TIME - Tech


These 10 Google Calendar Tips Will Make You the Master of Your Schedule

TIME - Tech

No one enjoys being late to anything, be it a meeting, date, or your friend's first improv performance. That's where the humble calendar comes into play. Like all calendars, Google Calendar is, ostensibly, supposed to keep you on track and on time. At least, if you know how to use it. Even if you're someone who schedules everything from dinner to daydreaming, taking hours to learn about every Google Calendar feature or hidden gem could interfere with your already busy schedule.


Meet the AI Robots Helping Take Care of Elderly Patients

TIME - Tech

Robots powered by artificial intelligence have been popping up in hotels, airports and shopping malls. Now, they're showing up at assisted living homes, too. With names like Stevie, Paro and Pillo, these robots can do everything from keeping the elderly company to reminding them to take their medication at the right time. "Robotics has the potential to play a huge role in elder care facilities and hospitals to enable people to do more with less," says Conor McGinn, a roboticist and assistant professor at Trinity College Dublin. Watch the video above to learn more about how robots are being used in elderly care.


Meet the Researchers Working to Make Sure Artificial Intelligence Is a Force for Good

TIME - Tech

With glass interior walls, exposed plumbing and a staff of young researchers dressed like Urban Outfitters models, New York University's AI Now Institute could easily be mistaken for the offices of any one of New York's innumerable tech startups. For many of those small companies (and quite a few larger ones) the objective is straightforward: leverage new advances in computing, especially artificial intelligence (AI), to disrupt industries from social networking to medical research. But for Meredith Whittaker and Kate Crawford, who co-founded AI Now together in 2017, it's that disruption itself that's under scrutiny. They are two of many experts who are working to ensure that, as corporations, entrepreneurs and governments roll out new AI applications, they do so in a way that's ethically sound. "These tools are now impacting so many parts of our everyday life, from healthcare to criminal justice to education to hiring, and it's happening simultaneously," says Crawford.


Artificial Intelligence Could Improve Health Care for All--Unless it Doesn't

TIME - Tech

You could be forgiven for thinking that AI will soon replace human physicians based on headlines such as "The AI Doctor Will See You Now," "Your Future Doctor May Not Be Human," and "This AI Just Beat Human Doctors on a Clinical Exam." But experts say the reality is more of a collaboration than an ousting: Patients could soon find their lives partly in the hands of AI services working alongside human clinicians. There is no shortage of optimism about AI in the medical community. But many also caution the hype surrounding AI has yet to be realized in real clinical settings. There are also different visions for how AI services could make the biggest impact.


Why Video Game Creators Are Skipping the Bloodshed and Making 'Pacifist Games' Instead

TIME - Tech

A deer and a fawn are lost far from home, with no idea where they are or how they can get back to the woods. With the help of glowing antlers, curiosity and sheer will, the animals travel through wheat fields, abandoned subway systems and surreal sewers to make it back where they belong. This is Way to the Woods, a video game for PC and Xbox One due out in 2020 from an independent, 20-year-old developer named Anthony Tan. Following in the footsteps of similar so-called "pacifist" games like Journey, Firewatch and Night in the Woods, Way to the Woods is aimed at gamers looking for adult experiences that don't rely on violence to tell a compelling story. While President Donald Trump and others continue to suggest a connection between violent video games and mass shootings despite a lack of evidence, there has been a notable spike in games like Tan's that are more about exploration, story and design than racking up a body count.


Why TIME's 2019 Tech Optimists Are Upbeat About Silicon Valley's Future

TIME - Tech

As data breaches, misuse of personal information and the spread of disinformation erode the public's trust in Silicon Valley, it can be all too easy to become cynical about technology's impact on the world. But there are still plenty of reasons to be optimistic about tech's role in society moving forward. Below, TIME speaks to 10 innovators, founders, investors and even athletes who remain upbeat about technology's influence despite the many challenges facing the industry today. Moustapha Cisse left Senegal a decade ago to study artificial intelligence, and now he believes the technology can change Africa for the better. Cisse, 34, is leading Google's AI research center in Accra, Ghana, the company's first such venture in Africa. "I built my team here around people who are really committed to make a difference in people's lives," Cisse tells TIME. "[They] bring a fresh perspective in the field by looking at the problems that we have in Africa." Growing up, no one would have expected Cisse to be heading up a multi-billion dollar corporation's research initiative.


How To Delete Your Data From Facebook Forever

TIME - Tech

Facebook has agreed to pay a record $5 billion settlement to resolve an investigation into privacy violations, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced Wednesday. The company will also create an "independent privacy committee" to ensure "greater accountability at the board of directors level," an FTC press release says. But the settlement won't affect Facebook's corporate governance structure, which lets Zuckerberg hold sway over the company's actions. Facebook has promised to clean up its act when it comes to privacy matters. But the social media giant's missteps have nonetheless cost it the trust of some users.


Tinder's Newest Feature Aims to Keep LGBTQ People Safer Across the World

TIME - Tech

With a new feature, Tinder says it wants to make the swiping experience safer for its LGBTQ users traveling and living in certain countries. On Wednesday, the dating app introduced a new safety update dubbed "Traveler Alert" that will warn users who have identified themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or queer when they enter a country that could criminalize them for being out. The app plans to use the locations from users' devices to determine if there is a threat to the user's safety, where users can opt to have their profile hidden during their stay or make their profile public again. The caveat being that if a user decides to have their profile public, their sexual preference or gender identity will no longer be disclosed on the app until they return to a location where the user is deemed safer to disclose their identity. In the statement, Tinder says they developed the feature so that users "can take extra caution and do not unknowingly place themselves in danger for simply being themselves."


What Will Smart Homes Look Like 10 Years From Now?

TIME - Tech

It's 6 A.M., and the alarm clock is buzzing earlier than usual. It's not a malfunction: the smart clock scanned your schedule and adjusted because you've got that big presentation first thing in the morning. Your shower automatically turns on and warms to your preferred 103 F. The electric car is ready to go, charged by the solar panels or wind turbine on your roof. When you get home later, there's an unexpected package waiting, delivered by drone. You open it to find cold medicine.


Amazon Is Building a Voice-Controlled Robot That's Like a 'Mobile Alexa'

TIME - Tech

Amazon is developing a higher quality version of the Echo speaker and ramping up work on its home robot. The company plans to release the new Echo by next year, according to people familiar with the product. Prototypes of the cylindrical speaker are wider than the current Echo to squeeze in additional components including at least four tweeters, said the people, who requested anonymity to discuss an internal matter. The robot, previously reported by Bloomberg, has wheels and can be controlled by Alexa voice commands, the people said. Both devices are being developed by Amazon Lab126, a research and development arm based in Sunnyvale, California.