WIRED Business: Startups, Cryptocurrency, Tech Culture, and More

WIRED Business: Startups, Cryptocurrency, Tech Culture, and More

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Narrators read our favorite written stories. You can listen to them anywhere, including on your smart speaker. Play for audio versions of WIRED’s Business stories, including the latest on blockchain, crypto, startups, telecoms, national affairs, and tech culture.


AI Is All the Rage. So Why Aren’t More Businesses Using It?
Aug 5 • 6 min
A big study by the US Census Bureau finds that only about 9 percent of firms employ tools like machine learning or voice recognition—for now.
Facebook’s ‘Red Team’ Hacks Its Own AI Programs
Aug 4 • 9 min
Attackers increasingly try to confuse and bypass machine-learning systems. So the companies that deploy them are getting creative.
Anthony Levandowski Asks a Judge Not to Send Him to Prison
Aug 3 • 6 min
The former Google engineer, who pleaded guilty to stealing the company’s self-driving car technology, says he’d be at heightened risk for Covid-19.
California’s Air Pollution Cops Are Eyeing Uber and Lyft
Jul 31 • 6 min
A proposal would require 60 percent of ride-hail miles to be in electric vehicles by 2030. And the companies are on board.
Even the Best AI Models Are No Match for the Coronavirus
Jul 30 • 6 min
Many so-called “quantitative funds” that mine historical data to make trading decisions fared poorly in March, when stocks fell sharply amid coronavirus fears.
Neuroscience Could Be the Key to Getting People to Wear Masks
Jul 29 • 6 min
In a study, people responded to messages that resonated with them personally—up to a certain extent. The results could help shape responses to future pandemics.
Tesla Will Build ‘GigaTexas’ to Crank Out Cybertrucks
Jul 28 • 5 min
On the heels of another profitable quarter, despite a coronavirus-induced shutdown of its California plant, the electric automaker announced its fourth factory.
Covid Is Pushing Some Mass Transit Systems to the Brink
Jul 27 • 5 min
Riders are skittish. Cleaning costs are soaring. Some, like the Bay Area’s Caltrain system, face an existential crisis.
This Algorithm Doesn’t Replace Doctors—It Makes Them Better
Jul 24 • 6 min
An artificial intelligence system has outperformed physicians when detecting skin lesions. The results are changing how one school trains dermatologists.
An Ethics Guide for Tech Gets Rewritten With Workers in Mind
Jul 23 • 7 min
The Ethical Explorer Pack is designed to help Silicon Valley’s rank and file—not just CEOs—steer products away from harmful directions.
This Drone Maker Is Swooping In Amid US Pushback Against DJI
Jul 22 • 9 min
Skydio is best known for “selfie drones.” Now, it’s seeking government contracts, as American officials shun the Chinese drone company.
Prepare for Artificial Intelligence to Produce Less Wizardry
Jul 21 • 7 min
A new paper argues that the computing demands of deep learning are so great that progress on tasks like translation and self-driving is likely to slow.
Massachusetts Launches Uber and Lyft’s Latest Legal Headache
Jul 20 • 4 min
The state sued the ride-hail companies for misclassifying drivers as contractors, following a similar move by California officials.
The Intersection Between Self-Driving Cars and Electric Cars
Jul 17 • 6 min
New research suggests that the tradeoffs for electric autonomous vehicles aren’t as painful as once thought, though early AVs might be gas hybrids.
Where Are the Adults in the Clubhouse?
Jul 16 • 10 min
Plus: A tough review of IBM’s PCjr, fresh questions on Covid-19, and government help for the self-sufficient.
An Algorithm Set Students’ Grades—and Altered Their Futures
Jul 15 • 9 min
The International Baccalaureate program canceled its high-stakes exam because of Covid-19. The formula it used to “predict” scores puzzles students and teachers.
Is It Game Streaming’s Turn for a Labor Revolution?
Jul 14 • 12 min
After the demise of Mixer, livestreamers are taking a closer look at what their platform partnerships should look like.
Uber Moves Stealthily to Gain Allies in a Fight With Cities
Jul 13 • 8 min
Nonprofits and advocacy groups signed on to an organization called Communities Against Rider Surveillance—without knowing that the ride-hail giant was involved.
Covid Drives Real Businesses to Tap Deepfake Technology
Jul 10 • 10 min
Coronavirus restrictions make it harder and more expensive to shoot videos. So some companies are turning to synthetic media instead.
Self-Driving Tech Is Becoming a Game of Partnerships
Jul 9 • 4 min
Making an autonomous vehicle is proving harder and costlier than many startups predicted. So they’re teaming up with giants like Hyundai, Jaguar, and Ford.
Seattle’s Uber and Lyft Drivers Make $23.25 an Hour—or $9.73
Jul 8 • 8 min
Two studies reach very different conclusions about ride-hail earnings, as city officials consider setting a minimum wage.
In These Factories, Inspector Robot Will Check Your Work
Jul 7 • 6 min
Artificially intelligent camera systems look for defects and misplaced parts in many industries. The coronavirus pandemic makes them extra useful.
5G Was Going to Unite the World—Instead It’s Tearing Us Apart
Jul 6 • 7 min
Divisions over technical standards and the role of China’s Huawei are jeopardizing the rollout of superfast connections.
An Ohio City’s Campaign Got More People to Buy Electric Cars
Jul 3 • 4 min
In just three years, Columbus managed to exceed its goal of more than 3,200 new BEVs and plug-in hybrids .
A New Card Ties Your Credit to Your Social Media Stats
Jul 2 • 7 min
Founded by Instagram and finance alums, Karat wants to be the black card in every influencer’s wallet.
European Football Clubs Are Turning to AI for an Assist
Jul 1 • 5 min
Software company Acronis has been storing the data of the best and brightest teams. Now, it wants to use that to help them win games.
How ‘Sustainable’ Web Design Can Help Fight Climate Change
Jun 30 • 5 min
To cut the carbon, programmers are cutting the code. Call it green programming.
A Survey of New Cars Finds More Tech Means More Problems
Jun 29 • 5 min
US carmakers fare well in JD Power’s annual survey of new vehicle owners. Tesla gets poor grades on a small sample.
Baidu Breaks Off an AI Alliance Amid Strained US-China Ties
Jun 26 • 7 min
The search giant was the only Chinese member of the Partnership on Artificial Intelligence, a US-led effort to foster collaboration on ethical issues.
The Therapist Is In—and It’s a Chatbot App
Jun 25 • 8 min
Companies rush to offer digital help for psychiatric disorders, after the FDA relaxes its rules amid the Covid-19 pandemic.