The Download: CRISPR crops, and busting renewables myths

The Download: CRISPR crops, and busting renewables myths

This is right now’s version of The Download, our weekday publication that gives a each day dose of what’s occurring on this planet of know-how.

How CRISPR might assist save crops from devastation brought on by pests

For a long time, the grape-growers of California have battled Pierce’s Disease, a nasty an infection which causes vines to wither. The arrival of an invasive insect across the late ‘80s supercharged the unfold of the illness, turning it from a nuisance to a nightmare.

The illness nonetheless has no treatment, and it’s liable to getting worse attributable to local weather change. But an unlikely answer has arrived within the type of CRISPR gene-editing know-how, which permits researchers to vary the pest’s genome in order that it may not unfold the bacterium. Read the full story.

—Emma Foehringer Merchant

Busting three myths about supplies and renewable vitality

When it involves renewable vitality, there are specific myths which might be troublesome to shake. The uncooked supplies we have to battle local weather change are sometimes discovered on the middle of among the most pervasive untruths or misunderstandings.

Our local weather reporter Casey Crownhart dove into three of the most important myths linked to local weather change-combatting supplies and renewable energy—demonstrating simply how essential it’s to disregard the hype, and comply with the science. Read the full story.

Casey’s story is from The Spark, her weekly vitality and local weather publication. Sign up to obtain it in your inbox each Wednesday.

The must-reads

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

1 Remember Amazon’s drone supply program?
It’s nonetheless struggling to take off. (The Information $)

2 These movies present how Iran violently suppresses protests
Security forces are beating and opening hearth on civilians. (WP $)
+ Thousands of demonstrators proceed to rail in opposition to authorities, although. (WSJ $)

3 Whisper is ChatGPT’s quieter cousin
The accuracy of the transcription mannequin, additionally made by OpenAI, is near-perfect. (New Yorker $)
+ ChatGPT is launching a subscription tier for $20 a month. (Gizmodo)
+ Microsoft’s wasted no time integrating ChatGPT into Teams. (Reuters)
+ OpenAI is an actual breeding floor for AI expertise. (The Information $)
People are already utilizing ChatGPT to create exercise plans. (MIT Technology Review)

4 The essential position satellites will play in house warfare
They accumulate knowledge to disclose rivals’ places and weapons programs. (Wired $)
+ How to battle a conflict in house (and get away with it) (MIT Technology Review)

5 Instagram’s founders have launched a AI-aggregated information app
They imagine Artifact can bust the information echo chambers popularized by Twitter. (FT $)

6 We don’t totally understand how psychedelics can alter our brains 
All the extra motive to train warning earlier than you develop your thoughts. (The Atlantic $)
+ Mind-altering substances are being overhyped as marvel medication. (MIT Technology Review)

7 Are you able to really feel the metaverse?
Haptic tech is the subsequent step to creating immersive experiences extra life-like. (Economist $)
+ Meanwhile, Meta’s metaverse labs are nonetheless hemorrhaging cash. (Insider $)

8 Forget 3D-printers, this can be a 3D-printing manufacturing facility
It’s all about scale, child. (Bloomberg $)
+ Meet the designers printing homes out of salt and clay. (MIT Technology Review)

9 Voice-dictated textual content messages are riddled with errors
Goof duck deciphering them! (WSJ $)

10 TikTok’s ‘fortunate lady syndrome’ is simply one other time period for manifesting 🍀

Gen Z has found the facility of optimistic considering. (Vox)
+ Tiktok’s ‘darkish psychology’ pattern sounds lots like gaslighting to me. (Vice)

Quote of the day

“Privacy has been extinguished. It is now a zombie.”

—Shoshana Zuboff, professor emerita at Harvard Business School, highlights a similarity between western tech giants and China’s surveillance state in an interview with the Financial Times.

The huge story

How megacities could lead on the battle in opposition to local weather change

April 2021

In 2050, 2.5 billion extra folks will stay in cities than do right now. As the world grows extra urbanized, many cities have gotten extra populous whereas additionally making an attempt to scale back carbon emissions and blunt the impacts of local weather change.

In the approaching a long time, cities shall be engines of financial progress. But they need to additionally play a key position in confronting local weather change. Learn how among the world’s largest cities—referred to as megacities—are rising to this problem. Read the full story.

—Gabrielle Merite & Andre Vitorio

We can nonetheless have good issues

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

  • Atlas has fallen—and I’m cackling on the blooper reel (thanks Will!)
    + Don’t fear if your property’s trying a bit untidy as of late, even the queen of unpolluted Marie Kondo is easing off on the dusting.
    + These exhibitions are nicely value trotting the globe for.
    + I’m determined to go to this breathtaking sea serpent sculpture on a French seaside. 
    + This cat is a few form of well-hydrated genius.



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