Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #400

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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: 

  • Netflix vs Blockbuster – Dirty Tricks – Business Wars – NPR. “I often refer to Netflix and Blockbuster when talking about innovation: Netflix wanted the future to be here sooner, so they stuffed DVDs into envelopes, turning the postal service into a broadband network. But I had no idea how dirty the fight was until I listened to this.” (Alistair for Hugh).
  • Wearable scanners will be able to read our minds – Financial Times. “I was in Ottawa this week, speaking to government about the future of work, and the unreasonable power of algorithms. It’s not just AI, but the speed with which sensors and robotics are improving, that challenge the way we work. Case in point: MRIs are great, but expensive. What if they were a thousand times cheaper and a billion times more clear? The implications for everything from diagnostics to interrogation are stunning.” (Alistair for Mitch).
  • Chart of the day (century?): Price changes 1997 to 2017 – AEIdeas. “I don’t know that I agree with the conclusions of the writers, and I would like to see the fuller range of data and goods/asset classes (for instance, I would like to see how some other ‘ oods’ such as houses track), but. Pretty wild to see differences in cost increase profiles across different goods, with hospitals, college tuition and textbooks soaring above the rest.” (Hugh for Alistair).
  • William Baumol, whose famous economic theory explains the modern world, has died – Vox. “And… here is the economic theory that explains (some of) the differences between goods/services costs that have increased vs. declined over the past 20 years. According to the Baumol Cost Disease theory, the difference is not due to government interference (as the author of the post above suggests), but rather because: ‘rising productivity in the manufacturing sector of the economy inevitably pushes up the cost of labor-intensive services like live musical performances [and college tuituon]. Rising productivity allows factories to cut prices and raise wages at the same time. But when wages rise, music venues [and colleges] have no alternative but to raise ticket prices to cover the higher costs.'” (Hugh for Mitch).
  • Iggy And The Stooges – Rider. “Typically, the ‘rider’ is a dry and very specific document that a band (and management) sends to the promoter of a live show. The document is meant to ensure that all of the specifics that the band requires (from sound to lighting to backstage food) is done just right, so that the band can really deliver a great show. As a speaker, I have a rider too. I want to ensure that the av is set-up just right, so that I can deliver a great presentation. This is the rider for Iggy Pop and his band, The Stooges. It is also proof that you never have to be boring. In fact, if you’re even a little bit different, a mundane piece of content can easily go viral. Like this one…” (Mitch for Alistair).
  • Is the E-Reader Dead? – Tom’s Guide. “As huge book nerds, this information may be both obvious and deeply disturbing. I’ve been a fan of having a sole e-reader for a very long time. I like the fact that the books are ‘isolated’ and that I have no other distraction than reading with these devices. I also enjoy the fact that they were designed with the sole intent of reading. With that, I read most of my books (and I still read a ton) on my iPhone using the Kindle app. Probably not good for my eyes. Probably get too distracted by other apps. But… another device to lug around? Ugh. Well, is it the end for the e-reader?…” (Mitch for Hugh).

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