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Fast Change Around Us Archives - Garrett's Change Management Blog

Fast Change Around Us-Drone Ships?


Driverless Cars had me thinking about behavioral (and cultural) changes.

Now this: “Driverless Cars, Meet Captainless Ships: Autonomous Vehicles To Take To The Sea

This actually makes more sense.

One would assume less traffic on the open sea. Ships move slow and straight which seems safer.

There are a few differences that are interesting. Maritime laws make “completely” autonomous ships illegal. For cars California plans on having the laws there before the cars. Driverless cars take away jobs indirectly (some lawyers, some part of the insurance industry, energy, etc.). Driverless ships take away jobs directly.

It turns out this autonomy will help since there is a labor shortage for shipping personnel (who must spend long stretches away from family and home). Driverless ships are, in a way, a solution. Although the few employees left on a ship will have to do the most menial of work while the interesting navigation and ship control will be done from shore (or by machine).

(Because I just can’t help looking at some change from a funny angle before I accept it: can you play chicken with a ship drone? Does it always “chicken out” so you could use a small boat to make it change directions willy-nilly?).

I am not sure what behaviors will change will this upgrade of drone ships to “driverless”, but could we get to a point where there are no drivers for anything that moves?

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Fast Change Around Us- Disappearing Buildings

I am not sure if this falls under Fast Change or crazy, innovative and creative design.

Apparently there is a trend now to make buildings as close to invisible as possible.

Disappearing Buildings

Here are four examples:


Curbed has the most amazing example at “Here Now: 14 Vanishing Buildings From Around the Globe”. Scroll down to the last image in the serious and play with the pull bar.

The explanation:

“…Incheon International Airport tower, soon mankind will literally be able to make skyscrapers disappear—no muss no fuss. Tower Infinity, designed by GDS Architects, will rise 450 meters (1476.38 feet) in the air and feature “a cutting-edge LED façade system that allows visual information behind the skyscraper to be captured and simultaneously projected from the tower’s surface.” The building, in turn, will “blend into the background like an enormous, crystalline chameleon.”

This is funny for me because just the other day I started working on taking pictures from my desk out the window to stitch together and then spread across my three monitors. I thought it would be so cool to almost eliminate my monitors to see what I would if they were not in the way. And here they do the same thing with a skyscraper!

So our Fast Change Around Us future is a world with buildings that we can’t see until we run into them. Oh and some very, very scared birds.

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Fast Change Around Us- Modern Outhouse

Every time I see one of those majestic pictures of monasteries and strange places to live in the sky I think, “no plumbing equals no bathrooms”. I’m not sure I want to know the answer to the hidden question for this place:


Fast Change Around Us has happened again. There is a solution for that substance that will not be named.


Call it the Solar Poop Fryer (oops named the substance).

This guy is “testing” it!

And this guy is holding the fried remains!

That little charcoal piece is sanitary and your (or somebody’s) garden will love it.

Almost makes you want a cabin off the grid to buy one, test it out and grow a vegetable garden with a story. (Although in keeping with the need to be patient with people when it comes to change you might want to hold off on the back-end story for a while).

All kidding aside when you have a Fast Change that could benefit upwards of 2.5 billion people (those without proper sanitation in  the world) that couldn’t possibly have too many resistors, you have what might be called non-disruptive change. Or maybe positive-disruptive change?

From garden to mouth, out, fried and back to the garden. The modern outhouse is on its way.

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Fast Change Around Us- Hydrogen Cars

OK, now I can’t keep up.

With change, especially technology that connects with culture, sometimes we go “forward” and and sometimes “backward”.

So it seems to be with the car thing: regular cars that sucked the dinosaurs in and out of their tailpipes to hybrids that slowed the flow, to electric cars that got quiet and efficient, to Tesla (beautiful and longer range electric) to driverless cars. That is the all forward part.

As I write this my driverless car post sits in the queue. I can’t even get a hyperlink yet. Not to cheat, this post comes after- the actual chronological order the two were revealed through RSS feeds.

Hydrogen Cars


Move over Tesla.

Is this a jet or a car?

Quartz can give you the scoop: “Why hydrogen-powered cars will drive Elon Musk crazy”.


The state of California will spend $20 million a year to finance the construction of 100 fueling stations.

300 mile ranges, same as electric and basically the same as gas.

Cleaner emissions than gas.

Plentiful fuel.

The change part of this:

Does the car of the future, or at least its fuel type, finally get decided? Do gas stations just convert to hydrogen? Oh my… what happens to those heavily subsidized oil and gas companies (not to worry there will probably always be jet fuel)? How strange will it be to go to a “gas powered car museum” twenty or thirty years from now?

So can we close this Fast Change car loop now? Sometime soon we will have hydrogen-powered driverless cars that will be as popular and pretty as a Tesla.

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Fast Change Around Us- Driverless Cars


First it was the thrill hybrids, then all electric, then Tesla and free “gas”, now it appears somewhere out in the future we won’t even be driving.

Thanks Google (at least for the exposure).

A few years back a Google car slowly crept by (now I realized that was my chance to be pictured on Google maps, bummer). I was really tempted to run out in front of it to see what happened. Imagine how freaked out the “passenger” would have been? (or is that an “old” prank by now?).

California is working to have laws in place (beyond those already used for those Google cars) for driverless cars by 2015!

Wait, that’s NEXT year.

Obviously we will not all be doing crossword puzzles in our own cars on the way to work sometime after next year. But we might sometime a little after next year.

For Hybrids and Electric Cars the change and behavior list was relatively small. In fact the only important environmental change I could think of in my post was the joy of silent cars. Which got nixed quick with rules to actually make the cars NOT quiet.

For driverless the changes would be huge. This is like cruise control taken to the extreme.

Some tidbits:

This could kill insurance companies. I too feel your joy over that one.

No traffic lights. Less police officers (like that guy who zooms around my town every morning writing soccer-mom-tickets). Less government revenue (I see that as a bad side, but a potential savings at the same time). Utilities would lose money- think about it, driverless cars don’t need streetlights. Ambulance chasers, cab drivers, truckers?, anyone who makes money on the detriments of cars (like accidents)…

Really this is huge, disruptive change.

Driverless cars will change more than just what we do with our commute time.

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Fast Change Around Us- Yes Even Smoke Detectors


Is fast change for something as lowly as a smoke detector worth 3.2 billion dollars US? Even if we throw in a very smart thermostat?

That remains to be seen.

Google spent a lot of money on Nest so there is fast change to come.

What is fascinating about the smoke alarm part of this story is how long it took for someone to turn a small appliance that is arguably one the most hated battery operated circles found in a modern home.

Many, many batteries have been pulled out after gut wrenching reactions to false alarms.

I can vouch for that. Despite the knowledge that a home without smoke detectors is an unsafe place (I had a girlfriend who had two of her houses burn down in childhood- she seemed to take pleasure in that piercing scream) all of ours are unhooked. They are (uh, were) hardwired and I swear they got into all the other systems in the house and just plain possessed it.

Every time we have a mechanical problem I blame it on the smoke alarms.

Imagine my glee when I saw the Nest alarm at our local Home Depot!

Get out (pun intended) an alarm that looks good? And one you can wave a hand under to stop the screaming? (yes I know you can do that with newspaper with the old one, but that is usually what has caused the alarm to go off in our house).

There is a very interesting change element to this.

The thing is expensive- $129 here in the US. Loading up the house could push you over a thousand bucks if you grab the thermostat too.

How much you wanna bet these things are all OVER the place in 5 years?

To see the two sides to this, those who would stick with those old hated alarms and those who will be sucked in by the siren song (ha, couldn’t resist) of this fancy newfangled alarm, go to, “Nest Gives the Lowly Smoke Detector a Brain — And a Voice”. I found it hard to pick a side.

I do need some new smoke alarms though…

Sometimes it takes forever for Fast Change. Finally someone has taken on the hated smoke alarm.

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Fast Change Around Us-Electricity Everywhere


Today’s Fast Change falls into the, “this is totally practical” category.

So you have a hybrid or, better, a fully electric, car and you neglected to plug it in last night. In the future (as in now, of course the Google execs are already using their own version), not to worry, the MANHOLES will charge your car! So basically every time you sit at a stoplight or park your car in just the right place, you get some extra juice.

This is funny because a few months back I put my WII remote on the conductive charging pad and thought, “how cool would it be to do this with an electric car”.  Footfall for electricity was my other thought that ended up happening.

I know where you are going with this manhole cover for power thing. That would be way too expensive. Just another thing to add to the price of my next car. Who is going to pay for the electricity? I can just imagine the jerk who won’t move on a green light.

All change starts with an idea. Defining the idea begins the change process. When one or two people beside the idea originator say, “that’s cool” or “that just might be possible” actual change has begun. Fast Change Around Us- Wireless Manhole Covers.

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Fast Change Around Us-Perfect Pizza Cutting


It had to happen.

Pizza cutting absolutely HAS to be accurate.

When I create a pizza from scratch (even the dough- impressed?) I want my slices to come to the guests in front of the TV Laser Perfect.


(Actually not, but I think I need this tool).

Finally we have the tool for that.

Sometimes change just does not come Fast Enough.

Behold the laser pizza cutter!!

I wonder if we could use this or at least something with laser on it for change?
  • Cut through the pile of solutions to get to root causes.
  • Aim the dot at that one stakeholder that is bound to hold this thing up and then cut a path to participation.
  • Cut out all of the things that are historical and extraneous to the future (in perfect disposable slices).
  • Cut off a big slice of executive pay- this disparity really has gotten extremely ridiculous.
  • Cut out a slice of down time for everyone in perfectly spaced increments.
  • Cut out all the overlapping technology.
  • Cut out the middle people (I guess I should be careful with that- theoretically I am a form of a middle person).
  • Cut out the whining, into little teeny slices that we could just fling into the wind.

The Laser Pizza Cutter! We SO needed this. Fast Change Around Us has come through again.

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Fast Change Around Us- The Stylus


On my return from a speaking engagement recently my kids made a bee line to my brand new conference bag. (You know the one that goes straight to the goodwill pile). Kids KNOW there will be tchotchkes in there! My oldest found the conference pen that, “OMG has a stylus, that is SO cool!”.

She spent a day or two running around with that stylus pen texting all her friends.

It turns out the stylus has some history:

  • Egyptians used reeds from the Tigris and Euphrates rivers for styli. In some ways clay tablets are not so different from screens.
  • Up to the late Middle Ages you could use a stylus on a wax tablet.
  • Styli are used for pottery, tracing designs on carbon paper and embossing.
  • Remember those styli that gave us music?

And, of course, the kind we think of, computer styli.

First the stylus was an actual writing implement, then drawing got added as a use, computers came along and it became a tapping device, then drawing got added, now you can tap and draw (and letter if you want) on the same device.

The fast change for the stylus used for a phone is kind of comical:

I remember my first Treo had an oh-so-cool slot on the side of the phone to store the stylus!

Then styli disappeared (when was the last time you saw someone use one?).

Phones had to have styli because they were so small, then screens got bigger so they were not needed. But the keys stayed about the same size (why is it that women seem to be texting more than men? Gender or finger size?). It takes forever to hunt and peck (an antiquated term for typing) with a stylus, but is much more accurate than the three-key-with-one-finger method.

First those styli were cool. Then they were not. Now they are, but only if you are 12. (and not likely for very long at that).

Fast Change Around Us- the stylus that appears, disappears and reappears.

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Fast Change Around Us- Life in Space


When social media and advanced technology (going to space is high on the advanced list) come together we have Space Fast Change Around Us. Chris Hadfield, a Canadian astronaut, has created a video series to help answer all those living in space questions. I am not one to go to videos (I would rather search text and picture based- videos seem too slow and are too time consuming). But…

This series makes me understand how people can get completely absorbed in videos and burn an incredible amount of time. We have permission for this series though because we are learning right?

We all need to know how to:

Brush our teeth in space

Sleep in space

Wash our hands in space

Cook spinach in space (to have Popeye energy for all those spacewalks)

Make a peanut butter & honey sandwich in space

Because I know you are curious: How to use the toilet in space

This is Fast Change Around Us: the ability to look at a long list of videos of people living in space. What’s next, virtually accompanying a group of astronauts on a Martian picnic?

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