Monthly Archives: August 2015

Uber Explained

Description: Uber and black cars and taxis, oh my! The latest video in our Mashable Explains series takes a look at how Uber works for both employer and consumer.

Source: Mashable.com

Date: Oct 9, 2014
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Questions for discussion:

1.  Describe Uber?
2.  Would you use Uber? Why?
3.  Is Uber an example of dis-intermediation? explain

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Growth in the ‘Gig Economy’ Fuels Work Force Anxieties

Description: Uber — which directly employs fewer than 4,000 of the more than 160,000 people in the United States who depend on it for at least part of their livelihood — and similar companies pose a challenge to longstanding notions of what it means to hold a job.

Source: http://www.nytimes.com

Date: July 12, 2015

 

File illustration picture showing the logo of car-sharing service app Uber on a smartphone next to the picture of an official German taxi sign in Frankfurt, September 15, 2014. A Frankfurt court earlier this month instituted a temporary injunction against Uber from offering car-sharing services across Germany. San Francisco-based Uber, which allows users to summon taxi-like services on their smartphones, offers two main services, Uber, its classic low-cost, limousine pick-up service, and Uberpop, a newer ride-sharing service, which connects private drivers to passengers - an established practice in Germany that nonetheless operates in a legal grey area of rules governing commercial transportation.    REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach/Files  (GERMANY - Tags: BUSINESS EMPLOYMENT CRIME LAW TRANSPORT)

As it happens, though, Uber is not so much a labor-market innovation as the culmination of a generation-long trend. Even before the founding of the company in 2009, the United States economy was rapidly becoming an Uber economy writ large, with tens of millions of Americans involved in some form of freelancing, contracting, temping or outsourcing.
The decades-long shift to these more flexible workplace arrangements, the venture capitalist Nick Hanauer and the labor leader David Rolf argue in the latest issue of Democracy Journal, is a “transformation that promises new efficiencies and greater flexibility for ‘employers’ and ‘employees’ alike, but which threatens to undermine the very foundation upon which middle-class America was built.”      Read Rest of Story

Questions for discussion:

1.What is the “Uberization of the economy”?

2. Wha tare the benefits of the the Uberization of the economy?

3.  What are the threats of the the Uberization of the economy?

 

The Real Threat Posed by Powerful Computers

Description: Elon Musk called artificial intelligence “our greatest existential threat,” and equated making machines that think with “summoning the demon.”

Source: http://www.nytimes.com

Date: July 11, 2015

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But if the human race is at peril from killer robots, the problem is probably not artificial intelligence. It is more likely to be artificial stupidity. The difference between those two ideas says much about how we think about computers.

In the kind of artificial intelligence, or A.I., that most people seem to worry about, computers decide people are a bad idea, so they kill them. That is undeniably bad for the human race, but it is a potentially smart move by the computers.    Read Rest of Story

Questions for discussion:

1.Should ethical standards be put in place before we allow industry to develop A.I. any further? Why or Why Not??

2. What benefits can you see with using A.I. as a company?

3.  If your company decided on a tactic of using A.I.  would it give your firm a competitive advantage?  Explain why or why not?