According to Julia Reda's blog, the only Pirate in the EU Parliament, the European Commission in 2014 paid the Dutch consulting firm Ecorys 360,000 euros (about $428,000) to research the effect piracy had on sales of copyrighted content.The final report was finished in May 2015, but was never published because the report concluded that piracy isn't harmful.The Next Web reports: The 300-page report seems to suggest that there's no evidence that supports the idea that piracy has a negative effect on sales of copyrighted content (with some exceptions for recently released blockbusters).The report states: "In general, the results do not show robust statistical evidence of displacement of sales by online copyright infringements.That does not necessarily mean that piracy has no effect but only that the statistical analysis does not prove with sufficient reliability that there is an effect.An exception is the displacement of recent top films.
HBO already has four possible Game of Thrones prequels in development, why not add a fifth?Game of Thrones co-executive producer and writer Bryan Cogman looks to be working with George R.R.Martin himself on another possible prequel to the hit series.Entertainment Weekly is reporting that Cogman is developing some sort of prequel concept for Game of Thrones, in addition to the four other ideas already being worked on.This follows something Martin said a few months ago, adding that he’s directly involved with three of the five possible ideas.There’s no word how many of them, if any, HBO would end up picking up after Game of Thrones ends its eight-season run.
Developer Marco Arment writes about the infamous notch on the iPhone X, which Apple has told developers to embrace rather than ignore: This is the new shape of the iPhone.As long as the notch is clearly present and of approximately these proportions, it's unique, simple, and recognizable.It's probably not going to significantly change for a long time, and Apple needs to make sure that the entire world recognizes it as well as we could recognize previous iPhones.That's why Apple has made no effort to hide the notch in software, and why app developers are being told to embrace it in our designs.That's why the HomePod software leak depicted the iPhone X like this: it's the new basic, recognizable form of the iPhone.Apple just completely changed the fundamental shape of the most important, most successful, and most recognizable tech product that the world has ever seen.
The announcement comes hot on the heels of the announcement of a €2 billion investment by Vodafone in fibre for Germany.At the end of 2015 Vodafone unveiled a network expansion programme featuring a bunch of European countries, including Spain.The announcement of availability, tariffs, etc indicates it’s work there is done.The new Spanish services will be available to around 4 million sites on 25 September.Vodafone claims these will be the first to offer 1 Gbps in Spain, although real-life speeds remain to be seen.As you can see from the tariff table below, Vodafone is putting a significant premium on the 1 gig service, charging €65 per month for the basic fibre (fibra) package, and between €82 and €106 for bundled fixed (fijo) mobile (móvil) and Vodafone TV.
An anonymous reader quotes CNN: Special counsel Robert Mueller and his team are now in possession of Russian-linked ads run on Facebook during the presidential election, after they obtained a search warrant for the information.Facebook gave Mueller and his team copies of ads and related information it discovered on its site linked to a Russian troll farm, as well as detailed information about the accounts that bought the ads and the way the ads were targeted at American Facebook users, a source with knowledge of the matter told CNN.The disclosure, first reported by the Wall Street Journal, may give Mueller's office a fuller picture of who was behind the ad buys and how the ads may have influenced voter sentiment during the 2016 election...As CNN reported Thursday, Facebook is still not sure whether pro-Kremlin groups may have made other ad buys intended to influence American politics that it simply hasn't discovered yet.It is even possible that unidentified ad buys may still exist on the social media network today.
We’re operating in a new world and it calls for new forms of leadership.At the end of June 2017, seven of the world’s 10 top valued publicly traded companies were tech companies.Naturally, size provides some important advantages, but I have seen on the inside that large pure players suffer from many of the ailments that hamper large non-tech companies.I have seen pure players that were born out of the first wave of internet companies, driving their business, shoving out marketing and managing their people as if it were back in the mid 1990s.That is a fatal sign.At a first level, there is the key issue of branding.
NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has been ready to die for a very long time.So when NASA finally put the thing in a death spiral around Saturn in April, you'd think that the mission's scientists would have breathed a sigh of relief.“As much as I want to have a rational reaction,” says Jonathan Lunine, a planetary scientist at Cornell University, “it’s still really hard to say 'This is it for Cassini,' that we won’t be getting any more data from it after Friday, ever.” Lunine and many of his colleagues have been working with Cassini for 20 years, and tomorrow, it’s goodbye for real—the true end of Cassini’s much-hyped Saturn-circling Grand Finale.You can watch Cassini go dark on this livestream below, starting at 7am Eastern time:If you’re a Cassini fan—and the mission has picked up quite a few, including adorable six-year-olds—that’s always going to be little sad.Roboto.” (Except maybe whoever is tweeting on the orbiter's behalf.)
BrianFagioli shares a report from BetaNews: The documentation aspect of any project is very important, as it can help people to both understand it and track changes.Unfortunately, many developers aren't very interested in documentation aspect, so it often gets neglected.Luckily, if you want to maintain proper documentation and stay organized, today, Google is releasing its internal developer documentation style guide.This can quite literally guide your documentation, giving you a great starting point and keeping things consistent.Jed Hartman, Technical Writer, Google says, "For some years now, our technical writers at Google have used an internal-only editorial style guide for most of our developer documentation.In order to better support external contributors to our open source projects, such as Kubernetes, AMP, or Dart, and to allow for more consistency across developer documentation, we're now making that style guide public.
Following the DefCon demonstration in July that showed how quickly Direct Recording Electronic voting equipment could be hacked, Virginia's State Board of Elections has decided it wants to replace their electronic voting machines in time for the gubernatorial election due on November 7th, 2017.According to The Register, "The decision was announced in the minutes of the Board's September 8th meeting: 'The Department of Elections officially recommends that the State Board of Elections decertify all Direct Recording Electronic (DRE or touchscreen) voting equipment."From the report: With the DefCon bods showing some machines shared a single hard-coded password, Virginia directed the Virginia Information Technology Agency (VITA) to audit the machines in use in the state (the Accuvote TSX, the Patriot, and the AVC Advantage).VITA told the board "each device analyzed exhibited material risks to the integrity or availability of the election process," and the lack of a paper audit trail posed a significant risk of lost votes.Local outlet The News Leader notes that many precincts had either replaced their machines already, or are in the process of doing so.The election board's decision will force a change-over on the 140 precincts that haven't replaced their machines, covering 190,000 of Virginia's ~8.4m population.
Finland's department store Stockmann signed an agreement with ePassi, a mobile payment company in Finland, to formally introduce Alipay as a payment method in the department store.Anna Salmi, chief customer officer of Stockmann Group, said that Alipay is not only a payment method, but also represents a method to attract Chinese tourists.This service will first available at Stockmann's flagship store in the center of Helsinki and gradually expanded to all Stockmann department stores across Finland.They may also expand it into their department stores in Baltic countries.Stockmann has eight large department stores in Finland, Estonia, and Latvia.Chinese tourists have become the second largest foreign consumer group for Stockmann, following Russian tourists.
It's tough to spot a tiny spacecraft against the vastness of space, but the Large Binocular Telescope Observatory in Arizona pulled off the feat when it caught sight of NASA's Osiris-Rex.What makes this especially impressive is the asteroid-studying spacecraft launched a year ago and was a whopping 7 million miles (12 million kilometers) away from Earth at the time.NASA shared a GIF of Osiris-Rex on Friday made from images captured on Sept. 2.It looks like some sort of weird television static.A red box marks the blurry spacecraft's location.Black and white are reversed to help us see the spacecraft better.
The next manufacturer to join the Android One program could be Motorola, according to a leak from Evan Blass.The phone looks identical to the mid-range Moto X4, which Motorola introduced during IFA earlier this month, except for the Android One badge at the bottom of the device.Blass didn’t reveal any other details about the phone, but previous reports suggest we might be looking at the first Android One phone for the United States.Back in January, The Information reported that Google is working with unspecified OEMs to launch Android One in the United States.One potential partner was LG, according to a person familiar to the matter, though The Information stopped short from naming any companies.In April, 9to5Google shared several “rumor tidbits” regarding the US launch of Android One, including the name of the two candidate devices for the initial release: Moto X (2017) and a mysterious HTC E37.
On Wednesday, Senator Claire McCaskill released a report on the findings of a congressional investigation into the practises of American pharmaceutical company Insys Therapeutics.The jaw-dropping allegations detail the process in which agents systematically convinced U.S. health insurers to pay for a highly-addictive opioid cancer pain drug for patients who didn’t have cancer.The case of Insys’s corrupt practises have led to a federal criminal indictment against six former executives on fraud and racketeering charges.McCaskill’s office is leading an ongoing investigation into the complex web of deception that was allegedly employed by the company to trick insurance companies into covering the costs of a sprayable form of fentanyl called Subsys.The powerful opioid was approved for use by cancer patients in 2012 and due to its high costs, insurers required “prior-authorisation” before they would pay.But according to the report, Insys found that it wasn’t selling enough of the drug to cancer patients and implemented a programme to expand its use through a combination of paying illegal kickbacks to doctors and having salespeople use scripts to mislead insurance reps.
ugen shares a report from CNBC: Artificial Intelligence (AI) can now accurately identify a person's sexual orientation by analyzing photos of their face, according to new research.The Stanford University study, which is set to be published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology and was first reported in The Economist, found that machines had a far superior "gaydar" when compared to humans.Slashdot reader randomlygeneratename adds: Researchers built classifiers trained on photos from dating websites to predict the sexual orientation of users.The best classifier used logistic regression over features extracted from a VGG-Face conv-net.The latter was done to prevent overfitting to background, non-facial information.Classical facial feature extraction also worked with a slight drop in accuracy.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Facebook is going into the next year “willing to spend as much as $1 billion” on original video content, building out the roster of exclusive TV on its revamped video tab Watch.In June, the WSJ reported that Facebook was willing to pay up to $3 million per episode for centerpiece shows, and was also interested in original sitcoms with episodic budgets in the six-figures.At the time, VP of media partnerships Nick Grudin told The Verge in an email, “We're funding these shows directly now, but over time we want to help lots of creators make videos funded through revenue sharing products like Ad Break.” Eventually, Facebook wants to pay nothing for the original shows, instead offering the creators a 45 percent share of their ad revenue.Even a $1 billion investment is still a fraction of what Facebook’s digital competitors, like Netflix ($6 billion in 2017) and Amazon ($4.5 billion) shell out, and WSJ reports that the number could fluctuate based on the success of the first crop of shows.However, it’s an aggressive hike from previous investments.Last year, Facebook put up $50 million to pay celebrities and brands (including The Verge’s parent company Vox Media) to make content for its then-new Live platform.
Design thinking and user-centered design are increasingly becoming common concepts for product teams and organizations.A user-centered outlook helps align goals of the business with the goals of the user and translates directly into user engagement and retention.User research helps teams understand the user’s goals, the actions they are taking to achieve those goals, and where in this process does the product help.Yet real user research is still rare.This post can help you make a case for it and choose the right research method for your product.
Taringa, also known as "The Latin American Reddit," has been compromised in a massive data breach that has resulted in the leaked login credentials of almost all of its over 28 million users.The Hackers News reports: The Hacker News has been informed by LeakBase, a breach notification service, who has obtained a copy of the hacked database containing details on 28,722,877 accounts, which includes usernames, email addresses and hashed passwords for Taringa users.The hashed passwords use an ageing algorithm called MD5 -- which has been considered outdated even before 2012 -- that can easily be cracked, making Taringa users open to hackers.Wanna know how weak is MD5?LeakBase team has already cracked 93.79 percent (nearly 27 Million) of hashed passwords successfully within just a few days.The data breach reportedly occurred last month, and the company then alerted its users via a blog post: "It is likely that the attackers have made the database containing nicks, email addresses and encrypted passwords.
Xiaomi has announced the Mi A1, a new flagship phone largely focused on the Indian market with the tagline of “created by Xiaomi, powered by Google.” It has a 5.5-inch 1080p screen, a metal body, and a dual-camera system that includes a secondary telephoto lens for 2x zooming and portraits with shallow depth of field.If that sounds familiar, well, Xiaomi isn’t shy about it:The Mi A1 has Qualcomm’s increasingly ubiquitous Snapdragon 625 processor, which we’ve found to strike a great balance between performance and battery life, and a fairly standard 3080mAh battery.The phone charges over USB-C, unlike Xiaomi’s more budget-orientated offerings, and the company is even including a custom 380V charger that it says is designed to handle India’s frequent power spikes.But the Mi A1’s most distinctive feature is its software: it runs stock Android, not Xiaomi’s own MIUI layer, and is part of Google’s Android One program.Android One launched three years ago with a focus on India as Google aimed to codify the Android experience for low-end smartphones.
Based on the most recent speculation about the upcoming iPhone 8 (or whatever Apple names it), it sounds like the Touch ID and Home button is going to be banished from the front of the device, possibly ending up around the back instead.That would mean one less way of launching Siri - Apple's digital assistant can be invoked with a long press on the Home button in the current iPhones, which is handy if you don't want to shout out a "hey Siri!"voice command to launch it, for whatever reason.Now noted Apple tipster Guilherme Rambo says he's seen source code that the iPhone 8 will allow users to launch Siri with a long press on the Sleep/Wake button instead of the Home button, so you'll still have a way of opening the assistant with a button press.It wasn't immediately clear where Rambo had found the information but he has come to prominence for digging out nuggets of information from the firmware for Apple's HomePod speaker, including references to a 4K Apple TV and facial recognition in the iPhone 8 (which may help ease the pain of a repositioned Touch ID button).There has been a small ripple of speculation that Touch ID could be built into the same Sleep/Wake button as well, which would make the button on the side of your upcoming iPhone device an all-powerful way of unlocking your phone and calling up Siri as well.
Unveiled at the IFA 2017 event in Berlin this week, Lenovo's Windows Mixed Reality headset follows hot on the heels of rival devices from Asus and Dell who were themselves following in the footsteps of Acer and HP.Like its rivals, the Lenovo Explorer is based on a 1,440x1,440 display panel and a pair of cameras in the faceplate which work with an inertial measurement unit (IMU) to offer position and motion tracking without external hardware and double as a means of engaging augmented reality mode - what Microsoft calls 'mixed reality' - without the expense of Microsoft's own HoloLens headset.At the event, Lenovo went into considerable detail about how the Explorer headset - and, by extension, its rivals with equivalent specifications - will support lower-end hardware than pure virtual reality headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive: A system with an Intel Core i3 desktop chip or Core i5 laptop chip featuring Intel HD Graphics 620 or better and with 8GB of RAM will, Lenovo claimed, be enough to drive the headset at 60Hz; upgrading to a discrete graphics processor of Nvidia GTX 965M or AMD Radeon RX 460M or better performance and with HDMI 2.0 support, without changing any of the other specifications, boosts that to 90Hz.Lenovo has confirmed an October launch for the Explorer, which will be made available as a headset-only pack priced at $349 or with a pair of motion-tracking controllers at $449 (around £271 and £347 respectively, excluding taxes.