Instagram testing GIF search for Stories

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Instagram is testing a number of new features including the ability to search for GIFs to upload in your stories, according to screenshots obtained by The Next Web. TNW also detailed a number of other new features Instagram appears to be testing: a close friends list to share with only a small group of people, an automatic archiving option for all your stories, hashtag and emoji search options, and the ability to follow hashtags to get top posts and stories on a particular trend. Granted, all of these are just…

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Google faces mass legal action in UK over data snooping

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Google is being taken to court, accused of collecting the personal data of millions of users, in the first mass legal action of its kind in the UK. It focuses on allegations that Google unlawfully harvested information from 5.4 million UK users by bypassing privacy settings on their iPhones. The group taking action – Google You Owe Us – is led by ex-Which director Richard Lloyd. He estimates the users could get as much as “several hundred pounds each”. The case centres on how Google used cookies – small pieces…

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Robot automation will take 800 million jobs by 2030

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Up to 800 million global workers will lose their jobs by 2030 and be replaced by robotic automation, a new report from a consultancy has found. The study of 46 countries and 800 occupations by the McKinsey Global Institute found that up to one-fifth of the global work force will be affected. It said one-third of the workforce in richer nations like Germany and the US may need to retrain for other jobs. Machine operators and food workers will be hit hardest, the report says. Poorer countries that have less…

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Coinbase ordered to give the IRS data on users trading more than $20,000

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Most digital currencies exist in a sort of twilight state just beyond the grasp of federal regulators, but the U.S. tax authority is starting to get savvy to this whole bitcoin thing. On Wednesday, a federal judge in San Francisco ruled that Coinbase must supply the IRS with identifying information on users who had more than $20,000 in annual transactions on its platform between 2013 and 2015. After noticing that the number of tax returns claiming gains from virtual currency didn’t line up with the emerging popularity of digital currencies like…

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Facebook, Google and others join The Trust Project to fight Fake News

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Fake news” and other misinformation, online propaganda, and satirical content people believe is true have filled the web via search engines and social media, and have caused a rift in how people perceive today’s news organizations and the quality of their coverage. A nonpartisan effort called The Trust Project is working to address this situation by helping online users distinguish between reliable journalism and promotional content or misinformation. Today, a key part of that effort – called “Trust Indicators” – are going live on Facebook, offering easy-to-access, transparent information about a news…

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Google Can Tell if Someone is Peeping at Your Phone

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Your days of peeking at someone else’s text conversations on the train might be numbered. At the Neural Information Processing Systems conference in Long Beach, California, next week, Google researchers Hee Jung Ryu and Florian Schroff will present a project they’re calling an electronic screen protector, where a Google Pixel phone uses its front-facing camera and eye-detecting artificial intelligence to detect whether more than one person is looking at the screen. An unlisted, but public video by Ryu shows the software interrupting a Google messaging app to display a camera…

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Flitto’s language data helps machine translation systems get more accurate

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Artificial intelligence-powered translation is becoming an increasingly crowded category, with Google, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook all working on their own services. But tech still isn’t a match for professional human translations and machine-generated results are often hit-and-miss. One online translation service, Flitto, is now focused on providing other companies with the language data they need to train their machine translation programs. Headquartered in Seoul, Flitto launched in 2012 as a translation crowdsourcing platform. It still provides translation services, ranging from a mobile app to professional translators, for about 7.5 million…

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UK drone users to sit safety tests under new law

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Drone users in the UK may have to take safety awareness tests under legislation planned by the government. Drones weighing more than 250g could also be banned from flying near airports, or above 400 ft, in a crackdown on unsafe flying. Police will also be given new powers to seize and ground drones which may have been used in criminal activity. The bill has been welcomed by the pilots’ union, which has warned of near misses involving drones and aircraft. Balpa said there had been 81 incidents so far this…

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Schillinger’s substitute phone helps overcome smartphone addiction

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We’ve all been there: fiddling with your smartphone because it’s there, or reaching for it when you hear a text message notification. Austrian designer Klemens Schillinger created the Substitute Phone as a way to help smartphone addicts cope in its absence. Schillinger says that more and more, phones are becoming an addicting object in our lives. Users constantly play with them, even if they’re not looking for a message or expecting a call, and he was inspired to design “a tool that would help stop this ‘checking’ behaviour.” Schillinger designed…

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People Playing Pokemon Go caused Millions in damages in 148 days in an Indiana County

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For a brief, shining period last summer, Pokémon Go reigned supreme. It brought obsession, joy, and, according to a new paper, injuries and death. This working paper, appropriately and evocatively titled “Death by Pokemon Go,” shows the darker side of the massively popular augmented reality game. Purdue University economists Mara Faccio and John McConnell combed through accident reports from Tippecanoe County, Indiana, in the first 148 days after the game was released in July 2016. In that county alone, the total value from injuries, damage, and the two lives lost…

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