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Communication and Technology news
How a group of students discovered the sounds of solar storms

We are now truly living in the era of big data. And it’s not just companies like Facebook and YouTube that are reaping the benefits, big data is transforming science too. In the space sciences, we have an unprecedented number of satellites and ground-based instruments that monitor Earth’s space environment –...

2018-12-30
Why designers shouldn’t bother learning to code

Every couple of weeks we see a new article come up that tries to answer the good old question: should designers learn to code? Our industry is finally reaching a point where we are able to step back and reframe that question altogether. There are two fundamental arguments used by those who defend the fact that...

2018-12-30
Tech stocks are overvalued and it’s killing innovation

We’re entering an unprecedented era of advanced technology and behemoth tech companies driving its development. Earlier this year, Apple became the first company to reach a one-trillion-dollar valuation, and Amazon followed suit, reaching a one-trillion-dollar market cap in September. Alphabet (Google’s parent...

2018-12-29
3 surprising ways social ‘neighborhood’ apps could boost your business

Have you ever logged onto Facebook, only to be inundated with mundane status updates from your ex-high school classmate or photos of your great-aunt’s cat? The impersonal, irrelevant news that seems to clog up most our newsfeeds is turning people away from traditional social networks and toward a new breed of local...

2018-12-29
The fascinating evolution of the Bitcoin giveaway scam on Twitter

2018 saw a new scam epidemic that gradually took over Twitter – and eventually the entire cryptocurrency and blockchain space: the Bitcoin giveaway scheme. It all started in January, at the height of the cryptocurrency mania. Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin took to Twitter to warn users that cunning individuals...

2018-12-29
Facebook pays $238k to settle lawsuit and will halt political ads in Washington State

Facebook and Google paid up after being accused of breaking state campaign finance violations, in what may be the first such challenge to either platform. Facebook will stop displaying political campaign ads in Washington State in order to comply with campaign finance laws, and will pay more than $238,500...

2018-12-28
The 15 coolest interfaces of the year

Prepare your “mind blown” emojis. It was the year when self-driving cars got boring. When iPhones became confusing. When the army spent $480 million on Microsoft Hololens headsets. When we finally got to see the long-awaited Magic Leap…and it was a dud. When virtual reality headsets like...

2018-12-28
No, Instagram is not switching to a horizontal feed

The photo-sharing giant was testing a tap-to-advance replacement for the scrolling feed, but it was mistakenly rolled out widely, creating a bit of a holiday week panic. This morning, Instagram appeared to be rolling out–or at least testing–a new feed that could have you tapping and swiping rather than...

2018-12-27
LinkedIn cofounder Reid Hoffman addresses disinformation scandal in Alabama race

“I categorically disavow the use of misinformation to sway an election,” writes Hoffman in a Medium post. Internet billionaire Reid Hoffman wants to set the record straight. On Wednesday, the cofounder of LinkedIn issued an apology related to reports of his involvement in widespread disinformation during...

2018-12-26
Checkbot does SEO differently than other tools. Right now, it’s $30.

Checkbot has an average score of 4.9 out of 5 among more than 15,000 active users in the Chrome Web Store — and you can find out why all those Chrome users are happy with Checkbot at 70 percent off right now from TNW Deals. A pro-level 1-year subscription is only $29.99 for a limited time.

2018-12-26
Instagram is reshaping the $10B business of interior design

The platform has changed the way we discover design–but it’s also raised questions about originality, authenticity, and what makes a “real” designer. When interior designer Christina Higham found her first client via Instagram, she knew she was onto something. Higham, the owner San...

2018-12-20
Dog influencers are so popular, they need their own talent agency

The Dog Agency helps canines–and their owners–navigate the lucrative world of paid posts and sponsored content on Instagram. It’s almost noon, and Loni Edwards’s client is drooling on the carpet in the lobby.Read Full Story

2018-12-20
When Fortnite pwnd Google: the most overlooked story of the year

Contrary to appearances, it’s still possible to stare down the tech giants. And in 2018, Fortnite proved it. In 2018, the platforms have the power. Which means if you aren’t Apple, Google, or Facebook, you answer to them. That’s true for advertisers, for publishers, and even for our democracy. And...

2018-12-20
Why so many brands on Instagram look the same

A single design studio is responsible for branding a slew of mega-successful startups like Casper and Allbirds. Here’s how it took over the world–or at least your feed. The Casper mattress. The Allbirds sneaker. Brandless mouthwash or pasta sauce. Birchbox, Prose, Snowe, and Keeps.Read Full Story

2018-12-19
Italian regulators launch crackdown on silly cryptocurrency scams

Italian authorities have moved to protect local investors by temporarily banning the sale of two particularly dodgy cryptocurrency investments within the country for 90 days. In a special bulletin, the Commissione Nazionale per la Società e la Borsa (CONSOB) revealed a string of websites and Facebook pages it has...

2018-12-17
Hong Kong: Bitcoin ‘millionaire’ throws money from rooftop, gets arrested

A supposed Chinese cryptocurrency millionaire has been arrested after throwing stacks of HK $100 ($12) bills from the rooftop of a building in one of Hong Kong’s poorest districts. Self-styled Bitcoin millionaire Wong Ching-Kit announced the bizarre stunt via Facebook. In the post, he declared money would soon be...

2018-12-17
The 2-year-old Instagram influencers who make more than you

The platform’s young stars can rake in five-figure sums for a photo. It’s about “building brand awareness and affinity through generations,” says one expert. In 2016, Madison and Kyler Fisher hit rock bottom. After a business venture gone bust, the Los Angeles-based couple was left...

2018-12-17
Report: Fact-checkers say Facebook has used them for “crisis PR”

Journalists who partnered with Facebook say they’ve lost faith that the social network really cares about ridding itself of false news. Facebook quickly responded. A new report from the Guardian claims Facebook’s partnership with independent journalists to combat disinformation on its social...

2018-12-13
Survey: More support for Sheryl Sandberg at Facebook than in the broader tech industry

Anonymous survey app Blind polled tech workers and found that they think that Sandberg shouldn’t continue in her role as COO. A recent poll from Blind, an anonymous social network for more than 45,000 employees of tech companies like Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and others, revealed how they perceive Facebook COO...

2018-12-13
Inmates in Texas could soon get 3D-printed dentures

After an investigation found that toothless inmates in Texas were rarely offered adequate care, the prison system has pledged to change its ways with some cutting-edge technology. In September, the Houston Chronicle issued some damning findings about the way the Texas prison system treats inmates who lack teeth....

2018-12-13
Google Maps wants you to use Lime for your last-mile trip

Lime vehicles are now listed alongside ride hailing and walking in Google Maps. When you pull up Google Maps to get directions, under the transit option, you generally see a handful of choices: taking the bus or the subway, or hailing an Uber.Read Full Story

2018-12-13
Microsoft launches its Clarity web analytics tool for A/B testing and visualizing user sessions

To help webmasters understand how visitors interact with their sites, Microsoft has launched its new Clarity analytics tool in beta today. Set to rival the likes of Optimizely, Google Optimize and Visual Web Optimizer, Clarity lets you run A/B tests, and play back visualizations of users’ experiences and behavior...

2018-12-13
Google now lets you donate to charities through the Play store

Google is making it easier for its users to give back to the community by introducing donations through its Play store. Android users in select countries can now contribute to causes they believe in using the same payment methods they’ve associated with their Google accounts. The search giant is partnering with 10...

2018-12-13
Fortnite, K-pop, and bright red hearts: What ruled Instagram in 2018

So. Many. Heart. Emojis. Behold, Instagram’s year in review. Whispering, hearts, Fortnite, and K-Pop ruled instagram this year.Read Full Story

2018-12-13
Google+ to shut down early after second major security incident

After another data leak, its second such leak in a year, Google today announced it was shutting down its beleaguered social media platform, Google+. API access will shut down even sooner, within the next 90 days. The newest vulnerability affected 52.5 million users, according to Google. Profile information, including...

2018-12-13
Watch how smoke from the Camp Fire filled the Bay Area

Google Street View cars mounted with air sensors show how the smoke filtered into the city–and how pollution levels can differ drastically over just a few blocks. The Camp Fire–the deadliest, most destructive wildlife in California history–started around 6:30 a.m. on the morning of November 8. By...

2018-12-12
The painful side of tech algorithms in one heartbreaking tweet

A devastating plea to Big Tech goes viral. A devastating story is making its way around Twitter, telling the tale of an indifferent algorithm that got everything right except the sad finale.Read Full Story

2018-12-12
Google Search Trends show off the emotional rollercoaster that was 2018

Google today released its data on search trends in 2018. While these always reflect the state of the world over the course of the year, in this case the list of trending searches range from joyful to very, very sad — we’ve had a rollercoaster of a year. It’s basically like reliving the year itself in a few...

2018-12-12
Anti-robot vigilantes in Arizona try to scare off Waymo’s self-driving cars

The average consumer probably doesn’t know a whole lot about self-driving car technology. But, when exposed to it, most people seem to react with a mixture of caution and optimism. Not everyone likes change though. Nobody understands that more than Waymo’s human drivers. Waymo, a Google sister-company, found the...

2018-12-12
Jack Dorsey tries to clear up his obliviousness about Myanmar atrocities

Thousands of Rohingya have been slaughtered, and Twitter helped fuel the hate. On Sunday the Twitter CEO posted a few tweets about what a fantastic time he had while on a meditation retreat in Myanmar. It was a country, he tweeted, that was “absolutely beautiful” and whose “people are full of...

2018-12-12
Instagram is testing ‘creator’ accounts with special features for influencers

Facebook-owned Instagram is reportedly trialing a new type of account for content creators with large audiences on its platform, according to Hollywood Reporter. The new account – currently being tested by a small group of users – grants access to insights about follows and unfollows, as well as the ability to...

2018-12-12
Moment’s OnePlus 6 cases turn it into a mini DSLR

I’ve begrudgingly come to accept that smartphones are now as good as DSLRs and mirrorless camera for many kinds of everyday photography, but they can’t compete when it comes to lens choices. You’re stuck with whatever field of view your phone came with, limiting the versatility of your gear. Companies like...

2018-12-12
The future of fashion is made-to-order, according to Farfetch CEO José Neves

On the heels of his company’s recent IPO, Farfetch CEO José Neves talks about personalizing fashion, the industry’s problem with waste, and the unexpected benefits of a global recession. In September, a decade after he began knitting together an online marketplace for independent boutiques across...

2018-12-11
RIP Fusion Tables: Google is killing off the beloved data visualization tool

Google will shut down its hybrid database-spreadsheet product effective next year. Users of Google’s Fusion Tables, a kind of hybrid spreadsheet/database/data visualization tool that was never fully integrated into the Google Drive productivity suite, got an email Tuesday saying the service will be shutting...

2018-12-11
The millionaire critic who scared Facebook now wants to help “fix the internet”

David Magerman, the ex-RenTech partner who criticized Robert Mercer, prompted Facebook to go on the attack. Now he’s joining Differential Ventures to invest in tech. In the hedge fund world and in the drama surrounding Cambridge Analytica’s harvesting of personal data, as well as Facebook’s...

2018-12-11
Monopoly man watches disapprovingly as Congress yells at Google’s CEO

Google‘s CEO, Sundar Pichai, is in Washington today. He’s trying to explain how the world’s most advanced technology company works to Congress. At some point we’re sure he’s going to be arrested for witchcraft. Pichai’s not the only fat cat with deep pockets in the room – sure, a lot of those...

2018-12-11
Monopoly guy watches disapprovingly as Congress yells at Google’s CEO

Google‘s CEO, Sundar Pichai, is in Washington today. He’s trying to explain how the world’s most advanced technology company works to Congress. At some point we’re sure he’s going to be arrested for witchcraft. Pichai’s not the only fat cat with deep pockets in the room – sure, a lot of those...

2018-12-11
The chatbot bubble has officially burst

Google Allo is the latest casualty of Silicon Valley’s course correction on conversational interfaces. Google Allo is done. Announced in 2016, it was Google’s big attempt to build a Google chatbot right into your text message conversations. Allo’s death signals something important to the tech...

2018-12-11
Boost your site’s SEO ranking with this $24 tool

No shame in low Google rankings, but the reality is that if you aren’t showing up in the top 3 for your most important keywords, you probably aren’t being found at all. You can start getting some return on all that digital effort with some solid SEO knowledge like that offered by SERPCloud Pro. Right now, you can...

2018-12-11
Instagram gets WhatsApp-style walkie-talkie voice messages

Facebook-owned Instagram has just added one of the best features from its sister app, WhatsApp: direct voice messages. Just as in WhatsApp, you can find it in any conversation (including group chats) in the Direct messaging section of the app. Tap and hold the microphone button located in the text entry box, and you...

2018-12-11
Elon Musk talks pot, the SEC, and Twitter flame wars

The Tesla CEO addressed a wide range of issues in an interview over the weekend. This weekend CBS News aired a wide-ranging interview with Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk during which he reflected on his companies, his erratic behavior, his pot smoking, and even the SEC. Here are the top takeaways from that interview...

2018-12-10
Meet the Tumblr refugees trying to save its adult content from oblivion

Tumblr posters of porn and kink fear a ban on naughty content will eviscerate not only their blogs, but the communities they’ve built on the networks. “The internet is for porn,” goes the song from musical Avenue Q. Since Tumblr announced this week that it will no longer be part of that internet,...

2018-12-08
Apple, Amazon, and Google drop as tech stocks bear the brunt of China trade worries

With the arrest of a Huawei executive in Canada, investors fear the fate of a tentative tariff truce. Investors in tech stocks are nervously watching as the Trump administration continues to press China on trade. Some of them are unloading tech stocks to reduce risk in front of the weekend.Read Full Story

2018-12-07
This tech company has a very, very unfortunate name

KnowTechie is one of my favorite blogs. Earlier this week, it published a post about a super-cheap ‘smart’ RGB bias light from Chinese tech brand MINGER. Yes, you read that right. MINGER. It’s unfortunate the branding team at MINGER didn’t stop to Google it first, as MINGER is a rather cruel British insult....

2018-12-07
Mozilla is deeply concerned about Microsoft killing EdgeHTML

Earlier this week, Microsoft announced that it would discontinue the EdgeHTML browser engine. Future versions of Edge would use Google’s Chromium rendering engine, which powers a swathe of browsers, including Chrome and Opera. Edge was never a popular browser, and at the time of writing commands just 4.34 percent...

2018-12-07
Newly minted Oscars host Kevin Hart may have a homophobia problem

Some of Hart’s homophobic tweets have resurfaced. (A lot of them, actually.) He’s deleted them, but he can’t delete people’s memory of them. When future scientists investigate what “Twitter” was, they may discover that it was a magical place where one could go to watch...

2018-12-06
From the View-Master to Sears trash cans, this man designed our world

Charles Harrison designed hundreds of familiar household goods—and, as an African-American executive in the 1960s, helped to blaze new trails. As a child of the 1960s and 1970s, I grew up in a world imagined by industrial designer Charles Harrison—I just didn’t know it. The New York Times has...

2018-12-06
This M.C. Escher-inspired hotel is Instagram gold

The stairs lead to nowhere. M.C. Escher fans, rejoice: You can now stay inside a hotel that brings the artist’s trippy visual illusions to life through its interior design.Read Full Story

2018-12-06

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