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Optimization: Achieving a better society without mass disposal

May 06, 2021


Optimization and mass disposal

Optimization will one day replace the era of mass disposal. In the era of mass disposal, products that cannot be sold under a brand name are made to be disposed of quickly. By making them discardable, their price is kept down and this balances supply and demand. Also, the rich do not want their products to be sold at a reduced price. They do not want their products to be worn by people of different social status.

However, in the era of Online Merge Offline, it has become possible to predict production estimates based on online data, so there is no need to carry as much inventory. Using Toyota’s Kanban system and other production control methods, we are able to keep less inventory.

In the past, UNIQLO was constantly struggling with sales forecasts for its four seasonal sales. However, in this day and age, UNIQLO is becoming more and more standardized, and the mainstream differentiation will probably be in the form of crowdfunding and other types of sales.

It is not an exaggeration to say that most of the cost of society is logistics. If each product is manufactured individually, the cost will become too high.

If this is the case, companies like Konoha will emerge in the clothing industry, and fabless Japanese companies will start doing individual production in foreign countries. This is a reality, and it is being realized in the form of SPA. However, while in the past there may have been many cases where products were sold without highly accurate inventory forecasts, it seems that this is now fully possible.

Automating whole industries

A database of individual people will be accumulated, yet shoes, tops, and other clothing will be made in the same factory and shipped overseas. The front companies will all be different, but one company will manage inventory, production, and delivery. They will be automatically transported from the port, and even sorted automatically after arriving at the port.

In the same way, food product production will be optimized. For example, vegetables are predicted to be produced in factories, transported automatically, processed, and then further processed in central kitchens before being consumed by people. Meat may be replaced by fake meat such as soybeans. There is a possibility that food will be cooked in hot pods and other similar electric cooking devices. The food we leave behind may be prepared based on our past eating records and physical condition.

Kibbutz-like places where people spend time together will become mainstream. Only the rich will be able to enjoy single-family homes. Or mobile homes could become the norm. The secondary market for clothing, food, and other products is also likely to develop well.

We need to be aware that optimization means that the city is being built from online. And it is highly likely that entertainment will become more accessible. The age of containers is accelerating further into the age of data containers. And unless we go beyond the boundaries of the traditional enterprise, we will lose the game.

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See the original post in Japanese.

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