Up In Smoke

Michael Tchong

Up in Smoke - Legalizing Marijuana

In 22 years, 29 states plus the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana. Eight states have approved its recreational use. And 61% of Americans say the drug should be made legal.

Robot Love

Michael Tchong

Robot Love

It was a great year for robot love fans. First came news from the U.K. Guardian that the race was on to build the world’s first sex robot. At the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show, a Las Vegas night club generated buzz with pole dancing robots. Finally, Sony reversed a 2006 decision to kill its Aibo robot dog by relaunching a …

Small Homes: Future of Real Estate

Michael Tchong

Newtown Community Development Micro Estate

Can you live in an 600-square-foot home? Many Americans will soon. U.S. homes are poised to get smaller, driven by a financial constraints and downsizing baby boomers.

Singles Nation

Michael Tchong

Singles Nation

They were first spotted during the 1970s in that ahead-of-the-curve state California. No, not yuppies but bumper stickers proclaiming, “Happiness Is Being Single.” Whoever conceived of the slogan was acutely aware of a huge wave reshaping society, as America, and the rest of the world for that matter, is becoming a nation of singles. With more competition from other ways …

How Coffee Became The World’s Energy Drink

Michael Tchong

Starbucks Aruba

Interest in coffee has soared 32% in 14 years, creating a $70 billion global market. The trend is behind the fortunes of Keurig, Nespresso and Starbucks, which today is a $25 billion global brand.

InstaBeauty: How Social Media Is Transforming Makeup

Michael Tchong

InstaBeauty AR app from YouCam

The experiential nature of social media has had a significant impact on the $200 billion global cosmetics market. The popularity of selfies has turned social networks like Instagram into the new Tupperware party. I first wrote about the impact high-definition TV was having on the beauty market back in 2009. That trend has accelerated due to the proliferation of smartphones, …

Grayfields: The Retail Downtrend

Michael Tchong

The headline is telling: “ Toys ‘R’ Us Is Prepping to Liquidate Its U.S. Operations.” How could a retailer that first opened its doors in 1948 implode so spectacularly? It’s a manifestation of the “Amazon Factor,” which is turning the retail landscape into a gray graveyard. The closures are mounting. Business Insider predicts that 3,600 stores in will close in …

Smart Cities

Michael Tchong

Smart Cities

From the earliest days of the Mesopotamians, humans have been searching for ways to improve shared spaces, usually creating a central square around which other structures were built. But no civilization has had the benefit of developing city innovation around a digital square — the backbone of the smart city trend. But first what is a smart city? A smart …

KAGOY: Kids Are Growing Older Younger

Michael Tchong

Modern technology and a shape-shifting societal landscape are conspiring to accelerate the maturity process of children, this is trend called — KAGOY — Kids Are Getting Older Younger.

Globesity: As The World Fattens

Michael Tchong

The obesity epidemic is threatening to tip scales all over the globe, propelling a trend dubbed “globesity.” In the U.S., four in 10 Americans, or 40%, are now obese, up from 13% in 1960.