David Harrison

David Harrison

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Following 13
UK
A strong contender has emerged for an addition to The Register Standards Soviet's list of officially approved weights and measures: the Routemaster Fleet.In a tweet yesterday, a secondhand printer cartridge company said: "There were a combined total of 184,064 seats within the Original Routemaster Fleet.That's enough seats to fill Wembley Stadium twice – with 4,064 spare!"184,064 seats sounds like an awful lot.Naturally, your intrepid standardisation folk here at El Reg started looking round t'interweb to see if this was true.The first, and inevitably least reliable source, is Wikipedia.
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Turns out, Detroit still had some aces up its sleeve, both domestic and foreign.It’s definitely been a year for new trucks, with some of the biggest names in the segment coming in for a refresh or even a complete relaunch.Ford had been teasing the all-new 2019 Ranger for a full twelve months – it warned us the nameplate was returning to the US at the NAIAS 2017, indeed – and wasted no time once it had our attention.Smaller than the F-150, and arguably much more focused in its target audience, the new Ranger may be more compact but Ford is insisting it’s no less capable.Still, there’ll be fewer configurations on offer – just the one wheelbase, with two bed lengths depending on whether you go for SuperCrew or SuperCab – and a single engine.The 2.3-liter EcoBoost and its 10-speed automatic pairing should do the job, but we can’t help but wonder what a Ranger Raptor might look, sound, and drive like.
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It’s not every day that an algorithm can save your life.That may be about to get more common, however, after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration this month granted official approval for an algorithm used in hospitals to help predict — and hopefully help prevent — sudden patient deaths.It’s a system called the Wave Clinical Platform, which works by monitoring patient vital signs and then sending alerts warning of impending potentially fatal heart attacks or respiratory failure up to six hours before a patient suffers such an event.This is the first time that an algorithm used this way has been given FDA approval.“Health care, no matter where you live, is under pressure from all sides – cost and resources,” Mary Baum, chief strategy officer for ExcelMedical, told Digital Trends.“We do not have enough physicians or nurses, and we have an aging population who are sicker and who need more resources and services.”
China
ZTE Nubia Z17 MiniS, which is a variant of the company’s first bezel-free device has received a price cut of 300 yuan in China.The device is now priced at t just 1,699 Yuan (about $263), down from the 1,999 Yuan (about $310).The price cut is not a permanent reduction, but a new year promotional price slash and as such will retail for that amount for a limited time.much like the Nubia Z17s, the ZTE Nubia Z17 miniS highlights a dual rear and front camera configuration.At the rear sits a 13-megapixel dual rear camera with monochrome + RGB sensors, while a 16-megapixel front camera with a 5-megapixel secondary sensor sits above the display.The device drops the full-screen design of the Nubia Z17S for the traditional 16:9 aspect ratio, so the device still finds a place for the fingerprint sensor built into the home button just below the display.
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SkyBell has announced a new security camera simply called the Plug-in Camera.Yes, every camera plugs into the wall, but SkyBell’s new model is a bit different.You don’t mount the Plug-in Camera somewhere and then plug it into the wall using a long charging cable; rather, the camera itself installs directly over an outlet by plugging into it.The SkyBell Plug-in Camera makes simplicity a primary focus, with installation taking only seconds, according to the company.Users plug it directly into the wall, where it resides facing outward toward the room.A button on the front of the camera is a simple way to trigger recording, making it a better choice for tech-inept individuals.
US
On the floor of CES, LG’s CLOi service robots got a lot of attention.But just across the parking lot from the Las Vegas Convention Center, two service robots—both Relay robots from San Jose-based Savioke—are quietly at work.These robots, tagged Elvis and Priscilla, are full-time employees of the Renaissance Hotel, and they aren’t getting a lot of attention.Others casually brushed by, sometimes giving it a little pat as they passed.I checked in with Savioke founder Steve Cousins, hotel manager Carl Kruger, and robot Elvis, to find out how these robotic workers are doing.(Elvis was taking a break from his duties for media meetings, but Kruger wasn’t sure how long Elvis could hang out.
UK
Camera makers usually bundle lenses with widest focal length if 28mm or 24mm in some cases, which is not enough in most cases.The beginner/enthusiast models up to the D500 have APS-C sized sensors (Nikon calls them 'DX' format), while models from the D610 up have full frame sensors (FX format).A brilliant combination of performance, specs and valueType: Zoom | Sensor size: APS-C | Focal length: 10-20mm | Maximum aperture: f/3.5 | Image stabilization: No | Minimum focus distance: 0.24m | Filter size: 82mm | Dimensions: 87.3 x 88.2mm | Weight: 520gThis lens is newer, bigger and better than Sigma's original 10-20mm, which is still on sale.Super-wide-angle lenses rarely come wider than this
US
Security researchers have revealed details of a vulnerability in WhatsApp’s security that could be used to compromise the secrecy of encrypted group chats on the messaging platform.The risk associated with the flaw is limited on account of attackers needing to have access to WhatsApp servers to be able to insert themselves into a group conversation.Wired reports that the encryption flaws, which were detailed today at the Real World Crypto security conference in Zurich, Switzerland, by a group of researchers from Ruhr University Bochum in Germany, also affect the Signal and Threema messaging apps — though to a lesser degree.Regarding WhatsApp, the researchers say that anyone who controls WhatsApp’s servers could insert new participants into an otherwise private group without having the permission of the group administrator.The researchers also suggest that an attacker with access to WhatsApp servers could selectively block any messages in the group — closing down the ability of group participants to ask questions, or provide warnings about the interloper.Reached for comment, a WhatsApp spokesman confirmed the security researchers’ findings but said it views the risk as limited because no one can secretly join a WhatsApp group chat — meaning users can always chat one-to-one to confirm any suspicions about unknown members appearing in their groups.
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Democrats in the US Senate said they’ll force a vote to reverse the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) recent move to repeal net neutrality guidelines for internet service providers (ISPs), reports Reuters.We heard this from Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer last month too, and we noted that it wouldn’t be easy for Congress to fight the FCC on the matter, owing to a large number of Republican representatives in the house who were opposed to saving net neutrality.But now, the Democrats have an ally in Republican Senator Susan Collins, who voiced her support for overturning the FCC’s decision.With that, Democrats now only need one more Republican in the Senate to back a vote to repeal the FCC’s action.It still isn’t a cakewalk, as a reversal of the FCC vote to kill net neutrality would require approval from not just the Senate, but also the US House and President Trump – the latter of whom supported the decision.Without net neutrality, ISPs can block or throttle web traffic from certain sources, and offer fast lanes to those content and online service providers who pay for the privilege – thus creating an uneven playing field in cyberspace.
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Origin has always been one of our favorite custom system builders and, at CES 2018, the company has unveiled a dramatic redesign of its main PC chassis – we're of course talking about the company’s full-tower Genesis and mid-tower Millennium.Previously these two chassis were made primarily out of plastic, but now they’ve gotten full-metal makeovers with a touch of tempered glass and improved RBG lighting to completely modernize their designs.During CES 2018, we got a chance to catch up with Eddy Piedra, Marketing Manager at Origin to get the inside story behind the redesign.“Since early last year we have been working closely with our lead engineers to meticulously design our case to not only have improved materials, but also to have a more streamlined appearance without any compromises,” Piedra began.“We wanted to stay true to our high-quality standards of PC design, all while to continuing to offer easy customization and upgradability.The first thing you might notice about the new Genesis and Millennium, is that they’re both much more streamlined than the bold curves and angles seen on past iterations.
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Dell Mobile Connect lets you control your phone from your laptop.The software will come preinstalled in Dell's upcoming XPS, Inspiron, Alienware and Vostro laptops, the computer giant announced on Tuesday here at CES 2018.The software is compatible with both Android devices and iPhones, but functionality is limited for Apple phones.Using Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, Android users can read and respond to texts, make calls and run apps.It also shows notifications for other apps.iPhone users can't run full apps on the PC, but they can read and respond to texts as well as make and receive calls.
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Last month we covered the story of the Long Island Iced Tea Company rebranding itself as Long Blockchain as part of a broader shift in corporate strategy.On Friday, we got the first concrete details of the company's new blockchain strategy.Long Blockchain planned to raise up to $8.4 million with a stock offering and then use some of the money to buy 1,000 Antminer S9 bitcoin mining machines.The machines would be "installed in a world-class third-party data center experienced in cryptocurrency mining and located in a Nordic country."The company says that it's still planning to buy bitcoin-mining hardware.However, Long Blockchain says that it "can make no assurances that it will be able to finance the purchase of the mining equipment."
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Some of the biggest news from CES thus far surrounds a massive, 88-inch 8K OLED television from LG featuring such fine detail that tiny newspaper text was readable from several feet away.While LG might be the biggest name in TV manufacturing thanks to OLED (a type of display no other company makes), technologies like Samsung’s QLED and even the new micro LED are pushing to become the gold standard, with Samsung’s ridiculous 146-inch “Wall” display drawing attention at CES.Micro LED means “modular” televisions of any size, though right now the tech isn’t refined enough to work well on smaller panels.Samsung does plan to sell micro LED televisions in 2018, but they’ll most likely be far too expensive for most to consider.Manufacturers like TCL and Hisense are also following up on strong 2017 showings, showing off new television lineups in hopes of gaining entry to the metaphorical TV pantheon.If you’ve been following CES coverage today — even casually — you’ve probably already heard about LG’s 65-inch, 4K rollable (yes, rollable) OLED television.
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The revolution will be televisedBig players, including Google, Apple and Facebook want a slice of the $170 billion/year U.S. TV market.That’s the thinking of Needham & Co analyst, Laura Martin in an extensive client research note provided to me, ‘The Future of Media – an Epic Battle’.Tech firms who are already spending huge amounts of cash on creating original video content designed to weaken the connection between viewing audiences and existing incumbents in the space.This battle for the future of media means tech firms will buy the large studios, she argues.Would family-friendly Apple be institutionally capable of creating shows with the kind of challenging adult themes that drive the most successful TV and movie franchises?
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Nearly 24 million Facebook views, and countingOprah Winfrey’s speech after accepting the Cecil B. DeMille Award dominated conversation on Facebook and Twitter during the 75th Annual Golden Globe Awards Sunday night.At the time of this post, the video of the speech, shared via the Golden Globes Facebook Watch page, had been viewed nearly 24 million times and shared over 400,000 times.Twitter said the hashtag TimesUp was tweeted more than 520,000 times during the event—second only to GoldenGlobes—peaking during Winfrey’s speech.Meanwhile, WhyWeWearBlack was tweeted more than 170,000 times, peaking during the red carpet festivities.The five most-talked-about moments on Facebook during the event Sunday night were:
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In addition to a slew of new laptops and computers, Asus announced a new Android phone at CES 2018.Known as the ZenFone Max Plus, the phone will be available in North America from February.In the US it will cost $229 (converted, that's about £175 or AU$300) for the model with 3GB RAM and 32GB storage.This is the first of Asus' ZenFone phones to feature Face Unlock.Already available in the Apple iPhone X (under the branding Face ID), the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Note 8 and the OnePlus 5T, facial recognition is a steady-growing trend among phones as an additional or alternative biometric security layer to fingerprints.The ZenFone Max Plus also packs a whopping 4,130mAh battery -- higher than usual for most phones.
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CES 2018 starts Tuesday for most of the industry, Monday for the press corps.So I will be spending five days being wow’ed by the biggest and thinnest TV displays ever, new networking and wireless power technology, impressive wearables, and lots more that I’ll be reporting on all week.But as I planned my schedule to make sure I attend all the most important tech industry announcements, and tried to figure out which new gadget will be the must-have item in 2018’s zeitgeist, I also put together a very short list of personal must-sees.It must be something I actually might want to own; something that I just think would be fun to try; or something whose existence makes me want to ask the developers: what were you thinking?Hunting for these little gold nuggets can get me down an aisle or two of the endless CES show floors that I might pass up otherwise, so it’s the list that I’ll take out when I need a little energy boost.I’m sure most of the major appliance manufacturers will be touting their latest and every smarter intelligent refrigerator.
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It’s not often you get to see the birth of the new car brand, but with Tesla’s recent success (and the backing of deep-pocketed investors in China), newly formed Future Mobility Corp. is giving things a go with its new electric car brand Byton.Co-founded by former BMW and Nissan execs, Byton picked CES 2018 to unveil its wildly ambitious EV concept, the first of three vehicles the company is hoping to launch by 2022.Byton’s plan is to start with a mid-size SUV slated to arrive in Q4 2019, before adding a sedan, and a seven-seater multi-purpose vehicle shortly after.Looking like a cross between the new Land Rover Velar and Faraday Future’s FF91, the feature list for Byton’s concept reads like a buzzword soup from the latest EV trends.It’s got side mounted cameras instead of your typical mirrors, gesture recognition for controlling media and the infotainment system, level 3 autonomous driving (with the company planning on upgrading to level 4 by sometime in 2020), and of course an built-in app ecosystem so you can monitor and control the car from your phone.The car even deeply integrated voice assistant tech by way of Amazon’s Alexa, which looks to have gotten a serious upgrade from the standard set of functions you might find in an Echo.
China
HMD Global has put in a lot of effort to return the Nokia brand to its past glory.The company is not only unveiling lovable smartphones, it is also releasing updates for its devices.About a year ago, Nokia released the Nokia 6 and this smartphone came with Android 7.1.1 (Nougat) with a planned upgrade to Android 8.0 (Oreo).Nokia 6 (2018) recently updated straight to Android 8.0 Oreo on first boot.Now, the company is currently keeping its promise by rolling out the Android 8.0 Oreo beta update to the 2017 Nokia 6 devices in India.Nokia CPO, Juho Sarvikas, took to his official Twitter handle to inform us that this update is part of a Beta Lab program.
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Munich City officials could waste €100m reversing a 15-year process that replaced proprietary software with open source following an official vote last year.Munich officials in 2003 voted to migrate to an in-house custom version of Ubuntu Linux called LiMux and tailor digital docs to be compatible with LibreOffice.An approval would replace the open-source office suite LibreOffice with Microsoft Office.The bill results from a combination of buying Windows 10 licences and converting some 12,000 LibreOffice templates and macros along with developing a new templating system for Microsoft Office.Those supporting the anti-Linux cause claim Windows 10 will solve perceived compatibility issues with applications and hardware drivers.See here for a list maintained by The Document Foundation, the organisation behind LibreOffice.
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