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This 'Robot Lawyer' Can Take the Mystery Out of License Agreements

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 14:00
DoNotPay, the "robot lawyer" service that helps you contest parking tickets and even sue people, is launching a new tool to help customers understand license agreements. From a report: Called "Do Not Sign," the service is included with DoNotPay's monthly $3 subscription fee, and it lets users upload, scan, or copy and paste the URLs of any license agreements they'd like to check. The service uses machine learning to highlight clauses it thinks users need to know about, including options to opt out from data collection. It's available starting today, November 20th, on the web and via DoNotPay's app on iOS. Agreeing to lengthy license agreements is an almost weekly occurrence for many people, with modern smart devices forcing you to hit "agree" on every new contract. Do Not Sign isn't a replacement for a real lawyer, but it's better than accepting a license agreement sight unseen so you can start using a shiny new gadget, service, or app without delay.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

Huawexit means Huawexit! Uncle Sam gets 300 applications to dodge ban on supplying Chinese comms beast

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 13:23
Reminds us of a small island nation's attempt to leave a certain political union

The US Department of Commerce has agreed to grant several exemptions to its ban on Huawei, in what appears to be the Chinese kit maker's second reprieve this week.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Vertebrates Became Predators By Tweaking the Neural Crest

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 13:00
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Phys.Org: Caltech scientists have discovered that a population of embryonic stem cells called neural crest cells may help explain how vertebrates progressively evolved a more and more efficient head. Neural crest cells originate within the developing central nervous system before migrating throughout the embryo. They are a major player in the development of the jaws and other important components of the head and face, making them a good candidate for a role in vertebrate head evolution. The study, led by postdoctoral scholar Megan Martik, began by comparing the genetic makeup of lamprey neural crest with that of chicken embryos. The team discovered that the lamprey neural crest cells lacked important genes that are present in the head neural crest of birds and mammals, and critical for making advanced structures like the jaw. The team wondered how the neural crest ultimately acquired the genes. To look for clues, they examined the neural crest genes of animals that have jaws, such as sharks and zebrafish, and evolved after lamprey but well before chickens and other birds. Martik and her colleagues found that the genetic program that helped to make the head more sophisticated was created by the progressive addition of genes to the neural crest repertoire as the vertebrate tree of life advanced and new species evolved. The study has been published in the journal Nature.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

Mysterious IT snafu at British Airways causes bunch of inbound flight delays and cancellations

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 12:21
Makes you think pen and paper would be a better alternative

British Airways suffered yet another IT failure, causing knock-on flight delays and cancellations for thousands of unhappy travellers*.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

The lure of Brexit Britain proves too great for DevOps pipeline wrangler CircleCI

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 11:09
A new office for Blighty 'wherever Brexit lands'

Devops pipeline outfit CircleCI has ignored Britain's looming withdrawl from the EU to set up a European beachhead in London, headed up by a freshly poached Facebook exec.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

We're so, so, sorry you're not able to get PC chips, says Intel to everyone who hasn't gone with AMD yet

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 10:02
Epyc apology, Chipzilla

Intel has issued an open letter apologizing to punters and partners alike for its inability to meet demand for processors.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Ride-Hailing Apps Have Allowed More Binging and Increased Demand For Bartenders

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 10:00
A study published last week analyzed ridesharing's effects on binge drinking and found that it increased heavy drinking by around 20% and increased employment at bars and restaurants by an average of 2%. The Economist reports: A new study by three economists -- Jacob Burgdorf and Conor Lennon of the University of Louisville, and Keith Teltser of Georgia State University -- finds that the widespread availability of ride-sharing apps has indeed made it easier for the late-night crowd to binge. By matching data on Uber's availability with health surveys from America's Centers for Disease Control, the authors find that on average alcohol consumption rose by 3%, binge drinking -- where a person downs four or five drinks in two hours -- increased by 8%, and heavy drinking -- defined as three or more instances of binge drinking in a month -- surged by 9% within a couple of years of the ride-hailing company coming to town. Increases were even higher in cities without public transport, where the presence of Uber led average drinking to rise by 5% and instances of binge drinking to go up by around 20%. (Heavy drinking still rose by 9%.) Remarkably, excessive drinking was actually declining before Uber's appearance, giving further evidence that the firm's arrival affected behavior. If people are likelier to drink a lot, but less likely to drive drunk, it is hard to say what the overall public-health impact of ride-hailing firms has been. That said, there is one group of individuals who clearly benefit from the presence of Uber, Lyft and others: bartenders. Messrs Burgdorf, Lennon and Teltser find that employment at bars and restaurants increases by an average of 2% whenever Uber enters the market.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

Update Docker: Fun bug involving file paths and shared libraries turns out to be a security hole

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 09:15
Chroots maneuver

Miscreants can potentially hijack Docker users' computers by tricking them into running malicious containers and waiting for them to kick off a simple copy command – thanks to a critical flaw.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

You wanted flying cars and colony worlds. Instead, IKEA furniture-building-ish AI robots

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 07:56
Bettåma than nöthurihag

For many of us, assembling IKEA furniture is proof that while Scandinavians are no longer vikings, they can still ruin your day.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

UK tax collectors warn contractors about being ripped-off – and not by HMRC for a change

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 07:05
Self-assessment phishing and phone scam alert raised

The UK’s tax authorities have issued an official warning to contractors to watch out for self-assessment scams - and they don’t mean IR35 for a change.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

A Mysterious Burst of Energy In Space Has Smashed Records

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 07:00
For the first time, astrophysicists have observed a cosmic explosion emit particles that are a trillion times more energetic than visible light, a record-setting measurement from a phenomenon that scientists are still seeking to fully understand. Motherboard reports: The observation of this powerful gamma-ray burst (GRB), as these explosions are known, adds another layer to what scientists think happens when a star implodes. The findings were published on November 20 in two papers in the journal Nature. [...] After the GRB was detected, telescopes on the island of La Palma in the Canary Islands quickly adjusted to observe it. The telescopes are overseen by the MAGIC collaboration, weigh 64 tons each, and were designed to measure extremely high-energy emissions from gamma-ray bursts. They automatically process alerts from satellites and adjust to face the bursts in less than a minute. A fast response time is crucial: Gamma-ray bursts can last from a fraction of a second to mere minutes. Elena Moretti was one of the scientists working the night of the GRB's detection, and a co-author of the two studies. The burst came from a progenitor star that was 4.5 billion light-years away, according to the studies -- relatively close, astronomically speaking. The farther away high-energy particles are from Earth, the more likely they are to be absorbed by extragalactic background light and not reach our telescopes. After verifying that the GRB observed emitted photons in the TeV range, scientists realized the process used to explain and model these bursts could not account for such a high energy. Instead, Moretti said they are nearly certain that the emitted photons were raised to a TeV-level energy after colliding with nearby electrons.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

Orange is the new green: Nigeria scammer bags $1m while operating behind bars

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 05:54
Fraudster oversaw operation with contraband phone

A convicted fraudster housed in a maximum security prison in Nigeria managed to pull off a $1m (£775,000) online scam from behind bars.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Astroboffins spot the most energetic photons yet from gamma ray burst – and here's hoping Earth is right in the way of the next one

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 04:50
Yes, more energetic than a pedantic Trekkie correcting you

Scientists have detected the most-energetic photons yet seen from a gamma ray burst, with energies nearing a trillion electron volts.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Ayahuasca Alters Brain Waves To Produce Waking Dream-Like State, Study Finds

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 03:30
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: People under the influence of a psychedelic brew known as ayahuasca frequently experience vivid visual and aural hallucinations and also report feeling as if they are in a dream. Now a new study published in Scientific Reports has shown that the drug alters the user's waking brain-wave patterns to produce a mental state that the researchers describe as "dreaming while awake." Ayahuasca is a bitter tea made from the Brazilian vine banisteriopsis caapi, colloquially known as the "spirit vine," used in shaman-led spiritual ceremonies among native people in the Amazon basin. Its primary active ingredient is dimethyltryptamine (DMT). That's the secret to ayahuasca's powerful psychedelic effects, which can also produce feelings of elation and fear or a sense of epiphany or psychological breakthrough. Those mind-altering properties come at a price, however. Participants in the ceremonies are often advised to bring a bucket, since nausea and vomiting (and sometimes diarrhea) are common reactions to the tea. The current paper is the most recent study out of the [Imperial College London's Center for Psychedelic Research]. The study involved 13 subjects fitted with EEG caps and electrodes to monitor their brain activity while being given an IV infusion of DMT. The team found that the DMT caused a marked drop in alpha waves, a mark of wakefulness, along with a corresponding brief increase in theta brain waves, indicative of a dream state. Furthermore, while brain activity has been shown to decrease in subjects under the influence of psilocybin and LSD, the Imperial College researchers found more chaotic brain activity in subjects while under the influence of DMT. That might be why ayahuasca users report more vivid visual effects and a greater sense of immersion than is typically experienced with other psychedelics.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

Google To Limit Targeting of Political Ads

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 02:50
Google said on Wednesday that it will stop giving advertisers the ability to target election ads using data such as public voter records and general political affiliations. Reuters reports: Google said on Wednesday it would start limiting audience targeting for election ads to age, gender and general location at a postal code level. Previously, verified political advertisers could also target ads using data such as whether the users were left-leaning, right-leaning or independent. Google said political advertisers can still do contextual targeting, such as serving ads to people reading a certain story or watching a particular video. The company will begin enforcing the new approach in the United Kingdom within a week, ahead of the country's general election on Dec. 12. It said it would begin enforcing it in the European Union by the end of the year and in the rest of the world starting on Jan. 6, 2020. "Given recent concerns and debates about political advertising, and the importance of shared trust in the democratic process, we want to improve voters' confidence in the political ads they may see on our ad platforms," Scott Spencer, vice president of product management for Google Ads, said in the blog post. Google added examples to its misrepresentation policy to show that it would not allow false claims about election results or the eligibility of political candidates. Google also added examples to its ad policies to clarify that it prohibits doctored and manipulated media.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

System76 Will Start Designing and Building Its Own Linux Laptops Beginning January 2020

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 02:10
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Forbes: Denver-based PC manufacturer and Pop!_OS Linux developer System76 plans to follow-up its custom Thelio desktop PC with an in-house laptop beginning next year, according to founder and CEO Carl Richell. During a recent interview, Richell was quick to emphasize that the entire process of designing, prototyping and iterating the final product could take two to three years. But the company is eager to break into this market and put the same signature "stamp" on its laptop hardware that graces its custom-built Thelio desktop. System76 sells an extensive lineup of laptops, but the machines are designed by the likes of Sager and Clevo. The company doesn't merely buy a chassis and slap Pop!_OS on it, but Richell tells me he's confident that with the experience gained from developing Thelio -- and the recent investment into a factory at the company's Denver headquarters -- System76 is capable of building a laptop from the ground up that meets market needs and carries a unique value proposition. Richell says the company's first priority is locking down the aesthetic of the laptop and how various materials look and feel. It will simultaneously begin working on the supply chain aspects and speaking with various display and component manufacturers. System76 will design and build a U-class laptop first (basically an Ultrabook form factor like the existing Darter and Galago) and then evaluate what it might do with higher-end gaming and workstation notebooks with dedicated graphics.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

We lose money on repairs, sobs penniless Apple, even though we charge y'all a fortune

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 01:38
Spare a thought for the lives of the creative accountants

It can be tough in the repair industry, and no one knows that better than struggling corporation Apple.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Ask Slashdot: How Do You Teach Inventing To Kids?

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 01:30
dryriver writes: Everybody seems to think these days that kids desperately need to learn how to code when they turn six years old. But this ignores a glaring fact -- the biggest shortage in the future labor market is not people who can code competently in Python, Java or C++, it is people who can actually discover or invent completely new and better ways of doing things, whether this is in CS, Physics, Chemistry, Biology or other fields. If you look at the history of great inventors, the last truly gifted, driven and prolific non-corporate inventor is widely regarded to be Nikola Tesla, who had around 700 patents to his name by the time he died. After Tesla, most new products, techniques and inventions have come out of corporate, government or similar structures, not from a good old-fashioned, dedicated, driven, independent-minded, one-person inventor who feverishly dreams up new things and new possibilities and works for the betterment of humanity. How do you teach inventing to kids? By teaching them the methods of Genrikh Altshuller, for example. Seriously, does teaching five to seven year olds 50-year-old CS/coding concepts and techniques do more for society than teaching kids to rebel against convention, think outside the box, turn convention upside down and beat their own path towards solving a thorny problem? Why does society want to create an army of code monkeys versus an army of kids who learn how to invent new things from a young age? Or don't we want little Nikola Teslas in the 21st Century, because that creates "uncertainty" and "risk to established ways of doing things?"

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

SpaceX's Prototype Starship Rocket Partially Bursts During Testing In Texas

Slashdot - Thu, 2019-11-21 00:50
A test version of SpaceX's next-generation rocket, Starship, partially burst apart during ground tests in Texas today, erupting plumes of gas and sending some pieces of hardware soaring into the sky. The Verge reports: The explosive result occurred while SpaceX was seemingly conducting some pressure tests with the vehicle at the company's test site in Boca Chica, Texas. The local live streams showed the vehicle venting gas periodically throughout the day, indicating that testing was underway. This prototype was meant to test the design of Starship -- a monster spacecraft the company is working on to transport cargo and people to deep space destinations like the Moon and Mars. In fact, this same vehicle is the one that SpaceX CEO Elon Musk showed off to reporters in September. At the time, he claimed the test vehicle could be doing flights to low altitudes within the next couple of months and that some version of Starship could reach Earth orbit within six months. Now, that timeline is almost certain to shift. After the explosion, Musk indicated on Twitter that SpaceX may no longer fly this particular prototype and will instead conduct flight tests with a newer, more up-to-date model that the company planned to build. "This had some value as a manufacturing pathfinder, but flight design is quite different," Musk wrote, referring to the prototype that burst.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Linux fréttir

Amnesty slams Facebook, Google over 'pervasive surveillance' business model

TheRegister - Thu, 2019-11-21 00:25
Rights warriors want governments to actually, y'know, do something – anything

Amnesty International says the "pervasive surveillance" practiced by Facebook and Google represents a threat to human rights, a claim the two companies dispute.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

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