5 things in tech you need to know today

5 things in tech you need to know today
Jin Pak, right, a 3D data specialist, celebrates a table tennis win at Google's Boulder offices on Tuesday afternoon. After working all day at their computers, Google employees can unwind with a climbing wall, video games, table tennis, and massage.Marty Caivano/Digital First Media/Boulder Daily Camera via Getty Images

Welcome back! We're changing things up as we close out the year. This week, some of Insider's tech editors are sharing five of their top stories of 2021. We'll be back in action on Monday. Happy New Year!


Hello! I'm Tekendra Parmar, Insider's tech editor for freelancers and contributors. I work with some of the most dogged freelancers and thought-provoking columnists in the tech world to enhance the incredible reporting of our tech team here at Insider.

While I'm one of the newest members of our growing team (I've officially been here since August), I'm excited to share with you some of the most riveting tech reporting this team has done during this past year.

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1. The golden age of Silicon Valley's iconic perks is over — but that may not be a bad thing. For years, Silicon Valley's offices have been decked out with rock climbing walls, on-site laundry services, and gourmet cafeterias, perks that were used to increase worker productivity. But with many companies working remotely indefinitely, the loss of these perks is shifting tech worker's perspectives on work-life balance and job satisfaction.

2. Lambda School promised a fast and cheap path to a lucrative tech career. Leaked documents and former students cast doubt on that claim. Coding bootcamps pitch themselves as a low-cost way to break into a lucrative job in tech — but the leaked documents suggest this popular coding bootcamp was being disingenuous about its 74% job placement rate. Everything we learned from the leak.

3. Mark Zuckerberg's oceanfront Kauaʻi estate has reignited anger over two centuries of Native Hawaiians being forced off their land. Tech billionaire Mark Zuckerberg's 1,380-acre property in Hawaii is reigniting old tensions over indigenous land rights on the island. We examined how he used a series of shell companies and lawsuits to amass his private paradise. Check it out here.

4. The biggest coding bootcamps may exaggerate their success rates — here's how to choose one that will actually get you a job. While many big bootcamps might be exaggerating their student's success records, a coding bootcamp may still be a worthwhile educational opportunity if you can find the right one. We spoke with industry and educational experts about how to choose one that will actually get you a job.

5. Documents reveal how the Peter Thiel-backed startup Anduril is building a virtual border wall for the Biden administration. The Biden administration is relying on AI, machine-learning, and an army of data labelers under NDAs to surveil the United States border with Mexico. What we know about Anduril's role in a virtual border wall.


Written by Tekendra Parmar. Follow @TekendraParmar on Twitter or email him at tparmar@insider.com. Edited by Jordan Parker Erb.