Equity Advisory

Are you looking for an honest, transparent and independent equity research and advisory? www.intelsense.in is run by Abhishek Basumallick for retail investors. Subscribe for long term wealth creation.

Thursday 30 September 2021

Weekend Reading


Reading across disciplines is one of the best ways to improve our investment acumen. Here is a summary of some of the best articles I read this week. If you like this collection, consider forwarding it to someone who you think will appreciate it.

1. How does  YouTube recommendation work?

We start with the knowledge that everyone has unique viewing habits. Our system then compares your viewing habits with those that are similar to you and uses that information to suggest other content you may want to watch. So if you like tennis videos and our system notices that others who like the same tennis videos as you also enjoy jazz videos, you may be recommended jazz videos, even if you’ve never watched a single one before.


 A number of signals build on each other to help inform our system about what you find satisfying: clicks, watchtime, survey responses, sharing, likes, and dislikes.


With all that, why don’t we simply remove borderline content? Misinformation tends to shift and evolve rapidly, and unlike areas like terrorism or child safety, often lacks a clear consensus. Also, misinformation can vary depending on personal perspective and background. We recognize that sometimes, this means leaving up controversial or even offensive content. So we continue to heavily focus on building responsible recommendations and take meaningful steps to prevent our system from widely recommending this content.




2. Can glowing plants help in reducing power consumption on street lighting?

A decent chunk of energy usage goes towards lighting, so scientists at MIT are developing a new kind of passive lighting – glow-in-the-dark plants. In the latest experiment, the team has made them glow much brighter than the first generation plants, without harming their health.


The emerging field of “plant nanobionics” involves embedding nanoparticles into plants to give them new abilities. Now, the researchers have boosted the brightness to more practical levels. The key was to switch the glowing components from luciferase and luciferin – which give fireflies their glow – to phosphor materials. These materials absorb and store visible and ultraviolet light, and slowly release it as phosphorescence.


After being exposed to light from the Sun or LEDs, the plants will glow green. The team tested the technique on a range of plants, including watercress, tobacco, basil, daisies and elephant ear, and found that just 10 seconds of exposure to blue LEDs makes the plants glow for up to an hour. As might be expected, the light is at its brightest in the first few minutes, before dimming over the next hour. The light was 10 times brighter than the previous version, and importantly, the nanoparticle implants didn’t harm the plants’ normal functions, such as photosynthesis and evaporating water through their leaves.



3. Health data at our fingertips

(this article ties in well with my four pillars theory - http://blog.intelsense.in/2021/08/the-four-pillars-of-future-business.html)

I have detailed data on thousands of publicly traded companies at my fingertips. I can essentially access the financial health of virtually all household brands at the press of a button. But when I try to perform the same exercise (accessing data) on humans, including myself, it’s much harder.


What is my cholesterol? Respiratory rate? Resting heart rate? Posture/alignment? Sleep patterns? Blood oxygen level? Blood sugar level? The vast majority of us are totally in the dark on these metrics.


The good news is — this is changing.


Companies are using sensors and biometric data to provide much more detailed information to consumers. The technology is improving quickly and the costs are coming down, allowing for accessibility more broadly.


I bet we will look back in ten years and have a hard time believing we were all managing the stresses of life without the tools and information to help us optimize and make better decisions regarding what we eat, when we eat, when we go to sleep, what temperature is optimal for sleep, when to rest, and when to push.



4. Principles of peak performance from sports psychology

There are five major skills related to sport psychology that transfer from sport to business. Some of these sport psychology principles and techniques can be applied in a large variety of business settings, leadership, and teamwork. These skills she identified in regards to mental training are:

  • Mental imagery
  • Performance routines
  • Positive self-talk
  • Activation control strategies
  • Focus and sustaining attention



5. Is wind & solar energy the answer to our energy problems?

Electric vehicles will likely not deliver the necessary carbon reduction many people are expecting. In Norway, electric vehicle sales have gone from zero to nearly 60% penetration between 2010 and 2019. Despite such a dramatic shift away from oil, Norway’s carbon intensity has declined by 10% compared with 11% in the US where EVs remain less than 2% of all vehicle sales.


Wind and solar are extremely inefficient generators of electricity due to their low energy density and their intermittency. A solar panel likely only dispatches between 12% and 20% of its rated capacity due to the intermittency of sunshine. A wind turbine is somewhat better, but still less than 25%. As a result, excess capacity must be built to generate the necessary electricity. Moreover, the power must be “buffered” by a storage system to smooth out the inherent variability coming from both short-term dislocations (clouds and periods of calm), as well as different patterns between day and night.


Wind and solar would mark the first time we have seen a widespread shift into a much less efficient source of energy conversion. It has never happened in the past, and the only way it can happen in the future is if governments subsidize wind and solar (as is being done right now), or outlaw old hydrocarbon-based technologies—now being threatened. In either case (subsidy or outlaw), government intervention is the only way people would likely adopt new energy conversion technologies with inferior efficiencies.



No comments:

Post a Comment