~95% of Bitcoin owned by ~5%

January 19, 2018 Leave a comment

I want to be the last to add fuel to the crypto mania, but I found this chart in a report by Credit Suisse (Blockchain 2.0, Jan 11 2018) interesting. Apparently about 95% of the Bitcoin are owned by roughly 5% of BitCoin addresses.

bitcon 8020

(The report, other than this is mostly forgettable).

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Categories: blockchain, Uncategorized Tags:

The Netflix of music

January 19, 2018 Leave a comment

spotifyInteresting article in the Economist on how Spotfiy (“the Netflix of music”) seems to be crushing it. Some facts:

  • It has 70M subscribers (3x what it has 3 years ago) compared to the about 30M that Apple Music claims
  • It has about 2 billion playlists, of which 20% belong to Spotify with the rest created by its users.
  • Getting on a Spotify playlist boosts a song’s streaming by 50-100%
  • A billion streams equates to roughly $7M for the labels, with about $1M going to the artists

Apparently, the big labels are wary of giving it too much control just as the studios were for Netflix. Well written article; definitely worth a read.

Categories: digital, music Tags:

Wonderful ‘little histories’

January 17, 2018 Leave a comment

While not directly related to consulting or tech, I wanted to share a wonderful set of books that I came across recently from Yale. They have undertaken to publish a set of books for both experienced and newbies on a set of subjects – religion, the world, economics, philosophy, science etc.

little history series

Having now read two of these (on religion, and on the world), I can testify that these are really well written, highly informative and (for me) eye opening. I’m looking forward to reading the others. The ones on economics and science may be especially informative towards this blog’s audience.

Categories: books Tags:

Doing less for greater success

January 17, 2018 Leave a comment

The WSJ has a review of a timely new book as people make resolutions for the new year.

great at work

Written by a recovering management consultant (Morten Hansen), he seems to extol what most successful people already do: focus. A couple of points caught my eye. One was his anecdote from consulting that it’s often the more junior consultants that have a hard time “letting go of the slides” and summarizing to just one. Another, was the fact that those who focused and said no to their bosses were ~25% higher in their performance ranking.

The key differentiating points in this book seems to be the reams of research (5 year survey of ~5000 people) on which the conclusions are based. His last book had good reviews on Amazon too. Maybe worth a read?

Categories: books, tips Tags:

World’s worst airports

January 15, 2018 Leave a comment

airportUnless you are super lucky and have entirely local cases, consulting inevitably means travel. And travel, usually means airports. And airports usually mean hell. Or so we think when the WiFi is not working, the plane is cancelled or if you are dragged off the plane (I think one has to pay for premium service for that last pleasure). But an article in the Economist that listed out how other airports in the world function gave me pause. Consider some of the highlights:

  • In Manila, officials plant bullets in your luggage and then demand bribes once they find them.
  • In Bangui, the pilots keep the hands on the throttle in case people rush the plane
  • In Juba (Sudan), the departure lounge has no toilets and no food
  • And in Miami, the time to get through immigration takes longer than it took Leif Erikson to cross the Atlantic in a longboat

So, something to be thankful for when you merely being abused, shouted at and insulted from the normal US based crews.

 

Categories: consulting, travel Tags: ,

Internet of Potholes

December 22, 2017 Leave a comment

potholeseasonAfter years of hype, it’s refreshing to see the IoT (Internet of Things) crowd finally do something useful for society. Apparently, Kansas City has used a bunch of pressure sensors, cameras and combined that with weather data to predict the likelihood of potholes with some success. In a limited study, it was able to successfully predict a pothole occurrence 85% of time and thereby stretch its budget by 30%. The company behind this is a small outfit called Xaqt out of Chicago.

Categories: iot, trends Tags:

Tip for increasing women participation

December 20, 2017 Leave a comment

Buried in the science section of the Economist was an interesting piece of data on how to encourage women’s participation in group settings.

gender

Essentially, they found that when a woman asks the first question in a group setting, it encourages more women to do so and much more than when a man asks the first question. Although the data was collected in academic settings, it would be interesting to apply that to group settings in business as well. Something for consultants to start trying in their teams for a start.

Categories: meetings Tags: ,