Internet

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For a long time, Google Fiber was the most exciting broadband provider out there. Cities wanted it, tech people drooled over it; and on a loftier level, it even promised to help bridge the “digital divide” between rich and poor. But now, things are looking bleak: Yesterday, Bloomberg reported that Google Fiber is being scaled back dramatically (again) as it named Greg McCray its new CEO, with “several hundred” of its employees in that division being sent to other areas of the company.

Google Fiber, part of the Access division of Google’s parent company Alphabet, was launched in 2010 in Kansas City, providing gigabit broadband and TV services over fiber optic cables.

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Facebook and Google tackle fake news ahead of French elections (1)

Fake news on Facebook and Google reached millions of people during US elections, and France wants to make sure its own presidential contests aren’t disrupted. Compounding the risk, a lot of fake US news reportedly came from Russia, and Marine Le Pen’s far right National Front party is funded by Russian banks friendly with Vladimir Putin. As such, Facebook has teamed with eight major news organizations including Agence France Presse (AFP), LeMonde and Les Echos to curb false information during France’s April elections.

If users report an article, it’ll be sent to a special portal manned by media experts.

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Facebook is changing how it talks about privacy

Facebook is now making it easier to keep your information private and secure.

As part of Data Privacy Day on Jan. 28, Facebook is launching a new version of its Privacy Basics page to help people understand how to take control of their information on the site.

The new site is mobile-friendly and redesigned based on user feedback. Facebook is also partnering with state attorneys general, privacy experts and others to help users understand how to manage their privacy online. There are 32 guides in 44 languages on the site, covering topics like managing your privacy, customizing who can view different parts of your profile and ways to increase account security.

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New LinkedIn Site Design Encourages Engagement

LinkedIn on Thursday announced a new look tied to a complete overhaul of its technology architecture, which brings conversations and content front and center.

The redesign brings the LinkedIn desktop in line with the mobile browser version launched in 2015. LinkedIn will roll out its new desktop globally over the next few weeks.

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The Internet of Things, or IoT, seems to be the big headline in tech news lately.

Perhaps you’ve heard of smart remotes, outlets, thermostats or alarm systems, but with all the recent development in this area, there are probably quite a few devices that you haven’t yet considered. Here are six worth adding to your tech radar.

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Two leaders in the field of artificial intelligence have announced that they’re open-sourcing their AI platforms.

After investing in building rich simulated environments to serve as laboratories for AI research, Google’s DeepMind Lab on Saturday said it would open the platform for the broader research community’s use.

DeepMind has been using its AI lab for some time, and it has “only barely scratched the surface of what is possible” in it, noted team members Charlie Beattie, Joel Leibo, Stig Petersen and Shane Legg in an online post.

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This is my promised column on data security and the Internet of Things (IoT). The recent Dyn DDoS attack showed the IoT is going to be a huge problem as networked devices like webcams are turned into zombie hoards. Fortunately I think I may have a solution to the problem. Really.

I’m an idiot today, but back in the early 1990’s I ran a startup that built one of the Internet’s earliest Content Distribution Networks (CDN), only we didn’t call it that because the term had not yet been invented.

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Network outages are a major source of pain for businesses, so understanding what causes them is an important part of preventing them in the first place.

A new survey from Veriflow reveals that complexity and human error are high on the list as contributing to network problems.

Of 300 plus network professionals responding to the survey, 97 percent admit that human factors cause network outages.

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You don’t need a massive botnet to launch overwhelming denial of service attacks — in some cases, a personal PC and so-so broadband are all that’s required. Researchers at TDC Security Operations Center have revealed a new attack technique, BlackNurse, that can take down large servers using just one computer (in this case, a laptop) and at least 15Mbps of bandwidth.

Instead of bombarding a server with traffic, you send specially formed Internet Control Message Protocol packets that overwhelm the processors on server firewalls from Cisco, Palo Alto Networks and others. The firewalls end up dropping so much data that they effectively knock servers out of commission, even if they have tons of network capacity.

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A key hurdle to widespread gigabit-speed Internet is the high cost of getting fiber optic lines over the last mile — from the fiber backbone in nearby streets to each house.

But increasingly, cellular operators, broadband providers including Google Fiber and several startups are exploring a new, less expensive way to bridge the last mile gap – wireless technology.

Google Fiber – which named San Diego as a potential city for building an ultra-fast fiber optic Internet network — said last month that it would pause future fiber optic roll outs in San Diego and seven other potential Google Fiber cities while it explored new approaches.

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