Verizon’s 5G Rollout

This past Wednesday, Verizon introduced 5G capabilities in the cities of Chicago and Minneapolis. In doing so, Verizon became the first telecommunications company to serve its customers with the new technology. Although there have been complaints about spotty service and inconsistent coverage, these appear to be only temporary delays which are expected when a new technology is introduced to the public. As Verizon and other telecommunications companies optimize their 5G capabilities, the general public will be able to utilize the technology without a hitch. 5G wireless networks will prove as tremendous improvements over current 4G technologies. In fact, estimates put current Continue reading Verizon’s 5G Rollout

From A Bird’s Eye View: Agri-Tech

Agricultural scandals like the 2019 e-coli infections of Romaine lettuce have led many to question what they eat, where it comes from, and how it’s farmed. This combined with the prediction that by 2050 Earth will be inhibited by 9 billion humans has got a lot of people thinking. One idea is the concept of vertical farming which increases output and decreases yield volatility because of its predictable nature. Vertical farming really hit the spotlight in 2017 when Softbank raised $200 million for a company called Plenty. This has led many people to ask questions like is something so capital-intensive Continue reading From A Bird’s Eye View: Agri-Tech

The Upward Trend of Esports

More news in the world of Esports has emerged since my last post about professional gaming. The NBA franchise, the Miami Heat purchased a significant stake in the Esports organization, the Misfits on January 10th. The Heat also announced a partnership along with this deal, in which the basketball franchise will “cross-promote” both organizations. The team tweeted a picture of both the Miami Heat’s logo and the Misfits’ new logo side by side. The Esports team changed their logo to match the color of the Heat’s logo, further promoting the partnership. The basketball team’s CEO, Nick Arison made an official Continue reading The Upward Trend of Esports

Middlemen: Connecting Consumers and Producers

Most of what people think about when the term “Middleman” is brought up, is somebody who doesn’t provide much value. Why hire a middleman when you could do the job yourself? Even today when the internet has lowered search and transaction costs, it seems as if the job of a middleman would soon disappear. But this notion may not be true. Middlemen provide a service of efficiency which does have value in itself, but some argue that this job will become obsolete as the internet is more widely available today. The cost of searching for an item has gone down Continue reading Middlemen: Connecting Consumers and Producers

Jeff Bezos’s Economic Prophecy

A few weeks ago, Jeff Bezos (of amazon.com fame) invited reporters to tour his space venture “Blue Origin.” The company has existed in some form or another since the early 2000’s, but this was the first time that Blue Origin held a formal press event. The New York Times put together a great article on the event, written by Kenneth Chang. While much of the proceedings focused on the business plans and technological achievements of the firm, Bezos also took a little time to extoll his vision for the future of humanity (as you might expect from a billionaire who privately bankrolled a Continue reading Jeff Bezos’s Economic Prophecy

No one knows how to make a pencil: Globalization and interdependence

Consider the following question: If you…wanted to…go into the forest naked and create something from scratch, anything, what do you think you could pull off? The latest Freakonomics podcast points out something very unexpected; no individual knows how to create a pencil.  While it may seem unimportant that we won’t have artisanal pencils in the future, it raises some interesting questions about globalization and the interdependence that it has created in the production processes of even simple goods. We have evolved into a highly specialized and widely globalized society.  Each piece of a pencil, for example, is made in different places Continue reading No one knows how to make a pencil: Globalization and interdependence

Not All Energy Efficiency is Created Equally

We are constantly bombarded with advertisements of goods that market their innovations in efficiency. Whether it is a car with a higher MPG, or a washing machine that uses less water per load, companies are quickly realizing that environmental efficiency is a huge appeal to a broad range of consumers. Although energy efficiency with everyday goods is a step in the right direction, not all energy efficiency should be treated equally. In fact, some cases of energy efficiency might end up being more harmful in the long run. Although this may seem counterintuitive, it can be explained with Jevons Paradox. Continue reading Not All Energy Efficiency is Created Equally

Increase in Cyber Attacks will Disrupt Global Economy

As people, businesses, and governments approach a more digitally dependent way of life, the risk of breached technological security becomes much larger of an issue. Cyber attacks are rapidly increasing in frequency, targeting celebrities, large businesses, and financial institutions. In mid June of this year, hackers gained access to JPMorgan’s internet servers that contained user information of current and former customers who accessed the bank’s websites. The bank didn’t discover the attack until about two months later, but they promptly found and closed all access paths to the vulnerable servers. A few days ago, JP Morgan stated that contact information for 76 million households and 7 million Continue reading Increase in Cyber Attacks will Disrupt Global Economy

More money, more problems

Most rich countries had a drastic fall in crime rates in the early to mid 1990s. This decrease in crime seemed inexplicable.The theories run from an “aging population, higher incarceration and immigration rates, less exposure to lead paint, better police tactics…” the list goes on and on. Freakonomics even contains a chapter on the possible linkage between Roe v. Wade (1972), increases in abortions, and the reduction of crime; the reduction of children being born into poor circumstances being the reason for this abrupt (and welcomed) reduction in crime. The reasons all come with their fair share of anecdotes, but Continue reading More money, more problems

Getting it out of your System

I stumbled upon this interesting Freakonomics podcast that discusses the effects of video games and the internet. Dubner and Levitt would like to argue that playing video games may reduce the level of outward violence seen in adolescent males. This may happen because they are “getting it out of their system” by playing a violent game. If an adolescent boy (as the example goes in the podcast) is playing video games, then he cannot be out doing anything else, including violent crimes. The extreme case is that the child does not have time to commit any violent crime. The podcast Continue reading Getting it out of your System