Siri Gets A New Boss

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Siri Gets A New Boss
Number 543
Broadcast Date JULY 11, 2018
Episode Length 4:03
Hosts Tom Merritt

Apple puts a new person in charge of Ai, Alphabet spins out Wing and Loon and 3D-printed gun designs get approval from US DoJ.


Former Google engineer John Giannandrea joined Apple in early April and has now been put in charge of Siri. Giannandrea gets the title chief of machine learning and AI strategy and reports to Tim Cook. He is the third leader of that team in the past year. Eddy Cue oversaw the team until September when it was shifted to Craig Federighi.
AT&T announced Wednesday that it has reached an exclusive agreement to sell products from augmented reality company Magic Leap in the US. You can see Magic Leap's first public product demo on Twitch. Magic Leap One is scheduled to ship to developers later this year. When it becomes available to the public, AT&T will initially sell Magic Leap in stores in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
HTC says its Exodus smartphone with blockchain features will arrive by the end of the year with a price somewhere around $1,000. The Exodus will come with a cryptocurrency wallet and the blockchain-powered game Cryptokitties. At the same time, Sirin Labs announced a phone with blockchain features called Finney coming in November for $1,000. It features a slideout display called a safe screen that is only used for crypto transactions and Token Conversion Service which automatically converts cryptocoins to whichever one is needed for a transaction.
The UK's Information Comissioner's Office announced a preliminary fine of the maximum £500,000 against Facebook for a lack of strong privacy protections relating to Cambridge Analytica's misuse of user data. The UK office will now discuss the situation with Facebook and the fine could be adjusted. Another update is expected in October.
US federal prosecutors have arrested and charged former Apple employee Xiaolang Zhang with stealing trade secrets related to Apple's autonomous car technology. Zhang worked for Apple from 2015 until April of this year designing and testing circuit boards. He left Apple saying he needed t0 move to China to be close to his mother. He then took a job with Xmotors, a US subsidiary of China's Xiaopeng Motors. The FBI says Zhang downloaded data from Apple's network and stored it on his wife's personal laptop. Zhang also admits removing two circuit boards and a server from Apple. Xmotors says it has no indication that Zhang communicated any sensitive information to it, and have fired Zhang.
Wired reports that the US Department of Justice has settled with Cody Wilson over allegations of violating International Trade in Arms Regulations for making plans for a 3D printed gun available online. In the settlement, the DoJ promises to let the Commerce department regulate the export of firearms below .50 caliber and not police technical data about those weapons. Wilson also receives a unique license to publish designs. Wilson's Defense Distributed will relaunch later this month for sharing weapon designs.
A future version of the Opera browser for Android will include a storage solution for cryptocurrency. It will also include built-in integration with Ethereum’s Web3 API. That will make decentralized dApps available alongside the usual web. The new features are now available to select testers in private beta.
Alphabet announced it is separating its Loon and Wing projects from the X research company into individual companies under the Alphabet umbrella. Loon uses baloons to provide internet and Wing develops delivery drones. Alastair Westgarth will be CEO of Loon, and James Ryan Burgess will be Wing’s CEO. Meanwhile Alphabet's X says it will focus on robotics, free-space optics and augmented reality.
Sonos is adding support for Apple's Airplay 2 to the Sonos Beam, Sonos One, Playbase, and second-generation Play:5 speakers. Older speakers will need to be networked to one of those models to use it. Airplay 2 supports multi-room audio and is more integrated with Siri.


Preceded by:
"New Cheap Surface Tablet"
Siri Gets A New Boss
Followed by:
"YouTube rolls out Copyright Match tool"