Here’s what we’re reading today:
1. How exactly does the Tesla billionaire plan to get us on to Mars?
“It starts with a really big rocket, something at least 200 feet tall when fully assembled. In a simulation of what SpaceX calls its Interplanetary Transport System, a spacecraft loaded with astronauts will launch on top of a 39-foot-wide booster that produces a whopping 28 million pounds of thrust. Using 42 Raptor engines, the booster will accelerate the assemblage to 5,374 miles an hour.”
2. A little softer, and a little more professional
“Starting very soon, your Instagram feed is going to look different — a little softer, a little more professional, a little bit deeper. It’s not because of anything Instagram is going to do, though. It’s because of a new feature on the iPhone 7 Plus: ‘portrait mode,’ which allows you to mimic in your phone photos the same depth of focus and filmic blur you see in photographs taken by expensive SLR cameras.”
3. Meet the Romanian hackers who are living large off money they stole from you
“At the foot of the Carpathian mountains, in Romania, lies the small town of Râmnicu Vâlcea. InfoSec people called it Hackerville or Cybercrime Central, but its moniker could also be BMW City. German cars with lots of horsepower squeal and screech and spin when the lights go out.” Motherboard looks a world away to Romania, where cybercrime, like mailing you a brick instead of that iPhone you bought off eBay, is big business and easy money.
4. You don’t have to be stupid to work here, but it helps
“How organizations enshrine collective stupidity and employees are rewarded for checking their brains at the office door.”
5. Teetotalers in Chief
“If elected, Donald J. Trump would join an intimate clique of non-boozing American presidents.”