On Episode 453 of the Waves of Tech, we are kicking off the podcast by sharing some interesting stories from the July 4 holiday weekend. First, central and high desert residents of California were hit with major back-to-back earthquakes and social media played a pivotal role in information, safety, and communication. Over the weekend, we experienced how availability of mobile phone data can cause a headache in terms of management, cost, and convenience. E-scooters deserve more conversation because they create an eyesore and public safety concerns along with a tax on public services in terms of enforcement and oversight. And finally, a group of powerful executives and technology movers are investing heavily in the midwest region of the United States which is often outshadowed and overlooked by the industry.
Earthquakes Hit Our Backyards in California
We live in the Central Valley of California, mostly known for “the big one” to hit at anytime. The big one refers to an earthquake that could lead to catastrophic structural damage and loss of life. Central, southern, and high desert of California were hit with back to back large earthquakes over the holiday weekend. Many took to social media to share the news of damage and safety.
- Dave posted a video of his backyard pool water sloshing around post-earthquake
- Social media applications are designed to reach a larger audience at a quicker pace
- Regardless of severity, it reaches family and friends concerned about well beings
- Some emergency alerts apps worked, some failed, and some went unnoticed
Next Level Phone Data Nightmare
Over the weekend, Steve spent time in sunny and coastal San Diego enjoying the cool weather and the July 4 fireworks spectacular. During his trip, he and his wife had a very unusual data management issue on their shared mobile phone plan. Their phones constantly pinged them identified multiple data overages and hence charging applicable fees.
- Phones had to be diagnosed and settings change to adjust to WiFi only capabilities
- Simple things such as text messages, phone calls, email service were interrupted
- Serves as a reminder to set up restrictions on data usage and notification limits
- Poor data management will cause unnecessary overage charges and inconvenience
Scooter Scooter Scooter Mania
E-scooters have been a talking point on this podcast and within the technology industry for well over a year now. Many cities across the United States are entirely banning the micro-mobility units whereas some are placing heavy restrictions on use and availability. In many cases, as was the scene in San Diego, these companies and e-scooters are being left unchecked.
- Piles upon poiles of e-scooters were spotted in heavily trafficked areas of downtown
- Scooter companies have no incentive to create a safe or welcoming system
- Balancing aesthetics, value, convenience, and enforcement is a far way off
- Riders continue to break local roadway laws and pedestrian awareness
From You’ve Got Mail to Rise of the Rest
Steve Case is most well known for his role in co-founding America Online (AOL) and partially responsible for injected “You’ve got mail!” into American cultural and technology history. Alongside a number of high powered executives, financiers, and entrepreneurs, Case is taking the road and visiting the Midwest to inject some well earned venture capital.
- The Midwest is heavily overlooked in terms of talent, innovation, and growth
- Industry and growth typically leans heavily towards the east coast and west coast
- $150 million investment fund directed to companies focused on solving regional issues
- Health, farming, manufacturing, robotics, delivery, health & fitness all considered viable
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