Delicious Digest #22 - Trolls, Metaverse, and Silly Walks

A tasty newsletter of what I’ve seen in (mostly) tech & games and thought was interesting. This week: Trolls, Metaverse, and Silly Walks.

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Travis Scott Fortnite

😳 Must reads of the week

◼ No, Covid-19 is nothing like the flu. Link

◼ “Esports and the Dangers of Serving at the Pleasure of a King” – thoughtful piece by Matthew Ball on the issues that may hinder esports growth. Link

◼ “There are decades when nothing happens, and then there are weeks when decades happen.” Ben Evans on how the Covid-19 shock might accelerate disruptive transitions in various industries. Link

🗞 News

◼ “Disruptions, downturns, and recessions make the weak weaker and the strong stronger.” Om Malik on how the present crisis is making big tech bigger. Link

◼ “Trolls World Tour” made more money in three weeks of “forced” direct-to-digital release than the original movie did during five months in theaters. Link ($)

◼ Google is applying deep-learning to redesigning chip layouts, one of the most time-intensive and trickiest tasks in chip development. AI is everywhere. Link

◼ Netflix has added 15m new subscribers, twice as many as expected, most of them outside the US. Link

◼ “Copy and paste the real world with your phone using augmented reality”. All that VC funding had got to give some useful results eventually. Link (via Rob Sillery)

◼ “Covid-19 conspiracy theorists are still getting millions of views on YouTube, even as the platform cracks down on health misinformation.” Views make money. Link

◼ “France is using AI to check whether people are wearing masks on public transport”. Here’s a headline in which I would not have expected to read “France” three months ago. Desperate times, desperate measures. AI is truly everywhere. Link

◼ “Deepfake Music Is So Good It Might Be Illegal” – listen to that embedded track, it’s insane. Is this a copyright issue? Or impersonation? AI is everywhere and it’s getting better at an uncanny rate. Link

◼ TSMC, one of the largest chipmakers in the world, has started the development of a 2nm lithography process. To fathom just how insanely small this is: it’s just about 10x bigger than the diameter of a silicon atom. Link

🕹 Games

◼ Scopely keeps expanding into more brands, acquires Scrabble GO maker PierPlay. Link

◼ Less than 2% of Steam users own a VR headset. If VR doesn’t lift off now, it never will. Link

◼ Fortnite had a massive “in-game concert” event with Travis Scott, just released a “Party Royale” mode, and will try to boost this with an even bigger events. Into the Metaverse we go. Also, I feel old… Links: Travis Scott Event | Party Royale Premiere

◼ Speaking of Fortnite: it now has over 350m registered players. Amazing number. No word on daily or monthly active players though. Link

◼ Nintendo has sold 55.7m Switch consoles so far (impressive!) and most game sales are first-party Nintendo titles. Not surprising when you have at least three evergreen system-seller franchises. I’ll buy any new Nintendo console as long as there’s a new Mario Kart. Link
See also: Animal crossing has sold 13.4m units thus far. Link

◼ Riot has a new hit with Valorant – and old problems with harassment. Link

◼ Amazon keeps making games: Crucible, a kind-of CS:GO/Overwatch/Valorant/LoL shooter will launch on PC on May 20th. Fun times for shooter fans. Link

😋 Tasty Tidbits

◼ “Now We Know How Quickly Our Trashed Planet Can Heal”. Link

◼ Unboxing Apple’s $700 Mac Pro wheels. The epitome of unboxing porn. Link (Video)

◼ The Silly Walk is back! Link (via Xavi Guardiola)

◼ Mouth-watering art: “For 32 Years, This Japanese Chef Has Been Making a Painting of Every Single Meal He Eats.” Link

◼ Hubble’s 30th anniversary image. Link (Video)

◼ “The Obscure, Forgotten Spanish Jeeps of the 1960s”. Link

◼ “A vacation + a disaster = an adventure.” 68 brilliant pieces of “unsolicited advice” from Kevin Kelly on his 68th birthday. Link

I work for King. All views in this newsletter are personal and my own. They do not represent the views of King or ActivisionBlizzard. This newsletter is provided for informational purposes only and no investment advice. This newsletter links to other websites and information obtained from third-party sources and I cannot ensure nor verify accuracy of the information or its appropriateness for a given situation.