The Big Reveal


What Tech Titans Pay Their Employees

An SEC rule requiring publicly traded companies to report the median pay of their employees and compare it to the CEO’s pay offers a glimpse into the compensation of some of the nation’s highest-paid workers: tech employees. The median pay at Google parent Alphabet rose 25 percent last year, to $246,804, the biggest increase and highest pay among a dozen tech firms tracked by Wired. By contrast, Facebook reported that the compensation of its median employee declined almost 5 percent last year, to $228,651—the biggest decline among the companies in Wired’s analysis.


The New Tech Cold War

As the U.S. and China march toward a tech Cold War, both sides are ignoring the reality of just how much they need each other, Axios reports. The two nations might want to be independent, but neither one's vast tech economy can function without the other—and a continued trade impasse will likely mean lots of pain on both sides of the Pacific.


Leonardo’s Genius Joined Art with Engineering


Leonardo da Vinci, who died 500 years ago this month, had a remarkable capacity for careful observation that made him an astonishing artist and a brilliant scientist, writes Ben Shneiderman, a professor of computer science at the University of Maryland, on The Conversation. "Leonardo’s natural state of mind was to integrate art, design, engineering and science," he observes.


Translating Speech in the Speaker's Voice


Speaking another language may be getting easier, Engadget reports. Google recently began showing off Translatotron, a groundbreaking translation model that can directly convert speech from one language into another while maintaining a speaker's voice and cadence. The tool skips the usual step of translating speech to text and back to speech.


25 Credible Content Strategy Statistics


Many marketers like data and want clear numbers to justify their decisions, yet they fall short when it comes to sifting through reports for quality data. So, Contently has drawn up "a list of data you can trust," mostly from research reports it has produced in the last few years.


The Rise of Progressive Web Apps

Progressive web apps or PWAs are gaining momentum. Rather than a breakthrough technology, PWAs are a set of best practices to make a web-based app feel like it’s a desktop software or a native mobile app, UX Planet notes. They truly are cross-platform, easier to develop since they run on the same stack as a regular website. And they are third-party store independent. But don't expect the disappearance of native mobile apps any time soon.


It Might Be Time to Get Off Your Phone


Are we getting more narcissistic, more compulsive, and lonelier? A new book titled “Bored Lonely Angry Stupid” tries to answer this question by examining diaries, letters, and memoirs of a broad cross-section of Americans from the 19th and 20th centuries. And what they found, Vox reports, was striking: We don’t merely develop new devices for expressing our emotions—our devices actually alter what emotions we express.


Two-Time Ransomware Victims?

As ransomware attacks crippled businesses and law enforcement agencies, two U.S. data recovery firms claimed to offer an ethical way out. Instead, they typically paid the ransom and charged victims extra, ProPublica reports.


Is More User Research Always Better?

A design research study can involve as few as three users—or 100 or more. To determine the number of users needed for a valid survey, you need to assess four key factors, Shrut Kirti of UX Collective writes.


All Thumbs


Trending on social media right now is a video on Twitter of two teenage boys struggling to make a phone call on a rotary phone. This is just the latest of several young-people-struggling-with-rotary-phones videos to travel widely online over the last couple years, Slate reports. Why do these videos resonate? Perhaps because as a generational litmus test, the rotary phone is hard to beat.