Mashable: Facebook’s Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses are just an overpriced influencer toy

Mashable: Facebook’s Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses are just an overpriced influencer toy. “…unlike Google Glass with its small screen and internet connectivity, there’s no promise of a futuristic, wearable computer here. Facebook’s newest bit of hardware comes with such a comically limited and shoddily executed feature set for the price that it’s hard to take it seriously as a product at all. This is just an expensive toy for influencers seemingly designed to make Facebook look ‘cool’ again, built for a world where ‘Stories’ are now widely known as ephemeral and easily forgotten snippets of our social media lives.”

Yahoo News: Booming industry for fake Google reviews has ‘evaded detection’

Yahoo News: Booming industry for fake Google reviews has ‘evaded detection’. “A booming industry has emerged in fake Google (GOOGL) reviews, with businesses across the UK paying to artificially boost their ratings online. According to an investigation by consumer group Which?, fake reviewers were employing similar manipulative tactics for a wide range of businesses – from a stockbroker in Canary Wharf to a bakery in Edinburgh.”

The Verge: Google salvaged Robinhood’s one-star rating by deleting nearly 100,000 negative reviews

The Verge: Google salvaged Robinhood’s one-star rating by deleting nearly 100,000 negative reviews. “Google is actively removing negative reviews of the Robinhood app from the Google Play Store, the company confirmed to The Verge. After some disgruntled Robinhood users organized campaigns to give the app a one-star review on Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store — and succeeded in review-bombing it all the way down to a one-star rating — the company has now deleted enough reviews to bring it back up to nearly four stars.” This is nothing new. Yelp deleted many negative reviews of a dentist who killed a famous lion in 2015. Meanwhile if someone made a demonstrably false statement in a review of a local business during the same timeframe, Yelp couldn’t be bothered to remove it. Do not ask me how I know this.

Washington Post: What negative candle reviews might say about the coronavirus

Washington Post: What negative candle reviews might say about the coronavirus . “Terri Nelson had an unusual question about covid-19: If the virus robs people of their sense of smell, would that be reflected in online reviews of fragrant products? To find out, the Portland, Ore., science illustrator and cartoonist said she looked up reviews of ‘the stinkiest holiday thing I could think of’ — scented candles. ‘There are angry ladies all over Yankee Candle’s site reporting that none of the candles they just got had any smell at all,’ she wrote on Twitter last week. ‘I wonder if they’re feeling a little hot and nothing has much taste for the last couple days too,’ she added, a nod to other common coronavirus symptoms.”

CNBC: Amazon is filled with fake reviews and it’s getting harder to spot them

CNBC: Amazon is filled with fake reviews and it’s getting harder to spot them. “From Facebook groups where bad actors solicit paid positive reviews to bots and click farms that upvote negative reviews to take out the competition, fake reviews are getting harder to spot. In July, UCLA and USC released a study that found more than 20 fake review related Facebook groups with an average of 16,000 members. In more than 560 postings each day, sellers offered a refund or payment for a positive review, usually around $6.

Amazon Echo Frames: We decided we don’t really want to wear Alexa (CNET)

CNET: Amazon Echo Frames: We decided we don’t really want to wear Alexa. “…the Day One Edition of Amazon’s Echo Frames is very much a beta product. If Amazon wants to truly lead in smart glasses, it needs to make big improvements on the frames’ sound quality, build and performance. Otherwise, the Echo Frames run the risk of joining the tech graveyard with Glass, Spectacles and the rest of them.”

Washington Post: I’ve worn Alexa-enabled glasses for two weeks. They’re driving me bananas.

Washington Post: I’ve worn Alexa-enabled glasses for two weeks. They’re driving me bananas.. “After two weeks with the $180 Echo Frames, I can report that you have to really love Alexa to want to wear it on your face. But the Frames offer a fascinating view of the state of the art in virtual assistants — and perhaps also the state of our dystopia. They’re one of Amazon’s first true ‘hearables’: wearable tech designed for hearing information, rather than seeing it.”

Column: Would you write a 5-star Amazon review in return for a $20 bribe? (Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles Times: Column: Would you write a 5-star Amazon review in return for a $20 bribe . “It won’t be a news flash to anyone that a significant percentage of online reviews are untrustworthy. For as long as reviews have been posted on websites, there have been attempts by consumers and businesses to game the system. Nor will anyone be shocked to learn that a behemoth like Amazon has a hard time policing its own site. The company has been scrambling for years to battle both dubious reviews and counterfeit goods.”

Make Tech Easier: Zorin OS 15.1 Review

Make Tech Easier: Zorin OS 15.1 Review. “Hailed as the last good version of Windows by many, Windows 7 is now officially retired. Zorin OS’s creators know this leaves a massive chunk of users with a choice between two equally uncomfortable solutions: upgrade to Windows 10 or jump ship to Linux. This is primarily the user group Zorin OS targets and, to Microsoft’s chagrin and as we’ll see, probably the better choice.”

Meet the new Microsoft Edge: Your move, Google (ZDNet)

ZDNet: Meet the new Microsoft Edge: Your move, Google. “In 1995, at the dawn of the Internet era, Marc Andreessen famously predicted that his rocket ship of a startup, Netscape Communications Corporation, would soon reduce Windows to ‘a poorly debugged set of device drivers.’ Netscape is, alas, long gone, and Andreessen’s bold assertion is just a footnote in the great book of Internet Quotes, but it eventually came true. Sort of.”

Ubuntu 19.10: It’s fast, like “make old hardware feel new” fast (Ars Technica)

Ars Technica: Ubuntu 19.10: It’s fast, like “make old hardware feel new” fast. “Leaves are turning. Temperatures have dipped. These are sure signs—if you live in the Northern Hemisphere, at least—that Canonical’s Autumn release is upon us. Things are a bit different in 2019, however. Not only is Ubuntu 19.10 nicknamed Eoan Ermine (no, I don’t know how you pronounce it either), but it’s the best non-LTS Ubuntu release Canonical has ever put out.”