Tech News Feed

MacBook Pros With New Processors Will Head to Mass Production Soon, Analyst Predicts - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 16:29
More of Apple's laptops could get a speed boost with the new chip.

Israeli Spyware Company NSO Group CEO Steps Down

SlashDot - Mon, 2022-08-22 16:02
Israeli spyware firm NSO Group says its Chief Executive Shalev Hulio is stepping down with immediate effect, with Chief Operating Officer Yaron Shohat appointed to oversee a reorganisation of the company before a successor is named. From a report: A source in the company confirmed that around 100 employees will be let go as part of the firm's reorganisation, and that Shohat will lead the company until the board appoints a new CEO. The surveillance firm, which makes Pegasus software, has been contending with legal action after allegations that its tools were misused by governments and other agencies to hack mobile phones. NSO has said its technology is intended to help catch terrorists, paedophiles and hardened criminals and is sold to "vetted and legitimate" government clients, although it keeps its client list confidential. "The company's products remain in high demand with governments and law enforcement agencies because of its cutting-edge technology and proven ability to assist these customers in fighting crime and terror," Shohat said in a statement.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Elon Musk subpoenas Jack Dorsey amid Twitter legal fight

Engadget - Mon, 2022-08-22 15:41

Lawyers representing Elon Musk in his battle with Twitter have subpoenaed former CEO Jack Dorsey. The filing is the latest development as Musk and Twitter prepare for the October trial over Musk’s attempt to bail on his $44 billion deal to buy the company.

It’s not yet clear how Dorsey factors in to Musk's legal strategy. As noted by the Chancery Daily Twitter account, the subpoena refers to “documents and communications reflecting, referring to, or relating to the impact or effect of false or spam accounts on Twitter’s business operations.” It also references documents related to how Twitter uses mDAU or monetizable daily active users as a “key metric.” Interestingly, it also requests “documents relating to incorporating mDAU into executive or director compensation.”

Dorsey isn't the only former Twitter executive subpoenaed by Musk. Twitter’s recently ousted product chief Kayvon Beykpour and former head of revenue Bruce Falck have also received subpoenas.

Musk has claimed that Twitter has misled him and the public about the number of bots and fake accounts on the platform. Twitter’s lawyers have argued that Musk has repeatedly broken the terms of his agreement with the company. A five-day trial is scheduled to begin October 17th.

Dorsey previously endorsed Musk’s bid to buy Twitter, saying that “Elon is the singular solution I trust,” and that he was ““getting the company out of an impossible situation.” Dorsey hasn’t publicly weighed in on the ongoing legal battle or Musk’s claims about bots and fake accounts.

George R.R. Martin Wanted 'Game of Thrones' to Run for '10 Seasons at Least' - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 15:37
Martin will have more creative input on House of the Dragon.

eBay is buying the trading card marketplace TCGplayer for $295 million

Engadget - Mon, 2022-08-22 15:31

eBay is placing a big bet on the booming trading card industry. The company is set to buy TCGplayer — an online marketplace for trading card games — in a deal valued up to $295 million, it announced today. Launched in 2008, TCGplayer specializes in trading cards from popular franchises like Pokémon, Magic: The Gathering, Digimon and more. The site will operate independently after the acquisition, which is expected to close in the first quarter of 2023. eBay — which is currently the world’s largest card resale site — also noted that the deal will provide it with “strategic omnichannel capabilities like order fulfillment and cart optimization.”

The pandemic drove a surge of interest in collectible trading cards that has only recently started to slow down. Last year eBay sold a trading card every two seconds, noted The Athletic. The company has taken steps to make it easier for individuals to sell trading cards on its platform, such as adding image recognition to automate listings and authenticating trading cards worth $750 or more.

eBay has also ventured into another area of collectibles — NFTs. Earlier this year, the company launched its own NFT collection and bought digital art marketplace KnownOrigin for an undisclosed sum.  

Pixar-Inspired Porsche 911 Sally Special Sells for $3.6M, All to Charity - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 15:25
This one-off 911 has a number of special touches inspired by a character from the Pixar movie cars.

Elon Musk Subpoenas Former Twitter CEO in Legal Battle Over $44B Deal - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 15:23
Jack Dorsey, who stepped down as Twitter CEO late last year, has publicly supported Musk's efforts to take over the social media company.

MoviePass Returns With a New Model and Without the Iconic Red Card

SlashDot - Mon, 2022-08-22 15:20
MoviePass, a subscription service for movie theaters which shut down three years ago, is making a return. From a report: Remember the golden days of MoviePass, in early 2018, when $9.95 a month got you unlimited movies? And then, remember when right after, MoviePass reported a $40 million dollar loss in May 2018 and tried and failed over and over again to restructure, before finally calling it quits in 2019? Well, MoviePass is back! Starting on Aug. 25 at 9 am EDT, you can sign up for a waitlist at the MoviePass website for the beta version of the new model. But it's not the same MoviePass we once knew and loved, which, let's be real, was always too good to be true. Instead, this time there will be three subscription price tiers -- $10, $20, and $30 -- each with a different number of "credits" to use each month to see movies. MoviePass has not revealed how many credits each tier gets, nor how many credits are needed to reserve a ticket.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

VESA's ClearMR is a new standard for display motion performance

Engadget - Mon, 2022-08-22 15:07

The Video Electronics Standards Associated (VESA) wants to make buying your next monitor or TV easier, and it’s doing so by introducing a new standard. I know what you’re thinking: between DisplayPort, DisplayHDR and AdaptiveSync, aren’t there already more VESA standards than anyone can keep track of? Well, yes, but the organization’s newest certification program may help demystify one of the more opaque aspects of buying a new display: motion clarity performance.

You probably have a good sense of the problem if you recently spent time researching your next monitor or TV purchase. Using gaming monitors as an example, many manufacturers claim their products feature 1ms gray-to-gray (GtG) pixel response times, yet they don’t handle motion blur to the same standard. One of the reasons for that is that manufacturers cherry-pick GtG results that make their monitors look better on paper.

A chart showing the current ClearMR tiers.VESA

Right now, one of the best ways to find a monitor or TV that won’t look blurry when gaming and watching video is to turn to outlets like Rtings and Hardware Unboxed. They’ve developed comprehensive testing methodologies to help you cut through all the marketing. You can also rest assured they probably have the Blur Busters UFO test set as their homepage.

In the future, the process may be less time-consuming thanks to VESA’s new Clear Motion Ratio Compliance Test Specification, or ClearMR for short. The standard introduces a tiered ranking system designed to communicate the ratio of clear to blurry pixels a screen will produce when displaying a fast-moving image. For instance, a monitor with a ClearMR 7000 badge would have a “Clear Motion Ratio” range of 65 to 75 times more clear pixels than blurry ones. According to VESA, there’s a “visually distinguishable change in clarity” between tiers, and the standard will encompass a variety of consumer displays, including those you can find on laptops and tablets.

"It is our goal that ClearMR will replace existing metrics that are used in advertisements for blur-based metrics that are solely based on time, like MPRT [motion picture response time],” Dale Stolitzka, senior principal researcher at Samsung Display and lead contributor to ClearMR, told ArsTechnica. “I would be perfectly happy if I didn't see that in advertisements anymore.”

Interestingly, when certifying displays that feature backlight strobing or black frame insertion, VESA will disable those features to “prevent unfair comparisons” with products that do not include them. The organization also plans to account for overdrive by limiting overshoot to under 20 percent. With today’s announcement, ClearMR also only applies to SDR displays, but the standard will eventually evolve to include HDR screens too.

The first batch of ClearMR-certified products comprises one HP monitor and 15 LG screens, including the 32GQ850 and 27GP850.

How to Qualify for the Best Rate on a HELOC - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 15:03
Having a good credit score and minimal debt can help you secure a low interest rate.

MoviePass Returns in Beta Sept. 5 With $10 Starting Price, Waitlist Opens Thursday - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 14:59
The new MoviePass service -- this time relying on credits -- will come with a new black card.

The Game Awards Show Streaming Dec. 8 - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 14:44
What game will win the title of 2022's Game of the Year?

Electrical Currents To the Brain Improve Memory for Older Adults, Study Finds

SlashDot - Mon, 2022-08-22 14:42
Pulsing electrical currents through the brain for 20 minutes can boost memory for older adults for at least a month, according to a new study. From a report: Around 8 percent of people in the US get diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease or dementia as they get older -- significantly impairing their memory -- and an even larger group of older adults has some degree of age-related memory loss. This new study is only a first look at a potential solution. But easy, quick treatments like this one could become even more important as the world's population rapidly ages -- especially if future research shows that it can help with more serious cognitive conditions. The brain stimulation done in this study, published Monday in Nature Neuroscience, came from a swim cap-like device studded with electrodes positioned to deliver the electric current to specific areas of the brain. The research team was interested in two main areas: one that's linked with working memory (which holds information temporarily and overlaps with short-term memory) and another linked with long-term memory. The research team divided 60 participants between the ages of 65 and 88 into three groups: one group wore the device but didn't get any electrical stimulation; the second received stimulation in the region associated with working memory; and the third received stimulation in the area associated with long-term memory.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Elon Musk Says Tesla's FSD Software Is Getting a Price Hike Soon - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 14:17
The price increase for the Full Self-Driving beta software is coming in early September.

Pokemon Go's Next Four Community Day Dates Have Been Announced - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 14:00
More Community Day events are just around the corner.

Fauci To Step Down in December After Decades of Public Service

SlashDot - Mon, 2022-08-22 14:00
Dr. Anthony Fauci, who played a critical role in steering humanity through the two pandemics of our time, AIDS and COVID-19, announced Monday he is stepping down from his role in the federal government. From a report: As of December, he will leave the position he's held for 38 years as the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as well as his job as chief of the NIAID Laboratory of Immunoregulation, and his role as Chief Medical Advisor to President Joe Biden. The straight-talking scientist and physician was the government's top infectious disease doctor for decades, and one of the few scientists that many Americans knew by name. Fauci, 81, served under seven U.S. presidents and helped lead the country through numerous health crises. He was instrumental in combatting the AIDS epidemic, starting as the youthful director of NIAID in the early 1980s. He also took center stage in a politically fraught response to the nation's COVID-19 pandemic, and he was both praised and assailed for his tell-it-like-it-is philosophy. Department of Health and Human Services secretary Xavier Becerra, who took leadership of the agency a year into the COVID pandemic, said he relied on Fauci's counsel and praised him for "his ability to break down complex science in simple terms to the American people to save lives." In a statement, President Biden lauded and thanked Fauci for his service to the American people and public health. He said: Because of Dr. Fauci's many contributions to public health, lives here in the United States and around the world have been saved. As he leaves his position in the US Government, I know the American people and the entire world will continue to benefit from Dr. Fauci's expertise in whatever he does next. Whether you've met him personally or not, he has touched all Americans' lives with his work. I extend my deepest thanks for his public service. The United States of America is stronger, more resilient, and healthier because of him.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

'Knives Out' Sequel 'Glass Onion' Release Set for Netflix on Dec. 23 - CNET

CNET News - Mon, 2022-08-22 13:56
The sequel to the murder mystery takes place on a private Mediterranean island owned by a tech billionaire.

Sony is reportedly working on a 'Gravity Rush' movie with Ridley Scott's production team

Engadget - Mon, 2022-08-22 13:38

Sony seems determined to turn every gaming property it has ever laid a finger on into a movie or TV show. PlayStation Productions has a whole heap of projects in the works and the latest, according to Deadline, is a Gravity Rush film.

The movie will be based on the 2012 PlayStation Vita game of the same name from Japan Studio's Team Gravity (the title was later remastered for PlayStation 4). You play as Kat, an amnesiac who can manipulate gravity to traverse an open world in a novel way. Kat uses her powers to protect the people of Hekseville from gravity storms and monsters. A sequel arrived on PS4 in 2017.

Ridley Scott's production company Scott Free Productions is reportedly working on the movie. Emily Jerome, the writer of upcoming thriller Panopticon, is working on the script. Anna Mastro, who helmed Disney+ film Secret Society of Second Born Royals and episodes of many notable TV shows, is onboard as director.

The Gravity Rush project underlines just how serious Sony is about expanding its gaming IP into the realms of film and television. It finally released an Uncharted movie earlier this year and over the weekend, it emerged that a Days Gone film is in development. That's on top of shows based on Twisted Metal,God of War and the Horizon games, as well as upcoming Gran Turismo and Ghost of Tsushima movies.

Last, but by no means least, a show based on The Last of Us is coming to HBO next year. The network released the first footage from the series in a sizzle reel on Sunday. With The Last of Us Day fast approaching, we likely won't have to wait long for a full trailer.

Why Stacking Chips Like Pancakes Could Mean a Huge Leap for Laptops

SlashDot - Mon, 2022-08-22 13:20
For decades, you could test a computer chip's mettle by how small and tightly packed its electronic circuitry was. Now Intel believes another dimension is as big a deal: how artfully a group of such chips can be packaged into a single, more powerful processor. From a report: At the Hot Chips conference Monday, Intel Chief Executive Pat Gelsinger will shine a spotlight on the company's packaging prowess. It's a crucial element to two new processors: Meteor Lake, a next-generation Core processor family member that'll power PCs in 2023, and Ponte Vecchio, the brains of what's expected to be the world's fastest supercomputer, Aurora. "Meteor Lake will be a huge technical innovation," thanks to how it packages, said Real World Tech analyst David Kanter. For decades, staying on the cutting edge of chip progress meant miniaturizing chip circuitry. Chipmakers make that circuitry with a process called photolithography, using patterns of light to etch tiny on-off switches called transistors onto silicon wafers. The smaller the transistors, the more designers can add for new features like accelerators for graphics or artificial intelligence chores. Now Intel believes building these chiplets into a package will bring the same processing power boost as the traditional photolithography technique.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.