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Sustain Weekly Newsletter-16Nov2015

By November 15, 2015 Sustain No Comments


A weekly sustainable tech newsletter from a standing desk. – Nov 16, 2015

Here are the top sustainability news I found interesting this week

The Turners

In Tech News

  • NASA’s Hyper-X program is working to turn blueprints of Skreemr, based on scramjet technology, into a commercial aircraft. A plane that can cruise at 7500 mph and go from New York City to Tokyo in 2 hours.
  • A robot can now pick, identify, sort and place fruits based on type or color. Based on machine vision and software. Industrial automation is going through quiet but definitive change.
  • Fossil bought Misfit, a wearable fitness tracker company for $260 million. Got to see if a wearable will save a watch company. Expect more smart watches from other watchmakers.
  • The subject of management case studies – Betamax is finally going through end of life. Betamax was a better standard than VHS. Classic case of why technology prowess and commercialization are not aligned all the time.

Start you up (week’s start-up stories and insights)

Learn today

What is a ‘Pink Flamingo’?
Pink Flamingos are threats that are overly predictable and dangerous but are conveniently ignored. A classic example is the standoff between India and Pakistan where the risk of conflict exists every day. Pink Flamingos are opposites of ‘Black Swans’ – events that are considered improbable but cause enormous consequences.


Did you know?

  • Eggs are power packed food for weight loss. Yolks too. Also rank high on the Satiety Index.
  • Smoking weed is now a human right in Mexico. Phillip Morris will launch a ‘Marlboro M’ Marijuana Cigarettes in 2016.
  • A synthetic diamond maker is raising capital to make diamonds in a lab. Backed by 10+ celebrities including DiCaprio. You still need VC funds even when you can make diamonds.
  • There is an online breakup marketplace called Breakup Shop that offers breakup notes, emails and calls as a service. Founders say it’s better than bad confrontations or avoidance. I wonder how many repeat customers they will get. I got to admit, it’s got decent pricing.
  • Crayola has launched a new line of coloring books for adults. Adult coloring books topped Amazon’s best sellers last year. They have anti-stress benefits.
  • Indonesia is considering the use of crocodiles to guard prisons. and also tigers and piranhas. They are serious about locking up criminals.
  • SeaWorld in San Diego will end the killer Orca whale shows because of protests against captive marine life.
  • WADA, the anti-doping agency is solving the doping issue with an athlete biological passport. Athletes were outsmarting agencies by their own blood. What it means is that an athlete draws his own blood, stores it in a freezer and after three months reinjects them into the stream, creating more blood. As red blood cells increase, so does the ability to absorb more oxygen. More oxygen with each breath = more energy to burn.

Did you read?

Did you see?

India food startup update
Last week, Shadowfax acquihired Pickingo. I’m mostly done covering the food startup scene. It’ll work in few cases and not in many. I expect some online-only kitchens will emerge in the next year. I think large centralized kitchens and online service might survive more than last mile pure play delivery service over time. The former has better margins. We’ll have to wait and see how this pans or who outlasts whom. I think we have over-analyzed food startups in the last 3-4 weeks. I’m moving on to more interesting markets. If you have a topic suggestion, let me know with a reply.

Open Thought

When you read any article that states you are not the center of the universe because of your relative size with respect to the universe, then it’s a shortsighted view of our existence. Wherever you are is the center because the universe does not have a physical center. Yes, we’re insignificant in size but not in actuality.
News @Arcluster 
Arcluster  is looking to hire 2 interns in the research and marketing functions. If you know an eligible candidate who might be interested, please ask them to check out our careers page to know more about us and why they should join. Follow us on twitter (@arcluster) for the latest news from the company.

Folks, that’s it for last week. Good week ahead!