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Seven Must-Read Stories (Week Ending August 9, 2014)

Another chance to catch the most interesting, and important, articles from the previous week on MIT Technology Review.
  1. The Amazon Fire’s Fanciest Features Fail to Impress
    The Amazon Fire Phone tries hard to impress but often ends up just being annoying.
  2. Stacking Cells Could Make Solar as Cheap as Natural Gas
    A novel manufacturing method could make it practical to stack solar cells and convert more of the energy in sunlight into electricity.
  3. This Company Thinks Your Car Wants Google Glass
    A heads-up display could be safer than glancing at your smartphone while driving—but some features may be more distracting than others.
  4. A Room Where Executives Go to Get Help from IBM’s Watson
    Researchers at IBM are testing a version of Watson designed to listen and contribute to business meetings.
  5. Challenges Remain for Technologies to Fight Ebola
    Efforts to contain Ebola in West Africa suffer from a lack of effective tools to treat and prevent the disease, although several are in development.
  6. European Space Agency Reaches Verge of Breakthrough Comet Landing
    Images sent back from space probe bring a historic comet mission into clear focus.
  7. How a Simple Spambot Became the Second Most Powerful Member of an Italian Social Network
    The surprising story of how an experiment to automate the creation of popularity and influence became successful beyond all expectation.
  8. <

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travelers walk through Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport
travelers walk through Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport

We won’t know how bad omicron is for another month

Gene sequencing gave an early alert about the latest covid variant. But we'll only know if omicron is a problem by watching it spread.

Conceptual illustration showing a file folder with the China flag and various papers flying out of it
Conceptual illustration showing a file folder with the China flag and various papers flying out of it

The US crackdown on Chinese economic espionage is a mess. We have the data to show it.

The US government’s China Initiative sought to protect national security. In the most comprehensive analysis of cases to date, MIT Technology Review reveals how far it has strayed from its goals.

conceptual illustration showing various women&#039;s faces being scanned
conceptual illustration showing various women&#039;s faces being scanned

A horrifying new AI app swaps women into porn videos with a click

Deepfake researchers have long feared the day this would arrive.

Conceptual illustration showing a file folder with the China flag and various papers flying out of it
Conceptual illustration showing a file folder with the China flag and various papers flying out of it

We built a database to understand the China Initiative. Then the government changed its records.

Our monthslong investigation revealed a major DOJ effort troubled by shifting narratives and a lack of focus. Here's how we got the facts.

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Illustration by Rose WongIllustration by Rose Wong

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