Alex Blair

Alex Blair

Followers 44
Following 33
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Opting for a pedal-assisted electric bike doesn't mean missing out on a fantastic workout.
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Is 5G the future of mobile networking or an expensive marketing gimmick?
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We finally know how much the PlayStation 5 will cost when it'll launch.
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Apple made an American Sign Language translation of its “Time Flies” event available on its website on Tuesday (via AppleInsider). There are two screens in the ASL-translated event replay — the left one shows the event video, while the one on the right shows someone translating what’s being said in ASL. Apple is already well-known for its accessibility features in its products. iOS 14, the company’s next major iPhone update, gives users some significant improvements. It can alert you when your iPhone picks up certain sounds such as a dog’s bark, for example. Another new feature lets you double- or triple-tap the back of your phone to perform a custom task. And if you’re using sign language while on a group FaceTime call, iOS 14 can... Continue reading…
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Daimler AG and its sub-brand Mercedes-Benz USA are to pay a $1.5 billion bill over a case in which Californian authorities alleged the automaker had cheated on emissions tests. The US Department of Justice (DoJ), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the California attorney general’s office have said that Daimler used “defeat device software” to get around emissions testing and provide more favorable scores than was realistic, CBS News reports. Mercedes-Benz reportedly sold over 250,00 cars and vans between 2009 and 2016 that used the nefarious devices and didn’t meet state or federal emissions standards. [Read: Are EVs too expensive? Here… This story continues at The Next Web
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The South China Morning Post reported the company is looking to sell the app without the algorithm that drives its content to users.
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Google was at least considering a more colorful version of its budget Android phone.
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Late-stage Chinese startups bank serious money, and India’s Reliance Retail bags US$1 billion from Silver Lake.
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The ~$150 watch could slot in between BBK's other wearables from Oppo and Realme.
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The Philips Hue starter kit lets you transform the mood of your living room, and this weekend it's down to a terrific price.
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Did you know Warren Knight, the author of this piece, is speaking at TNW2020 this year? Check out their session on ‘What’s next for the digital-first mindset?’ here. What do bees have in common with teams in the digital workplace? When I’m talking to leaders in business, it’s often helpful to use analogies to help them relate to workplace challenges and look at things from an alternative angle. And since moving to the countryside a couple of years ago, I’ve found observing my 50,000 bees particularly thought-provoking. Watching bees is a humbling experience. To start with, their movements may seem and… This story continues at The Next Web
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Allianz's chief economic adviser said:"The fear of missing out on an unceasing equity rally has increasingly been expressed through call options."
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Motorola One 5G is the newest 5G-toting smartphone released by Motorola in a wave of devices meant to capture all segments, low to high. This is a midrange smartphone with four cameras at its back and a pair of lenses up front peeking out through a pair of holes in the device’s display. The Motorola One 5G has a 6.7-inch … Continue reading
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In May, a Wisconsin health care agency, Tenderness Health Care, posted a job ad on Facebook looking for personal care workers. According to Facebook’s “Why am I seeing this ad” pop-up, when the agency purchased the ad, it asked Facebook to not show it to anyone over 54 years of age. And they asked Facebook to show it specifically to people who have “African American multicultural affinity.” Facebook, apparently, complied. The problem? Federal law prohibits employers from discriminating on the basis of age and race, including in advertising open jobs. When The Markup brought the ad to Facebook’s attention, the… This story continues at The Next Web
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Forty-one percent of those answering a Telecoms.com survey said the new technology has either met or exceeded their expectations.
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A new estimate suggests the Milky Way contains more free-floating planets than stars.
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Coronavirus has changed everything. Make sense of it all with the Waugh Zone, our evening politics briefing. Sign up now.The government has performed its third policy U-turn in little more than a week – this time on whether pupils should wear face masks in English schools after they reopen next week.HuffPost UK understands that face coverings will be mandatory from September 1 in secondary schools in areas of England that are under lockdown restrictions and that they will be discretionary in other areas.A government source stressed that Public Health England guidance for schools had been based on masks not being needed as pupils in different year groups would not mix. The move was later confirmed by the Department for Education.But the change in WHO guidance for young people over 11 had prompted the change for “communal” areas such as corridors where children may have no choice but to come close to other years.They said: “It’s an optional extra for most areas. If heads want to do it, that’s ok. If it provides an extra layer of reassurance, and adds to the already rising parental confidence, then that’s good. Parents can rest assured the existing measures were already doing their job.”The change in guidance comes after Scotland confirmed secondary schools north of the border would get “obligatory guidance” for pupils to wear face coverings in corridors and communal areas to stop the spread of coronavirus.Elsewhere, London mayor Sadiq Khan was said to be “moving towards” students in the capital wearing face coverings when they cannot socially distance; Wales announced a review of the country’s stance; and the Oasis academy chain of 52 schools said it would give masks to pupils to wear between lessons.While it has largely been welcomed, Labour described it as a “half baked U-turn”, arguing that masks should have been made compulsory in communal areas and that the buck had been passed back to schools.Boris Johnson and other ministers had spent the week so far resisting pressure to follow suit and encourage the use of masks in English schools. Earlier in the day, Johnson told reporters: “On the issue of whether or not to wear masks in some contexts – you know, we’ll look at the changing medical evidence as we go on.“If we need to change the advice then of course we will.”On a visit to a school as recently as Monday, England’s education secretary Gavin Williamson told the media that he would not be following Scotland’s lead.“We’re not in a position where we are suggesting [masks] because we think there is a system of controls that are in place in all schools for children to be able to return safely and for staff to be able to return safely,” he said. Schools minister Nick Gibb had also said masks were “not necessary” for staff and pupils when schools in England reopen, so long as they put in place the hygiene measures outlined in government guidance in early July.He was backed by child health professor Calum Semple, who sits on the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage). Semple said the evidence for wearing masks in school was “fairly weak”.But announcing the change in advice on Tuesday, Williamson said: “Our priority is to get children back to school safely. At each stage we have listened to the latest medical and scientific advice.“We have therefore decided to follow the World Health Organisation’s new advice. In local lockdown areas children in year 7 and above should wear face coverings in communal spaces.“Outside of local lockdown areas face coverings won’t be required in schools, though schools will have the flexibility to introduce measures if they believe it is right in their specific circumstances.“I hope these steps will provide parents, pupils and teachers with further reassurance.”It is yet another instance of Boris Johnson’s government abruptly changing its mind on a major policy during the coronavirus pandemic.Last week alone, minister U-turned on A-level results – allowing teachers’ grades to be used instead of those calculated by a discredited algorithm – and evicting renters who have built up arrears during the pandemic, who will now get a four-week stay of execution.Related... Why Face Masks In Schools Could Be Boris Johnson's Next U-Turn What Parents Need To Know About Face Coverings For Kids England And Scotland At Odds Over Face Masks In Schools
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Snowflake has filed papers to go public, setting the stage for one of the most anticipated IPOs in tech. Snowflake, a dominant player in cloud data warehousing which is valued at $12.4 billion, plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "SNOW." The company reported that its revenue jumped from $97 million in 2019 to $264.7 million in 2020. But its losses ballooned from $178 million to $348.5 million in the same period. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories Snowflake, the $12.4 billion cloud data warehousing startup, is going public. The hot startup on Monday filed initial IPO papers with the Securities and Exchange Commission, setting the stage for one of the most anticipated public trading debuts in the tech world. Snowflake said it plans to raise $100 million in the filing, a figure which is typically considered a placeholder and could be updated later. The Silicon Valley tech company said it will list on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol SNOW.  Snowflake emerged as one of the strangest players in cloud data warehousing which became a hot market with the rapid growth of the cloud, the hot enterprise trend in which businesses set up networks on web-based platforms. Snowflake said its revenue jumped from $97 million in 2019 to $264.7 million in 2020. But its losses ballooned from $178 million to $348.5 million in the same period. The company was reportedly aiming for a valuation of as high as $20 billion. Snowflake just raised $479 million in February at a $12.4 billion valuation. In total, Snowflake has raised $1.4 billion from investors including Sequoia and ICONIQ Capital. Snowflake said it has about 3,100 customers, including 56 clients that contributed about $1 million in a 12-month period. Got a tip about Snowflake or another tech company? Contact this reporter via email at [email protected], message him on Twitter @benpimentel or send him a secure message through Signal at (510) 731-8429. You can also contact Business Insider securely via SecureDrop. Claim your 20% discount on an annual subscription to BI Prime by clicking here. SEE ALSO: Tech salaries in Texas revealed: How much IBM, Google, Microsoft, Oracle, Cisco, SAP, and Dell pay developers, engineers, consultants, and others SEE ALSO: Here's why $12.4 billion cloud startup Snowflake's reported IPO plans could make it 'the blockbuster enterprise listing for 2020' SEE ALSO: Tech sales and marketing salaries revealed: How much enterprise giants IBM, Oracle, Dell, Cisco, and VMware pay sales reps, managers, and consultants Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Swayze Valentine is the only female treating fighters' cuts and bruises inside the UFC octagon
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Microsoft's largest intern cohort to-date worked remotely as the coronavirus closed down the firm's headquarters in Redmond, Washington.  Four summer interns described how they adjusted — including buying desks to accommodate Microsoft-deliver computer equipment, to receiving the swag and gifts that their teams sent to their doors. Interns also described challenges collaborating virtually with teams they've never met, feeling intimidated by coworkers, understanding different work styles of their colleagues, and replacing water-cooler chats with messaging over Teams and email.  The interns also grappled with their work as George Floyd's murder and Big Tech antitrust hearings to Congress sparked conversations across the country. As the first intern class to experience a completely virtual internship, the cohort gave advice for future interns who might work from home at the pandemic drags on. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. As with all firms, Microsoft's 30-year internship program had a big shake up this year when the coronavirus crisis shuttered its headquarters in Redmond, Washington and the company had to inform its more than 4,000 interns across the country they would be working from home for the summer.  Jose Herrera Sebastian, an Arizona State University student who had sealed his summer plans as a Microsoft intern way back in November, told Business Insider that he had been hyper-prepared for his months-away internship months.  "I planned out my routes to go to the office and the grocery stores," said he said. Those well-laid plans did not, unfortunately, come in handy.  The company sent out frequent emails to students as it monitored the situation. In February, it sent out an email about housing. Then, shortly after, it sent out another email assuring students that the internship would not be cancelled. Finally, the company announced that the program would be virtual for its duration, including with a public blog post on April 6th. "It was sort of a bummer," said Herrera Sebastian, who interned with Microsoft's chat app, Teams. "But then I was like, my main focus was I'm still able to work with the team." While the inability to have an in-person experience was disappointing, the seriousness of the coronavirus crisis trumped all individual concerns.  "It's just better to make everything online because there are people out here with health issues and it's really selfish wanting to force everywhere to open just because you want the experience," MS Sales intern Zikora Anyaoku said.  Business Insider chatted with Herrera Sebastian, Anyaoku, and two other students who were part of Microsoft's first-ever totally virtual internship about their experience. Here's what they told us: On adjusting to working from home: To help its intern class work from home, Microsoft shipped a computer, monitor, laptop, and keyboard to students, and walked them through accessing the company's virtual private networks.  Interns, meanwhile, got to work setting up their makeshift offices. Herrera Sebastian, who was living in an apartment in Phoenix, bought an L-shaped desk from Walmart and snatched his brother's old office chair. Connor Richards, a cloud and AI intern, replaced the small desk provided by his student apartment with a much bigger workspace before the internship started. The company sent the interns copious amounts of swag, too, though its care packages varied between teams. Marketing intern Eileen Toh, for example, received a paint set and bottle of wine for a paint-and-sip activity. Anyaoku received a hoodie and a couple shirts. Herrera Sebastian got a giftbag of trail mix, hot cocoa, and candy, as well as Surface headphones.  "This is the most Amazon packages I think I've ever received in a year," Herrera Sebastian said. Still, even new gear couldn't make up for the fact that the interns, like everyone else, were trapped in place because of the pandemic.  "For school and for work, you're used to going into a separate environment for being productive," Richards said. "It's hard to get that work-life balance when you don't have any sort of separation or boundary." Anyaoku, an international student from Nigeria at the University of Maryland, had to move into a hotel during the last leg of her internship after her apartment lease ended.  "It was difficult coping during the pandemic alone while having an internship," she said. Away from her family in Nigeria, Anyaoku worried about how she was going to navigate her first-ever internship while it was virtual. But after two weeks, her project work picked up and she became closer to her colleagues. "Everything started to fall in place," she said. "My team members were eager to help. I would say I was lucky." Trying to forge bonds, virtually: Like Anyaoku, the other interns weren't quite sure how they were going to network or collaborate virtually with teams they would never meet in person, either.  "As an intern you're already pretty shy, it's kind of hard to reach out to full-time employees," Richards said. "Virtually, that's even harder." Still, Microsoft did its best to accommodate its interns, according to Richards and the others.  For example, Toh said her manager asked about her work style and was taught her teammates' work styles, too. Some preferred email, while others preferred messaging on Teams. This helped Toh understand how to best talk to her colleagues for time-sensitive questions and to ask for advice. Her team also scheduled meetings throughout the week that didn't revolve around work. Sometimes kids or dogs would hop onto the screen, and that helped her get to know her colleagues better, too.  "It basically kind of replaced talking to someone in the hallway," Toh said. In addition to how individual teams handled it, Microsoft also held company-wide virtual Q&As with company vice presidents, and organized small groups of interns to play Pictionary and get to know each other. During the company's annual Intern Day in July, students got to watch performances from Chance the Rapper and Trevor Noah. "They actually made such a big effort," Anyaoku said.  How their work adapted to current events: This has been a truly historic year. Not only has a raging pandemic send the economy into a tailspin, but people across the country hit the streets to march for the Black Live Matters movement, while a particularly heated presidential election approaches.  Toh joined Microsoft's marketing team around the time protests erupted across the country over George Floyd's death. She said that her team often reflected on how to make its marketing campaigns more inclusive. Toh's colleagues shelled out some advice for creating inclusive campaigns while collaborating with colleagues. "I should always want to make it more uncomfortable — to ask those questions," Toh said, referring to bringing up topics about fair representation and accessibility. "What can we do personally? What can I do personally?" Before the pandemic, Herrera Sebastian, who worked with Microsoft Teams, didn't really understand the product well. "I was like, alright, it's another messaging service," Herrera Sebastian said. "And then work from home started coming out and I realized, 'Okay, there's more.'" The coronavirus pandemic spurred the chat app to grow by 75 million daily active users in April, a 70% growth from March. During the antitrust hearings, when Congress confronted CEOs from Apple, Google, Amazon, and Facebook, Richards said that he spent some time reflecting on the issue. "It's kind of bad to be crushing out the small competition," he said. "More companies should be given a chance to innovate and show their product, and that just leads to better things for everybody." Advice for future interns working from home: All interns said the hardest part of the remote internship was finding ways to have light, casual conversations with colleagues and finding ways to network without scheduling formal one-on-ones. "Some advice I got from my manager was: It's all right to just cold-message someone and be like, 'Hey, are you free at this time?'" Herrera Sebastian said. "Because for the most part, everyone's just sitting around with an empty inbox." Toh said she became more proactive about reaching out to colleagues on Microsoft Teams and talked to her manager frequently. She encourages other, future remote interns to try "over-communicating" as well: "Just telling them how are you doing with your project" is a good way to start conversations and make sure you're on track.  Microsoft declined to participate in this story.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Why American sunscreens may not be protecting you as much as European sunscreens
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You now have options if the true wireless earbuds were previously too plain.
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Despite a few hiccups, Google’s Pixel Buds might just be my favorite true wireless earbuds on the market. The combination of clever, comfortable design with Google‘s unmatched assistant integration makes them a joy to use. But as with anything, they could be improved, and an update from Google today seeks to do just that. Google is adding a plethora of features to the Pixel Buds today that significantly expand their functionality. The most notable for many will likely be the new bass boost EQ, which should make the bass heads out there happy; this is accessible right from the device’s… This story continues at The Next WebOr just read more coverage about: Google
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Today we’re taking a look at a set of renderings of the iPhone 12, the smallest version of the next iPhone. This newest version of Apple’s hero phone was rendered in a number of wild, vibrant colors, not unlike the iPhone 11, or the iPhone XR, or even the iPhone 5c. Could an injection of monotone single-color brightness, the sort … Continue reading
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Larry Ellison hailed as 'terrific guy' as Big Red stays shtum on its intentions US president Donald Trump has signaled his support of Oracle as a buyer for contentions made-in-China social media app TikTok.…
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Will Houston's small-ball approach be enough to best a rebuilt Oklahoma City? Get a Rockets vs Thunder live stream to watch the 2020 NBA playoffs to find out.
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MediaTek has announced Dimensity 800U chipset that aims to bring 5G to more affordable mid-range devices.
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These Bose and Sony back-to-school deals are sure to brighten up your listening experience no matter what your plans are.
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The quality of AI-generated deepfake videos has improved rapidly over the past few years – raising concerns around the potential for electoral interference and criminal activity.  Nina Schick, author of new book "Deep Fakes and the Infopocalypse", spoke to Business Insider about Donald Trump, COVID-19, and the coming disinformation crisis.   Written in just a few months, Schick's book outlines how we've only just begun to scratch the surface of dodgy information online. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Deepfake video technology is advancing more rapidly than many would have believed possible just a few years ago. From politics to porn, experts around the world have warned of the threats posed by increasingly sophisticated AI-generated and manipulated videos – with fears they could mark an eerie new chapter in the battle against disinformation. One author sounding the alarm is Nina Schick, a policy expert who only started writing her new book, "Deep Fakes and the Coming Infopocalypse", in February. "I had already put out a few mainstream articles on the topic," Schick told Business Insider. "Then suddenly the publisher got in touch and said: 'You should write a book about this. Can you do it in six weeks?'" A former executive at the now-defunct Open Europe, a think tank focusing the UK's relationship with the EU, and later an adviser to Emmanuel Macron on his 2017 presidential campaign, Schick has seen the realities of electoral interference up close. "Even though I wrote it very quickly, these ideas had been bouncing around in my head for almost a decade." As COVID-19 forced countries around the world into lockdown – while spurring a wave of false information online – Schick says she couldn't help but notice a "perfect case study unfolding" before her eyes. "Deep Fakes" reads at points like it could have been written in the past week, with a chapter on COVID-19, and a damning account of Donald Trump's "injecting disinfectant" gaffe. Touching on everything from fake celebrity porn, through to the Trump campaign feed and the Russian annexation of Crimea, Schick's page-turner outlines how we've only just begun to scratch the surface of dodgy information online. "Misinformation campaigns have a long history, and battling for a political narrative is not a new thing," Schick explains. "But the boundaries have been completely upended by the new features of our information ecosystem. It's become that much easier for bad actors to infiltrate the conversation." With ever more sophisticated deepfakes on the horizon, a number of initiatives have sprung up to try and curb the problem. In 2019, tech giants like Facebook and Google sponsored a $500,000 prize for deepfake detection tools, and a number of smaller firms are designing software to combat the problem. With all this in mind, is the chronicler of the infopocalypse optimistic about the future? "Oh, I'm terrified," Schick laughs. "I think it's going to get a lot worse before it gets better," she adds. "But as the social and political realities begin to dawn on our representatives, I think we'll be able to get on top of it again. "It just might take a few years."Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: The rise and fall of Donald Trump's $365 million airline
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Kirsch's first pixel image was 176 by 176 pixels
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Facebook's Portal sale knocks $100 price off the Gen 1 model, which is a considerably saving.
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