Technology

Apple Vision Pro Review: First Headset Lacks Polish and Purpose
Technology

Apple Vision Pro Review: First Headset Lacks Polish and Purpose

About 17 years ago, Steve Jobs took the stage at a San Francisco convention center and said he was introducing three products: an iPod, a phone and an internet browser.“These are not three separate devices,” he said. “This is one device, and we are calling it iPhone.”At $500, the first iPhone was relatively expensive, but I was eager to dump my mediocre Motorola flip phone and splurge. There were flaws — including sluggish cellular internet speeds. But the iPhone delivered on its promises.Over the last week, I’ve had a very different experience with a new first-generation product from Apple: the Vision Pro, a virtual reality headset that resembles a pair of ski goggles. The $3,500 wearable computer, which was released Friday, uses cameras so you can see the outside world while juggling app...
Meta Calls for Industry Effort to Label A.I.-Generated Content
Technology

Meta Calls for Industry Effort to Label A.I.-Generated Content

Last month at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Nick Clegg, president of global affairs at Meta, called a nascent effort to detect artificially generated content “the most urgent task” facing the tech industry today.On Tuesday, Mr. Clegg proposed a solution. Meta said it would promote technological standards that companies across the industry could use to recognize markers in photo, video and audio material that would signal that the content was generated using artificial intelligence.The standards could allow social media companies to quickly identify content generated with A.I. that has been posted to their platforms and allow them to add a label to that material. If adopted widely, the standards could help identify A.I.-generated content from companies like Google, OpenAI ...
Anxiety, Mood Swings and Sleepless Nights: Life Near a Bitcoin Mine
Technology

Anxiety, Mood Swings and Sleepless Nights: Life Near a Bitcoin Mine

On a sweltering July evening, the din from thousands of computers mining for Bitcoins pierced the night. Nearby, Matt Brown, a member of the Arkansas legislature, monitored the noise alongside a local magistrate.As the two men investigated complaints about the operation, Mr. Brown said, a security guard for the mine loaded rounds into an AR-15-style assault rifle that had been stored in a car.“He wanted to make sure that we knew he had his gun — that we knew it was loaded,” Mr. Brown, a Republican, said in an interview.The Bitcoin outfit here, 45 minutes north of Little Rock, is one of three sites in Arkansas owned by a network of companies embroiled in tense disputes with residents, who say the noise generated by computers performing trillions of calculations per second ruins lives, lower...
He’s Lost His Marriage, His Followers and His Lamborghini
Technology

He’s Lost His Marriage, His Followers and His Lamborghini

With its streamlined curves and glow-in-the-dark sound system, the silver Lamborghini Huracán Performante was the stuff of teenage fantasy: $350,000 of aerodynamic metals and lightweight upholstery, packed into a taut and powerful body. Ben Armstrong loved it dearly.When he started shopping for a Lamborghini, Mr. Armstrong, a cryptocurrency evangelist with more than one million YouTube subscribers, worried that he’d have to spend months searching. “I think I have to go to Italy to get the Lambo I want,” he texted a business partner. “I don’t want to compromise.” But fate smiled on him. In the fall of 2021, a car dealership in Charlotte, N.C., shipped the Huracán to Mr. Armstrong’s production studio in an Atlanta suburb.As the Lamborghini was lowered from a delivery truck, Mr. Armstrong, be...
Is TikTok Over? – The New York Times
Technology

Is TikTok Over? – The New York Times

It all underscores a fundamental TikTok issue that remains unsolved: There hasn’t yet been an evolution in optimal content form. The narrative styles that will work best in this format haven’t been honed yet, at least not by professionals. For an app that claims a lot of attention, it doesn’t demand much brainpower. That leaves TikTok vulnerable to the moments when viewers, to put it simply, snap out of it.My breaking point has been approaching for months, and TikTok appears to sense my looming reluctance. It’s been trying to lure me in with multipart videos about abandoned pets (dark); footage of synchronized roller-skating teams (cute); durational videos on hoof cleaning and art conservation (fascinating, sure); and, of course, that one absurdist Turkish barber/facialist/masseur (sign me...
Elon Musk’s Tesla Pay Package Is Struck Down by Judge
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Elon Musk’s Tesla Pay Package Is Struck Down by Judge

A Delaware judge ruled on Tuesday in favor of Tesla shareholders who sued to block the pay package that helped make Elon Musk, the carmaker’s chief executive, a billionaire many times over and the world’s wealthiest human being.“The process leading to the approval of Musk’s compensation plan was deeply flawed,” Chancellor Kathaleen St. J. McCormick of the Delaware Court of Chancery said in the decision. She ordered that the contract that provided his record pay be voided.A group of Tesla shareholders had challenged a stock options package that ended up giving Mr. Musk the right to acquire Tesla shares that were worth over $70 billion when the stock price was higher. To receive the award, which was one of the largest of its kind and widely imitated by other corporations, Tesla had to meet c...
Ring to Stop Allowing Police to Request Videos From Security Cameras
Technology

Ring to Stop Allowing Police to Request Videos From Security Cameras

Ring, a home security camera company owned by Amazon, said that it would stop letting police departments request users’ footage in its app amid longstanding concerns from privacy advocates about the company’s relationship with law enforcement.Eric Kuhn, the general manager of subscriptions and software for the Ring app Neighbors, announced on Wednesday that the company was shutting down a feature that allowed the police to request and receive videos from users of the app, a social platform similar to Nextdoor and Citizen where people can share alerts about crime near their home.Mr. Kuhn did not say why Ring was eliminating the app feature, which allowed the police to ask the public for help with active investigations under a special category of posts called “Request for Assistance.”People ...
23andMe Breach Targeted Jewish and Chinese Customers, Lawsuit Says
Technology

23andMe Breach Targeted Jewish and Chinese Customers, Lawsuit Says

The genetic testing company 23andMe is being accused in a class-action lawsuit of failing to protect the privacy of customers whose personal information was exposed last year in a data breach that affected nearly seven million profiles.The lawsuit, which was filed on Friday in federal court in San Francisco, also accused the company of failing to notify customers with Chinese and Ashkenazi Jewish heritage that they appeared to have been specifically targeted, or that their personal genetic information had been compiled into “specially curated lists” that were shared and sold on the dark web.The suit was filed after 23andMe submitted a notification to the California Attorney General’s Office that showed the company was hacked over the course of five months, from late April 2023 through Sept...
Cruise Says Hostility Toward Regulators Led to Grounding of Its Autonomous Cars
Technology

Cruise Says Hostility Toward Regulators Led to Grounding of Its Autonomous Cars

Cruise, the driverless car subsidiary of General Motors, said in a report on Thursday that an adversarial approach taken by its top executives toward regulators had led to a cascade of events that ended with a nationwide suspension of Cruise’s fleet.The roughly 100-page report was compiled by a law firm that Cruise hired to investigate whether its executives had misled California regulators about an October crash in San Francisco in which a Cruise vehicle dragged a woman 20 feet. The investigation found that while the executives had not intentionally misled state officials, they had failed to explain key details about the incident.In meetings with regulators, the executives let a video of the crash “speak for itself” rather than fully explain how one of its vehicles severely injured the pe...
New Hampshire Officials to Investigate A.I. Robocalls Mimicking Biden
Technology

New Hampshire Officials to Investigate A.I. Robocalls Mimicking Biden

Voters in New Hampshire received robocall messages over the weekend in a voice that was most likely artificially generated to impersonate President Biden’s, urging them not to vote in Tuesday’s primary election, according to the state attorney general’s office.The fake recordings, which told listeners that “your vote makes a difference in November, not this Tuesday,” were manipulated to seem as if they had been sent by an officer of a Democratic committee, the office said.The attorney general’s office stressed that voting in the primary would not rule out voters from also casting ballots in the general election in November.“These messages appear to be an unlawful attempt to disrupt the New Hampshire presidential primary election and to suppress New Hampshire voters,” the office said in a s...