18 | Erich Hugo - MD, Business Innovation, DeltaTrak | Reducing food waste with IoT Smart Logistics

18 | Erich Hugo - MD, Business Innovation, DeltaTrak | Reducing food waste with IoT Smart Logistics

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[Music] welcome to the iot podcast show today i am joined by eric hugo uh eric is the managing director of business innovation at delta track delta tracker leading the way in cold chain management and temperature monitoring solutions and is generally considered a bit of a move and shaker within the iot industry eric thank you very much for coming on the show today um either move or shake or is delta track moving shakes well i think you both could be right well i hope my boss heard that so that he can give me a raise no problem no problem we'll send him the link once we're done with the show thanks for having me tom it's been it's fun being here and any opportunity to have a chat about myself is always great you know very cute uh eric for for our listeners that don't know you or don't know delta track uh could you just explain a little bit about your background in iot and what brought you here today um a little bit is is is a long goes a long way back i mean i was born and raised on the east coast of africa in kwazulu-natal um where my family lived and comes from and where my heart is and i had an introduction into let's say computing around about 1979 1980 i know i look very young but i have been around the block a while and my dad took me to his work and they had installed a wang computer which at that stage was like the big thing you know and because there was this new thing called mainframe computing that was going to take over the business world and it was a mainframe computer with a lot of like let's say desktop applications all over the show all around the building um and i remember the id guy telling me that this is the future you know connected computing is going to be really great and in two years later the apple lisa was released and um the pc came onto the ibm cam came onto the horde and killed mainframe computing basically um i but i mean i fell in love with computing as a hobby as a hobby i mean and and it's also depends how you see iot i mean iot has been with us from the beginning i mean somewhere somewhere it's been just connected computing you know and that's basically getting things going but my my love started in gaming got the atari 2800 then got the zx spectrum with my older brother you still have them um no um but i still have the emulators and i still game a lot and things like that um upgraded to a dsx 286 dsx in the late 80s but then i went to study law in 1989 1990 uh made a hash of that went to south african army because all the white boys at that stage because of the apartheid regime still had to go into military service came out realized that the legal world was not for me but they didn't know what i wanted to do but i've always been dabbling in computer because my older brother is electronic engineer and he's always had he always had the goodies at home and stuff like that and then went backpacking across europe for for two years saw the launch of oasis here in the uk alive and it was just amazing came back to south africa decided to become a grown-up and decided to go work for my brother and that's where the journey started in 1995 then and he launched a company called internext which was an isp and while all the big companies in south africa went to go and focus on the big cities like cape town durban or johannesburg we couldn't compete with them because they had marketing budgets you know so my brother and his wisdom decided well let's go and sit on the edge of the karoo in the kalari desert because there's all these big mines and everybody always ignores these people and stuff like that and so on and we get them as customers so we wired um i don't know how long you've been involved in in the internet but like i mean with trumpet winsock was the default mode of connecting computers to the internet on windows computers in those days windows 3.1 and i mean macca's or apple's always been too expensive for south africa i mean it's not really mainstream in south africa so it was windows by default and connected all those mines but it's very boring uh living in the desert it sounds very glamorous but it's not so i started chatting online met a woman who was doing a phd in the ethics of genetically modified food at uppsala university and i fell in love in 95 96 and my parents couldn't understand how could you fall in love with a woman on the other side of the planet uh the other internet got a shrink to come and speak to me can't you meet a woman like in a bar like in every normal human being but then i had done i had built up quite a few let's say gems on my cv at that stage for instance i launched one of the south africa's first e-commerce websites where we sold headstones gravestones for um via on online for a customer because south africa i mean i don't know who bought it at that stage but it seemed like a good idea um then so i moved through my cv online got a job in moscow and russia and in amsterdam but i thought i knew western europe at that station want to see the great empire before it became too westernized so i went to live and work in moscow and russia in 96 97. the woman from sweden came over we fell in love still together two kids later moved to sweden and got my first job programming intranet for four corporations built one of erickson's first internet 1999 so self-educated studied further via via university of california berkeley remote long-distance education um and then just roll from there because i had this web web background and then i got a phone call from nokia in 2001 and they said well we're going to launch this new product it's called the nokia media terminal which is a linux setup box um with but we're going to build the mozilla browser onto it now this is 2001. you have to remember this is really early and we need somebody that could understand we're a bunch of hardcore electric engineers and electronic engineers but we need somebody that could really build this ecosystem of content via the mozilla browser onto the setup box and i mean this was revolutionary i mean building a linux set-top box in 2001 was just out of the ordinary you could play you could record shows and everything like that and they would build these native apps into into into the system to for instance record tv and i was like you know we can do that with web technology and just layer a transparent layer via the mozilla browser onto the screen and record everything with the same quality and they were oh you can do that stayed with nokia launched launched music kits for them built quite a few innovative solutions started my own company in 2009 called itg i was invited by a good friend of mine to join the the now very famous company called zound industries which is the makers of the martial headphones um that you see everywhere and stuff like that they signed an agreement with marshall out of i think they're up in milton keynes to make the martial headphones and i was on the board there for five years while running my own consulting agency and um then and always in in this crossover i never knew what i did i never knew what i did i mean i thought i did rapid business development which is now called design thinking um and then i you know in ancient times you discover you always had your spirit animal but in modern times i've got my spirit youtuber and it's it's a british guy called tom scott and i don't know if you know him and if you don't know this is it shout out to tom scott he's just great and he did a webcast or a show called the art of bodging now this is great english word called budging which is is is people that basically slap things together and and make magic you know and i realized that he's a technical bodger and i'm a business model and as in iot you've got edge computing now coming to the in business you've got age business you know which is kind of the the business equivalent of edge computing and iot but it's people on the periphery of all these different technologies that put them together into mixtures that that do things and do magic things um and i've done that i've bought mobile phones for two companies um custom-made mobile phones i've bought connected speakers i've built connected air purifiers what was always the leading question and everything that i developed was more the the application rather than the iot technology you know um in the case of the air purifier they all said we need to save people's lives you know people are dying of air pollution i actually saw in britain right now that um it had registered its first case of official cause of death was an eight-year-old girl that died of air pollution she had to walk in london to and back from school and she had a severe asthmatic attack and so so there was a case for for technology to address the situation um 2014 i launched my first real iot company before i was more into m2m companies and stuff like that when it was called machine to machine like connected speakers like connected headphones like connected things but then we launched our first iot company called most which was a hub which you put in the back of containers that measures five five key data points and what was interesting is that the idea was born my little brother exports fruit citrus to to to europe and to russia and everything like that and we were getting pretty blasted at one of his um on his farm in in south africa once and he and he got a phone call from st petersburg where the quality controller phoned him and said listen we're sending back this container from the other side of the world because because everything is rotten and and that and i asked him so what happened he said well you know i know that i can solve this i know i know that they probably lying to me or they decided that they got a better vendor because the whole risk he was carrying the whole risk but if i could just get a knockout mobile phone on the inside of that container all the way because i own the space on the inside of a container then i can see what went wrong and so he had this idea and because i'm a business bodger i went wait a minute let's let's get the bunch of people together and see if we can actually build a prototype of putting something inside a container and i was surprised because all these big companies like delta track and everything like that didn't really focus on what they now call real-time logging i just took off-the-shelf components and built a unit got my ex-friends at knockout to design it for me got another friend to build the website for me the cloud solution and everything and and mix it into into a bowl and created this real time logging company that's now available in over 158 countries and logging inside um i left that company in 2019 mainly because if you have a hardware company you have to spend a lot of money it's it's expensive and it had run its course and i got contacted by a chap from silicon valley called fred wu who who's a privately owned company and he said listen i've drawn so much inspiration of your journey in that iot journey that you made won't don't you want to become a business innovator and and help us enter this new world and that's where i ended up right now so so what am i i'm a business bodger that makes mixtures inside the iot environment i'm technically well well gifted enough to understand the technology and i go against the mainstream quite extensively because i know technology companies in the iot industry they want to sell their technology they don't really care about the actual applications they say they do but the fact is is that and i see it right now you have to interrupt me tom because i'm just going off here right now no it's okay it's okay um technology companies right now are going off on 5g and sick fox and everything like that but they're not really solving those those technologies are not solving the question the questions that iot can actually address you know what are the questions that iot needs to address and then decide which is the relevant technology the only appropriate global wide area network iot platform that i am prepared to swear by is still the 2g network i mean um the and and the funny thing is is that we're going now i i look at for instance chipsets that i have to buy and things like that and they go yeah but you have to have 4g and 5g and all that stuff and so on and i go great but my producers in guinea bissau or in nigeria or wherever they're still 10 to 15 years away from 5g you know and that's where my journeys start you know and and it's still so far away for them and you're trying to put the technology in their hands that hey they won't use b is totally out of reach for them in terms of financial investment and things like that and who's going to carry these costs and stuff like that so they're not really addressing the the the people that are at the beginning of a supply chain that needs to deliver for instance to europe i mean if you go into a tescos right now or i go into a karafur or lidl right now i mean i look at a product that comes from south america it was probably packed in ecuador or in chile or things like that probably by a person who probably delivered one pallet of that product to a bigger consortium and stuff like that how in heaven's name are they going to even carry the overheads of let's say a 30 euro product that needs to be added to the container you know we could but it has got the latest technology it's got 5g and blah blah blah blah and it's got you know great narrow narrow band connectivity it's got sig forks problem that's not the point here the point here is is that i need to know that the fruit or the perishable is is getting in a good condition here in europe or whatever the goods is so it made that transition from from technology web to hardware to iot and now into logistics and it's super interesting and the thing that really got me about logistics is that what people don't know or what people don't know by some estimates logistics is one third of the global gdp one-third of the global gdp right it's massive the industry i mean in all its different facets of that a massive chunk is perishables like i mean we ship food all over the world from everywhere and everywhere of that perishable 40 percent never reaches an intended market i mean let that sink in so we've got producers producing all over the world 40 of that produce never reaches you sitting in your office in brazil and it was intended it's a terrible waste isn't it right it's incredible and yet the industry is profitable so with a waste of 40 the industry is profitable and i'm like astounded by this this means that it is one of the most profitable industries in the world there's nothing that comes close to it because if you can have a waste of 40 of your produce either somebody is being exploited extremely somewhere or it is extremely profitable yeah and then uh so so if you can address this waste via real time logging and everything like that you can bring it down by 10 year-on-year or things like that not only do you i'm from sweden not now i mean i'm from south africa originally but i'm swedish now and um i live in the zeitgeist of this country and one of my heroes is obviously greta turnberry tinberg who is a fantastic person who's done more to save the environment than i could ever hope to and and all her climate goals can be achieved if we stop wasting perishables because it will be less shipping it will be less it will be higher profitability so let's stop wasting food and we could actually achieve climate goals on the other side you know how are we going to stop wasting food well bringing technology into play you know so technology from real time logging using ai to check the quality of food food um you know and so on and so on taking a photograph of a of of a peach and see okay how far is it going to rot and how much shelf life has got left and everything like that and i'm budging all those solutions into and baking it into a into into solutions in a legit exchange the world will i mean if i can get people excited enough about stopping food waste and i'm not it's great that people are recycling at home and everything like that i'm not not denouncing that but if you really really want to effect and be good for the planet we need to show up in our logistics chain we need to get better at managing goods and and real-time logging is the way to go so delta track is this company that's been around fred started the company 31 years ago still privately owned it's going like a train i love working for privately owned companies because they've got a longer-term vision um than than than let's say traded companies they can really go it's based on a vision that everybody buys into and fred's got a great vision and and we're putting this all these different elements i mean he didn't build a multi-million dollar company by not being wise you know he he realized that there's certain elements and now he sees that iot is going to change well he saw it five years ago iot and blockchain and all those things going to change the logistics industry so he's starting to make all these strategic investments right now and we're budging these things together into an environment that we feel um is going to address this gap in the market yeah i mean it's fantastic isn't it because you've touched upon their obviously what delta track do right and and the use of real-time loggers and i think the the most poignant thing that i've taken from that eric is the fact that you know 40 of these perishable items never reached their destination and we put so much focus on the end consumer to practice good recycling good um practice just around you know what you do with waste and the management of waste but it seems fairly academic compared to the massive issue that you have at the supply chain side of things right it's incredible yeah um so just to go a little bit more deeper on that could you just explain a little bit more about the real-time loggers within delta track and and and what and what it is that you're attempting to do you know with them to stop this issue well we've got the abstract and then we've got the let's say the pragmatic i mean the pragmatic is that we're a company that wants to make data available i mean it has to be available to our customers to the consumers to the whole supply chain what is happening inside a container and not just the container i mean it it's anything that needs to be locked or tracked and things like that and with that we've built a range of products that addresses certain verticals you know i mean we're based in silicon valley so of course there's two major food export industries in the areas in the world i mean it's california is one of the largest exporters of food in the world and holland i mean people don't realize that holland or the netherlands is the second biggest exporter of food in the world not only at their own produce but but produce that actually comes via rotterdam into the european union yeah and for the east so i i believe that delta track i mean i'm fairly new with the company and fred will probably wrap me on my knuckles but delta track was born out of that need of transporting transporting perishables out of california to the rest of the states right um and and it was with dumb trackers which you put in and very early in this in this journey um they built in something we patented something called shadow logging right so so most logging has got something that you you basically have to press a button the user has to activate it and remember this logging is used in court cases so it has to be with the right sensors with the right connectivity methodology everything has to be stand up in a court of law and shadow logging is basically a pdf log that goes on regardless of whether the customer presses the button or not so when you retrieve the logger um then then you can still get the data of what has happened so so we built a whole range of products that goes into containers whether it's from perishables or whether it's from dry goods or whether it's from on an airplane we've got flight mode so it switches off its connectivity options when it goes on to a airplane and for so that you as the the receiver or the sender can see exactly where your cargo is what is the condition of your cargo what's the temperature inside the cargo in different points inside the container because like for instance you can measure the temperature in the front of a container but the back of the container has got a different temperature but if spoilage actually happens in the back it affects the front so you need to measure the temperature we call it two channel we've got various connectivity options you know we try and create solutions hardware solutions that actually fit our customers needs um lots of technical denominations of these products but basically i would rather say is if somebody had to contact me and say can delta track your address the problem for me i'll say so what is your problem and then i would go into my budgeting book and i'll say oh and i speak to our cto who's a great young guy and he'll say okay but we could actually use this we could change the interface like this and we can put the product in there so you put a logger in the back of a container it's on the on on on on marine transport for six weeks i mean the fresh fresh food that you if you eat orange from south africa yeah in a tescos there in bristol then i promise you it's been on the ocean for at least six months it's a controlling six weeks it's a controlled environment and and then you can see okay no the temperature went too high or there was light that came into the container because light starts the photosynthesis process and all of this gives you a registration and okay how was my goods and it helps the logistics guys um importers have to carry the brunt of the losses if uh if a retailer decides not to take a product you know they could say okay you didn't deliver on monday morning 9 a.m so i'm going to go somewhere else so

the import is stuck with the goods and they can still see oh my container is in las palmas maybe it's time that i find a new buyer because the logger has basically let me know that michael we bought the geo location um that basically cleans the pings us and says okay now it's close to that base station in las palmas lets me know here in gothenburg that my container is basically two weeks shipping away i'm not gonna make my deadline maybe it's time to find a new buyer um so things like that um i focus very much i'm not technically enough technology savvy enough to really go into the details of you know the which type of bands but i'm technology enough savvy enough to to understand how it's gonna affect the business process yeah and then like i say the logistics industry still uses maritime laws from from from when when napoleon invaded egypt you know it's it's an industry waiting for disruption really yeah i mean thank you for that eric yeah i mean we've spoken to quite a few people involved in asset tracking and monitoring of shipments and cargo and what have you but um it's the first time i've heard someone in a real life use case talk about the fact of if you're going to be late for a shipment a delivery to a customer you potentially can send that somewhere else to decrease that 40 percent amount that you talk about exactly um and that and that's fantastic isn't it really because i mean it's almost a little bit i'm not so much unfair but you hear a lot about this especially in the uk with um you know farmers really being beholden to the supermarkets right and if they're late or if something is slightly deformed that the carrot's not straight then they reject it and it's and it seems to me like a really um like dare i say it like kind of fairly irresponsible approach sometimes from the supermarket chains to do that because it is just causing this waste and if this is causing these issues um and and and and it doesn't need to be sometimes right you know um and and i'm sure this system will help that and and and try and find out absolutely tom i mean i i i i'm not going to put the blame at the supermarket's feet because neither am i for the record because all these companies just evolve um from an excel sheet where they have to show profit and loss um is it is a supermarket's goal to make money or to feed people you know i mean that if you ever if it is to feed people then you can have a different strategy than just to basically make money you know so so all these small things have to come into play for everybody to come on to me but this new generation the greater tindberg generation they're amazing they're filling me with inspiration because they they actually want to make the world a better place for them it's default state that things have to be sustainable whereas my generation it's very much excel driven bottom line and and making the books balance whereas the new generation says wait a minute i i want to make money but i want to make enough money but i also want to make the world a better place and and i see that everywhere and and i'm so grateful for my kids who are teenagers and early 20s right now i mean they are making these they're engineers and stuff like that but they're making these small choices to to make this better but just to give you an an interesting thing is that there's a country i'm not going to name the country for for for fear of pissing off some other countries but they make great they sell they produce some of the greatest avocados in the world so the buyers of of avo's go to the specific markets where they trade the avo's in the local country and they say okay we want to buy they get an order from tesco say we need three containers of avo's and we want the best hours so they go to this market and this country makes really really great avo's all produces great levels so they place an order and six weeks later the avo's get delivered to bristol tesco and they're all rotten this is i'm giving a real case of what has happened so they came to us and they said we don't understand this i mean everything is checked and so on we need you guys to check out why this happened we don't know what's happening because when they they load it into the container it's these beautiful beautiful vegetables or is it a fruit have a fruit and they come up and and it happens time and time again from new york delivery to um berlin delivery to london delivery it all messes up so what we did is we put a real-time tracker into the back of the trucks um when they got loaded and we got all this data back right and then we started realizing okay we've got an accelerometer inside the tracker and we started saying wait a minute the truck is shaking quite actively um why is it shaking so much and because we know that if ever basically starts bumping against each other then they start ripening and that you initiate the ripening process we analyzed the data we came to the conclusion but wait a minute somebody is driving on a dirt road here most of the drivers from from the city um to the port the city is in in continent the port is about 500 kilometers away they're driving on dirt roads even though they are tired roads they don't take the target roads they take people then we actually realize but the incentivization scheme for the truck drivers is to a conserve fuel and hit time deadlines right so to conserve fuel they would go don't they won't take the main road they won't take the tar road because they get bonuses for all the fuel that they save right so they save the fuel by taking the dirt road um and then also the dirt road creates shaking and the avo's ripen so we went back to the client and we said okay this is your problem it's not the iot that's going to save you it's not it's not the trucking company it's the the goals and the targets that the drivers have you know you need to incentivize them in another way so that they stick to because they're all private contractors you know so you need to incentivize them in a different way to take the toll roads to take the toll roads so that the the vegetables and the fruit doesn't shake on inside the container you know so so it was this real-life problem here in europe and in america of rotten avos was actually caused by the incentivization of a person in in the on this continent who was basically saying you have to save fuel you have to save fuel so so with real-time logging we put everything together we got this whole pool of data we've got an amazing database a really fantastic database with billions of data points where our data scientists just go in and they basically okay we want to see how is this hurricane affecting the traffic and so on and so on we can see these things in real time you know it's really great yeah i think from what you've said i think you know the login system is fantastic from a technological standpoint but i think what it what it what it could do as well is in enhance uh the conscious effort for sustainability throughout this chain absolutely because i think everyone needs to play a part in this right you know i talk about it to supermarkets earlier but that you know if they do the logistics to the drivers everyone and everyone is incentivized and has a metric against that to to do that then this this is what you know is is probably needed right in order to reduce them i mean we can inspire inspire consumers here in europe and in the usa and china to recycle until the the cows come home but if you i mean but that is just that is of the 60 percent that has been delivered you know that doesn't even address the 40 of perishables that has gone through exactly exactly and that's what i mean it's fair in a way it's kind of it's not academic but it's it's it's sadly such a massive amount that it really tips the scales doesn't it so if we can we can address that side and culturally change people i mean i hold my hands up right you know 10 years ago i probably didn't recycle that much right um but now i do and now i'm so conscious about it and um you know and i'm so conscious about making sure that we um you know are making are making use of a food waste of of of um recyclable items and it's really staggering when you think about it even just from one household right incredible it's incredible i mean it's it's a whole lifestyle change i mean our current society is built on the whole concept of growth um and we need to grow differently i mean we need to grow our businesses differently um i i here in sweden there's a massive trend of the kids right now i mean the force is growing clothing chain i mean we're the home of h m but the fastest growing clothing chain is a secondhand retailer it's all secondhand clothes and stuff like that and so on um because the recycling how do we send clothes back to i mean if you in e-commerce you you ship something a clothing item to a consumer i don't know how good e-commerce is actually for the environment because we don't ship one container we ship a bucket load of small products you know and so on and and that's something that some phd students still have to analyze you know the effect of e-commerce on the environment um i've got my suspicions but but um secondhand clothing secondhand goods things like that and shifting secondhand goods between between um in an open market you know like for instance not everybody needs the latest latest devices you know you can get along quite well and you've got a rich country that basically gets rid of two-year-old model devices you know why not just repurpose them in another market in a different way you know and stuff like that and so it's happening it's growing i also believe that we have to really start looking at our modular lifestyle uh for 10 years we've had this business model where and and i take electronics as a reference point here i mean now everything is included in our electronics i mean if you want to upgrade your camera on your mobile phone you can't you have to upgrade your mobile phone you know i don't know if you remember the pc revolution it was lego it was candy i mean we built our own computers and we upgraded this component but that also led to a lot less of waste you know if you buy a laptop these days the only way that you could upgrade your screen is if you buy a complete new computer you know and and this goes for everything in our whole lifestyle now we're a bit off topic but so logistics um is going to play a role in all of that it's it's in how to ship goods from one point and deltatrack is definitely i mean i i admire the fact that they really wanted i mean i know that california is full of hippies and all that stuff and so on but these guys really want to make the world a better place you know and they're doing it effectively and and they're doing it constructively you know yeah yeah i went is fantastic i mean it's something that i'm really passionate about in terms of tech for good right and using iot to make a more sustainable world um richard attenborough put out one of his it was fun one of his final i don't know if it's his final documentary might do another but um you know you can't help but be moved by what we've done right um and and the collision course that we're we're facing so so it's really inspiring to hear stories about this and and the general you know real world effects that it can bring um you know you meant you mentioned at the start uh when you're talking about your background and we we've touched upon this in in in in context before but um you know when we talk about setup boxes we talk about media we talk about entertainment you know it's fantastic but at the end of the day it's just tv right so when when you're trying to do things that actually changing things for the benefit of humankind it's really there's a real feel-good factor there just on that just on that note as well eric and um i'm keen i'm keen to hear what your thoughts are on um kind of um um where the future's going with this where where we're gonna be in the future where you would like to see it happen in in the sort of not too distant future and then maybe longer term what what do you think that we'll see within an iot revolution uh specifically around solutions such as what delta track is doing with uh real-time logging well i i think the biggest revolution is going to be the one that we don't see uh yeah and consumers are driven by things that are visible but there's this whole subcurrent and an undercurrent of iot that's happening right now which is in the industrial iot um now i'm under nda so i have to be very so i'm going to tell you a story for instance there's the services industry the services industry is going to be revolutionized and and here i mean not financial services i don't i'm inspect quality control that's the services that i mean so so if you've got a subway in london that subway needs to be inspected every single year the trains need to be inspected the the tunnels need to be inspected the the the transmission systems needs to be and real-time monitoring is going to change that completely because what is an inspection process right now well if you're if you've got a nuclear power plant and you need to go inspect it you need to send 10 to 15 qualified engineers to a plant every single year they have to go through they have to switch it off they have to check for cracks in the core uh they have to check for um for four uh slithers um what they call it with components becoming run down and stuff like that and so on yeah um we can solve that with real-time logging we can solve that with real-time logging you can place an iot sensor in the various forms off-the-shelf components i'm not selling any specific network i'm talking about stuff that i can go and buy right now i can build a iot prototype that i can use in a nuclear power plant um that will measure cracks in the core you know because a crack once a crack starts it it's always there a subway carriage you know exactly where cracks in the steel starts always so the inspectors that go out every year and check for those cracks they go to that specific point and they go and they measure they spray a paint on it and they see you can actually layer an iot sensor on top of that right now and on a micro level it will actually measure that in real time and you can have a central data point that gets this data back and you can manage it i actually bring this in because this is happening and this is going to be rolled out and it's going to revolutionize the quality control industry because i mean all these engineers go and study to become quality control people to go out and see a big copper drum that mixes paper you know they they these big drums and if they crack it's it's then end game over you can check those so so i would say the lower level engineering is gonna levels are going to be completely changed by iot the reason why it's taking so long is because they don't have badges in those organizations they've got people that are very good at what they do and they spend 20 to 30 years at becoming great crack engineers and when you come and tell them that iot is going to make this easy for you they may be not that keen because yeah yeah it kind of like it's kind of like what cryptocurrency is doing to the financial industry cryptocurrency will make banking so much easier but the bank people go yeah you know i have spent the last 40 years now in this career and i want to keep my my benefits you know and stuff like that so that's why adoption is going slow but like my namesake victor hugo said you know you can't you can't stop an idea whose time has come you know it's it's just a question it's it's happening and you can either be in the front of the curve and where delta track is really growing well i mean we are fairly big as it is but where we really are going in is that this this 40 percent is a passion thing for us and we're really looking at at that we i i can't really speak about what we're doing because it's uh sure but but all this this whole process of delivering goods from a producer in santiago in chile to a to a supermarket in in novosibirsk in russia that is an eight-week process that we can log and there is data interactions at every single point of those things and we can basically make calculated choices completely along the way and we realize that we can do that right now but we also need to educate our customers that you can do it because an importers i mean these guys have been importing stuff for 30 years you know and if you tell them here's an iot or rtl logger they're going yeah you know i want my apple iphone you know that's about it and i said i send emails with it you know and stuff like that so so it's a question of educating the market and transforming the market at the same time you know but like i say us old fogies we're dying out the new generation is coming in and they get it i mean they they they grew up on on on science fiction and they grew up on on blade runner and they grew up on seeing these things that the movie makers could do um like imitating art right oh i mean really in my whole career my high point has been actually interviewing the late great uh ian banks uh who's the father of the culture novels and i mean that man was just so far ahead in the future that it's just incredible i mean um he predicted quite a lot of these connected things are not predicted i mean he projected um in his science fiction um he projected a lot of these use cases that we're actually applying right now and i would have never gotten my inspiration if i didn't read these cultural novels you know yeah and the same goes for um there's so many i say read more science fiction don't read about how to manage businesses read science fiction you know because it changes everything you know so yeah um i think that this process we are going to fine-tune this process and we're going to get the data scientists involved and hopefully in about 10 years time we've brought down the 40 ways to about 30 percent and and but knowing knowing the internet and the power of the internet it will probably go much faster it will probably go much faster you know once a seller in in in in robertson in south africa like my little brother um when he sees that wait a minute my my lemons aren't going to reach they're going to reach a vladivostok on time i need to find a new buyer you know fast you know because of the real-time logic data and and you can also see what's the quality of the fruit and the vegetables on the inside of that container you can see okay wait a minute i've only got about two weeks shelf life left it's good for me if i tell the buyer now sell these out right now because they're not going to last on your shelves because there was some kind of some kind of thing that happened inside the container on the trip and so on the big challenge is that there is how is the data going to be managed because all these big shipping companies they don't i mean if you if you own the inside of the container and you basically come to them and say wait a minute your container your culture and reefer that i booked from you had a leak you know it's like all of a sudden they go like we don't want to take responsibility for that we've never taken responsibility for that since now so it's there's still a lot of a lot of legalese that needs to follow all of this right now before we get into that ideal situation but um i mean if i can build a phone for an african country then we can definitely solve this you know so i've got no it's been really fascinating learning more about yourself and obviously the business and we really appreciate your insights um thank you so much for coming on the show today um there's one little story that i want to tell you oh thank you carry on with that application i mean we talk about mobile money and we talk about um we talk about cryptocurrencies and everything like that but very few people realize really where it started as an active application you know where it really started as an active application on the east coast of africa nokia was it's still the the big corporate level of my life the company that was in the in the early the time of the century because they this is this finnish company that really started out they wanted to make a world of the world a better place i mean it wasn't yeah i mean nokia has had this vision it's like how can our technology make the world a better place and so they basically have supported countries to build 2g networks and they brought out low-cost mobile phones so that normal people could get their first interaction with the internet so these fishermen on the east coast of zanzibar africa there is animal area they would go out and they would fish early in the morning three o'clock in the morning and previously the previous process was that they would come back to shore and then they would sell their fish on the market and stuff like that and it's a system that had worked for centuries i mean since since since the the the the arab invaders came down on the coast and basically started this commercial enterprises i mean thousands of years ago a thousand years ago um and then the mobile phone came and i'm talking 2g dumb phones right so that these fishermen could sit like seven kilometers off for the coast and they would send sms's to the shore and say okay who's coming in uh who's coming out with asia with it this is not the beginning of the this is 2001. i mean this is like really they would get prices for the fishes and and then they would go okay wait i shouldn't dock there i should do dock there so they could actually start managing the whole logistic process just with old traditional 2g technology and and that evolved where they actually started selling their catches for air time so so the currency of okay wait a minute now i've taken up 10 kilograms of fish and i want to sell it but that guy wants to buy it right now but he's 10 kilometers into the shore how can he buy it oh well he can just credit my air time on my phone so i could then go and take this airtime and credit it to somebody else and it became a complete industry of selling and trading air time on the east coast of africa in and that's where i draw my inspirations from i mean i don't i'm excited about what happens in the labs of the west but people applying technology in innovative ways that's where the magic happens you know really yeah i mean who could have thought that people would trade with air time it's like what and this is in 2002 before cryptocurrency even saw the light of day you know and stuff like that so i think sometimes it's providing the platforms isn't it and providing uh the infrastructure for people to then you know monetize it in their own way exactly and also i i would like the telecom industry of where i've got a lot of great friends i mean they when it comes to iot the telecom industry goes about 20 30 of the way um they never really take themselves into the actual challenges that the people that have their services for instance if i've got an iot solution out there and i need to manage it they say well here's the jasper tool you know start managing your sim cards and start managing whatever that that means i have to hire a techie i just want to i want to move fruit you know i don't want to sit and and manage the jasper tool you know and stuff like that and so on another end part of the industry where i think it in the uk is leading this quite a lot right now is organic farming um i'm not sold on the idea of organic farming i i do believe that it's not the way to go it's gonna it's it's it's gonna use too much natural resources to get organic farming off the ground to feed a nation you need to have controlled farming you need to have um farming that basically can smaller and that you can do with iot smaller area producing more food and so on and so yeah so that's where rtl is going to play a big role as well yeah yeah it's interesting to say that because we work with some vertical farming businesses um on on the recruitment side of what i do and that's a really interesting topic right you know rtl bring it in there yeah absolutely yeah absolutely yeah eric thank you it's been really good honestly i've enjoyed it it's uh it's great to hear you know so many stories and and i think and then it's definitely we need to talk about something else in the future on here as well right and see where where your journey is where delta chang's journey is but uh you know we we could talk for hours right about various topics but i i really appreciate you coming on and taking the time out to talk to us all right um but thank you so much thank you man all right no problem recording knock [Music]

2021-03-03 16:17

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