The next frontier in the fight against hunger may be manufacturing food through 3-D printers.
by Christopher Mims Anjan Contractor’s 3D food printer might evoke visions of the “replicator” popularized in Star Trek, from which Captain Picard was constantly interrupting himself to order tea. And indeed Contractor’s company, Systems & Materials Research Corporation, just got a six month, $125,000 grant from NASA to create a prototype of his universal food synthesizer.But Contractor, a mechanical engineer with a background in 3D printing, envisions a much more mundane—and ultimately more important—use for the technology.
The Federal Reserve chairman has been working like a dog to keep the economy moving, he told Congress today, but they’re not pulling their weight. He's absolutely right.
You’re doing it wrong!That was the gist of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s opening statement in front of the Congressional Joint Economic Committee on Wednesday morning. The Fed is doing its job, but Congress and the White House are being counterproductive.The economy is moving in the right direction, but not fast enough for anyone’s liking. Asset prices are getting a nice lift—in part from the underlying performance of the economy and in part from the Federal Reserve’s easy money policies.
eBooks are finally changing how we write, as well as how we read
Don't get me wrong--I love ebooks. These days, I rarely read paper unless I have to. But while ebooks are certainly more convenient, until recently, they haven't exactly been revolutionary. It was a book on a screen. You pressed a button to turn pages. It was great for the consumer, but it was still basically the same old book. That's starting to change. The last few years have seen the rise of the Kindle Single, which has actually started to change the economics of the book market.
Introduced by Microsoft.
Cue parents complaining about lack of time children spend outdoors. On Tuesday Microsoft introduced its newest Xbox videogame console. Despite the Xbox having been a rare success in innovation for the company in the past decade, the market it enters today, filled with tablets and smartphones, is intensely competitive. Microsoft is hoping for a big success with Xbox, as its recent releases of consumer products like Windows 8 and Surface have tanked.
Shorten summer shutdowns.
Keep ’em coming! The Big Three American auto companies—Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler—are planning to increase production this summer as demand for new cars and trucks continues to grow. Normally factories for the automakers have shut down for two weeks each summer, but Ford’s will do so only for a week, GM’s not at all, and Chrysler will have a break at only four of its 10 plants.
It’s too soon to tell whether climate change worsens tornadoes. But the real lesson, says 'Overheated' author Andrew T. Guzman, is that we ought to ignore the noise from zealots and listen to the scientists.
It seems that every major weather-related event becomes a skirmish in the climate-change wars. The terrible tornado that hit Moore, Oklahoma is no exception. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, for example, suggested a connection between the tornado and climate change. Climate change deniers responded in the usual way, with accusations of fear-mongering.With respect to the connection between climate and tornadoes, things seem to have already settled down and most media discussions seem to be getting the question about right.
Jamie Dimon roundly defeated a move to split his roles of CEO and chairman, despite JPMorgan Chase’s many problems. Some things never change, writes Daniel Gross (who told you so).
The closing music at the JPMorgan Chase annual shareholder meeting in Tampa on Tuesday was a strange but fitting choice: “That’s Just the Way It Is,” the pious Bruce Hornsby lament over an unfair status quo.The song was an anticlimactic ending to a shareholder meeting that had initially promised fireworks. This was to be a showdown, a demonstration of how the new age of post-bailout investor democracy would put entrenched management in its place.
Joint venture with Manchester City and the Yankees.
New York–area fans already have a bunch of sports franchises to root for, but soon they'll have another professional team to get behind. In 2015 the Big Apple will add a Major League Soccer squad to the roster. The New York City Football Club will be a joint venture between Manchester City, which is fronting about $100 million for the expansion team, and the Yankees, which will own about 25 percent of the squad. The team is still looking for a home and will likely play its first season at Yankee Stadium. Manchester officials are hoping to build an arena in Flushing Meadows in Queens.
By Mark Koba Despite the sequester—huge cutbacks in federal spending that were mandated by law in March—some high-level federal executives are scheduled to get millions of dollars in bonuses, unless there's a law to stop them.According to a report released Friday by the Senate Subcommittee on Financial and Contracting Oversight, the bonuses must be paid under current congressional regulations, even with some $85 billion in government funding cuts in effect.
“We don’t depend on tax gimmicks.”
Don’t worry about having to change your tax policies too much, Tim Cook—you’re not a Tea Party group seeking tax exemptions. Apple CEO Tim Cook insisted in his testimony before the Senate Permanent Subcommittee Investigations that his company does not avoid paying billions of dollars in U.S. taxes by building tax havens overseas. “We pay all the taxes we owe—every single dollar,” Cook said. “We don’t depend on tax gimmicks.” Cook said he advocates a change to the tax code, and he made sure to note that Apple is the nation’s largest corporate taxpayer. Might want to stay away from that one—the other corporate taxpayers are not exactly what you want to aspire to.
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After a University of Massachusetts student found significant errors in a study beloved by budget cutters world over by Harvard economists Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart, Stephen Colbert does what he does best -- leaves them in the dust.
Talk amongst yourselves