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Facebook says it will hand over information on Russia-linked ads bought during 2016 election campaign to Congressional investigators (Colin Stretch/Facebook)

TechMeme - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 3:38pm

Colin Stretch / Facebook:
Facebook says it will hand over information on Russia-linked ads bought during 2016 election campaign to Congressional investigators  —  Two weeks ago, we announced we had found more than 3,000 ads addressing social and political issues that ran in the US between 2015 and 2017 and that appear …

Categories: Technology

After Harvey, What Will Happen to Houston’s Oil Industry?

Wired - Top Stories - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 2:46pm
Hurricane Harvey pummeled the country’s energy infrastructure, and there are few incentives in place to promote renewables.
Categories: Open Source, Technology

Corporations Just Quietly Changed How the Web Works

Slashdot - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 2:45pm
Adrianne Jeffries, a reporter at The Outline, writes on W3C's announcement from earlier this week: The trouble with DRM is that it's sort of ineffective. It tends to make things inconvenient for people who legitimately bought a song or movie while failing to stop piracy. Some rights holders, like Ubisoft, have come around to the idea that DRM is counterproductive. Steve Jobs famously wrote about the inanity of DRM in 2007. But other rights holders, like Netflix, are doubling down. The prevailing winds at the consortium concluded that DRM is now a fact of life, and so it would be be better to at least make the experience a bit smoother for users. If the consortium didn't work with companies like Netflix, Berners-Lee wrote in a blog post, those companies would just stop delivering video over the web and force people into their own proprietary apps. The idea that the best stuff on the internet will be hidden behind walls in apps rather than accessible through any browser is the mortal fear for open web lovers; it's like replacing one library with many stores that each only carry books for one publisher. "It is important to support EME as providing a relatively safe online environment in which to watch a movie, as well as the most convenient," Berners-Lee wrote, "and one which makes it a part of the interconnected discourse of humanity." Mozilla, the nonprofit that makes the browser Firefox, similarly held its nose and cooperated on the EME standard. "It doesn't strike the correct balance between protecting individual people and protecting digital content," it said in a blog post. "The content providers require that a key part of the system be closed source, something that goes against Mozilla's fundamental approach. We very much want to see a different system. Unfortunately, Mozilla alone cannot change the industry on DRM at this point."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Open Source, Technology

Judge Kills FTC Lawsuit Against D-Link for Flimsy Security

Slashdot - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 2:05pm
Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint against network equipment vendor D-Link saying inadequate security in the company's wireless routers and internet cameras left consumers open to hackers and privacy violations. The FTC, in a complaint filed in the Northern District of California charged that "D-Link failed to take reasonable steps to secure its routers and Internet Protocol (IP) cameras, potentially compromising sensitive consumer information, including live video and audio feeds from D-Link IP cameras." For its part, D-Link Systems said it "is aware of the complaint filed by the FTC." Fast forward nine months, a judge has dismissed the FTC's case, claiming that the FTC failed to provide enough specific examples of harm done to consumers, or specific instances when the routers in question were breached. From a report: "The FTC does not identify a single incident where a consumer's financial, medical or other sensitive personal information has been accessed, exposed or misused in any way, or whose IP camera has been compromised by unauthorized parties, or who has suffered any harm or even simple annoyance and inconvenience from the alleged security flaws in the [D-Link] devices," wrote the Judge. "The absence of any concrete facts makes it just as possible that [D-Link]'s devices are not likely to substantially harm consumers, and the FTC cannot rely on wholly conclusory allegations about potential injury to tilt the balance in its favor."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Open Source, Technology

The Education of Brett the Robot

Wired - Top Stories - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 1:58pm
A UC Berkeley robot named Brett is learning to interact with its world in a fascinating way.
Categories: Open Source, Technology

Bitcoin Futures-Based ETF Likely To Be Approved in the US

Slashdot - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 1:25pm
The race is on: who will be the first to launch a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund in the United States? From a report, shared by a reader: In Europe, there is already a Bitcoin exchange traded note (ETN) available to investors. In the U.S., it is widely anticipated a Bitcoin ETF will be be approved by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) very soon. In Europe, ETNs are designed to track the movement of Bitcoin against the U.S. dollar. The ETNs are Bitcoin Tracker One, which is traded in Swedish krona and Bitcoin Tracker EURO, which is traded in euro. Both ETNs are issued by XBT Provider AB and traded on Nasdaq OMX (Stockholm). Dave Nadig, CEO of ETF.com and previously the director of ETFs at FactSet Research Systemsm believes we can expect to see Bitcoin Futures-based ETF launched in the U.S. by the end of this year. "Yes, you can already trade a derivative in Europe, an exchange traded note which tracks Bitcoin," Nadig adds. "Then the race in the U.S. is the race to see what gets approval first. Will it be a Bitcoin future or a straight up Bitcoin holding ETF? My bet is that we will see Bitcoin futures approved fairly quickly."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Open Source, Technology

Instagram adds Face Filters to live video, rolling out globally over the next few weeks (Instagram Blog)

TechMeme - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 1:01pm

Instagram Blog:
Instagram adds Face Filters to live video, rolling out globally over the next few weeks  —  Starting today, you can play with face filters while sharing live video.  Whether you're channeling a kitten or want to add some stars or rainbow light to your face, you can easily try on face filters …

Categories: Technology

PC Gaming Is Back in Focus at Tokyo Game Show

Slashdot - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 12:45pm
After taking a back seat to consoles for the past few years, personal computers are enjoying a resurgence in gaming, thanks to the popularity of e-sports, customizable machines and faster software releases. From a report: This week's Tokyo Game Show will feature a main-stage tournament for PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, a hit online survival PC game that's been downloaded more than 10 million times since March. Sony's PlayStation 4 and Microsoft's Xbox One consoles are heading into their fifth years, while Nintendo's Switch is in a bit of a lull before new titles are released for the year-end holiday shopping season. Spending on gaming-ready PC rigs are on track to climb an average of 6.6 percent per year through 2020, while the market as a whole is projected to decline 3.8 percent annually, according to Gartner. Revenue from PC titles will grow by 3 to 4 percent over the coming years, while console-game sales are seen flat, according to DFC Intelligence. Written off years ago for being too expensive, complex and bulky for mass appeal, gaming PCs are seeing a resurgence that could even threaten consoles, according to Kazunori Takahashi, Japan gaming head at Nvidia. "The abundance of titles and the popularity of e-sports is bringing a lot of excitement to PC gaming," said Takahashi, whose employer supplies graphic chips to PC and console makers. Even in Japan, "it's not unreasonable to think that PCs can eventually become a presence that threatens console gaming."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Open Source, Technology

Sources: Facebook and Google now negotiating changes for sex-trafficking bill SESTA with senators, after vehemently opposing it (Cecilia Kang/New York Times)

TechMeme - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 12:01pm

Cecilia Kang / New York Times:
Sources: Facebook and Google now negotiating changes for sex-trafficking bill SESTA with senators, after vehemently opposing it  —  WASHINGTON — Last month, Facebook and Google came out forcefully against a bill that would hold companies accountable for hosting sex trafficking on their websites.

Categories: Technology

The Lara Croft in the New 'Tomb Raider' Uncovers Treasure in Depth

Wired - Top Stories - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 11:29am
The new 'Tomb Raider' movie seems to be following the 2013 game reboot, meaning it stars a Lara who's more human, more complex, and more powerful for it.
Categories: Open Source, Technology

Self-Driving Cars Will Kill People. Who Decides Who Dies?

Wired - Top Stories - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 11:00am
Opinion: The dawn of autonomous vehicles means we must solve the trolley problem.
Categories: Open Source, Technology

You Should See 'mother!' This Weekend (Even If You'll Hate It)

Wired - Top Stories - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 9:00am
It's the most argued-about movie of the year, by far. Here's why it's worth your time.
Categories: Open Source, Technology

Starting to Study Physics? Watch Out for These Common Mistakes

Wired - Top Stories - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 9:00am
Here are the some of the biggest ideas that cause trouble for the first semester of physics.
Categories: Open Source, Technology

Lomography Lomo'Instant Automat Glass Magellan Review: It Urges Your to Get Experimental

Wired - Top Stories - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 8:00am
Lomo's funky instant camera kicks some serious glass.
Categories: Open Source, Technology

9 Amazon Kindle Tips and Tricks

Wired - Top Stories - Thu, 09/21/2017 - 7:00am
Your e-reader has some secret superpowers. Here's how to unlock its full potential.
Categories: Open Source, Technology