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Google and Facebook may be our best defenders against Big Brother

The big online companies are calling for urgent reforms to protect us from having data intercepted Over a few weeks’ worth of bedtimes in the summer of 1984, my dad read me Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell. Though the dystopian context would have been lost on nine-year old me, the…

Snowden document reveals key role of Yahoo, Microsoft and Google in NSA data collection

File shows number of intelligence reports being generated from data collected from the likes of Yahoo, Microsoft and Google The key role US telecoms and internet companies play in National Security Agency surveillance programs is detailed in a top-secret document provided to the Guardian by whistleblower Edward Snowden and published…

San Diego woman ticketed for driving while wearing Google Glass

Traffic citation: Google Glass-ing while driving (via The Christian Science Monitor) Google Glass team member Salil Pandit wears Google Glasses at a booth at Google I/O 2013 in San Francisco, Wednesday. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu) Sunglasses may be necessary eyewear for driving, but Google Glasses? Wearing the smart spectacles could land…

NSA compromised Yahoo and Google data centers

The US National Security Agency has tapped into key communications links from Yahoo and Google data centers around the world, the Washington Post reported Wednesday. The Post, citing documents obtained from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden and interviews with officials, said the program can collect data at will from hundreds…

U.S. spying in Europe: Will it backfire on Google and Facebook?

US spying in Europe: Will it backfire on Google and Facebook? (via The Christian Science Monitor) German Chancellor Angela Merkel (r.) and French President François Hollande attend a European Union leaders summit in Brussels Thursday. German and French accusations that the United States has run spying operations in their countries…

Google files patent for gesture-activated car controls

Distracted driving is the latest and greatest menace to the children of America, and automakers are both morally and legally obligated to reduce distractions to the driving experience. Voice commands…  …

How to opt out of Google’s shared endorsements

How To Opt Out of Google’s Shared Endorsements (via EFF) Google recently announced an update to its Terms of Service, focused on displaying your profile name and photo next to advertisements and reviews. The new feature, which goes into effect on November 11, is called Shared Endorsements and will allow…

Surprised? Drivers would rather buy a self-driving car from Google than Ford

Drivers would rather buy a self-driving car from Google than Ford (via The Inquirer) RESEARCH HAS FOUND that drivers would rather buy a self-driving car from Google than from a carmaker like Ford. The KPMG study “Self Driving Cars: Are We Ready?” was based on a combination of surveys and…

Google wants to patent how to split a restaurant check

Splitting a check after a big group meal can be a pain-in-the-neck problem. But is it a Google-level conundrum? A handful of Google engineers appear to think so. According to a patent application made public Thursday, six New York-area Google employees want a patent on a method for “tracking and…

E.U. nears anti-trust deal with Google

The E.U. executive hopes to close a high-stakes anti-trust dispute with Internet giant Google by next spring, Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said on Tuesday, with a settlement seeming increasingly possible. The Commission, the E.U.’s executive, has accused Google of giving unfair preference in its search results to its own services,…

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