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 '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.

YouTube TV warns it may lose all Disney-owned channels amid contract dispute

ArsTechnica - Tue, 12/14/2021 - 10:17am
YouTube app icon on a TV screen.

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Chris McGrath )

YouTube TV yesterday warned that it could lose all Disney-owned channels after Friday because of a contract dispute and said it will temporarily reduce its price by $15 a month if that happens.

"We're now in negotiations with Disney to continue distributing their content on YouTube TV so you can continue watching everything from your favorite teams on ESPN to The Bachelor to Good Morning America. Our deal expires on Friday, December 17, and we haven't been able to reach an equitable agreement yet, so we wanted to give you an early heads up so that you can understand your choices," the Google-owned YouTube wrote in a blog post.

"[I]f we are unable to reach a deal by Friday, the Disney-owned channels will no longer be available on YouTube TV and we will decrease our monthly price by $15, from $64.99 to $49.99 (while this content remains off our platform)," the blog post said. YouTube noted that users can pause or cancel their YouTube TV subscriptions at any time and subscribe to the Disney Bundle for $13.99 a month.

Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Dell’s Concept Luna PC disassembles easily so Dell can reuse its parts

ArsTechnica - Tue, 12/14/2021 - 9:00am
Dell's Concept Luna laptop.

Enlarge / Dell's Concept Luna laptop.

What do you do when your laptop screen breaks or the keyboard gives out? After some troubleshooting, you probably toss out the machine and upgrade. But what if some of your laptop's components could be harvested and put in another computer, like some Frankenstein creation? That's what Dell has in mind with its Concept Luna laptop project.

Concept Luna

According to the UN's Global E-waste Monitor 2020, only 17.4 percent of the 53.6 million metric tons of electronic waste created in 2019 was recycled. One of the sustainability goals Dell wants to achieve by 2030 is to reuse or recycle an equivalent product for every product a customer buys, with over 50 percent of product content being composed of recycled or renewable materials. And how will it get all those recyclable materials? Partially from Dell customers.

Last week, I was able to check out Concept Luna. Announced today, it's a laptop aimed at helping Dell achieve its environmental goals by offering parts that are easier to repair, reuse, and recycle. The machine is built to open up easily, so you can harvest its motherboard or other parts to use in future systems. Through this process, Dell hopes that a motherboard will be able to be used in up to three machines.

Read 22 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Hackers launch over 840,000 attacks through Log4J flaw

ArsTechnica - Tue, 12/14/2021 - 8:32am
Hackers launch over 840,000 attacks through Log4J flaw

Enlarge (credit: Matejmo | Getty Images)

Hackers including Chinese state-backed groups have launched more than 840,000 attacks on companies globally since last Friday, according to researchers, through a previously unnoticed vulnerability in a widely used piece of open-source software called Log4J.

Cyber security group Check Point said the attacks relating to the vulnerability had accelerated in the 72 hours since Friday, and that at some points its researchers were seeing more than 100 attacks a minute.

Perpetrators include “Chinese government attackers,” according to Charles Carmakal, chief technology officer of cyber company Mandiant.

Read 11 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Toyota opens up about its battery EV strategy, shows off new SUVs

ArsTechnica - Tue, 12/14/2021 - 8:00am
An array of Toyota and Lexus EV concepts shown on stage in Tokyo in 2021

Enlarge / Toyota is playing EV catchup, but it's evidently been busy behind closed doors working on some ideas, as seen above. (credit: Noriaki Mtsuhashi/N-RAK PHOTO AGENCY)

Despite being a pioneer in hybrid cars, Toyota failed to translate that knowledge and experience into a strong battery electric vehicle portfolio. Although the company collaborated with Tesla early in the last decade, it has recently taken to lobbying governments to water down decarbonization strategies rather than churning out BEVs. But that situation looks like it's set to change—at least in terms of the company presenting a stronger lineup of fully electrified products.

On Tuesday in Tokyo, the automaker held a briefing to discuss more details about its BEV plan. "Specifically, we plan to roll out 30 battery EV models by 2030, globally offering a full lineup of battery EVs in the passenger and commercial segments," said Toyota President Akio Toyoda.

Toyota wants to sell 3.5 million BEVs per year by that date, and it showed off a diverse array of EV concepts, many of which it says should appear as road versions in the next few years.

Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Leaky valve issue forces Boeing to swap out Starliner’s service module

ArsTechnica - Tue, 12/14/2021 - 6:56am
The very top of a rocket on a launch pad.

Enlarge / In early December 2019, the Starliner spacecraft is mated to its Atlas V rocket. (credit: Trevor Mahlmann)

Nearly two years have now come and gone since Boeing's Starliner spacecraft made its unsuccessful debut test flight, launching on December 20, 2019. Now, finally, there is some clarity on when the vehicle may launch again and attempt to dock with the International Space Station.

NASA and Boeing said Monday that they were working toward a launch of Starliner in May 2022. To accommodate this launch date for the "Orbital Flight-2" or OFT mission, Boeing will swap out a faulty service module—which provides power and propulsion to the Starliner capsule in flight—with a new one.

Boeing initially tried to fly OFT-2 in August. However, with less than five hours remaining in the countdown to launch, during a routine procedure, 13 of the 24 valves that control the flow of dinitrogen tetroxide oxidizer through the service module of the spacecraft would not cycle between closed and open. The launch was aborted.

Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Analogue Pocket, continued: What’s worth adding to retro system’s $220 base?

ArsTechnica - Tue, 12/14/2021 - 5:30am

As a dedicated, Game Boy-like handheld, Analogue Pocket offers plenty of self-contained fun for $219. So much fun, in fact, that I was able to write 8,000 words about it earlier this week.

Shortly after I finished that review, a box of Analogue-produced Pocket add-ons arrived at my doorstep. While its contents range from imperative to forgettable, they're all worth minding for prospective Pocket owners, as Analogue has never produced so many system-specific accessories before. Since they all return to Analogue's exclusive online store shortly after this article goes live (Tuesday, December 14, at 11 am EST, to be specific), consider this a checklist for how much to add to your frantic retro-gaming shopping cart.

Analogue Dock: Is that a Switch in your (Analogue) Pocket, or... ?

The most intriguing add-on in the system's launch window is a Pocket-specific TV dock. Its sales pitch is a combination of immediate features and teased perks for the near-future.

Read 33 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Win hardware, collectibles, and more in the 2021 Ars Technica Charity Drive

ArsTechnica - Tue, 12/14/2021 - 5:00am
Just some of the prizes available in this year's Ars Technica Charity Drive Sweepstakes

Enlarge / Just some of the prizes available in this year's Ars Technica Charity Drive Sweepstakes

It's once again that special time of year when we give you a chance to do well by doing good. That's right—it's time for the 2021 edition of our annual Charity Drive!

Every year since 2007, we've encouraged readers to give to Penny Arcade's Child's Play charity, which provides toys and games to kids being treated in hospitals around the world. In recent years, we've added the Electronic Frontier Foundation to our annual charity push, aiding in their efforts to defend Internet freedom. This year, as always, we're providing some extra incentive for those donations by offering donors a chance to win pieces of our big pile of vendor-provided swag. We can't keep it, and we don't want it clogging up our offices. So it's now yours to win.

This year's swag pile is full of high-value geek goodies. We have 39 prizes valued at over $1,600 total, including hardware, accessories, collectibles, smartwatches, apparel, and more. In 2020, Ars readers raised a record $58,000 for charity, contributing to a total haul of more than $394,000 since 2007. We want to raise even more this year, and we can do it if readers really dig deep.

Read 3 remaining paragraphs | Comments

“The situation is critical”: Minnesota hospitals beg people to get vaccinated

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 4:39pm
An older couple in a hospital.

Enlarge / A man prays at the bedside of his wife, who is intubated and remains critically ill after a COVID infection in the South Seven Intensive Care Unit Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2021 at North Memorial Health Hospital in Robbinsdale, Minn. (credit: Getty | Aaron Lavinsky)

Nine Minnesota hospital systems published a joint letter Sunday saying that all of their beds are full, doctors and nurses are overwhelmed and demoralized, and their ability to provide care is threatened.

"We're heartbroken, we're overwhelmed... The situation is critical," they wrote in the letter, which was published as full-page ads in newspapers statewide. It was signed by executives from Allina Health, Children's Minnesota, CentraCare, Essentia Health, Fairview Health Services, HealthPartners, Hennepin Healthcare, Mayo Clinic, and North Memorial Health.

Minnesota currently has the third-highest rate of new daily COVID-19 infections of any state in the US, with 76 cases per 100,000 people. Cases have risen 24 percent over the last two weeks, and they are expected to continue rising. Test positivity in the North Star State is currently over 11 percent, and only 64 percent of the state is fully vaccinated.

Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

iOS 15.2 and macOS 12.1 add several previously delayed features

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 3:10pm
The iPhone 13 Pro Max, photographed by the iPhone 13 Pro in low light.

Enlarge / The iPhone 13 Pro Max, photographed by the iPhone 13 Pro in low light. (credit: Samuel Axon)

As is customary, Apple has released new OS updates for virtually all of its devices in one giant volley today. The releases include iOS 15.2 and iPadOS 15.2, macOS Monterey 12.1, watchOS 8.3, and tvOS 15.2

All of these updates are now publicly available on supported devices. All but tvOS are x.x feature updates, meaning that they actually add new features instead of just fixing issues.

Depending on the OS, those features may include SharePlay, Apple Music Voice Plan, the App Privacy Report panel, and more.

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Logitech G303 Shroud Edition review: $130 wireless mouse for big-handed gamers

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 2:53pm
Logitech G303 Shroud Edition top view

Enlarge / Logitech G303 Shroud Edition. (credit: Scharon Harding)

What do you get when you take 2015's Logitech G Daedalus Apex G303, halve its weight, tweak the length and width, and cut the cable? Well, you get another G303. But this time, it's called the Logitech G G303 Shroud Edition. It's way more powerful and expensive ($130 MSRP) than its predecessor, and it's not for everyone.

Some of the changes made to the G303 were necessary for the mouse to compete in today's gaming landscape. At 2.6 oz (75 g), it's ready for first-person shooters and long sessions. At the same time, it avoids the aggressive sub-2-oz (57 g) ultralight category.

The G303 Shroud Edition is named so because it was made to the specifications of pro streamer Michael "Shroud" Grzesiek. What that means for you, besides some subtle Shroud branding on the mouse, is that you get a wider, flatter device. You'll need bigger hands to find comfort here, and even then, the mouse's pointy edges may turn you off. But if you're bigger-handed and have been seeking a wireless gaming mouse for your fingertip or claw grip, you may find some reasons to pick up the Shroud.

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Here’s how much Hyundai’s cool, new Ioniq 5 EV will cost

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 2:00pm
A slightly grimy Hyundai Ioniq 5 on an unusually wet and gray day in Southern California.

Enlarge / A slightly grimy Hyundai Ioniq 5 on an unusually wet and gray day in Southern California. (credit: Jonathan Gitlin)

The car I've been most excited about in 2021 is the Hyundai Ioniq 5. The Korean automaker has impressed with each new model we've tried, and its smaller electric vehicles are some of the few that can rival Tesla in terms of range efficiency.

The Ioniq 5 is the first product from Hyundai Motor Group—which includes Kia and Genesis—to use the new 800 V E-GMP platform, which was designed from the ground up to produce pure battery EVs. I spent a day driving one last week, but I can't say more about that until later this week. What I can tell you, now that Hyundai has finalized pricing, is how much the Ioniq 5 will cost.

The cheapest way to get an Ioniq 5 will be the 125 kW (168 hp) rear-wheel drive SE Standard Range model with the smaller 58 kWh battery pack. This will cost $39,700 before the IRS 30D tax credit and any local incentives. However, as is nearly always the case with a new car regardless of OEM, if you want the cheapest one, you need to be prepared to wait, as it will only become available in spring 2022. (That is still an improvement over Hyundai's original plan of not bringing the car to the US at all.)

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$25 Red Ring of Death poster commemorates Microsoft’s billion-dollar Xbox screw-up

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 1:15pm
$25 Red Ring of Death poster commemorates Microsoft’s billion-dollar Xbox screw-up

Enlarge (credit: Microsoft)

If comedy equals tragedy plus time, this one is hilarious: Microsoft is now selling $25 "premium posters" to commemorate the "Red Ring of Death," a systemic hardware failure in early Xbox 360 consoles that cost the company over $1 billion to fix.

It may be a funny story a decade and a half after the fact, but in mid-2007, the RRoD error was incredibly expensive and damaging for the then-young console and brand. Microsoft's stopgap solution to the problem was a three-year warranty extension that was said to cost between $1.05 and $1.15 billion dollars (closer to $1.5 billion in today's dollars). The red-ring error was caused by heat issues and "a badly designed graphics chip," and it wasn't fully addressed until late 2008, when a new console revision with a redesigned motherboard and cooler-running chips was released.

In an interview in 2015, then-Microsoft VP Peter Moore said that the warranty extension, while expensive, was a "Tylenol moment" that helped the company prevent irreparable damage to the Xbox brand. He also credited then-CEO Steve Ballmer with the decision to spend more than $1 billion to fix the problem—"I always remember $240 million of that was FedEx," he said. "Their stock must have gone through the roof for the next two weeks."

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Woman lost @metaverse Instagram handle days after Facebook name change

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 12:39pm
Woman lost @metaverse Instagram handle days after Facebook name change

Enlarge (credit: Liu Guanguan/China News Service)

Thea-Mai Baumann had posted to Instagram using the @metaverse handle for nearly a decade when her account was disabled on November 2.

“Your account has been blocked for pretending to be someone else,” the app told her. 

Baumann wasn’t exactly sure what had happened, but the timing was curious. The account block came just days after Facebook had announced its new name, Meta. CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the name reflected the company’s new focus on its vision of the metaverse, a virtual world meant to facilitate commerce, communication, and more. Baumann’s @metaverse handle was suddenly a hot commodity.

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Sony offers official PS5 faceplate colors after pushing out competition

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 12:30pm

The faceplate trailer you've been waiting for.

After decades of purely black consoles, the PS5 stood out upon release for its use of striking, white faceplates. Now, more than a year after release, Sony is announcing a line of replacement faceplates in black and four other colors, alongside matching colored DualSense controllers.

The console covers are listed for $55 on the PlayStation Direct shop and come in options fitted for both the standard console and the disc drive-free Digital Edition. Colored controller options are listed for $75, a small premium over the $70 white DualSense controller.

The new console covers, announced this morning, will arrive in 23 countries in two waves. "Midnight Black" and "Cosmic Red" colors will be released starting on January 21, 2022, and "Nova Pink," "Galactic Purple," and "Starlight Blue" will follow in the first half of 2022. Each console cover can be removed and replaced easily without tools, as outlined on the PlayStation site (and this old teardown video).

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As Log4Shell wreaks havoc, payroll service reports ransomware attack

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 11:36am
As Log4Shell wreaks havoc, payroll service reports ransomware attack

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images)

As the world is beset by Log4Shell, arguably the most severe vulnerability ever, one of the biggest human resources solutions providers is reporting a ransomware attack that has taken its systems offline, possibly for the next several weeks. So far, the company isn't saying if that critical vulnerability was the means hackers used to breach the systems.

The company said on Sunday that services using the Kronos Private Cloud had been unavailable for the past day, with the attack taking down Kronos' UKG Workforce Central, UKG TeleStaff, and Banking Scheduling Solutions services.

“At this time, we still do not have an estimated restoration time, and it is likely that the issue may require at least several days to resolve,” Kronos representative Leo Daley wrote. “We continue to recommend that our impacted customers evaluate alternative plans to process time and attendance data for payroll processing, to manage schedules, and to manage other related operations important to their organization.”

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Toyota owners have to pay $8/mo to keep using their key fob for remote start

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 10:06am
Without a subscription, Toyota's RF key fob loses functionality.

Enlarge / Without a subscription, Toyota's RF key fob loses functionality. (credit: George Frey/Bloomberg)

Automakers keep trying to get a piece of that sweet, sweet subscription income. Now, it’s Toyota’s turn.

Nearly every car company offers some sort of subscription package, and Toyota has one called Remote Connect. The service offers the usual fare, letting owners use an app to remotely lock their doors, for example, or if they own a plug-in vehicle, to precondition the interior. But as some complimentary subscriptions for Remote Connect come to an end, Toyota owners are getting an unexpected surprise—they can no longer use their key fob to remote-start their vehicles.

In terms of technology, this remote-start feature is no different from using the fob to unlock the car. The fobs use a short-range radio transmitter to send the car a signal that is encrypted with rolling codes. The car then decrypts the signal and performs the requested action, whether it's to lock or unlock the doors, beep the horn, or start the engine. RF key fobs have been around since the 1980s, and GM added a factory-installed remote-start option in 2004 (no subscription needed).

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This little piggy doesn’t like heat and low barometric pressure

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 9:18am
This little piggy doesn’t like heat and low barometric pressure

Enlarge (credit: Frank Sommariva)

Pigs have a long and illustrious history in North America. According to the University of Mississippi, they were initially introduced to the continent from Europe in the 1500s. In the 1900s, the Eurasian wild boar was also introduced. Over the years, escapee pigs and the introduced boars interbred, creating a nuisance: wild hogs.

These hogs have captured the imagination of the US. In 2019, a tweet asking a “[l]egit question for rural Americans” went viral. The question: “How do I kill the 30-50 feral hogs that run into my yard within 3-5 mins while my small kids play[?]” There was even a TV show, called American Hoggers, about hunting these pigs, and it ran for four seasons starting in 2011. One of its stars, Dean Campbell, passed away over the summer. A small industry offering the experience of a lifetime—i.e. shooting hogs from a helicopter—also sprang up. If this seems somewhat macabre, it’s worth noting that feral pigs can cause $1.5 billion in damages in the US each year—though it’s hard to say if this makes using assault weaponry against them any less gruesome.

At any rate, new research suggests that by using temperature and terrain, we can anticipate where these hogs are more likely to trot as they continue expanding across the continent. According to Lindsay Clontz, one of the paper’s authors and a University of Georgia masters’ graduate in forestry and natural resources, this could help the US manage the damage more effectively.

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Analogue Pocket review: The greatest Game Boy ever made

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 9:00am
Analogue Pocket handheld game system posed in an outdoor scene

Enlarge / Analogue Pocket, running The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening in its Game Boy Color mode. (credit: Sam Machkovech)

The Analogue Pocket is a dream of a gaming device, and it begins shipping to preorder customers this week. It's the most powerful, beautiful, and feature-rich system to revolve around the original Game Boy—and it has earned its mountain of pre-release hype. The Pocket supports any game cartridge with the words "Game Boy" on the label (including GB Color and GB Advance games), while cartridge adapters allow it to play other companies' portable games. That combination of features makes Analogue's latest product a wholly unique portable retro-gaming option—and for the most part, the manufacturer has nailed its execution.

But the Pocket is also a first-generation gadget. Its makers have never released a portable system before, which means that fans of the company's previous TV-centric retro systems (like the Super Nt and Mega Sg) might wonder what they're in for. Is the Pocket another slam-dunk—or does it have enough issues to merit waiting for an eventual system refresh?

Having now tested the Analogue Pocket for a whopping three weeks, I can say that the answer depends. If you bought during the system's painfully brief preorder window late last year, don't fret: your $199 purchase is an insane value. (For all future orders, the price is now $20 higher at $219.) If you didn't buy yet, you can soften your FOMO with the knowledge that there are a few rough edges—and that an eventual Pocket 2.0 could make a great system even better.

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It’s time for “electronic gravel traps” to save F1 from itself

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 8:52am
A painted curb at a race track, with a gravel trap immediately to its left

Enlarge / Track-edging red, white, and green painted curbs at the exit of the Variante Della Roggia chicane next to the gravel trap during practice for the 2012 Italian Grand Prix on the Monza Circuit, Italy.

On Sunday, under floodlights in Abu Dhabi, the 2021 Formula 1 season came to an end. The most electrifying championship fight in many years came down to a last-lap pass after a dominant Lewis Hamilton got caught out on old tires after a very late caution let rival Max Verstappen pit for much fresher rubber.

Partially due to Netflix's Drive to Survive show, the sport has reached levels of popularity not seen since the 1980s, even here in America, so many people have opinions about the role that F1's race control officials have had in influencing the title fight.

However, I'm not here today to dissect the confusion of the last five laps. Instead, I have a bee in my bonnet about an incident that could have decided the championship that happened just a third of the way around lap 1.

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With further delays to BE-4 rocket engine, Vulcan may not make 2022 debut

ArsTechnica - Mon, 12/13/2021 - 7:56am
A full-power test of the BE-4 rocket engine in April 2019 in West Texas.

Enlarge / A full-power test of the BE-4 rocket engine in April 2019 in West Texas. (credit: Blue Origin)

Blue Origin is unlikely to deliver two flight-ready versions of the BE-4 rocket engine to United Launch Alliance (ULA) before at least the second quarter of 2022, two sources say. This increases the possibility that the debut flight of ULA's much-anticipated new rocket, Vulcan, could slip into 2023.

Vulcan's first stage is powered by two BE-4 engines, which burn methane and are more powerful than the space shuttle's main engines. The sources said there recently was a "relatively small" production issue with fabrication of the flight engines at Blue Origin's factory in Kent, Washington.

As a result of this, the engines will not be completed and shipped to the company's test stands in West Texas until next year. Once there, each engine must be unpacked, tested, and then re-configured to be moved to ULA's rocket assembly facility in northern Alabama. A reasonable "no-earlier-than" date for the engines' arrival at the rocket manufacturer is now April 2022, and this assumes a smooth final production and testing phase.

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