<![CDATA[NBC Southern California - Tech News]]> Copyright 2016 http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/tech http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC4_40x125.png NBC Southern California http://www.nbclosangeles.com en-us Thu, 11 Feb 2016 07:11:34 -0800 Thu, 11 Feb 2016 07:11:34 -0800 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Tim Cook's Blurry iPhone Photo Sets Off Twitter Memes]]> Tue, 09 Feb 2016 17:11:29 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/AP743169138684.jpg

The internet never forgives — or forgets.

Like most of the 70,000 other people watching the Super Bowl at Levi’s Stadium Sunday, Apple CEO Tim Cook also tweeted out a photo of the moment the Broncos beat the Panthers — golden confetti raining down and all.

That (very blurry) photo set off a thousand memes.

One of the first tweets came from the Twitter account Soju Boy Tell ‘Em, which appears to belong to Andy Koh, a photographer and filmmaker based out of New York.

“New iPhone campaign starring @tim_cook,” Koh tweeted, along with a picture of Cook’s blurry photo photoshopped on a “Shot on iPhone 6” billboard campaign, which claims that the camera on the iPhone 6s/6s Plus is just as good as a DSLR.

“Someone should upgrade him to the 7+ so he has some image stabilization,” tweeted @Dan_H.

One Twitter user tweeted out a blurry of Tim Cook, asking: “Hi Tim, can you replace your profile picture for this one? Thanks.”

“You take this with an iPad?” asked @dco.

“Someone get him a Samsung S6 edge plus or LG G4 #iPhoneFail,” tweeted @MenaceSlinger.

“Was this pic taken with a toaster?” Tweeted @@KKaplanis

Cook tweeted out another picture of the celebrations later.

This one, the Twittersphere agreed, was much better that the previous.

One Twiiter user joked: "Ironically, the better photo was posted via Twitter for iPad…"

Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[Top Super Bowl 50 Social Media Moments]]> Mon, 08 Feb 2016 18:09:16 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-508984228.jpg

The Denver Broncos beat the Carolina Panthers 24-10 to win Super Bowl 50 at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara, California, delivering star quarterback Peyton Manning his second championship ring. From Beyoncé's performance of her new song "Formation" at halftime to Betty White's dab before the game, here are the top social media moments on and off the field.

12. Eli Manning's not-so-pleased expression when his brother's team scored a critical touchdown in the fourth quarter lit up social media with hilarious memes.

Peyton Manning tied his younger brother for two Super Bowl rings apiece, leading many to wonder whether sibling rivalry had anything to do with Eli's emotionless face.

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11. A disappointed Cam Newton abruptly walked out of the post-Super Bowl press conference after the Panthers quarterback gave reporters short answers about his team's loss.

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Former NFL linebacker Bill Romanowski took to Twitter, scolding Newton for his behavior, but he quickly had to clarify his remarks. 

"You will never last in the NFL with that attitude,” Romanowski wrote. "The world doesn’t revolve around you, boy! #CamNewton

Romanowski deleted that tweet. Later, he tried to clarify his remarks tweeting, "Calm down everyone! I meant he needs to grow up!”

He eventually tweeted an apology: "I apologize for that remark 'boy.' It was not intentional or even trying to disrespect others. Peace everyone!"

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Meanwhile, some critics also slammed Newton for having failed to dive for the ball during a fumble, and called it a "business decision." 

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10. NBA superstar Kevin Durant shot photos from the sidelines.

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9. A stampede of adorable dachshunds dressed in hot dog buns ran toward ketchup and mustard bottles in a Heinz commercial, one of the many memorable Super Bowl ads. 

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8. FLOTUS and POTUS prepped for the Super Bowl with their dogs Sunny and Bo. 

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7. Gwyneth Paltrow's daughter Apple Martin and Beyonce's daughter Blue Ivy were seen holding hands in Paltrow's Instagram post before the Super Bowl. Apple's father Chris Martin and Beyonce performed together during the halftime show.

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6. Jonathan Stewart leapt into the end zone for the Panthers only touchdown.

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5. Astronaut Scott Kelly tweeted an aerial view of the Super Bowl from space. Kelly is spending a year in space. 

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4. Beyonce slayed in her halftime performance of her new song "Formation." She announced she's embarking on a Formation World Tour during the game. The halftime festivities also boasted performances by Bruno Mars and Coldplay.

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3. Betty White dabbed, sending Newton a message prior to the start of the game.

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2. Denver Broncos starting quarterback Peyton Manning won his second Super Bowl. 

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1. Lady Gaga sported red eyeshadow and delivered a memorable rendition of the national anthem to kick off Super Bowl 50.

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Photo Credit: Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Twitter Locks Down 125,000 Accounts]]> Fri, 05 Feb 2016 15:04:37 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/twitterGettyImages-494325030.jpg

Twitter announced Friday it will shut down more than 125,000 accounts as part of an effort to crack down on extremist content.

In a news release, the company said it was committed to weeding out content that advocates for terrorism and violence. It said there is no "magic algorithm" for targeting such content, but it will continue to "engage with authorities and other relevant organizations to find solutions to this critical issue."

Since late last year, Twitter has been using "proprietary spam fighting tools" in order to identify accounts that violate their terms of service policy. It also has assigned a dedicated team to examine the accounts. 

The moves come as the White House has been putting more pressure on social media companies to proactively identify potentially dangerous accounts and content.

The Obama administration has sent high-level personnel including F.B.I Director James Comey to California to discuss how the tech giants and government can work together more effectively. 

Twitter said the nature of its product, which it called "an open forum for expression," makes it vulnerable to becoming a communications tool for social media savvy terrorist organizations like ISIS, as NBC News reported. 

Last month, a woman whose husband was killed in Jordan in a terrorist attack sued Twitter in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The suit claimed Twitter was partially responsible because the ISIS attack was coordinated via the social media platform.

The suit is not expected to get far, as Twitter is protected by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, but it does raise questions about the level of responsibility that social media companies should have regarding the content on their platforms.

Photo Credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Drone Hits Empire State Building]]> Fri, 05 Feb 2016 04:41:59 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/drone+suspect+empire+state+building.jpg

A small drone crashed into the 40th floor of the Empire State Building Thursday night and then fell to a 35th floor landing, authorities said. 

Police said a New Jersey man was flying the drone in an attempt to take pictures and apparently lost control of the aircraft.

Investigators said Sean Nivin Riddle was arrested at the scene and is expected to face criminal charges. He was being questioned by officers at the Midtown South police precinct.

Right after the crash, Riddle apparently wrote on his own Twitter feed: “filming w/ drone, now its stuck on the empire state building....w/security.”

The crash brought a significant police and FBI response to the landmark at Fifth Avenue and 34th Street as a precaution. Investigators said that they do not believe the crash was intentional.

No one was hurt.

Riddle did not immediately respond to requests from NBC 4 New York seeking comment. 

Photo Credit: File.
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<![CDATA[Happy 'Friends Day': Facebook Turns 12 ]]> Thu, 04 Feb 2016 11:42:33 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/friends-day-facebook-video.jpg

It's been 12 years since Facebook launched its social media website and to celebrate the milestone the technology company has dubbed their anniversary "Friends Day."

The company wrote in a blog post that its research showed that every person on the site is connected to every other person by an average of three and a half other people.

Facebook's "degrees of separation" have shrunk as more people have signed on over the years.

To celebrate its anniversary, Facebook has created a Friends Day Video feature which gives the millions of Facebook users a personalized film at the top of their newsfeed. The video depicts a slideshow of Facebook photos unique to each user's account that shows him or her with friends and loved ones, all while set to a playful tune. 

While the company is encouraging Facebook users to share their Friends Day video with the hashtag #friendsday, another hashtag has gained popularity: #beforefacebooki.

Facebook users, as well as those on Twitter and Instagram, have taken to the web to reflect on what their life was like before Facebook existed, giving insight into the way the tech company has changed what it means to be connected. 

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<![CDATA[Zuckerberg Deposes Bezos of Fifth Richest Title]]> Wed, 03 Feb 2016 13:24:14 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-464961022.jpg

On Tuesday, Mark Zuckerberg passed Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to become the fifth richest person in the world, less than a week after he claimed the position of sixth wealthiest from Oracle Chairman Larry Ellison, NBC News reported.

Zuckerberg is worth $50 billion, Forbes estimates, as of Tuesday's close. According to the same estimates, Bezos is worth approximately $48.9 billion.

This puts the 31-year-old CEO in close proximity to Carlos Slim, the Mexican business magnate who was the richest person in the world from 2010 to 2013.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[GE to Stop Making Fluorescent Light Bulbs]]> Tue, 02 Feb 2016 07:51:30 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/190*120/AP_090610036569.jpg

GE announced Monday that it will stop making its coiled compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) for the U.S. market and switch to LED lamps by the end of 2016.

LED light bulbs are brighter, use less energy and last longer. They do not use dangerous chemicals such as mercury to generate power like CFLs do. However, LEDs are the most expensive type of bulb.

“These LED lightbulbs are starting to replicate what the electrical filament has done for over 100 years — providing that look and warm ambience that people are used to,” GE Lighting chief operating officer John Strainic said in the announcement. “The time for LED is now.”

Compact fluorescents were the first big energy-saving option but they no longer meet government standards for energy efficiency. 

<![CDATA[Apple Recalls AC Adapters Over Potential Shock Hazard]]> Fri, 29 Jan 2016 12:55:09 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/257*120/Screen-Shot-2016-01-29-at-2.58.02-PM.jpg

Apple issued a voluntary recall this week of certain AC wall plug adapters because they may break and cause electrical shock when touched.

In a statement posted on their site, Apple said it's recalling AC wall plug adapters designed for users in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Continental Europe, New Zealand and South Korea. The recall also affects adapters sold in the United States as part of The Apple World Travel Adapter Kit sold for $29. 

According to Apple, there were 12 incidents globally of defective adapters causing an electrical shock. 

Apple stressed the recall "does not affect any other Apple AC wall plug adapters designed for Canada, China, Hong Kong, Japan, United Kingdom, United States or any Apple USB power adapters."

The two-prong adapters affected by the recall have either four, five, or no characters on an inside slot that connects to the primary power adapter. They shipped with certain Mac and iOS devices between 2003 and 2015. A redesigned and unaffected adapter has a three-letter regional code, like EUR, KOR, AUS, ARG or BRA, instead.

Consumers who purchased the travel kit are urged to visit Apple's website to get it exchanged for a redesigned model. They can also exchange the adapter at a local Apple Store or an authorized Apple service provider.

Although not common for the Cupertino giant, recalls have occurred before. In 2008, Apple launched the Power Adapter Exchange Program for the iPhone 3G power adapter, which also could break and create potential for electrical shock to users.

Photo Credit: Apple
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<![CDATA[Zuckerberg Surpasses Kochs on Bloomberg Billionaire List]]> Thu, 28 Jan 2016 15:18:18 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/tlmd_markzuckerbergok1.png

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has passed billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch to become the sixth richest person on the planet, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

No, the social media mogul didn't win the Powerball. The boost comes from Facebook reporting record revenue on Wednesday, pegged largely to growth in mobile phone use, according to NBC News.

That beefed up Zuckerberg's net worth by $5.5 billion, leaving him with a grand total of $47 billion — placing him ahead of the Koch brothers, who are currently worth $45.3 billion, according to Bloomberg.

But Zuckerberg still has some ground to make up to break into the five, where Bill Gates and Warren Buffett reside.

Photo Credit: File -- Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Parents Warned to Secure Baby Video Monitors: Officials]]> Wed, 27 Jan 2016 13:34:51 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/BabyMonitor-GettyImages-136714563.jpg

New York City’s Department of Consumer Affairs is warning parents to secure Internet-connected video baby monitors, NBC News reported.

Officials say there have been many reports of devices being infiltrated and, in some cases, strangers talking to babies in the middle of the night through hacked monitors.

The department is urging parents to buy secure devices, use strong passwords, register their products and turn the devices off when not in use.

Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[FCC Proposes New Competition to Set-Top TV Box Market]]> Wed, 27 Jan 2016 11:50:29 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/CableBox-AP_070531053315.jpg

The Federal Communications Commission may open up competition for cable and satellite TV companies, NBC News reported.

The FCC proposed regulation Wednesday to allow consumers to get services through devices like tablets instead of pay-TV boxes.

Americans spent almost $20 billion — an average of $231 a year — a year to lease pay-TV boxes, according to the FCC. Rental fees have jumped 185 percent since 1994, while the price of TVs, computers and cellphones has gone down by 90 percent.

The FCC said a competitive marketplace is required by a 1996 law. The regulation will be voted on Feb. 18. 

<![CDATA[Clickers Beware: 'CrashSafari' Links Will Kill Your iPhone]]> Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:14:52 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Apple-Iphone-AP_130974735694.jpg

Pranksters on the social web are sending people to a website that causes smartphones to crash — so you might want to hold off on clicking or tapping random links today, NBC News reported.

Don't worry, it isn't some critical bug that Apple or Google needs to patch — it's just ordinary webpage components used maliciously to overload just about any browser.

The website, crashsafari.com (and crashchrome.com — needless to say, don't visit either), adds numbers to the address bar as fast as it can — crashsafari.com/0, then /01, then /012, /0123, and eventually /0123456789101112131415... and so on. Each time it adds a number, that page is saved to your history — and it adds up fast.

This history and URL overload leads mobile browsers to crash and desktop ones to hang (You should still be able to force-quit the application if it's stalling). "What were you expecting?" reads the only text on the page.

Clicking on the nefarious link could result to a major annoyance — unsaved data could be lost — but it's unlikely to cause any lasting damage to your device.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Nearly 300,000 Drones Registered in First 30 Days: FAA]]> Fri, 22 Jan 2016 11:33:46 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/214*120/drones-again.jpg

Nearly 300,000 people have registered their drones in the first 30 days after the Federal Aviation Administration launched its online registration system on Dec. 21, NBC News repotted.

Anyone operating their small, unmanned aircraft before the system went live must register by Feb. 19. The rule applies to small, recreational drones weighing between 0.55 and 55 pounds. The FAA hopes to have a system in place for commercial drone operators by the spring.

The FAA says the new rules are needed to make skies safer from drones flying too close to commercial airplanes or crashing into places they’re not meant to be, like the White House.

Anyone who doesn’t register their drone could face fines and penalties that include three years in prison.  

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Dating App Tinder Adds STD Testing Locator]]> Fri, 22 Jan 2016 07:49:47 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Tinder+Screenshot.png

A feud between dating site Tinder and the AIDS Healthcare Foundation was settled on Thursday after the dating site agreed to add links to sexually transmitted disease testing locations, NBC News reported.

The battle between the Los Angeles based non-profit group and the operator of a popular dating app began last fall leading sexual health advocacy group put up billboards and advertisements in Los Angeles and New York, associating Tinder with sexually transmitted diseases such as Chlamydia and gonorrhea.

Tinder sent a "cease and desist" letter to the group after the billboards were erected. Now that Tinder is adding the STD testing locator to its application, the group is removing its billboards and advertisements mentioning the software.

Photo Credit: Courtesy Tinder]]>
<![CDATA[Amazon to Offer Full Refund on Hoverboards: Gov't]]> Thu, 21 Jan 2016 11:23:52 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/hoverboard+fire+bk.jpg

After telling consumers in the U.K. to dispose of their hoverboards and expect a full refund, Amazon has expanded its reimbursement program to the U.S.

The announcement, made by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission Chairman Elliot F. Kaye in a press release, comes as the federal regulatory agency is actively investigating a number of companies that make or sell hoverboards.

"For consumers who purchased a hoverboard from Amazon, they can return the product right now for a full refund," Kaye wrote in the press release. 

Kaye commended the online retail giant for "voluntarily stepping up" and "putting consumers safety first," and advised customers who purchased the self-balancing board to contact the company for a refund

The CPSC also cautioned against purchasing hoverboards that are labled Underwriters Laboratories (UL) certified. Some fire officials in the U.S. have advised parents to only purchase UL-labeled hoverboards, but Kaye said the global leader in product testing and inspection does not currently provide certification for the smart boards.

"The presence of a UL mark on hoverboards or their packaging should not be an indication to consumers of the product’s safety. In fact, any such mark is at best misleading and may even be a sign of a counterfeit product," Kaye said.

While the agency is also investigating 39 hoverboard fires across 19 states, focusing on the lithium-ion batteries that power the boards and "their interaction with the circuit boards," the CPSC suggests wearing protective gear, staying off roads, charging the boards away from combustible materials, and keeping a fire extinguisher nearby while using and charging the hoverboards.

With no safety standards for the popular boards, several U.S. airlines have already banned them from passenger flights and the U.S. Postal Service stopped shipping hoverboards by air.  

As of Thursday, Amazon continues to sell hoverboards on their site. There was no word from the online retailer on whether it will permanently pull the boards from its shelves. An email request for comment was not answered. 

Photo Credit: FDNY]]>
<![CDATA[SpaceX Rocket Bursts Into Flames]]> Mon, 18 Jan 2016 07:00:15 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/spacex-landing-explode.jpg A SpaceX rocket successfully launched a satellite into orbit on Monday, but the rocket's return landing was a rough one.]]> <![CDATA[Netflix Cracks Down on Spoofing for Access Foreign Shows]]> Thu, 14 Jan 2016 17:25:10 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-124755248.jpg

Netflix is taking steps to stop users from faking their location to get access to foreign shows and movies, NBC News reported.

Using online tools called proxies or virtual private networks allows users to go around copyright protections, which content providers don’t like.

Netflix’s policy has been laissez-faire, but in a blog post Thursday, the company says technology is now being used to prevent the use of these tools. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images for Netflix]]>
<![CDATA[Obama Administration Unveils $4B Plan for Self-Driving Cars]]> Thu, 14 Jan 2016 12:43:07 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/SelfDrivingCar-GettyImages-152766339.jpg

The White House will spend nearly $4 billion over ten years to accelerate the development of self-driving cars, according to a plan unveiled on Thursday, NBC News reported.

The move is part of an initiative President Barack Obama announced during his State of the Union address on Tuesday to build a “21st century transportation system.”

The White House wants to spend $3.9 billion for pilot programs to test “connected vehicle systems” throughout the country. The White House claims self-driving cars could cut down on accidents.

"We know that 83 percent of car accidents are due to human error," U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx said at the auto show in Detroit. "What happens if human error could be eliminated? That's a powerful possibility, and that's a possibility worth pursuing."  

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Americans Don't Want Devices Tracking Them at Home]]> Thu, 14 Jan 2016 11:24:32 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Gadgets-AP_164152250147.jpg

Americans don’t want their gadgets tracking their movements at home, according to a new Pew Research Center poll, NBC News reported.

The poll posed several hypothetical situations to test how much privacy people were willing to give up for convenience and savings.

Fifty-five percent of people polled found a hypothetical “inexpensive thermostat sensor” that would share data on when people are in the house and that would track their movements unacceptable. 

But 52 percent of Americans were more likely to allow their doctor to upload their personal health records. 

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Suit: Twitter 'Knowingly' Let Terrorists Use Social Network]]> Wed, 13 Jan 2016 23:26:24 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/twitter-isis-lawsuit.jpg

The family of a Florida defense contractor killed in a November terror attack while training security forces in Jordan is suing Twitter, claiming the company has knowingly allowed terrorist groups such as ISIS to use its social network to spread extremist propaganda.

According to court documents filed Wednesday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco, Lloyd "Carl" Fields Jr. was killed by a Jordanian police captain he was training at the International Police Training Center in Amman, which is operated and funded in part by the U.S. State Department. ISIS took credit for the attack, which also took the life of another American contractor, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit blames Twitter in part for the attack, claiming it allows extremists to recruit and spread violent ideology on its platform.

"For years, Twitter has knowingly permitted the terrorist group ISIS to use its social network as a tool for spreading extremist propaganda, raising funds and attracting new recruits," the suit says. "...Without Twitter, the explosive growth of ISIS over the last few years into the most feared terrorist group in the world would not have been possible."

According to the lawsuit, ISIS has an estimated 70,000 Twitter accounts, at least 79 of which were "official," and it posted at least 90 tweets every minute.

A Twitter spokesperson issued the following statement on Wednesday:

"While we believe the lawsuit is without merit, we are deeply saddened to hear of this family's terrible loss. Like people around the world, we are horrified by the atrocities perpetrated by extremist groups and their ripple effects on the Internet. Violent threats and the promotion of terrorism deserve no place on Twitter and, like other social networks, our rules make that clear. We have teams around the world actively investigating reports of rule violations, identifying violating conduct, partnering with organizations countering extremist content online, and working with law enforcement entities when appropriate."

This isn't the first time Twitter has been accused of offering a venue for terrorists. In December, the government of Turkey fined Twitter for refusing to remove content deemed "terrorist propaganda." Twitter responded by filing a lawsuit saying the fine was illegal.

<![CDATA[German App for Migrants Teaches Info, Language Skills]]> Wed, 13 Jan 2016 12:49:11 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/GermanyMigrants-AP_189095793769.jpg

There’s a new smartphone app that aims to help give basic information, language and customs to migrants and refugees streaming in to Germany from Syria, Iraq, Ukraine and other war-torn countries, NBC News reported.

“Ankommen,” meaning “arrive” or “come across,” is free on Google Play and will be available on the iOS system soon. It’s available in several different including English, Arabic and German.

Basic lessons in German and German culture are provided, with information on the various offices of the government with which migrants will have to interact.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Zuckerberg's Post on Daughter's Vaccination Irks Anti-Vaxxers]]> Tue, 12 Jan 2016 11:24:08 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/zuckerberg-Dec2015_Family_highres.jpg

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is clearly enjoying being a dad — like all proud new parents, he's been posting baby pictures on Facebook to keep everyone updated about baby Max.

His most recent post about Max came with a message: "Doctor's visit — time for vaccines!"

Being the influencer he is, Zuckerberg's post has been liked by more than three million people, who lauded his public stance on the controversial subject of vaccinations.

"As someone with autism, with a son with autism, as someone who is constantly watching good people put their own children at serious risk because of old, fraudulent fears of vaccines and autism... thank you for being sensible. Thank you for doing what's right and also for showing everyone else that it's the right thing to do as well," wrote commenter Stuart Duncan.

"A subtle political statement indeed, that's great! Who would've thought we'd come to an age where we'd need one on the subject of vaccines," wrote Vanya Kumar.

"It's kinda sad that we now live in a world in which we congratulate people for vaccinating their kids. Look at how far we have regressed due to science illiteracy," wrote Carlos Munoz.

But not all the attention has been positive. Although the majority praised Zuckerberg's decison to get his daughter vaccinated, anti-vaxxers criticized it.

"I am sorry to see you unnecessarily putting your kid at risk by responding to faux science and propaganda,” wrote commenter Stuart Morgan Kunkle.

According to a Wired magazine report last year, Silicon Valley day cares affiliated with tech companies have below-average vaccination rates.

The debate over vaccination took center stage in California right after a measles outbreak in Disneyland. More than 131 Californians were infected, but no one died from the outbreak. Only 81 of the 131 people infected had vaccination documentation.

Last June, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill that says that only children with serious health problems may opt out of school-mandated vaccinations. The law is intended to boost vaccination rated in the state.

"The science is clear that vaccines dramatically protect children against a number of infectious and dangerous diseases," Brown wrote while signing the bill. "While it's true that no medical intervention is without risk, the evidence shows that immunization powerfully benefits and protects the community."


Doctor's visit -- time for vaccines!

Posted by Mark Zuckerberg on Friday, January 8, 2016

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Mark Zuckerberg]]>
<![CDATA[SpaceX Plans Drone Ship Rocket Landing for Jan. 17 ]]> Thu, 07 Jan 2016 16:19:46 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/AP_211557185896.jpg

SpaceX confirmed it is planning on landing a Falcon 9 rocket on a drone ship at sea on Jan. 17, NBC News reported.

This launch will take off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. It will carry NASA’s Jason-3 satellite, which holds instruments to monitor the ocean's surface, collecting information about circulation patterns and perhaps rising sea levels.

The company succeeded Dec. 22 in making its first-stage rocket return safely to Earth and land upright at a predetermined location nears its launch pad at Cape Canaveral in Florida.

A previous attempt in January 2015 to land a Falcon 9 on a "drone ship" almost succeeded, but a last-minute failure saw the rocket topple over and explode.  

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Majority of Parents Monitor Teen's Digital Activity: Study]]> Thu, 07 Jan 2016 12:28:06 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/TeensTexting-GettyImages-573200639.jpg

More than 60 percent of parents said they’ve checked up on their teens’ Internet usage, text messages and call records, according to a new study released Thursday, NBC News reported.

The study was conducted by Pew Research Center and surveyed parents of teens aged 13 to 17. The study found that more parents take a hands-on approach to monitoring what their children do by monitoring websites, checking social media platforms, and friending or following their teen on social media platforms.

More than 65 percent of parents resorted to “digitally” grounding their kids by taking away their cellphone or Internet privileges. In addition, almost half of parents — 48 percent — said they knew the password to their teens’ email accounts, while 43 percent said they knew cellphone passwords.

While many parents may be actively snooping on their teens, less than a quarter said they used technology to monitor their children’s behavior.  

Photo Credit: Moment Editorial/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Robots Take Center Stage at CES 2016]]> Wed, 06 Jan 2016 19:01:23 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/206*120/robots-ces-010616.JPG Self-driving cars, build-your-own robots, and flat screens as thin as a sheet of glass and more was featured in Las Vegas at the CES show. Mekahlo Medina reports for the NBC4 News at 6 on Jan. 6, 2016.

Photo Credit: KNBC-TV]]>
<![CDATA[CES 2016: Reality of Self-Driving Cars]]> Thu, 07 Jan 2016 14:23:00 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/AP360467911099.jpg

It was bound to happen - the buzz had to wear off soon enough. Reality of the self-driving car just set in at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Dr. Gill Pratt, the new CEO of Toyota Research Institute, soberly delivered the blow while on the Toyota stage at CES.

"Cars are basically driving the way we drive," Pratt said.

While some car companies predict self-driving cars to hit the market by 2019 or 2020, Pratt told the crowd a true autonomous car, no human involvement whatsoever, is a very long way off.

"Most of what we have collectively accomplished with intelligent cars to date has been relatively easy because most driving is relatively easy," Pratt told NBC4. "Where we need to help is not where driving is easy. We need to solve driving when it's hard. Toyota Research Unit intends to address the hard part."

Baby Steps

The technology is still in its infancy, said Pratt. Sure, self-driving cars can detect other cars, stop when it senses another car, but the technology can't yet do what humans can do when they drive - react different to sometimes unknown situations.

Toyota wants the baby tech to grow up. It has invested $1 billion into research labs that snagged top talent from Google to focus on artificial intelligence and robots. One of labs will be at Stanford Research Park in Northern California and the other will be near MIT.

Pratt wants to get through the terrible twos and jump right into adolescence of the technology.

"We need to have the technology react to things like construction zones, sudden objects crossing into traffic in a way that humans would think it is a reasonable thing to do," he said.

Tech Daddy

Pratt is the best father to guide the technology's growth. He used to run DARPA's Robotics Challenge. DARPA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Defense responsible for the development of emerging technologies for use by the military.

Like any good father figure, Pratt won't put unrealistic expectations on when the totally autonomous car will replace humans from taking full control of the wheel. He knows the technology will grow up and when it does he wants it to be its best and the safest it can be.

James Kuffner, who used head Google's robotics division and is now on day three of his new job with Pratt, says raising self-driving car technology will come with patience and in stages.

"It is an evolution," he said. "There is a continuous spectrum between full manual control and full autonomous control, and there's going to be phased deployments."

Correction: A misspelling of Gill Pratt's name appeared in an earlier version of this article.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Top Apple Supplier Cuts Hours As iPhone Fears Rattle Investors]]> Wed, 06 Jan 2016 07:39:08 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/AP_10052606294.jpg

Foxconn, which assembles most of Apple's latest iPhones, will cut working hours over the week-long Lunar New Year holiday, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters, in a rare move that analysts interpreted as a sign of softening demand, NBC News reported.

Japanese daily Nikkei, citing parts suppliers, said Wednesday that output of the models would be cut by about 30 percent in January-March so dealers could unload stock. Apple shares lost 2.5 percent, and those of suppliers similarly fell.

Reports of slowing shipments and mounting inventories of the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus, as well as tepid forecasts from suppliers, have pushed Apple investors into unfamiliar territory after years of booming sales and surging shares. 

<![CDATA[Latest Tech Advancements Unveiled at CES in Las Vegas]]> Wed, 06 Jan 2016 07:19:07 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/NC_cesam0106_1500x845.jpg The latest cutting-edge technology is on display at the ongoing Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.]]> <![CDATA[Twitter Expected to Allow 10,000-Character Tweets]]> Wed, 06 Jan 2016 12:57:29 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-180483176.jpg

Soon, Twitter users may not have to choose their words quite so wisely.

The San Francisco company is expected to alter its fundamental premise by allowing tweets as long as 10,000 characters — more than 78 times longer than the current limit of 140 characters.

The company has not confirmed that the change is coming, but sources familiar with the development have spoken anonymously to the Wall Street Journal and Re/code. The size limit of direct messages jumped to 10,000 characters in July, when co-founder Jack Dorsey rejoined the company as its chief executive officer.

Twitter established the 140-character ceiling from the start in 2006, a response to the 160-character limit that SMS text messages had on mobile phones.

Photo Credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Car Companies Investing Heavily In New Tech]]> Tue, 05 Jan 2016 20:44:56 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Car_Companies_Investing_Heavily_In_New_Tech_1200x675_596473923660.jpg At the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show, automakers are demonstrating their commitment to tech. Mekahlo Medina reports for NBC4 News on Jan. 5, 2016.]]> <![CDATA[CES 2016: Robots, VR and a Slick Concept Car]]> Tue, 05 Jan 2016 13:30:46 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/faraday-future-ffzero1-concept-car.jpg

The Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas hasn't even started, but the unveiling of new technology is underway.

The most hyped unveil came from a little known electric car company named Faraday Future, which is bankrolled by Chinese investors and is based in California.

Faraday Future has been operating in stealth mode for nearly two years, but decided to unveil what it has been working on during CES. Under the curtain is the company's FFZero1 concept car, an ultra-sleek electric car that looks like it belongs on a race track. The company says it has 1,000 horsepower and can go 0-60 mph in under three seconds. Top speeds are over 200 mph.

"I prefer to think of the FFZero1 not as a concept car, but more of a car of concepts," said Richard Kim, the lead designer. "(It's an) extreme test bed for the fundamental idea for what we are working on for our up-and-coming production vehicles."

The company is expected to unveil its line up within the year, and it could be the biggest challenger to Tesla in the electric car market.

Invasion of the Robots

It didn't matter where you look at the first few event of CES this year, robots were everywhere.
Robots cleaned floors, windows and projected screens on any wall you want - and some even crafted cocktails. The Somoabar Robotic Bartender integrates Wi-Fi connectivity, onboard sensors, electronic ingredient tagging and automated cleaning to make up to 300 different cocktails with the touch of your smartphone app.

Personalized Technology

Smart devices are being created to make your life easier. A smart shower head called Hydrao has built-in LED lights that change color as more and more water is used. If you shower too long, it flashes red to suggest it might be time to get out.

The Beddit sleep tracker can be placed in a pillow and accurately tracks your sleep. It even tracks your resting heart-rate.You are given a score and then the device recommendations how to get that score up.

Kolibree developed the smart toothbrush. The brush is packed with sensors that turns brushing into a game. The game intelligently knows how and where you're brushing your teeth thanks to Bluetooth technology built into the brush and reminds kids to properly brush.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Faraday Future]]>
<![CDATA[The Best Innovations of CES 2016]]> Wed, 06 Jan 2016 16:59:53 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/ces-th-AP_36665843408.jpg See the best gizmos and gadgets from the floor of the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, from solar-powered stoves, to concept cars, to developments in virtual reality.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Brand New Gadgets Revealed CES 2016]]> Mon, 04 Jan 2016 19:39:53 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Brand_New_Gadgets_Revealed_At_The_2016_CES_1200x675_595794499612.jpg A sneak peek into the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas Monday revealed the gagdets to watch were HDR televisions, virtual reality and robots. Mekahlo Medina reports for the NBC4 News at 5 & 6 on Monday, Jan. 4, 2016. ]]> <![CDATA[Zuckerberg Plans to Build Robot]]> Mon, 04 Jan 2016 07:41:58 -0800 http://media.nbclosangeles.com/images/213*120/Zuckerberg-Robot-467503096.jpg

Mark Zuckerberg's goals for 2016 are certainly ambitious.

In the past, the Facebook CEO challenged himself to read two books a month, learn Mandarin, or meet someone new every day. This year, he wants to build a robot.

The tech entrepreneur took to Facebook on Sunday to announce his plans to build artificial intelligence in his California home.

Zuckerberg said he envisions his AI to be "like Jarvis of 'Iron Man,'" though he has yet to give it a name. He said the project will be his "personal challenge of 2016." 

"I’ll start teaching it to understand my voice to control everything in our home — music, lights, temperature and so on," the Facebook founder wrote. "I’ll teach it to let friends in by looking at their faces when they ring the doorbell. I’ll teach it to let me know if anything is going on in Max’s room that I need to check on when I’m not with her."

Max, short for Maxima, is Zuckerberg's newborn daughter with wife Dr. Priscilla Chen. The new parents have been posting cute pictures of the baby since her birth in November.

Commenters on the post were positive about the Facebook founder’s goal. Some shared their own resolutions, like beating cancer or simply cleaning the house.

"And here I am just hoping to organize the walk-in closet," wrote one self-deprecating commenter.

"In a few years maybe you’ll have a robot to do it for you," the Facebook CEO blithely responded.

Zuckerberg answered many of the comments, mentioning his forthcoming plan to beam the Internet down to cities from solar-powered planes, and clearing up still-circulating rumors that he's giving away his fortune to users of the social media site.

His reply to one user garnered nearly 20,000 likes.

The commenter said she keeps telling her granddaughters to date the nerd in school who "may turn out to be a Mark Zuckerberg!"

"Even better would be to encourage them to ​*be*​ the nerd in their school so they can be the next successful inventor!" Zuckerberg replied.

Photo Credit: Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images
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