Archive for June, 2009

Electric CAR

Monday, June 15th, 2009


As seen on  ” Visions of the Future” with David Suzuki - CBC, the MIT City Car is working towards making the car more useful in tight city centers.  
A new vehicle design at MIT redefines the idea of automobile transportation. The ultra-compact prototype not only takes advantage of new technologies to solve problems like parking space and pollution, but also offers an alternative model for energy-efficient city transportation.
The Boston Globe
ENGAGE: Successfully developing and marketing new products is often the key to a company’s future growth, but despite decades of research on what works, the gap between the best performers and the also-rans is growing, not shrinking. And that gap starts at the top, says Scott Edgett, CEO and co-founder of Stage-Gate International, an innovation consultant based in Ancaster, Ont. He says good leaders must be able to articulate an innovation strategy (which is distinct from the business strategy), create a culture of risk, stand atop a repeatable product development process and get a good grip on the company’s product portfolio management.
SUPPORT: Leaders at the most successful companies don’t just approve ideas and then wait for the launch. Certainly, they should be involved in making the “go” or “no go” decision, as Edgett calls them, but they should also have “gate” meetings where they can review projects for both merit and resources. If a lot of money is being spent, execs may also get more involved by regularly reviewing the status of projects in the pipeline, and
whether they’re properly funded. “That’s different than micro-managing,” says Edgett. “They make a decision and then stand back and let the project team execute.”
KEEP SCORE: Top companies measure the success of new product launches as a percentage of sales, growth and/or profit. Nobody should expect a 100% success rate, but only negative cultures are afraid to talk about failure, says Edgett. Leaders can learn from product duds, and that process starts with a post-launch audit where any and all issues are discussed openly. Larger companies can afford to fail more often, but knowing when to cut your losses is key. “It’s like buying a bad stock,” says Edgett. “A pro knows when to sell it and reinvest somewhere else. An amateur holds on to it and prays hard that it will rebound, and keeps losing more money.”
by: ANDY HOLLOWAY, Canadian Business Magazine

ZENN Electric Car
So On a Side Note for Canadian Innovation in the Electric Car Industry, there is ZENN Motor Co. (TSXV: ZNN).
The Toronto-based electric car company, which just posted a wider-than-expected quarterly net loss of about $2 million, saw its share price jump almost 70% to an intraday high of $5.79 on April 23, thanks to positive test results related to permittivity in an energy storage system being developed by Texas-based EEStor Inc. ZENN, which makes low-speed, short-range electric cars, owns automotive rights to the EEStor system and hopes to use it to produce a high-speed, highway-capable vehicle.
GE : Imagination — Canadian Connection
Also noted that Geoffrey Beattie was named to the General Electric Board - Who will serve as an independent director.  GE which owns NBC Universal, is the world’s biggest maker of Power-plant turbines, Water Desalination, Medical imaging equipment, Aircraft Engines, Locomotives as well as GE Security cameras and electronics. Which means another voice for Canadian Innovation and Design in such a Global Company.

Globe and Mail