Monday, April 15

Technology

Two Cases Aim to Cut Off China and Iran From U.S. Technology
Technology

Two Cases Aim to Cut Off China and Iran From U.S. Technology

The U.S. government announced charges in two separate cases on Wednesday aimed at enforcing laws blocking the transfer of critical technologies, part of a broader campaign to hamper military efforts and weapons production in rival countries.One of the complaints was against a U.S. citizen born in China who has been arrested and accused of stealing trade secrets from a private company. The technology, according to court documents, “would be dangerous to U.S. national security if obtained by international actors.”A Justice Department complaint filed in U.S. District Court in California said the stolen material would help the development of technology that allows space-based systems to track ballistic and hypersonic missiles. U.S. officials said technology related to hypersonic missiles and m...
Tucker Carlson’s Visit to Russia Draws Speculation of Putin Interview
Technology

Tucker Carlson’s Visit to Russia Draws Speculation of Putin Interview

Tucker Carlson, the former Fox News host who now has a show on the social network X, has been spotted in Moscow in recent days, leading to speculation in Russia and the United States that he is about to achieve his long-stated goal of interviewing President Vladimir V. Putin.If so, Mr. Carlson would be the first American media figure to land a formal interview with the Russian leader since he invaded Ukraine nearly two years ago.Mr. Putin’s spokesman, Dmitri Peskov, has indicated that Mr. Putin was denying requests from Western new outlets because their countries had been “stupefied” by anti-Russian propaganda. But Mr. Carlson has been a defender of Mr. Putin while attacking his Western critics, placing him at the vanguard of a pro-Putin wing of the American conservative movement.In a call...
How A.I. Is Remodeling the Fantasy Home
Technology

How A.I. Is Remodeling the Fantasy Home

I was scrolling through Instagram recently when I found a new page slipped into my feed through a suggested post: @tinyhouseperfect. It seemed designed to poke at my frustrated longings for a space of my own. I want to own a house; I cannot currently buy a house. But what if the house were very small? Very small, and also perfect?Soon I was navigating the reading nooks and chef’s kitchens of an elfin cottage, a gothic coastal A-frame, a cozy “loch house” in the Scottish Highlands. I had projected my future self to the Scottish seaside, wondering how much the house might cost to rent for a weekend, when I realized that price was no object because the house did not exist. Each of these teensy homes had been rendered by A.I. software and smoothed with an assist from more A.I. software. I had ...
He’s Lost His Marriage, His Followers and His Lamborghini
Technology

He’s Lost His Marriage, His Followers and His Lamborghini

With its streamlined curves and glow-in-the-dark sound system, the silver Lamborghini Huracán Performante was the stuff of teenage fantasy: $350,000 of aerodynamic metals and lightweight upholstery, packed into a taut and powerful body. Ben Armstrong loved it dearly.When he started shopping for a Lamborghini, Mr. Armstrong, a cryptocurrency evangelist with more than one million YouTube subscribers, worried that he’d have to spend months searching. “I think I have to go to Italy to get the Lambo I want,” he texted a business partner. “I don’t want to compromise.” But fate smiled on him. In the fall of 2021, a car dealership in Charlotte, N.C., shipped the Huracán to Mr. Armstrong’s production studio in an Atlanta suburb.As the Lamborghini was lowered from a delivery truck, Mr. Armstrong, be...
Takeaways From the Senate Hearing With Tech C.E.O.s on Online Child Safety
Technology

Takeaways From the Senate Hearing With Tech C.E.O.s on Online Child Safety

“I’m sorry for everything you have all been through,” Mr. Zuckerberg said. “No one should go through the things that your families have suffered.” He said that his company was working so that no one else would have to do so, and did not address Meta’s role.The leaders of Meta and TikTok took most of the heat.Though executives from Meta, Snap, Discord, X and TikTok were all called to the hearing — the latter three were subpoenaed to testify — it was Mr. Zuckerberg and Shou Chew, TikTok’s chief executive, who spent the most time in the spotlight. Senators grilled the two men on the number of abuse incidents across their platforms.Two of the five chief executives agreed to support the Kids Online Safety Act.Evan Spiegel, chief executive of Snap, and Linda Yaccarino, who leads X, both agreed t...
G.M. Profits Hurt by Unsold Electric Vehicles and Strike
Technology

G.M. Profits Hurt by Unsold Electric Vehicles and Strike

General Motors said on Tuesday that its profit in the final three months of 2023 was depressed by losses stemming from unsold electric vehicles and the cost of a 40-day strike at some of its U.S. plants.The automaker, which has been banking on a rapid rise in sales of battery-powered models, earned $2.1 billion in the fourth quarter, it said, up from $2.0 billion a year earlier. G.M.’s revenue jumped about 10 percent, to $171.8 billion.“The pace of E.V. growth has slowed, which has created some uncertainty,” the company’s chief financial officer, Paul Jacobson, said in a conference call.G.M. took a charge of $1.6 billion related to unsold electric vehicles. The strike, by the United Automobile Workers union, cost the company $1.1 billion, and G.M. spent $800 million on a settlement with LG...
Ring to Stop Allowing Police to Request Videos From Security Cameras
Technology

Ring to Stop Allowing Police to Request Videos From Security Cameras

Ring, a home security camera company owned by Amazon, said that it would stop letting police departments request users’ footage in its app amid longstanding concerns from privacy advocates about the company’s relationship with law enforcement.Eric Kuhn, the general manager of subscriptions and software for the Ring app Neighbors, announced on Wednesday that the company was shutting down a feature that allowed the police to request and receive videos from users of the app, a social platform similar to Nextdoor and Citizen where people can share alerts about crime near their home.Mr. Kuhn did not say why Ring was eliminating the app feature, which allowed the police to ask the public for help with active investigations under a special category of posts called “Request for Assistance.”People ...
23andMe Breach Targeted Jewish and Chinese Customers, Lawsuit Says
Technology

23andMe Breach Targeted Jewish and Chinese Customers, Lawsuit Says

The genetic testing company 23andMe is being accused in a class-action lawsuit of failing to protect the privacy of customers whose personal information was exposed last year in a data breach that affected nearly seven million profiles.The lawsuit, which was filed on Friday in federal court in San Francisco, also accused the company of failing to notify customers with Chinese and Ashkenazi Jewish heritage that they appeared to have been specifically targeted, or that their personal genetic information had been compiled into “specially curated lists” that were shared and sold on the dark web.The suit was filed after 23andMe submitted a notification to the California Attorney General’s Office that showed the company was hacked over the course of five months, from late April 2023 through Sept...
The Sleepy Copyright Office in the Middle of a High-Stakes Clash Over A.I.
Technology

The Sleepy Copyright Office in the Middle of a High-Stakes Clash Over A.I.

For decades, the Copyright Office has been a small and sleepy office within the Library of Congress. Each year, the agency’s 450 employees register roughly half a million copyrights, the ownership rights for creative works, based on a two-centuries-old law.In recent months, however, the office has suddenly found itself in the spotlight. Lobbyists for Microsoft, Google, and the music and news industries have asked to meet with Shira Perlmutter, the register of copyrights, and her staff. Thousands of artists, musicians and tech executives have written to the agency, and hundreds have asked to speak at listening sessions hosted by the office.The attention stems from a first-of-its-kind review of copyright law that the Copyright Office is conducting in the age of artificial intelligence. The t...
A.I.’s Latest Challenge: the Math Olympics
Technology

A.I.’s Latest Challenge: the Math Olympics

For four years, the computer scientist Trieu Trinh has been consumed with something of a meta-math problem: how to build an A.I. model that solves geometry problems from the International Mathematical Olympiad, the annual competition for the world’s most mathematically attuned high-school students.Last week Dr. Trinh successfully defended his doctoral dissertation on this topic at New York University; this week, he described the result of his labors in the journal Nature. Named AlphaGeometry, the system solves Olympiad geometry problems at nearly the level of a human gold medalist.While developing the project, Dr. Trinh pitched it to two research scientists at Google, and they brought him on as a resident from 2021 to 2023. AlphaGeometry joins Google DeepMind’s fleet of A.I. systems, which...