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.
Samsung knows that you know it's launching a new smartphone soon. Or, to be specific, several different smartphones. The Galaxy S10e, the Galaxy S10, and the Galaxy S10+ have leaked out several times already, and that's before the February 20 unveiling Samsung has scheduled. And since Samsung understands that its upcoming devices aren't exactly a secret, why not just let people start signing up for them?
Earlier today, Samsung launched a dedicated website that will allow folks interested in the upcoming Galaxy S10 to reserve their interest in the new handsets. Samsung is quick to point out that the trade-in offer it has in place --which can get you up to $550 off a new Galaxy S10-- isn't available for every model, but it's not breaking down which of the new handsets won't be covered just yet.
It's certainly a unique move! If only because the company hasn't officially announced anything yet.
Samsung's reservation page will let potential customers show their interest in a new smartphone, going as far as to select which carrier you plan on using the device on (or just choosing unlocked). And then you can select your eligible device to trade in and see what you'll get towards the new phone.
Now, as my colleague Alex points out: "It's worth noting that reserving a Galaxy S10 won't automatically place an order for a device when sales begin. Instead, you'll have 72 hours after the device goes on sale to complete your purchase. If you don't order within 72 hours of the start of sales, you'll lose your reserved priority for placing an order."
I am very curious to see the numbers behind this when it's all said and done, but I wouldn't be surprised if Samsung never actually confirms anything of that sort. Still, this is an interesting idea to drum up hype for a device that isn't even announced yet. Plus, knowing what you're going to get for your new smartphone, which doesn't launch for about a month, is a pretty awesome way to plan ahead.
So I have to know: Are you planning on reserving your spot for the Galaxy S10? By now we know what to expect from the devices for the most part, so it feels like a pretty safe bet. Still, it may be worth waiting to play with one of the new devices in person before choosing to fork over a lot of money. What about you? Reserving now or waiting until launch? Let me know!
Acer expects gaming and ultrathin notebooks to serve as growth drivers in Thailand
Gaming and ultrathin notebooks are expected to become the growth driver of Acer's operation in Thailand, particularly gaming models, as e-sports has been gainign popularity among the country's young consumers, according to deputy director of Acer Thailand's retail business, Supong Tangtongbenjasin.
5 web browser alternatives to Chrome and Firefox on Android
Chrome, Firefox, and Samsung Internet are great browsers for everyday users including myself. For most, these browsers have everything they need from robust rendering systems, incognito browsing and great speed. However, if you’re curious about what other browsers may be available that offer different and unique features, here are a few lesser know browsers that ...
DEAL: the Lametric Time smart clock is now $40 off
LaMetric Time is an Internet-connected clock that makes your home or work space unique with charming clock faces, controls smart home with a glance, tracks digital metrics in real time, creates music atmosphere with the dance of pixels. It’s also an awesome clock! Using promo code 19840750 at checkout, you’ll be able to grab the LaMetric Time ...
Yes, we're all overwhelmed with email. One recent survey suggested that the average American's inbox has 199 unread messages. But volume isn't an excuse for not replying. Ignoring email is an act of incivility, reads an opinion piece. From the story: "I'm too busy to answer your email" really means "Your email is not a priority for me right now." That's a popular justification for neglecting your inbox: It's full of other people's priorities. But there's a growing body of evidence that if you care about being good at your job, your inbox should be a priority. When researchers compiled a huge database of the digital habits of teams at Microsoft, they found that the clearest warning sign of an ineffective manager was being slow to answer emails. Responding in a timely manner shows that you are conscientious -- organized, dependable and hardworking. And that matters. In a comprehensive analysis of people in hundreds of occupations, conscientiousness was the single best personality predictor of job performance. (It turns out that people who are rude online tend to be rude offline, too.)
I'm not saying you have to answer every email. Your brain is not just sitting there waiting to be picked. If senders aren't considerate enough to do their homework and ask a question you're qualified to answer, you don't owe them anything back. How do you know if an email you've received -- or even more important, one you're considering writing -- doesn't deserve a response? After all, sending an inappropriate email can be as rude as ignoring a polite one. [...] Whatever boundaries you choose, don't abandon your inbox altogether. Not answering emails today is like refusing to take phone calls in the 1990s or ignoring letters in the 1950s. Email is not household clutter and you're not Marie Kondo. Ping!
'Digital Gangster' Facebook Intentionally and Knowingly Violated UK Privacy and Competition Rules, British Lawmakers Say
British lawmakers on Sunday accused Facebook of having "intentionally and knowingly violated both data privacy and anti-competition laws" in the country, and they called for investigations into the social media giant's business practices. From a report: The sharp rebuke came in a 108-page report written by members of Parliament, who in 2017 began a wide-ranging study of Facebook and the spread of malicious content online. They concluded that the United Kingdom should adopt new regulations so lawmakers can hold Facebook and its tech peers in Silicon Valley accountable for digital misdeeds. "Companies like Facebook should not be allowed to behave like 'digital gangsters' in the online world," U.K. lawmakers said in their report, "considering themselves to be ahead of and beyond the law."
Google Fixing Chrome API To Prevent Incognito Mode Detection
AmiMoJo writes: When browsing the web with Google Chrome, some sites are using a method to determine if a visitor is in a regular browsing session or in incognito mode. As this can be considered a breach of privacy, Google will be changing how a particular API works so that web sites can no longer utilize this technique.
Chrome supports the FileSystem API, which allows sites to create a virtual file system that lives within the sandbox of the browser. This allows sites that utilize large assets, such as online games, to download these assets to a virtual file system so that they do not have to download them each time they are needed. Currently the FileSystem API is not available in incognito sessions, because it leaves files behind and could be considered a privacy risk. Currently the API doesn't work in incognito mode, offering sites a way to check for it. In a Chrome Gerrit post started this week and updated earlier this morning, Google has stated that they are changing the FileSystem API so that it can be used in incognito mode, without the risks to privacy.
NASA's Plans To Build A Human Settlement on The Moon
Nine private spaceflight companies are bidding on contracts to deliver robotic NASA payloads to the moon -- and Thursday NASA said they'd like them to start flying "this calendar year."
Discover magazine reports NASA envisions this "as the first step toward returning to the moon, this time for good."
The first tasks will be to practice launching and landing on the moon, as well as answering questions about its surface... They will test habitation for future crewed missions. They'll prove that they can collect materials from the lunar surface and return them to space or Earth. And they'll establish communication networks between robots on the moon's surface, way stations in lunar orbit, and mission control on Earth.
But NASA also wants to deploy demo technology that can mine the moon's resources "to pave the way for human settlement," Space.com reports:
The main lunar resource to be exploited, at least initially, is water. The lunar surface has lots of this stuff, locked up as ice on the permanently shadowed floors of polar craters. This water will aid lunar settlement and further exploration, and not just by slaking astronauts' thirst, NASA officials say. Water can also be split into its constituent hydrogen and oxygen, the chief components of rocket fuel.
The Commercial Lunar Payload Services program is just part of NASA's broad moon-exploration plan, which prioritizes an open architecture that encourages cooperation with many commercial and international partners. (Indeed, NASA wants to be the commercial landers' first, but not only, customer.) One of the most critical pieces of this plan is a small space station, called the Gateway, which NASA aims to start building in lunar orbit in 2022. Gateway will be a hub for many kinds of lunar exploration, including sorties to the surface by landers both crewed and uncrewed.
If everything goes according to plan, NASA astronauts will take their first such sortie in 2028 -- 56 years after Apollo 17 crewmembers left the last boot prints on the lunar surface
Star of Film 'Downfall' and Widespread 'Hitler Finds Out...' Meme, Dead At 77
The Guardian reports: Bruno Ganz, the Swiss actor who played Adolf Hitler in the film Downfall, has died in Zurich at the age of 77, his agent announced. The actor became internationally renowned for his 2004 portrayal of the German dictator's final days inside his Berlin bunker. In a Guardian review of Downfall Rob Mackie described Ganz as "the most convincing screen Hitler yet: an old, bent, sick dictator with the shaking hands of someone with Parkinson's, alternating between rage and despair in his last days in the bunker...." It is widely believed to be the cinematic footage most often shared online, as well as the cause of one of the world's most productive internet memes.
They're referring to "One climactic scene featuring a Ganz tour de force" that was "relentlessly parodied in widespread 'Hitler Finds Out...' videos, featuring anachronistic subtitles depicting his rage and fury over topical, mundane, or banal events and trivial gossip," explains long-time Slashdot reader Freshly Exhumed:
The spread of the meme was aided inestimably by the Streisand Effect caused when the production company, Constantin Films began sending DMCA takedown notices to YouTube. Eventually the company relented as the parodies constituted strong fair use cases.
When the director of the film was asked about the parodies, he admitted that "I think I've seen about 145 of them! Of course, I have to put the sound down when I watch. Many times the lines are so funny, I laugh out loud, and I'm laughing about the scene that I staged myself! You couldn't get a better compliment as a director."
"New Hampshire lawmakers got an early taste last week of the arguments that manufacturing, technology and telecommunications lobbyists will use to try to hobble and defeat right to repair legislation in 16 states this year," writes long-time Slashdot reader chicksdaddy.
The Security Ledger reports:
Curious children could find themselves dismembered by run-away washing machines. A phalanx of illegally modified lawn tractors and leaf blowers will belch pollution in defiance of the EPA, darkening the sky... At least, that's the scene painted by representatives from some of the U.S.'s biggest industry groups. At a hearing before the New Hampshire House of Representatives Committee on Commerce and Consumer Affairs February 5, they painted a dire picture of the consequences of passing a proposed Digital Fair Repair Act, HB 462, saying the proposed legislation would stifle commerce, leave New Hampshire consumers vulnerable to cyber crime and even physical harm at the hands of clueless owners and inexperienced or unethical repair professionals.
"There is a lot at stake when it comes to Right to Repair, and you could feel those stakes in the room," wrote Nathan Proctor, the head of the right to repair campaign at the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG), in an email statement. "Legislators have their work cut out for them sifting through all the frantic opposition and their deceptive, and at times bizarre, arguments," he wrote.
HB 462 would require original equipment manufacturers that do business in New Hampshire to make the same documentation, parts and tools available to device owners and independent repair professionals as they make available to their licensed or "authorized" repair professionals. Similarly, documentation, tools, and parts needed to reset product (software) locks or digital right management functions following maintenance and repair would also need to be made available to owners and independent repair professionals on "fair and reasonable terms."
Bruce Perens Calls For Open Source, Security, and Data Rights In IBM Ad
Bruce Perens co-founded the Open Source Initiative with Eric Raymond -- and he's also Slashdot reader #3872.
Bruce Perens writes: Here's the IBM ad used to open their Think 2019 conference, featuring Buzz Aldrin, Arianna Huffington, Janelle Monae, Miaym Bialik, and astonishingly: me. Interesting of IBM to have an ad including Open Source, security, and data rights as human rights!
Web version with subtitles. Version used to open the Think conference, on Youtube.. "I would like to make open source software the standard..." Perens says in the video, adding "Let's champion data rights as human rights," and asking "How do we bake security into everything we do?" But it's a montage of different speakers who each begin their comments by saying "Dear Tech," offering open letters with their hopes for the entire industry.
"Let's use blockchain to help reduce poverty."
"Let's use IoT to help victims of natural disasters."
"I feel like you have the potential to do so much more."
"Are you working for all of us, or just a few of us?"
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…
How's this for sci-fi: A cosmic river of 4,000 stars dazzles lifeforms as it flows through a galaxy. And that galaxy is the Milky Way
And said lifeforms include us humans on Earth
If you’re living in Earth's southern hemisphere, chances are you may be able to see some of the stars in a newly identified cosmic river that's flowed through the Milky Way for hundreds of millions of years.…
New report on St Kitts-Nevis economic citizenship abuse creates major stir in Middle East
By Caribbean News Now contributor DUBAI, UAE — A new report on Saturday by the widely-read Gulf News detailing the rampant abuse of the St Kitts and Nevis citizenship by investment programme (CIP) has created a major stir in the Middle East, a significant source market of applicants wishing to obtain second passports. Although much […]
Marriage inequality deliberate, says Cayman Islands government lawyer
GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands (CNS) — Sir Jeffrey Jowell QC, who the Cayman Islands government has instructed to defend a legal case challenging the British territory’s ban on same-sex marriage and the lack of equity for gay couples, told the court on Friday that “rightly or wrongly”, the intention of the constitution is to ensure […]
CDB president calls for resilience, transformation to drive regional economic growth
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados — Although grappling with challenges related to climate change; wide fiscal deficits and high public debt; as well as high unemployment, the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) has projected that the region’s economy is expected to grow by 2 percent in 2019. CDB president, Dr Wm. Warren Smith shared the bank’s forecast at its […]
US embassy signs MOU with government of Antigua-Barbuda to support juvenile justice reform
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados — The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the government of Antigua and Barbuda, and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Commission have signed a memorandum of understanding signaling their continued commitment to the successful rehabilitation and reintegration of at-risk youth and those in conflict with the law across the region. […]