Google’s Co-Head of Ethical AI Says She Was Fired for Email

(Bloomberg) — Timnit Gebru, a co-leader of the Ethical Artificial Intelligence team at Google, said she was fired for sending an email that management deemed “inconsistent with the expectations of a Google manager.”

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The email and the firing were the culmination of about a week of wrangling over the company’s request that Gebru retract an AI ethics paper she had co-written with six others, including four Google employees, that was submitted for consideration for an industry conference next year, Gebru said in an interview Thursday. If she wouldn’t retract the paper, Google at least wanted the names of the Google employees removed.

Gebru asked Google Research vice president Megan Kacholia for an explanation and told her that without more discussion on the paper and the way it was handled she would plan to resign after a transition period. She also wanted to make sure she was clear

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How Google’s Project Guideline Technology Helped A Blind Runner Gain ‘The Freedom To Run Solo’

In a blog post published last week, Google shared a first-person account by Thomas Panek on using Google’s Project Guideline technology to help him better pursue his passion for running. An avid runner, Panek, who is blind, has completed more than twenty marathons, including five Boston Marathons. Last year, he became the first blind runner to complete the New York City Half Marathon guided entirely by dogs. Panek is president and CEO at Guiding Eyes For The Blind. The organization helps people with vision loss access resources such as orientation & mobility training, guide dogs, and more. “[We] work tirelessly to help people with vision loss receive running guide dogs that can help them live more active and independent lives,” he wrote.

Project Guideline is a Google Research initiative, a group that tinkers with

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Google’s new advertising technology is under the regulatory microscope after a group of businesses called for it to be legally blocked

Google’s Privacy Sandbox would replace cross-site tracking through cookies, which are pieces of data downloaded from sites when users visit them.


Tobias Schwarz/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

The U.K. competition regulator is considering a formal investigation into Google’s new digital advertising tool, following a complaint from a group of online businesses that called on intervention to block the launch of the technology.

On Monday, the Competition and Markets Authority acknowledged a complaint from Marketers For An Open Web (MOW), a consortium of “key stakeholders involved in web advertising” including publishers and marketers.

The complaint targets the new Privacy Sandbox tool from Google, owned by parent company Alphabet
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which, according to the online search giant, is a framework for delivering targeted advertisements without letting personalized user data leave the confines of the Google Chrome internet browser. 

The Privacy Sandbox would replace cross-site tracking through cookies, which are pieces of data

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SolidRun takes on Google’s Raspberry Pi-like computer

Israeli edge-computing outfit SolidRun has launched a new lineup of Raspberry Pi-like computers based on NXP’s new i.MX 8M Plus application processor. 

SolidRun makes edge computing kit containing Arm-based and Intel chips. Earlier this year, it teamed up with application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) chip manufacturer Gyrfalcon Technology to build the Arm-based, Linux Janux GS31 AI inference server.

Now the company has launched three new single-board computers powered by NXP’s i.MX 8M Plus application processors. 

They’re aimed at the same industrial market Raspberry Pi is targeting beyond its traditional education purposes – and which Google is also targeting with its line of Coral-branded single-board computers. 

SolidRun promises an edge-computing system that allows developers to run machine-learning applications in the field, far away from data centers, much like Google’s AI-focused Coral computers. 

The new iMX8M Plus CoM boards, which run Linux and Android, are available with four-core and two-core processors in a

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Google’s new tool helps cities plant trees to combat the climate crisis

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Google is scoping out tree coverage in Los Angeles.


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Google is working on bringing more shade to help cool our cities as the climate crisis worsens. The new Tree Canopy Lab combines artificial intelligence and aerial imaging to help cities see where there are gaps in their tree coverage and tree planting projects. Cities will then know where to plant more trees, Google said.

Google is working with the City of Los Angeles on the project, and said it plans to make insights from Tree Canopy Lab available to hundreds of cities in the next year. 

“Extreme temperatures are becoming more common in cities where concrete and infrastructure are now creating heat islands — areas that experience higher temperatures, leading to poor air quality, dehydration and other public health concerns,” Google

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Gmail users get new controls for data used to personalize Google’s ‘smart’ features

Google is introducing new controls for data it uses to personalize various “smart” features across its suite of products. This means Gmail users will soon be able to access a setting that stipulates whether their Gmail, Chat, or Meet data can be leveraged for Google’s automated Smart Reply or Smart Compose, for example, or whether bill payment reminders gleaned from email data can be issued through Google Assistant.

The launch comes as Google and other internet giants face increasing scrutiny over their data privacy practices, ushering in new regulations designed to protect consumers’ online privacy.

Smart data

Google has introduced myriad “smart” features that apply AI and machine learning techniques to user data to enhance its services. For example, Gmail users are likely familiar with Smart Compose, which is basically auto-complete for emails — it can use historical grammar and typing habits to make word and sentence suggestions in real

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Google’s critics and rivals call for swift EU antitrust action

(Reuters) — A group of 165 companies and industry bodies have called on EU antitrust enforcers to take a tougher line against Google, saying the U.S. tech giant unfairly favors its own services on its web searches.

The group includes U.S. and UK companies as well as peers in 21 EU countries. It sent a joint letter to EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager on Thursday, saying Google was giving its own services, such as those for accommodation, travel and jobs, preferential placement in its search results and urging swift action to stop the practice.

Google, a unit of Alphabet, has refuted assertions that it unfairly favors its own services. It says that its users are not locked in and that competition to its services is just one click away on the internet.

Vestager has levied fines totalling 8.25 billion euros ($9.7 billion) against Google in the past three

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Google’s Device Lock Controller is a hidden app

Google Pixel 5 Google logo macro

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

Updated, November 6, 2020 (17:53 PM): Google got back to Android Authority with an explanation about the app described below. As it turns out, this app first became active in July of this year, but only in Kenya. In that country, Google partnered with companies to get Android Go phones to people who otherwise couldn’t afford one. The Device Lock Controller app is thus intended to help creditors prevent defaulted loans for those devices.

However, a Google spokesperson said that this app wasn’t supposed to be active in the United States. It was mistakenly uploaded to the US version of the Play Store, which is why it appears new to us and why it does not appear on the list with other Google LLC apps.

The original article speculating on the Device Lock Controller app is below.


Original article: If you want to find

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GoogleBig Tech Compliance Tracker: Google’s DOJ Suit

Here’s the latest news from Google and the technology industry, which is coming under increasing scrutiny from regulatory watchdogs and cabinet departments.

DOJ Files Antitrust Suit Against Google

The Department of Justice is filing an antitrust suit against Google for purportedly monopolizing search and ad markets.

The department had been looking into the tech company’s practices for more than a year. Eighty percent of U.S. search queries are conducted on search channels the tech firms owns or manages per the agency, as noted in the report.

Furthermore, attorneys general from multiple states are also intending to roll out a probe into Google.

Regulator: Japan Can Investigate Business Combination Involving Fitbit

The antitrust regulator in Japan can start an investigation into any business combination or partnership involving Fitbit if their scope is sufficiently large, Fair Trade Commission (FTC) Chairman Kazuyuki Furuya recently indicated, Reuters

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Google’s latest Pixel smartphones: excellent camera and a decent price, but not as exciting as competitors

Google’s latest Pixel smartphones ditch the fancy frills. There aren’t a bunch of features you’ll never use, but a solid camera and price tags that are more manageable than your typical flagship phone.

Follow Tech Reporter Rich DeMuro on Instagram for more tech news, tips and gadgets!

I checked out both the Pixel 4a 5G and the Pixel 5 5G. These phones are similar, but there are some differences to know about. For starters, both phones have the same processor: it’s not top of the line, but it’s fine for everyday tasks. Still, it’s not as high powered as what you find on the latest Samsungs and iPhones. I noticed a bit of hesitation here and there with various tasks.

Pixel 5 has water resistance and wireless charging, two features that are absent on the 4a. Otherwise, both phones come standard with 128 gigabytes of storage and there is no

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