Sep 23, 2020

Tesla reveals new battery tech but falls short of hype

Electric vehicles
autonomous driving
William Smith
2 min
Tesla has used the occasion of its Battery Day event for a raft of announcements around the crucial electric vehicle technology
Tesla has used the occasion of its Battery Day event for a raft of announcements around the crucial electric vehicle technology...

Tesla has used the occasion of its Battery Day event for a raft of announcements around the crucial electric vehicle technology.

Among the standout announcements was that Tesla plans to manufacture its own so-called “tabless” batteries for improved range and power, with promises of six times more power and 16% more range.

The company also plans to divest from cobalt inside its batteries, with the element, crucial to battery manufacture, generally being mined in startlingly poor conditions for workers. A timeline, however, was not given.

The final standout was Tesla’s plan to produce an electric vehicle that cost $25,000, in the hopes of a more accessible price driving wider adoption.

The live presentation was attended by 240 shareholders sitting in Tesla Model 3 vehicles.

The much hyped event perhaps led to unrealistic expectations from investors, with $50bn being wiped off its stock market value in the aftermath. Indeed, Musk used a tweet to seemingly tamper expectations prior to the event, saying: “Important note about Tesla Battery Day unveil tomorrow. This affects long-term production, especially Semi, Cybertruck & Roadster, but what we announce will not reach serious high-volume production until 2022.”

The company nevertheless remains valued at over $400bn, being the world’s most valuable automotive manufacturer despite producing a comparatively paltry number of vehicles.

Tesla has undoubtedly been one of the largest beneficiaries of the booming US stock market, buoyed in part by many amateur investors who consider themselves fans of Elon Musk and his ambitions with Tesla and a suite of other companies including SpaceX and The Boring Company.

Indeed, the company recently split its stock on a five-for-one basis, meaning individual shares were more accessible for smaller investors. The measure reduced Tesla’s shares from $2,000 per unit to $500.

Tesla’s dominance highlights the increased importance of technology to the automotive industry, with the announced battery tech dovetailing with the automated driving features essentially all manufacturers are racing to develop.

(Image: Tesla)

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Jun 18, 2021

Microsoft Power BI: Enabling data culture through innovation

3 min
A peek into Microsoft Power BI’s roadmap revealing exciting capabilities like real-time analytics and organisational goals tracking

Businesses using Microsoft’s cloud services may be familiar with Power BI –  a business analytics service that aims to provide interactive visualizations and business intelligence capabilities with a simple experience helping end users create their own reports and dashboards. Power BI is part of the Power Platform which is a set of low-code tools consisting of business intelligence, app development, bot development and process automation applications. In a world where everything is constantly changing, the Power Platform enables subject matter experts to keep up with business needs.

Today, data comes not just from transactional systems of record, but from the real world – whether it is the devices people use, to everyday human interaction. Power BI’s mission is to make access to data paramount to every business operation through its solutions and empowers individuals, teams and organizations to drive a data culture. This sentiment is further established by Arun Ulagarathchagan, Corporate Vice President of the Power BI team, adding “Our vision here in the Power BI team is to help you drive a data culture where everyone can make every decision with data.” So what can organisations expect to see next in the pipeline? Microsoft is bringing performance management to Power BI for the first time. Organisations strive to achieve certain goals, and today, goals are largely data-driven. Power BI helps make those goals more accessible and personalized in existing workflows. This means that since many teams’ data, analytics and business logic is already reported in Power BI, they can now instantly connect it to their personal/department goals. It is also worth noting that Goals is natively integrated into the Microsoft Teams experience. The goals algorithm is also AI powered, so organisations can better understand how they’re doing and where are the opportunities for improvement. Finally, Microsoft is working towards integrating it with Power Automate, so organisations can define business processes that get automatically triggered as the goals change status. Goals will soon be available as a mobile experience too, so teams can stay up to date and take action in real-time. On that note, another major announcement from Microsoft features real-time analytics. Today, data is captured from everywhere and synthesizing it in real-time allows for maximum impact. Power BI has been a pioneer in real time analytics from the start with a simple vision – that the distinctions between batch, real time, and streaming data today will disappear over time. Power BI will launch Streaming Data Flows soon, allowing every business a simple low-code way to work with real-time data.

Amir Netz, CTO Power BI concludes “Our vision is to empower everyone in the world with data, and not just the people sitting in offices, but people who are working in the real world, people who are moving things, creating things, producing things with their hands. And for this, we have to think again about how we deliver data to help them make better decision


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