The Download: Twitter’s edit button, and cleaning up fossil fuels

This is today’s version of DownloadAnd the Our daily newsletter that provides a daily dose of what’s happening in the world of technology.

The edit button won’t fix Twitter problems

Inside information: After years of requests, Twitter is finally introducing an edit button, giving its users the ability to change their tweets for up to 30 minutes after they’ve been sent. But this feature isn’t likely to solve any of the company’s biggest problems — and in some cases, it might even make them worse.

What does that mean: Twitter has resisted adding the ability to edit tweets for years, even though this was the feature most requested by its users, including potential owner Elon Musk. Now, paying subscribers to the platform will be the first users able to edit their tweets “multiple times” 30 minutes after they’ve been sent, while Twitter explores ways the feature can be abused.

The problem is: Experts have repeatedly pointed out that the ability to edit tweets can allow bad actors to rewrite history and spread misinformation, even if the full history of tweet edits is available. Read the full story.

– Rhiannon Williams

The US agency responsible for developing fossil fuels has a new job: cleaning them up

In his first month in office, US President Joe Biden signed an executive order calling for the nation to eliminate carbon pollution from the electricity sector by 2035 and achieve net zero emissions across the economy by 2050.

The move redefined the mandate of the US Department of Energy’s Office of Fossil Energy, the research agency whose mission has been to develop more efficient ways to produce fossil fuels for nearly half a century. She is now responsible for helping to clean up the industry.

While the agency continues to research oil, gas and coal production, its central mission is to reduce the impacts from producing those fossil fuels. It also has to decide where the billions of dollars earmarked by a series of recent federal laws will be put to work, while also addressing concerns about carbon sequestration and the ongoing damage from fossil fuels. Read the full story.

– James Temple

must read

I’ve combed the internet to find the most interesting/important/scary/cool stories about technology today.

1 Jackson Enters Fifth Day Without Water
Residents of the Mississippi capital are bearing the brunt of decades of government neglect. (Watchman)
+ The city had to live without money for infrastructure or repairs for years. (Fox)
+ It is still not clear when the running water will be restored. (The New York Times $)

2 The impact of the overturning of Roe v. Wade has a global impact
The decision encouraged pro-life activists in other countries as well. (well-known magazine)

3 California told electric vehicle owners to delay charging
It’s very bad timing, and it comes just days after its recent announcement to phase out gas-fueled cars. (The New York Times $)
+ The current heat wave is pushing the power grid to its limits. (Los Angeles Times)
+ A solar company wants to build small networks of solar panels in California neighborhoods. (The New York Times $)
+ The United States has only 6000 fast charging stations for electric cars. (MIT Technology Review)

AI Meta 4 can ‘read’ your brainwaves
Not very accurately, though. (new world $)

5 This is what an exoplanet looks like
The world, about 400 light-years away, was captured by the James Webb Space Telescope. (Quanta)
+ NASA’s Artemis 1 moon mission will attempt to take off again tomorrow. (space)

6 How the police track the phones of American citizens
Without a warrant, either. (Motherboard)
+ Cops built a mysterious surveillance machine in Minnesota after the murder of George Floyd. (MIT Technology Review)

7 Moth’s sensitive ears are like the ultimate microphone
Scientists want to better understand how they work. (IEEE Spectrum)

8 What does vacationing in metaverse look like?
The weird and supernatural wilderness is even more disturbing with no one to interact with. (slate $)
+ VRChat users train visitors on how to operate the virtual Kmart software. (wired $)
+ metaverse is a new word for an old idea. (MIT Technology Review)

9. Video games are not treated as dangerous cultural artifacts
But archivists hope to give them the recognition they deserve. (New Yorker $)

10 musicians who make serious money from their songs about poo 💩
They can thank the kids by yelling “poop” at Alexa. (BuzzFeed News)

Quote from today

“There are no white people there.”

—Gino Womack, director of the nonprofit Operation Good Jackson, explains salon How the city’s basic infrastructure, including water systems, was allowed to collapse.

The big story

Keynes was wrong. Generation Z will be worse.

December 2019

The founder of macroeconomics predicted that capitalism would last for about 450 years. This is the length of time between 1580 and 2030, the year John Maynard Keynes posited that humanity would solve the problem of our needs and move on to greater fears.

True, the system today appears to be on the verge of transformation, but not in the way Keynes had hoped. Generation Z was meant to be destined to unwind in a life of entertainment and creativity. Instead, it is preparing for a wage stagnation and environmental crisis.

What the hell happened? To figure out why Generation Z hasn’t turned into Generation EZ, we have to ask some basic questions about the economy, technology, and progress. Having assumed for a century that a better world would emerge above our accumulated things, the assumptions seem unfounded. Things are getting worse. Read the full story.

—Malcolm Harris

We can still have pretty things

A place to rest, have fun and distraction in these strange times. (Do you have any ideas?Message me on lineorTweet me.)

+ Turn off those audiobooks – your dog Classical music is preferred.
+ this vegetarian food It looks very delicious.
+ Reminder that Teenagers love phones Long before the advent of the smartphone.
+ I’m still not quite sure I understand why a group of researchers decided to eat food on a 55,000-year-old person the Bull.
+ I love how cute this night looks Pokemon Scochmelo.

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