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Spotify's new refugee-themed playlist is being criticized by some people for being in bad taste

Spotify released a 20-song homage to global artists, called "The Refugee Playlist," in the wake of a travel ban. It quickly drew charges of poor-taste from some observers.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order on January 27 that restricted people from seven majority-Muslim countries from entering the US, in an effort to keep out "radical Islamic terrorists." The ban sparked protests in cities around the world over the weekend.

Tech executives from Google cofounder Sergey Brin to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckberg also chimed in, expressing a range of emotions over how restrictions on immigration might affect the global tech industry.


The next unicorn may not come from Silicon Valley
Posted January 31, 2017 0:19 AM
The next unicorn may not come from Silicon Valley

Peruse the headlines, and you’ll find hundreds of articles predicting the “next Silicon Valley.”  Pundits claim that the growing cost of living in the Bay Area is driving businesses away to more affordable regions that are rich in tech talent such as Austin, Phoenix, Boulder, and Miami.

But try as they might, these “hubs” won’t ever beat Northern California at its own game – the area will continue to dominate information technology because of its unique arbitrage of thought, culture and research.

But that’s okay, because striving to replicate the success of the Bay Area limits us by imposing an arbitrary constraint on our imagination.  After all, does Silicon Valley represent the pinnacle of success in human innovation, or are there regions that have the potential to evolve into something even greater?  

"Tech" is Dead

Tesla's new Powerpack battery storage project in Southern California is the largest on Earth (TSLA)

MIRA LOMA, California — Tesla cut the ribbon on a massive battery storage facility in the Southern California desert, 60 miles east of Los Angeles on Monday.

The Powerpack project, a joint venture with local electricity provider, Southern California Edison (SCE), will support grid operation during peak hours and improve the integration of renewable energy resources.

"This project is exactly in line with our mission to accelerate sustainable technology and sustainable energy broadly for the world," Tesla Chief Technology Officer, JB Straubel, said.

"Storage is a piece that's been missing on the grid since the grid was invented, so thanks to these technologies, we're right at the turning point of being able to deliver storage and use renewables — solar, wind, and others — that can power people's needs for longer parts of the day," Straubel said.

The Powerpack is a commercial-scale variation of


Google's Sergey Brin and Sundar Pichai speak at company immigration ban rally, while thousands of Googlers take to the streets (GOOG, GOOGL)

Google CEO Sundar Pichai and cofounder Sergey Brin addressed crowds of employees rallying against President Trump's immigration ban on Monday, as about 2,000 Google staffers in offices worldwide took to the streets with signs. 

At least one hundred people outside Google's downtown San Francisco offices took to the streets on Monday afternoon, carrying signs and chanting. "You build a wall, we'll tear it down," was one such chant.

Google employees are sharing photos from this rally on Twitter, under the hashtag "#GooglersUnite." Executives like Nest CEO Marian Fawaz are visible addressing the crowds in these pictures.


'Outraged by this order' — Here's the speech Google cofounder Sergey Brin just gave attacking Trump's immigration ban (GOOG, GOOGL)

On Monday afternoon, around 2,000 Google employees left their desks and took to the streets to protest against President Donald Trump's controversial immigration ban.

This employee-led rally was attended by Google cofounder Sergey Brin, who addressed the crowd about his own experiences: Brin's family came here as refugees from the USSR when he was a child, at the height of the Cold War. His remarks, as captured on YouTube by a Googler in attendance, take many jabs at President Trump's policies.

"So many people were obviously outraged by this order, as am I myself, being an immigrant and a refugee," Bring told the crowd. 

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Trump's controversial national security advisor Michael Flynn appears to have deleted his Twitter account

President Trump's controversial national security advisor Michael Flynn has apparently deleted his twitter account. 

The retired Army lieutenant general was known for spreading conspiracy theories via Twitter, using his @GenFlynn account.

For instance, days before the election, he retweeted articles published on right-wing blogs debunked as fake news that accused Clinton of everything from from "money laundering" to "sex crimes with children."

Flynn earned a reputation in the military for effectively fighting terrorist networks, according to media reports. He headed the Defense Intelligence Agency from 2012 to 2014 before he was reportedly let go for


'Immigration is an essential part of America’s strength': Here's the internal Fox memo on Trump's executive action

21st Century Fox executives Lachlan and James Murdoch on Monday addressed employees about President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration.

In a memo to employees, which was obtained by Business Insider, the duo declared "immigration is an essential part of America's strength" and said the company's priority was to determine the effect of the order's "broad implications" on its employees. 

The pair, sons of media mogul Rupert Murdoch, noted that the "global" company was founded by immigrants. They said they were monitoring what they still believed to be a "fluid situation."

Read the full memo below:

This phone case is also a drone designed to take selfies

If you can hide your arm or selfie stick in a selfie, good for you.

For those who can't, there's a drone for that.

The Airselfie is a tiny drone that's housed in a phone case, and it lets you take selfies or group shots from further away than you could with your arms or a selfie stick.

Airselfie already went through its Kickstarter campaign, where it amassed more than €500,000 (about $534,000), and the company behind the tiny selfie-taking drone is now taking pre-orders

The Airselfie costs $260, and it'll be ready for shipping in May this year.

Check it out:

This is the Airselfie.

 

It's a tiny drone that fits inside a phone case. And it has a built-in 5-megapixel camera.

A bizarre photo of 80 giant birds on a plane is taking over the Internet — but it isn't as strange as you think

Flying on a plane is generally an awful experience, but next time you're crammed in the middle seat counting down the hours, be thankful there aren't 80 birds perched in coach with you.

An image is going viral on Reddit of a Saudi prince who brought 80 birds on a plane Monday morning:

We've reached out to the author of the Reddit thread about the photo and will update the post if we learn anything else about which airline accommodated the birds, how long it took to situate them, and generally how well-behaved they were on the flight.

The author of the Reddit thread says the birds are hawks, but it's more likely they are actually falcons.


Economist Stephen Moore jumps from Fox News to CNN

Economist Stephen Moore will depart Fox News for CNN this week after more than three years serving as one of the Fox's top contributors.

"It was a hard decision," Moore told Business Insider over the phone, confirming the news.

"CNN made a really good offer," he added. "I have nothing against Fox — I had great times at Fox. It was a hard decision."

Moore said he had a "great conversation with Jeff Zucker," the CNN president, and "thought it was a good time" to change networks.

A prominent free-market economist, Moore previously was a member of The Wall Street Journal editorial board. He currently serves as the distinguished visiting fellow at The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank based in Washington, DC.