbett: Dave, it is fascinating. I was with the owner of a small independent store yesterday called Cherry Moon, and she's got a beautiful selection of designer clothes, and she has these two tables in the middle of the store that has beautiful jewelry by two designers and she was saying that the issue is that many of these pieces are unique or in very small quantities, and the designers can't afford to put all of their stock there in that one stop, so that means that they then can't exhibit it elsewhere, and all of a sudden, what Cloudshelf was helping her do was give these designers the ability to go and sell their entire range in her store without needing to commit all of the stock. And that idea is one that we've seen time and time again.  I was in a meeting this morning with a retailer we're rolling out with this week, and they have five of their own stores. They have 12,000 SKUs and they have 200 stockers, and their issue has always been being their website is ahead of their stockers, who go and see the website as taking business away from them. And yet with Cloudshelf, it completely turns the whole story around because now they can go and have Cloudshelf presenting all 12,000 SKUs in these small stockers with the stocker knowing that if somebody goes and buys a product via the Cloudshelf, it will be allocated back to their store and they will go and get the same benefit from it as though they'd actually sold the product physically from within the store without having had to hold the stock. Now, that's a pretty amazing proposition, both for the brand and for the retailer.  So you're rolling out with a customer right now. Where are you at? In reading some of the PR, it indicated you went through a series of trials, the company is not that old, and you went through a series of trials in London and Paris and are now deploying. So you're obviously past the testing stage and getting into operational mode.  Giles Corbett: Yeah, so we are 18 months old. We started off with a small group of retailers that we called basically friends for life, pilot retailers, and the deal for them was that they'd get Cloudshelf for free forever, they just needed to go and give us feedback on a weekly basis on how they were using it, how their customers were reacting, what else they wanted to go and see in the product, and we worked with them for a year, basically iterating and improving the product, and then indeed, as you said a few weeks ago, we actually made our app live on Shopify and announced that we were now ready for business and I'm delighted to say that in the short time since then, we've actually had some fantastic successes. So we're going to live in Ireland at the end of this week with two retailers. We're going to live in Scotland also this week. So there's definite movement there. There's been a lot of interest from many partners in France and we've just kicked off some discussions in Germany, and Dave, I really hope that in the next few months we'll be signing up our first retail networks in the US because this solution really scales and works everywhere.  And Canada where Shopify comes from. Giles Corbett: And Canada, of course, spot on. Now you know what? To go and help us work out where we needed to target, we built a really nifty tool that we call Store Finder. Basically, I go and put in any address anywhere in the world, and it produces a glorious map of every physical store in that area, and it tells me all of the ones that use Shopify, all the ones that use Salesforce, all the ones that use Magenta, et cetera, to go and power their backend. So a super useful tool for prospecting. But I can tell you this one thing. Shopify has done incredibly well at promoting itself in its home market because the number of stores in Canada that use Shopify to power their back head is quite phenomenal. So yes, we should definitely be there. So if I am a digital signage company, and I'm listening to this, and a software provider, and I target retail for, I don't wanna say meat and potatoes, digital signage, but for the other stuff around a store, are you a competitor? Or is there a way to work together? Are their parallel things? Giles Corbett: Interesting question, Dave. If you happen to be a provider of screens, we are a savior. We are working with a bunch of screen manufacturers and resellers now who basically tell us that when they are selling into retail, oftentimes retailers will come along and say, listen, we want these digital screens, some in store for our merchandising, some in the window, et cetera, and how do we create the content and the digital science company goes, ah, yeah, that's a bit of an issue.  Clearly, with Cloudshelf, we talked a lot about the interactive mode version on the kiosks a few minutes ago. We also have a second version that we called Display Mode. We haven't yet launched Display Mode. We're testing it still with retailers, but it will be launched in the next two, three weeks most likely, and what it does is it does the same kind of clever analysis of your product ranges and imagery, et cetera, as we use on the in interactive mode to go and create fantastic product-oriented visual displays. So you want to go and have something that goes and shows your various product ranges and et cetera in the store window to attract people to come in, Cloudshelf Display Mode will go and do that on the fly.  Now what we find, In the retailers we've been interviewing, is that for a number of them, that's fantastic and that's exactly what they want. But we also find a bunch of them that say you know what, actually we want to go into great videos. We want videos from the brands, et cetera. Now you wanna go and put in some, some simple banners, et cetera, Cloudshelf helps you do that automatically, but you wanna go have a very sophisticated loop with all kinds, other stuff other than relating to the products in the store. Then, you know what? You go and find a digital signage company that can go and helps create the CMS to go manage that loop and Cloudshelf can just come in and be part of that loop. So we're currently working with two CMS providers of digital signage and that's exactly what they plan to be using Cloudshelf for. So they will go and see the retailers. They'll say, listen, you can have the Cloudshelf version or you can have a Cloudshelf version and you can go and slot in, the local news, the Instagram feed, whatever else it is that you want to go and have next to it.  So if the website has something saying, “Baby clothing, 30% off, this week only” as a banner on the website, that could conceivably be curated automatically into a call to action poster for a screen doing that, but your platform's not gonna run a video wall on a big set of LEDs modules or something?  Giles Corbett: So what our platform will do is it will work out and it'll enable you to go and promote the sale. It will also select some of the best products and the products with the best images. It will go and show those. It will allow passing by, maybe you're walking past the store in the evening, and you go and see a bag that looks super nice. It will of course have a QR code on it. You can scan it and it will take you directly to that bag on your phone. If you buy it, it will be recorded as having come from that screen in that store. So all of our backend magic to help people sell more. But now working also on, on display-only signage. That's what Cloudshelf display mode is about. It's about helping retailers sell more. It's not their whole branding experience. That's something that they'll work with other people to create.  So what am I buying? Am I subscribing to this? Am I buying a software license?  Giles Corbett: You're subscribing to it. It's a SaaS model. So it's just like your subscription to Shopify. You go into Shopify, you add the Cloudshelf app, and you get one display for free for life. So you can try it out, there's no limit. You can use it as much as you want, and then as the number of stores expands, or the number of screens per store expands, you then just go and upgrade the license.  This was great and quite interesting. Can you just tell listeners where they can find out more online about your company? Giles Corbett: Absolutely. Just head over to Cloudshelf.ai and hopefully, you'll be able to find out everything you want about the company. If you don't, call me, I love speaking with people, at any time of day or any time of day or night. I love it.  All right, Giles, thank you very much.  Giles Corbett: Dave, thank you so much for the opportunity!

The Nonlinear Library
LW - Far-UVC Light Update: No, LEDs are not around the corner (tweetstorm) by Davidmanheim

The Nonlinear Library

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 2, 2022 6:25


Welcome to The Nonlinear Library, where we use Text-to-Speech software to convert the best writing from the Rationalist and EA communities into audio. This is: Far-UVC Light Update: No, LEDs are not around the corner (tweetstorm), published by Davidmanheim on November 2, 2022 on LessWrong. I wrote a tweetstorm on why 222nm LEDs are not around the corner, and given that there has been some discussion related to this on Lesswrong, I thought it was worth reposting here.People interested in reducing biorisk seem to be super excited about 222nm light to kill pathogens. I'm also really excited - but it's (unfortunately) probably a decade or more away from widespread usage. Let me explain. Before I begin, caveat lector: I'm not an expert in this area, and this is just the outcome of my initial review and outreach to experts. And I'd be thrilled for someone to convince me I'm too pessimistic. But I see two and a half problems. First, to deploy safe 222nm lights, we need safety trials. These will take time. This isn't just about regulatory approval - we can't put these in place without understanding a number of unclear safety issues, especially for about higher output / stronger 222nm lights. We can and should accelerate the research, but trials and regulatory approval are both slow. We don't know about impacts of daily exposure over the long term, or on small children, etc. This will take time - and while we wait, we run into a second problem; the Far-UVC lamps. Current lamps are KrCl “excimer” lamps, which are only a few percent efficient - and so to put out much Far-UVC light, they get very hot. This pretty severely limits their use, and means we need many of them for even moderately large spaces. They also emit a somewhat broad spectrum - part of which needs to be filtered out to be safe -/ - further reducing efficiency. Low efficiency, very hot lamps all over the place doesn't sound so feasible. So people seem skeptical that we can cover large areas with these lamps. The obvious next step, then, is to get a better light source. Instead of excimer lamps, we could use LEDs! Except, of course, that we don't currently have LEDs that output 222nm light. (That's not quite true - there are some research labs that have made prototypes, but they are even less efficient than Excimer lamps, so they aren't commercially available or anywhere near commercially viable yet, as I'll explain.) But first, some physics! The wavelength of light emitted by an LED is a material property of the semiconductor used. Each semiconductor has a band-gap which corresponds to the wavelength of light LEDs emit. It seems likely that anything in the range of between, say, 205-225nm would be fine for skin-safe Far-UVC LEDs. So we need a band-gap of somewhere around 5.5 to 6 electron-volts. And we have options. Here's a list of some semiconductors and band-gaps;. Blue LEDs use Gallium nitride, with a band-gap of 3.4 eV. Figuring out how to grow and then use Gallium nitride for LEDs won the discoverers a Nobel Prize - so finding how to make new LEDs will probably also be hard. Aluminum nitride alone has a band gap of 6.015 eV, with light emitted at 210nm. So Aluminum nitride would be perfect. but LEDs from AlN are mediocre./ Current tech that does pretty well for Far-UVC LEDs uses AlGaN; Aluminium gallium nitride. And when alloyed, AlGaN gives an adjustable band-gap, depending on how much aluminum there is. Unfortunately, aluminum gallium nitride alloys only seem to work well down to about 250nm, a bunch higher than 222nm. This needs to get much better. Some experts said a 5-10x improvement is likely, but it will take years. That's also not really enough for the best case, universal usage of really cheap disinfecting LEDs all around the world. It also might not get much better, and we'll be stuck with very low efficiency Far-UVC LEDs, at which point it's probably better to keep using Excimer lamps. But fundamental research into other semiconductor materials could a...