snapchat
Snapchat is Still a Mess

Earlier this year, Snapchat owner Snap Inc. saw its stock plummet after a brutal first-quarter report that saw it come in over $13 million short of $244 million earnings expectations. Spoiler alert: The pain is not stopping. Read More >>

privacy
The Dangers of Tech’s Privacy Promises

Where do you go to tell a secret? Probably depends on the secret. What you’d feel comfortable murmuring to a friend in a private meeting is likely not what you’d say loudly to a coworker while your boss is in earshot. Online, we not only communicate, we calculate—based on who we’re speaking to, or what platform we’re using, we gauge whether the information we divulge will remain solely with the people we’ve chosen to share it with. As leaks, breaches, and data collection scandals grab headlines, it’s clear that we’re often wrong. And as it turns out, it’s our very trust in technology that promises privacy and anonymity that often makes that violation worse. Read More >>

facebook
Guy Who Gave Cambridge Analytica All That Facebook Data: Actually, My Data Sucked

Cambridge University psychologist Aleksandr Kogan, the scientist whose app “thisisyourdigitallife” harvested tens of millions of Facebook profiles for disgraced and now-shuttered election data firm Cambridge Analytica, wants everyone to know that his data set is not responsible for the way the 2016 US elections went down. Read More >>

artificial intelligence
Self-Taught AI Masters Rubik’s Cube in Just 44 Hours

Meet DeepCube, an artificially intelligent system that’s as good at playing the Rubik’s Cube as the best human master solvers. Incredibly, the system learned to dominate the classic 3D puzzle in just 44 hours and without any human intervention. Read More >>

technology
Silicon Valley Invents Shoes

Silicon Valley firms crunched their hardest in 2017 to rebrand ordinary merchandise long produced by other industries as uniquely innovative product lines. Some of them were pretty obnoxious, like Lyft’s totally-not-just-a-bus shuttle service, or WeLive’s attempt to market living in communal housing as a lived experience, or the company selling a “private pop-up space” that is literally a tent. Almost all of them felt like ideas cooked up in an ideological and economic bubble. Read More >>

plastic
A Paper Straw Factory Is Opening Up in Britain Before a Planned UK Single-Use Plastics Ban

The first paper straw factory in the “last several decades” in Britain is planning to launch in Wales as fast-food chains prepare for a planned ban on single-use plastic products throughout the UK, the Guardian reported, with some chains already preparing their own plans to phase out plastic in favour of paper. Read More >>

science
These Tests Will Tell You Just How Good Your Eyes Are at Seeing Colour

Let’s talk about how you’re perceiving colour. The idea came to me when a coworker asked if they should get the computer with 100-per cent sRGB or 100-per cent Adobe RGB, which displays more shades of green. I jokingly told him to take this X-Rite colour perception test to see if he could even perceive colour well enough for the more expensive Adobe RGB display. He could — but some people can’t! Read More >>

cryptocurrency
CryptoKitties, Which Is Like Beanie Babies on the Blockchain, Seems to Be Crashing

Axiom Zen’s CryptoKitties, which is essentially a digital version of Beanie Babies based on the Ethereum blockchain, sucked in a massive amount of funding just a few months ago. But it looks an awful lot like people bought into CryptoKitties looking for a quick return on their investment and are finding that digital cats don’t always go up in or even hold their price. Read More >>

ai
Most Deepfake Videos Have One Glaring Flaw

The rate at which deepfake videos are advancing is both impressive and deeply unsettling. But researchers have described a new method for detecting a “telltale sign” of these manipulated videos, which map one person’s face onto the body of another. It’s a flaw even the average person would notice: a lack of blinking. Read More >>

ai
Deepfake Videos Are Getting Impossibly Good

Fake news sucks, and as those eerily accurate videos of a lip-synced Barack Obama demonstrated last year, it’s soon going to get a hell of a lot worse. As a newly revealed video-manipulation system shows, super-realistic fake videos are improving faster than some of us thought possible. Read More >>

cryptocurrency
Sesame Street’s VC Arm Dips Its Furry Fingers Into Blockchain Education

Most adults couldn’t even explain the basics of how the blockchain works, and Sesame Street is determined to make sure that won’t be a problem for the next generation. The children’s edutainment series has a venture capital firm that has now invested in a company that wants to give kids the building blocks of cryptocurrency. Read More >>

watch this
The Hypnotic Wavy Fins on This Swimming Alien-Like Robot Make It Agile as Hell

Replicating the complicated muscle structure that allows fish to wiggle their bodies and dart through the water is no easy feat. But not every underwater creature moves that way. Cuttlefish instead use long fins that undulate in waves to propel themselves, which is an approach that robotics maker Festo found relatively easy to replicate. Read More >>

gaming
You Can Link Switches Together In Nintendo’s Next Big Party Game

Details are scarce, but Super Mario Party, the next version of Nintendo’s popular party game series, is coming to the Switch, and it will enable you to pair at least two Switches together and play as though the screens were physically one. Read More >>

apple
A Mix-Up Meant Malware Could Have Posed as Apple Software, and Nobody Noticed for Over 10 Years

Security researchers on Tuesday unveiled a method that could’ve allowed hackers to bypass a wide range of commercial products designed to protect Apple devices from malware. While there’s no evidence the bypass was ever used maliciously, the issue went unnoticed for over a decade. Read More >>

cryptocurrency
Bitcoin Price Plunges After Hack of South Korean Exchange, Down 53 Per Cent Since December

It’s hard out there for people who play with imaginary money. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies plunged over the weekend after it was revealed that a South Korean exchange, Coinrail, was hacked. Roughly $42 billion (£31 billion) of market value was destroyed in the sell-off, and Bitcoin has lost over 50 per cent of its worth since December. Read More >>