Facebook has a theory that hiding ‘likes’ will increase post volume, and Instagram is testing that theory

More posts means users spend more time on Instagram, and therefore grows the company’s ability to show more ads. Instagram is now valued by analysts at more than $100 billion, or about one-fifth of Facebook’s total market cap. Once the primary currency of social media posts, “likes” on Instagram may soon be a thing of the past. But Facebook’s own research suggests hiding like counts could also increase the number of posts Instagram users make. Facebook has always done research on likes, but the


More posts means users spend more time on Instagram, and therefore grows the company’s ability to show more ads.
Instagram is now valued by analysts at more than $100 billion, or about one-fifth of Facebook’s total market cap.
Once the primary currency of social media posts, “likes” on Instagram may soon be a thing of the past.
But Facebook’s own research suggests hiding like counts could also increase the number of posts Instagram users make.
Facebook has always done research on likes, but the
Facebook has a theory that hiding ‘likes’ will increase post volume, and Instagram is testing that theory Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-12-06  Authors: salvador rodriguez
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, increase, social, instagram, testing, content, bit, post, facebook, volume, hiding, posts, facebooks, mosseri, users, counts, likes, theory


Facebook has a theory that hiding 'likes' will increase post volume, and Instagram is testing that theory

More posts means users spend more time on Instagram, and therefore grows the company’s ability to show more ads. Instagram is a critical part of Facebook’s future. It is the most popular social app among teens , and it has more than 1 billion monthly users. That includes 500 million daily users of the Stories feature that was introduced in 2016 to compete against a popular feature of the same name from Snapchat . Instagram is now valued by analysts at more than $100 billion, or about one-fifth of Facebook’s total market cap.

But the motivation goes beyond that. There’s also a hypothesis within the company that hiding likes will increase the number of posts people make to the service, by making them feel less self-conscious when their posts don’t get much engagement, three former employees told CNBC. These people asked for anonymity because they are not authorized to discuss internal strategy at the company.

Facebook , which owns Instagram, has touted its recent move to hide likes on user posts as an effort to reduce bullying on the popular social app.

Once the primary currency of social media posts, “likes” on Instagram may soon be a thing of the past.

Ever since Facebook announced the experiment to remove like counts in April, Instagram chief Adam Mosseri has linked it to the social network’s anti-cyberbullying efforts.

“It’s because we want people to worry a little bit less about how many likes they’re getting on Instagram and spend a bit more time connecting with the people they care about,” Mosseri said at Facebook’s F8 conference for developers in April. The next slide in the presentation included the words, “Leading the fight against online bullying.”

Mosseri returned to the idea

andagain. At a Wired conference in October, he said, “The idea is to try and depressurize Instagram, to make it less of a competition, give people more space to focus on connecting with the people they love and the things that inspire them.”

But Facebook’s own research suggests hiding like counts could also increase the number of posts Instagram users make.

In recent years, as Instagram content became more polished and saturated with content from professional influencers, whom advertisers pay to promote particular products, the platform began to see more users delete or archive their original posts — especially posts that did not receive many likes, one of the former employees said.

Facebook’s growth and data science teams developed a hypothesis that getting rid of likes would make users feel less self-conscious when their posts don’t receive much engagement, spurring them to post more.

Facebook has always done research on likes, but the company began specifically experimenting with the idea of removing Instagram like counts in 2018, the people said. The experiment began as part of Instagram’s wellness project before Mosseri took charge of the social network in October 2018, one of the sources said, but Mosseri has prioritized it. “I’ve been spending a lot of time on this personally,” he said this October.

Under the changes, users will no longer be able to compare their posts’ like counts to their peers, but they’ll still receive a notification for each individual like. Those notifications could serve as an additional catalyst to get users to post more often.

In addition, people on Instagram tend to mimic the behaviors of their close friends and family, so getting a few users to start posting original content more frequently could create a viral effect, the former employees told CNBC.

Mosseri once briefly acknowledged removing likes could increase engagement, tweeting “It’ll likely effect [sic] how much some people engage on Instagram, probably liking a bit less and posting a bit more…”

Outside experts agree the hypothesis has merit.

Removing likes takes away the peer pressure average users feel to post content that is as perfect as their most social-media savvy friend, a professional influencer or a celebrity, said Dylan Farella, director of social media at Talent Resources, a New York influencer marketing firm.

“There will be nothing discouraging them from posting more,” Farella said.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-12-06  Authors: salvador rodriguez
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, increase, social, instagram, testing, content, bit, post, facebook, volume, hiding, posts, facebooks, mosseri, users, counts, likes, theory


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Amazon, UPS and DHL are testing cargo bikes in New York City

New York City is testing a pilot program that would take some deliveries out of the hands of drivers in cars and vans and put them on bikes. UPS, Amazon and DHL are taking part in the Commercial Cargo Bike Pilot Program, which launches Wednesday using bikes with large containers attached. The New York City Department of Transportation said their goal is to have 100 cargo bikes in the pilot. She noted that trucks have been involved in a disproportionately high number of cyclist fatalities in the


New York City is testing a pilot program that would take some deliveries out of the hands of drivers in cars and vans and put them on bikes.
UPS, Amazon and DHL are taking part in the Commercial Cargo Bike Pilot Program, which launches Wednesday using bikes with large containers attached.
The New York City Department of Transportation said their goal is to have 100 cargo bikes in the pilot.
She noted that trucks have been involved in a disproportionately high number of cyclist fatalities in the
Amazon, UPS and DHL are testing cargo bikes in New York City Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-12-04  Authors: frank holland ritika shah, frank holland, ritika shah
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, testing, plan, york, amazon, city, bikes, nyc, trucks, interested, pilot, program, dhl, ups, cargo


Amazon, UPS and DHL are testing cargo bikes in New York City

New York City is testing a pilot program that would take some deliveries out of the hands of drivers in cars and vans and put them on bikes.

UPS, Amazon and DHL are taking part in the Commercial Cargo Bike Pilot Program, which launches Wednesday using bikes with large containers attached.

The test will occur in Manhattan below 60th Street, which is the area where the city plans to implement a “congestion pricing” plan starting in 2021. Under that plan, passenger vehicles will be charged as much as $14 and commercial trucks as much as $25 to enter the area during peak commuting hours.

The New York City Department of Transportation said their goal is to have 100 cargo bikes in the pilot.

“DOT is excited to announce this pilot to make freight deliveries in NYC safer and greener by encouraging the use of pedal-assist cargo bikes instead of trucks,” said NYC DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg.

She noted that trucks have been involved in a disproportionately high number of cyclist fatalities in the city this year.

“We are especially interested in the safety benefits this pilot can bring to our streets,” Trottenberg said. “We thank UPS, DHL and Amazon for their participation and invite other interested freight companies to join and help us make this pilot a success.”


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-12-04  Authors: frank holland ritika shah, frank holland, ritika shah
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, testing, plan, york, amazon, city, bikes, nyc, trucks, interested, pilot, program, dhl, ups, cargo


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A UK bank is testing a key fob that uses your fingerprint to make payments

U.K. bank NatWest has launched a trial of a payment fob that uses biometric fingerprint technology. In an announcement Wednesday, the bank said 250 customers would take part in the pilot, which will last three months. NatWest claim the fob is no bigger than a keyring and it features a small fingerprint reader. According to U.K. Finance’s UK Payment Markets 2019 report, the number of contactless payments in 2018 hit 7.4 billion, an increase of 31% from 2017. While there is interest surrounding th


U.K. bank NatWest has launched a trial of a payment fob that uses biometric fingerprint technology.
In an announcement Wednesday, the bank said 250 customers would take part in the pilot, which will last three months.
NatWest claim the fob is no bigger than a keyring and it features a small fingerprint reader.
According to U.K. Finance’s UK Payment Markets 2019 report, the number of contactless payments in 2018 hit 7.4 billion, an increase of 31% from 2017.
While there is interest surrounding th
A UK bank is testing a key fob that uses your fingerprint to make payments Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-12-04  Authors: anmar frangoul
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, testing, key, payment, security, uses, bank, technologies, biometric, fingerprint, fob, natwest, payments


A UK bank is testing a key fob that uses your fingerprint to make payments

U.K. bank NatWest has launched a trial of a payment fob that uses biometric fingerprint technology.

In an announcement Wednesday, the bank said 250 customers would take part in the pilot, which will last three months.

The fobs work with current Chip and PIN terminals and will enable users to carry out contactless transactions of up to £100 ($130) by using their fingerprint information to verify purchases, according to NatWest.

Users upload their fingerprint details to the fob, registering their account via smartphone. NatWest claim the fob is no bigger than a keyring and it features a small fingerprint reader.

The trial of biometric fobs follows on from pilots of biometric credit and debit cards earlier in the year.

NatWest said that biometric data was encrypted on the device and would never be shared with either the merchant or bank.

Visa and Giesecke+Devrient Mobile Security have worked with NatWest to bring the technology and service to customers in the U.K.

“Our research tells us that people have a strong interest in biometric technologies which can make their lives easier as well as increasing the security of their payments,” Jeni Mundy, managing director, UK & Ireland, at Visa, said in a statement.

In the U.K., at least, the way in which people bank is changing. According to U.K. Finance’s UK Payment Markets 2019 report, the number of contactless payments in 2018 hit 7.4 billion, an increase of 31% from 2017.

While there is interest surrounding the development of biometric payment technologies, there are also concerns in some quarters, especially when it comes to privacy and security.

“Biometric payments are increasingly being adopted in markets such as Asia but have yet to see widespread uptake in the U.K.,” Saj Huq, program director of the London Office for Rapid Cybersecurity Advancement, or LORCA, said in a statement sent to CNBC via email.

“This is largely due to privacy concerns among consumers about how their personal data, such as fingerprints, is being stored,” Huq added.

He went on to state that, despite benefits to the consumer, technologies like biometrics and facial recognition were “not the panacea to fraud.”

“In fact, as quickly as they are being developed, hackers are also developing ways to subvert them – there is a whole parallel industry working hard to find ways to beat biometric security methods.”


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-12-04  Authors: anmar frangoul
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, testing, key, payment, security, uses, bank, technologies, biometric, fingerprint, fob, natwest, payments


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McDonald’s is testing a chicken sandwich

McDonald’s is entering the chicken sandwich wars. The chain is testing a Crispy Chicken Sandwich in Houston and Knoxville, Tennessee. McDonald’s franchisees have asked for a Southern-style chicken sandwich as Chick-fil-A’s threat to their business grows. But the Chicago-based chain has not tested anything similar to Chick-fil-A’s chicken sandwich since 2018, when it tested the Ultimate Chicken Sandwich in more than 160 locations in Washington state. Chick-fil-A’s chicken sandwich has helped the


McDonald’s is entering the chicken sandwich wars.
The chain is testing a Crispy Chicken Sandwich in Houston and Knoxville, Tennessee.
McDonald’s franchisees have asked for a Southern-style chicken sandwich as Chick-fil-A’s threat to their business grows.
But the Chicago-based chain has not tested anything similar to Chick-fil-A’s chicken sandwich since 2018, when it tested the Ultimate Chicken Sandwich in more than 160 locations in Washington state.
Chick-fil-A’s chicken sandwich has helped the
McDonald’s is testing a chicken sandwich Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-12-02  Authors: amelia lucas
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, sales, little, chicken, tested, chain, testing, restaurants, locations, mcdonalds, sandwich, restaurant


McDonald's is testing a chicken sandwich

McDonald’s is entering the chicken sandwich wars.

The chain is testing a Crispy Chicken Sandwich in Houston and Knoxville, Tennessee. The sandwich features a fried chicken filet served on a buttery potato roll, topped with butter and pickles. A deluxe version also includes tomatoes, lettuce and mayo.

The chain on Sunday teased the test, which will run from Dec. 2 through Jan. 26, according to a McDonald’s spokesperson.

“Houston. Knoxville. Lunch tomorrow? No beef,” the fast-food giant tweeted.

McDonald’s franchisees have asked for a Southern-style chicken sandwich as Chick-fil-A’s threat to their business grows. The board of the National Owners Association, an independent franchisee group, wrote in an email in July that a chicken sandwich should be their top priority.

McDonald’s carries Chicken McNuggets and the McChicken sandwich. This fall, it debuted the Spicy BBQ Chicken Sandwich, a limited-time offer that launched to little fanfare. But the Chicago-based chain has not tested anything similar to Chick-fil-A’s chicken sandwich since 2018, when it tested the Ultimate Chicken Sandwich in more than 160 locations in Washington state.

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, which is owned by Restaurant Brands International, has seen great success with its own take on the chicken sandwich. After selling out of the new item in a little more than two weeks in August, the sandwich returned in early November. Thanks to the launch of the sandwich, Popeyes had its best quarter in nearly two decades, reporting U.S. same-store sales growth of more than 10%.

Chick-fil-A’s chicken sandwich has helped the chain become the nation’s third-largest restaurant chain by sales, trailing only McDonald’s and Starbucks. McDonald’s has roughly 14,000 restaurants in the U.S., while Chick-fil-A operated 1,989 stand-alone restaurants and 363 “licensed units,” which are the nontraditional stadium, amusement park and university locations, by the end of 2018.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-12-02  Authors: amelia lucas
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, sales, little, chicken, tested, chain, testing, restaurants, locations, mcdonalds, sandwich, restaurant


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Self-driving cars were supposed to be here already — here’s why they aren’t and when they should arrive

Yet a truly autonomous vehicle still doesn’t exist. A Hyundai NEXO fuel cell vehicle with Aurora self-driving systems. As of October, 41 states have either enacted legislation or signed executive orders regulating the testing and use of autonomous vehicles. And at the end of the day the training that happens online turns into better and better performance offline.” “When you’re testing autonomous vehicles out on public roads, you know, not only are the people riding in that car part of the exper


Yet a truly autonomous vehicle still doesn’t exist.
A Hyundai NEXO fuel cell vehicle with Aurora self-driving systems.
As of October, 41 states have either enacted legislation or signed executive orders regulating the testing and use of autonomous vehicles.
And at the end of the day the training that happens online turns into better and better performance offline.”
“When you’re testing autonomous vehicles out on public roads, you know, not only are the people riding in that car part of the exper
Self-driving cars were supposed to be here already — here’s why they aren’t and when they should arrive Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-30  Authors: lora kolodny katie schoolov, lora kolodny, katie schoolov
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, supposed, heres, ceo, testing, systems, cars, selfdriving, autonomous, better, driverless, road, vehicles, arent, arrive, vehicle


Self-driving cars were supposed to be here already — here's why they aren't and when they should arrive

More companies are trying to bring self-driving cars to the masses than ever before. Yet a truly autonomous vehicle still doesn’t exist. And it’s not clear if, or when, our driverless future will arrive. Proponents in the industry, including Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Waymo CEO John Krafcik and Cruise CEO Dan Ammann, touted an aggressive timeline but missed and reset their goals. In a third-quarter earnings call, Musk said Tesla “appears to be on track for at least an early access release of a fully functional Full Self-Driving by the end of this year.” Other leaders in the field are taking a more sober view on driverless cars, what’s still needed to perfect them and how long before they are part of our daily lives. Avideh Zakhor, a professor at the University of California at Berkeley’s electrical engineering and computer sciences department, explained what inspired the rational reckoning in the industry: “There was a sense maybe a year or two ago, that ‘Oh, our algorithms are so good! We’re ready to launch. We’re gonna launch driverless cars any minute.’ And then obviously there’s been the setbacks of people getting killed or accidents happening, and now we’re a lot more cautious.”

A Hyundai NEXO fuel cell vehicle with Aurora self-driving systems. Aurora

States don’t have clear regulations governing the safety testing and deployment of driverless cars, and that’s one challenge to getting them out on the road. As of October, 41 states have either enacted legislation or signed executive orders regulating the testing and use of autonomous vehicles. In September, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released new federal guidelines for automated driving systems — but they’re only voluntary at this point. Miles driven by test vehicles on real roads had been a frequently touted metric. But to advance the safety of their driverless systems, big players including GM-owned Cruise and Amazon-backed Aurora have also developed their own means of testing in simulation, much like rocket and airplane makers would before a first test flight.

Aurora CEO Chris Urmson Aurora

Aurora CEO and co-founder Chris Urmson explained why this kind of testing matters so much, in addition to real world test driving: “We can create situations that we’re basically never going to see or very rarely see. So, for example, we might want to simulate what happens as a bicycle comes through an intersection, runs a red light and crashes into the side of our car. Turns out that doesn’t happen very often in the real world, but we want to know that if that happens, our vehicles are going to do something safe … we’re basically allowing the car to practice up in the cloud instead of on the road. And at the end of the day the training that happens online turns into better and better performance offline.” A safety-focused culture is essential, said Sam Abuelsamid, principal research analyst at Navigant and an engineer. “When you’re testing autonomous vehicles out on public roads, you know, not only are the people riding in that car part of the experiment, but so is everybody else around you. And they didn’t consent to being part of an experiment,” he said. Dan Albert, an autos historian and author of “Are We There Yet?,” said some companies have overstated the benefits of their “self-driving” systems today, and clearer communications about what the technology can and can’t do are needed. “One of the things I often hear from people is when an autonomous vehicle is better than the 50th percentile driver on the road, we have an absolute responsibility to let them onto the road,” he said. “And others like Elon Musk have said, you know, it’s almost irresponsible not to have these vehicles out there because they are safer and will be safer than human drivers … And so even if we could say that an autonomous vehicle was better than a human driver, it doesn’t mean that an autonomous vehicle is better than a human driver plus all the advanced driver assist systems we have.”

An employee drives a Tesla Motors Inc. Model S electric automobile, equipped with Autopilot hardware and software, hands-free on a highway. Jasper Juinen | Bloomberg | Getty Images


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-30  Authors: lora kolodny katie schoolov, lora kolodny, katie schoolov
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, supposed, heres, ceo, testing, systems, cars, selfdriving, autonomous, better, driverless, road, vehicles, arent, arrive, vehicle


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Amazon kills program that sent shoppers free items based on prior purchases

Amazon is shutting down a program that sends shoppers free samples based on what it thinks they want to buy. The program, which Amazon began testing earlier this year, used machine-learning tools to discern shoppers’ buying habits, then sent them free product samples curated to their tastes. “Amazon is constantly testing and launching new offerings to innovate on behalf of customers,” an Amazon spokesperson told CNBC. Even though some customers felt the program was creepy, it was an effective wa


Amazon is shutting down a program that sends shoppers free samples based on what it thinks they want to buy.
The program, which Amazon began testing earlier this year, used machine-learning tools to discern shoppers’ buying habits, then sent them free product samples curated to their tastes.
“Amazon is constantly testing and launching new offerings to innovate on behalf of customers,” an Amazon spokesperson told CNBC.
Even though some customers felt the program was creepy, it was an effective wa
Amazon kills program that sent shoppers free items based on prior purchases Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-26  Authors: annie palmer
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, based, product, shoppers, amazon, prior, program, kills, customers, business, purchases, advertising, tools, samples, free, testing, sent, items


Amazon kills program that sent shoppers free items based on prior purchases

Amazon is shutting down a program that sends shoppers free samples based on what it thinks they want to buy.

The program, which Amazon began testing earlier this year, used machine-learning tools to discern shoppers’ buying habits, then sent them free product samples curated to their tastes. Samples included items such as Maybelline mascara, Calvin Klein perfume and Kind bars, among other things.

The news was first reported by Business Insider.

While Amazon likened it to the site’s product recommendation tools, the program raised privacy concerns among some consumers who have grown increasingly wary of data mining and targeted advertising across the web. Now, Amazon says it is winding down the program.

“Amazon is constantly testing and launching new offerings to innovate on behalf of customers,” an Amazon spokesperson told CNBC. “At this time, we have decided to discontinue the sampling program in 2020.”

Even though some customers felt the program was creepy, it was an effective way for brands to get their products in front of Amazon shoppers for a nominal fee. Brands who took part in the program paid $2 per sample, on top of the actual cost of each product, Business Insider reported.

It comes as Amazon continues to gain share against Google and Facebook in the digital advertising market. Amazon has started to eat into Google’s dominance in search advertising, and it held its first major ad conference in October, signifying just how big the business has grown. At the same time, Amazon boasts rich data on customers’ purchasing habits that its rivals don’t have.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-26  Authors: annie palmer
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, based, product, shoppers, amazon, prior, program, kills, customers, business, purchases, advertising, tools, samples, free, testing, sent, items


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SpaceX blows the top off first Starship rocket in pressure testing ‘to the max’

SpaceX was conducting a test of its first assembled Starship rocket on Wednesday in Texas when immense pressure burst the tank at the top of the spacecraft, sending pieces flying. Starship is a massive rocket that SpaceX is developing, with the goal of launching cargo and people to the moon and Mars. Starship’s shiny external appearance is because of the type of stainless steel that SpaceX is using to build the rocket. Neither SpaceX or Musk offered an update to the company’s development timelin


SpaceX was conducting a test of its first assembled Starship rocket on Wednesday in Texas when immense pressure burst the tank at the top of the spacecraft, sending pieces flying.
Starship is a massive rocket that SpaceX is developing, with the goal of launching cargo and people to the moon and Mars.
Starship’s shiny external appearance is because of the type of stainless steel that SpaceX is using to build the rocket.
Neither SpaceX or Musk offered an update to the company’s development timelin
SpaceX blows the top off first Starship rocket in pressure testing ‘to the max’ Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-21  Authors: michael sheetz
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, test, starship, land, texas, musk, steel, moon, rocket, pressure, stainless, max, blows, spacex, testing


SpaceX blows the top off first Starship rocket in pressure testing 'to the max'

SpaceX was conducting a test of its first assembled Starship rocket on Wednesday in Texas when immense pressure burst the tank at the top of the spacecraft, sending pieces flying.

“The purpose of today’s test was to pressurize systems to the max, so the outcome was not completely unexpected. There were no injuries, nor is this a serious setback,” SpaceX said in a statement to CNBC.

Starship is a massive rocket that SpaceX is developing, with the goal of launching cargo and people to the moon and Mars. The rocket is designed to be reusable so SpaceX can launch and land it multiple times, like a commercial airplane. Starship’s shiny external appearance is because of the type of stainless steel that SpaceX is using to build the rocket.

“The best design decision on Starship is the use of 301 stainless steel, because of its strength during extreme temperatures,” Musk said in September.

Including the one that was damaged, the company has three of the Starship rockets under construction, with two being assembled simultaneously at a facility in Florida. But SpaceX was going to fly the first Starship in Texas to about 65,000 feet altitude this month, as CEO Elon Musk said in a September presentation. However, SpaceX said those plans changed recently.

“The decision had already been made to not fly this test article and the team is focused on the Mk3 builds, which are designed for orbit,” SpaceX said.

Following this Wednesday’s incident the company said first rocket, known as Mk1, “served as a valuable manufacturing pathfinder” but the “flight design is quite different.”

Neither SpaceX or Musk offered an update to the company’s development timeline for Starship after the incident. The company’s president Gwynne Shotwell said at a recent investor conference that SpaceX is aiming to land Starship on the moon by 2022.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-21  Authors: michael sheetz
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, test, starship, land, texas, musk, steel, moon, rocket, pressure, stainless, max, blows, spacex, testing


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London is testing on-demand public transport services that you can book with an app

London’s transport authority has launched a trial of an “on-demand” minibus service in the borough of Ealing, in the west of the city. In an announcement Wednesday, Transport for London said the service would operate between 6:00 a.m. and 1:00 a.m., costing £3.50 ($4.50) for a single trip. Transport for London, bus firm RATP and MOIA, a German technology business, are providing the service. Around the world, ride-hailing services such as Didi Chuxing, Uber, Lyft and Ola have become increasingly


London’s transport authority has launched a trial of an “on-demand” minibus service in the borough of Ealing, in the west of the city.
In an announcement Wednesday, Transport for London said the service would operate between 6:00 a.m. and 1:00 a.m., costing £3.50 ($4.50) for a single trip.
Transport for London, bus firm RATP and MOIA, a German technology business, are providing the service.
Around the world, ride-hailing services such as Didi Chuxing, Uber, Lyft and Ola have become increasingly
London is testing on-demand public transport services that you can book with an app Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-14  Authors: anmar frangoul
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, services, ondemand, app, using, minibus, public, book, london, bus, journeys, trial, ealing, service, technology, transport, testing


London is testing on-demand public transport services that you can book with an app

London’s transport authority has launched a trial of an “on-demand” minibus service in the borough of Ealing, in the west of the city.

Called “Slide Ealing”, travelers can book their journeys with an app or through a phone call. The bus does not have a designated route but will rather pick people up from “flexible stops.”

In an announcement Wednesday, Transport for London said the service would operate between 6:00 a.m. and 1:00 a.m., costing £3.50 ($4.50) for a single trip. It will run seven days a week for a period of 12 months. Customers can pay in advance for their journey through the app or over the phone using a Visa or Mastercard.

According to the Slide Ealing website, the technology that underpins the scheme enables “passengers traveling in a similar direction to be picked up and dropped off along the way.”

Transport for London, bus firm RATP and MOIA, a German technology business, are providing the service. MOIA is part of the Volkswagen Group.

The trial in Ealing is the second in the capital. Another service in Sutton, in the south of the city, was launched in May.

The last few years have seen a range of technological innovations introduced to London’s public transport system, which serves millions of people every day.

People can now pay for journeys on the city’s tube, bus and overground rail network using contactless cards or their smartphone, although contactless payment is not available on board the minibus pilots. Many bus stops across the city contain live travel information which counts down arrival times.

Around the world, ride-hailing services such as Didi Chuxing, Uber, Lyft and Ola have become increasingly popular methods of getting around, enabling people to book cab journeys using their smartphone.

When it comes to on-demand minibus transport, London is not the only place in the U.K. operating such a scheme. Arriva, for example, operates a similar app-based service called ArrivaClick in the cities of Liverpool and Leicester.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-14  Authors: anmar frangoul
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, services, ondemand, app, using, minibus, public, book, london, bus, journeys, trial, ealing, service, technology, transport, testing


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Iowa paid a security firm to break into a courthouse, then arrested employees when they succeeded

A penetration test, often referred to as a “pen test,” is an assessment conducted by a security firm meant to root out technical and physical security flaws that could put data at risk. On Sept. 9, Justin Wynn and Gary Demercurio, employees of pen testing firm Coalfire, were attempting to circumvent the security system at a courthouse in Dallas County, Iowa, to gain entry using those “other means.” “It’s not totally unusual to have police involved,” in a pen test, but it is unusual for security


A penetration test, often referred to as a “pen test,” is an assessment conducted by a security firm meant to root out technical and physical security flaws that could put data at risk.
On Sept. 9, Justin Wynn and Gary Demercurio, employees of pen testing firm Coalfire, were attempting to circumvent the security system at a courthouse in Dallas County, Iowa, to gain entry using those “other means.”
“It’s not totally unusual to have police involved,” in a pen test, but it is unusual for security
Iowa paid a security firm to break into a courthouse, then arrested employees when they succeeded Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-12  Authors: kate fazzini
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, facilities, employees, testing, paid, succeeded, firm, courthouse, break, security, mcandrew, data, pen, arrested, test, state, county, iowa


Iowa paid a security firm to break into a courthouse, then arrested employees when they succeeded

The incident has sparked concern across the cybersecurity industry, including worries that ramped-up efforts by many firms to test facilities, including voting and election facilities in advance of the 2020 presidential election, may put security professionals at risk.

In September, two employees of the company were arrested in the course of doing their jobs. The charges still have not been dropped.

The state of Iowa contracted with a prominent cybersecurity company to conduct “penetration tests” of certain municipal buildings in September, particularly courthouses.

A penetration test, often referred to as a “pen test,” is an assessment conducted by a security firm meant to root out technical and physical security flaws that could put data at risk. This can include testing servers to see whether sensitive data can be stolen electronically, or testing facilities to see whether someone could easily break in and gain access to sensitive data or equipment. Pen testers are paid to attempt to break into corporate or government facilities, computers, devices and data centers.

On Sept. 9, Justin Wynn and Gary Demercurio, employees of pen testing firm Coalfire, were attempting to circumvent the security system at a courthouse in Dallas County, Iowa, to gain entry using those “other means.” The pair had already successfully tested two other courthouses, and they’d had positive interactions with authorities there, according to the company’s CEO, Tom McAndrew.

At the Dallas County courthouse, the pair found a door left propped open, McAndrew told CNBC. They closed the door, then attempted to open it again, tripping an alarm in the process.

The protocol in this type of situation is to wait for authorities to arrive, McAndrew said, which Wynn and Demercurio did. At that point, they had a friendly interaction with sheriff’s deputies, he said. The deputies examined their paperwork and credentials. But when a sheriff arrived, they were arrested on burglary charges. They spent a night in jail, and the company had to bail them out.

“It’s not totally unusual to have police involved,” in a pen test, but it is unusual for security professionals to get arrested, McAndrew said.

Even more surprisingly, the two employees are still facing charges in Dallas County, despite having a clear contract outlining that they were hired by the state’s judicial branch to break into the building. McAndrew believes it “might be unprecedented” for contractors arrested during a pen test to face charges.

Local prosecutors could not immediately be reached for comment, and an inquiry to the Iowa governor’s office was not immediately answered.

According to local news reports at the time of the arrest, there appeared to be a miscommunication between the state, which contracted for the pen test, and the county, which had jurisdiction to monitor security at the courthouse. But this should not have been relevant to the issue of whether a crime occurred, McAndrew said.

“I don’t know why they didn’t let them go. They were remanded to jail. We had thought the state was going to work out these issues with the county. Once we were told the charges were going to be reduced and not dropped, we were shocked that this was happening,” McAndrew said.

Iowa Supreme Court Justice Mark Cady apologized to a state Senate committee for the incident last month, according to the Des Moines Register. But some legislators complained that the tests may have posed some sort of “danger” to the public, according to reports.

Coalfire had been engaged with the Iowa Supreme Court for pen testing since 2015, according to an investigation of the incident. A service order allowed for typical pen test services including “tail-gating” — attempting to enter facilities behind an authorized employee with access to all building areas — and “non destructive lock-picking.”


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-12  Authors: kate fazzini
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, facilities, employees, testing, paid, succeeded, firm, courthouse, break, security, mcandrew, data, pen, arrested, test, state, county, iowa


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Massive wind turbine blade arrives in Massachusetts for testing

A huge wind turbine blade measuring 107-meters long has been transported to a facility in Massachusetts for testing. The blade is designed to be used on GE Renewable Energy’s Haliade-X 12MW offshore wind turbine. The company has repeatedly described it as “the world’s largest offshore wind turbine” and says that one turbine will be able to power more than 5,000 U.S. homes. The country’s first offshore wind farm, the five turbine, 30 MW Block Island Wind Farm off Rhode island, only commenced comm


A huge wind turbine blade measuring 107-meters long has been transported to a facility in Massachusetts for testing.
The blade is designed to be used on GE Renewable Energy’s Haliade-X 12MW offshore wind turbine.
The company has repeatedly described it as “the world’s largest offshore wind turbine” and says that one turbine will be able to power more than 5,000 U.S. homes.
The country’s first offshore wind farm, the five turbine, 30 MW Block Island Wind Farm off Rhode island, only commenced comm
Massive wind turbine blade arrives in Massachusetts for testing Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-07  Authors: anmar frangoul
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, capacity, report, testing, energy, quarter, turbine, massive, blade, offshore, massachusetts, wind, arrives


Massive wind turbine blade arrives in Massachusetts for testing

A huge wind turbine blade measuring 107-meters long has been transported to a facility in Massachusetts for testing.

The blade is designed to be used on GE Renewable Energy’s Haliade-X 12MW offshore wind turbine.

In a statement earlier this week, GE Renewable Energy said the blade would be subjected to a “series of fatigue tests” at the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center’s Wind Technology Testing Center. The blade was transported to the testing facility via ship.

The firm is aiming to commercialize the Haliade-X 12MW by 2021. With a capacity of 12 megawatts and a height of 260 meters, the scale of the turbine is considerable. The company has repeatedly described it as “the world’s largest offshore wind turbine” and says that one turbine will be able to power more than 5,000 U.S. homes.

As technology develops, the size of wind turbines is increasing. In September 2018, for example, MHI Vestas Offshore Wind launched the V164-10.0 MW. The turbine has 80-meter long blades which weigh 35 tons each, and a tip height of around 187 meters.

Looking at the bigger picture, last week a report from the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) stated that the U.S. was home to more than 100 gigawatts (GW) of wind energy capacity.

The AWEA’s “U.S. Wind Industry Third Quarter 2019 Market Report” says that 1,927 megawatts – a little under 2 GW – of wind power capacity was commissioned in the third quarter of 2019.

This represents the highest third quarter on record for installations, according to the trade association. These installations pushed overall capacity above the landmark figure of 100 GW, the AWEA’s report said.

While the onshore wind market in the U.S. has undergone significant development in recent years, its offshore sector is still nascent.

The country’s first offshore wind farm, the five turbine, 30 MW Block Island Wind Farm off Rhode island, only commenced commercial operations in late 2016.

By comparison, Europe is home to over 18,400 MW of installed offshore wind capacity, according to industry body WindEurope.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2019-11-07  Authors: anmar frangoul
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, capacity, report, testing, energy, quarter, turbine, massive, blade, offshore, massachusetts, wind, arrives


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