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aries1988 : prediction   13

When Asia Ruled the World
Nonfiction The Pudong skyline, Shanghai. Credit Lauryn Ishak for The New York Times Amazon Local Booksellers Barnes and Noble When you purchase an independently…
contrarian  west  empire  conflict  world  war  success  europe  fail  qing  ottoman  book  opinion  history  prediction  theory 
april 2019 by aries1988
Tech trends for 2018: the big will get bigger
the main engines of growth for the biggest tech companies in 2018 are ones that have already become a deeply ingrained part of business life: digital advertising, ecommerce and the wholesale move of global IT to the cloud.

Ecommerce accounts for about 14 per cent of sales in the US and 9 per cent in western Europe, according to Goldman Sachs. In China, the figure is 22 per cent.

The US platform companies that have positioned themselves to ride these waves are ending 2017 as the world’s five most valuable groups: Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook. And even with Apple expected to show barely any revenue growth in 2018, these companies are forecast to add $100bn in sales between them next year — a collective growth rate of 14 per cent.
2017  2018  prediction  technology  leader  company 
december 2017 by aries1988
Analysis | We have a pretty good idea of when humans will go extinct

That radical notion — that we are not, in fact, at the center of the universe — gives rise to what modern scientists call the Copernican Principle: We are not privileged observers of the world around us. We don't occupy a unique place in the universe. We are profoundly ordinary. We are not special.

Assuming that you and I are not so special as to be born at either the dawn of a very long-lasting human civilization or the twilight years of a short-lived one, we can apply Gott's 95 percent confidence formula to arrive at an estimate of when the human race will go extinct: between 5,100 and 7.8 million years from now.
probability  fun  example  human  disaster  berlin  future  prediction  earth  question 
october 2017 by aries1988
Our Automated Future

"I for one welcome our new computer overlords."

Could another person learn to do your job by studying a detailed record of everything you’ve done in the past? Martin Ford, a software developer, asks early on in Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future (Basic Books).

Imagine a matrix with two axes, manual versus cognitive and routine versus nonroutine. Jobs can then be arranged into four boxes: manual routine, manual nonroutine, and so on. (Two of Brynjolfsson and McAfee’s colleagues at M.I.T., Daron Acemoglu and David Autor, performed a formal version of this analysis in 2010.) Jobs on an assembly line fall into the manual-routine box, jobs in home health care into the manual-nonroutine box. Keeping track of inventory is in the cognitive-routine box; dreaming up an ad campaign is cognitive nonroutine.

Later, Ford notes, A computer doesn’t need to replicate the entire spectrum of your intellectual capability in order to displace you from your job; it only needs to do the specific things you are paid to do.

Each new technology displaced a new cast of workers: first knitters, then farmers, then machinists. The world as we know it today is a product of these successive waves of displacement, and of the social and artistic movements they inspired: Romanticism, socialism, progressivism, Communism.

Even as robots grow cleverer, some tasks continue to bewilder them. At present, machines are not very good at walking up stairs, picking up a paper clip from the floor, or reading the emotional cues of a frustrated customer

Routine jobs on the factory floor or in payroll or accounting departments tend to fall in between. And it’s these middle-class jobs that robots have the easiest time laying their grippers on.

As recently as twenty years ago, Google didn’t exist, and as recently as thirty years ago it couldn’t have existed, since the Web didn’t exist. At the close of the third quarter of 2016, Google was valued at almost five hundred and fifty billion dollars and ranked as the world’s second-largest publicly traded company, by market capitalization. (The first was Apple.)

Google also illustrates how, in the age of automation, new wealth can be created without creating new jobs. Google employs about sixty thousand workers. General Motors, which has a tenth of the market capitalization, employs two hundred and fifteen thousand people. And this is G.M. post-Watson. In the late nineteen-seventies, the carmaker’s workforce numbered more than eight hundred thousand.
ai  automation  robot  manufacturing  industry  workforce  future  crisis  opportunity  politics  book  opinion  prediction  history  explained  watson 
december 2016 by aries1988
Big Blue smoke | The Economist
IBM is helping to predict pollution

Under the accord, IBM’s researchers will harness the firm’s expertise in supercomputing, big-data analytics and weather forecasting to predict the levels of PM2.5 three days in advance. This will better enable the government to shut factories, restrict vehicles and alert citizens.
There are a hundred or so reliable monitoring stations today in Beijing but more are needed.

IBM plans to top up official data with more from weather satellites and sensors around the city. It is also open to crowdsourcing pollution readings. The firm’s China research team leads its global effort on social-media analytics. The question is how much openness Chinese officials will allow.
china  pollution  bigdata  supercomputer  prediction  system  research 
november 2016 by aries1988
Unclouded vision | The Economist
Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction. By Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner. Crown; 352 pages; $28. Random House; £14.99.

They were an eclectic bunch: housewives, unemployed factory workers and professors of mathematics. But Mr Tetlock and his collaborators were able to extract some common personality traits. Superforecasters are clever, on average, but by no means geniuses. More important than sheer intelligence was mental attitude. Borrowing from Sir Isaiah Berlin, a Latvian-born British philosopher, Mr Tetlock divides people into two categories: hedgehogs, whose understanding of the world depends on one or two big ideas, and foxes, who think the world is too complicated to boil down into a single slogan. Superforecasters are drawn exclusively from the ranks of the foxes.
book  prediction 
november 2015 by aries1988
The Power of Precise Predictions

Such questions don’t precisely get at what we want to know — namely, will the deal make the United States and its allies safer? — but they are testable and relevant to the question of the Iranian threat. Most important, they introduce accountability into forecasting. And that, it turns out, can depolarize debate.
prediction  politics  expert 
november 2015 by aries1988
Babbage: Things visible and invisible
Stream Babbage: Things visible and invisible by The Economist from desktop or your mobile device
map  satellite  earthquake  prediction  future 
november 2015 by aries1988
The climate scientist who predicted Hurricane Katrina explains why future storms will be worse - Quartz
An obvious point is that slowly rising sea levels increase the probability of storm-induced surges even when the statistics of the storms, such as top wind speed, themselves remain stable. Storm surges are physically the same thing as tsunamis but driven by wind and atmospheric pressure rather than the shaking seafloor, and they typically arrive near the peak of the storm’s fury.

Hurricanes are giant heat engines driven by the thermodynamic disequilibrium between the tropical oceans and atmosphere. This disequilibrium drives a strong flow of heat from the ocean to the atmosphere and is a direct consequence of the greenhouse effect: the tropical atmosphere is so opaque to infrared radiation that the sea surface cannot cool very much by directly radiating heat to space. Instead, it cools mostly by the evaporation of water, the same mechanism by which our sweaty bodies cool on a hot day.
climate  weather  prediction  future 
august 2015 by aries1988
The chickens are restless
SEISMOLOGISTS tend to greet the idea that some animals know when an earthquake is coming with a sizeable degree of scepticism. Though reports of odd animal…
earthquake  animal  prediction 
april 2015 by aries1988
Decades of Facebook likes will explain how you became yourself
According to a research group in the UK, it turns out that what people choose to “like” on Facebook can be used to determine with 95% accuracy whether they are Caucasian or African American, 88% accuracy whether they are gay or straight, and 65% accuracy whether they are a drug user, among other things.

We’re already tackling life history questions based on Facebook likes. For example, did your parents get divorced before they were 21, they can unlock that with 60% certitude. Given that it’s only a few years’ worth of likes, imagine that it’s in five or 10 years and there’s that much more data to go on, and people are revealing their lives through their smartphones and their laptops.”
data  prediction  behavior  Facebook 
september 2014 by aries1988
Our Love Affair With Predicting Divorce - NYTimes.com
“Throughout the day, partners would make requests for connection, what Gottman calls ‘bids.’ For example, say that the husband is a bird enthusiast and notices a goldfinch fly across the yard. He might say to his wife, ‘Look at that beautiful bird outside!’ He’s not just commenting on the bird here: he’s requesting a response from his wife — a sign of interest or support — hoping they’ll connect, however momentarily, over the bird.”

Nonetheless, the general idea that we can predict which couples will break up based on a discrete set of behavioral factors retains some appeal.

Then, too, there are the Gottmans’ prescriptions: Turn toward your partner. Say positive things. Celebrate the hard times you’ve been through. Look at the bird.
love  prediction  couple  behavior  howto 
july 2014 by aries1988

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