Big Tech &
9 highlights from Snapchat CEO's 6,000-word leaked memo on survival (3 minute read)
Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel sent out a 6000 word memo to Snapchat employees detailing how they would turn the company around as Snapchat's stock hit an all-time low of $8 per share. He says that the redesign from earlier this year was a mistake, that the company needs to focus on being a chat app instead of a newsfeed app, and that Snapchat should beat Facebook by being about your best friends instead of your broader social graph. He also believes that the company needs to focus on users in older demographics and in developing markets. He gives the company, which lost $353 million last quarter, a goal to be profitable by the end of 2019.
Future Crunch (Newsletter)
Future Crunch is a once every other week newsletter full of optimistic news and breakthroughs in science and technology.
Quick SQL Cheatsheet (Github)
This is a handy SQL cheatsheet, great for anyone like me who can never remember which JOINs are which. It's short, sweet, and to the point.
Elon Musk Will Send Your Photo Into Space If You Can Convince a Friend to Buy a Tesla (3 minute read)
Tesla has a new referral program, where if you convince a friend to buy a Tesla, they will blast a laser-etched photo of your choice into space, presumably on a SpaceX rocket. If you refer a second friend, you can get a wall connector with Elon Musk's signature, or a children-sized drivable Model S. There are even better perks all the way up to five referrals, where you get a week with a Tesla Electric Semi truck for free.
NASA announces SpaceX crewed flight June 2019 (1 minute read)
NASA has announced that it will be sending the first manned flight with a SpaceX rocket to the International Space Station in June 2019. They will also be sending a similar manned flight in a Boeing rocket in August 2019. The crews will be using new lighter space suits designed by SpaceX and Boeing. These flights are considered tests, and astronauts will only be at the ISS for a couple of weeks. If all goes well NASA will be sending astronauts regularly for 6 months at a time.
Introducing the Internet Bill of Rights (5 minute read)
Ro Khanna, a Democratic representative from California, has drafted an "Internet Bill of Rights" to provide a broad set of user-friendly principles under which tech companies should operate. Users should have access to and knowlege of all data tech companies have and how the data is used. Opt-in should be the default for information collection. Data should be portable from one network to another. The list also includes net neutrality, affordable and clear pricing for internet service, and transparency and accountability for protecting privacy and personal data. This is not current legislation, it's just an early version of a long term vision for the internet.
US will rewrite safety rules to permit fully driverless cars on public roads (3 minute read)
Currently, cars in the US are required to have steering wheels, mirrors, and foot pedals. The US Department of Transportation issued a statement saying that it "intends to reconsider the necessity and appropriateness of its current safety standards" to accommodate autonomous vehicles. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao believes that the new technology could save many lives, citing a statistic that 37,000 died in car crashes last year in the US. The DoT is also removing the 10 "official test site" designations created by the Obama administration, now self driving cars can be tested anywhere and still qualify for the $60 million in congressional grants set aside for autonomous driving technologies.
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