The Next Web
Original and proudly opinionated perspectives for Generation T
Social media isn’t a one-size-fits-all marketplace. This training explains it all

TLDR: The courses in The 2020 Social Media Marketing Bootcamp Certification Bundle explain how to launch effective digital campaigns to drive sales on all the top social media platforms. There’s more to being a social media expert than logging into Facebook every day or making sure you’re keeping a close eye on your Twitter mentions. True social media experts need to fully understand their target audience, where they congregate and how to connect with them effectively. And with dozens of venues and approach[..]

These ‘self-driving’ shared scooters will automatically return to base after each use

This article was originally published by Sarah Wray on Cities Today, the leading news platform on urban mobility and innovation, reaching an international audience of city leaders. For the latest updates follow Cities Today on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube, or sign up for Cities Today News. A fleet of 100 remote-controlled scooters is being piloted at the city-owned Curiosity Lab technology testing ground in Peachtree Corners, Georgia. It is understood to be the first trial of its type[..]

With a single click, Word Pigeon turns a Google Doc into WordPress website content

TLDR: Word Pigeon cleans up content creation by turning a Google Doc into a WordPress website post with just one mouse click. WordPress is usually a godsend for most people looking to build and maintain their own website. Its drag-and-drop simplicity and truckloads of customization options make it easy for almost anyone to get a site up and running, even if they’ve got no programming experience. But creating content in WordPress? That can often be a different story. Copying and pasting a post you wrote in M[..]

How cosmic rays may have sparked life on Earth — and what this could mean for life on other planets

Long before animals roamed the Earth, before the first bacteria, and even before the development of DNA, tiny molecules found they could make simple copies of themselves. Cosmic rays pouring down from space constantly bombarded those molecules as they replicated, and developed over time. These particles, raining down from distant stars and galaxies, could have played a significant role in the what would become the chemistry of life. Mirror, mirror, on the wall… Molecules can take on various shapes as they f[..]

Xbox Series X will make old games look prettier

Microsoft continues its campaign of putting out details on the Xbox Series X, and today revealed that, in addition to having backwards compatibility, the XSX will employ some techno wizardry to make the older games much better looking than they originally were. Jason Ronald, Director of Program Management for the new console, revealed in an Xbox Wire update that Microsoft’s augmenting the launch line-up of the XSX with older games. We already knew the console would be backwards compatible with games from ev[..]

Google’s Android Studio 4.0 is a major upgrade for the app development tool

Google has launched Android Studio 4.0, adding a host of new features to the app development environment. The most eye-catching of the upgrades is a souped-up Motion Editor, Android’s interface for creating MotionLayout animations in apps. In previous versions of Android Studio, developers had to manually create and modify complex XML files to design their animations. The new Motion Editor generates the XML files for you, allowing you to create complex animations through a simply click-and-drag interface. [[..]

It’s time for a sequel to The Social Network and Quentin Tarantino should direct it

Hollywood director Quentin Tarantino revealed in a recent interview that he believes The Social Network is the best film of its decade. He’s wrong. Space Boobs in Space is the best film of the 2010s. Space Boobs is a perfect film, it told the whole story. The Social Network, on the other hand, has plenty of room for improvement (2010? Ha, those were the innocent days for social media). That’s why I think it’s time for a sequel. And since Tarantino’s such a biiiig fan, he should direct. Don’t get me wrong, D[..]

Sony announces a PlayStation 5 reveal — here’s what to expect

After months of trickling out information about the PlayStation 5, Sony‘s finally putting on a show. Specifically, it’s going to reveal some of the games that’ll be available on its new console. It’s likely not going to be a console reveal, but at least it’s something. Join us Thursday, June 4 at 1:00pm Pacific time for a look at the future of gaming on PlayStation 5: https://t.co/Yr8fafcOVd #PS5 pic.twitter.com/F0yBbDmOtC — PlayStation (@PlayStation) May 29, 2020 The event will be held on June 4, a Tuesday[..]

Elon Musk just earned $780 million from Tesla — but there’s a catch

It’s a big day for Elon Musk. The enigmatic billionaire just unlocked almost $800 million worth of cheap Tesla shares — the first payout in what’s considered the largest compensation package of its kind in history. Indeed, Musk can now buy around 1.7 million Tesla shares for $350.02 each, a total cost of just over $595 million. Tesla stock opened Friday trade at $808.32, which means Musk hypothetically stands to profit around $778.6 million in just two trades. [Read: A look at the $17 billion stock portfoli[..]

Tech promised ‘disruption’ — but they’re still selling us sex

This is from Plugged In, TNW’s bi-weekly newsletter on gear and gadgets. Subscribe to it (and our other great newsletters) here. Let’s start with simple question: have you ever bought a bit of (non-erotic) tech because you thought it’d help you weasel your way into someone’s nether-regions? No, me neither. But these people must exist. Surely. I mean, what other explanation is there for LG advertizing its new phone with a TikTok highlighting its ability to snap upskirt photos? As absurd and ridiculous and fu[..]

OpenAI’s new text generator writes sad poems and corrects lousy grammar

OpenAI has quietly unveiled the latest incarnation of its headline-grabbing text generator: GPT-3. The research lab initially said its predecessor’s potential to spread disinformation made it too dangerous to share. The decision led terrified journalists to warn of impending robot apocalypses — generating a lot of helpful hype for GPT-2. Now, OpenAI has unveiled its big brother. And it’s enormous. The language model has 175 billion parameters — 10 times more than the 1.6 billion in GPT-2, which was also con[..]

Iconscout can bring new life to any web design project

TLDR: A two-year subscription to an Iconscout Unlimited Icons Plan gives you access to more than 2 million royalty-free icons to use in any of your web design projects. In one quick glance, you get it. That’s the whole purpose of an icon. If your eye can scan across a screen, find a simple recognizable symbol and instantly understand why it’s there and what it means, then your icon has done its job. Icons are key signposts pointing users to what’s important in your web page or app. Rather than having to cra[..]

China’s Xpeng ‘copies’ Tesla’s website after allegedly ‘stealing’ Autopilot source code

Chinese carmakers taking too much inspiration from western brands isn’t exactly a new phenomenon, but one China-based EV maker has zero-chill and is now even copying Tesla‘s web design. [Read: UK automotive production at lowest level since WW2, to cost industry $15B] Spotted by an unnamed individual, who then tipped off Electrek, Xpeng appears to be copying Tesla‘s website design. I say appears, but take a look a the screenshots below and decide for yourself. The similarities are clear. Putting the actual v[..]

Chrome moves to automatically block abusive notification requests

You won’t have to endure annoying notification popups from random sites when using Chrome for much longer. Google has announced it’s cracking down on sites that abuse notifications starting from Chrome 84, which will drop on July 14. Sites with intrusive notifications and permission requests will be filtered under a “quieter notifications UI,” which will also warn users that the site might be trying to trick them. “Abusive notification prompts are one of the top user complaints we receive about Chrome. A la[..]

Google Maps data shows which European countries took lockdown most seriously

A substantial part of humanity is slowly emerging from weeks of lockdown. What we have experienced is truly rare: a real global threat, menacing to all wherever we lived. But how did humanity respond to this pandemic? Did people consistently stay at home as most governments asked them to? And if they didn’t, where did they go? We can answer these questions thanks to Google. It has released data on people’s movements gathered from millions of mobile devices that use its software (Android, Google Maps and so [..]

How cosmologists finally found the ‘missing’ half of our universe’s matter

In the late 1990s, cosmologists made a prediction about how much ordinary matter there should be in the universe. About 5%, they estimated, should be regular stuff with the rest a mixture of dark matter and dark energy. But when cosmologists counted up everything they could see or measure at the time, they came up short. By a lot. The sum of all the ordinary matter that cosmologists measured only added up to about half of the 5% what was supposed to be in the universe. This is known as the “missing baryon p[..]

Satoshi Nakaboto: ‘Winklevoss deal brings BTC trade to Samsung users in US and Canada’

Our robot colleague Satoshi Nakaboto writes about Bitcoin every fucking day. Welcome to another edition of Bitcoin Today, where I, Satoshi Nakaboto, tell you what’s been going on with Bitcoin in the past 24 hours. As Stephen Hawking used to say: Let’s get this bread! Bitcoin price We closed the day, May 28 2020, at a price of $9,525. That’s a respectable 3.71 percent increase in 24 hours, or $340. It was the highest closing price in eight days. We’re still 52 percent below Bitcoin‘s all-time high of $20,089[..]

UK automotive production at lowest level since WW2, to cost industry $15B

With auto factories closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, it’s clear that production was going to take a hit. Now we know just how big an impact it had in the UK. In the month of April, carmakers based in the United Kingdom produced 197 premium or luxury vehicles, just 45 of these actually made it to customers. That’s a 99.7% drop compared to the same time period last year, BBC reports. [Read: CVS is testing driverless vehicles in Houston for safe, socially distanced medical deliveries] According to the S[..]

How coronavirus is reshaping the mobility industry, from EVs to supply chains

The current crisis is first and foremost humanitarian, with 300k casualties to date worldwide and massive joblessness. It is also economic, with almost all companies having financial difficulties and many collapsing. However, a few sectors are currently booming (e.g. deliveries), some will benefit from a crisis-induced tailwind, while others will continue to suffer for years to come. Many countries are still largely shut down, while others are re-opening. Economies are initiating a reboot. Depending on the [..]

CVS is testing driverless vehicles in Houston for safe, socially distanced medical deliveries

Self-driving vehicle startup Nuro announced yesterday that it will deliver medical prescriptions autonomously to residents in parts of one Texas city. It could be a boon for the health and safety of those made even more vulnerable because of the coronavirus pandemic. According to a company announcement, Nuro will partner with CVS, one of America’s biggest pharmacy chains, to deliver prescriptions to customers in a “pilot area,” which is made up of three zip codes in Houston, Texas. [Read: Uber scraps thousa[..]

How to convince your boss to let you work from home — forever!

If you’re reading this it’s likely you’ve transitioned from an office-based role into remote working full-time due to the coronavirus pandemic. And while I’m not advocating for you to continue working from home or stating that the future of work will be fully remote, I think it’s important for employees to have the choice. So, if you’ve fallen in love with working from home over the past few months and would like this to be part of your “new normal,” here’s how you should communicate your wishes to your bos[..]

Twitter hides Trump’s Minnesota tweet, saying it ‘glorifies violence’

Twitter has just hidden US President Donald Trump‘s tweet about the situation in Minnesota, saying it “glorified violence.” The company didn’t delete the tweet as it thought “it may be in the public interest for the tweet to remain accessible.” In the tweet, Trump was addressing civil unrest in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and threatened that law enforcement would open fire in response. This comes hours after Trump signed an executive order that holds social media companies liable for content hosted on their pla[..]

What CSS developers do and why you need one

CSS developers are web professionals whose primary responsibility is to deliver a polished and styled product to the visitor’s browser. Practically every website uses CSS, but CSS is often not considered an “equal” in the modern web development stack. Unfortunately, this misperception can lead to CSS being taken for granted, or even overlooked to some extent. Allowing non-CSS developers to deal with CSS often results in the introduction of CSS hacks and bugs in your code, and can cause unnecessary frustrati[..]

How to avoid stereotypes when designing for global markets

Did you know we have an online conference about product design coming up? SPRINT will cover how designers and product owners can stay ahead of the curve in these unprecedented times. Hello, Bonjour, Hola, 你好, Guten Tag, こんにちは, Привет, Merhaba, Jó Napot, Здраво! Designers at global companies frequently work with geographically distributed teams. We also regularly work on digital products designed for global consumption for clients located all over the world. Yet designers, forgetting there’s a wider world ou[..]

Twitter now lets you schedule tweets — here’s how

Welcome to TNW Basics, a collection of tips, guides, and advice on how to easily get the most out of your gadgets, apps, and other stuff. Earlier this month, we reported that Twitter is rolling out a ‘schedule tweet’ option to some users. Now, the social network is making the feature available for all desktop users, so you can set tweets to be published at a time of your choosing. The company said that apart from scheduling, it will also allow users to it will also let you save drafts of your tweets in the [..]

How to start a Google Meet session from Gmail

Welcome to TNW Basics, a collection of tips, guides, and advice on how to easily get the most out of your gadgets, apps, and other stuff. Google has added a feature to Gmail that went missing with the death of Hangouts: namely, the ability for anyone to start a Meet video call right from your inbox. Here’s how it works. Google recently made Meet available free for everyone in the wake of the coronavirus — it’d previously only been available to its business and education G Suite users. The move is just as mu[..]

Donald Trump is threatening to punish Twitter. Here’s why everyone should take this seriously

US President Donald Trump is expected to sign an executive order on Thursday afternoon declaring social media companies to be broadcasters (as opposed to carriers). While the exact language of the EO has yet to be revealed, an alleged draft has circulated on social media throughout the day. If what we’re seeing is close to the final order, it’s safe to say there will be huge ramifications for the tech community and the billions of us who use social media regularly. For your reading pleasure, here’s the draf[..]

YouTube finally adds built-in timestamps with ‘Chapters’

One of the most annoying things about YouTube is trying to find the right time for the specific content you’re looking for, especially in long videos. It’s become something of a tradition for a good samaritan to comment with the requisite timestamps, but YouTube is now making such crude methods a thing of the past. Starting today, YouTube is officially rolling out a ‘Chapters‘ feature that lets creators embed timestamps right into the video progress bar. 0:00 We heard you and added Video Chapters.0:30 You l[..]

Hulu is testing an official Watch Party feature (for some viewers)

In this era of social distancing, online watch parties — watching online content in sync with friends — have become commonplace, but doing so usually requires specialized third party services. It seems that might start to change; Hulu is now testing an official Watch Party feature of its own. Unfortunately, it’s currently only available on the desktop. No mobile apps, no TV apps. Worse, it’s only available to users who are signed up for Hulu‘s ‘No ads’ tier. Considering I don’t know anyone who actually pays[..]

TNW Pride 2020: Why queer representation is so important for STEM

It’s (almost) time! Welcome to 🏳️🌈TNW Pride 2020🏳️🌈. We’ll be covering tech-related Pride stories and putting a much needed spotlight on the LGBTQPIA+ STEM community and its history all throughout the month of June. If you’d like to contribute, find details below. I’m a 42-year-old queer technology journalist and the editor of Neural. This is my first job working in the tech industry. Just a few years back I was an almost 40-year-old intern. Before that, I worked in several different fields including a [..]

Instagram finally offers creators a chance to get paid

Instagram today revealed that, at long last, it’s rolling out a few ways for its creators to earn money directly from their posts. The platform is currently testing both ads for IGTV and a subscription service for those who use Instagram Live. It’s a start, at least. Ads on IGTV have been in the works for a few months now — we first heard of them back in February. The ads will be about 15 seconds long, and will appear after you click the “Watch IGTV Video” button from a preview. The company will test variou[..]

Google Maps makes it easier to share your location with Plus Codes — no address required

When you need to give someone your location, you usually point them to an address. Here in NYC, you often point them to an intersection instead. But sometimes an address is just difficult to find — or you don’t have one at all. For those purposes, Google introduced Plus codes five years ago, allowing you to share your location in a short alphanumerical format, whether you simply can’t find an address or are in the middle of nowhere. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem they were actually used all that much, so no[..]

Bitcoin vs. NASDAQ 100: Watch them thrive during the pandemic

It’s now clear that the coronavirus pandemic made the world’s most powerful tech companies even stronger, but what if Bitcoin was a tech stock? Apple and Microsoft retained their trillion-dollar market caps through the ups and downs of the greater stock market, and worldwide lockdowns even helped both Alphabet and Amazon secure access to the exclusive cuatro comma club for the very time time. In fact, the NASDAQ 100 index — a popular benchmark that tracks the market performance of the US’ largest tech compa[..]

US joins G7 AI alliance to counter China’s influence

The US is joining the rest of the G7 in the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence, in an effort to contain China‘s influence on AI. The initiative was launched in 2019 to build a consensus on AI ethics, but has made little impact since — partly because the US initially refused to join. White House officials feared the group would damage US tech firms, even though its recommendations aren’t legally binding and it can’t regulate private companies. Cédric O, France’s digital affairs minister, had warne[..]

Devious Call of Duty pranksters are building shitty guns to fool players in Warzone

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare‘s battle royale format, Warzone, is all the rage these days. Casual gamers love it, hardcores love it, I love it, everybody loves it. But a new in-game prank is about to catch a few poor saps completely off-guard — and it’s already claimed victims. Any Warzone enthusiast knows having the right loadout — a custom-made set of guns and perks (or special skills) — can tremendously increase your chances of winning. That’s why a band of Reddit tricksters are trying to design the worst[..]

Working from home is great — until your co-workers show up

Boris is the wise ol’ CEO of TNW who writes a weekly column on everything about being an entrepreneur in tech — from managing stress to embracing awkwardness. You can get his musings straight to your inbox by signing up for his newsletter! Many people are now struggling with adjusting to working from home, but I’ve always been a big fan of WFH. Way back in the day, I even started my second company in my spare bedroom — with employees and everything! The company was a wireless hotspot operator and we didn’t [..]

How tech is defying death and turning our loved ones into Alexa-powered chatbots

TNW Answers is a live Q&A platform where we invite interesting people in tech who are much smarter than us to answer questions from TNW readers and editors for an hour. What if death wasn’t so final? What if the life of a family member could live on with the help of artificial intelligence? No, I’m not talking about that episode of Black Mirror, I’m talking about HereAfter, a conversational AI platform that creates interactive, life-story sharing chatbots, accessible through Amazon Alexa with the actual rec[..]

Why Gary Vaynerchuk’s 12 hour TikTok telethon revealed a gentler side

In 2019, I was fortunate to interview Gary Vaynerchuk in Las Vegas and Armenia after he performed keynotes at a smorgasbord of tech conferences. I nodded in all the right places as he talked about a future dominated by tech that would pave the way for virtual conferences, concerts, and remote working. On the subject of podcasts, Vaynerchuk told me, “Joe Rogan is going to eventually sign a $100 million-plus deal to go exclusive on a platform because of the level of attention he has.” We all know what happene[..]

How Baidu’s AI produces news videos using just a URL

AI for news production is one of the areas that has drawn contrasting opinions. On one hand, it might help media houses produce more news in a better format with minimal effort, on the other hand, it might take away the human element of journalism or take people out of jobs. In 2018, an AI anchor developed by China’s Xinhua news agency made its debut. Earlier this month, the agency released an improved version that mimics human voices and gestures. There’s been advancement in AI with text-based news with al[..]

How the Dutch government uses data to predict the weather and prepare for natural disasters

Have you ever wondered what’s behind the weather forecast TV reports? Or who is managing government satellites? Perhaps you’ve wandered across a sensor — where does that data go? In the Netherlands, that data is collected and managed by the KNMI, or the Koninklijk Nederlands Meteorologisch Instituut — a.k.a., the government’s meteorological branch. The KNMI forecasts weather, researches climate change, and monitors seismic activity. Their reach goes far beyond the Netherlands. In 2017, the KNMI-built TROPOM[..]

Freelancing could be the way forward for thousands of Americans. Here are some points to consider

TLDR: Want to work doing what you love as a freelance professional? The Kickstart Your Freelance Career Course Bundle has some ideas for making that happen. If your time at home the past 10 weeks or so has made you appreciate the idea of never fighting traffic or trudging into the office every again…you aren’t alone. This WFH era has started the wheels spinning for thousands of Americans about the type of day-to-day work life we’d each enjoy. Of course, most freelancers have been big fans of the remote work[..]

This tool helps you send emails directly to the recipient’s spam box

A fundamental part of living life as a good human being™ is learning how to be amicably passive-aggressive — or put in other words, unnoticeably mean and cruel when necessary. A good example is party invitations. Every once in a while you’ll meet a person you feel the need to invite, but genuinely don’t want to be around. Should you go through the risk of being confronted about a skipped invitation or should you just send the invite, and hope they don’t show up? Someone has created a better solution. Enter [..]

3 possible scenarios for restoring public transport after COVID-19

The Dutch bike-transit system should be our guide to not only encourage public transport use, but to also make it more efficient and attractive by offering higher frequency service with even better coverage. How is that possible? As we seem to be reaching the light at the end of the COVID-19 quarantine tunnel, many of us question what this might mean for mobility, and particularly, for public transport. The lockdown has generally had the same impact all around the world: car journeys fell 50–80% and public [..]

Satoshi Nakaboto: ‘Bitcoin is a bad investment according to Goldman Sachs’

Our robot colleague Satoshi Nakaboto writes about Bitcoin every fucking day. Welcome to another edition of Bitcoin Today, where I, Satoshi Nakaboto, tell you what’s been going on with Bitcoin in the past 24 hours. As Baudriallard used to say: Let’s get this bread! Bitcoin price We closed the day, May 27 2020, at a price of $9,181. That’s a respectable 3.88 percent increase in 24 hours, or $343. It was the highest closing price in three days. We’re still 54 percent below Bitcoin‘s all-time high of $20,089 (D[..]

AI algorithms are puzzled by our online behavior during the coronavirus pandemic

At some point, every one of us has had the feeling that online applications like YouTube, Amazon, and Spotify seem to know us better than ourselves, recommending content that we like even before we say it. At the heart of these platforms’ success are artificial intelligence algorithms—or more precisely, machine learning models—that can find intricate patterns in huge sets of data. Corporations in different sectors leverage the power of machine learning along with the availability of big data and compute res[..]

How to supercharge your team’s brainstorming sessions with sci-fi narratives

Attempting to predict and prepare for the future can be an arduous and alarming task for any entrepreneur or business. It may seem as though the risks are more prevalent than the opportunities, and it’s easy to get hung up on what could go wrong. It’s also difficult to break out of existing paradigms and imagine how things could be different. One antidote to this self-defeating thinking style is to engage the power of science fiction. Sci-fi is an incredible way to free up the imagination and construct alte[..]

Shifting to electric transport is still a game changer — even if it’s not charged by renewable energy

New Zealand is indeed well supplied with renewable electricity. In recent years, New Zealand has averaged 83% from renewable sources (including 60% hydropower, 17% geothermal, and 5% wind) and 17% from fossil fuels (4% coal and 13% gas). In addition to being cheap and renewable, hydropower has another great advantage. Its production can ramp up and down very quickly (by turning the turbines on and off) during the day to match demand. Looking at a typical winter’s day (I’ve taken July 4, 2018), demand at 3am[..]

9 tips to help you negotiate the salary you want

If you’re starting a new job or looking to grow in your current role, negotiating a salary rise can be extremely awkward and daunting — but it doesn’t have to be. Even if you were once happy with your current salary, the time will come again when the value of the work you do isn’t reflected in the compensation you receive. When this time comes, it’s important to be prepared and strategize your next move. You need to build an objective, evidence-based case that supports your desired package and start thinkin[..]

Uber scraps thousands of Jump ebikes, because recycling them is ‘too complicated’

In a twist of un-environmentally friendly irony, Uber has decided to send thousands of Jump hire bikes straight to the dump because it says it’s too complicated to give them away. Yes, you should be angered by this. According to The Verge, Uber confirmed in a statement that it would be recycling many of Jump’s older ebike and scooter models after transferring many of the newer models to Jump’s new owners, Lime. Instead, that doesn’t exactly seem to be what’s happening. [Read: Here’s how many cyclists it tak[..]

SpaceX and NASA’s crewed mission postponed until the weekend due to bad weather

Last night, SpaceX aimed to ink its name in history books as it was preparing to launch NASA Astronauts in space. However, both agencies decided to postpone the launch to Saturday, May 30 due to bad weather. Astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley were scheduled to fly into space at 4.33 PM ET yesterday. However, 17 minutes before liftoff, officials informed them that the launch had to be called off. "We are not going to launch today." Due to the weather conditions, the launch is scrubbing. Our next opportun[..]