The BYTE [8/21]


Welcome to the BYTE, where we serve up the latest home and tech news from the last week for you to sink your teeth into.

This week we’re taking a BYTE out of current housing numbers, AI, construction productivity, an update in search, and the American work force. Dig in!


Starting and Slowing
Compared to last year the supply of starter homes is declining by 17%. In other news, resale homes are starting to slowly starting to catch up to new homes in price.

What Does It All Mean?
Starter home (under $200,000) inventory has been falling year-over-year 3X faster than larger homes. Couple this with the demand for starter homes being at a nearly record high and you have everyone wondering, how low can the inventory go? Demand is showing no signs of slowing down, so we’ll just have to nervously watch this dangerous game of limbo.

Not All Fun And Games

A-I’m Afraid
Artificial intelligence has been getting a lot of press now-a-days, whether it is beating a master at his own game, increasing national productivity, or creating its own language. This week’s AI news is a little bit darker. Elon Musk and 116 other AI experts have called upon the UN to ban AI from being used in weapons, specifically killer robots. This comes before a meeting of 123 nations are having to talk about how to address AI in the human world. Elon and crew are worried about a Terminator scale war in the very near future. “This is not a hypothetical scenario, but a very real, very pressing concern which needs immediate action.”

Take Notes

Value Added
The construction industry as a whole is struggling to keep up with average value-added per hour, only growing around a quarter of the rate that manufacturing has since 1995. There are several factors at play here. One, construction is a built of a lot of small firms, not giving them the cushion other industries have during economic downturns. Because of that, there is less capital to invest in emerging technology to make things more efficient. Some say if government, which accounts for a big portion of sales, were to spread their work out it would make for more consistent income and less seasonal busy times.

Minor Mobile Changes
Google has announced that they are adding a new feature to mobile search, 6 second video previews. This will help allow mobile viewers to find exactly the video they want without having to click through several videos. It will be interesting to see how or if this changes viewing patterns on mobile because there will be less perusing. It also could change the way people upload and cut their videos because Google’s AI is going to analyze the video to pick the most interesting 6 seconds.

Participation Is Up Thanks To…
…Women. Women are returning to the workforce in big numbers this year. The number of women looking for a job or are employed is at a 7 year high. This uptick has led to the lowest margin between men and women in the workforce since 1948. But overall participation in the workforce is nearing the lowest since the 70s.

Totally Unrelated

The Perfect Form Of Advertising
In case you were thinking about having someone out on the street to pull them into your homes or communities, look no further we found the perfect good boy for the job.

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