The AmericanMagazine Conference—the annual pow-wow of high profile consumer magazineexecutives—is more than four months away. But the Magazine Publishers ofAmerica just announced the event’s 2008 tagline.Unleash thePower.Sorry. UNLEASH THE POWER. Hear leaders from every facet of the magazine industry and othervisionaries, such as: And informative sessions, including: Jeffrey Katzenberg in conversation with FORTUNE’s Andrew Serwer Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg on challenges scaling operations and growing its brand globally Tom Rogers, President and CEO of TiVo Futurist Paul Saffo Plan ahead to combine your trip with other business, see clients,and take advantage of San Francisco’s many attractions. Great Magazine Advertising Monetizing Beyond the Ad Page How to Re-Ignite a Brand in Challenging Times Jumpstart Your Website Secrets of Five Super-Successful 2008 Redesigns Retail 2012: The New Reality PLUS: Google Campus Visit—a unique opportunity designed especially formagazine executives and editors to interact with Google leaders at theirSilicon Valley headquarters and learn what’s next for them. Last year, you’llrecall, it was “Magabrands”—an awkward term coined by Men’s Health editor andconference chair David Zinczenko who, as the conference progressed, took flakfrom media critics and attendees for coming up with such a convoluted, gooeyphrase to describe what magazines have been doing for years now. That is,extending their brands into new platforms to generate new revenue.While this year’stheme probably won’t be met with the same sort of vitriol, it’s just as … I don’tknow … ridiculous? Maybe it’s the font they use. Or the unfortunate memory ofthat superhero character the MPA created a couple years ago—remember that thing?Captain Read? Really, what the hell was that?But UNLEASHINGPOWER sounds more suited for Monday Night Raw than a boutique hotel in SanFrancisco.Maybe it’s justme.At any rate,here’s a preliminary lineup of what the MPA intends to unleash on attendeescome October:Mark Your Calendar for AMC! Register beforeAugust 27 for big savings.Formore information and to register, visit www.magazine.org/amc.
Now playing: Watch this: Post a comment 29 Photos Car Industry Auto Tech 2020 Lincoln Aviator plug-in hybrid first drive: This changes everything Tags More From Roadshow Toyota Enlarge ImageSoon the batteries for Toyota’s many hybrids, PHEVs and hydrogen cars could be coming from Chinese supplier CATL. Nick Miotke/Roadshow If you’re a major automotive manufacturer, it’s pretty much mandatory that you be working on some kind of electric vehicle development right now, especially if you do a lot of business in China.That’s certainly the position in which Toyota finds itself, so it’s had to go out, beat the bushes and find itself a sizable Chinese EV battery provider — which it did in the form of CATL, according to an announcement made by Toyota on Wednesday.If CATL sounds familiar, it’s because it’s also working with Volvo to provide batteries for that brand and its Polestar subsidiary. CATL is also working with Honda and was in talks with Tesla for a while to provide cells for Gigafactory Shanghai, though that ended up not working out.”To further promote the widespread use of electrified vehicles, CATL and Toyota agree that a stable supply of batteries is critical and that battery technology must be further developed and advanced,” Toyota representatives said in a statement.Stable is the key word there. Batteries are a volatile business, especially considering the vast amounts of relatively rare and expensive minerals they require. Thankfully for companies like CATL, many of those minerals are being mined inside China’s borders, but other firms elsewhere in the world haven’t been so fortunate.This news of Toyota’s battery partnership comes hot on the heels of its announcement that it plans to offer an electrified version of every single Lexus model by 2025 as well as receiving half of its revenue from the sale of electrified vehicles by 2025. Share your voice 2020 Ford Explorer Hybrid first drive: A new kind of Explorer 0 9:29 2019 Land Rover Range Rover P400e review: A hard hybrid to recommend The 2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid requires few sacrifices to save gas On the road: Toyota Mirai Toyota Volvo
Business tycoon Sanjeev Gupta, who is interested in acquiring Tata’s steel business in the U.K., met the British government representatives Tuesday. The U.K. government is hunting for a potential buyer for the loss-making steel business.Tata had announced last week it was putting its entire U.K. operations up for sale. Sajid Javid, Britain’s Business Minister, met Gupta in London Tuesday to determine how serious he was about buying the steel business. Javid is also due to meet Tata Chairman Cyrus Mistry in Mumbai Wednesday, to discuss the process of sale, Reuters reports.Gupta termed the meet as “positive.” He also said that the U.K. government was “highly supportive” and “actively engaged” in terms of finding a possible solution.”The next step is for Tata to define the formal sales process and request indications of interest from potential buyers, “he said in a statement after the meeting, Reuters added.Last week, U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron reportedly met ministers to discuss possible options for the Tata business.Carwyn Jones, Wales’ First Minister, told Reuters that the government is “willing” to discuss solutions for the company’s pension deficit, structural challenges and high energy costs â€” that drove Tata to walk away.The U.K. Business Minister also met other potential buyers but the details have not been revealed. “The important thing is where the buyers are coming forward we are ready to work with them,” Javid was quoted as saying by BBC.Sanjeev Gupta’s Liberty House Group is a U.K.-based steel and non-ferrous metals group, which operates in London, Dubai, Singapore and Hong Kong. It has its assets in Asia, Africa and Britain. The firm’s annual turnover is about $5 billion. Its total production capacity in steel exceeds three million MTPA, according to the company’s website.
Share Smith Collection/Gado/Getty ImagesA couple in Portland, Ore., discovered that their Amazon Echo had recorded their conversation and sent it to one of their contacts.As secret recordings go, the Portland couple’s conversation was pretty mundane: They were talking about hardwood floors.But their Amazon Echo was listening and recording their discussion. The device then sent the recording to someone in their contacts — without the couple’s knowledge.The wife, identified only as Danielle, told Seattle TV station KIRO 7 that they learned something was amiss when they received a phone call from the husband’s employee who lived in Seattle, telling them what he had inadvertently received. He told them to unplug their Alexa devices right away.Danielle says she and her husband went around the house unplugging their devices — which they had in each room, controlling their home’s temperature, lights and security.The employee sent the couple the sound file that the Echo had sent to him, and they were shocked to realize they had essentially been bugged.“I felt invaded,” Danielle told KIRO. “A total privacy invasion. Immediately, I said, ‘I’m never plugging that device in again, because I can’t trust it.’ “How did this happen? Here’s Amazon’s explanation of the unsettling episode:“Echo woke up due to a word in background conversation sounding like ‘Alexa.’ Then, the subsequent conversation was heard as a ‘send message’ request. At which point, Alexa said out loud ‘To whom?’ At which point, the background conversation was interpreted as a name in the customers contact list. Alexa then asked out loud, ‘[contact name], right?’ Alexa then interpreted background conversation as ‘right’. As unlikely as this string of events is, we are evaluating options to make this case even less likely.”That’s right — at least five times in a row, Alexa heard background conversation and misconstrued it as very specific directives. And it all happened without the people in the room knowing that the device was listening, much less recording their conversation and shipping it out, supposedly on their behalf.Last year, a North Carolina man said the same thing had happened to him: His Echo recorded 20 seconds of his conversation and sent it to his insurance agent without his knowledge.Why was the Echo recording the conversation in the first place?“Amazon’s Echo uses seven microphones and noise-canceling tech to listen out for its wake word,” Washington Post technology columnist Geoffrey Fowler explains. “Doing so, it records about a second of ambient sound on the device, which it constantly discards and replaces. But once it thinks it hears its wake word, the Echo’s blue light ring activates and it begins sending a recording of what it hears to Amazon’s computers.”While “home assistants” such as the Amazon Echo, Google Home and Apple HomePod have been big sellers in the past few years, they’ve brought with them a litany of privacy and practical concerns.There was the time an Echo ordered a $170 dollhouse for a 6-year-old who asked Alexa for one. And the time Burger King ran an ad that said, “OK Google, what is the Whopper burger?” — causing Google Home devices to dutifully reply with info from the Whopper Wikipedia page.NPR’s own reporting has spurred voice-activated snafus: Morning Edition ran a story in 2016 about the Echo, which included the phrases “Alexa, give me a news bulletin” and “Alexa, turn on CNN. Set the temperature to 70 degrees.” Some Echos at home complied — by playing an NPR newscast and resetting a listener’s thermostat.But while those episodes had the air of slapstick, these recorded-conversation incidents show what can happen when people welcome devices that are always listening.“The Amazon Echo, despite being small, is a computer — it’s a computer with microphones, speakers, and it’s connected to the network,” Daniel Kahn Gillmor, a staff technologist for the American Civil Liberties Union’s Speech, Privacy and Technology Project, told the Post. “These are potential surveillance devices, and we have invited them further and further into our lives without examining how that could go wrong. And I think we are starting to see examples of that.”Have an Echo and want to know what it has been recording?Fowler offers this advice: “Go into the Alexa app, tap Settings —> History, and then listen to the recordings Alexa has made of you and your family. (While you’re there, you can also delete them).”Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.