Kyle Tobin

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On November 17, 2017, Kyle Tobin commented on Sunrun: Confronting Solar Panel Import Tariffs :

Mike, this is a really fascinating article. You did a great job explaining the problems facing each player (manufacturer, installation/service, customer) and their corresponding solutions. I think I am most curious to see how foreign (and domestic) manufacturers react. It will certainly take time to move production to the US, but it appears that our solar industry (volatile as it may be) is here to stay. Depending on the January decisions, there could be some real upside to “made in America” PV cells.

George, thank you for your article. Reverse logistics is a fascinating business proposition in our day of increasing ecommerce. I think you allude to this, but I wonder what is to keep retailers from developing their own reverse logistics processes. As it stands, it sounds like Optoro is offering a service that processes return and redistributes via their own channels, thereby alleviating any burden to the retailer. It would be ironic for Optoro, who positions itself on cutting out the middleman, to eventually be cut out as retailers adapt OptiTurn like technology and redistribute through their own retail channels. I suppose this is tantamount to retailer’s current return process, just in a smarter way.

On November 17, 2017, Kyle Tobin commented on Uber: Paving the Way for Self-driving Trucks :

Alejandro, I really enjoyed your article. Level 4 autonomy sounds similar to the autopilot function of an aircraft. In this regard, I wonder if we will first see human-assisted vehicles much like airplanes are operated today. As featured in your video, the driver only operates the truck outside the level 4 environment and spends the rest of the time monitoring, resting, etc. This approach could prompt gradual changes in legislation that would eventually permit level 5 autonomy. It would also provide interim revenue to support this developing technology. I’m excited to see what the future holds!

On November 17, 2017, Kyle Tobin commented on Life-Saving Drones: Zipline in East Africa :

Joe, I really enjoyed your article. The speed and accessibility of drones is certainly a compelling argument for delivering critical medical supplies, particularly in underdeveloped regions. I found you last point quite intriguing. Apart from whatever “altruistic” motives that central governments have, I too share the concern that these programs might distract from investing in basic infrastructure, which unarguably has more upside in the future. Delivering medical supplies is good, but connecting villages to cities with hospitals, physicians, and other healthcare services is great.

On November 15, 2017, Kyle Tobin commented on Digitalization In the Upstream Oil and Gas Industry :

Hi Khush, thank you for your article. I wonder if Schlumberger’s integrated drill technology is specific to onshore drilling or if it can be applied to offshore as well. My understanding is that the North American offshore market has taken the biggest hit. It stands to reason that this market has the most to gain from cost reductions. Thus it appears that digitalization is a critical path toward profitability, particularly for the large, deepwater Gulf of Mexico rigs. Thanks again for your article.

On November 15, 2017, Kyle Tobin commented on Miami’s (climate change) Models :

Hi Sharat, I enjoyed your article. Miami is certainly near the top of the list of cities being impacted by climate change. There’s so much to be said about potential solutions, but rarely any action. Another consequence of climate change that is gaining attention is “climate gentrification.” There is growing concern about rising sea levels placing a premium on higher elevation properties. This is particularly relevant in Miami, where low-income residents are beginning to be priced out of their inland neighborhoods. You can read reports of developers pressuring residents to move. These are people who are already struggling to make ends meet, some who historically were pushed out of coastal properties to make room for rising real estate. A prime example of this is in Little Haiti where low-income, predominately minority peoples, are being displaced by rising property values. To me there appears to be a disproportionate amount of information concerning the detrimental impacts of climate change and very little information about solutions and action.