30 People Who Downloaded Their Google Data Share The Most Unsettling Things Theyve Found

There are times when we all get a tiny bit paranoid that somebody — like the Illuminati, the world government, a clandestine spy organization or an alien mothership — is secretly watching us. Keeping tabs on us. Noting down every single, tiny, little thing that we do. [Looks around, peers out of the window, glances at the sky]. As it turns out, there’s no need to worry about secret groups collecting information on us because it’s actually happening every single day, right under our noses and in our pockets. Some internet users did a very scary thing — they downloaded their Google here. ——————— HALO462: ——————— Not so much that it was stored info, but I was cooking dinner when …

We Illustrated 6 People Who Dreamed Their Breakthrough Ideas

A comfy bed and a good night’s sleep are essential when it comes to brain function. Slipping into a freshly made bed with lush, fresh bedding really can set the tone for how easily you’ll settle into a peaceful slumber. Once you drift off to sleep, there really is no limit to where your dreams may take you. Sometimes unbelievable and seemingly impossible, your dreams really can have a huge impact; changing your mind on something you were sure you were certain of, making you question what you once knew – the power of dreams can be hugely underestimated. The Mill Shop wanted to explore what impact dreams have had on the world over the years. We’re not talking daydreams …

Now is a good time to review your Nest Cam security settings

With the spread of smart home surveillance cameras, more people than ever are taking steps to protect their homes and families.But the same technology used to keep an eye out for potential dangers can also be used to spy on their owners if not properly secured. Last week, Google admitted that a bug had allowed used Nest cameras to be susceptible to spying. The errorallowed those who bought a used camera to be spied on by their previous owner even if the device had been wiped. The problem was quickly addressed, but how long it had been going on and how many devices were breached is unknown. Google’s Nest surveillance cameras are some of the most popular on the market, …

Symphony, a messaging app thats been a hit with Wall Street, raises $165M at a $1.4B valuation

Slack’s rapid rise and upcoming IPO are clear signs of the ripe opportunity to be had in the field of enterprise messaging. Today, a startup that’s built a messaging product specifically for the financial services vertical is also proving that out. Symphony, which offers secure messaging and other collaboration tools for bankers and those who work with them, is today announcing that it has raised $165 million. With this round, Symphony’s valuation now tops $1.4 billion. The funding comes from Standard Chartered and MUFG Innovation Partners (a division of Mitsubishi that makes fintech investments), and also included other (unnamed) current and new investors. Symphony has now raised a very hefty $460 million, with previous backers including Google, Lakestar, Natixis, Societe Generale, UBS, …

Break Up Big Tech? Some Say Not So Fast

For years, the US government stood by as big tech companies like Facebook and Google growth hacked and gobbled up competitors on their way to dominance, with barely a mention of “anticompetitive” concerns. But that lax attitude is changing. Word continued to leak this week about possible antitrust investigations by the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission, who reportedly divvied up companies like a couple might divide household chores. (The DOJ calls dibs on Google and Apple, while the FTC gets Facebook and Amazon.) House Democrats, meanwhile, are launching an antitrust probe of their own over competition in the tech industry more broadly. It’s too soon to tell whether any of this activity will lead to meaningful regulation, or …

The New Antitrust Scrutiny Should Worry Silicon Valley

Many Americans think Big Tech and Silicon Valley have too much power and need to be reigned in. Six weeks ago, it was hard to believe Washington had the political will to do much about that. Facebook had just said it would take a charge of up to $5 billion for an expected Federal Trade Commission fine related to its role in the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The reaction: Facebook’s stock jumped 6 percent to its highest price in nine months. The potential fine seemed manageable; Facebook has reported more than $5 billion in profit in some quarters. Investors concluded that regulators would, at most, give the company a hard slap on the wrist. Americans are used to Washington punting on …

Big Tech: Breaking Us Up Will Only Help China

Over the past week, both Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt made the same appeal to American nationalism, with differing degrees of subtlety: Breaking up Big Tech will only help China. It’s a politically expedient plea as calls for regulating tech intensify amid growing concern about China’s tech prowess and an escalating US-China trade war. But the argument rests on the idea that what’s good for Facebook and Google is good for America. It also ignores how Silicon Valley is simultaneously seeking growth through partnerships with some of those same Chinese competitors, such as Google’s investment in JD.com and reported talks with Tencent to bring Google Cloud to China. Sandberg made her case against …

Google Has Stored Some Passwords in Plaintext Since 2005

It happened again: Google announced today that it's the latest tech giant to have accidentally stored user passwords unprotected in plaintext. G Suite users, pay attention. Google says that the bug affected "a small percentage of G Suite users," meaning it does not impact individual consumer accounts, but does affect some business and corporate accounts, which have their own risks and sensitivities. The company typically stores passwords on its servers in a cryptographically scrambled state known as a hash. But a bug in G Suite's password recovery feature for administrators caused unprotected passwords to be stored in the infrastructure of a control panel, called the admin console. Google has disabled the features that contained the bug. Before it did so, …

What to Expect at I/O As Google’s Sprawling Dominion Grows

Spring is in the air, the anthuriums are in bloom, and Sundar Pichai is sequestered away somewhere in Mountain View, preparing for another Google I/O. The annual developer conference, which begins the morning of May 7, gives Google three days to demonstrate its vision for the future—and convince the coders in the audience to help build it. Remember, Google isn't just a search giant anymore. It makes hardware and a popular voice assistant. It delivers your email and manages your maps. It runs the most popular mobile phone operating system in the world. It builds self-driving cars and delivery drones. The developer conference is Google's chance to talk about all of this, showing the world just what it can do …

Some reassuring data for those worried unicorns are wrecking the Bay Area

Joanna Glasner With the exception of Intel, all of these companies have a double-digit percentage of employees at headquarters, so it’s not as if they’re leaving town. However, if you’re a new hire at Silicon Valley’s most valuable companies, it appears chances are greater that you’ll be based outside of headquarters. Tesla, meanwhile, is somewhat of a unique case. The company is based in Palo Alto, but doesn’t crack the city’s list of top 10 employers. In nearby Fremont, Calif., however, Tesla is the largest city employer, with roughly 10,000 reportedly working at its auto plant there.(Tesla has about 49,000 employees globally.) Unicorns flock to San Fran, workers less so High-valuation private and recently public tech companies can also be pretty …

The Pentagon Wants Your Thoughts About AI but May Not Listen

In February, the Pentagon unveiled an expansive new artificial intelligence strategy that promised the technology would be used to enhance everything the department does, from killing enemies to treating injured soldiers. It said an Obama-era advisory board packed with representatives of the tech industry would help craft guidelines to ensure the technology’s power was used ethically. In the heart of Silicon Valley on Thursday, that board asked the public for advice. It got an earful—from tech executives, advocacy groups, AI researchers, and veterans, among others. Many were wary of the Pentagon’s AI ambitions and urged the board to lay down rules that would subject the department’s AI projects to close controls and scrutiny. “You have the potential of large benefits, …

17 Best Weekend Deals on Laptops, 4K TVs, and More

We recently ended our week-long investigation into How We Reproduce—or, as it turns out, how we don't. In addition to covering a few forms of contraception in our fertility and pregnancy gear roundup, we also took a look at advances in male contraception and gleefully childfree forums. The good news is that if you're not spending money on baby bottles and strollers, then you have plenty left in your pocket for Dell's March Madness sale. If you've been looking for an affordable smart speaker, Amazon's Echo and Fire Tablet sale ends today. We also have a few other great bargains on some of our favorite action camera, smart TVs, and more. (Note: When you buy something using the retail links …

Remote workers and nomads represent the next tech hub

Amid calls for a dozen different global cities to replace Silicon Valley — Austin, Beijing, London, New York — nobody has yet nominated “nowhere.” But it’s now a possibility. There are two trends to unpack here. The first is startups that are fully, or almost fully, remote, with employees distributed around the world. There’s a growing list of significant companies in this category: Automattic, Buffer, GitLab, Invision, Toptal and Zapier all have from 100 to nearly 1,000 remote employees. The second trend is nomadic founders with no fixed location. For a generation of founders, moving to Silicon Valley was de rigueur. Later, the emergence of accelerators and investors worldwide allowed a wider range of potential home bases. But now there’s …

The EU Hits Google With a Third Billion-Dollar Fine. So What?

European officials Wednesday fined Google €1.49 billion ($1.7 billion) for more than a decade of abusive practices in how it brokered online ads for other websites like newspapers, blogs, and travel aggregators. This is the third billion-dollar antitrust penalty levied against Google by the European Commission, which has fined the company more than $9 billion for anticompetitive practices since 2017. Some critics were quick to point out that the fines don’t seem to have eroded Google’s dominance. But the reaction also shows how much the debate around antitrust has intensified in just a few years, from fear that enforcement would stifle innovation to concern that even massive fines provide an insufficient check on dominant tech giants. As part of Commissioner …

How Google Influences the Conversation in Washington

A few days after last year’s midterm election, a Google policy manager and lobbyist sent an email to a congressional staffer with a link to a blog post on the right-wing news site Red State, written under the name The Real DC. In the post, the author accuses Google’s competitor Yelp of prodding President Trump to tweet a “professionally designed” video about Google’s alleged bias, which The Real DC calls “fake news” because it “bears many similarities” to content produced by Yelp. In the email, a copy of which was viewed by WIRED, Ed An, the Google lobbyist, said he does not typically share articles from Red State but thought the staffer would find this one interesting. Neither Red State, …

Venture investors and startup execs say they dont need Elizabeth Warren to defend them from big tech

Responding to Elizabeth Warren’s call to regulate and break up some of the nation’s largest technology companies, the venture capitalists that invest in technology companies are advising the presidential hopeful to move slowly and not break anything. Warren’s plan called for regulators to be appointed to oversee the unwinding of several acquisitions that were critical to the development of the core technology that make Alphabet’s Google and the social media giant Facebook so profitable… and Zappos. Warren also wanted regulation in place that would block companies making over $25 billion that operate as social media or search platforms or marketplaces from owning companies that also sell services on those marketplaces. As a whole, venture capitalists viewing the policy were underwhelmed. …