GLOBAL TECH WRAP: Emails shed light on Google's work with NSA

Epson's Moverio smart glasses
LinkedUp: an app that turns LinkedIn into a dating site

Two sets of emails obtained by Al Jazeera America under a Freedom of Information Act request suggest that Google's cooperation with the National Security Agency (NSA) may have been less coerced than the company has let on.

The emails date back to June 2012 and chronicle communications between NSA director General Keith Alexander and Google executives Eric Schmidt and Sergey Brin.

In one email, Alexander refers to a previous meeting between NSA and Google officials and then invites Schmidt to a four-hour "topic-specific" and "decision-oriented" classified briefing on mobile threats and security.

"Google's participation in refinement, engineering and deployment of the solutions will be essential," Alexander said in the missive. Read Al Jazeera America's full report here.


A new Amazon-Twitter alliance allows US and UK shoppers to buy something from Amazon with a tweet — once they've connected their Amazon and Twitter accounts.

Google Glass has some competition: Epson's $US700 Moverio BT-200, which have just gone on sale to the US public (Google Glass is only for sale to those on a develooper programme).

Like Google Glass, Moverio runs on Google's Android operating system software. But where Google Glass has one screen built into its frame, Epson's new glasses have two.

Another difference: where Google Glass wireless pairs with a watch, Moverio has a custom hand-controller. 

Epson says the glasses are the visual equivalent of having an 80-inch TV strapped to your head, and there's potential to add 3D.

The Wall Street Journal says Moverio is lightweight and comfortable to wear but "this isn’t the sort of thing you’ll want to wear while walking down the street."

Where dating apps like Tinder sync with your Facebook profile, the new LinkedUp uses source code from LinkedIn to screen potential mates by job, industry, age, proximity and gender. 

Giant Chinese e-commerce site Alibaba has filed for an IPO — but in the US, not its home market. Pundits say when Alibaba hits the Nasdaq or NYSE, it could raise $US15 billion to $US20 billion listing 25% of its shares.

That woudl make it the biggest listing since Facebook's $US16 billion IPO in May 2012 (a partial float that valued Facebook at $US106 billion; after an initial plunge, Facebook has recovered and then some for a $US150 billion market cap today).

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