Creative agency Virtue introduces genderless voice Q to challenge biases in technology

Creative agency Virtue introduces genderless voice Q to challenge biases in technology

Siri, Alexa, Google Assistant, Cortana and Bixby — almost all virtual assistants have something in common. Their default voices are women’s, though the role that plays in reinforcing gender stereotypes has been long documented, even inspiring the dystopian romance “Her.” Virtue, the creative agency owned by publisher Vice, wants to challenge the trend with a…

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Mangrove makes a first move into Portugal with $1.2M into Attentive, alongside Indico

Mangrove makes a first move into Portugal with $1.2M into Attentive, alongside Indico

Attentive, a Techstars Boulder alumnus, is closing a $1.2 million seed round co-led by Lisbon-based Indico Capital Partners and Luxembourg-based Mangrove Capital Partners. This also marks Mangrove’s first-ever investment into a Portugal-based startup. The southern-European country has surged as a European startup destination with the launch of new funds like Indico, acting as host to…

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Ola raises $300M as part of a new electric vehicle partnership with Hyundai and Kia

Ola raises $300M as part of a new electric vehicle partnership with Hyundai and Kia

Ride-hailing platform Ola announced today that it has raised $300 million from Hyundai and Kia as part of a strategic partnership focused on electric vehicle development. This brings the company’s total raised to $3.8 billion according to Crunchbase. Ola’s last funding was announced just three weeks ago, when the company said it had raised $56…

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Tristan O’Tierney, who helped develop Square’s original payment app, has passed away

Tristan O’Tierney, who helped develop Square’s original payment app, has passed away

Tristan O’Tierney, a co-founder of the payments company Square, has passed away at age 35. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, O’Tierney died last weekend in Florida of addiction-related causes after a hospital was unable to revive him. In the Chron’s piece, it reports that Square co-founders Jack Dorsey and Jim McKelvey hired O’Tierney to…

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Google’s next Doodle uses AI to generate music in the style of Johann Sebastian Bach

Google’s next Doodle uses AI to generate music in the style of Johann Sebastian Bach

Google’s Doodles are often elaborate creations, but the upcoming Doodle to celebrate the birthday of composer Johann Sebastian Bach is positively baroque. With the help of artificial intelligence, the interactive Doodle allows users to generate harmonies for any melody they input in the style of the famous 18th century composer. Google used machine learning to…

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Security researcher warns of power company customers’ passwords being stored in the clear, software provider responds with lawyer-letter

Security researcher warns of power company customers’ passwords being stored in the clear, software provider responds with lawyer-letter

SEDC is an Atlanta-based company that provides back-ends for utility companies; a security researcher discovered that the company stored his password in the clear. The company’s products have more than 15,000,000 users, whose logins and passwords are potentially also stored in plaintext. When the researcher alerted the company about this, the company ignored them, then…

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