Monday, September 21, 2015

Talkspace wants you to combat social media addiction by texting a therapist

Whether or not you admit it, we all present ourselves in a particular light on the Web. From witty tweets to heavily edited Instagram photos, the pressure to be “Liked” on the Web is constant – and it’s an issue that’s fast becoming a pandemic to every type of social media users, young and old.

To help provide some therapeutic relief, Talkspace, the Web service that allows you to chat with an on-call counselor, now offers a Social Media Dependency program. The three-month therapy plan aims to help those afflicted by bad self-perception, depression and body image issues brought on by social media, providing ways to ease off the obsession and build confidence. Read more

Here's what IoT will do for transportation

The Internet of Things (IoT) is dramatically accelerating the pace of innovation in the transportation industry—especially the cars and trucks we drive every day. And when you apply the laws that have been driving technology innovation for decades—Moore’s Law and Metcalfe’s Law—it’s not long before our automobiles will resemble smart devices on wheels and your vehicle may very well be the most expensive computing device you own. Read more

Grocery shopping might be less painful with this smart cart

Cambridge Consultants, a product development group based in the U.K., is showing off a connected shopping cart that can tell a retailer where you are in a store within three feet. The smart carts are equipped with Bluetooth radios and sensors to track the cart’s location so store owners can offer promotions and eliminate checkout lines. It also means fewer carts will leave the parking lot. Read more

Worried about smart TVs listening in? Welcome to the smart home


Worried about smart TVs listening in? Welcome to the smart home



by David Meyer
Feb. 9, 2015 - 9:52 AM PDT
2 Comments



Credit: Kobby Dagan / Shutterstock.com









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The last weekend saw a fair amount of freaking out over the privacy policy associated with Samsung’s smart TVs, which warns customers that “if your spoken words include personal or other sensitive information, that information will be among the data captured and transmitted to a third party through your use of voice recognition.”

Well, yeah: that’s how cloud-based speech recognition works. You say stuff and it goes off to a powerful computer somewhere for voice-to-text translation and interpretation. The issue here is of course the idea of Samsung’s TV listening in all the time – if chatter is being constantly monitored and parsed, that isn’t just reminiscent of 1984; it’s pretty much described in Orwell’s book. Read more

Organic ‘computers’ made of DNA could process data inside our bodies

We invariably imagine electronic devices to be made from silicon chips, with which computers store and process information as binary digits (zeros and ones) represented by tiny electrical charges. But it need not be this way: among the alternatives to silicon are organic mediums such as DNA.

DNA computing was first demonstrated in 1994 by Leonard Adleman who encoded and solved the travelling salesman problem, a math problem to find the most efficient route for a salesman to take between hypothetical cities, entirely in DNA. Read more

Friday, September 11, 2015

A Hype-Free Guide to the Latest Apple Event

This is a guide to the “Hey Siri” event free of hyperbole.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Sony's smart home vision is a sci-fi nerd's dream

What does the smart home look like? Right now, it's mostly smartphone-controlled light bulbs, speakers, cameras and other appliances. It's exciting stuff, but undeniably uninspiring.
Sony's Life Space UX, the company's model smart home of the future, if you will, is closer to what a smart home should look like: a harmonious blending of technology and furniture that's aesthetically pleasing with a zen calmness. Read more

Fiat Chrysler Recalls 7,800 SUVs Over Hacking Concerns

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV's U.S. arm said on Friday it would recall 7,810 sport utility vehicles in the United States to update software for radios to prevent hacking. 
The announcement by FCA US LLC, formerly Chrysler Group LLC, comes more than a month after the company recalled about 1.4 million vehicles in the United States for the software update. Two cybersecurity researchers used the Internet to remotely turn off a Jeep's engine as it drove, escalating concerns about the safety of Internet-connected vehicles. Read more

US Justice Department Cracks Down on Mobile Phone Surveillance

New rules require federal law enforcement officials to get search warrant before using ‘Stingray’ tracking technology, tricking phones to believe it’s a cell tower. Read more