Cue The Future


"I'm living in the future, so the present is my past" -Kayne West

Steve Jobs changes computing (again)

Dear Reader,  I apologize for the length of this article. It’s actually two articles smashed into one.  All together this post will take roughly 5 minutes to read.  I generally like to keep my posts shorter, but, I felt this level of completeness was required to deliver you any real value in a topic so loudly discussed as this product launch.
Thank you for reading.  -Tyler Willis

Today marked an historic announcement. Surprisingly, I’m not talking about Obama’s first State of the Union, but rather Steve Jobs’ unveiling of the new iPad.  So, how has Uncle Steve changed the game? Let’s take a look.

A perfect machine for Baby Boomers

I’m convinced the iPad is the perfect unit for a selling into a large market that hasn’t been catered to yet, has plenty of disposable income, and is would benefit the most immediately from what we will all come to recognize as a new type of computer: Baby Boomers.

At the time of the 2000 census, there were more than 79-million Baby Boomers in the US whom are now starting to slow down the pace of their daily lives as they transition towards retirement. Their personal computing needs (outside the office) aren’t very intensive — they communicate via email, read the news, share photos, maybe use video chat and do light research.

So, it would seem that current laptop or desktop computers do far more than is necessary for this audience.  And since added complexity often causes frustration, there may be a better solution. What would the perfect “home computer” for a boomer look like?

That machine would be:
– Simple to understand and use
– Quickly capable of completing tasks (see below)
– Be available whenever and wherever a need to interact with the digital world arose.

Here’s what that computer should be able to accomplish:
– Email/Calendar
– Booking movie tickets or reservations online
– Looking up references (online recipes, fact checking, manuals, etc.)
– Video chating with their family
– Storing pictures of family trips or events
– Occasionally doing light amounts of work
– Online Banking
(note: this is not intended to be exhaustive list,)

When you think about a machine that handles those common tasks well, and does so in a very responsive and always accessible way, the iPad is really the first good answer (more will follow if the iPad is successful).

Apple creates Ambient Computing

This type of machine represents a new concept — Ambient Computing.  Ambient Computing is robust enough to handle most computing tasks but requires much less effort to access than a traditional computer.

The most impressive innovation, and the one that truly makes Ambient Computing possible, was the A4 chip.  That chip is at the hart of the new devices speed and responsiveness. While, I hope this new chip design extends to the iPhone in the future, it currently, makes the iPad capable of near-instant boot and it empowers applications to be incredibly responsive.  It removes all of the experience associated with computing other than getting into your desired program and completing your goal.

If Apple has built a machine that almost entirely removes the starting cost of completing an action on a traditional computer (which, even in good scenarios, often takes 20-30 seconds on non apple machines), then it has created a machine that’s much more capable of capturing cognitive inspiration from it’s owner – making you, as the user, more likely to act on your ideas.  Apple is already good at this (going from sleep/closed to working on a new macbook is generally a sub-10 second proposition), but carrying a laptop with you everywhere is a nuisance, and pulling a computer out of your bag for a 1 minute task in most situations is awkward (and often rude). Smartphones already handle these issues well, but they are generally sluggish and unreliable for anything but the simplest tasks.

Bridging the accessibility of a mobile device with the robustness and trustworthiness of a full computer, will appeal to the large audience generally — which will grow over time.  But, Apple’s best bet for establishing this device category is to put up impressive sales numbers for the first model.  There’s also a huge immediate ability to replace the standard machine for lightweight home PC users – like baby boomers, as outlined above — or families, as outlined by Kottke.  If I was Scott Forstall, I’d be focused on empowering applications that resonate heavily with this crowd:  cookbooks come to mind, board games also, news/photos/communication will be killer (and already are on the machine), what else?

Sure, there are fairly unacceptable limitations like no camera, no easy solution for printing/scanning periphery, and questionable support of other screens (TV) for media content, which will have to be ironed out in V2. There are also broader reaching issues that might cause trouble for Apple: like the lack of flash support and the inability to show and track most web advertisements in mobile Safari. But with the hardware improvements announced today, the content and consumer-billing relationships Apple has built, and the knowledge that they can improve over several generations (do you remember the first iPod?), I think we are looking at a large market that Apple has a good chance of succeeding in.

That’s why I’m bullish on the iPad. With the keyboard dock, this could be a full-on replacement PC for some non-power consumers (Think of  WebTV — and trust me, WebTV users didn’t need multi-tasking). For heavier users, this still provides a great “ambient computing” experience that can allow someone to act on their immediate thoughts with far lower effort (creating more personal value), while still having a more robust machine capable of handling more demanding tasks.

I’m concerned about the movement away from open systems, but, that doesn’t change the writing on the wall for this type of device need — kudos to Apple for seeing and defining a great first step at an ambient computing device that I expect to become a category definer.

Great job Apple.

Ancillary thoughts that might be interesting to you:
– Who called this first?  Carl Howe back in 2005?
– I think the computing setup of the future looks like cheapish, durable long-term machines at home and work (think mac mini), smartphone for always there, and a “slate” for heavier-duty work that can travel with you. Phones and slates will change every 1-2 years, the stable machines will go 4-6.  Heavy duty tasks (ex: quickbooks), will migrate towards the slate over time.  At some point, you’ll see home/work machines becoming just docks/enhancements to the “brain” of your slate.  Slates will have to allow for more open computing for this future to occur (i.e. the iPad technology will have to run/support full OSX.
– Many of my friends hate the lack of multi-tasking. Let me make a bold statement: multi-tasking is not important in ambient computing, which, by it’s nature, will be most useful for single tasking.  Multi-tasking is a nice to have, but one that threatens Apple’s music sales (streaming pandora vs. using itunes) and encourages pundits to classify the machine as a replacement computer (hmm, kinda like I’m doing above), which Apple doesn’t want as it would set consumer expectations for the device too high and possibly cannibalize laptop sales (which are much higher margin right now).

Value in Social Networks

Had a great lunch with two really smart folks – the following was asked, and it rattled a theme around my head.

What if you had to prove (through actions) that you had already provided real value to someone, before you could “friend” them?   What would a social network look like if  every one of your “friends” was guaranteed to have listened to your advice, in a meaningful way, at least once in the past?

Social Networks evolve in a way that demonstrates how people use different tools for interacting:

  1. with their closest friends (email/sms/fbmsg for me)
  2. with their core audience (RSS/4sq for me)
  3. with their broader but still relevant audience (RSS/Twitter/FB for me)
  4. with the people they want to denote social relationships with (LinkedIn and Facebook for me).

What tends to happen with successful social networks is that they have a core value to the first user and some incentives to connect with friends (LinkedIn is better than traditional resumes and you look more valuable with better social proof).

But, after reaching a core network size where the product is optimized for relevant information or connections, the incentive continues to push growth; the network starts to signal relationships over information and becomes less relevant.  That’s happened to LinkedIn and to Facebook.

Facebook’s investing in games (and other platform apps), to maintain the users attention and keep them motivated in the quest for ultimate “connection with everything.”  As a result, Facebook’s got a broad ownership of your entire social graph (how you connect broadly to companies, products, people) — it’s probably going to win there.

So, if you want to build a social entity, don’t compete on the broader data play — ask yourself what niche information can you get detail and clarity on that either users or marketers care about?

Back to the original question — I’d find a network that shared the people that are influenced by the people I influence (Think LinkedIn, back when you only had 150 connections).  I could understand whom you actually have a good relationship with, so that I could ask for good quality introductions from you, or discuss relevant people with you.

There are a lot of other niche plays available to us out there. That’s where the hustlers should focus right now.

Typifying two tracks of the healthcare reform

*Update* video of this talk (10min) is now up at

I’m writing this at San Diego State University, where I’m about to give the last talk at the BILPIL conference (an un-conference version of TEDMED, an event that celebrates conversations on innovative health and medicine). I’m officially the least qualified person here — and seemingly the only one not involved with healthcare, but one of the organizers recruited me to speak after reading my post from last month, “A plausible future of health care.”

I readily agreed, because the speakers are unreal talented (Joe Trippi, Aubrey De Grey, Dr. Ben Goertzel, Dr. Philip Steven Low, and Jen McCabe).  The schedule today opened with Dr. David Rosenman from the Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation and closed with me.  Yep, that’s how I like to roll.  :)

Lately, when it comes to healthcare, I’ve been thinking a lot about Dr. Jay Parkinson‘s focus on creating a market-based solution for better doctor-patient relationships without accepting the handcuffs of working with insurance companies. He seems to have given up on public reform — in face of the immensely bad odds public reform faces, I don’t blame him, but I have arrived to the conclusion that public reform is still necessary.  This presentation is my effort at exploring both of those tracks (private market solutions and public reform) and figure out how they work together.  I’m still learning this stuff, so please give me your feedback!

A Plausible Future of Health

The sub-title to this piece is “Patient-Advocates as Harbringers of Hope in the Health Care System.”

Disclaimer: I am a Libertarian-Progressive. I generally trust markets more than I trust government, primarily because I think it’s easier to inspire real change and harder to make massive mistakes in the free market — however I think government must harness the power of markets and put bumper-rails in to protect the masses from greed overdoses. I supported Barack Obama in the 2008 election and continue to do so. In advance of his healthcare speech, and at the tail-end of a lengthy vacation where I discussed my views, I decided to pen the following missive.

This post is about 1250 words, if, like most, you are far too lazy to read something of that length, here’s a good summary:  

Today, doctors are manipulated by the fear of malpractice into recommending unnecessary procedures that individuals accept because of an information disadvantage. We have little compulsion to overcome this disadvantage because we are not the primary buyers of our own health care. The current position is untenable, and it’s in our interest to influence change with the free market. There are models we can build off, and in the future, it seems likely that patient-advocates will possess the medical knowledge and fiduciary responsibility to allow their clients to decrease their personal costs and increase their quality of life despite a broken system, beating the path down good health reform.  I’ve called this new industry “FutureHealth” in my own thinking, but I don’t like the way that sounds. Can you suggest a better name in the comments? 

OK, that wraps up the word sushi, on with the more gluttonous show…

I backed Obama for his strength in foreign policy and the economy, on those fronts he’s made careful and reasonable decision –curbing a massive economic decline while positioning the US well abroad (specifically regarding War in the Middle East and the Iran Election). He’s done us one better and placed his political chips on the table of the most pressing economic issue today: health care.

People often take issue with framing health care as an economic issue — at it’s core it deals with the life and well-being (or lack there-of) of human beings, so it’s clearly a social issue, and yet — 20% of total government spending is on medicaid/medicare and both government and personal health spending are rising at rapacious rates (2 to 3 percent faster than inflation). If we don’t fix health care, it will bankrupt well before it kills.

There have been a series of fascinating articles this summer exposing the perverse economics of health care — two stand out: Atul Gawande’s watershed piece in The New Yorker, “McAllen, Texas and the high cost of health care” and, more recently, David Goldhill’s piece in the Atlantic Monthly, “How American Health Care Killed My Father.” Both conclude the incentive structure of the medical system is broken. The Doctors, fearing malpractice suits, recommend unnecessary procedures. Patients, at a severe information disadvantage and with little skin in the game perceived when it comes to payment, accept this recommendation. Insurance foots the bill and in search of greater profits tries to shirk as many payouts as possible and, if faced with an inability to do so, raises rates (making it harder for individuals to maintain health insurance).

The heart of the health care problem therefore seems to be unnecessary procedures (estimated at 30% of annual medical costs) and lack of innovation in the patient experience.

To solve both issues, patients must become the central focus of the system. By creating strong financial incentives for patients to judiciously use health care you would create a health services industry that must curb costs and cater to the patient’s experience, improving care, along with an information industry that will eliminate the information disadvantage that allows patients to be easily manipulated today.

Unfortunately, a quick, sweeping change (legislative or otherwise), requiring individuals to foot more medical bills is unlikely (at best) to happen when one of the largest industries is involved, people’s pocketbooks are at stake and there’s no existing use to defend that this system will be preferable in the long-run. Our brains are bad at evaluating risk-reward when the status quo is an option (for however briefly) and the risk involves our health and our savings account.

This means the change must happen gradually, and likely (at least initially) through market forces rather than legislation.

Luckily, there is already a subset of early adopters that care aggressively about health and patient experience and have been spurring innovation on both fronts: the wealthy.

The wealthy have developed a tool that helps them navigate the complexities of health care, enjoy a better patient experience, and obtain the information and access required for better preventive care: concierge doctors. Concierge (also known as “boutique”) doctors require extra cost from a more limited subset of patients who receive expiriential perks like same-day appointments and higher levels of access to their doctor. These can range from the expensive MD2 (24K/year for a family) to the relatively inexpensive (I pay $150/yr to a concierge practice in San Francisco), but access and benefit tends to flow linearly across that range (at the end of the day you’re buying time from highly skilled, valuable people).

Boutique medicine puts the patient in the buyer’s seat and creates an opportunity for the patient to take much more control of their health and utilize preventive care to decrease health needs. Once the patients health costs are more predictable (and probably far below the average), the concierge relationship helps the patient gain information advantage to increase confidence in making alternative purchasing decisions, perhaps self- or co-operative insuring.

So, there’s a clear path to improving health care, and the first hurdle in our way is visible and defined. A company that can accomplish the same (or similar) effect as boutique doctors for the rest of us will create the passage point to the future of health care.

At the highest level, this new class of doctors need not be doctors at all, but rather “patient-advocates” that maintain enough medical knowledge to ensure proper care and are capable of supporting and helping patients through both simple and complex medical situations. At the lowest levels, this function may be a game or service that encourages more healthful activity (think DailyMile, tweetwhatyoueat, FourSquare, or others).

There are many people in this FutureHealth industry, but one seems particularly well-placed to bring about the next step in the industry’s evolution, a small company called HelloHealth (disclaimer: Jay Parkinson, CEO of HelloHealth, is a friend). They are creating a platform where doctors can interact with patients in a more traditional primary-care role: hands-on, preventive care administered in a personal fashion. To the extent that HelloHealth can create technical tools that help their doctors save time (like automated paperwork, electronic patient interactions, and more), they can lower the cost of access for patients into a realm affordable for the average joe (they seem to have already gotten into the high-end of this range).

Finally, I’ve dubbed this new industry “FutureHealth” in my head, but I don’t like the way that sounds. Can you suggest a better name in the comments? 


Edit Notification: I published the first draft of this on my blackberry without review; I have sense gone back and fixed any typos and lack of links I could find. I have sent this to a few knowledgeable friends for feedback. I may edit again for clarity based on their suggestions.

Happy New Year

Every year I write a long email update to my friends, which you can sign up for on the far right hand side of this site. This year I’m also posting it on this blog as an experiment. The following is the full, unedited text of that email.

Happy New Years!  You are receiving this email from me because I want to keep you updated on what I’m up to. I send out between 1 and 4 emails like this a year (but always one on New Years Day) and focus on big updates and “best-of” tidbits to share.

If you’ve never received an update from me before, it means you signed up on my website for an update or that I added you to the list — you probably did something that was awesome enough for me to say, “Hey I should keep in touch with them.”  If you thought I was less awesome, or don’t want to receive these updates from me in the future, please accept my apology and unsubscribe (or reply to this message and let me know — I’ll unsubscribe you by hand).

I hope to summarize my year for you and then proffer a few lessons I’ve learned. Finally I’ll include a few links I feel are worth sharing. This is the longest message I’ve ever written, if you’ve only got the inclination to read one part, please skip to the end and read the segment titled Reflection and Projection – it’s the part I feel is most important and that I’m most proud of.


This message is broken into several parts and should take about 9 minutes to read all the way through. Each section can be read independently of the other sections and includes a title and estimated reading time at the beginning.


Summary of 2008  (estimated reading time: 3.5 Minutes)

I’ve always found the act of waiting for a specific day to look back and project forward a year a little ritualistic and weird, but it does create an interesting phenomenon — my friends seem to be singularly focused on reflection and projection and that makes it easier to see what friends, mentors and idols are doing. This is good because applying the lessons they’ve learned is a great way to improve.  And with tools like Twitter, Tumblr, Blogs, and Facebook, sharing those lessons is easier than ever – making massive emails like this valuable. I think in the next 5 years or so, I’ll be able to send yearly updates via a service that makes email less valuable.  I’ve started doing that already by posting this note on my blog (link)

2008 was a heck of a year, I struggle with picking the parts to summarize. I turned 22 this year, and, largely speaking, 2008 has been one dedicated to making Involver succeed.  For those of you that don’t know my company, we help marketers distribute and track video campaigns on social networks, like Facebook. The company is young, and it’s been a wild and fun ride watching it succeed.

With regards to that work, Involver has truly had a breakout year. At this time last year we were subleasing a small office in Palo Alto and were yet another unheard of startup, toiling in a popular and crowded industry.  In the first quarter of the New Year we established some great success with the Help Vinay campaign (which registered 26,000 South Asians for the bone marrow registry in 6 weeks) moved to a new office in the financial district of San Francisco and changed our name to Involver. Following that we launched our Pilot Program and started creating commercial campaigns. Now, brands that have used Involver’s platform include Puma, Chiquita Banana, Maker’s Mark, Reader’s Digest, Serena Software and Not only that but our first commercial campaign won an OMMA, the industry leading award for Online Marketing, and our campaign for resulted in $300,000 for loans to entrepreneurs in the developing world.   This generated some amazing press for the company — we’ve been featured by countless bloggers and appeared in Inc., Wired and PBS — and Inc. Magazine named our co-founders two of the “Top 30 Entrepreneurs under 30 Years Old”.  And we moved, again, to bigger offices; we’re now in the SOMA district of San Francisco.  Just imagine what we’ll be able to do with a year of experience under our belts and you’ll see why I’m so excited about next year.  J

I’ve taken my work close to heart this year, but I still was able to take some time to have a personal life. In 2008, I moved apartments twice in an effort to experience more of this city and continually vary my experience (being open to randomness is a very effective way to grow quickly). I’m now in a beautiful place and have really enjoyed the live music, better access to transportation, and ample eateries in my new neighborhood.

I also launched a new personal website — — which chronicles my life and aggregates a lot of information about me. If you’re interested in more frequent updates on who I am and what I’m up to, that’s a great resource, and if you want the up to the minute updates, I post often to two services that allow for frequent but short updates, you can always visit my profiles on twitter or tumblr for that. 

I spent much of my remaining free time this year supporting Barack Obama by writing articles, donating, and hosting an event — my birthday party featured live music and raised several hundred dollars for the campaign — I believe he represents an amazing opportunity for American politics and I’m ecstatic that he’s our leader.  There is a movement growing in America, which is making politics attractive again to the best and brightest. Our political system will benefit from the economic collapse and a generational changing of the guard, and there is great opportunity to improve the system. I’ll be participating on a more local level in 2009 and implore you to do the same.

In the bucket that qualifies as both personal and work life, I made some strides as well. Early in the year I hosted a massively successful event, called Weekend Apps, which launched 11 new companies and brought together 100+ entrepreneurs to work together in new ways — around the same time, I shut down the consultancy I’d founded. Willis Media Group had a good roster of clients, but at the end of the day, I simply couldn’t get it to profitability. I learned a lot about struggle and the difficulties of service businesses, and even more about the value of limited liability — but life has trotted on nicely despite that failure.

Finally, I was also blessed with the opportunity to travel around the country a bit, in 2008 I visited New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Denver, Kansas City, Salt Lake City, Black Rock City, and Vancouver. I took two road trips through the West and Pacific Northwest and was able to reflect on the joys of travel and it’s importance to maintaining a healthy mind. On these trips, I took up a copy of Jack Kerouac’s “On the Road” and yet again found inspiration there for my traveler’s soul.

I closed out the year in the most fantastic fashion, by doing an 18,000 foot skydive in Monterey Bay with very good friends who are all as excited about the future as I am. I was happy to be surrounded by them and their optimism, the same way I’m happy to be surrounded by you and your experience, intelligence and friendship heading into 2009.


Looking Ahead   (estimated reading time: 1.5 minutes)

2009 is poised to be a great year for Involver. The horrible financial crisis seems to be affecting almost every vertical in the industry except the ones we’ve focused on. I’ve heard that recessions don’t slow trends, they speed them up – and that would seem to be true. With advertising budgets dropping across the world, most agencies and companies are reporting increases in video and social media spend. We’re hiring and I think we’re well positioned to grow by helping more marketers run more effective and successful campaigns. The trends are on our side — and we’ve got more money and experience than we did at this time last year — I’m very excited for 2009!  I’ll also be hosting some events, the largest so far planned being SF Startup Weekend 2 in the spring.

2008 has also really excited me for the future on a larger scale than just work. Specifically when it comes to the possibilities of space.  Watching the Mars Phoenix mission (link) filled me with a sense of wonder and awe, and was a moment I felt truly engaged with what was unfolding. I was lucky enough to meet Peter Diamandis shortly afterwards and in a span of about 15 minutes, he convinced me that there was a tangible way to funnel that excitement into compelling action.

So, this year I joined the International Association of Space Entrepreneurs and started supporting the X Prize Foundation. In the next 12 months I plan on attending several space related conferences and events, read and write more about industry successes and failures, and explore ways to volunteer some time or resources to help groups at the cutting edge of commercializing space access. I can’t think of a more exciting way to spend my free time than supporting this burgeoning industry.

I’m also planning several trips.  In addition to work travel, I’d like to make it to either Dubai or India for a vacation and I will be returning to Black Rock City for the Burning Man festival in late 2009.

Reflection and Projection  (estimated reading time: 2 minutes)

It’s plain to see that I’m an optimist, sometimes more than is socially comfortable. The ease with which I dismiss the disastrous economic decline above serves as one example of that. I wrote that the recession will benefit our political system, and, before I cut this line, as having “rewarded our company for methodical execution and ruthless efficiency by removing competitors from the landscape.”  I make no mention of the disastrous effects on millions of people, and the great uncertainty that grips any well-briefed mind, because it truly doesn’t stand in the foreground of my mind (despite suffering personal loss of wealth).

Our species is running towards a precipice with looming dangers like economic decline, political unrest, climate crisis, and more threatening to grip us as we jump off the edge, but my optimism is stronger now than ever before. On the other side of that looming gap are extraordinary breakthroughs in healthcare, communications technology, access to space, human productivity, artistic creation and literally hundreds of fields. With the right execution and a little bit of luck we’ll all live to see these breakthroughs — and members of my generation will live to see dramatically lengthened life-spans, exploration and colonization of space, and more opportunity than ever to work for passion instead of simply working for pay.

Instead of taking this space to regale you with the many personal and focused changes I intend to make in 2009, let me rather encourage you to spend time this year thinking, as I’m going to, more about what we can do in 2009 to positively affect the future our culture will face in 2020, 2050, 3000 and beyond.

Support stabilization efforts in governmental structures, by joining the change congress movement or forming, researching, refining and voicing your opinions at, the new open government system Obama’s administration is attempting to create. Volunteer for an organization that you think is going past triage, and actually doing something to solve a major problem systemically — do the triage also, but let’s work a little harder and make some headway on these problems.

These don’t have to be big efforts, but they should be continual and properly focused.  A group of us, doing small actions continually, will inspire larger groups and result in larger change.  There’s a trend of human’s banding together to build a better future that we can align with and help propel.  Remember Margaret Mead, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

I’m excited for 2009, and I look forward to sharing it with you.  I hope to build more frequency into this email list, and as such would love to hear about what you’d like to hear from me.  Please don’t hesitate to ever email me at

Happy New Year!

Tyler Harrison Willis

Things Worth Sharing           

·  My friend Ramit is giving away $2500 to a young person with a concrete idea for social innovation. Deadline is Jan. 15th

·  Malcolm Gladwell gave a great talk at The Moth, it’s a tall tale about his experience getting into Journalism.

·   Explaining the political awakening of Generation X in the form of an apology to politically active Boomers for taking so long.

·  A 4-minute-long video about wearable computers. Something I think will change personal interaction in the next 10-15 years.

·  The evolution of wearable, non-intrusive displays. Extremely important to improving the move towards wearable computing.

·  A good mini video bio of my favorite modern poet, Rives, watch it, then watch this:

·  An elegant short story about the subject of death.

·  Several very good remixes of Silversun Pickups songs.

·  How to create the bullet-time effect from the matrix cost effectively.

About the Author

Tyler Willis is the Vice President of Business Development at Unified, which builds enterprise marketing technology for brands and agencies.

This blog is about how the future will affect technology, marketing, and the things we care about most. Learn more about Tyler.


Tyler is a featured speaker and instructor for The American Marketing Association, and is a popular speaker on topics related to social marketing and how technology is changing our lives.

Recent engagements:
- South by Southwest
- American Marketing Association
- TMP Directional Marketing Client Summit

Email for Speaking Requests.

Lightweight Update

I write infrequent (quarterly at most), semi-formal updates of what I'm doing and thinking.