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R: 17 / I: 2 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Irish Medical Journal Warns Against Shooting Up Semen For Science

Don't intravenously inject your own semen in your body! It's not the kind of thing you expect to have to explain to someone, but you have to realize everytime you read a disclaimer warning that the flea and tick remover is for external use only or other obvious instructions, that likely at least one person made that stupid mistake before the admonition was added to the package.


R: 1 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

'I didn't feel safe': NBA star Enes Kanter skips London game over Turkey assassination fears

>Turkey issues international arrest warrant for Kanter after he criticizes Turkish president

A day after Turkish prosecutors issued an international warrant for his arrest, NBA star Enes Kanter skipped a game in London this week — citing fears he could be killed by the Turkish government.

Kanter says he's being targeted for his place as an outspoken critic of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who he has previously called "the Hitler of our century."

Despite his place as a public figure, both he and the New York Knicks organization believed the threat to his life serious enough for him to stay in New York and not risk the trip to Britain. The Knicks went on to lose the game to the Washington Wizards Thursday by a single point.


R: 2 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

'Ross from Friends' thief suspect turns out to look nothing like him after all

>New image released by Lancashire Police

A 'lookalike' of Friends actor David Schwimmer has been arrested after failing to attend court before Christmas.

Lancashire Police released a mugshot of Abdulah Husseini after he failed to appear in court in Blackpool over allegations of theft and fraud - and despite the previous CCTV image going viral over the likeness to Friends character Ross Geller, the new image appears to look nothing like the Friends star.


R: 2 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Londonderry: Bomb explodes in car outside courthouse

A bomb has exploded inside a car outside the courthouse in Londonderry.

The explosion occurred in Bishop Street at about 20:15 GMT on Saturday, shortly after police received a warning.

Officers were on the scene when the blast occurred. No one is believed to have been injured.

Police had just started evacuating nearby buildings, including a hotel, when the explosion took place. A cordon remains in place at the scene.

Local politicians have told the BBC that the vehicle was hijacked in Derry some time before the explosion.


R: 2 / I: 1 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Artists stage rare protest against gay conversion therapy in China

Three Chinese men have launched a public campaign sending bright red trucks with slogans denouncing homosexual “conversion therapy” through major cities in China, in a rare public protest against homophobia.

Artist Wu Qiong said the protest was inspired by the 2017 film “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” in which a woman uses billboards to draw attention to her daughter’s unsolved rape and murder.

The three trucks – the brainchild of Mr Wu, gay policeman Lin He and art curator Zheng Hongbin – are protesting “treatment” clinics that claim to turn people straight.


R: 1 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Wikiwarfare: How Wikipedia's Platform And Inherent Bias Makes It A Perfect Tool For Propagandists

Wikipedia, the "online encyclopedia" is, despite all the jokes about how flawed and biased it is due to design, is still one of the first stops for information seekers on the world wide web. The issues, however, have not lessened over the years and with more and more focus on how delusion and disinformation spread online, Wikipedia certainly deserves a closer look.


R: 1 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Eels in Thames 'left hyperactive due to high levels of cocaine in water'

Eels in the Thames are becoming hyperactive because of the high levels of cocaine in the city’s waste water, scientists say.

New research by a team at King's College London found that Londoners are using the class A drug consistently throughout the week, with fears that it is hurting the river’s wildlife.

"Concentrations of cocaine and benzoylecgonine remained high in wastewater across the week with only a minor increase over the weekend, which is not consistent with other cities, “ the reseachers said in a paper.


R: 11 / I: 2 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Is Nic Pizzolatto's True Detective "Satanic Panic" Propaganda?

I watched the first series of True Detective back in 2013 and remembered noticing the symbol. Though it came to the forefront after "Pizzagate" became a household name, information about the multiple symbols used by pedophiles to identify themselves secretly have been available online at least since the early 2000's when I started seriously researching institutional pedophilia.


R: 4 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Prisoner found killing rats in 'dirty and vermin-infested' Bedford prison, report finds

>Inspectors find inmates smoking drugs as officers' control 'tenuous'

An inmate was found killing rats in his own cell at a “dirty and vermin-infested prison” during an inspection visit, it has emerged.

HM Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIP) found vermin, rats, pigeons and cockroaches “everywhere” at HMP Bedford, which has been in special measures since last May.

“One segregated prisoner caught and killed a number of rats in his cell during the inspection,” a report read.


R: 5 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Thousands of Australian Animals Die in Unprecedented Heatwave

In northern Australia, at least 23,000 spectacled flying foxes (Pteropus conspicillatus), a type of fruit-eating bat, died over two days last November as the country experienced record-breaking temperatures of more than 42 °C (107 °F), the BBC reports. That body count, tallied by wildlife volunteers in the weeks after the heatwave, amounts to about a third of the 75,000 spectacled flying foxes in Australia, and it may be an underestimate, Western Sydney University ecologist Justin Welbergen tells the publication.

“It was totally depressing,” rescuer David White tells the BBC. About 10,000 black flying foxes (Pteropus alecto) also died during the same two days of extreme heat.


R: 71 / I: 19 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

‘McJesus’ sculpture sparks outrage among Israel’s Christians

An art exhibit in Israel featuring a crucified Ronald McDonald has sparked protests by the country’s Arab Christian minority.

Hundreds of Christians calling for the removal of the sculpture, entitled “McJesus,” demonstrated at the museum in the northern city of Haifa last week. Israeli police say rioters hurled a firebomb at the museum and threw stones that wounded three police officers. Authorities dispersed the crowds with tear gas and stun grenades.


R: 0 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Turn off street lights at night to help pollinating insects, scientists say

>Local authorities switching off lights to save money may have a positive knock-on effect for ecosystems

With streetlights throwing the nocturnal wildlife into disarray, scientists say turning them off late at night could stop this pervasive pollution from harming UK wildlife.

Moths pollinating plants, bats hunting prey and spiders that emerge under cover of darkness are all suffering under the glare or artificial lights.


R: 0 / I: 0 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

Zimbabwe court says internet shutdown illegal as more civilians detained

Zimbabwe’s government exceeded its mandate in ordering an internet blackout during civilian protests last week, a court ruled on Monday, as authorities pressed on with rounding up opposition figures blamed for the unrest.

In his interim ruling, High Court Judge Owen Tagu told mobile operators to immediately and unconditionally resume full services. The biggest, Econet Wireless, compiled with the order late on Monday, it said in a message to subscribers.

The sporadic blackout began on Tuesday following the start of protests against a rise in fuel prices that turned violent.


R: 81 / I: 51 / P: 1 [R] [G] [-]

'Fox & Friends' accidentally shows graphic saying Ruth Bader Ginsburg is dead

The hosts of “Fox & Friends” on Monday apologized for showing a graphic saying Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is dead, blaming a control room error.

The graphic, similar to those marking the deaths of other famous figures, briefly showed a photo of Ginsburg and the dates “1933-2019.”

“We need to apologize … A technical error in the control room triggered a graphic of RBG with a date on it,” co-host Steve Doocy said later in the program. “We don’t want to make it seem anything other than that was a mistake. That was an accident.”

“We apologize, big mistake,” co-host Ainsley Earhardt added.

more here:


R: 41 / I: 2 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Children risk falling behind by age four because nursery teachers are poorly educated

Children risk falling behind by the age of four because nursery teachers are poorly educated, a new report suggests.

A quarter of early years practitioners - which includes child-minders as well as nursery teachers and assistants - have no qualifications beyond GCSEs, according to the Education Policy Institute (EPI).

Meanwhile A-levels are their highest qualification for just over a third (36 per cent) of those working with toddlers, the report found.


R: 36 / I: 4 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

All children to learn CPR and basic first aid in school

>Teaching basic first aid in schools will be compulsory by 2020 but schools will be supported if they want to start earlier.

Plans to teach basic first aid in schools have been welcomed by the British Heart Foundation.

The charity calls the move a "decisive moment in the battle to improve cardiac arrest survival rates".

There are 30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in the UK every year and fewer than 10% of these people survive.


R: 2 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Windows 10 October 2018 Update is at last being pushed automatically

The ill-fated Windows 10 October 2018 Update has hitherto been offered only to those Windows users who manually sought it, either by using the dedicated upgrade and media creation tools or by manually checking for the update in Windows Update. Three months after its initial release, Microsoft has at last started pushing it to Windows users automatically.

The update was originally withdrawn because of a data loss bug. A month after the initial release, the bug was fixed and the fixed update was made available. Even this release was limited, with a number of blocks in place due to known incompatibilities. As described above, it was then only offered to those taking certain manual steps to update their machines. One month ago, these blocks were largely removed.

Even with automatic deployment and installation now enabled, the beleaguered update is still rolling out in phases. Initially, it will be offered to spaces where Microsoft is most confident that the update will be trouble-free—machines with configurations already known and tested. As the tap is slowly opened more and the update is made available to a wider range of hardware, the company will use operating system telemetry to detect any lingering incompatibilities with device drivers or unusual software.

more here:


R: 7 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Human family tree gains new member as scientists confirm 'missing link'

A new ‘missing link’ between our ape-like ancestors and early humans has been identified, showing that we were still swinging from the trees less than two million years ago.

The first fossils of Australopithecus sediba were discovered in Malapa, South Africa, ten years ago, but experts were unsure if they were unique or just examples of already known species.


R: 1 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Egypt sentences TV host to jail over gay interview

An Egyptian court on Sunday sentenced a television host to one year in prison for interviewing a gay man last year, a judicial source said.

Mohamed al-Gheiti, who has expressed his stance against homosexuality on several occasions, was accused of promoting homosexuality and contempt of religion.

The misdemeanours court in Giza also fined him 3,000 Egyptian pounds ($147) and ordered he be put under surveillance for one year after serving his sentence, said Samir Sabri, the lawyer who brought the case against him.

The verdict can be appealed, and it can be suspended if Gheiti pays bail of 1,000 pounds pending the outcome of the appeal, said Sabri.

In August 2018, Gheiti hosted a gay man on his talk show on the private LTC TV station and discussed homosexuality on air.

During the interview, the gay man, whose face was blurred to hide his identity, said he was a sex worker and openly talked about his relationship with another man.

After the interview was aired, the Supreme Council for Media Regulation, Egypt's top media body, suspended the channel for two weeks for "professional violations".

In a statement at the time, the council said the LTC TV had violated its decision "banning the appearance of homosexuals or promotion of their slogans".


R: 0 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

At Bolsonaro son's request, Brazil top court suspends probe of his ex-driver

Brazil’s supreme court on Thursday ordered Rio de Janeiro state prosecutors to temporarily suspend a probe into suspicious payments made by the former driver of President Jair Bolsonaro’s son, whose lawyers requested the injunction.

According to a copy of the ruling by Supreme Court Justice Luiz Fux seen by Reuters, Flavio Bolsonaro’s lawyers argued that, as a senator-elect, he now enjoys certain legal protections, including that any case involving him should only be decided by the top court.


R: 0 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Total lunar eclipse 2019: Super blood wolf moon appears over the UK

Skygazers in parts of the UK lucky enough to be under clear skies have been treated to the astronomical spectacle of a "super blood wolf moon".

The rare phenomenon, caused in part by a lunar eclipse, makes the surface of the moon appear a reddish hue while seeming brighter and closer to earth than normal.

Catching a glimpse of the curiously-titled event will be down to luck for those wrapping up and heading out early, as many parts of the country were covered by cloud on Monday morning.


R: 8 / I: 6 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Riot Games finds two new organising partners for League of Legends Japan League

PlayBrain, a marketing agency and events production company, will take the lead in creative direction and operation of the events throughout the year. Mike Sheetal, CEO of PlayBrain said: “We are excited to continue to grow LJL as a leading esports event in Japan. With the current opportunities for growth in Japanese esports, we feel uniquely positioned to connect the Japanese esports community with the rest of the world, and turn Japanese competitions into world class events. Our partnership with Riot Games and Yoshimoto to run LJL is a key step towards this mission.”

Yoshimoto, famous for being the talent agency for legendary comedy duo Downtown and producing the show Gaki no Tsukai, will be responsible for bringing the LJL to a new location: the Mugen Hall in Shibuya. They will also help in promoting the event as well as managing talent for the league.

more here:


R: 0 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Taking universal out of university: Why foreign student fees challenge France’s education model

France’s decision to hike tuition fees for international students more than tenfold has triggered a standoff with universities and revived a debate about the role of state-funded higher education and its responsibility to the French-speaking world.

When Abdalah Faye looked beyond his native Senegal for a place to pursue his university studies, there was only ever one destination on his mind: France, the former colonial power and traditional destination for expatriate students from the West African country.

“France and Senegal share a common language, a common history, our education system is copied on the French, we value French diplomas more than our own, and France is home to many of my fellow countrymen,” said the 27-year-old politics student, listing the reasons that brought him to France.

And then there’s the money issue. Higher education in France has long been much cheaper than in other Western countries – in fact almost free, for foreigners and French nationals alike.


R: 17 / I: 2 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Slack has a new logo because the last one was 'simply awful'

Office messaging app Slack is changing its logo because it says the current one "pained" the company and was "simply awful."

It will no longer use the colorful hashtag that it used when it launched in 2013 and has instead designed a four-color logo using lozenge and speech bubble shapes.

While the company says it liked elements of its original logo, its 11 colors made it very easy to get wrong, the firm said in a blog post Wednesday.

"If placed on any color other than white, or at the wrong angle (instead of the precisely prescribed 18-degree rotation), or with the colors tweaked wrong, it looked terrible. It pained us … Simply awful," the post, authored by Slack Team, stated.

more here:


R: 0 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Protests in Pakistan after police kills family in ‘encounter’, PM Khan promises ‘swift action’

>According to CTD, those killed were "terrorists" belonging to terror outfit Daesh. Also present in the car were the couple's three other children. While the minor son sustained a bullet injury, the two daughters are reported to be safe.

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan Sunday promised “swift” action after a couple and their teenage daughter were killed in an alleged encounter between Punjab Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) and suspected “terrorists” near Sahiwal.


R: 8 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Indian villagers hurl firebombs at elephant and calf ‘for damaging their crops’

>Deforestation has left elephants’ habitats smaller and more fractured

A mob of people in an Indian village have brutally attacked an elephant and her calf, hurling firebombs at the pair after they wandered onto farmland.

Photographs show the two elephants crossing a road fleeing a group of men who are launching flaming missiles at them.

The incident, in the village of Bishnupur – a remote settlement in West Bengal – appears to be part of an increasingly common phenomenon in the country where elephants were previously been regarded as a cultural icon.


R: 4 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Nando’s, Domino’s Pizza and McDonald’s among fast food giants forcing misery and pain on billions

>World’s nine biggest chains – including KFC, Burger King, Pizza Hut, Starbucks and Subway – rated ‘poor’ or ‘failing’ on welfare of birds

KFC, McDonald’s, Nando’s and Domino’s Pizza are subjecting billions of chickens to lives of misery that end in a painful death, according to what is thought to be the first global investigation of its type.

The world’s nine biggest chains – also including Burger King, Pizza Hut, Starbucks and Subway – have, following the investigation, been rated “poor” or “failing” on chicken welfare, and accused of putting birds through “chronic pain” in “brutal” industrial-scale systems hidden from the consumer.


R: 1 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Microsoft recommends switching to iPhone or Android as it prepares to kill off Windows phones

Microsoft says anyone who still uses its Windows 10 mobile platform — once called Windows Phone — should switch over to an iPhone or an Android phone. A change to the Windows 10 Mobile support page was first spotted by Thurrott, a site that covers Microsoft.

Microsoft said that on December 10, 2019 it will stop sending "new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free assisted support options, or technical content updates from Microsoft for free." In other words, there aren't going to be any more updates, and only a few phone models will even be supported until that final date.

"With the Windows 10 Mobile OS end of support, we recommend that customers move to a supported Android or iOS device," Microsoft said. "Microsoft's mission statement to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more, compels us to support our Mobile apps on those platforms and devices."

more here:


R: 8 / I: 0 / P: 2 [R] [G] [-]

Ocasio-Cortez says Dems should embrace high marginal tax rate on rich

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) says it’s time for Democrats to embrace a 70 percent marginal tax rate on income above $10 million in a “full-throated manner.”

The freshman lawmaker says “it’s not surprising” that nearly 60 percent of respondents in a new Hill.TV poll support the idea that some of her Democratic colleagues in Congress shy away from.

“This is a policy that is already popular and it's time that we embrace working Americans and it's time that the Democratic Party fights in a full-throated manner for the working class in the United States and to not support a marginal tax rate is to really just allow runaway wealth and inequality to persist,” she told Hill.TV.


R: 4 / I: 0 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Google Pixel 4 May Be Completely Notchless, Patents Show

It seems that Google may be stepping up its Pixel design game and ditching that giant ugly notch. A new patent filed with the World Intellectual Property Organization shows a clean display devoid of notches, holes, foreheads or chins.

It’s actually the second patent that describes a notchless, almost bezelless Pixel. Phone site 91mobiles reported on that one yesterday. That one also shows two speakers, one one the top and another on the bottom, which would offer stereo sound while playing movies and games.

more here:


R: 48 / I: 3 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Future of coffee in doubt as 60 per cent of plants now at risk of extinction

Coffee drinking is in danger after a new study found that 60 per cent of plants are now at risk of extinction, including the variety which produces most of the world’s beans.

Researchers at the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, have found that 75 of the world's 124 wild coffee species are under threat from the loss of forests, climate change and the worsening problem of fungal disease and pests.


R: 6 / I: 0 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Student jailed for killing doctor on zebra crossing after failing to defrost windscreen

>Dr Jasjot Singhota's death 'could have been avoided entirely,' says detective who led investigation

A student who killed a doctor on a zebra crossing after failing to defrost his windscreen has been jailed.

Alexander Fitzgerald, 26, drove into 30-year-old Jasjot Singhota after failing to see her on the crossing in Tulse Hill, southeast London.

The uninsured driver was behind the wheel of a Ford Fiesta with frost on the windscreen when the accident happened on 25 January, 2017. He stopped at the scene.


R: 2 / I: 0 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Wikipedia blocked in Venezuela as internet controls tighten

>The NetBlocks internet observatory has collected technical evidence of the blocking all editions of Wikipedia in Venezuela as of 12 January 2019. The restrictions are implemented by the largest telecommunications provider CANTV.

The study comprising 60,000 metrics has also identified a major network disruption affecting telecommunications infrastructure, coinciding with the other restrictions, that will have impacted Venezuelans’ ability to communicate and access information during the previous 24 hours.


R: 12 / I: 2 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Theresa May wins confidence vote but is snubbed by Jeremy Corbyn over cross-party Brexit talks

>Theresa May’s hopes of reaching a cross-party solution to the Brexit paralysis were dealt a serious blow before they even began on Wednesday night as she was snubbed by Jeremy Corbyn.


R: 2 / I: 0 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

The magnetic north pole is moving, causing navigation issues

>U.S. military requests update to World Magnetic Model to help navigation

Rapid shifts in the Earth's north magnetic pole are forcing researchers to make an unprecedented early update to a model that helps navigation by ships, planes and submarines in the Arctic, scientists said.

Compass needles point toward the north magnetic pole — a point which has crept unpredictably from the coast of northern Canada a century ago, to the middle of the Arctic Ocean, moving toward Russia.


R: 25 / I: 2 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

UK headed for Brexit delay and second referendum - Farage

Brexit campaigner Nigel Farage said on Wednesday he thought Britain was heading for a delay to its scheduled March 29 exit from the European Union and probably would hold a fresh referendum on the country’s membership of the EU.

Prime Minister Theresa May suffered a resounding defeat on her Brexit plan in parliament on Tuesday.

“I think and I fear that we are headed on a path towards delay and probably, yes, a second vote,” Farage, who pushed for the Brexit referendum of 2016 as leader of the UK Independence Party, told Sky News television.


R: 6 / I: 0 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

DNA pioneer James Watson stripped of honours after 'reckless' race remarks

>The laboratory Dr Watson once headed says his views on intelligence and race are "reprehensible" and "unsupported by science".

Nobel Prize-winning DNA scientist James Watson has been stripped of several honorary titles by the laboratory he once headed over his views about intelligence and race.

The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory said it was acting in response to remarks he made in a television documentary which aired earlier this month.


R: 7 / I: 1 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Airline safety ‘eroding’ as shutdown drags on

>Unpaid air traffic controllers, TSA agents put pressure on the White House to re-open government

Virtually every segment of the aviation industry — from airlines to airports — is ramping up pressure on lawmakers and the White House to reopen the government, suggesting that a prolonged shutdown could seriously harm passengers and business.

Air traffic controllers and other aviation industry workers reinforced the point with a rally outside the Capitol on Thursday, saying safety suffers when air traffic controllers, baggage screeners and Federal Aviation Administration technicians and inspectors are either furloughed or forced to work without pay as the shutdown enters its third week.


R: 36 / I: 1 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Temperatures plunge to -23C in Greece as Athens experiences rare snowfall

ATHENS EXPERIENCED A rare snowfall today, two days after Greek officials said three people had died following stormy weather and freezing temperatures across the country.

Temperatures reached minus 23 degrees Celsius in the north of the country, and authorites confirmed that schools will remain closed on Wednesday, the town hall of northeastern Kozani told the ANA news agency.

The snowfall in Athens prompted authorities to close schools and courthouses, while many public offices and banks provided minimal services.


R: 18 / I: 0 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

‘Stealth disease’ written off as old age may be behind thousands of cancers and joint problems

>Genetic disorder dubbed ‘Celtic curse’ afflicts one in five men who carry mutation with liver disease or joint issues

A “stealth disease” which causes iron to build up to toxic levels may be responsible for thousands of cancers and disabling joint problems written off as part of ageing, a British study has found.

Hereditary haemochromatosis is one of the most common genetic disorders among people of European descent but it had previously only been thought to harm around 1 per cent of people carrying the mutation.


R: 18 / I: 2 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Polygamy is happening in Canada's Muslim community, but convictions are rare

>The Fifth Estate spoke with several women affected by polygamous marriage

As some women in Canada's Muslim community are speaking out against polygamous marriages in their community, a CBC reporter says charges and convictions related to the practice are "extremely rare" in Canada.

"[The] law banning polygamy has been on the books for about 127 years," said the CBC's Habiba Nosheen, who has been investigating the issue for The Fifth Estate.


R: 1 / I: 1 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

Facebook is secretly building LOL, a cringey teen meme hub

How do you do, fellow kids? After Facebook Watch, Lasso, and IGTV failed to become hits with teens, the company has been quietly developing another youthful video product. Multiple sources confirm that Facebook has spent months building LOL, a special feed of funny videos and GIF-like clips. It’s divided into categories like “For You”, “Animals”, “Fails”, “Pranks” and more with content pulled from News Feed posts by top meme Pages on Facebook. LOL is currently in private beta with around 100 high school students who signed non-disclosure agreements with parental consent to do focus groups and one-on-one testing with Facebook staff.

In response to TechCrunch’s questioning, Facebook confirmed it is privately testing LOL as a home for funny meme content with a very small number of US users. While those testers experience LOL as a replacement for their Watch tab, Facebook says there’s no plans to roll out LOL in Watch and the team is still finalizing whether it will become a separate feature in one of Facebook’s main app or a standalone app. Facebook declined to give a formal statement but told us the details we had were accurate.

more here:


R: 4 / I: 1 / P: 3 [R] [G] [-]

New Fortnite Vulnerabilities Put 80M Player Accounts At Risk

With around 80 million players worldwide, Fortnite is the undisputed champion of global online gaming. Epic Games, developers of Fortnite, cannot lay claim to a similar title when it comes to security it would seem. Security researchers at Check Point have discovered vulnerabilities that would let hackers win their own criminal Battle Royale against Fortnite players. The security flaws meant attackers would be able to take over player accounts and gain access to their V-bucks game currency using the player's payment details, as well as in-game contacts and the ability to record in-game conversations and eavesdrop on conversations taking place at the player's home.

Check Point's security researchers found that just three flaws were enough to put the accounts of 80 million players at risk of takeover, without the players realizing that they had been compromised until their V-bucks were stolen. Unlike other scams that have targeted Fortnite players, and which required a successful deception to lure them to a fake website where logion credentials could be scraped, the new vulnerabilities would enable the exploit to happen in-game and with minimal player interaction.

Indeed, the attack methodology was surprisingly straightforward according to the researchers who found that a single click on a malicious link was enough to capture the player Fortnite authentication token. The player would not be required to enter login credentials and the link could be sent as a Fortnite chat message so as not to arouse suspicion. These messages could be created so as to appear to be coming from Epic Games and offering free V-bucks or game credits.

more here:


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The CEO behind 'Pokémon Go' says the company is cash-flow positive as it becomes worth almost $4B

Niantic, the developer of "Pokémon Go" and the forthcoming "Harry Potter: Wizards Unite," says that it's now valued at "almost $4 billion," following a $245 million funding round led by IVP, with participation from strategic investors Samsung and Axiomatic Gaming.

John Hanke, the CEO of Niantic, tells Business Insider that the company didn't need the money, strictly speaking: "Pokémon Go," revitalized by a plethora of fan-requested features, has brought in over $2 billion of revenues since its 2016 launch, says Hanke. Furthermore, he says, Niantic is cash-flow positive — which is different from profitable — and still has lots of cash in the bank from previous investment rounds.

Still, Hanke says, the time was right, as he foresees a crunch coming, where it'll be harder for companies like Niantic to raise investment capital amid a possible economic downturn. He's not necessarily against Niantic getting acquired, he says, and indeed, Niantic itself spun out of Google. Still, it's hard to guess how much control a would-be buyer would exert, and staying independent is the best way to ensure that Niantic gets to do what it wants to do.

more here:


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Netflix says it's more worried about competition from video games than other streaming services

As more and more movie streaming services crop up, Netflix says it's not concerned with comparing itself to the competition. Instead, Netflix is more worried about keeping members watching instead of choosing another type of entertainment entirely — like video games.

In its Q4 earnings report out Thursday, Netflix said it accounts for roughly 10% of all television screen time, with viewers streaming 100 million hours of content per day. By the close of 2018, the company had 139 million subscribers and had raised revenue by 35%, but still fell short of their earnings expectations for Q4. And in an increasingly diverse entertainment landscape, Netflix is now facing stiff competition from the likes of "Fortnite."

"We earn consumer screen time, both mobile and television, away from a very broad set of competitors," the quarterly earnings statement read. "We compete with (and lose to) 'Fortnite' more than HBO."

more here:


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Gillette Faces Widespread Mockery, Backlash for Woke Man-Scolding Ad

Shaving product manufacturer Gillette received an overwhelmingly negative response to its latest advertisement campaign, which takes a stand against “toxic masculinity.”

The advertisement, which received over 330,000 dislikes on YouTube against just 75,000 likes, asked viewers, “Is this the best a man can get?” in a twist on the company’s classic tagline, “The best a man can get,” and took on a number of issues, including sexual harassment and bullying, but also masculinity.

At the start of the video, “toxic masculinity” is read out as one of the main negative issues in society, along with “bullying,” and “sexual harassment.”

In another part of the video, a row of fathers declaring “boys will be boys” at two boys fighting are shown to be the bad guys, before one father intervenes and says, “That’s not how we treat each other, okay?”

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Microsoft wants to make Cortana available through Google Assistant

Cortana might not be the most popular voice assistant around, but Satya Nadella doesn’t have a problem with that. Microsoft’s CEO told media this week that the company’s strategy isn’t to expand its assistant’s reach at the expense of rivals like Google Assistant, Apple’s Siri, or Amazon’s Alexa, but rather to work with competitors to incorporate Cortana in existing devices.

Cortana needs to be that skill for anybody who’s a Microsoft 365 subscriber,” he told the Verge. “You should be able to use it on Google Assistant, you should be able to use it on Alexa, just like how you use our apps on Android and iOS, so that’s at least how we want to think about where it’ll go.”

Nadella’s comments follow Microsoft’s recent decision to decouple search and Cortana in the Windows 10 taskbar. And they come after Microsoft CTO Kevin Scott said people shouldn’t expect to see a native Microsoft smart speaker anytime soon, in the vein of Apple’s HomePod or Samsung’s Galaxy Home.

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Oxfam marked by ‘racism, colonial behaviour and bullying behaviours’, report into sexual

>'The Commission has heard multiple staff raise concerns of elitism… racism and colonial behaviour… sexism, rigid hierarchies and patriarchy'

The work environment at Oxfam is marked by "racism, colonial behaviour and bullying behaviours", according to a new report.

The interim report produced by the independent commission, set up by Oxfam International in the wake of the Haiti scandal in 2018 to assess the company's culture, found it has a "toxic work environment".


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T-Mobile CEO’s first stop after cutting Sprint deal? Trump’s DC hotel, report says

The first stop T-Mobile executives made after announcing a deal last April to buy Sprint was President Donald Trump’s Washington D.C. hotel, according to a Washington Post report published Wednesday.

Nine T-Mobile executives, including CEO John Legere, appeared on what the Post called a daily “VIP Arrivals” list the hotel gives its staff. Repeat visits have followed, it said, as T-Mobile seeks federal approval for its $26 billion deal with Sprint.

Just last week, Legere was spotted in the hotel’s lobby and talked with a Post reporter.

“It’s become a place I feel very comfortable,” Legere said, according to the Post. The Post said Legere had cited the hotel’s location near federal offices that house some who are reviewing the deal.

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Gillette advert prompts furious conservatives to throw away razors in protest at effort to tackle

>'You paid for that razor. You now have to put your hand in the toilet to throw that out'

First they burned their Nike trainers. Now conservatives are taking their rage out on razors.

Gillette has been bombarded with footage of angry men throwing away their shavers in response to an advert warning about toxic masculinity.

The campaign, which references the #MeToo movement, workplace sexism and male violence, has been praised by many for its message.

But it has also triggered indignation among some men, who have accused Gillette of “virtue-signalling” and threatened to boycott its products.


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French court axes market approval of Bayer's Roundup weed-killer

A French court on Tuesday struck down market approval for the controversial weed-killer Roundup, saying regulators had failed to take safety concerns into account when clearing the widely used herbicide.

Roundup, owned by Germany's Bayer after its purchase of US agro-giant Monsanto last year, contains glyphosate which environmentalists and other critics have long believed causes cancer.

The European Union renewed its authorisation of glyphosate for five years in November 2017, but President Emmanuel Macron has vowed to outlaw its use in France by 2021.

An administrative tribunal in Lyon, southeast France, said Tuesday that the national ANSES food and environmental safety agency should have given more weight to potential safety risks when authorising the use of Roundup Pro 360 in March 2017.


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‘THE SMOKING GUN’: Google Manipulated YouTube Search Results for Abortion, Maxine Waters, David Hogg

In sworn testimony, Google CEO Sundar Pichai told Congress last month that his company does not “manually intervene” on any particular search result. Yet an internal discussion thread leaked to Breitbart News reveals Google regularly intervenes in search results on its YouTube video platform – including a recent intervention that pushed pro-life videos out of the top ten search results for “abortion.”

The term “abortion” was added to a “blacklist” file for “controversial YouTube queries,” which contains a list of search terms that the company considers sensitive. According to the leak, these include some of these search terms related to: abortion, abortions, the Irish abortion referendum, Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters, and anti-gun activist David Hogg.

The existence of the blacklist was revealed in an internal Google discussion thread leaked to Breitbart News by a source inside the company who wishes to remain anonymous. A partial list of blacklisted terms was also leaked to Breitbart by another Google source.

In the leaked discussion thread, a Google site reliability engineer hinted at the existence of more search blacklists, according to the source.

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Facebook's data collecting practices have once again been called into question, after a new report revealed that it "routinely tracked" people who do not use the app.

Privacy International analysed 34 apps on the Android mobile operating system with user bases of between 10 and 500 million.

The charity began the study after the scandal surrounding the now defunct London based political consultancy Cambridge Analytica, which was accused of improperly obtaining personal information on behalf of political clients and using it to influence the outcome of the US 2016 presidential election or the UK Brexit referendum.


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US troops in Syria could be replaced by private contractors, Blackwater founder Erik Prince says

>Former navy Seal says contractors could protect US allies

Private military contractors could replace US troops withdrawing from Syria, Blackwater founder Erik Prince has suggested.

The former security firm chief said contractors could protect US allies and counter Iranian influence after the US leaves the country.

“The United States doesn’t have a long-term strategic obligation to stay in Syria. But, I also think it’s not a good idea to abandon our allies,” he told Fox Business.

The allies to which Mr Prince refers are the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a mostly Kurdish militia that has been a key partner of the US in the fight against Isis in Syria.


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Russia says US ignored offer to inspect controversial weapon

Russia's foreign minister says that the U.S. has ignored Moscow's proposal to inspect a Russian missile that Washington says has violated a nuclear arms treaty.

Sergey Lavrov said Wednesday that Russia offered during talks in Geneva earlier this week that U.S. experts see the missile. He said the U.S. negotiators stonewalled the offer, repeating Washington's demand that Russia destroys the weapon it claimed violated the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.


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Brazil's Bolsonaro signs decree easing gun laws

>Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Tuesday signed a decree that will temporarily make it easier for Brazilians to buy guns, despite fears the move could aggravate already staggering violent crime.

The executive order, signed in a live television broadcast following a cabinet meeting, allows "good citizens" to more easily own firearms, said Bolsonaro, a former army captain.

"To guarantee the legitimate right of defense, as president I am using this weapon," he said, indicating the pen he then used to sign the decree.

The far-right president ran on a law-and-order platform. His message resonated with voters in Brazil, which in 2017 had a record 64,000 murders, more than any other country.

Tuesday's decree makes it much easier for adults with no criminal record to buy guns and keep them at home.


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Drinking your own urine? There’s a Facebook group for that

>Urine-therapy enthusiasts say drinking pee is a panacea, not a foul way to start the day

One benefit of being part of a social network with more than a billion members: there will be thousands of people who share that “one in a million” interest. Facebook is a haven for those with rare diseases or niche interests, one capable of supporting two separate groups of more than 5,000 proponents of “urine therapy”.


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Senate rejects effort to block Trump on Russia sanctions

The Senate on Wednesday narrowly rejected a Democratic-led effort to block President Trump from lifting sanctions against three Russian businesses.

Senators voted 57-42 to end debate on the resolution, falling short of the 60 votes needed. If all Democrats supported the measure, they needed to win over 13 GOP senators.


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Trump claims he ‘never meant’ Mexico would directly pay for border wall despite repeatedly saying it

>Mr Trump has repeatedly promised that Mexico would pay for the wall

Donald Trump has claimed that, despite his repeated promises that Mexico would pay for a wall on US southern border, he “obviously never meant Mexico would write a cheque”.

Mr Trump’s website for his 2016 campaign had previously stated that the border country would make a “one-time payment of “$5-$10 billion”.

Instead, the president most recently claimed that Mexico would pay for the wall through changes to trade policy his administration has negotiated to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement. That new deal, the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), has not been approved by congress yet but the president said on Thursday that it ”probably will be”.


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Billions of Puerto Rico's debt might be invalid, federal oversight board says

>“This really is a milestone… It is perhaps the board’s best move in its two years of existence," said a Puerto Rican economist.

The federal control board (FOMBPR) that oversees Puerto Rico’s finances is asking a court to invalidate more than $6 billion worth of debt issued by the U.S. territory, a move that would hit bondholders.

The board said late Monday the debt includes all general obligation bonds that were issued in 2012 and 2014 in “clear violation” of debt limits established by Puerto Rico’s Constitution. Instead of adhering to a balanced budget requirement, they were used to finance deficit spending.


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Nintendo’s New York Store Held a Fitness Boxing Event Where People Literally Punched the Air

If you were in New York today and saw a bunch of people punching at each other inside the Nintendo NY store, you’ll be pleased to know that they weren’t fighting a copy of Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe. In fact, everyone was working out to Imagineer’s Fitness Boxing for the event being held at the store.

The Fitness Boxing event took place with two influencers showing off their well-timed moves. One of these influencers was Felia, one half of “The Nintendo Power Couple“. Felia and Danny are Nintendo brand ambassadors and has 7.4k subscribers on YouTube. The two create unboxing videos, reviews, and more.

The event was led by Niki Klasnic, an Instagram fitness influencer also known as sugarysixpack. She has a following of over 340k and even has her own app focused on fitness. Also in attendance was Refinery29’s Natalie M. as well as whoever from the general public wanted to take part. Hopefully, everyone chose to wear those Joy-Con wriststraps.

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Google pushes Android devs to move to 64-bit as it timetables new app requirements

While 64-bit software is pretty much the norm on the desktop, the same cannot – yet – be said on mobile platforms. There is a steady movement away from 32-bit apps, and Google wants to accelerate things.

The company is encouraging Android developers to concentrate on 64-bit versions of their apps as it sets out its timetable for the end of 32-bit software.

Emphasizing the fact that 64-bit processors deliver a faster experience for users, Google stresses the importance of creating 64-bit versions of apps. Starting later this year, Google will start to require developers to provide 64-bit versions of their software for inclusion in the Play Store, with further requirements coming in 2021.

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Remember the Motorola Razr? A new report says it's coming back as a foldable $1,500 phone

Remember the Motorola Razr from the early 2000s? Motorola's super-thin, metallic flip phone that was the "it" phone before the iPhone and Galaxy started a smartphone revolution.

Well, if a new report is to be believed, it will soon be making a comeback.

Lenovo, which owns the Motorola brand after buying it from Google in 2014, plans to bring back the Razr as a new phone with a foldable screen.

While additional details on the phone, such as its screen size or if it will have support for 5G, remain unknown, the Journal says that Lenovo is working with Verizon to release the phone, possibly as soon as next month.

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Massive 'Fortnite' security hole allowed hackers to take over accounts, eavesdrop on chats

"Fortnite" players were exposed to hackers who could control their accounts, purchase in-game items through their credit cards, and drop into in-game chats posing as the hacked player, cybersecurity firm Check Point Software Technologies discovered in November.

The company immediately alerted developer Epic Games, which tells Variety it fixed the massive security hole this month.

"We were made aware of the vulnerabilities and they were soon addressed," a spokesperson said. "We thank Check Point for bringing this to our attention. As always, we encourage players to protect their accounts by not re-using passwords and using strong passwords, and not sharing account information with others."

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Unity clarifies ToS changes, welcomes back “unsupported” SpatialOS

Days after a nasty public split with cloud gaming developer Improbable, Unity has reinstated the company's license and updated its own terms of service to offer what it is calling a "commitment to being an open platform."

"When you make a game with Unity, you own the content and you should have the right to put it wherever you want," Unity wrote in a blog post explaining the move. "Our TOS didn’t reflect this principle—something that is not in line with who we are."

The new terms of service allow Unity developers to integrate any third-party service into their projects, no questions asked. As a caveat, though, Unity will now distinguish between "supported" third-party services—those Unity ensures will "always [run] well on the latest version of our software"—and "unsupported" third-party services, which developers use at their own risk.

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Verizon bundles Apple Music into its more expensive unlimited plans

Verizon's expanding its Apple Music perk for some unlimited plan customers.

Starting Thursday, Verizon will include Apple Music in its Beyond Unlimited and Above Unlimited plans. Customers with a Go Unlimited plan can get six months of Apple Music, according to a press release from the carrier on Tuesday.

This isn't a brand-new perk for Verizon subscribers. Previously, customers on these three unlimited plans were offered a six-month trial of Apple Music, after which they'd have to pay $9.99 a month for the music streaming service. Now, customers on Beyond Unlimited and Above Unlimited plans will get Apple Music permanently at no additional cost.

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"Floss" And "Carlton" Emotes Pulled From "Forza Horizon 4" Amid Lawsuit Frenzy

The past few weeks have seen the emergence of a powerful new force in American culture. Two of this country's greatest loves, videogames and lawsuits, have been combined, which has the developers of these games quaking in their boots, afraid to include what used to be innocuous dances lest they be sued by the mothers of 17-year-old Instagrammers.

It started with Fortnite, a game (partially) famous for its emotes, dances including the floss, the Carlton and orange justice/random, that players can use to taunt or celebrate in the game. Others, like Forza Horizon 4, followed suit. Now, though, Fortnite's developer, Epic Games, is being sued in relation to all three of the aforementioned dances. The argument of all three suits (which are all handled by the same law firm) can be summed up by a quote from the suit brought by the mother of the orange justice kid, otherwise known as Orange T-Shirt Kid: "defendants did not credit Orange Shirt Kid nor seek his consent to use, display, reproduce, sell or create a derivative work based upon Orange Shirt Kid's Random dance or likeness in Fortnite."

Hoping not to get sued, Microsoft has pulled both the floss and the Carlton from Forza Horizon 4 in the game's series 5 update.



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DuckDuckGo switches to Apple Maps

DuckDuckGo has turned to Apple Maps for its address-related searches on mobile and desktop. The search engine said it does not send any personally identifiable information to Apple.

"For local searches, where your approximate location information is sent by your browser to us, we discard it immediately after use," the company said in a blog post.

"You are still anonymous when you perform map and address-related searches on DuckDuckGo."

DuckDuckGo did not discuss how working with Apple, which the search engine said will result in a "a new standard of trust online", was better or worse from a privacy perspective than using data from the OpenStreetMap project as it did previously.

The search engine is one of the first to sign up for Apples' MapKit JS framework.

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Kingdom Hearts: VR Experience delayed to January 23

Square Enix has delayed Kindgom Hearts: VR Experience from its previously planned January 18 release date to January 23. This is the second delay for the title, which was originally planned for December 25, 2018.

In related news, Square Enix announced it will debut a special two-minute commercial for Kingdom Hearts III during “Soccer AFC Asia Cup 2019 Japan vs. Uzbekistan TV Asahi 60th Anniversary” on January 17 between 22:00 and 24:30 JST. It will be posted online afterwards.

Kindgom Hearts: VR Experience will be available for PlayStation VR.

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Revisiting The Ramseys: What Really Happened To JonBenet?


A few days ago Jon Benet Ramsey's name popped up in the news cycle. A "confession" had occurred. I'll admit I ignored it. As it turns out, so did the Boulder, Colorado police department.


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U.S., Britain conduct first joint drills in contested South China Sea

The United States and Britain have conducted their first joint naval drills in the disputed South China Sea since China built island bases there, the two navies said on Wednesday, as Washington seeks help from allies to keep pressure on Beijing.

A U.S. Navy guided missile destroyer the USS McCampbell, which is based in Japan, and a Royal Navy frigate, HMS Argyll, which is on a tour of Asia, conducted communication drills and other exercises from Friday to Wednesday “to address common security priorities”, the U.S. Navy said in a press release.


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Google is promoting anti-education message, MPs warn after adverts suggest spelling is not important

Google is promoting an anti-education message as its advertising campaign suggests children do not need to learn how to spell , MPs have warned.

The adverts urge people to "keep spelling it how you say it", referring to the algorithm that predicts what you are trying to spell when typing into Google’s search.

One such advert gives an example of someone typing into a search bar "what to do in rakeavic" and below it says: "Showing results for what to do in Reykjavic".


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YouTube bans dangerous or harmful pranks

YouTube clips that depict dangerous or emotionally distressing “pranks” have been banned from the platform.

The move comes in response to so-called "challenges" that have sometimes resulted in death or injury.

The Google-owned video sharing site said such material had “no place on YouTube”.

However, the firm appears to be failing to enforce its existing rules on harmful content.


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Restoration of voting rights by felons marks shift in Florida

More than 1 million Floridians with felony convictions regained the right to vote on Tuesday, setting in motion a process that carries the potential to reshape elections in the country’s largest and most unpredictable battleground state.

The mass re-enfranchisement of felons who have completed their sentences is the result of Amendment 4, a ballot initiative approved by nearly 65 percent of Florida voters in November that ends a longtime policy requiring felons to petition the state clemency board for their voting rights to be restored.


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Farmer describes moment 100ft wall of water shot from ground as he fixed fence

A farmer has described how his nephew was nearly killed when a wall of water “100ft high” shot up from the ground as he knocked a fence post into the ground, damaging a pipe.

Philip Langton, 57, said the pair had been using a post knocker mounted to a tractor to strengthen gateposts on his land in Holbrook, Derbyshire.

He said the posts only went around 18 inches below the ground and that all they were doing was “knocking them a little bit further”.

But the post hit a water pipe, triggering floods that cascaded down to neighbouring villages and caused severe damage to homes and businesses


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Coins in Trevi Fountain will go to Rome city council rather than Church charity

Throw a coin over your shoulder into Rome's Trevi Fountain, the legend says, and it will bring you good fortune and you will one day return to the Eternal City.

It is an essential tradition for millions of tourists. But few will have suspected their loose change would also spark a bitter row between Rome's secular authorities and the Catholic Church.

Traditionally, the €1.5 million (£1.3 million) of coins scooped out of the stunning Baroque fountain each year are actually destined for the Catholic charity, Caritas, to help the city’s poor and homeless.


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Nairobi hotel: DusitD2 siege over as attackers eliminated

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta has said that a siege by suspected militants in Nairobi is over and all the attackers have been "eliminated".

Gunmen attacked the compound in the Westlands district of Kenya's capital on Tuesday, killing at least 14 people.

Officials originally announced the end of the siege hours after it began, but gunfire and explosions were heard again early on Wednesday.

The Somalia-based militant group al-Shabab said it was behind the attack.

It is not clear how many attackers there were.

The complex houses the DusitD2 hotel as well as offices.


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US troops in Syria could be replaced by private contractors, Blackwater founder Erik Prince says

>Former navy Seal says contractors could protect US allies

Private military contractors could replace US troops withdrawing from Syria, Blackwater founder Erik Prince has suggested.

The former security firm chief said contractors could protect US allies and counter Iranian influence after the US leaves the country.

“The United States doesn’t have a long-term strategic obligation to stay in Syria. But, I also think it’s not a good idea to abandon our allies,” he told Fox Business.

The allies to which Mr Prince refers are the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a mostly Kurdish militia that has been a key partner of the US in the fight against Isis in Syria.


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Woman forcibly stripped in LaSalle County jail sues sheriff; incident captured on video

Nearly five years after LaSalle County authorities paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to settle lawsuits by female inmates who were stripped naked in the local jail, another woman is alleging she was “humiliated, degraded and dehumanized” when deputies forcibly removed her clothes and then left her for 12 hours in a padded cell.

Three female deputies stripped Zandrea Askew and removed her undergarments as she lay sobbing face down on the floor of the cell, according to her attorney, Terry Ekl, who provided jailhouse video of the Jan. 20, 2017, incident to the Tribune.


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Surge in oil and gas companies using injunctions to block protesters at UK sites

>Surge in oil and gas companies using injunctions to block protesters at UK sites

Fracking and fossil-fuel companies are taking out “draconian” injunctions to block protesters at drilling sites linked with earthquakes and other environmental damage.

The legal action is being used to scare off local residents both from protesting at the sites and joining opposition groups online, lawyers told The Independent.


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Cern plans even larger hadron collider for physics search

Cern has published its ideas for a £20bn successor to the Large Hadron Collider, given the working name of Future Circular Collider (FCC).

The Geneva based particle physics research centre is proposing an accelerator that is almost four times longer and ten times more powerful.

The aim is to have the FCC hunting for new sub-atomic particles by 2050.

Critics say that the money could be better spent on other research areas such as combating climate change.

But Cern's Director-General, Prof Fabiola Gianotti described the proposal as "a remarkable accomplishment".


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Hundreds in new U.S.-bound migrant caravan cross into Guatemala

Several hundred Honduran migrants in a new U.S.-bound caravan crossed into Guatemala on Tuesday, as U.S. President Donald Trump seized on news of the advancing group to try to build support for a wall along his country’s border with Mexico.

About 360 Hondurans presented documents to pass legally through the Agua Caliente border crossing separating the two Central American nations. The group included entire families and young men, as well as parents carrying small children.

An additional 350 Hondurans crossed into Guatemalan territory, but were being detained by migration officials checking their documents, according to pro-migrant activists traveling with them.


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Russia rules to hold jailed Ukrainian sailors until April 24: agencies

A court in Moscow ruled on Wednesday that four Ukrainian sailors seized by Russia last year off the coast of Crimea should be kept in pre-trial detention until April 24, Russian news agencies reported.

Russia seized three Ukrainian navy vessels and their combined crew of 24 on Nov. 25 near Russian-annexed Crimea. Moscow accuses them of illegally entering Russian waters, something Kiev denies.


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Kenya's leader says militants who attacked Nairobi hotel complex have been killed

>"It's so sad that such a bright young person is taken away by terrorism," the mother of the American victim told NBC News.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta vowed authorities would "pursue relentlessly" those involved in the funding, planning and execution of Tuesday's attack on a hotel complex in Nairobi.

Kenyatta said in a televised address Wednesday that "multiple security efforts are underway to detect, deter, disrupt and defeat any terrorist operative or group." He added that all four militants who stormed the site had been killed by security forces.


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9 DND employees involved in OC Transpo crash

>Defence staff encouraged to look after themselves, each other

Nine employees with the Department of National Defence were involved in Friday's horrific bus crash on Ottawa's Transitway, the department confirmed Tuesday.

There were four Canadian Armed Forces members and five civilians involved in the collision at Westboro station.

The three people killed in the crash were also public servants.


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Government announces new tax rules for Phoenix overpayments

>Overpaid workers will only pay back 'net' amounts under proposed tax change

The country's biggest civil-service union declared a victory for its members Tuesday as the Trudeau government moved to change a tax rule that has caused headaches for federal employees overpaid by the problem-plagued public service pay system.

The Finance Department announced draft legislation that would see overpaid employees — regardless who they work for — required to repay only the amounts deposited into their bank accounts in a prior tax year.


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Former right-hand man testifies El Chapo bribed ex-Mexican president with $100 million

Former drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman allegedly authorized the bribing of former Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto to the tune of $100 million dollars, his former right-hand man testified Tuesday, according to multiple news outlets.

Alex Cifuentes, described as a close associate of Guzman and key player in the Sinaloa Cartel, which Guzman formerly controlled, reportedly confirmed on the witness stand Tuesday afternoon that Nieto was paid a $100 million bribe by Chapo, though he was not sure when the bribe occurred.


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Attorney General nominee Barr: The public may never see Mueller's report

>Trump's pick to be the country's chief law enforcement officer was questioned about the special counsel investigation at his confirmation hearing.

Comments made Tuesday by William Barr, President Donald Trump's nominee for attorney general, suggest that the report of special prosecutor Robert Mueller's Russian meddling investigation might not become public in the way many have been expecting.

At his confirmation hearing, Barr repeatedly told the Senate Judiciary Committee that he's committed to making as much information public as he can about Mueller's probe. But he also suggested that what is eventually released might not be a redacted version of Mueller's report.


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Canada will grant asylum to Saudi woman fleeing alleged abuse: Trudeau

>'We have accepted the UN's request that we grant her asylum,' prime minister says

Canada will grant asylum to a Saudi woman who fled alleged abuse from her family and has spent nearly a week barricaded in a Bangkok hotel room, says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

The prime minister was asked about whether Canada would accept Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun, 18, as a refugee during a media availability in Regina on Friday.

"The [UN High Commissioner for Refugees] has made a request of Canada that we accept Ms. al-Qunun as a refugee and we have accepted the UN's request that we grant her asylum," he told reporters.


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Belgium ban on kosher and halal slaughter methods comes into effect

A ban on kosher and halal slaughter has come into effect in the Flanders region of Belgium unless the animal is stunned before it is killed.

It comes after legislation prohibiting animal slaughter without pre-stunning was passed in the nation's parliament in July 2017.

The northern region of Flanders is the first in Belgium to implement the ban, with the legislation coming into effect on New Year's Day.

Similar restrictions will be in place in the southern Wallonia region from September.


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Former Venezuela Supreme Court judge flees to U.S., denounces Maduro

Former Venezuelan Supreme Court Justice Christian Zerpa has fled to the United States to protest President Nicolas Maduro’s second term that will begin with his inauguration this week, the onetime Maduro backer told a Miami broadcaster on Sunday.

The latest defection from the crisis-stricken OPEC nation’s government comes amid growing international pressure on Maduro over his new term, which resulted from a broadly boycotted 2018 vote dismissed by countries around the world as a sham.


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China's Moon mission sees first seeds sprout

Seeds taken up to the Moon by China's Chang'e-4 mission have sprouted, says China National Space Administration.

It marks the first time any biological matter has grown on the Moon, and is being seen as a significant step towards long-term space exploration.

The Chang'e 4 is the first mission to land on and explore the Moon's far side, facing away from Earth.

It touched down on 3 January, carrying instruments to analyse the region's geology.


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Pawel Adamowicz, Gdansk mayor, dies after stabbing

The mayor of the Polish city of Gdansk has died in hospital, a day after being stabbed at a charity event.

Pawel Adamowicz, 53, was attacked on stage in front of hundreds of people on Sunday.

He was taken to hospital for stab injuries and underwent five hours of surgery at a local hospital.

A 27-year-old with a criminal record has been arrested over the attack. Police believe he used a media pass to gain access to the stage.

Poland's health minister on Monday confirmed Mr Adamowicz had died.

"We couldn't win," Lukasz Szumowski told local media, referring to the battle to save his life.


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Man who took 2 women hostage at UPS facility is dead

An armed man who entered a UPS processing facility Monday morning and held two women hostage for several hours was shot and killed by police as he left the building with the women, authorities said.

Several officers fired at William Owens, 39, of Sicklerville, New Jersey, the state Attorney General’s Office said in a news release that did not detail the situation or explain why the suspect was shot.

Owens had entered the business at about 8:45 a.m. and fired shots, which did not strike anyone, before taking the women to a room and barricading himself inside with them, authorities said. Officials believe that Owens had a prior relationship with one of the hostages, Gloucester County Prosecutor Charles Fiore said.


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May Warns Parliament Will Kill Brexit if Her Deal Is Voted Down

Theresa May enters one of the most tumultuous weeks of her turbulent premiership as the U.K. Parliament prepares to decide the fate of her Brexit deal, and possibly her tenure as prime minister.

With her agreement facing almost certain defeat in a House of Commons vote on Tuesday, May will make an 11th-hour appeal with a warning that there’s now more chance of members of Parliament blocking Brexit than of Britain leaving the European Union without a deal.


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YouTube is testing video download recommendations in select markets

It's been five years since YouTube started rolling out offline video downloads. At the latest count, users in 154 of the world's 195 countries can download videos for offline playback; some countries require having a YouTube Premium subscription, while others let everyone download videos. Now YouTube looks to be pointing users towards videos they might want to download next, as we see evidence of a new "recommended downloads" feature.

When Malaysian AP reader @JazliAziz opened the downloads section on his YouTube app, he was greeted with a new section called "Recommended downloads." Other video streaming services like Netflix already recommend which shows to download, so YouTube will be playing catch-up here. Personally, I never find YouTube's suggestions to be too accurate (as they get easily misled if I watch a video or two out of the norm), but your mileage may vary.

more here:


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Labour vows to bring down Theresa May within 24 hours and could overturn Brexit completely

Labour is set to try and bring down Theresa May's government within 24 hours of her expected Brexit loss tonight.

Jeremy Corbyn is expected to table a motion of no confidence in the Government if the PM's deal gets defeated, as is predicted.

Labour whips have told MPs to be ready for a vote early on Wednesday, The Telegraph revealed.

It could take place just after Prime Minister's Questions tomorrow, with the results expected minutes later.

more here:


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Samsung says its foldable phone is a ‘breakthrough in technology innovation’

Samsung next month is expected to unveil two new smartphone flagships, including the Galaxy S10 that dominates mobile rumors right now, and the Galaxy F, its first foldable handset. The latter already got a soft launch back in November, but Samsung only really showed the phone’s Infinity Flex screen, as well as the new One UI user interface that will power all Samsung mobile experiences, Galaxy F included. And, according to a new report, Samsung is looking to make the most of the foldable phone experience it’s about to introduce, a form factor not many other handset vendors will have in stores this year.

Samsung is currently testing new experiences on foldable phones The Korea Herald said in a post, revealing that development for the upcoming phone may be done primarily in the States, at the Samsung Design Innovation Center (SDIC).

more here:


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Rockstar Games Hits Back at Real Pinkertons Over ‘Red Dead Redemption 2’ Lawsuit

Rockstar Games and Take-Two Interactive hit back at the real-world Pinkertons last week after receiving a cease and desist letter over use of the Pinkerton agency’s name and badge throughout “Red Dead Redemption 2”.

A complaint launched in response to Pinkerton Consultancy & Investigation – the historical agents-turned-risk management service currently acting as subsidiary to the security firm Securitas AB – maintains that the use of the “Pinkerton” name is protected under “First Amendment principles that protect expressive works.”

“The game’s reference to the historical Pinkerton National Detective Agency and its agents is but one of a myriad of ways that “Red Dead 2″ accurately portrays the historical Nineteenth Century American landscape,” reads the complaint from the game makers.

more here:


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Windows 7 support is ending next year, Microsoft urges Windows 10 upgrades

All good things must come to an end, Microsoft says. It probably has no idea how poignant that is in light of recent Windows news. The company has just started the countdown timer for the end of life of Windows 7, encouraging users to upgrade to Windows 10. But in doing so, not only will users be saying goodbye to what was, until last month, the most used Windows version, they will also be saying hello to the headaches that Windows 10 updates bring.

It has taken more than 6 years and two and a half versions of Windows to finally dethrone Windows 7. Launched in late 2009, the version of the operating systems sits in between two widely considered flop Windows releases, Windows Vista and Windows 8. Its colorful and glassy Aero theme, narrow Start Menu, and iconic startup sound are probably still the things that most people associate Windows with.

more here:


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Google will remove unapproved apps that use call log/SMS permissions in the next few weeks

Keeping your personal data safe and secure is vital to the success of Android. If the platform gets a reputation for revealing sensitive data to other apps then it will make people feel wary about getting an Android phone. This was the whole point of the permissions system and Google has refined it over the years into the granular option we have today. Late last year, Google announced that they would be restricting which applications had access to the call log and SMS permissions. These are integral to the way certain apps work and Google decided not to give the user the choice to deny or allow access.

At the time, the company says they were giving developers 90 days to update their apps or they would get removed from the Play Store for violating the new policy. The change is unique because even applications that are allowed to stay will only have access to this data if they are set as one of Android’s “default apps.” Since this new policy says they will only allow phone and SMS apps to have access to this data, it put a lot of miscellaneous apps on the chopping block. This includes applications such as Cerberus, ACR Call Recorder, and Tasker.

more here:


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Google Fi is adding RCS Chat, the successor to SMS

After integrating Rich Communications Services (RCS) into Android Messages almost two years ago, and talking up the advantages of the SMS successor at last year’s MWC, the company just announced that it has added RCS to its mobile pseudo-network, Google Fi.

In short, RCS has a lot of the features we already enjoy on iMessages, WhatsApp and other data-based messaging services. These include higher-res images and video, indicators to show when a partner is typing, group chatting, read receipts and messaging over Wi-Fi/data.

What RCS doesn’t have is end-to-end encryption like security-minded services like iMessage or Signal have achieved, as The Verge pointed out.

more here:


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Apple developing new iPod touch, 2019 iPhones could switch to USB-C

According to a new report from supply chain blog Macotakara, Apple could be in the process of developing a revised iPod touch. Further, the report says the 2019 iPhone might make the jump to USB-C, just like the 2018 iPad Pros.

The report is rather vague, with Macotakara citing supply chain sources. Details on what changes a new iPod touch might feature are unclear at this point, but it is long overdue for an update. The 6th generation iPod touch was released in 2015 and for $199 with 32GB of storage.

Theoretically, an entry-level iPod touch would be a way for Apple to continue to grow its install base and thus its Services segment. Having more iOS users means there are more users able to pay for iCloud storage, use Apple Music, and use the App Store and iTunes Store. The iPod touch would likely target younger users who aren’t yet ready for a smartphone.

Apple discontinued the iPod nano and iPod shuffle in 2017, meaning the iPod touch is the sole iPod still sold by Apple today.

more here:


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Apple AirPods 2 Will Be The Most Revolutionary Ear Accessories In History

Apple, known for such products as the iPhone X, iPhone XR, iPhone XS Max and its "wireless, effortless, magical" AirPods has allegedly started production its AirPower wireless charging pad. Without too much speculative power, it shouldn't take your brain long to assume that the release of the AirPower will be timed with the release of second generation AirPods.

Recently, while visiting San Francisco and watching all the mouth breathing scooter riders with AirPods in their ears careen into stationary objects while showing a clear lack of spatial awareness, I realized what a revolutionary product the AirPod really is. Not only is it a wireless audio delivery device, but is also comes in white and only white. Will the AirPods 2 come in black or perhaps rose gold? Will they be red, pink blue or brown? Only Jony Ive really knows and chances are he's chugging gallons of antacid in his boxer shorts surrounded by paint samples from Home Depot.

more here:


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Super blood moon UK 2019: When is the lunar eclipse and where to watch it

>A glowing red moon will delight stargazers next week

Stargazers can look forward to a rare lunar phenomenon which will be visible from the UK next week.

A glowing red "super blood moon eclipse" will delight astronomers and enthusiasts for around three hours on January 21.

The first lunar phenomenon of the year will see the moon appear red as light from the Sun is completely blocked out by the earth.

But what exactly is a "super blood moon eclipse" and when and where will you be able to see it?


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Britain's parliament faces biggest decision since World War Two

Britain’s parliament faces its biggest decision since World War Two on Tuesday: whether to back Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit divorce deal, a vote that will influence the country’s prosperity for generations to come.

The future of the United Kingdom’s March 29 exit from the EU is deeply uncertain as parliament is likely to vote down May’s deal, opening up outcomes ranging from a disorderly divorce to reversing Brexit altogether.


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Scientist 'eaten alive by crocodile she was feeding in Indonesia'

>Deasy Tuwo was dragged into the reptile's enclosure after it leapt up an 8ft-high concrete wall to grab her, reports say.

A scientist has been eaten alive by a crocodile which attacked her while she fed it, according to reports.

The woman, named as Deasy Tuwo, is said to have been dragged into the reptile's enclosure after it leapt up an 8ft-high concrete wall to grab her.

The 17ft-long predator - called Merry - was being kept at the CV Yosiki Laboratory on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi.


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Abortion Bill signed into law by President

A Bill that will give women access to abortion for the first time in the history of the State has been signed into law by President Michael D Higgins.

A statement released by Áras an Uachtaráin on Thursday evening said: “Having considered the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Bill 2018, the President has signed the Bill and it has accordingly become law.”

The Bill finished its final stage in the Seanad earlier this month after weeks of sometimes heated debate in both the Dáil and Seanad. It follows a referendum in May on the removal of the Eighth Amendment from the Constitution, which guaranteed the unborn and mother an equal right to life. Some 67 per cent of the electorate voted to repeal the amendment.


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Two women charged with sexually assaulting a transgender woman in bathroom

>Attack continued despite pleas to stop, victim tells police

Two women have been charged with kidnapping and sexual assault following an attack on a transgender woman in a bar toilet, according to reports.

Police in North Carolina said the alleged victim told them she was inside the toilet of a bar in Raleigh, the state capital, when the pair began to verbally abuse her.

They then exposed themselves and touched her, she claimed.

The attack was said to have continued outside the toilet, the Associated Press reported, despite the woman’s pleas and a bartender’s orders for it to end.


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Toddler freezes to death after escaping home at night

A New Hampshire toddler, barefoot and clad only in a nightgown, was found dead early Monday in bitter cold weather just feet from her front door after she managed to get out of her house and couldn't get back in.

Police in the small town of Newport said they received several 911 calls around 7.10am about an unresponsive child who was not breathing. When they arrived at the two-story residence, they pronounced the girl dead. A preliminary investigation found the child, identified by family as Sofia Van Schoick, had left the house on her own and "was not able to regain entry," said authorities.


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>Scientists pick up large number of blasts over a few weeks

Scientists have spotted repeated blasts of radio signals coming from deep in space.

The breakthrough is only the second time scientists have seen such a repeating radio burst. It both deepens the mystery and offers a potential opportunity to finally understand what might be throwing out the burst from a galaxy billions of light years away.

Fast radio bursts have been speculated to be the result of everything from exploding stars to transmissions from aliens. But they have remained entirely mysterious, with little evidence at all of where they might be coming from.


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Google shifted $23 billion to tax haven Bermuda in 2017: filing

Google moved 19.9 billion euros ($22.7 billion) through a Dutch shell company to Bermuda in 2017, as part of an arrangement that allows it to reduce its foreign tax bill, according to documents filed at the Dutch Chamber of Commerce.

The amount channeled through Google Netherlands Holdings BV was around 4 billion euros more than in 2016, the documents, filed on Dec. 21, showed.

“We pay all of the taxes due and comply with the tax laws in every country we operate in around the world,” Google said in a statement.


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Judge blocks Trump contraception rule in 13 states

A federal judge on Sunday blocked Trump administration rules that would allow most businesses to opt out of covering contraception for their employees if they have moral or religious objections.

Judge Haywood Gilliam blocked the rules, which were set to go into effect on Monday, in California, Washington, D.C. and 12 other states. Gilliam granted a request for a preliminary injunction from those states, but limited the ban's scope to only the case's plaintiffs.


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>The scarf has stripes to represent the length of delays during 2018

A scarf knitted by a German commuter to show how delayed her trains were has been sold for thousands at auction.

The 1.5-metre-long red, blue and grey scarf sold for €7,550 (£6,721) on eBay, with 134 bids from 45 bidders.

The commuter, who lives in the Munich area, knitted the scarf during 2018 using different coloured stripes to represent how delayed her Deutsche Bahn trains were, according to her daughter, Sara Weber, who posted a picture of the scarf on Twitter.


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Australian state to pump oxygen into rivers as fish die

An Australian state government on Tuesday announced plans to mechanically pump oxygen into lakes and rivers after hundreds of thousands of fish have died in heatwave conditions.

Up to a million dead fish were found floating last week in the Darling River in western New South Wales state and the state government announced that 1,800 more rotting fish had since been found in Lake Hume in the state’s south.

Minister for Regional Water Niall Blair said 16 battery-powered aerators had been bought and would be placed in various drought-affected waterways after they are delivered by Wednesday.


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Dad creates app that locks your teen’s phone until they answer your texts

Dad and app creator Nick Herbert created an app called ReplyASAP to help close the communication gap between parents and teens.

The app gives parents the power to freeze their child’s phone when they don’t respond to text messages, making the device inaccessible.

This feature should force teens to reply to their parents, since they won’t be able to use other functions on their phone until they do.

With the app, parents can also set off an alarm on their child’s phone, even while its in silent mode.

more here:


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Chechnya LGBT: Dozens 'detained in new gay purge'

Activists in Russia say there has been a new crackdown against LGBT people in Chechnya.

The Russian LGBT Network believes about 40 people have been imprisoned since December - two of whom they say have died under torture.

The group has been monitoring alleged abuses in the mainly Muslim Russian republic since 2017 when dozens of gay people were reportedly detained.

A government spokesman has dismissed their latest report as "complete lies".

Chechnya, and its authoritarian leader Ramzan Kadyrov, has consistently denied allegations of illegal detentions and human rights abuses.

In an interview with the BBC last year, Mr Kadyrov said the allegations were "an invention by foreign agents" or created by activists looking for money.


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China orders death sentence for Canadian tourist amid tension over Canada’s detention of Huawei

>Case comes amid deteriorating relations between Ottawa and Beijing

A Chinese court has sentenced a Canadian man to death for drug smuggling, amid growing tensions between the countries over Canada’s detention of a Huawei executive.

Robert Lloyd Schellenberg had originally been given a 15-year sentence after being found guilty in November, but prosecutors have now said the sentence was too lenient.

Dalian Intermediate People’s Court in the northeast province of Liaoning retried Mr Schellenberg and handed down the death penalty, the court said in a brief statement on its website.


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How kidnapped teen Jayme Closs escaped killer

A United States teenage girl hid in a bath tub with her mother and listened to her father being murdered, court documents claim.

Jayme Closs, 13, was then allegedly duct taped by her wrists and ankles and dragged outside to the boot of a car and driven to the home of her kidnapper, where she would be kept under a bed for 88 days before making a perilous escape into the snowy woods of Wisconsin, news.com.au reports.

The teenager is lucky to be alive after Jake Patterson allegedly set about an elaborate and detailed plan to abduct the young teenager after spotting her boarding a school bus on his morning commute, police say.


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Canadian's death sentence in China 'horrific', family says

The family of a Canadian man who has been sentenced to death in China say their "worst fears" have been realised.

Robert Lloyd Schellenberg was given a 15-year jail term in November but, on Monday, a court said the sentence for drug smuggling was too lenient.

The ruling is likely to worsen a diplomatic row between the countries.

"It is a horrific, unfortunate, heartbreaking situation," his aunt, Lauri Nelson-Jones, told the BBC via email.

"It is our worst case fear confirmed," she added. "It is rather unimaginable what he must be feeling and thinking."


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To Get Away With Murder In LA: Another Dead Man In Ed Buck's House

There are those in this world with great power who enjoy preying on those with no power. Maybe its something about the disparity involved that "gets them off," but whatever the root causes, it's a story that plays out time and time again.


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Bent iPads: Apple says you are looking at it wrong

Beleaguered Apple has continued to dig in regarding the bent iPad controversy.

The company, which only expects to generate $84 billion in revenue this quarter, has insisted the bent appearance of their most expensive LTE-equipped iPad Pros were not a manufacturing defect which needed to be addressed, writing in a post:

>iPad Pro cellular models now feature Gigabit-class LTE, with support for more cellular bands than any other tablet. To provide optimal cellular performance, small vertical bands or “splits” in the sides of the iPad allow parts of the enclosure to function as cellular antennas. For the first time ever on an iPad, these bands are manufactured using a process called co-molding. In this high-temperature process, plastic is injected into precisely milled channels in the aluminum enclosure where it bonds to micro-pores in the aluminum surface. After the plastic cools, the entire enclosure is finished with a precision CNC machining operation, yielding a seamless integration of plastic and aluminum into a single, strong enclosure.

>These precision manufacturing techniques and a rigorous inspection process ensure that these new iPad Pro models meet an even tighter specification for flatness than previous generations. This flatness specification allows for no more than 400 microns of deviation across the length of any side — less than the thickness of four sheets of paper. The new straight edges and the presence of the antenna splits may make subtle deviations in flatness more visible only from certain viewing angles that are imperceptible during normal use. These small variances do not affect the strength of the enclosure or the function of the product and will not change over time through normal use.

more here:


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Miss Algeria beauty queen Khadija Ben Hamou hits back at racist abuse

The newly crowned winner of Miss Algeria beauty pageant has hit back at critics who have hurled racial abuse at her because of her skin colour.

"I will not back down because of the people who criticised me," Khadija Ben Hamou told Algerian news site TSA.

Slurs about her dark skin colour, nose and lips have been made on Facebook and Twitter.

Darker-skinned Algerians face discrimination in the North African state.

Ms Ben Hamou, who comes from the southern Adrar region, said that she was proud of her identity and winning the competition.


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Czech pensioner jailed for terror attacks on trains

A Czech pensioner who felled trees to block railway lines and then pretended Islamists were responsible has been jailed for four years for terrorism.

Jaromir Balda, 71, left messages at the scene proclaiming "Allahu Akbar" - or "God is great" in Arabic.

Two passenger trains hit the trees, but nobody was injured.

On top of his conviction, the court ordered psychiatric treatment for the far-right sympathiser. He said he hoped to spread fear of Muslim migrants.


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'Your country deserves much better': B.C. judge warned Canadian sentenced to death in China

>Robert Lloyd Schellenberg was sentenced to 16 months in jail for drug trafficking in 2012

A B.C. judge told Robert Lloyd Schellenberg he was lucky to be living in Canada when he sent him to jail for drug trafficking in 2012.

As the Abbotsford man faces the death penalty in China, Justice Neill Brown's admonition now reads like a chilling warning.

"Your country deserves much better from you. You are in one of the best places in the world to live," Brown said as he sentenced Schellenberg in B.C. Supreme Court in Chilliwack.


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Trump on border wall: 'Choice between right and wrong'

President Trump on Tuesday argued the U.S. is facing a “growing humanitarian and security crisis” at the southern border in a primetime address designed to seize leverage over Democrats in a prolonged shutdown battle over his demand for a border wall.

In his first address to the nation from the Oval Office, Trump pressured Democrats to grant his request for $5.7 billion in wall funding by accusing the party of ignoring what he claims is an influx of drugs and criminals that can only be stopped with a wall.


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New England Journal Of Medicine Publishes Doctors' Letter Debunking FDA Claim Of Kratom Deaths

The esteemed New England Journal of Medicine recently published a letter signed by seven doctors, scientists and public officials defending kratom against the FDA's claims of deaths in Colorado related to the medicine.


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Black Pro-Life Group Accuses Twitter, Facebook, Instagram of ‘Jim Crow’ Blacklisting

The Radiance Foundation, a pro-life organization founded by a black American, has alleged it is facing censorship on most major social networks, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. The group’s response to the blacklisting has been to call on the Silicon Valley Masters of the Universe to “Stop Jim Crow’ing us.”

The Radiance Foundation, like many other groups with a conservative agenda, has had its pro-life images removed from Instagram, its advertisements blocked on Facebook, and its posts shadow-banned on Twitter, as part of a widespread Internet blacklisting campaign.


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China Launches ‘Belt and Road’ Research Center in Egypt

China on Sunday inaugurated a research center in Cairo, Egypt, affiliated with Beijing’s ambitious multi-trillion dollar Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) that the United States believes is being used as a predatory lending practices vehicle to bury nations across the continent in debt and undermine their sovereignty.

China’s Renmin University and Egypt’s Ain Shams University on Sunday inaugurated the Belt and Road Cooperation Research Center in the Egyptian capital Cairo. During the opening ceremony, President of Ain Shams University Abdel Wahab Ezzat said that establishing the center came after one-year negotiations, which resulted in a Memorandum of Understanding that his university signed with Liu Wei, president of the Renmin University.


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Feminists Condemn Use of Promotional Models at Agriculture Show

A model has had to defend her role as a promoter at an agriculture show after puritanical progressives branded it as “wrong” and a “backward step” for women.

A debate over women’s choice to do what jobs they wanted was sparked on social media after agriculture firm Agrifac tweeted out an invitation for attendees at the Lamma show in Birmingham to have their pictures taken with their hired promoters on Tuesday.

One social media user said this form of promotion “isn’t acceptable any more” while others said it disincentivised “female agriculturalists.”

Others described it as “embarrassing” and “wrong” and “disappointing.”

Chairman of a Young Farmers club in Devon Karen said of the pictures she saw, “It is 2019 — it is frustrating we are still having these conversations.

more here:


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Woman who co-founded South Korea's largest porn site sentenced to four years in prison

A woman who co-founded Soranet, South Korea's largest pornography website, has been sentenced to four years in prison for aiding and abetting the distribution of obscene material.

Key points:

Soranet hosted thousands of spycam and revenge porn videos on overseas servers

The co-founder fled to New Zealand, but was deported last year after a public outcry

The site had over a million members at its height

It is illegal to produce and disseminate porn in South Korea.

According to the Korea Herald, the woman, surnamed Song, launched Soranet with her husband in 1999.

Ms Song, 46, was suspected of having operated the file-sharing site with her husband and another couple from September 1999 to March 2016.


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France - ‘Gilets Jaunes’ Actions Cost Economy $5 Billion

The ‘Gilets Jaunes’ (Yellow Vest) protests across France are continuing. Although the government of President Macron has made certain concessions, a small hardcore group of protesters still continues to block roundabouts, toll booths and fuel depots. For New Year’s eve, they plan another massive protest on the Parisian main avenue Champs-Elysées. #news #france

more here: https://thegoldwater.com/news/43860-France-Gilets-Jaunes-Actions-Cost-Economy-5-Billion 

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Nicotine found in 'nicotine-free' e-cigarette liquids sold in Australia, study finds

>Nicotine, the addictive agent found in tobacco cigarettes, has been discovered in a number of e-cigarette liquids claiming to be free of it.

Australian researchers investigating the potential health impacts of e-cigarettes tested 10 varieties of "nicotine-free" e-liquids and found six to contain nicotine.

The e-liquid samples, purchased online and over the counter from Australian suppliers, were also found to contain a substance known as 2-chlorophenol, an "acutely toxic" chemical typically found in insecticides and disinfectants.


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Yellow Vest protesters call for run on French banks

>Yellow Vest protesters have urged supporters to withdraw their money from French banks en masse on Friday in a deliberate attempt to disrupt “the system”. Yet despite the threat, financial institutions appear unconcerned.

Protesters called for the first wave of cash withdrawals to start at 7pm (local time) on Friday, ahead of nationwide demonstrations planned on Saturday.

“We’re going to frighten the state with legal means, without resorting to violence. We know that it isn’t the government that’s in charge, but the banks. If the banks are weakened, the state is also weakened,” a protester identified as Tahz San said in a video posted on YouTube on January 7.


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The European capital cobbled with Jewish gravestones

Each year millions of visitors walk through the cobbled streets of Prague's Old Town - without realising, most likely, that many of the stones below their feet have been looted from what was meant to be sacred ground. The BBC's Rob Cameron only recently learned their secret.

We stood, blocking the pedestrian traffic, on one of the busiest streets in the Czech capital. A steady stream of people pushed by us muttering as they clutched bags of Christmas shopping and souvenirs and we peered at the ground.

In the distance, at the bottom of Wenceslas Square, crowds congregated around street performers and kiosks selling sausages and beer.


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Egypt university expels female student for hugging male friend

Egypt's Al-Azhar university on Sunday said it had expelled a female student after she appeared in a video hugging a male colleague, accusing her of undermining the school's reputation.

The video, which went viral earlier this month, showed a young man carrying a bouquet of flowers kneeling before a young woman and then hugging her in what appeared to be a marriage proposal.

The video was apparently not filmed at Al-Azhar – a branch of Egypt's highest Sunni Muslim authority – but at another establishment, Mansoura University in the country's north.

Nevertheless the disciplinary council of the Al-Azhar University campus in Mansoura on Saturday "decided to expel the young girl definitively", university spokesman Ahmed Zarie told AFP.

He said the video had caused a "public outcry" and that the university's decision to expel her was because she had presented a "bad image" of Al-Azhar University, which strictly segregates the genders.


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Hackers Hijack Twitter Accounts Using A Simple Text Messaging Trick

Security researchers have discovered a new way to hijack a Twitter user's stream, and they've done it using a seemingly old-school method. They did it by sending SMS messages.

A team from Insinia Security managed to post tweets (with permission from the account holders, of course) without having to directly access users' accounts. It was done without logging in and without having to intercept a two-factor authentication code.

The trick doesn't work against every Twitter account. Only certain SMS-enabled accounts are vulnerable, and it's not yet known exactly how many users are impacted.

To inject a tweet, Insinia's researchers first had to track down phone numbers that were linked to Twitter accounts. Because of numerous massive data leaks and hacks, that information is much easier to come by than you might think.

more here:


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Indonesian officials say crashed Lion Air jet's cockpit voice recorder found

Indonesia has found the cockpit voice recorder from a Lion Air plane more than two months after the Boeing Co (BA.N) 737 MAX jet crashed into the sea near Jakarta, killing all 189 people on board, search officials said on Monday.

Naval Lieutenant Colonel Agung Nugroho told Reuters a weak signal from the recorder had been detected for several days and that it had been found buried in about 8 metres (26 ft) of mud in waters about 30 metres deep.


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Slightly Mad Studios CEO details Mad Box console

Slightly Mad Studios' CEO Ian Bell is reportedly working on creating a standalone console.

For the uninitiated, this is the team behind Need for Speed: Shift and Project CARS 2, based in London and founded by Bell himself in 2009.

Ian Bell took to Twitter on Wednesday to announce "The Mad Box is coming," a new console that will supposedly support VR and will be shipping in "around three years' time," according to Bell's comments to Variety. Bell stated that "it will be a console as is the Xbox or PlayStation."

“It will support most major VR headsets and those upcoming and the specs will be equivalent to a ‘very fast PC 2 years from now’,” said Bell in an email to Variety. “We’re in early talks with manufacturers of components so we can’t say much more right now other than we have the designs specced out in detail.”

more here:


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German antitrust watchdog to act against Facebook

Germany’s antitrust watchdog plans to order Facebook (FB.O) to stop gathering some user data, a newspaper reported on Sunday.

The Federal Cartel Office, which has been investigating Facebook since 2015, has already found that the social media giant abused its market dominance to gather data on people without their knowledge or consent.


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Japanese government pushes back against New York Times editorial on whaling

The Japanese government has rebutted an editorial in The New York Times urging it to halt its whaling practices, saying the country is committed to the conservation of whales.

The editorial, titled “Japan: Stop Slaughtering Whales,” was published late last year after the country announced a decision to leave the International Whaling Commission to resume commercial whaling.

The country “sets strict catch limits based on scientific methodology” established by the IWC, Foreign Ministry Press Secretary Takeshi Osuga said in a letter to the editor Friday that appeared on the newspaper’s online edition, countering the earlier editorial.


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‘I couldn’t care less’ if Putin conversation becomes public

President Donald Trump on Saturday said he would be willing to release the details of his private conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki last summer.

“I would. I don’t care,” Trump told Fox News host Jeanine Pirro in a phone interview. “I’m not keeping anything under wraps. I couldn't care less.”


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Top grammar schools in the UK according to GCSE league tables

The Tiffin Girls' School in Kingston upon Thames is at the top of the tree when it comes to GCSE performance among grammar schools in 2018.

The girls' school achieved a 100 per cent rate of pupils gaining five or more A*-C/ 9-4 grades at GCSE last year, including English and maths.

It was one of 47 grammar schools in the country to achieve such a success, but the Tiffin Girls' School is set apart by having the highest Progress 8 measure among them.


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White House Asked Pentagon for Military Options Against Iran, Report Says

>The request, which a U.S. official said 'definitely rattled people,' was made after mortars launched by Iran-affiliated militants fell near the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, The Wall Street Journal reports

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton requested the Pentagon to provide Washington with military options to strike Iran after three mortars launched by Iran-affiliated militants fell near the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday.

The incident occurred in early September. No one was wounded, as the shells fell in an open lot, but the event apparently spurred Washington to discuss the possibility of a military response.


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21 miners die as coal mine roof collapses in China

>Eighty-seven workers were inside the Shaanxi province mine at the time of the accident on Saturday.

At least 21 people have been killed after the roof of a coal mine collapsed in northern China.

A total of 87 workers were underground in the Shaanxi province mine at the time of the accident on Saturday afternoon, the official news agency Xinhua reported.

Sixty-six of those have been safely evacuated, the city government said.

The cause of the accident at the site, run by Baiji Mining, is under investigation.


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Four people killed after gas explosion in Paris

>Several victims are extracted by helicopter after a blast in a bakery overturns cars and blasts out the fronts of several shops.

The number of people who died after a suspected gas leak triggered an explosion at a bakery in Paris has risen to four.

Two firefighters and a Spanish woman were killed, while 10 people were in a critical condition and 37 others suffered less serious injuries.

The body of a fourth person was discovered among the rubble of the bakery.


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'Driver knew he was aggressive': Senior beaten by another passenger while taking transit for elderly

>Advocate for seniors says public transit systems often put costs ahead of safety

Hanka Fogelman was left bloodied and bruised after public transportation service for the elderly and disabled put her in a vehicle with a stranger who turned violent — a man Fogelman says the cab driver knew could be dangerous.

The 92-year-old Montreal woman, who is a Holocaust survivor, says as soon as she got into the back seat the driver warned her about the young man sitting next to her.

"The driver knew that he was aggressive … said not to talk to him. [He said] he's aggressive. He's a little dangerous," Fogelman told Go Public.


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Canadian air traffic controllers send pizzas to U.S. counterparts working without pay

>Air traffic controllers in the U.S. must stay on the job under partial government shutdown

Air traffic controllers from Atlantic Canada directed a fleet of special arrivals into the New York Air Traffic Control Centre on Friday night, as a gesture of solidarity and respect.

And each was covered in a layer of gooey melted cheese.

The Canadian Air Traffic Controller Association units in Gander, N.L., and Moncton, N.B., ordered pizzas for all of their colleagues at the control centre on Long Island, who have been working without pay since the partial U.S. government shutdown began on Dec. 22.


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Polish mayor stabbed on stage, in critical condition

A knife-wielding assailant on Sunday stabbed the mayor of the Polish port city of Gdansk in front of hundreds of people at a charity event, police and media said.

Paramedics resuscitated Pawel Adamowicz, 53, at the scene before taking him to hospital.

A doctor working for the regional authorities, Jerzy Karpinski, described the mayor's condition as "very serious".

A video recording of the attack posted on YouTube showed the attacker bursting onto the podium.

After knifing the mayor, he seized the microphone and claimed to have been wrongly jailed by the previous centrist government of the Civic Platform (PO) and tortured.


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Social media-linked depression more common in teenage girls

A major UK study that has found 14-year-old girls are twice as likely to show signs of social media-linked depression compared to boys would show “very similar” results if Irish young people were surveyed, a leading Irish psychiatrist has said.

Two-fifths of girls studied by University College London researchers had suffered online harassment or online bullying compared to one-quarter of boys, while 40 per cent of girls, compared to 28 per cent of boys, had suffered sleep loss because of online habits.


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Death Metal Label Shuts Down After Paypal, Credit Processors Pull Out Due to DOJ, FDIC Initiative

A wide-sweeping initiative from the United States Department of Justice back in 2013 called Operation Choke Point was initially designed to curb payment processing for “terrorist” activities, “fraudulent” purchases, and money laundering. However, according to one record label owner, the banks who have been in the news for demonetizing and deplatforming legitimate businesses over the last few months are doing so at the behest of those overseeing Operation Choke Point.

It started with a Kotaku in Action thread, which notes that a death metal/black metal record label has shut down in the wake of PayPal pulling out support for processing purchases, along with the creditors at Visa and MasterCard because the company was labeled as “high risk”, “promoting hatred”, “promoting violence”, and “promoting hate speech”. In the case of Elegy Records, a label that hosted all sorts of death metal music since 1996, their closure comes from the inability to sign with a normal credit processor due to being “high-risk”.

Elegy Records’ owner, Rob, told the outlet DeathMetal.org, in a piece published on December 17th, 2018, that PayPal simply said he could no longer use their services, following instigation from a website called MetalSucks, which is headed up by Matt Goldberg and Ben Umanov. The banks also abruptly cut ties with Rob as well, where he explained…

>They didn’t even have the business courtesy to inform me they were going to cut ties. I came to the realization of this when I went to process an order and the response message was “Invalid Merchant account” When I spoke to a representative, they informed me they did not wish to work with me because I promoted hate. I did receive a letter from them stating they were going to end the business relationship the date of termination was a day before the letter was written and a day before it was mailed. What a great banking service.

>This was a death blow, at this point I had no means to accept any form of payments aside from cash or Money order but there is no way to survive in that business model.”

more here:


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Facebook is asking people to submit their I.D.s to prove their accounts are real

If Facebook suspects your account may be fraudulent, they may lock it and say that to restore the account, you need to send them identification to verify that you are who you say you are.

But with all the recent scandals surrounding Facebook data breaches, why would the social media platform ask for something so personal as an ID?

Facebook says it would ask you to upload an id for two reasons: To confirm the account your trying to access is actually yours; or to confirm your name.

Facebook says they ask all users to go by their real names, though many users don't abide by that rule.

more here:


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Call for obesity to be reclassified as a disease

>Some experts say that obesity will not be tackled properly until it is seen as a disease but others say this could be dangerous.

Leading medical experts are recognising obesity as a disease and urgently calling on the government to do the same.

Talking exclusively to Sky News, the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) said until obesity is recognised as a disease, rather than a lifestyle choice, its prevalence is unlikely to be reduced.


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Top Chinese Retailers Slash iPhone Prices as Demand Sputters

Two major Chinese retailers have slashed prices on Apple Inc.’s latest iPhones, an unusual move that underscores how demand for the marquee device is flagging in the world’s largest smartphone market.

Top chain Suning Commerce Group Ltd. promoted a 128GB iPhone XR for 5,799 yuan ($860) on Friday, 17 percent cheaper than the price on Apple’s own website. JD.com, China’s largest online electronics retailer, was offering the same model for 6,099 yuan, which is 900 yuan cheaper than the official price.

Apple discourages retailers from discounting iPhones and such reductions are rare so soon after their release, with the lower prices coming just four months after the models were unveiled. The price cuts come about a week after Apple lowered its revenue outlook for the first time in almost two decades, citing weaker demand in China. That in turn stoked concerns not just about the health of the consumer electronics market but also a faster-than-expected slowdown of the world’s second-largest economy.

more here:


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Former Obama Cabinet Member Julián Castro Announces 2020 Presidential Bid

Former United States Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro formally announced his presidential campaign on Saturday at an event in Texas.

He stated, “You see, I learned from my mother so many years ago in this community that when we want change, we don’t wait for change. We work for it. When my grandmother got here almost 100 years ago, I am sure she never could have imagined that just two generations later, one of her grandsons would be serving as a member of the United States Congress and the other would be standing here with you today to say these words — I am a candidate for President of the United States of America.”

Castro, 44, also served as the mayor of San Antonio, Texas from 2009 until he joined Obama’s cabinet in 2014. He was also famously considered a frontrunner to be former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s running mate in 2016, but she ultimately went with Senator Tim Kaine.

Castro is the identical twin brother of Joaquín Castro, who currently represents Texas’s 20th congressional district.

more here:


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All Icelanders Automatically Registered as Organ Donors Next Year

Alma Möller, Iceland’s Director of Health, is urging for there to be a broad public conversation about upcoming changes to Iceland’s existing organ donation law, RÚV reports. As of the start of the new year, all Icelanders will automatically be designated as organ donors unless they specifically opt out.

Organ donations began being made in Iceland in 1993 and since then, about 100 people have donated organs, benefiting 350 people. Currently, you must specially register to become an organ donor in Iceland, but this will change in 2019. Alma says that it’s very important that more people become open to the idea of donating their organs after their death, but also that those who wish to opt out of this have all the information they need to be able to do so.


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University seminar teaches faculty not to judge ‘quality’ of writing when grading

American University is hosting a seminar next month to teach faculty how to assess writing without judging its quality. In the seminar’s own words: “grading ain’t just grading.”

It’s led by Asao Inoue, a University of Washington-Tacoma professor, and the purpose is to pursue “antiracist ends” through writing assessments.

A national scholarly organization that preaches its “commitment” to academic excellence came out swinging against the seminar, telling The College Fix that Inoue’s ideas are “destroying the very idea that composition classes should teach all students to write well.”

more here:


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Dozens of Democrats Flock to Puerto Rico for ‘Hamilton’ Broadway Show Amid Shutdown

Dozens of Congressional Democrats flocked to Puerto Rico on Friday to watch the opening weekend of Hamilton amid the ongoing government shutdown, in a trip that organizers hope will allow them to lobby for additional federal funding to the impoverished island.

According to Luis Miranda, a Democratic consultant and the father of Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, the trip will provide an opportunity for members of Congress, including Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, to see the need for further investment to Puerto Rico, with the island recovering from the impact of the 2017 hurricane that devastated large swathes of its infrastructure.

“They’ll get to experience firsthand the needs of the island, so that they go back and sort of fight (President) Trump and the Republicans,” he said in an interview with CBS News.

Documents published by The Wall Street Journal‘s Andrew Scurria show hotel rooms at the island’s Concha hotel will cost a hefty $289 a night, while tickets to the show range from $200 to $350.

more here:


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One person dead, 12 more hospitalized after suspected Fentanyl leads to 'mass overdose,' police say

A “mass overdose” in a California home Saturday morning left one person dead and another 12 hospitalized after police say the victims may have ingested fentanyl, a powerful opioid.

Chico Police Chief Michael O’Brien said at a press conference that police received a 911 call from someone inside the residence of a home in the 1100 block of Santana Court about 9 a.m.

“Upon arrival, Chico police officers found multiple individuals in what appeared to be life-threatening overdose conditions.”

O’Brien said that officers performed CPR and administered six doses of naloxone, which can reverse the effects of an overdose and comes in half-doses. Chico police have been equipped with naloxone since 2018.

more here:


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Plausible OnePlus 7 leak shows all-screen, notch-free, sliding design

What we've determined is a plausible OnePlus 7 leak has just popped up over on Slashleaks. The image compares an unknown device, presumed to be the Oneplus 7, to the current OnePlus 6T. Both appear to be in cases to disguise their identities (not an uncommon practice during testing), but a few key details are visible. This new phone skips the notch and appears to have a sliding design. If it's legit, the OnePlus 7 might finally deliver the all-screen dream to the mainstream.

more here:


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Samsung may have briefly shown the Galaxy S10 in a One UI press release

There is just over one month to go until Samsung's UNPACKED event in San Francisco, but the company may have shown the world what the Galaxy S10 looks like, albeit briefly. A Reddit user spotted an alleged render of the unreleased device in a One UI press release, which looks like a blunder by Samsung at first glance.

However, the user has no previous posts or comments, so it is worth keeping in mind that this could be a marketing tactic by Samsung to generate more speculation about the Galaxy S10. The timing of the Reddit post is also suspect, mainly as it came just a day before Samsung announced its Galaxy UNPACKED event, where it is likely that the company will announce the Galaxy S10 series.

The potential render is in keeping with Samsung's Infinity-O display, which the company debuted with the Galaxy A8s in December last year. The camera cut-out is on the opposite side of the screen to the A8s, but this consistent with other Galaxy S10 leaks on which we have reported.

more here:


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AMD Radeon VII benchmarks put 25 games through their paces

AMD made a variety of announcements during CES 2019, but perhaps the most exciting one was that of the Radeon VII. The new GPU, which is built using a 7nm process, is AMD’s answer to NVIDIA’s RTX 2080, but of course, most of what we know is limited to what AMD has told us so far. When the card was first announced, AMD actually listed benchmarks obtained from 25 different games, but they were doing a bit of hiding in AMD’s announcement.

Instead of putting these benchmarks front and center, the company actually put them in the footnotes of a press release for the Radeon VII. That means they weren’t detected right away, but now that they’ve been discovered, we’re getting a better idea of how the Radeon VII might perform when it starts shipping out to consumers next month.

more here:


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Google Chromecast Audio Dongle Is Being Officially Discontinued

Google has confirmed that it is discontinuing its Chromecast Audio with what appears to be an immediate effect. The company will sell off the remaining stock of the dongle and it seems that inventory won’t be replenished once Google and other vendors have sold out of the tiny dongle.

Google has been offering the minute little dongle since 2015 and it has proven to be an extremely popular an inexpensive gadget purchase over the last four years.

However, it seems that the end of the road has come for this product with Google choosing to focus its effort on its growing lineup of speakers rather than investing time and effort into this dongle. An official statement has been made on the subject:

>Our product portfolio continues to evolve, and now we have a variety of products for users to enjoy audio. We have therefore stopped manufacturing our Chromecast Audio products. We will continue to offer assistance for Chromecast Audio devices, so users can continue to enjoy their music, podcasts and more.

more here:


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Activision Blizzard Splits With Bungie: Wall Street Reacts

By now, you've probably heard the news (or perhaps your teenager told you?): Gaming giant Activision Blizzard is splitting up with one of its most popular game producers, Bungie.

In a terse statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday, Activision reported that, henceforth, Bungie will "assume full publishing rights and responsibilities for the Destiny franchise," once one of the most popular video games on the market. "Going forward," said Activision, "Bungie will own and develop the franchise."

Investors clearly didn't like the news, with Activision stock falling as much as 13% in Friday morning trading and no fewer than six separate analysts cutting their price targets on Activision stock in response. How should investors react?

more here:


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Poll: Only 39% of Service Members Approve of Transgender Troops

A poll of United States service members and veterans finds that only 39 percent approve of transgender individuals serving in the military.

When the sex of the respondent is a factor, the poll – which surveyed the views of 1,031 service members and veterans – shows that 37 percent of male members approve of transgender troops, while 62 percent of females approve.

Only 32 percent of the Greatest Generation (World War II) approve of transgender troops, while 39 percent of Baby Boomers, 42 percent of Generation X, and 55 percent of Millennials approve.

more here:


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Jews to flee UK if LGBT agenda forced on faith schools

An Orthodox campaigner is warning the British government that if it moves forward with plans to promote LGBT lifestyles to children in faith-based schools, thousands of Jewish families will leave the United Kingdom.

Shraga Stern – a father and Charedi activist – had a letter written by attorneys on his behalf to British Education Minister Nick Gibb, outlining the lawlessness of the government’s power grab in the school system.

more here:


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To Catch A Vigilante: Is Media More Concerned With Pedohunters Than Rampant Online Grooming?

The internet is a veritable playground for predators. According to recent statistics, one in five children are solicited for sex online. WhatsApp, Kik, Snapchat, Periscope, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and other sites and apps become the hunting ground for predators in seek of young children to groom, blackmail and sometimes even facilitate meetups for sex.


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"Iconic Israeli Street Food" Story Fail

I'm not sure what the folks at Ha'aretz were thinking earlier this week or how they thought their story on "shawarma, the iconic Israeli street food" would play out, but the results when they proclaimed the results are pretty much what you might expect. The jokes pretty much write themselves.


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Nuns in India reveal enduring abuse in Catholic church

The stories spill out in the sitting rooms of Catholic convents, where portraits of Jesus keep watch and fans spin quietly overhead. They spill out in church meeting halls bathed in fluorescent lights, and over cups of cheap instant coffee in convent kitchens. Always, the stories come haltingly, quietly. Sometimes, the nuns speak at little more than a whisper.

Across India, the nuns talk of priests who pushed into their bedrooms and of priests who pressured them to turn close friendship ..


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Scientists find massive ancient whale with stomach full of fish and other whales

>Bones found with Basilosaurus remains found in Egypt suggest it was a top hunter that took down large prey

An excavation in Egypt has revealed the last meal of a monstrous creature that prowled the oceans millions of years ago.

Despite its sinuous, snake-like body and a name that means “king lizard”, Basilosaurus was in fact an ancestor of modern whales.


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US approved thousands of child bride requests over the last decade, data shows

Thousands of requests by men to bring in child and adolescent brides to live in the United States were approved over the past decade, according to government data obtained by The Associated Press. In one case, a 49-year-old man applied for admission for a 15-year-old girl.

The approvals are legal: The Immigration and Nationality Act does not set minimum age requirements. And in weighing petitions for spouses or fiancees, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services goes by whether the marriage is legal in the home country and then whether the marriage would be legal in the state where the petitioner lives.

But the data raises questions about whether the immigration system may be enabling forced marriage and about how U.S. laws may be compounding the problem despite efforts to limit child and forced marriage. Marriage between adults and minors is not uncommon in the United States, and most states allow children to marry with some restrictions.

There were more than 5,000 cases of adults petitioning on behalf of minors and nearly 3,000 examples of minors seeking to bring in older spouses or fiances, according to the data requested by the Senate Homeland Security Committee in 2017 and compiled into a report.

Some victims of forced marriage say the lure of a U.S. passport combined with lax U.S. marriage laws are partly fueling the petitions.

more here:


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Destiny 3 Will Arrive in 2020, According to Research Firm Analysts

Following yesterday’s major news that Bungie and Activision would part ways, many were left with one major question: what will Bungie do next? Will the studio double-down on the Destiny IP, which it retained in the divorce, or would it instead opt to move onto something entirely different? Well, according to research firm Cowen & Company, they seem to think they know what the developer’s next steps will be.

After yesterday’s news broke, Cowen & Company shared its initial thoughts on what transpired with its investors. In the process, C&C said that it now anticipates Bungie to release Destiny 3 by next year in 2020. This prediction is in line with Bungie’s previous three-year development schedule which saw Destiny first arrive in 2014 and Destiny 2 three years later in 2017. Assuming Bungie sticks to this, Destiny 3 in 2020 is just a logical conclusion to draw.

Additionally, Cowen & Company said that they think this move overall will greatly benefit both Bungie and Destiny as a whole. “Ultimately, we think this decision is probably for the best for Destiny as a franchise, as we think having two head cooks in the kitchen with somewhat divergent views created some issues with the development process and led the game down some blind alleys,” they told investors.

more here:


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Epic Games gets an F rating from the Better Business Bureau

The Better Business Bureau, the American consumer watchdog, has given Epic Games an F rating after it failed to respond to over 200 complaints from the organisation on behalf of customers. 279 complaints have been made over the last three years, all but eight in the last year, and Epic hasn’t responded to 247 of them.

Most of the complaints relate to customer service or refund issues, says the BBB. The blog post from the organisation cites a couple of them. One claims that Epic didn’t protect their account and several charges were made to it without the customer’s knowledge. Another alleges that Epic wouldn’t respond after after an unauthorised charge of $160.

It’s worth noting that the BBB is a private organisation and, for a large company like Epic Games, the rating probably won’t mean very much. Valve received the same rating in 2015. Blizzard, meanwhile, has an A+, as does Activision. Despite the positive ratings, they both have less than two stars from customer reviews.

more here:


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Silent, water-emitting trains fuelled by hydrogen ‘to be introduced to UK railways in two years’

>Upgrading existing rolling stock means diesel can be phased out without costly electrification of railways

Silent, water-emitting hydrogen-fuelled trains are to become reality in less than three years on some main lines across the UK, under ambitious plans to convert existing diesel rolling stock.

Polluting diesel engines are to be stripped out and replaced with hydrogen tanks on as many as 100 trains, under the preliminary terms of the deal.

The arrangement between UK rolling stock owner Eversholt and French firm Alstom will convert existing Class 321 trains, which were built in 1988 and are used on the Greater Anglican network.


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Trump says he won’t sign deal to avert shutdown, demands funds for border security

President Trump said Thursday he would not sign a stopgap spending bill unless it includes money to build a wall along the Mexico border, sending large parts of the federal government lurching toward a shutdown on Saturday.

His comments came after an emergency meeting with House Republican leaders, where Trump revealed he would reject a measure passed in the Senate the night before. That measure would fund many government agencies through Feb. 8, but it would not include any new money for the border wall.

“I’ve made my position very clear. Any measure that funds the government must include border security,” Trump said in an event at the White House. He added, “Walls work, whether we like it or not. They work better than anything.”

more here:


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Video shows migrant children at Arizona centre being pushed and shoved

>Prosecutors will decide whether criminal charges are to be brought after a string of allegations of physical and sexual abuse.

Staff at an immigration centre in Arizona could face criminal charges after video footage showed children being dragged and shoved.

Maricopa County Sheriff's Office investigated incidents that took place on three days in September and now prosecutors will decide whether to bring charges.

The videos, first obtained by The Arizona Republic, show staff dragging children on the ground and pushing a boy against a door.


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T-Mobile Introduces “Caller Verified” Service for Better Spam, Spoof Call Protection

Illegal caller ID spoofing is a big problem right now in the spam call space, so big that the FCC has demanded wireless carriers take action. One of the first to do so is T-Mobile, who just introduced “Caller Verified,” a service they hope will help customers avoid spoof and spam calling.

Caller Verified informs customers on the call screen whether or not the incoming call has been verified to be authentic and not intercepted by scammers or spammers. It’s not a call blocker, though, in case you were wondering. Instead, it aims to inform you of the type of call coming through and whether or not you should answer it.

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VLC prepares to add AirPlay support as it crosses 3 billion downloads

VLC, the hugely popular media playing service, is filling one of its gaps with the addition of AirPlay support as it has just crossed an incredible three billion users.

The new feature was revealed by Jean-Baptiste Kempf, one of the service’s lead developers, in an interview with Variety at CES and it will give users a chance to beam content from their Android or iOS device to an Apple TV. The addition, which is due in the upcoming version 4 of VLC, is the biggest new feature since the service added Chromecast support last summer.

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Amazon may be going after cloud gaming, but Microsoft has a big head start

Amazon, Microsoft and Google are in the midst of an intense battle to win business from companies moving their workloads to the cloud. Now, there's brewing competition among them in a very different corner of the cloud market: gaming.

Microsoft has long been a gaming powerhouse, having introduced the Xbox console in 2000. In expanding how and where people can play games, Microsoft said in October that it will start testing a cloud gaming offering this year. Its Project xCloud will work on mobile devices. That announcement followed the acquisition last January of PlayFab, a start-up that provides game developers with cloud-based tools.

Amazon has kept quiet about its ambitions in the market. But The Information reported on Thursday that the company has held conversations with publishers about releasing games on a new service as early as 2020. That project would build on previous efforts to support game developers. Amazon declined to comment on the report.

Google, meanwhile, has started testing a cloud gaming service — under the name Project Stream — with a limited number of users.

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Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and wife MacKenzie to divorce

Amazon founder and Chief Executive Jeff Bezos, the world's richest man, and wife MacKenzie Bezos are divorcing after 25 years of marriage, the couple said on Twitter on Wednesday.

Jeff Bezos, 54, has a fortune that has soared as high as $160 billion (125 billion pounds) thanks to his stake in Amazon, which again became Wall Street's most valuable company this week, surpassing Microsoft Inc (MSFT.O).

Bezos has credited MacKenzie, 48, for her support when he uprooted the young couple from New York to Seattle so he could launch the online bookseller that grew into one of the world's largest retailers. MacKenzie, a Princeton graduate who is now a novelist, did accounting for Amazon for its first year after it was founded in 1994.

The couple decided to divorce after a long period of "loving exploration" and trial separation, and expect to continue as partners in ventures and projects, according to the joint statement.

Amazon shares were up 0.2 percent in midday trading on Wednesday. The divorce should have no material impact on the company and its shares, said Thomas Forte, an analyst at DA Davidson & Co.

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Man attacks 20 children with hammer at primary school in China's capital Beijing

A 49-year-old man has been arrested after attacking 20 children at a primary school in Beijing with a hammer.

Key points:

The suspect is a man who performed maintenance at the school

The suspect allegedly wielded a hammer he normally used for work during a class

Three students suffered heavy injuries, but authorities say their conditions are stable

The Xicheng district government said in a post on its Weibo account three of the children suffered heavy injuries and were in a stable condition. There were no reports of any deaths.

Local police also said on Weibo the attack took place at Xuanwu Normal Experimental Affiliated Number One Primary School at 11:17am (local time).

The suspect, surnamed Jia, was apprehended at the scene, the statement said.

A native of northern Heilongjiang province, Mr Jia was employed through a labour service company to perform daily maintenance work at the school.


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>Scientists pick up large number of blasts over a few weeks

Scientists have spotted repeated blasts of radio signals coming from deep in space.

The breakthrough is only the second time scientists have seen such a repeating radio burst. It both deepens the mystery and offers a potential opportunity to finally understand what might be throwing out the burst from a galaxy billions of light years away.


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Stranded seals wreak havoc in Canadian town

Dozens of seals have become stranded in a Canadian town, blocking traffic and the entrances to homes and businesses.

Two of the animals in Roddickton-Bide Arm, Newfoundland, died after being struck by a car. There are concerns others will starve to death.

It is against Canadian law to interfere with marine mammals such as seals.

The creatures became stranded after nearby waters suddenly froze over last week, preventing their return to the ocean.

Experts say the speed at which the bay froze over may have disorientated the animals and caused them to move inland instead of towards open waters.


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Indian Science Congress Speakers Say Newton Was Wrong, Ancient Demon-King Had Planes

At this year's annual meeting of the Indian Science Congress from Jan. 3 to 7, senior research scientist Kannan Jagathala Krishnan dismissed Albert Einstein's theory of relativity as "a big blunder" and said Isaac Newton didn't really understand how gravity works.

Nageswara Rao, a vice chancellor at Andhra University in South India, said that Ravana, a demon god with 10 heads, had 24 kinds of aircraft of varying sizes and capacities — and that India was making test-tube babies thousands of years ago.


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Genetic testing is the future of healthcare, but many experts say companies like 23andMe

As millions of Americans sat down to Thanksgiving dinner, the biomedical researcher James Hazel sent out a stark warning about the genetic-testing kits that he surmised would be a hot topic of conversation.

Most of them are neither safe nor private.

Hazel reached this conclusion after reviewing the privacy policies and terms of service of nearly 100 genetic-testing companies that offer their services directly to people. Most people use these services either by submitting a sample of saliva or uploading their raw digital DNA signature to a public database. Their lofty common draw is enabling people to learn more about their health, family history, and ultimately their identity.


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The Hidden Connection Between NXIVM And Scientology

We recently wrote about how the NXIVM sex trafficking cult was using a precedent set by Scientology to protect themselves from charges of forced labor, coercion and blackmail. There may be a missing link that accounts for these startling similar styles of operation.


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Bird Box fans urged by Netflix not to do #birdboxchallenge due to safety concerns

Netflix has asked fans of its popular movie Bird Box to stop a challenge in which people do things while blindfolded, over fears they could end up injured in hospital.

Bird Box has become Netflix's most popular original release with the streaming giant saying more than 45 million users watched the film in just seven days.

But the apocalyptic film has also inspired the latest internet craze: the #birdboxchallenge.

Fans of the movie have taken to social media to post images and videos of themselves blindfolded, just like lead actress Sandra Bullock has to do in order to survive.


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Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and wife to divorce after 25 years of marriage

>According to a Twitter statement, the couple decided to divorce after a long period of "loving exploration and trial separation".

Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of US online retail empire Amazon and the world's richest man, has taken to Twitter to publicly announce his impending divorce.

In a tweet published to his authenticated page on Wednesday, Mr Bezos said that he and his wife MacKenzie will divorce after 25 years of marriage.


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Apple reportedly hired a major Facebook critic and former employee for its privacy team

Apple has recruited a former employee and vocal critic of Facebook to join its privacy team, according to the Financial Times.

Sandy Parakilas, who spent a year and a half monitoring privacy and policy compliance by software developers before leaving Facebook in October 2012, will reportedly become a privacy manager on Apple's policy team.

Apple has been placing a huge emphasis on its privacy features, especially compared with its peers including Facebook, Google and Amazon. This was on display in a big way at this year's Consumer Electronics Show, where Apple plastered a large ad on the side of a hotel overlooking the site of the conference.

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TV Networks Consider Not Airing Trump’s Border Security Address

Several major television networks are apparently unsure whether or not to air President Trump’s live address to the nation on border security Tuesday due to concern over what he will say.

According to The Hill, CNN and Fox News Channel are planning to air Trump’s address on border security, while the basic cable networks CBS, NBC, and ABC have not committed one way or the other.

MSNBC has not made a public comment one way or the other, and the network has repeatedly opted not to air Trump events before.

Trump plans to address the nation for the first time from the Oval Office Tuesday night on “the humanitarian and national security crisis on our Southern Border.”

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Mexico fuel shortage worries industry as lines in capital grow

Gasoline shortages in Mexico sparked by a crackdown on fuel theft prompted warnings from business leaders that industries like carmaking will suffer if the shortfalls persist as lines at gas stations in the capital grew on Wednesday.

The drive to eradicate a crime that has deprived state coffers of billions of dollars is President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s first major move against chronic corruption since taking office on Dec. 1, but risks angering consumers and hurting the economy.


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France, Germany approve extension of reconciliation treaty to shore up EU

France and Germany have agreed to deepen a 1963 treaty of post-war reconciliation in a bid to show that the European Union’s main axis remains strong and counter growing eurosceptic nationalism among some other members.

The extension to the Elysee Treaty approved by the German and French cabinets will be signed by Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron in the German border city of Aachen, an historical symbol of European concord, on Jan. 22.


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German police say video footage contradicts far-right politician’s account of attack

German authorities now say that video footage appears to contradict some claims made by far-right politician Frank Magnitz about a Monday night attack that left him hospitalized.

Magnitz, a lawmaker with Germany’s Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, was hospitalized Tuesday after being reportedly attacked by at least three people in the city of Bremen.

AfD leaders said that Magnitz was beaten with lumber, knocked to the ground and kicked until he was unconscious and called the attack “clearly” an assassination attempt.


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Canadians support Ottawa’s decision to arrest Huawei executive, poll shows

More than 80 per cent of Canadians have negative impressions of China’s authoritarian rulers and more than half believe Canada was right to detain a senior Huawei executive for possible extradition to the United States, a new poll shows.

Canada’s arrest of Meng Wanzhou, currently released on $10-million bail and confined to the Vancouver area, has severely strained relations with Beijing, sparking angry demands for her to be returned home and the imprisonment of two Canadians on allegations of endangering China’s national security.


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'I'm happy': Saudi teen Rahaf Mohammed Alqunun who fled 'abusive' family is given UN refugee status

>Rahaf Alqunun, 18, refuses to see her father, who has flown to Bangkok to meet her.

A Saudi teenager who fled from her "abusive" family says she is "happy" after being given UN refugee status.

Rahaf Alqunun, who fears being killed by her relatives if she returns to Saudi Arabia, is currently in Thailand where UN refugee authorities have been processing her request for asylum.

Australia's department of home affairs said on Wednesday the UN High Commissioner for Refugees had referred her case to officials in Canberra who were considering granting the 18-year-old refugee resettlement.


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Shutdown makes it difficult for NASA to attract young talent, says tech labor leader

Labor leader Paul Shearon on Tuesday said the ongoing partial government shutdown makes the prospect of working at a federal agency such as NASA less appealing for young workers.

"NASA has been a very attractive place for people to go to work," Shearon, the president of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, told Hill.TV's Buck Sexton and Krystal Ball on "Rising."

"If you're a young person coming out of college today, and you've got maybe an advanced degree in engineering or science, and you take a look and you say wait a second, how could it possibly be that NASA scientists are not working, and they're at home not getting paid? That's not what I went to school for," he continued. "My love of science is far greater than my love for my employer."


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Yellow vest organiser James Goddard, who has been abusing Remain MPs outside parliament, once lived

>Self-declared patriot voiced wish to move to US and called UK ‘crazy rock full of liberal arseholes’

A leading member of the “yellow vests” who have been disrupting Westminster with abusive anti-EU protests once lived in Spain, it has emerged.

James Goddard took advantage of the freedom of movement offered by what he now calls a “federal European superstate” to live and work in the country.

The self-declared “British patriot” has also voiced his wish to move to the US and “get off this crazy rock full of liberal arseholes”.


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Christian man 'beaten and threatened by Islamic extremists' in Pakistan to be deported imminently

>'He will be a target – the Home Office haven't listened to anything'

A Christian man who was allegedly beaten and repeatedly threatened with execution by Islamic extremists in Pakistan is to be deported imminently.

Asher Sampson, 41, is currently being driven to a charter flight set to take off at 10pm tonight after 15 years living in the UK.

He told The Independent on Wednesday afternoon that he was “terrified” at the prospect of being sent back to his home city of Abbottabad in Pakistan, where says he has “no one and nowhere to go”.


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Mexican president staying out of wall debate, calling it an internal US matter

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador on Wednesday downplayed questions about President Trump's Oval Office address, in which he argued a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border is necessary to keep out drugs and criminals.

Reuters reported that López Obrador called Trump's push for a border wall an internal U.S. matter that has been heightened by the U.S. political system.

"When a new president takes office, almost as soon as they take power, they're already thinking about reelection, and their opponents are doing the same," López Obrador said at a news conference, noting that Mexico elects presidents for a six-year term.


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World's biggest tobacco company vows to phase out cigarettes

>Philip Morris International - which makes Marlboro and other leading brands - is moving into smoke-free products.

In a swish research centre on the edge of a Swiss lake, the world's biggest cigarette company is re-inventing itself.

Philip Morris International - which makes Marlboro and several other leading brands - has vowed to phase out cigarettes and move into smoke-free products instead.

And the complex of laboratories is a signal of intent.


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AMD Reveals Radeon VII: High-End 7nm Vega Video Card Arrives February 7th for $699

As it turns out, the video card wars are going to charge into 2019 quite a bit hotter than any of us were expecting. Moments ago, as part of AMD’s CES 2019 keynote, CEO Dr. Lisa Su announced that AMD will be releasing a new high-end, high-performance Radeon graphics card. Dubbed the Radeon VII (Seven), AMD has their eyes set on countering NVIDIA’s previously untouchable GeForce RTX 2080. And, if the card lives up to AMD’s expectations, then come February 7th it may just as well do that.

Today’s announcement is interesting in that it’s just as much about technology as it is the 3D chess that is the market positioning fights between AMD and NVIDIA. Technically AMD isn’t announcing any new GPUs here – regular readers will correctly guess that we’re talking about Vega 20 – but the situation in the high-end market has played out such that there’s now a window for AMD to bring their cutting-edge Vega 20 GPU to the consumer market, and this is a window AMD is looking to take full advantage of.

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Oculus Rift + Touch Now Permanently Priced at $350

After Oculus’ big Black Friday sale, which saw Rift & Touch temporarily cut from its regular price of $400 to $350, Oculus now says they’re permanently dropping the price of the bundle to just $350.

We expect to see the new permanent price come to the Oculus Store shortly, although all official retailers in the US now show the new $350 price. In the US, this includes Amazon, Best Buy, New Egg, Microsoft Store, and Micro Center.

An Oculus spokesperson confirmed with us that the bundle will be priced at $350 USD, and “equivalent across all countries where we currently sell. You’ll see prices update to reflect this across regions and channels over the next week or so.”

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LG unveils world's first rollable television

LG Electronics has revealed a rollable TV, which can be rolled away to be stored out of sight at the click of a button to "liberate users from the limitations of the wall".

The company revealed the 65-inch Signature OLED TV R at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the biggest trade show of the year, in Las Vegas this week.

Unfurled the television looks like it has a regular thin 4K OLED screen. However, the display is actually flexible, allowing it to roll up into its base when not in use.

The base doubles as a soundbar, meaning the television has a minimal presence in the room when not in use. It can be placed in front of a window or bookshelf — areas people would usually hesitate to cover with a large screen.

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‘The Division 2’ Coming to Epic Games Store, Pulled From Steam

Ubisoft’s “The Division” franchise appears to be ditching Steam on PC. The publisher is bringing “Tom Clancy’s The Division 2” to the Epic Games Store, it announced on Wednesday. It will not be sold on Steam, the company confirmed to Variety.

The online action-RPG sequel comes out on Mar. 15 on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The PC version is available to preorder now on the Ubisoft Store and the Epic Games Store. Although the game had a product info page on Steam — and its predecessor is sold there as well — a Ubisoft representative told Variety it has no plans to release “The Division 2” on Valve’s storefront. So, how did the listing get there? Ubisoft said “coming soon” pages are a collaborative effort. Publishers use Steam’s developer tools to create pages and Valve reviews them and makes them live once the publisher says they are ready. Since “The Division 2” is now semi-exclusive to the Epic Games Store, Ubisoft and/or Valve pulled the Steam listing shortly after today’s announcement.

This new partnership doesn’t mean Ubisoft is totally abandoning Steam. A number of upcoming titles will launch on both it and Uplay, including “Far Cry: New Dawn,” the publisher told Variety. All games previously released on Uplay and Steam are also still available on both platforms. But, Ubisoft and Epic said they will partner on additional select titles in the future. They will reveal more details later this year.

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Supreme Court will not intervene in mystery grand jury fight

The Supreme Court on Tuesday afternoon denied a request to block a lower court order regarding a subpoena in a case that remains a mystery to most observers.

The subpoena, which is being kept under seal along with the other details of the case, which is thought to be tied to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign.


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India scientists dismiss Einstein theories

Scientists in India have hit out at speakers at a major conference for making irrational claims, including that ancient Hindus invented stem cell research.

Some academics at the annual Indian Science Congress dismissed the findings of Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein.

Hindu mythology and religion-based theories have increasingly become part of the Indian Science Congress agenda.

But experts said remarks at this year's summit were especially ludicrous.

The 106th Indian Science Congress, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, runs from 3-7 January.


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"Suspicious packages" found at consulates in Australia

Several foreign consulates have been evacuated in Melbourne as Australian officials note they are responding to multiple "hazardous material" events in the city. The Australian Federal Police say that police and emergency services are examining suspicious packages delivered to the foreign consulates.

The statement Wednesday said: "The circumstances surrounding these incidents are being investigated."

Melbourne's Metropolitan Fire Brigade said it had been called to "a number of incidents" across the city, BBC News reports.


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Historian Says European Art Exhibits Should be ‘Reconsidered’ Due to Modern Extremist Groups

One historian argued last week that museums should reconsider their European art exhibits in light of the rise of extremist groups around the globe.

Historian Alexander Kauffman published a column in a niche art magazine on Christmas warning museum curators about the impact of their European Art collections. Kauffman argues that racists use European Art to defend beliefs about racial superiority.

“European painting and sculpture has formed the core of our museums since they were founded. These works usually inhabit the largest and most central galleries in buildings that are themselves European in style, modeled after the great royal and imperial collections of England, France, and Germany. Because the centering of Europe is baked into the architecture of these institutions, some may not see the connection to white supremacy today,” Kauffman wrote. “But white supremacists do. Europe’s cultural prestige is their evidence for the racial superiority of white America.”

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Death toll rises to 28 in Russian apartment block collapse

Twenty-eight bodies have been recovered from the debris of an apartment block in Russia that partially collapsed in an apparent explosion, while 13 people remained unaccounted for, the regional emergencies ministry said on Wednesday.

The blast, initially thought to have been caused by a gas leak, damaged 48 apartments in a 10-storey building in the industrial city of Magnitogorsk in the early hours on Monday, 1,700 km (1,050 miles) east of Moscow.


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Man caught licking doorbell for three hours

>'This just kind of reinforces how important it is to have security within your home,' says homeowner Sylvia Dungan

A California man was caught on surveillance camera licking a homeowner's intercom system for hours.

Roberto Arroyo was shown getting overly intimate with the doorbell system at the home in Salinas while maintaining eye contact with the camera.

The video shows the 33-year-old approaching the home’s porch in the early hours of Saturday, before embarking on the marathon intercom-licking session.

According to the Salinas Police Department, he entered the frame several times between 2am and 5am.


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Is The Transgender Transition Industry Dangerous To Kids?

From the 1930s on Behavioral psychologists like John Watson and B.F. Skinner showed how malleable the developing mind is. In a somewhat monstrous and highly controversial experiment, Watson was able to "train" an infant to fear a fur coat showing how powerful conditioning is to impressionable minds. With new products on the market for toddlers like the "tuck buddies" (yes, I did notice what that rhymes with) underwear, it seems certain agendas are attempting to use the extraordinarily susceptible minds of small children to increase their ranks.


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Pilot pulls off incredible landing to rescue injured skier on the French Alps

>A helicopter pilot has pulled off a precision landing to rescue an injured skier on the French Alps, with the aircraft's rotor blades spinning dramatically close to the mountainside.

According to Storyful, the rescue from the Pass of Anterne in Passy, France, was captured on video on January 2 by Nicolas Derely after the skier, a 19-year-old friend of Mr Derely's son named Emmanuel De Bellavoine, began to struggle because of a weak knee.


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These women survived domestic abuse, now they're sharpshooters protecting animals from poachers

Abused and disadvantaged women have become Zimbabwe's hidden weapon against poachers who kill elephants and rhinos for their tusks and horns. The Akashinga squad, or "The Brave Ones," is Zimbabwe's first all-female anti-poaching team that has quickly earned a top reputation as sharpshooters. They've arrested 80 armed poachers in the past year.

Petronella Chigumbura, the star sniper of the squad, wears a full camouflage suit for solo night patrols.

"When I wear this suit no one can see me, and I can hide from the poacher," Chigumbura told CBS News foreign correspondent Debora Patta in a report for "Down to Earth" by CBS News on Facebook Watch.


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Anti-Gamergate Usual Suspects Up To Old Tricks Again

It's not Christmas anymore, but the Ghost Of GamerGate past is returning to haunt us. History repeats itself, they say, and Zoë Quinn, the initial catalyst for the GamerGate movement is intent on proving just that. Quinn is the Helen of Troy for that warmup game that helped lead us to the present day Culture Wars that rages on today.


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Bill Gates warns that nobody is paying attention to gene editing, a new technology

Gene editing is one of the most promising new approaches to treating human diseases today.

It also raises "enormous" ethical questions, Bill Gates recently warned, and "could make inequity worse, especially if it is available only for wealthy people."

"I am surprised that these issues haven't generated more attention from the general public," he said in a December blog post, adding that "this might be the most important public debate we haven't been having widely enough."


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Nreal raises $15 million and shows off its 3-ounce mixed reality smart glasses

Nreal said it has raised $15 million and is unveiling its mixed reality (MR) smart glasses today at CES 2019, the big tech trade show in Las Vegas this week.

The company’s “ready-to-wear” mixed reality glasses are as lightweight as a pair of sunglasses and feature “stunning image quality,” said Chi Xu, CEO of Beijing-based Nreal, in an interview with VentureBeat.

Founded in January 2017, Nreal (which styles its name “nreal”) said it has created a consumer-focused design that favors comfort without sacrificing display quality. While competing products use a heavy goggle or helmet form factor with short battery lives, the Nreal Light weighs just 85 grams, or 3 ounces, only slightly heavier than a pair of sunglasses. They can be worn for hours at a time.

“We have a balance of good appearance and comfort,” said Xu.

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AMD Commences 2019 With Latest Ryzen Processors and GPUs

AMD commenced the year with another round of display of its latest Ryzen Processors and Radeon graphics cards at CES 2019. Notably, CES is an annual technology tradeshow conducted by the Consumer Technology Association every year in January in Las Vegas.

The company announced availability of the much-awaited second generation AMD Ryzen 3000 series mobile processors featuring 12nm technology for ultrathin laptops and notebooks from first-quarter 2019.

The company also announced that AMD Athlon 300 series mobile processors, which are developed on Zen 3 core architecture, will made available from early 2019.

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Lesbian couple to wed 26 times abroad to seek change in Japan

Two female university students plan to wed 26 times overseas to raise awareness of the fact that they cannot do the same thing in their home country.

Misato Kawasaki, 21, and Mayu Otaki, 22, juniors at the Department of International Cultural Studies of Utsunomiya University’s Faculty of International Studies, will hold wedding ceremonies in 26 countries and regions where same-sex marriages are legal.


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Fact Checking HuffPo's Misleading Russiagate Story

Another smoking bullet in the saga of Russiagate or another example of misleading journalism in action? You be the judge.


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U of Illinois police: Report ‘bias’ incidents

The University of Illinois Police encouraged students and community members to report “acts of intolerance” to the school’s Bias and Assessment Response team and let the police know if they “feel unsafe.”

“Acts of intolerance create an unsafe and unwelcoming environment for campus community members,” the University of Illinois police said on both its Facebook and Twitter accounts. “Remember that you can always report acts of intolerance to the Bias Assessment and Response Team at bart.illinois.edu. Please let us know if you feel unsafe. #ILLINOISsafety.”

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s bias response team defines bias-motivated instances as “actions or expressions that are motivated, at least in part, by prejudice against or hostility toward a person (or group) because of that person’s (or group’s) actual or perceived age, disability/ability status, ethnicity, gender, gender identity/expression, national origin, race, religion/spirituality, sexual orientation, socioeconomic class, etc.”

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Kavanaugh authors first majority opinion for Supreme Court

Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court’s newest justice, has authored his first majority opinion in an arbitration dispute case.

Kavanaugh, who replaced Justice Anthony Kennedy, was sworn in to the Supreme Court in October after a rancorous confirmation battle.

Typically, the newest justice’s first ruling is on a lower-profile appeal. The case is Henry Schein, Inc. v. Archer and White Sales, Inc.

Kavanaugh's eight-page opinion Tuesday resolves a narrow question in a dispute between two businesses in a soured relationship involving dental equipment.

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AMD and Nvidia Lead Biggest Two-Day Chip Stock Rally Since 2015

Advanced Micro Devices Inc. and Nvidia Corp. led semiconductor stocks higher on Monday, putting a benchmark index on track for its biggest two-day rally since 2015.

The Philadelphia semiconductor index gained 2.7 percent as the technology industry gears up for the CES conference in Las Vegas. That pushed the 30-member index’s gains above 7 percent since Friday and back into positive territory for the year.

Nvidia Corp. jumped as much as 6.4 percent after a presentation by Chief Executive Officer Jensen Huang in Las Vegas Sunday that focused on improvements to the company’s graphics processors for personal computers and teased automotive-related announcements later in the week. AMD, the best performer in the S&P 500 for 2018, gained as much as 8 percent. Lisa Su, the chipmaker’s chief executive, is scheduled to deliver a keynote address at CES on Wednesday morning.

Semiconductor stocks in 2018 – dogged by the U.S.-China trade war, waning end market demand and the memory chip slump – had their worst year since 2011 following two-consecutive years of better than 30 percent gains. Both AMD and Nvidia suffered from a collapse in cryptocurrency-related demand in the latter half of the year. The Philadelphia semiconductor index fell 7.8 percent in 2018.

Qualcomm Inc. is scheduled to hold a press conference at 3:00 p.m. ET, followed by Intel Corp. at 7:00 p.m. ET.



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Intel introduces a new project for laptops with 5G and AI

AI and 5G are currently the biggest buzzwords in the smartphone world, and now they’re making their way into the laptop space. Chipmaker Intel announced a program named “Project Athena” to encourage hardware makers to build laptops with AI and 5G capabilities, starting later this year.

The company describes the project as being “designed to enable new experiences and capitalize on next-generation technologies, including 5G and artificial intelligence.”

The project will outline specifications each year for introducing new features to consumers. The company will also work with partners to co-engineer components for upcoming laptops under the project, and certify Athena devices.

Apart from AI and 5G, the project will focus on shorter boot times, all-day battery life, and better performance for upcoming devices. Intel said that it’s targeting the ultrabook category, which includes laptops designed for portability as well as 2-in-1 touchscreen-based convertibles.

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CES 2019: Samsung adds rival Apple's iTunes to smart TVs

Samsung has said that from spring 2019 its new smart TVs will include iTunes - software made by rival tech firm Apple.

The move was "a true first", senior Samsung executive Dave Das told the CES tech show in Las Vegas.

The service will offer sales and rentals of films and TV shows but not music.

One analyst said the strategic move would benefit both companies. The deal comes ahead of Apple's expected launch of a rival to Netflix.

Besides access to iTunes, the smart TVs will also feature AirPlay 2 support - allowing users to stream videos, photos and music from Apple devices.

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T-Mobile ironically scorches AT&T for updating 4G phones with a fake 5G icon

LTE networks have become so expansive and reliable in the United States that it can be difficult to remember what life was like before 4G LTE. But try, if you will, to recall the ridiculousness that took place just prior to LTE’s proliferation. Wireless carriers in the US were so eager to beat each other to launching 4G LTE networks that they decided to “rebrand” older 3G HSPA+ technology as 4G. It was stupid and annoying, and it was tremendously confusing for consumers.

Well, we have some news for those of you who might not be old enough to have been around to enjoy it. You all get to relive it with us now, because the past is repeating itself. And once again, AT&T is leading the charge following its decision to mislead subscribers by slapping a silly new “5G” icon on 4G smartphones.

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Nintendo president on risk, innovation, and reducing business instability

Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa has suggested the company might one day move away from home console development as technology changes.

In a recent interview with Nikkei, the recently appointed president – who replaced Tatsumi Kimishima back in June 2018 – stressed that "flexibility is just as important as ingenuity" in the business world, and that Nintendo must be able to adapt as the games industry evolves.

Speaking more broadly, he explained the company will always strive to offer people around the world "innovative and unique ways to play games," but that might not always mean building hardware like the Nintendo Switch and Wii.

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AT&T accused of 'duping customers' for updating handsets to show 5G logos

AT&T is under fire for showing smartphone users the 5G logo on handsets- even though they are not connected to the much anticipated next generation network.

The cellular giant has updated three smartphones from Samsung and LG to show a '5G E' logo.

The firm has rebranded part of its existing LTE network as '5G Evolution' in a move many see as a way to mislead customers.

AT&T told FierceWireless that the '5G E' logo would initially come to 'a handful of devices, with more devices showing the indicator in spring 2019.'

It wasn't stated how many devices or which devices would show the icon, beyond it being 'the latest Android devices.'

'5G Evolution technologies enables a peak theoretical wireless speed of 400Mbps for capable devices, or an average around 40Mbps based on real-world experiences,' AT&T said.

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Microsoft-Owned GitHub Just Made It Free for Coders to Keep Projects Private in Small Teams

Microsoft-owned GitHub just gave coders the ability to create unlimited, free programming projects, according to a blog post by GitHub CEO Nat Friedman. The service, acquired for $7.5 billion 2018 by Microsoft, formerly required a subscription for software developers to manage repositories of programming code that weren’t public shared, as with open-source projects.

The change allows coders to create an unlimited number of private projects with up to three participants at no cost. This move serves a dual purpose: It allows the Microsoft division to appear more generous to programmers, especially individuals and small teams, by eliminating a $7 a month fee. But it’s also a competitive loss leader, reducing an incentive for coders to pay for similar service elsewhere.

Although GitHub doesn’t lock in coders to remain on its service, the more that people become familiar with a fairly generous free offering, the more likely they are through inertia to upgrade in place as their needs grow.

GitHub relies on an industry-standard protocol that allows programmers to store copies of work in progress in a structure central repository that tracks changes for comparison and to revert back to if problems emerge. Over 31 million developers have used GitHub to create 100 million repositories, each of them a discrete project.



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HTC’s newest VR headsets: Vive Pro Eye for PC, Vive Cosmos for untethered VR

HTC kicked off its CES 2019 presence with two significant product reveals: the HTC Vive Pro Eye (which is a new virtual reality headset for PCs) and the HTC Cosmos (which is an untethered VR headset that will work with smartphones or PCs).

While specs and price for the Vive Pro Eye headset are currently unknown, its biggest upgrade is a rarity in the PC VR space: built-in eye tracking, so that a users' eye direction and movement can be measured for the sake of better VR performance. To that aim, HTC used its CES press conference on Monday to confirm that the headset will ship with foveated rendering support, meaning that a VR game or app can render fewer pixels in the parts of the VR display that aren't being looked at by a user. This implies (but doesn't confirm) that HTC will make tools available for developers to marry the Vive Pro Eye's eye-tracking sensors with 3D-rendering engines.

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Nvidia is surging after unveiling new chips targeting cost-sensitive laptop gamers

Nvidia was up 5.26% to $143.35 a share Monday after the company unveiled a cost-sensitive gaming chip that can bring its new graphics technology to laptops


At a Las Vegas event on Sunday evening, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang unveiled the GeForce RTX 2060, a gaming graphics processing unit based on the company's recently-launched Turing architecture. Like Nvidia's previous Turing gaming GPUs, the RTX 2060 also supports new features that can improve the gaming experience, such as real-time ray tracing, a rendering technology that allows for more cinematic and realistic visuals, and Deep Learning Super Sampling, a technology that helps to improve image quality.

But the RTX 2060's $349 retail starting price is relatively surprising, compared to the company's previous three Turing graphics cards, the RTX 2080 Ti, 2080, and 2070, which sport starting prices of $999, $699 and $499, respectively.

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A rollable TV? LG's latest OLED TV television packs a futuristic 'wow' factor

Televisions have long been a staple at CES. LG's latest OLED TV, however, takes the traditional TV experience and flips it. Or rather, rolls it.

The company's new television, called the Signature OLED TV R (or model 65R9 for short), is due later this year. It takes LG's already excellent OLED display technology and builds on it. The result, a screen that doesn't just live in your room but one that pops up from its base when you want it and rolls back up when you don't.

Bigger screens, sharper displays, fancier technologies are all near guarantees at the annual technology industry event. And to be sure, there are plenty of bigger and sharper screens this year, too. But most years these are iterations on previous television designs, not something brand new..

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Lara Trump: Pelosi's Jab About Pres. Trump Working With Women Is 'True Identity Politics'

Trump 2020 campaign adviser Lara Trump said Saturday that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's remarks about how the president works with women are "ridiculous."

Pelosi (D-Calif.) said in an interview with NBC that she hopes President Trump "recognizes that a new day has dawned in America."

"I don't know if he knows how to deal with women in power and women with strength," she said. "But we'll see."

Ms. Trump, who spearheaded the Trump-Pence Women’s Empowerment Tour and is married to the president's son Eric, said on "Fox & Friends" that Pelosi's comments represent "true identity politics."

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South Korea bans single-use plastic bags

>Supermarkets required to offer alternatives such as paper or cloth bags

South Korea has banned all single-use plastic bags in its major supermarkets.

Stores will instead be required to offer alternatives such as paper or cloth bags which can be recycled.

The law came into effect on Tuesday with the intention of preserving natural resources and helping to manage recyclable waste, South Korea's environment ministry said.

It will affect 2,000 major supermarkets and 11,000 supermarkets with a sales floor space greater than of 165 sq m. Bakeries will also be barred from handing out plastic bags.


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Female Overwatch Contenders player Ellie confirmed she wasn’t actually the one playing

Cloud9 streamer Becca 'Aspen' Rukavina claimed on stream that Ellie, the Overwatch player at the center of a huge controversy this week after she walked away from a spot on a Contenders team due to harassment, might not be a real person.

To make a very long story short, Ellie came out of nowhere with a new Overwatch account and soon climbed through the competitive ranks enough to catch the attention of Contenders teams.

Shortly after joining the Contenders team Second Wind, the player stepped down after intense scrutiny on their true identity, something some said wouldn't have happened if Ellie wasn't a female.

Esports insider Rod Breslau wrote on Twitter that "Ellie has said in private messages to teammates in the last hour confirming she has not been the one playing."

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British Jews look to Germany for Brexit ‘insurance policy’

>The German constitution allows for people whose citizenship was revoked for ‘political, racist, or religious reasons’ to have it reinstated.

Sally Geppert, a legal secretary from Cologne, was 27 when she arrived in the U.K. on the last day of August 1939 — one of tens of thousands of German Jews who fled the Nazis and found refuge in Britain.

The next day, September 1, Germany invaded Poland, war broke out and emigration to Britain from Nazi-controlled countries was blocked. Geppert, who married a Briton and went on to become a bookkeeper, was the only member of her immediate family to escape: Her father, mother and brother were murdered in Nazi death camps.


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Jeff Gordon Is Auctioning His Personal Corvette Z06 for Charity

NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon will be selling his personal 2016 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 later this month through Barrett-Jackson to benefit his charity, the Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation. The car, a C7.R special edition model, is optioned with the eight-speed automatic and has just 747 miles on the odometer. It's the best way to fulfill your dreams of driving a car Jeff Gordon drove, while also helping a good cause.

The C7.R special edition comes standard with the Z06's Z07 track package, which is normally an optional extra. That gets you a bigger splitter, a more aggressive adjustable rear wing, Brembo carbon ceramic brakes, and Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires. Additionally, C7.R cars get black wheels with yellow accents, carbon fiber hood trim, yellow-painted brake calipers, bespoke graphics, and a unique interior trim. The car could be ordered in either yellow or black, and according to the VIN sequence, this car is number 23 out of the 500 built.

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After years of Trump's dire warnings, a 'crisis' has hit border but generates little urgency

In 2015, the year President Donald Trump launched his White House bid with a promise to build a wall on the Mexico border, illegal migration to the United States plunged 31 percent, falling near its lowest level in 50 years.

Security experts saw a success, but Trump looked at the border and saw something ominous: "rapists," "criminals" and other predators lurking on the other side.

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Google's Next-Gen Fuchsia OS Confirmed To Run Android Apps

Over the past few years, there has been a trickle of information leaking out regarding Fuchsia, which is the rumored successor to Google’s Android and potentially Chrome OS operating systems. When we last visited Fuchsia, it had made its way to the Android Runtime branch, which fueled hopes that it would include native support for Android apps.

This week, however, 9to5Google has uncovered changes within the Android Open Source Project (ASOP) that leads the publication to believe that native Android compatibility will indeed be baked in from the start. Not only was the Fuchsia SDK detailed, which is used to build native Fuchsia apps, but also an Android emulator.

The emulator would give Fuchsia users the ability to run their legacy apps in the new operating system environment. Emulation isn't exactly ideal, but given the complete dominance of Android in the operating system space these days and the proliferation of Android apps, having this backwards compatibility is an obvious and highly beneficial move on Google's part. Making the transition from Android to Fuchsia needs to be as seamless as possible for consumers, and this is definitely a step in the right direction – at least until Android developers can start cranking out reliable native Fuchsia apps.

"Fuchsia will use a specially designed version of the Android Runtime (“ART” above) to run Android applications," writes 9to5Google. "This version of ART will be installable on any Fuchsia device using a .far file, Fuchsia’s equivalent of Android’s APK."

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Google's new SMS and call permission policy is crippling apps used by millions

Late last year, Google decided it was time to crack down on apps requesting SMS and call log permissions. Ostensibly, exceptions would be granted for categories including backups and automation, but as of now, there are still gaps which cover legitimate use cases. While some popular apps like Tasker have successfully secured exemptions, others like Cerberus have not. Instead, they've decided to strip out those permissions or risk facing the wrath of Google's upcoming January 9th banhammer, killing associated functionality and disappointing millions of long-time users to adhere to the Play Store's new policy.

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Judge Dismisses San Bernardino Shooting Lawsuit Against Facebook, Google, Twitter

A federal judge in San Francisco has dismissed a lawsuit filed by family members and victims of the 2015 mass shooting in San Bernardino, Calif., that accused Facebook, Google and Twitter of knowingly supporting ISIS and helping the group spread its radical beliefs.

Fourteen people died and 22 were injured when Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik opened fire at a holiday office party on Dec. 2, 2015.

ISIS claimed responsibility even though it apparently had no direct contact with the attackers. On the day of the massacre, Malik took to Facebook to pledge allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.


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Oculus Rift Sells Out At Amazon, ‘Strong Demand Over The Holidays’

Amazon in the United States doesn’t look like it’ll have Oculus Rift in stock for a couple weeks, the website states, with a representative of Facebook’s Oculus telling us they are working now on “replenishing inventory across channels.”

Facebook’s Oculus Rift “saw strong demand over the holidays,” according to the company, though the headset is still currently “in stock on Oculus.com and Best Buy, among other retailers.” We’ve seen empty shelves too at Best Buy and slow shipping reported at other stores. We note also the gap in usage on Steam between Rift and Vive grew in December, with more people using Rift for Steam content than Vive and Vive Pro combined.

We initially saw reports of limited stock for Oculus Rift on Amazon in the United States and England — eyebrow-raising timing given a report of “Rift S” in the works from Facebook and the largest consumer electronics show (CES) of the year being held in Vegas next week. So we reached out to Facebook and confirmed the company is still planning to resupply stores with original Rifts for people to buy.

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Twitch Appears to Unban Man Facing Charges in On-Stream Assault

A Twitch user who faces charges for allegedly assaulting his pregnant partner in December while streaming “Fortnite” has been unbanned from the site, according to a tweet by Rod Breslau, an esports consultant and analyst, who spotted the man’s first stream after returning to the service.

Twitch, the leading video game streaming website, originally banned the user, mrdeadmoth, after a clip of an altercation between the Australian man and his partner went viral.

In the clip, the accused, identified as Luke Munday by 7 News Sydney, gets into a short verbal argument with his partner, who is off-screen. He then gets up and a distinct slap sound can be heard, followed by the sound of her and what sounds like a young child crying. Munday’s Twitch account was banned, as well as his Twitter, according to Newsweek.

After the incident, Munday was taken to court on an assault charge and suspended from his position with Telstra, according to 7 News Sydney. The news source also noted that police filed an apprehended violence application (AVO) on Munday, which is the equivalent of a restraining order, in order to protect Munday’s partner.

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Half-Life and Portal writer Erik Wolpaw returns to Valve

Half-Life 2 and Portal co-writer Erik Wolpaw has reportedly returned to Valve, according an email from Gabe Newell leaked on social media.

Wolpaw left the company in February 2017, joining fellow Half-Life writer Marc Laidlaw who departed a year prior, and followed shortly afterwards by Chet Felizak.

However, the leaked email from Newell simply states "He's back" in response to an email with the subject "Erik Wolpaw back at Valve?"

While Wolpaw does not feature as an employee on the website for Valve Software, his name does appear in the credits for the developer's recently released digital card came Artifact

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D-Link debuts a 5G Wi-Fi router with 40 times wired broadband speeds

If you can imagine getting home cable broadband service without either cables or the standard cable modem, that’s the promise of D-Link’s new “5G Enhanced Gateway,” DWR-2010. With nothing more than wall power and a SIM card, the router promises to create a high-speed Wi-Fi network in your home — albeit with a couple of non-trivial caveats.

Built with Qualcomm’s SDX55 chipset, the 5G Enhanced Gateway is capable of transmitting standards-compliant 5G data through either millimeter wave or sub-6GHz towers, the former currently available in a handful of U.S. cities and the latter planned for wider deployment in 2019 and 2020. Four of its antennas pick up 5G signals, falling back to LTE when 5G’s not available, and the unit also supports voice over LTE (VoLTE) for traditional phone calling.

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Report: Huawei punishes employees behind embarrassing iPhone tweet

When you tweet, your tweet will often be marked with details about the specific client software and computing device used to create the tweet. And this can be a source of major embarrassment for people who do social media work for smartphone manufacturers.

In the final minutes of 2018, the official @Huawei account wished everyone happy New Year. It was a nice enough sentiment, but people quickly noticed that it was posted using an iPhone—which is awkward when the whole purpose of the account is to promote Huawei's phones.

Huawei deleted the tweet, but not before people captured screenshots of it.

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Samsung Galaxy S10 leak seems to reveal battery sizes

The Samsung Galaxy S10 is perhaps the most heavily leaked phone around at the moment but one thing we haven’t heard until now is how big its battery will be. A new leak changes that though, as a photo of cases seemingly designed for the S10 range also includes text which seems to correspond to battery sizes.

The image, shared by reputable Samsung leaker @UniverseIce, shows three different cases, one for a 6.4-inch phone (likely the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus), one for a 6.1-inch handset (probably the standard Galaxy S10), and one for a 5.8-inch device (possibly the Samsung Galaxy S10 Lite).

The S10 Plus case has 4,000 written on it, while the Galaxy S10 case says 3,500 and the Galaxy S10 Lite case reads 3,100. Those numbers could well be battery capacities, though without the ‘mAh’ on the end we can’t be certain.

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You Can Finally Order the Vuzix Blade Smart Glasses for $1,000

Plenty of companies have had ambitions to put a computer on your face, but few have managed to produce a workable prototype. Even fewer have sold them to consumers. Vuzix, which has been making enterprise-focused augmented reality glasses for years, has finally launched a consumer version called the Vizix Blade. They mostly look like regular glasses, but the lenses include a smart heads-up display powered by Vuzix’s custom software and Amazon Alexa.

Vuzix demoed the Blade augmented reality (AR) glasses at CES last year, and the final product is on sale just in time for this year’s show. However, you’re just pre-ordering the glasses. For $1,000, you can secure a pair of glasses for delivery in 4-6 weeks. You get access to the Blade Developer Center immediately. That includes support forums and documentation to make apps. Vuzix seems to expect aspiring developers to be the primary audience for this first run, but anyone can buy and use the Blade smart glasses.

The Blade smart glasses look like a standard pair of sunglasses at first glance, but the longer you look, the more apparent it becomes these are something more. The frame is a bit on the chunky side, and the temples are extremely tall to accommodate the electronics and batteries. You might also notice the small optical projector and camera peeking out at the edge of the lens.

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Hitman HD Enhanced Collection is a 4K update for the most loved and most hated Hitman games

If you felt like Hitman 2 didn't change enough from its predecessor, developer IO Interactive's Hitman HD Enhanced Collection will - for better or worse - remind you of a different time. The new title for PS4 and Xbox One includes updated versions of Hitman: Blood Money and Hitman: Absolution, featuring refined 4K-ready visuals, better performance, and updated control schemes. It's coming on January 11.

Hitman: Blood Money was the fourth Hitman game in six years when it arrived in 2006. The fourth time was the charm: Blood Money fulfilled the series' potential by embracing its 'murder puzzle box' philosophy, intricately designed levels and infiltration mechanics allowing players to set up subtly engineered "accidental" deaths or chart their own path through sprees of violence and cover-ups of cover-ups. Both Hitman (2016) and Hitman 2 (2018) followed Blood Money's example.

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GE Lighting new smart bulbs get Google Home support to take on Hue

Your smart lighting options are about to get a lot brighter, with GE Lighting adding a new range of full color connected LED bulbs along with connected switches and Google Home integration to its range. The C by GE collection is ramping up to take on Philips Hue on its own turf, with the new products making their debut at CES 2019.

Probably most interesting are the Full Color LED bulbs which GE Lighting is launching. There’ll be three different options, including an A19 which is a 60 watt equivalent, a BR30 for recessed lighting installations, and a custom-sized light strip.

Each will offer both millions of color variations together with tunable white light. They’ll connect with your smart home via Bluetooth, and courtesy of Made for Google certification there’s integration with Google Home, Google Home Mini, Google Max, and the newest Google Home Hub, all without a separate GE Lighting hub.

That will allow you to use your smartphone or the Google Assistant – whether on your phone, on a smart speaker, or a smart display – to control the lights. However, GE Lighting is also launching a new range of C by GE Smart Switches as well.

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Apple Phishing Scams Growing More Advanced, With Latest Spoofing Apple Phone Numbers

Phishing scams attempting to get info out of Apple users are nothing new, but scammers are growing more clever and scams are getting harder to distinguish from actual Apple communication.

On his Krebs on Security site, security researcher Brian Krebs today outlined one of the latest phishing scams he's seen, where an incoming phone call appears to be from a legitimate Apple support line.

As described by Krebs, Jody Westby, CEO of security consulting firm Global Cyber Risk, received an automated call on her iPhone warning her that services containing Apple user IDs had been compromised.

The message asked her to call a 1-866 number, and in the Phone app, the call looked like a call from Apple, with the number listed as 1(800)MYAPPLE, the name listed as Apple Inc., and with Apple's Infinite Loop website.

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Not a baby factory: South Korea tries to fix demographic crisis with more gender equality

>In just over a decade, South Korea has spent the equivalent of a small European economy trying to fix its demographic crisis, yet birthrates have dropped to the lowest in the world.

This year, President Moon Jae-In, who describes himself as a feminist president, is testing a new angle: showing women more respect.

At the end of last year, South Korea announced plans to remove some of the disincentives for employing women, allowing both parents to take parental leave at the same time and extending paid paternal leave. Employers also get incentives to allow either parent to work fewer hours.


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Trump posts new 'Game of Thrones'-themed meme about border wall

President Trump unveiled a new "Game of Thrones"-inspired meme on his official Instagram page Thursday, this time in support of his plan for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

The picture features the president's face superimposed over an artist's rendering of the metal slat fencing that the Department of Homeland Security has considered for installation along the border if Congress approves funding for the president's border security proposal.


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Rashida Tlaib wears traditional Palestinian dress to take oath

Michigan Democrat Rashida Tlaib has been sworn into office while wearing a traditional garment stitched by her Palestinian-born mother.

Ms Tlaib had been expected to take her oath on a Koran owned by Thomas Jefferson, but changed her mind, according to the Detroit Free Press.

Ms Tlaib and Minnesota's Ilhan Omar became the first-ever Muslim female members of Congress on Thursday.

Native-American Deb Haaland also wore traditional dress for the ceremony.


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Colombia coca production: US 'deeply concerned' by rise

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says he is "deeply concerned" about the increased production of coca leaf, the raw material for cocaine, in Colombia.

At a meeting with Colombian President Ivan Duque, Mr Pompeo said the two countries would try to reduce coca production by 50% by 2023.

Colombia has already vowed to step up its coca eradication programme.

A recent UN report said the amount of agricultural land used for coca crops in Colombia had hit record levels.

The country has fought for years to tackle cocaine production, with the US providing about $400m (£318m) annually to help combat the producers and traffickers.


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British Army targets 'snowflakes, binge gamers and me, me, me millennials' in new recruitment drive

A new Army recruitment campaign seeks to target gamers and millennials stuck in 'boring jobs'. In the new series of adverts the Army hopes to show how current 16 to 25-year-olds may already have many of the attributes needed in the modern military, but either dismiss them as irrelevant or see them as embarrassing.

The new recruitment advertising campaign, titled ‘Your Army Needs You’, launches on January 3 with a series of adverts on TV and the internet as well as billboard posters.

The three adverts tell the stories of individuals whose perceived weaknesses are seen as strengths by the Army.


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Ireland introduces legal abortion services

>As of Tuesday, it is again legal for women in Ireland to seek to terminate their pregnancies following last year's referendum.

Ireland has introduced its first abortion services today following a 2018 referendum decision to liberalise the country's ban on terminating pregnancies.

Laws were quickly passed following the referendum to ensure that as of midnight on Tuesday, the country's national health service was able to offer terminations free of charge.


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Pope Francis: US sex abuse scandal undermines Church's credibility

Pope Francis has said the credibility of the Catholic Church in the US has been severely damaged by the ongoing child sexual abuse scandal there.

Efforts to cover up the crimes had caused even greater harm, he said in a letter delivered to US bishops attending a retreat in Chicago.

He urged the bishops to end internal bickering and show unity as they tried to tackle the crisis.

The Pope's comments on child abuse have grown stronger over time.

In an extensive letter released by the Vatican, the Pope says the "hurt caused" has generated "division and dispersion" within the ranks of US bishops.


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Can Blockchain Save Anonymity And Free Speech Online?

According to Freedom House, Internet freedom in 2017 dropped for the seventh year in a row. Government-sponsored censorship, web scraping,…


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Japan to start collecting ¥1,000 departure tax from Monday

The Japanese government will begin collecting a departure tax on Monday, under legislation enacted by the Diet last April. All travelers leaving Japan by plane or ship must pay 1,000 yen each. Children under the age of 2 and transit passengers will be exempt.

Revenue collected from the new levy will be allocated to improving infrastructure and services to handle the projected increase in the number of visitors to Japan toward and beyond the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.


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The problem with EU’s new medical device rules

>Many devices won’t adhere to the tighter regulations for 5 years longer than intended.

The EU’s rush to clamp down on faulty medical devices is backfiring.

With global regulators accused of failing to protect millions of patients from poorly tested medical implants by the “Implant Files” investigations by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, the EU is pointing to sweeping laws already adopted to show it’s on the case.


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Troops To Be Deployed To Border To Build And Upgrade 160 Miles Of Fencing

More troops are expected to be deployed to the Southern border to construct or upgrade 160 miles of fencing and provide medical care to a steady stream of migrant families arriving from Central America, according to military sources.

The deployment and fence construction along the California and Arizona borders would be paid for by the Pentagon, from the Department of Defense's discretionary funding.


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Cleveland Clinic fires resident after online threat to give Jews 'wrong meds' surfaces

A Cleveland hospital has fired a resident after anti-Semitic comments and threats to give the Jewish people “the wrong meds” surfaced on social media.

Lara Kollab was identified as the fired employee behind the comments. She worked as a supervised resident at the Cleveland Clinic from July to September, Cleveland.com reported.

“This individual was employed as a supervised, first-year resident at our hospital from July to September 2018," the Cleveland Clinic said in a statement to Fox News.


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Two held over English Channel migrant crossings

Two men have been arrested on suspicion of arranging the "illegal movement of migrants" across the English Channel during December.

The pair - an Iranian and a Briton - were arrested in Manchester.

More than 230 people have reached the UK in small boats since November.

The UK is due to redeploy two Border Force patrol boats to the Channel from the Mediterranean, where they have been helping with the thousands of people who have tried to cross to Europe.


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Brazil’s new president removes LGBT concerns from human rights ministry

Brazil’s new right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro removed concerns regarding the LGBT community from being considered by a new human rights ministry hours after his inauguration, part of a sweeping set of executive orders targeting some minority groups.

Bolsonaro stripped LGBT concerns from the ministry and named no other federal agency to consider such issues, The Associated Press reported Wednesday.

The former military officer and right-wing politician made incendiary comments about race and sexual orientation during his campaign, saying in 2011 that he would be “incapable of loving a homosexual son.”


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Google has received approval from US regulators to deploy a futuristic technology that allows smart devices to be controlled by hand gestures alone.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved Project Soli, which was first announced by Google four years ago, saying that it would "serve the public interest" to push forward with development of the technology.

The interactive control system uses radar-based motion sensors to detect and track hand movements with millimetre accuracy.


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Cyber researcher pulls public talk on hacking Apple's Face ID

A cyber security researcher canceled a hacking conference briefing on how he said he could crack biometric facial recognition on Apple Inc (AAPL.O) iPhones, at the request of his employer, which called the work “misleading.”

The prospect that Face ID could be defeated is troubling because it is used to lock down functions on tens of millions of iPhones from banking and healthcare apps to emails, text messages and photos.

There is a one in 1 million chance a random person could unlock a Face ID, versus one in 50,000 chance that would happen with the iPhone’s fingerprint sensor, according to Apple.


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Thailand's rebel female Buddhist monks defy tradition

Boodsabann Chanthawong recently joined a growing number of women defying generations of Thai Buddhist tradition by becoming ordained as novice monks at an unrecognized all-female monastery outside Bangkok.

Leading a procession of 21 other women - from teenagers to senior citizens - to a chapel in the Songdhammakalyani monastery in Nakhon Pathom province, Boodsabann teared up as she prepared to exchange her white garments for the distinctive saffron robes otherwise seen almost exclusively on male monks.


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Isis supporter plotted to kill 100 people in Oxford Street terror attack while going through Prevent

>Former Royal Mail worker scouted potential targets in London on same day as meeting anti-extremism officers, court hears

A Muslim convert who swore allegiance to Isis planned to kill 100 people in a terror attack in London while taking part in a deradicalisation programme, a court has heard.

Lewis Ludlow of Rochester, Kent, scouted potential sites for an attack on the same day as meeting with Prevent officers, London's Old Bailey was told.

The former Royal Mail worker said he was filled with “animosity and hatred” for the British public, carried out reconnaissance of targets around the capital, taking photographs of Oxford Street and Madame Tussauds, the court heard.


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Death Note: Netflix under fire over Belgium train crash images

Netflix has come under fire for images used in the film Death Note said to be taken from a deadly train crash in Belgium in 2010, local media report.

A scene in the film, a horror inspired by a Japanese manga series, reportedly uses shots of a crash involving two passenger trains that killed 19 people.

A Belgian railway spokesman said it showed "little respect" to the victims.

Netflix is yet to comment on the reports. It is not clear if filmmakers had permission to use the images.


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An ex-Apple engineer created brilliant new iPhone software that would make Apple jealous

To ring in the new year, former Apple engineer Bob Burrough uploaded a new video to his fledgling YouTube channel to show off a new idea he has for a smartphone interface.

Burrough's "Project Erasmus" is a user-interface (UI) implementation that uses the lighting in your immediate environment to light, shade, and reflect on the software elements in the device. The result is an incredible, immersive visual effect that would make you want to use your phone even more (as if that's possible).


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Switch off their screens an hour before bedtime, child health experts tell parents

>Not enough evidence of screen harms to recommend UK-wide time limits for kids says Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, but sleep disruption significant

Children should switch off screens an hour before bedtime according to the first expert UK guidance aimed at helping parents prevent smartphones and console use becoming harmful.

The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) review of screen time harms found evidence of links between increased use and sleep disruption, obesity and mental health issues like anxiety and loneliness.


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Jamal Khashoggi murder trial opens in Saudi Arabia

The trial of 11 individuals over the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi has begun in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, state media report.

Prosecutors have asked for the death penalty for five of the defendants.

Khashoggi, a prominent US-based critic of the Saudi government, was killed after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, on 2 October.

Prosecutors say he was murdered in a "rogue" operation by agents sent to persuade him to return to the kingdom.


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Uber loses court battle over arbitration clause, opening door to driver class action

>Appeals court rules Uber Technologies’ driver services agreement 'unconscionable' and 'invalid'

Ontario’s top court has ruled that Uber drivers can turn to Canadian courts to try to resolve disputes with the ride-hailing service, paving the way for those drivers to move forward with a class-action lawsuit seeking to classify themselves as employees.

In a ruling released Wednesday, the Court of Appeal for Ontario concluded that an arbitration clause in Uber Technologies Inc.’s driver services agreement that forced drivers to resolve conflict overseas was “unconscionable” and “invalid.”


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Niger troops kill more than 280 Boko Haram fighters: government

Troops and air strikes have killed more than 280 Boko Haram militants since the Niger government started an operation against the group last week, the defense ministry said.

Boko Haram has attacked Niger, Chad and Cameroon from its base in northeast Nigeria, where it has been fighting for more than nine years to carve out an Islamist caliphate.


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Maggi ban: Nestle admits presence of lead in popular noodles brand during SC hearing

>The company's advocate said that tests reports conducted by CFTRI, Mysuru lab had been submitted and it found that lead content in Maggi noodles but was well within the limit.

Nestle has accepted before the Supreme Court today that its popular FMCG product of noodles - Maggi - has lead in it. The company admitted the presence of toxic ingredients in its noodles during a court hearing on Thursday. However, it has argued that the lead was within the permissible limit.

The apex court was given this admittance by Nestle's lawyers as the case was being heard. The company's advocate said that tests reports conducted by CFTRI (Central Food Technological Research Institute), Mysuru lab had been submitted and it found that lead content in Maggi noodles but was well within the limit. However, the bench questioned the senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, who appeared for Nestle India, "Why should we be eating Maggi with lead in it?"


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The US government is warning Americans that if they visit China they may not be able to return home

The US State Department has issued a travel advisory urging Americans to "exercise increased caution" when traveling to the People's Republic of China.

The State's elevated travel advisory is out of concern that China may arbitrarily enforce local laws and detain US citizens without cause.

The advisory also indicates that US-Chinese citizens or Americans of Chinese heritage are especially vulnerable to "additional scrutiny and harassment."


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The video games sector now accounts for more than half of the entertainment market, according to new figures.

The Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA) said the gaming market's value rose to £3.864bn, more than double what it was worth in 2007.

It now makes gaming a larger market than video and music combined for the first time.

The figures show three games - Fifa 19, Red Dead Redemption 2 and Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 - each sold more than one million physical units in the UK across games consoles during 2018.


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Serial killer known as China's 'Jack the Ripper' executed

A man who earned the nickname of China's "Jack the Ripper" for the slayings of 11 victims was executed Thursday, according to reports.

Gao Chengyong, 54, was sentenced to death in March during a court appearance in Baiyin, China, for robbery, rape, murder, and defiling the dead, according to the South China Morning Post.

Gao was charged for the murders of 11 women and girls between 1998 and 2002, reports AFP. Gao targeted young women wearing red and followed them home, sometimes mutilating his victims, said the report.


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Pre-Aztec 'Flayed god' temple uncovered in Mexico

Archaeologists in Mexico say they have made an important discovery, uncovering a temple to Xipe Tótec - the pre-Hispanic "Flayed lord".

Historically, throughout the region, priests paid tribute to the deity by wearing the skin of human sacrifices.

Items relating to the deity were discovered at a site in Puebla state, and believed to date from 900-1150 AD.

Mexican archaeologists say the find may be the earliest dedication to Xipe Tótec discovered in Mexico.

Worship of the God, who represents fertility and regeneration, is known to have later spread throughout Mesoamerica during Aztec times.


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Perth man admits he 'freaked out' after attempt to kill a spider triggered a full police response

>A Perth man has been left red-faced after his angry interaction with a household spider prompted a full emergency police callout to his suburban house.

Police received a panicked call from a passer-by and attended a home in the northern suburb of Edgewater yesterday to investigate reports of a man yelling "Why don't you die?" loudly and repeatedly while a child was crying inside.

Admitting the commotion came from him, Rhys Howard confessed he had a fear of spiders and his partner usually killed them.


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Honduras Plans To Open Embassy In Jerusalem

>Honduras will begin talks with Israel on talks with the United States to open an embassy in Jerusalem, the three countries said on Tuesday, a move aimed at strengthening the political ties between Honduras and Israel.

The announcement came a little over a year after US President Donald Trump upset the line his predecessors had been following for decades, saying the United States recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Donald Trump’s initiative, which provoked strong criticism from the international community, was then supported by Guatemala and Honduras, two Central American countries receiving substantial American aid.

In the wake of Donald Trump’s announcement, Guatemala had also declared that it would move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.


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Google to charge Chinese manufacturers like Xiaomi, Huawei, ZTE for Android apps in Q3

>Google has never charged for Android and its apps because of the revenue it gets through Google Chrome and Google Search.

Google has now revealed its plans to charge Chinese manufacturers for the Android apps. In a tweet from official Android account (spotted by Slashleaks), the company has noted that it “plan to charge Chinese manufacturers in the third quarter of 2019.”


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British MPs call for access to detained women activists ‘tortured and sexually assaulted’

>Rights groups say activists have been denied access to lawyers

A group of British MPs and lawyers is calling for access to women’s rights activists detained in Saudi Arabia, following allegations that they have been subjected to torture and sexual assault in prison.

More than a dozen were imprisoned in a crackdown by authorities in May last year, just ahead of the country’s ban on women driving being lifted. Many of them were prominent in the campaign to remove the ban.


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National Firearms Association tells long-gun owners to delay registering weapon

>Montreal Polytechnique shooting survivor hopes government issues fines as soon as deadline passes

The deadline to register long guns in Quebec is fast approaching, but the National Firearm Association is encouraging members to wait until the last minute to comply, as a form of protest.

The province's long-gun registry will go into effect Jan. 29, on the two-year anniversary of the Quebec City mosque shooting.

Guy Lavergne, a lawyer who represents the NFA, told CBC's Quebec AM that many gun owners in the province are not happy with the new rules.


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Bob Einstein: Curb Your Enthusiasm actor and comedy writer dies

Veteran comedy writer and actor Bob Einstein has died aged 76, his brother confirmed on Twitter.

Albert Brooks, who is also a comedian, paid tribute to "a great brother, father and husband" and "brilliantly funny man".

"You will be missed forever," he said.

Einstein was most famous for the role of Marty Funkhouser in the HBO satirical comedy Curb Your Enthusiasm, which he played from 2004 to 2017.

He won fans portraying Larry Middleman in the third season of Arrested Development, and in Hollywood heist caper Ocean's Thirteen, where he played Matt Damon's con artist father.


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Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe to go on hunger strike in Iran prison over lack of medical care

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, the British-Iranian charity worker in prison in Tehran on espionage charges, is to go on a hunger strike in protest at the “inhuman” denial of medical care.

Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe, writing from Evin prison, said she intends to go on a three-day hunger strike later this month alongside prominent human rights activist Narges Mohammadi to demand access to a doctor.

In a letter published by Tehran-based charity Defenders of Human Rights Centre, Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe said both women were banned from receiving medical treatment despite “frequent requests”.


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Robocalls and spam texts deliver fake news silently, at scale, but are impossible to study

unless carriers like AT&T open up to researchers and improve their networks. While the FCC is applying pressure in this regard, any decent solution is likely years away. Fake robocalls and texts are a crisis.

First let’s establish the scope of disinformation campaigns in the US to date.

Fake news dominated the US during the 2016 presidential election. Facebook’s top 20 fake news stories in the final three months of the election got more views and engagement than the top 20 stories from real outlets.


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Sajid Javid asks for Royal Navy vessel to deter migrant Channel crossings

>The request from the home secretary signals a further escalation of the UK's response and comes as two people are arrested.

The request from the home secretary signals a further escalation of the UK's response and comes as two people are arrested.


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#ShutdownStories: The impact of the government shutdown

The partial US government shutdown has entered the new year as President Donald Trump's border wall standoff with Congress remains unresolved. With federal closures now on day 12, around 800,000 employees are feeling the impacts of no funding and no pay.

On Wednesday, Mr Trump insisted he would keep the government closed for "as long as it takes" to fund the border wall as he met top Democrats and Republicans at the White House.

But the shutdown showed little signs of ending after lawmakers said they would return to the White House on Friday to continue negotiations.


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Stabbings at Sydney Scientology centre leave one man dead

>A man who was fatally stabbed in the neck at the Church of Scientology headquarters in Sydney has been described as a "beloved member" of the Church.

A 16-year-old boy was arrested after allegedly stabbing two men, killing one, at the organisation's headquarters in Chatswood, shortly after midday.


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Anak Krakatau volcano: Satellites get clear view of collapse

There is now some very good optical satellite imagery of the collapsed Anak Krakatau volcano, which generated the devastating tsunami on 22 December.

Poor weather conditions over Indonesia's Sunda Strait had frustrated spacecraft that view the Earth in the same type of light as our eyes.

But the team at Planet has managed to find windows in the cloud.

Pictures from its Dove and SkySat platforms show the extent of the volcanic cone's failure.

It is easier to appreciate now how the island has been reshaped.

What was once a crater at the summit of a 340m-high edifice has been completely broken open to form a small bay.


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Abby Sunderland: Yacht abandoned in 2010 record attempt found

Almost nine years after being abandoned in the Indian Ocean, a yacht belonging to a teenage round-the-world sailor has turned up off southern Australia.

US girl Abby Sunderland was aged 16 in 2010 when she attempted to become the youngest person to circumnavigate the globe, but a storm crippled her vessel.

She was rescued more than 3,220km (2,000 miles) from the coasts of both Africa and Australia.

The yacht was spotted on Monday, upturned and covered in barnacles.


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Sydney stabbing: Teenager arrested after man killed at Scientology complex in Australia

>Boy questioned by police over attack at £32m church headquarters following ‘domestic incident’

A 16-year-old boy has been arrested after a man was stabbed to death at a Scientology centre in Australia.

Police said a 24-year-old man was knifed in the neck at the complex in the Chatswood area of Sydney on Wednesday as the teenager was being escorted from the premises following a “domestic incident.”

The victim, identified by authorities as a Taiwanese national, later died in hospital. A second man was also treated for a minor injury.


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China Becomes First Country To Land On Far Side Of Moon, State Media Announces

That's one giant leap for China.

China state television announced Thursday that China's Chang'e 4 lunar explorer, which launched in early December, "became the first ever probe to soft-land on the far side of the moon." The probe touched down at 10:26 Beijing time, the China Global Television Network said.

If confirmed, this makes China the first nation in the world to soft-land on the far side of the moon. The landing "lifted the mysterious veil" from the far side, and "opened a new chapter in human lunar exploration," the broadcaster said, according to Reuters. (A soft landing is where a lander touches down as gently as possible; it is preferable to a hard landing.)


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Breath test that could revolutionise cancer diagnosis to be trialed in Britain

A breathalyser test that could revolutionise cancer diagnosis is being trialled in the UK.

The Breath Biopsy device is designed to detect cancer hallmarks in molecules exhaled by patients. Scientists hope it will lead to a simpler, cheaper method of spotting cancers at an early stage, when they are more likely to respond to treatment.

The cancer breathalyser has the potential to save thousands of lives and save millions of pounds in healthcare costs, its developers claim.


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Santa and an Elf Tightrope Walk Over Moscow

Santa and one of his elves have rung in the New Year in central Moscow.

Eyewitnesses spotted one of the daredevils walking the tightrope on Tverskaya Ulitsa this weekend during a practice run before the big day.

Perched on a highline and dressed in an elf suit on New Year’s Eve, highliner Maxim Kagin entertained passersby with a Chicken Dance.

Videos posted on social media showed Kagin and his partner, Munich-based slackliner Friedi Kühne, dressed as Santa and braving the elements to make it back and forth across the 20-meter-wide avenue.


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Anti-drone military equipment removed from Gatwick airport

>Army were sent in before Christmas to end three days of travel disruption caused by drone sightings

Military hardware deployed to stop drones disrupting flights at Gatwick Airport before Christmas has now been withdrawn, the Ministry of Defence has said.

Multiple drone sightings at the airfield caused mass disruption to hundreds of thousands of passengers over three days, prompting Sussex Police to call in the army to end the travel chaos.

Around 1,000 flights were grounded as Gatwick was forced to close for 33 hours between 19 and 31 December. The airport reopened hours after receiving assistance from the armed forces.


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Confiscated Dirty Money to Be Added to Russia's Pension Fund

Assets seized in corruption cases will now be diverted into Russia’s pension fund as retirement ages are set to go up this year.

Lawmakers adopted the corrupt asset-seizure amendments which President Vladimir Putin signed into law last fall alongside unpopular hikes in Russians’ retirement ages that sparked nationwide protests.

“These funds [used to] disappear inside the federal budget,” the head of Russia’s state-owned Pension Fund Anton Drozdov said shortly after the changes became law. “[As of Jan. 1], they will definitely be allocated to pension payments.”


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Warming seas linked to bluefin tuna surge in UK waters

Growing numbers of bluefin tuna are being seen in the waters around the UK because of the warming impact of a long term ocean current say researchers.

These large, speedy fish are a globally endangered species and almost disappeared from the UK around 40 years ago.

Scientists say that their recent rise is connected to the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO).

Now in a warm phase, the current makes UK waters more hospitable for the species.


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