Internet Use/New Technologies

14 August 2017

Vanishing app: Snapchat struggles as Facebook bites back The Guardian

Is Snapchat – the social media app famous for its disappearing messages – in danger of doing a vanishing act of its own? It’s a question some are asking after investors turned on the company again this week following a second set of poor results which have turned a once-hot tech company into a stock market casualty.

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13 August 2017

In China, Facebook Tests the Waters With a Stealth App New York Times

Facebook and many of its apps have been blocked in China for years. To change that, Mark Zuckerberg has made a big point of meeting with Chinese politicians, reading stodgy Communist Party propaganda, studying Mandarin and — perhaps more daunting — speaking it in public.

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11 August 2017

The Fate of Online Trust in the Next Decade Pew Research Center

Many experts say lack of trust will not be a barrier to increased public reliance on the internet. Those who are hopeful that trust will grow expect technical and regulatory change will combat users’ concerns about security and privacy. Those who have doubts about progress say people are inured to risk, addicted to convenience and will not be offered alternatives to online interaction. Some expect the very nature of trust will change.

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10 August 2017

We can stop hacking and trolls, but it would ruin the internet: A new way to run the internet would scupper ransomware and hacking, but its authoritarian backers could control everything we do online New Scientist

Cyberterrorism fears are through the roof. Ransomware is wreaking havoc on corporations, hospitals and individuals. Printers can be hacked to take down the world’s largest websites. Put simply, the internet is a mess.

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09 August 2017

Encourage children to spend more time online, says former GCHQ head The Guardian

Parents should be encouraging their children to spend more time online in order to “save the country,” the former head of GCHQ has said.

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The Man Who Wrote Those Password Rules Has a New Tip: N3v$r M1^d! Bill Burr’s 2003 report recommended using numbers, obscure characters and capital letters and updating regularly—he regrets the error Wall Street Journal

The man who wrote the book on password management has a confession to make: He blew it. Back in 2003, as a midlevel manager at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Bill Burr was the author of “NIST Special Publication 800-63. Appendix A.” The 8-page primer advised people to protect their accounts by inventing awkward new words rife with obscure characters, capital letters and numbers—and to change them regularly.

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06 August 2017

ITU releases 2017 global information and communication technology facts and figures International Telecommunication Union

New data released by ITU, the United Nations specialized agency for information and communication technologies (ICTs), show that 830 million young people are online, representing 80 per cent of the youth population in 104 countries. ITU's ICT Facts and Figures 2017​ also shows a significant increase in broadband access and subscriptions with China leading the way.

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05 August 2017

China's online population hits 751m Xinhua

China's online population reached 751 million in June, up 2.7 percent compared with the end of 2016, according to a report on China's Internet published Friday.

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03 August 2017

For Facebook, erasing hate speech proves a daunting challenge Washington Post

Francie Latour was picking out produce in a suburban Boston grocery store when a white man leaned toward her two young sons and, just loudly enough for the boys to hear, unleashed a profanity-laced racist epithet.

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A Better, Safer Battery Could Be Coming to a Laptop Near You New York Times

A start-up company is trying to turbocharge a type of battery that has been a mainstay for simple devices like flashlights and toys, but until now has been ignored as an energy source for computers and electric cars.

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01 August 2017

Tech Companies Policing the Web Will Do More Harm Than Good Wired

The influence and proliferation of extremist content, hate speech, and state-sponsored propaganda on the internet has risen around the globe, as demonstrated by Russia’s involvement in the US election and the rise of ISIS recruitment online. As a result, the pressure that governments, media, and civil society are placing on technology companies to take meaningful action to stem the flow of this content is at an all-time high.

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31 July 2017

Facebook 'dark ads' can swing political opinions, research shows The Guardian

Using “psychographic” profiles of individual voters generated from publicly stated interests really does work, according to new research presented at the Def Con hacking conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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29 July 2017

OECD broadband statistics update: Mobile broadband penetration at 99% in OECD area OECD

High-speed Internet use continues to grow in OECD countries with mobile broadband penetration reaching 99 subscriptions per 100 inhabitants in December 2016, up from 91 per 100 inhabitants a year earlier, according to new data released by the OECD.

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24 July 2017

The digital future of work: What will automation change? McKinsey

Rapid advances in robotics and artificial intelligence are making inroads in the workplace, with machines carrying out physical and cognitive activities. What will this mean for employment?

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The digital future of work: What skills will be needed? McKinsey

Robots have long carried out routine physical activities, but increasingly machines can also take on more sophisticated tasks. Experts provide advice on the skills people will need going forward.

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Beijing Wants A.I. to Be Made in China by 2030 New York Times

If Beijing has its way, the future of artificial intelligence will be made in China.

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21 July 2017

Twitter's internal numbers show it's getting less awful at fighting abuse Washington Post

Twitter on Thursday offered some top-line stats in a company blog post about the results of its latest anti-abuse efforts — showing how its approach is working as social media firms struggle with policing content on their networks.

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20 July 2017

Facebook Is Pursuing a Subscription Tool for News Outlets on Its Site New York Times

Facebook is working on a new tool that could help drive subscriptions to news organizations that publish articles directly on the online service, an effort to improve the fraught relationship between the social giant and media companies.

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19 July 2017

The Internet's Future Is More Fragile Than Ever, Says One Of Its Inventors Fast Company

Vint Cerf, the co-creator of tech that makes the internet work, worries about hacking, fake news, autonomous software, and perishable digital history.

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Elon Musk: regulate AI to combat 'existential threat' before it's too late The Guardian

Tesla and Space X chief executive Elon Musk has pushed again for the proactive regulation of artificial intelligence because “by the time we are reactive in AI regulation, it’s too late”.

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16 July 2017

Come friendly robots and take our dullest jobs The Observer

We are currently going through one of those periodic phases of “automation anxiety” when we become convinced that the robots are coming for our jobs. These fears are routinely pooh-poohed by historians and economists. The historians point out that machines have been taking away jobs since the days of Elizabeth I – who refused to grant William Lee a patent on his stocking frame on the grounds that it would take work away from those who knitted by hand. And while the economists concede that machines do indeed destroy some jobs, they point out that the increased productivity that they enable has generally created more new jobs (and industries) than they displaced.

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13 July 2017

What We Lose When the World Moves On From Email New York Times

Though its political implications are yet unclear, the publication of an email chain in which Donald Trump Jr. arranged a June 2016 meeting with a lawyer peddling the Russian government’s help for his father’s presidential campaign ought to inspire some pretty obvious tech advice: Step away from the inbox, stupid!

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11 July 2017

Will Bitcoin Tear Itself Apart? Bloomberg

It’s time for bitcoin traders to batten down the hatches. The notoriously volatile cryptocurrency, whose 160 percent surge this year has captivated everyone from Wall Street bankers to Chinese grandmothers, could be headed for one of its most turbulent stretches yet.

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04 July 2017

Inside the darknet: where Australians buy and sell illegal goods The Guardian

“Our goal is to become known as the most consistent, reliable supplier of cocaine in the Aussie DNM scene,” the online listing reads. “It has been requested from a number of customers that we offer a more affordable option of cocaine so we have decided to bring out VALUE QUALITY cocaine.”

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30 June 2017

British teenagers among world's most extreme internet users, report says The Guardian

More than one in three British 15-year-olds are “extreme internet users” who spend at least six hours a day online – which is more than their counterparts in all the other 34 OECD countries apart from Chile, research has found.

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