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The Rohingya women, Putin’s strategies, and eight other stories you might have missed

1. Apocalypse chow You’ve got the storms and the hurricanes. You’ve got the fires and the floods. And you’ve got a generalized (and not-unfounded) anxiety that 2017 has been coming for you—and that 2018 might be worse.

France is banning mobile phones in schools

On Sunday, France’s education minister announced that mobile phones will be banned from primary, junior, and middle schools, calling it a matter of “public health.” While phones are already prohibited in classrooms in France, starting in September 2018 students won’t be allowed to use them on breaks, at lunch, or between lessons either.

Paris is beyond fed up with Airbnb

The City of Love has lost any love for Airbnb. Paris is threatening to take home-sharing company Airbnb to court if it doesn’t take down hundreds of listings for apartments whose owners have failed to register with local authorities, AFP reports: Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s deputy in charge of housing, Ian Brossat, told AFP the city had written to five holiday rental sites—Airbnb, HomeAway, Paris Attitude, Sejourning and Windu—to demand they remove properties whose owners have defied the city’s new registration requirements.

This is the most devious advertisement

Advertising on the internet has always been a slightly nefarious game, with banner ads offering pills that doctors hate and “one weird trick” diets that somehow the US Food and Drug Administration doesn’t know about.

We’re sending sugar into space so astronauts can grow rock candy

Scientists at NASA have loaded three pounds of Domino and C&H sugar onto a SpaceX Dragon rocket scheduled to launch into space tomorrow (Dec.

Banned for more than three decades, cinemas will open again in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is re-opening itself to the world of cinema, lifting a ban on movie theaters that has been in place since the 1980s.

Bitcoin futures had a strong debut, and traders don’t expect the bubble to pop anytime soon

Bitcoin futures had a strong debut on Monday (Dec. 11), surging 26% to reach $18,850 on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE).

Former Facebook executive has sworn off social media because he doesn’t want to be “programmed”

While Facebook’s business is booming and the company continues to expand its tentacles to every corner of the internet, its early employees and investors are growing more and more vocal about the damage it has wrought among its users.

The man who solved a big puzzle about the tiniest particles in the universe

The theory of quantum mechanics supports the basis of modern technology, for everything from supercomputers and ultra-precise timekeeping to digital encryption.

Why Donald Trump wants to go back to the moon

Today Donald Trump will sign Space Policy Directive 1, an order to send humans back to the moon and beyond.

After cheating to sell diesels, Volkswagen wants to end diesel tax breaks

In an about-face that’s taking the industry by surprise, Volkswagen chief executive Matthias Müller told business daily Handelsblatt (paywalled link in German) that the German government needs to start phasing out its diesel fuel subsidies.

Bookstores may be dying, but fashion brands are giving them new life

The future of brick-and-mortar bookstores has been in peril for at least a decade. But whether you’re actually shopping for a book or not, you might actually find yourself wandering into a bookstore by accident.

Trump’s budget cuts could make New York City commuters even more vulnerable to attacks

New York is more reliant on public transportation than other US cities and the attempted attack in the Port Authority this morning highlights the city’s vulnerability, security experts say.

American Express won’t make you sign for your purchases after April

American Express has announced that the ancient way of proving authenticity—the signature—won’t be a part of your purchase process come April, matching similar moves by rivals such as Mastercard and Discover.

Microsoft is adding a cricket oval to its US campus in a nod to its south Asian workers

Cricket balls, cricket rules, cricket players—all feature prominently in Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s recent book Hit Refresh.

The New Yorker has cracked the code for literary virality with its short story, “Cat Person”

This post contains spoilers to Kristen Roupenian’s “Cat Person.” The top story today on isn’t a deeply researched investigation on corrupt men, or 6,000 words on an inevitable natural disaster.

A breakthrough study could lead to synthetic DNA therapies for incurable genetic diseases

Huntington’s disease progressively robs you of your mental and physical faculties. Symptoms like depression and uncontrollable movements start between the ages of 30 and 40, and get progressively worse over the next 10 to 20 years.

There are only 450 North Atlantic right whales left and 17 died in 2017

Whales and humans have long had a complicated relationship. For centuries, we hunted the massive sea creatures for their oil and meat until they were almost extinct.

Apple has bought Shazam

After initial reports on Friday that Apple was considering purchasing the music discovery app Shazam, the company confirmed on Dec.

Airbnb is replacing the guest book with augmented reality

Airbnb announced today (Dec.11) that it’s experimenting with augmented- and virtual-reality technologies to enhance customers’ travel experiences.