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Having established the context of the supply chain game in a previous post, we can now look at some of the strategies supply chain players utilise in order to gain a competitive advantage. The key to success here is basing your business strategy on the specific target market and aligning your supply chain accordingly. To achieve this, it is vital to:

  • Understand the market that your company serves
  • Position your company relative to its core strengths and competencies
  • Develop the needed supply chain capabilities to support this position

Save for a manufacturing monopoly of complex products, a one-size-fits-all business strategy is no longer a viable option given the imitation capabilities of global supply chain players spread across various regulatory boundaries. Moreover, increasingly empowered consumers also means that supply chains will have to cater to specific tastes which can vary greatly across cultures. …


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Singapore Blockchain Week’s first virtual conference just concluded yesterday (21 July 2020) and the word that seems to be on the tips of every panelist’s tongue is that of “interoperability”. Having had the privilege to speed run through the video conferences in the comfort of my PJs, I thought it would be good to see what the industry means by this as well as touch on other interesting points which came up in the discussions.

The one thing that the panelist agreed on is that the industry has matured significantly, especially as COVID became the unexpected catalyst to push the industry towards more production blockchains instead of proof-of-concepts (POCs). In an environment where people can’t meet face-to-face, the trust assumptions built into blockchain systems seems to be able to encourage better virtual collaboration. Discussions about the future of the technology has shifted from potential use cases to how existing use cases could integrate with each other. Essentially, how can individual systems interoperate by building smart contracts on their own systems which can then trigger contracts on an external system. …


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It is no secret that the supply chain has long been touted as one of the major industries ripe for major disruption with the introduction of blockchain technologies. This is due to the fact that individual products in the modern economy have multiple touch points throughout their supply chain involving various parties. Given this backdrop, it is easy to see why participants in the supply chain are drawn towards a technology which promises to introduce levels of trust previously unobtainable via the social sourcing of truth. The implications of this digitally validating shared ledger are many: eliminating intermediaries, streamlining business flows and inventories, as well as enabling more reliable provenance insights. Nevertheless, even with all these promises, a quick search would indicate that mainstream adoption is still some ways away. …


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In the tech industry, there is always talk about the latest and greatest innovations that is driving society forward. While all this talk about the future is definitely exciting, what is usually missing from the conversation is the present. More specifically, how do we position ourselves for this future that we are envisioning given that for the large majority of us, we’ve already developed our own technology stack based upon what were best technologies of the past. Any consideration of new technologies will necessitate a decision between the costs of adopting the new technology against the benefits promised. …


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Blockchain technologies have come a long way since its first successful iteration in the Bitcoin protocol. For those keeping track of the industry, so much has happened since then but enterprise use cases of the technology is still considered to be in its discovery phase. Among those use cases that have been successfully rolled out, there are two platforms that will pop up more often than not: Hyperledger Fabric and R3 Corda. Comparing the architecture of these two platforms from a business approach would shed some light into what exactly enterprises are looking for when it comes to adopting blockchain technologies. …


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As I approach a year in tech, I thought it would be a good time to reflect on how being in a technical role has changed my perspective on what it means to become a blockchain professional. Having come from an urban planning and real estate background, I’m hoping that this piece can shed some light to make the journey easier for those who have developed a keen interest in blockchain technology but aren’t from the relevant technical backgrounds. Rather than being one of those “How to get into/ How I got into tech” step-by-step write-ups, I wanted to provide some perspective on how to make such a journey a much more enjoyable one. …


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The infamous auctioning of Lehman Brothers sign

Binge watching Stranger Things over the weekend, I couldn’t help but reminisce about the thrills of biking through the American suburbs as a kid. Save for knocking on doors, the whole town was a playground where we could roam freely as everyone knew each other. Those were such fond memories except for the fact that I was born and raised in a Malaysian city where cycling meant braving not only the immense distances and not-so-friendly stray dogs but also getting lost in a sea of strangers with Google Maps still a few years away. …


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Credit from Vinny Lingham’s post

How much individual freedom are you willing to give up for the benefit of the group? How about if with every rule that you didn’t like, you could create an exact duplicate of the community with that particular rule changed? Would we be left with the perfect society for everyone or the perfect cocoon for anyone?

Versions of this individual vs community debate even forms a foundational pillar in the theory of evolution with many organisms learning to work in groups to ensure their own survival which in turn strengthens their species. In fact, the large part of human history has been a pendulum between the predecessors of modern day authoritarianism and anarchy as we struggle between surviving and the domestication of our individualistic tendencies. The difference now is that this debate is slowly starting to move away from one where the winner takes all through threat of violence or whole-scale rebellion. …


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Facilities management (FM) for the uninitiated are one of those industries which you never pay heed to unless an issue pops up at your office. The FM industry essentially focuses on providing efficient and effective support services for tenants in a building (commercial real estate for the purposes of this article). Eyes dried out from the air-cond blowing in your face? Complain red-eyed to your FM provider; Office feels like a club? Inform your FM provider of the loose lighting (or not); Spiders running around the office? …


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The EIU’s Democracy Tracker

One of the main aspects of blockchain technology which everyone is excited about revolves around the technology’s ability to create and maintain trustless systems. This is especially so in a time when reports such as The Economist’s Democracy Index 2018 highlight the disturbing retreat of democracy globally with 2018 witnessing the largest drop in perception of democracy since the index began in 2010. Decentralization is definitely blockchain’s main selling point but the reason why so many people are enticed by such a proposition in the current climate justifies a deeper dive. At its core, many people conflate decentralization with accountability resulting in tunnel vision when it comes to thinking of real world solutions. …

About

Aw Kai Shin

Technologist and Crytoeconomist

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