Education vs. Training: Corporate America’s role



What do you really need to know? Would a sixth-grade education give you enough basic skills to enable you to use online tools to learn a trade or become a service worker or a knowledge worker? Would you need eighth-grade skills? Tenth-grade? Perhaps a four-year college degree?

How much education do you need to learn to create and configure a new Aurora Serverless DB cluster on AWS? One of our engineers just taught a high-school intern how to do it in a few hours. This particular intern is about 150 hours of training away from being in a position to earn about $90k annually. With what he has learned in the past 50 hours of training, this young man could earn enough during the rest of the summer to pay for his first year of college – which he may not actually need.

But if he doesn’t need to go to college, or even finish high-school, what kind of education does he need? We need to shift the conversation from education to training – and that is precisely what corporate America is starting to do.

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Amazon wants to sell “surveillance as a service”


In case Amazon’s surveillance capabilities weren’t extensive enough with its Echo, Ring, and Key products, not to mention all the data Amazon routinely collects on its customers, the company recently received a US patent to provide “surveillance as a service.”

The patent is for an “unmanned aerial vehicle”—the technical term for a drone—that “may perform a surveillance action at a property of an authorized party” and could “image the property to generate surveillance images.” Amazon suggests in its patent, filed June 12, 2015, and granted June 4 of this year, that drone-based surveillance would be superior to traditional video-camera installations that have limited range, are liable to miss things, and can be manipulated or damaged by an intruder.

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Amazon is leasing more planes so it can deliver packages on its own

(CNN)Amazon’s fleet of cargo jets is getting larger, as it expands plans to deliver more of its packages itself.

The online retailer announced it will lease an additional 15 cargo planes from GE Capital Aviation Services. The deal was announced Tuesday at the Paris Air Show.

Amazon has been stepping up efforts to handle more packages fully on its own. The company is buying vans so more deliveries to customers’ doors can be made by independent contractors rather than providers such as the US Postal Service, United Parcel Service (UPS) and FedEx (FDX). Earlier this month FedEx announced it wouldn’t renew its US contract with Amazon to transport packages on FedEx Express.

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Watch Amazon’s all-new delivery drone zipping through the sky

Amazon has taken the wraps off the latest iteration of its Prime Air delivery drone that it says could be delivering online orders to customers’ doors “in the coming months.”

Considering the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) cautious approach to commercial drone deliveries, it’s a bold claim, but more on that later.

First, the drone. Amazon unveiled its new-look flying machine at its re:MARS Conference (Machine learning, Automation, Robotics, and Space) event in Las Vegas on Wednesday, June 5.

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Mary Meeker’s most important trends on the internet

Mary Meeker, Code 2019/Recode

It’s the holiday season for data nerds: That is, Mary Meeker is delivering her annual Internet Trends Report — the most highly anticipated slide deck in Silicon Valley — again at Code Conference 2019.

The general partner at venture capital firm Bond Capital delivered a rapid-fire 333-page slideshow that looked back at every important internet trend in the last year and looked forward about what these trends tell us to expect in the year ahead. The “Queen of the Internet” and former Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers partner touched on everything from accelerating internet ad spend in the US to the growth of digital delivery services in Latin America.

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Amazon unveils a chopper-plane mashup to deliver packages


Amazon unveiled its newest drone design for its Prime Air fleet on Wednesday. (Jordan Stead / AFP) Inc. has unveiled a revolutionary new drone — part helicopter and part science-fiction aircraft — that the company expects to use for test deliveries of toothpaste and other household goods starting within months.

The new device takes off vertically, then tilts to fly horizontally like a plane. It also features artificial intelligence, using a suite of sensors the company said will allow it to fly robotically without threatening traditional aircraft or people on the ground.

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Amazon – Redefining the 80:20 rule



The 80:20 rule is oft bandied around in the retail world and Amazon, not content with disrupting numerous retail industries and the very way we shop have even taken an established business saying and turned it on its head.

Amazon uses the 80:20 rule to demonstrate their approach to product decision making – they base selections 80% on data and 20% on experience and gut feel, whereas traditionally decisions in retail are entirely the other way around, with 20% being based on data and 80% on gut feel.

No-one can argue that the 80:20 model isn’t working well for Amazon as the company announced a near doubling of their profits for the first quarter of 2019 as it continues its expansion into new categories by using the data they generate from selling 3d party products.

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Amazon’s new fulfillment center machines pack boxes up to 5x faster than humans

From drone deliveries to checkout-free brick-and-mortar stores, Amazon has made no secret of its desire to automate as many parts of the retail experience as possible. While Amazon employs thousands of people in its fulfillment centers, it may be because it hasn’t yet figured out a way to automate their role. Until now, that is. Things could be about to get even more dicey for human workers as Amazon is reportedly rolling out machines capable of boxing up customer orders.

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Walmart offers free one-day delivery in attempt to catch up with Amazon

27F3C92A-6391-43AB-AC5F-C31CA6C69CD9Available across 75 percent of the country by year end

Walmart will offer free one-day delivery on up to 220,000 items on its online store with orders over $35. Walmart is currently offering the new service in Phoenix and Las Vegas, and will come to Southern California in the coming days. The retailer expects the service to be available to 75 percent of the US by the end of 2019, including 40 of the 50 biggest metropolitan areas.

The retailer’s announcement comes hot on the heels of Amazon’s decision to speed up its free delivery option for Prime members from two-day to one-day delivery. As of last week, Amazon’s new service is already available for select Prime items. While Walmart requires you to spend a minimum of $35 in order to quality for free delivery, Amazon has no minimum spend. Instead, Amazon requires you to pay a $119 annual fee for Prime.

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Jeff Bezos unveils a giant lunar lander that he says is ‘going to the moon’ and will help Blue Origin populate space


Jeff Bezos shows off Blue Origin’s lunar lander concept, called Blue Moon, in Washington, DC, on May 9, 2019.
Dave Mosher/Business Insider

Jeff Bezos, the billionaire founder of Amazon, unveiled on Thursday a giant lunar lander concept by his spaceflight company, Blue Origin.

Called “Blue Moon,” the vehicle is designed to deliver a variety of types of payloads to the moon’s surface — including people at some point.

NASA said in April that it wants to fund a large, private lunar lander to get its astronauts to and from the moon, ideally as soon as 2024.

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Amazon’s system for tracking its warehouse workers can automatically fire them


A world where people are monitored and supervised by machines isn’t confined to the realms of sci-fi. It’s here now.

Tough conditions: There have been many reports over recent years about unpleasant conditions workers face at Amazon warehouses. Employees are under pressure to pack hundreds of boxes per hour, and face being fired if they aren’t fast enough.

What’s new: Documents obtained by The Verge show that it’s far more common for people to be fired due to lack of productivity than outsiders realize. Roughly 300 people were fired at a single facility between August 2017 and September 2018 for that reason. And crucially, the documents show that much of the firing process is automated.

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Google just beat Amazon to launching one of the first drone delivery services


A Wing delivery drone

Google just beat Amazon to launching one of the first drone delivery services

  • The Alphabet startup Wing has secured approval for one of the world’s first drone delivery services.
  • The service is set to officially launch in Canberra, Australia, after securing approval from Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority following a successful trial.
  • The service will aim to use drones to deliver items including coffee and ice cream to homes in the Canberra area within minutes of their being ordered through an app.
  • It means Alphabet has beaten Amazon to the punch after Jeff Bezos failed to deliver on his promise of launching a commercial drone delivery service by 2018.


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