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Google lends its machine-learning tool to fight deforestation

Google’s machine-learning tool is being used to detect and combat illegal deforestation

The news:  Rainforest Connection, a San Francisco nonprofit, has developed a cheap, rigorous acoustic monitoring system made from modified cell phones and solar panels.… Read more

Source: Image credit:
  • Rainforest Connection

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Mark Zuckerberg (finally) admits huge data scandal is “a breach of trust” between Facebook and its users

But the Facebook CEO’s mea culpa is way too little and way too late.

The news: Mark Zuckerberg finally broke his silence over a massive data scandal that had been festering for days. The furor was triggered by revelations that Cambridge Analytica (CA),… Read more

Editor's Pick

AI can spot signs of Alzheimer’s before your family does

When David Graham wakes up in the morning, the flat white box that’s Velcroed to the wall of his room in Robbie’s Place, an assisted living facility in Marlborough, Massachusetts, begins recording his every movement.

It knows when he gets out of bed,...

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Reviews on Turkopticon, a website for Amazon Mechanical Turk workers, from 2014 say requests from Aleksandr Kogan violated Amazon’s policy.

The scientist who gave Cambridge Analytica its Facebook data got lousy reviews online

Aleksandr Kogan, a Cambridge University academic, has long looked fishy to Amazon Mechanical Turk workers. They reviewed him negatively on a site called Turkopticon, complaining that his requests violated the service’s policy by asking them to provide… Read more

Image credit:
  • Turkopticon

Industrialization of ancient DNA search sets off a “bone rush”

In a race to make gene discoveries about the ancient past, scientists have set up an “industrial” process to extract DNA from old human bones unearthed in caves and pulled from museum collections.

Quality control: The work happens in a clean lab with… Read more

Image credit:
  • Photo by hairymuseummat modified by DrMikeBaxter/Wikimedia Commons
Mark Zuckerberg is MIA

The latest on Facebook’s data scandal: Zuckerberg speaks, lawsuits, and ignored whistleblowers

And all the while the firm’s CEO remains hugely conspicuous by his absence.

Backstory: In case you missed it, Facebook is embroiled in a huge scandal because of the way its users’ data was shared with Cambridge Analytica, a firm that provided data to… Read more

Image credit:
  • Facebook / Jamie Condliffe
Shipping containers

Trump is reportedly preparing new ways to block China’s interest in American tech

The White House may introduce new measures this week to make it harder for China to import to, and invest in, the US.

The news:  The Wall Street Journal says America will introduce “tariffs on imports [aimed at China] worth at least $30 billion” tomorrow.… Read more

Source: Image credit:
  • Chutter Snap | Unsplash

Editor's Pick

The US military wants AI to dream up weird new helicopters

AI can already dream up imaginary celebrities, so perhaps it can help the Army imagine revolutionary new engine parts or aircraft, too.

That’s the goal of a new project from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the research wing of the...

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Apple Watch

Apple Watches aren’t so great at detecting irregular heartbeats yet

Researchers used data from Apple Watches and a machine-learning algorithm to see if they could identify heart problems in smart-watch wearers.

The study: A team from the University of California, San Francisco, collected heart-rate and step-count data… Read more

Image credit:
  • Apple
Water scarcity

Water scarcity could affect 5 billion people by 2050

A new report claims that half of the world’s population may struggle to quench its thirst in the coming decades.

The news:  UNESCO’s new World Water Development Report says that 3.6 billion people currently live in places that can suffer from water scarcity… Read more

Image credit:
  • Jeremy Brooks | Flickr