Category: Art and Craft

“Every Guy Could Use A Pair of These!”, Every Man is Obsessed With These Men’s Dress Shows – They Are Hand Made And Can Rival Much Higher Pricier Brands.

“Every Guy Could Use A Pair of These!”, Every Man is Obsessed With These Men’s Dress Shows – They Are Hand Made And Can Rival Much Higher Pricier Brands.

Dress shoes pose a conundrum for many guys: On the one hand, you want your shoes to be comfortable and of high craftsmanship; on the other hand, you don’t want to have to spend upwards of $500 on a pair to get those features.

Paying for quality is smart, but not everyone can (or wants to) spend more than $200 on a pair of black lace-ups or loafers. This notion resonated with Ariel Nelson and Lane Gerson, co-founders of the wildly successful men’s footwear company Jack Erwin; so much so that they quit their day jobs to start this venture.

We built Jack Erwin because we couldn’t find the shoe we wanted — so really we are the best representation of our customer. We focus on what we would want from a brand and go with it,” Nelson and Gerson told Business Insider.

Since launching the direct-to-consumer company back in 2013, Jack Erwin has come to offer 16 different “well-made, beautifully designed shoes at an affordable price” — ranging from suede driving loafers to leather bluchers and wingtip combat boots. In keeping with the mindset of company’s namesakes (Nelson and Gerson’s fathers, “two men who appreciate great shoes, but who will never pay more than $200 on a pair”), the most expensive three pairs in its collection are just $220. The other 13 are less than $200. 

For today’s wolves of Wall Street, that’s a deal. For comparison’s sake, the average Salvatore Ferragamo loafer will set you back at least $500, if not $600 or $700. Even Allen Edmonds dress shoes, which are by and large what the majority of finance guys wear (or aspire to wear) on a daily basis, run closer to $400 a pair on average.

Accessibility is a very much an issue in the men’s dress shoe market; and it’s one Jack Erwin is tackling — not only by offering its customers affordable prices, but by accompanying those prices with style and comfort that can rival much pricier pairs. “After the break in period, comfort is very important,” Gerson explained to us. “To really look good and feel good you have to be comfortable. We have worked with our factories in Spain to find high-quality leathers that soften as they wear. We’ve increased the flexibility of our insole boards and leather outsoles, and we’ve introduced rubber sole options to further address comfort and durability,” added Nelson. They just look great on top of that.

If you’re in the market for new oxfords for work, or casual loafers for weekends, have a look. All signs point to Jack Erwin being a solid investment.


Archie Penny Loafer (Sullivan Collection), $195.

The ‘Archie’ is your classic penny loafer, which should go well suit suits and jeans alike. It, too, is Goodyear constructed.



The ‘Joe’ is your classic black lace-up — a staple for every guy’s closet. The co-founders told us 1-2 wears should be enough to fully break them in.

Joe Cap-Toe Oxford (Foster Collection), $195.


You may need up to 5 wears to fully break in these Goodyear-welted bluchers, but after that, the leather should begin soften and conform to your feet. Their a brogued overlay and traditional long-wing details are nice touches for the modern gentleman who’s concerned with style as well as comfort.

Hubert Long Wing Blucher (Sullivan Collection), $195.


Suede driving loafers are a great choice for casual Fridays and weekends. The ‘Ernie’ comes in three colors, though the navy is our top pick.

Ernie Driving Loafer (Wright Collection), $95.


Not every guy is a boots guy, but if you’re one, you could do much worse than the ‘Carter’. The military-style boot should work well with your jeans and chinos, and if you’re on the more stylish side, the burgundy color (they also come in black and chocolate brown) is a welcome department from the norm.

Carter Wingtip Combat Boot (Sullivan Collection), $220.


AI tool scours all the science on the web to find new knowledge


IT’S the proverbial needle in a haystack. The more information there is online, the easier it is to overlook the most important stuff. Now an automated tool has been set the Herculean task of mining every science paper it can find online to help researchers come up with new ideas.

Semantic Scholar, launched this week by the Seattle-based Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence (AI2), can read, digest and categorise findings from the estimated 2 million scientific papers published each year. Up to half of these papers are never read by more than three people. The system aims to identify previously overlooked information and connections with other research.

“Our vision is of a scientist’s apprentice, giving researchers a very powerful way to analyse what’s going on in their field,” says Oren Etzioni, director of AI2. A researcher will be able to ask what the literature says about middle-aged women with diabetes who use a particular drug, for instance.

The system works by crawling the web for publicly available papers and then scanning their text and images. By identifying citations and references, Semantic Scholar can determine the most influential or controversial papers. It also highlights key phrases from similar studies, extracting and indexing the data sets and methods used by each researcher.

AI2 is not the only organisation intent on digitising and analysing the world’s scientific discoveries. Meta, a big-data start-up in Toronto, Canada, announced a similar service this week called Meta Science, which scans publishers’ libraries and university websites to rank scientific papers. In 2013, a system using IBM’s Watson AI technology, called the Knowledge Integration Toolkit (KnIT), mined 100,000 papers to successfully predict the interactions of a tumour-suppressing protein. IBM says KnIT is now fully automated to work without human oversight. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in the US is also working on technology, code-named Big Mechanism, to read all papers on certain types of cancer to help identify potential treatments. It is scheduled for completion by the end of 2017.

Kenneth Forbus of Northwestern University in Chicago, Illinois, is confident that such services will prove useful. “Machines that help us filter could increase the rate at which we find, if not diamonds in the rough, then at least useful nuggets,” says Forbus. “One might miss something, but professors already routinely use graduate students and colleagues for the same service, so the risks are well-understood.”

“Machines that help us filter information could increase the rate at which we find useful nuggets”

At launch, Semantic Scholar is focusing on computer-science papers. It will gradually expand its scope to include biology, physics and the remaining hard sciences.

Etzioni says the plan is to increase the system’s power over time to see how deeply it can understand what a paper is about. “Ultimately, perhaps a human scientist doesn’t have to read it at all.”