Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I'm Ending the Two Blog Experiment

I wanted to have two blogs to prevent my other one, Technology and the City, from getting too broad, but have quickly found it's easier to just to keep everything in one place. You can continue to read posts on the Post-Technology Economy over there.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Robotics Technology Park Under Development in Decatur, AL

Just a few miles from the NASA facility in Huntsville, the state of Alabama is developing a robotics research and technology center. NASA and the U.S. Missile Command will the first users, but it will also provide services for commercial customers.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Ann Arbor SPARK Joins New SE Michigan Econ Dev Push

It's 2010. Why does Michigan have a "New Economy Initiative"? I think someone needs to tell the econ dev people in Michigan that the tech bubble burst 10 years ago.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Skin Care Specialists Now a Top 10 Growth Profession

Mundane personal service jobs are becoming some of the fastest growing professions. Here and in my other blog, I've written about the "cool" and "creative" jobs defining the future, such as nail care, social work, and teaching. Employment in these sectors correlates more strongly to having a vagina than to having an advanced degree, but they are way too boring for any urban pundit to start writing about.

While I don't think its author is about to do a book tour, so you won't see its findings on television or in a promotional poster at Barnes & Noble, the Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook Handbook has some interesting findings. It ranks the top 10 growth professions for the next 8 years, and coming in at #8 - skin care specialist. Yes, for all the hype about "creative classes", "knowledge workers", and other sorts of nonsense, skin care is now a leading growth profession.

In addition to skin care, athletic trainer makes the list, as does home health care aide. Even the engineering jobs are mostly angled towards people and medicine, as opposed to faster computers or communications. Only 2 of the top 10 professions have anything to do with finance or IT.

Now here's what's also interesting - very few of these jobs get done by people who work for publicly traded companies. They're typically done by not-for-profits, government agencies, or small businesses. Those strip mall manicurists, athletic trainers, and physicians assistants typically work for themselves or an owner they know personally, not a publicly-traded company - an important implication for investors.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Moneyweek: How to Profit as the Machines Take Over

Interesting anecdote about a British hospital where robots will be doing some of the cleaning and dispensing pills. They cite a study claiming professional service robots will grow 80% from 2009 to 2012, but even at that seemingly high rate, we're still not cracking 25% per year.

Friday, June 18, 2010

200,000 Robots in U.S. Factories Now

And robot sales are picking up according to the Robotics Industry Association. I also like how they've rebranded their annual conference "Automate", much better than the "International Robots, Vision & Motion Control Show"

Pennsylvania Launches New Site Location Website

Was just playing around with the site, not a bad way to get commercial real estate information.