Feed aggregator

  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PDT/-7.0/DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.

Do Homeopathic Cures Work?

Discovery News Headlines - Fri, 11/27/2020 - 11:33am
Alternative medicine has proven tricky to study, and sometimes dangerous to patients. Doctors are divided as to whether or not it has any merit at all.

Nikola stock plunges 26% after fraud claims complicate hydrogen plans

ArsTechnica - 2 hours 12 min ago
Hand holding hydrogen pump.

Enlarge / A Nel/Nikola refueling pump is shown in a 2019 publicity photo. (credit: Nikola Motor Company)

Shares of hydrogen truck startup Nikola plunged 26 percent on Wednesday after The Wall Street Journal reported that the company was struggling to find partners to build a planned network of hydrogen fueling stations. Nikola's stock closed at $21.15 on Wednesday, a decline of 57 percent from the $50 peak reached on September 8, the day Nikola announced that GM would design and manufacture its Badger pickup truck.

Shortly after the GM deal was announced, the short-selling firm Hindenburg Research revealed that Nikola founder Trevor Milton wasn't telling the truth at a 2016 event when he claimed that the Nikola One truck on the stage "fully functions." Nikola now concedes that the truck never worked and that a promotional video of the truck was made by rolling it down a hill.

Nikola argued that this was old news because Nikola is no longer marketing the Nikola One and has a working prototype of the Nikola Two. But the revelations threw the company into chaos and forced Milton to resign on Sunday.

Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Western Digital releases new, larger Red Pro and Purple drives

ArsTechnica - 3 hours 2 min ago
Two hard drives have been badly photoshopped onto a desk in a high-rise office.

Enlarge (credit: Seagate)

Earlier this month, Seagate announced an 18TB entry in its Ironwolf Pro lineup. Western Digital answered Wednesday morning with 18TB versions of its Red Pro and Purple consumer-targeted lines. The new 18TB Red Pro and Purple drives follow the company's first 18TB CMR drive, a Gold released in mid-July.

Both NAS (Network Attached Storage) drives—Seagate's Ironwolf Pro and Western Digital's Red Pro—are CMR drives and not the more performance-problematic SMR technology. Western Digital's announcement of the 18TB Purple did not mention either SMR or CMR at all, which we must assume means it is an SMR drive.

Seagate's 18TB Ironwolf Pro is available for ordering at select retailers now for $580 retail, but actual stock isn't expected until mid-October. Western 18TB Gold drives are available now for $593; the 18TB Red Pro and Purple drives are expected sometime in October, but no prices have been announced yet.

Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Two demon-hunting siblings reunite to save the world in Helstrom trailer

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 5:39pm

Tom Austen and Sydney Lemmon star as siblings Daimon and Ana Helstrom in Helstrom, a 10-episode horror series that hits Hulu next month.

An ethics professor and secret demon hunter reunites with his estranged sister to take on a powerful demonic entity in the trailer for Helstrom, an upcoming horror series based on Marvel Comics characters. The 10-episode series debuts on Hulu next month.

Helstrom has a complicated back story. As we reported in 2019, Hulu announced the development of two new Marvel-centric series, Ghost Rider (with Gabriel Luna reprising his role from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) and Helstrom. The shows were intended to kick off a standalone "Adventure into Fear" franchise that would bring a chilling horror element to the Marvel formula. Ghost Rider soon fell by the wayside, and by December 2019, Marvel Television was shut down. That makes Helstrom the sole survivor of the planned fear-based franchise. Shooting finished in March, right before the coronavirus pandemic caused most Hollywood productions to grind to a halt. Showrunner Paul Zbyszewski's contract was terminated in April—also due to the pandemic—but he stayed on for postproduction.

The series focuses on two characters from Marvel Comics. First: Daimon Helstrom, the son of Satan, introduced in Ghost Rider #1 (1973). He eventually became a recurring character in The Defenders. The other protagonist is his sister, Satana (Ana in the TV adaptation), who embraces the occult and her paternal heritage while Daimon chooses to defend humanity. Per the official premise: "The world isn’t ready for a Helstrom family reunion. As the son and daughter of a mysterious and powerful serial killer, Helstrom follows Daimon (Tom Austen) and Ana Helstrom (Sydney Lemmon), and their complicated dynamic, as they track down the worst of humanity—each with their own attitude and skills."

Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Russia offers its untested COVID-19 vaccine for free to UN officials

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 3:59pm
A smirking man in a suit sits in front of a UN flag.

Enlarge / Russian President Vladimir Putin address the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly, via teleconference call, in Moscow on September 22, 2020. (credit: Getty | MIKHAIL KLIMENTYEV)

Some United Nations staff are likely brushing up on their Russian—specifically how to say “Thanks, but no thanks” in the nicest way possible.

On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin offered UN staff free doses of the country’s COVID-19 vaccine, Sputnik V, which has not completed clinical trials for efficacy and has not been thoroughly vetted for safety.

Still, Putin suggested that his offer was prompted by the desire to give the people what they want: “Some colleagues from the UN have asked about this, and we will not remain indifferent to them,” he said during a speech Tuesday at this year’s (virtual) General Assembly.

Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

NASA wants a big budget increase for its Moon plans. Is Congress biting?

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 2:46pm
A man in a suit speaks in front of a mural of the Moon landing.

Enlarge / NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine says that competition is good for the Artemis Moon program. (credit: NASA)

The odds of NASA sending humans back to the Moon by 2024 are long—not zero, but pretty close.

Probably the biggest near-term impediment the space agency faces is funding. Specifically, NASA requires an additional $3.2 billion in fiscal year 2021 to allow contractors to begin constructing one or more landers to take astronauts down to the Moon's surface from a high lunar orbit. This is a 12 percent increase to NASA's budget overall.

The 2021 fiscal year begins in a week, on October 1. The US Congress recently passed a "continuing resolution" that will keep the government funded through December 11. By that time, after the 2020 election, it is hoped that the House and Senate can agree on a budget that would fund priorities for the remainder of the fiscal year.

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California bans new internal combustion engines, starting in 2035

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 2:26pm
The words Mad Gas 2035 are printed in a Mad Max Fury Road typeface.

Enlarge (credit: Aurich Lawson / Getty Images)

On Wednesday, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order requiring that all new passenger cars and trucks sold in the state from 2035 be zero-emissions vehicles. Additionally, all drayage trucks—the ones that move containers around at places like the Port of Los Angeles—must also go emissions free by this date, as well as off-road vehicles and equipment. Medium- and heavy-duty vehicles get an extra decade to comply, but by 2045 these too must ditch internal combustion engines.

Although this is the first such ICE ban in the United States, Governor Newsom is following in the footsteps of policymakers in Europe, China, and elsewhere. In 2016, Paris, Madrid, Athens, and Mexico City announced bans on new diesel vehicles from 2025. The same year, Germany's Bundesrat voted to outlaw new ICE vehicles from 2030, although this was not a binding resolution.

The following year, France announced that new ICE vehicles would be banned from 2040. The UK also picked 2040 as the end of new gasoline and diesel vehicles within its borders, a timeline that in February was brought forward by five years to 2035, then this past Monday it was brought forward another five years, to 2030. And China is also phasing out internal combustion vehicles, albeit over a longer timeline.

Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Apple’s new iPad and Apple Watch are already (slightly) discounted on Amazon

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 2:10pm
Collage of electronic consumer goods against a white background.

Enlarge

Today's Dealmaster is headlined by a couple of small but notable discounts on the new 10.2-inch iPad and Apple Watch Series 6. The former is currently down to $299 at Amazon, while the latter is down to $385. Those are $30 and $15 discounts, respectively.

These are not massive deals, clearly, and as of this writing, Amazon says the Apple Watch may take a few weeks to ship. But given that both devices only became available within the past week, we figured the discounts were worth noting for early adopters who might be able to save a few bucks by not buying directly from Apple.

As for the devices themselves, the eighth-generation iPad is largely a spec bump over the previous model. It keeps the design language of older iPads, with a Lightning port, non-laminated display, and relatively large bezels. But it still supports Apple's Smart Keyboard and first-generation Pencil stylus, it still offers excellent mobile software in iPadOS, and it should provide stronger performance now that it's jumped from Apple's A10 processor to the A12 chip found in the iPhone XS and iPad Mini. It's not as sexy as the new iPad Air, but it should still hold appeal for casual entertainment and getting light work done.

Read 3 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Justice Dep’t. sends its Section 230 rewrite to Congress

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 1:30pm
Cartoon hands hold out a band-aid over the words Section 230.

Enlarge (credit: Aurich Lawson / Getty Images)

The Department of Justice today dropped a proposed "recalibration" of one of the most important laws governing the US Internet into Congress's lap and urged legislators to act to remove a liability protection on which nearly every website and app currently relies.

Attorney General Bill Barr sent the proposed legislation—an extension of his June wish list—to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Mike Pence (in his role as President of the Senate) this morning.

"For too long Section 230 has provided a shield for online platforms to operate with impunity," Barr said in a written statement. "Ensuring that the internet is a safe, but also vibrant, open, and competitive environment is vitally important to America," he added. "We therefore urge Congress to make these necessary reforms to Section 230 and begin to hold online platforms accountable both when they unlawfully censor speech and when they knowingly facilitate criminal activity online."

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Sinister trailer for Haunting of Bly Manor looks like a classic ghost story

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 12:50pm

Victoria Pedretti stars as a governess to two orphans on a spooky estate in The Haunting of Bly Manor.

The Halloween season is almost upon us, so brace yourselves for the annual onslaught of horror fare. But we're also getting a good old-fashioned spooky ghost story with the Netflix series, The Haunting of Bly Manor, loosely based on The Turn of the Screw while incorporating several other ghost stories by Henry James. The series is showrunner Mike Flanagan's highly anticipated follow-up to 2018's exquisitely brooding The Haunting of Hill House. The first teaser dropped earlier this month, and now the streaming platform has released the full trailer.

(Spoilers for the Henry James novel below.)

The Haunting of Hill House shared the top spot in Ars' 2018 list of our favorite TV shows with BBC's Killing Eve. We loved Mike Flanagan and Trevor Macy's inventive reimagining of Shirley Jackson's classic novel, at once a Gothic ghost story and a profound examination of family dysfunction. It stayed true to the tone and spirit of the original, aided by dialogue, narration, and other small details from the source material. Small wonder that it garnered award nominations from the Motion Picture Sound Editors, Writers Guild of America, and Art Directors Guild.

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T-Mobile hits back at AT&T and Verizon after spectrum-hoarding accusations

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 11:40am
T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert speaks during a keynote at CES 2020 in Las Vegas on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020.

Enlarge / T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert speaks during a keynote at CES 2020 in Las Vegas on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020. (credit: Getty Images | Bloomberg)

T-Mobile US CEO Mike Sievert yesterday fired back at AT&T and Verizon, saying the carriers' complaints about T-Mobile obtaining more spectrum licenses show that they are afraid of competition.

"The duopolists are scrambling to block this new competition any way they can... Suddenly in the unfamiliar position of not having a dominant stranglehold on the wireless market, and preferring not to meet the competitive challenge in the marketplace, AT&T and Verizon are urging the FCC to slow T-Mobile down and choke off our ability to compete fairly for added radio spectrum," Sievert wrote in a blog post.

As we wrote Monday, Verizon and AT&T have urged the Federal Communications Commission to impose limits on T-Mobile's ability to obtain more spectrum licenses. AT&T complained that T-Mobile's acquisition of Sprint allowed it to amass "an unprecedented concentration of spectrum."

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Samsung’s Galaxy S20 Fan Edition is a 120Hz phone for $699

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 10:25am

Today, Samsung held its third product event in a month and a half to launch the "Galaxy S20 FE," a value-oriented take on the company's flagship smartphone line. If these Samsung phones are getting hard to keep track of, that's because, by our count, this is the company's 11th "flagship" smartphone model for 2020, after the Exynos and Qualcomm versions of the Galaxy S20, S20 Plus, S20 Ultra, Note 20, and Note 20 Ultra.

This particular model seems worth keeping track of, though, since Samsung aims to bring some premium smartphone features down from the stratospheric price of earlier models. For $699, you get a 6.5-inch 2400×1080 OLED display with two big features: 1) it's 120Hz, just like the $900 OnePlus 8 Pro, and 2) the display is flat, instead of the distorted, curved screens that usually ship on high-end Android phones. In the United States, the phone gets a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865, 6GB of RAM, 128GB of storage, and a 4500mAh battery. The phone has wireless charging, an optical (not ultrasonic) fingerprint reader, NFC, a MicroSD slot, IP68 dust and water resistance, and ships with Android 10. For cameras, you have a 12MP main camera, a 12MP ultrawide, and an 8MP 3x telephoto. The front camera is a 32MP sensor in a hole-punch display cutout. The back is plastic, while the front is Gorilla Glass.

The "FE" in "Galaxy S20 FE" stands for "Fan Edition," a name the company last used when it scraped together the leftover un-exploded Galaxy Note 7 parts to make the Galaxy Note FE. The Note 7 was infamous for having a flawed battery design that would short-circuit and cause the phone to catch fire or explode. After two recalls and a long investigation, Samsung re-released the Note 7 with a smaller battery as the "FE." It's not clear why Samsung chose to resurrect the "Fan Edition" branding and reference one of the darkest moments in the company's history. But I'm no marketing expert.

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How Tesla plans to make batteries cheap enough for a $25,000 car

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 9:20am
How Tesla plans to make batteries cheap enough for a $25,000 car

Enlarge (credit: Aurich Lawson / Getty Images)

Tesla's business model depends on continuous improvements in the cost and energy density of batteries. When Tesla was founded in 2003, it was barely possible to build a battery-powered sports car with a six-figure price tag. Over the next 15 years, cheaper and more powerful batteries enabled Tesla to build roomier cars with longer ranges at lower prices.

Tesla expects that progress to continue—and maybe even accelerate—in the next few years. And it isn't waiting for other companies to come up with better battery designs. In recent years, Tesla has had a large team of engineers re-thinking every aspect of Tesla's batteries, from the chemistry inside the cells to the way the batteries are incorporated into vehicles.

At a much-touted Tuesday event, Tesla pulled back the curtain on a suite of improvements the company hopes to roll out in the next three years. In total, Tesla says that all of these innovations put together will enable a 56-percent reduction in the per-kWh cost of its batteries.

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We are in possession of a working Xbox Series X

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 9:00am

It's a busy week for all things Xbox. On Monday, Microsoft confirmed its acquisition of the Bethesda and ZeniMax game-dev family to fuel the Xbox ecosystem going forward. On Tuesday, the company launched preorders for this November's Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S.

And today, Microsoft topped all of that off by shipping us a "non-final" Series X of our own—and I have immediately begun testing it.

As the above gallery shows, Ars Technica received a package from Microsoft's headquarters in Redmond, Washington, containing a "non-final" Xbox Series X console, the brand-new Xbox gamepad, and a 1TB "storage expansion" card, as built to the Xbox Velocity Architecture spec and made by Seagate. Nothing else came in this box (besides an HDMI 2.1 cable and a power cord, anyway).

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Apparent prototype photos show Sony’s canned “PlayStation phone” followup

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 8:52am

There is an alternate universe where Sony Ericsson's 2011 release of the Xperia Play was a huge success. In that universe, a substantial portion of today's mobile games are played on similar successor devices, complete with physical buttons and d-pads that slide out from underneath the screen.

Today, we get a brief glimpse into that universe via late leaked photos of what seems to be a prototype of a planned Xperia Play 2.

The above photos (as discovered on the Sony Xperia subreddit) originate from a reseller on China's Taobao platform, which specializes in person-to-person sales of new and used goods. Ars can't independently verify the authenticity of the images, but they do line up somewhat with concept art for the Xperia Play 2 that leaked in 2012.

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Everything we know about Volkswagen’s $40,000 ID.4 electric crossover

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 8:15am

On Wednesday, in an Internet livestream, Volkswagen unveiled the ID.4 crossover. Designed from the ground up as a battery electric vehicle, it's part of a huge electrification plan that VW embarked on in the wake of dieselgate and the first of the new VW BEVs to reach these shores. More than that, it was designed with the US market firmly in mind. No edgy European hatchback or city car here—this is pure crossover.

I thought ID.4 was a Will Smith film?

The ID.4 is one of a number of new BEVs that VW is building using a big box of interchangeable parts called MEB (Modularer E-Antriebs-Baukasten or Modular Electrification Toolkit). (Yes, that is a whole lot of acronyms.) We've seen MEB wrapped up in a number of different concept cars over the past few years and even drove one last year. But the first production model—the Europe-only ID.3 hatchbackstarted deliveries across the pond a few weeks ago, following some software- and COVID-19-related delays.

That car was deemed too much of a risk for the US market, which emphatically likes its VWs as crossovers these days. I got a chance to poke around a production prototype last week, and it's one of those rare cases where the transformation from concept to road-legal actually improved things. Size-wise, it's a little smaller than a VW Tiguan, at 180.5 inches (4,585mm) long, 72.9 inches (1,852mm) wide, and 64.4 inches (1,636mm) tall. There are some styling tricks in effect—the black panels along the sills and the trailing edges of the C pillars—but as with the Ford Mustang Mach-E, they're actually quite successful in detracting from some of the ID.4's visual bulk. For those keeping score, the drag coefficient is 0.28; no word on frontal area, though.

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Android 11—The Ars Technica Review

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 7:30am
Android 11—The Ars Technica Review

Enlarge (credit: Google)

Android 11 has finally arrived after a lengthy beta process that started approximately three years ago in February 2020. This is the 30th release of Android, if we're counting by API levels, and in a year when it seems nearly everything has been delayed or canceled, Google has managed to turn in one of the smaller Android releases.

Last year, Android 10 was a massive release, adding gesture navigation, a dark mode, Project Mainline, a dual-boot system, scoped storage, foldable smartphone support, and a million other things. In comparison, Android 11 is more limited. This being the annual Ars Technica review, however, there are of course still plenty of things to talk about—like yet another notification panel revamp, a new media player, chat bubbles, smart home controls, and more.

Table of Contents The notification panel

The notification panel is one of the biggest strengths of Android, and Google can't seem to let a major release go by without iterating on it. This year, the theme seems to be around organization and creating what Google calls a "dedicated persistent space" for certain types of notifications.

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Lenovo begins selling OEM Ubuntu PCs to the general public

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 6:00am
Promotional image of desktop computer.

Enlarge / No, that's not a pink panther—that catlike critter is a fossa, and it's both mascot and default wallpaper of Ubuntu 20.04, preloaded on this ThinkStation P920. (credit: Lenovo)

Beginning today, Lenovo is offering a greatly expanded selection of OEM Linux PCs to the general public. Earlier this year, Lenovo began offering Fedora Linux pre-installed on laptop systems including Thinkpad P1 Gen 2, Thinkpad P53, and Thinkpad X1 Gen 8. Today's announcement makes Ubuntu Linux available on a considerably broader swath of both desktop and laptop PCs.

ThinkPad T14 (AMD and Intel) ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 5 ThinkPad P1 Gen 3 ThinkPad T14s (AMD and Intel) ThinkPad L14 ThinkStation P340 ThinkPad T15p ThinkPad L15 ThinkStation P340 Tiny ThinkPad T15 ThinkPad P15s ThinkStation P520c ThinkPad X13 (AMD and Intel) ThinkPad P15v ThinkStation P520 ThinkPad X13 Yoga ThinkPad P15 ThinkStation P620 ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 3 ThinkPad P17 ThinkStation P720 ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 8 ThinkPad P14s ThinkStation P920

The devices themselves—and their Ubuntu certifications—aren't new, but the public accessibility is. Previously, these systems were only available to enterprise customers via custom bid, but the 27 new models—mostly featuring Ubuntu 20.04, except for the L series laptops featuring Ubuntu 18.04—will now be available for retail purchase through Lenovo.com. Just beware of the footnote warning that some models may be limited to specific markets, and the rollout is to occur in phases—at press time, we're still only seeing the Carbon X1 available with OEM Linux in Lenovo's US store.

Although it has been simple for individual customers "in the know" about enterprise-only model certifications to buy those machines with Windows and install Ubuntu themselves, the new OEM program removes roadblocks in both knowing which systems to buy and getting factory support on them once installed.

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Shock treatment: Ratched is a stylishly gruesome soap opera dialed up to 11

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 4:52am

Sarah Paulson plays Nurse Mildred Ratched in Ratched, series creator Evan Romansky's prequel (of sorts) to One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

One of the most iconic movie villains of all time gets the American Horror Story treatment in Ratched, Netflix's star-studded prequel, of sorts, to Director Milos Forman's Oscar-winning 1975 film, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. The series is richly styled and visually striking, and the cast is terrific, but there's very little substance or insight, and the plotting is a meandering mess riddled with holes and inconsistent characterizations. It's basically a body horror soap opera in which everything is dialed up to 11 for maximum shock value.

(Spoilers for One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest book and film below. Some spoilers for Ratched but no major reveals.)

As I wrote previously, Forman's film is based on the 1962 novel of the same name by Ken Kesey. It's set in a psychiatric hospital in Salem, Oregon, where Randle Patrick McMurphy (Jack Nicholson) is sent after faking insanity to escape a prison farm sentence for assault and the statutory rape of a 15-year-old girl. The cold, rigidly controlled (and controlling) Nurse Mildred Ratched (aka Big Nurse, played by Louise Fletcher) rules the place with an iron hand. She maintains order by withholding basic necessities, medications, or patient privileges—with the occasional bit of hydrotherapy and electroshock therapy for especially unruly patients—but McMurphy's rebellious nature challenges her authority.

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The fight over the fight for California’s privacy future

ArsTechnica - Wed, 09/23/2020 - 2:25am
The fight over the fight for California’s privacy future

Enlarge (credit: Aurich Lawson / Getty Images)

When state Senator Bob Hertzberg learned that an ambitious privacy initiative had gotten enough signatures to qualify for the ballot in California, he knew he had to act quickly.

“My objective,” he says, “was to get the damn thing off the ballot.”

It was the spring of 2018. Facebook’s emerging Cambridge Analytica scandal had cast a harsh light on the tech giants’ data-gathering practices, spurring calls for more consumer privacy protections. The initiative was the brainchild of Alastair Mactaggart, a wealthy San Francisco real estate developer, who had the idea in the shower in 2015 and funded the effort out of pocket. Mactaggart enlisted his neighbor Rick Arney and Mary Stone Ross, a former CIA analyst and lawyer, to help craft the ballot measure. None had any background in data privacy or, for that matter, anything related to the tech industry.

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