More Cuts at Meta; Bing Chat AI Now on Edge Mobile App; News App from Instagram Founders Now Open to All; Recycled Car Batteries Back Up Grid in CaliforniaPosted: February 22, 2023 Filed under: Uncategorized Leave a comment
After axing 11,000 people last fall and intimating that no more would be cut, Meta appears to be getting set for another round of layoffs. This on the heels of the announcement over the weekend that Facebook and Instagram would now have a paid verification tier That will pull in $11.99 for subscribers on the web. $14.99 if you buy using the iOS app. 9to5mac.com reports that in addition to cuts, Meta “plans to push some leaders into lower-level roles without direct reports, flattening the layers of management between Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg and the company’s interns, according to a person familiar with the matter…” The cuts are expected to number in the thousands, and will be rolling layoffs…not all occurring at once, but over the next few months.
Bing powered by ChatGPT just came out this month, and already Microsoft is expanding the AI further. According to windowscentral.com, you can now preview the AI feature via Microsoft Edge Mobile on either iOS or Android. Apparently, Microsoft envisions the new Bing and Edge apps acting as a “copilot for the web.” In the announcement about the mobile powered Edge with ChatGPT, Microsoft noted that 64% of searches occur on mobile phones. Also available in preview…the ability to add Bing to a Skype chat- so you can query it during a live session and get immediate answers right within the call. Hopefully, it won’t end up like the conversation between Captain Over and Roger in the movie ‘Airplane!’
A new news app called Artifact, built by the co-founders of Instagram, has dropped its waitlist, and is now live in the Apple App Store in most English speaking countries, and also is available on Android. Engadget.com says you will no longer need to input your phone number to use Artifact unless you create and account and move to a different device. An interesting new feature has been added, too. If you are so inclined, you can upload a list of your contacts, and see if an article has gained traction with any of your friends. Note that you won’t be able to see which friends specifically, or how many of them have read the article. Eventually, they plan to add article sharing and comment feature. It will be interesting to see if Artifact takes off…after all, the creators had some rather good success with Instagram…so much that Facebook had to buy them out!
What happens to electric vehicle battery packs when they no longer hold enough charge to meet manufacturer specs? Well, they are recycled…not into a landfill, either. Arstechnica.com reports that a company called B2U Storage Solutions has began operating a 25 megawatt-hour battery facility in California. The idea is to have the batteries push out extra power when the grid is strained, picking up the slack. Although these batteries don’t meet the car makers’ specs now, they still hold 65-85% of their original capacity. In their new life as grid-level storage, the batteries don’t have the numerous charge and discharge cycles, so they should last even longer than they did in their original life inside vehicles. B2U Storage Solutions is working with car makers to recycle parts of the packs when they finally get to the end of their second life, too.
I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now.