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10-Year Archive

Humanizing Tech

Diary of a Madman, Page 20

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This Week’s Humanizing Tech Analysis

  1. Biologic Intelligence: It’s not artificial intelligence. We describe in a side-by-side chart how both systems work, showing the Biologic Intelligence is much closer to simply, Intelligence. Sadly, only a handful of people in the world recognize it. You’re one of the first. But where does this type of intelligence excel? When you’re overloaded with a large volume of different, complex data you’re trying to make sense of, all in real-time.
  2. Platform for Platforms: We’ve often pondered the blank piece of paper problem, which is how do you sell pen and paper before anyone has ever experienced it, and don’t understand the benefits? The reason computers became so valuable, but took so long to take off, is because it’s a platform for platforms. 10x harder, and longer, to get adoption.
  3. Hardware Hacking: Want to know what it feels like to be Tony Stark? One of our newest contributors, Alexander Long, wrote this step-by-step tutorial describing how to build a Smart Home touchscreen interface with a Raspberry Pi. Smart dude. Fun to follow along on his journey.
  4. The Base Code: One luxury brand is nearing the completion of its multi-year, fashion turnaround strategy. We predict Coach’s future M&A strategy after re-working its product design using fresh talent from other luxury brands. It’s one to watch. And remind you of our simple investment acronymn, BOSRUP.
  5. Human Intelligence: One of our other contributors, Francesco Corea, wrote an article on the differences between Artificial Intelligence and Human Intelligence, arguing the work to close that gap to general intelligence is more important than ever.
  6. The Information: The publication is starting to find its legs, getting scoops in various areas. Here’s a list of my thoughts on their stories over the last year.

Preparing for 2017

Thesis 1: Video as an App

A live video stream contains everything you’re interacting with in real-time.

  • Magic Leap: The Information (full article) took a blog post we linked to in last week’s newsletter about what’s real and what’s not in Magic Leap’s patents, then turned it into a story about how after a billion dollars in capital and many years, they’re still only in prototype mode. The new Color?
  • AR: Remember that 2Pac hologram a few years back at Coachella? The formal name is Pepper’s Ghost. I spoke to the inventor in 2013 when they were looking for a new CEO to take back control of the market. Starting to have a syncing suspicion that much of the AR tech will end up using similar concepts.
  • AI Conference: NIPS happened in a completely different time zone than you last week. Here’s a list of about 200 of their videos. Helpful to note that nothing you see in here is Biologic Intelligence.

Thesis 2: Biorobots Who Think for Themselves

Building a machine indistinguishable from a human being.

  • PROME: We trivially wrote some code last Saturday that lets self-driving cars stay in their lane. Watch the vid.
  • GeoHotz at Udacity: We watched the 30 minute presentation and found the last few minutes interesting. He believes selling self-driving software to Big Auto CEOs won’t happen in the next 5 years.
  • Apple: Where there’s smoke…their AI team is also working on “activity recognition”.

Thesis 3: Space as a Platform

When “push to PROD” means “launch a rocket into space”.

  • Materials: Is there anything Graphene can’t do?
  • Dimensionality: Helpful to understand higher order dimensions. The tesseract might help.

News Commentary

  • Apple Film: Apple Music put out their first feature length film. A documentary on the 808 (remember that Kanye album?). It’s a programmable “beat box” that let you create a loop of hand claps, high hats, and the sounds you can now make inside Garageband today. Only 12,000 units were produced in the 80s from defective semiconductors that made a dope sound and subsequently changed music forever.
  • Facebook Ownership: Lots of heat about Andreessen, Zuck, and the Facebook Board’s decision to let him sell his ownership stake but still control the company. My response? That’s like me selling you my car and even though you now “own” it, I force you to do what I want with it. Wanna go get groceries? Nope, sorry, I’d rather it sit in the garage today. This is not how a public company should behave. I’m selling my shares.
  • Food: Meal Kits are the new TV dinners. Tyson, Hershey’s, Campbell are all coming to the party fashionably late.
  • AirPods: Still “currently unavailable” with multiple reports saying it’s due to unforeseen manufacturing challenges. 3 months late. That bullwhip is a bitch. Wonder how Biologic Intelligence would perform at supply chain optimization.
  • Amazon Go: Guys, it’s Product Management 101. Write the press release before event starting to build the product. Sound compelling? Then move forward. Our friends at HEILBrice give you the real 411.

Market Data

  • Presentation: B Evans from A16Z put together a powerpoint doc this week that made the rounds in the tech community. It argues information that has been covered in Humanizing Tech ad naseum for years. If you’re caught up with us, you likely found the content a bit, “ya ya, tell me something I don’t know”. We’ve long thought about putting together the definitive deck to rule all decks that gave answers rather than questions. It wouldn’t be about “Mobile” or “Digital Transformation” or a bunch of stat graphs you can find on Wikipedia (stick a knife in my eye instead). Rather, it would include How-It-Works on things like microtubules-as-brains-inside-neurons, which you can’t find anywhere else on the internet. It would only be available to members of the Fountainhead Movement, where members realize the future can’t be predicted from a bar graph. Is this something of value to you?
  • BCG: What they call Industry 4.0 is having trouble getting off the ground.

Back To The Future

  • Film: We rewatched Ballet 422, the documentary on the young choreographer who both created a ballet and performed in another at the same time. If you’re into pure creation, look no further.
  • Watch: Peter Thiel’s lecture at Stanford from a few years back, which was a precursor to his book. Be a monopoly, be a late entrant, offer 10x the value of the current solution, and start with a small market you can dominate quickly. Political commentary aside, the dude knows how to build a business.
  • Read: We read The Mystery of the Aleph during our Actuarial Science days in college. If you’re interested in mathematics, zero, and the meaning of infinity, you’ll enjoy this evergreen throwback from 15 years ago.
  • Terminal: Make your command line look boss. Here’s the bash script we wrote back in 2012 for your pleasure.

Parting Thoughts

Humanizing Tech aims for quality, not size.

Reaching one person of extraordinary value is, for us, far better than reaching a million lukewarm people. In 2017, Humanizing Tech will skew smarter, pushing higher philosophical ideals of what it means to conduct oneself on the grand stage of business. Inquisitiveness, long-term leanings, gentlemanly behavior, and a methodical approach to reaching one’s personal pinnacle will be our yardstick of purity.

Read The Rest

19, 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 21

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Diary of a Madman, Page 20 was originally published in Humanizing Tech on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.



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