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Apple Data Downloads, A Dating App for Trump Fans, and More Security News This Week

WIRED

As has become an unwelcome tradition, as Friday wound down and the weekend was so close we could nearly taste it, breaking news hit. The biggest Friday night bombshell came in the form of an indictment of a Russian national engaged in a massive conspiracy to influence the upcoming midterm elections. With millions of dollars at her disposal, she and her co-conspirators have allegedly been engaging in a coordinated effort to use Americans' weaknesses and divisions against us, to amp up racial discord, and generally sow chaos and discontent. Of course, it wasn't like the week had been drama free up until that point. The fun, if you can call it that, began last Saturday, when Robert Mueller expert Garrett Graff explained what he expected to see next from the investigation into Russia's attack on the 2016 election.


Three artificial intelligence and tech tools trying to boost people's mental health

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If you're looking for it, there is plenty of bad news in the tech world. From concerns about hacking and identity theft to a 2017 survey out of England that ranked Instagram as "worst for young people's mental health" compared to four other social platforms, it can be enough to make you want to become a Luddite. But the other side of the issue might be able to put a smile on your face: Tech companies and researchers are turning to AI and other software to try to solve just about any problem you can think of, from identifying fake news, to noticing if someone falls, to looking for ways to speed up the amount of time an MRI scan takes. Some companies are building software to help you change your thoughts for the better or even analyze a voice for signs of depression. For example, Woebot is a cute chatbot app designed to be an on-call emotional helper.


Is the Robot Psychologist the Next Big AI App?

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Mention the phrase "robot psychologist" and meme-worthy images of automatons or perhaps human-like robot hosts fictionalized by HBO's Westworld may come to mind. Yet part of what practicing psychologists do, such as administering certain types of psychological tests, assessments, and questionnaires, can be automated -- the technical capabilities exist today. And the technology is growing exponentially more sophisticated. For example, researchers at MIT have created an artificial neural network computer model that can detect depression from natural conversation [1]. Will robot psychologists be commonplace one day?


10 Examples Of Customer Experience Innovation In Banking

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Customer experience is often the deciding factor when it comes to banking. Today's customers want personalized interactions, simplified banking and access to their accounts through technology. Banks that can innovate and meet customers' needs have a huge competitive advantage. Here are 10 examples of innovative banking customer experiences. Bank of America recently launched its AI-powered chatbot, Erica, and saw more than 1 million users in the first three months.


Facebook admits its camera-equipped listening device can collect your data for ads

The Independent

Facebook's decision to launch a camera-equipped listening device for people's living rooms, just months after one of the biggest data scandals in history, was greeted with a fair amount of suspicion. Given that Facebook's business model relies on using people's data to serve them personalised ads, it seemed fair to assume that the Portal smart speaker could serve a purpose beyond simply acting as a voice-activated home assistant that can handle video calls. Yet Facebook assured people that "no data collected through Portal – even call log data or app usage data, like the fact that you listen to Spotify – will be used to target users with ads on Facebook." Within days of announcing this claim, however, Facebook was forced to backtrack. If you haven't done this already, do it now.


Adobe Characterizer turns you into an animated drawing with the power of AI

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When I was a kid, I briefly held the aspiration of making my own cartoons. I dabbled in the animation portion of Flash and made a few cheesy .flvs, Maybe if I'd started in 2018, things would've gone differently. Increasingly powerful technology and the advent of AI make it easier to get your feet wet in animation than ever. Case in point: Adobe is releasing an impressive tool called Characterizer, that can combine your face with reference artwork to create your own motion-capture puppet.


Self-checkout tills at British supermarkets are getting an upgrade

Daily Mail

Tesco and Asda could install a facial recognition system at their checkouts which would check a customer's age when they buy alcohol and other restricted items. The'Fastlane' software would take a picture of the customer and approve the purchase if they are clearly old enough, meaning a staff member would not need to come and intervene. Shoppers will not have to register in advance, although regular customers can sign up to an app by linking a selfie to a passport or ID document, manufacturers said. Asda, Morrisons and Tesco are the most likely to trial the software although Sainsbury's has said it will not, the Daily Telegraph reported. If the photo does not prove a customer was old enough then supermarket staff would have to check their ID in person.


10 apps that can make your life way easier, all of which are on sale

Mashable

Apps make the world go'round. Whether you're on the hunt for an app that can help you create a business plan or a platform that affords you unlimited access to video games, we've got you covered. These days, everything in the startup world seems to be "the Netflix for [blank]" -- even apps. Setapp is a subscription service for Mac apps in which you gain access to over 100 curated apps, and you only have to pay a single monthly price as opposed to purchasing them one by one. It features a single, intuitive library, and a treasure trove of apps ranging from maintenance and finance to productivity and creativity.


12 ubiquitous artificial intelligence powered apps that are changing lives Packt Hub

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Artificial Intelligence is making it easier for people to do things every day. You can schedule your day, search for photos of loved ones, type emails on the go, or get things done with the virtual assistant. AI also provides innovative ways of tackling existing problems, from healthcare to advancing scientific discovery. According to Gartner's Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2018, the next few years will see every app, application, and service incorporating AI at some level. With major companies like Google, Amazon, IBM investing in AI and incorporating AI in their products, this statement, instead of a prediction is becoming a fact.


Dating app for Trump supporters leaves users' data open to hackers on first day in business

Daily Mail

A dating app set up to help supporters of President Donald Trump find each other in America's confusing dating landscape hit a snag on its first day in operation when a computer security specialist was able to download every piece of data on its servers. That included the first 1,600 users' photos and personal messages between people chatting online. Instead of disrupting the world of'DonaldDaters,' however, French security researcher Baptiste Robert blew the whistle publicly on Monday just hours after the product went live. 'You should not use this app,' he tweeted in a message to Trump fans. 'In 5 minutes, I managed to get: - the list of all the people registered - name - Photo - personal messages - token to steal their session.'