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facebook profit hits an all-time high, unaffected by recent scandals — so far

(thibault camus/ap)san francisco — the crisis of public trust confronting facebook has yet to affect the company’s bottom line — at least for the time being.on wednesday, facebook said its first-quarter revenue, which is dominated by advertising, grew by 49 percent to $12 billion. net profit jumped 65 percent from the same period a year earlier to a record $4.9 billion.despite many users saying they deleted facebook as the result of a privacy scandal that erupted in mid-march, 3.4 percent more people logged on each day in march than in the previous quarter. it's possible that the effect of deletions and other fallout will be more notable in the second quarter.“despite facing important challenges, our community and business are off to a strong start in 2018,” mark zuckerberg, fac...





finland has done everything right, but the euro is still making it permanently poorer

finland is a country that has followed every rule and checked every box. (ap photo/david goldman, file)there are three kinds of countries that have been hurt by the euro: ones that did everything wrong, ones that did everything right and all the rest in between.that first group has gotten the most attention because they've done the worst economically and have been the best at confirming our moral intuitions. it makes a certain amount of sense that a country that borrowed a lot of money overseas so its government could go on an unsustainable spending spree, like greece's did, or its banks could inflate a massive housing bubble, like spain's did, would get into trouble. what's a little harder to understand, though, when it comes to this idea of just deserts, is why a country like italy...





amazon’s alexa will soon be teaching your child manners

amazon has an echo dot aimed at kids, as well as some new services for children. (courtesy of amazon)amazon.com's alexa has a little something to teach your kids about manners. after receiving feedback from some parents concerned about how voice assistants are affecting their kids' attitudes, the company updated alexa to reward children who ask for things nicely. kids are some of the biggest fans of voice assistants, with some learning to talk to alexa, apple's siri or google's assistant before they can form full sentences. but some parents have worried that having voice assistants around the house will make their children more rude, since the youngsters can bark demands for a favorite television station or song at any time.[when your kid tries to say ‘alexa’ before ‘mama?...





mother, wife, million-dollar patient - the washington post

chino, calif. — the swelling attacks come on without warning. loukisha olive-mccoy’s lower lip puffs up; then her cheeks and jaw twist and pull, distorting her face into an involuntary grimace. sometimes her tongue will fill up the back of her throat and choke off her breathing.olive-mccoy, 44, has hereditary angioedema (hae), a life-threatening disease so rare that many doctors have only read about it. fortunately, there are cutting-edge drugs to keep the swelling at bay and treat the attacks that break through.loukisha mccoy can afford the millions needed to treat her disease, thanks to a charity funded by drug companies, but her family can't afford to heat their home. (jorge ribas/the washington post)her family relies on food stamps to get by, but the price of just one of olive-mcc...





here’s why president trump invited apple ceo tim cook to the white house

apple chief executive tim cook and former environmental protection agency administrator lisa p. jackson arrive for a state dinner with french president emmanuel macron and president trump at the white house on april 24. (alex brandon/ap)president trump huddled wednesday with apple chief executive tim cook to discuss trade as the white house forges ahead with tariffs on china and other trade policies that have provoked sharp rebukes from the iphone giant and its tech-industry peers.ahead of the meeting, trump tweeted that he and cook would discuss “many things, including how the u.s. has been treated unfairly for many years, by many countries, on trade.”the private discussion at the white house came a day after cook joined trump for the president’s first-ever state dinner, honoring ...





sen. klobuchar presses honda on efforts to track down deadly takata air bags

the national highway traffic safety administration demonstrated how takata air bags can spray shrapnel when they explode. (nhtsa photo)a u.s. senator who heard testimony last month on the recall of takata automotive air bags, which have sprayed shrapnel that has killed 22 people and injured hundreds more, is continuing to put pressure on honda motor co. about its efforts to track down the most dangerous of the air bags.honda acknowledged in communication with the senate committee on commerce, science and transportation last month that 62,307 people continue to drive with air bags that were tainted by high humidity at a takata factory in monclova, mexico, before they were installed in honda or acura vehicles. while most takata inflators go bad over time when exposed to temperature changes a...





global police just shut down world’s largest marketplace that allegedly disrupted millions of sites

(elise amendola/ap)an international police operation recently shut down the world's largest for-hire service that allegedly slowed and disrupted millions of websites using malicious cyber tools, officials said wednesday.law enforcement officials say that administrators of webstresser.org were arrested tuesday, in britain, croatia, canada and serbia. the service was taken offline and its hardware was seized in the united states, the netherlands and germany, officials said.many of webstresser's customers and targets were american; the united states was among the five countries most affected by webstresser's operations, europol said.customers allegedly paid webstresser to carry out cyberattacks on financial institutions, governments and law enforcement agencies using a method known as ...





this year’s mother’s day looks as though it will be one of the best ever

(istock)it looks as though there will be two very happy groups come may 13: moms … and merchants.that’s because a recent survey of more than 7,500 consumers conducted by the national retail federation and prosper insights & analytics is forecasting a near-record $23.1 billion sales year for mother’s day. according to the forecast, 86 percent of americans will be celebrating this year, and it’s estimated that we’ll each spend about $180, on average, on mom.if you’re a small merchant, i hope you’re stocking up your inventory.the biggest sales will probably be from jewelers, who are expected to rake in $4.6 billion. restaurateurs will be serving up dinner and brunch to the tune of $4.4 billion. florists are expected to pull in about $2.6 billion. other winners that day should...





amazon’s alexa will soon be teaching your child manners

amazon has an echo dot aimed at kids, as well as some new services for children. (courtesy of amazon)amazon.com's alexa has a little something to teach your kids about manners. after receiving feedback from some parents concerned about how voice assistants are affecting their kids' attitudes, the company updated alexa to reward children who asks for things nicely. kids are some of the biggest fans of voice assistants, with some learning to talk to alexa, apple's siri or google's assistant before they can form full sentences. but some parents have worried that having voice assistants around the house will make their children more rude, since the youngsters can bark demands for a favorite television station or song at any time.[when your kid tries to say ‘alexa’ before ‘mama...





boeing and airbus, the new ‘super duopoly’

workers at south carolina boeing work on a 787 dreamliner for air india at the plant's final assembly building in 2013. (randall hill/reuters)in april 2016, delta air lines shook up the aviation world by announcing it would buy 75 jets from bombardier, the quebec aircraft manufacturer. such orders are the routine stuff of the aviation industry, but this one was anything but routine. for not only did it allow the financially strapped maker of “regional” jets to finally launch a line of larger fuel-efficient jets into the american market, but it also put bombardier on a course to challenge boeing and airbus in the larger and more lucrative market for bigger planes.now, two years later, having failed to use their legal and political muscle to preserve their highly profitable duopoly, boe...





here's what you need to know about the new gmail

gmail is getting major update starting wednesday. a certain amount of hyperventilation is to be expected when a service used by 1.4 billion people changes anything.i’m here to report it’s going to be okay.truth be told, when google first showed me the redesign, i thought: who asked for this? it’s like gmail got a facelift to look cuter. buttons are rounded and its bubbly new font could have been ripped from a 1992 school yearbook.to get the new gmail design, for now you have to opt in, under the settings menu. eventually, google will make it the default.but i came around after living with the new gmail for a week. it’s cleaner and the stuff you rely on hasn’t moved far. what’s more, it has some good ideas to keep you from missing important emails and to make them more secure. g...





yahoo fined $35 million for failing to disclose cyber breach

(michael probst/ap)the securities and exchange commission on tuesday announced a $35 million fine against the company formerly known as yahoo for failing to tell investors about a massive cyber breach for two years, the first time the regulator has punished a company for such conduct.the web giant learned in 2014 that russian hackers had stolen the user names, email addresses and other key user data of 500 million of its users, the largest breach of its kind at the time. but it didn’t tell investors about it for nearly two years, according to the sec.yahoo left “its investors totally in the dark about a massive data breach,” jina choi, director of the sec’s san francisco regional office, said in a statement.yahoo, which sold its core business to verizon last year for $4.8 bil...





want to work for ikea? your next job interview could be conducted by a russian robot.

(courtesy of robot vera)a russian startup has created a new way to help companies connect with job-seekers and interview them.her name is vera, and she’s able to interview as many as 1,500 job candidates in a single work day, sorting through potential hires at a rate that would take most recruiters months to match.she even sends customized follow-up emails.perhaps more attractive — as far as her clients are concerned — is that vera works full time for free and never burns out.her secret: not being human. officially known as “robot vera,” the master recruiter is an artificially intelligent software technology that uses machine learning, allowing her to refine her conversational skills with more practice. at the moment, vera is being employed by several hundred russian companies to...





how to treat social media addiction

by mark griffiths and daria kussby mark griffiths and daria kussapril 25 at 1:04 pmstudents partake in a group activity at the national center for youth internet addiction treatment, south korea. (jun michael park/the washington post)mark griffiths and daria kuss are psychologists at nottingham trent university in the u.k. they specialize in studying the impact of technology and social media on cognitive and social behavior. nottingham, england — are you addicted to social media? ask yourself these six simple questions:do you spend a lot of time, when you’re not online, thinking about social media or planning to use social media?do you feel urges to use social media more and more over time?do you use social media to forget about personal problems?do you often try to reduce your use of ...





finland has done everything right, but the euro is still making it permanently poorer

finland is a country that has followed every rule and checked every box. (ap photo/david goldman, file)there are three kinds of countries that have been hurt by the euro: ones that did everything wrong, ones that did everything right and all the rest in between.that first group has gotten the most attention because they've done the worst economically and have been the best at confirming our moral intuitions. it makes a certain amount of sense that a country that borrowed a lot of money overseas so its government could go on an unsustainable spending spree, like greece's did, or its banks could inflate a massive housing bubble, like spain's did, would get into trouble. what's a little harder to understand, though, when it comes to this idea of just deserts, is why a country like italy...





what comcast’s $31 billion offer for a u.k. tv company tells us about the cable giant’s ambitions

(matt rourke/ap)comcast said wednesday that it's offering $31 billion to buy the british tv provider sky, officially starting a bidding war between the u.s. cable giant and 21st century fox, which has offered $16.5 billion for the company.but why is a u.k.-based television company such a sought-after piece of property, and what could a deal mean for comcast's customers?the answer can be found in comcast chief executive brian roberts's remarks to investors on an earnings call wednesday morning.“it's a unique asset,” roberts said. “it fits well with the assets we've already got. ... a benefit is, you'd get new geographies and additional scale that gives you optionality.”in other words, a deal would give comcast access to a bigger overseas audience and — according to indu...





boeing and airbus, the new ‘super duopoly’

workers at south carolina boeing work on a 787 dreamliner for air india at the plant's final assembly building in 2013. (randall hill/reuters)in april 2016, delta air lines shook up the aviation world by announcing it would buy 75 jets from bombardier, the quebec aircraft manufacturer. such orders are the routine stuff of the aviation industry, but this one was anything but routine. for not only did it allow the financially strapped maker of “regional” jets to finally launch a new line of larger fuel-efficient jets into the american market, but it put bombardier on a course to challenge boeing and airbus in the larger and more lucrative market for bigger planes.now, two years later, having failed to use their legal and political muscle to preserve their highly profitable duopoly, boei...





bezos' blue origin, musk's space x, and orbital atk are vying to be the first to send people to space

jeffrey p. bezos shows a photo of its new orbital-class rocket during a 2015 ceremony at cape canaveral air force station. (blue origin)for a decade, there was only one company for the pentagon to turn to for launching its satellites into space: the joint venture of lockheed martin and boeing known as the united launch alliance.a few years ago, elon musk’s spacex ended the company’s lucrative monopoly, after suing for the right to compete for the launches. now, two more companies are building rockets that would be capable of vying for the launch contracts, which can be worth hundreds of millions of dollars each.blue origin, the rocket company founded by jeffrey p. bezos, and orbital atk, the dulles-based outfit that already launches cargo to the international space station for nasa an...





fed advances plan to weaken post-financial-crisis rule for biggest banks

(spencer platt/getty images)the federal reserve has proposed new rules that would allow eight of the biggest wall street firms to collectively lower by about $121 billion the capital cushions their banking subsidiaries are required to hold against a collapse, according to federal banking regulators.critics of the plan say it would dangerously weaken a rule put in place after the global financial crisis and intended to ensure that banks have big enough stockpiles of safe capital to survive a panic. the banks say the new rule would give them greater flexibility and would not lead to riskier investment decisions.this month, the fed unveiled a plan to modify rules on what capital banks must hold on reserve in case their assets fail. the proposal would weaken one capital requireme...





here's what you need to know about the new gmail

gmail is getting major update starting wednesday. a certain amount of hyperventilation is to be expected when a service used by 1.4 billion people changes anything.i’m here to report it’s going to be okay.truth be told, when google first showed me the redesign, i thought: who asked for this? it’s like gmail got a facelift to look cuter. buttons are rounded and its bubbly new font could have been ripped from a 1992 school yearbook.but i came around after living with the new gmail for a week. it’s cleaner and the stuff you rely on hasn’t moved far. what’s more, it has some good ideas to keep you from missing important emails and to make them more secure. google is getting much more deeply involved with our messages, and the result moves email in the right direction.my favorite ne...