- Elon Musk slams analysts for asking 'boring, bonehead questions' in bizarre Tesla earnings call (TSLA)
- Elon Musk says Tesla will begin Model Y production in 2 years and it will be a 'manufacturing revolution' (TSLA)
- The Switch took Nintendo's profit to a 7-year high — and it's just the beginning (NTDOY)
- Facebook is keeping quiet about its wildest ambitions as it tries to show it can be trustworthy and mature (FB)
- Twitter is telling everyone to change their password after a bug left 330 million passwords exposed (TWTR)
- GoPro is jumping after its earnings beat (GPRO)
- Activision's earnings report was leaked early and it halted trading of the stock (ATVI)
- Amazon has been blamed for hurting the USPS — and now it's moving into an old post office
- Snap dives to another record low after its earnings disaster (SNAP)
- Elon Musk doesn't care about you
- 19 billionaires who grew up poor
- This $3 billion company lost a top exec only 2 months after its blockbuster IPO — and its stock is tanking (ZS)
- 30 AND UNDER: Rising stars in Silicon Valley tech who find hot startup deals and manage millions of dollars
- Square made $200,000 trading bitcoin (SQ)
- San Francisco is so expensive that people are spending $1 million to live next to a former nuclear-testing site — now some residents are freaking out after learning the surrounding area may still be radioactive
- The Chipotle E. coli outbreak inspired these 2 engineers to build a device that could quash the spread of foodborne illness
- A Frontier Airlines worker fatally stabbed a coworker at Philadelphia International Airport
- The 7 best exercises for toning your body right now
- CRYPTO INSIDER: Goldman Sachs will soon trade bitcoin-linked products
- Jeff Bezos: Blue Origin is 'the most important work that I'm doing'
Posted: 03 May 2018 02:32 PM PDT
Analysts wanted details about the company's finances and the Model 3, the mass-market sedan the company introduced in July and has failed to build at the rate it predicted. Musk, it seemed, wanted to talk about the future, not the present.
During the Q&A segment of the call, Musk rejected a question from Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. analyst Antonio Sacconaghi, who asked about the company's future capital requirements.
"Excuse me. Next. Boring bonehead questions are not cool," Musk replied.
The next question came from RBC Capital Markets analyst Joseph Spak, who asked about Model 3 reservations.
"These questions are so dry. They're killing me," Musk said, before turning to Galileo Russell, a retail investor who runs a YouTube channel about Tesla. Russell was allowed to ask several questions about a range of subjects, none of which concerned Tesla's financial health.
The call surprised analysts like Morgan Stanley's Adam Jonas, who told CNBC it was "arguably the most unusual" earnings call he had heard in 20 years.
Business Insider's Matthew DeBord wrote that the call was "easily the most bizarre Muskian performance yet."
Tesla's stock dropped 8% in after-hours trading on Wednesday and opened down 7% on Thursday. When the markets closed on Thursday, its stock was down almost 6%.
The company beat analyst projections on its first-quarter earnings report, posting an adjusted loss of $3.35 per share on revenue of $3.41 billion during the first quarter, compared to an expected adjusted loss of $3.42 per share on revenue of $3.32 billion, according to Bloomberg. But Tesla also posted the largest quarterly deficit in the company's 15-year history at $710 million.
Musk has said the company will become profitable in the second half of the year and won't need to raise money before 2019, despite skepticism from some investors and analysts. Tesla has been known to spend cash quickly and post consistent losses.
Posted: 03 May 2018 02:06 PM PDT
Tesla's upcoming Model Y crossover will be a gamechanger for manufacturing, CEO Elon Musk said on Wednesday during the company's first-quarter earnings call.
"I think Model Y is going to be a manufacturing revolution," Musk said. "It will be, I think, incredible from a manufacturing standpoint, because we do not want to go through this pain again."
Tesla is betting big on automation despite the fact that Model 3 production was delayed because of problems with new automated manufacturing systems at the Gigafactory.
The company originally aimed to build 5,000 Model 3 vehicles a week by the end of 2017, but later revised its target to making 5,000 Model 3 cars by the end of the second quarter. Tesla said that the company was making 2,270 Model 3 vehicles per week in April.
Musk has said many times that Tesla is focused on building the "machine that builds the machine," which basically means a highly automated manufacturing system. And the company reiterated this sentiment in its earnings letter when it stated that its "automation strategy is key" and that it's as "committed to it as ever."
Tesla is betting that its Model 3 manufacturing woes will ultimately set it up for a successful rollout of the Model Y. Musk didn't go into detail about Model 3 production plans during the call, but we know from his previous comments that the company does plan to build a new factory, where it will make the Model Y.
As far as timing goes, Musk said last May that the Model Y would arrive by late 2019 or in 2020, but on Wednesday, he clarified that further and said it would actually be more like 24 months, so closer to May 2020.
Beyond that, Musk said during the call that "the Model Y is going to be amazing" and "the Tesla pickup is going to be great."
"We have way more cool things than we know what to do," Musk said.
Read more about Tesla's bizarre first-quarter earnings call:
Posted: 03 May 2018 01:57 PM PDT
The Switch, Nintendo's newest console, can be used both as a home console and as a handheld device. It's had unprecedented success with customers, and it's giving new life to the company's previously suffering profits.
It was Nintendo's fastest-selling console ever, after it first launched in March 2017, and surpassed Nintendo's own expectations. As this chart from Statista shows, the hybrid console's unexpected success came at the right time — the failure of the Wii U, the immediate predecessor to the Switch, had dragged down Nintendo profits for years. Now, the Switch is bringing Nintendo closer to the glory days of its smash-hit Wii, released in 2006.
NOW WATCH: The top 10 games coming in 2018
Posted: 03 May 2018 01:57 PM PDT
But chastened by months of scandals, Facebook's 2018 F8, held earlier this week, was a more subdued affair.
Sure, Facebook discussed subjects that, by most other companies' standards, are practically science fiction, including the future of virtual reality and avoiding biases in artificial intelligence. But it has reined in its its wilder impulses at it attempts to put its best face forward to the world, and to demonstrate that it is still a trustworthy and responsible company.
For the last few months, the conversation around Facebook has centered on successive crises, from its use in the spread of misinformation and Russian propaganda to the misappropriation of tens of millions of its users' data in the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
Taking to the stage to open F8 on Tuesday, CEO Mark Zuckerberg made the same apologies he has been making ad nauseam. But he also made clear that Facebook won't stop launching new products and features just because it needs to fix its existing ones. "We will keep building," he declared to a cheering crowd of developers.
There was a bevvy of new announcements around products and features, including a dating service, augmented reality features in Instagram, new analytics tools, and tools to help big businesses use WhatsApp.
But the focus of the event was squarely on safety and responsibility: How can Facebooks apps and services ensure "meaningful" connections and identify any negative unintended consequences. "We could build technically perfect, secure products and bad things would still happen," chief security officer Alex Stamos observed in a speech on Tuesday.
This meant the smart-speaker Facebook is reported to be developing — a would-be rival to the Amazon Echo or Google Home — was a no-show, despite earlier rumours that it would be unveiled at the conference. Announcing an always-recording microphone that lives in customers' homes probably isn't the wisest PR move after a bruising privacy scandal, after all.
And it meant that Facebook's stranger and quirkier projects were nowhere to be seen. Back in 2017, Regina Dugan, the then-head of Facebook's experimental projects lab Building 8, revealed the social networking company has 60 people working on mind-reading tech, and is also developing far-out tech that lets people hear through their skin.
In contrast, the day two keynote on Wednesday was a more grounded affair — announcing new AI development tools and teasing advances in virtual reality hardware technology.
Facebook isn't giving up on its futuristic ambitions. At F8, Zuckerberg reiterated the company's commitment to its 10 year roadmap, which (if you look closely) still includes BCI: "Brain computer interfaces."
But smarting from a Congressional hearing and a deluge of bad press, Facebook seems to be trying to get its house in order and convince the public of its contrition before it starts shouting about its sci-fi visions for the future again.
Posted: 03 May 2018 01:35 PM PDT
Twitter discovered the glitch and did not find any "breach or misuse by anyone," the company said in a blog post.
The bug left passwords in an internal log "unmasked," meaning that instead of showing up as an encrypted set of random set of letters and numbers, the password itself was displayed in plain text.
Even though the company says it has no reason to believe anyone obtained any sensitive information, it is telling users to change their password "out of an abundance of caution."
The company also said it is taking steps to ensure the bug does not happen again.
Posted: 03 May 2018 01:18 PM PDT
GoPro is gaining more than 7% in post-market trading Thursday after it beat Wall Street expectations for the first-quarter.
The action-camera maker reported adjusted earnings of -$0.34 a share, beating the Wall Street estimate of -$0.36. Revenue came in at $202.3 million, topping the $182.2 million that was expected.
GoPro founder and CEO Nicholas Woodman gave investors an extra dose of optimism. He said sales of one of its main products, the HERO, should increase going forward.
"Initial demand for HERO is promising and we expect it to improve as large retail partners like Target and Walmart begin selling the product in the second quarter," Woodman said.
"We began to step up marketing programs in March which, coupled with overall expense controls, solid channel management and second half new product launches, gives us confidence for a successful 2018 for GoPro."
GoPro continued its dominance in the digital imaging business. It was the top-selling camera in the digital imaging category for the 17th straight quarter in North America, according to the earnings release.
GoPro is down this year 33.3%.
Posted: 03 May 2018 12:35 PM PDT
The company's first quarter results were scheduled to be published on Thursday at 4:30 p.m. ET, after the stock market's regular trading session closes. But information from the embargoed report was accidentally published around 1 p.m. ET, during regular market hours by Dow Jones Newswire.
The news agency confirmed the mistake to Business Insider in an email: "We regret our error as well as inadvertently breaking the embargo. We have issued a correction and are reviewing our processes."
It was not immediately clear whether the mistake by the newswire was due to human error, a computer glitch or some other factor.
Immediately after the report went live, Activision stock spiked — and then slowly crashed. When the error was noticed, soon after 2 p.m. ET, trading on Activision stock was halted. The official halt time was 2:12 p.m. ET, by which time stock was down 5%, overall, hours ahead of normal market close.
According to the accidentally published report, Activision beat expectations with over $1.7 billion in revenue for Q1 2018. That number was later revised, according to CNBC, to $1.965 billion.
Activision stock resumed trading at 3:25 p.m. ET, and has been steadily regaining value since.
Representatives for Activision did not respond to a request for comment as of publishing.
Posted: 03 May 2018 12:03 PM PDT
As the competition for Amazon's second headquarters heats up, the company isn't waiting around to build more North American offices.
The tech giant will move inside (and on top of) Vancouver's historic post office by 2023, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Tuesday. The project is expected to bring 3,000 new jobs in a variety of sectors, including e-commerce, cloud computing, and machine learning.
The redevelopment will also grow the number of employees Amazon has in Canada from 6,000 to 9,000, with the company's Vancouver research and development team growing to 5,000 workers total.
The new office complex, called the Post and developed by QuadReal, will give 416,000 square feet to Amazon (roughly 35% of the building). The rest of the redevelopment will include other offices, retail, and a food hall.
The announcement comes amid some controversy. Somewhat coincidentally, last month, US President Donald Trump accused the tech giant of financially hurting the US Postal Service.
Amazon is "costing the United States Post Office massive amounts of money for being their Delivery Boy," he tweeted on April 3, continuing, "Amazon should pay these costs (plus) and not have them bourne by the American Taxpayer. Many billions of dollars. P.O. leaders don't have a clue (or do they?)!"
On Wednesday, The Seattle Times also reported that Amazon is pausing expansion plans in its hometown of Seattle, due to a dispute over a proposed tax by the City Council. The tax — which could cost large employers $500 per employee annually — aims to alleviate the city's affordable housing and homelessness crises. Amazon doesn't want to pay the tax, so it's halting the construction of a downtown tower and reconsidering occupying another that's under construction, putting at least 7,000 jobs in jeopardy.
In recent years, some Seattle residents and local government officials have accused Amazon of perpetuating income inequality and raising housing prices in the city. Vancouver — or at least local politicians there — seem more welcoming to Amazon.
Meanwhile, 20 North American metros (not including Vancouver) are battling it out to receive Amazon's second headquarters, HQ2. According to the company, the $5 billion campus will create 50,000 jobs over the next two decades. Chicago, one of the finalists, has proposed that Amazon move into its old post office.
As Gizmodo notes, the fact that Amazon — a company that depends on local couriers around the world to deliver products — is moving offices into a former post office is interesting but not quite ironic. The new building will not serve as a warehouse for processing and shipping, but a hub for Amazon's tech workers.
The online retail giant has also built an office on the site where the world's largest mall once stood. The now-demolished mall in North Randall, Ohio was likely a victim of America's retail apocalypse, a phenomenon that has contributed to the closure of thousands mall-based stores around the country since 2000. There are many factors that have led to brick-and-mortar's decline, but many retail analysts point to the Amazon Effect — a consumer shift from shopping in traditional stores to online.
Amazon's new Vancouver office building is another sign that the company doesn't plan on slowing down its rapid global expansion any time soon.
NOW WATCH: How Amazon gets away with not paying taxes
Posted: 03 May 2018 11:56 AM PDT
Shares of Snap slide more than 4% to an all-time low of $10.52 Thursday afternoon, less than 48 hours after the company reported first-quarter earnings that disappointed investors and sent the stock tumbling.
Downgrades on Wall Street sent to the stock to a record low Wednesday, surpassing the previous low mark set in August 2017.
"We are downgrading SNAP shares from Outperform to Perform and removing our $19 target," Jacob Helfstein, an analyst for Oppenheimer, said in a note to clients this week. "We continue to believe SNAP garners high user loyalty and levels of engagement. However, most recent app redesign seems to have been "last straw" for some advertisers, who are now unlikely to give platform another chance absent significant daily-active-user reacceleration (no catalyst in sight)."
Snap announced in its earnings report that it was testing a new Snapchat design that would rollback some of the users' hated features from the disastrous redesign that launched in February. The update will move celebrities' stories back to the friends feed on the left-hand side of the camera, while keeping the "Discover" features, like news and entertainment, on the right.
Shares of Snap are now down 37% from their initial public offering price of $17 in March of 2017.
Posted: 03 May 2018 11:36 AM PDT
By you I mean his customers, Wall Street, his shareholders, his creditors, his employees, and anyone who just might be interested in learning more about electric cars.
This lack of interest in anything you was on florid display during Tesla's first-quarter earnings call Wednesday evening. Musk had virtually no details on his cash-poor company's progress solving the problems that will define its future. He had no details about when Tesla would meet production goals for the Model 3, how he was going fix production issues, or how he planned to swing the company into profitability.
This is because none of that interests him. That has to do with you, and what interests Musk has to do with him.
Musk is more interested in the appearance of action at Tesla than action itself. That's because, so far, the appearance of action has gotten him as much praise and adulation from the faithful as inaction. Musk is the anti-Cicero. For him seeming is as good as being.
"Every metric that we've looked at internally suggests we are the best in class," he said on the call, failing to discuss what those metrics are or any metric, really.
Seeming, so far, has done enough to give Musk what he really craves — enough money to run his businesses with contempt for anyone who might question him, and, more important, the role of venerated leader of the cult of Musk. Everything else is just bothersome detail.
Now the cult of Musk has some good attributes. People love how Teslas drive, and Space X has captured the imagination of the entire country. In what are unquestionably confusing times, the cult of Musk is getting Americans excited about the future. For even the most cynical people, the positivity of endless possibility through science is infectious.
That's where my list of positives ends.
How you do anything is how you do everything
Now back to those bothersome details, because that's where you come into play.
My colleague Matt Debord wrote that Musk's contempt on the call was clearly, singularly for Wall Street. Debord's assessment doesn't go far enough for my taste, obviously, and far be it for me to defend the cabal of geniuses who gave the world such hits as the 2008 financial crisis and the tech bubble.
But it's completely normal for numbers guys to ask questions about numbers. When they get yelled about it for asking "boring, bonehead" questions about a business their clients are investing in, that's a red flag. Questions about the strategic "moat" protecting the business, in this case Tesla's exclusive supercharger network, should not be met with comments like the following:
"First of all, I think moats are lame," Musk said. "They’re, like, nice, in a sort of quaint, vestigial way. But if your only defense against invading armies is a moat, you will not last long. What matters is the pace of innovation. That is the fundamental determinant of competitiveness."
This is not a game of Dungeons and Dragons with your friends. This is a business, and your investors (shareholders and creditors) would like you to protect it. At some point during the call, with all the enthusiasm of a Chinese politician reading out their guilty plea on state TV, Musk monotoned something about how he realizes Tesla "isn't a real company until" it's profitable.
Even Adam Jonas, one of Wall Street's most faithful Tesla fans, got the side of Musk's tongue for suggesting Musk raise money while he could. This in the midst of reports that the company is burning cash at a mind-bending rate.
So, no, Musk does not care about Wall Street bankers, and frankly that's fine. But he also doesn't care about his creditors and shareholders either. That is not OK.
Where are the customers' yachts (Teslas)?
And then there are the customers. On the call, Musk said he was focusing on Model 3 production, and as such is not focused on the Tesla Semi. We "haven't really tried to sell the Semi," he said.
Oh, so you've accepted about 2,000 reservations, and who knows how many thousands of dollars, for a vehicle you haven't really started working on manufacturing yet?
Reports that Tesla is underpaying workers and undercounts their injuries have barely gotten attention. Perhaps that's more of a reflection on us than it is on Tesla. Either way, add employees to the list of things Musk would rather not bother getting into detail about.
You know what else Musk does care about? The media and the short sellers. These are two entities that can't attack or change what Tesla is, only its perception. Nevertheless, these are two entities that bother him. Musk called short-seller attacks "hurtful" in Rolling Stone, and on the call he seethed about reporters who dared write about Autopilot crashes.
I bring this up here because it should be clear to anyone with the desire to experiment with any new technology that there should be as much information in the public domain about it as possible. In this case we're talking about the potential for a deadly car crash.
Musk disingenuously compared coverage of traditional car crashes (the causes of which have been known for decades) with an Autopilot crash, the causes for which are still being understood.
The comparison itself is an insult to anyone who might consider driving a Tesla at all, let alone on Autopilot. Which brings me back to my point: Musk doesn't care about customers.
Toward the end of the call someone asked if Musk could just please (please) send a tweet out or something when Model 3 production ramps up to 3,000 cars a week. The investor said he was concerned about the volatility of Tesla's share price.
Musk responded to this by telling the investor that if he didn't have the stomach for volatility, he shouldn't own Tesla's stock.
He has more important things to tweet, anyway.
Posted: 03 May 2018 11:16 AM PDT
• Billionaires don't always come from moneyed backgrounds.
• In fact, many famous billionaires actually grew up poor.
• From George Soros to Larry Ellison to Oprah Winfrey, here's a look at how some of the wealthiest people on the planet came up from nothing.
In fact, many came from nothing at all.
The "rags-to-riches" trope may be a cliché, but it's one that's definitely grounded in reality for some famous billionaires.
Through extraordinary grit and perseverance, individuals across the globe have beat the odds and achieved their own rags-to-riches stories.
Here are 19 people who started off life poor and went on to become billionaires:
Guy Laliberté was a fire-eater before founding Cirque du Soleil.
Net worth: $1.19 billion
At the beginning of his career, Laliberté had fire in his belly — literally. The Canadian-born circus busker played the accordion, walked on stilts, and ate fire.
Later on, Business Insider previously reported, he took a chance and flew a troupe from Quebec to Los Angeles without purchasing a return fair. The circus troup traveled to Las Vegas and became Cirque du Soleil.
Laliberté is now the CEO of Cirque de Soleil.
Kenny Troutt, the founder of Excel Communications, paid his way through college by selling life insurance.
Net worth: $1.41 billion
Troutt grew up with a bartender dad and paid for his own tuition at Southern Illinois University by selling life insurance. He made most of his money from phone company Excel Communications, which he founded in 1988 and took public in 1996. Two years later, Troutt merged his company with Teleglobe in a $3.5 billion deal.
He's now retired and invests heavily in racehorses.
Montpellier rugby club president and Entrepreneur of the Year Mohed Altrad survived on one meal a day when he moved to France.
Net worth: $2.6 billion
Born into a nomadic tribe in the Syrian dessert to a poor mother who was raped by his father and died when he was young, Altrad was raised by his grandmother. She banned him from attending school in Raqqa, the city that is now capital of ISIS. Altrad attended school anyway, and when he moved to France to attend university, he knew no French and lived off of one meal a day.
Still, he earned a PhD in computer science, worked for some leading French companies, and eventually bought a failing scaffolding company, which he transformed into one of the world's leading manufacturers of scaffolding and cement mixers, Altrad Group.
He has previously been named French Entrepreneur of the Year and World Entrepreneur of the Year.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:53 AM PDT
Bill Welch will leave his role on May 14, after four years at the company, first as chief revenue officer and then as COO. He joined Zscaler out of executive roles at Symantec and then Hewlett-Packard.
Welch will take on "a more senior executive role at a leading technology company," according to a statement. It's unclear where he's going.
Despite Wall Street's reaction on Thursday, Zscaler CEO Jay Chaudhry said in a statement that Welch's departure had "no impact" on the company's upcoming third quarter financial results, which the company will announced on June 6.
Analysts, however, anticipated that the optics of the situation would take its toll on Zscaler's share price.
"Strategically, Mr. Welch is leaving for a more senior role at another technology company," Barclays analyst Saket Kalia said in a note early Thursday. "However, tactically seeing a head of sales depart on the heels of a successful IPO may get read negatively."
Zscaler, an enterprise cloud security company, took its shares public on March 16, raising $192 million. The company set its share price at $16, which shot up 75% to around $28 on the first day of trading.
Shares traded around $27.75 on Thursday, up from an all-time-low of $26.06.
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:47 AM PDT
Silicon Valley is home to some of the hottest venture capital firms worldwide. In the valley, the stakes are high. To be a successful investor, you need a keen business sense and attention to detail, a forward-thinking outlook, and a strategic eye for investment. A handful of venture capitalists have acquired these skills early on, before the age of 30.
We've rounded up some of the top Silicon Valley investors under the age of 30 at leading firms. In addition to our own research, we reached out to VC firms and investors in Silicon Valley for nominations on noteworthy up-and-comers in the valley's tech scene to help come up with our final list.
Here they are:
Saam Motamedi co-founded machine learning startup Guru Labs before joining Greylock Partners in 2016.
Title: Investor, Greylock Partners
Companies he's worked with: Blend, Spoke, and Avi Networks. Motamedi also works with several companies that are currently unannounced.
Jennifer Kaehms kicked off her career with a cold email to Canvas Venture's co-founder Rebecca Lynn. Now, she's involved with the firm's Stanford and UC Berkeley liaison programs and hosts events to help out junior members of venture firms.
Title: Associate, Canvas Ventures
Companies she's worked with: Gabi, Casetext, Vida Health, Figure Eight, Vida Health, Casetext, Luminar Technologies, Gabi, and HealthLoop.
Before joining Unshackled Ventures, Lucas Rocha worked with Dorm Room Fund, JetBlue Ventures, and Underscore.vc. So far, he's assisted in the deployment of more than $100 million in capital.
Title: Investor, Unshackled Ventures
Companies he's worked with: Joby Aviation, Salsify, Lily, Pluto AI, Filament, FLYR, CloudZero, and Volantio.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:44 AM PDT
Square jumped on the bitcoin bandwagon back in January when it started letting Cash App customers buy and sell bitcoin. And in its first-quarter results released Wednesday, the fintech company revealed the impact of bitcoin on its business.
Bitcoin brought in a $200,000 profit for Square in the quarter. The Cash App facilitated trading of the cryptocurrency without charging any fees. Price fluctuations in the cryptocurrency helped the company sell $34.1 million worth of bitcoin at a cost of $33.9 million.
Square founder and CEO Jack Dorsey has been an endorser of the cryptocurrency, saying it provides an "opportunity to get more people access to the financial system." He also thinks bitcoin is a "transformational technology" and will be the world's "single currency" in 10 years.
"If they actually charged a fee as some of their competitors do, that number would be much higher," Nomura Instinet analyst Dan Dolev said. "They're just basically testing out, allowing people who don't normally trade bitcoin to trade bitcoin."
The company isn't depending on bitcoin for a large chunk of revenue but its popularity indicated potential, he said. Dolev's own research found 60% of Square merchants are willing to accept bitcoin as payment, so it's possible the company can monetize bitcoin use by enacting a fee once cryptocurrency is more widely used in day-to-day transactions.
The launch of bitcoin on the Cash App may have spurred downloads and increased adoption of Square by new customers according to Dolev. In the first-quarter, the Cash App hosted 7 million monthly active users and continued to be a top 25 app in Apple's App store.
While bitcoin comes with risks, specifically the digital currency's continued volatility in pricing, Dolev isn't worried about Square. He said even if bitcoin went to zero, Square will still be a successful company.
"The cohesive ecosystem that they're building is only going to get better," he said. "They already have a great brand. With [the acquisition of] Weebly, they're going to have much better access to the online channels. "
Square is up more than 22% this year.
San Francisco is so expensive that people are spending $1 million to live next to a former nuclear-testing site — now some residents are freaking out after learning the surrounding area may still be radioactive
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:40 AM PDT
When the couple stumbled on the San Francisco Shipyard, a middle-class neighborhood rising on the site of a former nuclear-testing facility, they thought they'd found their real-estate bliss at an affordable price.
They came to the shipyard in 2017 because of an ambitious pitch from the mega-developer Lennar and its spinoff, Five Point. Together, the builders sold them on a vision of turning the abandoned shipyard, which has a history of radioactive contamination, into a live-work community with 12,000 new homes.
The shipyard is one of the last affordable areas in San Francisco, where a critical lack of housing has caused home prices to soar. The median price of a house in the city is $1.5 million.
Residents like David and Rick, who declined to give their last names because they feared backlash from the developers, considered themselves pioneers of the next hottest housing market in San Francisco. Beginning in 2014, hundreds of buyers put down money for homes costing roughly $450,000 to $1.5 million; the average cost of a two-bedroom condo is around $1 million.
Homeowners signed up with the expectation, they said, that they would essentially live in a construction zone for the next 10 to 15 years. Lennar told them the development wouldn't be completed until the early 2030s. But people held out, thinking the wait would be worth it when the promised amenities, like parks, office space, supermarkets, and an outdoor mall, arrived alongside their industrial-chic condos.
The shipyard residents who spoke with Business Insider said they now believe the development's timeline is no longer realistic amid reports suggesting the land around the new construction may still be contaminated with nuclear radiation left over from the US Navy's nuclear-testing facility.
The city of San Francisco, which accepts land from the Navy and transfers it to the shipyard developers, won't allow development in the surrounding area until the Navy can show that it's clean and safe.
Five Point says the $8 billion project is still expected to be finished by the early 2030s.
Last fall, the Navy received the results of a third-party data review that found Tetra Tech, a government contractor tasked with identifying and removing hazardous waste at the retired shipyard, had botched the cleanup before construction even began.
Former Tetra Tech workers claimed to have faked soil tests to expedite the city's largest redevelopment project. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, as much as 97% of the cleanup data in some areas may have been falsified or suspect. The Navy now plans to redo all the testing it paid Tetra Tech more than $350 million to perform.
In 2015, Five Point and Lennar, which is responsible for building and selling the first 926 homes at the shipyard, planned to deliver 800,000 square feet of office space and 1,400 housing units by 2018, according to news reports. Lennar has built and sold about 260 units, with another 50 homes marketed as for sale. There's no office space in operation.
The area remains mostly unwalkable, with little public transit, few schools, and a high crime rate in the surrounding neighborhood. There's a lone general store that sells snacks, soda, and toiletries. Mountains of dirt and rusted military buildings encircle the new homes.
"I feel like I'm in the middle of a suburb with nowhere to go, and it's been that way in our neighborhood for quite a while," said Rick, who is retired. "There really is nothing."
Some shipyard residents fear delays, while others worry for their safety
Business Insider spoke with about a dozen residents at public meetings held at the shipyard since January. Some said they feared that the value of their real-estate investments would slide after the reports outlining fraud, while others worried for their family's safety.
The homes at the shipyard sit on a hill above the naval base, where military housing and administrative offices once overlooked the San Francisco Bay. The Navy says it doesn't plan to retest this swath because the military never found radioactive contamination there.
"These people are absolutely 100% safe," Derek Robinson, the Navy's environmental coordinator for the shipyard, told Business Insider in January.
On Tuesday, 149 residents of the nearby Bayview-Hunters Point neighborhood filed a class-action lawsuit against Tetra Tech seeking $27 billion in damages. They accuse Tetra Tech of exposing residents to toxic materials and endangering their health by bungling the cleanup.
But shipyard residents most often cited concerns about the development's future.
The first settlers of the shipyard, located on an overlooked patch of San Francisco's southern waterfront, bought in with the expectation that a community would rise around them over the next 1o to 15 years. But the plans may be further delayed if the Navy has to redo the cleanup because some parcels there may still be contaminated with radioactive pollution.
At a meeting of homeowners and city employees in February, a young architect from Five Point shared a slideshow presentation containing updates to the master plan, including a new transit center, bike lanes, and a water taxi for commuters to be built by 2025.
About a dozen residents sat quietly for the first hour.
Sometime after the architect addressed the new road infrastructure but before he proposed a water-treatment center, a resident named Jason Fried stood up. Lennar had sold him on "a bill of goods," Fried said, and he wondered when the developer would start delivering on its promises.
On the screen, a small disclaimer at the bottom of the slideshow said: "There is no guarantee that the project will be approved, developed, or built as shown."
"I'll tell you this much: I was shown a lot of pictures of things that have not been built, and they did not have this disclaimer on it," said Fried, a former political organizer.
Other residents piped up. Eric Vanderpool, a lawyer, asked about the status of the Navy's investigation. He wanted to know how the delays would affect development.
Five Point's CEO said in a recent earnings call that the developer was shifting its focus to the part of the project at nearby Candlestick Park, where the San Francisco Giants once played, because it doesn't have cleanup issues.
Homeowners expressed disappointment that Five Point would build more homes before developing more parks. The site's single park is a popular gathering place for residents, and construction on the much larger Northside Park, which was supposed to be completed by 2019, is now on hold because of the scandal.
"Part of your promise to our neighborhood before any of this was built was that we'd have parks," said Richard Laufman, who lives nearby and is part of a local neighborhood association.
At this rate, he said, "I'm going to be gone before it gets here."
The shipyard left behind San Francisco's worst toxic-waste site
Before tech workers, artists, and other young professionals arrived at the shipyard, it was home to a nuclear-testing facility. From 1949 to 1969, the US Navy operated a top-secret laboratory where scientists tested ships and military equipment exposed to atomic-bomb explosions.
In the event that the Cold War escalated, the Navy would know how to deal with the aftermath.
After the shipyard closed, in 1994, it was declared a Superfund site, and the Navy began the multimillion-dollar cleanup. It hired a contractor, Tetra Tech, to test and scrub the site.
From 2012 to 2017, several former employees of Tetra Tech told local news outlets they had faked soil tests at the shipyard. They claimed to have swapped samples from areas known to be highly contaminated with dirt from clean areas and manipulated computer data that analyzed radiation levels to hurry the project along.
The Navy said it planned to retest "all areas" at the shipyard where Tetra Tech performed work, though a Navy representative told Curbed SF in March that there was no timeline for when that might start. The Navy did not immediately respond to a request for comment for this story.
Tetra Tech has since offered to pay for retesting the property and denied allegations that it falsified data.
"We believe real testing will demonstrate the thoroughness of Tetra Tech's work and clear up the falsehoods, rumors, and misleading information that exists today," Charlie MacPherson, Tetra Tech's vice president of corporate media and communications, told Business Insider.
Few residents said they're worried about coming into contact with radioactive contamination at the shipyard, because their homes sit where military barracks — as opposed to nuclear-testing facilities — used to be. They're concerned about the shipyard's future more than its past.
Residents were promised a city within a city
At the shipyard, the first group of 88 townhouses and condos sold out about eight months after Lennar started sales in 2015 — a feat that the nation's largest home builder touted in news reports. A year later, two resale units at the shipyard were listed at a 30% price increase.
Residents told Business Insider that life at the shipyard has fallen short of their expectations.
Back in 2015, when Lennar sold the first homes, the website showed off the developer's ambitions, with the words "Welcome Visionaries" splashed across the home page.
According to a 2015 version of the site available on Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, Lennar asked prospective buyers to imagine a place designed for pedestrians, with broad sidewalks and short blocks. Over 330 acres of green space and ecological park would surround the housing so that residents could easily get away for an afternoon of picnicking, hiking, or bird-watching.
Bike paths and a new rapid-transit bus system would connect the area to downtown San Francisco. Residents might work out of an on-site business incubator, enjoy local bands and speakers at a 10,000-seat arts venue, and "share in community over arts, crafts, fabrics, clothing, and food" at an outdoor plaza called the International African Marketplace.
The plans for the shipyard are more or less the same, but some residents question whether it's still possible that these amenities will be delivered on time amid delays with the land transfer.
The shipyard is still an active construction site, with crews cranking away on more housing and infrastructure. In nearby Candlestick Park, workers are preparing the land for development of a retail corridor, hotels, and office space.
Fried, who moved into the shipyard in 2015, said he feels as if Lennar took his money and "stopped caring." He remembered visiting the sales office before he bought a condo and being pitched on a pocket park that would be steps from his door. Later, Lennar told him that the city intended to build affordable-housing units on the land instead. The park has been scrapped.
David and Rick, the couple who moved into the shipyard last year, said the developer showed them an artist's renderings of the neighborhood before they bought their home, which was previously owned. The plans featured the same park catty-corner from their condo.
Rick said he is frustrated that he often finds out about changes to the development plan through neighbors and the news, rather than from Lennar and Five Point. Other residents echoed his concern, claiming that Lennar and Five Point have been poorly communicating with residents.
"Don't throw people out here and then say, 'You're on your own — too bad,'" he said.
Lennar declined to comment on claims made by shipyard residents for this story.
In the past year, shipyard residents have started organizing. They gather in a private Facebook group and on email threads, sharing the stories that Lennar and Five Point tell them.
Build it — they hope — and the buyers will come
Finding buyers for new shipyard condos has proved more difficult in 2018 than 2014, when residents looked to the area as the last bastion of affordable housing in the city.
At least six prospective buyers have broken contracts to buy homes at the shipyard "out of concern for their health and safety," according to a memo sent by Lennar obtained through a public-records request and reviewed by the San Francisco Business Times in 2017.
Still, out of the about 260 townhouses and condos sold at the shipyard, only a handful have been relisted.
One former resident said he expected more resale units to come online this year because many more residents will have passed the two-year mark since they bought. Homeowners pay a capital-gains tax when they sell a property for more than what they paid for it, but the federal tax code allows for a major tax exemption if the seller lived at the residence for two of the past five years before the sale.
Lennar is slashing prices on new homes for sale. Real-estate site Redfin posted 16 condo sales at the shipyard since January, shortly before reports about falsified data came out. Thirteen homes sold for below asking price (between $2,000 and $200,000 less). That's rare in San Francisco, where houses typically sell for 13% above asking and condos go for 3% higher.
The units are still more expensive than they were three or four years ago. Units ranging in size between one and three bedrooms slide in price from the high $600,000s to $1.5 million.
David and Rick said they didn't plan on selling their condo, at least not in the next several years.
The couple remains optimistic that the shipyard will someday be finished.
"I mean, I think it's a great investment if they do," Rick said.
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:33 AM PDT
Christine Schindler and Dutch Waanders have long been intrigued by dirty hands.
Over the past year, the two co-founders have been working on a product that they say will showcase just exactly how germ-ridden our hands can be. Their consensus isn't exactly a secret, either: It's accepted as science fact that unwashed hands are typically covered in germs and that these bacteria can make us sick and contaminate our food.
Schindler and Waander's product is called PathSpot, a technology that uses spectroscopy — the study of the way light interacts with matter — to determine exactly how filthy our hands are throughout the day. PathSpot just graduated from the TechStars startup mentorship program in New York City, and is in the middle of securing more funding.
The technology could provide a powerful asset to businesses that depend on keeping their workplaces bacteria-free. Currently, Schindler and Waanders have installed their product at 20 different farms, packaging facilities, and restaurants within the US. Since the beginning of the year, Schindler said that PathSpot has scanned more than 45,000 hands.
In the future, the co-founders hope to make their product the de facto form of sanitary regulation in hospitals, restaurants, airports, and schools. And it all started with Chipotle.
Inspired by Chipotle
Schindler and Waander, who met during shared biochemical engineering classes at Duke University, were both studying the way that light interacts with objects. While Schindler was researching how light could be used to detect breast and cervical cancer, Waanders was using light to track stem cell treatments for osteoarthritis.
But the pairs' career trajectory shifted course when Schindler started reading up on the infamous E. coli outbreak at Chipotle restaurants.
The controversy over Chipotle's food safety practices inspired Schindler to research how foodborne illness spreads at restaurants. She discovered an off-putting trend: 89% of foodborne illnesses are the result of cross-contamination from hands that haven't been properly washed.
"We're both really passionate about how we can use technology to overcome gaps in the way healthcare operates," Schindler told Business Insider. "It doesn't make sense that so many people get sick from foodborne illness simply because people aren't washing their hands."
A 2013 study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 62% of restaurant workers don't wash their hands after handling raw beef.
Schindler and Waanders decided to create a technology that could potentially determine whether or not someone's hands are actually clean.
Using circuitry acquired from a local Radio Shack's going-out-of-business sale, the two worked on the device day and night over the course of several months.
PathSpot uses reflected light to detect disease
The result of Schindler and Waanders' efforts is a small black box attached to a sensor-connected iPad. Place your hands beneath the device and it emits light on a certain wavelength. The iPad scans the light reflected by your hand, and runs a proprietary algorithm to analyze the way that it fluoresces.
Waander and Schindler said that there's a fundamental difference in the wavelength of light that fluoresces on a contaminated hand versus a clean hand. If bacteria is detected, the device flashes red. If your hands are clean, it emits a blue glow.
One of PathSpot's challenges is ensuring that the device, once installed, is consistently used by employees. To overcome this hurdle, PathSpot keeps extensive records on employees and tracks their interaction with the device via their employee ID numbers. Miss a few scans, and PathSpot alerts a manager.
If an employee scans their hands with PathSpot and fails, then they have a few minutes to wash their hands again and re-scan them; if they don't, PathSpot lets a manager know of a potential breach of food safety protocol.
In the future, Waanders and Schindler hope to make a portable device that could attach to a smartphone, so that it could be used by individuals as well.
When asked whether or not they have plans to meet with Chipotle, Schindler said that the Mexican fast food outlet is on the horizon, but that for now, they're biding their time.
"We're waiting until we expand a little bit further," she said. "We definitely see this as something that big chains will be interested in, and we've had some early conversations with the large national chains about the potential for using this."
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:25 AM PDT
The department said preliminary reports indicate that the stabbing occurred at Gate E6 in the secured area between two of the workers. The victim was taken to a nearby hospital where he was later confirmed dead, and the suspect has been taken into custody. No passengers were harmed.
A Frontier spokesperson told Business Insider that the parties involved in the incident were employees of Worldwide Flight Services. The spokesperson did not immediately confirm whether the employees were working for Frontier Airlines on a contract basis at the time of the incident.
"We've been made aware of an incident involving employees of Worldwide Flight Services (WFS) at Philadelphia International Airport," the spokesperson said. "The Frontier Airlines family is saddened to learn about this event and our hearts go out to those touched by the tragedy. We have reached out to WFS to assist them in any way possible as they deal with this incident."
David Spunt, a reporter for a CBS affiliate, wrote on Twitter that three employees of a cleaning company contracted by Frontier had fought in a break room on the tarmac. Spunt also wrote that the victim was "likely" killed with a box cutter.
According to WPVI, the incident occurred around 11:30 a.m. on Thursday.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:18 AM PDT
Trainers know that the exercises we choose, and how we choose to do them, can have a huge impact on body shape.
When it comes to getting ready to take your clothes off this summer, some moves are proven to work better and quicker than others at getting a slim, toned, beach-ready physique.
Tony Maloney, a trainer and exercise physiologist at the National Institute for Fitness and Sport in Indianapolis, shared his best tips for slimming down this summer with Business Insider.
It turns out that a lot of basic exercises that we all know and recognize are still some of the best for anybody trying to get a little leaner. Take a look:
Push-ups are still one of the best moves for toning from the waist up.
Push-ups are a great way to tone the upper body and build shapely arms and shoulders. But that's not all they're good for. "You're still working the trunk, so you're working the abs and the core," Maloney said.
Planks and side planks are stellar core exercises.
Maloney says he prefers plank moves to crunches or sit-ups, because you're less likely to do them wrong and injure the spine. Plus, they're generally more effective at building a tight core. "You're holding and stabilizing the spine," he said. "That's really what the core is supposed to do."
When you get really good at regular planks, start moving your extremities for some extra-intense fun.
Lifting one elbow or one foot is "going to challenge the system big time," Maloney said.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:09 AM PDT
Welcome to Crypto Insider, Business Insider's roundup of all the bitcoin and cryptocurrency news you need to know today. Sign up here to get this email delivered direct to your inbox.
Bitcoin got a boost Thursday following a New York Times report that said Goldman Sachs will begin trading products linked to bitcoin.
The Wall Street investment bank will soon start trading bitcoin futures for its clients, according to the New York Times. It will also offer so-called non-deliverable forwards, another type of derivative product which the bank will create.
Should the bank get approval from the necessary regulators, it would trade bitcoin.
Here are the current crypto prices:
In the news:
New to Crypto Insider? Business Insider has a ton of articles to get you caught up to speed, including:
What other questions do you have about crypto? Ask them in Business Insider's Crypto Insider Facebook group today to discuss with readers from all over the world, as well as BI editorial staff.
Posted: 03 May 2018 10:05 AM PDT
The founder of Blue Origin and Amazon, Jeff Bezos, was recently interviewed by the CEO of Axel Springer, Mathias Döpfner. Bezos talked about why he considers Blue Origin to be above anything else he does. Following is a full transcript of the video.
Mathias Döpfner: ... Could you share with us the vision of Blue Origin and the idea of space tourism with reusable rockets?
Jeff Bezos: Yes. This is super important to me, and I believe on the longest timeframe - and really here I'm thinking of a timeframe of a couple of hundred years, so over millions of decades - I believe and I get increasing conviction with every passing year, that Blue Origin, the space company, is the most important work that I'm doing. And so there is a whole plan for Blue Origin.
Döpfner: Really, so you'd say retail, e-commerce, clouds, publishing - that's all less relevant than the space project.
Bezos: Yes, and I'll tell you why. First of all, of course, I'm interested in space, because I'm passionate about it. I've been studying it and thinking about it since I was a five-year-old boy. But that is not why I'm pursuing this work. I'm pursuing this work, because I believe, if we don't, we will eventually end up with a civilization of stasis, which I find very demoralizing. I don't want my great-grandchildren's great-grandchildren to live in a civilization of stasis. We all enjoy a dynamic civilization of growth and change. Let's think about what powers that. We are not really energy-constrained. Let me give you just a couple of numbers. If you take your body - your metabolic rate as a human it's just an animal, you eat food, that's your metabolism - you burn about a 100 Watts. Your power, your body is the same as a 100-Watt light bulb. We're incredibly efficient. Your brain is about 60 Watts of that. Amazing. But if you extrapolate in developed countries where we use a lot of energy, on average in developed countries our civilizational metabolic rate is 11 000 Watts. So, in a natural state, where we're animals, we're only using a 100 Watts. In our actual developed-world state, we're using 11 000 Watts. And it's growing. For a century or more, it's been compounding at a few percent a year - our energy usage as a civilization.
Now if you take baseline energy usage globally across the whole world and compound it at just a few percent a year for just a few hundred years, you have to cover the entire surface of the Earth in solar cells. That's the real energy crisis. And it's happening soon. And by soon, I mean within just a few 100 years. We don't actually have that much time. So what can you do? Well, you can have a life of stasis, where you cap how much energy we get to use. You have to work only on efficiency. By the way, we've always been working on energy efficiency, and still we grow our energy usage. It's not like we have been squandering energy. We have been getting better at using it with every passing decade. So, stasis would be very bad I think.
Now take the scenario, where you move out into the Solar System. The Solar System can easily support a trillion humans. And if we had a trillion humans, we would have a thousand Einsteins and a thousand Mozarts and unlimited (for all practical purposes) resources and solar power unlimited for all practical purposes. That's the world that I want my great-grandchildren's great-grandchildren to live in.
By the way, I believe that in that timeframe we will move all heavy industry off of Earth and Earth will be zoned residential and light industry. It will basically be a very beautiful planet. We have sent robotic probes to every planet in this solar system now and believe me this is the best one.
Döpfner: Jeff when can I buy the first ticket to do a little space tour.
Bezos: We are going to be… So the first tourism vehicle - we won't be selling tickets yet - but we may put humans in it at the end of this year or at the beginning of next year. We are very close. We are building a very large orbital vehicle. We have been working on that for more than five years. It will fly for the first time in 2020. The key is reusability. This civilization I'm talking about of getting comfortable living and working in space and having millions of people and then billions of people and then finally a trillion people in space - you can't do that with space vehicles that you use once and then throw away. It's a ridiculous, costly way to get into space.
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