Moving towards a more autonomous computer-oriented news curation, Microsoft this week laid off all their editors and writers for Microsoft News. Leo says that the news site isn't going away, Microsoft is just going to rely on an artificial intelligence algorithm to curate the stories it posts. Leo also adds that both Apple and Google have gone the other way, believing that human curation increases engagement. Leo also says that Facebook is also relying on an algorithm, and its news page is just terrible.
Twitter announced this week that their employees can work from home and don't ever have to come back to the office. Leo says that this could be a new emerging trend, where companies allow ther employees to telecommute. The result could also be that people will be able to live where they can afford, rather than living in expensive areas. But it may also mean that companies will pay their employees less if they live in cheaper areas. But companies are also battling for the best talent, by offering amenities. Working from home will be part of that.
Two journalists who are very accurate when it comes to Apple rumors are predicting that the company is developing Augmented Reality Glasses. Ming Gi Quo says that Apple will launch the AR specs in 2022, while John Prosser thinks it'll happen next year in 2021. Leo likes the idea and finds AR far more compelling at virtual reality. It keeps you rooted in the real world.
Falling by one vote, Congress failed to pass protections that would prevent government officials from accessing your personal browser history without your knowledge or consent. And there is no warrant required. Now they can just go straight to your provider and ask for it. Leo says time is ideal to start using a virtual private network (VPN).
Leo spent the week having Zoom meetings with friends, family, and business associates. He even had a virtual college reunion, and at the end of the week, he's all zoomed out. Effective, yes. But he's eager to get back to talking to people face to face.
PC sales surged last quarter, as users obeying COVID-19 stay at home orders are working from home. The result is a banner quarter for Intel and sold out PCs everywhere.
Countries are using cellphone location data to not only enforce mandatory social distancing but also to see who patients have been in contact with the virus, to find out how that patient was infected. Other countries are using facial recognition to punish those in defiance of the orders and gathering together.
So while technology can be used for the greater good, namely trying to stem the tide of the Coronavirus outbreak, it can also be used as a dreadful tool for the surveillance state.
China has proposed that the internet adopt a new IP standard that would give governments greater control over its users. It has been met with support from Russia and Saudi Arabia, no surprise there. Leo says it also enables a government to use a new "shut up" feature that would enable them to lock out so-called "bad actors" or dissidents using the Internet to resist. But Leo says the only bad actors around are Governments seeking more control.
This week, Apple announced the new MacBook Air and iPad Pro. But while Apple has new devices for users to buy, all Apple Stores are closed, except in China. But Leo says that people really don't need to try the latest devices, they know what they're all about. The new MacBook Air is the first refresh of the laptop in a few years, and it's very thin and light. The new iPad Pro has a 50-80% speed increase with a faster processor. The camera has two lenses: wide and ultra-wide.