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Twitter tweaks rules after calls to ban Trump

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2019 - 1:59pm
Twitter clarifies how the viral spread of world leaders' tweets could be limited in future

Pixel 4 hands-on—Thumbs up for 90Hz, thumbs down for Project Soli

Ars Technica - October 16, 2019 - 1:00pm

NEW YORK—Google's big hardware event wrapped up yesterday, and, after a brief session with the Pixel 4, I'm back to report my initial findings. It's a phone.

The feel of the Pixel 4 varies greatly based on the color. The black version is the most boring, with a regular glossy, greasy, glass back. The orange and white versions are where things get interesting, though. These have the whole back covered in a soft-touch material (which is still glass) that looks and feels great. It's reminiscent of the soft-touch back that was on the Pixel 3 but with a number of improvements. First, you can't dent it with a fingernail. It feels a lot stronger and tougher than the Pixel 3 back, while still being soft and grippy to the touch. Second, it doesn't seem to absorb and show fingerprint grease at the rate of the Pixel 3 back. It's interesting that the orange and white versions get this soft-touch treatment, while the black version gets a glossy back. The black version is the one with so many problems with the soft-touch coating last year.

The white version, in particular, looks great from the back. It has an alternating white-and-black color scheme: the sides have a grippy black soft-touch coating, the back is a brilliant white, and the square camera bump is black. It's a lovely color scheme. The Google "G" on the back is the only thing that doesn't get a soft-touch coating. There is actual depth to the G, making it seem like it was masked off when the soft-touch coating was applied, leaving it inset on the phone back, exposing the colored white glass.

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In 2019, multiple open source companies changed course—is it the right move?

Ars Technica - October 16, 2019 - 12:30pm

Enlarge / Stock photos continue to be a gift to the world. Maybe it's sometimes on par with open-source software. (credit: cnythzl / Getty Images)

Free and open source software enables the world as we know it in 2019. From Web servers to kiosks to the big data algorithms mining your Facebook feed, nearly every computer system you interact with runs, at least in part, on free software. And in the larger tech industry, free software has given rise to a galaxy of startups and enabled the largest software acquisition in the history of the world.

Free software is a gift, a gift that made the world as we know it possible. And from the start, it seemed like an astounding gift to give. So astounding in fact that it initially made businesses unaccustomed to this kind of generosity uncomfortable. These companies weren't unwilling to use free software, it was simply too radical and by extension too political. It had to be renamed: "open source."

Once that happened, open source software took over the world.

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Unmanned ship to go on 400-year-old journey across the Atlantic

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2019 - 12:01pm
UK-based team to chart unprecedented waters with fully autonomous sea journey.

Germany will not bar Huawei from its 5G networks

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2019 - 10:45am
The ruling is welcomed by the Chinese company, which warned against "politicising security".

Why scientists are ‘listening’ to the Matterhorn

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2019 - 8:00am
Sparked by an unexpected rockfall, researchers placed sensors on the mountain to monitor the site.

Google Discontinues Daydream VR

Slashdot - October 16, 2019 - 6:45am
Categories: Geek, Opinion

After a decade of League of Legends, Riot to expand with new games

Ars Technica - October 16, 2019 - 4:34am

For a decade now, Riot Games has been known almost exclusively for League of Legends, the ultra-successful MOBA that can still attract 8 million simultaneous players at its daily peak. But in an anniversary livestream tonight, the company confirmed a veritable smorgasbord of new gaming and entertainment projects for the first time, all set in the same League of Legends universe.

Those projects include:

  • League of Legends: Wild Rift: A new version of the MOBA built from the ground up with a twin-stick control scheme designed for consoles and mobile phones and a focus on 15- to 18-minute games. Due on mobile phones in 2020.
  • Legends of Runeterra: A competitive card game set in the League of Legends universe. Cards will not be unlocked via randomized pack purchases, Riot said.
  • "Project A": Described as "a stylish, competitive, character-based tactical shooter for PC," this sounds like Riot's answer to Overwatch or Team Fortress 2. More information is expected next year.
  • "Project L": "A fighting game set in the LoL universe" that's "in early stage development." Likely being developed by the remnants of Rising Thunder developer Radiant Entertainment, which Riot acquired in 2016.
  • "Project F": "A very early development project that explores the possibilities of traversing the world of Runeterra with your friends," as Riot describes it. Brief streamed footage looked reminiscent of Diablo and other third-person action RPGs.
  • League of Legends Esports Manager: A team management game that lets players manage a team of simulated LoL pros that sounds similar to the Football Manager series. Planned to launch with League of Legends Pro League support next year.
  • Teamfight Tactics Mobile: A smartphone port of Riot's recent autobattler game mode, planned for the first quarter of 2020.
  • Arcane: An animated series set in the League of Legends universe, planned for 2020.
  • League of Legends Origins: A "feature-length documentary" highlighting the game's growth, available now on Netflix.

The rapid project expansion, after a full decade of existence as a de facto single-game company puts the Tencent-owned conglomerate and its 2,500 employees immediately in a class with multi-franchise publishing behemoths like Activision Blizzard, Electronic Arts, and Ubisoft. Unlike those companies, though, Riot is currently focusing all of its efforts on games in a single shared universe, building on ten years of lore and character design as it attempts to rapidly expand to other popular genres.

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'We Need a New Capitalism'

Slashdot - October 16, 2019 - 2:15am
Categories: Geek, Opinion

Comic for October 15, 2019

Dilbert - October 16, 2019 - 12:59am
Categories: Geek

'Send nudes' Boohoo ad banned after complaint

BBC Technology News - October 16, 2019 - 12:01am
The advert for clothes in skin tones was not socially responsible, the UK advertising watchdog rules.

Man agrees to pay $25,000 for abusing YouTube’s takedown system

Ars Technica - October 15, 2019 - 11:15pm

Enlarge (credit: Toolstotal)

A Nebraska man has agreed to pay $25,000 for abusing YouTube's takedown system under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, YouTube said in an emailed statement Tuesday. The man, Christopher Brady, also signed a public apology admitting to "falsely claiming that material uploaded by YouTube users infringed my copyrights."

In reality, Brady didn't have any legitimate claim to the material, YouTube charged in an August lawsuit. YouTube said that Brady targeted at least three well-known Minecraft streamers with a series of takedown requests.

Under YouTube's rules, a series of three takedown requests in a short period of time can lead to the loss of a YouTube account—a serious penalty for someone who has built up a large following on the platform. According to YouTube, Brady would submit two bogus takedown requests against a target's videos. Then he would send the victim a message demanding payments—$150 in one case, $300 in another—to prevent the submission of a third request. For some reason, Brady allegedly offered victims a discount if they paid with bitcoin.

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Should Facebook Ban Campaign Ads?

Slashdot - October 15, 2019 - 11:15pm
Categories: Geek, Opinion

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