Good morning, Quartz readers!
What to watch for today and over the weekend
A treaty that helped end the Cold War is dead. US president Donald Trump’s administration announced its intention to exit the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty in February, and the six month withdrawal period ends today. The treaty, which was signed by both the US and the then–Soviet Union in 1987, banned certain nuclear and conventional ground-launched missiles.
Puerto Rico governor Ricardo Roselló steps down. And no one knows who will take his place. Would-be successor Wanda Vázquez has already passed on the job, and the newly elevated former congressman Pedro Pierluisi has found an enemy in senate president Thomas Rivera Schatz, who wants to run for governor himself.
Singapore gets a new opposition party. 79-year-old Tan Cheng Bock has received the backing of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s estranged brother Lee Hsien Yang for his new Progress Singapore Party. Local media reports that tickets to the launch event sold out within minutes.
Have an IPA for IBD. Founded in 2007, International Beer Day on Aug. 2 has become a growing global celebration of suds. These days there’s a host of apps and websites for everyone from Jane Six-Pack to high-gravity hopheads.
While you were sleeping
New China tariffs. Trump announced via tweet that he plans to impose fresh tariffs of 10% on another $300 billion of Chinese goods starting Sept. 1—just in time for new trade talks between the nations.
The Federal Trade Commission is taking another swing at Facebook. The FTC is investigating whether Facebook’s acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp were carried out in order to neutralize the threat posed by the rival apps. The news broke just one week after the company and agency reached a $5 billion settlement over privacy violations.
Small tech, big implications. A leaked image of the new Samsung Galaxy Note’s 3.5mm to USB-C adapter heavily implies that the Korean tech giant has abandoned headphone jacks for its flagship phones. Meanwhile, Intel revealed the first set of processors based on its new Ice Lake architecture, which should give the next generation of ultraportable laptops a significant performance boost.
Puzzling river hot spot was a North Korean defector. A mysterious thermal reading in the Imjin river turned out to be a rare defection by a North Korean soldier. This was the first time since 2010 that a North Korean citizen has defected using this body of water.
Ninja quit Twitch. Tyler “Ninja” Blevins—the world’s most famous Fortnite player—announced that he’s leaving his wildly popular Twitch channel (owned by Amazon) for its Microsoft-owned rival Mixer.
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Jake Schwartz is the co-founder and CEO of General Assembly, a global education start-up with 20 campuses and 50,000 alumni worldwide. In an exclusive interview with Quartz editor-in-chief Kevin Delaney, Schwartz discusses how higher education institutions have been normalized as luxury brands; why the lines on your resume are actually “imperfect proxies” for job preparedness; and what the alternatives might look like.
After over 500 years of trying, man finally made the Arctic a shipping route. And we did it through climate change. While the Northwest and Northeast Passages are unlikely to surpass routes through the Suez and Panama Canals, they’re getting busier as Arctic routes go ice-free more often. And it’s not exactly going to thaw diplomatic relations. Explore the region at the Quartz Obsession.
Matters of debate
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Higher plus-size pricing is bad form. It’s also bad business—even luxury fashion brands are realizing that it pays to cater to this important cohort of shoppers.
The Impossible Whopper isn’t really vegan. Burger King says even though its plant-based patty is cooked next to meat, it still achieves the same purpose.
Artificial intelligence can own patents. The argument that only humans can innovate is wildly outdated.
Action stars don’t want to lose fights.The males of Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw wanted equal “muscle time”, so a complicated fairness system was born.
Space stars don’t want to lose speed. One, at least, is zooming away from the center of the Milky Way at 1,000 miles per second.
Labs need dirtier mice. By inbreeding mice in sanitized labs, we’ve created test subjects without normal ranges of microbes.
Workout clothes could soon smell better than you do. A new fabric puts out a citronella scent when it comes into contact with sweat.
AI can spot queue-jumpers. Facial recognition technology can now give bartenders an idea of who got to the bar first.
Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, mouse bacteria, and runaway stars to email@example.com. Join the next chapter of Quartz by downloading our app and becoming a member. Today’s Daily Brief was written and edited by Susan Howson and Max Lockie.