Box of Amazing: Pay Monthly for Close Friendship  
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Box of Amazing is a weekly digest curated by Rahim covering emerging technology, trends and extraordinary articles, hand picked to broaden your mind and challenge your thinking.

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Editor's Note
My recommendations for the week:

1. The Daredevil Unicorns: Why WeWork, Juul, and Uber Play With Fire Link
2. THE World University Rankings 2020: results announced Link
3. The climate crisis explained in 10 charts Link
4. What parents need to teach kids about deepfake videos Link
5. WeWork and the Great Unicorn Delusion Link
6. Mastering the duality of digital: How companies withstand disruption Link
7. Why Some People Become Lifelong Readers Link
8. How I Finally Learned to Sleep Link
9. 11 Books That Will Change Your Thinking on Thinking Link
10. That Will Never Work: The Birth of Netflix and the Amazing Life of an Idea. Link

Have a great week!

Onward! - Rahim
 
What's Amazing
 
1. The Future of Work
"They tell us the robots are coming. Burger flipping robots. Construction robots. Truck driving robots. Even robots that drive your car. What are we poor humans to do? Will there be any jobs left? We might as well all retire right now. " Read this excellent report from MIT. Give yourself 5 minutes to at least skim the PDF.  Link
2. New Business Model: Pay Monthly for Close Friendship
Influencer culture has normalized charging money for all kinds of intimacy. Gabi Abrao, better known as @sighswoon on Instagram, is “developing a language with the invisible.” Her page is half memes, half photos of her—eating fresh fruit, or trying out a metal detector, or posing in a museum bathroom wearing an incredible maxi dress, or staring sleepily into the middle distance in a satin pollution mask—often accompanied by poetic text about the past, the present, and the universe. She has close to 94,000 followers, about 400 of whom are her “Close Friends,” a privilege won by paying $3.33 a month on Patreon. Those followers get access to exclusive “rants, theories, and personal updates,” including “silly details” of Abrao’s love life, big ideas about “existence and wellness,” and poetry and prose from her personal archives. She’s one of many who have figured out that the Instagram feature—originally intended as something like an image-based inner-circle group text—can also be used to make some extra money.  
3. Killer Robot worries
A new generation of autonomous weapons or “killer robots” could accidentally start a war or cause mass atrocities, a former top Google software engineer has warned. Laura Nolan, who resigned from Google last year in protest at being sent to work on a project to dramatically enhance US military drone technology, has called for all AI killing machines not operated by humans to be banned. Nolan said killer robots not guided by human remote control should be outlawed by the same type of international treaty that bans chemical weapons. Unlike drones, which are controlled by military teams often thousands of miles away from where the flying weapon is being deployed, Nolan said killer robots have the potential to do “calamitous things that they were not originally programmed for”. Link
4. Space Hotels
For many people, getting away from it all means decamping to a cabin in the woods or a house by the beach. Soon there may be another option: lifting off to a hotel serenely orbiting high above the planet. Though space hotels have long belonged only to the world of make-believe, that's about to change. NASA says it will open the International Space Station (ISS) to tourists as early as 2020. A Houston-based startup called Orion Span has proposed a four-guest space hotel called Aurora Station that would open in 2022. And now the Gateway Foundation, a startup in Alta Loma, California, is planning what may be the most ambitious space hotel project of all: a sort of space-based cruise ship big enough to hold a pair of hotels that would accommodate 100 guests and perhaps three times as many crew members. The facility would feature artificial gravity and have restaurants, gyms, sports arenas and concert venues as well as spaceplanes ready to whisk guests back to Earth in case of an emergency. Link
5. The Four Horsemen of the Restaurant Apocalypse?
Uber Eats, Postmates, GrubHub and Doordash are the main players in what is going on in food wars. This report reminds me of what it was like when publishing and music were being disrupted. Industry is more complicated now, but it clarifies a next step route at what might happen next.  Link
6. No Innovation
Innovation as a discipline is nothing new; innovation techniques such as design thinking and the lean start-up methodology have been widely adopted. Yet, according to a survey in KPMG’s Benchmarking Innovation Impact 2020 study, 59% of respondents said their innovation efforts are ad hoc or emerging, with fewer than 13% having reached a stage where their innovation programs are perceived to be strategic or integrated.
At the same time, innovation efforts are shifting from invention and R&D to full transformation. In the past, innovation portfolios were allocated 70% incremental, 20% adjacent and 10% transformational, however, results from the wider population indicted 50% emphasis on adjacent and transformational categories. Taking it a step further—more mature companies were at 60% investment in these areas. Link
7. Drug Drone Delivery is happening
Wing, the drone delivery company that started its life within the Google  X lab before spinning out into its own thing under the Alphabet umbrella, is prepping for takeoff. The company announced that it’s launching a test program in Virginia with Walgreens,  FedEx  and local retailer Sugar Magnolia. As part of the program, Wing will be able to deliver kids’ snacks (goldfish, water, gummy bears and yogurt were mentioned as examples) and over-the-counter meds (like Tylenol or cough drops) from Walgreens, select packages from FedEx Express and sweets and stationary from Sugar Magnolia. Link
8. Never be anonymous again
"Facial recognition is only the tip of the creepy surveillance iceberg. If strict regulation is brought in to govern the use of facial recognition, it is possible we may simply see a switch to one, or several, of the other forms of surveillance technologies currently being developed. Many are equally if not more invasive than facial recognition – and potentially even harder to regulate. This report looks at some of what might be coming down the pipeline." From how you walk to how you smell to bum detection - yes, bum detection. Link
9. Nunchi: The Korean Secret to Happiness
"Nunchi is the subtle art of gauging other people's thoughts, feelings and needs in order to improve your relationships through deeper trust, harmony and cooperation. Known as the Korean superpower, some people even go so far as to say nunchi is how Korean people can read minds – though there’s nothing supernatural about it. Nunchi is a part of daily life in Korea, with Korean parents teaching their children about its importance on a par with lessons such as ‘Look both ways before crossing the street’ and ‘Don’t hit your sister.’ ‘Why do you have no nunchi?!’ is a common parental chastisement." Link
10. Anti balding Baseball Cap
If you are losing your hair or considering a hair transplant, then it might be time to consider zapping your scalp with electricity.  Link
This email contains the ten most important stories that I have read this week. 
You can get my long list of recommended reading by following me (@rahim) on Twitter.
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Box of Amazing is a project that I started to share my thoughts with like-minded individuals who are interested in the future world that we are fast approaching. This newsletter now has readers spanning the globe from San Francisco to Tokyo and across multiple industries including strategy consultancy houses (McKinsey to Bain), from all the FAAANG companies (Facebook to Alphabet), from startups to scaleups, from unicorns to brand new companies as well as people just interested in staying ahead of the game. If you enjoy it, please share it with your friends, family, co-workers, enemies, competitors, pets, potential love interests and others who are interested in learning about the emerging technology and trends that will affect us all in this lifetime. 

Thank you for reading

- Rahim

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