Big Tech &
Spotify launches its live audio app and Clubhouse rival, Spotify Greenroom (4 minute read)
Spotify Greenroom is now available on iOS and Android in 135 markets around the world. Greenroom is an app that allows users to join or host live audio rooms. It features a live text chat that the host can turn on or off at any time. Hosts can save sessions and edit them to become podcasts. The app is based on Locker Room, a sports-focused audio app that Spotify acquired in March. Live audio sessions will be recorded by Spotify as part of a moderation process. There are plans for monetization options for creators in the future.
Apple has reportedly considered launching its own primary healthcare service (2 minute read)
Apple has plans to launch a subscription-based healthcare service. The idea was first conceived in 2016 when Apple was considering how the data collected from the Apple Watch might be used to improve healthcare. Apple has tested the service with its employees at a health clinic near Apple Park. There was low enrollment and disputes over data integrity in the area of hypertension during the trial.
Researchers translate a bird's brain activity into song (4 minute read)
Researchers from the University of California San Diego were able to reproduce a songbird's vocalizations by only reading its brain activity. A songbird's vocalizations is similar to human speech in various ways. They are both complex and learned behaviors. The researchers used machine learning algorithms to analyze neural recordings from the birds. This study could lead to the development of a vocal prosthesis for individuals who have lost the ability to speak.
Israel develops camouflage tech that makes soldiers ‘invisible’ (3 minute read)
Polaris Solutions has developed a camouflage sheet that can make soldiers on the battlefield virtually undetectable. The Kit 300 is a lightweight sheet made out of a special thermal visual concealment material that makes it difficult to distinguish from nature, both with the naked eye and with thermal imaging equipment. Each sheet comes with different coloration on each side. They can be molded into three-dimensional shapes, or folded into compact rolls. The sheets can also be used as a shelter or stretcher, a splint to immobilize broken bones, or as a hypothermia blanket. A picture of the Kit 300 being used as a camouflage sheet is available in the article.
Programming, Design & Data Science
Modern Unix (GitHub Repo)
This repository contains a collection of modern alternatives to common Unix commands. There is a screenshot or GIF demo for each tool, as well as a short description of what the tool does.
Ask HN : How to get back in employment market after working on side projects? (Hacker News Thread)
Taking time off work for side projects can mean that you end up with a gap in your resume that future employers might be curious about. Spending time with side projects doesn't mean you're not working, and work that you do for yourself isn't less valuable than work that a boss tells you to do. Treat the side projects as a business and discuss what problems the business solved. People in tech are usually familiar with working on side projects, so they likely relate to your experience.
How Does One Get Hired by a Top Cybercrime Gang? (6 minute read)
The U.S. Department of Justice recently announced the arrest of a 55-year old Latvian woman who allegedly worked as a programmer for Trickbot. Trickbot has infected millions of computers and installed ransomware on many systems. The woman did not cover her tracks very well and her personal information was easily obtained by authorities. Trickbot's hiring model allows the gang to recruit a steady stream of developers cheaply and covertly. However, each new recruit increases the risk of investigators infiltrating the group. Ransomware attacks are nearly all instigated by ransomware affiliate groups, who are constantly recruiting new members.
Facebook will start putting ads in Oculus Quest apps (3 minute read)
Facebook will start testing ads inside its Oculus Quest virtual reality system in the coming weeks. It will expand the system based on user feedback. The Oculus mobile app started displaying ads last month, but this is the first time ads will appear inside the VR platform. Facebook is not changing how it collects or analyzes user data. Some sensitive data, like images from the headset camera and information from Oculus Move fitness tracking, will remain only on users' devices. Facebook has no plans to use movement data or recordings from its voice assistant for ads.