India's No. 1 Affordable Computer Franchise (ISO Certified, Govt. Approved) | Get approval in 10 Hours. For Inquiries: CALL +91-9774064470

Bits: The Week in Tech: How Google and Facebook Spawned Surveillance Capitalism

Each week, technology reporters and columnists from The New York Times review the week’s news, offering analysis and maybe a joke or two about the most important developments in the tech industry. Want this newsletter in your inbox? Sign up here.Greetings, I’m Natasha Singer, your resident privacy reporter. And I’m writing to you from wintry New York City as the government shutdown increases financial pressure on federal workers and the tech elites jet off to Davos, Switzerland, to hobnob at the World Economic Forum.For the last few years, the forum has been heralding the “Fourth Industrial Revolution.” That’s the idea that today’s digital innovations are generating entire…

Continue Reading

Nonfiction: Hacker for Hire

BREAKING AND ENTERING The Extraordinary Story of a Hacker Called AlienBy Jeremy N. Smith 292 pp. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. $28.When the F.B.I. warned the Democratic National Committee that hackers had broken into its system before the 2016 elections, the help desk dismissed it as a potential prank call. And when the Russians used a phony Google alert to try to snatch the email password from Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, the I.T. guy incorrectly said the warning was legitimate.In “Breaking and Entering: The Extraordinary Story of a Hacker Called ‘Alien,’” Jeremy N. Smith tells a tale of computer intrigue, but not through the eyes of the black hats…

Continue Reading

Profiles in Science: The Yoda of Silicon Valley

For half a century, the Stanford computer scientist Donald Knuth, who bears a slight resemblance to Yoda — albeit standing 6-foot-4 and wearing glasses — has reigned as the spirit-guide of the algorithmic realm. He is the author of “The Art of Computer Programming,” a continuing four-volume opus that is his life’s work. The first volume debuted in 1968, and the collected volumes (sold as a boxed set for about $250) were included by American Scientist in 2013 on its list of books that shaped the last century of science — alongside a special edition of “The Autobiography of Charles Darwin,” Tom Wolfe’s “The Right Stuff,” Rachel…

Continue Reading

After Protest, Booksellers Are Victorious Against Amazon Subsidiary

SAN FRANCISCO — A worldwide strike by antiquarian booksellers against an Amazon subsidiary proved successful after two days, with the retailer apologizing and saying it would cancel the actions that prompted the protest.It was a rare concerted uprising against any part of Amazon by any of its millions of suppliers, leading to an even rarer capitulation. Even the book dealers said they were surprised at the sudden reversal by AbeBooks, the company’s secondhand and rare bookselling network.The uprising, which involved nearly 600 booksellers in 27 countries removing about four million books, was set off by the retailer’s decision to cut off stores in five countries: the Czech…

Continue Reading

Nonfiction: Where Trolls Reigned Free: A New History of Reddit

WE ARE THE NERDS The Birth and Tumultuous Life of Reddit, the Internet’s Culture Laboratory By Christine Lagorio-Chafkin Illustrated. 492 pp. Hachette Books. $28.Five years ago, it seemed like a swell idea for Mark Zuckerberg to connect every human being on the planet, because we would all sit around singing “Kumbaya” and ordering from Amazon. Journalists revered Twitter for giving a megaphone to oppressed groups like, well, journalists. Google, figuring it had solved the problems of the living, launched a venture to defeat death.Even then, at a moment of techno-optimism we are unlikely to see again in our lifetimes, Reddit was a toxic swamp. It was the…

Continue Reading

Computer Stories: A.I. Is Beginning to Assist Novelists

BERKELEY, Calif. — Robin Sloan has a collaborator on his new novel: a computer.The idea that a novelist is someone struggling alone in a room, equipped with nothing more than determination and inspiration, could soon be obsolete. Mr. Sloan is writing his book with the help of home-brewed software that finishes his sentences with the push of a tab key.It’s probably too early to add “novelist” to the long list of jobs that artificial intelligence will eliminate. But if you watch Mr. Sloan at work, it is quickly clear that programming is on the verge of redefining creativity.Mr. Sloan, who won acclaim for his debut, “Mr. Penumbra’s…

Continue Reading

State of the Art: Silicon Valley’s Keystone Problem: ‘A Monoculture of Thought’

Consider, for instance, how women are treated in “The Big Disruption.” Anahata is egregiously misogynistic, which Ms. Powell said was inspired by her time at Badoo more than Google (though Google, of course, has had its own well-documented struggles hiring more women).There are no women of importance in Anahata’s ranks, and the company exploits its few female employees in ways that make Uber look good in comparison. Still, the only female character in the book, a Friedan-spouting feminist, buys into the company completely. She’s happy to paper over Anahata’s problems by offering some high-minded, fanciful justification for terrible behavior today — because to get ahead in tech…

Continue Reading

Nonfiction: The Father of Personal Computing Who Was Also a Terrible Dad

The reader is left to wonder whether Lisa is fully aware of just how disturbing this dynamic was. In another instance that would have benefited from perspective, she recounts a moment when she is 14 and tries to be close to Steve by sitting, uneasily, on his lap, trembling with fear, excitement and a “quaking electric love,” wishing they could relate like normal daughters and fathers. At one point she calls his behavior “inappropriate,” but at the end of the book she assures him that he had been “good about sex.” Was she trying to appease the aggressor, or does she not understand the scenes she has…

Continue Reading

What to Read While You Wait for That Memoir of Steve Jobs to Hit Stores

AdvertisementLisa Brennan-Jobs’s “Small Fry” comes out Sept. 4. In the meantime, here are other memoirs about complicated family dynamics that you might want to pick up.By Susan EllingwoodAug. 24, 2018ImageCreditFrances F. Denny for The New York TimesIn her profile of Lisa Brennan-Jobs, Times reporter Nellie Bowles offers this insightful comment about Steve Jobs’s oldest daughter whose memoir, “Small Fry,” hits shelves next month: Ms. Brennan-Jobs wants readers to know that she didn’t intend the book to be a “tell-all exposé,” and that she “has absolved” her father for his vicious treatment of her.“Ms. Brennan-Jobs’s forgiveness is one thing,” writes Ms. Bowles. “What’s tricky is that she wants…

Continue Reading

Profile: In ‘Small Fry,’ Steve Jobs Comes Across as a Jerk. His Daughter Forgives Him. Should We?

‘I Hope Thanksgiving’s OK’None of that, of course, was imaginable when Ms. Brennan-Jobs was born on May 17, 1978, on a commune farm in Oregon. Her parents, who had met in high school in Cupertino, Calif., were both 23. Mr. Jobs arrived days after the birth and helped name her, but refused to acknowledge that he was the father. To support her family, Ms. Brennan cleaned houses and used government assistance. Only after the government sued Mr. Jobs did he agree to pay child support.“Small Fry” describes how Mr. Jobs slowly took a greater interest in his daughter, taking her skating and coming over to her house…

Continue Reading
  • 1
  • 2