More on innovation

[Dave Birch] Forecasts of future events are heavily influenced by present circumstances. That’s why predictions are usually wrong. It’s hard to transcend current assumptions to obtain genuine insight. In the world of banking and payments, we are no different. Chris Skinner said:

Maybe I’m wrong … but I cannot think of one, bank-created innovation that has then permeated other industries. C’mon. I must be wrong. Give me one that banks created and is now seen in airlines, retailers, or elsewhere. Ah … hold on, here’s one. The ATM. The ATM is now in airports as self-service ticketing machines, and also in retailers as self-service checkout terminals.

I hate to argue with Chris (not really — we rather enjoy a good argument), but it’s the other way round. The ATM as we know it today was invented by at baggage handling company!

However, the modern, networked ATM was invented in Dallas, Texas, by Don Wetzel in 1968. Wetzel was a department head at an automated baggage-handling company called Docutel. In 1995 the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History recognized Docutel and Wetzel as the inventors of the ATM.

[From Automated teller machine – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia]


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