High School in China Installs Facial Recognition Cameras To Monitor Students' Attentiveness
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 07:10 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's going-extreme department:
A high school in Hangzhou City, Zhejiang Province located on the eastern coast of China, has employed facial recognition technology to monitor students' attentiveness in class, local media reports. From the report: At Hangzhou Number 11 High School, three cameras at the front of the classroom scan students' faces every 30 seconds, analyzing their facial expressions to detect their mood, according to a May 16 report in the state-run newspaper The Paper. The different moods -- surprised, sad, antipathy, angry, happy, afraid, neutral -- are recorded and averaged during each class. A display screen, only visible to the teacher, shows the data in real-time. A certain value is determined as a student not paying enough attention. A video shot by Zhejiang Daily Press revealed that the system -- coined the "smart classroom behavior management system" by the school -- also analyzes students' actions, categorized into: reading, listening, writing, standing up, raising hands, and leaning on the desk.

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In Bob We Trust - THUNDERCATS ...SO?
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 04:41 PM
By moviebob from MovieBob:

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Microsoft Developing a Tool To Help Engineers Catch Bias in Algorithms
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 04:31 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's a-fight-within department:
Microsoft is developing a tool that can detect bias in artificial intelligence algorithms with the goal of helping businesses use AI without running the risk of discriminating against certain people. From a report: Rich Caruana, a senior researcher on the bias-detection tool at Microsoft, described it as a "dashboard" that engineers can apply to trained AI models. "Things like transparency, intelligibility, and explanation are new enough to the field that few of us have sufficient experience to know everything we should look for and all the ways that bias might lurk in our models," he told MIT Technology Review. Bias in algorithms is an issue increasingly coming to the fore. At the Re-Work Deep Learning Summit in Boston this week, Gabriele Fariello, a Harvard instructor in machine learning and chief information officer at the University of Rhode Island, said that there are "significant ... problems" in the AI field's treatment of ethics and bias today. "There are real decisions being made in health care, in the judicial system, and elsewhere that affect your life directly," he said.

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How the Math Men Overthrew the Mad Men
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 03:12 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's long-reads department:
An anonymous reader shares an excerpt of a New Yorker piece: Once, Mad Men ruled advertising. They've now been eclipsed by Math Men -- the engineers and data scientists whose province is machines, algorithms, pureed data, and artificial intelligence. Yet Math Men are beleaguered, as Mark Zuckerberg demonstrated when he humbled himself before Congress, in April. Math Men's adoration of data -- coupled with their truculence and an arrogant conviction that their 'science' is nearly flawless -- has aroused government anger, much as Microsoft did two decades ago. The power of Math Men is awesome. Google and Facebook each has a market value exceeding the combined value of the six largest advertising and marketing holding companies. Together, they claim six out of every ten dollars spent on digital advertising, and nine out of ten new digital ad dollars. They have become more dominant in what is estimated to be an up to two-trillion-dollar annual global advertising and marketing business. Facebook alone generates more ad dollars than all of America's newspapers, and Google has twice the ad revenues of Facebook.

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Bitcoin Backlash as 'Miners' Suck Up Electricity, Stress Power Grids in Central Washington
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 01:51 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's closer-look department:
An anonymous reader shares a report: Public hearings for rural electric utilities are rarely sellout events. But the crowd that showed up in Wenatchee two weeks ago for a hearing about Bitcoin mining in Chelan County was so large that utility staff had to open a second room with a video feed for the overflow. The turnout wasn't surprising. Chelan County, along with neighboring Douglas and Grant counties, has been at the center of the U.S. Bitcoin boom since 2012, when the region's ultracheap hydropower began attracting cryptocurrency "miners." [...] As a result, an area famous for apples, wheat and conservative politics has been transformed into a kind of cyber-boomtown, with Bitcoin mining operations that range from large-scale, state-of-the-art warehouses to repurposed cargo containers to backyard sheds. By the end of this year, according to some estimates, the Mid-Columbia Basin could account for as much as 30 percent of the global output of new Bitcoin and large shares of other digital currencies, such as Litecoin and Ethereum. But as in any boomtown, success has come at a cost. As the cryptocurrency industry morphs into larger, more energy-intensive operations, the Basin's three public utilities districts (PUDs) are reassessing how they deal with it, and whether they can -- or should even try to -- keep up.

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Oracle's Aggressive Sales Tactics Are Backfiring With Customers
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 12:32 PM
By msmash from Slashdot's aggressive-expansion department:
An anonymous reader shares a report: Oracle's aggressive sales tactics are turning off customers, setting a roadblock in the company's race to catch up with Amazon Web Services in the cloud, according to a report on The Information. [Editor's note: the link may be paywalled; alternative source]. Oracle is threatening customers of its on-premises software with potentially expensive usage audits and strongly suggesting those customers could solve their problems by moving to the cloud, The Information says. But the tactic is backfiring. "Several big Oracle customers, including oil and gas exploration company Halliburton, toy maker Mattel and electricity provider Edison Southern California, have recently rejected big cloud services deals proposed by Oracle, according to an Oracle employee with knowledge of the situation," the publication reported. "Oracle representatives had suggested the customers strike the deals to avoid expensive audits of how they were using Oracle software, according to the employee. Instead, that approach to selling cloud is irritating customers," it added.

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Film Theory: Willy Wonka and the Golden Ticket SCAM! (Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory)
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 12:32 PM
By The Film Theorists from The Film Theory:

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Ubisoft's Finished Unreleased Wii U Game - Game History Secrets
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 12:21 PM
By DidYouKnowGaming? from DidYouKnowGaming?:

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Transformers Platinum Edition Planet Junk Clash & One Shall Stand, One Shall Fall Packaging Art By Ken Christiansen
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 11:31 AM
By Black Convoy from TFW2005:
<img width="600" height="425" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/05/02-One-Shall-Stand-set-packaging-art-by-Ken-Christiansen.jpg" alt="" />

Artist Ken Christiansen keeps sharing more of his packaging artwork he has done for Hasbro. Now he has revealed art from the Platinum Edition Planet Junk Clash and the One Shall Stand, One Shall Fall Set. The images were shared via Ken Christiansen Facebook account. We have the pencils of the Platinum Edition Planet Junk Clash set (which included repaints of Classic Rodimus, Reveal the Shield Wreck-Gar and United Scrapheap). We also see the amazing retro style of the One Shall Stand, One Shall Fall Set (includes redecos of Classics Optimus Prime and Megatron). You can click on the bar to see the mirrored new images on this news » Continue Reading.

The post Transformers Platinum Edition Planet Junk Clash & One Shall Stand, One Shall Fall Packaging Art By Ken Christiansen appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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People Living in the Hottest Places on the Planet Are the Least Likely To Have Air Conditioners
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 11:11 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's closer-look department:
Zoe Schlanger, writing for Quartz: In 2016, roughly 10% of the planet's energy use went towards air conditioning. Figures vary wildly from country to country, though, and some of the hottest regions on Earth use the least A/C -- for now. A new report from the International Energy Agency says that's about to change. By 2050, the intergovernmental agency predicts, global energy use from A/Cs will triple, reaching a level equivalent to China's total electricity demand today. The African continent is home to some of the hottest places on Earth, but fewer than 5% of people in most African nations own an air conditioner, and energy used for cooling comes to just 35 kWh per person living in the continent, according to the IEA. In India, where large parts of the country are hot all year round, people use an average of 70 kWh for cooling. Compared to nations where having an A/C is the norm, that's almost nothing at all.

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Google's Toronto City Built 'From the Internet Up'
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 11:11 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's tomorrow's-cities department:
On Toronto's Eastern waterfront, a new digital city is being built by Sidewalk Labs -- a firm owned by Google's parent Alphabet. It hopes the project will become a model for 21st-Century urbanism. From a report: But the deal has been controversial, representing one of biggest ever tie-ups between a city and a large corporation. And that, coupled with the fact that the corporation in question is one of the largest tech firms in the world, is causing some unease. Sidewalk Labs promises to transform the disused waterfront area into a bustling mini metropolis, one built "from the internet up," although there is no timetable for when the city will actually be built. Dan Doctoroff, the company's head and former deputy mayor of New York, told the BBC the project was "about creating healthier, safer, more convenient and more fun lives. We want this to be a model for what urban life can be in the 21st Century," he said. The area will have plenty of sensors collecting data -- from traffic, noise and air quality -- and monitoring the performance of the electric grid and waste collection.

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Game Theory: Bendy FOOLED Us! Predicting the Chapter 5 REVEAL! (Bendy and the Ink Machine Chapter 4)
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 10:31 AM
By The Game Theorists from The Game Theory:

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Pop Culture Shock Small Scale (10″) G1 Optimus Prime Statue Full Reveal
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 10:10 AM
By Black Convoy from TFW2005:
<img width="487" height="600" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/05/Pop-Culture-Shock-Optimus-Prime-Statue.jpg" alt="" />

Finally, Pop Culture Shock Collectibles have just revealed a full complete image of their upcoming small Scale (10″) G1 Optimus Prime Statue, and we are sure it was worth the wait to see it. The image was shared via the official Pop Culture Shock Instagram account. Back in last November, we broke the news regarding Pop Culture Shock acquiring Hasbro License to manufacture statues based on Transformers Franchise. As we expected, this statue really captures the spirit and style of the cartoon animation, showing Optimus Prime in a running pose with his laser gun. To top it all, the statue was painted » Continue Reading.

The post Pop Culture Shock Small Scale (10″) G1 Optimus Prime Statue Full Reveal appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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Mystery Donor Pledges $1 Million To The GNOME Foundation
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 09:52 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's secret-santa department:
Brian Fagioli, writing for BetaNews: This week, The GNOME Foundation made a shocking revelation: a mystery donor has pledged $1 million dollars. We don't know who is promising the money -- it could be a rich man or woman, but more likely -- and this is pure speculation -- it is probably a company that benefits from GNOME, such as Red Hat or Canonical. "An anonymous donor has pledged to donate up to $1,000,000 over the next two years, some of which will be matching funds. The GNOME Foundation is grateful for this donation and plans on using these funds to increase staff to streamline operations and to grow its support of the GNOME Project and the surrounding ecosystem. While the GNOME Foundation has maintained its position as a proponent of the GNOME Project, growth has been limited. With these funds, the GNOME Foundation will be able to expand and lead in the free software space," says The GNOME Foundation.

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Ask Slashdot: Can a City Really Sue an Oil Company For Climate Change?
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 08:32 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's rabbit-hole department:
An anonymous reader writes: The city of Richmond, California, is suing Chevron, its largest employer and its largest public-safety scourge. But while industrial accidents like refinery fires are commonplace in the low-lying industrial town, that's not what this lawsuit is about. Richmond and six other California cities are suing oil companies for contributing to the changing climate, which threatens to inundate their shorelines. "In an era of federal deregulation and rising seas, these lawsuits feel increasingly urgent," writes deputy editor Adam Rogers. "The question is whether the courts will even see them as plausible." The lawsuits face two big legal hurdles: getting scientific proof that climate change (and specific companies causing climate change) are to blame for the cities' woes, along with overcoming oil companies' contention that cities can't sue them at all, since at the federal level, they're beholden to the Clean Air Act. But the urban plaintiffs have a plan for that. They are not asking for new regulations or bans; they're asking for reparations for a problem they say oil companies willfully hid from them. "Oil and gas, like cigarettes, are products. The companies that sell them are liable for the damages they cause," says Sharon Eubanks, an attorney at Bordas & Bordas who was lead counsel in the Justice Department's RICO case against the Philip Morris tobacco company. "They have misled the public about the product's dangers."

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There Are Real Reasons For Linux To Replace ifconfig, netstat and Other Classic Tools
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 07:10 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's making-a-case department:
Several readers have shared a blog post: One of the ongoing system administration controversies in Linux is that there is an ongoing effort to obsolete the old, cross-Unix standard network administration and diagnosis commands of ifconfig, netstat and the like and replace them with fresh new Linux specific things like ss and the ip suite. Old sysadmins are generally grumpy about this; they consider it yet another sign of Linux's 'not invented here' attitude that sees Linux breaking from well-established Unix norms to go its own way. Although I'm an old sysadmin myself, I don't have this reaction. Instead, I think that it might be both sensible and honest for Linux to go off in this direction. There are two reasons for this, one ostensible and one subtle. The ostensible surface issue is that the current code for netstat, ifconfig, and so on operates in an inefficient way. Per various people, netstat et al operate by reading various files in /proc, and doing this is not the most efficient thing in the world (either on the kernel side or on netstat's side). You won't notice this on a small system, but apparently there are real impacts on large ones. Modern commands like ss and ip use Linux's netlink sockets, which are much more efficient. In theory netstat, ifconfig, and company could be rewritten to use netlink too; in practice this doesn't seem to have happened and there may be political issues involving different groups of developers with different opinions on which way to go. (Netstat and ifconfig are part of net-tools, while ss and ip are part of iproute2.) However, the deeper issue is the interface that netstat, ifconfig, and company present to users. In practice, these commands are caught between two masters. On the one hand, the information the tools present and the questions they let us ask are deeply intertwined with how the kernel itself does networking, and in general the tools are very much supposed to report the kernel's reality. On the other hand, the users expect netstat, ifconfig and so on to have their traditional interface (in terms of output, command line arguments, and so on); any number of scripts and tools fish things out of ifconfig output, for example. As the Linux kernel has changed how it does networking, this has presented things like ifconfig with a deep conflict; their traditional output is no longer necessarily an accurate representation of reality.

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Paytm, India's Largest Digital Wallet App, Accused Of Handing Over User Data To The Government
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 07:10 AM
By msmash from Slashdot's digital-India department:
Paytm, the largest mobile wallet app in India, has been accused of sharing with the Indian government the personal data of users in a geopolitically sensitive region. From a report: On Friday, the news agency released a video where a reporter went undercover and recorded Paytm's vice president, Ajay Shekhar Sharma, saying how the company had handed over personal data of users in the state of Jammu and Kashmir after Sharma personally received a call from the prime minister's office following incidents of stone-pelting by Kashmiri Muslims against India's armed forces, something that happens frequently in the region. "They told us to give them data, saying maybe some of the stone-pelters are Paytm users," Sharma says in the video. He also talks about his close ties to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, a right-wing Hindu nationalist organization known for being the ideological front of India's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.

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In-Package Stock Images Of Transformers: Cyberverse 1-Step Changers
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 03:30 AM
By Silver Optimus from TFW2005:
<img width="513" height="513" src="http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2018/05/Transformers-Cyberverse-1-Step-Changers-Soundwave.jpg" alt="" />

This weekend seems to be all about Transformers: Cyberverse. From Trading Cards to Concept Art to McDonald’s Happy Meal toys, the Evergreen concept designs are in the spotlight. Thanks to 2005 Boards member Nevermore, we are now treated with brand new In-Package stock images of Transformers: Cyberverse 1-Step Changers. With it also comes our first look at the Cyberverse renditions of Autobot Blurr and Decepticon Soundwave, the latter which takes heavy design cues from the aforementioned Evergreen concepts. Nevermore also took time to give us a direct comparison between the packaging of Cyberverse 1-Steps and Robots In » Continue Reading.

The post In-Package Stock Images Of Transformers: Cyberverse 1-Step Changers appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.

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Are Google's Cat-Loving Employees Killing Burrowing Owls?
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 03:10 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's giving-a-hoot department:
An anonymous reader writes: Google's employees started a group called GCat Rescue that traps feral cats and puts them up for adoption. (Though "less-friendly adult cats are neutered and released... The cats that are released are implanted with tracking chips, and an ear is notched so they can be identified.") A public records request discovered that city employees kept catching the Google-chipped cats in a nearby wildlife and recreation area that was home to the very last 50 burrowing owls in Silicon Valley — which California has officially designated a species of "special concern". Someone had apparently even installed a cat-feeding station next to a designated owl-nesting area.
The local Audubon Society has been asking Google to review their cat-feeding stations since 2012, but environmental groups told the Times Google was "consistenty unhelpful" on the cat issue. "They told us it was something their employees were doing and they couldn't interfere," said a board member with a group trying to protect the San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge. "One of the cats was trapped, turned over to the Silicon Valley Animal Control Authority, released to Google, trapped again in the park and released again to Google," the Times reports, adding that "In August, it was found dead in the park."

"Like so many stories these days about Big Tech, this is a tale about how attempts to do good often produce unexpected consequences, and how even smart people (especially, perhaps, smart people) can be reluctant to rethink their convictions." The Times reports that a "final victory is at hand" for the cats, since last year was the first time in 20 years that no owl fledglings were observed in the park -- though "as recently as 2011, there were 10." But the number of cat sightings was 318.

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Judge Backs Parents, Saying Their 30-Year-Old Son Must Move Out
Posted by News Fetcher on May 27 '18 at 12:30 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's failure-to-launch department:
"Attention geeks living in their parents' basements!" writes PolygamousRanchKid , sharing this story from NPR:

The promise of adventure didn't do it. Neither did the lure of independence, or the weight of his 30 years. Instead, it took a judge to pry Michael Rotondo from his parents' home. The couple won an eviction order against their son, after a judge argued with Rotondo for 30 minutes. "I don't see why they can't just, you know, wait a little bit for me to leave the house," Rotondo told Donald Greenwood, a justice on the Onondaga County Supreme Court... Christina and Mark Rotondo resorted to legal action after a series of notes to their son (starting on Feb. 2) failed to get him to move out of their home in Camillus, New York, a town west of Syracuse. Those notes followed discussions that began last October. The notes to Michael Rotondo ranged from orders to leave and encouragement to get a job, to offers of more than $1,000 and help in finding a place... The notes escalated into a formally worded notice for Rotondo to leave that set a 30-day deadline -- which lapsed on March 15... In a legal filing cited by CNYCentral, Rotondo said that in the eight years he has lived at his parents' house, he "has never been expected to contribute to household expenses, or assisted with chores and the maintenance of the premises," and that those conditions are simply part of an informal agreement. When he was in his early 20s, Rotondo briefly lived on his own, but he moved back in with his parents after losing a job... The case is being seen as an extreme example of a growing trend. As NPR reported in 2016, a Pew study found that, "For the first time in more than 130 years, Americans ages 18-34 are more likely to live with their parents than in any other living situation."

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