May's Essential Reads
I enjoyed this Wired article that highlights the problem: are we really OK receiving notifications about the number of notifications we have?
I very much enjoyed this Baffler article on the whole Cambridge Analytica debacle.
We’re approaching a tipping point on ‘insight-driven’ campaign development. Is this really anything more than much celebrated ad-tech? And isn’t influencing people to vote on an outcome the definition of political campaigning? Having met Alex Nix, he definitely strikes me as the sort who’d play it all up, not down. More drama than reality - which backfired a bit it seems.
I also loved this healthy dose of cynicism in Business Week -- a great take on the future of cryptocurrency.
And a similarly controversial take on the blockchain in Hackernoon.
A few interesting facts there too -- did you know that Visa can handle around 60,000 transactions per second? Bitcoin can only handle seven - at 35 times the energy usage.
“If you who brought Bitcoin’s transaction volume up to Visa’s it would be using as much electricity as the rest of the world put together”.
For the other side of the coin, here’s a more practical view from Matter Of Form’s COO Fred Moore on the use of Cryptocurrency and eCommerce.
Tom Goodwin in The Drum on The Leapfrog Effect. Something I feel quite passionately about - ailing infrastructure makes room for rising economies to learn and build faster. It’s why African smartphone uptake was so speedy -- cheap computers vs. expensive phones.
Anyway - the piece alludes to a host of similar examples: The first Blockchain powered election in Sierra Leone; the most widely adopted digital currency in Kenya; the most advanced Maglev trains in China and flying cars set to launch in Dubai.
On that note, here's the world's first human free bank in China, as reported by The Guardian.
CB Insights on the disruption of management consultancy (self-explanatory content, but some interesting historical context).
A fascinating article on how Microsoft has reorganised its team structure, effectively killing off Windows. A tale of failing culture, organisational change, and a Trojan Horse. I think.