Tech News Feed

Microsoft's Twitch competitor can remind you to stretch

Engadget - 42 min 57 sec ago
Microsoft's Twitch competitor, Beam, has arrived on Xbox One. And seemingly in an effort to keep streamers healthy, there are a few tools in the back-end to remind folks to do things like eat and stretch. Simply check the "Enable Health Reminders" bo...

The Guardian Interviews Valentina Tereshkova, the First Woman In Space

SlashDot - 1 hour 47 min ago
Oxygen99 writes: The Guardian published an interview today with the first woman in space, Valentina Tereshkova, ahead of her forthcoming exhibition at the London Science Museum. An interesting and informal chat with perhaps the most visible and famous living face of the Soviet space program. Here's an excerpt from the interview: "Over 50 years ago, in 1963, Tereshkova became the first woman to go into space, and it was her parachuting experience that qualified her for selection. She was only 26 when she made her one and only space flight, but that feat has defined the rest of her life. It propelled her into the upper reaches of the Soviet elite, and gave her security for life. That elevation though came at a life-long cost: a treadmill of obligations that has lasted more than half a century. Public speaking, accepting honors, roving the world as a citizen-diplomat, being a very visible part of Soviet, and now Russian, public life, are roles that she continues to fulfill to this day. Hence her visit to London for the opening of a display of artifacts linked to her cosmonaut's life. It is one of a series of UK-Russia collaborations, following the hugely successful Russian space exhibition at the museum last year."

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Domino's delivers pizza in Europe with wheeled drones

Engadget - 1 hour 58 min ago
Domino's has unleashed another set of pizza delivery drones, this time in Germany and the Netherlands. Last year, it worked with Flirtey to drop pizza to customers in New Zealand using unmanned aerial vehicles. For this pilot program, however, it cho...

A rare sighting of a giant octopus reveals its lunch - CNET

CNET News - 2 hours 36 min ago
The seven-armed octopus has been spotted only three times in the last 27 years by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. A new paper reveals that its tentacles were full of an unusual prey.

Unlocked Galaxy S8 preorders start May 9. Here's why it's smart to wait - CNET

CNET News - 3 hours 12 min ago
Commentary: An unlocked Samsung phone might be the better choice.

Police report explains little about Uber's autonomous wreck

Engadget - 3 hours 44 min ago
After one of its self-driving Volvos in Tempe, Arizona was struck by another car, Uber temporarily shut down all autonomous testing in the state and in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. No major injuries resulted and both sites resumed operations early this...

You could soon access Congress' browsing history, for free - CNET

CNET News - 3 hours 47 min ago
Cards Against Humanity creator Max Temkin warns against crowdfunding the purchase of Congress browsing data -- he intends to buy it and make it freely available.

Scientists Discover Way To Transmit Taste of Lemonade Over Internet

SlashDot - Wed, 2017-03-29 23:30
schwit1 quotes a report from VICE: With the use of electrodes and sensors -- and zero lemons -- a group of researchers at the University of Singapore have announced that they can convince you that you're drinking lemonade, even if it's just water. Plus, they can send you a glass of lemonade virtually over the internet. In an experiment that involved 13 tasters, the subjects' taste buds were stimulated using electricity from receiving electrodes; LED lights mimicked a lemony color. Some were convinced that the water they were drinking was, in fact, almost as sour as lemonade. According to researcher Nimesha Ranasinghe, the experiment proved that taste can be shared online: "People are always posting pictures of drinks on social media -- what if you could upload the taste as well? That's the ultimate goal." Each of the subjects was given a tumbler filled with a liquid that was either cloudy white, green, or yellow. They were told to place their tongues on the rim of the tumbler before sipping. Then they took a taste and rated the beverage on appearance and taste. Some of the liquids were plain water and some were lemonade. "We're working on a full virtual cocktail with smell, taste, and color all covered. We want to be able to create any drink." Why would anyone want to drink a virtual lemonade? Advocates of virtual eating say that virtual foods can replace foods that are bad for you, that you may be allergic to, or that you shouldn't eat because of a medical condition.

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Lyft tests a new fixed-route 'Shuttle' service for commuters

Engadget - Wed, 2017-03-29 23:24
Now that shared rides represent a sizable portion of Uber and Lyft's business, both companies have been looking for new ways to expand their offerings while making the whole system more efficient and affordable at the same time. According to TechCrun...

FCC To Halt Expansion of Broadband Subsidies For Poor People

SlashDot - Wed, 2017-03-29 22:05
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai announced today that the FCC will be "dropping its legal defense of a new system for expanding broadband subsidies for poor people, and will not approve applications from companies that want to offer the low-income broadband service," reports Ars Technica. The Lifeline program, which has been around for 32 years and "gives poor people $9.25 a month toward communications services," was voted to be expanded last year under FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler. That expansion will now be halted. Ars Technica reports: Pai's decision won't prevent Lifeline subsidies from being used toward broadband, but it will make it harder for ISPs to gain approval to sell the subsidized plans. Last year's decision enabled the FCC to approve new Lifeline Broadband Providers nationwide so that ISPs would not have to seek approval from each state's government. Nine providers were approved under the new system late in former FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler's term, but Pai rescinded those approvals in February. There are 36 pending applications from ISPs before the commission's Wireline Competition Bureau. However, Pai wrote today, "I do not believe that the Bureau should approve these applications." He argues that only state governments have authority from Congress to approve such applications. When defending his decision to revoke Lifeline approvals for the nine companies, Pai said last month that more than 900 Lifeline providers were not affected. But most of those were apparently offering subsidized telephone service only and not subsidized broadband. Currently, more than 3.5 million Americans are receiving subsidized broadband through Lifeline from 259 eligible providers, Pai said in today's statement. About 99.6 percent of Americans who get subsidized broadband through Lifeline buy it from one of the companies that received certification "through a lawful process," Pai wrote. The remaining 0.4 percent apparently need to switch providers or lose service because of Pai's February decision. Only one ISP had already started providing the subsidized service under the new approval, and it was ordered to notify its customers that they can no longer receive Lifeline discounts. Pai's latest action would prevent new providers from gaining certification in multiple states at once, forcing them to go through each state's approval process separately. Existing providers that want to expand to multiple states would have to complete the same state-by-state process.

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Bioware: Expect 'Mass Effect: Andromeda' support info Tuesday

Engadget - Wed, 2017-03-29 21:42
The latest installment of Mass Effect is here, but so far, Andromeda doesn't look like it's a high point for the series. A Metacritic score in the 70s puts it well below earlier games that all rate in the 90s, as concerns have been raised over facial...

3 ways the Samsung Galaxy S8 let us down - CNET

CNET News - Wed, 2017-03-29 21:36
There are many reasons to love Samsung's new phone. But these three things might make you think twice before upgrading.

Verizon To Force 'AppFlash' Spyware On Android Phones

SlashDot - Wed, 2017-03-29 21:25
saccade.com writes: Verizon is joining with the creators of a tool called "Evie Launcher" to make a new app search/launcher tool called AppFlash, which will be installed on all Verizon phones running Android. The app provides no functionality to users beyond what Google Search does. It does, however, give Verizon a steady stream of metrics on your app usage and searches. A quick glance at the AppFlash privacy policy confirms this is the real purpose behind it: "We collect information about your device and your use of the AppFlash services. This information includes your mobile number, device identifiers, device type and operating system, and information about the AppFlash features and services you use and your interactions with them. We also access information about the list of apps you have on your device. [...] AppFlash information may be shared within the Verizon family of companies, including companies like AOL who may use it to help provide more relevant advertising within the AppFlash experiences and in other places, including non-Verizon sites, services and devices."

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Motion-tracking projector puts a laser show on moving faces

Engadget - Wed, 2017-03-29 21:09
The combination of face-mapping and video projections makes for a trippy experience. The technology transforms the human face into a canvas for digital art. When a bright red lightning bolt appeared on Lady Gaga's face during her David Bowie tribute...

FCC gives states control of broadband subsidies for the poor - CNET

CNET News - Wed, 2017-03-29 20:53
Donald Trump's FCC chairman Ajit Pai is rolling back rules that will make it harder for broadband companies to offer subsidized internet service to poor Americans.

The 'Von Doom' that came to fan films - CNET

CNET News - Wed, 2017-03-29 20:46
An indie filmmaker spent the past year making a Doctor Doom origin story fan film, and he's given us a very detailed look into his process.

Westinghouse Files For Bankruptcy, In Blow To Nuclear Power

SlashDot - Wed, 2017-03-29 20:45
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Reuters: Westinghouse Electric Co, a unit of Japanese conglomerate Toshiba Corp, filed for bankruptcy on Wednesday, hit by billions of dollars of cost overruns at four nuclear reactors under construction in the U.S. Southeast. The bankruptcy casts doubt on the future of the first new U.S. nuclear power plants in three decades, which were scheduled to begin producing power as soon as this week, but are now years behind schedule. The four reactors are part of two projects known as V.C. Summer in South Carolina, which is majority owned by SCANA Corp, and Vogtle in Georgia, which is owned by a group of utilities led by Southern Co. Costs for the projects have soared due to increased safety demands by U.S. regulators, and also due to significantly higher-than-anticipated costs for labor, equipment and components. Pittsburgh-based Westinghouse said it hopes to use bankruptcy to isolate and reorganize around its "very profitable" nuclear fuel and power plant servicing businesses from its money-losing construction operation. Westinghouse said in a court filing it has secured $800 million in financing from Apollo Investment Corp, an affiliate of Apollo Global Management, to fund its core businesses during its reorganization. Westinghouse's nuclear services business is expected to continue to perform profitably over the course of the bankruptcy and eventually be sold by Toshiba, people familiar with the matter said. When regulators in Georgia and South Carolina approved the construction of Westinghouse's AP1000 reactors in 2009, it was meant to be the start of renewed push to develop U.S. nuclear power. However, a flood of cheap natural gas from shale, the lack of U.S. legislation to curb carbon emissions and the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident in Japan dampened enthusiasm for nuclear power. Toshiba had acquired Westinghouse in 2006 for $5.4 billion. It expected to build dozens of its new AP1000 reactors -- which were hailed as safer, quicker to construct and more compact -- creating a pipeline of work for its maintenance division.

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Latest Tesla patch enables Autosteer at 90 mph for HW2 models

Engadget - Wed, 2017-03-29 20:17
The new Autopilot features have been lurking in Tesla's latest electric vehicles for a few months and now they're ready to go live. For HW2 vehicles we're talking things like the Lane Departure Warning system, Autosteer at much higher speeds (90mph v...

Hobbyist Turns Nintendo 64 Console Into Nintendo Switch Dock

SlashDot - Wed, 2017-03-29 20:05
adosch writes: Polygon reports that a Reddit user "modified a broken Nintendo 64 and transformed it into a functioning Switch dock." The modder, who goes by the handle "Tettzan Zone," has "been keeping fellow Switch fans updated on his adventures in console customization on Reddit, sharing the steps he took to making the entire Nintendo 64 workable as a dock." The original post about full mod details can be found here.

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Mercedes steps up its electric car production plans

Engadget - Wed, 2017-03-29 19:29
When Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler unveiled plans to have at least six electric cars on the market within a decade, it was clearly being conservative. The automaker has announced that it's accelerating those plans, with over 10 EVs on the road by 202...

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