Chris J Powell

Facebook IPO, Nano robot helicopters and 12 month leases on Smart Phones

Well the day is almost here.  I have been biting my tongue about the Facebook IPO hoping that the hype would just go away but with the anticipated $5 billion IPO impending and a fancy letter to investors from the Grand Poobah himself I could not keep out of the mix anymore.

It is important to note that the company is asking for $5 Billion but nearly every report I have seen points the final tally for the kingdom of Likes and Shares to raise a cool $10 Billion giving it a valuation of $100 Billion.  One may ask why it took this long for Facebook to join the other Web 2.0 sweet hearts on the trading floor and speculation points to the fact that the private trading within Facebook had both maxxed out and was also under increasing scrutiny from the FCC…OK I buy that.

There is some speculation now if Facebook can pull off the richest IPO in history, looking at some figures I dug up the largest Tech IPO was Infineon which raised $5.9 Billion in 2000 (Google only raised $1.9 Billion in 2004) and the top honors overall go to General Motors in 2010 with $23.1 Billion and Nippon Telegraph in 1987 that when you adjust for inflation raised $29.8 Billion.

Nano Quadcopters in a Swarm

One of the latest YouTube Tech wonders is from the brain trust at the University of Pennsylvania’s GRASP Lab.  I have  been a fan of these miniature helicopters for some time but this concept takes it to a new level and with the miniaturization of everything and the potential for automation and future fuel cells there is enormous potential for this technology being used by Police, Military and well even the bad guys to gather, transmit and possibly process real time data and intelligence.

The General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception (GRASP) Laboratory integrates computer science, electrical engineering and mechanical engineering in a vibrant, collaborative environment that fosters interactions between students, research staff and faculty. GRASP has grown into a $10 million research center with impressive technological innovations. Pioneering GRASP researchers are building autonomous vehicles and robots, developing self-configuring humanoids, and making robot swarms a reality. Our doctoral students are trained in theory and practice and mentored to become leaders in research and education. The graduates of the interdisciplinary Master’s in Robotics program are uniquely equipped to face research and development challenges of the fast-growing robotics industry.We invite you to visit the GRASP lab to experience  the future of robotics research and education.

12 Month leases on SmartPhones

The pace at which SmartPhones become outdated or in the case of some people like me where a self induced bricking occurs in month 4 of a 36 month contract a new option appears to be just around the corner.  TMNG Global is currently pitching the concept of a 12 month lease to major US Carriers that would allow for users to update their phones every year for a monthly service fee and the provision of an insurance policy.

I would be all over this option as it has been a pain trying to justify to myself the upfront cost of $650 for a new phone after I messed up my Galaxy S II a couple of months ago.

I don’t know if I would be willing to pay the $20-30 per month that they are peddling but it is still better than being out of pocket and I could grab one of those Quad Core wonders that are coming out soon…hey Telus…you listening…new source of revenue…wink wink, nudge nudge.  This system is already in place over in the UK with O2 leasing iPhone 4S units for $86 per month on a 1 year term so yeah…geeks we will pay for the latest tech…just not at the retarded prices that are considered full retail.

On a side note…today is the day that here in North America we put our faith in an early spring into the hands of a couple famous Ground Hogs.  Giving some props to the prestidigitation of these rodents check out their updates later this morning at or if you have time to get there head off to the Wiarton Willie Festival.  South of the border there is Punxsutawney Phil who was forever immortalized in the 1993 Bill Murray movie Ground Hog Day.

Unfortunately current weather reports are putting us all at risk of 6 more weeks of winter as both Phil and Willie are likely to cast a shadow and head back in to hibernate some more…but with the winter we have had so far…I won’t really complain too much.


Chris J Powell

2 thoughts on “Facebook IPO, Nano robot helicopters and 12 month leases on Smart Phones

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