Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
Welcome Guest!

Join us now to get access to all our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, and so, so much more. It's also quick and totally free, so what are you waiting for?

NelsonG

Admin
  • Content Count

    143,917
  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won

    7

NelsonG last won the day on April 3

NelsonG had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

10 Good

About NelsonG

  • Rank
    He's got a BIG EGO....
  • Birthday 01/15/1985

Previous Fields

  • Favorite Music Type
    Good music!
  • Favorite Artist
    Too many to list

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
    https://www.beatking.com
  • Twitter
    NelsonG

Profile Information

  • Location
    Tempe, Arizona
  • Gender
    Male

Recent Profile Visitors

54,077 profile views
  1. Mariah Carey, Eurhythmics, the Isley Brothers, Journey, others are also up for induction View the full article
  2. Weed tech is finally getting some mainstream recognition. Well, sort of. CES, the world's largest consumer electronics convention held in Las Vegas, announced KEEP Labs as a 2020 Innovation Awards Honoree in the Home Appliance Category on Thursday. It's the first time the conference has awarded a cannabis tech company. KEEP designed a smart stash box that connects to an app via WiFi and Bluetooth to allow cannabis users to responsibly contain access to their weed. The box can be unlocked via biometric touch or using the app, which can send notifications to the synced device if anyone attempts to move or access the box when it's locked. Read more... More about Ces, Cannabis, Weed, Tech, and Web CultureView the full article
  3. The now infamous Popeyes chicken sandwich was finally restocked on Sunday, so people are back at it trying to get a taste. (I had my first today and it was life-changing.) But if you want to try to make your own version, YouTuber Joshua Weissman has a recipe that he says is even better. Now, the Popeyes chicken sandwich is pretty basic. Stacked between two butter-toasted buns are just three ingredients: sauce, pickles, and their legendary fried chicken. But Weissman brings up some good points in his recreation. The chicken could be a tad crunchier, and the pickle layout is suboptimal. Finally, Weissman's bun simply can't be beat. Read more... More about Youtube, Popeyes, Recreate, Chicken Sandwich, and Joshua WeissmanView the full article
  4. Microsoft Research is a globally distributed playground for people interested in solving fundamental science problems. These projects often focus on machine learning and artificial intelligence, and since Microsoft is on a mission to infuse all of its products with more AI smarts, it’s no surprise that it’s also seeking ways to integrate Microsoft Research’s innovations into the rest of the company. Across the board, the company is trying to find ways to become more innovative, especially around its work in AI, and it’s putting processes in place to do so. Microsoft is unusually open about this process, too, and actually made it somewhat of a focus this week at Ignite, a yearly conference that typically focuses more on technical IT management topics. At Ignite, Microsoft will for the first time present these projects externally at a dedicated keynote. That feels similar to what Google used to do with its ATAP group at its I/O events and is obviously meant to showcase the cutting-edge innovation that happens inside of Microsoft (outside of making Excel smarter). To manage its AI innovation efforts, Microsoft created the Microsoft AI group led by VP Mitra Azizirad, who’s tasked with establishing thought leadership in this space internally and externally, and helping the company itself innovate faster (Microsoft’s AI for Good projects also fall under this group’s purview). I sat down with Azizirad to get a better idea of what her team is doing and how she approaches getting companies to innovate around AI and bring research projects out of the lab. “We began to put together a narrative for the company of what it really means to be in an AI-driven world and what we look at from a differentiated perspective,” Azizirad said. “What we’ve done in this area is something that has resonated and landed well. And now we’re including AI, but we’re expanding beyond it to other paradigm shifts like human-machine interaction, future of computing and digital responsibility, as more than just a set of principles and practices but an area of innovation in and of itself.” Currently, Microsoft is doing a very good job at talking and thinking about horizon one opportunities, as well as horizon three projects that are still years out, she said. “Horizon two, we need to get better at, and that’s what we’re doing.” It’s worth stressing that Microsoft AI, which launched about two years ago, marks the first time there’s a business, marketing and product management team associated with Microsoft Research, so the team does get a lot of insights into upcoming technologies. Just in the last couple of years, Microsoft has published more than 6,000 research papers on AI, some of which clearly have a future in the company’s products. View the full article
  5. Robotic arms can move fast enough to snatch thrown objects right out of the air… but should they? Not unless you want them to unnerve the humans they’re interacting with, according to work out of Disney Research. Roboticists there found that slowing a robot’s reaction time made it feel more normal to people. Disney has, of course, been interested in robotics for decades, and the automatons in its theme parks are among the most famous robots in the world. But there are few opportunities for those robots to interact directly with people. Hence a series of research projects at its research division aimed at safe and non-weird robot-human coexistence. In this case the question was how to make handing over an item to a robot feel natural and non-threatening. Obviously if, when you reached out with a ticket or empty cup, the robot moved like lightning and snapped it out of your hands, that could be seen as potentially dangerous, or at the very least make people nervous. So the robot arm in this case (attached to an anthropomorphic cat torso) moves at a normal human speed. But there’s also the question of when it should reach out. After all, it takes us humans a second to realize that someone is handing something to us, then to reach out and grab it. A computer vision system might be able to track an object and send the hand after it more quickly, but it might feel strange. The researchers set up an experiment where the robot hand reached out to take a ring from a person under three conditions each of speed and delay. When the hand itself moved quickly, people reported less “warmth” and more “discomfort.” The slow speed performed best on those scores. And when the hand moved with no delay, it left people similarly uneasy. But interestingly, too long a delay had a similar effect. Turns out there’s a happy medium that matches what people seem to expect from a hand reaching out to take something from them. Slower movement is better, to a certain point one imagines, and a reasonable but not sluggish delay makes it feel more human. The handover system detailed in a paper published today (and video below) is robust against the usual circumstances: moving targets, unexpected forces and so on. It’ll be a while before an Aristocats bot takes your mug from you at a Disney World cafe, but at least you can be sure it won’t snatch it faster than the eye can follow and scare everyone around you. View the full article
  6. The third session of the International Grand Committee on Disinformation, a multi-nation body comprised of global legislators with concerns about the societal impacts of social media giants, has been taking place in Dublin this week — once again without any senior Facebook management in attendance. The committee was formed last year after Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg repeatedly refused to give evidence to a wide-ranging UK parliamentary enquiry into online disinformation and the use of social media tools for political campaigns. That snub encouraged joint working by international parliamentarians over a shared concern that’s also a cross-border regulatory and accountability challenge. But while Zuckerberg still, seemingly, does not feel personally accountable to international parliaments — even as his latest stand-in at today’s committee hearing, policy chief Monika Bickert, proudly trumpeted the fact that 87 per cent of Facebook’s users are people outside the US — global legislators have been growth hacking a collective understanding of nation-state-scale platforms and the deleterious impacts their data-gobbling algorithmic content hierarchies and microtargeted ads are having on societies and democracies around the world. Incisive questions from the committee today included sceptical scrutiny of Facebook’s claims and aims for a self-styled ‘Content Oversight Board’ it has said will launch next year — with one Irish legislator querying how the mechanism could possibly be independent of Facebook , as well as wondering how a retrospective appeals body could prevent content-driven harms. (On that Facebook seemed to claim that most complaints it gets from users are about content takedowns.) Another question was whether the company’s planned Libra digital currency might not at least partially be an attempt to resolve a reputational risk for Facebook, of accepting political ads in foreign currency, by creating a single global digital currency that scrubs away that layer of auditability. Bickert denied the suggestion, saying the Libra project is unrelated to the disinformation issue and “is about access to financial services”. Twitter’s recently announced total ban on political issue ads also faced some critical questioning by the committee, with the company being asked whether it will be banning environmental groups from running ads about climate change yet continuing to take money from oil giants that wish to run promoted tweets on the topic. Karen White, director of public policy, said they were aware of the concern and are still working through the policy detail for a fuller release due later this month. But it was Facebook that came in for the bulk of criticism during the session, with Bickert fielding the vast majority of legislators’ questions — almost all of which were sceptically framed and some, including from the only US legislator in the room asking questions, outright hostile. Google’s rep, meanwhile, had a very quiet hour and a half, with barely any questions fired his way. While Twitter won itself plenty of praise from legislators and witnesses for taking a proactive stance and banning political microtargeting altogether. The question legislators kept returning to during many of today’s sessions, most of which didn’t involve the reps from the tech giants, is how can governments effectively regulate US-based Internet platforms whose profits are fuelled by the amplification of disinformation as a mechanism for driving engage with their service and ads? Suggestions varied from breaking up tech giants to breaking down business models that were roundly accused of incentivizing the spread of outrageous nonsense for a pure-play profit motive, including by weaponizing people’s data to dart them with ‘relevant’ propaganda. The committee also heard specific calls for European regulators to hurry up and enforce existing data protection law — specifically the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) — as a possible short-cut route to shrinking the harms legislators appeared to agree are linked to platforms’ data-reliant tracking for individual microtargeting. A number of witnesses warned that liberal democracies remain drastically unprepared for the ongoing onslaught of malicious, hypertargeted fakes; that adtech giants’ business models are engineered for outrage and social division as an intentional choice and scheme to monopolize attention; and that even if we’ve now passed “peak vulnerability”, in terms of societal susceptibility to Internet-based disinformation campaigns (purely as a consequence of how many eyes have been opened to the risks since 2016), the activity itself hasn’t yet peaked and huge challenges for democratic nation states remain. The latter point was made by disinformation researcher Ben Nimmo, director of investigations at Graphika. Multiple witnesses called for Facebook to be prohibited from running political advertising as a matter of urgency, with plenty of barbed questions attacking its recent policy decision not to fact-check political ads. Others went further — calling for more fundamental interventions to force reform of its business model and/or divest it of other social platforms it also owns. Given the company’s systematic failure to demonstrate it can be trusted with people’s data that’s enough reason to break it back up into separate social products, runs the argument. Former Blackberry co-CEO, Jim Ballsillie, espoused a view that tech giants’ business models are engineered to profit from manipulation, meaning they inherently pose a threat to liberal democracies. While investor and former Facebook mentor, Roger McNamee, who has written a critical book about the company’s business model, called for personal data to be treated as a human right — so it cannot be stockpiled and turned into an asset to be exploited by behavior-manipulating adtech giants. Also giving evidence today, journalist Carole Cadwalladr, who has been instrumental in investigating the Cambridge Analytica Facebook data misuse scandal, suggested no country should be trusting its election to Facebook. She also decried the fact that the UK is now headed to the polls, for a December general election, with no reforms to its electoral law and with key individuals involved in breaches of electoral law during the 2016 Brexit referendum now in positions of greater power to manipulate democratic outcomes. She too added her voice to calls for Facebook to be prohibited from running political ads. In another compelling testimony, Marc Rotenberg, president and executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center (Epic) in Washington DC, recounted the long and forlorn history of attempts by US privacy advocates to win changes to Facebook’s policies to respect user agency and privacy — initially from the company itself, before petitioning regulators to try to get them to enforce promises Facebook had renaged on, yet still getting exactly nowhere. No more ‘speeding tickets’ “We have spent the last many years trying to get the FTC to act against Facebook and over this period of time the complaints from many other consumer organizations and users have increased,” he told the committee. “Complaints about the use of personal data, complaints about the tracking of people who are not Facebook users. Complaints about the tracking of Facebook users who are no longer on the platform. In fact in a freedom of information request brought by Epic we uncovered 29,000 complaints now pending against the company.” He described the FTC judgement against Facebook, which resulted in a $5BN penalty for the company in June, as both a “historic fine” but also essentially just a “speeding ticket” — because the regulator did not enforce any changes to its business model. So yet another regulatory lapse. “The FTC left in place Facebook’s business practices and left at risk the users of the service,” he warned, adding: “My message to you today is simple: You must act. You cannot wait. You cannot wait ten years or even a year to take action against this company.” He too urged legislators to ban the company from engaging in political advertising — until “adequate legal safeguards are established”. “The terms of the GDPR must be enforced against Facebook and they should be enforced now,” Rotenberg added, calling also for Facebook to be required to divest of WhatsApp — “not because of a great scheme to break up big tech but because the company violated its commitments to protect the data of WhatsApp users as a condition of the acquisition”. In another particularly awkward moment for the social media giant, Keit Pentus-Rosimannus, a legislator from Estonia, asked Bickert directly why Facebook doesn’t stop taking money for political ads. The legislator pointed out that it has already claimed revenue related to such ads is incremental for its business, making the further point that political speech can simply be freely posted to Facebook (as organic content); ergo, Facebook doesn’t need to take money from politicians to run ads that lie — since they can just post their lies freely to Facebook. Bickert had no good answer to this. “We think that there should be ways that politicians can interact with their public and part of that means sharing their views through ads,” was her best shot at a response. “I will say this is an area we’re here today to discuss collaboration, with a thought towards what we should be doing together,” she added. “Election integrity is an area where we have proactively said we want regulation. We think it’s appropriate. Defining political ads and who should run them and who should be able to and when and where. Those are things that we would like to work on regulation with governments.” “Yet Twitter has done it without new regulation. Why can’t you do it?” pressed Pentus-Rosimannus. “We think that it is not appropriate for Facebook to be deciding for the world what is true or false and we think that politicians should have an ability to interact with their audiences. So long as they’re following our ads policies,” Bickert responded. “But again we’re very open to how together we could come up with regulation that could define and tackle these issues.” tl;dr Facebook could be seen once again deploying a policy minion to push for a ‘business as usual’ strategy that functions by seeking to fog the issues and re-frame the notion of regulation as a set of self-serving (and very low friction) ‘guide-rails’, rather than as major business model surgery. Bickert was doing this even as the committee was hearing from multiple voices making the equal and opposite point with acute force. Another of those critical voices was congressman David Cicilline — a US legislator making his first appearance at the Grand Committee. He closely questioned Bickert on how a Facebook user seeing a political ad that contains false information would know they are being targeted by false information, rejecting repeated attempts to misleading reframe his question as just about general targeting data. “Again, with respect to the veracity, they wouldn’t know they’re being targeted with false information; they would know why they’re being targeted as to the demographics… but not as to the veracity or the falseness of the statement,” he pointed out. Bickert responded by claiming that political speech is “so heavily scrutinized there is a high likelihood that somebody would know if information is false” — which earned her a withering rebuke. “Mark Zuckerberg’s theory that sunlight is the best disinfectant only works if an advertisment is actually exposed to sunlight. But as hundreds of Facebook employees made clear in an open letter last week Facebook’s advanced targeting and behavioral tracking tools — and I quote — “hard for people in the electorate to participate in the public scrutiny that we’re saying comes along with political speech” — end quote — as they know — and I quote — “these ads are often so microtargeted that the conversations on Facebook’s platforms are much more siloed than on the other platforms,” said Cicilline. “So, Ms Bickert, it seems clear that microtargeting prevents the very public scrutiny that would serve as an effective check on false advertisements. And doesn’t the entire justification for this policy completely fall apart given that Facebook allows politicians both to run fake ads and to distribute those fake ads only to the people most vulnerable to believe in them? So this is a good theory about sunlight but in fact in practice you policies permit someone to make false representations and to microtarget who gets them — and so this big public scrutiny that serves as a justification just doesn’t exist.” Facebook’s head of global policy management responded by claiming there’s “great transparency” around political ads on its platform — as a result of what she dubbed its “unprecedented” political ad library. “You can look up any ad in this library and see what is the breakdown on the audience who has seen this ad,” she said, further claiming that “many [political ads] are not microtargeted at all”. “Isn’t the problem here that Facebook has too much power — and shouldn’t we be thinking about breaking up that power rather than allowing Facebook’s decisions to continue to have such enormous consequences for our democracy?” rejoined Cicilline, not waiting for an answer and instead laying down a critical statement. “The cruel irony is that your company is invoking the protections of free speech as a cloak to defend your conduct which is in fact undermining and threatening the very institutions of democracy it’s cloaking itself in.” The session was long on questions for Facebook and short on answers with anything other than the most self-serving substance from Facebook. Major GDPR enforcements coming in 2020 During a later session without any of the tech giants present which was intended for legislators to query the state of play of regulation around online platforms, Ireland’s data protection commissioner, Helen Dixon, signalled that no major enforcements will be coming against Facebook et al this year — saying instead that decisions on a number of cross-border cases will be coming in 2020. Ireland has a plate stacked high with complaints against tech giants since the GDPR came into force in May 2018. Among the 21 “large scale” investigations into big tech companies that remain ongoing are probes around transparency and the lawfulness of data processing by social media platform giants. The adtech industry’s use of personal data in the real-time bidding programmatic process is also under the regulatory microscope. Dixon and the Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) take center stage as a regulator for US tech giants given how many of these companies have chosen to site their international headquarters in Ireland — encouraged by business friendly corporate tax rates. But the DPC has a pivotal role on account of a one-stop-shop mechanism within GDPR that allows for a data protection agency with primary jurisdiction over a data controller to take a lead on cross-border data processing cases, with other EU member states’ data watchdogs feeding but not leading such a complaint. Some of the Irish DPC’s probes have already lasted as long as the 18 months since GDPR came into force across the bloc. Dixon argued today that this is still a reasonable timeframe for enforcing an updated data protection regime, despite signalling further delay before any enforcements in these major cases. “It’s a mistake to say there’s been no enforcement… but there hasn’t been an outcome yet to the large scale investigations we have open, underway into the big tech platforms around lawfulness, transparency, privacy by design and default and so on. Eighteen months is not a long time. Not all of the investigations have been open for 18 months,” she said. “We must follow due process or we won’t secure the outcome in the end. These companies they’ve market power but they also have the resources to litigate forever. And so we have to ensure we follow due process, we allow them a right to be heard, we conclude the legal analysis carefully by applying what our principles in the GDPR to the scenarios at issue and then we can hope to deliver the outcomes that the GDPR promises. “So that work is underway. We couldn’t be working more diligently at it. And we will have the first sets of decisions that will start rolling out in the very near term.” Asked by the committee about the level of cooperation the DPC is getting from the tech giants under investigation she said they are “engaging and cooperating” — but also that they’re “challenging at every turn”. She also expressed a view that it’s not yet clear whether GDPR enforcement will be able to have a near-term impact on reining in any behaviors found to be infringing the law, given further potential legal push back from platforms after decisions are issued. “The regulated entities are obliged under the GDPR to cooperate with investigations conducted by the data protection authority, and to date of the 21 large-scale investigations were have opened into big tech organizations they are engaging and cooperating. With equal measure they’re challenging at every turn as well and seeking constant clarifications around due process but they are cooperating and engaging,” she told the committee. “What remains to be seen is how the investigations we currently have open will conclude. And whether there will ultimately be compliance with the outcomes of those investigations or whether they will be subject to lengthy challenge and so on. So I think the big question of whether we’re going to be able to near-term drive the kind of outcomes we want is still an open question. And it awaiting us as a data protection authority to put down the first final decisions in a number of cases.” She also expressed doubt about whether the GDPR data protection framework will, ultimately, sum to a tool that can regulate underlying business models that are based on collecting data for the purpose of behavioral advertising. “The GDPR isn’t set up to tackle business models, per se,” she said. “It’s set up to apply principles to data processing operations. And so there’s a complexity when we come to look at something like adtech or online behavioral advertising in that we have to target multiple actors. “For that reason we’re looking at publishers at the front end, that start the data collection from users — it’s when we first click on a website that the tracking technologies, the pixels, the cookies, the social plug-ins — start the data collection that ultimately ends up categorizing us for the purposes of sponsored stories or ad serving. So we’re looking at that ad exchanges, we’re looking at the real-time bidding system. We’re looking at the front end publishers. And we’re looking at the ad brokers who play an important part in all of this in combining online and offline sources of data. So we’ll apply the principles against those data processing operations, we’ll apply them rigorously. We’ll conclude and then we’ll have to see does that add up to a changing of the underlying business model? And I think the jury is out on that until we conclude.” Epic’s Rotenberg argued to the contrary on this when asked by the committee for the most appropriate model to use for regulating data-driven platforms — saying that “all roads lead to the GDPR”. “It’s a set of rights and responsibilities associated with the collection and use of personal data and when companies choose to collect personal data they should be held to account,” he said, suggesting an interpretation of the law that does not require other European data protection agencies to wait for Ireland’s decision on key cross-border cases. “The Schrems decision of 2015 makes clear that while co-ordinated enforcement anticipated under the GDPR is important, individual DPAs have their own authority to enforce the provisions of the charter — which means that individual DPAs do not need to wait for a coordinated response to bring an enforcement action.” A case remains pending before Europe’s top court that looks set to lay down a firm rule on exactly that point. “As a matter of law the GDPR contains the authority within its text to enforce the other laws of the European Union — this is largely about the misuse and the collection and use of personal data for microtargeting,” Rotenberg also argued. “That problem can be addressed through the GDPR but it’s going to take an urgent response. Not a long term game plan.” When GDPR enforcement decisions do come Dixon suggested they could have a wider impact than only applying to the direct subject, saying there’s an appetite from data processors generally for more guidance on compliance with the law — meaning that both the clarity and deterrence factor derived from large scale platform enforcement decisions could help steer the industry down a reforming path. Though, again, what exactly those platform enforcements may be remains pending until 2020. “Probably the first large-scale investigation we’re going to conclude under GDPR is one into the principle of transparency and involving one of the larger platforms,” Dixon also told the committee, responding to a legislator’s question asking if she believes consumers are clear about exactly what they’re giving up when they agree to their information being processed to access a digital service. “We will shortly be making a decision spelling out in detail how compliance with the transparency obligations under Articles 12 to 14 of the GDPR should look in that context. But it is very clear that users are typically unaware. For example some of the large platforms do have capabilities for users to completely opt out of personalized ad serving but most users aren’t aware of it. There are also patterns in operation that nudge users in certain directions. So one of the things that [we’re doing] — aside from the hard enforcement cases that we’re going to take — we’ve also published guidance recently for example on that issue of how users are being nudged to make choices that are perhaps more privacy invasive than they might otherwise if they had an awareness. “So I think there’s a role for us as a regulatory authority, as well as regulating the platforms to also drive awareness amongst users. But it’s an uphill battle, given the scale of what users are facing.” Asked by the committee about the effectiveness of financial penalties as a tool for platform regulation, Dixon pointed to research that suggests fines alone make no difference — but she highlighted the fact that GDPR affords Europe’s regulators with a far more potent power in their toolbox: The power to order changes to data processing or even ban it altogether. “It’s our view that we will be obliged to impose fines where we find infringements and so that’s what will happen but we expect that it’s the corrective powers that we apply — the bans on processing, the requirements to bring processing operations into compliance that’s going to have the more significant effects,” she said, suggesting that under her watch the DPC will not shy away from using corrective powers if or when an infringement demands it. The case for special measures Also speaking today in a different public forum, Europe’s competition chief, Margrethe Vestager, made a similar point to Dixon’s about the uphill challenge for EU citizens to enforce their rights. “We have you could call it digital citizens’ rights — the GDPR — but that doesn’t solve the question of how much data can be collected about you,” she said during an on stage interview at the Web Summit conference in Lisbon, where she was asked whether platforms should have a fiduciary duty towards users to ensure they are accountable for what they’re distributing. The antitrust commissioner is set for an expanded digital strategy role in the incoming European Commission. “We also need better protection and better tools to protect ourselves from leaving a trace everywhere we go,” she suggested. “Maybe we would like to be more able to choose what kind of trace we would leave behind. And that side of the equation will have to be part of the discussion as well. How can we be better protected from leaving that trace of data that allows companies to know so much more about any one of us than we might even realize ourselves?” “I myself am very happy that I have digital rights. My problem is that I find it very difficult to enforce them,” Vestager added. “The only real result of me reading terms and conditions is that I get myself distracted from wanting to read the article that wanted me to tap T&Cs. So we need that to be understandable so that we know what we’re dealing with. And we need software and services that will enable us not to leave the same kind of trace as we would otherwise do… I really hope that the market will also help us here. Because it’s not just for politicians to deal with this — it is also in an interaction with the market that we can find solutions. Because one of the main challenges in dealing with AI is of course that there is a risk that we will regulate for yesterday. And then it’s worth nothing.” Asked at what point she would herself advocate for big tech companies to be broken up, Vestager said there would need to be a competition case that involves damage that’s extreme enough to justify it. “We don’t have that kind of case right now,” she argued. “I will never exclude that that could happen but so far we don’t have a problem that big that breaking up a company would be the solution.” She also warned against the risk of potentially creating more problems by framing the problem of platform giants as a size issue — and therefore the solution as breaking the giants up. “The people advocating it don’t have a model as to have to do this. And if you know this story about an antique creature when you chopped out one head two or seven came up — so there is a risk you do not solve the problem you just have many more problems,” she said. “And you don’t have a way of at least trying to control it. So I am much more in the line of thinking that you should say that when you become that big you get a special responsibility — because you are de facto the rule setter in the market that you own. And we could be much more precise about what that then entails. Because otherwise there’s a risk that the many, many interesting companies they have no chance of competing.” View the full article
  7. The uncanny quality of a good deepfake can have a spine-shivering effect on viewers, and that couldn't be more true here. Ctrl Shift Face, a YouTube channel that's terrifyingly good at producing deepfakes, has posted a trio of videos using the "coin toss" scene from No Country for Old Men. Except instead instead of Javier Bardem, who stars in the original scene, we get Leonardo DiCaprio, Willem Dafoe, and Arnold Schwarzenegger in three separate videos. Leonardo DiCaprio If having the actors' faces overlaid onto Bardem's wasn't creepily accurate enough, the voices (courtesy of voice actors) are dubbed over the dialogue, as well. And it's a lot to process. Read more... More about Leonardo Dicaprio, Arnold Schwarzenegger, No Country For Old Men, Willem Dafoe, and Deepfakes View the full article
  8. Veritas Genetics, a DNA testing startup, has said a data breach resulted in the theft of some customer information. The Danvers, Mass.-based company said its customer-facing portal had “recently” been breached but did not say when. Although the portal did not contain test results or medical information, the company declined to say what information had been stolen — only that a handful of customers were affected. The company has not issued a public statement, nor has it acknowledge the breach on its website. A spokesperson for Veritas did not respond to a request for comment. Bloomberg first reported the news. Veritas, whose competitors include 23andMe, Ancestry and MyHeritage, says it can analyze and understand a human genome using a smaller portion of an individual’s DNA, allowing customers to better understand what health risks they may face in later life or pass on to their children. Although the stolen data did not include personal health information, it’s likely to further fuel concerns that health startups, particularly companies dealing with sensitive DNA and genome information, can’t protect their users’ data. Privacy remains an emerging concern in genetics testing after law enforcement have served legal demands against DNA collection and genetics testing companies to help identify suspects in criminal cases. Just this week, it was reported that a “game changer” warrant obtained in Florida allowed one police department to search the full database of GEDmatch, a DNA testing company, which last year was used by police to help catch the notorious Golden State Killer. Some 26 million consumers have used an at-home genetics testing kit. View the full article
  9. White Claw season is over… bring on the Four Loko. Two months ago, the popular alcohol brand announced their intent to break into the hard seltzer market, offering a 14% ABV variety, the highest of any hard seltzer brand on the market right now. (Current promotional materials show a Black Cherry flavor with 12% ABV, still the highest. It’s unclear if the original Sour Blue Razz will still have 14%, or will be available at all.) Originally thought to be hitting markets Q1 2020, they apparently became tired of waiting and released the beverage to retailers nationwide yesterday. “When we first posted about it on Four Loko’s social channels, we had no idea the response would be as massive as it was,” Phusion Project co-CEO Jaisen Freeman said in a press release. You can find where Four Loko is sold via the brand’s locator on their website here. A word of warning to those aiming to drinking these this weekend: White Claw has an ABV of 5%. Four Loko Hard Seltzers are considerably stronger. Please exercise caution and drink responsibly. Have a designated driver or use Uber/Lyft. This article was first published on Your EDM. Source: Four Loko Hard Seltzer Officially Hits Retailers View the full article
  10. Two years after Hurricane Maria devastated large swaths of Puerto Rico, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Google Arts & Culture have teamed up to share some of the island's art with the rest of the world. They're joining forces to promote a new project allowing anyone around the world to zoom into 48 digitized pieces of art from Puerto Rican artists. The preservation effort is made possible with Google Arts & Culture's "Art Camera" technology, which allows for a close-up, digital examination of paintings. The artwork for this collection comes from Puerto Rican art institutions, including Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña (ICP), Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico, Museo de Arte de Ponce, and Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Puerto Rico. People can also visit the museums in person to view curated exhibits and learn more about the collections on display in the digital project. Read more... More about Google, Lin Manuel Miranda, Puerto Rico, Hurricane Maria, and Hurricane Maria AidView the full article
  11. Weekend of free programming at Los Angeles’ Getty Center Museum begins November 16 View the full article
  12. From its relatively basic and humble roots back in the 1990s, Internet-based distribution of copyright-infringing content underwent a renaissance at the turn of the century. Peer-to-peer technologies, including the now omnipresent BitTorrent protocol, brought file-sharing to the masses and with it a huge problem for the content industries. Twenty years on – a lifetime in technology – BitTorrent still attracts hundreds of millions of users but the immediacy of streaming, including movies, TV series, live TV and sports, is now considered one of the greatest threats facing copyright holders and distribution platforms. This week, in remarks made at the Thirteenth Law Enforcement and Industry Meeting on Intellectual Property Enforcement in Washington, DC, the Department of Justice weighed in on these dramatic changes in the piracy landscape over the past decade. “Copyright pirates have moved from peddling individual copies of movies, music, and software on street corners or offering individual downloads online, to operating technologically advanced, multi-national streaming services that generate millions of dollars in illicit profits,” said Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski. While online streaming of pirated content is nothing new, in more recent years there has been a noticeable shift in the professionalism of those providing and distributing content, with highly organized unlicensed IPTV providers and ‘pirate’ CDN operations presenting new challenges to entertainment companies and law enforcement alike. Piracy-enabled set-top boxes, which in many cases draw their content from the type of services referenced by Benczkowski, remain high on the agenda. The Assistant Attorney General also referenced the recent charges against eight Las Vegas residents who allegedly ran two of the largest platforms in the country. “One of the services – known as Jetflicks – allegedly obtained infringing television programs by using sophisticated computer scripts to scour pirate websites around the world and collect the television shows,” Benczkowski said. “It then made the programming available for paying Jetflicks subscribers to stream and download, often just one day after the original episodes aired. The scheme, as charged, resulted in the loss of millions of dollars by television program and motion picture copyright owners.” This leveraging of technology to provide content quickly and at scale is a concern for the USDOJ, which indicates it will continue to pursue “high-impact cases” to deter IP crime. However, Benczkowski noted that changes to the law or creative legal strategies may be required to reel in the more elusive offenders. “Existing laws do not always address the conduct that IP criminals are engaging in today. Or, put differently, smart criminals may seek to avoid serious repercussions by developing new technologies or security measures to skirt legal authorities,” he said. “We need to be creative and cooperative in thinking about possible solutions, whether through looking at additional charging strategies, or considering legislative amendments.” What those strategies might be is open to question but Benczkowski believes law enforcement will “never” be in a position to solve the IP crime problem through prosecution alone. Nevertheless, through cooperation and the enhancement of relationships with overseas law enforcement entities to target the “worst actors”, he believes that it’s possible to significantly reduce the profits available to those engaged in criminal copyright infringement. Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and more. We also have VPN reviews, discounts, offers and coupons. View the full article
  13. Nik Milanovic Contributor Share on Twitter Nik Milanovic is a fintech and financial inclusion enthusiast, with a decade of work across mobile payments, online lending, credit and microfinance. More posts by this contributor What money should be The Third Age of credit It would be an understatement to say the last few months have been rocky for Libra, Facebook’s proposed stablecoin. Since its announcement in June, eBay, Mastercard and other members of the cryptocurrency’s elite consortium have jumped ship (many due to direct pressure from legislators), a congressional hearing on Libra turned into an evisceration of Facebook’s data and privacy practices, Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard assailed the project’s lack of controls and the Chinese government announced its own competitive digital currency. Critics, though well-intentioned, are missing the forest for the trees. In spite of Libra’s well-cataloged risks and unanswered questions, there is a massive opportunity in plain sight for the global financial system; it would be a tragedy to let that opportunity be destroyed on the basis of Facebook’s reputation or Libra’s haphazard go-to-market. Governments should heed the lesson of the U.S.-Soviet space race of the 1970s and use the idea behind Libra, if not the project itself, in “coopetition” to build a better, more inclusive global financial architecture. A few key points to begin: first, Facebook is probably not the right actor to spearhead this initiative. Mark Zuckerberg promises that Facebook will only be one board member in a governing consortium and that the project will comply with U.S. regulatory demands and privacy standards. But just as the company reneged on its promise not to integrate the encrypted WhatsApp into Facebook’s platform, it’s easy to picture Facebook pushing through standards that benefit itself at consumer expense. While Facebook would be a great platform to distribute Libra, its track record should make constituents uneasy about giving it any control. Second, global payment systems are outdated and slow, and many businesses have been set up to extract rents from that fact. This burden disproportionately falls on the shoulders of poor consumers. People living paycheck-to-paycheck are forced into high-interest loans to smooth their cash flow due to slow settlement speeds. Immigrants sending money home pay up to 17 percent to move money across borders, costs that take a sizable bite out of some countries’ GDPs. In a ubiquitous currency regime, however, foreign exchange fees would vanish entirely . View the full article
  14. The countdown to Black Friday (and Thanksgiving, we guess) is on. We're only three weeks out, so it's time to get your Black Friday game plan together. While you're prepping, check out what we know so far about sales at Amazon, Target, Best Buy, Apple, eBay, and Dell. If you don't want to wait the three weeks until Black Friday to do your shopping, we feel you. And we're happy to share that Walmart has some pretty kick-ass deals going on right now. You might have some uncertainties about whether you should buy an item now or wait for it to go on sale for Black Friday. If that's you, check out our guides on what you should wait for and what you should just buy now. Read more... More about Apple, Walmart, Bose, Black Friday, and Mashable Shopping View the full article
  15. Days after the release of a study showing that teens prefer mint-flavored vapes, Juul made a decision that's sure to have people of all ages hoarding their pods. As of Thursday, Juul will immediately stop selling mint Juul pods through its website and fulfilling mint Juul pod orders from retailers. The company's announcement attributes the decision to the Monitoring the Future study, as well as the FDA's Youth Tobacco Survey that was released earlier in October. The latter study found that flavors such as mint were contributing to the prominence of youth vaping; the MTF study found that mint was the favorite Juul pod flavor of 12th and 10th graders, the second favorite flavor among 8th graders, and the flavor favored overall by "heavy Juulers" (teens who vaped 20 days or more in the last month). Read more... More about Vaping, Juul, Juul Pods, Tech, and HealthView the full article
×
×
  • Create New...