Andy Haas

Andy Haas

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Following 20
UK
Join tech luminaries and Jenny Agutter for a night on the tilesThe Register is partnering with Byte Night, the annual tech-heavy sleepout fundraiser for Action for Children, the UK charity which has been caring and sticking up for vulnerable young people for 150 years.So, why don’t you sign up now if you want to do something for vulnerable young people, think you can rough it with the best of them, and fancy spending a pleasant evening, then a long chilly night, with stars of both tech and entertainment.This year’s sleepout happens on 5 October, at 12 different locations up and down and right across the UK.And if you’re in tech and in Yorkshire, you can now join in the fun at the newest sleepout location, Leeds.You head over to the Byte Night website, and register, either individually or as a team.
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UK
Historically, Twitter has done a poor job of protecting its users from incessant abuse and threats.In a bid to curb the rampant harassment on its service, however, Twitter announced today that it’s buying Smyte, a San Francisco-based startup that aimed to help companies curb spam, fraud, and abuse online.As part of the acquisition, Smyte says it is shutting down its business, effective immediately.According to Smyte’s archived homepage, the company provided its services to companies like TaskRabbit, Meetup, GoFundMe, and Quora.It used a combination of machine learning and human moderators to identify and categorize user activity involving spam, profanity, and fraud.“The health of the conversation on Twitter remains our top priority and we’re looking forward to approaching this work with an expanded team and new technology,” Twitter said in its announcement of the acquisition.
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UK
Blockchain might actually prove helpful for a changeIn an effort to demonstrate there are actual uses for blockchain technology, global professional services biz EY and Microsoft have teamed up to offer companies a way to manage rights and royalties.Ubisoft - a Microsoft game publishing partner - intends to test the system, which relies on the Quorum blockchain protocol, Microsoft's Azure cloud infrastructure and supporting technologies."The opportunity to collaborate with EY and Microsoft on blockchain use cases in the domain of digital contracts and royalties is truly exciting," said Loic Amans, SVP of finance and strategic planning at Ubisoft, in canned remarks.It will, we're told, offer almost real-time insight into sales transactions, info that tends to be useful for marketing analytics.Paul Brody, EY global innovation leader for blockchain, contends blockchain tech is ideally suited to this particular situation.
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China
The Mi Pad 4 was yesterday confirmed to get a Snapdragon 660 chipset and an 8-inch screen by Xiaomi.Today, some long-hidden images of the tablet have now been posted in the open on Weibo.Thie images show a slim bezel-design confirming what we previously thought was going to happen.The tablet will integrate a 16:10 aspect ratio surely.Most of the design elements are taken from last year’s tablet.It has a single rear camera positioned on the top left corner of the new slate and there’s a long rectangular white strip that runs along the most of the top edge on the back side.
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UK
Xiaomi is perhaps best known for its very affordable smartphones that have never officially reached US shores.What is less known, however, is that it is one of the few remaining makers of Android tablets, which have never officially reached US shores either.It would seem, however, that Xiaomi will be stirring up the tablet market a bit with its upcoming Mi Pad 4, what is perhaps the first tablet to have a face unlock that some are expecting to debut in the next iPad Pro.There hasn’t really been much development in the tablet market lately, particularly in the hardware.It’s a catch-22 situation that is slowly leading to the market’s demise save for a tablets devices aimed at very specific markets.Like the iPad Pros, the new Chromebook devices, and Windows 10 on ARM PCs.
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China
Xiaomi is expected to launch the 4th device in its Mi Pad series of Tablets which is dubbed as Mi Pad 4 at an event a few days from now in China.Only recently, the company confirmed to us the device could come with the Snapdragon 660 SoC and an 8-inch screen with Full-HD, while other specs are also flying around in the form of rumors.Now, ahead of the official unveiling, the company has confirmed via its official Weibo account that the upcoming Mi Pad 4 could be the first of its Mi Pad series to sport the AI unlock, and if that pans out, then users of the upcoming device would only just have to gaze at their tablet in order to get their units unlocked.While this is something exciting, it should be noted that the feature which relies on the front facing camera may not be as secured as the Find X’s front-facing 3D camera, and the 3D module found in some other devices.According to previous reports, the Mi Pad 4 is expected to house a 13MP/5MP camera combo, with a massive 6,000mAh battery, while it is unsurprisingly tipped to arrive in two variants – one WiFi and one LTE-enabled either in 4GB/64GB and 6GB/128GB memory configuration.If rumors are to be believed the Mi Pad 4 might come with a price tag of CNY 1,499 ($230) for the base variant, while the other variant might go for as much as CNY 1,999 ($305).
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US
One of the earliest complex lifeforms to exist on Earth has been named in honor of Barack Obama, continuing a strong love affair between scientists and the former president of the United States.The ancient, disc-shaped animal has been dubbed and lived some 550 million years ago.The discovery, by researchers at the University of California-Riverside and the South Australia Museum, took place in a newly excavated fossil bed located in South Australia's Flinders Ranges that has been dubbed "Alice's Restaurant Bed", borrowing a lyric from the Arlo Guthrie song that says "you can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant."Professor of paleontology Mary Droser, who led the research, told the Washington Post that the Obama moniker was bestowed upon the creature because it reminded researchers of an ear, something that avid Obama watchers and cartoonists will know was one of the former president's more obvious characteristics.Alice's Restaurant Bed is teeming with prehistoric fossils from the Ediacaran Biota, a group of soft-bodied animals representing some of the earliest lifeforms on Earth.Scientists are able to visualize their traits and physiology in the Ranges due to their remarkable preservation in fine-grain sandstone.
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China
On June 21, around 20 institutions including Tencent Security, token trading platform Huobi.com (火币网), and China Blockchain Research Center (中国区块链应用研究中心), together established the China Blockchain Security Alliance (中国区块链安全联盟).The announcement was made during the first China Blockchain Security Summit (中国区块链安全高峰论坛) in Beijing.The Alliance’s mission is to ensure the healthy and sustainable development of the blockchain ecosystem and protect it from fraud.“We are willing to participate in blockchain’s industrial construction in the name of Tencent.We hope to contribute to blockchain’s security in China,” Ma Bin, vice president at Tencent said during the Summit.ICO mania and commercial blockchain concepts have been attracting massive attention in China.
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UK
When you are slapped with a patent lawsuit, one of the best ways to turn the tables is to have those patents invalidated.It is definitely easier and perhaps cheaper than arguing in court that you didn’t infringe on them anyway.Apple is no stranger to that tactic and is now pulling the same strategy on Qualcomm over four of the chip maker’s patents.Those same patents are, of course, the ones that Qualcomm is suing Apple for.According to Bloomberg, Apple has filed a petition with the US PTO Patent Trial and Appeal Board to cancel Qualcomm’s patents on automatic focus on a digital camera, a phone with a personal digital assistant, touch-sensitive displays, and efficient circuit memory.As with any case such as this, Apple will be required to show prior art, meaning that the patents in question are not exactly new when Qualcomm applied for them.
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UK
POLL Oracle’s put a price on Java SE and support: US$25/server/month and $2.50/user/month on the desktop, or less if you buy lots for a long time.Big Red’s called this a Java SE Subscription and pitched it as “a commonly used model, popular with Linux distributions”.The company also reckons the new deal is better than a perpetual licence, because they involve “an up-front cost plus additional annual support and maintenance fees.”Oracle’s subs include “license, updates, upgrades, and support in a single price.” Perhaps with some steak knives, too, if you’re among the first 100 callers!If you like your current Java licences, Oracle will let you keep them.And if Java’s essential for other Oracle products you run, those product already include licences.
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US
When ABC cancelled the Roseanne reboot after Roseanne Barr's racist tweet about a former Obama aide in May, it looked like the show's cast wouldn't get another opportunity to make fans laugh.Now, thanks to ABC, the Conners will get a second chance.ABC has given a series order to The Conners -- a spin-off TV show about a working-class family starring original cast members John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Lecy Goranson and Michael Fishman -- but minus Barr.Barr will have no financial or creative involvement in the spin-off, according to a report from Variety on Thursday."We have received a tremendous amount of support from fans of our show, and it's clear that these characters not only have a place in our hearts, but in the hearts and homes of our audience," ABC cast members Goodman, Metcalf, Gilbert, Goranson, and Fishman said in a joint statement on Variety."We all came back last season because we wanted to tell stories about the challenges facing a working-class family today."
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UK
Chevrolet has brought back an old name from the dead, with the 2019 Blazer promising to shake up the midsize crossover SUV segment.Sized to slot in-between Chevy’s Equinox and Traverse, the 2019 Blazer takes a more fashion-forward approach to styling, something which is likely to prove divisive.In fact, there’ll be a number of different styles, which Chevrolet expects to better distinguish between the various trims.That’ll include a more sporting RS, and a high-end Blazer Premier, among others.The Blazer RS will go in the opposite direction, with a blacked-out look.Under the hood, the standard engine for all Blazer models is an Ecotec 2.5-liter four-cylinder.
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UK
There's a new Google Assistant update available today, and it's going to make issuing voice commands to the AI assistant a lot less tediousContinued Conversation, first shown at Google IO in May, allows Google Assistant to automatically listen for followup commands after it answers the first question or command.This means you won't have to say "OK, Google" before every question or command in natural conversation.The Continued Conversation ends when you say, "thank you," or "stop," or when Google Assistant detects no speech for 8 seconds.Google isn't delivering this feature to everyone at once, though.Continued Conversation is rolling out.
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China
Huawei and Honor smartphones currently ships with its EMUI software which is deeply customized and comes with loads of features which makes it very far from Stock Android experience.However, if you are a fan of Huawei/Honor but also love stock Android running on top of Huawei/Honor hardware, then this would be a good news for you.A team of professional developers called OpenKirin Team has developed an unofficial LineageOS, CarbonROM, and Resurrection Remix builds for all EMUI 8 devices.This work was made easier because the HiSilicon Kirin devices now support Project Treble which handles the chronic aspect of the job.Any Huawei or Honor smartphone running on EMUI 8 (out-of-the-box or updated) supports this project.However, OpenKirin team has launched a website where all its supported devices are listed.
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China
On June 21, Xiaomi took to its official Weibo account to disclose a full-blown press release images of the Xiaomi Redmi 6 Pro before launch.The Redmi 6 Pro will come in five colours – Rose Gold, Sand Gold, Lake Blue, Black and Flame Red.As we already know, it uses a notch which many smartphone enthusiasts are still yet to understand because it also comes with a pretty thick chin.Now, we have a complete 360-degree view of what this smartphone looks like.This is quite weird because these unboxing images are coming four days before its official launch on June 25th.The product will be available in 3GB+32GB and 4GB+64GB configurations.
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China
The global presales for the newest piece from OUKITEL just started through the Banggood e-shop and the OUKITEL K7 is trying to carve out its place in the mobile world.And for that the makers released another comparison video to help it, this time focusing on the camera performance against the popular Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus rival model.From the video they are making the assumption the OUKITEL K7 is performing on par or even overtaking the Redmi 5 Plus in the picture quality.Check it out for yourself to judge if the announced deep custom optimizations to the K7’s camera really did such a good job.Comparing the two phones in general can get a bit tricky, because there are some major disparities in the features, mainly in the battery department, because OUKITEL K7 packs a massive 10.000 mAh battery capacity and 9V/2A charging power.Also the chipsets are quite different, but still roughly also on par performance-wise.
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A hanging garden encloses three videos screens, creating private viewing booths.There's no answer to that question, of course.And there are 28 more conversation prompts at 29Rooms, a series of immersive, interactive art installations that's been traveling across the country and is making its debut in San Francisco this weekend.Hosted by Refinery29, a digital media company that's "a catalyst for women to see, feel and claim their power," the exhibition started in 2015 to celebrate the company's 10th anniversary.This year's theme is Turn it into Art, something each of the installations does by converting an open space into a tight-knit work of art."We ignite people's imaginations, spark dialogue and action," said Piera Gelardi, a co-founder of Refinery29.
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Scrolling through the comments, I caught a “thank you for coming in.” It was posted by a popular celebrity chef who had hosted me the night before at his residency in an upmarket New York restaurant.It was one of 35 free meals I agreed to during my month-long trip to the city.You see, I’m no food buff, travel maverick or vegan yoga guru.I’m a digital marketer who wants to expose how so-called influencers use a range of blackhat tactics to convince people they’re worth investing in.I’d say about 70 percent of the followers were real.To curate content, I would screenshot the photos of other accounts and provide a link back to in the comments.
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UK
In case you haven't noticed, today is the Summer solstice.Not that it's particularly warm at the moment.To commemorate the day, National Rail has decided to stream the longest train journey in the UK - in case you like watching a trains-eye view of the British countryside.The organisation is streaming the journey on Facebook, and while the comment says it's not live the point is the same.You can watch the Aberdeen to Penzance journey in its entirety - or what's left of it anyway.The journey began at 8.20 this morning, but since it's 13 hours and 23 minutes long it won't be finishing until around 10pm this evening.
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China
The Nokia X6 is getting closer and closer to official launch as more and more sighting occur on certification websites and even official websites.The latter in particular happened again today.This time, the Nokia X6 support page appeared on the OEM’s Indian portal.Most recently, the handset appeared on the global website briefly only to be taken off in a short amount of time.Support pages are vital signs of a launch.They contain important information regarding a product including initial setups, how-to guides, walkthroughs and stuff.
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