Box of Amazing: You gave them the kids' data?  
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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
I had a lot of follow up from the designer baby story. It seemed to have struck a chord with many of you. The Atlantic broke down the 15 most damning details if you want a follow-up.  Also, despite this CRISPR baby controversy, Harvard University will begin gene-editing sperm. 

If you have kids, designer or otherwise, or if you care about data, I hope you'll read the story below on kids data. We are moving to a world where everything is tracked, and we are sharing that data voluntarily. What happens when you crunch the data? What happens when all your devices conspire together to tell the AI overlords that you had a slightly higher blood pressure because you went into your overdraft early and you're prime for a loan because you have been eyeing up that Christmas present that your kid has texted you and you have been googling for month hoping that the price will go down? What happens when Amazon know that by creating a bespoke lightening deal for you for that present that expires in 24 hours, it can guarantee a sale? What happens when technology conspires to run our lives for us, creating popularity and using FOMO against us? I'd argue that we're probably there already.  

Have a great week!

Onward! - Rahim
 
Must Reads
Land of the “Super Founders“— A Data-Driven Approach to Uncover the Secrets of Billion Dollar Startups Link

We’re No Longer in Smartphone Plateau. We’re in the Smartphone Decline. Link


Now locked in head-on rivalry, the US once helped China kick-start its science and technology ambitions Link

When AI is the Product: The Rise of AI-Based Consumer Apps Link

Uber Is Headed for a Crash Link

The Bloomberg 50 (the people in business,entertainment, finance, politics, and technology and science whose 2018 accomplishments were particularly noteworthy and the 20 people you might be reading about in 2019) Link

 
What's Amazing?
Tech predictions for 2019: Following on from last week, I'd recommend Inc's predictions on Tech, having spoketn to experts in various fields. I like the one about Amazon: "In the past year, Amazon has entered new spaces like grocery and health care, has hinted at venturing into banking, and is even selling live Christmas trees--so what's next? If you look at consumer share-of-wallet as an indicator, one other area that's ripe for Amazon expansion is hospitality. They've just started dipping their toes into local services like house cleaning and handymen. I see great potential value for Amazon to venture into travel and restaurants and leverage its enormous customer base to capture a share of the hospitality spend in 2019."  Link
The Digital Divide: With almost universal smartphone ubiquity, you'd think we would be moving on to other changes in the society, but there exists a huge number that don't yet have broadband coverage, or data. This creates a sort of new underclass, the haves and the have nots. "Fast internet service is crucial to the modern economy, and closing the digital divide is seen as a step toward shrinking the persistent gaps in economic opportunity, educational achievement and health outcomes in America. In some areas with spotty or no service, children do their homework in Wi-Fi-equipped buses or fast-food restaurants, small businesses drive to internet hot spots to send sales pitches and medical records are transported by hand on thumb-drive memory sticks." Taking this division further means that many will have worse opportunities in life. A couple of hundred years ago, sanitation was one of the bigger issues, followed by clean water, electricity, and now connectivity. And now, I'd suppose that some could drop water first before giving up connectivity. Such is the importance of technology in society, that without access to tech, you are less advantaged than those that are benefiting from it. Just as long as you don't become a slave to the machine.  Link
100 Greatest Inventions of 2018: Popular Science have put together their best of the best - and I'll admit, a few missed my radar - like the Iron Man-esque jet suit but it's also a great recap of things we take for granted and the very fact that we are living in an age where astonishing things are being built. If you are a geek, you will love the list even if you can't afford them all. My favourite is the floating AI Astronaut Assistant - because that's all I want for Christmas.   Link
You gave them your kid's data: Today's kids are most at risk because they have the largest digital footprint in history. That footprint began when the mother started taking prenatal vitamins or when the kid's parents shared they were pregnant on Facebook or shared their first baby pictures on WhatsApp. That data exists and continues to grow whether that's Nest watching the kids at home or understanding purchase preferences across Amazon and Google. What are the culprits? Indeed who are the biggest culprits? Sharenting - parents giving away more data then they need will lead to an identity fraud apocalypse in the next ten years. What about sharing of location data on posts, smart devices tracking movement, smart speakers understanding tone? “There is much less understanding of how personal data gathered in childhood might be used to shape an individual’s experiences and prospects in the long term — for better or for worse. Could data about a child’s language development and early educational performance at age four play some role in their university application outcomes? ... Could personal health data affect their ability to take out insurance in future?” These are questions that don’t yet have answers. "    Link
Quotes Worth Pondering
According to McKinsey & Company, 80 percent of all packages will be delivered autonomously in the next 10 years. So while people may not be quite ready to hop in an AV themselves, if one can deliver some paper towels to your doorstep, the thinking seems to be, why not? 

The first self-driving car you use will most likely carry your groceries, not you
Amazing Links Worth Your Attention
Below is a selection of recommended reading that you can get by following Box of Amazing on Twitter.
Top of the News
These Confidential Charts Show Why Facebook Bought WhatsApp Link

Walmart will soon use hundreds of A.I. robot janitors to scrub the floors of US stores  Link

These Confidential Charts Show Why Facebook Bought WhatsApp 
Link

Bose’s $199 audio-based AR sunglasses are available for preorder Link

Netflix, Prime, Blue Apron: How subscription businesses are taking over Link
Tech, Science and the Future
Your smartphone’s AI algorithms could tell if you are depressed Link

People are Chill with Robot Brothels: Study Link

Scientists develop 10-minute universal cancer test Link

An Eye-Scanning Lie Detector is Forging a Dystopian Future Link

Tesla will live and die by the Gigafactory Link
Improving Your Life
Studies Say This is What Worry Does to Your Brain.  Link

25 Useful Thinking Tools Link

How to Get Focused for 2019 Link

Why the world is becoming more allergic to food Link

Unlock Your Brain’s Power With The Einstein Technique Link
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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. The numbers of subscribers are growing quickly from all parts of the world. 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 emerging technology and trends that will affect us all in this lifetime. 

Thank you for reading

- Rahim

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