Tunnel Food, Work Audition, Podcast Pays 🎧

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Tunnel Food? Hell Yeah!

Underground food delivery? Sure, we already have subways, cafes, and homes underground these days, so why not get deliveries also going through tunnels? 

Humans have already saturated Earth above-ground, so now it’s time we start moving civilisation downstairs, isn’t it? 

Well, here’s one startup that’s already got on with it. Pipedream, a Texas-based startup, is revolutionizing restaurant pickups by moving them underground. Using a network of tunnels and robots, the company aims to connect entire cities in the future. And with $13 million in funding, it is also set to expand its automated restaurant pickup system.

How does it work? 

The core of Pipedream's technology is a tote system that carries various payloads, designed to handle over 95% of items ordered for delivery or pickup. An above-ground portal, equipped with temperature control, can manage orders weighing up to 40 pounds (18 kilograms), making it perfect for weekly groceries or large family meals. Their autonomous electric robots, capable of speeds over 40 mph (64 km/h), ensure swift deliveries.

The infrastructure comprises standard pipes forming a rail network with junctions allowing for seamless 90-degree turns, enhancing the robots' agility and navigation, as detailed on Pipedream's website. Once an order is placed, these robots autonomously travel through the tunnels, delivering food, packages, groceries, and household items.

What’s the benefit of this? 

Pipedream envisions creating sustainable, car-free communities where residents and businesses can receive fast deliveries directly to their doors. With projections indicating that 40% of U.S. traffic will be dedicated to delivery by 2030, Pipedream's goal is to redirect this traffic underground. Some more stats in the image above (from Pipedream website).

If successful, this system promises to minimize emissions and congestion while also sharing revenue with the city, addressing last-mile logistics challenges effectively.


The Weird Hiring Trend: An Audition

Maybe you remember a time when finding a new job was exciting. There was a sense of possibility, hope, and a fresh start in the air. Now, it feels like an impossible, hellish slog. Neo-hiring trends depend so much on technology that one might see it as a laziness tool for HR managers.

The trend we’re about to dissect today is most frequently called a “one-way video interview.” But we’re not a fan of coming up with new terms for things that already exist, so we’ll be referring to it as what it is: An audition tape.

Of course, requesting an audition tape from a career middle manager for a $90,000-a-year office job would sound ridiculous, so hiring committees decided to call it something else.

The format varies. You may be given a list of questions they want answered and then permitted to go freeform on them. It might be open-ended to begin with—essentially just selling yourself in the vaguest sense. Some might be question-and-answer style, in order, like the phone robot.

Does any of that sound great to you?

  • The new system dramatically increases the time commitment you require from a candidate before they ever truly interact with anyone at the organization.
  • Plus the concept of getting dressed up to sit in an empty room for thirty minutes and talk to yourself feels inherently weird.

But shockingly, some HR companies are estimating that 61% of employers are using this process to at least some extent.

But that’s just the surface of the issue.

On a more concerning level, this method can also be used for some mild to moderate discrimination based on appearance, age, race, gender, or whatever else, according to a recent report by an associate professor of law at the University of North Carolina’s Law School.

No more guessing about whether Janice is a name from the 1950s or not anymore — you can see it firsthand! Ageism in hiring has never been easier!

And for attractive people, getting through the door could be a cake walk.



Podcasting Pays

In 2023, U.S. podcast advertising revenue grew by 5%, reaching $1.9 billion. This marked a significant deceleration compared to the 26% increase the previous year. Despite this slowdown, there is optimism for a strong rebound.

A study by the IAB, in collaboration with PriceWaterhouseCoopers believes the slowdown in 2023 was largely due to a tough advertising market affecting various media sectors. While podcast ad growth lagged behind digital ads, the industry is looking ahead with anticipation. This downturn has prompted experts to delve deeper into future trends and potential changes.

Key Takeaways:

  • Experts anticipate a 12% growth in podcast advertising revenue in 2024, with projections indicating the market could reach nearly $2.6 billion by 2026.
  • The 2023 slowdown resulted from a challenging ad market impacting many media and entertainment sectors.
  • Podcast advertising revenue grew more slowly than overall digital advertising, which increased by 7.3% in 2023.


Shorts ⏳

🌿 The Bads of Weed - More people are using marijuana daily than drinking for the first time in the U.S.

🤕 Desperate Internship Days - 315K people applied for this year’s Goldman Sachs summer internship program — a record high… 0.9% got accepted — a record low

🧒 Filipino Cashiers - An NYC restaurant, Sansan Chicken, hired remote cashiers from Philippines to take orders. 

🥷 Fast and Furious Online - MIT students stole $25M in a mere 12 seconds by exploiting ETH blockchain bug. 

😆 Can chatbots help maximize happiness? See what happens when ChatGPT is fed two months worth of emotional data.


A World With No Entry Level Jobs
We were warned about this years ago. In 20 years from now, I see millions of 40 year old humans bereft of meaningful skills, limited IRL social skills or capabilities to survive in a competitive workforce.
 

Stash Recommends: Tools to Explore
Pexda: A product curation platform for dropshipping businesses, and it supplies you with 6 new products every day to try out in your store.

Worldox: A tool for businesses to manage their documents in a centralized repository that is accessible from any computer, tablet, or smartphone.

StackPath: The systematic build of StackPath CDN reached its popularity through its ability to provide the facility to compute with 60% less latency.
 
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