Reading through closed books by Julian Kramer

Spatial resolution, spectral contrast, and occlusion are three major bottlenecks in current imaging technologies for non-invasive inspection of complex samples such as closed books. This new process empowers the time-of-flight capabilities of conventional THz time domain spectroscopy and combines it with its spectral capabilities to computationally overcome these bottlenecks.

Making Coding tangible for Kids - Project Bloks by Julian Kramer

Learning how to code can be quite intimidating, but the moment you make something abstract and playful - and tangible it can teach you all the relevant logics and understanding you need... 


So what is Project Bloks? It's a research collaboration between Google, Paulo Blikstein (Stanford University) and IDEO with the goal of creating an open hardware platform that researchers, developers and designers can use to build physical coding experiences. As a first step, Google has created a system for tangible programming and built a working prototype with it. 

Check out the Project here and read more here

NFC & Cloud Vision Connected Malibu bottles by Julian Kramer

Back in 2014 I worked with Pernod Ricard at the Google Creative Academy in Mountain View - two years later they are bringing one of their ideas to life - a connected bottle!
Malibu being a summer drink that people take out and about the NFC-interaction allows "users" to win in a competition, get music mixes, see cocktail recipes etc. 
The most interesting aspect is that user can NFC-touch the bottle to share a snapshot with a custom messaging - AND the service uses  Google Cloud Vision to determine the right setting by analyzing the content of the picture. Pretty cool!

Read more here and here at Marketingweek


They were taking the idea of a "direct, digital touchpoint for consumers" quite serious :D.

Great to see how the idea has evolved - and humbling to see that things still take about 2 years to get built! Lets hope the campaign is a success so we get to see more cool marketing innovation.

Kudos to my friends and colleagues at THE ZOO!

The Future of Medicine by Julian Kramer

I was just asked by a colleague what I think the future of medicine might be... and I've summarized my views on this the following way.

The 3 Pillars of Future Medicine

1. Quantified Self: 

People will be starting to track and real-time monitor multiple body functions from sleep to blood pressure, to hormones etc. in their bloodstream. Think of your fitbit on steroids. And yes, i said bloodstream... This leads to a constant monitoring of vital signs etc. - kind of an Intensive care monitoring e.g through your smartwatch...

2. Big Data diagnostics

These generated datasets can be crunched by AI / ML-Systems to spot known patterns and recognize new ones from seemingly disconnected datapoints to understand previously unknown interdependencies & correlations of symptoms. This will allow early-stage diagnostics and the deployment of preventive medication to cure a disease before a full condition outbreak, making it easier to treat.

3. Hyper-personalized medicine

Through better understanding of the individual constitution medicine, drugs & treatments can be administered on a hyper-individual level on a patient per patient per daily constitution basis. Right now we are taking 100mg aspirin, because it doesn’t kill us, and usually works for an adult of a certain size, weight and constitution - BUT i might need a perfect dose of 112mg or 54mg…. Think how important that will be on more severe treatments. This hyper-personalization will be possible.

 

Disclaimer: I am by no means a doctor, but I come from a family of doctors who were always exploring and pushing the edge of whats new in medicine - so the shift from curing to preventing will fundamentally change the way doctors work, assisted by live-monitoring, AI diagnostics and how we educate them. 

Machine Learning - Google Brain Residency Program by Julian Kramer

Google has announced a Residency Program for Machine Learning with the Google Brain Research Team for researchers on Artificial Intelligence. 

"The Residency is a 12-month role designed to jump-start your career in deep learning. Residents will work with scientists from theGoogle Brain Team. The goal of the residency program is to help residents become productive and successful deep learning researchers. The residency program is similar to spending a year in a Master's or Ph.D. program in deep learning."

  •  Applications until January 13, 2017
  • The program starts in July 2017 and runs for 12 months

Apply here or reach out to me. 

Also check out the amazing research Hub with lots of papers & publications.

Start-Ups - apply now for Digital Top 50 Awards! by Julian Kramer

Startups - Apply now for the Digital Top 50 Awards!

Google, McKinsey and Rocket Internet have teamed up to launch the Digital Top 50 Awards to recognize Europe’s thriving tech scene and to honor its most promising start-ups and scale-ups. Winners will be awarded in 5 categories: top B2B start-up, top B2C start-up, top B2B scale-up, top B2C scale-up, and top “tech for social impact” company. The competition will be judged by a jury of leading figures in tech, business and academia, and finalists will be invited to “Slush 2016” in Helsinki, where the winners will be announced at the Digital Top 50 Awards ceremony.

Winners will be granted a cash prize of 50.000€ or receive valuable support through exposure to leading professional advice and structured consulting and coaching programmes. Google, McKinsey and Rocket Internet will share knowledge and experience, both working with you and connecting and exposing you to the community of top decision-makers and investors out there.

Applications are open to all eligible companies from the EU and EFTA at www.dt50.org until October 1st, 2016. Apply now.

Kids can learn to code with chocolate now... by Julian Kramer

Playing with food has never been "more encouraged" than with this cool project called "GLICODE" from Pocky and my old friends from Google/Zoo APAC... Kids get to use their treats to learn the fundamentals of coding in an experimental way.

An Interesting approach for a country that thinks about making "Code-Education" mandatory at schools to stay competitive. (more here)

Read more here: The Verge

 

Making Art & Culture Accessible by Julian Kramer

Our world is full of amazing and inspiring works of human art - but it is often also inaccessible - geographically, financially, politically. And even if you can get in front of one, noone will let you take a microscopically close look at his Monet. 

Luckily there is an app for that - for free :). 

Download the Google Arts & Culture App for iOS and Android for free and start exploring. Maybe even with a cardboard.

Throwback Digital Photography by Julian Kramer

DigitalRev just released a "Cheap Camera Challenge" video with Matt Uhser, using a 16-year old Nikon Coolpix 995 camera, that happened to be my first digital camera (aside from the Leica digilux I occasionally stole from my dad).

The video is actually not the most entertaining one from the series (I highly recommend you to check out the whole playlist on YouTube), but it brought back some fun memories and it made me realize how incredibly experimental digital camera manufacturers were back in the days. 

Nikon Coolpix 995 (2001)

Nikon Coolpix 995 (2001)

The crazy lens-tilt system made the Coolpix 9xx series a lot of fun to experiment with and go for new angles that you just couldn't do before with that ease.

And if you also look at the previously mentioned Leica digilux 1, it basically was a portrait formfactor camera just like most people are using their cell phone nowadays to snapchat (horrible) vertical video.  

Leica digilux (1998)

Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love the formfactor and punch my RX1RII delivers, but i sometimes wish electronic manufacturers would be a bit more experimental and playful in their designs nowadays...

The 4 Levels of Listening for Innovation Skills by Julian Kramer

A great talk from Otto Scharmer, Cofounder of the MITxu.lab and author of the book from Egosystem to Ecosystem on the 4 levels of listening.  

Here are my 2 takeaways:

One of the easiest tools that you can implement right now to keep innovating and challenging "your status quo" is this method described in Level 2 Factual Listening:

Darwin carried a book in which he noted all the observations that contradicted his beliefs and challenged his assumptions - to help him to evolve his own theories.

Level 4 Generative Listening is much harder to do, but where a lot of the true ideas for groundbreaking innovations happen: Listening and observing where you or your counterpart actually aspires to be in the future. 

Sounds esoteric, but it makes an awful lot of sense: Once we understood the facts, noticed the possible digression from our own confirmation biases, empathically understand the emotional aspects and then understanding how this all contributes to an aspirational projection of self - Its nearly impossibly to come up with a product / idea or service that doesn't solve true human needs and desires. 

Easier said than done though :).

Automatic Video Editing from Multiple Social Cameras by Julian Kramer

Disney Research Labs are pushing whats possible in video editing. When everybody carries a camera in their phone - Video Editing from Multiple Social Cameras is best left to new algorithms!

Just think about all the implications for the ocean of video abundance that we all produce, but never get to edit for our lack of expertise, inaccessibility of existing tools or time and effort required. 

Now combine that with shared photoalbums and we are talking.

Making the invisible tangible - Happy Atoms! by Julian Kramer

When I was a child I was endlessly fascinated by the thought of a chemistry set - and I always wanted one for Christmas. Being well aware that I might either burn the house down or at least destroy the carpet I never got one. I had to wait forever to learn that chemistry class in school actually doesn't let you experiment with fluids that turn from red to green and then explode in a big fireball... No, you spend a s***load of time staring at styrofoam models of what might be an electron and then solve mathematical equations about how some C's might connect to some H's.

It was dull, boring and I never really understood the deeper concept of chemistry because it was all hidden behind a layer of math and abstract theories. It was like being shouted at: Screw you, visual people, this is not for you!

THEN I discovered this: Happy Atoms, a gamified version of Build your own Atoms that you can connect like legos and an Augmented Reality App companion, that lets you explore all the facts and details about the atoms you built.

Finally someone managed to combine the power of AR & digital education tools, playful experimentation and bring this very theoretical field into something tangible, enjoyable and visible. Check out what they do here:

ost people will tell you "everything was better in the olden days". No, hell no. I wish I was a child growing up with these learning tools. If you can, please support Happy Atoms. 

Support their Indiegogo Campaign here.