Trump administration “looking into” ban on TikTok, other Chinese apps

A stand of TikTok (Douyin) at The First International Artificial Products Expo Hangzhou on October 18, 2019, in Hangzhou, China.

Enlarge / A stand of TikTok (Douyin) at The First International Artificial Products Expo Hangzhou on October 18, 2019, in Hangzhou, China. (credit: Long Wei | VCG | Getty Images)

The Trump administration is considering banning Chinese social media apps inside the United States, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday. The ban would start with popular short-video platform TikTok.

“We’re taking this very seriously. We’re certainly looking at [TikTok],” Pompeo said during a televised interview with Fox News. He directly and explicitly linked the considered ban on TikTok and other apps to the administration’s actions against other Chinese tech firms.

“We’ve worked on this very issue for a long time, whether it was the problems of having Huawei technology in your infrastructure, we’ve gone all over the world and we’re making real progress getting that out,” he said. “We declared ZTE a danger to American national security, we’ve done all of these things. With respect to the Chinese apps on people’s cell phones I can assure you the United States will get this one right. I don’t want to get out in front of the president, but it’s something we’re looking at.”

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Source: Ars Technica – Trump administration “looking into” ban on TikTok, other Chinese apps

Bungie Just Made Destiny 2 Raids More Rewarding (For The Next Three Months)

Raids are some of the hardest but most rewarding parts of Destiny 2. If you’ve spent any amount of time playing the game you really owe it to yourself to see what these six-player missions have to offer, especially since some of them won’t be around for much longer.

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Source: Kotaku – Bungie Just Made Destiny 2 Raids More Rewarding (For The Next Three Months)

Charles Chiang, President and CEO of MSI, Passes Away at 56

It is on a sad note that we are learning that MSI’s President and CEO, Charles Chiang, has passed away. Charles took the role of CEO a little over a year ago in January 2019, having headed up the massive success of MSI’s Desktop Platform Business Division and the growth in the companies Gaming branding and laser focus these past few years.


Charles had been part of MSI’s life for over 20 years; I have had the pleasure of meeting with him quite frequently in my trips to Taiwan and Computex, as well as an extensive HQ tour when MSI’s gaming brand was first starting – we discussed the upcoming emergence of virtual reality and how MSI wanted to create the world’s first VR-ready notebook. Charles always had time to listen to my industry ramblings, and was always keen to showcase how he perceived the industry with his decades of insight. He will be missed.


Going for Gaming: An Interview with MSI VP Charles Chiang on Gaming and Strategy


The following statement was given to Tom’s Hardware from MSI:


“Earlier today, MSI GM and CEO Charles Chiang passed away. Having been a part of the company for more than 20 years, he made outstanding contributions and was admired by his colleagues. Mr. Chiang was a respected leader in the MSI family, and helped pave the way for the brand’s success. We are all deeply saddened by the news, and are mourning the loss of Mr. Chiang. He will be deeply missed by the entire team.”


Our condolences go out to his family and to MSI.



Source: AnandTech – Charles Chiang, President and CEO of MSI, Passes Away at 56

Trump “officially” takes US out of WHO, but withdrawal is a year-long process

A stethoscope being used on a small globe.

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Westend61)

The Trump administration has officially withdrawn the United States from the World Health Organization, according to a Democratic senator and multiple news reports. But the withdrawal process will take a year, so Trump may not be able to see it through.

“Congress received notification that POTUS officially withdrew the US from the WHO in the midst of a pandemic,” Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) wrote on Twitter today. “To call Trump’s response to COVID chaotic and incoherent doesn’t do it justice. This won’t protect American lives or interests—it leaves Americans sick and America alone.”

According to The Hill, a senior Trump administration official confirmed today that “the White House has officially moved to withdraw the United States from the World Health Organization.”

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Source: Ars Technica – Trump “officially” takes US out of WHO, but withdrawal is a year-long process

When and How to Report Sexual Harassment at Work

When you start a new job, you’ll probably be instructed to go to Human Resources (HR) if you ever experience any sort of harassment at work—but this path hasn’t always been the most useful for employees. In fact, according to a new survey from Zenefits, one out of five workers do not trust their HR departments, and…

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Source: LifeHacker – When and How to Report Sexual Harassment at Work

The Movement for Black Lives and Environmentalists Are Finding Common Ground

The Movement for Black Lives (M4BL) and the environmental movement have not always walked side by side. However, that tide is slowly shifting. This much-needed unity has never been more clear than in the M4BL’s release of the BREATHE Act, a suite of policy proposals, on Tuesday.

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Source: Gizmodo – The Movement for Black Lives and Environmentalists Are Finding Common Ground

AMD’s Ryzen 3000XT CPU refresh is here—benchmarks inside

AMD’s Ryzen 3000XT CPU refresh is here—benchmarks inside

Enlarge (credit: Jim Salter)

Specs at a glance: Ryzen 3000XT CPUs, as tested
OS Windows 10 Professional
CPU Ryzen 9 3900XT (12c/24t)—$499 at Amazon
Ryzen 7 3800XT (8c/16t)—$399 at Amazon
Ryzen 5 3600XT (6c/12t)—$249 at Amazon
RAM 32GB Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB DDR4 3200—$200 at Amazon
GPU MSI GeForce 2060 RTX Super—$450 at Amazon
HDD Samsung 860 Pro 1TB SSD—$275 at Amazon
Motherboard ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero (Wi-Fi)—$550 at Amazon
Cooling NZXT Kraken X63 fluid cooler with 280mm radiator—$150 at Amazon
PSU EVGA 850GQ Semi Modular PSU—$130 at Amazon
Chassis  Primochill Praxis Wetbench test chassis—$200 at Amazon
Price as tested ≈$1,795 as tested, excluding CPU

Today, AMD released three new Ryzen 3000 desktop processors—the Ryzen 3000XT line. These new CPU models, the Ryzen 9 3900XT, Ryzen 7 3800XT, and Ryzen 5 3600XT are minor refreshes of the existing Ryzen 9 3900X, Ryzen 7 3800X, and Ryzen 5 3600X models which add a couple hundred MHz extra boost clock speed to the original versions.

We’ll go ahead and spoiler this one for you right away—if you’ve already got a Ryzen 3000 X-series desktop CPU, you don’t need to rush out to buy a new one. These updates should be seen largely as a way to keep pressure on Intel while AMD is ahead, rather than something revolutionary.

If you’re already in the market for a new CPU and want the top performer in your bracket, you probably want the XT model. PC builders looking for a better value per dollar may want to watch for the X-series CPUs to drop a few dollars, instead—none of the performance improvements brought in XT are overwhelming.

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Source: Ars Technica – AMD’s Ryzen 3000XT CPU refresh is here—benchmarks inside

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 to easily. If you’re like me and have been using the Control Panel for decades, getting accustomed to this feature will be as arduous as unlearning a bad habit. To be fair, it’s a bit redundant to have information on your system’s specs located in three different places, not to mention all three don’t show the exact same information. Currently, Windows 10 users can access hardware information about their PC in several places, but the main ways are: Control Panel > System and Security > System, and Settings > System > About, or by typing ‘system information’ into the search bar.

System and About show nearly the same info, what processor you have and how much RAM you have installed, for instance, except About will show you what version of Windows you have. System Information shows more detailed information about your PC, including your motherboard, GPU, and other hardware. Microsoft is trying to centralize this information, and moving forward, it seems likely that Control Panel will be killed off entirely.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.



Source: Slashdot – Microsoft Will Axe Control Panel From Windows 10

One-Of-A-Kind Action RPG CrossCode Is Out On Consoles This Week

In October of 2018 I fell in love with CrossCode, a solo PC action RPG disguised as a retro 2D fantasy MMO. I put it on my top games of 2018 list, where Jason Schreier saw it, played it, and fell in love as well. On Thursday CrossCode finally comes out for consoles. Now everybody can love it. Heck, I’m loving it all…

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Source: Kotaku – One-Of-A-Kind Action RPG CrossCode Is Out On Consoles This Week

Look Up Past Race Results to Compete With People in Your Age Group

Comparing yourself to others can be a dangerous thing, but it’s also motivating if you choose your comparisons carefully. I keep seeing people, especially new runners, complain that they’re “slow” or wonder how far away they are from the “average” runner.

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Source: LifeHacker – Look Up Past Race Results to Compete With People in Your Age Group

Deepcool Releases Castle 280EX AIO CPU Cooler

Further expanding its ever-growing list of CPU coolers, Deepcool has announced its new Castle 280EX AIO CPU cooler, a closed loop liquid cooler with a 280 mm radiator. Slotting in between the pre-existing Castle 240EX and 360EX, the 280EX is designed to improve options for users looking for an RGB-infused cooler with a grey cylindrical CPU block.


The Deepcool Castle EX series is designed with a 3-phase motor intended to improve flow rate and overall cooling performance, but with less operating noise. The latest in the Castle EX range is the 280EX, which uses a 280 mm radiator that’s paired with a black sprayed aluminium core, and comes supplied with a pair of 140 mm 400-1600 rpm cooling fans. The new cooler supports all the usual socket types, including Intel’s LGA20XX, LGA 1200 and LGA 115x sockets, as well as AMD’s TRX40/TR4 and AM4 sockets.



One of the Deepcool Castle 280EX’s main design traits comes via the CPU block and pump, with a swappable logo plate which allows users to choose between Deepcool’s Gamerstorm emblem or a ying-yang symbol. Integrated into the rather bulky looking pump and block is some addressable RGB LED lighting which can be customized through a 3-pin ARGB motherboard header, or with an included RGB controller in the accessories bundle.


The cooling plate is made from copper for effective heat dissipation, and Deepcool has opted for a larger design with 25% more skived fins, although Deepcool doesn’t state which model it is using as a comparison. The larger plate allows better support for the sizable AMD TR4 socket, which has a much larger IHS than smaller processors such as the AMD’s Ryzen 3000 series.


The Deepcool Castle 280EX has an MSRP of $150 and is currently available to buy at Amazon. For reference, the larger Castle 360EX is presently available for $158, while the smallest of the now completed trio, the 240EX with 240 mm radiator can be purchased for $130.


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Source: AnandTech – Deepcool Releases Castle 280EX AIO CPU Cooler

Studio Ghibli's First Full CG Movie Will Come to the U.S. Next Year

You won’t have to wait all that long to see Studio Ghibli’s first crack at an entirely 3D CG feature. Shortly after its debut in Japan later this year, GKids will be bringing Earwig and the Witch to American theaters in early 2021—well, if they’re open, hopefully.

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Source: io9 – Studio Ghibli’s First Full CG Movie Will Come to the U.S. Next Year

What to Do if You Can't Pay Your Taxes Next Week

It’s official: Taxes are due next week. Back in March, the government pushed the filing deadline to July 15, and the Treasury Department recently confirmed they won’t be moving it again. If you have been putting it off, now is the time to file your tax return and pay what you owe.

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Source: LifeHacker – What to Do if You Can’t Pay Your Taxes Next Week

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 originally planned to unveil Walmart+ in late March or April, Recode reported in February, but the retailer pushed back the launch date after the Covid-19 pandemic began sweeping across the US in March. It’s unclear whether the program will launch nationally, or first on a regional level, later this month.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.



Source: Slashdot – Walmart’s Amazon Prime Competitor Will Launch This Month

Grab A 50-Inch Toshiba 4K Fire TV And Free Echo Dot For Just $329 With This Deal

Grab A 50-Inch Toshiba 4K Fire TV And Free Echo Dot For Just $329 With This Deal
Around the country, there are still a lot of people who are spending more time at home than usual because of the coronavirus and shutdowns in various communities. That means many active people who are typically out enjoying life are stuck indoors watching movies and TV more than normal. This has led to many people looking for a TV upgrade,

Source: Hot Hardware – Grab A 50-Inch Toshiba 4K Fire TV And Free Echo Dot For Just 9 With This Deal

Does First Amendment let ISPs sell Web-browsing data? Judge is skeptical

Illustration of a padlock over a computer-chip circuit board.

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Yuichiro Chino)

The broadband industry has lost a key initial ruling in its bid to kill a privacy law imposed by the state of Maine.

The top lobby groups representing cable companies, mobile carriers, and telecoms sued Maine in February, claiming the privacy law violates their First Amendment protections on free speech and that the state law is preempted by deregulatory actions taken by Congress and the Federal Communications Commission. Maine’s Web-browsing privacy law is similar to the one killed by Congress and President Donald Trump in 2017, as it prohibits ISPs from using, disclosing, or selling browsing history and other personal information without customers’ opt-in consent. The law took effect on July 1, 2020.

The case is not over, but the ruling today by Judge Lance Walker in US District Court for the District of Maine dealt a major blow to the broadband industry’s lawsuit. The plaintiffs representing the broadband industry are America’s Communications Association, CTIA, NCTA, and USTelecom. Walker denied the plaintiffs’ motion for judgment on the pleadings, criticized the industry’s First Amendment argument, and granted Maine’s motion to dismiss claims that the state law is preempted by federal law.

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Source: Ars Technica – Does First Amendment let ISPs sell Web-browsing data? Judge is skeptical

Major Movie Theater Chains Sue New Jersey For 'Unconstitutional' Pandemic Closures

Movie theater giants AMC, Cinemark, and Regal filed a lawsuit yesterday against the state of New Jersey for forcing them to keep their businesses closed during the covid-19 pandemic, yet allowing churches and other places of assembly to remain open. Spotted by The Hollywood Reporter, the theater chains have called the…

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Source: Gizmodo – Major Movie Theater Chains Sue New Jersey For ‘Unconstitutional’ Pandemic Closures