East Meets West 2019

Thanks to everyone who has been making this event happen.

As I’m relaxing on a Saturday night after a couple of days of working with awesome people, I wanted to share my experience with East Meets West 2019.

If this event is something new to you, the best way I can describe it is bringing in a pool of different types of people: innovators, investors, leaders, and entrepreneurs. The reason for the gathering of these people from Asia to the US? To share their perspectives and expertise in hopes to solve the world’s challenges.

I was fortunate to be a part of the Hands In Helping Out (HIHO) crew. For this event, we were tasked to take care of registration. It was nice to see some familiar faces on our check-in list and I always enjoy hanging out with my HIHO peeps.

Lucky me, I got to attend a good chunk of the panels during downtime and I did my best to soak up as much information as I can. Here are a couple key takeaways:

  • Rebecca Lynn from Canvas VC shared that it’s never too late to do what you want.
  • Margot Shmorak from Hostfully said, “do things that are not related,” and she emphasized that’s remarkably valuable if you end up becoming a leader. Also, never be ashamed of asking for help.

I found some really good value in a surprising panel. Listening to Max Holloway give his analysis on the future of sports, more specifically UFC was inspirational. The basic concept he bestowed upon the panel attendees is this: You need to have a personal brand to have people trust you and it’s not easy. He compared it to being a fighter, having to practice control and master your art.

Being a champion isn’t all about the flash and the glamour. Glad to hear Max Holloway talk about how there are responsibilities to being a champion. It’s up to you how you want to brand yourself.

There were tons of ideas exchanged throughout the event and Hawaii is probably one of the best places to do it because of the unique environment and challenges. To me, every interaction I had with everyone I made connections with is data to analyze and material to work with to solve big or even small problems.

If you attended, what did you learn? Let’s talk story, would love to chat with you and see what we can do to solve problems.

The Robots are Taking Over

Pixie taking a break at her home in Mardis Gras World. She is used to fulfill the company’s mass produce orders such as the cows in Chik Fil A’s national billboards.
A couple years ago, I met a person who was teaching grade schoolers how to think like a programmer. To me, that’s how we’re going to have to prep for the future. Any job you can think of can be replaced by AI and robots at some point. It’s just a matter of when and whether we are ready to accept it (most likely, when it becomes convenient for everyone).

More recently my wife and I went to New Orleans for our honeymoon, we checked out Mardis Gras World and took a tour. It was awesome to see the non-profit company staffed by plenty of artist who are drawing, sculpting, and painting the massive Mardis Gras floats. One of the highlights of the tour was the robot they recently acquired that can do amazing, detailed work.

Apparently there’s been more than enough concern about robots taking over the world that our tour guide had to clarify the company’s intention. The fear of replacing artist with robots is alleviated with the idea that robots are just another set of tools. It actually helps the resident artist free up time when they need their focus on preparing for mardis gras. In other words, why not automate when there is mass demand? An artist’s time is better spent being creative rather than doing repetitive work and who better to train for repetitive work than a robot. Kern Studio’s Mardis Gras World is a prime example of a company who is embracing the future and allocating resources efficiently. So efficient that I can leave you with the following lasting image:
Santa Clause and King Kong because why not?
 Thoughts? Feel free to comment below or holler at me.