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D-Wave Makes Its Quantum Computers Free To Anyone Working On Coronavirus Crisis

Tue, 2020-03-31 22:50
An anonymous reader quotes a report from VentureBeat: D-Wave today made its quantum computers available for free to researchers and developers working on responses to the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. D-Wave partners and customers Cineca, Denso, Forschungszentrum Julich, Kyocera, MDR, Menten AI, NEC, OTI Lumionics, QAR Lab at LMU Munich, Sigma-i, Tohoku University, and Volkswagen are also offering to help. They will provide access to their engineering teams with expertise on how to use quantum computers, formulate problems, and develop solutions. Quantum computing leverages qubits to perform computations that would be much more difficult, or simply not feasible, for a classical computer. Based in Burnaby, Canada, D-Wave was the first company to sell commercial quantum computers, which are built to use quantum annealing. D-Wave says the move to make access free is a response to a cross-industry request from the Canadian government for solutions to the COVID-19 pandemic. Free and unlimited commercial contract-level access to D-Wave's quantum computers is available in 35 countries across North America, Europe, and Asia via Leap, the company's quantum cloud service. Just last month, D-Wave debuted Leap 2, which includes a hybrid solver service and solves problems of up to 10,000 variables.

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Categories: Linux fréttir

FCC Mandates Robocall-fighting Tech Be in Use By End of June 2021

Tue, 2020-03-31 22:10
The Federal Communications Commission voted Tuesday to finalize rules requiring phone companies to use the Shaken/Stir protocol to automatically block calls to fight illegal robocalls. The new rules mandate the use of the technology by all voice providers by the end of June of 2021. From a report: The rules come after Congress passed and President Donald Trump signed into law the Traced Act last year. The law, which makes Shaken/Stir compliance mandatory for all voice service providers, directed the FCC to develop rules within 18 months. The FCC has said previously that eliminating the wasted time and the nuisance caused by illegal scam robocalls could save the US economy $3 billion annually.

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Xerox Ends Its Hostile Takeover Bid For HP

Tue, 2020-03-31 21:50
Xeros is pulling the plug on its hostile bid to buy larger rival HP (Warning: paywalled; alternative source) after the coronavirus pandemic undermined the copier maker's ability to pull off the debt-laden merger. The Wall Street Journal reports: Xerox said Tuesday it is ending both its more than $30 billion tender offer and a proxy fight to replace the printer and PC maker's board. Xerox concluded it is no longer prudent to pursue the deal given the public health crisis and resulting market swoon. The move puts the kibosh on one of the biggest mergers in the works and underscores the blow that the coronavirus has dealt to the world of deal making. It marks the end of a five-month-long offensive by Xerox, kicked off when its offer became public in early November after the two companies had earlier explored a combination quietly but failed to come to an agreement. HP has repeatedly rebuffed its rival since then, rejecting Xerox's latest cash-and-stock offer of $24 a share and an earlier one as insufficient and too risky given the amount of debt involved. Xerox's move to buy a company more than three times its size was always going to be a challenge, but at the outset the company was in a stronger position than it is today. It had cash coming in from the sale of its joint venture with Fujifilm and its stock had been rising as it continued to cut costs.

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Why Do Matter Particles Come in Threes? A Physics Titan Weighs In.

Tue, 2020-03-31 21:30
Three progressively heavier copies of each type of matter particle exist, and no one knows why. A new paper by Steven Weinberg takes a stab at explaining the pattern. From a report: Electrons and two types of quarks, dubbed "up" and "down," mix in various ways to produce every atom in existence. But puzzlingly, this family of matter particles -- the up quark, down quark and electron -- is not the only one. Physicists have discovered that they make up the first of three successive "generations" of particles, each heavier than the last. The second- and third-generation particles transform into their lighter counterparts too quickly to form exotic cats, but they otherwise behave identically. It's as if the laws of nature were composed in triplicate. "We don't know why," said Heather Logan, a particle physicist at Carleton University. In the 1970s, when physicists first worked out the Standard Model of particle physics -- the still-reigning set of equations describing the known elementary particles and their interactions -- they sought some deep principle that would explain why three generations of each type of matter particle exist. No one cracked the code, and the question was largely set aside. Now, though, the Nobel Prize-winning physicist Steven Weinberg, one of the architects of the Standard Model, has revived the old puzzle. Weinberg, who is 86 and a professor at the University of Texas, Austin, argued in a recent paper in the journal Physical Review D that an intriguing pattern in the particles' masses could lead the way forward. "Weinberg's paper is a bit of lightning in the dark," said Anthony Zee, a theoretical physicist at the University of California, Santa Barbara. "All of a sudden a titan in the field is suddenly working again on these problems." "I'm very happy to see that he thinks it's important to revisit this problem," said Mu-Chun Chen, a physicist at the University of California, Irvine. Many theorists are ready to give up, she said, but "we should still be optimistic."

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HPE, Intel and Linux Foundation Team Up For Open Source Software for 5G Core

Tue, 2020-03-31 20:49
HPE announced on Tuesday it's working with Intel and the Linux Foundation on a new open source software project to help automate the roll out of 5G across multiple sites. From a report: The new partnership, which will be under the Linux Foundation umbrella, is called the Open Distributed Infrastructure Management Framework. The partnership represents HPE's move into the 5G core network space as it branches out from its enterprise roots. Other partners for the open source project include AMI, Apstra, IBM's Red Hat, Tech Mahindra and World Wide Technology. HPE will also introduce an enterprise offering, the HPE Open Distributed Infrastructure Management Resource Aggregator.

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Zoom is Leaking Peoples' Email Addresses and Photos To Strangers

Tue, 2020-03-31 20:01
Popular video-conferencing Zoom is leaking personal information of at least thousands of users, including their email address and photo, and giving strangers the ability to attempt to start a video call with them through Zoom. From a report: The issue lies in Zoom's "Company Directory" setting, which automatically adds other people to a user's lists of contacts if they signed up with an email address that shares the same domain. This can make it easier to find a specific colleague to call when the domain belongs to an individual company. But multiple Zoom users say they signed up with personal email addresses, and Zoom pooled them together with thousands of other people as if they all worked for the same company, exposing their personal information to one another.

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C.D.C. Weighs Advising Everyone To Wear a Mask

Tue, 2020-03-31 19:30
Widespread use of nonmedical masks could reduce community transmission. But recommending their broad use could also cause a run on the kind of masks that health care workers desperately need. From a report: Should healthy people be wearing masks when they're outside to protect themselves and others? Both the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have repeatedly said that ordinary citizens do not need to wear masks unless they are sick and coughing. And as health care workers around the world face shortages of N95 masks and protective gear, public health officials have warned people not to hoard masks. But those official guidelines may be shifting. On Monday during the coronavirus task force briefing, President Trump was asked whether Americans should wear nonmedical masks. "That's certainly something we could discuss," he said. "It could be something like that for a limited period of time." Dr. Robert Redfield, the director of the C.D.C., confirmed in an interview with National Public Radio on Monday that the agency was reviewing its guidelines on who should wear masks. Citing new data that shows high rates of transmission from people who are infected but show no symptoms, he said the guidance on mask wearing was "being critically re-reviewed, to see if there's potential additional value for individuals that are infected or individuals that may be asymptomatically infected." The coronavirus is probably three times as infectious as the flu, Dr. Redfield said.

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Linux Mint 20 is 64-bit Only, Based on Ubuntu 20.04, and Named 'Ulyana'

Tue, 2020-03-31 18:50
An anonymous reader shares a report: Today, we learn some new details about the upcoming Linux Mint 20. While most of the newly revealed information is positive, there is one thing that is sure to upset many Linux Mint users. First things first, Linux Mint 20 will be based on the upcoming Ubuntu 20.04. This shouldn't come as a surprise, as Mint only uses Long Term Support versions of Ubuntu, and 20.04 will be an LTS. We also now know the name of Linux Mint 20. The Mint team always uses female names, and this time they chose "Ulyana." This is apparently a Russian name meaning "youthful." So far, all of the news is positive, so what exactly will upset some users? The Linux Mint developers are finally dropping 32-bit support and will only produce 64-bit ISOs.

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Apple Acquires Dark Sky App To Boost Weather Data on iPhones

Tue, 2020-03-31 18:11
Apple acquired popular mobile weather service Dark Sky to help bolster the Weather applications on its devices. From a report: The service, which has existed on the web and on iPhone and Android platforms, stood out from the competition by offering more specific data and notifications such as when it is about to rain. Dark Sky announced the deal on its website, saying "we're thrilled to have the opportunity to reach far more people, with far more impact, than we ever could alone." The companies didn't specify the price of the deal. Apple has included a Weather app on its devices since the first iPhone and currently gets its data from The Weather Channel. It could use this purchase to revamp its Weather app.

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SiriusXM is Free Through May 15 To Help With Coronavirus Isolation Boredom

Tue, 2020-03-31 17:25
Satellite radio giant SiriusXM announced today it's made its 300-plus channel streaming service available for free in North America starting today through May 15.

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Trump Won the Internet. Democrats Are Scrambling to Take It Back.

Tue, 2020-03-31 16:45
In the era of big data, memes and disinformation, the Democrats are trying to regain their digital edge as the president and his loyalists dictate the terms of debate. From a report: The deceptively edited video that purported to show Joseph R. Biden Jr. endorsing President Trump's re-election bounced relentlessly around the internet, falsely painting the former vice president as too confused to know what office he was running for or whom he was vying to run against. The doctored video didn't originate with one of the extremist sites that trade in left-bashing disinformation. It was posted on Twitter by Mr. Trump's own social media director. [...] The video, based on a speech Mr. Biden gave earlier this month, registered five million views in a day before his campaign responded -- with statements to the press and cable interviews that largely focused on persuading Facebook to follow the example of Twitter, which had labeled the content "manipulated media." A direct social media counterattack, aides said later, would have risked spreading the damage. [...] As Mr. Biden closes in on his party's nomination, that digital mismatch underscores one of the Democrats' biggest general-election challenges: They are up against a political figure who has marshaled all the forces of the modern web to refract reality and savage his opponents. Yet they are starting from a deficit, struggling to regain their once-formidable online edge. Now closing this technological divide has taken on deepening urgency, with public life shut down against the threat of the coronavirus. Already, Mr. Biden's allies have expressed anxiety about his ability to break into the national conversation around the pandemic as it reverberates from the president's daily briefings to social media feeds. If modern politics is increasingly digital politics, today even more so. In the three years since Hillary Clinton's humiliating 2016 defeat, the Democrats have been urgently scrambling to reorder the digital equation, an all-hands-on-deck effort that has drawn a range of new donors, progressive activists and operatives together with veterans of the tech-forward Obama campaigns and the old-line contributors and party regulars of the Bill Clinton era. So far, the Democrats and their allies have produced new apps to organize volunteers and register voters, new media outlets to pump out anti-Trump content and a major new data initiative to drive what the party hopes will be the biggest voter-mobilization effort in its history.

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FBI Re-sends Alert About Supply Chain Attacks For the Third Time in Three Months

Tue, 2020-03-31 16:09
The FBI has issued an alert on Monday about state-sponsored hackers using the Kwampirs malware to attack supply chain companies and other industry sectors as part of a global hacking campaign. From a report: This marks the third alert about this particular group sent this year, in as many months, after the FBI sent alerts on January 6 and February 5. This time around, the FBI highlighted that some of the group's targets are organizations in the healthcare industry, currently grappling with the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Besides sending out a PIN (Private Industry Notification), the FBI has also published two Flash alerts, one containing YARA rules to identify the group's Kwampirs malware on infected networks, and the second containing a technical report, complete with IOCs (indicators of compromise).

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Zoom Meetings Aren't End-to-End Encrypted, Despite Misleading Marketing

Tue, 2020-03-31 15:27
An anonymous reader shares a report: Zoom, the video conferencing service whose use has spiked amid the Covid-19 pandemic, claims to implement end-to-end encryption, widely understood as the most private form of internet communication, protecting conversations from all outside parties. In fact, Zoom is using its own definition of the term, one that lets Zoom itself access unencrypted video and audio from meetings. With millions of people around the world working from home in order to slow the spread of the coronavirus, business is booming for Zoom, bringing more attention on the company and its privacy practices, including a policy, later updated, that seemed to give the company permission to mine messages and files shared during meetings for the purpose of ad targeting. Still, Zoom offers reliability, ease of use, and at least one very important security assurance: As long as you make sure everyone in a Zoom meeting connects using "computer audio" instead of calling in on a phone, the meeting is secured with end-to-end encryption, at least according to Zoom's website, its security white paper, and the user interface within the app. But despite this misleading marketing, the service actually does not support end-to-end encryption for video and audio content, at least as the term is commonly understood. Instead it offers what is usually called transport encryption. Further reading: Regarding Zoom.

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Comcast Details What the Coronavirus Has Done To Network Traffic

Tue, 2020-03-31 14:45
Comcast said that internet traffic has risen 32% because of the coronavirus, but the company said it has the capacity to handle peak traffic demands in the U.S. From a report: Tony Werner, Comcast president of technology, said in a press briefing that the company normally adds capacity 12-18 months ahead of time, with typical plans targeting 45% a year increases in traffic. "First and foremost, I think it's important to know that the network is performing well," Werner said. "And people are able to -- both business and customers working from home -- do the things they need to do with a great deal of proficiency." He said the company engineers the networks for "peak traffic" and that traffic is up more than 32% overall as of last week. Some parts of the country are up 60%, including Seattle, San Francisco, and now Chicago. [...] Video conference calls using the voice-over-internet-protocol on Comcast are up 212% since March 1.

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Houseparty App Offers $1M Reward To Unmask Entity Behind Hacking Smear Campaign

Tue, 2020-03-31 14:05
Houseparty, a video conferencing desktop and mobile application, said it would pay a $1 million bounty to anyone who could unmask the entity behind what the company described as "a paid commercial smear campaign." From a report: The company's apparent anger comes after Houseparty has been at the center of media reports published yesterday by three British tabloids. The Sun, the Express, and Mirror Online reported on Monday on a large number of Houseparty users claiming they had social media accounts hacked and taken over after installing the video conferencing app on their smartphones. Users reported having Netflix, eBay, Instagram, Snapchat, and Spotify accounts taken over; however, very few were able to provide details about what really happened. Houseparty officials feel they're now being defamed unjustly in a game of dirty politics.

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Samsung Display To End All LCD Production By End 2020

Tue, 2020-03-31 13:00
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Reuters: South Korean panel maker Samsung Display has decided to end all of its production of liquid crystal display (LCD) panels in South Korea and China by end of this year, a spokesperson said on Tuesday. Samsung Display, a unit of South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, said in October that it suspended one of its two LCD production lines at home amid falling demand for LCD panels and a supply glut. 'We will supply LCD orders to our customers by end of this year without any issues', the company said in a statement.

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Ford, GE To Produce 50,000 Ventilators In 100 Days

Tue, 2020-03-31 10:00
Ford Motor and GE Healthcare plan to produce 50,000 ventilators within the next 100 days at a facility in Michigan to assist with the coronavirus pandemic. CNBC reports: Production of the critical care devices is expected to begin with 500 United Auto Workers union members the week of April 20, according to executives at both companies. Ford's Rawsonville Components Plant in Ypsilanti, Michigan will be able to produce 30,000 ventilators a month after early-July, officials said. The companies expect to produce 1,500 by the end of April, 12,000 by the end of May and 50,000 by July 4, officials said. The design of the ventilator is being licensed by GE Healthcare from Florida-based Airon Corp., a small, privately held company specializing in high-tech pneumatic life support products. The devices are simpler, less complex than GE ventilators Ford previously said it would assist the company in producing at other facilities .

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The ACM Digital Library Is Now Open Access During Coronavirus Pandemic

Tue, 2020-03-31 07:00
The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) has made the ACM Digital Library open access to help support the computing community during the coronavirus pandemic. Founded in 1947, the ACM is the world's largest scientific and educational computing society and publishes over 50 journals, including the prestigious Journal of the ACM, and two general magazines for computer professionals, Communications of the ACM and Queue. "We believe that ACM can help support research, discovery and learning during this time of crisis by opening the ACM Digital Library to all," writes ACM President Cherri Pancake in a letter on ACM.org. "For the next three months, there will be no fees assessed for accessing or downloading work published by ACM. We hope this will help researchers, practitioners and students maintain access to our publications as well as increasing visibility and awareness of ACM's journals, proceedings and magazines." The ACM DL will continue to be open through June 30, 2020. "This global health crisis is a unique challenge that has impacted many ACM members," adds Pancake. "We would like to express our concern and support for all who are affected by this outbreak."

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Authors, Publishers Condemn the 'National Emergency Library' As 'Piracy'

Tue, 2020-03-31 03:30
An anonymous reader quotes a report from NPR: Last week, when the Internet Archive announced its "National Emergency Library," expanding access to more than a million digitized works, the group explained the move as a goodwill gesture in the time of coronavirus. With so many brick-and-mortar libraries forced to close their doors, in other words, the group was opening up its lending program: Now, instead of its usual policy of just one digital copy per reader for a 14-day period, many frustrated readers could borrow copies of the same book during the same time -- and could do so through the end of June or the end of the global pandemic, whichever came sooner. But there's one major issue that several media outlets, including NPR, failed to mention in covering the decision: Many writers and publishers say the website, even before the creation of this National Emergency Library, has been sharing full digital copies of their books without their permission. And over the weekend, dozens of prominent authors, from Colson Whitehead and Neil Gaiman to Alexander Chee, made clear that they were upset with the Internet Archive's model -- and doubly so now, with the expansion of lending services and its timing. "With mean writing incomes of only $20,300 a year prior to the crisis, authors, like others, are now struggling all the more â" from cancelled book tours and loss of freelance work, income supplementing jobs, and speaking engagements," the Authors Guild, a professional group that provides legal assistance to writers, said in a statement released Friday. "And now they are supposed to swallow this new pill, which robs them of their rights to introduce their books to digital formats as many hundreds of midlist authors do when their books go out of print, and which all but guarantees that author incomes and publisher revenues will decline even further." "Acting as a piracy site -- of which there already are too many -- the Internet Archive tramples on authors' rights by giving away their books to the world," the guild added. The Internet Archive pushed back against this characterization with a lengthy rebuttal. Brewster Kahle of the Internet Archive said the group "uses the same controls limiting access to these works as the publishers themselves, with encrypted files that are meant to disappear from the user's computer after a brief period," reports NPR. "The copies the group lends, Kahle said, are owned by the Internet Archive -- either through donations, straight-up purchases or collaborations with brick-and-mortar libraries."

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Dutch Museum Says Van Gogh Painting Stolen In Overnight Raid

Tue, 2020-03-31 02:10
The Singer Laren museum in Laren, east of Amsterdam, says thieves have made off with a prize Vincent van Gogh painting while the institution was closed to the public. artnet News reports: The break-in at the museum happened in the early hours of Monday morning, at around 3:15 a.m. The thieves smashed a large glass door at the front of the museum to access the building. Police reached the scene after the museum's alarm was triggered, but the perpetrators had vanished by the time they arrived, according to a statement from the local authorities. To add insult to injury, [the Dutch master's The Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Spring (1884) painting] does not even belong to the museum -- it was on loan from the Groninger Museum in Groningen, the Netherlands, according to the police. The 1884 work was the only painting by Van Gogh in the Groninger Museum's collection. It was painted when Van Gogh was living in Neunen, where his father was a pastor, between 1883 and 1885, and depicts the ruins of the village church, which the artist could see from his father's house. (The date of the theft also happens to be the artist's birthday: he was born on March 30, 1853.)

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