Happy Friday, DawentsIT Readers! I’m DawentsIT. I’m glad we made it to the weekend.
I’m writing this from DawentsIT’s main office. Maybe you don’t want to think about the office this weekend (or any weekend). But what if your office had restaurants, a movie theater, and a hotel? In the age of remote work, some office campuses, built like small towns, find they’re gaining tenants and luring workers back.
It makes for a stark contrast to the difficulties companies like Amazon are having with return-to-work mandates. Amazon CEO Andy Jassy had some more to say about office work in his annual letter to shareholders, which you can read more about below.
My office doesn’t have a movie theater, so I’m going to settle for the free air conditioning.
Let’s Get Started:
ALL THINGS TECHNOLOGY NEWS YOU NEED TO KNOW
1.The rise of Lemon8 proves how pointless a TikTok ban would be. The US government wants to ban TikTok, but its parent company ByteDance is coming out with a new app aimed at the US market. My teammate Paayal Zaveri said the app, which has been described as a hybrid of Instagram and Pinterest, is called Lemon8 and uses the same algorithm as TikTok.
*Lemon8, launched at the end of March, was briefly the top downloaded app on the Apple Store. It remains in the Top 50 today.
*It uses the same underlying technology as TikTok. But it’s unlikely to face the same scrutiny as the social media platform, which is now facing the possibility of a ban despite its extreme popularity among Americans.
*Paayal writes that even if the US banned TikTok, Lemon8 would still exist. And if you ban both, China-linked apps like Temu and Shein are on the rise. It’s hard, from a policy standpoint, to ban them all without taking extreme measures.
In Other News:
2.Arrest made in Bob Lee killing. San Francisco Police have reportedly made an arrest over the fatal stabbing of Cash App founder Bob Lee. According to the reports, Lee appeared to have known the suspect.
3.Big Tech really wants you to go back to the office. Amazon and Apple are both trying to get more workers back to the office. Amazon CEO Andy Jassy said inventing and “riffing on ideas” is better in person. Meanwhile, Apple sent employees a survey about hybrid work.
4.A Google ads mistake cost some retailers $150,000. Agencies that manage Google ads told Insider that Google incorrectly flagged their clients’ items as counterfeit and cut them off from posting ads.
5.Some companies use AI to enact wage discrimination. A study found companies like Uber and Amazon use algorithms to pay workers doing the same job different wages.
6.Amazon releases its generative AI tools. Amazon entered the AI arms race with Bedrock, its stable of generative AI tools to rival OpenAI’s GPT-4. Customers can use Bedrock to build their own takes on the ChatGPT concept.
7.AI startup gets additional funding a week after its buzzy seed round. AI startup LangChain, just a week after announcing a $100 million seed investment, is raising as much as $25 million from venture capital giant Sequoia.
8.Google is closing some of its cafes as cost-cutting continues. Google’s Sunnyvale, California Campus will see some of its cafes offering free food to employees close “until further notice,” leaked memos said.
Odds and Ends:
9.No, that isn’t the set for “The Martian.” NASA unveiled its 3D-printed Mars habitat, where volunteers will live a year as if they were on the red planet. It has red sand, scientific equipment, and a PlayStation 4. Not even NASA can get a PlayStation 5.
10.Elon Musk’s personal AI ambitions. Elon Musk was one of the more prominent names on an open letter calling for a pause in AI development. My teammate Asia Martin points out that Musk’s position on AI is contradicted by Twitter’s investment in generative AI.
–Detractors of the call to pause AI said there’s an element of self-interest in asking for a moratorium in developing new AI models. Twitter’s recent purchase of hardware normally used to develop generative AI products shows the extent of this ambition.
–It’s unclear what Twitter plans to use its new graphics processing units (GPUs) for, but the investment shows Twitter and Musk are accelerating their push into AI.
–Musk has been critical of AI in general, and openly hostile to ChatGPT creator OpenAI, which he helped found.
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