Summary of “Strava Heatmap shows that fitness trackers represent a privacy threat”

Just how big of a problem was brought into stark relief Monday, when a Twitter user pointed out that the Strava global heatmap – an online, interactive map of activity by people who use the Strava mobile app or have a Fitbit or Jawbone – inadvertently revealed the location of military bases overseas.
To make matters worse, Wired reported it’s also possible to take data publicly available via Strava’s API and see the names of individuals tied to specific running routes.
People have hard time comprehending what a searchable database of many people’s data reveal, etc.
Adam Harvey, perhaps best known for creating CV Dazzle and Hyperface, pointed out that the digital traces we leave online via fitness tracking apps like Strava give others power over us.
Strava helps illustrate fact that if anyone gained access to all of Google’s data they would rule the world.
While the U.S. government is likely not about to drone you, there exist other threats to your privacy – both present and future – that are only exacerbated by apps like Strava and devices like Fitbit.
Sure, you can denote your runs as “Private” on the aforementioned app, but even having done that, your data is still being uploaded to Strava’s servers – it’s just not actively shared with every creep who decides to poke around publicly available datasets like the heatmap.
For starters, try deleting the Strava app from your smartphone or tossing that Fitbit in your drawer and leaving it there.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Strava Heatmap shows that fitness trackers represent a privacy threat”

Just how big of a problem was brought into stark relief Monday, when a Twitter user pointed out that the Strava global heatmap – an online, interactive map of activity by people who use the Strava mobile app or have a Fitbit or Jawbone – inadvertently revealed the location of military bases overseas.
To make matters worse, Wired reported it’s also possible to take data publicly available via Strava’s API and see the names of individuals tied to specific running routes.
People have hard time comprehending what a searchable database of many people’s data reveal, etc.
Adam Harvey, perhaps best known for creating CV Dazzle and Hyperface, pointed out that the digital traces we leave online via fitness tracking apps like Strava give others power over us.
Strava helps illustrate fact that if anyone gained access to all of Google’s data they would rule the world.
While the U.S. government is likely not about to drone you, there exist other threats to your privacy – both present and future – that are only exacerbated by apps like Strava and devices like Fitbit.
Sure, you can denote your runs as “Private” on the aforementioned app, but even having done that, your data is still being uploaded to Strava’s servers – it’s just not actively shared with every creep who decides to poke around publicly available datasets like the heatmap.
For starters, try deleting the Strava app from your smartphone or tossing that Fitbit in your drawer and leaving it there.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How WeChat came to rule China”

Now, WeChat is poised to take on an even greater role: an initiative is underway to integrate WeChat with China’s electronic ID system.
It may be hard for people outside of China to grasp just how influential WeChat has become there.
“For all intents and purposes WeChat is your phone, and to a far greater extent in China than anywhere else, your phone is everything,” wrote Ben Thompson, consultant and founder of the blog Stratechery.
Last year, Tencent added mini-apps to WeChat, creating an app store of sorts: inside WeChat, you can play games, pay bills, find local hangouts, book doctor appointments, file police reports, hail taxis, hold video conferences, and access bank services.
“WeChat becomes harder and harder for its users to opt out,” says Yuhua Wang, a former Shanghai resident who wrote a piece called “How WeChat grows into a huge part of our life,” for USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.
Since WeChat requires users to register with their real names per government policy, it’s not a stretch to imagine that one day, WeChat may fully replace state IDs.
The program was developed by the research institute of the Ministry of Public Security and Tencent’s WeChat team and is backed by banks and other government departments, including the China Construction Bank and the Guangzhou police station’s Nansha District branch.
WeChat has a reputation for being heavily monitored, despite Tencent’s attempts to convince users to “Rest assured, respecting user privacy has always been one of WeChat’s most important principles.” But even if the company says otherwise, on a technical level, it doesn’t offer users much protection against government surveillance.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Google Arts & Culture App and the Rise of the “Coded Gaze””

In December, Google introduced a feature to its Arts & Culture app that allows you to take a selfie with your phone and use it to generate results from the company’s image database for your own museum doppelgänger.
Last week, as more and more users discovered the feature, Arts & Culture briefly became the most downloaded app in the iTunes store.
When Amit Sood, the president of Google Arts & Culture, discussed the app with Bloomberg Technology, on Monday, he spoke of it in downright Bergerian terms.
As it happened, the Arts & Culture app did better than I’d expected.
In one way, the art selfie app might be seen as a fulfillment of Berger’s effort to demystify the art of the past.
In Berger’s story this flattening represents the people prying away power from “a cultural hierarchy of relic specialists.” Google Arts & Culture is overseen by a new cadre of specialists: the programmers and technology executives responsible for the coded gaze.
Today the Google Cultural Institute, which released the Arts & Culture app, boasts more than forty-five thousand art works scanned in partnership with over sixty museums.
What does it mean that our cultural history, like everything else, is increasingly under the watchful eye of a giant corporation whose business model rests on data mining? One dystopian possibility offered by critics in the wake of the Google selfie app was that Google was using all of the millions of unflattering photos to train its algorithms.

The orginal article.

Summary of “People love Google’s new feature that matches your selfie to a famous painting”

Do you look like the Mona Lisa? Or maybe more of an American Gothic?
Social media is being flooded with Google’s opinions, at least, as part of a new feature that compares a user’s selfie with the company’s catalog of historical artworks, looking for the just-perfect doppelganger.
The update to the Google Arts & Culture App has catapulted it to the most-downloaded free app on the App Store.
It claimed the No. 1 spot in the U.S. on Saturday, according to the app metrics site AppAnnie.
How does Google do it? The app uses computer-vision tech to examine what is similar about your face to the thousands of pieces of art that are shared with Google by museums and other institutions.
Google says this new feature is merely experimental – the app has been around since 2016.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Saving receipts can mean big money in 2018”

My New Year’s resolution? Save every receipt in 2018.That means receipts from every gas-station fill-up, grocery run and restaurant meal.
For years, I’ve been earning cash back on my everyday purchases by submitting receipts through smartphone cashback apps such as Ibotta, SavingStar and Checkout 51.It’s easy to make money back on your groceries if you’re willing to put in a little time.
Class action lawsuitsSaving the receipts should come in handy to earn money with future class action lawsuit settlements, which can add hundreds to thousands of dollars to your savings.
If you submit eligible receipts for a class action lawsuit related to a Burger King coupon snafu on Croissan’wich breakfast sandwiches, you’ll get a much bigger settlement than submitting a claim without proof of purchase.
That’s a huge difference but I doubt many people saved those receipts, which need to be submitted by the Jan. 19 deadline at www.
Scott Hardy, founder and CEO of Top Class Actions website, said the majority of people don’t attach receipts.
South Carolina residents have a new reason to save receipts for gas fill-ups and car maintenance.
Some store rewards programs also save copies of your receipts.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Where does a Vine star go after Vine?”

A year later, Gilles said a creative developer at Vine messaged her to let her know she was now verified on the app.
Despite her status as a bona fide Vine star, Gilles found out about the app’s demise the same way the rest of the world did: via the company’s official announcement on October 27, 2016.
Vine was a place where any person, no matter how unfamiliar with video editing software, could be creative, and quickly share their creation with the world.
Not long after its launch, Vine integrated the front-facing camera into the app, unofficially birthing the Vine star.
By February 2014, he was ready to grow his star power exponentially by engaging in brand deals and participating in MagCon, a “Meet and greet” convention that toured young Vine stars to meet their adoring fans.
At some point in Vine’s history, a divide emerged between people who were able to fit Vine into their lives and people who were able to make Vine their full-time jobs.
“There was this community called Black Vine, and they were honestly the trendsetters. This is a community that was very strong on Vine that did not get noticed,” said Drea KB, who found fame on Vine after her imitations of her Nigerian parents went viral.
At several points during her time on Vine, racist and misogynist online harassment became so bad that she resorted to not showing her face, favoring cleverly edited Vines instead. During one period of her not posting her face, a representative from Vine noticed the change and reached out to learn the reason behind it.

The orginal article.

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On top of the basic information collected by your smartphone and beamed back to the company that made your handset, there’s all the information collected by the apps you run too-the data that gets recorded and saved is down to an individual app’s privacy policies and the permissions you give it.
If you want to know exactly what an app is allowed to track on your Android phone, open the Settings app then go to Apps & notifications, choose an app, and select Permissions.
Google recently said it would be cracking down on apps without user data policies, but you’re still largely at the mercy of app developers in terms of how your data gets used.
Using the app on your phone? Airbnb can track your location, get information about the device you’re using, and log the times you use the app.
Just when you think you know what an app is and isn’t tracking, you find out that Uber was secretly recording iPhone screen activity, supposedly to improve functionality with the Apple Watch app.
We’ve already spoken about editing individual app permissions, either through the Apps & permissions menu in Android Settings, or by tapping on an app name in iOS Settings.
Most of these permissions are self-explanatory, such as access to your calendars and contacts, but you can also control whether or not apps can pull data from the motion sensors in your phone-this is labelled Body sensors in Android and Motion & Fitness in iOS. As far as Google is concerned, you’ve got a whole host of options to manage, covering Google’s apps on Android, iOS, and everywhere else.
Individual apps may have specific settings and privacy options you can take advantage of, though most won’t, and few app developers will be as interested in collecting data about you as Google.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Scott From HQ: Profile”

The Quiz Daddy – born Scott Rogowsky – will be their host.
What makes someone a “Quiz Daddy” as opposed to a mere game-show host? In person at 7 p.m., slouched in a yellow HQ sweatshirt, Rogowsky is an affable but uncommanding presence; on my iPhone at nine, done up in a sharp suit, he exudes an outsize, off-kilter energy, all raised eyebrows and widened mouth.
Some find Rogowsky unlikable; I find him compulsively watchable.
Nine months ago, Rogowsky, 33, was ready to leave New York.
After a decade of struggling on the margins of the city’s comedy scene – not coincidentally, hosting a self-produced online talk show, Running Late With Scott Rogowsky – he planned to give L.A. a try.
In November, Rogowsky gave an interview to the Daily Beast.
For the record, Rogowsky would be decent on Jeopardy! After an early stall on the HMS Beagle, he mows through the round with assurance: The democratic constitution of what country was signed in 1978? Spain.
“Vine, at its peak, had 100 million users,” Rogowsky says.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How HQ Trivia Became the Best Worst Thing on the Internet”

The avatar for all those feelings is Scott Rogowsky, the game’s usual host and its breakout star.
Scott – players know him on a first-name basis – has been nicknamed “Quiz Daddy” by his fans.
The moments in the game between the actual presentation of questions – when Scott is explaining the rules, making jokes, or dropping Phish references – can be excruciating.
After a few plays, Scott ingratiates himself into your psyche in a third-grade crush kind of way.
Only after playing a game without Scott – a rotating crew of lackluster substitute hosts occasionally fills in – does his brilliance at his job become obvious: his unwavering eye contact; his punning proficiency; his confidence and coolness under pressure; his belief in himself, and in the game.
Scott’s folk hero status was cemented by yet another unforced error by the HQ team.
The bizarre exchange only endeared players to Scott more.
He may play our trivia overlord onscreen, but on some level, he, too, is a slave to HQ. Now whenever a not-Scott host appears, the chat that unspools beneath the game erupts in displeasure: “NOOOO.” “It’s not Scott.” “Where is Scott.” “Free Scott.” “#NOTMYHOST.”.

The orginal article.