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Bizarro Devs is a weekly newsletter bringing you the best and the weirdest in tech.
🌬️ BREATHING NEW LIFE INTO CRYPTO. PLUS, DESIGNING FOR BETTER DATA TRANSMISSION AND NEW MEDIA QUERIES
Another week stuck indoors with a broken ankle means I had time to dive into different areas:
🌍 What's happening in Africa's startup scene. 🚫 How quarantined kids in Wuhan banded together against their homework app. ✍️ Writing usefully for users. 🙊 Why corporate language is so, so bad.
📰 From the Newsroom
The stat: $9.8 billion has been stolen since 2017 because of security issues or poorly written code. According to a KPMG report
What's the biggest problem? Securing the tokens. If you hold the private key, then you own the cryptocurrency. If you lose that key, then you lose the asset also. This was the case for a drug dealer who hid bitcoin codes worth £46m in a fishing rod case before he went to prison. His landlord threw the fishing rod case and £46m in the trash.
The crypto-rush is over 98% of mining rigs won't make a successful calculation, no one is making money mining bitcoin anymore. In the future, the only way to make money through crypto will be through the provision of token security and management.
It's not all cars and burgers: The robotic workforce has already arrived and they are all in middle management. Most of the automation involves tracking and monitoring to keep workers productive.
They're coming for the watercooler Most of the tracking is designed to catch the moments of downtime that get missed by human managers. Unfortunately, these little breaks are the ones that help your performance and keep you safe. Job burnout at one Amazon warehouse, leaders in automated management, is so bad that some will finish their shift and then have a nap in their car before heading home.
The algorithm is too secretive scheduling software has been shown to create chaos for some in the service industry because it is often implemented without agreement on schedules. Shifts are created, or dropped, based on a range of different business considerations which has an impact on quality of life.
Records are falling like dominoes with funding growing by 47%, the number of startups growing by 50% to 311, and investors increasing by 61% to 261.
Who are the big winners? Fintech startups remain the most appealing with $107 million raised. However, it's not all about Akon and bitcoin. Fintech might raise the most money by growth in other sectors means their share of funding dropped to 21%.
It was a big year for logistics, transport, e-commerce, agri-tech, and e-health startups. It was also good for Kenya and Nigeria who raked in cash with $149 million and $122 million as investors started looking beyond South Africa.
The big question: when will investment top $1 billion?
🕸️ The Cool Side of the Web
Ten must see links of the week 🔗
As part of the celebrations for International Women's Day, TIME magazine created 89 new covers to celebrate a woman of the year for every year since 1920.
Wash your lyrics is a side project that creates handwashing infographics using your favorite song lyrics. It deserves a special shoutout for not having ads or any other monetizing options.
A free tool for photo encryption and storage, Encrypt My Photos uses Blockstack technology to keep your images safe.
A great article on web design for people living in data poverty.
Quarantined kids in Wuhan gave their homework app bad ratings to get it kicked out of the app store. The app eventually went on social media to plead with them to stop. I'm pretty sure it was an adult masquerading as the app, but cute nonetheless.
A web app that uses your camera and machine learning to help you stop touching your face.
A great guide to writing usefully for anyone who creates documentation for users.
Some new media queries are coming and these are the most exciting. Some are already available.
If you have worked in a corporation than you know all about the specific language they use. Tech startups are worse, but why do they do it?.
That's it for the week.
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Have a great week,