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Preview: Innovation

Christian Science Monitor | Innovation



Sci/Tech, Pioneers, Responsible Tech, Tech Culture



 



Teen creates a safety app for lone commuters

Medha Gupta felt unsafe walking home alone, so, as most teenagers would, she turned to her phone. Medha, however, went one step further, turning her worry into an app to help others traveling alone.

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Data protection officers see job offers skyrocket with looming European regulation

The European Union's General Data Protection Regulation, which will give citizens more control over their online information, is set to take effect in May. Now companies around the world are improving consumer data monitoring, with the help of many more employees.

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Meltdown, Spectre chip vulnerabilities: What you need to know

Big security flaws have been revealed in nearly all the world’s computer processors.

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As the world becomes computerized, can we bridge digital inequalities?

Global initiatives seek to teach online skills to increase access to jobs and education. However, some experts debate how well these schemes reach those most in need since to work well users first have to be able to afford an internet connection.

  

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Facebook's app for kids draws criticism from parents

On Tuesday, a group of parenting organizations and advocates sent a letter to Facebook urging it to end its new messaging app for kids. The app allows children under the age of 13 to chat using their parents accounts, but critics worry it exploits young users. 

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Trump security team explores US-built 5G network

Due to concerns about the growing Chinese share of the wireless market the Trump administration says a nationalized wireless network would counter Chinese spying on US phones. 

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As clean energy prices fall, rural communities in Asia, Africa benefit

As renewable energy becomes cheaper and more commercially used, unplugged communities in Asia, Africa, and other corners of the world will soon have to access to modern energy. Places in Mauritius and Rwanda are already outfitting homes with solar systems.

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New 3-D projection technology allows 'printing in space'

Scientists at Brigham Young University have harnessed nearly unseen airborne particles to project three-dimensional images into open space. The new technology produces sharper and more accurate displays than holograms. 

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Now, even some tech firms acknowledge tech's downside

The request by influential shareholders for Apple to help curb excessive digital media use among teens and Mark Zuckerberg's decision to revamp Facebook's newsfeed comes amid a growing discontent over the ways that technology platforms foster habit-forming behavior. Some companies, including Facebook, appear to be listening.

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18 bright ideas for 2018, from flying taxis to companion robots

New technologies on the horizon will transform how we work and live.

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Companies race to produce supersonic jets suited for everyday travel

Relying on venture capital, companies such as Lockheed Martin and Boom Technology aim to make supersonic jets that are fuel efficient and quiet enough to be used for business travel.

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Facebook unveils AI-powered feature to help the blind use its site

The social media giant is advancing its algorithms with face recognition text-to-audio software.

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Can a machine be creative?

Computerized forays into the arts prompt new exploration of what it means to be creative.

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Tesla builds giant battery to help meet power needs in South Australia

Tesla Inc has built a giant lithium-ion battery to supplement the power from wind farms. Tesla and the South Australian government hope this will provide more stability in the nation's often inconsistent power grid. 

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As fears cloud net neutrality debate, is common ground being overlooked?

The complexities of net neutrality don't exactly lend themselves to easy dinner-time conversation. Many Americans are taking sides as a gut reaction to abstract fears, without exploring the nuances of the debate. 

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Tesla's next goal: electric semi-trucks

Tesla has unveiled an electric semi-truck that will go 500 miles on a single charge, have an autopilot system, and be capable of driving in convoy with autonomous technology. 

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Uber and NASA partner for development of flying taxi service

NASA has struck a deal with Uber to develop software that would manage logistics of the proposed flying taxi service that could come to Los Angeles and Dallas/Fort Worth as soon as 2020. 

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How these librarians are changing how we think about digital privacy

The Library Freedom Project aims to train librarians in the basics of digital surveillance, adding to a long tradition of public libraries standing in opposition to state and corporate power. 

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Showdown looms in Saudi Arabia's e-commerce market

Saudi Arabia's online retail market has remained largely untapped, with only one major company operating within the Kingdom. Now Amazon and Noon.com will be competing for online customers. 

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Is technology more distracting than helpful on the road? New study says, yes.

New cars today come with more built-in technology than ever before. Auto makers say it increases safety, but new studies show that the increasingly complicated systems are demanding more of the driver's attention and compromising safety.

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