Google HR reportedly advised mental health leave in response to complaints of racist or sexist behavior

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Several current and former Google employees say the company’s human resources department would often suggest mental health counseling or leave in response to complaints about racist or sexist behavior in the workplace, NBC News reported.
The workers described encounters with coworkers that included racist comments about skin color and hairstyles, as well as sexual harassment. When they contacted Google’s human resources department, each was encouraged to take mental health leave, even when their complaints were unrelated to mental health concerns, according to NBC.
The report follows the December firing of Google AI ethics researcher Timnit Gebru, who refused a manager’s request to retract a paper that described the dangers of language…
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Sonos Roam will include Auto Trueplay and new ‘Sound Swap’ feature

On Tuesday, Sonos will introduce its latest product called the Sonos Roam, which The Verge extensively detailed a couple of days ago. Now I’m able to share a bit more about new functionality that will debut first on the tiny, take-everywhere speaker.
My previous report laid out the core specs of the Sonos Roam. Measuring 6.5 inches long and weighing around a pound, the portable speaker will offer up to 10 hours of battery life on a charge. Just like the Move, it will support voice commands for either Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. Sonos plans to sell it for $169, and the Roam will ship in April.
But now on to the new stuff:
The Sonos Roam will include automatic Trueplay.
Like the pricier, larger Move, Sonos is building its Auto… Continue reading…

YouTube has terminated five Myanmar military-run channels as political unrest continues

Photo by Aung Kyaw Htet / SOPA Images / LightRocket via Getty Images YouTube terminated five Myanmar military channels from its platform on Friday, Reuters reports. The removals include YouTube channels for the government-run Myanma Radio and Television (MRTV) network and the military-owned Myawaddy Media used to spread military propaganda in Myanmar.
YouTube’s action is the platform’s first major intervention following the military coup that was staged in February and the subsequent military crackdowns against protesters that have left at least 38 dead. “We have terminated a number of channels and removed several videos from YouTube in accordance with our community guidelines and applicable laws,” a YouTube spokesperson tells The Verge. Prior to the coup, the company also terminated 34 channels used as…
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NASA’s latest Mars rover has the same processor as an iMac from 1998

NASA’s brand-new Perseverance rover is the most advanced machine that’s ever landed on Mars. But when it comes to rovers, “state of the art” is a subjective term. Perseverance is running on none other than a PowerPC 750, a single-core, 233MHz processor with just 6 million transistors that’s most famous for powering the original “Bondi blue” iMac from 1998. It’s the same type of processor that NASA already uses in its Curiosity rover.
That may seem like a waste to some. After all, even with the difficulty of buying computer parts these days, surely NASAcould have found the budget for something like Intel’s $500 Core i9-10900K CPU (with 10 cores and a max clock speed of 5.3GHz) somewhere in the $2.7 billion cost of Perseverance. But as N…
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Apple not switching to USB-C iPhones in the near future, according to Ming-Chi Kuo

Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge The dream of a USB-C iPhone may be dead, according to the latest research note from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. The company reportedly has no plans to adopt USB-C on future iPhone devices or integrate a Touch ID sensor into the power button (two technologies that exist on Apple’s iPad hardware, like the 2020 iPad Air).
The report, obtained by AppleInsider, explains the rationale behind Apple’s decision: “We believe that USB-C is detrimental to the MFi business’s profitability, and its waterproof specification is lower than Lightning and MagSafe,” according to Kuo.
Therefore, instead of a USB-C iPhone, Kuo suggests that Apple may jump straight to a long-rumored portless iPhone that relies exclusively on wireless charging — and…
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How to watch the 2021 Golden Globes online

Photo by VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images Awards season in Hollywood begins Sunday, February 28th, with the 78th Golden Globe Awards, hosted by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. The Golden Globes, usually considered a harbinger of who may take home awards at other shows like the Oscars, will look a bit different this year thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. The hosts and presenters will be in different locations in the US and around the world.
Streaming services have finally come into their own at the Globes, with Netflix leading the pack of with 20 total nominations for its television shows; Hulu has six total nominations, Apple TV Plus has two, and Disney Plus has one. In the motion picture categories (the Globes honor films and TV shows), Netflix leads the way with 22…
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Microsoft’s unreleased Xbox Game Streaming app for Windows includes touch controls, gyro, and more

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Microsoft is finalizing its Xbox Game Streaming app for Windows PCs, which includes access to streaming games from the company’s xCloud service. We’ve managed to get access to the latest version of the Xbox Game Streaming app for Windows, an unannounced and unreleased app. Once released, the app will let Windows users stream games from their Xbox Series S / X consoles, and from xCloud.
Currently, you can’t stream games from the new Xbox consoles to Windows PCs, as this is unsupported in the existing Xbox Console Companion app. This new app will solve that, and also bring xCloud streaming to Windows PCs for the first time. We first got a look at this xCloud app for Windows last year, and it has improved a lot since then.
scoop: here's…
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Texans with disabilities left vulnerable after deep freeze

Volunteers with the Living Hope Wheelchair Association distributed water and supplies to people after Texas’ deep freeze. | Image: Living Hope Wheelchair Association Disaster response plans often fail to include people with disabilities, and the deadly deep freeze that swept across Texas and much of the mainland US last week was no exception.
“A lot of people in our community, they’re like, ‘I’m so damn tired that I have to be resilient. This isn’t our fault,’” says Tomás Aguilar, disaster recovery coordinator for the Living Hope Wheelchair Association in Houston, a group that provides services to immigrants with disabilities. “No, we don’t need a cheerleader. We need water.”
“We don’t need a cheerleader. We need water.” The winter storms that froze up power and water systems last week left a humanitarian disaster in its wake. First, people were left in the brutal cold without power or heat. Then…
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