The Economist had a nice article on Uber this week and how it’s poised for world domination.
Apparently, it now operates in 72 countries, 425 cities, with an estimated revenue of ~$4B/year. However, most of Uber’s bookings are just made in 20 of those 425 cities. Worth a quick scan.
For those that are tired of having just a surface level understanding of BitCoin and BlockChain, one could do worse than read a new book by academics at Princeton.
It doesn’t dumb anything down, but at the same time the authors try to explain things in a relatively clear way. And as you can see from the table of contents, it’s pretty comprehensive. (If you don’t want to buy the book, apparently there’s a freely available PDF here. If you don’t want to read, the video lectures are here )
The Economist has a nice special report on AI – both a little history and its implications here. A couple of titbits caught my eye:
- “Instead of people writing software, we have data writing software”
- It was not till 2012 that deep learning came to fore
- Only 0.5% of American workers are employed in industries that emerged since 2000
- A Japanese firm is selling weird looking goggles to help thwart facial recognition systems
Well worth the read.
Private Equity never ceases to surprise me. The NYTimes today has another story about aggressive moves private equity has made into ambulance and fire services and the severely negative impact that has has on people. Some tidbits:
- Private companies now represent 25% of all ambulance providers, and 4% of fire service
- Private equity firms now manage more money (~$4.3T) than the GDP of Germany
- One of the firms sent a collections notice to an infant girl born in its ambulance
- Another firm was too late to get to a fire (and the house burned down), but it still sued the owner
Read and weep.
With over 300 (and counting) IoT platforms out there (and new ones sprouting up like rabbits – e.g. ones from HP, Samsung, Hitachi..), one would think there would a clear paper that describes the landscape to the poor souls that actually have to make a decision.
Alas, the poor souls will have to wait a while longer: The latest addition to the corpus of IoT papers, this time from PTC / Oreilly – Evaluating and Choosing an IoT Platform – is unfortunately not one that will help clarify much.
(The best one that I’ve seen is the one from IoT analytics )
The New Yorker has a funny piece on the perils of conference calls that left me laughing.
It is for these reasons that most people prefer to be silent during the call, with their phones in speaker mode and muted. This is a good time to shower, write the word “Why?” on a notepad until the ink runs dry, or organize your closet by color. Every once in a while, I like to unmute and chime in with a “Yes,” “No,” or “I agree.” About what, I have no idea.
I think that most (knowledge) workers can relate to this form of torture.