Former Intel CEO Andy Grove Dies at 79

22. March 2016

Date: 22-03-2016
Source: The Wall Street Journal

No cause of death immediately disclosed

Grove CCAndrew S. Grove, the Holocaust survivor who turned Intel Corp. into one of high tech’s most influential trendsetters, died at the age of 79.

No cause of death was immediately disclosed. Mr. Grove, who successfully fought a well-publicized battle against prostate cancer, had suffered from Parkinson’s disease in recent years.

The Hungarian-born executive, Time magazine’s Man of the Year in 1997, helped Intel weather a wrenching transition in the 1980s from supplying memory chips—a commodity product facing tough competition from Asia—into the dominant maker of microprocessors that serve as the calculating engines for most computers. Along the way, Mr. Grove helped turn Intel into one of the few consumer brands to emerge from the semiconductor industry.

“Probably no one person has had a greater influence in shaping Intel, Silicon Valley, and all we think about today in the technology world than Andy Grove,” said Pat Gelsinger, a longtime Intel manager who is now CEO of software maker VMware Inc. “I would not be where I am or who I am if it were not for the enormous influence of Andy as a mentor and friend for 30 years.” Read the rest of this entry »

Accounting’s 21st Century Challenge: How to Value Intangible Assets

22. March 2016

Date: 22-03-2016
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Issue takes on growing significance as companies rely more on holdings like brands, data and algorithms

When RadioShack Corp. filed for bankruptcy protection last year, it raised more than $170 million by selling such holdings as real estate, leases and inventories of smartphones, computer cables and cameras.

But the retailer’s books didn’t acknowledge two of its most valuable assets: its brand and its customer data.

How do you attach a price tag to something you can’t see or touch?

The question is increasingly significant for investors as more companies collect information about their customers and use it to develop products and services. Some companies rely on the hipness of their brands to propel sales.

Assigning a value to a physical asset like a store or equipment is relatively easy. But, in the murky world of intangible assets, the calculations are squishy. The problem of how to value such assets has vexed accountants for decades. Read the rest of this entry »

Where Computers Defeat Humans, and Where They Can’t

16. March 2016

Date: 16-03-2016
Source: The New York Times

By ANDREW McAFEE (right) and ERIK BRYNJOLFSSON (left)McAfeeBrynjolfsson CC

ALPHAGO, the artificial intelligence system built by the Google subsidiary DeepMind, has just defeated the human champion, Lee Se-dol, four games to one in the tournament of the strategy game of Go.

Why does this matter? After all, computers surpassed humans in chess in 1997, when IBM’s Deep Blue beat Garry Kasparov. So why is AlphaGo’s victory significant?

Like chess, Go is a hugely complex strategy game in which chance and luck play no role. Two players take turns placing white or black stones on a 19-by-19 grid; when stones are surrounded on all four sides by those of the other color they are removed from the board, and the player with more stones remaining at the game’s end wins. Read the rest of this entry »

Business Models, Information Technology, and the Company of the Future

4. March 2016

Date: 04-03-2016
Source: Technology Review

by Haim Mendelson

Information technology has, of course, played a major role in reshaping business models over the past 20 years.

The basic social conventions of the preceding Industrial Era were all built around the notion that people physically moved in response to needs. For instance, if you wanted to buy something, you went to a store. If you wanted to build something, you worked in a factory.

But in the Internet economy, value creation doesn’t require that kind of physical movement, and income accumulates not in the form of cash, but in terms of clicks.

By changing the focus of innovation from atoms to bits, and from hardware to software, IT has dramatically accelerated the process of new business-model creation. Developments such the convergence of virtual and physical identities, models and reality, and those atoms and bits are likely to change the nature of the firm and, with it, the essence of innovation. Read the rest of this entry »