The Download: This startup wants to kick-start a molecular electronics revival

The must-reads

I’ve combed the internet to find you today’s most fun/important/scary/fascinating stories about technology.

1 Facebook financed a secretive smear campaign against TikTok
This reveals just how rattled Meta really is. (WP $)
Facebook seems to be incapable of learning from its many mistakes. (Platformer $)
There’s no 911 in the metaverse. (The Information $)

2 Apple and Meta were tricked by hackers masquerading as law enforcement
One of the perpetrators is believed to be the teenage Lapsus$ mastermind. (Bloomberg $)
+ Nvidia is still refusing to cave to pro-crypto hackers holding it ransom. (Slate $)

3 Blaming tech for mental health problems misses the bigger picture
Humans get depressed even when we don’t have phones in our hands. (Wired $)
+ Please, help me stop doomscrolling. (Wired $)
People are swapping drinking for microdosing. (Vox)

4 More than half of Americans may have never had covid
Researchers are increasingly keen to study the ‘never covid’ cohort for immunity clues. (Bloomberg $)
+ Covid.gov has launched. Better late than never? (NPR)

5 El Salvador is courting crypto “whales” for new bitcoin-backed bonds
After most big international investors shunned them. (FT $)

6 Russia’s answer to Instagram is… not great
It may look like Instagram, but Instagram it ain’t. (The Guardian)
+ Russian influencers aren’t convinced they’ll be able to make money on it, either. (Insider $)
+ Meanwhile, Instagram is still pushing reluctant creators to make Reels. (Vox)
+ …And they’re mostly ripped off from TikTok anyway. (Vox)

7 A researcher who laid the foundations for supercomputers has won the Turing Award
Dr Jack Dongarra’s code paved the way for complex algorithms. (NYT $)

8 Why is everyone acting so weird right now?
Spoiler: it’s not just because of the pandemic. (The Atlantic $)

9 What’s it’s like going down the strangest Wikipedia rabbit holes
Why did the chicken cross Yunnan Provincial Road 214? It’s time to find out. (NYT $)
How a Wikipedia joke about the name of the Pringles mascot became fact. (The Guardian)

10 Worms are taking over 🪱
And they’re surprisingly destructive. (Nat Geo)
There are hundreds of mammal species yet to be discovered. (The Guardian)