Tony Taylor

Tony Taylor

Followers 118
Following 23
US
Small business lending challenger Iwoca has closed a total fundraise of £150m, led by an earlier £7.5m investment from London-listed fund Augmentum Fintech.City A.M. understands the raise was made up of a £20m series D equity funding round and £130m in debt capital.Existing investor Prime Ventures also participated, alongside NIBC Bank which is understood to have financed the remaining £130m credit facility.A person familiar with the matter told this paper that the final fundraise, first reported by City A.M. in January, will be used to expand Iwoca’s presence in Germany, both in terms of staff and customer base.The fintech firm, which offers credit facilities to small businesses across the UK and Europe, has now raised just under £70m in equity funding to date and £350m overall.Read more: Business lender Iwoca nabs £7.5m with a bigger funding raise on the horizon
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You can’t browse the internet without seeing a sensational headlines announcing the imminent ascendency of the driverless car.Or are these all cases of not letting the facts get in the way of a good headline?Current guidelines mandate human supervision in the vehicle being tested.The “scrapping” refers to an announcement from the Department for Transport that doesn’t actually commit to removing this requirement, but rather to developing a process that may lead to removing the need for on-board human supervision during testing.We are certainly moving forwards, but slower than the media might lead you to believe.So here’s a dose of reality to help to separate fact from fiction.
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Marriott is now offering an easy way to confirm whether or not your personal details were stolen in the massive Starwood hack that was revealed by the hotel giant in November, 2018.Guests who suspect their data may have been involved are asked to fill out an online form, which will allow the company to make an accurate check.But it’s unable to say how long it’ll take to respond, saying only that it will reply “as soon as reasonably practicable and consistent with applicable law.”Yes, it is rather ironic that you have to submit personal data to find out if your personal data was stolen.But if you can still trust the company to handle your data in a secure manner, then the process has the potential to offer peace of mind about whether or not your details were caught up in the hack.The damaging security breach, which was first reported in November last year, affected accounts that had used Starwood’s guest reservation database between 2014 and September 10, 2018.
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UK
Almond, cashew, coconut, oat, soy, and even pea: the list of plant-based milks available is ever-growing – and as our options increase, so too does the amount of people declaring they’ve ditched cow’s milk.When I asked people on Twitter, more than 40 converts replied, citing health, skincare, animal welfare and environmental concerns around cow’s milk.“Since switching to oat milk, I feel so much better.”Another said they were vegetarian, but felt like a “hypocrite” still having dairy, so went vegan and switched to almond, rice, and soy milk.But away from the social media bubble, the national stats on dairy consumption tell a different story.The amount of milk we’re consuming per person has decreased in recent years, but only slightly, according to data the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) shared with HuffPost UK.
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Aimy Wissa, assistant professor of mechanical science and engineering (MechSE) at Illinois, leads an interdisciplinary research team to study click beetles to inspire more agile robots.The team, which includes MechSE Assistant Professor Alison Dunn and Dr. Marianne Alleyne, a research scientist in the Department of Entomology, recently presented their ongoing and novel work on the quick release mechanism of click beetles at the 2019 Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB) Annual Meeting.Ophelia Bolmin, a graduate student in Wissa's Bio-inspired Adaptive Morphology (BAM) Lab, presented novel synchrotron X-ray footage that showed the internal latch mechanism of the click beetle, and demonstrated for the first time to the scientific community how the hinge morphology and mechanics enable this unique clicking mechanism.The presentation, "The click beetle latch mechanism: An in-vivo study using synchrotron X-rays," was part of an invited symposium on mechanisms of energy flow in organismal movement.This work builds on research that was initiated by the Illinois team nearly two years ago, detailing the click beetles' legless self-righting jumping mechanism.The team already built prototypes of a hinge-like spring-loaded device that are being incorporated into a robot.
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Apex Legends, the Battle Royale shooter that is being tagged as a potential Fortnite killer, was released less than two weeks ago, but developer Respawn Entertainment said that it has already banned over 16,000 cheaters from the game.Respawn revealed the mind-boggling statistic through an update post on the Apex Legends sub-Reddit, where it also called for the community to try to capture proof of cheaters, such as a screenshot or video clip, and send them information through this link.Respawn added that if players are unable to acquire proof of cheating, they may just forward the alleged cheaters’ IDs, and the developer will investigate the reported accounts itself.There is currently no in-game feature in Apex Legends to report cheaters, but Respawn said that it is “a very good idea.” There is no timeline yet on when the feature will arrive to the Battle Royale shooter, but given the slew of updates that have already been released for the game, its addition might not take long.“Cheaters suck,” Respawn wrote in the Reddit post, and legitimate Apex Legends players will agree.The cheating problem has apparently escalated to the point that Twitch streamers are blatantly implementing hacks during broadcasts.
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Bad news for fans of Razer's digital game store, which the gaming hardware manufacturer only launched in April.As part of the company's "realignment plans," it's shutting the Razer Game Store on Feb. 28," according to an announcement on its storefront that PC Gamer noticed Saturday."It's been a privilege for us to recommend and deliver great digital game deals to you," the Irvine, California-based company said."We will be investing in other ways to deliver great content and introduce game promotions through Razer Gold, our virtual credits system."The store, first launched in the US and Europe markets and later Southeast Asia, offered exclusive game deals and discounts on peripherals.The company will still honor any preorders made through the store.
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NASA is launching an ambitious new mission: To map the entire sky in order to understand the origins of the universe.The Spectro-Photometer for the History of the Universe, Epoch of Reionization and Ices Explorer (SPHEREx) mission will launch in 2023 and is planned to last for two years, surveying hundreds of millions of galaxies both close to us and far away.SPHEREx will use optical and near-infrared light to survey the sky, capturing data on over 300 million galaxies and the more than 100 million stars within our own galaxy.Its primary goal is to learn about how our universe evolved and how common the essential ingredients for life are in planetary systems in our galaxy.It will map the entire sky every six months to create a map in 96 color bands, and will be searching for water and organic molecules like methanol or acetone in regions where stars and being born and new planets are forming.“This amazing mission will be a treasure trove of unique data for astronomers,” Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, said in a statement.
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UK
For months, reports have indicated that Apple was poised to give us a glimpse of its long-awaited Netflix competitor sometime this spring.Whether we will soon after have access to what increasingly sounds like an Apple Prime when the tech giant finally reveals it, however, is another story.We’ve known about Apple’s forthcoming streaming service for what feels like an eternity.And now that multiple sources have reported it’s slated to be revealed in March, it would certainly seem like we can soon stop speculating whether the product will be a legitimate Netflix and Amazon Prime competitor or a sexless experiment in mediocrity.But Variety reported on Friday that it could be many months before the service sees an official release:Sources familiar with the plans say Apple’s video service will be targeted for a launch in summer or fall rather than the April timing that has been the subject of media speculation.
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Three day weekends are one of the best times to buy just about anything.With Presidents’ Day happening on Monday, February 18, this entire weekend is filled with mattress sales, smartwatch deals, and many more great Presidents’ Day savings.If you find yourself on this page, however, you’re probably only interested in this Fitbit Versa deal going on right now.So if you’re looking for a wearable that can help you track steps, sleep, and activity, now is a great time to pick one up for less.Which really isn’t a surprise considering the Apple Watch Series 4 and Series 3 are two of the most popular watches on the market right now.However, if you’re looking for something more affordable, and with more of a fitness focus, the Fitbit Versa is definitely an option you should consider.
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(Reuters) — Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing is planning to take on U.S. rival Uber in some of Latin America’s fastest-growing markets, recruiting managers in Chile, Peru and Colombia, according to job postings and a company official.Didi has moved senior executives from China to lead its expansion in markets like Chile and Peru, and began in recent weeks advertising for driver operations, crisis management, marketing and business development personnel in those countries, an analysis of LinkedIn postings show.Didi’s widening expansion, if successful, could make for a bumpier ride for San Francisco-based Uber Technologies Inc in Latin America, one of its fastest growth regions, as it gets ready to go public as soon as later this year.The two firms are already battling in Brazil, where Didi bought local start-up 99 in January last year, and Mexico, where the Chinese firm lured drivers with higher pay and bonuses for signing up other drivers and passengers.Didi is China’s dominant ride-hailing firm and is backed by investors including Japan’s SoftBank Group.In 2016, Didi bought Uber’s local Chinese operations following a bruising two-year battle for domination in China.
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And according to a recent tweet by First Round Capital's Josh Kopelman, Notion is one of the most sought after investments in Silicon Valley.Ivan Zhao confirmed with Business Insider that he receives multiple calls each day from hopeful venture capitalists, and at Notion's old office, some VCs would literally come knocking on the door.Zhao says he's not "anti-VC," but when software revenues are paying the bills, he's left to question, "how does extra capital help us grow?"We still haven't updated our office address from the old one," Notion CEO Ivan Zhao told Business Insider in a recent interview."We're thinking of switching to a PO Box."But for now, Zhao and his 11-person team are trying to keep more of a "low profile" in their undisclosed, San Francisco headquarters and "focusing on product," he says.
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That means the genetic data you share with a testing company — which may include sensitive health information like your risk of cancer — could one day be matched with your name by an unintended party.While some at-home DNA tests like 23andMe have privacy protocols to protect against this, they're not a guarantee, experts say.One key issue is the ability for users to upload their private DNA data to publicly-accessible genetic databases like the one used in the Golden State Killer case.Everything from your ancestry to your risk of cancer to information about allergies and predisposition to Alzheimer's are often included in a genetic test report.The most prolific genetic testing companies take thorough steps to protect your privacy, such as scraping personal identifiers like your name from your genetic code before they sell that data to researchers or drug companies.For at least the past decade, researchers have demonstrated that by cross-referencing anonymous DNA data with datasets that include personal information, such voter or census rolls, they can correctly "re-identify" significant portions of participants.
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Revised proposals attempt to address worries over Manifest v3 API changesGoogle has proposed changes to its Chrome Extension renovation plan that answer some but not all of the concerns its Manifest v3 technical specification.The initial changes, announced in October last year, set off alarm bells last month when a critical mass of Chrome plugin developers finally realized what Google intended.The Manifest v3 changes represent an attempt to address real issues for users of the Chrome browser, specifically the security and performance implications of third-party code that has access to sensitive data.The Manifest v3 specification would break content and ad blockers, privacy extensions, and a host of other browser add-on code that relies on the ability to intercept requested web content before it gets rendered in the browser.The trouble is that as initially outlined, declarativeNetRequest is far too limited to accommodate current use cases.
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Uncle Sam's prosecutors announced this week that a federal district court in the Lone Star state sent 42-year-old Eric McGinnis down for eight years for possessing an unregistered short barrel rifle and possessing ammunition while subject to an active protective order.His trial by jury took just two days.Back in 2015, McGinnis was served with the order after having a violent altercation with his girlfriend.Part of that order barred McGinnis from owning a firearm or ammunition for a period of two years.The next year, McGinnis attempted to purchase pieces for a semiautomatic rifle but was turned down following a background check and was visited by the bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms with a reminder of the order.Undeterred, McGinnis then purchased a 3D printer and obtained blueprints for the parts he was unable to legally purchase.
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On Feb 15 at 10 p.m. EDT (Feb. 16 at 0300 UTC), the Joint Typhoon Warning Center or JTWC noted that Gelena had already become subtropical.JTWC issued their final warning on Gelena.At that time, the storm had maximum sustained winds near 40 knots (46 mph/74 kph).It was centered near 29.8 degrees south latitude and 89.3 degrees east longitude.However, post-tropical cyclones can continue carrying heavy rains and high winds.Unlike tropical cyclones, subtropical cyclones derive a significant proportion of their energy from baroclinic sources (atmospheric pressure), and are generally cold-core in the upper troposphere, often being associated with an upper-level low pressure area or an elongated area or trough of low pressure.
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It looks like the $500 or so inside needs, no wants, to be spent, and there are two smartphones vying for your attention around this price — the OnePlus 6T and Honor View 20.You have probably heard these two described as premium midrange smartphones or “flagship killers,” with the reasonable price being a highlight.We wanted to see how the two phones stacked up against each other in the real world, so took the pair along on a trip to Paris, Nice, and Cannes in France, with a stop in Monaco as well.The Honor View 20 is considerably more complex, with additional stills modes including both portrait and aperture, along with night mode on the main viewfinder screen, and even more modes when you open the More menu.It’s stable and well laid out though, and didn’t frustrate despite the laundry list of features.It’s not often we get such drastically different results from cameras on devices that cost around the same amount of money.
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on Thursday night, actor Ben Affleck apparently retired from his role as Batman in the DC feature films, and Kimmel hosted a retirement ceremony for the role."I tried to direct a version of it, and worked with a really good screenwriter, but just couldn't come up with a version of (it), couldn't crack it," said Affleck, speaking of the 2021 feature titled The Batman and directed by Matt Reeves."And so I thought it was time to let someone else take a shot at it.They've got some really good people, so."Kimmel sidekick Guillermo Rodriguez came out dressed as Robin, carrying a Batman cape and cowl emblazoned with New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's No.12 for Affleck's Boston fandom.
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China
Alibaba affiliate and Alipay parent Ant Financial’s acquisition of London-based payments and currency exchange company WorldFirst marks Ant Financial’s first big move in the UK.“Alipay and WorldFirst’s capabilities and international footprints are highly complementary,” Ant Financial said in a statement shared with TechNode, adding that the tie-up will add WorldFirst’s international online payments and virtual account products to Alipay’s existing technology solutions.Ant Financial expects to further expand its customer base through the acquisition of the UK payments firm, especially in the area of cross border e-commerce.Ant Financial did not disclose the size of the acquisition, however, British broadcaster Sky News reported in December that the acquisition was likely to worth about $700 million.WorldFirst, founded in 2004, has years of experience working with Chinese businesses that trade globally.The company has been taking steps to become one of the first foreign companies to be granted a license to operate in China’s fintech sector.
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China
Indonesian technology and financial services Finmas has launched its standalone mobile app.It’s designed to provide easy access to affordable and secure credit for underserved consumers as well as micro, small and medium-sized enterprises across Indonesia that need access to reliable and trusted financing options.The peer-to-peer lending platform is a collaborative venture between Hong Kong-based financial services startup Oriente and Indonesian conglomerate Sinar Mas.Finmas launched the beta of its mobile app a few months ago.The app “enables consumers to apply for a cash loan whenever they need access to credit for tuition fees, household expenses, specific consumer goods, emergencies, or to start and grow their small businesses,” the company said in a statement.Finmas targets people who have little to no access to traditional financial services like bank accounts as well as credit rating and history.
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