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This Week In Technology: Google Plus, NASA, and More

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Google Fast-tracks Google Plus Closure

Google found yet another bug in the Google Plus social network. The bug allows third party developers access to 52.5 million users’ personal information. This information includes names, ages, emails, and occupations. Because of this, Google announced closure of the site in April 2019 instead of August.

Google originally announced the closure of the service after the information of 500,000 users was compromised due to a similar bug. People poorly received the admission, as Google also announced that they detected the leak back in March. In addition to the closure in April, Google also announced the plans to end the Google Plus API shutdown.

Voyager 2 Enters Interstellar Space

NASA spacecraft entered the history books this morning as it became the 2nd man-made object to leave the heliosphere. After the probe launched in 1977, it was only supposed to last 5 years and study Jupiter and Saturn. Now, it is currently 11 billion miles away from Earth. The only other probe to do this is Voyager 1.

Voyager 2 also contains many mementos from Earth, including a Golden Record. This record is a collection of images and sounds from Earth. As NASA’s longest running space mission, they expect to collect data until 2025.

Britain’s O2 Compensates Customers

After a software glitch caused the loss of internet to their customers, phone provider O2 announced compensation to those affected. By January, it planned to compensate two days of monthly airtime subscription charges to monthly customers. It also plans to give out a 10% discount.

The company, owned by Spain’s Telefonica, announced that their software caused the glitch, which also hit multiple markets and knocked out London’s live bus information displays.

Volkswagen Announces New Electric Car Numbers

On Friday, car manufacturer Volkswagen announced that they plan to build up to 15 million electric cars. The company is reportedly investing around $12.5Bn into cars by 2023, with 80% of that in electric cars specifically. They plan to produce 27 electric models by 2022.

In addition, Volkswagen is also building an alliance with Ford. They plan to use the company’s US plants to manufacture cars State-side.

Facebook Vs Ad-Blockers

The way Facebook tackled ad-blockers drew criticisms from many web developers. They inject many lines of code into every page in order to make it harder for ad-blockers to detect whether or not ads are being shown. However, this makes the page load slower and stutter more as well as makes it harder for the visually impaired by slowing down screen readers.

Facebook hasn’t made a comment on the situation, but many developers have talked about the issue. They say that Facebook is determined to keep sponsored posts on the site, and that “Facebook will [not] stop trying to push their ads, so this issue will never be ‘fixed’.”