fnc/tech

Elon Musk calls diver who helped save Thailand boys a ‘pedo’ for slamming his rescue idea

Tesla CEO Elon Musk in June.  (AP Photo/Kiichiro Sato, File) Tech billionaire Elon Musk sent a viral shockwave Sunday in a tweet apparently accusing a British diver who helped rescue the 12 boys from a Thailand cave of being a pedophile. Musk later reportedly doubled down on the unfounded claim, telling another Twitter user he’d bet money it was “true.” The war of words began after Vern Unsworth told CNN that he thought Musk’s attempts to help out with the rescue of the youth soccer team represented nothing but a show for attention. “It just had absolutely no chance of working. He had no conception of what the cave passage was like. The submarine I believe was about 5 feet, 6 inches long, rigid, so it wouldn’t have gone round corners or round any obstacles,” Unsworth said. “It wouldn...

iPhone 9 rumor roundup: Everything we know so far

A attendee uses a new iPhone X during a presentation for the media in Beijing, China October 31, 2017. REUTERS/Thomas Peter – RC1BB5A3BB10 The expected launch of the newest iPhones is just around the corner. If history is anything to go by, Apple will announce at least three new models come September, and we have some ideas about what to expect. For starters, it’s not entirely clear what the new naming convention will be. Last year, the iPhone 8 was the “entry level” model, while the iPhone 8 Plus sported a high-resolution, 5.5-inch screen, beefier specs, and a dual sensor setup. But what stole the show was the iPhone X, named so for the iPhone’s tenth anniversary, a top-tier version with an OLED display, nearly bezeless design, and the infamous notch, which h...

Apple will discontinue iPhone SE and iPhone X, report says

Apple is turning its back on the iPhone X and iPhone SE, according to analysts. (Credit: REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage) Apple is turning its back on the iPhone X and iPhone SE, according to analysts. In a note to investors this week, BlueFin Research analysts said that Apple will discontinue the iPhone SE and iPhone X this year to address “pent-up demand” for upcoming iPhones. The analysts called Apple’s upcoming handsets the iPhone 9, iPhone 11, and iPhone 11 Plus.  (iPhone SE Credit: Apple) The strong demand for this year’s handsets is due in large part to the “lack of upgrade activity over the past few years,” according to Barron’s, which earlier cited the investor note. MORE: iPhone Rumors: New iPhone X, iPhone 9 and More More From Tom’s Guide...

Stop robocalls, free TV, anonymous browsing and more: Tech Q&A

File photo.  (REUTERS/Kacper Pempel ) Robocall Reboot Q: I am so tired of robocalls. Is there any way to stop them for good? A: The robocall is like the mosquito of telecommunications, bugging us to the point of madness. So why do companies (and criminals) still cling to such an obnoxious method? Well, it works. Enough people still relent or refuse to hang up, or even hand over their credit card numbers that the masterminds behind robocalls would be crazy to give up their racket. But you don’t have to endure it anymore because there are several ways to end robocalls for good. Tap or click here for seven ways to stop robocalls. More on this… Rabbit Ears TV Q: I was thinking about getting a television antenna to pick up local channels for free. How do I know how many channels are...

North Carolina mom warns of popular ‘Roblox’ video game after 7-year-old’s avatar ‘violently gang raped’

A North Carolina mom is sharing a story about the popular game Roblox.  (Roblox) Amber Petersen was lounging in bed with her 7-year-old daughter last week, watching her play the popular children’s video game “Roblox” on her iPad when she saw a disturbing display on the screen. Her confused daughter, Brooklyn, paused and showed her mom the screen, which Petersen says showed a female avatar — her daughter’s character — being “violently gang raped” on a virtual playground by two male avatars. “Words cannot describe the shock, disgust, and guilt that I am feeling right now, but I’m trying to put those feelings aside so I can get this warning out to others as soon as possible,” Petersen wrote in a Facebook post. The post had been shared more than ...

Quiz app on Facebook accidentally exposes data of 120M users

Close up on a key and padlock lying on a red binary code surface. The padlock is unlocked and displays a glowing grid.  (This content is subject to copyright.) A quiz app on Facebook that can tell you which Disney princess you are has also been leaking the personal information of its 120 million users. The quiz app from Nametests.com was apparently storing the personal information of its users in a rather careless way; the data was circulating through a public Javascript file that other websites could theoretically access. “I was shocked to see that this data was publicly available to any third-party that requested it,” said Inti De Ceukelaire, the Belgian security researcher who discovered the data leak. On Wednesday, he published a blog post, describing how the Ja...

Anonymous browsing, converting slides, mosquito repelling apps and more: Tech Q&A

File photo.  (REUTERS/Kacper Pempel ) Protect Privacy Q: I value my privacy. I hate all the tracking that happens online. Is there any way I can stop it for good? A: In many ways, I’m glad that major digital crimes have grabbed so many headlines the past few years – not because I want people to face-off with hackers or lose their banking information, but because so many people are finally taking cyber security seriously. Even your browser and search engine may seem to be conspiring against you, announcing your IP address to anyone with access. It’s frustrating and frightening, and luckily, you don’t have to endure that exposure anymore. Click here to get the ways that pros increase their privacy online. More on this… Be Invisible Q: Whenever I Google something, I see ads for that sea...

This speedy genetic tool might soon let scientists create new genes ‘overnight’

blue double helix models on background  (from2015) Two graduate students developed a method for synthesizing DNA that could make it much faster, cheaper and easier for biologists to create synthetic DNA sequences. Right now, if you want to create a new gene — maybe to make a tomato plant more bug resistant or to add a modification to your army of supersoldier goats — the process is slow and expensive. Bases, the building blocks of genetic code, get added one at a time to a growing strand of DNA. The process sometimes fails, and it always runs out of juice once a sequence reaches just 200 bases (a very short patch of code in genetic terms), according to a statement from the researchers. Want to go longer? Better to write lots of different bits of genetic code and then stitch them all togeth...

Online banks, Instant Pot remote cooking, tech freebies and more: Tech Q&A

(Credit: iStock)  (Anchiy) Best Online Banks Q: I never physically go to the bank anymore. I was thinking about moving my checking and savings accounts to an online bank. Are they FDIC insured? Do they pay better rates? A: Yes, going to the bank has become rarer these days, just like spending an afternoon at the mall. For most practical purposes, an online bank can function just as well as, and you never have to wait in line. But you’re right: you want to make sure the bank is reputable and secure – and you’ll want the best rates you can get. Click here for the top 10 best online banks. More on this… Instant Pot App Q: I love my Instant Pot. Can I see how it is cooking things and get updates on my smartphone? A: There are plenty of “o-matics” out there, gadgets that claim to make you...

12 incredibly useful travel apps you didn’t know about until now

(Credit: iStock) Have smartphone, will travel. Nowadays, your phone may operate in many different countries, or you can easily stick a SIM card into the slot and pick up a local data plan. Another option is to keep your phone off and only use Wi-Fi whenever you find it. In short, your phone is still useful when you travel, and you can access your apps in seaports and souks around the globe. Many apps are designed to enhance the travel experience – to help you navigate, dine, pack, plan, and photograph your far-flung adventure. Other apps are wildly imaginative, adding layers to your journey that you never even imagined. Here are 12 of my personal favorites this year. More on this… 1. Get help with flight delays Visiting a major airport can be a miserable experience. You wade through ...

Google under fire for listing ‘Nazism’ as the ideology of the California Republican Party

Google came under fire on Thursday after an error in its Knowledge Panel listed “Nazism” as the ideology of the California Republican Party. The error, which was first spotted by political strategist Eric Wilson, showed  “Nazism” alongside other ideologies such as “Conservatism,” “Market liberalism,” “Fiscal conservatism,” and “Green conservatism.” The error showed up in Google’s Knowledge Panel, which pulls information from various sources from across the web, including Wikipedia. FACEBOOK AND GOOGLE SLAMMED, ACCUSED OF BREAKING NEW GDPR PRIVACY LAW “Google should apologize for labeling Republicans nazis,” Wilson tweeted. Wilson is the founder of LearnTestOptimize, which describes itself as “a community platform for professionals worki...

Will Amazon’s facial-recognition tech enable mass surveillance?

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos laughs as he talks to the media while touring the new Amazon Spheres during the grand opening at Amazon’s Seattle headquarters in Seattle, Washington, U.S., January 29, 2018. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson – RC1DD03FA240 Amazon has been selling a facial-recognition system to police, sparking fears that the technology will one day power mass surveillance. On Tuesday, the American Civil Liberties Union and 35 other advocacy group sent a letter to the company’s CEO Jeff Bezos, demanding that he stop providing the technology to law enforcement. The technology, called Amazon Rekognition, can identify people’s faces in digital images and video. Police in Oregon and Florida have been using the system to help them solve crimes, but the ACLU argues ...