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Twitter Expands Privacy on Direct Messages

Twitter said Monday it was making it easier to take direct messages private, carving out a bigger space for targeted exchanges on the popular microblogging service.

Previously, direct messaging could only occur between two Twitter users "following" each other, which basically allowed both parties to see whatever they posted publicly.

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Microsoft to Launch First Flagship Store outside U.S. in Sydney

Microsoft on Tuesday said it will open its first flagship store outside the United States in Sydney, as the technology giant expands its physical footprint to take on global rivals Apple and Samsung.

Microsoft Australia's managing director Pip Marlow said the shop, to be located in Sydney's main Pitt Street shopping district, was a "significant development" for the American firm.

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Japan's Maglev Train Notches up New World Speed Record

Japan's state-of-the-art maglev train set a world speed record Tuesday in a test run near Mount Fuji, clocking more than 600 kilometers (373 miles) an hour.

The seven-car maglev -- short for "magnetic levitation" -- train, hit a top speed of 603 kilometers an hour, and managed nearly 11 seconds over 600kph Central Japan Railway said.

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Japan Robot Receptionist Welcomes Shoppers

She can smile, she can sing and this robot receptionist who started work in Tokyo on Monday never gets bored of welcoming customers to her upmarket shop.

"My name is ChihiraAico. How do you do?" she says in Japanese, blinking and nodding to customers in the foyer of Mitsukoshi, Japan's oldest department store chain.

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Germany Still has Some Way to Go to 'Smart Factories'

Collaborative robots and intelligent machinery may have wowed the crowds at this year's Hannover Messe, but experts see German industry as having some way to go towards incorporating them on factory floors in what could become the fourth industrial revolution.

The undoubted star of the world's largest industrial trade fair which closed its doors in the northern German city on Friday was YuMi, a collaborative dual-armed robot made by Swiss-based automation technology group ABB. 

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Cybercrime Now 'Number one' Threat: Europol Chief

Cybercrime has become as big a threat to Europe's security as terrorism, the head of the continent's policing agency warned Friday. 

"The threat online is huge. It is now the number one security concern, alongside terrorism," Europol chief Rob Wainwright said.

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Samsung Removes Logo on Smartphones in Japan

Samsung has removed its corporate logo from its new smartphones sold in Japan, a company spokeswoman confirmed Saturday.

The name Samsung is missing on both the Galaxy S6 and its curved-edge variant, the Galaxy S6 Edge.

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Facebook Strips smiles from Fake 'Like' Sellers

Facebook on Friday said that its war against fake likes is paying off so well that many 'bad actors' who built businesses on the tactic are closing shop.

Advances in technology for recognizing suspicious patterns of likes has enabled the social network  to block such activity by malicious software, fraudulent accounts, and click farm operations that employ armies of low-paid workers.

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New Google Security Chief Looks for Balance with Privacy

Google has a new sheriff keeping watch over the wilds of the Internet.

Austrian-born Gerhard Eschelbeck has ranged the British city of Oxford; cavorted at notorious Def Con hacker conclaves, wrangled a herd of startups, and camped out in Silicon Valley.

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Google Embraces 'Mobile-Friendly' Sites in Search Shake-up

Google is about to change the way its influential search engine recommends websites on smartphones and tablets in a shift that's expected to sway where millions of people shop, eat and find information.

The revised formula, scheduled to be released Tuesday, will favor websites that Google defines as "mobile-friendly." Websites that don't fit the description will be demoted in Google's search results on smartphones and tablets while those meeting the criteria will be more likely to appear at the top of the rankings — a prized position that can translate into more visitors and money.

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