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Russian President Vladimir Putin confirmed Sunday the staff at US diplomatic missions in Russia will be cut in response to a sanctions bill the US Congress passed last week.
MOSCOW/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin said the United States would have to cut its diplomatic staff in Russia by 755 people and that Russia could consider imposing additional measures against the United States as a response to new U.S. sanctions approved by Congress.
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican authorities said on Sunday they rescued 147 Central Americans abandoned in the wilderness of Veracruz state after suspected human smugglers forced them out of the cramped tractor trailer they were traveling in on their way to the United States.
DUBAI (Reuters) - Iraq`s influential Shi`ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr made a rare visit to Saudi Arabia on Sunday, where he met the Saudi crown prince and other officials, Saudi state news agency SPA reported.
As President Donald Trump prepares to sign the Russia sanctions legislation, which easily cleared Congress last week, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov threatened further retaliation against the US Sunday morning.
The editors of London`s Sunday Times and the newspaper`s Irish edition have apologized after publishing an article Sunday suggesting that two well-known British TV and radio presenters were paid more than other women because they were Jewish.
  • Tesla Model 3Tesla faces perhaps its biggest challenge yet: Producing hundreds of thousands of its mass-market Model 3 sedan.
  • Hokuto Ueda, a Harvard Business School grad who oversaw the launch of the Tesla Model S and the Gigafactory, says there are two types of employees who thrive during big production ramp-ups at Tesla.
  • The electric-car company has struggled to reach production targets in the past, but CEO Elon Musk said previous experience should make Model 3 production go more smoothly.

A big question surrounding the Tesla Model 3 is not about the mass-market electric car`s features and specs, or what the final price will be. It`s not even about the first few owners who got their cars on Friday night.

The question goes all the way back to the Model 3`s roots — the legion of engineers and designers whose fingerprints are all over Tesla`s first entry-level electric sedan.

Those people will no doubt occupy a special place in Tesla`s legacy, helping to execute CEO Elon Musk`s vision of mainstreaming the electric car.

It is safe to conclude that it takes a certain kind of person to successfully carry out stretch mandates handed down by Musk, arguably one of the most ambitious tech, transportation, and environmental visionaries of our time.

A former Tesla engineer who managed the launch of the Model S offered some insight about who succeeds at Tesla at a time such as this, when the company is bringing a new car to market.

Be a manufacturing genius, or be an idea machine

Hokuto Ueda, a Harvard Business School graduate who was on the team that took the Model S from prototype to delivery and launched Tesla`s Gigafactory, told Business Insider in an interview that, based on his experience, people who are experts in manufacturing are the ones who excel at Tesla, above all others.

"They`re the types who got their start at established automakers like Toyota," Ueda said. "They`re very well-versed in traditional manufacturing, but they can understand that the circumstances are different at Tesla."

Hokuto Ueda"You have to unlearn some of what you know from previous experience and be flexible enough to come up with new ideas," Ueda said. He worked at Tesla for five years before leaving in 2015 to start Drivemode, a Panasonic-backed startup whose app turns smartphones into infotainment systems for cars that don`t have the latest tech.

Indeed, Tesla`s main assembly plant in Fremont, California, is a perfect demonstration of new ideas. It`s considered one of the most technologically advanced production facilities on the planet and it`s equipped with more than a hundred robots tasked with assembling the Model 3, Model S, and Model X.

"The second type of people who thrive during a production ramp-up at Tesla," Ueda said, "are people who are like I was when I first started there. I had never worked in a factory before. I was an automotive engineer, but I was designing electronic components. I knew very little about manufacturing."

Ueda said that helped him go into the process of building the first Model S cars with a clean slate and no hang-ups about how things should go.

"You’re not really tied to industry practices. You’re able to think flexibly," he said. "Of course, a combination of the two engineering mindsets are very much necessary to avoid big mistakes, especially around safety and things like that. But the philosophy is different."

The electric-car company has struggled to reach production targets in the past, but still, Musk said previous experience should make Model 3 production go more smoothly.

Tesla Model 3

To hell and back again

During Tesla`s Model 3 handover event in Fremont on Friday night, Musk offered an honest assessment of the challenges that lie ahead for production. "Frankly, we`re gonna be in production hell," Musk said jokingly.

But, with an estimated 500,000 Model 3 pre-orders on the books, he really wasn`t kidding about hell:

"That`s gonna be where we are for at least six months. Maybe longer. But, you guys know that — you`re veterans — you`ve been through this. So, I look forward to working alongside you, journeying through hell."

Musk told Business Insider`s Matt DeBord earlier Friday that the Model 3 hell will be less hellish than the hells Tesla endured when it launched the original Roadster, the Model S and the Model X.

Musk took a more valiant tone on the matter later that evening at the big event: "As the saying goes, if you`re going through hell — keep going."

SEE ALSO: Elon Musk on Model 3: `We`re going to go through at least 6 months of production hell`

DON`T MISS: `Dude, there`s no way that`s gonna happen`: What it`s like at Tesla when a new car is about to hit the streets

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NOW WATCH: Tesla is finally delivering the Model 3 — here`s everything you need to know about the car

MOSCOW (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin said Russia will expel 755 U.S. diplomatic staff and could consider imposing additional measures against the United States as a response to new U.S. sanctions, although not for now.
British Transport Police say they have charged a 27-year-old man in connection with the rape of a 14-year-old girl who was subjected to two separate sexual attacks in one night in Birmingham, England.
The four Arab countries leading an embargo against Qatar are ready to talk but not to back down from their demands, the quartet`s foreign ministers said in a joint press conference Sunday in Manama, Bahrain.
With the outcome not in question, a major vote in Venezuela on Sunday could mark a stark turning point for the country.
The United States said it conducted a successful missile defense test in the Pacific Ocean on Sunday amid growing tensions with North Korea.
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russia could consider imposing additional measures against the United States but he opposed such moves for now.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Thousands of people rallied in Turkey`s largest city on Sunday against security measures Israel has imposed at the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, shortly after Israel removed other measures that led to two weeks of violent Palestinian protests.
The remains of the toddler with an elongated skull in Crimea. Credit: Archaeology Fund

The remains of a 1.5-year-old boy with a pronounced elongation of the skull have been found by archaeologists at a 2,000-year-old burial site in Crimea. Russian archaeologists say that the skull deformation indicates that this boy was marked out to be a warrior.

RT.com reports that the skeletal remains were found at a Sarmatian cemetery dating between 1st and 3rd century AD near the village of Yakovenkovo in eastern Crimea. It was excavated ahead of work connected with the new giant bridge to link the Crimean Peninsula with mainland Russia.

The 2,000-year-old remains were found near the construction of the Crimean bridge, pictured.

The 2,000-year-old remains were found near the construction of the Crimean bridge, pictured. (CC by 4.0)

The Archaeology Fund, which organizes excavations of historically important sites across Central Russia, Crimea, and Northern Africa, jokingly referred to the site as the “alien’s grave”, as elongated skulls are often seen in illustrations of extraterrestrials.

Photo Credit: The Egyptian Federation of Wushu Kung Fu Facebook Page

Egypt has won the 6th African Wushu Kung Fu Championship and ranked first in Wushu Sanda and Taolu – martial art styles, at the African championship held in Benin on 19 July to 24 July. 

The African championship hosted 15 African countries to compete for the title; Egypt triumphed both Wushu Sanda and Taolu competitions.

In the Wushu Sanda competitions, Egyptians won multiple rankings. Mohammed Khaled won 56kg competitions, Islam Najib won 60kg, Gomaa Rajab 65kg, Ayman Galal 80kg, Hagar Ragab 60kg, and Omar Mamdouh in the weight of 85kg, and finally, Frida won second place in the weight of 52kg.

More Egyptian players ranked first in the Chang QuanJian Shu and Qiang Shu – martial art competitions – such as Islam Mohammad Mohammed, Hajar Mohammed Al Sayed, Ahmed Hassan Abdel Salam, Amr Ibrahim Abdul Rahman and Abdul Rahman Ihab Khairuddin.

The Egyptian delegation included Sherif Mustafa, president of the Egyptian and African federations, vice president of the Wushu Kung Fu International Federation, seven Wushu Sanda players, five Taolu players and a coach.

Wushu Sanda is a martial art which was originally developed from the study and practices of traditional Kung Fu. It is considered one of the two components of Chinese martial arts training and is often taught alongside Wushu Taolu – or forms – training.

CARACAS/PUERTO ORDAZ, Venezuela, (Reuters) - Protestors blocked roads and clashed with security forces on Sunday as Venezuelans trickled to the polls to elect a constitutional super-body that unpopular leftist President Nicolas Maduro vowed would begin a "new era of combat" in the crisis-stricken nation.
TEL AVIV (Reuters) - An Israeli military appeal court upheld a manslaughter conviction and 18-month jail sentence on Sunday for a former army conscript who killed an incapacitated Palestinian assailant in the occupied West Bank.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A top Russian diplomat on Sunday lambasted the United States Congress for voting to sanction Russia, and warned of retaliation by Moscow.
CARACAS/PUERTO ORDAZ, Venezuela, (Reuters) - Streets were deserted on Sunday as a minority of Venezuelans trickled to the polls to elect a constitutional super-body that unpopular leftist President Nicolas vowed would begin a new era of combat in the crisis-stricken nation.


  • Chase and NowThis are rolling out a new content channel focused on personal finance.
  • NowThis Money will be the result of collaboration between the two companies` marketing teams.
  • It`s the latest example of marketers treading into territory once owned by media firms, and vice versa.

Lots of media companies are making content specifically for paying advertisers. And lots of advertisers are making more of their own content. NowThis and Chase are trying to find out whether the combination of the two yields something bigger.

The two companies on Thursday are rolling out NowThis Money, a new digital media brand aimed at helping millennials navigate personal-finance questions. NowThis and Chase describe the effort as a partnership through which both companies will create content.

It`s the latest evolution of a trend in the ad business, as marketers look for ways to reach ad-avoidant consumers who are glued to their mobile devices. While marketers frequently sponsor sections of websites or hire web publishers` in-house teams to create editorial content on their behalf, this aspires to take things to another level, Ben Lerer, the CEO of NowThis` parent company, Group Nine, told Business Insider.

Over the past four years, Chase has built out a 10-person newsroom and has been churning out mostly text content tied to financial tips for consumers, like advice on when to buy a house.

NowThis has built out a vibrant social video distribution network, including over 11.6 million Facebook followers and several sub-brands, including NowThis Politics.

NowThis had noticed a budding interest among its users in financial information. And in talking with Chase, the two firms saw a fit to collaborate. "People in this generation are thinking about careers in totally different ways, and they see things like higher education and debt differently," Lerer said. And when it comes to having reverence for financial institutions like Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan, he said, "they don`t have that ingrained."

To remedy that, NowThis is helping Chase translate its existing editorial content into social-media-ready quick videos, such as 30-second snippets on how to be a cost-conscious wedding guest and when the cheapest days are to travel.

This initiative meshes well with a broader JPMorgan Chase strategy to court millennials. The banking giant has earmarked a significant amount of spending toward getting this generation signed up for checking accounts, for example, by pushing mobile banking and using relatable celebrities.

To be sure, Chase and NowThis are entering a crowded arena. Not only are high-profile startups like Cheddar going after a business-interested millennial audience, but a slew of personal-finance-centric digital publications have recently joined the party, including Dow Jones` Moneyish, Time Inc.`s Coinage, and the Facebook-born Stackin.


NowThis Money starts with 10 to 15 clips, and the plan will be to churn out up to 150 videos a month that will be distributed on both NowThis and Chase`s social channels, said Brian Becker, who leads Chase`s newsroom.

"We`ve kind of moved away from just sponsoring a channel and letting it go," he said. "We`re extremely involved in the production." In fact, Becker said, while Chase is still working with ad agencies, this sort of project replaces the role of the bank`s traditional creative ad shop.

Whether the creative in this case breaks through is an open question. The short NowThis Money videos don`t feature much in the way of overt selling but instead carry a subtle Chase logo in the upper part of the video screen.

"It`s a big challenge, and you have to be sensitive," Becker said. "You probably need to see a few of these videos to have an impact."

The bigger impact for NowThis Money could be on the digital ad business. If the venture proves successful, expect more marketers to adopt such a model.

"We think this could be a template for how to think about media companies` relationship with brands," Lerer said. "The idea here is that we`re both going to push each other."

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Here`s how Google Maps knows when there is traffic

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Brazilian federal judge Sergio Moro, the man behind Brazil`s largest ever corruption investigation, said there is still lack of interest from the country`s political establishment to fight corruption, despite the political and economic crisis the practice sent the country into.
DUBAI (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia`s foreign minister called Qatar`s demands for an internationalization of the Muslim hajj pilgrimage a declaration of war against the kingdom, Saudi-owned Al Arabiya television said on Sunday, although it was unclear whether Qatar had actually made any such demand.

Guggenheim Museum

If you`ve ever roamed down the eggshell-colored, spiral ramp of the Guggenheim Museum in New York City, you`ve had the pleasure of experiencing a Frank Lloyd Wright original.

When it comes to American architecture, Wright is a legend.

He championed organic architecture, or the belief that buildings should live in harmony with the environment.

Wright "created a new form that would resonate over time, always testing new ideas and materials," the director of Wright`s Fallingwater, Lynda Waggoner, told Business Insider.

Here are some of his greatest works.

SEE ALSO: 11 of the most beautiful new homes around the world

Fallingwater, a home built over a 30-foot waterfall in southwest Pennsylvania, is a National Historic Landmark — declared 43 years ago this month.

"It was connected with nature in a very intimate way," Waggoner said. "Its furnishings grow from the house like the house grows from its setting."

The interior is just as harmonious. "He was always looking ahead, not backward," Waggoner said.

One of ten of Wright`s works nominated as World Heritage sites, the Unity Temple in Illinois revolutionized church architecture.

"He turned his back on traditional church architecture," Waggoner said.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider
RABAT (Reuters) - Morocco`s King Mohammed VI has pardoned dozens of people arrested in recent protests in a northern region and blamed the failure of local officials to quickly implement development projects for stoking public anger.
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - As Pakistani cricket star-turned-politician Imran Khan prepared for a victory rally to celebrate the success of his campaign to remove Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif from office, he said his aim was to take the job himself next year.
CARACAS/BARINAS, Venezuela, (Reuters) - Streets were desolate early Sunday with barricades in some areas as Venezuelans began voting for a constitutional super-body expected to hand sweeping powers to ruling Socialist Party officials and potentially extend their unpopular rule.

There are tens of millions of physical copies of the original "Super Mario Bros." for the Nintendo Entertainment System. As such, buying the game is usually a trifling matter — a few bucks at most at your local garage sale.

But this copy is different, and it just sold on eBay for over 30,000.

Super Mario Bros. (rare copy)

What makes this particularly copy of the original "Super Mario Bros." so valuable is that it`s a particularly early copy of the game; additionally, it`s still in the original shrink wrap from when it was sold (for 26.99!) back in the 1980s.

Since the original "Super Mario Bros." came out in 1985, that means this copy has been preserved perfectly for over 30 years. The seller spoke with Kotaku — he said the game had "been sitting in his office for years" when he decided to put it up for auction on eBay. The auction started at one penny, eventually reaching a grand total of 30,100.44; the seller has reportedly been paid already.

Few games demand such high prices at auction.

One particularly notable example is a game named "Nintendo World Championship," which isn`t a game that was actually released but rather a collection of snippets of NES-era Nintendo games that the company used during a series of in-person competitions. Since few cartridges were ever manufactured, it`s become an ultra-rare collector`s item — when it does pop up on eBay, it often goes for thousands (or tens of thousands) of dollars.

What will become of this very rare, very early copy of "Super Mario Bros." remains to be seen. You can, of course, play the original "Super Mario Bros." whenever you`d like on dozens of different devices. And don`t worry: You don`t need 30K to play.

SEE ALSO: The 10 best Super Mario games ever made

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NOW WATCH: Nintendo dropped another trailer for `Super Mario Odyssey` — and it looks amazing

sam altman

In a not-too-distant future city, superintelligent robots will carry out the majority of vital tasks. Driverless cars will ferry passengers to and from points of interest. Housing and healthcare will be affordable, if not free to all. Political leaders and technologists will speak the same language. And life is good.

Sam Altman, the 32-year-old president of Y Combinator, the most prestigious startup accelerator in Silicon Valley, has laid out this utopian vision over the years, and most definitively in a job listing posted on YC`s blog in June 2016.

"We`re seriously interested in building new cities and we think we know how to finance it if everything else makes sense," the post read. "We need people with strong interests and bold ideas in architecture, ecology, economics, politics, technology, urban planning, and much more."

Free houses, built by robots

Like many of his peers in Silicon Valley, Altman believes technology is the way to a better future. But his real-world ambitions are grander than most. He wants to investigate ways to build new cities, give people money for nothing, rethink voter registration, keep politicians accountable, and get new, Altman-approved leaders elected — all while running YC, which famously birthed startups like Airbnb and Dropbox.

Much like one of his notable colleagues, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Altman is set on turning the ideal into the practical. Both believe they have solid ideas for reshaping society. Sometimes this means executing plans within the next few months. Other times it means roadmapping projects decades down the line, and relying on phrases like "The math should work out" to assuage a wary public.

"I have a very strong vision of where I`d like to see the world go," Altman said. "And I don`t think it gets there by startups alone."

Sam Altman Elon Musk

In 2005, at age 19, Altman dropped out of Stanford to found the social-networking app Loopt, which he sold in 2012. In 2014, he replaced Paul Graham as YC president. These days, he says he spends 80% of his 65-hour weeks helping startups sort through their growing pains and get to market as fast as possible. The remaining 20% is dedicated to outside projects.

His baby is OpenAI, a nonprofit he cochairs with Musk that searches for benevolent ways to use artificial intelligence in daily life. Altman`s vision for how OpenAI could be deployed sheds light on how he wants to help people in real ways.

"Let`s imagine we get to a world where AI gets so good that robots can mine raw materials out of the ground, refine them, and build them into a house," he told Business Insider. (These robots, he clarified, are solar-powered.) "You can imagine a world where you own a small piece of land, you can say, `Hey, robot. I would like a house here,` and you come back like a month later and there`s a fully constructed house built for you for free."

Phoenix Arizona homesAltman sees that kind of far-future scenario as a boon for towns and cities plagued by a shortage of affordable housing. He`s seen the plight firsthand, from his home state of California to middle America.

In November 2016, shortly after Donald Trump won the presidency, Altman left YC`s headquarters in Mountain View, California, in search of 100 supporters of the president-elect. He asked them about their political views, their fears, and their gripes with America`s political landscape. He later published his findings on his blog for the world to see. "People don`t believe they have an economic future," he said.

Over the past year, Altman has expressed a deep interest in resolving those economic concerns.

"[Fifty] years from now, I think it will seem ridiculous that we used fear of not being able to eat as a way to motivate people," he wrote in a January 2016 blog post on YC. "I also think that it`s impossible to truly have equality of opportunity without some version of guaranteed income."

That blog post announced YC`s intentions to launch an experiment in universal basic income (UBI), a system of wealth distribution that pays participants a set amount of money to use however they want. The premise, which is being tested in more than a half-dozen locations around the world, is that UBI can create a social safety net that reduces or even eliminates poverty.

Altman`s own experiment is small, for now. It`s running in Oakland, California, and involves about 100 people getting between 1,000 and 2,000 a month. The goal is to get some practice with delivering the money and collecting data. If that data come back showing basic income has left people better off, both emotionally and financially, YC will expand the project in a five-year, nationwide trial.

The same old Silicon Valley?

Society is poised to lose millions of jobs to AI, the prevailing research suggests. And it`s propelled in part by Silicon Valley-types like Altman, who himself is researching how robotics can replace human labor on a grand scale with projects like OpenAI. In recognition of that responsibility, he believes the tech world should at least be trying something.

"I don`t know if [basic income] is the answer or not to this massive technological revolution we`re in the middle of," he said, "but it is something I`d like to study."

Sam Altman

But for all his involvement in political issues, Altman doesn`t consider himself a political person. He was raised in St. Louis to a pair of Democrat parents, with childhood memories of his time as a Boy Scout, tinkering with his Macintosh, and reading science fiction. He was interested more in computers than current events.

It`s really only been since 2014, when he replaced Graham as YC`s president, that he started to take a serious interest in how technology could improve the political process and the future of humanity. He began thinking of ways to broaden both his and YC`s horizons to support more nonprofits, like the ACLU, and startups focused purely on hard science, which he sees as vital to humanity`s progress.

Some have criticized Altman`s larger-than-life goals, claiming they are ambitious to a fault. When news broke last spring that he wanted to build brand-new cities, Allison Arieff, editorial director of the San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association, wrote on Twitter, "Y Combinator Aims to Build a New City From Scratch Because No One Has Ever Tried That Before."

And writing for Gizmodo, Alissa Walker questioned why YC even felt the need to build a brand-new city, given all that`s wrong with existing urban areas. "Why not simply focus on improving the city of Mountain View, California, where Y Combinator is already located," she wrote, "and which certainly needs to find solutions to many of these urban problems (some due to startups like Airbnb which Y Combinator has backed)?"

Anand Giridharadas, an author and New York Times columnist who writes about technology, politics, and society, has written that Silicon Valley in general is obsessed with what he calls "regressive innovation," or the act of creating solutions that don`t actually make life better for people. Speaking with Business Insider, he referred to such VCs as "world-changer incubator-messiahs."

Altman, for his part, has said he prefers to use the phrase "change the world" only after he`s already done so.

sam altman

In most cases, he sees his role more as a facilitator than a doer. He understands the technology side of his projects, but he still relies on people more well versed in economics, public policy, and urban planning to inform them, he said.

"I don`t think tech is the solution to all problems," he said. "And I certainly don`t think startups are the solution to all problems. They`re the solution to a lot, but if the tech industry doesn`t think about how everybody wins and everybody benefits, then we`ve kind of failed."

Elizabeth Rhodes picked up on that mind-set in her first face-to-face encounter with Altman, earlier this February. Rhodes was wrapping up her doctorate in political science and social work at the University of Michigan and had applied to lead YC`s nascent basic-income project. In May, YC announced she had been selected.

"He was definitely very passionate about people`s struggles," Rhodes recalled of her first meeting with Altman. Now more than a year into the job, she said Altman`s interest in solving social problems through policy has come more into focus. "He`s able to see more systemic changes that we could make, and he`s not afraid to say, `Let`s try testing it out.`"


It`s easy to compare Altman`s outsize ambitions to Elon Musk and his many projects. But Altman calls the comparison "ridiculous," since he considers the serial entrepreneur less of an equal as much as a singular, multi-industry titan. "Elon is in a class by himself," Altman said.

The basic similarities are there. Musk has said in repeated interviews that the future grips him so deeply, without a passion for it he would never get out of bed in the morning. Altman envisions far-off societies hiring robots to build houses and giving people free cash from the government. He also shares Musk`s view that these kinds of mega-projects aren`t crazy. At the 2015 Vanity Fair Summit, the two appeared onstage to discuss, in calm voices, how they might live on Mars or harness the sun for nuclear energy.

"I believe that most things I work on are practical and someday will be hugely important," Altman told Business Insider.

Rewriting the social contract

In May, rumors began to swirl that Altman`s political interests had compelled him to run for California governor in 2018. He seemed to be making a familiar transition from the private world into the public spotlight — a move Carly Fiorina, Peter Thiel, and other prominent Silicon Valley names had made before him.

But Altman ultimately went a different route. In mid-July he put the rumors to bed by issuing an open call on his blog for similar-minded political candidates that he could support. He could offer money, connections, and tech to help them get into the governor`s office.

His requirements for the candidate: They should believe affordable housing is one of the most pressing issues in the state, because, as Altman put it, "The high cost of living hurts poor people the most, and it`s destroying our country." And they should believe in single-payer healthcare, clean energy, skills-based education, and rewriting tax codes that favor the middle class.

"It`s this pro-growth, pro-innovation, and pro-distribution idea," Altman said, "where we`re going to have — as we`ve had after every technological revolution — we`re going to have to rewrite the social contract."

What we`re going for is a few really big world-changing hits and a lot of failures along the way.

Altman`s move into politics reflects the ways philanthropy has shifted in recent years, fusing entrepreneurship with social causes, according to Brooks Rainwater, the director of the City Solutions and Applied Research Center at the National League of Cities. "What you`re seeing is the tech mentality of pilot projects being grafted onto the social space," he said. "And I think there`s a lot of opportunity here."

Critics tend to see that opportunity more as a threat — that entrepreneurs have no business in government because they`ll focus only on a small group of people, neglecting the masses. Even President Obama expressed doubt that leaders in the tech world could make the leap into the public realm.

Pivoting from certain projects or abandoning them altogether isn`t a matter of if, but when, Altman said.

"We try to make the cost of failing super low," he said. "What we`re going for is a few really big world-changing hits and a lot of failures along the way. I view that just as the overhead of doing business."

He applies the mentality equally to his day job of helping startups and to his societal-improvement projects.

"If you`re going to focus your life on the really long-term, somewhat implausible-sounding schemes, you have to be willing to be mocked and misunderstood," Altman said. "Right up until the day when it works."

SEE ALSO: I`m a Silicon Valley liberal, and I traveled across the country to interview 100 Trump supporters — here`s what I learned

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Mount Everest is not the tallest mountain in the world

Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers

It turns out that "Ultra Street Fighter II," a souped-up version of the 1991 classic for the new Nintendo Switch console, is a certifiable smash hit.

So far, "Ultra Street Fighter II" has sold 450,000 copies, reports developer Capcom — despite lukewarm reviews, and the ongoing shortage of the Switch console itself. Now, Capcom says it`s planning to release a flurry of new Switch games to meet this apparent demand. 

From my perspective as a Nintendo Switch owner, the reason for the runaway success of this game is simple: Every video game ever made is better, or would be better, on the Nintendo Switch. All of them. Full stop. 

Let me explain.

What Nintendo does for me

I own a PlayStation 4 and an Xbox One, and a whole heap of games to play on them. Still, I don`t get a lot of time to play games on the TV, and when I do, it`s usually for a matter of minutes, not hours. Lately, I`ve played many more games on my iPhone or Nintendo 3DS than my fancy-pants TV consoles.

It means that critically acclaimed games like "The Witcher 3" and even the older "Skyrim" have all passed me by. They`re probably both great, but I just haven`t been able to commit the 40-plus hours in front of my TV that those games would demand from me for full enjoyment. 

Back to Nintendo. In case you haven`t heard, the Nintendo Switch has a simple, killer gimmick: It`s a TV console, like an Xbox or PlayStation, but when you`re on the go, you can pick it up right off its dock and keep on playing. It even lets you split one controller into two, for impromptu two-player action. Nintendo Switch

This has been a huge boon for me, personally. The Switch is a TV console, and a thing I can take with me. All of a sudden, I don`t have to choose between playing a console game or something portable. Console games fit into my life, once again. And I suspect that I`m not alone in feeling this way. 

So, yeah, of course "Ultra Street Fighter II" sold like crazy, despite being a mediocre version of a decades-old classic. And when "Skyrim," which first released in 2011, comes out for the Switch later this year, it`ll probably sell like crazy, too. The Switch itself makes any game more accessible, and more playable, by virtue of sheer flexibility. (Plus, this early in a console`s life cycle, people are thirsty for any half-decent game, which also helps.)

Ultimately, I would urge every game developer out there to consider a Nintendo Switch version of any games they`re working on, or even that they`ve already made. Superhero fighting game "Injustice 2," for example, would be killer on the Switch. 

And, look, I get that the Nintendo Switch isn`t as powerful under the hood as the Xbox One or PlayStation 4, graphically. Speaking personally, though, I would rather play a version of a great game at a lower resolution, or with slightly diminished special effects, than I would not play it at all. 

SEE ALSO: The 11 best reasons to buy a Nintendo Switch

Join the conversation about this story »

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It takes a team of 22-3o animators to create Daenerys Targaryen`s dragons on HBO`s Game of Thrones. HBO`s visual effects team works with visual effects studio, Pixomondo, to bring the dragons to life.

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CAIRO (Reuters) - An Egyptian man who stabbed three foreign tourists to death and wounded three more earlier this month at a Red Sea resort had tried to join Islamic State, according to a police investigation, two security sources said on Sunday.
BEIRUT (Reuters) - Nearly 90,000 Iranians are expected to attend the haj in Medina this year, and were due to start arriving on Sunday, after Tehran boycotted the pilgrimage last year amid tensions with Saudi Arabia.

Photos courtesy of Squash Site

July 2017 is coming to an end with a great victory for the Egyptian squash team after Rowan El-Araby, Hania El-Hammamy, Zeina Mickawy, and Amina Yousry have won the World Junior Squash Championships in New Zealand.

This is the sixth consecutive time and the eighth time for Egypt to win the girl’s team tournament as it did before in 1999, 2003, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2015.

Moving to the individual tournaments, Egyptians El-Araby and Marwan Tarek won the girls’ and the boys’ competitions, respectively.

The victory was guaranteed for Egypt as the girls’ individual final included El-Araby and her compatriot El-Hammamy. In a match that lasted for 36 minutes, El-Araby won by a score of 3-0 (11-7/11-9/11-8).

“I did not expect it to be three-nil. All the matches I play against Hania are nearly close. This is just amazing. I am sorry, I do not really have many words right now,” said El-Araby expressing her joy.

Egypt and France competed for the boys’ individual final, it was Tarek against Victor Crouin. The first game was for Tarek (11-9). Crouin won the second game (11-3). Eager for success, the Pharaoh beat his rival (11-6) in the third game. Crouin did not lose hope and ended the fourth game to his favor (11-3). Tarek won the fifth and the decisive game by (11-3), ending a match the lasted for 58 minutes to his favor, by a total score of (3-2).

“I cannot think right now, I am the world champion, I am the world champion,” said Tarek repeatedly commenting his victory, “Dreams come true.”

Egypt won the boys’ individual tournament eleven times thanks to the following squash champions: Ahmed Barada, Ahmed Faizy, Karim Darwish, Ramy Ashour, Mohamed El-Shorbagy, Amr Khaled Khalifa, Marwan El-Shorbagy, and Karim El-Hammamy.

On the other side, Egypt won the girls’ individual competition owing to Omenya Abdel Kawy, Raneem El-Welily, Nour El-Sherbibi, Nour EL-Tayb, Habiba Mohamed, and Nouran Gohar.

LONDON (Reuters) - Allowing free movement of people after Britain leaves the European Union would not "keep faith" with the Brexit vote, the international trade secretary said, underling divisions in the government over the issue.

woman sleeping bed asleep resting peaceful shutterstock_468688070Sleep may seem like an arbitrary activity, but without it, we`d die.

That doesn`t mean it`s easy to get an adequate and consistent amount of sleep every night, though.

For expert tips on sleeping better, Business Insider turned to Patrick Fuller, an associate professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School who studies sleep.

Fuller gave us the lowdown on what he does to ensure a good night`s rest. 

Here are his seven recommendations, though the fact that this routine works well for him, of course, doesn`t guarantee it`ll be feasible with your lifestyle and schedule.

Julia Calderone wrote a previous version of this story.

SEE ALSO: How to function on only 4 hours of sleep

He wakes up at the same time every morning.

The problem many people have when trying fall asleep is that their sleep schedule isn`t a schedule at all, but a free-for-all.

If you wake up at 11 a.m. on Sunday morning but still try to fall asleep early that night to be up for work by 7 a.m. Monday, you`re not going to have enough "sleep drive" — or the desire to fall asleep.

"When people get up later and later, they have less sleep drive and they think, I can`t sleep I have insomnia," Fuller said. "Well, no, actually your sleep drive isn`t that high."

Waking up at the same time every morning is one of the most important things you can do to get a good night`s sleep, Fuller said. 

He avoids stimulants past mid-day.

At the end of a long workday, it`s tempting to turn to that late afternoon latte to power you through. But avoid that espresso machine at all costs.

Caffeine has a long half-life, meaning that it takes up to six hours to wear off, so resist the urge to slurp sodas, coffees, and teas later in the day.

Fuller skips coffee altogether and goes with a much less jolting green tea in the morning, which can have about half as much caffeine as a cup of drip coffee.

"I just prefer tea," Fuller said. "I love the smell of coffee, it just has too much caffeine for me."

He only drinks a little bit at around mid-morning, and never drinks it after noon.

He gets at least 20 to 30 minutes of exercise during the day.

Exercise is like a magical tonic that can help prevent a variety of ills such as stress, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, certain types of cancer, dementia, and more.

It`s also great for sleep. Studies have shown that morning and afternoon workouts can increase a person`s quality and amount of sleep at night.

But try not to do strenuous exercise right before bedtime, as it can boost your body temperature and activate your muscles, making it harder to fall asleep shortly after.

Fuller said that he tries to get in some form of activity every day, even if it`s just running stairs or taking a quick jog for 20 to 30 minutes.

"Maintaining some level of physical activity is really important," Fuller said.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider
DUBAI (Reuters) - Four Arab countries boycotting Qatar are ready for dialogue to ease the dispute if Doha agrees to certain demands, Bahrain`s foreign minister said on Sunday after a meeting with his counterparts.
CARACAS (Reuters) - - Venezuelans on Sunday began voting for a constitutional super-body expected to hand sweeping new powers to ruling Socialist Party officials and potentially extend their unpopular rule.
A collection of images of the ruins of Port Royal as it stands today.

Seventeenth century life in Port Royal, Jamaica, commonly referred to as "the wickedest city on earth", conjures up images of marauding pirates, treasure hunters, naval conquests, looting, and the overindulgence of food, alcohol, gambling, and women.  But the extravagances of the wealthiest port in the West Indies came to a rapid end at precisely 11:43 on 7th June 1692, when Port Royal was consumed by an earthquake and two thirds of the city sank into the sea. 

Today, Port Royal is one of the most important archaeological sites in the Caribbean and the only sunken city in the Western Hemisphere, but very little of it was recovered or even mapped out, until now. A new project by the University of Nottingham has scanned the pirate city in high-resolution using optical mapping and robotic technology. It is hoped the survey will support the Jamaican application to obtain UNESCO world heritage status for the site.

An illustration of pirates in the Caribbean.

An illustration of pirates in the Caribbean. Credit: William Gilkerson.

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistan`s lawmakers will elect a new prime minister on Tuesday to replace ousted leader Nawaz Sharif, with ruling party stalwart Shahid Khaqan Abbasi expected to become interim leader until Sharif`s own brother is eligible.
TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe`s ruling bloc avoided an embarrassing defeat on Sunday as an ally won reelection as mayor of Yokohama, with the premier planning to reshuffle his cabinet this week in an effort to boost his sagging support ratings.
MOGADISHU (Reuters) - A car bomb explosion in the Somali capital Mogadishu on Sunday killed six and wounded 20 others and the death toll was likely to rise, a police officer said.

Egypt’s Ministry of Antiquities announced that it had discovered murals and drawings in Wadi al-Natroun’s Saint Bishoy Monastery on the Cairo-Alexandria road during its restoration.

The Monastery has been undergoing restoration work since 2015 when floods had hit several monasteries in Wadi al-Natroun. The restoration is taking place under the collaboration of Ministry of Antiquities and the administration of the Monastery.

The wall paintings and architectural elements date back to the period between the 9th and 13th centuries AD, which would help archaeologists determine the original architectural style of the church in addition to stages of its construction in antiquity, Mohamed Abdellatif, assistant of the minister of antiquities for archaeological sites said in the ministry’s statement.

He went on to say that the Monastery of Saint Bishoy was subject to several modifications in its architecture during the Islamic period. These changes took place particularly in the Abbasid era in 840 AD and the Fatimid era in 1069 AD.

The newly discovered paintings are frescoes and depict saints and angels with Coptic religious inscriptions.

One painting on the west wall of the monastery depicts a woman named “Refka” with her five children who got their martyrdom during the persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire, Ahmed El-Nemr, a member of the scientific office in the ministry said.

Saint Bishoy is known in the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria as the Star of the Desert and is believed to have seen Jesus.

BERLIN (Reuters) - An Iraqi gunman died in a shootout with German police early on Sunday after killing one person in a nightclub in the southern city of Konstanz, police said, ruling out terrorism as a motive.
MOSUL, Iraq (Reuters) - Thousands of children have been separated from their parents in the nine-month battle for Mosul and the preceding years of Islamic State rule in northern Iraq - some found wandering alone and afraid among the rubble, others joining the refugee exodus from the pulverized city.
More than 22,000 fans were evacuated after a fire erupted on stage at the Tomorrowland music festival in Spain, authorities said.
Authorities in Australia foiled a terrorist plot to bring down an airplane and arrested four men Saturday, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced at a news conference in Sydney on Sunday. Police said it was an Islamist-inspired plot, but did not link the plan to a specific terror group.
MOGADISHU (Reuters) - A car bomb went off on a busy street in the Somali capital Mogadishu on Sunday, a police officer said, while a Reuters witness said the blast was followed by big clouds of smoke visible in sky.
BERLIN (Reuters) - A gunman who killed one person and injured three others in a nightclub in southern Germany on Sunday was an Iraqi citizen who had lived in the country for a long time and was not an asylum seeker, police said, ruling out terrorism as a motive.

Facebook Spaces selfie

As a technology, virtual reality is going through its awkward teenage phase.

Facebook`s chief executive Mark Zuckerberg thinks it`s how we`ll hang out in future. But for now, people who actually try virtual reality headsets say it can make them feel nauseous. The headsets are also heavy and uncomfortable.

It seems like we`re a way off people feeling like strapping a box onto their heads and diving into virtual worlds is a normal activity.

However, Facebook is trying to change that, and earlier this year released an app called Spaces to encourage people to use its social network in virtual reality. (You can read Business Insider`s full walkthrough of Facebook Spaces here.)

While Facebook made aspects of Spaces look realistic, it made a deliberate decision to make people`s avatars look cartoonish.

As an example, here`s how my Facebook Spaces avatar compares to me in real life:

Facebook Spaces

Facebook`s head of social VR, Rachel Franklin, told Business Insider that the decision was down to a phenomenon called the "uncanny valley".

This is where a robot or avatar looks very like a real human, but not quite. And the effect is so unsettling that it makes you feel ill, or even scared.

"If we go too realistic at this stage, there`s the risk of uncanny valley," she said. "When it`s almost realistic and just off enough that, instead of paying attention to you and having an experience where I`m talking to you, I`m thinking how [your avatar] doesn`t look like you, and how it`s not quite your mouth."

The uncanny valley is just a theory at this point. It was first conceived by a robotics professor to explain why humans only tend to like lifelike robots up until the point that they become too lifelike.

But tech firms take worries about the uncanny valley seriously. It`s why most robots designed for interaction with people look friendly, plasticky, and harmless.

While Facebook is in the phase of getting people on board with virtual reality, already a weird new tech, it makes sense to try and avoid any negative emotions.

Franklin said: "When you`re a cartoon, you`ve got aspects that at a glance mean I can tell it`s you. That [uncanny valley] stuff goes away and we can focus on communication."

At this point, people still need to feel like virtual reality is "welcoming" and "delightful and charming", she added.

"The idea is that it makes you giggle a little bit. You can kind of recognise yourself."

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