Data is just a fancy word for logistics and other retail revolutions

This has probably been done before because anybody that has access to Wikipedia must have been able to put this together.

Apparently we are living in exponential times. Positives are bigger (smaller), better, faster. Negatives are decreasing at the same exponential rate as well, despite what some scare mongering media wants you to believe.

For the last four years (this month I celebrate my anniversary) I have taken my patchwork of generic knowledge and plastered it onto a new field, retail. I would hope to get new, interesting solutions or opinions for my customers and then my customers would feel happy or satisfied enough to reimburse me and I have taken their business forward.

But what is the core of what I have realised over the last 4 years. I have been on the digital frontier for over 20 years and notice lately just how fantastically intelligent EVERYBODY has become in relation to 20 years ago. From my 13 year old daughter who does a school thesis on The Golden Ratio and Fibonacci numbers, to my mother in law who handles a mobile phone like Michael Schumacher handles an F1 racing vehicle. Nobody told her that she holds in her hand more combined global competence than than the whole USA and Russian space programs up to the 1990s together.

And the more my thoughts have become ordered the more my theory of revolutions have taken shape. Knowing what I know about the Internet somebody else has already thought of this somewhere I am just expressing a collection of inputs.

Data is just a fancy word for logistics and other retail revolutions

Revolution 1

World War 2 started it all. I started reading up about aquaponics and realised that feeding and supplying soldiers halfway around the world meant that Army Quartermasters needed to be masters of management specifically on making sure that a Private in the Guadalcanal in the South Pacific got three meals a day, medicine, ammunition and other support that would mean that he could do his job.

Revolution 2

Sam Walton, the founder of Walmart started his operations in the aftermath of the second world war when there were not just a glut of returning men but also a glut of returning competence which meant that all those key learnings from the logistics operations were pushed into the retail world. Wal-Mart became a organically driven logistics engine with outlets for products.

Revolution 3

But a few other things were also moving forward and one of them was computing. So far the effectivity of your logisitcs was only as strong as the weakest human in your supply chain management and Business Developers were always looking to automate the process as much as possible. Its with this in mind that we got to the rise of the mainframes, specifically IBM and the Seven Dwarves. Retailers LOVED mainframes and could not implement them fast enough and all of sudden retail got bootstrapped onto Moore’s law. Consequences was something that future generations could take care of. And so in the 50’s and 60’s logistics became automated.

Revolution 4

The 70s saw the rise of the personal computer and all of a sudden retailers did not have to to rely on digital centralised logistics centers but could digitise all their inventory locally. This was a major chink in the armour of the centralised retailers because stock management was something that held entrepreneurs back, but now all of sudden a task which used to be a week task that had to be done every month could be done in a day, leaving more time for business development (and for that matter self fulfilment because there were so many more people that could ask themselves : What are we doing with our lives? Having more time gives you that liberty) The democratisation of retail started in earnest in the 70s and early 80s

Revolution 5

In the 90s the web struck with the force of a meteor storm. Yet nobody took it serious and most people that has read this far knows someone that not even 10 years ago said : I WILL NEVER BUY SOMETHING ON THE INTERNET! , usually the argumentation was how insecure it was blah blah blah

But companies such as AMAZON said Hello world and the rest is history. Five years ago if you did not have a web strategy you probably worked on the moon.

Revolution 6

After 15 years of tinkering in European Basements it took an American Marketer to instigate the next revolution and in 2007 Steve Jobs, the Apple guy, introduced the iPhone which took the logistics revolution and placed it in the hands of John and Jane Doe. After 7 hectic years where everybody has become super users and everybody, I mean everybody, has an opinion about digital products. Its nuts. I mean I know very little about Classical music even if I do listen to it but I do not profess opinions about it lest I be beholden a fool.

We are in the twilight of the mobile revolution. Its so part of our day-to-day business that all growth left in its is default organic growth.
So what is the next revolution that will blow more industries out of the water?

Well there are two main contenders in my world. And actually living in such revolutionary times revolutions in the same sphere can run concurrently .

The first candidate is the currency revolution. If there is an archaic system that needs to be re-invented it is money. Not even cash but pure currency. Currency is the most undemocratic product in the world and needs to be rehashed. The crypto currencies reaching the world now are doing just. To give you a metaphor, crypto-currencies are now where the web was in 1994. Let there be no doubt it is going to change the world. If you are not read up on the subject do so now or contact us and we will walk your though it.

The second candidate is that lame named Internet-of-Things. I just call it the Sensory Web. Everything will be connected and everything will shift information from point a to b. Theres is not much more to say about it except that it will be a default growth area for retailers in the coming years.

So there you have some insight into retail revolutions and to think that logistics has come such a long way that in 2008 the US Army created a new department with an officer only membership and they have the following creed

I am an American Soldier and a logistician.

I am the heir of Quartermaster, Ordnance, and Transportation Soldiers who have served our Nation in war and peace since 1775.

I provide the Nation’s warfighters of all services what they need, when they need it, where they need it.

I anticipate the warfighter’s need for sustainment in all situations, at all times, under all conditions.

I integrate logistics into the commander’s plans and decisions.

I ensure continuity of support to sustain the momentum of the force.

I respond rapidly to the ever-changing needs of the warfighter.

I improvise to sustain the force with innovation and ingenuity.

I live by the Army values and the Soldier’s Creed.

I lead by example.

I am true to the motto of the Logistics Corps, “Sustinendum Victoriam”— “Sustaining Victory!”[1]

Sounds like a logistic quality of service EULA for humans if you ask me.

Erich Hugo
Director: Business Development
ITG Digital
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