From here on Earth to up in space, the next two weeks of our Social-Distancing Socials are covering it all. Thursday, May 21: Will We Ever Fly Again? This pandemic is making armchair epidemiologists out of us all. Every morning we roll out of bed to yet another science-adjacent article shared by everyone and their great-aunt. But premature reporting on scientific studies can threaten public health.
A picture of Julie Mao on Miller's damaged hand terminal. If it looks like a cell phone and people appear to be using it like a cell phone, then it must be a cell phone. Not necessarily – that transparent hand-held device that people use in the Syfy network series The Expanse isn't a cell phone. Ty Franck and Daniel Abraham write the Expanse novels, novellas and short stories using the pseudonym James S. Corey. They also produce the TV series.
Future Tense is a partnership of Slate, New America, and Arizona State University that examines emerging technologies, public policy, and society. After William Gibson coined the term cyberspace in his 1984 novel Neuromancer, it almost immediately entered our everyday vocabulary. A play on information theorist Norbert Wiener's idea of cybernetics, cyberspace became shorthand for the world inside our networked computers, that digital landscape where we met to chat, play games, and exchange intimate secrets. Today, cyber is part of our political language, too, used to describe everything from digital warfare to online intelligence gathering. What often gets forgotten about the origin story of this term is that Gibson wasn't just talking the future of computers, but of a world where tech corporations rule every aspect of our lives.
We love Money Heist, too, but it's probably time for a break from Netflix. So, join us for our upcoming web events on bats' (undeserved?) Wednesday, May 27, 4 p.m. Eastern: Are Bats Really to Blame for the COVID-19 Pandemic? Tuesday, June 2, 4 p.m. Eastern: Free Speech Project: Should We Think Twice Before Limiting Political Advocacy? Earlier this month, Singapore unveiled Spot, a social distancing-enforcing robotic dog that is now "patrolling" a park.
Text messaging has been around since the dawn of cellular technology, and sparked its own unique language. But it's time to put sending regular SMS messages out to pasture. If you have an iPhone, you're already on your way. It's a data-based messaging system reliant on 3G, 4G, and Wi-Fi, rather than SMS messaging, which uses an old, outdated but universal 2G cellular network. That's where other messaging services have filled a gap in the market.