Technology News

Senate Wants Netflix, Spotify To Send Out Federal Emergency Alerts

(2 days ago)
Senators in Hawaii and South Dakota have introduced a bill, called the "Reliable Emergency Alert Distribution Improvement (READI) act, that would "explore" broadcasting alerts to "online streaming services, such as Netflix and Spotify," amongst other changes to the Emergency Alert System. TechCrunch reports: Some of the other things the bill touches on: - Users on many phones can currently disable federal alerts; they want to get rid of that option - Building a better system for reporting false alarms and figuring out what happened - Updating the system to better prevent false alarms, and to better retract them when they do happenRead more of this story at Slashdot.

Microsoft beats Wall St targets on cloud services revenue

(2 days ago)
Microsoft Corp on Thursday posted quarterly profit and revenue that beat analysts' estimates, as more businesses signed up for its Azure cloud computing services and Office 365 productivity suite.

Fukushima's Nuclear Signature Found In California Wine

(2 days ago)
An anonymous reader quotes a report from MIT Technology Review: Is it possible to see the effects of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in California wines produced at the time? Today we get an answer, thanks to a study carried out by french pharmacologist Philippe Hubert and a couple of colleagues. "In January 2017, we came across a series of Californian wines (Cabernet Sauvignon) from vintage 2009 to 2012," say Hubert and company. This set of wines provides the perfect test. The Fukushima disaster occurred on March 11, 2011. Any wine made before that date should be free of the effects, while any dating from afterward could show them. The team began their study with the conventional measurement of cesium-137 levels in the unopened bottles. That showed levels to be indistinguishable from background noise. But the team was able to carry out more-sensitive tests by opening the wine and reducing it to ash by evaporation. This involves heating the wine to 100 degrees Celsius for one hour and then increasing the temperature to 500 degrees Celsius for eight hours. In this way, a standard 750-milliliter bottle of wine produces around four grams of ashes. The ashes were then placed in a gamma ray detector to look for signs of cesium-137. Using this method, Hubert and his colleagues found measurable amounts of cesium-137 above background levels in the wine produced after 2011. "It seems there is an increase in activity in 2011 by a factor of two," conclude the team.Read more of this[..]

Microsoft quarterly results beat as cloud revenue soars

(2 days ago)
Microsoft Corp on Thursday reported quarterly profit and revenue that beat analysts' estimates, as more businesses signed up for its Azure cloud computing services and Office 365 productivity suite.

Google's Loon Brings Internet-By-Balloon To Kenya

(2 days ago)
A network of giant balloons will soon bring internet access to remote regions of rural Kenya. From a report: Google's sister-company Loon has announced its first commercial deal: partnering with Telkom Kenya to deliver connectivity to the region. The firm's antennae-dangling fleet will ride the wind high above parts of the African country. But experts have warned that the partnership could lead to a communications monopoly.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Microsoft quarterly profit rises 10 percent

(2 days ago)
Microsoft Corp reported a 10 percent rise in quarterly profit on Thursday, as more businesses signed up for its Azure cloud computing services and Office 365 productivity suite.

Killer Robots Would Be 'Dangerously Destabilizing' Force in the World, Tech Leaders Warn

(2 days ago)
Thousands of artificial intelligence experts are calling on governments to take preemptive action before it's too late. The list is extensive and includes some of the most influential names in the overlapping worlds of technology, science and academia. From a report: Among them are billionaire inventor and OpenAI founder Elon Musk, Skype co-founder Jaan Tallinn, artificial intelligence researcher Stuart Russell, as well as the three founders of Google DeepMind -- the company's premier machine learning research group. In total, more than 160 organizations and 2,460 individuals from 90 countries promised this week to not participate in or support the development and use of lethal autonomous weapons. The pledge says artificial intelligence is expected to play an increasing role in military systems and calls upon governments and politicians to introduce laws regulating such weapons "to create a future with strong international norms." "Thousands of AI researchers agree that by removing the risk, attributability, and difficulty of taking human lives, lethal autonomous weapons could become powerful instruments of violence and oppression, especially when linked to surveillance and data systems," the pledge says. "Moreover, lethal autonomous weapons have characteristics quite different from nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, and the unilateral actions of a single group could too easily spark an arms race that the international community lacks the technical tools and global[..]

Meal delivery service DoorDash hires Uber finance head as CFO

(2 days ago)
Meal delivery service DoorDash Inc has hired Uber Technologies Inc's head of finance to be its chief financial officer, which could put the startup closer to an initial public offering and deals another executive loss to Uber.

Microsoft Reveals First Known Midterm Campaign Hacking Attempts

(2 days ago)
An anonymous reader shares a report: Microsoft detected and helped block hacking attempts against three congressional candidates this year, a company executive said Thursday, marking the first known example of cyber interference in the midterm elections. "Earlier this year, we did discover that a fake Microsoft domain had been established as the landing page for phishing attacks," said Tom Burt, Microsoft's vice president for security and trust, at the Aspen Security Forum. "And we saw metadata that suggested those phishing attacks were being directed at three candidates who are all standing for election in the midterm elections." Burt declined to name the targets but said they were "people who, because of their positions, might have been interesting targets from an espionage standpoint as well as an election disruption standpoint." Microsoft took down the fake domain and worked with the federal government to block the phishing messages.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Meal delivery service DoorDash hires Uber finance head as CFO

(2 days ago)
Meal delivery service DoorDash Inc has hired Uber Technologies Inc's head of finance to be its chief financial officer, which could put the startup closer to an initial public offering and deals another executive loss to Uber.

Exclusive: Tesla's battery maker suspends cobalt supplier amid sanctions concern

(2 days ago)
Panasonic said it was unable to determine how much of the cobalt used in batteries it makes for Tesla cars comes from Cuba, a country subject to U.S. sanctions, and that it had suspended relations with a Canadian supplier as a result of its concerns.

Fiat Chrysler kicks off Magneti Marelli spin-off

(2 days ago)
Fiat Chrysler (FCA) has kicked off its planned spin-off of parts maker Magneti Marelli which will be registered in the Netherlands and listed on the Milan stock exchange, a document outlining initial plans and seen by Reuters showed.

Tesla says Model 3 refunds not outpacing deposits

(2 days ago)
Tesla Inc denied on Thursday that refunds of bookings of its Model 3 sedan were now outpacing reservations, responding to a report earlier in the day by a Wall Street brokerage citing channel checks on the electric carmaker.

Tech Chief Role Grows More Strategic, Survey Finds

(2 days ago)
The rise of digital capabilities continues to elevate the role of IT leaders across the enterprise, moving them beyond back-office tech hubs and increasingly closer to products, services and customers, Korn/Ferry International reports. WSJ: In a recent survey, 83% of 199 technology chiefs said their role was more strategic than it was three years ago. Another 67% said they were on their company's executive committee, up from 55% in a similar survey last year, the executive-search firm said. As they shift from back-office technicians, 81% said they are now playing a greater role with customers, products and services than they were three years ago. The survey included responses from chief information officers, as well as chief technology and chief digital officers, at large businesses in a range of industries. "Based on the need to drive results, many companies are leveraging and deploying results-oriented technology leaders to drive the intersection of technology, product and digital efforts," Craig Stephenson, Korn Ferry managing director, North America Technology Officers Practice, told CIO Journal. He said the impact and scope of CIOs, CTOs and CDOs on the business side of operations is evolving rapidly and expected to expand even more in the years ahead. Further reading: Nicholas Carr was right --IT died, but was resurrectedRead more of this story at Slashdot.

Meal delivery service DoorDash hires Uber's finance head as CFO

(2 days ago)
Meal delivery service DoorDash has hired Uber's head of finance to be its chief financial officer, putting the startup closer to an initial public offering and dealing another executive loss to Uber Technologies Inc.

Meal delivery service DoorDash hires Uber's finance head as CFO

(2 days ago)
Meal delivery service DoorDash has hired Uber's head of finance to be its chief financial officer, putting the startup closer to an initial public offering and dealing another executive loss to Uber Technologies Inc.

U.S. energy regulator wants more disclosure of cyber attacks

(2 days ago)
The U.S. government on Thursday asked power generators to disclose more information about cyber attacks amid growing concern that foreign hackers could disrupt the electric grid.

Hackers Breach Russian Bank and Steal $1 Million Due To Outdated Router

(2 days ago)
Catalin Cimpanu, reporting for BleepingComputer: A notorious hacker group known as MoneyTaker has stolen roughly $1 million from a Russian bank after breaching its network via an outdated router. The victim of the hack is PIR Bank, which lost at least $920,000 in money it had stored in a corresponding account at the Bank of Russia. Group-IB, a Russian cyber-security firm that was called in to investigate the incident, says that after studying infected workstations and servers at PIR Bank, they collected "irrefutable digital evidence implicating MoneyTaker in the theft." Group-IB are experts in MoneyTaker tactics because they unmasked the group's existence and operations last December when they published a report on their past attacks.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Veon cuts management in return to traditional telecoms model

(2 days ago)
Veon, the mobile phone operator formerly known as VimpelCom, said it would cut management jobs and simplify its structure as it goes back to basics with a focus on telecom services in emerging markets.

PUBG game apologises for 'offensive mask'

(2 days ago)
The makers of a popular online game apologise after an in-game item upsets some Korean fans.

Money to help Trump immigrants rejected

(2 days ago)
A software company criticised for working with US Border Control has a donation to a refugee charity rejected.

Fortnite: Schools 'could learn lessons from gaming'

(2 days ago)
Should teachers in Wales adopt some of the techniques from gaming to make lessons more engaging?

Farnborough Airshow: Aston Martin unveils sports car for the skies

(2 days ago)
James Bond's favourite car company has plans to develop small aircraft with engine giant Rolls-Royce.

Google committed a very serious offence says Vestager

(2 days ago)
The EU's competition chef explains why she believes Google deserves a record-sized fine over Android.

Business booming for giant cargo planes

(2 days ago)
$7tn of goods travel by air every year. Much of it goes in the hold of normal airliners. But for those big, awkward loads, something rather larger is required.

GV, Formerly Known as Google Ventures, For Years Has Used an Algorithm That Effectively Permits or Prohibits Both New and Follow-on Investments

(2 days ago)
Dan Primack, reporting for Axios: When most venture capitalists want approval to make a new investment, they go to their partners. When venture capitalists at GV do it, they go to something called "The Machine." Axios has learned that the firm, formerly known as Google Ventures, for years has used an algorithm that effectively permits or prohibits both new and follow-on investments. Staffers plug in all sorts of deal details into "The Machine" -- which is programmed with all sorts of market data, and returns traffic signal-like outputs. Green means go. Red means stop. Yellow means proceed with caution, but sources say it's usually the practical equivalent of red. It was initially designed and used as a due diligence assistant that could be overruled but, according to three sources, it has evolved into a de facto investment committee.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

UK criticises security of Huawei telecoms products

(2 days ago)
The report revealed shortcomings in the Chinese firm's engineering processes.

Leading U.S. coding boot camps Galvanize, Hack Reactor to merge

(2 days ago)
Denver-based computer coding training school Galvanize is to acquire competitor Hack Reactor in a deal that brings together two of the largest privately held coding boot camps, the two companies told Reuters.

Comcast scraps Fox bid amid takeover battle with Disney

(2 days ago)
** Shares of Twenty-First Century Fox and UK's Sky dip after Comcast says abandons bid for Fox assets

Project 'Fuchsia': Google is Quietly Working on a Successor To Android

(2 days ago)
A day after the European Commission fined Google over Android, more details about Fuchsia, a new operating system the company has been working on for several years has emerged. From the report: But members of the Fuchsia team have discussed a grander plan that is being reported here for the first time: Creating a single operating system capable of running all the company's in-house gadgets, like Pixel phones and smart speakers, as well as third-party devices that now rely on Android and another system called Chrome OS, according to people familiar with the conversations. According to one of the people, engineers have said they want to embed Fuchsia on connected home devices, such as voice-controlled speakers, within three years, then move on to larger machines such as laptops. Ultimately the team aspires to swap in their system for Android, the software that powers more than three quarters of the world's smartphones, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing internal matters. The aim is for this to happen in the next half decade, one person said. But Pichai and Hiroshi Lockheimer, his deputy who runs Android and Chrome, have yet to sign off on any road map for Fuchsia, these people said. The executives have to move gingerly on any plan to overhaul Android because the software supports dozens of hardware partners, thousands of developers -- and billions of mobile-ad dollars. [...] Still, Fuchsia is more than a basement skunkworks effort. Pichai has voiced his[..]

Leading U.S. coding boot camps Galvanize, Hack Reactor to merge

(2 days ago)
Denver-based computer coding training school Galvanize is to acquire competitor Hack Reactor in a deal that brings together two of the largest privately held coding boot camps, the two companies told Reuters.

Trump slams EU over $5 billion fine on Google

(2 days ago)
U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday criticized the European Union and said the bloc was taking advantage of the United States, pointing to the record $5 billion fine European antitrust regulators imposed on Google.

Amazon Web Services Isn't Making a 'Commercial' Networking Switch, Cisco Says

(2 days ago)
A week after a report claimed that Amazon Web Services was building its own bare-bones networking switch in a potential threat to networking giant companies, Cisco says it has checked with Amazon, with which it has long maintained a relationship, and it has been assured by the ecommerce giant that is not entering its territory. From a report: AWS CEO Andy Jassy and Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins had a "recent call" from which Robbins walked away satisfied that AWS wasn't "actively building a commercial network switch," Marketwatch reported Wednesday, citing a statement from Cisco that it confirmed as authentic with AWS. That follows a report last week from The Information that AWS was working on a so-called "white-box switch," which the site portrayed as a frontal assault on Cisco that sent networking stocks slumping on a lazy summer Friday afternoon.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Comcast concedes to Disney in bidding war for Fox assets

(2 days ago)
Comcast Corp dropped its $66-billion bid for Twenty-First Century Fox Inc's entertainment assets on Thursday and said it would press on with its bid for European broadcaster Sky Plc , which Fox partly owns.

Trump Slams EU Over $5 Billion Fine on Google

(2 days ago)
U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday criticized the European Union and said the bloc was taking advantage of the United States, pointing to the record $5 billion fine European antitrust regulators imposed on Google. From a report: European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is scheduled to meet with Trump at the White House next Wednesday to discuss trade and other issues. "I told you so! The European Union just slapped a Five Billion Dollar fine on one of our great companies, Google. They truly have taken advantage of the U.S., but not for long!" Trump said in a post on Twitter .Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Bye Siri, Says Apple AI's Last Remaining Founder

(2 days ago)
Tom Gruber, the last of three Siri voice assistant co-founders still at Apple, has retired from his role as head of Siri's Advanced Development group, The Information reports. From a report: The 59-year-old will pursue personal interests in photography and ocean conservation, the publication said citing unnamed sources. Gruber's departure comes as the Siri group is seeing a major haul in its leadership under new boss John Giannandrea, formerly Google's head of AI and search. Dag Kittlaus and Adam Cheyer, with whom Gruber founded the original Siri Inc before it was bought over by Apple in 2010, left the iPhone maker years ago in 2011 and 2012 respectively.Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Trump slams EU over $5 billion fine on Google

(2 days ago)
U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday criticized the European Union and said the bloc was taking advantage of the United States, pointing to the record $5 billion fine European antitrust regulators imposed on Google.

Qualcomm disappointed with continuing EU probe into pricing case

(2 days ago)
U.S. chipmaker Qualcomm on Thursday expressed disappointment with EU antitrust regulators' decision to continue an investigation in a case where it has been accused of charging below cost prices to stymy British phone software maker Icera.
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