Readings and Novelties

Lawrence Summers and "The World is Flat"

by Lee Gesmer on January 30, 2008

Lawrence Summers gave his version of a “the world is flat” speech at the SKAGEN conference in Oslo on January 10, 2008. The speech, which covers a bit of everything — the industrial revolution, the rise of capitalism, the environment, the roles of China, India and other emerging economies in the world’s economy, the 2008 presidential election, the subprime crisis, the housing crisis (and more) — is worth a listen. Summers is not a warm and fuzzy guy, and he’s quite controversial; you might not want to spend a semester or two in his classroom or have him as your dissertation advisor. But, he is a bona fide “very smart guy”: Harvard Ph.D in economics, tenured professor at Harvard by age 28, Chief Economist of the World Bank, Secretary of the Treasury, President of Harvard College, and (some think) on the short list of candidates for future Chairman of the Federal Reserve (Bernanke and Summers are almost identical in age).… Read the full article

David Byrne has published a very interesting article in Wired on the various business models in the music industry, and how the Internet and digital music is changing those models and offering artists more opportunities.

David Byrne’s Survival Strategies for Emerging Artists – And Megastars

Where there was one, now there are six: Six possible music distribution models, ranging from one in which the artist is pretty much hands-off to one where the artist does nearly everything. Not surprisingly, the more involved the artist is, the more he or she can often make per unit sold. The totally DIY model is certainly not for everyone – but that’s the point. Now there’s choice. . . .

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Life: What A Concept

by Lee Gesmer on January 15, 2008

Edge has posted as a free online publication the complete transcript of this summer’s Edge event, Life: What a Concept! as a 43,000- word downloadable PDF book.

This is a transcript of an event that took place at Eastover Farm in Bethlehem, CT on Monday, August 27th, 2007. Invited to address the topic “Life: What a Concept!” were Freeman Dyson, J. Craig Venter, George Church, Robert Shapiro, Dimitar Sasselov, and Seth Lloyd. These scientists are some of the most visionary scientific thinkers in the world. Warning: this is heaving going ….

Click here to download the pdf file.

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The Greater Boston Innovation Map

by Lee Gesmer on January 10, 2008

Xconomy has created a Google Map showing the location of each company they have covered in their first six months as a web magazine (125 so far, and counting). The pins are color-coded to indicate software, hardware, energy, life sciences, finance, media and nonprofit. Clicking on a pin on the large map embedded in the article (scroll to the bottom of the article) gives you the address of the company and the Xconomy stories about that company. Very cool ….… Read the full article