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Image copyright: The Yomiuri Shimbun via AP Images
Fukushima’s water storage tanks.

Here’s what you need to know

Japan is releasing contaminated Fukushima water into the sea. Despite objections from neighbors, including China, authorities insist the treated waste from the destroyed nuclear plant is safe.

“I’ll Tase you! I’ll Tase you! Taser! Taser! Taser!” she warned. But a Minnesota police officer then shot and killed Daunte Wright, who was Black, with her gun; protests continued for a second night.

Microsoft is buying AI voice recognition company Nuance. The $19.7 billion deal, which gives Microsoft a bigger healthcare presence, will be its second largest purchase, after LinkedIn.

Alibaba shares jumped after its fintech arm’s restructuring plans were announced. Ant Group is becoming a financial holding company, at the insistence of Chinese regulators.

India is speeding up vaccine approval. With cases surging, and procurement still a major obstacle, it will authorize shots that have already been given the nod by the WHO, the US, Europe, the UK, or Japan.

Twitter heads to Africa. The social media platform is hiring its first engineering team on the continent.

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Markets haiku: virtual toys get real

Image copyright: Reuters/Phil Noble
Kids can’t get enough.

Hasbro and Roblox:
Blasted to higher prices,
Landed behind couch
.

Roblox share prices closed 7% higher after news of their collaboration with Hasbro broke. The toymaker’s stock also saw a 1.2% boost.

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What to watch for

Image copyright: AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
Lloyd Austin.

US defense secretary Lloyd J. Austin III  begins his inaugural visit to Europe, having wrapped up meetings in Israel where he recommitted to a longstanding relationship between the two countries. Here’s a rundown of the stops scheduled.

🇩🇪  On Tuesday, Austin will meet with his German counterpart, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, to reinforce the value of their defense relationship.

🇧🇪  In Belgium, with NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg, Austin will discuss Russia, China, terrorism, climate change, and Covid-19.

🇬🇧  Austin will end his jaunt in London, where he’ll meet UK defense secretary Ben Wallace.


Charting Coinbase users

Crypto exchange Coinbase is scheduled to go public on April 14, putting a stamp of legitimacy on a company that could be valued at as much as $100 billion, according to some estimates.


The first risk Coinbase mentions in its S-1 is the whiplash inherent in prices for virtual assets. Interest in bitcoin and other digital assets blossoms when prices are climbing, and can crash when prices tank, and user numbers fluctuate accordingly. John Detrixhe lists out other fun facts from Coinbase’s filing.


What Texas can show Joe Biden about regulation

Image copyright: REUTERS/Nick Oxford
In Texas, oil companies are straddling taxpayers with millions of dollars in cleanup fees.

Orphaned oil and gas wells, many leaking methane gas and spouting pollutants, are poised to pop up around the US, threatening groundwater and air quality.

Targeted in US president Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan to the tune of $16 billion, the goal of plugging wells nationwide is both urgent and admirable.

Still, Texas’s recent energy woes during periods of unusually low temperatures have shown the dangers of lackadaisical regulation of oil companies. Money alone won’t put a cap on the problem, and could leave taxpayers on the hook for years to come.

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Surprising discoveries

Image copyright: Reuters/Amr Abdallah Dalsh
Written in the stars.

The stars aligned for Bhutan and vaccines. Doses arrived in January, but were administered only last month to coincide with key astrological dates.

“I did not follow the rules of lockdown so I am so sorry.” Tourists had to write an apology 500 times apiece after ignoring social-distancing measures in India.

A NASA intern stole $21 million worth of moon rocks. He wanted to have sex on them.

Met, American style. With the focus on the US’s fashion community, there will be two separate galas in September.

A Twitch streamer put himself up for sale as living art. He’ll grace your wall for five years, for a cool $5 million.


When you’re done hanging your new art, check out our latest.

Image copyright: giphy