Top News for February 14, 2014

Viber

Here are today's top stories from Tech News Today for February 14, 2014:

  1. Japan’s online commerce giant Rakuten bought the messaging app Viber for $900 million in cash. Read more at recode.net.

  2. Two major Bitcoin exchanges this week stopped trading because of denial of service attacks. The exchanges, Mt. Gox and Bitstamp, weren’t alone is being affected. The attack cratered the value of Bitcoin, and caused errors in routine transactions. Read more at spectrum.ieee.org.

  3. Facebook’s gender options used to be simple: male or female. But now it’s, well, it’s complicated. A third gender option called “custom” provides a drop-down menu of 56 gender options once you start typing in the custom box. The new options include pan-gender, gender variant, two-spirit and the somewhat geeky sounding “non-binary.” Read more at slate.com.

  4. The world’s largest solar project started producing electricity yesterday. The two point two billion dollar Ivanpah solar thermal power plant has more than 300,000 computer-controlled mirrors that reflect sunlight onto boilers, which create steam that turn turbines. The plant is part-owned by Google, and can provide power to 140,000 homes. Read more at mercurynews.com.

  5. Taco Bell is testing a mobile phone-based ordering at five Southern California-based locations. They plan to expand nationwide by the end of the year. Read more at zdnet.com.

For insight, analysis, and discussion of these topics and more, check out Tech News Today for February 14, 2014.