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Recommended Reading: The political media machine on Facebook

Inside Facebook’s (Totally
Insane, Unintentionally
Gigantic, Hyperpartisan)
Political-Media Machine

John Herrman,
The New York Times Magazine

A barrage of political links, ads and other content has filled up your News Feed over the last few months. With each new election, the amount of noise seems to get worse and now that we have two candidates who both have quite a list of shortcomings, the chatter is at an all-time high. The New York Times Magazine takes a deep dive into how Facebook is serving as a massive political media machine and its influence on democracy in the US.

Dear Internet: It’s Time to Fix This Mess You Made
Wired

In a week that saw actress Leslie Jones attacked online once more, Wired penned an open letter to the internet to plead for an end online harassment.

Pandora Looks for a Way Out of the Doldrums. Cue Questlove.
Ben Sisario, The New York Times

Will teaming up with The Roots’ drummer and DJ Questlove give Pandora a much-needed boost as it preps to launch a streaming service? The New York Times has details on the partnership.

​Tiger Electronics Took on the Game Boy with Devices as Powerful as Calculators
Ernie Smith, Motherboard

Tiger Electronics was a mainstay in handheld gaming with simple gadgets that ran on two AA batteries. This piece from Motherboard offers a bit of nostalgia for those of us who played them and history lesson for those who didn’t.

Def Jam Can’t Compete With Apple
Justin Charity, The Ringer

After Frank Ocean independently released his long-awaited album Blond as an Apple Music exclusive, there are a lot of opinions about what this means for record labels. As The Ringer notes, Apple Music has industry experts like Jimmy Iovine running the show which could lure more popular artists looking to cut ties to a label.

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Microsoft’s Seeing AI app for the blind now reads handwriting

Artificial intelligence took center stage at Microsoft's AI Summit in San Francisco on Wednesday. Aside from announcing AI smarts for a range of software -- from Bing to Office 365 -- the tech titan is also ramping up its Seeing AI app for iOS, which uses computer vision to audibly help blind and visually impaired people to see the world around them. According to Microsoft, it's nabbed 100,000 downloads since its launch in the US earlier this year, which convinced the tech titan to bring it to 35 countries in total, including the EU.

It's also getting a bunch of new features. The app now boasts more currency recognition, adding British pounds, US dollars, Canadian dollars, and Euros to its tally. Going beyond the color in a scene, it can also spot the color of specific objects, like clothes. Plus, it's no longer restricted to just short printed text, with handwriting recognition now part of its skill set. You can also customize the voice that it uses to speak its observations out loud, and set how fast it talks.

Finally, a musical light detector alerts you to the light in an environment with an audible tone -- Microsoft claims the tool will save users from having to touch a hot bulb or LED battery to check if it's on. Despite the big update, there's still no word on an Android launch.

Source: Microsoft

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