Tag Archives: tech

Chris Christie sells out to the car dealers and hurts consumers, blocks Tesla’s direct sales model

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Why in the world can’t I go to Toyota.com, pick out a new car, customize it, do the financing if need be, and then have it delivered to me in a couple of days? It would save me time, money, and hassle.

The answer: Car dealerships.

They don’t want you or me buying directly from the company even though the cost to me and you would likely be considerably lower. Dealerships make their money on the markup and they are not interested in just closing up shop even if their entire business model is completely outdated. So the dealers have gone to the state governments in an effort to ban direct sales. Sadly for us they have been successful in some places.

Take for instance the regulations New Jersey just approved.

(From The Wall Street Journal)

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission approved a rule change Tuesday that would require auto retailers to have a franchise agreement with an auto manufacturer to be granted a license to sell cars in the state.

Tesla owns its stores, selling directly to consumers, something that dealer groups in New Jersey and other states have fought, primarily through legislation.

A Tesla executive said the move amounts to a “death penalty” to its auto retail outlets in New Jersey and could encourage regulators in other states to follow suit.

The rule, which deals with the licensing of auto dealers, would require that a person have a franchise agreement with an auto manufacturer to be granted a license.

Tesla’s vice president of business development, Diarmuid O’Connell, said during a conference call Tuesday that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s administration “abrogated” an agreement to hold off action on the proposal by the state’s Motor Vehicle Commission.

Click here for the article.

Why A Decentralized, Digital Economy Is A Magnet For Innovation

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Decentralized, open sourced economic action is the way forward. Instead of the centralized and highly hierarchical economic models of the 20th Century, the 21st Century (or at least much of the 21st Century) will be defined by organic and evolving economic activity.
Continue reading Why A Decentralized, Digital Economy Is A Magnet For Innovation

Big Tech moves to counter the NSA on the lobbying front

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The fight for policy is often fought along K Street not in the Capitol or in the White House. In Gucci Gulch the future of industries is worked out. Who gets government largess, who does not. Who gets what contract, who does not. Who gets surveilled and…

Continue reading Big Tech moves to counter the NSA on the lobbying front

Obama’s Greatest Challenge: A Jobs Policy for the Tech Age

It’s not just Obama’s challenge, it’s a challenge for the country and for the world. As more and more jobs are automated how will we as societies handle this? Will we rush to restrict commerce and development? To kill ATMs to save bank teller jobs? Let’s hope not as that would be a recipe for stagnation at best, complete economic disaster at worst.

We are going to have to be more nimble as workers. Things will be less permanent. We must accept this reality or we will fall behind our potential as a country, as a planet. Going retrograde on the job front is not the answer.

Click here for the article.

Want a Job? Learn how to work big data.

4 years ago I founded a small social media constancy. The idea was to manage the coming deluge of social media for businesses. Turned out to be a pretty good idea.

At first many businesses didn’t believe that social media was going to be as important as it has become. What seemed completely obvious to me was still not obvious to most businesses even into 2009. Then people began to wake up and the rest is history. Before I knew it I had Fortune 1000 companies emailing me. Companies which just 9 months before had no interest.

It has been a fascinating ride and one with many twists and turns.

Social media is by its nature a constantly evolving thing. This is one of 2 great challenges for businesses in today’s online world. Should a business spend time developing a Google+ presence? Many did. Not such a good idea, at this point. What about Foursquare? What happens if a company spends a million dollars on a social media engagement strategy only to have the environment turn on a dime?

The other great challenge is managing the crush of information which comes from doing social media well.

I can say from experience that this is a colossal task, and one that people have not yet figured out. So if you know how to run algos and know how to pick good trees from the forest, I suggest you look long and hard at a career in big data. It’s only going to get bigger.

Click here for more on this in the Huffington Post.

Tech Trends Which Will Define 2013 (Assuming we avoid the Mayan Apocalypse)

Of course 2012 was supposed to be the year the TV remote died, and despite my voice activated XBox interface I still keep the remote in hand in those rare moments when I get to watch a bit of television.

Next year cars are supposed to become more automated. Design will become more “natural.’ And 3D printing will go mainstream.

We’ll see. I would argue that in the last few months 3D printing has made leaps into our collective consciousness.

Now if we could print a self driving car – that would be something.

Click here for the story.

Come Correct: 100 Quotes on Innovation

Innovation is what will drive a cleaner more efficient society. It is the continued development of technology, IT, transport, and energy where the low hanging (in relative terms) “green” fruit is.

So much emphasis is placed on a complete (and quick) revolution in energy and other parts of the economy. But revolutions often come at the margins over time. It is the innovators who are the world’s productive revolutionaries. Some inspiration for you.

From The Huffington Post

1. “I want to put a ding in the universe.” – Steve Jobs

2. “Ideas won’t keep. Something must be done about them.” – Alfred North Whitehead

3. “Intuition will tell the thinking mind where to look next.” – Jonas Salk

4. “If you have always done it that way, it is probably wrong.” – Charles Kettering

5. “If you can dream it, you can do it.” – Walt Disney

6. “Security is mostly a superstition. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” – Helen Keller

7. “You can’t solve a problem on the same level that it was created. You have to rise above it to the next level.” – Albert Einstein

8. “Do not fear mistakes. There are none.” – Miles Davis

9. “The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect, but by the play instinct arising from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the object it loves.” – Carl Jung

10. “There is only one thing stronger than all the armies of the world: and that is an idea whose time has come.” – Victor Hugo

Click here for the next 90.

If you’re in it to build a successful Company, the credentials will come to you, eventually. But if you’re in it for the credentials, you should consider law school.

I stumbled across this great article in TechCrunch today. It seems that YCombinator (a tech incubator, connector to investors) is giving a prize this year to someone who comes to them without an idea. Usually in order to get rolling with these guys one needs a vision. This year they are trying something different. I think it’s a bad idea. So does the author of this article. But hey, it the investors’ money right?

Click here for the story.