Today’s Tech Sightings:
Writer Hossein Derakshan argues social media now represents the ascendance of television over other media. As video and graphic content replace text and hypertext, he says social media is recreating television, albeit with new problems. On social media, he argues, algorithms determine what content to display to maximum emotional effect. The outcome, he says, “is a proliferation of emotions, a radicalization of those emotions, and a fragmented society. This is way more dangerous for the idea of democracy founded on the notion of informed participation.”
In many African countries, people who use wheelchairs find it hard to maneuver in the absence of ramps or friendly terrain. But SafariSeat wants to change that with an all-terrain open source wheelchair. The wheelchair, which so far has been overfunded on Kickstarter, is designed for developing countries and can be assembled locally with bicycle parts. The crowdfunding campaign will fund as many chairs as the company is able to build and an open source manual to allow communities to build their own wheelchairs.
Hack attacks have become bolder and more sophisticated in recent years. And 2016 has seen some of the biggest on record. ZDNet looks at some of 2016’s biggest and most dangerous attacks and leaks that compromised the personal information of millions of people.
- UK Bill Requiring Firms to Store Web Histories Becomes Law
- Hackers Have Broken Into a European Bank and Are Blackmailing Customers
- The Internet Archive Is Building a Replica Database in Canada in Response to Concerns Over Trump
- Facebook’s Plans for WhatsApp Stumble Over EU Privacy Concerns
- Mirai Botnet Attack Hits Thousands of Home Routers, Throwing Users Offline
- Survey: Chinese Firms Hit by Huge Increase in Cyberattacks
- Samsung Electronics Is Heading for a Split
- MIT’s New AI: So Smart It Can Predict What Happens Next From a Still Image
- The Subtle Ways Your Digital Assistant Might Manipulate You