AT&T and Sprint settle lawsuit over faux 5G branding

To say AT&T’s rivals were unhappy with its fake 5G branding is an understatement — Sprint even filed a lawsuit against the carrier, accusing it of “blatantly misleading customers.” The competitors must have hammered out a deal that’s acceptable…

Source: Engadget – AT&T and Sprint settle lawsuit over faux 5G branding

Google Staffers Say They Were Retaliated Against For Helping Organize 2018 Walkout

Two Google employees who helped to organize a labor walkout estimated to involve 20,000 workers in protest of the company’s mishandling of sexual harassment and assault cases in November 2018 have claimed Google retaliated against them, according to Wired.

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Source: Gizmodo – Google Staffers Say They Were Retaliated Against For Helping Organize 2018 Walkout

Intel SPMD Compiler 1.11 Released

Intel continues working on its SPMD compiler as part of their SPIR-V translator running on the CPU and other efforts. ISPC is the Intel SPMD Program Compiler and at the end of last week reached its version 1.11 milestone for this C variant compiler designed for single program, multiple data programming…

Source: Phoronix – Intel SPMD Compiler 1.11 Released

Greenland Is Melting Even Faster Than Experts Thought, Study Finds

An anonymous reader quotes a report from CNN: Climate change is eliminating giant chunks of ice from Greenland at such a speed that the melt has already made a significant contribution to sea level rise, according to a new study. With global warming, the island will lose much more, threatening coastal cities around the world. Forty percent to 50% of the planet’s population is in cities that are vulnerable to sea rise, and the study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences is bad news for places like New York, Miami, Los Angeles, Tokyo and Mumbai.

Researchers reconstructed the mass balance of the Greenland Ice Sheet by comparing estimates of the amount of ice that has been discharged into the ocean with the accumulation of snowfall in the drainage basins in the country’s interior for the past 46 years. The researchers found that the rate of ice loss has increased sixfold since then — even faster than scientists thought. Since 1972, ice loss from Greenland alone has added 13.7 millimeters (about half an inch) to the global sea level, the study estimates. The island’s ice sheet is the leading source of water added to the ocean every year.

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Source: Slashdot – Greenland Is Melting Even Faster Than Experts Thought, Study Finds

Facebook's New Chief Lawyer Is a Trump Official Who Helped Create the Patriot Act

Facebook has picked up another government official—this time a legal adviser to Donald Trump’s State Department who once helped craft the much-maligned Patriot Act—to beef up its team, Bloomberg reported on Monday.

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Source: Gizmodo – Facebook’s New Chief Lawyer Is a Trump Official Who Helped Create the Patriot Act

Natalie Portman will narrate a dolphin documentary for Disney+

Disney is clearly determined to flex its star power (and giant budget) ahead of its streaming service launch on November 12th. The company has announced that Natalie Portman will narrate Dolphin Reef, a nature movie that will debut alongside Disney+…

Source: Engadget – Natalie Portman will narrate a dolphin documentary for Disney+

Windows 10’s “Sets” tabbed windows will never see the light of day

Microsoft's inspiration, evidently.

Enlarge / Microsoft’s inspiration, evidently. (credit: Jerry / Flickr)

For two periods last year, those using preview builds of Windows 10 could access to a feature called Sets: a tabbed interface that was eventually to allow tabs to be put in the titlebar of just about any window. These tabs would allow both multiple copies of the same application to be combined—a tabbed Explorer or Command Prompt, say—and multiple disparate windows to be grouped—combining, say, a browser window containing research with the Word window. However, both times the feature was enabled only for a few weeks, so Microsoft could gather data, before disabling it. Sets aren’t in the Windows 10 May 2019 update.

It seems now that Sets are unlikely to ever materialize. Rich Turner, who oversees Microsoft’s revamping of the Windows command-line infrastructure and the Windows Subsystem for Linux tweeted that the interface “is no more.” Having everything tabbed everywhere isn’t going to happen. Adding tabs specifically for command-line windows is, however, “high on [Microsoft’s] to do list.”

There was initially some confusion that the tweet might have meant that some other system-wide approach to tabs was going to be used. But Turner clarified today that the command-line tabs will be purpose-built for command-line windows, not a general feature for the entire operating system.

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Source: Ars Technica – Windows 10’s “Sets” tabbed windows will never see the light of day

'Longevity Gene' Responsible For More Efficient DNA Repair

Researchers at the University of Rochester have discovered that the gene “sirtuin 6” (SIRT6) is responsible for more efficient DNA repair in species with longer lifespans. “The research illuminates new targets for anti-aging interventions and could help prevent age-related diseases,” reports Phys.Org From the report: SIRT6 is often called the “longevity gene” because of its important role in organizing proteins and recruiting enzymes that repair broken DNA; additionally, mice without the gene age prematurely, while mice with extra copies live longer. The researchers hypothesized that if more efficient DNA repair is required for a longer lifespan, organisms with longer lifespans may have evolved more efficient DNA repair regulators. Is SIRT6 activity therefore enhanced in longer-lived species?

To test this theory, the researchers analyzed DNA repair in 18 rodent species with lifespans ranging from 3 years (mice) to 32 years (naked mole rats and beavers). They found that the rodents with longer lifespans also experience more efficient DNA repair because the products of their SIRT6 genes — the SIRT6 proteins — are more potent. That is, SIRT6 is not the same in every species. Instead, the gene has co-evolved with longevity, becoming more efficient so that species with a stronger SIRT6 live longer. The researchers then analyzed the molecular differences between the weaker SIRT6 protein found in mice versus the stronger SIRT6 found in beavers. They identified five amino acids responsible for making the stronger SIRT6 protein “more active in repairing DNA and better at enzyme functions.” When the researchers inserted beaver and mouse SIRT6 into human cells, the beaver SIRT6 better reduced stress-induced DNA damage compared to when researchers inserted the mouse SIRT6. The beaver SIRT6 also better increased the lifespan of fruit flies versus fruit flies with mouse SIRT6. The study has been published in the journal Cell.

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Source: Slashdot – ‘Longevity Gene’ Responsible For More Efficient DNA Repair

Employees Call On Microsoft To Protect GitHub From China Censors

The GitHub repository at “996.ICU” in China has been calling out tech companies in the country that pressure their employees to work from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., six days per week. “Since it went up last month, the page has been starred over 229,000 times, making it one of the most popular GitHub repositories on the site,” reports PC Magazine. “But now a group of Microsoft employees are worried the Chinese government will force their employer to take the page down. So in response, they’ve been circulating an internal letter, urging Microsoft to stand up to any potential pressure to censor the GitHub page.” From the report: “We encourage Microsoft and GitHub, companies which firmly believe in a healthy work-life balance, to keep the 996.ICU GitHub repository uncensored and available to everyone,” reads the letter, which was shared with PCMag and started circulating internally on Sunday.

The GitHub repository now hosts a list of over 140 Chinese companies that allegedly demand their employees work 60 hours a week. Many foreign media outlets have also reported on the protest page. But reportedly, some attempts have been made to censor mention of the 996.ICU repository within China. Domestic browsers from Tencent, Qihoo 360, and Xiaomi recently prevented users from visiting the GitHub page, according to Abacus. It’s why a group of Microsoft employees based largely in the U.S. decided to circulate a protest letter calling on Redmond to protect the GitHub page from censorship. Microsoft hasn’t commented, but the company’s two other web properties, Bing and LinkedIn, “have been forced to comply with the country’s strict censorship demands,” the report notes.

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Source: Slashdot – Employees Call On Microsoft To Protect GitHub From China Censors

MIT scientists 'work out' synthetic hydrogels to make them stronger

Your muscles are soft, pliable, and can resist fatigue after thousands of repetitive movements. Researchers at MIT have found a way to make synthetic hydrogels act like muscles by putting them through a vigorous workout. After being mechanically trai…

Source: Engadget – MIT scientists ‘work out’ synthetic hydrogels to make them stronger

Last Night's Game of Thrones Song Might Be More Important Than You Think

The second episode of Game of Thrones final season brought with it a sense of calm before the storm—unless you so happen to be A Song of Ice and Fire theorist, because the episode’s use of a particular element from the books might have got your head spinning a little bit.

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Source: io9 – Last Night’s Game of Thrones Song Might Be More Important Than You Think

Tesla Will Allow Aggressive Autopilot Mode With 'Slight Chance of a Fender Bender'

During Tesla’s “Autonomy Investor Day” today, Elon Musk said that the company will someday allow drivers to select aggressive modes of its Autopilot driver assistance system that have a “slight chance of a fender bender.” “Musk didn’t say when Tesla might roll out that option, only that the company would have to have “higher confidence” in Autopilot’s capabilities before allowing it to happen,” reports The Verge. From the report: “Do you want to have a nonzero chance of a fender bender on freeway traffic?” Musk asked at the event, which was for investors in the company. He dubbed it “LA traffic mode,” because “unfortunately, [it’s] the only way to navigate LA traffic.” Tesla already allows its owners to select a “Mad Max” setting for Navigate on Autopilot, which is a feature that handles highway driving from on-ramp to off-ramp. The Mad Max setting makes quicker lane changes than if the car is in “Mild” or “Average” modes. Musk suggested Tesla will eventually allow drivers to choose “gradually more aggressive behavior” by “dial[ing] the setting up.” Musk also said Tesla’s full self-driving computer is now in all new Model 3, X and S vehicles, and a next-gen chip that’s “three times better” than the current system is already “halfway done.”

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Source: Slashdot – Tesla Will Allow Aggressive Autopilot Mode With ‘Slight Chance of a Fender Bender’

NIH, FBI Accuse Scientists In US of Sending IP To China, Running Shadow Labs

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas has forced out three senior researchers with ties to China. The move comes amid nationwide investigations by federal officials into whether researchers are pilfering intellectual property from U.S. research institutions and running “shadow laboratories” abroad, according to a joint report by Science magazine and the Houston Chronicle. The National Institutes of Health began sending letters to the elite cancer center last August regarding the conduct of five researchers there. The letters discussed “serious violations” of NIH policies, including leaking confidential NIH grant proposals under peer review to individuals in China, failing to disclose financial ties in China, and other conflicts of interest. MD Anderson moved to terminate three of those researchers, two of whom resigned during the termination process. The center cleared the fourth and is still investigation the fifth. MD Anderson isn’t the only institution dealing with this issue. The NIH sent similar letters to at least three other institutions, according to reporting by Science and the Houston Chronicle. Some advocates expressed concern over what they considered racial profiling while other researchers worried that such efforts to protect intellectual property would actually backfire. “These are the top talents foreign countries have been trying to recruit unsuccessfully,” said Steven Pei, a University of Houston professor critical of the actions by MD Anderson. “We are now pushing them out of the Texas Medical Center, out of Houston, out of Texas, and out of the U.S. It seems we’re helping foreign countries to accomplish what they could not do by themselves. We are hurting the American competitiveness.”

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Source: Slashdot – NIH, FBI Accuse Scientists In US of Sending IP To China, Running Shadow Labs

HBO Greenlights the Space Tourism Comedy Avenue 5

We’re going to need something to fill that giant comedic hole Tormund’s heavy milk drinking will leave behind, why not find it in space? HBO has given a series order to Avenue 5, a sci-fi comedy starring Rebecca Front (Humans) and Hugh Laurie (House). The latter will play the captain of a cruise ship…in a future…

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Source: io9 – HBO Greenlights the Space Tourism Comedy Avenue 5

GlobalFoundries to Sell 300mm New York Fab to ON Semiconductor

GlobalFoundries and ON Semiconductor on Monday signed a definitive agreement for the latter to buy GlobalFoundries’ 300-mm fab in East Fishkill, New York. In addition to the production facility, ON Semiconductor will get a team of experienced engineers from GlobalFoundries as well as a technology transfer, development, and license agreements.



Source: AnandTech – GlobalFoundries to Sell 300mm New York Fab to ON Semiconductor