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These tiny wasp-inspired drones can open a door 40 times their weight, and could one day be used in disaster zones

Researchers have built tiny microdrones capable of tugging open a door 40 times their weight. They took inspiration from predatory wasps, which can drag large prey along the ground. One researcher said the technology could be adapted for more complex tasks such as moving debris or retrieving objects from disaster zones.

Researchers have built microdrones, capable of tugging open a door 40 times their weight, by studying the biology of predatory wasps.

Robotics researchers at Stanford University and École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland wanted to find a way for tiny microdrones to exert "forceful tugging," so they turned to biomimetics — meaning they took inspiration from the natural world.

They observed that wasps are able to carry away large prey by dragging it along the ground. They used this behaviour as a model when creating tiny microdrones, which they named "FlyCroTugs."


A former Facebook executive called out Apple CEO Tim Cook’s hypocrisy over privacy

Former Facebook security boss Alex Stamos criticised Tim Cook's hypocrisy after the Apple CEO launched a blistering attack on firms that flout user privacy. Stamos pointed to Apple's trade practices in China, which block privacy-enabling features like end-to-end encryption and installing VPNs. He said for many tech companies, China is an "ethical blindspot."

Tim Cook launched a blistering attack on tech companies that flout user privacy in a speech on Wednesday, but a former Facebook exec has accused him of not practising what he preaches.


Facebook gets maximum fine for the catastrophic Cambridge Analytica data breach

Facebook has been stung with the maximum possible fine by Britain's privacy watchdog for the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

The UK's Information Commissioner's Office fined Facebook £500,000 ($645,000), the highest punishment it can dish out for a data breach.

More follows.

 


Tesla said it expects tariffs on Chinese parts to cost around $50 million during Q4 (TSLA)

Tesla said on Wednesday in its third-quarter earnings letter that it expects tariffs on parts made in China to cost around $50 million during the fourth quarter of this year. The automaker said it expects gross margins on its Model S sedan and Model X SUV to fall slightly due to increased tariffs on Chinese parts. Gross margins for the Model 3 sedan should remain stable, Tesla said, due to manufacturing cost efficiencies and fixed cost absorption. 

 

Tesla said on Wednesday in its third-quarter earnings letter that it expects tariffs on parts made in China to cost around $50 million during the fourth quarter of this year.


12 startups that failed this year and took $1.4 billion in VC funding with them

Just because everyone from Ashton Kutcher to Kevin Durant are getting into startups doesn't mean they're all success stories.

After all, nine out of 10 startups will end up failing, and that means the money that venture capitalists put into funding these ideas can disappear too. From analyzing just 12 startups that failed this year, PitchBook found that around $1.4 billion in VC funding wasn't enough to save these businesses.


Tesla's car deposits decreased during the third quarter, even though it posted a surprise profit (TSLA)

Tesla said vehicle deposits decreased slightly during the third quarter to $906 million. The automaker received $942 million in deposits during the second quarter and $984 million during the first quarter. Despite the decrease in deposits, Tesla beat Wall Street expectations by posting adjusted earnings of $2.90 per share on $6.8 billion in revenue.

 

Tesla said vehicle deposits decreased slightly during the third quarter to $906 million. The automaker received $942 million in deposits during the second quarter and $984 million during the first quarter.


Tesla is outselling many of its luxury rivals, but it still lags behind Mercedes, BMW, and Lexus (TSLA)

Tesla revealed on Wednesday that it "delivered almost 70,000" cars and SUVs in the US during the third quarter of 2018.  Tesla's Q3 delivery total puts the company on par with its luxury rivals. Audi, Acura, and Infiniti were outsold in the US by Tesla during Q3 2018.  However,

We’re altering the climate so severely that we’ll soon face apocalyptic repercussions. Sucking carbon dioxide out of the air could save us.

The Earth is warming so rapidly that most experts agree we'll need to suck carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere in order to avoid the worst consequences of climate change. A new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine lays out a range of options for how to do that.  But the authors say developing these negative-emissions technologies requires large-scale investment from the government — and the funding has to come immediately. 


Tesla made 5,300 Model 3s during the last week of Q3 — but it said it would make 6,000 weekly by the end of August (TSLA)

Tesla made 5,300 Model 3 sedans during the final week of the third quarter, less than the weekly goal of 6,000 it had set for the end of August. The automaker did manage to meet its guidance for total Model 3 production, making 53,239 after projecting it would make between 50,000 and 55,000, resulting in an average production rate of around 4,095 Model 3s per week.  Tesla said in July that it expected to make 6,000 Model 3s in a week by the end of August.  The automaker did not say if it had achieved that rate of production at any point during the third quarter.

 

Tesla made 5,300 Model 3 sedans during the final week of the third quarter, less than the


Growth for Microsoft's cloud business Azure sees the biggest slowdown in three years (MSFT)

Although Microsoft had a solid quarter, Azure's revenue growth is the slowest its been since Microsoft started regularly posting Azure's revenue growth.  Revenue growth for Azure was 76%, down from 89% last quarter. Analysts believe Azure will still continue to be a key driver for Microsoft's business.

Microsoft dazzled Wall Street by topping revenue and profit expectations in its quarterly results on Wednesday, but a close look at one notable part of the company's business reveals a worrisome trend.