Australian retailers are stopping the use of facial recognition technology, more US states are working on laws to control social media and Intel announces it is produce chips for Taiwan’s MediaTek.
It’s all the tech news that’s trending right now, welcome to Hashtag Trending. Today is Tuesday, July 26, and I’m your host, Samira Balsara.
Australian retailers are moving away from facial recognition. According to reports from Engadget and The Guardian, Kmart and Bunnings have temporarily halted the use of facial recognition in their local stores while the Australian Information Commissioner’s Office (OAIC) investigates the privacy implications of their systems. Companies were using technology to prevent fraud and reduce theft rates. Both companies say they used facial recognition technology for security purposes, and Kmart says its primary use of the technology was to “prevent criminal activity.” The investigation began in mid-July, just a month after consumer advocacy group Choice learned that Kmart and Bunnings were testing facial recognition. These systems have come under scrutiny after showing gender and racial biases. Big tech companies like IBM and Microsoft have moved away from technology, and US politicians have urged government agencies to stop using such platforms.
A recent analysis by Politico found that 34 states have proposed bills or passed laws that influence how social media companies handle their users’ content. Recently, Texas and Florida have been in the news for their social media laws, but they’re not the only states trying to gain control by managing content on social media platforms. According to an article by Gizmodo, in conservative-led states, the main trend follows the pattern of Texas and Florida. States like Ohio and Mississippi are trying to write laws that would prevent companies from removing or moderating user content based on their political views. Lawmakers in Democratic-led states like California are trying to pass legislation that would encourage social media companies to take a tougher approach to moderating certain types of content that could be harmful to users. The effort to try to censor social media from both political parties has drawn the attention of tech industry groups such as NetChoice and First Amendment scholars. These experts say some of these proposals are a violation of the First Amendment.
US chipmaker Intel said it would produce chips for Taiwan’s MediaTek, which is one of the world’s largest chip design firms. According to a report by ReutersThe deal is one of the most significant deals announced by Intel since launching its foundry business early last year. A foundry company builds chips that other companies design. Intel and MediaTek have formed a strategic partnership to build chips for “a range of intelligent edge devices” using Intel Foundry Services, Intel revealed in its announcement. The goal of this partnership is to help MediaTek build a more resilient supply chain, with increased capacity in the US and Europe. Intel launched its Foundry Services in 2021 to take advantage of growing demand for semiconductor manufacturing by offering “leading-edge process and packaging technology”. Last year, Intel announced it would build chips for Qualcomm as part of its foundry launch.
The Navy recently installed a 3D printer aboard one of its ships, the Essex, to help test new printing technology at sea. The Naval Postgraduate School, which led the research effort on the tech, installed the printer on the Essex and ran diagnostic tests in early July. During its trials and evaluation at sea, the new printer, capable of fabricating and printing aluminum, will produce various items on board. According to a report from navy time, The Ecole Supérieure Navale worked with Xerox to receive its own 3D printer. Lieutenant Commander Nicolas Batista says, “Having this printer on board will essentially speed up, improve and increase our combat readiness. The sailors on board will now have to be trained in the proper use of equipment and technology.
It’s all the technological news that is in fashion at the moment. Hashtag Trending is part of the ITWC Podcast Network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefings or Google Home Daily Briefing. Be sure to sign up for our Daily computer thread newsletter to get all the news that matters straight to your inbox every day. Also check out the next episode of Hashtag Tendances, our weekly Hashtag Trending episode in French, which comes out every Thursday morning. If you have a suggestion or advice, write to us in the comments or via email. Thank you for listening to me, I am Samira Balsara.