Big Tech & Startups
Stories about tech giants, startups, and venture capital
Google Play Pass spotted in testing, provides ‘access to hundreds of premium apps’ (1 minute read)
Google first announced its Play Pass subscription last June and it is now in an active testing stage. The Play Pass will give subscribers access to hundreds of premium apps for a monthly fee. Subscribers will be able to use apps on the Play Store free of ads and in-app purchases. Games are included in the Play Pass. Some details about the Play Pass are still guarded, but the current price is $4.99 a month, with a 10 day free trial period.
Spotify’s big bet on podcasts is starting to pay off (1 minute read)
Spotify has reported that its podcast audience has grown by over 50 percent since last quarter, with its total number of premium subscribers growing by nine percent in the same period. The growth in Spotify's podcasting business suggests that its investments in acquiring podcast networks are paying off. Spotify has recently announced a multi-year podcasting deal with Higher Ground Productions, Barack and Michelle Obama's media company, which will mean exclusive podcasts for the streaming service. Despite the rise in subscriber revenue, Spotify continues to remain unprofitable.
Science & Cutting Edge Technology
Stories about scientific breakthroughs and futuristic
technologies like AI, blockchain, and space travel
LightSail 2 Spacecraft Successfully Demonstrates Flight by Light (5 minute read)
The Planetary Society's crowdfunded LightSail 2 spacecraft is successfully raising its orbit solely using the power of sunlight. In the past four days, the spacecraft has raised its orbit by about two kilometers. The mission team has confirmed the increase can only be attributed to solar sailing. An image from the LightSail 2 captured by its camera during solar sail deployment is available. The LightSail 2 will continue to raise its orbit for roughly a month, after which it will begin to deorbit, eventually reentering the atmosphere. Around 50,000 people contributed to the mission, donating the $7 million required for it to be successful. The results of the mission will be shared with other organizations so that solar sail technology can be applied to future space exploration missions.
In A 1st, Doctors In U.S. Use CRISPR Tool To Treat Patient With Genetic Disorder (8 minute read)
Doctors in the US have used CRISPR to treat a patient with Sickle cell, a disease that affects millions of people around the world. It will still be a few months before the treatment is deemed safe and can be assessed for effectiveness. Cells from the patient's own bone marrow were genetically modified with CRISPR to make them produce a protein that is usually only made by fetuses and babies. The theory is that the protein will compensate for the defective proteins that cause sickle cell disease. Trials of the new treatment are being conducted on more patients across eight sites in the US, Canada, and Europe. While the treatment shows promise in the lab, this may not be the case in real-world scenarios.
Programming, Design & Data Science
Tools, open source libraries, and other resources
for programmers, designers, and data scientsts
OverVue (GitHub Repo)
OverVue is a prototyping tool that allows developers to create and visualize a Vue application. The resulting code can be exported as a template for further development. Developers can easily edit components and generate code using a visual interface.
Android Developer Roadmap - MindOrks (GitHub Repo)
This is a roadmap for learning Android App Development. It lists core components with subtopics in each section. All the resources required to learn each section are provided through a linked course.
Random stuff techies might be interested in
1 in 5 corporations say China has stolen their IP within the last year: CNBC CFO survey (4 minute read)
In a survey of North American-based corporations on the CNBC Global CFO Council, seven out of the 23 companies surveyed say that Chinese firms have stolen from them in the past decade. The council represents nearly $5 trillion in market value across a variety of sectors. Businesses are unhappy with current US-China trade negotiations as the terms against IP theft are too relaxed. China has recently issued a memo that detailed punishments for IP violators. Trade policies are now the biggest issue in Europe, as many European businesses say that US trade policies were the biggest risk to their businesses.