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Pentagon assesses vetoing personal use of GPS after secret bases are revealed

US Secretary of Defense James Mattis is studying the possibility of banning agency officials from using electronic gadgets with GPS since they may be a “threat to the security” of the country.

Mattis had already considered the ban but decided to give serious consideration to the issue after the announcement last week that the use of an application had revealed several secret facilities.

In November last year, Strava, responsible for the development of applications related to the sports activity, released a heat map of the routes made by users between 2015 and 2017.

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The alert, however, came only this past weekend when one of the users noticed the unusual location of several of these routes, some in high-security regions or close to armed conflict, and decided to publish the discovery on the internet.

Other users entered the “game” and found routes in inhospitable regions, which could only be from exercises performed by military personnel operating in facilities known to the public.

Applying the same standard, users were able to identify secret military bases in the US and other countries.

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Although the map does not offer actual images of the installations, the drawings formed by the paths allow identifying several relevant information, such as the entry of the bases.

Pentagon spokeswoman Carla Gleason, speaking on the possibility of banning the use of this type of device, has simply said that the Department of Defense takes the threats to national security seriously and always reviews additional measures.

Should the ban be applied, the measure would affect not only the military abroad but also those working in the country and the approximately 22,000 Defense Department staff.

Nintendo Switch exceeds 10 million units sold in nine months

The Japanese company Nintendo sold more than 10 million units of its Nintendo Switch console in the last nine months, boosted by the launch of new iconic games and surpassing the number that the company had set for the end of the year.

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Nintendo, which launched its next-generation Switch platform in March, set out to overcome the ten million barriers by the end of 2017. However, it reached those numbers a month earlier, the company said in a statement.

With less than two weeks to go before Christmas, the Japanese company proposed to export more units, the statement said, with sales expected to be boosted later this year.

Sales of this console were boosted by its growing game catalogs, which incorporates some popular titles such as “Super Mario Odyssey” and “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild”, a bet by the Japanese company to recover some of its emblematic sagas.

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The Switch works like a home console when you connect to the TV via a dock, but also as a portable device, which gives you the ability to continue the game from the same point immediately and everywhere.

By 2018, Nintendo plans to double Switch’s production, tracking the sales figures recorded by other consoles of the company, and expanding its catalog with games like Kirby Star Allies, another of its classics.

From these results, Nintendo has revised up its provisions for the current year, which will end on March 31, 2018, where it expects to net profit of 85 billion yen (643 million euros), almost double that its previous estimate, although 20% below that of 2017.

Zuckerberg wants to protect Facebook users from attacks and abuse in 2018

American Mark Zuckerberg, considered a programming genius, proposed by 2018 to “fix Facebook”, a company he is the founder and CEO of, and protect users from attacks, abuse and interference.

This is the challenge that the famous executive, 33 years, details in the first message posted this year on his social network.

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“Every year I challenge myself to learn something new … and in this I will focus Facebook’s work on solving very important issues such as protecting our community from abuses and hateful attacks, defending it against interferences from other countries, and ensuring that the time dedicated to Facebook is well spent. ”

Zuckerberg acknowledges that his company “makes a lot of mistakes” and will not be able to fix them all, but agrees to work during 2018 to improve the running and smooth running of its popular business.

The young businessman, who founded Facebook in 2004, decided in 2009 to set concrete goals for the following year.

Social networks were heavily criticized for their lack of response to the so-called “false news” and piracy, some from Russian territory, as allegedly occurred in the 2016 election process that brought Donald Trump to the White House.

Among Zuckerberg’s New Year’s resolutions in the last decade have been learning Chinese (Mandarin), meeting a person outside the Facebook everyday, reading a book every 15 days, and building an artificial intelligence robot to organize their home.

Create app to make psychological therapy online

With this app couples therapies are made through the mobile phone.

 

It seems like a science fiction film idea, but new technologies already allow “go” to psychological therapy online. Talkspace is the first app for psychological therapy with which couples can count on certified professionals to help improve their relationship. We tell you how it works.

Virtual therapies the future of psychology?

The comfortable chairs of the psychological consultations are over because now you can do therapy from the place you most want, your bed, your sofa or even the park that you like to go for a walk. Talkspace is a new app designed to change the concept of psychologist-patient contact, making it the way of communication of today: virtual communication.

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The idea was born in the United States, and if it works, which seems to be what is happening, it probably ends up spreading to other countries. The mobile application has more than 1,000 certified professional therapists, who are available to the patient by chat or video conference, depending on the payment plan to which they are subscribed. Because, of course, this online psychological therapy app is not free. Individual therapies cost $ 32 a week, a much lower price than a physical consultation with a therapist.

The first thing that the app does is to make a small questionnaire to the patient to obtain an evaluation and thus be able to derive it with the most appropriate professional, which you can change at any time if it does not meet your expectations. Once you have chosen the payment plan you will start an online psychology therapy where you can chat whenever you feel like. If you want to write daily you can do it, since the therapists are committed to answering once or twice a day. Of course, you can arrange weekly or daily appointments, depending on the plan you use.

But individual therapy is not the only option in Talkspace. Couples with problems who need professional help can do therapy for $ 59 per week and those who want connections through live videos can do so for $ 99 per week.

couples therapy application

In addition, it has specialized psychological therapies such as couples therapy, therapies focused on the LGTB community or war veterans. As the company’s website states: “According to the National Association of Mental Illness (NAMI), LGBT people are almost 3 times more likely than others to experience a mental health condition, such as major depression or of generalized anxiety”, due to the social stigma with which they face most of their lives.

Even if you know someone who needs a little help, you can send them a Talkspace gift card to start their own psychological therapy. Awesome, right?

It may seem strange to many still, but the truth is that virtual communication is a reality that millions of people live daily. In fact, it is no coincidence that the universe of online dating will become the most common way to find a partner in the future.

For some, an app like Talkspace can be a way to help many people with prejudices and fears towards psychologists to go to a professional therapist. And is that being able to go to a psychologist at any time of the day and anonymously for less price than usual can be a hook for many people who need help?

We only ask ourselves three things: can online therapy be as effective as traditional therapy? To what extent will therapists be able to recognize people’s feelings, their frustrations, and concerns through written chat messages? We all know that people tend to lie on social networks, will we also do it in an online therapy?

We can not answer these questions, rather than reflect on them and weigh for ourselves what it is that we would really like to receive in our life, whether a traditional psychological therapy or an online one. Meanwhile, we have no choice but to wait and see how this revolutionary app works and if it ever comes to our country, we might consider trying it out. What do you think?

In addition, you may also be interested in knowing when it is convenient to go to a relationship or the best tips to negotiate as a couple without getting hurt in the discussions.

Startups unite technology and citizen participation to promote social impact

In times of political crisis and social disbelief, two Brazilian startups awarded by Google launched strategies for citizen participation through technological tools: an application for signing bills and a method of rounding up a market account for change to go to NGOs.

Both initiatives won the second edition of the Challenge of Social Impact, conducted in 2016 by Google in Brazil to support non-profit organizations that use technology to generate social impact, in which each project received R $ 1.5 million.

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One of them, Arredondar, is a São Paulo startup of philanthropic donations that allows consumers to round off payments in physical stores and donate change to NGOs.

The project has partnered with over 530 stores and, since winning the Social Impact Challenge, has already raised more than $ 300,000 for organizations.

“Arredondar selects and accredits NGOs from diverse causes, including health, education, citizenship and diversity, with the differential of transparency in online accountability to the consumer that contributed,” Efe told startup operations director Maria Berer .

The project came from a group of people who sought different ways to raise money for philanthropy six years ago and is not yet self-sufficient, with Google’s award as their main source of funding and having the collections published in real time on the site (www.arredondar.com). .org.br).

The São Paulo startup raised about R $ 7 million in donations to 40 NGOs with approximately 70 thousand people impacted.

The outlook towards the end of the year is to expand the portfolio of benefited organizations to 70, be included in new means of payment, and reach out to more market networks that offer visibility to action.

The model is designed for retailers, where customers decide freely whether or not to donate, and so the focus is to train attendants so they are “drivers” of this type of donation.

“Companies contribute to transform how people see the act of donating in Brazil, because NGOs are not in everyone’s daily life, and this highlight of their work is to show an invisible Brazil being brought into a buying and donation relationship,” Berer said.

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With the same perspective of social impact through technology, ITS Rio startup in March launched the “Mudamos”, application of signing of bills of popular initiative that had more than 500 thousand downloads in less than two months without any advertisement .

“We live a deep crisis of confidence and one of the ways to solve it is to use technology to propagate democracy,” Ronaldo Lemos, director of ITS Rio, told Efe.

“We were number one in the online application stores and we were surprised, because this shows interest in civic participation. The result was the sending of seven thousand bills to the Congress,” he argued.

Users can also suggest bills by the platform created with the aim of changing the current situation, in which Brazil has no popular initiative bill effectively dealt with as such, due to the difficulty of verifying paper signatures.

“The app is voluntary and the key point is that there is a sense of detachment from the society of its representatives, so any way to have their voices heard or participation in the decisions make people want to participate,” said Lemos.

“We believe technology is a way to restore confidence with our representatives,” he added.

For the winners, Google announced on August 14 that it will make a new investment of R $ 1 million to be distributed in media for development of the actions.

South Korean company develops application to “clone” celebrities

Interact on the cell phone camera with the avatar of a famous player or actress, the boyfriend who lives far away or, why not, a deceased relative. A South Korean company makes this happen with an application that blends artificial intelligence and 3D technology.

“It all started as an idea to be able to include celebrities in videos and photos captured with the smartphone,” Elrois, the company that developed this product called “With me” in its offices, told Efe Agency. south of Seoul.

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The insanity that the so-called “idols” (K-pop stars or popular telenovelas) awakened in South Korea led Elrois, founded in 2013, to work on creating an application that would in principle be planned in English and for a global audience.

Although the celebrities were the origin of the idea, the development team began to think that it would also be fun to use “With me” to be able to insert in photos, for example, “a friend who could not come to a trip or a party, “they explain.

“So I thought about my grandmother, who passed away recently, and commented that it would be great to scan your photos so that you can put them into current images,” comments the development team’s Lim Eun-jin.

The group adopted the latter idea and published it on their development blog on the internet without thinking that the concept would get even stronger among the public and would generate debate.

“People started commenting on the network that looks like an app intended for an episode of ‘Black Mirror’ (British TV series that raises dystopian stories about the use of new technologies yet to be invented)!” Adds Lim between laughs.

Whether it’s to resurrect the dead or to appear kissing a famous singer, “With me” will be available to smartphone users later this year, says Kwak Ji-hoon, manager of the planning team.

The application uses a 3D scan, to which is added what they call an equipment system – a three-dimensional “skeleton” that is used as the basis for animating the person or object scanned – and an artificial intelligence (AI) program.

Kwak says that in order to create an avatar, it is possible to use a 3D scanning device (including those that already exist on some high-end phones or that can be purchased as an application) and then send it to the company’s website and then download it to the phone.

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The user then enters his name and draws a “selfie” so that the avatar’s AI is able to address him and identify him through facial recognition.

The result is a virtual clone that is able to guess the user’s age surprisingly.

With a click on the screen you can converse with the avatar to ask for a kiss, say “I love you” or also communicate that we are angry with him.

The digital clone understands the voice commands in an instant and responds by joining the fists, getting angry (also in English) or posing with an arched arm to form a heart with the user’s own arm (a typical gesture among young Asian couples in photographs).

“There are a lot of applications to create avatars, but we are the first company to market the possibility of interacting with one of these clones,” says Kwak, whose company hopes to use this technology in other fields (such as in video games) to two or three years.

T-Mobile and Sprint close deals for possible merger

Two of America’s largest cellphone operators, T-Mobile and Sprint, are closing deals that have been underway for weeks for a possible merger, The Wall Street Journal said on Saturday.

T-Mobile, a subsidiary of German group Deutsche Telekom, and Sprint, controlled by the Japanese group SoftBank, are the third and fourth companies in the sector behind Verizon and AT & T. The new company that would emerge from the union would have more than 100 million customers.

Directors of Sprint and Deutsche Telekom met in Tokyo this weekend to discuss the merger but failed to reach an agreement and decided to terminate the deal.

John Legere, president and chief executive officer of T-Mobile in the United States, wrote on Twitter that the companies jointly finalized talks to discuss the purchase of Sprint.

“The prospect of joining Sprint was attractive for a variety of reasons, including the potential to create significant benefits for customers and shareholder value,” the executive said in a statement.

“However, it has always been clear that an agreement should result in a higher long-term value for T-Mobile shareholders compared to our outstanding stand-alone income and our track record,” added Legere in the note.

Sprint chief executive Marcelo Claure acknowledged that the benefits would have helped the deal give Deutsche Telekom control of the new company, according to The Wall Street Journal. However, the chief executive of SoftBank, Masayoshi Son, did not agree to relinquish such control.

Instead of pushing ahead with the merger, SoftBank now plans to buy more shares of Sprint in the open market – the company already has 80% – but staying below 85%, which would trigger a takeover bid, according to the Journal “.

Sprint and T-Mobile had already evaluated a merger in 2014, a negotiation that also has not advanced. In 2011, US officials felt it was best for the industry that there were four carriers in the country instead of three.

Apple introduces iPhone X with facial recognition and screen without start button

Apple introduced the iPhone X on Tuesday, the most powerful smartphone ever launched by the company, with several new features such as the inclusion of a facial recognition sensor and an “infinite” screen, with a new resolution, made possible by the withdrawal of the traditional button.

The new smartphone was unveiled today by Apple chief executive Tim Cook at an event that also served to officially inaugurate the company’s new headquarters, Apple Park, in the city of Cupertino, California, United States.

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The iPhone X is the name of the device with which Apple celebrates the ten years of the launch of the iPhone, an essential device in the social and technological revolution of smartphones.

Cook said today that the first iPhone model, released in 2007, represented a revolution in mobile technology and said the iPhone X will set the stage for the next decade.

The iPhone X screen covers virtually the entire front surface of the device, which has no traditional “home” button since the first device launched by Apple, and eliminates the edges that diminish the touchscreen surface.

In addition, the iPhone X will come equipped with a super-retina display with OLED technology, resolution of 2436×1125 pixels and 458 dots per inch of density, the largest of an Apple smartphone.

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Another of the great news of the iPhone X is the introduction of Face ID, a new form of access of the smartphone based on the facial recognition of users and which represents an important evolution over the Touch ID, which used digital.

The Touch ID is still on the device, but with the removal of the start button, it now runs across the screen.

This facial recognition technology will also be harnessed by animoji, a personality version of the emoji that will be created from the expressions of the people registered by the camera.

The device will be loaded wirelessly from a technology called Apple by AirPower, a base that can simultaneously load AirPods, the company’s wireless headsets, and also the new Apple Watch Series 3, presented today by the company.

The iPhone X will be sold in the United States for $ 999. The pre-order will start on October 27th and shipments will begin by Apple on November 3rd.

The great year of video games with new releases after the summer

Nintendo has rallied with the brutal success of “Switch” and Microsoft intends to eat ground with Sony with the Xbox One X

 

The 2017 is a big year as far as gaming is concerned . Nintendo has rallied with the brutal success of Switch and Microsoft intends to eat Sony with the Xbox One X, the most powerful console ever created and presented at E3 in Los Angeles. Two events that anticipate a hot autumn and winter season when it comes to launching new titles for the holiday season. These are the most anticipated:

Mario Odyssey. The titles featuring the most emblematic plumber of Nintendo are always a sales success. This year, the mustachioed hero will leave his usual kingdom to travel cities, deserts or valleys. The title, which will arrive on October 27.

 Star Wars : Battlefront 2. The battery of films about Star Wars comes accompanied by a new video game thatallow battlesrevive one of the most popular sagas planet. In the multiplayer mode there will be possibility to face the squadrons of ships in the outer space and we will be able to control, in the different missions, personages like Yoda, Luke Skywalker or Kylo Rein. It will be available from November 17 on Xbox, PC and PS4. They have not yet advanced that is compatible with PlaystationVR.
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Uncharted: The Lost Legacy . At first, it was raised as an extension for the title Uncharted 4 but once put to work the story was gaining body and Naugthy Dog decided to launch a new and complete video game as a result. For the first time the title will have two female protagonists, Chloe and Nadine Ross, who already appeared in the second and the fourth installment of the saga.

FIFA 18. A classic sports games. Cristiano Ronaldo will be the protagonist of FIFA 18, which will have versions for PS4, Xbox, PC, Android and Nintendo Switch. E game will arrive, if everything goes on schedule, on September 29 to the market.

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Call of Duty. It is another of the sagas with more followers of the world. Now return the next day November 3 with a game that takes back the origins of the series. In this case, Call of Duty: World War II puts the player in the shoes of a young soldier who next to his comrades in arms will have to face different missions of World War II. Scenarios and missions extend from the coast of Normandy to the forest of Hürtgen and show some of the most special moments of the war that put in check throughout Europe.

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Top sales consoles Japan (31-07 to 06-08): Nintendo Switch resumes the lead

Nintendo Switch

Nintendo Switch Returns to Highest Sales in Japan

After the fantastic and exciting sales week lived in Japan a few days ago, this week is somewhat more restrained in terms of numbers. Of course, we will see a series of changes in the highest positions, with Nintendo Switchheading again sales thanks to the almost 62,000 units that managed to sell during the last record. Nintendo’s hybrid console once again leads the list, although it does so with little difference from the second best-selling platform. In this specific case, we are talking about the great  Nintendo 3DS family , which has stayed very close to the 61,000 consoles sold by combining all available models.

Nintendo 3DS notebook family stays very close to repeat lead

Far from the head positions is the PlayStation Vita system  , which goes back down in sales to the little more than 4,700 consoles sold. Sony’s portable platform can not keep up with the top three and is still far behind. The fifth position is for Wii U , the system of desktop of Nintendo , that has carried out a small rise in the sales until placing with 158 units sold. The sixth position is for PlayStation 3 , that after a decade in active begins to dilute in Japanese territory. Sony’s third desktop has closed the record with 96 consoles sold. The seventh and final position is for Xbox One , the console from Microsoft , which closes with 90 consoles sold; Has stayed close to not occupy said square.

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Nintendo Switch(61.933 Units) 

New Nintendo 2DS XL (33.871) + New Nintendo 3DS / XL (23.278) + Nintendo 2DS (3,740) – 60,889 Units

PlayStation 4 (43,862) + PlayStation 4 Pro (9,077) – 52,939 Units

PlayStation Vita – 4,773 Units

Wii U – 158 Units

PlayStation 3 – 96 Units

Xbox One – 90 Units 

Last week’s sales in Japan ((24-07-30-07)

New Nintendo 2DS XL (110.963) + New Nintendo 3DS / XL (27.957) + Nintendo 2DS (3,680) – 142,600 Units

PlayStation 4 (82,368) + PlayStation 4 Pro (10,980) – 93,348 Units

Nintendo Switch – 89,314 Units

PlayStation Vita – 4,967 Units

Wii U – 142 Units

PlayStation 3 – 121 Units

Xbox One – 94 Units