In recent years, few emoji have caused as big of a stir as the gun — both for what it looks like and what it represents, or represented, at least.The pistol was released as part of Unicode 6.0, the first standard to support emoji.At the time, almost every service rendered the emoji as an actual gun — a revolver or, in Google’s case, a gold-plated blunderbuss.Microsoft was the only outlier, showing a funky alien ray gun instead, though it eventually changed this to a revolver.The emoji has always had a bit of a negative connotation, just like the real-world item it represents, and there are numerous cases where sending it was considered a grave threat.In 2015, a teenager in Brooklyn was arrested for, among other things, posting a series of emoji to his Facebook page that included a cop with the pistol pointed at his head.
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Security company Kromtech has unearthed two more embarrassing (and potentially dangerous) cases of groups leaving mass data caches unguarded on the public internet.In the first case, the culprit was an improperly configured AWS S3 bucket owned and operated by Robocent, a political robocalling company based in Virginia Beach, VA.According to Kromtech head of comms Bob Diachenko, the storage bucket contained 2,594 files, including the audio files to be used in robocalls to voters and spreadsheets containing the voter data itself.Among the info the company was holding was voters' names, addresses, year of birth, phone number, political affiliation, and demographic info like ethnicity and education level, all pieces of data that would be valuable to use in a spear phishing or social engineering scam.Unfortunately, Diachenko said, it gets worse.It appears other sites have already collected and indexed the exposed data.
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Strategic acquisition gives Okta zero trust credentialsSan Francisco-based Okta, the cloud identity services provider, has snapped up fellow Bay Area startup ScaleFT, which specialises in Zero Trust architecture for the cloud.The deal boosts Okta’s security offering and allows it to take aim at a virtual private network (VPN) market estimated to be worth $106 (£81) billion by 2022.Okta has been buoyant over the past year, with its share price more than doubling since its 2017 IPO.The acquisition is a strategic one for the company — which numbers customers like Adobe and provides the identity component to credit agency Experian — allowing it to bolster its identity verification offering with zero trust credentials.The terms of the deal, announced today, were not disclosed.
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Chocolate Factory apologizes for trigger-happy AIWith no mention of Tuesday's Cloud Platform service troubles, Google on Wednesday heralded the arrival of click-to-deploy Kubernetes apps in the Google Cloud Platform Marketplace."With GCP Marketplace, you can now easily find prepackaged apps and deploy them onto the cluster of your choice," said Anil Dhawan, product manager, in a blog post, referring to the GCP store for third-party apps previously known as Cloud Launcher.The platform enhancement accompanies a note from Google VP of engineering Ben Treynor Sloss thanking a GCP customer for candid (a euphemism for "critical") comments about GCP's sudden and unexpected suspension of service.The June 29 post, titled "Why you should not use Google Cloud," describes how Google's automated systems flagged the customer's account for suspicious activity and shut down services on the basis of artificial rather than actual intelligence.The unidentified author chided Google for its reliance on automation.
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Even though it feels like E3 2018 just ended, we’ll soon be onto our next big gaming conference of the year: Gamescom.Gamescom is one of the largest gaming trade shows around – outpacing E3 significantly in terms of attendance – so naturally, many game companies will be heading there to show of their latest and greatest.Microsoft confirmed today that it will be at Gamescom next month, and it teased some of the items it’ll have on display.Major Nelson actually made headlines this afternoon by stating that Microsoft would show off “all-new Xbox hardware and accessories” during a special episode of Inside Xbox during Gamescom.After all, it was just last month at E3 2018 that Phil Spencer revealed that the Xbox team is hard at work making the next generation of Xbox-branded consoles.While no one was really expecting Microsoft to debut these new consoles at Gamescom next month, the phrase “Xbox hardware” is enough to pique anyone’s interest.
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Alice Wetterlund, a stand-up comedian and actress who appeared on two seasons of "Silicon Valley," accused T.J. Miller of being a "bully" on set, in a series of tweets Tuesday.Since Miller's exit from "Silicon Valley" in 2017, he's been publicly accused of sexually assaulting a woman during his time in college (which he has denied), and was arrested on suspicion of calling in a fake bomb threat on an Amtrak train.Alice Wetterlund, a female comedian who guest-starred on seasons two and three of HBO's "Silicon Valley," called out T.J. Miller for being a "bully" on set, and accused male cast members of enabling his behavior, in a series of tweets on Tuesday.Miller, who played windbag entrepreneur Erlich Bachman, left "Silicon Valley" in 2017, after the show's fourth season.Since Miller's dramatic exit, he's been accused of sexually assaulting a woman while he was in college, which he denied.In April, Miller was arrested on suspicion of calling in a fake bomb threat on an Amtrak train.
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Thieves turns to media for help blackmail, er, compensation for their, uh, researchThe records include medical histories and contact information for tens of thousands of home-care patients in Ontario, Canada, and belong to CarePartners.The biz, which provides home medical care services on behalf of the Ontario government, admitted last month that it had been hacked, and its documents copied.At the time it only acknowledged that personal health and financial information of patients and employees had been "inappropriately accessed.”A gang claiming to be behind the network intrusion then approached CBC News with a sample of the swiped data.That bundle reportedly included thousands of patient medical records with phone numbers and addresses, dates of birth, and health card numbers, as well as detailed medical histories including past conditions, diagnoses, surgical procedures, care plans and medications for patients across the Canadian region.
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If a customer makes a mistake in how they set something up, or they don't understand the full implications of an AWS feature, it can expose them to the risk of unauthorized access and data exfiltration.AWS account misconfigurations have exposed everything from voter registrations, to FedEx customer data, insurance information, and even the systems of the massive accounting and consulting firm Accenture.Known as Zelkova and Tiros, the offerings from the AWS Automated Reasoning Group analyze crucial AWS security configurations, evaluating access control schemes and mapping possible paths to the open internet from an S3 bucket.Instead what we’re trying to get is a formal analysis, and a methodical way that we have gone about verifying that the security controls we put into place are working the way we think they’re working.Tiros maps the connections between network mechanisms, and is particularly useful for checking for unexpected access from the open internet.Zelkova, meanwhile, can create benchmarks for comparison between different S3 buckets or other AWS components, helping developers understand how permissive their setups are compared to their existing infrastructure, or a model S3 bucket.
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Reddit is bringing back an old-school form of Internet interaction with strangers: chat rooms.The company has been quietly working on its Chat platform, including offering it as a limited beta over the past year.Over these months, Reddit says that about 7,000 people have used the chat feature, paving the way for today’s big news: the chat room beta is expanding to more subreddits.Chat rooms, of course, are a space for strangers on the Internet to talk with each other over text in real time.Reddit Chat, as the company calls it, has evolved from one-on-one chatting to group chats that were kept private.In its latest iteration, Reddit Chat is opening rooms to entire communities, enabling anyone within them to hop on and have a conversation.
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Innovation has long since been disruptive in nature.Take Blockbuster, for example, which is down to just one store, largely due to Netflix and other streaming services.Or the taxi industry, which has dwindled due to ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft.As technology advances and entrepreneurs notice an opportunity to be had, innovation occurs.That's exactly what architecture firm Dahir Insaat is doing with its awesome drive-thru supermarket concept, which attempts to combine convenience and practicality.Check out the video below.
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It isn't a bird or a plane.It's probably a UFO, at least if you're watching History's upcoming Project Blue Book drama series.The series, which was inspired by real UFO studies conducted by the US Air Force starting in the early 1950s, debuts on the History channel this winter.But a first-look trailer shows off its cast, which includes Game of Thrones' Aidan Gillen as Dr. Allen Hynek and Neal McDonough, who plays Damien Darhk in Legends of Tomorrow, as Gen. James Harding.Hynek, a real historical figure, was a scientific adviser for the Air Force's UFO work.The trailer doesn't leave much to the imagination.
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Some people have very... interesting taste in customizing cars.Michael Fux, who made a metric dung-ton of money in the mattress industry, is one of them, and all it takes to figure that out is one glance at the latest addition to his collection.This week, Fux took possession of the first McLaren Senna to be delivered to a US customer.It's tinted in a unique shade of emerald green known as Fux Green.But a closer glance reveals that it's not paint -- it's actually tinted carbon fiber, as this particular Senna has been optioned with a full carbon fiber body.The wheels, interestingly, carry a polished finish with red center caps on one side and blue on the other.
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In an interview published Wednesday, the Facebook chief exec defended the presence of conspiracy theorist sites like Infowars on his social network.Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook won't ban Holocaust deniers or conspiracy theorists like Infowars because doing so would go against Facebook's principle of "giving people a voice."In a wide-ranging interview with Recode's Kara Swisher published on Wednesday, the 34-year-old CEO discussed Facebook's approach to tackling hoaxes and misinformation, and defended his company's decision not to delete hoax peddlers' posts or ban them outright.I find that deeply offensive," Zuckerberg said."But at the end of the day, I don’t believe that our platform should take that down because I think there are things that different people get wrong.I don’t think that they’re intentionally getting it wrong."
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Scientists announced that they have discovered 10 previously unknown moons orbiting Jupiter.The team, led by astronomer Scott Sheppard, first spotted some of the new moons while looking for exceptionally distant objects at the brim of our Solar System, beyond Pluto, using the Blanco 4-meter telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile.Jupiter just happened to be in their view, and they noticed a handful of new objects near the planet, between just one and four kilometres in diameter.Last year, this same team announced the discovery of two other moons, which brought Jupiter’s total at the time to a very nice 69.Sheppard told Gizmodo that it could be a remnant of some random object in the Solar System that got sucked in by Jupiter’s gravity—like a rogue comet, for example—which smashed into some of the retrograde moons, and broke them into the many that orbit the gas giant today.Though that errant object no longer fully exists, the oddball moon could be a fragment of it.
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By now, you’ve probably learned that KFC is that kid you grew up with who was willing to try just about anything.However quizzical some of the brand’s stunts are, the method to the seeming madness tends to work—and has clearly helped bump the QSR’s fortunes.If you were told that KFC would put together a Colonel Sanders-inspired cat climber, then include scads of kitties on Facebook Live with Super Deluxe for four hours, your response may very well be: “Of course they would do that.” And do that they did yesterday as north of 700,000 people made their way to the puzzling, yet strangely on brand exercise.Those who joined had an online say on what the movable Colonel would do, including determining the names of the cats that seemed surprisingly nonplussed (at least in the stretch I watched) about an animatronic man with a spinning cane and rotating head.The Colonel was admirably ad-libbed and voiced by Ron Lynch who has a delightfully quirky list of work, including the voice of Ron for Bob’s Burgers.The significant upside, aside from selling chicken, is that the cats were adoptable through the Heaven on Earth Society of Animals in Los Angeles.
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Once upon a time, when retailers distinguished themselves primarily on price and selection, price matching enabled them to reassure customers they were the best place to shop.“More than a hundred years ago, [the] Sears catalog promised the lowest prices on its goods … Macy’s in the early 20th [century] was also a price cutter and promised the lowest prices,” said Vicki Howard, visiting fellow in the Department of History at the University of Essex.Amazon doesn’t offer price matching, but as recent figures show, it dominates nearly half of the U.S. ecommerce market—thanks at least in part to Prime and all of the benefits it affords—and really doesn’t need to.Retailers like Target and Walmart, however, do offer matches as they vie for competitive advantage.That means customers who find eligible items for less on approved competitor websites can contact eBay within 48 hours and get an eBay coupon for 110 percent of the difference.Second, the exactly-the-same-and-in-stock-item-purchased-within-48-hours must come from one of these approved competitor sites: Amazon, Best Buy, Home Depot, Jet, Sears, Target, Walmart or Wayfair.
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Xbox is headed to Cologne, Germany for next month's Gamescom gathering, and it will reveal all-new bundles and accessories at the show, according to a blog post by Microsoft's Major Nelson.An earlier version of the blog post noted there would be "all-new Xbox hardware" shown during a special episode of Inside Xbox, however the blog has since been edited to read "new Xbox One bundles and accessories," with no mention of new hardware.So, now we know for sure that it's unlikely the Xbox Two will be revealed, considering Microsoft redacted its "all-new Xbox hardware" line.Instead, we should expect new Xbox bundles featuring games, consoles and controllers, hopefully at attractive prices.Plus, we'll see brand-new accessories, which could include the rumored new Xbox Elite 2 controller.The upgraded controller, first spotted in leaks in January, could have rubberized grips on the front, new indicator lights, USB-C, Bluetooth connection, adjustable tension in the thumbsticks, and a charging port similar to those found on Apple MacBooks.
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Netflix has simplified its TV interface by adding a new sidebar with quick access icons.The redesign somewhat resembles the YouTube TV interface, making it easier to access the items you’d previously have to scroll to the top to find.The company is rolling out its new interface to subscribers around the world while teasing similar future updates that are already in the pipeline.The Netflix TV interface is presented when the service is accessed using a smart TV, set-top box, or streaming stick device.Unlike smaller devices, such as a smartphone, a TV has a large amount of screen real estate, making it possible to show more information at any given time while also potentially complicating navigation.Until now, Netflix’s TV users had to scroll all the way to the top of the screen to reveal an otherwise invisible row of tools, such as search and accounts.
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Approximately 99.99 percent of the human population will be aghast at the notion that a car's service could cost upward of $20,000, but if you need to change the oil on your Bugatti, your options are limited.Here's why it costs that much.Royalty Exotic Cars, a company that specializes in renting out high-end supercars, made a pretty thorough video explaining why an oil change on a Bugatti Veyron costs as much as it does.While some of it certainly involves badge cachet, a lot of it comes down to how damn complex the car is -- as it should be, given its seven-figure price tag.The Veyron uses a dry-sump oiling system with 16 different drain plugs, accessible after removing parts of the underbody.Refilling, along with checking air filters and all that good stuff, requires removing the car's rear fender liners and rear deck.
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Earlier this year, Ubisoft brought South Park: The Fractured But Whole to the Nintendo Switch.The game’s announcement came as something of a surprise, as it was made with no plan to bring the game’s predecessor, South Park: The Stick of Truth, to the Switch as well.Ubisoft seems poised to fix that oversight, announcing a Switch version of The Stick of Truth in a roundabout fashion.Instead of taking to Twitter or issuing a press release to announce the Switch version of The Stick of Truth, it was instead revealed with little fanfare in Ubisoft’s first quarter financial results.In fact, the game’s appearance in that financial report barely counts as an announcement at all, as it only shows up in a table of upcoming Ubisoft releases.That table says that the Switch version of The Stick of Truth will be a digital-only release, unlike The Fractured But Whole, which was released on physical media as well.
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