Hierotopias, pickleball and an untact society

Welcome to this 38th issue of our newsletter “Weak Signals and other Trends”. Each week, I sift through hundreds of sources of inspiration to track where we’re heading.

You can subscribe to this weekly newsletter here to get it directly by mail.

This is what I noticed this week, thank you for reading and sharing this newsletter to those who look into the future.

Business models and blindspots

Looking at the familiar with “alien eyes” allows you to unlock new opportunities and new business models while avoiding blindspots.

Toyota owners have to pay $8/mo to keep using their key fob for remote start. Reinventing fast fashion. The Latest Farm Product: Carbon Credits. Ghost Kitchens Are Proving to Be a Messy Business. Apple announced self-repair program. Netflix entered the gaming space.

Changing currents. New York is running out of cream cheese because of a cyber attack. China’s massive Belt and Road Initiative is moving steadily into Africa.

We have scheduled the dates for our “Strategic Blindspots” course which will take place in Montreal, Canada, on January 18th and 19th, 2022. There are two seats left.

Our future

Predictions for Journalism 2022. What ‘The Matrix’ Got Wrong About Cities of the Future. Why people are spending millions of dollars on JPEGs. Flavor of the year. Fjord trends 2022. AI to debate its own ethics. Pollinator park. Functional Yogurt.

We provide in-house training to executive teams and board to feed their strategic planning process and investigate future scenarios. More here.

Weak signals

Weak signals are indicators of a change, a trend or an emerging risk that might become significant for the future. They allow us to run hypothesis, expand our thinking, and challenge assumptions. How will you interpret those in your industry or field of expertise?

A 2021 Signals Inventory. Workers Are Using ‘Mouse Movers’. Nike just bought a virtual shoe company. Teachers dash for cash. Salad in a bar. The craze for tungsten cubes. Emoji frequency. The city of Miami announced its own currency, MiamiCoin. Pickleball is experiencing a renaissance. Tyson Foods plans to automate meat plants. South Korea cuts human interaction in push to build ‘untact’ society. Sustainable food on wheels. In hatboxes, pouches and bags lie the items that define us.

Seven types of serendipity and this quote:

‘One thing a person cannot do, no matter how rigorous his analysis or heroic his imagination,” the Nobel laureate Thomas Schelling once observed, “is to draw up a list of things that would never occur to him.”

Join us to discuss those trends and signals on Clubhouse. We have a panel of futurists who discuss each Saturday mornings at 9am what those signals might mean.

Down the rabbit hole

This is a new section. It highlights a subject that lead me to many useful threads, or a single site, that opened many doors.

This week, I explored the last issue of Wired and the simulations of the future.

On our radar

I was with clients in Switzerland this week, and we took a deep dive into the future of work: Companies Are Using Webcams to Monitor Employees Working From Home. Europe studied Electronic Monitoring and Surveillance in the Workplace. MGM Resorts Job Seekers Can Try Out Roles in VR Before Starting. 18 Trends That Will Shape Our Careers in 2022. Gen Z Is Planning Early Retirement. Microsoft Seeks to Stem Employee Departures Through ‘Career Check-ins. What to Know Before You Take a Job in a Hybrid Workplace.

Hodgepodge discovery

Articles for the curious mind and the polymaths …

The Mother of All Demos. How we learned how to speak emoji. Statistical Imaginaries: An Ode to Responsible Data Science. The vibe economy. Single’s Day. The Humble Beginnings of Today’s Culinary Delicacies.

Feeling Good

Ethiopia’s forest churches. Hop on a city tour. The Sounds That Make Tokyo Tick. The Museum of Lost Memories. The Leaked Recipes Cookbook.


Subscribe to Trends! And Weak Signals newsletter

Subscribe on Substack