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Technologr http://technologr.com Technology news for you Fri, 20 Apr 2018 13:29:57 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.5 http://technologr.com/news/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/cropped-icon-32x32.jpg Technologr http://technologr.com 32 32 Snapchat Lens new feature released for advertiser marketing http://technologr.com/?p=132913 http://technologr.com/?p=132913#respond Fri, 20 Apr 2018 13:29:57 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132913 Snapchat launches its new Shoppable AR feature, which will optimize advertisement displays and product marketing through the app’s Lenses, according to TechCrunch. The new feature is developed and integrated with branded filters on it Lens platform.

Advertisers will now have the opportunity to add a button to a Lens that takes users to a website in which they can buy an associated product. Based on a newly released TechCrunch report, the feature begins with few simple partnerships, including Clairol, which is selling a “beauty product trial” through Snapchat, and one with Adidas, which is selling its pair of Deerupt running shoes.

Hawk games and movies will have opportunities to participate in this feature. Mobile app developer King has a special Candy Crush Saga filter that acts as an AR game in which users can play from within the Snapchat app, and media production company STX Entertainment is using the app to promote Amy Schumer’s new movie ‘I Feel Pretty’ with a link to the trailer.

The new brand-responsive Lens feature builds on Snapchat’s introduction of Lens Studio, which will allow creators to design and release the app’s signature AR filters using a collection of included effects, tools, and objects.

According to Snap Inc., a Snapchat parent company, Lenses are used by more than 70 million users per day.

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Facebook develops a team to design its own chip http://technologr.com/?p=132909 http://technologr.com/?p=132909#respond Fri, 20 Apr 2018 13:22:49 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132909 Facebook plans to develop its own silicon to power devices and servers, based on a new report released by Bloomberg. Current hiring strategies reveal preparations to appoint a manager proficient with assembling an “End-to-end SoC/ ASIC, firmware, and driver development organization.”

The social media networking company intends to become less dependent on outside companies, making it the latest tech enterprise to begin a goal of self-reliance involving specific products.

Apple has self-branded chips inside it iOS devices and is reportedly planning to replace the Intel processors in Mac computers with its own product. Google produces custom AI chips and integrates its first consumer-focused silicon in the Pixel 2 as an image processor. Additionally, Amazon is poised to develop chips to improve Alexa’s AI smarts, as reported by The Information.

Currently, servers, which train Facebook’s AI systems, are Nvidia-powered. CEO Mark Zuckerberg explained that AI will eventually play a more intricate role in identifying inappropriate content across the social network than present processes in place.

With independent chip technology, Facebook produces the capability to power smart speakers and future Oculus virtual reality headsets, enabling the company to make improvements and progressions that are only possible when hardware and software are integrated throughout the full-cycle of the development process.

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Under Armour pulls ads from YouTube over extremist content http://technologr.com/?p=132906 http://technologr.com/?p=132906#respond Fri, 20 Apr 2018 13:21:00 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132906 Under Armour Inc. has pulled all its advertising from YouTube after appearing on an extremist channel, according to a report by Market Watch. The ads ran on a white nationalist channel of the Alphabet Inc. owned YouTube.

The apparel company is one of several companies up in arms after their ads appeared on channels that promoted extremist content. Brands such as Netflix, Facebook, and Amazon were some affected by the controversial content.

While this is not the first time that YouTube has come under fire for running advertising on extremist channels, however, it is the first time that a brand has pulled its ads and affected YouTube’s bottom line. In the past, companies affected paused their ads temporarily on YouTube. But, the companies later resumed their promotions on the site.

YouTube has announced changes to alleviate the issue such as restricting which channels run advertising and produce revenue on their channels.

Virtually anyone can open a YouTube account and create videos on a channel on the site. YouTube does decide which channels and what content advertising appears on. Channels with 1000 subscribers and 4000 hours of viewing over more over a 12-month period can receive revenue from advertising on their channel.

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Ikea-owned app TaskRabbit goes offline due to security breach http://technologr.com/?p=132903 http://technologr.com/?p=132903#respond Thu, 19 Apr 2018 14:40:21 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132903 Ikea’s freelance labor-service app TaskRabbit confirms a major security breach, in which users reported suspicious “phishing” emails purportedly sent from the company.

The online and mobile marketplace positions freelance handymen into available household service tasks created by consumers. The service operates in 41 cities across the United Kingdom and the United States, managing 1.25 million users and more than 50,000 freelancers, according to CNet reports.

TaskRabbit delivered a message to users, explaining an ongoing investigation has been prepared while working with law enforcement and a cybersecurity firm, BBC. The app advised users to change their passwords for TaskRabbit, in addition to other apps and websites.

“We understand how important our clients’ and Taskers’ personal information is,” TaskRabbit tweeted on Monday. “We will be back in contact with you with more information once we have it.”

The United Kingdom’s information commissioner’s office has released a statement, clarifying its “awareness of a potential data breach” and commits towards examining the situation. In addition, Gizmodo reports no known compromises with user payment or personal information.

The security breach comes as other major companies have announced data breaches this month, including Delta Air Lines, Panera Bread, Sears, and Saks. The app and its website remain temporarily closed until further notice.

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Chevrolet and Shell collaborate towards in-dash fuel payment http://technologr.com/?p=132900 http://technologr.com/?p=132900#respond Thu, 19 Apr 2018 14:38:36 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132900 Chevrolet and Shell have partnered to launch a new feature, enabling drivers to purchase gasoline through the infotainment screen. The new feature exists alongside General Motors’ new Marketplace service in which drivers can pre-purchase beverages or make restaurant reservations inside the vehicle.

General Motors explains the emerging efficiency for Chevrolet owners to select the fuel payment icon on their dash screen and begin fueling at any Shell station, with several steps as demonstrated by the company’s senior manager of online commerce Rick Ruskin.

Through a Chevrolet demonstration video, Ruskin illustrates the method of keying in the pump number of which the vehicle is parked, selecting a method of payments, and inputting a PIN number sent to them by Shell once registered with the gas company’s “Pay and Save” program. Once the vehicle owner authorizes the payment, an authorization code is displayed for input at the pump in which the driver can exit the vehicle, enter the code, and begin fueling.

This in-vehicle gas-purchasing feature is specific to 2017 and 2018 Chevrolet vehicles for Shell stations in Detroit, Houston, and Seattle. According to the Chevrolet press release, a nationwide launch will commence this summer, with availability at over 14,000 Shell stations within the country.

The automaker confirms that the in-dash payment system is “embedded”, whereas there is no requirement for smartphone or tethering use. The company anticipates additional shopping features and branded advertising on the screens in the near future.

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A new form of math may develop conscious AI http://technologr.com/?p=132897 http://technologr.com/?p=132897#respond Thu, 19 Apr 2018 14:36:57 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132897 Daniel J. Buehrer, a scientist and retired professor from the National Chung Cheng University, recently published a white paper that proposes a new class of math capable of creating conscious machines, writes Tristan Greene for The Next Web. In the paper, Buehrer discusses how a new class of calculus could develop an “all-learning” algorithm.

The math is “expressive enough to describe and improve its own learning process,” Buehrer explains. Creating a self-teaching class of calculus that learns from—and controls—any number of connected AI agents would theoretically grow exponentially more intelligent every time it updates any of the various learning systems it controls, writes Greene. “If the class calculus theory is correct, that human and machine intelligence involve the same algorithm, then it is only less than a year for the theory to be testable in the OpenAI gym,” Buehrer tells The Next Web. Consequently, this control and update system will provide a feedback loop, which according to Buehrer, would allow machine consciousness to emerge.

“Allowing machines to modify their own model of the world and themselves may create ‘conscious’ machines, where the measure of consciousness may be taken to be the number of uses of feedback loops between a class calculus’s model of the world and the results of what its robots actually caused to happen in the world,” Buehrer hypothesizes.

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Retail rivals Amazon and Best Buy partner to market smart TVs http://technologr.com/?p=132894 http://technologr.com/?p=132894#respond Wed, 18 Apr 2018 19:52:59 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132894 CEOs Jeff Bezos of Amazon and Hubert Joly of  Best Buy unveiled the official collaboration efforts to market smart TVs powered by Amazon’s Fire TV operating system.

The competitive retailers have partnered towards a project to sell 11 models of smart TVs, commencing this summer. Toshiba as well as Best Buy’s Insignia brand will provide the actual hardware. Each model will be available through Amazon.com in addition to Best Buy stores and website.

At the Bellevue, Washington Best Buy store, Bezos announced that the two retail rivals “trust each other, which makes a deeply integrated partnership possible.” In the past, Amazon and Best Buy have worked together in some capacity for numerous years.

Within this strategic agreement, Best Buy will have access to Amazon’s expansive online customer base, according to the Wall Street Journal. “What’s new in this partnership is the depths of the physical integration between the software and the hardware,” Joly states. “The two companies are retailers but they’re also product companies.”

Consumers will be presented with smart TVs with deep Alexa integrations, equipped with a voice-capable remote with control options through the Echo device. Without a definitive price range for the new productions, Amazon previous sales analytics suggest a higher estimate cost than the Fire TVs that the company made in partnership with Element in 2017.

“Amazon and Best Buy have a long history of working together, and today we take our partnership to a new level,” noted Bezos in a press release. “These Fire Edition smart TVs by Insignia and Toshiba deliver beautiful visuals and all the movies and TV shows you love, with an experience that gets better every day with Alexa.”

Fire TV Edition Toshiba smart TV will be the first release by the duo, available at Best Buy this summer. Further models will proceed within the United States, expanding to Canada in late 2018.

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Huawei and ZTE are sources of concern for U.S. officials http://technologr.com/?p=132891 http://technologr.com/?p=132891#respond Wed, 18 Apr 2018 19:51:31 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132891 United States law regulators repositioned towards a restriction on China equipment makers as security hazards, supporting a prohibition on federal subsidies to buy networking gear from manufacturers such as Huawei and ZTE Corp.

On Tuesday, the Federal Communications Commission voted 5-0 in favor of barring federal funds from being spent with companies determined to be a risk to United States national security. The ban will be finalized when a second vote by the FCC is completed, with a noted congressional investigation of Huawei and ZTE as possible security threats.

“For years, U.S. government officials have expressed concern about the national security threats posed by certain foreign communications equipment providers in the communications supply chain,” FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said. “Hidden ‘backdoors’ to our networks in routers, switches, and other network equipment can allow hostile foreign powers to inject viruses and other malware, steal Americans’ private data, spy on U.S. businesses, and more.”

The initiatives come as trade tensions grow between the United States and China. President Trump has threatened tariffs on $150 billion in Chinese imports in retribution for violations of intellectual property rights, while Beijing has promised to retaliate. On Monday, the Commerce Department blocked ZTE from exporting sensitive technology from America, claiming the company made false statements to officials of the United States.
Numerous carriers that service remote areas rely on companies like Huawei and ZTE, and could suffer “significant economic hardship” from the FCC’s proposal, Steve Berry, president of CCA, a trade group for smaller wireless providers, said in an emailed statement.

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Windows 10 Spring Creators Update postponed http://technologr.com/?p=132888 http://technologr.com/?p=132888#respond Wed, 18 Apr 2018 19:49:41 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132888 Microsoft’s Redstone 4 Windows 10 update was primed for an official release last week. The company targeted April 10th as an internal goal to launch the update, however, a concluding “clocking bug” postponed the release. In an uncommon modification, Microsoft has now issued a new development as a replacement for fixing the bug with a cumulative update through Windows Update.

“In certain cases, these reliability issues could have led to a higher percentage of (BSOD) on PCs for example,” explained Dona Sakar of Microsoft. “Instead of creating a Cumulative Update package to service these issues, we decided to create a new build with the fixes included.” The software company has not revealed the exact reason for the blocking bug, or why it was discovered in the final moments of pre-launch.

The new build is available to Windows Insiders in the Fast Ring and will be made available to Slow Ring and Release Preview in the coming quarter. A source familiar with Microsoft’s plan disclosed to The Verge that this version 17134 build has now been marked as the final version of the next major Windows 10 update.

Although the company has used the Spring Creators Update naming approach numerous times, Microsoft remains without an official name for the coming update.

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Facebook reveals new global privacy controls http://technologr.com/?p=132885 http://technologr.com/?p=132885#respond Wed, 18 Apr 2018 19:38:17 +0000 http://technologr.com/?p=132885 Facebook has announced new privacy controls targeted in the direction of all users as a part of compliance with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), effective May 25th. Facebook will request each user, regardless of location, to review privacy choices, from the information added to their profile to the method in which Facebook uses their data to target ads.

Additionally, with the new privacy controls, the company introduced the return of facial recognition to Europe and Canada after courts ruled the photo-tagging system collected biometric data without proper user consent seven years ago.

The new privacy control will be released to European users this week, with a later global expansion, according to the Facebook blog post.

The social networking service will ask users whether or not they want to continue sharing religious, political, and relationship status information in their profile. Under GDPR rules, companies are subject to penalties for using or collecting personal information without user’s consent.

Within the new privacy control, users will be asked to review and choose whether they agree with data use collection to display relevant ads. Facebook deputy chief privacy officer Rob Sherman stated, “Facebook is an advertising-supported service. All ads on Facebook are targeted to come extent, and that’s true for offline advertising, as well.”

This week, United States federal judges ruled that Facebook must confront a class action lawsuit over its Tag Suggestions feature. The feature uses a facial recognition tool that allegedly violates Illinois law by storing biometric data without the consent of the user upon initial release.

Users in the EU and Canada will be provided the opportunity to opt-in to Facebook’s facial recognition products. While the facial recognition products have been controversial, the company emphasizes the selection is completely optional.

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