Thursday, October 18, 2012
7:45am Continental Breakfast
MAKERS: The New Industrial Revolution
Editor-in-Chief, WIRED magazine
author, The Long Tail, and Free:The Future of a Radical Price
in conversation with Krisztina Holly, engineer, entrepreneur, and innovation expert
500 South Figueroa Street
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Chris Anderson, author and Wired magazine editor contends that the collective potential of a million garage tinkerers and enthusiasts is about to be unleashed upon the economy, driving a new age of American manufacturing.
Today’s entrepreneurs, using open source design and 3-D printing, are using micro-manufacturing techniques to create a tsunami of products in small batches, often customized for specific customers, at higher margins. Anderson explains how this is the next big movement in the global economy. As the power of bytes transforms our power to make things, we will experience what he calls “the long tail of things.”
The tools of factory production, from electronics assembly to cheap and powerful prototyping tools to 3-D printers are now available to everyone; garage startups can manufacture products in batches as small as a single unit, or 10,000 or more. Anyone with an idea can set assembly lines into motion, with little more than a keystroke.
The days of large American manufacturers with huge expensive factories like General Electric or General Motors may be in their twilight. But thanks to crowdfunding and social financing at companies like Kickstarter and Quirky, entrepreneurs are no longer dependent on venture capitalists or the investment banks to finance their ideas. And with the global reach of the internet, entrepreneurs are able to sell their products to consumers at home and around the world instantly, while startups like Etsy create new platforms and markets to bring buyers and sellers together. These countless micro-manufacturers, based on open-source design and DIY manufacturing, will be the future of the global economy.
Chris Anderson is the editor–in-chief of Wired magazine, and author of the The Long Tail, and Free: The Future of a Radical Price.
Krisztina “Z” Holly is an engineer, entrepreneur, and innovation expert. Most recently, she served as vice provost for innovation at the University of Southern California and founding executive director for the USC Stevens Center for Innovation, a resource for faculty and students and a key driver in the Los Angeles innovation ecosystem. Krisztina previously served as the founding executive director of the MIT Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation, where she helped spawn nine startup companies from MIT research that raised over $40M in venture capital and has since become a global model for university innovation centers. Named one of the Champions of Free Enterprise by Forbes in 2010, she is a frequent lecturer and contributing columnist and is active in many board and advisory roles in U.S. and abroad, including the advisory council that advances President Obama’s national agenda in innovation and entrepreneurship (NACIE) and the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Fostering Entrepreneurship. She has a B.S. and M.S. in mechanical engineering from MIT.