Gongol.com Archives: June 2014
Tesla says it won't sue others for using its patents
The company has gotten a lot of praise for the quality of its electric cars, so they probably expect to stay in a premier position for brand perception. By allowing others to use the patents, they're almost certainly trying to instigate new interest in the electric-car market overall (probably a sensible move, given that there's a lot of infrastructure required to make them work, and the only way to get the infrastruture built is to get a critical mass of users on the roads). And, if Tesla's people are really smart, they'll push themselves to behave in a Toyota-like fashion and keep up a mission for continuous improvement, which could render old patents less valuable to the company over time anyway.
Sharper satellite imagery coming soon
DigitalGlobe had to get government approval first. Right away, they'll get to sell resolutions of 40 cm rather than 50 cm, but they're planning to take new pictures down to 31-cm resolution soon.
How to have meetings with more productivity
Limit the attendance, keep the meeting short, and circulate documents instead of convening a meeting (when possible)
Barriers to employment create bored teens who get into trouble
Two middle-school-aged girls burned down a playground at a Des Moines elementary school in March because they were bored. The new playground is almost finished, but the incident should be a reminder that the things we do that make it harder for young people to get jobs (even if we're doing them out of good intentions) can have negative consequences. It's not good for any society to have a bunch of teenagers bumming around with nothing useful to do.
California judge strikes down teacher tenure
Some of the hardest-working people in the country are teachers. So are some of the laziest. We would be wise to find systems and incentive mechanisms to encourage more of the former and less of the latter, since a system that protects the lazy ones implicitly punishes the hard-working ones. Education is far too important to leave in the hands of people who don't care.