Strictly Curious Newsletter №56


Artificial Intelligence: A survey by Microsoft of 800 business leaders drawn equally from eight countries (France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Russia, Switzerland, the UK and the US) found they are increasingly keen on the idea of AI. The survey found that 41% of high-growth companies were already implementing AI, as against only 19% of those defined as low growth. Link

Analysis: Naspers (the $100bn Internet giant you probably hadn’t heard of) relists on Amsterdam Stock Exchange. Link

Future: 7 non-obvious trends shaping the future from Singularity University. Link

AirB&B: American consumers spent more on Airbnb than on Hilton last year. That means Airbnb now owns about 20% of the entire US consumer lodging market. Link

Leadership: The CEO’s guide to taking risks. How to make bold moves without being reckless. Link

Future: What will the world look like in 2035? The RSA’s Future Work Centre has today released research that models four ‘futures of work’ by 2035 — and shows how our warring politicians are nowhere near up to speed on what’s going on. Link

M&A: When unicorns go shopping, M&A is a domestic affair. Link

Creativity: For enhanced creativity, brainstorm ideas, and then let them cook. Link

Fashion: Fast-fashion retailers like Zara and H&M have a new threat: the $24 billion used clothes market. Link

Commerce: Instagram just took advantage of Amazon’s biggest weakness. Amazon’s failure in “discovery shopping” is Instagram’s opportunity, as its users can now shop inside the app. Link

Technology: Airbnb has a hidden-camera problem. The home-rental start-up says it’s cracking down on hosts who record guests. Is it doing enough? Link

Environment: Packaging makes up nearly half of plastic waste. Link

Blog Posts

Is it ever too late to pursue a dream? Dan Stoddard believes there is room in the NBA for a 42-year-old rookie. Link

Private Equity: Private equity keeps on growing. Has it gotten too big for the economy? Link

Interesting Numbers

‘Technoference’: We’re more tired and less productive because of our phones. Study finds problematic phone use getting worse in Australia. One in five women and one in eight men are now losing sleep due to the time they spend on their mobile phones, according to new QUT-led research that has found a jump in ‘technoference’ over the past 13 years. Link

Mobile app usage: YouTube is responsible for 37% of all mobile internet traffic. Link

Video: Billionaires have funded space travel for decades


Lifestyle: Why Apple AirPods came to be everywhere. Link

Filmmaking: The rise of the iPhone auteur. Steven Soderbergh’s ‘High Flying Bird’ is the latest movie to be filmed entirely on a smartphone. While the technique has yet to catch on en masse, its proponents talk about its democratizing and artistically liberating effects — and it could very well be the future of filmmaking. Link

Retail Therapy

VC starter kit. It’s never been easier to look like a VC. Link


“To think is easy. To act is hard. But the hardest thing in the world is to act in accordance with your thinking.”
 (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe)