TLDR Daily Update 2021-01-29

Big Tech & Startups

Robinhood, Interactive Brokers restrict trading in GameStop stock and options (7 minute read)

Robinhood took steps to restrict the trading in GameStop stock and other related securities. The company claims the changes were made due to recent market volatility. GameStop shares dropped after the announcement, closing down 44% on Thursday. Robinhood customers have threatened to open a class-action lawsuit against the company. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex and Ted Cruz have both called the move unacceptable. Hedge fund Melvin Capital has taken huge losses due to the actions of an army of retail investors.

Facebook Preparing Antitrust Lawsuit Against Apple for 'Unfair' Approach to Privacy and Default Apps (3 minute read)

Facebook plans to launch an antitrust lawsuit against Apple for anticompetitive behavior regarding App Tracking Transparency and iMessage. The suit claims that Apple abuses its power by enforcing App Store rules that Apple itself doesn't have to follow. Facebook claims that Apple's App Tracking Transparency feature is unfair as its prompts don't appear on Apple's apps, offering them a competitive advantage. Apple's apps do not track users or share data for advertising purposes. Facebook also claims that Apple's refusal to allow third-party messaging apps to be installed as the default option is an attempt to prevent people from switching to competing brands.
Science & Futuristic Technology

Lab-grown wood could let us grow furniture in a lab instead of in a forest (2 minute read)

MIT researchers are developing a technique to grow wood inside a lab, similar to how some meats are now cultivated. They have successfully grown wood-like plant tissue from cells extracted from leaves, without soil or sunlight. Lab-grown wood would be grown in whatever shape is required, making the growing process more efficient and less wasteful. It would also potentially let land currently used for logging to be instead be preserved as forest. The work is still in its very early stages.

3D Printing Bone Directly Into the Body (4 minute read)

Bones are a mixture of living and inorganic compounds in a highly structured mineral matrix, which presents a huge challenge for bioengineers trying to 3D print the material. A team in Australia has developed a ceramic ink that could eventually be used to print bone directly inside a patient's body. The technology has many medical and research applications. The team is currently working on printing larger samples and it has begun to start animal testing.
Programming, Design & Data Science

Luxa CSS (GitHub Repo)

Luxa CSS is a lightweight and minimalist CSS framework that can be easily implemented in any development context. It uses simple class names and a simple modifier system.

Hotwire: HTML Over The Wire (12 minute read)

Hotwire is an approach to building modern web applications by sending HTML instead of JSON over the wire. It keeps template rendering on the server and allows for development in any programming language. This article discusses using Hotwire with a JVM backend. It includes code and examples.

Drone Swarms Are Getting Too Fast For Humans To Fight, U.S. General Warns (4 minute read)

Humans may not be able to fight back against swarms of enemy drones, which might mean the rules governing human control over artificial intelligence might need to be relaxed. Current rules require meaningful human control over any lethal system. Pentagon leaders need to discuss how much human control of AI is needed to be safe but still effective, considering the context of countering new threats such as drone swarms. In these situations, humans on their own may be outclassed. AI could lead to reduced casualties due to target misidentification. Failing to deploy the best AI could mean defeat on the battlefield.

The Atlantic Ocean is getting wider every year, pushing the Americas away from Europe and Africa. We may finally know why. (4 minute read)

The Atlantic Ocean is growing 1.5 inches wider every year because the tectonic plates under the Americas are separating from those beneath Europe and Africa. This is due to the formation of a large underwater mountain range in the middle of the ocean called the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. The Mid-Atlantic Ridge separates the North American plate from the Eurasian plate, and the South American plate from the African plate. It sits on a convection hotspot on the Earth's crust. The process started about 200 million years ago.

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