Pluto flyby and the weekly roundup in tech and retail

News and commentaries

This week, space exploration was in the forefront as NASA’s New Horizons performed its Pluto flyby and the images being sent back are far from finished. Because of the distance and amount of data that was gathered, it will take 16 months for all the data to be sent back to Earth. It’s definitely a gift that will keep on giving. The New York Times have compiled some images of Pluto here but if you want to go straight to the source, NASA is a also a great resource. Hopefully the excitement over Pluto will spill over to more plans for future space exploration. You might wonder though, just how much was it all worth? Here’s an infographic that could help you, courtesy of Scienceogram.org. It’s a little controversial to compare it to the US defense spending but I thought this was interesting enough to share:

For an explanation of the cost breakdown, you can read the post here.

Here are this week’s most relevant news in tech and retail:

In tech:

  1. Nintendo chief executive Satoru Iwata died Saturday in Kyoto, Japan; thousands gather at his funeral
  2. Ellen Pao exits Reddit after a tumultuous week, co-founder and original CEO Steve Huffman takes over
  3. Google earnings: Share price crosses $700 as revenue growth beats expectations; viewing time on YouTube grew by 60% in the second quarter compared to the year prior
  4. Netflix stock jumped 12% following Q2 report, company reports strong subscriber numbers
  5. IBM’s Watson supercomputer learns Arabic; other languages include English, Japanese, Spanish, and Brazilian Portuguese

    In retail:

  1. Amazon’s Prime Day was more successful than Black Friday sales, could become an annual event; other retailers follow suit
  2. eBay confirms sale of its enterprise unit for $925 million to a consortium led by private-equity firm Permira
  3. J. Crew Group Inc. launches a new budget-friendly brand J. Crew Mercantile; first store to open in Dallas in late July
  4. Facebook tests online stores again that will allow small to medium-sized businesses to sell through Facebook pages
  5. Japan’s Rakuten buys virtual fitting room startup Fits.Me for an undisclosed amount
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