Human bias is making AI racist


When you perform a Google search for every day queries, you don’t typically expect systemic racism to rear its ugly head. Yet, if you’re a woman searching for a hairstyle, that’s exactly what you might find. A simple Google image search for ‘women’s professional hairstyles’ returns the following: Here, you’ll find hairstyles, generally done in a professional setting by stylists. It’s the nature of Google. It returns what it thinks you’re looking for based on contextual clues, citations and link data. In general, and without further context, you could probably pat Google on the back and say ‘job well done.’…

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Sorry Apple, but the iMessage App Store sucks


You might not realize it, but the iMessage App Store is pretty awful. When announced, it was one of my favorite new features, and personally I still love it. Crazy sticker packs and lightweight apps aren’t life-changing, but when used in the right situation they breathe life into text message conversations. Unfortunately, this breath probably isn’t enough to resuscitate the iMessage App Store itself. Design The problems are numerous, but we can start with design. As a design-first company, Apple truly dropped the ball here. Using a bad example, but a good rule: Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer once said no app should…

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Facebook now lets anyone go Live from a desktop


After bringing live streaming to mobile and quickly dominating the space, Facebook is now doing the same for desktops and laptops. Starting today, anyone can stream through Facebook’s web interface. The feature has actually been available on Pages for some time, but I’m sure plenty of everyday users want to stream whatever mundane thing they’re doing at their desks as well. In all seriousness, desktop support opens up Facebook to whole new kinda of livestreaming. Currently, user broadcasts tend to be boring shakycam messes, because there’s only so much you can do from a smartphone. With support for standard streaming software, Facebook can now do more…

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OnePlus 3T now comes in a stealthy Midnight Black color option


Though I thought the gunmetal OnePlus 3T was quite the looker in my review, some people just need their phones to be pitch black for maximum stealth cred. Fret no more, goths, as OnePlus has introduced a limited edition Midnight Black model. Truth be told, OnePlus already announced a black model last week through a partnership with French retailer Colette, which was selling it in a single retail location in Paris, adorned with its own logo. Given most of the world doesn’t live in France, that wasn’t very helpful other than being something to lust over. It seems the company was just biding its…

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Hate speech leads to thousands in donations for girl coders


An ugly case of harassment had an unexpected silver lining this week, when it started a donation train to fund a camp for future female game designers. Girls Make Games is a series of camps and workshops aimed at teaching young women the basics of game design, including coding, modeling, and artwork. The camps are sponsored by LearnDesign, a company in California, and a portion of donations received go towards financial aid for potential students. Apparently the catalyst for the giving spree was the harassment of Allie Rose-Marie Leost, an Electronic Arts employee who may or may not have been involved in Mass…

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iPhone lorded over the smartphone industry last year, Samsung came in second


New research indicates that last year Apple left the entire smartphone industry in the dust with its iPhone, shipping more units than any other manufacturer – including Samsung. The iPhone 6S topped the charts with a total of around 60 million units shipped, followed by the iPhone 7, 7 Plus and the 6S Plus, according to a recent report from intelligence firm IHS Markit. For more context, the research takes into account quarterly shipment data for more than 350 smartphone models. In fact, Apple had such a massive lead over fellow competitors that the first non-iPhone entry in the report – Samsung’s…

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How to partner with data to create insightful stories


Whether you’re a marketer trying to persuade people, a technologist building a startup, or an executive making business decisions, data is your partner. You can use it to make better decisions, and create insightful data stories inside and outside your company. The first step is to accept your relationship status with data: you’re partners forever. Once you understand that, there is an important consideration that will define how to tell your data stories: the context of where they live, which also defines the audience that will interact with them. Here are some important lessons I learned when visualizing and communicating data…

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