Technology News

Amazon suffers glitch during summer marketing event

(27 minutes ago)
Amazon.com Inc on Monday said it was working to fix a technical issue that had prevented some shoppers from placing orders during the company's summer marketing event, Prime Day.

Uber Faces Federal Investigation Over Alleged Gender Discrimination

(33 minutes ago)
According to The Wall Street Journal, Uber is being investigated by U.S. authorities over a complaint about gender discrimination (Warning: source may be paywalled; alternative source). The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is leading the investigation, which began last August but hasn't been previously reported. From the report: EEOC investigators have been interviewing former and current Uber employees as well as seeking documents from Uber officials, these people said. The investigators have been seeking information related to hiring practices, pay disparity and other matters as they relate to gender, one person said. Uber, which hopes to debut on the public markets sometime in the second half of next year, is already is facing at least five other federal investigations by multiple agencies into its pricing practices, accusations of bribery by Uber executives abroad, and its use of software designed to evade local officials tracking its operations, among other matters. The EEOC, tasked with enforcing federal laws against discrimination, generally responds to confidential complaints filed by workers against employers, and can file suit or seek private arbitration. Of roughly 90,000 complaints filed annually, a fraction result in a settlement or EEOC-led lawsuit. It is unclear whether the EEOC intends to take any action against Uber, which would be one of the agency's most prominent recent cases.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Amazon suffers glitch during summer marketing event

(33 minutes ago)
Amazon.com Inc on Monday said it was working to fix a technical issue that had prevented some shoppers from placing orders during the company's summer marketing event, Prime Day.

Amazon's Curious Case of the $2,630.52 Used Paperback

(One hour ago)
Many booksellers on Amazon strive to sell their wares as cheaply as possible. That, after all, is usually how you make a sale in a competitive marketplace. Other merchants favor a counterintuitive approach: Mark the price up to the moon. From a report: "Zowie," the romance author Deborah Macgillivray wrote on Twitter last month after she discovered copies of her 2009 novel, "One Snowy Knight," being offered for four figures. One was going for "$2,630.52 & FREE Shipping," she noted. Since other copies of the paperback were being sold elsewhere on Amazon for as little as 99 cents, she was perplexed. "How many really sell at that price? Are they just hoping to snooker some poor soul?" Ms. Macgillivray wrote in an email. She noted that her blog had gotten an explosion in traffic from Russia. "Maybe Russian hackers do this in their spare time, making money on the side," she said. Amazon is by far the largest marketplace for both new and used books the world has ever seen, and is also one of the most inscrutable. The retailer directly sells some books, while others are sold by third parties. The wild pricing happens with the latter. [...] Third-party sellers, Guru Hariharan, chief executive of Boomerang Commerce, said, come in all shapes and sizes -- from well-respected national brands that are trying to maintain some independence from Amazon to entrepreneurial individuals who use Amazon's marketplace as an arbitrage opportunity. These sellers list products they have access[..]

Netflix shares tank after subscriber numbers miss targets

(One hour ago)
Netflix Inc's subscriber growth and forecast fell short of Wall Street expectations, sending shares of the normally high-flying stock crashing 14 percent on Monday.

BitPay granted virtual currency license by NY regulator

(One hour ago)
The New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) said on Monday it had granted a virtual currency license to bitcoin payments processor BitPay.

Netflix shares tank after subscriber numbers miss targets

(One hour ago)
Netflix Inc's subscriber growth and forecast fell short of Wall Street expectations, sending shares of the normally high-flying stock crashing 14 percent on Monday.

Netflix subscriber growth misses estimates; shares tumble

(One hour ago)
Netflix Inc missed Wall Street forecasts for U.S. and international subscribers, saying it had overestimated the pace of new additions for April through June but remained confident in long-term growth.

Amazon Suffers Glitches at the Start of Prime Day

(One hour ago)
It's not just you. Amazon Prime Day started 15 minutes ago, and so far, it's not going well for Amazon. From a report: The landing page for Prime Day does not work. When most links are clicked, readers are sent to an error page or to a landing page that sends readers back to the main landing page. Direct links to the product pages, either from outside links or the single product placement on the landing page, seem to work fine. This is a huge blow to Amazon and its faux holiday Prime Day. The retailer has been pushing this event for weeks and there are some great deals to be had. It's not a good look for the world's largest retailer. Both the desktop website and mobile app are facing glitches, users said. Prime Day, which began just now, is a 36-hour shopping event. CNBC reports: Some users saw an error page featuring the "dogs of Amazon" and were never able to enter the site. Some got caught in a loop of pages urging them to "Shop all deals." Clicking the entry link for a specific category returned the user to the first page urging them to "Shop all deals." Some users successfully added items to their cart, only to receive an error message when trying to checkout and complete the purchase. Business Insider reports that several customers are threatening Amazon that they would cancel their Prime membership if the company is unable to resolve the glitches soon. Bloomberg offers some context on the significance of the any outrages on Amazon's website today: Trouble on the site[..]

Jeff Bezos Becomes the Richest Man In Modern History, Topping $150 Billion

(One hour ago)
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Bloomberg: Jeff Bezos is the richest person in modern history. The Amazon founder's net worth broke $150 billion in New York on Monday morning, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. That's about $55 billion more than Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, the world's second-richest person. Bezos, 54, has now topped Gates in inflation-adjusted terms. The $100 billion mark that Gates hit briefly in 1999 at the height of the dot-com boom would be worth about $149 billion in today's dollars. That makes the Amazon chief executive officer richer than anyone else on earth since at least 1982, when Forbes published its inaugural wealth ranking. Bezos crossed the threshold just as Amazon prepares to kick off its 36-hour summer sales event, Prime Day. The company's share price was $1,825.73 at 11:10 a.m. in New York, extending its 2018 gain to 56 percent and giving Bezos a $150.8 billion fortune. A little more than a week ago, Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg overtook Warren Buffett to become the world's third-richest person.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Netflix subscriber growth misses estimates; shares tumble

(One hour ago)
Netflix Inc missed Wall Street forecasts for U.S. and international subscribers, saying it had overestimated the pace of new additions for April through June but remained confident in long-term growth.

Prime Down: Amazon's Sale Day Turns Into Fail Day

(2 hours ago)
It's not just you. Amazon Prime Day started 15 minutes ago, and so far, it's not going well for Amazon. From a report: The landing page for Prime Day does not work. When most links are clicked, readers are sent to an error page or to a landing page that sends readers back to the main landing page. Direct links to the product pages, either from outside links or the single product placement on the landing page, seem to work fine. This is a huge blow to Amazon and its faux holiday Prime Day. The retailer has been pushing this event for weeks and there are some great deals to be had. It's not a good look for the world's largest retailer.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Tesla shares fall 3.5 percent after CEO Musk abuses British diver

(3 hours ago)
Shares of Tesla Inc fell 3.5 percent on Monday after Chief Executive Elon Musk directed abuse on Twitter at one of the British cave divers involved in the rescue of 12 Thai children last week.

Study Suggests Buried Internet Infrastructure at Risk as Sea Levels Rise

(3 hours ago)
Thousands of miles of buried fiber optic cable in densely populated coastal regions of the United States may soon be inundated by rising seas, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Oregon. From a report: The study, presented Monday at a meeting of internet network researchers, portrays critical communications infrastructure that could be submerged by rising seas in as soon as 15 years, according to the study's senior author, Paul Barford, a UW-Madison professor of computer science. "Most of the damage that's going to be done in the next 100 years will be done sooner than later," says Barford, an authority on the "physical internet" -- the buried fiber optic cables, data centers, traffic exchanges and termination points that are the nerve centers, arteries and hubs of the vast global information network. "That surprised us. The expectation was that we'd have 50 years to plan for it. We don't have 50 years." The study, conducted with Barford's former student Ramakrishnan Durairajan, now of the University of Oregon, and Carol Barford, who directs UW-Madison's Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment, is the first assessment of risk of climate change to the internet. It suggests that by the year 2033 more than 4,000 miles of buried fiber optic conduit will be underwater and more than 1,100 traffic hubs will be surrounded by water. The most susceptible U.S. cities, according to the report, are New York,[..]

Chinese online group Pinduoduo targets up to $1.63 billion in U.S. IPO

(3 hours ago)
Chinese online group discounter Pinduoduo is planning to raise up to $1.63 billion from a U.S. listing, its latest filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange showed, in what will be one of the biggest U.S. float by Chinese firms in four years.

Chinese online group Pinduoduo targets up to $1.63 billion in U.S. IPO

(3 hours ago)
Chinese online group discounter Pinduoduo is planning to raise up to $1.63 billion from a U.S. listing, its latest filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange showed, in what will be one of the biggest U.S. float by Chinese firms in four years.

Skype 8.0 Launches on Desktop With Full-HD Video; To Soon Get Encryption and Call Recording Features

(4 hours ago)
Skype's redesign launched last year was met with mixed reviews, but the company is forging ahead by rolling out a number of its new features to other platforms, including the desktop. From a report: Microsoft today is launching Skype version 8.0 that will replace version 7.0 (aka Skype classic), the latter which will no longer function after September 1, 2018. The new release introduces a variety of features, including HD video and screen-sharing in calls, support for @mentions in chats, a chat media gallery, file and media sharing up to 300 MB, and more. It will also add several more features this summer, including most notably, supported for encrypted audio calls, texts, and file sharing as well as built-in call recording. The 8.0 release follows on the update to Skype desktop that rolled out last fall, largely focusing on upgrading the visual elements of new design, like the color-coding in chat messages and "reaction" emojis. This release also included the chat media gallery and file sharing support, which are touted as new today, but may have already hit your desktop.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Microsoft's Panos Panay Says Company is Exploring Several New Form Factors in Surface Category, But a Phone Isn't One of Them

(4 hours ago)
Speaking on the sidelines of the Surface Go launch, Microsoft's Panos Panay, who heads the Surface division, once again very much reiterated that the company has moved past its smartphone ambitions. From a report: In an interview with Wired, Microsoft's Surface head Panos Panay confirmed that the company is working on new form factors. When questioned about whether this would include a new Surface Phone, Panay stated that the Surface Phone was not one that they are thinking about at this time. "I wouldn't say that it includes a Surface Phone," Panos answered in the interview. "I think you have to think about where is that unmet need when you're thinking about your product road-map," he replied. "Of course, we're always inventing, of course, we're thinking about new form factors," Panos added. "The way people will communicate in the future will change. The form factors will wrap around that. And so when you say the phone form factor changes, I would flip it a little bit and say that communication changes."Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Instapaper is Going Independent

(5 hours ago)
Popular bookmarking and read-it-later app, Instapaper made the following announcement in a blog post: Today, we're announcing that Pinterest has entered into an agreement to transfer ownership of Instapaper to Instant Paper, Inc., a new company owned and operated by the same people who've been working on Instapaper since it was sold to betaworks by Marco Arment in 2013. The ownership transfer will occur after a 21 day waiting period designed to give our users fair notice about the change of control with respect to their personal information. We want to emphasize that not much is changing for the Instapaper product outside the new ownership. The product will continue to be built and maintained by the same people who've been working on Instapaper for the past five years. We plan to continue offering a robust service that focuses on readers and the reading experience for the foreseeable future.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Uber being probed for gender discrimination: source

(5 hours ago)
Uber Technologies Inc is under investigation by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for alleged gender discrimination on issues such as pay, according to a source familiar with the matter.

Lights Slowly Come On for Puerto Ricans in Rural Areas

(6 hours ago)
Almost a year after two hurricanes ravaged the US territory, repair crews are working to energize the more than 950 homes and businesses that remain without power in hard-to-reach areas. Puerto Ricans remain fearful that their newly returned normality could be short lived. An anonymous reader shares a report: Lights are slowly coming on for the more than 950 homes and businesses across Puerto Rico that remain without power in hard-to-reach areas. Repair crews sometimes have to dig holes by hand and scale down steep mountainsides to reach damaged light posts. Electrical poles have to be ferried in one-by-one via helicopter. It is slow work, and it has stretched nearly two months past the date when officials had promised that everyone in Puerto Rico would be energized. And even as TVs glow into the night and people like delivery man Steven Vilella once again savor favorite foods like shrimp and Rocky Road ice cream, many fear their newly returned normality could be short-lived. Turmoil at the island's power company and recent winds and rains that knocked out electricity to tens of thousands of people at the start of the new hurricane season have them worried.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

BlackRock is evaluating cryptocurrencies, CEO Fink says

(6 hours ago)
BlackRock Inc Chief Executive Larry Fink on Monday said the world's largest asset manager has assembled a working group to look at blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, but cautioned he does not see massive investor demand.

Uber faces probe over alleged gender discrimination: WSJ

(6 hours ago)
Uber Technologies Inc is being investigated by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission stemming from a complaint about gender inequity, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Uber faces investigation over alleged gender discrimination: WSJ

(6 hours ago)
Uber Technologies Inc is being investigated by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission stemming from a complaint about gender inequity, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Moment of truth for Google as record EU antitrust fine looms

(6 hours ago)
Google is set to face a record-busting EU antitrust fine this week over its Android mobile operating system but rivals hoping that an order to halt unfair business practices will help them may be disappointed.

A Student Was Rejected By A College Because Of China's 'Social Credit System'

(6 hours ago)
An anonymous reader shares a report: A prestigious college in Beijing that reportedly tried to bar a student because his father was on a government blacklist is causing huge controversy in China. According to state media reports, a high school student with the surname Rao in the eastern city of Wenzhou, in Zhejiang province, was accepted on the back of his score in China's fiendishly difficult and incredibly competitive national college entrance exam. But before his family could enjoy Rao's accomplishments, the college notified them he may not be able to attend because of his father's poor credit standing -- the father owed 200,000 RMB (about $30,000) to a local bank, and had been put on a blacklist dubbed the "lost trust list" for individuals with bad social standing, state media reported. Blacklists are a key feature of China's controversial "social credit system" -- a set of government programs that sets up both incentives and disincentives to encourage people to behave in socially desirable ways. Social credit in today's China involves government programs that collect and analyze data from different parts of people's lives, including their education history, compliance with traffic rules, criminal history and debt. It has raised serious concerns over individual privacy rights.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

India's telecom regulator recommends stricter data security rules

(7 hours ago)
India's telecom regulator on Monday said the existing framework for protection of personal data by companies and service providers was insufficient and recommended stricter rules to tackle data breaches.

India's telecom regulator recommends stricter data security rules

(7 hours ago)
India's telecom regulator on Monday said the existing framework for protection of personal data by companies and service providers was insufficient and recommended stricter rules to tackle data breaches.

The EU Would Very Much Like Airbnb To Know That the Rules Are Different in Europe

(7 hours ago)
Airbnb is facing fresh regulatory pressure in Europe. But this time it's not about the short-term home rental platform's core business model -- it's about its terms and conditions, and the way the company presents pricing to consumers. From a report: On Monday, the European Commission and a number of EU consumer watchdogs accused Airbnb of breaking consumer law. If the company does not change the way it operates by the end of August, then it could face legal action. Specifically, the regulators said Airbnb must show people total prices up-front that include all charges and fees, and it must clearly tell customers whether a property is being offered by a private host or a professional. The American company's terms and conditions are illegal under EU law for a variety of reasons, the regulators added. For example, the company tells people in the EU that they cannot sue a host in cases of personal harm or other damages, and it claims it can unilaterally change its terms and conditions without giving customers a warning and the option of cancelling their contracts. These sorts of terms might fly in the U.S., but they're banned in Europe.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Salesforce agrees to acquire Datorama

(7 hours ago)
U.S. sales and marketing software company Salesforce said on Monday it signed an agreement to acquire Datorama, an Israeli cloud-based artificial intelligence marketing platform.

Amazon Admits Prime Day Deals Not Necessarily the Cheapest

(8 hours ago)
Shoppers taking part in internet giant Amazon's Prime Day are being told that the deals on offer may not be the cheapest available. From a report: Amazon said it has never claimed that Prime Day is necessarily the cheapest time to shop on its site. It comes after consumer group Which? warned customers that apparent bargains are not always as good as they seem. It said some goods can actually be cheaper at other times of the year, and advised shoppers to do their research. The 36 hour sale -- aimed at subscribers to the Prime shopping service -- offers discounts on a range of goods. The deals are time-limited, with shoppers being told that some items are only available while stocks last.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Amazon workers strike in Germany, joining action in Spain and Poland

(8 hours ago)
Thousands of workers will walk off the job on Tuesday at Amazon warehouses in Germany to demand better working conditions, joining colleagues in Spain and Poland in taking action that coincides with a major sales promotion.

BlackRock is evaluating cryptocurrencies, CEO says

(9 hours ago)
BlackRock Inc Chief Executive Larry Fink on Monday said the world's largest asset manager has assembled a working group that is looking at blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin, but cautioned he does not see massive investor demand.

Kodak Bitcoin mining 'scam' evaporates

(10 hours ago)
The company behind a Kodak-branded crypto-currency scheme confirms the plan has collapsed.

Judge Jails Defendent For Failing To Unlock Phones

(12 hours ago)
devoid42 writes: In a Tampa courtroom, Judge Gregory Holder held William Montanez in contempt of court for failure to unlock a mobile device. What led to this was a frightening slippery slope that threatens our Fourth Amendment rights to the core. Montanez was stopped for failing to yield properly. After being pulled over, the officer asked to search his car; Montanez refused, so the officer held him until a drug dog was brought in to give the officer enough probable cause to search the vehicle. They found a misdemeanor amount of marijuana, which they used to arrest Montenez, but they asked to search his two cellphones, which he also refused. They were able to secure a warrant for those as well, but Montenez claimed he had forgotten his password. The result: Montanez is being held in contempt of court and is serving a six-month jail sentence.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Global regulators start monitoring crypto assets

(12 hours ago)
Global regulators have published a framework for "vigilantly" monitoring risks from crypto assets like bitcoin <BTC=BTSP> and ether, even though they don't pose a major risk to financial stability for now.

Power to the drones: utilities place bets on robots

(13 hours ago)
Flying robots that can travel dozens of kilometers without stopping could be the next big thing for power companies.

How this Grand Theft Auto stream is highlighting US gun crime

(13 hours ago)
Professor Joseph De Lappe has created a modified GTA stream where every dead body represents a real death in 2018.

May pledges to boost aerospace amid Brexit fears

(13 hours ago)
Prime Minister promises extra investment for industry weeks after Airbus threatened to leave UK.

NHS still reliant on 'archaic' fax machines

(13 hours ago)
The outdated technology was last widely used in the 1990s.

Lift-off for Scotland: Sutherland to host first UK spaceport

(13 hours ago)
The UK Space Agency backs Scotland's north coast as the place to launch satellites to orbit.

'It was pretty crazy'

(13 hours ago)
Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi had never met before they teamed up to launch cloud storage giant Dropbox.

Active defence

(13 hours ago)
How firms are using cutting-edge techniques to stop cyber criminals breaching their networks.
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