Download: technology’s gender gap and how Gen Z deals with misinformation

This is today’s edition ofDownload,Our weekday newsletter provides daily coverage of what’s happening in the tech world.

Why can’t technology fix its gender problem?

Despite the tech sector’s vast wealth and the company’s vocal commitments to the rights of women, LGBTQ+ and racial minorities, the industry remains largely a men’s world of skin. white, frank.

Much of the burden for system change has been placed on women: they are encouraged to learn programming, major in STEM, and become more self-determined. But confidence and masculinity aren’t enough to overcome structural barriers, especially for techies who are also parents. Even the pandemic’s shift to remote work has not made workplaces more hospitable to women.

It’s not always this way. Software programming was once an almost exclusively female profession. As recently as 1980, women held 70% of programming jobs in Silicon Valley, but that proportion has changed radically. While many things have contributed to the change, from the education pipeline to the persistent fantasies of technology as a gender-blind “mercy regime,” no one has fully explained it. What really lies at the heart of the tech world is money. Read full story.

—Margaret O’Mara

Google examines how different generations handle misinformation

News: Younger people than older generations are more likely to think they may have unwittingly shared false or misleading information online — often driven by pressure to share emotional content quickly fast. However, they are also more adept at using advanced authenticity verification techniques, a new study from Poynter, YouGov and Google has found.

What they found: One-third of Gen Z respondents said they practice horizontal reading (perform multiple searches and cross-reference their results) always or most of the time when verifying information — more double the boom percentage.

But but: The study relied on participants reporting on their own beliefs and habits, a method known to be unreliable. And the upbeat numbers about Gen Z’s actual habits contrast sharply with other findings about how people verify information online. Read full story.

—Abby Ohlheiser

Things to read

I scoured the internet to find you today’s most interesting/important/scary/fascinating stories about tech.

1 Amazon wants to start offering telemedicine
The e-commerce giant is rapidly expanding into healthcare. (Insiders $)
+ And they’re expanding the palm-reading payment system into dozens of Whole Foods stores. (Ars Technica)

2 US rejected Starlink’s bid to offer broadband
The FCC says it has failed to demonstrate it can deliver on its promise to deliver broadband to rural America. (TechCrunch)
+Who is Starlink really for? (MIT Technology Review)

3 Big Tech wants to build a data center on the US battlefield
But Civil War conservationists are resisting. (New Scientist $)

4 China’s economic crisis is spawning a new wave of oligarchs
But they are making their fortunes in sportswear and skincare, not technology. (Economist $)

5 genius founders of Silicon Valley are participating in the Great Resignation
Their loss-making businesses want experienced leadership in tough times for the industry. (NYT $)
+ Why Steve Jobs loved his turtleneck. (NYT $)

6 Air conditioning is bad for the planet
Better building ventilation and greener units are just a few of the alternatives. (Vox)
+ The legacy of Europe’s heatwaves will be more air conditioning. (MIT Technology Review)
+ Big Tech engineers are leaving legacy businesses to climate-focused startups. (Protocol)

7 Social Media Really Wants Shopping Live Streams To Be Successful
Direct e-commerce is already huge in China, but elsewhere consumption has been even slower. (FT $)
+ China wants to control how its famous streamers act, speak and even dress. (MIT Technology Review)

8 Rise and development of ebike
In the context of rising gas prices, electric bicycles are a cheaper alternative to cars. (WSJ $)
+ Lithium, which is essential for electric car batteries, is currently in short supply. (WSJ $)

9 Millennials Are Bonding With Their Children Through Pokémon
After 26 years, the franchise has appealed to a slew of generations. (WP $)
+ Fewer people play games today than during the pandemic. (Reuters)

10 job hunting companies are paying $1,000 for the perfect LinkedIn headshot
In an image-obsessed world, they hope it will work to their advantage. (WSJ $)

Quote of the day

“Cybercriminals ate our lunch.”

—Chris Krebs, former director of the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency, thinks the government has been blinded to the threat of everyday ransomware attacks due to its focus on tracking attackers. sophisticated overseas, report PC Mag.

Big story

This is why Demis Hassabis started DeepMind

Demis Hassabis

February 2022

In March 2016 Demis Hassabis, CEO and co-founder of DeepMind, was in Seoul, South Korea, watching his company’s AI make history. AlphaGo, a computer program trained to master the ancient game of Go, played a five-game match against Korean expert Lee Sedol and defeated him 4-1, in a battle. Winning has changed the world’s perception of what AI can do.

But while the DeepMind team was celebrating, Hassabis was thinking of an even bigger challenge. He realized that his company’s technology was poised to answer one of the most complex and important puzzles in biology, one that researchers had been trying to solve for 50 years: predicting the structure of proteins. Read full story.

—Will Douglas Heaven

We can still have good things

A place for comfort, fun and distraction during these strange times. (Any ideas? Drop me a line or tweet ’em with me.)

+ 8glitchorbit’s digital art is strangely light.
+ PreyPredator’s new prequel, it sounds like it might just help relieve a few of the series’ past horrors.
+ All praise the rise and rise of man leading emo.
+ This is interesting: investigators are using DNA to fight Foresters illegally exploit trees.
+ Turtle is returning to mainland Mississippi for the first time in four years.

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