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Industry & Technology

Nokia 8: An all-aluminum flagship with same-day Android security updates

Ars Technica - 1 hour 17 min ago

Mark Walton

SPECS AT A GLANCE: NOKIA 8 SCREEN 5.3-inch 2560×1440 IPS OS Android 7.1.1 CPU Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, up to 2.45GHz RAM 4GB GPU Adreno 540 STORAGE 64GB (expandable with microSD card) NETWORKING 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 5.0, GPS, GLONASS, NFC BANDS GSM: 850/900/1800/1900
WCDMA: 1, 2, 5, 8
TDS-CDMA: 34, 39
LTE:1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 20, 28, 38, 39, 40, 41 PORTS 1x USB 3.1 Type-C CAMERA Rear: 13MP (Colour + OIS) + 13MP (Mono), 1.12um, f/2.0, 76.9˚, PDAF, IR, Zeiss optics.
Front: 13MP PDAF, 1.12um, f/2.0, 78.4˚, display flash SIZE 151.5 x 73.7 x 7.9mm (camera bump 0.4mm) WEIGHT 160g BATTERY 3090 mAh, Quick Charge 3.0 STARTING PRICE €600 (~£550/$570) OTHER PERKS Splashproof IP54, fingerprint sensor, Dual-Sight streaming, Ozo Audio

Just when you thought we were done with so-called Android "flagship" phones for the year—what with the likes of the HTC U 11, LG G6, OnePlus 5, and Samsung Galaxy S8 already on the market—along comes Nokia with another.

The Nokia 8, just like every other flagship Android phone, is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835. It has a QHD screen, 4GB of memory, 64GB of storage, and the obligatory dual-camera setup, complete with branded optics from long-term partner Zeiss. Priced at €600 (UK price TBC, but probably £550) and due for release in September worldwide (except the US), the Nokia 8 is about as exciting as its generic aluminium body and by-the-numbers spec sheet suggests—but perhaps that's the point.

Read 13 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Racist Daily Stormer goes down again as CloudFlare drops support

Ars Technica - 1 hour 27 min ago

Matthew Prince, cofounder and chief executive officer of CloudFlare. (credit: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

All week, the infamous hate site Daily Stormer has been battling to stay online in the face of a concerted social media campaign to shut it down. The site lost its "dailystormer.com" domain on Monday after first GoDaddy and then Google Domains blacklisted it from their domain registration services.

The site re-appeared online on Wednesday morning at a new domain name, dailystormer.ru. But within hours, the site had gone offline again after the site was dropped by Cloudflare, an intermediary that defends customers against denial-of-service attacks.

Daily Stormer's Andrew Anglin reported Cloudflare's decision to drop the site in a post on the social media site Gab. His post was first spotted by journalist Matthew Sheffield.

Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Trump's biz buddies abandon ship as manufacturing council disbands

The Register - 1 hour 36 min ago
Handling of protests proves toxic to private industry group

Facing mass defections from CEOs repulsed by President Trump's handling of protests over hate groups, the White House has disbanded its Manufacturing Council.…

FCC giving special help to right-wing TV news company, Democrats allege

Ars Technica - 1 hour 46 min ago

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Linda Braucht)

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai should explain why he's taken a series of actions that help the business of Sinclair Broadcast Group, Democratic lawmakers said in a letter to Pai on Monday.

The Democrats told Pai that recent news reports raise questions about "whether actions taken by the FCC under your leadership show a pattern of preferential treatment for Sinclair and whether a series of interactions between your office, the Trump campaign and Trump administration, and Sinclair demonstrate inappropriate coordination."

Also on Monday, a New York Times story titled "How a Conservative TV Giant Is Ridding Itself of Regulation" said that "Pai has undertaken a deregulatory blitz, enacting or proposing a wish list of fundamental policy changes advocated by [Sinclair Chairman David] Smith and his company."

Read 11 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Comp sci world shock: Bonn boffin proposes P≠NP proof, preps for prestige, plump prize

The Register - 1 hour 52 min ago
Potential math challenge solution greeted with skepticism

Norbert Blum, a computer science professor at the University of Bonn, has proposed a solution to an unsolved math problem that could win him $1m, not to mention professional accolades, if his approach withstands scrutiny.…

Anti-Google far-right protest march postponed - CNET

cNET.com - News - 2 hours 3 min ago
Commentary: Organizers claim "alt-left terrorist groups" have threatened their "peaceful" march planned for Saturday.

Donald Trump disbands CEO advisory councils via Twitter - CNET

cNET.com - News - 2 hours 3 min ago
Amid a flurry of CEO resignations following the Charlottesville, Virginia, tragedy, Trump tweets that he's doing away with two of his advisory councils.

The origin of complex life on Earth just got a little less mysterious

Ars Technica - 2 hours 17 min ago

Enlarge / About 650 million years ago, the Sturtian ice age turned our planet into Snowball Earth. When the planet warmed again, it was plunged into a hothouse phase that unleashed phosphates, oxygen, and other elements necessary to build multicellular life. (credit: NASA)

Life on Earth goes back at least two billion years, but it was only in the last half-billion that it would have been visible to the naked eye. One of the enduring questions among biologists is how life made the jump from microbes to the multicellular plants and animals who rule the planet today. Now, scientists have analyzed chemical traces of life in rocks that are up to a billion years old, and they discovered how a dramatic ice age may have led to the multicellular tipping point.

Writing in Nature, the researchers carefully reconstruct a timeline of life before and after one of the planet's most all-encompassing ice ages. About 700 million years ago, the Sturtian glaciation created what's called a "snowball Earth," completely covering the planet in ice from the poles to the equator. About 659 million years ago, the Sturtian ended with an intense greenhouse period when the planet heated rapidly. Then, just as things were burning up, the Marinoan glaciation started and covered the planet in ice again. In the roughly 15 million years between the two snowballs, a new world began to emerge.

Just before the rise of plankton that provided food for multicellular animals, the Earth's continents had merged and broken apart and merged again. (credit: Metelkin et al., 2015)

Jochen J. Brocks, a geologist from the Australian National University, Canberra, joined with his colleagues to track the emergence of multicellular life by identifying traces left by cell membranes in ancient rocks. Made from lipids and their byproducts, cell membrane "biomarkers" are like fossils for early microorganisms. By measuring chemical changes in these membranes, Brocks and his team discovered a "rapid rise" of new, larger forms of sea-going plankton algae in the warming waters after the Sturtian snowball. Some of these lifeforms were eukaryotes, meaning they had developed a nucleus—that's another necessary step on the road to multicellular life.

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Qualcomm bets on AI, acquires machine learning startup - CNET

cNET.com - News - 2 hours 17 min ago
The chipmaker buys Scyfer as part of a plan to bring artificial intelligence to devices, cars and machines.

Google Home starts rolling out voice calling - CNET

cNET.com - News - 2 hours 18 min ago
Soon, you can use Google's smart speaker to call your contacts.

Samsung ad claims Galaxy S8 is sand-resistant (really?) - CNET

cNET.com - News - 2 hours 21 min ago
Commentary: Have you ever considered the effects of beach sand on your phone? Samsung says it has. But on what basis?

Bay Area: Join us tonight, 8/16, to talk about Silicon Valley and the inequality crisis

Ars Technica - 2 hours 34 min ago

Enlarge / Catherine Bracy will be our guest at Ars Technica Live on 8/16, discussing how the tech industry can address issues of inequality in the Bay Area. (credit: Catherine Bracy)

Anyone who has been in the Bay Area in recent years knows that the tech industry plays an outsized role in our daily lives. We feel it in things like our rent and the price of our drinks—regardless of whether we work in the industry or not. That's why Catherine Bracy has created a new Oakland-based organization, the TechEquity Collaborative, which organizes the tech community to advocate for policy changes that will ensure the region's tech-driven economy works for everyone.

Join Ars Technica editors Annalee Newitz and Cyrus Farivar tonight, 8/16, in conversation with Bracy at Ars Technica Live, at Eli's Mile High Club in Oakland.

Bracy will discuss the work TechEquity is doing to enlist the tech industry to fix the region's inequality crisis, as well as her experiences at Code for America and Obama for America. There will be plenty of time for audience questions, too. Doors are at 7 PM and the event starts at 7:30. Tickets are free, but please do RSVP with Eventbrite so you're guaranteed a spot.

Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

iPhone 7S may get thicker to fit in more goodies - CNET

cNET.com - News - 2 hours 44 min ago
The expanded waistline could make wireless charging a thing according to one report.

Disgraced US Secret Service agent coughs to second Bitcoin heist

The Register - 2 hours 45 min ago
Fox, meet henhouse

An ex-Secret Service agent who stole Bitcoins from the Silk Road dark web drugs bazaar he was supposed to be investigating has admitted stealing even more sacks of the digital currency.…

Bank-fraud malware not detected by any AV hosted in Chrome Web Store. Twice

Ars Technica - 2 hours 45 min ago

Enlarge

A researcher has uncovered an elaborate bank-fraud scam that's using a malicious extension in Google's Chrome Web Store to steal targets' passwords.

Once installed, the Interface Online extension, uploaded at least twice in the past 17 days, surreptitiously monitors all connections made with the Chrome browser. When users visit specific pages programmed into the code, the extension activates a JavaScript routine that logs the user name and password entered into the form. The extension then uploads them to a server controlled by the attackers. This entry in the Google-owned Virus Total service reports the extension was not detected by any of the 58 most widely used anti-malware products at the time this post was going live.

Google officials removed the extension on Tuesday, after Renato Marinho, who is the Chief Research Officer of Morphus Labs and a volunteer at the SANS Institute, reported it was part of a scam hitting Brazilian bank customers. It had been available since July 31 and was downloaded 30 times. On Wednesday, the same extension reappeared and showed it had already received 23 downloads. It remained available for download here as this post was going live, although Marinho said he reported the reposted app to Google. Company representatives didn't respond to e-mail seeking comment for this post.

Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Ukraine malware author turns witness in Russian DNC hacking investigation

Ars Technica - 2 hours 53 min ago

Enlarge / A bear. (credit: Yathin S Krishnappa)

A Ukrainian malware author who built the PAS Web shell—a PHP-based implant used to execute commands remotely on hacked systems—has turned himself in to Ukrainian authorities. He has been cooperating with the Federal Bureau of Investigation's probe into the apparent Russian hacking of the Democratic National Committee. The information provided by "Profexor" to Ukrainian investigators and the FBI reveals, in part, how hackers (who were apparently coordinated by a Russian intelligence agency) used a combination of purpose-built and community tools as part of what researchers have labeled as the threat group "APT 28," also known as "Fancy Bear."

According to a report by The New York Times' Andrew Kramer and Andrew Higgins, "Profexor" has not been charged in Ukraine, as he didn't use his remote access tool himself for malicious purposes. He did offer a version of the remote access tool for free on his member-only website, but he also built custom versions and provided training for pay. One of his customers was someone who used the tool in connection with malware connected to Fancy Bear to establish a backdoor into the DNC's network.

Ukrainian Member of Parliament Anton Gerashchenko, a former advisor to Ukraine's interior minister, told the Times that Profexor's contact with the Russians behind the DNC hack was entirely via online conversations and voice calls. Gerashchenko said that "Profexor" was paid to write a custom version of his tool without knowing what it would be used for.

Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Uber halted in the Philippines after 'misunderstanding' - CNET

cNET.com - News - 3 hours 1 min ago
The ride-hailing company reportedly disobeys regulators' orders and is forced to temporarily shutter its service.

Nokia's comeback is on: The flagship 8 emerges

The Register - 3 hours 4 min ago
Hopes rest on stock, OZO Audio

Hands On To understand the appeal of the first "Nokia flagship" in three years, the Nokia 8, think of what Google was doing with the Nexus line until it caught "Pixelitis"*. Stock Android, monthly updates, decent imaging, and competitively priced. And really no other frills or gimmicks.…

Nokia 8 Release Date, Price and Specs - CNET

cNET.com - Reviews - 3 hours 4 min ago
With a supercharged processor and dual camera stuffed inside a gorgeous metal body, the Nokia 8 is the phone we've been craving.

Nokia 8 phone was built to help you overshare - CNET

cNET.com - News - 3 hours 4 min ago
Commentary: The flagship Nokia 8’s livestreaming and split-screen view option gives the Snapchat and Instagram crowd a new phone to consider.

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