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What’s next for mRNA vaccines
As the covid pandemic began, we were warned that wearing face coverings, sanitizing everything we touched, and staying away from others were the only ways we could protect ourselves from potentially deadly diseases.
Thankfully, a more effective form of protection is in development. Scientists are rapidly developing new vaccines: the virus behind covid was sequenced in January, and clinical trials of the vaccine using messenger RNA began in March. By the end of 2020, vaccination efforts took off around the world.
As it stands today, the United States has delivered more than 670 million doses of vaccine. But while the first approved mRNA vaccines were for COVID-19, similar vaccines are being explored to treat many other infectious diseases, including malaria, HIV, tuberculosis and Zika — and they could even help treat cancer. read more.
— Jessica Hamzelloo
Why 2023 is the breakthrough year for batteries
If you stop and think about it long enough, the battery starts to sound a bit like magic. Seriously, the little chemical plants we carry around to store energy and release it when we need it, over and over again? wilderness.
But magic aside, batteries will play a starring role in climate action, whether powering electric cars or storing electricity generated by wind turbines and solar panels. There are significant challenges in making them cheaper and more efficient, but 2023 could be the year that some radically different approaches to batteries might make headway. read more.
— Kathy Cronhart
Casey’s story comes from The Spark, our weekly newsletter that delves into breakthroughs in battery, climate and energy technology. register Get it in your inbox every Wednesday.
I combed the internet to find you the funniest/most important/scary/fascinating stories about technology today.
1 Chinese researchers claim to have cracked encryption
If they are right, it would be a major turning point in the history of quantum computers. (Financial Times $)
+ The thorny legalities of police cracking encryption to catch criminals. (wired $)
+ What is a Quantum Resistant Algorithm? (MIT Technology Review)
2 We don’t monitor covid like we used to
But the virus is still killing thousands of people every week. (economist $)
+ The new XBB.1.5 sub-variant is spreading rapidly in the United States. (CNN)
+ The Chinese government’s death toll from COVID-19 has been questioned. (bbc)
3 Coinbase has agreed to pay US regulators $50 million
The cryptocurrency exchange allegedly violated anti-money laundering laws. (edge)
4 Amazon cuts 18,000 jobs
It was the largest number of layoffs by a technology company in the past few months. (wall street journal $)
+ Staff will have to wait two weeks to find out. (insider $)
+ Salesforce is also laying off 10% of its workforce. (Reuters)
5 Twitter verification still fails
After all, paying $8 for a blue check doesn’t actually verify someone’s identity. (wettable powder $)
6 Apple launches a series of audiobooks narrated by AI
There was an immediate backlash from writers and voice actors alike. (protector)
+ The New York City Department of Education has blocked access to ChatGPT. (motherboard)
+ However, it may help spot early signs of Alzheimer’s. (IEEE Spectrum)
+ What’s next for artificial intelligence. (MIT Technology Review)
8 The quality of consumer goods is getting worse and worse
You can thank rising manufacturing costs and the era of fast fashion. (sound)
9 They Don’t Make MP3 Blogs Like They Used to
TikTok is a poor substitute for the void they left. (New Yorker $)
10 Shitposting Finally Arrives on LinkedIn
That said, it’s still more authentic than some of the craziest posts on the platform. (vice)
“Put me in there, please. That sounds like a pleasant place to live.”
—Danielle Venne, musician and EV sound designer, reflects on how city life will get quieter once EVs become the primary means of transportation for people to get around protector.
A year into the covid-19 pandemic, Apple is showing off at an event a custom-designed M1 chip that packs 16 billion transistors onto a microprocessor the size of a large postage stamp. It was a triumph of Moore’s Law, an observation that turned into a prediction that chipmakers could double the number of transistors on a chip every few years.
But even as Apple celebrates the M1, the world is facing an economically devastating shortage of microchips, especially the relatively cheap ones that make many of today’s technologies possible.
After decades of agonizing over how to carve features down to a few nanometers on silicon wafers, the spirit of Moore’s Law — the expectation that cheap, powerful chips will be readily available — is being challenged by some more mundane concerns. The Threat of Things: Rigid supply chains. read more.
we can still have nice things
+ Hey, keep your let go of the artwork!
+ Have we finally had enough gallery wall?
+ Here’s how trans singers are adjusting to their lives Voice Changer.
+ congratulations DenmarkThere was not a single bank robbery in the last year.
+ Millennials are in love with The Cheesecake Factory Because of its quirky vibe.