The End of Not Knowing

The End of Not Knowing:

Without even really thinking about it, I slid open my iPhone that was mounted on the dashboard playing music. I fired up the TomTom app, picked my destination. In a couple of seconds, the phone beeped to show that the obstruction was 1.1 miles from my current position and that the delay to my journey would be approximately four minutes.

It’s not that GPS navigation systems with live traffic data are particularly new; it was just the contrast between my experience and the frustrated, anxious driver in the next lane that made me think about this. It felt like I had a sixth sense: data.

[I know that feeling and I agree. Also, the phones have quickly gotten better at this stuff than the gear installed in your car. The auto designers ought to be building iPad holders and such into the dashboard, and connectivity for GPS/Cell antennas etc. There’d be a far greater return for the car owner, and you could still charge a hefty amount for it…]

Source: Fraser Speirs

Apple and the EPEAT, sitting in a tree…

Apple and the EPEAT, sitting in a tree… – The Next Web:

Let me shake my translation ball one last time. “Whatever standards we’re going to use to test the Retina MacBook Pro will be updated to take into account Apple’s fancy new manufacturing techniques.”

There are, Frisbee is careful to point out, rare cases where a product is added to the registry, fails to meet standards, and is forced to be removed. Can you see that happening to Apple?

[I’m not sure if I smell a rat here or not. If the standard doesn’t keep up, then what’s the point. But if the standard moves to accommodate then what good is *that*. Most likely a rat says my more cynical self.]

Amazon same-day delivery: How the e-commerce giant will destroy local retail.

Amazon same-day delivery: How the e-commerce giant will destroy local retail.:

Why would Amazon give up its precious tax advantage? This week, as part of an excellent investigative series on the firm, the Financial Times’ Barney Jopson reports that Amazon’s tax capitulation is part of a major shift in the company’s operations. Amazon’s grand strategy has been to set up distribution centers in faraway, low-cost states and then ship stuff to people in more populous, high-cost states. When I order stuff from Amazon, for instance, it gets shipped to California from one of the company’s massive warehouses in Kentucky or Nevada.

But now Amazon has a new game. Now that it has agreed to collect sales taxes, the company can legally set up warehouses right inside some of the largest metropolitan areas in the nation. Why would it want to do that? Because Amazon’s new goal is to get stuff to you immediately—as soon as a few hours after you hit Buy. (Disclosure: Slate participates in Amazon Associates, an “affiliate” advertising plan that rewards websites for sending customers to the online store. This means that if you click on an Amazon link from Slate—including a link in this story—and you end up buying something, Amazon will send Slate a percentage of your final purchase price.)

[This and the credit card swipe fee changes (which will be bungled by most greedy people/businesses) are serious game changers for retail operations.]

Hövding Invisible Bicycle Helmet

Hövding Invisible Bicycle Helmet:

The process from design to device took seven years of intensive research and development, recording hundreds of hours of cycling footage and studying accident recreations with the Swedish Stunt Group and crash test dummies. Research has proven that shock absorption from an airbag is actually much greater than that of the polymer foam inside a traditional bicycle helmet. With this research data, Haupt and Alstin were able to acquire the proper government certifications needed to sell bicycle helmets

[Interesting. Wonder if this could work for the cycling style snobs?]

Lance Armstrong: Victim?

Lance Armstrong: Victim?:

But it’s not the what of this case that bothers me, it’s the how. Ends do not always justify means, and sometimes, in order to preserve higher values, you have to let guilty parties walk. In this instance, I’m less concerned about proving that Lance’s yellow jerseys are smudged than with the fact that USADA keeps mutating into what looks like a law-enforcement body, which it isn’t.

USADA, which participated in the federal investigation, isn’t part of the U.S. government and isn’t a judicial body. Newspaper stories tend to shorthand it as a “quasi-governmental” entity, but that’s not accurate. USADA is a private non-profit corporation hired to manage the anti-doping program for American athletes who hope to participate in the Olympics as well as various local, regional, national, and international competitions. And it’s gotten out of control.

[Worse yet, there’s nothing in this for anyone (outside the folks with the vendetta). It’s all ancient history from a sporting sense, and if you care about who winds up being listed as the winner of the races, there probably isn’t anyone in the top ten that I think was clean in those days. This simply seems predatory. Just when they thought Lance was gonna have to deal with the same sort of stuff Barry Bonds etc. did, there was no case. Now this smack of anger and retribution. Stop wasting everyone’s time and money. It’s over.]


Think about that for a moment. The current anti-doping superstructure started out as an effort to prevent cheating in privately run games. Now we’re talking about Interpol and international treaties and fudging American legal principles.

That’s why, if experts are correct—and Armstrong’s lawyers are setting up an attack on USADA’s methods and authority—we could be in for a big and very important battle. Even if you are a Lance hater, and it pains you to think that he doped and might get away with it, you might want to pull for him this time.

[This reeks. And it has nothing to do with Armstrong. It’s fundamentally wrong.]

World Champion Water-Bottle Fetcher

Leg-Breaking Climbs, Crashing for Shoe Covers, and World Champion Water-Bottle Fetcher:

But one of the things that marked me the most today was Mark Cavendish. At one point on the first climb I think, I saw him fading back. At first I was like, “Oh, is he getting dropped?”

Then a few minutes later I saw him coming back up with his world championship jersey just stuffed with water bottles and I was like, “How cool is that?” It is not every day that the world champion is working for the common cause. But it also scares me because if the world champion is a domestique, just how good is the team?

By the looks of Sky’s performance today, very, very, very good.

[David: “Don’t let your company culture become one where certain people are too good to do the jobs that need doing. Making shit work is everyone’s job.” Clearly the case on this team. Allez!]

Source: Hardly Serious with Jens Voigt

Thinking Clearly About Piece-Work

Thinking Clearly About Piece-Work:

Now according to classic economic theory, these changes wouldn’t just be details of style, but would increase the size of the overall pie. And, on the squishy side, they’d provide much greater scope for human freedom. Assuming I was guaranteed a decent wage either way, I’d far rather be able to stay up late working one night in exchange for blowing off work the next. Not to mention getting to work the hours I want, from the place I want, in the way I want, etc.

[I’ve nothing to add. Just a fairly explanation of the possibilities.]

Source: Aaron Swartz: The Weblog