Obama Opens NSA’s Vast Trove of Warrantless Data to Entire Intelligence Community, Just in Time for Trump
But this massive database inevitably includes vast amount of American’s communications — swept up when they speak to people abroad, when they go abroad themselves, or even if their domestic communications are simply routed abroad. That’s why access was previously limited to data that had already been screened to remove unrelated information and information identifying U.S. persons. The new rules still ostensibly limit access to authorized foreign intelligence and counterintelligence purposes — not ordinary law enforcement purposes — and require screening before they are more widely shared. But privacy activists are skeptical.
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yesterday
Windows 10 is about to get a high-performance Game Mode
Microsoft made a big fuss out of the Windows 10 Creators Update's gaming features, and it's nearly ready to start delivering on them... including some that have remained mysterious. The company has revealed that it'll start trotting out a largely unknown Windows 10 Game Mode as part of Insider previews "this week." The improvement won't be fully functional until later releases, but Microsoft has at last shed some light on what it is: it'll fine-tune your PC to speed up gaming performance. This mode should help both legacy Windows games (Win32) and modern titles (UWP), so you won't have to be picky about what you're playing to notice a difference. You should "soon" hear a lot more about how it works, Microsoft says.
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yesterday
Amazon seeks permission for mystery wireless tests in rural Washington - Business Insider
The filings do not specify what the tests would be for, but they hint at a new type of technology or wireless service, noting that the project would involve prototypes designed to support "innovative communications capabilities and functionalities."

Even more intriguing is that Amazon listed Neil Woodward as the main contact on the filings. Woodward, a retired NASA astronaut who joined Amazon in 2008, is now a senior manager for Prime Air, the team in charge of Amazon's drone-delivery effort, according to his LinkedIn page.

That suggests the tests could involve some kind of communications system to control Amazon's delivery drones. But the details in the filings could also point to a wireless service designed to work with mobile handsets, such as Amazon's Kindle tablets, or perhaps the Echo home speakers that Amazon sells.
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yesterday
Did Obama Expand NSA Surveillance Power so Trump Couldn't Go Further? - The Atlantic
That’s a long way of saying that nothing about this particular rule change exposing Americans to additional privacy risks. However, that doesn’t mean that there are not still reasonable and responsible reforms which might take place.
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yesterday
Virginia “Broadband Deployment Act” would kill municipal broadband deployment | Ars Technica
The Virginia House of Delegates legislation proposed this week by Republican lawmaker Kathy Byron (full text) would prohibit municipal broadband deployments except in very limited circumstances. Among other things, a locality wouldn't be allowed to offer Internet service if an existing network already provides 10Mbps download and 1Mbps upload speeds to 90 percent of potential customers. That speed threshold is low enough that it can be met by old DSL lines in areas that haven't received more modern cable and fiber networks.
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yesterday
How An Allegedly Fake Video Killed A Much-Hyped Drone Startup
The following day, the San Francisco District Attorney filed a civil consumer protection suit alleging the company had intentionally lied to potential customers with its launch video, which purported to showcase Lily's capabilities but was created almost entirely with technology from its rivals. The DA also filed for a temporary restraining order to prevent the company from conducting business, but did allow them to move to refund its customers. 
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yesterday
Open Whisper Systems >> Blog >> There is no WhatsApp 'backdoor'
Given the size and scope of WhatsApp's user base, we feel that their choice to display a non-blocking notification is appropriate. It provides transparent and cryptographically guaranteed confidence in the privacy of a user's communication, along with a simple user experience. The choice to make these notifications "blocking" would in some ways make things worse. That would leak information to the server about who has enabled safety number change notifications and who hasn't, effectively telling the server who it could MITM transparently and who it couldn't; something that WhatsApp considered very carefully.
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2 days ago
Andy Rubin Nears His Comeback, Complete With an ‘Essential’ Phone - Bloomberg
Rubin, creator of the Android operating system, is planning to marry his background in software with artificial intelligence in a risky business: consumer hardware. Armed with about a 40-person team, filled with recruits from Apple Inc. and Alphabet Inc.'s Google, Rubin is preparing to announce a new company called Essential and serve as its Chief Executive Officer, according to people familiar with the matter. 

A platform company designed to tie multiple devices together, Essential is working on a suite of consumer hardware products, including ones for the mobile and smart home markets, one of the people said. 

The centerpiece of the system is a high-end smartphone with a large edge-to-edge screen that lacks a surrounding bezel. At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in early January, Rubin discussed the smartphone with mobile carrier executives, including some from Sprint Corp., people familiar with the talks said.
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3 days ago
Trump leak raises new questions about Telegram security - The Verge
Last night, BuzzFeed published an unconfirmed intelligence report on President-elect Donald Trump’s ties with Russia, sending the political world into red alert. But as explosive as the Trump allegations were, there was one passage that was particularly interesting for cryptography buffs, concerning the popular Telegram chat app.
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3 days ago
The Sound of Silence - Jessica Livingston
Some of the most useful things I've learned about startups over the years are also things I'd never share publicly. Not because the ideas are necessarily controversial in their own right, but because anyone could twist them to seem controversial if they were sufficiently motivated to. And when that happens I immediately regret having said anything. It's a massive distraction. I have two young kids, and I have hundreds of startups to keep track of. I don't have time to fight with people who are trying to misunderstand me.
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3 days ago
WhatsApp backdoor allows snooping on encrypted messages | Technology | The Guardian
WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption relies on the generation of unique security keys, using the acclaimed Signal protocol, developed by Open Whisper Systems, that are traded and verified between users to guarantee communications are secure and cannot be intercepted by a middleman. However, WhatsApp has the ability to force the generation of new encryption keys for offline users, unbeknown to the sender and recipient of the messages, and to make the sender re-encrypt messages with new keys and send them again for any messages that have not been marked as delivered.
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3 days ago
Consumer Reports Now Recommends MacBook Pros - Consumer Reports
With the updated software, the three MacBook Pros in our labs all performed well, with one model running 18.75 hours on a charge. We tested each model multiple times using the new software, following the same protocol we apply to hundreds of laptops every year.
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3 days ago
REP. LIEU STATEMENT ON HIS REVIEW OF CLASSIFIED REPORT ON RUSSIAN HACKING OF U.S. ELECTIONS | Congressman Ted Lieu
“I believe Trump is actively misleading Americans when he says the Russians did not attempt to help his election chances and denigrate Secretary Clinton’s electability.  Cyber espionage against American political organizations and cyber intrusions into our electoral boards are not partisan issues, they are American issues.  I call on every Member of Congress who has been briefed on or read the classified report to tell Trump that he needs to tell the truth to the American people.  At stake is not just our national security, but the very fabric of our democracy.”
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3 days ago
Apple increases app size restriction for tvOS apps from 200MB to 4GB | 9to5Mac
With today’s change, tvOS apps can now be just as big as iOS apps, which are also capped at 4GB. Apple says that this increase in size will allow for developers to “provide a complete, rich user experience” right from installation.
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3 days ago
Chrome 56 adds native support for playing FLAC audio in the browser | 9to5Google
Chrome 56 is currently in the beta channel and should hit stable in about a week. When released, it will bring support for the FLAC audio codec directly in the browser. This will provide a quick way to play those files, with the Mac being the biggest platform to benefit due to a lack of native support.




Support for FLAC in Chrome has been requested since 2011 with momentum gaining in 2015. However, work did not get underway until last September and its final release coincides with Firefox 51 getting the feature later this month.

From an OS-level, Windows 10 and apps that take advantage of system APIs for audio decoding have native support for FLAC. Meanwhile, Android added support starting in 3.1 Honycomb, with files playable in Play Music. However, Apple on iOS and macOS have been standouts in regards to native support. Of course, third-party apps like VLC support playback, but to play in iTunes, file conversions are needed.
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3 days ago
MEPs vote on robots' legal status - and if a kill switch is required - BBC News
Designers should make sure any robots have a kill switch, which would allow functions to be shut down if necessary, the report recommends.
Meanwhile users should be able to use robots "without risk or fear of physical or psychological harm", it states.
Lorna Brazell, a partner at law firm Osborne Clarke, was surprised by how far-reaching the rules were.
But questioned the need to give future robots legal status.
"Blue whales and gorillas don't have personhood but I would suggest that they have as many aspects of humanity as robots, so I don't see why we should jump into giving robots this status."
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3 days ago
U.S. appeals court revives antitrust lawsuit against Apple | Reuters
iPhone app purchasers may sue Apple Inc over allegations that the company monopolized the market for iPhone apps by not allowing users to purchase them outside the App Store, leading to higher prices, a U.S. appeals court ruled on Thursday.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling revives a long-simmering legal challenge originally filed in 2012 taking aim at Apple’s practice of only allowing iPhones to run apps purchased from its own App Store. A group of iPhone users sued saying the Cupertino, California, company's practice was anticompetitive.
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3 days ago
The Nintendo Switch will cost $300 and release worldwide on March 3 | TechCrunch
Nintendo has announced the launch date and price of the Nintendo Switch at an event in Tokyo; the company’s next console will be released worldwide on March 3 for $300 in the US and comparable amounts elsewhere. The company also confirmed many things hitherto only rumored about the console: a capacitive screen, motion controls, a new Splatoon and Mario, and more.

Yes, and for those of you came here for the Zelda release date, I’m just going to put it up top, even though it was literally the last thing they announced. Zelda: Breath of the Wild will be available at launch. Watch the new trailer; this game looks completely off the chain.
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3 days ago
Consumer Reports Retesting MacBook Pro Battery Life After Apple Says Safari Bug to Blame - Mac Rumors
According to Apple, this last part of our testing is what triggered a bug in the company’s Safari browser. Indeed, when we turned the caching function back on as part of the research we did after publishing our initial findings, the three MacBooks we’d originally tested had consistently high battery life results.
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6 days ago
SiliconANGLE
With a few exceptions, third-party application access to the platform will end April 25. The company didn’t even officially announce the abandonment of the API. Instead, the notice came in the form of an updated Frequently Asked Questions page outlining the termination, and an email to developers active on the platform.
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7 days ago
Facebook’s Virtual Reality Foray Derided as ‘Fanciful Story’ - Bloomberg
ZeniMax Media Inc. is trying to show that it did the heavy lifting to develop the software and hardware for the virtual reality goggles, alleging a star employee recruited by Oculus purloined its intellectual property. Facebook and the Oculus executives named in the lawsuit deny wrongdoing and say it’s ZeniMax that’s spinning revisionist history.
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7 days ago
AI in the public interest: How a new fund will advance the ethics of artificial intelligence - Knight Foundation
A group of foundations, investors and academic institutions are joining in this unique collaboration, committing $27 million to an Ethics and Governance of Artificial Intelligence Fund. This effort brings together leading minds in technology, philanthropy and two of the leading academic centers on internet issues. Together, we’re committing $27 million as the initial commitment to the effort. It’s unusual, not just for the mix, but because of the personal commitment and engagement of this group.
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7 days ago
(95) Robert Scoble - Exclusive news: Apple and Zeiss working together...
A Zeiss employee confirmed the rumors that Apple and Carl Zeiss AG are working on a light pair of augmented reality/mixed reality glasses that may be announced this year. (I thought it was next year but now that I saw this I believe it will happen this year).
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7 days ago
Marissa Mayer is resigning from Yahoo's board - Business Insider
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer will resign from the company's board of directors after its planned $4.8 billion merger with Verizon is completed, Yahoo announced in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday.
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7 days ago
TV anchor says live on-air 'Alexa, order me a dollhouse' – guess what happens next • The Register
Telly station CW-6 said the blunder happened during a Thursday morning news package about a Texan six-year-old who racked up big charges while talking to an Echo gadget in her home. According to her parents' Amazon account, their daughter said: "Can you play dollhouse with me and get me a dollhouse?" Next thing they knew, a $160 KidKraft Sparkle Mansion dollhouse and four pounds of sugar cookies arrived on their doorstep.
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9 days ago
Russia Requires Apple and Google to Remove LinkedIn From Local App Stores - The New York Times
WASHINGTON — Smartphone users in Russia can no longer download the LinkedIn app on iPhone or Android devices, following a similar move in China to block The New York Times app on iPhones.

The demand by Russian authorities to remove LinkedIn in Apple and Google app stores comes weeks after a court blocked the professional networking service for flouting local laws that require internet firms to store data on Russian citizens within the nation’s borders.
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9 days ago
Samsung Electronics forecasts fourth-quarter profit at over three-year high | Reuters
Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (005930.KS) said on Friday its fourth-quarter profit likely leapt 50 percent from a year earlier to its highest level in more than three years, beating expectations on strong chip sales and a smartphone rebound.

The upbeat outlook comes despite a slight fall in revenue and the anticipated $2.1 billion profit hit from the withdrawal of the fire-prone Galaxy Note 7 premium smartphone in October.
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9 days ago
Nvidia and Mercedes-Benz to bring an AI car to market within a year | TechCrunch
Nvidia already announced a partnership at CES to bring a AI self-driving car to production, and now Mercedes-Benz is also teaming up with the GPU-maker on a vehicle with AI on board. Nvidia and Mercedes-Benz are also setting an ambitious timeline for their goal; the two will field this new vehicle within the next 12 months, Nvidia confirmed to TechCrunch.
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9 days ago
Google Hangouts API gets hung out to dry | TechCrunch
“In order to streamline our efforts further, we will be retiring the Google+ Hangouts API that enables developers to build apps for the older version of Hangouts video calls. This API was originally intended to support social scenarios for consumer users as part of Google+, whereas Hangouts is now turning to focus on enterprise use cases.
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9 days ago
Intel’s Compute Card is a PC that can fit in your wallet | Ars Technica
Intel hasn't given us specific information about the specs and speeds of its first Compute Cards, but you can expect the fastest ones to approach the performance of high-end fanless laptops like Apple's MacBooks. Intel told us that processors with a TDP of up to 6W could fit inside the Compute Cards, which covers both low-power Atom chips like those that powered early versions of Intel's Compute Stick to full Core M and Y-series Core i5 and i7 CPUs like the ones you find in laptops.
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9 days ago
Apple CEO Cook’s 2016 Pay Lower as Tech Giant Misses Targets - WSJ
Apple fell short of its own projections in part because it mistakenly assumed consumers’ appetite for the iPhone 6S, introduced in 2015, would outpace demand for the predecessor device. The Apple Watch, introduced in 2015, and services including Apple Music, iTunes and the App Store haven’t been able to offset the iPhone’s decline.
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9 days ago
Facebook Hires Campbell Brown to Lead News Partnerships Team - The New York Times
The position is a new one for Facebook. In the role, Ms. Brown will “help news organizations and journalists work more closely and more effectively with Facebook,” she wrote on her Facebook page on Friday afternoon.
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9 days ago
Apple cuts Tim Cook's pay 15% for missing sales goals - Jan. 6, 2017
That meant Cook's cash bonus fell to $5.4 million in 2016, down from $8 million the year before. All told, Cook's total compensation was $8.7 million last year, compared with $10.3 million in 2015.
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10 days ago
How the U.S. Hobbled Its Hacking Case Against Russia and Enabled Truthers - The Daily Beast
Sometimes, in his covert influence campaign against America, Vladimir Putin need do nothing but sit back and chuckle mirthlessly while U.S. officials shoot themselves in the foot. Such was the case last week when the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI released a technical exposé of Russia’s hacking that industry experts are slamming as worse than useless—so jumbled that it potentially harms cybersecurity, so aimless that it muddies the clear public evidence that Russia hacked the Democratic Party to affect the election, and so wrong it enables the Trump-friendly conspiracy theorists trying to explain away that evidence.
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10 days ago
Xiaomi In-Ear Headphones Pro HD (2 +1 Hybrid) - Page 15
For earbuds with in-line control there are 2 types- 
The original TRRS configuration was created by Nokia and has a pinout of Left Audio, Right Audio, Mic, Ground.
Apple came along and in typical elitist fashion changed their pinout to Left Audio, Right Audio, Ground, Mic.

This is why many apple headsets will not work with android, because the last 2 connections, for Mic and Ground are switched. The issue is with the hardware. 
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13 days ago
Good Guy Hacker Launches 'Security Without Borders' to Defend At-Risk Dissidents | Motherboard
On the Security Without Borders website, visitors can click a “Request Assistance” button, which takes them through to a form asking for some basic information: their name, the type of work they do, and what sort of help they're after. That might include a security assessment for a human rights defender, general advice, or maybe someone could send a suspicious link they are worried was part of an attempted attack against them.
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13 days ago
Tim Cook On Why He Met With President Elect Trump
Cook’s case in the internal communication, which we verified is legitimate, is that there was more value in engaging than there was in not doing so. “Personally, I’ve never found being on the sideline a successful place to be,” writes Cook. “The way that you influence these issues is to be in the arena. So whether it’s in this country, or the European Union, or in China or South America, we engage. And we engage when we agree and we engage when we disagree. I think it’s very important to do that because you don’t change things by just yelling. You change things by showing everyone why your way is the best. In many ways, it’s a debate of ideas.”
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28 days ago
The True Story Behind The Biggest Fake News Hit Of The Election - BuzzFeed News
Meanwhile, the growing network of fake sites began pumping out new variations. Male celebrities suddenly had very complimentary things to say about the women in specific towns. Celebrities began getting flat tires in obscure places, naming somewhat obscure locales as their favorite vacation spots, and buying homes in unexpected communities. One of the strangest variations was a series of at least 11 hoax stories claiming that Justin Bieber was building megachurches in places such as Spokane, Washington.
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29 days ago
LinkedIn resets some Lynda.com users' passwords following data leak | VentureBeat | Security | by Jordan Novet
But there was a small percentage of users (fewer than 55,000) whose passwords were in the breached database, and Lynda.com has reset their passwords and informed them that it has done so. The passwords were “cryptographically salted and hashed” and no credit card information was included, the spokesperson wrote.
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29 days ago
The government body that oversees the security of voting systems was itself hacked | TechCrunch
Recorded Future heard early this month that the EAC had been hacked, and found someone they refer to as Rasputin (not the hacker’s real name or handle) trying to sell more than 100 logins to its systems. Some of those logins had full administrative privileges, and many had access to confidential testing plans and results for voting hardware around the country.
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4 weeks ago
The Inside Story Behind Pebble’s Demise
It turned out that both Pebble — and, incidentally, Apple —had misjudged the wearables market. The idea of an iPhone on the wrist hasn’t caught on. The one killer app for wrist devices, at least so far, seems to be fitness. Active people find it useful to wear something that quantifies your biometrics and tracks your runs. Apple’s emphasis on fashion and Pebble’s on productivity and third-party innovation were costly detours—the smartwatch market is rooted in health and fitness. “We learned late, and Apple is learning this as well,” says Migicovsky. (He acknowledges that notifications are perhaps the other key function smartwatches perform.) “We did not get this in 2014 — if we had come out then as the smartwatch fitness wearable, maybe it would be a bit different.”
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4 weeks ago
Uber said it protects you from spying. Security sources say otherwise | Reveal
“Uber’s lack of security regarding its customer data was resulting in Uber employees being able to track high profile politicians, celebrities, and even personal acquaintances of Uber employees, including ex-boyfriends/girlfriends, and ex-spouses,” Spangenberg wrote in a court declaration, signed in October under penalty of perjury.
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5 weeks ago
As Trumplethinskin lets down his hair for tech, shame on Silicon Valley for climbing the Tower in silence - Recode
Or you can say no — loudly and in public. You can resist the forces that are against immigrants, because it is immigrants who built America and immigrants who most definitely built tech. You can defend science that says climate change is a big threat and that tech can be a part of fixing it. You can insist we invest in critical technologies that point the way to things like new digital health inventions and transportation revolutions. You can do what made Silicon Valley great again and again.
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5 weeks ago
News from The Associated Press
Storing Google data in Cuba eliminates the long distances that signals must travel from the island through Venezuela to the nearest Google server. More than a half century after cutting virtually all economic ties with Cuba, the U.S. has no direct data link to the island.
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5 weeks ago
Google Scaled Back Self-Driving Car Ambitions — The Information
Alphabet has backed off plans to develop a revolutionary car without a steering wheel or pedals, at least for now, according to people close to the closely-watched project. Instead, the self-driving car pioneer has settled on a more practical effort to partner with automakers to make a vehicle that drives itself but has traditional features for human drivers.
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5 weeks ago
Instagram brings live video broadcasts to all U.S. users | TechCrunch
Instagram announced its Live video broadcasting features in November, which allow users to show your followers what you’re up to in real time, and also let users browse for Live videos happening at this very moment as selected by Instagram algorithmically. Now, it’s making these features available to all users in the U.S. over the course of the next few days.
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5 weeks ago
Actually, Elon Musk might skip Trump’s tech summit - Recode
Musk is not being shy and has said publicly that he wanted to talk to Trump, whom he has also been critical of during the campaign. And there is certainly a lot for the pair to discuss, including the future of transportation and rules around electric and self-driving cars, infrastructure to support those efforts and other topics important to Musk, such as climate issues. Also, obvi, space stuff.

(By the way, some of the other invited-but-busy execs include Uber CEO Travis Kalanick and Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky, both traveling abroad.)

The invite for the tech event came from Trump's chief of staff, Reince Priebus, as well as his son-in-law and chief-whatever Jared Kushner and, of course, the now tech-biquitous Thiel.
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5 weeks ago
When every moment of childhood can be recorded and shared, what happens to childhood? | The Washington Post
Max’s family is used to hearing him pretend that strangers on the Internet can see him. In the six years he’s been growing up, YouTube has become the largest platform for children’s entertainment on Earth. Today’s kids have little interest in the well-groomed child actors that past generations saw on TV. They want to watch each other.
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5 weeks ago
Congress Moves to Curb Ticket Scalping, Banning Bots Used Online - The New York Times
On Wednesday, the House of Representatives passed the Better Online Ticket Sales Act, or BOTS Act, with bipartisan support, following the bill’s passage a week ago in the Senate. It will now go to the White House for President Obama’s signature.
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5 weeks ago
Fitbit CEO says buying Pebble could help it crack the code on smartwatches - The Verge
To be clear, Fitbit hasn’t explicitly said it is making a “real” smartwatch, one with more advanced capabilities than the is-it-or-isn’t-it-a-smartwatch Blaze. But all signs point in that direction. First, the Pebble acquisition earlier this week: Fitbit has said more than once that it bought the company for its smartwatch software platform, not its hardware. Earlier this year Fitbit also acquired Coin, a payment-technology startup, as part of an effort to develop an “active NFC payment solution.” And on Fitbit’s most recent earnings call, Park himself said the company was planning to expand into “new form factors” next year.
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5 weeks ago
Google’s self-driving car team is hiring executives as it prepares to spin out from Alphabet’s X - Recode
Google’s self-driving project, led by ex-Hyundai CEO and president John Krafcik, is expected to be graduating from Alphabet’s moonshot shop “soon.” That’s according to Krafcik, who spoke at the Nikkei Innovation Forum in Palo Alto in October.

While the timeline of the project’s impending spinout isn’t any clearer two months later, the self-driving project is evidently preparing to separate from the mothership by hiring several of its own executives to positions X, formerly known as Google X, already has.
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5 weeks ago
Google Employee Gifts: Charity, Not Gadgets
On Thursday Bloomberg published a bruising story about the new, cost-conscious regime of Alphabet, driven by its corporate re-organization and its ex-Wall Street CFO, Ruth Porat. Shortly after the story hit, employees were informed that their holiday gift this year was a donation to charity, Fortune has learned. Alphabet donated $30 million worth of Chromebooks, phones, and associated tech support to schools on its employees’ behalf.
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5 weeks ago
AT&T customers get $88 million in credits and refunds for illegal charges | Ars Technica
The cramming charges were typically $9.99 per month "for ringtones and text message subscriptions containing love tips, horoscopes, and 'fun facts,'" the FTC said. AT&T tolerated the "unauthorized—and illegal—charges," placing them on customers' phone bills despite being aware of the problem. The company made it difficult for customers to seek refunds, the FTC said in 2014.
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5 weeks ago
Michigan just became the first state to pass comprehensive self-driving regulations - Recode
The new regulations do, to their credit, make the question of liability a little bit clearer. Under the new laws, which go into effect immediately, MDOT will require automakers that are operating a ride-hail network to take full liability for accidents in which the vehicle was driving itself and was found at fault.
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5 weeks ago
Samsung confirms it will render the US Note 7 useless with next update - The Verge
This final shutdown of the phone appears to be Samsung's last effort to get all Note 7s back in its possession. Samsung says that 93 percent of US-sold Note 7 units have now been returned, which puts about 133,000 phones unaccounted for. And with this next update meant to basically kill the device for good, Samsung will ramp up communication with customers still holding onto them for some reason:
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5 weeks ago
Verizon statement regarding Samsung Galaxy Note7 | About Verizon
Today, Samsung announced an update to the Galaxy Note7 that would stop the smartphone from charging, rendering it useless unless attached to a power charger. Verizon will not be taking part in this update because of the added risk this could pose to Galaxy Note7 users that do not have another device to switch to. We will not push a software upgrade that will eliminate the ability for the Note7 to work as a mobile device in the heart of the holiday travel season. We do not want to make it impossible to contact family, first responders or medical professionals in an emergency situation.
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5 weeks ago
Edward Snowden: ‘Do I Think Things Are Fixed? No.’ - The New York Times
Snowden: Being patriotic doesn’t simply mean agreeing with your government. Being willing to disagree, particularly in a risky manner, is actually what we need more of today. When we have this incredible, often fact-free environment where politicians can make claims and then they’re reported as truth, how do we actually steer democracy? If we have facts, we can help facilitate democracy, and this is my role.
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5 weeks ago
Chrome 55 for Android rolling out w/ new offline ‘Downloads’ feature, reduced memory usage | 9to5Google
Chrome 55 for Mac, Windows, and Linux was a major update that has the browser default to HTML5 in a bid to further kill Flash usage. Rolling out now, version 55 for Android adds a ‘Downloads’ feature that saves sites, music, and video for offline viewing, as well as improvements for low-memory devices.
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5 weeks ago
Dark Patterns - User Interfaces Designed to Trick People
A Dark Pattern is a user interface that has been carefully crafted to trick users into doing things, such as buying insurance with their purchase or signing up for recurring bills.
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5 weeks ago
PewDiePie: YouTube may be 'killing' my channel because I'm white, so I'll delete it | The Independent
The Swedish YouTuber has said that he is going to delete his account because the video site has been penalising him and other YouTubers, who argue that the site has changed its algorithm so that fewer people see their videos. That has led to his popularity falling, he said in a video where he ranted against the site.

And the problem might be that he is white, he said in the same rant. Laying out the possible reasons that YouTube is supposedly looking to undermine him, he pointed to his race as well as the kinds of titles he uses on his videos.
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5 weeks ago
Tech Companies Delay Diversity Reports to Rethink Goals - WSJ
Twitter Inc. and Pinterest Inc. are set to release their updates this month, according to spokeswomen at each company, about 16 months after their previous reports. This year, however, they will both focus on hiring goals, rather than just the racial and gender breakdown of their employees that has become the industry standard.

“It’s not about hitting a number for the sake of doing so,” said Candice Morgan, Pinterest’s head of diversity and inclusion. “The goals are about fundamentally making progress towards doing our most innovative work.”
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5 weeks ago
Children’s Headphones May Carry Risk of Hearing Loss - The New York Times
But a new analysis by The Wirecutter, a product recommendations website owned by The New York Times, has found that half of 30 sets of children’s headphones tested did not restrict volume to the promised limit. The worst headphones produced sound so loud that it could be hazardous to ears in minutes.
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5 weeks ago
Anil Dash is the new CEO of Fog Creek Software – Joel on Software
Fog Creek is a weird company here, with unique values that you don’t find in a lot of other companies. That’s why we’re so successful, and that’s why we love working here. Some of the weird stuff we do is non-negotiable. We would never dream of having just any competent person from outside the company come in, let alone give them the CEO role, if we weren’t convinced that they were 100% fanatical and excited about Fog Creek Software’s unique operating system. We’ve been friends with Anil for so long that we’re confident that the combination of his talents and worldview with our quirky operating system will be a stellar combination.
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6 weeks ago
Google alters search autocomplete to remove 'are Jews evil' suggestion | Technology | The Guardian
Typing the phrase “are Jews” into Google, the search engine suggested “evil”, for “are women” it again suggested “evil” and for “are Muslims” it suggested “bad”, an Observer article reported.


Google, democracy and the truth about internet search
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On Monday the searches for Jews and women no longer returned those results, although the “are Muslims bad” autocomplete was still present.
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6 weeks ago
Obama Has a Plan to Fix Cybersecurity, But Its Success Depends on Trump | WIRED
Late Friday afternoon last week, the White House’s Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity released the results of a nine-month study of America’s cybersecurity problems. Its recommendations, in a hundred-page report, cover a lot of ground. It proposes fixing the shambolic security of internet-of-things consumer devices like routers and webcams, re-organizing responsibility for the cybersecurity of federal agencies, and fostering a new generation of skilled American cybersecurity experts, among other actionable steps.
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6 weeks ago
Plume’s pint-sized Wi-Fi pods are now available - The Verge
Each Plume Adaptive Wifi pod costs $69, while a three-pack is $179 and a six-pack is $329. They are available in champagne, silver, or black, and the company recommends one pod per room. The Plume system can be purchased direct from the company’s online store.
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6 weeks ago
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