Big Tech &
Fire breaks out in OVH building in Strasbourg, France (3 minute read)
A fire broke out at French cloud services firm OVH, disrupting millions of websites in the country. Up to 2% of .FR domains have been affected. The fire destroyed one of four data centers and damaged another. Investigators have yet to find a cause for the blaze. The firm recently announced plans for an initial public offering.
Leaked Renders Claim to Show Third-Generation AirPods Design (1 minute read)
A set of renders claiming to showcase the design of the next generation of AirPods has been leaked from a supplier. They appear to have a shorter stem and a smaller charging case. The images were shared by an account on Twitter that has shared accurate information in the past. Apple is planning to hold an event on March 23 that will headline AirTags, new iPad models, and possibly the new AirPods. The leaked renders are available in the article.
Rocket Lab will directly challenge SpaceX with its proposed Neutron launcher (3 minute read)
Rocket Lab has announced plans to build a rocket capable of lifting 8 tons. The Neutron booster will be able to launch constellations of satellites. Its design will balance affordability and carrying capacity. Many larger rockets are capable of carrying up to 20 tons of payload, but the average payload size for all rockets is about 4.5 tons. The reduced costs due to size will mean that Rocket Labs will be able to directly compete with providers like SpaceX. Neutron will be reusable and capable of human spaceflight.
A Wild Experiment Just Got Us Closer to Exploring Extra Dimensions (6 minute read)
Scientists from Austria have managed to measure the smallest gravitational field on record. The team demonstrated gravitational coupling between two gold spheres that measured about two millimeters across. A high level of precision was required to conduct the test. The results could lead to the development of a sensor to detect these small forces. Measuring gravity is difficult as it is very easy to overwhelm the minute signal of a gravitational field.
Programming, Design & Data Science
How the New York Times A/B tests their headlines (5 minute read)
The New York Times is open about the A/B testing it does on its headlines. This article further investigates how exactly the Times tests its headlines using web scraping and data analysis. Roughly 29% of NYT articles have multiple headlines, with some having as many as eight. Most A/B tested articles have just two headlines. Many of the changes are minor. The headlines can change as a story evolves. Most headline swaps are clearly tests looking for more clicks. Headlines tend to get more dramatic as time passes. The A/B testing seems to work, with more headline testing correlating with more engagement.
Amplication is a development tool that helps you develop quality Node.js applications. It has simple interfaces for creating data models and configuring role-based access control. Amplication can continuously push to Github and create Docker containers.
Meet Dr. B, the startup promising a better way to distribute leftover vaccines (6 minute read)
Dr. B is a service that aims to reduce the number of COVID-19 vaccines that will end up in the trash. Up to 30% of vaccine appointments are missed, leaving a thawed vaccination dose that must be used within six hours or be permanently lost. Some of these doses are allowed to expire, but they are usually distributed to whoever is available. Dr. B is designed to serve as a standby list for these situations, making it easier for providers to summon willing patients. More than half a million people in the US have signed up to be on Dr. B's waitlist.
'Computers are marvellous!': older people embrace internet in lockdown (3 minute read)
The pandemic has encouraged older people to venture online. Many are now discovering online shopping, video chat, and all the other things the internet has to offer. The internet has helped many seniors connect with other people during a time of isolation. This article contains stories from several seniors who have had their lives changed by the internet during lockdown.