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10 things in tech you need to know today

Jordan Parker Erb   

10 things in tech you need to know today
Tech2 min read

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1. SpaceX is launching four astronauts into Earth's orbit today. From liftoff early this morning to an ocean splashdown six months later, here's how the journey will go.

2. It's possible to turn on Tesla Autopilot with nobody behind the wheel, Consumer Reports showed. Following a crash that killed two men in Texas, the firm's engineers proved just how simple it is to fool a Tesla into driving without anybody in the driver's seat. Here's what CR engineers found.

3. Amazon's senior executives are leaving in droves. At least 45 execs have left in the past year, setting the stage for Andy Jassy's first major challenge as CEO. We spoke with seven executives about why they left, and this is what they told us.

4. NASA's Perseverance rover turned CO2 into oxygen - a good sign for future Mars exploration. The rover brought an oxygen-producing experiment called MOXIE to Mars, which converted carbon dioxide into oxygen for the first time. Here's how that technology could help astronauts breathe on Mars.

5. Members of Google's ethical AI team raised concerns about harassment years before being fired. Timnit Gebru and Margaret Mitchell, the company's former lead AI ethics experts, reportedly flagged bullying and misconduct in 2018 - and were each fired within the past year. More details on their complaints.

6. Signal's CEO came for Cellebrite in an explosive blog post. The CEO claimed he was able to hack into software from Cellebrite - a digital forensics company that helps cops hack into locked phones. Read more from the CEO's post.

7. How the founder of a startup bought by WeWork almost destroyed his company's culture. In the span of 24 hours, CASE's CEO Dave Fano almost lost everything because of one mistake. The business decision that risked it all.

8. A psychedelics company backed by Peter Thiel plans to raise $100 million in an IPO. Atai Life Sciences, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, has already raised $362 million from private investors. More on that here.

9. Google's college-alternative programs have trained 50,000 people - but Silicon Valley's hiring needs to catch up. The programs train people without four-year degrees for entry-level tech jobs, in hopes of unlocking diverse talent pools. But programs like these can't boost diversity if Silicon Valley's recruitment and hiring practices don't change. More from our exclusive report.

10. Travis Kalanick's stealth $5 billion startup CloudKitchens is Uber all over again. More than 300 employees left the ghost kitchen startup this year - in an exodus that reflects long-simmering tensions about leadership, secrecy, and pay. Inside the super secretive culture.

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Compiled by Jordan Erb. Tips/comments? Email or tweet @JordanParkerErb.

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