Rights: University of Waikato. All rights reserved. Published 4 December 2013 Download

Simon Feasey, founder of Revolution Fibres, discusses what innovation and invention mean within the context of product development.

Jargon alert

3D printer a machine that makes a three-dimensional solid object of virtually any shape from a digital model.

A challenge for students

Look at how different people in different Innovation stories define innovation. Compare these with various definitions available online and identify common elements. Discuss and compile an agreed definition in groups or as a class.


Simon Feasey

Innovation for us is taking existing products and making them more efficient, making them better, improving them as opposed to inventing brand new products for problems that might be out there. We’re really looking to enhance products, and so the innovation is understanding the technology, understanding the product that we can produce and how to integrate it into existing products.

We do some invention, you know, absolutely, when we’re developing our machine. Just simple parts that we make on our 3D printer, you know, we invent them because they don’t exist already. But with respect to our actual products that we produce for customers, it’s much more aligned with innovation because we’re looking at their product and how we can enhance that product, what weaknesses they may have and how nanofibre can address that to solve their issues.

Revolution Fibres:
Simon Feasey
Iain Hosie, Albert McGhee, Cody McClure, Hansol Cha
Gareth Beckermann

The Royal Society of New Zealand, TVNZ 7 in partnership with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment