Tag Archives: Business

Net neutrality sounds good, but it’s worse


By Ev Ehrlich – Think about a newspaper – it works the same way. The Chronicle attracts readers so it can attract advertisers. It also attracts advertisers so it can attract readers. What if The Chronicle weren’t allowed to accept money from advertisers because “newspaper neutrality” made it impossible to let some stores advertise and others not? The price of the paper would go up, because the reader would have to carry the entire cost of the paper.

The Internet works the same way. Users – you and I – carry more than our fair share, while the mega-sites pay less than they should given the congestion they cause and the value of a connection to them.

That’s part of the reason why the profit margins of companies like Google and Facebook and Yahoo are six to eight times those of the companies such as Verizon or AT&T or Comcast.

When you get right down to it, you and I and Selby are subsidizing these behemoths; no wonder they’re the biggest proponents of neutrality. more> http://tinyurl.com/n7wxlnw

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Updates from GE


[ COLLABORATION ]

The Micro Kitchen from the Microfactory Could Go Big

GE – The online design community FirstBuild recently launched a design challenge to develop a “micro kitchen,” the culinary equivalent of the Swiss Army knife that holds everything required to prepare a late night snack as well as a Thanksgiving feast. Today, it cut the ribbon on an open-design “microfactory” to produce it.

The microfactory will tap FirstBuild’s global, collaborative group of designers, fabricators and enthusiasts to crack engineering and design challenges. The plant’s small size will allow it to customize appliances through small-batch production and fast-track them to market. “FirstBuild will able to create, design, build and sell new innovations for the home faster than ever before,” says Venkat Venkatakrishnan, R&D director at GE Appliances. more> http://tinyurl.com/lgqsnea

Why Government Fails, and How to Stop It


By Paul C. Light – 41 important past government failures (between 2001 – 2014) from a search of news stories listed in the Pew Research Center’s “News Interest Index” were identified.

Patterns and characteristics in the dataset of significant government failures:

  • Most of the failures involved errors of omission, not commission
  • Vision with execution is the clear driver of success, just as its absence is an equation for failure
  • The number of government failures has increased over time

more> http://tinyurl.com/q3lhpqk

97 Percent of Key Industries Doubt Security Compliance Can Defy Hackers


(GlebStock/Shutterstock.com )By Aliya Sternstein – Only 3 percent of information technology executives at utilities and other businesses critical to society strongly believe security rules and standards decrease threats to the systems running their operations.

“The regulations themselves are not getting the job done. It’s hard to have regulations in this area that are dynamic enough to be helpful,” Larry Ponemon told Nextgov. more> http://tinyurl.com/orhgyz3

Updates from GE


This Fuel Cell Startup Could Spark a Revolution

GE – A fuel cell works like a battery, using a simple chemical reaction to provide energy. In fuel cells, this reaction involves hydrogen molecules abundant in natural gas and oxygen from ordinary air.

It sounds easy enough, but the process is full of pitfalls. Car companies, for example, have tried to make fuel cells work as a replacement for the internal combustion engine for more 20 years without commercial success.

But scientists in GE labs recently cracked an important conundrum involving one iteration of the technology called solid oxide fuel cell, or SOFC.

The fuel cell has no moving parts. The guts of the cell look like a stack of cookies. Each cookie is a metallic plate with a maze of flow channels cut into the bottom and a square of black “icing” on top.

That icing is the core of the breakthrough that makes the solid oxide fuel cell work. It contains three layers made from special ceramic materials: the cathode on top, the anode on the bottom, and a dense layer of solid oxide electrolyte in the middle.

GE is using additive thermal spray technology originally developed to protect parts working inside jet engines to deposit the anode and the electrolyte. more> http://tinyurl.com/pexm6fo