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Industry & Technology

RIP net neutrality: FCC chair releases plan to deregulate ISPs

Ars Technica - November 21, 2017 - 5:18pm

(credit: Free Press)

The Federal Communications Commission today announced its plan to deregulate the broadband industry and eliminate net neutrality rules, setting up a December 14 vote to finalize the repeal.

As expected, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is proposing to reverse the commission's classification of home and mobile ISPs as common carriers, eliminating the legal justification for the net neutrality rules and numerous other consumer protections. The Republican-controlled FCC is likely to vote 3-2 along party lines in favor of Pai's plan at its regular monthly meeting in December, ignoring Internet users who voiced widespread support for net neutrality rules.

Pai's decision is a big win for cable companies, telcos, and mobile carriers that will no longer face regulation of their broadband businesses under Title II of the Communications Act. Pai ignored numerous calls from consumer advocates, website operators, and Internet users who urged the FCC to preserve the rules that force Internet providers to treat all Web content fairly.

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Google to 'derank' results from Russia Today, Sputnik - CNET - News - November 21, 2017 - 5:15pm
Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google parent Alphabet, says Google's algorithms can help limit the spread of misinformation.

As Google clamps down, 'Droid developer warns 'breaking day' is coming

The Register - November 21, 2017 - 5:05pm
The Chocolate Factory plugs accessibility fudge

Mobile app developers are being forced to rewrite their code as Google attempts to tame Android's Wild West.…

Buoy Labs Buoy Release Date, Price and Specs - CNET - Reviews - November 21, 2017 - 5:00pm
The Buoy knows everything using water at home and if there's a problem.

More than 480 web firms record 'every keystroke'

BBC Technology News - November 21, 2017 - 4:56pm
More than 480 web firms use keystroke-tracking software, according to researchers at Princeton.

2019 Aston Martin Vantage Release Date, Price and Specs - Roadshow - Reviews - November 21, 2017 - 4:55pm
Sharper performance, sharper looks... it's the whole package.

2019 Lincoln MKC Release Date, Price and Specs - Roadshow - Reviews - November 21, 2017 - 4:53pm
As far as mid-cycle refreshes go, this one is light.

New hardware lets any computer run an interactive, 3D interface

Ars Technica - November 21, 2017 - 4:44pm

Video shot and edited by Justin Wolfson. Click here for transcript. (video link)

My first experience with a hologram was, like so many other people's, completely fictional: a small, blue figure projected from R2-D2 in the original Star Wars. About a decade later, I got a taste of the real-world state of the art from New York City's Museum of Holography, now closed. Holograms did exist in all their 3D glory, but they were static. You committed to displaying one image when the hologram was made, and that was it. No animated messages from princesses.

But there has been progress since. Holographic displays with actual refresh rates—albeit painfully slow ones—and other approaches have been described, but products based on any of this have yet to appear. Meanwhile, non-holographic approaches to 3D have taken off. TV and movie screens feature 3D viewing with simple glasses but don't allow interactions. Immersive goggles and gear do allow interaction, but only for the people wearing the goggles, which isolates them from anyone nearby.

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Arm Inside: Is Apple ready for the next big switch?

The Register - November 21, 2017 - 4:32pm
The hybrid Arm-Intel Mac draws near

One day we'll look back and wonder why it took PCs so long to move from RISC chips that had to pretend to be CISC chips to RISC chips that didn't have to pretend to be anything.…

Google Pixel Buds language translation tested

BBC Technology News - November 21, 2017 - 4:29pm
Rory puts Google's language translating headphones through their paces, with varying results.

There’s no good reason for the new PlayStation VR headset to exist

Ars Technica - November 21, 2017 - 4:28pm

You'd be forgiven if you didn't realize that Sony released the second version of its PlayStation VR headset this month. The new version (model number CUH-ZVR2) was announced with minimal fanfare in October because there's really not much to make fanfare about. This is a minor revision that fixes some small design flaws with last year's launch hardware and does not alter the headset's core specs (resolution, field-of-view, refresh rate, etc.) in any way.

After comparing the two headsets over the last few days, though, I came away wondering why the PSVR v2 even exists in the first place. Rather than requiring a completely new headset (which retails for $200 to $300 standalone, depending on sales), the improvements made to the v2 model could and should have been available to existing PSVR owners as modular replacements for a fraction of the cost.

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FCC chief said to reveal net neutrality repeal plan Tuesday - CNET - News - November 21, 2017 - 4:26pm
A new plan for dismantling Obama-era regulations could be unveiled Tuesday, according to a report.

Mosquito-spreading drone to fight diseases

BBC Technology News - November 21, 2017 - 4:21pm
The drones can release thousands of sterile male mosquitoes to reduce the insect population.

Save 50 percent on any US Mobile unlimited plan - CNET - News - November 21, 2017 - 4:16pm
This incredible Cheapskate exclusive gives you six months of service for as little as $17.50 per month. On what network? That's the real surprise. Plus: a stylish speaker fit for the living room and a killer collection of business tools.

AT&T-Time Warner in jeopardy as DOJ blocks deal - CNET - News - November 21, 2017 - 4:11pm
The Department of Justice cites antitrust concerns.

Steven Soderbergh's newest series, Mosaic, is now on Android - CNET - News - November 21, 2017 - 4:00pm
The award-winning director, together with HBO, has a new film experience packaged in an app that lets you change the point of view as the story unfolds.

Skype is the latest messaging app to disappear from Chinese app stores

Ars Technica - November 21, 2017 - 3:33pm

(credit: Aurich Lawson)

Yet another popular communications app has disappeared from app stores in China. According to a report from The New York Times, Microsoft's messaging service Skype is no longer available from app stores, including Apple's App Store. Google's Play Store doesn't operate in China, but Skype hasn't appeared on the various third-party Android app stores in the country since late October.

“We have been notified by the Ministry of Public Security that a number of voice over Internet protocol apps do not comply with local law,” an Apple spokeswoman told The New York Times. “These apps remain available in all other markets where they do business.”

Skype still functions in China, and a Microsoft spokesperson quoted in the report said the Skype app had been "temporarily removed" from Apple's App Store. An Apple representative stated that the company is "working to reinstate the program as soon as possible." However, that doesn't address Skype's removal on a number of websites from which Android users can download apps for their devices.

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Level 5 driverless cars by 2021 can be done, say Brit industry folk

The Register - November 21, 2017 - 3:25pm
Others reckon Chancellor's taking it a bit too far...

Over the weekend, chancellor Philip Hammond boasted that “fully driverless cars” would be on Britain’s roads in four years’ time. Some in the driverless car industry think this is a dangerous fantasy, while more high-profile driverless car software companies are all in favour of it.…

Automated checkouts 'miserable' for elderly shoppers

BBC Technology News - November 21, 2017 - 3:15pm
"Intimidating" checkouts and a lack of seating are "shutting out" the elderly from shops, a charity says.

HPE straps AyyyyyMD chip into 2P/2U server box with Epyc results

The Register - November 21, 2017 - 3:07pm
DL385 blasts SPEC benchmark

HPE has upgraded its Opteron-using DL385p server with AMD Epyc processors and used it to notch up a pair of record SPEC benchmarks.…

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