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Recode Daily: Meet Meltdown and Spectre, Intel microchip design flaws that put nearly all the world’s computers at risk

Plus, Spotify does IPO its own way, an unsparing inside look at Trump’s chaotic White House, and parking for gold.

Yui Mok / PA Images via Getty Images

Security researchers have discovered a design flaw that affects virtually all computer processors on the market — putting billions of devices at risk of attack. Two critical vulnerabilities found in Intel chips — dubbed Meltdown and Spectre— can let an attacker steal data from the memory of running apps. Intel’s microprocessors are used in more than 90 percent of the computer servers that underpin the internet and private business operations. [Zack Whittaker / ZDNet]

Spotify intends to go public this spring, and it’s taking the unusual, all-but-untested approach of a direct listing — meaning it will be traded as a public company without raising new cash. As part of its preparation for a Q1 IPO, the streaming music company cleared up a sticky $1 billion debt deal with the help of Chinese tech company Tencent. [Theodore Schleifer and Peter Kafka / Recode]

Chinese ride-hail company Didi Chuxing is spending around $600 million to acquire a rival Uber competitor in Brazil, its fastest-growing region. Almost exactly a year ago, Didi led a $100 million investment in 99, a Brazilian taxi- and private-car-hailing company. Didi’s many partnerships have helped it establish a global footprint. [Johana Bhuiyan / Recode]

Donald Trump didn’t want to be president. And there was a plan to lose the election. These are just two of the juicier chunks from “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” Michael Wolff’s forthcoming book revealing just about every embarrassing detail about Trump’s campaign and cobbled-together administration (the National Review advises approaching Wolff’s depiction with a grain of salt). How did Wolff get this kind of access? Look no further than Trump’s former chief strategist, Steve Bannon; in reaction yesterday, Trump says Bannon “lost his mind” when he was fired. [Michael Wolff / New York]

Trump is always going to be a big story — the media trend of 2017 was the “Trump bump,” a spike in both high-quality reporting and consumer interest in reading about the new president. But in 2018, Trump can’t be the only story. On the latest episode of Recode Media with Peter Kafka, New York Times media columnist Jim Rutenberg and Washington Post media reporter Sarah Ellison talk about what journalists are doing right — and what they’re still getting wrong. [Eric Johnson / Recode]

Top stories from Recode

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This is cool

Parking for gold: Welcome to the National Valet Olympics.

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