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Google Winds Down Stadia Game-Streaming Service Three Years After Launch

Google said it will terminate services for Stadia, its troubled cloud gaming service, after it failed to gain traction with players. Google said it will terminate services for Stadia, its troubled cloud gaming service, after it failed to gain traction with players almost three years after its launch. Stadia was an attempt from Alphabet Inc.’s Google to take on the video game console giants with a platform of its own. Unlike traditional consoles, Stadia allowed users to play games on devices such as Android phones and Chromecast apps for TV, by funneling data directly from Google’s server clusters. Its subscription cost $10 a month. “While Stadia’s approach to streaming games for consumers was built on a strong technology foundation, it hasn’t gained the traction with users that we expected,” Phil Harrison, Stadia vice president and general manager, wrote in a blog post on Thursday. “So we’ve made the difficult decision to begin winding down our Stadia streaming service.” [time-brightcove not-tgx=”true”] Read More: Google Is Making It Easier to Remove Personal Info From Search. Here’s How Players will be able to access their games library and play through Jan. 18. Google will refund Stadia hardware purchases, games and add-on content made through the Google Store, Harrison said. Google invested generously in Stadia in an effort to reach well beyond the audience of traditional gamers or those who couldn’t afford a pricey Xbox or PlayStation console. It shelled out tens of millions of dollars to get games like Red Dead Redemption 2 on the platform, Bloomberg has reported. Stadia debuted in November 2019 with popular third-party franchises including Destiny 2 and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. But Google’s ultimate goal was to pack Stadia with original content and the company hired hundreds of game developers from Montreal and Los Angeles. They didn’t have long to ramp up before Google shuttered its in-house game development in early 2021. People familiar with the studio said at the time that the rule-bound tech giant struggled to foster an environment nurturing to video game development, which is interdisciplinary and can be chaotic. The impact of Covid-19 spurred a hiring freeze at Google, which presented challenges for staffing up the division. Gamers also chafed at the idea that games they purchased for $60 a piece didn’t feel like they belonged to them, since they were stored in the cloud — a concern validated by Thursday’s shutdown notice. Accustomed to owning their own hardware, some gamers felt like Stadia appeared too jarring of a shift. The service missed its sales targets on controllers and monthly active users by hundreds of thousands, Bloomberg has reported. Read More: Google’s AI Lab, DeepMind, Offers ‘Gift to Humanity’ with Protein Structure Solution With the exit of Stadia, that leaves Amazon.com Inc.’s Luna, Microsoft Corp.’s xCloud and Nvidia Corp.’s GeForce Now to chart the future of cloud gaming. (Updates with additional context from fourth paragraph.).....»»

Category: topSource: time4 hr. 49 min. ago Related News

Why Your Next Airbnb May Have a Pickleball Court

More short-term hosts are playing to renters' love of pickleball. Addison Seale manages a luxury Airbnb Inc. listing near Joshua Tree National Park in southern California, a short-term rental market that boomed during the pandemic as people fled cramped cities in search of outdoor space. The house is sleek—a single story, three-bedroom concrete home with a deck, hot tub, small above-ground pool and a striking view of the desert. But to set the home apart from the 1,200 other rentals in the area, Seale, 25, and her fiancé decided against an in-ground pool, and chose a pickleball court instead. “Compared to putting in a pool it was extremely cheap because it’s a concrete slab they had to finish and put the lines on,” she said. “We really just wanted something we could use and make us stand out.” [time-brightcove not-tgx=”true”] Seale’s property is one of almost 1,300 short-term rentals across Airbnb and Expedia Group Inc.’s Vrbo that mention pickleball in their listing title or description, according to industry data provider AirDNA. The number of citations has increased 32% from 2019. Read More: Why Older People Love Pickleball So Much While the number of residences boasting pickleball courts is still small compared with the more than 8 million listings combined for Airbnb and Vrbo, having homes that will entice guests helps the companies compete with hotels. After two years of Covid lockdowns, the travel companies have been enjoying a boom in demand, with revenue in the second quarter topping analysts’ expectations. But shares of Airbnb and Expedia are down about 37% and 48%, respectively, this year as analysts expect travel to taper off toward the end of 2022 amid high inflation and an uncertain economic outlook. Property listings that mention pickleball are down about 200 this year, likely a reflection of softer demand for popular sites near mountain and lake getaways, AirDNA said. Pickleball—played with a plastic, hollow-ball and wide paddle—resembles a cross between tennis, badminton and ping-pong. Players can compete as singles or as doubles on a court or even a driveway marked with chalk. All that’s needed is a lightweight and inexpensive net and paddles, making the game easily accessible to most people. The popularity of the sport exploded recently, growing 39% over the last two years to 4.8 million players, according to a study from the Sports & Fitness Industry Association, a global trade group for sports and fitness brands. Players in the 18-34 age range make up almost 29% of total players, but among serious pickleball enthusiasts, those who play eight times or more a year, almost a third are 65 or older. Advertising pickleball perks can help short-term rental hosts get noticed amid a flood of new properties that have cropped up since the pandemic. Demand for homes has swelled as people take advantage of flexible work options. More guests are looking for stays of a month or more, and many are bringing their whole families in search of a space to combine work and leisure. The top amenities people are looking for include home offices, fast Wi-Fi, backyards and pet-friendly homes, according to Airbnb. The San Francisco-based company said it doesn’t track searches for pickleball, but does note that travelers say amenities are a top priority for a great trip, especially when guests are booking for longer stays. On a blog post for hosts, Airbnb advises: “Thoughtfully outfitting your space and adding popular amenities to your listing will help you stand out from the crowd.” One host on the site suggested that other hosts “write your listing to invite people who value and enjoy the same things you do.” That’s what Mike and Barbara Burch did. The Sedona, Arizona, residents converted a guest house on their property into an Airbnb listing and installed a pickleball court in September 2020 after playing at their church’s gym before the pandemic. It’s been a draw for reservations, and the couple, who describe themselves as “very active seniors,” finds new playing partners when their guests pick up the paddles. Read More: Airbnb Made Overtourism Worse. Now It Wants to Fix That “I have many people who will say, ‘I saw you had a pickleball court and that’s what bought me to your site,’” Barbara Burch said. “We’ve taught a lot of people that have no physical ability at all.” Pickleball players in the US are concentrated on the coasts, with more than 1 million from Florida to Washington, D.C., and more than 750,000 players on the West Coast, according to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association report. But tournaments happen all across the country, including one in Sacramento, California, at the end of September that offers a $40,000 prize. That means travelers could be looking for a pickleball-friendly place to stay while competing, or to stay in shape while on vacation. Saint George, Utah, has the most pickleball-related rental listings in the US, with more than 100, followed by the Florida cities of St. Petersburg, Panama City Beach and Naples, according to AirDNA. Like Lake Tahoe, and Joshua Tree, Arizona saw a boom in the popularity of short-term rentals during the pandemic, along with a hot housing market. The number of short-term listings in Phoenix increased 46% as of August compared with last year, according to AirDNA. While many people flocked to the sunny, dry destinations as an ideal place to weather the pandemic and work from home, not everyone wants to just lounge by the pool after a day of video calls or while on a family trip. “If you go to a place like Arizona you’re gonna lay at the pool,” said Sarah Bradford, a former vacation rental manager and self-described pickleball fanatic. “A family is tired of playing at the pool after an hour. You need activities; you’re on vacation.”.....»»

Category: topSource: time4 hr. 49 min. ago Related News

Friday links: a complex reality

MarketsNo matter how you measure it, 2022 is one of the worst years for bonds in history. (nytimes.com)Year-to-date, the Renaissance IPO ETF is down almost 50%. (institutionalinvestor.com)Options trading is booming. (wsj.com)StrategyOn the dangers of buying crashing growth stocks. (theirrelevantinvestor.com)A proper asset allocation is a precondition to avoid market-related panic. (rogersplanning.blogspot.com)Joe Wiggins, "Financial markets are about the decisions made by other people." (behaviouralinvestment.com)Venture capitalWhat's the relationship between gambling and (venture) investing? (medium.com)In Silicon Valley, investing in your friend's startup is the currency of the realm. (bloomberg.com)Chamath Palihapitiya is raising outside capital. (axios.com)Fund managementWhy investors should consider carving out their China exposure. (linkedin.com)ESG's growth bias has hurt returns in 2022. (morningstar.com)EconomyThe August PCE price index increased 6.2% year-over-year. (calculatedriskblog.com)The U.S. rental housing market is rapidly cooling off. (realpage.com)Companies are still hiring even though there are signs of economic weakness. (wsj.com)Earlier on Abnormal ReturnsPodcast links: boosting downloads. (abnormalreturns.com)What you missed in our Thursday linkfest. (abnormalreturns.com)Longform links: trusting your instincts. (abnormalreturns.com)Are you a financial adviser looking for some out-of-the-box thinking? Then check out our weekly e-mail newsletter. (newsletter.abnormalreturns.com)Mixed mediaHow Netflix ($NFLX) is cutting content costs. (variety.com)Add Genesis to the list of bands selling their song catalog to investors. (wsj.com)The Spotify ($SPOT) app is getting unwieldy. (theverge.com).....»»

Category: blogSource: abnormalreturns5 hr. 33 min. ago Related News

Remote Antarctic research stations plagued by widespread sexual harassment, with women having to work alongside their abusers for weeks, Australian report finds

The report on Australian stations describes a toxic culture of unwelcome requests for sex, pornographic materials being displayed, and period shaming. An aerial view of Australia's Casey station in Antarctica on January 17, 2008.Angela Wylie/The AGE/Fairfax Media via Getty Images via Getty Images Women working in Australian Antarctic research stations are plagued by sexual harassment, a report found.  The report describes unwanted advances, homophobia, prominently displayed pornography, and period shaming.  US stations are also rife with sexual harassment, an earlier report found.  Sexual harassment and homophobia are plaguing remote Australian Antarctic research stations, a new report found. The report, commissioned by the Australian Antarctic Division, was circulated among staff on Thursday per the Australian broadcaster ABC News.It describes a toxic environment of uninvited physical contact and unwelcome requests for sex. The predatory culture included the display of pornographic and offensive material on site and sex-based insults or taunts, per the report.Women reported having to "go to great lengths to make their menstruation invisible," and a voucher-by-request system that means women needed to "go through a gatekeeper to access free menstrual products," per the report.Homophobia is also rife, per the report, creating a toxic environment. Meredith Nash, an Associate Professor in Sociology of the University of Tasmania who led the report, told ABC News women "have to work in the field with their abusers for weeks at a time because they simply can't leave," Nash told ABC."Or, because of the power dynamics, they are not in a position to make a complaint or get support immediately as they would do back home," she said."I was actually gobsmacked to read some of the reports here talking about pornographic material up on the walls," Australia Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek told ABC News."I hope the report will be a catalyst for further change," she said.In a statement to staff, Australian Antarctic Division director Kim Ellis said he was "deeply concerned" by the report, per ABC News. "I think this lets the light in and gives us real authority to make change in the organization," he told ABC News.Women were told to carry hammers for protectionIt is the latest in a series of damning documents describing a toxic culture that puts women in danger in the remote location, including among US research stations. The issue was first brought to prominence in 2017 by news outlet Science with an investigation describing allegations of bullying from then assistant professor David Marchant.Jane Willenbring, then a 22-year-old graduate student at Boston University, described being pelted with rocks while urinating in the field by Marchant during US Antarctic field research in 1999 and 2000, being called a "slut" and a "whore," and being asked to sleep with Marchant's brother. After she reached tenure, Willenbring revealed the allegations and called for an investigation. Marchant was fired in 2019, and a glacier carrying his name was renamed.Though the events took place more than 20 years ago, a recent report from National Science Foundation published in June this year shows that only a little progress has been made since then, Nash said in a blog post published September 6. Seventy-two percent of women surveyed from the United States Antarctic Program said sexual harassment was a problem, per the report. In de-identified quotes, women describe being warned against attending parties at the McMurdo station, carrying hammers for protection, and men drunkenly following them to their rooms and intimidating them."Every woman I knew down there had an assault or harassment experience that had occurred on the ice," said one interviewee.The report also describes women feeling intimidated by human resources when bringing allegations and a widespread belief that they would be "blackballed" if they reported assault.Talking about the Australian report, Nash said that extent of the problem is such that it may be "unethical" to send women to Antarctica in these conditions. "I think on some level, it is unethical for us to continue trying to encourage women to enter a male-dominated field if we are not confident that organizations can keep them safe," she told ABC News.  Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nyt10 hr. 5 min. ago Related News

Putin is facing a major humiliation as Ukrainian forces encircle a key city in territory Russia has just annexed

As Putin announced the annexation of four regions, Ukrainian forces have reportedly encircled Russian-held Lyman, a strategic base in the Donbas. An Ukrainian soldier in the frontline city of Lyman, Donetsk region, Ukraine April 28, 2022Jorge Silva/Reuters/file photo A strategic occupied city in eastern Ukraine is on the brink of being retaken by Ukrainian troops, reports say.  News of the advance in Lyman comes on the day Putin declared the annexation of the Donetsk region. If Putin loses newly-declared "Russian" territory, it'll be a major humiliation, one expert told Insider.  Ukrainian forces have almost completely encircled a key city and could retake it, just as President Vladimir Putin has declared the region part of the Russian motherland, according to multiple reports. The strategic eastern city of Lyman, in the Donetsk region, was almost completely surrounded as of around 1.30 p.m. local time Friday, Ser hiy Cherevaty, spokesperson for Ukraine's army in the east, told Ukrainian news outlet Hromadske. Almost all logistical routes are under Ukrainian control, he said. That assessment was echoed by the Institute for the Study of War, which said that as of early Friday, local time, the Ukrainians had cut off Russian forces in the city and the surrounding area from critical ground lines of communication. The ISW said that it is "highly unlikely" that any new Russian forces would be able to bolster the troops already there.Lyman was overrun by Russian forces in late May, as The Guardian reported at the time. It's a crucial city for Putin's planned advance in the Donbas, which comprises the regions of Donetsk and Luhansk. Lyman serves as a logistics and supply hub for Putin's operations in the region, according to Reuters. The military developments come as Putin declared both regions Russian territory, based on referendums widely dismissed as a sham. Such a reversal on territory he has just declared Russian would make him "look stupid," said security and defense expert Prof. Michael Clarke of the University of Exeter.The loss would play badly with Putin's own hawkish critics, such as Igor Girkin, the former commander who now runs a far-right military blog, he said."They'll say: 'Well look, you've declared these to be Russian territory, so now you're now losing bits of Mother Russia,'" Clarke told Insider. One of Putin's puppets in the region confirmed the presence of Ukrainian troops around the city in a somewhat crestfallen statement on Telegram at around noon local time.Dennis Pushilin served as leader of the Donetsk People's Republic, the region's breakaway separatist state not recognized by most of the West or Ukraine. He wrote that the Ukrainian army "is trying with all its might to somehow overshadow this historical event for us."At the moment, Krasny Liman is in a semicircle," he added, using a Russian term for the city. Michael Kofman, a Russia expert at CNA, wrote in a tweet: "Russia's annexation announcement stands in sharp contrast to the military reality on the ground, as Russian forces face envelopment at Lyman."—Michael Kofman (@KofmanMichael) September 30, 2022 The potential recapture of Lyman puts a major brake on Putin's ability to advance, or even hold, much of the Donbas, Clarke told Insider. Lyman was to serve as the jumping-off point for Putin's plan to take two other cities, Slovyansk and Kramatorsk, which would have sealed his control of the Donbas region, Clarke told Insider.  But Lyman's likely loss puts that plan "out of the window," he said. "It just can't be done this side of the winter."A second reason Lyman's recapture would be such a strategic blow is that it opens up a strategic path to completely cutting off Russia's north-to-south supply routes, Clarke said.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nyt10 hr. 5 min. ago Related News

Google to Shut Down Stadia 

Google has announced it is shutting down its cloud gaming service Stadia, just three years after its launch.  The service was touted as a “Netflix for games” and allowed gamers to stream… The post Google to Shut Down Stadia  appeared first on Red Herring. Google has announced it is shutting down its cloud gaming service Stadia, just three years after its launch.  The service was touted as a “Netflix for games” and allowed gamers to stream games online without owning expensive hardware like consoles. But after suffering from “a lack of traction” with gamers, the service will come to and end in January next year.  Google has said it will issue refunds to anyone who had purchased a Stadia controller or any games and add-on content.  “A few years ago, we also launched a consumer gaming service, Stadia,” Stadia vice president and GM Phil Harrison wrote in a blog post. “And while Stadia’s approach to streaming games for consumers was built on a strong technology foundation, it hasn’t gained the traction with users that we expected so we’ve made the difficult decision to begin winding down our Stadia streaming service.”  Employees working on the service will be redistributed to other parts of the company, Google said.  Cloud gaming services have long been considered the future of the industry, as it allows more players to access games without spending huge amounts of money on either consoles or PCs. But Stadia appeared to be doomed from the start, as it received a lukewarm response from gamers, amid concerns over stuttering games.  It now appears that Google has abandoned its plans to muscle in on the videogame industry, which is dominated by the likes of Microsoft and Sony. Other cloud gaming services remain, such as Nvidia’s GeForce Now cloud platform. Microsoft has invested heavily in the technology and AT&T has also explored the possibility of launching a service. Google’s failure has not deterred other companies from attempting to break into the video game industry. This week Netflix announced it was setting up its own video game studio in Finland, after previously buying a handful of smaller gaming companies.  The post Google to Shut Down Stadia  appeared first on Red Herring......»»

Category: topSource: redherring14 hr. 17 min. ago Related News

This Thanksgiving, Supplies Of Turkey, Eggs, & Butter Will Be Extremely Tight In The US

This Thanksgiving, Supplies Of Turkey, Eggs, & Butter Will Be Extremely Tight In The US Authored by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog, If you love to cook, this upcoming Thanksgiving may be a real challenge for you.  Thanks to a resurgence of the bird flu, supplies of turkey are getting tighter and tighter.  Sadly, the same thing is true for eggs.  And as you will see below, reduced milk production is sending the price of butter into the stratosphere.  Thanks to soaring prices, a traditional Thanksgiving dinner will be out of reach for millions of American families this year, and that is extremely unfortunate.  Of course all of this is happening in the context of a horrific global food crisis that is getting worse with each passing day.  Yes, things are bad now, but they will be significantly worse this time next year. The bird flu pandemic that has killed tens of millions of our chickens and turkeys was supposed to go away during the hot summer months, but that didn’t happen.  And now that the weather is starting to get colder again, there has been a resurgence of the bird flu and this is “devastating egg and turkey operations in the heartland of the country”… Turkeys are selling for record high prices ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday as a resurgence of bird flu wipes out supplies across the US. Avian influenza is devastating egg and turkey operations in the heartland of the country. If just one bird gets it, the entire flock is culled in order to stop the spread. Millions of hens and turkeys have been killed in recent weeks. As a result, prices for turkey hens are nearly 30% higher than a year ago and 80% above pre-pandemic costs. Just as concerning are inventories of whole turkeys, which are the lowest going into the US winter holiday season since 2006. That means there will be little relief from inflation for Thanksgiving dinner. In the months ahead, we could see tens of millions more chickens and turkeys get wiped out. Egg prices have already tripled in 2022 and the price of turkey meat is up 60 percent.  Unfortunately, this is likely just the beginning… Turkey hens are $1.82 a pound this week, according to Urner Barry, compared to $1.42 last year and $1.01 before the pandemic. Meanwhile, wholesale egg prices are at $3.62 a dozen as of Wednesday, the highest ever, up from a previous record of $3.45 a dozen set earlier this year, said John Brunnquell, chief executive officer of Egg Innovations, one of the biggest US producers of free-range eggs. Consumers have seen prices for eggs at grocery stores triple this year, while turkey meat rose a record-setting 60%, according to a Cobank report. Meanwhile, supplies of butter are steadily getting tighter as well… Lower milk production on U.S. dairy farms and labor shortages for processing plants have weighed on butter output for months, leaving the amount of butter in U.S. cold storage facilities at the end of July the lowest since 2017, according to the Agriculture Department. Tight supplies have sent butter prices soaring at U.S. supermarkets, surpassing most other foods in the past year. U.S. grocery prices in August rose 13.5% during the past 12 months, the largest annual increase since 1979, according to the Labor Department. Butter outstripped those gains, rising 24.6% over the same period. The trends that are driving up the price of butter aren’t going away any time soon, and so we are being warned to brace ourselves for “elevated” prices for the foreseeable future… The forces at work in butter highlight the challenge of curtailing inflation. Economic pressures fueling high prices for livestock feed, labor shortages and other factors could persist, keeping prices for the kitchen staple elevated longer term. To me, slathering a piece of warm bread with a huge chunk of butter is one of the best things about Thanksgiving. And most of us will continue to buy butter no matter how high it goes. But the truth is that rapidly rising food prices are forcing vast numbers of Americans to adjust their shopping habits.  Here is one example… For Carol Ehrman, cooking is a joyful experience. “I love to cook, it’s my favorite thing to do,” she said. She especially likes to cook Indian and Thai food, but stocking the spices and ingredients she needs for those dishes is no longer feasible. “When every ingredient has gone up, that adds up on the total bill,” she said. “What used to cost us $250 to $300 … is now $400.” Ehrman, 60, and her husband, 65, rely on his social security income, and the increase was stretching their budget. “We just couldn’t do that.” The global food crisis is starting to hit home for many ordinary Americans, and we need to understand that this crisis is still only in the very early chapters. David Beasley is the head of the UN World Food Program, and he is actually using the word “hell” to describe what is potentially coming in 2023… “It’s a perfect storm on top of a perfect storm,” Beasley said. “And with the fertilizer crisis we’re facing right now, with droughts, we’re facing a food pricing problem in 2022. This created havoc around the world.” “If we don’t get on top of this quickly — and I don’t mean next year, I mean this year — you will have a food availability problem in 2023,” he said. “And that’s gonna be hell.” The World Food Program keeps sounding the alarm, but very few of us in the western world seem to be taking those warnings very seriously. People are literally dropping dead from starvation in some areas of the globe right now, and a new report that the WFP just released says that there are 19 “hotspots” where we could see a “huge loss of life” between October and January… World Food Programme (WFP) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) are out with a new report outlining countries that “are either already starving or on the brink of disaster.” WFP and FAO found 19 hunger hotspots worldwide, with most countries in Africa, the Middle East, and even some in Central America. They call for urgent humanitarian action between October 2022 and January 2023 to avoid “huge loss of life.” Afghanistan, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria, Yemen, and Haiti are labeled “hotspots of highest concern,” facing catastrophic hunger levels. The sort of famines that we were warned about are already starting to happen right in front of our eyes, but most people simply will not care as long as they are not going hungry themselves. What those people do not realize is that this global food crisis is going to continue to spread. As supplies of food get tighter and tighter, prices will continue to soar and shortages will become more common. We truly are in unprecedented territory, and the pain that is ahead will greatly shock all of the lemmings that just kept assuming that everything would work out just fine somehow. *  *  * It is finally here! Michael’s new book entitled “7 Year Apocalypse” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon. Tyler Durden Thu, 09/29/2022 - 21:40.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedge22 hr. 33 min. ago Related News

Thursday links: jumping ship

StrategyIt's been a long time since you could say bonds were competition for stocks. (ritholtz.com)Mitigating risk in your portfolio always comes with a trade-off. (blog.validea.com)International stocksWhy you shouldn't hedge the currency exposure of international stocks. (monevator.com)This week shows why you need to mitigate your home country bias. (ft.com)FinanceA profile of startup investment research provider Tegus. (notboring.co)The best VCs know when to buy and when to sell. (hunterwalk.com)Fund managementWhy cheap ETFs are tough competition for direct indexing. (investmentnews.com)Add muni bond ETFs to the near-0% expense ratio club. (thinkadvisor.com)The Hipgnosis Songs Fund is now trading at a discount to NAV. (ft.com)EconomyWeekly initial unemployment claims continue to trend lower. (bonddad.blogspot.com)Small employers are getting creative to hire new workers. (wsj.com)Earlier on Abnormal ReturnsLongform links: trusting your instincts. (abnormalreturns.com)What you missed in our Wednesday linkfest. (abnormalreturns.com)Personal finance links: a great irony. (abnormalreturns.com)Are you a financial adviser looking for some out-of-the-box thinking? Then check out our weekly e-mail newsletter. (newsletter.abnormalreturns.com)Mixed mediaScott Galloway talks about the future of cities with Dror Poleg. (drorpoleg.com)Cities want to push the transition of office buildings to housing. (axios.com).....»»

Category: blogSource: abnormalreturnsSep 29th, 2022Related News

Meet MacKenzie Scott, the philanthropist determined to give away her fortune to charity, who was married to Jeff Bezos, and just filed for divorce from her second husband

MacKenzie Scott has made it her mission to give away billions. The novelist and ex-wife of Jeff Bezos just filed for divorce from her second husband. MacKenzie Scott is an award-winning novelist.Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images Philanthropist MacKenzie Scott and her second husband, Dan Jewett, filed for divorce.  She is an award-winning novelist, who's had literary ambitions since she was 6 years old. Scott was also previously married to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos.  When Jeff Bezos told his then-wife MacKenzie Scott about his idea for a new company, she was immediately on board.She traveled with her husband to Seattle, where she worked for the fledgling Amazon as an accountant. The move was a bit of a departure for the Princeton grad, who had long dreamed of becoming a writer. But she was eager to support her husband."To me, watching your spouse, somebody that you love, have an adventure — what is better than that?" Scott said during an interview with CBS.Since the early days of Amazon, Scott has gone on to pursue her literary dreams, publishing two novels, "The Testing of Luther Albright" in 2005 and "Traps" in 2013. The couple announced their plans to divorce in January 2019, and declared that they had finalized the terms of their divorce on April 4, 2019. In a tweet, Scott explained that she would be passing on "all of my interests in the Washington Post and Blue Origin, and 75% of our Amazon stock plus voting control of my shares to support his continued contributions with the teams of those incredible companies." The divorce left her with a 3% stake in Amazon.In 2021, Scott remarried, tying the knot with school teacher Dan Jewett. In September 2022, the couple filed for divorce. Today, Scott has a net worth of $27.8 billion, as per the Bloomberg's Billionaires Index. She has extensively pursued philanthropic efforts, and vowed to give away her fortune.Here's a look at the career of award-winning novelist and philanthropist:Scott grew up in San Francisco. She told Vogue she was a shy child who would often stay in her bedroom writing "elaborate stories."A stock image of someone writing a letter.iStock/Getty ImagesSource: VogueShe authored her first book — "The Book Worm" — at the age of 6. The handwritten, 142-page novel was later lost in a flood, according to her Amazon author bio.Astrakan Images/Getty ImagesSource: AmazonFor high school, Scott attended Hotchkiss, a Connecticut boarding school, then went on to Princeton to study fiction with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Toni Morrison.People walk through the Princeton University campus in Princeton, N.J., Thursday, April 5, 2018.AP Photo/Seth WenigSource: VogueMorrison told Vogue that Scott was "one of the best students I've ever had in my creative-writing classes ... really one of the best."FILE - In this Nov. 25, 2005 file photo, author Toni Morrison listens to Mexicos Carlos Monsivais during the Julio Cortazar professorship conference at the Guadalajara's University in Guadalajara City, Mexico. The Nobel Prize-winning author has died. Publisher Alfred A. Knopf says Morrison died Monday, Aug. 5, 2019 at Montefiore Medical Center in New York. She was 88.AP Photo/Guillermo AriasSource: VogueDuring college, Scott also worked as a dishwasher, waitress, clothing salesperson, deli cashier, restaurant hostess, library monitor, data entry clerk, tutor, nanny, and research assistant to Toni Morrison, according to her Amazon bio.Mariah Tauger/Los Angeles Times via Getty ImagesSource: VogueAfter graduation, Scott took a job "to pay the bills while she wrote," according to Vogue. She went to work as a research associate for investment management firm D.E. Shaw.Erin Cadigan/ShutterstockSource: Business Insider, Forbes, VogueHer future husband and fellow Princeton grad Jeff Bezos, who was one of the firm's vice presidents at the time, was the first person to interview her. Later on, she asked him out to lunch.Mackenzie Scott and Jeff Bezos back in 2018.Mike Coppola/VF18/Getty Images for VFSource: Business Insider, Forbes, VogueThey became engaged three months later, and wed three months after that. The following year, in 1994, the couple quit their jobs and traveled to Seattle to found Amazon.Seattle's skyline.David Ryder/Getty Images)Source: Business Insider, CBS This MorningScott became an accountant for her then-husband's new company and was one of Amazon's earliest employees.Mackenzie Scott and Jeff Bezos in 2017.Jerod Harris/Getty ImagesSource: Business Insider, CBS This MorningBezos told Vogue he would sometimes wake up during vacations to find his then-wife working on her first novel in hotel bathrooms. It ultimately took Scott 10 years to write and publish "The Testing of Luther Albright."Jeff Bezos.Samir Hussein/WireImageSource: VogueScott told Vogue her growing family took precedence over her writing. "After the third child, I knew I couldn't be the kind of parent I wanted to be and continue writing. Those years were just too busy."MacKenzie Scott and Jeff Bezos.Chip Somodevilla/Getty ImagesSource: VogueScott's first novel won an American Book Award in 2005. For her second novel, "Traps," she decided to motivate herself by not sharing her incomplete work with her then-husband.Jeff Bezos.aul Ellis - Pool/Getty ImagesSource: Heavy.com, VogueShe also told Vogue the strategy was a difficult one, because Bezos was her "best reader." He'd often drop other plans to read and carefully review manuscripts of her first novel.Jeff Bezos.Emma McIntyre/Getty ImagesSource: VogueTo eliminate any distractions, Scott would work in her own small apartment. There, she'd write until it was time to pick the kids up from school.Jeff Bezos and MacKenzie Scott.Paul Mounce/Corbis via Getty ImagesSource: Vogue"The sooner I finished, the sooner I could share it with him and talk about these characters who had been taking up so much space in my head," Scott told Vogue. "By the last three months, they were so real and important to me, I could start crying just thinking about them while driving to pick up the kids from school."MacKenzie Scott and Jeff Bezos.Kevork Djansezian/Getty ImagesSource: Heavy.com, VogueOnce "Traps" was published in 2013, Scott didn't sign on for Amazon's new publishing imprint. "We are calling her the fish that got away," Jeff told Vogue.Jeff Bezos.Dave J Hogan/Dave J. Hogan/Getty ImagesSource: Heavy.com, VogueScott strived to write daily to be "engaged with the story." "I have to keep up these pretend people in order for them to have space in my life," she told Seattle Met. "Basically, it works best for me to get up early and write a little bit before I talk to anybody, so I'll usually write in two chunks: one before the kids get up — and then I'll have my morning with them — and then while they're at school I'll write some more."Jeff Bezos and MacKenzie Scott.MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty ImagesSource: Seattle MetIn a post on publisher Weidenfeld and Nicolson's blog, Scott said of publishing "Traps": "I have no specific hopes about what anyone might think or feel reading 'Traps' except that they have fun, and that it feels real and powerful enough to them to affect how they see their own lives a little bit."MacKenzie Scott and Jeff Bezos.Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Moet & ChandonSource: Weidenfeld and Nicolson"One of my favorite things about books is the collaboration between the writer's imagination and each reader's personal experience," she wrote. She said she could pick up a book she'd read 10 years before and "in many ways it will feel like a different story to me because my own struggles and preoccupations focus my attention on different things."MacKenzie Scott and Jeff Bezos.Stephen Lovekin/FilmMagic/Getty ImagesSource: Weidenfeld and NicolsonThe writer was thrust into the news in 2019, due to her highly publicized divorce from the Amazon founder.Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagicSource: Business InsiderOn April 4, 2019, she announced that she would grant her ex-husband 75% of their jointly owned Amazon stock, leaving her with an estimated $35.7 billion stake.Amazon packages at a Baltimore facility.REUTERS/Clodagh KilcoyneSource: Business InsiderThat kind of money would still leave Scott as, according to different publications, either the third- or fourth-richest woman on the planet.MacKenzie Scott.Greg Doherty/Patrick McMullan via Getty ImagesSource: Business InsiderSince divorcing Bezos, Scott married a teacher named Dan Jewett in 2021, but the couple filed for divorce in September 2022.MacKenzie Scott.Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Amazon StudiosSource: InsiderRead the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytSep 29th, 2022Related News

I"m a 62-year-old Instagram influencer who also owns a PR firm. I worried what my clients would think, but being on social media has actually helped my career.

@SilverDisobedience's Dian Griesel bucks the trend of having to be young to be successful online. It's landed her five-figure deals and new PR clients. Dian Griesel.Courtesy of Dian Griesel Dian Griesel runs her own PR firm, models, and is an online-content creator. She got her start by networking with people while on commercial sets. She now has 190,000 Instagram followers and speaks to the 50-and-up crowd. This as-told-to essay is based on a conversation with Dian Griesel, a 62-year-old public-relations and crisis-management executive from New York, who runs the Instagram account @SilverDisobedience. Her income has been verified by Insider with documentation. The following has been edited for length and clarity.About six years ago, Old Navy cast our son in one of its commercials. I started talking to this young girl who was taking pictures as he was auditioning, and she called me about three days later with an opportunity. I'd never done anything like that, but I told her to go ahead and submit me for a casting call. I got the commercial — it was for TJ Maxx — and within the next year, she booked me for about 10 national spots with brands like SunTrust Bank — now known as Truist — Brighthouse Financial, and Uber.Coming from the public-relations world, I found being on set fascinating, and I started keeping track of everyone's names and numbers, what each person was doing, their Facebook pages, everything. Because I'd made these connections, I got a call from one of the makeup artists, who told me that the talent agency Wilhelmina was looking for a silver-haired model. I got signed in spring 2017. When I got my contract, my agent told me, "You're going to need to post on Instagram."For 25 years, I've owned a public-relations firm. We work with companies in highly regulated industries like healthcare, biotech, pharma, and national defense on all kinds of messaging and crisis management. I was afraid my clients were going to think I was having a midlife crisis — why was I posting selfies on Instagram all of a sudden? I was mortified and worried about whether anyone would take me seriously. I immediately put in my Wilhelmina contract that I would wear no lingerie, no bathing suits, nothing that I could be really humiliated with sitting there looking at someone across the table.The name of my account, "Silver Disobedience," was a play on Martin Luther King Jr.'s "civil disobedience." I wanted to respectfully start a conversation that acknowledged that any age in life is relevant. My first audience on my Instagram account was the 48-and-up crowd, but I eventually had mothers and grandmothers tell me they shared it with their teenagers and grandchildren. I now have 190,000 followers on Instagram and 57,000 followers on Facebook.I found myself thinking, 'If I have to post on Instagram, let me write'Dian Griesel.Courtesy of Dian GrieselI decided to use the pictures as placeholders and write about what life's like when you get older — and it took off. My longer posts caught Facebook's attention, and they assigned a team of people to me who were calling me every week to help me understand how to keep growing organically. I also do polls, and I can get 8,000 to 10,000 people to respond to one within 24 hours. Three years ago, I got a call from someone at Lancôme Paris who wanted to talk about having me come to Paris for a campaign. I thought it was one of my brothers pranking me, so I told them I wouldn't talk to them unless I could call them back. But sure enough, Lancôme flew me to Paris five days later, and I did a campaign for Teint Idole. It was with some amazing women, and I couldn't believe they included me. Lancôme called back three weeks later and asked to bring me onto a perfume campaign. They used that campaign to launch their first store in Paris. It was a dream. In addition to my fees, which were in the five figures, they paid for all the travel. I also did a campaign with T-Mobile, whom I love. One day, I got an email asking if I'd be interested in doing some posts about their 55-plus offer. That partnership was purely social-media posting. It reached millions — one post alone got more than 1.4 million views. In return, they paid me five figures, I got a great phone, and they sent my daughter and me to a Justin Bieber concert. I'm very picky about whom I work with For my first three years, I could have done supplements, life insurance — all the things that people stereotypically think people 50 and older need and want to hear about. The 50-and-older audience is very misunderstood: They could be pushing a baby carriage for their own child as well as their grandchild, or they could be caring for not just themselves and their children, but their parents as well. It's such a full circle-of-life audience — they're consumers in every single vertical possible.Being on social media has also generated work for me as an advisor to companies looking to understand the 50-and-up demographic. One of the first ones was Mars when the company was launching a supplement made out of a particular type of cocoa that was proven to enhance brain health. My PR team and I worked with the company for a little over a year and a half.I've been self-employed my whole life, and I've never felt like I was workingI get up early, by 6 or 6:15 a.m. After drinking a bunch of water, I look at the headlines of the day across a whole spectrum of business and news websites to see if there's anything that's going to impact our PR clients. I work on a blog post in the morning if I haven't set it up the night before. Our son is off to college this fall, and our daughter is 22 and already out of the house, but in previous years, I would have been getting everybody out the door to school. Then my day starts with clients. I could be going through paperwork, I could have meetings, I could be on a Zoom call, or on set for a modeling shoot. Also, I'm launching a new company in September, Creative Content Loft, to get smaller influencers together for focus groups on brands, so I might be working on that.If I'm on set, that's an eight- or 10-hour day. When I'm in the office, I walk on a treadmill desk while I work, or use a rebounder — that's how I take most of my conference calls. At night, I try to connect with my husband and have some time with him. My clients' reactions to me being online has shocked me: they love it When people say business isn't personal, I disagree with that. There's the side that you have to get the job done, yes, that's business. But how we speak to each other, how we respect each other, how we encourage each other — that's very personal. A lot of my business community has reached out and said, "I read you every day, you start my mood. I never knew you had this side of you. I tell my employees to read you." Interestingly, it's been an incredible source of business for our public-relations firm because companies see the engagement with this community. On a bad day, an article for me would have an engagement rate of 10%, and we have engagement rates as high as 115%, so the content is really resonating. It's developed a synergy with my company.If you want to be a successful content creator, you first need to determine what niche you want to pursueIf you don't really love what you're posting about, you'll quit long before you become successful, or you just won't be compelling enough to inspire a following.Then, be consistent. There's plenty of room for new creatives, but you have to post consistently, whether that's daily, twice a day, or once a week, at a set time. You'll choose your timing based on the medium — for example, if you're going to primarily stick to Instagram, you may want to post daily, but if you're a podcast creator, you may upload weekly. Finally, be responsive. The "social" in social media stands for creating and participating in a conversation. Respond to the comments you get on your posts.Creating and growing an engaged community is a labor of love. Be prepared for it to be a long haul. If you view this as a fun hobby or side hustle, one day you may be able to develop a career as a creative influencer. In the meantime, don't quit your day job — do it all. I think online illusions of instant celebrity and fame leave too many people with the wrong idea, thinking they'll be rolling in the Benjamins right away. If you're really good at what you're doing, you'll ultimately be able to hire others to help you where you need it.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: nytSep 29th, 2022Related News

Loonshots And Collapse

Loonshots And Collapse Authored by Charles Hugh Smith via OfTwoMinds blog, The momentum of franchise success and centralization of power are fatal... Loonshots are like moonshots, only crazier and trickier to commercialize. Author Safi Bahcall titled his book on how to nurture change-the-world innovations Loonshots: How to Nurture the Crazy Ideas That Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries. But as Bahcall persuasively argues, loonshot innovations aren't enough. You also need to nurture franchises that commercialize the innovations into products and services that pay the bills and fund the search for loonshot. Bahcall identifies two kinds of loonshots: product and system. One of his examples: the 747 Jumbojet was a product innovation, the SABRE airline reservation software was a system innovation. Both are essential. The book has much to say about structuring organizations--corporations and agencies--to encourage the fragile emergence of loonshots and commercialize them into change-the-world products and services. Organizations that excel at fostering innovations often fail to capitalize on their discoveries, and Bahcall identifies two sources of this failure: the supreme leader who leads the organization astray with hubristic self-confidence, and the organization lacking managers with the means to push the innovation into production / adoption. Near the end of the book, Bahcall explores a topic that has engaged historians for decades: why didn't China capitalize on its vast trove of change-the-world innovations? Why didn't China leverage its monumental technological advantages from 1500 to 1800 to dominate the world? This has long been of interest to me, and I found the book The Man Who Loved China: The Fantastic Story of the Eccentric Scientist Who Unlocked the Mysteries of the Middle Kingdom helpful in providing context. It's the story of Joseph Needham and Lu Gwei-djen's assembly of the multi-volume Science and Civilisation in China. Setting aside the many specifics of China's culture and history, we can identify general principles for this systemic failure to capitalize on innovation within organizations. These principles are scale-invariant, meaning they operate at the level of small enterprises, corporations and nations. When the organization's franchises are successful, there's little selective pressure to gamble on innovations. Scaling innovations up (i.e. commercializing to ubiquity) is tricky and failures are the norm. Taking chances on new ideas and products is risky. As the Loonshots book explains, there are false start failures where the initial product is tossed aside as a failure but the problems were fixable. When the franchise of an empire or movie studio is running smoothly, the risks of investing in loonshots are daunting. The inevitable failures will not only hurt the bottom line, sucking up capital, they are risky for managers promoting the innovations. Even worse, the innovation might morph into a threat to the core franchise and thus the organization's dominance and leaders. Some folks in the lab invent digital cameras while the franchise's dominance and revenues are based on selling film--hmm, what to do? How about burying the innovation as needlessly risky? The greater the centralization, the stronger the risk aversion and the greater the odds of the supreme leader making a catastrophic error of judgement. As the supreme leader moves from success to success, critics are dismissed as naysayers and the inner circle fears being cashiered / sent to Siberia, so over time the supreme leader is surrounded by sycophants and toadies who serve their own ambitions by praising the supreme leader's every move and elevated self-glorification. In this self-reinforcing feedback loop, the decay of the core franchise is rationalized, ignored or discounted. Bad news is unwelcome, and anyone who gives voice to the news risks elimination from the leadership pool. All the system incentives favor downplaying the decay of the franchise or cloaking it with massaged statistics. In this sealed echo-chamber, the supreme leader coasts along, confident everything is peachy while the empire, army, trade and the currency all slide toward collapse. The worse it gets, the greater the danger for those who dare to reveal the true measure of the decline. Better to game the numbers and announce you met your quota / sales number. In other words, the momentum of franchise success and centralization of power are fatal. When you're making steady profits from selling typewriters, why invest in some crazy homebrew computer thingy that might sink the company if it fails and kill typewriter sales if it takes off? Since our division lives and dies on typewriter sales, who is dumb enough to support some innovation that has the potential to destroy everything we've built and everything that enables our success? And what organizations dominate the planet? Hyper-centralized franchises, states and corporations alike. The selective pressure favors protecting the franchise from innovation, because innovation could upset the entire apple cart. So centralized organizations only support innovations that increase the power of centralized authority. But that's not how innovation works. As the franchise decays and the supreme leaders start believing their own PR and making catastrophically misguided decisions in an echo-chamber of cheering toadies, the whole system slips into a non-linear dynamic that ends in a dramatic phase change, the collapse of the franchise and all those who clung to it as no-risk and permanent. Stifle decentralization and dissent and you stifle innovation. With potentially threatening loonshots safely buried, the system has only one pathway: decay and collapse. *  *  * My new book is now available at a 20% discount ($7.95 ebook) 15% discount ($17 print) this week: Self-Reliance in the 21st Century. Tyler Durden Thu, 09/29/2022 - 06:30.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytSep 29th, 2022Related News

Thousands of cruise ship passengers are being forced to spend extra days at sea after 3 Florida ports closed due to Hurricane Ian

Unable to disembark passengers on schedule, the ships are spending more time at sea visiting extra destinations. At least five cruise ships were unable to return to their home ports in Florida.Silversea Cruises Florida-based cruise ships are extending their trips after Hurricane Ian forced three ports to close. The cruise ships are spending more time at sea visiting extra destinations. Around five ships and 20,000 passengers are affected, per The Points Guy. Florida-based cruise ships are extending their schedules after Hurricane Ian forced three ports to close in the state.Three major ports in the state — Port Tampa Bay, Jacksonville Port Authority, and Port Canaveral — have temporarily closed, according to statements posted on their Twitter accounts.  Hurricane Ian made landfall on Wednesday as a Category 4 hurricane before weakening to a Category 1 storm.The Points Guy reported that the closures meant at least five cruise ships were unable to return to their home ports in Florida.Unable to disembark passengers on schedule, the cruise ships are spending more time at sea and visiting extra destinations. Carnival Cruise Line announced it had extended two of its cruises that were due to dock in Florida on September 29.The Carnival Paradise extended a visit to Cozumel, Mexico, by an extra night. Meanwhile, the Carnival Elation added a visit to Freeport, Bahamas, to avoid the storm. The company said that both cruises were likely to be extended until the storm passes and the ports reopen.Carnival Cruise Line did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment made outside normal working hours.Royal Caribbean's Mariner of the Seas, Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Getaway, and MSC Cruises' MSC Divina are also being extended, according to the Points Guy. All three cruise ships were due to return to Port Canaveral on Thursday morning but will now not return before Friday morning, the travel blog reported.Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line have been contacted by Insider but did not immediately respond. MSC Cruises could not be reached for comment.The changes mean that around 20,000 passengers are getting a mandatory extension to their trip, per the Points Guy.The hurricane is affecting other sectors of Florida's tourist industry. Walt Disney World and Universal have both closed resort parks in the state for at least 2 days as Hurricane Ian passes through.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: nytSep 29th, 2022Related News

A China-based operation sought to sway the US midterms — but failed because the propaganda workers took long lunches and worked 9 to 5. Meta shut it down anyway.

The network, which Meta described as "small," originated in China and ran across multiple platforms including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Meta has shut two China and Russia-run influence networks.Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters Meta took down a China-based network which sought to influence the US midterms. It was the first Chinese network Meta shut, which targeted US domestic politics before the midterms. The propaganda operation was largely ineffective, as it mostly posted when Americans were sleeping. Meta on Tuesday said it took down a China-based disinformation network which sought to influence the US midterms, although it was largely ineffective due to the time difference between the two countries and the propaganda workers' regular working hours.The network, which Meta described as "small" originated in China and ran across multiple social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, according to a Tuesday blogpost by Ben Nimmo, Meta's global threat intelligence lead and David Agranovich, the company's director of threat disruption.Meta did not have enough evidence to identify who was behind the China-based operation, Reuters reported, citing a company executive at a press conference on Tuesday.The network used tactics including fake accounts and political hashtags, said Meta in its report. Specifically, two clusters under the network "targeted both sides of the political spectrum in the US" in the English language.Meta showed two memes featuring President Joe Biden and Republican senator Marco Rubio as examples of what the network disseminated. The meme with a photo of Biden included the words "One year in: Nothing is built, nothing is back, nothing is better." The other meme showed a photo of Rubio and the words "$1.3 million from Russia, $3.3 million from NRA, Democracy for sale." However, the influence operation was a failure, as the US-focused clusters attracted only "minimal reactions" to their posts. This was partly because propaganda workers were working regular nine-to-five shifts in China during weekdays and took long lunches, Meta wrote. "They appear to have had a substantial lunch break, and a much lower level of posting during weekends. This meant that the operation was mostly posting when Americans were sleeping," per Meta. Some of the accounts posting the propaganda messages posted too sporadically and used bad English. Some accounts shared the same post into a few groups on one day, but then didn't post for a week. "What they did post included linguistic errors: "I can't live in an America on regression!"" per Meta.Even though the China-based influence operation didn't work, it is significant because it is the first Chinese network Meta "disrupted" which targeted US domestic politics ahead of the midterm elections, the tech company said. "Chinese influence operations that we've disrupted before typically focused on criticizing the United States to international audiences, rather than primarily targeting domestic audiences in the US," according to Meta.Meta also took down a Russia disinformation network that targeted Europe, it said in the same Tuesday blogpost. This network faked over 60 websites of real European news organizations and posted original articles supporting Russia in the war with Ukraine.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderSep 29th, 2022Related News

Charting A Course To Self-Reliance

Charting A Course To Self-Reliance Authored by Charles Hugh Smith via OfTwoMinds blog, Self-reliance in the 21st century is uniquely challenging because we've become overly dependent on globalization and financialization. As things unravel, the one surefire strategy is to chart a course for greater self-reliance. Improving self-reliance has no downside, only upside, and everyone can increase their self-reliance incrementally in small ways. Self-reliance isn't the same as self-sufficiency. Even Thoreau on Walden Pond used manufactured tools and supplies sourced from afar. The basic idea of self-reliance is to reduce our dependency on long, fragile supply chains and the hamster-wheel landfill Economy of planned obsolescence and waste is growth consumption, and increase what we can do for ourselves and those we care about. Self-reliance isn't going it alone, it's assembling trusted personal networks as a producer as well as a consumer, as a means of reducing the number of links in your personal supply chain and increasing local sources of life's essentials. Self-reliance increases as we acquire skills and capital in all its forms. Self-reliance isn't the same as money; what's truly valuable can't be bought: trust, reciprocity, integrity. Those are the foundations of self-reliance. Self-reliance in the 21st century is uniquely challenging because we've become overly dependent on globalization and financialization--not just on traditional supply chains and finance, but a near-total dependence on hyper-globalized supply chains and hyper-financialized credit-asset bubbles that are inherently unstable and unsustainable. There's no downside to becoming more self-reliant and enormous upside. If the Landfill Economy continues chewing through the planet's dwindling resources, it doesn't diminish the value of being able to do more for ourselves and those we care about. But if long, fragile supply chains break and hyper-financialization blows a gasket and sinks, the self-reliant will have a much easier time than those with minimal self-reliance. We're only powerless if we cede all power over our lives to others. Self-reliance is all about taking control of our own lives rather than relying on unsustainable global supply chains and centralized authorities to provide us with essentials. I address all this in my new book Self-Reliance in the 21st Century (96 pages). I'm offering it to my readers at a 20% discount for the Kindle edition ($7.95) and 15% discount for the print edition ($17). You can read the first chapter for free (PDF). In later chapters, I cover the mindset of self-reliance and the nuts and bolts of self-reliance. I wrote this book not as someone on the peak looking down but as someone on the trail looking up. Self-reliance is a work in progress, not a destination. I'm constantly improving my self-reliance, too, and have a long way to go. I wrote this book to offer a few pointers on charting your own course to greater self-reliance. *  *  * My new book is now available at a 20% discount ($7.95 ebook) 15% discount ($17 print) this week: Self-Reliance in the 21st Century. Tyler Durden Wed, 09/28/2022 - 19:00.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytSep 28th, 2022Related News

People are keeping a close eye on Waffle House as Hurricane Ian makes landfall — and there"s a weird reason why

Waffle House is known for staying open during many natural disasters. If a Waffle House closes, it suggests the event was bad enough to have devastating effects on the economy. Waffle House is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.AP Waffle House is known for staying open during many natural disasters. The chain's policy has provided an unofficial way for FEMA to track the severity of a natural disaster. If a Waffle House closes, it suggests the event was bad enough to potentially have devastating effects on the economy. Waffle House announced on Wednesday that it is closing 21 locations in mandatory evacuation zones in Florida in anticipation of Hurricane Ian, which has strengthened to a Category 4 storm.Historically, such closures by the company have indicated more than just locals going waffle-less: The Federal Emergency Management Agency uses it to track the severity of a natural disaster, an unofficial "Waffle House Index" that monitors potentially dangerous events.The chain, whose restaurants are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, is famous for staying open during many natural disasters. When it closes, that suggests an especially bad event that is likely to have devastating effects on the economy."If a Waffle House store is open and offering a full menu, the index is green," a 2011 article in the magazine EHS Today says. "If it is open but serving from a limited menu, it's yellow. When the location has been forced to close, the index is red."This doesn't just show FEMA how quickly a business might rebound, it also shows it how the larger community is doing."The sooner restaurants, grocery and corner stores, or banks can re-open, the sooner local economies will start generating revenue again — signaling a stronger recovery for that community," FEMA said in a blog post in 2011. "If we are open quickly after the storm broke, that means the community is coming back and we are getting back to that sense of normalcy," Pat Warner, director of PR at Waffle House, said in an interview with CNN in 2018, just before Hurricane Florence hit.  In the past, Waffle House has taken to social media to share its role in natural disaster tracking, such as announcing in September 2018 that its "Storm Center" was monitoring Hurricane Florence. The company closed 20 stores at the time.—Waffle House News (@WaffleHouseNews) September 11, 2018Waffle House has 2,100 restaurants across 25 states, most of which are in the South.Warner told CNN in 2018 that Waffle House prepares for a storm's aftermath by having resources like generators, food, and staff at the ready outside (but close to) the impacted area so that it can reopen as soon as possible. Hurricane Ian's "extremely dangerous" eyewall started to approach shore as of 12 p.m. ET on Wednesday, bringing winds of 155 mph and expected heavy rainfall of up to 24 inches for much of Florida, according to the National Hurricane Center.  Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytSep 28th, 2022Related News

Wednesday links: a crazy five years

MarketsLess than 10% of Nasdaq stocks are above their 200-day moving average. (theirrelevantinvestor.com)The Nasdaq has been outperforming the S&P 500 since June. (allstarcharts.com)IPOs are down to GFC-type levels. (ft.com)StrategyIf you have to speculate in the markets, at least follow these guidelines, including 'Do not speculate on the margin.' (morningstar.com)Europe's problems are now pretty well known. (albertbridgecapital.com)AppleApple ($AAPL) is pulling back expectations for iPhone sales. (finance.yahoo.com)The iPhone 14 Pro is a glimpse into the future. (sixcolors.com)CompaniesSigns of hope for an Alzheimer's treatment are helping Biogen ($BIIB). (statnews.com)Lululemon ($LULU) is launching a membership program, Lululemon Studio. (nytimes.com)What Adobe ($ADBE) is planning for Figma. (bloomberg.com)Ad sales have been falling throughout 2022. (vox.com)FinanceWall Street's biggest banks are paying $1.8 billion in fines over the use of messaging apps. (wsj.com)Keep an eye out for layoffs at investment banks. (economist.com)More SPAC liquidations are going to happen this year. (institutionalinvestor.com)GlobalCovid is the nail in the coffin as Hong Kong as a global city. (nytimes.com)The future of Petrobras hinges on the coming Presidential election. (ft.com)Russian men are fleeing in droves to avoid mobilization. (washingtonpost.com)EconomyMore evidence that housing prices peaked this Summer. (bonddad.blogspot.com)Bill McBride, "Rents are now decreasing seasonally." (calculatedrisk.substack.com)Is the Fed at this point 'chasing a phantom menace'? (bonddad.blogspot.com)Earlier on Abnormal ReturnsPersonal finance links: a great irony. (abnormalreturns.com)What you missed in our Tuesday linkfest. (abnormalreturns.com)Research links: a stock market constant. (abnormalreturns.com)Are you a financial adviser looking for some out-of-the-box thinking? Then check out our weekly e-mail newsletter. (newsletter.abnormalreturns.com)Mixed mediaThe most successful 'creators' are now essentially media companies. (mosaicventures.com)Dude Perfect is planning to build a $100 million headquarters building. (huddleup.substack.com)Niche only takes you so far when it comes to content, personality matters a lot. (adamsinger.substack.com).....»»

Category: blogSource: abnormalreturnsSep 28th, 2022Related News

Personal finance links: a great irony

Wednesdays are all about personal finance here at Abnormal Returns. You can check out last week’s links including a look at some... PodcastsBrett McKay talks with Nick Maggiulli about his book "Just Keep Buying: Proven Ways to Save Money and Build Your Wealth." (artofmanliness.com)Six questions you should ask your financial advisor, including 'If something happens to you, who will take over my account?' (peterlazaroff.com)HousingThere is a lot about our financial lives we can't control, including home prices. (awealthofcommonsense.com)The rising value of land is responsible for almost all of the surge in home values in recent decades. (wsj.com)A study shows remote work drove some 60% of the run up in home prices. (wealthmanagement.com)Average mortgage rates are exactly that, an average. Your mileage may vary. (wsj.com)A home is a bundle of things, not just a house with a mortgage attached. (abnormalreturns.com)Don't expect a home inspector to find everything. (humbledollar.com)ChildrenWhy we need to help children get off to head start with a good credit rating. (tonyisola.com)Parents are sacrificing themselves on the altar of youth sports. (humbledollar.com)Supporting adult children is now the norm in the U.S. (washingtonpost.com)SpendingTEE, "Plugging the leaks in your spending bucket and saving money is super-important but don’t be penny-wise, pound-foolish." (theescapeartist.me)When you stop buying 'stuff' you have more room to donate to charity. (onefrugalgirl.com)12 lessons learned from "Buy This, Not That: How to Spend Your Way to Wealth and Freedom." (mr-stingy.com)HumilityBen Carlson, "You could argue the more successful you become, the more advice you should seek from others." (awealthofcommonsense.com)Stop trying to optimize your life, because you will fail. (ofdollarsanddata.com)We are not very good at predicting what will make us happy. (sciencedaily.com)Personal financeBear markets are where wealth is built. (thereformedbroker.com)Why you shouldn't regret investing a lump sum. (whitecoatinvestor.com)For all intents and purposes, 70 is full Social Security retirement age. (marketwatch.com)Seven important lessons about retiring successfully. (humbledollar.com)Which habits consumers are going to keep from the pandemic. (rootofall.substack.com)Which debt should you pay off first? (bestinterest.blog)Habits compound. (humbledollar.com).....»»

Category: blogSource: abnormalreturnsSep 28th, 2022Related News

Tesla Pleads For Employees To Help With "Very High Volume" Of Deliveries Heading Into Quarter-End

Tesla Pleads For Employees To Help With "Very High Volume" Of Deliveries Heading Into Quarter-End Stop us if you've heard this one before: we're heading into the end of the quarter and an email has magically leaked to the pro-Tesla blog over at electrek - and again it's a plea from Elon Musk to his employees to help keep up with incredible delivery demand. It almost feels like we relive this same scenario every single quarter... Regardless, it's looking like Q3 2022 isn't going to be the exception, with electrek dutifully reporting this morning that Tesla is expecting a "very high volume" of vehicle deliveries during the end of the quarter.  And the organization is - wait for it - asking for all employee hands on deck. "We have been starting to get indications that it could be another intense delivery push," the blog wrote on Tuesday morning.  In an email obtained by electrek, Tesla wrote to its employees: "We will be delivering a very high volume of vehicles to eagerly waiting customers during the final days of Q3. To help ensure we can delight as many customers as possible, the delivery team is requesting additional support with key delivery-execution tasks." Tesla calls for all employees to help with tasks related to delivering vehicles in the email. This includes employees not in the sales and delivery department potentially partaking in tasks like "preparing vehicles, delivering vehicles directly to customers, and answering customer questions on delivery day", the blog says.  For the quarter, analysts are expecting deliveries between 350,000 and 370,000. The company's previous record was about 310,000 units, which it achieved in Q1 of this year. Delivery numbers are expected to be released this weekend.  "There’s no doubt that this quarter is going to be another delivery record," electrek writes with bold certainty. "But the last few days of the month could make the difference between Tesla hitting the lower end or the higher end of those 350,000- to 370,000-unit delivery estimates." How soon until electrek's staff flies out to California to help wash cars and prepare them for delivery, too? Tyler Durden Wed, 09/28/2022 - 02:45.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytSep 28th, 2022Related News

4 Low-Beta Tech Stocks to Hedge Against a Volatile Market

Investors can consider adding four low-beta tech stocks like T, BIDU, GSAT and EGAN into their portfolios to hedge against a highly volatile market environment. Technology sector stocks have been hit the hardest amid the U.S broader market sell-off year to date (YTD). Since early 2022, Wall Street has been witnessing high volatility due to several economic issues. These include Federal Reserve’s aggressive interest rate hikes, the Russia-Ukraine war-led energy crisis and persistent inflation over the last year.Major stock market indices in the United States, such as the Dow Jones Industrial Average, Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 have plunged 19.5%, 31% and 23.3%, respectively, YTD. The Zacks Computer and Technology sector has slumped 34.6% in the same time frame.Given the supply-chain disruptions as a result of the acute shortage of chips and other input components and currency fluctuations, near-term prospects of the tech sector look gloomy. To add to it, the Federal Reserve’s recent announcement of a sharp interest rate hike of 0.75% at its Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting to combat inflation is intensifying vulnerability in the tech space.The challenges are likely to persist in the near term, affecting the price performances of most tech stocks. But the question is should investors interested in tech stocks stay away from investing in the space?We believe that investing in low-beta tech stocks like AT&T T, Baidu BIDU, Globalstar GSAT, and eGain Corporation EGAN can aid investors in hedging against the current highly volatile market environment.Beta measures a stock's systematic risk or volatility compared with the market. Therefore, a stock with a beta of less than 1.0 will be less sensitive to the market’s movements than a stock with more than 1.0 beta.Picking the Right Low-Beta StocksWe have run the Zacks Stocks Screener to identify stocks with a beta between 0.25 and 0.70. We have narrowed our search by considering stocks with a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 (Strong Buy) Rank stocks here.Our PicksAT&T is one of the world’s leading communications service carriers and North America’s second-largest wireless service provider. The company is witnessing solid subscriber momentum currently. A customer-centric business model provides the company with healthy growth in its postpaid wireless business alongside a lower churn rate and higher-tier unlimited plans.This Zacks Rank #2 company has a beta of 0.48. Shares of T have slumped 36.3% YTD.AT&T Inc. Price and Consensus AT&T Inc. price-consensus-chart | AT&T Inc. QuoteHeadquartered in Dallas, TX, AT&T is actively investing in key areas of 5G and fiber and adjusting its business according to the evolving market scenario to fuel long-term growth. While optimizing operations, it is aiming to increase efficiencies to lower operating costs.The Zacks Consensus Estimate for T’s 2022 earnings is pegged at $2.52 per share, implying a decrease of 25.9% from the year-ago reported figure. For 2023, the consensus mark for earnings has been revised upward to $2.49 per share over the past seven days, indicating a 1.2% year-over-year fall.Baidu is a Chinese-language Internet search provider based in Beijing, the People's Republic of China. The company offers a Chinese language search platform and conducts its operations principally through Baidu Online Network Technology Co., Ltd., a network of third-party websites and software applications. It also offers Japanese search services, including web search, image search, video search, and blog search capabilities.This Zacks Rank #2 company has a beta of 0.66. Shares of BIDU have plunged 19.8% YTD.Baidu, Inc. Price and Consensus Baidu, Inc. price-consensus-chart | Baidu, Inc. QuoteBaidu continues to gain from the strong momentum of Apollo Go Robotaxi service across China on the back of its increasing availability in several cities and a growing number of rides. Solid momentum across the company’s AI business is driving its top-line growth. The growing PaddlePaddle developer community and the rising adoption of Baidu ACE smart transportation are contributing well to the company’s AI business.The consensus mark for BIDU’s 2022 earnings has been revised upward to $9.16 per share from $7.88 over the past 30 days, indicating a 9.1% year-over-year increase. For 2023, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings increased to $11.53 per share from $10.39 over the past 30 days, indicating year-over-year growth of 25.9%.Globalstar offers satellite voice and data services to commercial and recreational users in over 120 countries around the world. Its products include mobile and fixed satellite telephones, simplex and duplex satellite data modems and flexible service packages. Many land-based and maritime industries benefit from GSAT with increased productivity from remote areas beyond cellular and landline services.Globalstar currently carries a Zacks Rank #2. It has a beta of 0.26. Shares of GSAT have gained 37% YTD.Globalstar, Inc. Price and Consensus Globalstar, Inc. price-consensus-chart | Globalstar, Inc. QuoteGlobalstar data solutions are ideal for various asset and personal tracking, data monitoring and SCADA applications. The company's Commercial IoT segment continues to act as a major driver of revenue growth. In its latest quarterly release, Globalstar reported a 20% increase in SPOT activations and a 32% increase in the volume of its Commercial IoT hardware sales.The consensus mark for GSAT’s 2022 loss is pegged at 5 cents, indicating a 16.7% year-over-year increase. For 2023, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for loss narrowed to 5 cents per share from 6 cents over the past seven days.eGain is the leading provider of cloud customer engagement hub software. Having a presence in North America, EMEA and APAC, the company offers web customer interaction applications, social customer interaction applications and contact center applications.eGain solutions help improve customer experience, optimize service processes, and grow sales across the web, social, and phone channels. Hundreds of the world's largest companies rely on eGain to transform their fragmented sales engagement and customer service operations into unified Customer Engagement Hubs. In the latest quarter, the company’s Knowledge Hub solution was adopted by some major global clients, which include a leading global airline, a U.S-based health & benefit service provider and the Department of Taxation of one of the U.S state governments.eGain Corporation Price and Consensus eGain Corporation price-consensus-chart | eGain Corporation QuoteCurrently, eGain has a Zacks Rank #2. It has a beta of 0.31. Shares of EGAN have declined 26.7% YTD. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for EGAN’s fiscal 2023 earnings is pegged at 14 cents, remaining steady over the past seven days. Just Released: Zacks Unveils the Top 5 EV Stocks for 2022 For several months now, electric vehicles have been disrupting the $82 billion automotive industry. And that disruption is only getting bigger thanks to sky-high gas prices. Even titans in the financial industry including George Soros, Jeff Bezos, and Ray Dalio have invested in this unstoppable wave. You don't want to be sitting on your hands while EV stocks break out and climb to new highs. In a new free report, Zacks is revealing the top 5 EV stocks for investors. Next year, don't look back on today wishing you had taken advantage of this opportunity.>>Send me my free report revealing the top 5 EV stocksWant the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report AT&T Inc. (T): Free Stock Analysis Report Baidu, Inc. (BIDU): Free Stock Analysis Report eGain Corporation (EGAN): Free Stock Analysis Report Globalstar, Inc. (GSAT): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here. Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacksSep 27th, 2022Related News

Follow along with our Hurricane Ian live coverage

Find the latest Hurricane Ian forecast and updates in our live blog.The 14 most important ways to prepare for a hurricane.Hurricane categories tell only part of the story — here's the real damage storms like Ian can do.A Tampa Bay catastrophic plan lays out how a worst-case scenario Category 5 hurricane could devastate the area.Hurricane Ian grew from a tropical storm to a Category 3 storm in a single day. That's happening more often as oceans warm.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytSep 27th, 2022Related News