Yahoo to implement ad-tracker opt out
Facing privacy pressure from Congress, Yahoo Inc. said Friday that it will institute a system to let consumers opt out of ads on its site that target their Web browsing behavior.
Behavioral targeting is a technology that seeks to deduce consumers' interests by tracking what sorts of Web sites they visit.
The change, which will take effect in a few weeks, was announced in response to a hearing held last month by the Internet subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which has looked into behavioral targeting and other online advertising practices.
Previously, Yahoo had offered the opt-out choice on ads that it runs on other sites. With Friday's announcement, the company pledged to extend that option to ads displayed on its own pages. "Yahoo understands that the trust of our users is our greatest asset," Anne Toth, the company's vice president for policy, said in a statement.
Yahoo said consumers will be able to access the opt-out feature by visiting its privacy center, which is linked on the home page and nearly every page on its network. Those who do opt out of targeted ads will instead see generic ads.
The Associated Press reported that the policy change does not affect Yahoo's other targeted ads, such as those tied to search terms or location, nor stop the collection of the data that had been used to target ads. Yahoo said it still needs such information for such uses as fraud detection.
Time Warner Inc.'s AOL and Microsoft Corp. also allow users to opt out of targeted ads on their sites, while Google Inc. generally does not use the sort of targeting that had aroused congressional interest.
For more details about the initiative, or to read Yahoo's response to Congress, go to links.sfgate.com/ZEMA.
Plane folds its wings and drives off
The not-yet-air-tested Terrafugia Transition is designed to fold its wings and be driven down the highway in bad weather.
Sausalito native Carl Dietrich visited Google headquarters Friday to show off the prototype for a light sport aircraft that can fold its wings after landing and then drive off, like a car, at highway speeds.
Dietrich, 31, an MIT-trained aerospace engineer, has named this road-ready plane the Terrafugia Transition. In a telephone interview, he said he expects to sell it for about $195,000, assuming it passes its flying tests. He said the prototype displayed at Google has an engine and should be flight-worthy, but won't take to the air until the end of the year.
Assuming the Transition flies true, it would join a new category of two-seat, light sport aircraft that can be piloted by anyone with a valid state driver license and 20 hours of flight training.
Like the ICON A5 aircraft, designed by two Stanford business school graduates, the Transition can fold up, be loaded onto a trailer and towed like a boat.
But Dietrich said the Transition does the ICON A5 one better, because once it folds its wings it will also be capable of being driven down the road at highway speeds.
Why make the plane drivable? Dietrich said two of the leading causes of small plane accidents are running out of gas, often due to flying around bad weather, or crashes caused by bad weather. He said pilots who encounter bad weather will be able to land the Transition at any one of approximately 5,000 small airfields scattered across the United States and continue the trip, more safely, on the ground.
From : http://www.sfgate.com