Agtech’s Moment To Shine

from Forbes Agtech, the marriage of agriculture and technology, recently hit headlines with word of AppHarvest’s impending IPO. AppHarvest is an agtech startup that builds high-tech greenhouses with innovations that support water and energy conservation, including what is may be the world’s biggest greenhouse. The company’s high profile investors include domestic lifestyle entrepreneur Martha Stewart and Hillbilly Elegy author J.D. Vance. Over the summer celebrities Oprah Winfrey and Katy Perry invested in Apeel Sciences a California-based food bio company that produces a coating that extends the life of produce. Earlier this month Syngenta announced its acquisition of the Italian biotech […]

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IBM To Split Into Two Companies By End Of 2021

from ars technica IBM announced this morning that the company would be spinning off some of its lower-margin lines of business into a new company and focusing on higher-margin cloud services. During an investor call, CEO Arvind Krishna acknowledged that the move was a “significant shift” in how IBM will work, but he positioned it as the latest in a decades-long series of strategic divestments. “We divested networking back in the ’90s, we divested PCs back in the 2000s, we divested semiconductors about five years ago because all of them didn’t necessarily play into the integrated value proposition,” he said. […]

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The Plain View

from Plaintext Like any good nonfiction writer, the Majority Staff (i.e., Democrats) of the House Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial, and Administrative Law has produced a long-read document distinguished by deep research and an unyielding thesis: Big Tech is too big, too bad, and fights dirty. Sixteen months ago, the subcommittee set out to expose bad behavior in Silicon Valley’s top companies. Empowered with subpoenas, it had little trouble finding it. The docket of whistle-blowing witnesses and damning exhibits uncovered a litany of bullying, self-interested, anti-competitive behavior that justified the exercise, which some thought redundant because of ongoing investigations by the […]

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Why This Author Is Taking A Stand Against Amazon’s Audiobook Monopoly

from Fast Company When science fiction writer and activist Cory Doctorow releases his new novel, Attack Surface, next month, you’ll be able to pick up a physical copy from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or your local independent bookstore. If you’d prefer an e-book, you’ll be able to download it on Amazon’s Kindle, Barnes & Noble’s Nook, and other mainstream digital book platforms. But if you’re someone who prefers an audiobook, you’ll find the novel, which deals with a corporate cybersecurity expert struggling with the morality of her work, absent from one of the biggest audiobook stores on the internet: Amazon’s […]

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Eleanor Jacobs, 91, Dies; a Force Behind the Earth Shoe Phenomenon

from NYTs Eleanor Jacobs, who stumbled upon a pair of odd-looking shoes in Denmark and, with her husband, Raymond, created a short-lived phenomenon by selling them in the United States as Earth Shoes, died on Aug. 25 at her home in Litchfield, Conn. She was 91. Her daughter Susan Jacobs said the cause was congestive heart failure. In 1969, while she and her husband were vacationing in Denmark, Ms. Jacobs’s chronic back pain increased from all the walking she had been doing. She found unexpected salvation with a pair of negative-heel shoes she found at a store in Copenhagen. More […]

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Now Is the Time for Main Street Shops to Go Digital

from Wired AS MANHATTAN BRACED for lockdown in early March, the main street of Fredonia, New York, was still buzzing with activity. The town had been chosen as the location for season five of Small Business Revolution, a TV series hosted by Amanda Brinkman in which the shops in a particular community get a makeover, and filming was underway. “We wondered if Covid would end up showing up in the narrative of season five,” Brinkman mused. Now, “the entire season is going to be about how we were able to help these businesses through this crisis.” As the chief brand […]

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Change Is The New Normal: What Are Organizations Abandoning Since COVID-19 And What Will They Not Continue To Do Once Things Return To ‘Normal?’

from Forbes Our weekly discussion last week with leaders in the Future of Work and open talent ecosystem was powerful and open. We first addressed some of the issues surrounding our individual mental wellness and connectivity. Carin Knoop, from Harvard Business School has been conducting a bunch of research lately, “We may all come out of the COVID-19 experience with some form of PTSD and loneliness and burnout, all of which are things that we used to address or face or handle on our own, but with no outlets in the form of gyms or faith groups or other sources […]

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This Hoodie Comes With A Built-In Mask

from Fast Company If you’re tired of wearing a DIY mask, a new hoodie offers another option: a built-in mask, made from a material that can (theoretically) filter out more germs than an N95 mask, zips up into the hood—which is itself a filter. The hoodie, which is available for preorder now, is the latest design from G95, a company that also makes scarves that double as air filters. Founder Carlton Solle launched the company three years ago after getting sick on a business trip to China; a doctor told him that high levels of air pollution might be the […]

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4 Ways To Boost Your Chances Of Landing A New Job During The Pandemic

from Fast Company The coronavirus crisis has the world economy in upheaval. If you’re not already hurting, you surely know someone who is. Layoffs, shutdowns, cutbacks, and salary cuts are happening across industries, both blue collar and white. The nation is in a state of emergency, and we’re all but certainly heading toward, if not already in, a recession. The temptation to set aside our focus on work is understandable, especially when the primary concern should be for our health and the health of our friends and family. But the truth is, especially with all the upheaval underway, you may […]

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How To Quickly Capture Today’s Untapped Business Opportunities

from Forbes During an economic downturn, if you look close enough, there are always industries that are doing better than they ever did. What’s interesting is that despite the economy’s negative impact on buyers’ purchasing power, the demand for certain companies’ products is so high that even the leaders of the industry cannot keep up with demand. Will you do something about it? Entrepreneurs owe their leadership, hustle, problem-solving skills and risk-taking to those in need. You know there’s a promising business opportunity when you see people ready to spend their money but can’t find anyone to take it. This […]

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These Are The Industries That Are Hiring For Professional Roles Now

from Fast Company If you’re looking for a gig to help pay the bills, grocery stores and delivery companies need help—and fast. But if you’re looking for something permanent or want to take the next step in your career, you may be able to find a professional role, too, says Michelle Armer, chief people officer at the job site CareerBuilder. “There is definitely still a demand for professional and management workers across many different industries,” she says. The catch is that you’ve got to act fast. As unemployment rates continue rise, more job seekers are scouring the market. We spoke […]

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‘Scared to Death’ by Arbitration: Companies Drowning in Their Own System

from NYTs Teel Lidow couldn’t quite believe the numbers. Over the past few years, the nation’s largest telecom companies, like Comcast and AT&T, have had a combined 330 million customers. Yet annually an average of just 30 people took the companies to arbitration, the forum where millions of Americans are forced to hash out legal disputes with corporations. Mr. Lidow, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur with a law degree, figured there had to be more people upset with their cable companies. He was right. Within a few months, Mr. Lidow found more than 1,000 people interested in filing arbitration claims against […]

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Zoombombing Is A Crime, Not A Prank, Prosecutors Warn

from ars technica Coronavirus-related social distancing measures have given a big popularity boost to Zoom, a video conferencing platform that’s known for its ease of use but not necessarily strong security or privacy protections. Internet trolls and other troublemakers have responded with “Zoombombing”: joining Zoom meetings uninvited and disrupting them. Zoombombers have exposed themselves to schoolchildren and shouted racial slurs. In a Friday statement, federal prosecutors in Michigan warned the public that Zoombombing isn’t a harmless prank; it’s a crime. “Hackers are disrupting conferences and online classrooms with pornographic and/or hate images and threatening language,” wrote the US Attorney’s Office […]

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How To Keep Your Business Thriving During (And After) The Coronavirus

from Fast Company Google. Amazon. Apple. These were some of the earliest corporations that mandated remote working because of COVID-19. Since then, nearly all businesses have followed suit as national and global agencies recommend social distancing to curb the spread of the virus. For huge firms with seemingly unlimited resources and technology, this displacement may be nothing more than a minor inconvenience. Leaders of smaller businesses are likely struggling with a new reality where social distancing is a requirement, not a suggestion. Previously, remote work was more a perk than a necessity for companies. Before the pandemic, just 41 percent […]

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How To Keep Your Job Search Going When Hiring Slows Down

from Forbes Hiring is slowing down: Business Insider, NPR and USA Today all ran stories covering a variation on how businesses are increasingly reluctant to hire. Between global market volatility and uncertainty around coronavirus, there are plenty of reasons why companies choose to wait on hiring more staff. If you’re looking for a job, this could mean a longer search, which is hard emotionally and financially. Less hiring also means a more competitive search, as candidates vie for a shrinking pool of jobs. However, don’t just sit back and brace for the worst. Here are five ways to keep your […]

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The Future Of Work Looks Like Staying Out Of The Office

from ars technica It’s 2020: we finally live in the future! Or at least a future—one where broadband Internet connections and portable, reasonably high-powered computing tools are pervasive and widely accessible, even if they aren’t yet universal. Millions of workers, including all of us here at Ars, use those tools to do traditional “office jobs” from nontraditional home offices. Tens of millions of jobs at all points of the income and skill spectrum are of course not suited to remote work. Doctors, dentists, and countless other healthcare workers of the world will always need to be hands-on with patients, just […]

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Improving Workforce Success Among America’s College Students

from Brookings As the presidential campaign of 2020 kicks into high gear, the stagnation of worker earnings in recent decades has drawn much attention and comment from the candidates. Yet, outside of advocating for a few trendy proposals like free college, the candidates have said little to date on how to improve education and skills, especially those that are highly rewarded in the US labor market, among the roughly two-thirds of Americans who do not attain BAs. The candidates’ relative silence is especially noteworthy in a year when both the Higher Education Act (HEA) and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity […]

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Susan Fowler: Why I Wrote the Uber Memo

from NYTs On Feb. 18, 2017 — three years ago almost to the day — I sat at my kitchen table, my laptop open, my mind racing. In the two months since I’d quit my job as an entry-level software engineer at Uber, I’d tried to forget what I’d experienced and witnessed there, but it was impossible. In my year at the company, I’d been propositioned over company chat by my new manager on my first day on his team; when I reported the harassment, I was told it was his first offense, but later learned that it wasn’t (he […]

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Stop. Stop the Presses.

from Medium At the end of an exceptional first week for our new program in News Innovation and Leadership at the Newmark J-school, the students — five managing editors, a VP, a CEO, and many directors among them — said they learned much from teachers and speakers, yes, but the greatest value likely came from each other, from the candid lessons they all shared. When I first proposed this program about four years ago, I suggested it should offer a smorgasbord of courses to be taken at will. Then I was fortunate enough to recruit Anita Zielina, the ideal news […]

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Facial Recognition Moves Into a New Front: Schools

from NYTs Jim Shultz tried everything he could think of to stop facial recognition technology from entering the public schools in Lockport, a small city 20 miles east of Niagara Falls. He posted about the issue in a Facebook group called Lockportians. He wrote an Op-Ed in The New York Times. He filed a petition with the superintendent of the district, where his daughter is in high school. But a few weeks ago, he lost. The Lockport City School District turned on the technology to monitor who’s on the property at its eight schools, becoming the first known public school […]

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