Tag Archives: Technology

Facebook now lets you order food without leaving Facebook

Today Facebook is announcing that users can now order food for takeout or delivery using both the Facebook mobile app and website. But it’s not at all what you might think; Facebook hasn’t created its own answer to Seamless, which would be massive news for the restaurant industry. This isn’t that.

Instead, the company is partnering with existing services GrubHub, Delivery.com, DoorDash, ChowNow, Zuppler, EatStreet, Slice, and Olo, and will now link out to those food ordering businesses for restaurants that support them. You head to the new “Order Food” area of Facebook under the Explore section, find the local spot you’re craving, and then hit “start order.” From there, if a restaurant supports more than one of Facebook’s ordering partners, you’ll be able to choose between them. Once you do, Facebook will bring up an in-app browser that takes you through the existing websites for Delivery.com and the others. That’s where all the ordering actually happens, so you’re not actually doing much with the Facebook app beyond finding a restaurant and tapping your preferred delivery option.

Seamless is not currently among Facebook’s partner services, but parent company GrubHub is, so that should get you most of the same delivery restaurants. But there are other omissions such as Caviar, so you’ll still need to open those apps separately to know which restaurants use them and place an order.

 

Facebook is also partnering on food ordering directly with national chains Chipotle, Five Guys, Jack in the Box, Papa John’s, Wingstop, Panera, TGI Friday’s, Denny’s, El Pollo Loco, and Jimmy John’s. But it works the same way as with the other services; you browse to one of these nearby chain locations, pick start order, and then you’ll be sent to their existing delivery system. All Facebook is really doing here is launching an in-app browser so you can get a meal without ever leaving the app.

“We’ve been testing this since last year, and after responding to feedback and adding more partners, we’re rolling out everywhere in the US on iOS, Android and desktop,” Alex Himel, Facebook’s VP of local, said in a press release. “People already go to Facebook to browse restaurants and decide where to eat or where to order food, so we’re making that easier.”

Source:

https://www.theverge.com/2017/10/13/16468610/facebook-food-ordering-new-feature

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How Vulnerable Is Your Job to Automation?

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Training and education may not be enough to robot-proof your job, a recent report dealing with the impact of automation and offshoring on job loss shows.

The 10 jobs most vulnerable to automation include mathematical science occupations and insurance underwriters, according to a Ball State University study. A college degree is usually required for these occupations, both of which have median annual salaries of more than $65,000.

Many of the other top 10 jobs most vulnerable to automation pay less and don’t require the same level of education.

However, all on the list have something in common, according to “How Vulnerable are American Communities to Automation, Trade and Urbanization?”

“The study found that low risk of automation is associated with much higher wages, averaging about $80,000 a year,” states a news release on the report. “Occupations with the highest risk of automation have incomes of less than $40,000 annually.”

Only one of the jobs least at risk of automation — occupational therapist — paid about $80,000 a year, according to the updated report released last week, but published in June.

Like most of the other robot-proof jobs, occupational therapist is a “high touch” occupation, or one in which direct interaction with clients and/or colleagues is routinely required. Most of the least vulnerable jobs are in health care and related fields.

The study looked at communities throughout the United States that are most at risk of job loss due to automation. No Ohio counties made the top 25 list. Ranking first was the Aleutians East Borough, Alaska followed by Quitman County, Georgia and Aleutians West Census Area, Alaska.

“Automation is likely to replace half of all low-skilled jobs,” said Michael Hicks, director of Ball State’s Center for Business and Economic Research, in the release. “Communities where people have lower levels of educational attainment and lower incomes are the most vulnerable to automation. Considerable labor market turbulence is likely in the coming generation.”

The report also looked at jobs most at risk of being off-shored. Several of them had median annual salaries in the $80,000 range or higher. They included: computer programmers ($79,530), computer and information research scientists ($80,110), actuaries ($97,070), mathematicians ($111,110) and statisticians ($110,620).

One in four of all U.S. jobs will be at risk of being lost to foreign competition in the coming years, the report says.

The report incorporates research on automation and offshoring published in recent years, as well as an analysis of government and other data.

TOP 10 JOBS MOST VULNERABLE TO AUTOMATION

1. Data entry keyers. Annual median wage is $29,460

2. Mathematical science occupations, $66,210

3. Telemarketers, $23,530

4. Insurance underwriters, $65,040

5. Mathematical technicians, $46,600

6. Hand sewers, $23,640

7. Tax preparers, $36,450

8. Photographic process workers and processing machine operators, $26,590

9. Library technicians, $32,310

10. Watch repairers, $34,750

TOP 10 JOBS LEAST VULNERABLE TO AUTOMATION

1. Recreational therapists. Annual median wage is $45,890

2. Emergency management directors, $67,330

3. First-line supervisors of mechanics, installers, and repairers, $63,010

4. Mental health and substance abuse social workers, $42,170

5. Audiologists, $74,890

6. Healthcare social workers, $52,380

7. Occupational therapists, $80,150

8. Orthotists and prosthetists, $64,430

9. Health technologists and technicians, $41,260

10. Hearing aid specialists, $49,600

Source:

http://www.govtech.com/workforce/How-Vulnerable-is-Your-Job-to-Automation.html

Facebook can unlock your account with facial recognition

Facebook has its own version of Apple’s Face ID. If you get locked out of your Facebook account, the company is testing a way to regain access by using your face to verify your identity. That could be especially useful if you’re somewhere that you can’t receive two-factor authentication SMS, like on a plane or while traveling abroad, or if you lose access to your email account.

Social media researcher Devesh Logendran (a pseudonym) sent a screenshot of the feature to TNW’s Matt Navarra. We asked Facebook about it and got this confirmation:

“We are testing a new feature for people who want to quickly and easily verify account ownership during the account recovery process. This optional feature is available only on devices you’ve already used to log in. It is another step, alongside two-factor authentication via SMS, that were taking to make sure account owners can confirm their identity.”

If the feature proves reliably helpful to users and isn’t fooled by hackers, Facebook could potentially roll it out to more people.

 

Over the years Facebook has tried a number of novel ways to help you get back into a locked account. In some cases it asks you to identify photos of your friends to prove you’re you. Or it’s tried allowing you to designate several “trusted friends” who receive a code that you can ask them for to unlock your account.

While Facebook has experienced some backlash to facial recognition for photo tag suggestions in the past, this feature would only use the technology to privately help you out. Therefore it shouldn’t engender as big of privacy concerns, though obviously anything related to biometric data can give people pause. But if it means you can get back to your messages and News Feed, or repair damage done by a hacker, many people are likely to be comfortable to use their face to Facebook.

Source:

Facebook can unlock your account with facial recognition

This Simple Change on the Apple iPhone Could Save Countless Lives on the Road

There’s nothing quite like “borrowing” an idea from someone else in the tech world. It’s all about how you implement the idea, how you make sure the idea is still general enough that it is not outright theft, and then how your user base reacts to the change.

That’s what makes a new feature on the iPhone, called Do Not Disturb While Driving, so interesting. It’s something Android users have enjoyed (or been annoyed by) for a while. On the iPhone, it means your phone is basically locked. When you use the mode and pick up your phone, you’ll see a screen that says your phone is disabled.

When you get a message or receive a phone call, the iPhone can then send a message back that you’re driving. To enable the feature on any iPhone that runs iOS 11, just head to Settings and enable the Do Not Disturb While Driving feature. You can set it to activate automatically when the iPhone senses you are driving or manually when you decide to use it. (A chip inside the phone can sense movement that could only be a car.)

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Over the last week, I’ve use the feature many times. Well, to be more specific–I’ve stopped after driving to sit idle in a parking lot or the curb and picked up my phone, only to realize that it was impossible for me to check for a text or glance at my iTunes playlist.

You can go through a few settings to disable it of course, but it’s really a reminder to stay safe, remain vigilant, and keep your attention on the road. And here’s the amazing part. It worked. I refrained from glancing at the phone, even though it was safe to do so, and I decided to just wait until I was out of the vehicle entirely.

We know distracted driving is an issue, because accidents and fatalities on the road have risen slightly in the last year or two. It’s a problem because your brain goes into a strange blackout mode where all you see is the screen and nothing else–no pedestrians, no other cars, no roadside objects. It’s a good thing the brain does this, because it allows us to focus. It’s a bad thing when you are driving 70 miles-per-hour in heavy traffic.

For Android users, the feature has been available since last year at least. I recall using it with a Google Pixel phone connected using Android Auto to several makes and models, including a nice sports sedan with a lot of horsepower. The feature also blocks messages and calls. There’s no way to prove Apple noticed this feature and added it, but the Pixel essentially does the same thing–sensing the car is moving and blocking calls.

You can use a custom message on the Phone to send back to people to let them know you are driving, and you can select whether all calls are blocked or just those not in your contacts or favorites. Anyone can use a trigger word (“urgent”) to contact you even if you are Do Not Disturb mode.

Source:

https://www.inc.com/john-brandon/this-simple-change-on-apple-iphone-could-save-countless-lives-on-road.html

Lyft requests will light up phones for deaf drivers

Back in April, Lyft launched features that made its system easier to use by deaf drivers and those who are hard of hearing. Now, it’s adding a couple more to celebrate National Deaf Awareness Month. Thanks to its partnership with the National Association of the Deaf, the ride-hailing firm has developed “flash-on request” for drivers.

 

If they’ve activated the app’s hard-of-hearing accessibility function, they’ll get a powerful visual notification whenever a ride request comes in: their phone’s screen and flashlight will both light up. When combined with the Amp emblem flashing the words “New Ride,” it could lower the chances of a driver missing out on a request.

 

In addition, Lyft is also making an attempt to breach the language barrier between drivers and passengers. It’s beefing up the automated text it sends out notifying passengers that their drivers are deaf or hard of hearing with a link to a tutorial on how to say “Hello” and “Thank you” in American Sign Language. The company didn’t say when the features will be available exactly, but it promises to roll them out soon.

Source:

https://www.engadget.com/2017/09/18/lyft-flash-on-request-deaf-awareness-month/

Putin says the country that perfects AI will be ‘ruler of the world’

Forget the arms race or space race — the new battle for technological dominance revolves around AI, according to Vladimir Putin. The Russian President told students at a career guidance forum that the “future belongs to artificial intelligence,” and whoever is first to dominate this category will be the “ruler of the world.” In other words, Russia fully intends to be a front runner in the AI space. It won’t necessarily hog its technology, though.

 

Putin maintains that he doesn’t want to see anyone “monopolize” the field, and that Russia would share its knowledge with the “entire world” in the same way it shares its nuclear tech. We’d take this claim with a grain of salt (we wouldn’t be surprised if Russia held security-related AI secrets close to the vest), but this does suggest that the country might share some of what it learns.

Not that this reassuring long-term AI skeptic Elon Musk. The entrepreneur believes that the national-level competition to lead AI will be the “most likely cause of WW3.” And it won’t even necessarily be the fault of overzealous leaders. Musk speculates that an AI could launch a preemptive strike if it decides that attacking first is the “most probable path to victory.” Hyperbolic? Maybe (you wouldn’t be the first to make that claim). It assumes that countries will put AI in charge of high-level decision making, Skynet-style, and that they might be willing to go to war over algorithms. Still, Putin’s remarks suggest that his concern has at least some grounding in reality — national pride is clearly at stake.

Source:

https://www.engadget.com/2017/09/04/putin-says-ai-leader-will-rule-the-world

Facebook will soon purge video clickbait from the News Feed

Facebook has announced two new updates that will limit video clickbait posts from appearing in the News Feed. The posts being targeted are those that have fake video play buttons embedded into an image, and videos of a static image.

Facebook’s algorithm actively promotes videos, especially longer ones. Spammers have exploited this to trick users into clicking links to low-quality websites and those with malicious ads. Users started noticing static images disguised as videos a little while ago where some pages were gaming Facebook’s algorithm by just uploading static memes as 10-second videos.

“Publishers that rely on these intentionally deceptive practices should expect the distribution of those clickbait stories to markedly decrease,” Facebook engineers Baraa Hamodi, Zahir Bokhari, and Yun Zhang, wrote in a blog post. “Most Pages won’t see significant changes to their distribution in News Feed.”

The demotion of video clickbait posts will roll out over the next few weeks. In May, the company rolled out more tweaks to the News Feed to limit clickbait posts.

Facebook has been taking a more aggressive approach to moderating content on its platform since the US election, after the social networking site was criticized for not doing enough to combat fake news proliferating on its platform.

Source:

https://www.theverge.com/2017/8/17/16160638/facebook-targeting-video-clickbait-spam

Mastering Apps: A Beginner’s Guide To Start Making Money With Apps

Communication technologies are constantly advancing to keep up with the times. Messaging apps are huge right now. Completely overtaking social media by becoming the primary way we communicate online.

When most entrepreneurs are starting out, they like to read articles on “how to make a killing with your first app,” “building the multi-billion dollar app” and most books related to this topic. They are glued to this side of the story and blinded to the other. To have your own success story you have to find out why other apps fail. The painful truth is there are more failed apps than successful ones.

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