Internet Use/New Technologies

15 August 2014

Browsing speeds may slow as net hardware bug bites BBC News

Browsing speeds could slow over the next week as old hardware is upgraded to handle the net's growth, says networking giant Cisco.

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Internet infrastructure 'needs updating or more blackouts will happen' The Guardian

Experts have warned of more internet blackouts after a crash disabled eBay in northern Europe this week, as the decades old systems used to organise the world wide web creak under the sheer weight of new devices and websites.

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07 August 2014

Britons spend more time on tech than asleep, study suggests BBC News

Britons spend more time using technology devices than they do sleeping, according to new research.

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From Syria to Ukraine, social media opens up warfare Reuters

In 2013, Eliot Higgins used videos posted online from Syria to track weapons and pinpoint a chemical strike in Damascus from a computer in the English Midlands.

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06 August 2014

Pope Francis says the internet, smartphones and TV 'distract attention away from what is really important' The Independent

Following the wild success of his top 10 tips for a happy life, Pope Francis has turned his attention to children who spend too much time on the internet "distracted from what is really important".

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300bn messages sent in UK forecast this year largely due to mobile flirting The Guardian

WhatsApp has spawned a new generation of instant messaging superusers, with some teenagers and young adults using their smartphones to despatch up to 100,000 electronic messages a year, according to a study by Deloitte.

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30 July 2014

OKCupid experiments with 'bad' dating matches BBC News

Dating website OKCupid has revealed that it experimented on its users, including putting the "wrong" people together to see if they would connect.

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Australians embracing the internet - but as a supplement to TV The Guardian

The internet will soon take over from TV as Australia's favourite entertainment source as the country reaches the "digital tipping point".

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27 July 2014

Twitch: what is it, and why has Google bought it for $1bn? The Guardian

Google has reportedly closed a $1bn deal to acquire gaming video streaming site Twitch.

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22 July 2014

Social media has to stop banning women's bodies Salon

The Internet has sent several pretty clear messages to women in recent months about what place their bodies have online: none, whatsoever. Not nipples, not bellies, not even the names of body parts unseen -- it doesn't matter. Don't post it, because it's inappropriate.

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Smartphones Surpass Computers for Internet Use in China New York Times

For the first time, more Chinese people are gaining access to the Internet with mobile phones than with personal computers.

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21 July 2014

Shakira becomes most liked celebrity on Facebook The Guardian

Shakira has become the first person to attract more than 100 million fans on Facebook, becoming the most "liked" celebrity on the social network in the process.

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Study: Kids on screen-time diet lost weight, performed better in school Salon

Parents are in a much more powerful position than they realize. A new study of over 1300 3rd to 5th graders found that parental monitoring of children's media has ripple effects that extend across several different areas of children's lives out into the future. For this study, my colleagues and I talked to children, their parents, their teachers, and even their school nurses, once at the beginning and once at the end of a school year. e asked parents whether they set limits on the amount of screen time their children were allowed to have each day, and also on the content of media their children were allowed access to. As one might expect, setting limits on the amount and content of children's media is generally effective at reducing time on TV and video games and at reducing violent media exposure.

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16 July 2014

Around $80 billion wasted on power for online devices in 2013 International Energy Agency

Today, the world's 14 billion online electronic devices - such as set-top boxes, modems, printers and game consoles - waste around USD 80 billion each year because of inefficient technology. By 2020, the problem will considerably worsen, with an estimated USD 120 billion wasted. But a report by the International Energy Agency points to a different path, identifying simple measures that can be implemented now to improve energy efficiency in networked devices, resulting in massive savings of energy and money.

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15 July 2014

Most people use Snapchat for cat photos and selfies, not sexting Salon

Snapchat seems like the perfect medium for sending sexy photos. The images self-destruct within seconds of being opened (except for when they don't), and users are automatically alerted when a recipient decides to take a screenshot (though there are loopholes to notification). That might be why Snapchat has gotten a reputation for being the sexting capital of the smartphone universe -- but, according to a new study, the app doesn't have quite the population of sexting users you might expect. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Snapchat is yet another hub for selfies and pictures of people's cats.

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14 July 2014

Is the internet making us stupid? New Zealand Herald

Reading online could be making us dumber, a University of Victoria study has found.

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11 July 2014

Irish Data Privacy Watchdog To Probe Facebook's Research Methods Wall Street Journal

Facebook's psychological experiment on users' emotions could cause more headaches for the social networking giant.

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10 July 2014

American adults without landlines are more likely to be smokers and heavy drinkers Washington Post

New results released Tuesday by the Centers for Disease Control reveal that two of every five American households have ditched their landlines for cellphones -- and there are interesting differences between the health of households that still have landlines and those that are wireless-only.

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Bell Labs celebrates net speed record over copper lines BBC News

A team of researchers has announced it has transmitted data over traditional copper telephone lines at a record speed of 10 gigabits per second (Gbps).

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09 July 2014

Digital exclusion is a modern social evil we can abolish The Guardian

It's easy to forget that 9.5 million people - nearly 20% of the UK population - lack the basic online skills needed to send and receive email, use a search engine, browse the internet and complete online forms. The latest research shows that nearly three-quarters of adults who lack these basic online skills are vulnerable people, who are poor, have disabilities or are older.

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British social media users warned against falsely calling politicians paedophiles The Guardian

Internet users need to be careful about falsely labelling politicians as paedophiles amid a frenzy of rumours on social media about alleged child abusers in Westminster, legal experts have warned.

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08 July 2014

Google's founders on the future of health, transport – and robots The Guardian

When Google's founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, sat down for a rare frank and open chat with the veteran technology venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, they admitted, among other things, that Google is interested in healthcare but scared of its intense regulation.

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06 July 2014

An Online Shift in China Muffles an Open Forum New York Times

For the past few years, social media in China has been dominated by the Twitter-like Sina Weibo, a microblogging service that created an online sphere of freewheeling public debate, incubating social change and at times even holding politicians accountable in a country where traditional media outlets are severely constrained.

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Don't hide your dark side from Google. Much better to tell The Observer

It has been a distressing and troubling period for those of us who struggle to maintain a meaningful relationship with social media and internet technology. The revelation that Facebook had undertaken a grotesque experiment in mind-bending and emotional manipulation by altering the news feeds of around 700,000 of its users in 2012 has been greeted with some outrage.

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04 July 2014

US Privacy Group Complains to F.T.C. About Facebook Emotion Study New York Times

A leading privacy group filed a formal complaint on Thursday with the Federal Trade Commission over a 2012 study in which Facebook manipulated the news feeds of nearly 700,000 users of the social network to see what effect the changes would have on their emotions.

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