Tagged With alphabet

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In the wake of the bloody white supremacist demonstration in Charlottesville last month, tech companies decided to finally enforce their policies, pushing back against the rise of extremism online. One service caught in the crackdown was the "free speech" social network Gab, which was booted from Google's Play Store, and now the Twitter knockoff is suing for what it claims is "a straightforward violation of the antitrust laws".

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Politicians on both sides of the aisle are starting to wake up to the enormous power that tech companies wield, and there's a growing sentiment that something needs to be done about it. But giants such as Google are extending their moneyed tentacles in all the right places to ensure silence in Washington, and they're outpacing oil companies as the most influential corporate spenders.

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Things have been looking bleak at Google Fiber for a while now. The burgeoning internet service provider lost one chief executive late last year, and this week, it lost another one. Greg McCray, who took the helm of Google Fiber only five months ago, just stepped down. The reasons why are unclear, but they appear to be embarrassing on a number of fronts.

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Three years after acquiring the MIT robotics lab Boston Dynamics, makers of Atlas and other scary bots, Alphabet (Google's parent company) is selling it off to Softbank, a Japanese telecommunications company already known for its less terrifying robots such as Pepper that might soon be getting some impressive upgrades. It turns out that posting YouTube videos of nightmare-inducing robots isn't as profitable as once hoped.

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A lot of people get fired from Uber. One employee was reportedly fired last year for helping his female coworkers raise complaints about sexual harassment. Drivers get deactivated from the platform if their ratings slip below a certain number (Uber says the minimum rating varies by city, but driver forums say dipping below a 4.6 out of 5 is enough for deactivation). Even executives sometimes get axed -- Uber senior vice president of engineering Amit Singhal was asked to resign after sexual harassment allegations against him at a former job became public.

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Last night, Waymo, the self-driving car division of Alphabet -- parent company to Google -- filed a blockbuster lawsuit against Uber. The suit alleges that a former Google engineer stole trade secrets and proprietary designs of Waymo's self-driving car system, which he subsequently used when starting his own company that was later acquired by Uber in 2016.

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Google announced Tuesday that it is "pausing" its Fiber operations in ten cities. Google Fiber will remain in cities that Google has already laid the infrastructure for, but Alphabet is putting a halt on future development. Google will also be laying off nine per cent of its Fiber team, according to Ars Technica. The CEO of Google Access, Craig Barratt, is also stepping down.

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Hearing the alphabet through movie scenes is totally dumb and silly but also loads of stupid fun. Burger Fiction took scenes from 85 different movies and stitched them together to spit out all 26 letters, and it's almost captivating, in a "damn, they're really going to be able to get every letter" sort of way.