Meet the small 360 camera module that will fit into phones

You’re probably not aware of this, but a Chinese company dubbed ProTruly has already released the world’s first two smartphones with a built-in 360 camera last December. Don’t worry if you missed the news, because chances are you’d be put off by the…

Source: Engadget – Meet the small 360 camera module that will fit into phones

Canon's full-frame 6D Mark II is a solid upgrade with a catch

Nearly four years after it first launched its original EOS 6D budget full-frame camera, Canon has unveiled a successor. The EOS 6D Mark II improves on the past model in nearly every way, offering more connection options, resolution, much faster autof…

Source: Engadget – Canon’s full-frame 6D Mark II is a solid upgrade with a catch

Canon's lightweight Rebel SL2 has a much-improved sensor

If you prefer a DSLR’s true optical finder to the EVF of a mirrorless, but don’t want to lug a heavy camera, there aren’t many options. Canon does have one worthy of consideration, however: the EOS Rebel SL2. It replaces the four-year-old Rebel SL1 a…

Source: Engadget – Canon’s lightweight Rebel SL2 has a much-improved sensor

Canon Might Finally Fix All the Problems In Its Cheapest Full Frame Camera

Canon is finally launching a new full frame camera. The $2000 Canon 6D Mark II is the first ever refresh to Canon’s cheapest full frame camera, the Canon 6D (now Canon 6D Mark I), and it might actually fix all the Mark I’s problems.

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Source: Gizmodo – Canon Might Finally Fix All the Problems In Its Cheapest Full Frame Camera

Eero's new mesh WiFi system packs more power in a pretty package

The first-generation Eero was a game-changer. With a mesh network that blanketed your home in WiFi, it finally offered home wireless that doesn’t suck. It pledged to rid my home of dead spots and, for the most part, it did. Since then, however, Eero…

Source: Engadget – Eero’s new mesh WiFi system packs more power in a pretty package

US seeks more airport security, could expand airplane laptop ban

Enlarge / A passenger places a laptop computer back into his bag after passing through a TSA check point at Salt Lake City International Airport. (credit: George Frey/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

In a speech today, Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly said that airlines that don’t get on board with new security procedures could see electronic devices banned on their airplanes—or be barred from flying the US altogether.

The Department of Homeland Security today said it will be demanding “enhanced security measures” for all commercial flights going into the US. The specific measures, which will be both “seen and unseen,” aren’t specified in a DHS fact sheet, but they generally include enhanced passenger screening, “heightened screening of personal electronic devices,” and “deploying advanced technology, expanding canine screening, and establishing additional pre-clearance locations.”

The new measures will affect 105 countries hosting approximately 280 airports, 180 airlines, and about 2,100 daily flights carrying 325,000 US-bound passengers.

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Source: Ars Technica – US seeks more airport security, could expand airplane laptop ban

Mayors of 7,400 Cities Vow To Meet Obama's Climate Commitments

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: Mayors of more than 7,400 cities across the world have vowed that Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris accord will spur greater local efforts to combat climate change. At the first meeting of a “global covenant of mayors,” city leaders from across the US, Europe and elsewhere pledged to work together to keep to the commitments made by Barack Obama two years ago. Cities will devise a standard measurement of emission reductions to help them monitor their progress. They will also share ideas for delivering carbon-free transport and housing. Kassim Reed, the mayor of Atlanta, told reporters he had travelled to Europe to “send a signal” that US states and cities would execute the policies Obama committed to, whether the current White House occupants agreed or not. Reed, whose administration has promised that the city of Atlanta will use 100% renewable energy by 2035, said 75% of the US population and GDP lay in urban areas, where local leaders were committed to fighting climate change. “We have the ability to still achieve between 35% and 45% CO2 emission reductions without the involvement of the national government and it is why I chose to be here at this time to send a signal to 7,400 cities around the world that now should be a time of optimism, passion and action,” he said.

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Source: Slashdot – Mayors of 7,400 Cities Vow To Meet Obama’s Climate Commitments

Draft defense bill would ban Kaspersky's security software

American officials are worried that Russian software could be used to compromise national security, and they aren’t taking any chances. A draft version of the Senate’s National Defense Authorization Act, which greenlights military funding, explicitl…

Source: Engadget – Draft defense bill would ban Kaspersky’s security software

The TSA Messed With the Wrong 20-Pound Lobster and Its Owner Is Pissed

“They are dumb,” Christopher Stracuzza tells the New York Times. “They are like the dumbest people in the world.” They, in this case, are the TSA agents who manhandled his gigantic lobster and went viral with a photo on the agency’s Twitter account.

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Source: Gizmodo – The TSA Messed With the Wrong 20-Pound Lobster and Its Owner Is Pissed

Elon Musk's 'Godot' machine cuts its first LA tunnel segment

SpaceX and Tesla founder Elon Musk just tweeted that his tunnel-carving operation, The Boring Company, just completed cutting out its first segment with its Beckett-homaging drill, Godot. While the plan is to build an entire subterranean network unde…

Source: Engadget – Elon Musk’s ‘Godot’ machine cuts its first LA tunnel segment

The Oldest Known Porno Movie Prominently Features A Car

Long before everyone had machines on their desks, laps, and in their pockets capable of providing them with pornography from a global pornography-distribution network, people had to distribute hardcore pornography on celluloid film, like animals. The earliest example seems to be a 1915 movie that revolves around a car.

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Source: Gizmodo – The Oldest Known Porno Movie Prominently Features A Car

Micron Discontinues Lexar Business, Plans to Focus on Higher-Margin Products

Micron this week announced plans to discontinue its Lexar removable media storage business as a part of the company’s strategy to shift to higher margin NAND flash-based products. The company intends to sell all or part of its Lexar business division, but promises to support existing customers during the transition period.


Lexar was spun off from Cirrus Logic in 1996 and then acquired by Micron in 2006 in a bid to market NAND flash media. Approximately two years ago, Micron cut down supply of NAND memory to spot market in a bid to concentrate on building its own products and thus earn higher profit margins. Last year the company announced plans to work with its clients to build software for their software storage offerings to improve its profit margins further this time from various SSDs. In addition, the company disclosed plans to develop special memory solutions for emerging automotive applications (which will complement its embedded portfolio). This week Micron went even further and disclosed plans to cease selling Lexar branded products to consumers and OEMs as a part of its strategy to increase “opportunities in higher value markets and channels.” The portfolio of Lexar products includes memory cards and card readers, USB flash drives and even SSDs.


Given the competition on the market of retail removable media and storage drives, the withdrawal from such businesses may be logical for Micron, which feels increasing pressure from Samsung, Western Digital (SanDisk) and others amid lack of market growth in terms of NAND bits (at least, according to its own predictions). Meanwhile, the withdrawal also means that Micron will have to concentrate on production of SSD-graded memory, whereas NAND for removable storage will be sold on the open market, in case the company continues to develop it. If someone buys the Lexar operations from Micron, the latter will likely sign some kind of exclusive supply agreement with the new owner, which means that it will keep developing the aforementioned NAND. SSD-graded memory is more expensive than chips for memory cards or USB flash drives and for about a year Micron was the only company to sell its SSD-graded 3D NAND to third-party makers of drives, possibly earning higher margin than by selling removable storage devices. However, NAND for the latter is typically used to test drive new production technologies and/or architectures before deploying them to make memory for SSDs.



Micron will not be the only producer of NAND flash, which does not produce its own memory cards and USB flash drives. SK Hynix and Intel also do not produce such products under their own trademarks, unlike Samsung, Toshiba and Western Digital. That said, while it will be sad to see Micron’s Lexar gone (assuming that nobody buys it), Micron’s withdrawal from removable storage business is not exactly surprising.


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Source: AnandTech – Micron Discontinues Lexar Business, Plans to Focus on Higher-Margin Products

London Metropolitan Police's 18,000 Windows XP PCs Is a Disaster Waiting To Happen

According to MSPoweruser, the London Metropolitan Police are still using around 18,000 PCs powered by Windows XP, an operating system Microsoft stopped supporting in 2014. What’s more is that the police force is upgrading its PCs from Windows XP to Windows 8.1, instead of Windows 10. Only 8 PCs at the police force are reportedly powered by the “most secure version of Windows right now.” From the report: From the looks of things, the London Metropolitan Police will continue to upgrade their systems to Windows 8.1 at the moment. Windows 8.1 is still being supported by Microsoft, although the mainstream support for the OS is set to end on the 9 January 2018. Microsoft will offer extended support for the OS until 2023, which means Windows 8.1 is still a much more secure alternative for the Metropolitan Police than Windows XP. Windows 10 still would have been the best option in terms of security, however. Microsoft is releasing security updates for the OS every month, and the new advanced security features like Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection makes PCs running Windows a whole lot more secure. The spokesman of the 0Conservative London Assembly said in a statement: “The Met is working towards upgrading its software, but in its current state it’s like a fish swimming in a pool of sharks. It is vital the Met is given the resources to step up its upgrade timeline before we see another cyber-attack with nationwide security implications.”

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Source: Slashdot – London Metropolitan Police’s 18,000 Windows XP PCs Is a Disaster Waiting To Happen

Signal tests changes to how users verify secure contacts

Last November, Signal introduced a few changes to how it manages its safety numbers — the unique code given to each conversation you have on the app. Safety numbers can change because someone gets a new phone and reinstalled the app or because the c…

Source: Engadget – Signal tests changes to how users verify secure contacts

US Lifts Airline Laptop Ban In Exchange For 'Intensive Security Measures'

The Trump administration has kept airlines and nations on edge as it weighed a decision to expand an in-flight ban on electronics larger than a smartphone. On Wednesday, the administration announced that it will not expand the ban, and it will lift be lifted in countries that were already affected. But the terms of…

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Source: Gizmodo – US Lifts Airline Laptop Ban In Exchange For ‘Intensive Security Measures’

Researchers Create New Probiotic Beer That Boosts Immunity

randomErr writes: A new patent has been filed for a innovative brewing technique that incorporates a live strain of good bacteria into the brewing process. Researchers at NUS (National University of Singapore) have created a probiotic sour beer that may boost immunity and improve gut health. The bacteria Lactobacillus paracasei L26 is capable of neutralizing toxins and viruses and regulating the immune system. Chan Mei Zhi Alcine, of the Food Science and Technology Program at NUS said, “While good bacteria are often present in food that have been fermented, there are currently no beers in the market that contain probiotics. Developing sufficient counts of live probiotics in beer is a challenging feat as beers contain hop acids that prevent the growth and survival of probiotics. As a believer of achieving a healthy diet through consuming probiotics, this is a natural choice for me when I picked a topic for my final-year project.”

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Source: Slashdot – Researchers Create New Probiotic Beer That Boosts Immunity

$7.5 billion Kemper power plant suspends coal gasification

Enlarge / Heavy equipment works in the lignite coal mine adjacent to Southern Co.’s Kemper County power plant near Meridian, Mississippi, U.S., on Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014. Photographer: Gary Tramontina/Bloomberg via Getty Images (credit: Getty Images)

Southern Company and Mississippi Power announced Wednesday afternoon that they would suspend all coal gasification operations at a Kemper County plant and simply use natural gas instead. The decision comes after the Mississippi Public Service Commission (MPSC) recommended that the plant burn only natural gas, which is cheaper at the moment.

The plant was supposed to be a cutting-edge demonstration of the power of “clean coal,” and despite running five years late and more than $4 billion over budget, Kemper was able to start testing its coal gasification operations late last year. The plant used a chemical process to break down lignite coal into synthesis gas, or “syngas,” which was then fed into a generator. The syngas burns cleaner than pulverized lignite coal does. In addition, emissions were caught by a carbon capture system and delivered to a nearby oil field to help with oil extraction. That, Southern and Mississippi Power said, would reduce the greenhouse emissions of burning lignite by up to 65 percent.

But with only 200 days of gasification operations under its belt, Kemper identified more issues with its technology, including design flaws that caused leaks and ash buildup. Last week, the MSPC indicated that it would refuse to allow Southern to raise rates to cover Kemper’s continued construction and maintenance for gasification.

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Source: Ars Technica – .5 billion Kemper power plant suspends coal gasification

Real-time tracking and projection mapping keeps getting better

Japanese creative studio P.I.C.S. have set a mindbending new standard for real-time tracking and projection mapping with their latest visual creation, EXISDANCE.

The technology has been around for a while, although it arguably first captured the mai…

Source: Engadget – Real-time tracking and projection mapping keeps getting better

O'Reilly No Longer Selling Individual Books, Videos Online

dovf writes: Just got an email from O’Reilly Media that as of today, they are no longer selling individual books or videos online — rather, they are encouraging people to sign up for Safari. They are continuing to publish books and videos, “and you’ll still be able to buy them at Amazon and other retailers.” They also make it clear that we will not lose access to already-purchased content, updates to such content, etc. More details can be found in the FAQ. No mention, though, of whether the content sold at these other retailers will remain DRM-free… From the FAQ: “You can buy all of the books (ebooks and print) at shop.oreilly.com from Amazon and other digital and bricks-and-mortar retailers. We’re no longer selling individual books and videos via shop.oreilly.com — but we are definitely continuing to publish books and videos on the topics you need to know. And of course, every O’Reilly book and video (including O’Reilly conference sessions) is available instantly on Safari.” The only mention of “DRM” in the FAQ is in regard to what happens to the digital content you have in your account at members.oreilly.com. According to O’Reilly, “Your DRM-free ebooks and videos are safe and sound, and you’ll continue to have free lifetime access to download them anytime, anywhere.”

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Source: Slashdot – O’Reilly No Longer Selling Individual Books, Videos Online

US Imposes Stricter Security Screenings At Foreign Airports, But Won't Expand Laptop Ban Yet

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Verge: The United States will require foreign airports to implement stricter security practices and screenings for any passengers headed to the U.S. John Kelly, the U.S. secretary of Homeland Security, announced today that the new measures were being put in place. Though he didn’t go into specifics, Kelly said the new requirements would include further screenings of electronics, more thorough vetting of passengers, and measures meant to stop “insider attacks.” The U.S. is also encouraging the use of more bomb-detecting dogs, “advanced checkpoint screening technology,” and the addition of “preclearance” locations, which station U.S. customs officers overseas, allowing them to screen passengers before boarding instead of after they land. One thing Kelly didn’t announce was an expansion of the tablet and laptop ban, which is currently in effect on flights from 10 airports in the Middle East and North Africa. If airports don’t comply with the new screening rules, Kelly said, they may be subject to additional electronics bans. But for the time being, it sounds like the ban will be kept to those 10 locations. According to Reuters, airlines have 21 days to comply with the new rules for explosives screenings and four months to comply with everything else.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.



Source: Slashdot – US Imposes Stricter Security Screenings At Foreign Airports, But Won’t Expand Laptop Ban Yet