Curating the Internet: Business, leadership, and management micro-summaries for October 10, 2019

11 months ago
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UBS launches blockchain product on IBM's We.Trade; Andreessen Horowitz promoted a VC rising star to manage health care investments; OpenLibra launches a permissionless version of Facebook's Libra; The relationship among innovation, openness, and extroversion; and a Steem essay describing a visit to the catacombs of Paris


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  1. Banking Giant UBS Goes Live on IBM's We.Trade Blockchain for Trade Finance - UBS, the Swiss banking giant, began piloting We.Trade with customers earlier this month. The initial product is an offering for a free automatic settlement product in the Czech Republic. Another expected use case is to replace post-dated checks, which a UBS general manager says are still widely used in Greece. The cost to trade on We.Trade runs from $2,000 per month to $175,000 per year, and the platform was built by IBM using the company's open source Hyperledger Fabric blockchain system. We.Trade has plans to bring development in-house.

  2. Andreessen Horowitz just promoted a VC rising star to figure out how software will transform healthcare. Here are the top 3 areas she plans to invest in. - Andreessen Horowitz has promoted Julie Yoo to general partner. She will be focusing her investment portfolio on places where health care is administered and paid for. According to the article, the health care field is currently changing because of two dominant factors: (i) The infrastructure for electronic health records has mostly been deployed; and (ii) the industry is under extreme pressure to control costs. The article suggests that Yoo's investing thesis will be that: "software is eating care delivery.". The types of companies that she'll be investing include those that make health care's electronic systems easier for users, those that improve efficiency, and those that make the real-world aspects of health care easier for patients and practitioners.

  3. OpenLibra Plans to Launch Permissionless Fork of Facebook’s Stablecoin - Wireline CEO, Lucas Geiger, announced OpenLibra at Devcon 5. The project has already released it's first virtual machine, and the project's web site says they intend to, "an alternative to Facebook's Libra, that places emphasis on open governance and economic decentralization." Analysts are divided about whether Facebook's Libra will overcome international resistance and launch successfully, with some predicting that the launch may not happen before 2023.

  4. For Better Ideas, Bring the Right People to the Brainstorm - A new paper by Duke researcher Sharique Hasan and Harvard's Rembrand M. Koning examines the conversations around innovation, and found that all conversations don't inspire innovation in the same way. Some conversations enhance innovation, others impede it, and still others are neutral. In particular, they rated people on a 2-dimensional scale of openness and extroversion, then paired people by random into conversational partnerships and examined the flow of ideas. On average, they found that open people and closed people had roughly the same quality of ideas, although ideas from open people were slightly better. They also found that idea quality was higher after a person was paired into conversation with an extrovert, and lower when paired with an introvert. Interestingly, open innovators generated both the best and the worst ideas, depending upon whether they were paired with extroverts or introverts. The research was done to generate ideas for India's wedding industry, an area that - according to Koning - most participants had some familiarity. Lessons for management are that it may be a good idea to pair open people and extroverts during idea generation, and that they should seek feedback from open customers who are willing to share. Also, introverts may be better at idea generation when working in isolation, or when placed in a social environment that puts them at ease.

  5. STEEM Empire of the Dead: the Catacombs of Paris - In this post @leaky20 talks about his visit to the catacombs of Paris. The construction of underground tunnels are about 131 steps, or 8 stories, below ground, and they were constructed in an abandoned quarry during the late 1700s, to address a public health crisis when the city ran out of cemetery space to hold their dead. The post contains photos and descriptions of the visit. (A beneficiary setting of 10% has been applied to this post for @leaky20.)


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