Did Instagram copy me? After congressional hearing, a startup founder wonders

Elva Mankin

Back in 2014, Andrew Cunningham thought he and some colleagues had a hit with a smartphone app to create short bursts of reversible video.

These days, if Cunningham wants to use his old app, it might be easier to pull up Instagram. The Facebook-owned photo-sharing app has an almost identical feature called Boomerang, which people use to create videos of streams running backward or friends doing backflips in reverse.

Cunningham has long suspected that Instagram copied Boomerang from his startup, which after all was based in Australia, home of the original boomerang hunting tool. His app, called RWND, didn’t last long after Boomerang came on the scene in 2015, a year after RWND.

“You wake up one day and the magic that you’ve got has been baked into another product,” said Cunningham, who’s based in Melbourne.

It was all ancient history in the fast-moving world of tech startups until last

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Every Film, TV Show, and Event Affected by the Outbreak

Elva Mankin

Editor’s Note: The list is constantly updated. Dates refer to when announcements were made. 

The Coronavirus outbreak is disrupting entertainment events in Hollywood and around the world, from the theatrical releases of major studio tentpoles to the launch of film festivals and TV conferences. IndieWire will continue to update this page with the latest breaking news regarding production delays, festival cancellations, release date changes, and more entertainment disruptions caused by the coronavirus. The most recent updates will be posted at the top of the running list below.

ReedPop, the producer of New York Comic Con, announced today that its physical event will not take place, which was slated to occur at the Javits Center. Instead, the event will be broadcast on YouTube as part of a partnership with the site from October 8-11.

The New York Comic Con’s YouTube channel will live stream panels from entertainment brands. This … Read More

How does Game Pass streaming work?

Elva Mankin

Microsoft says major games like Halo will come to the new service on release day
Microsoft says major games like Halo will come to the new service on release day

Microsoft is about to launch a games-streaming service that will let subscribers play top-end Xbox games on a mobile phone.

It is, in essence, a Netflix-style service for video games, which many experts think will be the future of gaming.

But the hefty monthly fee and the fact that it will not work on Apple’s iPhones could be stumbling blocks for the experiment.

How do I try it?

The games-streaming system has been tested for months under the name Project xCloud, but is now being been rolled into the top tier of Microsoft’s subscription games service, Xbox Game Pass.

It is set to be launched on 15 September – but Microsoft told tech site The Verge that a beta test would be launched on 11 August, with about 30 of the promised 100+ games that

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Should students get a discount if they won’t be on campus because of COVID-19?

Elva Mankin

<span class="caption">COVID-19 has caused colleges to spend more to cope with the pandemic. </span> <span class="attribution"><a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="https://www.gettyimages.com/detail/photo/beautiful-young-woman-working-at-home-with-dog-royalty-free-image/1215354586?adppopup=true" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:elenaleonova/GettyImages">elenaleonova/GettyImages</a></span>
COVID-19 has caused colleges to spend more to cope with the pandemic. elenaleonova/GettyImages

Not long after the COVID-19 pandemic caused colleges to start teaching remotely, students balked at the idea of paying full tuition for online learning. It’s not hard to understand why. After all, they were not getting the football and basketball games, student clubs, access to labs and the library and the out-of-class conversations that are all part of the typical campus experience.

Although students who study online will not pay the room, board and activities fees that typically cover nonacademic costs, concern about paying full tuition continues this fall, as many universities opt to continue online instruction in the interest of keeping students, faculty and staff safe from the pandemic.

Is it right to expect to pay less tuition for online learning? Or are colleges justified in charging the full tuition price when classes – at least

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CES 2021 Looks Set to Be All-Online in Wake of COVID-19

Elva Mankin

Anyone interested in product design has likely heard of the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) traditionally held in famous Las Vegas, Nevada. Unfortunately, the event’s organizers have recently announced that the 2021 edition of the show would look much different than in years past. Not just figuratively or literally speaking, but virtually, taking on an all-digital format in the wake of the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

Promotional graphic for the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Promotional graphic for the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Consumer Technology Association (CTA) made the announcement in July 2020, a full six months before the January show. On one hand, that means attendees need not worry about airfare and hotel rooms. On the other hand, it means preparing to observe, disseminate information, and make purchasing decisions entirely online.

Traditionally, the show is set up like any other type of trade exhibition, with rows of booths manned by product specialists ready

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Visualising tech billionaires’ wealth gains during the pandemic

Elva Mankin

Apple boss Tim Cook has joined the billionaire’s club after the coronavirus pandemic helped the technology giant’s share price hit record highs.

His new-found status comes just days after Mark Zuckerberg became the third member of the so-called “Centibillionaire Club” when his personal wealth rose to $100 billion (£76bn).

The Facebook co-founder follows Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates in reaching a 12-figure net worth, with the Amazon and Microsoft founders also seeing their fortunes rise considerably in recent months.

US tech billionaires now occupy seven places in the list of the top 10 wealthiest people in the world.

The wealth of Bezos in particular has shot up at an unprecedented rate, as lockdown orders around the world saw people turn to the online retailer for food and entertainment.

Since the start of the year he has increased his wealth by more than $75bn – more than the entire individual net

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Editorial: The TikTok ownership dance

Elva Mankin

Worries about the TikTok app's data collection could be eased if the Chinese-owned app was sold to Microsoft or another U.S. company. But American companies are ravenous collectors of user data too. <span class="copyright">(Getty Images)</span>
Worries about the TikTok app’s data collection could be eased if the Chinese-owned app was sold to Microsoft or another U.S. company. But American companies are ravenous collectors of user data too. (Getty Images)

Even before President Trump signed an executive order that could soon smother social network TikTok, Microsoft emerged as a potential savior for the U.S.-based but Chinese-owned video snacking service. Now, Twitter and several investment companies are also reportedly talking to TikTok’s owner, ByteDance, about possibly taking over the social network and keeping it going.

That may seem like sweet blessed relief to the network’s estimated 100 million active U.S. users and especially the entrepreneurs who have made a career out of TikTok videos. But while new, non-Chinese ownership would remove some privacy and security concerns, it would also highlight the weaknesses in U.S. law and the ongoing vulnerability of smartphone app users.

Invoking powers granted by

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HCPS Virtual Learning Plan Approved By Harford County Board Of Ed

Elva Mankin

HARFORD COUNTY, MD — The Harford County Board of Education approved the administration’s proposal at its meeting Monday night to hold the fall 2020–2021 semester online.

“Core elements” of the plan are fully virtual instructiond with the option of learning centers for in-person support, Harford County Public Schools Superintendent Sean Bulson said.

His plan was approved, 8-1, and the dissenting vote was cast by Tamera Rush, who represents the northern part of Harford County.

The vote on Bulson’s plan for virtual learning followed hours of school administrators fielding questions about logistics..

While a hybrid model with in-person and virtual instruction had been considered, Bulson said it would not be feasible to educate the over 37,000 Harford County students in that format.

“We were not going to be able to deliver logistically to provide a good instructional program” and deliver on safety, Bulson said.

Coronavirus data in recent months also showed

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How do the dating sites compare in the UK?

Elva Mankin

eharmony vs. EliteSingles: How do the dating sites compare in the UK?
eharmony vs. EliteSingles: How do the dating sites compare in the UK?

Online dating is great, but there’s a slight shudder factor attached to the practice now that everyone and their mother (literally) has some sort of profile.

The biggest advantage, obviously, is the potential to meet thousands of eligible singles who you likely wouldn’t have known existed otherwise. But whether those singles use their profile regularly or are even on it for the right reasons is another question — thus, the terrifying edge that can cause singles genuinely searching for the real thing to shy away from such a valuable tool.

SEE ALSO: Match vs. eharmony: Both are for serious relationships, but how do the dating sites compare in the UK?

When the dating pool is so deep, it’s important to narrow down your options to dating sites that are most likely to attract a very specific type of

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The difference between video game AI and real AI

Elva Mankin

Welcome to TNW’s beginner’s guide to AI. This multi-part feature should provide you with a very basic understanding of what AI is, what it can do, and how it works. The guide contains articles on (in order published) neural networks, computer vision, natural language processing, algorithms, and artificial general intelligence.

Among the most common misconceptions surrounding machine learning technology is the idea that video games dating back to the 1970s and 1980s had built-in “artificial intelligence” capable of interacting with a human user.

If you’re curious but in a hurry, video game “AI,” in the traditional sense, is not what people refer to in the modern era when they’re talking about artificial intelligence. The “bots” in an online multiplayer game, the enemies in a first-person-shooter, and the CPU-controlled characters in old-school Nintendo games are not examples of artificial intelligence, they’re just clever programming tricks.

Artificial

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