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Alfonsino
263 articles
My Web Markups - Alfonsino
6 annotations
  • In ongoing work, the team is looking not just to improve effective delivery of drugs but also for opportunities to create medications for people for whom standard formulations are not a good option, using big data to solve problems in small populations by looking at genetic history, allergies, and food reactions.
  • “We have an opportunity to think about matching the delivery system to the patient,” explains Reker, now an assistant professor of biomedical engineering at Duke University. “We can account for things like drug absorption, genetics, even allergies to reduce side effects upon delivery. Whatever the mutation or medical condition, the right drug is only the right drug if it actually works for the patient.”
  • They found that the nanoparticle significantly reduced levels of a marker associated with liver cancer progression compared to mice given sorafenib alone, and lived longer than mice given sorafenib or glycyrrhizin alone.
  • The researchers selected six nanoparticles for further validation, including one composed of sorafenib, a treatment commonly used for advanced liver and other cancers, and glycyrrhizin, a compound frequently used as both a food and drug additive and most commonly known as licorice flavoring. Although sorafenib is the standard of care for advanced liver cancer, its effectiveness is limited.
  • They selected 16 self-aggregating small-molecule drugs with a variety of chemical structures and therapeutic applications and a diverse set of 90 widely available compounds, including ingredients that are already added to drugs to make them taste better, last longer, or make them more stable. Because both the drugs and the inactive ingredients are already FDA-approved, the resulting nanoparticles are likely to be safer and move through the FDA approval process more quickly.
  • “So many drugs out there don’t live up to their full potential because of insufficient targeting, low bioavailability, or rapid drug metabolism,” says Daniel Reker, lead author of the study and a former postdoc in the laboratory of Robert Langer. “By working at the interface of data science, machine learning, and drug delivery, our hope is to rapidly expand our tool set for making sure a drug gets to the place it needs to be and can actually treat and help a human being.”
  • “We have previously described some of the negative and positive effects that inactive ingredients can have on drugs, and here, through a concerted collaboration across our laboratories and core facilities, describe an approach focusing on the potential positive effects these can have on nanoformulation,” says Giovanni Traverso, the Karl Van Tassel (1925) Career Development Professor of Mechanical Engineering, and senior corresponding author of the study.
  • In a study published in Nature Nanotechnology, researchers screened 2.1 million pairings of small-molecule drugs and “inactive” drug ingredients, identifying 100 new nanoparticles with potential applications that include the treatment of cancer, asthma, malaria, and viral and fungal infections.
  • Small-molecule therapeutics treat a wide variety of diseases, but their effectiveness is often diminished because of their pharmacokinetics — what the body does to a drug. After administration, the body dictates how much of the drug is absorbed, which organs the drug enters, and how quickly the body metabolizes and excretes the drug again.
9 annotations
  • "The outside world can feel like a really dangerous place, especially today with anti-trans and anti-Asian" violence and threats, Chien said, referring to the recent spate of anti-Asian crime in the U.S.She said speaking out and advocating are important ways to create supportive workplaces for trans people."In the absence of language, there's an absence of possibility," Chien said.
  • As trans people, "we cannot only be the ones educating other people," Masure said. "It gets exhausting."
  • "What I see the most is the lack of leadership involvement," Masure said. "I see people working in companies where they are not respected ... their pronouns are not respected ... jokes are made during regular meetings." Masure said that leaders have to set examples by being examples of inclusivity.
  • Health care options to support trans people are also critical ways companies can help."Having health insurance that covers gender-affirming procedures is just something that is so hard to find," Eli said. For the trans community, insurance that covers "big procedures, like bottom surgeries and top surgeries," is needed, Eli said."But ... there's other procedures, like facial surgeries, that are not covered as often that are very important ... in terms of safety out in public for people, especially trans feminine people and trans women," said Eli.
  • Even the way businesses handle internal forms can make a difference. Chien recalled her relief when she submitted a name-change form to AT&T's HR department. The form offered employees the option to select "personal choice" as a reason for a name change request -- meaning they did not have to disclose information they may feel uncomfortable sharing. For Chien, that option on the form meant a "complete shift of agency of who has the right to decide my future and my identity."
  • "I wanted to just come out through email," Eli said. Instead, Eli said they had to "write up something that either I could tell people face to face ... individually or in a group. Or I was told the managers could do that. So it ended up being that one of the managers came out to people in small groups for me, which was not really my ideal way of doing it."
  • The service is much-needed as even the most well-intentioned companies can make missteps."I recognized that I was trans a couple years into working for Apple. And then I came out while I was there and started to medically and socially transition," Eli said.
  • Masure became more empowered to embrace their authentic self, albeit with some consequences."I was working in tech at the time, and I had to advocate for myself, and I lost some clients being a freelancer," Masure said.That "led me to realize there was a need for the tech community to train around inclusion. ... [The] usage of pronouns and putting them into our names in email signatures, on LinkedIn, is helping not only the trans community, but also everyone to be more inclusive," said Masure.
  • Masure worked for years as a user experience designer, but now consults with companies on how to foster inclusive environments for transgender people."I was born as a girl, and I lived my life as a woman for 36 years. And I only came out four years ago," Masure, who was born in France, told ABC News."I didn't see any trans people around me, the only ones were in the media ... mostly trans women, and they were made fun of," Masure said.
  • "I think that people in the tech industry tend to have sometimes more eclectic backgrounds ... there's a lot of different kinds of types of people coming together," Eli, 26, who asked their last name withheld for privacy reasons, told ABC News. Eli worked for several years in Apple retail.
  • "Tech is a place where your performance is really easy to quantify," she said. "I think it creates room for people who may be different in some way, but are also able to apply some of those arcane skills to ... tech."
  • Emma Best is a queer and nonbinary journalist, "leakivist," publisher and sometimes analyst. As a "leakivist," Best uses their tech prowess as a form of activism and has made leaked data accessible to media and other journalists.Best said anonymity makes it easier for trans people and gender nonconforming individuals to "get their foot in the door" in the tech space, especially with "the prevalence of remote working."But, Best said, more trans, queer and nonbinary people are also more active in tech because they are being more visible and "refusing to yield their space."
  • Violence and stigma against trans people make many of them wary about coming out in public. Adding to anti-trans sentiment, state legislators have filed a record number of bills this year that would impact the rights of transgender people, according to the Human Rights Campaign.
  • That led to many years of living a "submarined" life, Chien said. She found success as an engineer, working right out of college for a defense contractor, but living an inauthentic life took a toll."I was afraid of losing the marriage that I had and the daughter that we had and my professional reputation once my career was established," she said."There was always something to worry about," Chien said. She said she became "unhappy, sullen and unproductive" at work.
  • "I do recall that at a very early age I was asking for toys and friends and clothes ... to play with some of the girls in the neighborhood," she said.With those questions, came anxiety. As the only American-born son in her family, she said that in Chinese culture, "there are certain expectations of sons.""I did not feel safe uncovering my gender identity. In fact, in early years it didn't even have a name. There was no way for me to even express the idea that I might want to be a girl because there were no words for it other than words that convey mental illness and illegal behavior," she said.
  • Exact statistics on trans people in tech are virtually nonexistent. Trans people face concerns over their safety, security and often, their very lives, by coming out. But there is a vibrant, engaged and increasingly vocal trans community made up of engineers, software developers, user interface designers and other tech professionals.
  • Ginger Chien said she was a "techie" from a young age."I was given all of the opportunities typically afforded to boys," she recalled. "I was given freedom to be loud, and to attract attention. And given all of the technology toys as well -- Legos, Tinker toys, erector sets."
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  • “Yes, Juneteenth is just one day, and we have yet to see how the nation will respond to the injustices in the months and years to come
  • Today, Facebook announced it would spend at least $100 million annually with Black-owned suppliers.
  • Forming habits around hiring Black people, promoting Black employees, paying Black employees fairly, funding Black founders and making room for Black people in leadership positions is what will lead to concrete change in this industry. 
  • tech companies need to go beyond one-off actions and form habits around racial justice work.
  • making statements about standing with the Black community and donating money, companies need to ensure they take more than just actions to combat racism in tec
  • Sure, had these companies not gone public with their respective Juneteenth plans, it’s possible other companies would not have followed suit.
  • Other plans by companies include encouraging employees to use the day as a time to learn about racial injustice or to officially commemorate the day on Google Calendar. It’s worth noting that Apple added Juneteenth to its iOS calendar back in 2018. 
  • , many tech companies have announced plans to make Juneteenth an official holiday for employees or recognize the day in some other way. Jack Dorsey, CEO of Square and Twitter, was the first major tech CEO to announce that Juneteenth would be a paid holiday for employees. Since then, companies like Facebook, Google, Amazon, Uber and Lyft have announced their own respective plans to commemorate the day.
  • Tech companies just found out about Juneteenth, and this is what they’re doing
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  • Intel will let customers build chips using its own x86 processor cores and the Arm designs that dominate the smartphone business. Intel customers also will be able to build chips using RISC-V, a newer rival to Arm designs.
  • Under Nadella, Microsoft has embraced its powerful rivals like the Linux operating system and smartphones powered by Google and Apple software. Now Gelsinger is lending its manufacturing clout -- albeit somewhat tarnished right now -- to its top rivals. Gone is the attitude of "you're with us or you're against us."
  • The strategy arrives during a major chip shortage that's delaying car manufacturing and causing other problems. TSMC plans to spend a whopping $28 billion on new chipmaking capacity this year to try to meet demand.
  • Also challenging is Intel's effort at bringing 7nm chip production to volume, accelerating the next shift to its 5nm and embracing new technology to combine smaller "chiplets" into a single more powerful chip package, Gwennap said."If anyone can pull that off, Pat is the guy to do it," Gwennap said of Gelsinger. Gelsinger spent 30 years at Intel, rising to chief technology officer before leaving for a long stint at software maker VMware.
  • Not everyone is so bullish. "The foundry effort seems unlikely to be any more successful than any of Intel's previous foundry attempts," said Linley Gwennap, an analyst at Linley Group. "Intel has always failed at foundry because it doesn't offer standard tools and libraries that TSMC and Samsung support, and external customers know that they will always be the lowest priority in Intel's fabs."
  • Intel is making progress on moving to its newer manufacturing process, which uses electronic components measuring 10 nanometers, or billionths of a meter, Gelsinger said. He also expressed confidence about the 2023 shift to its 7nm process, which doubles the number of circuitry elements that fit into a given area. Gelsinger's confident commitments echoed those of former CEO Andy Grove, who led Intel during some of Gelsinger's earlier tenure at the company."Intel is back. The old Intel is now the new Intel as we look to the future," Gelsinger said. "Our confidence in 7nm's health and competitiveness is accelerating."
  • After years of struggling to keep up with competitors, Intel will adopt their core strategy by making other companies' chips for them, new Chief Executive Pat Gelsinger said Tuesday. Intel largely has focused on making its own chips, but that'll change with the new and independent Intel Foundry Services business unit.
  • Intel's move also could help anchor technology supply chains to the United States -- an advantage during a time when politicians are concerned about reliance on Asian manufacturers. Intel welcomes political efforts to boost the US processor business, but the foundry shift doesn't depend on those efforts at all, Gelsinger said.
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  • If Apple's future is a port-less iPhone with only MagSafe charging, then the OnePlus 9 Pro and its 50-watt wireless charger are a welcome proof of concept of how it might work. It solves perhaps the biggest concern many of us would have, aside from how much we'd need to spend to swap out our existing chargers. And if Apple keeps the Lightning port, the OnePlus 9 Pro illustrates that we should expect a lot more from the next version of MagSafe charging.
  • If Apple ever did remove the Lightning port from the iPhone completely, I realize there would be more than just batteries and charging to consider. Like what would come in the actual box to charge the phone? A lower-watt MagSafe charger? How much would a 50-watt wireless charger from Apple cost? If OnePlus charges $70, it's easy to see Apple charging $99 or $129. Would this feature just be available on the "Pro" versions of the iPhone 13 or would it be across the line? Also, what replaces the data sharing that the Lightning port provides?
  • This means you can go from an empty battery to a full one in about 45 minutes without plugging the phone in. What's more impressive is that this level of fast wireless charging comes on a phone that costs $969 (£829, which converts roughly to AU$1,490). To give you perspective, the $999 iPhone 12 Pro and a MagSafe charger top out at 15 watts. Imagine being able to wirelessly charge your iPhone with a MagSafe charger at 50 watts instead of 15.
  • One of the more persistent rumors for the next iPhone (some call it the iPhone 13) is that Apple will scrap the Lightning port entirely. And with the launch last year of MagSafe charging on the iPhone 12 series, it's not hard to envision a future in which we rely solely on wireless charging to power our phone's battery. An iPhone 12 on a MagSafe charger can go from 0 to 50% battery charge in an hour. This is hardly a replacement for the much faster charging you get with a Lightning cable and wall charger.
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  • For sight and sound, we have VR headsets. For touch, we have specially designed  VR gloves that act as a wearable interface.
  • With a range of 6 different sensors connected to the HMD and gloves, you can experience your interactive experience without having to rely on 3rd party tracking devices
  • They boast a 5ms latency, full finger tracking (with plug and play, and quick calibration), and haptic feedback to give you a more immersed experience. Their breathable, environmentally friendly, and antibacterial material keeps them dry and clean; making them very low maintenance.
  • It has 10 zones sensing and providing forces on each hand. This means that when you lift objects in the virtual world, you’ll actually feel them; from snowballs to baseballs, the difference in the objects are experienced by the user.
  • The glove captures finger gestures and 3D postures to help its wearer experience the immersive technology in a distinctive way
  • Integrated into Exoglove, are sensors that make it possible for the glove to track hand posture with tremendous accuracy; plus it even covers a considerably wide range. The sensors are powered by 3 subsystems for tracking hand position, finger movement and haptic perception
  • It boasts haptic feedback on each individual finger, 10ms latency, and a 10-hour battery life. 7 sensors track your fingers as precisely as possible in order to give you a seamless integration into your virtual world of choice. These were made with you in mind.
  • With a full range of hand motions and force feedback, this gadget will have you truly interacting with virtual reality.
  • Proof of concept is the aim of the game with these gloves. They aren’t aimed at gamers but rather at commercial users. Everything from a military simulation to a simulation of a new car design can benefit from the use of HaptX gloves
  • The gloves are tracked using cameras which makes it special impractical and rather inconvenient price wise. The reason for this, according to their chief scientist Michael Abrash, is because our hands have 25 degrees of freedom which makes it difficult for accurate tracking without cameras. The crispness in the video demonstration shows us that he clearly knows what he’s talking about.
  • create human-like sensation, that’s simply down to the advanced vibrotactile actuators that have been incorporated into it – there are 10 of these actuators available. It is more of an upgrade on the Gloveone developed by the same company.
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  • "We've always emphasised the need for both first-time and experienced online daters to exercise caution and 'check the person, not the profile'," she told the BBC."That's why we applaud any initiative which enables people to carry out better due diligence before they get into a relationship that could end up being very damaging."
  • A 2019 investigation by ProPublica found registered sex offenders on many of Match Group's free platforms. Following ProPublica's investigation, 11 members of Congress sent a letter to Match Group President Shar Dubey. "Dating platforms, like those owned by Match Group, must be doing everything in their power to ensure the safety of their users. This means vigilant enforcement of terms of service that empower consumers in any online marketplace," the February 2020 letter said.
  • The background checks company was founded by women and collects "public records and reports of violence or abuse, including arrests, convictions, restraining orders, harassment, and other violent crimes" to create its reports.The checks will not include any drug charges or traffic violations.
  • "We recognise corporations can play a key role in helping remove those barriers with technology and true collaboration rooted in action," Tracey Breeden, Match Group's Head of Safety and Social Advocacy, said.
  • One of the world's most popular dating apps is adding a background check feature to its platform in the US. Later this year, Tinder will allow users to view public records information of prospective dates using their name or mobile number.
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  • It's not uncommon for a hyper-rich founder to do this - there are precedents. Think of Sergey Brin and Larry Page at Google or Bill Gates at Microsoft. Those two companies have done fantastically well under Sundar Pichai and Satya Nadella respectively. And Mr Bezos is not leaving, remember. He'll be less involved in running the everyday aspects of the company, but Amazon is still his baby, he'll still be the most influential person in whichever room he finds himself at the company.
  • Mr Jassy, who founded AWS in 2003, nurtured this side-bet of Amazon's into a money-spinner - and became the obvious successor to Mr Bezos.And the way Mr Jassy has relentlessly developed AWS is strikingly similar to the way Mr Bezos went about building Amazon, and he is most certainly moulded in his predecessor's image.
  • Google and Microsoft got into the game later - and now offer similar services. However, there's a clear market leader in the field, and that's Amazon.According to one estimate, AWS accounts for about a third of worldwide cloud infrastructure spend.It's a long way away from where Amazon started - as an online shop selling books.
  • Mr Jassy has been at the company for 23 years, conducted plenty of interviews, and has been pretty open about what makes him tick. He also runs its most lucrative business - Amazon Web Services (AWS).
  • Andy Jassy is not a household name. He is, though, about to take on one of the biggest jobs in global business - replacing Jeff Bezos as chief executive of Amazon.Accompanying the appointment of a new football manager comes endless speculation. What will the style of play be? Are they the right fit at the club? Can they manage the big stars?
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  • From an IT perspective, employees will be coming back into the office with a host of new WFH habits, including some that they will want to keep.
  • 5. Re-adapting to office life
  • Clarke is working with mobile technology company Bullitt Group on a guide to employers on new habits to promote with employees in the workplace.
  • is how to make sure that all incoming equipment is clean, in the more physical sense of the term. 
  • 4. Germs – but not only the digital one
  • To mitigate the consequences of these bad habits, Watnik recommends proceeding under the assumption that all passwords have been compromised, and immediately mandate that all employees change the passwords they normally use.
  • More often than not, however, this means that employees have shared credentials to open the device, or altogether disabled the need for password authentication.
  • 3. Laptops at home: a free-for-all
  • One solution is to try and deal with the problem at the root, by raising awareness among employees that they should stay on top of their device's health, even in a seemingly less formal home environment.
  • To those devices that will make it back in the workplace, and be used to access company networks, it's wise to make sure all of the applicable software patches and updates have actually been installed
  • 2. Procrastinating the security updates
  • "Ban the use of personal laptops in the office during the 'return to work' transition, at least until all personal laptops have been inspected for such issues by IT personnel," he recommends.
  • 1. Mixing work and play
  • IT teams are going to see a 180-degree shift in focus: one towards making work safe again in the office. These are the bad habits that employees have adopted at home, and which will cause an IT nightmare back in the office – as well as top tips on how to work around them.
  • In fact, up to half of employees have admitted they are cutting corners when it comes to cybersecurity at home. With this in mind, IT professionals are anticipating a wave of unwanted problems making their way into office networks as soon as workers start coming in with unsafe devices. 
  • With organizations across the globe switching to remote working overnight, the majority of IT professionals report that their workloads have increased significantly – by as much as 37%, according to recent research. And unfortunately for support desks, this might only be the beginning. 
  • Going back to the office? Here are five major tech problems that lie ahead of you
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  • "Any algorithm that prioritizes engagement in determining what to promote doesn't just run the risk of giving priority to misinformation," Edelson said. "It will, in our current media landscape, also have a partisan skew."
  • Facebook has said in the past that news content makes up only a small portion of what most users see in their feeds, and in any case, since 2018, CEO Mark Zuckerberg has pushed to shift the Facebook experience toward "personal" interactions and away from engagement with media posts.
  • By comparison, sources identified as being in the political center and not deemed consistent misinformation-sharers had an average of just 79 weekly interactions for every 1,000 followers. Sources identified as frequent sharers of left-wing misinformation had even lower engagement — clocking in at roughly 60 interactions per 1,000 followers over the five-month period.
  • The researchers found that right-wing sources that NewsGuard and Media Bias / Fact Check had flagged as repeat misinformation sharers had an average weekly engagement rate of 426 interactions for every 1,000 followers. That's nearly 65% higher than what the researchers found for other right-wing sources not associated with misinformation, which had on average 259 weekly interactions per 1,000 followers.
  • "My takeaway is that, one way or another, far-right misinformation sources are able to engage on Facebook with their audiences much, much more than any other category," Edelson said. "That's probably pretty dangerous on a system that uses engagement to determine what content to promote."
  • By now it's well known that Facebook has a misinformation problem. The company has tried to address it in various ways, from labeling false claims to reducing its visibility in users' feeds. But a new study from researchers at New York University finds that not all misinformation on Facebook is created equal when you factor in political ideology.
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  • Instagram said it would roll out Instagram Lite globally soon. The company didn't provide a timeline for when Instagram Lite would be available on Apple phones, but Android devices are more widely uses in developing countries. 
  • Developed by Facebook employees in New York and Tel Aviv, Instagram Lite was being tested in India last year after the company shuttered an older version of the app released in 2018. The team that developed Instagram Lite focused on video and messaging and took out features that used a lot of data such as animations and augmented reality filters that can transform your face into different characters. Instagram also had to account for cultural differences, including the type of languages people spoke in a particular country and how familiar they were with using technology, Brown said.
  • "We wanted the Instagram experience to remain fast, high-quality, and reliable, irrespective of the device, platform, and network people are on," Tzach Hadar, director of product Management at Facebook Tel Aviv office, said in a blog post. 
  • The launch of Instagram Lite shows that Facebook is ramping up its efforts to attract more users in developing countries where people have weaker internet connections or can't afford the latest smartphones. Facebook has roughly 2.8 billion users who log into the site monthly and most are from outside the US. The rollout of Instagram Lite could also help bridge the digital divide because the app works in areas where access to data is limited.
  • Facebook-owned Instagram said Wednesday it's rolling out a version of the social media app in more than 170 countries that will make it easier for users in rural and remote areas to browse the platform on Android phones.
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  • Another customer had said: “It’s not just a ripped Scotch tape, it’s a ripped Scotch tape that has a similar shape and is right on top of a smiling mouth - Looks like a happy little cardboard Adolf to me.”Brand designer Studio LWD founder Laura Weldon said: "Brands change and tweak their logos all the time. "It reflects well on Amazon that they listened to their customers."It's clear they care about what their customers say and put the customer at the heart of what they do."That can only be a good thing."
  • Amazon said: “We designed the new icon to spark anticipation, excitement, and joy when customers start their shopping journey on their phone, just as they do when they see our boxes on their doorstep.”One customer had tweeted: “My parents use Amazon nearly every day. "They’re going to be lost for the next few days. "When they ask where Amazon’s gone, I’ll tell them to look for the cardboard Hitler."
  • Branding agency Coley Porter Bell chief executive Vicky Bullen said: “Unfortunately for Amazon, the visualisation of their parcel tape on the original logo will immediately be associated as a Hitleresque moustache, as that shape is forever embedded in our [subconscious] brains as such - not the best association for a brand that wants to create delight on the doorstep.”
  • Amazon has quickly changed its main shopping-app logo, after commentators said the recent redesign made it look like Adolf Hitler.Launched in January, the icon depicts a strip of blue tape over an Amazon "smile" logo.
4 annotations
  • And I'd also say if you compare it to a lot of other leisure pursuits, say like watching TV or something like that, I think it's a lot more of an active endeavour than that. It's a gateway. Many children start by playing games, like I did, and then getting into programming and then using this incredible tool, the computer, to create things.
  • Games is what was my first passion, if you like, and it's also what got me into AI indirectly.I started with playing chess for various England junior teams. And then, as part of that, we got a chess computer, very early on, that I used to train on. I think that started sparking off in in my mind ideas about how does the chess computer play chess and learning about that.
  • The plan behind DeepMind was always to try to build artificial intelligence in a very general way - so, use inspiration from the way the brain works, I'd studied neuroscience as well as computer science, and try and fuse the ideas that we know from the brain and bring some of those ideas across into algorithms.
  • Firstly, it was a fascinating use of games in science - and games is another one of my interests. But secondly, it kind of suggested to me that somehow these gamers had trained their intuition and their pattern-matching capabilities so that somehow they were able to do what brute-force computer systems couldn't at the time - and actually come up with the right shapes.
  • People speculated, very famously, in the 1970s, and earlier than that, that it should be possible to do that, in theory. And ever since then, for the last five decades, people have been trying to write programs and computational methods that would allow them to directly go from the sequence to the 3D structure. In essence, it's that problem that we solved with Alpha Fold now.
  • Proteins are essential to almost every function in your body. And they're essential to all organisms. And the function of a protein depends on its 3D shape.And there's been a long-standing more than 50-year-old grand challenge in science, which is can you go from the amino acid sequence - which is like a genetic sequence of letters that describes a protein - can you just from that one-dimensional letter sequence come up with a 3D structure?
  • Dr Andriy Kryshtafovych, from the University of California, who has scrutinised the project, has described the achievement as "truly remarkable"."Being able to investigate the shape of proteins quickly and accurately has the potential to revolutionise life sciences," he said.
  • Gaming inspired Demis Hassabis, the co-founder of DeepMind, to use artificial intelligence for a recent scientific breakthrough.
8 annotations
  • Smartphone shipments could plummet 11.9% this year to 1.2 billion, according to market researchers at IDC who see a “global demand-side problem.
  • Electronic Arts Chief Executive Blake Jorgensen told investors that sports fans were flocking to its “Madden,” “FIFA,” and “NHL” titles as substitutes for watching live sporting events
  • Netflix had its biggest quarter ever, but must compete with a host of new rivals that were in the works well before the pandemic, and the struggles of Quibi show that success is unlikely to be universal.
  • The key for both Slack and Zoom will be finding ways to convince free customers to pay up for these services even once employees start returning to the workplace again in large numbers, and battling a suddenly relevant Microsoft Teams offering, that attempts to combine their core features and another tech titan.
  • “Zoom” became a verb in the first 100 days of the pandemic, showing how software previously known largely to certain industries and finance nerds could explode into public consciousness when the need arises. Zoom Video Communications Inc. ZM, +2.03% saw 300 million daily meeting participants at its peak in recent weeks, more than 30 times its 2019 peak of roughly 10 million.
  • That leaves Apple. Consumers aren’t as likely to make big device purchases given financial uncertainty and temporary retail store closures, and that could continue to weigh on the iPhone maker’s business
  • Amazon and Microsoft especially seem secure, although Amazon will spend its operating profit in an attempt to bolster its operation
  • That extra $1 trillion-plus is the confidence investors have put into the continued resilience of the five Big Tech companies, which have established businesses in hot areas along with vast resources and customers and may only be rivaled by each other
  • Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Alphabet Inc. GOOGL, -1.26% GOOG, -1.04% and Facebook were worth a combined $4.8 trillion at the end of trading March 10, the day before WHO’s declared an official pandemic. On Wednesday, they closed at a combined valuation of roughly $6 trillion.
  • In the first quarter, sales in the information-technology sector of the S&P 500 SPX, +0.05% index rose 4.3%, less than the expected 6.7% but stronger than a slight contraction in the first quarter of 2019.
  • Data show a more nuanced shift in U.S. tech behavior, one that does benefit newer technologies that seem to be tailor-made for a population trapped at home with an internet connection: Endless streaming media, instant video chats with friends anywhere in the world, constant connections to coworkers.
  • One hundred days after the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a worldwide pandemic, tech stocks have bounced back along with companies’ supply chains and executives’ bright outlooks.
  • How the pandemic has changed tech in its first 100 days
13 annotations
  • I definitely wasn't alone in how I used Nextdoor to cope with the crisis. According to the company, the volume of posts last week in Texas was 471% higher than the previous week. Conversations with people asking for or offering help rose 400%, and keywords such as "power," "water," "firewood," "open stores," "pipes" and "heating" surged. Searches were also up 140%, and "plumber" was the most-searched term. Nextdoor, more than any other social media site, helped hundreds of thousands – maybe even millions -- of people suffering in Texas last week, including my family. I haven't stopped feeling utterly grateful.
  • By the way, I do have great neighbors on my own street who I could have turned to. But I didn't assume that any of them would know what the streets were like that morning. One of them saw my Nextdoor alert and reached out to offer help, but Mr. B was already on his way. Nextdoor has long been my favorite social network because it's just so practical. People post on Nextdoor about lost (and found) pets, coyotes, snakes, weird bugs, break-ins, scams, piano lessons, math tutors, owl houses and HVAC systems. They sell possessions or give them away for free. Over the past year, they've shared valuable information about coronavirus testing and vaccinations.
  • We thanked Mr. B profusely that day, thanked him again over Nextdoor and text, talked about him with awe repeatedly for days and donated to the local food bank in his honor. His only request of us was to "pay it forward." I hope we can follow his example and live up to that.
  • In terms of COVID-19, Mr. B told me that he and his wife had gotten their second dose of vaccine a couple of weeks back. At that moment, I realized that the vaccine may have given him the extra confidence he needed to decide to help us amid the pandemic. When we got to the duplex about 30 minutes later, I found my ex-husband sitting in his idling car, trying to stay warm. The snow had drifted over the sidewalk, and I walked through a foot of snow to get to my daughter's front door. Their home was ice-cold inside. The kids were shivering. The bearded dragon had only survived by lying against her owner's chest since 2:30 a.m.
  • People started replying almost immediately, suggesting certain routes or telling me that it was far too dangerous to drive. Then came a reply from someone who lives less than a mile from me. He was someone I'd never heard of or met before that day. He was a lifeline. "I think our Outback's able to handle it as it has AWD plus plenty of low gears. Please see private message. Thanks," wrote Mr. B, who asked me not to use his name for this story.
  • The rolling outages had failed. They were supposed to last less than an hour to help keep the Texas power grid up and running. But once an outage kicked in, it lasted for days. Austin wasn't alone. A massive snowstorm and record-breaking cold hit Texas over the long weekend, overwhelming the power grid and cutting power to millions of people for days. A widespread water crisis struck next as frozen pipes burst and water treatment plants failed. President Joe Biden declared a major disaster and authorized the federal government to provide aid. 
  • "Urgent alert. Road status in southwest Austin? I need to get from Escarpment/Davis to Westgate/Davis to get family members who haven't had power since 2:30 am. I am just afraid of getting stuck. Does anyone know which main roads are drivable?" I wrote.  
  • My ex-husband, David, had texted at 2:30 a.m. to tell me that his power was out as part of planned rolling outages. I texted back, asking when his power had returned. His response: It was still out. This was just before 9 a.m., and the temperature was in the low teens.
  • I was delighted last Monday to wake up to a beautiful 6 inches of snow blanketing my world. After all these years, my two teenagers would finally experience a day of real winter in Austin, Texas. I imagined the fun ahead of us.
  • My family members were stranded without power amid 6 inches of snow and freezing temperatures -- until Nextdoor and a stranger came to the rescue.
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  • The watchdog told the BBC it was used to track email openings, but not users' locations, adding: "We're working with our provider to remove the pixel functionality and this should be completed soon."The BBC asked some of the companies identified by Hey for their own response.
  • "Solely placing something in a privacy notice is not consent, and it is hardly transparent," said Pat Walshe from Privacy Matters. "The fact that tracking will take place and what that involves should be put in the user's face and involve them opting in."The law is clear enough, what we need is regulatory enforcement. Just because this practice is widespread doesn't mean it's correct and acceptable."
  • Use of tracking pixels is governed in the UK and other parts of Europe by 2003's Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (Pecr) and 2016's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).They require organisations to inform recipients of the pixels, and in most cases to obtain consent.
  • But a study by Princeton University also indicated the data gathered was sometimes linked to a users' cookies. This allows an individual's email address to be tied to their wider browsing habits, even as they move from one device to another. "The resulting links between identities and web history profiles belie the claim of 'anonymous' web tracking," the paper warned.In addition, trackers can also lead to personalised follow-ups.
  • "On average, every Hey customer receives 24 emails per day that attempt to spy on them," Mr Hansson said."The top 10% of users receive more than 50. "We're processing over one million emails a day and we're just a tiny service compared to the likes of Gmail, but that's north of 600,000 spying attempts blocked every day."
  • "It's not like there's a flag saying 'this email includes a spy pixel' in most email software," he added.Hey does offer such a facility, but users must pay an annual subscription.
  • Recipients do not need to click on a link or do anything to activate them beyond open an email they are embedded in.British Airways, TalkTalk, Vodafone, Sainsbury's, Tesco, HSBC, Marks & Spencer, Asos and Unilever are among UK brands Hey detected to be using them.
  • Emails pixels can be used to log:if and when an email is openedhow many times it is openedwhat device or devices are involvedthe user's rough physical location, deduced from their internet protocol (IP) address - in some cases making it possible to see the street the recipient is on
  • Hey's review indicated that two-thirds of emails sent to its users' personal accounts contained a "spy pixel", even after excluding for spam.Its makers said that many of the largest brands used email pixels, with the exception of the "big tech" firms.
  • The use of "invisible" tracking tech in emails is now "endemic", according to a messaging service that analysed its traffic at the BBC's request.
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  • And it taps into Qualcomm's latest radio frequency front end technology to cover all of the 5G airwaves deployed around the globe. When it comes to 5G, there are over 10,000 frequency band combinations, versus fewer than 20 in the early days of 4G. Qualcomm's technology allows companies to focus on industrial design and what a device's user interface is like instead of spending time dealing with the complexity of 5G airwaves. It manages all of the signals sent and received over the air and improves battery life. "The breadth of industries that the X65 Modem RF Platform actually touches is quite staggering," Malladi said. Qualcomm has made sure that it has "addressed what we think is where 5G is headed," he said.
  • Qualcomm's new Snapdragon X65 includes artificial intelligence tuning technology for the first time, which boosts a modem's performance. It can perform tasks like improving accuracy in detecting hand grips by 30% compared to the X60 and ultimately leads to faster data speeds, better coverage and longer battery life."It continues to learn and get better as you use your modem," Amon said. 
  • Along with the X65 are a number of other technologies to improve the connectivity in a device. The X65 pairs with Qualcomm's QTM545 antenna module, which helps improve mmWave signals. The technology is super fast but can travel only short distances, and it's easily blocked by trees, hands and other items. While it's favored by Verizon in the US, T-Mobile and most carriers in China and other regions of the world instead have rolled out sub-6GHz 5G, which doesn't go as fast but is more reliable. But mmWave is rolling out in more places around the globe. Along with the US, it's in Japan and Southeast Asia and likely will expand to South Korea, Germany, the UK and Australia, Qualcomm said. 
  • When it comes to fixed wireless access, Qualcomm on Tuesday unveiled its second-generation 5G Fixed Wireless Access Platform. It's powered by the X65 and features Qualcomm's second-generation QTM547 mmWave antenna module, which extends the range of 5G and contains eight antennas. The technology will let operators provide faster fixed broadband internet service in homes and businesses using their 5G network infrastructure. Verizon, for one, turned on its 5G fixed wireless service before it launched its mobile offering. 
  • "Once you get to 10Gbps in millimeter wave, you have a lot of enterprise applications now that ... can benefit from the speed," Cristiano Amon, Qualcomm's CEO-elect, said during a meeting with reporters ahead of the launch. That could include PCs in homes or robots in factories. The X65 "is a pretty big deal because we now have the technology in place to start thinking about ... the promise of all of those services of 5G beyond phones," Amon said. 
  • The initial hype around 5G seemed to be all about mobile. The super-fast wireless network will let us download gigabits of data in seconds and stream live video in ultra-high definition. We'll be able to do things that we could never do before on a mobile device -- and do them nearly instantaneously. But 5G has the ability to transform more than just phones. It has huge implications for robots, cars, health devices, retail and various other industries.
  • The heavily hyped 5G technology also runs between 10 and 100 times faster than today's typical 4G cellular connection, and it's much more responsive than 4G and Wi-Fi. 5G provides more capacity on the network, letting a lot more devices be connected at the same time. And it's more reliable than other wireless connections. 
  • "It means better coverage, better capacity for the network in general and overall better user experience," Durga Malladi, senior vice president and general manager of 4G and 5G at Qualcomm, said during a meeting with a small group of reporters ahead of the announcement. "You actually get to hit those peak rates more frequently." The X65 is also more powerful, which gives the signal a longer range, he said. 
  • The X65 has the same benefit. While it's unlikely that you'll regularly -- or maybe even ever -- see 10Gbps download speeds, you'll consistently see speeds that are magnitudes faster than your current 4G smartphone. That's partly because the X65 system has eight antennas instead of the four traditionally found in phones, something that will improve the connection.
  • With the X65, unveiled Tuesday, users will get a bump in speed but also see better battery life. Coverage will improve, latency will decrease and applications will be even more responsive than they are with Qualcomm's earlier X60 modem technology. And capacity will be "massive," letting more people on a network make reliable and crisp video calls with their doctors and face off against rivals in streaming games.
  • Qualcomm's new modem is here, it's blazing fast and it's not just for phones. The Snapdragon X65 5G Modem-RF System can download data at up to 10Gbps, and it will power high-end devices starting later this year. Those include premium smartphones, PCs, mobile hotspots, robots, fixed wireless access and private 5G networks set up by companies. 
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  • Romance fraud often starts on online dating websites but quickly switches to social media or old-fashioned texting, so there is no evidence of the scam.Sometimes the scammer is more subtle than just asking for money, seeking instead to garner personal information, which can later be used to commit identity fraud.
  • And increasingly, victims are at risk of prosecution as well as having their bank account emptied - as it is revealed that some scammers are now asking them to unwittingly launder money for criminal gangs.
  • The Covid-19 pandemic has added to the problem."The national lockdowns, and other restrictions on our social lives, implemented because of the coronavirus outbreak, have meant more people have been seeking companionship online and this has undoubtedly affected the number of reports we have seen," said Pauline Smith, head of Action Fraud."Romance scams can leave customers out of love and out of pocket," added Katy Worobec, managing director of economic crime at trade association UK Finance.
  • The advice suggests:online daters should not send any money, allow the other person to access their bank account, transfer money or take out a loan on the other person's behalfneither should they hand over copies of personal documents such as their passport or driving licenceor invest money on the other person's advicedo not receive or send parcels on the other person's behalfperform a reverse image search on a search engine to see if person is using fake imagescontact your bank immediately if you think you have fallen for a scam and report it to Action Fraud
  • According to UK Finance, there was a 20% increase in bank transfer fraud linked to romance scams in 2020 compared to 2019.And £68m was lost to such scams in 2020, said the UK's Action Fraud - another increase on the previous year.
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  • I've been very happy with the path that we followed. Would it have been worth more money? Almost certainly. But I've enjoyed the freedom of being able to start new things on my own and having my own path.I'm excited to have the opportunity to do Bebo again. It's very rare that you get to start something with a blank sheet of paper and rethink it from the ground up. You normally have so much legacy. In many ways it's harder to reboot a company than it is to start over.
  • When we first did Bebo, I spent 95% of my media time talking to journalists about privacy and bullying. And those issues are still obviously as relevant today. But I think one of the most damaging things has been the spread of misinformation and people sharing things similar to what their friends believe, which self-reinforces and doesn't allow for different perspectives to be put in front of people.
  • We're going to do some nods to the past, but you're not going to log in and see the original Bebo as it was. But what we want to do is go back a little bit to this idea of a profile. That you have an identity you sort of take pride in. That you can visit a profile and see things that aren't just the latest news articles being shared.
  • However, some of those familiar with the original Bebo are sceptical about its prospects."It's probably brave to launch a new social network in this climate when there are concerns about potential harms from misinformation spread on social media, so I hope Bebo will take its responsibilities to look after its members and their data seriously," says Kate Bevan, computing editor at Which?."But there's also something delightfully optimistic about this plan."
  • "We're calling it live social networking - when you're logged into Bebo, you are aware of which other friends are online," he says, explaining his plan from his home in the British Virgin Islands."You can interact with them in real-time. You can comment on their photo on their profile. They'll get notified, they'll come to the photo, and they may even have a conversation under the photo."It's an experiment, we'll see how it how it actually does. But we think it's a more exciting way of actually connecting."
  • Bebo - an acronym for "blog early, blog often" - was once the most popular network in the UK, as well as being big in Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. At its peak it had more than 40 million members.
  • Bebo's co-founder plans to relaunch the social network with a focus on profiles and "real-time" interactions between friends rather than the news feeds at the core of Twitter and Facebook.
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  • “Young people are among the hardest hit by the pandemic, so it is more important than ever that they can access support with their mental health during this critical time in their lives.”
  • “The transition from childhood to adolescence can be turbulent, and the findings of this report underline why addressing and supporting young people’s mental health will only become more crucial as the impact of the pandemic unfolds,” said Jonathan Townsend, UK chief executive of The Prince’s Trust.
  • “Participation in activities and sports will have fallen considerably due to school closures and lockdown, likely adversely affecting mental health and wellbeing,” it added.It also made several recommendations, including a £650m package to schools for wellbeing funding after the pandemic and an increase in mental health teaching in schools.
  • Heavy social media use was linked to negative wellbeing and self-esteem, regardless of a young person's mental state, with more girls experiencing feelings of depression and hopelessness.“Those who feel worse may turn to social media for solace or community,” Dr Amy Orben, research fellow at Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge, said of the research.
  • According to the research:One in three girls was unhappy with their personal appearance by the age of 14, compared with one in seven at the end of primary schoolThe number of young people with probable mental illness has risen to one in six, up from one in nine in 2017Boys in the bottom set at primary school had lower self-esteem at 14 than their peers
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  • Biden didn't say much about data privacy on the campaign trail. During his years as a US senator and as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, however, he introduced and co-sponsored several pieces of legislation to make it easier for the FBI and law enforcement to monitor communications, including the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act, which allows law enforcement to surveil communications over the internet, including voice over IP calls and other internet traffic. 
  • Democrats across the board have been critical of Trump's tariff war with China, which has affected imports on a wide range of tech products. Tariffs are taxes paid by importers on goods arriving from foreign countries, and Trump has used them to pressure the Chinese government on broader trade issues. Two rounds of tariffs, including a 15% tariff on products like phones, laptops and tablets, have gone into effect. Another round was avoided in a "phase one" trade deal. 
  • During his campaign, Biden called rebuilding the middle class in America "the moral obligation of our time." He sees revitalizing rural America as a cornerstone of that effort. A big part of his rural economic development strategy is investing $20 billion in getting broadband access to communities that don't have it. He's also called for partnering with municipal utilities to bring fiber broadband connections to communities across rural America."High-speed broadband is essential in the 21st century economy," Biden's rural policy reads. "At a time when so many jobs and businesses could be located anywhere, high-speed internet access should be a great economic equalizer for rural America, not another economic disadvantage."
  • But Biden's track record tells a different story. When he was a senator, he didn't co-sponsor or support net neutrality legislation, including the 2007 Internet Freedom Preservation Act. Other prominent Democrats, including then-Sens. Obama and Hillary Clinton, were co-sponsors of that legislation, as was Sanders.Biden also has a close relationship with Comcast executives, who've lobbied against strict net neutrality regulations. Comcast Senior Vice President David Cohen hosted Biden's first fundraiser after he announced his bid for president.
  • Still, it's likely that net neutrality will come back en vogue under Biden, especially since Democrats won two run-off Senate seats in Georgia. These victories in the Senate essentially split the votes in the Senate 50-50 with Vice President Harris as the tie-breaking vote. This should make it much easier for Biden to push through his cabinet picks in the Senate and other positions that need Senate approval, such as a new head of the Federal Communications Commission. With a 3-2 Democratic majority on the FCC, it's expected the agency will push to reinstate Obama-era protections.
  • The largest tech companies say they're onboard with some reforms to Section. 230 -- with some caveats. At a Senate Commerce Committee hearing in October, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged that social media platforms "have responsibilities and it may make sense for there to be liability for some of the content that is on the platform." At the same hearing, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey suggested regulations that could require companies to make their moderation processes more transparent. He also said companies could develop clear ways for users to appeal their decisions on content moderation and give users more choices in how algorithms sort their content. 
  • There isn't much that Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill agree on. Reforming Section 230, a decades old law, is on that short list. The law protects Google, Facebook, Twitter and other tech giants from lawsuits over the content their users post on their platforms. Last year, Zuckerberg, Pichai and Dorsey appeared before the Senate Commerce Committee to discuss the law, although much of the talk focused on lawmaker complaints rather than substantive reforms. Biden has been an outspoken critic of Section 230, which is part of the 1996 Communications Decency Act. 
  • One of the biggest issues facing tech companies under President Biden will be reforms to antitrust law meant to rein in the biggest tech companies. A scathing 449-page congressional report detailing abuses of market power by Google, Apple, Amazon and Facebook likely foreshadows troubles ahead for tech firms under a Biden administration and a Democrat-controlled Congress. The report put together by a panel from the House Judiciary Committee laid out a road map for Congress to put the brakes on the dominance of the nation's four largest tech companies. 
  • Even though tech policy didn't dominate election issues, Biden's presence in the Oval Office over the next four years will have a major influence on the sector, including infrastructure policy on broadband deployment and national security issues involving China. The president and his team will also play a role in how to handle the growth and influence of social media giants. Facebook, Twitter and other tech companies are already feeling the heat from politicians on both sides of the political aisles. 
  • The pandemic has pushed technology issues, including net neutrality, rural broadband and online privacy, to the sideline. But the violence at the Capitol -- fueled by disinformation spreading on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter -- has many lawmakers looking at ways to rein in the tech giants. 
  • The biggest challenge facing Biden as he takes office is the COVID-19 pandemic, which has already claimed the lives of nearly 400,000 Americans. Biden has said his top priority will be vaccinating Americans against the deadly virus. The goal is to administer 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses in his first 100 days in office. With current vaccines requiring two shots, that would cover 50 million Americans.  
  • Joe Biden will take the oath of office as president of the United States on Wednesday, unseating Donald Trump, who since November has falsely claimed that the election was rigged. Biden's inauguration will come exactly two weeks after the violent attack on the US Capitol, when a mob of Trump supporters stormed the building and threatened members of Congress, who were gathered to certify the election for Biden. 
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  • The New York Times article also references an entrepreneur who lost about 800 bitcoins when a colleague reformatted a laptop containing the private keys to his wallet.And in 2013, a Welsh man desperately searched a landfill site after throwing away a computer hard drive containing 7,500 bitcoins. At the time worth more than £4m, this would now be valued at more than £250m.
  • Mr Thomas would not be the first potential Bitcoin millionaire to be locked out of their fortune.Currently, about $140bn worth of Bitcoin is lost or left in wallets that cannot be accessed, according to cryptocurrency-data company Chainanalysis.
  • Mr Stamos, who is now professor at the Stanford Internet Observatory, tweeted Mr Thomas: "Um, for $220m in locked-up Bitcoin, you don't make 10 password guesses but take it to professionals to buy 20 IronKeys and spend six months finding a side channel or uncapping."I'll make it happen for 10%. "Call me."
  • He told the New York Times: "The whole idea of being your own bank - let me put it this way, do you make your own shoes?""The reason we have banks is that we don't want to deal with all those things that banks do."
  • Mr Thomas, who was born in Germany but lives in San Francisco, was given 7,002 bitcoins as payment for making a video explaining how cryptocurrency works more than a decade ago. At the time, they were worth a few dollars each.He stored them in an IronKey digital wallet on a hard drive. And he wrote the password on a piece of paper he has lost.
  • That's the situation for programmer Stefan Thomas but the stakes are higher than most - the forgotten password will let him unlock a hard drive containing $240m (£175m) worth of Bitcoin.
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  • "Once you do it once, it is much harder to resist doing it again," she said.
  • "On the other hand, because it does impact speech, I think we should think about that as being troubling [if] the underlying service providers ... render it impossible for those alternatives to operate," she said.
  • Gab, another controversial alternative social network, was banned from Apple and Google's app stores and various payment processors after it was reported that the suspected shooter behind 2018's Pittsburgh synagogue massacre had a profile on the app and expressed virulently anti-Semitic views. (At the time, Gab said it had been unfairly "smeared" and was "under attack" for defending free speech.) It has boasted of having self-built much of the infrastructure it now operates on, making it theoretically immune from what's happening to Parler."There is a broader question that all of this raises about the fact that control over the speech of billions of people is in the hands ... of only a few corporate companies, and what does that mean," said Fallow of the Knight First Amendment Institute.
  • In response to the crackdown, Parler sued Amazon on Monday, alleging an antitrust violation, breach of contract and interference with the company's business relationships with users. "Without AWS, Parler is finished as it has no way to get online," said the complaint, which also claimed that "Parler had removed everything AWS had brought to its attention and more."
  • "I see it as a shift from Silicon Valley cracking down on a lot of other violent groups around the world, like Islamist extremists, to cracking down on white domestic extremists," said Daphne Keller, platform regulation director at Stanford's Cyber Policy Center. But, she said, "when you take down a whole platform, then you're affecting all of its users, including presumably some who weren't violating the law or Amazon's policies. It's a very, very blunt instrument when a service provider like AWS takes down a whole service."
  • Amazon, for example, said it took action because it's seen a "steady increase" in violent content on Parler's platform, which violates the AWS terms of service. But the fact that these companies took such drastic steps raises some potential concerns.
  • "It was the nuclear option," said Katie Fallow, senior staff attorney at Columbia University's Knight First Amendment Institute. Fallow said tech companies reacted with such strong actions, including the ban on Trump's account, in response to the "extraordinary circumstance" of violence at the Capitol.
  • Citing insufficient content moderation policies, Google removed Parler, an alternative social network favored by the far right, from its app store on Friday in the wake of the deadly riot at the Capitol last week. The next day, Apple followed suit, pointing to the same reason. Then the biggest blow: Amazon removed Parler from its cloud hosting service, Amazon Web Services, effectively making it homeless on the web.
  • Twitter's decision to ban President Donald Trump from its platform on Friday sent shock waves through the political and tech worlds. But a different tech crackdown that began later that night and continued through the weekend arguably has the potential to shift how people think about the internet and the companies that power it.
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  • Another deepfake, this time of the Queen, rounded out 2020. Channel 4 created a likeness of Her Majesty wearing a coronavirus-shaped brooch, cracking jokes about her family and showing off TikTok-style dance moves. The four-minute skit prompted more than 200 complaints to the media regulator Ofcom arguing it was in poor taste. But while Deepfakes obviously have the power to scandalise, what they have yet to do is fool people in large numbers. For now, misleadingly-edited videos remain more commonplace and problematic. But at the pace deepfake technology is evolving, it's possible it will pose a greater threat in 2021 and beyond.
  • While Elon Musk didn't make this list, Hyperloop - a futuristic pod-based form of travel that he helped develop - did. Virgin Hyperloop's plan to turn the concept into reality took a step forward when it transported two members of its staff within a stretch of a 0.5km (0.3 mile) vacuum tube, achieving a maximum speed of 172km/h (107mph). Despite the technical achievement, the project still has doubters, who ask how it could ever transport enough passengers to be economically viable. The project's chief technology officer later acknowledged the criticism but noted: "If you look at the Wright brothers' plane, that was a single-seater... you've got to start somewhere."
  • Towards the end of the year, a "deepfake bot" came to light that was supposedly capable of creating computer-generated nudes based on photos of clothed women submitted via Telegram's chat app. Except that tests carried out by the BBC found it to be somewhat lacking. "Our results included a photo of a woman with a belly button on her diaphragm," read our report. Even so, the Italian Data Protection Authority launched an investigation. The case, however, highlighted the potential for this emerging tech to be used as a form of abuse.
  • The ups and downs of the UK's coronavirus apps have been one of this year's biggest running stories. So, the revelation that some police officers had been told not to use England and Wales' NHS Covid-19 app shortly after its launch drew attention. Within 24 hours of the story's publication, the National Police Chiefs' Council issued new guidance saying staff could use it on their personal phones after all. Despite its rocky beginnings, the app has been a success of sorts having been downloaded more than 20.7 million times to date. But we don't know how many people have since uninstalled or turned it off, nor how many have ignored its self-isolate orders. It remains an open question whether a privacy-centric approach made these and other apps based on Apple and Google's design more or less successful than they might otherwise have been.
  • A posh treat turned into payments card nightmare for customer of London's Ritz hotel. Scammers got hold of a list of people booked into its restaurant and called them to "confirm" their card details. The calls seemed convincing as the perpetrators not only knew when the bookings were for but also managed to spoof the establishment's real phone number. They then tried to use the blagged card details to make purchases at the retailer Argos. The Ritz said it suspected a data breach at the time. It did not respond to a request for comment about the outcome of its investigation.
  • The UK's decision to ban Huawei from future involvement in its 5G network dealt a body blow to the Chinese telecoms giant Huawei. US sanctions had made the company's future precarious, and gave Boris Johnson's government the cover it needed to reverse a previous decision to let UK networks use its equipment. Sweden followed with a ban of its own in October, and more recently Germany paved the way for local restrictions with a new law that lets vendors be blocked over security concerns. But that's not to count the firm out. Earlier this month, China announced plans to install 600,000-plus 5G cell towers in 2021 to boost use of 5G across its major cities, and Huawei is expected to reap many of the orders.
  • Controversial figure Katie Hopkins was permanently kicked off Twitter's platform after years of posts many had found to be offensive. The platform didn't highlight a particular post, but said abuse and hateful conduct had no place on its service. But that wasn't quite the end of Hopkins' relationship with the platform. In October, she used her Instagram account to apologise for a past tweet in which she had wrongly claimed police officers had been attacked outside a London mosque, when the incident had in fact occurred streets away. The public mea culpa was issued after the mosque had threatened legal action. Ms Hopkins would have been mindful she had previously lost a costly libel case over tweets about the food writer Jack Monroe.
  • It almost seems quaint for it to be newsworthy that Twitter had hidden one of President Trump's tweets. But the social network set a precedent in May, by labelling a post in which the US leader had written "when the looting starts, the shooting starts" about the National Guard being sent to street protests in Minneapolis. Social media's handling of the President's posts has been a source of controversy with Republicans claiming it showed evidence of bias, while Democrat lawmakers suggested the tech firms had not gone far enough. Twitter's Jack Dorsey and Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg testified to US lawmakers about the subject multiple times. And while Joe Biden may have won the US election, the threat of removal of some of social media's legal privileges - Section 230 to those in the know - still looks to be on the cards.
  • The pandemic has provided fuel to online conspiracy theories and disinformation. One of the leading figures spreading them was the former sports broadcaster David Icke. His appearance in an interview livestreamed on YouTube prompted the Google-owned service to ban all conspiracy videos falsely linking Covid-19 to 5G networks. Other crackdowns on tackling harmful posts about the virus followed on various social media platforms. UK watchdog Ofcom later sanctioned London Live's TV channel for broadcasting a follow-up interview with Icke in which his claims were "largely unchallenged". And then Facebook, followed by YouTube and finally Twitter all kicked Icke off their platforms. Some saw this as a victory for common sense, but others worried about the major platforms' tilt towards more censorship.
  • Days after the UK's first coronavirus lockdown began, it was announced that Netflix would reduce the bitrate of its video streams to avoid putting networks under strain. It had actually been asked by the EU to stop streaming in anything but standard definition, but took this lesser step as a compromise. Disney+, Apple, Amazon and YouTube all followed with similar measures of their own - which have all since been reversed. Most users probably never noticed the dip in picture quality. But the real story of the pandemic was how well networks coped with increased demand - even when later in the year there were record spikes thanks to people downloading games for their new PlayStations and Xboxes, and Amazon streaming the Autumn Nations Cup rugby.
  • Apple's sales are so huge that it would take it less than an hour to recoup the €25m (£22m; $30m) fine imposed by France for deliberately slowing down its older iPhone models. But the point of the penalty was always to embarrass the US tech giant rather than financially wound it. Apple's defence was that it had taken the step to prolong the life of the handsets and avoid unexpected shutdowns, but the lesson was to be open with the public. Later in the year, the firm agreed to pay out a larger sum to 34 US states to settle their own complaint about the matter. And Apple faces further legal action from the Euroconsumers advocacy group, which is pursuing it for further payouts in Belgium, Spain, Italy and Portugal.
  • Calls by European politicians for a universal charging method led to speculation that Apple might ditch its Lightning connector cable. Rumours persisted for months that the iPhone 12 range would move to USB-C to match the firm's laptops. But the handsets held onto the eight-year-old port, although their iPad Air stablemate did make the switch. In any case, with wi-fi 6 and the firm's MagSafe accessories meaning data transfers and charging can be done "wirelessly" faster than before, the hot money is that Apple might simply do away with ports on its handsets altogether.
  • The coronavirus pandemic dominated tech - like all else - with many of us spending more time than ever in front of screens. "You're on mute," became a catchphrase, and during lockdowns people even began dating via video chat - but despite the internet helping keep us in touch, many still felt very alone.
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  • "At this time, we believe this was, and continues to be, an intelligence-gathering effort," the latest statement says. This is significant since it suggests no evidence has been found that this was preparatory activity for a more destructive cyber-attack which might switch off systems. This may limit the US response since espionage operations do not breach the cyber norms the US itself promotes (largely because it too carries out such intelligence-gathering operations against other nations).
  • President-elect Joe Biden has previously said it was important to take "meaningful steps" to hold those responsible to account. It is not yet clear, though, what that might involve. While some US politicians suggested the breach might even be compared to an "act of war", most cyber-experts disputed this and the US intelligence community has now played down suggestions that it could have had destructive impact.
  • "This is a serious compromise that will require a sustained and dedicated effort to remediate," the statement said. Many organisations are having to scour their systems for signs that they may have been compromised.The incident sent shockwaves across the US partly because the breach was undiscovered for many months and was potentially far-reaching in terms of who it might have affected. It also suggested a degree of sophistication and stealth which was widely seen as a trademark of hackers from the SVR, Russia's foreign intelligence agency.
  • They say work is still going on to understand the scope of the incident, which appears to have been aimed at gathering intelligence and which they say is "ongoing" a month after details first emerged.
  • US intelligence agencies have said they believe Russia was behind the "serious" cyber compromise revealed in December.President Trump had previously suggested China might have been behind the hack, although other members of his administration had pointed the finger at Moscow.
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  • The White House unveiled an executive order in November banning U.S. investment in alleged Chinese military companies including China’s top chipmaker SMIC and oil giant CNOOC. Last month, the Commerce Department added dozens of Chinese companies, including Chinese drone manufacturer SZ DJI Technology Co Ltd, to a trade blacklist.
  • Reuters reported in November that the U.S. State Department had submitted a proposal to add Ant Group to a trade blacklist in order to deter U.S. investors from taking part in its lucrative initial public offering. But the Commerce Department, which oversees the blacklist, shelved the proposal after Alibaba Group Holding Inc President Michael Evans urged Ross to reject the bid.Ant is China’s dominant mobile payments company, offering loans, payments, insurance and asset management services via mobile apps. It is 33% owned by Alibaba and controlled by Alibaba founder Jack Ma, but is currently unavailable for American users.
  • Despite the 45-day time line laid out by the order, the Commerce Department plans to act before Jan. 20 to identify prohibited transactions, another U.S. official told Reuters.
  • China will take necessary measures to safeguard the legitimate rights of companies in view of the Trump order, foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a regular briefing on Wednesday, adding that the U.S. was abusing its national power and unreasonably suppressing foreign companies.
  • Such data collection “would permit China to track the locations of federal employees and contractors, and build dossiers of personal information,” the document adds.
  • banned under the directive within 45 days and targets Tencent Holdings Ltd’s QQ Wallet and WeChat Pay as well.The order also names CamScanner, SHAREit, Tencent QQ, VMate which is published by Alibaba Group subsidiary UCWeb, and Beijing Kingsoft Office Software’s WPS Office.
  • “By accessing personal electronic devices such as smartphones, tablets, and computers, Chinese connected software applications can access and capture vast swaths of information from users, including sensitive personally identifiable information and private information,” the executive order states.
  • The order argues that the United States must take “aggressive action” against developers of Chinese software applications to protect national security.
  • WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed an executive order banning transactions with eight Chinese software applications, including Ant Group’s Alipay mobile payment app, the White House said, escalating tensions with Beijing two weeks before President-elect Joe Biden takes office.
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  • "I think TikTok sees that and wants to distinguish itself from Huawei," he added.
  • In May, it hired former Disney executive Kevin Mayer as its CEO, and it has repeatedly said that its data centers are located entirely outside of China where that data is not subject to Chinese law.
  • said firms must choose between giving up on part of the world, or decentralizing their operations to such a point that the company is essentially two or more different entities.
  • For the tech companies stuck trying to navigate this world, there are no easy options.
  • The advancement of technology in other parts of the world also suggests that there are "evolving, multiple playbooks" beyond the rivalry between the United States and China
  • Washington has for more than a year been pressuring its allies to keep the Chinese company's telecommunications equipment out of their 5G networks
  • "Both the US and China have demonstrated they're willing to weaponize global trade and supply chains," the analysts added.
  • As the relationship between the world's two largest economies deteriorates, several analysts warned that the fallout will have major implications for every global power, along with the tech companies that operate across their borders.
  • Eurasia Group, in a report published earlier this year that noted how Chinese President Xi Jinping is calling for the country to break its technological dependence on the United States.
  • The United States has also imposed sanctions on prominent Chinese tech firms and taken steps to limit Beijing's access to America's vast capital markets.
  • The Trump administration has accused China of stealing US technology, an issue central to the damaging trade war that has colored the relationship between the two since 2018.
  • "Made in China 2025," Beijing's ambitious plan to shed the country's reliance on foreign tech by spending billions of dollars in areas such as wireless communications, microchips and robotics
  • While IBM (IBM) and Microsoft (MSFT) were driving American innovation in the 1980s, China was laying down the foundation for its Great Firewall — a massive censorship mechanism that shuts out content widely available elsewhere on the interne
  • "My impression is that the tech companies are only now waking up to the fact that life in the future is going to be a lot less globalized,"
  • That review comes after the United States, which has repeatedly targeted Huawei, imposed sanctions on the company that could prevent other firms from supplying it with the chipsets it needs to build its next-generation technology.
  • recent tensions over national security have pushed their governments and businesses to reconsider those partnerships.
  • "It is becoming harder to be a truly global tech platform," said Dipayan Ghosh, the co-director of the Digital Platforms and Democracy Project at the Harvard Kennedy Schoo
  • Then, on Monday, US authorities said they would look at banning the app because they consider it a possible threat to national security.
  • The first major hit came last month, when TikTok was blocked in India after a heated border clash with China left at least 20 Indian soldiers dead.
  • A new world war over technology
20 annotations
  • The Apple Watch Series 6 will also likely bring more native health capabilities. Apple has increasingly stepped into the medical research field with the watch, partnering with hospitals and research agencies to study heart health and women's health. The Series 6 is rumored to get SPO2 tracking, which would allow the watch to measure your blood oxygen levels, similar to how it does heart rate. Smart watches from FitBit and Garmin have a similar capability already.
  • 9. Voice MemosLike on the iPhone, you can use the Voice Memos app on your Apple Watch to record personal notes and things to remember while on the go. The voice memos you record on the watch will automatically sync to any other iOS devices where you're signed in with the same Apple ID. 
  • 8. Walkie-TalkieThe Walkie-Talkie app lets you use your watch as a walkie-talkie to chat with another person wearing an Apple Watch. You press a button to talk, and release it to listen to the reply. The app isn't available in all regions, and both participants need to have connectivity through a Bluetooth connection to the iPhone, Wi-Fi or cellular. You also have to accept an invitation to connect with someone through the app -- they can't just start talking to you. 
  • 7. CameraYou can't take a picture with your watch itself. But with the Camera app, your watch can act as a remote control for your iPhone's camera. Use it to help take selfies or start recording on your phone across the room, so you can finally get everyone in that big group shot. 
  • 6. RemoteIf you have an Apple TV, you can use your watch as another remote control -- assuming both devices are connected to the same Wi-Fi network. Use the Remote app to swipe around on the watch face and move through the Apple TV menu options, and play or pause shows. 
  • 5. BreatheThe Breathe app helps you remember to take a few minutes each day to do just that: breathe (which might be especially handy after checking that News app). You can set or mute Breathe reminders, or just open the app when you want some help pausing and relaxing. You'll see an animation that encourages you to breathe in and out along with it, for 1 to 5 minutes. You can also check your heart rate during those breath sessions. 
  • 4. NewsThe News app will help you keep up with current events on the fly, showing you stories that it selects based on your interests. However, it's not available in all areas. 
  • 3. ECGIf you have an Apple Watch Series 4 or later, you have an electrical heart rate sensor that works with the ECG app to take an electrocardiogram (sometimes called an EKG by cardiologists). You'll also need an iPhone 6S or later, and both the phone and the watch will need to be on the latest version of iOS and WatchOS, respectively. It's also not available in all regions. 
  • 2. Cycle TrackingWomen can use the Cycle Tracking app to log details about your menstrual cycle, including flow information and symptoms such as headaches or cramps. Using that data, the app can alert you to when it predicts your next period or fertile window is about to start. 
  • 1. NoiseIf you have an Apple Watch Series 4 or later, you can use the Noise app to measure the ambient sound in your environment. If the decibel level has risen to a point where your hearing could be affected, the app can notify you with a tap on your wrist. 
  • We celebrated the fifth anniversary of the Apple Watch in April, and in September we welcomed the Watch Series 6 and Watch SE to the wearable family. The Watch's new features, which include blood oxygen level monitoring, signal that the device originally intended to be an iPhone for your wrist, chock-full of third-party apps, has transitioned into a health and fitness tracker. And its native apps have proved more useful than any app you can download.
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  • We are partnering closely with Apple and are excited about the opportunities that ProRaw can afford our mutual customers," a representative for Adobe said. "We don't have any specifics that we can share at this time."
  • I also like how Apple implemented ProRaw into the native Camera app. By default, ProRaw is turned off. And that's smart because not everyone who owns a 12 Pro or 12 Pro Max is going to want to use it. But if you want to enable it, go into Settings > Camera > Formats and under a new Photo Capture section there's a toggle to turn Apple ProRaw on and off. Then, open the default Camera app and in the top right corner, you'll see a new Raw button for quickly switching between ProRaw photos and JPEG (or HEIC) photos.
  • Take a look at the sky in the ProRaw version. There was enough info in the file to bring the highlights back from white into a blue sky. There is much less image noise in the shadows compared to the raw version and there's increased sharpness in details like the bricks in the top left and rocks on the bottom left.
  • ProRaw's larger file size contains much more image data compared to a standard raw file. A ProRaw file is built on a foundation of computational photography from Smart HDR, Deep Fusion and Night Mode, which can result in a picture with significantly less image noise, better dynamic range and sharper detail and textures.
  • ProRaw photos can be taken using the default Camera app. Next, ProRaw files are large. For example, I took a photo of the same subject using each file format on the iPhone 12 Pro Max. The HEIC file was 5.2 megabytes, the JPEG was 6.8MB, the raw photo (taken with the Moment app) was 16.5MB and the ProRaw photo was a whopping 34.7MB.
  • ProRaw works on all four iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max cameras. It uses the widely supported Adobe Digital Negative, or DNG, file format and contains information for 12-bit color and support for 14 stops of dynamic range. The approach Apple took with ProRaw is similar to how Google saves raw files built from HDR Plus on Pixel phones. ProRaw files are created from multiple image frames and contain the data from the best parts of those photos. Deep Fusion analyzes those images pixel by pixel to create a deep photo file. The A14 Bionic does all of this analysis in real time without causing shutter lag.
  • With the release of iOS 14.3, the iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max get Apple's new raw photo format called ProRaw. The new file lets you have the customization of a raw file built atop the iPhone's computational photo smarts.
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  • We'll likely get that answer in the next couple months as Tesla plans to roll out its new leasing experience. According to the support page, all the changes will begin in early 2021. If Model 3 and Model Y owners do get the option to buy their leased car, it opens up new questions about CEO Elon Musk's promise of a robotaxi fleet in the future. Musk said the fleet would be "functionally ready" in 2020. While that phrase is certainly open for interpretation, we're nowhere near a fleet of self-driving Teslas ready to pick up passengers, though the company's Full Self-Driving beta launched on a limited scale.
  • What's unclear is if this language applies to all four Tesla vehicles currently on sale. The blog reported Model S, Model X, Model 3 and Model Y lessees all received identical emails. Model S and Model X owners have always had the option of buying out their lease, unlike the other two EVs. Tesla does not operate a public relations department to field requests for comment, so we'll need to hold tight on a final answer.
  • According to an emailed document Electrek reported on Thursday, it sounds like the Model 3 and Model Y lessees will actually have the option of purchasing their leased EV after all. The email, which the site says was sent to all Tesla lessess, details a bundle of new changes coming to a revamped Tesla "lease experience," and mentions new online management options that include the ability to buy the leased vehicle.
  • Meanwhile, Tesla is working to build its Austin, Texas Cybertruck factory and its German Gigafactory as well as ramp up Chinese production of its Model Y crossover. It also continues to develop its "Full Self-Driving" technology and new battery technologies as outlined in its Battery Day presentation earlier this year.
  • This comment came about as part of a discussion on Apple's allegedly renewed effort to build its own electric and autonomous car, as reported originally by Reuters. The Apple car is said to be destined for a 2025 launch and uses lithium-iron-phosphate batteries.
  • It's no secret that the Model 3's development and production ramp were difficult for Tesla. It was also a tough time for Tesla CEO Elon Musk. We know this because he talked about how difficult it was on a fairly regular basis. We didn't realize that Musk approached Apple boss Tim Apple (sorry, Cook) to see if he might be interested in purchasing Tesla during that time.
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  • Sport psychologist Dr Jill Owen said: "At a time of inconsistency and uncertainty, exercise has allowed positive routines to be continued or created with a healthy focus and a sense of community. "Apps have enabled a sense of 'being in this together', through the pursuit of similar goals, communal encouragement and sharing of ideas."It can be hard to exercise when mental health is depleted, but others in a community can share experiences and encourage other ways of getting help alongside making healthier lifestyle changes. "At a time when physical and mental health is threatened, communal support has been and continues to be a lifeline for many."
  • "At a time when health is everyone's top priority, the Covid-19 outbreak is ushering in an age where people can work out wherever and whenever they want," Les Mills Media chief executive Jean-Michel Fournier said ."We believe gyms will always be the pinnacle of live fitness experiences."And I'm sure everyone will be desperate for social workouts once lockdowns are lifted. "But the digital fitness boom is helping to break down barriers to fitness for people you might not typically see in the gym."And that's really exciting."
  • At the start of lockdown, she found out she was pregnant, as well as looking after two toddlers."Free time went out the window, so we exercised together," she said."I carried them on my back for strength workouts."Strava was brilliant not just for my logging but seeing what all my running friends were doing."It definitely made me feel more connected to them."Exercise has been crucial for me to cope with the pandemic, just as it is life in general."
  • Co-founder Michael Horvath said: "During a challenging year, it has been a privilege to connect athletes to what motivates them and help them find their personal best - from solitary virtual marathons to midday walks while working from home."Through it all, athletes from around the world cheered each other on, proving that every effort counts and people keep people active."
  • And 44% of users completed solo marathons - despite the major organised events around the world being cancelled.
  • "Covid-19 has presented many people with the unique opportunity to exercise more, because, practically, people have fewer reasons not to," Dr Charlotte Hilton, of the British Psychological society, said. "If nothing else, exercise outdoors provides us with some welcome relief from spending so much time indoors during lockdown."However, because of the social restrictions that Covid-19 brings, more people may be turning to online exercise communities and apps to enhance their connectedness to other like-minded people who enjoy exercise."
  • Fitness apps have seen a steep rise in users during the pandemic.Strava, which now has 73 million users, said each month this year an average of two million had been registering with its app for the first time.
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  • "We really are in a mental health crisis right now," Low said. "It's hard to say when we weren't, when 1 out of 5 adults has a mental health disorder. There's definitely not enough resources right now, critically and so clinicians really need more resources."
  • Or, as the team put it in the study, "it is all the more important to identify subpopulations most impacted by the pandemic to triage resource allocation in an informed manner."
  • Reading actual posts from some of these groups revealed comments like "I can't help but feel like this is the perfect time to fast or restrict since no one's monitoring my meals. No, nobody at school noticing I'm skipping lunch for the fourth day in a row."
  • The team also found that health-related anxiety crept into all the subreddits they looked at, across the board. Going further, Low talked about how other analysis they did looked into whether these subreddits were becoming more similar to each other through the pandemic, and becoming more similar to the health anxiety subreddit. "It really, really highlighted once again that this kind of took over a lot of people's lives and they were wondering how to go about and adjust their daily life. Because of COVID," Talker said.
  • Along those lines, they used the same technique to look at posts before and after the pandemic, finding the emergence of clusters around topics like panic attacks. Clusters for suicidality and loneliness more than doubled in size, in terms of number of posts. 
  • Using an approach called clustering, the researchers also looked for any themes in conversation that might have emerged, regardless of subreddit. For example, they found people were talking about stress relating to substance use and alcohol consumption across different subreddits, not necessarily exclusively on the subreddits on addiction and alcoholism. 
  • "I think we came to realize pretty quickly that studying mental health on Reddit was itself a really interesting thing, because we were able to learn through this project more about Reddit, as a forum for support that is anonymous and that is accessible in ways that maybe traditional mental health care isn't," Rumker said.  
  • In their research, Low and his colleagues have been trying to understand the relationship between language and mental health, looking into whether language changes in a systematic way given different mental health issues, like depression versus schizophrenia. Perhaps something in a person's language could signal symptoms. 
  • According to the National Institute of Mental Health, about 1 in 5 American adults lives with a mental illness. Meanwhile, research has shown that loneliness was on the rise well before the pandemic even started. Suicide rates increased by 35% between 1999 and 2018, according to the CDC. Meanwhile, not everyone who needs care gets it. A report on The State of Mental Health in America showed that there are 5.1 million adults with a mental illness who are also uninsured. 
  • "It's affecting all of us but certain people are probably more vulnerable," Daniel Low a graduate student in the Program in Speech and Hearing Bioscience and Technology at Harvard and MIT, as well as the lead author of the study, "we found that [it] is affecting certain groups more than others."
  • In a study, published in The Journal of Medical Internet Research this month, the group used machine learning to analyze the text from more than 800,000 Reddit posts coming from 15 subreddits devoted specifically to topics like health anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and depression, spanning from January to April. They also looked at 11 non-mental health subreddits like parenting and personal finance. 
  • Researchers from MIT and Harvard are using Reddit to look for ties between mental health and language, which could eventually improve care.
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  • In addition to misleading sponsors and advertisers, buying fake engagement violates Instagram's terms of service. In 2019, Facebook sued a company in New Zealand for fraud after it allegedly sold likes and followers.
  • Rotem and Locar called the operation sophisticated, even though the scammers committed a basic security blunder by not setting a password on their cloud database. Aside from that misstep, the criminals covered their tracks to avoid Instagram noticing the accounts were coordinated, and added new accounts as Instagram found and deactivated previous fake accounts. Facebook, which owns Instagram, has automated systems to detect fake accounts on Instagram, and can identify and deactivate them within hours.
  • Some influencers use click farms in an effort to boost their popularity on social media, which might help them win sponsorship deals or other promotional opportunities. It's unclear how widespread the practice is, but cybersecurity firm Cheq said last year that advertisers wasted an estimated $1.3 billion on ads and sponsored posts that were displayed to bots and fake accounts. The bogus engagement brings a level of fakery to the world of influencers that's worth remembering the next time you scroll through the enviable lives of social media personalities.
  • Instagram is a playground of deception. Filters, lighting and clever angles can make the humdrum look amazing.  On Wednesday, a pair of researchers said the deceit extended beyond artfully edited photos to inflated follower counts, which can make accounts appear to have more reach than they actually do. Behind the artificial numbers: a click farm operation that boosted performances by using tens of thousands of fake IG accounts. 
4 annotations
  • Delivering directional sound could have broad applications, such as at hospitals to deliver notifications in a specific ward without disturbing other patients or in airports providing sound to a section or a moving individual about the status of their flight.
  • The researchers found large and empty rooms work best for their technology, because understanding the direction of sound can be more difficult in smaller rooms due to reverberation. Using tracking hardware, a Kinect which they borrowed from video game console, they were able to cover a 4- by 4-meter space in the real world, which can be used to give the impression of covering even larger spaces in the VR simulation.
  • “Our system tracks the user through the camera and sends sound to the user,” said Rajguru. They delivered signals between 5 to 6 kilohertz and achieved a 20-centimeter accuracy delivering sound.
  • Chinmay Rajguru, from the University of Sussex, will discuss his research team’s work creating a sound projector that can deliver spatial sound at a distance by forming a beam of audible sound. The session, “A spatial sound delivery system for virtual and augmented reality,” will take place December 8 at 11:40 a.m. Eastern U.S. as part of the 179th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America, which will be held virtually Dec. 7-10.
  • Sound projectors provide an alternative to headphones for use in virtual reality and augmented reality simulations and for other contexts where it is helpful to direct sound to only those people who want it.
5 annotations
  • The most important lesson: When you find a good gadget repair shop, reward it with your loyalty
  • If any of the above intimidates you, there are plenty of professionals who can help.
  • Find a Fixer
  • That’s wise — a good case protects your phone from scratches and absorbs impact in the corners, edges and the back of your device.
  • Protect Your Gear
  • The more device storage you use up, the slower a gadget gets. So set a calendar reminder to do a data purge at least once a year.
  • Declutter Your Data
  • For computers, blow out the fans once a year.
  • For mobile devices, look inside the ports
  • Dirt and debris clogging up our equipment can contribute to overheating, which shortens the life of our electronics.
  • Do a Deep Clean
  • Windows users can download the app BatteryInfoView to measure battery health.
  • Mac users can click on the Apple icon, then About This Mac and then System Report. Then click on Power to see a reading on battery health.
  • Android devices have third-party apps like AccuBattery that can do a reading on your battery’s health.
  • Apple users with iPhones and iPads can open the Settings, then tap Battery and select Battery Health.
  • Because batteries can be charged only a finite number of times before they deteriorate, they will be one of the first things to go on mobile devices and laptops.
  • Check Your Battery
  • There are people out there willing to help. With retail stores for Apple and Microsoft shutting down in the pandemic and unable to service our gadgets, hiring a local fixer is now as good an idea as ever. It just takes some homework.
  • By elongating the life of our gadgets, we put more use into the energy, materials and human labor invested in creating the product.
  • Basic maintenance includes replacing batteries, cleaning out dust and purging unnecessary files that bog down our devices.
  • Many phone makers gave us incentives to buy new devices regularly, for example, while offering scarce education on steps to help our tech endure
  • How to Make Your Tech Last Longer
22 annotations
  • Its incarceration rate rose fivefold between 1970 and 2008. Relative to its population, it now locks up seven times as many people as France, 11 times as many as the Netherlands and 15 times as many as Japan
  • prosecutors to avoid seeking the maximum penalties for non-violent drug offenders. This reform caused a modest reduction in the number of federal prisoners
  • along with previous convictions for drug possession and livestock neglect, forced the judge to sentence her to ten years in prison.
  • The more people a country imprisons, the less dangerous each additional prisoner is likely to be. At some point, the costs of incarceration start to outweigh the benefits
  • Reserve prison for the worst offenders. Divert the less scary ones to drug treatment, community service and other penalties that do not mean severing ties with work, family and normality
  • Cognitive behavioural therapy—counselling prisoners on how to avoid the places, people and situations that prompt them to commit crimes—can reduce recidivism by 10-30%, and is especially useful in dealing with young offenders.
  • Each year she serves will cost taxpayers roughly $30,000—enough to pay the fees for three struggling students at the University of Iowa
  • Donald Trump’s attorney-general, Jeff Sessions, has just torn it up. This month he ordered prosecutors to aim for the harshest punishments the law allows,
  • Money spent on prisons cannot be spent on other things that might reduce crime more
  • because mass incarceration breaks up families and renders many ex-convicts unemployable, it has raised the American poverty rate by an estimated 20%
  • For a fraction of the cost of locking them up, they could be fitted with GPS-enabled ankle bracelets that monitor where they are and whether they are taking drugs.
  • . A study in Argentina finds that low-risk prisoners who are tagged instead of being incarcerated are less likely to reoffend
12 annotations
  • We have a long way to go, but we’re absolutely committed to achieving greater diversity at Facebook and across the industry,
  • “Social protests have forced the hands of companies, large and small, to take action. It is time.”
  • “We’ve agreed [inclusion] was a problem since at least 2013, but everyone was waiting for everyone else to do something,
  • “There is a sense of urgency; recent events accelerated our plans,” Judith Williams, SAP’s global head of people sustainability and chief diversity and inclusion officer, told MarketWatch. “We have to change the dynamic of our industry, and better reflect society.”
  • a pass on hiring black women and Latinas, as they did during the 2008 financial crisis,” said Bertina Ceccarelli, chief executive of nonprofit NPower, a leader in tech training programs. “But with the recent protests and acute visibility of systemic racism, this encourages companies to expand recruiting and training plans.”
  • “You have to start from Day One on diversity. Your company has to reflect the nation.”
  • is hopeful that social awareness and empathy with the black community enhances its ability to finally secure venture-capital funding, said Love, who is black.
  • Concrete goals and money to fund the efforts could make a difference, though
  • In a May Corporate Responsibility Report, the company released diversity goals of increasing the number of women in technical roles to 40% and doubling the number of women and underrepresented minorities in senior roles by 2030.
  • “Most companies just stay in the lane of what is legally required,” Barnard, who is white, told MarketWatch. “We can all do better.
  • Tech companies large and small offer targets for hiring black workers and devote large sums to the effort, but black tech workers say ‘We’ve heard it before
  • After years of talk, tech companies appear to be getting serious about diversity efforts
12 annotations
  • “We want Google to take real steps to help dismantle racism,” employees wrote. “We as a society have moved past the point where saying Black Lives Matter is enough, we need to show it in our thinking, in our words and in our actions that Black lives do matter to us.”
  • He also outlined how Google will give $12 million to racial justice organizations
  • Earlier this month, IBM said it would no longer sell its facial recognition technology, which has become a tool for policing and mass surveillance. Meanwhile, Microsoft recently said it won’t sell facial recognition technology to police without federal regulation and Amazon halted police use of its facial recognition tech for one year
  • Google is not the only tech company that has contracted with police departments and other law enforcement agencies. Salesforce, for example, has long held a contract with Customs and Border Protection, despite protest from employees and others.
  • “We have a long way to go to address the full legacy of racism but to begin with — we should not be in the business of profiting from racist policing. We should not be in the business of criminalizing Black existence while we chant that Black Lives Matter. We, the undersigned Googlers, call on you to stop making our technology available to police forces.” 
  • employees go on to say they want to be proud of the company they work for. They also want Google to speak to their values, the letter says
  • We’re committed to work that makes a meaningful difference to combat systemic racism, and our employees have made over 500 product suggestions in recent weeks, which we are reviewing,”
  • “Why help the institutions responsible for the knee on George Floyd’s neck to be more effective organizationally? Not only that, but the same Clarkstown police force being advertised by Google as a success story has been sued multiple times for illegal surveillance of Black Lives Matter organizers.
  • A growing group of more than 1,666 Google employees is demanding Google stop selling its technology to police departments, TechCrunch has learned.
  • Google employees demand company stop selling tech to police
10 annotations
  • Data security will reinforce its positions
  • we believe that cybersecurity will become more intelligence-driven in the upcoming year. Intelligence may become the only solution to the fast, automated attacks
  • The attributes like “connected”, “smart” or “intelligent” are now added to all technologies and solutions developed for various industries.
  • 2019 promises to become a year of AI technologies application in healthcare and medicine. People will face with a chance to get new opportunities, physical and mental capabilities they could not even dream of before. Humans will get a chance to modify, improve and continually upgrade their abilities and minds.
  • Autonomous things like drones, robots and autonomous vehicles are rapidly developed along with AI solutions.
  • For the 2018 year it was common to consider VR (virtual reality software) to be the most significant achievement of our generation. However, the situation has dramatically changed. VR proved to have a limited range of application among the companies and the customers.
  • The range of cloud solutions and delivery models is getting bigger and bigger.
  • Shortly these solutions will bring more flexibility and the abilities to react fast and even more efficiently to the rapidly changing market conditions. A new view on the cloud solutions adoption will be developed by the industries
  • Actually we are the witnesses of the immense evolution of AI-powered chatbot technology. Starting with simple routine tasks, chatbots are now actively turning into AI assistants. Customers got used to them very fasts and now cannot even imagine dealing with some issues without AI assistance.
  • Reinforcement learning (RL) in its turn is a form of neural network that usually learns from its environment with the help of observation, actions, and rewards. Reinforcement learning has not been widely applied in various industries due to the existence of some obstacles and complications
  • Also, biomedical electronics will take the stage. The digital technologies are to broaden the sphere of their competence in providing assistance doctors and mitigating the stressful situations.
11 annotations
 internet technology 5041
17 annotations
  • Top Apple Arcade gamesSneaky SasquatchHot LavaSkate CitySonic RacingPac-Man Party RoyaleSpongeBob: Patty PursuitOceanhorn 2Crossy Road CastleWhat the Golf?Lego Brawls
  • Top paid iPad gamesMinecraftMonopolyBloons TD 6Plague Inc.Geometry DashThe Game of LifeFive Nights at Freddy'sHuman: Fall FlatStardew ValleyTerraria
  • Top free iPad gamesAmong UsRobloxMagic Tiles 3: Piano GameInk Inc. - Tattoo DrawingCall of Duty: MobileSubway SurfersDancing Road: Color Ball Run!Tiles Hop - EDM RushMario Kart TourSave The Girl!
  • Top paid iPad appsProcreateGoodNotes 5NotabilityDuet DisplayTeach Your MonsterLumaFusionAffinity DesignerToca Hair Salon 3Toca Life: HospitalToca Kitchen 2
  • Top free iPad appsZoom Cloud MeetingsDisney PlusYouTubeNetflixGoogle ChromeTikTokAmazon Prime VideoGmailHuluGoogle Classroom
  • Top paid iPhone gamesMinecraftPlague Inc.Heads Up!MonopolyBloons TD6Geometry DashNBA 2K20Grand Theft Auto: San AndreasThe Game of LifeTrue Skate
  • Top free iPhone gamesAmong UsCall of Duty: MobileRobloxSubway SurfersInk Inc. - Tattoo DrawingMagic Tiles 3: Piano GameBrain Test: Tricky PuzzlesBrain OutCoin MasterCube Surfer!
  • Top paid iPhone appsTouchRetouchProcreate PocketDark Sky WeatherFacetuneHotSchedulesAutoSleep Track SleepThe Wonder WeeksSkyViewShadowrocketSky Guide
  • Top free iPhone appsZoom Cloud MeetingsTikTokDisney PlusYouTubeInstagramFacebookSnapchatMessengerGmailCash App
  • For grandparents and relatives who aren't able to visit the children in their lives in person, Caribu is an interactive video chat app that lets you read books, play games and color together virtually to stay connected. Pokemon Go reinvented its popular outdoor gameplay with more at-home experiences, including a virtual GO Fest in July where millions of participants walked an average of 15 km (more than nine miles) each over the course of a weekend. For students whose classrooms moved to their homes, the Explain Everything digital whiteboard app offered a cloud-based collaboration tool so groups of students could continue to work together remotely. The United Nations World Food Programme's ShareTheMeal app made it easy for people to donate to provide food assistance during emergencies worldwide, with more than 87 million meals shared to date. And the Shine app for daily self-care launched a new section dedicated to the intersectionality of mental health and Black lives. 
  • The best games of the year chosen by Apple editors -- Genshin Impact for iPhone, Legends of Runeterra for iPad, Disco Elysium for Mac, Dandara Trials of Fear for Apple TV and Sneaky Sasquatch for Apple Arcade -- also reflect themes of virtual connection, learning and exploring new worlds. 
  • Apple named Disney Plus the Apple TV app of the year, likely in part due to its catalog of family-friendly shows and movies, the addition of a GroupWatch feature, and, I have to imagine, giving us more Baby Yoda with season 2 of The Mandalorian. 
  • Zoom was named Apple's iPad app of the year, which comes as no surprise: The video chat platform grew from 10 million daily meeting participants in December to more than 300 million in April, and became one of the most popular ways to connect with friends, family and colleagues during the pandemic (check out our tips for using Zoom here). 
  • The iPhone app of the year, Wakeout!, gives you 30-second bursts of movement and exercise tailored to your home, office, car or local park.
  • "This year, more than ever before, some of our most creative and connected moments happened in apps," said Apple Fellow Phil Schiller. "Around the world, we saw remarkable efforts from so many developers, and these Best of 2020 winners are 15 outstanding examples of that innovation. From helping us stay fit and mindful, to keeping our children's education on track, to helping fight hunger, their impact was meaningful to so many of us."
  • This year's selections come with a theme: The apps and games that helped make life easier, healthier and more connected during a year unlike any other in recent history. 
  • The company has collected the apps and games for iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV and Apple Watch that made a difference this year.
17 annotations
  • Satellite timing is everywhere on Earth and in everything."I think most people don't realize how much they depend on GPS day in and day out," Space Force's Burt says. "It would be a bad day if we didn't have GPS."
  • The vulnerabilities of the satellite signals are something the GPS community has been thinking about for a long time, along with the need for some sort of backup -- the idea being to provide a ground-based service that might not be as good but that would suffice when somebody's jamming or spoofing or if the satellites aren't available. 
  • That's a line-of-sight issue, and it can often be resolved by moving, if you can, to a spot with a better view of the heavens. The US government says that GPS-enabled smartphones are typically accurate to within a 16-foot (5-meter) radius under the open sky. A Lockheed Martin engineer works on a GPS IIR-M satellite in 2005. According to GPS.gov, seven of this generation of satellites are still operational. Lockheed MartinThen there's interference -- other, stronger signals making too much radio "noise" nearby. "Because it's such a weak signal, it's very, very easy to block, to jam," Goward says. "Virtually any noise within that frequency is going to keep you from hearing the GPS signal."
  • Lockheed Martin has a contract to deliver a total of 10 GPS III satellites, at a reported average cost of $529 million apiece, but the company says the last two of them will come in at around $200 million each. When that's done, it'll move ahead with a batch called GPS III F, an additional 22 satellites to continue replacing older models, through the coming decade. "It takes a long time to replenish the GPS constellation," Burgett says. "It takes years."
  • In November 2018, the FCC authorized Galileo signals to be received in the US, which made it that much more likely you'll have multiple satellites in view -- in the double figures even, when technically you only need four to get a good, accurate location. The addition of the L1C signal with GPS III will likely make matters even better. "If you have more satellites," says Garmin's Burgett, "you can have more direct line-of-sight signals available to you and you can get a better fix."  
  • Here's what GPS III promises: The signals will be three times stronger, and they'll have eight times the anti-jamming capability. The satellites are projected to have a 15-year lifespan, double that of those from the early part of the previous generation, though the older ones have tended to stay in business longer than expected. A modular design means it's easier to make timely changes on the assembly line or to send software uploads to the satellites on orbit.
  • Space Force still has military users top of mind as it carries out its GPS mission. "For us, it's to deliver sustained, reliable GPS capabilities to America's warfighters," says Maj. Gen. DeAnna Burt, director of operations and communications at Space Force headquarters in Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado. Space Force also works closely with civilian and commercial partners to keep things running smoothly, she tells me. "We're always looking to improve not only our military capabilities but our civilian capabilities as well."
  • "Those GPS vehicles are only as accurate as the data we provide them," says 1st Lt. Andrew Johnson, a crew commander in the 2nd Space Operations Squadron, or 2 SOPS. "We get where the satellite thinks it is, we know where the satellite is, and we'll basically bake that into a nice little message, we'll send it up to the vehicle, and the vehicle goes, 'OK I'm actually here,' and that change in information finetunes the signal."
  • "[Location] is a byproduct of how the system works," says Scott Burgett, director of GNSS and software engineering at Garmin, which makes devices including fitness trackers and smartwatches. "All the satellites transmit signals, and they're synchronized pretty accurately, but in order to actually get your position information, you have to solve for time."
  • A GPS III satellite stands tall at Lockheed Martin's Littleton, Colorado, facility, in May 2018, a year and a half before its launch into orbit. The striped elements on top are antennas, which will be pointed earthward when the satellite is on orbit. Lockheed Martin"The GPS satellites are actually just highly precise atomic clocks, hooked to a radio transmitting a time signal," says Dana Goward, president of the Resilient Navigation and Timing Foundation, a Washington, DC-based nonprofit. On the ground, your GPS receiver -- which is what your mobile phone is, thanks to a GPS chip -- picks up the signals from four or more satellites. By measuring slight differences in the signals' time of arrival, all the way down to nanoseconds, it can calculate where you are and whether you're in motion.
  • There are 31 satellites in the GPS constellation, and 24 are considered the minimum for the core constellation to work as it's supposed to. Those two dozen are spread out in six orbital planes, so you should always be within view of at least four at any given moment. The remaining seven are essentially spares, to be rotated in as necessary. Though they're continuously beaming signals down to Earth that you'll pick up in your phone, fitness tracker or boating sat-nav device, they don't know where you are. They just broadcast, like a radio station in space.
  • GPS is the premier service among just a handful of global navigation satellite systems, or GNSS, which include the European Union's Galileo, Russia's Glonass and China's BeiDou. It's in the midst of a long-running modernization intended to deliver better signals to folks on the ground and to make the satellites more robust in space. That's good news not just for Uber drivers, pilots, bankers, geologists, farmers doing precision agriculture, and users of drones and self-driving cars but also for the sector that got the whole GPS ball rolling in the first place: the US military.
  • Gauging the overall value of GPS is nearly impossible," writes Greg Milner in Pinpoint, a 2016 book about how the space-based system came to be and the effect it's having on the world. "It has become difficult to untangle the worth of GPS from the worth of everything."
  • Robert Rodriguez/CNET"It's so much more than just driving directions," says Tonya Ladwig, acting vice president of space navigation systems at Lockheed Martin, which built that satellite.
  • The Global Positioning System has become vital to nearly all sectors of the country's critical infrastructure, with much of its work happening behind the scenes, and likely to a much greater extent than you realize. GPS tells us where we are and helps us get where we're going, but a core aspect of the technology is when -- the timing of, well, more or less a zillion things. It plays a critical role in financial transactions and stock trades, forecasting the weather, monitoring earthquakes and keeping the power grid humming.
  • Those signals will be coming from a GPS III satellite, the newest member of a constellation of satellites that have become a constant and intimate presence in our daily lives. With GPS III, we're getting not just new boxes in the sky, but a series of upgrades that'll help make the system better for all of us here on Earth. And we'll need it.
  • a SpaceX rocket roared into the heavens from Cape Canaveral, Florida, carrying a boxy, 5,000-pound, antenna-studded satellite toward its destination 12,500 miles away, up in what's known as medium Earth orbit. From that distant vantage point, it'll soon beam signals that will help you find your way to a friend's new house out in the suburbs or a vacation destination six hours down the coast.
17 annotations
  • As punishment, Youtube said it issued a strike against OAN. Under the platform's three-strikes policy, the account can't upload videos for at least a week after the violation. YouTube said it has also halted OAN's ability to earn revenue from videos, though the news outlet can reapply for the YouTube program that allows it to monetize content. OAN couldn't immediately be reached for comment.
  • YouTube has also drawn blowback from lawmakers for its handling of misinformation. In a letter sent to YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki late Monday, a group of Senate Democrats urged the company to take down false news related to the election and its outcome. The senators also expressed concern over the effect misinformation could have on two January runoff elections in Georgia, which will decide which party controls the Senate.
  • The suspension comes as YouTube has already been criticized for not doing enough to curb misinformation spread by OAN on the platform. In the days after the US presidential election earlier this month, OAN uploaded videos that falsely declared victory for Trump and baselessly accused Democrats of rigging the contest. YouTube demonetized the videos and labeled them with the warning, "Results may not be final." 
  • Since early in this pandemic, we've worked to prevent the spread of harmful misinformation associated with COVID-19 on YouTube," Ivy Choi, a YouTube spokeswoman, said in a statement. The company said it removed the offending video "after careful review." 
  • ouTube on Tuesday said it suspended One America News, a far-right news organization, for spreading misinformation related to COVID-19.The Google-owned platform said it took action against OAN, one of President Donald Trump's favorite outlets, after it posted a video that violated a policy against claiming there's a guaranteed cure for the novel coronavirus. 
5 annotations
  • That's probably the biggest letdown of the new Air -- it's new on the inside, not so much on the outside. Still just two ports. No edge-to-edge screen. No 5G. No touchscreen. Basically, all the things people prognosticate about in new-MacBook-Air prediction lists remain hypothetical. This is a transitional product. Once the new platform and software compatibility are well-established, design and feature changes may follow. 
  • Of the three new M1 Macs, the MacBook Air is the most different from its predecessor. That's because the system is finally truly fanless, replacing the cooling fans with an aluminum heat spreader inside, as well as taking advantage of the highly efficient M1 chip, which Apple says will produce less heat, do more work per watt and generally outperform even high-end Intel Macs. 
  • Testing several other MacOS-compatible games from my Steam and GOG.com libraries, I got two out of six to work, so at the moment, I'd consider this even less of a gaming-friendly machine than its predecessor, but hopefully that's an issue that can be patched or updated away soon. 
  • Assisting in this is the Rosetta 2 emulation technology, which automatically installs itself the first time you attempt to install a non-native app (as in, an app not optimized for the M1 platform). So far, it's let me install things like Adobe apps, including Photoshop and Premiere Pro, Steam for gaming and Google's Chrome web browser. 
  • The first is that much of what we do on our computers, again especially for the typical MacBook Air buyer, is done online, through cloud-based and browser-based tools. 
  • Going hands-on with the new M1-powered Apple MacBook Air feels very different from using any previous MacBook Air, even the early-2020 Intel version I tested alongside it. But that mostly comes from the new MacOS Big Sur experience, more than the hardware changes inside. Big Sur is a huge change for the Mac, with new visual flair, new controls and new ways of interfacing with your Mac.
6 annotations
  • The feature's debut Tuesday brought its share of complaints about the product, with some people saying the Fleets froze, lagged or made their Twitter crash. "We're aware of some issues people may be having and are working to fix them," a Twitter spokesperson said. Twitter didn't have numbers to share for the first day of Fleeting but suggested that it's watching the response closely. 
  • "Those new to Twitter found Fleets to be an easier way to share what's on their mind," the company said. "Because they disappear from view after a day, Fleets helped people feel more comfortable sharing personal and casual thoughts, opinions and feelings." And, apparently, sharing cat content. 
  • Aside from the jokes about the name (and very existence) of Fleets, Fleet-ing tweeting Tuesday also focused on trying to understand what the stories are, exactly, and when and how to use them.  
  • As my colleague Queenie Wong reports, Fleets represent Twitter's attempt to capitalize on the social media trend toward more ephemeral content that started after Snapchat introduced Stories, a format that's been copied by other sites including Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn
  • If you're Twitter and you roll out a new feature, you can expect tweets (upon tweets upon tweets) making fun of it. Twitter's Snark Brigade did not disappoint Tuesday, unleashing a steady stream of jokes and memes in reaction to Twitter's announcement of Fleets, a new format that lets users share text, photos and videos that vanish after 24 hours. 
5 annotations
  • try this experiment: Pull out a single spaghetti stick and hold it at both ends. Now bend it until it breaks. How many fragments did you make? If the answer is three or more, pull out another stick and try again. Can you break the noodle in two? If not, you’re in very good company
  • Feynman’s kitchen experiment remained unresolved until 2005
  • the forces at work when spaghetti — and any long, thin rod — is bent. They found that when a stick is bent evenly from both ends, it will break near the center, where it is most curved. This initial break triggers a “snap-back” effect and a bending wave, or vibration, that further fractures the stick. Their theory, which won the 2006 Ig Nobel Prize, seemed to solve Feynman’s puzzle
  • the forces at work when spaghetti — and any long, thin rod — is bent. They found that when a stick is bent evenly from both ends, it will break near the center, where it is most curved. This initial break triggers a “snap-back” effect and a bending wave, or vibration, that further fractures the stick. Their theory, which won the 2006 Ig Nobel Prize, seemed to solve Feynman’s puzzle. But a question remained: Could spaghetti ever be coerced to break in two?
  • according to a new MIT study, is yes — with a twist. In a paper published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers report that they have found a way to break spaghetti in two
  • The team found that if a stick is twisted past a certain critical degree, then slowly bent in half, it will, against all odds, break in two.
  • the results may have applications beyond culinary curiosities, such as enhancing the understanding of crack formation and how to control fractures in other rod-like materials such as multifiber structures, engineered nanotubes, or even microtubules in cells.
  • Heisser and Patil used the device to bend and twist hundreds of spaghetti sticks, and recorded the entire fragmentation process with a camera, at up to a million frames per second. In the end, they found that by first twisting the spaghetti at almost 360 degrees, then slowly bringing the two clamps together to bend it, the stick snapped exactly in two. The findings were consistent across two types of spaghetti: Barilla No. 5 and Barilla No. 7, which have slightly different diameters.
  • “Taken together, our experiments and theoretical results advance the general understanding of how twist affects fracture cascades,” Dunkel says.
  • e the forces at work when spaghetti — and any long, thin rod — is bent. They found that when a stick is bent evenly from both ends, it will break near the center, where it is most curved. This initial break triggers a “snap-back” effect and a bending wave, or vibration, that further fractures the stick. Their theory, which won the 2006 Ig Nobel Prize, seemed to solve Feynman’s puzzle. But a question remained: Could spaghetti ever be coerced to break in two?
10 annotations
  • Michael Fauscette, chief research officer at peer-to-peer business review platform G2 Crowd, said both sides of the political divide used news stories to target Facebook users in different parts of the country
  • Kosinski noted that many people don’t mind being targeted with more relevant information — but feel cheated when it’s done without their knowledge.
  • (A Facebook spokesman told MarketWatch at the time that the study was not used to target vulnerable teenagers with advertisements, regretted that this study was carried out and said the contents of this study should not have been shared with a company
  • What your Facebook ‘likes’ say about you
  • Cambridge University’s Psychometrics Centre, said these tools were created to “access a history of behavior that might be more accurate than a survey” — and that isn’t always a bad thing. They have potentially life-saving applications in public health
  • The company carried out research on the psychological states of teenagers and found “moments when young people need a confidence boos
  • during the 2016 election. Democratic voters who were shown content about candidate Hillary Clinton being ahead in the polls, for instance, may have become complacent and less likely to vote.
  • Last month, Congress repealed laws passed by the Federal Communications Commission on what data internet service providers could collect on users.
  • his 2012 analysis of 58,000 volunteers using Facebook predicted a user’s skin color with 95% accuracy.
9 annotations
  • ,
  • Starship’s delivery robots work this way: Customers use a smartphone mobile application to order their delivery. A text alerts customers — “You have a robot waiting for you outside” — when the robot is near their home or business. A person must be present to receive the delivery because only the customer has a unique code to unlock the robot’s box.
  • The Washington, D.C., Council opened the door to the machines by passing legislation last month that allows up to five different robot companies to operate
  • Ralston of Redwood City said test robots rolling around the city haven’t caused any issues so far. “People enjoy seeing the little robots. Or they completely ignore them
  • The presence of video cameras in the robots is a potential privacy issue
  • Autonomous devices use high-definition cameras that can take video of people and places from a sidewalk or from the air, as in the case of a drone. Scott questions: Who controls those images? How can they be used?
  • When the devices are being operated by humans, a lower resolution feed is used and the images are blurred. And the robots can’t identify the MAC numbers of nearby cellphones, he said.
  • if somebody bothers the robot the operator [watching from a headquarters far away] can actually shout, ‘Hey! What are you doing? … The police are coming in five minutes
  • the robotic delivery invasion already has arrived in the form of machines that look like beer coolers on wheels scooting along the sidewalks
  • developed by the science fiction-sounding company Starship Technologies, will be showing up any day in the nation’s capital and in Redwood City, California. They could soon be in up to 10 cities, ferrying groceries and other packages over what the company calls the “last mile,” from a neighborhood delivery “hub” to your front door, all for as little as $1 a trip.
10 annotations
  • LISTEN TO ARTICLE 5:23 SHARE THIS ARTICLE Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Email In this articleGOOGLALPHABET INC-A1,212.91USD-0.17-0.01%SPXS&P 5002,815.62USD+6.07+0.22%826938ZMOZILLA CORPPrivate CompanyUSDAAPLAPPLE INC190.40USD-1.05-0.55%AMZNAMAZON.COM INC1,842.92USD-1.01-0.05% Google received a record 4.3 billion-euro ($5 billion) antitrust fine from the European Union and was ordered to change the way it puts search and web-browser apps onto Android mobile devices
  • Google received a record 4.3 billion-euro ($5 billion) antitrust fin
  • Google has used Android as a vehicle to cement the dominance of its search engine," EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told reporters. “These practices have denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete on the merits."
  • Google received a record 4.3 billion-euro ($5 billion) antitrust fine from the European Union and was ordered to change the way it puts search and web-browser apps onto Android mobile devices.
  • Google has used Android as a vehicle to cement the dominance of its search engine," EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told reporters. “These practices have denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete on the merits
  • Google declined to say what changes it might make to comply with the EU order.
  • Last year, Google faced a then-record 2.4 billion-euro penalty following an investigation into shopping-search service.
  • The EU said Google ensures that Google Search and Chrome are pre-installed on "practically all Android devices" sold in Europe. Users who find these apps on their phones are likely to stick with them and "do not download competing apps in numbers that can offset the significant commercial advantage derived on pre-installation.”
  • Google’s actions reduce the incentives for manufacturers to install and for users to seek out competing apps, it said
  • Alphabet shares were unchanged at $1,212.98 while the S&P 500 Index was little changed at 11:56 a.m. in New York.
  • LISTEN TO ARTICLE 5:23 SHARE THIS ARTICLE Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Email In this articleGOOGLALPHABET INC-A1,212.91USD-0.17-0.01%SPXS&P 5002,815.62USD+6.07+0.22%826938ZMOZILLA CORPPrivate CompanyUSDAAPLAPPLE INC190.40USD-1.05-0.55%AMZNAMAZON.COM INC1,842.92USD-1.01-0.05% Google received a record 4.3 billion-euro ($5 billion) antitrust fine from the European Union and was ordered to change the way it puts search and web-browser apps onto Android mobile devices
  • Google Fined Record $5 Billion
12 annotations
 consumer electronics 7334
  • “We have a responsibility to be in the community. If we can’t be there physically, we can be there virtually,”
  • As a result, Excelin has been able to safely continue to provide needed care to patients by conducting virtual visits when in-person visits are restricted by the patient, the family caregiver or the nursing care facility.
  • “With [virtual care], we accomplish more with less,” Carter said. “We care for more diabetics in less hours with fewer nurses by using virtual visits and condition-specific messaging to engage these patients on a daily basis with education, self-management and motivation.”
  • The future will be using technology and having a nurse in the background/back office.
  • [Our platform] allows us to touch the patient more frequently.
  • “We needed a way to get the same (or better) outcome but reduce overall care cost. It’s a no-brainer that virtual care is the answer to PDGM. Clinicians need to manage patients by outcomes and actually perform overall case management while reducing overall costs and getting better outcomes. How else can you accomplish this without virtual care?”
  • virtual care reflects the agency’s mission, vision and values. The company—which Chief Operating Officer Linda Murphy says is an early adopter of technology that counts innovation as part of company culture—initially implemented a telehealth app in order to prepare for the Patient Driven Groupings Model (PDGM).
  • This use of technology reduces the burden on our nation’s hospitals while opening up available beds for the most critical patients.
  • , front-line caregivers have been able to help hospitals discharge COVID-19 patients earlier and reduce the risk of rehospitalization by leveraging telehealth.
  • using telehealth apps’ HIPAA-compliant video functionality to conduct virtual visits with COVID-19 patients who have been discharged from partner hospitals
  • As a result, agency leaders turned to telehealth in order to protect their staff and their patients while continuing to provide care in a  manner that limits exposure and the risk of infection and transmission.
  • Where Health Care & Technology Meet
12 annotations
  • But if you think about it, it is pretty similar to getting ready for any data technology. However ethics and a program to insure them is strangely missing from the available advice.
  • You have to understand the structure of your data and how the algorithms perform.
  • Points to consider in AI modeling
  • Companies can incorporate guidelines into their AI development and implementation processes to limit unintended consequences arising from AI implementation
  • Ethics in AI becomes an issue when the social context is involved.
  • Ethics evolve and can be addressed differently across jurisdictions.
  • It is not a simple issue as proper use of data is subject to current and historical ethical frameworks, regulators, cultural mores and professional organizations
  • AI ethics depend on social context
  • If your preparation for AI does not consider these risks, your program will have serious problem
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  • AI requires attention to numerous social contexts, including:
  • To the extent that AI risks involve people — the social context — we can say that they are ethical risks.
  • "The invention of the ship was also the invention of the shipwreck." Ethics, or trustworthy AI, if you like, require more than a position paper.
  • Data democratization policies that specify access rights, ‘right to see' authorizations, ethical principles, and acceptable applications for data usage across the organization;
  • Data governance that spans compliance, risk, and regulation related to data (including privacy, security, and access controls
  • Hopefully, I have demonstrated that data readiness is less about the data and more about readiness
  • In an extensive benchmark study by Capgemini Consulting, AI Readiness Benchmark POV (PDF), the term "ethics" appears only once in 30+ pages
  • but rarely is there any mention of training people in the ethical implications and setting up the mechanism for compliance.
  • With the possibility of serious negative consequences springing directly from AI projects, there needs to be more focus and discussion around ensuring ethical standards are upheld.
  • AI readiness isn’t just a technology issue – ethics matter too
20 annotations
  • The point of all this isn't to say that hard-dollar ROI is necessarily better than soft-dollar ROI — it may not be. Hard-dollar ROI is always lower risk, though, because it's bankable in the near term, whereas many things may have to go right to capture soft-dollar ROI, provided the opportunity to do so exists in the first place. 
  • Not only is data relevant for creating a reasonable estimate of a future soft-dollar ROI, but establishing proof points enables you to recognize the milestones as they are achieved
  • 3. What data or proof points do you have that I will achieve the ROI?
  • Having a timeline also serves as a reality check for the technology partner by effectively saying, "I hear you selling me the dream; when will I know the dream has come true?"
  • A positive ROI that takes decades to achieve is likely not a great investment relative to other places you might invest your capital.
  • 2. How quickly can I expect to see that ROI?
  • Soft-dollar ROI, on the other hand, is more complex and speculative. It takes time to realize or may not be realized at all
  • Hard-dollar ROI can be clearly defined and quantified.
  • Any solution that doesn't deliver a positive ROI won't meet your needs — and most likely won't be around very long.
  • The answer should be an unequivocal yes
  • Will your technology provide a positive return on investment (ROI)?
  • What data or proof points do you have that I will achieve the ROI?
  • How quickly can I expect to see that ROI?
  • Will your technology generate a positive return on investment (ROI)
  • they often focus on conducting lengthy request-for-proposal (RFP) or other processes that don't cover what I consider to be three of the most consequential questions:
  • The ultimate purpose of any financial investment, however, is to make money.
  • many of the things that lead to greater profitability, such as energy efficiency or automation, have positive external effects as well (e.g., a cleaner environment or less waste)
  • While it's often the case that technology has numerous perks, when it comes to investing in technology for your property, those benefits are usually measured one way: impact to profitability
  • Three Questions To Ask Before Investing In Property Technology
19 annotations
  • only one 30-minute class to start off the morning, then extending to 45 minutes when they’ve had some practice. Afternoon “choice time” with enrichment classes is also optional.
  • “They’re kids, they can’t be on the computer all day, it gets tiring,” she said, offering as an example a “50/50 solution”
  • In an effort to improve these barriers, some teachers are introducing “breakout rooms” in virtual classrooms where students get some time to chat one-on-one with their classmates
  • Martha Martin, Tom’s older sister who’s in ninth grade, said doing distance learning since spring has made her better at using technology
  • and noted that his family is privileged to have an expensive tablet for his child’s use
  • These programs have made teaching more approachable for Carrie Johnston, a
  • Another 150 hotspots will be available for families if the poor air quality from nearby wildfires improves and the EdHub is able to reopen on Wednesday, according to district spokeswoman Trish McDermott.
  • as well as access to school supplies and books,
  • said internet connectivity is an issue for many families,
  • ferent devices, including two Chromebooks from the district and Rattan’s personal computer, but the day ended with her son being marked absent despite repeated attempts to access his class
  • who is in special education, wasn’t able to access his class through the provided Zoom link
  • a jumble of internet learning technology, trouble-shooting virtual classrooms and Wi-Fi connections, and settling in to their first-ever fall — and foreseeable future — with distance learning
  • Berkeley schools are relying on technology to kick off distance learning this fall, with mixed results
13 annotations
  • Rolling blackouts are not an acceptable or inevitable result of heatwaves. The recent blackouts were caused by a lack of planning and procurement for sufficient capacity to cope with increasingly extreme heat waves caused by climate disruption, as well as other factors.
  • Power Outages Are Not Acceptable—or Inevitable
  • Heat pump water heaters (HPWHs) can also double as clean-energy batteries by storing water heated by emissions-free solar energy to use during times when the sun isn’t shining, reducing strain on the grid at key times to avoid outages.
  • Flexible Loads to Help Avoid Grid Outages
  • . A recent study from UCLA’s Fielding School of Public Health finds that replacing gas with efficient electric appliances in California homes would prevent about 350 premature deaths each year and produce $3.5 billion in annual health benefits from cleaner air.
  • Heat pump appliances can also improve both indoor and outdoor air quality. They have filters that clean the air of particulate matter from fires, mold, and allergens while providing cooling or heating.
  • Cleaner Air Inside Your Home
  • In addition, with a heat pump, families that mostly need heating during the winter can also occasionally benefit from in-home cooling to protect against sudden and life-threatening spikes in temperature like we’ve seen this week in California. <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="https://assets.nrdc.org/sites/default/files/styles/full_content/public/media-uploads/home_with_heat_pumps_-_2.26.20.jpg?itok=CytBoXfI" width="634" height="476" alt="Homes with heat pumps" />
  • But heat pumps also offer cooling using the same equipment—just press a button and you get a nice cool breeze while a heatwave rages outside
  • Moving to super-high efficiency heat pump technology for water heating and space heating reduces climate pollution by avoiding the use of fossil gas (aka “natural” gas) or propane.
  • Affordable Air Conditioning
  • They are a core technology for reducing the climate pollution coming from our homes and buildings.
  • Heat pumps are a super-efficient electric technology for heating (and cooling) homes and heating water.
  • modern electric heat pumps are a climate-proof technology that can help Californians survive and thrive during these difficult times.
  • Let’s Ride These Heatwaves with Heat Pump Technology
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  • I'm here so that people can place their trust in a well-earned trustworthiness institution. That is to say, people come up with social innovations, regardless of whether it's, for example, using a traditional rice cooker to disinfect a mask, or that they think that the CDC medical officer should wear a pink medical mask to support boys who don't want to go to school because all they have is pink medical masks — and the officer actually did wear a pink mask — and all this, I think, is just those great ideas. I'm merely someone who maintains the operating system so that this institution can respond in a more agile fashion.
  • So, one of the most popular maps that shows the mask availability has been modified from the AirBox map. The AirBox is an inexpensive [less than $100 USD] measuring device to measure the air quality.
  • There was a person named Howard Wu in Tainan city who developed a map so that people could see the nearby places and exactly how many masks there are in stock.
  • And the counter-pandemic effort is mostly about getting people to understand the science and the epidemiology so that people can innovate and wash their hands more vigorously, wear a mask to remind oneself to keep their unwashed hands away from their faces, and making sure that each pharmacy has sufficient supply.
  • It has seen fewer than 500 cases and seven deaths. Much of that success has been attributed to Taiwan's approach to technology.
  • ang helps develop digital tools that connect citizens with government officials and vice versa.
  • Taiwan is battling coronavirus with technology and trus
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  • Ultimately, every new technology a local government implements should always either improve citizens’ lives, save them money or both.
  • Always consider what and how things should be communicated to citizens when implementing new technology.
  • 7. Will citizens be affected by this change? How will information be communicated to them?
  • Failure is part of innovation. To prepare for this, agencies should always have a Plan B in case the new product doesn’t work out as expected.
  • 6. What’s the exit strategy if this solution doesn’t work?
  • Things ALWAYS take longer than expected.
  • 5. What is the realistic timeline to launch, including staff training?
  • IT managers have mixed feelings on this. For some, it’s a good opportunity to quickly onboard a new tool -- especially if the local government has an existing relationship with the vendor. Others avoid these deals.
  • Many vendors are offering their services for free for a limited time,
  • 4. If a product or service is being offered for free right now, what will it cost when it’s time to renew, and will our budget accommodate it?
  • Be sure to understand what training and ongoing support the vendor will provide, what costs (if any) are associated with that and what additional resources
  • It doesn’t matter how groundbreaking a piece of technology is -- if people can’t or won’t use it, then it’s not a good solution
  • 3. Will people use it?
  • Besides confirming that their own systems have layers of security, agencies should do a deep dive with vendors on those firms' security protocols -- and if they don’t have any or can’t describe them, that’s a red flag.
  • As IT managers well know, cybersecurity is a top priority when assessing new technology. It’s important they dig into how the vendor stores data and who actually owns it.
  • 2. What security measures are needed to protect agency networks, and who owns the data?
  • Working with applications that are already available can bypass the purchasing and onboarding processes, saving valuable tim
  • Messaging tools like Microsoft Teams were used for file sharing and email reduction, and PayPal accounts were considered as a way to pay taxes.
  • Sometimes the answer is already in at hand. Before implementing something new, look at the existing stack to see what could be applied more broadly.
  • 1. Are there any installed tools that could solve for some/all of the problem at hand?
  • Each IT department faces a slightly different equation, based on current technology, processes and resources.
  • 7 questions to ask before implementing new technology
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  • . Can we now solve these problems with new tech capabilities?
  • With new tech, we can revisit every problem already solved in the world, and check if we can provide a better answer
  • But Why Should I Care?
  • . Considering the last decade of innovation: when we said "digital," we essentially meant "web and mobile." Today digital means IoT, AI, Decentralization, AR/VR/MR, and a host of other technologies
  • To make the four mentioned questions clearer, let's take a more recent example: the age of mobile and web connectivity. Imagine that you are an entrepreneur somewhere around 2009:
  • 1. What technologies are available?
  • what these technologies can do
  • 3. Which business problems am I facing?
  • 4. Can these capabilities solve my business problems?
  • But there is an additional layer here - the dialogue between tech and business. When tech revolves around mechanical development (engines, machines, etc.), business problems tend to revolve or define themselves around similar capabilities. A combustion engine could not solve math problems, but it could power things. Business questions started spinning around pow
  • How can technology help me solve my business problems? How can it make my business better?
  • What is changing is how we resolve these challenges, and here tech plays a major role
  • Tech can also be a revenue generator in its own right: for example, AWS is a major revenue generator for Amazon.
  • Technology, we quickly learned, is a business differentiator. Fast forward to today, technology is the enabler of businesses, and in many cases, tech is the business itself.
  • The “Tech And Business” Ongoing Dialogue
  • as businesses become more complex to run, better tools are needed to meet these challenges, and this is where technology comes in.  
  • Differentiation of offerings, personalization of experiences, utilization of resources, optimization of processes.., these have been, are, and will be the challenges of businesses over time and geography.
  • How Technology Can Help Solve (My) Business Problems
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  • These restaurants do not have a public persona to live up to, so they can serve as the fulfillment centers for several different restaurant brands. A “virtual” hamburger joint, for example, might use a robot to flip burgers, reducing the chance of contaminating food while increasing the speed of food production and reducing staffing costs.
  • Food preparation
  • Many diners would have complained about this level of automation pre-COVID-19, but people are eager to return to some level of normalcy and surveys consistently demonstrate that concern about the virus remains high.
  • Reducing the number of human interactions automatically mitigates the potential spread of COVID-19 and all viral infections. Ordering from a “kiosk” located at each table is a tried-and-true method of taking food orders.
  • Server interactions.
  • Infrared-enabled wall mirrors are one potential technology that companies like Deluxe are evaluating closely.
  • Next to strict adherence to social distancing measures and the use of PPE, identifying potential sources of exposure is one of the most effective tools in the fight against spreading viral illnesses.
  • Super spreaders
  • There are emerging technologies that utilize sensors and 3D perception software to provide this service, sending real-time updates on overcrowding so businesses can make faster, better-informed decisions
  • Density
  • their dollars will gravitate toward establishments that invest in technology that offers peace of mind. Some of these advancements are truly cutting edge, but others have been around for a while and are finding support in an industry suddenly forced to focused on public health. Below are five risk areas and the mitigation technologies that can help to solve them. 
  • How Technology Can Augment COVID-19 Safety Procedures
  • A more likely scenario is that a vaccine will enable governments to manage the virus more effectively, reducing—but not eliminating—infections.
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  • As the standards for verifying this kind of evidence continues to improve and gains wider use, legal acceptance of it should grow
  • . And with more institutional backing from major donors and international organizations, efforts to monitor and document abuses from the ground up are increasing the odds of success for human rights advocac
  • Still, overall, it seems increasingly likely that technology has a bright future for ensuring human rights accountability.
  • . In many cases, human rights activists who want to use social media to crowdsource accounts of abuses must rely on private technology companies whose goals may not be aligned with theirs
  • Another NGO, eyeWitness to Atrocities, has created a mobile camera app that embeds images and footage with metadata from the moment they were created, helping to ensure the accuracy needed to enable their use in legal proceedings.
  • Witness, a Brooklyn-based NGO that works to share knowledge on the use of technology for human rights accountability, has also developed a comprehensive guide on the use of video as evidence
  • n 2016, Amnesty International launched the Digital Verification Corps in collaboration with six universities around the world, to pioneer new approaches to the accurate use of new and emerging technologies to monitor human rights abuses.
  • n. The proliferation of “deep fake” images, which are manipulated using artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies, is also a growing concern
  • Given the novelty of these technologies and how rapidly they have been deployed, standards and practices for their use have lagged behind, which could potentially limit their effectivenes
  • Unmanned aerial vehicles have been used for similar purposes, and the information gathered re
  • satellite images played an important role in uncovering the systematic nature of attacks on civilian populations by the notorious Janjaweed militias.
  • They use smart phones and video recorders, among other tools, to document an array of human rights abuses, from massacres of civilians to forced migration to the destruction of housing.
  • With the introduction of smart phones in the intervening years, the value of crowdsourced tools like Ushahidi for human rights work has increased massively
  • A group of lawyers, activists and coders built Ushahidi, Swahili for “witness,” an application that allowed Kenyans to document and report the details of riots, attacks by police and soldiers, and other violent incidents they witnessed through text or email.
  • The proliferation of internet-connected mobile devices allows anyone to document abuses in real time, including Darnella Frazier, the teenager who filmed the killing of George Floyd by a white police officer in Minneapolis
  • The aim was to create a database of news articles and other reports of atrocities, which were obtained mostly through written sources like news articles, NGO reports, and correspondence with victims and witnesses, which were manually entered into the database
  • They might never have been exposed without new technologies like smart phones and social media, whose use for accountability is transforming human rights.
  • How New Technologies Are Holding Human Rights Abusers Accountable
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  • Finally, it is worth keeping in mind that the vendors of smaller third-party products are often small organizations
  • Integrating each tool with the other can be complex and difficult which means the enterprise IT team will need to be excellent at integrating third-party products together
  • Integrating Tools
  • end-users are losing 29 minutes per week due to poor sound quality on voice calls
  • , over 75% of whom work within organizations of over 200 people, the most popular of these platforms for are: Skype for Business (used by 38% of end users)Microsoft Teams (27%) Webex (16%
  • employees would benefit from higher quality audio solutions
  • One of the other areas of technology that has been creating problems for remote workers is audio for video or sound-conferencing,
  • The Problem With Sound
  • Experience needs to be managed to create the best environment for employees to be able to interact and collaborate with each other seamlessly
  • Collaboration tools can be a great way to ensure all employees have direct communication with each other at a pace that is conducive to spawn creativity and innovation
  • 38% had issues with VPN access to critical software 37% had problems with Wi-Fi connectivity and reliability, and 35% had challenges using video conferencing apps
  • in-office employees were losing 28 minutes of work for every IT issue, a pretty dismal state of affairs for both employee engagement and business continuity
  • Wasting Time With Technology
  • Building technology capability which enables flexibility in the workforce has now become a must-do for all organizations.
  • out that although the idea of flexible working has been around now for many years, the use of technology to enable working from anywhere at any-time has plateaued in recent years
  • However, not all technology is helping workers in this respect.
  • Gartner estimates that 88% of organizations have encouraged or mandated employees to work from home due to COVID-19.
  • Why Technology Can Still Create Obstacles to Remote Working
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  • Just keep in mind that smart home products can create more problems than they solve
  • Does it solve a problem?
  • Is the software easy to update?
  • Let’s use an iPad as an example. If you wanted an iPad, you could pay $329 for the base model with 32 gigabytes of storage. But it’s probably a better idea to spend $429 on the model with 128 gigabytes of storage — that’s quadruple the capacity, which you can use to hold apps, games, photos and videos for years to come.
  • But it does mean investing in configurations that will make you happier in the long run, said Nick Guy, a senior staff writer for Wirecutter, a New York Times publication that tests products.
  • Another rule of thumb to consider is investing more in a product to make it last.
  • Should I spend more?
  • People tend to have more problems with products that have moving parts, like printers with ink cartridges, than with electronics like TVs or tablets, said Jerry Beilinson, a technology editor at Consumer Reports.
  • Like household appliances, tech products have failure rates — the ratio of working to defective units
  • Is the product reliable?
  • Wireless earphones like Apple’s AirPods and Bose’s QuietComfort 35 are examples of popular products with irreplaceable batteries. Once the batteries die, you have to buy a brand-new pair
  • Fortunately, most phones and laptops have batteries that can be replaced by professionals
  • One of the clearest indicators of a product’s durability is whether the batteries are replaceable. Gadgets that work without wires are powered by a lithium-ion battery, which can be charged only a finite number of times before it deteriorates.
  • Is the battery replaceable?
  • Find out whether there’s a community of enthusiasts. Sometimes there are no local fixers who can help with a product, but there may be enthusiasts who write their own guides that you can follow
  • Check if local technicians can service the device.
  • Consult iFixit, a website that offers instructions on gadget repairs. For some products, the site tears apart gadgets and does an analysis on its ease of repair.
  • Before you buy it, find out whether you or a professional can easily fix it.
  • Is the tech easy to repair?
  • Here’s the thing: This is all the doing of marketing professionals, seared into our subconscious. The reality is that consumer electronics, such as your phone, computer or tablet, can last for many years. It just takes some research to obtain tech that will endure.
  • How to Buy Tech That Lasts and Lasts
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  • When developing a tech product, rely on your passion and drive to help your audience by making their lives easier, safer, balanced and healthy.
  • Seeking to help
  • 4. Look for other demographic connections and opportunities
  • For me, having the "coolest tech" was a big factor in developing my phone. Kids don't want clunky, old-looking technology
  • Considerations might include peers and influencers, trends, risks and threats, and legislative or social changes in society
  • It's important to know how this impacts the type of tech product they might need or want. 
  • 3. Understand the impact of their external environment 
  • It can be challenging in some respects, especially if you're further removed from your demographic. In addressing my dual segment of kids and parents, I was fortunate to have my own children for their perspectives and my parental experience to use as a basis
  • Part of that research for developing a tech product for a specific demographic goes beyond collecting data. It means looking at life the way through the same lens that your audience segment would to better understand why they hav
  • 2. See life through their eyes
  • When it came to my smartphone for kids, I had to do that deep dive into research with both kids and parents to understand all of the aforementioned areas.
  • Use your idea of what you think they need and build on that by doing extensive market research.
  • 1. Differentiate your specific demographic from the rest 
  • The point again is that age isn't always a black-and-white demographic to use for tech product development
  • oduct is at the other end of the age spectrum, as it is made specifically for kids
  • My product is at the other end of the age spectrum, as it is made specifically for kids
  • Tech developers take into consideration their target demographic's wants and needs to develop tech that will solve their problems and be the most useful for them.
  • Good tech is designed with a specific user in mind
  • Four Strategies For Developing Tech Products For Specific Demographics
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  • Over time, Google and Apple will likely face growing pressure to surveil COVID‑19 patients just as closely as they follow those who use their maps.
  • They have designed their COVID‑19 alert system to prevent the centralized collection of data and promised that the system will disappear with the disease
  • Now, according to the nonprofit Privacy International, at least 27 countries have begun using cellphone data to track the spread of the coronavirus
  • More than anything, it needs an aura of competence to cover for its flailing efforts. As the nation awaits a vaccine, the government may have no choice but to rely on Big Tech to compensate for its gaps in ability and expertise
  • As the pandemic accelerates Big Tech’s insinuation into government affairs, the industry’s most powerful companies will almost certainly exploit their relationships with agencies to damage less powerful rivals and extract lucrative contracts
  • This same basic logic led Amazon to plant its second headquarters on the Potomac River, and it’s led companies like Google and Microsoft to build relationships with the intelligence community
  • When Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg appeared before the Senate in 2018, he preemptively conceded, “I think the real question as the internet becomes more important in people’s lives is what is the right regulation, not whether there should be [regulation] or not
  • Like John Galt, the protagonist of Atlas Shrugged, they muttered about the evils of government and how it kept down great innovator
  • Tech executives didn’t always yearn to work in league with government.
  • The blessings bestowed by the online economy in this strange time are indisputable, and we should be grateful for them.
  • Public health and education may be traditional functions of government, but Nadella suggested that his industry should share the burden: “We at Microsoft view ourselves as digital first responders
  • Also in April, Google and Apple announced that they would suspend their rivalry to work with nations of the world to create a new alert system
  • The challenges we face demand an unprecedented alliance between business and government.”
  • The government has flailed in its response to the pandemic, and Big Tech has presented itself as a beneficent friend, willing to lend a competent hand
  • In the midst of the pandemic, Google Meet has become a delivery mechanism for school. AmazonFresh has made it possible to shop for groceries without braving the supermarket.
  • Many Americans have come to view them as wellsprings of disinformation, outrage, and manipulation—and have noticed that the most profitable companies in human history haven’t always lived by the idealism of their slogans
  • The founding fathers of Big Tech really did view their creations as essential, and essentially good.
  • What Big Tech Wants Out of the Pandemic
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  • These neural representations of task rules are maintained in the prefrontal cortex
  • In the new study, Halassa wanted to further investigate the relationship between the mediodorsal thalamus and the prefrontal cortex.
  • a professor of psychology at the Princeton Neuroscience Institute, described the study as a major leap forward in the field of cognitive neuroscience.
  • When we move between different contexts like this, our brain holds multiple sets of rules in mind so that it can switch to the appropriate one when necessary.
  • This region, called the mediodorsal thalamus, suppresses representations that are not currently needed.
  • In a 2017 study published in Nature, Halassa and his colleagues showed that the mediodorsal thalamus helps the prefrontal cortex to keep a thought in mind by temporarily strengthening the neuronal connections in the prefrontal cortex that encode that particular thought.
  • The findings could help guide the development of better artificial intelligence algorithms,
  • The findings could help guide the development of better artificial intelligence algorithms,
  • The findings could help guide the development of better artificial intelligence algorithms, Halassa says. The human brain is very good at learning many different kinds of tasks — singing, walking, talking, etc. However, neural networks (a type of artificial intelligence based on interconnected nodes similar to neurons) usually are good at learning only one thing. These networks are subject to a phenomenon called “catastrophic forgetting” — when they try to learn a new task, previous tasks become overwritten. Halassa and his colleagues now hope to apply their findings to improve neural networks’ ability to store previously learned tasks while learning to perform new ones. The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Brain and Behavior Foundation, the Klingenstein Foundation, the Pew Foundation, the Simons Foundation, the Human Frontiers Science Program, and the German Ministry of Education. Topics: Research, Memory, Brain and cognitive sciences, Artificial intelligence, Neuroscience, McGovern Institute, School of Science, National Institutes of Health (NIH) Related Halassa LabMcGovern InstituteDepartment of Brain and Cognitive SciencesSchool of Science Archives Study reveals a basis for attention deficits How the brain controls sleep New study reveals how brain waves control working
  • he findings could help guide the development of better artificial intelligence algorithms, Halassa says. The human brain is very good at learning many different kinds of tasks — singing, walking, talking, etc. However, neural networks (a type of artificial intelligence based on interconnected nodes similar to neurons) usually are good at learning only one thing. These networks are subject to a phenomenon called “catastrophic forgetting” — when they try to learn a new task, previous tasks become overwritten. Halassa and his colleagues now hope to apply their findings to improve neural networks’ ability to store previously learned tasks while learning to perform new ones. The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Brain and Behavior Foundation, the Klingenstein Foundation, the Pew Foundation, the Simons Foundation, the Human Frontiers Science Program, and the German Ministry of Education. Topics: Research, Memory, Brain and cognitive sciences, Artificial intelligence, Neuroscience, McGovern Institute, School of Science, National Institutes of Health (NIH) Related Halassa LabMcGovern InstituteDepartment of Brain and Cognitive SciencesSchool of Science Archives Study reveals a basis for attention deficits How the brain controls sleep
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 homework and study tips 7695
  • hen there’s Hitachi’s automated hand-washing monitoring device, which detects whether workers wash their hands sufficiently — for at least 20 seconds —
  • Hitachi created a device that detects elevated body temperature from up to 10 feet away
  • The robot, which has sensors and a 360-degree camera, is steered around the park remotely and uses its built-in speaker to play a recorded message when it comes across people defying social-distancing rules
  • “All it does is damage the DNA or RNA in that bacteria and kill it,”
  • “One of the useful properties of UV light in general is that it doesn’t distinguish between drug-resistant bacteria and drug-sensitive bacteria,”
  • But it can still zap microbes, bacteria and viruses on surfaces and in the air.
  • The technology uses a shorter band of wavelength that can’t penetrate the skin, and therefore won’t damage the cells and tissue under it, said David Brenner, director of the Center for Radiological Research at Columbia University.
  • But UVC light can’t be blasted into rooms where people are. Prolonged exposure to it can cause skin cancer, cornea damage and other problems
  • Other companies making UV robots include Xenex, Tru-D, Puro Lighting and Surfacide. Many of these are stationary — rather than mobile — robots.
  • Mr. Risager said scientists had long lauded UVC light as a weapon against SARS, MERS and other viruses
  • The CARES Act, which offers funding for tech upgrades in the United States, is also spurring companies to embrace shiny new technology faster — and more willingly — than in the past.
  • “This robot kills 99.99 percent of viruses, bacteria and fungal spores,”
  • The robot moves autonomously through a room, using ultraviolet-C light to destroy the RNA in a virus and DNA in bacteri
  • So when six doctors contracted Covid-19 at his hospital in Sardinia two months ago, he once again turned to technology — in this case, UVD Robots — to disinfect the rooms.
  • Fighting the Coronavirus With Innovative Tech
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  • Over the past three months, I interviewed a dozen current and former employees of Cognizant in Phoenix. All had signed non-disclosure agreements with Cognizant in which they pledged not to discuss their work for Facebook — or even acknowledge that Facebook is Cognizant’s client.
  • Collectively, the employees described a workplace that is perpetually teetering on the brink of chaos. It is an environment where workers cope by telling dark jokes about committing suicide,
  • The moderators told me it’s a place where the conspiracy videos and memes that they see each day gradually lead them to embrace fringe views
  • Chloe’s job is to tell the room whether this post should be removed. S
  • The use of contract labor also has a practical benefit for Facebook: it is radically cheaper. The median Facebook employee earns $240,000 annually in salary, bonuses, and stock options. A content moderator working for Cognizant in Arizona, on the other hand, will earn just $28,800 per year.
  • nOn May 3, 2017, Mark Zuckerberg announced the expansion of Facebook’s “community operations” team. The new employees, who would be added to 4,500 existing moderators, would be responsible for reviewing every piece of content reported for violating the company’s community standards.
  • Another former employee, who told me he has mapped every escape route out of his house and sleeps with a gun at his side, said: “I no longer believe 9/11 was a terrorist attack
  • Miguel is also allotted nine minutes per day of “wellness time,” which he is supposed to use if he feels traumatized and needs to step away from his desk. Several moderators told me that they routinely used their wellness time to go to the restroom when lines were shorter. But management eventually realized what they were doing, and ordered employees not to use wellness time to relieve themselves.
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 law, govt and politics 4940