The Obtain: the Saudi sci-fi megacity, and sleeping infants’ brains

That is right now’s version of The Obtain, our weekday e-newsletter that gives a every day dose of what’s occurring on the earth of know-how.

These unique satellite tv for pc photographs present Saudi Arabia’s sci-fi megacity is effectively underway

In early 2021, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia introduced The Line: a “civilizational revolution” that will home as much as 9 million folks in a zero-carbon megacity, 170 kilometers lengthy and half a kilometer excessive however simply 200 meters broad. Inside its mirrored, car-free partitions, residents could be whisked round in underground trains and electrical air taxis. 

Satellite tv for pc photographs of the $500 billion mission obtained solely by MIT Know-how Evaluate present that the Line’s huge linear constructing website is already taking form. Go to The Line’s location on Google Maps and Google Earth, nonetheless, and you will note little greater than naked rock and sand. 

The unusual hole in imagery raises questions on who will get to entry high-res satellite tv for pc know-how. And if the most important city building website on the planet doesn’t seem on Google Maps, what else can’t we see? Learn the complete story.

—Mark Harris

Why infants sleep a lot

Infants spend way more time asleep than they do awake. Scientists nonetheless aren’t precisely positive why, however new applied sciences are beginning to shed a bit extra mild on this thriller—and will assist reveal what’s going on contained in the quickly growing mind of a new child.

Throughout the first few months, infants’ brains are growing connections at a charge of roughly one million synapses a second. These connections are thought to play a key position in serving to infants be taught to make sense of the world round them, setting essential foundations for the remainder of their life. Learn the complete story

This story is from The Checkup, a weekly e-newsletter by our senior reporter Jessica Hamzelou which supplies you the low-down on all issues biomedicine and biotechnology. Enroll to obtain it in your inbox each Thursday.

The must-reads

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

1 Covid knowledge is beginning to disappear in China
It’s about to enter its deadliest part of the pandemic. How lethal? We gained’t know. (FT $)
A letter from Foxconn’s founder could have helped to influence China’s leaders to desert zero-covid. (WSJ $)
The coverage pivot has been met with aid—but additionally fear and confusion. (NYT $)
Right here’s what scientists need to say about it. (Nature)

2 AI selfies are all over the place
You may thank the app Lensa, and the actual fact folks can’t resist sharing how horny it makes them look. (WP $)
Nevertheless, it generates troublingly NSFW photographs. Even when the picture is of a kid. (Wired $)
AI is getting higher and higher at producing convincing textual content too. (Vox)
Are you able to inform an actual tweet from one written by an AI? (WSJ $)

3 People are flocking to local weather hazard zones
Migration patterns are principally away from safer areas, in the direction of hotter, drier areas with extra wildfires. (Wired $)
These three charts present who’s most guilty for local weather change. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

4 A lawsuit claims ladies had been focused for Twitter layoffs
In engineering roles, 63% of girls misplaced their jobs in comparison with 48% of males. (NBC)
Musk’s plan to encrypt Twitter messages appears to be on maintain. (Forbes)
+ Twitter is planning to vary the price of ‘Twitter Blue’ after a spat with Apple. (The Data $)
Elon Musk is brazenly courting a far-right, conspiracy obsessed fan base. (Wired $)

5 CoinDesk’s FTX scoop shot its personal mum or dad firm within the foot
Possession buildings in crypto are advanced—and on this case, a bit too cozy for consolation. (The Verge)
+ Crypto execs exchanged frantic texts as FTX collapsed. (NYT $)

6 Exhausted by the web? You’re not alone.
It’s starting to really feel like a dying mall stuffed with shops you don’t wish to go to. (New Yorker $)
Amazon is launching a TikTok clone. Sure, Amazon. (WP $)

7 The hype round esports is fading
A wider financial downturn is inflicting sponsors and traders to flee. (Bloomberg $)
The FTC is making an attempt to dam Microsoft’s $69 billion acquisition of online game large Activision Blizzard. (Vox)

8 What causes Alzheimer’s?
A stream of latest findings counsel that it’s extra advanced than the build-up of amyloid plaques. (Quanta)
The miracle molecule that would deal with mind accidents and enhance your fading reminiscence. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

9 The worldwide adware business has spiraled uncontrolled
And the US is taking part in each arsonist and firefighter, adopting the exact same instruments it condemns. (NYT $)
It’s laborious to regulate adware know-how when it’s in such excessive demand from governments world wide. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

10 Xiaomi taught a robotic to play the drums
Skilled musicians can relaxation simple for now although, if the demo clip is something to go by. (IEEE Spectrum)

Quote of the day

“Globalization is sort of lifeless. Free commerce is sort of lifeless. And lots of people nonetheless want they might come again, however I actually don’t assume that it will likely be again for some time.”

—Morris Chang, founding father of Taiwanese chip large TSMC, made some blunt remarks about geopolitics on the launch of a brand new plant in Arizona this week, Nikkei Asia stories.

The massive story

The way forward for city housing is energy-efficient fridges

June 2022

The growing older residences below the purview of the New York Metropolis Housing Authority don’t scream innovation. The biggest landlord within the metropolis, housing almost 1 in 16 New Yorkers, NYCHA has seen its buildings actually crumble after many years of deferred upkeep and poor stewardship. It might require an estimated $40 billion or extra, at the very least $180,000 per unit, to return the buildings to a state of excellent restore.

Regardless of the size of the problem, NYCHA is hoping to repair them. It has launched a Clear Warmth for All Problem which asks producers to develop low-cost, easy-to-install heat-pump applied sciences for constructing retrofits. The stakes for the company, the successful firm, and for society itself may very well be enormous—and good for the planet. 

In any case, it’s way more sustainable to retrofit current buildings than to tear them down and construct new ones. Learn the complete story.

—Patrick Sisson

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.)

+ This Photoshop comedian about changing the sky is de facto beautiful.
+ Santa Claus, Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas: no matter you name him, he’s received a lengthy and illustrious historical past
+ The best way to nail dressing neatly, but casually.
Cowboy butter, anybody?

Rahul Diyashi
News and travel at your doorstep.

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