Say it with me: Smart speakers don’t have genders

Thanks to the efforts of countless individuals my smart speaker is getting dumber. Some of you can’t seem to figure out whether Alexa is a girl or not, and what it means that she it has a woman’s voice. What we have here is a very complex problem with a really simple solution. Smart speakers aren’t people. That makes it a bit of a shock when I ask Alexa “What’s a bitch?” and it responds with “I’d rather not answer that.” Suddenly an ongoing argument about how people talk to smart speakers is causing it to mix up a pejorative… This story continues at The Next Web …read more Source::… Read More

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50 Cent realizes he’s a Bitcoin millionaire thanks to sales of a 2014 album

Call him the ultimate hodler. After being one of the first musicians to accept Bitcoin all the way back in 2014, Rapper 50 Cent (a.k.a. Curtis Jackson) appears to have accumulated a small fortune in the volatile digital currency. As TMZ first reported, and the man himself seems to have confirmed, 50 Cent left his Bitcoin sales untouched until rediscovering them some time recently. At the time,… Read More …read more Source:: TechCrunch

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San Francisco just appointed a new mayor to a heckling crowd, and everyone is arguing over who is the real puppet for the tech industry

Supervisor Mark Farrell has been voted in as San Francisco’s interim mayor. He replaces acting mayor London Breed, who took over the role following Ed Lee’s sudden death. San Francisco has a new interim mayor — and no one is sure whether to be mad, shocked or just confused. On Tuesday night, the city’s board of supervisors voted to appoint a former venture capital investor from one of its wealthiest neighborhoods as interim mayor. The vote to crown Mark Farrell interim mayor provoked an immediate outcry, the latest flare-up of tensions in city politics over the influence of the tech industry. Farrell replaces London Breed, a San Francisco native who… Read More

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Burger King’s prank net neutrality video shows what happens when customers are charged $26 for faster Whopper service (QSI)

Burger King released a pseudo-educational prank video that shows what would happen if the company repealed “Whopper neutrality,” the Burger King equivalent of net neutrality. In the prank, the company adopted tactics that consumers fear internet service provider will use with the repeal of net neutrality, like throttling internet speeds for certain websites unless customers paid more. Customers were visibly and audibly outraged. This is Burger King’s first public show of support for net neutrality. Fast food chain Burger King released a hilarious prank video on Wednesday that shows what would happen if the restaurant industry mimicked the potential effects of the FCC’s recent repeal of net neutrality. In the… Read More

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Stressing aptitude over achievement, Strive Talent pitches a new way to hire

While unemployment in the U.S. hit a 17 year low and the stock market keeps humming along, there’s a lingering sense that all is still not well in U.S. labor markets. Most jobs require a college degree these days, a proposition that’s becoming increasingly unaffordable even if it is attainable. Many students who graduate are saddled with so much debt that not even a decent salaried… Read More …read more Source:: TechCrunch

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Rick Perry: By exporting fossil fuels, the US is “exporting freedom”

Rick Perry (Credit: Getty/Drew Angerer) In an interview on Fox Business’s “Mornings with Maria” from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Energy Secretary Rick Perry touted the idea that the Trump administration’s energy agenda is spreading “freedom” around the world. “The United States is not just exporting energy, we’re exporting freedom,” Perry said in the interview, referring to exports of fossil fuels like oil and coal. “We’re exporting to our allies in Europe the opportunity to truly have a choice of where do you buy your energy from. That’s freedom. And that kind of freedom is priceless.” If exporting energy means exporting “freedom” to Perry, one wonders why oil-rich authoritarian… Read More

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Tech Moves: Amazon hires top doc; Geir Hansen leaves SVB; Acumatica board adds ex-Microsoft Business Solutions chief

Martin Levine. (Iora Health Photo) Amazon is continuing to bolster its health care game. The company recently hired Dr. Martin Levine, a longtime Seattle doctor and leader of Iora Health‘s Seattle area operations, according to a report by CNBC. The move is another pointer towards the company’s health ambitions. Amazon has hired several high-profile health leaders in the past months and has shown signs of considering everything from distributing prescription drugs online to a health service from its Alexa voice assistant. Levine has served as the Seattle market medical director for Iora for the past three years, according to his LinkedIn profile. He specializes in care for older patients and… Read More

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Geared Up Podcast: The tech behind Amazon Go, Xbox Game Pass ups the ante, and a chance to win an in-car Alexa device

The entryway to Amazon Go, a fully automated convenience store that tracks what shoppers pick up from the shelves. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota) Amazon Go sounds like something straight out of the Jetsons: A fully automated convenience store that tracks what you grab off the shelves. No cashiers, no checkout lines. Plus, Microsoft announced it’s beefing up the Xbox Game Pass with exclusive launch-day titles, potentially a game changer for the service and the console, and Apple finally announces a launch day for the HomePod — minus some of its promised features. All that and more on this week’s episode of Geared Up, our weekly tech and gadget podcast.… Read More

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13 ways other countries are leaving the United States in the dust

Technological and social innovations mean things are changing quickly around the world. The United States is slipping behind other countries in key measures of progress. The US trails other nations in areas such as press freedom, passport strength, internet speed, and cost of education. American politicians often boast that their country is the greatest in the world. But in a lot of ways, the United States is slipping in the world rankings. From the price Americans pay for education to the strength of their passports, there are plenty of ways people from other countries have it better. Read on to see 13 areas where America has some catching up to… Read More

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Burger King Just Made a Commercial About Net Neutrality…Using Whoppers?

Burger King premiered a new Whopper commercial that advocated for net neutrality more than its signature burger. You may have heard about “net neutrality,” especially since the Federal Communications Commission categorized broadband as a public utility during the Obama Administration in 2015. This meant Internet service providers couldn’t create an Internet fast lane by prioritizing certain online content. The FCC repealed net neutrality in late 2017, under FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai, who was appointed to the commission by President Obama, but was made chairman by President Trump. The Burger King commercial, titled “Whopper Neutrality,” explains what could happen without net neutrality. But instead of the Internet, it uses burgers to… Read More

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The latest glucose-sensing smart contact lens still has a long way to go

Scientists have designed a smart contact lens to measure the wearer’s blood sugar without using a needle. So far, the needle-less prototype has only been tested in rabbits — and it’s not clear if it’s even possible to accurately monitor blood sugar using tears. But if it works, it would be a massive upgrade for people with diabetes. The lens is made out of the same transparent, flexible material that’s in some soft contacts on the market. Inside, the researchers embedded electronics including a little LED light and a glucose sensor. If glucose levels rise above a certain level, the continuously lit LED light flickers off to alert the wearer,… Read More

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F5 adds four new senior executives and beats Wall Street earnings expectations

F5 CEO Francois Locoh-Donou (GeekWire Photo / John Cook) After a rough year, F5 Networks got off to a good start Wednesday, reporting earnings that beat Wall Street expectations and announcing the appointment of four new senior executives. Revenue for F5’s first fiscal quarter was $523.2 million, up slightly from $516 million in revenue in last year’s first fiscal quarter. Excluding special items, earnings per share were $2.26, and both of those figures beat financial analyst estimates for the quarter. “This was an execution quarter for us,” said F5 CEO Francois Locoh-Donou on a conference call with analysts following the results. 2017 was a transitional year for the Seattle company,… Read More

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