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Google parent Alphabet looks to restore cell service in Puerto Rico with Project Loon balloons | TechCrunch
The FCC has given approval for Google parent company, Alphabet, to help Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands regain wireless service. The company will attempt to enable LTE connectivity using its high-flying Project Loon balloons.
google  connectivity  csr  news-event 
5 days ago by dancall
Gun-packing Instagram star Dan Bilzerian mocked for fleeing Las Vegas shooting - The Washington Post
Whether Bilzerian really is the man he portrays himself to be has been debated ever since he first went viral, four years before the shooting, also in Las Vegas.
news-event  instagram  fail 
14 days ago by dancall
No, a chatbot can’t automatically sue Equifax for $25,000 | TechCrunch
In reality, this “fully automated” chatbot is asking for very basic personal information, like your address, and populating it into a PDF that you can use to start the process of taking Equifax to small claims court. The form is also pre-populated with Equifax’s address and the local state agent’s address, so I guess that saves you a few minutes of googling.
After you’re done using the chatbot you’re still going to need to turn in your form and pay a fee (usually in person) and, more importantly, actually show up to court on a designated day and argue your case in front of a judge. While the chatbot also fills in a few words of reasoning — on the New York form it fills in that “Equifax was negligent under Code § 1411 in revealing my data” — this is meaningless as you’re still going to need to argue your case in your own words.
news-event  legal  bots  fail 
4 weeks ago by dancall
How did Tesla make some of its cars travel further during Hurricane Irma? | Technology | The Guardian
Tesla drivers who fled Hurricane Irma last weekend received an unexpected lesson in modern consumer economics along the way. As they sat on choked highways, some of the electric-car giant’s more keenly priced models suddenly gained an extra 30 or so miles in range thanks to a silent free upgrade.

The move, confirmed by Tesla, followed the request of one Florida driver for a limit on his car’s battery to be lifted. Tesla’s cheaper models, introduced last year, have the same 75KwH battery as its more costly cars, but software limits it to 80% of range. Owners can otherwise buy an upgrade for several thousands of dollars. And because Teslas software updates are online, the company can make the changes with the flick of a virtual switch.
tesla  price  fail  news-event 
5 weeks ago by dancall
Chatbot lets you sue Equifax for up to $25,000 without a lawyer - The Verge
Even if you want to be part of the class action lawsuit against Equifax, you can still sue Equifax for negligence in small claims court using the DoNotPay bot and demand maximum damages. Maximum damages range between $2,500 in states like Rhode Island and Kentucky to $25,000 in Tennessee.

YOU STILL HAVE TO SERVE THE LEGAL FORMS YOURSELF
The bot, which launched in all 50 states in July, is mainly known for helping with parking tickets. But with this new update, its creator, Joshua Browder, who was one of the 143 million affected by the breach, is tackling a much bigger target, with larger aspirations to match. He says, “I hope that my product will replace lawyers, and, with enough success, bankrupt Equifax.”
bots  news-event  finance  legal 
5 weeks ago by dancall
Florida Hurricane Irma updates: Zello app got 6 million downloads in one week - Recode
These are just some of the more pertinent questions that people are fielding on the walkie-talkie app Zello. The app, which was founded in 2012, is serving as the de facto source of real-time updates, as well as access to emergency information, as Hurricane Irma makes landfalls in Florida.
im  widgets  news-event 
5 weeks ago by dancall
Weather Company partners with Twitter for eclipse coverage | Mobile Marketer
The Weather Company, the unit of IBM that runs The Weather Channel digital properties, teamed with Twitter to provide a live stream of next week’s solar eclipse that will be visible in only in the U.S. for the first time in the country’s history. The "Chasing Eclipse 2017" live stream will start at 12 p.m., Aug. 21, EDT, a statement said.

Viewers can see the coverage hosted by meteorologists Ari Sarsalari and Domenica Davis on Twitter, The Weather Channel mobile app and weather.com. Coverage will include user-created content from Twitter, live updates from eclipse viewing parties, a Red Bull Cliff Diving exhibition, real-time footage from NASA and joint weddings, among other events.
twitter  weather  partnerships  news-event 
8 weeks ago by dancall
Complex chain of companies that worked on Grenfell Tower raises oversight concerns | UK news | The Guardian
The building services engineering firm Max Fordham was also commissioned as a specialist consultant, according to the report. Planning documents published in 2012 show the company suggested temporarily removing “fire stopping” between floors of the building so as to install new heating pipework. It is unclear whether this happened and the company did not return requests for comment, while its website does not mention Grenfell.
news-event 
june 2017 by dancall
From King’s Cross to Grenfell Tower — Crooked Timber
Perhaps it was coincidence that these catastrophes happened cheek by jowl, in a way that they just haven’t since. Or perhaps much of it was something to do with the ascendant political ideology of the time, that starved vital infrastructure of much-needed investment, and that celebrated the quick search for profit. One of the good things about living in England over the last quarter century is that this run of disasters came to an end, and things became quite a bit safer. But of course the predictable consequence of the politicians’ collective choice to embrace the economics of austerity over the last seven years—and even more so when it is conjoined with the Tory fondness for the execrable landlord class, a widespread dislike of safety regulations, the cuts in legal aid, and the politics of the majority on Kensington & Chelsea Council, especially when it comes to housing—is that we would regress in some measure to this second-half-of-the-1980s world, and everything that is coming out now about the Grenfell Tower saga suggests that we have so regressed.
news-event  politics 
june 2017 by dancall
How Twitter Is Being Gamed to Feed Misinformation - The New York Times
How this works for conspiracy theories is relatively straightforward. Outside of Twitter — in message boards or Facebook groups — a group will decide on a particular message to push. Then the deluge begins. Bots flood the network, tweeting and retweeting thousands or hundreds of thousands of messages in support of the story, often accompanied by a branding hashtag — #pizzagate, or, a few weeks ago, #sethrich.

The initial aim isn’t to convince or persuade, but simply to overwhelm — to so completely saturate the network that it seems as if people are talking about a particular story. The biggest prize is to get on Twitter’s Trending Topics list, which is often used as an assignment sheet for the rest of the internet.
twitter  news-event  fakenews  how-to  fail 
june 2017 by dancall
Autocracy: Rules for Survival | by Masha Gessen | NYR Daily | The New York Review of Books
Rule #6: Remember the future. Nothing lasts forever. Donald Trump certainly will not, and Trumpism, to the extent that it is centered on Trump’s persona, will not either. Failure to imagine the future may have lost the Democrats this election. They offered no vision of the future to counterbalance Trump’s all-too-familiar white-populist vision of an imaginary past. They had also long ignored the strange and outdated institutions of American democracy that call out for reform—like the electoral college, which has now cost the Democratic Party two elections in which Republicans won with the minority of the popular vote. That should not be normal. But resistance—stubborn, uncompromising, outraged—should be.
politics  news-event 
november 2016 by dancall
It's Going to Be Okay - Wait But Why
1) This is not as bad as it seems.
2) This is a moment for reflection.
Let’s discuss #1 first. Reading the internet throughout the night, I saw Hillary supporters saying a lot of pretty dramatic things, and I think we all need to take it down just a notch.
politics  news-event 
november 2016 by dancall
Election 2016: Donald Trump Took Advantage of a Broken Media Landscape
Is that really fair? Yes and no. There’s no question that certain media outlets, especially cable news networks, played a key role in helping the former reality TV star reach a broader audience. But the truth is much more complicated than just “CNN and Fox News created Donald Trump.”

Whether because he cleverly managed to spot the weaknesses in the current media environment, or simply stumbled onto a plan that wound up working, Trump and his campaign succeeded in doing what amounts to an end-run around the traditional media.

In the past, media outlets like the New York Times or CNN TWX 0.15% were in an a position of power relative to political candidates, especially those like Trump—someone without any kind of traditional political track record or campaign support. If they didn’t cover you, you effectively didn’t exist.
politics  news-event  newspapers  tv 
november 2016 by dancall

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