Starting September 2018, smartphones will be banned from schools entirely by order of the French ministry of education. Students, who already can't use them in the classroom, will also be forbidden from using them during breaks, lunches, and in between classes. The ban is upsetting students, teachers, and parents alike, but research shows that a lack of smartphones in the classroom improves children's learning.
Research is on Bloomberg—and the French government’s—side. According to a 2015 working paper (pdf) published by the London School of Economics, schools that banned mobile phones saw test scores for their 16-year-olds improve by 6.4%, or the equivalent of adding five days to the school year. “We found that not only did student achievement improve, but also that low-achieving and low-income students gained the most,” economists Philippe Beland and Richard Murphy told the BBC.
It’s not yet clear how the French ban will…
Former Facebook executive Chamath Palihapitiya criticises not just Facebook but Silicon Valley in general for creating "dopamine-driven feedback loops" that are destroying societies by fueling misinformation and mistrust while preventing civil discourse and co-operation.
These former employees have all spoken out at a time when worry about Facebook’s power is reaching fever pitch. In the past year, concerns about the company’s role in the US election and its capacity to amplify fake news have grown, while other reports have focused on how the social media site has been implicated in atrocities like the “ethnic cleansing” of Myanmar’s Rohingya ethnic group.
In his talk, Palihapitiya criticized not only Facebook, but Silicon Valley’s entire system of venture capital funding. He said that investors pump money into “shitty, useless, idiotic companies,” rather than addressing real problems like climate change and disease.…
Journalistic website Orb discovered through a first-of-its-kind study that microscopic plastic pollution has reached the very bottom of the food chain and it is working its way into our water and food. Worse, some of these plastic fibers are made with plasticizers that contain endocrine disrupting chemicals, BPA, phthalates, flame retardants, and toxic heavy metals — and we are eating them.
If plastic fibers are in your water, experts say they’re surely in your food as well — baby formula, pasta, soups, and sauces, whether from the kitchen or the grocery. Plastic fibers may leaven your pizza crust, and a forthcoming study says it’s likely in the craft beer you’ll drink to chase the pepperoni down.
It gets worse. Plastic is all but indestructible, meaning plastic waste doesn’t biodegrade; rather, it only breaks down into smaller pieces of itself, even down to particles in nanometer scale — one-one…
Watch an AI system combined with a robotic arm rapidly and efficiently determine what is trash and what is recyclable.
Artificial intelligence and robotic technology lead to this system that is far better than humans at removing trash from otherwise recyclable refuse. Video courtesy of Bulk Handling Systems.
On my trusty desktop I like running Ubuntu's LTS (long term support) version.
This means that while I don't get the latest lame-assed eye-candy or that my icons don't go bouncing up and down in the cutest of cute ways, when I need to get shit done I can get shit done because things will consistently work and stay out of my way. Try doing that with Windows 10. Yeah, I didn't think so.
I know this may come as a total shock in an era where the personal computer is fading and everyone is using smartphones and tablets, but let's be perfectly honest here: handhelds are locked-down consumer devices used by idiots to make their idiocy public on Lamebook — special thanks to Mark Zuckerberg and Larry Page for turning the Internet into a giant pile of shit for personal monetary gain. If you have had to urgently…238More
On TED, Scott Galloway explains how big internet companies got to where they are now and what their real goal is, but that ultimately it is our fault as the users for letting this happen. Disturbing but unsurprising that shareholde value is what is prized the most in our society..
Their defense: "Facebook is not a media company; it's a technology company." You create original content, you pay sports leagues to give you original content, you run advertising against it -- boom! -- you're a media company. Just in the last few days, Sheryl Sandberg has repeated this lie, that "We are not a media company." Facebook has openly embraced the margins of celebrity and the influence of a media company yet seems to be allergic to the responsibilities of a media company. Imagine McDonald's. We find…
Like a comic book character determined to inflict revenge on a bunch of sleazy criminals, Bloomberg Businessweek looks at Andrew Therrien — hounded by aggressive debt collectors looking for money he didn't own — who made it his personal mission to track these people down and make them pay.
When the scammers started to hound Therrien, he hounded them right back. Obsessed with payback, he spent hundreds of hours investigating the dirty side of debt. By day he was still promoting ice cream brands and hiring models for liquor store tastings. But in his spare time, he was living out a revenge fantasy. He befriended loan sharks and blackmailed crooked collectors, getting them to divulge their suppliers, and then their suppliers above them. In method, Therrien was like a prosecutor flipping gangster underlings to get to lieutenants and then the boss. In spirit, he was a bit like Liam…
It is easy to use the Sarco capsule. It just requires an access code. Anyone who wants to end their life is required to complete an online mental questionnaire in order to obtain a 4-digit code that will open the capsule. Once it is opened, the person can get inside and lie down inside the device and start it either by pressing a button, voice activation or a series of blinks. Once the lid is closed, the machine gets filled with liquid nitrogen which in turn lowers the oxygen level. Within a few minutes the person inside is dead. Later, the capsule can be removed to be used as a coffin.
Because Net Neutrality is part of a much larger structural problem that we have to deal with in Canada and around the world.
Like their American counterparts, Canada’s telecom giants have so much control over the market they can embrace what I call the Big Telecom price-gouging cycle [...]. Basically, Telecoms use their fists full of cash and their army of lobbyists to shape laws that enable them to price-gouge people across Canada, then they reinvest a portion of that parasitic revenue into more lobbying and control.
In addition to being massively inefficient, this broken telecom market has enabled telecom giants to extract money from Canadian families, community groups…
If you have ever wondered how Facebook makes suggestions of people you might know, it does so not just with the data you provide it, but with a "shadow profile" it builds about you made of information it gathers from everyone else around you and to which you have absolutely no control over.
Connections like these seem inexplicable if you assume Facebook only knows what you’ve told it about yourself. They’re less mysterious if you know about the other file Facebook keeps on you—one that you can’t see or control.
Behind the Facebook profile you’ve built for yourself is another one, a shadow profile, built from the inboxes and smartphones of other Facebook users. Contact information you’ve never given the network gets associated with your account, making it easier for Facebook to more completely…
|“When automation starts displacing lawyers, accountants and bankers, then we might see some push-back.” #Future|
|Knowing how to operate a smartphone does not qualify as being tech savvy. #Video|
|“Session replay scripts collect can’t reasonably be expected to be kept anonymous.” #Privacy|
|“Governments around the world are dramatically increasing their efforts to manipulate information on social media.” #Politics|
|“Astronomers have sent a radio message to a neighbouring star system.” #Space|
|When the Wrong Hastag Can Get You Killed by an Assassination Drone #Future|
|“That's a drawback to the three-word system: a universal geocode isn't worth much if it's not, well, universal.” #Companies|
|“It saddens me to say it, but we are approaching the end of the automotive era.” #Driving|
|“Semis, not personal cars, are the smartest use of autonomous technology.” #Robots|
|“Tech is like the tobacco industry.” #Internet|
|Restoring Old Die-Cast Toy Cars #Games|
|“A fraudster poses as an attractive woman and encourages a man to masturbate in front of a webcam.” #Scams|
|“Previously unknown plastic contamination in the tap water of cities around the world.”|
|“He says he tries to use Facebook as little as possible, and that his children aren’t allowed to use that shit.”|
|iotacons: Pixelated Art by Andy Rash|
|“These days, the children don’t play at break time anymore.”|
|Ubuntu 17.10 Artful "What the Fuck" Aardvark|
|AI and Robotic Arms Remove Trash from Recycling|
|“Millions of Americans are hassled to pay back money they don’t owe.”|
|Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|“The results of its People You May Know algorithm are anything but obvious.”|
|“End your life with a click.”|
|“Google is our modern man's God.”|