Stories for Feb. 21, 2014
In Brief

Wi-Fi not cutting it for you on Nvidia’s Note 7 tablet? You’ll soon be able buy an LTE model of what the company calls the world’s speediest 7-inch Android tablet. Expect to pay $299 — a $100 premium over the current Wi-Fi model — when the new model arrives in the second quarter. The LTE service is a bit of a win for Nvidia which has been working on mobile broadband modems to better compete with Qualcomm in phones and tablets. When it arrives, the new LTE model will run on Android 4.4.2, which is now getting pushed out to the Note 7 Wi-Fi model.

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In Brief

Google has bought London security startup spider.io, which deals in detecting ad fraud. Founder Douglas de Jager and his small team specialize in combating scams like hidden display ad inventory and click fraud botnets — swarms of computers that have been quietly co-opted by hackers to generate masses of click-throughs on website ads, driving revenue to the website owner without driving customers to the advertiser. Google said it will put the spider.io technology to use in its video and display ad products to give advertisers and publishers “a clearer, cleaner picture of what campaigns and media are truly delivering strong results.”

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Stories for Feb. 20, 2014

Citizen journalism
photo: Flickr / Petteri Sulonen

The value of social-media networks such as Twitter and Facebook becomes even more obvious during crises like the uprisings and anti-government demonstrations in Ukraine and Venezuela, where both have become a lifeline of real-time information for residents and expatriates alike Read more »

In Brief

On Thursday, Facebook announced via a post on its engineering page that it has revamped the Thrift framework it built in 2006 (which has since become an Apache project) and is re-releasing it as open source code via GitHub under the fbthrift moniker. Thrift was created as a tool for helping build distributed applications that need to call different services written in different languages. Although it has been very useful, the post’s author explains, Facebook and other Thrift users ran into performance issues and feature deficiencies that have been resolved with fbthrift.

In Brief

NASA’s Curiosity rover drives over the rocky surface of Mars on aluminum wheels, which are becoming pockmarked with holes much faster than predicted. This week, NASA decided to go ahead and drive the rover backward for 329 feet; a technique developed during testing on Earth to better preserve the wheels. The agency also reassessed Curiosity’s route to Mount Sharp, where the rover is expected to find water-related minerals, to be easier on the aluminum.

In Brief

Manoj Saxena, the former head of IBM’s Watson business unit has joined The Entrepreneur’s Fund, a Silicon Valley venture firm that makes early stage investments. There Saxena will lead investments in cognitive computing apps, especially those built on the Watson data analytics platform. We’ve covered the launch of cognition as a service and machine learning in multiple stories, and can’t wait to see those investments. Saxena will also act as advisor to IBM’s own Watson fund and co-invest with it.

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