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From: Paul H. Christiansen5/2/2019 6:32:08 AM
   of 964
 
2019-5-1 - Apple Q2 Earnings Insights

There were a few key insights that came from Apple’s Q2 earnings. One thing I’ve noticed through the years, and a reason I spend more time writing about Apple’s earnings than any other company, is that in many aspects trends within Apple’s ecosystem and their users, give us insight into other companies challenges and opportunities. In some regards, Apple is a bellwether for consumer market behavior.

iPhone Sales Stabilizing
In general, the smartphone market seems to be stabilizing. There are likely going to be times where Apple’s sales outgrow the smartphone industry, but in general, it seems the worldwide market is stabilizing, and we are getting a handle on what to expect in terms of annual volumes.

I wrote about this extensively after the holiday quarter where it was clear iPhone sales had peaked. It was inevitable and many lessons we learned tracking the PC category once it peaked applied to both Apple and the smartphone market. The biggest question on hardware makers minds when the PC peaked and began to decline was how low the bottom would be in annual sales. That was the question as companies planned roadmaps for hardware, and retailers made plans to carry inventory. For several years the market faced decline then stabilized. The smartphone market appears to be stabilizing a bit more quickly, and that is likely to the shorter life cycle (3-4 years) for smartphones vs. PCs (5-6 years).

Read More $ Think.tank

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From: Paul H. Christiansen5/8/2019 12:06:41 PM
   of 964
 
Lyft users will be able to hail driverless Waymo cars in Phoenix

Alphabet self-driving subsidiary Waymo today pulled back the curtains on its ongoing partnership with Lyft, which the two firms announced in 2017. In the coming months, Waymo plans to deploy 10 of its driverless vehicles (with safety drivers behind the wheel) on Lyft’s ride-hailing platform in the Metro Phoenix area, the site of its commercial Waymo One taxi service. Lyft users within range of those vehicles’ routes will have the option to select one for eligible rides.

As TechCrunch points out, it’s much like Lyft’s collaboration with self-driving car startup Aptiv, which makes a small fleet of autonomous vehicles available to Lyft customers in Las Vegas. As of April 2019, they’ve given more than 40,000 rides.

This first step in our partnership will allow us to introduce the Waymo Driver to Lyft users, enabling them to take what for many will be their first ride in a self-driving vehicle,” Waymo CEO John Krafcik wrote in a blog post. “We’re committed to continuously improving our customer experience, and our partnership with Lyft will also give our teams the opportunity to collect valuable feedback.”

It’s been six months since Waymo launched Waymo One, and in that time, Waymo says it’s grown to serve over 1,000 riders.

Read More – Venture Beat

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From: Paul H. Christiansen5/11/2019 9:54:33 AM
   of 964
 
Lyft Off to Solid Start With a Long Road Ahead

As we expressed in a note before Lyft went public, we see ridesharing as an industry in transition from the hardly compelling business of a high-tech taxi network to the potentially massive opportunity of consumer transportation-as-a-service. We believe this transition, especially with respect to autonomy, will both take longer and be more impactful than people think. We expect the balance of 2019 to involve heavy investment and the stock to be unpredictable in the short-term. Long-term, we think Lyft will be successful in capitalizing on an industry-wide shift from car ownership to service-based transportation.

Read More - Loup $ Ventures

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From: Paul H. Christiansen5/16/2019 8:28:48 AM
   of 964
 
Google’s Translatotron converts one spoken language to another, no text involved

Every day we creep a little closer to Douglas Adams’ famous and prescient Babel fish. A new research project from Google takes spoken sentences in one language and outputs spoken words in another — but unlike most translation techniques, it uses no intermediate text, working solely with the audio. This makes it quick, but more importantly lets it more easily reflect the cadence and tone of the speaker’s voice.

Translatotron, as the project is called, is the culmination of several years of related work, though it’s still very much an experiment. Google’s researchers, and others, have been looking into the possibility of direct speech-to-speech translation for years, but only recently have those efforts borne fruit worth harvesting.

Translating speech is usually done by breaking down the problem into smaller sequential ones: turning the source speech into text (speech-to-text, or STT), turning text in one language into text in another (machine translation), and then turning the resulting text back into speech (text-to-speech, or TTS). This works quite well, really, but it isn’t perfect; each step has types of errors it is prone to, and these can compound one another.

Read More – Tech Crunch

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From: Paul H. Christiansen5/16/2019 8:47:03 AM
   of 964
 
These flexible solar cells bring us closer to kicking the fossil-fuel habit

No solar material has managed to supplant silicon. Perovskites, which are far cheaper and can be made into flexible modules, could change that. Last December, researchers in a lab in Oxford, England, shined a sun lamp onto a tiny solar cell, only about one-centimeter square.

The device was actually two cells, stacked one atop the other. The bottom one was made of the type of silicon used in standard solar panels. But the top was perovskite, a material with a crystal structure that’s particularly adept at turning light into electricity.

A pair of probes attached to the so-called tandem solar cell measured its performance. Other researchers in the lab at Oxford PV, a company spun out of the university last year, gathered behind a flat-screen monitor, waiting expectantly for a calculation of the cell’s efficiency to appear. When it did, they exchanged high fives. The cell had converted 28% of the energy in the light into electricity, a new efficiency record for a perovskite-on-silicon device. An independent test confirmed it a few days later, after the tiny cell was put on a plane to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado.

While silicon panels might dominate the market—with around 95% market share—silicon is not an especially good solar material. It mainly uses light from the red and infrared end of the solar spectrum, and it has to be fairly thick and bulky to absorb and convert photons. The most efficient silicon solar panels on the market achieve less than 23% efficiency, while the theoretical maximum for a single layer of silicon is around 29%.

Read More $ MIT Technology Review

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From: Paul H. Christiansen5/28/2019 11:43:24 AM
   of 964
 
Some time ago I posted an article about Polarity TE (PTE), an emerging bio-tech company that has developed a proprietary method to regenerate certain human tissues.

The following article provides an excellent analysis of the potential for PTE. Let me know if you have a problem opening the following.Seeking Alpha article:

PolarityTE - All or Nothing

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From: Paul H. Christiansen6/13/2019 9:42:31 AM
   of 964
 
Bill Gates just backed a chip startup that uses light to turbocharge AI

Advances in computing, from speedier processors to cheaper data storage, helped ignite the new AI era. Now demand for even faster, more energy-efficient AI models is driving a wave of innovation in semiconductors.

Luminous Computing, which recently raised $9 million of seed funding from prominent investors including Bill Gates and Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, has an ambitious plan to accelerate AI with a new chip. While conventional semiconductors use electrons to help carry out the demanding mathematical calculations that power AI models, Luminous is using light instead.

Many industries are trying to pack an increasing amount of AI into their machines, including makers of autonomous cars and drones. But widely used electrical chips like central processing units aren’t ideal for those tasks because they use a lot of power and may not be able to process data fast enough.

These limitations can cause lags and delays—annoying if you’re waiting for some machine-learning results for a research paper, but far more serious if you’re relying on an AI algorithm to guide a car down a busy street.

Read More $ MIT Technology Review

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From: Paul H. Christiansen8/25/2019 10:20:55 AM
1 Recommendation   of 964
 
This posting represents my “farewell” to this segment of Silicon Investor.

I’ve spent most of my life searching for a systematic, repeatable process for discovering growth stocks. Among others, that search included following the “big bet” investments being made by institutional investors and my own unusual price/volume metrics.

The problem with all those searches was not that they failed to uncover winners – they did that. However, they also discovered losers – almost equally.

In mid-2018 I finally came upon a metric that thus far has produced dramatic performance . . .revenue growth. Here are the results of blending that metric with my unusual price/volume metrics, as of August 23, 2018:

UVM Picks Composite: +69.1%

S&P 500: +5.3%

Nasdaq Composite: +4.0%

If you have an interest in following future performance, visit my web site at the following URL.

uvmetrics.com

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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/4/2020 11:30:30 AM
1 Recommendation   of 964
 
U.S. Pushing Effort to Develop 5G Alternative to Huawei

Seeking to blunt the dominance by China’s Huawei Technologies Co., the White House is working with U.S. technology companies to create advanced software for next-generation 5G telecommunications networks.

The plan would build on efforts by some U.S. telecom and technology companies to agree on common engineering standards that would allow 5G software developers to run code atop machines that come from nearly any hardware manufacturer. That would reduce, if not eliminate, reliance on Huawei equipment.

Companies including Microsoft Corp., Dell Inc. and AT&T Inc. are part of the effort, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said.

Read More $ WSJ

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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/4/2020 11:35:17 AM
1 Recommendation   of 964
 
U.S. Pushing Effort to Develop 5G Alternative to Huawei

Seeking to blunt the dominance by China’s Huawei Technologies Co., the White House is working with U.S. technology companies to create advanced software for next-generation 5G telecommunications networks.

The plan would build on efforts by some U.S. telecom and technology companies to agree on common engineering standards that would allow 5G software developers to run code atop machines that come from nearly any hardware manufacturer. That would reduce, if not eliminate, reliance on Huawei equipment.

Companies including Microsoft Corp., Dell Inc. and AT&T Inc. are part of the effort, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said.

Read More $ WSJ

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