AI’s get sniffy, Bitcoin’s price spike gets investigated and Antarctica gets rapidly smaller. Our weekly round-up of provoking thoughts, penetrating insights and digital curiosities.          

It’s melting

The Atlantic looks at the implications of a wide-ranging study of the rate at which Antarctic ice is melting. Published in Nature, the news is not good at all. The BBC also takes up the story.

Nosey artificial intelligence

The Independent looks into a new artificial intelligence system that can smell whether or not someone is sick, while, Quartz looks into why futurists in Ethiopia are betting AI will help drive development. The Harvard Business Review argues that before one starts looking to automate company processes, it is important to find ways to improve them in the first place.

See also: Fintech in Five: A conversation with Wolfe Research’s Yin Luo

The Economist discusses why it thinks the market for driverless cars will head towards monopoly. Elsewhere The Guardian takes a look at a new report by Thatcham Research and the Association of British Insurers, which says that drivers are being lulled into a false sense of security by the marketing of new driver assistance features.

Read more: ESG and the TMT sector – The challenges ahead

The king is dead. Long live the king.

The MIT Technology Review looks into evidence that the US government is seriously underestimating how much Americans rely on the gig economy, while Slate takes an opposite stance, examining new numbers from the US Bureau of Labour Statistics

Bloomberg delves into a rather retro trend taking over Silicon Valley’s Fintech firms – bank accounts. Digiday looks at how small direct-to-consumer firms are moving away from a Facebook-only advertising strategy. The New York Times reports that researchers now believe that a concentrated price manipulation may have accounted for at least half of last year’s increase in the price of Bitcoin.

And finally

The Financial Times continues its series on millennials with a focus on how they are changing the world’s most watched sporting event – the FIFA Football World Cup

See also: Everything you wanted to know about crypto assets but were afraid to ask