Friday Five for April 1, 2022

Following is a list of things BruinTechs should know and share with others:

1. UCLA 3D/XR Day

Join us on March 22, as we launch Bruinverse, a VR environment filled with UCLA's latest XR projects and workshops! The two week scavenger hunt raffle will culminate in a half-day summit on April 6 with a keynote, lightning talks, and engaging conversations on all things 3D and immersive. Check out the schedule and RSVP here.

2. The best and worst April Fools' jokes from around the web

The tech world sure does love a good prank.

While some sat out on April Fools’, a number of big tech companies embraced the opportunity to waste time this way. Continue reading.

3. Amazon workers in New York close to forming historic union after key vote

Amazon workers in New York are close to voting to form a union – a major win for labor activists who have failed in previous efforts to organize at the tech giant that is now the second largest private employer in the US.

Workers at an Amazon fulfillment center in Staten Island will find out on Friday whether or not they want to form a union, Amazon’s first in the US where it now employs over one million people. Continue reading.

4. Are tech companies removing evidence of war crimes?

Videos using various Ukrainian hashtags have had billions of views.

But Ukrainians uploading videos from the ground could be generating more than "likes".

They may well be uploading a piece in a jigsaw of evidence that will one day be used to prosecute war crimes.

But they may also be breaking TikTok's and other social-media companies' strict rules on graphic content. Continue reading.

5. Prosperity Gospel

Toward the end of last year, Brooklyn art collective MSCHF programmed a robotic arm to make 999 copies of an original Andy Warhol print called Fairies. They mixed in the real one (valued around $20,000) with the forgeries, “obliterat[ing] the trail of provenance,” and sold each print for $250. “In some way,” Kevin Wiesner, the collective’s “co-chief creative officer,” told CNN, “we’re democratizing it by letting everyone have what could be a Warhol.” One buyer really did walk off with the original Fairies, but any value or meaning that might be ascribed to its genuineness has been buried. What has been “democratized” is not ownership of an actual, auratic object, but the fantasy of possibly owning one. One might similarly say that Powerball lotteries democratize wealth. Continue reading.