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Pixel Camera App To Support External Mics Soon – Ubergizmo

Ubergizmo Pixel Camera App To Support External Mics Soon Ubergizmo Google's Pixel smartphones don't support external microphones in the default camera app. This omission has irked many users who have picked up a Pixel handset precisely for its camera abilities. Google has heard the voice of its users and confirmed ... and more »

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International growth, primarily in China, fuels the VC market today

The venture capital business model has gone global. VC is still an exclusive club of financiers, but now with worldwide scope and scale. According to Crunchbase projections Crunchbase News reported in Q3 2018, worldwide VC deal and dollar volume each  set new all-time records . In the U.S. and Canada, deal volume declined slightly from Q2 highs but  growing deal sizes pushed total dollar volume to new heights . Much of this global growth comes from markets outside the U.S. and Canada. A  recent collaborative study  between Startup Revolution and the Center for American Entrepreneurship indicates that Beijing, China was the city that contributed most to global growth in venture capital investment growth. Here’s the geographic breakdown of projected deal volume over time. Note a somewhat choppy growth pattern in U.S. and Canadian deal volume, and compare that to a more consistent growth pattern in international deal volume.

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Gillmor Gang:

The Gillmor Gang — Keith Teare, Esteban Kolsky, Frank Radice, Michael Markman, and Steve Gillmor . Recorded live Friday October 12, 2018. Smartspeaker UI, Post-Advertising micropayments, and other mythical creatures. Produced and directed by Tina Chase Gillmor @tinagillmor @kteare, @ekolsky, @fradice, @mickeleh, @stevegillmor Liner Notes Live chat stream The Gillmor Gang on Facebook

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Venmo bumps up instant transfer fee to 1 percent of the total amount

If you’re a frequent Venmo user, you might want to double-check your settings because the company just changed up their fee structure for instant transfers and it may result in more of your balance slipping away. The fee for instant transfers where a user would move their Venmo balance to their bank account via debit card used to be just $0.25, but the company shared in an email to users late Friday that the fee is increasing to 1 percent of the transferred amount with the company taking at least a $0.25 fee. So, basically, if you’re transferring any more than $25 in the future via this method, you’re going to end up paying Venmo more thanks to this new fee structure. A PayPal spokesperson tells TechCrunch, in part, that “The change reflects the value that Venmo’s services offer – providing speed and convenience for customers that want to transfer their funds to their bank accounts in 30 minutes or less.” For people using Venmo as a way to process big payments quickly or get some much needed cash into their account, this is a bummer that can result in more getting scraped away by fees. Additionally, if you were trying to avoid connecting your bank account details specifically, you now have another reason pushing you to do so. Instant transfers works for users trying to quickly move their balance to their bank account in less than a half hour via a debit card. Importantly, if you’re just using the standard bank transfer there still aren’t any fees you have to worry about, it’s still free… for now.

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Snapchat now has cat lenses. (Yes, for your cat.)

It’s 8:00 PM on Friday night and you’re home alone and already drunk. Oh, is that just me? Well no matter. Snapchat has made lenses for your cat now. Yes, that’s right. Your cat! This is what the internet is made for, friends. Not all that fake news and trolling. Not having to read tweets where people use words like “woke” unironically. Cat lenses!  So technically, I guess, Snapchat added the ability to recognize things in your photos last November , like food, sports, and even pets, then suggest appropriate filters – like a sticker that says “IT’S A PAWTY” above a photo of a dog. But now you can put a set of matching glasses on yourself and your cat. Or give you and your cat rainbow unicorn horns. Or give Mr

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AllTrails gets $75M to keep hikers happy

The app for hiking enthusiasts just secured a big round of capital that will help it map more trails worldwide. AllTrails  has raised $75 million, led by Spectrum Equity, which has taken a majority stake in the company in the process. Founded in 2010, AllTrails raised a small amount of capital years ago from investors, including 2020 Ventures and 500 Startups. It was also part of  AngelPad’s inaugural  accelerator class. This is its first sizeable round of equity financing. AllTrails provides what it calls an “outdoors platform” that includes crowdsourced reviews of trails from its community of 9 million avid hikers, mountain bikers and trail runners in more than 100 countries. It also provides detailed trail maps and other content tailor-made for outdoorsy folk. The company says its app has been downloaded more than 12 million times. Gear for making outdoor fitness more enjoyable AllTrails was founded by Russell Cook , who has since left to launch another fitness tech startup called FitOn. The company is now led by  Jade Van Doren , who joined as CEO in September 2015. “I grew up camping in the Sierras with my grandfather and backpacking up there,” Cook told TechCrunch. “I looked around the space and it felt like there was a lot of room to build something meaningful that would help people find places to get outdoors and feel safe once they are out there.” “I got really excited about doing that and we’ve made a lot of progress toward those goals,” he added.

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At 10 trillion frames per second, this camera captures light in slow motion

Light is the fastest thing in the universe, so trying to catch it on the move is necessarily something of a challenge. We’ve had some success, but a new rig built by Caltech scientists pulls down a mind-boggling 10 trillion frames per second , meaning it can capture light as it travels along — and they have plans to make it a hundred times faster. Understanding how light moves is fundamental to many fields, so it isn’t just idle curiosity driving the efforts of Jinyang Liang and his colleagues — not that there’d be anything wrong with that either. But there are potential applications in physics, engineering, and medicine that depend heavily on the behavior of light at scales so small, and so short, that they are at the very limit of what can be measured. You may have heard about billion- and trillion-FPS cameras in the past, but those were likely “streak cameras” that do a bit of cheating to achieve those numbers. A light pulse as captured by the T-CUP system. If a pulse of light can be replicated perfectly, then you could send one every millisecond but offset the camera’s capture time by an even smaller fraction, like a handful of femtoseconds (a billion times shorter). You’d capture one pulse when it was here, the next one when it was a little further, the next one when it was even further, and so on. The end result is a movie that’s indistinguishable in many ways from if you’d captured that first pulse at high speed. This is highly effective — but you can’t always count on being able to produce a pulse of light a million times the exact same way. Perhaps you need to see what happens when it passes through a carefully engineered laser-etched lens that will be altered by the first pulse that strikes it. In cases like that, you need to capture that first pulse in real time — which means recording images not just with femtosecond precision, but only femtoseconds apart . Simple, right?

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New wave founders are headed to Startup Battlefield Latin America

TechCrunch is thrilled to announce that Rappi co-founder Sebastian Mejia, Enjoie founder Ana McLaren and Konfío founder and CEO David Arana will be joining us on stage at Startup Battlefield Latin America  for a panel about new wave startups coming out of the region. What does scaling a delivery startup out of Latin America look like? Where do you find the top engineering talent to build a marketplace app? What are the big opportunities for ecommerce and fintech companies? These are some of the ideas these three founders will speak to. Sebastián Mejia is a co-founder of Rappi, the on-demand delivery startup worth over $1 billion. Rappi initially began as a beverage delivery service, but has since expanded into groceries, meals, medicine and tech products to become a solution for last-mile delivery on demand. The company also has a popular cash withdrawl feature, and charges $1 per delivery. The Colombian startup has been backed by some of the world’s most prominent investors like Sequoia and Andreessen Horowitz. In fact, Rappi marked A16z’s first investment into Latin America in 2016. Now, thanks to a huge $200M round that closed in September 2018 , Rappi is now worth over $1 billion

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Facebook breach saw 15M users’ names & contact info stolen, 14M’s bios too

Facebook has now detailed what data was scraped and stolen in the breach it revealed two weeks ago . 30 million users, not 50 million as it initially estimated, had their access tokens stolen by hackers. Users can check Facebook’s Help Center to find out if their information was accessed, and Facebook will send customized alerts to those impacted detailing what was accessed from their account and what they can do to recover. It’s currently not clear if all the information accessed was necessarily scraped. Facebook’s VP of product managment Guy Rosen told reporters on a press call that “We are cooperating with the FBI on this matter” and that “the FBI have asked us not to discuss who may be behind this attack” as its own investigation is ongoing. Disclosing anything about perpetrator now could cause them to cover tracks. 15 million of the 30 million users had their name plus phone number and/or email accessed. 14 million had that info plus potentially more biographical info accessed, including “username, gender, locale/language, relationship status, religion, hometown, self-reported current city, birthdate, device types used to access Facebook, education, work, the last 10 places they checked into or were tagged in, website, people or Pages they follow, and the 15 most recent searches”. The remaining 1 million users’ information wasn’t accessed. Facebook’s other apps including Messenger, Messenger Kids, Instagram, WhatsApp, Workplace, and Pages, as well as its features for payments, third-party apps, advertisers, and developers were not accessed. Facebook says that law enforcement has asked it not to discuss evidence regarding who committed the attack as the FBI continues its investigation. Facebook says the breach started when hackers with some access tokens exploited a combination of three bugs related to its “View As” privacy feature for seeing your profile from the perspective of someone else. This let them gain access to those accounts’ friends leading them to steal access tokens 400,000 accounts, and used a different method to then grab tokens from 30 million of their friends. Unlike most breaches, this one appears to have turned out to be less severe then initially expected. Users seem to already be forgetting about the breach after a short hiccup where they had to log back in to Facebook.

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Want to reduce fraud? Make a better password, dummy!

Researchers at Indiana University have confirmed that stringent password policies – aside from being really annoying – actually work. The research , led by Ph.D. student Jacob Abbott, IU CIO Daniel Calarco, and professor L. Jean Camp. They published their findings in a paper entitled “Factors Influencing Password Reuse: A Case Study.” “Our paper shows that passphrase requirements such as a 15-character minimum length deter the vast majority of IU users (99.98 percent) from reusing passwords or passphrases on other sites,” said Abbott. “Other universities with fewer password requirements had reuse rates potentially as high as 40 percent.” To investigate the impact of policy on password reuse, the study analyzed password policies from 22 different U.S. universities, including their home institution, IU. Next, they extracted sets of emails and passwords from two large data sets that were published online and contained over 1.3 billion email addresses and password combinations. Based on email addresses belonging to a university’s domain, passwords were compiled and compared against a university’s official password policy. The findings were clear: Stringent password rules significantly lower a university’s risk of personal data breaches. In short, requiring longer passwords and creating a truly stringent password policy reduced fraud and password reuse by almost 99%. Further, the researchers found that preventing users from adding their name or username inside passwords its also pretty helpful

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Facebook’s gaming hub Fb.gg launches into beta on Android

This summer, Facebook launched Fb.gg , its online gaming hub and Twitch competitor, designed to attract game streamers and their fans to watch videos on Facebook instead of on rival sites. The destination shows videos based on which games and streaming celebrities users follow, plus Liked Pages and Groups, and other featured suggestions of what to watch. Now, Fb.gg is expanding to mobile with its launch on Android. The new app, first spotted by Sensor Tower, arrived just a few days ago and is currently in beta testing. According to its description on Google Play, the app allows gamers and fans to discover a “universe of gaming content,” connect with creators and join communities, and play instant games like Everwing, Words with Friends, Basketball FRVR, and others. From the screenshots, you can see how the Fb.gg app lets users tap navigation buttons at the top to find streamers to watch, or to view those streamers they’re already following, among other things. They can also participate in live conversations during gameplay with other viewers. Here, they can react to the stream using Facebook’s standard emoticon set of likes, hearts, haha’s and others. Another section lets gamers jump into simple and popular mobile games. These titles are among those who were early participants in Facebook’s other gaming efforts in the past, like Instant Games on Facebook and Messenger. Facebook has been trying to woo the gaming community for some time, to better compete against Amazon’s Twitch and Google’s YouTube. There’s a large and growing market for game streaming and viewing, with young viewers tuning in an average of 3+ hours a week to watch, as TechCrunch previously noted. Facebook’s efforts to directly challenge Twitch and others kicked off in earnest this year, with the launch of its own version of Twitch’s Partner Program

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