Issue 1464 - Monday 4th October, 2021

In Today's Issue

The News

Frances Haugen is the legend that gave loads of Facebook's dirty laundry to the WSJ

The person that leaked all that juicy info about Facebook to the Wall Street Journal is Frances Haugen. She revealed herself in an interview with the USA version of 60 Minutes. Frances is a data scientist who has worked at other social networks and saw some shit, but Facebook was "substantially worse" and couldn't stay quiet after seeing "person after person after person" trying to tackle this stuff inside of Facebook but got nowhere. She made copies of all the Facebook's internal research, which often conflicts with what Facebook says publicly, and handed it over to the Wall Street Journal. I have massive respect for people who do this kinda thing and stand up to Zuck and his cronies. I hope it makes a difference in the long run.

Rivian files documents for IPO & lets influencers drive its fancy electric ute

Rivian, the startup trying to be Tesla but for utes and trucks, is kicking off its IPO with an initial filing of financial info to the SEC. Nothing too surprising in it - they've spent shitloads to get their production going and don't expect to turn a profit for a while, but in the modern world of business, that's not a bad thing. Tesla is valued at over US$750b and only sells around ~1m cars a year, making it the most "valuable" automaker in the world by a huge margin. Rivian is valued at US$10b (at least, going by investments made by Amazon, Ford and others) and hasn't sold a damn thing. Going by the first hands on drives of the Rivian R1T (couple of YouTube videos over here), I dare say Rivian is set for a Tesla-style valuation, propelled by hopes and dreams for many years while they scale up.

DeFi staking protocol Compound hands out $90m by accident, founder begs for it back

Here's a funny cryptocurrency related story for ya - users of Compound, a "popular decentralized finance, or DeFi, staking protocol" (whatever the fuck that is), got a US$90m windfall because "the new Comptroller contract contains a bug, causing some users to receive far too much COMP". The founder of Compound has had to resort to begging people to send the money back, and if they didn't, their lucky fortune will be "reported as income to the IRS, and most of you are doxxed". Which is a little wink to the fact most of the money flowing through "DeFi" isn't exactly legal - otherwise who'd give a shit if the IRS is informed? You'd tell the IRS yourself and happily pay the taxes on your free money! Sounds like desperate man clawing at any option he has.

Something I Saw On The Internet

The modern internet means never logging off or saying goodbye

This old (pre-pandemic!) article from Slate reckons nobody says goodbye in an internet chat anymore. Because we are now always connected wherever we go, thanks to our pocket computers connected via an ever-present nationwide radio network, all our digital conversations are "one long, rolling conversation". Back when I was a youngin' there would be specific sessions I'd chat with friends in, on stuff like ICQ and IRC. During those sessions that was all we did, we chatted with each other. If we had to stop for whatever reason, we'd explain the absence - the good old AFK or BRB. Shit, we would even mark ourselves as online/offline/busy. If you were online it was like a little flag to say "talk to me!". Oh how times have changed.


The End

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