Zag To The Zig #40 :: Comic Sans, Crazy Patents and Central Banks goes Digital
|Gerrie Smits||Sep 15, 2020|
Welcome to the new subscribers! All of a sudden there was a flurry of you. Nice!
What to expect from Zag To The Zig? A weekly collection of things that triggered my curiosity and/or challenged the status quo. And the odd emoji.
If you still like it in 3 weeks, feel free to invite some friends. Every little helps. 🙏🙏
In the Tech Basement this week
There’s nothing more typical for being included in ZTTZ than busting a myth and challenging a buzzword. Today: “disruption”.
This study from the Boston University shows that since 2000, the so-called disruption of the ‘old companies’ has actually declined. Top companies tend to remain top companies. One of the main reasons: the investment by these companies in software, giving them a competitive edge in scaling. How ironic. 💣
🤖 A robot/algorithm called GPT-3 that wrote this entire article. Quite astonishing when you actually read the article and how it came about.
Sidenote: should we say “robots that…” or move to “robots who…” ✍️
Related, this looks like a very decent (and free) course, on media savviness, spotting fake news, creating media,...
Out with the old, in with the new? Not completely. There are still 2 million Americans using Netflix to order DVDs and the company is making quite good money with it.
Microsoft (and Amazon and who knows who else) want to analyse your emotions. This and other data-driven (and ambitious?) patents that are being filed by big tech companies. 😭😤😍
In the Attic of Innovation
Talking about patents, this is a lovely newsletter. My 9-year old daughter always says she wants to be an innovator. So I’m going to force her to read this list of new patent filings every week. You got to love the Nike Sports Chair with live game integration.
Phew. The art of persuasion hasn’t changed in 2000 years. 5 things we can learn from Aristotle. 🇬🇷
In the Economy Room
Check out this (long-ish) report on the history, motivations, plans,... of Central Bank Digital Currencies.
The city of Zug already did this, but now the canton of Zug is also accepting tax payments in bitcoin and other crypto-currencies. I wonder if it actually gets used.
The Decentralised Tokenised Economy: check.
🏘️🏘️ Fior a while, 'I’ve been intrigued by RealT, a blockchain-based real estate company that sells parts of property and uses smart contracts to pay out the proportion of the rent on a daily/weekly basis.
That is quite remarkable in its own right, but now they are also looking into how you could use those ‘shares’ as collateral for a loan.
In the Ethics Corridor
Have you thought about measuring the carbon impact of your website? Have a go. Because digital is not carbon-neutral. I assume the numbers are pretty rough and there’s debate about the accuracy of the metrics, but it’s nevertheless an interesting conversation starter.
Ah, the Comic Sans font, how we hate'(d) it! But how did it come about? This YouTube doc digs into some of the history of early computer culture, including Easter Eggs and CTR-ALT-DEL. Melancholy!
🏁 End note: 1 thing I’ll be doing this week
I’ve been using my beta-invite for the mmhmm-app to expand my can-you-do-a-webinar-from-home set-up. Reminded me of my old tv-making days.
First impressions are good, so I’ll be finetuning.
BTW: I have a few invites left for Mmhmm, so shoot me a message if you want to have a play with this video-call-software.