Beware of ugly buildings

Plus, twinkle twinkle little T Coronae Borealis, how I wonder what you are.
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The Futurist is your daily tech, cosmic, and science (both weird or otherwise) newsletter with articles and content curated just for you.

Unreleased preview of Microsoft’s OS/2 2.0 is a glimpse down a road not taken | Ars Technica

“The Microsoft-developed build of OS/2 2.0 bears only a passing resemblance to the 32-bit version of OS/2 2.0 that IBM finally shipped on its own in April 1992. [Software archaeologist] Neozeed has published a more thorough exploration of Microsoft's version, digging around in its guts and getting some early Windows software running (the ability to run DOS and Windows apps was simultaneously a selling point of OS/2 and a reason for developers not to create OS/2-specific apps, one of the things that helped to doom OS/2 in the end). It's a fascinating detail from a turning point in the history of the PC as we know it today.”

Flash forward more than 30 years, and Microsoft’s latest OS goes beyond running apps simultaneously; it’s the most integrated OS to date with top-notch encryption, accessibility, and productivity features. [Ad]

Total Wine - It’s time to grow up: You can do better than boxed wine [Partner]

There’s nothing like cheap booze. And no, we’re not talking about that boxed junk you drank in college (sorry not sorry for calling you out). We mean actual high-quality wines that are under $20. Check out Total Wines’ top reds, whites, and sparkling wines that are as delectable as they are affordable, and save $18 when you get all six. It’s time to grow up, pour yourself a glass, and put those “slap the bag” days behind you. Seriously. We mean it. [Ad]

The global danger of boring buildings | Wired

“Thomas Heatherwick is on a mission. The world’s architects and city planners need to be driven to stop filling cities with dull buildings, the designer and founder of Heatherwick Studio believes. The health of the planet—and its population—may be at stake. If planners keep sanctioning buildings that nobody loves, then we run the risk of creating a glut of structures that in the not-too-distant future will be wastefully torn down, as there will be no one to advocate for them. But create buildings that spark joy, build attachment, and break the mold, and we could create structures that will be maintained for centuries.”

You’ll soon be able to see a ‘new’ star in the night sky | Lifehacker

“There’s a ‘new’ star coming to the sky in the next few months, and it should be visible to the naked eye. Between now and September, the normally-so-dim-you-can't-see-it star T Coronae Borealis will explode into view, making it look as if a new star has suddenly appeared in the Corona Borealis, or Northern Crown, constellation. Scientists predict T Coronae Borealis will be as bright as the North Star, so you shouldn’t need binoculars or a telescope to see it, and it will remain in the sky for as long as a week before fading once again into cosmic obscurity.”

Dice Cream - You can now invest in ice cream, and it’s about as sweet as it sounds [Partner]

The latest investment opportunity for robotics geeks and ice cream lovers alike, Dice Cream is a robotic arm that serves ice cream in cube form. Before you get excited, you won’t see it out in the field just yet; the autonomous bot is in the prototype stage, but can be a reality in the next year with your investment. With shares starting at just $250, it’s a pretty lucrative way to stake your claim in a revolutionary robotics advancement while becoming a part of the future of ice cream. And seriously, who doesn't love ice cream? [Ad]

The case for four-color traffic signals | New Atlas

“The emergence of autonomous vehicles (AV) has introduced a new twist. ... A team of researchers from North Carolina State University have suggested that once a critical number of AVs are on the road, a fourth, white traffic signal light can be added to the traditional trio. Their computer model worked very well at speeding up moving through intersections, but there was room for improvement. ‘Our earlier work introduced the idea of a fourth traffic signal called a “white phase,” which taps into the computing power of autonomous vehicles in order to expedite traffic at intersections – but we had not yet incorporated what this concept would mean for pedestrians,’ says Ali Hajbabaie, an associate professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering at North Carolina State University.”

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