If it ain’t broke….Pylons, 08 Numbers and the quest for constant innovation

With the loss of one of the world’s greatest inventors (Apple’s Founder, Steve Jobs) innovation has been a topic of much debate recently. Lots of people have been pontificating about the increased pace of change and need for continual development so that things work better, faster, harder.

Sometimes, though, innovation takes time.

Take electricity pylons. Despite the criticality of electricity to our lives, the familiar “triangle” design of the pylons that carry this valuable commodity hasn’t changed since the 1920s.

The simple fact is that there is no real need to innovate in the field of electricity pylons. They are functional and efficient – in fact more efficient than laying cables underground which costs 10 times more to install and also to repair.

So the only reason to change the design is to reduce costs further or improve the aesthetics.

Energy Secretary Chris Huhne was part of the judging for a recent completion organised by the Royal Institute of British Architects to design a new type of pylon. He said, “The idea was to… see whether we could produce something which was more attractive, less obtrusive in the landscape, easier to live with, easier on the eye.”

The competition winner was a Danish engineering firm which came up with a T-shaped design (see picture). This was billed as a “no-nonsense” structure which, it says, can be painted to suit the surrounding landscape.

Personally, I prefer some of the other designs (see http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-15293922) but then this is purely my opinion and nothing to do with how innovative the designs are.

The old adage, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” still stands but needs to be updated, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, but see if you can make it look better”.

Here at 08Direct.co.uk we like this principle. The world of communications technology has moved on immeasurably in recent years but the fact remains that we humans like to speak to each other more than any other form of communication. So, there may be new technologies but the phone has been a key part of our lives for more than a century and will continue to be so because people know it, are comfortable with it and are attached to it. So the phone number you use is as important as ever before for your business.


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