Trilogy Tidings
July 2015
in this issue

     This post is a bit early for its July date. I'm hopeful that you will pay attention before you take some well-deserved time off for summer fun and Independence Day celebrations. As usual, several topics to capture your interest.


     First, a piece about where "Big Data" may, or may not, fit in your business life. Second, an intriguing potential inflammation therapy that just might curtail the use of expensive biologic drugs.



Big data or genuine insight?           

     So "Big Data" is obviously the phrase du jour (or du week, month, year, decade?). I'm all for having access to lots of data. Properly managed and interpreted, Big Data can lead to better decisions, more satisfied customers, more successful businesses, maybe even a "better" society. Show me the benefits, and let's roll.


     But ... don't confuse Big Data with genuine insight. What am I talking about? Well, I'm talking about stuff like understanding customer needs and preferences, assessing the worth of a new technology or new-product idea, optimizing "customer experience" (sorry about that), deciding whether a contemplated M&A deal or partnering arrangement makes any sense, and the like.


     Despite what some may demand, the preferred output of such activities is insight, not some database. I acknowledge that the insight often must be supported by data in some form, but never forget that the truly valuable output is genuine insight.


     So, what does it take to stimulate genuine insight? Well, here are some general observations based upon my own experience. (The tactical details will depend upon the context of your inquiry, but you get the idea.)

  • Understand the field of inquiry. Ideally, be - or become - an expert.
  • Identify and communicate with the right people. And, reach out to them using the right communication vehicle(s).
  • Don't obsess about large numbers of information sources and statistical significance. More than 20-30 samples are almost never required, and statistical significance is a pipe dream.
  • Exploit the Web and social media with care. Be sure you understand who crafted the message and for what purpose. Exercise due diligence.

     When that a-hah moment arrives, you'll know you are (almost) done.


Are medical devices about to replace drugs?            

     Well ... no. But there are some promising ideas to that end in the field of neuromodulation.  Early work at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, part of the North Shore-LIJ Health System, suggests a possibility of controlling inflammation using bioelectronic devices.


     Specifically, research and early trials led by Kevin Tracey, MD, are underway aimed at the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease. A company, SetPoint Medical, has been formed to commercialize the Feinstein technologies. You can read an introduction to this initiative in H&HN Magazine; other descriptions of Tracey's work are readily available.


     The interface between the nervous and immune systems offers some intriguing and clinically important possibilities. Can bioelectronics work as therapy for diseases impacted by the immune system? When might such therapies emerge in the clinic?


What does Trilogy do? 
     Trilogy Associates facilitates business growth and renewal through commercialization of new products, providing the following services:
  • Opportunity assessment
  • Business planning and enterprise growth strategies
  • New-product conceptualization, commercialization and marketing
  • Market research and competitive assessment
  • Business development and partnering
  • Market and technological due diligence
  • Assessment of the therapeutic and diagnostic potential of novel technologies
  • Design of efficient and effective development strategies for early-stage biomedical products
  • Business and technical writing/publishing

     Inquiries to establish whether and how we might support your business initiatives are always welcome.  Contact us.

Resources from our Archives 
     Check out our Reading Room to view my published articles, presentations and white papers on a variety of topics.
     And, you can examine an archive of my prior newsletters (since February 2007).
Contact Information
Joseph J. Kalinowski, Principal