technology

Consumer drones look like child's play after you get a look at the unmanned, water-dropping helicopter that was pitched to the federal government Wednesday. The K-MAX chopper is the largest of several remotely-piloted firefighting aircraft to get a tryout this year.

Pluto is not dead. That's the bottom line, according to new research published in the journal Science. The dwarf planet is home to mountains, glaciers and a hazy atmosphere that stretches for a hundred miles above the surface.

Tens of thousands of cars that drive themselves are about to hit the streets. Sort of. Last year, the electric carmaker Tesla started putting cameras and sensors into its Model S vehicles — making it possible, one day, for the devices to become the driver's eyes, ears and even hands. And today is the day.

The way Tesla has chosen to deliver this feature to car owners is peculiar, but let's start with what self-driving even means.

Football's popularity has made it among the most lucrative business franchises. So it should come as no surprise that the NFL and other organizations holding the broadcasting rights to games felt very strongly about Deadspin and SB Nation, popular sports publications, attracting readers by posting highlights on Twitter.

What came next were complaints of copyright violations. Then came Twitter's suspension of the accounts. Now comes the question: Do GIFs of sports highlights qualify as fair use?

Michael Mattmiller in one of Seattle's secret data centers. He says data helps government work better, but he's trying to cut back a bit and disseminate a uniform data privacy policy across all city departments.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Somewhere in an office tower in downtown Seattle is a floor filled with data servers. Some of that data is about you. You might show up in a traffic camera video. Your personal information might show up in a utility bill.

Seattle collects a lot of such data. But data can be hacked and information can be misused. That’s why the city’s rethinking how and when it collects your personal data.

Amazon.com
Flickr Photo/Soumit Nandi (CC BY NC ND)/http://bit.ly/1VOQgCK

David Hyde speaks with Todd Bishop about why Amazon (is rumored to be) opening a brick and mortar store in Seattle, and how he got his hands on some blueprints. Also: the device that could save Microsoft.

Christina Lomasney, CEO of Modumetal
Courtesy of Modumetal

Imagine a highway guardrail crafted from a new kind of metal that doesn’t rust. Or a car that you design yourself one day, is delivered to your door the next and weighs a fraction of what current vehicles do.

The first exists, thanks to a Seattle startup called Modumetal. The latter … well, that might take a little longer, CEO Christina Lomasney told KUOW’s David Hyde.

Cybercrime is costing the global economy nearly half a trillion dollars a year, according to the insurer Allianz. It's a major threat to businesses, which are looking for ways to protect themselves. One option is cybercrime insurance.

Want to follow what the presidential candidates are saying on Facebook, but not quite ready to turn over your news feed to pleas for money, stilted memes and behind-the-scenes pics from Iowa and New Hampshire?

Interested in hearing more from, say, Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, but a little hesitant to declare to your Facebook friends that you "like" them?

There's a hack for that!

This post was updated at 6:20 p.m. ET

The Federal Aviation Administration is proposing to fine a Chicago-based drone operator $1.9 million for repeatedly violating FAA regulations and flying in restricted airspace. The FAA charges that the company, SkyPan International, conducted 65 flights in the skies over Chicago and New York, some of the nation's most restricted and congested airspace. Forty-three of the flights took place over New York, without clearance from air traffic controllers.

KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

David Hyde talks with Mark Rosewater, head designer for the card game Magic: The Gathering, about changing social attitudes about gaming culture.

Blaise Agüera y Arcas at The Cloud Room.
Courtesy of The Goodship Academy of Higher Education/Eileen Namanny

Seattle is a great city for lectures, and now there’s a new series to cater to “high minded” individuals who want to combine an interesting talk with a little marijuana.

Jody Hall, founder of Cupcake Royale and producer of marijuana edibles with The Goodship Company, believes our society is starving for human connection. She promotes the responsible use of marijuana as a conduit to community building.

Marcie Sillman talks to Jason Andrews, CEO of Spaceflights Industries, about the booming space industry in the Northwest. 

Amazon To Uber Drivers: Work Here Instead!

Sep 30, 2015

Kim Malcom talks to Wall Street Journal reporter Greg Bensinger about Amazon Flex, the e-commerce giant's new on-demand delivery system, and what it means for rideshare companies like Uber.

Twitter seems simple — just type in 140 characters and hit enter, right? But Twitter can be tough. Building an audience. Keeping that audience. Finding a voice. Cutting through all the chatter. It's a lot, especially if you're a busy elected official.

Well, elected officials, fear not! Twitter itself is here to help. NPR recently discovered that the social media giant has a very special handbook just for people running for elected office. And it's 136 pages long.

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