Tech Tent: Fun and Games in Finland


On this week's Tech Tent we travel to Slush, one of the most relaxed and vibrant technology events you will find anywhere in the world. It is held in almost total darkness in a huge exhibition hall in Finland's capital Helsinki and feels more like a music festival than a conference.

Image copyright EPA
Image caption The Slush conference brought together veteran entrepreneurs and startup founders

Nevertheless, with hundreds of startups mingling with established businesses, it is a great place to take the temperature of Europe's tech scene. From the founders of Spotify and Supercell, to the president of tiny but digitally pioneering Estonia, to some big names from Silicon Valley, there were all kinds of perspectives on the state of the tech business in uncertain times.

Zennstrom backs

We heard from one of the superstars of European tech over the last two decades, Skype co-founder Niklas Zennstrom. At a time when many across Europe are agonising over why the continent can't produce a Google or a Facebook, he was keen to accentuate the positive.

Atomico, the venture capital firm which Zennstrom founded, produced a report for Slush on the state of European tech which finds a much wider distribution of talent and entrepreneurship than you might think.

Not just in London, Berlin and Helsinki, but in places like Warsaw, Budapest and Madrid you'll now find plenty of developers getting together to plot a profitable future.

Read full article Tech Tent: Fun and Games in Finland

Nokia dials back time to sell mobile phones again

Nokia phones Image copyright Nokia
Image caption Nokia's site is showcasing the feature-phone models

Nokia-branded mobile phones are on sale, once again, and being marketed on the Finnish company's website.

For now, the range is limited to some pretty basic models, but that should change when Android-powered smartphones and tablets are added soon.

Read full article Nokia dials back time to sell mobile phones again

'Snoopers law creates security nightmare'

Data centre Image copyright Thinkstock
Image caption The UK's internet service providers will need to install new equipment to log their customers net habits

The Investigatory Powers Bill will get royal assent on Tuesday. More than 130,000 people have signed a petition calling for it to be scrapped.

Tim Berners-Lee has said it creates a "security nightmare".

Read full article 'Snoopers law creates security nightmare'

Facebook, fake news and the meaning of truth

A man poses with a magnifier in front of a Facebook logo Image copyright Reuters

What is the most important source of news and therefore the most powerful media organisation in the world today?

Well, there is a good argument that the answer is not a newspaper or broadcasting organisation but a social network, Facebook.

Read full article Facebook, fake news and the meaning of truth

Tech Tent: The promise and perils of data


Big data. It's one of the tech cliches of the age. The idea that the torrent of data now being created can be processed in all sorts of clever ways with life-changing implications.

On my Tech Tent podcast this week, we look at the promise and perils of data and ask whether we are ready to share more of it with companies that say they will use it for our benefit.

Google: Good for your health?

Read full article Tech Tent: The promise and perils of data

These phone apps have got your number

David Cameron takes a selfie Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The databases of numbers have been compiled from the address books of users

The mobile phone numbers of former Prime Minister David Cameron, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, celebrities and millions of other people are being stored in databases that can be searched by the public.

While the numbers cannot be obtained simply by entering a name, data watchdogs are concerned about the way the information has been gathered.

Read full article These phone apps have got your number

British insurers: 'Give us driverless car data'

Media captionThe confusion caused by driverless cars

Driverless car technology seems to be advancing at breakneck speed - but the changes this will mean for the rules of the road are proceeding at a slower pace.

Now the insurance industry is calling on carmakers to provide more data showing who was at fault in accidents involving driverless vehicles. The insurers say drivers need to be able to prove that they're not at fault if the technology goes wrong.

Read full article British insurers: 'Give us driverless car data'

Tech Tent: Truth and hate in an online world

Rory Cellan-Jones

All of a sudden, some of the great names of the digital age are facing a crisis. Google, Facebook and Twitter have always seen themselves as more than mere businesses - they believe they are on a mission to make our lives better.

Now, in the bitter aftermath of America's presidential election, they stand accused of becoming vehicles of lies and hatred rather than civilised debate.

Read full article Tech Tent: Truth and hate in an online world

Podcast: Did Donald's data trump Hillary?

Rory's podcast: Did Donald's data trump Hillary?


Donald Trump may not have had as impressive an operation on the ground as Hillary Clinton - but since June a very sophisticated data analysis operation had been underway.

Read full article Podcast: Did Donald's data trump Hillary?

Robot recycling - extracting value from old TVs

Media captionHow robots are used to extract valuable materials from your old TV

Ever wondered what happens to your old television? As TV technology advances, we are upgrading more often and in the UK two million sets are thrown away each year.

Discarded electrical goods are the fastest growing form of waste, with TVs making up the biggest element - and that's a huge headache for the councils that have to deal with it.

Read full article Robot recycling - extracting value from old TVs