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Updated: 32 min 20 sec ago

Julian Assange remains silent on extradition promise

46 min 6 sec ago

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange welcomed President Obama’s decision to commute the prison sentence of Chelsea Manning on Thursday, but it is not clear whether he will agree to extradition to the US, as WikiLeaks previously said. "Ms. Manning is a hero, whose bravery should be applauded," Assange said in the statement released Tuesday. "Journalists, publishers, and their sources serve the public interest and promote democracy by distributing authentic information on key matters such as human rights abuses and illegal acts by government officials.

Tesla will also make Model 3 motors at its Nevada Gigafactory

1 hour 5 min ago

The production of lithium-ion battery cells began at Tesla’s massive Nevada Gigafactory earlier this month, but in the future, the factory will make more than just batteries. As announced by Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval last night, and reported by Fortune and the Reno Gazette-Journal, Tesla is adding production for electric motors and gearbox components for its mass-market Model 3 sedan to the factory.

Fret not Vine fans, Twitter now looping short videos

2 hours 5 min ago

Vine may be dead, but parent company Twitter has developed a new feature that mimics the short-looping video experience.

Facebook's Zuckerberg questioned at trial over virtual-reality technology

2 hours 48 min ago

By Lisa Maria Garza DALLAS (Reuters) - Facebook Inc chief executive Mark Zuckerberg took the witness stand in Dallas federal court on Tuesday and denied an allegation by a rival company that the virtual-reality technology of Facebook's Oculus unit was stolen. Zuckerberg, the founder of one of the world's largest companies, faced hours of tough, public questioning about where Oculus obtained its ideas and how much he knew about the startup when Facebook bought it for $2 billion. A jury is hearing evidence in a civil lawsuit brought by videogame publisher ZeniMax Media Inc against Oculus in 2014, in the middle of the Facebook-Oculus deal.

CIA puts almost 12 million declassified files online for the first time

3 hours 49 min ago

The CIA has put almost 12 million pages of its records online, allowing anyone with an internet connection to browse 50 years worth of declassified intelligence reports, briefings, and other once-secret documents. Then-president Bill Clinton ordered the CIA to declassify secret documents that were more than 25 years old and of "historical value" in 1995, but the Agency didn't make the archives searchable until 2000. The database is known as CREST (CIA Records Search Tool), and making it available online has long been a target of journalists, academics, and researchers.

For driverless cars, a moral dilemma: Who lives or dies?

4 hours 31 min ago

Imagine you're behind the wheel when your brakes fail. As you speed toward a crowded crosswalk, you're confronted with an impossible choice: veer right and mow down a large group of elderly people, or ...

Toshiba in talks to sell chip business stake to Western Digital: source

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 23:13

Toshiba Corp is in talks to sell a minority stake in its flash memory business to U.S. chips business partner Western Digital Corp in a bid to boost its capital base, a source briefed on the discussions said on Wednesday. Toshiba said in a statement earlier that it had been considering various options for its memory business, including a spin-off, but that nothing concrete had been decided. California-based data storage company Western Digital operates a NAND flash memory plant in the city of Yokkaichi in Mie prefecture with Toshiba.

Japanese toilet industry agrees to standardize complex bidet controls

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 22:33

The Japan Sanitary Equipment Industry Association, a consortium of companies producing plumbing products including Toto, Panasonic, and Toshiba, has agreed to unify the iconography used on the often baffling control panels for Japanese toilets. The toilet manufacturers plan to implement the eight new pictogram on models released from this year onward, with a view to the system becoming an international standard. Much of Japan is currently engaged in a rush to make itself more welcoming to tourists ahead of the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, and icon design has often been at the forefront of debate.

Something in space is killing off entire galaxies

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 22:10
When we think about the survival of the human race we often focus on making sure our planet stays alive and habitable, but out there in the depths of space there are entire galaxies being killed off in a manner that is utterly perplexing scientists. A new paper ( PDF ) from researchers working at the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research addresses the odd and extremely troubling trend and attempts to propose an answer for what exactly is leading literally thousands of galaxies to die premature deaths. After studying a whopping 11,000 galaxies in the general vicinity of our own, scientists now believe that a process called ram-pressure stripping is leading the ailing galaxies to be purged of their gas, preventing new stars from forming and leading them to sputter out far faster than would be expected. Without adequate gas to power new star formation, the galaxies simply get cold and die. “During their lifetimes, galaxies can inhabit halos of different sizes, ranging from masses typical of our own Milky Way to halos thousands of times more massive,” Toby Brown, the PhD candidate who headed the study, explains on the organization's website. “As galaxies fall through these larger halos, the superheated intergalactic plasma between them removes their gas in a fast-acting process called ram-pressure stripping." “You can think of it like a giant cosmic broom that comes through and physically sweeps the gas from the galaxies," Brown says. “If you remove the fuel for star formation then you effectively kill the galaxy and turn it into a dead object.” It's a disturbing notion, but there's good(ish) news; the process can take tens of millions of years to actually occur, so even if you were living in a galaxy where ram-pressure stripping was occurring, you'd be long dead before it could actually affect you in any way. That's reassuring... right?

Samsung chief questioned behind closed doors in arrest warrant hearing

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 21:34

A South Korean judge questioned Samsung Group leader Jay Y. Lee behind closed doors on Wednesday to decide whether he should be arrested over his alleged role in a corruption scandal that led parliament to impeach President Park Geun-hye. Lee, 48, in dark overcoat and purple necktie, did not answer questions from reporters on his way into the special prosecutor's office and then the Seoul Central District Court, where guards stopped journalists at the door. A special prosecutor on Monday said it would seek a warrant to arrest the third-generation leader of the country's largest conglomerate on suspicion of bribery, embezzlement and perjury.

Google’s Pixel is still the hottest Android phone in town

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 21:06
Google’s pair of Pixel phones is a remarkable success for the company. Sure, they may have some flaws , but they’re still the hottest Android devices in town — if you can get one. A new report indicates that Pixel “demand is exceeding supply” at Verizon. Big Red is still the only US carrier selling Google’s Pixel and Pixel XL smartphone, and the investment has been paying off for the company. Verizon committed a $25 million marketing budget for the phone after its launch and continues to promote the phone, although spending has cooled. According to Fierce Wireless , Wave7 Research data shows that the Pixel phones remained hot-selling devices even after the holidays. “Along with Apple, Samsung, and Droid, the Pixel/XL continues to be heavily advertised—on an equal footing with top OEMs—at a price point of $10 (Pixel) or $15 (XL) per month with trade-in of a high-end smartphone,” the firm noted. “It is clear that demand is exceeding supply.” The firm conducted a survey of 50 carrier stores last week, concluding that the Pixel accounted for 9.5% of smartphone sales at Verizon last month. And it’s not just Verizon subscribers that are buying the phone. The Pixel and Pixel XL can be used with other US carriers, and T-Mobile specifically targeted the handsets with a promotion not too long ago. “AT AT&T/T-Mobile/Sprint stores, 39% of reps (13 of 33) are aware of an average of ~2 Pixel activations each at these 13 stores,” Wave7 Research wrote. “Most Pixel XL SKUs are shipping in March and most Pixel SKUs are out of stock as well.” Comparatively, the iPhone 7 remained strong, Wave7 said, as the iPhone’s share of sales was up at every carrier other than Sprint. The iPhone 7 is slightly outselling the iPhone 7 Plus, the research company noted. “Sales of the iPhone 7 exceeded sales of the iPhone 7 Plus at all four carriers, but the gap narrowed significantly from prior months, now that iPhone 7 Plus supply is greatly improved,” Wave7 said.

Yahoo Japan defies calls to rethink ivory sales as Yahoo Inc CEO weighs in

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 21:05

By Yoshiyasu Shida and Deborah M. Todd TOKYO/SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Yahoo Japan, the country's biggest online auction site, is rebuffing calls to end online ivory trading despite Yahoo Inc CEO Marissa Mayer's misgivings over facilitating a business blamed for the illegal slaughter of African elephants. Yahoo Japan doesn't accept that ivory sold on its platform - supposedly imported into Japan before a 1989 ban on international shipments - is a factor behind the sharp rise in poaching on the African savannah in recent years. Dismissing animal rights campaigners' concerns, even though the ivory business contributes a fraction of its sales, Yahoo Japan also argues that so long as no laws are broken people should be able to trade whatever they like on the internet.

Apple fans, let your freak flag fly

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 20:30
The Jony Ive-narrated introductory video for the Apple Pencil is without question the most cringeworthy video Apple has ever produced. Seriously, it’s like a parody of an Apple video produced by Apple. Watch it again right here if you don't remember it. Ive speaks with such passion, diving deep into the intricate details and the magic behind the creation of… a friggin stylus. Sure, it’s a nice stylus, but at the end of the day it’s still… a friggin stylus. If you own an Apple Pencil, you’re obviously comfortable with buying into pretty much anything Apple’s selling (jk, jk, it’s so awesome!!), so why not let the world know? The TechMatte Apple Pencil Charging Stand will let you display your sweet Apple Pencil proudly on your desk for all the world to see. Some highlights from the product page: TechMatte Apple Pencil Stand allows you to charge your pencil while still looking stylish and sleek on your desk. The stand's charging dock comes with the proper cable to charge your Apple Pencil built into the stand. Holds both your pencil and cap Easy to use and durable Made of solid aluminum

Low-cost Android One phones reportedly coming to the US

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 20:18

Google’s Android One platform was originally designed to provide low-cost Android devices to developing markets without the stuff that usually comes with low-cost Android devices: bloatware, competing services, and a crippling lack of software and security updates. Android One phones have historically been produced by companies you probably haven’t heard of, like Micromax, Cherry, and QMobile. Originally Google had a direct hand in detailing what components would go into the phone, but apparently became more flexible over time and eventually expanded the program beyond India to parts of Africa, Spain, and Portugal.

Orlando nightclubs deploy radar technology to detect weapons

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 19:51
Some nightclubs in Orlando are looking to deploy radar-based weapons detection technology in the aftermath of last year's deadly mass shooting at gay nightclub Pulse. Weapons detection specialist Patriot One Technologies announced on Tuesday that it is partnering with VGroup Concepts to launch a ‘Safe Districts’ initiative. VGroup Concepts is a management company of several restaurants and clubs in Orlando. ORLANDO NIGHTCLUB ATTACKER'S WIFE COULD FACE LIFE IN PRISON ON NEW CHARGES Pulse was targeted in a deadly attack on June 12, 2016, when a gunman opened fire, killing 49 club goers and wounding 53 more. A major challenge for locations such as schools, clubs and stadiums, is that they often have limited seurity, making them ‘soft targets,’ according to Patriot One Technologies. The partnership with VGroup Concepts aims to boost safety at Orlando venues via the company's NForce CMR 1000 detection system. OLD-SCHOOL SECURITY GOES MODERN: BENJILOCK BRINGS FINGERPRINT TECH TO THE PADLOCK The NForce CMR 1000 can be installed in hallways and doorways. It uses microwave radar technology to detect concealed metal. Once detected, the metallic content is sent to a database and analyzed against known guns, knives, suicide vests and other weapons. If the material is found to be threatening, security is alerted. Patriot One Technologies CEO Martin Cronin, said in a press release , "Our number-one goal at Patriot One is to offer a solution that works with today's security professionals to help deter, detect and defend against active threats of violence on innocent citizens everywhere.”

Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee is leaving Crackle for Netflix

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 19:38

Jerry Seinfeld is taking his interview web series, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, to Netflix, according to Variety. The move is yet another big get for Netflix, which has been courting high-profile comedians like Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock, Amy Schumer, and Jim Gaffigan to its platform with lucrative contract deals and an ever-growing audience.

Apple might right the sinking MacBook ship this year

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 19:33
Apple’s Mac business will have a terrific 2017, a new report says. Apple is expected to ship some 15 million laptops this year, or 10% more than last year. Apple’s 2016 MacBook Pro is to “blame” for the increased interest in MacBooks. Additionally, Apple’s upcoming 2017 MacBook and MacBook Pro updates should also convince even more users to upgrade. Citing Chinese-language site Economic Daily News , Digitimes says that demand is still rather high for the 2016 MacBook Pro with Touch Bar. The laptop is set to get even better later this year, thanks to processor upgrades to Intel Kaby Lake and support of up to 32GB of RAM. Kaby Lake’s low power consumption is expected “to trigger a replacement trend among existing MacBook users,” according to market watchers. The 2016 13-inch MacBook Pro without a Touch Bar will be even cheaper, as Apple looks to increase overall shipments. The device will replace the 13-inch MacBook Air, the same market watchers claimed. Finally, the 12-inch MacBook is also set to receive an update early in the second quarter of the year. Apple will sell a version of the laptop that packs 16GB of RAM. The Kaby Lake-based 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pros are expected to hit production early in the third quarter, while the 32GB 15-inch MacBook Pro will hit production a quarter later. These details, yet to be confirmed by Apple, are in line with the predictions of KGI Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo.

Toshiba mulls chip business stake sale to Western Digital: Nikkei

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 19:28

Toshiba Corp is looking to spin off its semiconductor business assets and sell a roughly 20 percent stake in the unit to Western Digital Corp for up to $2.7 billion, the Nikkei business daily reported on Wednesday. Some U.S. investment funds are also showing interest in Toshiba's semiconductor business, the Nikkei reported, citing sources familiar with the matter. California-based data storage company Western Digital did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Samsung Group leader Lee appears to attend hearing on arrest warrant

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 19:26
SEOUL (Reuters) - Samsung Group scion Jay Y. Lee appeared at the special prosecutor's office on Wednesday en route to a court hearing where a judge will decide whether to issue an arrest warrant over his alleged role in a corruption scandal that has engulfed the administration of President Park Geun-hye. Lee did not answer reporters' questions as he made his way into an elevator at the office. His hearing will take place at the Seoul Central District Court from 10:30 a.m. (0130 GMT). (Reporting by Ju-min Park and Christine Kim; Editing by Nick Macfie)

South Korea finance minister says not time yet to discuss Samsung leader's possible arrest

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 19:26
South Korea's finance minister said on Wednesday it was "not yet time" to discuss what impact the arrest of Samsung leader Jay Y. Lee would have on the economy if it happens. Jay Y. Lee, the 48-year-old leader of Samsung Group, is due to appear at a court hearing on Wednesday morning where a judge will decide whether to issue an arrest warrant over his alleged role in a corruption scandal that has engulfed South Korea.