News and Press


OwnBackup has made a name for itself primarily as a backup and disaster recovery system for the Salesforce ecosystem, and today the company announced a $50 million investment. Insight Partners led the round with participation from Salesforce Ventures and Vertex Ventures. This chunk of money comes on top of a $23 million round from a year ago, and brings the total raised to over $100 million, according to the company. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Salesforce Ventures chipped in when the majority of the company’s backup and recovery business involves the......

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What will happen when we reach the AI singularity?

Should you feel bad about pulling the plug on a robot or switch off an artificial intelligence algorithm? Not for the moment. But how about when our computers become as smart—or smarter—than us? Debates about the consequences of artificial general intelligence (AGI) are almost as old as the history of AI itself. Most discussions depict the future of artificial intelligence as either Terminator-like apocalypse or Wall-E-like utopia. But what’s less discussed is how we will perceive, interact with, and accept artificial intelligence agents when they develop traits of life, intelligence, and consciousness. In......

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TikTok will exit Hong Kong because of China's new security law

All those efforts aren’t necessarily helping, though. When asked about it by Fox News, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the US is “certainly looking at” banning Chinese social media apps like TikTok. In addition, the US Senate recently asked intelligence services to probe TikTok to see if it presents any kind of a national security risk. TikTok was recently banned in India, along with dozens of other Chinese apps. Facebook recently said it would “pause” responses to data requests from Hong Kong, despite the new security law that gives police......

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The ‘new’ Poco M2 Pro is just a Redmi Note 9 Pro in disguise

At the turn of this year, Xiaomi announced that it’s spinning of Poco as a separate brand. Since that day, the company has launched the Poco X2 in India, and the Poco F2 Globally. While Poco shares a ton of resources with Xiaomi including software and manufacturing, it has tried hard to push a narrative that it’s an independent brand. But with its new phone, the Poco M2 pro, the firm is making that hard to believe. The $175 Poco M2 Pro is a new offering from the company, but it’s a love child......

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Organise, a U.K. startup that has built a platform to help workers organise and campaign for better rights, has raised £570,000 in seed funding. The round is led by Ada Ventures, fitting into the VC firm’s remit to back “overlooked markets and founders”. Also participating is Form Ventures, RLC Ventures (a seed-stage fund who commit a portion of their profits back to charitable causes chosen by founders), and Ascension Ventures via its Fair By Design Fund. Founded in 2017 by CEO Nat Whalley and CTO Bex Hay, Organise describes itself as a “worker-driven......

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'Cold-hearted' Tesla threatened to close its dealerships without telling employees first

Credit: Paul Swansen – Edited – Flickr Since early last year, Tesla reportedly assessed the viability of its dealerships and stores, and with little regard for people who might be most affected by it. According to Business Insider, which spoke with 27 Tesla dealership employees, the company made a series of slapdash announcements in February last year, which said that the company would be “winding down many of [its] stores.” Despite the gravity of the initial announcement, it mentioned casually in a blog post about a new upcoming Model 3 variant. Tesla employees......

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‘Business benevolence’ is the key to surviving an economic crisis

The COVID-19 crisis is reshaping the world around us in profound and unpredictable ways, not least of which has been the widespread disruption of global supply chains. The fragility of some supply chains is so stark that some economists are signaling the end of globalism as we know it, causing business and government leaders to fundamentally rethink how much they rely on partners in other parts of the world.  But what’s really at stake? And how can businesses prepare for the next pandemic — or for that matter, any international crisis? What’s at......

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After India, the US is 'looking at' banning TikTok and other Chinese apps

TikTok has been one of the most controversial apps in the past couple of weeks, and its woes don’t seem to be over. After getting booted from in India, the company might now face a ban in the US. In an interview with Fox News, the Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, said that the US government is certainly looking at banning Chinese apps including TikTok: We are taking this very seriously. We’re certainly looking at it. We’ve worked on this very issue for a long time; whether it was the problems of having Huawei......

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Indian online learning platform Unacademy said on Tuesday it has acquired Chandigarh-based startup PrepLadder for $50 million as the Facebook-backed edtech giant scouts for deals to expand its presence in the country. PrepLadder, which employs about 150 people, offers courses aimed at medical students. The two-year-old startup, which never raised any capital from external investors, has more than 80,000 subscribers, said PrepLadder co-founder Deepanshu Goyal. “Unacademy and PrepLadder are working towards the common goal of making quality education accessible to all. We believe that the synergies between both products will truly create a mark......

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Why every developer should know multiple programming languages

This article was originally published on .cult by Doug Neale. .cult is a media platform for untold developer stories, where developers can read content around the softer side of development and watch documentaries about the tech they love. You can read this original piece here. “I’m a ruby developer!” “I hate javascript!” “Functional languages only!” Most developers would have heard boasts like these. In a world of endless languages and frameworks, it makes sense that some of us would choose our favourite stack and stick to that alone. But trends in the industry suggest......

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The world’s most popular short video app continues to be in the crosshairs of politicians globally. On Monday night, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News that the United States is “certainly looking at” banning TikTok over concerns that it could be used by the Beijing government as a surveillance and propaganda tool. The potential ban would deal another blow to TikTok after it recently went down in its biggest market, India. On the heel of Pompeo’s statement, TikTok announced that it would pull out of Hong Kong, which is facing an......

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Google Fiber's first expansion in four years is in West Des Moines

About ten years after starting its high speed internet quest, Google Fiber is expanding again. Availability in the city of West Des Moines, IA adds its first new market in four years. It will be a tenant, leasing space in an open conduit network that the city is building, with plans to offer service throughout the entire network. A blog post by director of corporate development David Finn noted some “mistakes” made in the project’s history, but reaffirmed a commitment to increasing broadband access. Since Google Fiber first launched, gigabit internet speeds (at......

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TikTok pulls its app from Hong Kong's Play Store and App Store

TikTok is perhaps the most troubled app in the world right now. A week after the app was banned in India, Bytedance-owned social network has decided to pull its apps from the Play Store and the App Store in Hong Kong amid political tensions. While the company removed these apps from the stores, it’s not clear if citizens who’ve already downloaded them, will be able to access TikTok. The company cited China’s controversial security law for Hong Kong that was passed last week. This rule enforces tighter content policing rules on citizens and tries to......

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Curiosity rover starts its 'summer trip' to next Martian destination

In just a few weeks’ time, the Perseverance rover and its helicopter companion might blast off to space and make their way to Mars. That doesn’t mean Curiosity will no longer be in the picture, though — in fact, the older rover has just started its mile-long summer journey towards its next destination. The Curiosity rover’s next stop is Mount Sharp’s “sulfate-bearing unit.” Since, here on Earth, sulfates usually form around water as it evaporates, the data the rover gathers could give us a clue on how the Martian climate and its prospects......

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Secretive big data and analytics startup Palantir, co-founded by Peter Thiel, said late Monday it has confidentially filed paperwork with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to go public. Its statement said little more. “The public listing is expected to take place after the SEC completes its review process, subject to market and other conditions.” Palantir did not say when it plans to go public nor did it provide other information such as how many shares it would potentially sell or the share price range for the IPO . Confidential IPO filings allow......

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What's on TV this week: 'The Old Guard' and 'Trolls World Tour'

This week Trolls World Tour comes home for the second time. It was one of the first major movies to make a video on-demand debut instead of being released in theaters, but now the Dance Party Edition will be available on Blu-ray with 4K and 3D versions. Netflix has a number of new series lined up, including the Japan Sinks: 2020 anime, but its biggest release for the week is director Gina Prince-Bythewood’s next flick, The Old Guard. It’s based on a graphic novel with stars including Charlize Theron and Chiwetel Ejiofor, telling......

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Women start 40 percent of the businesses in the U.S., but they receive just 3 percent of venture funding. It doesn’t take a math whiz to recognize that such an extreme funding gap could spell opportunity, but it might help if you are math minded, a longtime investor, and happen to be woman and so conceivably understand certain products and pitches better than some men. That was certainly the thinking of both Lori Cashman and Suzanne Norris, who came together in 2016 to form Victress Capital outside of Boston, a consumer-focused seed- and......

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Stardew Valley's Next Update Will Add End-Game Content

Stardew Valley has sold over 10 million copies since it launched in 2016, and developer Eric Barone continues to add new content to it, giving players plenty of reason to keep returning to their farms. The latest update (which Barone calls 1.5) is currently in development. Barone says progress is being made, and that this update adds a “significant new piece of end-game content.” In an image shared on Twitter, Barone teases one of the update’s additions, which just happens to be a new door in Willy’s fish shop. In the game now,......

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Stardew Valley's Next Update Will Add End-Game Content

Stardew Valley has sold over 10 million copies since it launched in 2016, and developer Eric Barone continues to add new content to it, giving players plenty of reason to keep returning to their farms. The latest update (which Barone calls 1.5) is currently in development. Barone says progress is being made, and that this update adds a “significant new piece of end-game content.” In an image shared on Twitter, Barone teases one of the update’s additions, which just happens to be a new door in Willy’s fish shop. In the game now,......

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Email is a critical tool in modern-day communications, so it’s natural that many entrepreneurs have tried to overhaul it over the years. In the last decade, email client Mailbox came and went, Slack launched to try to give people an alternative to email and Superhuman emerged to help people more easily reach the promised land of Inbox Zero. The latest startup to tackle email is project management software maker Basecamp, which launched Hey last month. Within its first 11 days of release, Hey received 125,000 signups, Basecamp founder and CEO Jason Fried tells TechCrunch.......

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