Interesting Tech

collection of interesting topics on tech

State of the Art: Uber, a Rising Business Model

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

New technologies have the potential to divide a variety of traditional jobs into tasks that can be assigned to people just when they’re needed.

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Stocks rise at midday after strong Apple, Boeing results

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

NEW YORK (AP) " The U.S. stock market is rising slightly at midday as investors wait for the Federal Reserve’s latest policy statement.The Dow Jones industrial average rose 55 points, or 0.3 percent, to 17,442 as of 12:02 p.m. Eastern…

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‘Sanction tech firms’, says Hollande

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

France’s President calls for an international legal framework to force tech companies to ‘face up to their responsibilities’.

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Solo supernovae challenge cosmic distance standards

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Supernovae were thought to need help from a nearby star – if they don’t, we may have to rethink how we measure cosmic distances as well as dark energy

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Bits Blog: Regulators Crack Down on Marketers of ‘Unlimited’ Data Plans

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

TracFone Wireless, the largest provider of prepaid mobile service in the United States, agreed to pay $40 million to settle charges that it had deceived customers in its marketing of “unlimited” data plans.

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Farmers fear rough ride coming up, with low dairy payout and prospect of drought

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Farmers are "battening down the hatches" as they prepare for a low dairy payout this year and as a full-scale drought approaches South Canterbury and North Otago, says Federated Farmers president William Rolleston.He said as the…

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Teachers struggle to find voice, survey finds

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Being a teacher doesn’t just mean losing your patience with unruly pupils – it can also mean losing your voice.The first study of its kind in New Zealand has found more than half of teachers surveyed have suffered from voice problems,…

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Scottish fracking block announced

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

The Scottish government announces a block on planned fracking operations, pending the outcome of further inquiries.

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Bits Blog: What Happens if Apple Drops Google From Its Browser?

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Yahoo’s chief executive wants to get the company’s search bar into Apple’s Safari browser, as it did with the Firefox browser. What that would mean to Google, Safari’s current search bar, isn’t so clear.

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Electrolux swings to profit despite sagging income in US

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

STOCKHOLM (AP) " Home appliance maker Electrolux swung to a profit in the fourth quarter, citing cost cuts and rising sales.The Swedish company on Wednesday posted a net profit of 969 million kronor ($117 million), compared with…

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Bits Blog: What Happens if Apple Drops Google From Its Browser?

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Yahoo’s chief executive wants to get the company’s search bar into Apple’s Safari browser, as it did with the Firefox browser. What that would mean to Google, Safari’s current search bar, isn’t so clear.

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AI will not kill us, says Microsoft

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

The chief of Microsoft’s research division says he does not believe artificial intelligence systems are going to wipe out humankind.

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AI will not kill us, says Microsoft

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

The chief of Microsoft’s research division says he does not believe artificial intelligence systems are going to wipe out humankind.

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Ford recalls cars, vans for door latch and seat belt trouble

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) " Ford is recalling more than 221,000 cars and vans to fix problems with door latches and seat belts.The biggest recall covers nearly 205,000 Ford Taurus, Lincoln MKS and Police Interceptor models in North America…

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Sinosphere Blog: Dystopian Reality of China’s Smog Captured in ‘Airpocalypse’ App

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Airpocalypse, a sleek, color-coded app, provides weather conditions in Chinese cities, shows air quality measurements and, perhaps most important, “shares your excitement” on clear days and “feels your pain” on smoggy ones.

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‘Mystery’ beavers permitted to stay

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

A family of beavers mysteriously reintroduced to the River Otter in Devon will be allowed to remain living in the wild, Natural England decides.

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Fractals seen in throbs of pulsating golden stars

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Zoom in on a star’s vibrations and, if they’re related by the golden ratio, you might see fractals, like a coastline. This could tell us about what’s going on inside

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Moon milestone prizes awarded to XPrize competitors

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

The Google-sponsored competition to land a spacecraft on the moon has awarded "milestone prizes" to five competing teams

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‘World can cut carbon emissions and live well’

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Cutting carbon emissions can be achieved while improving living standards – but big trade-offs in land use and energy are needed, say ministers.

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China tech giant in spat with state

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

China’s biggest internet retailer, Alibaba, is involved in a harshly worded spat with one of the country’s regulators in a highly unusual public clash.

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Anthem raises dividend almost 43 pct, tops 4Q forecasts

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) " Anthem is hiking the quarterly dividend it pays shareholders nearly 43 percent after reporting fourth-quarter results that topped Wall Street expectations.The nation’s second-largest health insurer says it will…

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CommScope buying some of TE Connectivity ops for about $3B

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

HICKORY, N.C. (AP) " CommScope is buying TE Connectivity Ltd.’s telecom, enterprise and wireless businesses for about $3 billion, which will help diversify its operations and broaden its geographic reach.The businesses, made up…

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VIDEO: Should Britain reintroduce beavers?

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Claire Marshall looks at the impact beavers have on the environment, ahead of a decision on whether a family of beavers should be removed from a river in Devon.

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Apple profit ‘biggest in history’

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Record sales of iPhones help Apple to report a first quarter profit of $18bn, the biggest ever quarterly profit for a public company.

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First step towards saving rhino

Written By: admin - Jan• 29•15

Experts are pinning their hopes on in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) to save the northern white rhino from extinction.

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Stocks drift as weak US earnings add to growth concerns

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

BEIJING (AP) " Global stocks drifted Wednesday after weak earnings from several U.S. companies added to global growth concerns as investors waited for the U.S. Federal Reserve’s latest statement on monetary policy.KEEPING SCORE:…

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Apple profit ‘biggest in history’

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Record sales of iPhones help Apple to report a first quarter profit of $18bn, the biggest ever quarterly profit for a public company.

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German consumer confidence at 13-year high

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

BERLIN (AP) " German consumer confidence is at a 13-year high, buoyed by a rise in disposable income due to collapsing fuel and heating oil costs.The GfK research group said Wednesday its forward-looking consumer climate index rose…

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Apple profit ‘biggest in history’

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Record sales of iPhones help Apple to report a first quarter profit of $18bn, the biggest ever quarterly profit for a public company.

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Apple profit ‘biggest in history’

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Record sales of iPhones help Apple to report a first quarter profit of $18bn, the biggest ever quarterly profit for a public company.

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China criticizes Alibaba in report withheld until after IPO

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

BEIJING (AP) " Chinese regulators have accused e-commerce giant Alibaba of allowing sales of fake and shoddy goods and other mismanagement in a report that was withheld until now to avoid disrupting its U.S. stock market debut.The…

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Alibaba spinoff likely to increase scrutiny on Yahoo CEO

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) " Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is losing a precious security blanket now that she is spinning off the Internet company’s prized stake in China’s Alibaba Group.The breakup announced Tuesday will transfer ownership of…

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Kiwi drops against Aussie dollar

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

The New Zealand dollar dropped against the Australian dollar after unexpectedly strong inflation data across the Tasman prompted traders to wind back bets that nation’s central bank could cut interest rates.The kiwi traded at 93.23…

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Kepler find reveals ‘dawn of galaxy’

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

An ancient solar system similar to our own is discovered by scientists at the University of Birmingham studying data from the Kepler telescope.

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China’s yuan joins top 5 most-used global currencies

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

BEIJING (AP) " An international financial transactions agency says China’s currency, the yuan, has become the fifth-most-widely used currency in global payments.The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication said…

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Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche issue recalls for fuel leaks

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

DETROIT (AP) " Audi, Volkswagen and Porsche are recalling more than 93,500 cars and SUVs worldwide to fix fuel leak problems.The recalls cover the Audi A6 and Volkswagen Touareg hybrid from the 2012 model year, the Audi A7 from…

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Electronic Arts shares up on results

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Shares in Electronic Arts jump almost 5% after the video games publisher reports stronger than expected results.

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Bits Blog: Twitter Adds Group Messaging and Video Recording

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

In an effort to catch up to rival services like Facebook, Twitter will now allow people to shoot, edit and post video directly from its mobile apps. Also, private messages on the service can now be sent to as many as 20 people.

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Apple profit ‘biggest in history’

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Apple’s first quarter profit of $18bn is the biggest ever quarterly profit for a public company, according to Standard and Poor’s.

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Overseas giant cleared to buy waterfront property

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Listed property business Goodman Property Trust has just announced it has Overseas Investment Office clearance to sell a 49 per cent share in some of Auckland’s most valuable commercial properties to Asian interests.The deal involves…

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No US-India deal on climate change

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Why the US and India walk different paths on climate

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Yahoo to Spin Off Its Stake in Alibaba

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Shedding its 15 percent stake in the Chinese e-commerce site turns the spotlight to Yahoo’s plans to revamp its core Internet advertising business.

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Apple earnings beat expectations

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Apple reports first quarter earnings of $18bn and record iPhone sales of 74.5 million, beating investor expectations.

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Auckland waterfront property sale cleared

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Listed property business Goodman Property Trust has just announced it has Overseas Investment Office clearance to sell a 49 per cent share in some of Auckland’s most valuable commercial properties to Asian interests.The deal involves…

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Apple earnings beat expectations

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Apple reports first quarter earnings of $18bn and record iPhone sales of 74.5 million, beating investor expectations.

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Yahoo to spin off Alibaba stake into separate company

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) " Yahoo CEO Marissa Meyer is spinning off the company’s prized stake in China’s Alibaba Group Holding in a move that will avoid paying billions in future taxes.A newly formed entity called SpinCo will inherit…

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Why mosquitoes seem to bite some people more

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

There’s always one in a crowd, a sort of harbinger of the oncoming mosquito onslaught: a person mosquitoes seem to target more than others. What is it about these unlucky chosen few that makes them mosquito magnets? There are hundreds…

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Apple earnings beat expectations

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Apple reports first-quarter earnings of $18bn and record iPhone sales of 74.5 million, beating investor expectations.

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Apple’s Profit and Revenue Surge, Propelled by Strong iPhone Sales in China

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

The success in China helped push Apple to a blockbuster quarter, increasing overall profit to $18 billion, and revenue to $74.6 billion in the latest quarter.

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Heartland raises its profit forecast

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Heartland New Zealand, the bank formed from the merger of Marac Finance with Southern Cross and Canterbury building societies, raised its 2015 profit forecast on better-than-expected asset growth.The Christchurch-based lender expects…

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Discovery of five new Earth-sized planets raises hopes of finding water-based life

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

The possibility of finding a rocky planet where water-based life may exist took a giant leap forward after five Earth-sized planets were identified around a distant star in the Milky Way galaxy.Though all five planets are too close…

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Spotify’s Top 10 most viral tracks

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

The following list represents the most viral tracks on Spotify, based on the number of people who shared it divided by the number who listened to it, from Monday, Jan. 19, to Sunday, Jan. 25, via Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter and Spotify.UNITED…

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Bits Blog: Twitter Adds Group Messaging and Video Recording

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

In an effort to catch up to rival services like Facebook, Twitter will now allow people to shoot, edit and post video directly from its mobile apps. Also, private messages on the service can now be sent to as many as 20 people.

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American Airlines interested in offering flights to Cuba

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Add American Airlines to the list of carriers that want to take you to Cuba.An airline executive said Tuesday that American already operates about 20 charter flights a week to Cuba and would like to add regular flights from Miami."We…

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Revived snoopers’ charter shelved

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

An attempt to bring back the controversial measures is dropped, but peers demand to see the government’s private draft of new legislation instead.

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Bits Blog: A Data-Science Lender Takes on Student Debt

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Earnest, a start-up lender, is moving into the student debt market. Using data-science tools, Earnest says it can offer lower, tailored rates and flexible repayment schedules.

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Obama floats offering first-ever drilling lease in Atlantic

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

WASHINGTON (AP) " The Obama administration is proposing to open up drilling off a broad swath of the Atlantic Oceasn for the first time, even as it restricts drilling off Alaska.The plan, unveiled Tuesday, envisions auctioning areas…

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Twitter adds group messages and video

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

The social network activates promised new features in an attempt to boost engagement on Twitter.

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Bits Blog: A Data-Science Lender Takes on Student Debt

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Earnest, a start-up lender, is moving into the student debt market. Using data-science tools, Earnest says it can offer lower, tailored rates and flexible repayment schedules.

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BP executive takes stand in US Gulf oil spill penalty trial

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

NEW ORLEANS (AP) " A BP executive has taken the stand as lawyers for the oil giant make their case for a U.S. Clean Water Act penalty well under the $13.7 billion maximum for the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.Richard Morrison,…

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Wired dazed after offer goes viral

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Wired magazine apologises to subscribers after becoming "overwhelmed" by demand for a fitness tracker gift offer that went viral on the internet.

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Best ever view of asteroid Ceres

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

The best image ever acquired of Ceres, the largest asteroid in the Solar System, is now in the hands of science.

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Bits Blog: Lyft, Now in Talks for More Funding, Pushes Growth Strategy

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Lyft must persuade its backers that the company has a fighting chance against Uber, which operates in hundreds of cities globally and has raised many times more money.

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US home price gains slow in November on weaker sales

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

WASHINGTON (AP) " U.S. home prices rose at a modest pace in November, held back by weaker sales and a limited number of houses for sale.The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index, released Tuesday, increased 4.3…

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Thailand draws up tough drone laws

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

The Transport Ministry in Thailand is seeking to ban all unlicensed drone flights, local media reports.

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England’s environment ‘in decline’

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

England’s natural environment is in decline and its deterioration is harming the economy, an independent advisory group warns.

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Bits Blog: Lyft, Now in Talks for More Funding, Pushes Growth Strategy

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Lyft must persuade its backers that the company has a fighting chance against Uber, which operates in hundreds of cities globally and has raised many times more money.

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3M tops 4Q profit forecasts

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) " 3M Co. (MMM) on Tuesday reported fourth-quarter profit of $1.18 billion.The St. Paul, Minnesota-based company said it had profit of $1.81 per share.The results beat Wall Street expectations. The average…

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Planet hosts giant ring system

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Astronomers say they have discovered a gigantic ring system around a distant planet – the first such structure discovered outside our Solar System.

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Web attacks ‘growing’ in volume

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Hacktivists and angry gamers are becoming the main users of net attacks that knock sites offline by bombarding them with data, suggests a report

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Bits Blog: Twitter Adds Group Messaging and Video Recording

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

In an effort to catch up to rival services like Facebook, Twitter will now allow people to shoot, edit and post video directly from its mobile apps. Also, private messages on the service can now be sent to as many as 20 people.

Read more here

India nuke deals still thorny for US despite ‘breakthrough’

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

NEW DELHI (AP) " India and America’s declaration of a breakthrough in contentious nuclear energy cooperation has been met with a lukewarm response from industry and analysts. Few expect the potentially lucrative Indian market to suddenly…

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Near asteroid 2004 BL86 has a moon

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Scientists who tracked the large asteroid 2004 BL86 as it passed by Earth say it has a small satellite.

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Britain’s economy loses steam in fourth quarter

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

LONDON (AP) " Official figures show Britain’s economy slowed in the fourth quarter of 2014 but remained one of the better-performing economies in the developed world.The economy grew 0.5 percent from the previous three-month period….

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Police raid Amazon’s Tokyo offices

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

Japanese police have raided Amazon’s Tokyo offices as part of an investigation into alleged sales of images of child sexual abuse.

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Laser flight path caught on camera for the first time

Written By: admin - Jan• 28•15

It’s usually only possible to see the spot where a laser lands rather than its path, but now an ultrafast camera has caught those photons mid-flight

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Swiss drug maker Novartis posts Q4 profit drop

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

BERLIN (AP) " Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis AG says fourth quarter net income dropped 26 percent but the company still posted a healthy 2014 annual profit.The Basel, Switzerland-based company said Tuesday that fourth quarter…

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VIDEO: 3D printed heart saves girl’s life

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

A two-year-old girl who was born with a serious heart defect has had a life-saving operation thanks to a 3D printer.

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Facebook suffers widespread fault

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Facebook and other internet services became inaccessible for about 40 minutes before coming back online.

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Siemens quarterly profit slips 25 pct on slow power business

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) " Industrial machinery maker Siemens AG says net profit fell 25 percent in its most recent quarter as revalued financial derivatives and lower earnings at its key power and gas business weighed on the bottom…

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Aer Lingus backs takeover, needs Irish government support

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

DUBLIN (AP) " Aer Lingus says it supports a takeover bid by British Airways parent IAG, putting the Irish airline on course for foreign acquisition nine years after the government privatized the national flag carrier.Tuesday’s statement…

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Facebook suffers widespread outage

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Social networking site Facebook suffered from a widespread outage on Tuesday, before coming back online.

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‘Time to link nature and wellbeing’

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Scientists need to work together to capitalise on a growing body of evidence showing a link between biodiversity and human wellbeing, a US review suggests.

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Small businesses hunker down, cope during big winter storm

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

NEW YORK (AP) " The huge snowstorm that hit the Northeast Monday had some small companies hunkering down and others coping with a spike in business.Limousine company owner Bob Bellagamba expected to lose as much as 90 percent of…

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England’s environment ‘in decline’

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

England’s natural environment is in decline and its deterioration is harming the economy, an independent advisory group warns.

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Bits Blog: Tech Giants Invest in New Dreams of Grandeur

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

A series of investments by some of the tech industry’s biggest companies may sound odd, but they point to larger ambitions in moving giant amounts of data.

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Standard & Poor’s downgrades Russia’s credit rating to junk

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Russia’s foreign-currency credit rating was cut to junk by Standard & Poor’s, putting it below investment grade for the first time in a decade, as policy makers struggle to boost growth amid international sanctions and a drop in oil…

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Wool price hits 3-year high

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

New Zealand lamb wool prices rose to a three-year high last week on increased demand for the fibre from clothing manufacturers in China.The price for lamb wool jumped 10 cents to $6.10 per kilogram at last week’s North Island auction,…

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Bits Blog: At Universities, a Push for Data-Driven Career Services

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

LinkedIn data on college graduates is a goldmine for schools seeking to identify alumni willing to mentor students or recruit them for jobs.

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Ancient planets are almost as old as the universe

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

The oldest rocky planets yet are 11.2 billion years old, just a little younger than the universe – meaning the galaxy made an early start on planet building

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Microsoft earnings report doesn’t excite market

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) " Big jumps in sales of its Surface tablets, cloud computing software and Lumia smartphones drove Microsoft’s quarterly revenue above expectations, as CEO Satya Nadella continues to steer toward the mobile gadget…

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Price Cuts for Crucial Microsoft Products Eroded Holiday-Season Profit

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

The company said the weak personal computer market hurt its Windows business, as second-quarter net income dropped to $5.86 billion from $6.56 billion a year ago.

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Africa’s new breed of ‘solar-preneurs’

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Africa’s "solar-preneurs" bring light to the unconnected

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Sky TV shares downgraded

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Morningstar financial analysts have downgraded Sky TV shares from accumulate to hold as competition heats up for internet TV.Sky has indicated it will launch its subscription-video-on-demand service Neon this week offering several…

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Microsoft quarterly profits fall

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Microsoft reports falling profits but sales were helped by strong Xbox sales over the holiday season.

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Microsoft Profit Dropped in 2nd Quarter

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

The company said the weak personal computer market hurt its Windows business.

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As storm rushes in, airlines cancel while salt sellers gain

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Businesses large and small are feeling the effects of a huge snowstorm sweeping into the Northeast Monday. For some, wintry weather is derailing activity: Airlines canceled thousands of flights. Car dealers expect to lose a couple…

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Bits Blog: Pluralsight, a Training Service for Tech Professionals, Buys Code School

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

Pluralsight, an online training platform for technology professionals, acquires Code School, a skills site for beginning coders.

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China moves to accept imports of all US apple varieties

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

SPOKANE, Washington (AP) " For the first time in several years, all varieties of apples from the United States will go on sale in China.A deal was reached last week between officials for the United States and Chinese governments…

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Fracking moratorium rejected by MPs

Written By: admin - Jan• 27•15

MPs overwhelmingly reject a bid to suspend fracking for shale gas – but agree to Labour proposals to impose new conditions.

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