NN196: Zuckerberg in DC; TikTok Clubs; Kindle Hacking; Doggo Lifeguards

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Photo by Scott Rodgerson on Unsplash

👋 Hi, friends. Welcome to the latest edition of Newley’s Notes, a weekly newsletter containing my recent Wall Street Journal stories, must-read links on tech and life, and funny dog videos.

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Here are ten items worth your time this week:

⚖️ 1) Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg Rebuffs Calls for Tighter Controls, Saying Free Speech Must Be Preserved [WSJ]

"In a rare policy speech that will likely stir further debate over his company’s role in politics and global social movements, Mr. Zuckerberg said he worries that “increasingly today across the spectrum, it seems like there are more people who prioritize getting the political outcomes that they want over making sure that everyone can be heard.”

Bonus take: Mark Zuckerberg Still Doesn’t Get It [New Yorker]

👩‍🎓 2) Student tracking, secret scores: How college admissions offices rank prospects before they apply [Washington Post)]

“When one student visited the site last year, the software automatically recognized who she was based on a piece of code, called a cookie, which it had placed on her computer during a prior visit. The software sent an alert to the school’s assistant director of admissions containing the student’s name, contact information and details about her life and activities on the site…”

👂 3) Google chief: I’d disclose smart speakers before guests enter my home [BBC News]

“‘Does the owner of a home need to disclose to a guest? I would and do when someone enters into my home, and it’s probably something that the products themselves should try to indicate.’”

🕺 4) High Schools to TikTok: We’re Catching Feelings [New York Times]

“The embrace of the app at this school is mirrored on scattered campuses across the United States, where students are forming TikTok clubs to dance, sing and perform skits for the app — essentially drama clubs for the digital age, but with the potential to reach huge audiences. ”

🔧 5) Kindle Hackers Are Disabling Tracking and Ads [Medium/OneZero]

“A community of amateur and seasoned hackers have figured out how to tinker with Kindles to make the experience a little more ‘theirs,’’ reconfiguring them with unapproved fonts and bypassing the ads Amazon injects into cheaper versions of the e-reader.”

⚠️ 6) Unprecedented movement detected on California earthquake fault capable of 8.0 temblor [Los Angeles Times]

“A major California fault capable of producing a magnitude 8 earthquake has begun moving for the first time on record, a result of this year’s Ridgecrest earthquake sequence destabilizing nearby faults, Caltech scientists say in a new study released in the journal Science on Thursday.”

📱 7) Using Old Cellphones to Listen for Illegal Loggers [New York Times]

“Used cellphones, powered by solar panels, upload audio data. It is analyzed in real time by artificial-intelligence software capable of distinguishing the sounds of chain saws, logging trucks and other telltale audio signatures of illegal activity. The software then sends rangers instant alerts…”

🧘‍♂️ 8) Are the Tech Bros Who ‘Dopamine Fast’ Full of Sh-t? [Mel Magazine]

“A typical dopamine fast involves abstaining from electronic devices, the internet, books and magazines, sex and masturbation, food, music, podcasts and all other stimulants. For seriously committed fasters like Sinka, it also includes drastically minimizing conversation and interaction with other people. ”

📸 9) Wildlife Photographer of the Year awards showcase remarkable animal drama [CNet]

“Chinese photographer Yongqing Bao has won the Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2019 title for The Moment, a photo showing a Tibetan fox apparently about to lunge at a startled, marmot that seems almost human.”

🆘 10) Man pretends to drown to see if his dog would save him [Reddit/r/videos]

📖 Book I’m Currently Reading

Thinking, Fast and Slow,” by Daniel Kahneman.

💡 Quote of the week:

“The reader lives faster than life, the writer lives slower.” – James Richardson

👊 Fist bump from New Delhi,

Newley

Published by Newley

Hi. I'm Newley Purnell. I cover technology and business for The Wall Street Journal. I use this site to share my stories and often blog about the books I'm reading, tech trends, sports, travel, and our dog Ginger. For updates, get my weekly email newsletter.

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