Cultural Trends & Innovation: Overview


For the past two years I’ve noticed certain trends that been building up steam:

  • Minimalism
  • Customization & The rise of craftsmanship
  • Sustainable & locavore shopping
  • Paleo/Primal & The ‘Art of Manliness’
  • Geek/Nerd Culture

As you can see, there is a lot to cover – but these are all tied together under the common themes of:

  • Understanding what ‘quality’ means (durable goods v disposable goods)
  • Getting in touch with our roots
  • Questioning conventional wisdom & consumerism
  • and ultimately – living a better ‘sustainable’ life.

Instead of writing one long post, I decided the best way to tackle this is by breaking this up into a series of posts. This way I can briefly talk about each topic and have some space to discuss some really interesting products/companies/groups that are currently working in these areas.

While most people think of innovation as increasing technology and adding more bells and whistles, this is innovation that is inspired by the past. The crazy thing is, these insights have either not been spotted by larger companies, or they are being disregarded because they dont fit in with their current business models.

Either way, there are huge opportunities in this area, and I see it as a game changer that can shake up industries and be the future of innovation.


Joy of drawing – Draw Something App

Draw Something Vader

For the past week I’ve been having fun playing with the Draw Something App. It’s fairly similar to pictionary in that you play against other friend who have the app by drawing one of three words that are offered each round. *Tip – if you dont like the words, quit & restart the app and you’ll have new ones.

There are no rules – you can write out the name or be as abstract as you like, but the more often you can guess each others drawings, the more coins you can win. I’m not too sure how they determined coin value because some 1 coin words are harder than 3 coin words, but the whole point of earning more coins is that you can buy extra colors or bombs (which get rid of extra letters so you can guess the word that they are drawing).

I was having some fun with it at first, but I really started to enjoy this more once I was able to buy more colors!


  • Great for creativity and abstract thinking!
  • Challenge yourself by choosing the same words again and finding new ways to draw them.
  • Fun way to pass the time and work on your drawing skills


  • Confusing pop-culture references (how many people know the members of the   Wu-Tang, or how to even draw them?)
  • App is still glitchy and can crash or not register your drawing
  • Hard to draw on a small screen! Luckily enough I have a stylus that helps, but it’s not meant for drawing with so it can be tricky to get in all the detail I like.

You’ll definitely be hearing more about this App – it seems to be the new trend that is taking off. (*Tip – check out your phone manual to see how you can take a screen shot. For the Galaxus Nexus, you need to hold down the Volume Down button + Power button).

Along with the Vader drawing, here are a few others that I drew. As you can see, they progressively became better overtime as I had more colors to work with!