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Technology

This week, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp suffered major worldwide outages, and Twitter previewed some possible new changes. And people took to (what else?) social media to (what else?) complain.

And: The Ringer asks the age-old question, if a TV show falls in the woods, and no one talks about it, can it be certified fresh? Or something like that.

And finally: Captain Marvel is the 21st feature film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is the ninth movie in the MCU's Phase Three. It is, chronologically, a sequel to 2011's Captain America: The First Avenger and a prequel to 2008's Iron Man. I didn't follow much of that, but I get this part: After 11 years and all those previous movies, it's the first one with a female lead.

Grendelkhan / Wikimedia Commons

What would you do with all that time if you didn't have to drive during your daily commute?

This hour: like it or not, autonomous vehicles (AVs) will be a major part of our not-too-distant transportation future. We take a look at some of the promises and challenges of automating vehicles and ask what they will mean for the cities of our future.

The Truth About Lies

Mar 7, 2019
Mike Roberts / Creative Commons

Laszlo Ratesic is a nineteen-year veteran of the Speculative Service. He lives in the Golden State, the only place left in what was once America. Laszlo's job is to bring the worst criminals to justice, those who tell lies. In his new novel, Ben Winters creates a world which might sound Eden-esque in our era of misinformation. 

Terri D'Arcangelo

How do you make a 100-meter telescope that folds down to three meters so you can tuck it inside a space vehicle? How do you make a heart stent that folds out inside the human body? In each case, researchers have turned to masters of origami, the thousand-year-old art of paper folding.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Forensic scientist Dr. Henry C. Lee has been a well-known figure in Connecticut courtrooms for decades. His expertise led to high-profile work investigating famous crimes from the O.J. Simpson trial to investigating the murder of child beauty queen, JonBenét Ramsey.

Last fall, Corey Chase drove 6,000 miles around his state to ground-truth what every Vermonter with a cell phone knows: there are many, many places in the state where you simply can't get a signal, not to mention the 5 megabits per second data download speeds the carriers were claiming.

The six-week effort involved six cell phones, a state-owned Prius and an app from a software developer in Bulgaria.

James Vaughan / Flickr

Humans are great at making a mess of things. So far, however, that mess has been confined to Earth. But as we develop into a spacefaring species, our capacity for destruction, pollution, and prejudice (towards aliens of earthly and unearthly origins) threatens to have cosmic consequences.

Harrison Weber / Flickr

When you sit down to watch a favorite TV show, do you check the program schedule for a weekly listing?  Or do you turn on Netflix or Hulu and start binging?

This hour, we take a look at what the rise of internet-based streaming services means for the television industry. And we want to hear from you, too.  Have you cut the cord on cable?

Zoo Fanatic / Creative Commons

It's been easy to overlook Trump Administration environmental policies that are contributing to the destruction of wildlife and habitats.

Chion Wolf / WNPR/Connecticut Public Radio

Forensic scientist Dr. Henry C. Lee has been a well-known figure in Connecticut courtrooms for decades. His expertise led to high-profile work investigating famous crimes from the O.J. Simpson trial to investigating the murder of child beauty queen, JonBenét Ramsey.

But in addition to his testimony on famous cases, Dr. Lee has been a staple of forensic science in Connecticut for the past 40 years--from serving as the state’s chief criminalist to helping found the Connecticut Forensic Science Laboratory.

RoboCup2013 / Flickr

Athletes, therapists, comedians, and public radio producers: All jobs which require a human touch, right? Perhaps not. Even now, we're beginning to see some of these rolls being performed by robots. But while machines may be capable of doing such work, is there any demand for it among humans?

Connecticut Historical Society

Bicycles helped inspire modern cars, paved roads...even airplanes! But did you know they were also an inspiration for the women's movement?

This hour we take a look back in time at the origins of the bicycle, including innovation that happened right here in Connecticut. We find out the history of how this vehicle spurred social change and helped empower women to break through gender barriers a little more than a century ago.

Illusration: Carmen Baskauf

Today, it’s more common to go online for news than subscribe to a physical newspaper, but with so much content freely available on the web, how are news outlets staying afloat? This hour we talk about how the digital landscape is impacting journalism.

Artist Bri Dill from South Windsor creates a painting at the grand opening of Infosys' Hartford innovation hub.
Harriet Jones / Connecticut Public Radio

Technology consulting company Infosys has formally cut the ribbon on its new innovation hub in Hartford. The center, housed in Hartford’s Goodwin Square building, will be one of four that the Indian company is creating around the U.S. 

Facebook's leaders gave certain big tech companies access to users' data — and the company refused such access to competitors, including the video app Vine, which the social media giant targeted right after it was launched by Twitter.

Updated at 4:15 p.m. ET

In one of the largest cybersecurity breaches in history, Marriott International said Friday that information on up to about 500 million of its customers worldwide was exposed in a breach of its Starwood guest reservation database dating as far back as 2014.

The world's largest hotel chain said it learned of the breach on Sept. 8.

Damian Bariexca/flickr creative commons

Several child advocacy groups warn that some apps targeted at small children are potentially dangerous and costly. 

When Kathy Klute-Nelson heads out on a neighborhood walk, she often takes her two dogs — Kona, a boxer, and Max, a small white dog of questionable pedigree who barrels out the front door with barks of enthusiasm.

The 64-year-old resident of Costa Mesa, Calif., says she was never one to engage in regular exercise — especially after a long day of work. But about three years ago, her employer, the Auto Club of Southern California, made her and her colleagues an offer she couldn't refuse: Wear a Fitbit, walk every day and get up to $300 off your yearly health insurance premiums.

United Kingdom Government / Wikimedia Commons

This weekend was the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I. World leaders convened in Paris and listened to French president Emmanuel Macron warn against reviving the "old demons" of nationalism that led to our first world war. 

Marco Verch / Creative Commons

What are the short- and long-term benefits of receiving continuous health care?

This hour, we talk with the medical director of the Washington, D.C.-based Robert Graham Center.

We also hear from three Connecticut-based doctors, who tell us how technology and innovation are revolutionizing the way care is delivered.  

Have you heard of telemedicine? What about subscription-based concierge services? We want to hear from you, too. 

Just a week after the 2001 al-Qaida attacks terrorized the U.S., anonymous letters with anthrax spores began arriving at congressional offices and media companies, killing five people, infecting 17 and unleashing their own wave of fear.

Updated at 8:50 p.m. ET

Paul Allen, who co-founded tech giant Microsoft with Bill Gates, died from complications of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in Seattle on Monday. He was 65 years old.

Allen's death was announced in a statement released by his investment firm, Vulcan.

Mark Goebel / Creative Commons

Despite Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and attempts by hackers to infiltrate voter-registration databases in Illinois, Arizona and several other states in the summer of 2016, little has been done to better secure America's network of electronic voting systems.

Connecticut Historical Society

Bicycles helped inspire modern cars, paved roads...even airplanes! But did you know they were also an inspiration for the women's movement?

This hour we take a look back in time at the origins of the bicycle, including innovation that happened right here in Connecticut. We find out the history of how this vehicle spurred social change and helped empower women to break through gender barriers a little more than a century ago.

Instagram Co-Founders To Step Down

Sep 25, 2018

Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, co-founders of Instagram, have announced their plan to leave the company that produces the popular photo-sharing application.

"We're planning on taking some time off to explore our curiosity and creativity again," Systrom said in a statement on the company's website. "Building new things requires that we step back, understand what inspires us and match that with what the world needs; that's what we plan to do."

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Actress Cynthia Nixon lost the Democratic gubernatorial primary in New York yesterday. Did she lose because of the kind of bagel she eats? Probably not. But from the Nose's point of view, what could really matter more than that?

And Vulture, last week -- "as the discourse rages on about whether or not political correctness is destroying comedy (spoiler alert: it isn't)" -- ran a piece on the jokes comedians regret. But here's the real question: Do we want comedians regretting their jokes, tasteless or not?

J Stimp / Creative Commons

Nearly ninety-percent of Americans own a smartphone.

On average, we spend more than four hours a day on our phones, which adds up to about 56 full days a year. That's like sealing yourself in a room on the first day of summer and not emerging until the kids head back to school. 

Pixabay

From self-driving cars to all-electric Teslas, Silicon Valley is imagining an automobile beyond the internal combustion engine and steering wheel we all grew up with. Meanwhile, app-based companies like Uber and Lyft are radically shifting the way we interact with cars.

Graduate Max Johnson, New Haven Mayor Toni Harp, Governor Dannel Malloy.
Lori Mack / Connecticut Public Radio

A San Francisco-based software engineering school is opening a new location in Connecticut. 

Pixabay

From self-driving cars to all-electric Teslas, Silicon Valley is imagining an automobile beyond the internal combustion engine and steering wheel we all grew up with. Meanwhile, app-based companies like Uber and Lyft are radically shifting the way we interact with cars.

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