NPR


At The Winter Olympics, Robots Are Here To Help. But Don't Assume They Work All Hours

NPR

A robot sweeps the floor at the main press center at the Pyeonchang Winter Olympics. Steve Russell/Toronto Star via Getty Images hide caption A robot sweeps the floor at the main press center at the Pyeonchang Winter Olympics. Directions, weather reports, water bottles – those are some of the thin...


The Father Of The Internet Sees His Invention Reflected Back Through A 'Black Mirror'

NPR

In 1984, two men were thinking a lot about the Internet. One of them invented it. The other is an artist who would see its impact on society with uncanny prescience. First is the man often called "the father of the Internet," Vint Cerf. Between the early 1970s and early '80s, he led a team of scien...


Artists And Criminals: On The Cutting Edge Of Tech

NPR

Sci-fi writer William Gibson says the best way to imagine new technologies and how they could affect society is not through current expertise but by talking to "either artists or criminals." Ron Bull/Toronto Star via Getty Images hide caption Sci-fi writer William Gibson says the best way to imagin...


Uber, Google's Waymo Settle Case Over Trade Secrets For Self-Driving Cars

NPR

An Uber driverless Ford Fusion drives in Pittsburgh in 2016. On Friday, Uber and Google's Waymo self-driving unit announced a settlement in their trade-secrets case. Jeff Swensen/Getty Images hide caption An Uber driverless Ford Fusion drives in Pittsburgh in 2016. On Friday, Uber and Google's Waym...


Battle Over Self-Driving Cars Goes To Court In Case Between Google's Waymo And Uber

NPR

Waymo alleges that, in early 2016, Anthony Levandowski downloaded 14,000 files related to autonomous vehicle design before leaving to found his own self-driving truck startup with several Google engineers. AFP/AFP/Getty Images hide caption Waymo alleges that, in early 2016, Anthony Levandowski down...


Can Computers Learn Like Humans?

NPR

The world of artificial intelligence has exploded in recent years. Computers armed with AI do everything from drive cars to pick movies you'll probably like. Some have warned we're putting too much trust in computers that appear to do wondrous things. But what exactly do people mean when they talk ...


Wrist Watching: Amazon Patents System To Track, Guide Employees' Hands

NPR

A diagram from an Amazon patent application shows a human worker (labeled with "14") wearing an ultrasonic bracelet tracking his or her hand movements and providing feedback. The patent was granted on Tuesday. Amazon/U.S. Patent and Trademark Office hide caption A diagram from an Amazon patent application shows a human worker (labeled with "14") wearing an ultrasonic bracelet tracking his or her hand movements and providing feedback. The patent was granted on Tuesday. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has granted Amazon two patents for wristbands that could track the exact location of warehouse workers' hands -- and give workers tactile feedback to help guide them to a specific shelf.


'We Swipe Left' On Tinder's 'Discriminatory' Pricing, Court Says

NPR

A California judge said "we swipe left, and reverse" a lower court's ruling. A California judge said "we swipe left, and reverse" a lower court's ruling. A California appeals court has found the dating app Tinder's pricing model to be discriminatory and says the company must stop charging older customers more for its paid premium service. Tinder has argued that the pricing difference on its Tinder Plus service was based on market research finding "customers age 30 and younger have less capacity to pay for premium services" and they "need a lower price to pull the trigger." But Judge Brian Currey, writing for California's 2nd District Court of Appeal earlier this week, wrote that Tinder "employs an arbitrary, class-based, generalization about older users' incomes as a basis for charging them more than younger users."


'Don't Think A Robot Could Do This': Warehouse Workers Aren't Worried For Their Jobs

NPR

Chris Beatty, 26, works at a Radial warehouse in Burlington, N.J. Chris Beatty, 26, works at a Radial warehouse in Burlington, N.J. The wheels of a tall, metal cart squeak as Chris Beatty, 26, pulls it through a maze of aisles inside a cosmetics warehouse in Burlington, N.J. A hand-held scanner helps Beatty find specific items, such as face cream or lipstick -- to be sorted, packed and shipped to online customers. In his industry, this is called picking.


Amazon's Cashier-Less Seattle Grocery Opens To The Public

NPR

Shoppers roam through an Amazon Go store in April. The automated grocery, which had been restricted to Amazon employees, will now be open to the general public starting Monday. Shoppers roam through an Amazon Go store in April. The automated grocery, which had been restricted to Amazon employees, will now be open to the general public starting Monday. Amazon on Monday will open its automated grocery in Seattle to the public, replacing cashiers with a smartphone app and hundreds of small cameras that track purchases.