Apple’s new government spyware-thwarting security feature

Exactly two weeks after Russia invaded Ukraine in February, Alexander Karp, the CEO of data analytics company Palantir, made his presentation to European leaders. With the war on the doorstep, Europeans should modernize their arsenals with the help of Silicon Valley, he argued in an open letter.

The military is responding to the call. NATO announced on June 30 that it is creating a $ 1 billion innovation fund that will invest in start-up startups and venture capital funds that develop “priority” technologies, while the UK has launched a new AI strategy specifically for defense, and the Germans have earmarked just under half a million for research and AI.

The Ukrainian war has added urgency to the momentum to push more AI tools onto the battlefield. The ones that have the most to gain are startups like Palantir, which hope to take advantage as the military rushes to update their arsenals with the latest technologies. But long-standing ethical concerns about the use of artificial intelligence in warfare have become more urgent as technology becomes more advanced, while the prospect of restrictions and regulations governing its use it seems as remote as ever. Read the whole story.

—Melissa Heikkilä

Computers will be transformed with alternative materials and approaches, perhaps sooner than you think

In less than a century, computing has transformed our society and helped stimulate countless innovations. But while we basically owe these capabilities to our ability to build progressively better computing devices, the transistor at the heart of computer chips is reaching its limits.

Those on this year’s list of innovators at MIT’s under-35 technology review are reviewing computer performance and energy efficiency with new ideas. Read more about his exciting contributions to the next wave of computer science in this essay by Prineha Narang, Professor of the Howard Reiss Chair in Physical Sciences at the University of California, Los Angeles.

This essay is part of the MIT Technology Review’s 2022 Innovators Under 35 package that recognizes the most promising young people working in technology today. See the full list here.

Mandatory readings

I combed the internet to find you the funniest / most important / scary and fascinating stories about technology.

1 The United States and the United Kingdom are very concerned about China’s industrial espionage
Beijing is determined to steal Western technology, warns spy heads of countries (FT $)
+ The US is weighing on expanding restrictions on exports to China. (NOW $)
+ It is also pushing a Dutch chip maker to stop selling its equipment in China. (Bloomberg $)

2 Apple’s new security feature defends against government spyware
Lock mode activation is designed to prevent Pegasus-style spyware from transmitting data to other devices. (WP $)
+ The vast majority of iPhone users are unlikely to ever benefit from it. (Ars Technique)

3 Why molecules could become the next microchip
Bioscience is very promising, but it progresses frustratingly and slowly. (FT $)
+ Biologists would love to program cells as if they were computer chips. (TR)

4 It’s a bad time to be a startup
Funding has fallen to its lowest level in three years and more layoffs are approaching. (NYT $)
+ Nor does it look very rosy for the industry at large. (Bloomberg $)

5 A growing number of women want to tie their horns
But they still have to convince their doctor first. (cable $)
+ Google should remove abortion search queries. (Bloomberg $)

6 Misinformation is the Washington elephant in the room
The problem is that no one can agree on how to deal with it. (NYT $)

7 The UK wants to make deepfake porn illegal
The country’s Legal Commission says current laws have not moved over time. (FT $)
+ Deepfake porn is ruining women’s lives. Now the law can finally ban it.
(MIT Technology Review)

8 Sorry, we are not living in a simulation
Despite the best efforts of some theorists to convince us that we are. (Great thought)
+ This super realistic virtual world is a driving school for AI. (MIT Technology Review)

9 Walking to gain crypto is as useless as it sounds
Still, people have fallen in love. (NY May $)
+ Some American cities still have their hopes in crypto. (Blackboard)

10 Viral uploads are becoming a problem ⛰️
Instagram geotags are causing overcrowding and disruptions. (The Guardian)

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