Natasha Nel

editor @hackernoon

On Wild IPOs; Tech Addiction; & Airbnb's Policies Post-Shooting — #StuffIReadThisMorning

Airbnb bans 'party houses' following mass shooting

People renting houses on Airbnb and throwing massive parties is not a new phenomenon — nor are associated shootings. In 2017, a party at an Airbnb in the Bernal Heights neighborhood of San Francisco ended in gunfire. In June of 2019, a house party at an Airbnb in Elk Grove, near Sacramento, also ended in a shooting

Google’s big plan to fight tech addiction: A piece of paper

Paper Phone is not a joke—it’s part of the company’s “digital well-being experiments.” Digital detox experts aren’t having it.
Paper Phone is not a joke. It is real. “It hopes to give people an alternative solution to carrying a phone all day by offering information on a printed piece of paper,” says Emma Turpin, team lead at Google Creative Lab. “We think it might be a useful experiment for people to try.”
But Julie Albright, whose book Left to Their Own Devices: How Digital Natives Are Reshaping the American Dream tackles the complicated dynamics between young people and technology, says Google is confusing digital well-being with ditching your phone. Albright says a phone and digital well-being can coexist.
“Digital well-being is striking the proper balance between our time spent on devices and our ‘outside’ physical, social, emotional, and spiritual needs,” she says. “The problem with people using their phones too much is that time spent on social media, gaming, texting—[that’s] supplanting other healthy activities, like exercising, spending time in nature, or socializing in an unmediated fashion with friends and family.”

Saudi Aramco: The message from the world’s biggest and wildest IPO

The oil industry may decline, but it won’t go quietly
Consider the imminent stockmarket flotation of Saudi Aramco, which produces 10m barrels of oil a day, or 11% of the global total. As well as Arabian super-light, Aramco pumps out superlatives and controversy (see Briefing). Worth well over $1trn, it could, once listed, be the world’s most valuable public firm, squeezing past Apple. The initial public offering has been delayed several times; a big Aramco processing plant was hit by a missile strike in September and the firm is ultimately controlled by Muhammad bin Salman, an autocratic royal with blood on his hands. But take a moment to look beyond this. Aramco’s underlying strategy is to be the last oilman standing if the industry shrinks, pointing to the upheavals to come.

Inside the Icelandic Facility Where Bitcoin Is Mined

Cryptocurrency mining now uses more of the Nordic island nation's electricity than its homes. 
The facility, called Enigma and established by Genesis Mining in 2014, is easily the loudest environment that British photographer Lisa Barnard has ever documented. She visited two years ago while shooting her project Bitcoin. "The biggest thing I remember was just the noise and the flashing lights and wiring," Barnard says. "It was like being inside a computer."

The Story of Us [Series] by Tim Urban of Wait But Why


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