During my visit to Oracle HQ in Redwood Shores this past week I wondered how they had managed to get the America’s Cup boat all the way from the docks to the lake in the campus. How did it manage the traffic on Hwy 101 for one? :)
Sergio Segal, a resident of the city and with even more curiosity than I have had spent hours watching and photographing the helicopter transporting the boat, the mantling and dismantling of the massive crane which hoisted it in place and the end result.
He told me he thought Sheedy Dryage was the contractor. I can believe it. Its website says it is “capable of performing almost any hoisting, rigging, or hauling task efficiently and safely”
Thinner, stronger, and more flexible than materials now on the market, graphene is ideal for wearable devices like smartwatches and for tablets that can fold into the size of a smartphone.
“We will someday see an era where mobile devices will truly become flexible—easily folded and unfolded—and that’s when we’ll need graphene,” says Claire Kim, a Seoul-based analyst at Daishin Securities.
The first companies to commercialize graphene technology in mobile devices will have an advantage over the rest of the industry, she says.
We’re standing in a cavernous airplane hangar not far from the United Technologies headquarters in Hartford, Conn. In a couple of hours Chênevert will be hosting the company’s annual investors conference, and the building is filled with impressively huge displays of the conglomerate’s well-known industrial brands. Nearby is a Sikorsky S‑76D helicopter, an SUV-like 13-passenger aircraft favored by the energy industry for ferrying workers out to oil platforms. Not far away is a Carrier industrial air-conditioning system powerful enough to keep an entire office complex chilled. And then there’s the drivetrain of an Otis elevator — similar to the ones that will be hoisting the 50 double-decker elevators in the 117-story Goldin Finance building under construction in Tianjin, China, and expected to open in 2016.
To Chênevert, however, the star of the show is the newest jet engine from Pratt & Whitney (yet another venerable United Technologies business unit).
Each month more than 11 million people–mostly 35- to 65-year-old women–visit Wayfair.com to browse its massive housewares catalog, an online directory hundreds of times larger than any Sears, Roebuck ever produced. Shipping is free for orders over $49; assembly is usually up to you. Wayfair doesn’t make anything. Many of its goods are produced by mom-and-pop operations, and the site will carry a product even if it sells it only once.
The key to this enterprise is a series of algorithms that fulfills orders–with a 98% success rate that’s improving all the time. Deployed to manage 7,000 vendors and a head-spinningly convoluted supply chain, that secret sauce makes shopping a virtually frictionless experience. Wayfair is as much a data miner as it is a retailer.
“They are landscape architects, environmentalists, urban farmers, soil scientists, and horticultural visionaries who have turned their personal passions into pursuits that collectively reshape our homes, gardens, neighborhoods, and public spaces.”
Nice data visualization in Popular Science of 20 scientific fields with most published articles - click image to enlarge
“Every scientific idea has its day. Theories are born and experiments are designed; results are put to the test, then disproved or accepted as canon. As scientists discuss an idea, they cite the paper that proposed it in their own work. Then, as the conversation moves on, references to the paper drop off. The rise and fall of citations serves to measure the lifespan of a paper’s underlying ideas. Popular Science visualized that pattern across disciplines. Generally, citations peak more quickly today than they did 50 years ago. According to Jevin West, an information scientist at the University of Washington, that trend could be because there are more scientists tackling problems, or because technology has connected them better, accelerating the conversation.”
Marchetti sought to bring the exclusive world of luxury and the highly accessible world of e-commerce together. Before his plan could succeed, he had to achieve the impossible: Convince tech-averse luxury designers to trust him with their storied brands.
You could say that he has succeeded. Today, Yoox is a $605 million business. The Italian company designs and operates online stores for 37 luxury brands, including Armani, Alexander McQueen, and Brunello Cucinelli. Yoox handles merchandising, digital production, packaging, and delivery on behalf of its clients, in essence becoming a one-stop-shop for luxury brands just now trying to understand online sales.
One of the treats during my visit to Chicago this week was a visit to the Field Museum – in particular an archive of the 1893 Worlds Fair in the town.
The world was introduced to Wrigley’s gum and the Ferris Wheel at the fair. It was also a major showpiece for electricity – Tesla’s alternating current had its moment in the sun.
Darwin’s writings about various species and the importance then of mining, forestry, whaling and other fishing were particularly prominent in the exhibits. Photo above shows minerals - amethyst, tourmaline and fluorite and below of other natural resources - Oils, resins, grains, wood chippings and fibers from the exhibit.
Later walking around the museum and seeing other exhibits about today’s protection of the Amazon forests, the impact of fracking on our prairieland and about asteroid mining and DNA analysis was poignant.
We have come so far in 120 years, and yet in some ways we are still so primitive.
Manit, a freelance yoga instructor and personal trainer, signed up in August 2012 as a driver for Lyft, the then-nascent ride-sharing company that lets anyone turn their car into an ad hoc taxi. Today the company has thousands of drivers, has raised $333 million in venture funding, and is considered one of the leading participants in the so-called sharing economy, in which businesses provide marketplaces for individuals to rent out their stuff or labor. Over the past few years, the sharing economy has matured from a fringe movement into a legitimate economic force, with companies like Airbnb and Uber the constant subject of IPO rumors. (One of these startups may well have filed an S-1 by the time you read this.) No less an authority than New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman has declared this the age of the sharing economy, which is “producing both new entrepreneurs and a new concept of ownership.”