Innovation News June 17th, 2016
MIT researchers are using Graphene to slow down the speed of light to be slower than electrons. This enables a more intense beam of light. it is called an 'Optical Boom', analogous to the Sonic Boom of sound; a shockwave of light, moving along a 2D surface. The electrons then produce a stream of Plasmons that can be used to transmit information more efficiently than using just electrons. Finding ways to use light directly will provide many powerful tools for technology.
Starting next year, music that is available only on streaming services, will be eligible to compete in the Grammys. This was not true before. Recently, music streaming passed music downloads in size also. The world of music has changed, and it appears has found its long-term model in the form of music streaming. (Learn more at MusicStreaming.com).
By now everyone has heard that Microsoft bought Linkedin. We were surprised it was not Google; Google struggled with its own social network, unable to compete in any effective way with Facebook; Linkedin would have helped google immensely. Well done, Microsoft!
The first time this was confirmed was in September; by finding a 2nd example we now know it was not a fluke. Gravitational waves were first proposed by Einstein, and have now been confirmed by the LIGO instruments, as astronomers observed, and measured, two massive black holes colliding. LIGO is one of the most sensitive instruments ever created by mankind.
VW is slowly emerging from its scandals. One big focus area will be moving away from Diesel, by focusing on EVs. VW will have about 30 new models by 2025, and expects to sell at least 2 million per year from that point on. Only time will tell if this succeeds but VW does seem to build very good cars, and we have owned several. It continues to mystify many why they ever misled the public in the first place, but it's best of all to find a way to move forward.
In some developing countries, transporting water is hand-carried or balanced on the head/shoulders. A new kind of water container has been developed called the Hippo. It is a large cylinder, with a handle. Water fills the cylinder, and you just roll it home. Now one person can transport much more water than before, with less energy and effort. It is a significant invention that will help many, yet does not use any technology. The wheelbarrow, reimagined.
Gap is closing stores, Best Buy struggles, Sears and JC Pennys seem hopeless. Yet Amazon continues to surge. Why is that? Clearly, traditional retailers still do not understand the mobile metaphor - or what consumers look forward to. All you have to do is visit any of these stores to see why - almost nothing has changed. Traditional retailers, by and large are run by people who are highly skilled in traditional retailing - but not necessarily skilled in new technologies of the fundamental, driving metaphors that are emerging. We plan to explore this topic more, in an article on Huffington.
If you are rich and want to have your own driver, soon you can do it 'virtually' - Rolls Royce is working on a driverless car. While some might like that, it's hard to see the point - if you are rich enough to afford a Rolls, I think you would want a human driver. You can't talk to an empty drivers seat, or ask for favors like picking something up at a store. What if there is an object blocking the road - now the person being driven would have to get out and deal with it. Driverless cars have some good uses but this does not seem to be one of them.
Why would Putin, the head of Russia - favor a specific candidate? The only reason is that he is picking the weakest one, which would give Russia more advantages. Putin clearly sees Trump as the least competent candidate, as do most educated voters. it ought to be concerning that Putin would pick a specific person. Trump is exactly why the Electoral College was created!
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