Thursday, September 26, 2019

Illumina Throws PacBio An Extension and a Lifeline

Interesting news today on the PacBio front: as reported by GenomeWeb, Illumina announced that their walkaway date for the acquisition has been extended to March 31 of next year and that Illumina will be pumping significant cash into PacBio until either the merger occurs or is terminated.  In addition to publicly reinforcing Illumina's determination to get the deal done, the terms of the arrangement have interesting consequences should the deal fall through

Where U.K.'s CMA Missed the Plot

I've written far more than I expected to on the PacBio merger, with it dominating my output here this summer save that recent dip in the CCS boomerangs.  We still haven't heard from the U.S. FTC, which is the big hammer that could drop and the stock is still selling at a substantial discount to the price offered by Illumina.  While I've hinted at it, I've never quite detailed my major objection to the form of the UK CMA's analysis of the proposed acquisition.  I've missed the opportunity to lay that out during the period of public comment for the next round of the CMA.  Still, worth it to write it down.  Which was true about a month ago when I wrote this, then failed to actually push it to a post before I headed out for a rugged vacation in the American West.  And then forgot about it after returning.  And more news today to comment on -- so better finally get this out there.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Amazon Needs Another Training Track

I spent a day recently taking Amazon's "AWS Technical Essentials" course.  I had originally opted not to go, but a summons went out that we had already paid for seats and that everyone using AWS should really go.  I've been in far worse courses and certainly had no complaints with our instructor, a former mechanical engineer who knew his stuff and was never in salesman mode.  Indeed, many of the tips I extracted had to do with how to save money.  No, the problem is that the course is designed for a very, very different use case than anyone in my shoes is interested in.  It's a use case that I'm sure Amazon has a few bazillion customers for, but I'm just not one of them.