Science & Technology

US in 'good shape' in 5G race, on the cusp of 'significant' tech breakthroughs: FCC commissioner

February 25, 2019

“There are other technologies on the horizon as well. There’s a new generation of low-Earth orbit satellites that are coming online. The wired broadband networks are being upgraded as well,” he said. “We are focused on getting the regulatory playing field right and then letting the private sector deploy whatever new broadband technologies that they can.”

Trump: Additional US Tariffs on Chinese Goods Delayed

February 25, 2019

Trump said on Sunday that he’d delay additional tariffs on Chinese goods originally scheduled to begin on Mar 1. He cited “substantial progress” in trade talks between the US and China in several of his Twitter posts in a series of posts on Twitter.

China rushes to seal trade deal ahead of Trump's deadline

February 25, 2019

Saturday marked the fifth straight day of the negotiations between the world’s two biggest economies. Talks were extended through the weekend after both sides reported progress in narrowing their differences. The Chinese delegation is scheduled to leave for Beijing on Monday, according to a person familiar with their itinerary. This is the fourth round of negotiations since Washington and Beijing agreed to a ceasefire in their trade war.

Trade War: Will the US and China Enter a Long-Term Technological Arms Race?

February 24, 2019

Will the US and China enter a long-term technological arms race? The Economist Intelligence Unit (The EIU) said it’s highly likely. “The likelihood that the US and China will make some progress in the ongoing trade talks has increased as a result of mounting domestic pressure in both economies,” said Cailin Birch, Global Economist at The EIU. “Nonetheless, we do not expect a meaningful agreement, as the US and China enter into a strategic competition for economic--and particularly technological--dominance."

23andMe Cuts Off the DNA App Ecosystem It Created

February 24, 2019

23andMe hasn’t said if the move is designed to retain control over its data or in response to concerns about user privacy. The company had plans several years ago to launch an app store, according to two people familiar with the matter, but opted not to move forward with the project because of challenges with vetting third-party developers. At-home DNA testing companies have been at the center of a privacy firestorm in recent months.

US tech company says it will no longer sell equipment to China to expand Uighur DNA tracking capability

February 24, 2019

A U.S. biotech company will no longer allow China to purchase equipment believed to have been used to help the ruling Communist Party create a DNA database of the country’s Uighur minority. China in recent years has been able to ramp up its controversial monitoring and detaining of the ethnic group mostly situation in the Xinjiang province with the "help of Americans", according to a New York Times report.

U.S. science adviser sees smaller federal role

February 22, 2019

Droegemeier's message was aspirational, pledging to combat sexual harassment in science without giving any details and to ease federal regulations on research. He made passing mention of climate change, which many researchers see as the most pressing science-based issue of our time. And he said the key to future scientific preeminence isn't increased federal funding, but stronger collaborations among government, industry, academia, and private foundations.

What an American artificial intelligence initiative really needs

February 21, 2019

We know that China, France and the U.K. have invested and committed billions already to their own AI initiatives. The American AI Initiative as it stands does little to blunt the fears that America will fall behind in its technological edge. In fact, its lack of particulars sends exactly the opposite message. If the government wants to demonstrate its support for AI, it needs to commit significant funding and investment in education to retain, attract and grow the talent necessary to support such a critical industry...

AAAS: Machine learning 'causing science crisis'

February 21, 2019

Machine-learning techniques used by thousands of scientists to analyse data are producing results that are misleading and often completely wrong. Dr Genevera Allen from Rice University in Houston said that the increased use of such systems was contributing to a “crisis in science”. She warned scientists that if they didn’t improve their techniques they would be wasting both time and money. Her research was presented at the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington.

Google says Nest's secret microphone was 'never intended to be a secret'

February 21, 2019

Google said there’s absolutely, positively nothing to worry about the secret microphone in your Nest Secure smart home hub that it didn’t tell you about. Nope, not at all. Just an oversight, said Google. No need to be alarmed. Everything is just fine.

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