Hillary’s convention, Japan’s export woes, cuteness studies

Good morning, Quartz readers!


The US Democratic National Convention kicks off. First lady Michelle Obama and senator Bernie Sanders will both give speeches at the convention in Philadelphia, where the first day will carry a “United Together” theme. Later this week Michael Bloomberg will speak, endorsing presumptive nominee Hillary Clinton.

The Arab League summit meets in Mauritania. The organization, which brings together over 20 Arab countries, will focus on terrorism and national security. Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sissi and King Salman of Saudi Arabia are both expected to attend, as will Sundanese president Omar al-Bashir, despite the warrant for his arrest issued by the International Criminal Court.

Verizon acquires Yahoo for $4.8 billion. The US wireless carrier has been expanding online content and advertising since last year’s AOL deal, and sees value in Yahoo’s billion users, even though other investors do not. The deal will be announced before markets open in New York.


The head of the Democratic National Committee resigned over embarrassing emails. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said she will leave her post as DNC chairwoman after the US Democratic party’s convention this week. Emails leaked on Friday suggest the party undermined Vermont senator Bernie Sanders’ campaign, while aiding Hillary Clinton’s—just as he had accused it of doing.

Japan reported its export numbers for June. Shipments fell 7.9% from a year earlier, the ninth consecutive drop, suggesting a still-tepid economic recovery. The strong yen is hurting many key Japanese companies, making their products less competitively priced overseas. The Bank of Japan will meet later this week to ponder more monetary stimulus.

Nintendo’s shares plunged after it warned Pokemon Go won’t boost earnings much. The struggling gaming giant has a hit with the smartphone game, but it warned late Friday the game will have a limited impact on its earnings. Shares fell as much as 18% early on Monday, after a big rally in the weeks following the game’s debut and runaway success.

An ISIL attack killed more than 80 people in Afghanistan.Suicide bombers struck a rally by mostly Shiite Muslims in the capital Kabul on Saturday, injuring hundreds in addition to the fatalities. ISIL described the assault, the nation’s deadliest since 2001, as a “martyrdom attack” on Shiites.


Olivia Goldhill on why scientific research in behavioral genetics still makes people feel uncomfortable: “Think of someone whose political ideology leads them to ignore and groundlessly reject science. Typically, this often describes those on the right of the political spectrum, where climate change, women’s reproductive health, and even evolution are routinely dismissed. But a massive and fast growing field in science—behavioral genetics—has a huge body of conclusive evidence that, at first reading, seems at odds with left-wing ideology.” Read more here.


Donald Trump is terrifyingly similar to Vladimir Putin. Even hismannerisms and body language suggest Trump offers an American version of the propaganda, fear, and hatred put forward by Putin.

Human-like robots merit more attention than robotic humans.Changes in our technology and environment are presenting us with constant stimulus and making us behave in an increasingly machine-like way.

Celebrity gossip isn’t all bad. In 2016, the world is drowning in misery and violence, and we need a break. Taylor Swift’s latest feud is the perfect escapism.


A 15-lb lobster was rescued from being served as dinner at a Florida restaurant. Larry, estimated to be between 60 and 110 years old, is now headed to the Maine State Aquarium.

The study of “cuteness” is an emerging academic filed. There are more than 100 publications in an online “cute studies” bibliography, which combines behavioral science, cultural studies, and biology.

Russia won’t be completely banned from the summer Olympics. Though its track and field team is banned, other Russian athletes can individually apply and, if they meet strict criteria, could be allowed to attend.

Birds are communicating with humans in Mozambique.Traditional Yao honey-hunters reward birds that show the way to honey with beeswax. And scientists have now noted inter-species communication between the two groups.

An 18-year-old has invented the “Swiss Army knife” of drones.He’s been flying drones since he was 12 years old, and wrote up awish list of drone functions before making his dream a reality.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, giant lobsters, and drug-free Russian athletes tohi@qz.com You can download our iPhone app or follow us on Twitterfor updates throughout the day.



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