Daily Report: A Net Neutrality Setback for Facebook in India
In the United States, the social media giant has been an advocate of equal treatment of all Internet content. In India, regulators who share that belief have effectively blocked a free Facebook service.
Despite its form factor, and the fact that Nintendo is not trying to win the console wars in terms of raw power, the Switch is one of the most compelling and exciting ways to play video games. Being able to have a portable console that can quickly switch to a living room experience is pretty great. And there’s no denying that the exclusive games Nintendo has to offer are pretty awesome, too.
But it’s that mobility I want to focus on, mostly because the Switch is such a solid option to play games on while on the move.
It all comes down to what you like to play, of course. If you prefer to play games that focus on quick sessions, then playing the variety of titles available on iOS and Android will probably suffice. Meanwhile, the Switch does have plenty of similar games, but there are plenty of bigger, longer games to choose from.
Which means it can also come down to how often you play games, and when you play them. Playing a mobile game on the train or other transit options, for instance, might make more sense than hopping into a session of Super Mario Odyssey. But! A quick match of Mario Tennis Aces, or a building session in Super Mario Maker 2.
There are options, which is why the lighter version of the Switch, aptly named the Switch Lite, could prove to be a pretty popular device. Especially for those who do like to play games, and might want a bit more to choose from their gaming libraries.
Plus, the Switch Lite is even better designed to be a portable device -- because it can't connect to a TV for that living room experience. It's lighter in the hand, and the controls can't be removed from the main unit like they can with the Switch. Nintendo doesn't want this to be its primary portable gaming device, but, at the same time, it could probably fit the bill for most people.
That's what I'm curious to know, especially for the folks who have already been carrying around a Switch proper. The smaller price tag of the Switch Lite already makes it a worthwhile option, so do you plan on picking one up and making it your primary mobile gaming console while out and about? Let me know!
We've compiled a top 10 list of our favorite iOS apps to hit the App Store in June 2019. The apps include Radio In: Live Tuner FM, Voice Over Video, Pinc, Py, Tilde, Colorize, Twitterific, Rescue Wings, Drop Drop!, and HELI100. Which app is your favorite?
We've compiled a top 10 list of our favorite Android apps to hit the Play Store in June 2019. The apps highlighted in this video include Appy Weather, MIUI-ify, Pocket Mode, Curator, Spotify Stations, Firefox ScreenshotGo Beta, One UI Icon Pack, Onslot Car, Magnibox, and The Bonfire: Foresaken Lands. Which app is your favorite?
Highlights of the day: Foxconn deployments show semiconductor ambitions
Foxconn is not satisifed with its role as merely the biggest EMS provider in thew world, as its latest deployments have demonstrated its ambitions in building an ecosystem that includes semiconductor and brand businesses. Meanwhile, some IC desingers expect shipments to Huawei to return to normal soon to support's Chinese vendor's new smartphones.
Foxconn likely to rely on new acquisitions to build semiconductor ecosystem
Foxconn Technology Group, gearing up to build its own semiconductor ecosystem, is expected to activate a new round of acquisition deals to fill up the gaps in its supply chain, according to industry sources.
Highlights of the day: Apple reportedly suspends AR/VR HMD project
Apple may have disbanded its team for the development of AR/VR HMDs (head-mounted displays), but that does not mean that the vendor is negative about the future of AR/VR technology. The 5G connectivity is said to be not mature enough for AR/VR HMD devices, but lens module maker Largan Pecision believes 5G smartphones will shore up demand for premium feature, such as better cameras.
eCloudvalley expects surging revenues in next 3 years
Taiwan-based eCloudvalley Digital Technology, an AWS service provider in Taiwan, is looking to more than double its revenues every year for the next three years and for the next stage, the company will focus on pushing big data management and analysis solutions, said company president Linda Lin.
This week’s 5 best new Android apps & games (JULY 14)
The Google Play store is full of awesome apps that can help you with tasks or simply help you take a break and relax with an engaging game. But how do you know what ones you should try? We can help you with that! Every week, we will share awesome new apps that we think ...
Mini Review: The Motorola Moto G7 Power is a Magnificent Battery Beast
The Moto G7 is a solid budget smartphone, one lacking many of the usual budget pitfalls. It has a nice display, great build quality, speedy performance, and glorious stock Android. It does have its issues, like poor update support and a weak camera, but it’s a great buy for $299.99. Even better, Motorola’s software additions ...
Europe Relies on American GPS as Its Own Galileo System Suffers Massive Outage
An anonymous reader shares a report: Europe's Galileo satellite network -- used by satnavs, financial institutions and more -- is in the throes of a huge outage. The system has been down since Friday meaning that travelers (and others) in Europe have instead had to fall back on the American Global Positioning System (GPS) -- or even Russia or Chinese systems. Galileo has been struck by what is being described as a "technical incident related to its ground infrastructure", and it's not clear when the situation will be remedied. The European GNSS Agency (Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency, or GSA) says that the incident affects only the Galileo initial navigation and timing services. It stresses that "the SAR service -- used for locating and helping people in distress situations for example at sea or mountains -- is unaffected and remains operational".
Huawei is planning major layoffs at its US research labs as it struggles under the weight of the Commerce Department blacklisting, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday. From a report: The embattled Chinese telecom's Futurewei R&D subsidiary employs about 850 people in Texas, California and Washington state. The layoffs may number in the hundreds, according to the Journal, which cited anonymous sources. A few people apparently already know that they'll be dismissed, but further cuts are expected and some Chinese workers are being allowed to continue with Huawei if they return home.
Qualcomm's New Snapdragon 855 Plus is a Natural Fit For Tomorrow's Gaming Phones
Qualcomm has announced a mid-year refresh of its flagship Snapdragon 855 chipset. The new Snapdragon 855 Plus is further optimized for gaming, VR, AI, and 5G connectivity. From a report: It sticks to the same overall design and chip layout as the 855, but Qualcomm says the Plus's eight-core Kryo CPU runs at higher peak clock speeds of up to 2.96GHz. But more important to gamers is a 15 percent performance improvement from the Adreno 640 GPU. That will likely result in the 855 Plus making its way into the next wave of gaming-focused smartphones like those we've seen from Asus, Razer, and other companies. As for AI and VR improvements, Qualcomm is continuing to talk up its fourth-generation AI Engine that's capable of "more than 7 trillion operations per second." The Snapdragon 855 Plus will deliver "best-in-class cellular performance, superior coverage and all-day battery life in premium 5G devices," according to the company. It's still using two separate modems to get there, however, with both a Snapdragon X24 LTE 4G modem and Qualcomm's X50 5G modem on board. I guess we won't see a more efficient approach until the inevitable Snapdragon 865.
A Cell Tower In the Swiss Alps Is Struck By Lightning More Than 100 Times a Year
Wave723 quotes IEEE Spectrum: Atop a rocky peak in the Swiss Alps sits a telecommunications tower that gets struck by lightning more than 100 times a year, making it perhaps the world's most frequently struck object. Taking note of the remarkable consistency with which lightning hits this 124-meter structure, researchers have adorned it with instruments for a front-row view of these violent electric discharges...
To anyone who has witnessed a lightning strike, everything seems to happen all at once. But [New Mexico Tech's Mark] Stanley's sensor captures several gigabytes of data about the many separate pulses that occur within each flash. Those data can be made into a video that replays, microsecond by microsecond, how "channels" of lightning form in the clouds.... [T]hey intend to use data gathered by the tower's many instruments (which include a collection of six antennas called a lightning mapping array, two Rogowski coils to measure current, two B-Dot sensors to measure the current time-derivative, broadband electric and magnetic field sensors, and a high-speed camera) to reconstruct the total path of strikes soon after they happen, tracing the electromagnetic radiation all the way back to its original source...
The Santis team's work has held particular relevance for wind farm operators. That's because most strikes recorded at the tower are examples of upward lightning -- which travels from ground-to-cloud instead of cloud-to-ground.
They hope to eventually help make progress on predicting where lightning will strike.
And by the end of this year, the team at the tower expect to record their 1,000th lightning strike.
Nomads Travel To America's Backroads and Walmarts -- to Stock Amazon's Shelves
The Verge recently profiled "a small group of merchants who travel the backroads of America searching clearance aisles and dying chains for goods to sell on Amazon.
"Some live out of RVs and vans, moving from town to town, only stopping long enough to pick the stores clean and ship their wares to Amazon's fulfillment centers."
The majority of goods sold on Amazon are not sold by Amazon itself, but by more than 2 million merchants who use the company's platform as their storefront and infrastructure. Some of these sellers make their own products, while others practice arbitrage, buying and reselling wares from other retailers. Amazon has made this easy to do, first by launching Fulfillment by Amazon, which allows sellers to send their goods to company warehouses and have Amazon handle storage and delivery, and then with an app that lets sellers scan goods to instantly check whether they'd be profitable to sell on the site. A few sellers, like [Chris] Anderson, have figured out that the best way to find lucrative products is to be mobile, scouring remote stores and chasing hot-selling items from coast to coast.
"It's almost like I'm the front end of the business and Amazon is just an extension of my arm," says Sean-Patrick Iles, a nomad who spent weeks driving cross-country during Toys R Us' final days. It was a feeding frenzy Anderson and others also hit the road for...
For Anderson, the holy grail is the Bounce Dryer Bar, a $5 plastic oblong you affix to the dryer rather than adding a dryer sheet to each load. Now discontinued, a two-pack sells on Amazon for $300. Discontinued nail polish, Pop-Tarts, hair curling products: Anderson has chased them all when the scanner has shown them fetching multiples of their normal price. He once hunted a particular brand of discontinued dental floss across the Big Lots of America, buying six-packs for 99 cents and selling them on Amazon for over $100 apiece.
According to the article, Anderson "thinks the constant travel is part of why his marriage ended..."
IQ Test Scores Increased For a Century. But Did it Help?
IQ test scores have been increasing for 100 years, reports a senior journalist at BBC Future. He also writes that there's evidence "that we may have already reached the end of this era -- with the rise in IQs stalling and even reversing."
But this raises an even larger question: did a century of increasing scores on IQ tests bring benefits to society?
You might assume that the more intelligent you are, the more rational you are, but it's not quite this simple... Consider the abundant literature on our cognitive biases. Something that is presented as "95% fat-free" sounds healthier than "5% fat", for instance -- a phenomenon known as the framing bias. It is now clear that a high IQ does little to help you avoid this kind of flaw, meaning that even the smartest people can be swayed by misleading messages. People with high IQs are also just as susceptible to the confirmation bias -- our tendency to only consider the information that supports our pre-existing opinions, while ignoring facts that might contradict our views. That's a serious issue when we start talking about things like politics.
Nor can a high IQ protect you from the sunk cost bias -- the tendency to throw more resources into a failing project, even if it would be better to cut your losses -- a serious issue in any business. (This was, famously, the bias that led the British and French governments to continue funding Concorde planes, despite increasing evidence that it would be a commercial disaster.) Highly intelligent people are also not much better at tests of "temporal discounting", which require you to forgo short-term gains for greater long-term benefits. That's essential, if you want to ensure your comfort for the future.
Besides a resistance to these kinds of biases, there are also more general critical thinking skills -- such as the capacity to challenge your assumptions, identify missing information, and look for alternative explanations for events before drawing conclusions. These are crucial to good thinking, but they do not correlate very strongly with IQ, and do not necessarily come with higher education. One study in the USA found almost no improvement in critical thinking throughout many people's degrees. Given these looser correlations, it would make sense that the rise in IQs has not been accompanied by a similarly miraculous improvement in all kinds of decision making.
The article concludes that "this kind of thinking can be taught -- but it needs deliberate and careful instruction," and suggests "we might also make a more concerted and deliberate effort to improve those other essential skills too that do not necessarily come with a higher IQ..."
"Ideally, we might then start to see a steep rise in rationality -- and even wisdom... If so, the temporary blip in our IQ scores need not represent the end of an intellectual golden age -- but its beginning.
Chess Grandmaster Caught Cheating in Tournament With Hidden Cellphone in Bathroom
"The World Chess Federation (FIDE) announced Saturday that it caught chess grandmaster Igors Rausis cheating during a tournament in France," writes Bleacher Report.
According to ESPN.com, the FIDE noted that Rausis was "caught red-handed using his phone during a game." A cellphone was found in a toilet that Rausis had used during the competition, and Rausis later admitted to using it to cheat.
Per Chess.com, Rausis said the following regarding the scandal: "I simply lost my mind yesterday. I confirmed the fact of using my phone during the game by written [statement]. What could I say more? ... At least what I committed yesterday is a good lesson, not for me -- I played my last game of chess already...."
The 58-year-old Rausis was born in the Soviet Union and currently represents the Czech Republic after previously representing Latvia and Bangladesh. Rausis became a grandmaster in 1992, and he is the No. 53 ranked chess player in the world, according to the FIDE.
It's not the first time this has happened. A Georgian national chess champion was also found to be cheating with an iPhone hidden in a toilet stall more than four years ago. But in this case, "The 58-year-old Latvian-Czech grandmaster had raised suspicions after he increased his rating in recent years to almost 2700," reports Chess.com.
The director-general of the FIDE said they've now reported Rausis to the French police, and that they'd been suspicious of him for a long time.
"It is impossible to completely eliminate the cheating, but the risk of being caught has increased significantly, and the penalties will become much more significant."
"At its worst, it's a waste of precious space, an annoyance, a solution to a problem that doesn't exist any more," complains Daniel Colin James, a writer, developer, product manager. In a recent Medium essay, he called the Caps Lops key "an unnecessary holdover from a time when typewriters were the bleeding edge of consumer technology" -- and even contacted the man who invented the Caps Lock key (Doug Kerr, who had been a Bell Labs telephone engineer in the 1960s):
I reached out to Doug about his invention, and he responded that while he still uses Caps Lock regularly, "we don't often today have a reason to type addresses in all caps, which was the context in which the need for the key first manifested itself to me."
I would go a step further, and say that most of us don't often have a reason to type anything in all caps today... [A] toggle with the same functionality could easily be activated in a number of different ways for those who really want to write things in all capital letters. (Say, for example, double tapping the Shift key, like how it already works on your phone.) Caps Lock is one of the largest keys on a modern keyboard, and it's in one of the best spots -- right next to the home row. It's taking up prime real estate, and it's not paying its rent any more.
Have you ever been in the middle of typing something, and then you get the uneasy feeling thaT YOU FLEW TOO CLOSE TO THE SUN AND NOW YOU HAVE TO REWRITE YOUR WORDS? You're not alone. Accidentally activating Caps Lock is such a relatable mistake that it's the introductory example for a research paper about accessibility issues with modern computer interfaces. Caps Lock is so frequently engaged unintentionally that password fields in software have to include a "Caps Lock is on" warning.
I've heard of people re-mapping their keyboards so the Caps Lock key becomes "Esc" or "Ctrl." But maybe it comes down to consumers. If you were shopping for a computer and were told that it shipped without a Caps Lock key -- would you be more or less likely to buy it?
Share your own thoughts in the comments. Is it time to get rid of the Caps Lock key?
Sprint: LG G Flex Will Launch Online on January 31 for $299 on Contract
Starting today, Sprint customers can pre-order the unique LG G Flex smartphone for $299 online with a two year contract. By pre-ordering between now and January 31st, customers will receive a complimentary Quickwindow Folio Case, which is valued at $60. Sprint…
Motorola Announces Moto X Launch in UK, France, and Germany on February 1
Certain European consumers interested in the Moto X smartphone from Motorola will soon have their chance to purchase the excellent handset. Expected to launch on February 1st, Motorola will sell its iconic Moto X device in Black or White in…
Alan Turing, Computing Pioneer, Will Be Honored on Britain’s £50 Note
During his lifetime, the mathematician and computer pioneer’s reputation was overshadowed by a conviction under Britain’s Victorian laws against homosexuality, and his war work remained a secret until decades later.
UK says no way to US calls for no Huawei on 5G networks: MPs find 'no technical grounds' to exclude Chinese giant
Plus: American biz bods could say yes way to Zhengfei... in '2 to 4 weeks'
The UK's Science and Technology Select Committee said it can't find any "technical grounds" for chopping Huawei out of the UK's 5G and other telco networks, but said government should consider "ethical" issues and its relationship with "allies".…
Virgin Media blocks Imgur, literally tens of people rage at UK ISP
They blame IWF-related error, IWF says 'it's not us, it's you'
UK internet service provider Virgin Media has insisted it does not block entire domains "as a matter of course" after it stopped its customers from viewing the whole of Imgur this morning – on the say-so of the Internet Watch Foundation.…