Quick Takes, March 6th

Part of a series of simple internal newsletters I did for a client, posted here early 2015 but back-dated to the original dates.

Buying fewer things, repairing them, planned obsolescence. It’s a discussion that has been going on for a while but this piece by Nick Thorpe on Aeon does a pretty thorough job of reviewing many of those trends and angles, looking at the feasibility and the thinking behind each. Worth spending some time pondering. —The love of stuff

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“Skybox’s constellation of micro-satellites is putting out the world’s first commercial, high-resolution, HD video of Earth from space.” The video shows planes taking off and landing, as recorded from private satellites. Mind blowing in its own right, imagine the quality intelligence agencies must have at their disposal. —Planes Landing in Beijing: Video from Space

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As more technology companies become household names, some still prefer to stay away from the spotlight yet manage some great accomplishments and power whole industries. ARM Holdings is such a firm and Bloomberg Businessweek shows us a bit of how it’s done. —The Unlikely Tale of How ARM Came to Rule the World

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We live in a time where execution, getting things done and going from one task to the next are considered accomplishments, great ways of working. Tony Schwartz argues that taking the time to reflect is of vital importance—that we shouldn’t just forge ahead but pause more often and inform our decisions. —More Reflection, Less Action

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Sure, some Kickstarter products never ship, sure, many have long delays and yes, corporations are jumping on board, so it’s not all indie, all the time anymore, but on March 3, 2014, Kickstarter showed it’s still a pretty incredible platform when it passed $1 billion in pledges. —Kickstarter passed $1 Billion in pledges

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“Morgan Stanley, which also is bullish on the stock, is even more ebullient. ‘We are witnessing the most disruptive intersection of manufacturing, innovation and capital experienced by the auto industry in more than a century,’ gushed analyst Adam Jonas in a note. ‘Tesla may be in position to disrupt industries well beyond the realm of traditional auto manufacturing. It’s not just cars.’” —Tesla’s most disruptive product may not be its cars

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Can we pass past experiences, fears and traumas to our children at conception? Can these factors affect their physical and psychological development? Researchers looking at epigenetics think they have some promising leads in proving it’s possible. —Epigenetics: The sins of the father

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And finally, three quick stories: The Guardian’s digital revenues hit £70 million, perhaps a promising way ahead for them. Facebook might be buying solar-powered drones that can fly for five years so the company can offer internet access in Africa. Ars Technica had a look at the technology last year (via TechCrunch’s coverage of the possible deal). Apple announced CarPlay which puts iOS on your dashboard. Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo will be the first to make it available.