Amazon HQ2 process highlights the company’s data obsession

Posted by & filed under Amazon, Ethical Issues.

Amazon’s search for a second headquarters was never just about finding a new home. Throughout the process, Amazon skillfully obtained data from 238 cities and metro areas in North America for free, including proprietary information about real estate sites under development, details about their talent pool, local labor cost and what incentives cities and states were willing… Read more »

IMF’s Lagarde says central banks could issue digital money

Posted by & filed under Crypto currency.

International Monetary Fund head Christine Lagarde said central banks around the world should consider issuing digital currency. Speaking in Singapore, Ms Lagarde said this could make digital currency transactions safer. Source: BBC Technology News Date: November 15th, 2018 Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/business-46203869 Discussion 1) How much do you know about how cryptocurrencies, of which Bitcoin is just one example?  Why… Read more »

StatsCan’s plan to harvest private banking info on hold, pending investigation

Posted by & filed under Privacy.

The country’s chief statistician says his agency’s controversial plan to harvest individuals’ banking information is on hold until the privacy commissioner completes an investigation into widespread concerns about the project. Statistics Canada recently caught nine financial institutions off-guard by asking them to share the private banking information of Canadians in 500,000 dwellings across the country…. Read more »

How will Facebook keep people on Facebook? By helping them fall in love

Posted by & filed under App Economy, FaceBook.

For those who’ve been paying attention, Facebook’s growth appears to be slowing. It’s not clear why, but one theory is that we’re reaching a saturation point, particularly in North America. Basically, everyone has already signed up for an account. Facebook is literally running out of new people to bring aboard. This is a problem (for Facebook,… Read more »

The taxi wars

Posted by & filed under App Economy, innovation.

Who is going to decide how we travel around our cities – Californian tech giants or local transport businesses? On Tech Tent we hear from the UK firm helping local taxi operators take the fight to Uber and from an American scooter firm trying to change the law in Britain. I took a trip to… Read more »

The low-code revolution: Lightning App Cookbook

Posted by & filed under App Economy, Careers.

Companies like Mendix (https://www.mendix.com/) and Salesforce are saying that this is the start of a “low-code revolution”, where business people can build applications without knowing much, if any, code at all. Source: Salesforce Date: November 9th, 2018 Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvG171ltKjw Discussion 1) Why are we now at a point where low-code programming is an option? 2) How does a… Read more »

Crop picking robot

Posted by & filed under Artificial intelligence, IT Trends, robotics.

The SWEEPER robot is the first sweet pepper harvesting robot in the world demonstrated in a commercial greenhouse. It is designed to operate in a single stem row cropping system, with a crop having non-clustered fruits and little leaf occlusion. Source: YouTube Date: November 9th, 2018 Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DUgjFaYyecE Discussion 1) Who looses their job because of this robot,… Read more »

Bitcoin mining could cancel out climate change efforts, scientists say

Posted by & filed under bitcoin, Consumer Technology, Crypto currency, Data center.

The Hut 8 bitcoin mine in Medicine Hat, Alta., uses as much electricity on a typical day as the entire city of 60,000, and most of the electricity is produced by fossil fuels. Source: CBC News Date: November 2nd, 2018 Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/bitcoin-mining-climate-change-1.4883647 Discussion 1) Do you understand what “bitcoin mining” is?  If not, I have an article here:  https://missoulacurrent.com/opinion/2018/03/firth-bitcoin-investment/… Read more »

Facebook promised to fix political ads on its platform. It hasn’t

Posted by & filed under Automation, election, Ethical Issues, FaceBook.

Facebook and its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, pledged to fix how it handles political and issue ads in the wake of Russian meddling in 2016. But just days before the midterm elections, a key part of Facebook’s effort is broken, and it’s unclear if the company is doing anything to fix it. The company has touted new rules for political… Read more »