Google’s Search and AI Chief Joins Apple

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Apple’s A.I. efforts have received a huge boost as it has hired Google’s chief of search and artificial intelligence, John Giannandrea. Over at Apple, Giannandrea will be leading Apple’s “machine learning and A.I. strategy” and will be reporting directly to Tim Cook. Continue reading
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Facebook Issues a Statement Regarding Cambridge Analytica Controversy As WhatsApp Co-founder Joins the Delete Facebook Campaign

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The whole Cambridge Analytica fiasco has led to Facebook being the subject of many potential regulatory investigations and users worried about the social network’s data sharing practices. There’s also a movement going on over on Twitter with the #deletefacebook hashtag encouraging users to delete their Facebook profile for good. Continue reading
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#DeleteFacebook movement gains traction as WhatsApp cofounder joins in

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Facebook is under fire for its data sharing practices, with Cambridge Analytica having missed user data of as many as 50 million Facebook users. Now, in response to that controversy, many users are joining the #DeleteFacebook movement, including one who once netted hefty payday from the social media giant…

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New York joins Massachusetts investigation of Facebook’s data use

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All eyes are on Facebook as more and more information rolls out regarding Cambridge Analytica, its involvement in recent elections and forums and how it came to obtain 50 million Facebook users' profile information. Now, New York Attorney General Eri…
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California to introduce ‘right to repair’ bill, joins 17 other states in consumer initiative

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California on Wednesday became the latest state to ready so-called "right to repair" legislation that would require companies like Apple to provide consumers and third-party repair outlets access to repair information, diagnostic equipment and parts.
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GreenWaves Technologies joins the race for machine learning at the edge

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The GAP8 processor block diagram for those of y’all who like block diagrams!

A few weeks back, I wrote about the need for machine learning at the edge and what big chip firms are doing to address the challenge. Even as Intel, ARM, and others invest in new architectures, startups are also attempting to innovate with new platforms.

GreenWaves Technologies, based in France, is one such company. It has built a machine learning chip that offers multiple cores and low-power machine learning at the edge. The chip is called the GAP8 application processor. GreenWaves CEO Loic Lietar says the GAP8 processor can offer always-on face detection with a few milliwatts of power, indoor people counting with years of battery life, and sub-$ 15 machine vision or voice control for consumer applications.

But what’s really fascinating about GreenWaves is that it has built this chip with so little in funding. The company has raised 3.1 million euros ($ 3.8 million) so far, much less than a traditional semiconductor startup. And yet it’s gotten all the way to producing chips based on its design, with a development board coming in April. The reason GreenWaves could do so much with so little is because it’s building on a new open-source hardware architecture called RISC-V.

RISC-V was created eight years ago as a project at UC Berkeley aimed at building low-power chips that use minimal instruction sets. An instruction set governs how software talks to the actual computing elements on the chip, and anyone can use it to build their own designs. By comparison, Intel keeps its x86 instruction set to itself (and AMD), while the instruction sets of ARM and MIPS are licensed out for millions of dollars. (For more on this dynamic, here’s a good article.)

GreenWaves’ Lietar says the cost of building a new chip using ARM’s instruction set would start with a $ 15 million license and escalate from there. But with RISC-V his engineers could simply download the code and get going. Of course, to design a chip at this level still requires sophisticated engineers experienced in building processors. However, GreenWave’s founders hail from ST Microelectronics and have lots of chip design experience.

I’m excited by GreenWaves’ chips, but I’m even more excited that in an era when we are going to need different types of processors designed for low-power, edge computing jobs, there’s potentially a way to innovate in silicon at a lower cost. Because in my opinion, silicon is where your innovation starts. The capability has to be there in hardware before you can do new things with software.

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Sony TV’s Angélica Guerra joins Apple as head of Latin American programming

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Apple officially confirmed it’d recruited Sony TV’s Angélica Guerra as a head of Latin American programming for Apple Worldwide Video, its original video content production arm…. Read the rest of this post here


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The Nokia 1 joins Google’s Android Go effort with removable Xpress-on covers

Google has been trying to re-engineer Android so it works better on lower-end devices. While Google has been attempting this for nearly four years with its Android One effort, the search giant rebranded with an Android Oreo “Go edition” for low-end phones back in December. Android Go is designed to run better on phones with 512MB or 1GB of RAM, thanks to OS tweaks and “Go” versions of popular Google apps.

This week at Mobile World Congress, we’re starting to see the first Android Go handsets. The Nokia 1 is one of the first, and it’s designed to be an entry-level smartphone for a number of emerging markets. The Nokia 1 specs are minimal, and it runs on a 1.1GHz MediaTek processor, 1GB of RAM, and just 8GB of storage. It’s a small and…

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Visiture Joins Shopify Plus Technology Partner Program

Visiture, a full-service marketing agency built for eCommerce merchants, announced Monday its acceptance into the Shopify Plus Technology Partner Program, a selective and vetted list of industry leading technology partners across a wide variety of disciplines.

As a Shopify-chosen partner, Visiture will be able to offer its organic marketing and paid digital advertising to Shopify Plus merchants, helping eCommerce brands acquire more customers and increase conversion rates from their online stores.

“Visiture has a strong connection with Shopify Plus – we both provide valued services eCommerce merchants need for growing their businesses,” said Ronald Dod, CMO and co-founder of Visiture. “One of the things we excel at is helping our clients focus on their business without worrying about the technical aspects of marketing their business online and their online storefront. We’re very excited for the opportunity to offer that to Shopify Plus merchants.”

“We are honored to be recognized as a technology partner in the Shopify Plus program,” said Brian Cohen, CEO and Co-Founder of Visiture. “We’re proud to be working with Shopify and look forward to partnering with Shopify Plus merchants as contributors to their success.”

If you’re not familiar, Shopify Plus focuses on emerging brands and high-volume businesses, providing a commerce platform for the next-generation of retail. From mobile ready stores, to innovative pop-up experiences, to direct-to- consumer experimentation, the Shopify Plus platform is enabling the creation and innovation of today’s modern, global merchant, while providing world-class scalability, reliability and flexibility.

The Shopify Plus Partner Program will develop and grow the partner ecosystem for Shopify Plus merchants, allowing them instant access to innovative agencies, experts and technology partners.

To learn more, click here.

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Telecom-Focused Cryptocurrency Telcoin Joins GSMA as Stage is Set for Major Innovation

It’s one of the hidden gems of cryptocurrency, if you ask any crypto geniuses in-the-know.

Telcoin — or TEL — announced this week that the company is now officially a member of the GSMA , “joining nearly 800 operators and more than 300 companies in the mobile ecosystem,” a tweet from the Telcoin team explains.

“Telcoin is the first telecom-focused cryptocurrency, distributed in partnership with GSMA network operators to mobile subscribers globally,” Telcoin’s page on the GSMA site elucidates. “Our central mission is financial inclusion – empowering a broad spectrum of mobile users with expanded access to the global financial system of the future. With or without a bank account, Telcoin can be used by anyone – tech-savvy smartphone users, unbanked feature phone users, and the rapidly growing middle segment of underbanked smartphone users alike.”

Following it’s successful ICO in January, the Telcoin team has reaffirmed its commitment to an ambitious roadmap for 2018 and beyond — a mission that could forever alter the mobile fintech landscape.

“By combining the reach of mobile networks and the fast, borderless nature of blockchain technology, we provide an easy and secure gateway to cryptocurrency adoption on any mobile device,” the GSMA profile of Telcoin clarifies.

Telcoin Pte. Ltd. is based in Singapore with a team operating out of Tokyo, Japan.

To learn more about Telcoin and its stated plans for “financial inclusion in a mobile world,” click here.

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