By msmash from Slashdot's major-discovery department
Laser-toting archaeologists have discovered an entire new city in the Central American jungle, the National Geographic reported this week. From the report: In what's being hailed as a "major breakthrough" in Maya archaeology, researchers have identified the ruins of more than 60,000 houses, palaces, elevated highways, and other human-made features that have been hidden for centuries under the jungles of northern Guatemala. Using a revolutionary technology known as LiDAR (short for "Light Detection And Ranging"), scholars digitally removed the tree canopy from aerial images of the now-unpopulated landscape, revealing the ruins of a sprawling pre-Columbian civilization that was far more complex and interconnected than most Maya specialists had supposed. "The LiDAR images make it clear that this entire region was a settlement system whose scale and population density had been grossly underestimated," said Thomas Garrison, an Ithaca College archaeologist and National Geographic Explorer who specializes in using digital technology for archaeological research.Read Replies (0)
By msmash from Slashdot's shape-of-things-to-come department
Key findings from a Gallup poll: Nearly three-quarters of adults (73%) say an increased use of AI will eliminate more jobs than it creates (PDF). Results are consistent across most demographic groups. However, those with blue-collar jobs are particularly pessimistic, with 82% saying the transition will result in a net job loss, compared with 71% of those with white-collar jobs. Nearly half of Americans (49%) say "soft" skills, such as teamwork, communication, creativity and critical thinking, are the most important for U.S. workers to cultivate to avoid losing their jobs to AI. Alternatively, 51% say learning "hard" skills, including math, science, coding and the ability to work with data, are the most important to maintain a job in the face of new technology adoption. When asked to choose among seven options concerning who should pay for retraining, a clear majority of U.S. adults overall (61%) say employers should fund these programs. The federal government comes in second at 50%.Read Replies (0)
By msmash from Slashdot's unprecedented-scope department
In a genetic study of unprecedented size, scientists have searched for inherited causes of insomnia in the DNA 1,310,010 people. From a report: They found 956 different genes linked to the sleep disorder, drawing closer to an explanation of what causes it and, perhaps, to new ways to treat it. The study appears to be the first gene search to involve DNA collected from more than one million people. "It's amazingly massive," says Stuart Ritchie, a psychologist involved with genetics research at the University of Edinburgh. On Twitter, scientists let loose with superlatives: "Holy cr*p," "mammoth," and "Wow!" The project involved crunching genetic and medical information collected from the UK Biobank and the consumer DNA testing company 23andMe. It was led by Danielle Posthuma, a neuroscientist specializing in statistical genetics at Vrije University, in Amsterdam.Read Replies (0)
By BeauHD from Slashdot's always-watching department
An anonymous reader shares a report from CNBC, written by Gabriel Weinberg, CEO and founder of DuckDuckGo: You may know that hidden trackers lurk on most websites you visit, soaking up your personal information. What you may not realize, though, is 76 percent of websites now contain hidden Google trackers, and 24 percent have hidden Facebook trackers, according to the Princeton Web Transparency & Accountability Project. The next highest is Twitter with 12 percent. It is likely that Google or Facebook are watching you on many sites you visit, in addition to tracking you when using their products. As a result, these two companies have amassed huge data profiles on each person, which can include your interests, purchases, search, browsing and location history, and much more. They then make your sensitive data profile available for invasive targeted advertising that can follow you around the Internet.
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By BeauHD from Slashdot's fresh-coat-of-paint department
Apple today has added refurbished iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus models to its online store for the first time in the United States. MacRumors reports: iPhone 7 models are available in all three storage capacities, including 32GB for $499, 128GB for $589, and 256GB for $679, reflecting savings of 10 percent off Apple's current prices for brand new models. All five colors are currently in stock, including Black, Jet Black, Silver, Gold, and Rose Gold. iPhone 7 Plus models with 32GB or 128GB of storage are available for $599 and $689 respectively, which is also 10 percent off. There are no 256GB models in stock. Available colors include Black, Gold, and Rose Gold. Apple says all refurbished iPhone models are thoroughly inspected, tested, cleaned, and repackaged with a new white box and all manuals and accessories. Apple also installs a new battery and replaces the outer shell, making it nearly impossible to distinguish between a refurbished and brand new iPhone. Any refurbished iPhone model comes with Apple's standard one-year warranty effective on the date the device is delivered. The warranty can be extended to up to two years from the original purchase date with AppleCare+, at a cost of $129 for the iPhone 7 and $149 for the iPhone 7 Plus in the United States.Read Replies (0)
By BeauHD from Slashdot's don't-shoot-the-messenger department
A federal appeals court in San Francisco ruled yesterday that Twitter is not legally responsible for the deaths of two Americans in an ISIS-linked attack in Jordan, even though the Islamic State may have used its access to Twitter to spread its message of terrorism and recruit new members. The decision upholds a 2016 ruling on the same case, which was filed by the families of the victims of the terrorist attack. SFGate reports: "Without Twitter, the explosive growth of ISIS over the last few years into the most-feared terrorist group in the world would not have been possible," the suit said. The Americans, Lloyd Fields Jr. and James Creach, were former police officers working for U.S. companies training law enforcement officers in Jordan. They were among five people shot to death in November 2015 by a Jordanian police captain, later identified as a member of an Islamic State terror cell. Islamic State said it was responsible for killing the "American crusaders."
As an example of the Twitter activity, the women's lawyers showed a snapshot of an undated tweet, allegedly from Islamic State, that declared "there is no life without jihad." As of December 2014, the suit said, the terror group had 70,000 Twitter accounts, of which 79 were "official" Islamic State accounts. Only recently, the lawyers said, had Twitter changed its rules to prohibit threats of violence or terrorism and ordered the suspension of accounts promoting terrorism. But the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said the suit failed to show a direct connection between Islamic State's use of Twitter and the fatal attack. "At most, the (suit) establishes that Twitter's alleged provision of material support to ISIS facilitated the organization's growth and ability to plan and execute terrorist acts," Judge Milan Smith said in the 3-0 ruling, which upheld a federal judge's dismissal of the suit earlier.Read Replies (0)