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From WhatsApp to Alexa : why the ad-free era is over

As we grow wiser to marketing, advertisers are finding new ways and places to plug products We’ve weaned ourselves off banner advertisements, with a fifth of us using ad blockers in our internet browsers, according to research firm eMarketer. So-called “native advertising” online, where advertising is presented in a similar way to editorial, has failed to take off. A US study last year from Sta...

Oracle systematically underpaid thousands of women, lawsuit says

Class action alleges female workers were paid average of $13,000 less per year than men doing similar jobs Thousands of women were systematically underpaid at Oracle, one of Silicon Valley’s largest corporations, according to a new class-action complaint that details claims of pervasive wage discrimination. A lawsuit filed in California on Friday seeks to represent more than 4,200 women and all...

Tesla to cut more than 3,000 jobs because cars 'still too expensive'

Elon Musk says he has no choice but to reduce electric car manufacturer’s headcount Tesla is cutting more than 3,000 jobs, or 7% of its workforce, after experiencing a year its founder, Elon Musk, said was both its most challenging and most successful. The chief executive of the electric car manufacturer told staff on Friday that “the road ahead is very difficult” because its products were not ...

Can a computer be creative? Chips with Everything podcast

In our latest collaboration, Jordan Erica Webber teams up with Ian Sample of the Guardian’s Science Weekly podcast to look at why artwork produced using AI is forcing us to confront how we define creativity In October 2018, the British auction house Christie’s became the first to sell a work of art created by an algorithm. The Portrait of Edmond Belamy was sold for $432,500 (£336,000), which wa...

Oxford places ban on donations and research grants from Huawei

Decision on Chinese telecoms firm comes as national security concerns mount in the west The University of Oxford has placed an indefinite ban on accepting research grants or donations from the Chinese telecoms firm Huawei, which is already facing mounting concerns from several governments about whether it poses a risk to national security. The decision emerged the day after the US prosecutors r...

Facebook removes hundreds of pages 'linked to Russian site'

Social network says it has taken down 289 pages connected to Kremlin-backed news website Facebook has removed hundreds of pages believed to be connected to the Kremlin-backed Sputnik news website for allegedly breaching its rules. The Facebook pages, which were targeted at individuals in former Soviet satellite states, either pretended to be independent news services or had names designed to ap...

Largest collection of breached data ever seen is found

Store of 770m email addresses and passwords discovered after being posted to a hacking forum The largest collection of breached data ever seen has been discovered, comprising of more than 770m email addresses and passwords posted to a popular hacking forum in mid-December. The 87GB data dump was discovered by security researcher Troy Hunt, who runs the Have I Been Pwned breach-notification serv...

Apple chief calls for laws to tackle 'shadow economy' of data firms

Tim Cook seeks competitive advantage over Google and Facebook with privacy push Apple’s chief executive has called for regulation to tackle the “shadow economy” of data brokers – middlemen who trade in the personal data of largely unsuspecting consumers – as the company continues its push to be seen as privacy-positive. Tim Cook, in an op-ed for Time Magazine published on Thursday, said: “one o...

Shantay, you play: the drag queens of gaming

Video games and drag offer potent opportunities to play with identity. Four artists explore personas, avatars and cosplay, taking down trolls on Twitch and the power of Princess Peach Drag in video games is often played for laughs – see 1997’s Final Fantasy VII, in which spiky-haired Cloud Strife dresses as a woman to deceive a gullible, misogynistic mafioso, or Alfred the “cross-dressing freak...

Dances removed from Forza Horizon in wake of Fortnite copyright claims

Playground Games drops ‘Carlton and Floss’ emotes from driving game as Epic faces fourth lawsuit for alleged Fortnite copyright infringement Two dance moves that are the subject of lawsuits in the US have been removed from the driving game Forza Horizon 4 . The moves were among a series of dance “emotes” included in the latest instalment of the Forza Horizon series, after the huge popularity of...

China's Huawei reportedly targeted in US criminal investigation

DoJ said to be in ‘advanced’ stages of inquiry over alleged theft of trade secrets Huawei has stated that a dispute with T-Mobile was settled in 2017 after a report said US authorities had opened a criminal investigation into the Chinese telecommunications company. Related: Huawei faces catastrophe in the technology cold war Continue reading...

I got a phishing email that tried to blackmail me – what should I do?

Pauline received a spam message that looked like a sextortion or webcam scam I got this email today. It says “I hacked your device, because I sent you this message from your account.” It goes on to claim that it has filmed me watching pornography, and demands $698 in bitcoin. Phishing? Pwned? What to do? Pauline This is generally known either as “webcam blackmail” or “sextortion scam” and the e...

Tracking technology to reveal whether food produced legally and sustainably

OpenSC venture, which will track Patagonian toothfish, developed by WWF and BCG Digital A new project that uses technology to track the movements of food through the supply chain will aim to inform consumers whether items such as fish they buy at a restaurant were produced legally and sustainably. The new venture is called OpenSC and uses product QR codes that consumers can scan with a smartpho...

My Time at Portia review – crafting sim reaps slow but sweet rewards

PC; Pathea Games/Team 17 The daily routines of this beautifully designed crafting game are meditative, but the storyline can be laboured As in Stardew Valley or Harvest Moon, in My Time at Portia you arrive fresh-faced in a new town, set to take over the dilapidated business a relative has left to you. In this alternate life you’re a workshop owner, crafting items for the locals, taking on buil...

Video games can turn university graduates into better employees | Matthew Barr

Video games improve communication, adaptibility and critical thinking – just the attributes that employers are looking for In recent years, Boris Johnson has excelled at making ignorant pronouncements and illiterate blunders. From offensive remarks on burqas to reciting Kipling in Myanmar and his ludicrous statements on Brexit , Johnson has perfected the art of getting it wrong. It feels like h...
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