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Biden Campaign Blasts Facebook for 'Regression'

Slashdot - 19 min 35 sec ago
On the eve of the first presidential debate, the Biden campaign is pressing Facebook to remove posts by President Trump -- and slamming the social media company as "the nation's foremost propagator of disinformation about the voting process." From a report: By publicly escalating the conflict, the campaign is pressing Facebook to enforce its policies against misinformation more aggressively. "Rather than seeing progress, we have seen regression," campaign manager Jen O'Malley Dillon wrote to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in a three-page letter obtained by Axios. "Facebookâ(TM)s continued promise of future action is serving as nothing more than an excuse for inaction," the letter says. "We will be calling out those failures as they occur over the coming 36 days." The other side: Andy Stone, a Facebook company spokesperson, tells Axios in a statement: "While many Republicans think we should take one course, many Democrats think we should do the exact opposite. "We've faced criticism from Republicans for being biased against conservatives and Democrats for not taking more steps to restrict the exact same content," he said. "We have rules in place to protect the integrity of the election and free expression, and we will continue to apply them impartially."

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DuckDuckGo cries fowl after being expunged from Google's Android search preferences menu for most of Europe

The Register - 46 min 31 sec ago
Pro-privacy upstart claims EU antitrust remedy is not fit for purpose

Privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo will no longer appear on Google's European search preference menu for Android in most countries, despite being the most popular choice after Google.…

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D-Wave's 5,000-Qubit Quantum Computing Platform Handles 1 Million Variables

Slashdot - 1 hour 14 min ago
D-Wave today launched its next-generation quantum computing platform available via its Leap quantum cloud service. The company calls Advantage "the first quantum computer built for business." In that vein, D-Wave today also debuted Launch, a jump-start program for businesses that want to begin building hybrid quantum applications. From a report: "The Advantage quantum computer is the first quantum computer designed and developed from the ground up to support business applications," D-Wave CEO Alan Baratz told VentureBeat. "We engineered it to be able to deal with large, complex commercial applications and to be able to support the running of those applications in production environments. There is no other quantum computer anywhere in the world that can solve problems at the scale and complexity that this quantum computer can solve problems. It really is the only one that you can run real business applications on. The other quantum computers are primarily prototypes. You can do experimentation, run small proofs of concept, but none of them can support applications at the scale that we can." Quantum computing leverages qubits (unlike bits that can only be in a state of 0 or 1, qubits can also be in a superposition of the two) to perform computations that would be much more difficult, or simply not feasible, for a classical computer. Based in Burnaby, Canada, D-Wave was the first company to sell commercial quantum computers, which are built to use quantum annealing. But D-Wave doesn't sell quantum computers anymore. Advantage and its over 5,000 qubits (up from 2,000 in the company's 2000Q system) are only available via the cloud. (That means through Leap or a partner like Amazon Braket.)

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Amnesty International To Halt India Operations

Slashdot - 1 hour 46 min ago
Amnesty International says it has been forced to halt its India operations due to "reprisals" from the government. From a report: The watchdog also accused the government of pursuing a "witch-hunt" against human rights organisations. Amnesty said its bank accounts had been frozen and it had been forced to lay off staff in the country and suspend all its campaign and research work. India's government said in a statement that the accusations were "unfortunate, exaggerated and far from the truth." Rajat Khosla, Amnesty's senior director of research, advocacy and policy, told the BBC: "We are facing a rather unprecedented situation in India. Amnesty International India has been facing an onslaught of attacks, bullying and harassment by the government in a very systematic manner. "This is all down to the human rights work that we were doing and the government not wanting to answer questions we raised, whether it's in terms of our investigations into the Delhi riots, or the silencing of voices in Jammu and Kashmir." In a report released last month, the group said police in the Indian capital, Delhi, committed human rights violations during deadly religious riots between Hindus and Muslims in February. Rebutting the claims, the Delhi police told The Hindu newspaper that Amnesty's report was "lopsided, biased and malicious." Earlier in August, on the first anniversary of the revocation of Indian-administered Kashmir's special status, Amnesty had called for the release of all detained political leaders, activists and journalists, and for the resumption of high-speed internet services in the region. In 2019, the watchdog testified before the US Foreign Affairs Committee during a hearing on human rights in South Asia, where it highlighted its findings on arbitrary detentions, and the use of excessive force and torture in Kashmir.

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UK mobile network EE plumps for Nokia to provide that all-important 5G RAN equipment

The Register - 1 hour 48 min ago
Is that a £500m Huawei-shaped hole you're looking to plug? The big rip 'n' replace begins

BT's EE has selected Nokia to fill the Huawei-shaped hole in its 5G network. The deal will involve Nokia providing crucial 5G RAN equipment, and make the Finnish giant BT's largest external vendor.…

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Amazon Will Now Let You Pay With Your Palm in Its Stores

Slashdot - 2 hours 26 min ago
Amazon accounts for nearly 40 percent of e-commerce sales in the US today, and it takes a cut of even more online shopping by selling payments services and other technologies to external shopping sites. Now, the online retail giant is making a play to grab a piece of brick-and-mortar shopping, too -- and it wants customers to literally lend a hand to do it. From a report: Amazon on Tuesday is unveiling a new biometric technology called Amazon One that allows shoppers to pay at stores by placing their palm over a scanning device when they walk in the door or when they check out. The first time they register to use this tech, a customer will scan their palm and insert their payment card at a terminal; after that, they can simply pay with their hand. The hand-scanning tech isn't just for Amazon's own stores -- the company hopes to sell it to other retailers, including competitors, too. The technology will be available at the entrance of two of the company's Amazon Go cashierless convenience stores in Seattle, Washington, starting Tuesday, and will roll out to the rest of the chain's 20-plus stores in the future, Amazon Vice President Dilip Kumar told Recode in an interview Monday. Recode reported in December that Amazon had filed a patent application for such a hand-payment technology. The technology could also show up in Whole Foods stores, with Amazon hinting in a press release that it will introduce palm payments in the coming months at its other stores beyondtAmazon Go locations. Kumar wouldn't comment on a potential Whole Foods implementation, though the New York Post reported a year ago that such a plan was in the works.

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Director of nuisance-calls company ordered to cough up £114k after ignoring £40k fine from UK data watchdog

The Register - 2 hours 48 min ago
Cost of enforcing IT Protect Ltd's initial penalty more than treble its value... no money yet collected

A director of a company fined £40,000 by the Information Commissioner's Office has himself been ordered to pay out more than £100,000 as part of a long-running collection saga.…

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Microsoft's Bing Will Have Key Slot on Some New Android Phones

Slashdot - 3 hours 6 min ago
Microsoft's Bing search app will appear as a download prompt on new Android phones in Germany, the U.K. and France after it won slots in a Google auction for rivals. From a report: Google announced the results of its October-December auction on Tuesday, showing info.com won slots on a choice screen for new Android phones in all 31 countries, PrivacyWall won slots in 22 countries, GMX in 16 countries and Bing in 13 countries. DuckDuckGo won just eight slots in smaller markets, down from a slot in each country in the last period.

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Groq is hard to grok but reckons its AI chips roq: Ex-Googlers' unorthodox design now shipping to customers

The Register - 3 hours 15 min ago
5U box can reach up to six quadrillion INT8 calculations per second, it is claimed

Video  Groq, an AI chip startup founded by ex-Googlers, today said it is now shipping its hardware to customers.…

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Xen Project officially ports its hypervisor to Raspberry Pi 4

The Register - 3 hours 47 min ago
'We were about to embark on an adventure deep in the belly of the memory allocator and Linux address translation layers'

The Xen project has officially ported its hypervisor to the Raspberry Pi – the 64-bit model 4, to be precise.…

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Arm hasn't given up on self-driving car brains – its new Cortex-A78AE is going into Nvidia's Orin chip, for a start

The Register - 4 hours 18 min ago
Yes, that Nvidia

Arm has teased us with a few details of its previously unseen Cortex-A78AE processor core – set to be the brains of Nvidia's next-gen self-driving car chip.…

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ESXi-on-Arm is real and VMware will use it to run networks, storage, and security on SmartNICs

The Register - 5 hours 3 min ago
Even third-party software could run there one day, managed by vSphere

VMware has, as The Register predicted, revealed plans to make the Arm-enabled cut of its ESXi hypervisor a proper product and will run it on SmartNICs in an attempt to better serve demanding applications and bring even bare-metal servers under its umbrella.…

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The perils of building a career on YouTube: Guitar teacher's channel nearly deleted after music publisher complains

The Register - 5 hours 33 min ago
Vid platform has biased its takedown procedures in favour of copyright owners, says lawyer

YouTube broadcaster Gareth Evans, who has 770,000 subscribers for his guitar tutorial channel, had an unwelcome surprise on 28 August.…

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EU's decision on UK data adequacy set to become 'political football' in broader Brexit negotiations

The Register - 6 hours 33 min ago
There are bigger fish to fry, but policy changes could still scupper a deal

No matter the legal reasoning, an "adequacy" decision to let data flow between the UK and the EU will hinge on the ups and downs of the wider Brexit negotiations, which are entering a tense final phase.…

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Yet another twist for 2020: Google says Android 12 will make it easier to install alternative app stores

The Register - 7 hours 16 min ago
And, cough, cough, don't forget to use Google Play's billing system

Google on Monday said it intends to make it easier to install alternative app stores on Android devices next year even as it moves to tighten compliance with Google Play payment rules.…

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Google Removes 17 Android Apps Caught Engaging In WAP Billing Fraud

Slashdot - 7 hours 18 min ago
Google has recently removed 17 Android applications from the official Play Store because they were infected with the Joker (aka Bread) malware. ZDNet reports: "This spyware is designed to steal SMS messages, contact lists, and device information, along with silently signing up the victim for premium wireless application protocol (WAP) services," Zscaler security researcher Viral Gandhi said this week. The 17 malicious apps were uploaded on the Play Store this month and didn't get a chance to gain a following, having been downloaded more than 120,000 times before being detected. Following its internal procedures, Google removed the apps from the Play Store, used the Play Protect service to disable the apps on infected devices, but users still need to manually intervene and remove the apps from their devices. But this recent takedown also marks the third such action from Google's security team against a batch of Joker-infected apps over the past few months. [...] The way these infected apps usually manage to sneak their way past Google's defenses and reach the Play Store is through a technique called "droppers," where the victim's device is infected in a multi-stage process. Malware authors begin by cloning the functionality of a legitimate app and uploading it on the Play Store. This app is fully functional, requests access to dangerous permissions, but also doesn't perform any malicious actions when it's first run. Because the malicious actions are usually delayed by hours or days, Google's security scans don't pick up the malicious code, and Google usually allows the app to be listed on the Play Store. But once on a user's device, the app eventually downloads and "drops" (hence the name droppers, or loaders) other components or apps on the device that contain the Joker malware or other malware strains.

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Ignite your SQL Server with a broken Cumulative Update

The Register - 7 hours 53 min ago
Plus: All the rest from Microsoft's shindig – it's only wafer-thin

In brief  Rounding out Ignite for all the wrong reasons came news last week that Microsoft had pulled Cumulative Update #7 for its flagship database product, SQL Server 2019.…

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G'day mate, I'll take two tinnies, a packet of Tim Tams, some Vegemite, and a bork

The Register - 8 hours 48 min ago
Do you come from a bork down under?

Bork!Bork!Bork!  Bork is going down under today after a Register reader eyeballed Windows doing its worst on a Canberra ATM.…

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McAfee seeks $2bn return to stock market after Intel unpleasantness

The Register - 9 hours 49 min ago
Warns investors that big clouds could start to sell native security tools direct to customers and reduce the need for third-party vendors

Security software outfit McAfee has filed to return to the stock market.…

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Good news: Euro sat spots liquid pools on Mars. Bad news: Under ice, saltier than someone who put last penny into a failed crypto biz

The Register - 10 hours 24 min ago
ESA also finds planet hot enough to melt iron

Video  Pools of salty liquid surround a larger lake of water hidden beneath a thick crust of ice below the Martian south pole. That's according to findings published in Nature Astronomy on Monday.…

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