Gundam, Asimo, Velociraptor receptionists; Japan has been at the forefront of robotics since the inception of the concept, and new research suggests that Japanese permissive attitude toward automatons could see robots taking almost half of Japanese jobs within twenty years. A report by the Nomura Research Institute (NRI) [PDF – Japanese] in Japan revealed that, of the 601 jobs it looked at in collaboration with Oxford University, 49% of the positions could be taken by robot workers by 2035.
“Due to a shrinking population, labor shortages are predicted for Japan. We’re looking at the social repercussions of attempting to preserve the labor force by introducing AI and robots into it,” the report reads.
“We did the same kind of analysis in Japan that Professor Michael Osborne from Oxford University carried out in the UK and the US,” Yumi Wakao, a researcher at NRI, told Vice Motherboard. “We found that up to 49 percent of jobs could be replaced by computer systems.”
“However, this is only a hypothetical technical calculation,” Wakao added. “It doesn’t take into account social factors.”
The report shows that Japanese workers are at greater risk of losing their job to a robot, with the US not far behind (47%), while one-third of UK workers could be usurped by mechanical systems.
Rapid expansion can have one fatal flaw, if you do not match or beat revenue expectations then you will have to eventually downsize your company. HP have found this out, or the employees to put it more accurately, have taken the brunt of another round of expected job cuts with the figure being somewhere in the region of 25,000 – 30,000 positions to fall.
The technology stalwart has confirmed these roles will go from HP Enterprise; this is with the aim of bundling together its data analysis and software divisions which in turn separates them from the personal computer and printer operation. This brutal scythe cutting will be completed by the end of October 2015; this is on top of 55,000 jobs which have already been culled over the last 3 years. HP aim to save around $2 billion annually from its business by reducing costs which include wages.
Chief executive Meg Whitman, who will lead HP Enterprise, informed investors of the potential to profit to the tune of around $50bn in annual revenue from the business. HP insists the company will be nimbler and therefore able to meet the “evolving needs of our customers around the world”. The New York Times Square Stock Exchange has reacted badly, as expected to news of both further layoffs and also uncertainty over the direction of HP, it has lost 33% of its value in the year to date
Unfortunately, HP lost touch of the ever-evolving trend of consumer tech over the last decade or so, gone are the bulky towers and a large staffed manufacturing base with which to churn out consumer tech. Computers are now associated with tablets and smartphones and the trend of lighter gadgets have propelled a new innovation onto the market. HP will need to adjust or face further uncertainty, it’s a shame that ordinary employees are facing the brunt and employment is very uncertain considering the intense competition for fewer jobs within the world of tech.
Thank you sky news for providing us with this information.
The New Yorkerhas published a lengthy profile of Apple’s SVP of Design, Jony Ive. The profile is an unprecedented look into the professional and private life of the man largely deemed to be the spiritual successor of Steve Jobs.
Among a host of interesting tidbits, we see some details concerning the Apple Watch, including how early prototypes struggled with the device’s new ‘glances’ feature.
“The Apple Watch is designed to remain dark until a wearer raises his or her arm. In the prototypes worn around the Cupertino campus at the end of last year, this feature was still glitchy. For Marc Newson, it took three attempts—an escalation of acting styles, from naturalism to melodrama—before his screen came to life.”
There’s also new details regarding Apple’s choices for the larger screen sizes of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus – devices they’d been working on since 2011.
“A few years ago, Ive and his colleagues assessed each prototype size of the future iPhone 6 by carrying them around for days. “The first one we really felt good about was a 5.7,” he recalled. “And then, sleeping on it, and coming back to it, it was just ‘Ah, that’s way too big.’ And then 5.6 still seems too big.” (As Cook described that process, “Jony didn’t pull out of his butt the 4.7 and the 5.5.”)”
Interestingly, Ive also touches on car design and his disapproval of the look of many vehicles on the road today. Notable due to the recent rumours concerning Apple potentially building a car.
“To his right was a silver sedan with a jutting lower lip. Ive said, quietly, “For example.” As the disgraced car fell behind, I asked Ive to critique its design: “It is baffling, isn’t it? It’s just nothing, isn’t it? It’s just insipid.” He declined to name the model, muttering, “I don’t know, I don’t want to offend.” (Toyota Echo.)”
The profile is a terribly intriguing read, giving deep insights into Apple and Ive, unlike many profiles written before it.
Universal Pictures has announced that the Steve Jobs movie will be released on October 9th 2015. This news follows the appearance of the first pictures depicting the movie’s stars in their roles.
Earlier this week we saw Fassbender and Rogan as Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, dressed in 70s/80s attire – most likely centring around the Macintosh launch in 1984. Aside from making that connection based on their clothing, writer Alan Sorkin has said that the movie will look more closely at Jobs’ earlier years, rather than the more successful years later on. It will also apparently feature heavily his family life too, with reference to his lovechild Lisa, a daughter he previously disowned, but later reconnected with, something that flourished into what would then be a lifelong relationship with her.
Besides those paparazzi shots, we’ve also seen a number of images from extras who have been assembling at the Flint Center for Perfuming Arts – the very place the Mac was released in over 30 years ago.
After a pile of Apple patent applications for styluses and a new analyst report suggesting an ‘iPad Pro’ would come with a stylus, many are questioning whether Apple’s next iPad will indeed come with… you guessed it, a stylus.
Now why is this signifiant? Well, Apple and more specifically Steve Jobs have had quite a degree of hostility towards styluses.
“Who wants a stylus? You get em’, put em’ away, lose em’ – yuck. Nobody wants a stylus.” – Steve Jobs
You see a lot of people are making a big deal about Apple’s potential new opening to styluses because of this. Apple is known for its carefree attitude to contradicting itself – Steve Jobs was initially opposed to having an SDK for the iPhone when it was released, asking developers to build web apps. But of course, a year later, Jobs launched the App Store, something which has become a massive success.
However, this really isn’t a contradiction this time – the device the stylus would be used with is a large ‘pro’ tablet device; the stylus would effectively take the place of a wireless mouse, not like a fiddly little thing you can lose with a phone. So – is this really a big surprise?
CNET shot the image above which appears to show the beginnings of production on the Steve Jobs biopic. The movie has already been subject to many twists and turns. Many big-name actors opted in and opted out of the starring role, while Sony Pictures dropped the movie and handed it to Universal. It’s also worth mentioning how it got caught up the massive Sony Pictures hack too.
Now things finally seem to be on track, with filming activity taking place at Jobs’ parents’ garage where the company was founded. The garage is famous in the story of Apple, as it’s where the first Apple I computers were manufactured by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and their first employees, including Chris Espinosa, Apple employee number 8 who is still working at the company today.
Besides that however, there’s little in the way of new information about the movie. We do now know that it will feature Michael Fassbender as Jobs, with Seth Rogan as Steve Wozniak. There’s also word that Dumb and Dumber‘s Jeff Daniels will star as John Sculley; the guy who effectively fired Jobs from his own company in 1985.
There’s a constant raging debate between tech lovers over different companies and their products. Mac or PC, iOS or Android, PlayStation or Xbox, PC or Console… the list goes on. But there are a number of seminal moments in the history of technology that most of us can agree on. Those inventions or product introductions that changed everything in their industry.
One of those events occurred 9 years ago, on January 9th 2007, when Steve Jobs stood on stage at the Moscone Center in San Francisco to introduce the iPhone. There had been smartphones before it – the BlackBerry as the biggest example. But no phone had really been ‘smart’ until that point. Sure, some phones had internet access, some had touchscreens, but none of them really put all of those things together in one compelling and highly useful device.
A smartphone today really is the appropriate miniaturisation of the functions of the PC to a handheld device, with the iPhone being the first of its kind to do that properly. It essentially became the blueprint for every smartphone following it.
Bellow you can witness the iPhone keynote itself, what has been called one of the greatest and most important product introductions in history. A presentation that definitely shows Steve Jobs at his finest.
The Associated Press, CNN and Bloomberg have filled a motion to have the video deposition of Steve Jobs released from the ongoing iPod lawsuit. The publications are in a battle against Apple’s lawyers who are actively seeking it stays confined to the courtroom.
Attorney Thomas Burke made the point that there would be no legal case to prevent its release, considering it was merely a “regular testimony” with a significant level of interest from the public. Apple’s lead attorney requested that the video should not be released. The video itself is 2 hours long, and features Steve Jobs discussing Apple, its competitors and iTunes, 6 months before his death in October of 2011. Subsequently, despite it having never been seen publicly, the deposition would not be the last known recorded footage of Jobs – that was his appearance before the Cupertino City Council in June 2011, concerning the new Apple campus.
The iPod lawsuit concerns the digital rights management of the devices between 2006 and 2009, when it’s alleged that the company acted unfairly by blocking users from installing content from competing music services on their iPods.
The other day we reported on the news that Steve Jobs was to appear in court over an iPod lawsuit via a video deposition recorded in 2011.
Well the trial began yesterday, and we have some of the first details of what was said in that video. According to Reuters, Jobs delivered a bit of a crushing blow to Real Networks, the company behind Real Player:
“During his 2011 deposition, Jobs displayed some of the edge he was known for, according to a transcript filed in court. Asked if he was familiar with Real Networks, Jobs replied: “Do they still exist?”
The video was shown alongside email exchanges between Jobs and other Apple executives. One of those emails from 2004, continued to add to the Real Networks bashing, with Jobs considering the release of a statement likening them to hackers:
“How’s this?” Jobs wrote. “‘We are stunned that Real is adopting the tactics and ethics of a hacker and breaking into the iPod.'”
Jobs said that Apple felt compelled to implement DRM on the iPod to make it more appealing to the music industry. At the time, illegal downloads had swarmed the internet, making iTunes something very difficult to get music executives to work with.
The trial continues, with current Apple SVPs Phil Schiller and Eddy Cue expected to make appearances.
Elon Musk’s space project – SpaceX, is after a farmer. The announcement came via a job posting this week.
Now hold your horses, just like many of us, you may well have become intrigued by the possibility that Musk and Co. were investigating the possibility of farming on Mars. It turns out that this is probably not the case.
The posting itself is quite earth-related –
Perform practical farm activities, e.g. driving tractors, operating machinery, spraying fields, etc.
Procure equipment and supplies, e.g. tractors, implements, fertilizer and seed
Perform or arrange for the maintenance and repair of machinery and equipment
Maintain, monitor, and perform actions as necessary to increase the quality of crop yield
Agriculture.com (via The Verge) says that the posting is probably to do with SpaceX’s finances rather than Martian exploration. They suggest that it’s all down to the tax exemptions that can be brought by declaring land as farm land, as well as the purchase of farming equipment.
Anyway, if you are a farmer in McGregor, Texas and you’re interested in space, this job could be a nice fit.
Apple’s co-founder and former CEO, Steve Jobs, has been granted 141 patents since he passed away in October 2011.
The number, which is more than the 9 Bill Gates has been granted and the dozen or so granted to Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin in their lifetimes, adds to his 313 patents amassed during his career.
In an article by MIT Technology Review, we get to take a look back at Jobs’ patents, including his very first, simply titled ‘Personal Computer’, and one of his most recent, covering the design of Apple’s iconic 5th Avenue retail store in New York.
You might just wonder how a person who is no longer living can be awarded a patent. Well it’s all to do with applications, the review process and the time taken to do all of those things. Many of these patents will have been applied for just before his death, but have taken until now to be granted.
Although, as MIT points out, Apple was still applying for patents with his name right up until October 4th 2011 – the day before he passed away.
It’s amazing how Steve Jobs still keeps popping up in the news and how he continues to remain relevant and influential 3 years after his death.
Apple’s third and largely unknown co-founder, Ronald Wayne, is planning to sell his personal archive of Apple memorabilia.
Wayne’s archive most notably features an untouched pre-order form for the Apple II and perhaps more importantly, blueprints for the same machine and proof sheets for the hallowed Apple I.
Even though no hardware will be included in the auction, the guide price for the documents is $30,000 – $50,000. The auction will be held by Christie’s on December 11th.
Ronald Wayne is Apple’s little known co-founder alongside Jobs and Wozniak. He was essentially brought into the company by Jobs to bring some business expertise to their rapidly developing company. Initially he was given 10% of the company, but later gave it up, declaring that he couldn’t deal with the two Steve’s endless bickering.
There’s no doubt Ron regrets that decision now though – 10% of Apple today would be worth $70 billion.
As predicted, Universal Studios have picked up the Steve Jobs biopic that Sony Pictures dropped just days ago.
Sony apparently dropped the movie due to a schedule clash, with Fassbender being unable to shoot the movie at the time Sony wanted to. The film has already been written by Alan Sorkin, the same writer behind The Social Network, and is to be directed by Danny Boyle of Trainspotting and Slumdog Millionaire.
The film is said to cover 3 different stages in Jobs’ career and life – the introduction of the Macintosh in 1984, his time at NeXT in the 80s/90s and the introduction of the iPod in 2001.
There’s no doubt Apple fans will be looking forward to the movie, but with such a great writer and director, along with Jobs’ colossal impact upon technology, this may just appeal to quite a few more people.
Apple’s iPad sales have reportedly declined now for the third consecutive quarter, seeing the iPad mini 3 in particular produce a poor sales effort across the globe. Given the focus on larger smart phone screens and better big-tablet technology, does the iPad mini have a place in the market?
Sales analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicts that iPad sales will remain weak well into Q1 2015 with Apple set to sell 9.8 million units year on year in 2014, seeing a 40% drop in the first quarter alone. The iPad Pro release has reportedly been pushed back until the second quarter of 2015, so until then we will have to watch Apple struggle. Last quarter saw a $5.3 billion sales churn for Apple’s iPad sales as a whole, ranking second only to their iPhone line but showing a continuous decline with every quarter. When is it time to call it quits? That’s up to Apple to decide, but we may see them change direction or technologies in the near future to continue the validity of their smart tablet branch.
The original iPad lead the charge in the tablet extravaganza season, seeing other companies such as ASUS pit their popular Nexus amongst other big-brand offerings. The iPad was originally set in motion by the late Steve Jobs, claiming that their 9.7-inch screen was the “golden dimension”, providing users with a not to big, nor too small alternative offering to a laptop or smart phone. Since this time however, we’ve seen the introduction of products like the iPad mini and Nexus 7, but these smaller siblings beg the question – why not just use a galaxy note or iPhone 6 Plus?
Personally I purchased a refurbished ASUS Galaxy 7 early in 2013. I used it quite heavily as my current HTC desire lacked the processing power, battery life or features that I needed for day-to-day activities. However, when I made the upgrade to a Samsung Galaxy S4 phone in late 2013, the Nexus remained untouched for months.
What are you personal experiences with tablets big and small? Are they another fad that we’ve seen pass just like the ‘Netbook’ craze?
Look out! Amazon’s drones are out to get yo.. deliver things to you!
According to a job posting on Amazon’s website, they are seeking a “Flight Operations Engineer” in Cambridge to help in the testing of their “Prime Air” delivery drones. The job posting requires the candidate to have “flight test experience, manned or unmanned”.
The new posting comes with ads for project managers, software engineers and a “Senior Research Scientist”. This quickly follows last week’s news that Amazon was seeking permission from the FAA to conduct tests in the US. It seems that Amazon’s plans to conquer the skies are moving very rapidly.
In this post-industrial age, the world’s labour market has shifted from machinery making the jobs of people easier and more efficient to automated technology – computerised systems and robotics – that remove the need for people entirely. Professional service firm Deloitte predict that one third of all jobs in the United Kingdom could become automated within twenty years.
Deloitte’s research was carried out in conjunction with Carl Benedikt Frey, of the Oxford Martin School, and Michael A Osborne, of the Department of Engineering Science, at the University of Oxford. Frey and Osborne’s earlier study, back in 2013, estimated that close to 50% of US jobs are at risk of automation.
The study noted a disturbing link between low-paid jobs and high risk of automation, suggesting that poor destined to suffer the most from the rise of technology. The amount of UK jobs deemed low or no risk is 40%, rising to 51% in the London area. Frey calls cities such as London, “incubators for new ideas and products,” saying that, “With the right policies, London can be at the front-line in developing the next generation of digital technologies.”
A new report suggests that Apple is planning to join the likes of Microsoft and Sony in opening a specialist Research and Development facility in Cambridge, UK.
The building is said to be located at 90 Hills Road in an area of highly sought after corporate office space. The report notes that Apple plans to start with 20 employees at the facility, growing to 40 in the next year.
It’s said that over 1000 technology companies have taken up offices in Cambridge, earning the city the nickname of “Silicon Fen”.
The UK government has apparently been working on getting Apple to establish a more significant presence in country for 25 years, with Apple currently only holding a small office on Regent Street in London and a medium size facility in Uxbridge, Middlesex. Most of Apple’s European operations are based in Cork, Ireland, a facility they’ve operated since the early 1980s.
If you are a Microsoft employee then there is reason to worry right now. According to insider sources cited by Reuters Microsoft could be looking to cut as many as 6000 jobs in an announcement that will be made later on today. Microsoft is seeking to trim-down the newly acquired Nokia smartphone business as well as reshape the cloud-computing and mobile software divisions. The job cut could end up being the largest in Microsoft’s 39 year history coming just five months after the new CEO Satya Nadella took to the helm. Just last week the new CEO spoke to the public and Microsoft’s employees about his vision to create a leaner business.
Microsoft is rumoured to be cutting staff mainly at the Nokia division but some job losses might also come in the Xbox Game and Entertainment unit. Microsoft is currently undergoing a visionary change under its new CEO that will see it move from a primarily software company to one that sells online services, apps and devices with a specific focus on productivity.
Nadella’s cuts are expected to be the biggest since former CEO Steve Ballmer axed 5800 jobs (6% of Microsoft’s workforce) in 2009 during the depths of the Western recession.
The Xbox One has only been with us a few months, but after an extended console cycle on the last generation, it’s unlikely that both Sony and Microsoft will be looking to repeat the same time scale for their new hardware (just don’t quote me on that). For the team at Microsoft, it looks like they may already be hiring for some new hardware developers, which isn’t overly surprising given that it can take years to take a console from concept to being ready for retail.
The Redmond camp published a job ad for an Industrial Designer and you can check out the listing here or get the brief below;
The Xbox Industrial Design studio is building a world class in house team. We love entertainment. We live for building transformative entertainment experiences that resonate with consumers. We are looking for passionate designers who want to help us create next generation entertainment hardware for Microsoft.
This is a design position within the Xbox industrial design studio. You will be joining a team that drives vision and product development for Xbox hardware programs. The right candidate will be a “hands on” individual contributor that will bring thought leadership, inspirational creative output, and passion to the Xbox entertainment space. In essence, this position requires nothing less than a “super creator”.
As an industrial designer you will collaborate with design team and bring inventive ideas which will have large impact across the Xbox Entertainment Business.
We expect a spontaneous and innovative creative process that takes advantage of consumer insight harvesting, inspiration way-finding, 3d sketching, prototyping, thoughtful consideration of business needs, and understanding of technical considerations. Above all the candidate should have a portfolio that demonstrates the ability to design soulful product experiences that delight consumers.
I have no doubt that Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo… perhaps even a few other hardware manufacturers are tinkering in a lab somewhere with what they can do next in the console sector. This could be next-gen hardware, or perhaps even just a revised Xbox One unit, as we all know the “slim” variants of the new consoles are inevitable within a year or two.
I’d still love to know what they’re work on, I just hope they’re not going to waste time with a third-gen Kinect module.
To help try to recruit potential new employees, banks could take a look at overall gaming skills to help match job candidates with the appropriate role. This doesn’t mean Call of Duty, as the games will be focused on big data and neuroscience, providing a realistic game-based recruiting option.
The use of certain games can help companies gauge which people would be appropriate for certain job roles.
Here is what Frida Polli, CEO and co-founder of Pymetrics, a company focused on gaming research, said in a recent statement:
“It’s only an upside to students because it’s a sourcing tool. We are going to recommend you to a bank where we see you will be a good fit. But if you want to apply to another bank independently, they will never know that you weren’t a match. It will always feel like a win situation for them.”
Polli went to MIT and has a PhD in neuroscience, and her program is currently in negotiations or early pilot stages with several banks – and her team has proof of concepts with several major banks in the United States.
It’s not uncommon to hear technology and biotech companies use interesting recruitment tools to find the best and brightest talent – so it’s not surprising to hear financial institutions also want to utilize the technology.
Thank you to CNBC for providing us with this information
LinkedIn has finally added a feature which users wanted to see for a long time, namely blocking other LinkedIn users. The addition of this particular feature adds a new privacy control to the service, giving you complete control upon restricting access to your profile, direct interactions and network activity from other members who you don’t want snooping around.
While the blocking feature represents a simple tool to block spammers and other uninteresting messages which users receive monthly or even daily, it also adds more serious safety measures, such as the case of users who are victims of stalking or domestic violence. In addition to the blocking feature, LinkedIn also mentions some additional tools which can be very helpful in terms of security, such as tools to disconnect from existing connections, tools to control your activity broadcasts, as well as profile and photo visibility settings.
It is stated that after a user is blocked, you won’t be able to access each other’s profiles, message each other, and if you had been connected before blocking, you won’t be anymore, along with removing any endorsements and recommendations from that member and neither user will ever be recommended to the other again in the “People You May Know” or “People also Viewed” sections of LinkedIn.
Thank you TechCrunch for providing us with this information
Advances in Technology have led to increased efficiency throughout all areas of our lives. No other area has seen more improvements than the workplace. From warehouses to the office, technology has greatly improved productivity. Here’s a look at 5 of the best innovations for business efficiency.
Grexit is innovative software developed to integrate all areas of communication within a company. It collaborates with Gmail software and streamlines project management. An individual can share an email with others and monitor the progress of various assignments — all within a Gmail inbox.
Labels allow the project manager to delegate assignments, and tracking features help to keep the project going full steam ahead.
2. Job Scheduling
If you’re working for a company that wants to minimize over- or under-scheduling, maximize work efficiency, and utilize all your resources, then look into improving your job scheduling. ORSYP’s job scheduling software offers a scalable approach to managing employees.
It gives real-time updates to its users, while insuring auditing standards are met. Job-scheduling software is an innovative way to ensure maximum production from your most important assets, your employees.
To be successful and efficient, businesses need to be fully aware of their surroundings. This includes knowing the economic climate. It can be difficult staying on top of the varying situations, but luckily technology has solved this problem through the use of applications.
There are several apps that easily display the current stock market situation and many of which provide understandable explanations. This will help any business prepare for fluctuations in the economy and adjust accordingly.
4. Cloud Storage
There are several available cloud storage programs that greatly improve workflow efficiency. With applications like DropBox, Google Drive, Soonr, and their like, cloud storage is a perfect solution for the hectic work place. It allows people in the office to simultaneously work on documents and share them with anyone who’s connected to the storage network.
Employees can edit, share, ad save documents to the cloud storage and then access them anywhere on a tablet, computer, or smartphone. This capability is unprecedented, and companies are just beginning to recognize the benefits of using cloud storage.
The days of company managers traveling to obscure lands for business meetings are now a thing of the past. Advances in video conferencing have revolutionized the way we hold meetings. Owners no longer have to waste funds traveling and staying in hotels, they can easily communicate with people from across the world in the comfort of their office.
This is streamlining productivity because it allows a manger to meet with multiple clients in a personal manner building strength in those relationships. It also allows them to devote more time to the company because they do not have to travel as much. Video Conferencing is an excellent innovation in business efficiency.
An inefficient company is likely to struggle, especially in today’s competitive market. Companies need to take any steps they can to ensure productive expenditures. From video conferencing and job scheduling to accessible storage, technology has developed many useful innovations.
What other business innovations do you know of that can improve efficiency?