National / International News
All this week, Marketplace Tech is taking a closer look at technology and the ways in which it influences how we read.
Already, Marketplace Tech host Ben Johnson has spoken with Marketplace's LearningCurve reporter Adriene Hill on how tablets are being used in schools as education tools, and author Jason Boog about his new book, "Born Reading: Bringing Up Bookworms in a Digital Age."
But how has technology changed the way adults read? Well, as you might expect, the answer is complicated.
Click the media player above to hear Marketplace Morning Report guest host David Gura in conversation with Marketplace Tech host Ben Johnson.
This week, the National Institutes of Health begins testing an Ebola vaccine in humans. Given the need to quickly stem the deadly outbreak in West Africa, global health officials hope to push a vaccine to market.
While there's currently a market for an Ebola vaccine, it’s small, and Ebola isn’t a disease that keeps popping up year-after-year.
“It’s not all about economics,” says Dr. Carlos Del Rio, chair of the Department of Global Health at Emory University. He says developing the vaccine is also about building good PR for a company. “There’s a value to that publicity, right?”
Right, says Kenneth Kaitin, director of the Center for Drug Development at Tufts University. But Kaitin says there is also the potential for a huge payoff, especially for smaller companies.
Think of it as a pharmaceutical version of “Cap and Trade.”
“A program that the FDA put in place several years ago gives a priority review voucher to any company developing a product for a neglected or tropical disease,” says Kaitin.
Ebola is a perfect example. That pharma company can sell the voucher to another drug maker. The “golden ticket” gets the purchaser a fast track to federal regulators for any other drug in its portfolio.
One voucher recently sold for more than $67 million.
The social media giant Facebook has well over 100 million users in India, a nation that could overtake the U.S. as the top Facebook market as early as next year.
To capitalize in emerging countries like India, Facebook is now providing advertisers with data on cell reception and connection. The information helps match ads to user technology. For example, Coca Cola could send a video ad to people in cities with 4G LTE, or turn it into a text ad for people in rural areas where connections are spotty and data networks are limited.
It’s a way to help advertisers better reach the population they’re addressing, says Anne Nelson, who specializes in international media development at Columbia University.
This is important because most users in places like India are on pay-as-you-go data plans, says Nathan Eagle, the CEO of Jana, a mobile marketing platform.
“Advertising for most people in these emerging markets ultimately is taking money out of their pockets,” he says.
With over a billion potential Facebook users in India, that's probably not the best way to make a first impression.
The FBI is looking into allegations that online accounts of several celebrities had been hacked. Apple says it is determining whether its online photo-sharing service had been hacked.
A day after an Islamic-extremist group launched an attack in Somalia, U.S. military forces have struck back. A Pentagon spokesman says the results of the operation are being assessed.