Geek

Comical iPhone XR ad shows off Portrait Mode Depth Control: ‘Did you bokeh my child?’

9to5Mac - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 15:36

Apple has today rolled out a new ad titled “Bokeh’d” focused on the computational bokeh effect found on iPhone 7 Plus and later. With newer iPhone generations, users can adjust the amount of bokeh.

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Twitter saves deleted direct messages for years, says security researcher

9to5Mac - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 15:27

A new report from TechCrunch today reveals that Twitter holds on to deleted direct messages for years, in some cases even for accounts that have been suspended or deactivated.

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Robot Squeezes Suspected Nuclear Fuel Debris in Fukushima Reactor

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 15:19
A robot outfitted with remotely controlled pinchers poked at debris that's suspected to contain molten nuclear fuel at the bottom of one of Fukushima's nuclear reactors, World Nuclear News reports. From a report: The poking and prodding is part of the ongoing cleanup effort at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi power plant, the site of a major nuclear accident in 2011. The dextrous robot was dangled into the Unit 2 reactor on February 13th, according to a news release from the plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO). Unit 2 is one of the reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant that overheated after a massive earthquake and tsunami hit Japan in 2011, which caused the reactor core to melt. TEPCO suspects that radioactive fuel may have melted through the bottom of the reactor vessel to fall into the containment structure surrounding it. The company has to find the radioactive debris and figure out how to remove them, so TEPCO has been sending in a series of robots to scout out the reactors. It's a dangerous journey that some of the robots haven't survived.

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Comment: With Apple’s March event focused on services, when should we expect hardware updates?

9to5Mac - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 14:55

At the start of the week, you could reasonably guess that Apple might hold its semi-regular spring event to unveil a new 10-inch iPad and smaller iPad mini 5, an updated iPod touch, possibly AirPods 2, and new features in iOS 12.2. Reliable reporting has since adjusted expectations, giving us a rumored event date and a focus on new subscription news and video services in place of any hardware. So when should we expect to see all that rumored hardware if there’s no hardware event?

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Samsung is launching three new stores in the US as Galaxy turns 10

iDownloadBlog - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 14:45

The newest stores are the first company-run locations where fans can actually buy Samsung devices, not just try them.
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Copyright Office Refuses Registration for 'Fresh Prince' Star Alfonso Ribeiro's "Carlton Dance"

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 14:33
The U.S. Copyright Office is skeptical about Fresh Prince of Bel-Air actor Alfonso Ribeiro's ownership claim over the signature "Carlton Dance," which became famous after a 1991 episode of the Will Smith series. From a report: In correspondence last month that was surfaced on Wednesday in California federal court, Saskia Florence, a supervisory registration specialist in the Office's Performing Arts Division, told Ribeiro's attorney that registration must be refused because his claimed "choreographic work" was a "simple dance routine." [...] Take-Two Interactive, publisher of the game NBA 2K, is now seizing upon the refusal in support of the argument that movements for the "Carlton Dance" are not protectable. Ribeiro is suing Take-Two as well as the publisher of Fortnite over special features that allow game players to have their avatars perform the dance. In a dismissal brief, Kirkland & Ellis attorney Dale Cendali makes some of the same arguments she did earlier in the week in an attempt to reject a similar lawsuit over Fortnite from the rapper 2 Milly. But there are particular contentions specifically directed at Ribeiro's claim.

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How to use Apple Music and Alexa on your Amazon Echo speaker

iDownloadBlog - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 14:30

Amazon Echo

Do you have an Amazon Echo speaker along with an Apple Music subscription? Here’s how to connect Apple Music and Alexa and listen to your favorite tunes.
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Pokémon GO may be forced to change Poké Stops and Gyms in game after lawsuit settlement

9to5Mac - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 14:17

A proposed settlement for Pokémon GO developer Niantic in its class action lawsuit suggests that it could be removing or changing some Poké Stops and Gyms within the game. According to a report from Variety, the proposed settlement was filed on Thursday in a California court. If approved, Pokémon GO will need to remove Poké Stops or Gyms that are on private property.

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An Insect-bot Mimics Desert Ants by Looking at the Sky To Navigate

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 13:56
From a report: A new robot can navigate without GPS, using the same light-sensing abilities as desert ants. Desert ants survive in searingly hot conditions in the Sahara. They sometimes have just a few minutes to forage for food before they risk burning to death. As a result, they are very efficient navigators, using bands of polarized light, invisible to humans, to get around. They also carefully count their steps. These two tactics help to keep them alive. AntBot: The bot, described this week in Science Robotics, is fitted with UV light sensors that can detect polarized light from the sun. This is known as a "celestial compass" and is designed to mimic the way desert ants see the sun's light. This helps it work out the direction it's going in. The robot also counts its steps, much like its desert muse. In tests, it successfully managed to complete an outdoor homing task, where it was required to go to several checkpoints and then return to a fixed location within a range of 14 meters.

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Amazon Will Pay $0 in Federal Taxes on $11.2 Billion Profits

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 13:15
Those wondering how many zeros Amazon, which is valued at nearly $800 billion, has to pay in federal taxes might be surprised to learn that its check to the IRS will read exactly $0.00. From a report: According to a report published by the Institute on Taxation and Economic (ITEP) policy Wednesday, the e-tail/retail/tech/entertainment/everything giant won't have to pay a cent in federal taxes for the second year in a row. This tax-free break comes even though Amazon almost doubled its U.S. profits from $5.6 billion to $11.2 billion between 2017 and 2018. To top it off, Amazon actually reported a $129 million 2018 federal income tax rebate -- making its tax rate -1%.

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NASA's SPHEREx Mission Will Investigate the Origins of the Universe

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 12:35
NASA announced this week that it will create the Spectro-Photometer for the History of the Universe, Epoch of Reionization and Ices Explorer: SPHEREx for short. It'll look at how our universe has changed, and how common the ingredients of life are in the Milky Way. From a report: The space agency is aiming for a 2023 launch and has already earmarked $242 million for the project, not including launch costs, which is supposed to last for at least two years. Once SPHEREx is already in orbit, it will observe and collect data on over 300 million galaxies, some as far as 10 billion light-years away from Earth, and 100 million stars in our own Milky Way every six months. It will use technologies adapted from Earth satellites and Mars spacecraft to survey the sky in optical and near-infrared light. Since it will use 96 wavelengths in all, it will give NASA a way to create an extremely detailed sky map with a resolution that's much, much higher than previous ones.

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Venezuela's Government Appears To be Trying To Hack Activists With Phishing Pages

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 11:55
Hackers allegedly working for the embattled Venezuelan government tried to trick activists into giving away their passwords to popular services such as Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, and others, according to security researchers. From a report: Last week, the Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido called for citizens to volunteer with the goal of helping international humanitarian organizations deliver aid into the country. President Nicolas Maduro is refusing to accept aid and has erected blocks across a border bridge with Colombia with the military's help. The volunteer efforts were organized around the website voluntariosxvenezuela.com. A week later, on February 11 someone registered an almost identical domain, voluntariosvenezuela[.]com. And on Wednesday, users in Venezuela who were trying to visit the original and official VoluntariosxVenezuela website were redirected to the newer one, according to security firm Kaspersky Lab, as well as Venezuelan users on Twitter.

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How to stop autoplaying videos in YouTube’s Home feed

iDownloadBlog - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 11:31

If you have a cellular data cap or just loathe those annoying autoplaying videos, you may want to disable the Autoplay feature in the Home feed of the mobile YouTube app. iDownloadBlog shows you how.
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Interviews: Ask Social Network Minds.com CEO and Founder Bill Ottman a Question

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 11:15
As you may have noticed, Facebook is not cool anymore. The social juggernaut has been mired in controversies -- infamous privacy scandals or company's ruthless "grow fast and break things" approach to gain users, to name a few. Luckily enough, some people are trying to build new social networks and are coming up with interesting original ideas. Minds.com is one such social network. The open source social network, which has been operational since 2012, works on a point-earning/exchange system to give users full control over the reach of their posts. One of the complaints people have with Facebook and Twitter is that they feel their posts are not being seen by all of their friends. Minds.com lets users earn points and then trade those points to boost their posts on the platform. Users earn tokens by being active on the platform and engaging in uploading, voting, commenting and other similar activities. They can then use these tokens, which can be exchanged within the platform, to boost the reach of their posts. The company last year launched a cryptocurrency reward program based on the ethereum blockchain for all users on the platform. Minds says it does not determine what should be censored. Users are free to post whatever they want. (You can follow us on Minds.) We are excited to announced that Minds founder and chief executive Bill Ottman has agreed to do an interview with us. If you have a question about Minds.com for him or his take on the current social networking space, feel free to ask it in the comments section below.

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unc0ver v3.0.0 pre-release updated with initial support for tihmstar’s v3ntex exploit

iDownloadBlog - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 11:06

Hacker and unc0ver lead developer Pwn20wnd has revised the unc0ver v3.0.0 pre-release on Friday with initial support for tihmstar's recently-released v3ntex exploit for iOS 12. Learn more inside.
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Visa, Mastercard Mull Increasing Fees For Processing Transactions: Report

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 10:30
Visa and Mastercard, the two biggest U.S. card networks, are preparing to increase certain fees levied on U.S. merchants for processing transactions that will kick in this April, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing people familiar with the matter. From a report: Some of the changes relate to so-called interchange fees, the report said. Interchange fees are what merchants pay to banks when consumers use a credit or a debit card to make a purchase from their store. Fees that Mastercard and Visa charge financial institutions, such as banks, for processing card payments on behalf of merchants are also set to increase, the report said.

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Test compares cellular speeds for top iPhone models, difference between the iPhone 5s and XS, more

9to5Mac - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 10:11

A new study from OpenSignal published today looks into the cellular performance of the most popular iPhones going back to 2013. While there’s nothing too surprising in the findings, it does nail down exactly what speeds each model sees, how much owners of older iPhones are missing out, how much iPhone cellular speeds have grown over the years, and a few other interesting details.

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After Calls For an Edit Button, Twitter Says it is Considering a 'Clarification' Feature

Slashdot - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 09:50
Despite years-long calls from power users for an "edit" button, Twitter is considering how it could enable 'clarifications' of tweets, CEO Jack Dorsey said Thursday at Goldman Sachs' tech conference in San Francisco. From a report: "One of the concepts we're thinking about is clarifications," Dorsey said, saying that it could function similarly to a quote tweet. "Kind of like retweet with comment.. to add some context and some color on what they might have tweeted, or what they might have meant." People already often use the quote tweet option for this kind of thing, but the two tweets may not always have the same reach, Dorsey noted. But if the person had opted to "clarify" that tweet, then the original tweet could always appear with the subsequent clarification. Dorsey cautioned that the feature is still just something the company is thinking about, not necessarily something that would launch. But he said such a feature could help people feel more comfortable with Twitter.

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9to5Mac Daily: February 15, 2019

9to5Mac - Fri, 02/15/2019 - 09:41

Listen to a recap of the top stories of the day from 9to5Mac. 9to5Mac Daily is available on iTunes and Apple’s Podcasts app, Stitcher, TuneIn, Google Play, or through our dedicated RSS feed for Overcast and other podcast players.


https://9to5mac.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/6/2019/02/9to5Mac-Daily-02-15-2019.mp3

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