Tech News Feed

Ford GT sale puts John Cena in a legal cage match - Roadshow

CNET News - Sun, 2018-02-18 12:00
It's now up to the courts to decide whether wrestling star John Cena can sell his new Ford GT supercar for a healthy profit.

Dodge Demon hits 203 mph in about a minute - Roadshow

CNET News - Sun, 2018-02-18 12:00
You'll need to do a couple things to make your own Demon capable of that speed, though.

Who Killed The Junior Developer?

SlashDot - Sun, 2018-02-18 11:40
Melissa McEwen, writing on Medium: A few months ago I attended an event for women in tech. A lot of the attendees were new developers, graduates from code schools or computer science programs. Almost everyone told me they were having trouble getting their first job. I was lucky. My first "real" job out of college was "Junior Application developer" at Columbia University in 2010. These days it's a rare day to find even a job posting for a junior developer position. People who advertise these positions say they are inundated with resumes. But on the senior level companies complain they can't find good developers. Gee, I wonder why? I'm not really sure the exact economics of this, because I don't run these companies. But I know what companies have told me: "we don't hire junior developers because we can't afford to have our senior developers mentor them." I've seen the rates for senior developers because I am one and I had project managers that had me allocate time for budgeting purposes. I know the rate is anywhere from $190-$300 an hour. That's what companies believe they are losing on junior devs.

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After Math: Market fluctuations

Engadget - Sun, 2018-02-18 11:00
It's been a volatile week for us all, what with the stock market's unpredictable undulations, the US Senate's DACA drama, the Olympics hacking and whatever other craziness that's sure to happen between the time I file this post and Sunday morning. It...

Google's firing of James Damore was legal, labor board says - CNET

CNET News - Sun, 2018-02-18 10:55
The US National Labor Relations Board says Google fired the author of a controversial diversity memo not to silence a dissenter, but over "unprotected discriminatory statements."

US's Greatest Vulnerability is Ignoring the Cyber Threats From Our Adversaries, Foreign Policy Expert Says

SlashDot - Sun, 2018-02-18 10:40
America's greatest vulnerability is its continued inability to acknowledge the extent of its adversaries' capabilities when it comes to cyber threats, says Ian Bremmer, founder and president of leading political risk firm Eurasia Group. From a report: Speaking to CNBC from the Munich Security Conference on Saturday, the prominent American political scientist emphasized that there should be much more government-level concern and urgency over cyber risk. The adversarial states in question are what U.S. intelligence agencies call the "big four": Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran. "We're vulnerable because we continue to underestimate the capabilities in those countries. WannaCry, from North Korea -- no one in the U.S. cybersecurity services believed the North Koreans could actually do that," Bremmer described, naming the ransomware virus that crippled more than 200,000 computer systems across 150 countries in May of 2017. Borge Brende, president of the World Economic Forum, weighed in, stressing the economic cost of cyber crimes. "It is very hard to attribute cyberattacks to different actors or countries, but the cost is just unbelievable. Annually more than a thousand billion U.S. dollars are lost for companies or countries due to these attacks and our economy is more and more based on internet and data."

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Mattel's 'Jurassic World' dino-bots are surprisingly realistic

Engadget - Sun, 2018-02-18 10:00
Mattel's last Kamigami STEM robot was an adorable DIY lady bug. Now, the toy company is aiming for something bigger with its new Jurassic World bots. You'll still have to put them together first, but what you end up with is a complex robo-dino with r...

New AI Model Fills in Blank Spots in Photos

SlashDot - Sun, 2018-02-18 09:43
A new technology uses artificial intelligence to generate synthetic images that can pass as real. From a report, shared by a reader (the link may be paywalled): The technology was developed by a team led by Hiroshi Ishikawa, a professor at Japan's Waseda University. It uses convolutional neural networks, a type of deep learning, to predict missing parts of images. The technology could be used in photo-editing apps. It can also be used to generate 3-D images from real 2-D images. The team at first prepared some 8 million images of real landscapes, human faces and other subjects. Using special software, the team generated numerous versions for each image, randomly adding artificial blanks of various shapes, sizes and positions. With all the data, the model took three months to learn how to predict the blanks so that it could fill them in and make the resultant images look identical to the originals. The model's learning algorithm first predicts and fills in blanks. It then evaluates how consistent the added part is with its surroundings.

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FDA Okays First Concussion Blood Test--but Some Experts Are Wary

Scientifc America - Sun, 2018-02-18 09:00
The screening tool may not pick up minor concussions

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

We've Reached Peak Smartphone

SlashDot - Sun, 2018-02-18 08:15
You don't really need a new smartphone. From a column on the Washington Post (may be paywalled): Sure, some of them squeeze more screen into a smaller form. The cameras keep getting better, if you look very close. And you had to live under a rock to miss the hoopla for Apple's 10th-anniversary iPhone X or the Samsung Galaxy S8. Many in the smartphone business were sure this latest crop would bring a "super cycle" of upgrades. But here's the reality: More and more of Americans have decided we don't need to upgrade every year. Or every other year. We're no longer locked into two-year contracts and phones are way sturdier than they used to be. And the new stuff just isn't that tantalizing even to me, a professional gadget guy. Holding onto our phones is better for our budgets, not to mention the environment. This just means we -- and phone makers -- need to start thinking of them more like cars. We may have reached peak smartphone. Global shipments slipped 0.1 percent in 2017 -- the first ever decline, according to research firm IDC. In the United States, smartphone shipments grew just 1.6 percent, the smallest increase ever. Back in 2015, Americans replaced their phones after 23.6 months, on average, according to research firm Kantar Worldpanel. By the end of 2017, we were holding onto them for 25.3 months.

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Device provides years of power through temperature swings

Engadget - Sun, 2018-02-18 07:58
Eventually, you might not need a battery or a conspicuous external power source to keep a device running for years on end. A team at MIT has created a device that produces energy by exploiting the temperature swings that occur between day and night....

Facebook Plans To Use US Mail To Verify IDs of Election Ad Buyers

SlashDot - Sun, 2018-02-18 05:00
Facebook will start using postcards sent by U.S. mail later this year to verify the identities and location of people who want to purchase U.S. election-related advertising on its site, a senior company executive said on Saturday. From a report: The postcard verification is Facebook's latest effort to respond to criticism from lawmakers, security experts and election integrity watchdog groups that it and other social media companies failed to detect and later responded slowly to Russia's use of their platforms to spread divisive political content, including disinformation, during the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

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Electronic skin can display a heartbeat on your hand

Engadget - Sun, 2018-02-18 04:50
Electronic skins might not only detect health troubles in the near future, but display them for the world to see. University of Tokyo researchers have developed an e-skin that can measure vital signs like your heartbeat and display them in real time...

Google is Making it Easier For 911 To Find You in an Emergency

SlashDot - Sun, 2018-02-18 01:43
An anonymous reader shares a report: When you call 911 from a cellphone, your location is typically sent to the call taker by a wireless carrier. But that information isn't always so accurate. Well Google might have a better way of going about it and it tested its system across a few states in December and January, the Wall Street Journal reports. In the states where the tests took place, Google sent location data from a random selection of 911 callers using Android phones straight to the people taking those calls. The test included 50 call centers that cover around 2.4 million people in Texas, Tennessee and Florida, and early reports of the results suggest the system is promising. One company involved in the test told the Wall Street Journal that for over 80 percent of the 911 calls where Googl's system was used, the tech giant's location data were more accurate than what wireless carriers provided. The company, RapidSOS, also said that while carrier data location estimates had, on average, a radius of around 522 feet, Google's data gave estimates with radii around 121 feet. Google's data also arrived more quickly than carrier data typically did.

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Website follows journey of Elon Musk's Tesla Roadster through space

Engadget - Sun, 2018-02-18 00:21
Elon Musk's Tesla Roadster may have slipped the surly bonds of Earth, but you can still follow its path through the Solar System. Satellite guru Ben Pearson's unofficial Whereisroadster.com website is tracking the EV based on NASA data and his own fl...

PowerUp releases its phone-controlled paper airplane

Engadget - Sat, 2018-02-17 22:02
PowerUp first previewed its smartphone-controlled paper airplane back in 2014, but now it's finally available to everyone. The startup has announced that a retail version of its Dart aircraft will ship in February, and is running a pre-order campaign...

Ancient city's LiDAR scans reveal as many buildings as Manhattan

Engadget - Sat, 2018-02-17 20:33
When researchers surveyed the ruins of a Purépecha Empire city in Mexico the old-fashioned way a decade ago, it took them two seasons to explore two square kilometres. Good thing they decided to use LiDAR, because the city called Angamuco turn...

Silicon Valley Singles Are Giving Up On the Algorithms of Love

SlashDot - Sat, 2018-02-17 20:30
The Washington Post: Melissa Hobley, an executive at the dating app OkCupid, hears the complaints about the apps [being unable to find good matches] regularly and thinks they get a bad rap. Silicon Valley workers "are in the business of scalable, quick solutions. And that's not what love is," Hobley said. "You can't hurry love. It's reciprocal. You're not ordering an object. You're not getting a delivery in less than seven minutes." Finding love, she added, takes commitment and energy -- and, yes, time, no matter how inefficiently it's spent. "You have a whole city obsessed with algorithms and data, and they like to say dating apps aren't solving the problem," Hobley said. "But if a city is male-dominant, if a city is known for 16-hour work days, those are issues that dating apps can't solve." One thing distinguishes the Silicon Valley dating pool: The men-to-women ratio for employed, young singles in the San Jose metro area is higher than in any other major area. There were about 150 men for every 100 women, compared with about 125 to 100 nationwide, of never-married young people between 25 and 34 in San Jose, U.S. Census Bureau data from 2016 shows. That ratio permeates the economy here, all the way to the valley's biggest employers, which have struggled for years to bring more women into their ranks. Men make up about 70% of the workforces of Apple, Facebook and Google parent Alphabet, company filings show.

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Sennheiser’s ultimate ‘ear bud’ - CNET

CNET News - Sat, 2018-02-17 20:25
The Sennheiser IE800 S throws a party for your ears.

Deep Neural Networks for Bot Detection

SlashDot - Sat, 2018-02-17 19:01
From a research paper on Arxiv: The problem of detecting bots, automated social media accounts governed by software but disguising as human users, has strong implications. For example, bots have been used to sway political elections by distorting online discourse, to manipulate the stock market, or to push anti-vaccine conspiracy theories that caused health epidemics. Most techniques proposed to date detect bots at the account level, by processing large amount of social media posts, and leveraging information from network structure, temporal dynamics, sentiment analysis, etc. In this paper [PDF], we propose a deep neural network based on contextual long short-term memory (LSTM) architecture that exploits both content and metadata to detect bots at the tweet level: contextual features are extracted from user metadata and fed as auxiliary input to LSTM deep nets processing the tweet text.

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