“But flexibility — an alluring word for white-collar workers, who may desire, say, working from home one day a week — can have a darker meaning for many low-income workers as a euphemism for unstable hours or paychecks. Legislators and activists are now promoting proposals and laws to mitigate the scheduling problems. But those who manufacture and study scheduling software, including Mr. DeWitt of Kronos, advocate a more direct solution: for employers and managers to use the software to build in schedules with more accommodating core hours. “The same technology could be used to create more stability and predictability,” said Zeynep Ton, a professor at M.I.T. who studies retail operations.”—
I have been blogging information about a shift in the power/equality civil freedom erosion in the US for the last couple of years. Suddenly because of Ferguson it is on everyone’s radar (rightly so). My thought has been that at sometime the “mask will come off” but then it will be too late.
Is it too late? Was this an unveiling? How will it be spun?
John Schloendorn is distributing “open source” plasmids, giving away proteins that normally cost biotech startups thousands of dollars per milligram, ready to be inserted into bacteria and reproduced at will, without any royalties.
"Peck’s work at Cornell’s Space Systems Design Studio has led to the development of Sprites, fully functional spacecraft each weighing less than a penny. You can think of a Sprite as a spacecraft on a chip without any constraints from onboard fuel."
“Amazon’s phone could be doomed for the same reasons that Google and Facebook had problems: making, and selling, hardware comes with unfamiliar challenges for companies that are used to running Web sites. Then again, Amazon has some things going for it that Google and Facebook don’t. For one thing, it controls what is, by some measures, the biggest store in the world.”—
Ultimately what can be the goal of this kind of anti trust like behavior? I find myself thinking it is a mere luxury, or status symbol. Sure the phones could be around for the next 20 years, but eventually it will fade away. I’m thinking of Hughes finally selling DirectTV after all those years.
“The report is all about carbon monoxide, a seemingly rare killer that’s actually the lead cause of poisoning deaths in America. Until now, it’s been hard for the government and safety experts to estimate how often CO leaks happen, because these events are self-reported by homeowners (who usually don’t report them). But using data culled from its army of Protects—anonymized, of course, to protect user privacy—Nest has revealed something surprising: CO events aren’t all that rare. In fact, .65 percent of users experienced a carbon monoxide event during the five months that Nest analyzed. Now, that doesn’t seem like very much; it’s less than one percent. But overall, Nest estimates that about .9 percent of households are exposed to high CO, which translates into 1.4 million households in the U.S., Canada, and the UK. That’s roughly the population of Philadelphia. “Nest Protect’s built-in sensors provide the ability to detect additional pieces of environmental data, run algorithms to determine the level of danger, and report that data in real time to further enhance our understanding of these events,” explains the company.”—
“Not only did we not expect it to end up in a museum design store, we didn’t plan on a business, or even a proper product. We launched NeoLucida because we were inspired by David Hockney’s book, Secret Knowledge. He used an antique camera lucida to see how great masters of art might have seen the world. So to give our students this experience, we decided to make an inexpensive camera lucida so more people could experiment. But when we received nearly 3000% over our goal, and 11,406 people backed the project, we found ourselves designing for the marketplace instead of making a simple, small scale experiment. So being part of the Kickstarter @MoMA collection is a thrill, but far from where we thought we would be last year.”—
Pablo Garcia on making the NeoLucida, and how it ended up in the MoMA Design Store. (via kickstarter)
"we found ourselves designing for the marketplace instead of making a simple, small scale experiment”
As big disruptive shifts hit the workplace we all get taken out of our comfort zones. Whereas once we felt in control, the stakes are evolving rapidly and our ability to adapt is falling behind. If we consider the recent gallup poll results that indicates that only a mere 30% of the workforce is actually committed to doing a good job, engaged, it really drives home the point that we may need to take a deeper look at the skills we have today, map them against the various trends that are impacting the workplace, and derive a view to the skills we will need moving forward.
A recent report published by the Institute for the Future (IFTF), does an outstanding job of identifying the key work skills and capabilities needed in the next few years (and arguably needed now).
“A bill that would require craft brewers to sell their suds to a beer distributor and make them buy it back to sell at their own breweries has cleared a Senate panel.
The measure (SB 1714) has so infuriated craft brewers and beer enthusiasts that some on Twitter have christened it with the hashtag “#growlergate.” The Community Affairs committee approved the bill Tuesday.
Sen. Jack Latvala, R-Clearwater, was so incensed at the idea of craft brewers having to pay someone else to sell their own product that he likened it to a mobbed-up racket. Latvala has championed the microbrewery cause.
The requirement is similar to paying “protection to ‘Vinnie’ in New York,” he said.
The bill also is favored by the Big Beer lobby, which is feeling the heat from craft beer’s competition.”—
“The Internet is different. With so much information, hyperlinked text, videos alongside words and interactivity everywhere, our brains form shortcuts to deal with it all — scanning, searching for key words, scrolling up and down quickly. This is nonlinear reading, and it has been documented in academic studies. Some researchers believe that for many people, this style of reading is beginning to invade when dealing with other mediums as well. “We’re spending so much time touching, pushing, linking, scrolling and jumping through text that when we sit down with a novel, your daily habits of jumping, clicking, linking is just ingrained in you,” said Andrew Dillon, a University of Texas professor who studies reading. “We’re in this new era of information behavior, and we’re beginning to see the consequences of that.””—Serious reading takes a hit from online scanning and skimming, researchers say - The Washington Post (via infoneer-pulse)
“Finally, money could also be created by gift. Digital coins could be issued to volunteers, charities, open source software firms, ecological and social justice organizations, and other people and organizations deserving support. So much important, socially necessary work goes unrewarded today. Issuing an alternative currency via such groups could remove some of their financial hardship once the currency becomes well-established. The recipients of newly issued money could be crowd-selected by the existing user base or some other voting system.”—
“So It’s quite possible mobile social will have lots of services indefinitely. This creates opportunities, but also a pretty basic challenge to Facebook. Partly in response, it paid first 1% of its market value for Instagram and now close to 10% for WhatsApp, taking not dominance but at the least two of the commanding heights of mobile social. That’s the right way to think about value, I think - not ‘OMG $16bn!”, but “is this worth 10% of Facebook?’ The deal values WhatsApp users at $35 each (very close to what Google paid for YouTube, incidentally), but the current market cap of Facebook values its MAUs at $140 or so.”—
Many many smart people already read Benedict Evan’s take on mobile stuff. His analysis of WhatsApp is a good reminder for me about the meaning of innovation - and for all the business and finance speak, that’s what Benedict talks about the most: the value of innovation.
And when I think about the financials of tech, what founders get on exit is one of the least interesting bits — it’s much more interesting to consider what the product — how people are using it, how often they come back, how they will use it in the future — is worth to companies that think in the future tense. In many cases, breaking it down to value per user gets closer to the point than the overall price tag.