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News (TechCrunch)

  • Reasons to be cheerful


     I know, I know, it’s been a rough year. Fury, discord, and hatred seem to be on the rise. The super-elite keep getting richer, while young workers keep getting poorer, and economic mobility has plummeted. “The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.” And yet. Quietly, stubbornly, defying the headlines, bit by bit, around the world, slow… Read More
  • Your next computer could be in a data center


     Most of the apps on your phone already rely on a server component to store and process your data. When you post a video on Facebook, it gets re-encoded into multiple formats on the server so that other users can stream your video in SD, HD, etc. But I think this trend is going to become even more important in the coming years, with all your devices acting as a simple screen into your stuff… Read More
  • Tempow turns your dumb Bluetooth speakers into a connected sound system


     Meet Tempow, a French startup that can make your Bluetooth speakers more versatile. The company has been working on a new implementation of the Bluetooth protocol in order to let you play music from your phone on multiple speakers and headphones at once. Bluetooth speakers have become a common gift and a hit item in consumer electronics stores. Most people now have multiple Bluetooth speakers… Read More
  • Tech and politics clash in Cameroon as government restores internet


     The government of Cameroon ended its internet blackout of parts of the country last week, according to news reports and confirmation from the country’s Ambassador to the U.S.The three month outage forced the hand of Africa’s largest telecom, halted operations of its leading e-commerce startup, and created digital refugees. Read More
  • Climate marches draw hundreds of thousands on Donald Trump’s 100th day in office


     Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators marched in cities around the country marking President Donald Trump’s 100th day in office with protests against his environmental policies. In Washington, organizers of the climate march estimated some 200,000 people showed up to march, clogging  the streets and snarling traffic on a sweltering day where temperatures threatened to break records.… Read More
  • Wikipedia has been blocked in Turkey


     Wikipedia, the online user-generated encyclopedia, has been blocked by the Turkish government. News of the blockage was first reported by the website Turkey Blocks, at around 1AM Eastern this morning. Confirmed: All editions of the #Wikipedia online encyclopedia blocked in #Turkey as of 8:00AM local timehttps://t.co/ybFolRmsOs pic.twitter.com/hI9tn4bHe5 — Turkey Blocks… Read More
  • Snapchat is stifled by its un-algorithmic feed


     Snapchat invented its best products by being the anti-Facebook. Its disappearing chats made visual communication quick and casual compared to Facebook’s email-esque text messages. Stories ditched the likes and permanacy so you could share your raw moments in the now, instead of just the life highlights that define you forever on your Facebook Timeline. Read More
  • Giant companies that won’t buy your startup


     Huge companies in fast-changing, technology-intensive businesses buy startups. After all, they have the money and need fresh entrepreneurial talent to tap new markets and stay abreast of disruption. That’s the collective wisdom about M&A in venture capital and startup circles. It’s also how the venture business survives. But what if the common wisdom isn’t true? Read More
  • Ballz is my new digital enemy and favorite mobile game


     I’ve played my fair share of iPhone games, but few have taken over my mind and life like Ballz.From Ketchapp, Ballz is about as simple as it is infuriating. It’s a mix between old-school Pong and Threes.The player starts with a single ball at the bottom of the screen and a number of blocks, each with a number, floating at the top of the screen. Pulling back with a finger and… Read More
  • Middle East startups are growing fast, and that’s even before the flying taxis arrive


     The flight from Tehran to Dubai is about two hours, similar to the flight from New York to Chicago. The flight from Cairo to Beirut is one hour and 15 minutes. In more peaceful times, the drive from Beirut to Damascus in Syria would take you less than two hours. The interconnectedness of the Middle East / North Africa (MENA) region is apparent once you start travelling around —… Read More
  • How Echo Look could feed Amazon’s big data fueled fashion ambitions


     This week Amazon took the wraps off a new incarnation of its Alexa voice assistant, giving the AI an eye so it can see as well as speak and hear. The Echo Look also contains a depth sensor that’s being used, in the first instance, to create a bokeh effect for a hands-free style selfies feature that Amazon is hoping will sell the device to fashion lovers, by making their outfits pop… Read More
  • How GE avoided Kodak’s fate


     George Eastman founded Kodak in 1888 in Rochester, New York. Four years later and 200 miles down the road, Thomas Edison and some pals founded General Electric. The two industrial giants chugged along for more than 100 years, but GE is still here and Kodak is (mostly) gone, flushed down the disruption pipes of late-20th-century digitization. How did GE manage to avoid the same fate? Read More
  • Crunch Report | Elon Musk’s Tunnel Vision Gets Rendered


    Elon Musk shows off a video about his tunnel boring company, The Boring Company, a self-driving Apple test vehicle is spotted in the wild and Cloudera and Carvana each price their IPO at $15; one does well, the other not so much. All this on Crunch Report. Read More
  • Military social network wants you to hire a vet for your next tech opening


     Veteran-focused social platform Sandboxx wants to pair its community members with experts who can ease their transition back into the workforce — and hopefully even land them a job.Global firm Betts Recruiting will join the self-described “military media and technology company” to empower vets to seek careers in the tech industry and to demonstrate their unique value to… Read More
  • City of Portland may subpoena Uber for details on Greyball program


     The Rose City isn’t happy with Uber… again. After the company failed to turn over details on its deeply sketchy “Greyball” software by Portland’s deadline, the city may seek to compel Uber to hand it over with a subpoena. Those intentions, reported by the Oregonian, were articulated by Portland Commissioner Dan Saltzman, who oversees the city’s Bureau… Read More
  • Former NSA director explains why the spy agency will end a controversial surveillance technique


     Earlier today, the NSA announced its intentions to limit a surveillance technique that had a nasty side effect of sweeping up communications to and from Americans. In a rare unprompted press statement, the NSA explained that it would halt “any upstream internet communications that are solely ‘about’ a foreign intelligence target,” restricting its surveillance to… Read More
  • Amazon is shutting down its ‘Underground Actually Free’ program that gives away free Android apps


     Amazon announced it will be shutting down its “Underground Actually Free” program, which offers customers free versions of Android apps that would typically cost money, including those that relied on in-app purchases but were otherwise free downloads. Though it promised long-term support when it debuted back in August 2015, Amazon today says the “Actually Free” program… Read More
  • Jack Dorsey just spent $9.5M buying more Twitter stock


     Jack Dorsey is at it again — after purchasing $7 million in Twitter stock back in February, the Twitter CEO bought another $9.5 million today. After making his purchase, Dorsey posted the news on Facebook Twitter, sparking a one percent gain in the company’s share price in after-hours trading. According to an SEC filing, Dorsey purchased 574,002 shares of Twitter stock… Read More
  • Someone scraped 40,000 Tinder selfies to make a facial dataset for AI experiments


     Tinder users have many motives for uploading their likeness to the dating app. But contributing a facial biometric to a downloadable data set for training convolutional neural networks probably wasn’t top of their list when they signed up to swipe. Read More
  • Tencent to open AI research center in Seattle


     Chinese tech conglomerate Tencent will be opening a new AI research center in Seattle, according to The Information. The company has long had a core office in Palo Alto, but this will be its first major machine intelligence R&D effort in the country. Earlier this week Tencent announced that it would open its first data center in Silicon Valley. Read More