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Latest by Lulu Chang

Ford autonomous car

Ford’s self-driving vehicle division is set to go — autonomous

Ford is getting serious about its self-driving car unit, and has spun out its autonomous car division into its own company. Ford Autonomous Vehicles LLC now encompasses "all aspects of its self-driving vehicle business operations, to accelerate its AV business and capitalize on market opportunities."
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Uber has completed 10 billion trips since 2010 despite persistent controversy

As of last month, Uber has completed over 10 billion trips. And given that the company only got its start in 2010, that's a pretty impressive milestone. Uber reached that mark despite being embroiled in a series of controversies, including a leadership shake-up, during the past year.
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Italian researchers discover what they believe is a lake under ice cap on Mars

Scientists have discovered what is believed to be a lake located underneath the south polar ice cap of Mars, measuring about 12.5 miles across. While researchers previously found signs that water once flowed across the planet's surface, this is the first time that a persistent, existing body of water has been found.
spacex block 5

SpaceX just landed another of its reusable Block 5 rockets

The only thing more impressive than SpaceX blastoffs may be SpaceX landings. Elon Musk's extraterrestrial-focused company has managed to land yet another rocket on a ship in the Atlantic Ocean after launching a satellite into orbit. SpaceX will be completing 3 such missions in just 2 weeks.
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A safer Twitter may be around the corner thanks to API guidelines, restrictions

Third-party developers have been able to leverage the Twitter API in order to build apps and other software that work with the social media firm. But now, those who want to access the API will have to undergo a more comprehensive vetting process in hopes of keeping out folks who may want to spam users.
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Dig out your rollerblade kneepads for Segway’s new ‘self-balancing roller shoes’

If you thought Heelys (those wheeled sneakers that every preteen in the United States used to wear) were odd, you may want to take a seat. Segway is here to prove that when it comes to strange methods of transportation, there's no one better versed -- not even Heelys. Meet the new Segway Drift W1s.
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New Steam chat system adds group chats, video, and GIF support

Valve has made its first major update to the Steam chat client in a long time and has taken big strides in modernizing the experience. New encrypted voice chat and group chat functions are welcome, but with stiff competition from the likes of Discord, you have to wonder whether it's too little too late.
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Not at Hogwarts? You can still build and use a wand thanks to Kano

You may not be able to get into Hogwarts (muggles that we all are), but you can still build your own wand. After all, who needs Ollivander and his wands when you have the new Harry Potter Kano Coding Kit? The first-ever Harry Potter STEM project, this coding kit is the latest offering from Kano.
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Google Street View gives woman a special gift — an image of her late mother

A former Florida woman hoping for a little piece of home got it. Thanks to modern technology and infrequently updated Street View imagery, when Denise Underhill decided to check out her mother's old home using the mapping  service, she saw not just her mother's house, but her mother as well. 
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Soliom’s solar-powered smart doorbell is a breeze to install

Turning your home into a smart home shouldn't make you feel dumb. At least, that's what the team behind Soliom believes. The wireless doorbell maker hopes to differentiate itself from the oodles of other connected devices on the market by being particularly user-friendly, with a one-step installation process.
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PayPal no longer the only payment system for eBay – Apple Pay is coming soon

PayPal no longer has a monopoly on eBay payment systems. The online retailer is exploring other options, and soon, you'll be able to buy home appliances, clothes, or even cars on eBay using Apple Pay. Previously, eBay revealed that it would be managing the end-to-end payments flow on its own platform.
fda approves impossible burger

That bleeding vegetarian burger from Impossible Foods is now FDA-approved

Impossible Foods created a vegetarian burger that "bleeds" just like a real, juicy, half-pounder does, and now, the FDA has decided that it's 100-percent safe. This week, the FDA determined that the key ingredient in Impossible Foods' veggie burger poses no risk to our health.
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Buckle up, Houston, you’ll soon be getting 5G service from Verizon

Everything is bigger in Texas, and now, everything might be faster, too. That's right friends, 5G is coming to Houston, and it's all thanks to Verizon. On Tuesday, the mobile service provider announced that it will be bringing 5G technology to the Texas metropolis in the second half of 2018.

Finally, you can get Google Assistant to make a Duo video call for you

Making a video call from your phone is getting a little easier thanks to some help from your favorite assistant -- that is to say, Google Assistant. At long last, Google's A.I.-powered helper will allow you to start a video call on Duo, its video calling service. The feature has been missing for quite some time.
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How clean is your favorite restaurant? Yelp’s hygiene scores will dish the dirt

Sure, the ambiance, the food, and the service can all make or break the quality of a restaurant, but does any of that mean anything if it's unclean? Sanitation experts certainly don't think so, and now, Yelp is providing hygiene scores to help you ensure that your delicious dinner stays in your stomach.
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These tiny pieces of ‘fruit’ from Chipolo keep tabs on your belongings

Chipolo has introduced a new accessory for the summer, and it's not a handbag or a bathing suit -- it's a Bluetooth tracker. And while these little devices are aesthetically pleasing, they're more than just something to look at. Rather, they're here to help prevent you from looking for your lost property. 

Goldfish, Ritz crackers, and Swiss Rolls are being recalled over salmonella scare

You're probably not going to be smiling at the snack that smiles back after this news. Pepperidge Farm, has announced that one of its ingredient suppliers notified the company that whey powder in a seasoning used in four types of the cracker has been recalled due to a potential presence of salmonella.

Motiv smart ring tracks ‘active minutes,’ because step counters are so 2015

The Motiv Ring is a $200 ring that tracks your active minutes with a heart rate monitor. After months of delays, it's finally available. And a few months later, its Android app, which had been in beta for several months, is publicly available too, offering all the same features as the original iOS app.
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Reprogrammable Braille could capture the Harry Potter series in a few pages

Why carry around a tome when you can carry around just a few pages? That seems to have been the question that launched the latest innovation in Braille, which could reduce the size and weight of books for the visually impaired. Researchers at Harvard have created a so-called reprogrammable Braille.
amazon echo in the dark

‘Alexa, turn up the bass’ is now a real command thanks to a new EQ feature

You're getting a bit more control over Alexa thanks to iYou're getting more control over Alexa thanks to its newest feature, which introduces the ability to adjust EQ settings with naught but your voice. The feature lets you say, "Alexa, increase the treble," and soon, "Alexa, pump up the bass."
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The longest lunar eclipse in 100 years happens this Friday, but there’s a catch

Get out your binoculars and your passports  -- that is, if you want to catch the longest total lunar eclipse of our lifetimes. Well, at least, of the century. On Friday, the celestial event will turn the moon from its normal pearly white into a beguiling red orange for more than 100 minutes
Amazon Echo Show

Tap to Alexa makes it easier for deaf community to interact with Amazon assistant

Amazon Echo Show users will now find a new Tap to Alexa option, and as its name suggests, it'll allow users to touch the Show's screen and add customized shortcuts to some of the most useful information Alexa provides, including the weather forecast, news headlines, timers, and more.
Tesla Model 3

As Tesla asks for money back from suppliers, investors go running

Tesla may be ramping up its production schedule for the Model 3, but it's apparently coming with pretty serious costs. As per a Wall Street Journal report, Elon Musk's car company asked suppliers for cash back. Tesla sent a memo to a supplier that requested a "meaningful amount of money" to be returned.

Miss Prime Day? This Instant Pot is still on sale for super cheap

Amazon Prime Day 2018 may be over, but the deals certainly are not. If you thought Prime Day was your one and only chance to grab some seriously discounted smart home accessories, think again. Walmart and Amazon have now discounted the Instant Pot LUX60 V3 6 Qt 6-in-1 pressure cooker to just $49.
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Miele’s meal kit shows you how to microwave dinner in the 21st century

Last year, we introduced you to Miele's Dialog Oven, a unique appliance that relies upon electromagnetic waves in order to cook food more precisely than a conventional oven or a microwave. And now, 12 months later, Miele is back with its latest offering -- meals that are meant to be made in the Dialog. 
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More than just fried chicken, Chick-fil-A launches a meal kit service

Has hell frozen over, or is this actually heaven? In a move that shows exactly how far the meal kit revolution has really gone, Chick-fil-A has now launched its very own answer to Blue Apron, Plated, and the like. That's right, friends -- your favorite chicken sandwich purveyor isn't just serving you fast food.
the macallan 4d tour

You can go to Scotland to experience The Macallan – or just grab your VR headset

Can't make it to Scotland to take a tour of The Macallan Distillery? There's no need to fret, because as it turns out, you don't even need to leave your living room to get a similar (albeit slightly less buzz-worthy) experience. The Macallan is bringing its Scottish distillery to folks in the Big Apple and worldwide.
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Meet your new best friend: Barsys, the robotic bartender

The hottest cocktail bar in your neighborhood may just be sitting on your countertop. Meet Barsys, otherwise known as your new best friend. The robot bartender promises to pour perfectly crafted drinks, dictated by the user-friendly companion mobile app (available on both Android and iOS).
snapchat shuts down snapcash

You hardly knew Snapcash, Snapchat’s payment service, and now it’s saying goodbye

Snapchat's woes show no sign of ending, and the latest casualty in the company is Snapcash, the peer-to-peer payment service. It's likely that you've never heard of -- much less used -- the service, which makes its shuttering less of a surprise. That's because Snapcash wasn't always used innocently.

Google’s $5.1 billion antitrust fine could mean the end of free Android

The European Commission has fined Google a record breaking $5.1 billion over anti-trust issues related to the search engine giant's handling of the Android ecosystem. But while the fine is still small beans to Google, it's the EU's continued attention that could be making the company nervous.

Snapchat’s visual search tool could take you shopping, but not on Amazon

Shopping and Snapchat could soon be synonymous. As originally reported by TechCrunch, the popular social media platform is experimenting with a new visual search feature called "Eagle." App researcher Ishan Agarwal was the first to notice the Snapchat code in the Android version of the app.

Boeing suffers setback in space taxi testing

NASA's contract with Soyuz expires next year, and the agency wants to accelerate the timeline to certify private companies to transport astronauts to and from the International Space Station. However, a recent anomaly in a test may push timelines back by quite a bit, much to the company's chagrin.
An Internet speed test.

Google to run a 4,000-mile cable between Virginia and France

There will soon be a cable connecting France and Virginia, and it's all in the name of providing better internet service. In a statement this week, Google announced that it would be constructing an undersea, transatlantic cable that will have one end in Virginia Beach, and will span 4,000 miles across the ocean.
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Uber drivers could soon be considered Uber employees, and that could get expensive

Uber drivers may finally be recognized as official Uber employees. Officials in New York have ultimately ruled in favor of three former Uber drivers who filed a federal complaint against the transportation giant when their unemployment insurance claim was not accepted and approved. This led to a two-year standoff.