Kenneth Childs

Kenneth Childs

Followers 112
Following 23
UK
With the launch of 5G services sort-of imminent, there's a lot of work being done testing and trialling 5G services in various part of the country.Even if most of those locations seem to be in or near London.Now, though, the government has decided it wants to have a 5G trial on trans-Pennine train routes between Manchester and Leeds, and is looking for someone to get involved.The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is calling for "expressions of interest" from companies willing to take part in the £35 million trial.It's part of the the Trans Pennine Initiative, and designed to explore what 5G connectivity could bring to the transport sector.Announced last year the TPI is all about "providing high quality passenger connectivity using trackside infrastructure."
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UK
You made a bit of a mistake two years ago didn't you?You saw that super-cheap [insert name of handset here] contract phone deal and you snapped it up, feeling very pleased with the bargain you'd bagged.The 1GB data allowance didn't matter, you told anybody who would listen, as you didn't really use your phone away from Wi-Fi anyway.And then your commute got a bit longer, so you had to start rationing episodes of Stranger Things on Netflix.It's time, as they say, to go SIMO.After all: "The quality of decision is like the well-timed swoop of a falcon which enables it to strike and destroy its victim."
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US
Google and Facebook have made the headlines so frequently in recent days that news about them is beginning to sound more like salacious celebrity gossip than reports about tech companies.In fact, one recent headline claims that “Google consumes one-third of our digital minds.”The headline was inspired by a study by Brian Wieser, a researcher at Pivotal, that found consumers spent 34.2% of their time online in June using Google products, including Waze and YouTube.If consumers are no longer spending as much time on Facebook and have migrated to Google, should advertisers follow suite?Then, a month after the GDPR took effect, it was announced that Facebook’s stock dropped 20%, losing $120 billion in value.And most important for marketers, Facebook ads are getting more expensive, yet people seem to be less receptive.
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UK
Researchers have discovered that browser add-ons and extensions intended to protect your privacy are not as secure as you may think.Extensions, add-ons and in-browser software designed to protect your security and privacy have holes which may allow threat actors and surveillance scripts to circumvent such barriers.Academics from the Catholic University in Leuven, Belgium (KU Leuven) have uncovered ways to bypass the protections of these offerings which are designed to prevent third-parties from tracking your online activities.Presented at the USENIX Security ’18 conference, the research, titled “Who left open the cookie jar?” reveals how features such as Tracking Protection in Firefox can be circumvented to snatch user cookies.Cookies are automatically tagged onto HTTP requests and are used to track pages visited, purchases made and can also be used to login to website domains.However, if obtained by threat actors they may be used in cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks to hijack accounts and steal sensitive data.
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US
Deutsche Telekom is ceasing its Iran operations to comply with US sanctions and help to ensure its proposed T-Mobile/Sprint merger goes ahead.The proposed Sprint/T-Mobile merger is one of the biggest things happening in Deutsche Telekom’s business.With tensions between the US and Iran strained, the company has decided to cut off ties with Tehran.Sanctions against Iran were reimposed earlier this month which means any US company found dealing with the country would not be allowed to do business with US firms.For a company like Deutsche Telekom, the US is a far more important partner.Deutsche Telekom has a minimal presence in Iran through its Detecon subsidiary.
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UK
Game of Thrones may be ending in 2019, but the song of ice and fire will continue.This era in Westeros’ history is vast and vague, with bits and pieces of knowledge spanning its 4,000 years.While some of the details we do have about it come from the ASoIaF series, most of the information we have on the Age of Heroes comes from Martin’s companion book, The World of Ice and Fire.And even though Martin is the creator of that world, much of his companion guide is presented like recollections of real ancient history — sometimes unreliable, and often open to interpretation.It began with the Pact, an alliance between the First Men and the Children of the Forest, where the Children surrendered most of the land in Westeros in exchange for a promise that the First Men wouldn’t chop down their sacred weirwood trees.This era saw the rise and fall of kings and empires, eventually leading to the big noble houses of Westeros, like the Starks and Lannisters.
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UK
Toys for Bob has announced that the release date of the Spyro Reignited Trilogy has been pushed back as the remasters require “more love and care”.The developer announced the delay in an Activision game blog.Initially the Reignited Trilogy was due for release on September 21, but the launch date has been pushed back to November 13 to give the development team more time to polish the games.“Everyone here at Toys for Bob is so proud to be reigniting the original Spyro trilogy after all these years,” co-studio head Paul Yan wrote in the blog.“We're deeply committed to getting these games right, so we’ve decided to move the release date of Spyro Reignited Trilogy to November 13, 2018.“I really hoped that you would be rescuing dragons and scorching Rhynocs sooner, but the Trilogy needs more love and care.
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China
Go-Jek is “extremely close” to profitability in all segments – except for transportation (Indonesia).Co-founder and CEO Nadiem Makarim said that he expects the ride-hailing company to be fully profitable “probably” within the next few years.But Go-Jek’s transportation offerings are not as close to turning a profit as other segments, though Makarim said that he now considers food delivery to be the company’s core business.Go-Jek revealed plans earlier this year to expand beyond its home market to other Southeast Asian countries.Makarim said that Go-Viet – its Vietnamese app – has grabbed 15 percent market share in Ho Chi Minh City since launching at the start of August.He also expressed a positive outlook on Go-Jek’s foray into Singapore, claiming that authorities in the city-state are “particularly eager to bring back competition” following Grab’s acquisition of Uber’s regional operations earlier this year.
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UK
On-Call Friday is upon us once more, which can mean only one thing: it’s time for On Call, our weekly instalment of Reg readers’ tech support frustrations.“There had been no upgrades for months, maybe years.”Over the space of a few months, Luca was in charge of upgrading and patching everything that needed it, and moving the infrastructure to a cheaper, uncompromised and upgraded cloud solution.“The websites were fixed, the load-time got to a 1.3s standard, which was a dream compared to the previous state.”Even better, Luca finished a few days ahead of schedule, leaving time to check everything was working properly, and to see if there were any tweaks needed to improve the infrastructure further.“Feeling no stress at all, I got to work half an hour late, walking in slowly with a big cappuccino in my hand.”
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UK
Unfortunately, it will be the second time this year that an artist has sent a reflective sculpture into space.Back in January, Rocket Lab CEO Peter Beck placed his three-foot-wide mirror ball, called Humanity Star, into orbit, attracting the ire of scientists, who complained that the bright object might interfere with astronomical observations.As Jonathan McDowell, an astrophysicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, told Gizmodo earlier this year, “It’s the space equivalent of someone putting a neon advertising billboard right outside your bedroom window.” Indeed, Paglen’s Orbital Reflector, which is about the length of a football field, has the potential to be even more annoying than Beck’s disco ball, despite its potentially brief life.Once in low Earth orbit, the free flyers will dispense over 70 satellites at various intervals, including the CubeSat containing the collapsed sculpture.Following deployment, the sculpture should inflate into a large reflective balloon, orbiting the planet at a height of 350 miles (575 km) once every 90 minutes.Paglen has teamed up with the Nevada Museum of Art, Spaceflight Industries, and engineers from Global Western, a small, independent aerospace firm, to make this project happen.
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China
China’s ride-hailing company Didi Chuxing earned the title of “Uber Slayer” in 2016.By selling its China business to its rival, Uber confirmed that the Chinese market was not only full of potential but peril.Didi now holds between 90-95% of the market, according to most often repeated estimates.Its platform Gaode Yixing integrates not only bike-rental options from ofo and Mobike, but also Alibaba’s travel platform Fliggy, and more.Chinese car manufacturer Geely owns 90% of its stake and most of its car fleet consists of Geely’s electric cars.As Caocao’s chairman Liu Jinliang told local media, manufacturers have to enter online car booking because there will be significant changes in the automotive industry in the future.
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China
In response to the recent backlash over the “100% China developed” browser engine, Redcore has issued an official apology on WeChat, admitting that there, in fact, was “some degree of exaggeration” in its recent marketing and fundraising efforts.The Redcore team said they are deeply sorry for the claims they made that might have misguided the public.“Redcore browser engine is the adaptation and innovation based on the globally-accepted open-source Chromium kernel architecture.We did not mention this clearly during our marketing campaign, which might have misled people into thinking that we built the browser engine from the ground up.”Redcore said it should have focused more on the browser’s actual functionality and customer value, instead of insisting that it is made in China.Redcore came into the public’s attention after reportedly raising RMB 250 million from “large public traded companies and government agencies.” The company also touted that the internet browser is used by the Chinese government and can break the US monopoly, according to CNBC.
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US
Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, has had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year, and now he's opened up about just that in a far-reaching interview with The New York Times.Tesla Model 3 production was lower than anticipated last year and the Model X crash in March only amplified worries over Tesla's automated driving systems.In July, Musk and his team he built a submarine to rescue a soccer team trapped in a Thailand cave rescue.He was later told it was not practical for the rescue mission and, after it went unused, called one of the divers involved in the rescue a "pedo guy" on Twitter, drawing scorn from many.Right now, he's in hot water over tweets that suggested he would be taking Tesla private -- which sees him embroiled in a federal investigation with the Securities and Exchange Commission.In the wake of these issues Musk, CEO of Tesla, SpaceX and founder of The Boring Company, reflected on his "excruciating" year, calling it the "most difficult and painful" of his entire career.
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UK
Google may be under fire again for allegedly working with the Chinese government to create a censored version of its Search engine but it doesn’t actually have to lift a finger for its technology to be used for that same purpose.A new web browser named Redcore has grabbed the spotlight in China for claiming to have developed a browser that has “broken the American monopoly”.Except that now its CEO is admitting that it did, after all, build it using Chrome, an American company technology.It’s no surprise that Redcore would garner that much attention.Its stated goal is to protect its corporate customers when using cloud services through encryption and the like.Given such customers include the Chinese government, among others, you can probably connect the dots on what that might imply.
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UK
HTC has announced that its Viveport VR store will be landing on the Facebook-made Oculus Rift from September 4, along with its associated subscription-based service.Many VR games are already compatible with both HTC and Oculus hardware, and HTC’s VR store currently features some 500 titles when accessed via its own headsets, the HTC Vive and Vive Pro.Developers with titles on the Viveport store will specifically have to opt-in to add Rift compatibility, however, meaning at launch the new Oculus storefront won't have access to that full spectrum of titles.HTC's subscription service costs $8.99 a month and allows subscribers to access five VR titles at any one time, having to ‘return’ one before they’re able to rent out something new.The intention is to allow users to trial titles before committing to a purchase, and alleviates some of the stress of paying top dollar for a new title.In HTC’s statement, Viveport’s president Rikard Steiber claims that the decision to expand availability to the company’s primary rival was made to help both the creators of VR content and the users.
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US
We got our first look at Danny Rand's return at Comic-Con 2018 and now Netflix has dropped the first official trailer for Iron Fist's second season.It gives us another look at Iron Fist's comic-inspired outfit, Danny's former bestie Davos (who doesn't seem so friendly anymore) and plenty of close-ups of fists being clenched, faces being kicked and even a heavy shot to the groin.The increasing levels of fisticuffs will come as good news to those who criticized the show's first season for playing it safe.You can view the full trailer below.Punchier, kickier and at least double the amount of glowing fists.All 10 episodes of Iron Fist season 2 will premiere on Netflix Sept. 7.
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UK
Google recently boasted about its more than 2 billion active Android devices in the world.The global population is, of course, much larger than that and a fraction of that total are unable to enjoy the conveniences of modern mobile lifestyles because of one physical disability or another.While tech companies naturally give more focus on their able-bodied customers, they have a responsibility, sometimes even legal duty, to make their products accessible to everyone.Just weeks after launching Android 9 Pie, Google is announcing a new specification for Android designed to deliver high-quality audio to hearing aids.According to the World Health Organization, there are 466 million people in the world suffering from disabling hearing loss.Worse, that number is expected to double by 2050.
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UK
A survey published this month suggests liberal gamers have a bit more interest in Overwatch and its like, while gamers in conservative areas are more interested in Call of Duty.ValueGamers, a gaming research site, conducted the survey using Google Search data on the seven most popular esports games within each metro area of the United States.That interest was then cross-referenced with the area’s voting data, as gathered by Fivethirtyeight.In the spectrum of games, Overwatch fell to the more liberal side, while Call of Duty was on the conservative side.Starcraft, meanwhile, fell in the middle.A spokesperson for ValueGamers suggested conservative states favor the more realistic nature of Call of Duty, while liberal audiences might prefer the lighter, more cartoon-ish action of Overwatch.
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ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, announced today that Linda Gesenhues of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and Markus Höhnerbach of RWTH Aachen University are the recipients of the 2018 ACM-IEEE CS George Michael Memorial HPC Fellowships.Gesenhues is being recognized for her work on finite element simulation of turbidity currents with an emphasis on non-Newtonian fluids.Höhnerbach is being recognized for his work on portable optimizations of complex molecular dynamics codes.The Fellowships are jointly presented by ACM and the IEEE Computer Society.Because of their density, turbid fluids move differently than non-turbid fluids--frequently cascading downward as they are impacted by gravity.A challenge of understanding turbidity currents is cataloging the range of possible movements a fluid may make based on the variables in its surrounding environment.
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Now, computer scientists from the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria), the University of Tokyo, and CONICET have created an interactive design tool that allows non-experts to create molds for an object of their choice.The software will be presented at this year's prestigious SIGGRAPH conference, one of IST Austria's five successful submissions.While the process is fairly simple, creating the mold to produce an object is extremely difficult, and a multitude of considerations go into its creation.Similarly, 3D-printing the desired number of objects would be far too time- and resource-intensive.CoreCavity, a new interactive design tool, solves this problem, and allows users to quickly and easily design molds for creating hollow, free-form objects.Created by Kazutaka Nakashima, a PhD student from the University of Tokyo visiting IST Austria, Thomas Auzinger (IST Austria), Emmanuel Iarussi (CONICET, IST Austria), Ran Zhang (IST Austria), Takeo Igarashi (University of Tokyo), and Bernd Bickel (IST Austria), this software tool opens up opportunities for small businesses and enthusiasts.
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