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The End of Ownership: The Zero-marginal-cost Economy [Sept. 7, 2014]

Submitted on
Sunday, September 7, 2014
,
The Next Web

By Dries Buytaert

Society is undergoing tremendous change right now — those of us who enjoy services like Uber and Kickstarter are experiencing it firsthand. The sharing and collaboration practices of the internet are extending to transportation (Uber), hotels (Airbnb), financing (Kickstarter, LendingClub), music services (Spotify) and even software development (Linux, Drupal).

While the consumer “sharing economy” gives us a taste of what it’s like to live in a world where we own less, perhaps there’s an equally powerful message for the business community. Using collaboration, companies are dramatically reducing the production cost of their goods or services.

Welcome to the zero-marginal-cost economy, a way of doing business where ownership of a core process is surrendered to community collaboration. In economic terms, the cost of a product – or a “good” – can be divided into two parts.

The first part is a “setup cost,” which is the cost of assembling the team and tools needed to make the first unit. The second part is called the “marginal cost,” or the cost of producing a single, additional unit.

For decades, competitive markets have focused on driving productivity up and marginal costs down, enabling businesses to reduce the price of their goods and services to compete against each other and win customers.

A good example of this approach is Toyota, which completely reinvented how cars were made through lean manufacturing, changing the entire automotive industry.

Japanese cars were produced much more quickly than their American counterparts, created via traditional assembly lines in Detroit, ultimately driving down the final cost for consumers and shrinking margins for companies like Ford. Software development methodologies like the lean startup methodology and Kanban are modeled after the Toyota production line and have made software development more efficient.

Today, the focus is changing. Within service industries like hospitality and transportation, new entrants are succeeding not by optimizing production, but by eliminating production cost altogether.

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Why should I go to DrupalCon? - The benefits of being there

I had the tables turned on me at DrupalCon Portland and got interviewed by Ray Saltini from Blink Reaction. He asked me some great questions about Drupal, and especially why you should come to Drupal community events like DrupalCon.

Trust is the Key to Social Collaboration

I just finished reading Extreme Trust: Honesty as a Competitive Advantage by Don Peppers and Martha Rogers, and it got me thinking about the social collaboration efforts I have worked on the past couple of years. Though the book has an external focus in regards to how social networking is forcing companies to be more transparent with its customers, I think the same principles apply to the collaboration between colleagues within a company.

Website Goals and Community Management

It seems that everyone is implementing a Enterprise 2.0/Social Business/Social Media tool inside the enterprise these days. Generally these tools are being implemented to enable better collaboration across the organization or, to be cynical, to be hip to the latest IT trend because of Gen-Y’s entrance into the work force. In the time honored tradition of the “If you build it they will come” IT attitude, IT departments are implementing tools without considering how users will interact with them.

Change Mangagement with a Radical Site Redesign

The past couple of months have been exciting for the team connected with the Defense Security Cooperation Agency’s GlobalNET project. We have launched a number of different centers on the new platform, and so far response to the new system has been positive. This has been a large milestone that has taken us a year of hard work to accomplish. Our biggest challenge in going live was helping existing users make the transition from the old system to GlobalNET.

CompuCom-led executive forum identifies operational efficiency and cloud computing as top issues for CIOs in 2012 [Oct 27, 2011]

Submitted on
Thursday, October 27, 2011
,
The Wall Street Journal

CompuCom Systems, Inc., the leading IT outsourcing specialist, hosted a three-day forum with 25 executives from IT organizations across vertical markets. Jay Batson, Acquia VP and Co-Founder, explored how social collaboration brings together businesses, partners, and clients, assists with recruiting, and facilitates ideation during a panel discussion at the event.

Using Enterprise 2.0 to Collaborate Around the World

Acquia, along with our partners Merlin International, Navigation Arts, Forum One Communications, and VML, is currently working with the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) in the Department of Defense (DoD) to deliver a collaboration platform based on the latest Enterprise 2.0 concepts. The new platform is in support of two Initiatives at the DSCA: Partnership for Peace Information Management System (PIMS) and the Regional International Outreach (RIO) program. “The Partnership for Peace (PfP) is a major NATO initiative introduced in January 1994.

Using OpenScholar for Collaborative Research

Open source is not only a growing movement in the software industry. Open source philosophies are being adopted in many other verticals such as education, government, and scientific research. One recent example is in collaborative drug research.

The "New" New Way to Innovate on McKinsey's Technology Trends

McKinsey’s latest quarterly includes an updated list of top technology trends to watch. The list was first published over two years ago and described eight tech-business trends that were reshaping strategy across industries. Since then, the social web has exploded, creating a quandary for executives on “how to help their companies capitalize on the transformation under way.”