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Essential Phone’s new ‘Halo Gray’ color goes on sale exclusively at Amazon

The Essential Phone is currently in the midst of being rolled out in a range of new colors, including three that will be released excessively on Essential’s own website, with a staged release schedule that began Thursday. On Friday, however, Essential revealed a surprise fourth new color, “Halo Gray,” which will be exclusive to Amazon and which is now available to pre-purchase. Amazon is a partner to Essential both as a sales channel, and as an investor. The distribution partnership with Amazon has been particularly fruitful, among all its sales…

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Super Business Girl ~ Get Rich Slowly

Long-time readers know how much I love child entrepreneurs. This probably stems from my own experiences having kid-sized businesses when I was young. Whatever the reason, I can’t get enough stories of kids who build their own businesses and learn to take charge of their lives from a young age. Here, for instance, is a 2014 story about Asia Newson, an 11-year-old girl from Detroit, Michigan. She runs a company called Super Business Girl. Asia, who must be fourteen by now, has help from her parents but she’s the driving…

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Sorry, Apple’s ‘Carpool Karaoke’ gets a second season

Despite its almost universally negative reception from critics, Apple has chosen to renew James Corden’s “Carpool Karaoke” series for Apple Music for a second season. CBS CEO Leslie Moonves announced the renewal on the company’s earning call this week, as part of its commitment to producing more original content, according to a report from Deadline. The series, which is based on the recurring segment from “The Late Late Show with James Corden,” has been streaming on Apple Music since August 2017. It’s essentially an expanded format of what had previously been…

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Assur.com is an insurance aggregator without all the clutter

French startup Assur.com lets you find and compare all sorts of insurance products without having to enter all your personal information. While insurance aggregators are nothing new, they usually ask you for your email address, phone number and more. And chances are those companies are going to spam you with offers. But Assur.com has a different approach as you don’t have to enter any information in a text field. It’s all about browsing a well-organized database of insurance products. For now, Assur.com is focusing on the French market and French…

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Clever Ethereum honeypot lets coins come in but won’t let them back out

An interesting new Ethereum-based honeypot has been discovered that essentially allows hackers to steal from hackers. The honeypot is detailed on Reddit. A user was hunting for examples of contracts that exhibited possible were susceptible to a “reentrancy attack.” It’s a bit complex but at its core the attack lets you concurrently request your money out of a smart contract over and over before the contract is able to set your account total to zero. Imagine being able to call the back over and over again and ask for $5…

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Uber is reportedly preparing to sell its Southeast Asian business to Grab

Uber is preparing to sell its Southeast Asian business to Grab in exchange for a stake in the Singaporean ridesharing company that has a big presence in that region, according to a new report from CNBC. This wouldn’t be an unfamiliar story for Uber, which was handily beaten by Didi in China before eventually caving and selling the company to the dominant ridesharing startup in China. Uber sold its Chinese business to Didi in August 2016, which involved an equity deal. In that sense, Uber may be acknowledging where it’s…

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Zelle users are finding out the hard way there’s no fraud protection

Scammers have taken to Zelle, the Venmo alternative backed by U.S. banks, to defraud consumers who believe the service includes the same protections they’ve come to expect from PayPal. A number of customers report having lost hundreds, or even thousands of dollars, over Zelle, when they used it for transactions with people they didn’t know – like tickets bought off a Craigslist posting, for example. Here’s how the scam works. The seller will ask the buyer to pay them through Zelle instead of PayPal – the latter which has long…

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Special counsel Robert Mueller indicts Russian bot farm for election meddling

Special Counsel Robert Mueller has just handed down a set of indictments, charging 13 Russian citizens and three Russian organizations with interference in the U.S. presidential election in efforts dating back to 2014. The indictment names the Internet Research Agency, a bot farm and disinformation operation based out of St. Petersburg, as one of the sources of the fake accounts meant to create divisions in American society. Those accounts were active on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and the indictment brings up specific examples from the internal review results that these…

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Cloudflare is protecting the internet using groovy lava lamps

Cloudflare has a unique way of protecting a huge portion of the world’s internet. They call it their Wall of Entropy; a wall lined with lava lamps that are being filmed with a camera. That data is then converted to numbers jumbled up with a couple other sources of randomness in other parts of the world, like a Geiger counter and a chaotic pendulum, and is then fed into an algorithm with a variety of other sources to create some really intense cryptography. I was lucky enough to get to…

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Telegram has raised an initial $850M for its billion-dollar ICO

It looks like Telegram’s billion-dollar ICO has reached its first milestone after the chat app company raised an initial $850 million, according to a filing. A document submitted to the SEC earlier this week states that the money was raised “for the development of the TON Blockchain, the development and maintenance of Telegram Messenger and the other purposes.” The security is described as “purchase agreements for cryptocurrency” and the filing is signed by Telegram CEO Pavel Durov. This initial sum is most likely the pre-sale stage of the ICO which, as…

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