Big Tech &
Airbnb asks SEC to let it give hosts equity (1 minute read)
Airbnb wants to begin giving its hosts equity in the company. Current SEC rules cap the total number of shareholders at 2,000 before a company is subject to public reporting requirements. Airbnb is asking the SEC to revise these rules for to add a "gig economy worker" category, with CEO Brian Chesky saying "Airbnb is a community-based company and we would be nothing without our hosts. We would like our most loyal hosts to be shareholders, but need these policies to change in order to make that happen."
Spotify Teams Up With Ancestry to Create DNA-Curated Playlists (1 minute read)
Spotify is partnering with Ancestry.com to create playlists based a user's DNA. Anybody who has taken one of Ancestry.com's home DNA tests can now link their account to Spotify, and Spotify will generate a playlist based on your own tastes and music that is popular or culturally significant from your ancestral homelands.
Audible comes to the Apple Watch (1 minute read)
Audible is coming to Apple Watch on watchOS 5, users can use the watch to play/pause, jump forward/back, set a sleep timer, skip, and control narration speed. Audible also has fitness programs that guide you through meditation, 5K runs and indoor cycling. Audible costs $15 a month, the app is free for no additional charge.
CSS Animation (Content Site)
CSS Animation is a site that has a lot of short tutorials on how to make cool CSS animation effects (for example, there's a tutorial on how to make the Moon revolve around the Earth using just CSS!). Lots of cool stuff here, definitely worth checking out.
Ask HN: How to come up with monetizable side project ideas? (Hacker News Thread)
A user (sunilkumarc) on Hacker News asked for ideas to come up with side projects that would generate a few hundred dollars of revenue a month. I think a lot of the advice in this thread (especially the top comment by a13n) was really informative. Definitely worth checking out if you're thinking about starting a side project to generate some passive income.
ColorBox (Web Tool)
ColorBox is a free colorpicker made by Lyft's design team. It allows you to easily pick any number of shades of a color and have the shades be distinguishable. For example, if you wanted to have 5 shades of blue that are all easy to tell apart when they're right next to each other you can do that just by using a slider with this tool. If you're like me and you constantly find yourself Googling "shades of orange hex codes" and things like that, this will save you a bunch of time.
Scientists Create Immature Human Eggs From Stem Cells (3 minute read)
A team of Japanese scientists turned human blood cells into stem cells, which they then transformed into very immature human eggs. This is huge, because being able to create human eggs means that theoretically, babies someday could be made from the blood, hair or skin cells of children, grandmothers, even deceased people. People could even potentially make babies from cells stolen from celebrities, such as skin cells left behind on a soda can.
What China Can Teach the U.S. About Artificial Intelligence (5 minute read)
America's freewheeling intellectual environment makes it particularly good at visionary research and moonshot projects. However, AI is now more about implementation than research, and here China's abundant data, hypercompetitive business landscape, and strong central government with great AI ambitions will give it a big advantage over the US. The US misunderstands each of these three dimensions. China's advantage in data comes not only from its larger population, but also from the amount of access companies and the government have to user data. For example, on WeChat, users can buy groceries, book doctor's appointments, manage their electricity and water utilities, and take out microloans. There are no US companies with that level of integration into users' lives. In Silicon Valley there is a sort of stigma about copying, but in China, they are much more pragmatic, with hundreds of copycats emerging the second a startup begins to find traction. Finally the Chinese government understands that AI's influence will be felt not only in the digital world but also the physical one. It is ready to embed sensors in roads, remove red tape in medical research, etc. to get ahead in the AI race. These are things that are harder to do in a two party state like the US, where any misstep can be ammo for the opposition party.