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Pandemic pain is fueling robo-realism

Financial Times columnist Sarah O’Connor recently wrote the type of humility-driven reflection I wish pervaded tech coverage. She begins “Why I was wrong to be optimistic about robots” with an about-face confession that won’t surprise anyone steeped in political economy, but nevertheless is a refreshingly honest dose of fourth estate realism.  “I...

This has been the year of digital grieving

When we die, most of us alive today will be survived by the echo of our online platforms. For those we leave behind, it will be a semi-indelible comfort, an aching reminder, and at times an ever-unfolding chore. Often, it will be all of these things at once. For many, this past year has been a time of unprecedented pain and loss. Those already acquainted...

Hypto will now let you own viral moments in internet history

Hypto is an online marketplace for viral social content including videos, memes, and tweets. It will allow collectors to buy, trade, and resell viral content. Since it was set up in early February it has grown rapidly. Last week, it was one of the most popular projects featured on Product Hunt.  “People are craving something real, and this is a...

Will robot playmates become our children's only friends?

Picture this: your perennially shy seven-year-old asks you to invite a friend over on a random afternoon. Or, perhaps, you might find yourself pleasantly amazed by a series of loving notes left around your home, addressed to all the members of your family by your usually despondent and inattentive child.  Those are the sorts of character traits and...

ChitterChat: the 'socially acceptable' way to expand your network

At the beginning of February, Isaac Joy sat down and asked himself: “how would I like to use the internet?” A month later, he had created ChitterChat, a networking platform that encourages users to meet others online by connecting them with one new person each week.  “I realised social media isn't that good really for expanding your social network,...

Amazon’s union campaign is succeeding where other unions failed

Amazon warehouse workers in Bessemer, Alabama, are currently voting by mail on whether or not to form a union. Their campaign against one of the world's most powerful -- and most anti-union -- corporations has captured public imagination, and inspired young activists, in a way that hasn't happened in almost a century.    1. The President and VP...

It's the beginning of the end of the 'Uberisation' of work

Founded as an upmarket limousine service in California just over a decade ago, Uber today provides cheap taxi rides in thousands of cities across the world. The company has consistently maintained that it is merely a ridesharing platform – which, crucially, means that it does not employ its drivers.  The freedom to choose when and where to work, Uber...

The world's first driverless water taxi has been built in Tennessee

Α month ago Don Βutler hopped on board a modular pontoon boat with four other guys for a ride along the Knoxville side of the Tennessee river. It was a sweet day; cloudy, but balmy. The boat speed went up to four knots, and its passengers traveled for a total of ten minutes up the river, and then for another ten minutes back down to the marina. The...

Banks are turning to TikTok to teach teens about finance

Students are graduating with an average of $5,000 in credit card debt and $30,000 in student loans. Meanwhile, 34% of teens are currently unbanked, only 21 states teach personal finance content in schools. It’s hardly surprising that young people are turning to the internet to learn about taxes, investing, and saving for retirement.  Gen Z has an obvious...

Face filters: the new way to consume contemporary art

Since Snapchat’s launch in 2011, editing your photos with a filter has been a tap away, and these filters have come a long way from the dog ears and tongue first offered to us. Almost all social media platforms have some form of photo function with AR add-ons and image editability.  Instagram now has thousands of interactive filters: quiz filters...

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