Articles

The unexpected ways our lives will change when cars drive themselves

The unexpected ways our lives will change when cars drive themselves

The expected shift to battery-powered vehicles that drive themselves will have repercussions that extend far beyond U.S. roadways — altering industries as varied as real estate, oil, auto repair and retail.

At least that’s the view of Benedict Evans, a longtime tech observer and partner at the Silicon Valley venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz. In a recent blog post titled, “Cars and second-order consequences,” Evans speculates on the many ways the technology will change the lives of motorists and the economy at large. “Something will happen, and probably something big,” he writes.

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The future of agriculture is already here

The future of agriculture is already here

A robot that grafts seedlings. Fleets of remote-controlled, self-regulating greenhouses. Organic rice that’s grown entirely by drones. Sure, we’ve heard about agricultural drones in theory, but that still seems light years away - but in Japan, these kinds of agri-tech innovations are already readily employed — if not downright common — across the country.

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Why Japan is crazy about housing

Why Japan is crazy about housing

Japan is famous for its radical residential architecture. But as Tokyo architect Alastair Townsend explains, its penchant for avant garde housing may be driven by the country’s bizarre real estate economics, as much as its designers’ creativity.

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Ai can make us all dress better. So why isn't the fashion industry using it more?

Ai can make us all dress better. So why isn't the fashion industry using it more?

As online shopping continues to grow, it’s imperative for companies to utilize tools that can help them attract (and keep) customers. AI can do that in a multitude of ways. It can serve as a communication method to update an audience on collection releases and product availability. It can provide interactive storytelling and unique digital experiences with the help of creative algorithms. It can strengthen e-commerce by tracking users’ preferences and giving them a customized shopping experience... So what's next?

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The way you shop will change forever this year. Here's how

The way you shop will change forever this year. Here's how

The internet forever changed shopping, the physical retail environment lagged behind. That is until recently. In 2016, we saw some of the first hints of how traditional stores are about to change, too: an Amazon store that lets you grab whatever you like without paying for it, e-commerce companies open physical locations, and high fashion taking inspiration from your local chain drugstore self-checkout. And over the next few years, the brick-and-mortar buying experience will change even more dramatically.

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Mashable spent 2 weeks socializing in VR, and saw the future

Mashable spent 2 weeks socializing in VR, and saw the future

When Mark Zuckerberg donned an Oculus Rift on stage at the Oculus Connect conference last fall to show off a group of avatars playing cards in virtual reality, it was meant to be a peek at the future of social networking. But it turns out that future is already here: Even without Facebook's direct participation, social VR is quickly becoming a thing. Currently, most of the public's limited interest in VR is centered on where we know the money already is: gaming. But social VR is already beginning to connect real people from around the world.

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Solving All the Wrong Problems

Solving All the Wrong Problems

We are overloaded daily with new discoveries, patents and inventions all promising a better life, but that better life has not been forthcoming for most. In fact, most new startups seems to only target a tiny slice of the population. As one colleague in tech explained it recently, for most people working on such projects, the goal is basically to provide for themselves everything that their mothers no longer do.

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Alexa: Amazon’s Operating System

Alexa: Amazon’s Operating System

In short, Amazon is building the operating system of the home — its name is Alexa and it's creeping into multiple products from speakers to fridges to lamps and cars — and it doesn’t need to make a dime on Alexa, at least not directly: the vast majority of purchases are initiated at home; today that may mean creating a shopping list, but in the future it will mean ordering things for delivery, and for Prime customers the future is already here. Alexa just makes it that much easier, furthering Amazon’s goal of being the logistics provider — and tax collector — for basically everyone and everything.

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Amazon patents show flying warehouses that send delivery drones to your door

We’ve known about Amazon’s drone delivery ambitions since 2013.  But patent filings from Amazon, circulated today by CB Insights’ Zoe Leavitt, reveal more details about how the e-commerce titan could make drone deliveries work at scale, namely through “airborne fulfillment centers.” Yes, that’s a warehouse in a zeppelin.

How Amazon innovates in ways that Google and Apple can't

How Amazon innovates in ways that Google and Apple can't

In short, Amazon has shown a remarkable ability to succeed in a wide variety of different product categories. That’s a contrast to most other high-profile tech companies that are really good in one area — Google’s dominant online services or Apple’s extraordinarily profitable hardware — but struggle when the quest for growth pushes them outside their zone of core competency.

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