Big Tech &
Uber says it will start delivering fast food by drone in San Diego this summer (2 minute read)
Uber will begin fast food deliveries using drones in San Diego later this year, pending approval from the Federal Aviation Administration. The drone deliveries will not be made directly to customers’ houses. Instead, deliveries will be sent to ‘designated safe landing zones’. Uber couriers will then take the package from the landing zone and deliver it to the customer. Costs for drone delivery will be about the same as regular fees, but deliveries will be much faster. Uber predicts that drone deliveries will be so common in 10 years time that fast food restaurants will redesign their kitchens around them.
This is Google’s Pixel 4 (2 minute read)
Google just tweeted an image of the new Pixel 4, which is expected to be released in October. The image features design changes from renders that were released only a few days ago. For the first time ever, there is no rear fingerprint scanner present on the device. The image clearly shows two rear cameras and a third sensor of some kind on the back of the camera, as well as a tiny dot on the lower right of the camera module. Previous Pixel designs have been leaked extensively, so it appears that this time Google is trying to control the narrative surrounding the release of the Pixel 4.
Tesla says solar roof is on its third iteration, currently installing in 8 states (1 minute read)
Elon Musk has revealed at the Tesla annual shareholder meeting that Tesla’s solar roof product is currently being installed on properties in eight states. Tesla produces tiles that are designed to look like high-quality traditional roofing tiles, with integrated solar panels that are not easily identifiable from ground level. The tiles are now on their third version, with this version being almost at cost-parity with an entry-level cheap traditional tile, after considering the cost savings of the generated electricity. Musk is optimistic about the rollout of the new tiles, but there is currently no information on when the tiles will be released or what the installation price will be.
Scientists discover previously unidentified mass beneath moon's surface (2 minute read)
A giant mass larger than the size of Hawaii has been discovered hundreds of miles beneath the South Pole-Aitkin crater on the moon. The mass was detected by analyzing data taken from spacecraft during NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory mission, which explored the moon’s interior and thermal history. Scientists are unsure what the mass is composed of. It is possible that the mass contains metal from a previous asteroid impact, or alternatively, the mass was formed from molten magma sometime during the moon’s history.
Programming, Design & Data Science
Automagica (GitHub Repo)
Automagica is an open-source Smart Robotic Process Automation platform. Users can write cross-platform automation scripts using Python. Officially, only Windows is supported. Using Automagica, users can automate browsing/scraping, SAP, folder and file manipulation, and more. Natural Language scripts are supported.
PingCAP Talent Plan (GitHub Repo)
This repository contains a series of training courses about writing distributed systems in Go and Rust. The courses mainly consist of projects where coding problems are presented. While the courses are maintained by PingCAP for training and evaluating students, new employees, and new contributors to TiDB and TiKV, they are appropriate for all Go and Rust programmers and do not require any interest or knowledge in either TiDB or TiKV.
Jordan Peterson Announces Free Speech Platform ‘Thinkspot’ (2 minute read)
Jordan Peterson has announced the development of a new social media platform, Thinkspot. The platform aims to provide users the best features of other social media, but without the censorship. Current social media platforms ban users for offenses such as misgendering someone or making negative comments towards certain groups. Thinkspot will also subsidize content creators directly with a payment system similar to Patreon. It will have a minimum word limit for posts, which Peterson hopes will encourage more thoughtful discussions. Content can also be voted on by users. Comments which receive too many negative votes will be automatically hidden by the platform, but not deleted. Thinkspot is currently in beta and will be launched in August.
Facebook CEO may have known of questionable privacy practices: WSJ (1 minute read)
Facebook has been under investigation by the Federal Trade Commission for inappropriate handling of customers’ private information. It has fully complied with the investigation so far and has provided tens of thousands of documents, emails, and files. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that people who were familiar with the case have discovered emails which prove that Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg was involved in the problematic privacy practices of the company. Facebook has previously stated that they are prepared to pay a fine of up to $5 billion in order to settle the case with regulators.