Tech News

Tech News and Analysis from around the web

Belle Lin / Wall Street Journal:
A profile of NYC-based Nanotronics, which has raised $162M and is making modular chipmaking plants that can be assembled on site and be functional within a year  —  From New York City, Nanotronics is building small, modular chip plants designed to be shipped anywhere

Nikkei Asia:
Huawei unveils the new MateBook X Pro, its first AI PC, running on HarmonyOS and powered by Intel Core Ultra 9, available in China from April 18 for up to ~$2K  —  MateBook X Pro features HarmonyOS and Pangu LLM, both developed in-house  —  TAIPEI — China's Huawei Technologies …

Ben Dickson / VentureBeat:
Google researchers detail a technique that gives LLMs the ability to work with text of infinite length while keeping memory and compute requirements constant  —  A new paper by researchers at Google claims to give large language models (LLMs) the ability to work with text of infinite length.

A US official says the OFAC is investigating several US and foreign companies for shipments of chips with military applications that ultimately end up in Russia  —  - US, EU increasingly concerned about Russian sanctions evasion  — US analyzing data from over 600 distributors selling to Russia

Steven Levy / Wired:
After Sam Altman and others called for AI regulation, some executives including Box CEO Aaron Levie say the US should not rush like the EU did  —  Any dreams of a sweeping AI bill out of Congress are basically a hallucination.  —  The other night I attended a press dinner hosted by an enterprise company called Box.

Marina Temkin / TechCrunch:
Source: Akamai is in advanced talks to buy Noname Security, which finds and fixes API vulnerabilities, for $500M; the startup was valued at $1B in December 2021  —  Noname Security, a cybersecurity startup that protects APIs, is in advanced talks with Akamai Technologies to sell itself for $500 million …

Wall Street Journal:
Sources: Salesforce is in advanced talks to acquire cloud data management company Informatica, whose market cap crossed $11B after its shares jumped 43% in 2024  —  Deal for data-management software firm would be among Salesforce's largest if completed  —  Salesforce is in advanced talks …

SAG-AFTRA reaches a tentative deal with major record labels, including WMG and Sony Music Entertainment, that includes protections over the use of AI  —  Hollywood performers and media professionals have reached a tentative deal with major record labels such as Warner Music Group (WMG.O) …

Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft starts testing ads inside the Start menu on Windows 11 in the Insider builds in the US, and says the app promotions can be disabled in Settings  —  Microsoft says it's starting to test ads inside the Start menu on Windows 11.  The software maker will use the Recommended section of the Start menu …

Jack Brewster / Wall Street Journal:
A case study of the creation of an AI-powered local “news” website, directed to produce partisan stories on a US Senate race; a Fiverr developer made it for $80  —  I paid a website developer to create a fully automated, AI-generated ‘pink-slime’ news site, programmed to create false political stories.

Rebecca Bellan / TechCrunch:
Tesla drops the price of its Full Self-Driving software subscription, which the company now calls FSD (Supervised), from $199 per month to $99 per month  —  Tesla has slashed the price of its Full Self-Driving (FSD) software subscription to $99 per month, down from $199 per month …

Jonathan Greig / The Record:
Palo Alto Networks alerts customers that hackers are exploiting a zero-day in its popular GlobalProtect VPN product and promises a patch by April 14  —  Cybersecurity giant Palo Alto Networks is alerting customers that a zero-day vulnerability in its firewall tool is being exploited by hackers.

Jamie Grierson / The Guardian:
As Meta lowers the minimum age for WhatsApp users from 16 to 13 in the UK and EU, after announcing the move in February, child safety groups criticize the move  —  Child safety group says Meta ‘putting profits before protecting children’, as messaging app lowers age limit from 16

Chris Dolmetsch / Bloomberg:
A US judge sentences ex-Amazon security engineer Shakeeb Ahmed to three years in prison for stealing $12.3M+ from Nirvana and another crypto exchange in 2022  —  - Shakeeb Ahmed was sentenced Friday for hacking smart contracts  — Ahmed admitted to stealing $12 million from two platforms

Ivan Mehta / TechCrunch:
Meta is testing an AI-powered search bar in Instagram to let users chat with Meta AI and discover content  —  Meta is pushing ahead with its efforts to make its generative AI-powered products available to more users.  Apart from testing Meta AI chatbot with users in countries like India on WhatsApp …

My wpidentity package now has storage.

I really want to see Civil War. Gets an amazing review in NYT.

In some ways the look of Ripley resembles Poor Things, another eclectic and lovely to look at presentation.

I just finished Ripley on Netflix, an 8-part miniseries remake of The Talented Mr. Ripley, which I remember, probably incorrectly, as a light-hearted story. There was very little to laugh about in this new version, but omg it is such a beautifully presented story. Even if you hated the plot you'd have to watch it just to see the art. And if you're Italian or love Italy, you have to watch it. Anyway now that I know all the twists and how it ends, I'm going to have to watch it again, but I might wait to recover from the experience. It is, at times, hard to watch. But oh so goooood.

Found this in my desk drawer today. Amazing the things you carry with you over the ages. I lived in an apartment building on top of a hill in the middle of a golf course, smack in the heart of Silicon Valley, if it actually had a heart, and that's debatable. All the Sand Hill Road VCs were on the other side of the hill. And one exit south on 280 was Xerox PARC, and where NeXT had its startup offices.

My 1988 driver's license.

This was the place where I started development of what became Frontier. I always wanted to do a great system level scripting thing, based on what I learned from Unix and what I loved about the graphic user interface.

It became a lot bigger than I anticipated. In the beginning it was meant to be a replacement for the Macintosh Finder, with an outliner for a file system browser, and of course a fantastic scripting ability, of the OS and of scriptable apps. I wish Apple had supported this effort but I didn't understand at the time that they couldn't. They weren't set up to let anyone but Bill and Andy make great products, even if their products weren't all that great, imho of course. You have to live with the mythology you create.

A lot of people got their first programming experience with Hypercard. I would have loved if more of them get their first experience with Frontier. Even better would have been if our products worked together, but that wasn't in the cards either.

I have a suggestion for an internet holiday.

Call it Freakout Day.

Works like this.

When you think of a pronouncement you'd like to make, write it in your favorite "tiny little text box", but before you send it, add the word "freaking" between every word in the punchline.

Like so --

The Arizona court decision won’t just have an effect on the politics of Arizona. It will have effect on the politics of the entire freaking United freaking States of freaking America.

Really impresses people. 😀

The Arizona court decision won’t just have an effect on the politics of Arizona. It will have effect on the politics of the entire freaking United freaking states of freaking America.

A piece I wrote about Doc in 2022 entitled Doc Quixote.

In an email to Doc this morning: "The web is such a huge total mess. CSS is a junk pile of reinventing that learned nothing from the ideas it was reinventing. The only reason we put up with this is the freedom we got from it. But that’s been gone for a long time. I have a feeling we’re wasting our golden years overlooking that we’re trying to get creative work done in a corporate crime scene. We won, only to have our victory enshrined by a bunch of corpy wiseasses and nazis." Doc is a very literate and quote-worthy writer, and we bring out the best from each other. So next time you see Doc thank him for me, for the creativity. We're making the best of a bad situation. It's even worse than it appears and I'm old enough to know better.

So this ticking time bomb was sitting there all the time the journalists were talking about how Biden is too old to win the election with Trump. Biden was never the issue, the issue was the freaking Supreme freaking Court.

I was closing tabs this morning and came across this sweet little test app I did when I was working on tabs. I wish there were a practical use for something like this.