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A Curious Plan to Save the Environment With the Blockchain

Wired - 28 min 41 sec ago
An ecologist argues that cryptographically-sealed databases could starve out inefficiencies that are ruining the environment. The post A Curious Plan to Save the Environment With the Blockchain appeared first on WIRED.

Pioneer Kodi plug-in unplugs

The Register - 57 min 11 sec ago
Too risky, too spammy, too smutty, say devs

Developers of the popular Kodi plug-in Navi-X have pulled the plug on further development, citing the "current legal climate" around its work.…

Gender confirmation surgeries rose 20% in the last two years

Ars Technica - 57 min 36 sec ago

Enlarge / Gearah Goldstein speaks with her plastic surgeon, Dr. Loren Schechter, about her gender confirmation surgery. (credit: ASPS)

Gender confirmation procedures are on the rise in the US, doctors reported Monday.

Surgeons performed 3,200 transfeminine and transmasculine procedures in 2016, according to new data from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). That’s nearly a 20 percent increase from numbers in 2015, when the ASPS began tracking the procedures, the society says.

Gender confirmation surgeries encompass a variety of procedures, including those that contour or transform the face, chest, or genitals. “There is no one-size-fits-all approach to gender confirmation," Loren Schechter, a board-certified plastic surgeon based in Chicago, said in a statement. "There's a wide spectrum of surgeries that someone may choose to treat gender dysphoria, which is a disconnect between how an individual feels and what that person's anatomic characteristics are."

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Review: HP Spectre x360 13

Wired - 59 min 3 sec ago
HP delivers a super-slim machine with solid specs. The post Review: HP Spectre x360 13 appeared first on WIRED.

Lawyer who founded Prenda Law is disbarred

Ars Technica - 1 hour 8 min ago

Enlarge / John L. Steele, photographed in Chicago in 2010. (credit: Nancy Stone/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images)

John Steele, one of the masterminds behind the Prenda Law "copyright trolling" scheme, has been disbarred. Court papers indicate that Steele agreed to the disbarment, which was announced by the Illinois Supreme Court on Friday.

Steele pled guilty in March to federal fraud and money laundering charges. Over the course of several years, Steele said he and a co-defendant, Paul Hansmeier, made more than $6 million with "sham entities" that threatened Internet users with copyright lawsuits.

Along with Hansmeier and a now-deceased attorney named Paul Duffy, Steele "conspired to extort settlement funds from thousands of Internet users in a multi-jurisdictional copyright litigation scheme," Illinois attorney regulators said in a statement of charges. "Specifically, they attempted to exact settlements from users who allegedly infringed on the copyrights of certain pornographic movies, including movies that Mr. Steele himself produced and distributed."

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Facebook deals with 54,000 cases of porn -- a month - CNET - News - 1 hour 8 min ago
The content ranges from revenge pornography and "sextortion," according to a report from The Guardian.

The Norwegian Joy lets you race a go-kart on the high seas - CNET - News - 1 hour 16 min ago
Live your dreams of becoming an F1 pro racer as you sail away to China.

Europe vs. Google: The end is finally in sight - CNET - News - 1 hour 19 min ago
The European Commission "in the next few months" will conclude its investigation into Google's alleged abuse of its dominance in search and Android.

Get a Lenovo N22 Chromebook for $129 - CNET - News - 1 hour 21 min ago
Ideal for students, the N22 features 4GB of RAM, a 10-hour battery and even a pair of USB 3.0 ports. Plus: Get the Mass Effect trilogy for just $5!

Samsung QNQ7F series review - CNET - Reviews - 1 hour 23 min ago
The high-end Samsung Q7 will appeal more to design-conscious buyers who hate wires than home theater fans who demand peak picture quality.

Quick, better lock down that CISO role. Salaries have apparently hit €1m

The Register - 1 hour 26 min ago
Thanks WannaCrypt... Hey, about our new security budget. Oh, you've cut it

Salaries for chief information security officers (CISOs) at leading European firms have hit €1m (£850,000) as the threat of data breaches grows, City AM reports.…

Verizon drafts off Indianapolis 500 to hype 5G - CNET - News - 1 hour 27 min ago
The telecom company has set up a house near the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to show off the capabilities of its 5G wireless service.

Ford replaces CEO Mark Fields with Smart Mobility chief Jim Hackett - Roadshow - News - 1 hour 27 min ago
Now THIS is how you get the news cycle started on a Monday morning.

Japan, China have extracted methane hydrate from the seafloor

Ars Technica - 1 hour 30 min ago

Enlarge / A photo from the China Geological Survey. The researchers extracted methane hydrate from the bottom of the South China Sea. (credit: China Geological Survey)

This month, teams from Japan and China have successfully extracted methane hydrate, a hydrocarbon gas trapped in a structure of water molecules, off the seafloor. The substance looks like ice but can be set on fire, and it’s energy-dense—one cubic meter of methane hydrate can contain 160 cubic meters of gas.

This makes searching for methane hydrate an attractive research project for several countries. According to the Department of Energy, methane hydrates are abundant on the seafloor and under permafrost, and they contain “perhaps more organic carbon that all the world’s oil, gas, and coal combined.”

Such vast reserves of fossil fuels are untapped because of how difficult it is to extract them. As a 2012 post from the Energy Information Agency (EIA) stated, until recently, methane hydrates “provided more problems than solutions.” Preventing their formation around deepwater oil and gas drilling operations has been a crucial part of planning ocean wells. The “ice” substance that contains the gas generally can’t just be picked up off the seafloor because it disintegrates outside of its high-pressure environment. The South China Morning Post wrote that current extraction efforts involve machinery “to depressurize or melt [the methane hydrate] on the sea bed and channel the gas to the surface.”

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Bitcoin hits $2,000 trading high point

BBC Technology News - 1 hour 30 min ago
The virtual currency is proving popular but rival crypto-cash systems are catching up fast.

Google's interactive hub explains Syrian refugee crisis - CNET - News - 1 hour 33 min ago
"Searching for Syria" answers five of the most common search queries about the war that has devastated the country.

'Pirates 5' review: This time around, dead men tell good tales - CNET - News - 1 hour 37 min ago
The series rights its course and fills its fifth film with adventure and heart. A spoiler-free review!

Dish customers can channel surf with Amazon Alexa - CNET - News - 1 hour 40 min ago
Dish Network is the first TV provider to make its service compatible with Amazon's digital assistant.

Google Doodle champions Mohawk activist Richard Oakes - CNET - News - 1 hour 49 min ago
Oakes spent much of the 1960s and early '70s campaigning for the rights of Native Americans, including the right to control their lands.

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