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Maurizio Pesce / Creative Commons

Workers with skills in virtual reality were the hottest thing on the U.S. job market in the last quarter, even though the technology has yet to break into mainstream use, per Bloomberg's Isabel Gottlieb.

U.S. government data compiled by Upwork, the website matching free-lancers and employers, showed that company billings for VR projects surged 30 times over the second quarter last year. VR is starting from a small base — just 106 free-lancers listed it as a skill in the second quarter last year, compared with more than 2,500 in 2017 — but the growth in demand for VR workers suggests that companies see much potential ahead.

Artificial intelligence skills were big, too, holding three of the top 10 spots for the fastest-growing demanded skills. They were natural language processing at No. 2, neural networks at No. 5 and image processing at No. 8.

Go deeper

Biden confronts mounting humanitarian crisis at the border

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Pool/Getty Images     

Just over a month into his presidency, President Biden is staring down a mounting crisis at the border that could be just as bad as the ones faced by Barack Obama and Donald Trump, if not worse.

Why it matters: Immigration is an issue that can consume a presidency. It's intensely and poisonously partisan. It's complicated. And the lives and welfare of vulnerable children hang in the balance.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
47 mins ago - Economy & Business

The rise of vaccine passports

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Vaccine passports were touted early in the pandemic as an important piece of the plan to get people back to normal life. Now they’re becoming a reality.

Driving the news: CLEAR, the secure digital identity app that you see in airports around the world, and CommonPass, a health app that lets users securely access vaccination records and COVID test results, have joined forces.

"Vaccine tourism" stretches states' supplies

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Americans who are highly motivated to get vaccinated are traveling across state lines after hearing about larger vaccine supplies or loopholes in sign-up systems.

Why it matters: "Vaccine tourism" raises ethical and legal questions, and could worsen the racial socioeconomic and racial inequalities of the pandemic.