The Deliberate Awfulness of Social Media
- One way of framing the problem would be to say that he thinks like an engineer, in that his argument is an explanation of how a particular system, social media, operates, and how it might be improved by tinkering with certain aspects of it.
- Bridle doesn’t want to convince you to delete your social-media accounts, although you might be more likely to do so as a result of having read his book than Lanier’s.
- (The silver lining to this toxic cloud is that pretty soon we’ll be able to blame all our idiocies on climate change.) Bridle’s apocalyptic vision can itself be mind-numbing, in its way: it is a relentlessly gloomy book, and to read it is to risk suffocating any remaining hope you might have for the future, any sense that catastrophe might yet be averted or mitigated.
His 2020 Campaign Message: The Robots Are Coming
- Mr. Yang, a former tech executive who started the nonprofit organization Venture for America, believes that automation and advanced artificial intelligence will soon make millions of jobs obsolete — yours, mine, those of our accountants and radiologists and grocery store cashiers.
- Scrutiny of tech companies like Facebook and Google has increased in recent years, and worries about monopolistic behavior, malicious exploitation of social media and the addictive effects of smartphones have made a once-bulletproof industry politically vulnerable.
- He has proposed paying for a basic income with a value-added tax, a consumption-based levy that he says would raise money from companies that profit from automation.
- A recent study by the Roosevelt Institute, a left-leaning policy think-tank, suggested that such a plan, paid for by a progressive tax plan, could grow the economy by more than 2 percent and provide jobs for 1.1 million more people.
After Years of Abusive E-mails, the Creator of Linux Steps Aside
- After years of verbally abusing programmers who contribute to the Linux operating-system kernel he created, the celebrated coder Linus Torvalds is stepping aside and says he is getting help.
- Guido van Rossum, a white, male programmer from the Netherlands, invented the code for the Python programming language.
- “A project attracts people who fit in the culture,” van Rossum told me, adding that if the leaders communicate abusively “it will attract people who either share that attitude, or at least don’t see a problem with it.” Van Rossum, who now lives in the Bay Area, said the Python community shows that the number of women working on open-source software projects can be increased.
- “He said he was willing to mentor women personally, if that is what it takes to improve the diversity,” Wijaya recalled, “but I didn’t reach out to him.” The next year, she attended the same conference.
'An apocalyptical onslaught to their models and profit margins': Why media agencies are on their death bed
- And while many media buying agencies at that time vowed to clean up their practices — their future is more grim than ever, according to a report released by the market research firm Forrester earlier this week.
- For instance, marketers have called into question agencies' ability to gauge whether ad spending actualy works, while focusing on what they see as wasteful media plans, irregular ad rates and unclear discounts.
- With programmatic advertising becoming widespread, anybody from agencies and marketers to programmatic consultancies can now automate the media-buying process.
- In a programmatic environment, media agencies no longer retain any buying power (clout and negotiating — staples of TV buying — don't really matter much), and the wide availability of demand-side platform technology commoditizes their offerings, forcing them to look for other areas to bring value.
Red Hat falls after revenue disappoints
- Red Hat stock fell as much as 7 percent and then rebounded on Wednesday after the company reported lower revenue than expected for the second quarter of its 2019 fiscal year, which ended on Aug. 31.
- Analysts polled by FactSet had expected $724.1 million in subscription revenue.
- With respect to guidance for the fiscal third quarter, Red Hat is forecasting 87 cents per share, excluding certain items, on around $848 million to $856 million in revenue.
- Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had expected guidance of 92 cents per share, excluding certain items, on $862.7 million in revenue for that period.
- As for the full 2019 fiscal year, Red Hat said it lowered revenue estimates by $15 million specifically because of foreign-exchange rates.
- Analysts were expecting full-year results of $3.47 in earnings per share, excluding certain items, on $3.40 billion in revenue, according to Thomson Reuters.
Amazon is reportedly planning up to 3,000 cashierless stores by 2021
- Amazon is reportedly considering opening 3,000 of its cashierless stores by 2021, Bloomberg said on Wednesday, based on conversations with people familiar with the matter.
- The e-commerce giant's push into retail would threaten the likes of convenience stores and fast-food chains across the U.S. selling items for customers in a pinch for time.
- The existing Amazon Go stores primarily sell grab-and-go food items like prepared sandwiches, salads, yogurt and granola bars.
- The company is reportedly planning to have about 10 Amazon Go locations open by the end of this year, people familiar with Amazon's plans told Bloomberg.
- And those people, who requested anonymity discussing internal conversations, said Amazon aims to have 50 shops in "major metro areas" like San Francisco and New York by 2019.
- The first Amazon Go location in downtown Seattle required more than $1 million in hardware, a person familiar with those expenses told Bloomberg.
Watch Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos talk about space at Air Force Association conference
- The CEO of Amazon will talk about the space industry, as well as Blue Origin, the space venture he founded.
- While Bezos may be better known for building the e-commerce empire, his entrepreneurial work at Blue Origin is increasingly getting noticed.
- Bezos pours about $1 billion of his Amazon stock into Blue Origin each year and he's only expected to up that amount.
- Bezos has said publicly that Blue Origin is "the most important work" he's doing.
- Blue Origin is headed quickly toward commercial operations as the company nears the end of testing for several of its major projects.
- Its BE-4 engine, the thunderous staple of Blue Origin's propulsion business, has demonstrated that it "works, and works well," CEO Bob Smith told CNBC in April.
- The company also hopes to soon launch humans into space on its New Shepard rocket, which has flown nine times.
EU investigating German automakers, alleging collusion on emissions tech
- The European Commission said on Tuesday that it is opening an investigation into possible collusion among Volkswagen Group, BMW, and Daimler to avoid competition on developing state-of-the-art emissions control technology.
- A press release from the European Commission noted that it suspected the companies of agreeing to limit the development and roll-out of two types of emissions-regulating technology.
- Auto manufacturers have an incentive to skimp on emissions reduction systems because they generally add weight and cost to the car, which affects two things consumers look for most: performance and price.
- Last year, German magazine Spiegel reported on allegations that VW Group, Daimler, and BMW had been meeting since the 1990s "to coordinate activities related to vehicle technology, costs, suppliers and strategy as well as diesel emissions controls," Bloomberg wrote.
Mark Zuckerberg's money manager invested $100 million in a hot startup — and it shows how Microsoft's $7.5 billion GitHub acquisition is sending shockwaves through Silicon Valley
- When Microsoft announced its intention to buy GitHub for $7.5 billion earlier this year, it started something of a gold rush in Silicon Valley, as investors looked to get in on the booming market for software developer-focused startups.
- The latest evidence: GitLab, one of GitHub's chief competitors and a hot startup in its own right, announced on Wednesday a mega-round of funding to the tune of $100 million, giving it a valuation of $1.1 billion.
- GitLab CEO Sid Sijbrandij recently told Business Insider that over 100,000 code repositories were moved to his platform from GitHub following the news of the Microsoft acquisition.
- With the GitHub acquisition, Microsoft attracted a lot of attention to the space, with companies like PagerDuty, Puppet Labs, CloudBees, and now GitLab taking in sizable rounds of funding in the aftermath.
Alibaba's Jack Ma backs down from promise to Trump to bring 1 million jobs to the U.S.
- Jack Ma, founder and chairman of Chinese retail giant Alibaba, says the company no longer plans to create 1 million jobs in the United States in the wake of the ongoing trade conflict between the U.S. and China.
- Ma's comments come on the heels of a new round of tariffs this week from both China and the U.S. that will affect billions of dollars worth of goods as the two countries have failed to reach a deal to resolve the Trump administration's concerns about China's trade practices.
- At an Alibaba investor conference on Tuesday, Ma also called the trade frictions a "mess" that could have decadeslong ramifications.
- Experts have said that Ma's promise to enable 1 million American small businesses and farmers to sell their goods on the Alibaba platform over the next five years was lofty to begin with.