Technology

Will Autonomous Cars Kill the Traffic Light?

Gizmodo UK - 2 hours 22 min ago
If all the cars know where all the other cars are, surely they can speed up and slow down accordingly?
Categories: Technology

Hailo Launches API For E-Hailing On The Same Day As Uber

Tech Crunch - 2 hours 25 min ago
 Not to be left behind in the growing feud between Uber, Lyft, Sidecar and others, Hailo has launched a public API for its taxi hailing service, on the very same day Uber announced its own. The startup, which launched in 2011 in London but has since expanded to various cities across the UK, London and Canada, originally dealt in standard taxis vs. Uber’s black car focus, but has since… Read More
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TC Cribs: Storm8, The Land Of Very Colorful Desks And Lots Of Fancy Beer

Tech Crunch - 2 hours 42 min ago
 In this episode of Cribs we headed to Storm8, the company that makes lots of popular mobile social games. Storm8 is housed in a, well, pretty bland looking corporate building in suburban Redwood City, so we weren’t sure what to expect. But the inside of the office tells a very different story, with lots of very colorful things to catch the eye. That’s largely because Storm8… Read More
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Kuddle, An “Instagram With Training Wheels,” Introduces Social Media To Kids

Tech Crunch - 2 hours 51 min ago
 A new mobile application called Kuddle is introducing a safer way for kids to get introduced to social media, while still under a parent’s watchful eye. The photo-sharing app, which is like a more restricted version of Instagram, allows children to post and share photos with friends in a protected environment, safe from cyberbullying or unwanted connections from strangers. Founded in… Read More
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Seven Crazy Bikes That Almost Changed Cycling Forever (and Then Failed)

Gizmodo UK - 2 hours 52 min ago
Here's a selection of wacky bike concepts from across the 20th century — most of which have at least one redeeming feature.
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Everdwell Gives Real Estate Agents A More Beautiful Online Home

Tech Crunch - 3 hours 18 min ago
 Real estate is a business where tech is only slowly starting to make a dent into the traditional way of doing things. But even the most technophobic agent now knows that an online presence besides just being listed in an MLS is a necessity. Everdwell wants to give those agents — many of whom aren’t all that tech savvy — an easy way to create an online home for their listings.… Read More
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New Crystal Clear Solar Cells Could Power Your Smartphone One Day

Gizmodo UK - 3 hours 22 min ago
The idea of a completely transparent solar panel has always been a bit of a dream. Well, guess what? That dream is becoming a reality.
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Vine Finally Lets You Import Video From Your Camera Roll

Tech Crunch - 3 hours 29 min ago
 With more than 100 million people watching Vines across the web each month, and over 1 billion loops every day, Vine has just released an update to the app that finally lets users import video from their camera. Twitter’s video sharing app has always required users to film new content directly within the app, using Vine’s once-unique hold-to-record feature. Now, Vine users can… Read More
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Twitter Tightens Photo Policies Following High-Profile Deaths

Read Write Web - 3 hours 46 min ago

Twitter is tightening its policies on harassment and graphic imagery following the deaths of Robin Williams and U.S. journalist James Foley, who was reportedly beheaded by jihadis in Syria. On Tuesday, the company stated it will now remove certain images of deceased individuals at the family's request.

Twitter announced its clarified guidelines on images of deceased Twitter users soon after graphic images reportedly depicted Foley's beheading by members of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria began circulating on the social media site. Twitter quickly deleted the images as they circulated and suspended many of accounts that were sharing them. Some of the accounts however, were reportedly reinstated.

Deleting images at the request of families is a conservative change for Twitter, which has proved a crucial tool for documenting and distributing news and information happening around the world. People regularly share graphic content and images, and the company suggests users mark media containing sensitive content to prevent it from automatically displaying in tweets. 

Under the new guidelines, Twitter won't delete just any image, however, and it makes it very clear in the updated policy that images can be removed in certain circumstances like immediately before and after death, but if images are newsworthy, they may not be scrubbed from social network.

In order to respect the wishes of loved ones, Twitter will remove imagery of deceased individuals in certain circumstances. Immediate family members and other authorized individuals may request the removal of images or video of deceased individuals, from when critical injury occurs to the moments before or after death, by sending an e-mail to privacy@twitter.com. When reviewing such media removal requests, Twitter considers public interest factors such as the newsworthiness of the content and may not be able to honor every request.

The new policy also comes on the heels of Robin Williams' death on Aug. 11. His daughter, Zelda Williams, received disturbing images and harassing comments following her father's death that eventually led her to quit the social network.

In response, Twitter suspended the accounts that harassed her and Twitter promised to "evaluate its policies" around tragic events to prevent future behavior. 

Lead image by Anthony Quintano

Categories: Technology

Why We Still Have Bezels (But May Not for Long)

Gizmodo UK - 3 hours 53 min ago
Barely bezelled phones are popping up more frequently. There's just one problem, though. Bezels matter. And we still need them.
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Function Space Brings Its Learning, Discussing And Problem Solving Science Platform To iOS

Tech Crunch - 3 hours 53 min ago
 Learning, discussing and problem solving are three important steps in understanding concepts in science. Function Space, a social learning science network, wants to bring the three together in a cross-platform learning portal aimed at corporate research and students at any level for free. Read More
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7,000 People Are Watching Two Fish Play Street Fighter

Tech Crunch - 4 hours 30 sec ago
 Two fish are playing Street Fighter over on Twitch, and more than 7,000 people are watching the mayhem. Or, partial mayhem. Sometimes the fish don’t swim in a pattern that leads to much confrontation. That said, the game is afloat, with the fish “Aquarius” taking on “Robert the Bruce.” Read More
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Today’s Best Reads From Our Other Sites

Gizmodo UK - 4 hours 3 min ago
Kotaku UK: Assassin's Creed Rogue is actually pretty different | Pierce Brosnan kind of sucks at Goldeneye | Inside a Bitcoin mine in rural China | Lifehacker UK: Five working from home tips that apply to office life | Ask Lifehacker: How can I leave work events and parties early without losing face? | Free Windows 8 Start menu programs: How to get the Start menu back
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It’s Shocking How Much a Soldier’s Kit Has Changed Since 1066

Gizmodo UK - 4 hours 22 min ago
This photography series looks at how an average soldier's kit has changed since the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The differences, and similarities, will surprise you.
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Skype Will Make Itself Less Noisy Thanks To New, Smarter Chat Notifications

Tech Crunch - 4 hours 23 min ago
 Skype this morning announced a change to the way its notifications will function, designed to keep the app from annoying you with beeps and buzzes across all your devices. These new smart notifications will instead only be sent to the device you’re actually using at the time, says the company, while your other devices, including PCs, tablets or smartphones, will remain silent. Read More
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Google Wants To Control Every Character You Type

Read Write Web - 4 hours 28 min ago

Imagine a typeface that unites all the world’s languages. A publisher could print a book in Arabic, Cherokee, Egyptian Hieroglyphics and more—all without swapping out fonts.

That’s what Google is attempting to accomplish with Google Noto, a free font family that currently supports 96 languages, and aspires to support them all. Noto stands for “no tofu,” where tofu are what font professionals call those empty white boxes that appear when a character isn’t supported in a typeface.

Started in 2012, the Noto font family now spans 100,000 characters. This month, Google partnered with Adobe to release a new collection of fonts—Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese, and Korean—which can be used separately or bundled together in one file so a writer can switch between languages without switching to another font.

This isn’t the first time a technology organization has made an effort to universalize the world’s fonts. In 1987, the Unicode Consortium began developing a way to make computer type compliant with global languages. The result was the Unicode Standard, a system of character codes designed to eventually represent every character in every language on Earth.

See also: Google's Gender Diversity Push Is Paying Off

Unicode Standard wasn’t really adopted by Web browsers until 2008, and still isn’t a complete solution for capturing all the nuances of global languages in a culturally sensitive way. It was designed with character universality in mind, not particular languages. So the playing field is still ripe for a new global typeface. Whether Google is the right team to take the field, however, is debatable. 

Pakistani-American writer Ali Eteraz told NPR that he isn’t sure a massive software company like Google is the right steward for the project: “I tend to go back and forth. Is it sort of a benign—possibly even helpful—universalism that Google is bringing to the table? Or is it something like technological imperialism?”

In other words, when Google is the only entity making decisions, critics fear that the actual language speakers left out of the process are the ones who suffer. Critics already have found issues with Noto’s handling of Urdu, which they say incorrectly adopts Arabic characters. 

See also: How And Why Google Is Open Sourcing Its Data Centers?

Google has already taken on an enormous effort, but one way it could attempt to improve cultural sensitivity toward global languages would be to support languages that even Unicode has overlooked. NPR used the example of Nastaʿlīq Urdu, a type of calligraphic script used in famous Urdu poetry. Right now, the only way to share it online is through image files.

Google Noto has already made strides toward not only supporting common modern languages, but minority and historical ones too. While supporting such languages will require extensive research and development, it’s the only way to truly achieve Noto’s ultimate goal of “visual harmonization across languages.”

Photo courtesy of NASA

Categories: Technology

Foodmento Is The Foursquare Of Specific Dishes, Not Restaurants

Tech Crunch - 4 hours 47 min ago
 Food has invaded Instagram in such an overwhelming way that studies actually show that people get physically full or tire of certain foods just from looking at the pictures. But there’s really no effective way to direct your followers to the specific dish you’ve endorsed. That’s where Foodmento comes in. Read More
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SlideShare Axes Its Freemium Model, Makes ‘Pro’ Features Like Analytics Free

Tech Crunch - 4 hours 52 min ago
 SlideShare, the LinkedIn-owned site that lets you upload and distribute presentations online, is turning over a new leaf today. The service, which has 60 million users, is going free. In tandem with that, SlideShare is dropping its PRO tiers, once priced at $19/month and $49/month, and making extra features like analytics, which used to come at a price, free for all. The premium tiers were… Read More
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Pivotal Expands Its Enterprise Cloud Platform To Mobile

Tech Crunch - 4 hours 52 min ago
 Pivotal, the enterprise cloud platform that raised a $105 million private equity round last year, today announced a large expansion of its product portfolio today. The update introduces new services for mobile development to the company’s Pivotal CF platform-as-a-service offering that are designed to work side-by-side with the company’s previously announced data services. The… Read More
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The Horrors of Unpoppable Bubble Wrap

Gizmodo UK - 4 hours 52 min ago
Bubble wrap that cannot be popped is the antithesis of satisfaction, a new form of pure tension, forged deep in the belly of Mount Cringe.
Categories: Technology
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