10 things in tech you need to know today

Verkada camera security surveillance system

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1. Hackers breached security company Verkada. They gained access to 150,000 cameras inside places such as Tesla, Cloudflare, hospitals, and jails.

2. Twitter’s CEO will donate the proceeds from auctioning off the first-ever tweet. Jack Dorsey said he will convert the proceeds — the highest bid is currently at more than $US2 ($3) million — to bitcoin, then donate them to Give Directly’s Africa Response. Here’s what else you should know about the sale.

3. Amazon has more than 800 people working on its secretive “Vesta” home robot — but not everyone is confident in the project. The robot is expected to be an Alexa-powered, home-roaming device with multiple cameras and a screen. Insiders say they’re worried it could be another Fire Phone-style failure.

4. Biden is stacking his administration with antitrust activists. The move signals his intent to crack down on Big Tech. These are a few of his recent and upcoming nominations.

5. People are buying and selling crypto collectibles in a $US250 ($324)-million market. Investments in non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, rose 299% in 2020. This is what you need to know about the sites that are selling everything from cryptokitties to virtual real estate.

6. Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan poured $US4.2 ($5) million into a jobs program for Hawaii residents. The Rise to Work program will help residents of the Kauai county where the couple owns a controversial $US100 ($130)-million compound.

7. Jeff Bezos was so happy with Amazon’s logo, he said anyone who disliked it “won’t like puppies.” When the CEO saw the company’s potential new smile logo in 1999, he knew it was the one, a recent report states.

8. Instagram algorithms are pushing anti-vaxx and QAnon posts. According to the Center for Countering Digital Hate, the app’s “Explore” and “Suggested Posts” features pointed to conspiratorial content. Read more here.

9, Analytics startup ThoughtSpot just raised $US20 ($26) million from $US60 ($78) billion Snowflake. While ThoughtSpot plans to go public in an IPO soon, it wants to reach these three goals first.

10. These are the 19 media startups that VCs say are poised to take off in 2021. Some of the industry’s top VCs have put their weight behind buzzy audio-only chat rooms like Clubhouse and virtual-event platforms. We asked which startups they’re bullish on, and these were their picks.


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Compiled by Jordan Erb. Tips/ comments? Email [email protected] or tweet @JordanParkerErb.

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