Weekly Roundup: Spectacles on Amazon, Pokemon in Court and What is Elon Musk Talking About?

Michael Harwick
Michael Harwick // July 21, 2017

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

Last week in social…

Making a Spectacle of yourself just got easier. Snapchat has made its wearable camera-sunglasses available on Amazon and yes, if you’re a Prime member, they do qualify for two-day shipping. Initially starting as a hot commodity available only through event-specific vending machines, the social media accessory became available in Snapchat’s online store a few months ago. Your sunnies will now arrive just in time for your vacation next week, and at no additional markup. (via Mashable)

Twitter: Now with ten times less trolling? The social media giant faced intense scrutiny over the past year as a service facilitating harassment. But a recent blog post suggests the company has taken measures to suspend vitriolic users’ accounts, showing that 65% of disciplined accounts have ceased to repeat their abuse. The company claims to be taking action against ten times as many accounts as this time last year. Its algorithm-supported offense detection, at least for now, seems to be working. (via Fortune)

Facebook is picking up Google’s pieces – literally. The company’s mysterious hardware division, Building 8, filed for a patent for what appears to be a modular phone and smart speaker. And with several veterans from Google’s defunct Project Ara supposedly working for Facebook now, it’s looking extremely likely that the upgradable gadget is back on the agenda. Less clear is whether consumers actually want it. (via The Verge)


Last week in tech…

Lyft doubles down on self-driving cars. Lyft wants to be the platform of choice for autonomous cars, but would prefer not to build them. Rather than try to outspend Uber’s ground-up operation, Lyft hopes its software can determine whether a given ride-hail situation merits a human driver or can be handled driverlessly. And a brand new innovation facility at Palo Alto should help it put autonomous cars on the road by year’s end. (via Select All)

Tor it to shreds. American and European law enforcement announced that two major dark net markets operating via the controversial browser have been shut down. After AlphaBay, the largest online black market, was shuttered earlier this month, users fled for Hansa Market only to find Dutch police waiting in a massive sting. Analysts suggest the crackdown is the first major play in a new web-based war on drugs. Maybe weapons are next? (via The New York Times)

Pokémon Go wherever you want. Augmented reality has one of its first major legal victories after a Wisconsin ordinance enacted in response to Pokémon Go was found to be unconstitutional. The federal lawsuit was brought by AR game design company Candy Lap, whose Texas Rope ’Em was affected by legislation passed after Milwaukee County parks were overrun by aspiring Pokémon trainers in February. The free speech victory for game makers comes on the eve of the app’s first anniversary event in Chicago. (via Ars Technica)


Last Week at Mindset Digital…

We released Episode 25 of the Mindset Digital podcast! Mindset Digital co-founder Dr. Debra Jasper talks with Creative Director Pete Brown on staying relevant in a digital age, and previews her upcoming keynote at DOYO Live.

Geotagging is a slick feature on Twitter, but should use it? If you’re a business, the answer is probably yes. Our Kelly Rudolph explores.


For Your Weekend…

Hyperventilating over Hyperloop. Elon Musk raised eyebrows this week after he tweeted that he received “verbal govt approval,” apparently from the White House, for his Boring Company to build a subterranean hyperloop on (below?) the DC – NYC corridor. He estimates the total journey will take under a half-hour one way. The only problem is that he has yet to consult any of the cities involved on the massive infrastructural project. We know Musk loves these tunnels (even more than floors), but it seems like he’s gone a little loopy from the hype. (via Engadget)