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1. Zuckerberg misunderstands the huge threat of TikTok
In leaked audio of a Facebook all-hands meeting, Mark Zuckerberg described TikTok as “almost like the Explore Tab that we have on Instagram.” But Josh Constine argues that this is a serious misunderstanding of the app, which is more like a new form of social entertainment.
These distinctions matter because TikTok is a rapidly growing force in social media, a.k.a. a significant threat to Facebook and Instagram. And how can Zuckerberg beat what he doesn’t understand?
2. Microsoft’s latest Surface Laptop arrives in 13- and 15-inch models
Microsoft’s press event is currently underway as I write this newsletter, but it has already announced a new piece of hardware — the latest version of the Surface Laptop, with pricing starting at $999 for the 13-inch model.
3. Court says FCC’s ‘unhinged’ net neutrality repeal can’t stop state laws
The FCC’s repeal of net neutrality rules has been significantly weakened by a federal appeals court, which ruled that the Commission could not preempt state laws like those pending in California. In fact, one judge called the FCC’s logic “unhinged from the realities of modern broadband service.”
4. These are the top Y Combinator companies of all time, based on valuation
In October of 2018, Y Combinator published a mega list of the top 101 companies to have gone through the accelerator, as sorted by each company’s valuation. This morning they updated the list, with Airbnb and Stripe have swapping the top spots.
5. NASA launches a new planet-hunting telescope using a giant balloon
A new telescope will seek out planets that resemble Earth from a height of around 125,000 feet, using special optical technology that will filter out light from the stars they orbit to provide a better view.
6. Where top VCs are investing in edtech
New software, content and financing solutions for learning outside the traditional school system offer the more compelling business opportunities, particularly when it comes to vocational training. (Extra Crunch membership required.)
7. Streamlit launches open-source machine learning application development framework
Streamlit co-founder Adrien Treuille says that rather than building a one-size-fits-all machine learning tool, the key was developing a solution that was flexible enough to serve multiple requirements, depending on the nature of the data involved.