Geek

Apple’s already signed up may publishers for a news service with a 50:50 revenue split

iDownloadBlog - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 08:17

Some publishers bet that Apple's brand and marketing power will prompt millions of people to become subscribers.
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Security hole in Mojave allows rogue apps to access your Safari browsing history

9to5Mac - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 08:12

An attempt by Apple to protect your Safari browsing history in macOS Mojave has a security hole which allows full access by a rogue app, says a Mac and iOS developer.

Prior to Mojave, your browsing history was freely available to any app that looked inside  ~/Library/Safari. In macOS 10.14, however, Apple locked down access so tightly that you can’t even list the contents in Terminal – in theory …

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Smart Cat Shelter Uses AI To Let Strays Inside, Keep Dogs Out

Slashdot - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 08:00
"China's top search engine company Baidu made a smart cat shelter in Beijing that uses AI to verify when a cat is approaching and open its door," writes Slashdot reader AmiMoJo. "The cat shelter is heated and also offers cats food and water." Mashable reports: It can accurately identify 174 different cat breeds, as to let them enter and exit as they please. A door will slide open if the camera spots a cat, but it won't work on dogs. Multiple cats can fit inside the space. Another neat camera feature is that it can be also used to detect if the cat is sick -- it can identify four common cat diseases, such as inflammation, skin problems, and physical trauma. Once a cat is identified as needing care, associated volunteers can be informed to come and collect it. "Homeless cats often struggle to survive the winter in Beijing, and even though volunteers feed them their water bowls freeze over in the cold," adds AmiMoJo. "Due to many people living in apartments that don't allow pets, they can't simply bring the cats home." Baidu has a blog post detailing the shelter and its use of artificial intelligence.

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Boost your typing speed to 100+ WPM with Typesy

iDownloadBlog - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 08:00

No matter what field you're in, if you work in an office space, there's a good chance you spend a significant portion of your day typing away on a keyboard. As such, a great deal of your productivity is linked to your typing speed; and while some were gifted with lightning-fast typing abilities, the rest of us could use a boost. Typesy  can get you up to speed, and lifetime subscriptions are on sale for only $19.99.
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Future of Google News in doubt as EU finalizes controversial copyright legislation

9to5Mac - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 07:37

There is now some uncertainty about the future of Google News in Europe after the European Union finalized its controversial new copyright legislation.

Google had previously showed how dramatically its search results could be affected, and warned that it may shut down the service in Europe …

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Best Buy Presidents’ Day Sale: up to $400 off MacBooks, $150 off iPad Pro, HomePod, TVs, more

9to5Mac - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 07:23

Best Buy’s annual Presidents’ Day Sale is now live with deals across just about every category. You’ll need to be a My Best Buy member to get access today, but don’t fret it’s free to sign-up. This promotion becomes available for all tomorrow and runs through Monday. Free shipping is available on orders over $35 or you can opt for in-store pickup today. Head below for deals on Apple’s latest MacBooks, Apple Watch, TVs, smart home gear and more.

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Imagine that Steve Jobs were designing our next-generation rifle, US Army tells contractors

9to5Mac - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 06:59

The project manager in charge of commissioning the design of the US Army’s next-generation rifle has likened the task to ‘Steve Jobs and his engineers trying to convert the iPod Touch to the first 3G iPhone‘ …

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Airbus Is Giving Up On the A380

Slashdot - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 06:30
"It's the end of the line for the biggest passenger jet ever built: the A380 is going to cease production," writes Slashdot reader Required Snark, citing a report from CNN. From the report: The European plane maker said Thursday that it will stop delivering A380s in 2021 after its key customer, Dubai-based airline Emirates, slashed its orders for the huge jetliner. "We have no substantial A380 backlog and hence no basis to sustain production, despite all our sales efforts with other airlines in recent years," Airbus CEO Tom Enders said in a company statement. The company has delivered 234 of the superjumbos to date, less than a quarter of the 1,200 it predicted it would sell when it first introduced the double-decker aircraft. Its plans were undermined by airlines shifting their interest to lighter, more fuel efficient passenger jets that have reduced the need to ferry passengers between the big hubs. "Passengers all over the world love to fly on this great aircraft. Hence today's announcement is painful for us and the A380 communities worldwide," Enders said. "But keep in mind that A380s will still roam the skies for many years to come and Airbus will of course continue to fully support the A380 operators."

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Personal Information of 14.8 Million 500px Users Exposed In Security Breach

Slashdot - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 05:00
Photo-sharing service 500px has announced that it was the victim of a hack back in July 2018 and that personal data was exposed for all the roughly 14.8 million accounts that existed at the time. PetaPixel reports: In an email sent out to users and an announcement posted to its website, 500px states that it was only on February 8th, 2019, that its team learned of an unauthorized intrusion to its system that occurred on or around July 5th, 2018. The personal data that may have been stolen by the intruder includes first and last names, usernames, email addresses, password hashes (i.e. not plaintext passwords), location (i.e. city, state, country), birth date, and gender. The company has reset all 500px account passwords, so to get back into your account you'll need to pick a new one using the recovery email system. "At this time, there is no indication of unauthorized access to your account, and no evidence that other data associated with your user profile was affected, such as credit card information (which is not stored on our servers), if used to make any purchases, or any other sensitive personal information," 500px says. "We recommend you change your password on any other website or app on which you use a password that is the same as or similar to your password for your 500px account," 500px says.

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Apple to resume selling banned iPhone models in Germany exclusively with Qualcomm inside

9to5Mac - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 04:54

Apple will resume sales of iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 devices in Germany, after a ruling in December forced the company to halt sales of the two devices for infringing on Qualcomm patents.

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How to sync Contacts with iCloud

9to5Mac - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 03:01

Apple’s ecosystem means using services such as iCloud to seamlessly sync important information from one device to another. Follow along to learn how to sync your contacts with iCloud.

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How to set up and use Find My iPhone

9to5Mac - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 03:00

Do you want to enable the option to play a sound on and locate your iPhone and other Apple devices? Follow along for how to set up and use Find My iPhone with Siri, HomePod, and all of your other Apple devices.

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Your GPS Devices May Stop Working On April 6 If You Don't Or Can't Update Firmware

Slashdot - Thu, 02/14/2019 - 02:00
Zorro shares a report from The Register: Older satnavs and such devices won't be able to use America's Global Positioning System properly after April 6 unless they've been suitably updated or designed to handle a looming epoch rollover. GPS signals from satellites include a timestamp, needed in part to calculate one's location, that stores the week number using ten binary bits. That means the week number can have 210 or 1,024 integer values, counting from zero to 1,023 in this case. Every 1,024 weeks, or roughly every 20 years, the counter rolls over from 1,023 to zero. The first Saturday in April will mark the end of the 1,024th week, after which the counter will spill over from 1,023 to zero. The last time the week number overflowed like this was in 1999, nearly two decades on from the first epoch in January 1980. You can see where this is going. If devices in use today are not designed or patched to handle this latest rollover, they will revert to an earlier year after that 1,024th week in April, causing attempts to calculate position to potentially fail. System and navigation data could even be corrupted, we're warned. U.S. Homeland Security explained the issue in a write-up this week. GPS.gov also notes that the new CNAV and MNAV message formats will use a 13-bit week number, so this issue shouldn't happen again anytime soon. The site recommend users consult the manufacturer of their equipment to make sure they have the proper updates in place.

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Apple continues enterprise certificate cleanup as distributors found sharing ad-free Spotify, more

9to5Mac - Wed, 02/13/2019 - 22:38

The barrage of applications taking advantage of Apple’s enterprise certificate program continues today. Reuters reports that software distributors have been using the program to share modified versions of popular apps, such as an ad-free version of Spotify.

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Electric Car Batteries Might Be Worth Recycling, But Bus Batteries Aren't Yet

Slashdot - Wed, 02/13/2019 - 22:30
Iwastheone shares a report from Ars Technica: Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University published a paper in Nature Sustainability this week that looks at the emissions and economic costs associated with recycling automotive batteries. They specifically addressed batteries with three types of cathode chemistry: nickel manganese cobalt oxide (NMC), nickel cobalt aluminum oxide (NCA), and iron phosphate (LFP). The first two cathode chemistries are common in passenger vehicles, and LFP is common in buses (bus maker BYD uses LFP batteries, for example). Since the packaging of batteries is important to the recycling method, cylindrical batteries (the types of cells that Tesla makes) are compared to pouch cell batteries in the analysis. The researchers also compared recycling methods. These include pyrometallurgical recycling (exposing the valuable parts of the battery to high temperatures and then recovering those metals as alloys), hydrometallurgical recycling (leaching valuable metals from batteries and separating the desired metals from the resulting solution), and "direct cathode recycling," where the battery's cathode is retained as-is, but new lithium is added in such a way that the battery regains its original performance. Ultimately, LFP-cathode batteries were not able to avoid additional emissions under any recycling circumstances. The iron materials used in those bus batteries are already efficient to mine, the paper notes. This results "in a smaller GHG [greenhouse gas] emissions offset from the recovered materials that is insufficient to offset the energy and GHG emissions associated with the recycling processes considered." For now, new bus batteries seem to be cheaper and better for the environment than recycled bus batteries. The story is more complicated for electric passenger vehicle batteries, however. For both NMC and NCA cells, hydrometallurgical and direct cathode removal recycling methods do result in a reduction of GHG emissions, but only recycling via direct cathode removal with pouch cells shows a statistically significant reduction in emissions.

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Gboard for iOS updated with haptic feedback on iPhone 7 and later

9to5Mac - Wed, 02/13/2019 - 22:10

While the Taptic Engine has been a staple of flagship iPhones since 2016, most iOS keyboards — including the system default — do not support haptic feedback. Google today updated Gboard with support for haptics on every key press.

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Netflix Has Saved Every Choice You've Ever Made In 'Black Mirror: Bandersnatch'

Slashdot - Wed, 02/13/2019 - 21:10
According to a technology policy researcher, Netflix records all the choices you make in Black Mirror's Bandersnatch episode. "Michael Veale, a technology policy researcher at University College London, wanted to know what data Netflix was collecting from Bandersnatch," reports Motherboard. "People had been speculating a lot on Twitter about Netflix's motivations," Veale told Motherboard in an email. "I thought it would be a fun test to show people how you can use data protection law to ask real questions you have." From the report: The law Veale used is Europe's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The GDPR granted EU citizens a right to access -- anyone can request a wealth of information from a company collecting data. Users can formally request a company such as Netflix tell them the reason its collecting data, the categories they're sorting data into, third parties it's sharing the data with, and other information. Veale used this right of access to ask Netflix questions about Bandersnatch and revealed the answers in a Twitter thread. He found that Netflix is tracking the decisions its users make (which makes sense considering how the film works), and that it is keeping those decisions long after a user has finished the film. It is also stores aggregated forms of the users choice to "help [Netflix] determine how to improve this model of storytelling in the context of a show or movie," the company said in its email response to him. The .csv and PDF files displayed Veale's journey through Bandersnatch, every choice displayed in a long line for him to see. After sending along a copy of his passport to prove his identity, Veale got the answers he wanted from Netflix via email and -- in a separate email -- a link to a website where he downloaded an encrypted version of his data. He had to use a Netflix-provided key to unlock the data, which came in the form of a .csv file and a PDF. Veale is concerned by what he learned. Netflix didn't tell Veale how long it keeps the data and what the long term deletion plans are. "They claim they're doing the processing as it's 'necessary' for performing the contract between me and Netflix," Veale told Motherboard. "Is storing that data against my account really 'necessary'? They clearly haven't delinked it or anonymized it, as I've got access to it long after I watched the show. If you asked me, they should really be using consent (which you should be able to refuse) or legitimate interests (meaning you can object to it) instead."

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Google Will Spend $13 Billion On US Real Estate In 2019

Slashdot - Wed, 02/13/2019 - 20:30
In a blog post today, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said the company is building new data centers and offices and expanding several key locations across the U.S., spending $13 billion this year. CNBC reports: Pichai outlined the plans, which include opening new data centers in Nevada, Ohio, Texas and Nebraska, the first time the company will have infrastructure locations in those states. The company is also doubling its workforce in Virginia, providing greater access to Washington, D.C., with a new office and more data center space, and expanding its New York campus at Hudson Square. Google is showing its willingness to further open its wallet, after a year in which capital spending more than doubled to $25.46 billion. The company didn't say home much each location will cost or provide information on tax incentives from local communities. Pichai said the plans will likely create tens of thousands of construction jobs across Nebraska, Nevada, Ohio, Texas and Virginia, as well as Oklahoma and South Carolina, where the company is expanding existing data centers. Google didn't say how many new jobs the data centers and business offices would create. Pichai also said that the company is adding new office buildings in Texas and Massachusetts, building out more space in Illinois, Wisconsin, Washington state and Georgia, and redeveloping California locations near Los Angeles and in the Bay Area, including the Westside Pavillion and Spruce Goose Hangar.

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Game of Thrones Hacker Worked With US Defector To Hack Air Force Employees of Iran

Slashdot - Wed, 02/13/2019 - 19:50
An anonymous reader quotes a report from ZDNet: The U.S. Department of Justice unsealed today espionage-related charges against a former U.S. Air Force service member who defected to Iran and helped the country's hackers target her former Air Force colleagues. Besides charges and an arrest warrant issued in the name of the former USAF service member, the DOJ also indicted four Iranian hackers who supposedly carried out the cyber-attacks acting on information provided by Witt. The most notable of the four Iranian hackers is Behzad Mesri, who U.S. authorities also charged in November 2017 with hacking HBO, stealing scripts for unaired episodes of season 6 of the hit series Game Of Thrones TV show, and later attempting to extort HBO execs for $6 million. But at the heart of today's indictment stands Monica Elfriede Witt, 39, a former US Air Force counter-intelligence special agent specialized in Middle East operations, who served for the Air Force between 1997 and 2008, and later worked as a DOD contractor until 2010 --including for Booz Allen Hamilton, the same defense company where Edward Snowden worked. [...] The DOJ claims Witt has been working ever since with IRGC hacking units to craft and fine-tune cyber-operations against her former Air Force colleagues, some of whom she knew personally. [...] All the five suspects named in the indictment are still at large, believed to be located in Iran. The DOJ says Witt now goes by the names of Fatemah Zahra or Narges Witt.

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Report: Apple has inked 50% revenue deals with many publishers for News subscription service

9to5Mac - Wed, 02/13/2019 - 19:41

Following a report from The Wall Street Journal yesterday about Apple’s attempts to sign publishers up for its News subscription service, Recode is out today with some more color on the process. According to Recode, Apple has already signed up “many publishers” for the service with a 50-50 revenue split.

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