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Viral video of man being dragged from United flight get officers fired

Ars Technica - 1 hour 17 sec ago

Two aviation security officers involved in the April incident in which a 69-year-old doctor was violently removed from a United Airlines flight have been fired. The doctor, David Dao, suffered a broken nose, the loss of two teeth, and a concussion in an event that went viral on the Internet after it was captured by passengers' mobile phones.

The Chicago Department of Aviation did not release the names of the officers who were fired. Another resigned and a fourth official was briefly suspended in the O'Hare International Airport episode, in which Dao had refused to give up his seat on a flight to Louisville that was overbooked. He was forcibly removed. Dao later sued the airline and settled for an an undisclosed amount. The ordeal also prompted United's CEO, Oscar Munoz, to publicly apologize.

Chicago's inspector general on Tuesday confirmed earlier reports that the officers involved had suggested that it was Dao's fault that he struck his face on an armrest before he was dragged off the plane.

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Big-budget, single-player gaming isn’t dead (yet)

Ars Technica - 1 hour 10 min ago

Enlarge / If a license like Star Wars isn't enough to justify a big single-player game budget, what is?

Yesterday's news that EA is shutting down Visceral Games is bad news for fans of franchises like Dead Space and for the studio's unnamed Star Wars project. But the abrupt shutdown has also caused a bit of an existential crisis to creep into the game industry chatter regarding the future of big-budget, single-player, story-driven gaming in general.

The core of all that worry comes from a section of the blog post EA's Patrick Söderlund wrote to announce Visceral's shutdown (emphasis added):

Our Visceral studio has been developing an action-adventure title set in the Star Wars universe. In its current form, it was shaping up to be a story-based, linear adventure game. Throughout the development process, we have been testing the game concept with players, listening to the feedback about what and how they want to play, and closely tracking fundamental shifts in the marketplace. It has become clear that to deliver an experience that players will want to come back to and enjoy for a long time to come, we needed to pivot the design.

That's all a bit vague, but the wording suggests that the "story-based, linear adventure game" being planned didn't look like it was going to turn a profit given "fundamental shifts in the marketplace." In other words, they started making Uncharted and now they want Destiny.

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Pixel 2 vs. iPhone 8 Plus: Which camera is better? - CNET - News - 1 hour 23 min ago
The Pixel 2 and the iPhone 8 Plus battle it out to determine which phone's camera does better portraits, landscape selfies and low-light shots.

Google reportedly put fake news ads on fact-checking sites - CNET - News - 1 hour 26 min ago
Fake news appears to be popping up everywhere, even on the websites designed to stop it.

Google Calendar for Web gets its first redesign since 2011

Ars Technica - 1 hour 29 min ago

Google Calendar on the Web is getting a new look. Google announced that the company is "taking a lot of what you know and love from Calendar’s mobile application, like the modern color palette and sleek design, and bringing it to the Web." Calendar is getting a "Material" redesign.

Calendar's existing design is something like six years old. It debuted in 2011 and uses a "red and gray" motif that just isn't Google's style anymore. "Material Design" is Google's current design philosophy, which debuted in 2014 on Android 5.0 Lollipop. The design language usually mixes white backgrounds with bold splashes of color, animation, and lots of whitespace. Information is presented in grids of cards, and the design language usually brings in smartphone motifs like "hamburger" buttons that open navigation panels. Material Design sites tend to look like big smartphone apps.

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Hitachi's IoT gang punts never-off data protection platform

The Register - 1 hour 31 min ago
A masterclass in mind-boggling 'always-on availability' spiel

Vantara, Hitachi's new Internet of Things + analytics business, has sped up its operational and disaster recovery chops, claiming to elevate IT with always-on data availability.…

Get an LG SJ5Y wireless sound bar and subwoofer for $124.99 - CNET - News - 1 hour 59 min ago
Selling for at least $250 elsewhere, this may be the best sound bar deal of 2017. Plus: two bonus deals!

A hole-in-your-chest Halloween costume tutorial, to spice up any costume party

Ars Technica - 1 hour 59 min ago

Costume design by Lowri Best. Shot and edited by Justin Wolfson. (video link)

Earlier this year, our video production team began spitballing ideas for a Halloween costume project. They likely thought the Ars editorial crew would suggest some boilerplate pop-culture "nerd" ideas, revolving around famous sci-fi or horror characters. Instead, they sighed after reviewing our long, technically challenging list full of stuff like robotic suits and diabolical person-sized packet-sniffing devices. (It was a stab at putting the "trick" into "trick or treat.")

In the end, we settled on a project that leans a little closer to the traditional affordable, last-minute costume ideas you'd find on the Web, though with a decent DIY tech-geek bent: your own see-through flesh wound.

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Post-zombie movie 'The Cured' digests human psyche, politics - CNET - News - 2 hours 25 sec ago
This taut, suspenseful chiller has brains, much like a "Black Mirror" episode.

BlackBerry Motion lurches into UK stores

The Register - 2 hours 3 min ago
Endurance test

BlackBerry Mobile, which is TCL for all intents and purposes, is making its enterprise slab available in the UK.…

The Earth’s interior is teeming with dead plates

Ars Technica - 2 hours 25 min ago

Enlarge (credit: Atlas of the Underworld)

Last week, scientists released a monumental interactive catalog that tracks 94 ancient tectonic plates lurking deep within Earth’s mantle, a resource they’re calling an “Atlas of the Underworld.”

Although scientists have known for decades that tectonic plates plunge into the Earth’s interior at subduction zones, until recently, those plates disappeared off the geological map once they stopped generating earthquakes, which happens after they’re around 670km below the surface. In the last few years, seismic tomography, which uses waves from earthquakes to make images of the planet’s interior, has restored their visibility. It has revealed subducted plates sinking in the mantle all the way down to the core-mantle boundary, 2,900km below Earth’s surface.

Now, Dutch scientists Douwe van der Meer, Douwe van Hinsbergen, and Wim Spakman of Utrecht University have catalogued 94 separate pieces of ancient tectonic plates, called “slabs,” in the mantle, linking them to dates where geological events happened while they were on the surface. Some subducted almost 300 million years ago, while others can be traced to active faults, such as those along the western coast of the Americas.

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Sonos One review - CNET - Reviews - 2 hours 30 min ago
Move over, Amazon Echo and Google Home. The Alexa-powered Sonos One is the first smart speaker that actually sounds good playing music.

Please replace the sword, says owner of now-hollow stone

The Register - 2 hours 35 min ago
Legendary lake lark comes true, sort of

The legendary sword has been pulled from the stone – but the owner wants it back and a crowdfunding campaign has been set up to replace the blade.…

There's still time to save the Great Barrier Reef from dying - CNET - News - 3 hours 1 min ago
We're killing one of the world's most spectacular natural wonders. It's not too late to change.

Remo+ DoorCam Release Date, Price and Specs - CNET - Reviews - 3 hours 4 min ago
Forget traditional security cameras. The Remo+ DoorCam fits right on your front door.

Openreach offers duct-off providers 'OSA Filter' instead of Dark Fibre Access

The Register - 3 hours 8 min ago
Part of the opening of the network

Openreach has today offered its communication providers an alternative to the Ofcom-proposed Dark Fibre Access (DFA) product, which a court ruling slapped down three months ago.…

BoundHook: Microsoft downplays Windows systems exploit technique

The Register - 3 hours 33 min ago
It's just not a security vulnerability, says Redmond

Features of the Intel MPX designed to prevent memory errors and attacks might be abused to launch assaults on Windows systems, security researchers claim.…

One phone, two screens? Radical design opens door for change - CNET - News - 3 hours 34 min ago
An unlikely company is looking to kick-start a new trend in phones. It just needs to avoid creating a flop in the process.

Snapchat to make original TV-style shows

BBC Technology News - 3 hours 46 min ago
The social media app teams up with NBC to create a new studio where they plan to make original shows.

A new LEGO set honors the women of NASA—and it looks pretty awesome

Ars Technica - 3 hours 46 min ago

Enlarge / Margaret Hamilton holds a LEGO figure of ... herself. (credit: LEGO)

A new playset from LEGO will honor four key women in NASA history—astronomer Nancy Grace Roman, computer scientist Margaret Hamilton, and pioneering astronauts Sally Ride and Mae Jemison. The 231-piece set will be released on Nov. 1, with a recommended selling price of $24.99.

First proposed in July, 2016 by the deputy editor of MIT News, science writer Maia Weinstock, on the LEGO Ideas website, the project reached 10,000 supporters in just 15 days. "The set clearly touched and inspired many," Weinstock said. In addition to the historical minifigures, the set includes three builds that put the work of each woman into historical context.


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