Day 5 of A Futurist’s Silicon Valley Israel Safari

Scene change today as we move from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem to explore MedTech, health and wellness

First stop was Alyn Paediatric Hospital an incredible facility with an amazing history of innovation dating back to the days when few countries would sell to Israel, so they had to make it themselves, roll forward to today and that culture is baked into the DNA with each and every child receiving bespoke treatment and if the mainstream aid or product doesn’t suit them, or doesn’t exist, the hospitals’ engineering department will alter or make one, that does.

They’ve recently taken this ingenuity to the next level and turned themselves into an innovation hub, attracting child specific health related start-ups, fostering and supporting them and partnering with them to commercialise.

Our next stop was to Hadassah Hospital’s BioHouse a specialist incubator for digital health and medical start-ups. This is the place that for decades has been the inventor of some of today’s most prescribed pharmaceutical drugs.

We heard from some of their current crop of “next big things” including water and milk analysers; fertility treatment with 66% surety in current trialling; a wearable IOT patch that is constantly monitoring and transmitting your vitals and then an insight from their Director into the future works and the scope of the hospital.

We were then treated to a tour of the hospital, visiting the state-of-the-art mother and child ward, the Marc Chagall windows, and a rare tour of the specialist emergency ward kept on standby 24/7 especially for mass tragedies and disasters that sits inside an underground bunker that is hermetically sealed, impenetrable by bomb or gas and has its own indefinite water and energy supplies – terrifying!

Orcam, a small wearable device attached to an ordinary pair of glasses and used by the visually impaired to read and interpret the world was our last stop for the day and such a thrill. I’ve been covering and speaking about them since their inception in 2010 and to finally meet them, sit in their offices and hear about their next gen iterations was such a hoot.

The night ended at Mechane Yehuda market soaking in the night life, eating and drinking with the locals – great way to end a long day.

That’s it for my daily report on innovation Israeli style, tomorrow we begin 2 days of cultural visits and events.

If you want to her more about my trade mission to Start Up Nation Israel, the discoveries, technologies, people, trends and my thoughts on what all this means for our future, message me for an invite to a webcast I’ll be running in a couple of weeks.

#WishYouWereHere #Innovation #Israel #Future #FuturistSpeaker #StartUp #SiliconValley



Day 4 of A Futurist’s Silicon Valley Israel Safari

Can you imagine the changes to our transport system and roads and the increase in patronage if every bus and tram received priority on the road and never had to stop at a red light.

Our first stop yesterday at Axilion, not only imagined it, they built it. In Jerusalem their technology ensures that the light railway tram never stops anywhere along its 14 kilometres route for a red light, cutting a previous journey time of 80 minutes down to 49 minutes, resulting in an increase in patronage and revenue of 400%, a reduction in power use of 30%, and with the resulting efficiency the need for less fleet, resulting in a sale of 6 redundant trams, each sold for $60 million.

Their technology is currently being installed into New York’s infrastructure, with 5th Avenue its first destination and set to go live in February next year.

Moving on to Bright Innovations we heard a pitch from a software company that has taken an app store approach to providing internet of things software to fixed hard landscapes like roads and buildings, looking to provide the largest library of ready to use and easy to modify solutions.

Razor Labs was our next stop, to visit with a relatively new company, that earlier this year was voted Israel’s top provider of AI bespoke solutions. They blew us away with real live case studies of how a camera, or series of cameras, can monitor a situation 24/7 looking for what they call “false positives’”, things that are not normally there and then figure out what’s wrong with it and what should be done to fix it. Examples included watching violence erupt on the street and within 4 secs alerting the relevant authorities complete with a detailed history, photos, likely scenarios and resources need to stop the disturbance.

Our last stop for the day was a visit to Sight Diagnostics, who uses technology developed by MobileEye for autonomous car, to take 2 drops of blood, place them into a small lightweight totally portable testing machine and with 99% accuracy conduct comprehensive blood testing.

It doesn’t matter how many ideas we’ve seen and how many companies and people we visit we continue to be amazed, thrilled and scared.

Every idea is so mind blowing with possibilities. Each points so vividly to our future world, where what we currently do and have becomes obsolete and redundant.

Tomorrow we leave Tel Aviv and travel to Jerusalem to discover the future of medicine, health and longevity.

If you want more insights, want to be connected to any of these people, or just to chat about Israel’s innovation scene and perhaps find collaborators here for your great idea, DM me.

#WishYouWereHere #Innovation #Israel #Future #FuturistSpeaker #StartUp #SiliconValley









Day 3 of A Futurist’s Journey through Silicon Valley Israel

Any day that begins by you having to show your passport to armed security guards that entered the bus, who then proceed to place stickers on your phone’s camera, so you can’t take pictures, has all the hallmarks of an exciting day, and this did not disappoint.

We had arrived at Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), which develops and produces systems for the defence and commercial markets including satellites, space systems, defence systems, missiles, unmanned aerial systems (drones), autonomous vehicles and more.

Our top line briefing from was breathtaking in its scope and the ties back to Australian and our own defence systems extraordinary.

We were then taken on a tour to see first-hand the autonomous drones, how they’re built and fly and to hear that Israel has been using them for the past 20 years and that 60% of all flight hours flown by Israeli’s was in unmanned planes. We then ventured on to a hangar to watch the assembly and building of planes.

Our day continued on to an IHLS a private accelerator to hear pitches from 3 start up’s. It was fascinating to hear it’s founder say that this accelerator started its life a s a media company, publishing 4 article every day on security and defence, which then grew them a data base of interested parties, who then attended  conference they organised, at which they showcased start up’s, who were then invested in by the audience – and so grew a $100 million dollar global incubator.

We then travelled on to Elbit Industries one of the world’s largest military and commercial aerospace, land and naval systems manufacturers who supply army and police around the world including Australia, where they 3 offices and 200+ staff.

We were taken on a tour of online hacking and shown some of the incredible way’s rogue individuals, governments and authorities are able to listen in on our conversations and watch our actions and then shown some of the spy novel / sci fi tech they’re actually using to keep us safe.

Without doubt we all left that briefing absolutely terrified of what is being done, of how little privacy we really have, how easy it is to “hack” into anything and anybody and how incredibly cool the toys are that are being deployed by our army and police force in keeping us safe.

The day then rolled onto dinner at with the Australian Ambassador to Israel, His Excellency Ambassador Chris Cannan, who along with 30 other dignitaries told us of the work and ties between Australia an Israel.

Another mind-blowing day, so much learnt and so much seen, can’t wait to bring it all back home and start sharing, applying and building on it.

Tomorrow we explore Mobility, Transport, IOT, AI and big data – bring it on.

If you want more insights, want to be connected to any of these people, or just to chat about Israel’s innovation scene and perhaps find collaborators here for your great idea, DM me.

#WishYouWereHere #Innovation #Israel #Future #FuturistSpeaker #StartUp #SiliconValley









Day 2 – A Futurist’s Journey through Silicon Valley Israel Safari / Trade Mission

Mind-blowing is the only way to describe our day at Tel Aviv University (TAU).

We were welcomed by the international Dean, who told us about the 1.1 kilometres long university that houses 89,000 students, across 9 disciplines, all of whom collaborate to offer a true multi-disciplinary approach to education and we saw clear evidence of that in the students and academics we met, the departments we visited and the inventions / innovations and outcomes we saw.

We learnt that students start Uni at around 24 years of age, after completing their army, a gap year of travel (for most) and then having to sit and pass a 1-year Uni preparatory course, before they get on campus, as mature age students.

We also visited with some of the university faculties to see what they’re up to, meeting with and hearing from student start-ups tackling cyber security; 3D printing; water recycling (80% of all Israel’s water is recycled and reused, the highest in the world); sorting, labelling and fighting fake news and all of these are 100% practical running start-ups making $$$$ and selling their services and often their companies to the world’s largest companies.

We moved onto another start-up incubator / accelerator to meet founders and developers of incredibly diverse and innovative companies, products and services.

We heard from a company that has developed a way to naturally strengthen the root system of plants and increase yields and decrease water and fertiliser needs; another that has the most incredible ½ metre agricultural spike device you literally screw into the land – which then connects the soil to a satellite and begins to send you 24/7 100% accurate information into what, where, why and when the soil needs in terms of  nutrition / water / fertilisation.

Another has invented a 100% biodegradable plastic that breaks down in 6 months and can be, and is being, used by many of our large supermarket brands.

Our final start-up stop yesterday was an energy company generating electricity from the ocean’s wave.

At dinner last night we had a presentation from the world’s Number 1 cybersecurity expert (literally the guy that invented it here 25 years ago, who is now used by Google, Apple and others to establish and benchmark their cybersecurity operations and was in Australia last year consulting to our government) who scared the hell out of us, with what is being done, by whom and how this is only the beginning of what will now be a “forever” issue and to calm ourselves down we all headed off to the Batsheva dancers, to see Israeli creativity in human motion.

No wonder I’m tired.

Tomorrow we explore aerospace, home security and cybersecurity and meet with the Australian ambassador

If you want more insights, want to be connected to any of these people, or just to chat about Israel’s innovation scene and perhaps find collaborators here for your great idea, DM me.

#WishYouWereHere #Innovation #Israel #Future #FuturistSpeaker #StartUp #SiliconValley










Day 1 – The Diary of A Futurist’s Trade Mission Journey through Silicon Valley Israel

25 Australian business women and men have joined together to spend an immersive week in Start Up Nation Israel, in search of transferable innovation lessons that we can take back to our own businesses and communities.

On paper, Israel seems an unlikely place to find and study innovation. It’s a country of only 8.85 million people that officially came into existence 70 years ago (1948), but in terms of global innovation punches way above its weights.

Our first stop was at Australia’s Launching Pad Tel Aviv, 1 of 5 global offices the Australian Government has set up to provide Australians’ with quick and ready insights, networks’, contacts and access into growth regions.

Omri Wislizki, Tel Aviv’s Launch Pad’s CEO, introduced us to the notion of “start as fast as you can and slowly go faster” a cultural innovation mantra that seems to dominate the thinking of all local start-ups.

He took us on an exploration of the psyche of the Israeli entrepreneur, born in a country of conflict that is uncertain of its tomorrow and has had to, from day 1, innovate to provide food, water and safety for its ever-growing population.

He argued that this sense of urgency is born into every child, is honed at school and forged in compulsory army service.

This trilogy of formative year influences, stamps citizens with a sense of urgency, a belief that every person can and does make a difference and that that difference has to happen right now, because nobody’s sure about what tomorrow may bring.

Omri then took us through the 90-day program he offers to Australian businesses, the vast networks he is able to tap in to and the incredible outcomes and inroads Australian start-ups have already achieved in the short time the launch pad has been in existence.

We then travelled on to visit We Work (rumoured to be the next multi-billion-dollar Israeli unicorn tech company to sell) and Microsoft’s Scale Up centre to hear of the work they are doing in this region and the programs they offer.

Microsoft has a huge R&D department in Israel and also runs a 4 month Scale Up program working with start-up assisting them to hone, market and capitalise their innovations using the various Microsoft cloud-based programs.

We then travelled on to hear the most incredible briefing from Deloitte’s Lior Weizman, who in 60 minutes comprehensively told the story of Israel’s innovation sector, why it exists, who’s doing what with whom and why governments and corporations from around the world are literally falling over each other to get here and discover the next big tech thing.

The day finished with an incredible dinner complete with a briefing from Nadiv Tamir Director of International and Government relations at Peres Centre who gave us an insightful first-hand view of the politics of the regions, the stumbling block to peace and the possibilities ahead.

An incredible first day (let me know if you want more details about any of the places I visit or intros to any of the people).

Tomorrow we travel on to Tel Aviv University to explore Agritech / Greentech and Education – can’t wait.

#WishYouWereHere #Innovation #Israel #Future #FuturistSpeaker #StartUp #SiliconValley