Tuesday, March 14, 2017

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Apple hires security researcher Jonathan Zdziarski

Mar 14, 9:38PM

 Jonathan Zdziarski has been a leading expert on Apple and iOS security and forensics for years — and now he’s taking his expertise inside the company. Zdziarski, who has written several books on iOS and was an outspoken supporter of Apple during its battle with the FBI last year, announced on his blog that he’s joining Apple’s Security Engineering and Architecture team… Read More

LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman joins Microsoft's board

Mar 14, 9:25PM

 LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman announced today that he’s joined the board of directors at Microsoft. This follows Microsoft’s $26.2 billion acquisition of LinkedIn last year. When the deal closed, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner said the company’s day-to-day operations would “essentially remain unchanged,” but he also noted a number of areas (like integrating… Read More

Interactive fiction and the origins of the conversational interface

Mar 14, 9:00PM

 It’s 2017, and conversational interfaces (people talking with machines the same way they talk to other people) are everywhere. Siri has become a household name. Taco Bell lets you order tacos over Slack. It feels like we may spend more time talking to computers than to one another in just a few short years. How did we get to this point? Read More

Bill Maris's next gig after GV is a $100 million health and biotech fund

Mar 14, 8:07PM

 It was happening, then it wasn’t — but now it seems Bill Maris’s venture fund might actually be more than vaporware. Maris, founder of Google Ventures, now called GV, is raising money again for a new health-care, biotech, and tech-focused venture capital fund, according to sources familiar with the matter. What was initially thought to be a $230 million fund has… Read More

Hayo's Kinect-like sensor for your home now has an API

Mar 14, 5:56PM

 Sometimes I miss the Kinect. It was such a breakthrough device, yet it didn’t go anywhere. But it inspired a lot of entrepreneurs, including the team behind Hayo. This new device lets you set up virtual buttons on a table to control all your connected objects. Hayo recently announced there will be an API so developers can play with the company’s image recognition technology. Read More

Sift raises $1.5 million to unlock your credit cards

Mar 14, 5:39PM

 Did you know that your credit cards can do amazing things? Aside from drawing you into crippling debt while forcing you to be part of the vast cycle of economic servitude, credit cards also offer cash-back on purchases, protection on items you buy and refunds! That’s what Sift wants to help you unlock. Read More

Snapchat launches Bitmoji widget chat shortcuts for your home screen

Mar 14, 5:33PM

 Snapchat is doubling down on private messaging as Instagram and Facebook Messenger clone and steal usage from its Stories feature. Now you can instantly start chatting with your best friends on Snapchat. Read More

Zenefits founder Parker Conrad takes another crack at HR onboarding

Mar 14, 5:00PM

 Parker Conrad’s last venture at Zenefits didn’t end so well, what with his departure as CEO and the company having to re-orient itself. But he’s once again starting a company that will figure out how to build an employee system of record and management, starting off with smoothing out the process of onboarding employees and focusing on other major life events for those employees. Read More

Join us at the TC Include Pitch Practice on April 6 in Manhattan

Mar 14, 5:00PM

 To everyone in the five boroughs and beyond, mark your calendars: TechCrunch is set to take Manhattan like so many tech-obsessed Muppets. On April 6, the team will be launching our first TC Takes Manhattan event for an all-day techstravaganza, starting with the TC Include Interactive Pitch Practice at 5:30PM, at WeWork Grand Central. The kickoff event will be a combination mixer and pitch… Read More

Nintendo releases three-part video series about that insanely good Zelda game

Mar 14, 4:48PM

 Nintendo shared on its YouTube channel three behind-the-scenes videos about Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Many thought the Nintendo Switch had a pretty thin launch lineup with Zelda: Breath of the Wild as the only big production. But anybody around you who owns a Switch will tell you that it’s an amazing game. Read More

VICE is the latest to produce original shows for Snapchat, starting with a dating series

Mar 14, 4:34PM

 Like Twitter, Snapchat’s pitch is that it’s more than just a social sharing and messaging app — it’s a place to consume media, too. Today, the company is expanding its original content lineup via a new deal with VICE, which will see the media company producing original shows for Snapchat. This kicks off with a VICELAND-produced series called “Hungry Hearts… Read More

PegaSwitch is an easy exploit toolkit for the Nintendo Switch

Mar 14, 4:27PM

 A day after the world got confused whether or not the Switch was truly hacked, a group of programmers have released PegaSwitch, a “toolkit” that allows for limited code execution, allowing users to execute some unsigned code on the Switch. To be clear, this is not a full jailbreak but instead a proof-of-concept that could lead to a jailbreak. Read More

Lucid Motors and Local Motors will tell us how to make modern cars at Disrupt NY 2017

Mar 14, 4:22PM

 The auto industry is one of the hardest to break into as a vehicle maker, so it’s great that we have onstage at Disrupt NY 2017 in May two young companies working in that space to talk us through the process of being new in a field where the dominant players haven’t changed much in almost a century. Read More

ProducePay raises $77 million in debt and equity to revolutionize farm financing

Mar 14, 4:04PM

 When Pablo Borquez Schwarzbeck was growing up he always loved the work he saw going on around his family’s farm. But without the aptitude for it, Schwarzbeck chose to go the business school route. Now, with his Los Angeles-based startup ProducePay, Schwarzbeck says he’s giving back to the communities that nurtured him. His company has just raised $77 million in equity and debt… Read More

You can now send and request money in Gmail on Android

Mar 14, 4:00PM

 Google Wallet has been integrated into Gmail on the web since 2013, but today Google is rolling out a new integration on mobile. Starting today, users of the Gmail app on Android will be able to send or request money with anyone, including those who don’t have a Gmail address, with just a tap. Read More

Teams, Microsoft's Slack rival, opens to all Office 365 users

Mar 14, 3:33PM

 After unveiling a limited preview of Teams in November last year, Microsoft is now rolling out its collaboration and communication platform, positioned as a rival to Slack, more widely: Teams is now available, and free, for all 85 million monthly active users of Office 365, Microsoft’s suite of cloud services and apps as a web app and native apps for Windows, iOS and Android. Read More

Tag Heuer maintains its commitment to Android Wear with a $1,600 modular smartwatch

Mar 14, 3:12PM

 Emboldened by the surprise success of its $1,500 Connected smartwatch, Tag Heuer is back with something even more expensive. Starting at around $1,650, the Connected Modular 45 once again finds the luxury Swiss watchmaker teaming up with Google and Intel, and this time living up to the “avant-garde” bit of the company’s tagline a touch more with a truly modular design. Read More

Delivery management platform Bringg raises $10 million to help any business take on Amazon

Mar 14, 2:49PM

 Bringg, a startup taking advantage of the shift toward faster, more transparent on-demand delivery, has raised an additional $10 million in Series B funding, the company announced this morning. The funding was led by Aleph VC, and includes participation from Coca-Cola and prior investor Pereg Ventures. Read More

Euronet outbids Alibaba's Ant Financial with $1 billion offer for MoneyGram

Mar 14, 2:36PM

 Alibaba’s conquest to own a piece of the global money transfer industry just suffered a huge blow after Euronet outbid its fintech affiliate business for the proposed acquisition of MoneyGram, a popular option for cross-border money transfers. Read More

Okta IPO filing marks public market tipping point for SaaS Vendors

Mar 14, 2:34PM

Login. Username and Password on Computer Screen When Okta, the unicorn cloud identity management company, filed its S-1 IPO paperwork yesterday, it was the latest pure-cloud subscription-based company to go public. Wall Street could finally be ready to accept that model and the long path to profitability that tends to be part and parcel of this approach. Read More

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