Tag: technology

Safety has always been a concern with lithium ion batteries. Recent news articles published highlight a positive shift away from this technology which piqued an interest whilst on 'virtual' work experience for Patti Mussard, Yr 11 student from The Bishops Stortford College to research further.

In recent years, the primary focus of many car manufacturers has been in developing electric vehicles, powered by rechargeable batteries, as a greener alternative to fuel-powered cars. Just recently, the well-known electric vehicle company Tesla became the world’s most valuable car firm, although, some people are still hesitant about making the switch to electric, as they are concerned about how often they will have to charge and change the battery, how much time it will take, and how much it will cost them. However, with the latest developments in battery tech showing the possibility of a newer, safer, and longer lasting battery, we may be looking at the start of a new generation of electric cars.

 

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.    

 

How things have changed in 10 years. When I started angel investing in 2009 just after the Great Financial Crisis (GFC), I could find revenue generating companies valued at less than £1m. Now an equivalent company would be £5m+. In those 10 years I have invested in 40+ companies, many founded by women. I have been fortunate enough to experience many successes and have learnt to accept failures with 1 or 2 investments out of 10 generating my return. 

 

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?”

Chloe Conway Yr11 student from The Herts and Essex High School chose the evocative topic of globalisation to research whilst on her virtual work experience placement. 

In the modern day, globalisation shares a hand in hand relationship with technology. From technology enabling us to easily communicate with each other, to technology processing our data faster than ever before; technology has sky rocketed globalisation in the recent decades. This somewhat complex phenomenon has led to the world now being called by many as a “global village”. To put it in perspective how far globalisation has developed, would you believe that back then, it took 1000 years for the invention of paper to travel from China to Europe? However now in a matter of seconds, a message can be sent to the other side of the world to whom you may desire, at any time of the day.

 

Whilst robotic use cases have been prevalent in many industries including the military, manufacturing, agriculture and healthcare for quite some time, Sophie O'Flaherty Yr11 student from The Herts and Essex High School was curious to see what a positive and integral role they have played during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Humans are imaginative and for thousands of years have dreamt of new and exciting ways that future generations may lead their lives, and, for over a century, robots have been a big part of that vision. There are in fact more than 2.6 million robots at work in the world today most of which are used for industrial applications, such as electronics manufacture, drug production, welding and much more.

We're increasingly encountering robots in our everyday lives, with robots as well as examples of Artificial Intelligence (AI) being found almost everywhere; robots such as 'Roombas' that clean your home as well as the 'virtual assistant' (your Smartphone) that you’re probably carrying around in your pocket right now!

As you’ll read below, the Covid-19 crisis has shown us the extent to which robots can be utilised. So, while we may not be living on the moon in 2020 our robots can already do some pretty amazing things!

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

 

During Delta2020's inaugural 'virtual' work experience program Yr11 student Alex Gilkes from the Herts and Essex High School decided to research the topic of social media given the current lock-down situation which has forced a global adaptation to a 'new normal'.

In the last two decades, technology has made leaps and bounds in almost every way possible and the rise of social media platforms has been fed as we enter a new hyper-digitised age. There are 3.5 billion social media users worldwide, many of whom who interact with social media daily, yet not many people know the very real risks that come with it. 

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

It is quite probable that you are reading this blog on your phone, yet more than likely that would not have been the case ten years ago! With the rate of technological change ever increasing and only accelerated further by COVID-19 Yr11 it provided student Hannah Beckett from The Bishops Stortford College the opportunity to explore what the next decade in tech will look like.  

From ‘Hover Boards’ to voice activated ‘personal assistants’ one would think that the modern age of technology is certainly in no shortage of variety. Considering the last decade of technology has borne substantial significance in combating the problems of today such as climate change which, thanks to Elon Musk and the four fellow founders of Tesla, has consequently, led to a 3.6 million ton depletion in CO2 globally. Thus, in a world where technology plays such a large role in everybody’s day to day life, it has led me to consider the part it may play over the next ten years. 

 

 

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

 

The Corona pandemic will impact every industry. Whilst most have been hit negatively; there are however some that will benefit or actually be 'born' through this adversity. Therefore, Lucas Griffiths Yr11 student from Malmesbury School, Wiltshire decided to research an alternative option to the traditional Summer Holiday!  

 

To begin, what is Virtual Tourism?  

In brief, it’s a way for someone to travel somewhere with the aid of technology, all without having to take a single step. It comes in a multitude of forms, ranging from something as simple as a guided tour on YouTube, to a fully immersive state-of-the-art virtual reality setup. Virtual tourism refers to a broad spectrum of digitally augmented realities, but the most commonly used devices are computers and VR headsets.

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.

Whilst on virtual work experience Yr 11 student Harry Dong from the Bishops Stortford College explored the explosive growth of Esports accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic.


What is Esports?

Esports, also known as Electronic Sports, is a new-born competitive sport using video games. Esports often consists of organised events or tournaments where professional players face off in the same game individually or as teams. Even though video games have been around since the 1980s, the idea of Esports did not come along until mid-2000s. In the 21st century Esports has been gaining incredible popularity especially among teenagers and young adults through livestreaming on platforms like Twitch and YouTube. We have seen the participation of large companies and organisations; their professional teams and their sponsorships have pushed tournament prize pools and revenues to new heights. By 2010s Esports has developed into one of the largest factors in the video game industry or even the whole entertainment industry, becoming an international phenomenon.

 

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.