Tech News Feed

Consumer Reports No Longer Recommends the Tesla Model 3

SlashDot - 0 sec ago
Consumer Reports is pulling its recommendation of the Tesla Model 3, citing reliability issues with the car. "Tesla buyers are more likely to be satisfied with their car than customers of any other brand, according to Consumer Reports," reports CNN. "Yet the publication says many customers reported problems with the Model 3, including loose body trim and glass defects." From the report: "Consumers expect their cars to last -- and not be in the repair shop. That's why reliability is so important," said Jake Fisher, senior director of automotive testing at Consumer Reports. Tesla pointed to its overall customer satisfaction rating from Consumer Reports and said it has corrected many of the problems found in the survey. "We take feedback from our customers very seriously and quickly implement improvements any time we hear about issues," said the company statement. It said the survey was conducted from July through September, "so the vast majority of these issues have already been corrected through design and manufacturing improvements, and we are already seeing a significant improvement in our field data." Last May, the product testing website failed to give the Model 3 a recommendation due to issues with braking, but ultimately reversed its decision after Tesla released a firmware update improving the car's breaking distance by nearly 20 feet.

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Unearthed Emails Show Google, Ad Giants Know They Break Privacy Laws

SlashDot - 0 sec ago
AmiMoJo shares a report from The Register: Privacy warriors have filed fresh evidence in their ongoing battle against real-time web ad exchange systems, which campaigners claim trample over Europe's data protection laws. The new filings -- submitted today to regulators in the UK, Ireland, and Poland -- allege that Google and industry body the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) are well aware that their advertising networks flout the EU's privacy-safeguarding GDPR, and yet are doing nothing about it. The IAB, Google -- which is an IAB member -- and others in the ad-slinging world insist they aren't doing anything wrong. The fresh submissions come soon after the UK Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) revealed plans to probe programmatic ads. These are adverts that are selected and served on-the-fly as you visit a webpage, using whatever personal information has been scraped together about you to pick an ad most relevant to your interests. [...] The ICO's investigation will focus on how well informed people are about how their personal information is used for this kind of online advertising, which laws ad-technology firms rely on for processing said private data, and whether users' data is secure as it is shared on these platforms.

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CRISPR gene-editing experiment may have impacted twins' brains

Engadget - 0 sec ago
Researchers have published research into a gene at the heart of a controversial human gene-editing experiment, lending more weight to the theory that it inhibits cognitive function. But no one knows how the method may have affected the minds of the C...

American Airlines Has Cameras In Their Screens Too

SlashDot - 0 sec ago
An anonymous reader quotes a report from BuzzFeed News: A viral photo showing a camera in a Singapore Airlines in-flight TV display recently caused an uproar online. The image was retweeted hundreds of times, with many people expressing concern about the privacy implications. As it turns out, some seat-back screens in American Airlines' premium economy class have them, too. Sri Ray was aboard an American Airlines Boeing 777-200 flight to Tokyo in September 2018 when he noticed something strange: a camera embedded in the seat back of his entertainment system. The cameras are also visible in this June 2017 review of the airline's premium economy offering by the Points Guy, as well as this YouTube video by Business Traveller magazine. American Airlines spokesperson Ross Feinstein confirmed to BuzzFeed News that cameras are present on some of the airlines' in-flight entertainment systems, but said "they have never been activated, and American is not considering using them." Feinstein added, "Cameras are a standard feature on many in-flight entertainment systems used by multiple airlines. Manufacturers of those systems have included cameras for possible future uses, such as hand gestures to control in-flight entertainment." After Twitter user Vitaly Kamluk saw a similar lens on Singapore Airlines and tweeted photos of the system last week, the airline responded from its official Twitter account, saying the cameras were "disabled." Still, the airlines could quell passengers' concerns by covering the lenses with a plastic cover, if indeed there is no use for the camera.

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Trailer for Jordan Peele's 'Twilight Zone' shows an unsettling universe

Engadget - 57 sec ago
You no longer have to wonder how Jordan Peele would handle a reboot of The Twilight Zone. CBS All Access has shared the first trailer for the streaming series, and it appears to be what you'd hope for from the Get Out director: a more disturbing tak...

Queensland, Australia Drivers Set To Get Emoji Number Plates

SlashDot - 12 min 57 sec ago
The unusual move is set to be rolled out by Personalised Plates Queensland (PPQ) from next month, allowing drivers to adorn their number plates with a touch of emotion. From a report: Royal Automobile Club of Queensland (RACQ) spokeswoman Rebecca Michael said it was no different from allowing drivers to express themselves with other available themes like their favorite footy team. "For quite some time we've seen that you can support your favourite team or your favourite town with a symbol on your number plate," Dr Michael told 7News Brisbane. "And using an emoji is no different." But before your mind goes straight to the gutter, no, you won't be able to completely replace the letters and numbers on your number plate with an eggplant or smiling poo emoji. The smartphone symbols won't be included in rego numbers and are simply decorative.

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NASA is giving us daily weather reports from Mars

Engadget - 22 min 57 sec ago
NASA says its new Mars weather website will be "geeky fun for meteorologists." For the rest of us, it's a daily reminder that Mars is ridiculously cold. The website shares a daily weather report with temperature, atmospheric pressure and wind speed c...

Wirecutter's best deals: Dell's G7 15 gaming laptop drops to $900

Engadget - 42 min 57 sec ago
This post was done in partnership with Wirecutter. When readers choose to buy Wirecutter's independently chosen editorial picks, it may earn affiliate commissions that support its work. Read Wirecutter's continuously updated list of deals here.

Nike Bricks Its Shoes With a Faulty Firmware Update

SlashDot - 52 min 57 sec ago
AmiMoJo writes: Nike users are experiencing some technical difficulties in the wild world of connected footwear. Nike's $350 "Adapt BB" sneakers are the latest in the company's line of self-lacing shoes, and they come with the "Nike Adapt" app for Android and iOS. The app pairs with the shoes and lets you adjust the tightness of the laces, customize the lights (yeah, there are lights), and see, uh, how much battery life your shoes have left. The only problem: Nike's Android app doesn't work. Android users report that their new kicks aren't paring with the app properly, and some customers report failed firmware updates for the shoes, which render them unable to pair with the app at all. "My left shoe won't even reboot." writes one owner.

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AT&T pulls ads from YouTube over pedophilia controversy

Engadget - 59 min 57 sec ago
As YouTube continues to struggle with the issue of child predators latching on to content for kids, the video platform has lost another major advertiser. AT&T has decided to pull its ads from YouTube, according to CNBC. The telecom giant joins Di...

Facebook allowed advertisers to target users interested in Nazism

Engadget - 1 hour 28 min ago
Facebook still has some work to do if it wants to eliminate racist criteria from its ad targeting. The company has pulled numerous audience groupings from its ad plaform after the LA Times discovered that advertisers could target ads for people inte...

Right To Repair Legislation Is Officially Being Considered In Canada

SlashDot - 1 hour 31 min ago
Canada is the newest frontier in the fight for the "right to repair" after an Ontario politician introduced a bill on Thursday that would ensure individuals and independent professionals can repair brand-name computers and phones cheaply and easily. From a report: Manufacturers make it incredibly difficult to repair our broken devices ourselves. Instead of taking a smashed phone to a local repair professional for an affordable fix, a complex matrix of trade secrets and government intervention often means consumers have to make a pricey trip to the Genius Bar or buy a new device entirely. This is bad for your wallet, but also bad for the planet. Ontario Liberal Party MPP Michael Coteau ran into this issue head-first after his daughter dropped his Samsung smartphone. An official repair job from the manufacturer was more expensive than just getting a new phone from his carrier, he told me over the phone. "It's a shame," Coteau said, "because the Samsung S8 was very good for me. Everything was perfect. I would've kept using it. But now I've replaced it." On Thursday, Coteau introduced a private member's bill in provincial parliament that, if passed, would be the first "right to repair" law for electronic devices in North America. More than a dozen US states are currently considering similar bills, but nothing is on the books yet in the US or in Canada.

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Gene in Infamous Experiment on Embryos Points to New Stroke Treatment 

Scientifc America - 1 hour 42 min ago
Biology at the center of last year’s contentious gene-edited twins result may hold other benefits for brain injury

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

'Gaming phones' are just flagship phones now

Engadget - 1 hour 42 min ago
The specs on Samsung's Galaxy S10+ are bonkers. This baby has up to 12GB of RAM and 1TB of internal storage, with the option to add 512GB more via microSD and a vapor-chamber cooling system a lot like the one in the Xbox One X. Samsung is talking up...

Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé is retiring

Engadget - 2 hours 7 min ago
After almost 13 years in the job, Nintendo of America COO and president Reggie Fils-Aimé is stepping down. He's set to retire in April, with sales and marketing SVP Doug Bowser (yep, that's actually his name) taking over.

Facebook Continued To Identify Users Who Are Interested in Nazis -- and Then Used the Info To Let Advertisers Target Them, Investigation Finds

SlashDot - 2 hours 11 min ago
An anonymous reader shares a report: Facebook makes money by charging advertisers to reach just the right audience for their message -- even when that audience is made up of people interested in the perpetrators of the Holocaust or explicitly neo-Nazi music. Despite promises of greater oversight following past advertising scandals, a Times review shows that Facebook has continued to allow advertisers to target hundreds of thousands of users the social media firm believes are curious about topics such as "Joseph Goebbels," "Josef Mengele," "Heinrich Himmler," the neo-nazi punk band Skrewdriver and Benito Mussolini's long-defunct National Fascist Party. Experts say that this practice runs counter to the company's stated principles and can help fuel radicalization online. "What you're describing, where a clear hateful idea or narrative can be amplified to reach more people, is exactly what they said they don't want to do and what they need to be held accountable for," said Oren Segal, director of the Anti-Defamation League's center on extremism. After being contacted by The Times, Facebook said that it would remove many of the audience groupings from its ad platform.

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Lyft's Shared Saver rides save you money if you're willing to walk more

Engadget - 2 hours 32 min ago
Lyft has announced a new ride option called Shared Saver. The budget-friendly option expands the company's existing ride sharing options puts commuters in the same vehicle to split the cost of the ride and will not be subject to surge pricing. The ca...

The Real Dino Killer: A One–Two Punch

Scientifc America - 2 hours 42 min ago
An asteroid impact and volcanoes acting together could have done in the beasts, new rock dates indicate

-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com

Japan Wants To Boost the Use of Electric Vehicles as a Power Source During Natural Disasters

SlashDot - 2 hours 52 min ago
Japan, a country which frequently suffers natural calamities such as tsunamis, typhoons, and earthquakes is looking to further harness the power of batteries used in electric vehicles (EVs) during such disasters, local media reports. From a report: Nissan, which produces the Leaf, the world's best-selling EV model, plans to hold an event in March to let people stay overnight in their cars and try using the electricity stored in their car batteries to simulate the experience of being in an emergency, according to Japanese newswire Jiji. A fully charged electric vehicle can supply power to a standard home for up to four days, a Nissan official told the news outlet. The company last year came to an agreement with Tokyo's Nerima Ward and the city of Yokosuka to provide EVs for free in emergency situations. Nerima also last year (link in Japanese) implemented a system whereby owners of EVs would be able to loan their vehicles out for free to those in need during a disaster, and also started using EVs for its fleet of police patrol cars.

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'Unique challenges' derail Amy Winehouse hologram tour

Engadget - 3 hours 5 min ago
If you were hoping to catch Amy Winehouse's hologram tour this year, you may have to settle for a big-screen biopic instead. BASE Hologram, the company behind the production, announced on Twitter yesterday that it is "putting the tour on hold until w...

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