Joey from Friends becomes first TV character to be ‘virtually immortalized’

University of Leeds researchers analyzed the body language, facial expressions and voice of sitcom character to create a digital avatar and, eventually, a chatbot

Since the final episode of hit sitcom Friends first aired in 2004, many fans have clung to the hope of a reunion. Earlier this year, the show’s co-creator Marta Kauffman quashed that idea emphatically:

“There will never be a Friends reunion movie,” she told E! News. Could she be any clearer?

Continue reading… …read more

Peter Thiel donated big to Trump. Why does the tech world still embrace him? | Katie Zhu

For all its lip service about embracing difference, Silicon Valley is still mostly white and male. Calling support for Donald Trump diversity won’t change that

Earlier this week, while we were still reeling from cavalier boasts about sexual assault and from watching woman after woman come forward to recount alleged sexual mistreatment at the hands of Donald Trump, Silicon Valley bigwig Peter Thiel donated $1.25m to the candidate.

Far from being blacklisted for supporting Trump, Thiel remains a “part-time partner” at influential tech startup incubator Y Combinator, and he still sits on the boards of Facebook, Palantir, Asana and Zenefits.

Continue reading… …read more

How a cancer group thwarted Facebook’s censorship: square breasts

Swedish Cancer Society’s original video, with animated images and information on how to conduct breast exams, was taken down by Facebook this week

The Swedish Cancer Society has come up with a new strategy to evade Facebook’s censorship of female anatomy: make round breasts square.

The not-for-profit organization’s breast cancer awareness video, featuring animated images and information on how to conduct breast exams, was taken down by Facebook this week.

Continue reading… …read more

Jeff Bezos says Donald Trump’s behavior ‘erodes democracy’

The Amazon founder spoke out against the Republican nominee, but said he supports Facebook’s decision to keep Trump backer Peter Thiel on its board

Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel should not be ousted from Facebook’s board for his political views, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has said, even though he believes Donald Trump’s actions “erode democracy”.

Speaking at the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit in San Francisco, the entrepreneur described how the Republican presidential candidate had attacked him on Twitter, making allegations that he bought the Washington Post to exert political power and avoid paying taxes.

Continue reading… …read more