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Industry & Technology

Amazon Echo Wall Clock is an old-school clock, with an Alexa twist - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 7:13pm
The online shopping giant is remaking all manner of home devices, from a microwave to, yes, the boring timepiece on your wall.

Amazon Echo speakers adding stereo pairing, better multi-room audio support - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 7:01pm
Echo speakers are getting a few new tricks.

Marvel's Kevin Feige taking over X-Men movie franchise - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 7:01pm
Will Deadpool join the Avengers? Disney CEO Bob Iger isn't saying yes, but he didn't say no.

The last nuclear reactors under construction in the US are facing opposition

Ars Technica - September 20, 2018 - 6:59pm

Enlarge / Vogtle unit 3. (credit: Georgia Power)

Two nuclear reactors are under construction at Vogtle's nuclear power plant in Georgia, and they are a lonely pair in a stagnating US nuclear industry. Now, leaders of municipalities and utilities that are on the hook to buy electricity from Vogtle's new reactors are saying they want the project stopped to save their customers from having to shoulder the cost burden.

The three major owners of the construction project are expected to vote on whether to keep it or cut losses in the coming days.

Costs for Vogtle and its sister reactors at the Summer nuclear power plant in South Carolina ballooned to well over their roughly $7 billion estimated cost, and when reactor-maker Westinghouse went bankrupt last year, the projects faced a choice: end construction and move on or keep on trucking in the hopes that further construction costs could be limited.

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Bing starts serving AMP pages as Google prepares to reduce its control

Ars Technica - September 20, 2018 - 6:45pm

Enlarge / Bing on a mobile device showing the AMP-powered carousel and an AMP story served from Bing's cache. (credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft's Bing search engine has started showing AMP pages to mobile searchers in the US. Pages using the proprietary tech will now be prominently displayed in search listings on the mobile website. Previously, Microsoft made limited use of AMP in some of its mobile apps but didn't use it on the Web.

AMP ("Accelerated Mobile Pages") is a project spearheaded by Google to improve the performance and embeddability of mobile content. It imposes tight restrictions on the scripting that pages can use, and it performs special handling of embedded images and media. To do this, Google uses a number of proprietary extensions to HTML, and AMP content all gets cached. Google serves AMP pages from its own servers, Bing uses Microsoft's servers, and Cloudflare also has an AMP caching service.

Though there is widespread acknowledgement that AMP is addressing real problems—the abundance of trackers, advertisements, and client-side scripts makes many webpages bandwidth-heavy and slow to load—many within the industry are unhappy at the proprietary, Google-controlled extensions, regarding them as anathema to the open Web.

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Amazon Music will let you ask Alexa for updates on new tracks - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 6:30pm
Tell Alexa to follow your favorite band and you'll know as soon as new music is released.

Pixelbook Tablet? Keyboard maker may have leaked Google's Chrome OS slate - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 6:29pm
Perhaps we'll be seeing a "Made by Google" tablet on Oct. 9.

Amazon Echo Dot gets a fabric makeover, better sound, still costs $50 - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 6:28pm
The tiny Dot is critical to Amazon’s mission to get Alexa into your home.

Internet regulator considered for UK

BBC Technology News - September 20, 2018 - 6:27pm
The government is considering "all options" to keep UK citizens "safe" online.

Apple Watch Series 4 review in progress: Looking good - CNET - Reviews - September 20, 2018 - 6:25pm
Larger screen, new watch faces and a promise of serious heart-rate tech. Here's why you might consider an upgrade.

Amazon Echo Input is a tiny $35 Dot for your own speakers - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 6:24pm
It's flat and comes in black or white.

Dealmaster: Take 25 percent off a bunch of popular Nintendo Switch games

Ars Technica - September 20, 2018 - 6:20pm

Enlarge (credit: TechBargains)

Greetings, Arsians! Courtesy of our friends at TechBargains, we have another round of deals to share. Today's list is headlined by a set of deals on high-profile Nintendo Switch games at Walmart and Amazon, including The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze, Splatoon 2, Kirby Star Allies, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, and Mario Tennis Aces. All of them are 25 percent off, which works out to a $10-15 discount for each.

Not every game up there will be to everybody's liking—the competitive online focus of Mario Tennis Aces is a far cry from cutesy puzzles of Captain Toad, for instance—and most Switch (or Wii U) owners have probably played at least a few of these already. But if you're in need of something new to play, all the above titles are at least worth checking out. Go have a look at our reviews if you're on the fence about one in particular.

The catch here is that these discounts only apply to the physical copies of each game. That shouldn't be a dealbreaker for most—you'll use up less of the Switch's meager 32GB of internal storage—but it's worth noting that Nintendo just added the ability to share Switch downloads across consoles. Still, given that these games are going for full price in the Nintendo eShop and are tied for new lows here, waiting a couple days and dealing with a cartridge may be worth it.

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Verizon's $180 GizmoWatch lets parents track kids' location and activity - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 6:16pm
It's the next best thing to microchipping.

Apple Watch Series 4's new watch faces, reviewed: Great start, but more, please - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 6:04pm
Commentary: Some stand out, but others aren't as different as you might expect.

Amazon is holding a surprise Echo Alexa event. We break it down (The 3:59, Ep. 461) - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 6:04pm
We walk through all the rumors, from microwaves to subwoofers and a new Echo Dot.

ESPN+ streaming service hits 1 million paid subscribers - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 6:01pm
Disney's first streaming service launched five months ago.

Emilia Clarke got the most perfect Game of Thrones tattoo - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 5:59pm
The Mother of Dragons will always remember her babies.

NSS Labs sues antivirus toolmakers, claims they quietly conspire to evade performance tests

The Register - September 20, 2018 - 5:45pm
Alleges CrowdStrike, Symantec, ESET, Anti-Malware Testing Standards Org collusion

NSS Labs has thrown a hand grenade into the always fractious but slightly obscure world of security product testing – by suing multiple vendors as well as an industry standards organisation.…

Walmart will use Oculus Go headsets to train employees in VR - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 5:39pm
The retailer is betting VR is an effective way to train workers in areas like customer service.

Leaked Google Home Hub could take on the Amazon Echo Show - CNET - News - September 20, 2018 - 5:36pm
Images and an FCC filing might show Google's take on a smart display.

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