June 19


Amazon’s Fire brand of tablets and smartphones has mostly been panned as a flop. The company’s intense focus on being cheap and transferring every last penny of saved value onto the customer seemingly doesn’t translate into a culture good at building attractive devices, it seems. Nonetheless, Amazon has an updated version of the Fire OS that powers these things out and available for developers to test their apps on.

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Through its Digital News Initiative launched last April, Google has selected three projects to honor with its Computational Journalism Research Award in Europe. Google says that each project it selected “create[s] innovative new tools and open source software that will support online journalism and benefit readers.” In addition to being highlighted by Google with an award, these recipients also receives cash funding as well as computing credit to support their projects: expand full story


California’s Department of Motor Vehicles has released brief factual details of six accidents involving Google and Delphi self-driving cars, after the Associated Press successfully argued that legitimate public interest in the safety of the cars outweighed normal confidentiality rules. Self-driving cars were not found to be at fault in any of the accidents, and there were no injuries.

According to the reports, most of the cars were in self-driving mode when the accidents happened, and the other driver caused the accident. None of the crashes were serious enough to injure the person the state requires to sit behind the wheel, and the reports say none of the people in the other cars were treated for injuries either.

Five of the six accidents involved Google cars, and four of those were with the car in self-driving mode. The DMV was unaware of eight other accidents involving Google autonomous cars until the company shared the information during a conference call in April …  expand full story

June 18

Google controls most of the search engine market in Europe, and as a result receives most ‘right to be forgotten’ requests, those things where individuals can request the de-listing of links to sensitive information about themselves that are deemed out-dated or irrelevant. But more than half of requests are denied, and of those that are appealed, most of those are too denied – which the European Union says is just fine.

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