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Tech Week: Google's World Cup Play, Amazon Sued And Kids Tracked

Summertime in the tech world has made us eager for some lighter news, which you can find below. But the weightier legal battles in technology continue, as highlighted in our Big Conversation section. And links we think you should see are filed under Curiosities. Have a great weekend, readers.

ICYMI

The World Cup According To Google: As our Aarti Shahani reports, Google is mining its search data from the World Cup games, trying to make factoids that go viral. It's a virtual "newsroom," focused on happy thoughts, not sad ones.

Is a Burrito a Sandwich?: It's complicated. The varying takes on this by different jurisdictions actually make a bigger point related to technology development — regulatory frameworks are too slow to catch up to innovation. Our source at the U.S. Department of Agriculture admits it, and says, "You just gotta sit back and accept it."

Big Mother: A new electronic wristband from LG lets you keep tabs on your preschooler — and even listen in. But as Allie Caren reported, some experts say such devices send the wrong message about the world we live in.

The Big Conversation

Amazon Fights The FTC: After the online retailer failed to agree to a settlement, the Federal Trade Commission has filed a lawsuit against Amazon for allowing millions of unauthorized, in-app purchases by children. (An in-app purchase is buying a new outfit for your gaming avatar, or new levels of Candy Crush, etc.) Is this crackdown going to extend to other app stores, like Google Play? The feds aren't saying.

Aereo Fights On: It shut down after the Supreme Court ruled its business model was violating the U.S. Copyright Act, but the streaming TV service says it's going to fight on, as The Verge reports. The gist of its survival strategy: When SCOTUS found against Aereo, it said Aereo acts like a cable company. So Aereo is responding in a lower court by saying, we should operate as a cable system instead of an equipment provider. The law is fascinating.

Curiosities

The Guardian: Cynk Sunk: Regulators Suspend Trading in Mystery Company

In the course of a few short weeks, Cynk's over-the-counter stock value soared 30,000 percent, putting the company's valuation at more than $5 billion. But there's no evidence the company has any revenue or assets.

NY Times: Chinese Hackers Pursue Key Data On U.S. Workers

Hackers gained access into the agency with personal information of all federal employees.

USA Today: Call Girl Accused Of Killing Google Exec

There is all sorts of mystery and intrigue swirling around the death of Forrest Hayes. Read on.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Texas Bookseller Picks 3 Summer Reads

Julia Green of Front Street Books recommends Moonlight on Linoleum by Terry Helwig, City of Women by David R. Gillham and The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly.
NPR

He Used To Live On The Streets Of Mumbai. Now, His Cafe Welcomes Everyone

Amin Sheikh's new cafe is a rarity in class-stratified India: It's open to people from all walks of life. Sheikh is a former street child, and so are many of his employees.
NPR

For Many Black Voters, Trump's 'What Do You Have To Lose?' Plea Isn't Enough

Donald Trump promises to help bring jobs and security to black neighborhoods. But his poll numbers with African-Americans are in the low single digits, and many say his message is insulting.
WAMU 88.5

A Cyber-Psychologist Explains How Human Behavior Changes Online

Dr. Mary Aiken, a pioneering cyber-psychologist, work inspired the CBS television series "CSI: Cyber". She explains how going online changes our behavior in small and dramatic ways, and what that means for how we think about our relationship with technology.

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