Tag Archives: technology

Automaker Unveils Driverless Electric Group Taxi

TechCrunch reports: Cruise unveiled Tuesday evening a “production ready” driverless vehicle called Origin, the product of a multi-year collaboration with parent company GM and investor Honda that is designed for a ride-sharing service. The shuttle-like vehicle — branded with Cruise’s trademark orange and black colors — has no steering wheel or pedals and is designed to travel at highway speeds. …

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Amazon Tests Hand-Scan Retail Payment System

CNBC reports: Technology giant Amazon is working to allow customers to connect their credit card information to their hands, so that they can scan for purchases with their palms at checkout areas in physical stores. While Amazon’s plan is in the early stages, the company has reportedly begun working with Visa on testing out the terminals, and has discussed the …

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MS Offers Free Security Patch After Feds Give Alert

The Associated Press reports: The National Security Agency has discovered a major security flaw in Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system that could allow hackers to intercept seemingly secure communications. But rather than exploit the flaw for its own intelligence needs, the NSA tipped off Microsoft so that it can fix the system for everyone. Microsoft released a free software patch …

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Barr Demands Apple Unlock Phones Used By Terrorist

The New York Times reports: Attorney General William P. Barr declared on Monday that a deadly shooting last month at a naval air station in Pensacola, Fla., was an act of terrorism, and he asked Apple in an unusually high-profile request to provide access to two phones used by the gunman. Mr. Barr’s appeal was an escalation of an ongoing …

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TikTok Overhauls Content Rules After Growing Criticism

Wired Magazine reports: Whereas Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube have developed lengthy policies covering hundreds of circumstances, TikTok provided a short list of bullet points addressing only the most extreme content. Amid growing scrutiny over censorship and its Chinese ownership from regulators, the company has pledged that more transparency would be forthcoming. Now, it’s here. On Wednesday, TikTok released a comprehensive …

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Facebook Bans “Deepfake” Videos Ahead Of Election

The Associated Press reports: Facebook says it is banning “deepfake” videos, the false but realistic clips created with artificial intelligence and sophisticated tools, as it steps up efforts to fight online manipulation. The social network said late Monday that it’s beefing up its policies to remove videos edited or synthesized in ways that aren’t apparent to the average person, and …

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Major Retailers Rush To Comply With CA Privacy Law

The Associated Press reports: U.S. retailers including Walmart Inc will add “Do Not Sell My Info” links to their websites and signage in stores starting Jan. 1, allowing California shoppers to understand for the first time what personal and other data the retailers collect, sources said. Large U.S retailers are rushing to comply with a new law, the California Consumer …

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New Year To Bring New State Taxes On Electric Cars

The Associated Press reports: The new year will bring new charges for some owners of electric vehicles, as an increasing number of states seek to plug in to fresh revenue sources to offset forgone gas taxes. In Hawaii, the charge will be $50. In Kansas, $100. In Alabama and Ohio, $200. For the first time, a majority of U.S. states …

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Russian Robots To Track Asteroids From Moon Base

Agence France-Press reports: The Russian space agency Roscosmos is planning to install a nuclear-powered observatory on its future moon base to held spot deadly Earth-threatening asteroids. Establishing a permanent presence near the lunar south pole has been a priority for Roscosmos ever since NASA announced plans to return to the moon earlier this year. The base’s telescopes will work in …

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Twitter Moves To Thwart Spoofing Of US Candidates

The Associated Press reports: Twitter is bringing back special labels to help users identify accounts and tweets from U.S. political candidates. The company, which first used such labels for the midterms last year, said it is trying to provide users with original sources of information and prevent spoofed and fake accounts from fooling voters. Many political candidates already have blue …

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RUSSIA: Pre-Installed Russian Software Mandated For All Electronics Sold In Country, Per Law Signed By Putin

Reuters reports: Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday signed legislation requiring all smartphones, computers and smart TV sets sold in the country to come pre-installed with Russian software. The law, which will come into force on July 1 next year, has been met with resistance by some electronics retailers, who say the legislation was adopted without consulting them. The country’s …

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Online Sales Set $7.4 Billion Black Friday Record

The Associated Press reports: This year’s Black Friday was the biggest ever for online sales, and Adobe Analytics says carts filled on phones, computers and tablets rang up $7.4 billion in transactions. That ranks just behind the $7.9 billion haul of last year’s Cyber Monday, which holds the one-day record for online sales. Adobe measures sales at 80 of the …

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One-Third Of Online Product Reviews Are Paid Or Fake

The New York Times reports: In the world of e-commerce, the online review is king, the internet’s answer to walking into a store and trying out a product for yourself. An increase of just one star in a rating on Amazon correlates with a 26 percent increase in sales, according to a recent analysis by the e-commerce consulting firm Pattern. …

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Twitter Seeks To Save Accounts Of Deceased Users

Axios reports: Twitter said Wednesday it was putting on hold a plan to delete inactive accounts amid concerns that accounts from deceased users would be swept up in the purge. Why it matters: While it’s great to see Twitter clearing out the accounts of living people who aren’t using them, Twitter also represents an important record of those no longer …

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Tesla “Cybertruck” Launch Event Goes Badly [VIDEO]

CNBC reports: Tesla unveiled its futuristic pickup truck at a promotional event in Los Angeles, but when it came to showing off the vehicle’s durability, things didn’t quite go as planned. CEO Elon Musk claimed the car was “bulletproof” against a 9mm handgun. But when he got Tesla’s chief designer to throw a metal ball at one of its armored …

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Twitter Rolls Out Anti-Troll “Hide Replies” Function

TechCrunch reports: Twitter’s radical “Hide Replies” feature, one of the biggest changes to how Twitter works since the invention of the Retweet, is now available to Twitter’s global user base. The company says the feature will roll out to all Twitter users across platforms by today, with only one slight tweak since earlier tests. Designed to balance the conversation on …

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Ford Gambles Big With All-Electric Mustang [VIDEO]

Yahoo Finance reports: Ford took its time. But for its first electric vehicle, the 116-year old automaker did something a little controversial. The Mustang Mach-E is an all-new, fully-electric crossover that Ford says is part of the “Mustang family.” That means it has some styling cues from the famous pony car, but that’s about it. It’s not a coupe, convertible, …

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Google To Offer Personal Checking Accounts In 2020

Reuters reports: Alphabet Inc’s Google said on Wednesday it will offer personal checking accounts next year through its Google Pay app in partnership with Citigroup Inc and a small credit union at Stanford University. The project, named Cache, comes as rivals Facebook and Apple are expanding their own efforts in consumer finance, a broad area that ranges from digital payment …

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Instagram To Test Hiding “Likes” Counter On Posts

NPR reports: Like seriously, if you post something to the ‘gram and not one of your followers hits “like” is it even worth sharing? Beginning next week, some U.S. users of Instagram will be able to test this theory as the social media platform will begin hiding the “likes” counter that appears underneath a posted photo or video. “Right now …

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More US Teenagers Now Use TikTok Than Facebook

Axios reports: More young teenagers use TikTok than Facebook, according to a new report from Morning Consult. Instagram and Snapchat still beat TikTok by wide margins, but the viral Chinese karaoke app has quickly become popular amongst Generation Z. Why it matters: TikTok is following a familiar trajectory, beginning with beating out Facebook as a more popular app for young …

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