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Let’s talk about what the UK bike bubble over a century ago has in common with the current epidemic of non-alternative tokens, tech starters and electric vehicle companies.

The gold rush of technology has taken more than a decade, but in some corners it doesn’t make any sense. When the buzz diminishes, people can lose their fortune. But in summary, tech mania brings some good stuff. As my colleague Erin Griffith said: the bubbles are cluttered, but they lead to progress.

I recently spoke to William Quinn, a lecturer at Queen’s University Belfast and co-author of Boom and Bust. This is the history of bubbles such as the crash of the US stock market in 1929 and the financial crisis more than 10 years ago.

This book identifies three fundamental conditions that exist in the bubble. Borrowing money is cheap or people are saving a lot of money. Buying and selling assets will be easier, as is happening now with stock trading apps including Robin Hood. And the idea is that the price of an asset can only go up.

All of these conditions currently exist, as Griffith recently wrote in a hilarious and useful article. As a result, there have been repeated spectacular IPOs, including a surge in meme stocks such as GameStop, hype about NFTs, and what left Airbnbs CEO silent.

But Quinn also told me that tech bubbles are importantly different from other business cycles. For one thing, they don’t tend to ruin the world. He said he wasn’t worried that NFTs would cause the next financial crisis and so on.

Unlike the housing market bubble, the technology bubble is usually inflated by borrowing, which can cause a cascading effect. Speculative technology is also often somewhat separated from other economies.

And Quinn said that when the tech bubble burst, something positive could be left behind. Please enter a bubble.

The invention of the safety bike in the late 1800s was a revelation, and the basic design is still alive today. You might not think of a bicycle as a technology, but it was an important innovation for relatively reliable and affordable transportation.

It also launched a British bike maker enthusiast who went public, recorded a surge in stock prices, and then collapsed. According to Quinn, what was left behind was, in some cases, the people and businesses that pioneered new innovations in cars, motorcycles and road tires. Some of the bike pioneers are still around.

Like the bicycle bubble, the dot-com bubble in the United States in the late 1990s triggered good things. Companies, including Amazon, survived and prospered. Bankrupt telecommunications companies have left behind a cheap and convenient internet pipeline that enables online explosions.

Nowadays, with the collapse of cryptocurrencies a few years ago, many people are interested in the benefits of promising underlying technologies such as blockchain.

Bubble Bobble can be distracting, Griffith said, but added that many people in technology and finance see enthusiasts and enthusiasts driving attention, excitement, enthusiasm, and talent to new things. It was.

I don’t want to ignore the harm of tech bust. When the bubble bursts, people lose their jobs and, in some cases, all their savings. Mr Quinn said regulators believe that more should be done to prevent advertisers from tricking people into leaving with millions of people. Griffith said he was worried that people involved in the tech boom might be confused.

Quinn said he believes that the bubbles, which were relatively rare in the 1920s and 1980s, are now occurring more often. Money and information move quickly around the world and inspire enthusiasts. Bubbles can be modern life fixtures with all the potential harm and benefits that come with them.

This week’s tips

How to get cheap airfares

Brian X. Chen, a consumer technology columnist at The New York Times, will teach you how to save on airfares with your favorite ticket price forecasting app to prepare for a safe flight.

If you’re like me and want to go somewhere, it may be a great time to start looking for travel deals, even if you don’t plan to travel until winter because of a pandemic.

There is a nifty app that uses algorithms to predict when airfares will drop. Ive has won some notable deals and saved hundreds of dollars on flights to Hawaii, New York and Taiwan. These algorithms can be a bit unreliable in these unpredictable years, but they are still worth checking out.

My favorite app for saving flights is Hopper. With the free iOS and Android apps, you can sign up for price alert tracking that recommends buying plane tickets now or waiting for destination prices to drop. (Hopper also tracks hotel and car rental prices, but doesn’t use these features.)

Here’s how to use the hopper app.

Please select your preferred travel date. The hopper displays a color-coded calendar. Green dates indicate the least expensive days to fly, and red indicates the highest prices. You can choose to display only the ticket price for direct flights.

Sit down and wait for advice: When you select a travel date, Hopper will send you a notification suggesting whether to buy your ticket now or wait for the price to drop. I tend to look at hopper flight alerts and buy tickets directly from the airline.

(Note that if a large number of flights were canceled during the pandemic, Hopper was overwhelmed by complaints from people who booked tickets from the app and struggled to get help.)

Before going

Opposition to Amazon’s enthusiasm for control: Companies need to reduce labor costs and increase productivity. That’s why Amazon measures every moment of a worker’s presence, writes my colleague David Stritefeld. The opposition to Amazon’s desire for control is reflected in tweets about peaceful warehouse workers, parliamentary oversight, labor regulatory attention, and restroom breaks.

The app filter may be a real social experiment on a girl. MIT Technology Review looks at the risks of app features that make people look beautiful by erasing scratches, changing eye color, and changing face and body colors. Some of these filters can be playful and helpful, but some researchers and teens are worried that it will distort the self-image of women and girls.

If Facebook is a Local News Channel: A Facebook group specializing in local information in and around Beaver County, Pennsylvania, helps spread news about potholes, business closures, and shoplifting. But NBC News wrote that police had to intervene to dispel exaggerations and falsehoods within the group.

Embrace this

Laburnford Wimberley, an 82-year-old woman from Tulsa, Oklahoma, is perfect for worship in a virtual church every Sunday. Her selfie on Facebook in her colorful outfits (including hats!) Made her a star.

We want to hear from you. What do you think of this newsletter and what else do you want us to explore? Please contact us at [email protected]

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