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What’s better to do at this time than to indulge in some predictions for 2023? This morning, I published a story in MIT Technology Review’s “What’s Next in Tech” series, looking at what will happen in the global semiconductor industry this year.

To give you a brief overview, I was told by many experts that the already-stressed global chips supply chain will be challenged even more by geopolitics in 2023.

Over much of 2022, the US started to take steps to freeze China out of the industry—even forming an alliance with the Netherlands and Japan to restrict chip exports to the country. The measures have pushed the once market-driven business to come up with contingency plans to survive the cold-war-like environment—like diversifying from the Chinese supply chain and building factories elsewhere. We may see more similar plans announced in the next year. And at the same time, the US government’s punitive restrictions will start to be enforced and industrial subsidies for domestic chip makers will start to be doled out, meaning new companies may end up on top while others may get penalized for still selling to China.

To learn more about how the US, China, Taiwan, and Europe may navigate the industry this year, read the full article here.

ButI also want to highlight something that didn’t make it into the story—a rather unintended outcome of the chip tech blockade. While the high-end sector of China’s chip industry suffers, the country may take a bigger role in manufacturing older-generation chips that are still widely used in everyday life.

That may sound counterintuitive. Weren’t the US restrictions last year meant to severely hurt China’s semiconductor industry?

Yes, but the US government has been intentional about limiting the impact to advanced chips. For example, in the realm of logic chips—those that perform tasks, as opposed to storing data—the US rules only limit China’s ability to produce chips with 14-nanometer nodes or better, which is basically the chip-making technology introduced in the last eight years. The restrictions don’t apply to producing chips with older technologies.

The consideration here is that older chips are widely used in electronics, cars, and other ordinary objects. If the US were to craft a restriction so wide that it destroyed China’s entire electronic manufacturing industry, it would surely agitate the Chinese government enough to retaliate in ways that would hurt the US. “If you want to piss somebody off, push them into a corner and give them no way out. Then they’ll come and punch you really hard,” says Woz Ahmed, a UK-based consultant and former chip industry executive.

Instead, the idea is to inflict pain only in selective areas, like the most advanced technologies that may power China’s supercomputers, artificial intelligence, and advanced weapons.

“[US] policies have a very limited immediate impact on the Chinese domestic chip industry because very few Chinese companies have achieved advanced processes, except HiSilicon,” says He Hui, a research director at consulting firm Omdia who focuses on China’s semiconductor market. “But HiSilicon was already [placed on the blacklist] three years ago.”

And lower-end, legacy chips are also the subsector where China already has a significant advantage. We are not talking about chips used in powering the artificial intelligence of a self-driving car, but the chips that control a specific part, like airbags. As the technology of the Internet of Things rapidly develops, it still requires many small chips that don’t need to be so advanced. 

“That stuff is still going to be made in China, at least based on the current settings that the Biden administration has conveyed. So that obviously leaves a big incentive and a big market for foreign companies—European, Japanese, and South Korean—to continue working with the Chinese,” says John Lee, the director of East West Futures Consulting who researches the global impacts of China’s tech industries.

Part of the reason China maintains an advantage here is that in a market of mature, lower-end technologies, price is the most important thing. And China has been historically great at low-cost mass production, thanks to low labor costs and generous industrial subsidies from the government.

A future where China fully dominates in low-end chips has already spooked some Western observers. A report published in Lawfare calls this possibility “a huge supply chain vulnerability.” “The Chinese could just flood the market with these technologies. Normal companies can’t compete, because they can’t make money at those levels,” Dan Hutcheson, an economist at research firm TechInsights, told Reuters.


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By: Zeyi Yang
Title: Chinese chips will keep powering your everyday life
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Published Date: Wed, 04 Jan 2023 11:00:00 +0000


EXIF Picks: Rad Relics from Mecum’s John Parham Collection



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Vincent Black Shadow Drag Bike

It’s not everyday that you can bid on museum-caliber bikes, and Mecum’s upcoming auction at the National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa, Iowa, is full of heavy hitters. The collection hits the market from the estate of John Parham, who founded J&P Cycles with his wife Jill in 1979. Having amassing one of the best private motorcycle collections in the country, John unfortunately passed away in 2017, and 300 of his bikes will be finding new homes.

With everything from road-racing Harleys, hill climb bikes and trick European racers in the collection, there’s plenty to see. Mecum is hosting the sale September 6th through the 9th, and if you’re in the midwest, do us a favor and bring one of the following bikes home—preferably the XRTT.

Harley-Davidson XRTT 750

1971 Harley-Davidson XRTT The XRTT 750 is the most beautiful road-going Harley ever built, that’s a scientific fact. Okay, it’s more like an educated opinion backed by sources, but I welcome your challenges in the comment section. A road-racing version of the wildly successful XR750 flat tracker, the XRTT is a stunning, purpose-built piece of Milwaukee iron.

Harley’s KR750 was a dominant force in flat track racing, so why wouldn’t it work on pavement? Back in the 1960s, you could modify your KR for asphalt through HD’s parts catalog, or buy a factory-built KRTT and go racing in AMA Class C.

Harley-Davidson XRTT 750Read More


By: Dean Larson
Title: EXIF Picks: Rad Relics from Mecum’s John Parham Collection
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Published Date: Sat, 10 Jun 2023 17:00:43 +0000

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LISTEN: Thylacine’s “Polar” Receives Electrifying Remix Courtesy of Rising Producer Fekjá



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With a pulsating rhythm section and captivating synthesized melodies that quickly set it apart from the original release, rising German producer Fekjá has masterfully re-imagined Thylacine’s mezmorizing piece, “Polar,” to give it a stunning makeover tailored for the dance floor. Retaining the original version’s majestic emotion, the remix adds a crisp sonic edge through its ethereal and weightless elements, complemented by a subtle yet powerful synth bassline. Fejká’s shimmering new rendition stands as a testament to Thylacine’s signature style, where instrumental music remarkably conveys and evokes profound emotions and sensations. Hear what we mean by streaming the track below and let us know your thoughts in the comments section as well.

Thylacine – Polar (Fejká Remix) | Stream

‘LISTEN: Thylacine’s “Polar” Receives Electrifying Remix Courtesy of Rising Producer Fekjá

The post LISTEN: Thylacine’s “Polar” Receives Electrifying Remix Courtesy of Rising Producer Fekjá appeared first on Run The Trap: The Best EDM, Hip Hop & Trap Music.


By: Max Chung
Title: LISTEN: Thylacine’s “Polar” Receives Electrifying Remix Courtesy of Rising Producer Fekjá
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Published Date: Fri, 09 Jun 2023 20:09:15 +0000

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Did you miss our previous article…

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Investing in life sciences R&D by design



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Repairing a human liver using lab-grown cells. Using oral antibiotics to treat cystic fibrosis patients. Producing a single-dose treatment for breast cancer that’s proving highly effective. Predicting cancer with AI. All of this innovation came out of the UK life sciences industry.

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“It’s really the only industry that can both improve the health of your population and, therefore, their productivity,” says George Freeman, the UK’s Minister of State in the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology. Before being elected to Parliament, Freeman had a 15-year career in the life sciences sector. During that time, he worked with hospitals, clinical researchers, patient groups, and biomedical research companies to pioneer novel healthcare innovations.

Issues facing the global community have also spurred innovation in life sciences. Research in areas like agriculture technology and virology could help address some of the challenges wrought by climate change, which, as Freeman asserts, directly contribute to global instability. “The big flashpoints geopolitically in the next few years are probably going to be around water, food, pandemics, energy.”

And the industry has had other measurable results. Turnover in the UK’s life sciences industry jumped from £63.5 billion in 2016 to £94.2 billion in 2021.

Guided by proven expertise and academic excellence

With two of the top five universities for biological sciences in the world — the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford — the UK has a solid foundation for investment in life science innovation. “We have really deep science that you can’t buy off the shelf,” Freeman says.

As an example, Freeman points to the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, which has 24 Nobel prizes shared among its researchers and alumni in chemistry, and medicine and physiology. In the area of chemistry, the MRC Laboratory has more Nobel prizes than the entire country of France. “Those kinds of labs don’t just suddenly appear; they are incubated through layers of great science over years,” Freeman says.

The UK has also long been home to a strong pharmaceutical industry. For example, GlaxoSmithKline can trace its history in the UK back to 1715 and it now has nine manufacturing sites there. And AstraZeneca, which was formed after a merger between British and Swedish companies in 1999, bases its global headquarters in Cambridge. “We’ve had some big pharmaceutical companies here, and they’ve stayed here,” Freeman comments, pointing to the expertise this alone has incubated in the UK.

The National Health Service leads the way

Another factor that has enabled the UK to emerge as a leader in life sciences R&D is the National Health Service (NHS), one of the world’s first universal healthcare systems. Dr. Julia Wilson, associate director at the Wellcome Sanger Institute, says, “If you’re going to do longitudinal large-scale studies, following patients over time with repeated monitoring of diseases, risk factors or health outcomes, then you need a healthcare system that can enable you to access all the relevant information and recall patients.”

Such studies undertaken by the NHS have focused on issues like long covid and cognition in people over 50 years of age. “These studies are very much a partnership with the patient, scientists, and clinicians,” says Wilson. However, the institutions supporting life sciences R&D in the UK do not co-exist in a vacuum. There is “a good track record of collaboration across the different sectors,” Wilson says. “Within life sciences, there is porosity between academia, commercial, NHS, that really helps our R&D succeed and deliver.”

Deliberate collaboration for cutting-edge research

This collaboration is backed up by investment from both the government, as well as the charity sector. One such charitable global health foundation, the Wellcome Trust, announced in early 2022 that it would invest £16 billion in the UK over the next 10 years in four interlinked areas of life sciences: discovery research, infectious disease, mental health, and climate and health.

Although the UK excels in innovation for infectious diseases, immunology, and ageing, it is also a powerhouse in the area of genomics. The country’s

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By: MIT Technology Review Insights
Title: Investing in life sciences R&D by design
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Published Date: Thu, 23 Mar 2023 15:28:13 +0000

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