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  1. #101
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    US Muslim groups welcome changes to Google results

    'Direct connection' between misleading information about Islam, uptick in Islamophobic attacks, says Imam Omar Suleiman

    By Michael Hernandez


    Queries about Islam and Muslims on the world’s largest search engine have been updated amid public pressure to tamp down alleged disinformation from hate groups.


    However, activists who have worked to bring about the changes say more work remains.

    In the past, users on Google seeking information about the religion or its adherents would be presented prominently with what many criticized as propaganda from hate groups.

    That has recently changed.

    Google's first page results for searches of terms such as “jihad”, “shariah” and “taqiyya” now return mostly reputable explanations of the Islamic concepts. Taqiyya, which describes the circumstances under which a Muslim can conceal their belief in the face of persecution, is the sole term to feature a questionable website on the first page of results.

    Google did not confirm to Anadolu Agency the changes but said it is constantly updating its algorithms.

    The search giant referred the agency to a recent blog post in which it said it was working to push back on what it called “offensive or clearly misleading content”.

    “To help prevent the spread of such content for this subset of queries, we’ve improved our evaluation methods and made algorithmic updates to surface more authoritative content,” it said.

    Combatting Islamophobia


    One leading activist in favor of Google modifying its results told Anadolu Agency he noticed the updated search results and thanked the company for its efforts but said “much still needs to be done”.

    Imam Omar Suleiman, who has been at the forefront of efforts to combat misleading information about his faith on the web, argued that Google and companies like it have a responsibility to combat “hate-filled Islamophobia” similar to how they work to suppress extremist propaganda from groups like Daesh and al-Qaeda.

    Suleiman said Google should differentiate between “criticism of Islam and hate-filled Islamophobia”, emphasizing the religion should not be infringed upon.

    “Google does not need to silence criticism of Islam and honest discussions about Islam, but heavily funded hate groups that are able to work the SEOs to get their websites showing up on the first, second page – I think that’s deeply problematic,” the popular imam said, referring to search engine optimization -- the way in which websites are able to improve their placement in search engine results.

    The task of sorting out legitimate criticism or debate about Islam from misleading information will not be easy, particularly in societies that value freedom of speech -- a fact Suleiman, who is the founder and president of the Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research, acknowledged.

    Google told Anadolu Agency it does not seek to remove content from its platform simply because it is unsavory or unpopular, but does its best to prevent hate speech from appearing.

    One way it is working to improve on the effort is by providing users with a mechanism in autofill suggestions that would allow users to alert the company when an offensive term appears.

    Amid a nationwide increase in hate crimes targeting Muslims, the effort to combat misinformation is more imperative than ever, Muslim group said.


    Hate crimes against Muslims


    The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the U.S.’s largest Muslim advocacy group, said it tracked a 584 percent increase in anti-Muslim hate crimes from 2014 to 2016.

    The group is not the only one to find such numbers. The Southern Poverty Law Center tracks hate incidents and groups in the U.S. and said it found hate groups increasing in number for the second consecutive year in 2016, fueled largely by a near-tripling of anti-Muslim groups.

    “The growth has been accompanied by a rash of crimes targeting Muslims,” the center said in its annual report.

    Information people receive from a variety of sources -- television, radio and the Internet -- no doubt plays a role in fomenting hatred among some of those who perpetrate attacks but could also be used to stop them.

    “We are seeing a rise in hate crimes towards Muslims, and there is a direct connection between this demonization of Islam and Muslims and the hate crimes that are being perpetuated against Muslims in the United States,” Suleiman said.

    Still, he maintained that such voices should not be censored but “should not be featured prominently as authoritative voices.”

    Suleiman added: “I don’t think Google has a responsibility to portray Muslims positively. I think Google has a responsibility to weed out fear-mongering and hate groups but I don’t want Google to silence critique of Islam, or critique of Muslims, or critique of Judaism, or Black Lives Matter -- whatever it is.

    “It’s a fair ask that when someone goes to Google they are not being presented with information from hate groups, and representatives of the faith, as well as respectable academics... as if they’re all on the same playing field.

    “We’re not on the same playing field.”

    Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.

    http://aa.com.tr/en/americas/us-musl...results/869584

  2. #102
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    Apple to kill off fingerprint sensors and add FaceID to ALL iPhones next year

    Apple's radical FaceID system is set to come to the entire iPhone line next year, it has been claimed.

    The firm is set to abandon its current TouchID fingerprint system entirely, according to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

    He claims that all 2018 iPhone models will move to Face ID, according to 9to5Mac

    Just last month he issued a note in which he said the future of Face ID depended largely upon consumer reaction to the iPhone X.

    The analyst writes that 3D sensing will be a 'key selling point' of all new 2018 iPhone models and says TrueDepth cameras and Face ID will help Apple 'capitalize on its clear lead in 3D sensing design and production for smartphones.'

    Kuo also predicted that the iPad Pro would gain Face ID next year.

    However, the modules needed for FaceID are still causing major production issues for Apple just weeks before its iPhone X launch, it has been claimed.

    The firm's suppliers are still struggling to perfect manufacturing of the iPhone X's TrueDepth camera and 3D facial recognition system, according to Japan's Nikkei Asian Review.

    Jeff Pu, an analyst with Taipei-based Yuanta Investment Consulting, believes the problems could mean Apple will face even bigger shortages of its flagship handset than previously thought.

    He cut his forecast of the number of iPhone X devices that will be produced this year from 40 million units to 36 million.

    FACEID PROBLEMS

    Multiple reports have claimed it has taken more time to assemble the TrueDepth system's so-called 'Romeo' module than the 'Juliet' module.

    The 'Romeo' module includes the dot projector that beams more than 30,000 invisible dots to create a precise depth map of your face.

    The 'Juliet' module includes the infrared camera that analyzes the pattern.

    Together, they help power new iPhone X features such as Face ID and Animoji.

    HOW APPLE'S FACE ID WORKS

    Face ID uses a TrueDepth front-facing camera on the iPhone X, which has multiple components.

    A Dot Projector projects more than 30,000 invisible dots onto your face to map its structure.


    The dot map is then read by an infrared camera and the structure of your face is relayed to the A11 Bionic chip in the iPhone X, where it is turned into a mathematical model.

    When FaceID is used, a dot projector projects more than 30,000 invisible dots onto your face to map its structure

    The A11 chip then compares your facial structure to the facial scan stored in the iPhone X during the setup process.


    Face ID uses infrared to scan your face, so it works in low lighting conditions and in the dark.


    It will only unlock your device when you look in the direction of the iPhone X with your eyes open.




    Face ID captures both a 3-D and 2-D image of your face using infrared light while you're looking straight at the camera.

    Five unsuccessful attempts at Face ID will force you to enter a passcode - which you'll need anyway just to set up facial recognition.


    That requires you to come up with a secure string of digits - or, for extra security, a string of letters and numbers - to protect your privacy.


    Face ID also adapts to changes in your appearance over time, so it will continue to recognize you as you grow a beard or grow your hair longer.


    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencete...D-iPhones.html

    comments:

    It doesn't even work properly yet and they are going to push it out anyway. First they got people's fingerprints and now they will get their faces. Also a big security risk, just as fingerprinting was, you can take advantage of a sleeping person or force anyone to unlock your phone so easily now. A nice ploy to get stupid people to give up their bio-metrics for free.


 

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