@Z - Index
Nissan's Next Electric Car Could Also Provide Power To Your Home
October 19 '19 at 10:02 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's turning-over-a-new-Leaf department:
From a report:

The owner of an electric car will be able to meet household power needs from the vehicle itself based on a technology developed by Nissan, the Japanese auto giant.

It plans to introduce the new 'Leaf' electric cars in the Indian market next year and is on the look-out for local partners for collaboration on the application of its latest 'Vehicle-to-Home' technology (V2H) in the state. The technology allows electric vehicles to not only receive power but also store it and send it back to the source. The 'Leaf' could be an alternative to a home battery system like inverter.

Household power can be supplied from the 'Leaf' lithium-ion battery (40 kWh) of the car by installing a power control system connected to the household's distribution board. The vehicles can also be charged from the household power supply at night (lean usage period).
Ages Three and Up Product & Pre-Order Newsletter 234
October 19 '19 at 08:01 PM
By AzT from TFW2005:
TFW2005 friend and sponsor Ages Three and Up delivers their latest product updates newsletter. Check out the details below! Hot New Pre-Orders TRANSFORMERS GENERATIONS – GHOSTBUSTERS ECTO-1 ECTOTRON X-TRANSBOTS – MX-15 G2 DEATHWISH X-TRANSBOTS – MONOLITH COMBINER MX-16T OVERHEAT YOUTH VERSION TRANSFORMERS WAR FOR CYBERTRON – EARTHRISE – DELUXE WAVE 1 – SET OF 4 TRANSFORMERS GENERATIONS SIEGE – NEMESIS PRIME (TAKARA TOMY MALL EXCLUSIVE)   In Stock and Ready to Ship! <a href="https://www.agesthreeandup.com/iron-factory-ifex14n-nightmare-commander" » Continue Reading.

The post Ages Three and Up Product & Pre-Order Newsletter 234 appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.
Is Andrew Yang Wrong About Robots Taking Our Jobs?
October 19 '19 at 07:32 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's robot-apocalypses department:
U.S. presidential candidate Andrew Yang "is full of it," argues Slate's senior business and economics correspondent, challenging Yang's contention (in a debate Tuesday) that American jobs were being lost to automation:

Following the debate, a "fact check" by the AP claimed that Yang was right and Warren wrong. "Economists mostly blame [manufacturing] job losses on automation and robots, not trade deals," it stated. But this was incorrect. No such consensus exists, and if anything, the evidence heavily suggests that trade has been the bigger culprit in recent decades. All of which points to a broader issue: Yang's schtick about techno doom may be well-intentioned, but it is largely premised on BS, and is adding to the widespread confusion about the impact of automation on the economy.

< article continued at Slashdot's robot-apocalypses department >
'How Andrew Yang Would Fix The Internet'
October 19 '19 at 07:32 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's big-campaign-promises department:
For the "Privacy Project" newsletter of the New York Times, opinion writer Charlie Warzel interviewed U.S. presidential candidate Andrew Yang. Their far-ranging conversation covered everything from whether Facebook should be able to run political ads to his proposed Department of the Attention Economy:

Andrew Yang: I was talking to a researcher recently and she described a concept called data dignity, which I thought really says it all. Right now we're being systematically deprived of our dignity and we think it is fine because we're getting these incredible services. Perhaps that worked in the early stages of the internet. But now we're waking up to the fact that the trade is much more serious and profound than we originally realized... I think we should be getting paid in a data dividend. Every time we post a photo or interact with a social media company we're putting information out there and that information should still be ours...

We've become like rats in a maze where we're constantly hit by messages from these companies know everything about us. They know more about us than our families do. We're responding to stimuli and we think we're making choices. But it's because we've shared so much over time that they have a keen sense of what we want. There's something fundamental at stake here, which is: What does human agency look like? What are our rights as citizens?

Yang also points out that when it comes to making things better, "it's not like individual consumers can band together to make this happen. Government needs to be a counterweight to the massive power and information inequities between us and the technology companies."

Yang also says people would be less desperate to sell their data if they were receiving his proposed Universal Basic Income -- but "if individuals want to share their data or information or even their private lives with other people, then that's their prerogative."
TFcon DC 2019 exclusive Ocular Max PS-01R Sphinx Regenesis
October 19 '19 at 05:31 PM
By Super_Megatron from TFW2005:
<img width="452" height="600" src="https://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2019/10/Ocular-Max-PS-01R-Sphinx-Regenesis.jpg" alt="" />

TFcon sponsor Ages Three and Up is proud to announce this year’s first TFcon DC 2019 exclusive Ocular Max PS-01R Sphinx Regenesis. The Ocular Max Regenesis Series are characters REBORN with vibrant colors and nostalgia of an era where neon, fluorescence, and pastels ruled style. Inspired by a second generation of toys, this figure is based on never released concepts.  Designed by Bo2country and produced in cooperation with Toy Dojo and Ocular Max, this figure will come packaged in a beautiful nostalgic clamshell and be available in limited quantities! Get your copy at the Ages Three and Up booth at TFcon » Continue Reading.

The post TFcon DC 2019 exclusive Ocular Max PS-01R Sphinx Regenesis appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.
Is America's Federal Banking System Considering Its Own Digital Cryptocurrency?
October 19 '19 at 05:02 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's almighty-blockchain department:
America's lawmakers and Federal Reserve officials "are so concerned about Facebook's plans to launch a new digital currency," reports Politico's financial services reporter, "that they're contemplating a novel response -- having the central bank create a competitor."
Momentum is building for an idea that was once considered outlandish -- a U.S. government-run virtual currency that would replace physical cash, a dramatic move that could discourage major companies like Facebook from creating their own digital coins. Facebook's proposed currency, Libra, has forced the Fed to consider the issue because of a fear that private companies could establish their own currencies and take control over the global payments system. Some Fed officials share the concern about a new balkanized currency system outside government control that Facebook has threatened to unleash. "Libra bust this way out into the open," said Karen Petrou, a managing partner at Federal Financial Analytics who advises executives on coming policy shifts.

But it's not just Facebook. The matter is also taking on urgency as other countries consider creating their own digital currencies -- another potential challenge to the primacy of the U.S. dollar. The head of the Bank of England has floated the idea that central banks could create a network of digital currencies to replace the dollar as the world's reserve currency... The Bank for International Settlements, which represents the world's central banks, said early this year that most were conducting research into central bank digital currencies and many were progressing from conceptual work into experimentation and proofs-of-concept...

< article continued at Slashdot's almighty-blockchain department >
'South Park' Nears $500-Million Deal for US Streaming Rights
October 19 '19 at 05:02 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's friendly-faces-everywhere department:
An anonymous reader quotes the Los Angeles Times:

"South Park" is the latest beneficiary of Hollywood's rerun mania. The show's creators and media giant Viacom Inc. expect to share between $450 million and $500 million by selling the streaming rights to the animated comedy, one of the longest-running TV series in U.S. history, according to people familiar with the matter. As many as a half-dozen companies are bidding for exclusive U.S. streaming rights to past episodes of the show, which has been available on Walt Disney Co.'s Hulu in recent years. Viacom and the show's creators hope to secure a new deal by the end of 2019 and could decide on the winning bidder as soon as this weekend, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the negotiations are private.

The value of popular TV reruns has skyrocketed, fueled by new streaming platforms seeking programming that can attract subscribers and provide an edge over rivals. Viacom and "South Park" creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone expect the multiyear deal to net more than double what Hulu paid in 2015.... One company that probably won't be bidding is Apple Inc., the people said. The tech giant has eschewed controversial programming that could damage its brand, and it's wary of offending China, where it sells a lot of iPhones. "South Park" was just banned in China after an episode mocked the country's censorship of Western movies and TV.
Australia's Buggy Automated System Suspended 1 Million Welfare Payments This Year
October 19 '19 at 02:32 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's disbelief-of-suspension department:
An anonymous reader quotes the Guardian's report on last year's update to Australia's automated system for welfare benefits:

Welfare advocates say the consequences have been disastrous... In 12 months, welfare payments were stopped an extra 1 million times... [A] recipient's money is cut off automatically until they satisfy their job agency consultant that they are committed to looking for work... Consultants have less discretion when a welfare recipient does not turn up to an appointment or misses another compulsory activity. They enter a code into a system that automatically triggers a payment suspension. The same goes when the welfare recipient fails to report their income or confirm they met their job search requirements via digital channels. Money is stopped first, and questions are asked later. The idea is that this will encourage people to follow the rules.

"In some cases it's left single parents without money for food for their children over a weekend because they haven't logged in and reported their attendance," says Adrianne Walters, a senior lawyer at the Human Rights Law Centre. "And so the computer says, 'No payments'. And then that person is left without anywhere to turn until their employment service provider opens up again on the Monday...."

Since the new policies were introduced, about 50,000 suspension notifications now go out to welfare recipients across the country each week... analysis of government statistics by the Guardian shows about 75% of the time, benefits recipients who had their payments suspended under the new system were not at fault... Meanwhile, across a controversial welfare-to-work program for single parents with children under five, 85% had their payments suspended automatically but were later cleared of wrongdoing. The overwhelming majority were single mothers.
Why The 'Not-Com' Stock Bubble Is Popping
October 19 '19 at 02:32 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's dotcoms-vs-not-coms department:
"In the dot-com bubble, public investors got hosed," remembers The Atlantic. "Today, it's public investors that are doing the hosing."

When the web browser Netscape went public on August 9, 1995 -- the day many cite as the beginning of the dot-com bubble -- its stock skyrocketed from $28 to $75 in a matter of hours, even though the company wasn't profitable. In today's market, the opposite is happening: Unicorns with no positive earnings are getting slaughtered at the gates. WeWork's valuation fell more than 80 percent pre-IPO when investors balked at its mounting losses. Peloton, Lyft, and Uber have also struggled to persuade public markets to grade them on a curve; all saw their stock prices fall on the day of the public offering. Institutions and retail investors are refusing to fork over to unicorns the valuations that private investors were expecting -- particularly Softbank, a major backer of Uber, Lyft, and WeWork.
This isn't a picture of mass mania. It's a picture of public sobriety, where the masses are diagnosing an acute fever in private markets.

Second, there is little sign of a crisis for firms whose main product is pure software. Judging from the news, you might think this has been a terrible year for technology companies. But tech IPOs have been strong for the past two years, "as long as what you're buying is actually a real tech company," JP Morgan's chair of market and investment strategy, Michael Cembalest, wrote in an October 7 research note. By "real tech," Cembalest was referring to companies whose principal product is software, rather than, say, WeWork, which is in truth a real-estate company caught wearing an Actual Tech Company costume before Halloween.

The article makes it case by citing three "real tech" companies which grab fewer headlines because they sell cloud services or business-to-business software. "But all of them are trading more than 100 percent above their listed IPO price."
Huawei Says US Firms Have Expressed Interest In Licensing Its 5G Technology
October 19 '19 at 02:32 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's baby-steps department:
An anonymous reader quotes Reuters:

Blacklisted Chinese telecoms equipment giant Huawei is in early-stage talks with some U.S. telecoms companies about licensing its 5G network technology to them, a Huawei executive told Reuters on Friday. Vincent Pang, senior vice president and board director at the company said some firms had expressed interest in both a long-term deal or a one-off transfer, declining to name or quantify the companies.

"There are some companies talking to us, but it would take a long journey to really finalize everything," Pang explained on a visit to Washington this week. "They have shown interest," he added, saying conversations are only a couple of weeks old and not at a detailed level yet.
Forbes Raves Upcoming Linux Desktop Will 'Embarass' Windows 10 and macOS
October 19 '19 at 12:02 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's OS-wars department:
Forbes senior contributor Jason Evangelho dedicated a whole article to a coming update for one Chinese-domestic Linux distribution:

If you haven't been paying attention to a little Linux desktop distribution called Deepin, it's time to put it on your radar. Nevermind that Huawei chose Deepin to ship on their MateBook laptop lineup. Nevermind that Deepin Cloud Sync [for system settings] is a killer, forward-thinking feature that every Linux distro needs to adopt. Nevermind that its slide-out control center resembles something sexy and sensible straight out of the future. But looking toward 2020, Deepin is poised to be absolutely stunning.

This is without question the most beautiful desktop environment I've ever laid eyes on... For me, the UX is more intuitive and more enjoyable than macOS and Windows 10. And fortunately, a quick setting can also transform Deepin to resemble the traditional Windows or macOS desktop paradigms you're already comfortable with. Hell, even the installer is a breath of fresh air.

But let's take a peek at what's coming next. This week, the Deepin Linux Youtube channel quietly released a preview of its Deepin v20 Launcher (just one component of the forthcoming OS), and it's bound to turn some heads. Take a look [YouTube video]. It's merely a tease ahead of this November's expected Deepin v20 beta release, but the Deepin developers have apparently devoted most of 2019 working on the upcoming version. From the category-driven app browser and animations, to the basic desktop layout we see in the teaser video, things appear quite polished already.

The article points out that Deepin is also a stand-alone desktop environment for any current Linux distribution -- and that it's one of the 248 operating systems available for online testing at DistroTest.net.
Google Criticized After Voice From 'Nest' Camera Threatens to Steal Baby
October 19 '19 at 12:02 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's stranger-danger department:
Jack Newcombe, the Chief Operating Officer of a syndication company with 44 million daily readers, describes the strange voice he heard talking to his 18-month old son:

She says we have a nice house and encourages the nanny to respond. She does not. The voice even jokes that she hopes we don't change our password. I am sick to my stomach. After about five minutes of verbal "joy riding," the voice starts to get agitated at the nanny's lack of response and then snaps, in a very threatening voice: "I'm coming for the baby if you don't answer me...." We unplug the cameras and change all passwords...

Still helpless, I started doing the only thing I could do -- Googling. I typed "Nest + camera + hacked" and found out that this happens frequently. Parent after parent relayed stories similar to mine -- threatening to steal a baby is shockingly common -- and some much worse, such as playing pornography over the microphone to a 3-year-old... What is worse is that anyone could have been watching us at any time for as long as we have had the cameras up. This person just happened to use the microphone. Countless voyeurs could have been silently watching (or worse) for months.

< article continued at Slashdot's stranger-danger department >
Russian Cyber-Espionage Group Controlled Its Malware Partly Through Reddit Posts
October 19 '19 at 12:02 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's throwaway-accounts department:
"Cyber-espionage operations from Cozy Bear, a threat actor believed to work for the Russian government, continued undetected for the past years by using malware families previously unknown to security researchers," reports BleepingComputer -- citing a surprisingly detailed report:

Relying on stealthy communication techniques between infected systems and the command and control servers, the group managed to keep their activity under the radar for a long time. Cyber-espionage campaigns that likely started in 2013, collectively named "Operation Ghost," have been attributed to this group, and continued through 2019...

Researchers at ESET tracking this threat actor found at least three victims of Operation Ghost, all being European Ministries of Foreign Affairs including the Washington DC embassy of a European Union country. The victim count is likely larger but identifying them is difficult because the threat actor uses unique command and control infrastructure for each target.

The report notes the group used sites like Reddit, Twitter, and Imgur to deliver the URLs for some command-and-control servers, along with information hidden in images.
And another stage of its malware platform used an even more robust site for its command-and-control server: Dropbox.
Game Theory: Minecraft, STOP Punching Trees!
October 19 '19 at 11:10 AM
By The Game Theorists from The Game Theory:
Film Theory: How To WIN The Purge
October 19 '19 at 11:00 AM
By The Film Theorists from The Film Theory:
Hasbro’s Soundtracks Saturdays – Tranformers Prime Theme
October 19 '19 at 10:01 AM
By Black Convoy from TFW2005:
<img width="569" height="569" src="https://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2019/10/Transformers-Prime.jpg" alt="" />

The official Transformers YouTube account has uploaded a new Hasbro’s Soundtracks Saturdays nusic clip this time with the Tranformers Prime Theme. The video features several clips from the Transformers Prime cartoon mixed with the epic Transformers Prime intro by Brian Tyler. Share your impressions on the 2005 Boards where you will also find the previous entries to this official music videos: “Roll Out’ Sing Along Video By Mount Holly, ‘Gigantik’ Sing Along Video By Crash Kings and ‘Into The Fire’ Sing Along Video By Elle Rae from the Transformers Roll Out album released while back in 2016.

The post Hasbro’s Soundtracks Saturdays – Tranformers Prime Theme appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.
Transformers Galaxies Issue #2 ITunes Preview
October 19 '19 at 10:01 AM
By Black Convoy from TFW2005:
<img width="390" height="600" src="https://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2019/10/Transformers-Galaxies-02-ITunes-Preview-00.jpg" alt="" />

Via ITunes we can share for you the first preview of the upcoming IDW Transformers Galaxies Issue #2. The Transformers Galaxies series is an spin-off of the new main Transformers ongoing series 2019 featuring -favorite secondary characters and their background story and the first story brings us fan-favorite Contructicons and Devastator of course. On this 3-page preview we see that it’s hard to work as a team, even for the Constructicons. This issue is expected for release on October 30, 2019. Read on to see the mirrored pages as well as the great cover A featuring Bombshell by Livio Ramondelli. After that, » Continue Reading.

The post Transformers Galaxies Issue #2 ITunes Preview appeared first on Transformer World 2005 - TFW2005.COM.
Blizzard Suspended Three College 'Hearthstone' Players For Pro-Hong Kong Protests
October 19 '19 at 09:32 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's Blizzard-of-criticism department:
An anonymous reader quotes the Verge:

Blizzard has suspended three college Hearthstone players for six months after they held up a sign that read "Free Hong Kong, Boycott Blizz" while participating in an official competition stream. The ban, which was first reported by VICE Games, comes just over a week after Blizzard suspended a professional Hearthstone player, Ng "Blitzchung" Wai Chung for six months...

Similar to Blitzchung's ban, the three college players didn't receive word about their ban until a couple of days after they held up the sign... Team player Casey Chambers tweeted out an email from a member of the Hearthstone team at Blizzard, which stated that the entire team received the ban for violating the company's official rules.

eSports consultant Rod Breslau posted on Twitter that now Blizzard is also not allowing post-game interviews for Collegiate Hearthstone teams. He adds, "I'm impressed with just how many bad decisions Blizzard has made through all of this..."
Blizzard Criticized By Bipartisan Group of US Lawmakers (Including Ron Wyden, Marco Rubio, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez)
October 19 '19 at 09:32 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's everyone's-angry department:
"If Blizzard wanted to keep politics out of its eSports scene, the Hearthstone publisher has failed miserably in just about every regard," reports Forbes.
After suspending a player for his pro-Hong Kong protest, Blizzard faced a backlash which Forbes describes as "swift," "fierce," and "almost universal. From across the political spectrum, from socialist left to alt-right, gamers were incensed."

Earlier today, Ron Wyden (D, Oregon) and Marco Rubio (R, Florida) signed a bipartisan letter addressed to Activision CEO Bobby Kotick, urging the company to reverse its decision to ban Blitzchung. The letter was co-signed by Co-signed by Congress members Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D, NY), Mike Gallagher (R, WI) and Tom Malinowski (D, NJ)...

The Blizzard backlash could have been avoided entirely if Blizzard had placed principles over profits, according to Fight For The Future Deputy Director, Evan Greer, who said in statement: "Decisions about how to moderate online content are some of the most important decisions that humans are making right now. Full stop... I've seen a lot of Internet outrage in my time. This feels different. People are setting aside their differences and working together to organize protests at BlizzCon, reach out to gaming companies and demand that they take a stand for free expression, and put pressure on companies generally to not cave to authoritarian demands. It's a good reminder that the Internet still knows how to fight for freedom."

It's great to see Congress and other community leaders outside the gaming community weigh in on this matter, though whether any of it will have any impact on Blizzard's decision remains to be seen. The real question is whether boycotts will hold enough sway over the company to alter its course. After all, there's plenty of money to be made in China.

< article continued at Slashdot's everyone's-angry department >
Would You Trust Amazon To Run Free and Fair Elections?
October 19 '19 at 09:32 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's cloudy-future department:
More than 40 of America's 50 states now use Amazon's technology infrastructure for their elections, according to this Reuters article shared by joeblog. And so do both of America's political parties:

While it does not handle voting on election day, AWS -- along with a broad network of partners -- now runs state and county election websites, stores voter registration rolls and ballot data, facilitates overseas voting by military personnel and helps provide live election-night results, according to company documents and interviews... Amazon pitches itself as a low-cost provider of secure election technology at a time when local officials and political campaigns are under intense pressure to prevent a repeat of 2016 presidential elections, which saw cyber-attacks on voting systems and election infrastructure....

Most security experts Reuters spoke to said that while Amazon's cloud is likely much harder to hack than systems it is replacing, putting data from many jurisdictions on a single system raises the prospect that a single major breach could prove damaging. "It makes Amazon a bigger target" for hackers, "and also increases the challenge of dealing with an insider attack," said Chris Vickery, director of cyber risk research at cybersecurity startup Upguard. A recent hack into Capital One Financial Corp's data stored on Amazon's cloud service was perpetrated by a former Amazon employee. The breach affected more than 100 million customers, underscoring how rogue employees or untrained workers can create security risks even if the underlying systems are secure...

< article continued at Slashdot's cloudy-future department >
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