China’s competitive edge has long been its vast supply of cheap hands. But as the country grows richer, skills shortages are driving wages rapidly up. Foxconn’s decision to alter its mix of capital and labour is thus logical, and mirrors what many smaller firms are already doing.
According to the Oxford study, “occupations that involve complex perception and manipulation tasks, creative intelligence tasks, and social intelligence tasks are unlikely to be substituted by computer capital over the next decade or two.”
Russia’s invasion of the Crimea could push the country into a sharp recession. Yet Moscow’s war on Internet freedom should spook investors even more. It risks long term damage to Russia’s economy, according to a recent report by Dalberg. President Putin should change course and support a free and open Internet before it’s too late.
As Werner Vogels, Amazon’s chief technology officer, said in last week’s BBC article on retailing: “You can never have too much data. Bigger is definitely better. The more data you can collect the finer-grained the results can be.”
Earth-bound challenges will determine the success of Facebook and Google’s plans to use balloons, drones and satellites to spread Internet access.
Most encouragingly, most of this progress has taken place in the developing world, which has accounted for 90% of global net additions for mobile cellular and 82% of global net additions of new Internet users since early 2010, when the Commission was set up.
Some respondents said privacy would be a luxury of the few and that the internet-fueled future may widen the gap between the rich and the poor.
Facebook may be riding on the coattails of opposition to NSA surveillance, suggested Mukul Krishna, digital media senior global director at Frost & Sullivan.
For Zuckerberg, who once famously said, in effect, that privacy was dead, “this is a really nice way to get onto the bandwagon and say Facebook’s looking out for the interests of subscribers,” Krishna said.
Such uncertainty about our collective digital future demands careful scrutiny of our governing practices today, and necessitates the development of visionary information policies which comprehensively confront these complex dilemmas.
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