The Obtain: Twitter’s consumer exodus, and fixing bridges


That is immediately’s version of The Obtain, our weekday e-newsletter that gives a every day dose of what’s happening on the planet of know-how.

Twitter could have misplaced greater than one million customers since Elon Musk took over

The information: Within the days since Elon Musk confirmed his buy of Twitter on October 27, tweeting “the fowl is freed,” many Twitter customers have threatened to depart. However whereas individuals usually fail to observe via on threats to stop Twitter, new knowledge suggests {that a} important variety of customers actually are abandoning the platform.

How they did it: The agency Bot Sentinel, which tracks habits on Twitter, believes that round 877,000 accounts have been deactivated and an additional 497,000 have been suspended between October 27 and November 1. That’s greater than double the same old quantity.

Why it issues: Anecdotal proof from social media suggests that individuals upset with Elon Musk buying Twitter are following via and deciding to deactivate their accounts in protest. In the event that they proceed to take action en masse, that might come to be a major downside for the platform—and its new proprietor. Learn the complete story.

—Chris Stokel-Walker

Smartphone knowledge from drivers may assist spot when bridges want pressing repairs

Smartphones might be used to watch the protection of bridges way more rapidly and cheaply than at present attainable, offering engineers with knowledge they’ll use to repair the constructions earlier than they turn out to be dangerously unstable.

Normally, bridges’ state of restore is monitored both via visible inspection for cracks and faults, or sensors amassing their vibration and motion knowledge. However a brand new methodology developed by researchers at West Level Navy Academy and different universities sidesteps the necessity for both by amassing accelerometer knowledge from smartphones in vehicles as they drive over bridges. Learn the complete story.

—Tammy Xu

Right here’s how customized mind stimulation may deal with despair

Sending a jolt of electrical energy via an individual’s mind can do outstanding issues. You solely have to observe the movies of individuals with Parkinson’s illness who’ve electrodes implanted of their brains. They will go from struggling to stroll to confidently striding throughout a room actually on the flick of a swap.

We’d have the ability to use an identical strategy to carry our moods—one thing that might be life altering for individuals with issues like despair. And we’re not simply speaking about normal mind zaps—the purpose is to create customized gadgets that observe your mind exercise and optimize it. Learn the complete story.

—Jessica Hamzelou

This story is from The Checkup, our new weekly e-newsletter overlaying all the things it’s good to know that’s happening on the planet of healthcare and biotech. Join to obtain it in your inbox each Thursday.

EmTech 2022

This week, MIT Know-how Overview held our annual EmTech convention, our flagship occasion overlaying rising know-how and international developments.

Take a look at our liveblogs overlaying the 2 days of fascinating discussions with international changemakers, innovators, and trade veterans, as we attempt to unpick what’s possible, believable, and attainable with tomorrow’s breakthrough applied sciences.

Day one targeted on among the thrilling applied sciences promising to alter our lives, together with clear power and CRISPR, whereas the second day unpacked what the longer term holds for the web, augmented actuality, physique tech, and AI.

The must-reads

I’ve combed the web to seek out you immediately’s most enjoyable/necessary/scary/fascinating tales about know-how.

1 Shadowy algorithms are calling the pictures in Washington, DC 
And the overwhelming majority of residents don’t have a clue about them, or how they work. (Wired $)
+ How the pandemic bolstered China’s surveillance state. (Slate)
+ Marseille’s battle towards being spied upon. (MIT Know-how Overview)

2 What Mark Zuckerberg has taught Elon Musk
The one fixed between the 2 corporations? Sad employees. (NYT $)
+ L’Oréal has paused its promoting spend on Twitter. (FT $)
+ Musk is trying to spark a battle between Twitter factions. (Motherboard)
+ Right here’s why Twitter customers ought to, sadly, put together for the worst. (The Atlantic $)

3 Republican midterm candidates are pushing Cease the Steal lies
Simply because the narrative isn’t true doesn’t cease it from resonating. (Bloomberg $)
+ Swing voters are extra highly effective than ever. (NY Magazine $)

4 What is going to it take to manage area? 🌌
One factor’s clear—it gained’t be straightforward. (Vox)

5 World leaders should settle for that they’ve did not curb local weather change
The 1.5°C Paris settlement is now not sufficient—we want motion, and quick. (Economist $) 
+ Scientists are questioning the sector’s greatest oversight group. (FT $)
+ We should essentially rethink “net-zero” local weather plans. (MIT Know-how Overview)

6 What it’s like inside a Chinese language covid detention heart 
All-night lights, strict routines, and limitless mud. (FT $)
+ Vietnam desires to steal China’s tech manufacturing crown. (Remainder of World)

7 Social media wasn’t prepared for photographs of early pregnancies
However taking a look at them is crucial for sincere abortion conversations. (The Verge)
+ The cognitive dissonance of watching the top of Roe unfold on-line. (MIT Know-how Overview)

8 Loving the conspiracy theorist in your life may be powerful
Treating them with compassion might help to bridge the divide. (The Atlantic $)
+ The way to discuss to conspiracy theorists—and nonetheless be type. (MIT Know-how Overview)

9 The heartbreak of a really trendy breakup
Agonizing over whether or not to dam your ex on Instagram simply prolongs the ache. (The Guardian)  

10 The way to mannequin the opposite planets we may name residence 🪐
The simulations are a part of the search to seek out alien life. (Quanta Journal)
+ A brand new supply of high-energy cosmic neutrinos has been found. (New Scientist $)

Quote of the day

“We’re all working for the Trump White Home.” 

—A disgruntled Twitter employee describes what it’s prefer to work below the brand new Elon Musk regime to the Washington Publish.

The large story

I requested my college students to show of their cell telephones and write about dwelling with out them

December 2019

A couple of years in the past, Ron Srigley, a author who teaches at Humber School and Laurentian College, carried out an experiment in a philosophy class he was educating. His college students had failed a take a look at reasonably badly, and he had a hunch that their pervasive use of cell telephones and laptops at school was partly accountable. 

He provided them additional credit score if they might give him their telephones for 9 days and write about dwelling with out them. Twelve college students—a couple of third of the category—took up the provide. What they wrote was outstanding, and remarkably constant. Learn the complete story.

We will nonetheless have good issues

A spot for consolation, enjoyable and distraction in these bizarre occasions. (Bought any concepts? Drop me a line or tweet ’em at me.)

+ These stunning houses constructed into cliffs aren’t for the faint of coronary heart.
+ Weighing a child emperor penguin is tougher than you’d anticipate.
+ I do know Halloween is over, however these spooky tales are too good not
+ Hear me out: eels are cool.
to share.
+ It’s not simply you—loads of individuals really feel nostalgic for locations they’ve by no means been.


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