Techmeme
November 7, 2019, 2:10 PM

Top News

Wall Street Journal:
Sources: Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund invested $400M in Travis Kalanick's CloudKitchens in January, valuing the “ghost kitchen” operator at about $5B  —  The sovereign-wealth fund—also an early investor in Uber—poured $400 million into CloudKitchens in January
CNET:
If its Sprint merger goes through, T-Mobile says it will offer free 5G to first responders for a decade and free broadband to 10M households with children  —  Scoop: It says these incentives, including free home broadband to 10 million low-income families, won't come without the merger.
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
James Vincent / The Verge:
OpenAI releases the full version of GPT-2 text generation AI, which it previously said was too dangerous to share, after finding “no strong evidence of misuse”  —  The lab say it's seen ‘no strong evidence of misuse so far’  —  The research lab OpenAI has released the full version …
Washington Post:
DOJ charges two ex-Twitter employees, arresting one, with spying for Saudi Arabia by snooping on kingdom critics; one allegedly accessed 6,000 accounts in 2015  —  The Justice Department has charged two former Twitter employees with spying for Saudi Arabia in a case that raises concerns …
Nico Grant / Bloomberg:
Photoshop for iPad has met with a lackluster reception and a review rating of 2.3 out of 5 stars, prompting Adobe exec to defend this first version  —  Adobe Inc. debuted its most important mobile application ever this week when it finally released Photoshop for Apple Inc.'s iPad.
Taylor Lorenz / New York Times:
An investigation into I'm Shmacked, which exploited thousands of students by inducing them to provide viral videos of college parties to earn Instagram fame  —  The chief executive of I'm Shmacked promises students Instagram fame, then silences them with threats.
Emily Glazer / Wall Street Journal:
Sources: Google has been holding internal meetings on changing its political ad policy, and plans to share more information with employees soon  —  Discussions come after Twitter said it would bar most political ads amid spread of misinformation  —  Alphabet Inc. GOOG -.02% 's Google …
Mark Gurman / Bloomberg:
Apple's weather app stopped showing air quality index data for Chinese cities, source says due to Weather Channel changing how it collects that data in China  —  When it comes to many of Apple Inc.'s latest services, iPhone users in China are missing out.  Podcast choices are paltry.
Jay Peters / The Verge:
Google says it is open sourcing the phone-based VR software of Cardboard, less than a month after the company discontinued its Daydream View VR headset  —  Maybe the last nail in the coffin for phone-based VR  —  In October, Google officially discontinued its Daydream View VR headset …
The Correspondent:
Skeptics say the effectiveness of online advertising is overhyped since ad marketers optimize ever more for people who would have bought anyway  —  Mel Karmazin, the president of Viacom, one of the largest media conglomerates in the world, walked into the Google offices in Mountain View, California.
Wall Street Journal:
Court documents: Mark Zuckerberg and other executives repeatedly called messaging apps a threat to Facebook, in the months before acquiring WhatsApp  —  Internal emails could serve as fodder for regulators studying social network's business practices  —  In the months before acquiring WhatsApp in 2014 …
Tweets: @robinwauters
Reuters:
Reuters:
Adrian Kingsley-Hughes / ZDNet:
AMD unveils two new Ryzen Threadripper CPUs in 24-core and 32-core versions, built using its 7nm “Zen 2” architecture, available Nov. 19 for $1,399 and $1,999  —  Need CPU power?  AMD has you covered with new 24-core and 32-core AMD Ryzen Threadripper processors.
Kyle Wiggers / VentureBeat:
Ghost Locomotion emerges from stealth with $63.7M and says its self-driving kit will work with some cars made from 2012 onwards when it launches in 2020  —  Self-driving cars have countless obstacles to contend with on the road, chiefly drivers who don't always act predictably — or responsibly.
More: Yahoo FinanceTweets: @rabois
Alex Krivit / The Cloudflare Blog:
An inside account of Cloudflare's defeat of Blackbird's lawsuit by publishing “prior art” that could help others, and attacking the patent troll business model  —  Remember 2016?  Pokemon Go was all the rage, we lost Prince, and there were surprising election results in both the UK and US.
VICE:
Sources: the CEO and CSO of Alphabet's Chronicle, which is to be merged with Google, have left, with the CTO leaving soon as the cybersecurity startup implodes  —  Chronicle, Google's moonshot cybersecurity startup that was supposed to completely change the industry, is imploding.

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