This week we talk about (1) the unveiling of a humanoid robot prototype from Tesla, (2) China betting big on methanol cars, (3) Ethereum’s long-awaited energy-saving ‘Merge’ upgrade, (4) how today’s technologists are pitching a vision in which players don’t just control Sims-like characters, they become them.

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▶ 📧 Welcome to Tenedos

I round up the best articles of the week and send them to a group of people who are as passionate about the world of technology as I am. I do this to keep up with this rapidly changing world. My main areas of interest are emerging technologiesblockchain and the world of innovation in general.

▶ 📚 In short

  • Are we witnessing the beginning of the humanoid robots mass production era? Last Friday Elon Musk has unveiled the humanoid ‘Optimus’ robot at the Tesla’s AI day [link, #robot #humanoid #tesla]
  • We hear a lot about electric cars, but what about alternatives? China is investing on methanol cars as an alternative to electric vehicles [link, #methanol, #methanolcars]
  • Ethereum, the second largest blockchain network after Bitcoin, finishes its long-awaited energy-saving ‘Merge’ upgrade [link, #ethereum #ethereummerge]
  • More than three decades after SimCity, tech companies, retailers and governments are using the game’s basic building blocks to create three-dimensional worlds [link, #digitalcities, #smartcity, #simcity]

▶ 🔝 Must reads

▶▶ Humanoid robot unveiled at Tesla’s AI Day

A prototype of the humanoid robot ‘Optimus’ took the stage and greeted the seated audience. A video was shown in which the robot carried a box, watered plants and moved metal bars in the automaker’s plant.

Are we observing the beginning of the era of mass production humanoid robots?

▶▶ China is investing on methanol cars

Methanol (commonly called “wood alcohol”) is a simple organic chemical that can be produced from a variety of sources, including coal, natural gas, biomass, and captured carbon dioxide.

As a fuel methanol is as powerful as traditional fuel, but greener. It has already been widely used in race-cars because it gives the engine more horsepower while keeping it cooler.

In some scenarios like long-haul transportation, methanol-powered vehicles can be more affordable and dependable than EVs. 

▶▶ Ethereum finishes its long-awaited energy-saving ‘Merge’ upgrade

The Ethereum, the second largest blockchain network after Bitcoin, completed the crypto world’s biggest and most complicated software upgrade to date (according to its co-founder Vitalik Buterin).

Called the ‘Merge’, it replaced power-hungry computers that were used to order transactions on the network with a more energy-efficient set-up using piles of the network’s native token, Ether, placed in special, so-called staking wallets.

As a result, Ethereum’s energy consumption will decline by an estimated 99%.

▶▶ How do you build a digital city?

Today’s technologists are pitching a vision in which players don’t just control Sims-like characters: they become them.

While nothing, or very little, exists today that holds all the component parts of a city in one cohesive package, individual developers and large corporations are creating metaverse spaces that could function as essential parts.

▶ 🤝 Let’s stay in touch

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Disclaimer: the content of this newsletter is for informational purposes only and it represents the opinions of Michele Remonato.

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