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Exploding Kittens - App Pick
App Pick - Exploding Kittens

Twitter cracking down on abuse once again

Twitter is once again cracking down on abuse, something they weren't able to do last time they tried to crack down on abuse. They're going to try to stop things like allowing people to start new accounts after they've been permanently banned and cracking down on accounts that are only made to harass others. While all good in theory, the time to work on some of these issues was probably several years ago before people moved onto other social networks, but only time will tell if it is too late or not. USA Today as the full story.

Fairly or not, Twitter is known the Internet over as the place the trolls are.

Stung by criticism that Twitter has allowed harassment and abuse to spread unchecked and under growing pressure from Wall Street to deliver growth, CEO Jack Dorsey has pledged "a completely new approach to abuse." Twitter's vice president of engineering Ed Ho said last week the company will keep working on combating abuse "until we’ve made a significant impact that people can feel."

Samsung battery factory starts on fire

This next story feels like piling on, however, Samsung had a "minor fire" at their battery factory this week. The best part of the story is that it was caused by a bin of faulty batteries. Pretty sure Samsung was hoping never to hear the words battery and fire in the same sentence ever again only to have this happen. PCGamer has the full story.

Reuters describes it as a "minor fire" at the Samsung SDI Co Ltd factory, one that was caused by waste products containing faulty batteries. The fire has since been extinguished and there were no injuries reported, but this is the last thing Samsung needed to happen. It also reflects poorly on lithium-ion battery technology.

Oculus closing some demo locations

Facebook was pretty excited about showing off their Oculus VR headset and worked a deal with Best Buy to setup 500 demo stations across the US. Unfortunately the demos might not have gone over as well as they were hoping and some stores were reporting days where no demos were given. Facebook is blaming the change on seasonal changes, but the end result is 200 of the 500 demo sites are closing. Business Insider takes a closer look at why VR isn't blasting off as quickly as some were hoping.

Facebook is closing around 200 of its 500 Oculus virtual reality demo stations at Best Buy locations across the US, Business Insider has learned.

The scaling back of Facebook's first big retail push for VR comes after workers from multiple Best Buy pop-ups told BI that it was common for them to go days without giving a single demonstration. An internal memo seen by BI and sent to affected employees by a third-party contractor said the closings were because of "store performance."

Google Pulling off Infamous Hollywood "Enhance" Photos

It's long been a pet-peeve of mine when a movie shows some horrible video that a detective needs enhanced and magically they can pull detail out of seemingly nothing. While that has been movie effects, Google has risen to the challenge and now can pull off some pretty amazing enhancements from a pixelated 8x8 source. They can turn it into something much, much better - but the process will not be available for general consumers - yet.

Google Brain and DeepMind are two of Alphabet's deep learning research arms. The former has published some interesting research recently, such as two AIs creating their own cryptographic algorithm; the latter, of course, was thrust into the limelight last year when its AlphaGo AI defeated the world's best Go players.

Source: ARSTechnica

Sony's Latest Sensor Shoots Amazing Slow-mo Video

Slow-Motion video is not only fun, it can be particularly useful for certain applications. The problem is that to get high-quality and high-resolution slow-mo video, you have to spend a ton of money. Sony is hoping to change that with their latest sensor that packs DRAM into the sensor itself, enabling it to buffer video from an otherwise-two-layer sensor. The end results is 1000fps at 1080p - from a smartphone.

That's all good, but the sensor's standout feature is super slow-mo. As shown below, 1,000 fps is pushing into Phantom Flex camera territory, letting you see the impact of a ball on a bat or a dog vault in precise detail. What's more, Sony says that smartphones could detect sudden movement and automatically launch the high-speed mode, so you only use it when needed.

Source: Engadget

Tesla Model S P100D sets 0-60mph Record

After watching the last episode of the Prime Video "Grand Tour", I can agree with Clarkson that electric vehicles are not ready to replace petroleum vehicles for long-distance and practical daily use. I am, however, impressed with the Tesla Model S and the performance they are managing to squeeze out of it with Ludicrous Mode. The 2017 Model S P100D is the fastest Tesla to date and has now managed a 0-60mph in a bone-crushing 2.28 seconds. Zing!

The folks over at Motor Trend had the chance to test of the 2017 Model S P100D and it was no disappointment. Like previous models that shattered 0 to 60 times, the new P100D became the fastest Tesla to date, burying an impressive time set previously by the P90D. By popping the vehicle into "Ludicrous" mode, the P100D is able to give the driver an incredible amount of power and torque that is unmatched.

Source: Neowin

Weekly Tech Update #389 - Snapchat is Worth Billions

We have just posted up Episode #389 of Weekly Tech Update. In this episode we are discussing Snapchat is worth billions, Facebook owes millions and LG’s 5K monitor makes people sad. We have those stories and more at the links below...


Download Episode #389
Show Notes
Subscribe to the feed.
Subscribe in iTunes!
Get it on Google Play! --New--

Chrome Adds Bluetooth API to Browser

Google has done some great things with their Chrome browser, but then they come along with version 56 and pull off a stunt like adding a Bluetooth API that allows a web page to communicate directly with a Bluetooth device. While that all seems good and fine, Bluetooth security is less that adequate and now a script running on a web page could actually access and control a connected Bluetooth device such as mouse, keyboard, phone contacts and more. I'm not sure why we need this support, but Google tries to come up with a good explanation.

As pointed out to The Register last year by privacy researcher Lukasz Olejnik, the API makes it possible for site owners like Google to gather a huge amount of privacy-intrusive information from your nearby electronics. The Bluetooth Web API community would have trouble denying this, since its first example code is for retrieving data from a heart rate monitor.

Source: TheRegister

Hands On With Microsoft's Windows 10 Cloud

There has been a rogue ISO of Windows 10 Cloud floating around the web and people have been playing with it and installing it on some current hardware. Their goal is to be as nosey as possible and see what Microsoft has in store with their ChromeOS competitor. The reality is that this is super early and the product hasn't even been officially announced. Take all you see and read below with a spoonful of salf.

When we went hands on with the new build, we did found two things that are notably missing: OneDrive and PowerShell. There is no OneDrive integration with the File Explorer, so your only option at this time is the UWP app. PowerShell scripts don't work either; however, this seems like something that might change in the future, as the option to "Run with PowerShell" still shows up.

Source: Neowin

CoolerMaster To Market Mini MasterCase (Puzzle)

CoolerMaster is all about building great cases, and this one would be pretty sweet if you were a Smurf. The Mini MasterCase Wooden unit is a 30-piece puzzle that actually looks pretty amazing when all said and done. I don't think it will fit much hardware - but it would be awesome if they built this thing to hold a Raspberry Pi or some other micro system.

Mini MasterCase

Source: CoolerMaster

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