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posted by martyb on Friday June 11, @11:45PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

India has more than 28,000 'black fungus' cases: Health Minister:

"From 28 states, we have some 28,252 cases of mucormycosis till now. Out of this, 86 percent, or 24,370 cases, have a history of COVID-19 and 62.3 percent, or 17,601, have a history of diabetes," [Health Minister Harsh] Vardhan said in a meeting with a group of federal ministers.

[...] Mucormycosis causes blackening or discolouration over the nose, blurred or double vision, chest pain, breathing difficulties and coughing of blood. Coronavirus patients with diabetes and a weakened immune system are particularly prone to attack.

[...] Health experts say India's poor air quality and excessive dust in cities, like Mumbai, make it easier for the fungi to thrive, terming the recent spike in cases a matter of "serious concern".

"We and most mainstream hospitals have seen more mucormycosis cases in the past month than in the previous five years," Dr Arvinder Soin, chairman of the Medanta Liver Transplant Institute at Gurugram, told Al Jazeera.

[...] Dr Sumit Mrig, who heads the ENT department at Max Smart Super Speciality Hospital in New Delhi [said] they used to see one or two such cases in a week before the second wave of the pandemic. [...] at present, we are seeing five to six such patients on a daily basis," Mrig said.

[...] "Apart from the high mortality associated with disease which rapidly spreads from nose and sinuses to the eye and brain in a span of 24 to 48 hours, if treatment is not initiated on time, the patient can lose his eyesight. Once it involves the brain, the mortality is approximately 80 percent," Mrig added.


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Friday June 11, @09:17PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the www.or.not.to.www dept.

Google is going to stop hiding urls in Chrome. Apparently it didn't pan out the way they wanted it to. I guess they wanted to make it less complicated or less confusing for the users but it turned out to be a security issue?

Google Chrome will once again show a website's full URL:

Google has now punted and admitted the idea didn't work as it expected. "Deleted simplified domain experiment," wrote tech lead Emily Stark. "This experiment didn't move relevant security metrics, so we're not going to launch it."

The change is now live in Chrome 91, with only the "https://" hidden by default. However, it's easy to show that as well simply by right- or ctrl-clicking on the omnibox and selecting "always show full URLs," as Android Police pointed out.

Details in bug report update.


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Friday June 11, @06:54PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the bureaucracy dept.

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2021/06/amazon-ebay-fight-legislation-that-would-unmask-third-party-sellers/

Amazon and a who's who of online-only retailers are trying to kill proposed federal and state legislation that would make the companies disclose contact information for third-party sellers.

The bills would force Amazon and others to verify the identities of third-party sellers and provide consumers with ways to contact the stores. The proposed legislation is pitting brick-and-mortar retailers—including Home Depot, Walgreens, and JC Penney, which support the bills—against online retailers like Amazon, Etsy, eBay, Poshmark, and others, which argue that the legislation would harm small sellers.

The bills come as brick-and-mortar retailers lost ground to online retailers throughout the pandemic—in 2020, 20 percent of consumer retail purchases were made online, compared with about 14 percent in 2019. But the legislation is also being proposed in response to a slew of counterfeit, stolen, and dangerous items that have appeared on marketplace sites.

[...] A survey of Amazon sellers found that 70 percent have work outside of their Amazon businesses, suggesting that they, too, run the business from their homes.

[...] "When you look at the unintended consequences of sellers trying to choose between their privacy and their safety and their livelihood, the result is you're going to have fewer sellers online—and that really just benefits the Walmarts and Home Depots and the Lowes," Alexis Marvel, a spokesperson for the Makers and Merchants Coalition, told Axios.


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posted by janrinok on Friday June 11, @04:14PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

Researchers create quantum microscope that can see the impossible:

Professor Warwick Bowen, from UQ's Quantum Optics Lab and the ARC Centre of Excellence for Engineered Quantum Systems (EQUS), said it was the first entanglement-based sensor with performance beyond the best possible existing technology.

"This breakthrough will spark all sorts of new technologies -- from better navigation systems to better MRI machines, you name it," Professor Bowen said.

"Entanglement is thought to lie at the heart of a quantum revolution.

(...) "The quantum entanglement in our microscope provides 35 per cent improved clarity without destroying the cell, allowing us to see minute biological structures that would otherwise be invisible.

"The benefits are obvious -- from a better understanding of living systems, to improved diagnostic technologies." Professor Bowen said there were potentially boundless opportunities for quantum entanglement in technology. "Entanglement is set to revolutionise computing, communication and sensing," he said.

(...) "This opens the door for some wide-ranging technological revolutions."

Journal Reference:
Catxere A. Casacio, Lars S. Madsen, Alex Terrasson, et al. Quantum-enhanced nonlinear microscopy, Nature (DOI: 10.1038/s41586-021-03528-w)


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posted by martyb on Friday June 11, @01:46PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the it's-only-a-game...of-cat-and-mouse dept.

Hackers Steal Wealth of Data from Game Giant EA:

"You have full capability of exploiting on all EA services," the hackers claimed in various posts on underground hacking forums viewed by Motherboard. A source with access to the forums, some of which are locked from public view, provided Motherboard with screenshots of the messages.

[...] In those forum posts the hackers said they have taken the source code for FIFA 21, as well as code for its matchmaking server. The hackers also said they have obtained source code and tools for the Frostbite engine, which powers a number of EA games including Battlefield. Other stolen information includes proprietary EA frameworks and software development kits (SDKs), bundles of code that can make game development more streamlined. In all, the hackers say they have 780gb[sic] of data, and are advertising it for sale in various underground hacking forum posts viewed by Motherboard.

[...] EA confirmed to Motherboard that it had suffered a data breach and that the information listed by the hackers was the data that was stolen.

It's not like they could use the source and SDK to release a new game. What's the point? To better understand how the games work and write cheats? Break the servers? How much is that really worth?

Also at SecurityWeek, BBC, and Ars Technica.


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Friday June 11, @11:11AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the That's-no-moon dept.

Psyche 16 may not be solid metal, after all. News at Phys.org:

The widely studied metallic asteroid known as 16 Psyche was long thought to be the exposed iron core of a small planet that failed to form during the earliest days of the solar system. But new University of Arizona-led research suggests that the asteroid might not be as metallic or dense as once thought, and hints at a much different origin story.

Scientists are interested in 16 Psyche because if its presumed origins are true, it would provide an opportunity to study an exposed planetary core up close. NASA is scheduled to launch its Psyche mission in 2022 and arrive at the asteroid in 2026.

UArizona undergraduate student David Cantillo is lead author of a new paper published in The Planetary Science Journal that proposes 16 Psyche is 82.5% metal, 7% low-iron pyroxene and 10.5% carbonaceous chondrite that was likely delivered by impacts from other asteroids. Cantillo and his collaborators estimate that 16 Psyche's bulk density—also known as porosity, which refers to how much empty space is found within its body—is around 35%.

These estimates differ from past analyses of 16 Psyche's composition that led researchers to estimate it could contain as much as 95% metal and be much denser.

Wikipedia entry on 16 Psyche.

Precipitated a collapse of other unknown psyche things, like cryptocurrency.

Journal Reference:
David C. Cantillo, et al. Constraining the Regolith Composition of Asteroid (16) Psyche via Laboratory Visible Near-infrared Spectroscopy - IOPscience, The Planetary Science Journal (DOI: 10.3847/PSJ/abf63b)


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Friday June 11, @08:33AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the I-quit! dept.

Member of FDA’s expert panel resigns over Alzheimer’s therapy approval:

Following the Food and Drug Administration's polarizing authorization of the Alzheimer's therapy Aduhelm on Monday, a member of an agency advisory committee that recommended against the drug's approval has resigned.

Neurologist Joel Perlmutter of Washington University in St. Louis, a member of the FDA's expert panel for nervous system therapies, told STAT in an email that he had quit the committee on Monday "due to this ruling by the FDA without further discussion with our advisory committee."

The advisory committee, which convened in November, couldn't have been more openly skeptical of the drug, also known as aducanumab. Ten of the 11 panelists found that there was not enough evidence to show it could slow cognitive decline. The 11th voted "uncertain."


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Friday June 11, @06:02AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the if-you-can't-beat-'em,-buy-'em? dept.

Intel (INTC) Reportedly Offers Over $2 Billion To Acquire the Fabless Semiconductor SiFive as the Consolidation Trend in the Industry Is Nowhere Close to Slowing Down

[According] to Bloomberg, Intel has reportedly offered over $2 billion to acquire the fabless semiconductor SiFive, a provider of commercial RISC-V processor IP and silicon solutions based on the RISC-V instruction set architecture.

Should this deal become a reality, it would mark the climax of growing bonhomie between Intel and SiFive. For instance, back in 2018, Intel was one of the participants in the Series C funding round of SiFive. Thereafter, in March 2021, SiFive announced a collaboration with the Intel Foundry Business (IFB) to develop innovative new RISC-V computing platforms.

Of course, unlike legacy Instruction Set Architectures (ISAs), RISC-V's proponents believe that it addresses the skyrocketing cost of designing and manufacturing increasingly complex new chip architectures, given that that the ISA is layered, extensible, and flexible. It is hardly surprising, therefore, that some believe RISC-V to be the future.

Bear in mind that SiFive was last valued at $500 million, as per the data available at PitchBook. This means that Intel would be paying a premium of over 300 percent relative to SiFive's 2020 valuation.

Previously: SiFive HiFive Unleashed Not as Open as Previously Thought
Qualcomm Invests in RISC-V Startup SiFive
SiFive Announces a RISC-V Core With an Out-of-Order Microarchitecture
GlobalFoundries and SiFive Partner on High Bandwidth Memory (HBM2E)
SiFive to Debut a RISC-V PC for Developers in October
SiFive Announces HiFive Unmatched Mini-ITX Motherboard for RISC-V PCs


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Friday June 11, @03:33AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the dram-of-cyber-libel dept.

SK Hynix admits to DRAM defects, smacks down rumour it botched big batches

South Korean chip maker SK Hynix has admitted some of its DRAM components included defects, though it says accounts of the issue are overblown.

[...] The impact of the defects may be less substantial than the damage done to SK Hynix's reputation, as South Korean newswire Yonhap reports that rumours have circulated to the effect that 240,000 wafers of DRAM are defective. SK Hynix is thought to have the capacity to produce around 1.8 million wafers a month, around 80 per cent of which are dedicated to DRAM. The whispering therefore describes a serious situation at a time the world's hunger for silicon can't be satiated.

SK Hynix's missive to The Register continued: "The scale of the potential losses mentioned in the rumour is absolutely not true and exaggerated."

The company has therefore requested a police investigation into whoever is spreading this gossip.

SK Hynix Admits to Some DRAM Production Flaws, Calls the Cops

SK Hynix admitted that, while it was dealing with some faulty DRAMs, the damages did not impact 240,000 wafers. The company claimed that these rumors are meant to injure its reputation and called the local police to file libel and misinformation charges against its unknown assailant, thus spurring a police investigation into the rumors.


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Friday June 11, @01:04AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the sharp-pointy-lines dept.

GameStop stock falls sharply amid 5M-share sales plan, SEC investigation:

GameStop's quarterly earnings report, released last night, contained relatively good news for the embattled retailer, including a smaller-than-expected operating loss and the company's first year-over-year increase in quarterly revenues in years. But GameStop's heavily inflated stock price is down significantly in morning trading on news that the company plans to sell more shares and the announcement that it is cooperating with a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into the "meme stock" phenomenon.

In what CEO George Sherman called a "strong start to the year," GameStop's net sales were up over 25 percent to $1.3 billion in the fiscal quarter ending on April 30. That's despite "a roughly 12 percent reduction in the global store fleet due to our strategic de-densification efforts and the continued store closures in Europe during the quarter due to the COVID-19 pandemic."

Previously:
GameStop (The Stock) and GameStop (The Retailer) Continue to be Worlds Apart
GameStop Shares Rise, Fall and Rise Again in Roller-Coaster Day of Trading
The Complete Moron's Guide to GameStop's Stock Roller Coaster


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Thursday June 10, @10:35PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the feel-the-spin dept.

Google to stop treating EU antitrust remedy as a “promotional opportunity”:

Google and the European Union have been fighting for several years over Android's default search engine. Just like when the EU took issue with Microsoft bundling Internet Explorer with Windows, the EU Antitrust enforcers don't want Google using its Android operating system monopoly to prop up Google Search and Google Chrome. The solution the EU came to—just like it did with Windows—is a "ballot" system that pops up during setup and asks users to pick a starting browser and search engine from a list. The only problem? Google was charging companies to appear in this list. It was basically an ad vector. In a blog post this week, Google says it will stop doing that.


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Thursday June 10, @08:04PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the get-off-my-lawn! dept.

Las Vegas's new strategy for tackling drought – banning 'useless grass':

A new Nevada law will outlaw about 40% of the grass in the Las Vegas area in an effort to conserve water amid a drought that is drying up the region's primary water source: the Colorado River.

Other cities and states around the US have enacted temporary bans on lawns that must be watered, but legislation signed Friday by the state's governor, Steve Sisolak, makes Nevada the first in the nation to enact a permanent ban on certain categories of grass. Sisolak said last week that anyone flying into Las Vegas viewing the "bathtub rings" that delineate how high Lake Mead's water levels used to be can see that conservation is needed.

"It's incumbent upon us for the next generation to be more conscious of conservation and our natural resources, water being particularly important," he said.

The ban targets what the Southern Nevada Water Authority calls "non-functional turf". It applies to grass that virtually no one uses at office parks, street medians and the entrances to housing developments. It excludes single-family homes, parks and golf courses.

The measure will require the replacement of about 8 sq miles (21 sq km) of grass in the metro Las Vegas area. By ripping it out, water officials estimate the region can reduce annual water consumption by 15% and save about 14 gallons (53 liters) per person a day in a region with a population of about 2.3 million.

If you want grass, go live where grass grows naturally.


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Thursday June 10, @05:24PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

Rocket in place to send 3 crew to Chinese space station:

The rocket that will send three crew members to start living on China's new orbiting space station has been moved onto the launch pad ahead of its planned blastoff next week. The three astronauts plan to spend three months on the space station doing spacewalks, construction and maintenance work and science experiments.

The main section of the Tianhe, or Heavenly Harmony, station was launched into orbit on April 29, and a cargo spacecraft sent up last month carried fuel, food and equipment to the station in preparation for the crewed mission.

The Long March-2F Y12 rocket carrying the Shenzhou-12 spaceship was transferred to the launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China on Wednesday, the China Manned Space Engineering Office said in a brief statement.

The space agency plans a total of 11 launches through the end of next year to deliver two laboratory modules to expand the 70-ton station, along with supplies and crew members. Next week's launch will be the third of those, and the first of the four crewed missions planned.

[...] China said in March the astronauts training for the upcoming crewed missions were a mix of space travel veterans and newcomers and included some women. The first station crew will be all male, though women will be part of future crews, according to Yang Liwei, who orbited Earth in China's first crewed mission in 2003 and is now an official at the space agency.


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Thursday June 10, @02:52PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

CHIME Telescope Detects More Than 500 Mysterious Fast Radio Bursts From Outer Space:

To catch sight of a fast radio burst is to be extremely lucky in where and when you point your radio dish. Fast radio bursts, or FRBs, are oddly bright flashes of light, registering in the radio band of the electromagnetic spectrum, that blaze for a few milliseconds before vanishing without a trace.

These brief and mysterious beacons have been spotted in various and distant parts of the universe, as well as in our own galaxy. Their origins are unknown, and their appearance is unpredictable. Since the first was discovered in 2007, radio astronomers have only caught sight of around 140 bursts in their scopes.

Now, a large stationary radio telescope in British Columbia has nearly quadrupled the number of fast radio bursts discovered to date. The telescope, known as CHIME, for the Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment, has detected 535 new fast radio bursts during its first year of operation, between 2018 and 2019.

Scientists with the CHIME Collaboration, including researchers at MIT, have assembled the new signals in the telescope's first FRB catalog, which they will present this week at the American Astronomical Society Meeting.

The new catalog significantly expands the current library of known FRBs, and is already yielding clues as to their properties. For instance, the newly discovered bursts appear to fall in two distinct classes: those that repeat, and those that don't. Scientists identified 18 FRB sources that burst repeatedly, while the rest appear to be one-offs. The repeaters also look different, with each burst lasting slightly longer and emitting more focused radio frequencies than bursts from single, nonrepeating FRBs.

These observations strongly suggest that repeaters and one-offs arise from separate mechanisms and astrophysical sources. With more observations, astronomers hope soon to pin down the extreme origins of these curiously bright signals.

"Before CHIME, there were less than 100 total discovered FRBs; now, after one year of observation, we've discovered hundreds more," says CHIME member Kaitlyn Shin, a graduate student in MIT's Department of Physics. "With all these sources, we can really start getting a picture of what FRBs look like as a whole, what astrophysics might be driving these events, and how they can be used to study the universe going forward."


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Thursday June 10, @12:30PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the this-is-infrastructure dept.

From Spiked:

If life ever returns to normal, one thing no one will miss from the lockdown era is the 'TV goldfish'. For over a year, we've watched the disembodied, pixelated faces of contributors to live TV mouth their words out of sync with their audio, gulping away as if in a private fish tank. This isn't the exception for internet video, it's the norm.

John Day is one of the internet's greybeard founding fathers. For a decade he has been advancing a set of improvements to the current mainstream internet protocols. His proposals – called RINA (Recursive Internetwork Architecture) – revisit and build on Louis Pouzin's founding concept of datagrams (data packets). Simplifying these features allowed the original inter-networking protocols (IP) to get out of the door in the 1980s and 1990s, and allowed for the rapid growth of the internet. But the current system we have – TCP/IP – is holding back new innovation.

See also: Internet outage illustrates lack of resilience at heart of critical services
The Guardian view on the internet outage: we need resilience, not just efficiency


Original Submission