The Download: A baby formula crisis, and the hunt to improve solar panels

Unfortunately, it was far from straightforward, reflecting just how volatile the NFT market is these days, and reinforcing his belief that money is weird now. Read the full story.

The must-reads

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

1 The risk of starvation is growing sharply in poorer countries
Much of the world is on the brink of an economic crisis, thanks to a combination of the pandemic’s aftermath plus the war in Ukraine, and rising inflation. (NYT $)
2 Elon Musk is hell bent on paying less for Twitter
And he’s happy to use spam bots as a convenient excuse. (Bloomberg $)
3 Data from period tracking apps is on sale
And could be used to identify specific users considering abortions. (Motherboard)
+ Abortion has been legal for the majority of America’s existence. (Wired $)
+ Overturning Roe v Wade will make navigating the unexpected extremely dangerous for women. (Slate $)
4 Apple’s mixed-reality headset program is in turmoil 
Technical challenges and leadership clashes mean it’s unlikely to see the light of day before next year. (The Information $)
5 The internet’s hatred of Amber Heard is rooted in misogyny
Many Johnny Depp supporters are more invested in attacking her than defending him. (The Atlantic $)
+ Cruel TikToks and memes mocking her testimony are hard to avoid on social media. (Wired $)
6 Crypto’s celebrity champions have gone very quiet
Because pushing digital currencies in the middle of a market meltdown is bad business. (NYT $)
+ If you’ve bought crypto in the past year, you’ve probably lost money. (New Yorker $)
+ Comedian Seth Green’s NFTs were stolen in a common phishing scam. (Motherboard)

7 Chinese sellers are abandoning Amazon
Reaching wider audiences has come with a hefty price tag, and they’ve had enough. (Rest of World)

8 The deepfake industry still has a major pornography problem
Despite its efforts to distance itself from vile, non-consensual videos, they’re still easily accessible. (Motherboard)
+ Deepfake porn is ruining women’s lives. (TR)
9 China has leapfrogged the US in the race to supercomputer supremacy
But experts want more collaboration, rather than competition, between the two. (FT $)

10 VHS tapes are reaching new generations of viewers online 📼
Amateur archivists are digitizing and streaming decades-old programs. (Input)

Quote of the day

“The message is clear: if you see something you need to report it.”

—Scott Bray, a US intelligence official, tells a Congress briefing on UFOs that pilots need to feel free to report strange sightings without stigma, according to Quartz.

We can still have nice things

A place for comfort, fun and distraction in these weird times. (Got any ideas? Drop me a line or tweet ’em at me.)

+ Watching videos of dominoes falling (or in this case, CGI lipsticks) never gets old.
+ The award for the worst pun of recent memory goes to Metallica for calling their new whiskey Rye The Lightning.
+ Now that we know what the black hole at the center of our galaxy looks like, let’s show the Milky Way itself some love.
+ Long suspected, now confirmed—cats know each others’ names, and probably yours, too.
+ How Donna Summer’s disco anthem I Feel Love gave birth to new wave.
+ I fell down a Wikipedia wormhole learning about how a knight visiting every square on a chessboard is called a knight’s tour.
+ The most complete Deinonychus skeleton ever found, which served as inspiration for Jurassic Park’s velociraptors, has sold at auction for a whopping $12 million.