Innovation Blog

will.i.am (Black Eyed Peas): Intel’s new creative asset   

By Shlomo Maital

   will.i.am,  Black Eyed Peas 

   It has taken me six months to learn about it, but, better late than never – a report in Computer World last January notes that Intel has made a creative appointment to enhance its creativity:

   William James Adams Jr, better known as Will.i.am of the popular music group Black Eyed Peas, was named Intel’s new director of creative innovation, the chip maker said Tuesday.  Adams, a Grammy winner with multiple platinum albums, will work with Intel on developing new technologies, music and in technology advocacy, Intel said in a statement.  It is “a multi-year, hands-on creative and technology collaboration with Intel,” the chip giant said. 

Will.i.am kicked off his own music apps company this week, Will.i.apps, with an app called BEP360 on iTunes, featuring a 360 degree video of the song “The Time (Dirty Bit).” Users can move their iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch around for a 360-degree view of the music video on their screen, similar to the way Google Sky works. Will.i.apps aims to develop applications that more creatively use advanced digital technologies in music and videos.

“That’s the kind of digital media that we want to tap into, that kind of brain,” said David Dickstein, an Intel spokesman. He said Will.i.am already has an Intel employee badge and may soon have a workspace at the company.

  Intel is making desperate efforts to read the future in order to position its new products to capitalize on it.   Intel now believes that multimedia will be a huge new market for its microprocessors.   At the same time Intel appointed will.i.am,  it also  announced that Erik Huggers, director of the BBC’s Future Media & Technology division, will join Intel as corporate vice president and general manager of its Digital Home Group.

   Computer World reports that HP too has joined the parade.  Hewlett-Packard, for example, is using sound technology developed in tandem with rapper Dr. Dre in multimedia laptops, called Beats Audio.  The goal, according to HP, is “to provide the optimal sound experience — the way the artist intended it — when playing music or audio through headphones or external speakers.”

   The Intel and HP appointments indicate a growing trend in innovation – Make the consumer, or in this case, the actual producer (of media), a key partner in the process.   Democratized innovation, the title of Eric von Hippel’s book, has truly arrived. 

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