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On November 20, 2016, KaraB commented on When “Real” Estate Meets “Virtual” World :

Incredibly interesting, thanks for sharing. I especially enjoyed the part about using AI to reduce investment costs. Could Lianjia also implement such technology to specifically target the large segment of house buyers/renters who aren’t able to make time to see as many homes as they would like in their search? This could be a way of differentiating themselves from the likes of emerging online agencies that you mention – thereby reducing travel time for working customers during their search.

On November 20, 2016, KaraB commented on Big data analytics, a powerful force for good or evil? :

This is a really informative post – thanks. I completely agree with Sam’s comment above – to what extent can society allow private companies the power to use analytics to prevent such incidents? Of particular concern is the point about shareholder pressure, and the likelihood that the company will succumb and loosen their ethical standards. Does more need to be done in terms of partnering with government and national security experts, to implement the right checks and balances? Your point about the non-ownership board could be expanded, for example ensuring a good portion of board seats are filled by such experts.

On November 20, 2016, KaraB commented on Bringing Robo-advising to the World, One Bank at a Time :

Really interesting article. The banks’ use of technology is certainly interesting and they’re clearly aware they need to get into this space. I’m a little concerned about the popularity of platforms serving wealth management businesses, and understand why UBS went about its lukewarm partnership with SigFig. While such a tool would be of excellent use for smaller customers in terms of providing market analysis or data, in practice it’s difficult to serve clients (particularly those in the high net worth bracket) without a significant amount of human interaction and relationship building.

On November 20, 2016, KaraB commented on Banking on Digital Technology at BBVA :

Thanks for sharing this article! I agree with what you’ve written. The banking sector definitely needs to grab that window of opportunity before the space becomes overly regulated and crowded out by tech firms.
One concern springs to mind. I wonder about the proliferation of digital banking/fintech alternatives, in terms of their overall accessibility for the elderly population segment. For example, how many elderly people do we actually know of that are familiar with using mobile applications in general, and specifically trusting of their mobile phones to execute banking transactions? While digitizing banking is definitely a great outcome for younger generations, the consumer banking industry should ensure their market remains open to all.

On November 20, 2016, KaraB commented on Data In Schools: Learning From InBloom’s Failures :

Thanks for sharing this. I wasn’t aware of such technological developments occurring in the education sector. Personally I am torn between SubodhChawla and Christie’s comments. While so much of our information is available today and the intention behind the technology seems to be good, it doesn’t sit well that academic information is being shared with a third party. In particular the risks of sharing with such a third party need to be clearly outlined and consequences of a breach of such data made clear to all parties before implementation. I would also be interested to understand how the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation went about selecting InBloom – were there any other similar parties competing for funding, and if so, how did InBloom differentiate itself?

On November 7, 2016, KaraB commented on Only The Resourceful Will Survive :

What an amazing initiative! I would really like to learn more about Kutamani. I also had a look at the website and Rittah’s story. Like Ritaroo, I’d be interested to learn about Rittah’s perception of climate change and how her community believe they can deal with this threat.
Not sure if this is a comparable but here’s an NGO I’ve come across in India, would be great to know your thoughts. It’s an interesting story: an uneducated group of middle-aged Indian ladies under the poverty line are thinking green!

On November 7, 2016, KaraB commented on General Electric – Not so General anymore! :

Really enjoyed reading this, especially about GE’s foray into renewable energy technologies. I wanted to learn more and found this interesting little article on an investment they made into biomass, in Indonesia:
Also an interesting primer on their website about the distributed power transformation:

On November 7, 2016, KaraB commented on SolarCity: Powering the Climate Change Revolution? :

Interesting post, ConcernedCitizen. I wanted to flag the below article that I read some months ago, in agreement with your point about SolarCity coming up against utilities that want to disincentivise customers from going off grid:
The article and video are a must read/view. They outline SolarCity’s quest for residential rooftop solar panel installations, through net metering struvtures. At the time of writing, SolarCity have come up against NV Energy, the state of Nevada’s largest utility. Incidentally, NV Energy’s owner is no other than Berkshire Hathaway, owned by Warren Buffett.

On November 7, 2016, KaraB commented on Banking on change :

Great article, Sophie! There are large initiatives that have taken place at some of the other banks as well, such as Earth Week at Deutsche Bank (see https://www.db.com/cr/en/positions/energy-transition.htm and http://brett-lesage.com/deutsche-bank-earth-week-2011).
In addition to the green bond origination that you mentioned, there are also interesting in-house teams at various banks that work specifically on the financing of renewable energy projects.
While this is good progress and green financing is definitely an up and coming field to be working in, I agree there needs to be more communication around what the banks are doing to reduce their carbon exposures.

On November 7, 2016, KaraB commented on Launch of the Toyota Mirai :

I really enjoyed reading this article, particularly about the Toyota Mirai. I’d be interested to learn about what R&D partnerships Toyota have currently (or is their innovation entirely done in-house?). Could they could be doing more on this front (given the mention of the need for greater infrastructure) and what are their constraints? I’d also like to understand if (and how) they hedge or buffer themselves from exposure to fossil fuel prices, given this in part drives consumer demand for their product.