In The News.

San Jose Shooting

At least eight people were killed yesterday after a gunman opened fire at a rail yard in San Jose, California. The shooter, 57-year-old Samuel Cassidy, died by suicide as police officers arrived at the scene. According to reports, Cassidy set fire to his house before the shooting, though it is unclear if it was intended to distract from the impending shooting.

Officials are working to identify a motive for the attack. Cassidy’s ex-wife said her former husband had anger issues and had previously talked about carrying out a workplace attack. According to an Associated Press database, it was the 15th mass killing in the US this year, claiming a total of 86 lives.

See a timeline of events as the attack unfolded, along with the shooter’s eight victims, here.

Lab Leaks

President Joe Biden directed US intelligence agencies to intensify their investigation into the origin of the coronavirus, including the possibility the virus escaped from a Chinese research lab. The move follows reports that a number of Wuhan Institute of Virology staff were hospitalized with COVID-19-like symptoms in November 2019, more than a month before China first reported the emergence of SARS-CoV-2.

A minority of officials and scientists have argued over the past year that the possibility of a lab leak, while unlikely, deserved scrutiny. Many noted the feasibility that a virus may have been isolated in the wild and was under study before subsequently escaping via lab accident. The theory had been largely dismissed over the past year, often being conflated ($$, NY Mag) with a conspiracy theory claiming the virus was an engineered bioweapon.

Those calling for further inquiry point to a number of factors, including that the origin of the virus was never pinpointed, and that China previously covered up the magnitude of its 2003 SARS outbreak.

See an in-depth review of both sides of the argument.

Amazon Buys MGM

Amazon announced yesterday it will acquire privately held MGM Studios for $8.45B as it looks to expand its footprint in the streaming content space. The move will let the company add more than 4,000 movies and 17,000 shows — including “Rocky” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” — to its Prime Video streaming service.

The acquisition is the company’s second largest after its purchase of Whole Foods in 2017 for $13.7B. The Prime Video service is available to more than 200 million subscribers and the acquisition puts Amazon in place to compete with other large streaming services such as Netflix and Disney+.

Separately, CEO Jeff Bezos announced yesterday he will formally step down as Amazon CEO July 5. Andy Jassy, CEO of Amazon web services, will take over the role.

The news comes one day after the attorney general in Washington, DC, announced an antitrust lawsuit against Amazon (see our previous write-up).

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5G IS HERE

We’re pretty sure you’ve heard: The latest iPhone (the iPhone 12) is 5G-enabled. Not only does this represent a massive technological leap, but it also suggests we’re approaching an inflection point in 5G’s popularity throughout the market.

Now, our friends at The Motley Fool love Apple and recognize what a remarkable business they’ve built. But Apple’s current market cap reflects the incredible extent to which they’ve grown in mobile dominance. It’s hard to triple in size when you’re already a $2T (yes, trillion) company.

There’s another company though, one that’s just a fraction of a percent of Apple’s size, which stands to grow massively with Apple’s iPhone 12 sales. In fact, they make a component so crucial, it’s expected to be included in every single iPhone 12 produced. Motley Fool Stock Advisor members can get the down-low on this company for free; sign up now to read the report.

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IN THE KNOW

Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

Brought to you by The Ascent

> World-famous Louvre Museum in Paris announces Laurence des Cars as its CEO and president, the first female leader of the museum in its 228-year history (More)

> The 74th Tony Awards sets Sept. 26 (7 pm ET, Paramount+, CBS) ceremony to run four hours and spread across two separate televised events (More) | Brad Pitt granted joint custody of children with Angelina Jolie after long court battle (More)

> Eric Carle, author and illustrator whose book “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” became one of the bestselling children’s books of all time, dies at 91 (More)

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Science & Technology

> Google to partner with healthcare giant HCA to develop algorithms to help doctors make medical decisions; project will rely on thousands of sets of anonymized patient data (More)

> Iran bans cryptocurrency mining until September after officials say it is partially responsible for near-daily blackouts across the country (More) | Visualizing cryptocurrency’s energy use (More)

> Light-activated neurons in cancer-prone mice can trigger both the growth and initiation of optic-nerve tumors; study provides evidence of the role of neuronal activity in cancer development (More)

Business & Markets

> Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell ordered to lower carbon emissions 45% by 2030 by Dutch court (More) | Shareholders of energy giant Exxon Mobil Corp. vote to replace two company board directors with individuals they believe are better suited to combat climate change (More)

> CEOs of the six largest US banks testified before Senate Banking Committee to discuss role of banks in America (More)

> Ford to invest up to $30B in electric vehicles by 2025, expects 40% of company’s sales to be electric by 2030; shares up 9% (More)

Politics & World Affairs

> Former adviser to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson makes series of claims alleging the government significantly mishandled the COVID-19 pandemic, leading to tens of thousands of added deaths (More)

> US health officials release data estimating that out of more than 100 million people vaccinated, 10,262 reinfections have been reported, or roughly 0.01%; of the breakthrough cases, 995 patients were hospitalized and 160 deaths were reported, primarily in those aged 80 and older (More)

> Former Sen. John Warner (R-VA) dies at age 94 of heart failure; Virginia’s longest-tenured Republican senator also served as secretary of the Navy and was actress Elizabeth Taylor’s sixth husband (More)

IN-DEPTH

Heat Listed

The Verge | Matt Stroud. In 2013, Chicago’s predictive policing algorithm led officials to identify Robert McDaniel as highly likely to be involved in gun violence — but not which side of the barrel he would be on. The results set in motion a tragic self-fulfilling prophecy. (Read)

The Leg at the Bottom of the Sea

Outside | David Kushner. Treasure-hunting scuba divers discover a below-the-knee prosthetic and, against the odds, return it to its rightful owner — an injured veteran. (Read)

5G SUPERCYCLE

In partnership with The Motley Fool

The experts at The Motley Fool are predicting the incredible power of 5G in the iPhone 12 to create a several-month sales supercycle. That is, the enhanced connections and functionality could drive over 230 million consumers to buy the new iPhone worldwide; that’s 50x more sales than the original iPhone!

And there’s a company 1/500th the size of Apple, which stands to gain every time someone buys an iPhone 12. It makes a critical component, and is expected to be involved in the production of every single iPhone 12. Find out more about this relatively unknown company — sign up for Motley Fool Stock Advisor to read the report.

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ETCETERA

How Americans feel about cancel culture.

San Francisco gets a supermoon close-up.

Find where raindrops end up, anywhere in the US.

The long-awaited “Friends” reunion premieres today.

America’s best natural swimming holes.

New York to raffle off college scholarships for teen vaccinations.

The hottest new photo app bans selfies.

Watch bees open a soda bottle.

The public demands John Steinbeck’s werewolf novel.

Clickbait: Toddler admitted into Mensa with an IQ of 146.

Historybook: Marine biologist and author Rachel Carson born (1907); HBD US statesman Henry Kissinger (1923); Ford ends manufacture of iconic Model T (1927); Golden Gate Bridge opens in California (1937); HBD Outkast rapper André 3000 (1975).

“Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life.”

  • Rachel Carson
  • San Jose, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, You Tube, Tik Toc, Nimbus Magazine, My Life Publications, “Shiavana”, Samuel Beckett Theater, Marty Martin, Metropolitan Magazine.

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robert massimi

robert massimi

3 Followers

Drama critic for Nimbus Magazine, Metropolitan Magazine and New York Lifestyles Magazine. Producer, editor and writer.