Saturday, November 26, 2016 0 comments

Articles of Interest for the week ending Nov 26 2016

Here are some articles I read recently that you may find interesting. This time around, very few are investing-related...

  • "Google, Facebook, and Microsoft Are Remaking Themselves Around AI" (Cade Metz for Wired): Overview of how these tech companies are leading the research into AI.
  • "Inside Fitbit’s Quest to Make Fitness Trackers Invisible" (David Pierce for Wired): I was thinking about wearables as a potential investment. In particular, Fitbit (FIT) has sold off since the IPO--it's kind of confusing since it seems like there was a big share dilution along the way--but is this a fad or is it the future? Fitbit certainly has the leadership position and strong brand (so far) and its balance sheet and income statement looks ok too. I probably won't invest since history is too short and it's hard to predict the future but I'm studying it a bit.
  • "Can America’s Companies Survive America’s Most Aggressive Investors?" (Alana Semuels for The Atlantic): Debatable argument on whether activist investors are too short-term-oriented and hurting the long-term success of corporations and the country. One can never be sure with these things. Companies are cutting back R&D and not investing in workers or plant & equipment, but is that because of excessive short-term pressure or is it because opportunities aren't available or they are unable to compete against other companies (possibly from other parts of the world)?
  • "Mapping the End of Malaria" (Bill Gates): Gates Foundation has played a major role in combatting malaria--did you know that mosquitoes are the #1 killer of humans?--and Gates suggests that Malaria may be eradicated by 2040. If so, it will definitely be the #1 accomplishment in human health for the 1st half of this century.
  • "Our Driverless Future" (Sue Halpern, New York Review of Books; review of 'Driverless: Intelligent Cars and the Road Ahead' by Hod Lipson and Melba Kurman): Author goes over the developments in driverless car technology and its potential societal impact. I think it is going to take much longer than many believe but when it does happen, it will be revolutionary.
  • Bill Gates on Warren Buffett (article here and slideshow here; July 5, 2016): Gates briefly recounts the first time he met Buffett and has some photos of their private lives.

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