Real Time Payments Network

The clearing house has released business principles that outline the operation of the real time payments (RTP) Network. A full set of guidelines is here. These are important inasmuch as they set out key points, among them most importantly: TCH runs the RTP network as a utility for the benefit of the industry and RTP fees shall continue to be flat for all participants regardless of size, and shall not include volume discounts or minimum volume requirements. It does though, contains a super-clause, which is typical of the monopolistic “free market” here in America. In an effort to restrain competition, … Continue reading Real Time Payments Network

Stock buybacks rule – Tax breaks enable

As predicted, not by the tweeter in chief, but by almost anyone who understands big companies and executive, stock buybacks hit an all time high in 2018 and are likely to be higher again in 2019. This is a big deal, companies that buyback their stock, are reducing the number of shares available on the market. That generally means the share price goes up. Share prices are often one of the main ways executives are measured, their bonuses are usually dependant on the share price. Also, because the price of each share goes up, it makes it harder for lower … Continue reading Stock buybacks rule – Tax breaks enable

What’s a #blockchain?

@AARP magazine nails #blockchain #blockchaintechnology pic.twitter.com/vS1d755Czu — Mark Cathcart (@cathcam) October 28, 2018 I posted the above to twitter, but its not really a joke. #blockchain has become the emperor’s new clothes and to some degree, @AARP is right.  The original article may be a little more aimed at humour than technical depth, but it’s not wrong. A few of my friends have already been cold called and offering blockchain backed securities and similar. We know that’s mostly just marketing BS, but they don’t know. So this is, whatever you think, a good way to get them thinking about it. … Continue reading What’s a #blockchain?

Look & See – Rural America

I’ve written a number of harsh posts about those living in rural America, mostly based off the perception that is pushed by the Republican party, that is, rural Americans don’t understand, and resent urban Americans. That rural Americans are the god-fearing, backbone of America and urban and city dwellers are welfare dependents, and worse still, socialists. Certainly, the Republican party continue to push this agenda today, dividing sub-urban and rural communities from the cities. As shown here, rural Americans claiming benefits has sky rocketed between ’96 and 2015; increasingly, the programs getting cut, adversely hit rural America harder, as rural … Continue reading Look & See – Rural America

Google and Voice

You’d think given the proliferation of voice activated home technology like Alexa, Siri, Google Voice Assistant, Cortana etc. we’d be on the home stretch for voice activation in cars, where distraction is a real life threatening problem. I don’t travel much now, I don’t drive more than 6k miles per year, which is a good thing based on today’s experience with Google. I’ll admit, I didn’t do any scientific research, I’ve no idea what other brands do, but I got stuck in traffic today heading into Boulder. I asked Google Assistant to read a web article from Vox. My Google … Continue reading Google and Voice

The Popularity Of ‘Westworld’ Points To Our Anxiety About AI

“If things play out with AI the way that they have done with Facebook, we’re in a lot of trouble.” Jonathan Nolan Source: The Popularity Of ‘Westworld’ Points To Our Anxiety About AI, The Show’s Creators Say | Here & Now Continue reading The Popularity Of ‘Westworld’ Points To Our Anxiety About AI

Fear of Automation

ZDNet has a good summary of a few recent reports on automation, a subject I’ve covered here more than once. The more interesting survey report is from a Harris Poll for ZipRecruiter, an online employment marketplace. ZipRecruiter’s nationwide data shows 60% of job seekers believe fears around robots taking away jobs are overhyped while 2 in 5 employed job seekers (41%) believe their current job will be automated within their lifetime. This is more than likely because workers asked, don’t see the big picture. They don’t get involved with decisions and discussions about how to cut cost and risk from … Continue reading Fear of Automation

Bringing Jobs Back to the USA

As the GOP push through their tax bill, without any transparency, one of the big ticket items is corporate tax breaks. My opinion is the government are really wasting their time, and our money giving tax breaks, especially to companies to repatriate their overseas earnings, in some kind of swap for jobs. No such thing will happen, sure there will be a few winners here and there, but nothing substantial and certainly nothing overtime. If the government wanted to do this, they’d have been better creating an incentive program, which gave them tax deductions for each net new job they … Continue reading Bringing Jobs Back to the USA

The machines are coming – 2049?

It is notoriously difficult to predict the future. I lived my life at IBM, following Alan Kays 1982 aphorism The best way to predict the future is to invent it In my career I got many things right, and many things wrong. While Amazon was still a small time bookseller, and Youtube for the most part didn’t exist, it was obvious both business models would thrive. While I couldn’t convince IBM to pursue either of these opportunities with ny success, we demonstrated the technology perfectly. My “Wired for Life” Presentation contains some of my wins, and many of my losses. … Continue reading The machines are coming – 2049?

Giant fleet of small scheduling nightmares

In tenuous link between my recent posts on automation, here and especially here, where back in November I discussed autonomous vehicles and their impact on employment. I also said: While many cities are salivating over the ability of self-driving, autonomous … Continue reading Giant fleet of small scheduling nightmares