One Degree News Brief … November 17, 2017

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Amazon launches Echo, Alexa in Canada

TORONTO STAR

Amazon’s voice-activated digital assistant Alexa, along with the voice-controlled Echo speaker devices, are finally available in Canada.

Amazon Canada on Wednesday launched pre-orders for the Echo Dot, Echo and Echo Plus, with “special introductory pricing.” The Echo starts at $99.99 for a limited time, after which it will cost $129.99. The Dot is $49.99 for a limited time and the Plus is $169.99.

The devices are to ship beginning on Dec. 5 and will also be sold at retailers such as The Source and Best Buy.

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Facebook will livestream 47 college basketball games for free this season

RECODE

Facebook is paying for the rights to stream dozens of college basketball games this season in its quest to cement a foothold in the world of live sports programming.

On Thursday, the tech giant announced a new deal with digital sports broadcaster Stadium to stream 47 college basketball games between mid-November and early March. Facebook will pay Stadium for the games, and Stadium will produce the broadcasts exclusively for Facebook. Facebook declined to say how much it’s paying.

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GLOBE AND MAIL

As part of a major redesign and re-engineering of the newsroom to an audience-first strategy, The Globe and Mail is strengthening efforts toward bolder and stronger journalism in a world that is besieged with mixed signals of fake news, filter bubbles and content feeds controlled by algorithms. Along with other notable publishers around the world, The Globe has helped formulate the first system of industry standards for digital news publishing to fortify truth, transparency and trustworthiness.

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Google Maps got a redesign

TECHCRUNCH

The company said in a blog post that it has updated driving, navigation, transit and explore maps to better highlight information that the company thinks will be most relevant. That means gas stations when you’re driving or more prominently featured train and bus stations if you’re riding the rails or hopping on mass transit.

Google also said that maps would get an updated color scheme with new icons added to more easily identify places like a church, cafe, museum or hospital not just by their symbol, but also with a corresponding color to make it even easier to identify.

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“Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.”

— Winston Churchill

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