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Source for technology related news with a heavy slant towards Linux and Open Source issues.

Canadian Genetic Non-Discrimination Act Upheld  

Long-time Slashdot reader kartis writes: Canada's Supreme Court upheld the Genetic Non-Discrimination Act (GINA) which prohibits under criminal penalty, employers or insurers from demanding or using genetic information. This was a result of a private member's bill in Parliament, which meant it passed without the government's support, and in fact both the Federal government and Quebec government (which had gotten it declared unconstitutional as outside federal powers) argued that it extended crim

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2020-07-11 02:30:00

Tyson Bets On Robots To Tackle Meat Industry's Worker Shortage  

At Tyson's 26,000-square-foot, multi-million dollar Manufacturing Automation Center near its headquarters in Springdale, Arkansas, the company will apply the latest advances in machine learning to meat manufacturing, with the goal of eventually eliminating jobs that can be physically demanding, highly repetitive and at times dangerous. Bloomberg reports: Advances in technology are making it possible to make strides in automation. For example, machine vision is now accurate and speedy enough to a

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2020-07-11 01:50:00

Apple Supplier Foxconn To Invest $1 Billion In India  

Foxconn plans to invest up to $1 billion to expand a factory in southern India where the Taiwanese contract manufacturer assembles Apple iPhones. Fox Business reports: The move, the scale of which has not previously been reported, is part of a quiet and gradual production shift by Apple away from China as it navigates disruptions from a trade war between Beijing and Washington and the coronavirus crisis. "There's a strong request from Apple to its clients to move part of the iPhone production ou

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2020-07-11 01:30:00

The Uncertain Future of Ham Radio  

Julianne Pepitone from IEEE Spectrum writes about the uncertain future of ham radio. An anonymous reader shares an excerpt: Will the amateur airwaves fall silent? Since the dawn of radio, amateur operators -- hams -- have transmitted on tenaciously guarded slices of spectrum. Electronic engineering has benefited tremendously from their activity, from the level of the individual engineer to the entire field. But the rise of the Internet in the 1990s, with its ability to easily connect billions of

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2020-07-11 01:10:00

Charter's Hidden 'Broadcast TV' Fee Now Adds $197 a Year To Cable Bills  

Charter is raising the "Broadcast TV" fee it imposes on cable plans from $13.50 to $16.45 a month starting in August. "Charter has raised the fee repeatedly -- it stood at $9.95 in early 2019 before a series of price increases," reports Ars Technica. "It $16.45 a month, the fee will cost customers an additional $197.40 per year." From the report: Charter says the Broadcast TV fee covers the amount it pays broadcast television stations (e.g. affiliates of CBS, NBC, ABC, and Fox) for the right to

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2020-07-11 00:25:00

Android 10 Had the Fastest Adoption Rate of Any Version of Android Yet  

Google announced that Android is seeing the fastest adoption rates of any version of Android. The Verge reports: According to Google, Android 10 was installed on 100 million devices five months after its launch in September 2019 â" 28 percent faster than it took the company to reach a similar milestone for Android Pie. Google credits the faster adoption rate to improvements the company has been making over the years, like Android Oreo's Project Treble and Android 10's Project Mainline, whic

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2020-07-10 23:55:00

Facebook Considers Political-Ad Blackout Ahead of US Election  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Bloomberg: Facebook is considering imposing a ban on political ads on its social network in the days leading up to the U.S. election in November, according to people familiar with the company's thinking. The potential ban is still only being discussed and hasn't yet been finalized, said the people, who asked not to be named talking about internal policies. A halt on ads could serve as a defense against misleading election-related content spreading widely

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2020-07-10 23:25:00

Google Bans Stalkerware Ads  

Google announced plans this week to ban ads that promote stalkerware, spyware, and other forms of surveillance technology that can be used to track other persons without their specific consent. From a report: The change was announced this week as part of an upcoming update to Google Ads policies, set to enter into effect next month, on August 11, 2020. Examples of products and services that advertisers won't be able to promote via Google Ads anymore include: 1. Spyware and technology used fo

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2020-07-10 22:45:00

Amazon Delays Next Video Game Half a Year After Latest One Flops  

Following scathing reviews of a computer game it released in May, is delaying its next big-budget game by at least six months. From a report: The decision represents another setback for the technology giant's ambitions to break into the gaming industry. The next game, New World, was supposed to debut in late August but is now scheduled for spring 2021, Rich Lawrence, director of Amazon's game studio, wrote in a blog post Friday. The company wants extra time to implement changes sugges

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2020-07-10 22:04:00

Signal's New PIN Feature Worries Cybersecurity Experts  

Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai, writing for Vice: Ever since NSA leaker Edward Snowden said "use Signal, use Tor," the end-to-end encrypted chat app has been a favorite of people who care about privacy and need a chat and calling app that is hard to spy on. One of the reasons security experts recommended Signal is because the app's developers collected -- and thus retained -- almost no information about its users. This means that, if subpoenaed by law enforcement, Signal would have essentially no

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2020-07-10 21:24:00

Apple Advises Against MacBook Camera Covers Due To Display Cracking  

Apple, in a new support document, is warning users against closing their MacBook lids with a cover over the camera. From a report: Placing a cover, sticker or tape over a laptop camera is a practice adopted by some privacy- and security-conscious individuals to protect against webcam hijacking. Now, however, Apple is explicitly advising against the tactic. In a support document published earlier in July, Apple urges users not to close their MacBook Pro or MacBook Air lids if there's a camera cov

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2020-07-10 20:45:00

France To Introduce Controversial Age Verification System For Adult Websites  

The French Parliament unanimously agreed this week to introduce a nationwide age verification system for pornography websites, months after President Emmanuel Macron pledged to protect children against such content. From a report: Macron made the protection of children against adult content online a high-profile issue well before the coronavirus crisis hit. In January, tech companies, internet services providers and the adult movies industry signed a voluntary charter, pledging to roll out tools

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2020-07-10 20:05:00

US Finalizing Federal Contract Ban For Companies That Use Huawei, Others  

The Trump administration plans to finalize regulations this week that will bar the U.S. government from buying goods or services from any company that uses products from five Chinese companies including Huawei, Hikvision and Dahua, Reuters reported Friday, citing a U.S. official said. From the report: The rule, which was prompted by a 2019 law, could have far-ranging implications for companies that sell goods and services to the U.S. government since they will now need to certify they do not use

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2020-07-10 19:25:00

Nearly 70,000 Tech Startup Employees Have Lost Their Jobs Since March  

Technology startups have been laying off tens of thousands of workers to cope with the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, potentially blunting a key innovation pipeline for the enterprise information-technology market, according to industry analysts. From a report: "Startups are a great source of innovation in the IT industry, but are now especially cash constrained," said Max Azaham, a senior research director at research and consulting firm Gartner. Mr. Azaham said the coronavirus h

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2020-07-10 18:45:00

Scientists Make Precise Gene Edits To Mitochondrial DNA For First Time  

A peculiar bacterial enzyme has allowed researchers to achieve what even the popular CRISPR-Cas9 genome-editing system couldn't manage: targeted changes to the genomes of mitochondria, cells' crucial energy-producing structures. From a report: The technique -- which builds on a super-precise version of gene editing called base editing -- could allow researchers to develop new ways to study, and perhaps even treat, diseases caused by mutations in the mitochondrial genome. Such disorders are most

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2020-07-10 18:04:00

Amazon Makes Employees Delete TikTok From Phones, Citing Security Risk  

Amazon has asked its employees to delete the Chinese-owned video app TikTok from their cellphones, citing "security risks," according to a company email sent on Friday. From a report: In the email, which was obtained by The New York Times, Amazon officials said that employees must delete the app from any devices that "access Amazon email." Employees had to remove the app by Friday to remain able to obtain mobile access to their Amazon email, the note said. Amazon workers are still allowed to vie

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2020-07-10 17:22:00

A Moment of Clarity Regarding the Raison d'Etre for the App Store  

John Gruber, writing at DaringFireball: Feel free to file Google's release this week of an update to their iPad Gmail app with support for split-screen multitasking under "better late than never," but this is so late it borders on the absurd. It's like the difference between showing up fashionably late and showing up a week after the party. Split-screen multitasking was introduced for the iPad back in 2015 with iOS 9. Five years to add support for a foundational element of the iPad user experien

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2020-07-10 16:44:00

Apple Reaches New Stage in Development of AR Devices  

The coronavirus pandemic has disrupted key parts of Apple's business, but it hasn't derailed the company's plans to build what could be its next important technology platform -- augmented reality devices. From a report: The Information has learned that Apple is working with Taiwan's Foxconn Technology, Apple's largest contract manufacturer and the one responsible for building most iPhones, to develop semitransparent lenses for its AR devices. As of two months ago, the lenses -- considered one of

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2020-07-10 16:04:00

Should We Be Drinking Less?  

Can a daily drink or two lead to better health? For many years, the federal government's influential dietary guidelines implied as much, saying there was evidence that moderate drinking could lower the risk of heart disease and reduce mortality. But now a committee of scientists that is helping to update the latest edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans is taking a harder stance on alcohol. From a report: The committee said in a recent conference call that it plans to recommend that men

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2020-07-10 15:21:00

Asia IT Giant's CEO Warns Trump's Visa Curbs Will Cost US  

The chief executive officer of Asia's largest IT services firm warned that a U.S. freeze on thousands of employment visas will only raise costs for American corporations like Wall Street banks, auto manufacturers and drugmakers. From a report: Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) CEO Rajesh Gopinathan told Bloomberg News the move has put massive stress on a huge swath of Indian-born engineers that have lived in the U.S. for years and helped support American clients, who will ultimately be the ones hu

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2020-07-10 14:45:00

Chicago Police Department Arrest API Shutdown is Its Own Kind of 'Cover Up'  

Asraa Mustufa and David Eads, reporting for Chicago Reporter: With Chicago reeling this week from a bloody July 4 weekend that saw more than 80 shootings claim the lives of at least 17 people, including young children, police Superintendent David Brown doubled down on his approach to stemming the violence at a press conference Monday. "We must keep violent offenders in jail longer," Brown said, arguing that arrestees are getting released too quickly and that the electronic monitoring program is

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2020-07-10 14:08:00

Worldwide PC Shipments Grew Due To Work-From-Home Arrangements  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Engadget: The PC industry bounced back in the second quarter of 2020 after its weakest quarter in years mostly due to shelter-in-place orders prompted by the coronavirus pandemic. According to both Gartner and IDC, PC shipments grew year-over-year in the second quarter -- the former says shipments totaled 64.8 million units (a 2.8 percent increase from Q2 2019), while IDC says global shipments reached 72.3 million units, which is 11.2 percent higher compa

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2020-07-10 13:00:00

Giant Clams Manipulate Light To Assist Their Symbiotic Partner  

Special cells in giant clams shift the wavelength of light to protect them from UV radiation and increase the photosynthetic activity of their symbionts, shows research from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology -- originally intended as a photonics investigation. Phys.Org reports: Like corals, giant clams are important players in reef ecosystems and live in symbiosis with photosynthetic Symbiodiniaceae algae. The clams also have special cells, known as iridocytes, that can manipula

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2020-07-10 10:00:00

Jack Dorsey Donates $3 Million To US Mayors For Universal Basic Income Pilot Programs In 15 Cities  

Jack Dorsey, the billionaire CEO of Twitter and Square, is donating $3 million to help fund Mayors for a Guaranteed Income (MGI), a new coalition of 15 mayors across the country who want to explore the idea of universal basic income -- a recurring payment to residents -- in their cities. Forbes reports: The coalition was created on June 29 by Michael Tubbs, the 29 year-old mayor of Stockton, California, who has been running a guaranteed income pilot program in his city since the winter of 2018.

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2020-07-10 07:00:00

Power Pioneer Invents New Battery That's 90% Cheaper Than Lithium-Ion  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Bloomberg: Lithium-ion batteries play a central role in the world of technology, powering everything from smartphones to smart cars, and one of the people who helped commercialize them says he has a way to cut mass production costs by 90% and significantly improve their safety. Hideaki Horie, formerly of Nissan Motor Co., founded Tokyo-based APB Corp. in 2018 to make "all-polymer batteries" -- hence the company name. The making of a cell, every battery's

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2020-07-10 03:30:00

Amazon Will Pay $135,000 To Settle Alleged US Sanction Violations  

In a statement (PDF) issued this week, the U.S. Treasury Department notes that Amazon has agreed to pay $134,523 to settle potential liability over alleged sanctions violations. TechCrunch reports: The charges specifically pertain to goods and services sent to people located in Crimea, Iran and Syria, which are covered by Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctions, between November 2011 and October 2018. The Treasury Department also states that the retail giant failed to report "several h

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2020-07-10 02:30:00

More Pre-Installed Malware Has Been Found In Budget US Smartphones  

Pre-installed malware has been discovered on another budget handset connected to Assurance Wireless by Virgin Mobile. ZDNet reports: Back in January, cybersecurity researchers from Malwarebytes discovered unremovable malware bundled with the Android operating systems on the Unimax (UMX) U686CL, a low-end handset sold by Assurance Wireless as part of the Lifeline Assistance program, a 1985 U.S. initiative which subsidizes telephone services for low-income families. There was no way to remove a pa

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2020-07-10 01:50:00

TikTok Mulls Changes to Business to Distance Itself From China  

Bytedance said it's evaluating changes to the corporate structure of its TikTok business as U.S. concerns grow over the parent company's Chinese origins. Bloomberg reports: Executives are discussing options such as creating a new management board for TikTok and establishing a separate headquarters for the app outside of China to distance its operations from Beijing, according to a person familiar with the discussions. Short-video and music app TikTok currently doesn't have its own headquarters s

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2020-07-10 01:10:00

xMEMS Announces World's First Monolithic MEMS Speaker  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from AnandTech: In the last few years, semiconductor manufacturing has become more prevalent and accessible, with MEMS (Microelectromechanical systems) technology now having advanced to a point that we can design speakers with characteristics that are fundamentally different from traditional dynamic drivers or balanced armature units. xMEMS' "Montara" design promises to be precisely such an alternative. xMEMS is a new start-up, founded in 2017 with headquarter

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2020-07-10 00:30:00

Indian Army Personnel Banned From Using 89 Apps  

schwit1 writes: Indian troops will not be allowed to use some of the world's most well-known applications. The move goes further than for civilians when the government banned 59 apps, including TikTok, from general use. According to India Today, the Indian Army on Wednesday asked its personnel to delete 89 apps from their phones, including apps such as Facebook, Truecaller, Instagram and games like PUBG. "The latest instruction comes as a bid to plug leakage of sensitive national security inform

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2020-07-10 00:01:00

Apple's ARM-Based Macs To Support Thunderbolt  

tlhIngan writes: For those worried that the transition Apple is doing to ARM-based Macs will drop Thunderbolt, Apple has stated that they will continue to support Thunderbolt. This was a worry since Thunderbolt is primarily an Intel design (formerly known as Light Peak) with Apple collaboration, and that none of Apple's ARM based devices support it (not even the ARM Developer Transition Kit). Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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2020-07-09 23:20:00

Portland Approves 10% Cap On Fees That Food Delivery Apps Can Charge Restuarants  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Oregon Live: The Portland City Council voted unanimously Wednesday to make it illegal for third-party food delivery services like DoorDash and Grubhub to collect more than 10% in commission fees from city restaurants amid the coronavirus pandemic. Portland joins other cities, including Seattle, Los Angeles and Philadelphia, that have instituted similar caps in recent months. Those cities have limits at 15%. New Jersey last week put a 10% service fee cap t

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2020-07-09 22:40:00

AI Researchers Create Testing Tool To Find Bugs in NLP From Amazon, Google, and Microsoft  

AI researchers have created a language-model testing tool that discovers major bugs in commercially available cloud AI offerings from Amazon, Google, and Microsoft. Yesterday, a paper detailing the CheckList tool received the Best Paper award from organizers of the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL) conference. From a report: NLP models today are often evaluated based on how they perform on a series of individual tasks, such as answering questions using benchmark data sets with lead

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2020-07-09 22:05:00

Chrome and Firefox Are Getting Support For the New AVIF Image Format  

The new lightweight and royalty-free AVIF image format is coming to web browsers. Work is almost complete on adding AVIF support to Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. From a report: The new image format is considered one of the lightest and most optimized image compression formats, and has already gained praise from companies such as Netflix, which considers it superior to existing image formats such as JPEG, PNG, and even the newer WebP. The acronym of AVIF stands for AV1 Image File Format. As

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2020-07-09 21:25:00

TikTok Traders Are Pumping Joke Cryptocurrency Dogecoin -- and the Price is Up 95%  

Day traders on viral video app TikTok are encouraging people to speculate on a joke cryptocurrency called Dogecoin. Based on an old Internet meme -- an overly sincere and whimsically grammar-challenged Shiba Inu dog -- the digital coin was developed as a Bitcoin-spinoff in 2013, after which it quickly rose to prominence as a gag. From a report: The shenanigans of the cryptocurrency-pumpers appear to be working, at least for now. The price of Dogecoin has nearly doubled since July 6th, rising 95%

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2020-07-09 20:45:00

Google Campus Security Singled Out Black, Latinx Employees  

Google's campus security system subjected Black and Latinx workers to bias and prompted complaints to management, Bloomberg News reported Thursday, citing people familiar with the situation, leading the company to scrap a key part of the approach. From a report: The internet giant encouraged employees to check colleagues' ID badges on campus, and asked security staff to do the same. This went beyond the typical corporate office system where workers swipe badges to enter. The policy was designed

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2020-07-09 20:03:00

Australia, UK Open Probe Into Clearview Over Data Privacy  

Australian and British privacy regulators opened a joint probe into Clearview AI, saying they want to examine how the company's facial-recognition technology uses people's data, just days after the company suspended operations in Canada. From a report: The Australian Information Commissioner and the U.K. Information Commissioner's Office said they will focus on the company's use of "scraped" data and biometrics of individuals. Clearview is facing growing scrutiny of the billions of images it has

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2020-07-09 19:24:00

Will Astronauts Ever Visit Gas Giants Like Jupiter?  

Trying to get an up close and personal look at the solar system's gas giants is a tricky and dangerous journey. From a report: Jupiter, like the other gas giants, doesn't have a rocky surface, but that doesn't mean it's just a massive cloud floating through the vacuum of space. It's made up of mostly helium and hydrogen, and as you move from the outer layers of the atmosphere toward the deeper parts, that gas grows denser and the pressures become more extreme. Temperatures quickly rise. In 1995,

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2020-07-09 18:45:00

Apple Releases iOS 14, iPadOS 14, and tvOS 14 To Public Beta Testers  

Apple today seeded the first public betas of upcoming iOS 14 and iPadOS 14, and tvOS 14 updates to its public beta testing group, two weeks after first providing the updates to developers after the WWDC keynote. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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2020-07-09 18:04:00

Your Next Samsung Phone May Not Come With a Charger in the Box  

Days after it was rumored that Apple might not ship a charger with its next iPhone, Samsung is copying that, too. According to a new report from South Korea, future Samsung phones may not ship with a charger. From a report: Samsung ships hundreds of millions of smartphones every single year. Dropping the charger from even half of its lineup is going to result in major cost reductions for the company. It may also enable the company to price its affordable devices even more aggressively. According

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2020-07-09 17:25:00

Apple's UK Stores Paid $7.7M in Tax Despite $1.7B in Sales  

The UK retail arm of Apple paid just $7.7m in taxes last year despite raking in almost $1.7bn in sales, according to the company's latest accounts. From a report: Revenue at Apple Retail UK, which operates 38 of the company's stores in the UK, rose by more than 15% in the 12 months to 28 September. But after costs and expenses of around $1.7bn, the firm reported before-tax profits of just $47m, slashing its tax bill significantly. In a statement describing itself as "the largest taxpayer in the

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2020-07-09 16:46:00

Musk Says Tesla Is 'Very Close' To Developing Fully Autonomous Vehicles  

Tesla's Elon Musk said the carmaker is on the verge of developing technology to render its vehicles fully capable of driving themselves, repeating a claim he's made for years but been unable to achieve. From a report: The chief executive officer has long offered exuberant takes on the capabilities of Tesla cars, even going so far as to start charging customers thousands of dollars for a "Full Self Driving" feature in 2016. Years later, Tesla still requires users of its Autopilot system to be ful

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2020-07-09 16:04:00

Microsoft's New KDP Tech Blocks Malware By Making Parts of the Windows Kernel Read-Only  

Microsoft today published technical details about a new security feature that will soon be part of Windows 10. From a report: Named Kernel Data Protection (KDP), Microsoft says this feature will block malware or malicious threat actors from modifying (corrupting) the operating system's memory. According to Microsoft, KDP works by giving developers access to programmatic APIs that will allow them to designate parts of the Windows kernel as read-only sections. "For example, we've seen attackers us

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2020-07-09 15:22:00

UK Universities Comply With China's Internet Restrictions  

UK universities are testing a new online teaching link for students in China -- which will require course materials to comply with Chinese restrictions on the internet. From a report: It enables students in China to keep studying UK degrees online, despite China's limits on internet access. But it means students can only reach material on an "allowed" list. Universities UK said it was "not aware of any instances when course content has been altered." And the universities' body rejected that this

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2020-07-09 14:41:00

Smartwatch Hack Could Trick Patients To 'Take Pills' With Spoofed Alerts  

Security researchers say a smartwatch, popular with the elderly and dementia patients, could have been tricked into letting an attacker easily take control of the device. From a report: These watches are designed to help patients to easily call their carers and for carers to track the location of their patients. They come with their own cellular connection, so that they work anywhere. But researchers at U.K.-based security firm Pen Test Partners found that they could trick the smartwatch into se

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2020-07-09 14:00:00

New Study Detects Ringing of the Global Atmosphere  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Phys.Org: A ringing bell vibrates simultaneously at a low-pitched fundamental tone and at many higher-pitched overtones, producing a pleasant musical sound. A recent study, just published in the Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences by scientists at Kyoto University and the University of Hawai'i at Mnoa, shows that the Earth's entire atmosphere vibrates in an analogous manner, in a striking confirmation of theories developed by physicists over the last two

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2020-07-09 13:00:00

Spreading Rock Dust On Fields Could Remove Vast Amounts of CO2 From Air  

Spreading rock dust on farmland could suck billions of tons of carbon dioxide from the air every year, according to the first detailed global analysis of the technique. The Guardian reports: The chemical reactions that degrade the rock particles lock the greenhouse gas into carbonates within months, and some scientists say this approach may be the best near-term way of removing CO2 from the atmosphere. The rock dust approach, called enhanced rock weathering (ERW), has several advantages, the res

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2020-07-09 10:00:00

Amazon Will Require Third-Party Sellers To Disclose Names, Addresses  

Amazon announced a new policy Wednesday requiring third-party sellers in its marketplace to publicly display their names and addresses starting Sept. 1. Geekwire reports: The disclosure is already required in Europe, Japan, and Mexico. Amazon said it is updating its policy to "ensure there is a consistent baseline of seller information to help customers make informed shopping decisions" in a letter to sellers. Amazon has been working to crack down on knockoff sales on its marketplace for years,

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2020-07-09 07:00:00

Shock-Dissipating Fractal Cubes Could Forge High-Tech Armor  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Phys.Org: Tiny, 3-D printed cubes of plastic, with intricate fractal voids built into them, have proven to be effective at dissipating shockwaves, potentially leading to new types of lightweight armor and structural materials effective against explosions and impacts. "The goal of the work is to manipulate the wave interactions resulting from a shockwave," said Dana Dattelbaum, a scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory and lead author on a paper to app

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2020-07-09 03:30:00

The Far Side Returns After 25 Years, and It's All Digital  

Gary Larson has released new comics for the The Far Side, the first strips since January 1995. Larson does however caution that this is "not a resurrection of The Far Side daily cartoons." He adds: "I'm just exploring, experimenting, and trying stuff." The Verge reports: The first of the new comics features bears, aliens, and taxidermy (all staples of The Far Side). The style is comfortably familiar, with two large exceptions: instead of watercolor, the new comics are done in digital brushstroke

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2020-07-09 02:02:00

Police Are Buying Access To Hacked Website Data  

Some companies are selling government agencies access to data stolen from websites in the hope that it can generate investigative leads, with the data including passwords, email addresses, IP addresses, and more. Motherboard reports: Motherboard obtained webinar slides by a company called SpyCloud presented to prospective customers. In that webinar, the company claimed to "empower investigators from law enforcement agencies and enterprises around the world to more quickly and efficiently bring m

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2020-07-09 01:25:00

Over 100 Wi-Fi Routers Fail Major Security Test -- Protect Yourself Now  

schwit1 shares a report from Tom's Guide: Using its own analytical software, the [Fraunhofer Institute] tested the most recently available firmware for 117 home Wi-Fi models currently sold in Europe, including routers from ASUS, D-Link, Linksys, Netgear, TP-Link, Zyxel and the small German brand AVM. The models themselves were not physically tested. A full list of the tested models and firmware is on GitHub. The institute was not able to examine the firmware of 10 more models, mostly from Linksy

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2020-07-09 00:45:00

China's Great Firewall Descends On Hong Kong Internet Users  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: At midnight on Tuesday, the Great Firewall of China, the vast apparatus that limits the country's internet, appeared to descend on Hong Kong. Unveiling expanded police powers as part of a contentious new national security law, the Hong Kong government enabled police to censor online speech and force internet service providers to hand over user information and shut down platforms. Many residents, already anxious since the law took effect last

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2020-07-09 00:02:00

Nvidia Eclipses Intel As Most Valuable US Chipmaker  

Nvidia has overtaken Intel for the first time as the most valuable U.S. chipmaker. Reuters reports: In a semiconductor industry milestone, Nvidia's shares rose 2.3% in afternoon trading on Wednesday to a record $404, putting the graphic component maker's market capitalization at $248 billion, just above the $246 billion value of Intel, once the world's leading chipmaker. Nvidia's stock has been among Wall Street's strongest performers in recent years as it expanded from its core personal compute

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2020-07-08 23:20:00

Qualcomm Announces Snapdragon 865+: Breaking the 3GHz Threshold  

Today, Qualcomm is announcing an update to its extremely successful Snapdragon 865 SoC: the new Snapdragon 865+. AnandTech reports: The new Snapdragon 865+ is a new binned variant of the [Snapdragon 865] with higher peak frequencies on the part of the "prime" CPU as well as the GPU, promising +10% performance on both aspects. Whilst in relative terms the new chipset's +10% clock improvement isn't all that earth-shattering, in absolute terms it finally allows the new Snapdragon 865+ to be the fir

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2020-07-08 22:40:00

Google Open Sources Trademarks With the Open Usage Commons  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from ZDNet: Google has announced it is launching a new organization, Open Usage Commons (OUC), to host the trademarks for three of its most important new open-source projects. These are Angular, a web application framework for mobile and desktop; Gerrit, a web-based team code-collaboration tool; and Istio, a popular open mesh platform to connect, manage, and secure microservices. While it only covers three Google projects, for now, OUC is meant to give open-so

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2020-07-08 22:02:00

Google Scrapped Cloud Initiative in China, 'Sensitive Markets'  

Google abandoned plans to offer a major new cloud service in China and other politically sensitive countries due in part to concerns over geopolitical tensions and the pandemic, Blloomberg reported Wednesday, citing two employees familiar with the matter, revealing the challenges for U.S. tech giants to secure business in those markets. From a report: In May, the search giant shut down the initiative, known as "Isolated Region" and which sought to address nations' desires to control data within

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2020-07-08 21:25:00

Robinhood Has Lured Young Traders, Sometimes With Devastating Results  

Robinhood users buy and sell the riskiest financial products and do so more frequently than customers at other retail brokerage firms, but their inexperience can lead to staggering losses. From a report: Richard Dobatse, a Navy medic in San Diego, dabbled infrequently in stock trading. But his behavior changed in 2017 when he signed up for Robinhood, a trading app that made buying and selling stocks simple and seemingly free. Mr. Dobatse, now 32, said he had been charmed by Robinhood's one-click

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2020-07-08 20:45:00

Thousands of Contracts Highlight Quiet Ties Between Big Tech and US Military  

Over the past two years, thousands of tech company employees have taken a stand: they do not want their labor and technical expertise to be used for projects with the military or law enforcement agencies. Knowledge of such contracts, however, hasn't been easy for tech workers to come by. From a report: On Wednesday, newly published research from the technology accountability nonprofit Tech Inquiry revealed that the Department of Defense and federal law enforcement agencies including Immigration

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2020-07-08 20:05:00

Warning of Serious Brain Disorders in People With Mild Coronavirus Symptoms  

Doctors may be missing signs of serious and potentially fatal brain disorders triggered by coronavirus, as they emerge in mildly affected or recovering patients, scientists have warned. From a report: Neurologists are on Wednesday publishing details of more than 40 UK Covid-19 patients whose complications ranged from brain inflammation and delirium to nerve damage and stroke. In some cases, the neurological problem was the patient's first and main symptom. The cases, published in the journal Bra

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2020-07-08 19:24:00

Too Little, Too Late: Facebook's Oversight Board Won't Launch Until 'Late Fall'  

Facebook has announced that the limp "Oversight Board" intended to help make difficult content and policy decisions will not launch until "late fall," which is to say, almost certainly after the election. You know, the election everyone is worried Facebook's inability to police itself will serious affect. From a report: On Twitter, the board explained that as much as it would like to "officially begin our task of providing independent oversight of Facebook's content decisions," it regrets that i

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2020-07-08 18:46:00

Mozilla Suspends Firefox Send Service While It Addresses Malware Abuse  

An anonymous reader writes: Mozilla has temporarily suspended the Firefox Send file-sharing service as the organization investigates reports of abuse from malware operators and while it adds a "Report abuse" button. The browser maker took down the service today after ZDNet reached out to inquire about Firefox Send's increasing prevalence in current malware operations. Since last year, several malware operations have hosted payloads on the service. This includes ransomware gangs like REvil/Sodino

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2020-07-08 18:01:00

Google and Canonical Bring Flutter Apps To Linux and the Snap Store  

An anonymous reader writes: Google is partnering with the Ubuntu Desktop team at Canonical to bring Linux support to its open source UI framework Flutter. Today's Linux alpha announcement also means Flutter developers can now deploy their apps to the Snap Store. Flutter group product manager Tim Sneath argues this is a big milestone because UI frameworks rarely become versatile and powerful enough for an operating system to depend on. He pointed to Windows being written in C++ rather than .NET,

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2020-07-08 17:24:00

MIT and Harvard Sue DHS and ICE Over International Student Rule  

Shag writes: Two days after US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) said international students must leave the US if their fall classes will be taught entirely online, MIT and Harvard are suing ICE and the Department of Homeland Security. "ICE is unable to offer the most basic answers about how its policy will be interpreted or implemented," said former international student L. Rafael Reif, President of MIT. Massachusetts' state Attorney General has announced that her office will also chall

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2020-07-08 16:47:00

Brooks Brothers Files For Bankruptcy  

Brooks Brothers, the 200-year-old menswear retailer that has dressed 40 US presidents and unofficially became the outfitter of Wall Street bankers, has filed for bankruptcy. From a report: The privately held company had been struggling as business attire grew more casual in recent years. But it has been decimated by the coronavirus pandemic, which sent demand for suits plummeting. Many working-from-home employees opted for far more relaxed looks of T-shirts and sweatpants rather than pinstripe s

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2020-07-08 16:13:00

Twitter is Working on a Subscription Platform Codenamed Gryphon  

Twitter is working on a new subscription platform under the codename Gryphon, according to two online job postings. From a report: A remote contractor position listed on LinkedIn is seeking a backend Scala software engineer to work for Gryphon, a team that is split across Twitter hubs in San Francisco, New York, and London. According to the post, Gryphon constitutes a mixture of frontend and backend engineers who are "working closely together to deliver something new at Twitter," and involves re

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2020-07-08 15:22:00

Intel Unveils the Thunderbolt 4 Spec, Debuting in PCs in the Fall  

Intel unveiled Thunderbolt 4 on Wednesday, the next iteration of the I/O specification that provides a high-speed peripheral bus to docks, displays, external storage and eGPUs for PCs. Rather than increase the available bandwidth, however, Thunderbolt 4 provides more clarity and helps create new categories of products. From a report: Thunderbolt 4 will debut later this year as part of Intel's "Tiger Lake" CPU platform, as Intel originally announced during CES in January. We now know it will supp

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2020-07-08 14:41:00

Linux Company SUSE Outbids Competitors for Fast-growing Startup Rancher Labs  

SUSE, a Linux distribution company controlled by private equity firm EQT, has agreed to acquire Rancher Labs, a start-up with technology that helps organizations run software in virtual containers across many servers. From a report: The companies announced the deal Wednesday but didn't disclose the terms. Two people familiar with the deal said SUSE is paying $600 million to $700 million. The transaction suggests that even during a recession, demand remains high for technology that can enable com

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2020-07-08 14:07:00

Zoom Offering Hardware As a Service Offering  

Zoom is teaming up with four video conferencing hardware makers to launch Zoom Hardware as a Service, designed to make Zoom Rooms and Zoom Phone more available to enterprises. ZDNet reports: The hardware providers in the package are DTEN, Neat, Poly, and Yealink. The hardware and Zoom bundles give tech buyers a monthly fixed price that varies by system and support by Zoom. Neat and DTEN have already designed hardware systems revolving around Zoom, which has become a household name with growth to

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2020-07-08 10:00:00

WHO To Review Evidence of Airborne Transmission of Coronavirus  

After hundreds of experts urged the World Health Organization to review mounting scientific research, the agency acknowledged on Tuesday that airborne transmission of the coronavirus may be a threat in indoor spaces. The New York Times reports: W.H.O. expert committees are going over evidence on transmission of the virus and plan to release updated recommendations in a few days, agency scientists said in a news briefing. The possibility of airborne transmission, especially in "crowded, closed, p

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2020-07-08 07:00:00

City Builds Open-Access Broadband Network With Google Fiber As Its First ISP  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: Google Fiber's wireline broadband is expanding to a new city for the first time in several years as part of a public-private partnership to build an open-access network that any ISP can use to offer service. The new network will be in West Des Moines, Iowa. Google Fiber "paused" plans to expand to new cities in October 2016 amid lawsuits filed by incumbent ISPs and construction problems that eventually led to the Alphabet-owned ISP's complet

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2020-07-08 03:30:00

Security Cameras Can Tell Burglars When You're Not Home, Study Shows  

schwit1 shares a report from CNN: Some popular home security cameras could allow would-be burglars to work out when you've left the building, according to a study published Monday. Researchers found they could tell if someone was in, and even what they were doing in the home, just by looking at data uploaded by the camera and without monitoring the video footage itself. The international study was carried out by researchers from Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) and the Chinese Academy of S

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2020-07-08 02:03:00

AMD Launches Ryzen 3000XT Series CPUs At Higher Clock Speeds To Battle Intel  

MojoKid writes: Last month, AMD made its Ryzen 3000XT series processors official, after weeks of leaks and speculation. Ryzen 3000XT series processors are tweaked versions of the original 3000X series products, but with higher clocks and the ability to maintain turbo frequencies longer. Launching today, AMD's new Ryzen 5 3600XT is a 6 core/12-thread processor, with a 3.8GHz base clock and a 4.5GHz max boost clock. That's a 100MHz increase over the 3600X. The Ryzen 7 3800XT is an 8-core/16-thread

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2020-07-08 01:30:00

Mathematician Ronald Graham Dies At 84  

The American Mathematical Society has announced the passing of Ronald Graham, "one of the principal architects of the rapid development worldwide of discrete mathematics in recent years." He died July 6th at the age of 84. From the report: Graham published more than 350 papers and books with many collaborators, including more than 90 with his wife, Fan Chung, and more than 30 with Paul Erdos. In addition to writing articles with Paul Erdos, Graham had a room in his house reserved for Erdos's fre

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2020-07-08 01:09:00

Cops Seize Server That Hosted BlueLeaks, DDoSecrets Says  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Motherboard: Authorities in Germany have seized a server used by the organization that published a trove of US police internal documents commonly known as BlueLeaks, according to the organization's founder. On Tuesday, Emma Best, the founder of Distributed Denial of Secrets or DDoSecrets, a WikiLeaks-like website that has published the police data, said that prosecutors in the German town of Zwickau seized the organization's "primary public download serve

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2020-07-08 00:45:00

Only 9% of Visitors Give GDPR Consent To Be Tracked  

Marko Saric, a digital marketing consultant and blogger, conducted his own experiment to find out how many visitors would engage with a GDPR banner and grant GDPR consent to their information being collected and shared. For his study, Saric used Metomic for his GDPR consent banner and tested it on two different websites during June. "Site 1 was a site about a tech topic with the majority of visitors coming from Google organic search (60%) and browsing from laptop or desktop devices (60%)," write

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2020-07-08 00:02:00

Nokia To Add Open Interfaces To Its Telecom Equipment  

Nokia has become the first major telecom equipment maker to commit to adding open interfaces in its products that will allow mobile operators to build networks that are not tied to a vendor. Reuters reports: The new technology, dubbed Open Radio Access Network (Open RAN), aims to reduce reliance on any one vendor by making every part of a telecom network interoperable and allowing operators to choose different suppliers for different components. Currently, Nokia along with Ericsson and Huawei su

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2020-07-07 23:25:00

Facebook Boycott Leaders 'Disappointed' After Meeting With Zuckerberg, Sandberg  

Leaders from four of the organizations spearheading the #StopHateforProfit campaign sat down with Mark Zuckerberg, Sheryl Sandberg and Chief Product Officer Chris Cox today to discuss the demands of a large advertiser boycott that now includes hundreds of brands. According to Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt, the chat was an unequivocal disappointment. "Today we saw little and heard just about nothing," said Greenblatt, adding that Facebook fails to apply "energy and urgency" to is

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2020-07-07 23:03:00

Microsoft Brings Android OS Development for Surface Duo In-house With Movial Acquisition  

Microsoft is forming a team internally under the Microsoft Devices division that will handle the development of the Android OS for Surface Duo going forward. Windows Central: According to my sources, up until now, Microsoft had contracted the OS work out to third-party vendors such as Movial, who had the expertise required to bring Android to life on Surface Duo. Movial is a software, services, and design engineering company that was working closely with Microsoft on Surface Duo during its proto

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2020-07-07 22:45:00

Trump Administration Begins Formal Withdrawal From WHO  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Hill: The White House has officially moved to withdraw the United States from the World Health Organization (WHO), a senior administration official confirmed Tuesday, breaking ties with a global public health body in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic. The U.S. has submitted its withdrawal notification to the United Nations secretary-general, the official said. Withdrawal requires a year's notice, so it will not go into effect until July 6, 2021,

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2020-07-07 22:05:00

7th Former eBay Employee Charged In Cyberstalking Campaign Targeting Natick Couple  

A seventh former eBay employee is now facing federal charges in connection with a cyberstalking campaign that allegedly targeted a Natick couple who wrote critical content about the company in its newsletter. From a report: Philip Cooke, 55, of San Jose, Calif. is charged with conspiracy to commit cyberstalking and conspiracy to tamper with witnesses. Cooke, who was a former Santa Clara police captain and was supervisor of security operations at eBay's European and Asian offices, is expected to

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2020-07-07 21:25:00

EPA Approves Two Lysol Products as the First To Effectively Kill Novel Coronavirus on Surfaces  

The US Environmental Protection Agency has approved two Lysol products as effective against the novel coronavirus when used on hard, non-porous surfaces. From a report: Lysol Disinfectant Spray and Lysol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist meet the EPA's criteria for use against the SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the ongoing pandemic, based on laboratory testing that found both products kill the virus two minutes after contact, the agency announced in a statement. While there are more than 42

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2020-07-07 20:43:00

Microsoft Will Axe Control Panel From Windows 10  

Microsoft seems to be getting a kick out seeing users struggle to find Windows 10 features these days. After moving the Fresh Start feature in the latest version, 2004, and reducing the number of days Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, and Education users can manually delay updates, the company is now experimenting with moving key Control Panel features, including System information, to Settings, Windows Latest blog spotted. From a report: It's a change that some long-time Windows users might not take

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2020-07-07 20:05:00

Walmart's Amazon Prime Competitor Will Launch This Month  

Amazon may have a 15-year head start, but Walmart is close to finally unveiling its own membership program that it hopes will eventually become an alternative to Amazon Prime. From a report: Walmart plans to launch a new subscription service later this month called Walmart+ that will cost $98 a year. It will include perks like same-day delivery of groceries and general merchandise, discounts on fuel at Walmart gas stations, and early access to product deals, multiple sources told Recode. Walmart

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2020-07-07 19:25:00

Why Time Feels So Weird in 2020  

Some days seem to pass very slowly while some weeks, and even months, fly by. A set of simple perception tests illustrate some factors that can distort our sense of time. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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2020-07-07 18:45:00

Billionaire-Backed Received $1-2 Million Federal PPP Loan  

theodp writes:'s $10+ million "Diamond" supporters include Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon, and Infosys. Its $3+ million "Platinum" supporters include Google, the Gates Foundation, and the Ballmer Group. And its $1+ million "Gold" supporters include Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates, the world's two richest men. So, it was somewhat surprising to see the nonprofit -- which is dedicated to pushing CS into K-12 classrooms -- pop up on the list of Seattle-area tech companies that received a PPP loan fr

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2020-07-07 18:05:00

US is 'Looking at' Banning TikTok and Chinese Social Media Apps, Pompeo Says  

The U.S. is "looking at" banning TikTok and other Chinese social media apps, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News. From a report: His comments come amid rising tensions between the U.S. and China and as scrutiny on TikTok and Chinese technology firms continues to grow. When asked in a Fox News interview if the U.S. should be looking at banning TikTok and other Chinese social media apps, Pompeo said: "We are taking this very seriously. We are certainly looking at it. We have worked on thi

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2020-07-07 17:28:00

Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro Tests Positive for Covid-19 After Months of Dismissing the Seriousness of the Virus  

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has tested positive for Covid-19, following months of downplaying the virus. From a report: Bolsonaro himself announced the result, speaking on Brazilian TV channels Tuesday. "Everyone knew that it would reach a considerable part of the population sooner or later. It was positive for me," he said, referring to the Covid-19 test he took Monday. "On Sunday, I wasn't feeling very well. On Monday, it got worse when I started feeling tired and some muscle pain. I al

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2020-07-07 16:46:00

Microsoft Seizes Six Domains Used in COVID-19 Phishing Operations  

Microsoft has obtained a court order this month allowing the company to seize control of six domains that were used in phishing operations against Office 365 customers, including in campaigns that leveraged COVID-19 lures. From a report: According to court documents obtained by ZDNet, Microsoft has targeted a two-person phishing operation that has been targeting the company's customers since December 2019. The duo operated by sending emails to companies that hosted email servers and enterprise i

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2020-07-07 16:07:00

Microsoft Exec Peggy Johnson Joins Troubled Augmented Reality Startup Magic Leap as CEO  

Microsoft executive Peggy Johnson will join Magic Leap as CEO in August, the startup announced Tuesday. From a report: Johnson joins the augmented reality start-up after leading Microsoft's M&A strategy and launching its venture fund as executive vice president of business development. She was hired by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella in 2014 after a 24-year career at Qualcomm, where she worked in several roles, including running the internet services unit. At Microsoft, Johnson was a member of t

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2020-07-07 15:33:00

Alphabet's Loon Launches Its Balloon-Powered Kenyan Internet Service  

Alphabet's Loon has officially begun operating its commercial internet service in Kenya. This is the first large-scale commercial offering that makes use of Loon's high-altitude balloons, which essentially work as cell service towers that drift on currents in the Earth's upper atmosphere. From a report: Loon's Kenyan service is offered in partnership with local telecom provider Telkom Kenya, and provides cellular service through their network to an area covering roughly 50,000 square kilometres

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2020-07-07 14:43:00

Big Tech Faceoff With China Risks Sparking Exodus From Hong Kong  

Facebook, Google and Twitter -- all of which are blocked in the mainland -- are now headed toward a showdown with China that could end up making Hong Kong feel more like Beijing. From a report: Hours after Hong Kong announced sweeping new powers to police the internet on Monday night, those companies plus the likes of Microsoft and Zoom all suspended requests for data from the Hong Kong government. ByteDance's TikTok, which has Chinese owners, announced it would pull its viral video app from the

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2020-07-07 14:03:00

US Online Grocery Sales Hit Record $7.2 Billion In June  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from TechCrunch: Despite the slow reopening of the U.S. economy over the past several weeks, online grocery shopping is continuing to reach ever-higher numbers as Americans seem to be in no rush to return to the store. According to new research released today by Brick Meets Click and Mercatus, U.S. online grocery sales hit a record $7.2 billion in June, up 9% over May, as 45.6 million households turned to online grocery pickup and delivery services for a large

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2020-07-07 13:00:00

Hackers Are Exploiting a 5-Alarm Bug In Networking Equipment  

Andy Greenberg writes via Wired: Late last week, government agencies, including the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team and Cyber Command, sounded the alarm about a particularly nasty vulnerability in a line of BIG-IP products sold by F5. The agencies recommended security professionals immediately implement a patch to protect the devices from hacking techniques that could fully take control of the networking equipment, offering access to all the traffic they touch and a foothold for

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2020-07-07 10:00:00

Moon's Metal-Rich Craters Challenge Popular Theories About Its Origin  

schwit1 shares a report from UPI: The most popular theory of the moon's origins contends the satellite was formed when a Mars-sized object collided with Earth, vaporizing large portions of Earth's upper crust. While Earth's upper crust is poor in metals, new research -- published Wednesday in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters -- suggests the moon's subsurface is surprisingly metal-rich, undermining the satellite's proposed origin story. Authors of the new study suggest planetary sc

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2020-07-07 07:00:00

Giant Flywheel Project In Scotland Could Prevent UK Blackouts  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: A giant flywheel in north-east Scotland could soon help to prevent blackouts across Britain by mimicking the effect of a power station but without using fossil fuels. The trailblazing project near Keith in Moray, thought to cost about 25 million British pounds, will not generate electricity or produce carbon emissions -- but it could help keep the lights on by stabilizing the energy grid's electrical frequency. The Norwegian energy company S

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2020-07-07 03:30:00

Microsoft's Next Xbox Series X Game Showcase Coming July 23  

Microsoft will be holding its next Xbox Games Showcase on July 23, the company announced today. Ars Technica reports: Unlike Microsoft's May promotional event, which focused on third-party launch titles for the upcoming console, the July 23 event is expected to discuss first-party exclusives from Microsoft's own Xbox Game Studios. That likely includes new footage of Halo Infinite, which saw a new teaser trailer a few weeks ago. That lineup of first-party studios now includes Psychonauts 2 develo

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2020-07-07 01:30:00

New H.266 VCC Codec Up To 50% More Efficient Than Previous Standard  

The Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute on Tuesday announced the H.266 Versatile Video Coding codec, which will power more data-efficient video capture and transmission on future iPhones. AppleInsider reports: Apple adopted the predecessor to the new codec, H.265/HEVC, in iOS 11. The updated video codec, which was developed after years of research and standardization, will bring a number of tangible benefits to future iPhone users. In its announcement, the Fraunhofer HHI said that H.266 will red

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2020-07-07 00:50:00

Microsoft Is Interested In Acquiring Warner Bros. Gaming Unit  

According to a new report from The Information, Microsoft is interested in bidding on Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, which is currently a division of AT&T. From a report: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, or WB Games, is known for publishing the "Batman: Arkham" series, "Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor," many "Lego" and "Harry Potter" games, "Mortal Kombat," and "The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt." The unit consists of game-development studios in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. AT&T a

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2020-07-07 00:30:00

How Google Docs Became the Social Media of the Resistance  

An anonymous reader quotes a report from MIT Technology Review: In just the last week, Google Docs has emerged as a way to share everything from lists of books on racism to templates for letters to family members and representatives to lists of funds and resources that are accepting donations. Shared Google Docs that anyone can view and anyone can edit, anonymously, have become a valuable tool for grassroots organizing during both the coronavirus pandemic and the police brutality protests sweepi

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2020-07-07 00:10:00

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