Steven Hawking a true legend has passed away and one of the smartest individuals alive if not the smartest. His work will forever be ingrained in our society and some have said his disability gave him an advantage to learn even more and think in unique ways.
In what I think is one of the best editorial pieces I have read that has ever come out of the Huffington Post by Jason Fagone: The Lottery Winners is a great piece that details how a semi-retired Michigan couple embarks on a journey to take advantage of an opportunity in the Michigan and then the Massachusetts lottery system. The Lottery WinFall games talk about how a loophole in a system can be exploited and those either with enough intelligence or hard work (in this case they spent thousands of hours doing mundane tasks and driving 700+ miles through Canada and back into the USA) can create a short lived business opportunity.
It's a great piece that I'm bookmarking along with the original Boston Globe Spotlight piece:
Another article of respect from last week: https://www.buzzfeed.com/ryanmac/this-is-the-man-who-helped-peter-thiel-demolish-gawker-mr-a?utm_term=.uvLLwzDam#.gnYkq4aQ5
Watch the 43 minutes of Tupac Shakurs interview from Prison when he was in the Clinton Correctional facility in New York. Some of the crazy things to hear knowing what happened to him the following year was that he said he has already taken 5 bullets and god willing doesn't plan to take anymore. That his music will live on long after he's gone. Some other really intriguing stuff in this classic.
Amazon has yet to announce where they are going to put their newest headquarters called HQ2 into Overtown, Miami. With some proprietary AI software I've been testing and using Google Trends I can say with a high degree of probability that Overtown Miami will be the announced city for the second headquarters. If you look at search volume and spikes you get these clues.
Here are a few examples that you can see:
Notice the huge jump in late January for the neighborhood of Overtown that is just west of Downtown Miami and only miles from Jeff Bezos high school.
If you look at some of the other competitors and candidates bidding for HQ2 and their such volume jumps and AI metrics I've been monitoring have not yielded the same results:
Montgomery County, Maryland was definitely in contention but most likely due to over regulation and Maryland being known as an anti-business friendly state has hurt it's chances of providing thousands of new jobs to Marylanders.
Theres more data and articles that I've read through trying to work against my logic and the data but I can't find data to support another city. There are reasons I can think of that would make the area not so desirable such as Hurricanes and rising sea levels but every location has it's positives and negatives and Miami definitely has a lot of positives. Time will tell as I write this late at night on the 13th of February.
Bloomberg just did a great interactive piece covering 2017. There are some key points that stuck out to me:
More money went into startups in 2017 than any other year in history. SoftBank certainly led the way with huge investments in already established startups and Theranos receiving a huge end of year investment. 2017's total was $141.3 Billion invested in startups. 2016 investments paired with 2015 investments. In January of 2016 when I sat in on meetings at Battery Ventures, Sequoia Capital, and Greylock Partners they all said that they were getting back to basics on VC investments. Take it FWIW.
Hong Kong has the highest real estate prices in the world and they continued to climb while their unemplyment continued to dip to only 3.0% where Japan has 2.8% unemployment followed by the US and Isreal at 4.1%, United Kingdom at 4.3% and Germany at it's lowest level since reunification. Apollo Golbal raised 24.6 billion dollars for the largest fund ever.
Student Loans have now exceeded the total size of U.S. High yield corporate market. This is a catch 20/20. Education costs continue to rise so there should be a rise in student loans which has continiously risen since 2005. This also equates to more students in school which is a positive thing IMO. More education typically = better society right?
Art market continues to reach new highs. Salvator Mundi sells for a record $450.3 million dollars at auction. Price was actually 400 Million combined with a 50 million dollar auction house fee. Off the top of my head this was sold to the Louve in Abu Dhabi. The total cost to build this museum was less than the cost of the one painting. The naming rights however are even more than the cost to build the museum. So what is art? Is it a name and recognition? The most expensive piece of art in the world is the Mona Lisa. The auction house did a fantastic job marketing this as the second Mona Lisa and when you have a piece on display for the next 100 years and people flock at $60.000 a ticket to go and see the second Mona Lisa the return on investment and name that the 2nd Louve has made for itself tends to make sense.
A rare glimpse and talk with one of the worlds smartest men Jim Simons who started Renaissance Technologies which is the most successful hedge fund of all time. If you enjoy mathematics then you will appreciate this:
The myths and rumors you may hear about where there are cables underneath the ocean that provide internet service throughout the world are actually true. Cool story of the day is that Microsoft is improving it's efficiency: https://www.zdnet.com/article/microsofts-subsea-speed-monster-a-cable-16-million-times-faster-than-your-broadband/
Between boarding time and taking off you soon will be able to go to any city in the world thanks to SpaceX. Elon Musk who I've written about a few times... Recently put out this video:
Now you can travel intergalactically from NYC to Shanghai with only 39 minutes of flight time. This is the future of travel coming in 2024.
Burning Man comes with a lot of amazing experiences and stories for a first time visitor. It's a place where you need to go and see for yourself. The one story I'm roughly journaling out for my own memory is about my first experience to the Temple in 2017.
Temple is known as this deep spiritual place on the playa where people share their personal messages through letters, prayers, and there own artistic inspirations to showcase things that have a deep meaning to them. For example there were writings on the wall that said "I Love you Dad. Sorry I didn't call you more." The most striking thing that happened as I walked through was a girl reading a poster on the wall and as shes emotionally reading and looking at the photo somebody says to her "What is the story behind the poster you put up and are reading."
Her story is as follows:
This is our friend Joey (Name possibly incorrect) from Salt Lake City. He came with us every year to Burning Man and was a big part of our camp. He was always so joyful and kind dancing around. Last winter he was shoveling snow for his neighbors during a snow storm and a new neighbor in the area didn't know who he was so she called the police and it was two cops who showed up when he got frightened and defensive with his shovel and the rookie police officer puled out his gun and accidentally shot him in self defense not realizing it was a shovel. She said it was very sad and he was with them every year at burning man but this year he's still there in spirit. I then said wow. Thats truly amazing. So you just put up this poster to honor him?
She says oh no. Not at all I just happen to be here right now at the exact moment you were and saw this. I have absolutely no idea who put this up....
“If you already know it's going to work, it's not an experiment, and only through experimentation can you get real invention. The most important inventions come from trial and error with lots of failure, and the failure is critical, and it's also embarrassing.” – Jeff Bezos
Bezos may be talking about the Amazon Fire Phone that came out in September of 2014 and didn't sell at all (literally I think the total sold is less than 1,000), which from the outside, was considered an embarrassing failure for the company but true entrepreneurs take chances, learn, and adapt. If you look at the other chances he took then you may think he's a genius for the successes such as the creation of the ever so popular Amazon Echo, and dozens of innovations that made the original company named Cadabra Inc. but was changed to Amazon in 1996 as the first major online bookseller and today one of the biggest companies of all time.
Startups fail all the time. Obsess over your clients and fail fast according to Bezos.