Science & Tech

Google to shut Hangouts by 2020

shut

MNA Tech Desk: Google will shut its popular Hangouts service for consumers by 2020, 9to5Google has reported, citing sources aware of the product’s roadmap, reported news agency. Hangouts was launched as a replacement for Gchat in 2013 by the tech titan but has been losing features in recent years as the company has stopped updating the app and taken away SMS messaging. However, Hangouts still is a prominent chat option in Gmail on the web and the app also exists on the Google Play Store. Google Hangouts is a communication platform developed by the company which includes messaging, video chat, ...

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Google pays respect to Tareque Masud

Tareque Masud

MNA Science Tech Desk: Google Doodle marks the 62nd birthday of Bangladeshi filmmaker Tareque Masud. Launching a Doodle, search engine giant Google honours renowned Bangladeshi filmmaker Tareque Masud marking his 62nd birthday on Thursday. Tareque Masud is one of the best filmmakers of the country. ‘Muktir Gaan’ (The Song of Freedom), ‘Matir Moina’ (The Clay Bird), ‘Ontarjatra’ (Homeland), ‘Runway’, ‘A Kind of Childhood’, ‘Adam Surat’ are among his notable works. Tareque won several prestigious awards including the International Critics’ award at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival, Special Jury Award at the Osian’s Cinefan Festival of Asian and Arab Cinema 2006, ...

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Google rolls out ‘Call Screen’ feature

feature

MNA Tech Desk: Google has started rolling out a feature for its Pixel smartphones that lets users make use of the Google Assistant to see who is calling and why before they answer a call. The feature allows users to see a real-time transcript of how the caller responds so that they can then decide whether to pick up, respond by tapping a quick reply (for example, “I’ll call you back later”), or mark the call as spam and dismiss. “Call Screen is only available to English speakers in the United States who have Pixel 2, 2 XL, 3, or ...

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Uber fined for data breach

fined

MNA Science & Tech Desk: Britain and the Netherlands fined ride-hailing giant Uber more than one million euros (dollars) on Tuesday for hiding a huge data breach for more than one year. Hackers compromised customers’ personal data from some 57 million riders and drivers worldwide in October and November 2016, but US-based Uber kept it secret until November 2017. Dutch authorities fined Uber 600,000 euros and Britain imposed a £385,000 (435,000 euros) penalty, the two countries said in coordinated statements, reported news agency. Britain’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) said hackers stole the names, email addresses and phone numbers of 2.7 ...

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NASA’s InSight lands on Mars

InSight

MNA Tech Desk: NASA’s InSight spacecraft, the first robotic lander designed to study the deep interior of a distant world, touched down safely on the surface of Mars on Monday with instruments to detect planetary seismic rumblings never measured anywhere but Earth. Engineers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) near Los Angeles burst into cheers, applause and hugs as they received signals confirming InSight’s arrival on Martian soil – a vast, barren plain near the planet’s equator – shortly before 3 p.m. EST (2000 GMT) Minutes later, JPL controllers received a fuzzy “selfie” photograph of the probe’s new surroundings on ...

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Banglalink launches music app Vibe

Vibe

MNA Tech Desk: Banglalink has officially released more than 50 exclusive albums on Banglalink Vibe, the world’s biggest Bangla music streaming app, to facilitate digital access for millions of music lovers to the newly released songs of popular artists. The announcement on the official release of the new albums was made at a press conference held at Lakeshore Hotel yesterday. Present at the press conference were Chief Commercial Officer of Banglalink, Ritesh Kumar Singh, Chief Corporate and Regulatory Affairs Officer Taimur Rahman, Digital Business and Global Partnership Director Gaurav Kakkar, Digital Services Director Abdul Muqit Ahmed, Head of e-Products Anik ...

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SpaceX crew rocket set for 1st flight in January

SpaceX

MNA Science & Tech Desk: The first flight of a SpaceX rocket tailored to fly astronauts to the International Space Station is set for liftoff from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on7 January, NASA said. The launch test is a crucial milestone in the space agency’s Commercial Crew Program, which aims to launch humans to space from US soil for the first time in nearly a decade. The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration said SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft – which will shuttle three astronauts to space from the same launch pad that sent Apollo 11’s three-man crew to the ...

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Scientists vote to redefine kilogram value

kilogram

MNA Science Desk: It may not change how you buy bananas, but scientists have voted to redefine the value of a kilogram, in what they called a landmark decision that will boost the accuracy of scientific measurements. Since 1889, a kilogram has been defined by a shiny lump of platinum-iridium kept in a special glass case and known as the International Prototype of the Kilogram. It is housed at the headquarters of the International Bureau of Weights and Measures (whose French acronym is BIPM), just outside Paris. Members of the BIPM, which groups some 60 nations, agreed on Friday after ...

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NASA considers to sellselling seats on spacecraft

NASA

MNA Science & Technology Desk: NASA is considering selling seats on the spacecraft that will ferry its astronauts to the International Space Station, offering rides to the public while opening another line of revenue as the agency attempts to broaden its appeal. On several occasions, Russia has flown wealthy individuals who paid millions for the ride to space. And a trio of private companies backed by billionaires, is also looking to fly tourists out of the atmosphere. But except for a couple of rare exceptions, such as Christa McAuliffe, the teacher who was killed when the space Shuttle Challenger exploded ...

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ICT Lab to be set up in every educational institute: Jabbar

Jabbar

MNA Tech Desk: Posts, Telecommunications and Information Communication Technology (ICT) Minister Mustafa Jabbar said ICT lab and multimedia classrooms will be set up at every educational institution of the country within next two years. Mustafa Jabbar said, “The existing professions are getting extinct everyday. Therefore, it is imperative to learn technology-based knowledge to cope with competitive world.” The minister was addressing a function at Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) auditorium of ICT Tower on Sunday. The minister distributed laptops to the best trainees and educational institutions. The laptops were given under two projects- ‘Learning and Earning’ and ‘Computer and Language Training ...

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FB to launch independent body for content removal calls

independent body

MNA Tech Desk: Facebook announced Thursday it is creating an independent body to make potentially precedent-setting calls on what content should be yanked from the social network. The announcement came as Facebook reported it has ramped up its ability to quickly detect “hate speech” and other posts violating community rules, with the leading social network under pressure from regulators in various countries and activists to root out abusive and inappropriate content. “I have come to believe that we shouldn’t be making so many decisions about free expression and safety on our own,” Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said in a ...

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Ginger: Nepal’s first robot waiter

robot waiter

MNA Tech Desk: “Please enjoy your meal,” says Nepal’s first robot waiter, Ginger, as she delivers a plate of steaming dumplings to a table of hungry customers. The poor Himalayan nation is better known for its soaring mountain peaks than technological prowess, but a group of self-taught young innovators are seeking to change that. Local start-up Paaila Technology built Ginger, a 1.5 metre (five-foot) tall robot, from scratch and programmed her to understand both English and Nepali. The bilingual humanoid robot — named Ginger after a common ingredient in Nepali cuisine — can even crack jokes like Apple’s Siri or ...

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FB launched video app ‘Lasso’

video app

MNA Tech Desk: Facebook has launched a video app called Lasso that enables users to make and share short-format videos with filters and special effects. The app can be considered a Facebook version of the TikTok app that has become quite popular in the past year. Bowen Pan, a product manager at Facebook, tweeted the launch on Saturday, and added it was available only in the US for now, reported news agency. Equipped with video-editing tools, the app allows users to add text as well as music to their videos. It is available for both Android and iOS. All profiles ...

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4 Bangladeshi projects get ASOCIO-2018 award

ASOCIO

MNA Tech Desk: Four government and non-government organizations of Bangladesh received honorary awards under four categories in ASOCIO Digital Summit 2018, reported news agency. The summit was organized by Asian-Oceanian Computing Industry Organization (ASOCIO), a grouping of ICT industry associations representing the Asian-Oceania region. The Bangladeshi organizations were named in the award ceremony of ASOCIO Digital Summit 2018 held at Ena International Hotel in Japan capital Tokyo. Bangladesh Communication Satellite Company Limited (BCSCL) got the award under outstanding ICT company award category, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) got award under outstanding user organization category, Development of National ICT ...

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Samsung gives first glimpse of foldable phone

foldable phone

MNA Tech Desk: Samsung Electronics Co Ltd unveiled its much-anticipated foldable phone in San Francisco, urging Android developers to start writing apps for it. The South Korean tech company needs to get the foldable phone right to reverse steep declines in profit for its mobile division and restore some of the cachet its brand has lost to Apple Inc. Foldable phones promise the screen of a small tablet in a pocket-sized device. Justin Denison, a senior vice president of mobile product marketing, showed a prototype with a screen he said measured 7.3 inches (18.5 cm) diagonally. Folded in two it ...

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Twitter deletes over 10,000 accounts

accounts

MNA Tech Desk: Twitter Inc deleted more than 10,000 automated accounts posting messages that discouraged people from voting in Tuesday’s US election and wrongly appeared to be from Democrats, after the party flagged the misleading tweets to the social media company. “We took action on relevant accounts and activity on Twitter,” a Twitter spokesman said in an email. The removals took place in late September and early October. Twitter removed more than 10,000 account, according to three sources familiar with the Democrats’ effort. The number is modest, considering that Twitter has previously deleted millions of accounts it determined were responsible ...

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Hyundai integrating solar panels

Hyundai

MNA Tech Desk: Hyundai and Kia are planning to introduce solar roofs on some models. The new tech will help owners rely less on increasingly expensive fuel. They are set to implement the solar technology in hybrid, fully electric and internal combustion vehicles. The first generation tech will be used in hybrids, weaving silicon solar panels into the car’s roof. Hyundai believes the solar panels can charge the batteries by between 30 and 60 per cent capacity on a normal day. Second-generation tech will be installed on internal combustion vehicles. Hyundai plans to integrate a semi-transparent solar roof with a ...

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New dinosaur species found in Argentina

dinosaur

MNA Science & Tech Desk: A team of Spanish and Argentine paleontologists have discovered the remains of a dinosaur that lived 110 million years ago in the centre of the country, the National University of La Matanza revealed Friday. The remains came from three separate dinosaurs from the herbivorous group of sauropods, the best known of which are the Diplodocus and Brontosaurus. This new species has been named Lavocatisaurus agrioensis. “We found most of the cranial bones: the snout, the jaws, a lot of teeth, also the bones that define the eye sockets for example and, in that way, we ...

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Apple launches new Macs, iPad

iPad

MNA Science & Tech Desk: Apple has unveiled a new version of its MacBook Air laptop, this time made of recycled aluminum, as well as a new Mac Mini and an iPad Pro, all pricier than their predecessors. Nearly 10 years after the launch of the first MacBook Air by the late Steve Jobs, his successor Tim Cook presented on Tuesday the latest version of this PC, just 1.56 cm thick, compared to 1.94 cm (0.75 inches). This model was made with 100 percent recycled aluminum and recycled plastic, a change which reduces its carbon footprint, Apple said. Last year ...

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Satellite launched to study climate change

change

MNA Science Desk: The first Franco-Chinese satellite was launched into orbit on Monday to study ocean surface winds and waves around the clock, better predict cyclones and improve scientists’ understanding of climate change. A Long March 2C carrier rocket blasted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in northwest China’s Gobi Desert at 0043 GMT to enter orbit 520 kilometres (323 miles) above the Earth, according to China’s State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence. The 650-kilogram (1,430 pound) machine is the first satellite jointly built by China and France and will allow climate scientists to better ...

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iPay and Banglalink signs an agreement

iPay

MNA Tech Desk: iPay Systems Limited, has signed a strategic agreement with Banglalink at Banglalink Head Office in Gulshan. This unique partnership is set to unleash a fresh wave of enthusiasm in the rapidly growing digital economy of the country. The agreement was signed by Founder & CEO of iPay Systems Limited Mr. Zakaria Swapan and CCO of Banglalink Ritesh Kumar Singh, on behalf of their respective organizations. The agreement enhances the opportunity of Banglalink’s digital drive where it will closely work to facilitate payment solution for various Banglalink digital products including recharge as well as digital touch points like ...

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Google sacks 48 staff over sexual harassment

feature

MNA Tech Desk: Google has sacked 48 people for sexual harassment in the last two years, it has emerged. The terminations included 13 senior managers. Google’s CEO, Sundar Pichai, made the announcement in an email to all employees on Thursday, reported news agency. The email, obtained by CNBC, was in response to a New York Times story that the tech giant had protected Android creator Andy Rubin despite misconduct allegations. Mr Rubin denied the accusations. Mr Pichai’s email, co-signed by vice president of people operations Eileen Naughton, read: “We are dead serious about making sure we provide a safe and ...

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Facebook simplifies Messenger

Messenger

MNA Tech Desk: Facebook on Tuesday announced an overhaul of its Messenger smartphone app in an effort to simplify the service for its 1.3 billion monthly global users. The social network began rolling out a redesigned version featuring three tabs instead of nine, saying it was “going back to its roots” seven years after the standalone app’s launch. “We build one feature after another; they’re piling up,” Messenger chief Stan Chudnovsky said of the service, which has grown from a simple messaging app to one that lets users make video calls, send money and more. The updated tabs allow users ...

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Google Doodle celebrates Shamsur Rahman’s birthday

Shamsur

MNA Tech Desk: Search engine giant Google has created a new Doodle on its homepage celebrating the life of Bangladeshi poet, columnist and journalist Shamsur Rahman on the occasion of his 89th birth anniversary, reported news agency. Shamsur Rahman (23 October 1929 – 17 August 2006) who emerged in the latter half of the 20th century wrote more than sixty books of poetry and is considered as one of the key figures in Bengali literature. He is also remembered as the “unofficial poet laureate of Bangladesh.” Rahman published more than sixty books of poetry, ranging from love sonnets to patriotic ...

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Huawei to set up manufacturing unit in India

Huawei

MNA Science & Tech Desk: Chinese telecom giant Huawei Global Vice-President Jim Xu said it plans to begin manufacturing mobile phones in India by next year. Huawei already has a presence in India through its sub-brand “Honor” which is sold through online channels. The company’s plans for local manufacturing is mainly driven by the fact that India levies 20 percent duty on imported devices, reported news agency. However, Jim Xu also reportedly said that his company is also working on plans to open 1,000 company-branded stores across India in the next 2-3 years, in a bid to have a share ...

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ASUS announces new Vivobook S15 (S530)

ASUS

MNA Tech Desk: ASUS Bangladesh announced VivoBook S15 (S530), a stylish and lightweight Windows 10 laptops designed for the young, and the young at heart, reported news agency. The new vivobook S530 features bold color-blocking designs, with five vibrant color options and several textured finishes that let users fully express their personalities. The ErgoLift hinge replicates the feel of typing on a desktop keyboard for more comfortable typing.The VivoBook S15 is powered by up to an 8th Generation Intel® Core i7 processor, with NVIDIA® GeForce® MX150 discrete graphics. The laptop also features dual-storage design. ASUS VivoBook S15 will be available ...

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FB launches ‘war room’ to combat misinformation

War Room

MNA Tech Desk: In Facebook’s “War Room,” a nondescript space adorned with American and Brazilian flags, a team of 20 people monitors computer screens for signs of suspicious activity, reported news agency. The freshly launched unit at Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters in California is the nerve centre for the fight against misinformation and manipulation of the largest social network by foreign actors trying to influence elections in the United States and elsewhere. Inside, the walls have clocks showing the time in various regions of the US and Brazil, maps and TV screens showing CNN, Fox News and Twitter, and other ...

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