Tech Sightings, May 15, 2014

Posted May 15th, 2014 at 2:00 pm (UTC+0)
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Amid protests, FCC to Vote on New ‘Net Neutrality’ Proposal

Thursday’s vote determines if U.S. telecommunications regulators will formally propose “net neutrality” rules that may allow Internet service providers to charge content companies for faster and more reliable traffic on their networks. Critics say the new rules would create fast lanes for paying companies and slower traffic for others.

Curbing Online Abuse Isn’t Impossible. Here’s Where to Start

Online harassment is ubiquitous, particularly for women. A 2013 Pew Research survey showed that 23 percent of people ages 18-29 reported being stalked or harassed online. But there are ways to combat and reduce this problem.

A Bill of Rights for Our Future, Implant-Enhanced Brains

Drawn up by Jamais Cascio of The Institute for the Future, the five points of the Magna Cortica may bring Issac Asimov’s science fiction lore to mind, but they also lay the foundation for where we might set the bar in the rapidly growing field of cognitive enhancement.

Anti-Muslim Website Denied Trademark

A U.S. federal appeals court has upheld a decision denying a trademark to a website’s banner because it could be perceived as disparaging to Muslims. But the motion against the banner, “Stop Islamization of America,” also has raised concerns about constitutional rights.

Hyperlocal Apps Help Residents Fight Crime

After a wave of burgleries, residents of Grandview neighborhood, northeast of Phoenix, Arizona,  created Nextdoor.com, a private social network for urban neighborhoods that offers crowdsourced details of the crimes, and allows residents to send out alerts about any suspicious activity within their respective neighborhoods.

Flappy Bird to Return to Smartphones in August, Creator Announces

The creator of the hit Flappy Bird, Dong Nguyen, told CNBC he is bringing back the addicting game, possibly in August.The game was pulled from mobile app marketplaces in February because its creator said it was so addictive.

Aida Akl
Aida Akl is a journalist working on VOA's English Webdesk. She has written on a wide range of topics, although her more recent contributions have focused on technology. She has covered both domestic and international events since the mid-1980s as a VOA reporter and international broadcaster.

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Whether you are in a big city or a small village – technology is in your hands, your pocket, your car, your home. It is everywhere. And everywhere, it is becoming us.

Techtonics looks at how technology intersects people’s lives, how it empowers them or traps them in a world increasingly obsessed with technological wonders even as privacy slips through its fingers. It aims to inform, discuss, and hopefully inspire.

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