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State of the Art: Why Jeff Bezos Should Push for Nobody to Get as Rich as Jeff Bezos

“We have technology that has allowed us to create vastly more wealth for society,” said Erik Brynjolfsson, director of the M.I.T. Initiative on the Digital Economy. “But there’s no economic law that says that these benefits will be distributed evenly — and it’s worked out that some people have gotten most of the benefits and a lot of other people have been left behind.”But economics isn’t destiny, he said.“Technology has led to some of this concentration, but since it makes the pie bigger, you could make everyone better off simultaneously — you could make the poor better off and the rich better off — and whether we…

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The Most Fun (and Useful) Things You Can Do With an Amazon Echo or Google Home

Take a deep breathNeed a moment to yourself? Try meditating or relaxing with both devices with a few free, guided meditations from Headspace. On Google, you can say, “Hey Google, talk to Headspace”; on Alexa, request “Alexa, open Headspace.” If you’re a subscriber, you can continue a meditation from your phone onto your device. If you want general meditation content, you can say something along the lines of “Alexa, help me relax,” or “O.K. Google, help me meditate.”Both devices can also help you calm down with commands like “O.K. Google, help me relax,” and sounds like rain falling will play — or white noise if you’re using…

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Inside Facebook’s Election ‘War Room’

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Sandwiched between Building 20 and Building 21 in the heart of Facebook’s campus, an approximately 25-foot-by-35-foot conference room is under construction.Thick cords of blue wiring hang from the ceiling, ready to be attached to window-size computer monitors on 16 desks. On one wall, a half-dozen televisions will be tuned to CNN, MSNBC, Fox News and other major networks. A small paper sign with orange lettering taped to the glass door describes what’s being built: “War Room.”Although it is not much to look at now, as of next week the space will be Facebook’s headquarters for safeguarding elections. More than 300 people across the…

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Europe to Investigate Amazon’s Dual Role of Merchant and Platform

For many independent merchants who sell their goods on Amazon, there has long been deep concern that if the e-commerce giant saw a particular product selling well, the company would duplicate it, but at a lower price.The European Union’s antitrust chief said on Wednesday that there may be reason for worry.Margrethe Vestager, the bloc’s competition commissioner, announced the start of an investigation into whether Amazon is unfairly using data collected about third-party sellers to make its own decisions about products to sell — information that would give it a potentially anticompetitive edge.The announcement keeps Europe at the center of a debate about how to regulate global technology…

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A Wedding Ring With a Dirty Little Secret

Chloe Stein, an executive chef and caterer, remembers fondly her fairy tale engagement in early September 2016.She and her then-boyfriend, Deepak Panjwani, a data analyst at Bloomberg, were vacationing in Sweden. They took a day trip to Drottningholm Palace, the private residence of the Swedish royal family, and toured the vast 16th-century gardens.At a scenic overlook, Mr. Panjwani surprised Ms. Stein by proposing marriage. But instead of presenting a traditional diamond solitaire, he held out a “smog free ring,” a piece of designer jewelry that has come to symbolize the fight against urban pollution.The ring is made of hundreds of thousands of gallons of pollution sucked from…

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The Big Secret of Celebrity Wealth (Is That No One Knows Anything)

Near the end of the debate between New York governor Andrew Cuomo and Cynthia Nixon, his Democratic primary challenger, one of the moderators prefaced a question to Ms. Nixon by referencing her net worth. “Given your personal wealth, reported to be in the tens of millions of dollars — ” CBS anchorman Maurice DuBois started before Ms. Nixon interrupted: “ — which is not true.”“It’s been reported,” he said. “You can’t trust Google,” Ms. Nixon said, knowing everyone does.The net worth of Cynthia Nixon, who would go on to lose that primary, has indeed been reported at $60 million. It’s been reported by the New York Observer,…

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Tech We’re Using: Windows on How Cities Change Can Be All Too Captivating

AdvertisementTech We’re UsingTechnology is crowding curbs with ride hailers and keeping homeowners fixated on housing values. Here are the tools that Emily Badger, a writer for The Upshot, uses to analyze the ripple effects. ImageEmily Badger, a reporter for The Upshot in Washington, likes Google Street View’s time-lapse feature, which can show a neighborhood’s transformation since 2007.CreditCreditTing Shen for The New York TimesSept. 19, 2018How do New York Times journalists use technology in their jobs and in their personal lives? Emily Badger, who writes about cities and urban policy for The Upshot in Washington, discussed the tech she’s using.Q. As a writer for The Upshot, you do…

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Trilobites: Elephant Tusk DNA Helps Track Ivory Poachers

AdvertisementTrilobitesResearchers are examining the genetic data in seized elephant ivory to trace it back to the animals’ homelands and connect it to global trafficking crimes. ImageAfrican elephants in Botswana. Researchers are turning to examining the DNA of elephant tusks to determine where they're being poached.CreditCreditArt Wolfe/Art Wolfe Inc.By Karen WeintraubSept. 19, 2018Poachers are killing 40,000 elephants a year and with a global elephant population of just 400,000, it doesn’t take a mathematician to figure out that there is an urgent need to stop the killing.But it’s hard to catch poachers in the act. They operate over a wide area, move just a few elephant tusks at a…

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INTERNETTING WITH AMANDA HESS: We Answer Your ‘Internetting’ Questions About Vagina Eggs, Time Lords and Steroid Rumors

AdvertisementINTERNETTING WITH AMANDA HESSIt’s “Internetting After Dark,” the show about the show. There’s a cat in here!Sept. 19, 2018[embedded content]Welcome back to “Internetting After Dark.” We’ve been hard at work harvesting the best “Internetting” comments from across the web on the topics of unboxing videos, extremely online bodybuilding, and digital mysticism.We are learning a lot about the time lord perspective! Also: about the fake feminine mojo of vagina eggs and the very real joys of milk-related songcraft. With me as always is Shane O’Neill, the intrepid editor of “Internetting.” And back by popular demand: our chief feline correspondent, Wanda.Questions? Comments? Leave them on our YouTube page or…

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Tech Fix: Apple Watch Series 4 Review: Faster, Bigger, With a Promise to Be Healthier

A few days ago, I sat in a medical recliner at the University of California, San Francisco. A cardiologist placed 10 stickerlike electrodes onto my limbs and chest and then connected the wires to a dated-looking contraption with a screen and a keyboard on a cart.About a minute later, a printer produced a chart of my heart’s electrical activity on red graph paper. The procedure I had undergone was an electrocardiogram, or an EKG, which is used to diagnose cardiac problems like arrhythmia and heart attacks. I took the test to gain a better understanding of the implications of the Apple Watch Series 4, Apple’s new smart…

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