L.A. Times Tech Blog


The business and culture of our digital lives, from the L.A. Times






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Google’s new Stadia service will let you play video games without downloading them

Google made a big leap into interactive entertainment Tuesday, announcing an online video gaming platform that it said represents the future of play. The streaming games service, called Stadia, will enable users to run video games on sophisticated hardware maintained remotely by Google and directly...

Inside YouTube’s struggles to shut down video of the New Zealand shooting

As a grisly video recorded by the alleged perpetrator of Friday’s bloody massacres at two New Zealand mosques played out on YouTube and other social media, Neal Mohan, 3,700 miles away in San Bruno, Calif., had the sinking realization that his company was going to be overmatched — again. Mohan,...

Apple debuts new iPad Air and iPad mini, which work with Apple Pencil stylus

Apple Inc. debuted a new mid-tier iPad with a larger screen and introduced the first iPad mini update since 2015. The announcements Monday come a week before the company rolls out a media and entertainment bundle designed to compete with Netflix Inc. The company debuted a new iPad Air with a 10.5-inch...

Facebook and Google broke down barriers to broadcast media — even for mass killers

The killing of 49 people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, was engineered to be viewed and shared on the world’s largest technology platforms, taking full advantage of Silicon Valley’s laissez-faire approach to content moderation. It began with a racist manifesto uploaded to the document-sharing...

Even plumbers need software: How Glendale's ServiceTitan became a billion-dollar start-up

After landing their first major round of investment in 2015, the co-founders of one of L.A.’s fastest-growing start-ups had to make a major decision. They were flush with cash. It was time to start hiring more employees. But where should they go? “Some people were asking if we could move to Santa...

Facebook loses top product officer Chris Cox as well as WhatsApp chief

Facebook Inc.’s top executive in charge of all products, Chris Cox, the longtime confidant of Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg, is leaving the company. It’s the highest-level departure at the social media giant in years and follows nearly two years of sustained crises. Cox’s unexpected departure,...

Facebook’s global outage was caused by ‘a server configuration change’

Facebook Inc.’s global outage — which hit users of its namesake social network as well as sister services Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp — is winding down, the company announced Thursday. The issue was caused by “a server configuration change” and is now resolved, “and our systems are recovering,”...

Larry Page is pulled deeper into controversy over Google and sexual misconduct complaints

Alphabet Inc. Chief Executive Larry Page didn’t get board approval before he awarded a $150-million stock grant to Andy Rubin, the creator of the Android mobile software, while the company helped cover up Rubin’s alleged misconduct , according to a lawsuit. Eight days after granting the payout to...

If Lyft can't keep its drivers as independent contractors, it may never be profitable

Lyft’s entire business model is predicated on its relationship with its drivers. It hinges on recruiting them, keeping them happy, ensuring the company never has to provide them health insurance and other benefits, and eventually finding a way to replace some of them with self-driving cars so Lyft...

Elizabeth Warren unveils plan to break up Amazon, Facebook and Google

Sen. Elizabeth Warren pledged Friday to take aim at Amazon.com Inc., Facebook Inc. and Google if she is elected president in 2020, breaking apart each of the big tech companies and introducing sweeping new regulation of Silicon Valley. The proposal marks the most ambitious and aggressive effort...

Net neutrality is back in play: Democratic lawmakers announce a bill

House and Senate Democratic leaders unveiled new legislation Wednesday proposing to restore federal net neutrality rules on internet service providers such as AT&T and Verizon. It’s their latest attempt to countermand the Republican-led Federal Communications Commission. Here’s what you need to...

From video game to day job: How ‘SimCity’ inspired a generation of city planners

Jason Baker was studying political science at UC Davis when he got his hands on “SimCity.” He took a careful approach to the computer game. "I was not one of the players who enjoyed Godzilla running through your city and destroying it. I enjoyed making my city run well." This conscientious approach...

Square co-founder Tristan O’Tierney dies at 35

Tristan O’Tierney, a co-founder of the mobile payment company Square, has died after a years-long struggle with addiction. He was 35. O’Tierney had been undergoing treatment at a rehabilitation facility in Ocala, Fla., the San Francisco Chronicle reported . Pamela Tierney told the newspaper that...

YouTube, fighting child exploitation, will ban comments on videos featuring kids

YouTube will block users from commenting on most videos that feature minors, the video-streaming platform said Thursday, responding to reports that pedophiles had used comments to find, track and exploit children. Under YouTube’s new policy, users will no longer be able to comment on videos that...

Tech workers’ fight against forced arbitration gets a boost in Congress

Companies’ long-held practice of forcing workers to take disputes with their employers to arbitration instead of suing got a new, broad challenge Thursday, this time from U.S. lawmakers. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) introduced legislation that would end mandatory...
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