How to watch college football without cable – the 2021 season continues with new matchups on September 25

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Notre Dame College Football
Notre Dame’s college football team faces off against Wisconsin on September 25.

  • The 2021 NCAA college football season began on August 28 and runs through December.
  • Games are broadcast on local stations, national networks, and college sports channels.
  • You can watch select college football matches without cable via live TV streaming services like Sling TV.

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The 2021 NCAA college football season kicked off in late August and will continue through December. Playoffs occur after the regular season ends, and the championship game is currently scheduled for January 10.

As we enter Week Four, several exciting matchups are set for September 25. Most notably, Notre Dame faces Wisconsin at 12 p.m. ET on Fox, and Texas A&M takes on Arkansas at 3:30 p.m. ET on CBS.

College football games are primarily broadcast in one of three ways: on local channels, on cable networks, or on college sports networks. Select games will also be available to stream via ESPN+.

Below, we broke down some of the best ways to watch college football without cable, so you can stay up to date with your favorite teams.

How to watch college football without cable

You can watch local college football games for free by using an HDTV antenna. In order to watch games that are broadcast on pay-TV or college sports networks, you need a subscription to a streaming service like Sling TV, Hulu with Live TV, or YouTube TV.

The core local channels with access to college football games are ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC. National stations like ESPN, Fox Sports 1 (FS1), and CBSSN broadcast select college football games. Additional games are available through college sports networks such as the ACC Network, Big Ten Network, and SEC Network.

The number of channels that broadcast college football games can be a little overwhelming, so we put together a list featuring some of the best ways to stream games without a cable subscription.

Here’s a roundup of services you can use to watch college football without cable:

HDTV Antenna

1byone HDTV antenna

TV Antenna (small)

If your main concern is rooting for your local college football team, an HDTV antenna is one of the most affordable options. A one-time purchase of an inexpensive antenna unlocks access to over-the-air (OTA) signals near you, and allows you to stream any available local affiliates of ABC, CBS, Fox, or NBC. 

An HDTV antenna is a great, budget-friendly option for streaming local games and does not require any monthly subscription. The major downside is that it doesn’t give you access to games broadcast on cable channels like ESPN or out-of-market games.

What college football channels you can get: 

  • ABC
  • CBS
  • Fox
  • NBC

Sling TV

sling tv

TV (small)

Sling TV is one of the most affordable live TV streaming services with access to college football games. Sling’s two core plans, Orange and Blue, start at just $35 a month. If you want to watch games broadcast on ESPN and ESPN2, then Sling Orange is a great choice. Looking for the college football games airing on FS1 and NBC? Then Sling Blue is the best plan for you. 

Sling also offers a bundle option that combines all the channels from the Orange and Blue plan for just $50 a month. New customers to Sling TV currently receive $25 off their first month of service to the Orange or Blue plans, and $30 off their first month of the combined plan.

For an extra $11 a month, you can add access to college sports channels like the Big Ten Network and the SEC Network with the Sports Plus add-on package.

What college football channels you can get: 

Sling Orange:

  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • Stadium
  • ACC Network*
  • ACC Network Extra*
  • ESPNU*
  • SEC Network*
  • SEC Network+*
  • Pac-12 Network*

Sling Blue:

  • NBC
  • Fox
  • FS1
  • Stadium
  • Pac-12 Network*
  • Big Ten Network*

*Available as an add-on channel

Hulu with Live TV

Hulu on TV

+ Live TV (small)

If you want to get access to a vast library of movies, TV shows, and originals with your live TV subscription service, Hulu + Live TV could be a great fit for your needs. A subscription to Hulu + Live TV starts at $65 a month. 

With Hulu + Live TV, you get access to available local affiliate channels, like ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox. You also unlock many important broadcast channels for watching nationally televised college football games such as ESPN, ESPN2, FS1, and more. 

Unlike Sling TV, Hulu + Live TV includes access to the SEC Network and ESPNU in their basic subscription plan.

What college football channels you can get: 

  • ABC
  • CBS
  • NBC
  • Fox
  • CBSSN
  • ESPN
  • ESPN2
  • ESPNU
  • FS1
  • ACC Network
  • Big Ten Network
  • SEC Network

YouTube TV

YouTube TV logo

TV (small)

As a live TV streaming service, YouTube TV includes many of the same features as Hulu + Live TV without the vast catalog of on-demand entertainment. A subscription to YouTube TV starts at $65 a month.

The channels available with a YouTube TV subscription closely mirror what is offered through Hulu + Live TV. You get access to local affiliates and all the important cable channels like ESPN, FS1, and CBSSN. 

Similar to Hulu + Live TV, college sports channels, such as the SEC Network, Big Ten Network, and ESPNU are included as part of the base plan for YouTube TV. The one main difference between the two services is that you can purchase a Sports Plus add-on for YouTube TV that costs $11 a month and includes the Stadium College Sports channel.

What college football channels you can get: 

  • ABC
  • CBS
  • NBC
  • Fox
  • CBSSN
  • ESPN
  • ESPN2
  • ESPNU
  • FS1
  • ACC Network
  • Big Ten Network
  • SEC Network

FuboTV

FuboTV

TV (Starter Plan) (small)

FuboTV is another quality live TV streaming service with access to college football games. Starting at $65 a month, the streaming service has the same basic rate as Hulu + Live TV and YouTube TV.

You can watch games that air on local affiliate channels and core broadcast channels with FuboTV. The streaming service offers certain college sports channels in its base plan, like the Big Ten Network and CBS Sports Network, but the options are more limited than what is offered through Hulu + Live TV or YouTube TV.

Certain channels with college football games, such as the ACC Network, SEC Network, and ESPNU, are available in add-on packages for FuboTV.

What college football channels you can get: 

  • ABC
  • CBS
  • NBC
  • Fox
  • CBSSN
  • ESPN
  • ESPN2
  • ESPNU*
  • FS1
  • ACC Network*
  • Big Ten Network
  • SEC Network*
  • Pac-12 Network*
  • Stadium*

*Available as an add-on channel

Paramount Plus

Paramount + logo

Essential Monthly Plan (ad-supported) (small)

If your main concern is watching the SEC football games airing on CBS, then Paramount Plus is a great streaming service for you. Plans for Paramount Plus start at $5 a month and include access to the college football games broadcast on CBS.

You also get thousands of hours of on-demand movies, TV shows, and original content with a subscription to Paramount Plus.

 

ESPN+

ESPN+ logo

Monthly Subscription Service (small)

ESPN+ doesn’t give you access to the ESPN channel, but for $7 a month, you can live stream select college football games from the MVFC, Ohio Valley, Southern Conference, and more. 

This is a great supplemental streaming service if you want to watch more niche college football games that are often not nationally broadcast.

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How to track changes and add comments in Google Docs using Suggesting mode

students working together on laptops in library
Tracking changes in Google Docs is a great way to collaborate on projects.

  • You can track changes in Google Docs by using Suggesting mode.
  • Collaborators with Commenter or Editor permissions can use Suggesting mode, however only editors can accept or reject changes.
  • Comments are another way to communicate with collaborators and flag any sections that need work.
  • Visit Insider’s Tech Reference library for more stories.

Google Docs is a helpful tool when working with collaborators, as it allows everyone to view the file simultaneously and see edits in real time. Gone are the days of having to save and share multiple versions of the same file – with Google Docs, everyone has access to the most updated version.

If you like using Track Changes in Microsoft Word, there’s a similar feature in Google Docs called Suggesting mode. Suggesting mode has the added benefit of allowing editors to see proposed changes in real time and accept them or reject them in a more seamless, efficient manner.

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How to track changes in Google Docs using Suggesting mode

When you’re working with other people on the same Google Doc, Suggesting mode is a helpful way for people to make edits without deleting the original text.

If you’re familiar with Track Changes in Microsoft Word, it’s pretty much the same thing, however with Google Docs changes can be made and accepted in real time, rather than having to save and share multiple versions of a document.

Here’s how to use Suggesting mode to track changes in Google Docs.

On the Google Docs website:

1. Open a file on Google Docs.

2. Click the pencil icon on the right side of the toolbar, then click Suggesting.

Google Docs screenshot with Suggesting mode highlighted
Users with Commenter capabilities can only use Suggesting mode.

3. Add, rearrange, or delete text in the document. Your suggestions will be highlighted in green, with details on the suggested changes appearing with a timestamp in the right margin.

Google Docs screenshot showing edits made using Suggesting mode
Suggesting mode allows collaborators to make changes to the Google Doc while preserving the original text until edits are accepted.

4. If you have editing capabilities, click the check mark icon to accept suggested changes or the “X” icon to reject them.

On the Google Docs mobile app:

1. Open a file on the Google Docs app for iPhone, iPad, or Android.

2. Tap the More icon (it looks like three dots) in the top-right corner.

iPhone screenshot of the Google Docs app highlighting the more icon
Here, you can also use tools like “Find and replace” and “Word count.”

3. Tap the slider next to Suggest changes to turn on the feature.

Screenshot of the Google Docs app with the Suggest changes slider highlighted
The switch turns blue when “Suggest changes” is on.

4. Make changes to the document, then tap the check mark in the top-right corner when you’re finished.

How to share a document to get other people’s suggestions

When sharing a Google Doc, you can set permissions for collaborators to control who can make or accept edits, who can just leave comments, and who can only view the document.

1. Open a file on Google Docs.

2. Click the Share button in the top-right corner of the screen.

3. Add specific people or groups and set their permissions to Viewer, Commenter, or Editor. Write them a message (optional), then click Send. This will send collaborators an email with a link to the Google Doc.

Google Docs screenshot highlighting the Share menu
Share your Google Doc with collaborators via email using this option.

4. Alternatively, get a link to share with collaborators by clicking Change underneath Get Link. Set the permissions to Viewer, Commenter, or Editor. Click Copy link, then share the link in an email, text message, or however you want.

Google Docs screenshot highlighting the Share link menu
To prevent having to enter in the name of every collaborator or individually granting edit access, consider using a universal link.

How to use comments in Google Docs

Comments are a helpful way to communicate with collaborators within a Google Doc without having to make notes within the text itself.

Add and edit comments:

1. Open a file on Google Docs.

2. Highlight the section of text you want to comment on, then click the Add Comment icon on the right margin or in the toolbar.

Google Docs screenshot highlighting the Add Comment icon
The “Add Comment” icon looks like a speech bubble with a plus sign inside it.

3. Type your comment in the comment box, then click Comment.

Google Docs screenshot highlighting the Comment button
You can tag specific users in a comment by typing the at @ symbol, then entering their email address.

Reply to comments:

1. Click on the comment you want to reply to.

2. Enter your reply in the text box that appears below the comment, then click Reply.

Google Docs screenshot highlighting the Reply option for comments
Replying to comments allows you to have a discussion with fellow collaborators without interrupting the flow of the text in the Google Doc.

Resolve comments:

If you are an editor, click the check mark on a comment. This will resolve the comment and hide any comments underneath the original one. If there’s a specific collaborator you want to flag for a section in a Google Doc, you can assign them a task via a comment.

Google Docs screenshot highlighting the check mark on a comment
The check mark accepts the suggested change or resolves the comment.

How to use version history and compare documents

Google Docs makes it simple to view past versions of a file without having to save multiple versions. Simply click the Last edit was link at the top of the page to view or restore a previous version. For example, if a section was deleted from a Google Doc early on and you want to add that section back in, you can copy it from a past version and paste it into the current version.

Google Docs screenshot highlighting version history
Past versions of a Google Doc are labeled with timestamps.

There’s also a new tool called Compare documents that allows you to see the differences between two documents. To access it, click Tools, then Compare documents. If you have multiple editors on your document, saving a separate version of the original will allow you to compare the differences between that and the final document.

How to create a Google doc on your computer or mobile deviceHow to edit Google Docs offline on your computer or smartphoneHow to insert a text box or custom shape in Google DocsHow to print directly from Google Docs on any device

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ESPN has a bundle deal with UFC 266 and an annual ESPN+ subscription – here’s how to save 35% in time for Saturday’s fight

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Valentina Shevchenko UFC Ko
Valentina Shevchenko will defend the UFC women’s flyweight championship at UFC 266.

UFC PPV Event + One Year Membership (small)

UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski and women’s flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko will defend their titles in the co-main event of UFC 266 on September 25 in Las Vegas. Nick Diaz will also return to UFC after a six-year hiatus to fight Robbie Lawler.

The main card of UFC 266 is an ESPN+ exclusive and costs $70 in addition to an ESPN+ membership. ESPN+ normally costs $7 a month or $70 for an annual subscription, but new subscribers coming in for UFC 266 can get a 35% discount if they bundle the PPV event with one year of service.

With the deal, you’ll pay $89.98 for UFC 266 and a full year of ESPN+. Without the deal, that combination would cost $14o.

The bundle also presents a good alternative for people who might be thinking of signing up for a monthly ESPN+ plan just to watch the PPV. If you sign up for one month of ESPN+ and buy UFC 266, it will cost you $77. The bundle deal gives you 11 more months of ESPN+ for only $13 more.

After a year, your ESPN+ subscription will renew at the normal $70 a year price unless you cancel it. Check out our full ESPN+ breakdown for more info about what’s included with the service.

If you’re looking for more details on UFC 266 and upcoming events, our Insider combat sports correspondent Alan Dawson is always following the latest news, rumors, and results.

UFC PPV Event + One Year Membership (small)

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Former Apple engineer says the button on iPhones asking apps not to track you is a ‘dud’ that gives users a ‘false sense of privacy’

Apple Privacy
  • In April, Apple rolled out a privacy feature that allows users to ask apps not to track their data.
  • A new study found popular iPhone apps are still collecting user data – even if they’re asked not to.
  • Apple claims “what happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone.” A former employee says argues that’s not the case.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Johnny Lin, a former Apple engineer and co-founder of the software company Lockdown Privacy says Apple’s “Ask App Not To Track” button is a “dud” that gives users “a false sense of privacy,” according to a Washington Post report.

Even if users request apps not to collect their activity across other companies’ apps and websites, popular iPhone apps like Subway Surfers still collect personal data, a new study by Lockdown Privacy determined.

“We found that App Tracking Transparency made no difference in the total number of active third-party trackers,” the study says. “We further confirmed that detailed personal or device data was being sent to trackers in almost all cases.”

Sybo, the company that makes Subway Surfers, told The Washington Post that “in order for the game to function properly, some data is communicated to Ad Networks,” but did not explain why detailed personal information was required. “As a company, we do not track users for advertising purposes without their consent,” Sybo added.

“When the user selects ‘Ask App Not to Track,’ the app is informed that the user would not like to be tracked by any means, and all developers – including Apple – are strictly required to comply with the user’s choice,” an Apple spokesperson told Insider. “If we discover that a developer is not honoring the user’s choice, we will work with the developer to address the issue, or they will be removed from the App Store.”

Lockdown Privacy’s findings are in stark contrast to Apple’s privacy-focused marketing campaigns, highlighted in advertisements like this giant billboard in Las Vegas claiming “What happens on your iPhone, stays on your iPhone.”

A 2019 Apple privacy advertisement in Las Vegas
A 2019 Apple privacy advertisement in Las Vegas

Critics of the ad have called it misleading. Much of what users do on their iPhones and the data they generate doesn’t stay on their devices. iPhones routinely send some data to wireless carriers, websites, app developers – and to Apple’s own servers and services.

Apple recently announced plans to update its iOS software to scan iPhones for child sexual abuse imagery, but has since delayed the plan after criticism from privacy advocates.

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Amazon will start charging a $10 fee for Whole Foods deliveries across the US after years of offering the service for free

whole foods prime delivery amazon
  • Amazon will add a $9.95 fee to Whole Foods grocery deliveries through Prime across the US.
  • The company initially piloted the program in August across six cities.
  • The company said the service charge will be implemented October 25 and help offset operating costs.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Amazon is tacking on a $9.95 delivery fee to Prime orders of Whole Foods’ items across the US.

A Whole Foods spokesperson told Insider customers have already been notified of the fee via email. The additional charge will go into effect across the country on October 25.

The spokesperson said the add-on expense will help the chain avoid raising prices on its products and offset rising operating costs for delivery orders, including equipment and technology. The fee will not impact grocery pickup orders or Amazon’s grocery delivery service, Amazon Fresh, which is available in select markets.

“Our prices are consistent between the store and online options, which is something you don’t see with a lot of our competitors,” the spokesperson said. “We are starting to see more customers come back to shop in stores, which is something we encourage with our contactless payment options.”

The company initially piloted the fee in late August across six markets, including Detroit, Boston, and Chicago areas, Bloomberg first reported.

Whole Foods launched its grocery delivery service in 2018, shortly after e-commerce giant Amazon bought the chain for $13.7 billion in 2017. The grocer offered free deliveries for Prime members who had bought over $35 in groceries.

The Whole Foods service quickly went head-to-head with other top Amazon delivery options, including Prime Pantry and Amazon Fresh. In January, Amazon shut down its Prime Pantry service in order to streamline its grocery offerings.

During the onset of the pandemic, grocery services like Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods delivery became increasingly popular as more customers looked to social distance. But, as the cost of goods continues to rise with increased shipping costs, as well as product and labor shortages, the new fee indicates Amazon may not be immune to inflation.

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IMDb TV has movies and shows you can watch for free with ads, including hits like ‘The Hunger Games’ and ‘Schitt’s Creek’

When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

IMDb TV streaming service
IMDbTV is a free streaming service with ads.

  • IMDb TV is a streaming service from Amazon that lets you watch movies and shows for free.
  • No subscription is needed, but the service is ad-supported.
  • From “Die Hard” to “Schitt’s Creek,” a variety of films and series are available to stream right now.

Table of Contents: Masthead StickyIMDb TV (small)

With so many quality streaming services available, your monthly entertainment bill can quickly add up. If you’re looking to save money, free streaming options like IMDb TV might help you cut back on expenses.

To help you decide whether IMDb TV is worth your time, we broke down the streaming service’s key features, best programs, and more. The catalog of available content rotates, however, so most movies and shows are only on the platform for a limited amount of time.

What is IMDb TV?

IMDb TV is an ad-supported streaming service owned by Amazon where you can watch movies and shows for free. The ever-changing catalog currently includes popular movies like “How to Train Your Dragon” and “The Hunger Games,” as well as quality TV series like “Mad Men” and “Fringe.”

The streaming service even has a few original series such as “Pretty Hard Cases” and “Leverage: Redemption.” “Judy Justice,” a new courtroom show starring Judge Judy Sheindlin, premieres November 1 on IMDb TV.

Is IMDb TV free?

Yes, IMDb TV is free to watch. Instead of charging you a monthly subscription fee for access, the service has commercial interruptions. All you need to do is create an Amazon account, and then you can start watching movies and shows for free on IMDb TV.

IMDb TV (small)

If you want ad-free entertainment with even more movies and shows to choose from, you can get a Prime Video membership for $9 a month. Prime Video is also included with a full Amazon Prime subscription for $13 a month. New members receive their first month for free, and students can claim a discounted $6 monthly rate. You can learn more about Prime Video in our full guide.

Prime Video Monthly Subscription (small)Prime 30-Day Free Trial (small)

Where can I stream IMDb TV?

Viewers who want to watch movies and TV shows for free on IMDb TV can stream entertainment with the dedicated IMDb TV app for smartphones, tablets, web browsers, Roku, Fire TV, LG smart TVs (2018 and newer), Google TV, Android TV, PlayStation 4 consoles, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S consoles.

In addition to the standalone app, you can stream IMDb TV directly inside Amazon’s Prime Video app.

Does IMDb TV have live channels?

Although IMDb TV does not include access to traditional cable channels, you can watch continuous, ad-supported streams of themed content.

Certain IMDb TV channels, like “BBC Food” and “Game Show Central,” air multiple shows revolving around a similar topic. “This Old House,” “Forensic Files,” and other series have standalone channels featuring a live stream of various episodes. Fans of “The Walking Dead” and its spin-offs will enjoy streaming “The Walking Dead Universe” channel.

What are the best movies on IMDb TV?

Die hard
“Die Hard”

You can choose from a diverse catalog of movies to watch for free on IMDb TV, like “Die Hard” and “Marley & Me.” Enjoy the free movies while you can, because the available catalog changes often.

To give you an idea of what you can stream right now, we compiled a list with some of the best reviewed movies currently on IMDb TV. Our list includes a selection of titles that are certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.

A few of the best movies on IMDb TV:

  • “American Hustle” (2013)
  • “Die Hard” (1988)
  • “How to Train Your Dragon” (2010)
  • “Long Shot” (2019)
  • “The Founder” (2017)
  • “The Hunger Games” (2012)
  • “The Walk” (2015)
  • “The Wolf of Wall Street” (2013)

What are the best shows on IMDb TV?

Schitt's Creek
“Schitt’s Creek”

From “Schitt’s Creek” to “Weeds,” you can watch a variety of series for free on IMDb TV, and the available shows frequently change.

To give you an idea of what you can stream right now, we rounded up some of the best reviewed shows currently on IMDb TV. All the series in our list have at least one season certified fresh by critics on review-aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes.

A few of the best shows on IMDb TV:

  • “Bates Motel”
  • “Desperate Housewives”
  • “Fringe”
  • “Lost”
  • “Mad Men”
  • “Schitt’s Creek”
  • “Weeds”
  • “White Collar”
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The millennial founder of a software company on track to net seven figures this year is fostering Africa’s rising tech stars

Oladosu Teyibo stands wearing a black shirt in the middle of the street smiling
Oladosu Teyibo

Name: Oladosu Teyibo

Age: 29

Location: Washington, D.C

Business: An outsourcing tech company focused on hiring underrepresented communities.

Backstory: Africa’s tech landscape is experiencing a boom but with investment into the continent, it’s just as imperative to invest in the African talent living there.

Founded by Oladosu Teyibo in 2018, Analog Team connects talent from underrepresented backgrounds with tech companies looking to build digital products. Aside from working in the US, Analog Team focuses on connecting African engineers with startups based in the states. His company is betting on the idea that others will begin sourcing talent from Africa, the way outsourcing is currently done to India, Teyibo said.

“There is not a pipeline issue or a knowledge gap,” he told Insider. “It’s just about providing opportunities and looking for the gems that are in the rough.”

Growth: Analog Team now operates in six African countries, including Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, and Nigeria. It has worked with top cell phone providers, social media, and gaming apps and is projected to net more than seven figures this year.

Next, it’s sourcing talent to build a new social media app, a database for user experience (UX) design, and new data transformation tools. Last month, with plans to further expand nationally, the company partnered with the city of Montgomery, Alabama to create an innovation lab that will help foster local tech talent.

“We’re also in conversation with HBCUs [Historically Black Colleges and Universities] and local universities to create robotics programs that focus on drone technology,” Teyibo said.

Oladosu Teyibo stands wearing a black shirt in the middle of the street smiling
Oladosu Teyibo

Before Analog Team: Teyibo studied information technology at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, and worked at the Cyber Innovation Center where he oversaw mergers and acquisitions. He left the company in 2016 to start Analog Team.

Challenges: Many tech companies have bad experiences working with outsourcing companies, so Analog Team built a business model to ensure it would be different from the rest. “We integrate and become part of the company,” Teyibo said. “We get so close you actually feel like we’re a part of your team.”

Advice: “The most important thing about building a business is to be the last one standing,” Teyibo said. “The right way to do that is to constantly innovate.”

Mentor: Teyibo counts his mother as a mentor who told him “when you leave somewhere, leave the place better than you met it.”

Why now is the best time to start a business: The world is on the “precipice of innovation and change,” and positioning oneself as a business leader early can pay off in the long run, Teyibo said. “In the next 10 or 20 years you can actually have a say in where we go as a global community,” he added.

Six Black people stand wearing black and white clothing looking at the camera smiling
Analog Team’s Nigerian-based tech team

On hiring: Right now, Analog Team consists of 30 people and aims to hire 1,000 people across software development, recruiting, and customer service by 2025. Interest in the company has increased as word of it continues to spread. “It’s now just about finding enough opportunities to hire everyone that we see across the world,” Teyibo said.

Managing burnout: Teyibo prays to help recenter his focus, and encourages his employees to take breaks when needed so when it’s time to deliver, everyone is at their best.

“It’s absolutely necessary to take breaks when you need them,” he continued. “But it’s important to remember a break isn’t a vacation – every moment you’re not focused on your goals, the competition is outworking you.”

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2 companies that delivered packages for Amazon threatened legal action over drivers’ working conditions, and then Amazon cut them off, they say

Parcels are stored in a truck in a logistics centre of the mail order company Amazon.
Parcels are stored in a truck in a logistics centre of the mail order company Amazon.

  • CNN spoke to two business owners who used to run companies delivering packages for Amazon.
  • Drivers’ wellbeing plummeted in 2020 due to the number of packages Amazon expected them to deliver, the pair said.
  • They sent a letter to Amazon threatening litigation and demanding better working conditions, they said.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

The owners of two companies that delivered packages for Amazon said they threatened to sue the tech giant over drivers’ working conditions, per a CNN report.

Ryan Schmutzer and Tracy Bloemer, two business owners from Portland, Oregon, spoke to CNN about their experiences as Delivery Service Partners (DSPs) for Amazon. DSPs are part of Amazon’s massive delivery network, but their drivers aren’t directly employed by Amazon.

Schmutzer and Bloemer told CNN their drivers’ wellbeing deteriorated after the pandemic hit. This was partly due to the high number of packages Amazon expected drivers to deliver, as well as the tech giant telling drivers to cut the time it took them to collect packages and put them in their vans, the pair said.

Schmutzer told CNN some of his drivers quit mid-shift because the work was so intense.

Schmutzer and Bloemer also told CNN their profits shrank during the pandemic. DSPs are paid per route, and Bloemer told CNN that while her business had been allocated up to 70 daily routes in the past, Amazon cut it down to 40 routes per day in June 2020.

The two business owners asked a lawyer to draft a joint letter to send to Amazon in June of this year, warning they might litigate unless Amazon improved working conditions for drivers, they told CNN. The pair also asked for $36 million to make up for unspecified losses.

Specifically, they wanted a cap on their drivers’ delivery numbers, at a maximum of 150 stops and 250 packages per day. DSP drivers told Insider in August they were expected to deliver between 170 and 350 packages per shift. Amazon says it works with DSPs to set realistic expectations.

Amazon then terminated its business with Schmutzer and Bloemer, they said.

Amazon didn’t immediately comment on CNN’s report when contacted by Insider. A spokesperson told CNN that Amazon terminated contracts with Schmutzer and Bloemer after they threatened to end their business with it. This threat jeopardized drivers’ livelihoods, the spokesperson said.

“Our goal is to create great partnerships with our Delivery Service Partners and their drivers, and continue to use their feedback to make improvements. A number of impacted drivers have been hired by other DSPs in the area,” the spokesperson said.

On the number of routes, Amazon told CNN that demand varied year to year and by season, and that it worked with DSPs to manage this.

Amazon DSP drivers have previously spoken about how hard they have to work to hit their quotas. In April, Amazon acknowledged it was aware of drivers urinating in bottles in order to stay on schedule.

The drivers are closely monitored by Amazon’s algorithms, and in spring of this year the company installed AI-powered cameras inside delivery vans. Drivers told Motherboard last week that these cameras sometimes penalized them unfairly for things like adjusting the radio, checking their sidemirrors, or getting cut off by someone else on the road.

Amazon said it has seen a reduction in accidents and other safety violations since installing the Netradyne cameras in its delivery vehicles.

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How Zuckerberg, Bezos, Gates and others in the tech elite see themselves and the world

Mark Zuckerberg
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s wealth increased substantially in 2020.

  • From Elon Musk to Jeff Bezos, the tech elite is “a class for itself,” according to a PLoS ONE study.
  • One researcher said they deny their role in influencing democracy with their financial capital.
  • The researchers claimed the tech elite’s view of the world was shaped by a meritocratic ideology.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The tech elite is “a class for itself,” a study published in PLoS ONE journal found.

Researchers Hilke Brockmann, Wiebke Drews, and John Torpey concluded that the tech elite had “a distinct social identity” that made them easily identifiable in “the large pool of Twitter users.”

Looking at the Forbes list of the 100 richest people in tech, the researchers analyzed their use of language and emotions, using machine-learning approaches.

At the top of the list was Amazon’s Jeff Bezos. His net worth skyrocketed in 2020 with an increase of $72.7 billion.

Following closely behind was Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg – although the latter’s wealth also increased substantially later in the year, taking him to over $100 billion.

Gaps between the tech elite and the rest of the population

The study examined how the language used by the tech elite differed from the rest of the “American Twitter-using population.”

They found that “disruption is consistently at the core of the communications of the tech elite,” who favor words including “can,” “great,” “people,” and “new.”

Words used by tech elite
The study examined how the tech elite’s language differed from the general population.

Their language was also much more achievement-oriented, using words that fell into an “achievement” category a total of 19,431 times.

This figure was twice as much as the general population’s, which came in at 9,439 times.

They also tended to draw more links between merit and employment compared with the general population.

The team hypothesized that the tech elite “saw its endeavors in ‘entrepreneurial technoscience’ as driven by a desire to ‘make the world a better place.'” They found that the language they used also reflected this goal.

Many of the tech elite have also signed the Giving Pledge, a scheme created by Bill Gates and his wife Melinda.

The scheme was set up to encourage billionaires to give away most of their wealth.

A 2020 report by the Institute for Policy Studies found that very little money may be helping people, as many of the billionaires were earning faster than they were giving.

Giving Pledge mission statements tech elite
Many of the tech elite have also signed the Giving Pledge.

The study also analyzed their subjects’ relationship with democracy and how it related to their wealth. “As representatives of an economic elite, they do not see or do not want to communicate a connection between these components of social potency,” the researchers said.

This constituted an active denial of the relationship between wealth and democracy, a view not shared by the general population.

“The tech elite does not take a critical view of the role they play relative to their abundance of power,” said Brockmann in a press release. “They deny their role in setting technical standards and influencing democracy with their financial capital.”

The researchers claimed that the tech elite’s view of the world was shaped by a meritocratic ideology. They believe their wealth is earned through effort, and so they don’t question their financial position.

Highlighting the elite’s “disproportionate influence” over how consumers spent their money, the team outlined the need for future policy research investigating how to “shape social outcomes” in a manner fitting of a democracy.

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Humans won’t be able to control a superintelligent AI, according to a study

Egypt coronavirus test robot
Machines already perform certain tasks without humans understanding how they learned it.

  • A Max-Planck Institute study suggests humans couldn’t prevent an AI from making its own choices.
  • The researchers used Alan Turing’s “halting problem” to test their theory.
  • Programming a superintelligent AI with “containment algorithms” or rules would be futile.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

It may not be theoretically possible to predict the actions of artificial intelligence, according to researchers from the Max-Planck Institute for Humans and Machines.

“A super-intelligent machine that controls the world sounds like science fiction,” said Manuel Cebrian, co-author of the study and leader of the research group. “But there are already machines that perform certain important tasks independently without programmers fully understanding how they learned it [sic].”

Our society is moving increasingly towards a reliance on artificial intelligence – from AI-run interactive job interviews to creating music and even memes, AI is already very much part of everyday life.

According to the research group’s study, published in the Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research, to predict an AI’s actions, a simulation of that exact superintelligence would need to be made.

The question of whether a superintelligence could be contained is hardly a new one.

Manuel Alfonseca, co-author of the study and leader of the research group at the Max-Planck Institute’s Center for Humans and Machines said that it all centers around “containment algorithms” not dissimilar to Asimov’s First Law of Robotics, according to IEEE.

In 1942, prolific science fiction writer Isaac Asimov laid out The Three Laws of Robotics in his short story “Runaround” as part of the “I, Robot” series.

According to Asimov, a robot could not harm a human or allow them to come to harm, it had to obey orders unless such orders conflicted with the first law, and they had to protect themselves, provided this didn’t conflict with the first or the second law.

The scientists explored two different ways to control artificial intelligence, the first being to limit an AI’s access to the internet.

The team also explored Alan Turing’s “halting problem,” concluding that a “containment algorithm” to simulate the behavior of AI – where the algorithm would “halt” the AI if it went to harm humans – would simply be unfeasible.

Alan Turing’s halting problem

Alan Turing’s halting problem explores whether a program can be stopped with containment algorithms or will continue running indefinitely.

A machine is asked various questions to see whether it reaches conclusions, or becomes trapped in a vicious cycle.

This test can also be applied to less complex machines – but with artificial intelligence, this is complicated by their ability to retain all computer programs in their memory.

“A superintelligence poses a fundamentally different problem than those typically studied under the banner of ‘robot ethics’,” said the researchers.

If artificial intelligence were educated using robotic laws, it might be able to reach independent conclusions, but that doesn’t mean it can be controlled.

“The ability of modern computers to adapt using sophisticated machine learning algorithms makes it even more difficult to make assumptions about the eventual behavior of a superintelligent AI,” said Iyad Rahwan, another researcher on the team.

Rahwan warned that artificial intelligence shouldn’t be created if it isn’t necessary, as it’s difficult to map the course of its potential evolution and we won’t be able to limit its capacities further down the line.

We may not even know when superintelligent machines have arrived, as trying to establish whether a device is superintelligent compared with humans is not dissimilar to the problems presented by containment.

At the rate of current AI development, this advice may simply be wishful thinking, as companies from Baker McKenzie to tech giants like Google, Amazon, and Apple are still in the process of integrating AI into their businesses – so it may be a matter of time before we have a superintelligence on our hands.

Unfortunately, it appears robotic laws would be powerless to prevent a potential “machine uprising” and that AI development is a field that should be explored with caution.

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