TLDR 2022-08-22

TikTok monitors keystrokes 📱, Carmack's AGI startup 🤖, how to get a 4-day workweek 👨‍💻

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Big Tech & Startups

TikTok’s In-App Browser Includes Code That Can Monitor Your Keystrokes, Researcher Says (5 minute read)

TikTok's in-app browser inserts code that allows the company to monitor user activity on websites. This includes keystrokes and whatever users tap on the page. The tracking makes it possible for TikTok to capture information such as passwords or credit card numbers. TikTok confirmed that the tracking features exist but it claims that it is not using them.

John Carmack’s AGI startup raises $20 million from Sequoia, Nat Friedman, and others (2 minute read)

John Carmac, the co-founder of Id Software, is working on a new artificial general intelligence startup called Keen Technologies. The startup recently raised $20 million in a financing round that included several big names. While some believe that AGI will be achievable within the next century, others doubt that it will ever become a reality. Carmac will continue to consult with Meta on VR.
Science & Futuristic Technology

Researchers allegedly create a new 'controllable, reversible' gene-editing method in China (2 minute read)

Scientists from the Chinese Academy of Sciences have developed a new gene-editing approach using CRISPR technology. The Cas13d-N2V8 system uses the Cas13 enzyme, which targets RNA. RNAs are transient molecules that only exist in the cell for a short period of time and are not integrated into the genome. The scientists claim that the Cas13 gene editing system is reversible and safer and more controllable compared to CRISPR-Cas9.

Lucid unveils top-of-the-line performance EV that does zero to 60 in under two seconds (4 minute read)

Lucid Motors has unveiled its Lucid Air Sapphire Edition sedan. The electric vehicle can do zero to 60mph in under two seconds and a quarter-mile in under nine seconds. It has three motors, two at the rear and one at the front. The car features carbon ceramic brakes, a special set of tires, and detachable wheel shields that can make the wheels more aerodynamic and efficient. A gallery of images featuring the sedan is available.
Programming, Design & Data Science

A thread explaining diffusion models, latent space representations, and context injection (3 minute read)

This Twitter thread explains how Stable Diffusion AI works. Diffusion models turn noise into images bit-by-bit. Stable Diffusion involves computing on embeddings of images rather than on images themselves, which lowers cost and increases speed. The thread covers Stable Diffusion architecture, how Stable Diffusion uses latent space representations, how text prompts are used as context, and how changing the context repurposes Stable Diffusion to other tasks. (Website)

Webhooks are the foundation of modern API development, but few organizations are paying attention to their design, security controls, and overall operational experience. serves both as a directory of webhook providers and as a collection of best practices for providing and consuming webhooks. It includes sections on security, payload protection, and operationalizing webhooks.

Improving Project Management With Basecamp (Sponsor)

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Amazon said to be among bidders to buy Signify Health (1 minute read)

Signify Health is for sale in an auction that could value it at more than $8 billion. Amazon, CVS Health Corp., and UnitedHealth Group Inc. are among the bidders. Bids are due around Labor Day. There is no guarantee that any of the companies will reach a deal.

Ask HN: Anyone working 4 day week here, as an employee? (Hacker News Thread)

This Hacker News thread discusses four day work weeks. It is full of anecdotes on how people managed to negotiate four day work week arrangements. People with a four day work week report very positive experiences and increased productivity. Many people dropped to a four day work week just by asking for it.
Quick Links

Ask HN: Anyone else feel trapped in FANG? How did you get out? (Hacker News Thread)

While working at a FANG may get in the way of career goals and interests, employees can save up huge amounts of money and do almost anything they want after a few years.

Lyft launches autonomous vehicle in Las Vegas with plans to expand: Here’s what riders can expect (2 minute read)

Lyft and Motional have announced the launch of an all-electric autonomous vehicle on the Lyft network in Las Vegas.

Space 5G is Ready for Its Launchpad Countdown (3 minute read)

Future mobile devices will connect directly to satellites for remote roaming.

2022—The Year the Hydrogen Economy Launched? (5 minute read)

Billions of dollars have been pumped into clean hydrogen research and development due to the Inflation Reduction Act and the war in Ukraine.

Turning SQLite into a distributed database (6 minute read)

mvSQLite is an SQLite-compatible distributed database that offers massive scalability, point-in-time reads, and the strictest level of consistency.

How Apple pushed its ad-vantage (3 minute read)

Apple's move to limit app tracking kneecapped competitors as it expanded its own ad business.
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