Sidharth Venkatesh

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Apple acquires speech technology and virtual assistant startup VocalIQ

Cupertino is set on improving its voice technology and virtual assistant, and is reportedly doing so by acquiring a UK-based startup that specializes in just that. <i>Financial Times</i> reports that Apple acquired VocalIQ, a company that builds virtual assistants using machine learning tech. One can …

‘British Schindler’ honoured for saving 669 children from the Nazis

Sir Nicholas Winton, a British man who saved 669 children from the Nazis, was awarded the highest civilian honour in the Czech Republic on Tuesday.<p>Winton, now 105, was presented with the Order of the White Lion by the Czech president in a special ceremony at Prague Castle.<p>Winton, who has often been …

Periscope now has 10 million users

And they're watching 40 years' worth of streams a day<p>Twitter's live-streaming app hit a big milestone on Aug. 10th: the company now has 10 million accounts active on iOS and Android, founder Kayvon Beykpour said in a broadcast today. The company reached that number about four months after it …

Tinder vs Vanity Fair is today’s best dumbest fight on the Internet

Sometimes the Internet just drops a magical gift into your lap when you’re not even looking. This is just such a moment, thanks to our good friends at Vanity Fair and Tinder.<p>In brief: Vanity Fair wrote a story about how apps are killing dating. Tinder had a meltdown on Twitter.<p>What is beautiful …

EA Sports to Release Free Version of FIFA for Android and iOS, And That's Awesome

EA Sports has created many a classic—and sports video game nerds such as myself have spent many an hour playing those classics—but perhaps no game has the widespread appeal of its FIFA series. The global popularity of the actual sport has a lot to do with it, but there’s more to it than just …

Niantic Labs is leaving Google, but won't be the 'N' in Alphabet

Google’s Niantic Labs, which is in charge of Ingress and Field Trip, is leaving the company. It won’t fall under Alphabet, either — Niantic is going solo.<p>In a Google+ post (ironically), Niantic announced its independence:<p>Niantic Labs is becoming an independent company. We’ll be taking our unique …

Ingress creator Niantic Labs leaving Google to become an independent company

Surely, you have heard of Ingress, the Google-backed augmented reality game that has been downloaded over 12 million times and has all these players frantically hacking portals all over the city. This game, along with Field Trip, was created by Niantic Labs, a group that was incubated within …

Niantic

Apple’s App Store Saw $1.7B in Billings And Broke Customer Records In July

Perhaps to counter concerns over iPhone sales and China, Apple this week released numbers related to the App Store’s growth that demonstrate the very real impact China is having on its app ecosystem and developer community.<p>The company said that, in July, it had its largest number of transacting …

Apps

Kenyan tweeters raise money for brain tumour patient

<b>A Kenyan man with a brain tumour has thanked people for donating towards his treatment following a Twitter appeal.</b><p>Emmanuel Jadudi tweeted that he was "overwhelmed" and did not know how to thank them for the money raised.<p>On Tuesday, popular Kenyan blogger Jackson Biko urged Kenyans to donate money …

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Now you can drive around Mars with NASA's Curiosity simulator

Want to explore the surface of the red planet without signing up for the Mars One mission? No problem: NASA has built two interactive web applications that will let you explore the planet to your heart's content from the comfort of your armchair.<p>Both of NASA's new toys will give you a closer look …

Adidas purchases Runtastic for $239 million

Sports giant Adidas has just announced its acquisition of Runtastic, an Austrian GPS fitness tracking company with a popular app by the name name. The deal is worth €220 million ($239 million) and will see Adidas grab a big share of the GPS fitness tracking app market.<p>Adidas already has a range of …

Wearable Tech

Nokia sells HERE Maps to BMW, Audi and Daimler

Nokia has sold HERE Maps to a German automotive consortium for 2.8 billion euros (£1.97 billion), in a move the company is describing as the "next …

Nokia

Anuradha Roy, the only Indian on the Man Booker Prize 2015 longlist

Anuradha Roy doesn't think nationalities have anything to do with literature—and yet, she cannot help fielding questions about how it feels to be the …

Books