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Look out LinkedIn. Take notice Tinder. It looks like TikTok may be adding two new killer apps that could really cement its place as the de facto social media platform of the future: job hunting via video resumes and online dating via video profiles.

CNET explains the jobs aspect:

“TikTok is reportedly launching a pilot program to help users find jobs and connect with companies. The short-form video app is testing a tool that lets brands essentially use TikTok as a recruiting platform, while users can post TikTok video resumes that companies evaluate, according to a Tuesday report by Axios

The service is reportedly being tested with a beta group of companies, including “several big brands” and sports leagues. The platform isn’t built into the TikTok app itself, according to Axios, but instead is a separate site that people can access from the app. Companies can use that web page to post jobs, and users can in turn upload their video resumes.”

And Benzinga explains the dating aspect:

“A third-party company is bringing online dating to the TikTok platform with Snack. The company is a ‘Tinder meets TikTok’ dating app, according to TechCrunch, and appeals to Gen Z users who use TikTok.

Snack users can post videos for potential matches. Videos show the users’ personalities in ways that static photos can not.'”

But that’s not all. TikTok also wants to get in on the e-commerce act with in app shopping.

As Gizmodo puts it:

“TikTok is apparently the latest platform to make the shift from social media site to a glorified digital mall. On Tuesday, Bloomberg reported that TikTok has started floating the idea of in-app shopping to brands over in Europe, hoping to hook young EU shoppers—and their wallets—in the process.

According to the report, this e-shopping feature is still in the early stages, and there isn’t a set deadline when TikTokers across the globe will start seeing it crop up into their feeds.”

Between job hunting, online dating, and e-commerce TikTok is well on its way towards becoming a global behemoth. A serious threat to Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and all the other social media sites and dating apps. If you haven’t checked it out yet you better not waste anymore time or risk getting left behind. I’ll see you on there.

How TikTok went from a fun viral app to a US national security concern
TikTok is blowing up.

The Army has unveiled a new version of night vision goggles that work significantly better than prior versions. And look a whole lot cooler in the process. Replacing the traditional green glow with white lines that make the images appear like something out of Tron.

Popular Mechanics explains:

“ENVG-B gives soldiers a crisper image of the battlefield than ever before and even allows soldiers to fire their weapons without exposing themselves to enemy fire.

The goggles, which the Army developed with L3Harris Technologies, are designed to provide a sharper night vision image than previous-generation goggles. The dual-tube setup provides a larger field of view than earlier goggles, leading to greater situational awareness and increased depth perception.

The use of white phosphor tubes does away with the ‘green glow’ of past systems while providing a sharper contrast. In fact, the contrast is so sharp, it resembles cel shading techniques used in video games.

The goggles provide improved vision in a variety of environments, including ‘dust, smoke, zero illumination, (and) subterranean,’ the Army says. An augmented reality compass that’s visible at the top of the field of view allows soldiers to constantly get their bearings without removing the goggles.”

These new optical displays are likely just the beginning. Further technological enhancements and Augmented Reality tie-ins are likely to join them on the battlefield in the near future as well. Allowing us to achieve success like never before.

Army Night Vision Goggles: What Do You See When You Wear Them?
Are the Army’s new Night Vision Goggles the Greatest Idea Ever?

I love being outdoors but I hate bug bites. Bug spray works to a certain extent but you know what would work better? If there was no such thing as mosquitoes! And thanks to a genetic modification we may be on the verge of achieving that goal. Or at least drastically reducing the disease carrying risk that modern mosquitoes maintain.

Time explains:

“That release began in late April, when, after a decade of planning, regulatory review and debate, Oxitec workers and local mosquito control personnel added water to a dozen plastic boxes containing the company’s ‘Friendly™’ mosquito eggs in six locations around the Keys, triggering their hatching process.

Oxitec’s Aedes aegypti mosquitoes—which the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved for use last year—are genetically modified to include a ‘self-limiting’ gene that produces a fatal protein. The mosquitoes are raised in a laboratory in the presence of tetracycline, an antibiotic that prevents the added gene from activating. The mosquitoes’ eggs are then left to hatch in the wild, without the antibiotic. The gene kills immature egg-laying females—the only ones that bite—but the males reach maturity, mate with wild females, and pass on their faulty gene. Then their female progeny die, causing the bloodsuckers’ population to crash.

About 1,000 mosquitoes will emerge from each of Oxitec’s boxes each week. All told, 140,000 will be released in the current phase of the trial, which will last at least through July, while nearly 20 million will take flight in the second phase beginning later this summer. Oxitech says that in a previous experiment in Brazil, mosquito populations fell by up to 95% during a 13-week trial. The goal of the Florida release is to gather more information and reproduce the company’s past results, in order to demonstrate to U.S. regulators that the technology works.

Oxitec CEO Grey Frandsen says his company’s work is nothing short of existential for humanity. Mosquito-borne diseases already kill more than 1 million people worldwide every year, and climate change stands to expand the range of the insects and the pathogens they carry to regions where they could not thrive before, lending even more urgency in the race to develop new countermeasures like Oxitec’s gene editing technology. The COVID-19 pandemic, meanwhile, has underscored our vulnerability to massive outbreaks of infectious disease—many of which spread via mosquitoes. ‘We are seeking to develop and scale new technologies that will in essence allow the human race to continue to exist on this planet,’ says Frandsen. ‘Insect pests are one of the most significant threats to that.'”

Of course there are risks with releasing genetically modified mosquitoes into the wild. Particularly the fact that wild mosquitoes may be a necessary evil that play a key role in maintaining local ecosystems. But if not and they cause more harm than good, then this genetic modification could finally turn the tide in our favor. One generation at a time.

Genetically modified mosquitoes to be released in Florida | khou.com
Is releasing genetically modified mosquitoes the Greatest Idea Ever?

Netflix and chill and create your own playlists, listen to podcasts, watch behind the scenes content and much more?! Well, that’s something that could actually happen in the near future thanks to the possibility of Netflix launching N-Plus, a subscription based portal for extra content that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to.

Slash Gear sums it up best:

“A Netflix survey has surfaced that revolves around a potential project called N-Plus, one that would — should it ever launch — possibly include features like show playlists, behind-the-scenes content, podcasts, and other content related to the company’s vast original library. N-Plus could, potentially, become home to the kind of content we already see it publish on social media platforms…

The survey hinted at the kind of features N-Plus may offer, such as the ability to create your own playlists and share them with others. Non-subscribers would only be able to watch the trailers for this content, potentially encouraging them to sign up for a subscription if they like what they see.

As well, the platform may contain podcasts in some way related to the shows, interviews with cast, and it may make the music from shows available. Beyond that, Netflix users may be able to provide feedback on TV shows that are in the pipeline but haven’t yet entered production, giving them the chance to influence the content.

The survey also indicates that users may be able to leave reviews for Netflix shows.”

When I first heard about N-Plus I wasn’t that intrigued. Seemed like a money grab to me. But there are a few concepts in here that I admittedly do like and would love to see intertwined into the Netflix experience including the ability to create and share your own playlists as well as being able to screen/critique shows in the development pipeline, potentially impacting the development slate.

Both of these ideas are similar in that they’re creative endeavors, giving you the chance to show off your tastes and influence the end product. And with that in mind Netflix has my full attention. Even if this is just a cash grab.

What is Netflix?
Is Netflix 2.0 on the way?

We’re already a pretty divided species. Split into distinct groups based on our races, religions, and countries of origin. But in the near future we may be divided even further. Between those of us who want to remain purely human and those of us who want to become biohackers. Who want to augment their bodies. Merge them with technology. And the killer app that brings transhumanism to the forefront may have just arrived. In the form of the PegLeg.

Wired explains:

“PegLeg is a wireless router and hard drive rolled into one small, subdermal device…It’s a little larger than a pack of gum, but once implanted it turns your body into a node of a local mesh network. Any Wi-Fi-enabled device can access the device’s network, and the implant can also mesh with other PegLegs to create what is, effectively, an internet of legs.

PegLeg doesn’t connect to the internet backbone that you’re using to read this article. Instead, it creates a local wireless network that anyone in the same room can access. The implant can store hundreds of gigabytes of data, stream movies or music to connected phones or computers, act as a server for an anonymized chat room or forum, and smuggle encrypted files across international borders. PegLeg was designed so that anyone who connects to the device’s network can upload or download files to the hard drive anonymously, but this radical openness raises thorny legal questions about who is responsible for the data stored in another person’s body.

Welcome to the age of thigh speed internet.”

Obviously the biohacking movement has huge implications for privacy and piracy going forward. The CIA’s job just got a whole lot more difficult. But it also has long-term implications for everyday citizens too. For what it means to be human.

Where do you stand on the issue?! Are you willing to stream movies through your legs?

Biohackers chase Johnny Mnemonic with 'Pegleg' implanted hard drive - The  Parallax
Is PegLeg the Greatest Idea Ever?

The other day I saw a tweet about a guy who gave up following the news. Instead he pays a friend to text him that days’ top stories. So their conversation this weekend might look something like….Elon Musk about to host SNL… Wreckage from Chinese spacecraft may land somewhere this weekend and no one knows where… Mushrooms found on Mars….Doge coin blowing up. Whatever the case may be. Sure beats doom scrolling if you ask me. And it goes along with something I’ve already noticed: the power of text messaging.

At any given time I have multiple text message conversations going on. Even multiple group conversations. Suffice it to say, I spend more time interacting with my friends via text message than I do Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or any other social media platform. Text messaging IS the new social media. The place we go to spread news, share memes, check up on one another, and generally keep in touch. It started with AIM and its continued on with our mobile devices.

Which is why I want to create a text based service known as Text.Me that would leverage AI to ratchet up our text experience. To take it to the next level. Instead of us breaking news to one another and sharing interesting articles the AI would learn what we like or don’t like and what we’re interested in and send us that information as soon as it becomes available.

Sure, it’s nice when our friends do it. Gives it a human touch. Shows us that they care. That they’re thinking about us. But they also might miss something that we’re interested in. A local event that they don’t know about. Breaking news about a niche topic that’s so obscure no one else even knows that you like it.

Which is where Text.Me would come in. The ultimate text thread, Text.Me would become your new best friend, keeping you in the loop and entertained at the same time with a steady stream of the latest memes. Thanks to a chatbot aspect you could even carry on a conversation with your new imaginary friend. And if you’re so inclined to bring things full circle you could even share what Text.Me sends you with others or invite them to join you in a group chat.

Either way, it’s clear that the future of social interactions line with text messaging above and beyond any other medium. And if that’s the case shouldn’t we step up our game?

Why Texting Is the Future of Recruiting | Inc.com
Is Text.Me the Greatest Idea Ever?

We already have museums dedicated to art, history, science, pop culture and everything in between. Nearly every possible niche covered. From roadside attractions to crown jewels of major cities there’s a museum for everyone. Everyone that is, except for Mother Nature.

That’s right. Thousands of museums around the world, and as far as I know, not a single one dedicated to nature. Science, sure. Natural history, absolutely. But just straight up nature? Anything and everything you’d find on the third rock from the sun? I’m not so sure. Arboretums, yes. Botanical Gardens, of course. But a one stop shop for everything?!

Which is why I’d like to start one. But I just don’t want to discuss how weather patterns work or talk about the kinds of rocks that you might find when out for a stroll. Our current museums already do that to a certain extent. Instead, what I want to do is to create a huge sprawling complex that actually brings everything that you might encounter in nature under one roof.

Part Butterfly Wonderland, part Biosphere, part Aquarium, part Zoo, part botanical garden this homage to nature would be more than a museum. It would be a shrine. You could walk through a jungle, cave, and barren desert on your way to checking out a glacier, exploring an underground cavern, and hiking a snowcapped mountain. More of a eco theme park than a pure museum you’d be off on a grand adventure as you swim in cenotes, traverse Class Three rapids, and tackle ropes courses high up in the treetops of a tropical rain forest.

Just like a traditional museum you’ll learn a thing or two but unlike a traditional museum you’ll actually get your hands dirty doing so. On the miles and miles of hiking trails throughout the complex you can explore one of the many waterfalls on hand, go bird watching, or go on a scavenger hunt to find all of the various different types of mushrooms growing in the Forbidden Forest. But if all that sound too adventurous for you then you can take things slower and opt for AR/VR based activities that will enable you to see a Rainbow up close and personal and experience the Northern Lights just like you’ve always wanted.

Obviously, there’s no substitute for the real thing but thanks to Climate Change the real thing is in danger of going away. Which is exactly why we need to build an experience to mirror nature as best we can so that future generations can continue to enjoy it as much as we do. Even if that’s an indoor, mostly artificial experience.

World Tallest Indoor Waterfall - #singapore #airport #green | Changi,  Changi airport singapore, Indoor waterfall
Is an interactive Nature Museum the Greatest Idea Ever?

One of my biggest fears in life is silence in social situations. The awkward pauses. The long periods of contemplation. The longing for your cell phone to save you from the discomfort. How do married people do it?! Spending 24/7 with someone, all-day everyday?! It seems like a no-win situation. No matter how much you like someone, no matter how well you get along, no matter how many things you have in common at some point you’re going to run out of things to say. Which is why I think it would be great if there was an app that always gave you something to do, something to talk about.

My motivation comes from binge watching The Americans, a series about a married Russian couple spying on Uncle Sam near the end of the Cold War while pretending to be a boring American family that runs a travel agency. Elizabeth (Keri Russell) and her husband always have something to talk about because there’s always a mission to talk about. Logistics to discuss. Decisions to make. Outcomes to analyze. Reports to file. When you’re constantly on the go, pretending to be other people, sneaking around, putting yourself in near death situations, there’s never a dull moment. Their pillow talk isn’t limited to annoying office co-workers or school field trips that their kids are taking. It’s about all the crazy things they just did and are about to do.

Now, I’m not suggesting an app that has us going around stealing state secrets or seducing people with high level security clearances like that app in season three of Westworld. But I am suggesting an app that gives us benign missions to go on. That gives us things to do. Purely altruistic endeavors but interesting excursions nonetheless. Imagine for instance that you’re lying in bed at night when your phone buzzes with the familiar sound of a new mission. You pick it up and find out that you have 48 hours to plant a garden in a neighbor’s yard. Or 24 hours to find a lost dog in order to collect a $500 reward. All of a sudden you have something to talk about. And talk you will as mission after mission comes in ranging from volunteering efforts to searching for rare antiques for wealthy clients. As you do risqué things like go streaking or achieve more mundane objectives like set up a local lending library.

To support this effort an entire KGB like network would be established enabling you to sign up either as an operative (the married couple or lone individual who wants to be given missions) or as someone who works at “The Center” i.e. the people who come up with the missions whether they be non profit organizations or random people who need help getting shit done. Except that this time the KGB stands for Kindly Give Back.

Over time not only will these married couples stave off boredom and monotony but their neighborhoods will wind up thriving as well as a sense of community blossoms and all their secretive efforts pay off. They’ll be heroes. They just won’t be able to tell anyone.

Small Screen: The Americans spy series gains new relevance | Times Colonist
Is an app that gives you secret missions to do the Greatest Idea Ever?

You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. Which is why I’m a big fan of the shoot your shot trend, the phenomenon that’s been sweeping through Clubhouse and other social media outlets where people take the “stage” to pitch a business idea, seek employment, or sell themselves to potential suitors. All in a public forum for the whole world to see. The ultimate leap of faith.

As Heart a Fact puts it:

“The phrase ‘shoot your shot’’ is generally used by late millennials or early Gen Z-ers. It means the exact same thing as flirting or courting, but more aggressively. In other words, you have to let your guards down, and go for it. Put caution to the wind and say exactly how you feel. 

Let’s pretend you’re a basketball player. For your team to win, you must score more baskets than the other team. You can dribble the ball all you want, but if you don’t shoot your shot, you’ll never score. Worse yet, there are other players on the other team trying to score as well.”

So no matter what your goal is (finding a romantic partner, landing a job, etc.) you have to let your guard down and just shoot your shot if you ever want to get anywhere. Makes sense. But unfortunately the opportunities that one has to shoot their shot are limited. The trend is growing, yes. But it’s still just starting out. Which is why I’d like to shoot my own shot and propose that we create a shoot your shot app known as Shop-a-Shot where people would shop around their content, whatever it may be, to potential suitors. Named after the famous carnival/arcade basketball shooting game Pop-a-Shot.

What I’m imagining is a Bumble like app where you can toggle between different modes (dating, ideas, full-time employment, etc.) and swipe through 15 or 30 second videos of people shooting their shot. Swipe right if you want to learn more and get in contact with the person. Swipe left if you aren’t interested. The videos would automatically play one after another so you could theoretically entertain yourselves for hours or anytime you have a few spare minutes. A desktop version that operates more like YouTube could also work.

Either way, you’d have a widespread platform that reaches millions of people, giving everyone from hungry entrepreneurs to lonely bachelors the opportunity to rise to the occasion, to shoot their shot. Once and for all.

How to shoot your shot | oucampus
Is Shop-a-Shot the Greatest Idea Ever?

The other day I saw a joke online that gave me a great idea. The joke went like this:

“A new supermarket just opened up nearby.

It has an automatic water mister to keep the produce fresh. Just before it goes on, you hear the sound of distant thunder and smell fresh rain.

When you pass the milk cases, you hear cows mooing and there is the scent of freshly mowed hay.

In the meat department there is the aroma of charcoal grilled steaks with onions.

When you approach the egg case, you hear hens clucking and cackling, and the air is filled with the pleasing aroma of bacon and eggs frying.

The bread department features the tantalizing smell of fresh baked bread and cookies.

I don’t buy toilet paper there anymore, though.”

Haha. Very funny. But seriously, why don’t we make such a store for real?! Couldn’t Amazon pull this off technologically in their new Amazon Go Grocery Stores?! Wouldn’t this be the coolest thing ever?! And practical too. For you could actually navigate through the store via these sound effects, knowing in an instant what section to head towards to find the next item on your shopping list. It would certainly make food shopping easier for visually impaired people at the very least.

But it would also do much more than that. Turning food shopping from a chore into a source of entertainment in of itself. Just don’t go when you’re hungry. If you do you’d buy everything in sight after catching a whiff of all those intoxicating scents. Especially the bacon.

Supermarket Sound Effects - YouTube
Are supermarket sound effects the Greatest Idea Ever?