Congress Concerned with Tik Tok’s handling of Data

Tik Tok an extremely popular mobile app, which lets users share clips of themselves lip-syncing or dancing to popular music. Recently hitting more than a billion downloads, with millions of those in the US. Congress recently said they were concerned that the Chinese government could force ByteDance to turn over US user data and called the app a “counterintelligence threat we cannot ignore.” ByteDance being Tik Tok’s parent company, based in China.

Congress Expresses: “While the company has stated that TikTok does not operate in China and stores US user data in the US, ByteDance is still required to adhere to the laws of China,” the senators wrote. “Without an independent judiciary to review requests made by the Chinese government for data or other actions, there is no legal mechanism for Chinese companies to appeal if they disagree with a request.”

Tik Tok responded to the statement saying: “all US user data is stored in America with backup redundancy in Singapore.” The senators requested a congressional briefing on the intelligence community’s findings.

TikTok is no stranger to backlash over its handling of data, though that’s centered on the app’s popularity with teens and kids. “In February, TikTok paid $5.7 million to settle US Federal Trade Commission charges that it illegally collected personal information from children. The UK is also now reportedly examining how TikTok handles children’s data and whether it ensures child safety on its platform.” (CNET)

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

Microsoft Awarded $10 Billion Pentagon Contract

The Department of Defense announced late on Friday it was going to award a $10 billion contract to Microsoft. Microsoft was not expected to win. Tech giant Amazon was favored, because of their previous infrastructure efforts for the CIA. However, many believe they were snuffed because of President Trump’s feelings about CEO Jeff Bezos.

The Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud (JEDI) contract set off a heated battle between many of the biggest names in technology. In addition to Amazon and Microsoft, IBM, Oracle, and Google parent Alphabet competed for the deal. After the initial review process, Amazon and Microsoft were picked to move on, as they are the only ones with the necessary cloud infrastructure.

The 10-year contract is part of a Pentagon efforts to modernize the military’s computing infrastructure, much of which is decades old, using computers from the 1980s and 1990s. The technology is highly inadequate in today’s technology driven environment, and the government is spending billions of dollars to update its older infrastructure and systems.

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

5G and It’s Tremendous Speed

Lately, there has been much talk about 5G Technology and what it will bring. Even though, knowledge is widely spread about it, many consumers still haven’t experienced 5G. Massive companies have been silently expanding their 5G Infrastructure and architecture. As with the launch of every next-gen mobile network, the technology is amazing and ground breaking. This is What it Means for you.

Known as 5G, the fifth generation of mobile wireless network promises to lower latency, offer greater stability, the ability to connect many more devices at once, and move more data thanks to faster speeds. Fundamentally, 5G takes advantage of higher-frequency bands in the radio spectrum that have more capacity, than traditional cell towers, but shorter wavelengths. It was estimator by Cisco, that by 2020, 5G will generate 300% more traffic than the average 4G connection.

Industry professionals, say that 5G networks when used with existing 4G LTE networks will be 10 to 20 times faster than 4G. However, 5G by itself, could reach gigabit-plus browsing speeds, making mobile internet as fast, if not faster, than hardwired fiber connections.

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

Google Home Devices Bricked By Software Update

If your Google Home or Google Home Mini Device has recently died unexpectedly, good news: Google will likely replace it.

This year, there has been a wide reports of bricked Google Homes and Home Minis on Google’s support forums (via 9to5Google) and on Reddit (via Android Police), the reports had been steady until mid-September when google received many more reports of bricked Google devices than previously in the year. For months the issue was unclear, and Google finally acknowledged that there was a problem in September.

It seems Google’s had an unexpected discovery. Issuing in a statement that the problem was caused by Automatic firmware updates. If your device has been affected, and is unusable, Google will replace it regardless of it’s warranty status.

The Statement Reads: “We are aware that a small number of Google Home and Google Home Mini devices are affected by an issue that causes the device to stop working. We have a fix that will prevent the issue from happening and will be rolling it out soon. We are replacing affected devices”

It’s Scary to think that our devices can be rendered completely unusable, by something as simple as an update.

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

Facebook Usage Dropping New Study Shows

In a recent survey by Active Inc, users have been spending much less time on Facebook over the last couple years. In fact, Americans typically spent approximately 14 hours a month on Facebook, just 2 years ago. However, this year the average usage was 9 hours per month, declining 26%.

The study also reported that social media users, typically millennials, in the U.S. currently belong to on average 5.8 different social media networks. Not Surprisingly, that number is expected to go up to 10 within the next 4 years. Data has revealed that younger users—between the ages of 12-34, are leaning toward other, more interactive, social media sites.

Platforms such as TikTok, Snapchat and Instagram being the most widely used.

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

Tesla’s New Found Profits

On Wednesday afternoon, A Tesla Spokespeople announced the Company made a profit of $143 million during the third quarter in 2019. Statistics from Q3 2019, through the end of September were taken. They show, The company had $5.3 billion in cash and cash equivalents. As well as, $371 million in operating cash. Surprising analysts in the industry.

For comparison, Tesla recorded an unprecedented loss of $408 Million in Q2 2019. Which, was followed by even heavier losses in Q1 2019. Tesla presented the good news to executives in a conference call today. The company stated that this newfound profitability “was possible by removing substantial cost from our business.” Although recently decreasing price in their cars, to meet consumer needs. Tesla says its automotive gross margin is now 22.8%. That’s higher than it’s been than in all of 2019.

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

Facebook’s Libra Crypto-Currency: In Trouble

Recently, Facebook announced it wanted in on the crypto-currency boom, with an unregulated currency known as Libra. As expected, it received wide criticism from Wall Street and Government Bankers. Many pointing to past incidents with CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Libra is in trouble. Facebook had lined up a long list of corporate backers for the Libra Project. Companies including major players in the banking and finance industries. Several prominent backers began to back out this month. Including big banking and credit card providers VISA and MasterCard.

In a statement, A Facebook spokesperson referred CNBC to a statement from the Libra Association that said. “The Association is eager to pursue its mission of building a better payment network. As well as broadening access to essential financial services, and lowering costs for billions of people who need it the most.”

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

Google’s “Quantum Supremacy”

In a recent paper, Quantum researchers at Google describe how they used a quantum computer to perform, in 200 seconds, a series of calculations that would take the world’s most powerful supercomputer about 10,000 years to replicate, so they claimed. As Cade Metz from the NYT wrote, “this is the first example of what researchers have called “quantum supremacy” — the point where a quantum computer can perform a task that would take traditional computers a very, very long time.”

However, This achievement won’t turn traditional computer hardware on its head anytime soon. The Device is A large array of heavy and expensive lab equipment. Known by the name Sycamore, it is probably rivaled by only one or two similar devices around the globe. In addition to it’s size, The calculations were odd and of little practical application.

Quantum Computers are also fundamentally different from traditional machines. As traditional machines store either a 1 or 0 (Binary). Quantum computers can store both bits. This makes them extremely powerful and appealing to research but; they can not perform traditional computer tasks, only specific functions. Atleast, not yet 😉

As it Seems, we are still years away from such devices doing something practical. (Breaking encryption by Quantum Computer would render all traditional algorithms obsolete)

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube