Business

Tim O’Reilly Nails the Importance of Amazon’s Echo/Alexa

Tim O'Reilly (who is joining us at Techonomy 2016 in November) has written the best piece about Alexa yet. He doesn't just rave about the machine's astonishing capabilities, but breaks it down so we begin to understand what causes it to so romance users. It's not just the information behind it but how it prioritizes tasks and allows us to interact. It's a must-read for anyone who wants to understand where technology is going.   More

Business Transportation

Space: The Next Fiscal Frontier?

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NASA has increasingly taken a backseat in the world of manned space exploration. While that trend may not be great for America's role in space, it has opened the door for a revolution in private sector space projects. From Elon Musk's Space X project to the rise of nanosatellites, outer space has never been so open for investment and innovation. This piece was originally published in the 2014 edition of Techonomy magazine.   More

Business Global Tech Startup Culture

Visiting a Bustling Tech Incubator in Dubai

Louis Lebbos and Muhammed Mekki brought a Silicon Valley-vibe to their Dubai incubator, AstroLabs (Photo courtesy of AstroLabs).

As Dubai continues its epic transformation into a global commerce hub, two entrepreneurs have set up a small piece of Silicon Valley in the UAE. Louis Lebbos and Muhammed Mekki 's AstroLabs incubator now hosts 77 different startups in an open, modern coworking office space that would be right at home on the streets of San Francisco. Its members, from places as distant as Vietnam and Kansas City, all want a piece of the emerging Middle East market.   More

Business Jobs

Employees Losing Faith With Companies That Don’t Get Digital

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The digital future has taken the corporate world by storm, but many employees are jumping ship. A new study by MIT Sloan Management Review, in collaboration with Deloitte, finds that fully half of employees who feel their company is not digitally developing fast enough plan to leave within a year. Corporations worldwide need to get on board the digital wave or risk a massive talent drain.   More

Business Global Tech

Billion Dollar Shave Club

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A company that first gained fame with its goofy YouTube ads has now been bought for close to $1 billion, as a European consumer good giant tries to catch up with Amazon and other titans of the digital world. Dollar Shave Club's big money buyout from Unilever means good things for digital commerce startups looking to turn a nice profit.   More

Business Global Tech

China’s Empty Incubators are a Sign of Development Run Amok

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For years, the Chinese state has managed to strong arm the country’s economy through global crises by making huge investments into sectors like real estate and infrastructure. That top-down capital strategy is hitting a wall when it comes to China’s new dream: growing start-ups. Across the country, brand new innovation centers sit empty as education levels fail to meet China's demand for entrepreneurs.   More

Business Community Insights Society

From Gutenberg to Zuckerberg: The Transformation of Business

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Six hundred years ago, Gutenberg’s press ushered in an era of mass communication. Radio, TV, and film all broadcast a single message and make a clear distinction between broadcaster and audience. Today's digital platforms create a new world of mass collaboration, with more distributed, diverse and personalized interactions. In this “many-to-many” world, we are equally broadcaster and audience. We are all co-creators.   More

Analytics & Data Business Internet of Things

It Takes More Than a Machine to Know You: Assistance In An Instrumented World

An Amazon Echo device (Courtesy of Shutterstock)

There’s a big gap between today's smart virtual assistants and the futuristic robot-butlers of fiction that anticipate our every need. For the foreseeable future, it will still take a human touch to understand how people assess value and solve problems creatively. Still, in the context of IoT, on-demand everything, and ubiquitous analytics, tech and humans are coming closer to jointly becoming “trusted advisors.”   More

Bio & Life Sciences Business Healthcare

Consumers to Health Insurers: Keep it Simple

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The American healthcare markethas undergone a period of rapid change in recent years. Chief among these changes has been a general shift towards consumer choice, prompting the rollout of new tech products in a bid to entice customers. But a new study suggests the best way to win over consumers is to bring things back down to earth.   More

Business Global Tech Government

Obama’s Big Start-up Seminar

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President Obama wants to encourage young entrepreneurs, and if he has to go out and lecture them himself, he’s willing to do it. Over the course of the two-day Global Entrepreneurship Summit last week, the president found time to share tips with young business owners on pitching their ideas. Plus, he talked with Mark Zuckerberg, and interviewed young entrepreneurs from Rwanda, Egypt, and Peru.   More

Business Government Jobs

As Race Heats Up, Clinton Talks Tech

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Having fought off an ambitious Bernie Sanders and now preparing to enter a brutal fight with a fiery and unpredictable Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton is taking a bit of a detour this week into the world of tech. She wants to forgive student debt for young entrepreneurs, bring broadband to every home in America, and defend net neutrality. Plus, Silicon Valley is starting to get on board.   More

Analytics & Data Business Society

Endless Questions on AI at a Techonomy Dinner

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How big an impact will artificial intelligence have on business and society? Should we fear it? What will it mean for jobs? At a recent Techonomy salon dinner discussion on AI, top leaders from Accenture, IBM, SAP, and Verizon, among others, gave some fascinating answers.   More

Business Finance

Faced With Impending Disruption, the Financial Ecosystem Must Change

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The world is buzzing about fintech and the impending disruption in the banking industry. Smarter technology companies are attempting to give customers quality service and an experience that’s relevant to the world in which they live, and big banks are being left behind. The speed of innovation might surprise all of us.   More

Business Techonomy Events

Replay of Techonomy NYC Webcast

The video hasn't been sliced and diced yet, but the Livestream can still be watched--including great sessions on IoT, The future of health with David Agus, Marketing with Carolyn Everson of Facebook, danah boyd and Gillian Tett (final session) on the perils of a data-centric society, Sec. of Transportation Anthony Foxx, author Rana Foroohar, sharing economy expert Arun Sundararajan, and many more deep thinkers. The program is in two chunks-morning and afternoon. We will break it up into sessions in coming days.   More

Analytics & Data Business Techonomy Events

Techonomy NYC Is a Lens on a New Kind of Society

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We curated an astonishingly diverse group of speakers to provoke us on May 26 about how tech and the Internet of Things points to an entirely new sort of society. It changes health, cities, how we'll work, business structure and strategy, the future of marketing, and more. The entire event, which took place Thursday May 26, is now available on video. Program details here: http://techonomy.com/conf/nyc/agenda/.   More

Business Transportation

Trucking Could be the First Destination for the Self-driving Revolution

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Self-driving cars tend to spur the selfish parts of our imagination. When we read the latest article about Google’s or Tesla’s self-driving experiments, we picture quiet naps on the commute home from work as the steering wheel turns in front of us: An idyllic moment in the future of personal transport. But despite our earnest […]   More

Business Jobs

New Tools to Tackle the Business Diversity Crisis

Illustration by Hanna Barczyk

Almost every company is embarrassingly uniform in its ethnic and gender makeup, even as data increasingly shows that in diversity is strength. Now, finally, software and other tools are emerging that may help bring a more natural human variety to organizations. Hiring women, minorities, and people who generally don’t look and think like the boss is not just good for society. More diversified workforces help create more profitable and faster-growing companies.   More

Business Global Tech Healthcare

Power to the Period People

Miki Agrawal, co-founder and CEO of Thinx, at right.

Why have we seen almost no innovation in the feminine hygiene space? Mostly because we even feel the need call it “feminine hygiene” at all, softening our speech with terms like “that time of the month” and “women’s troubles” to cover up the embarrassment. The taboo of menstruation means innovators feel uncomfortable tackling its management, leaving today’s women and girls stuck with basically the same products available to them 75 years ago. One company is working to change that: Thinx.   More

Analytics & Data Business Internet of Things

Balancing Privacy and User Experience: The Challenge of the Digital Age

Illustration for Techonomy by Clara Kirkpatrick

If companies fail to meet heightened data protection standards and other growing customer expectations around privacy and respect for their data, they may be fined, lose customer trust, and possibly put the entire company at risk. This is especially true in Europe. At the same time, companies that lose sight of the customer experience will not be successful long term. The conundrum is a kind of “digital Scylla and Charybdis”.   More

Business Opinion

How to Succeed at Crowdsourcing Innovation

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Vigilant business leaders fear becoming irrelevant. We must encourage our employees to want to innovate – not because they are under threat, but because they are eager to be engaged. Much of an organization’s best innovation is driven by ideas that come bottom-up, originating from the grassroots. How can leaders effectively crowdsource innovation?   More