Tech News

Tech News and Analysis from around the web

Foo Yun Chee / Reuters:
EU blocks's €1.63B acquisition of Etraveli, saying Booking failed to allay concerns that the deal bolsters its dominance in the hotel OTA market  —  Booking Holdings' (BKNG.O) proposed 1.63-billion-euro ($1.7 billion) purchase of Swedish peer ETraveli Group was blocked …

Zheping Huang / Bloomberg:
Sources: China told Tencent and Huya to stream only some esports semifinals and finals at the Hangzhou Asian Games, in part due to internet addiction concerns  —  - Only semifinals and finals will be streamed to local viewers  — Esports breaks ground with medal debut at Hangzhou Asian Games

Sidhartha Shukla / Bloomberg:
DeFi project Mixin Network suspends deposits and withdrawals after suffering a hack involving about $200M; SlowMist: Mixin's cloud provider was compromised  —  - Compromise in cloud service provider's database led to breach  — Project expected to give details in a livestream later today

Los Angeles Times:
The WGA and AMPTP reach a tentative deal to end the strike; sources: the proposed three-year contract adds new AI rules, increases streaming residuals, and more  —  The Writers Guild of America and the major Hollywood studios have reached a tentative deal that would end a strike that has lasted …

Jody Serrano / The Messenger:
Q&A with Kevin Systrom about Artifact's Links discovery feature, moderation, the bear case and bull case for Threads, the current state of Instagram, and more  —  Kevin Systrom hopes a fresh jolt of growth to his Artifact app allows it to compete better with the industry's bigger relics

So far I've asked people who I think of as Friends of Local News to also invest in an EZ-Pass for News and help sources going directly to users of news. We have to rebuild the open web as much as we need to rebuild local journalism. It's very much the same kind of thing. All our news flows will soon be going through ten servers. This is by design. It works a lot better for Google if they only have to keep their eye on Apple, Netflix, Microsoft and Amazon and a few others.

McKenzie Funk / New York Times:
A profile of Hank Asher, the “father of data fusion” who died in 2013 after initiating a vast shift in privacy norms through his data mining software companies  —  Hank Asher was a drug smuggler with a head for numbers — until he figured out how to turn Americans' private information into a big business.

If you want to make a difference in tech you have to do things normal people would think are too radical. It might be the biggest hurdle to get over. You think shit, it's probably not going to work either way, so I'll just do it that way that might work.

Note I said "make a difference" not "succeed" because then we have to discuss what success means.

At 68 I'm still getting ideas that require throwing caution to the wind. 🚀

Sources: Apple plans to increase its production in India over 5x to ~$40B in the next four to five years, and start making AirPods, on top of iPhones, in 2024  —  iPhone maker Apple has plans to scale up production in India by over five-fold to around $40 billion, or about Rs 3.32 lakh crore …

Chethan Rao / Android Police:
EV maker Nio launches the Nio Phone in China with a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset and 30+ car-specific features, including automatic parking, starting at ~$890  —  - Nio, an electric car manufacturer, has entered the Chinese smartphone market with the Nio Phone, targeting owners of its EVs …

I have a new theory about time travel.

But first a question -- if it's possible to travel back in time, in the future, why haven't we been visited by time travelers already? Of course maybe we have been, but for some reason they're not visible to us, they're in another dimension or something like that.

But assuming we could experience their presence if they were here, maybe it's because in order for a time traveler to land here, we need to have a certain technology that we don't yet have, that acts as a receiver of sorts.

And the day when that receiver is invented, perhaps unknowingly to the inventor, all of a sudden their house or apartment turns into a religious and historic shrine, a Disneyland or Fort Sumter of time travel. The place is instantly transformed into Wailing Wall, Ground Zero, or Mount Rushmore.

I imagine there is already a science fiction book based on this premise.

Wall Street Journal:
Sources: Meta plans to release AI chatbots with personalities, internally called Gen AI Personas, across its apps at this week's Connect, to attract young users  —  Facebook parent is developing bots with personalities, including a ‘sassmaster general’ robot that answers questions

I watched Barbie and it was so bad. Made my stomach ache. The movie is an ad for products you can buy on Amazon. The ultimate of exploitation. It got an 80 on Metacritic. What is wrong with everyone! It was probably the worst movie ever made.

Zheping Huang / Bloomberg:
A look at the role of pro gaming in Tencent's long-term strategy as China hosts the Hangzhou Asian Games, the first event where esports are eligible for medals  —  - Hundreds of pro players will compete at Hangzhou Asian Games  — Tencent places esports at the heart of its online media empire

New York Times:
Some employees reminisce about Netflix's DVD subscription service, which upended the entertainment industry and is shutting down on September 29 after 25 years  —  The company's DVD subscription service is ending this month, bringing to a close an origin story that ultimately upended the entertainment industry.

Dave Lee / Bloomberg:
Q&A with outgoing Amazon SVP of Devices and Services Dave Limp on using generative AI for Alexa, a possible Alexa subscription, advice for Panos Panay, and more  —  The departing executive in charge of Amazon's voice assistant has a conversation about its future in the age of AI.

Malathi Nayak / Bloomberg:
In a countersuit, chip startup Rivos and six ex-Apple staff claim Apple intimidates those who “dare to leave”; Apple sued Rivos over trade secrets theft in 2022  —  - Rivos contests Apple's tech theft claims with countersuit  — Apple accuses the startup of stealing proprietary information

Sean Lyngaas / CNN:
Three major US voting equipment makers let some researchers stress-test their software and hardware, to take on conspiracy theories with greater transparency  —  Major US voting equipment manufacturers are enlisting cybersecurity experts to provide additional stress-tests of their systems …

ChatGPT is useful for software UI design based on prior art.

A nerd in a Wisconsin baseball cap throws out the first pitch at Shea Stadium.

Quick idea: What if we gave up too soon on the idea of Sources Go Direct being a legit way to report and distribute news?

One of these new twitter-like services should specialize in hooking up with blogs. A chat system for bloggers? Threads hanging off each post? Cross-linking? Let's have long and short form work really well together. I know all about the technology that will make this possible, but what's important is that it's a process, not an event. We should start working on this now and keep working on it for years.

I need a free or almost free service where I can quickly create an email address that's forwarded to my Gmail account, to create all the Bluesky accounts I need to. Any ideas? Also I have created a new account for Thread Writer for Bluesky.

I've created a lot of Gmail accounts over the years, but I don't remember what most of them are! I thought I could ask Bard, with its new interface to Gmail to give me the list, but either I don't know how to ask the question, or it's not ready with that kind of data? No matter what, we're in very early days for this. Also I think Google should spin off its AI stuff, they're too much of a monopoly to monopolize this. Yes, I can hold all these ideas in my head at the same time, you can too. :-)