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Earlier this month, Reddit users accused Unilever male deodorant brand AXE of "stealing" their content to use in its recently-launched ad campaign without giving them due credit.

Now the agency behind the ads has spoken.

At the center of the issue was the first video in AXE's "Shower Thoughts" series, produced by the brand's agencies Defy Media and Mindshare Entertainment.

The ad, posted on YouTube in March, saw a man ponder in the shower: "When you're criticized for being short, they're really just saying the worst thing about you is that there isn't more of you."

Screen Shot 2016 04 11 at 11.36.09 AMRedditSound familiar?

However, in August last year, Reddit user "JaSfields" posted the exact same wording into the /r/Showerthoughts subreddit. The identical phrase in the ad sparked a new Reddit thread: "'AXE is jacking our shower thoughts and not giving credit. Literally word for word."

On Friday, a spokesman for Defy Media sent Business Insider this statement:

Our intent with the Shower Thoughts series is to highlight the great creativity and conversations already happening in pop culture. As a champion for creative thought and self-expression, AXE will collaborate on an upcoming piece of content with the person who posted the Shower Thought being referenced.

Unilever has not yet commented on the matter.

As we wrote last week, it's difficult for any Reddit user to say they they really "own" their Shower Thought idea — some Reddit users even said they certain they'd seen the "short" meme before. And as with all social media, Reddit itself is often a place where jokes and ideas are endlessly recycled.

The "Shower Thoughts" video has now been viewed more than 800,00 times on YouTube — but it has been plagued with more than 18,000 downvotes, likely from angry Reddit users, judging by the comments.

Original author: Lara O'Reilly
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junk food snacks chips processedShutterstockTasty. But not too healthy.

Here's a neat feature hiding in Google you might not know about: You can use the search engine to help you eat healthily.

Ask Google how many calories, or fat, or salt, is in a given foodstuff, and it'll automatically calculate it for you.

Queries can be asked in natural English, and you can ask about pretty much any nutrient: "How much protein is there in 89g of chicken?" for example will yield you the answer — 24g — as well drop downs to further specify what you mean. Are you talking about chicken breast or stewed chicken drumsticks? McDonald’s Bacon Ranch Salad with Grilled Chicken, Popeyes Bonafine Chicken, or plain old chicken gizard?

The options are (nearly) endless.

butter google caloriesBITurns out butter is pretty fatty. Who knew?

It's the sort of thing that could come in useful if you're trying to watch your weight or plan meals while on the go. You can also search for specific meals if you're eating out. 

google calories chow meinBIMmmmmm.

It's pretty handy, but Google may have some far more ambitious weight-watching plans on the horizon. Back in June 2015, it showed off an AI-powered app called lm2Calories.

The app (which isn't to the public) aims to tell you exactly how many calories are in a meal — just by looking at a photo of it.

Original author: Rob Price
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Mark Tluszcz portait_April16Mangrove Capital PartnersMark Tluszcz is the CEO and cofounder of Mangrove Capital Partners.For a country with a population of just 8 million people, Israel certainly packs a punch when it comes to creating world-class technology companies — several of which have been acquired by Apple, Google, Facebook, and other US tech giants for hundreds of millions.

Mark Tluszcz, a man that claims to be the first investor in Skype, told Business Insider in London why Israel is now referred to as the "Startup Nation."

"You have an entrepreneur culture that’s extremely present in Israel," said Tluszcz, who is CEO of Mangrove Capital Partners, a venture capital firm that has raised $650 million (£459 million) to invest in early-stage technology companies.

Tluszcz also thinks the compulsory national service that Israeli citizens go through is another contributing factor. The normal length of compulsory service in the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) is three years for men and around half that for women. "They all go through the military where they learn a lot of skills," said Tluszcz. "When they're there, they interact with a lot of great technology people. So there's a force in function to get tech people together."

Tluszcz also said the most intelligent people in Israel tend to go to one of three top-tier universities so the smartest entrepreneurs all get to know each other as they study.

The investor, whose VC firm made $200 million (£140 million) from a $2 million (£1.4 million) early investment into Skype, claimed there is a "very vibrant financing community" for startups in Israel, who can now access Silicon Valley investors more easily thanks to a new direct flight between Tel Aviv, the main tech hub in Israel, and San Francisco, in California.

Tluszcz has backed a number of Israeli companies, including web development platform Wix, which became Israel's largest tech IPO when it listed on New York's Nasdaq market at $650 million (£465 million) in 2013.

Google, Apple, and Facebook have all set up engineering operations in Israel in a bid to hire technically talented Israelis that aren't interested in running their own startup.

The US tech giants have also acquired a number of Israeli startups. Navigation service Waze, for example, was acquired by Google for $996 million (£693 million) in 2013, while Facebook bought, an Israeli company with face recognition technology, for $100 million (£69 million) in 2012.

Original author: Sam Shead
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Canterbury Stained glass window n3Flickr/Jules & JennyBarnett says cash will seem 'as antediluvian as carrying a pouch full of gold.'Mark Barnett, the boss of MasterCard in the UK and Ireland, believes that in five years time cash will be practically extinct in Britain and Ireland — and in 30 years it will seem as old fashioned as the horse and cart.

Barnett told Business Insider at the Money2020 conference in Copenhagen last week: "By the time we get to another generation, 30 years down the track, will there be any cash? I very much doubt it. The idea of carrying coins — 2p, 1p, 50p all cluttering up your pocket — it will be an anachronism. It will seem as antediluvian as carrying a pouch full of gold."

'In five years time the vast majority of the cash will be out of the system'

Of course, MasterCard would say that. The more people use plastic to pay for things, the more business MasterCard gets.

But Barnett points to statistics that show it's not just idle fighting talk — Britain is already well on its way to ditching cash. Electronic payments overtook cash payments by volume in 2014 in the UK for the first time.

Barnett says: "We're quite ahead of the rest of the world, because if you take the world as a whole it's still 85% cash. I think in five years time there'll be practically none. There will be some, there might always be some. But in terms of the number of transactions, in five years time the vast majority of the cash will be out of the system."

Britain and Ireland are not alone either. Sweden has made so much progress toward turning itself into a cashless society that it now has 27% less hard cash in circulation today than it did in 2011; Denmark wants to allow shops, including restaurants, gas stations, and clothing stores, to stop taking cash; and the Bank of Korea has said it's aiming for a cashless society by 2020.

Barnett says: "We [MasterCard] think a world beyond cash is a good thing. Wherever you find high levels of cash — I'm not saying there's a causal relationship — but you get high levels of poverty, you get high levels of crime, difficulty in doing business, high levels of corruption, low levels of tax collection. I think in the end it's a good thing, a world beyond cash."

Apple Pay has 'shaken up the industry'

Why are we seeing a tipping point now? Plastic has been around for decades after all. Barnett says: "It's changing now faster than it ever has before [due to] big external factors — the first is technology. Let me talk about two of those technologies.

"One of the them is contactless, NFC [near field communication technology]. That's been around for 7 or 8 years but it was really only when we got TfL [Transport for London] so you could start using your credit or debit card on the tube, that it really took off.

"We see that now spreading out. People get on this tube, then they buy their coffee, then they buy their lunch, then they buy a drink and so on. That grew five times in a year — 500%. What it's doing is ripping cash out of the system very rapidly."

"That's also enabled another disruptor, probably the biggest disruptor in the technology sector in history and that's Apple," says Barnett. "The numbers aren't huge with Apple Pay but they're not nothing. We're seeing hundreds of thousands of transactions a month. That's shaken up the industry. Suddenly Android have announced they're coming, Samsung have made some announcements, all with NFC-type solutions on your phone."

How much more convenient is it really to get your phone out of your pocket than to get your card and tap? Apple and other smartwatch makers have found it tough to sell consumers on the big convenience leap of getting texts on your watch instead of phone. Couldn't they face the same problem of small benefits in the payments space?

"If you're competing on just the payment experience, the difference is marginal," Barnett admits. "But a card is just a card and a phone has all sorts of other things we can do with it like loyalty.

"Everybody is trying to find what you bundle in around the payment to make it relevant. For example, if every time you use your phone to pay, you've already pre-loaded all your loyalty programmes, they automatically get populated every time, you can redeem in real-time."

'It's going on to your phone'

MasterCard selfie payMasterCard/FlickrMasterCard's selfie pay technology in action.Right now, this is something of a pipe dream rather than a reality. As Barnett admits, Apple Pay is far from mainstream yet.

He says: "I think loyalty is going to be the thing that makes people move to the phone. But it could be other stuff. People really, really like real-time transaction notifications. When you do consumer research everybody says, no I don't want that, it will clutter up my phone. But when you actually do it, they love it. It just shows you, chuck out your research."

MasterCard itself is experimenting with new phone-based innovations to try and win people over, for example an app that lets you pay a restaurant bill on your phone and cut out the hassle of waiting for the bill. Or selfie pay, technology that allows facial recognition for authenticating purchases or even a NFC-enabled ring that can you pay with.

Barnett concludes: "I think if there's one thing we can say about where payments are going, it's going on to your phone. In a few years times, most of your transactions will go through your phone. There'll always be a card in the background and there'll always be a little bit of cash. But it's all going to the phone and there's a race to see which solution can capture the most [customers]."

Original author: Oscar Williams-Grut
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golfball1GettyApple is facing opposition for a new €850 million (£677 million) data centre on the west coast of Ireland from a golf club that dates back to 1902.

Athenry Golf Club appealed Galway County Council's decision to let Apple construct a new data centre on a plot of land approximately one kilometre from its course, according to documents available through the council's website. The golf club wrote its appeal on October 5 2015.

Apple filed a planning application to build a 263,000 square foot data centre hall in the middle of Derrydonnell Forest next to the golf course last April. Apple only sought planning permission for one data centre hall but it envisions building up to eight in a phased approach taking at least 15 years to complete. Apple would have to reapply for planning permission each time it wants to build a new data hall.

Martin Hynes, chairperson of Athenry Golf Club, and John O'Beirn, treasurer of Athenry Golf Club, write in their appeal: "Our primary concern is the totality of the proposed development, especially the extent of the proposed masterplan, and the potential this has to alter the hydrology of the local area and potentially increase the frequency and duration of flooding already experienced at the golf club."

The golf club paid €220 (£175) to file the appeal with An Bord Pleanála — an independent planning group that decides on appeals from planning decisions made by local authorities in Ireland.

apple data centreAppleA computer generated image of the data centre halls.

Hynes and O'Beirn also stated that if the data centre build does go ahead, then they would rather construction work is "curtailed on Saturdays as this is our busiest day on the course." They added: "We would also request that due consideration is provided for in the planning consent conditions to facilitate certain key competitions."

Apple wants to use the data centre — which would be situated in the middle of Derrydonnell Forest near a small town called Athenry, in County Galway — to store European user data and to help power online services including the iTunes Store, the App Store, iMessage, Maps, and Siri for customers across Europe, according to a press release.

On the issue of flooding, Apple's "Environmental Impact Statement" states:

A Flood Risk Assessment was undertaken by Arup and is appended to the EIS. The assessment determined that the risk of fluvial flooding of the site is considered to be very low, as there are no watercourses on the site or in close proximity to the site. The site is located in Flood Zone C i.e. outside the 1 in 1000 year fluvial flood extent. Therefore, a Justification Test for the proposed development is not required.

There is a low risk of groundwater and pluvial flooding of the proposed data centre development. Notwithstanding this, it is proposed to install measures to mitigate this risk. The measures will consist of a comprehensive drainage network, designed to the 1 in 100 year storm standard. The drainage network will consist of filter drains and surface water drains that will convey surface water to infiltration swales around the site allowing percolation back into the natural groundwater system.

In an extreme pluvial event, any overland flow from the development is likely to flow south-westwards and dissipate and naturally infiltrate through soil strata at the south western area of the site. Therefore, the potential off-site impacts of the development are considered to be very low.

The lands to the south of the site are noted as “Lands liable to flooding’ on old Ordnance Survey maps. The proposed development will not worsen the already existing situation. By careful consideration and adoption of the proposed flood mitigation measures, the risks relating to flooding for this proposed development are considered to be low and at acceptable levels, and therefore comply with Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government/Office of Public Works and Galway County Council guidelines.

County Galway Council granted Apple planning permission for a single data hall last September, despite receiving complaints from 20-25 parties. Complainants argued that the data centre would increase noise and light pollution, flooding, and traffic. Some also said it would act as an eyesore and others said it would harm the local badger and bat populations.

Apple skitch 2Apple Maps/SkitchAn annotated map showing the golf course and the proposed data centre.Apple IrelandBusiness Insider/Sam SheadA hole that borders the forest Apple wants to build a data centre in.

A letter of appeal from Athenry Golf ClubCounty Galway Council

Several follow up appeals, including that of the golf club, were then made to An Bord Pleanála. An An Bord Pleanála committee of 10-12 experts (including architects, environmentalists, and planners) is currently looking over the complaints and is due to issue a response in May at the earliest. It was initially due to pass a decision in February but it said it had not received enough information from Apple to make a decision.

Apple was initially hoping the data centre would begin operations at some point in 2017 but the setbacks suggest a later start date may be on the cards.

Some 5,500 of Apple's 18,300 European staff are based in Ireland, which is also home to its European headquarters. The company plans to hire an additional 1,000 staff in Ireland before 2017.

Letter to planning board Apple data centreCounty Galway Council

Google, Microsoft, and Amazon have built data centres in Ireland, while Facebook also has one planned. Many of those companies have based their European headquarters in the country, which offers a lower corporation tax rate than other European nations.

Elsewhere in Europe, Apple is planning to build a data centre in Denmark on the same scale as the one in Ireland. The company does not reveal where all of its data centres are but reports suggest Apple also has data centre facilities in Newark, Santa Clara, and Cupertino on the west coast of the US, as well one in Maiden on the east coast.

Apple declined to comment.

Original author: Sam Shead
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Google looks to secure bluetooth beacon communicationsGoogle looks to secure bluetooth beacon communications

This story was delivered to BI Intelligence IoT Industry Insider subscribers. To learn more and subscribe, please click here.

Privacy remains the biggest barrier to beacon adoption, as consumers don't always feel comfortable sharing their location with others.

Those privacy concerns are compounded by the fact that Bluetooth communications are susceptible to remote monitoring by hackers: a recent study found that hackers could use Bluetooth fitness trackers to remotely track a user's location.

Google is trying to ease that privacy concern by offering a new software platform for securing Bluetooth communications from beacons, according to WIRED.

Beacons that are registered to the new Ephemeral ID (EID) platform transmit communications using a dynamic ID that constantly changes, instead of using a static ID that hackers could steal to track the communications indefinitely. Only users who have access to the platform know the new ID marker when it changes.

Google is open sourcing the code for EID on GitHub. It's also adding it to its Eddystone beacon platform that it introduced last year. The use of EID can create new use cases for beacons by making them more secure and private. 

For example, Samsonite is planning to build beacons with the EID technology into a new suitcase it plans to release later this year. The beacon will allow the user to track their suitcase throughout their journey and only the user will have the password to communicate with that beacon.

Since Google is open sourcing the technology, other beacon providers could add the Eddystone EID technology to their beacons via firmware updates. However, there are competing standards — like Apple's iBeacon — that have been in the market longer. Google is hoping that providing extra security will help its standard gain more traction as beacons become more commonplace.

Hacks of IoT devices, such as beacons and cars, help draw media attention to the dangers involved with vulnerable IoT devices, but they don't illustrate all the ways that hackers can use these vulnerabilities in the real world. Hackers could potentially crash a compromised car, but they are more likely to exploit IoT devices to gain entry to corporate and government networks and databases.

Jonathan Camhi of BI Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, has compiled a detailed report on IoT Security that examines how vulnerable IoT devices will create new opportunities for different types of hackers. It also forecasts the market for solutions that can help secure IoT devices, and explains how different security measures can be used to protect these devices against hackers.

cybersecurity market annual forecast  1BI Intelligence

Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:

Research has repeatedly shown that many IoT device manufacturers and service providers are failing to implement common security measures in their products. Hackers could exploit these new devices to conduct data breaches, corporate or government espionage, and damage critical infrastructure like electrical grids. Investment in securing IoT devices will increase five-fold over the next five years as adoption of these devices picks up. Traditional IT security practices like network monitoring and segmentation will become even more critical as businesses and governments deploy IoT devices.

In full, the report:

Explains why IoT devices often lack basic security measures like properly encrypting communications. Forecasts the market for solutions that help secure IoT devices against attacks. Examines how different types of hackers could exploit IoT devices for financial gain, media attention, or to further a geopolitical cause. Explains how organizations can secure IoT devices at both the device and network level.

To get your copy of this invaluable guide, choose one of these options:

Subscribe to an ALL-ACCESS Membership with BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report AND over 100 other expertly researched deep-dive reports, subscriptions to all of our daily newsletters, and much more. >> START A MEMBERSHIP Purchase the report and download it immediately from our research store. >> BUY THE REPORT

The choice is yours. But however you decide to acquire this report, you’ve given yourself a powerful advantage in your understanding of IoT security.

Original author: BI Intelligence
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Robert Plant and Jimmy Page of Led ZeppelinGetty Images NewsRobert Plant and Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin.Two members of the British rock band Led Zeppelin will go to court in Los Angeles on May 10 over a copyright dispute regarding the song "Stairway to Heaven."

The case against Led Zeppelin comes from a trustee for the estate of a member of the American rock band Spirit, which released a song named "Taurus" in 1968.

Michael Skidmore, representing the estate of Spirit member Randy Wolfe, says Led Zeppelin copied the introduction of "Taurus" and transformed that into the opening section of "Stairway to Heaven."

Led Zeppelin denies the claim and asked a Los Angeles judge to issue a summary judgment on the case, but it was granted only in part. That means the case will go to court.

One member of Led Zeppelin is already off the hook

John Paul Jones, Led Zeppelin's bass and keyboard player, is no longer a defendant in the trial. The Los Angeles judge granted Led Zeppelin's request for a summary judgment in regards to dismissing the suit against Jones and also against Warner Music.

There have been some pretty wild claims

Skidmore accused Led Zeppelin of "falsification of Rock n' Roll history." That's a pretty big claim, but it's also difficult to prove legally. A Friday decision by the Los Angeles judge says the "plaintiff presents an inventive — yet legally baseless — claim ... The court has diligently searched but is unable to locate any cognizable claim to support this theory of liability."

It's only about a specific part of both songs

Skidmore's lawsuit specifically accuses Led Zeppelin of copying the introduction to "Taurus." Both sides of the case called expert witnesses to examine the musical structure of the songs. It all boils down to two letters: A and B. "Taurus" starts with an "AABAAB" structure, while "Stairway to Heaven" has an "AABAABAA" structure.

To persuade the judge to grant him damages, Skidmore had to demonstrate there was a "striking similarity" between "Taurus" and "Stairway to Heaven." The Los Angeles judge decided the songs were not close enough to rule on but were similar enough that it should go to trial.

If you wanted to compare the two tracks yourself, you can listen to them below. First up is "Taurus" from 1968; next is "Stairway to Heaven" from 1971:

It all comes down to whether Led Zeppelin had 'access' to the song it's accused of copying

Skidmore didn't manage to prove that there was a striking similarity, so now he has to show the jury that Led Zeppelin knew about "Taurus" and heard it before it wrote "Stairway to Heaven" in 1971. Led Zeppelin and Spirit shared festival bills three times from 1968 to 1970, and Skidmore says Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant socialised with the band after a Spirit show.

Led Zeppelin denies that it heard "Taurus" before 1971. Guitarist Jimmy Page said in a deposition that the nature of music festivals means that the time spent preparing for shows and moving equipment means he never heard Spirit perform. Plant says he couldn't have gone to the pub with Spirit — as one band member says — because the pubs in England closed before the shows they played ended, according to the deposition.

Funnily enough, Page recently discovered that he owned a copy of Spirit's debut album. But he says he owns "several thousand albums" and, "like a book collector," doesn't listen to them all.

The Los Angeles judge didn't find Skidmore's evidence about access convincing. On April 8, he wrote: "the Court finds that Plaintiff has not proffered sufficient evidence to raise a triable issue of fact that Led Zeppelin members had direct access to Taurus."

The court does acknowledge, however, that there is "a factual dispute" on the issue of whether Led Zeppelin heard "Taurus," so that will go to trial on May 10.

The man whose estate is suing Led Zeppelin once said Led Zeppelin could have the beginning of Taurus 'without a lawsuit'

Wolfe gave an interview in 1991 when he was asked about the similarity between "Taurus" and "Stairway to Heaven." According to court documents, Wolfe said members of Led Zeppelin "used to come up and sit in the front row of all [Spirit's] shows and became friends[,] and if they wanted to use [Taurus], that's fine," and also "I'll let [Led Zeppelin] have the beginning of Taurus for their song without a lawsuit."

But Wolfe's estate claims that he actually he did want to sue Led Zeppelin, and an entertainment lawyer named Linda Mensch claims that he visited her in the 1990s asking about how a lawsuit against Led Zeppelin would work, according to court documents. The Los Angeles court decided that Wolfe's 1991 statement didn't constitute abandoning his right to copyright over the song "Taurus."

You can read the judge's full order that sent the case to trial here:

Original author: James Cook
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Mobile app development gains steam in the enterpriseMobile app development gains steam in the enterprise

This story was delivered to BI Intelligence Mobile Industry Insider subscribers. To learn more and subscribe, please click here.

Budget allocations for mobile apps solutions for the enterprise are continuing to grow alongside the use of mobile devices in the workplace, according to a global study conducted by Enterprise Mobility Exchange.

The survey, which included responses from mobile tech investment decision markers and direct influencers, found that 60% of businesses invested in mobile app development over the past 12-18 months. 

Security and mobile connectivity were the next two most invested-in mobility solutions in the past 12-18 months. Around 45% of companies noted investing in each of these solutions. As more businesses make the shift to mobile, it will become increasingly important that they ensure that sensitive data for both employees and the business alike are secure. Investment in mobile device management (44%) and mobile devices consumer (36%) rounded out the top five mobility solutions most invested in.

Investment in mobility solutions is expected to continue to grow through 2016. However, businesses have been slow to allocate more of their budgets to mobile technology. This is likely due to the fact that it is difficult, expensive, and time consuming to integrate legacy systems with newer mobility solutions. It can also be hard to convince senior decision makers to embrace the changes mobility introduces to an organization.

But the increased investment in mobility solutions is promising amid growing concern that demand for mobile app development services is happening much faster than organizations are able to deliver them. Businesses are finding it challenging and costly to develop, deploy, and maintain mobile apps as rapidly as demand dictates, according to Gartner. 

One way that businesses can aim to overcome these issues is by turning to mobile enabler companies to increase the efficiency of their app platforms. Mobile enablers (like Salesforce and IBM) offer solutions to streamline mobile app platforms provided by developers for the enterprise.

Every subscriber to the BI Intelligence Mobile Industry Insider newsletter received this story first thing in the morning, along with other insightful and informative content. To learn more and subscribe, please click here.

Original author: BI Intelligence
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European UnionWikimedia Commons

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The European Parliament passed a new data protection law on Thursday that may be the most significant overhaul of the continent’s data rules in two decades. 

The new regulations, which will affect all EU member states beginning this summer, are aimed at giving individuals greater protection and control over their digital information.

Officials expressed hope that the reforms would help unify Europe's disparate data protection rules within a broader Digital Single Market. At the moment, most of the rules governing data and digital content are still controlled by individual member states. 

However, the new Global Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will impact the business of many digital companies that rely on the collection of users' data. In addition, companies found breaching the new law could face fines of up to 4% of their global turnover.

The new regulations will make the following three major changes to the way companies collect and use individual's personal data in Europe:

Improved personal digital security: Companies will be required to appoint a data protection officer to ensure internal compliance with the regulations if they process sensitive data at scale. They will also be obligated to inform national authorities and customers of data breaches within 72 hours. Companies must also be able to demonstrate that they have taken steps to protect user data in any product they offer. Greater control over who can collect data: Companies will also be beholden to Europe’s “right to be forgotten ruling” — a concept in practice in the EU since 2006 that requires data collectors to remove data that is “inaccurate, inadequate, irrelevant or no longer relevant.” The inclusion of this rule will have an outsized impact on companies like Google, which rely on collecting and storing user data. Google's efforts to publicly push back against the policy reform have failed. Ease of portability for data: Companies must also disclose more precisely how they are using customers' data and create tools that enable "data portability" so individuals can move their information more easily from one service provider to another.

Every subscriber to the BI Intelligence Mobile Industry Insider newsletter received this story first thing in the morning, along with other insightful and informative content. To learn more and subscribe, please click here.

Original author: BI Intelligence
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Tesla Model S Number 9Sam PerryA view of Tesla Model S No. 9, a Signature edition set to be auctioned off in April.

Sam Perry is a Tesla believer.

He was one of the first 100 people to buy a Tesla Roadster, the electric-car company's inaugural production vehicle.

Now, he's just put his Tesla Model S — the ninth one ever built — up for auction.

The trailing digits of the sedan's vehicle-identification number say it all: 00009. It's the 2012 Model S Signature series, which means that it's loaded and dressed in the now iconic Signature Red paint.

"Elon [Musk] personally inspected these first cars to make sure the fit was exactly right," Perry told Business Insider in a phone conversation last week. "So it's one of the few hand-finished cars, and among the first to come off the assembly line."

The Silicon Valley investor, who runs Ascendance Ventures in the San Francisco Bay Area, says that he's selling his car now to make room for another Tesla: the falcon-winged Model X SUV. Perry said that he needed the extra space to haul a bunch of bicycles and other equipment "while still being able carry passengers."

We asked Perry why he wouldn't just park the new Model X next to the S, considering that the latter is so rare. He simply replied, "I don't need two large cars."

The electric-car bug has been running in Perry's family for generations. He boasted of a 1917 Detroit Electric car owned by his extended family.

"An uncle of mine updated it so it can run on 12-volt batteries," he said, "but you wouldn't want to try driving it up a hill."

Of course, the Model S that Perry is selling is no slouch.

He applauded Tesla's role in kicking electric-vehicle development into high gear, even though EVs haven't yet won unanimous appreciation from consumers.

Tesla Model S Number 9Sam Perry

Total sales of new plug-in cars barely made a dent among the 17.5 million new cars and trucks sold in the US last year.

Tesla first-adopters — people like Perry who signed up to buy the earliest editions of the company's cars — are true believers in transport innovation.

Perry is also selling an ICON A5 personal aircraft — No. 23 of only 100 to be made.

His Tesla Model S Signature series is listed on eBay, with bids starting at $9,000.

Original author: Bryan Logan
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Original author: Paul Szoldra
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sundar pichaiAdnan Abidi/ReutersSundar Pichai.

After a six-hour session, executives from Google and Oracle were unable to settle an ongoing copyright lawsuit between the two companies, according to new court documents.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Oracle CEO Safra Catz, along with other executives from both companies, met on Friday to try to settle the suit, which Oracle filed in 2012.

Last month, Google said that its damages expert strongly disagreed that it should owe Oracle upward of $8 billion for using certain parts of Oracle's software in its smartphone operating system, Android.

Because an agreement couldn't be made, the next phase of the case will head to court in May, where a jury will decide if Google had the right to use certain parts of Oracle's programming language, Java, for free or if it owes Oracle damages.

This is the second time the two companies tried and failed to reach a settlement.

"After an earlier run at settling this case failed, the court observed that some cases just need to be tried," the court docket reads. "This case apparently needs to be tried twice. However unsuccessful, the court appreciates the parties' settlement efforts earlier today — especially those of Ms. Catz and Mr. Pichai."

Original author: Jillian D'Onfro
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e skinSomeya LaboratoryThe prototype e-skin projects blood oxygen level.What if instead of wearing a watch, you had a light-up sensor thinner than your skin, taped to your hand, that would constantly tell you the time, temperature, and your vital signs?

You could simply glance down at your other hand to read your incoming messages.

It's a crazy futuristic idea, but researchers at the University of Tokyo are working to design such devices today.

They've developed thin-film electronic sensors that they call "e-skin."

The e-skin gets laminated onto your hand with clear, ultra-thin tape, where they showed it can project numbers and letters in different colors, and even measure your pulse and blood oxygen levels.

Oxygen saturation, also known as SpO2, can also be measured with some smartphones today. (A low blood oxygen level can mean you might have something wrong with your breathing or circulation.)

The researchers described the e-skin in an April 15 paper in the journal Science Advances.

They designed the e-skin in part because our smartphones are too bulky, one of the researchers, Takao Someya, said in a press release.

"What would the world be like if we had displays that could adhere to our bodies and even show our emotions or level of stress or unease?" Someya wondered. "In addition to not having to carry a device with us at all times, they might enhance the way we interact with those around us or add a whole new dimension to how we communicate."

Of course, this technology is a long way from getting out of the lab and onto your hands. It also raises a lot of questions that the researchers haven't answered in this study, like whether the laminated tape lets the skin breathe and if it's durable, comfortable, and safe.

Do we need to be constantly monitoring our pulse or blood oxygen levels? Is there any harm from taping electronics to our skin? Is this really better than a smartwatch (which itself is perhaps not better than a smartphone) — or is it just weirder? As with anything new and experimental, the researchers have a lot of work to do.

Who knows whether e-skin could actually ever replace your phone. But it's a cool concept nonetheless — and shows just how quickly we're becoming capable of creating technology we once could only imagine.

Read the original article on Tech Insider. Follow Tech Insider on Facebook and Twitter. Copyright 2016.

Original author: Rebecca Harrington
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Jack Dorsey Square IPOREUTERS/Lucas JacksonJack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey waved off any salary or stock awards last year when he returned to take the top spot at the company he founded.

The only compensation the 39-year-old received from Twitter last year: $68,506 for "residential security and protective detail," according to the company's annual proxy filing.

Dorsey owns 3.4% of Twitter, which is worth roughly $419 million at Friday's closing price of $17.58 per share. Dorsey announced in October that he was giving one-third of his stock back to company employees.

According to Friday's proxy filing, Twitter CFO Anthony Noto, who received a $72.7 million total compensation package when he was hired in 2014, got roughly $150,000 in relocation expenses in 2015. The former Wall Street banker relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area to work for Twitter.

Noto's base salary, which was $124,000 in 2014, got bumped up to $250,000 last year. Twitter's stock, by contrast, declined 35% in 2015.

One other interesting nugget in the filing: Former CEO Dick Costolo and former head of product Kevin Weil received "personal car service" compensation of $41,209 and $69,962, respectively.

That's a lot of Uber rides.

Original author: Alexei Oreskovic
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amazon shipping boxesAP Photo/Ben Margot

Amazon has explored buying an airport in western Germany, according to a German media report, a move that could further build out the retail giant's plan of operating its own fleet of delivery airplanes.

Amazon has held talks with Frankfurt-Hahn Airport, a money-losing airport that is for sale, according to the German-language daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung, which was picked up by logistics-industry website Lloyd's Loading List.

The report did not say what the discussions were about or how recently they occurred, but it noted that three acquisition offers from unnamed parties have already been made and that a contract was expected to be signed soon.

An airport in Germany could provide Amazon with an important hub from which it could boost its service across Europe. And it would mark the latest step in Amazon's efforts to build a full-fledged logistics and freight-transportation service that some industry observers speculate could eventually compete with third-party shippers like FedEx and UPS.

Last month, Amazon signed a deal to lease 20 Boeing 767 wide-body freighter aircraft that will help it ensure capacity to fulfill its promise of one- and two-day deliveries in the US. And a Bloomberg report in February revealed internal Amazon documents that described a plan in which "Sellers will no longer book with DHL, UPS, or FedEx but will book directly with Amazon."

In response to all the speculation, Amazon's CFO told investors during its most recent earnings conference call that the company's plan is to supplement existing shippers, not to replace them, with its in-house delivery network.

Amazon did not immediately return a request for comment.

Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.

Original author: Alexei Oreskovic
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F8 Mark ZuckerbergBusiness InsiderFacebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Despite some not-so-subtle political jabs from CEO Mark Zuckerberg about Donald Trump, Facebook won't use its power to try to sway the upcoming US presidential election — even if some employees within the company wonder whether it should.

Each week Facebook holds an internal Q&A for employees with Zuckerberg, and the topics are determined by the results of an internal survey. Gizmodo got hold of the questions submitted for the weekly Q&A in early March, one of which was: "What responsibility does Facebook have to help prevent President Trump in 2017."

We don't know what Facebook or Zuckerberg said in response to the question during the Q&A.

But when reached for comment about the question, a Facebook representative told Business Insider:

Voting is a core value of democracy and we believe that supporting civic participation is an important contribution we can make to the community. We encourage any and all candidates, groups, and voters to use our platform to share their views on the election and debate the issues. We as a company are neutral — we have not and will not use our products in a way that attempts to influence how people vote.

Facebook's response is an acknowledgement of just how powerful the social network's Timeline has become. And it's worth noting that the company has gotten in trouble for manipulating what appears in its users' news feeds in the past.

As part of an experiment in 2012, data scientists at Facebook deleted all of the positive or negative comments from over 600,000 people's feeds for an entire week in order to see how it affected their moods. Facebook later apologized for the psychological experiment, noting that things should have been "done differently."

Original author: Brandt Ranj
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Investor T. Rowe Price just marked down its holdings in a bunch of hot tech startups, another indication that last year's sky-high billion-dollar valuations for startups are falling back to earth.

The mutual-fund manager took an ax to Dropbox in particular, valuing the company at $7.91 a share, reports Alfred Lee at The Information.

That's a 59% cut from what investors paid for a round in 2014, which valued the privately held company at $10 billion. But it's even lower than what they paid back in 2011 ($9.05 a share), Lee reports.

T. Rowe also marked down:

Cloudera by 37%, MongoDB by 23%, Lookout by 16%, Flipkart by 15%, Apptio by 15%, Houzz by 12%, Warby Parker by 11%, and others.

Uber, the $62 billion ride-hailing startup, and home-sharing service Airbnb both got a 6% valuation haircut.

And T. Rowe took a heavy ax to its common stock Series 1 investment in Evernote, cutting that by 75%, although it did not mark down the value of its later rounds in Evernote, Lee notes.

The markdown to Evernote is interesting.

In many cases, the terms investors were offering startups in rounds that gave them such high billion-dollar valuations included extra protections for the investors and their preferred stock if it looked like they could lose money in future fund-raising or cash-out events, like an IPO. In other words, there may be less reason to write-down certain preferred stock, since the risk of losing money is much lower.

Mutual funds are very opaque about the methodology that they use to value private startups, and recently there have been some arguments that the significance of the markdowns has been overstated.

Indeed, other mutual-fund investors have rated their investments in these same startups differently.

For instance, look at the variations from 4Q 2013 to 1Q 2016, according to the Startup Stock Tracker by The Wall Street Journal:

Dropbox: Collectively up 17.31% by all the mutual funds tracked, with the lowest price in that period again from T. Rowe Price at $9.40. Cloudera: up 54% (although Fidelity recently marked down Cloudera, too), with the lowest price at $19.50 from Hartford and Principal. MongoDB: down 32.83%, lowest price from Fidelity at $5.75. Lookout: down 9%, lowest price from Hartford $8.35. Flipkart: up 6.22%, lowest price $100.99 from Principal. Evernote: down 36%, from T. Row Price's last markdown in December to $7.66.
Original author: Julie Bort
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nick woodman goproAndrew Burton/GettyNEW YORK, NY - JUNE 26: Nick Woodman, founder and CEO of GoPro speaks during the company's initial public offering (IPO) at the Nasdaq Stock Exchange on June 26, 2014 in New York City. GoPro's small, cheap video cameras, which can be mounted to capture unique points of view and record in high definition, have seen a surge in use for capturing everything from extreme sports to personal moments. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Good morning, here's the technology news you need to know this Thursday morning.

1. Hackers reportedly helped the FBI crack into a San Bernardino shooter's iPhone. Advice from the hackers reportedly led to the creation of a piece of hardware that got past the iPhone's four-digit passcode.

2. GoPro's stock rocketed up 19% after it poached a top Apple designer. The company hired Danny Coster to be its vice president of design.

3. US regulators want to bar Elizabeth Holmes from Theranos for two years. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said it plans to revoke Theranos' California lab's license.

4. Donald Trump's team fired back at Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Zuckerberg criticized Trump in a speech on Tuesday.

5. Journalist Matthew Keys was sentenced to two years in prison under a "broken" computer hacking law. Keys was convicted of helping members of the Anonymous hacking collective gain access to the computer systems of Tribune Media.

6. Google apologized for a cloud outage that one person describes as a "comedy of errors." It went down for 18 minutes.

7. Facebook poached a key Google executive who used to work for DARPA. At Facebook, Regina Dugan will lead a new skunkworks group called Building 8.

8. Here are some big, beautiful photos of Amazon’s new Kindle, which comes with a cover that charges the device. Amazon unveiled the Kindle Oasis yesterday.

9. Nest CEO Tony Fadell just sort of apologized to Googlers: "Nest isn’t perfect, and I’m not perfect." Fadell gave a pep talk at Google's all hands internal company meeting.

10. Car startup Cruise wants to stop an alleged cofounder from blowing its $1 billion (£700 million) sale to GM. In private negotiations, Cruise's CEO Kyle Vogt offered to pay money to settle it privately.

Original author: James Cook
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beach selfieDaniel Munoz/Stringer/Getty ImagesMillennials are desperate for comments on their vacation photos.Expedia, the online travel company, has compiled data on the key lessons marketers can learn about how millennials travel.

It compared millennials (defined as people born between 1982 and 1999) to generation x (1961-1981) and baby-boomers (1945-1960.)

Some of the findings do not reflect very well on youthful travelers.

Millennial backpackers are getting less adventurous and more vain.

Almost half (43%) of millennials said that whether people comment on their vacation photos is as important or more important than experiencing the authentic culture of the destination. This compares with just 16% of baby-boomers.

Headshot Gary MorrisonExpediaGary Morrison, SVP and head of retail at Expedia.While 43% of millennials are intimidated by the prospect of solo travel, just 32% of baby-boomers say they feel the same.

Expedia compiled the report with the help of the Future Foundation — a global consumer trends and forecasting consultancy. A sample of 1,000 consumers per country aged between 18 – 64 in the UK, Germany, France, USA, China, Australia, Brazil and South Korea answered the questionnaire in March of this year.

We spoke to Gary Morrison, senior vice president and head of retail at Expedia, who explained what the results of the report mean for marketers trying to reach millennials.

Millennials are afraid to take risks:

Expedia millennialsExpedia

Solo-travel has forever been the ultimate travel experience. Without friends, partners, or family to hold you back, you are able to more fully-immerse yourself in a foreign culture. But we're doing it a lot less, according to Expedia's research. Does this mean we are getting less adventurous?

Morrison explained: "I think it’s not that we’re getting less adventurous but a sense of risk aversion is growing. The sense that 'I need to know that it’s going to be authentic, I need to know that people are going to look favorably on it.'"

He added: "A lot of people enjoy travel as an experience of discovery. It's really the not knowing, the exploration, the finding on the fly [that for them makes traveling enjoyable,] but this particular cohort [millennials] seem to be different. It seems to be wanting to be as informed as possible before they go the destination."

Morrison said that this is why Expedia is investing in virtual reality (VR.) In this way, consumers are able to experience the destination before they travel and they can make the ultimate informed decision. Here's one way Expedia is using VR:

The Expedia VP dismissed the idea that VR may one day replace travel altogether: "People will always want to have the experience. The sensation of warm sun on my flesh cannot be replicated by virtual reality."

Millennials are much happier to give away data in return for convenience:

Millennial travel trendsExpedia

Morrison explained that millennials look for help in overcoming "choice paralysis" when looking at where to go on vacation. This means they are willing to give up personal data in return for "relevant" and "accurate" advice.

Carmen, a millennial respondent to the Expedia study from the UK, said: "I am interested in personalized travel ... however what they are offering needs to be so unique and not doable from my own research into the country...”

Many Millennials are more interested in curating a positive online image than in having an "authentic" experience:


Social media is obviously very important to millennials, so much so that it is greatly influencing are vacation choices.

Morrison talked about the importance of being a part of every conversation online.

"We are starting to invest in content creation, getting travel journalists to write informative, authoritative, fresh, relevant articles from different locations around the world. The more we are able to do that, the more they trust the content," Morrison said.MillennialExpedia

Out of the findings in the report Morrison was most surprised by was "the degree to which my choice of where I want to go and what I want to do is informed by how other people will rate it."

But he said travel companies are adapting as millennials become more fearful of the unknown, and more concerned with their online image.

Original author: Will Heilpern
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Bolivia droughtReuters/Carlos Garcia RawlinsTrees and water marks are seen on previously submerged land at Guri dam in Bolivar state, Venezuela April 11, 2016.

Good morning! Here's what you need to know on Thursday.

1. Panama's public prosecutor against organised crime said there was no evidence so far to take action against the law firm at the center of the Panama Papers scandal, following a raid lasting 27 hours on its offices.

2. ISIS released the latest edition of its English-language propaganda magazine this week. The online publication provides some clues about the backgrounds of the terrorists who attacked Belgium last month.

3. The company that helped the FBI unlock a San Bernardino shooter's iPhone to get data has sole legal ownership of the method, making it highly unlikely the technique will be disclosed by the government to Apple.

4. The Bataclan concert hall in Paris where 90 people were killed during last year's terror attacks on the French capital is to reopen with a series of concerts in November, its managers said Wednesday.

5. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's campaign manager, who was charged in Florida last month with battery on a reporter, will not be prosecuted, Politico reported on Wednesday.

6. North Korea has deployed one or two intermediate range ballistic missiles on its east coast, possibly preparing for launch around April 15, the birthday of the country's founder, South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported.

7. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has officially said that the Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and other birth defects. The confirmation was published Wednesday in a report in the New England Journal of Medicine.

8. Oil prices were pulled down in early trading on Thursday as OPEC warned of slowing demand. Major exporter Russia also hinted that there would only be a loose agreement at the upcoming exporter meeting to rein in ballooning oversupply.

9. Asian stock markets rose to their highest level in more than four months on Thursday, helped by optimism in the global banking sector and hopes of stabilisation in the China's economy.

10. Labour's shadow Culture Secretary Maria Eagle has said Culture Secretary John Whittingdale should stop making press regulation decisions following the revelation he had a relationship with a prostitute.

And finally ... 22 signs you're about to be fired.

Original author: Cyrus Engineer
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