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Saturday, April 29, 2017

Apr 29 - New 'TechCrunch' feed email from feed2email.net

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Former NSA director explains why the spy agency will end a controversial surveillance technique

Apr 29, 12:22AM

 Earlier today, the NSA announced its intentions to limit a surveillance technique that had a nasty side effect of sweeping up communications to and from Americans. In a rare unprompted press statement, the NSA explained explained that it would halt “any upstream internet communications that are solely ‘about’ a foreign intelligence target,” restricting its… Read More



Amazon is shutting down its 'Underground Actually Free' program that gives away free Android apps

Apr 29, 12:11AM

 Amazon announced it will be shutting down its “Underground Actually Free” program, which offers customers free versions of Android apps that would typically cost money, including those that relied on in-app purchases but were otherwise free downloads. Though it promised long-term support when it debuted back in August 2015, Amazon today says the “Actually Free” program… Read More



Jack Dorsey just spent $9.5M buying more Twitter stock

Apr 29, 12:00AM

 Jack Dorsey is at it again — after purchasing $7 million in Twitter stock back in February, the Twitter CEO bought another $9.5 million today. After making his purchase, Dorsey posted the news on Facebook Twitter, sparking a one percent gain in the company’s share price in after-hours trading. According to an SEC filing, Dorsey purchased 574,002 shares of Twitter stock… Read More



Someone scraped 40,000 Tinder selfies to make a facial dataset for AI experiments

Apr 28, 11:21PM

 Tinder users have many motives for uploading their likeness to the dating app. But contributing a facial biometric to a downloadable data set for training convolutional neural networks probably wasn’t top of their list when they signed up to swipe. Read More



Tencent to open AI research center in Seattle

Apr 28, 11:03PM

 Chinese tech conglomerate Tencent will be opening a new AI research center in Seattle, according to The Information. The company has long had a core office in Palo Alto, but this will be its first major machine intelligence R&D effort in the country. Earlier this week Tencent announced that it would open its first data center in Silicon Valley. Read More



Yik Yak shuts down after Square paid $1 million for its engineers

Apr 28, 10:56PM

 Yik Yak co-founders Tyler Droll and Brooks Buffington published a farewell note to users on Friday, announcing they would shut down their once-popular anonymous social network this week. The app allowed people to connect with other users within a certain radius, and was widely marketed in and used on college campuses. Read More



Data management startup Rubrik confirms $180M round at a $1.3B valuation

Apr 28, 10:11PM

Data flying over group of laptops to illustrate data integration/sharing. Rubrik, a startup that provides data backup and recovery services for enterprises across both cloud and on-premises environments, has closed a $180 million round of funding that values the company at $1.3 billion. The news confirms a report we ran earlier this week noting that the company was raising between $150 million and $200 million. Read More



Auto site Carvana tumbles 26% in stock market debut

Apr 28, 9:28PM

 Carvana, the site for buying and selling cars, had a rough first day in the public markets. After pricing its IPO at $15 per share, it ended the day down 26 percent, at $11.10. Bankers typically recommend a price that would cause the shares to go up about 20 percent or so on the first day. But Carvana maximized every last dollar in its $225 million offering, at the cost of new investors. Read More



California orders RydenGo to shut down its website

Apr 28, 8:54PM

The non-operational RydenGo app On April 13, the state of California issued a cease and desist letter to RydenGo, saying that the company had to take down its website. The letter stated that the ride-hailing startup was operating without a permit from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The problem with the order, according to RydenGo CEO Michael Pappas, is that the company is not yet operating. Read More



Cloudera finishes up 20% in stock market debut

Apr 28, 8:15PM

 After pricing its IPO at $15 per share, Cloudera, the enterprise big data company, closed the day up more than 20 percent, at $18.09. This also is above the range of $12 to $14 for which Cloudera was preparing. Read More



Apple offers feedback on California's proposed driverless testing rule changes

Apr 28, 7:46PM

 Apple has offered feedback to the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) concerning its proposed new rule changes regarding autonomous vehicle testing on state roads. The formal feedback provided by Apple is relatively short and to the point, contained in a letter submitted to the DMV and embedded below, signed by Apple Director of Product Integrity Steve Kenner (who also authored… Read More



Microsoft hires former FTC figure for new privacy role

Apr 28, 7:42PM

 On Friday, Microsoft announced that it will create a new role for former Federal Trade Commissioner Julie Brill. Brill will take the lead on privacy, data protection and regulatory issues at Microsoft as the corporate vice president and deputy general counsel for its Privacy and Regulatory Affairs group. Read More



Tumblr just added a switch in the iOS Settings that lets you turn the porn back on

Apr 28, 7:23PM

 Here’s an interesting change: Tumblr’s iOS application just received an update which now lets you turn on or off adult-oriented, NSFW search results just by toggling a switch in iOS’s Settings. That’s right: you can now switch on or off the Tumblr porn with ease. Weirder still, Tumblr’s note about the change in the App Store update text says this was… Read More



Exploring Virtualities, a Utah VR arcade and theater startup taking over a dying mall

Apr 28, 7:17PM

 Virtualities founder Ryan Burningham has a new idea for abandoned retail spaces — VR. VR theaters and arcades like Virtualities are starting to pop up in warehouses and other empty spaces around the U.S., including Burningham’s startup, located in what used to be a Hot Topic on the second floor of the Gateway Mall on Salt Lake City’s west side. Read More



Elon Musk teases Tesla electric semi truck, up to 4 new Gigafactory locations

Apr 28, 7:03PM

 Elon Musk was on stage at the 2017 TED Conference in Vancouver on Friday, and he revealed some of his tunnel work and aspirations, but he also talked about a few ongoing Tesla projects he’s referenced before. The multi-CEO showed a shadowy image that gives us our first look at what his forthcoming electric Semi Truck will look like, and also let drop the suggestion that Tesla will… Read More



NSA ends controversial collection of Americans' emails that mention foreign targets

Apr 28, 6:53PM

 Privacy advocates are finally getting (a little bit) of what they want. Friday, The New York Times reported that the NSA will end its practice of collecting texts and emails by American citizens sent or received by individuals abroad that mention foreign surveillance targets. Read More



Watch how Elon Musk's Boring Company tunnels will move cars faster

Apr 28, 6:33PM

 Just what does Elon Musk’s Boring Company want to accomplish? This might be our clearest picture yet – a video shown during Musk’s TEDTalk from Friday morning, which includes a rendering of a future underground transit network where cars travel on crisscrossing layers of tunnels that include sleds shuttling vehicles around on rails at around 130 mph. Musk’s vision… Read More



Weekly Roundup: FCC's plan to revoke net neutrality, Uber defends tracking practices

Apr 28, 6:32PM

 Two new unicorns are born, Uber faces two lawsuits and the FCC unveils its proposal to revoke net neutrality. These are the top tech stories you need to know this week. Read More



Deep Sentinel raises $7.4M to bring deep learning to home security

Apr 28, 6:09PM

 Deep Sentinel, a home security startup, today announced that it had closed a $7.4 million Series A led by Shasta Ventures with participation from Bezos Expeditions, Lux Capital and UP2398. Founded by serial entrepreneur David Selinger, Deep Sentinel is betting that its emphasis on user experience can provide needed differentiation in the crowded space. Over tea in the… Read More



The Awair Glow is a nightlight that senses – and reacts to – bad air

Apr 28, 5:56PM

 There are plenty of air quality sensors out there but so far the Awair Glow is the only sensor I’ve found that can do something about nastiness in your environment. The Glow is a small plugin nightlight that connects to an iOS or Android phone and lets you turn on a fan or air purifier if certain conditions are met. The device is quite compact – it’s about as big as a… Read More




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