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Look past the crisis the DC movie universe seems to be in right now and you'll see a plan taking shape

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 1:06pm
Henry Cavill as Superman.
  • Confusion has swirled in recent months around the future of the DC movie universe.
  • But a plan is taking shape, based on what new DC Studios co-CEO James Gunn and others have confirmed.
  • It includes big shakeups for Superman and Wonder Woman.

On the surface, the DC movie universe appears to be in crisis right now.

Reports and speculation have swirled about what new DC Studios bosses James Gunn and Peter Safran have planned for the franchise, stirring confusion and responses from Gunn himself, actors, and filmmakers.

If you look beyond the mess, a plan seems to be taking shape. But there will be some casualties on the road to the new 10-year plan for the DC universe.

Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman in "Wonder Woman 1984."Superman and Wonder Woman are heading for big changes 

One casualty of Gunn and Safran's vision is Henry Cavill, who played Superman in "Man of Steel," "Batman v Superman," and "Justice League." 

Both Gunn and Cavill confirmed on social media this week that the actor wouldn't be reprising his role. Gunn, who directed Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy" movie and DC's "The Suicide Squad," said that he is writing a new Superman movie focused on a younger version of the character, but that it wouldn't be an origin story.

"In the initial stages, our story will be focusing on an earlier part of Superman's life, so the character will not be played by Henry Cavill," Gunn tweeted

Gunn added that he and Safran met with Cavill about "a number of exciting possibilities to work together in the future," suggesting Cavill could play a different DC character.

Gunn and Safran also appear to be rethinking the future of Wonder Woman.

The Hollywood Reporter first reported last week that the third "Wonder Woman" movie would no longer be moving forward in its current form, and that it didn't fit in with the future of the new DC film universe.

The Wrap then reported that director Patty Jenkins had walked away from the project after rejecting studio notes, prompting Jenkins to dispute the report.

"I never walked away," Jenkins said in a statement on Twitter. "I was open to considering anything asked of me. It was my understanding there was nothing I could do to move anything forward at this time."

It leaves Wonder Woman actor Gal Gadot's future in the role up in the air for the time being.

Robert Pattinson as Batman in "The Batman."Standalone DC movies will still exist outside of the new universe

So what of DC's other major character?

Variety reported this week that Gunn and Safran were considering implementing the world of "The Batman" in their wider universe. Gunn called the report "entirely untrue" on Twitter.

"The Batman," which earned $770 million worldwide earlier this year, was conceived as separate from the larger, connected universe, and a sequel is already in the works.

Gunn tweeted last month that some standalone DC projects would still exist outside of his and Safran's planned universe. That would presumably also include "Joker" and its upcoming sequel.

But another Batman could be returning to the new DC universe, in another capacity. Ben Affleck, who played the character in "Batman v Superman" and "Justice League," wants to direct a future DC movie and has met with Gunn and Safran, Gunn tweeted this week.

Before Gunn and Safran can implement their vision, they have to get through the next year of DC movies, which were greenlit and made before they took over. They include "Shazam! Fury of the Gods" in March; "The Flash" in June; "Blue Beetle" in August; and "Aquaman and the Lost City" in December.

It's unclear how these movies could, or if they even would, play a role in their plans, and they carry their own baggage (controversy has swirled around "The Flash," in particular, with star Ezra Miller pleading not guilty to  burglary and petit larceny charges in October).

But based on initial reports and Gunn's comments, we now know:

  • Henry Cavill won't be playing Superman in favor of a younger version of the character. 
  • The third "Wonder Woman" movie is on ice.
  • "The Batman" will remain a standalone world, separate from the new DC universe.
  • Ben Affleck has expressed an interest in directing a DC movie.

Gunn teased his overall vision last month in a series of tweets, noting that he and Safran are focused on "the story going forward, hammering out the new DCU, & telling the Biggest Story Ever Told across multiple films, television shows, & animated projects."

Read the original article on Business Insider

How cockatoos are outsmarting humans to feast on our garbage

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 1:00pm
  • As cities expand, scientists are examining the relationship between animals and human garbage.
  • Cockatoos in one Australian town have discovered ingenious ways to pry open garbage bins and feast on food waste.
  • But just because wildlife has access to human food, doesn't mean it's good for them. 

As cities around the world grow, scientists are taking a closer look at animals that eat human garbage. In one Australian suburb, wild cockatoos taught themselves how to open garbage bins. And they're outsmarting humans who have devised methods to keep them closed.

But just because wildlife has access to human food, doesn't mean it's good for them. 

If you saw this video and live in Australia, the Big City Birds project invites you to fill out this survey on bin-opening by cockatoos:

Read the original article on Business Insider

Don't blame the Bahamas for FTX's implosion, foreign minister says as the disgraced company's lawyers hurl accusations of complicity

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:45pm
Sam Bankman-Fried and a Bahamas government building in Nassau.
  • FTX lawyers want to deny liquidators access to company records, claiming the Bahamian government could use it to swipe money away from FTX.
  • But it isn't the fault of the Bahamas that FTX is embroiled in its financial troubles, according to foreign minister Fred Mitchell.
  • "Every day there is some accusation being hurled at The Bahamas, but it is clear the jurisdiction of the alleged fraud is not the reason the fraud happened," Mitchell said.

Don't blame the Bahamas for FTX's implosion, the nation's foreign minister said on Friday, after lawyers from the disgraced crypto exchange accused the Bahamian government of being complicit with Sam Bankman-Fried.

Court-appointed liquidators for FTX's Bahamas-based business asked for key records within the crypto exchange, including access to company accounts and data. But FTX's lawyers stood against that request in US bankruptcy court on Wednesday, claiming that the Bahamian government could use the information to steal assets from the company. 

John Ray III, who has stepped in as CEO for the embattled crypto exchange, said at a congressional hearing this week that the Bahamian government has already swiped $100 million from FTX as the firm was declaring bankruptcy. He claimed officials were colluding with Sam Bankman-Fried to return money back to FTX account holders.

"Unlike the Chapter 11 process, there is no transparency in the process in the Bahamas … We have repeatedly asked them for clarity on what they've been doing, and we've been shot down on that," Ray said at the hearing.

The Securities Commission of the Bahamas has disputed those claims, and Bahamas foreign minister Fred Mitchell denounced the accusations in a voice recording distributed via WhatsApp on Friday.

"Every day there is some accusation being hurled at The Bahamas, but it is clear the jurisdiction of the alleged fraud is not the reason the fraud happened," Mitchell said, per Reuters' report. He added that the situation was a "blame game" started by FTX's legal team.

"We in the Bahamas can ask the question: How did the mastermind of FTX get on the front page of Forbes magazine, a US-based magazine? Which nation's press called him the next Warren Buffett? Clearly that was the United States," he added.

Sam Bankman-Fried was arrested on multiple charges this week, including fraud, money laundering, and conspiracy after the collapse of his crypto exchange shed light on glaring accounting scandals. He is currently being held at a Bahamian prison as liquidators continue to probe FTX's finances.

Read the original article on Business Insider

39 unique gift ideas from 'Shark Tank', including plenty that will still arrive in time for the holidays

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:44pm

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Whether you're tuning in for the 14th season of "Shark Tank" for its pitches or the entertaining banter between the entrepreneur judges, it's an exciting show if you love innovative, creative products.

In fact, many of the best pitches have moved on to become household and everyday staples, from Squatty Potties to splatter guards.

That's why the products from the show tend to make especially good gifts: Besides being something your giftee probably doesn't own yet, they usually solve a common problem or annoyance. Conveniently, most are also available on Amazon with free two-day shipping for Prime members, so you can get them as last-minute gifts.

Cruelty-free lipstick from a Black-owned brand

The Lip Bar Nonstop Liquid Matte Lipstick, $13 at Amazon and The Lip Bar

The Lip Bar is a Black-owned beauty brand that prides itself on creating vegan, cruelty-free makeup like its tinted moisturizer and bronzer/blush. This bestselling liquid lipstick comes in a range of matte shades, from deep purples to neutral tones.

Socks that have great arch support — and also give back

Bombas Women's Tri-Block Marl Ankle Socks, from $22.99 at Amazon and Bombas

Bombas socks are the best we've ever worn — they use a honeycomb weave for extra arch support and come in an array of fun colors. But beyond that, the company donates a pair of socks to a homeless shelter for every one bought, making it a gift that gives back.

A classic Squatty Potty

Squatty Potty Oslo Folding Bamboo Toilet Stool, $37.99 at Amazon

The perfect gift for someone with a sense of humor, this sleeker bamboo version of the classic Squatty Potty isn't just practical; when they're done, they can just fold it up and stash it away.

A hole-less belt with a removable buckle

Mission Belt Men's Leather Ratchet Belt, from $39.95 at Amazon and Mission Belt

For anyone who hates the look of worn-down holes in a belt, this one uses a lever to easily extend and remove the belt. It also comes with a detachable buckle for easy passage through airport security.

A frying pan guard to block splatter

Frywall 10 Splatter Guard, $21.95 at Amazon

This ingenious device is designed to block the common splatters that happen from cooking with oil. Beyond preventing hot oil from splattering on your hands, it keeps stovetops and walls clean of the otherwise inevitable oil and sauce stains.

Delicious, protein-packed batter for pancakes or waffles

Kodiak Cakes Frontier Flapjack and Waffle Mix, from $6.45 at Amazon and Kodiak Cakes

For people who love a sweet breakfast but would like it to be a bit more filling, this protein-enriched mix is a great gift. Beyond being flexible enough to use for pancakes or waffles, it comes in flavors from birthday cake to almond poppy seed, with a plant-based option available as well.

A silicone wedding band for outdoor adventures

Enso Rings Women's Infinity Silicone Wedding Ring, from $17.49 at Amazon and Enso Rings

Wearing a wedding or engagement ring when hiking or swimming can be risky — that's why those who want to display theirs without losing or damaging it should consider this silicone version. Its soft yet durable material adjusts to swelling throughout the day, and it comes in a range of fun colors.

A pack of mints that boost energy

Neuro Energy & Focus Mints, from $42 at Amazon and Neuro

For people who want a burst of energy without needing to chug a cup of jo, these mints are an absolute game changer. They have caffeine, l-theanine, and B vitamins to naturally increase focus and mental endurance.

A magnetic holder for their glasses, name badge, and more

Readerest Magnetic Eyeglass Holders (2-Pack), $22.99 at Amazon

If you have a giftee who keeps losing their glasses, the Readerest Magnetic Eyeglass Holders may help them out. It works by creating a strong, damage-free loop on your clothes, intended for hooking glasses, badges, and name tags in place.

Quick coffee that tastes good

Copper Cow Vietnamese Pour Over Coffee, $8.99 at Amazon

For when they just don't have a coffee maker around, or want to skip the $6 Starbucks, Copper Cow has them covered. In four easy steps, they can make a cafe-worthy latte — all they need is hot water.

A DNA test kit for your cat

Basepaws Cat DNA Test, from $90 at Amazon and Basepaws

We've all heard of 23andMe and AncestryDNA, but have you ever heard of Basepaws? As seen on "Shark Tank," Basepaws Cat DNA Tests help unveil details about your cat, including their breed, genetic predispositions, and specific traits. After sending the sample, you'll get your results in about four to six weeks. It's a fun and informative product that makes a great gift for any cat owner.

A kit for homebrewing kombucha

The Kombucha Shop Deluxe Kombucha Brewing Kit, $74.99 at Amazon

Kombucha is essentially a fermented tea, and it's surprisingly easy to make at home. When entrepreneur Kate Field appeared on "Shark Tank" representing her business, The Kombucha Shop, she struck a deal with Barbara Corcoran and Sara Blakely.

The deluxe brewing kit comes with an organic kombucha culture and everything else your gift recipient needs to get started. Insider's Home & Kitchen reporter James Brains reviewed the product and called it a "game-changer." For anyone who enjoys the fermented drink, this kit can be a fun project that provides more customizable options than store-bought kombucha.

A car accessory that prevents items from falling in between their seat and console

Drop Stop Car Seat Gap Filler (2-pack), $24.99 at Amazon

Anyone with a car can probably relate to the frustration of dropping something in that tiny space between their seat and center console. Whether it's a smartphone or a couple of french fries, losing items in that gap is always annoying. 

This simple gap filler fits right around your giftee's seat belt to fill in that area and prevent anything from falling in there. It's a handy accessory that any car owner will appreciate.

A towel for quickly drying their leafy greens

Mirloco Salad Sling, $23.99 at Amazon

Washing lettuce and other leafy greens is important, but no one wants to eat a soggy salad. With this salad sling your giftee can avoid the hassle of using paper towels to pat their greens dry and save the counter space taken up by a traditional salad spinner.

Just place washed lettuce in the center of the microfiber cloth, grab the four corners, and swing the towel around to dry your greens. Although the product did not strike a deal on "Shark Tank," the salad sling is a solid gift choice for any recipient who regularly consumes leafy greens.

A phone charger and sanitizer that kills 99.99% of germs

PhoneSoap 3, from $49.95 at Amazon and Walmart

This handy phone device completely sanitizes your phone while also charging it. It fits most phone sizes and small accessories like headphones or smartwatches. Stay healthy and safe with this innovative design.

Wearable weights for workouts or everyday tasks

Bala Bangles, from $39.99 at Amazon and Target

One size fits all with these adjustable wrist and ankle weights that upgrade your next workout. With a set of either one pound or two, they provide additional exercise to everyday activities.

A powerful temperature controlled sponge

Scrub Daddy, from $4.59 at Amazon and Target

One of the most popular Shark Tank products is the Scrub Daddy, which is designed to fit in your hand while also offering powerful scrubbing. The sponges change from hard to soft textures depending on if you're using them in cold or hot water.

A reusable smart notebook

Rocketbook Smart Reusable Notebook, $19.97 at Amazon

If they go through notebook after notebook, this reusable option offers a long-lasting solution. Use the included pen to take any notes, then scan each page using the accompanying app to save the pages in the program of your choice.

A back support belt that improves posture

BetterBack, $59.99 at Amazon

Insider Reviews executive editor Sally Kaplan can't recommend this posture corrector enough. If your recipient suffers from back pain, this ergonomic belt provides the relief they'll need.

A cake accessory for people who love surprises

Surprise Cake Popping Cake Stand, $70.98 at Amazon

This clever product lets you hide gifts inside a cake, giving the gift an extra oomph and wow factor. As long as it fits inside the Gift Pod, which measures 2.8 inches by 6 inches, it can go in the cake.

A tool to help them reach every last drop

Spatty Daddy Last Drop Spatula (2 Piece Set), from $9.99 at Amazon and Walmart

They'll never have the guilty feeling of tossing a semi-full container again with this fun and useful two-piece set. The Spatty can be used in cosmetics, condiments, and any other container they can think of. Afterwards, it's safe to throw in the dishwasher for cleaning.

An eco-friendly alternative to paper towels

Bambooee Paper Towel Replacement (30-Sheet Roll), from $11.99 at Amazon and Walmart

If they are passionate about creating less waste, these reusable paper towels are a great alternative to their one-time use counterparts. Made of organically-sourced bamboo, these paper towels can be machine washed up to 100 times. The eco-friendly benefits don't stop there: for every Bambooee roll sold the company pledges to plant a tree.  

A memorable 3D card

Lovepop Marvel Black Panther Pop Up Card, from $12.88 at Amazon and Walmart

The cards are available in eight different "Marvel" designs, or you can visit Lovepop's Amazon page to find other types of themes. Don't worry — there's still room to write an actual message for your recipient in the included notecard. 

A funny gift box

Prank Pack Bathe & Brew Gift Box, $7.99 at Amazon

The Prank Pack isn't the actual gift, but it is a funny way to prank your recipient and trick them into thinking they're receiving a strange or gimmicky present. The co-founder is a former writer at The Onion, so expect nothing less than hilarious fake products and product descriptions that your recipient will have to pretend to enjoy. 

A travel accessory that combines a hoodie with a memory foam pillow

HoodiePillow Memory Foam Travel Pillow, $39.99 at Amazon and Walmart

The clever design of this two-in-one hoodie and memory foam pillow, which feels like their favorite fleece sweatshirt, lets them fall asleep comfortably while traveling. The hood helps block out light and noise, while the pillow provides soft neck support.

A fun outdoor game

Spikeball 3 Ball Kit, from $59.99 at Amazon and Target

On a beautiful sunny day at any park in the city, you'll probably see at least one group playing this fun and active game. With rules similar to volleyball, it's easy to learn so the whole family can get involved. Prior to the pandemic, the company even held nationwide tournaments. 

A glass that makes any wine bottle into a single serving

Guzzle Buddy 2GO Wine Glasses, from $11.69 at Amazon and Walmart

This handy tool can attach a glass to nearly any bottle of wine. It's odor-free, virtually unbreakable, and top-rack dishwasher safe. Plus, it lies at the intersection between a humorous white elephant gift and an actually useful accessory, given how the past year has panned out. 

An appliance that turns any beer into draft beer

Fizzics FZ403 DraftPour Beer Dispenser, $124.99 at Amazon and Fizzics

Using sound waves, this cool appliance turns any can or bottle of beer into fresh draft beer by turning its natural carbonation into compacted micro bubbles. All they have to do is insert their favorite beer, then pull and push the tap to receive the enhanced version of their IPA, pilsner, or stout. 

A balance bike

KaZAM No Pedal Balance Bike, $58 at Amazon and Walmart

Featuring a patented footrest design that helps young kids find their center of gravity, this bike builds the confidence needed to transition to riding a proper bike. The ergonomic, adjustable handles and seat will get kids comfortable and ready to ride right away. The bike weighs only eight pounds and the puncture-free tires never need air. 

A beach towel that gives back

Sand Cloud Turkish Towel, $43.2o on Amazon

This beautiful 100% Turkish cotton towel also works as a throw or wall tapestry. It's thin and compact, but durable. Plus, the company donates 10% of profits to help preserve marine life.

High-fidelity earplugs to protect their ears during concerts

Vibes High Fidelity Concert Earplugs, $28.95 at Amazon

If you know someone who is planning on attending a lot of loud shows, their eardrums may be facing the consequences. Wearing these comfortable earplugs can reduce noise levels by up to 22 decibels, but they don't cancel out noise completely. Instead, they only filter out certain frequencies, so your recipient will still be able to enjoy the crisp vocals and instrumentation of their favorite band.

The famous 'Comfy' sweatshirt that they'll never want to take off

The Comfy Sweatshirt, from $49.99 at Amazon and Target

You can practically feel the comfortable softness and warmth of this oversized blanket sweater just by looking at it. Cozy up in The Comfy by the fireplace, at sports games, or while watching rom-coms. 

Adorable leather moccasins

Freshly Picked Kids' Soft Sole Moccasins (Newborn Baby), $59 at Amazon

The creator of the cutest little baby shoes you've ever seen got her start picking up yard sale leather scraps and selling on Etsy. Today, parents everywhere are obsessed with the unique and comfortable 100% leather designs that infuse style into their baby's every step. 

A better protein mixing bottle

Ice Shaker 26-Ounce Stainless Steel Protein Mixing Cup, from $31.49 at Amazon and Dick's Sporting Goods

The problem with traditional plastic protein powder shakers is that they tend to absorb odor and won't keep the contents cold. Former NFL player Chris Gronkowski's stainless steel water bottle is double-insulated, spill-proof, and odor-free — the upgrade that fitness enthusiasts deserve.

A funny card game that tests the financial limits of various outrageous scenarios

Pricetitution Card Game, $19.99 at Amazon

Every card begins with the prompt, "How much money would it take me..." followed by a funny situation. It was a big success on both "Shark Tank," with four Sharks giving offers, and on Kickstarter. 

A smart video doorbell

Ring Video Doorbell Pro, from $169 at Amazon and Lowe's

Ring may not have secured a deal with the Sharks, but it did strike up a deal with Amazon for over $1 billion in 2018, so it's doing just fine. The smart security system has two-way talk, sends motion-activated alerts, and works with Alexa, giving homeowners the peace of mind that their house will be safe, regardless of whether or not they're home. 

A temperature-regulating machine that goes under their bed

BedJet 3 Climate Comfort for Beds, from $379 at Amazon and BedJet

As an engineer who developed the heating and cooling systems of NASA spacesuits, the creator of BedJet has the perfect background to improve the sleep experience. Since temperature often impedes a good night's sleep, the BedJet blows hot or cold air onto the bed and over their body and creates "biorhythm sleep sequences" throughout the night. 

A drink accessory that keeps their beer cold

BottleKeeper The Standard 2.0, $34.99 at Amazon

Is there anything more frustrating to an avid beer drinker than a cold one that's less than cold in just half an hour? The insulated stainless steel BottleKeeper, complete with bottle opener, keeps their beer colder for a longer period of time. It's also a smart way to protect against drops and spills. 

A rapid ramen cooker

Rapid Ramen Cooker, from $6.98 at Amazon and Walmart

What seems like a gag gift has actually come in handy for many busy students, parents, and office workers because it takes away the need for a stove and dish-washing session, cooks the noodles more quickly, and requires less water. It's the perfect size for a block of ramen and a faster, more reliable alternative to stovetop cooking. 

Read the original article on Business Insider

Elon Musk argued with reporters on Twitter Spaces about suspending multiple high-profile journalists' accounts — hear the full exchange, including the moment he abruptly left

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:41pm
Elon Musk.
  • On Thursday, Twitter suspended the accounts of multiple high-profile journalists who cover owner Elon Musk.
  • Elon Musk later dropped into Twitter Spaces, where reporters asked why the accounts were suspended. He spoke a few times before abruptly leaving.
  • Listen to the full exchange below.

Twitter suspended the accounts of several high-profile journalists late Thursday, and a Twitter Spaces discussion on the matter, featuring Elon Musk himself, followed shortly after.

Multiple reporters, many of whom cover tech, including Musk and Twitter, saw their Twitter accounts suspended without warning or explanation on Thursday. They include Ryan Mac of The New York Times, Donie O'Sullivan of CNN, Drew Harwell of The Washington Post, Matt Binder of Mashable, Micah Flee of The Intercept, Steve Herman of Voice of America, and independent journalists Aaron Rupar, Keith Olbermann, and Tony Webster.

Several of them had recently tweeted about the @ElonJet Twitter account, which is run by college student Jack Sweeney and tracks flights by Musk's private jet using public flight data available online. Twitter suspended that account on Wednesday despite Musk, who has called himself a free-speech absolutist, tweeting in November that he wouldn't do so.

Musk said on Wednesday, "Any account doxxing real-time location info of anyone will be suspended, as it is a physical safety violation. This includes posting links to sites with real-time location info."

Despite the suspensions, the reporters were still able to use Twitter Spaces. Several of the reporters, along with Jack Sweeney of the @ElonJet account, gathered in a Spaces call hosted by BuzzFeed News tech reporter Katie Notopoulos to discuss the suspensions, and Musk himself briefly joined the call. When pressed for answers about the suspensions, Musk repeatedly said, "You dox, you get suspended." He abruptly left later.

Twitter Spaces later stopped working, which Musk says happened to fix a "legacy bug," but several Twitter users recorded the exchange between Musk and the reporters. You can watch it here:

—Bradley Eversley (@ForeverEversley) December 16, 2022

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Charging an electric car isn't as simple as pumping gas. Here's what to know.

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:20pm
An electric vehicle connected to a charger in Sweden in 2019.
  • There are three main types of EV chargers.
  • Any electric vehicle can use multiple charger types.
  • Tesla's proprietary plugs exclude other cars from its branded Superchargers.

Before buying an electric vehicle, the first thing you'll want to know is how to charge up.

There are two main things to know about EV charging: charger types and connector types. Any electric vehicle, Tesla or otherwise, can use all three types of chargers. 

However, Teslas are equipped with a proprietary connector that excludes other types of EVs from using the company's vast Supercharger network

Among connectors or plugs, there are two categories: AC and DC, short for alternating or direct current. Type 1 and Type 2 AC plugs are standard on EVs from America and Asia and deliver charge speeds between 7.4 and 43 kilowatts, depending on the charger you're plugged into. At these speeds, a full charge would typically take several hours. 

For a faster charge, you'll want to look for DC plugs. Of those, there are two standard types, plus Tesla's. One type of DC is essentially an enhanced type of AC charger with two additional prongs to support faster charging. The other type, CHAdeMO, has fewer prongs, provides a faster charge, and supports bidirectional charging.

Once you have identified your plug type, there are three different types of chargers providing various levels of speed.

Level 1 

Most electric vehicles are sold with a Level 1 charger equipped. It can look similar to an outdoor extension cord in size and length.

While this is likely the most convenient charging option for a new EV buyer – it's compatible with a standard 120-Volt wall outlet – this is the slowest way to charge. It's best when your car will be plugged in for a long period, like overnight or during the weekend.

Level 2 

A Level 2 charger can often be found in public areas, like parking garages, restaurants, and grocery store parking lots. These slightly faster chargers – averaging about 25 miles of range per hour – can also be installed in your home. 

Level 2 chargers can be either hardwired or plugged into an existing 240-volt outlet, the same type of outlet used to plug in your home dryer. These are great for overnight charging, as they can usually deliver a full charge in 8 to 10 hours.

DC Fast Charger

These are the best chargers for long trips, as they can provide the most juice in the shortest amount of time.

Depending on the size of your battery, a DC fast charger can replenish an empty battery to about 80% in a half hour. Tesla's Superchargers, which only work on Tesla vehicles because of the proprietary connector, are DC fast chargers. But non-Teslas can also plug into a DC fast charger that is not owned by Tesla.

How to find public charging stations

Many EVs now have software built in that can help you locate the nearest charger, and apps like Plugshare and ChargeHub are helpful tools for finding the closest compatible charger in a pinch. 

Tesla is the only EV maker with a dedicated charging network, which has been a big draw for buyers. Other car companies have relied more on partnerships to build out charging infrastructure, which has made the proliferation of much-needed plugs for non-Tesla drivers a much slower process.

General Motors, for example, is just getting started on its Ultium Charge 360 charging network in North America – a joint effort with its dealer network and charging startup FLO.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Sam Bankman-Fried's FTX wants to sell some of its last remaining solvent businesses as its restructuring process picks up

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:18pm
  • FTX wants to sell some of its last functioning business units, according to a court filing. 
  • One of which is US derivatives platform LedgerX, which is considered one of FTX's most valuable assets.
  • FTX's new CEO John Ray described the crumbled exchange as having "a complete failure of corporate controls."

FTX wants to put some of the last solvent pieces of Sam Bankman-Fried's once-$32 billion crypto empire up for sale. 

The embattled company has petitioned a federal court for permission to sell several of its subsidiaries, including US derivatives platform LedgerX, as the troubled firm's restructuring process picks up.

Company attorneys say it's a "priority" for FTX to "explore sales" and "strategic transactions" of some of its remaining businesses, according to a court filing on Thursday. Other functional units include Embed Business, FTX Japan, and FTX Europe.

"Based on their preliminary review, the Debtors own or control a number of subsidiaries and assets that are regulated, licensed and/or largely not integrated into the Debtors' operations, within and outside of the United States," according to a document filed to the Bankruptcy Court of Delaware. 

The filing continued: "The Debtors believe a number of these entities have solvent balance sheets, independent management and valuable franchises."

LedgerX, which is registered with the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission, is now considered one of Bankman-Fried's most valuable assets after FTX and nearly 130 other associated entities filed for bankruptcy protection last month.

The US derivatives platform is attracting buyer interest from industry heavyweights like the Winklevoss twins' exchange Gemini and crypto services platform Blockchain.com, Bloomberg reported on December 2, citing people familiar with the matter. Gemini and Blockchain.com did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment on the matter.

FTX wants to sell these businesses fast, according to the court document, which indicated that some of the entities have had their operating licenses suspended following FTX's collapse.

"The Debtors and/or the Businesses have been in active conversations with a number of regulators for the Businesses," the filing said, adding that the licenses held by FTX Europe have been suspended and that FTX Japan are subject to the same as well.

"The longer operations are suspended, the greater the risk to the value of the assets and the risk of a permanent revocation of licenses," the filing said.

FTX has received dozens of "unsolicited inbound inquiries" for the businesses, per the filing. No final decisions have been made to sell any of FTX's associated entities until the approval of both the court and independent directors of the debtors.

"A sound business purpose for the sale of a debtor's assets outside the ordinary course of business exists where such sale is necessary to maximize and preserve the value of the estate for the benefit of creditors and interest holders," the filing reads.

FTX's new CEO John Ray said it could take months to secure the collapsed exchange's assets in a congressional testimony earlier this week.

"I've just never seen an utter lack of record keeping. Absolutely no internal controls whatsoever," said Ray, who took over as Enron's chairman when the defunct energy giant restructured in the early 2000s.

Elsewhere, Bankman-Fried was arrested in the Bahamas on Monday night. US prosecutors are accusing the disgraced founder of a years-long scheme to defraud investors, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission complaint on Tuesday. 

"We allege that Sam Bankman-Fried built a house of cards on a foundation of deception while telling investors that it was one of the safest buildings in crypto," SEC Chair Gary Gensler said in a statement.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Charging an electric car isn't as simple as pumping gas. Here's what to know.

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:16pm
An electric vehicle connected to a charger in Sweden in 2019.
  • There are three main types of EV chargers.
  • Any electric vehicle can use multiple charger types.
  • Tesla's proprietary plugs exclude other cars from its branded Superchargers.

Before buying an electric vehicle, the first thing you'll want to know is how to charge up.

There are two main things to know about EV charging: charger types and connector types. Any electric vehicle, Tesla or otherwise, can use all three types of chargers. 

However, Teslas are equipped with a proprietary connector that excludes other types of EVs from using the company's vast Supercharger network

Among connectors or plugs, there are two categories: AC and DC, short for alternating or direct current. Type 1 and Type 2 AC plugs are standard on EVs from America and Asia and deliver charge speeds between 7.4 and 43 kilowatts, depending on the charger you're plugged into. At these speeds, a full charge would typically take several hours. 

For a faster charge, you'll want to look for DC plugs. Of those, there are two standard types, plus Tesla's. One type of DC is essentially an enhanced type of AC charger with two additional prongs to support faster charging. The other type, CHAdeMO, has fewer prongs, provides a faster charge, and supports bidirectional charging.

Once you have identified your plug type, there are three different types of chargers providing various levels of speed.

Level 1 

Most electric vehicles are sold with a Level 1 charger equipped. It can look similar to an outdoor extension cord in size and length.

While this is likely the most convenient charging option for a new EV buyer – it's compatible with a standard 120-Volt wall outlet – this is the slowest way to charge. It's best when your car will be plugged in for a long period, like overnight or during the weekend.

Level 2 

A Level 2 charger can often be found in public areas, like parking garages, restaurants, and grocery store parking lots. These slightly faster chargers – averaging about 25 miles of range per hour – can also be installed in your home. 

Level 2 chargers can be either hardwired or plugged into an existing 240-volt outlet, the same type of outlet used to plug in your home dryer. These are great for overnight charging, as they can usually deliver a full charge in 8 to 10 hours.

DC Fast Charger

These are the best chargers for long trips, as they can provide the most juice in the shortest amount of time.

Depending on the size of your battery, a DC fast charger can replenish an empty battery to about 80% in a half hour. Tesla's Superchargers, which only work on Tesla vehicles because of the proprietary connector, are DC fast chargers. But non-Teslas can also plug into a DC fast charger that is not owned by Tesla.

How to find public charging stations

Many EVs now have software built in that can help you locate the nearest charger, and apps like Plugshare and ChargeHub are helpful tools for finding the closest compatible charger in a pinch. 

Tesla is the only EV maker with a dedicated charging network, which has been a big draw for buyers. Other car companies have relied more on partnerships to build out charging infrastructure, which has made the proliferation of much-needed plugs for non-Tesla drivers a much slower process.

General Motors, for example, is just getting started on its Ultium Charge 360 charging network in North America – a joint effort with its dealer network and charging startup FLO.

Read the original article on Business Insider

The only victim in Elon's beef with journalists is Twitter

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:11pm
Elon Musk
  • Elon Musk is upping the ante in his battle with the media, but his beef could kill off the platform.
  • Twitter itself knows news and journalists are major drivers of user engagement on its platform.
  • Permanently barring even a small group of media risks having a chilling effect and scaring off advertisers.

Elon Musk's war against the media continues.

Twitter on Thursday suspended the accounts of several journalists such as New York Times reporter Ryan Mac and CNN's Donie O'Sullivan, possibly permanently, concluding that they had violated a new rule on doxxing.

The new policy, as Musk explained it, bars users from sharing real-time information on a person's whereabouts. It coincides with Twitter suspending @ElonJet, an account that tweets out the location of Musk's private jet based on publicly available flight data. The journalists' only misstep seems to have been linking to this tracker — but both Mac and O'Sullivan said they hadn't been given a reason for their bans.

The clampdown on media has alarmed peer journalists, press freedom groups, and regulators. Ryan Mac's employer, the New York Times, described the suspensions as "questionable and unfortunate." CNN said it has "asked Twitter for an explanation" for Donie O'Sullivan's ban and will reevaluate its relationship with the social media company depending on the response it gets. 

—Index on Censorship (@IndexCensorship) December 16, 2022

 

Press freedom concerns aside, the move makes little business sense. By barring journalists, Musk is openly demonstrating his resentment towards one of Twitter's most active and important userbases, hurting the platform further.

Journalists depend on Twitter, and Twitter depends on them too

By Twitter's own estimates, journalists count for a lot on its platform.

Around 85% of users turn to Twitter to watch, read, or listen to the news once a day, while 83% of people tweet about the news, according to research the company conducted in the US with YouGov and Sparkler between December 2021 and May 2022.

The relationship between reporters and users is symbiotic, it found. Users "regularly follow news-related Twitter accounts, and around 4 in 5 young journalists rely on the platform for their jobs.

Journalists use Twitter more than any other social media platform, according to research from Pew in June, treating it as a real-time source of information. It offers vital resources for reporters to chase the stories that matter.

The advantage for Twitter is that it gets a bunch of content from professional reporters for free and, at its best, becomes easily more powerful than any single TV channel or publication. But Twitter is less important to news organizations, which gain more readers from Google and Facebook. Twitter needs the news, but the news doesn't always need Twitter.

Musk has repeatedly shown he misunderstands the importance of journalists to the company and how the news media treats public figures such as himself.

Defending the bans, he contended that if anyone posted the real-time locations and addresses of reporters, the "FBI would be investigating" and that Joe Biden would "give speeches about end of democracy." 

Musk has himself revealed his own PO box on Twitter before (albeit accidentally) in a tweet showing a letter he received from a Stanford professor

—Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 16, 2022

 

Confusingly, he has also previously suggested that he does, in fact, want Twitter to be a place of real-time news.

Bans on reporters will exacerbate what is already a bad development for Twitter: The company is losing its most active users, it told staff in an internal report in October seen by Reuters. Heavy tweeters, accounting for around 10% of Twitter's user base but 90% of all tweets, account for half of Twitter's global revenue, according to the report. It's tough to attract advertisers if you're driving away your own content creators.

Advertisers are also likely to feel jittery if more journalists are thrown off the service. Advertisers want a healthy, active platform to capture attention. A gutted, inconsistently moderated service dominated by one individual is a less attractive proposition. 

Less than a month into Musk's reign, Twitter was forced to reduce its ad revenue projection for the final quarter of the year from $1.4 billion to $1.1 billion as advertisers had already vastly reduced its spending on the platform, according to The New York Times.

Musk's inconsistent stance on free speech will bite him

Musk is adamant that he is a "free speech absolutist", but his decisions this past week throw that stance into question.

Věra Jourová, the EU Commission's vice president for values and transparency, tweeted on Friday that arbitrarily suspending journalists "is reinforced under our #MediaFreedomAct. @elonmusk should be aware of that. There are red lines. And sanctions, soon."

—Taylor Lorenz (@TaylorLorenz) December 16, 2022

 

Several other prominent journalists have spent the past weeks tweeting about where followers can find their work, posting links to their profiles on alternative apps such as Substack, Post News, and Mastodon, alarmed by the apparently random suspensions of peers.

Despite his best efforts, Musk can't force consensus hatred against the media.

In a poll, Musk asked users if he should "unsuspend accounts who doxxed my exact location in real-time." A rough majority of 60% of respondents say he should unsuspend the accounts now.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Twitter took its Spaces audio feature offline after suspended journalists found they still had access and confronted Elon Musk about their removals

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:11pm
Elon Musk looks down during a speech.
  • Twitter Spaces was taken offline after suspended journalists were still able to access it.
  • Elon Musk joined one of the conversations and was confronted by journalists about the suspensions.
  • After Spaces stopped working, Musk tweeted that Twitter is "fixing a Legacy bug," and it should return Friday.

Twitter took its Spaces feature offline after Elon Musk joined one and was confronted by suspended journalists, who still were able to access the feature, about their removal from the platform.

Musk abruptly left the Space hosted by Buzzfeed News tech reporter, Katie Notopoulos, and afterwards, Notopoulos tweeted that the Space was shut down.

A little after 2 a.m. Eastern, actor Sir Maejor, tweeted at Musk, asking what happened with Twitter Spaces.

"It's glitching and won't allow ppl in rooms," Maejor tweeted. 

Musk replied that Twitter is "fixing a Legacy bug. Should be working tomorrow."

—Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 16, 2022

 

The feature was not back on Twitter as of early Friday morning.

Twitter suspended more than six journalists from the platform on Thursday, all of whom report on Musk regularly. The journalists, including Drew Harwell and Ryan Mac, are from prominent news outlets like The Washington Post, The New York Times, and CNN. Independent journalists including Aaron Rupar and Keith Olbermann were also suspended.

Rupar told Insider he didn't know why he was suspended, and has no information from Twitter about what rule he violated.

But some of the suspended accounts, including Harwell and Jack Sweeney, the college student who runs @ElonJet that tracks Musk's private jet, found they were able to take part in Notopoulos's Twitter Space despite their suspension.

During his appearance in the Space, Musk said "everyone's going to be treated the same, you're not special cause you're a journalist."

"You dox, you get suspended. End of story," Musk said.

He also said "ban evasion" by posting a link to real-time information "is obviously simply trying to evade the meaning." He said it was "no different" than showing the information. 

Notopoulos pointed out that Harwell and Mac were reporting on links from @ElonJet showing Musk's location, but Musk said it was still ban evasion, "obviously." Harwell followed up with Musk, saying Twitter is using the same link-blocking technique that Musk criticized when The New York Post's story about Hunter Biden came out in 2020, by blocking links to @ElonJet, and marking the account's Instagram and Mastodon as "harmful." 

Musk repeated that users who dox will get suspended, then left the Space.

After the Space was shut down, Notopoulos tweeted that the recording of it was "strangely not available."

Read the original article on Business Insider

Trump asks for — and receives — a 45-day extension for disclosing his personal finances

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:06pm
Former President Donald Trump speaks during the America First Agenda Summit, at the Marriott Marquis hotel July 26, 2022 in Washington, DC.
  • Trump delayed the release of a personal financial disclosure required by law for presidential candidates.
  • Trump may now wait another 45 days before releasing new details about his personal finances.
  • The former president could also request one more 45-day extension.

Former President Donald Trump has requested — and received — a 45-day extension on filing a mandatory personal financial disclosure that would offer new details about his wealth now that he's again a presidential candidate.

"Due to the complexity of his finances and the need to obtain additional information from third parties, President Trump needs additional time to gather the necessary information and complete the report," Compass Legal Group senior counsel Derek H. Ross wrote to the Federal Election Commission on Thursday.

"I have granted your request for a 45-day extension of time until January 29, 2023," FEC Acting General Counsel Lisa Stevenson replied on Friday.

Trump announced his 2024 presidential run last month amid a swirl of legal peril. Federal law requires new presidential candidates to submit a certified personal financial disclosure within 30 days of becoming a candidate, but they may request up to two, 45-day extensions from federal regulators.

A letter from Donald Trump's lawyer to the Federal Election Commission.A letter from the Federal Election Commission to an attorney for Donald Trump.

Presidential personal financial disclosures include information about a candidate's income, assets, debt, and royalties.

Trump's disclosures as the nation's 45th president were particularly intriguing given his sprawling business interests that frequently intersected — and conflicted — with his public duties. Earlier this month, a trial jury in New York City found the Trump Organization guilty on all counts of tax fraud. 

Personal financial disclosures of this sort are different from personal tax returns and, generally, contain fewer details.

Trump for years has refused to publicly release his tax returns, breaking with presidential precedent. But after a years-long legal battle, the Democrat-controlled US House is now in possession of those records and could potentially release them before Republicans assume power in January.

Read the original article on Business Insider

I charge up to $80 an hour on Taskrabbit for holiday tasks like gift wrapping and decorating. This season brings more jobs, new gigs, and better tips.

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 11:43am
Vanessa Garcia.
  • Vanessa Garcia works as a Tasker on Taskrabbit doing a variety of services for clients in LA.
  • Her hourly rate goes up to $80 an hour for holiday tasks like gift wrapping and party planning.
  • She says having a positive attitude is key to keeping clients happy and earning tips.

This as-told-to essay is based on a conversation with Vanessa Garcia, a 29-year-old Tasker for Taskrabbit who lives in the Los Angeles area, about her job. Insider has verified her business' revenue with documentation. The following has been edited for length and clarity.

I'm a full-time Tasker, and I currently offer 25 different skills on the app. These include personal-assistant work, project coordination/management, organization, furniture assembly, event staffing, and entertainment.

In 2017, a friend told me about Taskrabbit and I decided to try it. I thought it was amazing that you could get paid to put together Ikea furniture. Once I signed up for Taskrabbit, I found out you could do a lot more. Tasking eventually went from a weekend gig to my full-time revenue stream.

The holidays bring a variety of more work

There tends to be more events around the holidays, which means plenty of gift wrapping and decoration. The comparison between my earnings in the months of November and December and the months in the middle of the summer comes down to the amount of work that I personally do. Because it's the holidays, sometimes I'm out of town, and that affects my earnings.

I generally don't work on actual holiday dates, however, if I were to work on New Year's Eve or Thanksgiving, I'd most definitely up-charge, and I'd notify my clients in advance that the rate is a holiday rate. Besides the actual holiday "day," I generally don't raise my rates during the holiday season. l don't lower my rates for the holidays either to attract more clients.

Clients during the holidays are definitely carrying more stress, as they want their families to have a great time during events, or simply because they want to get their houses organized before their guests visit.

In past holiday seasons, I've been hired to host 4th of July barbecues, Thanksgiving dinner, and plenty of holiday parties

I've heard from other Taskers that they've been hired to install lights during the holidays. Most of the time, clients want me to help with preparing meals, keeping things tidy, and making sure they're able to enjoy the event instead of having to worry about catering to their guests.

When planning holiday parties, I always ask for the number of guests. They tend to be very intimate — just family or a small friends gathering. Most of the events that I've had to plan have been for up to 30 people. It's incredibly fun and very rewarding because you get to plan all the details, from the decor to the food.

I work hand in hand with my clients to make sure that everything is to their liking. I would say the only downside is that it's demanding because everything needs to come together at the same time for the client, but I'm sure that any event planner can attest to this.

Gift-wrapping and decorating tasks are pretty self-explanatory

How I wrap a present varies depending on the clients' desired wrapping, ribbons, bows, and bags. I once had a client hire me to wrap 50 hardcover books and pack them in their own box along with a unique holiday card and then ship them. For the book wrapping, I made $216.75 at $51 per hour for four hours and 15 minutes.

In terms of decorating, most of the time all the decor is already where the event will take place, and I just have to set it up, make sure everything is where it needs to be, and make it look beautiful. One client hired me for holiday decorating through a packing and unpacking gig. He was moving, and once he moved, he wanted me to unpack all the holiday decor and decorate his home with what he had. He also asked me to put up the Christmas tree. The total of this packing and unpacking came to $408 without tip, and I worked for eight hours, again at $51 an hour. This client tipped me around $80.

In 2021, I increased my rate

I raised it from $45 to $60 per hour to $55 to $80 per hour, and I was still constantly getting hired at my higher rates. I started on the app earning about $18 per hour, and now I average $75 per hour. My organization and interior-design tasks have given me the most earnings.

From the summer of 2021 to the holiday season of 2021, I gradually increased my pricing by 10% to test the waters to see if I would keep on getting hired for that price. Eventually, I kept my higher rate as I kept getting hired.

I've gotten tipped more than $100 over the holidays for organization, furniture assembly, and present-wrapping tasks. I'd say overall, even with clients being a little more stressed, they're nicer, and as long as you're professional and great work is done, the client is most thankful for it.

During the winter holidays, the biggest thing is to keep your list of skills broad on the app

I like to go on the app and see what other tasks I can add that I might not have seen before. The more variety of work you offer, the more chances you have of getting hired.

Be aware that there could be some scams when it comes to shopping, and steer clear of things that could be platform abusers trying to scam you. Never buy gift cards for clients, always make sure you ask Taskrabbit Support if there are funds for the purchase required, and always keep receipts.

As cliché as it sounds, being positive makes tasks flow better. Also, don't be afraid to raise your rates. If you're offering quality services, then clients will hire you at a higher rate.

A Taskrabbit spokesperson told Insider: "Taskrabbit's top priority is the safety of all users, including Taskers and clients. We don't allow tasks involving the online purchase of goods for in-store pick-up, cash withdrawal, cryptocurrency, or gift cards for security reasons. We also ask Taskers to please contact our Support Team before making any large purchases on behalf of a client."

Read the original article on Business Insider

How to remove background noise from your recordings using Audacity

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 11:35am
Audacity has tools for filtering out background noise.
  • You can remove background noise in Audacity with the "Noise Reduction" tool.
  • Use Audacity's Noise Reduction tool on a small piece of your audio first, and then expand the range.
  • No tool for removing background noise is perfect, including Audacity's, so expect some audio distortion.

If you've ever recorded a podcast, music, or a speech, you've probably had to deal with background noise. Unless you've got a professional setup, it's hard to avoid an annoying hum or hiss in the background.

Luckily, most audio editing programs include tools to get rid of that background noise. And although none of them are perfect — you should either expect some noise to remain, or for your audio to become distorted — they can help delete distracting sounds.

Here's how to use the background noise removal tools in Audacity, one of the most popular audio editing apps.

How to remove background noise in Audacity

To filter out background noise, we're going to use Audacity's Noise Reduction tool.

1. Open up your audio file in Audacity.

2. Try to find a spot in the audio where there's only background noise. The longer that moment is, the better. If you can't find any moments with only background noise, try to find the spot where it's most prominent.

3. Highlight that moment by dragging your mouse over it.

4. At the top of the screen, click Effect, then Noise Removal and Repair, and finally Noise Reduction.

Select a spot with background noise first.

5. Click Get Noise Profile. Audacity will analyze the selected moment to figure out what the background noise sounds like.

6. Once it's done, close this menu and select your entire audio file. You can do this quickly by pressing Ctrl + A on a PC, or Command + A on a Mac.

7. Open the Noise Reduction menu again (Effect > Noise Removal and Repair > Noise Reduction), and then click OK.

Try removing the audio without changing the settings first.

Audacity will use the noise profile it created before to remove all the matching background noise from your file. If you don't like the finished product, just undo it (press Ctrl + Z or Command + Z).

Quick tip: If your audio file has a variety of unwanted background noises that each sound different, you'll likely need to analyze and reduce each type of noise individually, not the entire file at once.

What to do if there's still background noise

In the steps above, we used the Noise Reduction tool's default settings. But when you opened the menu, you probably noticed that it includes a few different sliders.

If you don't like what your audio file sounds like using the default settings, then try adjusting these sliders.

The Noise reduction (dB) slider adjusts how heavily Audacity will try to mute the background noise. You want to keep this slider as low as you can while still erasing the background noise — if it's too high, you'll start muting the audio you want too.

The Sensitivity slider adjusts how much of the audio Audacity will treat as background noise and try to remove. Again, set this as low as you can while still erasing the noise.

The Frequency Smoothing (bands) slider adjusts how many frequency bands Audacity will try to reduce noise in. The default setting for this is 3, but the official Audacity manual suggests setting this lower if you're editing music, and higher if you're editing human speech.

Finally, there are two options you have to choose between: Reduce and Residue

Reduce is the default, and is the option that lets Audacity remove background noise. 

Residue does the opposite, removing everything that's not background noise. This is good for identifying what Audacity considers noise and is trying to delete.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Shark Tank investor Kevin O'Leary hits back against Binance CEO calling him a 'liar'

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 11:17am
  • Shark Tank's Kevin O'Leary said Changpeng Zhao was wrong to call him a "liar" in a recent interview to CNBC.
  • The Binance CEO previously deflected O'Leary's claims that Binance intentionally put FTX out of business, calling them "nonsense."
  • But O'Leary says he didn't perjure himself in front of Senate and doubled down on his claims.

Shark Tank's Kevin O'Leary hit back against Changpeng Zhao calling him a "liar," referring to a recent interview where the Binance CEO called O'Leary's claims at a Senate hearing this week "nonsense."

O'Leary testified in front of the Senate Banking Committee on the fallout of FTX, the now-defunct crypto exchange for which O'Leary was a paid spokesperson. While its bankruptcy has shed light on numerous accounting scandals, O'Leary suggested that the downfall of the exchange was spurred by Binance selling its 20% stake in the firm back to Sam Bankman-Fried in late 2021.

That blew a major hole in FTX's balance sheet, and was the starting force that caused the troubled crypto exchange to go under, O'Leary alleged.

Binance's CZ disputed those claims in an interview with CNBC on Thursday, adding that O'Leary's claims "don't make sense." He also noted that O'Leary was speaking to Sam Bankman-Fried up to the point of his arrest on Tuesday, which suggests the two had a "special relationship," CZ said.

"Yesterday on the air, CZ called me a liar. That suggests I perjured myself in front of the US Senate for two hours this week. I can assure you that's not the case," O'Leary said to CNBC on Friday. 

O'Leary, who said he lost $10 million amid FTX's implosion, doubled down on his claims Binance wouldn't provide data that would clear FTX for a license and force Bankman-Fried to buy out its stake, in order for Binance to take down one of its largest competitors. 

"You ask anybody why was Sam Bankman-Fried or the whole company FTX forced into bankruptcy? It was jamming down that last half a billion that gave them no option," O'Leary said, referring to Binance's stake. "Now is that the fatal stroke or blow to get rid of your global competitor? I say yes."

The rival crypto exchange has been under mounting scrutiny as FTX sorts out its finances, as FTX sought out an acquisition from Binance last month before declaring bankruptcy. US prosecutors have been investigating Binance for money laundering and other criminal activity, and the exchange briefly froze withdrawals as customers raced to pull out their money, though CZ assured investors customer deposits are fully backed.

O'Leary speculated regulators start looking at Binance as they continue probing FTX, adding he received a text from a lobbyist in Washington asking him to stay in the area.

"So I bet CZ bought himself an invitation to Washington yesterday. Can't wait to meet him there. We can go sightseeing," O'Leary said.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Goldman Sachs to lay off up to 8% of its workforce

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 11:16am
  • Goldman Sachs plans to lay off up to 8% of its employees. 
  • CEO David Solomon previously said the firm is seeing "headwinds on our expense lines."
  • The layoffs show the impact on Wall Street of broader economic forces. 

Goldman Sachs is set to lay off up to 8% of its staff — and the hammer could come down as soon as January, a person familiar with the cuts told Insider.

There's still no final decision yet on the total number of people to be laid off, as discussions are ongoing, according to the person.

The layoffs at Goldman were previously reported by Semafor, which reported that some 4,000 employees could be laid off, marking more potential losses than at other banking firms. Goldman's headcount was 49,100 as of September.

The move by the investment banking giant is the latest sign of trouble on Wall Street after a historic surge of deal activity last year gave way to a downturn in 2022 amid persistent supply chain issues and inflation. Goldman Sachs has also been hit by losses to its burgeoning consumer banking division.

Goldman has struggled with criticisms of its consumer banking business, resulting in a restructuring earlier this year that signaled a major retreat of its ambitions for that unit.

This month, Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon suggested that tough decisions could be ahead, saying at the firm's financial services conference that the firm wasn't immune to economic forces. 

"We continue to see headwinds on our expense lines, particularly in the near term," Solomon said at the conference last week. "We've set in motion certain expense mitigation plans, but it will take some time to realize the benefits. Ultimately, we will remain nimble and we will size the firm to reflect the opportunity set."

Goldman Sachs previously laid off a number of bankers and others across departments including its tech, health care and media teams, Insider previously reported in September. 

Read the original article on Business Insider

How to delete Google Drive's cache and reclaim wasted storage space

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 11:06am
Google Drive's cache holds data for documents you've opened recently.
  • You can delete your Google Drive cache on a computer by clearing your browser history.
  • On an Android, you can clear Google Drive's cache through the app's Settings menu.
  • iPhone and iPad users can only clear Google Drive's cache by deleting and reinstalling the app.

Like most apps and websites, Google Drive has a cache of data it uses to quickly load information you've accessed recently. And if you use Google Drive a lot, that cache can balloon in size until it starts hogging storage space.

But no matter how you use Google Drive, you can clear its cache in just a few moments. Here's how to do it.

How to delete Google Drive's cache on a Mac or PC

If you're using the Google Drive website on your Mac or PC, the only way to clear the website's cache is to clear your internet browser's browsing data.

Few (if any) browsers let you clear the cache for only one specific site. However, most will let you clear your browser cache without deleting your entire browsing history.

In Google Chrome, click the stacked three dots in the top-right corner of your browser, then hover your mouse over More tools. Select Clear browsing data. In the menu that opens, set the time range to All time, and check the box labeled Cached images and files. Then click Clear data.

You can clear the cache without clearing other data.

In Microsoft Edge, click the three dots in the top-right corner, and then History. In the pop-up that appears, click the three dots in the top-right corner, then select Clear browsing data. Set the time range to All time, check the box labeled Cached images and files, then click Clear now.

In Firefox, click the three stacked lines in the top-right corner, and then History. Select Clear recent history. Set the time range to Everything, make sure the Cache option is checked, and then click OK

Once you do this, you might have to sign back into Google Drive.

How to delete Google Drive's cache on an Android

The Google Drive Android app has a built-in feature that lets you clear the cache at any time.

1. Open Google Drive and log into any of your accounts.

2. Tap the stacked three lines in the top-left corner of the screen, then select Settings.

3. Scroll down and tap Clear cache, then confirm that you want to clear it.

You can also tap the Cache size option to put a limit on how big the cache can be.

Google Drive’s Android app has its own cache options.How to delete Google Drive's cache on an iPhone or iPad

The only way to clear most app caches on an iPhone or iPad is to delete the app and reinstall it. Google Drive is no different.

Tap and hold your finger on the Google Drive app icon and select Remove App when it appears. Tap Delete App, and then Delete again.

Delete Google Drive.

You can then reinstall Google Drive for free from the App Store. You'll have to log back into your Google accounts.

Read the original article on Business Insider

'Kenan & Kel' actor Kel Mitchell on the upcoming 'Good Burger' sequel, mentoring new child stars as 'Uncle Kel,' and the controversial producer Dan Schneider

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 11:00am
Kel Mitchell is best known for his roles in Nickelodeon productions like "All That," "Kenan and Kel," and "Good Burger."
  • Nickelodeon legend Kel Mitchell spoke to Insider this week about his career and the upcoming sequel to "Good Burger."
  • Mitchell told us that he's excited to step back into his iconic roles, and sees himself as an "Uncle" to new child stars trying to make it in the industry.
  • He also spoke about his working relationship with Dan Schneider, the ex-Nickelodeon producer who's faced accusations of bullying and misconduct with young actors.

It's not an exaggeration to say that for many "90s Kids," Kel Mitchell is the face of their childhood.

The Chicago-born actor got his start on the sketch comedy show "All That," before gaining worldwide fame as co-star of the iconic Nickelodeon sitcom "Kenan & Kel," alongside the future "Saturday Night Live" legend Kenan Thompson. The two also co-starred in "Good Burger," a 1997 comedy film that's become a cult classic among millennials and Gen Zers.

Since "Kenan & Kel" ended, Mitchell has split his time between voice acting for cartoons, making one-off cameo appearances on various TV shows, and eventually returning to the world of Nickelodeon sitcoms with a starring role on "Game Shakers." He's also become a youth pastor, and partnered with charities like World Vision as a "celebrity ambassador." He's kept himself busy, yet largely out of the mainstream spotlight.

But following a recent appearance on "Saturday Night Live" where he revived (and then promptly killed) his classic Kel Kimble character, and the confirmation that him and Thompson are working on a "Good Burger" sequel, Mitchell wants to remind the world that his acting and comedic skills haven't dulled.

This week, Mitchell spoke to Insider about his work off-camera, the upcoming "Good Burger 2," and the advice he gives new child stars. We also touched on his experiences with the former Nickelodeon producer Dan Schneider, who's recently been accused of inappropriate conduct with young actors.

The following interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.

I want to start off by talking about a facet of your career that I think some people overlook, which is your voice acting work. You've been doing voice acting for two decades now, whether it be childhood classics like "Clifford" or cult favorites like Disney's "Motorcity." You've even been nominated for a Daytime Emmy for your work in voice acting. How does your voice acting differ in emotion or mindset from your live action work?

I love doing voiceover work because I love cartoons and I love animation. I've worked with a lot of different voiceover actors and it's just awesome because it's still physical. I really get into it. I get up from my chair and really get physical within the characters that I play. I want my characters to have the same physical comedy or the same energy that I have, so I really get into it. [Another] cool thing about voiceovers is that you can go however. You can go in your pajamas if you want to!

Two of the characters that Kel Mitchell has voiced include T-Bone from PBS' "Clifford the Big Red Dog," and Dutch from Disney's "Motorcity."

Speaking of animated work, last year, Brian Robbins [director of "Good Burger" and Paramount Pictures CEO] said that he wanted to create a "Good Burger" animated series. Do you have any knowledge about that?

I do have knowledge about that. That was a great conversation that we had. He called me up and was like, "Hey, let's do an animation with 'Good Burger,'" and I believe Chance was part of that too, Chance the Rapper. I might be giving away too much information for you. But yeah, they're definitely part of it. We were super excited but then that went on hold because of something else we're doing with Good Burger, which I think you might know.

Well, I think that that's a pretty good segue into what I wanted to talk about next, which was "Good Burger 2." You've hinted at it a few times online and on TV. It's been a rumor for years and now it sounds like it's finally going into becoming a real thing. I'd like to know: How did that go from being a Jimmy Fallon skit to an actual realized movie?

Oh, man, I was shooting "Game Shakers" at that point when they called up to do the Jimmy Fallon sketch. Kenan and I both just had so much fun doing that. Seeing the fans' reactions was awesome.

"Good Burger" is just the gift that keeps giving, since so many people have so many fond memories of the first time they watched it. I met a couple that said that [seeing "Good Burger"] was their first date, and then they got married, and now every anniversary they go and see "Good Burger" because it's part of their life, so it's so deep to me.

When we decided to do "Good Burger 2," what was really important is the writing process, because the thing about it is that we didn't want to ruin it for fans because they loved "Good Burger" Part One so much. For Kenan and I, it's very important that the story is really put together well. That's why I decided to post the script for the table read, because the script is in a really good place.

A post shared by Kel Mitchell

A surge of Wall Street players are screaming that Elon Musk's Twitter obsession is hurting Tesla

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 10:56am
Elon Musk is the CEO of both Twitter and Tesla.
  • SEC filings on Wednesday revealed Elon Musk sold $3.6 billion more in Tesla stock.
  • Analysts speculate the proceeds will help cover Twitter's deficits, raising concerns.
  • Dan Ives stated that Musk is 'using Tesla as his own ATM machine' to fund Twitter.

The impact of Elon Musk buying Twitter on Tesla is getting scarier for investors. For the third time, after saying in April that he had "no further TSLA sales planned," filings made on Wednesday revealed Musk sold 22 million more shares of Tesla, valued some $3.6 billion. That brings the total amount of Tesla stock that Musk has sold this year to $23 billion.

Just a few days ago, Musk promised that in the long haul, Tesla would benefit from his ownership of Twitter. But there's growing skepticism from analysts that will happen. Dan Ives at Wedbush wrote in a report on Thursday that Twitter remains a nightmare for investors because Musk has been using "Tesla as his own ATM machine to keep funding" the social network. 

Tesla's falling electric vehicle sales as countries around the world face their own recessions amid the ongoing fall out of the pandemic isn't necessarily a shock. But it does present a problem for Tesla and its owner, who continues to use its shares to fund his refashioning of Twitter for his ventures to build out 'the everything app' that he refers to under the name "X."

Ultimately, Elon promised Tesla shareholders they'd benefit from Twitter. He also promised he wouldn't sell any more Tesla stock. It's up to Tesla investors to decide whether he plans to keep his promise.

 

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"Elon is Tesla's brand. He needs to pull it together," Loup Ventures' Gene Munster said to CNBC earlier this week. Some, like major Tesla shareholder KoGuan Leo, have gone so far as to suggest that Musk has "abandoned" his duties at the carmaker, and called for a new CEO to replace him.

Meanwhile, Insider has reported on a slate of problems for Twitter that include: advertisers that have suspended their activity on the platform; the failure of Elon's reimagined Twitter Blue; growing concern around the rise of bigotry on the platform; and Elon's troubling political tweets that seem to be adding to the non-stop swirl of controversy around the company. 

In his note to clients, Ives maintained an outperform rating for Tesla, indicating that he expects Tesla's rate of return to do better than its peers despite signs that it won't be the best performer in the batch.

Munster, for his part, further admonished that Elon would cause long-term damage if he does nothing about the number of issues arising from the billionaire's purchase of Twitter. 

The broader market is also worried. Tesla's stock has dropped 31% since Musk bought Twitter at the end of October. When you track how the stock has held up since Musk's offer to buy Twitter in mid-April, it's down 52%. It should be noted that tech stocks lost trillions of dollars in value this year due to a drop in consumer demand, inflation, and the overall market correction from the astronomical multiples seen the year before.

Tesla faces other issues besides Musk's Twitter problems. The company is no longer the main electric car maker on the block in multiple countries. Since new entrants have carved out their own market share and traditional automakers have successfully launched a series of hybrids and their own EV models, Tesla has seen a rise in competition in the US, China, and parts of Europe

It was only earlier this month that Bloomberg reported that Tesla was slashing some of its production output in China by 20% to 30%, a sign that the reality of sales didn't live up to what they were projected to be. It's been also reported that the EV maker lowered the cost of its cars in China in an attempt to boost sales. It worked, but Tesla ultimately lost out to its Chinese competition, BYD.

"More activism and growing investor frustration will force the Board of Tesla to confront some of these issues head on in the near-term. This is a moment of truth for Musk and Tesla," wrote Ives.

Correction, December 16, 2022In a previous version of this article, we misstated that Gene Munster spoke to Insider. He made his comments during an appearance on CNBC.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Elon Musk and AOC got into another Twitter spat, with the congresswoman telling Musk to 'lay off the proto-fascism' and put down his phone

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 2:00am
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Elon Musk.
  • Elon Musk and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez got into another tiff on Twitter on Thursday night.
  • She told Musk to "lay off the proto-fascism" and try putting down his phone.
  • In response, Musk tweeted: "You first lol." 

Elon Musk and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are in another Twitter spat.

On Thursday evening, Musk suspended the accounts of at least half a dozen journalists and tweeted an explanation for the move. He claimed the suspended journalists had doxxed him, a violation of Twitter's updated privacy policy that was put in place on Wednesday.

Ocasio-Cortez tweeted a response to Musk's explanation.

"You're a public figure. An extremely controversial and powerful one. I get feeling unsafe, but descending into abuse of power + erratically banning journalists only increases the intensity around you," Ocasio-Cortez wrote.

"Take a beat and lay off the proto-fascism. Maybe try putting down your phone," she added.

The congresswoman added that she understands where Musk is coming from, saying that she, too, has been "subject to real + dangerous plots."

"I didn't have security and have experienced many scary incidents," she tweeted. "In fact, many of the right-wing outlets you now elevate published photos of my home, car, etc. At a certain point you gotta disconnect." 

Some 20 minutes later, Musk tweeted his response: "You first lol."

Musk also alleged on Thursday that the suspended journalists had posted his real-time location online, calling them "basically assassination coordinates." Insider was unable to independently verify if the journalists had posted the coordinates on their accounts.

Among the individuals whose accounts were suspended are CNN's Donie O'Sullivan, The Washington Post's Drew Harwell, The New York Times' Ryan Mac, as well as independent journalists Aaron RuparKeith Olbermann, and Tony Webster.

Musk and Ocasio-Cortez have had several tense exchanges on Twitter. In April, Ocasio-Cortez called Musk a "billionaire with an ego problem" who only bought Twitter "because Tucker Carlson or Peter Thiel took him to dinner and made him feel special." In response, Musk tweeted: "Stop hitting on me, I'm really shy."

In November, Ocasio-Cortez hit out at Musk for "trying to sell people on the idea that 'free speech' is actually a $8/mo subscription plan," referring to the billionaire's plan to charge Twitter subscribers a premium for verification.

Musk replied to the congresswoman's tweet, saying: "Your feedback is appreciated, now pay $8."

Also in November, Ocasio-Cortez reacted to Musk's public poll on whether former President Donald Trump's Twitter account should be reinstated. 

"Idk man, last time he was here this platform was used to incite an insurrection, multiple people died, the Vice President of the United States was nearly assassinated, and hundreds were injured but I guess that's not enough for you to answer the question. Twitter poll it is," Ocasio-Cortez said in a tweeted response to Musk.

Ocasio-Cortez and Musk did not immediately respond to Insider's requests for comment.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Poland's top police chief was injured after a gift he received from a Ukrainian official exploded, Polish authorities say

Fri, 12/16/2022 - 12:32am
Police Commander in Chief, Inspector General of Polish Police, Jaroslaw Szymczyk, during the celebration of the Police Day in Podkarpackie Voivodeship (Subcarpathia Province) held in Rzeszow.
  • A Polish police commander suffered minor injuries after a gift he received from Ukraine exploded.
  • Polish authorities said the present was from a head of Ukraine's law enforcement and rescue agencies.
  • Poland said on Thursday that it's asked Ukraine for an explanation.

Poland is seeking answers from Ukraine after a Ukrainian official's gift to a top Polish police commander exploded near the latter's office, authorities said on Thursday.

Jarosław Szymczyk, the chief of Poland's police, suffered minor injuries from the explosion on Wednesday and was admitted to a hospital for observation, the Polish Interior Ministry said in a statement.

"Yesterday at 7:50 a.m., an explosion occurred in a room adjacent to the office of the Police Commander-in-Chief," the statement read.

"One of the presents the Commandant received during his working visit to Ukraine on December 11 and 12 exploded," it continued.

According to the statement, the gift was from a head official of the Ukrainian Police and Emergency Situations.

A civilian employee at the Polish headquarters also suffered minor injuries but did not require hospitalization, the ministry said.

The ministry said it asked Ukraine for an explanation and that a case was opened with the prosecutor's office and corresponding services.

The incident comes a month after a missile strike during a Russian attack on Ukraine killed two people in Poland. Both NATO and Poland later said the missile was likely Ukrainian air defence, though NATO General Secretary Jens Stoltenberg said Russia was still to blame for the deaths because it launched the initial attack.

Poland's Interior Ministry and Ukraine's Foreign Ministry did not immediately respond to Insider's requests for comment.

Read the original article on Business Insider


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