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  • The truth about where 11 tech breakthroughs really came from


    It's like the famous quote mistakenly attributed to Pablo Picasso: Good artists copy; great artists steal.

    There's something to be said for being the first one to the market.

    But the history of tech is riddled with cases where a company just straight up takes an old idea, perfects it, and ends up as a runaway success. 

    (Spoilers: Apple shows up a lot.)

    SEE ALSO: 13 times companies killed products too soon and broke our hearts

    By the early '70s, computer processors had finally gotten cheap enough that people could actually afford them — but you still pretty much had to build your own computer. It was really a thing for hobbyists.

    It was a big deal when Apple introduced the Apple II in 1977. Apple did all the hard work of building and integrating the parts for you, so all you had to do was turn it on. It was the direct ancestor of the modern PC.

    In 2001, Windows PC manufacturers were making touch-screen Tablet PCs based on a Microsoft specification. Despite a lot of hype, they never caught on — they were too expensive, required a stylus instead of letting you use your fingers, and there wasn't enough software.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider
  • Boston Dynamics employees were frustrated with Google's plan for a household robot (GOOGL)

    When Boston Dynamics posted a video of its humanoid robot, Atlas, walking in the snow and recovering from getting kicked, Google was not happy.

    Boston Dynamics atlas

    As one former employee told Tech Insider, it "soured the soup" of a relationship that was already heading south.

    Bloomberg first reported the issues surrounding the video when it obtained an email posted on an internal Google forum. 

    "There’s excitement from the tech press, but we’re also starting to see some negative threads about it being terrifying, ready to take humans’ jobs,” Courtney Hohne, a director of communications at Google and the spokeswoman for Google X, wrote in that email.

    Hohne asked her colleagues at Google to “distance X from this video,” writing, “we don’t want to trigger a whole separate media cycle about where BD really is at Google."

    That last point Hohne makes is key: where Boston Dynamics fits into Google's vision has been an issue for some time. It's actually why Google is selling off Boston Dynamics.

    And sources Tech Insider spoke with say Google is closing in on a buyer. 

    We spoke to a few former Boston Dynamics employees about the tensions with Google, who explained the reasons for the split.

    Google declined to comment for this story and Toyota did not respond to a request for comment. 

    Google's initial vision

    Wildcat Boston DynamicsTo understand the tensions between Google and Boston Dynamics, it's important to see how the visions of each company differed.

    Marc Raibert founded Boston Dynamics in 1992. It was born out of MIT's Leg Lab, a lab that builds and studies legged robots that Raibert founded in 1986.

    It's pretty easy to see the connection with the MIT Leg Lab considering Boston Dynamics' robots, often showed off in YouTube videos, were all advanced, bipedal robots boasting skills in mobility. In addition to the most recent Atlas video, there was Spot, a four-legged robot dog designed to work with the marines. And Cheetah robot, another four-legged bot that's a bit faster than Usain Bolt.

    As Boston Dynamics wrote in the About section of its YouTube page: "Our mission is to build the most advanced robots on Earth, with remarkable mobility, agility, dexterity and speed."

    Google acquired Boston Dynamics in 2013 for an undisclosed amount, in addition to eight other robotics companies. Andy Rubin, the co-founder of Android, was set to oversee the nine robotics companies as part of a new robotics division called Replicant.

    andy rubin

    Rubin was always tight-lipped on how Google planned to use the robotics companies, but he told the New York Times in 2013 that he did not expect initial product development to go on for years.

    That's a similar sentiment echoed by a few former Boston Dynamics employees. 

    "The impression I got was Rubin’s robotic companies were sort of allowed to get some leash," one such person told Tech Insider.

    A few former employees told TI that Rubin was willing to let Boston Dynamics, as well as the other acquired robotics companies, continue with their research as planned. The idea was to see what kind of ideas and innovations the robotics companies came up with, and let that guide Google's eventual robotics vision.

    "We were just making the robot we all thought we should make for technology purposes and for pushing the envelope," the former employee said. 

    "Certainly during the Andy Rubin administration and a little while after that, yes, they just proceeded. They took all the knowledge and experience they had building other projects for other people, and took the best lessons learned and iterated it in a new generation of robots optimized for size and sound."

    But in October 2014, less than a year after Google formed Replicant, Rubin left the company. That's where troubles started mounting.

    The push for a robot in your home

    Boston Dynamics atlas robot

    A little while after Rubin left, there was a leadership vacuum with no one to lead the disparate robotics groups.

    There was still James Kuffner, the co-founder of Replicant, who left Google in January, and Jonathan Rosenberg, who served as an adviser. But there was no one with the same research and robotics background as Rubin.

    Additionally, many employees had signed on to work with Rubin because of his vision and felt disappointed by his departure, some former employees told Tech Insider.

    In 2015, Google attempted to take control of the robotics groups to learn what they were working on and how it could be translated into a consumer product, the former employees said.

    "That’s when we first started seeing Google...actually trying to have leadership structure over all those robotic groups," one former employee said. "Where they’re saying, 'Okay, what do you do? Are you mobility, are you vision?' .... and grouping them and directing them toward a commercial product space."

    It's still unclear what exactly Google wanted in terms of a consumer product. One former employee said Google wanted an easy-to-use robot that could help with basic tasks around the house. One idea pitched was that it would roam around on wheels, which could arguably be seen as more consumer friendly than a complex, legged robot.

    Boston Dynamics, given that it was born out of the MIT Leg Lab, was rubbed that wrong way by that concept.

    A different former employee told Tech Insider that Google wanted a robot that could help around the house or in the office. It's for that reason Boston Dynamics was asked to switch to electronics over hydraulics.

    "Basically, a battery-operated robot, even if its battery is operating a hydraulic pump, it’s much quieter than a robot running on an outdoor motor and is really loud," the person said. "You want it quiet if it’s going to be around people all day."

    That same former employee said a factory robot wasn't out of the question, which is why you see Atlas stacking boxes in the video that "soured the soup."

    'Us and them': Tensions mounting


    Boston Dynamics began resisting the push to build specifically for a consumer product, a former employee said.

    "I felt like the response in the Boston office was to put a higher wall up and protect their entity, rather than provide leadership out in California," the person said.

    That was made all the easier considering the physical distance between Boston-based Boston Dynamics and Google in Mountain Valley, California, a different employee noted.

    Boston Dynamics continued to pursue their own research rather than go in the direction Google wanted, the former employees said.

    "At the end of day what I saw was a sense of us and them instead of a we — we weren’t part of Google, we were sort of a separate thing," the person said.

    Bloomberg was able to obtain the minutes to a Nov. 11 meeting that highlights this exact issue.

    "As a startup of our size cannot spend 30-plus percent of our resources on things that take ten years," Rosenberg said, adding that "there’s some time frame that we need to be generating an amount of revenue that covers expenses and (that) needs to be a few years."

    Raibert pushed back, according to the minutes, stating the best way to get to an eventual consumer product is to let Boston Dynamics continue the type of work they've been doing. 

    "I firmly believe the only way to get to a product is through the work we are doing in Boston. (I) don’t think we are the pie in the sky guys as much as everyone thinks we are," the minutes show.

    It's for that reason the video of Atlas "soured the soup" with Google. As the internal Google email obtained from Bloomerg said, it raised questions of "where BD really is at Google."

    What's next: Toyota

    Marc Raibert

    Google is in talks with the Toyota Research Institute to sell its robotics division Boston Dynamics, a source familiar with the matter told Tech Insider.

    A price for the deal has not yet been disclosed.

    Gill Pratt, CEO of the Toyota Research Institute, worked with Marc Raibert, founder and CEO of Boston Dynamics, at MIT's leg lab — a lab that builds and studies legged robots that Raibert founded in 1986. Pratt took over the lab in 1992 after Raibert left the university to build Boston Dynamics.

    Raibert still runs Boston Dynamics under Google.

    James Kuffner, the co-founder of Google's robotics division, left the company in January to join the the Toyota Research Institute.

    Joseph Bondaryk, the operation manager for Boston Dynamics under Google, also joined the Toyota Research Institute in January, according to LinkedIn.

    Other notable moves include Philipp Michel, who worked as a senior roboticist for Google's robotics division before moving to the Toyota Research Institute in February, a LinkedIn search found. And Adam Geboff, senior systems and hardware engineer for Replicant, joined the Institute in April, according to LinkedIn.

    Toyota is showing increasing interest in the tech deals space. It's in talks to make a major investment in Uber. 

    While it's unclear exactly what Toyota might have planned for the robotics company, a former Boston Dynamics employee referred to the deal as a "friendly buyout." 

    "It's a more friendly buyout when you have interpersonal connections there already," the person said.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This is Google’s answer to the Amazon Echo

  • A Google exec recommends you ask yourself 2 questions before you take on a new job

    Google Glass Ivy Ross

    Before she joined Google in 2014 to work as head of the company's secretive wearables division, Ivy Ross worked at companies as varied as the toy giant Mattel and the clothing conglomerate Gap Inc.

    And before that, Ross was a jewelry designer whose work was placed in the permanent collections of some of the world's foremost museums.

    It was her unorthodox path, though, that has taught her fundamental truths about setting your career path, she told new graduates in a commencement address at the Fashion Institute of Technology on Thursday. We spoke with her about her speech's main points after she gave it.

    Ross explained that her résumé may look eclectic, but the thread running through it is that each job she took allowed her to be true to her identity as a creator and to simultaneously offer and extract value.

    Before taking a new job, she asked herself two questions: "What am I going to learn?" and "Are they going to use me for what I do best?"

    These two questions allow anyone to avoid what Ross considers to be the traps of five-year plans, which she believes are especially troublesome for 20-somethings beginning their careers.

    After she achieved an unexpected level of success with her jewelry in her 20s, she realized that the joy that comes with your ego's satisfaction is fleeting and that "there isn't an end game," she said. "It's about the journey, and once you understand that, then it's about creating that journey."

    Five years ago, Ross said, she never could have predicted that she would be heading up the secret Project Aura at Google, but her two questions have allowed her to be both flexible and true to herself.

    "I think the ideal career path idea will not get you to the right place," she said. "The idea of tapping into who you are, the essence, will."

    SEE ALSO: Google exec shares her best career advice for 20-somethings

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  • France is going after Google and McDonald's

    mcdonalds french fries

    France will "go all the way" to ensure that multinationals operating on its soil pay their taxes and more cases could follow after Google and McDonald's were targeted by tax raids, Finance Minister Michel Sapin said.

    Sapin, speaking in an interview with Reuters and three European newspapers, ruled out negotiating any deal with Google on back taxes, as Britain did in January.

    Dozens of French police raided Google's Paris headquarters on Tuesday, escalating an investigation on suspicions of tax evasion. Investigators searched McDonald's French headquarters on May 18 in another tax probe.

    "We'll go all the way. There could be other cases," Sapin said.

    Raids this month by police and justice investigators build on the work started by tax authorities three or four years ago, when they transferred tax data to judicial authorities that look into any possible criminal angle, Sapin said.

    Google, McDonald's and other multinational firms such as Starbucks are under increasing pressure in Europe from public opinion and governments angry at the way businesses exploit their presence around the world to minimize the tax they pay.

    Google says it is fully complying with French law and McDonald's declined to comment on the search, referring back to past comments that it is proud to be one of the biggest tax payers in France.

    Sapin said he could not discuss what sums were at stake because of the confidentiality of tax matters.

    A source in his ministry had said in February that French tax authorities were seeking some 1.6 billion euros ($1.78 billion) in back taxes from Google.

    No deal

    Asked if tax authorities could strike a deal with the tech giant, he said: "We don't do deals like Britain. We apply the law."

    Google agreed in January to pay 130 million pounds ($190 million) in back taxes to Britain, prompting criticism from opposition lawmakers and campaigners that the sum was too low.

    "There won't be negotiations," Sapin said, adding that there was always the possibility of some marginal adjustments "but that's not the logic we're in."

    Google, now part of Alphabet Inc, pays little tax in most European countries because it reports almost all sales in Ireland. This is possible thanks to a loophole in international tax law but it hinges on staff in Dublin concluding all sales contracts.

    This week's police raid is part of a separate judicial investigation into aggravated tax fraud and the organized laundering of the proceeds of tax fraud.

    Should it be found guilty of that, Google faces either up to 10 million euros ($11 million) in fines or a fine of half of the value of the laundered amount involved.

    A preliminary inquiry into McDonald's was opened early this year after former investigating magistrate and politician Eva Joly filed a lawsuit in December on behalf of an employee committee, a judicial source said.

    French business magazine L'Expansion reported last month that authorities had sent McDonald's France a 300 million euro bill for unpaid taxes on profits believed to have been funneled through Luxembourg and Switzerland.

    It said tax officials had accused the giant U.S. burger chain of using a Luxembourg-based entity, McD Europe Franchising, to shift profits to lower-tax jurisdictions by billing the French division excessively for use of the company brand and other services.

    The judicial source confirmed the investigation was looking into this.

    The government said this week that it had raked in 3.3 billion euros in back taxes and penalties from just five multinationals in 2015.

    "Nothing prevents big groups from coming to us and declaring their taxes," Sapin said.

    (Reporting by Ingrid Melander; Editing by Tom Heneghan)

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  • Everything wrong with Europe’s tech scene, according to the ex-CEO of Google

    eric schmidt google alphabet executive chairman ceo

    Eric Schmidt has a problem with Europe's universities. And its regulators. And its tax policies.

    The former Google CEO, who now serves as the executive chairman of Google parent company Alphabet, appeared at the Startup Fest Europe conference in the Netherlands on May 24, discussing everything from artificial intelligence to Google's new chat app, Allo — as well as Europe's regulatory environment.

    Google is currently the subject of antitrust investigations by the European Commission over alleged anticompetitive practices relating to Search and Android, and could face billions in fines.

    Asked by CNBC interviewer Julia Chatterley about the problems facing Google-linked venture-capital firm GV, Schmidt said there are "lots of issues in the European Union that have to get addressed" — and went on to list what he perceives to be the key problems holding back the continent's tech scene, from education to legislation.

    "Let's start with the universities in Europe. We hire incredibly smart people that come out of the European universities. Universities themselves are underfunded relative to the American universities, by a lot."

    Schmidt, who served as CEO of Google from 2001 to 2011, also has an issue with European red tape. "There a zillion laws that still make it difficult to be an entrepreneur, right. It's still much harder to be an entrepreneur in Europe than it is in the US — both in a regulatory [sense], tax policies, the amount of time it takes to create a firm, and so forth and so on."

    He added: "What happens when I meet with governments is they all say 'yes,' and they listen very politely. They're always very nice. Europeans are always very polite. And then they don't do anything about it."

    European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager Google Antitrust

    Schmidt is calling for Europe to encourage a more risk-taking business culture, with less interference from regulators.

    "There is a model for entrepreneurship. It requires risk, capital, serious investments in the universities, and then sort of tolerating the crazy ideas of the young people coming out of it, giving them some seed funding, letting them do it, and getting out of their way.

    "This model works. It's created this extraordinary wealth in America. It is repeatable in Europe, without question."

    Of course, there is significant bad blood between Google and Europe. Regulators are concerned about the search and mobile giant's perceived dominance on the continent. Google has a whopping 90% of the desktop-search market, and its Android mobile operating system is behind 75% of smartphone sales in the top five European markets.

    The European Commission has accused Google of breaking EU law by abusing its dominant position with Android (which Google disputes), and it may face a record $3 billion antitrust fine for its behaviour on search.

    Little wonder that Schmidt wants Europe to go easy on tech companies.

    Here's a transcript of Eric Schmidt's thoughts on the European tech scene and the regulatory environment. You can watch his entire interview at Startup Fest Europe below.

    Chatterley: What are we getting wrong?

    Schmidt: Well it just takes time. There's lots of issues in Europe that have to get addressed.

    Chatterley: Like what?

    Schmidt: Let's start with the universities in Europe. We hire incredibly smart people that come out of the European universities. Universities themselves are underfunded relative to the American universities, by a lot.

    There are a zillion laws that still make it difficult to be an entrepreneur, right. It's still much harder to be an entrepreneur in Europe than it is in the US — both in a regulatory [sense], tax policies, the amount of time it takes to create a firm, and so forth and so on."

    What happens when I meet with governments is they all say 'yes,' and they listen very politely. They're always very nice. Europeans are always very polite. And then they don't do anything about it.

    So if you want to do something — I'm serious, right — there is a model for entrepreneurship. It requires risk, capital, serious investments in the universities, and then sort of tolerating the crazy ideas of the young people coming out of it, giving them some seed funding, letting them do it, and getting out of their way.

    This model works. It's created this extraordinary wealth in America. It is repeatable in Europe, without question.

    Chatterley: You're basically saying we're all talk and no action.

    Schmidt: Well those are your words ... the fact of the matter is we hire thousands and thousands of Europeans because they don't have startups they would go to. And these are phenomenal engineers working for Google in Europe. I think Europe could benefit from having more, more, more of this.

    Now we've seen a big change in the last few years, but it's taking too long. It's time to accelerate this.

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    NOW WATCH: This is Google’s answer to the Amazon Echo

  • How to land an internship at Google, from someone who did

    BI Headshot.JPG

    For most people, landing an internship at Google seems unattainable.

    I mean, who actually gets to work at Google? That one genius kid from high school that you never talked to … but perhaps should have befriended, right?

    It's unfortunate, because such assumptions deter many people from applying, since they feel as though they don't stand a chance.

    The summer before my senior year in college, I received an offer to intern at Google. When I applied, I thought I had no chance, since I wasn't an Ivy Leaguer nor did I have a perfect 4.0 GPA. But lo and behold, I got it.

    According to the recruiters, landing an internship at Google is harder than getting into Stanford or Harvard. The year I applied, they accepted about 2% of their applicants (1,600 people applied). I'm no genius, so how did I stand out from the crowd?

    1. Put interesting stuff on your resume

    Here are a few things I had on mine:

    You may be thinking that you don't have anything cool like that to put on your resume. On the contrary, you might. Talk about your hobbies and interests. Perhaps you've been an avid rock collector since age five. Maybe you have every single Beanie Baby ever released. That's interesting.

    They want to know a little bit about you, and what you can bring to Google. This is your time to shine, and share some of the quirkier aspects of your personality that other, more traditional companies may not appreciate.

    2. Prepare (as much as you can) for the phone interview

    I had two phone screens, a preliminary one and one with a more seasoned Googler. To my surprise the interview was nowhere near as scary as I thought it would be. The recruiter asked me questions about myself, and of course what I knew about the advertising product. They also asked me to discuss some of my favorite websites/blogs.

    Here are a few questions they asked me and other Google interns in the past:

    • What would you do with 100 million dollars?
    • What's the next big thing?
    • Tell us about a non-Google product that you like. How would you improve it? In what ways would you re-market it? What strategies would you use?
    • How would you explain AdSense to my grandmother?
    • Tell us something about yourself that is NOT on your resume

    3. Googliness: You either have it or you don't

    The on-site interview was the last step in the process. The purpose was to check for "Googliness." Essentially, they are checking out your personality to see if you play well with others and uphold the mantra of Sergey Brin and Larry Page (the founders), which is "Don't Be Evil."

    Two final tips

    Clean up your social media:

    This one is self explanatory. However, it is surprising that people still think that in this day and age companies don't check your social media. I heard it straight from the horse's mouth (i.e., a recruiter from Google).

    They mentioned during our orientation that they looked up all of us on Facebook. Google is one of most competitive companies, so they would obviously screen their candidates thoroughly.

    Leverage your network:

    Google is big on referrals. Their way of thinking is, since you're amazing, you must know other amazing people. Do you know anyone that already works there? Do you have a friend that knows someone that works there? Any connection, even if it's a third-party connection, is better than none.

    SEE ALSO: Google exec shares her best career advice for 20-somethings

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  • The US smart home market has been struggling — here's how and why the market will take off

    Smart Home Adoption Curve

    The US smart home market has yet to take off. Quirky's recent announcement that it was filing chapter 11 bankruptcy — and selling off its smart home business, Wink — highlights this well.

    At its current state, we believe the smart home market is stuck in the 'chasm' of the technology adoption curve, in which it is struggling to surpass the early-adopter phase and move to the mass-market phase of adoption.

    There are many barriers preventing mass-market smart home adoption: high device prices, limited consumer demand and long device replacement cycles. However, the largest barrier is the technological fragmentation of the smart home ecosystem, in which consumers need multiple networking devices, apps and more to build and run their smart home.

    In a new report from BI Intelligence, we analyze current US consumer demand for the smart home and barriers to widespread adoption. We also analyze and determine areas of growth, and ways to overcome barriers.

    Here are some key takeaways from the report: 

    • Smart home devices are becoming more prevalent throughout the US. We define a smart home device as any stand-alone object found in the home that is connected to the internet, can be either monitored or controlled from a remote location, and has a noncomputing primary function. Multiple smart home devices within a single home form the basis of a smart home ecosystem.
    • Currently, the US smart home market as a whole is in the "chasm" of the tech adoption curve. The chasm is the crucial stage between the early-adopter phase and the mass-market phase, in which manufacturers need to prove a need for their devices.
    • High prices, coupled with limited consumer demand and long device replacement cycles, are three of the four top barriers preventing the smart home market from moving from the early-adopter stage to the mass-market stage. For example, mass-market consumers will likely wait until their device is broken to replace it. Then they will compare a nonconnected and connected product to see if the benefits make up for the price differential.
    • The largest barrier is technological fragmentation within the connected home ecosystem. Currently, there are many networks, standards, and devices being used to connect the smart home, creating interoperability problems and making it confusing for the consumer to set up and control multiple devices. Until interoperability is solved, consumers will have difficulty choosing smart home devices and systems. 
    • "Closed ecosystems" are the short-term solution to technological fragmentation. Closed ecosystems are composed of devices that are compatible with each other and which can be controlled through a single point. 

    In full, the report:

    • Analyzes the demand of US consumers, based off of survey results
    • Forecasts out smart home device growth until 2020
    • Determines the current leaders in the market
    • Explains how the connected home ecosystem works
    • Examines how Apple and Google will play a major role in the development of the smart home
    • Some of the companies mentioned in this report include Apple, Google, Nest, August, ADT, Comcast, AT&T, Time Warner Cable, Lowe's, and Honeywell.

    Interested in getting the full report? Here are two ways to access it:

    1. Subscribe to an All-Access pass to BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report and over 100 other expertly researched reports. As an added bonus, you'll also gain access to all future reports and daily newsletters to ensure you stay ahead of the curve and benefit personally and professionally.» Learn More Now
    2. Purchase & download the full report from our research store. » Purchase & Download Now

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  • Google is fixing one of the most frustrating features of its Chrome browser (GOOG)


    Google Chrome is fixing a huge pain point for its users.

    In its next big release, Chrome is removing the keyboard shortcut that makes the "backspace" key return to the previous page.

    This "feature" caused problems for many people who would inadvertently lose a whole bunch of information that they had just entered into a form.  

    For example, if you were filling out a survey or other web form and pressed the backspace key when you weren't actually focused in one of the text boxes, Chrome interpreting the backspace as a "back" button would cause you to lose all of the data you had just entered.

    Google engineers write that years of user complaints have finally driven them to get rid of the shortcut. 

    Although some hardcore shortcut fans have complained heartily about this move, Google engineers said that the number of people suffering, plus the relative ease of switching back, make the change worth it.

    "We're definitely aware of the frustration that this causes users who have come to rely on the shortcut," a Google product manager, Tyler Odean, writes. "However for users who *don't* understand the behavior of the shortcut, which is the majority of users, the loss of data is also super frustrating and they are less equipped to understand or prevent their frustrations."

    People who like the shortcut can either switch to using other ones (like alt+left arrow on Windows, command+left arrow on Mac) or install a Chrome extension that makes backspace go back again.

    This fix will officially roll out in late July.

    SEE ALSO: How non-Facebook users can stop Facebook from tracking them as they move around the web

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  • THE TRANSFORMATION OF THE AUTOMOBILE 2016: Forecasts, trends, and analyses on the disruption of the automotive industry

    Estimated Connected Car Shipments

    Over the past year, there has been a significant uptick in the number of connected cars on the road. And as internet integration becomes more commonplace, the automobile as we know it will transform.

    Over the next five to 10 years, this internet integration is expected to change the car ownership model, create a new platform for consumers to access content, lead to fully autonomous vehicles, and revolutionize the auto industry.

    The market position of the car today is similar to where the smartphone was in 2010 — it's just taken off and is ready to explode. 

    In a new report from BI Intelligence, we examine the transformation of the automobile. We examine all areas of the changing automotive market, including the market size for connected cars, automakers benefits and connection strategies, market leaders, consumer demand, and more.

    Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:

    • Over 380 million connected cars will be on the road by 2021. The market has seen a significant increase in automakers plans to connect the majority of the vehicles they sell and as a result, we've increased our 2015 forecast.
    • Automakers are connecting the vehicles they sell because the connection offers clear business opportunities.
    • Consumers are adopting the connected car faster than expected. We identify the 3 factors that causing the increase in demand.
    • Tech companies will play a major role in the future of the automotive market. The big question is whether tech companies will eventually manufacture cars?
    • Fully autonomous cars are only a few years away. Technological, regulatory, and consumer adoption hurdles still remain, but there have been many strides towards a car that can drive itself from point A to point B with little to no human interaction.

    In full the report:

    • Forecasts connected car shipments
    • Identifies automakers strategy for connection
    • Analyzes consumer interest in the connected car
    • Examines Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
    • Discusses the potential changing car ownership model
    • Describes the evolution of the self-driving car
    • Identifies top connected car and fully autonomous car barriers

    Interested in getting the full report? Here are two ways to access it:

    1. Subscribe to an All-Access pass to BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report and over 100 other expertly researched reports. As an added bonus, you'll also gain access to all future reports and daily newsletters to ensure you stay ahead of the curve and benefit personally and professionally. >> Learn More Now
    2. Purchase & download the full report from our research store. >> Purchase & Download Now

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  • The 14 most innovative schools in America

    e3 civic high

    American education catches a lot of flack for falling behind other countries in global rankings, but test scores aren't everything. The truth is, some of the most cutting-edge learning takes place on US soil.

    We consulted education experts from Google as well as past assessments from InnoveEdu and Noodle to arrive at a comprehensive list of schools that embody innovation in a variety of forms.

    There is the Arizona school where Native American students learn about sustainability and agriculture; the school in Michigan where kids learn about zoology; the New York City school for LGBT youth; and many more.

    Together, the schools demonstrate that equations and vocabulary tests, while essential, aren't the only things that matter in schooling. They're a small piece of the much larger pursuit to mold young minds.

    Star School. Flagstaff, AZ. The school that's off the grid.

    Navajo children make up 99% of the student body at Star School, the first public elementary school in the US to get all of its energy from solar power. 

    Students grow their own food in the school's greenhouses, take culinary classes, and develop solutions for the local problem of unclean drinking water, says Mark Sorensen, co-founder and CEO of STAR School. "We believe that our orientation to service projects in the community and using our community's culture as a rich resource in contextualizing learning are what make us successful."

    Students also learn the 4 Rs, which come from the Navajo culture: Respect, Relationship, Responsibility, and Reasoning. As a result, Sorensen says the school hasn't had a fist fight in over six years and bullying is rare.

    Brightworks School. San Francisco, CA. The school that teaches dangerously.

    Launched by visionary Gever Tulley in 2011, Brightworks takes some of the most dangerous things parents tell their kids not to do and makes an entire curriculum out of them. 

    Kids in grades K to 12 get dirty, play with fire, take apart home appliances, and complete art projects all in the same day.

    "We invite students to be co-authors of their education, embracing and supporting the individual and the unique set of skills and interests that motivate them," Tulley and Justine Macauley, Brightworks' program coordinator, tell Tech Insider in an email. 

    The school is housed in an expansive warehouse filled with art, forts, makeshift theaters — all of which are meant to tap into kids' creative side.

    "The world needs more people who see the hardest challenges as interesting puzzles and have the creative capacity, skills, and tenacity to make change happen," Tulley and Macauley say. 

    e3 Civic High School. San Diego, CA. The school inside a library.

    Tucked inside the New San Diego Central Library in downtown San Diego, the charter high school gives lower-income kids access to research facilities, study abroad opportunities, and project-based instruction — all with nearly unlimited resources for satisfying their curiosities.

    E3 — so named for its mission to engage, educate, and empower — opened three years ago, following a study that found more than half of San Diego's students leave the downtown area to attend high school. City officials saw the exit as a sign the region needed improvement.

    The result is a school that lives on the sixth and seventh floors of the local library and embodies its mission through design. Eis LEED Gold-certified and features movable walls, modular furniture, and a plaza for assemblies and meals. 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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