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Industry & Technology

Huawei’s Mate 10 blends AI into every part of the smartphone experience

Ars Technica - October 16, 2017 - 2:00pm

Enlarge (credit: Valentina Palladino)

Huawei's first "AI-powered" smartphone, the Mate 9, debuted last year, and the Chinese company continues to dive further into the benefits of artificial intelligence in its newest smartphones. Huawei announced the Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro smartphones today, both of which promise not only hardware improvements over the Mate 9, but also more AI power thanks to a dedicated neural network processing unit (NPU). While most of us are accustomed to AI assistants on our smartphones (think Siri, Google Assistant, Cortana, and Alexa), Huawei is taking a more embedded approach to AI, focusing on how a dedicated NPU can increase performance and efficiency over time as it learns about everything you do with your smartphone.


The Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro have a number of small and somewhat confusing differences between them. Let's first cover what they have in common: both run Android Oero and EMUI 8.0. Huawei's Kirin 970 CPU, 12-core Mali G72 GPU, and new NPU for AI processing power both devices. The handsets also have the same 4,000 mAh battery that supports fast charging, allowing them to charge up to 58 percent in just 30 minutes.

Huawei continues its collaboration with Leica on the Mate 10 handsets. Both have dual f/1.6 rear camera setups, featuring a 20MP monochrome lens and a 12MP RGB lens with optical image stabilization. The front-facing camera is the same, standard 8MP shooter on both models, too. Both the Mate 10 and the Mate 10 Pro have all-glass bodies with a nearly one-inch-wide, reflective stripe on the back of the handset underneath the camera setup. The smartphones' design is very similar to the Mate 9, just with slightly slimmer bezels and refined details.

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Huawei's glass and metal Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro - CNET - News - October 16, 2017 - 2:00pm
Luxury materials result in a great-looking phone with dual cameras and skinny bezels.

South Park Fractured but Whole review: Emphasis on the “fractured”

Ars Technica - October 16, 2017 - 1:30pm

Enlarge / As a watchable piece of entertainment, The Fractured But Whole does pretty well. As a game, on the other hand... (credit: Ubisoft)

Three-and-a-half years have passed, and yet I still can't get over how good a video game South Park: The Stick of Truth turned out to be. Licensed games have improved a lot in recent years, but their quality is never guaranteed, and the South Park license had never been used to solid effect until that 2014 RPG came along. (A major legal-rights shuffling didn't help Stick of Truth's pre-release worries, either.)

In that game, Obsidian Entertainment and South Park Studios took roughly 15 years of South Park material (basically, everything after the Bigger, Longer, and Uncut film), then recapped and celebrated the series' best characters and most NSFW plotlines. More importantly, its power as a video game was used to incredible effect, whether by sending up RPG tropes and traditions or by making its interactive moments nearly as funny as its scripted ones.

That's quite the bottle of lightning, and there's no shame in the fact that its video game sequel, this week's The Fractured but Whole, doesn't recapture the same incredibly crude magic. But it's still sad how much the series' new developers at Ubisoft missed the mark here. This is by no means a bad video game—and effort was absolutely poured into making its RPG elements feel more substantial than last time—but the LEGO bricks of this game's combat, exploration, themes, and South Park-caliber script were all put in the wrong order.

Read 16 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Boffins suggest UK needs an 'AI council' but regulation is for squares

The Register - October 16, 2017 - 1:28pm
Industry-focused review instead recommends 'data trusts' to establish framework for the tech

Boffins have recommended the British government establishes a council to oversee and coordinate artificial intelligence across the private and public sectors.…

Huawei dunks server triplets in Skylake for a v5 refresh

The Register - October 16, 2017 - 12:58pm
Fifth version server threesome pops up

Huawei has refreshed three third generation modular rack server products from older Xeons to Skylake processors with a v5 refresh giving them updated networking and storage options.…

Remember how you said it was cool if your mobe network sold your name, number and location?

The Register - October 16, 2017 - 12:49pm
No? Well, never mind, because it's for your own protection

US mobile phone companies appear to be selling their customers' private data – including their full name, phone number, contract details, home zip code and current location to third parties – all in the name of security.…

WPA2 KRACK attack smacks Wi-Fi security: Fundamental crypto crapto

The Register - October 16, 2017 - 12:36pm
Key handshake shakedown

Updated Users are urged to continue using WPA2 pending the availability of a fix, experts have said, as a security researcher went public with more information about a serious flaw in the security protocol.…

Singaporean data disruptor Circles.Life plans regional expansion - CNET - News - October 16, 2017 - 12:01pm
The company plans to launch mobile services in Indonesia before the next year and is also planning to enter the Hong Kong market.

Millions of high-security crypto keys crippled by newly discovered flaw

Ars Technica - October 16, 2017 - 12:00pm

Enlarge / 750,000 Estonian cards that look like this use a 2048-bit RSA key that can be factored in a matter of days. (credit: Steve Jurvetson)

A crippling flaw in a widely used code library has fatally undermined the security of millions of encryption keys used in some of the highest-stakes settings, including national identity cards, software- and application-signing, and trusted platform modules protecting government and corporate computers.

The weakness allows attackers to calculate the private portion of any vulnerable key using nothing more than the corresponding public portion. Hackers can then use the private key to impersonate key owners, decrypt sensitive data, sneak malicious code into digitally signed software, and bypass protections that prevent accessing or tampering with stolen PCs. The five-year-old flaw is also troubling because it's located in code that complies with two internationally recognized security certification standards that are binding on many governments, contractors, and companies around the world. The code library was developed by German chipmaker Infineon and has been generating weak keys since 2012 at the latest.

The flaw is the one Estonia's government obliquely referred to last month when it warned that 750,000 digital IDs issued since 2014 were vulnerable to attack. Estonian officials said they were closing the ID card public key database to prevent abuse. On Monday, officials posted this update. Last week, Microsoft, Google, and Infineon all warned how the weakness can impair the protections built into TPM products that ironically enough are designed to give an additional measure of security to high-targeted individuals and organizations.

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Drone collides with commercial aeroplane in Canada

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2017 - 12:00pm
The aircraft sustained only minor damage and landed safely, the Canadian transport minister said.

Xperia XZ1: Sony spies with its MotionEye something beginning...

The Register - October 16, 2017 - 11:42am
with ... oh, another very good iPhone, Pixel, S8 undercutter

Review You know where you are with a Sony - this year’s are much like last year’s. And the year before that.…

Facebook funds anti-bullying training in schools

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2017 - 11:31am
The tech giant will extend a scheme which trains young people to help those who suffer cyber-bullying. Who wants £25m... *cheers*... to trial 5G? *crickets chirping*

The Register - October 16, 2017 - 11:28am
If we start now, we might be better at it than Albania

The British government is looking for places to chuck £25m it has set aside for 5G trials.…

Wi-fi security flaw 'puts devices at risk of hacks'

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2017 - 11:17am
Researchers have revealed details of a major problem with the way wi-fi data is protected.

WPA2 security flaw puts almost every Wi-Fi device at risk of hijack, eavesdropping

ZDnet News - October 16, 2017 - 11:00am
Security experts have said the bug is a total breakdown of the WPA2 security protocol.

Matt Damon sci-fi comedy 'Downsizing' is a small wonder - CNET - News - October 16, 2017 - 10:54am
Honey, they shrunk Matt Damon in a hilariously surreal sci-fi comedy -- although they should have downsized the second half .

Aardman's 'Early Man' took Maisie Williams to her early days - CNET - News - October 16, 2017 - 10:40am
For 'Game of Thrones' star Maisie Williams, working with the Wallace and Gromit stop-motion animators was a homecoming in more ways than one.

SendGrid services are DOWN and OUT of action

The Register - October 16, 2017 - 10:26am
Tried logging in or signing up? Big bag of fail? Thought so

Anyone wanting to log in or sign up to cloud-based email marketing service SendGrid is out of luck as an unspecificed glitch has taken its services offline.…

Grant Shapps of coup shame fame stands by 'broadbad' research

The Register - October 16, 2017 - 9:44am
Or was it David Green or Sebastian Fox?

Interview Grant Shapps seems far from crestfallen after his disastrous attempt to lead a coup against UK Prime Minister Theresa May.…

Bloodhound Diary: Jet engine's stamp of approval

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2017 - 9:36am
World Land Speed record holder Andy Green describes the sensation of starting up the Bloodhound supersonic car for the first time.

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