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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
Tech3 min read

Hi there. We've got more updates on the AWS outage, and Elon Musk officially sold his last remaining home (next step, colonize Mars).

Let's dive in.

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1. The AWS outage could lead to shipping delays ahead of the holidays. The massive Amazon Web Services outage on Tuesday toppled the apps the company uses to talk to its frontline workers, and will likely lead to delivery delays for Amazon packages.

  • "It's chaos, utter fucking chaos," one employee said. "There is going to be chaos until Christmas."
  • Beyond any shipping delays, the outage could affect some Amazon Flex delivery drivers' paychecks. The company warned drivers they may not be compensated until Dec. 14. What we know so far.
  • Amid the chaos, videos show Amazon warehouse workers dancing, singing karaoke, and playing baseball after everything ground to a halt. See how some workers passed the time.

In other news:

2. Amazon unionizers say a visit from the NYPD quickly turned sour. The unionizers at a warehouse in Staten Island said one was handcuffed and held in a cell, and both received court summonses. They shared their version of the incident.

3. Inside Better's week from hell. America's top startup fell from grace after its CEO laid off 900 people in a three-minute Zoom call. One employee's work email and messaging were cut off so fast he had to quiz ex-colleagues via Facebook. More than 10 now-former employees took us inside the firm that crashed and burned over the past week.

4. Instagram is working to bring back the chronological feed. After doing away with the chronological feed in favor of a controversial engagement-based ranking in 2016, the company has decided to return to its roots, Instagram head Adam Mosseri said. Why Instagram is scrapping the engagement-based feed.

5. Meta has lost at least 18 executives in 2021. As the company (formerly known as Facebook) goes through a major shakeup, some of its longest-standing execs have left the company. Some left quietly — and others criticized the company on their way out. Here's everyone who's left this year.

6. You can play video games in a Tesla while driving. Tesla owners can use their vehicle's screen to play video games — even while the car is in motion, The New York Times first reported. Here's what you need to know about Tesla's video games.

7. An NBA star is backing a delivery startup modeling itself after Whole Foods. Baron Davis and other investors have put their weight behind Fast AF, an ultrafast delivery service that offers high-end snacks and drinks, as well as cosmetics and exercise equipment. Get the rundown on Fast AF.

8. Another billionaire just launched into space. Japanese fashion tycoon Yusaku Maezawa was sent on a 12-day space trip yesterday and said he'll be giving away cash to people on Earth while he's in orbit. He also shared footage of his training, which he said "almost feels like torture." You can see the video here.

9. Elon Musk has sold his last remaining home for $30 million. Musk has repeatedly said he plans to sell his possessions to fund a Mars colony and got one step closer to doing so when he sold his 47-acre property on Dec. 2. More on that here.

10. A pitch for a casino in New York features a crypto-trading floor and a flying car landing pad. A Las Vegas-seasoned asset manager is looking to launch a massive crypto-friendly casino — and hopes to make it the biggest crypto-trading floor in the world. Get the details on the $3 billion proposal.

What we're watching today:

  • Earnings expected from Oracle, Costco, Lululemon, and more. Keep up with earnings here.
  • The 2021 Forbes Power Women's Summit takes place virtually today.
  • Today is Apple's deadline to comply with a court's decision on in-app payments.
  • HashiCorp shares are expected to commence trading on NASDAQ.

Curated by Jordan Parker Erb in New York. (Feedback or tips? Email or tweet @jordanparkererb.) Edited by Michael Cogley in London.