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|Articles - March 2014|
|Tuesday, February 25, 2014|
Page 1 of 5
BY JAKE THOMAS
In the beginning, money as a medium of exchange revolved around grain, cattle and other necessities. Next came beads, cowry shells and shiny pieces of metal. Today government-issued paper and coins are the rule of thumb. Increasingly, the entire financial system is devolving into sequences of zeros and ones.
For centuries people have relied on an unspoken social contract that assigns a commonly understood value to a recognized set of objects. But if currency has always had a physical existence, its value is defined by the community and the marketplace and is therefore ephemeral. At some level, money has always been an abstraction.
In 2014 physical currency is less tangible than ever, with money’s bling increasingly likely to be found on computer screens. As cash turns into trash, technological innovations are streamlining banking practices and commerce for businesses and consumers.
But the changes under way go beyond transactional efficiencies. As the nation’s financial system comes under increasing scrutiny, currency innovations are being touted as a solution to social and economic problems, democratizing access to capital, helping nurture local businesses and giving a boost to those near the bottom of the economic totem pole.
Oregon Business explored some of the innovations taking place in various financial institutions, from banks cautiously exploring mobile payments to cutting edge digital-currency startups still searching for a market. One thing is clear; although the future of money may be fast, easy and literally immaterial, the goals of the evolving ecosystem remain decidedly old-fashioned: to facilitate exchange, to allow people to move goods and services and, ideally, to boost work, productivity and income.
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
BY DEBRA RINGOLD | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR
Why has six years become an acceptable investment in public undergraduate education that over-promises and underperforms?
Thursday, July 03, 2014
BY TED AUSTIN & MIKE BAELE | GUEST CONTRIBUTORS
The Office of Economic Analysis announced that Oregon is currently enjoying the strongest job growth since 2006. While this resurgence has been welcome, the lingering effects of the 2008 “Great Recession” continues to affect Oregon businesses, especially with regard to estate planning and business succession.
Monday, July 07, 2014
BY TOM COX | OB BLOGGER
Named after the 2010 experiment by Thomas Ryan, "Robin Sages" are fake social media profiles designed to encourage linking and divulging valuable information.
Friday, August 15, 2014
In this week's poll, we asked readers: "Who should pay for the troubled Cover Oregon website?" Here are the results.
Tuesday, July 08, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR
The New Yorker recently published a sharply worded critique of “disruptive innovation,” one of the most widely cited theories in the business world today. The article raises questions about the descriptive value of disruption and innovation — whether the terms are mere buzzwords or actually explain today's extraordinarily complex and fast changing business environment.
Update: We caught up with Portland's Thomas Thurston, who shared his data driven take on the disruption controversy.
Monday, July 14, 2014
BY VIVIAN MCINERNY | OB BLOGGER
Some people think Amazon’s winking eye logo is starting to look like a hoodwink.
Thursday, July 31, 2014
BY MARY SPILDE | OB GUEST CONTRIBUTOR
Faced with the aftermath of the “great recession,” increasing concern about the environment and dwindling family wage jobs, we have some very important choices to make about our future.
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Vigilant enters a New Year with a new president.
How George Fox has become one of Oregon's largest private universities.
Forest Grove sees growth in the burgeoning food and beverage scene.
Lane Powell Shareholder William T. Patton has been appointed to the board of directors for Cascade AIDS Project, an organization that provides educational services and outreach to thousands of Oregonians living with HIV/AIDS.
Fifty-one Lane Powell lawyers were recently selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® (Best Lawyers) 2015; of those selected, 23 lawyers are from the Firm’s office in Portland, Oregon.
Barran Liebman is proud to announce that Andrew Schpak, a Partner of the firm, has been named Chair of the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division for the 2014-2015 bar year.