Happy Blockchain Week to you and yours. HTC helped kick off this important national holiday by announcing the upcoming release of the HTC Exodus 1s. The latest version of the company’s intriguing blockchain phone shaves some of price off the Exodus 1 — which eventually sold for $699 when the company made it available in more traditional currency.
HTC’s being predictably cagey about exact pricing here, instead simply calling it “a more value-oriented version” of the original. Nor is the company discussing the actions it’s taking to reduce the cost here — though I’d expect much of them to be similar to those undergone by Google for the Pixel 3a, which was built by the former HTC team. There, most of the hits were to processing power and building material. Certainly the delightfully gimmicky transparent rear was a nice touch on the Exodus 1.
Most interesting here is the motivation behind the price drop. Here’s HTC in the press release:
It will allow users in emerging economies, or those wanting to dip their toes into the crypto world for the first time, easier access to the technology with a more accessible price point. This will democratize access to crypto and blockchain technology and help its global proliferation and adoption. HTC will release further details on exact specification and cost over the coming months.
A grandiose vision, obviously, but I think there’s something to be said for the idea. Access to some blockchain technology is somewhat price-prohibitive. Even so. Many experts in the space agree that blockchain will be an important foundation for microtransactions going forward. The Exodus 1 wasn’t exactly a smash from the look of things, but this could be an interesting first step.
Another interesting bit in all of this is the opening of the SDK for Zion Vault, the Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) product vault the company introduced with the Exodus 1. HTC will be tossing it up on GitHub for developers. “We understand it takes a community to ensure strength and security,” the company says, “so it’s important to the Exodus team that our community has the best tools available to them.”
Unusual and abundant glassy spheres found packed within the beach sands near the Japanese city of Hiroshima are remnants of the 1945 atomic bomb explosion, according to new research.
On August 6, 1945, a U.S. B-29 bomber dropped an atomic bomb over Hiroshima. In an instant, some 80,000 people were killed. The explosion and ensuing firestorms razed an area measuring more than 4 square miles (10 square kilometers), damaging upwards of 90 percent of all the structures in the city.
But what goes up must eventually come down. New research published today in the science journal Anthropocene is “the first published record and description of fallout resulting from the destruction of an urban environment by atomic bombing,” according to the authors of the new paper. The works shows that the nearby beaches on the Motoujina Peninsula in Hiroshima Bay are surprisingly littered with this fallout debris up to a depth of around 4 inches (10 centimeters).
Described as “millimeter-sized, aerodynamically-shaped debris,” these particles included glass spheroids, glass filaments, and melted composite compounds. The debris is reminiscent of the spherical particles found in the ground layer associated with the meteor impact that triggered a mass extinction 66 million years ago, and also the particles found in the area where the U.S. first tested the atomic bomb, according to the paper’s lead author, geologist Mario Wannier. Unlike these particles, however, the ones found near Hiroshima were packed with materials such as iron, steel, and rubber.
“In the surprise of finding these particles, the big question for me was: You have a city, and a minute later you have no city. There was the question of: ‘Where is the city—where is the material?’ It is a trove to have discovered these particles. It is an incredible story,” Wannier said in a Berkeley Lab statement.
Back in 2015, Wannier was sifting through particles of sand he had pulled from a beach just outside the city of Hiroshima. He was looking for marine life, but the weird glassy spheres in the mixture reminded him of the particles found in sediment samples from the 66-million-year-old Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) time period. The glassy spheres were between 0.5 millimeters to 1 millimeter in diameter. Some were fused together, and others were shaped like a teardrop. But unlike the spheroids pulled from the K-Pg sediment, these particles contained a surprising diversity of materials coated in multiple layers of silica. Intrigued, Wannier returned to the area to collect more beach samples.
In each kilogram of sand taken from Motoujina Peninsula beach, Wannier and his University of California, Berkeley colleagues found that spheroids and other unusual glass particles made up 0.6 to 2.5 percent of the total sample. Extrapolating from this, that means each square kilometer of beach down to a depth of around 10 centimeters contains 2,300 to 3,100 tons of these particles. That is, the stuff that once made up the city of Hiroshima.
Using both conventional and scanning electron microscopes, and with the help of UC Berkeley mineralogist Rudy Wenk, the researchers detected six distinct morphological types of particles, ranging from clear glass to rubber-like substances. The team found evidence of aluminum, silicon, calcium, carbon, and oxygen, and also traces of building materials, such as pure iron and steel. The composition of this debris is consistent with materials that were common in Hiroshima at the time, including concrete, marble, stainless steel, and rubber.
These particles formed in extreme conditions, in which temperatures reached 3,330 degrees Fahrenheit (1,830 degrees Celsius), according to the research. The tremendous explosion turned ground materials into liquid, blasting the melted material into the sky. Once at a high elevation, the various particles smashed into each other, resulting in the complex agglomerations observed by the researchers.
The authors of the new study admitted that some of this debris could have been caused by other processes, such as a fire at a nearby Mazda plant in 2004 and a local site where fireworks are displayed annually. That said, “no alternative scenario to the A-bomb explosion can provide a coherent explanation for all our observations,” the authors noted in the new study, concluding that:
This study interprets the large volumes of fallout debris generated under extreme temperature conditions as products of the Hiroshima August 6th, 1945 atomic bomb aerial detonation. The chemical composition of the melt debris provides clues to their origin, particularly with regard to city building materials. This study is the first published record and description of fallout resulting from the destruction of an urban environment by atomic bombing.
As noted, similar spheroids were found at the Trinity test site in New Mexico. But these glasses, dubbed trinitite, lacked the chemical compounds found in the samples taken near Hiroshima. Accordingly, the authors of the new study have dubbed the new material “Hiroshimaites” on account of its distinctive and diverse chemical composition.
Looking ahead, the researchers would like to explore the soils near Nagasaki to determine if similar particles exist there.
You’re not a proper homeowner until you’ve got a few stacks of half-used paint cans stashed in a dark corner of your basement, attic or shed. A few were leftover from when you threw a fresh coat on the walls before you moved in, maybe one from that time you remodeled the bathroom, even a few hand-me-downs from the previous owner.
Some of these you’ll want hang on to. It’s always good to keep a little extra wall and door paint around for when you inevitably need to do a some touching-up. But some is probably already expired and others (what were you thinking with that dark purple??) are just gathering dust until their ultimate demise.
How to tell if paint has expired
Paint doesn’t last forever (properly stored oil-based paints last up to 15 years; 10 years for latex). You can first check whether your paint is still good with the sniff test: Paint that has expired will have a strong rancid smell to it.
You’ll also need to determine whether the paint particles have permanently separated from the solvent by giving it a good mix (if a thin skin of hardened paint has formed over the top, remove that before you start mixing). If the paint blends back together smoothly into one consistent color, you should be good-to-go. If you’re still not sure, brush a bit of it onto a piece of newspaper or cardboard to see whether it goes on smoothly.
If your paint is expired, you’ll want to dispose of it, so skip ahead to that section below. But if the paint is still usable—you just simply have no use for it—consider donating it to someone who does.
Where to donate it
If you are looking to donate (non-expired) paint, make sure to first check whether an organization wants or needs it before you start lugging cans around town. Many non-profits, including Goodwill, do not accept leftover paint for donation. But there are a few options you can look into if you’d rather donate than dispose:
Your local Habitat for Humanity ReStore may offer latex paint recycling. The paint is collected by the crew, mixed and resold at the ReStore, which sells new and used building supplies to benefit the organization. Check first to see whether your local branch offers this program; paint donations may be accepted by appointment only.
A local scouts troop or community organization that works with kids may have a use for excess paint, depending on the types of projects they have coming up. High school drama clubs, in particular, often need paint for sets and scenery.
Any organization that is looking to remodel their facilities on the cheap, such as a shelter, church, animal rescue facility or local Boys & Girls Club maybe have a use for your excess paint. A little bit left in the bottom of the can won’t go far for a job like this, but if you’ve got a substantial amount, they might be able to use it to spruce up a room.
How to dispose of latex paint
If no one wants your paint (or it’s expired), it’s time to dispose of it properly. Before you do anything, check your local municipality’s regulations regarding paint disposal. In some areas, you will need to take latex paint to an approved drop-off location; in other areas, you are permitted to dry it out and dispose of it yourself. You might be able to find a local paint recycler, such as PaintCare, or you can search Earth911 for a hazardous waste drop-off facility in your area.
If you’re drying it out yourself and there is only a small amount of paint left in the can, popping off the lid and leaving it open in the sun for a while might do the trick. If there’s too much for the sun to handle, add cat litter, newspaper, sand or sawdust to absorb and dry out the paint.
For a larger quantity, line a cardboard box with a garbage bag, dump the paint inside and mix with the absorbent material.
To test whether the paint is dry, try plunging a tool, such as a screwdriver, into the paint. If it doesn’t penetrate the surface, your paint is dry. You can now safely throw it away in the trash.
How to dispose of oil-based paint
Oil-based paint is considered hazardous household material and must be disposed of either through a government program or a hazardous waste vendor. Your county might host hazardous household waste collection events sporadically throughout the year, and your state’s Department of Environmental Conservation website likely has a list of upcoming collection programs.
Whatever you do: Do not, do not, DO NOT pour any liquid paint down drains or into the trash.
Concrete is the most widely used material in the world: You see it in the streets you move through, and it might line your home or apartment. Globally, around 27 billion metric tons of concrete are produced each year.
But making cement–the mineral compound that constitutes the most crucial ingredient of concrete–is an extremely carbon-intensive process. It’s produced in factories with massive kilns where raw materials, like limestone, clay, and shale, are heated to temperatures up to 1550 degrees Celsius, then ground into a powder. Heating the cement minerals to such high temperatures poses a sustainability concern, says Kemal Celik, professor of civil engineering at New York University Abu Dhabi and the director of the Advanced Materials and Building Efficiency Research (AMBER) Laboratory. Producing cement accounts for around 7% of global CO2 emissions.
This fact, Celik says, got him interested in finding a better way to make the material. He and his team already knew that magnesium oxide, a mineral found in salt deposits like lakes and salt flats, could be converted into a type of cement. In the United Arab Emirates, where Celik and his team work, they realized they could tap the over 70 operating desalination plants for access to brine left over from the process of purifying seawater, which would otherwise just be dumped back into the Gulf. Synthesizing the magnesium oxide in brine into a cement-like substance requires much less heat than making ordinary cement. And, Celik says, as magnesium oxide cement hardens over its lifetime, it absorbs carbon dioxide over time to gain strength, potentially making it a carbon-negative building material.
Celik and his team at AMBER have already conducted tests showing that it’s just as strong and adaptable as ordinary concrete. And, Celik says, this method of making cement from leftover brine provides a crucial outlet for the desalination industry, which is quickly expanding in places that struggle with access to potable water, but struggling to dispose of its briny waste in a way that doesn’t alter the salinity levels in nearby bodies of water, which can hurt the surrounding ecosystems. Ultimately, the briny cement Celik and his team are advancing could be a way for the building industry to lower its associated emissions, both by reducing the amount of carbon needed to produce the material, and by the material over time pulling excess carbon from the atmosphere.
An F-16 fighter jet that took off from March Air Reserve Base in California crashed into the roof of a warehouse building and injured several people on Thursday afternoon.
Capt. Fernando Herrera at Cal Fire told KABC-TV that 12 people at the warehouse had to be treated on the scene because of exposure to the debris after the crash.
The aircraft originally took off from March Air Reserve Base for a training exercise and crashed at the end of a runway. The pilot, who was the only person board, ejected safely on base and deployed a parachute, according to KABC. The pilot is a member of the 144th Fighter Wing based in Fresno, California, reportedly had little to no injuries.
The warehouse’s sprinkler system was activated and poured water at the scene of the crash.
“It was almost to the point where I had to cover my ears, and next thing you know I just hear this explosion,” Daniel Gallegos, a witness at the scene, said to KABC. “I turn around to the back of the building and I just seen a burst of flames and just the ceiling start falling through every part of the building.”
A video from one witnesses showed the damage in the warehouse:
Riverside Deputy Fire Chief Timothy Holliday said the aircraft was carrying ordnance. A hazardous-material crew was deployed to the scene. Fire department officials remained on scene Thursday evening.
One major — and somewhat unexpected — theme at Microsoft’s Build developer conference this week is autonomous robots. After acquiring AI startup Bonsai, which specialized in reinforcement learning for autonomous systems, the company today announced the limited preview of a new Azure-based platform that is partially built on this acquisition and that will help developers train the models necessary to power these autonomous physical systems.
“Machines have been progressing on a path from being completely manual to having a fixed automated function to becoming intelligent where they can actually deal with real-world situations themselves,” said Gurdeep Pall, Microsoft vice president for Business AI. “We want to help accelerate that journey, without requiring our customers to have an army of AI experts.”
This new platform combines Microsoft’s tools for machine teaching and machine learning with simulation tools like Microsoft’s own AirSim or third-party simulators for training the models in a realistic but safe environment, and a number of the company’s IoT services and its open-source Robot Operating System.
In preparing for today’s launch, Microsoft worked with customers like Toyota Material Handling to develop an intelligent and autonomous forklift, for example, as well as Sarcos, which builds a robot for remote visual inspections that are either unreachable or too dangerous for humans. Typically, Sarcos’ robot is remotely controlled by an operator. After working with Microsoft, the company built a system that allows the robot to autonomously traverse obstacles, climb stairs and climb up metallic walls. What’s important here, though, is that there is still a human operator in the loop, but because the robot can sense its surroundings and move autonomously, operators can focus on what they are seeing instead of having to deal with the mechanics of steering the robot.
“We are looking to offload the tasks that can be automated — how does the robot climb a stair? How does it move around an obstacle? — so the operator can focus on the more important parts of the job,” said Kristi Martindale, the executive vice president and chief marketing officer for Sarcos. “The human is still there to say, ‘No you actually want to go to that obstacle over there because maybe that obstacle is a person who is hurt.’ ”
Bonsai CEO Mark Hammond echoed this: “In any sort of operation where you have a mechanical system that interacts with the physical world, you can probably make it smarter and more autonomous. But keeping people in the loop is still very desirable, and the goal is really to increase the capabilities of what those humans can do.”
Although robots are a flashy use case, Microsoft is also looking at more pedestrian use cases like cooling and heating systems that autonomously react to temperature changes.
It’s been a long night at VivaTech. The building hosted a very special competition — the TechCrunch Hackathon in Paris.
Hundreds of engineers and designers got together to come up with something cool, something neat, something awesome. The only condition was that they only had 36 hours to work on their projects. Some of them were participating in our event for the first time, while others were regulars. Some of them slept on the floor in a corner, while others drank too much Red Bull.
We could all feel the excitement in the air when the 64 teams took the stage to present a one-minute demo to impress fellow coders and our judges. But only one team could take home the grand prize and €5,000. So, without further ado, meet the TechCrunch Hackathon winner.
Current mining operations lack transparency and clarity in the way they are monitored. In order to understand how a material went from initial discovery in the mine to end product, a new tool is necessary to monitor operations. Myneral.me offers an all-encompassing platform for the metal and mining sector that showcases CSR to both industry partners and end users. Find out more on Myneral.me.
Runner-Up #1: Vyta
Vyta takes patient information and helps doctors understand which patient needs to be treated first. A simple tool like this could make things smoother for everyone at the emergency room and improve treatments.
Runner-Up #2: Scrub
SCRUB = SCRUM + BUGS. Easily track your errors across applications and fix them using our algorithmic suggestions and code samples. Our open-source bug tracker automagically collects all errors for you. Find out more on GitHub.
Runner-Up #3: Chiche
Finding the future upcoming brand depends on the set of data you are using to detect it. First, they do a simple quantification of the most famous brands on social medias to identify three newcomers. Second, they use Galerie Lafayette’s website as a personal shopping tool to propose customers the most adequate product within the three newcomers.
Dr. Aurélie Jean has been working for more than 10 years as a research scientist and an entrepreneur in computational sciences, applied to engineering, medicine, education, economy, finance and journalism. In the past, Aurélie worked at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and at Bloomberg. Today, Aurélie works and lives between USA and France to run In Silico Veritas, a consulting agency in analytics and computer simulations. Aurélie is an advisor at the Boston Consulting Group and an external collaborator for The Ministry of Education of France. Aurélie is also a science editorial contributor for Le Point, teaches algorithms in universities and conducts research.
Julien Meraud has a solid track record in e-commerce after serving international companies for several years, including eBay, PriceMinister and Rakuten. Before joining Doctolib, Julien was CMO of Rakuten Spain, where he improved brand online acquisition, retention, promotions and campaigns. Julien joined Doctolib at the very beginning (2014), becoming the company’s first CMO and quickly holding CPO functions additionally. At Doctolib, Julien also leads Strategy teams that are responsible for identifying and sizing Doctolib’s potential new markets. Julien has a Master’s degree in Marketing, Statistics and Economics from ENSAI and a specialized Master in Marketing Management from ESSEC Business School.
Laurent Perrin is the co-founder and CTO of Front, which is reinventing email for teams. Front serves more than 5,000 companies and has raised $79 million in venture funding from investors such as Sequoia Capital, DFJ and Uncork Capital. Prior to Front, Laurent was a senior engineer at various startups and helped design scalable real-time systems. He holds a Master’s in Computer Science from École Polytechnique and Télécom ParisTech.
Neesha Tambe is the head of Startup Battlefield, TechCrunch’s global startup launch competition. In this role she sources, recruits and vets thousands of early-stage startups per year while training and coaching top-tier startups to launch in the infamous Startup Battlefield competition. Additionally, she pioneered the concept and launched CrunchMatch, the networking program at TechCrunch events that has facilitated thousands of connections between founders, investors and the startup community at-large. Prior to her work with TechCrunch, Neesha ran the Sustainable Brands’ Innovation Open — a startup competition for shared value and sustainability-focused startups with judges from Fortune 50 companies.
Renaud Visage is the technical co-founder of San Francisco-based Eventbrite (NYSE: EB), the globally leading event technology platform that went public in September 2018. Renaud is also an angel investor, guiding founders that are solving challenging technical problems in realizing their global ambitions, and he works closely with seed VC firm Point Nine Capital as a board partner, representing the fund on the board of several of their portfolio companies. Renaud also serves on the board of ShareIT, the Paris-based tech for good acceleration program launched in collaboration with Ashoka, and is an advisor to the French impact investing fund, Ring for Good. In 2014, Renaud was included in Wired UK’s Top 100 digital influencers in Europe.
In addition to our judges, here’s the hackmaster who was the MC for the event:
Romain Dillet is a senior writer at TechCrunch. Originally from France, Romain attended EMLYON Business School, a leading French business school specialized in entrepreneurship. He covers many things, from mobile apps with great design to privacy, security, fintech, Apple, AI and complex tech achievements. He also speaks at major tech conferences. He likes pop culture more than anything in the world. He now lives in Paris when he’s not on the road. He used to live in New York and loved it.
Google today announced the first preview of Jetpack Compose, a new open-source UI toolkit for Kotlin developers who want to use a reactive programming model similar to React Native and Vue.js.
Jetpack Compose is an unbundled toolkit that is part of Google’s overall Android Jetpack set of software components for Android developers, but there is no requirement to use any other Jetpack components. With Jetpack Compose, Google is essentially bringing the UI-as-code philosophy to Android development. Compose’s UI components are fully declarative and allow developers to create layouts by simply describing what the UI should look like in their code. The Compose framework will handle all the gory details of UI optimization for the developer.
Developers can mix and match the Jetpack Compose APIs and view those based on Android’s native APIs. Out of the box, Jetpack Compose also natively supports Google’s Material Design.
As part of today’s overall Jetpack update, Google also is launching a number of new Jetpack components and features. These range from support for building apps for Android for Cars and Android Auto to an Enterprise library for making it easier to integrate apps with Enterprise Mobility Management solutions and built-in benchmarking tools
The standout feature, though, is probably CameraX, a new library that allows developers to build camera-centric features and applications that gives developers access to essentially the same features as the native Android camera app.
Google’s Flutter UI toolkit for cross-platform development may only be two years old, but it has quickly become the framework of choice for many developers. Until now, though, ‘cross-platform’ only referred to Android and iOS. Late last year, Google announced that it would also take flutter beyond mobile and to the web. Today, at its I/O developer conference, it’s doing exactly that with the launch of the first technical preview of Flutter for the web
Google also today announced that Flutter developers will soon be able to target macOS, Windows and Linux and that the company itself is already using the framework to power some experiences on the Google Home Hub as it looks to bring Flutter to more embedded devices, too.
“We built Flutter from the ground up to be this beautiful, fast, productive, open-source toolkit for building tailored experiences, originally for mobile,” Google’s group product manager for Flutter, Tim Sneath, told me. “The big news for this week is that we are finally opening Flutter up beyond just mobile to really lean into our broader vision for Flutter as our general-purpose, portable UI toolkit for mobile, we, embedded and desktop.”
“The challenge is really how to bring it down to the client and create these rich Flutter-based experiences that can take advantage of the standards-based web,” he said. Going to the web also means addressing basic things like resizable windows, but also support for interacting with keyboards and mice.
Those same requirements also apply to the desktop, of course, where the code isn’t quite production-ready yet. Developers, however, can now start experimenting with these features. The team says that the macOS version is currently the most mature, though if you are brave enough, you can try building for Windows and Linux, too.
The team also wanted to build this in a way that there will be one Flutter code base and that there would be no need to fork the framework or the applications that developers build on top of it to support these different platforms. “Our expectation is that we will be able to deliver one framework for all of these places,” said Sneath and stressed that we’re talking about native code, even on the desktop, not a web app that pretends to be a desktop app.
Sneath showed me a demo of the New York Times puzzle app on mobile and the web and the experience was identical. That’s the ideal scenario for Flutter developers, of course.
With today’s update, Google is also introducing a few new features to the core Flutter experience. These include new widgets for iOS and Google’s Material Design, support for Dart 2.3’s UI-as-code features and more. The Flutter team also announced an ML Kit Custom Image Classifier for Flutter to help developers build image classification workflows into their apps. “You can collect training data using the phone’s camera, invite others to contribute to your datasets, trigger model training, and use trained models, all from the same app,” the team writes in today’s announcement.
Looking ahead, the team plans to introduce improved support for text selection and copy/paste, support for plugins and out-of-the box support for new technologies like Progressive Web Apps.
Scientists created a variant of the E. coli bacteria with an entirely synthetic genome, according to a new paper.
Building and replacing the large entire genome yet was just one goal of the team from the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, UK. They hoped that the resulting bacteria would use a reduced number of possible DNA base pair combinations in order to produce the 20 amino acids. In the future, the now-obsolete sequences might be used to produce never-before-seen amino acids and proteins.
The thrust of the paper wasn’t just to rebuild a bacteria’s genetic code, but to simplify redundancies in order to have more genetic code to work with to create custom genomes. Genetic code is written in four letters: A, T, C, and G, which represent the molecules adenine, thymine, cytosine, and guanine. These nucleotides can arrange into 64 three-letter “codons,” most of which correspond to an amino acid, the building blocks of the proteins that allow life to function. All but two of the amino acids are encoded by multiple synonymous codons. The researchers wanted to see if they could rewrite the E. coli bacteria’s genome with fewer codons, like rewriting the dictionary but representing all hard “k” sounds with only the letter k, instead of sometimes using c or q as the English language does.
Producing the genome required first drafting it. The researchers designed a genome where they replaced two codons that encode the amino acid serine with synonyms, and did the same with the stop codon, which tells cellular functions when to stop reading a strand of DNA while building a protein. Then, the researchers built their DNA using the various lab techniques already employed in synthetic biology. Finally, they had to replace the bacteria’s genetic material with the synthetic DNA. They couldn’t just transfer it all over—they had to break their genome into pieces, slowly transplanting bit by bit into living bacteria until they had replaced the entire E. coli genome, according to the paper published in Nature.
The E. coli survived, though they grew slower and were longer, according to New York Times reporting. But the new E. coli cells relied on only 61, rather than 64 total codons.
It was a tour de force, one scientist told Gizmodo. “For those of us who work in synthetic genomics, it’s the headline, most exciting thing; they synthesized, built, and showed that a 4-million-base-pair synthetic genome could work,” Tom Ellis, director of the Center for Synthetic Biology at Imperial College London who reviewed the paper, told Gizmodo. “It’s more than anyone had done before.”
Science-fiction speculation aside, there are several potential uses of a synthetic genome like this. There are obvious biotechnological applications—removing the redundancies allows researchers extra codons to experiment with, potentially to develop new amino acids, proteins, and bacteria that can do new things. The codon swap is also a firewall against viruses that might try to hijack the cell, said Ellis. It’s a rapidly evolving field, and this is just one of several groups in the midst of performing these kinds of genome swaps.
The methods that the researchers used to swap the genome provide “a blueprint for future genome synthesis,” according to the paper. And next up, the researchers hope to figure out how much more they could streamline the E. coli genome, as well as what they can do with the codons that they’ve freed up.