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A Hundred UK Companies Sign Up For Four-day Week With No Loss of Pay
AmiMoJo writes: A hundred UK companies have signed up for a permanent four-day working week for all their employees with no loss of pay, a milestone in the campaign to fundamentally change Britain’s approach to work. The 100 companies employ 2,600 staff – a tiny fraction of the UK’s working population – but the 4 Day Week Campaign group … ⌘ Read more

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Frontier Airlines Gets Rid of Telephone Customer Service
Say goodbye to the airline call center – at least at Frontier Airlines. From a report: The budget carrier has completed its transition to online, mobile and text support, which enables it to ensure that customers get “the information they need as expeditiously and efficiently as possible,” spokeswoman Jennifer de la Cruz told CNBC in an e-mailed statement. Passeng … ⌘ Read more

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It’s Not Your Imagination. Shopping on Amazon Has Gotten Worse
“When you search for a product on Amazon, you may not realize that most of what you see at first is advertising,” reports the Washington Post’s technology columnist, introducing some eye-opening interactive graphics. (Alternate URL here.)

The Post’s graphics show that Amazon’s first six search results — basically everything on their first screen — were al … ⌘ Read more

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Cheeky New Book Identifies 26 Lines of Code That Changed the World
Long-time Slashdot reader destinyland writes: A new book identifies “26 Lines of Code That Changed the World.” But its cheeky title also incorporates a comment from Unix’s source code — “You are Not Expected to Understand This”. From a new interview with the book’s editor:

With chapter titles like “Wear this code, go to jail” and “the code t … ⌘ Read more

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Apple Hobbled Protesters’ Tool in China Weeks Before Widespread Protests
“China’s control of the internet has become so strong that dissidents must cling to any crack in the so-called Great Firewall,” writes Qz.

But as anti-government protests sprung up on campuses and cities in China over the weekend, Qz reminds us that “the country’s most widespread show of public dissent in decades will have to man … ⌘ Read more

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US Goverment Investigating Real-Estate Tech Company Accused of Helping Landlords Collude
The anti-trust division of America’s Department of Justice “has reportedly opened up an investigation into RealPage, the real estate technology company accused of contributing to higher-than-normal rent prices,” reports the Verge.

ProPublica writes that the investigation explores “whether rent-sett … ⌘ Read more

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Is Everyone Still Getting Remote Work Wrong?
ZDNet asks: why is everyone getting remote working wrong?

Researchers at tech analyst Gartner believe a rigid requirement to return to offices is a mistake. But the researchers also believe so-called “hybrid” schedules often are also flawed:

“Most of those work models delivered below-average outcomes,” the research found, and the common factor was some kind of rigid on-site requirement. … ⌘ Read more

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Workers at Amazon’s Largest Air Hub in the World Push for a Union
“Amazon workers at the air hub outside the Cincinnati Northern Kentucky international airport, Amazon’s largest air hub in the world, are pushing to organize a union,” reports the Guardian, “in the latest effort to mobilize workers at the tech company.”

Workers say they are dissatisfied with annual wage increases this year. About 400 of them have si … ⌘ Read more

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Small Study Finds Computer Repair Shops Accessed Personal Data - And Sometimes Even Copied It
Ars Technica reports on what happened when researchers at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada, left laptops overnight at 12 computer repair shops — and then recovered logs after receiving their repairs:

The logs showed that technicians from six of the locations had accessed persona … ⌘ Read more

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Protests Erupting Across China
“Protesters clash with police as unrest rocks cities across China,” reads CNN’s headline. The Guardian calls it “the biggest wave of civil disobedience on the mainland since Xi Jinping assumed power a decade ago,” noting one crowd numbered over 1,000 protesters. “Crowdsourced lists on social media claim protests have been documented at as many as 50 Chinese universities over the weekend.”

Looking back over the la … ⌘ Read more

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Linux Kernel Gets More Infrastructure for Rust, Increasing Interest in the Language
Linux 6.1 (released last month) included what Linus Torvalds described as “initial Rust scaffolding,” remembers this update from SD Times But now, “work has already been done since the 6.1 release to add more infrastructure for Rust in the kernel, though still none of the code interacts with any C code.
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‘How Washington Chased Huawei Out of Europe’
Huawei “is giving up on Europe,” writes Politico, saying the Chinese telecommunications company is “retrenching its European operations and putting its ambitions for global leadership on ice.”

“The reasons for doing this have little to do with the company’s commercial potential — Huawei is still able to offer cutting-edge technology at lower costs than its competitors — and everything to … ⌘ Read more

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Scientists Say Webb Telescope’s New Exoplanet Data is ‘a Game Changer’
“The powerful Webb telescope doesn’t need to take pretty pictures to revolutionize our grasp of the cosmos,” notes Mashable.

It’s “a game changer,” says one of the researchers. They’re part of what the Webb telescope’s web site calls “an international team numbering in the hundreds” that “independently analysed data from four of the … ⌘ Read more

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Meta Claims US Military Linked to Online Propaganda Campaign
From the BBC:

“Individuals associated with the U.S. military” are linked to an online propaganda campaign, Meta’s latest adversarial-threat report says….

On Facebook, 39 accounts, 16 pages, and two groups were removed, as well as 26 accounts on Instagram, for violating the platforms’ policy against “coordinated inauthentic behaviour”. “This network o … ⌘ Read more

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James Cameron Almost Visited the Space Station - and Helped Design a Camera Now Used On Mars
James Cameron once got himself onto the list for a potential visit to International Space Station. It’s just one of several surprising scientific achievements buried deep inside GQ’s massive 7,000-word profile:

After James Cameron’s Avatar came out in 2009 and made $2.7 billion, th … ⌘ Read more

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Automakers Are Locking the Aftermarket Out of Engine Control Units
This month Road & Track looked at “increased cybersecurity measures” automakers are adding to car systems — and how it’s affecting the vendors of “aftermarket” enhancements:

As our vehicles start to integrate more complex systems such as Advanced Driver Assist Systems and over-the-air updates, automakers are growing wary of what potential ba … ⌘ Read more

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CNN: NASA Discovery Reveals There May Have Been Life on Mars
“News from Mars,” CNN reported Friday. “Not just that water was there, perhaps millions of years ago, but also these organic compounds.”

In an interview with the head of Earth Sciences collections at the UK’s Natural History Musem, CNN asked the million-dollar question. “How much more likely, if you believe so, that that makes it that there was life … ⌘ Read more

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Neighbors Build Their Own Lightning-fast Fiber-optic Network
Somewhere in Silicon Valley is a man “standing up to internet giants Comcast and AT&T,” reports the Mercury News. (Alternate URL here.)

“Comcast told him it would cost $17,000 to speed up his internet. He rallied 41 South Bay neighbors to build their own lightning-fast fiber-optic network instead “

Tech-rich but internet-poor, residents of the Silicon … ⌘ Read more

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Will Made-in-China EV’s Bring New Competition for Automakers?
The Washington Post reports:
China is already a huge manufacturer of electric vehicles for its own market, and it is increasingly making EVs for overseas buyers, too. Made-in-China EVs are hitting U.S. dealerships and European auto shows, providing new competition to Western and Japanese automakers that have long dominated the global vehicle market.
Exam … ⌘ Read more

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A Light-powered Catalyst Could Be Key For Hydrogen Economy
“Rice University researchers have engineered a key light-activated nanomaterial for the hydrogen economy,” the University announced this week.

“Using only inexpensive raw materials, a team from Rice’s Laboratory for Nanophotonics, Syzygy Plasmonics Inc. and Princeton University’s Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment created a scalable catalys … ⌘ Read more

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Telnet Gets Stubborn Sony Camera Under Control
Hackaday writes
According to [Venn Stone], technical producer over at Linux GameCast, the Sony a5000 is still a solid option for those looking to shoot 1080p video despite being released back in 2014. But while the camera is lightweight and affordable, it does have some annoying quirks — namely an overlay on the HDMI output (as seen in the image above) that can’t be turned off usi … ⌘ Read more

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SpaceX Launches Dragon Cargo Ship (and Lands Falcon 9 Rocket) For ISS Resupply Mission
About an hour ago SpaceX began tweeting video highlights of their latest launch — a NASA-commissioned resupply mission for the International Space Station.

- “Liftoff!”

- “Falcon 9’s first stage has landed on the Just Read the Instructions droneship”

- “Dragon separation confirmed; autonomous doc … ⌘ Read more

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Violent Revolt at World’s Largest iPhone Factory in China Could Strain iPhone Supply
“A violent workers’ revolt at the world’s largest iPhone factory this week in central China is further scrambling Apple’s strained supply,” reports CNN, adding that the revolt is also “highlighting how the country’s stringent zero-Covid policy is hurting global technology firms.”

The troubles started last m … ⌘ Read more

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Why the Internet Invented a Fake Martin Scorsese Film Called ‘Goncharov’
“People just seem to really enjoy coming together to pretend fake things are real,” writes the Guardian.

“Thousands of Tumblr users have been making posters, soundtracks, drawings and fan fiction for a 1973 Scorsese film starring Robert De Niro — but it never existed.”

Released in 1973, the little-seen Scorsese flick star … ⌘ Read more

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Free Software Foundation Publishes Its 2022 ‘Ethical Tech Giving Guide’
For the last thirteen years the Free Software Foundation has published its Ethical Tech Giving Guide, notes a recent FSF blog post. “The right to determine what a device you’ve purchased does or doesn’t do is something too valuable to lose.”

Or, as they put it in the guide:

It’s time to reclaim our freedom from the abuse of multinat … ⌘ Read more

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‘Partner-Swapping, Pills…’ NY Post Investigates Sam Bankman-Fried’s ‘FTX Party House’
Are we missing some clarifying details in the saga of Sam Bankman-Fried? The New York Post seems to think so, writing among other things, that inside a glamorous Bahamas penthouse, 10 roommates became “a group of financial renegades that dropped speed, blithely swapped in and out of relationships with one ano … ⌘ Read more

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The US Bans Huawei, ZTE Telecommunications Equipment Sales Over Chinese Spying Fears
The U.S. government “has banned approvals of new telecommunications equipment from China’s Huawei Technologies and ZTE,” reports CNN, “because they pose ‘an unacceptable risk’ to US national security.”

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission said on Friday it had adopted the final rules, which also bar th … ⌘ Read more

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South Korean Capital Launches Self-Driving Bus Experiment
South Korea’s capital launched its first self-driving bus route on Friday, part of an experiment which engineers said aims to make people feel more comfortable with driverless vehicles on the roads. From a report: The new vehicle does not look like a regular bus and has rounded edges along with large windows that make it appear more like a toy than a technolog … ⌘ Read more

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Indian Actor Wins Court Order for His Personality Rights
Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan won interim protection of his personality and celebrity rights from the Delhi High Court Friday. From a report: The court barred not just identified entities from using Bachchan’s persona, without his consent, but also passed a John Doe order, or an order against world-at-large, from infringing his personality rights. The lawsuit … ⌘ Read more

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Binance Releases Proof-of-Reserves System
Binance has released its proof-of-reserves system, starting with bitcoin, in order to show that the exchange is healthy and solvent. From a report: This comes just weeks after rival exchange FTX collapsed, after seemingly swapping user funds for other, more illiquid tokens – eventually leading to a liquidity crisis. Binance’s goal is to show that it holds its users’ assets in the same tokens tha … ⌘ Read more

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EU Allows Smartphones During Flights
Within the European Union, airlines will be able to install the latest 5G technology on their aircraft, allowing passengers to use their smartphones and other connected devices just as they do on the ground. From a report: The European Commission has adapted the legislation on mobile communications to the most modern standards. As a result, 5G coverage can also be made available on aircraft. “The sk … ⌘ Read more

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Apple Engineer Says Lossless Isn’t the Be-all And End-all of Audio Quality
Despite Apple Music supporting lossless streaming, wireless AirPods only support lossy Bluetooth codecs. Apple engineer Esge Andersen tells WhatHiFi that’s not really an issue: “We want to push the sound quality forward, and we can do that with a lot of other elements. We don’t think that the codec currently is the limitation o … ⌘ Read more

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Stable Diffusion Made Copying Artists and Generating Porn Harder
AmiMoJo writes: Users of AI image generator Stable Diffusion are angry about an update to the software that “nerfs” its ability to generate NSFW output and pictures in the style of specific artists. Stability AI, the company that funds and disseminates the software, announced Stable Diffusion Version 2 early this morning European time. The update … ⌘ Read more

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Netflix is Working on ‘Brand-New AAA PC Game’
Netflix has put up more than a dozen job listings on its website for Netflix Games Studio’s Los Angeles office. From a report: These listings give us a few hints about the company’s plans for the new studio. In particular, Netflix is hiring a game director to work on “a brand-new AAA PC game.” Last month at TechCrunch Disrupt, Netflix VP of Gaming Mike Verdu originally announced that h … ⌘ Read more

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Universal Flu Vaccine May Be Available Within Two Years, Says Scientist
A universal flu vaccine that protects against all strains of the virus could be available in the next two years, according to a leading scientist. From a report: An experimental vaccine based on the same mRNA technology used in the highly successful Covid jabs was found to protect mice and ferrets against severe influenza, paving … ⌘ Read more

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The Endless Quest For a Better Mousetrap
Inventors have been refining them for centuries. What are they trying to achieve? From a report: Today, there are only a few kinds of mousetraps available at a typical hardware store: snap traps, glue traps, electric traps, bucket traps, and live-capture traps. And yet, inventors have filed more than forty-five hundred U.S. patents for animal traps, about a thousand of which are specifically re … ⌘ Read more

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UK Bans Chinese Surveillance Gear From Sensitive State Premises
The UK government will no longer deploy surveillance equipment made by Chinese companies at sites it considers sensitive, minister Oliver Dowden said in a statement Thursday. From a report: “Since security considerations are always paramount around these sites, we are taking action now to prevent any security risks materialising,” Dowden said. The g … ⌘ Read more

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Yandex Parent To Review Ownership of Russian Tech Giant, Seek Divestment
Russian internet giant Yandex’s Dutch holding company on Friday said it planned to divest ownership and control of most of Yandex Group, with the international divisions of some services to be developed outside Russia. From a report: Yandex N.V. said it had started a “strategic process to review options to restructure the group’s o … ⌘ Read more

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UK To Criminalize Deepfake Porn Sharing Without Consent
Brace for yet another expansion to the UK’s Online Safety Bill: The Ministry of Justice has announced changes to the law which are aimed at protecting victims of revenge porn, pornographic deepfakes and other abuses related to the taking and sharing of intimate imagery without consent – in a crackdown on a type of abuse that disproportionately affects women and g … ⌘ Read more

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Infura Collecting MetaMask Users’ IP, Ethereum Addresses After Privacy Policy Update
ConsenSys has informed users that it is set to collect additional data from those using its popular Infrura tool, attracting criticism on social media in the process. From a report: Infura is an API-based tool that allows users to connect their application to the Ethereum network, which provides the basis for … ⌘ Read more

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Two Films Hit Theaters, but Netflix Remains Committed To Streaming
Netflix agreed to some exclusive theatrical distribution for “Glass Onion” and “Matilda the Musical,” but it’s not clear exhibitors will get much more. From a report: “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery,” the much-anticipated follow-up to the 2019 sleeper hit directed by Rian Johnson, was supposed to be the moment Netflix crossed the R … ⌘ Read more

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Amazon To Shut Down Its Online Learning Platform in India
Amazon will be shutting down Amazon Academy, an online learning platform it launched in India for high-school students last year. From a report: The retailer says it will wind down the edtech service in the country in a phased manner starting August 2023. Those who signed up for the current academic batch will receive a full refund, it said. Amazon officially … ⌘ Read more

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Brazilian Regulator Seizes iPhones From Retail Stores as Apple Fails To Comply With Charger Requirement
The Brazilian Ministry of Justice ordered in September the suspension of iPhone sales in the country after concluding that Apple harms consumers by not offering the power adapter included with the device. Even after million-dollar fines, Apple still fails to comply wit … ⌘ Read more

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Intel Officially Introduces Pay-As-You-Go Chip Licensing
Intel has officially revealed its Intel On Demand program that will activate select accelerators and features of the company’s upcoming Xeon Scalable Sapphire Rapids processor. The new pay-as-you-go program will allow Intel to reduce the number of SKUs it ships while still capitalizing on the technologies it has to offer. From a report: Furthermore, its clients … ⌘ Read more

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FDA Approves Most Expensive Drug Ever, a $3.5 Million-per-Dose Gene Therapy For Hemophilia B
U.S. health regulators this week approved the first gene therapy for hemophilia, a $3.5 million one-time treatment for the blood-clotting disorder. From a report: The Food and Drug Administration cleared Hemgenix, an IV treatment for adults with hemophilia B, the less common form of the gene … ⌘ Read more

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Google’s Secret New Project Teaches AI To Write and Fix Code
Google is working on a secretive project that uses machine learning to train code to write, fix, and update itself. From a report: This project is part of a broader push by Google into so-called generative artificial intelligence, which uses algorithms to create images, videos, code, and more. It could have profound implications for the company’s fu … ⌘ Read more

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Google Says Google and Other Android Manufacturers Haven’t Patched Security Flaws
Google has disclosed several security flaws for phones that have Mali GPUs, such as those with Exynos chipsets. From a report: The company’s Project Zero team says it flagged the problems to ARM (which produces the GPUs) back in the summer. ARM resolved the issues on its end in July and August. However, smartphone … ⌘ Read more

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Senators Alarmed Over Potential Chinese Drone Spy Threat
Hundreds of Chinese-manufactured drones have been detected in restricted airspace over Washington, D.C., in recent months, a trend that national security agencies fear could become a new means for foreign espionage. From a report: The recreational drones made by Chinese company DJI, which are designed with “geofencing” restrictions to keep them out of sensitive … ⌘ Read more

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EU Countries Back Billion-Euro Chip Plan Ahead of Talks With Lawmakers
EU countries agreed to a 45-billion-euro ($46.6 billion) plan to fund the production of chips, putting the 27-country bloc a step closer to its goal of reducing its reliance on U.S. and Asian manufacturers. From a report: EU envoys unanimously backed an amended version of the European Commission’s proposal, the Czech Republic which hol … ⌘ Read more

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