Category: Uncategorized

Happy Worldwide Developer Conference to those who celebrate. I spent the weekend watching three stories unfold at the intersection of social networks and politics. Let’s take them in turn. I. During the initial George Floyd protests earlier this month, a big question was whether the social networks would take action against President Trump for one…

Read More

There is a plethora of streaming services available for anyone with a credit card handy. Hulu and Netflix are general entertainment providers offering licensed content and originals for subscribers. Others, like anime provider Crunchyroll and NFL Sunday Ticket, are targeted at specific interests. Streaming services like Disney Plus and Apple TV Plus are flashy newcomers…

Read More

Programming note: The Interface is off on Thursday. Back on Monday. It seems hard to believe now, but there was a time when political advertising was relatively uncontroversial. Sure, individual ads regularly proved to be controversial, from the nuclear provocations of Lyndon B. Johnson’s “Daisy” to racist fear-mongering of George H.W. Bush’s “Willie Horton.” And…

Read More

Destiny 2’s first ever Fortnite-style live event just wrapped earlier today, and it was unfortunately not quite what some players were expecting. Instead of something monumental and game-changing for a key part of the game world, it was more of a slow burn alternative to a standard video game cutscene. And instead of delivering a…

Read More

Like all big tech companies, Google and Alphabet are playing an outsized role in our lives as the coronavirus pandemic continues. Whether it’s helping people find reliable information in search, working with the government on testing, building an exposure-tracking system into Android and iOS in partnership with Apple, or battling misinformation on YouTube, Google’s capability…

Read More

Taylor Walker worked hard during her time at Salem State University. She was her class’s homecoming queen, she sang in the university’s Grammy award-winning choir, and she completed a double degree in communication and speech. Graduation was her chance to reflect on all those accomplishments. To celebrate, she planned to host a party with her…

Read More

After months of hardware reveals, spec reveals, and hype, Microsoft is finally doing a proper first look at gameplay footage for its upcoming next-gen console, the Xbox Series X, showing off gameplay from 13 games that will be headed to the console this fall. Before you get too excited, the trailers showed off come from…

Read More

On Wednesday, the field director for Mel Gagarin’s congressional campaign sat shirtless — illuminated by candlelight — in his bathtub reading a scary story over Instagram Live. “Bedtime Bathtime Storytimes” have become regular events for Gagarin’s campaign even if they’re only for an audience of around a dozen people, including other members of the campaign.…

Read More

Despite pandemic-related hardware shortages, Facebook’s virtual reality business exploded at the start of 2020. The company revealed yesterday that it made $297 million in non-advertising revenue during the first quarter of 2020. That was “driven largely by sales of Oculus products,” rather than other products like Portal. The number is a full 80 percent higher…

Read More

Trying to describe Quibi’s essence to people is difficult. There are shows where food explodes in chefs’ faces, series about flipping murder homes, and Chrissy Teigen presiding over a small claims court. Quibi’s best content operates on the belief that “the more ludicrous, the better,” but that’s easier to show than tell. Or it would…

Read More

Thanks to the Morning Brew for recommending us as an “Essential” read. Here’s hoping all of you who signed up over the weekend find The Interface a useful guide to tech, democracy, and the pandemic. Facebook is a publicly traded company that mostly operates in rational and predictable ways. Facebook is also a collection of…

Read More

Last week, as coronavirus marched around the world, a growing number of governments began to explore the use of our cellphone data to monitor the outbreak. Using location data, Israel sent alerts to citizens believed to have been exposed to the virus ordering them to self-quarantine. In England, authorities analyzed anonymized data from telecom provider…

Read More

I’m writing this story under self-quarantine for novel coronavirus exposure. I’ve been sequestered for over a week while the city outside my apartment has become America’s COVID-19 epicenter: 13,000 known cases and 125 deaths so far. The governor has ordered six feet of space between all residents in public, and my days are punctuated with…

Read More

Well, it happened: you’re stuck inside because of the novel coronavirus pandemic that is raging just outside of your door. If you’re lucky, and you’re a white-collar worker, you’re now doing your job — which, let’s be honest, is mostly email anyway — from home. If you’re in an industry that’s more susceptible to the…

Read More

Konami had planned to release its mini TurboGrafx-16, PC Engine, and CoreGrafx consoles last week, but the production schedule has been hit by the coronavirus pandemic around the world. I managed to get my hands on a PC Engine Mini here in Japan, though, so here’s a quick look at it ahead of the TurboGrafx-16…

Read More

Riot’s new video game, Valorant, is both a breath of fresh air and completely unoriginal at the same time. The first-person shooter opened its closed beta on Tuesday to gargantuan Twitch viewership, thanks in part to Riot’s deal with the platform that let popular streamers gift access keys to its beta while they played the…

Read More

Since late March, President Donald Trump has been promoting the antimalarial drugs chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine as treatments for the novel coronavirus. Among other things, he’s described “strong, powerful signs” that the drugs work and called them potentially “one of the biggest game-changers in the history of medicine.” That will be fantastic if it proves true,…

Read More