Self-Driving Cars and Wearable Tech Will End Insurance as We Know It

Underwriting began with blackboards in a 1680s London coffee shop. Here’s how it will adapt to an A.I.-driven future.

Peter Diamandis
Marker
Published in
10 min readFeb 5, 2020

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Photo: Eric Baradat/Getty Images

Co-authored with Steven Kotler, founder and executive director of the Flow Research Collective.

InIn 1680, Edward Lloyd arrived in London. He was 32 years old and hunting for opportunity. He found one in coffee. Fueled by this then novel beverage, London’s coffeehouse scene was exploding. Over three thousand java shops were already scattered throughout the city. Was the marketplace too crowded for another competitor? Lloyd didn’t think so. In 1686, he launched his own establishment, Lloyd’s Coffee House, on London’s Tower Street.

At the time, London was driven by two economic engines: shipping and finance. Lloyd’s was located at the epicenter of both, tucked into a tiny area between the Tower of London and Thames Street. Given this location, from the beginning the shop was popular with merchants, sailors, and shipowners.

Back then, coffeehouses earned patron loyalty by offering a mix of caffeinated beverages, the latest news and information, and the opportunity to participate in heated intellectual debate. Lloyd’s offerings went further than most. To provide…

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Peter Diamandis
Marker
Writer for

Passionate about innovation and creating a world of Abundance. Companies: XPRIZE, Singularity University, Planetary Resources, Human Longevity Inc.