Tech Week: Industry Diversity, Digital Afterlives, Net Neutrality | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Tech Week: Industry Diversity, Digital Afterlives, Net Neutrality

What happened in technology this week, you ask? Here's a roundup of the tech stories reported by NPR and others since you last checked in.

ICYMI

Hack The Hood: Twitter this week followed Google, Facebook and Yahoo in releasing numbers on the makeup of its workforce. And like those tech giants, the numbers show that the 140-character social media company is largely male and white. To counter that trend, NPR's Aarti Shahani reports, a growing number of nonprofits are popping up next door to Silicon Valley to help young blacks and Latinos break into the industry.

Our Digital Afterlives: What happens to our archived Facebook messages, old email chains and other digital crumbs after we log off this earth? NPR's Molly Roberts reports that, if adopted by the states, a model law would give the executor of your estate access to your online assets and online financial accounts.

A Workout At Work: This week's innovation pick is the Cubii, which encourages you to exercise while seated at your desk. As NPR's Allie Caren reports, this small elliptical-style device could ease your worries that a sedentary existence will shorten your life.

The Big Conversation

Net Neutrality Deluge: After a five-month period, the Federal Communications Commission received more than 1 million comments on its proposal to let Internet providers charge content providers extra fees to deliver faster service. But, as NPR's Elise Hu reports, analysts say the comments may not matter much in the end.

People have come up with a variety of metaphors to describe net neutrality, which can be a complicated concept to explain. The most common one is that the Internet would be treated like a highway with fast and slow lanes. But comparing it to a shower?

Curiosities

Wall Street Journal: Google's New Moonshot Project: the Human Body

The company will conduct a baseline study of healthy people, collecting anonymous genetic and molecular information. The aim is to help researchers find patterns that could head off heart disease, cancer and other killers.

BuzzFeed: How Media Organizations Are Prepping To Bring The News To Your Wrist

Some analysts predict hundreds of millions of smartwatches will be sold by 2018; news outlets are already at work trying to figure out how to squeeze headlines onto smaller, wrist-size screens.

9to5Mac: iOS 8 beta 4 includes new Tips app with quick feature tutorials

Apple prides itself on the simplicity of its devices, so it's a little surprising that the next version of its mobile operating system will include an instructional app, called Tips.

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

WAMU 88.5

Director Says He Was Fired From Theater J, Cites 'Philosophical Differences'

After 18 years as artistic director of the Washington DCJCC's in-house theater company, Ari Roth is leaving. In a statement, the JCC says Roth "is stepping down to pursue a new series of endeavors." But Roth says he was fired.
NPR

New Cuba Relationship Could Be A Boon For American Farmers

Two-thirds of the food Cubans eat is imported — but the reestablishment of ties with the U.S. could open opportunities for American farmers.
WAMU 88.5

Bowser Taps Council Member Tommy Wells For Cabinet Position

Just a few months ago, Council Member Wells was battling with Bowser to become the Democratic candidate for mayo. But now he becomes the first-ever D.C. Council member to move to a position in a new mayoral cabinet.
NPR

Obama Says 'James Flacco.' The Internet Says, Thank You

It was an honest mistake. But when President Obama said "James Flacco" when referring to James Franco — on a Friday before the holidays, no less — the slip was eagerly received online.

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