Howard Marcinkowski

Howard Marcinkowski

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Following 10
Sweden
Netflix plans to bring in 1 billion euros on the bond market through an offer to investors outside the united states.
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At some point, a giant company can cross the line from market dominance to monopoly.Have Google, Facebook and Amazon reached that point?“Google has an 88 percent market share in search advertising, Facebook (and its subsidiaries Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger) owns 77 percent of mobile social traffic and Amazon has a 74 percent share in the e-book market,” University of Southern California Annenberg Innovation Lab director emeritus Jonathan Taplin wrote in an April 22 op-ed in the New York Times.“In classic economic terms, all three are monopolies.”High-profile journalist Glenn Greenwald, who won a Pulitzer Prize for his reporting on National Security Agency spying on Americans (revealed in leaks by Edward Snowden) tweeted April 22 that a discussion on the tech firms’ market domination was “way overdue.”“The unrestrained power amassed by the Silicon Valley monopolies is staggering,” Greenwald tweeted.Google, Facebook and Amazon did not respond immediately to requests for comment on Taplin’s claims.In Europe, Google for seven years has been facing antitrust allegations from the European Union that the company abused its dominance in search.A decision in the case is expected within months.The Mountain View company this month also agreed to pay Russia a $7.85 million fine and open its Android mobile operating system to rival search engines in the country, after a dispute with Russian competition authorities.Taplin, in his op-ed, argued that Google, Facebook and Amazon “have stymied innovation on a broad scale.”With industry giants facing limited competition, incumbent companies have a profound advantage over new entrants, Taplin said.And the tech firms’ explosive growth has caused massive damage to companies already operating, he said.“The platforms of Google and Facebook are the point of access to all media for the majority of Americans.While profits at Google, Facebook and Amazon have soared, revenues in media businesses like newspaper publishing or the music business have, since 2001, fallen by 70 percent,” Taplin said.The rise of Google and Facebook have diverted billions of dollars from content creators to “owners of monopoly platforms,” he said.“All content creators dependent on advertising must negotiate with Google or Facebook as aggregator.Taplin proposed that for the three tech behemoths, there are “a few obvious regulations to start with.”At minimum, he said, the firms should be barred from buying major firms such as Spotify and Snapchat.“Monopoly is made by acquisition — Google buying AdMob and DoubleClick, Facebook buying Instagram and WhatsApp, Amazon buying, to name just a few, Audible, Twitch, Zappos and Alexa.”And another possible remedy, with Google, would be to regulate it as a public utility and require it “to license out patents, for a nominal fee, for its search algorithms, advertising exchanges and other key innovations,” Taplin said.And Taplin took aim at the “safe harbor” provision of the federal Digital Millennium Copyright Act.That section of the act protects internet companies from monetary damages when their users and other third parties commit violations against intellectual property.The safe harbor section “allows companies like Facebook and Google’s YouTube to free ride on the content produced by others,” he said.Taplin acknowledged that under the administration of President Donald Trump — who has spoken strongly against government regulation and has moved to deregulate industries on a number of fronts — it’s unlikely a priority will be placed on regulating internet firms.“Ultimately we may have to wait four years, at which time the monopolies will be so dominant that the only remedy will be to break them up.Force Google to sell DoubleClick.Force Facebook to sell WhatsApp and Instagram.” Photo: A Google data center in Council Bluffs, Iowa (AP Photo/Google, Connie Zhou, File)Tags: amazon, facebook, Glenn Greenwald, Google, monopolies, Monopoly, regulate, regulation
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FIFA 17 and Dragon Age: Origins are available now on EA's monthly subscription service.They’re also on Origin Access, the PC equivalent of the monthly service that offers a selection of free games and discounts on EA published titles.Launching last September for almost every single platform under the sun, FIFA 17 received a very warm reception from our resident footie fanatic Max Parker.“FIFA 17 is another strong entry in the iconic series, and one that looks to lay the groundwork for future titles by switching to a new engine.The hyper-realistic graphics are great, with facial expressions finally helping players look more than mannequins.”EA and Origin Access will cost you £3.99 a month, or you can grab a free trial period as a first-time user.
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Ideally, archived audio files should be as close to the original CD as possible, with complete and accurate metadata, encoded in a lossless format (usually Free Lossless Audio Codec, or FLAC).This requires a lot of space, the cost of which would once have been prohibitive, but the plummeting price of storage makes it feasible to keep those files as a backup, and make copies for everyday use.You can also encode copies using lossy codecs for playback on devices with limited storage.A 'secure' CD ripper ensures audio files are free from errors by reading each sector of the disc several times, and comparing the results with data collected from other users.Although every Windows PC comes with software for backing up CDs, it's not legal everywhere.The best free CD ripper for Windows, and perfect if you have time to invest in the setup
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That’s why we’ve compiled a quick and dirty list of this week’s top 10 tech stories, from our review of the Samsung Galaxy S8 to how you can stay cool this summer — it’s all here.The Galaxy S8 is worth the hype and the wait we endured since the release of the year-old Galaxy S7 Edge (which frankly looks dated now with its home button).But in a time where you can get a fantastic smartphone for $400 or less, is it worth dropping $750 or more on the S8?But fret not; you can still enjoy all the perks of summer without its nocturnal drawbacks thanks to the Bfan, a bed-cooling system that will help you stay dry and sweat-free without wasting tons of energy (not to mention money).The clever solution for hot sleepers has already fared remarkably well on both Kickstarter and Indiegogo, where it raised a total of nearly $800,000.Facebook has some pretty surprising ideas about the future of communication, and they extend far beyond news feeds and even augmented reality.
China
Google’s voice-activated assistant can now recognise who’s talking to it on Google’s Home speaker.An update released Thursday enables Home’s built-in assistant to learn the different voices of up to six people, although they can’t all be talking to the internet-connected speaker at the same time.Distinguishing voices will allow Home to be more personal in some of its responses, depending on who triggers the assistant with the phrase, “OK Google” or “Hey Google.”For instance, once Home is trained to recognise a user named Joe, the assistant will automatically be able to tell him what traffic is like on his commute, list events on his daily calendar or even play his favourite songs.Then another user named Jane could get similar information from Home, but customised for her.The ability to distinguish voices may help Home siphon sales from Amazon.com’s Echo, a competing product that features its own voice-activated assistant, Alexa.
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Withings has canceled the production of its Apple-HomeKit-enabled Home Plus security camera, according to a report by 9to5Mac.A patent dispute between Apple and Withings parent company Nokia is the apparent cause.Withings' second-generation Home Plus camera was touted back in January as one of the first DIY security cams to work with Apple's HomeKit platform.HomeKit allows iPhone customers to access a variety of connected devices from a single, unifying Home app, as well as use Siri to control the devices via voice command.The addition of an Apple TV into the mix enables HomeKit customers to use Siri commands remotely.The Withings Home Plus looked very similar to the first-gen Withings Home camera with a few key updates.
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Welcome to Lex: AWS's AI-as-a-platform-serviceIf you couldn't feel the love this week, you're lacking a heart.Tech firms threw AI code and services at devs in a further attempt to secede and ultimately tie them into their respective ways of talking to machines.Facebook open-sourced its Caffe2 deep-learning framework – open-sourcing of code being a proven way in tech of increasing uptake by removing legal and licensing hurdles for the all-important, canary-in-the-coalmine developer demographic that helps drive early adoption and toe-hold acceptance of new tech.Microsoft updated its Cognitive Services with the addition of three APIs – Face, Computer Vision and Content Moderator through its Azure portal.The APIs let computers understand – supposedly – a picture, to compare faces and group them, and to quarantine images – something Facebook might want to tackle given its problems.
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Apple has promised that one day its millions of iPhones, iPads and Macs will be built entirely from recycled materials.The bold pledge, loosely detailed in the Cupertino giant's annual Environment Responsibility Report for 2017, presents the idea of a closed-loop supply chain in the hopes that one day Apple and other technology companies can "stop mining the earth altogether".Apple's ambition to halt mining for rare metals and toxic materials has a small catch, however: it isn't completely sure how to do it.In the report, Apple cites its recycling program Apple Renew and its continued promotion of refurbished devices as integral to its eco-friendly ambitions.It also talks up its army of disassembly robots, dubbed Liam, which it says was used to construct Mac Mini computers from aluminium recovered from iPhone 6 enclosures.Yet while Apple is happy to announce that iPhone 6s logic boards will be made from recycled tin solder in the short term, the "how" of its closed-loop goal is still something of an unknown quantity.
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Stack Overflow is an essential component to any developer’s toolkit, acting as a repository of all programming knowledge.If you’re puzzled by Python, or confused about Clojure, it has the answers you need.This ubiquity across languages has allowed Stack Overflow’s data scientists to observe some interesting trends about its users.It’s used everywhere, from tedious enterprise tech, to even more tedious finance applications.It’s also used in Sharepoint, which is positively narcolepsy-inducing.That’s likely because it’s used in environments where developers keep rigid schedules.
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Let’s talk about affiliate marketing and native ads.Native ads have been a trend for the last two years.Native ads and teasers are the same things, aren’t they?When Western companies tell you how cool they are, they forget that we invented the teaser ad about three years before the native advertising companies sprang up overseas.I’m glad that I represent a company that was one of the first to come up with this format.This is a growing trend — more and more companies will be using this format, for several reasons.
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How do you get those danged kids off their Snapchat and Instagram when they're behind the wheel heading to Coachella?Relate to them on their level with music.That's Honda's strategy with "The DT" music video.DT stands for Designated Texter, the person who rides shotgun and provides the driver with text messages, food and directions while the driver has the moderately more important job of keeping everyone in the car alive.The parody video may be purposefully lame, but it highlights an important issue for Distracted Driving Awareness Month: More things are competing for the driver's attention when they're behind the wheel, which can lead to dire consequences.For context, the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute reported that nearly 70 percent of driving accidents in the US over a three-year period involved a distraction.
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The HMD-made Nokia 6 is starting to get Android 7.1.1.Considering that the smartphone was just launched earlier this year, that doesn’t seem to be unusual.But considering the messy Android update situation, that’s never really a given.But with HMD Global pushing out the latest, at least as far as non-Google phones are concerned, version of Android to the mid-range phone, it is making good on its promise to be the best there is when it comes to Android updates.When you think about it, the Nokia 6 isn’t exactly phenomenal aside from its heritage.It’s a 5.5-inch Android phone with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430, 3 or 4 GB of RAM, 32 or 64 GB of storage, and a Full HD screen.
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That, plus a handy “who’s speaking” overlay, will be rolling out soon to members of the Xbox One Insiders program.Microsoft rolled out the Arena feature for the Xbox One last fall, allowing users to participate in Microsoft-organized tournaments for an Xbox One game, Killer Instinct.But the new update allows players to participate in those hosted tournaments as well as those that players organize themselves—the feature Microsoft originally promised would sell the platform.Players will be able to organize those tournaments via Clubs, essentially clans of players who share the same interest.To set up a tournament, users will have to go into the beta Xbox app on Windows 10, go to the Club tab, then click Create tournament.Hosted tournaments will also be coming to Halo Wars 2 and Smite, with player-generated tournaments presumably due sometime in the future, Microsoft said.
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Installing a pool has historically been a hassle for homeowners, as well as a money suck.Not so with Modpool, a new shipping container-based solution.Meet Modpools, the Canadian brand responsible for patent-pending pools that utilize the “structural rigidity of a modified shipping container to provide end users with a relocatable hot pool.” Modpool promises setup that takes just minutes, and also wants you to spend time in your pool year-round.To that end, it has developed controls capable of increasing water temperature up to 30 degrees per hour in -10 degrees Celsius weather.And because this is a 21st-century innovation, you can control temperature, jets, and lighting from your smartphone.Mark Kohlen of Honomobo, the company making the Modpools, spoke to Digital Trends about the creative new use of these giant crates, and whether or not you should look into investing in one.
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This is the first look at the next installment of one of the most popular, beloved sci-fi sagas of all time.Disney and Lucasfilm’s Star Wars Celebration event is in full swing right now, but you don’t need to be at the Orlando convention to see one of the biggest pieces of Star Wars news to drop this year: the first trailer for Star Wars: Episode VIII – The Last Jedi.The studio has released the first look at The Last Jedi today in the form of a two-minute trailer — technically, a “teaser” — for the highly anticipated sequel to 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens.The new trailer certainly delivers the goods, with a montage of scenes featuring Daisy Ridley’s Rey training to become a Jedi under the tutelage of franchise veteran Mark Hamill’s Luke Skywalker, as well as scenes featuring many of the new trilogy’s other, fan-favorite protagonists.Written and directed by Rian Johnson (Brick, Looper), The Last Jedi continues the beloved sci-fi saga in the aftermath of the events of The Force Awakens, which saw Rey discover her own sensitivity to The Force, former stormtrooper Finn (John Boyega) find his inner hero, and ace pilot Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) journey from one corner of the galaxy to another in service of the greater good.The previous installment also saw the franchise lose one of its most beloved characters, and The Last Jedi will likely explore the way its cast of veterans and newcomers deal with the fallout of that loss.
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(Reuters) – Ride services company Uber’s said on Tuesday its head of communications, Rachel Whetstone, will leave the company.Whetstone’s departure comes weeks after two of Uber’s high-level executives announced their plans to leave.Uber had recently faced calls for consumers to boycott the company and make changes in senior management following a series of revelations about its culture and business tactics.In February, a female former Uber engineer published a blog post describing Uber as a workplace where sexual harassment was common and went unpunished.The blog post prompted an internal investigation that is being led by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.(Reporting by Divya Grover in Bengaluru; Editing by Jonathan Oatis and Bill Trott)
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Persona 5 has debuted at number one in the UK Sales Chart after its first week on sale, UKIE has confirmed.Having already shipped over 1.5 million copies worldwide, the stylish JRPG has made a huge splash in the UK during the past week.UKIE has said it is 'by far the biggest launch for a Persona title and the first ever All Formats No1 for developer and publisher Atlus.'We expected Persona 5 to be a big hit, but managing to surpass the likes of Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands and Mass Effect Andromeda in the sales chart is mighty impressive.To put things into context, Persona 5 is the first JRPG to grasp the top spot since Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch back in 2013.Simon Miller scored Persona 5 a 9/10 in his review, describing it as one of the finest JRPGS you can find on PS4, or any other console for that matter.
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according to a new filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.To be sure, Fenton was expected to depart the company’s board once his term expires, according to reports going back to when Twitter was searching for a permanent CEO.Twitter, at the time, was going through a lot of turmoil and big changes at the top were to be expected as the company finally settled on co-founder Jack Dorsey as its new CEO.“Peter Fenton, whose term expires at the upcoming annual meeting of stockholders, will not stand for re-election at the mutual agreement of the Board and Mr. Fenton,” the company said in the filing.“The Company and the Board are grateful to Mr. Fenton for his years of service.”Since then, Twitter has added former Facebook CTO Bret Taylor to its board and former Googler Omid Kordestani.
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