Techmeme
February 6, 2020, 4:40 AM

Top News

Juli Clover / MacRumors:
Apple adds universal purchases for iOS and macOS apps to the Xcode 11.4 beta, letting developers bundle apps  —  The new Xcode 11.4 beta update, released today alongside the iOS 13.4, tvOS 13.4 and macOS Catalina 10.15.4 betas, includes support for universal purchases …
Filipe Espósito / 9to5Mac:
Apple releases the first iOS 13.4 beta, which includes a “CarKey” API, making it possible to unlock, lock, and start a car with an iPhone or Watch  —  Apple today released the first beta version of iOS 13.4 for developers, and now 9to5Mac has found evidences to a new feature …
Nicholas Thompson / Wired:
LinkedIn says CEO Jeff Weiner is stepping down in June after 11 years in the role, becoming executive chairman, to be replaced by SVP of Product Ryan Roslansky  —  After 11 steady years as the CEO of the professional networking company, Weiner is yielding the reins to deputy Ryan Roslansky.
Mary Jo Foley / ZDNet:
Microsoft reorganizes its Windows software and hardware teams into one group, called Devices + Windows and led by Panos Panay, amid other reshuffling  —  It's reorg day in Microsoft's Experiences and Devices unit.  Here's what's happening, including what's happening with Windows client and Surface.
Abner Li / 9to5Google:
Google says Chrome's ad blocker will expand to target disruptive video ads in August, including long pre-roll ads, mid-roll ads, and overlays ads on video  —  Last year, Google made Chrome's standards-backed ad blocker fully available around the world.  The Better Ads Standards today announced a …
Natasha Lomas / TechCrunch:
Brave browser report: 198 local UK councils' websites are using real-time bidding advertising, which is the subject of a number of data protection complaints  —  On the same day that a data ethics advisor to the UK government has urged action to regulate online targeting a study conducted …
Kyle Wiggers / VentureBeat:
Amazon launches Brand Voice, a fully managed service within Amazon Polly for letting brands work with Amazon's engineers to build custom text-to-speech voices  —  If Amazon has its way, companies will soon tap Amazon Web Services (AWS) en masse to create voices tailored to their brands.
Christina Farr / CNBC:
After layoffs at 23andMe, Ancestry says it is laying off 6%, citing slowdown across entire DNA testing category, now that most of early adopters have enrolled  —  - Ancestry, following 23andMe, made the decision to lay off some employees.  It confirmed to CNBC that the cuts affected 6% of its workforce.
CNET:
YouTube and Facebook send cease-and-desist letters to Clearview AI over photo scraping after a similar move by Twitter in January  —  In an interview with CBS This Morning, Clearview AI's founder says it's his right to collect photos for the facial recognition app.
Jeff John Roberts / Fortune:
Lightning Labs, which wants to speed up bitcoin transactions, raises $10M Series A led by Craft Ventures and rolls out its first enterprise product  —  Elizabeth Stark stands out in the digital currency world.  The 30-something entrepreneur is at ease among crypto's tribal subcultures …
Sean Hollister / The Verge:
Researchers discover a now patched vulnerability in Philips Hue smart light bulbs that could have let hackers infiltrate users' home or corporate networks  —  Might want to check if you've got firmware 1935144040  —  Four years ago, security researchers showed how a flying drone could hack …
Tom Foremski / ZDNet:
Although Google disclosed many financial metrics for the first time in Q4, it removed cost-per-click, which has steadily declined, and the number of paid clicks  —  Google makes less money per click every quarter.  Now, we won't know how much less.  Is there trouble ahead in online advertising?
Peter Kafka / Vox:
Spotify will buy The Ringer, the podcast-centric media company run and owned by Bill Simmons, and plans to hire Simmons and his approximately 90 employees  —  It's the fourth podcast deal Spotify has done in a year.  —  Spotify is making yet another big-budget purchase aimed at getting …
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
The Guardian:
Dutch court rules that a surveillance system used to detect welfare fraud violates human rights; called SyRI, it used a secret algorithm to run risk modeling  —  Government told to halt use of AI to detect fraud in decision hailed by privacy campaigners  —  A Dutch court has ordered …
Robert Heaton:
Software engineer finds that Wacom drawing tablets track the name of every application opened on a user's computer and send the data to Google Analytics  —  Chapter 1: The discovery  —  I have a Wacom drawing tablet.  I use it to draw cover illustrations for my blog posts, such as this one:
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft says it resolved an issue that caused Windows 10 Search, which is powered by Bing, to return blank results for several hours  —  Microsoft's Bing search was misbehaving in Windows 10  —  Microsoft's built-in Windows search went down for many users for more than three hours today.
Linda Kinstler / protocol:
An in-depth look at the role of ethicists within tech companies, spurred by scandals like Cambridge Analytica, and their somewhat limited power to effect change  —  Firms are adding ethical thinking to their processes, but ethical outcomes are optional.  —  Fifty-two floors below the top …

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Earlier Picks

Cameron Faulkner / The Verge:
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:
Charlie Warzel / New York Times: