National / International News
Bill Gross built Pacific Investment Management Co., or PIMCO, into a $2 trillion powerhouse. But this week, he abruptly left, roiling the bond-investing world.
Linette Lopez from Business Insider and Cardiff Garcia from FT Alphaville talked with Kai Ryssdal about the week that was: The GDP is revised upward, what does it mean? What happens when the head of the world's largest hedge fund resigns? And we look at the report from "This American Life" on the role of Goldman Sachs and the New York Federal Reserve in the run up to the financial crisis.
Listen to their conversation in the audio player above.
As part of "Screen Wars," our series exploring the future of television, we asked a bunch of the industry's brightest where they see the medium moving in the next 25 years. Here's what they said, some answers have been condensed for clarity.
Starcom President Amanda Richman, already exploring the possibilities of the second screen, focused on interactivity:
"Television will still exist but we'll think of it perhaps more as a screen that certainly has much more interactivity and opportunity for us to choose the shows that we want. Not through a remote control [but] more voice activated like, you've already seen with Xbox and Kinect over the last year. we'll be able to really program our old channels and that will be the biggest change. [TV] will look a lot more like the app world of mobile: choosing how you engage with the shows you want on an interactive screen."
Showtime head David Nevins looked to the future challenges of raising revenue without commercials:
"I don't think the demand is going anywhere. The challenge, the 'How do we get paid for it' challenge comes out of the captive audience [that] has to watch the 30 second ad. That's where some of the challenges are: There are other ways that people are demanding to see [TV], and some of them aren't so conducive to the 30-second ad. But I think people are rapidly figuring it out. I think as long as demand for television doesn't go away, we'll figure out the business model challenges."
Marlene King, showrunner of the very buzzy drama "Pretty Little Liars," said in the future the buzz around a show will keep up all year:
"This is the second golden age of television, I think it's such an exciting time to be in TV ... Netflix releases "House of Cards" or "Orange is the New Black" and it stays relevant — people are talking about it on social media — for about month, and then it kind of goes away until the next one comes out. What's next is finding a way to create a show that you binge-watch, but people keep talking about all year long. [You] find ways to stay out there in the universe. I think that's what people are trying to do, and I think in 25 years maybe there will be those types of shows."
Roy Price, head of Amazon Studios, said he's frustrated at scrolling through hundreds of channels and landing in the middle of a show he wanted to watch:
"My prediction is that everything or anything that you may find inconvenient or annoying about TV now is going to be innovated away ... I think we can do better ... With the exception of sports and live events, even the concept of coming into a show in the middle of the show will soon be part of the past ... It should start when you start, you should be the boss."
Marketplace Tech host Ben Johnson had a few ideas, particularly about all the different places we'll watch TV:
We're going to see the nature of screens change in the home. It's not going to be a television anymore but maybe it will be a wall in your home ... that plays content that you deliver from your mobile device. You tell the wall what to play for you...Another place that I think we're going to be watching a lot of television is in our cars...It's early days right now, but a lot of estimates say that in 25 years we're going to see a lot more self-driving cars on the road. I think we're going to be watching a lot of TV while we are moving in vehicles. Not just as it is now, when you're sitting on a plane, but when you're sitting in a car doing every day things as you're traveling.
After asking all these guests that question for two weeks, Kai Ryssdal's prediction had gone full sci-fi. After all, who could have predicted all the advances in the past 25 years?
I am much more on the 'In 25 years we're all going to have chips in our brain' spectrum, and I'm only being a little bit factious... You heard Roy Price at Amazon say you're not going to have to scroll through menus and all that. I think we're going to be a step beyond that, and I don't know what that is...I think it's going to be much more innate, much more sub conscious, much more intuitive than actually having to decide to watch something. We're almost just going to think it and it's going to be there.
Finally, we asked you all to let us know what you thought TV would be like in the future. Most predicted that the platform won't even exist:
This weekend’s reading list:
New York Times: Roger Goodell Says N.F.L. Will Overhaul Personal Conduct Policy
Daily Beast: Capitalism Is Saving the Climate, You Hippies
Bloomberg Businessweek: A Hedge Fund's 294-Page Recipe for Fixing Olive Garden
This week, the CDC predicted there could be tens of thousands of Ebola cases if the disease is not controlled soon. Author Alaya Dawn Johnson turns to a favorite novel for wisdom amid this epidemic.
In one coastal community, some residents are trying to get manatees off the endangered species list. But manatee advocates say the sea cows, threatened by ecotourism, need more protection, not less.
When the 23-year-old Sierra Leonean tells patients to follow their doctors' orders and to keep fighting, they really listen.
A man, who police say recently tried to convert co-workers to Islam, allegedly severed the head of one of his colleagues after he was fired from his job.
As classic sitcom Gilligan's Island celebrates its 50th birthday, NPR TV critic Eric Deggans says it is an example of a show much loved by fans despite widely acknowledged mediocrity.
This week, we learned that defaults on federal student loans declined in 2013 for the first time in years. 13.7 percent of student borrowers defaulted on payments after they started coming due, that’s about a point lower than last year. But defaults are still far above what they were before the recession. Student loans can be scary and emotional… but key to getting an education.
How would you redesign student financial aid?
Here's what students at the University of Southern California had to say.