Tech News Feed

Meta Quest 2 bundle with 'Resident Evil 4' and 'Beat Saber' is just $350 for Black Friday

Engadget - Tue, 2022-11-22 10:30

This might be your best chance to buy a virtual reality headset as a gift — or, let's be honest, for yourself. Amazon is selling a Meta Quest 2 128GB Black Friday bundle that includes the Resident Evil 4 VR remake and Beat Saberfor $350. That's less than the usual price of the hardware by itself, and makes it an easy choice if you wanted games to play from the very start. A 256GB bundle is also available for $430.

The Quest 2 has been around for over two years, but it's still the go-to headset for standalone VR. While it's not as powerful as tethered hardware like the upcoming PlayStation VR2, the freedom of movement makes it very appealing. You can play games or enter the metaverse without tripping over cords or limiting yourself to one room. The high-res screens, comfortable fit (once you've adjusted the lenses) and excellent controllers make the device pleasant to use for the two-plus hours of gameplay you'll typically get on a charge.

The games will be familiar. Resident Evil 4 in VR is what you'd hope for — it turns the survival horror game into a first-person action game that takes advantage of the immersive technology to keep you on edge. Beat Saber, meanwhile, is an iconic rhythm game that has you slashing notes and dodging obstacles in pursuit of high scores. Both are good showcases for VR, particularly for newcomers who might not know what to expect.

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Bed Bath & Beyond's Black Friday Sale Offers Up to 60% Off Home Essentials - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 10:29
There are hundreds of special offers on essentials to spruce up the home.

Ubisoft is Back To Releasing Games on Steam

SlashDot - Tue, 2022-11-22 10:21
Ubisoft is bringing Assassin's Creed Valhalla, Anno 1800, and Roller Champions to Steam, arguably its first major releases on Valve's PC distribution platform since 2019. From a report: "We're constantly evaluating how to bring our games to different audiences wherever they are, while providing a consistent player ecosystem through Ubisoft Connect," reads part of a statement from Ubisoft spokesperson Jessica Roache to The Verge. Roache declined to say whether that means Ubisoft will now regularly bring games to Steam or if it'll be on a case-by-case basis. It's not clear why Ubisoft stopped putting its PC games on Steam or why it's coming back now, but it appears to be picking up where it left off: Valhalla was the 2020 flagship game in the Assassin's Creed series, with the next title, Assassin's Creed Mirage, not due till 2023. Roller Champions came out this May. And Anno 1800 is actually coming back to Steam after previously having been removed -- it's from 2019. But it's no secret that Ubisoft pulled games from Steam to make them exclusive to the Epic Games Store instead, which famously gave publishers millions to attract games to that rival platform.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Add 'Diplomacy' to the list of games AI can play as well as humans

Engadget - Tue, 2022-11-22 10:00

Machine learning systems have been mopping the floor with their human opponents for well over a decade now (seriously, that first Watson Jeopardy win was all the way back in 2011), though the types of games they excel at are rather limited. Typically competitive board or video games using a limited play field, sequential moves and at least one clearly-defined opponent, any game that requires the crunching of numbers is to their advantage. Diplomacy, however, requires very little computation, instead demanding players negotiate directly with their opponents and make respective plays simultaneously — things modern ML systems are generally not built to do. But that hasn't stopped Meta researchers from designing an AI agent that can negotiate global policy positions as well as any UN ambassador.

Diplomacy was first released in 1959 and works like a more refined version of RISK where between two and seven players assume the roles of a European power and attempt to win the game by conquering their opponents' territories. Unlike RISK where the outcome of conflicts are decided by a simple the roll of the dice, Diplomacy demands players first negotiate with one another — setting up alliances, backstabbing, all that good stuff — before everybody moves their pieces simultaneously during the following game phase. The abilities to read and manipulate opponents, convince players to form alliances and plan complex strategies, navigate delicate partnerships and know when to switch sides, are all a huge part of the game — and all skills that machine learning systems generally lack.

On Wednesday, Meta AI researchers announced that they had surmounted those machine learning shortcomings with CICERO, the first AI to display human-level performance in Diplomacy. The team trained Cicero on 2.7 billion parameters over the course of 50,000 rounds at webDiplomacy.net, an online version of the game, where it ended up in second place (out of 19 participants) in a 5-game league tournament, all while doubling up the average score of its opponents.

The AI agent proved so adept "at using natural language to negotiate with people in Diplomacy that they often favored working with CICERO over other human participants," the Meta team noted in a press release Wednesday. "Diplomacy is a game about people rather than pieces. If an agent can't recognize that someone is likely bluffing or that another player would see a certain move as aggressive, it will quickly lose the game. Likewise, if it doesn't talk like a real person — showing empathy, building relationships, and speaking knowledgeably about the game — it won't find other players willing to work with it."

Meta CiceroMeta

Essentially, Cicero combines the strategic mindset from Pluribot or AlphaGO with the natural language processing (NLP) abilities of Blenderbot or GPT-3. The agent is even capable of forethought. "Cicero can deduce, for example, that later in the game it will need the support of one particular player, and then craft a strategy to win that person’s favor – and even recognize the risks and opportunities that that player sees from their particular point of view," the research team noted.

The agent does not train through a standard reinforcement learning scheme as similar systems do. The Meta team explains that doing so would lead to suboptimal performance as, "relying purely on supervised learning to choose actions based on past dialogue results in an agent that is relatively weak and highly exploitable."

Instead Cicero uses "iterative planning algorithm that balances dialogue consistency with rationality." It will first predict its opponents' plays based on what happened during the negotiation round, as well as what play it thinks its opponents think it will make before "iteratively improving these predictions by trying to choose new policies that have higher expected value given the other players' predicted policies, while also trying to keep the new predictions close to the original policy predictions." Easy, right?

The system is not yet fool-proof, as the agent will occasionally get too clever and wind up playing itself by taking contradictory negotiating positions. Still, its performance in these early trials is superior to that of many human politicians. Meta plans to continue developing the system to "serve as a safe sandbox to advance research in human-AI interaction."

Save Up to 64% on Garmin Watches and More With Black Friday Deals at Amazon - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:45
Save over $350 on advanced fitness trackers and GPS units with big discounts at Amazon.

65 Best Star Wars Gifts for 2022: All the Top Gifts for the Fan in Your Life - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:45
We've researched the finest Star Wars merch so you won't have to hire bounty hunters to get holiday gifts from a galaxy far, far away.

Rejuvenate Your Skin With 20% Off Sitewide at Pacifica Beauty - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:42
Grab sun care, hair care, skin care and other essentials on available during this Cyber Week sale.

IBM Sues Micro Focus, Claims It Copied Big Blue Mainframe Software

SlashDot - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:40
IBM has filed a lawsuit against Micro Focus, alleging the enterprise software company copied and reverse-engineered its CICS mainframe service to develop a rival product, the Micro Focus Enterprise Server. From a report: Big Blue has brought the case in the US District Court in New York, citing violation of copyright law and claiming that Micro Focus was in "blatant breach" of its contractual obligations with IBM. In a strongly worded complaint, the company accused UK-based Micro Focus of "brazen theft" of IBM software and said the suit was filed to "protect [its] valuable intellectual property." IBM is seeking compensation as well as an injunction against Micro Focus that would prohibit the company from distributing the products Big Blue labels as "derivative works" it claims are based upon IBM's own computer software.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Black Friday Nintendo Switch Bundle Includes Console, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and More for $299 - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:39
Give the perfect gaming gift with this bundle that includes everything you need to get started, including an online membership.

Give the Gift of Homemade Coffee for Under $10 - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:33
You don't need a costly espresso machine for great homemade coffee. You don't even need a French press.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet: How to Evolve Pawmo Into Pawmot - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:20
In both Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, you can transform Pawmo in 1,000 easy steps.

The best fitness gifts for your friends who work out

Engadget - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:15

Fitness fanatics can be pretty intense. You’ll probably identify us from miles away, decked out in workout gear, obsessing over the food we eat, or discussing our gains nonstop. A fitness lover has probably invested a lot of time and money into tools that can help improve performance, which can make us tough to shop for — we probably already have everything we need! But we’re also very likely to be super excited by any new toy that could boost our workouts. Plus, the most dedicated of us probably wear out our favorite gear quickly enough that we could always use new stuff.

What to get a fitness lover

It’s natural to assume that gifts for fitness lovers must be used during workouts, but recovery is an equally important (and frequently overlooked) part of anyone’s fitness journey. And presents for fitness lovers don’t have to be tech-infused, either. Gift cards to their favorite athleisure or fashion brands would probably be well-received, while compression braces or socks can provide them physical support. A pair of gloves would also help your weightlifting pal avoid getting more calluses, and special insoles can turn decent running shoes into great running shoes.

A versatile gift for anyone trying to keep active would be a resistance band, which suits a variety of strength levels and is very travel friendly. And, as my sports chiropractor constantly reminds me, a foam roller is the best thing for my sore muscles.

Tech gifts for fitness fans

Of course there are plenty of gadgets targeting exercisers and our muscles. From traditional machines like treadmills to smart skipping ropes and VR boxing simulators – the land of fitness tech gets stranger by the day.

As someone who’s recently become somewhat of a workout fiend, I would enthusiastically welcome anything that’s related to improving my performance. I’ve tested all manner of devices — whether it’s Gatorade’s sweat patch and hydration-tracking bottle or smart mirrors and form-checking cameras. From my experience, single-purpose devices are the most likely to sit around unused. Things like the Gatorade bottle and Fiture mirror, for example, which actually serve a purpose even if they’re deactivated, are more likely to withstand the test of time. Here are our favorite tech products for fitness lovers.

Garmin Forerunner 745Garmin Forerunner 745Engadget

Serious runners swear by Garmin’s Forerunner series. They’re the gold standard for running watches, thanks to their accuracy and comprehensive suite of features. You can track your cadence, stride length, ground contact time, balance and more, but Garmin also helps monitor your recovery time and training load.

It’ll analyze your performance and workouts, using your aerobic and anaerobic data to see what effect your exercise is having on your endurance, speed and power. The Forerunner 745 will also tell you if you’re training productively, at your peak or if you’re overreaching. Like most other smartwatches, this will also track your sleep, control your music playback and alert you to incoming notifications from your phone. It may have a more basic-looking operating system than the Apple Watch or Galaxy Watch, but the Forerunner 745’s best trait is that it will last up to a week on a charge. — Cherlynn Low, Deputy Editor

Buy Forerunner 745 at Garmin - $500Apple Watch Series 8Apple Watch Series 8Will Lipman Photography for Engadget

For iPhone users, there is no better smartwatch than the Apple Watch. Whether you opt for the maxed out Ultra or the basic SE, you’ll be getting your loved one a well-rounded and competent wearable. The Series 8 sits between those two models and offers a great balance of features and comfort. It’s not as chunky as the Ultra and has an onboard skin temperature sensor that the SE doesn’t.

Your giftee will receive reminders to stay active, have their walks automatically detected and be prompted to take mindfulness breaks throughout the day. Apple’s workout tracking also does a great job of logging time elapsed, calories burned, distance traveled and other key metrics. Plus, with watchOS 9, the workout pages now show what heart rate zone the wearer is in, so they can better understand when to push themselves harder or take it easy.

If the person you’re shopping for is more of an endurance athlete or outdoor adventurer, the Ultra’s enhanced GPS and special features might make it a better gift, but at $800, it’s wildly expensive and you might want to split the cost with others. — C.L.

Buy Apple Watch Series 8 at Amazon - $399Fitbit Inspire 3Fitbit Inspire 3Will Lipman Photography for Engadget

Compared to older Inspire models, the third generation comes with a color touchscreen that’s easier to navigate. While Fitbit OS remains pretty basic, it will at least deliver smartphone notifications to your wrist. Plus, the lowkey software translates to 10-day battery life, even in that small, lightweight frame. If the person you’re shopping for prefers to leave their phone at home when they go on a run, the Inspire 3 lacks the onboard GPS necessary to route their journey, so you’ll need to look for something else. But for almost everyone else, the Inspire 3 is a great, low-profile way to keep track of your activity. — C.L.

Buy Inspire 3 at Amazon - $100Samsung Galaxy Watch 5Samsung Galaxy Watch 5Samsung

Samsung’s line of smartwatches remains the best on the market for Android users. Though the Galaxy Watch 5 runs the relatively basic Wear OS, the company has managed to bake in its capable health and fitness-tracking system to help the user stay active. Its auto-detection is among the most accurate in the industry, and it tracks an impressively long list of workouts, including swims. And if your loved one already uses Samsung phones and appliances, they’ll find some useful integrations like smart home controls from their wrist.

The Watch 5 is also a capable sleep tracker, and though it doesn’t offer as many mindfulness-related features as Apple and Fitbit, Samsung does have some meditation guides in its Health app. It’s also the only smartwatch on this list with a round face, which fans of traditional watches may prefer. — C.L.

Buy Galaxy Watch 5 at Amazon - $280Apple Fitness+Apple Fitness+Apple

If you’re shopping for someone that wants to get more active but is intimidated by gyms, a Fitness+ subscription is a great way to help them get started. Apple’s library of video workouts caters to all levels, but it’s especially friendly to beginners. Fitness+ contains comprehensive guides, as well as collections designed for pregnant people or new parents, giving plenty of options for those who may find themselves in different life situations.

Starting in October, Apple opened up Fitness+ so you no longer have to own an Apple Watch. Now, your giftee just needs to have an iPhone, and they can follow along the routines through their TVs, iPads or, yes, iPhones. If they also own an Apple Watch, they can pause and resume the classes from their wrist, as well as see their heart rate and Move ring progress on the screen.

Since the videos can be viewed on iPads, Fitness+ is suitable for people who travel a lot. They can take the classes in hotel rooms, RVs, cruises and more. It’s also a great last-minute gift. Just know that for anyone that has a specific favorite sport and doesn’t want to explore new types of activity, Fitness+ might feel too easy. — C.L.

Subscribe to Apple Fitness+Withings Body+ smart scaleWithings Body+ smart scaleEngadget

The right weighing scale can deliver more readings than just weight alone. Case in point: Withings’ Body+ smart scale. It’ll tell you how heavy you are, sure, but it also uses multi-frequency bio-electrical impedance analysis (BIA) to get your muscle mass, fat mass, bone mass, water percentage and visceral fat level. And like all good connected scales, it’ll send all that information to an app on your phone so you can track your progress over time.

The Body+ scale also offers Pulse Wave Velocity (PWV) tracking, which measures the speed at which your blood travels to see your vascular and nerve health. At $100, it’s not the cheapest, but it does produce a wide range of data that regular weighing scales don’t. You can also consider less premium devices from Withings that also offer body composition measurements, like the Body Scan or Body+, which will serve your friend perfectly well. — C.L.

Buy Withings Body+ scale at Amazon - $100Theragun MiniTheragun MiniTherabody

It’s important to take care of your body even after you’ve completed a tough workout. The Theragun Mini can take your recovery routine to the next level by helping you massage out tension points in your muscles with more force than you could even provide on your own. It has three different speeds, all of which work better on different muscle groups, and its ergonomic design makes it pretty easy and comfortable to hold while using it. Sure, you can get more speed options, smartphone connectivity and more with the high-end models, but the Mini is great not only for its relatively affordable price, but for its compact design as well. Weighing only three pounds, it could easily live in your gym bag for daily muscle maintenance but you could also throw it on your carry-on before a trip so you can work out those cramps and knots you’ll inevitably get after sitting in an airplane seat for a few hours. — Valentina Palladino, Senior Commerce Editor

Buy Theragun Mini at Amazon - $199Shokz OpenRun ProShokz OpenRun ProShokz

The Shokz OpenRun Pro Bluetooth headphones provide a unique way of blending music with an active lifestyle that’s ideal for runners, cyclists and more. They use bone conduction to deliver sound to your inner ear through your cheekbones, leaving your ears open so you can remain aware of your surroundings.

The OpenRun Pro model is the company’s premium offering and provides one of the richest bass experiences available for this style of headphones. They’re IP55 water-resistant, offer a useful 5-minute quick charge for 1.5 hours of listening and last up to 10 hours on a full charge. You should keep in mind that the open-ear design is a tradeoff, since they’re not great for noisy environments.

This is an interesting gift for fitness enthusiasts because they’re probably not the first style of headphones that they’d consider. But once they’ve taken them for a run or a bike ride, the benefits of having music while also keeping track of nearby traffic or pedestrians is game changing. — Jon Turi, Homepage Editor

Buy OpenRun Pro at Amazon - $180Withings ScanWatch HorizonWithings ScanWatch HorizonWill Lipman Photography for Engadget

There are smartwatches, there are fitness watches, and then there is Withings’ ScanWatch Horizon. It’s the French company’s gussied-up version of its class-leading hybrid that remains my only pick for people who want something smart, but classy, on their wrist. Horizon comes with activity, fitness, sleep and heart-rate tracking as well as a built-in ECG to monitor your heart health. But it’s been styled like a diver’s watch, with the OLED subdial the only clue that it’s a lot smarter than it looks at first glance.

Maybe it’s the fact that what makes Horizon so good is how well-hidden its smarts really are, and how good it looks on your wrist. And that’s before you get to the practical stuff – it’s $500, so it’s cheaper than a Submariner and does plenty more. The battery will last for a month at a time, reducing the need for you to keep your charger close by at all times. And Withings’ Health Mate app remains one of the best on the market for giving you insights about your body you might not have noticed yourself. — Daniel Cooper, Senior Reporter

Buy ScanWatch Horizon at Amazon - $500

Snag a Previous-Gen Samsung Smartwatch for Up to 60% Off - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:03
Woot has a selection of Galaxy 3 and Galaxy 4 smartwatches on sale, with prices starting at just $160.

Mortgage Refinance Rates on Nov. 22, 2022: Rates Drop Off - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:00
Multiple benchmark refinance rates slid lower today. If you haven't locked in a rate yet, now's a good time to assess your options.

Current Mortgage Rates for Nov. 22, 2022: Rates Fall - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:00
Today quite a few important mortgage rates declined, though rates are generally expected to rise this year. See how the Fed's interest rate hikes could affect your mortgage payments.

The best Black Friday game console deals on the Nintendo Switch, Xbox Series S, PlayStation 5 and others

Engadget - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:00

Demand for the current generation of Nintendo, PlayStation and Xbox consoles has been through the roof for the better part of two years now, and that should only amplify during Black Friday. We can't guarantee you'll be able to get the Switch, PS5, or Xbox Series X/S you've been eyeing this holiday season, but to help make your search a little bit more convenient, we've compiled all the product listings we can find for each console in one place. 

Again, demand for these machines is high, so not every console may be in stock by the time you read this. And though Black Friday is near, we don't expect to see many outright discounts on most consoles, either — at the time of publication, the only deals available are for the lower-power Xbox Series S and the base Nintendo Switch. We'll update this article over the course of the week if new offers pop up. For now, though, let us save you a bit of Googling.

Nintendo SwitchNintendo SwitchEngadget

Nintendo's primary deal this Black Friday bundles the base-model Nintendo Switch with a copy of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and a three-month subscription to its Nintendo Switch Online service. If that sounds familiar, it's because Nintendo has run this exact same promotion during Black Friday for the last few years. 

It's hard to call this a great deal at this point — the Switch OLED is a pretty firm upgrade, and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, while fun, is a five-year-old rerelease of an eight-year-old Wii U game. But if you don't need the OLED model's upgraded display and just want to save a few bucks, there's at least some value here. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is still receiving updates and normally retails around $50, while a 3-month Switch Online membership normally goes for $8.

Buy Nintendo Switch holiday bundle ($300) at:Nintendo Switch OLEDSamus Aran in a save pointKris Naudus / Engadget

The $350 Switch OLED is the newest Switch model, so it should be unsurprising to hear that Nintendo isn't advertising any deals for the device this Black Friday. Really, discounts of any kind for the console have been exceedingly rare since it launched in October 2021. Stock for the Switch OLED is generally spottier as well, but we've rounded up where it's available below. 

As a reminder, the Switch OLED isn't any better at running games than the standard model, but its 7-inch OLED display is larger and more vibrant, it doubles the internal storage (64GB), its built-in kickstand is much sturdier and its updated dock has an Ethernet port. We gave it a review score of 89 last year.

Best Nintendo Switch OLED ($349) at:Nintendo Switch LiteNintendo Switch LiteEngadget

We have seen a few deals for the $200 Switch Lite since it arrived in 2019, but the compact console isn't discounted for Black Friday as of this writing. This is the entry-level, handheld-only variant of the Switch; again, there's no difference in power, but it has a smaller 5.5-inch LED display, it doesn't work with Nintendo's dock and it's not equipped with detachable controllers. It also has a genuine D-pad. We gave it a review score of 90 a few years back.

Best Nintendo Switch Lite ($200) at:PlayStation 5PlayStation 5 just gained support Youtube TV.Aaron Souppouris / Engadget

There've been next to no discounts on Sony's PlayStation 5 since it arrived two years ago, and we don't expect that to change this Black Friday. The console is easier to actually purchase these days — and brick-and-mortar stores are more likely to have it now than in years past — but stock still tends to dry up fast whenever it does become available. Retailers like Amazon and Sony itself continue to hold their inventory behind an invite system to fend off scalpers, while others like GameStop keep it behind store membership programs.

As has been the case for the past few months, it'll likely be easiest to get the console as part of a bundle. Sony's main one of those this holiday season pairs the console with a digital copy of God of War: Ragnarok, which we broadly recommended earlier this month. It costs $559 (or $460 with a disc-drive-less PS5 Digital Edition), which is only $10 off what the console and game would cost otherwise. Since it's more expensive than buying the $500 PS5 alone, though, there should be a little less competition when trying to buy one. 

Walmart had these bundles up for sale as of Monday, but it gave priority access to members of its Walmart+ service for the first several hours of the day. We wouldn't be surprised to see more stock for individual PS5s become available as the week rolls on, but you'll likely need to be vigilant or use a lengthier invite process to more reliably grab one. Note that the $400 Digital Edition is traditionally much harder to find in stock than the standard model, too. 

The PS5 itself could still do with a few more exclusives, but its library is growing all the time, and its hardware will still represent a significant upgrade for those hanging onto a PS4.

Buy PlayStation 5 ($500) at:Buy PS5 Digital Edition ($400) at:Buy PS5 + God of War: Ragnarok bundle ($560) at:Buy PS5 Digital Edition + God of War: Ragnarok bundle ($460) at:Xbox Series XXbox Series XAaron Souppouris/Engadget

Microsoft's Xbox Series X has been more readily available to purchase over the past year than the PlayStation 5, but discounts for it have been virtually nonexistent, and it's still not uncommon to see it out of stock at third-party retailers. There aren't any Black Friday deals of note going on for it as of this writing. Like the PS5, Amazon still holds the device behind an invite system, and Walmart had it available to Walmart+ subscribers earlier Monday. 

Your best bet right now looks to be buying from Microsoft itself, though again we could see more stock elsewhere on Black Friday proper. Again, the latest Xboxes are somewhat lacking in exclusives, but Xbox Game Pass remains a strong value for those who play lots of games, and the Series X is still a powerful piece of hardware for 4K gaming. 

Buy Xbox Series X ($500) at:Xbox Series SMicrosoft Series S gaming console.Aaron Souppouris / Engadget

The one console that is genuinely discounted is the Xbox Series S. Microsoft announced last week that the diminutive console would be available for $250, which is $50 off its standard going rate, though this week we've seen it as low as $235 at Dell and $240 at Amazon. The former deal is still available.

Target may have the best deal of the bunch, though, as it's throwing in a $50 store gift card alongside the discount. Its stock currently appears be dropping in and out, though. Microsoft, meanwhile, is bundling its Xbox Stereo Headset with the console. Normally, that (basic) gaming headset retails around $50.

We've seen the Series S fall to $250 in the past, but this is still a good price for those who want a secondary console or a more affordable route into the Xbox game library. We gave the Series S a review score of 85 at launch: It lacks a disc drive, only has 512GB of built-in storage and isn't designed to push 4K resolutions like the Series X, but it can play all the same games, its SSD still allows for fast load times and its compact design is easier to tuck away.

Buy Xbox Series S ($250) at:

Your Cyber Week Shopping Guide: Get the latest Black Friday and Cyber Monday offers by following @EngadgetDeals on Twitter and subscribing to the Engadget Deals newsletter. Also, shop the top Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals on Yahoo Life. Learn about Black Friday trends on In the Know, and our car experts at Autoblog are covering must-shop Black Friday and Cyber Monday auto deals.

Tax Filing Websites Have Been Sending Users' Financial Information To Facebook

SlashDot - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:00
Major tax filing services such as H&R Block, TaxAct, and TaxSlayer have been quietly transmitting sensitive financial information to Facebook when Americans file their taxes online, The Markup has learned. From the report: The data, sent through widely used code called the Meta Pixel, includes not only information like names and email addresses but often even more detailed information, including data on users' income, filing status, refund amounts, and dependents' college scholarship amounts. The information sent to Facebook can be used by the company to power its advertising algorithms and is gathered regardless of whether the person using the tax filing service has an account on Facebook or other platforms operated by its owner Meta. Each year, the Internal Revenue Service processes about 150 million individual returns filed electronically, and some of the most widely used e-filing services employ the pixel, The Markup found.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Why 2 Is the Best Number and Other Secrets from a MacArthur-Winning Mathematician

Scientifc America - Tue, 2022-11-22 09:00

Mathematician Melanie Matchett Wood seeks creative ways of solving open math problems

Save Up to 65% With Big Discounts on Glasses, Contacts and More at GlassesUSA - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 08:59
Cash in on Black Friday savings you have to see to believe.

11 Black Friday Deals at Walmart That You Can't Find at Amazon - CNET

CNET News - Tue, 2022-11-22 08:48
In a battle of online retailers this holiday season, Walmart currently beats Amazon for these products.

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