Apple finally updates the Air, Gab briefly goes down and IBM places a huge bet on cloud software: The Week in Review

Mindset Digital
Mindset Digital // November 2, 2018

11.02.18

Our weekly roundup brings you a list of curated content in social, technology and Mindset Digital happenings from need-to-know to silly social trends.

Last week in social…

Gab goes down… but not out. After the suspected Pittsburgh synagogue shooter had posted threats on social network Gab, the controversial Twitter alternative was dropped by its payment processors (including PayPal), its hosting service and its domain register. Since then, the company has come back online with a new domain registrar. The new company Epik is based in Seattle, and CEO Rob Monster has said he considers his company a utility provider and supports free speech online. (via CNN)

Twitter floats a monumental platform change, but is it just fake news? Reports that Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said the “like” button would be going away in the near future got a loud and hostile reaction on Monday. But some caution is in order: for one, the story started trending based on just one (extremely) lightly sourced Telegraph article. The outcry was so great that Twitter’s communications team had to push back with some clarification: there’s no immediate timeline for the change, if at all. But it is under consideration along with numerous recent changes as part of Twitter’s broader push to “incentivize healthy conversation” and reduce harassment. (via Gizmodo)

IGTV comes to Stories. IGTV is coming to your feed, whether you want it or not. In an effort to expand content from the relatively new IGTV, Instagram will let you share a preview of IGTV videos in your regular Story. Clicking on the preview in a friend’s story will launch the full video in IGTV, which exists as its own app. Instagram hasn’t released viewer numbers yet, but if the next feature update is rolling IGTV into the main app, we can guess which way they were trending. (via the Verge)

 

Last Week in Tech…

The MacBook Air finally gets a refresh. Apple announced a slew of new hardware and product updates at their live event this week. The MacBook Air laptop got a much-needed update, and the computer will likely become the go-to option for casual users. Desktop users also got an overdue treat: the Mac mini has its first new version since 2014. Apple also unveiled a new iPad Pro and an upgraded Pencil 2, though it remains to be seen if this is the year the iPad finally becomes a viable laptop replacement. (via the Verge)

The competition to Amazon Go is coming, and we’re seeing an early trend. Not to be left out of the cashier-less shopping store of the future, Walmart is debuting its own take on Amazon Go at a new Sam’s Club location in Dallas. It’s not quite hands-free, however: customers can skip the checkout line, but they’ll need to scan their items as they shop. Hot on the heels of this announcement, 7-Eleven broke the news about their own version of scan-and-go express checkouts, also starting in Dallas. Cashiers will still be on hand to handle hot items and alcohol. While these competitor versions aren’t the “grab and go” convenience of the future promised by Amazon, they also seem a whole lot more viable to scale up in the immediate future. (via Quartz)

IBM goes back to the basics with a big acquisition. Analysts don’t need artificial intelligence to read between the lines: IBM might be quietly giving up on the futuristic sci-fi promise of Watson and returning to what they’ve always been good at: enterprise software and services. The $34 billion purchase of Red Hat is the biggest deal in software history (although Dell still holds a $67 billion tech record). Watson never fully lived up to its promise of driving either revenue or viable solutions for the company, although it was great at generating hype. This new deal could also end up being a swan song for CEO Ginni Rometty, giving IBM a major footing in hybrid cloud technology. (via TechCrunch)

 

Last Week at Mindset Digital…

Translation is not transformation:

Our creative director Pete Brown uses a brief history of banking at his ATM to weigh in on why a truly digital era has only just begun.

 

Thank you, Internet!

If you came of age during that strange, wonderful sweet spot where viral videos were a thing (hi eBaum’s World!) but YouTube was not, it’s very likely that you and some friends huddled around a clunky laptop and spent hours laughing at and quoting “Rejected,” an Oscar-nominated short film by animator Don Hertzfeldt.

If so, we have some incredible news to share:

The 4K restoration is part of a Blu-Ray anthology of the animator’s works, first available on Kickstarter and now online at his website. We promise we’re not getting paid to say this: you should buy it immediately if you’re at all interested in art that takes a poignant look at technology and our relationships with it—and with each other.

The collection also includes “It’s Such a Beautiful Day” and “World of Tomorrow,” which pick up on the comic unease of “Rejection” and run with it in deeply moving ways. (Again, we promise we’re not being paid to hype this. He really is one of the best filmmakers out there, and also the most prescient.)

One more clip to share: if you thought the Simpsons had lost its power to be subversive over a decade ago, check out the couch gag in the surreal hands of Hertzfeldt.

Seriously. Buy the Blu-Ray.

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Matt Weiner and Pete Brown contributed to this week’s roundup.

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