Robots get sleeker. Microsoft catches cheaters. Really ugly websites.
Read this stuff
The newsletter has had a section called The Blurb for a while that contains articles that we think are worth reading.
Today, we’re highlighting a few.
But first, some data.
Cobots > robots?
Robots have made improvements to factory work, but they’ve also been plagued by issues with vision, dexterity, and low ROI.
Enter cobots: lighter weight, lower cost bots that can work collaboratively with humans in industrial settings.
We explore how companies are using cobots to tackle common tech challenges faced by robots, and how cobots are changing the economics of different industries.
Absolute power corrupts absolutely
In The Blurb, you’ll find an article by Jerry Useem from The Atlantic that talks about how power affects the brain. People under the influence of power sometimes act like they’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury.
Power makes people more impulsive and less empathetic.
It actually makes leaders lose the qualities that got them to power in the first place.
Chef’d gets f’d
This week, meal kit company Chef’d unexpectedly shut down, laying off 350 employees. It had raised $40M in funding, earning it a spot on our list of the biggest, costliest startup failures of all time.
Can’t win ‘em all
James Clear’s essay on the 3 stages of failure is worth a read. The 3 stages are:
Failure of tactics
Failure of strategy
Failure of vision
I found the below on failure of tactics quite interesting, especially in the context of scaling a company.
Tactics are something you constantly need to re-evaluate.
Microsoft’s recently published patent application proposes using behavior-analyzing machine learning to detect cheating in video games. This is a move to integrate information between a gaming platform like Xbox and a third-party game.
Microsoft’s recent moves in gaming could come up in tomorrow’s earnings call. Check out our analysis so you’re in the know.
The hotel bathroom puzzle
The Blurb also features an essay by Alec Nevala-Lee, who discusses one of the most famous case studies in the history of design.
For those of you who are building something, it is a great reminder to think about design, and has this warning worth remembering:
“When simple things need instructions, it is a certain sign of poor design.”
Puberty is rough — even for tech companies. If you had seen Uber’s website in 2011, you might not have predicted it would eventually be worth $68B. And it’s not alone.