Letha Byrd

Letha Byrd

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Following 9
UK
US technology giant Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) is reportedly set to slash 10% of its global workforce – with at least 5,000 job to go by Christmas.The move, first reported by Bloomberg, was described by one internal source as an effort to reduce company costs as competition in the IT industry grows.The international firm sells corporate tech services and products including servers, cybersecurity and storage.But it is now facing heightened competition from cloud computing businesses including Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google.Reports indicate that cuts at the company – which has approximately 50,000 staffers – will not only impact staff in the US, where it is headquartered, but also other countries across the world.It comes as the company reportedly seeks to make $1.5bn in savings over the next three years.
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Once again, an exciting few days at Dmexco have drawn to a close and I've been left feeling humbled to be a part of such an energetic, fast-paced industry.There were certainly some tough questions being asked in the Koelnmesse this year, and while the industry might not yet have all the answers, there is clearly a steely determination to fix the digital ecosystem and make it work better for those not only consuming content but advertisers and platforms too.Looking back at what’s been a jam-packed couple of days, I wanted to share three key learnings from this year’s festival:Don’t underestimate the sheer power of face to faceThe unforgettable interaction between Jack Dorsey and Sir Martin Sorrell stands out as a highlight this year.A year later than originally scheduled, the WPP chief executive finally came face to face with Twitter’s founder on stage in the Congress Hall.
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Over the past couple of episodes, we've talked about how photos affect our lives, and issues around publishing them to the web.Today, we're going to get the answers.There's lots to consider when it comes to ethics or privacy -- but that's not what today's about.All you have to do is look through the archives of National Geographic, Life Magazine or even the Pulitzer Prizes to get a glimpse of the power a good photo can have.When it comes to actually storing your photos it's a messAnd I think it is for everyone since we're not used to having those cameras with us every time everywhere.
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Hot graphics and complex worlds provide a good testbed for algorithmsUnity, the most popular cross-platform game engine favored by video game developers, on Tuesday opened up its platform for machine learning researchers to test their algorithms.Reinforcement learning is a strand of machine learning that teaches agents to perform a specific task in a given environment.It’s been useful for training self-driving cars in simulation before they are tested on the roads, for training robots, and for teaching agents to play games like Go and poker.If a bot makes a good move, it is rewarded with a point.Since it’s been programmed to collect these points, it’ll keep repeating these good actions until it learns how to perform a function.
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An anonymous reader quotes a report from Quartz: At the Bloomberg Global Business Forum today, Carlyle Group co-founder and CEO David Rubenstein asked Microsoft founder Bill Gates to account for one of the most baffling questions of the digital era: Why does it take three fingers to lock or log in to a PC, and why did Gates ever think that was a good idea?Grimacing slightly, Gates deflected responsibility for the crtl-alt-delete key command, saying, "clearly, the people involved should have put another key on to make that work."Rubenstein pressed him: does he regret the decision?"You can't go back and change the small things in your life without putting the other things at risk," Gates said.If I could make one small edit I would make that a single key operation."Gates has made the confession before.
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An anonymous reader shares a report from TechCrunch, adding: "Is the world ready for flying cars?And so did Steve Jurvetson, one of the original investors in SpaceX.The technical backbone for flying cars seems to be there already -- with drones becoming ever-present and advancements in AI and self-driving cars -- but the time is coming soon that flying cars will be the primary mode of transportation."I envision a [future] where you hop in a thing, go in the air, and fly in a straight line.The air is so free of stuff and is so unused compared to the ground, it has to happen in my opinion."Cars today are forced to move on a two-dimensional plane (ramps, clover intersections and tunnels set aside), and while self-driving cars would make it easier for cars to talk to each other and move more efficiently, adding a third dimension to travel would make a lot of sense coming next.
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In the last eight months, BBC News has undergone a major “reprioritizing exercise” focused on creating what the organization now calls “slow news” journalism.That’s meant moving away from pursuing every incremental breaking news update toward publishing fewer but more thoroughly contextualized in-depth stories, as well as more short data visualization pieces.The term “slow news” doesn’t relate to the length of articles but more to the added time BBC journalists take to create them, and the theory is that the audience will spend longer with in-depth pieces, said Jamie Angus, editorial director of BBC Global News.That went toward hiring data visualization specialists and establishing a permanent, dedicated 12-person fact-checking team that publishes articles under the Reality Check sub-brand to help stunt the spread of fake news.“People find the unrelenting nature of the 24-hour news cycle ultimately unrewarding and unfulfilling — it’s like a sugar rush,” said Angus.“Audiences are switched off by news coverage which is just this bad thing happened, followed by another crisis; we had to change our approach.”
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In a major refresh of its smart home products, August has released two new versions of its smart lock, including a cheaper redesigned model and a professional edition of its doorbell camera.The third generation of the August Smart Lock has been completely overhauled with a new elongated industrial design featuring an actual thumb turn compared to the original round look.August has added a new feature called DoorSense, a sensor that can be installed next to your lock that tells you if your door is open or closed.Previously, Auto-Lock only worked on a timer.It’s the second major smart home device maker to redesign and lower the price of its main smart home device after Nest released a cheaper version of its Nest for $169 last month.After using the new Smart Lock for a couple weeks, the changes August has implemented in the third generation product have made it substantially more accessible to people who may think of smart home devices as a hassle.
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China is clamping down even more on bitcoin trading, as it prepares to shut down all digital token exchanges, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.The plan, which regulators revealed to cryptocurrency executives on Friday during a private meeting in Beijing, is the biggest step the country has taken so far to shut down trading of the virtual currency.Earlier this month, regulators banned commercial exchanges trading bitcoin and other digital tokens.But last week's meeting signaled the government is looking to put a halt to all bitcoin trading, including peer-to-peer trading, which allows individual traders to find each other on the internet and trade digital tokens.Since its founding in 2009, bitcoin has made a name for itself by allowing for anonymous transactions.The digital currency is now accepted by more than 100,000 merchants worldwide, including Microsoft, Dish and Subway.
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South Park returned to our screens this week, and if you’re a fan of the show with an Amazon Alexa then it was... interesting (spoilers ahead).Cartman, ever the prankster, starts the show’s 21st season off by triggering a virtual Amazon Alexa, and adding disgusting items to its shopping list.If you watched the show in the same room as your Alexa then the on-screen antics would slowly fill up your Amazon shopping list with some gross items.Later in the episode Cartman returns to even set an alarm for 7AM on Alexa, which triggered the same alarm on one Twitter user’s own Alexa.The episode ends with Cartman tricking Alexa to talk to a Google Home unit and vice versa, creating a never-ending loop of profanity.We’ve seen similar tricks from Burger King, but South Park takes it even further with some hilarious results.
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schwit1 shares a report from ScienceAlert: The brain-dwelling parasite Toxoplasma gondii is estimated to be hosted by at least 2 billion people around the world, and new evidence suggests the lodger could be more dangerous than we think.While the protozoan invader poses the greatest risk to developing fetuses infected in the womb, new research suggests the parasite could alter and amplify a range of neurological disorders, including epilepsy, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's, and also cancer."This study is a paradigm shifter," says one of the team, neuroscientist Dennis Steindler from Tufts University."We now have to insert infectious disease into the equation of neurodegenerative diseases, epilepsy, and neural cancers."The findings are part of an emerging field of research looking into how T. gondii, which is usually transmitted to humans via contact with cat faeces (or by eating uncooked meat), produces proteins that alter and manipulate the brain chemistry of their infected hosts.
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Yes, Apple claims that Face ID on the iPhone X is far more secure than Touch ID ever was.Yet the poetic and the paranoid have already been concocting scenarios in which unlocking your phone with facial recognition is fraught with danger.What if, for example, a thief -- or, perish the idea, a police officer -- demands you stare at your phone to unlock it?Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of software engineering -- who had his own seeming snafu (denied by Apple) with Face ID during Apple's event on Tuesday -- says there are two things you can do to stop nefarious actors from forcing you into Face ID.Thieves -- or even one or two police officers -- aren't always so reasonable as to let you not do what they want.They might just force you to stare.
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Depending on who you ask, Rotten Tomatoes is the reason some movies don't perform at the box office.From a report: Countless movie executives, including producers, have told Deadline and the New York Times that the number atop a movie's page on Rotten Tomatoes signifying whether the majority of critics enjoyed or disliked a movie rules the box office.Director Brett Ratner was quoted as saying "I think it's the destruction of our business" while others have called for its demise.According to research conducted by Yves Bergquist, director of the Data & Analytics Project at USC's Entertainment Technology Center, that's not correct.Bergquist collected data from 150 movies this year that made more than $1 million at the box office.Using those Box Office Mojo numbers and comparing them to the critic and audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, Bergquist then "looked at [the] correlation between scores and financial performance" to determine if there was a linear line that could be drawn between low scores and bad box office performance.
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BMW has a new electric concept vehicle designed to show how it envisions occupying its electric model range between the i3 and the i8: The i Visions Dynamics.The four-dour luxury coupe has a head-turning design, including Tesla-familiar features like flush door handles, but BMW is also touting its range at a whopping 373 miles, with a top speed of over 120 mph and a 0-to-60 mph time of just four seconds.The concept is part of BMW’s overall electrification plan, which sees the automaker fielding 25 electrified models by 2025, with 12 of those being purely electric vehicles.The i Vision Dynamics represents a look at what some of those cars can look like.Fotografie: Victor Jon Goico – http://www.goico.eu Postproduction: Wagnerchic – http://www.wagnerchic.com & Grit Hackenberg – http://www.grithackenberg.com CD: Clemens GrosslercherIt has a fully glass roof without any cross-supports, and a focus on interior comfort and passenger experience.
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It seems to have sat quietly, perhaps even enjoying the show.In a new ad featuring Jeff Bridges, Lyft explores the transportation choices people have made in the past.Here we are in 1836, with a grizzly old Bridges going, well, somewhere along the Oregon Trail."You always have a choice," the impressively bearded Bridges says.Surely at its still much larger rival.In fact, the tagline gives it away.
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Hong Kong-based TNG Wallet says it has locked in a “record-breaking” US$115 million series A investment to accelerate expansion across Southeast Asia and South Asia.It also wants to use the cash to acquire other firms and invest in new technologies such as blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI), and a digital customer registration process, states the firm’s release.It’s a massive round, even in Chinese terms.It makes the startup a half-unicorn: Post-money, the firm’s valuation sits at US$565 million, says TNG.The investment was led by Chinese private equity fund New Margin Capital.It lets users pay bills and shop at partner merchants.
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The 2017 Frankfurt International Auto Show is only a few days away now, but BMW has decided to pull the curtain back a bit early on its largest SUV yet: the Concept X7 iPerformance.The upcoming crossover will top the German carmaker’s existing X5 SUV by offering three-row seating, as well launching as a plug-in hybrid model.BMW has been busy with its concepts lately, with the X7 coming after the recent 8 Series and Z4 reveals.The first noticeable thing about the SUV’s design is the front end and how BMW covered it with a huge version of their trademark “kidney” grilles.Contrasting this is a pair of extra thin LED headlights, giving the whole thing a big-nostril, angry face kind of look.The car’s overall profile is much more reasonable, however, with plenty of room provided for three rows of seats, and large wheels it keep everything in proportion.
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PlayStation has took up the fight against the notion that gaming is a waste of time with an ad showing how job applicant Gary best utilised his time with the joystick.The Interview, from BBH New York, showed how Gary can work under pressure, is a quick thinker and won’t back down from a challenge, all skills built up through gaming.The ad could help fight negative conventions and inspire a slew of CVs to adopt the numerous skills gamers pick up during their adventures.God of War, Star Wars: Battlefront 2 and NBA 2K8 feature in the ad which features as part of the brand’s Greatness Awaits campaign.The agency has held the account since 2013, overseeing the transition from the PS3 to PS4.
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We’ll also be posting a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next two months; here’s what we have so far (send us your events!Here’s all the answer you could possibly ask for:Yes, that’s right, if you get a Kuri, you are guaranteed a pancake dress up dance party.Here it is, in full:And if you want an actual pancake robot, this is one of the most satisfying robot videos of all time, if you skip ahead to about 1:10 for the pancake pick n’ stack:Okay, that’s enough robot-pancake YouTube rabbit hole for one Friday.
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As time has gone on, however, that desire to clamp down on abuse of power has lightened, with only Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) continuing to openly challenge the agencies' conduct and highlight discrepancies between what is claimed and what is actually done.Between now and the end of the year, a second critical battle between the spy agencies and Congress is going to play out as the NSA and FBI desperately try to retain the ability to spy illegally on American citizens, and lawmakers assess how far they should push back and limit those actions.Earlier this month, we saw the start of the NSA pushback effort: first, an unusual public document defending the use of Section 702 in which it pushes the well-worn line that the program "saves lives and protects the nation" – the same argument put forward for protecting other programs that were subsequently declared unconstitutional.At the same time, President Trump also announced out of the blue a decision to revive the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB), which had been dead for over a year after four of its five board members and its executive director either resigned or did not have their terms renewed following a huge restriction on its powers by Congress.Trump announced that he was nominating Adam Klein to become the chair of the PCLOB.It is no coincidence that just one month earlier, Klein had written an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal in which he explicitly defended the most controversial aspect of Section 702 – a vast database of information on US citizens that has been built through a willful misreading of the law and which the FBI is allowed to search in looking for leads in domestic crimes.
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