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Archive for the ‘economics’ category

Oct 21, 2017

Chinese and Chinese-American billionaires’ philanthropy rising at ‘astounding’ rate

Posted by in category: economics

That the surge in philanthropy is a natural consequence of the rapid wealth creation was a sentiment echoed by a number of the high-net-worth individuals speaking at the conference, including Ronnie Chan and John Long, founder and CEO of investment company Highridge Partners. China is now home to 609 billionaires, more than the 552 in the US.


Chinese entrepreneurs in China itself, Hong Kong and America are giving back to society in ways unheard of even a few years ago, with Ronnie and Gerald Chan and Li Ka-shing among the big donors.

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 08 October, 2017, 6:45pm.

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Oct 20, 2017

Bootstrapping the Solar System Economy

Posted by in categories: economics, robotics/AI, space travel

Centauri Dreams returns with an essay by long-time contributor Alex Tolley. If we need to grow a much bigger economy to make starships possible one day, the best way to proceed should be through building an infrastructure starting in the inner Solar System and working outward. Alex digs into the issues here, starting with earlier conceptions of how it might be done, and the present understanding that artificial intelligence is moving at such a clip that it will affect all of our ventures as we transform into a truly space-faring species. Under the microscope here is a company called SpaceFab, as Alex explains below, and the potential of ISRU — in situ resource utilization. Emerging out of all this is a new model for expansion.

by Alex Tolley

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Oct 19, 2017

China aims to outspend the world in artificial intelligence, and Xi Jinping just green lit the plan

Posted by in categories: economics, robotics/AI

The inclusion of technology in the leader’s most important address in an official imprimatur that underscores the continued push by China’s top leaders to identify new pillars for an economy struggling to maintain its rapid growth amid overcapacity and rising debt.


China’s State Council laid out goals in July to build a domestic artificial intelligence industry worth nearly US$150 billion in the next few years, and to make the country a “innovation centre for AI” by 2030. Xi’s speech gave the official imprimatur to the plan.

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 18 October, 2017, 6:56pm.

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Oct 18, 2017

Cities compete to become Japan’s Silicon Valley

Posted by in categories: economics, electronics

Every modern economy wants its own version of Silicon Valley and in Japan the urge to find or create one is just as strong. Although the country’s pedigree as an innovator is not in doubt, rapidly adapting to the digital age has proven challenging for its once-mighty consumer electronics companies.


Fukuoka, Kyoto and Tokyo’s Shibuya district are all staking their claim.

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Oct 15, 2017

The Future May Owe Itself to Blockchain Technology. Here’s Why

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, computing, economics, internet, satellites

Sending satellites into space is going to continue to get cheaper since SpaceX proved it could reliably launch refurbished rockets. This is going to open up space exploration to more entities allowing for the continued democratization of space. Other technological advances could make a global space centered sharing economy a real possibility.

The rise of the internet and the ubiquity of mobile computing devices have changed everything from travel and shopping to politics – think Uber, Amazon, and Twitter.

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Oct 8, 2017

Japan brings out the bazooka in AI war with China

Posted by in categories: economics, government, robotics/AI

China may have the clear lead in the development of artificial intelligence (AI) systems in the region, but Japan’s government, realising how vital the sector is to its economic future, has intervened in the hopes of levelling the playing field.

Japan announced in late August that it is planning to invest billions of yen to fund next-generation semiconductors and other technologies critical to AI development.


Billions of yen in public investment could help firms innovate, but analysts say the nation may never catch up with China and the US, global tech leaders that show no signs of slowing down.

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Oct 6, 2017

No Inflation? Technology May Have Left it Back in the 20th Century

Posted by in categories: economics, finance, robotics/AI

These are a tiny fraction of the examples of how our economy differs from the 20th century industrial economy. Similar changes are under way in the developing world, as labor gives way to robotics and basic goods become affordable and accessible to the planet’s billions. Given those changes, why would 20th century models of prices and rates and money supply work as they used to work?

We like to believe that there are “laws of economics” and past patterns to guide us, but, as Yellen indicated, there is now “considerable uncertainty.” It may feel safer to trust that past patterns will reassert themselves. But maybe policymakers should weigh more heavily the chance that the patterns have changed.


The Federal Reserve takes a 20th-century approach to managing a 21st-century economy.

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Oct 2, 2017

An Earth-Sized Space Shield to Protect Us From Solar Storms Is Less Crazy Than It Sounds

Posted by in categories: economics, particle physics, satellites

Every 100 years or so, our Sun gives off a great big belch that sends an intense wave of charged particles towards Earth. This wasn’t a problem in the past, but our high-tech civilization is now disturbingly vulnerable to these solar storms. A new study quantifies the economic risks posed by these extreme solar storms, while also proposing a super-futuristic solution to the problem: an Earth-sized shield built in outer space.

The term “solar storm” is used to identify the various nasties the Sun can hurl our way, including x-rays, charged particles, and magnetized plasma. In 1859, a series of powerful coronal mass ejections (CMEs) hit our planet head on, disrupting telegraph stations and causing widespread communication outages. If we were to be hit by an equally powerful solar storm today, it would knock out satellites and electrical grids, disrupting global communications, transportation, and supply chains. Total worldwide losses could reach up to $10 trillion, with recovery taking many years.

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Sep 30, 2017

Investment: GomSpace to establish space company in Luxembourg

Posted by in categories: economics, government, satellites

GomSpace Group, a company listed on the Nasdaq First North Premier exchange, and the Luxembourg Economy Ministry agreed in principle to establish in the country a company focused on satellite operations and data processing and distribution.

By 2021 the company could employ up to 50 full-time staff, GomSpace said in a statement. The ministry will provide funding through its Luxembourg space programme as well as grants for research and development that will happen in the country, it said.

“By choosing the Grand-Duchy for their international expansion, GomSpace acknowledges the substantial efforts of the government over the last years to put in place the necessary measures to support the continued strengthening and diversification of its space sector,” Economy Minister Etienne Schneider said.

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Sep 27, 2017

Will artificial intelligence mean the end of jobs?

Posted by in categories: computing, disruptive technology, economics, robotics/AI, singularity

Will any of the jobs that exist today still be around in 20 years? Fast Future’s Steve Wells, Alexandra Whittington and Rohit Talwar explore whether automation is destined to rewrite all our futures.


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