aerospace ame cloud ventures Apple Apps articles Asia Asteroid Augmented Reality Auris Health Automotive automotive industry Beijing Bill Gates Blue Origin chief technology officer China computing Culture Daily Crunch data centers Desktop Metal driver electric cars electric vehicle Enterprise Europe films Finance Food and Drug Administration Gadgets geothermal energy Google Government Hardware healthcare honda investments iOS jpl Khosla Ventures kids korea lawyer Marc Benioff mars mars rover massachusetts Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media mining Mobile movies NASA Opportunity pentagon Policy Politics president Privacy Publishing Recent Funding Reddit robot rocket Salesforce salesforce.com Science Security seedinvest Space spaceflight Startups steve huffman surgery TC Teens Tencent transparency report transport Transportation tv U.S. government United States university of washington Virtual reality virtual reality headset warrant canary wattpad world wide web xi jinping Yahoo

Daily Crunch: Apple’s subscription fix

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here.
1. Apple’s iOS update makes it easier to get to your subscriptions
Moving the Manage Subscriptions menu so that it’s just one click away from your App Store profile might seem like a minor change, but it was needed: As more mobile apps have adopted subscriptions as a means of generating revenue, it’s become critical to ensure consumers know how to turn off their subscriptions.
Plus, Apple is expected to launch some subscriptions of its own, namely for its streaming video and news services.
2. Instagram confirms that a bug is causing follower counts to change
Don’t panic! Instagram says it’s “aware of an issue that is causing a change in account follower numbers for some people right now” and is “working to resolve this as quickly as possible.”
3. Autonomous truck startup TuSimple hits unicorn..

aerospace ame cloud ventures Apple Apps articles Asia Asteroid Augmented Reality Auris Health Automotive automotive industry Beijing Bill Gates Blue Origin chief technology officer China computing Culture data centers Desktop Metal driver electric cars electric vehicle Enterprise Europe films Finance Food and Drug Administration Gadgets geothermal energy Google Government Hardware healthcare honda investments jpl Khosla Ventures kids korea lawyer Marc Benioff mars mars rover massachusetts Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media mining Mobile movies NASA Opportunity pentagon Policy Politics president Privacy Publishing Recent Funding Reddit robot rocket Salesforce salesforce.com Science Security seedinvest Space spaceflight Startups steve huffman surgery TC Teens Tencent transparency report transport Transportation tv U.S. government United States university of washington Virtual reality virtual reality headset warrant canary wattpad world wide web xi jinping Yahoo

SEC charges former Apple compliance lawyer with insider trading, avoiding $382K in losses

The shine on Apple is getting a little tarnished. Today, the SEC filed a suit against Gene Levoff, a lawyer who used to work for the iPhone giant, accusing him of insider trading, selling millions of dollars in stock ahead of earnings and saving himself some $382,000 in losses in the process, and, in a separate, earlier period, earning $245,000 in profits.
Levoff started to work for Apple in 2008, first as director of corporate law and then senior director. He was put on leave from Apple in July 2018, and his employment was terminated in September 2018.
The suit covers activities in 2015 and 2016, years when Apple saw a dip in performance before it roared back with a trillion-dollar market cap in 2017.
The news is especially ironic — although perhaps not surprising, considering the information Levoff had at his disposal: he had been the company’s senior director of Corporate Law and Corporate Secretary of Apple and was “responsible for ensuring compliance with the company’s insider ..

aerospace ame cloud ventures Apps articles Asia Asteroid Augmented Reality Auris Health Automotive automotive industry Beijing Bill Gates Blue Origin chief technology officer China computing Culture data centers Desktop Metal driver electric cars electric vehicle Enterprise Europe films Food and Drug Administration Gadgets geothermal energy Google Government Hardware healthcare honda investments jpl Khosla Ventures kids korea Marc Benioff mars mars rover massachusetts Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media mining Mobile movies NASA Opportunity pentagon Politics president Privacy Publishing Recent Funding Reddit robot rocket Salesforce salesforce.com Science Security seedinvest Space spaceflight Startups steve huffman surgery TC Teens Tencent transparency report transport Transportation tv U.S. government United States university of washington Virtual reality virtual reality headset warrant canary wattpad world wide web xi jinping Yahoo

Google says it’ll invest $13B in US data centers and offices this year

Google today announced that it will invest $13 billion in data centers and offices across the U.S. in 2019. That’s up from $9 billion in investments last year. Many of these investments will go to states like Nebraska, Nevada, Ohio, Texas, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Virginia, where Google plans new or expanded data centers. Though like most years, it’ll also continue to expand many of its existing offices in Seattle, Chicago and New York, as well as in its home state of California.
Given Google’s push for more cloud customers, it’s also interesting to see that the company continues to expand its data center presence across the country. Google will soon open its first data centers in Nevada, Nebraska, Ohio and Texas, for example, and it will expand its Oklahoma, South Carolina and Virginia data centers. Google clearly isn’t slowing down in its race to compete with AWS and Azure.
“These new investments will give us the capacity to hire tens of thousands of employees, and enable the c..

aerospace ame cloud ventures Apps articles Asia Asteroid Augmented Reality Auris Health Automotive automotive industry Beijing Bill Gates Blue Origin chief technology officer China computing Culture Desktop Metal driver electric cars electric vehicle Europe films Food and Drug Administration Gadgets geothermal energy Government Hardware healthcare honda jpl Khosla Ventures kids korea Marc Benioff mars mars rover massachusetts Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media mining Mobile movies NASA Opportunity pentagon Politics president Privacy Publishing Recent Funding Reddit robot rocket Salesforce salesforce.com Science Security seedinvest Space spaceflight Startups steve huffman surgery TC Teens Tencent transparency report transport Transportation tv U.S. government United States university of washington Virtual reality virtual reality headset warrant canary wattpad world wide web xi jinping Yahoo

Reddit says government data requests more than doubled in 2018

Reddit has said the number of government requests for user data has more than doubled in 2018 than on the previous year.
The news and content sharing site said in its latest transparency report, posted Wednesday, it received a 752 requests from governments during the year, up from 310 requests a year earlier.
Broken down, that’s 171 requests to preserve account data — up from 79 requests in 2017; and 581 requests to produce user data — up from 231 requests.
Reddit said it complied with 77 percent of requests to turn over user data, and 91 percent of preservation requests. However, the company says it “only processes preservation requests” that originate in the U.S.
For the year, the company said it was asked by the U.S. government to remove “an image and a large volume of comments made underneath it for potential breach of a federal law,” without saying what the post was. But Reddit said it did not comply with the “overbroad” request as the government didn’t demonstrate illegality…

aerospace ame cloud ventures Apps Asia Asteroid Augmented Reality Auris Health Automotive automotive industry Bill Gates Blue Origin chief technology officer computing Desktop Metal driver electric cars electric vehicle Europe films Food and Drug Administration Gadgets geothermal energy Government Hardware healthcare honda jpl Khosla Ventures kids korea Marc Benioff mars mars rover massachusetts Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media mining Mobile movies NASA Opportunity pentagon Publishing Recent Funding robot rocket Salesforce salesforce.com Science seedinvest Space spaceflight Startups surgery TC Teens transport Transportation tv United States university of washington Virtual reality virtual reality headset wattpad Yahoo

Opportunity Mars Rover goes to its last rest after extraordinary 14-year mission

Opportunity, one of two rovers sent to Mars in 2004, is officially offline for good, NASA and JPL officials announced today at a special press conference. “I declare the Opportunity mission as complete, and with it the Mars Exploration Rover mission as complete,” said NASA’s Thomas Zurbuchen.
The cause of Opportunity’s demise was a planet-scale sandstorm that obscured its solar panels too completely, and for too long, for its onboard power supply to survive and keep even its most elementary components running. It last communicated on June 10, 2018, but could easily have lasted a few months more as its batteries ran down — a sad picture to be sure. Even a rover designed for the harsh Martian climate can’t handle being trapped under a cake of dust at -100 degrees celsius for long.
The team has been trying to reach it for months, employing a variety of increasingly desperate techniques to get the rover to at least respond; even if its memory had been wiped clean or instruments knocked o..

aerospace ame cloud ventures Apps Asia Asteroid Augmented Reality Auris Health Automotive automotive industry Bill Gates Blue Origin chief technology officer computing Desktop Metal driver electric cars electric vehicle Europe films Food and Drug Administration geothermal energy Hardware healthcare honda Khosla Ventures kids korea Marc Benioff massachusetts Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media mining Mobile movies NASA pentagon Publishing Recent Funding robot rocket Salesforce salesforce.com seedinvest Space spaceflight Startups surgery TC Teens transport Transportation tv United States university of washington Virtual reality virtual reality headset wattpad Yahoo

HyperSciences wants to ‘gamechange’ spaceflight with hypersonic drilling tech

It’s no coincidence that Elon Musk wants to both tunnel down into and soar above the Earth. If you ask the team at HyperSciences, the best way to get to space is to flip drilling technology upside down and point it at the sky. In the process, that would mean ditching the large, expensive fuel stages that propel what we generally think of as a rocket — massive cylindrical thing, tiny payload at the tip — into space.
This month, the company hit a major milestone on its quest to get to suborbital space, capping off Phase I of a research grant with NASA with a pair of successful proof-of-concept launches demonstrating the company’s one-two punch of ram acceleration and chemical combustion.
HyperSciences put its vision to the test at Spaceport America, conducting a series of low altitude tests at the desolate launch site an hour outside of Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. The company launched “a number of projectiles,” ranging from 1.5 ft long to over 9 ft long. HyperSciences sent up s..

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Check out the first interior view of Honda’s Urban EV prototype

Honda has been teasing its all-electric urban vehicle in 2017, when the automaker showed off its vision of the future — that had a distinct 1970s first generation Civic flare.
Now, two years later a production version of the Urban EV is nearly here. And the automaker is finally giving a glimpse —albeit the tiniest of peeks — of the Urban EV’s interior.
The full reveal of the Urban EV will come next month at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show. And from there, it won’t be long before the electric vehicle hits the marketplace. The automaker has said it plans to bring the EV to the European market by late 2019.
Honda reveals first glimpse at interior of electric vehicle prototype bound for the 2019 Geneva Motor Show
The image shows a dash with a tech-forward and uncluttered feel. An expansive digital screen on the right and a digital instrument cluster in the driver’s line of sight. The steering wheel is equipped with toggles, which will likely be used to access features in the vehicle.
Obser..

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Asteroid is building a human-machine interaction engine for AR developers

When we interact with computers today we move the mouse, we scroll the trackpad, we tap the screen, but there is so much that the machines don’t pick up on, what about where we’re looking, the subtle gestures we make and what we’re thinking?
Asteroid is looking to get developers comfortable with the idea that future interfaces are going to take in much more biosensory data. The team has built a node-based human-machine interface engine for macOS and iOS that allows developers to build interactions that can be imported into Swift applications.
“What’s interesting about emerging human-machine interface tech is the hope that the user may be able to “upload” as much as they can “download” today,”Asteroid founder Saku Panditharatne wrote in a Medium post.

To bring attention to their development environment, they’ve launched a crowdfunding campaign that gives a decent snapshot of the depth of experiences that can be enabled by today’s commercially available biosensors. Asteroid definitel..

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Bill Gates-backed Vicarious Surgical adds a virtual reality twist to robots in the operating room

In an operating room in rural Idaho, doctors prep a patient for surgery. They make a tiny, thumb-sized incision into the patient and insert a small robot while across the country a surgeon puts on a virtual reality headset, grabs their controllers, and prepares to operate.
While this scene may seem like science fiction now, a Charlestown, Mass.-based startup called Vicarious Surgical, is developing the technology to make that vision a reality.
The company’s co-founders, Adam Sachs and Sammy Khalifa, have been developing and refining the technology almost since they met at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as undergraduates.
The 27 year-old Sachs said that he and Khalifa formally launched the company roughly five years ago when they graduated from MIT and have been working on it ever since.
“We’ve been working on ways to miniaturize robotics and put all of the motion of surgery into the abdominal cavity,” says Sachs. “If you put all of the motion inside the abdominal cavity ..

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Wattpad’s latest deal will turn its stories into TV shows and movies in Korea

Wattpad’s ambitions to grow beyond a storytelling community for young adults took another leap forward today with the announcement of a new partnership that will help expand its reach in Asia. The company has teamed up with Huayi Brothers in Korea, who will now be Wattpad’s exclusive entertainment partner in the region. The two companies will co-produce content sourced from Wattpad’s community, as it’s adapted for film, TV and other digital media projects in the country.
Development deals like this are not new to Wattpad at this point.
In the U.S., the storytelling app made headlines for bringing the teen hit “The Kissing Booth” to Netflix, which shot up to become the No. 4 movie on IMDb for a time.
Wattpad also recently announced a 2nd season for “Light as a Feather,” which it produces with AwesomenessTV and Grammnet for Hulu.
It additionally works with eOne, Sony, SYFY, Universal Cable Productions (a division of NBCUniversal), and Germany’s Bavaria Fiction.
Outside the U.S., Wat..