Tuesday, August 9, 2022

The Download: dodging China’s porn ban, and a crypto fraud first

Must read


1 The US has charged people in the first crypto insider trading case
A former product manager at Coinbase, his brother, and their friend, are accused of wire fraud. (NBC)
That’s bad news for Coinbase. (Quartz)
Investors are still doing crypto deals—they’re just raising the bar for who gets funding. (The Information $)
+ Extreme heat in Texas is stirring opposition to energy-guzzling crypto miners. (NBC)
A blockchain-based carbon offset company started a forest fire in Spain. (Vice
Crypto is weathering a bitter storm. Some still hold on for dear life. (MIT Technology Review)
 
2 Amazon now wants to be your doctor, too 🩺 
It’s planning to acquire primary care and telehealth company One Medical for nearly $4 billion. (Recode)
Nervous? You should be. (WP $)
 
3 The US has reported its first polio case in a decade
The unvaccinated young adult who contracted it has now developed paralysis. (AP)
Biden has tested positive for covid. (NYT $)
 
4 Facebook is going to shove more videos into people’s feeds
Its midlife crisis continues. (The Verge)
Snap reported earnings so bad yesterday that they wiped $69 billion from social media company stocks. (Bloomberg $)
 
5 Inside Ukraine’s open source war
Digital networks are helping Ukraine resist the Russian invasion. (FT $)
Activists are targeting Russians with open-source “protestware”. (MIT Technology Review)
 
6 Health researchers are struggling to adjust to a post-Roe US
Bans and legal uncertainty are already making it harder for them to do their jobs. (Nature)
Embryonic research may become a whole lot more difficult. (Wired $)
+ YouTube has pledged to do more about abortion misinformation. (NBC)
As women’s choices disappear, more men are getting vasectomies. (Vice)
Big Tech remains silent on questions about data privacy in a post-Roe US. (MIT Technology Review)
 
7 Authors are using AI to help write their stories 🖊️
And they’re facing a whole lot of controversy along the way. (The Verge)
A college kid’s fake, AI-generated blog fooled tens of thousands. This is how he made it. (MIT Technology Review)
 
8 Now there might be too many computer chips
Factories have rapidly ramped up production over the past few months, and now sales of gadgets are slowing. (WSJ $)
 
9 How living on Mars time forces you to slow down 🕑
A NASA engineer explains what it’s like to work in another planet’s timezone. (NPR)
 
10 Use the summer slowdown to fix your inbox
A few minutes of organizing now can save you hours of stress down the line. (WP $)

Quote of the day

“These are things from the past.”

—Silvia Giuliano, 45, sums up the general mood in Europe as she points to stickers instructing people to maintain a distance of one meter on the floor of a bookstore in Rome, the New York Times reports.

The big story

The therapists using AI to make therapy better

December 2021

Therapy can have mixed results, but at its best, it can be utterly transformative. What’s crucial is delivering the right words at the right time—and that can be fiendishly difficult to figure out. Several tech start-ups are determined to try anyway, using natural-language processing to identify which parts of a conversation between therapist and client—which types of utterance and exchange—seem to be most effective at treating different disorders.

The aim is to give therapists better insight into what they do, helping experienced therapists maintain a high standard of care and helping trainees improve. Amid a global shortfall in care, an automated form of quality control could be essential in helping clinics meet demand. 



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