10.5.2017

*|MC:SUBJECT|*
10.05.2017
NEED TO KNOW.
Special Forces.
Three Army Green Berets were killed, and two others wounded, in an ambush on routine patrol in the country of Niger. Five Nigerien soldiers were also killed. The attack happened about 120 miles north of the capital of Niamey (map it), in the southwest corner of the country near its border with Mali. The US has increasingly backed national forces across Sub-Saharan Africa in response to growing ISIS and Al Qaeda-linked threats - in 2006, only 1% of special forces were deployed to US Africa Command, while that number grew to over 17% by 2016. In West Africa, the consolidation of four Al Qaeda splinter groups this past March stoked worries of increasing instability in the region. There are currently about 1700 members of the US special forces in Africa, undertaking 96 missions across 21 countries. Check out a good read brushing up on the challenges of the Africa mission here

Bump Stocks.

As investigators desperately search for a motive, the shooting in Las Vegas that killed 59 and injured over 500 has pushed some lawmakers towards bipartisan - albeit limited - gun control. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) singled out a particular accessory known as a "bump stock", which converts a semiautomatic weapon into an automatic. Fully automatic weapons have been banned since 1986 (except older guns grandfathered in), but bump stocks are legal because, technically speaking, the trigger must still be pulled upon each fire (explanation here). Lawmakers have been pushed by the sheer magnitude of the shooter's - Stephen Paddock, 64, a Las Vegas resident - arsenal, which included 23 weapons - including AR-15s outfitted with the accessory. Meanwhile, the FBI questioned shooter Stephen Paddock's girlfriend, Marilou Danley, after she returned from the Philippines

Google.
Held its annual Google Hardware Event, announcing a slew of new products that beef up its personal devices and home electronics line, on top of the release of its Pixel 2 phones. Notably, the company is floating a number of devices that interface with its powerful artificial systems, including new earbuds that can translate on the fly in 40 languages, a $49 version of the Google Home Mini, and something called Google Clips - a camera meant for lifelogging, though the company says it's not meant to be wearable. While the lineup of new gadgets was cool, the takeaway is the increasing convergence of cloud-based, artificial intelligence systems that drive 24/7 connectivity through personal devices. See a full list of new tech announced here
 
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IN THE KNOW.

Sports, Entertainment & Culture.

> Minnesota Lynx defeat Los Angeles Sparks to win 4th WNBA Championship (More)
> Glee actor Mark Salling pleads guilty to child porn charges, will serve 4-7 years in prison (More)
> Arizona Diamondbacks win NL Wild Card Game; MLB Division Series begins today (More)
 

Science & Technology.

> Drug cocktail halts Zika in monkeys, could be preventative step for pregnant mothers (More)
> Genetic research shows ancient humans migrated out of Africa due to drying climate 60,000 years ago (More)
> Scientists develop biocompatible 'superglue' to replace suturing during surgery (More)
 

Business & Markets.

> Puerto Rico bonds trading at ~30 cents on the dollar; faces 10/31 shutdown if Congress doesn't provide emergency funds (More)
> Uber expands Board of Directors from 11 to 17, limiting power of former CEO Travis Kalanick (More)
> Report: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) susceptible to hacking, must strengthen security (More) | CFPB 101 (More)
 

Politics & World Affairs.

> Iraqi officials say town of Hawija retaken, one of few remaining ISIS strongholds (More)
> Pro-life congressman Tim Murphy (R, PA-18) reportedly pressured mistress to get abortion (More)
> Final day for young immigrants to renew under DACA program, up to 40,000 applications expected on last day (More)
IN DEPTH.

Applebee's Deserves to Die. 

Eater | Bijan Stephen. Ugh, millennials right? They have ruined countless things that past generations have held near and dear to their hearts - and now they are killing casual dining. It's not just snobbier tastes - economic anxiety and fickle spending habits are the key reasons why gigantic industries are fizzling out. On top of that, millennials have been raised in a time where people are losing interest in the things that made up the mosaic of the American Dream
 

The Curious Life of an Extra. 

The Atlantic | Danielle Sepulveres. Standing in the background, faking conversation, and usually being slightly out-of-focus in the camera frame might not seem glamorous - and, well, it's not, but it does offer unparalleled access to seeing the nuts and bolts of the television and film industry. For an aspiring writer laid off from a rote corporate job during the Recession, that may be a blessing in disguise
ETCETERA.
Powerful: A national memorial to US lynching victims is going up in Montgomery, Alabama. 

Work Keeps Me Young: Read Tom Petty's final interview

Op-Ed: A gun violence researcher has a change of heart (WashPo paywall).

Larry David and Bernie Sanders find out they are distant cousins (w/ video).

Here's when you should stop cussing in front of your infant (you know the answer already). 

Robots:  Americans are worried about literally every aspect of them (new data from Pew).

Cat Robots:  Bad news, cats - your jobs have been automated.

Go inside Denmark's new Lego house, an homage to the brick.

Scientists let a supercomputer invent an airplane wing from scratch - it came up with a bird wing

Culinary schools now offer food photography classes for Instagram. 

Clickbait: The FDA says 'Love' can't be listed as an ingredient in food products.

Historybook: RIP Tecumseh (1813); HBD Chester Arthur (1829); First televised Presidential address (1947); HBD Neil deGrasse Tyson (1958); HBD Mario Lemieux (1965); HBD PBS (1970); Barry Bonds breaks HR record (2001); RIP Rodney Dangerfield (2004); RIP Steve Jobs (2011).
"KNOWING WHERE YOU CAME FROM IS NO LESS IMPORTANT THAN KNOWING WHERE YOU ARE GOING."
-Neil deGrasse Tyson
 
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