Category Archives: Technology

February 15, 2018

How Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google manipulate our emotions (Video)

The combined market capitalization of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google is now equivalent to the GDP of India. How did these four companies come to infiltrate our lives so completely? In a spectacular rant, Scott Galloway shares insights and eye-opening stats about their dominance and motivation — and what happens when a society prizes shareholder value over everything else. Followed by a Q&A with TED Curator Chris Anderson.

Original source.

January 1, 2018

Redfin CEO: ‘Silicon Valley Is Going To Leave Silicon Valley’

Although Redfin is based in Seattle, Kelman believes the coastal exodus will be “so good for the country.”

Move over California and New York: Make room for Texas and Utah.

That’s the message of Redfin’s Glenn Kelman, chief executive of the $2.5 billion web-based real estate company, which predicts the surge of migration from coastal to middle America will continue, if not accelerate.

“Silicon Valley is going to leave Silicon Valley,” Kelman told CNBC’s Power Lunch show on Wednesday. “Google employs more engineers outside of Silicon Valley than it does in Silicon Valley, and if Google can’t afford Silicon Valley, then no one can.”

The main driver, Kelman said, of the migration of workers and companies from cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York, to Houston, Dallas, and Salt Lake City, will be housing prices. That and the new GOP tax plan, which lowers the cap on interest-deductible mortgage debt from $1 million to $750,000.

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November 26, 2017

YouTube has a pedophile problem on its hands

A spokeswoman for Lidl’s UK arm said it was “completely unacceptable that this content is available to view, and it is, therefore, clear that the strict policies which Google has assured us were in place to tackle offensive content are ineffective”.

YouTube has a perv problem.

The streaming-video giant has seen a slew of big brands — including Adidas, Deutsche Bank, Amazon and Oreo maker Mondelez — yank ads after a UK newspaper revealed on Friday they got paired with videos of scantily clad children that attracted disgusting comments from pedophiles.

Creeps have been flocking to YouTube videos of young girls in their underwear lazing in bed, doing splits and playing with each other. Many of the segments are uploaded by the kids themselves, with sick viewers asking them to remove their clothes and perform sex acts in future videos.

In its investigation, the Times of London said YouTube, a unit of Alphabet’s Inc. Google, had allowed sexualized imagery of children to be easily searchable, and that it hadn’t lived up to promises to better police its site to protect children.

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November 4, 2017

America Fights Back: 1 Million Cord-Cutters Freak Out Cable Industry

The only way patriotic Americans can forever destroy the likes of CNN, MSNBC, ESPN, and a whole herd of left-wing entertainment corporations is to cut the cord, meaning cancel your cable or satellite package. Thankfully, that message appears to be gaining steam; last quarter, a whopping one million patriots cut the cable cord.

As BGR reports, “Cord-cutting, or at least the speed at which people are ditching pay TV, is on track to be the biggest upset of the year.”

The reason all of this wonderful news is an “upset” is because for the longest time, some of these multinational entertainment companies were out there claiming that cord-cutting had peaked; the worst was behind them.

At the time, and for two reasons, this was patent nonsense.

1) Streaming TV is exploding. On top of Netflix, Amazon, Hulu — all three of which you can subscribe to for about one-third of the price of the average cable bill — there is an endless supply of free streaming channels that offer 24/7 news, movies, and television shows.

A couple of weeks ago, I found Pluto TV, which offers a ton of streaming live networks and works just like your cable package. Oh, and it is free.

For the price of a $50 Roku player (I have one on every TV), a whole new world of free TV opens up, endless choices. Of course, there are also subscriptions services available that are not only infinitely cheaper than cable, but unlike cable, you are not assaulted with 20 minutes of commercials every hour.

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October 6, 2017

‘Our minds can be hijacked’: the tech insiders who fear a smartphone dystopia

Google, Twitter and Facebook workers who helped make technology so addictive are disconnecting themselves from the internet. Paul Lewis reports on the Silicon Valley refuseniks alarmed by a race for human attention.

Justin Rosenstein had tweaked his laptop’s operating system to block Reddit, banned himself from Snapchat, which he compares to heroin, and imposed limits on his use of Facebook. But even that wasn’t enough. In August, the 34-year-old tech executive took a more radical step to restrict his use of social media and other addictive technologies.

Rosenstein purchased a new iPhone and instructed his assistant to set up a parental-control feature to prevent him from downloading any apps.

He was particularly aware of the allure of Facebook “likes”, which he describes as “bright dings of pseudo-pleasure” that can be as hollow as they are seductive. And Rosenstein should know: he was the Facebook engineer who created the “like” button in the first place.

A decade after he stayed up all night coding a prototype of what was then called an “awesome” button, Rosenstein belongs to a small but growing band of Silicon Valley heretics who complain about the rise of the so-called “attention economy”: an internet shaped around the demands of an advertising economy.

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August 21, 2017

Ex-Google employee says Silicon Valley blacklists conservatives (Video)

Damore gained national notoriety when an internal memo that he penned faulting Google for its diversity policies went viral.

Google and other companies based in Silicon Valley “blacklist conservatives”, according to a former Google employee who was fired after sending a company-wide memo criticizing the internet giant.

“If someone shows that they’re a conservative, they’ll be blacklisted between different companies and different teams … And that really needs to change,” James Damore, the fired Google engineer, told FOX Business’ Stuart Varney on “Varney & Co.”

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“It was sort of forbidden knowledge at Google,” he said. “But it’s common sense to many.”

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August 15, 2017

Silicon Valley Tightens Its Grip on Free Speech

Alliance between progressives and tech is killing the unfettered exchange of ideas.

Political totalitarianism is coming to America, and it is being ushered in not by government thugs in jackboots but by progressive activists and their allies in Silicon Valley.

In a chilling oped published in The New York Times on July 14, Lisa Feldman Barrett, a professor of psychology at Northeastern University, argued that so-called “hate speech” is the same thing as physical violence because it may possibly cause emotionally fragile individuals stress — and should be made illegal.

Thankfully, the First Amendment prohibits the federal government from following such advice, but online companies are taking it upon themselves to stamp-out so-called “hate speech,” strangling free speech and the free exchange of ideas in the process.

A number of troubling actions by internet companies — Google most prominent among them — are making it increasingly clear that some in Silicon Valley have proclaimed themselves defenders of the progressive, politically correct faith, and that those firms will silence any and all heretics who challenge those beliefs.

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July 14, 2017

Torching the Modern-Day Library of Alexandria

“Somewhere at Google there is a database containing 25 million books and nobody is allowed to read them.”

You were going to get one-click access to the full text of nearly every book that’s ever been published. Books still in print you’d have to pay for, but everything else—a collection slated to grow larger than the holdings at the Library of Congress, Harvard, the University of Michigan, at any of the great national libraries of Europe—would have been available for free at terminals that were going to be placed in every local library that wanted one.

At the terminal you were going to be able to search tens of millions of books and read every page of any book you found. You’d be able to highlight passages and make annotations and share them; for the first time, you’d be able to pinpoint an idea somewhere inside the vastness of the printed record, and send somebody straight to it with a link. Books would become as instantly available, searchable, copy-pasteable—as alive in the digital world—as web pages.

It was to be the realization of a long-held dream. “The universal library has been talked about for millennia,” Richard Ovenden, the head of Oxford’s Bodleian Libraries, has said. “It was possible to think in the Renaissance that you might be able to amass the whole of published knowledge in a single room or a single institution.” In the spring of 2011, it seemed we’d amassed it in a terminal small enough to fit on a desk.

“This is a watershed event and can serve as a catalyst for the reinvention of education, research, and intellectual life,” one eager observer wrote at the time.

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May 21, 2017

REVEALED: Barack Obama Talked Directly with Mark Zuckerberg About Facebook Concerns

Former president Barack Obama spoke directly with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg during the latter’s drafting of a 5,700-word manifesto outlining the company’s future goals.

Obama was one of the instigators of the “fake news” panic that has put Facebook in the establishment’s CROSSHAIRS following the election of Donald Trump. Obama has repeatedly addressed the issue and even discussed it privately with European leaders prior to leaving office.

According to a major New York Times Magazine feature on the future of Facebook, he is also holding private discussions with Mark Zuckerberg.

Earlier that day, Zuckerberg’s staff had sent me a draft of a 5,700­ word manifesto that, I was told, he spent weeks writing. The document, “Building Global Community,” argued that until now, Facebook’s corporate goal had merely been to connect people. But that was just Step 1. According to the manifesto, Facebook’s “next focus will be developing the social infrastructure for community — for supporting us, for keeping us safe, for informing us, for civic engagement, and for inclusion of all.” If it was a nebulous crusade, it was also vast in its ambition.

According to the piece, Zuckerberg — after a “pause” — admitted that he had been in talks with former president Obama during the drafting of the manifesto.

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May 4, 2017

The Internet’s Endless War to Seize the Memes of Production

Culture warriors even forced the resignation of Yale’s Silliman College head Nicholas Christakis and lecturer Erika Christakis for defending Halloween costumes. Given that this is what “equality politics” consists of, it’s not surprising that most people want no part of it.

In the wake of Donald Trump’s ascension to the highest office in the land, journalists have sought answers for his popularity. Aside from the influence of “fake news,” the betrayal of white women towards the mythical sisterhood (because all women think alike, don’t you know?), and the “ignorance” of the conservative voting bloc, one particular group of politically-active millennial voters is brought up time and time again as a prime reason for Trump’s win at the polls: the anime-loving denizens of 4chan.

Writing for New York Magazine, former Gawker chief Max Read attempts to deconstruct the labyrinthian memeverse that is now the Internet—a social environment riddled with inside jokes and postmodernist hot takes. Referencing 4chan, Read argues that the Internet is now a message board because the “self-proclaimed losers and freaks of 4chan and its ilk had come to great political prominence” upon Trump’s election. After all, he argues, Hillary Clinton waged war against a cartoon frog.

To credit memes for so much of Trump’s success, however, is to bestow power upon the very memes that the progressive left battles daily. Fighting against memes, which are viral by nature, is to infect your audience with an awareness of their existence, which in turn grants them even more power. Were it not for the constant outrage against Pepe the Frog, the “OK” sign as a “white supremacist gesture,” and numerous other spawn of Reddit, Twitter and 4chan, these symbols would hold no meaning outside the bubbles in which they were formed.

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