Category Archives: News

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Covid Caused Most Deaths in U.S. Police Officers in 2021, Report Says

Source: NYT > U.S.

Article note: "Warrior Mindset" meets COVID comorbidities.

Nearly 460 officers died in the line of duty in 2021, making it the deadliest in more than 90 years. Some officers and police unions continue to push back against vaccine mandates.

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Samsung no-showed on its major Exynos 2200 launch and won’t say why

Source: Ars Technica

Photoshopped question marks surround a smart device that displays the words Samsung Exynos.

Enlarge (credit: Samsung / Ron Amadeo)

So here's a crazy story. Samsung was supposed to have a big SoC launch today, but that launch did not happen. Samsung didn't cancel or delay the event. The January 11 date was announced, and we even wrote about it, but when the time for the event came, nothing happened! Samsung pulled a no-call no-show for a major product launch. It's the end of the day now, and the company has yet to respond to what must be hundreds of press inquiries that are no-doubt flooding its email inbox, including ours! Samsung stood up the entire tech industry, and now it won't say why. Nobody knows what is going on.

The Exynos 2200 was (?) shaping up to be a major launch for Samsung. It is, after all, the first Samsung SoC with the headline-grabbing feature of having an AMD GPU. The two companies announced this deal a year ago, and we've been giddy about it ever since. The Exynos 2200 is (or was) going to debut in the Galaxy S22. That launch event is currently scheduled for February 8, assuming Samsung doesn't ghost everyone again.

Samsung announced the Exynos 2200 event just 12 days ago, saying, "Stay tuned for the next Exynos with the new GPU born from RDNA 2. January 11, 2022." (RDNA 2 is an AMD GPU architecture). In addition to a tweet from the official, verified, @SamsungExynos account, the company also cut a promo video ending with the January 11 2022 date. You can still watch it at archive.org. The closest thing Samsung has done to communicate about the status of the Exynos 2200 is to delete its tweets promoting the show.

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Why is Zynga worth a whopping $12.7 billion? (Hint: It’s not FarmVille)

Source: Ars Technica

Article note: Because Zynga are ruthless whale hunters that make Rovio look principled and ethical, and freemium mobile shit is proving to be the optimal way to turn entertainment products into profits.
The company that publishes <em>Grand Theft Auto</em> now owns all of these goofballs, too...

Enlarge / The company that publishes Grand Theft Auto now owns all of these goofballs, too... (credit: Zynga)

Major console game publisher Take-Two has acquired social and mobile gaming giant Zynga for a whopping $12.7 billion in cash and stock, making the deal the largest acquisition of a single gaming company in history.

That might seem like a ludicrous price if your familiarity with Zynga is limited to FarmVille, CityVille, and other Zynga games that came to dominate the "social gaming" fad of the early 2010s (and led to the creation of some excellent books, if I do say so myself). But while the original FarmVille merely limped along until 2010, Zynga has successfully transitioned into a casual mobile gaming powerhouse by spending billions of dollars on acquisitions like Gram Games (1010) and Small Giant Games (Empire & Puzzles) in 2018, as well as Peak Games (Toon Blast) and Rollic (Go Knots 3D) in 2020. Last year, the company even dipped into PC games with the acquisition of Torchlight studio Echtra Games.

With those companies gathered under the Zynga umbrella, the company now attracts over 168 million monthly users and made $706 million in revenue in the latest reporting quarter.

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Developer sabotages his own apps, then claims Aaron Swartz was murdered

Source: Ars Technica

Article note: Oof, I expected the "Everything about the node ecosystem is dumb" and "I realized I've been enabling profit-seeking parasites and objected" parts of the story. I'm not even super shocked by the the oddly placed but (only in the broad sense, not the specifics) vaguely reasonable middle-fingers-up-for-Aaron connection. But then it veers in a whole new crazy Qnut flavored direction that wasn't even an option until a few years ago.
Stock photo of the lit fuse of a stick of dynamite or firework.

Enlarge (credit: James Brey / iStockPhoto / Getty Images)

The developer who sabotaged two of his own open source code libraries, causing disruptions for thousands of apps that used them, has a colorful past that includes embracing a QAnon theory involving Aaron Swartz, the well-known hacktivist and programmer who died by suicide in 2013.

Marak Squires, the author of two JavaScript libraries with more than 21,000 dependent apps and more than 22 million weekly downloads, updated his projects late last week after they remained unchanged for more than a year. The updates contained code to produce an infinite loop that caused dependent apps to spew gibberish, prefaced by the words “Liberty Liberty Liberty.” The update sent developers scrambling as they attempted to fix their malfunctioning apps.

What really happened with Aaron Swartz?

Squires provided no reason for the move, but in a readme file accompanying last week’s malicious update, he included the words “What really happened with Aaron Swartz?”

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Dev corrupts NPM libs ‘colors’ and ‘faker’, breaking thousands of apps

Source: Hacker News

Article note: Oh Node ecosystem. I though you were a joke for years (a literal "no one seriously uses this" joke), and it keeps turning out I was right, just not how I thought.
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Keyboard lets people type so fast it’s banned from typing competitions

Source: Hacker News

Article note: That's an interesting object. It's sort of a conventional chorder, it's sort of a sliding-element input device, it's sort of a stenographic input device.
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Elizabeth Holmes found guilty on 4 of 11 charges

Source: Ars Technica

Article note: Guilty of fraud against investors who knowingly risked their money on her pitch, but we don't really give a shit about the patients given bogus diagnostic information from machines that never existed. How American.
Theranos founder and former CEO Elizabeth Holmes and her partner, Billy Evans, right, leave the Robert F. Peckham Federal Building on November 23, 2021, in San Jose, Calif.

Enlarge / Theranos founder and former CEO Elizabeth Holmes and her partner, Billy Evans, right, leave the Robert F. Peckham Federal Building on November 23, 2021, in San Jose, Calif. (credit: Ethan Swope/Getty Images)

Elizabeth Holmes was convicted today of three counts of criminal wire fraud and one count of criminal conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The jury delivered its verdict after six days of deliberation.

The government’s victory in the case is a rare rebuke for tech startups, which often pitch investors on their technological prowess and business acumen using wildly optimistic assumptions.

Theranos was, perhaps, an extreme example, raising over $900 million on the back of claims that its proprietary tests were better, cheaper, and less invasive than the competition. None of those claims was true, and unlike many other Silicon Valley startups, the health and safety of patients was on the line.

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Kentucky reports record COVID-19 positivity rate

Source: Kentucky.com -- State

Article note: Oh boy! New high! New more transmissible variant, holiday mingling... the start of the semester is going to be wild.

Kentucky has reported a record COVID-19 test positivity rate of 14.46%, Gov. Andy Beshear announced Wednesday. “Folks, it’s clear Kentucky is now in a surge from Omicron, ” Beshear said … Click to Continue »

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Federal Court Ruling Will Make Wifi 6E a Reality

Source: Slashdot

Article note: Hell Yeah! We've been in desperate need of more unlicensed spectrum suitable for short-range connectivity for some time.

Federal courts have opened the door for what may amount to the most substantial wifi upgrade in over twenty years. From a report: On Tuesday, a U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued a ruling where it supported the FCC's decision to divvy up 1,200MHz of spectrum in the 6GHz band for unlicensed use, a move that paves the way for the eagerly anticipated move to wifi 6E. Prior to the ruling, wifi was limited to broadcasting over 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. That new spectrum represents the single largest addition since wifi was first introduced in 1989, the Verge notes. To put that in perspective, prior to the FCC's additions, wifi operated with just 400MHz of the spectrum. With that in mind, this new ruling should essentially increase the space available to wifi by four times. When implemented, all this additional spectrum could provide enough capacity to allow seven maximum capacity wifi streams to broadcast in the same areas without interfering with one another, The Verge notes. Put more simply, this should translate to increased bandwidth with less interference for everyday users. Proponents of the FCC's decision, like agency Chair Jessica Rosenworcel, argue it will provide more wifi access in a greater number of places while simultaneously improving performance. All this extra space could also increase upload and download speeds as well.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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A new theory of rising college costs

Source: The Week: Most Recent Home Page Posts

Article note: Huh. I'd seen "We're making them provide social services outside their scope that a functional society would offer universally" proposed for primary/secondary school dysfunction, but not for colleges and universities. It's not a bad model, it ties a couple of the observable problems together.

Tuition would be lower if our society were stronger

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