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Industry & Technology

Amazon said to consider purchase of movie theater chain - CNET - News - 1 hour 39 min ago
The e-tailer is vying to buy Landmark Theatres, a chain owned by Mark Cuban, Bloomberg reports.

India's taking another shot at making it to the moon - CNET - News - 2 hours 19 min ago
The country's moon lander and rover was scheduled to leave this year, but has been delayed till January next year.

Intel steals Nvidia's thunder with sneak peek at its first discrete GPU in years - CNET - News - 3 hours 37 min ago
It's been nearly 20 years since Intel produced a real graphics card.

Intel uses Bluetooth to keep flying drones from colliding - CNET - News - 5 hours 18 min ago
The technology could be good for something besides wireless headsets and keyboards.

New sponge for cleaning harbor oil leaks has a successful real world test

Ars Technica - 6 hours 37 min ago

Enlarge / "Seth Darling, Jeff Elam, Ed Barry conduct research experiments with the Oleo Sponge in Santa Barbara, California." (credit: Argonne National Laboratory)

In March 2017, Ars wrote about a new material that could soak up oil like a sponge. The so-called Oleo Sponge could be wrung out, the oil could be collected, and the sponge could be used again. The material had just been developed at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) outside of Chicago, so it was still being tested in controlled environments.

Now, Argonne has announced a successful real-world test of the Oleo Sponge at an oil seep in a channel near Goleta, California.

The test, conducted in April, involved immersing the Oleo Sponge in the Coal Oil Point Seep Field in the Santa Barbara Channel. The oil seep field is natural and one of the largest in the known world (PDF). Not only does it release lots of methane every day, but it also releases oil into the channel water. A press release from ANL notes, "the seeps have been active for at least 500,000 years and release roughly 40 tons of methane, 19 tons of other organic gases, and more than 100 barrels of liquid petroleum daily."

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Mozilla-endorsed security plug-in accused of tracking users

The Register - 6 hours 47 min ago
Web Security says there's nothing nefarious to its URL collection

A security plug-in for the Firefox browser is under fire after users discovered it was collecting and uploading their online activity.…

Twitter's Dorsey vows 'consistent' enforcement after Alex Jones, Infowars suspended - CNET - News - 7 hours 5 min ago
But still no full ban for the conspiracy theorist who's used Twitter to attack children and families.

Robot to star in new Tony Kaye movie 2nd Born - CNET - News - 7 hours 6 min ago
Watch out human actors. Robots could be competing for your roles.

Making money mining Coinhive? Yeah, you and nine other people

The Register - 7 hours 14 min ago
10 users controlling the bulk of cryptocoin generator funds

Mining internet currency on websites with Coinhive scripts is a lucrative endeavor, but only for a handful of people.…

Twitter suspends Infowars host Alex Jones' ability to tweet - CNET - News - 7 hours 38 min ago
Twitter follows the lead of other social media platforms.

Looks like Tweetbot, Twitterrific and other Twitter apps are going to be crippled - CNET - News - 7 hours 44 min ago
Starting Thursday, several useful features are expected to be removed or degraded.

Insignia Voice review: Cheap Google Assistant speaker sounds better than Google Home Mini - CNET - Reviews - 7 hours 45 min ago
Could this be the 21st-century clock radio you were looking for?

Drama as boffins claim to reach the Holy Grail of superconductivity

The Register - 7 hours 47 min ago
But odd results and email impersonation raise eyebrows

A pair of physicists have claimed to reach the holy grail in physics: room temperature superconductivity.…

Game of Thrones deaths won't match books, George R.R. Martin says - CNET - News - 7 hours 53 min ago
The author says he's "working on" Winds of Winter, and the print books won't always align with the HBO series.

Samsung Harman Kardon sound bars aiming for the high-end Atmos enthusiast - CNET - News - 8 hours 3 min ago
Samsung has announced two Dolby Atmos and DTS:X sound bars that will be available from late August, with pricing starting at $1,200.

Cisco shift to recurring revenue gives 3.8 billion signs that it's working

The Register - 8 hours 22 min ago
Customer interest in hybrid cloud buoys networking biz

Switch and comms kit biz Cisco reported $12.8bn revenue for its fiscal 2018 fourth quarter, a six per cent increase that is a bit more than than analysts expected.…

DNA reveals ancient parrot breeder supplied US Southwest peoples

Ars Technica - 8 hours 26 min ago

Enlarge / Chaco Canyon ruins in New Mexico. (credit: Erik Terdal / Flickr)

Lots of macaw parrot skeletons and feathers have turned up at human settlements in the southwestern US and northwestern Mexico dating back to at least 900 CE. Given that these sites are at least 1,000 kilometers north of the bird’s natural range, it has long been clear that there was an interesting story here. How were macaws traded between cultures and over such long distances, long before the arrival of the Spanish and their horses?

Between 1250 and 1450, a settlement discovered at Paquimé in Mexico seems to have hosted a macaw-breeding program that must have met the demand for this culturally significant bird in the region. But what about before Paquimé? Archaeologists have debated the possibilities: that traders frequently traveled the long route to bring back macaws, that birds were haphazardly traded between settlements, or that there was an earlier breeding post.

A study led by Penn State’s Richard George sought to answer this question using DNA from scarlet macaw skeletons found at New Mexico’s Chaco Canyon and Mimbres settlements. Techniques to recover fairly complete DNA sequences from archaeological specimens have advanced in recent years, allowing researchers to test hypotheses with much more confidence.

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Best Buy buys Jitterbug phone maker GreatCall for $800M - CNET - News - August 15, 2018 - 10:48pm
"New: Tech for seniors," reads one of the company's new ads.

China stops approving new video, phone games - CNET - News - August 15, 2018 - 10:41pm
And it's unclear when regulators will resume licensing.

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