Tag: technology

The Rise of a Superpower

Over the past two decades China has successfully transformed itself into a global technology superpower. It now accounts for 20% of total world R&D spending, publishes more academic papers than any country apart from the United States, and is home to the world’s most valuable unicorn.

 

Amidst China’s technology boom a list of titans have emerged including Tencent, Alibaba, and Baidu. China’s Titans’, although dwarfed by the US Tech Giants in terms of revenue and users, continue to post exceptional growth figures with much potential still to fulfil. In this article, we explore China’s technology ecosystem, the infrastructure and how some of China’s most promising companies compare to those in the US.

 


Passwords have long been the default option for verifying a user's identity. However, the sheer volume of them can be difficult to remember and they are increasingly susceptible to being stolen. While on work experience Ciaran Hollebrand (Yr10 student) from St. Mary's Catholic School explored the advancing technologies in biometric identification that are becoming an emerging replacement.

Recent advancements in the biometric identification and verification industry have made sure that it is almost impossible to bypass the extreme accuracy of a biometric identification device. Soon it will be as easy as picking up your phone or holding your device to unlock it.    

Bill Gates once said, “We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten”, this is likely to be the case with blockchain in financial services. 


For a short introduction to blockchain see our previous article “Will blockchain continue to disrupt?”

Blockchain technology can facilitate trustless consensus across all industries. Amber Magson (Yr12 student) whilst on Work Experience from the Bishop Stortford College decided to look into how Charities can benefit from this technology and Ethereum's Smart Contracts.

 

Whilst on work experience Alex Ainsworth (Yr11 student) from The Bishop's Stortford College explored the growing phenomenon of autonomous vehicles.

In 1908, the Ford Motor Company created the world’s first mass produced automobile, the model T. In 2016 Ford announced its plan to have fully autonomous vehicles in operation by 2021.  As such, with the demise of driving seemingly on the horizon, this raises many questions

Despite the slow down of global internet growth, half the population are now online (3.6bn). 

Mary Meeker's annual internet trends report is always a highly anticipated slide deck (294 slides) on understanding the tech industry.

 

TL;DR- Here we share 20 key takeaways from this year's report summarised by Techcrunch.

The full report can be downloaded here

 

I've been delighted to participate as a speaker at several events so far this year. Here's a selection of photos and a list of the networks I've attended:  

Recent reports show that 4 billion people (over half the world's population) are now online, with 250 million joining for the first time in 2017. Whilst on work experience Year 12 student Molly Dorman from Birchwood High School explored the way technology has revolutionised how we now communicate and its global implications.

The latest advancements in human-like robots have led many to reflect on the future of AI, robotics and the governing ethics. Rachel Gbolaru Yr12 student from The Bishops Stortford High School explored many unanswered questions they pose whilst on work experience at Delta2020.

At an IT conference in late 2017, the artificially intelligent humanoid robots, Sophia, was granted citizenship by Saudi Arabia, and became the first ‘non-human’ to have a nationality. Sophia was appointed the UN’s first non-human “innovation champion.” Although most observers saw this act as more of a publicity stunt than a meaningful legal recognition, some found this gesture as openly disparaging human rights and the law. This controversial issue has raised some very important questions that are yet to be answered. Should robots be granted rights? What kind of rights should they be given? 

Whilst on work experience Year 11 student Emily Bond from the Bishop Stortford College researched the future possibilities of Space technology. She has produced a timely article in light of recent news that the UK Space Agency is giving Highlands and Islands Enterprise £2.5m towards the development of the first UK spaceport to be hosted in Sutherland, Scotland.

Each week, the Invested Investor focus on a theme discussed by their entrepreneurs and  Invested Investors.

This week, they are celebrating the achievements of their women investors and entrepreneurs despite the many challenges!

'I don't think it's the girls aren't interested, I think it's schools and parents are not encouraging girls to think that these subjects are relevant,' explains Simon Thorpe, the serial investor who champions for more Women in investment!

While on work experience, Ross Mcgowan of Bishop Stortford College looked into the role the cloud is playing in the digital revolution.

What is “The Cloud?”

The cloud is formally known as cloud computing. It refers to storing and accessing data and programs over the Internet instead of locally stored on a computer's hard drive. Therefore “the cloud” is simply a metaphor for the Internet.

The majority of people use a cloud computing system on a daily basis e.g. any email which can be accessed from the internet can be considered cloud computing. By 2017, it is forecast that enterprise spending on the cloud will reach $235.1 billion.

Cloud computing spending

 

The North of England has long been at the heart of British innovation since the industrial revolution. Whilst on work experience Luke Cooper (Yr12 student) from The Bishop's Stortford High School looked further into the new emerging digital ecosystem of the Northern Powerhouse.


The digital revolution in the North is growing 4 times faster than the non-digital sectors. In the Northern Powerhouse area (highlighted red on map) major cities such as Manchester and Liverpool the have a rapid digital economy growth rate of 13% and 7% respectively between 2011 – 2014.

SAGE podcasts and vodcasts span a wide range of subject areas including business, humanities, social sciences, and science, technology, and medicine. 

 

Therefore I was delighted to be a guest on the @SageNAmerica Advice Podcast with @edkless to talk about why I invest in early stage growth companies.

The translation and interpretation industry has doubled in the past seven years, advancements in translation technology have enabled translators and interpreters to improve their performance. While on work experience, Wendy Cowen (Yr11 student) from The Bishop’s Stortford High College explored how translation technology is breaking down language barrier

 

Companies from all industry sectors understand the importance of investment in Artificial Intelligence (AI). It has the potential to transform the way we live and the ability to tackle inherent societal challenges. Whilst on work experience from the Herts and Essex High School, Yr10 student Emily Hollins explored its future impact and opportunities. 

I am delighted to be a judge for Cambridge Wireless on their 9th annual Discovering Start-ups competition on Monday 17th September 2018.

Click on the title to see what I look for in a Start-up.

Microsoft research has highlighted that there is just a 5 year window to ignite STEM passion in UK schoolgirls before interest markedly drops off (between the ages of 16-17). Charlotte Brown from the Bishops Stortford High School is a keen Yr12 Maths student; she has recognised in her studies that girls are significantly underrepresented in STEM, therefore wanted to research why and what is being done to help rectify the situation.

Olivia Singh (Yr10 student) from the Herts and Essex High School explored the levels of technological development in Japan and China whilst on work experience, to ascertain which is the emergent superpower competing with the USA. 

With the implementation of 5G currently underway in the UK, Charlotte Cavanagh Yr10 student from The Herts & Essex High School wanted to explore the potential of this emerging technology and how it will affect our lives going forward.

The advances in technology in the past 40 years have been more drastic than we could’ve ever expected. From 1G, launched in the 1980s, finally allowing mobile voice calls, to 2G giving us SMS, to 3G which brought mobile browsing, and then to 4G with much higher speeds and the ability to make conference calls, watch HD TV and use gaming services all on our mobile phones. However, 5G has surpassed these earlier technological advancements that will change our world more than ever before.