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.

EFF praises Android’s new 2G kill switch, wants Apple to follow suit

ArsTechnica - Fri, 01/14/2022 - 11:35am
Stock photo of skull and crossbones on a smartphone screen.

Enlarge / This phone is receiving a 2G signal. (credit: Getty Images)

The Electronic Frontier Foundation is celebrating Google's addition of a 2G kill switch to Android 12. The digital rights group has been campaigning against the dated, insecure 2G cellular standard since 2020, and Android is the first mobile OS to take the group's advice and let users completely disable 2G.

In the US, carriers shut down 2G years ago, and the 3G shutdown is already underway. Phones have not really gotten the message, though, and modems still try to connect to any nearby 2G signals automatically. The problem is that 2G is very old, and it's a lot like connecting to a WEP-secured Wi-Fi hotspot—the security is obsolete, so it's easy to crack. If you're in a country where legitimate uses of 2G are long dead, the standard only serves as an attack vector via fake cell phone towers, so why not just shut it off?

The EFF explains the issues:

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Microsoft Teams turns your phone into a walkie-talkie

ArsTechnica - Fri, 01/14/2022 - 11:08am
Microsoft Teams turns your phone into a walkie-talkie

Enlarge (credit: Getty)

One of the hallmarks of Boost Mobile prepaid phones in the early 2000s was their push-to-talk (PTT), or walkie-talkie, feature, which allowed you to play your voice through another Boost Mobile user's phone speaker with the push of a button. Microsoft is now bringing a similar feature to iOS and Android devices via its Teams app. However, Microsoft isn't using rappers and athletes to try to make PTT seem "cool," as Boost Mobile did. Instead, the company is positioning the feature as a way to use technology to aid frontline workers.

In a blog post on Wednesday, Emma Williams, corporate VP of modern work transformation at Microsoft, announced that the walkie-talkie ability in Teams is now available "on all iOS mobile devices, such as iPhones and iPads, in addition to Android mobile devices."

Williams also said the feature will come to some Zebra Technologies devices, such as rugged phones or scanning devices. Such products may even have a button you can press to connect instantly, just like real walkie-talkies and Boost Mobile's old PTT phones.

Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

PUBG maker sues mobile clone, Apple, Google for copyright infringement

ArsTechnica - Fri, 01/14/2022 - 10:45am
Screenshot comparisons like these do make <em>Free Fire</em> look very similar to <em>PUBG</em>.

Enlarge / Screenshot comparisons like these do make Free Fire look very similar to PUBG.

Shortly after the 2017 release of PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG), creator Brendan Greene publicly aired his exasperation at just how many developers were releasing shameless clones of the game's then-unique battle royale concept and how hard it was to stop those copycats. Now, PUBG's Korean publisher Krafton has filed a lawsuit against one PUBG clone it says has engaged in "rampant, willful copyright infringement" of the popular game.

In the lawsuit, Krafton alleges that mobile hits Free Fire and Free Fire Max "extensively copy numerous aspects of Battlegrounds, both individually and in combination." Those games attracted over 100 million daily users at the end of 2020, according to the lawsuit, and brought in the majority of Singaporean publisher Garena's more than $2 billion in revenue for that year.

Krafton also makes Apple and Google party to the suit for listing the infringing game in their mobile app stores and for ignoring a recent request to take them down. In addition, Google is allegedly liable for hosting YouTube videos showing Free Fire's infringing gameplay on its service.

Read 10 remaining paragraphs | Comments

PayPal stole users’ money after freezing, seizing funds, lawsuit alleges

ArsTechnica - Fri, 01/14/2022 - 10:24am
PayPal stole users’ money after freezing, seizing funds, lawsuit alleges

Enlarge (credit: Thomas Trutschel/Photothek)

PayPal is facing a class-action lawsuit alleging that the digital payments company violated racketeering laws by freezing customer funds without offering an explanation.

When users contacted PayPal about the frozen funds, they were told they had violated the company’s “acceptable use policy” but weren’t told how that violation had occurred, the lawsuit says. What’s more, it alleges that in at least one instance, PayPal said that a user would “have to get a subpoena” to find out why.

“PayPal violates its own Agreement by failing to provide adequate notice to users whose accounts have had holds placed on them,” the lawsuit says. When PayPal does let users know it placed a hold on their funds, “it does not inform such users why such funds are being held, how they can obtain a release of the hold, and/or how they can avoid future holds being placed on their accounts.”

Read 10 remaining paragraphs | Comments

We don’t know why, but being in space causes us to destroy our blood

ArsTechnica - Fri, 01/14/2022 - 9:00am
We don’t know why, but being in space causes us to destroy our blood

Enlarge (credit: NASA)

Space isn’t easy on humans. Some aspects are avoidable—the vacuum, of course, and the cold, as well as some of the radiation. Astronauts can also lose bone density, thanks to a lack of gravity. NASA has even created a fun acronym for the issues: RIDGE, which stands for space radiation, isolation and confinement, distance from Earth, gravity fields, and hostile and closed environments.

New research adds to the worries by describing how being in space destroys your blood. Or rather, something about space—and we don’t know what just yet—causes the human body to perform hemolysis at a higher rate than back on Earth.

This phenomenon, called space anemia, has been well-studied. It’s part of a suite of problems that astronauts face when they come back to terra firma, which is how Guy Trudel—one of the paper’s authors and a specialist in physical medicine and rehabilitation at The Ottawa Hospital—got involved. “[W]hen the astronauts return from space, they are very much like the patients we admit in rehab,” he told Ars.

Read 10 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Ukraine says government websites hit by “massive cyber attack”

ArsTechnica - Fri, 01/14/2022 - 8:55am
A Ukrainian Military Forces serviceman watches through a spyglass in a trench on the frontline with Russia-backed separatists near Avdiivka, southeastern Ukraine, on January 9, 2022.

Enlarge / A Ukrainian Military Forces serviceman watches through a spyglass in a trench on the frontline with Russia-backed separatists near Avdiivka, southeastern Ukraine, on January 9, 2022. (credit: Anatolii Stepanov | Getty Images)

Ukraine said it was the target of a “massive cyber attack” after about 70 government websites ceased functioning.

On Friday morning targets included websites of the ministerial cabinet, the foreign, education, agriculture, emergency, energy, veterans affairs, and environment ministries. Also out of service were the websites of the state treasury and the Diia electronic public services platform, where vaccination certificates and electronic passports are stored.

“Ukrainians! All your personal data has been uploaded to the public network,” read a message temporarily posted on the foreign ministry’s website. “All data on your computer is being erased and won’t be recoverable. All information about you has become public, fear and expect the worst.”

Read 20 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Rocket Report: Neutron may land in Virginia; it’s to be Starship for Starlink

ArsTechnica - Fri, 01/14/2022 - 5:00am
Grainy photograph of smoke-haloed rocket.

Enlarge / SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket is seen returning to Earth after its 10th flight to space. (credit: Trevor Mahlmann / Ars Technica)

Welcome to Edition 4.28 of the Rocket Report! As I write this introduction, I'm watching Virgin Orbit's livestream for its "Above the Clouds" mission, and the company's LauncherOne vehicle has successfully reached orbit. All systems appeared to be nominal through stage separation, with great views from the rocket as the payload fairing broke away. This makes three successful missions in a row for the company after an initial failure in May 2020—pretty darn impressive.

As always, we welcome reader submissions, and if you don't want to miss an issue, please subscribe using the box below (the form will not appear on AMP-enabled versions of the site). Each report will include information on small-, medium-, and heavy-lift rockets as well as a quick look ahead at the next three launches on the calendar.

A short's take on Astra is brutal. When space companies go public, they can often raise a lot of capital, quickly. But going the route of a Special Purpose Acquisition Company also opens a company's record and financials up to much greater scrutiny. Part of the process, too, allows traders to "short" a stock by betting that its value will fall. For Astra Space, one of the financial firms shorting the stock is Kerrisdale Capital, which recently published its rationale for doing so in a report titled Headed for Dis-Astra.

Read 22 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Humble subscription service is dumping Mac, Linux access in 18 days

ArsTechnica - Fri, 01/14/2022 - 4:00am
Mac, Linux nostalgia will soon be a thing for Humble Choice subscribers.

Enlarge / Mac, Linux nostalgia will soon be a thing for Humble Choice subscribers. (credit: Aurich Lawson | Getty Images)

Humble, the bundle-centric games retailer that launched with expansive Mac and Linux support in 2010, will soon shift a major component of its business to Windows-only gaming.

The retailer's monthly subscription service, Humble Choice, previously offered a number of price tiers; the more you paid, the more new games you could claim in a given month. Starting February 1, Humble Choice will include less choice, as it will only offer a single $12/month tier, complete with a few new game giveaways per month and ongoing access to two collections of games: Humble's existing "Trove" collection of classic games, and a brand-new "Humble Games Collection" of more modern titles.

Launcher cut-off: February 1, 2022

But this shift in subscription strategy comes with a new, unfortunate requirement: an entirely new launcher app, which must be used to access and download Humble Trove and Humble Games Collection games going forward. Worse, this app will be Windows-only. Current subscribers have been given an abrupt countdown warning (as spotted by NeoWin). Those subscribers have until January 31 to use the existing website interface to download DRM-free copies of any games' Mac or Linux versions. Starting February 1, subscription-specific downloads will be taken off the site, and Mac and Linux versions in particular will disappear altogether.

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Raised by Wolves S2 trailer promises another wild, crazy (possibly maddening) ride

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 3:58pm

Amanda Collin returns as Mother in the second season of HBO's original series Raised by Wolves.

We finally have the full trailer for the second season of Raised by Wolves, the visually striking, occasionally frustrating sci-fi series created by Aaron Guzikowski, with Ridley Scott serving as executive producer. The series returns to HBO Max on February 3.

(Spoilers for S1 below.)

As I've written previously, the series involves two androids serving as Mother (Amanda Collin) and Father (Abubakar Salim) figures on a strange virgin planet, Kepler-22b (an actual observed extrasolar planet), after Earth has been destroyed by the outbreak of a religious war. They are programmed to incubate, birth, and raise human children to rebuild the population and set up an atheist civilization to keep the human race from going extinct.

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Android 13 leaks: More Material You options, opt-in to app notifications

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 3:44pm
 More Material You options, opt-in to app notifications

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images)

The very first Android 13 developer previews won't be out until at least March, but that isn't stopping Android 13 leaks from popping up already. Of course, more features will be revealed in the coming months, but Android 13 is already shaping up to be a solid release.

More Material You color options

The headline feature of Android 12 was "Material You," a top-to-bottom redesign and dynamic theming system that automatically changed the UI colors depending on your wallpaper. Set a primarily yellow background and Material You will apply various yellow hues to your app backgrounds, notifications, buttons, icons, and more. I think it looks great, but it might not be for everyone.

Android 13 looks to be expanding on the color system and giving users more options. Android Police's Ryne Hager has screenshots from a prerelease build that show four different theming algorithms to pick from. There is "Tonal Spot," which just seems to be the current Android 12 color system, and then three new color systems called "Vibrant," "Expressive" and "Spritz."

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Comcast trying to “torpedo” Biden FCC pick Gigi Sohn, advocacy group says

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 3:14pm
Gigi Sohn sitting and answering questions posted by US senators at a hearing.

Enlarge / Gigi Sohn answering questions on December 1, 2021, at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on her nomination to the Federal Communications Commission. (credit: Senate Commerce Committee)

Comcast's hiring of a new lobbyist is part of an attempt to "torpedo" President Joe Biden's nomination of Gigi Sohn to the Federal Communications Commission, advocacy group Free Press alleged yesterday.

"Comcast just hired a lobbying firm to try to torpedo Gigi Sohn's nomination to the FCC. The company clearly knows that Sohn will work for people, not corporations," Free Press wrote in an email to members. The email asked people to call Commerce Committee Chair Sen. Maria Cantwell (D–Wash.) to urge a vote on Sohn's nomination by the end of January.

Comcast's newly hired lobbyist is Kirk Adams of Consilium Consulting in Phoenix, Arizona. Adams' lobbying disclosure, which was filed with Congress on January 6, lists one specific lobbying issue that he expects to work on: "FCC nominations." An amended version of the lobbying registration filed about 11 hours later deleted "FCC Nominations" and replaced it with "telecommunications policy."

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New Chrome security measure aims to curtail an entire class of Web attack

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 2:09pm
Extreme close-up photograph of finger above Chrome icon on smartphone.

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images)

For more than a decade, the Internet has remained vulnerable to a class of attacks that uses browsers as a beachhead for accessing routers and other sensitive devices on a targeted network. Now, Google is finally doing something about it.

Starting in Chrome version 98, the browser will begin relaying requests when public websites want to access endpoints inside the private network of the person visiting the site. For the time being, requests that fail won't prevent the connections from happening. Instead, they'll only be logged. Somewhere around Chrome 101—assuming the results of this trial run don't indicate major parts of the Internet will be broken—it will be mandatory for public sites to have explicit permission before they can access endpoints behind the browser.

The planned deprecation of this access comes as Google enables a new specification known as private network access, which permits public websites to access internal network resources only after the sites have explicitly requested it and the browser grants the request. PNA communications are sent using the CORS, or Cross-Origin Resource Sharing, protocol. Under the scheme, the public site sends a preflight request in the form of the new header Access-Control-Request-Private-Network: true. For the request to be granted, the browser must respond with the corresponding header Access-Control-Allow-Private-Network: true.

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Microwave hack replaces flat keypad with mechanical keyboard switches

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 1:42pm

Ever have a microwave with buttons that don't work properly? If you hit the keys at the right angle, maybe the microwave will respond. Or perhaps, no matter how you push them, the microwave stays silent. What if you could fix the issue without calling a repair company—and simultaneously make pressing the microwave's keypad more enjoyable?

Kailh, which makes mechanical keyboard switches, shared a tweet on Tuesday highlighting a use for its switches that the company had never seen before. A Reddit user employed some Kailh Box Blacks to make his microwave usable again.

The Reddit user, who goes by gregschlom, wrote that his 9-year-old microwave started malfunctioning, and instead of settling for cold leftovers and unpopped popcorn kernels until repairs could be done, he hardwired the device to Box Black switches. Based on the shared image, the new switches can be used to add 30 seconds, add a minute, cancel the operation, and access the settings menu.

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A very common virus may be the trigger for multiple sclerosis

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 1:09pm
This photomicrograph depicts leukemia cells that contain Epstein Barr virus using an FA staining technique, 1972. Epstein-Barr virus, EBV, is a member of the Herpesvirus family and is one of the most common human viruses.

Enlarge / This photomicrograph depicts leukemia cells that contain Epstein Barr virus using an FA staining technique, 1972. Epstein-Barr virus, EBV, is a member of the Herpesvirus family and is one of the most common human viruses. (credit: Getty | CDC)

Evidence is mounting that the garden-variety virus that sometimes causes mono in teens is the underlying cause of multiple sclerosis, a rare neurological disease in which the immune system attacks the brain and spinal cord, stripping away protective insulation around nerve cells, called myelin.

It's still unclear how exactly the virus—the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)—may trigger MS and why MS develops in a tiny fraction of people. About 95 percent of adults have been infected with EBV, which often strikes in childhood. MS, meanwhile, often develops between the ages of 20 and 40 and is estimated to affect around one million people in the US. Yet, years of evidence have consistently pointed to links between the childhood virus and the chronic demyelinating disease later in life.

With a study published today in Science, the link is stronger than ever, and outside experts say the new findings offer further "compelling" evidence that EBV isn't just connected to MS; it's an essential trigger for the disease. The study found, among other things, that people had a 32-fold increase in risk of developing MS following an EBV infection in early adulthood.

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Supreme Court on vaccine mandates: Hospitals OK, general employment a “no”

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 12:57pm
Statuary and facade outside neoclassical federal building.

(credit: Getty Images)

The Biden administration has made vaccine mandates central to its attempts to limit the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Or at least it has tried to; various states and other organizations have used the courts to challenge the federal government's authority to impose these mandates. Last week, the Supreme Court heard arguments regarding two of the most significant mandates: one for all hospital workers issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and a second for all employees of large companies issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

By the time the cases were argued before the Supreme Court, the HHS rule was already blocked by a stay issued by a lower court. By contrast, the OSHA rules had seen a lower court lift earlier stays, leaving it on the verge of enforcement.

On Thursday, the Supreme Court issued expedited rules that reflected the tone of the questioning the week before. The OSHA rule is now subject to a stay that blocks its implementation, a decision that saw the court's three liberal justices issue a dissent. The stay against the HHS rules was lifted, but only by a close 5-4 ruling.

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2021 obeyed physics, was one of the warmest years on record

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 12:46pm
2021 obeyed physics, was one of the warmest years on record

Enlarge (credit: NOAA)

We are still in the midst of running a dangerous experiment on Earth’s climate system, and we get to periodically check in on the results—like laboratory rats peering at the graphs on a whiteboard across the room. And it’s that time again.

Every year, global temperature can be compared to the predictions born of the physics of greenhouse gases. A number of groups around the world maintain global surface temperature datasets. Because of their slightly differing methods for calculating the global average and slightly differing sets of temperature measurements fed into that calculation, these datasets don’t always arrive at exactly the same answer. Lean in close enough and you’ll see differences in the data points, which can translate into differences in their respective rankings of the warmest years. The big picture, on the other hand, looks exactly the same across them.

NASA, NOAA, and the Berkeley Earth group each released their end-of-year data for 2021 today, while the Japanese Meteorological Agency (JMA) and European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) numbers were already out. They all came up with similar rankings this year. All but ECMWF placed it as the sixth warmest year on record, while ECMWF ranked it in fifth place. It was very close to 2015 and 2018, so fifth through seventh are roughly tied. What is true for all of the datasets is that the last seven years are the warmest seven years on record.

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Ancient Peruvians partied hard, spiked their beer with hallucinogens to win friends

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 12:02pm
A vessel from the Wari site of Conchopata features the tree and its tell-tale seed pods sprouting from the head of the Staff God.

Enlarge / A vessel from the Wari site of Conchopata features the tree and its tell-tale seed pods sprouting from the head of the Staff God. (credit: J. Ochatoma Paravicino/M.E. Biwer et al., 2022)

Lacing the beer served at their feasts with hallucinogens may have helped an ancient Peruvian people known as the Wari forge political alliances and expand their empire, according to a new paper published in the journal Antiquity. Recent excavations at a remote Wari outpost called Quilcapampa unearthed seeds from the vilca tree that can be used to produce a potent hallucinogenic drug. The authors think the Wari held one big final blowout before the site was abandoned.

“This is, to my knowledge, the first finding of vilca at a Wari site where we can get a glimpse of its use,” co-author Matthew Biwer, an archaeobotanist at Dickinson College, told Gizmodo. “Vilca seeds or residue has been found in burial tombs before, but we could only assume how it was used. These findings point to a more nuanced understanding of Wari feasting and politics and how vilca was implicated in these practices.”

The Wari empire lasted from around 500 CE to 1100 CE in the central highlands of Peru. There is some debate among scholars as to whether the network of roadways linking various provincial cities constituted a bona fide empire as opposed to a loose economic network. But the Wari's construction of complex, distinctive architecture and the 2013 discovery of an imperial royal tomb lend credence to the Wari's empire status. The culture began to decline around 800 CE, largely due to drought. Many central buildings were blocked up, suggesting people thought they might return if the rains did, and there is archaeological evidence of possible warfare and raiding in the empire's final days as the local infrastructure collapsed and supply chains failed.

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One of Nintendo Switch’s best puzzle games is now (mostly) free for 7 days

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 11:00am
Usually, NSO trials like this feel like teasers for full-price purchases. This one is different.

Enlarge / Usually, NSO trials like this feel like teasers for full-price purchases. This one is different. (credit: Nintendo of America)

Nintendo mixes cool, weird, and ho-hum perks into its $20/year Switch Online subscription service, including one we don't generally talk about: limited-time game trials. Other modern gaming services include this sort of thing, particularly "Days With Gold" on Xbox Live, and the idea is that subscribers can temporarily test unlocked retail versions of games for no additional cost.

Generally, these deals range from intriguing to annoying, though they're at their worst when they feel like glorified advertisements for online games: Try a game for as little as 72 hours, get hooked, then buy it when the promotional timer runs out and locks the game. This week, however, a new deal exclusively for Nintendo Switch Online subscribers gets my wholehearted recommendation.

Starting right now—as of 1 pm EST today, January 13—the 2019 Switch puzzle game Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker is fully unlocked for anyone already paying for the $20/year NSO service. Its free trial lasts for a little over seven days, expiring at 2:59 am EST on Friday, January 21.

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Holmes to face maximum of 80 years in prison when she’s sentenced in September

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 10:44am
Theranos founder and former CEO Elizabeth Holmes leaves the Robert F. Peckham Federal Building in San Jose, California, on December 17, 2021.

Enlarge / Theranos founder and former CEO Elizabeth Holmes leaves the Robert F. Peckham Federal Building in San Jose, California, on December 17, 2021. (credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Elizabeth Holmes’ trial was delayed for months, and now her sentencing will be similarly held up. The judge in her trial scheduled the hearing for late September.

US District Judge Edward Davila’s order, issued yesterday, set sentencing for September 26. He also set aside June 16 to address motions that Holmes’ attorneys are likely to file in which they may ask for the conviction to be reversed or for a new trial.

Holmes was convicted earlier this month of three counts of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The jury was hung on three counts, which prosecutors moved to dismiss in a filing made jointly with Holmes’ attorneys. The former CEO of Theranos was acquitted of the remaining charges of wire fraud against patients.

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Decade-old volume indicator gets a new look in latest Windows 11 preview

ArsTechnica - Thu, 01/13/2022 - 9:59am
The humble volume indicator, reimagined for Windows 11.

Enlarge / The humble volume indicator, reimagined for Windows 11. (credit: Andrew Cunningham)

Improving Windows 11's visual and functional consistency is shaping up to be a major priority for Microsoft this year, as evinced by the continued updates to core apps like Notepad, Paint, and Media Player, as well as the ongoing effort to move advanced settings out of the old Windows 7-era Control Panels and into the modern Settings app. Restoring some flexibility to redesigned areas of the OS like the Start menu and Taskbar has also been a focus.

The latest Windows 11 Insider build released to Dev channel users continues this work, updating the overlays for volume, brightness, and other settings to match Windows 11's more rounded look. The new indicators pop up in the bottom center of your screen rather than the top left, they will respect your light or dark mode setting, and, like the Start menu and taskbar, they use Mica styling to match the color of your desktop wallpaper.

The other changes in this preview build are pretty small; "Apps and Features" in the Windows + X shortcut menu has been relabeled as "Installed apps," the Voice Access accessibility feature can be pinned to the Taskbar and Start menu, and the Clock app can be uninstalled. Exciting times!

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