ArsTechnica

  • 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no 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 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
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Updated: 34 min 24 sec ago

Jack Dorsey resigns as CEO of Twitter

Mon, 11/29/2021 - 9:54am
Twitter cofounder and CEO Jack Dorsey at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), on November 12, 2018, in New Delhi, India.

Enlarge / Twitter cofounder and CEO Jack Dorsey at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), on November 12, 2018, in New Delhi, India. (credit: Amal KS | Hindustan Times | Getty Images)

Jack Dorsey announced today that he’s stepping down as CEO of Twitter, the social network he helped found in 2006. The change is effective immediately.

Dorsey did not say what spurred the sudden move, though in his resignation letter, which he also shared on Twitter, he said, “There has been a lot of talk about the importance of a company being ‘founder-led.’ Ultimately, I believe that’s severely limiting and a single point of failure. I’ve worked hard to ensure this company can break away from its founding and founders.”

Parag Agrawal, the company’s chief technical officer, has been named the new CEO. “The board ran a rigorous process considering all options and unanimously appointed Parag," Dorsey wrote. "He’s been my choice for some time given how deeply he understands the company and its needs.”

Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

The best smartwatch and fitness tracker deals for Cyber Monday

Mon, 11/29/2021 - 9:19am
The Garmin Forerunner 945 LTE main screen

Enlarge / The Garmin Forerunner series is a top choice for runners. (credit: Corey Gaskin)

(Update 11/29/21 11:20 am EST): With Cyber Monday now in motion, we've made sure our guide to the best wearable deals we can find is up to date.

The Black Friday barrage has officially turned into a Cyber Monday avalanche. We're continuously curating a big list of the best deals we can find, but among the discounts so far, we've spotted a number of worthwhile deals on smartwatches and fitness trackers we've previously recommended, including several picks from our recently updated guide to the best smartwatches. And if you're already strapped up with a tracker and looking for the next great way to use it, we're also seeing a few good deals on higher-end fitness machines we can vouch for.

In any event, to help you sort through the holiday shopping noise, we've highlighted a few fitness tracker and smartwatch deals that we think are particularly worth your time below.

Read 27 remaining paragraphs | Comments

James Webb Space Telescope cleared for late December launch

Mon, 11/29/2021 - 7:45am
Artist's impression of the James Webb Space Telescope in space.

Enlarge / Artist's impression of the James Webb Space Telescope in space. (credit: NASA)

Following a scare last week, NASA and European Space Agency officials have said they will continue launch preparations for the James Webb Space Telescope. The $10 billion instrument is slated to launch on a European-built Ariane 5 rocket no earlier than December 22.

NASA said that engineers have completed additional testing to ensure the telescope's readiness for flight, and fueling operations began on November 25. The telescope has 20 small thrusters for maneuvering and will be filled with about 240 liters of hydrazine fuel and dinitrogen tetroxide oxidizer. The fueling process will take about 10 days.

The decision to press ahead with the Webb telescope's launch countdown counts as good news after a slightly worrisome announcement one week ago. On November 22, NASA said it would delay the space telescope's planned launch by a few days to investigate an "anomaly" during processing operations at the launch site in Kourou, French Guiana.

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UK farmer went for a walk, stumbled on remains of rare Roman mosaic and villa

Mon, 11/29/2021 - 6:43am
A Roman villa complex containing a rare mosaic has been discovered beneath a farmer’s field in Rutland, UK.
A Roman villa complex containing a rare mosaic has been discovered beneath a farmer’s field in Rutland, UK.

Going into lockdown during the pandemic provided an unexpected boon to a farmer in Rutland, England: he stumbled upon the remains of an old Roman mosaic and surrounding villa complex, dating back to between 300 and 400 CE. Archaeologists are hailing the find as one of the most significant mosaics yet found in Great Britain, and the entire site has been declared a protected area. It will be featured next year on the British documentary TV series Digging for Britain.

This isn't the first interesting archaeological find from the Roman occupation of Britain. For instance, back in 2018, we reported that archaeologists flying over a prehistoric settlement in southern Wales had spotted the ghostly outline of a Roman villa on the ground inside a known older prehistoric settlement’s boundaries. And in 2020, a 2000-year-old stylus (the equivalent of a cheap souvenir, complete with a suitably corny inscription) turned up in a collection of some 1,400 artifacts that had been excavated from a site on the banks of the River Walbrook, a tributary of the Thames that now flows beneath the city’s streets.

As Kiona Smith wrote at the time:

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Three high-end home gym machines we like are on sale for Cyber Monday

Mon, 11/29/2021 - 6:26am
Three high-end home gym machines we like are on sale for Cyber Monday

Enlarge (credit: Peloton)

I'm a bit of a fitness nerd year-round, but with Cyber Monday sales in full swing, right now is a good time to save on fitness tech. From deals on wearables to full-body workout machines, we're seeing more than a few discounts that can set you up nicely to burn calories, not money, in the new year.

For bigger-ticket fitness gear like the popular Peloton bike or athlete-endorsed Tonal home gym, though, discounts can be few and far between. But even these upmarket solutions are seeing rare discounts for Cyber Monday. If you have cash to burn and want to give your home gym a makeover, here are three Cyber Monday deals worth your attention on high-end fitness tech we like.

Our Cyber Monday Coverage

Read 14 remaining paragraphs | Comments

All the best Cyber Monday 2021 video game deals we can find, in one place

Sun, 11/28/2021 - 5:32pm
As usual, a whole lot of video games are on sale for Black Friday.

Enlarge / As usual, a whole lot of video games are on sale for Black Friday. (credit: Ars Technica)

Black Friday has come and gone, but many of its most notable deals are still going. We have a big roundup of the best deals we're seeing more generally, but here we've updated our dedicated roundup of the best video game discounts we can find for Cyber Monday, since a metric ton of them remain available.

Major retailers like AmazonTarget, Best Buy, and GameStop are still in the midst of their holiday sales, as are the digital storefronts for Xbox, Nintendo, and PlayStation. And while many of the steepest high-profile game discounts we're seeing are for consoles, PC gaming storefronts like SteamEpic, GOG, and Humble are still running sweeping sales as well, bringing price drops on several indie games we like in particular.

We've pored over as many advertised offers as we can find from all of these promotions and listed the genuine discounts we like below, spotlighting a few particularly notable offers along the way.

Read 44 remaining paragraphs | Comments

The ancient origins of glass

Sun, 11/28/2021 - 8:00am
Rainbow-colored glass fish.

Enlarge / This glass fish was found in a fairly modest private house in Amarna, buried under a plaster floor along with a few other objects. It may once have contained ointment. (credit: Trustees of the British Museum)

Today, glass is ordinary, on-the-kitchen-shelf stuff. But early in its history, glass was bling for kings.

Thousands of years ago, the pharaohs of ancient Egypt surrounded themselves with the stuff, even in death, leaving stunning specimens for archaeologists to uncover. King Tutankhamen's tomb housed a decorative writing palette and two blue-hued headrests made of solid glass that may once have supported the head of sleeping royals. His funerary mask sports blue glass inlays that alternate with gold to frame the king's face.

In a world filled with the buff, brown, and sand hues of more utilitarian Late Bronze Age materials, glass—saturated with blue, purple, turquoise, yellow, red, and white—would have afforded the most striking colors other than gemstones, says Andrew Shortland, an archaeological scientist at Cranfield University in Shrivenham, England. In a hierarchy of materials, glass would have sat slightly beneath silver and gold and would have been valued as much as precious stones were.

Read 36 remaining paragraphs | Comments

We transformed a London borough into a game to get fewer people traveling by car

Sun, 11/28/2021 - 7:30am
Dice on a table.

Enlarge (credit: Jacqui Brown / Flickr)

In England, only 37 percent of adults aged 16 or over travel actively (walk, cycle, scoot, or wheel to get from place to place) at least twice a month. We need to find exciting ways to encourage more people to travel actively for the sake of population and planetary health.

Active travel can help reduce congestion, air pollution, and climate change. However, in the UK—as in many countries across the world—traveling by car remains the dominant social norm.

Our research shows that gamification—offering points, badges, prizes, or spots on a leaderboard in exchange for participating in specific, non-game-related activities—can encourage people to travel actively to school or work.

Read 20 remaining paragraphs | Comments

How Foundation preserved Asimov’s big ideas while bringing the story to vivid life

Sun, 11/28/2021 - 6:00am
Screenshot from Foundation trailer

Enlarge / The only constant is change in Apple TV's adaptation of Isaac Asimov's Foundation. (credit: YouTube/Apple TV+)

When showrunner David S. Goyer took on the monumental task of adapting Isaac Asimov's hugely influential Foundation series of science fiction novels for Apple TV+, he knew it would not be a straightforward matter. As I've written previously, the author himself admitted that he wrote strictly for the printed page, and he always refused invitations to adapt his work for film or TV.

But Asimov was more than happy to let others adapt his work to a new medium, and he was wise enough to expect that there would—and should—be significant departures from the print version. In doing so, Goyer had to strike a balance between respecting Asimov's sweeping visionary ideas without lapsing into slavish reverence and over-pontification. To my mind, he did it beautifully, producing more of a remix than a straight adaptation that is compelling and powerful in its own right.

Another challenge was figuring out how to incorporate science and technology that was reasonably accurate. An astrobiologist and planetary scientist at Jet Propulsion Lab, Kevin Hand had worked with Goyer years before on Krypton, and the two had stayed in touch. So when Goyer needed a scientist with expertise in space, interstellar travel, and planetary dynamics, among other topics, naturally he turned to Hand.

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This decorated mammoth ivory pendant is 41,500 years old

Sun, 11/28/2021 - 5:15am
This decorated mammoth ivory pendant is 41,500 years old

Enlarge (credit: Talamo et al. 2021)

While our species was spreading across Eurasia and briefly sharing a continent with the last of the Neanderthals, someone took the time to carefully shape an oval pendant out of mammoth ivory, then decorated it with a looping dotted line. The pendant, unearthed at Stajnia Cave in Poland, was recently radiocarbon dated to around 41,500 years old. That makes it the oldest known example of a Paleolithic fashion that reached from France to Siberia between 42,000 and 30,000 years ago.

An ancient ivory pendant

Archaeologists excavating the cave found the ivory pendant broken into two pieces. When reassembled, the fragments form most of an oval, with one end still broken and missing. About 50 puncture marks dot its surface, forming a sharply curved, looping shape. The pendant’s edges are smooth and rounded, and although its surface is cracked and weathered after tens of thousands of years in the ground, it’s easy to see that it must once have been an elaborate, lovely piece of jewelry—or, as archaeologists say, “portable art.”

Today, we have no way to know what the dotted curving lines on the mammoth ivory pendant meant to the people who made and wore the object. Those details are lost to us, but University of Bologna paleoanthropologist Sahra Talamo and her colleagues suggest hunting tallies or notations about the passing of lunar phases or cycles.

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Why Omicron quickly became a variant of concern

Sat, 11/27/2021 - 10:54am
That's a lot of mutations.

Enlarge / That's a lot of mutations. (credit: Stanford)

On Friday, the World Health Organization officially named a new version of the SARS-CoV-2 virus a variant of concern and attached the Greek letter omicron to the designation. The Omicron variant is notable for the sheer number of mutations in the spike protein of the virus. While Omicron appears to have started spreading in Africa, it has already appeared in European countries like Belgium and the UK, which are working to limit its spread through surveillance and contact tracing.

As of now, the data on the variant is very limited; we don't currently know how readily it spreads compared to other variants, nor do we understand the degree of protection against Omicron offered by vaccines or past infections. The new designation, however, will likely help focus resources on studying Omicron's behavior and tracing its spread.

Many changes

While the Delta variant's version of spike has nine changes compared to the virus that started the pandemic, Omicron has 30 differences. While many of these haven't been identified previously, a number of these have been seen in other strains, where they have a variety of effects. These include increasing infectiousness of the virus, as a number of the changes increase the affinity between the spike protein and the protein on human cells that it targets when starting a new infection.

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To help people with long COVID, scientists need to define it

Sat, 11/27/2021 - 5:50am
A white-haired woman in a wheelchair looks out a window.

Enlarge (credit: Morsa Images | Getty Images)

Almost from the beginning of the COVID pandemic, reports have accumulated of persistent, weird, disabling symptoms in survivors, a syndrome that's come to be known as long COVID. The complex of fatigue, confusion, heart arrhythmias, gut disorders, and other problems—which may persist months after an infection begins or arise months after it seems to have concluded—has attracted attention and sympathy, intense patient activism, substantial research interest, and huge government investment. Last December, the US Congress voted in $1.15 billion to fund four years of research into long COVID, and this February, the US National Institutes of Health announced it would use those funds to create a nested set of large studies examining adult and child experiences of the syndrome.

What makes long COVID research urgent is also what makes it, at this point, so challenging. No one has yet been able to determine its cause, beyond the association that it occurs in people who have had COVID—or who think they did but weren't able to get a test to prove it. This makes it difficult to understand and therefore to predict who is vulnerable: why one patient develops lasting symptoms and another does not.

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It’s time to fear the fungi

Sat, 11/27/2021 - 4:55am
Microscopic image of blue bulbs on stalks against violet background.

Enlarge / Computer illustration of Candida fungi (yeast). The most common representatives of Candida fungi are C. albicans and C. auris with similar morphology. C. albicans is found on the skin and mucous membranes of the mouth, genitals, respiratory tract, and digestive tract. The most common disease caused by C. albicans is vaginal candidiasis (thrush). C. auris was first identified in 2009. It causes serious multidrug-resistant infections in hospitalized patients and has high mortality rates. (credit: Kateryna Kon | Science Photo Library | Getty)

There are plenty of things in this world that might keep you up at night. There's COVID-19, of course, but if you're anxious like me you could probably rattle off a very long list of additional fears: getting hit by a car, cancer, being poisoned by an ill-advised gas station meal, getting caught in a wildfire, electrocuting yourself plugging your laptop in at a dodgy cafe. But what is likely not high on your list is fungi. Unfortunately, that might be changing.

In 2009, a patient in Japan developed a new fungal infection on their ear. The highly transmissible Candida auris fungus had been previously unknown to science (and resistant to the drugs available to treat it), but within a few years, cases started emerging in Venezuela, Iran, Russia, and South Africa.

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David Tennant makes a dashing Phileas Fogg in Around the World in 80 Days preview

Fri, 11/26/2021 - 3:15pm

Phileas Fogg (David Tennant), Abigail Fix (Leonie Benesch), and Jean Passepartout (Ibrahim Koma) set out on the adventure of a lifetime in a new TV adaptation of Jules Verne's Around the World in 80 Days. The series debuts January 2, 2022.

Jules Verne's 1873 novel, Around the World in Eighty Days, inspired numerous real-life attempts to navigate the globe, as well as myriad film, TV, and radio adaptations of varying success. The latest TV adaption by the BBC stars a perfectly cast David Tennant as the globe-trotting adventurer Phileas Fogg, and judging from the preview, it looks like a particularly entertaining way to kick of the new year.

(Spoilers for the 1873 Jules Verne novel below.)

Fogg is the novel's main protagonist, a gentleman of modest fortune who gets into an argument with his pals at the Reform Club over a newspaper article about the opening of a new railway section in India. The article claims this makes it possible to circumnavigate the world in 80 days. Fogg's colleagues are skeptical, so he makes a wager that he can accomplish the feat. It's a significant wager, too, amounting to half of Fogg's fortune, with the other half required to finance his journey. If he doesn't succeed, he will be ruined. Fogg takes his new valet, Passepartout, with him, departing London by train. Complicating matters is a Scotland Yard detective named Fix, who mistakes Fogg for a fugitive bank robber and tracks the pair throughout their travels.

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Tesla forced to turn down €1.1 billion in EU support for German battery plant

Fri, 11/26/2021 - 10:13am
A Tesla logo superimposed over a mess of numbers and figures.

(credit: Tesla / Aurich Lawson)

Tesla has been forced to turn down more than 1.1 billion euros in European subsidies for its planned battery plant near Berlin after delays to the flagship project breached a key condition of the funding.

The electric car maker had applied for the money through an EU program established to develop the battery industry on the continent.

The EU requires any sites in receipt of the funds to be the “first industrial deployment” of the technology, according to official documents, meaning the batteries cannot already be made at another Tesla plant.

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Andrew and Lee continue watching The Wheel of Time—and it’s getting real

Fri, 11/26/2021 - 7:00am
We spend time getting to know some Aes Sedai in this episode, including Liandrin (Kate Fleetwood).

Enlarge / We spend time getting to know some Aes Sedai in this episode, including Liandrin (Kate Fleetwood). (credit: Amazon Studios)

Andrew Cunningham and Lee Hutchinson have spent decades of their lives with Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson's Wheel of Time books, and they're bringing that knowledge to bear as they recap each episode of Amazon's new WoT TV series. These recaps won't cover every element of every episode, but they will contain major spoilers for the show and the book series. If you want to stay unspoiled and haven't read the books, these recaps aren't for you.

New episodes of The Wheel of Time will be posted to Amazon Prime subscribers every Friday.
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Andrew: If I had to come up with a Friends-style episode title for this week's Wheel of Time episode, it would be "The One With The Dragon Reborn Misdirects."

I'm not sure how much screen time or effort I really want the show to devote to the Great Mystery Of Who The Dragon Reborn Is. Changing who it is would vault us out of "adaptation" territory and into the realm of fanfic, so at the end of the day, I don't really think the series is going to change it on us. But I will say that, if I knew nothing at all about the book series going in, the show is at least making a reasonable case that any of our five Two Rivers-ians could be the Dragon. And at least so far, the show is managing to do that in a way that is consistent with what we know about each of these characters' long arcs.

Lee: Oh yeah. I like the misdirection. We don't have the luxury in the show of getting into each character's head and knowing their internal landscape, so playing "Who's the Dragon?!" is a good way of giving the audience something substantial to chew on beyond just dialogue and setting. Showrunner Rafe Judkins has said that the show is not changing who the Dragon is and that book fans will know immediately. But this gives folks who haven't read the books a nice little mystery to ponder.

This episode gives us our first on-screen showing of what a male channeler's madness looks and feels like, too. In the scenes where Logain is facing down the king of Ghealdan, we see that the weaves he channels are mixed together with blackness—the corruption of the Dark One. (The show also uses "corruption" over the book's choice of "taint," presumably to avoid all the memes that would come from having everyone saying "taint" all the time. Haha, taint.) Logain is beset by shadowy figures that seem to form themselves out the corruption, and they seductively whisper dark things to him, like, "Hey, you should totally kill that king guy." It's a neat effect, and I think it works great.

And I'm enjoying Logain's... whatever the actor is doing. Sumptuousness? Weird presence? Whatever it is, Álvaro Morte is doing a great job of making Logain feel like the kind of bad guy who would definitely treat you to dinner plus a Bond villain monologue before murdering you.

Andrew: I am glad you mentioned the "taint" thing because if this adaptation keeps all the characters from talking and thinking about "the Dark One's taint" all the time then I will be willing to forgive any and all other shortcomings.

The visual effect of the taint corruption on the One Power is probably my favorite visual effect in the series so far, strictly in terms of how economical and effective it is. You can still see the wisps of white, mixed in among the inky tendrils, but even before you see Logain's madness manifest itself, it's clear that something is wrong here.

That we're meeting and talking to Logain at all is one of this episode's two big departure points from the books—I believe we only spy him from a distance once in Eye of the World, and he doesn't become a player in the story until a few books in.

We meet him because we're inside an Aes Sedai encampment, which Moiraine, Lan, and Nynaeve have sought out so that Moiraine's Trolloc-inflicted wound can be fully Healed. And the show uses this encampment to give us our first big dose of how Aes Sedai society is structured. We get a basic outline of the different Ajahs and their motivations, we hear about the Amyrlin Seat, we meet a few named characters from the books like Liandrin and Alanna. We physically move around a lot less in this episode, and the opportunity to take a breath makes the world-building and lore-dumping feel more organic and less forced.

I actually loved all the stuff with the Warders, since in the books you hear a lot about how they interact with each other but don't actually get to see the kind of comradely backslapping that happens here.

Lee: Agreed, the Warder stuff was fun. This is a very different Lan from the one we see in the books—still stoic, but not flinty and unapproachable. He and Nynaeve manage to have an entire conversation about Lan's fallen homeland of Malkier without either of them grunting or punching each other. I'm here for it—hell, I'm here for anything that makes Nynaeve less of the emotionally stunted bully desperately in need of therapy that she starts out as in the books.

Your comment about the Aes Sedai camp showing a bit of how Aes Sedai society works is dead on, and one of the most interesting bits is watching the Green sister in charge of the camp, Kerene (Clare Perkins) keeping Red sister Liandrin (Kate Fleetwood) firmly in check. Book readers know that among the Aes Sedai, women who are stronger with the One Power are kind of automatically in authority over those with lesser power, and Kerene (who Moiraine says has turned back entire armies with her channeling) is firmly in command. For a while, at least.

We also see a bit about why False Dragons are so feared—and what happens to them. A major job of the Red Ajah is to hunt down False Dragons and "gentle" them (that is, permanently sever them from the One Power, so that they can never again channel). False Dragons that have great strength in the One Power tend to raise armies of followers and wreak massive destruction—as Logain has done with Ghealdan. The Reds have snagged him up in a cage, and they're transporting him to the White Tower to be tried.

Andrew: You have to do a lot of setup in a very short period of time to get from "Nynaeve would slit Lan's throat" to "Lan's throat being slit would make her so upset that she could channel" in two episodes, but I think they get there? Maybe I am giving them too much credit because I already have Lan and Nynaeve's full relationship stored in my head, but it works.

I did also like the battle sequence we get here, which is pretty good at replicating what fighting with the One Power looks like in my head. Stopping a cloud of arrows in midair and then turning them around and killing your enemies with them? Badass. And appreciably different from anything you'd see in Game of Thrones.

Last little thing about the Aes Sedai camp I want to flag before we talk about the rest of the episode, but I am trying to get a read on Liandrin. Book readers will remember her as a relatively minor recurring villain. But by drawing so much attention to her so early on, I wonder if the show is planning on merging her character's and Elaida's? I guess we'll see if and when Rand and Mat make it to Caemlyn.

Lee: Merging Liandrin and Elaida would certainly simplify a few things, given their roles, though if the show keeps certain aspects of Liandrin's story the same, it would also create some interesting wrinkles—particularly because of how eager she is to get Logain gentled. Is her reason simply her inbuilt Red Ajah conviction to leash all male channelers, or something deeper?
Andrew: It might just be the Red Ajah leanings—based on the cold open for the series, I guessed that she was Elaida. If you're going to pick one Red Ajah character from the books, she's at the top of the list. My radar might be jammed by my residual surprise at seeing Liandrin so far from where she's "supposed" to be. And this is probably going to keep happening!
Lee: The battle with the One Power was done well, as was the linking effect when the women all join together to defeat Logain. And poor Stepin—once Kerene is killed, he goes a bit mad himself, which we learn is a consequence of the Aes Sedai/Warder bond being broken. We'll get some more depth on that in an upcoming episode, but it's being played up here for a reason.

And I do have one more thing I want to bring up, because I want to know your take. We know that women cannot see men channeling—the Aes Sedai in this episode make a point of saying it, as they maintain the shield that prevents Logain from touching the One Power while captive. But after Nynaeve has her breakthrough moment and heals the room, Logain seems to have seen it happen—after the lights fades, he says that Nynaeve was "like a raging sun."

What does this mean, man? Did Nynaeve's healing weaves generate a flash of visible nonpower light? Or did he see something?

Andrew: Well, now I can only imagine how the scene might have played if Logain couldn't see anything. Just a lady coming in and yelling, her giant braid flying straight up in the air of its own volition.

Going to file this under "more info needed." Male channelers in the books do get a sort of tingly feeling when women are channeling nearby, as I recall. The show could be playing that up. Or it could be a side effect of his madness. Or maybe the show has totally changed how the magic system works in ways we don't know about yet! The series hasn't precluded any of those possibilities.

But dang if this scene didn't work for me. Show-Nynaeve is still toward the top of my Amazon's The Wheel of Time Character Power-Rankings chart. But what is everyone else up to? We're getting pretty deep into the "split the party" chunk of EotW at this point.

Lee: It super worked. I was there for it.

But yes—how are our other characters doing? Rand and Mat and Thom have a moment at what the press notes say is the Grinwell family farm (but I don't believe they're named on-screen), and we get some great scenes out of it. We're watching some misdirection play out with this band of characters, since Thom is convinced Mat's ailments stem from being able to channel—young men come down with fever-like symptoms after first touching the One Power, and Thom's seen it happen before to a relative.

Andrew: Even though we savvy book readers (and possible some savvy show watchers who have noticed the camera linger on the knife a few times now) know that Mat is actually in the throes of KNIFE MADNESS.
Artist's rendering.

Artist's rendering. (credit: Amazon Studios/Paramount Pictures/Andrew Cunningham)

Lee: Along with Black Oil Like in the X-Files Coming Out of Your Mouth Disease, apparently—though that's probably a symptom of the KNIFE MADNESS, courtesy of Shadar Logoth.

But there were two things I specifically wanted to comment on—the first was that I was so pleased that Rand gives some encouragement to Mat while they're lying down to sleep, with his short "Hey, I'm here if you want to talk" speech. Aging these characters up a little lets them demonstrate a bit more emotional maturity than their 15-ish-year-old counterparts in the book, and it's nice to see Rand showing some genuine empathy and kindness. On the whole, Show-Rand seems to be a much less flaky guy than Book-Rand.

And, the last thing—we meet Birgitte Silverbow!

Sort of.

Andrew: Yeah that was a moment of unexpected tenderness. In the books you don't actually get to see a lot of moments of the three boys being actual friends, given how quickly and completely their entire lives change, and it's one thing the show has been able to shore up with a few economical scenes.

The show does seem to be eliding over one of the more fun sequences in the book, though—Rand and Mat on the run, using some Thom-taught party tricks to entertain villagers at inns and earn their way across the countryside. Thom is probably the major EotW character who has been cut back the most in this adaptation, give or take a Padan Fain, which is too bad because what we do get of him I enjoy a lot.

Lee: Oh, Fain's around—you gotta listen for that subtle whistling. On rewatch, I think I spied him in a couple of places. But yeah, he's nowhere near as front-and-center as I'd expected.
Andrew: Later on in the series, Rand goes back to things like Thom's flute to try and maintain some kind of connection to these more carefree (in retrospect! Only in retrospect) days. Given that we're inside Rand's head less, maybe the show will find other ways to do that. But I did find myself missing those scenes more than a lot of the others that have been snipped so far.
Lee: Still, I'm liking the little Rand-Mat-Thom sidestory—even if the Grinwells do meet an untimely end and Birgitte gets left behind. (Though I hope that's not all we see of her—maybe the Wheel will spin her out again?)

And that leaves... Tinker-Town with Egwene and Perrin. I have to admit that this is not my favorite chunk of the books—though it plays here about as well as it possibly can. We learn a bit about the Way of the Leaf and all things Tuatha'an. Young Aram (Daryl McCormack) is bright and bubbly, while his grandmother Ila (Maria Doyle Kennedy) conveys a feeling of weary determination at the heavy burden the Tinkers' brand of pacifism lays on one's shoulders. I think the actors here are doing a great job with a not-superinteresting bit of story—and one that, given how much else has been cut, I'm surprised didn't also end up on the editing-room floor. Then again, we know some of these characters have more of a role to play than what we're seeing here. (Trying to keep things reasonably future spoiler-free for non-book readers!)

Andrew: You get to the important thing, which is Perrin Has Deep Misgivings About Violence, In Part Because He Is Afraid Of How Good He Is At Violence. It hits a bit differently in the show because he KILLED HIS WIFE AND THEN LEFT TOWN, rather than simply using the axe to deal with direct threats to his person and friends. But it's there. I'm impressed by the costume and wagon design for the Tinkers, which are nearly pitch-perfect recreations of what is described the books. But these scenes follow the book pretty closely, and there's not a ton to say about them.

Maybe it was the 8% ABV sugar cookie flavored beer I was sipping while I watched it! But this episode worked for me in ways that the first three didn't always. I do think it benefits from slowing down, though I'm sure everyone will be on the run again soon enough. But I'm impressed by how well the show is (by and large, so far) capturing the essence of each character without being overly constrained by the exact scenes and story beats in the book. It does have to move fast, and it seems like Egwene and Nynaeve's mastery of channeling (among our characters' many other skills) is going to get developed way more quickly than it does in the books. But I did get a distinct "OK, when is the next one?" feeling as the credits rolled.

Lee: Definitely—feels like we're in the groove now. Which is good, since the end of this episode marks the halfway point for the season. Four down, four to go—and we'll be here after each one. Because death is lighter than a feather, but WoT reviewing duty is heavier than a mountain. Or something!

(credit: WoT Wiki)

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Humans have broken a fundamental law of the ocean

Fri, 11/26/2021 - 6:33am
Microphotograph of thalassiothrix frauenfeldii, Thalassionemataceae, phytoplankton.

Enlarge / Microphotograph of thalassiothrix frauenfeldii, Thalassionemataceae, phytoplankton. (credit: De Agostini Picture Library | Getty Images)

On November 19, 1969, the CCS Hudson slipped through the frigid waters of Halifax Harbour in Nova Scotia and out into the open ocean. The research vessel was embarking on what many of the marine scientists on board thought of as the last great, uncharted oceanic voyage: the first complete circumnavigation of the Americas. The ship was bound for Rio de Janeiro, where it would pick up more scientists before passing through Cape Horn—the southernmost point in the Americas—and then head north through the Pacific to traverse the ice-packed Northern Passage back to Halifax Harbour.

Along the way, the Hudson would make frequent stops so its scientists could collect samples and take measurements. One of those scientists, Ray Sheldon, had boarded the Hudson in Valparaíso, Chile. A marine ecologist at Canada’s Bedford Institute of Oceanography, Sheldon was fascinated by the microscopic plankton that seemed to be everywhere in the ocean: how far and wide did these tiny organisms spread? To find out, Sheldon and his colleagues hauled buckets of seawater up to the Hudson’s laboratory and used a plankton-counting machine to total up the size and number of creatures they found.

Life in the ocean, they discovered, followed a simple mathematical rule: the abundance of an organism is closely linked to its body size. To put it another way, the smaller the organism, the more of them you find in the ocean. Krill are a billion times smaller than tuna, for example, but they are also a billion times more abundant.

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The SWFT VOLT: A minimalist e-bike with a price to match

Fri, 11/26/2021 - 6:00am
Image of a bicycle.

Enlarge (credit: SWFT)

So far, the two e-bikes I've looked at on Ars have been targeting the high end: expensive components and a carefully thought-through riding experience. I looked at them because I thought their creators were trying to do interesting things with the e-bike format, especially compared to the commoditized bikes being offered on the low end.

But I realized that this was only giving me a partial perspective on the e-bike landscape; all I could really compare them with was high-end traditional bikes. So, I was intrigued when a company called SWFT got in touch about two models it was introducing, both at extremely competitive prices. I chose one in a hybrid format that should make it a great gravel bike, since there are a growing number of long-distance trails that require time on gravel.

The gravel bike thing didn't work out, but I did get a very different e-bike experience, which means it at least ticks the "interesting" box.

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All the best Black Friday 2021 deals we can find that are still available [Updated]

Thu, 11/25/2021 - 10:40pm
A sampling of the best Black Friday deals we've found.

Enlarge / A sampling of the best Black Friday deals we've found.

(Update 11/27/21 12:30 pm EST): Black Friday is in the rear-view mirror, but with Cyber Monday on the way, most of the better deals from our roundup are still kicking. We've updated our curated list accordingly, making sure prices are up to date and striking out offers that have expired (for now, at least).

Original post (11/26/21 12:40 am EST): The turkey has been consumed and the football games are over, which means the avalanche of Black Friday deals has begun. To help you sort through the barrage of breathless retailer promotions, we've pored over every so-called deal we can find, checking price histories and researching whether a product is worth buying in the first place to bring you this hand-picked roundup of the deals most worth your time.

If you've been following the early Black Friday sales that've ran over the past couple of weeks, many of the offers below may look familiar. Nevertheless, plenty of gadgets and gear we like are available at good prices. We'll update this list continuously, so feel free to bookmark this page in case something you've wanted sees a discount later.

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The 9 best deals on noise-canceling headphones we’re seeing for Black Friday

Thu, 11/25/2021 - 4:33pm
Noise-cancelling headphones

Enlarge / A handful of the wireless noise-canceling headphones we've tested in recent months. (credit: Jeff Dunn)

Black Friday has started its attack run, which means it's a good time to be in the market for a new pair of headphones. More specifically, a good set of noise-canceling headphones always seems to be in high demand during the gift-getting season. But if you're not sure which to buy, let us help you grab a good deal.

I've reviewed many wireless noise-canceling pairs for Ars over the past few years, from in-ears to over-ears, and some of the better options I've used happen to be on sale during the Black Friday barrage. Below are a handful of these top discounted recommendations, including picks from Sony, Apple, Bose, and more.

Ars Technica may earn compensation for sales from links on this post through affiliate programs.

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