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posted by Fnord666 on Monday June 25, @11:01AM   Printer-friendly
from the mo-money dept.

With Instagram looming, YouTube is trying to keep its creators happy

YouTube is realizing it needs to treat its creators better, now that rival Instagram is making a play for them with its own video platform, IGTV.

The video service announced on Thursday three new ways for YouTubers to make money on its platform, during a presentation at the online video convention, VidCon, in Anaheim, California.

In the next few months, audiences will be able to support their favorite channels within YouTube by paying $4.99 per month to become a member of that channel's community and get access to exclusive posts, videos, live streams and other perks offered by the creator. The program, called Channel Memberships, will be available to channels with 100,000 subscribers or more that meet certain standards, like being eligible for ads and run by creators over the age of 18. The feature, previously called Sponsorships, launched last fall on YouTube Gaming to compete with rival streaming services Twitch, and will soon be made available on YouTube more broadly.

YouTube is also partnering with custom t-shirt company Teespring to allow creators to customize and sell merchandise directly through their channels, as of this week. Many YouTubers, large and small, already make and sell merchandise on their own for extra cash. Not to mention, hawk it incessantly in their videos.

Your video channel has been demonetized. Sorry about that :/

Previously: Facebook/Instagram vs. Twitch and YouTube

Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Monday June 25, @09:27AM   Printer-friendly
from the enjoy-your-vacation dept.

The Bitcoin Baron, a self-proclaimed vigilante responsible for DDoS attacks on civic networks in Madison, Wisc., San Marcos, Texas, and other sites in 2015, has been collared in Phoenix and sentenced to serve 20 months in prison.

The conviction and sentencing is only for the former attack, in which Randall Charles Tucker, who was 20 at the time, disabled the City of Madison’s website for six days, crippled the 911 emergency communication system and degraded the emergency service dispatch system. He went on to boast about the attacks on social media, according to the court documents, and on Skype chats in his gaming community.

The attack’s motivation is unclear, but it came shortly after a fatal shooting of a 19-year-old unarmed black man by a Madison police officer sparked outrage. Police brutality soon became a recurring theme for Tucker.

[...] The hacker pleaded guilty in April of last year to one count of intentional damage to a protected computer, in Madison.

In addition to the jail time, U.S. District Judge Douglas L. Rayes of the District of Arizona also ordered Tucker to pay $69,331.56 in restitution.

Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Monday June 25, @07:54AM   Printer-friendly
from the they're-not-coming dept.

European Union lawmakers are unhappy that Facebook is refusing to comply with their request to send two senior officials to testify at a hearing into the Cambridge Analytica data scandal.

The EU parliament's Civil Liberties Committee wants to question Facebook's chief privacy officer and the vice presidents for advertisements and global public policy.

The committee said Friday that global public policy vice president Joel Kaplan will attend Monday's hearing, but he will only be accompanied two members of Facebook's public policy team.

Committee Chairman Claude Moraes said "we had expected to hear from other speakers."

Moraes said "it will be up to members to see if Facebook's answers will be sufficient, convincing and trustworthy."

Initially, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg declined to appear before the assembly but finally attended last month.

Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Monday June 25, @05:31AM   Printer-friendly
from the no-space-for-you dept.

NASA astronaut Jeanette Epps was supposed to be in space right now, as the first African-American crew member living on the International Space Station. But instead she's on the ground doing all of the things astronauts do when they're not in space—training, monitoring programs, working as a capcom in Mission Control, and more.

Since being pulled from her flight in January, a mission that launched about two weeks ago for a six-month tour on the space station, Epps has remained quiet in public. NASA did not specify the reasons for her removal from Expedition 56 to the space station, saying only that, "These decisions are personnel matters for which NASA doesn’t provide information."

However, Epps did finally speak publicly this week, appearing at the Tech Open Air technology festival in Berlin on June 21, where she was interviewed by journalist Megan Gannon. The website CollectSPACE provided a transcript of the discussion.

Asked why she was taken off the Expedition 56 flight, Epps said she could not go into great detail. “I can't speculate in this forum why that was done, but it was a decision of my management and it is something that we're going to try to work through,” she said. However, Epps noted that she passed all of her NASA training, her Russian training, as well as exams for operating European and Japanese modules on the space station.

Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Monday June 25, @03:11AM   Printer-friendly
from the I-disagree dept.

Nathan Myhrvold: 'Nasa doesn't want to admit it's wrong about asteroids'

Nathan Myhrvold is the former chief technology officer of Microsoft, founder of the controversial patent asset company Intellectual Ventures and the main author of the six-volume, 2,300-page Modernist Cuisine cookbook, which explores the science of cooking. Currently, he is taking on Nasa over its measurement of asteroid sizes.

For the past couple of years, you've been fighting with Nasa about its analysis of near-Earth asteroid size. You've just published a 33-page scientific paper [open, DOI: 10.1016/j.icarus.2018.05.004] [DX] criticising the methods used by its Neowise project team to estimate the size and other properties of approximately 164,000 asteroids. You have also published a long blog post explaining the problem. Where did Nasa go wrong and is it over or underestimating size?

Nasa's Wise space telescope [Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer] measured the asteroids in four different wavelengths in the infrared. My main beef is with how they analysed that data. What I think happened is they made some poor choices of statistical methods. Then, to cover that up, they didn't publish a lot of the information that would help someone else replicate it. I'm afraid they have both over- and underestimated. The effect changes depending on the size of the asteroid and what it's made of. The studies were advertised as being accurate to plus or minus 10%. In fact, it is more like 30-35%. That's if you look overall. If you look at specific subsets some of them are off by more than 100%. It's kind of a mess.

[...] Nasa's reported response has been to stand by the data and the analysis performed by the Neowise team. Can we trust Nasa after this?

They need to have an independent investigation of these results. When my preprint paper came out in 2016, they said: "You shouldn't believe it because it's not peer-reviewed." Well, now it has been peer reviewed. How Nasa handles it at this stage will be very telling. People have suggested to me the reason Nasa doesn't want to admit that anything is wrong with the data is that they're afraid it would hurt the chances of Neocam, an approximately $500m (£380m) telescope to find asteroids that might hit Earth proposed by the same group who did the Neowise analysis.

Previously: Former Microsoft Chief Technologist Criticizes NASA

Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Monday June 25, @12:49AM   Printer-friendly
from the fblyrag-arjf-ebpxf dept.

RNA modifications can encrypt the RNA code and are responsible for a very sophisticated control of RNA function. A Danish-German research team has shown that modified RNA bases have a great impact on the dynamics of gene expression from DNA to functional RNA. The study yields important new insight into how the basis of RNA modifications can affect the function of mature RNA molecules.The genetic material, DNA, is located in the cell nucleus where gene expression is controlled. DNA is copied into the less stable RNA for translation into protein in the cytoplasm (mRNA or protein-coding RNA) or for mediating independent functions as non-coding RNA. RNA is processed through several maturation steps to ensure its proper expression and localization. One of these maturation steps is called splicing. The non-functional introns are excised from the newly made RNA in the splicing process to build a mature and functional RNA consisting of exons only.

RNA is composed of four bases (abbreviated A, U, G and C), thereby disseminating its message with a fairly simple code. In recent years, research has shown an unprecedented impact of RNA modifications at all steps of the maturation process. More than a hundred RNA modifications have been identified with roles in both inhibiting and facilitating binding to proteins, DNA and other RNA molecules. This encryption by RNA modification is a way to prevent the message of the RNA in being read by the wrong recipients.

Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Sunday June 24, @10:27PM   Printer-friendly
from the solo-failure dept.

Lucasfilm "Licking Their Wounds" But Not Halting 'Star Wars' Development

Mild spoilers in TFA about certain characters that appear in the film.

Disney and Lucasfilm are reassessing their plans for future Star Wars movies in the wake of the disappointing performance of Solo: A Star Wars Story, which is having to fight to make much more than $350 million worldwide, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter. "They haven't slowed down development," says a source with knowledge of Lucasfilm's thinking, "but they are licking their wounds."

Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy and her team are regrouping and figuring out the direction of the movies beyond the final installment of the main series of films, Star Wars: Episode IX, which is scheduled for release Dec. 20, 2019. "It doesn't mean those spinoffs don't happen," says another insider of Solo's underperformance globally. "It just means they're trying to figure out how to make, and market, them differently."

[...] "They were developing anything and everything," says another exec. "It was a case of them stuffing so much sausage and not try to break the casing."

Meanwhile, Han Solo's blaster was sold for over 0.1% of the film's gross.

Also at Collider,, and Forbes (archive).

Related: Star Wars Franchise Loses Fourth Director in Two Years
Meet the New Star Wars IX Director: J. J. Abrams

Original Submission

posted by martyb on Sunday June 24, @08:05PM   Printer-friendly
from the show-me-the-numbers dept.

The Ubuntu blog has a report on installation metrics:

We first announced our intention to ask users to provide basic, not-personally-identifiable system data back in February.  Since then we have built the Ubuntu Report tool and integrated it in to the Ubuntu 18.04 LTS initial setup tool.  You can see an example of the data being collected on the Ubuntu Report Github page.

At first login users are asked if they would like to send the information gathered and can preview that data if they wish.

One thing to point out is that this data is entirely from Ubuntu Desktop installs only and does not include users of Ubuntu Server, Ubuntu Core, our cloud images, or any of the Ubuntu derivatives that do not include the ubuntu-report software in their installer.

For example, the average install took 18 minutes, but some systems were able to install in less than 8 minutes. Available RAM was most frequently reported at 4GB followed closely by 8GB, but there were systems reporting in with as little as 1GB and as much as 128GB.

How do your system(s) compare?

Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Sunday June 24, @05:52PM   Printer-friendly
from the fetch-the-popcorn dept.

From Raw Story

The National Park Service has approved an application for a year anniversary commemoration of Charlottesville's violent white supremacist rally to be held in Washington, DC.

DC's WUSA9 reported that NPS approved the application but has not yet issued permits for the rally set to be held at Lafayette Square, a seven-acre park just north of the White House. The event is to be organized by Jason Kessler, the organizer of the "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville where 32-year-old Heather Heyer was hit and killed by an alleged white supremacist.

"This year we have a new purpose," Kessler said, discussing the upcoming rally. "That's to talk about the civil rights abuse that happened in Charlottesville, Virginia last year."

Kessler claimed it wasn't his fault that "that stuff happened," and said that in the months since the rally ostensibly intended to "defend" a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee, "white civil rights" have taken a hit.

"We're not able to peacefully assemble. We're not able to speak," he told WUSA. "I keep telling people if your right to rally and your right to protest means that someone else's life might be in danger, then it is no longer free speech but it is hate speech."

Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Sunday June 24, @03:53PM   Printer-friendly
from the more-whoosh dept.

'Snapdragon 1000' chip may be designed for PCs from the ground up

Qualcomm's Snapdragon 850 processor may be intended for PCs, but it's still a half step -- it's really a higher-clocked version of the same processor you'd find in your phone. The company may be more adventurous the next time, though. WinFuture says it has obtained details surrounding SDM1000 (possibly Snapdragon 1000), a previously hinted-at CPU that would be designed from the start for PCs. It would have a relatively huge design compared to most ARM designs (20mm x 15mm) and would consume a laptop-like 12W of power across the entire system-on-a-chip. It would compete directly with Intel's low-power Core processors where the existing 835 isn't really in the ballpark.

By comparison, the Snapdragon 850 has a maximum TDP of just 6.5 Watts.

A reference design for the chip includes 16 GB of LPDDR4X memory, 2 × 128 GB of UFS 2.1 internal storage, and Gigabit WLAN.

See also: Snapdragon-based Chromebook could rival always-connected PCs

Related: Windows 10 PCs Running on Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 to Arrive this Year
First ARM Snapdragon-Based Windows 10 S Systems Announced
Snapdragon 845 Announced
Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 850 processor will arrive in Windows PCs this year

Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Sunday June 24, @01:52PM   Printer-friendly
from the that's-what-I-look-like! dept.

Nintendo only lets users choose from a limited number of preset profile pictures (or custom-made Miis) for their online avatar on the Switch network. So at least one Reddit user was quite surprised to see pornographic profile pictures showing up on the user-placed balloons in Super Mario Odyssey's online "Balloon World" mode.

"The picture was changed several times over the course of my time patrolling, each picture being pornographic content," Redditor ewaison writes, including links to (censored) screenshots of the offending profile pictures in their post. "There are multiple [sic] of these balloons all being made by the same user. This is obviously intentional, and made to upset children."

With the menu installed, users can load an arbitrary 256 x 256 resolution JPG onto their SD card and use a "Change Avatar" menu option to upload that file as their profile picture. Nintendo apparently stores (and then distributes) whatever gets uploaded directly on its servers rather than using some sort of internal ID tag to denote which preset profile picture should be used.

Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Sunday June 24, @11:37AM   Printer-friendly
from the got-to-start-somewhere dept.

The GDPR is now in effect. This is an attempt (mostly good) to give people control over their personal data. Specifically, companies must ask you to opt-in to data collection, and you have the right to opt-out at any time.

Of course, too many companies are trying to abuse the situation. For example, I received several notices with an "accept" option that would opt-in to more ads, newsletters or data collection than I had before. I was particularly annoyed by the new Sonos privacy policy. It states that not opting-in to their full data collection means that your Sonos products will no longer work. Which, of course, makes no sense at all - there's no reason why a loudspeaker needs to send my music listening habits to the mothership.

This is an example of a practice called "forced consent", and is explicitly forbidden by the GDPR. Max Schrems, an Austrian attorney and privacy expert, has gone to war on exactly this kind of abuse. Just minutes after the GDPR came into effect, he filed separate complaints against Google, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp - all of which have similar forced-consent policies: opt-in or you cannot use their products.

Schrem's efforts are funded through (none of your business), which is a crowdfunded platform and organization that works for privacy rights online.

Original Submission

posted by martyb on Sunday June 24, @09:43AM   Printer-friendly
from the skirting-existing-laws dept.

The Center for American Progress reports

Before Stephen Paddock opened fire at a country music festival on the Las Vegas Strip last October, killing 58 and wounding hundreds, most Americans probably hadn't heard of bump-fire stocks--add-ons that lets a semiautomatic rifle fire as quickly as a machine gun. Until that mass shooting, they were a novelty known only among firing-range enthusiasts and Cool Gun YouTube.

Within months of Las Vegas, lawmakers introduced bipartisan legislation[1] to outlaw the devices, and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, or ATF, announced plans to ban them through regulation.[2]

But gun control advocates warn bump stocks are just one part of a much bigger problem. A flood of new gun technologies is pushing the envelope on what a civilian can legally own, skirting laws that have kept the most dangerous weapons off the street for decades.

[...] Weapons like machine guns, silencers, and short-barreled rifles and shotguns are regulated under the National Firearms Act of 1934 and subsequent amendments. To own one of those weapons, a civilian has to go through a lengthy approval process and pay a special tax. The job of deciding whether a gun falls under NFA's restrictions falls to ATF.

Gun manufacturers have used the law's technicalities to create guns that are just as powerful, and deadly, as restricted weapons but without the added tax and strict regulations.

Take the SAINT, by Springfield Armory. It's an AR-15 with a 30-round magazine and a 7.5-inch barrel. That's shorter than the legal rifle length under federal law. But instead of a shoulder stock, the SAINT has a "stabilizing brace" or "forearm brace"--a device designed to attach to a shooter's forearm for one-handed firing rather than resting against their shoulder. By ATF's definition, the SAINT is a pistol, not a rifle, because it isn't meant to be fired from the shoulder. So anyone who can pass a federal background check can buy one online for $989.

[...] Stabilizing braces aren't the only new gun tech to skirt around the National Firearms Act. Franklin Armory's Binary Trigger System fires two rounds with every shot--one when the trigger is depressed and one when it's released, doubling the rate of fire. Like bump stocks and stabilizing braces, binary triggers aren't currently regulated under the National Firearms Act.

In one YouTube video, a man uses a binary trigger to fire a 30-round magazine in less than five seconds. In another, a binary trigger beats out a fully-automatic weapon.

[1] Bogus link in TFA. Fixed in TFS.
[2] Content is behind scripts.

Original Submission

posted by martyb on Sunday June 24, @07:30AM   Printer-friendly
from the Layers:-A-bunch-of-hens dept.

Micron Non-Volatile Update (Q2'18): 96L 3D NAND in H2, 4th Gen 3D NAND Enroute, Sales of 3D XPoint Disappoint

At present Micron is ramping up production of its 64-layer 3D TLC NAND memory (2nd Gen 3D NAND) and last quarter it achieved production output crossover with other types of NAND the company manufactures. This is particularly good news for Micron because 64-layer 3D NAND devices are significantly more cost-efficient in terms of cost per bit compared to 32-layer 3D NAND memory, which allows Micron to earn more. In fact, 64-layer 3D NAND enabled Micron to launch two major products. First, the company released its 2.5-inch SATA 5200 ECO SSDs with up to 7.68 TB capacity in January targeting mainstream servers. Second, 64-layer 3D QLC memory enabled Micron to compete for nearline storage segment with its 5210 ION drives launched back in May.

Earlier this month we reported that at least two developers of SSD controllers have qualified Micron's 96-layer 3D TLC NAND memory for SSDs. During the conference call, Micron confirmed that it was on track to ship its 3rd Gen 3D NAND in volumes for commercial products in the second half of calendar 2018. It is not clear whether the initial batches of such memory will be used for various removable storage solutions (memory cards, USB flash drives, etc.) as it happens usually, but it is evident that Micron's 96-layer 3D NAND is making a good progress with designers of SSD controllers. Maxio Technology intends to use Micron's 3D TLC B27A memory for inexpensive drives based on its MAS0902A-B2C DRAM-less controller, whereas Silicon Motion is so confident of this memory that it has qualified it with its top-of-the-range SM2262EN controller for high-performance SSDs.

[...] While sales of Micron's SSDs are growing (and currently account for 50% of Micron's storage business revenue, or $507 million) and the company continues to shift to high-value specialized NAND products from selling raw NAND chips, shipments of 3D XPoint are below expectations. According to Micron, it sold "very little" 3D XPoint memory to its unnamed parter (almost certainly Intel) during its Q3 FY2018.

Micron's 4th-generation 3D NAND could have up to 128 layers.

Related: "String-Stacking" Being Developed to Enable 3D NAND With More Than 100 Layers
64-Layer 3D NAND at Computex
SK Hynix Developing 96 and 128-Layer TLC 3D NAND
Intel and Micron Boost 3D XPoint Production
Micron Launches First QLC NAND SSD

Original Submission

posted by mrpg on Sunday June 24, @05:17AM   Printer-friendly
from the dont-mine-in-azure dept.

[...] Microsoft has now revealed that source of its troubles: mildly warm weather. That day in Dublin, where Microsoft's North Europe data center resides, the high temperature reached a pleasant 18°C or about 64°F in Freedom Units.

[...] Microsoft's Azure status history explains, "On 19 Jun 2018, Data Center Critical Environments systems in one of our data centers in the North Europe region experienced an increase in outside air temperature."

[...] Azure customers who rely on the North Europe region may want to make sure they have outage plans in place. By next Friday, the weather forecast in Dublin anticipates temperatures as high as 24°C or 75°F.

According to a 2016 study by Emerson Network Power and the Ponemon Institute, about 12 per cent of data center outages can be attributed to weather, with the remainder being human and mechanical error.

It was an 11 hours disruption.

Original Submission