Basis Points – News in payment industry

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HitchBot – Robot making it way across Canada, one ride at a time

HitchBot is robot created by university professors Frauke Zeller and David Smith. A robot sent hitchhiking across Canada this summer was a part of a social experiment on whether Robots can trust humans. The answer appears to be yes since the robot will be reaching it’s final destination shortly.

The robot began it’s adventure in Halifax last month and will conclude this week in Victoria, British Columbia. HitchBot made it’s way it’s journey on the kindness of strangers who picked up the robot and took him on adventures from visiting their own homes to a rock concert and even a wedding.

Check out HitchBot HERE

VCs stop funding startups that may require Internet Fast Lane

MIT Technology Review has posted an interested tidbit. Some venture capitalists are not funding startups that require fast internet connections for video, audio, and other servies. This is due to the talk about fast lanes that require payment to the ISPs.

The FCC has not yet ruled on new rules of Net Neutrality. Tom Wheeler, FCC’s chairman is asking if ISPs should be able to charge content providers for faster speeds like Netflix service. The rules are scheduled to take place in public comment May 15th.

Brad Burnham of Union Square Ventures has stated that his firm will stay away from startups working on video and media businesses. This will in the end hurt innovation and startups whose backbone is video, audio, or media consumption.

via Technology Review

Health Inspectors Are Reading Your Yelp Reviews

New York City’s health department was trying to track down outbreak of food-borne illness 3 years ago at a particular restaurant. One Health Inspector took upon himself to check Yelp for reviews where people got sick.

The agency created a Yelp profile and messaged people who got sick at this restaurant to find out more info on the outbreak. After this inspectors now are using Yelp to track down outbreaks. The department uses data feeds, keywords such as “vomit,” “diarrhea,” and “food poisoning, and public reviews to track down outbreaks of food-borne illnesses.

via Business Week goes live as founder becomes Internet Billionaire

Photograph by Imaginechina via AP Photo
Liu joined forces with another Billionaire, Pony Ma of Tencent to fight the battle against Alibaba, Baidu and Tencent.

Tencent owns 15 percent stake in which was purchased for $215 million. shares is priced at $19 apiece making it’s value around $26 billion. runs more like Amazon where they will sell goods directly to people in China while Alibaba is more like an Ebay.

via Business Week

Mark Zuckerberg sued

Mark Zuckerberg who bought out all his neighbors to have some peace and quiet just got sued. Mircea Voskerician a developer who wanted to purchase a property next door to Zuckerberg agreed to not buy it provided Zuckerberg introduce him to Zuckerbergs rich friends. Now Voskerician is suing as he feels Zuckerberg failed to live up to the verbal agreement.

via Fortune

US Cellular brings LTE to more markets

US Cellular is bringing LTE into several markets. The first markets will include Iowa, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Illinois, Maryland, Missouri, New Hampshire, Vermont, Virginia and West Virginia. It is still not known when they will pull the switch into 4G. For now you can check the map on the site for coverage areas of LTE.

via Engadget

Microsoft to buy Netflix?

Netflix shares are trading high on rumors that Microsoft might buy up the company. This rumor could be fueled by Netflix CEO Reed Hastings stepping down from the Microsoft Board. If Microsoft is planning on bidding on Netflix they could not have the CEO sitting on the conversation. And Microsoft is continuing to evolve their 360 Live service.

via Forbes