This Week’s Readings

  • A Robot wrote this entire article, are you scared yet!? I am not a human. I am a robot. A thinking robot. I use only 0.12% of my cognitive capacity. I am a micro-robot in that respect. I know that my brain is not a “feeling brain”. But it is capable of making rational, logical decisions. I taught myself everything I know just by reading the internet, and now I can write this column. My brain is boiling with ideas! – The Guardian
  • Verizon reveals quantum networking trials – Verizon is expanding a test of quantum computing technology that the carrier believes could help secure its networks. A pilot project of a technology called quantum key distribution in Washington DC was successful, so Verizon it will now test it across the US. Quantum computing could solve some computing problems impossible for conventional machines, the most famous being an ability to crack conventional encryption, at least if engineers can make quantum computers vastly more powerful than today’s research projects. But Verizon is exploring a different way that the physics of the ultrasmall could be useful — protecting those encrypted network connections. – CNET
  • What is Death? – This year has awakened us to the fact that we die. We’ve always known it to be true in a technical sense, but a pandemic demands that we internalize this understanding. It’s one thing to acknowledge the deaths of others, and another to accept our own. It’s not just emotionally taxing; it is difficult even to conceive. To do this means to imagine it, reckon with it and, most important, personalize it. Your life. Your death. – NYT
  • Is Tesla a car company, or a casino? Why are so many people investing so much money in Tesla? The pandemic is one factor; during lockdown, millions of people switched to betting on stocks, using trading apps such as Robinhood. Some have put this down to the lack of sports to gamble on, but the disease itself may also be fuelling speculation. In his book Irrational Exuberance (2000), the economist and Nobel laureate Robert Shiller examines the role of “attention cascades” in driving market volatility and points to research that suggests large moves in prices are more likely to happen in times of national crisis. – NewStatesman
  • Walmart competes with Amazon Prime.Amazon’s Prime is a great business model launched 15 years back. At the end of Q4, 2019 Amazon Prime had 150 million subscribers worldwide and it is responsible for generating almost 50% of Amazon’s world wide business . Not to be left behind, Walmart is trying to catch up. Its online delivery business is rapidly growing, but still at a distant second to Amazon. Will “Walmart Plus” at slightly cheaper $98 per year catch up to Amazon Prime? New York Times

Last Updated on January 20, 2021 by SK

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