AgXeed + more news

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Claas acquires share in Dutch robot manufacturer | Irish Farmers Journal – Claas has acquired a minority shareholding in Dutch start-up AgXeed B.V, with the aim of co-operating on the development and commercialisation of autonomous agricultural machines. AgXeed makes robot tracked tractors that look suspiciously like vehicles from the first Terminator movie. Automation like AgXeed is going to become more important in agriculture at labour moves to the cities and farming consolidates. You can see how unskilled factory work is also having to look at automation in the below piece from the South China Morning Post. AgXeed is the flip side of the coin to industrial robotics.

As China’s working population falls, factories turn to machines to pick up the slack | South China Morning Post – makes a lot of sense for a brand like Midea who needs less precision than say a smartphone assembly line


What’s driving the Chinese boom in cosmetics for children? | Vogue BusinessIn China, it’s more socially acceptable these days to show individual identity in looks. Parents born in the 1980s or 1990s are less likely to curb their daughters’ interest in beauty products and may even encourage it. The current boom is certainly one to watch: according to data from Kaola, in May 2020, sales in China of children’s cosmetics were up by more than 1,200 per cent year-on-year. Disney’s sales alone were up by 100 per cent over the same period. 

In China, children’s cosmetics are defined as those for children aged 12 and under. On e-commerce platforms, a quick search for children’s cosmetics brings up dozens of brands and thousands of products, with prices ranging widely. Products are typically sold in sets, including colourful eye shadows, blush, lip gloss, nail polish, compact powder and makeup brushes

Consumer behaviour

What Gen Z Really Think And Why You Should Care – GWI – at least the author was thinking about life stages when they wrote this copy


Hydrogen plant planned for Cork but viable market yet to emerge 26 May 2021 | The Irish Farmers Journal – but if there isn’t hydrogen production, there won’t be hydrogen infrastructure and marketplace.

Hong Kong

EXCLUSIVE Hong Kong threatens Lai’s bankers with jail if they deal in his accounts | Reuters – “We can now see that any banking relationship you have centred on Hong Kong makes you vulnerable under the national security law – that is going to be a big wake-up call for the wealth management industry here, and their rich clients,

China’s Communist Party chips away at Hong Kong business houses | The EconomistExpropriations may violate local law. But laws can be changed, as the imposition of new security and electoral rules show. Such an outcome looks “all too believable”, says Mr Blennerhassett. The tycoons thought “they didn’t have to do anything as long as they didn’t question Beijing”, says Joseph Fan of Chinese University of Hong Kong. Now the Communist Party will not even settle for overt expressions of fealty. It appears intent on extracting value, too. – not terribly surprising. The hubris of Hong Kong business people is surprising, even to someone like me


British Business in China: Position Paper – British Chamber of Commerce in China | Beijing – Chinese data protection rules a key issue


Can Gucci Sell High-End Watches To China? | Jing Daily – “Gucci’s high-priced watches are lacking legitimacy. Real watch collectors will not buy,” Müller concludes. In fact, the expansion into high-end watches may not help Gucci attract new clientele but will undoubtedly enhance the Italian maison’s prestige. As the luxury entry barrier lowers, the brand is required to expand in the high-end sphere to retain its exclusivity and appeal to local high net worth buyers


The Test Screening That Almost Killed Fast Times at Ridgemont High | Slate – such a great interview, but would you have a cultural moment like that now; or would it be over like yesterday’s news or a TikTok meme?


China’s Hottest Livestream Trend: FraudThe episode was a disaster for Li. Her company had paid 200,000 yuan ($31,000) upfront just to secure a spot on the influencer’s show. It had also stocked over 4,000 boxes of shakes, anticipating a sales bonanza. But in the end, they hadn’t earned a single yuan. “Apart from the financial losses, we felt humiliated,” says Li. “All the other employees at the company were whispering that our team was totally fooled.” – ad fraud is universal but this one seems to be particularly shocking


iFixit tells the sad story of how Samsung “ruined” its upcycling program | Ars Technica – “Samsung, like every manufacturer, should set their old phones free. Open up their bootloaders. Let people use their cameras, sensors, antennas, and screens for all kinds of purposes, using whatever software people can dream up. The world needs fun, exciting, and money-saving ways to reuse older phones, not a second-rate tie-in to yet another branded internet-of-things ecosystem.

Web of no web

Europe looks to the end of the mobile phone | EE News EuropeThe aim is AR glasses that are wearable all day and weigh less than 60g with a 500mW power consumption. “We can achieve that this year with 1000nits for outdoor brightness, compared to 500nits that needs darkened lenses, and a 30 to 50 degree field of view (FoV) is enough,” he said

In the end there is a tradeoff in power consumption. The way you build the relay optics is where you lose the field of view. Increasing the field of view means the energy is relayed into the comb of the lenses so the limitation is on the capabilty of the waveguide to have a good colour uniformity across the field of view, and we are working with waveguide makers to get to 60 to 70deg. Today Hololens has 55 degree field of view for example but the military were asking for 85 degrees.” – more related content here.

US-China tech war: China’s GPS rival BeiDou poised to support industry worth US$156 billion by 2025 | South China Morning Post