Box of Amazing: Magic Leap, biohacking diabetes, fintech fad, voice shopping fail  
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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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This week Donald Trump announced the creation of the Space Force, Elon Musk plans to take Tesla private, and we were all worried that Facebook was working with banks with our data (it is, but not like that). Oh, and Samsung announced a 1 terabyte beast of a phone.  As always, some of these headlines might have seemed unfathomable years ago, but this is the news of the day. Enjoy the week. Onward! - Rahim  

What's Amazing?
The goggles are weird, futuristic, and surprisingly wearable — but has Magic Leap’s technology caught up to its ambitions?
Mixed Magic: Ever since Magic Leap came onto the scene with its vision of augmented and mixed reality, we have been waiting for the device that changes the world. Their device came out this week, and it's very much an alpha product. It's safe to say that most reviewers were underwhelmed simply because it was hyped up so much. That doesn't mean an augmented reality headset won't change things in years to come, it just means that we are still a few years off. If you're interested in where AR has brought us, check out the video review above and check out the link.   Link
Biohacking Diabetes: Some inspiring biohackers have used a security flaw to bypass the $8.3 billion insulin delivery business with a cobbled-together artificial pancreas to create a $250 biohack that’s revolutionizing life with diabetes. For a fraction of the price of its FDA-approved equivalent, users say they’re happier with an insulin-regulating system that combines a pump, a glucose monitor, a smartphone app, and a small Bluetooth-equipped computer, called a RileyLink. "Although no users have reported a disastrous malfunction, trusting your life (or your child’s) to a DIY pancreas carries obvious risks. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is years away from approving a comparably flexible and automated rig for sale. “You’ve got a group that is circumventing all of the controls that are in place,” So far, though, the rough-and-tumble version is way ahead of the market. Apple Inc. and Eli Lilly & Co. have hired DIYers, and Medtronic’s latest FDA-approved product can now do most of the things the Farnsworths’ system can—for $7,000, before insurance. It’s not hard to understand why diabetics and their loved ones might opt for the [cheaper] model” Link
Fad of Fintech: The promise of digital payments was where fintech began. We're past that now and so the question remains - is there growth within the fintech sector? Last week I asked the question of consolidation of point of sale for the end consumer. Looking into the finance industry, it appears as if it is as disparate as ever, but for good reason. Each area within finance represents an industry in its own right. Look at payments, lending, wealth, insurance, real estate and crypto to really get a feel for what's going on. The important point to note - the incumbents aren't doing any of the disruption. Link
Voice Shopping is not happening: ....yet. Is it a surprise that no one buys anything using Alexa yet? "Some numbers published in a report from The Information reveal that very few owners of Alexa-powered devices use them for shopping. Of about 50 million Alexa users, only about 100,000 reportedly bought something via voice interface more than once. It’s not exactly surprising, but it may still harm the narrative of conversational commerce that Amazon and others are trying to advance." Why is voice shopping not happening? Is it trust in the medium? I'd venture that we haven't yet found the right way to feedback the right information to the purchaser in a way that appears quick and trustworthy. But that time is coming. Link
Amazing News Nuggets
What's amazing?

"It was going to be the factory of the future. Dubbed the “Alien Dreadnought,” Tesla’s new manufacturing facility in Fremont, California, was designed to be fully automated — no humans need apply. If all went well, AI-powered robots would enable the company to achieve a weekly production of 5,000 Model 3 electric cars to keep up with burgeoning demand. But Tesla fell far short of that mark, manufacturing just 2,000 vehicles a week. The problem, as the company painfully discovered, was that full automation wasn’t everything it was cracked up to be. According to CEO Elon Musk, the sophisticated robots actually slowed down production instead of speeding it up."

Source: Why Even AI-Powered Factories Will Have Jobs for Humans

"By the end of 2018, chicken grown in a bioreactor–from cells, rather than an actual chicken–may be on the menu in some restaurants. A burger is coming by 2021. A new survey suggests that most Americans may be willing to eat it."

Source: Most Americans will happily try eating lab-grown “clean meat”

"The gig-economy ecosystem was supposed to represent the promised land, striking a harmonious egalitarian balance between supply and demand: consumers could off-load the drudgery of commuting or grocery shopping, while workers were set free from the Man. “Set your own schedule,” touts the Uber-driver Web site; “Be your own boss,” tempts Lyft; “Make an impact on people’s lives,” lures Instacart. These companies have been wildly successful: Uber, perhaps the most notorious, is also the most valuable start-up in the U.S., reportedly worth $72 billion. Lyft is valued at $11 billion, and grocery delivery start-up Instacart is valued at just over $4 billion. In recent months, however, a spate of lawsuits has highlighted an alarming by-product of the gig economy—a class of workers who aren’t protected by labor laws, or eligible for benefits provided to the rest of the nation’s workforce—evident even to those outside the bubble of Silicon Valley. A July report commissioned by the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission found that 85 percent of New York City’s Uber, Lyft, Juno, and Via drivers earn less than $17.22 an hour. When the California Supreme Court ruled in May that delivery company Dynamex must treat its gig workers like full-time employees, Eve Wagner, an attorney who specializes in employment litigation, predicted to Wired, “The number of employment lawsuits is going to explode.”"

Source: “What Have We Done?”: Silicon Valley Engineers Fear They've Created a Monster | Vanity Fair
Amazing Links Worth Your Attention
Below is a selection of recommended reading that you can get by following Box of Amazing on Twitter.
Tech Links

SoundCloud on the blockchain? Audius raises $5.5M to decentralize music Link

The World Bank is preparing for the world's first blockchain bond Link

Silicon Valley: Big Tech prepares for its second act Link

America Needs a Blockchain Strategy ASAP Link

AI can now tell your boss what skills you lack—and how you can get them Link

Disney’s Streaming Service Starts to Come Into Focus Link

China growing up without Google, Facebook, or Twitter. Link

Is Getting Our News From Smart Speakers a Threat to Media Diversity? Link
Amazing Life Links
Why You Should Get Good at Small Talk Link

What does immersing yourself in a book do for your brain Link

How to Do. One. Thing. At. A. Time Link

20 Years of Wisdom From Amazon's Jeff Bezos Link

Stop Drinking Soda -- Here's Why and How You Should Quit Link
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