Zeta Toys – Colored Test Shot of Kronos (Masterpiece-Styled Superion)
Posted by News Fetcher on November 20 '18 at 07:00 AM
By Sentinel from TFW2005:
<img width="455" height="600" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/11/2C22DBC6-8A5D-4494-972A-FD7D686E1A35.png" alt="" />

Zeta Toys brings us their latest batch of pictures from their on-going project Kronos (Masterpiece Superion).  As has been the case in past projects, Zeta’s hallmark is the use of parts-forming in order to create the largest and most stable combining figures currently available. As you can see, Kronos is no exception and is capable of dynamic poses and a degree of articulation that has never before been possible of a combiner of this size and complexity. Zeta is making this amazing Superion as their follow up to their very well received figure Armageddon (Masterpiece Bruticus). Currently all five Combaticons » Continue Reading.

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Iron Factory Legends Sized IF-EX34 Alkaid (IDW Helex) & EF-EX35 Merak (IDW Tesarus) Color Prototypes
Posted by News Fetcher on November 20 '18 at 07:00 AM
By Black Convoy from TFW2005:
<img width="600" height="450" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/11/01-Iron-Factory-Spirits-Of-The-DEC.jpg" alt="" />

Via ToyPlus Weibo we can share new images of the color prototypes of Iron Factory Legends Sized IF-EX34 Alkaid (IDW Helex) & EF-EX35 Merak (IDW Tesarus).  3P Iron Factory continues with their popular Legend Sized releases. They sure got the attention of fans when they announced their take on the complete IDW Decepticon Justice Division (or DJD for short). We have great images of DJD Helex and Tesarus in full colors. As a great extra bonus, we have a group shot with the rest of the DJD members. The detail and poseabilty are sure impressive for Legends scale figures, but there’s » Continue Reading.

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Nine Out of Every 10 Silicon Valley Jobs Pays Less Than In 1997, Report Finds
Posted by News Fetcher on November 20 '18 at 05:10 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's perspective-is-everything department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Mercury News: Nine out of every 10 Silicon Valley jobs pays less now than when Netflix first launched in 1997, despite one of the nation's strongest economic booms and a historically low unemployment rate that outpaces the national average. While tech workers have thrived, employees in the middle of Silicon Valley's income ladder have been hit hardest as their inflation-adjusted wages declined between 12 and 14 percent over the past 20 years, according to a study from UC Santa Cruz's Everett Program for Technology and Social Change and the labor think tank Working Partnership USA, which examined the economic impact of technology companies.

Technology workers saw a median wage increase of 32 percent over the past 20 years, the study found. But Silicon Valley workers in virtually all other areas lost ground during that time. Across all jobs, wages for even the highest-paid 10 percent increased just under 1 percent, the study found. Meanwhile, the region's economy has been booming. Since 2001, the amount of money generated per Silicon Valley resident -- the area's per person GDP -- has grown 74 percent, the study found. That's more than five times faster than the equivalent national growth. Also, a smaller percentage of wealth is going to workers. "In 2001, about 64 percent of the money generated in Silicon Valley went to workers," reports Mercury News. "By 2016, that was down to 60 percent. The drop translated to $9.6 billion -- about $8,480 in potential pay and benefits per worker -- that instead went to investors and owners, according to the study."

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Microsoft Pulls Some Non-Security Updates For Microsoft Office 2010, 2013 and 2016 That It Released Earlier This Month
Posted by News Fetcher on November 20 '18 at 03:50 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's deja-vu department:
Mark Wilson, writing for BetaNews: Having released a series of updates for Office 2010, 2013 and 2016 as part of this month's Patch Tuesday, Microsoft has now pulled two of them and advised sysadmins to uninstall the updates if they have already been installed. In both instances -- KB4461522 and KB2863821 -- Microsoft says that the problematic updates can lead to application crashes. While this is not as serious a problem as, say, data loss, it does little to quieten the fears that have been voiced about the quality control Microsoft has over its updates.

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Instagram Is Cracking Down On Services That Sell Likes, Followers
Posted by News Fetcher on November 20 '18 at 02:30 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's tisk-tisk department:
Instagram will be cutting down on the services that let you buy followers or likes. Starting Monday, Instagram says it will no longer allow "inauthentic likes, follows and comments from accounts that use third-party apps to boost their popularity." That includes buying "Likes" and followers, and paying for other engagement generated by apps that require a user's Instagram login details in order to operate on their behalf. Recode reports: Instagram says it "built machine learning tools" to help detect accounts growing artificially. The move is not retroactive, so Instagram won't be removing "Likes" or followers that accounts have already garnered. It's just going to prevent them in the future. Instagram doesn't list any specific apps or services on its blog post, so it's tough to tell which third-party services will be impacted by this. This kind of activity has been against Instagram's Terms of Service for a while, so it's not entirely clear why Instagram wants to crack down on this now. Here's a logical guess though: Facebook is under more pressure than ever to police the activity on its platforms, given all that has happened with Facebook and Russian election meddling since 2016.

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Transformers: Bumblebee Titan Changer Found at U.S. Retail
Posted by News Fetcher on November 20 '18 at 12:20 AM
By AzT from TFW2005:
<img width="342" height="579" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/11/Bee-Titan-001.jpg" alt="" />

Thanks to the Houston, TX Walmart recon of TFW2005 member Fc203, the arrival of Bumblebee Titan Changers Wave 2 to retail is confirmed. This Bumblebee, sighted in Australia earlier this month and still available online stateside, stands 12 inches tall and rolls out in his modern Camaro scheme after just two transformation steps. Remember to share your sightings news on the 2005 boards!

The post Transformers: Bumblebee Titan Changer Found at U.S. Retail appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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NASA Chooses the Landing Site For Its Mars 2020 Rover Mission
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 11:50 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's target-acquired department:
Five years and sixty potential locations later, NASA has chosen the Jezero Crater as the landing site for its Mars 2020 rover mission. "Slated to launch in July the Mars 2020 rover mission will touch down at the Jezero Crater as NASA's exploration of the Red Planet enters its next phase," reports TechCrunch. From the report: The rover will be looking for signs of habitable conditions -- and past microbial life -- while also collecting rock and soil samples that will be stored in a cache on the Martian surface. "The landing site in Jezero Crater offers geologically rich terrain, with landforms reaching as far back as 3.6 billion years old, that could potentially answer important questions in planetary evolution and astrobiology," said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, in a statement. "Getting samples from this unique area will revolutionize how we think about Mars and its ability to harbor life."

The crater is located on the western edge of Isidis Planitia, a giant impact basin just north of the Martian equator, with some of the oldest and most scientifically interesting landscapes Mars has to offer, according to NASA scientists. Mission scientists believe the 28-mile-wide crater once held an ancient river delta, and could have collected and preserved organic molecules and other potential signs of microbial life from the water and sediments that flowed into the crater. NASA thinks it can collect up to five different kinds of Martian rock, including clays and carbonates that may preserve indicators of past life. There's also the hope that minerals have been swept into the crater over the last billion years which Rover could also collect.

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Toys R Us Canada Launches Toybox Outlets
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 11:00 PM
By AzT from TFW2005:
<img width="600" height="284" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/11/TRU-Canada-ToyBox-001.jpg" alt="" />

Updating a story that we first brought you in June, addressing the successful bid of Fairfax Financial Holdings to keep Toys R Us Canada in operation, we have even more great news for our fellow Transformers fans in Canada: the launch of Toybox outlets! These smaller stores represent the vision of Toys R Us Canada President Melanie Teed-Murch, recently interviewed before the first location’s debut in Guelph’s Stone Road Mall. “We’re trying to show that in smaller markets, we really don’t need 40,000 square-foot stores. I think the future for us as a retailer is definitely smaller venues… for sure. I’d love to » Continue Reading.

The post Toys R Us Canada Launches Toybox Outlets appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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Transformers: Bumblebee Movie Adaptation Junior Novel And Passport To Reading Books Out Now
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 09:40 PM
By Silver Optimus from TFW2005:
<img width="600" height="441" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/11/Transformers-Bumblebee-Movie-Adaptation-Junior-Novel-And-Passport-To-Reading-Amazon.jpg" alt="" />

< article continued at TFW2005 >

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Flame Toys IDW Autobot Megatron Revealed
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 09:40 PM
By onslaught24 from TFW2005:
<img width="448" height="600" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/11/Flame-Toys-Megs-01.jpg" alt="" />

Thanks to the Flame Toys twitter account, we have our first look at their officially licensed, highly-articulated IDW Megatron figure! Like other Flame Toys pieces, this Megatron is not transformable. However he makes up for it with a large amount of articulation, detail, and no doubt diecast parts. It also helps that at this point in his life, Megatron isn’t known for his alt mode, nor is he fond of it. Naturally, this particular Megatron design features an Autobot insignia on his chest which is perfect for fans of the More Than Meets The Eye comic series. No pricing » Continue Reading.

The post Flame Toys IDW Autobot Megatron Revealed appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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Norwegian Company Plans To Power Their Cruise Ships With Dead Fish
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 07:51 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's green-energy department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: Waste fish parts will be used to power ships in a new initiative to use green energy for polluting cruise liners. The leftovers of fish processed for food and mixed with other organic waste will be used to generate biogas, which will then be liquefied and used in place of fossil fuels by the expedition cruise line Hurtigruten. Hurtigruten operates a fleet of 17 ships, and by 2021 aims to have converted at least six of its vessels to use biogas, liquefied natural gas -- a fossil fuel, but cleaner than many alternatives -- and large battery packs, capable of storing energy produced from renewable sources. Biogas can be generated from most forms of organic waste by speeding up and harnessing the natural decomposition process to capture the methane produced. Organic waste is produced by all food industries but is frequently disposed of in landfill, where it contributes to greenhouse gas emissions as it decomposes. Hurtigruten is currently building three new hybrid-powered cruise ships in Norway, to be delivered in the next three years.

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Half-Life Celebrates 20th Anniversary With Fan-Made 'Black Mesa: Xen' Trailer
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 06:31 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's highly-anticipated-remakes department:
On Monday, developer Crowbar Collective released the first trailer for Black Mesa: Xen, the final act of its long running remake of Valve's 1998 game Half-Life, which marked its 20-year anniversary on the same day. "The finale of Half-Life put hero Gordon Freeman in an alien world, and Black Mesa: Xen's upgraded graphics and redesign makes the original's muddy palette look vibrant and strange," reports Motherboard. "It looks just as exciting as it did at the time of the original game's release." From the report: When Valve unleashed Half-Life, it changed video games forever. The first person shooter from what was then a relatively unknown company starred a silent scientist beating down alien headcrabs and shooting human Marines in a novel sci-fi adventure. It was a triumph. Shortly after, in 2003, the Crowbar Collective began work on a remake that would come to be known as Black Mesa. Fan communities routinely reimagine their favorite video games, often as modifications, or mods, of the originals. Black Mesa began life as a free mod for Half-Life 2, but grew into a proper remake. Crowbar Collective added new voice work, changed animations, and tweaked the original game in hundreds of ways big and small. Black Mesa: Xen has a target release date of early 2019.

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Ivanka Trump Used Personal Account For Emails About Government Business
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 06:31 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's hypocrisy-at-its-finest department:
The Washington Post is reporting that Ivanka Trump used a personal email account to send hundreds of emails last year to White House aids, Cabinet officials and her assistants. Many of the emails were "in violation of federal records rules," the report says. Ivanka's practices are reminiscent of the personal email account Hillary Clinton used as secretary of state. From the report: White House ethics officials learned of Trump's repeated use of personal email when reviewing emails gathered last fall by five Cabinet agencies to respond to a public records lawsuit. That review revealed that throughout much of 2017, she often discussed or relayed official White House business using a private email account with a domain that she shares with her husband, Jared Kushner. Some aides were startled by the volume of Ivanka Trump's personal emails -- and taken aback by her response when questioned about the practice. Trump said she was not familiar with some details of the rules, according to people with knowledge of her reaction. A spokesperson for Ivanka Trump's attorney and ethics counsel, Abbe Lowell, "acknowledged that the president's daughter occasionally used her private email before she was briefed on the rules, but he said none of her messages contained classified information," reports Washington Post. "While transitioning into government, after she was given an official account but until the White House provided her the same guidance they had given others who started before she did, Ms. Trump sometimes used her personal account, almost always for logistics and scheduling concerning her family," he said in a statement. He went on to say that her email use was different than that of Clinton. "Ms. Trump did not create a private server in her house or office, no classified information was ever included, the account was never transferred at Trump Organization, and no emails were ever deleted," Mirijanian said.

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In 'Digital India,' Government Hands Out Free Phones To Win Votes
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 05:11 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's how-about-that department:
Forget the old American campaign slogan of a chicken in every pot, or the Indian politician's common pledge to put rice in every bowl. The New York Times reports: Here in the state of Chhattisgarh, the chief minister, Raman Singh, has promised a smartphone in every home -- and he is using the government-issued devices to reach voters as he campaigns in legislative elections that conclude on Tuesday. [...] The phones are the latest twist in digital campaigning by the B.J.P., which controls the national and state government and is deft at using tools like WhatsApp groups and Facebook posts to influence voters. The B.J.P. government in Rajasthan, which holds state elections next month, is also subsidizing phones and data plans for residents, and party leaders are considering extending the model to other states.

Chhattisgarh's $71 million free-phone program -- known by the acronym SKY after its name in Hindi -- is supposed to bridge the digital divide in this state of 26 million people, which is covered by large patches of forest and counts 7,000 villages that do not even have a wireless data signal. The plan is to add hundreds of cellphone towers and give a basic smartphone to every college student and one woman in every household to connect more families to the internet and help fulfill the central government's goal of a "Digital India." But this election season, many of the 2.9 million people who have received the phones have found themselves targeted by the B.J.P.

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New Experimental Lockheed Supersonic Jet Starts Production
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 05:11 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's currently-in-the-works department:
Lockheed Martin's X-59 Quiet Supersonic Technology aircraft is officially in "the manufacturing phase," bringing the company "one step closer to enabling supersonic travel for passengers around the world." The experimental jet was awarded a contract from NASA earlier this year as it is capable of flying at supersonic speeds without creating loud supersonic booms. Currently, commercial supersonic aircraft are banned from flying over land because of the noise and potential damage the booms may cause. WTOP reports: "The long, slender design of the aircraft is the key to achieving a low sonic boom," said Peter Iosifidis, Low Boom Flight Demonstrator program manager at Lockheed Martin. "As we enter into the manufacturing phase, the aircraft structure begins to take shape, bringing us one step closer to enabling supersonic travel for passengers around the world," he said.

Lockheed expects to conduct its first flight in 2021 and gather community response data on the acceptability of the "quiet sonic boom" the plane creates. NASA will use that information to establish an acceptable commercial supersonic noise standard to overturn current regulations banning supersonic travel over land. The X-59 will cruise at a speed of about 940 mph and an altitude of 55,000 feet. Lockheed says it will create a sound about as loud as a car door closing, instead of a deafening sonic boom.

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Russia Wants DNC Hack Lawsuit Thrown Out, Citing International Conventions
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 03:51 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's I-want-a-pony department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from ZDNet: The Russian Federation has responded to a lawsuit filed by the Democratic National Committee and has requested the overseeing court to throw out the lawsuit altogether. The lawsuit, filed by the DNC in April 2018, names a slew of figures as defendants, such as the Russian state, Russia's military intelligence service GRU, the hacker known as Guccifer 2.0, WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange, and several members of the Trump campaign, such as Donald Trump, Jr., Paul Manafort, Roger Stone, Jared Kushner, and George Papadopoulos. According to an 87-page indictment, the DNC accused Russia and the other defendants of carrying out the hacking of DNC servers in 2016 and then leaking data online via the WikiLeaks portal in an orchestrated manner for the benefit of the Trump presidential campaign.

< article continued at Slashdot's I-want-a-pony department >

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Yoshua Bengio, a Grand Master of Modern AI, is Worried About Its Future
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 03:51 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's food-for-thought department:
Yoshua Bengio is a grand master of modern artificial intelligence. Alongside Geoff Hinton and Yan LeCun, Bengio is famous for championing a technique known as deep learning that in recent years has gone from an academic curiosity to one of the most powerful technologies on the planet. Here's an excerpt from an interview he gave to MIT Technology Review: MIT TR: What do you make of the idea that there's an AI race between different countries?
Bengio: I don't like it. I don't think it's the right way to do it. We could collectively participate in a race, but as a scientist and somebody who wants to think about the common good, I think we're better off thinking about how to both build smarter machines and make sure AI is used for the well-being of as many people as possible.

MIT TR: Are you worried about just a few AI companies, in the West and perhaps China, dominating the field of AI?
Bengio: Yes, it's another reason why we need to have more democracy in AI research. It's that AI research by itself will tend to lead to concentrations of power, money, and researchers. The best students want to go to the best companies. They have much more money, they have much more data. And this is not healthy. Even in a democracy, it's dangerous to have too much power concentrated in a few hands.

MIT TR:There has been a lot of controversy over military uses of AI. Where do you stand on that?
Bengio: I stand very firmly against.
MIT TR: Even non-lethal uses of AI?
< article continued at Slashdot's food-for-thought department >

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Google Patents Motorized, Omnidirectional VR Sneakers
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 02:31 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's no-walking-required department:
Google has patented motorized, omnidirectional virtual-reality sneakers that may solve the "limited space" problem associated with the interactive computer-generated experience. Ars Technica reports: Google's patent describes what are essentially motorized VR roller skates that will let the user walk normally while the motors and wheels work to negate your natural locomotion and keep you inside the VR safe zone. As the patent puts it, Google's new kicks will let you walk "seemingly endlessly in the virtual environment" while keeping you in one spot in real life. Google's shoe solution would track the user's feet, just like how VR controllers are tracked today. The tracking would know when you're too close to the virtual walls of your VR area, and the system would wheel you back into place.

Patents are always written to give the broadest possible coverage of an idea, but Google's patent shows normal wheels, tracks, and even omnidirectional mecanum wheels as possible wheels for the VR shoe bottoms. Omnidirectional wheels would be great, as they would allow you to do things like sidestep, while still having your position corrected by the shoes.

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Bitcoin Falls Below $5,000 For First Time Since October 2017
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 02:31 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's downward-spiral department:
The value of Bitcoin has hit a new low of $4,951, bringing the total value of all Bitcoin in existence to below $87 billion. Much of the turmoil can be attributed to the split of Bitcoin Cash on November 15th. The Bitcoin offshoot has been split into two different cryptocurrencies, which are now in competition with each other. The BBC reports: Bitcoin exchange Kraken said in a blog post that it regarded one of the two new Bitcoin Cash crypto-currencies -- Bitcoin SV -- as "an extremely risky investment." At its peak, in November 2017, it briefly hit $19,783 - which means the price has fallen by about 75%. After the excitements of last year when the price soared to nearly $20,000 and then tumbled, Bitcoin has been rather dull and stable for much of 2018, settling between $6,000 and $7,000.

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The Weapons Of War Perished
Posted by News Fetcher on November 19 '18 at 01:51 PM
By Tycho@penny-arcade.com (Tycho) from Penny Arcade:
I was in the beta for Battlefield 1942, back in what must have been 2002. The key to open your parachute was bound to 9 for some reason, which I thought was kinda funny. I was a dedicated fan of the franchise for years, and when we left Desert Combat for Battlefield 2 I think that when I was at my most ardent - ready squads, and novel chain of command concepts really made us feel like part of a whole. I also loved Bad Company, like… a lot. It was the tech, at the end of the day. If you can make a wall not a wall it is a new way to play but makes your vehicles -…

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