Tag Archives: China

The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming

David Wallace-Wells, deputy editor and climate columnist for New York magazine has a new book The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming. It talks about the severity of climate change. “Russia could play a bigger, more dynamic role of rival in the future. And the same is true of China.” Regarding green technology “We could save $26 trillion in the global economy just by 2030, which is a very fast return, if we decarbonize quickly.” Regarding sea levels “So, we could see at least a hundred feet of sea level rise, possibly as much as 260 feet of sea level rise, if we melt all of the ice.” Regarding heat waves “You see, you know, projections that many of the biggest cities in India and the Middle East will be lethally hot in summer as soon as 2050, which means you really won’t be able to go outside during the summer without incurring some risk of heat stroke.”

Increasingly there are youth movements calling for action like the Green New Deal in America or the Extinction Rebellion in Europe. On February 21, 2019, sixteen year-old Greta Thunberg of Sweden addressed the European Union: “We need to focus every inch of our being on climate change, because if we fail to do so, then all our achievements and progress have been for nothing. And all that will remain of our political leaders’ legacy will be the greatest failure of human history. And they will be remembered as the greatest villains of all time, because they have chosen not to listen and not to act. … And if you still say that we are wasting valuable lesson time, then let me remind you that our political leaders have wasted decades through denial and inaction. And since our time is running out, we have decided to take action. We have started to clean up your mess, and we will not stop until we are done.”

Copyright 2019 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Mar. 23, 2015 The New Yorker

On Mar. 16, 2015 The New Yorker’s James Surowiecki wrote “In Praise of Short Sellers” about activist short selling investors. They shorted Lumber Liquidators stock based on reports that they were selling carcinogenic formaldehyde laminate wood products made in China. “stock prices are more accurate when short sellers are active.

Louis Menand wrote “A Friend Of The Devil” Soviet and American involvement in student organizations during the Cold War.

Note: 11-5-17 Beaverton OR Yahoo!

Copyright 2015 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Jan. 12, 2015 Wall Street Journal

On Jan. 12, 2015 the Wall Street Journal’s Mike Ramsey wrote “Electric-Car Pioneer Musk Charges Head-On at Detroit” about the way Tesla founder Elon Musk’s runs his car company. “During the launch of Model S production in 2012, Mr. Musk set up an office in the middle of the factory floor in Fremont Calif., and took over when hiccups emerged. He told workers to buy USB cables at nearby Fry’s Electronics Inc. stores after a snarl delayed a shipment from China.”

Gotta love the way Musk solves a problem. I wonder what kind of commission the salesperson at Fry’s got?

Copyright 2015 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Aug. 15, 2013 GABA Hardware Startups

gabalogoBartschat Steffen Bowie Scott Pierce Mike Raab Ken Strohband Sven 2 Zimmermann Daniel

On Thursday, Aug 15, 2013 in Palo Alto at WilmerHale, GABA presented “The Rise of the Hardware Startup.” Steffen Bartschat of Hill88 moderated panelists Scott Bowie of Zao Technology Innovations, Mike Pierce of LUMO BodyTech, Ken Raab of Sonic Manufacturing and Sven Strohband of Khosla Ventures. They discussed KPCB technology expert Mary Meeker’s recognition of the Wearable/Everywhere Computing trend. After years of startups focusing on software they are now developing devices to run it on. Many of these devices are plastic boxes with batteries powering sensing and networking technology. The rise of additive manufacturing and 3D printing helps lower the barrier of entry, but designing and getting these devices to market is much more complicated than uploading an app. There are financial, physical, chemical, mechanical, electrical, logistical, legal and retail hurdles to overcome. Startups turn to experienced manufacturing contractors to get them through the prototyping and early manufacturing process. While making something in China seems like a foregone conclusion, there are capable contract manufacturing contractors in Silicon Valley who can work closely and quickly with a startup to get them to customers without a copy going out the back door. Making hardware is hard, but for a growing number if startups it is worth the risk.

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Copyright 2013 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Jul. 23, 2013 AAMA Gavin Ni China VC And PE

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On July 23, 2013 in Santa Clara at Silicon Valley Bank, the AAMA hosted Gavin Ni’s presentation “Is Venture Capital and Private Equity still a ‘Fashion’ Business in China?”  Catharina Min, Managing Partner at ReedSmith moderated panelists Gavin Ni, CEO and Founder of Zero2IPO, Andy Tsao, Managing Director of Silicon Valley Bank, Jay Yan, Partner at ReedSmith, Raymond Yang, Co-Founder and Managing Director of WestSummit Capital. They talked about the current state and future trends of cross border investment between China and the United States. Also attending were China’s leading fund executives to meet with members of the Tsinghua University China Entrepreneurs Training Camp in Silicon Valley.

Min Catharina Ni Gavin Tsao Andy 1 Yan Jay Yang Raymond

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Copyright 2013 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Sep. 24, 2012 SVC-W Hainan IT Development

On Monday, Sept 24, 2012, in Mountain View at Fenwick & West LLP, SVC-W held a cocktail party for the Hainan Province Governor. The island of Hainan is not only a tourist destination, but also a place for IT development as well. The speakers were:

  • Laurel Barsotti, Business Development Manager at City and County of San Francisco
  • Shangqing Ding, Director of the Department of Industry and Information Technology, Hainan Province, China
  • Guoliang Li, Deputy Governor of the Hainan Province, China
  • Man Lin, General Manager, HaiNan HengXin Telecom Engineering Co.Ltd
  • Peng Lu, Chairman, Sanya Huike International Information Industry Park Co.Ltd
  • Keqiang Wang, Deputy Director, Department of Commerce, Hainan Province, China
  • Chunzhi Yang, GM, Hainan Ecological Software Park Investment Co.Ltd

Note: Ridgefield WA?

Copyright 2012 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Dec. 6, 2011 SVForum Solar Trade War China

On Tuesday, December 6, 2011 in San Francisco at Nixon Peabody, SVForum held a Clean Tech Breakfast on “Solar Energy: Competition from China and the Solyndra Aftermath.” Mavis L. Yee of Nixon Peabody moderated panelists Troy Dalbey of Upsolar, Mark Domine of Enfinity , Kevin Gibson of Solaria, Mark Perutz of DBL Investors and Eric Wesoff of Greentech Media.

China now controls two thirds of the $39 billion photovoltaic (PV) solar production global market. China’s flood of cheap subsidized solar materials is at the expense of US manufacturers like Solyndra, despite substantial federal, state and local support. People in the solar industry are now worried that a trade war may break out just as the industry becomes competitive with old energy. Experts think that the money can be made in adding value to the basic systems with installation, monitoring and service. In other words, don’t try to make money from making an iPhone but from the apps.

Greg Smestad Ph.D., Associate Editor of Solar Energy Materials and Solar Cells was on hand with a number of links to detailed stories on the state of the solar industry. There was so much information it will have to be a separate posting.

Copyright 2011 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Mar. 22, 2011 SDF Electric Cars

On March 22, 2011 in San Francisco at Nixon Peabody, SDForum held a Clean Tech Breakfast on “Electric Vehicles – What’s Under the Hood?” Robert Ebe of Nixon Peabody moderated panelists Matt Boyle of Sevcon, Rob Ferber of ElectronVault, Gerd Goette of Siemens, Mark Platshon of VantagePoint and Ryan Popple of Kleiner Perkins (KPCB).

Under the hood, electric vehicles can be simpler than internal combustion engines. Their basic components are motors,  controllers (inverters), gauges, steering, DC converters, batteries, chargers, and accelerators.

The principles and design of the electric motor were worked out over a hundred and fifty years ago. They are ninety percent efficient and well understood. Batteries, on the other hand, tend to lose their energy density over time. Their efficiencies continue to improve with better materials and software but only with high oil prices are they competitive. Plan for evolution rather than revolution. If you can design your vehicle to be agnostic about what kind of battery it uses, it can extend its lifetime flexibility.

As fuel prices rise in America, electric cars like the Tesla, Chevy Volt and the Nissan Leaf are becoming available. But the most popular electric vehicle in China is not a car but a scooter. People in developing countries do not have to worry as much about older, existing, competing, subsidized legacy infrastructure. The new large cities cannot support the old ways. People just start buying small electric vehicles and are gradually creating a transportation infrastructure around it. Regardless of what other resources a country may have, any country that can generate electricity can build and drive a fleet of electric vehicles. Opportunities for investment and jobs are not only in the building of batteries but recycling them. Technology developed in the West will be scaled for manufacturing in the East and will create a global infrastructure of mass marketed vehicles.

In the West, the question is whether they will be adopted first by consumers or as fleet vehicles. Some believe that government incentives will drive purchasing decisions. Investors should not depend on constantly changing government policies. Your business model should be based on real market costs and demand.

New technology creates new headaches. One concern is about safety for first responders to an accident. How do you extract a person from a vehicle with a damaged and possibly ungrounded power supply? Another caveat is compressed natural gas (CNG). If it becomes cheaper than oil, it may be adapted for large trucks. The details will have to be worked out.

Copyright 2011 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Dec. 20, 2010 The New Yorker

On Dec. 20, 2010 The New Yorker’s James Surowiecki wrote “Groupon Clipping” about Internet companies trying remain relevant or part of the next big thing like Google trying to buy Groupon.

Michael Specter wrote “The Doomsday Strain” about scientist Nathan Wolfe’s searching the world for new diseases and cures.

David Owen wrote “The Efficiency Dilemma” about US Secretary of Energy Steven Chu and the idea that increasing energy efficiency might mean we just use more energy.

Pankaj Mishra wrote “Staying Power” about Mao Zedong’s rise in China.

Caleb Crain wrote “Tea And Antipathy” about the real Boston Tea Party and the American Revolution.

Copyright 2010 DJ Cline All rights reserved.

Dec. 1, 2008 SDF China Wuxi

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On December 1, 2008 at the Hyatt Regency in Santa Clara, SDForum with the CSPA, Global Sourcing Alliance and Municipality of Wuxi, China presented “A Symposium on Software and Outsourcing”. Top government officials and executives were on hand to talk about China’s IT outsourcing market and investment opportunities. Continue reading Dec. 1, 2008 SDF China Wuxi