by, Bill McKee, Xerox Global Public Relations

Earlier this week, Xerox CTO Sophie Vandebroek blogged about how True Innovation Meets Today’s Business Challenges Head On.  She described the innovation delivering more than 1,600 patents to Xerox and its partners.  What is exciting is the scientists who are working on new ways to deliver those patentable ideas.

Sophie is fond of quoting Alan Kay, a researcher at the Palo Alto Research Center in the 70s, who used to say: “The best way to predict the future is to invent it.” And that is what we have been doing ever since.

I have had the opportunity to walk the halls and talk to researchers at four of the five global research centers; those at PARC, Canada, France and Webster, N.Y.  Those researchers seem like normal people in conversation.  But what does it take to have a brilliant mind to “invent the future”?

Xerox scientists are working in areas you would never imagine. As an example, if you live in Los Angeles, or any major city, you know the agony of finding a parking space. Beginning this spring LA will have a new parking strategy designed to relieve traffic congestion, reduce air pollution, and improve the efficiency of downtown LA’s transit operations. The LA ExpressParkTM  will infuse Xerox innovation and demand-based pricing into a unique parking management program. Who would have thought researchers from our centre in Grenoble, France would play a key role in helping drivers on our West Coast.

In a great video, one of our researchers from Grenoble, Marco Bressan, who is also chief innovation officer for Xerox Global Transportation Solutions, talks about how Xerox is helping the transportation industry deliver cost efficient service by making use of data that already exists.

So how do these few examples contribute to Focus Friday — without doubt they are helping people and businesses focus on their priorities…their real business.

And there is more to come…in a few weeks let me talk to you about new ways researchers will play a role in delivering health care.