Science & Technology





Data-sharing at heart of Facebook's latest scandal isn't an anomaly — it's how Facebook does business

Facebook's business model has always been simple: acquire as much personal information from users as possible, then find a way to make money off of it.

For more than a decade, it proved to be a remarkably successful strategy, bringing to the social platform 2 billion monthly users to friend, feud and play Farmville.

But as the year comes to a ...Read more

Google misleads kids and parents about apps, complaint filed with FTC says

Accusing Google of misleading practices about kids' apps, nearly two dozen child- and consumer-advocacy groups on Wednesday asked the FTC to investigate the Android maker.

In a complaint filed with the Federal Trade Commission, the groups said many apps included in the Family section of Google Play engage in prohibited targeted advertising, ...Read more

These 30-year-old tech investors just brought a $50M fund to San Diego

Young blood is stepping into San Diego's tech scene with the arrival of a new VC fund. The venture capitalists -- all in their 30s and younger -- have launched with $50 million in cash to invest in software startups.

The fund, called Blueprint Equity, is led by founders Bobby Ocampo, 33, and Sheldon Lewis, 34. The duo met more than a decade ago...Read more

Tech Q&A: Browser video, Web link issues easily fixed

Q: I mainly use the Google Chrome browser on my Windows 10 PC. But sometimes video won't play on that browser, and I have to switch to Mozilla Firefox. Sometimes web links won't work on one of those browsers, but they do work on the Microsoft Edge browser. I'd rather just use one browser; where can I get one that works for everything?

-- Mark ...Read more

3M to buy M*Modal healthcare software firm for $1 billion

3M Co. will acquire the healthcare technology business of MModal for about $1 billion, officials announced Wednesday.

The deal is expected to give Maplewood, Minn.-based 3M a healthcare technology firm specializing in cloud-based, conversational artificial intelligence systems that help physicians capture patient information so they can spend ...Read more

Dog kennel designed by Ford blocks fireworks, thunder noise

Ford Motor Co. has developed a prototype quiet kennel for dogs by using noise-cancellation technology created for high-end vehicles sold in Europe.

For years, veterinarians have urged people to find quiet space for their pets because holiday fireworks can terrify the animals. They run away, get hit by cars, develop anxiety and stress that can ...Read more

Facebook, Google to pay Washington $450,000 to settle lawsuits over political-ad transparency

Tech giants Facebook and Google will pay Washington state more than $450,000 to settle twin lawsuits filed by Attorney General Bob Ferguson accusing the companies of failure to abide by state laws on political advertising transparency.

In the settlements, filed Tuesday in King County Superior Court, the companies did not admit any violations of...Read more

Logging off for the day: NAACP calls for Tuesday boycott of Facebook

If you haven't logged off of Facebook yet today, the NAACP would like you to do so -- now.

The organization took to its website and Twitter page to call for everyone to boycott not just Facebook, but also Instagram and the WhatsApp messaging platform, after a report from a Senate committee on Monday said that Russia's Internet Research Agency (...Read more

GE lawsuit accuses Uptake of 'ruthless scheme to poach' executives and trade secrets

Uptake Technologies allegedly has engaged in a "ruthless scheme to poach" executives and trade secrets from General Electric, according to a lawsuit the struggling conglomerate filed Monday against the Chicago-based data analytics firm.

The lawsuit says the alleged "scheme" started roughly a year ago, after Caterpillar and another company ended...Read more

Sound Advice: TCL 55-inch 5 Series 4K Roku TV a perfect under-$500 pick

Q. We want to buy televisions for our kids and their families this Christmas. We have $500 per television budgeted and would like at least a 50-inch screen size. Any recommendations?

-- L. A., San Antonio, Texas

A. Go straight to the TCL 55-inch 5 Series 4K Roku TV, $449. I love finding exceptional values for my readers, and this is one of ...Read more

Mixed signals for the solar industry as 2018 wraps up

Third quarter numbers delivered a combination of good news and bad news for the California solar industry, echoing a pattern seen on the national stage as the sector confronts growing pains that include tariffs recently put into place by the Trump administration.

California installed 462 megawatts of solar between July and September -- ...Read more

Google announces $1 billion expansion in New York City

Google announced Monday that it will spend more than $1 billion to build a new campus in New York City, a major expansion that could add more than 7,000 jobs to the area.

The announcement comes just days after Apple said it will build new offices across the United States, a plan that includes adding hundreds of jobs in New York. said...Read more

In pursuit of new Austin campus, Apple took the un-Amazon path

Fifteen months ago, online retailer Amazon set off the biggest economic development competition in U.S. history, igniting a media firestorm when it opened public bidding for its $5 billion second headquarters project, dubbed HQ2. Amazon invited every North American city to submit a proposal, and in January the company -- in almost reality TV-...Read more

To settle a beach violation, Napster founder creates YourCoast app

LOS ANGELES -- When a seaside property owner blocks beach access with a gate, the California Coastal Commission can order it removed.

When a developer builds along the coast without permission, the agency can rain down millions in fines.

But when tech billionaire Sean Parker chose a wedding venue in violation of the California Coastal Act, the...Read more

How many passwords can you remember? Get ready to remember more

WASHINGTON -- Got too many passwords to remember? Just wait. It's going to get a lot worse.

Average consumers five years from now may face double the demands for passwords, said Emmanuel Schalit, chief executive of Dashlane, a consumer password security company.

Schalit and other experts predict that passwords will explode in further use ...Read more

Apple is the latest tech giant looking for a home away from home

Apple will expand its workforce at new and existing offices across the country and plans to build a billion-dollar campus for 5,000 additional employees in Austin, Texas.

Though Austin will land the biggest part of the Silicon Valley giant's expansion, the Cupertino company also announced plans Thursday to open additional offices in Culver City...Read more

Apple says it will establish a new location in San Diego, add 1,000 jobs over three years

Apple said Thursday that it plans to expand in San Diego, bringing 1,000 employees to the local workforce over the next three years.

The Cupertino iPhone maker, which is in a bitter legal fight with Qualcomm over patent fees, made the announcement as part of its unveiling of a new $1 billion campus in Austin, Texas.

Apple said it was ...Read more

United Airlines could power jets with biofuel made from trash

A new plant in Gary, Ind., plans to turn hundreds of thousands of tons of trash into fuel, some of which could end up powering United Airlines' planes.

California-based Fulcrum BioEnergy on Thursday announced plans for the $600 million alternative fuel plant in Gary. Construction is not expected to start until 2020. But once operations begin, ...Read more

Apple plans new $1 billion campus, 5,000 more jobs for Austin, Texas

AUSTIN, Texas -- Apple Inc. is planning to spend $1 billion to build a new 133-acre corporate campus in North Austin that initially will employ up to 5,000 people, cementing Austin's status as the high-tech company's largest hub outside of its California headquarters.

The facility -- which will be less than a mile from Apple's existing main ...Read more

A tiny button that can save you from sunburn — Northwestern researchers release a next-wave UV sensor

Things your phone probably reminds you of: Your mother's birthday. Your kid's doctor appointment. That thing Beyonce said on Twitter. The new episode of "The Romanoffs." Email. News headlines.

Now, thanks to scientists at Northwestern University's Center on Bio-Integrated Electronics, your phone can also tell you exactly how much sunlight your ...Read more

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