The Daemon engine that has been in development for many years as part of the Unvanquished open-source game project released their long-awaited 0.52 beta ahead of the game’s next beta later in the week. Daemon was originally based on the open-source id Tech 3 game engine but in 2021 continues pushing ahead working on features like WebAssembly support and renderer enhancements…
It soothed this raging roomful of wannabe lawyers anyway. Who, Me? The oversized rear of Monday is obstructing our view of the receding weekend. Never mind, pour yourself a beverage, select a pastry and settle in for a morning with the Regomiser and another edition of Who, Me?…
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The New York Times: In an important step toward medical approval, MDMA, the illegal drug popularly known as Ecstasy or Molly, was shown to bring relief to those suffering from severe post-traumatic stress disorder when paired with talk therapy. Of the 90 people who took part in the new study, which is expected to be published later this month in Nature Medicine, those who received MDMA during therapy experienced a significantly greater reduction in the severity of their symptoms compared with those who received therapy and an inactive placebo. Two months after treatment, 67 percent of participants in the MDMA group no longer qualified for a diagnosis of PTSD, compared with 32 percent in the placebo group. MDMA produced no serious adverse side effects. Some participants temporarily experienced mild symptoms like nausea and loss of appetite.
Before MDMA-assisted therapy can be approved for therapeutic use, the Food and Drug Administration needs a second positive Phase 3 trial, which is currently underway with 100 participants. Approval could come as early as 2023. Mental health experts say that this research — the first Phase 3 trial conducted on psychedelic-assisted therapy — could pave the way for further studies on MDMA’s potential to help address other difficult-to-treat mental health conditions, including substance abuse, obsessive compulsive disorder, phobias, eating disorders, depression, end-of-life anxiety and social anxiety in autistic adults. And, mental health researchers say, these studies could also encourage additional research on other banned psychedelics, including psilocybin, LSD and mescaline. “This is a wonderful, fruitful time for discovery, because people are suddenly willing to consider these substances as therapeutics again, which hasn’t happened in 50 years,” said Jennifer Mitchell, a neuroscientist at the University of California, San Francisco, and lead author of the new study.
Akihabara News (Tokyo) — In the fifth episode of the Japan Startup Megaphone podcast, we spoke with our dai-senpai in this field, Tim Romero, a Tokyo-based author and entrepreneur best known for his Disrupting Japan podcast.
Romero has been on the Japan startup scene for nearly a quarter century, and his podcast now tends to pull in about 10,000 listeners per episode.
He explained that he chose the podcast format, as opposed to video, because it seemed less work intensive and better suited to facilitating conversations. Through the podcasts, he has strived to highlight unique aspects of Japanese culture through the lens of startup founders.
In the more than six years that he has been at it, the overall startup ecosystem in Japan has become much more supportive, and the society has become more understanding of young people who have chosen to take this unusual career path.
Romero is an optimist about the future prospects of the startup scene in Japan, though he sees a need for further development of global perspectives.
We also got his take on news media coverage of Japanese startups.
Sony’s next-generation virtual reality hardware for PlayStation 5 will include a number of fancy features and even some forward-thinking technologies that are not yet available on popular consumer VR headsets, according to a report on UploadVR.
Nike and PlayStation have enjoyed a years-long partnership where a bunch of their shoes have become all-time classics. Both the console and sneaker businesses being what they are, we are now inevitably about to get a whole bunch of Adidas x Xbox shoes to compete.
Now more than ever, we are living in a world where organizations are constantly bombarded by security breaches motivated by the acquisition of highly sensitive and confidential data which is highly valuable and makes for a huge financial reward.
Following Twitter’s lead, Facebook is trying out a new feature designed to encourage users to read a link before sharing it. TechCrunch reports: The test will reach 6% of Facebook’s Android users globally in a gradual rollout that aims to encourage “informed sharing” of news stories on the platform. Users can still easily click through to share a given story, but the idea is that by adding friction to the experience, people might rethink their original impulses to share the kind of inflammatory content that currently dominates on the platform.
The strategy demonstrates Facebook’s preference for a passive strategy of nudging people away from misinformation and toward its own verified resources on hot-button issues like COVID-19 and the 2020 election. While the jury is still out on how much of an impact this kind of gentle behavioral shaping can make on the misinformation epidemic, both Twitter and Facebook have also explored prompts that discourage users from posting abusive comments.
Elon Musk may have sent Dogecoin’s stock plummeting after he bombed on Saturday Night Live on May 8, but that doesn’t mean the Tesla and SpaceX CEO isn’t doing his part to boost the volatile cryptocurrency.
Over the weekend, a cyberattack by the Russia-based ransomware gang DarkSide managed to hamstring America’s largest oil pipeline, Colonial, threatening to choke off significant energy flows to the East Coast.
Amazon “seized and destroyed” over 2 million counterfeit products that sellers sent to Amazon warehouses in 2020 and “blocked more than 10 billion suspected bad listings before they were published in our store,” the company said in its first “Brand Protection Report.” Ars Technica reports: In 2020, “we seized and destroyed more than 2 million products sent to our fulfillment centers and that we detected as counterfeit before being sent to a customer,” Amazon’s report said. “In cases where counterfeit products are in our fulfillment centers, we separate the inventory and destroy those products so they are not resold elsewhere in the supply chain,” the report also said. Third-party sellers can also ship products directly to consumers instead of using Amazon’s shipping system. The 2 million fakes found in Amazon fulfillment centers would only account for counterfeit products from sellers using the “Fulfilled by Amazon” service.
The counterfeit problem got worse over the past year. “Throughout the pandemic, we’ve seen increased attempts by bad actors to commit fraud and offer counterfeit products,” Amazon VP Dharmesh Mehta wrote in a blog post yesterday. Amazon’s new report was meant to reassure legitimate sellers that their products won’t be counterfeited. While counterfeits remain a problem for unsuspecting Amazon customers, the e-commerce giant said that “fewer than 0.01 percent of all products sold on Amazon received a counterfeit complaint from customers” in 2020. Of course, people may buy and use counterfeit products without ever realizing they are fake or without reporting it to Amazon, so that percentage may not capture the extent of the problem.