Tech News

How the number of guns compares to gun deaths in the US

In the wake of yet another unspeakable tragedy, in which 19 children and two teachers were murdered by a gunman in a Texas elementary school, one reason for the US’s steady stream of mass shootings seems obvious. Right-wing politicians are quick to blame video games, race, mental illness, and literally anything else but guns for …

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The Story of Abortion Pills and How They Work

The French health minister was furious. In September 1988, Claude Évin’s department had approved an abortion pill called RU-486 for sale. A world first. But now just four weeks later, under pressure from anti-abortion groups, the board of the pharmaceutical firm that made the pill—Roussel Uclaf—had voted 16 to 4 to withdraw it from the …

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Microsoft’s Code-Writing AI Points to the Future of Computers

Microsoft just showed how artificial intelligence could find its way into many software applications—by writing code on the fly. At the Microsoft Build developer conference today, the company’s chief technology officer, Kevin Scottdemonstrated an AI helper for the game Minecraft. The non-player character within the game is powered by the same machine learning technology Microsoft …

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The Download: Google’s AI cuteness overload, and America’s fight for gun control

Another month, another flood of weird, wonderful and cute images generated by an artificial intelligence. In April, OpenAI showed off its new picture-making neural network, DALL-E 2which could produce remarkable high-res images of almost anything it was asked to. Now, just a few weeks later, Google Brain has revealed its own image-making AI, called Imagen. …

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The dark secret behind those cute AI-generated animal images

It’s no secret that large models, such as DALL-E 2 and Imagen, trained on vast numbers of documents and images taken from the web, absorb the worst aspects of that data as well as the best. OpenAI and Google explicitly acknowledge this. Scroll down the Imagen website—past the dragon fruit wearing a karate belt and …

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An Amazon Warehouse Worker Takes the Fight to Shareholders

Amazon’s organizing warehouse workers have been rattling the ecommerce giant, winning union electionsand staging walkouts to agitate for better working conditions. Now, one worker is trying a novel tack. Today, Daniel Olayiwola will become the first warehouse worker in company history to present his own resolution at Amazon’s annual shareholder meeting. Earlier this year, Olayiwola …

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Researchers Made Ultracold Quantum Bubbles on the Space Station

In March 2018, researchers launched what looks like a white, cooler-sized fridge to the International Space Station. That heavy box houses a $100 million facility known as the Cold Atom Laboratory, which enables an array of atomic physics experiments to be done at freezing temperatures in the zero-g of space. With those unique conditions, scientists …

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Why the Tech Crash could be good news for The Information

On the morning of May 10, the Information published a hard-hitting story about Gopuff, a much-hyped startup competing in the much-hyped “instant delivery” industry. The company, most recently valued at $15 billion, is bleeding cash and has been struggling to raise new funding. Now, its employees are openly questioning whether its 29-year-old co-founders are in …

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