BP plans to cut oil production 40 percent by 2030

BP plans to cut oil production 40 percent by 2030

Enlarge (credit: b k)

In February, BP announced a pledge to (mostly) reach net-zero CO­2­ emissions by 2050, a noteworthy change of course steered by new CEO Bernard Looney. BP had long dabbled in promoting an interest in greener pursuits, but these promises pointed toward a more serious shift.

On Monday, the company released some specifics for the coming decade, describing “a new strategy that will reshape [BP’s] business as it pivots from being an international oil company focused on producing resources to an integrated energy company focused on delivering solutions for customers.” The new details are focused on investors, as the plan involves about a 50-percent reduction in dividends for shareholders. That money will instead go to paying down debts—partly a response to the economic consequences of COVID-19—as well as funding some of the planned investments.

BP says it will increase investment in “low carbon energy” from $500 million to around $5 billion per year by 2030. That includes building renewable electricity generation reaching 50 gigawatts in capacity, as well as pushing into the nascent hydrogen, biofuel, and carbon capture industries. It also includes betting on the electric vehicle charging business, with a goal of expanding from the current 7,500 charging points to over 70,000.

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Source: Ars Technica – BP plans to cut oil production 40 percent by 2030

Common Cold Coronaviruses Might Prime the Immune System to Recognize SARS-CoV-2

A group of scientists think they’re closer to understanding why some people’s immune systems seem to recognize the coronavirus that causes covid-19, despite the person never having been infected by it. The team’s new research released Monday suggests that past infections with much milder but related coronaviruses that…

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Source: Gizmodo – Common Cold Coronaviruses Might Prime the Immune System to Recognize SARS-CoV-2

How to create compressed encrypted archives with tar and gpg

There are many reasons why you may want to create compressed encrypted file archives. You may want to create an encrypted backup of your personal files. Another possible scenario is that you may want to privately share content with a friend or colleague over the web or through cloud storage. Tar.gz files, or compressed tarballs, are created using the tar command. These tarballs are pretty much the standard go-to format for archives on GNU/Linux, however they are not encrypted. In the above scenarios that we mentioned it is often desirable to have encryption in order to secure your data. This is where gpg comes in.

Source: LXer – How to create compressed encrypted archives with tar and gpg

Security flaw in Twitter Android app might have exposed Direct Messages

Twitter acknowledged today that there was a security vulnerability in its Android app that would have exposed private data such as Direct Messages (via CNBC). The issue is now fixed and is related to an underlying Android OS security issue that only…

Source: Engadget – Security flaw in Twitter Android app might have exposed Direct Messages

How to Help People in Beirut After the Deadly Explosion

As the search for survivors of yesterday’s explosion in Beirut continues, at this point we know that it left more than 100 people dead and thousands of others injured. The blast happened near the Lebanese capital’s port, though it could be felt from more than 150 miles away in Cyprus, the New York Times reports.

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Source: LifeHacker – How to Help People in Beirut After the Deadly Explosion

Intel's Clear Linux Still Outperforming Other Distributions For Mid-2020

Being well past the half-way point for the year, here is a look at how Intel’s performance-optimized Clear Linux distribution is performing compared to its rolling state last December. Plus there are also benchmarks looking at how the current Clear Linux is performing against other rolling-release distributions.

Source: Phoronix – Intel’s Clear Linux Still Outperforming Other Distributions For Mid-2020

Apple and Google's COVID-19 Tracking System Will Make Its Full US Debut in New Virginia App

This week, Virginia plans to release a COVID-19 exposure notification app based on the specifications published by Apple and Google in April. From a report: The app, called COVIDWISE, is the first fully deployed implementation of Apple and Google’s system in the US and was beta tested by the state department of health. The specification is designed to preserve patient privacy, particularly around their location and whether they have tested positive for COVID-19. “No location data or personal information is ever collected, stored or transmitted to VDH as part of the app,” a health department official told Virginia Public Media, which first reported the news. “You can delete the app or turn off exposure notifications at any time.”

If someone tests positive for the coronavirus, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) will give them a PIN number that they can choose to use to report that result within the app. Then, other users of the app should get a notification if their phones were near the sick person at some point in the past 14 days. However, those notifications will only go out to phones when the exposure met a threshold for a strength and duration of the Bluetooth signal that can be estimated as a user being within six feet of the other user for 15 minutes (based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s definition of “close contact”).

Read more of this story at Slashdot.



Source: Slashdot – Apple and Google’s COVID-19 Tracking System Will Make Its Full US Debut in New Virginia App

Horizon Zero Dawn on PC: Not the optimized port we were hoping for

In still-image form, <em>Horizon Zero Dawn</em> sure is a looker on PC. But it's a video game, not a slideshow, and that brings us to some bad news.

Enlarge / In still-image form, Horizon Zero Dawn sure is a looker on PC. But it’s a video game, not a slideshow, and that brings us to some bad news. (credit: Sony Interactive Entertainment)

Horizon Zero Dawn was an easy Ars pick for one of 2017’s top five video games, but a certain subset of our readers disagreed. This was due almost entirely to the game’s PS4 exclusivity. Never mind that its developer, Guerrilla Games, is a wholly owned Sony subsidiary; we want it on PC, our readers declared.

Historically, Sony Interactive Entertainment (not to be confused with other Sony publishing arms) has been cagey about letting its PlayStation exclusives land elsewhere, but the past couple of years has seen that stance shift, with games like Heavy Rain and Death Stranding making their PC debuts. Death Stranding stands out as a particularly impressive example of a console game’s PC port gone right.

I remarked at the time that DS‘ PC version was good news for HZD, mostly because they share the same underlying tech, Guerrilla’s Decima Engine. But today, two days before HZD‘s “complete” edition lands on Steam for $50, I’m here to report that their shared tech hasn’t been paid forward with identical PC-version results.

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Source: Ars Technica – Horizon Zero Dawn on PC: Not the optimized port we were hoping for

Samsung Announces Galaxy Z Fold 2: Second-Generation Foldable

Alongside the new Note20 series smartphones, Samsung is today pre-announcing the brand-new Galaxy Z Fold 2, the successor to last year’s quite controversial Galaxy Fold smartphone, a device which had been marred by manufacturing defects and delays. Today’s coverage of the Z Fold 2 isn’t an actual launch, but rather a pre-announcement ahead of the device’s proper debut in September. Today’s coverage mainly divulges the new phone’s design, with Samsung talking about how they have improved the folding mechanism of the phone and solve some of last year’s issues.



Source: AnandTech – Samsung Announces Galaxy Z Fold 2: Second-Generation Foldable

Samsung's Galaxy Z Fold 2 Gets Official With Larger 120Hz Primary Display And Snapdragon 865+

Samsung's Galaxy Z Fold 2 Gets Official With Larger 120Hz Primary Display And Snapdragon 865+
Samsung has officially announced its true, powerhouse flagship smartphone. No, we’re not talking about the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, but rather the Galaxy Z Fold 2. This is the follow-up to last year’s problem-prone Galaxy Fold, and Samsung is hoping to make a bigger splash in the folding smartphone with improved specifications and useful improvements.

For

Source: Hot Hardware – Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 2 Gets Official With Larger 120Hz Primary Display And Snapdragon 865+

Ex-Googler Levandowski gets 18 months in prison for trade-secret theft

Anthony Levandowski walking to a courthouse while holding a cardboard box.

Enlarge / Anthony Levandowski arrives for a court appearance at the Phillip Burton Federal Building and US Courthouse on November 13, 2019 in San Francisco, California. (credit: Getty Images | Justin Sullivan )

Ex-Google engineer Anthony Levandowski yesterday was sentenced to 18 months in prison following his March guilty plea for stealing a confidential document related to Google’s self-driving technology.

Levandowski’s lawyers last week asked a judge in US District Court for the Northern District of California to let him off without any prison time, arguing that a year of home confinement, a fine, restitution, and community service would be sufficient punishment. The federal government asked for a 27-month prison sentence.

While handing down the 18-month sentence, US District Judge William Alsup said that a sentence without imprisonment would give “a green light to every future brilliant engineer to steal trade secrets,” according to a Reuters report. Levandowski was originally charged with 33 counts of stealing trade secrets by downloading thousands of documents to his personal laptop in December 2015 shortly before he left Google to work on his startup, Otto, which was acquired by Uber for a reported $680 million in August 2016. In a plea deal, Levandowksi admitted to stealing one document called “Chauffeur TL weekly updates,” which tracked the progress of Google’s “Project Chauffeur” that later became Waymo. Prosecutors dropped the other charges.

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Source: Ars Technica – Ex-Googler Levandowski gets 18 months in prison for trade-secret theft

Just Remember That the Original Mulan Is Perfect

Disney announced recently that the live-action remake of Mulan will now be available to Disney+ subscribers on September 4 in lieu of a theatrical release. The movie will cost $29.99 to rent, on top of the $6.99 it already costs to subscribe to the service. This is well and good for Disney, a company that is certainly…

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Source: io9 – Just Remember That the Original Mulan Is Perfect

DC Weaponizes John Williams' Superman Theme to Hype Its FanDome Event

How do you advertise a virtual convention that people can’t actually attend outside of clicking a link in their browsers? Well, for DC Entertainment, it apparently involves an oddly haunting deployment of classic John Williams music and some incredibly creepy CG people.

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Source: io9 – DC Weaponizes John Williams’ Superman Theme to Hype Its FanDome Event

How to Ask Someone to Be a Job Reference

Despite how much has changed in terms of how we search for jobs (we’ve come a long way from paging through the local newspaper’s classified ads section) and the hiring process now being largely virtual, there’s one practice that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere: having to provide references.

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Source: LifeHacker – How to Ask Someone to Be a Job Reference

Big Nurse gets her origin story in trailer for prequel series Ratched

Sarah Paulson plays Nurse Mildred Ratched in Netflix’s prequel to One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.

Fans of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest—whether Ken Kesey’s 1962 novel or the 1975 Oscar-winning film starring Jack Nicholson—know that the sadistic, tyrannical Nurse Ratched is a crucial antagonist driving the story of a rebellious inmate in a psychiatric hospital. Now she’s getting her own back story in the form of a new prequel series, Ratched. Netflix dropped the first trailer for the series yesterday.

(Spoilers for One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest book and film below.)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is set in a psychiatric hospital in Salem, Oregon, where Randle Patrick McMurphy is sent after faking insanity to escape a prison farm sentence. Nurse Ratched (aka Big Nurse) rules the place with an iron hand, systematically abusing the inmates under her charge. She maintains order by withholding basic necessities, medications, or patient privileges, but McMurphy’s rebellious nature challenges her authority, even in the face of shock therapy.

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Source: Ars Technica – Big Nurse gets her origin story in trailer for prequel series Ratched

UCLA Researchers Will Use Apple Gadgets in Study to Detect and Treat Depression

Identifying depression can be a tricky beast. However, UCLA researchers are collaborating with Apple in a three-year study to see if gadgets can help revolutionize how depression is detected and treated.

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Source: Gizmodo – UCLA Researchers Will Use Apple Gadgets in Study to Detect and Treat Depression

[$] "Structural pattern matching" for Python, part 1

We last looked at the idea of a Python
“match” or “switch” statement back in 2016, but it is something that has
been circulating in the Python community both before and since that coverage.
In June it was raised again, with a Python Enhancement Proposal (PEP)
supporting it: PEP 622
(“Structural Pattern Matching“). As that title would imply, the
match statement proposed in the PEP is actually a pattern-matching
construct with many uses.
While it may superficially resemble the C switch statement, a
Python match would do far more than simply choose a chunk of code
to execute based on the value of an expression.

Source: LWN.net – [$] “Structural pattern matching” for Python, part 1