Sưu tầm – Your computer is using more power than you might realise. Here’s how we can change that | World Economic Forum

An employee uses a computer mouse inside an office in Kiev April 24, 2012.  REUTERS/Gleb Garanich (UKRAINE  - Tags: SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY) - LR2E84P0JP200

Your smartphone is far more powerful than the NASA computers that put Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on the moon in 1969, but it is also an energy hog. In computing, energy use is often considered a secondary problem to speed and storage, but with the rate and direction of technological advancement, it is becoming a growing environmental concern.

When the cryptocurrency mining company Hut 8 opened Canada’s largest bitcoin mining project outside Medicine Hat, Alta., environmentalists sounded the alarm. The plant consumes 10 times more electricity, largely produced by a natural gas-fired power plant, than any other facility in the city.

Globally, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the information, communication and technology (ICT) sectors are forecast to reach the equivalent of 1.4 gigatonnes (billion metric tonnes) of carbon dioxide annually by 2020. That’s 2.7 per cent of global GHGs and roughly double Canada’s total annual greenhouse gas output.

Image: The Climate Group

By designing energy-efficient computer processors we could reduce energy consumption, and we could reduce GHG emissions in places where electricity comes from fossil fuels. As a computer engineer specialized in computer architecture and arithmetic, my colleagues and I are confident these positive effects can be achieved with almost no impact on computer performance or user convenience.

Powerful connections

The Internet of Things (IoT) — made up of the connected computing devices embedded into everyday objects — is already delivering positive economic and social impacts, transforming our societies, the environment and our food supply chains for the better.

These devices are monitoring and reducing air pollution, improving water conservation and feeding a hungry world. They’re also making our homes and businesses more efficient, controlling thermostats, lighting, water heaters, refrigerators and washing machines.

With the number of connected devices set to top 11 billion — not including computers and phones — in 2018, IoT will create big data requiring huge computations.

Making computation more energy efficient would save money and reduce energy use. It would also allow the batteries that provide power in computing systems to be smaller or run longer. In addition, calculations could run faster, so computing systems would generate less heat.

Approximate computing

Today’s computing systems are designed to deliver exact solutions at a high energy cost. But many error-resilient algorithms like image, sound and video processing, data mining, sensor data analysis and deep learning do not require exact answers.

This unnecessary accuracy and excessive energy expenditure is wasteful. There are limitations to human perception — we don’t always need 100 per cent accuracy to be satisfied with the outcome. For example, minor changes in the quality of images and videos often go unnoticed.

Computing systems can take advantage of these limitations to reduce energy use without having a negative impact on the user experience. “Approximate computing” is a computation technique that sometimes returns inaccurate results, making it useful for applications where an approximate result is sufficient.

At the University of Saskatchewan’s computer engineering lab, we are proposing to design and implement these approximate computing solutions, so that they can optimally trade off accuracy and efficiency across software and hardware. When we applied these solutions to a core computing component of the processor, we found that power consumption dropped by more than 50 per centwith almost no drop in performance.

Flexible precision

Nowadays, most personal computers contain a 64-bit standard numerical format. This means that they use a number with 64 digits (either zero or one) to perform all the computations.

3D graphics, virtual reality and augmented reality require the 64-bit format to work. But basic audio and image processing can be done with a 32-bit format and still provide satisfying results. Moreover, deep learning applications can even use 16-bit or 8-bit formatsdue to their error resilience

The shorter the numerical format, the less energy is used to perform the calculation. We can design flexible, yet precise, computing solutions that run different applications using the most appropriate numerical format so that it promotes energy efficiency.

For example, a deep learning application using this flexible computing solution could reduce energy consumption by 15 per cent, according to our preliminary experiment. In addition, the proposed solutions can be reconfigured to simultaneously perform multiple operations requiring low numerical precision and improve performance.

The IoT holds a great deal of promise, but we must also think about the costs of processing all of this data. With smarter, greener processors we could help address environmental concerns and slow or reduce their contributions to climate change.

By Seokbum Ko

Full link: https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/09/how-to-make-computers-faster-and-climate-friendly/

Share – Đứa trẻ bị đánh ngã liên tiếp, thiền sư lại nói rằng đó mới là đàn ông thực sự — Banmaihong’s Blog

Cuộc sống luôn có những thăng trầm, hiếm ai sống có thể cứ mãi thuận buồm xuôi gió. Đôi khi, chúng ta nỗ lực chăm chỉ, mà vẫn gặp phải mọi sự trắc trở thất bại, thực sự cảm thấy rất nản lòng. Tuy nhiên, đó chưa hẳn là điều không tốt. Đứa trẻ bị […]

via Đứa trẻ bị đánh ngã liên tiếp, thiền sư lại nói rằng đó mới là đàn ông thực sự — Banmaihong’s Blog

1. Một xã hội loạn lạc

Sau thời kỳ đất nước thịnh trị, đêm ngủ không cần đóng cửa, lịch sử Trung Quốc bước vào giai đoạn đen tối dưới thời nhà Thương, nhất là vị vua cuối cùng-Trụ Vương.

Theo Tư Mã Thiên, hồi nhỏ Trụ Vương là một người thông minh, thông hiểu kinh sách, vẻ ngoài tráng kiệt như những anh hùng đương thời. Khi mới nắm giữ binh quyền ông rất chăm lo tới phát triển kinh tế đất nước, đánh dẹp các bộ tộc xâm lấn.

Tuy nhiên, sau những năm thịnh trị, Trụ Vương dần sa vào rượu chè, phụ nữ, ít quan tâm đến triều chính. Để thỏa mãn sự ăn chơi sa hoa, vị vua này cho xây “hồ rượu” và “rừng thịt” để thâu đêm suốt sáng vui trong khoái lạc. Thêm vào đó vì nghe lời người vợ Đát Kỷ, Trụ Vương đã tạo ra những hình phạt tàn bạo bậc nhất lịch sử loài người để xử tử những người chống đối.

Ví như sái bồn là một hào nước to và sâu, sau đó được thả các loại rắn độc xuống. Những người phạm tội, bị lột sạch đồ và thả xuống để rắn cắn đến chết.

Bào lạc là một công cụ giết người làm bằng đồng, rỗng ở trong, phía dưới là miệng lò nóng. Người phạm tội sẽ bị buộc vào cột đồng nóng cho đến chết.

Trước những hành động vượt quá sức chịu đựng của dân chúng và triều thần, các tướng thân cận như Tỉ Can, Cơ Tử, Vi Tử bất chấp tính mạng can ngăn Trụ Vương. Trụ Vương không nghe sai người giết Tỉ Can và moi gan, Cơ Tử phải giả điên mới thoát, Vi Tử bỏ trốn khỏi Kinh đô Triều Ca.

2. “Châu chấu đá voi” 5 vạn đánh tan 70 vạn

Trước tình hình nước Thương suy yếu do Trụ Vương chỉ lo ăn chơi, tàn bạo, nhân dân oán thán, Chu Vũ Vương (tức Cơ Phát – con của Tây Bá hầu Cơ Xương ) được sự giúp sức của quân sư lỗi lạc Thái Công Vọng (Khương Tử Nha), các huynh đệ Chu Công Đán, Chiêu Công Thích chuẩn bị quân đội và các điều kiện tấn công vua Trụ.

Vào khoảng thế kỷ XI TCN, Chu Vũ Vương giao quyền thống soái 5 vạn đại quân cho quân sư Thái Công Vọng cùng vượt Hoàng Hà tiến về phía Đông hội quân với các nước chư hầu. Tại Minh Tân, quân của Chu Vũ Vương cùng các nước chư hầu hội họp, tuyên bố tội trạng vua Trụ, động viên và đoàn kết toàn thể cùng đánh nhà Thương.

Đại quân diệt Trụ của Chu Vũ Vương tiến như chẻ tre, nước chảy, khí thế ngút trời, trong một thời gian ngắn đã đến địa giới Mục Dã (thuộc Tây Nam huyện Kỳ, Hà Nam, Trung Quốc), cách Kinh đô Triều Ca bảy mươi dặm, bầu trời đỏ màu máu báo hiệu một trận tử chiến sắp diễn ra.

Trận huyết chiến châu chấu đá xe: Chu Vũ Vương dùng 5 vạn binh phá nát 700.000 quân Trụ Vương - Ảnh 1.

Chân dung Chu Vũ Vương (nguồn: https://ift.tt/2DHdL3S)

Bấy giờ vua Trụ nghe được tin các chư hầu làm phản dẫn đại quân chinh phạt kinh đô vội vã tập hợp đại quân được 70 vạn người ngựa, tự mình làm tổng chỉ huy tiến đến Mục Dã nghên chiến. Trong dự tính của Trụ Vương, với quân lực trong tay gấp 14 lần Chu Vũ Vương, lại là chính nghĩa thiên triều đi dẹp chư hầu sẽ nắm chắc phần chiến thắng.

Tuy nhiên, có một điều Trụ Vương không thể lường được đó chính là, hơn một nửa trong số 70 vạn quân triều đình có nguồn gốc từ nô lệ và tù binh bắt được từ Đông Di về.

Lực lượng này vừa được tổ chức vội vàng, lại mang sẵn lòng căm hận nhà vua vì những chính sách tàn bạo, ngược đãi trong thời bình nên không muốn bán sinh mạng để bảo vệ chế độ nhà Thương đã mục nát. Và Chu Vũ Vương chính là người đã nhìn được mâu thuẫn trong lòng đạo quân này.

Trong trận kịch chiến giáp lá cà tại Mục Dã, khi quân của Chu Vũ Vương với 5 vạn liều chết đánh dữ dội vào toàn quân Thương, số tù binh và nô lệ trong hàng ngũ của Trụ Vương liền sẵn vũ khí quay ngược đao kiếm cùng tiêu diệt vua Trụ.

Chính vì vậy, 70 vạn quân Thương nhanh chóng tan vỡ, ngoài số theo quân Chu, số còn lại bị chém chết, số khác đầu hàng và chạy trốn. Vu Trụ không còn cách nào, buộc phải thu dọn tàn quân mở đường máu về Triều Ca.

Thừa thắng, Thái Công Vọng đốc thúc tinh binh đuổi theo đến tận Kinh đô. Thế cùng, lực kiệt, Trụ Vương trốn vào Lộc Đài, phóng hỏa tự thiêu mình trong biển lửa. Nhà Thương diệt vong, nhà Chu lên thay, lịch sử Trung Quốc sang trang mới.

Trận huyết chiến châu chấu đá xe: Chu Vũ Vương dùng 5 vạn binh phá nát 700.000 quân Trụ Vương - Ảnh 2.

Chân dung quân sư Thái Công Vọng (nguồn: http://gamek.vn)

3. Bài học về thành công và thất bại

Bài học từ thành công của Chu Vũ Vương. Ông là người có nhãn quan chính trị của một người đứng đầu đất nước.

Chu Vũ Vương nắm rất chắc mâu thuẫn sâu xa và trực tiếp trong lòng nước Thương và chọn thời điểm thuận lợi nhất tiến quân (nội bộ nhà Thương sắp sụp đổ, các tài tướng, quân sư người bị giết, người làm lính, kẻ lại tha hương để giữ mạng sống), triều chính đổ nát, dân tình oán thán…

Ông còn là người có nghệ thuật chiêu dụ hiền tài và sử dụng hiền tài, tiêu biểu ở đây là Thái Công Vọng, Chu Công Đán, Chiêu Công Thích những bậc kiệt hiệt của thời loạn.

Tiếp đó phải kể đến đó là tính quyết đoán đến liều lĩnh khi lựa chọn đem 5 vạn quân chư hầu đi địch với thiên triều có trong tay 70 vạn. Lịch sử chứng minh Chu Vũ Vương đã đúng. Chỉ những người dám mạo hiểm, dám chấp nhận hi sinh mới làm thành đại nghiệp.

Share – Trận huyết chiến “châu chấu đá xe”: Chu Vũ Vương dùng 5 vạn binh phá nát 700.000 quân Trụ Vương — Ngon 24h

1. Một xã hội loạn lạc Sau thời kỳ đất nước thịnh trị, đêm ngủ không cần đóng cửa, lịch sử Trung Quốc bước vào giai đoạn đen tối dưới thời nhà Thương, nhất là vị vua cuối cùng-Trụ Vương. Theo Tư Mã Thiên, hồi nhỏ Trụ Vương là một người thông minh, thông hiểu […]

via Trận huyết chiến “châu chấu đá xe”: Chu Vũ Vương dùng 5 vạn binh phá nát 700.000 quân Trụ Vương — Ngon 24h

1. Một xã hội loạn lạc

Sau thời kỳ đất nước thịnh trị, đêm ngủ không cần đóng cửa, lịch sử Trung Quốc bước vào giai đoạn đen tối dưới thời nhà Thương, nhất là vị vua cuối cùng-Trụ Vương.

Theo Tư Mã Thiên, hồi nhỏ Trụ Vương là một người thông minh, thông hiểu kinh sách, vẻ ngoài tráng kiệt như những anh hùng đương thời. Khi mới nắm giữ binh quyền ông rất chăm lo tới phát triển kinh tế đất nước, đánh dẹp các bộ tộc xâm lấn.

Tuy nhiên, sau những năm thịnh trị, Trụ Vương dần sa vào rượu chè, phụ nữ, ít quan tâm đến triều chính. Để thỏa mãn sự ăn chơi sa hoa, vị vua này cho xây “hồ rượu” và “rừng thịt” để thâu đêm suốt sáng vui trong khoái lạc. Thêm vào đó vì nghe lời người vợ Đát Kỷ, Trụ Vương đã tạo ra những hình phạt tàn bạo bậc nhất lịch sử loài người để xử tử những người chống đối.

Ví như sái bồn là một hào nước to và sâu, sau đó được thả các loại rắn độc xuống. Những người phạm tội, bị lột sạch đồ và thả xuống để rắn cắn đến chết.

Bào lạc là một công cụ giết người làm bằng đồng, rỗng ở trong, phía dưới là miệng lò nóng. Người phạm tội sẽ bị buộc vào cột đồng nóng cho đến chết.

Trước những hành động vượt quá sức chịu đựng của dân chúng và triều thần, các tướng thân cận như Tỉ Can, Cơ Tử, Vi Tử bất chấp tính mạng can ngăn Trụ Vương. Trụ Vương không nghe sai người giết Tỉ Can và moi gan, Cơ Tử phải giả điên mới thoát, Vi Tử bỏ trốn khỏi Kinh đô Triều Ca.

2. “Châu chấu đá voi” 5 vạn đánh tan 70 vạn

Trước tình hình nước Thương suy yếu do Trụ Vương chỉ lo ăn chơi, tàn bạo, nhân dân oán thán, Chu Vũ Vương (tức Cơ Phát – con của Tây Bá hầu Cơ Xương ) được sự giúp sức của quân sư lỗi lạc Thái Công Vọng (Khương Tử Nha), các huynh đệ Chu Công Đán, Chiêu Công Thích chuẩn bị quân đội và các điều kiện tấn công vua Trụ.

Vào khoảng thế kỷ XI TCN, Chu Vũ Vương giao quyền thống soái 5 vạn đại quân cho quân sư Thái Công Vọng cùng vượt Hoàng Hà tiến về phía Đông hội quân với các nước chư hầu. Tại Minh Tân, quân của Chu Vũ Vương cùng các nước chư hầu hội họp, tuyên bố tội trạng vua Trụ, động viên và đoàn kết toàn thể cùng đánh nhà Thương.

Đại quân diệt Trụ của Chu Vũ Vương tiến như chẻ tre, nước chảy, khí thế ngút trời, trong một thời gian ngắn đã đến địa giới Mục Dã (thuộc Tây Nam huyện Kỳ, Hà Nam, Trung Quốc), cách Kinh đô Triều Ca bảy mươi dặm, bầu trời đỏ màu máu báo hiệu một trận tử chiến sắp diễn ra.

Trận huyết chiến châu chấu đá xe: Chu Vũ Vương dùng 5 vạn binh phá nát 700.000 quân Trụ Vương - Ảnh 1.

Chân dung Chu Vũ Vương (nguồn: https://ift.tt/2DHdL3S)

Bấy giờ vua Trụ nghe được tin các chư hầu làm phản dẫn đại quân chinh phạt kinh đô vội vã tập hợp đại quân được 70 vạn người ngựa, tự mình làm tổng chỉ huy tiến đến Mục Dã nghên chiến. Trong dự tính của Trụ Vương, với quân lực trong tay gấp 14 lần Chu Vũ Vương, lại là chính nghĩa thiên triều đi dẹp chư hầu sẽ nắm chắc phần chiến thắng.

Tuy nhiên, có một điều Trụ Vương không thể lường được đó chính là, hơn một nửa trong số 70 vạn quân triều đình có nguồn gốc từ nô lệ và tù binh bắt được từ Đông Di về.

Lực lượng này vừa được tổ chức vội vàng, lại mang sẵn lòng căm hận nhà vua vì những chính sách tàn bạo, ngược đãi trong thời bình nên không muốn bán sinh mạng để bảo vệ chế độ nhà Thương đã mục nát. Và Chu Vũ Vương chính là người đã nhìn được mâu thuẫn trong lòng đạo quân này.

Trong trận kịch chiến giáp lá cà tại Mục Dã, khi quân của Chu Vũ Vương với 5 vạn liều chết đánh dữ dội vào toàn quân Thương, số tù binh và nô lệ trong hàng ngũ của Trụ Vương liền sẵn vũ khí quay ngược đao kiếm cùng tiêu diệt vua Trụ.

Chính vì vậy, 70 vạn quân Thương nhanh chóng tan vỡ, ngoài số theo quân Chu, số còn lại bị chém chết, số khác đầu hàng và chạy trốn. Vu Trụ không còn cách nào, buộc phải thu dọn tàn quân mở đường máu về Triều Ca.

Thừa thắng, Thái Công Vọng đốc thúc tinh binh đuổi theo đến tận Kinh đô. Thế cùng, lực kiệt, Trụ Vương trốn vào Lộc Đài, phóng hỏa tự thiêu mình trong biển lửa. Nhà Thương diệt vong, nhà Chu lên thay, lịch sử Trung Quốc sang trang mới.

Trận huyết chiến châu chấu đá xe: Chu Vũ Vương dùng 5 vạn binh phá nát 700.000 quân Trụ Vương - Ảnh 2.

Chân dung quân sư Thái Công Vọng (nguồn: http://gamek.vn)

3. Bài học về thành công và thất bại

Bài học từ thành công của Chu Vũ Vương. Ông là người có nhãn quan chính trị của một người đứng đầu đất nước.

Chu Vũ Vương nắm rất chắc mâu thuẫn sâu xa và trực tiếp trong lòng nước Thương và chọn thời điểm thuận lợi nhất tiến quân (nội bộ nhà Thương sắp sụp đổ, các tài tướng, quân sư người bị giết, người làm lính, kẻ lại tha hương để giữ mạng sống), triều chính đổ nát, dân tình oán thán…

Ông còn là người có nghệ thuật chiêu dụ hiền tài và sử dụng hiền tài, tiêu biểu ở đây là Thái Công Vọng, Chu Công Đán, Chiêu Công Thích những bậc kiệt hiệt của thời loạn.

Tiếp đó phải kể đến đó là tính quyết đoán đến liều lĩnh khi lựa chọn đem 5 vạn quân chư hầu đi địch với thiên triều có trong tay 70 vạn. Lịch sử chứng minh Chu Vũ Vương đã đúng. Chỉ những người dám mạo hiểm, dám chấp nhận hi sinh mới làm thành đại nghiệp.

Note – Bloomberg: Tech investments are powering up clean energy

This week, my Bloomberg Opinion colleague Shira Ovide took a close look at U.S. tech company capital expenditures. Three years ago, Alphabet Inc., Apple Inc., Amazon.com Inc., Microsoft Corp. and Facebook Inc. spent $40 billion on big-ticket physical assets; last year, they invested $80 billion , putting them in the ranks of automakers, oil and gas companies, and telecoms in terms of capital expenditure outlays. How is tech driving capex in other sectors?

My Bloomberg NEF colleagues track the contracts private companies and the government sign with renewable-power generators to meet their electricity demand. Since 2010, they’ve signed agreements to buy nearly 18,000 megawatts from these generators of clean power. Tech companies are the biggest buyers; governments and universities are a distant second.

Corporations sign these purchase agreements for a number of reasons (sustainability goals and positive media coverage certainly being two), but the main reason is that long-term contracts with generators that have no variable costs are good for business. They give companies visibility on their power prices for several decades and, at least historically, have offered cheaper prices than what the grid provides.

Given that long-term power buyers are price-sensitive, it’s worth looking at what tech companies have been seeking for their power. Since 2010, it’s been mostly wind power, but we can see the approach to parity (or better) for solar in the past year.

Here’s the capex bit: Building all this new power generation for tech companies’ needs means billions of dollars in investment. Since 2010, tech companies’ demand has induced more than $15 billion in wind and solar investment just in the U.S. Announced wind and solar capex this year is more than $2 billion, with months yet to go, and with wind and solar capital costs half what they were in 2014.

That $15 billion in energy capex isn’t tech spending, but it wouldn’t have happened without tech companies, either. And every wind or solar project built to meet the needs of a tech company helps drive down the costs of wind and solar power through greater deployment. It’s significant capex in monetary terms; it makes an impact on the entire energy system, too.

Then there’s the transportation sector. Alphabet’s Waymo unit, for instance, is testing a fleet of self-driving vehicles. Should Waymo become a commercial service, it would need to spend millions or billions more on vehicles and charging networks (if those vehicles are electric). It might need to engage in some less-obvious capex, such as real estate to house its fleet and service centers to maintain its vehicles.

Tech is a major spender on long-term assets. It creates major spending in long-term assets it doesn’t own, and there could be more coming. Software is eating the world , as entrepreneur and investor Marc Andreessen presciently said in 2011. It’s also building it, in lots of places.

By Nat Bullard

BloombergOpinion

Sparklines

Sưu tầm – Friedrich Nietzsche: Why Life Isn’t Meaningless

In 1900, one of the most profound thinkers of his day was buried in a small town in Germany.

He had been sick for over a decade before his death as a side effect of a mental breakdown. Fortunately, in the years before that, he sealed his legacy with an impressive library of work.

Friedrich Nietzsche is a name that evokes passion even today. His writing touched on almost every aspect of the human condition, and many of his aphorisms are still widely quoted. And yet, there are few figures in modern history that are as misunderstood as Nietzsche.

The connotation that the average person associates with his name is one of nihilism, or meaninglessness. His often repeated phrase “God is dead” has consistently been taken out of context, and many of his ideas have been negatively reframed by second-hand sources.

The truth is that Nietzsche’s real concern was to define a framework for meaning in a world that was seeing a trending decline in religion. He was actually aggressively against nihilism.

While not always timid or utterly nuanced in his approach, it’s a shame that much of Nietzsche’s work has remained elusive to the general public. There is a lot of wisdom and insight in his writing, and his big ideas are worth understanding, whether or not you agree.

Will to Power as Motivation

Different ideologies have different opinions on what the fundamental motivation is for life.

Evolutionary theory suggests that it’s nothing more than survival and genetic endurance. Many religions lean towards a belief system that prefers the idea of heaven as a destination.

In psychotherapy, three schools of thought dominate. Will to pleasure, which is inspired by the beliefs of Sigmund Freud. Will to meaning, which stands on the work of Viktor Frankl. Will to power, which was championed by Alfred Adler, but initially introduced by Nietzsche.

The will to power was central to much of Nietzsche’s work, and it evolved over time. There is a fair degree of disagreement over what he meant, too. Some argue it was a metaphysical position (nature of reality), others that it was an epistemological position (relating to knowledge), but the most common interpretation is psychological.

To Nietzsche, power had a broad definition that involved a sense of mastery over oneself, the environment, and our relationships. He believed that this is primarily what dictates our behavior, and to live meaningfully is to align this will to power with actions and intentions.

Many people immediately feel discomfort with this idea, especially as it relates to other people because they automatically associate power with politics, war, and oppression.

That’s not the only way to look at it. Increasing power over yourself can be about controlling emotions. Increasing power over the environment may be about opportunity and optionality. An increase in power over others is more often a product of kindness than it is violence.

The will to power exists in our behavioral patterns in one way or another, but the way that it manifests depends on the choices we make and the things that we choose to value.

The degree to which your will to power hurts or benefits you or the people around you depends on the context within which you frame it. Luckily, that’s entirely up to you.

Self-overcoming as an Ideal

The “Übermensch” is one of the most famous and most misunderstood of Nietzsche’s ideas.

It was misused by the Nazis during the Second World War to further their own agenda, and given that the word roughly translates to “Superman,” it’s still painted in a poor light.

A more accurate translation has been suggested to be self-overcoming or self-mastering.

While the term is introduced only once in Thus Spoke Zarathustra, it’s essentially what the entire book was written about. To Nietzsche, the Übermensch was an ideal end for people to strive towards, and to get there, we would first have to overcome and master our current self.

In a world losing its connection to God and religion, he saw a need for us to create our own values to live meaningfully. But to do that, we would first need to envision a better and more advanced being than our current selves as to give us a significant aim.

There is still debate about whether or not Nietzsche’s idea of the Übermensch was referring to a singular ideal for the individual or a collective goal in the future for humanity as a whole.

It can also be interpreted subjectively. For a musician, this may mean self-overcoming their own doubt to strive towards the ideal of a fearless artist. For a designer, it could be about self-overcoming their creative challenges to strive towards the ideal of a product visionary.

Either way, it boils down to there being an image towards which it’s worth striving. An image that motivates the values we hold and the context in which we frame our will to power.

The idea of self-overcoming is less about a sudden change than it is about an ongoing personal transformation. The point is to give the journey of evolution a form of meaning.

Many people have goals and ideas for success that they envision, but they seldom have an improved identity that they look to evolve into. The latter may just be more important.

The Affirmation of Suffering

Sooner or later, every philosopher stumbles onto the problem of suffering. We all face pain over the course of our lives because it’s nature’s way of telling us that something is wrong.

At times, this is caused by physical damage to our bodies, which is understandable. If something is hurt, we want to know about it, and a feeling of pain forces us to react.

Much of the time, and more frustratingly, however, it’s a product of how we interpret the events in our life. This is also important, but this kind of suffering can be unbearable.

It can occur in response to a significant event, like losing a job or the death of a relative, or it can persist even without any major external stimuli, when struggling against a goal or in moments of doubt, for example. It demands an action, but it doesn’t always just go away.

Arthur Schopenhauer, one of the big influences on Nietzsche, had a very pessimistic view of human life precisely for this reason. He couldn’t find a logical link between meaning and the adverse effects of suffering, and he believed that we were doomed to the human condition.

Nietzsche, however, saw things differently.He liked to point out that the only problem with suffering is that we automatically label it as bad. We see it as something to avoid even though the rational function of pain is to make us stronger. It’s actually good for us.

As such, if you affirm and welcome pain and interpret it how it should be interpreted, then it doesn’t need to be that troubling thing that holds you down from experiencing the joys of life.

In fact, pain is quite often the fuel that strengthens you to really fight for self-overcoming.

Exceptions exist, but they’re unique. The more you fear pain, more problematic it becomes. The more you observe it for what it really is, the more you can detach yourself from its hold.

All You Need to Know

Whether you’re religious or not, it’s worth comprehending the different frameworks that humanity has developed to understand and derive meaning out of their place in the world.

In the last 200 years, there is perhaps no one whose philosophy has been as influential as Friedrich Nietzsche. Although misunderstood, he has a lot to teach us.

A world devoid of meaning of any kind is quite a dull one indeed. Few people have found extended joy and fulfillment in refusing to establish their own narrative into a larger one.

Different people find comfort in different things, but in the end, it’s about living life with intent.

By Zat Rana

Full link: https://medium.com/personal-growth/friedrich-nietzsche-why-life-isnt-meaningless-44ab0fb53a85

 

Sưu tầm – Methane isn’t just cow farts; it’s also cow burps (and other weird facts you didn’t know about this potent greenhouse gas)

Clip: https://embed.ted.com/e2c910b1-eb87-4620-ad9e-2fdf6157ffb1

Why learn about methane? Because it could be our chance to make a real dent in global warming, says environmentalist Fred Krupp.

Methane, which is created when four hydrogen atoms bond to one atom of carbon, is a molecule that’s lighter than air. It’s amazingly useful — it’s the primary component of natural gas, which generates roughly 22 percent of the world’s electricity (after coal). But methane also has a heavy — and damaging — impact on the planet.

“Methane pollution causes one quarter of the global warming that we’re experiencing right now,” says Fred Krupp of the Environmental Defense Fund in his TED talk (Let’s launch a satellite to track a deadly greenhouse gas). Carbon dioxide may be the most prevalent greenhouse gas (accounting for 81 percent of emissions), but methane is much more potent. Over a 20-year period, it traps 84 times more heat. So where does the methane in the atmosphere come from? And how can we control it?

Let’s get this out of the way: when some people hear the word “methane,” they immediately think about cow farts. (Hence stories like thisthis and this). But in reality, cow burps are much more problematic: 90 to 95 percent of the methane released by cows comes out of their mouths, while 5 to 10 percent is released in the form of manure and flatulence. According to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, livestock — including cows, pigs, sheep and other animals — are responsible for about 14.5 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Cows are the primary offenders, and each animal releases 30 to 50 gallons a day on average. And with an estimated 1.3 to 1.5 billion cows on the planet, that’s a whole lot of methane. But cows aren’t the main cause of our planet’s methane problem.

Most methane emissions come, directly or indirectly, from humans. Some methane is natural — it’s released by decaying vegetation and by the bacteria in wetlands and swamps. But most sources of methane are of human origin — livestock and farming, decay in landfills, leakage from the oil and gas industry. Since 1750, the amount of methane in the atmosphere has doubled because of human activity. The oil and gas industry is the top contributor, creating one-third of all methane emissions. As companies extract and transport oil and natural gas, methane leaks from their pumps, pipelines and wells at a rapid rate. In June 2018, the journal Science published a paper by EDF and other researchers that showed US oil and gas operations are leaking 60 percent more of the harmful gas than government estimates had predicted.

Another strange source of methane (and another reason to consider banning them): plastic bags. In a study published in August 2018, researchers from the University of Hawaii at Manoa were curious about what would happen when different plastics were heated by sunlight or soaked in seawater. They discovered that many kinds of plastic — especially polyethylene, the material used in grocery bags — emitted methane when exposed to light, and continued to release it even in the dark. When submerged in salt water for 152 days, the plastics also secreted methane. These results occurred in a laboratory, but it raises the question: is all the plastic trash we’ve dumped in landfills and the oceans also releasing methane?

Some methane gets absorbed by forest soil and stored in permafrost, but now … not so much. Forest soil contains a bacteria that eats methane — and scientists count on that process to rid us of a percentage of the gas. But a study released in August 2018 shows that forest soils are getting less good at capturing methane. When researchers looked at North American soil over a period of 18 years, they found that increased rainfall seemed to prevent the methane-eating class of bacteria called methanotrophs from doing their thing. Since 1901, global rainfall has increased at an average rate of 0.08 inches per decade, which means more and more methane will be released over time — a dangerous feedback loop.

Climate change is also causing the Arctic permafrost to melt and the organic material in it to thaw. As microbes and viruses feed on the newly melted organics, they emit methane. Some of the results: tall, fiery columns that erupted when holes were cut in a frozen lake (see it at 1:20 in this video); the rapidly-thawing lake appears to boil with bubbles as big as grapefruits. It’s another destructive cycle: the more ice that melts, the more methane that’s released, and this, in turn, leads to more atmospheric warming and so on. Scientists predict that 1 gigaton of methane could be released by 2100 as permafrost melts occur in Northern Europe, Northern Asia and North America.

There is good news: feeding cows seaweed, onions or probiotics could cut their methane emissions. A Texas lab is experimenting with giving cows probiotics in their feed and water, which has led to a 50 percent reduction in methane emissions. In California, feeding cows a mixture of dried seaweed and molasses has shown promising results, while in Spain, giving them small amounts of the chemical compound in onions has done the same. In India, a national program is optimizing cows’ diets to reduce methane emissions andhelp them produce more milk. All over the world, farmers are investing in methane digester systems to capture the methane that builds up in their manure tanks (the manure is later used for fertilizer). This methane can be used to fuel their operations, or be sold to power companies.

In 2021, a satellite will be launched to spot methane leaks. EDF’s Krupp believes that if companies, policymakers and the public have clear data about exactly how much methane is being inadvertently released, they’ll be motivated to decrease it. EDF — with the support of The Audacious Project — is building MethaneSAT, a satellite designed to map and measure emissions with incredible precision and unprecedented scope. Intended to launch in three years, it will survey 80 percent of global oil and gas operations roughly every four days, and EDF will share the data with governments and companies and work with them to end the leaks. “The fact that a single satellite can help us put the brakes on global warming is truly remarkable,” says Krupp. “We can do it now.”

He stresses that this project is all the more important in light of the US government loosening its methane policy — in September 2018, the Trump administration rolled back regulations that govern oil and gas companies’ emissions of the gas. However, thanks to advocacy by EDF and other environmental groups, in the last year more than 40 oil and gas companies have agreed to phase out devices that cause leaks. In the summer of 2018, eight major corporations — led by ExxonMobil and Chevron — committed to reducing their methane emissions by as much as 15 percent by 2020.

But MethaneSAT won’t be up there alone. On September 14, 2018, it was announced that the state of California is developing a satellite to measure greenhouse gas emissions. Part of a growing fleet of methane-detecting satellites, this device — when launched — could work in tandem with MethaneSAT. While MethaneSAT will take detailed measurements of emissions over a broad range, the California satellite could detect medium-to-large leaks at specific locations. As EDF explains on their blog, “It’s like having two camera lenses — wide angle and telephoto — that together produce a more complete picture.”

Just as humans once figured out how to harness methane for power, it is entirely in our capabilities to come up with strategies to prevent the gas from filling the atmosphere. Says Krupp, “This is our chance to create change in our lifetimes.”

By 

Full link: https://ideas.ted.com/methane-isnt-just-cow-farts-its-also-cow-burps-and-other-weird-facts-you-didnt-know-about-this-potent-greenhouse-gas/

 

Sưu tầm – What is deep time?

Meander through Earth’s lengthy timeline with these talks that go way, way back to the beginning of everything (as we know it so far, that is).

Full link: https://www.ted.com/playlists/573/what_is_deep_time?utm_source=newsletter_weekly_2018-09-29&utm_campaign=newsletter_weekly&utm_medium=email&utm_content=playlist_title

 

 

Sưu tầm – Can American Men and Women Ever Really Be Equal?

Enlightened Swedish dads, with their easy security in their masculinity, are literally a state-sponsored selling point. But nothing can really prepare you for them, not even living, as I did for a decade, in New York City’s performative-dad capital of Park Slope, Brooklyn. On the scrubbed streets of Stockholm are dads balancing Joolz strollers, looking up from their cell phones to shake stuffed animals in an infant’s face; bearded dads in beanies with newborns on their laps at a café; dads pushing a pink bicycle up a hill as a helmeted child sulkily hoofs it.

One of the first dads I spot upon arriving in Stockholm, a burly man in a crisp button-down, who tenderly holds a small child’s hand as they wait to cross the street, turns out to be international hockey superstar Peter “Foppa” Forsberg, a father of three. He is very polite as he offers me directions.

Liberated men are the vanguard of the decades-long Swedish war on gender inequality. The country’s last Prime Minister, who admittedly is also a man, adopted the label of “the first feminist government in the world.” Every year, Nordic countries jostle one another for the top spot in global gender-­equality rankings; over the next two weeks, more than one Swede will shamefacedly confess to me that the country recently dropped to No. 5.

Should you not have memorized the U.S.’s ranking on the most recent World Economic Forum scorecard, I’ll refresh your memory: it’s No. 49. Next to “days of paid parental leave” on America’s scorecard is a zero. Sweden allocates 480 days per birth, with three months assigned to each parent to encourage dads to take more. It also outranks the U.S. in women’s “economic participation and ­opportunity” by seven points and in “political empowerment,” which measures women in elected office, by 88 slots.

That women still make up only 20% of the U.S. Congress and 0% of the Republicans of the Senate Judiciary Committee was thrown into sharp relief, amid allegations that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted one woman, accosted another and was present at the rape of a third. One of the Democratic women on the committee, Kamala Harris, was given the post only after Al Franken resigned under a cloud of harassment allegations.

After spending much of the past year reporting on sexual harassment and assault, including allegations against TV host Charlie Rose, I have arrived in Sweden feeling pretty bleak about men. I spent months talking to women about the men who (allegedly) did it and the (mostly) men who (definitely) enabled it, some of whom pretended in public to care about women. As a feminist, I’m supposed to believe that equality is attainable and that men can be partners, but recent revelations and presidential elections have cruelly tested my optimism.

Maja, Martin and their child Pim in Stockholm; Martin plans to take eight months of leave
Maja, Martin and their child Pim in Stockholm; Martin plans to take eight months of leave
Elin Berge—INSTITUTE for TIME

Sweden itself has been having a reckoning with sexual abuses of power, one that has challenged its self-conception as a beacon of gender equality. “When you’re living in the most gender-equal country in the world, people try to sometimes hush down, because it doesn’t fit the image,” says Member of Parliament Birgitta Ohlsson. Sweden’s generous welfare state hasn’t staved off the rising popularity of a party that blames everything, including sexual violence, on immigrants. In September, the neo-fascist Sweden Democrats won almost 18% of the vote and are vowing to block formation of a new government unless they get a say in policy.

And those directions from the famous hockey player? They’re so I can go with Swedish journalist Kajsa Heinemann to a lecture on how women here are stressed from doing far more at home than men. The lecture is in Swedish, but the lopsided pie charts tell the story loud and clear. Sweden has realized that traditional parenting supercharges the gender gap and that in order to achieve equality, men have to transform too.

So I’ve set out to understand what the country most focused on gender equality might teach the U.S., even if it means learning that it’s harder than Americans hoped. Maybe it’s no accident that the gut-wrenching truths of #MeToo have come at a time of massive political upheavals, of establishments of all natures being tossed out. Why not reveal a giant for an ogre, when anything seems possible in politics, including the absolute worst? Then again, we have a chance to imagine something better. What will it take for American women and men to be equal? If we can’t find out in Sweden, who knows where we can?

This is where you say Sweden is a small and homogeneous country. It’s also a mixed economy of capitalism, state ownership and regulation, which means higher taxes than Americans are used to, though probably not as high as you might think, depending on how wealthy you are. By contrast, the U.S. is large and diverse, and its government just passed tax cuts. Paid parental leave? We don’t even have federally mandated sick days. Five years ago, when New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand introduced the ­FAMILY Act, which would have guaranteed 12 weeks of paid leave, it didn’t get much traction.

And yet looking to Sweden is an American tradition dating back to when President Franklin D. Roosevelt sent a delegation to study how the country charted a path between American capitalism and Soviet communism. A quarter-century later, another American arrived in Sweden. Her name was Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and she did not yet call herself a ­feminist—her time in Sweden would help change that.

In the U.S., Ginsburg had been demoted for becoming pregnant and expected to quit at childbirth. By contrast, Sweden sought to encourage women to be both workers and mothers. They’d implemented a child allowance in 1947 and nationwide paid maternity leave in 1955. Ginsburg was energized by Swedish writer Eva Moberg’s article demanding to know why women had two jobs and men had only one. Men had to liberate themselves too, she argued, to do what women already did, which was everything. By the early ’70s, Ginsburg had begun her effort to convince the Supreme Court that gender discrimination was unconstitutional—and many of her clients were men who were harmed by gender stereotypes.

In 1970, noted communist Richard Nixon started talking up affordable child care. A year later, Congress passed by a wide, bipartisan margin a child-care bill. When it got to Nixon’s desk, though, adviser Pat Buchanan persuaded him to block it to protect his right flank. In his veto, Nixon said he could not “commit the vast moral authority of the National Government to the side of communal approaches to child rearing over against the family-centered approach.” It turned out to be a rehearsal dinner for the marriage of antigovernment and self-described “pro-family” activists, who would spend the ’80s rejecting an Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution, telling women that feminism was to blame for all ills and stacking the courts with abortion opponents.

As for “communal approaches,” being in Sweden underlined to me that, despite what one or two exceptional women has pulled off, no one can, or should, do any of this alone.

Mark Kahaian was born in Michigan the same year Nixon vetoed that bill. His father worked long hours; at home, he says, “it was just my mom doing everything.” He went into the music business and met and married a photographer, Anna Schori. They lived in New York City and had their first child. “It was cool,” he says. “Then we had another child. That wasn’t cool.”

StreetGaris board members, from left to right: Ronak Moaf Mirlashari, Ailin Moaf Mirlashari, Sofia Lindh, Maliha Khan, Manel Rodrick, Emma Strom and Dima Sarsour
StreetGaris board members, from left to right: Ronak Moaf Mirlashari, Ailin Moaf Mirlashari, Sofia Lindh, Maliha Khan, Manel Rodrick, Emma Strom and Dima Sarsour
Elin Berge—INSTITUTE for TIME

They were freelancers in a country where paid leave is treated like a favor, if you happen to have a full-time job with a company that offers it. After that, child care is an expensive patchwork: in 23 states it costs more than in-state public-college tuition, having risen by 65% since the early ’80s. No wonder so many American women—it usually is women—stay home in those early years whether they want to or not, paying not in money but in future income and mobility. Mark and Anna were both committed to their careers so they improvised: trading off, swapping babysitting with other parents and part-time nannies. Their first home-based day-care provider got shut down by the city, so they started paying $1,200 a month to the YMCA.

To keep the family afloat, Mark says, he “started working crazy jobs. I barely saw my kids.” Every conversation he had with other parents seemed to revolve around money. Worse, he felt guilty that he wasn’t pulling his weight at home. “I was aware that having kids is a complete trap for women,” Anna told me. “You can fall behind and be the main caregiver.” That’s borne out by statistics. One study of dual-earner heterosexual couples in the U.S. found that they split the household labor pretty equally until the baby came, when women’s total work hours, paid and unpaid, increased 21 hours while men added only 12.5. Studies have also shown that while college­-educated men and women generally start out earning nearly the same at work, the gap widens by 55 percentage points by the end of prime childbearing years. (The gap was 28 points for women without college degrees.)

The moment when Mark decided they had to move to Sweden, where Anna had been born and raised, was when their then 3-year-old son asked his parents if they could start eating more slowly. At this point in the story, Mark and I are sitting in a sunny café in Stockholm. I look down at what’s left of my cardamom bun, anxiously chewed to a nub. Then at the judiciously nibbled pastry before him.

Anna had left Sweden at age 20 because she found it stultifying. She is one of several Swedish women I talk to who seemed to find the country’s professed commitment to gender equality overly restrictive, or too self-congratulatory, or too heteronormative and too two-parent focused, or just kind of embarrassingly earnest. She’s proud, she says, of making parenthood work in the dog-eat-dog U.S. until the kids were toddlers.

Fathers and children in Stockholm play at a center where parents on leave gather to socialize
Fathers and children in Stockholm play at a center where parents on leave gather to socialize

But it turned out that while “having it all” was being put solely on the shoulders of each individual American woman—you’ve come a long way, baby!—Swedes were chugging away at the collective project of equality, which they realized from the start would have to be woven into everything they did, including their welfare state. And it would have to be for the masses, not just for those who got close enough to the glass ceiling to peer through it. In ­Sweden, gender equality follows the same logic as the country’s most famous capitalist exports, H&M and Ikea, which is that everyone should be able to afford nice things.

The Swedes realized jointly taxing married couples meant women worked less, so in 1971 they started taxing individuals. They figured out that if women felt overworked at home and their job, there would be fewer Swedish babies, so they implemented cheap, universal child care, with a national curriculum that included gender equality. (One Swedish woman told me her family spends more to park their car in Stockholm than on day care.) The government still pays a monthly allowance to each Swedish child of about $142 to cover the basics. Today, Sweden’s birthrates, though below replacement level, are among the highest in Europe—higher than the U.S.’s—even as a higher proportion of Swedish women than American women are in the workforce. When Americans are asked why they’re having fewer babies, lack of affordable child care—among other basic economic concerns—is at the top of the list, though you wouldn’t know it from how little it enters the public conversation.

Sweden, prodded by feminists, saw early on that maternity leave wasn’t enough and that giving only women leave created a system where women disproportionately did the household labor, so in 1974 it became the first country to implement paid paternity leave. One of the first Swedish public figures to set an example by taking paternity leave was at the time the Undersecretary of State. His name is Pierre Schori, and he’s Anna’s dad. He tells me he secretly thought his leave would be a good time to work on his book. “That was an illusion,” he says. In the end, bringing up a kid was enough work on its own.

Anna had her own point to make, which was taking a prestigious photography assignment when her child was 2 months old. In Sweden, she says, “If you don’t take the full parental leave”—all 480 days, of which women typically take about 75%—“you’re a bad parent.” But ask her, or ­literally all of the ­Swedish women I interview, about whether she would trade the Swedish system for America’s choose-your-own-­adventure one—well, no, not when one study found that nearly a quarter of American women who give birth go back to work within two weeks.

‘Not only have I not heard a catcall, I’ve not even seen guys be creepy.’
– Mark Kahaian

So in 2015, two decades after she left Sweden, Anna agreed, at 40, to give the country another shot. Since paid family leave doesn’t expire until a child is 8, both Mark and Anna could take leave for their two sons, now 9 and 4. Mark tells me incredulously that he gets text messages from the government reminding him to use it all. Oh, and their government-­run day care, which has educational content and an in-house chef with an impressive Instagram account? Their out-of-pocket costs are $18 a month.

Mark says his very breathing has changed. So has his experience of being a man. “There are so many layers that I keep discovering in the way that I relate with other men,” he says. And “not only have I not heard a catcall, I’ve not even seen guys be creepy.”

In Sweden, it’s not a secret that the country hasn’t yet achieved full equality. The statistics are right there on its official government website. Women are still paid less than men for full-time work (but, I discover, the gap is 8 points narrower than in the U.S.). There are alarmingly high Swedish rape statistics (although Sweden’s system encourages victims to come forward). Women are underrepresented on the boards of companies (but still represent twice the U.S.’s paltry 17%, according to Credit Suisse’s global study). The number of women in Parliament has declined since 2006 (but it’s still nearly half female).

Despite the country’s commitment to equality, most Swedish women I talk to are eager to tell me about what falls short. A 20-year-old premed student tells me about boys who dominate biology class even when they haven’t done the homework; a business-school professor describes an old-boys network of mentoring and promotion. Anna Akerlund, a producer at Sweden’s national radio station whom I visit a couple of weeks into her parental leave, says she was staggered by Sweden’s #MeToo moment, which happened in parallel with the U.S.’s in 2017. “My view of Sweden has changed,” she says.

In November 2017, after Jean-Claude Arnault, a prominent cultural figure with ties to the Swedish Academy, was alleged to have assaulted 18 women, several members left their lifetime appointments in protest, resulting in the cancellation of the 2018 Nobel Prize in Literature. Arnault, who has denied the accusations, is currently on trial for rape. He has pleaded not guilty.

Martin Gunseus, 30, with 9-month-old son Pim, on Sept. 18 in Stockholm, two weeks into his scheduled eight-month paternity leave
Martin Gunseus, 30, with 9-month-old son Pim, on Sept. 18 in Stockholm, two weeks into his scheduled eight-month paternity leave

When #MeToo reached the highest echelons of Swedish society, it was no longer so easy to claim sexual assault was a problem brought by immigrants and refugees, as some on the right had. “It’s not a white-man problem, it’s not a brown-man problem, it’s a man problem,” says Leila Trulsen, the Swedish-born daughter of a Tanzanian immigrant and one of the 13 board members of the feminist group StreetGaris. The group, inspired by black women’s theories of intersectional feminism and dissatisfaction with traditional Swedish feminism, was formed five years ago in the wake of riots in immigrant communities. Its young founders, immigrants and the daughters of immigrants, are furious at how the men of their communities have been scapegoated as destroying Swedish culture, including with sexual violence. (President Trump told TIME in March 2017 of Sweden taking in refugees and immigrants, “what Sweden has done to themselves is very sad.”)

“The louder you speak about brown men violating women’s bodies,” says StreetGaris board member Dima Sarsour, 36, “the more space you will get.”

But beyond #MeToo, Sweden’s family-friendly policies and culture have hardly erased the expectations people bring to gender, or parenting. Member of Parliament Ohlsson, who had two children in the five years she served as a Cabinet Minister, made headlines for days with her quick return to work. One of the people who mentioned Ohlsson’s short leave to me was, incidentally, Anna Schori’s mother, a women’s-­rights advocate. “We’re not animals,” Maud Edgren-Schori said indignantly. Parental leave, she told me, was not about the parents, it was about the children, and in the beginning at least, children need their mothers.

Ohlsson wasn’t the only new parent in her office. “I had three colleagues in the government who were also going to be fathers for the first time or second time or third time, and there was not a debate at all about how they were supposed to deal with everything,” says Ohlsson. But the judgment only made Ohlsson more determined to challenge the status quo. “Baby No. 2, I delivered her Friday,” she says, “and I was back at the office on Monday.”

Ohlsson says gendered expectations are one of many reasons there are fewer women in positions of power than there could be, although to reiterate, Sweden still has more than America does. “You have other problems,” Ohlsson says bluntly of the U.S., “but in Sweden, it’s very obvious that people say to the very ambitious woman that you should tone yourself down a bit.”

‘I think being a feminist is also believing in change.’
– Anna Akerlund

Akerlund tells me she’s decided to talk herself into believing that she’s the dad, because none of the dads she knows feel guilty. “So if you just sometimes try to be the father, you can be a really good father,” she says as she breast-feeds.

But Sweden has acted swiftly to try to address these problems: it recently changed its rape law to require verbal and nonverbal consent. Meanwhile, even after the #MeToo-related resignation of multiple members in both parties, the U.S. Congress has yet to pass any legislation policing sexual harassment in its own ranks. And though men still make more money in both countries, the Swedish government designated three months of leave per parent, limiting how much they could take at the same time to avoid the burden falling on women. Now that those three paid months of leave are use it or lose it, more men take it.

Akerlund is optimistic about the moves. “I think being a feminist,” she says, “is also believing in change.”

For all the work left to do, it’s impossible to deny that Sweden has made progress over time. Pierre ­Schori, Anna’s dad, told me that when he took paternity leave back in the ’80s, women swarmed him, offering to help the clueless man cook and care for the kids. Now, he pointed out, the playgrounds are filled with dads.

The contrasts are clear among the families studied by Lucas Gottzen, a sociologist at Stockholm University who has conducted comparative research of parenting in the U.S. and Sweden. “U.S. mothers come home earlier than fathers, since they are working less,” he says. “When the father came home at dinner, the mom had taken care of homework and dinner preparation. In Sweden it tended to be, in a dual-earner couple, you would have a practice of parents alternating pickup.” American fathers wanted to be more involved, but that manifested itself mostly in helping their kids participate in sports.

“I would say culture is not changed overnight,” Gottzen says. But that change didn’t happen just by waiting for it.

Martin Gunséus, 30, with his son Pim, 9 months old in Stockholm, on Aug. 18; Tobias Rosengren and his son Hugo outside of Öppen Förskola in Årsta, Stockholm, a meeting place for parents on parental leave.
Martin Gunséus, 30, with his son Pim, 9 months old in Stockholm, on Aug. 18; Tobias Rosengren and his son Hugo outside of Öppen Förskola in Årsta, Stockholm, a meeting place for parents on parental leave.

One afternoon after I get back from Sweden, I call up Nima Sanandaji, the author of The Nordic Gender Equality Paradox. The book maintains that the region’s famously egalitarian approach has held women back from top management jobs, partly by discouraging entrepreneurship but also by encouraging mothers to take more time at home. He tells me excitedly that American conservatives are running with his ideas to counter the growing interest in the Scandinavian welfare state. But unlike some critics on the right who say that even in a welfare state women would choose stereotypical gender roles, Sanandaji says the government isn’t giving them enough choices to succeed. “The policies that stand in the way of women are old-fashioned social democracy,” he says.

Women would be better off with lower taxes, he argues, because they could hire more household help—presumably other, lower-paid women. Shrinking the size of the government, where most workers are women, would mean more women could make more money in the private sector, he says. Sanandaji also argues that you can’t say the welfare state created equality in Scandinavia. If you go back to the Vikings, local culture was still far more egalitarian than in the rest of Europe.

So, I say, that might explain why the Nordic countries tried these gender-equal policies first, or why they have more of them, but why does that mean it can’t be tried anywhere else? What about the other countries that don’t have that cultural history but still have better-than-zero paid leave and child-care policies? France? Canada? Australia? Israel?

To my surprise, he doesn’t disagree. He just wants people to know that “this model is not perfect. It has unintended consequences of limiting women’s upward mobility.” For example, employers, he says, might be less likely to hire a woman for a prime position out of the assumption that she’s going to take a long leave.

That kind of discrimination happens in the U.S. too, I say, except women are (illegally) passed over on the assumption that they’ll cut back or leave the workforce entirely after having kids. At least the Swedish woman won’t lose her health insurance or her paid leave, as the pushed-out American woman would. And isn’t that why Sweden wants more dads to take leave, so that women alone don’t suffer the parental penalty?

Sanandaji seems skeptical that all this dad stuff will work, but he has another idea: employers could get a little subsidy or tax credit when their employees are on leave. Oh, and he thinks the government-funded preschools should be open later to accommodate moms who work long hours to climb the ladder.

So he wants more government spending? “I’m a pragmatist,” he says. “I’m not a raving lunatic libertarian like you might have in the U.S.” His bottom line: “We don’t have to abolish the Nordic welfare model. We only need to adjust it.”

In fact, Sweden is already adjusting. “The Sweden you visited is the Sweden where massive reforms have been done,” Sanandaji says. “They have reduced the tax burden and added a tax deduction for household services. They’ve allowed privatized, for-profit services. One of the reasons has been this idea that this stuff is hindering women’s careers.” He concedes that the center-right government that was in power until 2014 wanted to cut taxes anyway, and all this gender-equality stuff “was kind of useful for them.”

Ulrika Casselbrant, 38, breastfeeds her 8 week old child, Vera, on a commuter train in Stockholm on Aug. 19, 2018.
Ulrika Casselbrant, 38, breastfeeds her 8 week old child, Vera, on a commuter train in Stockholm on Aug. 19, 2018.

“I think the American system is a bit odd,” he volunteers. “You do pay a lot of taxes, but you don’t get much from the public sector.” Part of it, he says, is that studiously neutral Sweden doesn’t spend what America does on the military. Before we hang up, he gives me some advice. “If I were an American,” he says, “I would say, ‘For the taxes we already pay we should at least get public preschool.’”

now that I’ve begun to understand the Swedish model, warts and all, I still want to know: How can we be more like them? My last stop is the office of Leif Pagrotsky, a former Cabinet Minister from Sweden. “We do this for our own needs, based on our own values,” he demurs, when I ask. Pagrotsky points out that limited government is a deeply rooted American value. True, I reply, but U.S. government has always helped some people.

He sighs. “I will say this,” he says.

I hold my breath and wait.

“Some things are possible,” he says eventually. “Some things are within human reach to do.” 
If we learn nothing else from Sweden, let it be this: it doesn’t have to be this way.

No, Sweden doesn’t have a magic bullet. The pressure to conform to the Swedish way leaves some people out, especially newcomers; it can be inflexible and unsympathetic to parents who want to work more or parent less intensively, which has slowed women’s march through the workforce. It is no inoculation against sexual abuses of power.

And yet. The fact that Sweden hasn’t entirely eradicated sexism doesn’t mean there’s no point in ­trying—it just means that this is a generations-long shift that requires trial and error, and a commitment to gender equality from every man and woman in the country. Above all, the shift will require Americans’ learning to love something many have long hated: Big Government. The brutal reckonings of our time have made clear that the current way isn’t working; if we can see that for what it is, there may be hope for Americans yet.

By Irin Carmon

Full link: http://time.com/longform/gender-equality-america/?utm_source=time.com&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=the-brief-gender-equality&utm_content=2018092911am&eminfo=%7b%22EMAIL%22%3a%221eLQ3nz9tkRy7AoaFTE5osEFAz5azrR8%22%2c%22BRAND%22%3a%22TD%22%2c%22CONTENT%22%3a%22Newsletter%22%2c%22UID%22%3a%22TD_TBS_655A9F23-6021-42DF-A471-C1880D9266DA%22%2c%22SUBID%22%3a%22120795682%22%2c%22JOBID%22%3a%22890217%22%2c%22NEWSLETTER%22%3a%22THE_BRIEF_SPECIAL_EDITION%22%2c%22ZIP%22%3a%22%22%2c%22COUNTRY%22%3a%22VNM%22%7d

 

Sưu tầm – Mapping heavy industry’s digital-manufacturing opportunities

Manufacturing digitization could boost heavy-industry profit margins by three to five points—but only if people can make the new technologies work at scale. The first article in a new series looks at the opportunity and the sector’s progress.

The latest revolution may have started in the world of software and services, but now heavy industries1 are also embracing the power of the newest wave of digitization in manufacturing. Leading companies in sectors including mining, chemicals, steelmaking and pulp and paper are applying new data sources and new digital technologies to boost the throughput, efficiency, reliability, and productivity of their manufacturing operations.

These companies are embarking on their digital journeys from very different starting points. In recent years, we’ve visited hundreds of plants and spent time talking with managers and operations personnel about their current technologies and their digital ambitions. From that work, we have defined four broad levels of digital maturity: three that exist today, and Digital 4.0, a hypothetical future state based on technologies and approaches that are still under development (see sidebar, “Four stages of digital maturity in heavy industry”).

Today, average digital maturity levels vary by sub-sector, although there are also considerable differences at the company and plant level (Exhibit 1). For sites and sectors operating at lower levels of maturity, that means there are opportunities to improve EBITDA by 3 to 5 percentage points or more. For more mature sites the potential might be lower, although a one- to three-percentage-point increase in EBITDA is still a substantial improvement. The chemical industry can be used as a good reference point, where the average impact of recent large-scale digitization programs has been in the order of 3 to 5 EBITDA percentage points, although some companies have achieved remarkable performance improvements, such as throughput increases of over 30 percent.

Most heavy-industry sectors are at the middle stages of digital maturity.

The digital landscape

Today’s Industry 4.0 manufacturing opportunities for heavy industrial players are concentrated in four main areas (Exhibit 2). These levers represent the current sweet spot for digital investments, since they rely on relatively mature technologies and can deliver proven value.

Four levers help business units capture digital value and overcome industrial changes.

To help companies decide where to focus their efforts, we have developed a heat map of digital opportunities by sector (Exhibit 3). In the first three of the four main areas, our experience suggests companies can expect their investments to pay back in three years or less.

A heat map identifies the most promising digital opportunities in heavy industry.

Data analytics

The largest sources of value for all sectors except mining extraction come from the application of data analytics to improve throughput, yield, energy efficiency, and quality. Most heavy industrial players companies have rich historical data resources collected from their manufacturing operations. Advanced analytical techniques can help them learn from this data: combing through it to extract valuable insights into the underlying drivers of manufacturing performance, balancing the complex trade-offs between variables, and enabling higher levels of real-time control performance. In today’s high-demand market, throughput is clearly the winning value proposition, as extra output not only adds to the full profit margin, but also dilutes the full cost base. Downturn markets will benefit more from a focus on costs, such as energy, yield and quality.

The use of data analytics to increase asset reliability is often heralded as a major digital opportunity, but so far, the approach has fallen short of expectations—except where large fleets of similar assets are present, like rolling stock in mining. Most industrial operations tend to lack the quantities of data needed to apply these predictive-maintenance techniques: big assets do not yield enough failures and small assets are more cost-effectively served by a redundancy strategy. Our experience suggests that, while digitization can deliver significant value in maintenance and reliability activities, doing so requires companies to adopt other levers in addition to analytics. This is especially true for the digitization of the workforce, as this creates new sources of data: each human coordinates a multi-sensor flow into the data environment, opening a new world for maintenance strategy, management, and execution.

The digital workforce

Supporting an organization’s human workforce with new digital tools can deliver tremendous value in the long term. Digital approaches in this area can include tools to accelerate and simplify planning, scheduling, and permitting activities, boosting workforce productivity while providing significant health and safety benefits. Workers can also benefit from real-time access to documentation, decision-support, and troubleshooting tools. And the flow of information runs both ways: when staff record their activities and observations in digital form, that data can be stored and analyzed as an additional source of insights for future improvements—the base for the next wave of data analytics.

Asset network value maximization

Thinking about manufacturing assets as an integrated network, rather than a collection of individual machines, helps companies eliminate bottlenecks, improve responsiveness, and streamline their end-to-end value chains. Heavy industry players see a smaller improvement opportunity here than some other industries, since many already run highly integrated manufacturing operations. We believe most could still capture value from the use of digital tools to optimize schedules, cutting lead times, trimming in-process inventories and ensuring that capacity is put the most profitable use available.

Robotics and cobotics

Robotics is a major opportunity area in the medium term, thanks to the rapidly falling price and increasing capability of robot systems, but low-cost multifunctional mobile robots suitable for heavy industrial environments are not yet available. Whenever autonomous guided vehicles can be applied, however, a clear business case is likely to be found.

Creating a digital vision

Heavy industrial manufacturers won’t be able to grab the available digital value in one hit. The scale and complexity of their assets means they will need to apply new digital tools and approaches at multiple places across their operations. Like any large-scale transformation effort, success will require companies to develop a clear, compelling vision of the kind of digital organization they want to create.

It will also require them to be honest about their current strengths and weaknesses. Digitization is about much more than technology, it can only be achieved if a company’s people are willing to change their way of working, and if they have the right skills and expertise, along with a true “digital” mindset. In this regard, the digital transformation is very similar to the lean or manufacturing-excellence transformation that many companies have already undergone, with very similar success factors.

In future articles, we will look in more depth at the different ways heavy industrial companies can approach the challenge of digital transformation, and at the resources, infrastructure and enablers they need to make it work.

By Olivier Noterdaeme, Christoph Schmitz, Malgorzata Sliczna, Ken Somers, and Joris Van Niel

Full link: https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/operations/our-insights/mapping-heavy-industrys-digital-manufacturing-opportunities?cid=other-eml-alt-mip-mck-oth-1809&hlkid=8f385e4e9c1646e9b886fa68f28f2d30&hctky=2618809&hdpid=583ad1e9-0446-4814-b8ab-f9b22ae97c97

 

Sưu tầm – Economic Conditions Snapshot, September 2018: McKinsey Global Survey results

Respondents express declining optimism on the economy, especially in emerging markets. The United States gains more attention as a destination for new business opportunities.

As they regard economic conditions at home and in the world economy, executives are warier than they have been all year. For the third quarter in a row, respondents to McKinsey’s newest survey of executive sentiment share less positive assessments of the economy’s current state,1 and their outlook for the months ahead is also cautious. Expectations for trade activity are declining, trade-related risks are still perceived as top threats to growth, and for the first time this year, less than half expect the rate of economic growth, both at home and globally, will increase over the next six months. The view from emerging economies is particularly downbeat. These respondents offer a more negative overall assessment of the global economy, economic conditions in their own countries, and their companies’ prospects. In a few cases, they are also more likely to cite the United States as the country with the best opportunities for their businesses, rather than their home countries or nearby economies.

Economic sentiment takes a downward turn

Respondents’ sentiment about conditions in their home economies continues to decline.

The newest results suggest concern over the momentum of the economy, and respondents’ economic sentiments are the most uncertain they have been all year. In their assessment of the global economy, 38 percent of all respondents say conditions have worsened in the past six months, up from 26 percent in June. At 31 percent, the share reporting improvements is even smaller; it’s the first time since December 2016 that a larger share of respondents say global economic conditions have worsened than have improved.2Sentiment on country-level performance also continues to decline (Exhibit 1). The share of respondents saying conditions in their home economies are worse now than six months ago is nearly equal to the share saying conditions are better.

The responses also signal increasingly cautious views on trade: 36 percent of respondents say that in the past year, the level of trade between their home countries and the rest of the world has decreased, up from 22 percent who said so in June. In a few regions (North America, most notably), respondents have reported sizable declines in their countries’ trade levels in the past two surveys. By contrast, those in India and in Latin America are the most likely to report an increase in trade levels, and they are the only two groups less likely to report declines in this survey than they were one year ago (Exhibit 2).

Across regions, those in India and Latin America report the most positive trade outcomes since last year.

Still, on all of these measures, respondents in emerging economies are notably more negative than their developed-economy peers (Exhibit 3). Overall, they are much more likely than their counterparts to say global conditions and conditions in their home economies have worsened in recent months. This is especially true in Latin America, where just six months ago, 62 percent of respondents believed conditions in their countries would be better by now. Just 17 percent say conditions have improved during that time. When asked about trade levels, emerging-economy respondents overall are most likely to report increases in the past year.3 Yet those in this group are also more likely than their peers to report declining trade: 44 percent do so, compared with 32 percent in developed economies.

Overall, emerging-economy respondents are more downbeat than their peers about the economy and trade.

Waning optimism

Looking ahead, respondents also report a progressively less positive outlook on the economy. Compared with the past two surveys, smaller shares predict that the global economy and their home economies will be better in six months than they are now (Exhibit 4). Nevertheless, respondents across regions feel more positive about their future than the present—except in Europe and in North America (and in the United States specifically). In North America, respondents report much more buoyant views than their peers on current conditions: 53 percent say their economies are in better shape now than six months ago, compared with 30 percent of all other respondents. But they are much more negative about their home countries’ prospects. Just 28 percent in the region believe future conditions will continue to improve, and a slightly larger share predict that domestic conditions will worsen.

Steadily smaller shares of respondents believe that economic conditions will improve over the next few months.

And while respondents still tend to expect the economy’s growth rate will increase rather than contract, their overall optimism about economic growth continues to decline. Currently, 44 percent expect the global economy’s growth rate will increase in the next six months (and 39 percent expect a contraction), down from 65 percent six months ago. Forty-seven percent say the same for their home economies, down from 61 percent six months ago. On their countries’ trade prospects, too, there is a marked decline in expectations. Forty-six percent expect trade levels will decrease in the next year, a share that has grown steadily since December 2017, when half that share expected trade would decrease.

This result may not be surprising, as trade issues still prevail as the perceived top threats to economic growth. As in our previous survey, trade-policy changes and changing levels of trade are cited first and third on the list of potential global risks, and trade-policy changes continue to top the list of threats to domestic growth (Exhibit 5). At the same time, a few other risks have come to the fore. The shares of respondents citing exchange-rate volatility as a global and a domestic risk have increased since June, with emerging-market respondents expressing greater concern. Volatile exchanges are cited as a domestic risk by 26 percent in this group, compared with 7 percent in developed economies—and up from 13 percent of emerging-economy respondents in June.

Trade-related risks still predominate as top risks to global and domestic growth.

Growing business opportunities in the United States—and concerns in emerging economies

For the third quarter in a row, we have asked private-sector respondents which countries will provide their companies with the biggest opportunities for growth in the next year. Six months ago, respondents tended to cite their own countries or those in nearby markets.4 But the latest results suggest that the best opportunities seem to be shifting away from local emerging economies (China and Brazil, for example) and toward developed economies, such as the United States. Respondents in developed Asia now identify the United States most often—and more often than China (33 percent, down from 55 percent in June) or even Japan, the two countries they cited most often in the past two surveys. In India, respondents now also cite the United States more often than their home country, which they identified most often in the past two surveys. And in Latin America, respondents are less likely to cite Brazil now than in March, though in both Latin America and in North America, Mexico has become a more attractive destination for business.

When asked about their own companies’ prospects, respondents remain more positive than negative, in contrast to their broader economic views. Yet since the previous survey, emerging-economy respondents have noted a few new pain points at the company level (Exhibit 6). On the employee front, emerging-economy respondents are more likely than their peers to expect their workforce size will decrease in the months ahead. In the past two surveys, the two groups were much more aligned: for example, six months ago, 17 percent in each group predicted a workforce decline. Their expectations for consumer demand are also more cautious, compared with the previous survey and with their developed-economy peers. And the same is true of their outlook on profits. One-quarter predict that company profits will decrease in the next six months, more than double the share who said so six months prior.

In emerging economies, respondents are less optimistic than their peers about their companies’ prospects.

Full link: https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/strategy-and-corporate-finance/our-insights/economic-conditions-snapshot-september-2018-mckinsey-global-survey-results?cid=other-eml-alt-mip-mck-oth-1809&hlkid=a20388e2798b461fa3958cfde74ce38a&hctky=2618809&hdpid=b9d1913c-9a3b-4da1-8c49-08daed8ae8d4

 

Sưu tầm – Fish-Oil Heart Medicine Is Rarest of Drug Breakthroughs

Amarin Corp.’s capsules are relatively cheap, have few side effects, and could help millions.

When medical breakthroughs are announced, they often affect a surprisingly small number of people. Many new drugs these days are targeting rare diseases or niche patient groups, and their impact is further restricted by price.

Monday’s results from Amarin Corp.’s test of purified fish oil Vascepa in people at risk for heart diseases are an exception — and one more likely than any recent drug outcome to affect the average person reading this column.

Vascepa was shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular events like heart attack or stroke by 25 percent in high-risk patients, much more than analysts hoped for, and without side effects. Add to that its relative cheapness, and it’s a result that could affect millions, change how heart disease is approached, and justify the more than tripling of Amarin’s share price Monday morning. In fact, it may be the rarest success of all: a breakthrough that cost-conscious, health-care gatekeepers don’t hamper, but embrace.

It’s been easy to doubt Amarin, which has been working on this trial for the better part of a decade. The scientific rationale is there: Omega-3 fatty acids like the one Amarin is testing can reduce high triglycerides, a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. But many previous fish-oil trials have failed. Vascepa’s purity enables a higher dose without raising cholesterol, as other fish oils can. Amarin bet that focusing on high-risk patients with persistently high triglycerides would reveal the benefit of that higher dose, and was proven correct.

Insurers already approve coverage of the drug for use by a small group of patients with very high triglicerides, but there is a strong case to be made to expand coverage more broadly. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S., and heart attacks and strokes are incredibly expensive for the health-care system. Preventing them not only saves lives, it saves money.

Other drugmakers have tried and failed to make a similar argument with other treatments, most notably so-called PCSK9 inhibitors drugs from Amgen Inc. and Sanofi and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. These medicines are able to dramatically lower bad cholesterol beyond what older statins can manage, and can significant reduce cardiovascular events in a high-risk population. But their list price of more than $14,000 at launch has caused insurers to substantially restrict availability.

Amarin said on a Monday morning conference call that it will revisit its pricing, but right now Vascepa’s list price is about $2,400 a year, much lower than those other drugs. That kind of price, combined with the number of people that could benefit and the size and rigor of the trial, will make aggressive restriction difficult.

Some skepticism about previous failures and Amarin’s claims that its drug’s purity is difficult to replicate will remain, and the company didn’t disclose data on important secondary endpoints Monday. But in an industry where progress is too frequently incremental and inaccessible, this is a rare result where the real-world impact may exceed the hype.

By 

Full link: https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-09-24/amarin-amrn-fish-oil-heart-medicine-win-is-rarest-drug-success?utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter&utm_term=180928&utm_campaign=sharetheview

 

Sưu tầm – Elon Musk Steps Down as Tesla’s Chairman in Settlement With S.E.C. Over Go-Private Tweet

Elon Musk, under pressure from his lawyers and investors of Tesla, the company he co-founded, reached a deal with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Saturday to resolve securities fraud charges. The settlement will force Mr. Musk to step aside as chairman for three years and pay a $20 million fine.

The S.E.C. announced the deal two days after it sued Mr. Musk in federal court for misleading investors over his post on Twitter last month that he had “funding secured” for a buyout of the electric-car company at $420 a share.

The deal with the S.E.C. will allow him to remain as chief executive, something he could have jeopardized if he had gone to battle with the agency.

It is not clear why Mr. Musk changed his mind so quickly.

People familiar with the situation, who were not authorized to speak publicly on the matter, said lawyers for Mr. Musk and the company moved to reopen the talks with the S.E.C. on Friday. During that time, one of Tesla’s lawyers became instrumental in securing a deal with the S.E.C., according to a person familiar with the negotiations.

The whipsaw events of the past few days followed a series of self-inflicted wounds by Mr. Musk.

His tweet about taking his company private, along with attacks on critics on social media, raised concerns with investors about whether Mr. Musk has become too focused on criticism from so-called short-sellers who had been making bets against him and Tesla. The company has recently been struggling to meet audacious production goals for its Model 3 sedan.

Clip: https://nyti.ms/2MBUNia

Mr. Musk is widely regarded by analysts and investors as the creative engine behind Tesla, and he has helped the company become one of the most valuable American carmakers. But Tesla has lurched from crisis to crisis over the past year, and has since scrambled to contain the fallout from Mr. Musk’s tweet.

The company, whose shares have been hit hard since the S.E.C. filed the lawsuit, did not immediately comment on the settlement. On Friday, its stock dropped almost 14 percent.

The terms of the settlement are slightly tougher than those that two people briefed on the talks said Mr. Musk had rejected on Thursday, which called for a two-year bar on serving as chairman and a $10 million fine.

Tesla, which is also settling with the S.E.C., will pay a $20 million penalty. The company was not charged with any fraud.

In addition, the company will add two independent directors and take steps to monitor Mr. Musk’s communications with investors. It will also create a permanent committee of independent directors to monitor disclosures and potential conflicts of interest.

Jay Clayton, the S.E.C. chairman, said the settlement with Mr. Musk and Tesla sent a message that “when companies and corporate insiders make statements, they must act responsibly, including endeavoring to ensure the statements are not false or misleading.”

In settling, Mr. Musk neither admitted nor denied misleading investors under the civil fraud charge, which means he cannot later say he did nothing wrong.

The settlement with the S.E.C. faulted Tesla for failing to make sure that information important to investors was disclosed in a proper and timely manner.

Mr. Musk had a good reason to reopen the settlement talks: The S.E.C., in suing him, had sought to bar him permanently from serving as a top executive or officer of Tesla or any other public company. Under the deal reached on Saturday, he will not only remain as chief executive, but will also stay on as a board member, just not as chairman.

“The total package of remedies and relief announced today are specifically designed to address the misconduct at issue by strengthening Tesla’s corporate governance and oversight in order to protect investors,” said Stephanie Avakian, co-director of the S.E.C.’s enforcement division.

Mr. Musk, according to people familiar with the negotiations, had been concerned about whether settling a civil fraud charge might affect the ability of Tesla and the other companies he runs, including SpaceX and the Boring Company, to raise money from investors in private placements and the debt markets.

But a Tesla spokesman said the S.E.C. had granted waivers to all of those companies so his settlement would not be held against them.

Waivers in such a situation are not uncommon, legal experts have said.

A Tesla spokesman said that Mr. Musk, a billionaire, would be buying $20 million in Tesla stock. The amount of stock being bought by Mr. Musk matches the penalty the company has to pay under the settlement, which was filed in federal court in Manhattan.

The S.E.C. reacted quickly after the Aug. 7 tweet, which caused an immediate surge in Tesla shares. Regulators served a subpoena on the company seeking information and moved to take testimony from Mr. Musk and others at the company, people familiar with the matter said.

Negotiations toward an initial settlement began about a week ago, after the S.E.C. said it was planning to send an official notice to Mr. Musk and Tesla that it was considering filing an enforcement action, those briefed on the talks said. By their account, all the parties thought a deal had been reached by Wednesday evening, and the plan was for a settlement with Mr. Musk and Tesla to be announced on Thursday.

Mr. Musk was said to have backed away from a settlement, in part, because he was concerned that he could not later tell investors that he had not done nothing wrong. But the settlement on Saturday requires him to do that.

In a so-called “admit nor deny” settlement, a settling party cannot later disavow the terms of the settlement.

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After Mr. Musk was said to have rejected the deal on Thursday, his lawyers asked the S.E.C. to wait a couple of days so they could talk him into it, but the regulators said no, said another person familiar with the matter but not authorized to speak publicly.

Once the S.E.C. sued Mr. Musk, his lawyers continued to talk to him about moving forward with a settlement and eventually he agreed, this person said.

In the meantime, Mr. Musk had conversations with investors and friends like Mark Cuban, an entrepreneur who has had his own battles with the S.E.C., and they gave him a sense of how difficult it is to fight one of these suits, even if he eventually won, said people familiar with the negotiations.

The parties worked much of Friday and Saturday to get a deal done.

The settlement clears a big headache for Tesla, but other problems remain.

The S.E.C. is continuing to look into the company’s past claims about its production goals. And now with Mr. Musk agreeing to step down as chairman, Tesla’s board must decide who should replace him.

By Matthew Goldstein

Full link: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/29/business/tesla-musk-sec-settlement.html?emc=edit_na_20180929&nl=breaking-news&nlid=55316184ing-news&ref=headline

 

Sưu tầm – Facebook just announced it was hacked, and almost 50 million users have been affected

Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Getty

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  • Facebook announced a major new security breach on Friday.
  • 50 million users accounts were affected by the attack, in which attackers were able to take over users’ accounts.
  • It’s not yet clear who’s behind the attack.

A hacker gained access to nearly 50 million Facebook user accounts by exploiting a weakness in the social network’s systems, Facebook said on Friday.

News of the cyber attack — which appears to be one of the most significant in Facebook’s history — sent shares of the company down roughly 3% in midday trading on Friday, adding to the pile of woes currently weighing on the company.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg hosted a conference call with journalists shortly after the news was announced, underscoring the severity of the situation.

“We do not yet know whether these accounts were misused but we are continuing to look into this and will update when we learn more,” Zuckerberg said in a blog post published on Friday.

The Silicon Valley tech firm said it discovered on Tuesday that an unknown attacker, or attackers, had taken advantage of a security flaw to take over users’ accounts. The flaw was related to the “View As” feature that lets people see what their own profile looks like through the eyes of another user, Facebook explained.

“This allowed them to steal Facebook access tokens which they could then use to take over people’s accounts,” Facebook’s VP of Product Management Guy Rosen wrote in a separate blog post.

“Access tokens are the equivalent of digital keys that keep people logged in to Facebook so they don’t need to re-enter their password every time they use the app.”

Facebook says it’s not yet clear who is behind the attack.

On the conference call, Rosen said that there was no evidence that users’ private messages had been compromised, but cautioned that that could change as the process continues. It’s also not clear on what grounds people were targered, or why.

The revelation comes a day after a famous Taiwanese hacker publicly declared plans to delete Zuckerberg’s Facebook accountand to livestream the feat. Facebook representatives said on the conference call that they did not believe the cyber attack was related to the Tawainese hacker.

By 

Full link: https://www.businessinsider.com/facebook-security-attack-affecting-50-million-users-2018-9?nr_email_referer=1&utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_content=BISelect&pt=385758&ct=Sailthru_BI_Newsletters&mt=8&utm_campaign=BI%20Select%20Weekend%202018-09-29&utm_term=Business%20Insider%20Select

 

Sưu tầm – The future of Amazon’s Alexa is visual

 

Sưu tầm – Portfolio: Types, built, factors & management

5 Popular Portfolio Types

Stock investors constantly hear about the wisdom of diversification. This concept simply means not putting all of your eggs in one basket, which helps mitigate risk and generally leads to better return on investment. Diversifying your hard-earned dollars does make sense, but there are different ways to diversify, and there are different portfolio types. It’s important to understand that building any kind of portfolio will require research and some effort. Here is some basic information about five different portfolio types and how to get started with each.

The Aggressive Portfolio

An aggressive portfolio portfolio includes those stocks with a high-risk/high-reward proposition. Stocks in this category typically have a high beta, or sensitivity to the overall market. Higher beta stocks consistently experience larger fluctuations relative to the overall market. If your individual stock has a beta of 2.0, it will typically move twice as much as the overall market in either direction.

Most companies with aggressive stock offerings are in the early stages of growth and have a unique value proposition. Building an aggressive portfolio requires an investor who is willing to seek out such companies, because most of them, with a few exceptions, are not going to be common household names. Look online for companies with rapidly accelerating earnings growth have not been discovered by Wall Street. The most common sector to scrutinize would be technology, but many firms in other sectors pursuing an aggressive growth strategy can be considered. Risk management becomes very important when building and maintaining an aggressive portfolio. Keeping losses to a minimum and taking profit are keys to success in this type of investing. (For related reading, see: The Advantages of Investing in Aggressive Companies.)

The Defensive Portfolio

Defensive stocks do not usually carry a high beta and are fairly isolated from broad market movements. Cyclical stocks, on the other hand, are those that are most sensitive to the underlying economic business cycle. For example, during recessionary times, companies that make the basic necessities tend to do better than those focused on fads or luxuries. Despite how bad the economy is, companies that make products essential to everyday life will survive. Think of the essentials in your everyday life and find the companies that make these consumer staple products.

The benefit of buying cyclical stocks is they offer an extra level of protection against detrimental events. Just listen to the business news and you will hear portfolios managers talking about “drugs,” “defense” and “tobacco.” These really are just baskets of stocks the managers are recommending based upon where the business cycle is currently and where they think it is going. However, the products and services of these companies are in constant demand. Many of these companies offer a dividend as well which helps minimize capital losses. A defensive portfolio is prudent for most investors. (For more, see: Guard Your Portfolio With Defensive Stocks.)

The Income Portfolio

An income portfolio focuses on making money through dividends or other types of distributions to stakeholders. These companies are somewhat like the safe defensive stocks but should offer higher yields. An income portfolio should generate positive cash flow. Real estate investment trusts (REITs) and master limited partnerships (MLP) are excellent sources of income-producing investments. These companies return a great majority of their profits back to shareholders in exchange for favorable tax status. REITs are an easy way to invest in real estate without the hassles of owning real property. Keep in mind, however, these stocks are also subject to the economic climate. REITs are groups of stocks that take a beating during an economic downturn, as real estate building and buying activity dries up.

An income portfolio is a nice complement to most people’s paycheck or other retirement income. Investors should be on the lookout for stocks that have fallen out of favor and have still maintained a high dividend policy. These are the companies that can not only supplement income but also provide capital gains. Utilities and other slow growth industries are an ideal place to start your search. (For related reading, see: Dividends Still Look Good After All These Years.)

The Speculative Portfolio

A speculative portfolio is closest to a pure gamble. A speculative portfolio presents more risk than any others discussed here. Finance gurus suggest that a maximum of 10% of one’s investable assets be used to fund a speculative portfolio. Speculative “plays” could be initial public offerings (IPOs) or stocks that are rumored to be takeover targets. Technology or health care firms in the process of researching a breakthrough product, or a junior oil company about to release its initial production results would also fall into this category.

One could argue that the widespread popularity of leveraged ETFs in today’s markets represent speculation. Again, these types of investments are alluring because picking the right one could lead to huge profits in a short amount of time. Speculation may be the one portfolio that, to be done successfully, requires the most homework. Speculative stocks are typically trades, not your classic buy-and-hold investment.

The Hybrid Portfolio

Building a hybrid portfolio means venturing into other investments, such as bonds, commodities, real estate and even art. There is a lot of flexibility in the hybrid portfolio approach. Traditionally, this type of portfolio would contain blue chip stocks and some high grade government or corporate bonds. REITs and MLPs may also be an investable theme for the balanced portfolio. A common fixed income investment strategy approach advocates buying bonds with various maturity dates and is essentially a diversification approach within the bond asset class itself. Basically, a hybrid portfolio would include a mix of stocks and bonds in relatively fixed proportions. This type of approach offers diversification across multiple asset classes, which is beneficial because equities and fixed income securities tend to have a negative correlation with one another. (For related reading, see: An Introduction to Investment Diversification.)

The Bottom Line

At the end of the day, investors should consider all of these portfolios and decide on the right allocation across all five. Building an investment portfolio does require more effort than a passive, index investing approach. By going it alone, you will be required to monitor your portfolio(s) and rebalance more frequently, thus racking up commission fees. Too much or too little exposure to any portfolio type introduces additional risks. Despite the extra required effort, defining and building a portfolio will increase your investing confidence, and give you control over your finances. (For related reading, see: 4 Steps to Building a Profitable Portfolio.)

By Stephan Abraham

Link: https://www.investopedia.com/articles/basics/11/5-popular-portfolio-types.asp?utm_source=personalized&utm_campaign=bouncex&utm_term=14597482&utm_medium=email

4 Steps to Building a Profitable Portfolio

In today’s financial marketplace, a well-maintained portfolio is vital to any investor’s success. As an individual investor, you need to know how to determine an asset allocation that best conforms to your personal investment goals and risk tolerance. In other words, your portfolio should meet your future capital requirements and give you peace of mind while doing so. Investors can construct portfolios aligned to investment strategies by following a systematic approach. Here are some essential steps for taking such an approach.

Step 1: Determining the Appropriate Asset Allocation for You

Ascertaining your individual financial situation and goals is the first task in constructing a portfolio. Important items to consider are age and how much time you have to grow your investments, as well as amount of capital to invest and future income needs. An unmarried college graduate just beginning his or her career needs a different investment strategy than a 55-year-old married person expecting to help pay for a child’s college education and retire in the next decade.

A second factor to consider is your personality and risk tolerance. Are you willing to risk some money for the possibility of greater returns? Everyone would like to reap high returns year after year, but if you can’t sleep at night when your investments take a short-term drop, chances are the high returns from those kinds of assets are not worth the stress.

Clarifying your current situation, your future needs for capital, and your risk tolerance will determine how your investments should be allocated among different asset classes. The possibility of greater returns comes at the expense of greater risk of losses (a principle known as the risk/return tradeoff) – you don’t want to eliminate risk so much as optimize it for your unique condition and style. For example, the young person who won’t have to depend on his or her investments for income can afford to take greater risks in the quest for high returns. On the other hand, the person nearing retirement needs to focus on protecting his or her assets and drawing income from these assets in a tax-efficient manner.

Conservative Vs. Aggressive Investors

Generally, the more risk you can bear, the more aggressive your portfolio will be, devoting a larger portion to equities and less to bonds and other fixed-income securities. Conversely, the less risk you can assume, the more conservative your portfolio will be. Here are two examples: one for a conservative investor and one for the moderately aggressive investor.

Conservative portfolio

The main goal of a conservative portfolio is to protect its value. The allocation shown above would yield current income from the bonds, and would also provide some long-term capital growth potential from the investment in high-quality equities.

Moderately aggressive portfolio

A moderately aggressive portfolio satisfies an average risk tolerance, attracting those willing to accept more risk in their portfolios in order to achieve a balance of capital growth and income.

Step 2: Achieving the Portfolio

Once you’ve determined the right asset allocation, you need to divide your capital between the appropriate asset classes. On a basic level, this is not difficult: equities are equities and bonds are bonds.

But you can further break down the different asset classes into subclasses, which also have different risks and potential returns. For example, an investor might divide the equity portion between different sectors and market capitalizations, and between domestic and foreign stocks. The bond portion might be allocated between those that are short-term and long-termgovernment debt versus corporate debt and so forth.

There are several ways you can go about choosing the assets and securities to fulfill your asset allocation strategy (remember to analyze the quality and potential of each investment you buy – not all bonds and stocks are the same):

  • Stock Picking – Choose stocks that satisfy the level of risk you want to carry in the equity portion of your portfolio – sector, market cap and stock type are factors to consider. Analyze the companies using stock screeners to shortlist potential picks, than carry out more in-depth analysis on each potential purchase to determine its opportunities and risks going forward. This is the most work-intensive means of adding securities to your portfolio, and requires you to regularly monitor price changes in your holdings and stay current on company and industry news. (For details, see 4 Steps To Picking A Stock.)
  • Bond Picking – When choosing bonds, there are several factors to consider including the couponmaturity, the bond type and rating, as well as the general interest-rate environment.
  • Mutual Funds – Mutual funds are available for a wide range of asset classes and allow you to hold stocks and bonds that are professionally researched and picked by fund managers. Of course, fund managers charge a fee for their services, which will detract from your returns. Index funds present another choice; they tend to have lower fees because they mirror an established index and are thus passively managed.
  • Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) – If you prefer not to invest with mutual funds, ETFs can be a viable alternative. ETFs are essentially mutual funds that trade like stocks. They’re similar to mutual funds in that they represent a large basket of stocks – usually grouped by sector, capitalization, country and the like. But they differ in that they’re not actively managed, but instead track a chosen index or other basket of stocks. Because they’re passively managed, ETFs offer cost savings over mutual funds while providing diversification. ETFs also cover a wide range of asset classes and can be useful for rounding out your portfolio.

Step 3: Reassessing Portfolio Weightings

Once you have an established portfolio, you need to analyze and rebalance it periodically, because market movements may cause your initial weightings to change. To assess your portfolio’s actual asset allocation, quantitatively categorize the investments and determine their values’ proportion to the whole.

The other factors that are likely to alter over time are your current financial situation, future needs and risk tolerance. If these things change, you may need to adjust your portfolio accordingly. If your risk tolerance has dropped, you may need to reduce the amount of equities held. Or perhaps you’re now ready to take on greater risk and your asset allocation requires that a small proportion of your assets be held in riskier small-cap stocks.

To rebalance, determine which of your positions are overweighted and underweighted. For example, say you are holding 30% of your current assets in small-cap equities, while your asset allocation suggests you should only have 15% of your assets in that class. Rebalancing involves determining how much of this position you need to reduce and allocate to other classes.

Step 4: Rebalancing Strategically

Once you have determined which securities you need to reduce and by how much, decide which underweighted securities you will buy with the proceeds from selling the overweighted securities. To choose your securities, use the approaches discussed in Step 2.

When selling assets to rebalance your portfolio, take a moment to consider the tax implications of readjusting your portfolio. Perhaps your investment in growth stocks has appreciated strongly over the past year, but if you were to sell all of your equity positions to rebalance your portfolio, you may incur significant capital gains taxes. In this case, it might be more beneficial to simply not contribute any new funds to that asset class in the future while continuing to contribute to other asset classes. This will reduce your growth stocks’ weighting in your portfolio over time without incurring capital gains taxes.

At the same time, always consider the outlook of your securities. If you suspect that those same overweighted growth stocks are ominously ready to fall, you may want to sell in spite of the tax implications. Analyst opinions and research reports can be useful tools to help gauge the outlook for your holdings. And tax-loss selling is a strategy you can apply to reduce tax implications.

Remember the Importance of Diversification

Throughout the entire portfolio construction process, it is vital that you remember to maintain your diversification above all else. It is not enough simply to own securities from each asset class; you must also diversify within each class. Ensure that your holdings within a given asset class are spread across an array of subclasses and industry sectors.

As we mentioned, investors can achieve excellent diversification by using mutual funds and ETFs. These investment vehicles allow individual investors to obtain the economies of scale that large fund managers enjoy, which the average person would not be able to achieve with a small amount of money.

The Bottom Line

Overall, a well-diversified portfolio is your best bet for consistent long-term growth of your investments. It protects your assets from the risks of large declines and structural changes in the economy over time. Monitor the diversification of your portfolio, making adjustments when necessary, and you will greatly increase your chances of long-term financial success.

By Chris Gallant

Link: https://www.investopedia.com/financial-advisor/steps-building-profitable-portfolio/

4 Key Factors To Building A Profitable Portfolio

Portfolio management means different things to different people but, in general, it is a way of balancing risks and rewards. And while the goal of any investment strategy seems straightforward – make money – it often depends on an investor’s circumstances.

For example, a young person who is new to the full-time workforce might reasonably expect his investment portfolio to grow and provide him with a nest egg when he retires. Conversely, an older worker may simply want to hold on to what she has already accumulated. Obviously, to satisfy the desires of both types of investors (along with the desires of others) individualized approaches are needed. Here we look at some ways to measure and improve portfolio Performance.

Measuring Return on Investment (ROI)
The most elemental measurement of a portfolio’s performance is the return on investment, or ROI. By knowing what each dollar invested is likely to yield, individuals can more effectively formulate a logical money-management strategy.

ROI = (Gains – Cost)/Cost

Of course, ROI depends on the types of securities an investor chooses to hold, and this can change as market conditions improve or worsen. Typically, the higher the potential ROI, the higher the risk and vice-versa. Therefore, controlling risk is one of the primary functions of sound portfolio management.

Measuring Risk
Because risk and reward are, in essence, two sides of the same coin, one’s tolerance of the former tends to influence or even dictate the latter. For example, if a person seeks to maintain, rather than grow her current assets, she may want only safe and secure investments in her portfolio. But what is “safe and secure” and how can such an objective be achieved? (For background reading, check out What Is Your Risk Tolerance?)

Generally, there are two ways to mitigate investment risk and still trump the prevailing inflation rate. The first is by carefully selecting securities, as some are obviously riskier than others. While an investor may hit a home run by purchasing a favorite penny stock, there’s always the possibility he’ll strike out. Conversely, a government bondmay not offer the opportunity to trot around the bases often, but it’s not likely to get you tossed out of the game either.

One way to assess risk is by determining the beta of the security under consideration. A beta of 1 indicates that the stock value typically rises and falls in conjunction with the market. Higher and lower betas indicate more or less divergence from the respective market averages. (For more insight, see Beta: Know The Risk.)

Another, more complex, means of evaluating risk is via the Sharpe ratio, which measures risk-adjusted performance by subtracting a risk-free rate, like the 10-year U.S. Treasury bond, from one’s investment returns and dividing the result by the standard deviation of those returns. The greater the ratio, the better the risk-adjusted performance is said to be. (To learn more, check out Understanding The Sharpe Ratio.)

Regardless of how one chooses to quantify it (other methods include alphar-squared and simple standard deviation calculations), risk really boils down to price volatility; hence, the second, and perhaps most popular, method of minimizing risk is through diversification.

It’s no secret that securities like gold and silver typically perform well during market downturns, while others, like technology stocks, do better when the market is surging. By balancing holdings to hedge against different market conditions, investors can achieve relative portfolio stability – even with highly volatile individual investment vehicles.

Getting Diversified
While diversification is good, there is danger in over-diversifying. The whole point of a varied portfolio is to smooth out the peak-and-valley pricing effects brought about by normal market fluctuations and combat longer term stock/market downturns. Anything beyond that can quickly become counterproductive, as curbing downside risksalso involves stifling upside potential.

This middling effect can be easily understood by considering a portfolio comprised solely and equally of the aforementioned gold/silver stocks and technology stocks. In theory, the gold/silver stocks will perform well in bearish markets and not so well in bullish markets, with the reverse holding true for the technology stocks. Of course, the net result is a stagnant portfolio, with gains in one area, offset by losses in another area. (Frustrated stock pickers rejoice. Asset class selection is simpler and safer. For further reading, see Diversification: It’s All About (Asset) Class.)

Avoiding the Lottery Effect
Even worse than a diversity-gone-wild portfolio is one overly reliant on high-risk, high-return investments – even if they are varied and have proved (as much as that is possible) to offer a positive expectation in the long run. The reason for this is simple: The more speculative the investment, the more likely that: A) The promised gains won’t materialize; or B) The investor is faced with a liquidity crisis that requires selling the holdings prematurely and at a loss.

Things to Consider
So, when deciding on the right portfolio blend, keep these things in mind:
1. Goals – Exactly what is it that you are trying to accomplish? Is your objective to accumulate wealth or to hold on to what you already have?

2. Risk Tolerance – How do you handle the day-to-day fluctuations of the market and the consequent rise and fall of your net worth? If you are prone to wild reactions, like checking the sky for swarms of locusts every time your portfolio loses value, it might behoove you to find more stable investments. True, it might take you longer to reach some of the financial goals you’ve set, but at least you’ll sleep at night … and the crops will be safe. (Forget the clichés and uncover how much volatility you can really stand. Read Personalizing Risk Tolerance.)

3. Own What You Know – Often it helps to invest in businesses and industries that you know something about. Acme Widgets may have had a great fourth quarter, but if you know nothing about the widget industry, how do you know that the company will continue to be successful? For that matter, how do you know that people will still be using widgets five to 10 years from now? Obviously, information about a specific business or industry doesn’t necessarily provide the answers to these questions, but it sure doesn’t hurt.

4. When to Buy/Sell – If the stock market has taught us anything recently, it is that Kenny Rogers was right: “You gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em.” Every purchase you make should have a purpose, and you should constantly re-evaluate that purpose according to the market and other conditions.

The Bottom Line
By thoroughly understanding and articulating your monetary goals and being an active participant in your financial planning, it’s possible to grow your investment portfolio safely and steadily – without growing any (more) gray hairs in the process. (Achieve analytical efficiency by applying your evaluation to a key set of stocks. Check out Equity Portfolio Management Mechanics.)

By Derek Simon

Link: https://www.investopedia.com/articles/stocks/10/4-key-portfolio-factors.asp

The Workings of Equity Portfolio Management

The goal of virtually all investment analyses is to make investment decisions or advise others in making their own investment decisions. Therefore, there is an inextricable link between the art and science of equity analysis and equity portfolio management. College finance programs and the CFA Institute’s Chartered Financial Analyst program embody this link by teaching the two concepts side by side. (See also: Brokers and Online Trading.)

As a result, most analysts have a good educational background in both equity analysis and portfolio management subjects like modern portfolio theory (MPT) early in their careers. Analysts frequently turn into portfolio managers over time. (See also: Preparing for a Career as a Portfolio Manager and Modern Portfolio Theory: An Overview.)

Even with a good understanding of equity analysis and MPT, there are certain mechanical elements to portfolio management that must be addressed before actually constructing and running equity portfolios. As is the case with many professions, the real-world application of theoretical investment concepts can involve thinking beyond one’s specialty and training. Running a group of portfolios involves extensive attention to detail, computerization and the need for administrative efficiency. In this article, we’ll explain the mechanics of equity portfolio management and how this system can create a group of different portfolios that perform as a homogeneous element. (See also: Portfolio Management for the Under-30 Crowd.)

Investment Philosophy and the Investment Universe

Professional portfolio managers who work for an investment management company generally do not have a choice about the general investment philosophy used to govern the portfolios they manage. An investment firm may have strictly defined parameters for stock selection and investment management. An example would be a firm defining a value investment selection style using certain trading guidelines. Furthermore, portfolio managers are also usually constrained by market capitalization guidelines. For example, small-cap managers may be limited to selecting stocks in the $200 million to $3 billion market cap range. Therefore, the first step in portfolio management is to understand the universe from which investments may be selected. (See also: Determining What Market Cap Suits Your Style.)

Another philosophical consideration is the analytical approach for the portfolio in question. Some firms or portfolios use a bottom-up approach, where investment decisions are made primarily by selecting stocks without consideration to sector selection or economic forecasts. Other styles may be top-down oriented where portfolio managers pay primary attention to analyzing entire sectors or macroeconomic trends as a starting point for analysis and stock selection. Many styles use a combination of these approaches. (See also: A Top-Down Approach to Investing and Where Top Down Meets Bottom Up.)

Tax Sensitivity

A lot of institutional equity portfolios, such as pension funds, are not taxable. This gives portfolio managers more managerial flexibility than taxable portfolios. Non-taxable portfolios may use greater exposure to dividend income and short-term capital gains than their taxable counterparts. Managers of taxable portfolios may need to pay special attention to stock holding periodstax lotscapital lossestax selling and dividend income generated by portfolios. Taxable portfolios may be more effective with a lower portfolio turnover rate, relative to non-taxable portfolios. Understanding the tax consequences of—or lack thereof—portfolio management activity is of primary importance in building and managing portfolios over time. (See also: Your Dividend Payout: Can You Count on It?)

Building the Portfolio Model

Whether running one portfolio or a thousand portfolios in one equity investment product or style, building and maintaining a portfolio model is a common aspect of equity portfolio management. A portfolio model is a standard against which individual portfolios are matched. Generally, portfolio managers will assign a percentage weighting to every stock in the portfolio model, and then individual portfolios are modified to match up against this weighting mix. Portfolio models are usually computerized using software such as Microsoft Excel or specific portfolio management software tools. (See also: Microsoft Excel Features for the Financially Literate.)

For example, after doing some mix of company analyses, sector analyses and macroeconomic analyses, the portfolio manager may decide that he or she wants to own a relatively large weight of a particular stock. Perhaps in the portfolio manager’s style, a relatively large weighting is 4% of the total portfolio value. By reducing the weighting of other stocks in the portfolio model, or by reducing the overall cash weighting, the portfolio manager would buy enough stocks of a particular company in each portfolio to match up against the 4% model weight. All of the portfolios will look like each other (and the portfolio model), at least in terms of the 4% weighting on that particular stock. (See also: A Guide to Portfolio Construction.)

In this way, the portfolio manager runs all portfolios in a similar or identical fashion given the specific style mandated by that portfolio group. He or she would expect all portfolios in the group to generate returns in a standardized way, relative to each other. All of the portfolios will also be very similar to each other in terms of the risk/rewardprofile. In effect, all of the analytical and security evaluation that the portfolio manager does is run on a model and not on the individual portfolios.

Achieving Portfolio Efficiency

Running all portfolios in a similar way allows a portfolio manager to achieve remarkable analytical efficiency. The portfolio manager only needs to have an understanding of perhaps 30 or 40 stocks owned in similar proportions in all portfolios, rather than 100 or 200 stocks owned in various proportions in a thousand different portfolio accounts. Analysis on the 30 or 40 stocks can be applied to all portfolios easily by changing model weights in the portfolio model over time. As the outlook on individual stocks changes over time, the portfolio manager only needs to change his or her model weightings to reflect the investment decision in all portfolios simultaneously.

The portfolio model can also be used to handle all day-to-day transactions at the individual portfolio level. New accounts can be set up quickly and efficiently by simply “buying against the model.” Cash deposits and withdrawals can be handled in a similar way. If the portfolio is large enough, the model only really needs to be applied to the change in asset size to build a portfolio that looks just like the portfolio model. Smaller portfolios may be limited by stock board lot constraints, which may affect the portfolio manager’s ability to accurately buy or sell to certain percentage weightings. (See also: What’s the Smallest Number of Shares of Stock That I Can Buy?)

Conclusion

Portfolio modeling is a good way to apply analysis and evaluation of a key set of stocks—those that the portfolio manager wants to own—to a set of portfolios in one group or style. Portfolio modeling is an efficient link between equity analysis and portfolio management. As the outlook for individual stocks improves or deteriorates over time, the portfolio manager only needs to change the weightings of those stocks in the portfolio model to optimize the return of all portfolios in the group or style. As long as the individual portfolio accounts are traded efficiently, the group will perform as a homogeneous element.

Read more: The Workings Of Equity Portfolio Management https://www.investopedia.com/articles/financialcareers/07/portfolio_management.asp#ixzz5Sa6T2Shb
Follow us: Investopedia on Facebook

By Bryn Harman

Link: https://www.investopedia.com/articles/financialcareers/07/portfolio_management.asp

 

 

Sưu tầm – The US could learn to like China’s new IP strategy

The protection of Intellectual property rights (IPR) was a taboo topic in China a decade ago. Counterfeiting and piracy were rampant — an inconvenient truth for the general public and an embarrassment for the local and central governments. But today, although IPR infringement is still a serious issue, Chinese policymakers have begun to recognise IPR protection as key to the success of China’s broader economic goals.

People watch a movie at a cinema in Wanda Group's Oriental Movie Metropolis ahead of its opening, in Qingdao, Shandong province, China, 27 April 2018 (Photo: Reuters/Aly Song).

The Chinese government launched the Outline of the National Intellectual Property Strategy in 2008 when the Olympic Games were held in Beijing. The outline indicated that IPR was to become a ‘national strategy’. Counterfeiters and pirates are now confronting new government measures that protect IPR. They aim to safeguard China’s economic interests because innovation and creativity are set to play a dominant role in China’s future economy.

There are three reasons why China needs to pay attention to IPR. First, China needs to make use of IPR to boost its transformation from a ‘factory of the world’ to a ‘factory of knowledge and ideas’. Second, with a more robust IPR system China can remain a large recipient of foreign direct investment. Third, stronger IPR protection can restore the confidence of China’s trading partners.

According to a 2016 IP Industry Report published by Tsinghua University, 61 of the 100 most successful intellectual property media products in China in that year were internet novels. A new IPR ‘production line’ has developed, which allows authors of internet novels and video-sharing websites to gain immensely from new developments in the IPR space.

For instance, the very popular internet novel Journey of Flower was purchased by Ci Wen Media in China. The profit from selling the broadcasting rights to Wunan Cable and the streaming rights to iQiyi was about 168 million RMB (US$24.5 million). The income generated from gaming was estimated to be an additional 300 million RMB (US$43.8 million).

Given China’s slowing growth rate, people are relying more on ‘light luxury’ products such as movies, TV series and internet games. Maintaining the ability to purchase the rights to leading movies and TV programs is one of the easiest ways to satisfy IPR protection for the time being. The next step is to produce and develop TV programs and films with Chinese technology and talent. It looks like China is moving in that direction — Hengdian World Studios is already producing blockbuster films and Wanda Studios is expected to become a global hub for movie making.

China has seen an exponential increase of copyright lawsuits filed over the past decade. In the 10 years to 2016, nearly 87,000 copyright-related cases were filed. In order to protect IPR, 3908 websites have been shut down to combat copyright infringement in the past five years.

China is determined to create its own global brands and so IPR protection has become imperative. As Chinese IPR develops, foreign companies have to act fast to keep up with the new processes.

Increasingly, IPR protection has been integrated into China’s long-term economic reform strategy. The past 40 years of breakneck growth has given way to a new normal requiring more qualitative and tech-sensitive policy. The national technology innovation priority of the 13th Five-Year Planhighlights the significance of high-tech development as a main focus for China. In addition, Made in China 2025 — launched by the State Council in May 2015 — is a technological blueprint designed to transform the Chinese economy. China is increasingly less reliant on manufacturing. Instead, innovation and technology will drive its economy over the next 10 years.

One of the key messages of Trump’s China trade war is that IPR infringements matter. China is still on the Priority Watch List of the 2018 Special 301 Report. The United States is the most out-spoken country on this issue, probably because it is still the most innovative country in the world and so has the largest stake in intellectual property protection. But the United States needs to understand that the mentality of the Chinese government has changed. Beijing is serious about IPR protection. It knows that if it fails to protect IPR, the next phase of its own economic development may prove shaky.

Author: Gordon C K Cheung

Full link: http://www.eastasiaforum.org/2018/09/29/the-us-could-learn-to-like-chinas-new-ip-strategy/

 

Sưu tầm – China’s 5G a bigger threat than trade war, says ex-Dallas Fed chief

Former CEO Fisher claims US fears Chinese tech hegemony

TOKYO — As the U.S. and China trade punches in their escalating trade war, the more important worry between the two countries is who will dominate cyberspace, particularly in fifth-generation, 5G, mobile networks and related technologies, according to Richard Fisher, former president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

“I don’t believe ultimately the issue has to do with trade and physical goods,” said Fisher in an interview with the Nikkei Asian Review. “The real concern of the U.S. is the cyberspace issue: That is, who leads and wins the race for fifth-generation mobile networks, internet speed and latency?”

New 5G technology transmits data 100 times faster than current 4G networks and is expected to be used in autonomous cars, the internet of things and other emerging technologies that require ultra-high-speed communication. Commercialization of 5G is expected to be implemented in 2019.

“If China were to win the race, they would establish the protocols for the internet, just as English replaced German as the language of science and became the language of all crucial activity on a global scale,” added Fisher.

The U.S. accuses China of violating intellectual property rights through such means as forced technology transfers from American companies and hacking, and demands that Beijing scrap the “Made in China 2025” high-tech manufacturing initiative. Meanwhile, citing security concerns, Australia banned Chinese companies, including Huawei Technologies and ZTE, from supplying 5G equipment to the country.

Both moves reflect fears of Chinese hegemony over the tech domain.

Fisher, on the other hand, is optimistic about U.S. outcomes in the current trade conflict, saying that “mathematics work in our favor in a short time [because] we buy $500 billion of products from China and we also have the power to redistribute the supply chain.”

As president of the Dallas Fed from 2005 to 2015, Fisher commented on the failure of monetary and fiscal policy in emerging markets. “Turkey, Indonesia, Argentina and other emerging countries made bad decisions, as they borrowed more in dollars and loaded up on dollars,” he said.

Turkey’s lira lost 40% of its value against the dollar this year, hit by Erdogan’s intervention on monetary policy and diplomatic spat with the U.S. Turkey’s annual consumer price inflation hit 17.9% in August, its highest level since late 2003. Although the country’s central bank raised the benchmark rate by 6.25% on Sept. 13, this has not fundamentally ended the country’s inflation.

At the beginning of September, Indonesia’s rupiah was trading at near its weakest levels in 20 years, losing around 9% of its value this year.

“They should be taking advantage of cheap rates to restructure their economy and making themselves more responsible, but that is not what happened,” said Fisher.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Federal Reserve voted in June to raise the target for its benchmark interest rates by 0.25%, citing solid economic expansion and job gains. A majority of Fed officials also forecast two more rate hikes this year while emerging markets struggle with higher U.S. interest rates.

The former CEO pronounced that emerging markets “will have no impact on determining the direction of monetary policy of the U.S., unless they are perceived as presenting a systemic risk to us and the rest of the world.”

Fisher, who is currently a senior adviser for Barclays, repeatedly mentioned the robust U.S. economy under the administration of President Donald Trump. Cutting tax rates and de-emphasizing regulation “have given small- to medium-size companies confidence for the future, boosting their investment.”

His outlook for the U.S. economy remains bullish, as “we no longer talk about being stuck at 2% growth, now closer to 3 or maybe higher.” He expects that the Fed will likely to “continue to raise interest rates even beyond the market expects, because  that allows latitude to cut rates sufficiently when the business cycle begins to downturn.”

By ERI SUGIURA

Full link: https://asia.nikkei.com/Economy/China-s-5G-a-bigger-threat-than-trade-war-says-ex-Dallas-Fed-chief?utm_campaign=RN%20Free%20newsletter&utm_medium=one%20time%20newsletter%20free&utm_source=NAR%20Newsletter&utm_content=article%20link

 

Info – A Data-Driven Look At Dark Web Marketplaces

dark web markets

In 2018, ex-Google CEO, Eric Schmidt, made headlines after predicting the internet would eventually split into two halves – one dominated by China and the other by the United States.

While that vision of the future may come to pass, the internet already has a noteworthy division (coincidentally related to Google): indexed and non-indexed. The indexed internet is what we’re all familiar with, everything from gif-laden Geocities websites to the webpage you’re reading this on.

Parts of the non-indexed portion of the internet may be familiar as well. This includes services like online banking, or content behind paywalls or sign-in forms. Most of this part of the internet – referred to as the Deep Web – is non-indexed.

surface deep dark web diagram

DIPPING BELOW THE SURFACE

Beyond easily accessible areas of the internet, lies the Dark Web, which is primarily accessed using specific software such as Tor or I2P. Practically speaking, connection requests via TOR are re-routed several times before reaching their destination. This allows people to maintain their anonymity while accessing dark web content.

The Dark Web lives in the public consciousness as a digital Wild West; a place where every vice can be explored and procured within the vacuum of lawlessness. There’s truth to the reputation, as dark net markets sell everything from illegal drugs to databases of stolen personal information.

One of the first and most well known of these markets was The Silk Road, which opened at the beginning of 2011. Around the time of its first anniversary, the market reached an estimated $22 million in annual sales.

THE SHORT SHELF LIFE OF MARKETS

Not surprisingly, governments are not thrilled at the idea of unregulated (and untaxed) markets operating in the dark web. Law enforcement and three-letter agencies have thrown considerable efforts into shutting them down, though with mixed results.

A raid on The Silk Road in 2013 did end the reign of the popular marketplace, but it had the effect of spawning dozens of new markets to help fill the void. That said, only a few end up lasting more than a year and the average lifespan of a dark web market is just eight months.

Some markets close down, or were simply a scam to begin with, but larger markets tend to fall victim to raids by law enforcement. High profile examples include Operation Onymous (2014), and Operations Bayonet and GraveSec (2017), which shut down the popular markets AlphaBay and Hansa. To give an idea of scale, Hansa reportedly offered more than 24,000 drug product listings at its height.

According to Europe’s drug monitoring organization, EMCDDA, there are currently nine active markets. If history is any guide though, many of them will be gone by year’s end.

While giants like Google and Amazon may rule the indexed web, the commercial landscape below the surface is shifting constantly.

Full link: http://www.visualcapitalist.com/data-driven-look-dark-web-marketplaces/

 

Ẩm thực – 14 Easy to Make Weight Loss Smoothies

One of the crucial mistakes people make when they are trying to lose weight is tossed a bunch of vegetables or fruits in the blender/food processor, prepare a smoothie, and think everything will be better.

But the secret lies in a balanced smoothie with more protein than sugar.

When you add one banana, apple, peach, some berries, and honey in a smoothie, you are getting much more sugar than your body can process

Smoothie Recipes for Weight Loss

Here are some smoothie recipes for weight loss that I have tried and can vouch for them.

weight loss smoothies

Blueberry Smoothie

Who says that simple smoothies cannot be helpful?

This weight loss smoothie is based on blueberries, a fruit rich in antioxidants and vitamin C.

You need:

  • one cup of blueberries
  • one cup of milk
  • one tablespoon of flaxseeds

Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie

With just peanut butter and banana, this smoothie gets a milkshake-like consistency.

You need:

  • one medium sized banana
  • one tablespoon of peanut butter
  • one cup of almond milk

Terrific Banana Drink

Banana drink

You’ll notice that banana is among the main ingredient in this list, thanks to its low calories – high nutrients ratio.

For two servings of this smoothie you need:

  • 1 banana
  • 1 orange
  • ½ glass low-fat or fat-free yogurt (Greek Yoghurt)
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • ¼ tbsp. ginger powder
  • 2 tbsps. flax seed
  • 2 tbsps. Whey powder

Spinach and Avocado

Spinach Avocado Smoothie

For two servings of this smoothie, you need:

  • one avocado
  • one cup of spinach
  • one medium banana
  • a tablespoon of peanut butter (try to use natural peanut butter)
  • one cup of milk

You can use it as a meal replacement in the morning as it provides you with sugar, vitamin C, and protein to last until the next meal.

Raspberry and Banana

Raspberry Banana smoothie

Raspberries give this smoothie a little sour flavor, but you’ll get tons of healthy nutrients.

Ingredients are:

  • one banana
  • one cup of raspberries
  • one cup of coconut milk

Chocolate Raspberry Smoothie

I know I said at the beginning you need to watch your sugar with the smoothies, but you can add some chocolate if you want.

For this recipe you need:

  • half a cup of soy milk
  • 6 oz of vanilla yogurt
  • one cup of raspberries
  • ¼ chocolate chips or dark chocolate

Chocolate Cherry Smoothie

As with most chocolate smoothies, you need to use soy milk or nut milk to avoid sugar.

For this recipe you need:

  • one cup of soy milk
  • one tablespoon of cocoa powder
  • two cups of cherries
  • one small size banana
  • two tablespoons of chia seeds

Mixed Berries Weight Loss Smoothie

Berries are rich in antioxidants, and people usually opt only for blueberries in their smoothies.

But you can mix several berries for an antioxidant-rich drink.

Make sure to use unsweetened coconut milk.

For two servings:

  • one cup of coconut or almond milk
  • one cup of blueberries
  • one cup of blackberries
  • one cup of strawberries
  • five dates

Orange and Citrus Smoothie

Citrus Smoothie

People forget how beneficial citrus fruits are for weight loss purposes.

Thanks to their richness in vitamin C, acids, and antioxidants, they can put your metabolism and fat burning rate into overdrive.

For this smoothie you need:

  • 1 cup of soy milk
  • 6oz of lemon yogurt
  • one grapefruit
  • one orange
  • a tablespoon of flaxseeds

Apple Smoothie

For just one serving you need:

  • ½ cup of soy milk
  • 6oz vanilla yogurt
  • one medium apple
  • 2 tablespoon of peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon of apple pie spice

Peach Milkshake

Due to the high density and consistency, many of the smoothies for weight loss look like milkshakes.

But nothing comes close to the peach milkshake.

For one serving you need:

  • 1 cup of almond milk
  • 1 cup of peaches
  • Half a banana
  • a teaspoon of coconut oil

Pineapple Smoothie

The good thing about the pineapple smoothie is that you can use any milk.

Pineapples are not rich in sugar, so they be used with normal milk, but if you like to maximize the potential of this smoothie for weight loss, use almond, nut or soy milk.

  • one cup of milk
  • 4oz canned pineapple tidbits
  • 1 tablespoon of flaxseeds

Strawberry Smoothie

Strawberry Smoothie

I mentioned previously that berries are excellent ingredients for a smoothie for weight loss.

Strawberries are some kind of underrated in that regard, so I would like to share with you my strawberry smoothie.

From ingredients standpoint, you need:

  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 cup of strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons of flaxseeds

Berries and Pomegranate

Another berries smoothie, this one comes packed with protein and healthy fats.

Here are the ingredients for two servings:

  • 1 cup of blueberries
  • 2 cups of strawberries
  • some hemp seeds
  • 1 teaspoon of acai berry powder
  • ½ cup pomegranate juice
  • ½ teaspoon flaxseed oil
  • ½ teaspoon coconut oil
  • ¼ avocado

by

Full link: https://healthyhomestead.com/weight-loss-smoothies

Share – Những nhà lãnh đạo giỏi chắc chắn không bỏ qua 20 danh ngôn đúc kết về nghệ thuật “đứng trên vạn người” này — Ngon 24h

1. Tài lãnh đạo dựa trên sự truyền cảm hứng, không phải sự chi phối. Và dựa trên sự hợp tác, không phải sự dọa dẫm. – William Arthur Ward – 2. Đổi mới là điều tạo ra sự khác biệt giữa người lãnh đạo và kẻ phục tùng. – Steve Jobs – 3. Tài […]

via Những nhà lãnh đạo giỏi chắc chắn không bỏ qua 20 danh ngôn đúc kết về nghệ thuật “đứng trên vạn người” này — Ngon 24h

1. Tài lãnh đạo dựa trên sự truyền cảm hứng, không phải sự chi phối. Và dựa trên sự hợp tác, không phải sự dọa dẫm. – William Arthur Ward –

2. Đổi mới là điều tạo ra sự khác biệt giữa người lãnh đạo và kẻ phục tùng. – Steve Jobs –

3. Tài sản quý nhất của các doanh nghiệp chính là con người. – Matsushita Kōnosuke –

4 .Người lãnh đạo nên là người nhìn xa trông rộng và có tầm nhìn tốt hơn nhân viên.

Người lãnh đạo nên có sự gai góc và kiên trì cao hơn, và có thể chịu đựng được những gì mà nhân viên không thể.

Người lãnh đạo nên có sức chịu đựng và khả năng chấp nhận thất bại cao hơn.

Vì vậy, phẩm chất của một người lãnh đạo tốt nằm ở tầm nhìn, sự ngoan cường và năng lực. – Jack Ma –

5. Nếu bạn muốn trở thành người lãnh đạo có thể thu hút những người tài ba, mấu chốt là chính mình trở thành một người tài ba. – Jim Rohn –

Những nhà lãnh đạo giỏi chắc chắn không bỏ qua 20 danh ngôn đúc kết về nghệ thuật đứng trên vạn người này - Ảnh 1.

6. Người bình thường làm việc ở mức năm mươi phần trăm hoặc ít hơn so với tiềm năng của họ. Việc của bạn là giải phóng năm mươi phần trăm còn lại. – Brian Tracy –

7. Lãnh đạo, phục tùng, hoặc cuốn xéo. – Thomas Paine  –

8. Một công ty muốn phát triển được nhanh thì phải giỏi trong việc tìm ra nhân tài, đặc biệt là những nhân tài thông minh. – Bill Gates –

9. Người lãnh đạo không bao giờ nên so sánh kỹ năng kỹ thuật của mình với nhân viên. Nhân viên của bạn nên có kỹ năng kỹ thuật tốt hơn bạn. Nếu không phải thế thì có nghĩa là bạn đã tuyển nhầm người. – Jack Ma –

10. Thách thức của tài lãnh đạo là mạnh mẽ nhưng không thô lỗ; tử tế nhưng không yếu đuối; bạo dạn nhưng không lấn lướt; thận trọng nhưng không lười biếng; khiêm nhường nhưng không nhút nhát; kiêu hãnh nhưng không kiêu ngạo; hài hước nhưng không nực cười. – Jim Rohn –

Những nhà lãnh đạo giỏi chắc chắn không bỏ qua 20 danh ngôn đúc kết về nghệ thuật đứng trên vạn người này - Ảnh 2.

11. Nếu hành động của bạn thôi thúc người khác ước mơ nhiều hơn, học tập nhiều hơn, hành động nhiều hơn, và trở nên tốt đẹp hơn, bạn chính là một nhà lãnh đạo thật sự. – John Quincy Adams –

12. Đừng bao giờ ra thứ mệnh lệnh không thể phục tùng. – Douglas MacArthur –

13.  Những nhà lãnh đạo kinh doanh xuất sắc tạo ra tầm nhìn, xác định rõ tầm nhìn, mạnh mẽ nắm lấy tầm nhìn và không ngừng thúc đẩy nó tới khi hoàn thiện. – Thomas Hardy –

14. Gương mẫu là lãnh đạo. – Albert Schweitzer –

15. Một trong những thử thách của sự lãnh đạo là khả năng nhận ra vấn đề trước khi nó trở thành sự tình khẩn cấp. – Arnold H. Glasow –

Những nhà lãnh đạo giỏi chắc chắn không bỏ qua 20 danh ngôn đúc kết về nghệ thuật đứng trên vạn người này - Ảnh 3.

16. Nghệ thuật lãnh đạo là nói không, không phải nói có. Rất dễ để nói có. – Tony Blair –

17. Lý lẽ và khả năng phán đoán là phẩm chất của người lãnh đạo. – Tacitus –

18. Người lãnh đạo bỏ 5% thời gian cho rắc rối và 95% thời gian cho giải pháp. Hãy vượt qua và nghiền nát nó! – Tony Robbins –

19. Chúng ta phải im lặng trước khi có thể lắng nghe.

Chúng ta phải lắng nghe trước khi có thể học hỏi.

Chúng ta phải học hỏi trước khi có thể chuẩn bị.

Chúng ta phải chuẩn bị trước khi có thể phụng sự.

Chúng ta phải phụng sự trước khi có thể dẫn đường. –  William Arthur Ward  –

20. Nếu như công ty bạn là một chiếc xe, hãy mời những người thích hợp lên xe và những người không thích hợp xuống xe. – James C.Collins  –