March 26, 2019

Bill Gates On the Future

“Every year, Bill and Melinda Gates write a letter describing what they see in their philanthropic efforts around the world — the opportunities, the challenges, and the things that need more attention. (For 2015’s letter, Bill guest-edited The Verge.) This year, that letter is focused on things that have surprised the pair; even as the news is dominated by headlines of scandal and conflict, Bill and Melinda are focused on the many areas around the world in which innovation is driving surprising positive change. “Using innovation to improve equity is what brings it all together,” Bill says.

Bill came on The Vergecast to talk about the letter, his work as a philanthropist, and how he and Melinda choose which initiatives to focus on with their foundation’s impressive team and enormous resources. It was a wide-ranging conversation, matching the letter itself: we touched on everything from measuring the contributions of women to data privacy to the rise of nationalism, and landed on a discussion of just how we should design a tax system around billionaires. It was a pretty deep 33 minutes.

You can listen to the entire interview on The Vergecast, and read the full transcript below, which has been lightly edited for clarity.”

Read more

JJ Editor's Daily Picks

"THE CAPTURE of the last territory controlled by the Islamic State on Saturday was far from a final victory over the movement, as U.S. commanders and diplomats were careful to emphasize."

"How a Gay Teen, an Internet Nazi, and a Late-Night Rendezvous Turned to Tragedy. When self-loathing meets the new age of online extremism."

"Benjamin Netanyahu ignored the intelligence operations of Beijing and Moscow for too long. Now, the Israeli government is finally paying attention, but it could be too late."

"Former Nick Jr. kids are now reckoning with this all-grown-up intrepid explorer, whose obstacles are a lot bigger than Swiper the Fox. And that is a hard pill to swallow."

"At the end of last week, the three-month Treasury bills' yield rose above the yield for 10-year Treasuries for the first time since 2007, prompting warnings that the U.S. is headed for recession later this year or in early 2020."

"A team of researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and Technion-Israel Institute of Technology attempted to answer some questions about voting with the help of artificial intelligence (AI)."

"The experts I spoke with all said that the internet had changed the way conspiracies spread, but conspiracies, both dangerous and petty, have always been with us."

"Pop culture today is obsessed with the battle between good and evil. Traditional folktales never were. What changed?"

"Trustful parents allow their children as much freedom as reasonably possible to make their own decisions. They trust their children’s instincts, judgments, and ability to learn from mistakes."

"Arugulagate. In 2007, Barack Obama was in Iowa, speaking as a presidential hopeful to a group of farmers who were worried about the stagnation of their crop prices while America’s grocery bills continued to rise."

"To say that information exists in and of itself is akin to speaking of spin without the top, of ripples without water, of a dance without the dancer, or of the Cheshire Cat’s grin without the cat."

"Ted Cruz replaces the Democrats’ muddled manifesto with a clear and unequivocal exploration of the hatred of Jews and its particular evils."