Thursday, March 23, 2017
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Google Maps already tracks you; now other people can, tooiStock

Google Maps already tracks you; now other people can, too

22 Mar 2017 | 10:57 PM

SAN FRANCISCO:Google Maps users will soon be able to broadcast their movements to friends and family the latest test of how much privacy people are willing to sacrifice in an era of rampant sharing.

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San Francisco, March 22

Google Maps users will soon be able to broadcast their movements to friends and family the latest test of how much privacy people are willing to sacrifice in an era of rampant sharing.

The location-monitoring feature will begin rolling out today in an update to the Google Maps mobile app, which is already installed on most of the world's smartphones. It will also be available on personal computers.

Google believes the new tool will be a more convenient way for people to let someone know where they are without having to text or call them. The Mountain View, California, company has set up the controls so individuals can decide with whom they want to share their whereabouts and for how long anywhere from a few minutes to indefinitely.

But location sharing in one of the world's most popular apps could cause friction in marriages and other relationships if one partner demands to know where the other is at all times. Similar tensions could arise if parents insist their teenagers turn on the location-sharing option before they go out.

It could also be turned into a way to stalk someone entangled in an abusive relationship, warned Ruth Glenn, executive director for the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. "It has the potential to be another tool in an abuser's toolkit," she said.

Similar tracking is already available on other apps; Glympse, founded by former Microsoft employees, has offered this function for years.

Although it isn't as wide-ranging, Apple also offers a tracking option called "Find My Friends" on its iPhone, iPad and Watch.

That's one of the reasons Google isn't expecting a lot of complaints about adding the option to Maps, especially since everyone can decide when to turn it on and who can monitor them.

"We don't feel like we are changing the game," said Jen Fitzpatrick, Google's vice president of maps.

Maps users will be able to activate the location-sharing feature by tapping a button near the search bar and then picking a person from their contact list to text with the information. If the recipient doesn't have the Google Maps app on their phone, it will text them a link to open the location on the map in a browser. — AP

600 mn kids to face extreme water shortage by 2040World Water Day

600 mn kids to face extreme water shortage by 2040

22 Mar 2017 | 2:46 PM

UNITED NATIONS: Nearly 600 million children, one in four worldwide, will live in areas with extremely limited water resources by 2040, according to a UN report.

Apple to sell special edition of iPhone 7 in India from April

Apple to sell special edition of iPhone 7 in India from April

21 Mar 2017 | 9:52 PM

NEW DELHI: US-based tech major Apple will from April start selling in India its special 'RED' edition of iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, symbolising the fight against AIDS.

Scientists find how using 'satnav' switches off parts of brain

Scientists find how using 'satnav' switches off parts of brain

21 Mar 2017 | 9:35 PM

LONDON: If you have long feared that using a "satnav" navigation system to get to your destination is making you worse at finding the way alone, research now suggests you may be right.

Mars' volcano, Earth's dinosaurs went extinct same time

Mars' volcano, Earth's dinosaurs went extinct same time

21 Mar 2017 | 3:04 PM

WASHINGTON: The last volcanic activity on the Red Planet ceased about 50 million years ago, around the time when our planet's plant and animal species, including dinosaurs, went extinct, reveals new research.

People may be singing when the world ends

People may be singing when the world ends

21 Mar 2017 | 1:23 PM

NEW YORK: As the world ends, will you lock arms and sing "Kumbayah" or embark on a path of law-breaking, anti-social behaviour? A new video game based study suggests that you may be singing.

ESA's Jupiter mission set to launch in 2022

ESA's Jupiter mission set to launch in 2022

20 Mar 2017 | 9:38 PM

LONDON: ESA is scheduled to launch its Jupiter exploring spacecraft in 2022 on a mission to examine the giant planet's turbulent atmosphere, enormous magnetosphere, its set of tenuous dark rings and satellites.

Brain imbalance linked to impulsive Facebook use

Brain imbalance linked to impulsive Facebook use

20 Mar 2017 | 6:01 PM

WASHINGTON: The impulsive act of checking Facebook while driving, in a work meeting or at other times may be associated with a deficiency in the balance between two systems in the brain, scientists say.

Vivo Y55s smartphone: Decent performance but overpriced

Vivo Y55s smartphone: Decent performance but overpriced

20 Mar 2017 | 12:47 PM

NEW DELHI: China-based Vivo, whose strength lies in a strong offline presence in India, has so far delivered devices that are known for superior design and quality.

SpaceX cargo ship returns to Earth

SpaceX cargo ship returns to Earth

20 Mar 2017 | 11:22 AM

WASHINGTON: A SpaceX reusable cargo ship splashed down in the Pacific Ocean safely, ending a mission to supply astronauts on the International Space Station, the company has said.

New e-tattoos to turn your skin into smartphone controls

New e-tattoos to turn your skin into smartphone controls

19 Mar 2017 | 9:50 PM

BERLIN: Scientists have developed ultrathin temporary electronic tattoos which can turn skin blemishes and wrinkles into touch-sensitive buttons for controlling your smartphone.

New wi-fi system to provide 100 times faster internet

New wi-fi system to provide 100 times faster internet

19 Mar 2017 | 9:47 PM

LONDON: Scientists have developed a new wireless internet based on harmless infrared rays that is 100 times faster than existing wi-fi network and has the capacity to support more devices without getting congested.

Impulsive Facebook use linked to brain imbalance: Study

Impulsive Facebook use linked to brain imbalance: Study

18 Mar 2017 | 1:36 PM

WASHINGTON: The impulsive act of checking Facebook while driving, in a work meeting, or at other times that could have negative consequences is linked with a deficiency in the balance between two systems in the brain, scientists say.

Do skilled professionals make more mistakes at workplace?

Do skilled professionals make more mistakes at workplace?

18 Mar 2017 | 1:03 PM

WASHINGTON DC: Which organisation does not want a highly skilled professional at workplace? But ‘to err is human' suggests a new study as faster things happen, the worse we remember them, thereby increasing the risk factor for making errors when interrupted.

Global warming may make mammals shrink

Global warming may make mammals shrink

17 Mar 2017 | 5:56 PM

WASHINGTON: Even brief global warming events — known as hyperthermals — can cause mammals to shrinking in size, according to a new study that unveils the underlying effects of current human-caused climate change.

Why casual sex is not so cool

Why casual sex is not so cool

17 Mar 2017 | 9:41 PM

LONDON: Does a one-night stand or romping without any commitment or emotional involvement sound interesting to you? If yes, please beware. Researchers have found that a liking for casual sex may land you in trouble.

Local climate shaped our noses

Local climate shaped our noses

17 Mar 2017 | 2:10 PM

WASHINGTON: The shape of our noses was formed by a long process of adaptation to our local climate, according to a new study published today.

Great Barrier Reef's survival relies on reducing warming

Great Barrier Reef's survival relies on reducing warming

16 Mar 2017 | 9:33 PM

BRISBANE: Australia's Great Barrier Reef can be saved only if urgent steps are taken to reduce global warming, a new research revealed on Thursday.

Mystery behind Mona Lisa's famous smile decoded

Mystery behind Mona Lisa's famous smile decoded

16 Mar 2017 | 4:18 PM

BERLIN: Mona Lisa is unquestionably smiling in one of the world's most famous paintings despite the intangible sadness that imbues her face, a new study suggests.

How cobras developed flesh-eating venom decoded

How cobras developed flesh-eating venom decoded

15 Mar 2017 | 6:24 PM

MELBOURNE: Cobras developed their potent flesh-destroying venom along with the ornately-marked broad hoods to warn off potential predators, say scientists who unveiled how the unique defensive toxins evolved in one of the world's most feared snakes.

How to fight chocolate cravings decoded

How to fight chocolate cravings decoded

15 Mar 2017 | 6:16 PM

MELBOURNE: Craving for chocolates? Imagining a walk in a forest or on a beach may help you cut down the desire for your favourite treats, scientists say.

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