December 4, 2023

The Year in Tech News

This was a fast paced calendar year for the tech entire world. Meta, the dad…

This was a fast paced calendar year for the tech entire world.

Meta, the dad or mum organization of Fb, laid off more than 11,000 personnel, the most sizeable occupation cuts in the company’s history. Elon Musk acquired Twitter for $44 billion, and has started suspending the accounts of journalists and others.

Social media’s disinformation challenges only obtained worse. Nationwide safety problems continued to mount in excess of TikTok, the Chinese-owned viral online video application. And the full cryptocurrency industry plunged into crisis.

I spoke with The New York Times’s technological know-how editor, Pui-Wing Tam, about her takeaways from these main tech tales in 2022, and what she and her crew will be spending focus to in the coming year. Here’s our conversation, frivolously edited:

Let us start off with crypto. Late last yr, the Staples Centre was renamed the Arena, seemingly a reflection of how considerably cryptocurrencies have been dominating the business zeitgeist. But points experience really distinct a yr later on.

The cost of all of these cash had been heading by the roof in 2021. NFTs had come to be super well known. Every person was conversing about crypto like it was the up coming massive thing that was likely to acquire around the world.

Then in May this yr, a well-known cryptocurrency known as Luna essentially shed all of its worth, which had a bit of a domino effect on the rest of the sector mainly because it uncovered how fragile these so-termed currencies seriously are. That led to some crypto providers filing for bankruptcy. And most not too long ago, FTX, a single of the greatest crypto exchanges in the earth, submitted for bankruptcy past thirty day period. FTX owes about $8 billion to its consumers. So all of that has quite a lot been a wake-up contact as to how actual this market is.

Do you see crypto coming back again from this?

The sector is enormously risky. It rises like nuts, then it absolutely crashes. There’s a little bit of a sample of this. But it’s not heading absent. It’s considerably additional mainstream than it used to be, even nevertheless there are a whole lot of people who would under no circumstances purchase this stuff.

Amazon, Meta, DoorDash, Lyft and quite a few other organizations announced layoffs this calendar year. What’s driving that?

Tech experienced been a person of the most resilient pieces of the economic climate — pandemic using the services of had been by means of the roof. Then this 12 months, as points slowed down, a good deal of these tech organizations said they had overexpanded during the pandemic and wanted to appropriate that. That is kind of improved the tenor of what is heading on in Silicon Valley.

The caveat is that tech is still much larger and far more robust than it was a 10 years ago. So even however there is a slowdown, it’s much from the conclude of the world for the tech market. It’s just a shift in development and in expectations, and it’s a bit a lot more of a sober time, but tech is still humongous. It’s still exceptionally wealthy.

Is there much more to the economic slowdown outside of layoffs?

Choosing is the most obvious, but at Amazon, for case in point, they’ve decided to place the brakes on some of the enlargement of warehouses. So these organizations are looking at prices writ big — it’s not just people, it’s expansion ideas, experimental initiatives, residence, and so on.

The epitome of that, definitely, is what Elon Musk has finished at Twitter, where by he’s cut hundreds of staff members, much more than 50 p.c of the company’s employees. He’s just chopping fees still left, correct and heart. I do not want to position it accurately in the middle of this tech slowdown tale, since it definitely has its individual dynamics. But if you search at what he’s carried out, it is not that much off from other organizations — they’re not building as critical a amount of cuts, but they’re earning cuts.

Talking of Musk, is he heading to keep on to dominate tech information in 2023?

Musk was absolutely one particular of our huge themes about the previous yr, and naturally a good deal of that experienced to do with Twitter, but it also became substantially broader than that. It was about Starlink, Tesla, SpaceX — he was kind of almost everywhere. He’s upending the way that administration of tech firms is becoming finished. Of course we’re likely to be looking at that — and how he influences free of charge speech — likely forward.

For more:

The New York Instances Journal published a specific challenge about youngster gun fatalities.

Today’s suggestion arrives from Victoria Edwards, who life in Sierra Madre. Victoria recommends a check out to the Mount Wilson Observatory in Los Angeles:

“To achieve the observatory, just take a physically demanding but beautiful hike from quaint and pleasant Sierra Madre. Or if you are less inclined for that kind of exertion, acquire a push on the beautiful Angeles Crest Highway. Be certain and make reservations for a tour. This is my most loved location in all of Southern California.”

Convey to us about your most loved spots to take a look at in California. Electronic mail your tips to [email protected]. We’ll be sharing a lot more in future editions of the e-newsletter.

Have you frequented any of the vacation places that we’ve proposed in the newsletter? Ship us a several strains about your excursion, and a image!

We’d like to share them in upcoming editions of the newsletter. Electronic mail us at [email protected]. Be sure to include your name and the town in which you reside.

When Heather Ringo was a little little one expanding up in the Bay Space, she was connected to Nancy Frumkes by way of Significant Brothers Big Sisters. Ringo’s mom struggled with habit and her father was ill, so the woman was shelling out a large amount of time indoors alone.

She and Frumkes started mountaineering together in Marin, and sometimes the older lady would make cookies for them to share. “I recall sensation the sunshine shining as a result of the madrone or manzanita trees, the air smelling good, like refreshing outside air,” Ringo, now in her 30s, told The Mercury News. “This person addressed me like I experienced potential” and “like I was worthy of love and kindness.”

But right after Ringo’s father died in 2001, she didn’t see Frumkes yet again. Right up until this calendar year.

In August, Ringo, who is finishing a doctorate in English at U.C. Davis, identified an previous picture of her and Frumkes together, but could not recall Frumkes’s title to try to get in touch with her. So she turned to Twitter, posting the picture and asking for enable finding the woman in the photograph. She had “saved my life when I was an at-hazard youth enduring intense trauma and abuse,” Ringo tweeted. “I want to notify her thank you.”

Within 24 hours, just one of Frumkes’s pals experienced spotted it and contacted Frumkes, who performs as an executive assistant in Marin. When she saw the image, memories of these times “started flooding back again,” Frumkes mentioned.

The two women of all ages related and spoke on the cellphone. The summary? “Let’s go for a hike.”

Thanks for studying. I’ll be back on Monday. — Soumya

P.S. Here’s today’s Mini Crossword.

Briana Scalia and Isabella Grullón Paz contributed to California Today. You can get to the workforce at [email protected].

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