Fast Company November 2017

Fast Company is the world’s leading progressive business media brand, with a unique editorial focus on innovation in technology, leadership, world changing ideas, and design. Written for, by, and about the most progressive business leaders, Fast Company inspires readers to think beyond traditional boundaries, lead conversations, and create the future of business.

United States
Mansueto Ventures LLC
6 Issues

in this issue

2 min
from the editor

Six years ago, Fast Company’s editorial team had an insight: that Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google were increasingly expanding into contiguous businesses. Their competition, we believed, was pushing all of them to be even more ambitious— and pushing everyone else to innovate at a faster rate. We called this “The Great Tech War of 2012” in a cover story that set the framework for how a new wave of business activity would unfold. Today, we are seeing a similar shift under way around artificial intelligence. As senior writer Harry McCracken reports in what we’re calling “The Great AI War of 2018” (page 64), the investment in and motivation behind AI is setting in motion yet another wave of change— one that spans all industries and again features Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and…

2 min
your bacteria is ready for a checkup

Founder and CEO, Viome Until recently, serial entrepreneur Naveen Jain’s most ambitious project was Moon Express, a literal moonshot that aims to land a rocket on our cratered neighbor and use its resources to make other planets livable for humans. His newest mission feels just as profound: create a world without chronic disease. To accomplish it, he founded Viome, a bacteria-analysis company that examines the microorganisms in users’ guts and counsels them on how to keep harmful bacteria at bay. In September, the Bellevue, Washington–based company began selling its kits in the U.S., the U.K., Canada, India, and the Middle East. Harnessing technology developed at the Los Alamos National Lab in New Mexico, Viome employs artificial intelligence to analyze the digestive tract and its effects on the body’s immune and metabolic systems.…

2 min
these public lands are our public lands

In August, outdoor apparel brand Patagonia released its first television advertisement. Rather than showcase a new line of outdoor clothing and gear, the minute-long spot features founder Yvon Chouinard outlining an ongoing threat to America’s public lands. This year, 27 federally held national monuments, including Cascade-Siskiyou in Oregon and Bears Ears in Utah, underwent a review by Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke—an act that could presage incursions by private companies or even sale. “We thought people didn’t really understand what was at stake,” Patagonia president and CEO Rose Marcario says. “We don’t usually advertise in traditional ways. We try to help educate people about environmental harm.” The 44-year-old retailer has long been known for political activism, but since the election, its social consciousness has sharpened. Last November, it donated all…

2 min
most innouatiue companies

Amazon Milestones After ac quiring Whole Foods, the e-commerce giant moved quickly to drop prices on products like eggs at the notoriously expensive organic grocery store. Challenges Amazon’s in troduction of slightly lower prices is a start to reinvigorating a struggling Whole Foods, but it may not be enough to attract consumers away from cheaper options. Buzz Casper Milestones Casper has introduced its second mattress style, called the Wave, which has an extra layer that provides targeted support for the hips, shoulders, and back. The new mattress is tailored to the European market, which prefers firmer beds. Challenges The premium mattress costs about twice as much as the original model, which could be a hindrance as more budgetfriendly Casper knockoffs enter the space. Buzz NBC Milestones After invest - ing $500 million in Snap in March, NBC launched Snapchat’s…

2 min
assassin’s creed: origins gives ubisoft a new mission

Over the course of 10 years, nine major editions, and a 2016 feature film, Assassin’s Creed has become France-based gaming company Ubisoft’s flagship franchise, selling more than 105 million games. But the juggernaut faltered in recent years, with a buggy release of Assassin’s Creed: Unity in 2014 and sliding sales for its follow-up, Syndicate, in 2015. Ubisoft’s response: Take a year off and come back with a reimagined product. Assassin’s Creed: Origins, which lands in October and is set in ancient Egypt, eschews the rigid narratives of previous years in favor of open-world playing, a format that allows gamers to find something new every time they play. “The hero in our game is not the assassin, it is the world itself,” says Laurent Detoc, president of Ubisoft North and South…

2 min
the recommender

RUGGISH PLAY RUGS $199 “As a new mom, I’m always hunting for stylish baby goods so my apartment won’t look like a romper room. I was so excited to stumble upon these play mats— they have beautiful patterns on one side and fun maps on the other.” Danielle Dorn Creative director, Under the Canopy ELECTRA STRAIGHT 8 BIKE $1,050 “I love people watching and slow rolling on my bike. This Electra is one of my favorite possessions—a perfect mix of technology, style, and design.” Rob Martens Futurist and VP of strategy and partnerships, Schlage SWATCH WATCHES From $110 for watches pictured “I grew up in Switzerland, the land of watches, and my parents bought me a new Swatch each birthday. The brand is iconic and timeless—pun intended!” Beatrice Fischel-Bock Cofounder and CEO, Hutch HEATH CERAMICS HOUSEWARES $27 for each vase…