FCC: TracFone Made Up 'Fictitious' Customers To Defraud Low-Income Program

TracFone Wireless is facing a potential $6 million fine for allegedly defrauding a government program that provides discount telecom service to poor people. Ars Technica: The Federal Communications Commission proposed the fine against TracFone yesterday, saying the prepaid wireless provider obtained FCC Lifeline funding by "enroll[ing] fictitious subscriber accounts." TracFone improperly sought and received more than $1 million from Lifeline, the FCC said. The FCC press release said: "TracFone...
Tags: Florida, Texas, Fcc, Tech, Ars Technica, Federal Communications Commission, Social Security Number, TracFone, Enforcement Bureau, Reuters Read, TracFone Wireless, FCC Lifeline

Casa Systems CEO Pays $15.3 Million for Striking La Jolla Mansion

One of the San Diego area’s most visually dramatic homes recently sold for just over $15 million, placing it among the biggest local transactions on record. Deeds and documents reveal the La Jolla property was acquired by Boston-based tech tycoon Jerry Guo, the longtime president and CEO of telecommunications juggernaut Casa Systems, and his wife […]
Tags: Boston, Tech, San Diego, Moguls, La Jolla, Sotheby's International Realty, Casa Systems, Jerry Guo, Striking La Jolla Mansion

Learn how to effectively use WordPress and WooCommerce to promote your brand

If you’ve never heard of WooCommerce, it’s essential the way small businesses operate in WordPress, the world’s most popular web content management system. With WooCommerce, web entrepreneurs can set up and run an e-commerce store, selling products, accepting payments and safeguarding privacy for both buyers and sellers. As the engine behind 35 percent of all websites, it should be no surprise that WooCommerce is also a dominating force in the world of online business. So the training found in T...
Tags: Google, Post, News, Wordpress, Shop, Elementor

Physical Force Alone Spurs Gene Expressions, Study Reveals

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Phys.Org: Cells will ramp up gene expression in response to physical forces alone, a new study finds. Gene activation, the first step of protein production, starts less than one millisecond after a cell is stretched -- hundreds of times faster than chemical signals can travel, the researchers report. The scientists tested forces that are biologically relevant -- equivalent to those exerted on human cells by breathing, exercising or vocalizing. They report...
Tags: Tech, Gene

Apple Music Was Second Biggest Global Music Streaming Service in 2019

Global online music streaming subscriptions were up 32 percent year-over-year in 2019, hitting 358 million subscribers, according to new estimates shared today by Counterpoint Research. Spotify was the market leader with a 31 percent share of total revenue and a 35 percent share of total paid subscriptions, while Apple Music earned the second place slot with a 24 percent share of total revenues in the industry and a 19 percent share of the total paid subscriptions. ‌Apple Music‌'s subscriptio...
Tags: Apple, Spotify, Apple Music, Spotify Spotify, Counterpoint Research, Amazon Apple Google, Tencent Music, Counterpoint Research Spotify, Amazon Music YouTube Music, Similarly Amazon Music

Twitter Removes 9,000 Accounts Pushing Coronavirus Propaganda Praising the United Arab Emirates

An anonymous reader quotes a report from BuzzFeed News: On April 2, Twitter took down a pro-United Arab Emirates network of accounts that was pushing propaganda about the coronavirus pandemic and criticizing Turkey's military intervention in Libya. Previously tied to marketing firms in the region, parts of this network were removed by Facebook and Twitter last year. The network was made up of roughly 9,000 accounts, according to disinformation research firm DFRLab and independent researcher Josh...
Tags: Facebook, Twitter, China, Tech, Turkey, Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Libya, Uae, UAE Saudi Arabia, Josh Russell Although, Wuhan China Today

Zoom admits some calls were routed through China by mistake

Hours after security researchers at Citizen Lab reported that some Zoom calls were routed through China, the video conferencing platform has offered an apology and a partial explanation. To recap, Zoom has faced a barrage of headlines this week over its security policies and privacy practices, as hundreds of millions forced to work from home during the coronavirus pandemic still need to communicate with each other. The latest findings landed earlier today when Citizen Lab researchers said tha...
Tags: Security, Europe, New York, China, Tech, Encryption, Cryptography, Beijing, Data Protection, North America, Video Conferencing, Zoom, Citizen Lab, Eric Yuan, Bill Marczak, Coronavirus

Amazon To Delay Marketing Event Prime Day Due To Coronavirus

An anonymous reader shares a report: Amazon is postponing its major summer shopping event Prime Day at least until August and expects potentially a $100 million hit from excess devices it may now have to sell at a discount, according to internal meeting notes seen by Reuters. Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Tags: Amazon, Tech, Reuters

SpaceX Loses Its Third Starship Prototype During a Cryogenic Test

For a third time, SpaceX lost one of its Starship prototype spacecrafts during a pressure test at the company's test site in Boca Chica, Texas. Ars Technica reports: This week, SpaceX workers in South Texas loaded the third full-scale Starship prototype -- SN3 -- onto a test stand at the company's Boca Chica launch site. On Wednesday night, they pressure-tested the vehicle at ambient temperature with nitrogen, and SN3 performed fine. On Thursday night SpaceX began cryo-testing the vehicle, which...
Tags: Spacex, Elon Musk, Tech, South Texas, Boca Chica, Boca Chica Texas Ars Technica

ZmURL customizes Zoom link previews with images & event sites

Sick of sharing those generic Zoom video call invites that all look the same? Wish your Zoom link preview’s headline and image actually described your meeting? Want to protect your Zoom calls from trolls by making attendees RSVP to get your link? has you covered. Launching today, ZmURL is a free tool that lets you customize your Zoom video call invite URL with a title, explanation, and image that will show up when you share the link on Twitter, Facebook, or elsewhere. zmurl also let...
Tags: Google, Social, Startups, TC, Mobile, Apps, New York, Media, San Francisco, Events, Tech, Fbi, Beijing, New York Times, Facetime, Video Chat

Zelos is like a cross-game battle pass, rewarding you for completing challenges in games you already play

People seem to love the concept of the battle pass. Largely popularized by Fortnite, battle passes reward players for playing well, and playing often. The better you do, the more XP you earn; the more XP you earn, the more stuff (new looks for your character, or victory dances to fire off at the end of a gunfight) you unlock. Willing to cough up a few bucks for an optional “premium” battle pass? That’ll open up a whole new set of rewards. The model has made its way into countless games over the ...
Tags: TC, La, Tech, Tong, Zelos, PUBG, Jeffrey Tong, YC W20, Rocket League Zelos, EXP EXP, Derek Chiang, Dfinity Tong

Siri Might Be Getting a Huge Improvement

Apple regularly acquires artificial intelligence startups to build up Siri’s capabilities, but its latest purchase might make Siri more conversational. According to Bloomberg, Apple just bought Voysis, an AI startup that makes it easier to use a voice assistant to buy stuff in shopping apps.Read more...
Tags: Apple, Science, Siri, Voice Assistants, Bloomberg Apple, Voysis, How Siri Gets Her Groove Back

Broadband Engineers Threatened Due To 5G Coronavirus Conspiracies

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: Telecoms engineers are facing verbal and physical threats during the lockdown, as baseless conspiracy theories linking coronavirus to the roll-out of 5G technology spread by celebrities such as Amanda Holden prompt members of the public to abuse those maintaining vital mobile phone and broadband networks. Facebook has removed one anti-5G group in which users were being encouraged to supply footage of them destroying mobile phone equipment, w...
Tags: Facebook, Tech, Guardian, Ee, Birmingham, Amanda Holden, Mobile UK

How to disable Apple CarPlay

Not everyone will want to use Apple CarPlay -- here is how to disable CarPlay on your vehicle without hassle.
Tags: Apple, Cars, Trends, How-to, Apple Car Play, Car infotainment

Apple is offering store workers $100 toward work-from-home gear and a new stress-management tool as other retailers cut costs and layoff employees (AAPL)

Apple has begun offering a $100 reimbursement to store employees working from home and a new mental health benefit. The benefits signal that Apple is continuing to invest in its retail workforce as its stores remain closed. The offerings also come as other major retail chains are resorting to layoffs and furloughs as nonessential businesses across the US remain closed. Apple Stores outside of China have been temporarily closed until further notice since the middle of March. Visit Business Insi...
Tags: Apple, Elon Musk, China, US, Trends, Bloomberg, Tim Cook, Wall Street Journal, Amtrak, Aapl, Greater China, Apple Stores, Macy s JCPenny the Gap

As tech layoffs surge, some support emerges for those without a job

The massive surge of COVID-19-related layoffs has put tech in a unique position. While the startup world is facing layoffs itself, it is also trying to help get people back to work. Back at the end of 2019, the SoftBank-backed belt-tightening period led to a flurry of crowdsourced spreadsheets with employee names from companies like Oyo, WeWork, Zume and more. The spreadsheets popped up as a bet on the network effect, with the ultimate goal of hoping the sheets land in the hands of a recruiter l...
Tags: TC, Layoffs, Colorado, Boston, Softbank, Linkedin, Tech, Chicago, Reddit, Rover, Seattle, Hiring, Anderson, Madrona Venture Group, Textio, Murphy

Apple CEO Tim Cook to Deliver Virtual Commencement Address for Ohio State University Students

Apple CEO Tim Cook will deliver the commencement address at Ohio State University's virtual commencement event that's set to take place on May 3, Ohio State President Michael Drake announced today. The event, which will be live streamed, will kick off at noon local time, with 12,000 diplomas to be awarded virtually to students. The broadcast will include Cook's commencement speech, musical performances, and with Drake and university officials in traditional commencement regalia at Ohio Stadium,...
Tags: Apple, Cook, Tim Cook, Drake, Ohio State, Ohio State University, Michael Drake, Ohio Stadium, Ohio State University Students, Joe Tag

Potential Vaccine Generates Enough Antibodies To Fight Off Virus

Slashdot readers schwit1 and Futurepower(R) are sharing news about a potential coronavirus vaccine that has been found to produce antibodies capable of fighting off Covid-19. The Independent reports: The vaccine, which was tested on mice by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, generated the antibodies in quantities thought to be enough to "neutralize" the virus within two weeks of injection. The study's authors are now set to apply to the U.S. Food and Drug Administrat...
Tags: Tech, Pittsburgh, U S Food and Drug Administration, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Futurepower, COVID

‘Home Before Dark’ Showrunner Dana Fox and Director Jon M. Chu on Making Dark Subject Matter Accessible [Interview]

Director Jon M. Chu has built his career making mostly bright, poppy entertainment like Step Up 3D, Jem and the Holograms, Crazy Rich Asians, and the upcoming In the Heights. But he’s dipping into darker territory in Home Before Dark, a new AppleTV+ drama which hails from creators/showrunners Dana Fox (New Girl) and Dara Resnik (Daredevil). It’s a mystery series centering on 9-year-old journalist named Hilde Lisko, played by The Florida Project’s Brooklynn Prince, and inspired by a real-life ki...
Tags: Featured Stories Sidebar, AppleTV, Drama, Features, Interviews, Mystery/Suspense, Brooklynn Prince, Dana Fox, Home Before Dark, Jim-Sturgess

EU Rules Rental Car Companies Don't Need To Pay A License To Rent Cars With Radios That Might Play Music

Mike Masnick, reporting at TechDirt: Five years ago, we wrote about another such crazy demand -- a PRO (Performance Rights Organizations (PROs), sometimes known as "Collection Societies," that have a long history of demanding licensing for just about every damn thing) in Sweden demanding that rental car companies pay a performance license because their cars had radios, and since "the public" could rent their cards and listen to the radio, that constituted "a communication to the public" that req...
Tags: Sweden, Tech, Eu, Mike Masnick, Court of Justice

Before suing NSO Group, Facebook allegedly sought their software to better spy on users

Facebook’s WhatsApp is in the midst of a lawsuit against Israeli mobile surveillance outfit NSO Group. But before complaining about the company’s methods, Facebook seems to have wanted to use them for its own purposes, according to testimony from NSO founder Shalev Hulio. Last year brought news of an exploit that could be used to install one of NSO’s spyware packages, Pegasus, on devices using WhatsApp. The latter sued the former over it, saying that over a hundred human rights activists, jou...
Tags: Apple, Security, Social, Facebook, Apps, Privacy, Tech, Whatsapp, Pegasus, Vpn, Jeff Bezos, NSO, Onavo, Facebook A Facebook, NSO Group, Shalev Hulio

Google research makes for an effortless robotic dog trot

As capable as robots are, the original animals after which they tend to be designed are always much, much better. That’s partly because it’s difficult to learn how to walk like a dog directly from a dog — but this research from Google’s AI labs make it considerably easier. The goal of this research, a collaboration with UC Berkeley, was to find a way to efficiently and automatically transfer “agile behaviors” like a light-footed trot or spin from their source (a good dog) to a quadrupedal robot....
Tags: Google, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Robots, Robotics, Berkeley, UC Berkeley, Georgia Institute of Technology, Biomimetic, Google AI, Biomimesis

'Zoombombing' Is a Federal Offense That Could Result In Imprisonment, Prosecutors Warn

"Zoomboming," where someone successfully invades a public or private meeting over the videoconferencing platform to broadcast shock videos, pornography, or other disruptive content, could result in fines and possible imprisonment, according to federal prosecutors. The Verge reports: The warning was posted as a press release to the Department of Justice's website under the U.S. Attorney's office for the state's Eastern district with support from the state attorney general and the FBI. Now, prosec...
Tags: Tech, Fbi, Department Of Justice, Eastern, Zoomboming

Trump: CDC Recommends Cloth Face Covering To Protect Against Coronavirus

President Trump says the CDC now recommends using a cloth face covering to protect against coronavirus, but said he does not plan to do so himself. CNBC reports: Trump stressed that the recommendations were merely voluntary, not required. "I don't think I'm going to be doing it" he said as he announced the new guidance. The CDC's website explained that the recommendations were updated following new studies that some infected people can transmit the coronavirus even without displaying symptoms of...
Tags: Cdc, Tech, Cnbc, Trump

Want to survive the downturn? Better build a platform

When you look at the most successful companies in the world, they are almost never just one simple service. Instead, they offer a platform with a range of services and an ability to connect to it to allow external partners and developers to extend the base functionality that the company provides. Aspiring to be a platform and actually succeeding at building one are not the same. While every startup probably sees themselves as becoming a platform play eventually, the fact is it’s hard to build on...
Tags: Google, Amazon, Cloud, Facebook, Enterprise, Microsoft, Tech, SaaS, Salesforce, Oracle, Platforms, Scale Venture Partners, Boxworks, MIT Sloan Review, Michael A Cusumano David B Yoffie, Annabelle Gawer

Pandemic puts the brakes on micromobility

As of this writing, nearly a million people globally have been infected with the novel coronavirus and 50,322 have died. Healthcare systems are overwhelmed, consumers and profiteers are hoarding supplies and some service workers have launched strikes while many others have been let go. In the world of micromobility, we’ve seen Bird lay off hundreds of employees and Lime is reportedly gearing up for layoffs of its own. Ride Report creates software that enables cities to better work with micromobi...
Tags: Startups, TC, Transportation, Tech, Bird, Spin, Lime, Henderson, William Henderson, Micromobility, Extra Crunch, Coronavirus, COVID-19

Zoom will enable waiting rooms by default to stop Zoombombing

Zoom is making some drastic changes to prevent rampant abuse as trolls attack publicly-shared video calls. Starting April 5th, it will require passwords to enter calls via Meeting ID, since these may be guessed or reused. Meanwhile, it will change virtual waiting rooms to be on by default so hosts have to manually admit attendees. The changes could prevent “Zoombombing”, a term I coined two weeks ago to describe malicious actors entering Zoom calls and disrupting them by screensharing offensive ...
Tags: TC, Tech, Zoombombing

SEO And Your Website’s Online Reputation

In today’s online access, people have the power to research you and your business before they engage any transactions with you. The links and information that appear on the first few pages of Google when your name is searched for are what potential partners perceive you are. That’s why online reputation should be your priority if you want to create that powerful first impression. In this article, you’ll learn how the right SEO strategy will accomplish the following areas: – Optimize pages of you...
Tags: Google, General, Radio

Alabama's use of Apple watches to track football players sets off rules debate

Alabama has sent Apple watches to players to monitor them during the COVID-19 pandemic, which may or may not be an NCAA rules violation.         [Author: USA TODAY]
Tags: Apple, Usa, News, Alabama, Ncaa, Usa Today

Apple Acquires AI Startup Voysis to Improve Siri

Apple has purchased artificial intelligence startup Voysis with the aim of improving Siri, reports Bloomberg. Voysis offers a platform that allows digital voice assistants to better understand natural language. The company worked to improve voice assistants in online shopping apps, allowing software to better interpret requests from users. The website, which is now defunct, said that the technology used client databases with AI tools that deeply understand the specifics of products, services,...
Tags: Apple, Featured, Siri, Bloomberg, Artificial Intelligence, Apple acquisition, Siri Apple, Voysis, Siri zwnj, Apple Acquires AI Startup Voysis, Bloomberg Voysis, Turi VocalIQ Perceptio Emotient

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