Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #362

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Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see?

My friends: Alistair Croll (Solve for InterestingTilt the WindmillHBS; chair of StrataStartupfestPandemonio, and ResolveTO; Author of Lean Analytics and some other books), Hugh McGuire (PressBooks, LibriVox, iambik and co-author of Book: A Futurist’s Manifesto) and I decided that every week the three of us are going to share one link for one another (for a total of six links) that each individual feels the other person “must see”.

Check out these six links that we’re recommending to one another: 

  • The New Moats – Greylock Partners – Medium. “For decades, maybe centuries, businesses erected moats around themselves: Economies of scale, network effects, high switching costs, customer loyalty, deep IP. Today, those moats are easy to bridge. As this excellent strategy post argues, the future of advantage is a layer of intelligence between systems of engagement (the “front office”) and systems of record (the “back office”). And this layer of intelligence is where most AI will really change who’s leading entire industries.” (Alistair for Hugh).
  • The Beauty Contest That’s Shaking Wall St. – The New York Times. “By most accounts, the US stock market is healthy. But it’s also incredibly volatile at the moment. To understand why, realize that in a public market, a buyer doesn’t have to buy the best stock — they have to buy the stock everyone else will think is best. This collectivity drives cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, currently at stratospheric heights — great for buyers, but hardly a currency for someone who pays 1 Bitcoin a month in rent. Turns out this public consensus isn’t a new idea.” (Alistair for Mitch).
  • This Is What the Demise of Oil Looks Like – Bloomberg. “Traditional projections for oil consumption are bullish: we’ll keep using more oil. But a combo of increased efficiency, the move to electric vehicles, and fuel switching (from coal to oil to natural gas to biofuels) could make for a radically different future.” (Hugh for Alistair).
  • Map: These are the cities that climate change will hit first – The Washington Post. “The map is not fine-tuned enough to confirm that Montreal gets hit same time as New York (2043). But, it’s pretty clear that it does. What the map shows is estimates for ‘climate departure’, defined as the year in which ‘the average temperature of its coolest year from then on is projected to be warmer than the average temperature of its hottest year between 1960 and 2005.’ Miami looks like it might flip in 2033. Just doing some quick calculations, my kids will be in their prime, early thirties in 2043. I’ll be 69. I wonder what life will be like then for all of us?” (Hugh for Mitch). 
  • End-Times For Humanity – Aeon. “This essay sums up the entire sentiment felt at this past year’s TED conference, and something that I have been grappling with, personally, for some time. To put it into naive terms: maybe we don’t want to know as much as we know, and be as connected as we are? Perhaps by becoming so technically powerful, we starting to fracture when it comes to realizing just how fragile we are. One friend recently said to me that he feels like life is about all of us running through a minefield, at the highest speed possible, and it’s just a question of when someone gets hit with something. Perhaps AI will teach us that ignorance is truly bliss?” (Mitch for Alistair).
  • Welcome To Digital Detox Camp – The New Yorker. “Perhaps a little escapism is needed in your information diet this week? Just imagine… the horror… of being left alone with your thoughts, friendly conversation and the nature of things that won’t be documented, published, shared and then analyzed by everyone (including yourself). Cue anxiety…” (Mitch for Hugh).

Feel free to share these links and add your picks on Twitter, Facebook, in the comments below or wherever you play.