Since the 2000s top, Carrefour had an 85% decline. Then 2018 came with a new management team focused on a green future determined to revamp the company.

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Photo by Nathália Rosa on Unsplash

With over 12,000 stores spread over more than 30 countries, Carrefour is France’s biggest retailer and one of the world’s top 5. Managing such a vast network is not an easy task. Unlike manufacturing where you just sell a product to those who like it, in retail you have to adapt to the customs of every country. That’s why in retailing we have national dominant players like Walmart in the US, Tesco in the UK, Aeon in Japan.

Carrefour was among the first ones to expand beyond its national border hoping to cash in on the globalization trend. …

2021 might be the year when electric cars become affordable to the masses thanks to this Eastern European brand.

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Dacia Spring. Source: Groupe Renault website

For the last 3 years, electric cars have been the buzz of the tech world. Tesla, Nikola, Nio, Rivian, are just a few of the startups that have captivated the attention and money of people around the world.

But what if the true electric revolution will come from a part of the world that many people haven’t even heard of?

Dacia. If you’re not from Europe, chances are you’ve never heard of this manufacturer from Romania, owned by Renault. All you need to know about Dacia is that they make practical cars. Let’s take the Sandero hatchback, which is the brand’s best selling model. A new Sandero would set you back 7900€ (9350$). For that price, you get an engine with 75 horsepowers, a steering wheel and, basic safety equipment. …

The iPhone has now become one of the most irreparable phones on the market. If the company cares about greenhouse emissions, it should start fixing that.

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Photo by Artyom Kim on Unsplash

On October 13, Apple confirmed the internet rumors and removed the charging brick and the headphones from the phone’s box. The reduction of e-waste and shipping greenhouse emissions should bring the company a step closer to accomplishing their carbon neutral target.

I can’t shake the feeling that this is just good marketing to grow the company’s profit margin. Yes, I still use my charging brick I bought with my iPhone 6, 5 years ago, so there is some truth. For people who update their iPhones regularly, the cut of charging bricks and headphones does add up. But is that enough?

What about the iPhone?

Now that the headphones and wall bricks waste was tackled, what about the elephant in the room? The iPhone has a reputation for difficult third party interventions, but it is somewhat manageable. With iPhone 12, Apple took the game to a whole new level. …

What does onion, garlic, basil, coriander, and dill have in common? They are delicious and can grow in a small flat with little to no care. Here is how and the impact on my life.

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Photo by Lesly Juarez on Unsplash

Living in a big city has always felt a bit abnormal to me, someone who grew in the countryside. I have replaced wide open fields with tall concrete walls, fresh air for smokey air, and birds chirping with cars yelling. I moved to a big city in search of a good programming college. And then I stayed for a software developer job and the friends I made here.

Programmers, writers, designers are part of the digital workforce revolution that swept the world in the last 20–30 years. And while all is great, working in the digital industry has a big flaw, it’s “digital”. …

In the last 4 years, the relationship between Europe and the US has degraded, leaving scars on many companies. But no American company has threatened to leave the common market on the grounds of “if you don’t accept my terms, then I’ll pack my things and go”.

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Image by gfergu1 from Pixabay

For some time now, the US big tech has been put under scrutiny by the EU. Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon have all been fined or are in an ongoing trial. But up to now, none of them threatened to stop its services if it doesn’t get its way.

Since 2016, scandals followed Facebook like flies follow horses. The 2016 presidential elections fake news epopea, Cambridge Analytica, the platform role in Myanmar’s genocide, US Congress investigation, EU commission investigation any many more. A full timeline of all Facebook scandals can be read here.

But in all of these scandals, the company acted as a skilled politician with public statements like “we deeply regret the role that Facebook played in ‘X’ event and we assure you that we are doing our best the combat and fix these issues in the future. The solution is more AI. We can fix this”. Soon after, a long an interface change or a pop-up with an updated privacy policy resurrected to assure you that Facebook is doing its best to protect you, the user. But in essence, things are the same. …

A year ago, Tesla was running out of money. Now, it stands at 182 billion dollars market cap, more than Volkswagen, Hyundai, and General Motors combined. This looks like another tech bubble.

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Image by ArtTower from Pixabay

For the last 2 years, Tesla has been in the spotlight across the world, and why wouldn’t be? A charismatic CEO, best in class EVs by range, an amazing autonomous driving experience available, a strong fan base. All are ingredients to dominate the automobile industry of the future.

But is enough to make the company worth more than the top 3 automakers, except Toyota? It might be if it had a market share of 50% and sold more vehicles than its biggest competitor. In 2019 Tesla sold 367,000 vehicles, according to the official statement. Toyota sold 30 times more, 10,74 million according to the Japan Times. …

In the face of coronavirus, companies imposed work from home. Now, they’ve seen a surge in productivity and want to do it after the pandemic as well. No, thanks.

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Photo by manny PANTOJA on Unsplash

I love horror films, they give me thrills that I can’t get from other types of movies.“ Did you notice the sarcasm? Unless you know me, there’s no way you could tell. It’s hard to convey sarcasm in text, it’s all about the tonality and body language. So I have to decide, either obvious phrases like “That’s just what I needed today!” or none at all.

In the context of a global pandemic, I understand the necessity of work from home. I’m grateful to work as a software developer and I understand that for another year this is the new norm. …

Founded in 2014 by Trevor Milton, Nikola is a young company, that like Tesla, wants to take on the big names of the transportation industry. But can it transform the industry accountable for 22% of total greenhouse emissions?

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Photo by ALE SAT on Unsplash

Battery electric cars seem to have everything working in their favor. Governments are incentivizing people to buy them, traditional car manufacturers are racing to launch new models each year, and everyone’s attention seems to be around electric cars.

In the last 10 years, the automobile industry has seen a shift towards electric mobility. That hasn’t been the case for the heavy-truck transportation industry. And the current battery technology is the culprit. According to APS Physics, batteries store around 100 times less energy per kilogram than gasoline. Even though energy conversion for electric vehicles is around 5 times better than that of gasoline, it’s not enough for batteries to be economically viable for trucks. …

From San Francisco to Paris and Tel Aviv, sharable electric scooters appeared in cities around the globe, but there is more to them than the “green” stickers.

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Photo by Brett Sayles from Pexels

Companies like Lime and Bird would like to have us believe that they are all about eco-friendly transportation, getting the cars off the streets, and making the cities cleaner. And in a perfect world, I would believe them. Everyone would ditch their cars inside cities and just use public transportation for long trips and the scooters for the “last mile”. In this world, everyone would park them responsibly(off the sidewalk), no one would throw them in lakes, and people would ride them on a lane separated from pedestrians.

But we don’t live in a perfect world, so we need to adapt to the realities of our environment. …

From a platform that I blamed for time loss, now I value Facebook contributions to my personal life.

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Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

47 minutes. That’s the average daily time I’ve spent last month on Facebook. That’s better than the average person of 58 minutes¹, but still, it is a lot of time. That’s almost 6 hours each week.

The problem isn’t that I spend 6 hours each week on something. The problem is that after 40 minutes of numb scrolling I don’t feel relaxed or better, I feel guilty. When I spend 40 minutes researching a hobby, in the end, I have a joyful feeling, like I’m one step closer to mastery.

I’ve tried deleting Facebook from my phone and accessing it only through my browser. It made the experience unpleasant, but it didn’t stop me from checking what’s new. And during a pandemic, there aren’t too many distractions, so seeing updates from my friends makes me feel like I still have some connection with them. …


Mihai Sandu

A software developer interested in writing about technology, environment, and self-development. Twitter @mihais77

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