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Kuo: Investors are taking a wait-and-see approach to Apple’s AR headset.

While many are champing at the bit to see Apple’s new AR headset, some investors are more interested in potential AI announcements at WWDC, according to a tweet today from supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

As Kuo explains it, the headset “may not be a substantial revenue and profit contributor for suppliers in the next two years compared to AI.”

This scientist’s posts got more proportional engagement on Mastodon than anywhere else.

Second place? Instagram. The Nature Conservancy’s chief scientist, Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, decided to track social engagement on a post about her recent Scientific American essay (via Hacker News).

The numbers are all relative — of six platforms, Mastodon won according to the percentage of engagement per follower, calculated as (likes + shares + comments)/followers. But for absolute numbers, Hayhoe’s experiment has Twitter on top.

A bar graph representing engagement on a social media post, with Mastodon at over 12 percent engagement, Instagram at less than six, and Twitter, LinkedIn, and Post under 2 percent.
It may not say anything broadly, but Hayhoe’s informal study showed Mastodon was far better in one instance.
Image: Dr. Katharine Hayhoe
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Twitter’s new ops pick is aimed squarely at advertisers.

Incoming CEO Linda Yaccarino announced that NBCUniversal executive vice president Joe Benarroch is joining Twitter (via Wall Street Journal). From the Journal:

“Tomorrow, I start a different professional adventure at Twitter, taking on a role focusing on business operations,” Benarroch wrote in the memo. He noted that he has worked with Yaccarino to champion and grow the company’s business priorities and help build partnerships, among other things. “I am looking forward to bringing my experience to Twitter, and to working with the entire team to build Twitter 2.0 together.” 

Yaccarino’s hiring has helped rid the company of its “high risk” label, and bringing in NBCUniversal’s top ad sales person is another attempt to connect with advertisers.

The Verge’s 2023 Father’s Day Gift Guide

Gifts for tinkerers, makers, and outdoorsy types that are far cooler than your basic mug or necktie.

The Verge
Don’t expect Sony’s Q handheld to stream cloud games anytime soon.

Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida hinted to the Financial Times that it’s still in the studying phase re: cloud gaming, due to the “technical difficulties” of streaming games over the internet.

Wait, doesn’t Sony already have a cloud gaming service? Kinda, but I suspect he’s talking about this new one!

Engineered Arts plugged its lifelike robot into ChatGPT.

When we wrote about Engineered Arts’ Ameca android last year, the company said it wants to integrate chatbot functionality, and since then it has done so, using one of the most prominent chatbots, ChatGPT-3 (GPT-4 was too slow). In his conversation with The Verge, Engineered Arts CEO Will Jackson said:

It’s amazing the simple things you can do to make a machine look sentient.

The most human-like trick from the video below was not so much its response, but its double-take after being told “you stink.”

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These are issues Apple may fix in later versions of the “Reality Pro.”

We may not know until after WWDC, but Apple's mixed reality headset probably won't address every AR issue right out of the gate. As pointed out by Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman in his Power On newsletter today:

I expect that future versions will fix problems in the first model — such as nausea complaints, performance hiccups, overheating concerns and a lack of cellular connectivity — and bring down the price.

That’s not surprising, and doesn’t paint the “Reality Pro” as doomed, just a first attempt likely aimed at developers and very early adopters. As Casey Newton writes for The Verge, whether Apple’s new platform succeeds depends more on its evolution than on tomorrow’s device.

Good morning, it’s time to play Setris.

This new falling block game from an indie developer called M.slivo that asks you the question: what if the blocks were made of sand (via Hacker News)?

Instead of rigidly fitting together, the blocks fall apart when they land, their pixels tumbling down the slopes. You clear “lines” by creating contiguous colored stripes that span the playfield. It breaks your brain in the most delightful way.

It’s for Windows and Linux only, unfortunately.

Apple transformed the iPhone 10 years ago — and we’re still feeling it today

iOS 7 brought a bold new design, but much of what was introduced in that release still serves as the foundation for what we see on our iPhones today.

Computex 2023: all the news from Taiwan’s big PC show

For one glorious week, PC enthusiasts gathered in Taipei.

Apollo developer Christian Selig interviewed about Reddit’s new API policy.

Selig made Apollo, one of the most popular third-party Reddit clients. He and Snazzy Labs owner Quinn Nelson dive into why Reddit’s abrupt shift to an API access pricing structure may give apps like his an untenable future, saying it could cost him $20 million per year.

It’s a good interview that covers alternative monetization schemes and draws comparisons to API policy changes for both Twitter and Imgur.

A big Pixel 8 chip leak just dropped.

Tipster Kamila Wojciechowska, who’s dropped several Google leaks this year, wrote in great detail about the Pixel 8’s Tensor G3 SoC (via 9to5Google).

She says it’s getting the ARM Immortalis GPU, a first for US phones, and that it’s tuned for AI, which makes sense, considering... the entirety of Google I/O.

Pixel leaks just keep coming lately, even from Google itself.

“Hey Siri” is about to get chopped in half.

Late last year, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman said Apple would change Siri’s invocation phrase to just “Siri” but was unsure about how long that shift might take. Now he says the change will be announced along with everything else we’ll hear about at WWDC next week.

Signups are open for Duet AI features for Google Slides.

Google tweeted that Google Workspace admins can sign up for a closed beta of Duet AI image generation in Google Slides yesterday (via 9to5Google). The feature lets users add AI-generated backgrounds with a “Help me visualize” prompt in the sidebar.

The feature was announced in March with other Google Workspace AI updates, but this marks the first time AI features have hit its presentation app.

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Reddit’s never gonna give Rick Astley up.

If you sort Reddit’s r/all page by top posts of all time, the number one spot is held by an old picture of Rick Astley riding a bicycle... posted by Astley himself.

The post got around 439,000 upvotes. As it hit the 250,000 upvote mark, Astley commented, “Wtf 🤣🙏.” Don’t worry, none of these links is a Rick roll. Technically.

How much free time do you have this weekend?

Because it sure was a packed week in the world of entertainment. We’ve got the excellent sequel to Into the Spider-Verse; a brilliant revival of Street Fighter; remakes of the classics games System Shock and Etrian Odyssey; and the season finales for Yellowjackets and Ted Lasso. Oh, and if you pre-ordered Diablo IV, you can dig in a little early.

A still photo of Jason Sudeikis and Hannah Waddingham in Ted Lasso.
Jason Sudeikis and Hannah Waddingham in Ted Lasso.
Image: Apple

VW ID Buzz debuts three-row electric Microbus for the US with more power and space

We finally have details on the electric Microbus that’s coming to North America, and nearly all of it is positive news.

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Who wants to be a guinea pig for Neuralink?

Turns out, a lot of people! Kind of seems like they’re unclear on which of Elon Musk’s claims are backed by science, though:

“Also not sure if it will be possible right off the bat, but I am also a Tesla owner, and it would be pretty rad if I could communicate with my car using just my mind.”

Apple’s VR/AR goggles might come with some important warning labels.

Apple’s recent focus on accessibility in its devices includes features like the upcoming Personal Voice and Assistive Access mode. Now, according to Mark Gurman, Apple’s considering including warnings that people with specific health conditions should not buy or use the headset that it’s expected to reveal next week.

That includes people with Meniere’s Disease, past traumatic brain injuries, post-concussion syndrome, migraines and vertigo. 

A similar notice (PDF) for Meta’s Quest notes the risk of seizures and possible interference with medical devices. In another tweet, Gurman said Apple could add additional warnings for ADHD, anxiety, pacemakers, pregnancy, and more.

You can spell “banana” by drawing a banana.

Also: cloud, plane, oval, and left. What else?

(It appears some of these swipe type pictograms were uncovered in 2019 by a “Jack Lance,” who, I’m reading, was quite the puzzler.)