TLDR 2024-05-15

Google redesigns search πŸ”Ž, OpenAI co-founder quits πŸ‘‹, AI disillusionment πŸ€–

Big Tech & Startups

Google is redesigning its search engine β€” and it's AI all the way down (6 minute read)

Billions of Google users will soon see AI-generated summaries at the top of many of their search results. The AI Overviews are designed to take out the hard work of searching so users can focus on the important things. Google announced several other AI-powered features at its I/O developer conference, such as a feature in Lens that lets users search by capturing a video, a planning tool that can generate trip itineraries and meal plans with a single query, and suggestions within search results. While similar products have come under scrutiny for summarizing content and not directing users to the actual sources of information, Google says that early data shows that the new way of searching will actually lead to more clicks to the open web.

OpenAI chief scientist Ilya Sutskever is officially leaving (4 minute read)

Ilya Sutskever, OpenAI's co-founder and chief scientist, is officially leaving the company. Sutskever helped lead the coup against Sam Altman and then later changed his mind. His employment status had been ambiguous since the ouster. Jakub Pachocki, the company's director of research, will be OpenAI's new chief scientist.
Science & Futuristic Technology

Weight loss from Wegovy sustained for up to four years, trial shows (3 minute read)

A large long-term trial of semaglutide found that early weight loss from the drug is generally maintained for up to four years, with the participants in the study receiving weekly injections. The participants in the study tended to lose weight over the first 65 weeks on the drug but then hit a plateau. Semaglutide reduced participants' risk of heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular-related deaths by 20% over the span of a little over three years. 52.4% of participants who received the drug in the study moved to a lower category of body mass index during the trial.

New gel breaks down alcohol in the body (5 minute read)

A protein-based gel developed by researchers at ETH Zurich can break down alcohol in the gastrointestinal tract without harming the body. The gel, made from whey protein fibrils, uses individual iron atoms to convert alcohol in the intestine into harmless acetic acid. It has been shown to reduce blood alcohol levels in mice by up to 50%. The gel is only effective as long as there is still alcohol in the gastrointestinal tract, so it can't help with alcohol poisoning. While it has yet to be tested in humans, the researchers are confident it will be a success, so they have already applied to patent the gel.
Programming, Design & Data Science

Project IDX, Google's next-gen IDE, is now in open beta (3 minute read)

Project IDX is an AI-centric, browser-based development environment that was launched as an invite-only service in August. Over 100,000 developers have already tried the service, which is now available in open beta. Google has added an integration with the Google Maps Platform into the IDE and integrations with the Chrome Dev Tools and Lighthouse to help debug applications. It will soon enable deploying apps to Cloud Run, Google Cloud's serverless platform for running front- and back-end services, and integrate with Checks, Google's AI-powered compliance platform.

Piko (GitHub Repo)

Piko is a reverse proxy to connect to external networks. It can be used to expose services in a customer network, as a bring-your-own-cloud service, or to connect to IoT devices. The proxy server may be hosted as a cluster of nodes for fault tolerance, scale, and zero downtime deployments. Piko was designed to serve production traffic rather than as a tool for testing and development.

Google I/O 2024: Here's everything Google just announced (14 minute read)

Google kicked off its I/O developer conference with a two-hour presentation containing a rapid-fire stream of announcements. This article summarizes these announcements into an easy-to-read list. The announcements include Firebase Genkit, an addition to the Firebase platform aimed at making it easier for developers to build AI-powered applications in JavaScript/TypeScript; LearnLM, a family of generative AI models fine-tuned for learning; AI-generated quizzes on YouTube; a new discovery feature for apps in Google Play; scam call detection; Ask Photos, a feature that lets users search across their Google Photos collection using natural language queries; and much more.

Ask HN: Disillusioned after AI? (Hacker News Thread)

In this thread, developers discuss how they feel about AI technology and its impact on their careers. Advances in AI may leave some developers feeling disillusioned. Some developers feel that whatever they build will just get gobbled away by some big tech company. AI is de-democratizing tech in a big way - a handful of giga-scale companies hold all the cards. The field is still very much in its hype phase, so while the technology is impressive, there is still a lot it cannot do.
Quick Links

Apple, SpaceX, Microsoft return-to-office mandates drove senior talent away (4 minute read)

A study published by University of Chicago and University of Michigan researchers suggests that return-to-office mandates can lead to a higher rate of employees, especially senior-level ones, leaving their companies, often to work with competitors.

The hunt for rare bitcoin is nearing an end (9 minute read)

Satoshis produced in the year bitcoin was created are considered vintage and can sell for tens of millions of times their face value.

What Factors Explain the Nature of Software? (13 minute read)

This post looks at factors that allow one to make reasonable quality predictions about any given piece of software.

AI Engineer Compensation Trends Q1 2024 (4 minute read)

There's a noticeable difference in how much money software engineers who specialize in artificial intelligence make compared to those who don't.

Amazon Web Services CEO to step down (6 minute read)

AWS CEO Adam Selipsky will step down effective June 3 and will be replaced by Matt Garman, a senior vice president who has overseen sales and marketing at AWS.

What OpenAI did (8 minute read)

GPT-4o may not be a major leap over its predecessor, but it will be more widely accessible, allowing many more people to understand how impressive AI can be.
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