Amazon's Ambitious Bets Pile Up, and Its Losses Swell
Amazon is all about market share and building infrastructure to support that market share. So actually the main driver of amazon isn't it's store front/web presence. They sell stuff online, so do thousands of other people out of there garages. What they are driving for in the warehouse/delivery infrastructure to deliver anything, anywhere fast and at the lowest cost. By doing that they can simply offer the same things, faster and cheaper than anyone else.
But that involves building warehouses in strategic locations, and forming deals with delivery companies that lower costs and streamline the process the whole way. At the moment, this extends to delivering to local delivery company and post office depots directly and relying on those delivery services for the last mile delivery.
They have taken that same physical strategic warehouse, tied closely to key last mile delivery infrastructure model into cloud computing. Which is essentially large warehouse of servers, strategically placed for maximum efficiency of running costs and internet connectivity to large markets.
What it means is that they spend all their money that they actually make on razor thing margins, building more infrastructure, to service more customers that they have gotten by out competing everyone on price and delivery speed. All Amazon has to do to turn a profit is to pull back a bit on the growth plans.
The latest foray is into grocerys in some large west coast markets. This is traditionally a direct from store/warehouse last mile delivery service, and offered by a large number of supermarkets etc theses days. What Amazon hope to do isn't to make a lot of money on it, but develop and support a last mile delivery service. Thus completing the vertical integration within amazon of the whole order, pick, pack, ship and delivery process.
Russia Prepares For Internet War Over Malaysian Jet
There were a number UK, canadian and Australians killed. Which would mean those countries will get all relevant signals intelligence from the US at least under the United Kingdom – United States of America Agreement. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UKUSA_Agreement.
Also when have the CIA ever kept there nose out of anything? :)
AT&T To Use Phone Geolocation To Prevent Credit Card Fraud
"So what about those of us who refuse a smartphone for various reasons? I wouldn't mind having one but I'm not going to shell out another $20/month for internet on a device that I mainly use in a place where I already pay for the internet."
Simple, you will have access to only higher rate credit cards. The higher rate justified by the higher risk of fraud.
The Coming IT Nightmare of Unpatchable Systems
The replacement date for cell phones is upfront and written into most contracts. It is a fundamental part of cell-phone contract marketing these days. So nobody is thinking 20 years unless they are deluded, and the phone companies are definitely not promoting that at all. The 2 year upgrade cycle is transparent, and well understood between customers and vendors. So what is your point?
UK May Kill the EU's Net Neutrality Law
The UK conservative government has an election next year. They are under a lot of pressure from the UKIP, a party that is for the UK being independent from the EU, so very anti EU. And it is about an issue that they can twist into being about them protecting children from the internet, which plays well in the tabloids. Of course they were going to do this no matter how good or bad the EU legislation actually is.
The Myth of the Science and Engineering Shortage
The article mentions this, and solves your problem. Move out of Silicon Valley to a lower cost of living place. Some good sized mid-western city will be optimal. This only works if you have an established product and good procedures. Now if your start-up and need funding from VC etc then yes base yourself in SF, NYC, Boston or Chicago....
What If the Next Presidential Limo Was a Tesla?
The Presidents limo is in a heavily disguised armour. It weighs multiple tonnes.
An electric design just can't make the range or extended get away speed required with the protection needed.
Of course the one true maker of presidential limousines is ford....
CIA Accused: Sen. Feinstein Sees Torture Probe Meddling
Iran Contra is a good example of what is the problem with the CIA. They believe they are a covert military force and diplomatic wing of government, and NOT an intelligence gathering service. Because of this, after Iran Contra, they just pulled out of everything including the basics of intelligence gathering that would generate actionable intelligence.
The vietnam war murky start was due to it growing out of CIA lead military actions. In many ways a more up front decision decision in government about if there should be any military action in Vietnam could have saved many lives, with either a fully committed profession US force being deployed earlier on or simply not engaging in the conflict at all and coming out at the same result it ended in anyway.
If the CIA concentrated on understanding what is going on in the world and feeding that back to the government. With military actions left to the military, and diplomatic manoeuvring left to the diplomatic corp, the US just wouldn't get into half the messes it does.
The Ever So Unlikely Tale of How ARM Came To Rule the World
The article skipped over the whole development of the arm processor. It wasn't developed for the newton, the original architecture was for the acorn archimedes risc based computers, launched in 1987.
The key difference that set Acorn apart from every desktop PC type computer manufacturer at the time, is they went down the road of actually designing their own processors for the PC market. This is instead of using one from Motorola or IBM
I think what set the ARM apart going forward was they used modern for the time CPU design principles, but they aimed for a lower end consumer grade market instead of the higher end mainframe/server/workstation/supercomputer market. Because of this they were all about getting the most performance from cheaper slightly older chip fab technologies. All of these ultimately meant that the design constraints imposed early on translated well to mobile applications.
Assange's Lawyers: Follow Swedish Law, Interrogate Him In the UK
Assange's resistance to extradition to Sweden is I think because he believes he is more vulnerable to extradition lock away in a Swedish Jail, not because the extradition process is easier from there to the US than the UK, just that he won't be able to skip bail and the country locked away in a jail. EAW extradition proceedings from the UK to Sweden were in motion, he was out on bail when he skipped off into the Ecudorian embassy. If he had been charged in Sweden for rape, combined with the obvious flight risk someone like Assange represents, bail would have been very very high or not available. Assange's thinking is it would be at that point that the US would start extradition proceedings.
An interesting point here is it is implicit that Assange will not stand and fight any extradition proceedings if he can skip the country. It is a strategy that has left him imprisoned in an embassy in London. Also it has effectively accomplished what the authorities of many countries wanted to achieve, he is trapped, with a progressively smaller political voice.
Startup Out of MIT Promises Digital Afterlife — Just Hand Over Your Data
Charlie Brooker's excellent series "Black mirror". Had exactly this idea in the episode "Be right back".
A company that would take all the tweets, facebook etc as input and create a bot of the deceased personality that you would be able to text with. The story had a pregnant recent widow start talking to her "deceased" husband. To extend it to the logical conclusion the company had upgrades that went from texting, through to phone conversation if audio input was put in, to finally an android based on the person that was fully functional.
The theme was that this was a really bad idea. The imitation can only ever be a imitation, with massive parts of the more private hidden personality missing. And for the people that care the most about the person, something deep in the uncanny valley. All it could really do was draw out the grief process with false hope, and that can't be a healthy thing.
90 Percent of Businesses Say IP Is "Not Important"
Lots of business are just in the business of selling stuff. So there is very little IP to be had.
Similarly there is very little IP to be protected in the vast majority of services businesses. That's everything from dog walkers to hotel chains, law firms and banks.
The building industry has very little IP as well apart on certain widgets used.
That pretty much leaves high tech manufacturing, software, and something that is probably best describes as "media".
Facebook Patents Inferring Income of Users
The reason Facebook has any advertising income, and therefore value as a company, is that it has the ability to provide very directed advertising.
If you want to target people who read cnn.com and nytimes.com, why not just advertise there like you always could.
Tesla Would Be Proud: Wireless Charging For Electric Cars Gets Closer To Reality
The static application of this, automatic charging while parked over a mat in a garage is not that interesting really. But what if sections of a similar technology was installed in interstates that could charge a car on the move? Cars with a receiving system, and a way to verify and bill the driver for the electricity while moving. We would then have electric cars with potentially infinite range.
That application we could take a bit of inefficiency for the convenience added.
Ask Slashdot: How Do I Convince Management To Hire More IT Staff?
I'll be honest, you seem to have a large IT department. You have 4 programmers, and that seems out of whack. Now you are a manufacturer are these programmers actually working on internal business systems (so truly IT), or are they actually involved in developing end user software firmware etc (product development).
If it product development they need to be moved into the development department with the engineers, though the IT manager would then come underneath the product development manager which maybe politically problematic but needs to be done.
If it is just for internal systems development and support, frankly your doing too much customization of your internal system. I think you'll find that the payback with a company the size your described , for automating and streamlining every process, by heavy modifications to the ERP are actually not there. Get the IT manager to fight against further scope creep of the ERP, sack a programmer or 2 and get in more true IT support staff.
Chicago Transit System Fooled By Federal ID Cards
Their is no advantage over a paper ticket with oyster for a weekly pass monthly etc. You still have to buy one at a window, shop etc. The real advantage is in the casual commuter. People making the odd tube or bus trip out of their normal zone or tourists. It massively speeds up boarding of buses with a lot less fumbling around for change.
You can easily share your oyster card with another person. The pay as you go is simply handing it over to them (I have several oysters for the visitors). For weekly passes, it doesn't matter if it is paper or card. In the UK they are tied to a railcard number with a photo. You strictly need both, but they they only check the ticket or oyster usually.
Also you can buy and use a pay as you go oyster anonymously.
Chicago Transit System Fooled By Federal ID Cards
The reason that everybody is trying to move to this type of things is the success of the London oyster card system. Not perfect, but good enough, and is widely adopted.
The key with the London system was the transit fare system was very well integrated to start with. If you bought a zone 1-4 weekly pass, you could take buses tube and trains everywhere within zone 1-4.
The trick to getting adoption was the cash "penalty" fare. For instance a cash bus fare is nearly twice the price of an oyster card fare. And if you buy a season ticket it gets loaded onto an oyster card. So anybody in London needs an oyster card, and so has one.
The other effective thing that was done was to only have oyster top up and ticket sales at stations and offered exclusively to local independent corner stores. The advantage to the store holder is 2 fold, it gave a small financial return to the store owner, but more importantly for the store owner it got people in the store. Topping up oyster cards and at the same time getting a drink or chocolate bar etc. So very quickly every store had one, and in London there are a lot of them so it was widely accessible with very little staffing costs.
Lead Contractor On Health-Care Web Site Led By Execs From Troubled IT Company
The "experience" looked for in a company looking to win a government contract like this is, well a track record in winning government contracts.
They know the tricks and hoops to go through to get to the end and win the contract. They probably also have good contacts that help them win it in the first place.
Ability to actually manage the contract and deliver the result. Pretty much irrelevant.
Basically good bullsh*tters, bad managers.
Woman Facing $3,500 Fine For Posting Online Review
From a PR puff piece a year or so ago. http://www.prweb.com/releases/2012/4/prweb9444835.htm
So the President of the company is "Lee Gersten".
The pr guy on the puff piece is Rob Key firstname.lastname@example.org .
ATF Tests Show 3D Printed Guns Can Explode
A properly manufactured weapon will fire thousands of rounds, with basic cleaning and maintenance. These printed guns can't make 10. They are not weapons, they are a political statement arguing that controlling the sale of guns is impossible because anybody can make one. It's not true, and the argument is literally blowing up in their face.