[Mar 4, 2017] Today’s Tech News in 3 Min

Lithium-ion creator helped develop a better battery technology.

John B. Goodenough have created a low-cost solid state battery that’s safer than lithium-ion with Cockrell School senior research team. It stores thrice as much energy, and the charging takes minutes instead of hours. It can also withstand a greater number of charge and discharge cycles. The technology uses glass electrolytes instead of liquid like lithium-ion does. /Engadget

Facebook tests reactions and Dislike button on messages.

When you hover over messages friends have sent in a chat thread, you can tap the emoji button to pick from attaching a little thumbs-up Like, thumbs-down Dislike, or a heart-eyes, lol, wow, sad, or angry emoji. Not everyone has access now, but if people enjoy it, Messenger Reactions could roll out to all users. /TechCrunch

US hopes cyberattacks will stall North Korea’s missile program.

President Obama ordered escalated cyberwarfare against North Korea in 2014 in a bid to thwart its plans for intercontinental ballistic missiles. However, it’s not clear that this strategy has worked — and there may be problems if it does. President Trump hasn’t signaled if or how his administration might change this approach. Everything is still on the table, according to the NY Times. /Engadget

Senate Democrats in Pennsylvania Are Being Held Cyber-Hostage.

The Democrats were working with law enforcement agencies and Microsoft to resolve the problem. It’s not revealed what payment has been demanded to unlock the data, or whether the attackers had suggested any political motive. In a ransomware attack, hackers inject a network with malware that typically encrypts important data, and then demand payment in exchange for a key that releases the data. They threaten to destroy the data if they aren’t paid. /NBC

Google reveals HP’s Chromebook for schools coming out in April.

It’s a 360-degree convertible that features USB-C charging and a rear/world-facing camera, just like the Chromebooks Asus and Acer debuted in January. The computer also works with an optional stylus. /Engadget

Amazon shuts down its cable store.

Around a year ago, Amazon launched a “cable store” website where it began reselling a variety of Comcast’s services, including its internet, TV and phone bundles, then later added Frontier. The site itself offered a way to view and compare the providers’ most popular plans, as well as product detail pages for each of their offerings with reviews. However, no other service providers were ever added to the cable store. /TechCrunch

Uber’s VP of product and growth Ed Baker has resigned.

His resignation also comes at a time when Uber employees have complained about questionable behavior on his part. This is the second major executive to step down from Uber in the last week, in moves indirectly related to the investigation. On Monday, Kalanick asked SVP of engineering Amit Singhal to resign after learning that he did not disclose that he was the subject of a sexual harassment investigation at his previous employer, Google. /Recode

(Peter) Thiel’s chief of staff tapped as White House deputy CTO.

Michael Kratsios, formerly chief of staff at Thiel Capital, will step into the role of deputy chief technology officer. Prior to his work at Thiel Capital, Kratsios was the chief financial officer of Clarium Capital Management, another fund company founded by Thiel. The deputy CTO role was last held by Alexander Macgillivray, a former general counsel at Twitter. /TechCrunch

Data shows U.S. consumers now spend 5 hours per day on mobile devices.

It seems to come at the expense of mobile browser usage, which has dropped significantly over the years. The shift into apps can be attributed to many other factors — increased selection in the app stores, better and more available Wi-Fi and mobile broadband and the rise in messaging apps. This follows on news from January that said the time spent in mobile apps had increased 69 percent year-over-year. /TechCrunch

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