TLDR 2019-12-12

Twitter's decentralized protocol πŸ’», Netflix's yearly plans πŸŽ₯

Big Tech & Startups

Twitter plans to build a 'decentralized standard' for social networks (1 minute read)

CEO of Twitter Jack Dorsey has announced that the company will set up an independent research group to create an open and decentralized standard for social media networks. Centralized solutions are unlikely to be able to scale in the future due to challenges such as large scale content moderation. Blockchain technology can provide a model for decentralizing content hosting, oversight, and even the monetization of social media. A decentralized social network would allow Dorsey and his team to focus on building open recommendation systems that promote healthy conversation.

Netflix tests cheaper, yearly subscription plan in India (2 minute read)

New Netflix subscribers in India will be able to choose to subscribe to the service for three, six, or 12 months at a time for discounts of up to 50 percent. India has previously been used as a testing grounds for new features, with Netflix launching the mobile-only monthly plan in the country earlier this year. Netflix currently offers four plans in India. It is spending about $420 million on content for India. The company's first animated series from India was watched by 27 million households worldwide.
Science & Futuristic Technology

The world’s first 3D-printed neighborhood now has its first houses (5 minute read)

A 33-foot-long 3D printer can build new homes in 24 hours. It is currently building a neighborhood in a rural area on the outskirts of a town in Southern Mexico. The technology could be part of the solution for affordable housing in some of the poorest communities in the world. It is the first time 3D-printed homes have been created at scale. Other attempts at 3D-printing homes have usually been in controlled conditions. The area where the houses are being printed is prone to earthquakes. There were a few delays to the project. It took some time to get government approval for land, and the 3D printer was stuck at customs for three months as the machine was in a brand new category that didn't exist. Vulcan II works by squirting out a concrete mixture. The mixture can be adjusted according to the weather. Local construction workers were hired to complete the parts of the home that couldn't be 3D printed.

World's first fully electric commercial aircraft takes flight in Canada (2 minute read)

magniX, an Australian engineering firm, in a partnership with Harbour Air, a Canadian air-ferry service, has performed the first fully-electric commercial aircraft test flight. The 15-minute flight took place in Vancouver along the Fraser River. Electric flight technology would mean significant cost savings for airlines and zero emissions. Civil aviation is one of the fastest-growing sources of carbon emissions. Electric motors require significantly less upkeep, resulting in savings in maintenance costs. Further tests are still required before Harbour Air will be able to electrify its fleet of more than 40 seaplanes. Current battery power will allow the seaplanes to fly about 160km, which is sufficient for short-haul flights.
Programming, Design & Data Science

DevOps Lessons from the Ski Industry (10 minute read)

Operations engineering has a strong tradition of learning from other industries. DevOps can learn a lot from the ski industry. Skiing is a fun sport, but it has many dangers that can result in fatalities. The ski industry engages its users by constantly updating their documentation (maps) and making sure that its users (skiers) comply with safety procedures. Many ski accidents are completely avoidable, and so are many security breaches. Incidents happen, and it is important to have procedures to follow when they happen and to always think of ways to prevent them. Running a ski resort is like testing in production. It's important to be able to notice when things are going wrong and be able to stop things before it causes any meaningful damage. Proven technology is the most reliable choice. Better quality work can be produced via peer review. Honest and open evaluation of systems will benefit everyone in the industry.

Web Development In 2020 - A Practical Guide Course List (GitHub Repo)

There are tons of technologies available for web developers and the large amount of information out there can be intimidating for newcomers. This list of technologies includes links to the top Udemy courses for each topic, as well as other resources. Alternatives to Udemy are also listed.

A Maxed Out Mac Pro Will Cost Over $52,000 (1 minute read)

Mac Pro orders are now live, with shoppers having the option to upgrade the processor, RAM, GPU, SSD, as well as adding other accessories. A Mac Pro with all the available internal hardware upgrades will cost $52,199. Users can choose to add wheels, a Magic Mouse 2 and Magic Trackpad 2 combo, a rack, a display, and a stand. A Mac Pro with all the extra options added, including the Pro Display XRT with special nano-textured glass, will cost buyers $59,748 in total.
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