Pope Francis issues social media warning: 'Don't be led astray by this false image of reality!'

The Independent - Tech

Pope Francis has warned young people about their use of social media, urging them to create their own history and reject "false" depictions of reality. The Argentinian pontiff was recording a video message for World Youth Day, which takes places on 9 April. "Many people say that young people are distracted and superficial," he said. Still, we should acknowledge our need to reflect on our lives and direct them towards the future. "In the social media, we see faces of young people appearing in any number of pictures recounting more or less real events, but we don't know how much of all this is really'history', an experience that can be communicated and endowed with purpose and meaning."

WhatsApp temporarily suspends sharing European user data with parent company Facebook

The Independent - Tech

WhatsApp has temporarily suspended giving parent company Facebook information about users in Europe for ad targeting, responding to concerns there over privacy, a source close to the matter said Tuesday. Conversations with officials in Europe over the past few months resulted in the social network deciding to only tapping into WhatsApp user data there for purposes such as fighting spam, according to the source. The break was described as an effort to give regulators time to share privacy concerns and for Facebook to consider ways to address them. German data protection authorities in September cited privacy concerns when they blocked Facebook from collecting subscriber data from WhatsApp there. "It has to be (the users') decision whether they want to connect their account with Facebook," Hamburg's Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information Johannes Caspar said at the time.

Not Your Father's AI: Artificial Intelligence Hits the Catwalk at NYFW 2017


This is exactly what Qzone, one of China's largest online social network platforms owned by Tencent, YouTu Lab, an AI research lab under Tencent focusing on machine learning, and Vipshop Holdings Limited, China's leading online discount retailer for brands, have joined hands to accomplish. The three platforms have produced a new AI powered report that reveals the fashion preferences of China's "post-95" generation in terms of most popular colors, fabrics and patterns and inspired a new collection by famous Chinese designer Chi Zhang, named Designer of the year by Esquire China, to be launched at New York Fashion Week 2017. This is the first time that AI technology has been leveraged to identify fashion trends to guide the design of a major new collection for presentation at New York Fashion Week. By applying facial recognition technology to big data aggregated on Tencent's Qzone platform, YouTu Lab's algorithm identified the ages of "post-95" users accurately within three years. In order to analyze fashion preferences, the AI-powered technology was able to distinguish users' clothing from a multitude of varied backgrounds with 95% accuracy.

What Robots Can Learn from Babies

MIT Technology Review

Children quickly learn to predict what will happen if they turn a cup filled with juice upside down. Robots, on the other hand, don't have a clue. Researchers at the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence (Ai2) in Seattle have developed a computer program that shows how machines determine how the objects captured by a camera will most likely behave. This could help make robots and other machines less prone to error, and might help self-driving cars navigate unfamiliar scenes more safely. The system, developed by Roozbeh Mottaghi and colleagues, draws conclusions about the physical properties of a scene using a combination of machine learning and 3-D modeling.

Facebook to Highlight Messenger at F8 Conference 4-Traders


At its annual F8 developer conference this coming week, Facebook Inc. will feature enhanced tools for commerce over its Messenger app, according to people familiar with the matter. The new offerings will use so-called chatbot technology to help users order goods and services through the app, the people said. This will be the second consecutive year Facebook has highlighted Messenger at F8, a sign of messaging's growing prominence inside the company. Last year, Facebook opened Messenger to outside developers, including makers of photo- and video-editing apps, and businesses such as Everlane and Zulily, which use the app to field customer questions and provide shipping updates. Inc., which sells and delivers flowers and food baskets, as a potential partner for the new Messenger services, according to a person familiar with the conversations.