How a university dropout built a toy empire | BBC News

The BBC’s weekly The Boss series profiles different business leaders from around the world. This week we speak to Nick Mowbray, the co-founder and co-chief executive of toymaker Zuru.

A few years into trying to build a toy business in China, budding entrepreneur Nick Mowbray got a lucky break – a whiff of interest from Walmart.

The US retail giant wanted to visit Zuru’s showroom in Hong Kong. Nick quickly agreed, and promised to send the address. Now all he had to do was set-up a showroom.

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The 1 New Year’s Resolution You Should Immediately Break, According to 3 Nobel Prize-Winning Scientists |

A common New Year’s resolution is to “get up earlier.” The resolution is treated as a positive change in lifestyle, similar to “eat more healthy” and “get more exercise.” There is a huge difference, though. Eating healthier and exercising more frequently improve your health. Rising earlier than you’re already rising, by contrast, raises your risk of heart disease and early death.

The 2017 Nobel Prize for Medicine was awarded to three scientists who discovered the molecular mechanism inside the brain that determines one’s natural sleep schedule. This mechanism expresses itself according to your genetics. As a result, humans (like all animals that sleep) have a circadian rhythm that determines when your brain wants to sleep.

About 10 percent of humans (early birds) have a circadian rhythm that makes them want to rise before dawn; about 20 percent of humans (night owls) have a circadian rhythm that makes them want to wake long after sunrise. It has nothing to do with willpower or moral superiority; your genes tell you when you want to sleep.

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Will online privacy make a comeback in 2020? | TechCrunch

Last year was a landmark for online privacy in many ways, with something of a consensus emerging that consumers deserve protection from the companies that sell their attention and behavior for profit.

The debate now is largely around how to regulate platforms, not whether it needs to happen.

The consensus among key legislators acknowledges that privacy is not just of benefit to individuals but can be likened to public health; a level of protection afforded to each of us helps inoculate democratic societies from manipulation by vested and vicious interests.

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Please Stop Sending Terrifying Alerts to My Cell Phone | WIRED

Last month a police officer in Houston was run over and killed during a traffic stop. The suspect got away. The next day, millions of phones across Texas buzzed with news of the officer’s death after the state’s Department of Public Safety blasted out what’s known as a Blue Alert. This prompted considerable concern and confusion. A man in Odessa, some 500 miles away, spoke for many when he tweeted: “wtf is a blue alert?”

Blue Alerts are mass notifications, now used in 35 states, that are sent to mobile phones and flashed on electronic highway signs when a suspect on the loose is thought to be an “imminent and credible threat to law enforcement.” The hope is that pinging the public will lead to tips for the police, and then a speedier capture. It’s an idea that originated with the better-known Amber Alert program, named after a 9-year-old abductee from Arlington, Texas, who was murdered, which aims to help authorities recover kidnapped children. Along with Blue and Amber alerts, there are Silver Alerts, issued for elderly people who are lost and might be suffering from dementia, and Camo Alerts, dispatched in at least three states when current or former members of the military are missing and thought to be a threat to themselves or others.

Source: Please Stop Sending Terrifying Alerts to My Cell Phone | WIRED

Major League Baseball Drops Weed From Its Drugs Of Abuse List | Green Entrepreneur

Major League Baseball made a major change to its drug-testing policy in December, removing cannabis from its list of Banned Substances. The league now plans to treat weed like alcohol, offering players optional treatment.

That’s a major change in how most professional sports league’s treats cannabis, which many athletes have turned to for training and recovery.

Also, in the wake of the overdose death of a pitcher — the Los Angeles Angels’ Tyler Skaggs — the league has focused on testing for opioid misuse. The policy amendments also provide players treatment when they test positive for substances on the Drugs of Abuse list, which now includes opioids, cocaine, LSD and MDMA, among other drugs.

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Snacking Pod |

Most of us spend much of our time on the go, rushing to work and shuttling kids to activities. Somewhere in the midst of the hustle, we have to eat. Stak has created a snacking pod to match those lifestyle needs, while aiming to create a long-lasting, eco-friendly product that eliminates the temptation of convenient but wasteful individually wrapped snacks.

Convenience products have been flooding the supermarket shelves for decades, serving the needs of individuals and families who pack food to travel through the day with them. But these conveniences come at a cost in the form of single-use plastic packaging and excessive waste. Plus, the food is typically highly processed and loaded with preservatives. Stak developed an easy, zero-waste way to transport healthy snacks and is hoping to bring the product to market via a successful Kickstarter campaign.

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Business Trends To Leverage In 2020 |

If you have a small business, it’s essential to keep up with the latest trends in technology, marketing, customer service and other areas that affect your business. Each business is unique, so every trend doesn’t necessarily impact you equally. However, all major trends do influence your customers’ expectations, so it’s good to be up to date.

Here are some of the most significant trends I’m currently seeing that will impact small businesses in 2020 and beyond.

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Xenoma’s e-skin smart pajamas take ‘wearable’ to a whole new level | Mashable

As any fan of Rihanna knows, pajamas are back. But one Japanese smart clothing brand is pushing the envelope in a way even RiRi couldn’t manage.

Tokyo-based Xenoma debuted a collection of smart pajamas, called the e-skin Sleep & Lounge collection, at the Consumer Electronics Show’s (CES) Unveiled showcase Sunday.

It has two main styles: A lightweight classic grandpa look, which is loose, airy, and soft to the touch, as well as a jersey kangaroo pocket sweatsuit that feels cozy enough to keep you warm through winter.

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Impossible Foods reveals plant-based pork | CNN

Impossible Foods, known for its meatless burgers, is launching plant-based pork.

Impossible Pork debuts at tech conference CES in Las Vegas this week, and attendees will be able to taste the new product. Like the Impossible Burger, the plant-based pork is made with soy protein and is designed to look, taste and cook like real meat.

Others will be able to try a sausage version of the product when it arrives at 139 Burger King restaurants later this month. Some locations in Georgia, Michigan, Illinois, New Mexico and Alabama will serve a croissant breakfast sandwich featuring the Impossible Sausage for a limited time

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