Capstak's Weekly Wrap Up | February 24

by Capstak


1) Intuition Is the Highest Form of Intelligence | Forbes

In commercial real estate being able to read the market by “going with your gut” is an invaluable talent. Gerd Gigerenzer, author of Gut Feelings: The Intelligence of the Unconscious, argues that, “Intuition is less about suddenly "knowing" the right answer and more about instinctively understanding what information is unimportant and can thus be discarded.” From this, the author of the article, Bruce Kasanof, postulates that people with more intuition in things, have more overall intelligence. Kasanof does add one caveat saying, “You might say that I'm a believer in the power of disciplined intuition. Do your legwork, use your brain, share logical arguments, and I'll trust and respect your intuitive powers.”

2) An AI Hedge Fund Created a New Currency to Make Wall Street Work Like Open Source | Wired

The last article focused on the intuitive mind, while this piece shows the power of the rational mind. This week a new breed of hedge fund, Numerai, started to issue a new digital currency, aimed at getting data scientists to compete to create the best trading algorithms—and win bitcoin for their efforts.

The higher the scientists sit on the leaderboard, the more digital tokens they receive. If their trades succeed, they get their tokens back along with a bitcoin payment. Where this turns Wall Street on its head is, this fund encourages collaboration. “It’s a tricky but ingenious logic: Everyone betting Numeraire has an incentive to get everyone else to build the best models possible, because the more the fund grows, the bigger the dividends for all.”

3) Economy Watch: Robust Demand for U.S. Data Centers | Commercial Property Executive

As hedge funds, and everything else for that matter, continue to rely more on data, it becomes increasingly important to have a place to store that data. Which, might explain the $1.8 billion in data center asset sales in 2016. The demand for data centers appears to be picking up steam, as “More speculative data center capacity is scheduled for delivery in 2017 than in each of the past several years. The increase in capacity should facilitate increased leasing activity in supply-constrained markets.” Looks like it was good timing on Switch’s part.


4) The Cities of the Future Are Smart, Green, Connected Innovation Hubs | Singularity Hub

Looking a bit farther into the future, or maybe not, technologies continue to be integrated into every aspect of our day-to-day lives, and will eventually transform our cities. The Internet of Things will create city-wide systems to gather data from objects like trash cans, lights and even entire buildings. The cost of solar panels is expected to fall by 10 percent every year, and many cities are embracing green technology to create sustainable infrastructure, cleaner transportation and integrate with more renewable energy sources.


5) New York City's Most Iconic Hotel is Closing Indefinitely this Month — Take a Look Back at its Star-Studded Past | Business Insider

New York City's Waldorf Astoria is a story of the future meeting the past. The Waldorf announced it would be closing indefinitely this month for a major overhaul. In 2016 the hotel celebrated it 85th birthday, and has hosted every US president since Herbert Hoover, and Hollywood starts such as Sophia Loren, Elizabeth Taylor, and Frank Sinatra. During the overhaul, the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission will work to preserve parts of the interior, but, “The future of the hotel and towers are uncertain.”

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