Latest News

Last updated 19 Jul, 02:30 PM

BBC News - Home

Public sector workers 'to get above-inflation pay rise' - Dentists, teachers and police officers are reportedly to get pay increases of between 2% and 2.9%.

Philip Hammond will 'not exclude' backing no confidence vote to stop no-deal Brexit - The chancellor says he'll do "everything in my power" to stop a no-deal Brexit.

Man who shouted abuse at MP admits offences - James Goddard, 29, who shouted abuse at MP Anna Soubry outside Parliament admits public order offences in court

Greek earthquake: Powerful tremor shakes Athens - The earthquake, registered at 5.1 magnitude, knocked out telecoms and power in parts of the city.

Lucy McHugh murder case: Stephen Nicholson jailed for life - Thirteen-year-old Lucy McHugh had "unknown promise, cruelly obliterated", the judge said.

The Register

Estate agent dodges GDPR-sized bullet after exposing 18,610 folks' data for two years - Fined £80,000 under Data Protection Act – could have been a lot more under new EU rules A London estate agent has been fined £80,000 for losing thousands of clients' personal data when it was handed over to a third party.…

You totally need VMs to do AI, nods VMware as Bitfusion dissolves in its vSphere of influence - Virty GPU upstart joins the fold Crusty old VMware is attempting to keep up with the youngsters by acquiring Bitfusion, a startup that claims to enable machine learning on any VM via the magic of network-attached GPUs.…

Your biz won't be hacked by a super-leet exploit. It'll be Bob in sales opening a dodgy email - Or Sam connecting a vulnerable dev box to production. Here's your gentle guide to risks and threats menacing your IT Backgrounder The good news for enterprise security is that the number of reported cyberattacks is going down, in the UK at least.…

Excluding Huawei from UK's 5G will harm security, MPs warn - A decision must be made as a 'matter of urgency', says Intelligence and Security Committee Excluding Huawei from the UK's 5G network infrastructure would harm resilience and "lower security standards", the Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) warned today.…

BT staffers fear new mums could be hit disproportionately by car allowance change - People Framework strikes again: 'Employees feel worse off and demoted' A number of female staff at BT that take maternity leave could be disproportionately affected by plans to remove car allowances from certain employees.…

New Scientist - News

Does the drop in US drug deaths mean the opioid crisis is ending? - Overdose deaths in the US have dropped for the first time in two decades, but many people are still dependent on painkillers and struggling to get them legally

Hawaii declares state of emergency amid protests over huge telescope - The planned construction of an enormous telescope atop Mauna Kea is being blocked by Hawaiian protesters for whom the mountain is sacred land

AI passes theory of mind test by imagining itself in another's shoes - AI has passed a test used to assess theory of mind in dominant and subordinate chimpanzees, paving the way towards machines that are more effective at communicating with humans

Weird new type of magnetic liquid could be used to control soft robots - A strange liquid magnet full of iron nanoparticles can change its shape in a magnetic field, and it may eventually be used to make wireless, moving soft robots

Adding more bioethanol to petrol is no way to go green - Making “greener” fuels by adding bioethanol to petrol will wreck the environment, not save it. We need to focus on making electric cars work, says Michael Le Page

Hacker News

Slack Security Incident for Keybase CEO - Comments

Show HN: I built a service to discover exploding trends - Comments

∂P: A Differentiable Programming System to Bridge ML and Scientific Computing - Comments

Dropbox silently installs new file manager app on users’ systems - Comments

Argdown - Comments

Slashdot

NSO Spyware 'Targets Big Tech Cloud Services' - The Israeli company whose spyware hacked WhatsApp has told buyers its technology can surreptitiously scrape all of an individual's data from the servers of Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft, Financial Times reported on Friday. [Editor's note: the link may be paywalled; alternative source] From the report: NSO Group's flagship smartphone malware, nicknamed Pegasus, has for years been used by spy agencies and governments to harvest data from targeted individuals' smartphones. But it has now evolved to capture the much greater trove of information stored beyond the phone in the cloud, such as a full history of a target's location data, archived messages or photos, according to people who shared documents with the Financial Times and described a recent product demonstration. The documents raise difficult questions for Silicon Valley's technology giants, which are trusted by billions of users to keep critical personal information, corporate secrets and medical records safe from potential hackers. NSO denied promoting hacking or mass-surveillance tools for cloud services. However, it did not specifically deny that it had developed the capability described in the documents. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Locally Run ISPs Offer the Fastest Broadband In America - An anonymous reader quotes a report from Motherboard: Using data from 356,925 broadband speed tests conducted over a year, PCMag recently compiled a list of the fastest ISPs in America. ISPs were then affixed a PCMag Speed Index score based on a combination of line performance, upload, and download speeds. When all regional ISPs were compared side by side, the fastest ISP in America was independent California ISP Sonic, with a score of 610.6. Sonic has been working with select California communities to leverage their publicly-owned fiber networks. All told, six of the ten fastest ISPs in the States were either directly run by a local community, or involved some form of partnership between the public and private sectors. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Chinese Space Station Tiangong-2 Is About To Fall From Space - The Chinese space station Tiangong-2 is scheduled to drop out of orbit on July 19 and fall into the Pacific Ocean between New Zealand and Chile. New Scientist reports: Tiangong-2 -- which translates as "heavenly palace" -- was launched in September 2016, and it was never intended to be a permanent fixture in orbit. Instead, its purpose was to test technologies for China's larger planned space station, whose main module is scheduled to launch in 2020. That space station is planned to be about one-fifth the size of the International Space Station. Tiangong-2 is far smaller. In 2018, Tiangong-2 began to lower its orbit to prepare for the end of its mission. On 19 July, it will fire its thrusters again to aim its descent toward the Pacific Ocean. Most of the craft will probably burn up as it enters the atmosphere, but any parts that survive should splash into the water harmlessly. Its predecessor, Tiangong-1, lost power in April 2018 and crashed in an uncontrolled fashion. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Google and Facebook Might Be Tracking Your Porn History, Researchers Warn - Researchers at Microsoft, Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pennsylvania analyzed 22,484 porn sites and found that 93% leak user data to a third party. Normally, for extra protection when surfing the web, a user might turn to incognito mode. But, the researchers said, incognito mode only ensures that your browsing history is not stored on your computer. CNET reports: According to a study released Monday, Google was the No. 1 third-party company. The research found that Google, or one of its subsidiaries like the advertising platform DoubleClick, had trackers on 74% of the pornography sites examined. Facebook had trackers on 10% of the sites. "In the U.S., many advertising and video hosting platforms forbid 'adult' content. For example, Google's YouTube is the largest video host in the world, but does not allow pornography," the researchers wrote. "However, Google has no policies forbidding websites from using their code hosting (Google APIs) or audience measurement tools (Google Analytics). Thus, Google refuses to host porn, but has no limits on observing the porn consumption of users, often without their knowledge." Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Google Glass May Have an Afterlife As a Device To Teach Autistic Children - While Google stopped selling its augmented-reality glasses to customers due to privacy concerns, Google Glass lived on as something to be used by researchers and businesses. The New York Times reports of a new effort from Stanford researchers to use Google Glass to help autistic children understand emotions and engage in more direct ways with those around them. The glasses could also be used to measure changes in behavior, something that has historically been difficult to do. An anonymous Slashdot reader shares an excerpt from the report: When Esaie Prickett sat down in the living room with his mother, father and four older brothers, he was the only one wearing Google Glass. As Esaie, who was 10 at the time and is 12 now, gazed through the computerized glasses, his family made faces -- happy, sad, surprised, angry, bored -- and he tried to identify each emotion. In an instant, the glasses told him whether he was right or wrong, flashing tiny digital icons that only he could see. Esaie was 6 when he and his family learned he had autism. The technology he was using while sitting in the living room was meant to help him learn how to recognize emotions and make eye contact with those around him. The glasses would verify his choices only if he looked directly at a face. He and his family tested the technology for several weeks as part of a clinical trial run by researchers at Stanford University in and around the San Francisco Bay Area. Recently detailed in The Journal of the American Medical Association, Pediatrics, the trial fits into a growing effort to build new technologies for children on the autism spectrum, including interactive robots and computerized eyewear. Read more of this story at Slashdot.