Lousy Grades


How Teachers Would Redesign Zoom 

Many believe that remote learning is an inferior substitute for in-person classes. But class via computers itself is not inherently flawed; it’s the remote platforms that are failing teachers and students. Zoom in particular has been slow to add key educational features. Fast Company asked teachers how they would redesign Zoom.


Viral Meltdowns Are All the Rage


Videos of people behaving badly have become so popular that filming one another is now a reflexive impulse, The Atlantic reports. Once uploaded, these interactions quickly get reposted by enormous meme accounts, amplified by algorithms, and monetized by sites that specialize in spreading them.


Bumble’s Upcoming Date with an IPO

Whitney Wolfe Herd, the founder and CEO of Bumble, launched the app in 2014 with the aim of creating a comfortable and empowering online dating space for women. Now, Bumble is reportedly headed toward a $6 billion initial public offering, Business Insider says.


First, Reinvent Online Shopping—and Then Kill the Password

Fast, a one-click checkout system for the entire internet is hoping with a single button to change the way people buy online. But its real goal, reports Protocol, is to be the only login you ever need again.


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What Makes TikTok Tick with Kids 


TikTok, a social media platform targeted at young mobile phone users, was the most downloaded app in the world in July. Why do kids love it? The answer is multifaceted, writes Penn State professor Kevin Munger on The Conversation.


Patreon Raises $90 Million in New Funding 

Patreon, which lets musicians, writers, actors and other artists get paid directly by fans for content subscriptions, has raised $90 million in new funding at a valuation of $1.2 billion, Axios reports. With the pandemic shuttering traditional performance venues, eliminating live events and slowing the broader economy, creative workers of all stripes are seeking alternative sources of revenue.


Digital Counties Winners Were Prepped for the Pandemic


A common theme rises to the fore among the winners in the 18th Annual Digital Counties Survey, conducted by the Center for Digital Government. The clear lesson this year is that planning pays off, and often in unexpected ways, Government Technology reports.


‘Hidden Gems’ Among Online Design Tools 

Online platforms offer simple functionality, yet often they consist of poorly customizable templates and repetitive styles. Still, writes designer Vera Vashkovska on Dribbble, "there are actually some hidden gems out there." She compiled a list of 10 online design tools you never knew you needed. 


Political Databases Know a Lot About You

If you live in the U.S., you’re almost certainly being tracked by political organizations, the MIT Technology Review reports. They know a lot about you—but some data is just guesswork. 


Paper Magic


Engineers at Purdue University have developed a simple printing process that renders any paper or cardboard packaging into a keyboard, keypad or other easy-to-use human-machine interface, Science Daily reports. The process eases the fabrication of vertical pressure sensors that do not require any external battery; instead, they harvest the energy from their contact with the user.