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November, 2018

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Captain Marvel: New trailer arrives, plus release date, cast, plot info and more – CNET

Grab your pager and get ready to head back to the 1990s for a solo film about a Marvel heroine who just might save the universe. Here’s what we know. …read more

Source:: CNet

Fresh releases of TypeScript and Visual Studio 2017 for Mac round out November

BigInt and .NET Core 2.2 support? Oh Microsoft, you spoil us!

On the eve of Microsoft’s big developer shindig, or rather virtual developer shindig, Connect(); a fresh version of TypeScript has been released, along with an update for Visual Studio users who like their OS Apple-flavoured.…

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Source:: TheRegister

Retrotechtacular: Some Of The Last CRTs From The Factory Floor

Sony Trinitron Television

It seems crazy having to explain what a piece of technology was like to someone who is barely fifteen years your junior, but yet we have reached that point when it comes to CRTs. There may still be remnants of CRT televisions and monitors left out in the wild, however, the chances that a kid preparing to enter high school has encountered one is slim. While there may be no substitute for the real thing, there is this raw video from [Glenn] who shared his tour of the Sony Trinitron assembly line in the early 2000s.

Sony Electronics’ cathode ray tube manufacturing facility was located alongside headquarters in Rancho Bernado, CA. The facility was shuttered in 2006 when Sony transitioned wholly onto digital displays like the flat-panel LCD line of Bravia televisions. [Glenn]’s video shows that the manufacturing process was almost entirely automated from end to end. A point that was made even more clear with the distinct lack of human beings in the video.

The Trinitron line of televisions first appeared in 1968. At a time where most manufacturer’s were offering black and white picture tubes, Sony’s Trinitron line was in color. That name carried through until the end when it was retired alongside tube televisions themselves. Sony’s focus on technological innovation (and proprietary media formats) made them a giant in the world of consumer electronics for over forty years in the United States, but in the transition to a digital world saw them seeding market share to their competitors.

A quick word of warning as the video below was shot directly on Sony’s factory floor so the machinery is quite loud. Viewers may want to reduce the volume prior to pressing play.

Because they don’t build them like they used to, there’s also this Retrotechtacular feature on the manufacturing of CRT televisions in the 1950s.

…read more

Source:: Hackaday

Does Google Harm Local Search Rivals? EU Antitrust Regulators Ask

EU antitrust regulators have asked Google’s rivals if the internet search giant unfairly demotes local search competitors, according to a questionnaire seen by Reuters, a move which could lead to a fourth case against the Alphabet unit. From a report: Google has been fined a total 6.76 billion euros ($7.7 billion) in the last 17 months for favoring its comparison shopping service and for using its dominant Android mobile operating system to reinforce its search engine market power. The European Commission, which took the world’s most popular internet search engine to task for these two anti-competitive practices, is wrapping up a third case which involves Google’s AdSense advertising service. The EU competition authority’s interest in local search services followed a complaint by U.S. search and advertising company Yelp and rivals in the travel, restaurant and accommodation industries. Further reading: In an Open Letter To EU’s Competition Commissioner, 14 European Shopping Comparison Services Say Google is Not Making the Search For Products Fairer.

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Source:: Slashdot

Facebook Quietly Hired Republican Strategy Firm Targeted Victory

Facebook is still reeling from the revelation that it hired an opposition research firm with close ties to the Republican party, but its relationship with Definers Public Affairs isn’t the company’s only recent contract work with deeply GOP-linked strategy firms. TechCrunch reports: According to sources familiar with the project, Facebook also contracted with Targeted Victory, described as “the GOP’s go-to technology consultant firm.” Targeted Victory worked with Facebook on the company’s Community Boost roadshow, a tour of U.S. cities meant to stimulate small business interest in Facebook as a business and ad platform. The ongoing Community Boost initiative, announced in late 2017, kicked off earlier this year with stops in cities like and Topeka, Kansas and Albuquerque, New Mexico. Facebook also worked with Targeted Victory on the company’s ad transparency efforts. Over the last year, Facebook has attempted to ward off regulation from Congress over ad disclosure, even putting forth some self-regulatory efforts to appease legislators.

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Source:: Slashdot

Prez Trump to host chinwag with Google, Microsoft, Oracle and Qualcomm – report

And Sundar Pichai heads to griling on Chocolate Factory’s data slurping

Execs from Oracle, Microsoft and Google are reportedly to meet US president Donald Trump next week amid strained relations between tech giants and lawmakers.…

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Source:: TheRegister

Pokemon Go may be getting multiplayer battles soon – CNET

Niantic is teasing “Trainer Battles” on social media. …read more

Source:: CNet

Companies ‘Can Sack Workers For Refusing To Use Fingerprint Scanners’

Businesses using fingerprint scanners to monitor their workforce can legally sack employees who refuse to hand over biometric information on privacy grounds, the Fair Work Commission has ruled. From a report: The ruling, which will be appealed, was made in the case of Jeremy Lee, a Queensland sawmill worker who refused to comply with a new fingerprint scanning policy introduced at his work in Imbil, north of the Sunshine Coast, late last year. Fingerprint scanning was used to monitor the clock-on and clock-off times of about 150 sawmill workers at two sites and was preferred to swipe cards because it prevented workers from fraudulently signing in on behalf of their colleagues to mask absences.

The company, Superior Woods, had no privacy policy covering workers and failed to comply with a requirement to properly notify individuals about how and why their data was being collected and used. The biometric data was stored on servers located off-site, in space leased from a third party. Lee argued the business had never sought its workers’ consent to use fingerprint scanning, and feared his biometric data would be accessed by unknown groups and individuals.

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Source:: Slashdot

Building Portable Linux Devices: Never Been Easier, But Still Hard

We live in a Golden Age of single-board computers. There was a time when a portable computer that was any good was a relatively rare and expensive device, certainly not something you could expect to replicate for yourself. A Psion, or later a Palm or perhaps a WinCE device would have been a lot more than an impulse purchase, and could not easily have been replicated using the components then available to the experimenter.

Thanks to spin-offs from technology developed for set-top boxes and mobile phones we can now buy any one of a pile of different boards that have almost equivalent power to a desktop computer. The experimenter can leverage that computing power to create their own small portables. Zerophone creator Arsenijs Picugins spoke about the tricky parts of designing a LInux portable at the recent Hackaday Superconference. You’ll find his talk below the break, which makes for a fascinating primer for those tempted to walk in his footsteps.

Zerophone – a Raspberry Pi Smartphone

Minor Details of Portables are the Majority of the Build

In theory, it’s pretty easy to use one of these boards to make a portable computer. Take one of the smaller members of the Raspberry Pi or Beaglebone families, add a battery and a display, and away you go. But as always the devil is in the detail, and for a truly successful build there are a wealth of variables to attend to.

In his talk, Arsenijs takes us through the challenges of power supplies, connectors, and interfaces. In particular there is considerable challenge to running an SBC from a battery small enough to be portable, as efficiency concerns and the ability to easily recharge make for a critical set of choices. Then we learn of another pitfall, that of using USB as a default interface. Power loss in converting 5V to 3.3V that is inconsequential for a desktop computer is a battery-killer in a small device, so we’re pointed at the array of alternatives.

Zerophone screen menu [via @ZeroPhoneOSHW]

Screen Size is a Tricky Spec to Settle

If you’ve been tempted by one of those cheap Raspberry Pi touch screens, you’ll certainly understand that while a full desktop on a screen the size of a playing card looks cool, the reality is almost unusable. Your device will require a user interface that fits its form factor, which from his experience, Arsenijs suggests is best achieved through the medium of buttons rather than a touchscreen on smaller screens. There are a variety of UI and display libraries he introduces us to which make the whole process significantly easier.

Arsenijs’ Zerophone Raspberry Pi smartphone was a finalist in the 2017 Hackaday Prize, and remains an exemplary portable project from which many others can gain inspiration. We are privileged that he was able to bring his experience to speak at …read more

Source:: Hackaday

Bing Warns VLC Media Player Site is ‘Suspicious’ in Likely False-Positive Gaff

After identifying the official VLC media download page as “unsafe” with its Bing search engine, Microsoft now suggests it was done in error. …read more

Source:: Threatpost

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