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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/19/2020 10:22:47 AM
   of 993
 
Carbon Capture Wins Fans Among Oil Giants

Can new technology suck carbon dioxide, a prevalent greenhouse gas, out of the air—economically? More companies are betting that it can, as governments adopt ambitious carbon-emissions targets and investors grow increasingly concerned about the risks of climate change.

Carbon-capture techniques have existed for decades. But it’s incredibly expensive—not to mention energy intensive—to remove the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere on a large enough scale to make a significant dent.

Now, Exxon Mobil Corp., Microsoft Corp. and others are focused on reducing the cost and the amount of energy required to capture carbon dioxide. Some companies are using giant fans to suck up air, then separating the carbon dioxide chemically. One venture plans to fill land in Arizona with dozens of accordionlike machines designed to expand as they absorb the gas.

Read More $WSJ

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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/19/2020 2:55:19 PM
1 Recommendation   of 993
 
What I Learned From My Mother-in-Law’s Cable Bill—and Trying YouTube TV

It may be hard to believe, but Comcast still charges its cable TV subscribers a $9.95 monthly fee for high-definition TV—the 20-year-old technology that is standard in video-streaming services (and in TV sets). It’s one of a number of fees—also including a $12.60 fee for the right to watch free broadcast networks like CBS and ABC as well as an $8.75 fee for sports channels—that I discovered on my mother-in-law’s cable bill on a recent visit.

It reminded me of why the number of people cutting the cable cord is steadily growing—and it also made me wonder why more people aren’t trying streaming services like YouTube TV, Sling TV or Hulu Plus Live TV, which offer cheaper versions of classic cable delivered over the internet. I tried YouTube TV the weekend of the Oscars—it was stunningly easy to set up and a joy to use (and easy to cancel).

Read More - $ The Information

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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/21/2020 11:52:21 AM
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Cord-Cutting Accelerated in 2019, Raising Pressure on Cable Providers

The pace at which people are abandoning traditional pay-TV packages accelerated by more than 70% last year, as prices continued to rise and consumers gravitated to more affordable streaming options.

Large cable and satellite companies lost about 5.5 million traditional pay-TV customers last year, a roughly 8% decline, according to public filings. The numbers—which exclude smaller providers that have yet to report results for the entirety of 2019—are much larger than the loss of 3.2 million subscribers in 2018.

Traditional pay-TV customers are expensive for cable companies to keep, between installation and equipment costs and the ever-rising price of programming, which has led cable and satellite providers to raise their rates. Analysts predict more American households will cut the cord this year.

Read More - $ WSJ

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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/26/2020 2:53:21 PM
   of 993
 
Inside ‘Amazon Go Grocery’: Tech giant opens first full-sized store without cashiers or checkout lines

Two years after launching a chain of convenience stores without cashiers or checkout lines, Amazon is opening its first “Amazon Go Grocery” store in Seattle on Tuesday morning, enlarging the footprint for surveillance-style shopping and signaling a larger challenge to the broader world of brick-and-mortar retail.

GeekWire got a sneak peek at the store during a recent media preview, entering by scanning a smartphone app and strolling the aisles of the completely stocked store. The banks of cameras and sensors overhead track everything put into a shopping cart, with the help of artificial intelligence — rendering unnecessary the old-fashioned ritual of scanning and paying at a checkout stand. Items are charged to a shopper’s Amazon account shortly after they walk through the exit.

Read More - GeekWire

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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/26/2020 2:56:59 PM
   of 993
 
Seattle-area tech workers earn $279K/year on average in total compensation, according to new BLS data

Tech workers in the Seattle region were making an average annualized salary of $279,084 in the third quarter of 2019. That’s more than double the average wage of any other sector in the area, according to the latest figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

It’s worth noting that the report does not include median salaries, a metric that would better reflect what most tech workers earn. High-paid executives have an outsized impact on the average.

Read More - GeekWire

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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/26/2020 4:08:02 PM
   of 993
 
Buyer Beware: Why Retailers Should Think Hard About Amazon ‘Go’ Partnerships

Amazon is angling to become a toll collector on physical retail just as it is in e-commerce, with its vast marketplace that outside merchants access for a fee. But brick-and-mortar retailers may want to approach Amazon’s latest idea with caution.

As Amazon on Tuesday unveiled in Seattle its biggest Amazon Go outlet—grocery stores equipped with technology that eliminates the need for cashiers—The Information confirmed a Wall Street Journal report that the e-commerce giant was considering licensing the Go technology to other retailers. That could extend its tentacles throughout the brick-and-mortar landscape. Such a move could elevate the Go technology from its current experimental status into a money-making business.

Read More - $ The Information


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From: Paul H. Christiansen2/28/2020 11:40:36 AM
1 Recommendation   of 993
 
How to Battle an Epidemic? Digitize Its DNA and Share It With the World

A nightmarish scene was burnt into my memory nearly two decades ago: Changainjie, Beijing’s normally chaotic “fifth avenue,” desolate without a sign of life. Schools shut, subways empty, people terrified to leave their homes. Every night the state TV channels reported new cases and new deaths. All the while, we had to face a chilling truth: the coronavirus, SARS, was so novel that no one understood how it spread or how to effectively treat it. No vaccines were in sight. In the end, it killed nearly 1,000 people.

It’s impossible not to draw parallels between SARS and the new coronavirus outbreak, COVID-19, that’s been ravaging China and spreading globally. Yet the response to the two epidemics also starkly highlights how far biotech and global collaborations have evolved in the past two decades. Advances in genetic sequencing technologies, synthetic biology, and open science are reshaping how we deal with potential global pandemics. In a way, the two epidemics hold up a mirror to science itself, reflecting both technological progress and a shift in ethos towards collaboration.

Read More – Singularity Hub

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From: Paul H. Christiansen3/4/2020 9:50:05 AM
1 Recommendation   of 993
 
Industrial giant Honeywell says it’s built the world’s best quantum computer

Honeywell, a US company best known for its home thermostats, has announced that it has built the world’s most powerful quantum computer. While all eyes were on IBM and Google, which last year knocked heads over quantum supremacy, Honeywell has been working quietly on quantum tech that it plans to make available to clients via the internet in the next three months.

How it works: Most quantum computers, including those being developed by IBM and Google, are built around superconducting qubits, which use supercooled circuits. Honeywell’s quantum computer uses a different technology, called ion traps, which hold ions—the computer’s qubits—in place with electromagnetic fields. Superconducting quantum chips are faster, but ion traps are more accurate and hold their quantum state for longer.

Read More - $ MIT Technology Review

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From: Paul H. Christiansen3/4/2020 12:33:18 PM
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The Coming Tech Boom of the Fourth Quarter

I spent the early part of my week talking to ODM’s (An original design manufacturer (ODM) is a company that designs and manufactures a product, as specified, that is eventually rebranded by another firm for sale.), and PC makers to gauge how they see their market demands changing over this year. As you can imagine, all say that because of the closing or slowdown of manufacturing facilities due to the COVID-19 Virus during the first half of this year, it will have a ripple effect during Q1 and Q2 on sales and earnings. Both groups are pretty much writing off the first two quarters as ODM’s can’t make enough products to meet current PC demand.

All PC makers have millions of dollars of PC orders they can’t fill, and many of the new smartphones that would come out in the first half of 2019 will be supply constrained through the summer. The PC makers also have a double whammy in that Intel, starting last fall, was unable to meet their demands for specific processors. Even though many turned to AMD to help fill some demand, PC orders in Q 4 of 2019 could not be filled in many cases.

Read More - $ Think.tank

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From: Paul H. Christiansen3/7/2020 9:15:03 AM
   of 993
 
Google DeepMind’s effort on COVID-19 coronavirus rests on the shoulders of giants

There's been a quest for sixty years to understand the structure of proteins, ever since Nobel Prize winners Max Perutz and John Kendrew in the 1950s gave the world the first glimpse of what a protein looks like.

It was that pioneering work, and the decades of research that followed, that made possible the announcement on Thursday by Google's DeepMind that it has arrived at a guess as to the structure of a handful of proteins associated with the respiratory disease known as COVID-19 that is spreading around the world.

Proteins do the vast amount of the work of organisms, and understanding the three-dimensional shape of the proteins in COVID-19 could conceivably provide a kind of blueprint of the virus behind the disease, which could conceivably aid in coming up with a vaccine. Efforts are underway around the world to determine the structure of those viral proteins, of which DeepMind's is just one effort.

Read More – ZD Net

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