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Industry & Technology

We're into lap 21 and Node.js features have again overtaken those attempting to teach it

The Register - 5 hours 50 min ago
Community races to keep docs current

Node Summit The popularity of Node.js has caught its community by surprise and left its stewards scrambling to find a way to keep developers up to date with the rapidly changing technology.…

Police body cam footage of man tased in back prompts $110K settlement

Ars Technica - 6 hours 4 min ago

(video link)

Body cam footage of an Aurora, Colorado, cop tasing an unarmed black man in the back paved the way for the city to pay $110,000 to settle police abuse allegations, the man's lawyers told Ars Thursday.

Footage from September's tasing shows two black men being questioned by police who are responding to a weapons incident at a nearby apartment building. One of the men is seen and overheard on the video demanding to know why he's being questioned. "For what... ?" he says.

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Scientists Crispr the First Human Embryos in the US (Maybe)

Wired - 6 hours 6 min ago
The research was conducted by Shoukhrat Mitalipov, the same guy who first cloned embryonic stem cells in humans. And came up with three-parent in-vitro fertilization.

Specific area of the brain helps keep the body young

Ars Technica - 6 hours 16 min ago

Enlarge (credit: Daniele Meli)

Age may not be a state of mind, but the brain is definitely involved. That's the conclusion of a study published on Wednesday in the journal Nature, which provides compelling evidence that a specific structure in the brain, called the hypothalamus, plays a significant role in controlling the entire body's aging. The results suggest stem cells play a critical role, but only in part via their ability to generate new neurons.

The results come from researchers at the Bronx's Albert Einstein College of Medicine. They, along with several other labs, have generated evidence that suggested the hypothalamus played a key role in aging. That makes a certain amount of sense: aging is a systemic process, and the hypothalamus contains structures like the pituitary that release hormones that influence the entire body. And there's already been some indications that factors that control the dynamics of aging end up circulating through the blood.

Aging and stem cells

But what controls the timing of aging? One intriguing possibility is that neural stem cells are involved. These stem cells continue to divide and produce new neurons even after the brain is fully developed, but their numbers appear to go down over time (possibly because more of them produce new neurons than are replaced by cell divisions). If the key factors are produced by neural stem cells, then their levels should go down over time, allowing aging to proceed.

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Wallflower Release Date, Price and Specs - CNET - Reviews - 6 hours 17 min ago
The Wallflower is a $170 Wi-Fi-enabled device that sends you alerts when the stove is on and you're not home.

Amazon’s dominance comes at a high cost - CNET - News - 6 hours 25 min ago
In the latest quarter, operating costs surge again, as the e-commerce titan keeps investing in future growth.

Big Cable falls into wormhole to alternate universe, sends back blog post about USA's amazing broadband

The Register - 6 hours 27 min ago
You are wrong about internet speeds. Love, NCTA

Analysis In a striking example of corporate gaslighting, the US cable industry's trade association, the NCTA, claims that the defining characteristic of the US broadband market is competition.…

Vizio E series 2017 (60- to 80-inch) review - CNET - Reviews - 6 hours 28 min ago
Vizio is known for delivering inexpensive TVs that still manage to perform well, and the bigger sizes in its E series continue the trend.

How the Broadpwn Wi-Fi Vulnerability Impacted a Billion iPhones and Android Phones

Wired - July 27, 2017 - 10:53pm
A Broadcom flaw that undermined scores of Android and iOS devices hints the future of smartphone hacking lies in third-party components.

Microsoft: Get in, IT nerds, you're now using Insider builds and twice-annual Windows rollouts

The Register - July 27, 2017 - 10:52pm
Trust us, we never screw anything up

Living up to its Windows-as-a-service promise, Microsoft has laid out the schedule it will use to roll out Windows 10 and Office 365 updates in future.…

Are you psychic? New app claims it can tell you - CNET - News - July 27, 2017 - 10:33pm
Commentary: Am I Psychic? says it uses scientific methods to show whether you're, you know, paranormal.

How Jeff Bezos, Briefly the World’s Richest Person, Spends His Cash

Wired - July 27, 2017 - 10:20pm
How do Bezos' spending habits compare with Bill Gates'?

As dominance of launch market looms, SpaceX now valued at $21 billion

Ars Technica - July 27, 2017 - 10:10pm

Enlarge / Maye Musk and Elon Musk attend the 2017 Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Beverly Hills. (credit: Taylor Hill/Getty Images)

After two serious accidents in 2015 and 2016, SpaceX has been on a tear in 2017 with 10 successful launches, including the historic re-flight of two used boosters and a used Dragon spacecraft. These achievements suggest the company is well on its way toward developing low-cost, reusable boosters, and therefore the rocket company founded by Elon Musk may be on the cusp of capturing much of the global launch market.

A new valuation appears to back up this optimism. According to the New York Times, SpaceX recently raised $350 million in additional funding, and during this process the company was valued at $21 billion. This represents a significant increase from 2015, when Google and Fidelity invested $1 billion in SpaceX, valuing the company at $12 billion.

The new report notes that the updated value of SpaceX places the company in rarefied air, as just six other venture-backed companies are valued at $20 billion or more around the world. These companies include US-based companies Uber, Airbnb, Palantir, and WeWork, as well as Chinese firms Didi Chuxing and Xiaomi.

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Meizu Pro 7 Release Date, Price and Specs - CNET - Reviews - July 27, 2017 - 9:40pm
Can this Android phone break the curse?

Canceled visit? That's OK, Airbnb will let you post a review - CNET - News - July 27, 2017 - 9:36pm
Before now, if guests had a bad home rental experience they couldn't leave a review unless they completed their stay. That's changing.

Hackers can turn web-connected car washes into horrible death traps

The Register - July 27, 2017 - 9:24pm
Yeah, boss, I took care of him. I had him waxed. Literally

Black Hat Forget hijacking smart light bulbs. Researchers claim they can hack into internet-connected car wash machines from the other side of the world and potentially turn them into death traps.…

Windows 10 Creators Update now available to all, November Update end-of-life’d

Ars Technica - July 27, 2017 - 9:15pm

Enlarge / The announcement of the Creators Update in October 2016. (credit: Ars Technica)

Some four months after its initial release, Microsoft says it has opened the floodgates and is now pushing out Windows 10 version 1703, the Creators Update, to every compatible PC (a category that excludes systems using Intel's Clover Trail Atoms).

Earlier this month, AdDuplex, which tracks the penetration of the different Windows 10 versions, reported that as of July 18, the Creators Update had just passed 50 percent of Windows 10 systems. Forty-six percent are on the previous version, 1607 (aka the Anniversary Update).

Until now, the deployment of the Creators Update has been throttled to stage its rollout. That throttle is now removed, so most of that 46 percent should now start upgrading. Microsoft is also saying that with this full rollout, enterprise customers should have confidence deploying the update. With Microsoft getting rid of the "Current Branch" and "Current Branch for Business" nomenclature, this is the closest thing to a signal that the version is enterprise-ready.

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The Rolls-Royce Phantom Personalizes Opulence

Wired - July 27, 2017 - 9:00pm
The latest flagship Rolls has a new, extremely fancy way to make the dashboard extra "you."

Samsung Pay could come to non-Samsung phones - CNET - News - July 27, 2017 - 8:59pm
Samsung's mobile payment feature one-ups Apple Pay and Android Pay in one major way.

Tiny pillars put light and sound in a quantum superposition

Ars Technica - July 27, 2017 - 8:55pm

Enlarge / It's now possible to precisely fabricate very small pillars. (credit: Stanford University)

In recent years, there has been a lot of interest in coupling sound and light together. Admittedly, we've been doing this for a long time, but we've always been limited in terms of what we can do with how nature puts materials together. Now, with our ability to construct structures that are the right size, we can make devices that really dance to the tune that we give them.

This control has been demonstrated in a very cute way recently. Researchers have put together micro pillars that convert light into long-lasting, very high-frequency sound waves.

Nature leads the way

Nature, of course, allows sound and light to play together in different ways. For instance, if a gas absorbs light, it will heat up and expand, so flashing a light into a gas will generate a sound wave at the frequency of the flashing. One of the most sensitive techniques for measuring how materials absorb light makes use of this.

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