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Big Tech agrees to pay hourly employee salaries affected by coronavirus plans

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Following Microsoft’s example last night, some of the largest technology companies in the United States have agreed to pay hourly wages to employees affected by the company’s continued response to the coronavirus outbreak.

It is correct that companies do so from a health and safety perspective and to ensure that hourly workers most affected by breaks and work shortages are not affected by events beyond their control.

As we reported today, Facebook is committed to paying its “contingent” workers. According to a report by Axios, Amazon, Google and Twitter join them. We have contacted Apple but have not yet received any comments.

In a statement to Axios, Amazon has made the same commitment to its employees.

“We will continue to pay all the hourly staff that supports our Seattle and Bellevue campus, from catering services to security personnel and caregivers, while our employees are asked to work from home,” the company said. “In addition, we will subsidize a month’s rent for small local businesses that operate in our own buildings to maintain them during that time.”

According to reports, Google and Twitter have made the same commitments.

Technology companies have assumed a leading role in this issue and have been praised by labor organizations for their position. However, organizers in the Bay Area and beyond are encouraging companies to cushion the blow that workers have to suffer from lost wages due to office closures.

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Good news: @Facebook, @Twitter, @Microsoft and @Google are committed to ensuring that service employees receive full payment for corona virus problems. Here is our statement:

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The problem even caught the attention of Virginia Democratic Senator Mark Warner, who is pressing concert economy companies Uber, Lyft, Postmates and DoorDash to compensate for coronavirus workers.

“I urge you to try to eliminate potential financial difficulties for your workers if they are sick or have to quarantine during this time,” Warner wrote. “To limit the spread of COVID-19, it is important that platform companies set a good example by assuming that economic uncertainties do not deter employees if they follow public health guidelines during the response.”

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Pixel 4a photo leaks indicate a simple budget phone

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These first rumors about Pixel 4a could only have some weight. Photo leaks on Twitter and Reddit seem to show Google’s next economic phone in nature, and seem to confirm the previous claims. The worn out prototype 4a in the images apparently has no facial recognition and the dual cameras of the normal Pixel 4 in favor of a more conventional fingerprint reader and a single rear camera. There is a pinhole camera for selfies in the front, and Google keeps the headphone jack for those who can’t justify Bluetooth headphones.

Snapshots do not show much more about what is in the phone, although an available memory log suggests that you should still be satisfied with 64 GB of non-expandable memory. A 5.7 or 5.8-inch screen is expected to be equipped with a medium-sized Snapdragon processor (probably 600 or 700 series) to keep costs low and extend battery life.

It is not certain when Pixel 4a could arrive, especially given the outbreak of the corona virus, which affects the production of many companies. Now that I / O is canceled, Google is certainly not linked to a specific start window. However, it is hard to imagine that Google will wait a long time. The Pixel 3a served not only as an entry point for the Google smartphone line, but also as a way to keep the series fresh and in the spotlight while the main pixel was still in the middle of the cycle.

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Jonathan Kraft makes an unpleasant compliment to Bill Belichick: “Machine Learning”

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BOSTON, Mass. – Soccer is not exactly known for being a leader in the world of sports analytics, but Patriot President Jonathan Kraft says that Bill Belichick’s own melancholic looks and short answers are behind the version of “machine learning” of the coach.

“I think if you want to use a soccer coach like Bill Belichick, who has been a soccer coach for 40 years, you may not call him data, but he has a steel trap in his head,” Kraft told Sloan Sports conference Friday analytics. “Every instance of everything you’ve seen: it won’t call it data and it won’t call it machine learning, but its brain is a machine and it’s machine learning. So you can call it old-school training – Bill probably wouldn’t call it machine learning, but that is exactly. “

Last season, Belichick, 67, told reporters that the analysis was not his “thing”, and that he puts “less than zero” emphasis on decision making.

“You can use these advanced websites wherever you want,” Belichick said in 2016. “I don’t know. I have no idea that I’ve never seen one. I don’t even want to look at one. I don’t care what they say … All metric pages and all that, I mean, I have no idea. You should ask a coach smarter than me. “

The annual Sloan conference, organized by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, discusses advances and problems in the sports analysis industry. Kraft spoke with Commissioner Don Garber in a panel discussion about the success story of Major League Soccer.

Regardless of whether Belichick actively uses advanced analysis or not, Kraft emphasized that it would be silly to completely ignore the progress of the industry.

“I think the data should be part of the decision-making aids in everything you do,” Kraft said. “If you’re not ready to understand what’s out there, put your team at a competitive disadvantage.”

Jonathan Kraft is co-owner of the New England Revolution of MLS with his father Robert Kraft, who also attended the annual sports technology summit here. The younger force talked about the differences in the way the two sports use and use the data.


“On the football side of the house, the data is not used as often [as in football] to capture the content game by game.” I know that people talk about it all the time, they still don’t, ”said Jonathan Kraft. “You could look at certain trends and other things and probabilities related to certain decision-making tools, but I would say that in football it is one of several ingredients that come into a game plan, while in football I am now for coaches who they believe in him. ” , I think it could even be the main one, one of the two or three main controllers. “

Kraft says that, unlike the patriots, the revolution was always up to date with the analyzes.

“On the football side of the house, we hired our first data analyst more than a decade ago. I think maybe we were the first team in the league to have one, ”he said. “We monitor the movement of each player on the field, how passes are made, how teams perform in different thirds, and so on.”

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The new Intel chip failure threatens encryption, but Macs are safe

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The vulnerabilities inherent in Intel chips have been a common problem in recent years, with fatal errors such as Meltdown, Specter and ZombieLoad that affect virtually all Intel-equipped devices.

In 2019, Positive Technologies security researchers discovered another problem with Intel chips. In particular, it is a vulnerability that affects the Intel converged security management engine, an important security feature in Intel technology and firmware that runs on Intel hardware.

In addition to loading and varying the BIOS and power management firmware, CSME also offers the “cryptographic base” for functions such as DRM (Digital Rights Management), TPM (Firmware-based Trusted Platform Module) technologies or the ID itself Intel enhanced privacy.

Intel released a patch in 2019 to fix the problem. However, Positive Technologies researchers have discovered that it is much worse than originally thought. New research published Thursday shows that the vulnerability could be exploited to recover a cryptographic root key, which could allow an attacker to access all the data on a device.

This could be a big problem for DRM protected media. If used aggressively, the error can be used to decrypt incoming or outgoing data traffic from the affected device. On a larger scale, it could be used on Intel-based servers.

Although Intel’s previous vulnerabilities affected Apple devices, this error does not affect newer Macs equipped with an Apple T1 or T2 chip. Because these chips are based on proprietary technology and are released before Intel chips, a user’s encryption keys are secure.

Of course, older Macs without a T-Series chip, or the current iMac family without the iMac Pro, may be vulnerable to exploitation, which may compromise FileVault encryption. The error is undetectable and Intel advises users to maintain the “physical possession” of their devices, since there is no way to use the attack vector remotely, for example, by clicking on an incorrect ad.

However, Intel notes that the tenth generation chips are safe from this. The vulnerability and others that they like are also one of the many possible reasons why Apple may soon switch its Macs to ARM-based processors.

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