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BUSINESS
March 16, 2014 | By Hannah Kuchler
Like bacteria, big data are lurking in the stomachs of cows. Some farmers are using sensors and software to analyze it and predict when a cow is getting ill. Just like customers, cows do not always speak out when something is wrong. But companies can use data to predict potential risks and opportunities in cows and customers alike. The message of a new book, "Big Data @Work," by Thomas H. Davenport, a fellow of the MIT Center for Digital Business, is that companies are only beginning to understand the questions they can ask of their vast stores of data - and how to build the internal structures to make the most of it. "Big data" is a fashionable, sometimes overused term for the vast amounts of information that can now be stored because of the growth of online activity and the low cost of storage.
ARTICLES BY DATE
OPINION
April 13, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
The discovery of the Heartbleed bug, an online security flaw that's alarmingly widespread, was just the latest reminder of how vulnerable Internet users are to the mistakes made by others. In this case, a programming error in a supposedly secure Internet communications protocol allowed hackers to steal passwords, credit card details and other sensitive information from websites for up to two years before the problem was found. A new version that removed the bug quickly became available, but even if Internet users change their passwords and credit card numbers, their personal information will still be up for grabs until the websites they used for banking, shopping and services install the update.
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BUSINESS
September 1, 2011
Top wireless phone providers and number of employees. AT&T: 258,870 Verizon Wireless: 83,000 T-Mobile: 42,000 Sprint Nextel: 40,000 MetroPCS: 3,600 Leap: 4,360 U.S. Cellular: 9,000 Source: Companies
BUSINESS
April 9, 2014 | By Chris O'Brien
The "Heartbleed" software flaw that triggered alarm bells around the world could fundamentally undermine two decades' worth of efforts to persuade consumers they could trust the Web to securely handle such tasks as buying a pair of shoes and applying for a job. The discovery of a gaping hole in a piece of software that was supposed to protect personal information from hackers left websites rushing to fix the bug while consumers struggled to understand...
BUSINESS
April 7, 2014 | By Ricardo Lopez
Irish pharmaceutical giant Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals said it will pay $5.6 billion in cash and stock for a fast-growing Anaheim bio-pharmaceutical firm that specializes in treating multiple sclerosis, the companies announced Monday. The deal for Questcor Pharmaceuticals Inc. would give Mallinckrodt drugs that primarily treat chronic autoimmune and inflammatory disorders. Questcor's Acthar Gel, used in the treatment of multiple sclerosis, accounts for most of the company's sales.
BUSINESS
June 7, 1991 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Intel Corp. said it will close its Singapore plant to move manufacturing closer to its customers. About 300 workers will lose their jobs, the Santa Clara, Calif., computer chip maker said. Intel said it hopes to cut costs by moving the manufacturing of circuit boards and systems built at the plant to Oregon and Ireland, where the products will be closer to the companies that purchase them. Intel has 24,000 employees worldwide.
BUSINESS
August 13, 2012 | By Michael E. Kanell
ATLANTA — Many American companies that had adopted a much-vaunted employee evaluation system have lately been turning away from it. Known as "stacked ranking" or "forced ranking," the process made famous by General Electric Co. is really just a version of what teachers call grading on the curve: a few people at the top, a few at the bottom and the rest clumped in the middle. The practice leaped into the spotlight — at least for people who study how companies perform — when Vanity Fair published in its August issue a profile of technology icon Microsoft Corp.
BUSINESS
September 1, 2011
WASHINGTON Nine companies are recalling about 2 million bottles and jugs of the gel fuel used in outdoor patio decorations known as firepots because of the risk of serious burns. The Consumer Product Safety Commission says the gel fuel has been linked to several dozen cases in which people were burned when they couldn't tell whether the flame was out. Pouring more gel on a burning pot can lead to dangerous flares or burns. The companies are: Bird Brain Inc. of Ypsilanti, Mich.; Bond Manufacturing of Antioch, Calif.; Sunjel Company of Milwaukee; Fuel Barons Inc. of Lake Tahoe, Nev.; Lamplight Farms Inc. of Menomonee Falls, Wis.; Luminosities Inc. of St. Paul, Minn.; Pacific Decor Ltd. of Woodinville, Wash.; Real Flame of Racine, Wis.; Smart Solar USA of Oldsmar, Fla. The commission says Marshall Group of Elkhart, Ind., pulled out of the public announcement at the last minute.
BUSINESS
March 20, 2013 | Alana Semuels
NEW YORK -- The economy may be improving, but many U.S. companies are still hanging on to record amounts of cash, something they usually do in times of economic turmoil. U.S. companies held $1.45 trillion in cash in 2012, up 10% from the $1.32 trillion they held in 2011 -- which at that time was a record level, according to a new report from Moody's Investors Service. Apple is sitting on $137 billion in cash, a fact not lost on investors, who have sued in an effort to get Apple to give some of that cash to shareholders.
BUSINESS
July 2, 2013 | By Shan Li
The energy industry scored a big win Tuesday when a federal judge tossed out a Securities and Exchange Commission rule that  required oil and mining companies to disclose payments to foreign governments. Deeming the regulation arbitrary and capricious, U.S. District Judge John Bates in Washington noted that the SEC failed to include exemptions in cases in which foreign governments explicitly ban public disclosures, according to Fuel Fix, a website reporting the industry. The regulation was issued under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act in 2010, intended to bring financial reforms following the Great Recession.
BUSINESS
April 7, 2014 | By Ricardo Lopez
Irish pharmaceutical giant Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals said it will pay $5.6 billion in cash and stock for a fast-growing Anaheim bio-pharmaceutical firm that specializes in treating multiple sclerosis, the companies announced Monday. The deal for Questcor Pharmaceuticals Inc. would give Mallinckrodt drugs that primarily treat chronic autoimmune and inflammatory disorders. Questcor's Acthar Gel, used in the treatment of multiple sclerosis, accounts for most of the company's sales.
BUSINESS
April 6, 2014 | By Marc Lifsher
SACRAMENTO - The recent hacking of customer data from Target Corp. computers is roiling the California Legislature. Last week, two members of the Assembly touted a bill to strengthen consumer safeguards and limit the type of information collected and retained by retailers. The measure, AB 1710, may trigger one of the year's biggest disputes over business-related legislation. "It'll be a big fight, a tough fight," said Bill Dombrowski, president of the California Retailers Assn.
BUSINESS
April 6, 2014 | By Walter Hamilton
The stock market is hitting new highs - just as corporate profit growth is slowing to a crawl. Rising earnings helped drive share prices to a series of record peaks in the last few years. But that dynamic could be tested this week when companies such as Alcoa Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. begin releasing first-quarter results. Quarterly profits are expected to drop for just the second time in four years. The decline would be relatively small: 1.2% for companies in the Standard & Poor's 500 index, according to FactSet Research Systems.
BUSINESS
April 3, 2014 | By Hugo Martín
Amid ongoing controversy over its killer whale shows, SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. reported a 13% drop in attendance for the first three months of the year. The attendance numbers were included in a notice to the Securities and Exchange Commission that SeaWorld was buying 1.75 million of its own shares from private equity firm Blackstone Group. The notice said attendance for the quarter that ended March 31 dropped to about 3.05 million visitors from 3.5 million in the same period in 2013.
BUSINESS
March 30, 2014 | By Chris O'Brien and Jessica Guynn
SAN FRANCISCO - It's becoming a familiar scene in everybody's favorite city - luxury shuttles with Wi-Fi and plush seats barreling past sluggish, dilapidated city buses crammed with local residents standing elbow to elbow. The nerd convoy, ferrying workers to technology companies in Silicon Valley, has raised the ire of civic activists who see it as a symbol of a divide between the haves and have nots as the region's tech boom has sent housing costs and evictions soaring. But as heated as that backlash has become at times, it has obscured a much broader story that these buses have to tell about changes sweeping across not just San Francisco but also the entire Bay Area.
BUSINESS
March 30, 2014 | By Donie Vanitzian
Question: I'm the president of our homeowner association mainly because no one else wants the job. We live in a prestigious area of Los Angeles and have fewer than 30 units. Because nobody wants to be on our board we hired a management company. They're not a California company. Their head office is out of state, and we've never seen or been to their California place of business and do not know where it is or that they even have a California office. A management representative came and picked up our files and documents, including owners' personal information and accounts, and gave us their P.O. box number.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 27, 2014 | By Hector Becerra
Utility giant Pacific Gas & Electric Co. said Thursday it expects federal officials to bring criminal charges against the company in connection with a 2010 gas pipeline blast that devastated a San Bruno neighborhood and killed eight people. PG&E said it was negotiating with the U.S. attorney's office for some type of resolution but provided few details. A spokesperson for the office in San Francisco declined to comment on the investigation or say what if any charges were being considered.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 23, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
NEW YORK - Two New York entertainment-world fixtures are teaming, as Madison Square Garden has announced that it has taken a 50% stake in Tribeca Enterprises, the company that runs the Tribeca Film Festival. The move gives Tribeca a financial foundation as well as presumed access to a number of high-profile venues. For MSG, the deal offers a toehold in the film-festival world as it looks to expand its live-event business beyond sports and music. Specific financial terms were not disclosed, though Tribeca said the deal "values Tribeca Enterprises at $45 million.
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