What the Tech - Trends, News & Updates...

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Apple acquires SMI eye-tracking company

In a move that is sure to stoke rumors about Apple’s future work in augmented and virtual reality technologies, Apple has acquired SensoMotoric Instruments (SMI), an eye-tracking firm, MacRumors reports.<p>The German company, which was founded in 1991, has done significant work in eye-tracking …

Mixed Reality

Why Stackshare is quietly becoming a secret weapon for developers and Silicon Valley CTOs

On Stackshare, Airbnb lists over 50 services in its “stack,” Slack lists 24, and Spotify lists more than 31; these stacks are collections of different pieces of software that each company is using to run their operations, and range from infrastructure tools to communications tools to container …

Startups

Jeff Bezos just handed corporate America a $50 billion question

If you needed any further proof that Amazon is shaking the US commercial landscape to its very core, look no further than the past week.<p>Amazon's $13.7 billion deal for Whole Foods has had a ripple effect across sectors. The grocery industry, an $800 billion addressable market in the US, according …

Markets

Mark Zuckerberg just unveiled Facebook's new mission statement

The social network has a new community-geared goal<p>When asked about his life’s work, Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has traditionally fallen back on a somewhat nebulous answer: making “the world more open and connected.” It was an almost quaint euphemism for the company’s more …

Facebook

Google Unveils an AI Investment Fund. It's Betting on an App Store for Algorithms.

Google just placed yet another bet on the idea that artificial intelligence will remake the world—and throw off wild profits.<p>The company disclosed …

Machine Learning

This app is a perfect weapon for fighting your own online privacy war

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.<p>The internet can be a dangerous place for those who aren’t careful. But you know that already.<p>One way to stay safe online is by investing in a VPN – a basic security solution that masks your online …

Privacy

How Apple leapt ahead of Google, Facebook and Microsoft on AR

Apple is fashionably late to the party, but it's arguably jumped to first place in the augmented reality race.<p>We knew Apple CEO Tim Cook was keenly interested in virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). But earlier this month, Apple finally -- and openly -- revealed its plans to the …

Augmented Reality

Amazon Prime is testing a try-before-you-buy option on up to 15 pieces of clothing at a time

Prime Wardrobe is currently in beta.<p>Following in the footsteps of a host of e-commerce startups, Amazon’s fashion division is testing a service that lets Prime members take seven days to try on clothing orders at home before deciding on what to buy.<p>The service — called Prime Wardrobe — lets …

Amazon

5 awesome new Lyft features that will make you say, 'Isn't that an existing means of transportation?'

Here at Lyft, we care about two things: honesty and innovation. Also, admitting when we've made a mistake. Also driving or whatever.<p>Now, if Lyft's new service, dubbed "Lyft Shuttle" seems familiar, that's because it is a bus. Who knew?<p>Making preset stops along a preset route in a shared vehicle has …

Uber

The iPhone Is 10 Years Old. Here’s the Story of Its Birth.

<b>THE ONE DEVICE</b><b><br>The Secret History of the iPhone</b><br>By Brian Merchant<br>Illustrated. 407 pp. Little, Brown & Company. $28.<p>Before anybody outside Apple was aware of it, the project that would become the iPhone was referred to internally by the code name Purple. No one seems to remember exactly why; it may …

Books

Even Google has a virtual fidget spinner now

Search ‘spinner’ for a whole new way to waste time<p>If you search for “fidget spinner” on Google, you’ll learn that the fad du jour currently occupies what physicists call “quantum superposition.” Fidget spinners “are over,” but they’re also “producing local success stories.” Fidget spinners are …

Fidget Spinner

Bosch is building a $1.1 billion self-driving and smart city chip plant

Tier one auto industry supplier Bosch is investing heavily in where the market is headed, with a newly-announced $1.1 billion facility that will produce semiconductors uses in self-driving cars, smart homes and smart city infrastructure. The new Dresden-based chip fab is set to start producing …

Smart Cities

Move Over, Bitcoin. Ether Is the Digital Currency of the Moment.

The price of Bitcoin has hit record highs in recent months, more than doubling in price since the start of the year. Despite these gains, Bitcoin is on the verge of losing its position as the dominant virtual currency.<p>The value of Ether, the digital money that lives on an upstart network known as …

Cryptocurrency

Google launches its AI-powered jobs search engine

Looking for a new job is getting easier. Google today launched a new jobs search feature right on its search result pages that lets you search for jobs across virtually all of the major online job boards like LinkedIn, Monster, WayUp, DirectEmployers, CareerBuilder and Facebook and others. Google …

SEO

How the Internet Is Changing Friendship

Wherever your friends are, you can always check up on them with social media. But does that mean that we’re keeping friendships alive past their natural expiration date, or are virtual connections actually making friendships stronger?

Sociology

What falling e-book sales tell us about technology in 2017

<i>The e-book is no longer forcing print books out of existence – what does this mean?</i><p>E-books are a symbol of the transition into the technological age, and when devices like the Kindle and Nook exploded onto the scene, it seemed books were going to disappear. For a while, it seemed certain that …

Trends

Report: Apple has secret team working to turn iPhone into ‘one-stop shop’ for medical info

It’s no secret that Apple has a growing interest in the health industry as it continues to expand health tracking capabilities with the iPhone and Apple Watch. Now, a report from CNBC claims that Apple is looking to turn the iPhone into a “one-stop shop” for all medical record information.<p>The …

Health Care

Pokémon Go’s big summer update adds cooperative raids and redesigned gyms

Nearly a year after it first launched, <i>Pokémon Go</i> is getting a big summer update aimed at making the game both more accessible and more social. While it may not be as popular as the heady days when it first debuted, developer Niantic says that <i>Pokémon Go</i> has been downloaded more than 750 million …

Pokémon

Google advances AI with ‘one model to learn them all’

Google quietly released an academic paper that could provide a blueprint for the future of machine learning. Called “One Model to Learn Them All,” it lays out a template for how to create a single machine learning model that can address multiple tasks well.<p>The MultiModel, as the Google researchers …

Machine Learning

Just in Time, Amazon Patents Method to Prevent In-store Comparison Shopping

Amazon is perfecting a different kind of business model than we’ve traditionally known. First, crush an industry by focusing on growth instead of …

Amazon

Google releases new TensorFlow Object Detection API

Google is releasing a new TensorFlow object detection API to make it easier for developers and researchers to identify objects within images. Google is trying to offer the best of simplicity and performance — the models being released today have performed well in benchmarking and have become …

Machine Learning

Technology and music in 2017: how tech is changing the universal language

<i>The development of music and how consumers listen has changed because of technology</i><p>Music has long stood as a constant, reliable part of human culture for millennia, but in the rise of the technology era, how music is created and listened to is ever changing. Innovation has always been inextricably …

Music

Winners and losers in Amazon’s $13.7B purchase of Whole Foods

Amazon is taking a huge bite out of the fresh food business with its bid for Whole Foods Market for $13.7 billion. But even though this is a deal between two companies, it’s not just the two of them being touched by it.<p>The intersection between the food and tech industries has been playing out for …

Whole Foods

How to start incorporating machine learning in the enterprise arena

The world is long past the Industrial Revolution, and now we are experiencing an era of Digital Revolution. Machine learning, artificial intelligence, and big data analysis are the reality of today’s world.<p>I recently had a chance to talk to Ciaran Dynes, Senior Vice President of Products at Talend …

Big Data

Google releases MobileNets, a collection of mobile-first computer vision models

Google has now released MobileNets, a family of computer vision models for TensorFlow. What’s special about these? They run entirely on the lower-power mobile devices that we all carry around in our pockets.<p>In the realm of visual recognition, mobile devices have long had access to many of these …

Machine Learning

Amazon to buy Whole Foods Market in deal valued at $13.7 billion

Amazon.com jolted the grocery industry Friday when it announced plans to buy Whole Foods Market, introducing new uncertainty to a sector already struggling to keep up with growing competition.<p>The $13.7 billion deal heightens a years-long battle between Amazon, the Internet darling, and powerhouse …

Trends

Apple undercuts Facebook in the augmented reality platform war

Facebook may be the world’s most powerful app, but it’s still just an app on Apple’s operating system.<p>Facebook’s grand vision for augmented reality was that it would make it easy for any developer to build and distribute an AR experience — as long as it lived inside Facebook’s app. But Apple has …

Augmented Reality

How to Give Your Chatbot Some Soul In 5 Easy Steps

The more human-like a bot is, the more customers enjoy interacting with it.<p>The chatbot world has evolved significantly over the past few years. Today, instead of being simply gadget-like tools that answer basic customer care questions, they have become problem-solving machines. Above all, they've …

Chatbots

A new device can clean polluted air and turn it into hydrogen energy

A team of Belgian researchers has developed a device that will remove pollutants from the air and convert them into simple hydrogen — using sunlight, nanoparticles and a photoelectric chemical membrane.<p>The project was conceived and developed by two sets of researchers working on related issues, …

Clean Energy