Continuous Charging Cars, NLP, Lingerie, and Whiskey in a Jar

Wireless, continuous charging of Electric Vehicles while driving? Science fiction, or eventual reality? Khurram Afridi and his team of researchers at Cornell University have been developing the tech to do just this.

Over the past seven years, Afridi has been developing tech to wirelessly charge vehicles without them ever having to stop. Theidea is to build the tech right into the highway.

“Highways would have a charging lane, sort of like a high occupancy lane,” Afridi told Business Insider. “If you were running out of battery you would move into the charging lane. It would be able to identify which car went into the lane and it would later send you a bill.”

Afridi’s team is using the tech to recharge autonomous forklifts right now. With the kinks worked out, the tech could be road-ready in a couple of years.

ARTIFCIAL INTELLIGENCE

Market research commissioned by IBM (NYSE: IBM) shows nearly a third of companies are now using artificial intelligence (AI). While adoption was flat over the last year, momentum is shifting as the need for AI accelerates.

“A large majority of those investments continue to be focused on the three capabilities that define AI for business — automating IT and processes, building trust in AI outcomes, and understanding the language of business.” says Rob Thomas, Senior Vice President, IBM Cloud and Data Platform.

Those deploying or exploring AI report the trend is driven by multiple pressures, including the COVID-19 pandemic; and advances in AI are making it more accessible. As advances in technology continue, companies cite a lack of AI skills and increasing data complexity as top challenges.

Of note, natural language processing (NLP) is the frontrunner — almost half the businesses surveyed are using NLP, primarily to improve the customer experience.

BUSINESS & INVESTING

L Brands, Inc. (NYSE: LB) announced plans to separate into two independent, public companies: Bath & Body Works, and Victoria’s Secret.

“…Victoria’s Secret is now well-positioned to operate as a standalone, public company. Further, both Bath & Body Works and Victoria’s Secret are leaders in their respective markets, and, as separate businesses, each will be ideally positioned to benefit from a sharpened focus on pursuing growth strategies best suited to each company’s customer base…” said Sarah Nash, Chair of the Board.

The spin-off is expected to be effected through a pro-rata distribution to L Brands shareholders of common stock of a newly-formed entity holding certain assets and liabilities comprising the Victoria’s Secret business. The spin-off is generally expected to qualify as tax free to L Brands and its shareholders for U.S. federal income tax purposes. The transaction is currently expected to be completed in August 2021, subject to certain customary conditions, including final approval of the L Brands Board and effectiveness of a Form 10 registration statement filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

I’m a big fan of spinoffs. They’re a good way to get 20 percent or more returns per year. But they’re boring as hell. The wait, while well worth it, is excruciating; perhaps you should start your own magazine to fill the void?

STYLE

Whiskey in a jar? How about a $250,000.00 bottle — the Royal Salute to Honor, a rare batch celebrating the jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation. The owner, Mahesh Patel is the founder of Universal Whiskey Experience. He has been collecting whiskey for more than 30 years. His motto is buy two of everything you can afford and always open one.

His story got me thinking about collecting whiskey. I occasionally enjoy a sip of Laphroaig, but otherwise don’t know much about collecting or investing in whiskey. To start with, what’s the deal with whiskey/whisky? Which is which and who is who? Apparently the spelling differs geographically and as a rule the Americans and Irish prefer whiskey while the Scots, Canadians and the rest of the world’s single malt makers prefer whisky.

With this mystery behind me I sought to figure out where to start with a bank roll significantly less than Mr. Patel’s. This led me to Andy Simpson of RareWhisk101.com Andy is a collector and investor who is a consultant and broker to the Scotch whisky industry.

In an Esquire article Andy lays out the best way to get started as a collector: Be on the lookout for new limited-edition releases. Andy concurs with Mahesh and recommends people do what he does, buy two bottles. One to drink and one to hold. He also recommends always going for releases from well-respected, iconic distilleries. He notes vintages from the ’60 and 70’s are incredibly valuable and anything prior to World War II would be tremendously valuable. When it comes to “limited-editions” according to Andy, a quick rule of thumb would be to stick with anything less than 10,000 bottles, but the fewer the better.

While a lot of Andy’s advice relates to whisky as an investment, if heeded as a collector and following the motto of Mahesh Patel, you could wind up with a hobby that pays for itself.

Summing it all up:

  • Be on the lookout for new limited-edition releases
  • On limited-editions, stick with anything less than 10,000 bottles
  • Always go for well-respected, iconic distilleries
  • Grab two. One to drink and one to hold

REFLECTION

The Eagle and the Oyster.

When God created the oyster, he gave it a free house to live in called a shell. He put the oyster at the bottom of the ocean for protection from predators. He gave the oyster easy access to food. The oyster is perfectly taken care of. It just isn’t going to go anywhere. It stays at the bottom of the ocean. But hey, the oyster has free food and free shelter, right!?

God also created something called the Eagle. The Eagle is a whole other species. If the Eagle wants a house, he goes out and builds it. The Eagle wants some food? No problem. Go out there and fly, mile after mile. Fly through sleet, snow, and rain.

Interestingly, the Eagle fails to catch its prey 95% of the time. The Eagle is so big and cumbersome that when it swoops in on its prey, they can most times take off in another direction — causing the Eagle to miss.

Only 5% of the time does an Eagle succeed. And what does success mean for it? Well, the Eagle is the strongest bird in the sky. It’s the only bird that can fly into the thermals of a hurricane just for fun. The Eagle, unlike the oyster, can go wherever the fuck it wants! The Eagle, not the oyster, is the emblem of the United States.

~ John Paul DeJoria

Disclaimer: All information provided is for educational purposes only and does not constitute investment, legal or tax advice, or an offer to buy or sell any security. Tao of Pete has a disclosure policy.

Originally published at https://taoofpete.substack.com.

ToP Magazine: https://bit.ly/taoofpete | Carrozzeria Automobili: https://bit.ly/carrozzeriaautomobili | Twitter: @peteweishaupt

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