Last updated 17 Sep, 04:40 AM
BBC News - Home
Boris Johnson to 'see what judges say' on recalling Parliament - The Supreme Court will hear two appeals that will determine whether the PM acted lawfully in suspending Parliament.
Universities 'failing' victims of sexual misconduct - Dozens of students say they were "traumatised" by investigations that left them feeling unsafe on campus.
Israelis vote in second general election in five months - PM Benjamin Netanyahu fights for a fifth term after failing to form a coalition during the summer.
Looking back at 100 days of protests in Hong Kong - How a controversial extradition bill with China sparked months of violent protest.
Prostate drug may slow Parkinson's disease - A medicine for enlarged prostates may benefit brain cells damaged by Parkinson's, scientists find.
Larry Ellison tiers Amazon a new one: Oracle cloud gets 'always' free offer, plus something about Linux - El Reg decodes Big Red's big announcements from today OpenWorld Oracle on Monday debuted a free, self-fixing Linux distribution for paying Oracle Cloud customers, and a free Cloud service tier that includes a limited version of its paid Autonomous Database, for winning developer favor and fostering future Cloud customers.…
IBM looks to boost sales the same way it has for 65 years – yes, it's a new mainframe: The z15 - Lineup looks to put a pep in the step of flailing systems group IBM this month officially unveiled the newest addition to the Z-series mainframe lineup in roughly two years.…
Face-recognizing cop body cams hit another hurdle, genderless voice assistants, and more - One of these days we'll use machine learning to write these AI news summaries Roundup Let's catch up with recent goings on in the world of artificial intelligence.…
Fitbit fitness fans furious following flummoxing flawed firmware float, fleeting feedback, failed fixes - Punters say their gear has been messed up for a month-plus Fitbit wearers are super-upset that a buggy software update has for the past month made their wearable exercise trackers unable to properly sync with their Android devices.…
The results are in… and California’s GDPR-ish digital privacy law has survived onslaught by Google and friends - Five amendments to law approved before deadline, none undercut core goals Analysis California’s landmark digital privacy law will remain “largely intact” despite a year of determined lobbying by Google and other tech giants to undermine it.…
New Scientist - News
New species of giant salamander is the world's largest amphibian - The South China giant salamander, one of two new species of giant salamander, may grow to be almost 2 metres long - making it the worlds largest amphibian
One in 16 US women were forced into having sex for the first time - One in 16 US girls and women were forced into having sex for the first time, either physically or through other kinds of pressure
Black hole that 'rings' like a bell shows Einstein was right - Astronomers have looked at the way a black hole 'rings' like a bell to test a prediction of Einstein’s general relativity. Turns out Einstein is still right
Vikings probably hunted Iceland's walruses to extinction for ivory - Iceland had a unique population of walruses that disappeared after people first settled there – probably because the Vikings hunted them to extinction
Fires devastating Australia’s east coast have arrived unusually early - Bush fires across Australia’s east coast have arrived uncharacteristically early in the year, prompting fears for the upcoming summer
Spouse of Ring Exec Among Lawmakers Trying To Weaken California Privacy Law - An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: The California legislature worked through the summer to finalize the text of the state's landmark data privacy law before time to make amendments ran out on Friday. In the Assembly (California's lower house), Assemblywoman Jacqui Irwin has been a key voice and vote backing motions that would weaken the law, and a new report says her reasoning may be very, very close to home. A review of state ethics documents conducted by Politico found that Ms. Irwin is married to Jon Irwin, the chief operating officer of Amazon's controversial Ring home surveillance business. That company stands to benefit if the California law is weakened in certain key ways before it can take effect. One proposal put forth by Assemblywoman Irwin would expand what kind of data would be exempt from CCPA provisions, and this drew the ire of consumer protection groups, Politico reports. Irwin also initially proposed striking out "a provision requiring companies to disclose or delete data associated with 'households' upon request," a regulation that will likely affect companies like Ring. She also voted against an amendment that would have required smart speaker systems, like Amazon's Alexa or Google Home, to obtain user consent to sell recorded conversations, and "used store security-camera footage as an example of data that would be burdensome and risky for businesses to be required to link to consumers in response to data-deletion requests." Assemblywoman Irwin told Politico she found questions about her spouse to be offensive, given her own personal background as a systems engineer. "My role in the privacy debate in the Legislature is focused on bringing people together and solving the practical issues posed to us as policy makers and is independent of any job or role my husband may have," she said. The California Consumer Privacy Act was signed into law in June 2018 by California nGovernor Gavin Newsom. "This legislation gives California residents several protections with regard to their personal information, including the rights to know what is being collected, what is being sold, and to whom it is being sold," reports Ars Technica. "It also grants Californians the right to access their personal information, the right to delete data collected from them, and the right to opt out -- without being charged extra for services if they choose to do so." Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Milton's Notes On Shakespeare Appear To Have Been Found - Almost 400 years after the first folio of Shakespeare was published in 1623, scholars believe they have identified the early owner of one copy of the text, who made hundreds of insightful annotations throughout: John Milton. The Guardian reports: The astonishing find, which academics say could be one of the most important literary discoveries of modern times, was made by Cambridge University fellow Jason Scott-Warren when he was reading an article about the anonymous annotator by Pennsylvania State University English professor Claire Bourne. Bourne's study of this copy, which has been housed in the Free Library of Philadelphia since 1944, dated the annotator to the mid-17th century, finding them alive to "the sense, accuracy, and interpretative possibility of the dialogue." She also provided many images of the handwritten notes, which struck Scott-Warren as looking oddly similar to Milton's hand. The first folio is the first collected edition of Shakespeare's plays, published seven years after his death. Without it, 18 plays including Macbeth and The Tempest might have been lost to history. Around 750 first folios were printed, with 233 known to survive. They command huge sums at auction, with one selling for 1.87 million pounds three years ago. Scott-Warren has made a detailed comparison of the annotator's handwriting with the Paradise Lost poet's. He also believes that the work the annotator did to improve the text of the folio -- suggesting corrections and supplying additional material such as the prologue to Romeo and Juliet, along with cross-references to other works -- is similar to work Milton did in other books that survive from his library, including his copy of Boccaccio's Life of Dante. Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Drivers May Choose Electric Car Alert Sounds, US Proposal Says - The NHTSA is now proposing drivers be able to select an electric-car alert sound at speeds under 18.6 mph. "NHTSA wants the public's opinion 'on whether there should be a limit to the number of compliant sounds that a manufacturer can install in a vehicle and what that limit should be,'" adds CNET. From the report: As of this month, automakers are required to equip 50% of their "quiet cars," which applies to silent electric vehicles, with an alert noise at low speeds. The rules, first brought about in 2010, have been delayed for years, but come 2020, every quiet vehicle will need the alert mechanism. Regulators concluded cars make enough noise from tire and wind noise to forego the alert above 18.6 mph (that's 30 kph in case you're wondering why so precise a figure). Think of the sound as a gentle reminder when strolling through parking lots with cars backing out of spaces and crawling through the area. It's nice to hear a car approach, and something we take for granted with internal-combustion engines. NHTSA said the alert will help prevent 2,400 injuries annually. Read more of this story at Slashdot.
CentOS 8 To Be Released Next Week - New submitter JDShewey writes: The CentOS Project has announced that CentOS 8.0 will be available for download beginning Tuesday, September 24. This release was deferred so that work to release CentOS 7.7 could be completed, which means that CentOS 7.7 will be out shortly as well (and 7.7 it is already beginning to appear in mirrors and repos). This comes 20 weeks to the day from the release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8. Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Apple Takes On EU's Vestager In Record $14 Billion Tax Fight - An anonymous reader quotes a report from Bloomberg: Apple fights the world's biggest tax case in a quiet courtroom this week, trying to rein in the European Union's powerful antitrust chief ahead of a potential new crackdown on internet giants. The iPhone maker can tell the EU General Court in Luxembourg that it's the world's biggest taxpayer. But that's not enough for EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager who said in a 2016 ruling that Apple's tax deals with Ireland allowed the company to pay far less than other businesses. The court must now weigh whether regulators were right to levy a record 13 billion-euro ($14.4 billion) tax bill. A court ruling, likely to take months, could empower or halt Vestager's tax probes, which are now centering on fiscal deals done by Amazon.com and Alphabet. She's also been tasked with coming up with a "fair European tax" by the end of 2020 if global efforts to reform digital taxation don't make progress. Vestager showed her determination to fight the tax cases to the end by opening new probes into 39 companies' tax deals with Belgium on Monday. The move addresses criticism by the same court handling the Apple challenge. A February judgment threw out her 2016 order for them to pay back about 800 million euros. At the same time she's pushing for "fair international tax rules so that digitization doesn't allow companies to avoid paying their fair share of tax," according to a speech to German ambassadors last month. She urged them to use "our influence to build an international environment that helps us reach our goals" in talks on a new global agreement to tax technology firms. After the 2016 EU order, Apple CEO Tim Cook blasted the EU move as "total political crap." "The company's legal challenge claims the EU wrongly targeted profits that should be taxed in the U.S. and 'retroactively changed the rules' on how global authorities calculate what's owed to them," reports Bloomberg. Read more of this story at Slashdot.