the unofficial Slashdot digest for 2020-Mar-24 today archive


  1. Researchers Found a Way To Control Bacteria To Transport Microscopic Cargo
  2. Firefox Is Launching a New Test Pilot With Scroll To Pay Web Publishers
  3. Microsoft Throttles Some Office 365 Services To Continue To Meet Demand
  4. The Supreme Court Says States Cannot Be Sued For Copyright Infringement
  5. Amazon Prioritizes Essential Products in India, Temporarily Discontinues 'Lower-Priority' Items
  6. SF Businesses Decline Cash, Fearing it Could Spread the Virus
  7. Apple Releases iOS 13.4, iPadOS 13.4, macOS 10.15.4, tvOS 13.4, and watchOS 6.2
  8. Doctors Are Hoarding Unproven Coronavirus Medicine By Writing Prescriptions For Themselves and Their Families
  9. UPS To Develop New Delivery Drones With German Drone-Maker Wingcopter
  10. Ford, 3M, GE and the UAW To Build Respirators, Ventilators and Face Shields For Coronavirus Fight
  11. Comcast Wins Supreme Court Case Over Interpretation of Civil Rights Law
  12. Meet the Chinese OS That's Trying To Shift the Country Off Windows
  13. Akamai To Slow Video Game Downloads To Minimize Internet Congestion
  14. We May Finally Be Able To Destroy a Dreaded 'Forever Chemical' in Our Drinking Water
  15. YouTube To Limit Video Quality Around the World for a Month
  16. Google, LG, Don't Want Qualcomm's Super-Expensive Flagship Processor Snapdragon 865, Reports Say
  17. India Under Lockdown for 21 Days To Fight Coronavirus
  18. Warmer Weather May Slow, But Not Halt, Coronavirus
  19. Mozilla Launches New Initiative With Scroll To Fund Publishers
  20. Labs Are Euthanizing Thousands of Mice In Response To Coronavirus Pandemic
  21. HP Teases 'Next Gen' VR Headset Made With Microsoft and Valve's Help
  22. Star Wars: Tatooine Was Likely Orbiting In the Same Plane As Its Twin Suns

Alterslash picks up to the best 5 comments from each of the day’s Slashdot stories, and presents them on a single page for easy reading.

Researchers Found a Way To Control Bacteria To Transport Microscopic Cargo

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Phys.Org: Bacteria form the largest biomass in the world, larger than all the animals and plants combined, and they are constantly moving, but their movement is chaotic. The researchers [at the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen, in collaboration with groups in U.S. and U.K.] pursued the idea that if this motion could be controlled, they might be able to develop it into a biological tool. They used a liquid crystal to dictate the direction of the bacterial movement, and added a microscopic cargo for the bacteria to carry, more than five times the size of the bacteria.

Assistant Professor Amin Doostmohammadi at the Niels Bohr Institute explains that in the past, there have been attempts to control the behavior of bacteria. But he and his colleagues adopted a novel approach: "We thought to ourselves, how about we create a track for the bacteria? The way we do that experimentally is to put the bacteria inside a liquid crystal. The trick is that a liquid crystal is not like a crystal, nor is it a liquid, it is somewhere in between. Each molecule in the crystal has an orientation, but doesn't have a positional order. This means that the molecules can flow like a liquid, but they can also align like a crystal at the same time. [...] Strong jets of bacteria moving in a designated direction without fluctuations is the great outcome of the experiment, according to Amin Doostmohammadi. What usually happens if the jets of bacteria are strong enough to be useful, the concentration of bacteria has to be high, and instabilities typically start to appear. The jet becomes unstable and chaotic. But in the liquid crystal pattern, the instabilities can be largely suppressed and prevent the bacterial jets from becoming chaotic. The pattern dictates the direction. This means it is possible to create jets of bacteria strong enough to carry strings of microscopic cargo, each piece of cargo five times the size of the bacteria themselves.

And then we're all screwed

By fahrbot-bot • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Bacteria form the largest biomass in the world, larger than all the animals and plants combined ... it is possible to create jets of bacteria strong enough to carry strings of microscopic cargo, each piece of cargo five times the size of the bacteria themselves.

Just wait until the bacteria unionize ...

Firefox Is Launching a New Test Pilot With Scroll To Pay Web Publishers

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Mozilla and Scroll have made an earlier-announced partnership slightly more official today with the wider release of a browser extension called " Firefox Better Web." It's part of Firefox's ongoing effort to combat tracking on the web, but with the small twist that it includes the option to sign up for Scroll. The Verge reports: Scroll, if you don't recall, is the $5-a-month service that stops ads from loading on certain websites. It's not technically an ad blocker, but rather lets publishers know they shouldn't serve them in the first place when you visit. For a limited time, the subscription will cost $2.50 per month for the first six months. The Mozilla partnership essentially builds Scroll into a package of tools that Mozilla offers as a test pilot. The idea is to see how far Firefox can go blocking trackers and other malfeasance (short of full ad blocking) without fully breaking the web or de-funding publishers.

The extension includes Scroll and also a "customized Enhanced Tracking Protection setting that will block third-party trackers, fingerprinters, and cryptominers," according to Mozilla. It will work across different desktop browsers, but of course it is designed primarily to be used with Firefox. The deal with Mozilla should get Scroll a much larger userbase, but neither company would disclose any financial terms. Scroll takes a 30 percent cut of your subscription fee and pays the rest out to its partner publishers based on your web browsing habits. It tracks those habits automatically, and the company tells me that it will soon offer users tools to delete their data -- on top of a pledge to never sell that data. Scroll also pledges to make it easier for small publishers to sign up through an automated system soon.

Re:Uhm, how about not serving the fucking ads

By fulldecent • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

You can use this new app IN ADDITION to blocking all ads.

Not using ad block is a sucker's mistake, of course. But I do see value in throwing some money to websites I visit.

Tracking, not ads, is the problem

By evanh • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

If they'd stop doing the tracking then I'd have no gripe with some random and/or article related ads.

30% cut

By Sebby • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Scroll takes a 30 percent cut of your subscription fee and pays the rest out to its partner publishers based on your web browsing habits

I guess we can all thank Apple & Google for setting the tone for how much content creators get ripped off.

Re:This must pay a lot

By Retired ICS • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Chrome is a Google hunk-o-shit. You are not supposed to type URLs. You are supposed to search using Google.

In the near future you will not be permitted to enter or see URLs in Chrome at all. It will just be a "Tab to Google".

Re:What the fuck is this trash?

By JaredOfEuropa • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Read the article (or even the summary): this is a plugin that blocks ads from participating sites, but compensates those sites for the loss of ad revenue, with money provided by the subscription fees. Ad-blockers on the other hand block all ads, and leave site operators without compensation. Essentially it turns a participating site into paid-for site with an ad-supported free option, and you pay for your visit to the site with your subscription to this FF plugin. It's not a bad idea...

Microsoft Throttles Some Office 365 Services To Continue To Meet Demand

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
In response to high demand as a result of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, Microsoft has started taking action to preserve overall performance by throttling some services. ZDNet reports: On March 16, Microsoft posted to Microsoft 365/Office 365 admin dashboardds a warning about "temporary feature adjustments" that it might take. That warning told customers that Microsoft was "making temporary adjustments to select non-essential capabilities." Officials said they did not expect these changes to have significan impact on users' experiences. Among the examples of the types of changes Microsoft might take would be things like how often its services check for presence; intervals in which other parties typing are displayed; and video resolution. Today, March 24, Microsoft started cautioning Microsoft 365/Office 365 commercial users of some other "temporary changes" they should expect. The list:

- OneNote in Teams will be read-only for commercial tenants, excluding EDU. Users can go to OneNote for the web for editing.
- Download size and sync frequency of file attachments has been changed.
- You can find details on these and other OneNote related updates at

- We are rescheduling specific backend operations to regional evening and weekend business hours. Impacted capabilities include migration, DLP and delays in file management after uploading a new file, video or image.
- Reduced video resolution for playback videos

- People timeline has been disabled for newly uploaded videos. Pre-existing videos will not be impacted.

Re:Video sucked

By AK Marc • Score: 5, Funny • Thread
So, Skype for Business sucked, so you used Skype instead, provided by the same company, and that made you happy?

In some of the UK AZURE is out of resources

By Canberra1 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
Yes AZURE. Out of resources, but technically not an outage, so MS displays green ticks. Now, if you had to do a BR/DR/ Business recovery, say due to ransomware you are probably hosed or worse. Yes, there is a server shortage. But the plug of infinite on demand storage/instances - is plain wrong. Businesses who think they are important need to keep a card/storage up their sleeves, because the salespitch has failed..

This is why ...

By Retired ICS • Score: 3 • Thread

This is why using someone else's computer (aka The Cloud) is such a bad idea. If they shut down completely and kept all the money there is probably nothing the victims could do about it. So y'all made your bed, now go sleep in it and stop bothering me that you were so bloody stupid. I have nothing to say except "Gee, I told you so, now fuck off".

Re:This is why ...

By thegarbz • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Indeed. Because people who ran their own servers are happily coping with a fundamental change in their IT infrastructure. /Sarcasm

Seriously if you look to the companies which did migrate to "someone else's frigging huge data centre" they are the ones coping the best. Companies which have kept things in house are frigging crumbling right now. Skype servers down due to being unable to serve video. VPNs down due to being unable to scale.

Gee you told me so that my aromatically stored and shared streaming video is reduced in quality, that replication and back end activities may get scheduled nightly? What will I do! Go to sleep, in the bed I made, and I'll sleep comfortably.

It's amazing that the demonstrated successes of cloud services scaling more than anyone ever imagined they would still brings out people who think they would be able to handle the situation better in on their own underfunded aging in house garbage infrastructure.

Re:Video sucked

By ruddk • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Nope. Getting the task done and solving the problem made me happy. That was the focus.

The Supreme Court Says States Cannot Be Sued For Copyright Infringement

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
sandbagger shares a report from PetaPixel: The Supreme Court of the United States dealt a major blow to photographers' copyright protections when it declared that states cannot be sued for copyright infringement because they have "sovereign immunity." The opinion came down as part of a writ of certiorari regarding the case of Allen v Cooper. A writ of certiorari is basically a review of a lower court's decision, and in this case, the Supreme Court has upheld the decision by the Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, which decided that states are immune from copyright infringement lawsuits.

The case began in 2013, when videographer Frederick Allen sued North Carolina for using his videos of the salvage of Queen Anne's Revenge, a shipwreck discovered off the North Carolina coast in 1998, without permission. The state claimed "sovereign immunity," and though they initially lost this argument in the Eastern District of North Carolina, the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit reversed the ruling. Allen appealed one final time, which is how we ended up with today's decision by The Supreme Court.

In essence, the Supreme Court agreed with the Fourth Circuit, ultimately striking down the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act (CRCA) of 1990. This 30-year-old amendment to the Copyright Act of 1976 tried to strip states of their sovereign immunity where copyright was concerned, and it was at the core of Allen's lawsuit. If states can't claim sovereign immunity to get out of copyright infringement, then North Carolina had no defense. Unfortunately, the Supreme Court agreed with the Fourth Circuit, stating that Congress lacked the authority to take away State's immunity in the CRCA, passing the buck back to Congress and giving states carte blanche to infringe with impunity (or, as it were, immunity).

Re:What. Da. Fuq?

By mark-t • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Generally speaking, when people say "You can't sue X (for reason Y)", they usually mean that the reason for suing does not actually stand upon its own merits against the party being sued.

If, in fact, it is the lack of the merits of someone's case that will impose limits on the likelihood of success in a lawsuit then for all practical purposes, the fact that they probably aren't going to actually try and sue amounts to the same thing as if they were actually somehow prevented from doing so in the first place.

Re:Try that with Microsoft instead

By Immerman • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

>It seems that we don't recognize the sovereign immunity of foreign nations to ignore copyright.

Since when? China rarely violates copyrights anyway - Chinese companies do, and they don't have sovereign immunity. American courts just don't have jurisdiction to do anything about it, except as allowed by Chinese law.

We lean on other nations heavily to adopt "compatible" copyright laws specifically because our laws don't apply to them.


By mark-t • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
I linked to it because it was convenient. If you can cite a source that contradicts it, by all means, do so.


By Impy the Impiuos Imp • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The state defaults to the right to take property at will. But the state chose to make a law to say they will compensate someone when they do so.

Technically The People chose to make a law, by way of the US Constitution and many state ones, to prevent seizure of property without compensation.

And people should not think of it as a technicality. Get out of ths mindset your rights are a gift from the powerful. Rather, they are inherent in you by fact of being human.


By BlueStrat • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The result was Federal government lacks the authority to waive a US State's sovereign immunity Not just on the copyright act, but over any matter, except where a constitutional provision allows for it.

Might have had better luck suing under the "due process" and "takings" clauses of the 5th Amendment.

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

There was no due process performed by the State nor was the taking fairly (or even unfairly) compensated. States (and the Federal government) have successfully been sued under these clauses many times.


Amazon Prioritizes Essential Products in India, Temporarily Discontinues 'Lower-Priority' Items

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Amazon said on Tuesday that it is temporarily discontinuing accepting orders for "lower-priority" products in India and prioritizing servicing urgent items such as household staples, health care, and personal safety products as the e-commerce player -- along with several of its competitors -- grapples with coronavirus outbreak in one of its key overseas markets. From a report: "To serve our customers' most urgent needs while also ensuring safety of our employees, we are temporarily prioritizing our available fulfilment and logistics capacity to serve products that are currently critical for our customers such as household staples, packaged food, health care, hygiene, personal safety and other high priority products," the American e-commerce giant said in a statement. "This also means that we have to temporarily stop taking orders and disable shipments for lower-priority products," it added. Understandably, the company said it did not have a timeline to share for how long this new measure would last. Amazon has taken a similar approach in the U.S. and Italy. The move, which goes into effect today, comes as nearly every Indian state has imposed a lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Alternate headline - Amazon obeys law

By Admiral Krunch • Score: 3 • Thread
India is under lockdown

e. Delivery of all essential goods including food, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment through E-commerce.

Amazon is just obeying the local law, same as all other delivery companies.

SF Businesses Decline Cash, Fearing it Could Spread the Virus

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
When customers step in for a cup of coffee at Ritual Coffee Roasters on Valencia Street, a sign informs them that cash is no longer welcome. The coffee shop wants customers to use contactless forms of payments to pick up their cups of joe, in an effort to curb the spread of the new coronavirus. More and more businesses are turning away from cash, fearing that the virus could be sitting on banknotes and coins, as it exchanges hands from person to person in everyday transactions. From a report: "Looking at the situation with COVID-19 getting worse, we decided to switch," said Eileen Rinaldo, owner of Ritual Coffee. "Cash is notoriously covered with germs and it's a matter of eliminating that point of contact." The reluctance to take cash is emerging even though San Francisco ordered most businesses to accept cash last year, out of a concern that the trend to cashless payments was shutting out those without access to smartphones and credit cards. The city said it's still enforcing the rule and does not plan to lift it temporarily. "We're not currently engaged in any discussions about a freeze on this important equity policy," said Gloria Chan, spokeswoman for the Office of Economic and Workforce Development. "As a city, we still need to ensure everyone can purchase goods, whether or not they have access to credit or noncash forms of payment." Still, fears of cash abound. Other companies, like food delivery service DoorDash, are providing cashless options for payments. And on Saturday, cash toll collection on all seven Bay Area bridges was temporarily suspended under Gov. Gavin Newsom's orders, to curb the spread of the virus.


By renegade600 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

well, since the employees are handling the cups and other needed condiments, the customers need to quit buying from those businesses since the virus can also be transfer that way.

Re:It's disgusting

By StikyPad • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Also cotton/linen textiles (like US cash) are generally inhospitable to viruses, and poor vectors for transmission. Plastic credit cards and/or the keypads to enter your PIN, on the other hand....

Re:Not all can do this.

By jpaine619 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

You only need to accept cash when someone owes a debt. If the customer pays before you provide the product or service, you don't have to accept cash.


Section 31 U.S.C. 5103, entitled "Legal tender," states: "United States coins and currency [including Federal reserve notes and circulating notes of Federal reserve banks and national banks] are legal tender for all debts, public charges, taxes, and dues."

This statute means that all United States money as identified above is a valid and legal offer of payment for debts when tendered to a creditor. There is, however, no Federal statute mandating that a private business, a person, or an organization must accept currency or coins as payment for goods or services. Private businesses are free to develop their own policies on whether to accept cash unless there is a state law which says otherwise.

That quote is taken directly from a page at the Federal Reserve. I'm pretty sure the guys that print the money know what the fuck they are talking about when it comes to said cash.


By jpaine619 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

China about as Communist as we are a Democracy. In both places only the elites get to chose leadership and laws.

Except in one place, you can get health care without going bankrupt

Oh give me a fucking break. I've had health care insurance my entire life. Only, before this fucking government take-over of the system, it was actually affordable. The moment ObamaCare came into effect, my rates doubled. Pretty easy to understand why... I'm effectively paying for someone else's healthcare, also, now.

I'm not a rich person, far from it. But, as usual, it's the middle class that gets soaked with paying for every goddamn new welfare entitlement bullshit they can think up. The rich have fantastic lawyers and accountants and lobbyists to make damn sure they aren't targeted for higher taxes, but us normal folks don't have those kinds of resources. So we become poorer and poorer.

The fucking leftists who think up all these new welfare programs also are the same retards that think the rich can foot the entire bill. Sure, they could... for a while. I remember doing some amateur research on how much money the government could get out of the rich if they simply seized 100% of their assets.. Old school style.. Just take it.. And yeah, it was a lot.. But it would have only funded the deficit for like 3 years.

Then what the fuck?!?

There's a reason why every fucking communist country that has ever existed (with the sole exception of China who are more capitalistic than they'll admit to) were miserably poor.

C'mon.. Cold war Albania? Who the fuck wanted to live there? 1970's Soviet Union?!? Yeah.. sign me up, I can't wait to stand in a line, for 6 hours, for two loaves of bread.


By Vandil X • Score: 3 • Thread

I seldom carry cash myself, but Legal Tender is Legal Tender. Anything else requires the authorization of some authority that can reject, block, ban, your use of payment method.

We all need a baseline method the universally accepted. Cash is that method.

Apple Releases iOS 13.4, iPadOS 13.4, macOS 10.15.4, tvOS 13.4, and watchOS 6.2

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Apple today officially released versions 13.4 of iOS, iPadOS, and tvOS to the public, alongside macOS 10.15.4 and watchOS 6.2. While many of their improvements are minor, there are a few standout features across the updates. From a report: One of the most noteworthy additions is a dramatic expansion of iPadOS 13's prior trackpad and mouse support, which was limited solely to an Accessibility option before evolving to full system-wide support across all iPad models capable of running iPadOS 13.4. Now, keyboard-trackpad hybrids (such as the upcoming Magic Keyboard for iPad), standalone trackpads, and standalone mice can create a cursor that highlights and selects on-screen text and objects, paving the way for more Mac-like apps on Apple's tablets. Another major improvement is cross-platform support for a new universal app purchase option, enabling a single app developed using Apple's shared Catalyst framework to be purchased and run across Macs, iPhones, iPads, and Apple TVs. This feature went live for developers yesterday, and it uses the iOS App Store as the base for universal apps. Standalone Mac App Store app listings will likely need to be abandoned for the transition to universal apps.

Also Mojave and High sierra got updates

By williamyf • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Important for those people with 32 bit apps, or older machines not supported in Catalina.

The relevant link:

Doctors Are Hoarding Unproven Coronavirus Medicine By Writing Prescriptions For Themselves and Their Families

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from ProPublica: A nationwide shortage of two drugs touted as possible treatments for the coronavirus is being driven in part by doctors inappropriately prescribing the medicines for family, friends and themselves, according to pharmacists and state regulators. Demand for chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine surged over the past several days as President Donald Trump promoted them as possible treatments for the coronavirus and online forums buzzed with excitement over a small study suggesting the combination of hydroxychloroquine and a commonly used antibiotic could be effective in treating COVID-19.

"It's disgraceful, is what it is," said Garth Reynolds, executive director of the Illinois Pharmacists Association, which started getting calls and emails Saturday from members saying they were receiving questionable prescriptions. "And completely selfish." Reynolds said the Illinois Pharmacists Association has started reaching out to pharmacists and medical groups throughout the state to urge doctors, nurses and physician assistants not to write prescriptions for themselves and those close to them. "We even had a couple of examples of prescribers trying to say that the individual they were calling in for had rheumatoid arthritis," he said, explaining that pharmacists suspected that wasn't true. "I mean, that's fraud." In one case, Reynolds said, the prescriber initially tried to get the pills without an explanation and only offered up that the individual had rheumatoid arthritis after the pharmacist questioned the prescription. In a bulletin to pharmacists on Sunday, the state association wrote that it was "disturbed by the current actions of prescribers" and instructed members on how to file a complaint against physicians and nurses who were doing it.
It's important to note that there is little evidence that the drugs work to treat coronavirus, although clinical trials are underway to find out.

The report mentions a man in his 60s who died after ingesting a version of the chloroquine commonly used to clean fish tanks. "The man, who thought he might have COVID-19, took a small amount of the substance in a misguided effort to treat his symptoms," reports ProPublica. "His wife was also hospitalized after taking the substance but survived."

Re:medical personnel should be first

By reboot246 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
Oh, the lies, lies, lies. Here's the truth about ONE of them. You look up the rest to learn the truth.

What happened was that during the H1N1 outbreak (2009) we depleted our supply of masks. Obama administration was told they needed to be replenished but they never took action and now we're in this mess.

Trump's fault? A different story from the Los Angeles Times published last week goes into more detail about what happened after the swine flu pandemic depleted the supply. According to their story, "After the swine flu epidemic in 2009, a safety-equipment industry association and a federally sponsored task force both recommended that depleted supplies of N95 respirator masks be replenished by the stockpile." The problem is that didn't happen. According to Charles Johnson, president of the International Safety Equipment Association, about 100 million N95 respirator masks were used up during the swine flu pandemic of 2009-2010, but, he said was unaware of any "major effort to restore the stockpile to cover that drawdown."

In short, even though the Obama administration was advised to replenish the national stockpile of the N95 respirator masks, they didn't. Despite the fact the media traced the cause of the shortage back to 2009, they accuse Trump of poor planning and trying to deflect responsibility. It doesn't take a genius to know that in 2009 Barack Obama was president, but not once in either story did Bloomberg or the Los Angeles Times link the failure to replenish the N95 respirator masks with Obama or his administration, after they apparently ignored recommendations to do so.

Re:medical personnel should be first

By satsuke • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Trump has been president for 3.2 years now.

Blaming Obama is exactly the sort of deflection I'd expect .. from Trump.

This pandemic is on his watch and his watch only.

Re:medical personnel should be first

By Seigen1 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Trump has been president for 3.2 years now.

Blaming Obama is exactly the sort of deflection I'd expect .. from Trump.

This pandemic is on his watch and his watch only.

Yep, and as I pointed out any masks from 2009 would be expired, so Trump's team not replacing them is 100% and totally on Trump and his team, oh right, he fired/let go his team, so its on Trump himself.

Around 2016 Donald Trump said something along the lines of, "It's going to be the best the absolute best most wonderful perfect health care." Then after having only middling success in killing Obamacare, without replacing it said something close to, "Who'd have thought health care could be so complicated?"

The first thing Obama did when he took office was work on improving health care. The very first thing Trump did on his first day was to issue Executive Order 13765 to reduce peoples health care by scaling back parts of, you guessed it the Affordable Care Act.


Re:Cocaine I presume

By quenda • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

A couple goes to a doctor ...
A couple, both age 78, went to a sex therapist's office. The doctor asked, "What can I do for you?"
The man said, "Will you watch us have sex?"
The doctor looked puzzled, but agreed.

When the couple finished, the doctor said, "There's nothing wrong with the way you have sex," and charged them $50.
This happened several weeks in a row. The couple would make an appointment, have sex with no problems, pay the doctor, then leave.
Finally, the doctor asked, "Just exactly what are you trying to find out?"

"We're not trying to find out anything," the husband replied. "She's married and we can't go to her house. I'm married and we can't go to my house. The Holiday Inn charges $90. The Hilton charges $108. We do it here for $50...and I get $43 back from public insurance.

I guess this joke does not work in the US, where motels cost less than doctors :-)

Re: medical personnel should be first

By Seigen1 • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

President Trump is more honest


false or misleading statements by January.

Please, check yourself into an asylum, because you seem to be delusional.

UPS To Develop New Delivery Drones With German Drone-Maker Wingcopter

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
UPS' Flight Forward subsidiary focused on drone delivery is partnering with German drone-maker Wingcopter to develop the next generation of package delivery drones for a variety of use cases in the United States and internationally. GPS World reports: UPS chose Wingcopter for its unmanned aircraft technology and its track record in delivering a variety of goods over long distances in multiple international settings. As part of this collaboration -- UPSFF's first new relationship with a drone manufacturer since its formation -- both companies will work toward earning regulatory certification for a Wingcopter unmanned aircraft to make commercial delivery flights in the United States. It also is a critical step toward building a diverse fleet of drones with varying capabilities to meet potential customer needs.

The Wingcopter drones feature vertical takeoffs and landings in tight spaces, transitioning to efficient, high-speed horizontal flight, enabling ranges suitable for a variety of uses. These capabilities will allow UPSFF to begin developing solutions that, if approved, will go well beyond the healthcare and retail industries to solve long-standing challenges for high-tech, industrial manufacturing, hospitality, entertainment and other customers. [Wincopter's] electric vertical takeoff and landing drones have a patented tilt-rotor mechanism, which enables a seamless transition between two drone modes: multicopter for hovering and fixed-wing for low-noise forward flight. The aerodynamic Wingcopter aircrafts operate with stability even in harsh weather conditions.
"Drone delivery is not a one-size-fits-all operation," said Bala Ganesh, vice president of the UPS Advanced Technology Group. "Our collaboration with Wingcopter helps pave the way for us to start drone delivery service in new use-cases. UPS Flight Forward is building a network of technology partners to broaden our unique capability to serve customers and extend our leadership in drone delivery."

Ford, 3M, GE and the UAW To Build Respirators, Ventilators and Face Shields For Coronavirus Fight

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Ford announced today that it's partnering with 3M and GE to build respirators, ventilators and face shields for front-line healthcare workers and COVID-19 patients. TechCrunch reports: Its efforts include building Powered Air-Purifying Respirators (PAPRs) with partner 3M, including a new design that employs existing parts from both partners to deliver effectiveness and highly scalable production capacity. Ford says that it's also going to be building face shields, leaning on its 3D printing capabilities, with an anticipated production rate of more than 100,000 units per week. The company has designed a new face shield, which will be tested with the first 1,000 units this week at Detroit Mercy, Henry Ford Health Systems and Detroit Medical Center Sinai-Grace Hospitals in Michigan to evaluate their efficacy. Provided they perform as planned, Ford anticipates scaling to building 75,000 by end of week, with 100,000 able to be made in one of the company's Plymouth, Mich. production facilities each week thereafter.

The automaker is also going to be working with GE on expanding production capacity for GE Healthcare's ventilator, with a simplified design that should allow for higher-volume production. That's part of a response to a U.S. government request for more units to support healthcare needs, the company said. On top of its U.S.-focused ventilator project with GE, Ford is also working on a separate effort to spin up ventilator production targeting the U.K. based on a request for aid from that country's government, and it's also shipping back 165,000 N95 respirator masks that were sent by the company from the U.S. to China earlier this year, since the need for that equipment is now greater back in the U.S., the company said, and China's situation continues to improve.
"The PAPRs that Ford is building, for instance, will use off-the-shelf components from the automaker's F-150 truck's cooled seating, as well as 3M's existing HEPA filters," the report adds. "These respirators could potentially offer significant advantages in use compared to N95s, since they are battery-powered and can filter airborne virus particles for up to eight hours on a single, swappable standard power tool battery pack worn at the waist."

Re:Yes, but will they do it for free?

By quonset • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

You know what Pelosi wanted in the bill? For any company which gets taxpayer money, it would ban corporations from paying bonuses to their executives or paying any compensation to fired executives until the corporations repay their coronavirus relief loans to the federal government.

The bill would also ban corporations receiving relief loans from buying back their own stock or paying out dividends to shareholders. And it would bar such corporations from lobbying the federal government.

But Moscow Mitch said that's too tough. His bill only prohibits businesses that receive coronavirus relief funds from giving raises for two years to employees who make more than $425,000 a year. It also bans such companies from paying severance packages to employees who make more than $425,000 that are worth more than twice what the employee made last year.

So you're right. Republicans want to spend, spend, spend while Democrats want to hold corporations accountable for the taxpayer they want to receive. For the second time in a decade.

Re:Fact Checks

By just another AC • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

*sigh* looking for conspiracies/malice to prove your "side's" superiority. Why are you in the US always so quick to jump to that?

Reality is far more mundane. Probably is more to do with the specific wording of the question used (who would've thought a tech forum would think syntax matters?). Take the following paragraph from the article:

"Asked about production timelines and capacity, 3M Global Technical Director Mike Kesti said that they’re still working that out, with a focus on how Ford can supplement existing PAPR production before moving into producing their new version."

This means that Ford can both say "we are months away from making [our] respirators" and "we will [help GE] produce respirators this week" and both be correct.

Re:Fact Checks

By Roger W Moore • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

It's difficult to imagine how the Associated Press could have gotten that so wrong unless they are deliberately printing lies.

Actually, in the current rapidly changing situation it is easy to imagine that the person the press called had no knowledge of this and the situation was being discussed at the CEO-level between companies. In this case, Trump did actually know what he was talking about but that's the problem if you lie all the time: people won't believe you even when you are telling the truth.

Re:Yes, but will they do it for free?

By quonset • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

I'm trying to see the downside of anything you're whining about.

$15/hour minimum wage shouldn't be a big deal for these companies who received the largest tax cut in this country's history and have been buying back billions of their own stock and giving out raises and bonuses to executives. This is on top of the billions in tax breaks these companies receive each year. What makes this argument so hilarious is these same companies are now begging the taxpayers for more money after they squandered it all on frivolous purchases. So much for trickle down economics, huh?

Ballot harvesting is not a big deal if oversight is maintained. The Republicans in California admit to doing it themselves but have admiration for the Democrats who did a much better job. Considering the fiasco in North Carolina and Georgia's destruction of all voting evidence despite a court order not to do so, ballot harvesting isn't a big deal.

Why not on same day voter registration? Don't you want people to vote? You have to provide proof of ID to register the first time, so what's the big deal? Oh right. Certain people don't want more people participating in their government. Apparently one of the traditional American values is vote suppression.

Unused kit

By flyingfsck • Score: 3 • Thread
Better to buy now from China, than gear up to make them. There will be warehouses full of unused kit as soon as a viable treatment comes. Similar to the end of Polio in the 1950s.

Comcast Wins Supreme Court Case Over Interpretation of Civil Rights Law

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: Comcast has won a US Supreme Court case against Byron Allen's Entertainment Studios Networks (ESN), dealing a major blow to Allen's attempt to prove that Comcast's refusal to carry ESN channels was motivated by racial bias. The key question taken up by the court was whether a claim of race discrimination under the 42 U.S.C. 1981 statute can proceed without a "but-for causation." As the Legal Information Institute explains, a "but-for test" asks "but for the existence of X, would Y have occurred?"

The US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit ruled in 2018 that the case could proceed because ESN "needed only to plausibly allege that discriminatory intent was a factor in Comcast's refusal to contract, and not necessarily the but-for cause of that decision." The Supreme Court ruling issued yesterday reversed that decision, saying that a "plaintiff bears the burden of showing that the plaintiff's race was a but-for cause of its injury, and that burden remains constant over the life of the lawsuit." Because of yesterday's unanimous Supreme Court ruling, ESN would have to prove that racism was a determining ("but-for") factor in Comcast's decision rather than just one motivating factor. ESN and the National Association of African American Owned Media were seeking a $20 billion judgment because of Comcast's refusal to pay for carriage of ESN networks, namely Cars.TV, Comedy.TV, ES.TV, JusticeCentral.TV, MyDestination.TV, Pets.TV, Recipe.TV, and The Weather Channel. Comcast has said it didn't pay for ESN channels because of lack of customer demand for the company's programming and the bandwidth costs of carrying the channels. Comedian and media mogul Byron Allen founded ESN in 1993 and is the company's chairman and CEO.
"Few legal principles are better established than the rule requiring a plaintiff to establish causation," Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote in the court's decision against ESN. "In the law of torts, this usually means a plaintiff must first plead and then prove that its injury would not have occurred 'but for' the defendant's unlawful conduct. The plaintiffs before us suggest that 42 U.S.C.1981 departs from this traditional arrangement. But looking to this particular statute's text and history, we see no evidence of an exception."

In addition, this was a 9-0 ruling.

By sconeu • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

8 justices signed the Courts opinion, and RBG provided a concurring opinion.

ESN lost, and lost big.

Re:I guess the judges have Fios

By myth24601 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The only property they have worth mentioning is The Weather Channel, the others are just wastes of bandwidth. If they gave prisoners only those channels to watch, it would be considered cruel and unusual punishment. I can't stress it enough, those channels suck.

The Weather Channel is starting to loose its luster too. They now come up with their own names for snow storms just to try to cash in on it like they do with hurricane coverage.

Re:In addition, this was a 9-0 ruling.

By liquid_schwartz • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Now they need to invalidate the "disparate impact" doctrine.

So true. Disparate impact is possibly the dumbest idea ever. If more of [aggrieved group] commit murders do we stop prosecuting murder? For murder people generally say no but for other instances they just toss out standards instead of holding everyone accountable. A great example of this from Commiefornia is the ban on willfull defiance. Similar bans exist, officially or unofficially, on most forms of behavior because certain groups cannot be bothered to follow rules or play nice with others. Basic common sense should apply and that easily disqualifies disparate impact. Consistent standards of conduct that are applied evenly should remain, even if certain groups have trouble following the rules.


Re:What about the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals

By Solandri • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Its the third highest at having decisions reversed (77%). And not much higher than the overall average (70%). (The reversal rate is so high because only cases where one party feels they have a good chance of getting reversed are appealed, and the SCotUS only agrees to hear cases they feel have a good chance of being reversed. The vast majority of cases simply aren't appealed to the SCotUS, or the SCotUS declines to hear the case.)

The 9th Circuit has the highest total number of appeals reversed. But that's just because it covers the largest population (over 20%), and so hears the most cases. Same difference as looking at total military spending (where the U.S. is the highest in the world) vs. military spending as percent of GDP (where the U.S. is only a bit above the world average). The 9th Circuit gets a lot of cases reversed simply because it hears a lot more cases. And the U.S. just spends a lot on its military because it has a lot more money.

Re:What about the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals

By markdavis • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

>"I'm sure you will enjoy the coming theocracy"

If the "coming theocracy" means adhering to the meaning, language, and intent of Constitution, then please, bring it on...

Meet the Chinese OS That's Trying To Shift the Country Off Windows

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
China's homegrown operating systems haven't made much of a dent on the global stage. Now there's a Linux-based system that's aimed at weaning the country off Windows. From a report: UOS, or Unified Operating System, hit a new milestone after its first stable release in January: Union Tech's OS can now boot in 30 seconds on China-made chips. It's an important step as Chinese tech companies look to reduce their dependence on US-made software and hardware. The struggles of ZTE and Huawei illustrate this clearly: The former was reliant on chips made in the US to produce smartphones, while the latter has the difficult task of selling Android handsets outside China without Google apps or services. The "current international climate" has made it imperative for China to have its own foundational software to avoid being cut off by the US, said the general manager of Union Tech, Liu Wenhan. While Chinese operating systems currently account for less than 1% of the market, Liu said he expects them to grow to 20% to 30% in the future. Integrating homegrown Chinese chips could be the biggest accomplishment of UOS if it pans out. Although Chinese computer chips still don't approach the sophistication of those created by US-based companies, Union Tech said that it is actively working with Chinese chipmakers like Loongson and Sunway to facilitate the gradual replacement of American technology in the Chinese government and pillar industries. In December, Beijing ordered all government offices and public institutions to remove foreign computer equipment and software within three years.

Does it come with antivirus protection?

By Baleet • Score: 5, Funny • Thread
Too soon? I'll show myself out.

Because clueless Windows-natives ...

By BAReFO0t • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

... think computers need to be (re)booted constantly, and apparently can't tell hibernation/sleep from a proper boot procedure anyway. (Windows 10 hibernates by default, when you say "shut down". It just closes the session.)

The only reason anyone should ever feel it necessary to reboot a Linux/Unix system, is to start a new kernel when it can't be done by only unloading and reloading certain parts of it.
Everything else is a bug.
Just like with your smartphone, actually.

Look at the benefit here

By solardesalination • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
Americans will likely not use this distribution because of privacy concerns. But regardless. UOS is based on Deepin, which is based on Debian. If they actually reached 20% penetration in the Chinese market, (what, half the population of China uses a desktop?) that's at least 100 million Debian linux desktop users. If 1% of those people start hacking the software like they did for making pirated Windows XP, the upstream contributions are going to increase substantially. I think this could lead to Debian being the new desktop operating system of choice in 5 or 10 years. Shame Ian isn't around to see it happen. :\

Re:Looks like any other distro

By Toonol • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
Watch your language. It should be 'novel distro-19', not 'Chinese distro',

Red Flag

By markdavis • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

>"Now there's a Linux-based system that's aimed at weaning the country off Windows. "

And, so, what happened to Red Flag Linux?

Whatever is old, is new again. Take a Linux distro, cram it full of spyware and controlware, and "viola" a new Chinese OS!

Akamai To Slow Video Game Downloads To Minimize Internet Congestion

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Online video gaming just became the latest victim of COVID-19. New submitter watha2020 shares a report: Akamai Technologies of Cambridge, the data delivery company that handles Internet traffic for many of the world's biggest companies, said on Tuesday it will deliberately delay downloads of video games during peak hours because of bottlenecks from so many people playing from home during the coronavirus shutdown. The slowdown will specifically affect downloads of games during daytime and evening hours, so that someone buying a downloadable copy of a new game such as "Doom Eternal" will have to wait a lot longer to start playing. Akamai said it will continue to allow normal high speed downloads late at night. In a posting on the company's blog Akamai chief executive Tom Leighton said the company is trying to ensure the demand for gaming downloads doesn't overwhelm the system's capacity to the point where other information is affected. "This will help ensure healthcare workers and first responders working hard to contain the spread of COVID-19 have continual access to the vital digital services they need," Leighton said.

Re:Who's going to be the first dumbass...

By hax 109 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Even with all the additional traffic during the lockdowns, which isn't that much btw., the traffic peak is still in the evening. Throttling during the daytime is just going to leave more bandwidth unused.

Akamai is a CDN operator. They send from servers close to the destination. Global backbones won't see an effect.

Oh good so for humanitarion reasons drop ads?

By Tyr07 • Score: 3 • Thread

Video ads use a ton of bandwidth, and a lot of extra images. So since they're so concerned about the amount of traffic they're going to suspend advertising until bandwidth can be increased right?

I'm not against throttling to deal with a surge like this. However I bet ads will be full quality still. They better drop that down too.

We May Finally Be Able To Destroy a Dreaded 'Forever Chemical' in Our Drinking Water

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Compounds once thought indestructible were successfully broken down. From a report: 2019, nearly two dozen water agencies in Southern California were found to have reportable levels of cancer-causing chemical compounds in their wells. By 2020, 700 agencies with similar contamination had been identified across the United States. These compounds, known as perfluorinated alkylated substances or PFAS, are dubbed "forever chemicals" because, for a long time, there was no known way to break them down. But Sharma Yamijala, a computational chemist at the University of California, Riverside, may have just discovered a solution. After hearing about the issue at a seminar in 2019, he got to work on the problem with two colleagues at the university. The results of their project were published in the journal Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics in January. "I thought that we should try something out to understand what's happening," he tells OneZero. Since the 1940s, PFAS have been used in a wide variety of products, like food packaging, nonstick pans, paints, cleaning supplies, and even smartphones. Because they don't break down in the environment, they get into drinking water and other living organisms, many of which we eat. Since the body can't digest them either, they accumulate inside of us, too.

"These pollutants are very persistent," explains Bryan Wong, one of Yamijala's co-authors on the paper, to OneZero. "They last for a long time." High levels of PFAS intake are linked to cancer as well as low birth weight and thyroid hormone disruption, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. In his research, Yamijala used computer simulations to study the chemical structure of the PFAS that are the most ubiquitous in the environment: perfluorooctanoic acid and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid. The carbon-fluorine bond that acts as the backbone of these chemicals is one of the strongest bonds in organic chemistry, which is why they seem to last forever. But this is exactly what the team's breakthrough addresses: When they exposed the compounds to excess electrons -- a process called reduction -- the bond with the fluorine atom broke. What's more, the broken molecules that resulted from the process had a domino effect on the remaining PFAS in the water. In the simulation, these smaller molecules accelerated the breaking down of the other PFA molecules.

More details

By Waffle Iron • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

The summary omits the details of how the reaction to break down PFAS was achieved: It's by treating the water with generous quantities of a reagent mixture made out of dioxins, PCBs and methylmercury.

Serious Question: how can they be dangerous?

By gurps_npc • Score: 3 • Thread

I am not being snarky, I am hoping someone here can actually answer the question.

If a chemical is 'forever' because nothing breaks it down, then how can it be dangerous? Basically if nothing can affect it, how can it mess you up?

Mercury for example combines with something called 'thiols'. If it combines with the thiols in your body, you get sick.

So the way we fix it is flood the mercury with thiols from out of your body. It attaches to the non-human thiols and gets controlled.


By Wdi • Score: 3 • Thread

That is a purely computational study, with zero experimental backing, and done at a PFA concentration about 100000000000 times higher than found in waste water (they handled 43 water molecules with one PFA molecule, the relevant environmental concentrations are in the ppb/ppt range).

Re: Serious Question: how can they be dangerous?

By Åke Malmgren • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
Although PFAS are metabolically inert themselves, they can interfere with endogenous metabolic processes and thus do have the ability to exert effects on metabolism. The alteration on metabolism could induce a wide range of biochemical and physiological changes. Metabolic effects have various connections with other systemic toxicities induced by PFAS and potentially serve as the fundamental basis for other observed toxicities.

Re:Serious Question: how can they be dangerous?

By ISayWeOnlyToBePolite • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

I am not being snarky, I am hoping someone here can actually answer the question.

If a chemical is 'forever' because nothing breaks it down, then how can it be dangerous? Basically if nothing can affect it, how can it mess you up?

Mercury for example combines with something called 'thiols'. If it combines with the thiols in your body, you get sick.

So the way we fix it is flood the mercury with thiols from out of your body. It attaches to the non-human thiols and gets controlled.

YouTube To Limit Video Quality Around the World for a Month

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
YouTube will reduce the quality of videos around the world starting Tuesday, an effort by the world's most popular video site to ease internet traffic during the coronavirus outbreak. From a report: Over the coming days, viewers will at first see YouTube videos in standard definition, the company said. Users will still be able to watch in high definition if they want, but will have to choose to do so. YouTube, part of Google, is extending a policy it already instituted in Europe, where regulators have asked major streaming services, including Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, to reduce their bandwidth usage.

Re:Already implemented in places...

By AmiMoJo • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

It's only the default, you can just change it to 4k manually and upgrade yourself. I did it because a lot of the videos I watch are 60 fps games which is not available at the default and it's unwatchable at 30 fps.

It doesn't reset for the next video either.

Well it seems like they did that already...

By SuperKendall • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

YouTube will reduce the quality of videos around the world starting Tuesday

From what I've seen the quality of videos on YouTube is already pretty darn low, I don't see how it can go any....

Oh you mean BITRATE. Nevermind.

Re:If we had ipv6

By Retired ICS • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

No. You are confusing multicast and/or broadcast with the IP version. In any case, the answer is no.

Re:If we had ipv6

By Junta • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Both IPv4 and IPv6 have multicast.

At one point is was viewed as a potential strategy to bring radio/television style video/audio streaming to the internet.

However, multicast IP offered very little advantage over TV/radio, and unicast services that enabled the end user to pick whatever content, whenever they wanted prevailed. It also suffered due to complex strategies to recover lost packets (or else deal with a lossy stream, again a problem that if present would fail to do better than tv/radio).

Peer to peer unicast with significant data caching has a better shot of scaling well (e.g. bittorrent), but by and large this usage has not been seen much in legal streaming, since control is much easier when the distribution is done traditionally.

Nowadays, multicast is pretty much only useful for certain small packets. It is used more in IPv6 than IPv4 (e.g. ARP is broadcast, NDP in IPv6 is multicast) though it still is rarely ever routed and in *most* network segments degrades to broadcast (yes, equipment can and is configured upon occasion to snoop IGMP for IPv4 and MLD for IPv6 to have ethernet pattern follow the IP multicast pattern, but it's relatively rare because it is error prone and not worth it for the small infrequent packets that use it).

Re:If we had ipv6

By Anubis IV • Score: 4 • Thread

If we had ipv6 standard

IPv6 is standard. You can already use it, today, to connect to YouTube.

then wouldn't video services be able to send a data stream with multiple recipients

That idea is known as "multicast", and is entirely orthogonal to any discussion about the distinctions between IPv4 and IPv6. IP multicast already exists and works in both IPv4 and IPv6, but it isn't nearly as useful as you think for this sort of thing.

instead of duplicating data streams for each user?

If each viewer is watching the "same video" but starts it at different times of day, views it in different resolutions/framerates, or watches different parts, they still each need their own stream. Multicast is really only useful if everyone is consuming the exact same content at the exact same time, such as when you're dealing with live video. Unfortunately, for recorded videos, which make up the bulk of YouTube viewing, multicast doesn't do you any good whatsoever.

Moreover, even when you're dealing with live streaming, while the stream may not be duplicated in multicast (i.e. there's "one stream"), the data still gets duplicated so that each person receives their own copy (how else do you think that the bits get to their device, after all? they don't magically appear, so of course they're duplicated), so bandwidth consumption won't be significantly affected. Multicast simplifies that process from a logical perspective, but it doesn't change the fact that—under the hood—the data is still getting duplicated just like you'd expect.

The proper way to reduce bandwidth consumption is with a CDN (content delivery network), which is exactly what YouTube is already using. A CDN lets you have a single stream that makes the expensive traversal across most of the Internet, which then branches into multiple streams for each viewer only in the last few miles, thus ensuring that any congestion is kept local, rather than spanning the whole Internet. Theoretically, multicast could do the same, but it wouldn't without a lot of complication because there's nothing forcing each user's connection to go through a local node. Of course, CDNs (unlike multicasting to individual users) also allow content to be buffered for later, meaning that people who view the same content hours apart will only need to make the short hop to the nearest CDN node, rather than the big hop to the canonical location of the file.

(Aside: I seem to recall hearing that YouTube uses multicast to deliver content to their CDN nodes, so I do want to acknowledge that multicast is relevant to YouTube, but their usage—to distribute identical content to nodes within a closed network—is practically the poster child for when you should consider using multicast, whereas the use you're espousing—distributing varied content to devices across an open network—is a case example of when not to use it.)

All of which is to say, YouTube is already built the way it should be to keep bandwidth consumption low across the Internet's central lines. Doesn't change the fact that there's still a lot of people watching YouTube.

Google, LG, Don't Want Qualcomm's Super-Expensive Flagship Processor Snapdragon 865, Reports Say

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Google and South Korean tech major LG are likely to skip the top tier Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 platform this year for their smartphones as the cost of the chipset is too high, a report claimed. From a report: The Pixel 5 and Pixel 5 XL don't actually use Qualcomm's flagship Snapdragon 865 as per the Android code base. Both are running the Snapdragon 765G, a chip that's one step down from the 865 in Qualcomm's lineup. There isn't actually a Snapdragon 865 Google phone in the Android repository, ArsTechnica reported on Monday. LG is taking a similar approach to its 2020 flagship, the LG G9 ThinQ: instead of shipping the Snapdragon 865, the company is also opting for the cheaper 765G, according to website Naver.

Re: SBC with them and open-source them

By doconnor • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

The articles says the main problem is that the this chip has no on board modem, wouldn't be an issue for a Single Board Computer.


By Tx • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Oh, they'll still sell their phones for $800, it's just about the profit margin. But Xiaomi can somehow sell an 865 phone for $425, so you'd think there's enough margin there.

Circular reference

By williamyf • Score: 3 • Thread

The NDTV report has it's source at arstechnica. what's even more, the arstechnica report (which I read yesterday) is an opinion piece, that ndtv qualifies as a "report".

Yay for online journalism

Makes no sense

By Gabest • Score: 3 • Thread

If you try to estimate the BOM cost of a $1000+ phone, these chips costs more than a high end desktop CPU.

I'm actually fine with this

By eclectro • Score: 3 • Thread

App developers will have to streamline their bloated apps rather than just count on more horsepower showing up to cure their ills.

India Under Lockdown for 21 Days To Fight Coronavirus

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Tuesday the government would impose a nationwide lockdown from midnight for 21 days to stem the spread of the coronavirus. "There will be a total ban on venturing out of your homes," Modi said in a televised address.

Re:Where to the homeless go?

By ron_ivi • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
In Oakland CA, the city partnered with hotels to help the homeless shelter in place.

It's not like the hotels are overbooked right now.

Lockdowns are the perfect solution

By WoodstockJeff • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

If people die in spite of them, it was because "local officials did not enforce it enough."

If people survive in spite of them, it was because "we moved quickly, so don't argue next time we impose one."

If people are found dead in their homes because they obeyed and didn't go out to get food, it's because "we need to improve our social welfare system, so don't complain when we boost your taxes."

A friend in the Philippines is up against this sort of thing. Places to buy food are on the OTHER SIDE of the checkpoint you can't pass through without a pass. The place where you can apply for a pass is on the OTHER SIDE of the checkpoint you can't pass through without a pass. The ATM you have to visit to get money to pay for things like food, passes, and bribes is on the OTHER SIDE of the checkpoint you can't get through without a pass.

Not to mention the electricity needed to refrigerate fresh foods is intermittent at best. At least their well has a hand pump.

Re:Doesn't seem to be any details

By Admiral Krunch • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

he literally got on TV and said "You're all going into lockdown, that will be all".

He didn't say just that

"I request you to remain wherever you are in this country. In view of the current situation, the lockdown shall be enforced for 21 days, which means the next 21 days are crucial for us,” Modi continued.

These are the essential services that will be operational:
Health services
Fire services
Municipal services.


By vu2tve • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
Speaking as an Indian, I am nomally not a fan of our PM, However, so far, the steps he has taken have been correct and timely. I am residing in a semi-rural district in North India, and it is REALLY strange to see the police actually do their job. They are going door to door, even to houses in the middle of large fields, tracking down every single person with any travel history, domestic or international. Our healthcare systems are nowhere near the west both in standards and capacity, so if widespread community transmission happens, we're fucked. So it is best to act pre-emptively, excessively. I for one, applaud this decision, and reserve my hatred for Modi for another day.

No Robocalls for 3 weeks, YAY!!!!

By vfxman • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
No fake Microsoft support calls, no IRS agents coming to put me in jail. No virus cleaners for $400.00. Life is good!!

Warmer Weather May Slow, But Not Halt, Coronavirus

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Communities living in warmer places appear to have a comparative advantage to slow the transmission of coronavirus infections, according to an early analysis by scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. From a report: The researchers found that most coronavirus transmissions had occurred in regions with low temperatures, between 37.4 and 62.6 degrees Fahrenheit (or 3 and 17 degrees Celsius). While countries with equatorial climates and those in the Southern Hemisphere, currently in the middle of summer, have reported coronavirus cases, regions with average temperatures above 64.4 degrees Fahrenheit (or 18 degrees Celsius) account for fewer than 6 percent of global cases so far. "Wherever the temperatures were colder, the number of the cases started increasing quickly," said Qasim Bukhari, a computational scientist at M.I.T. who is a co-author of the study. "You see this in Europe, even though the health care there is among the world's best."

Re:Southern Emisphere

By DontBeAMoran • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Since they have upside-down antibodies, it may confuse COVID-19 long enough that they may have a fighting chance.

Re:Its probably not so much the heat

By Mashiki • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Unless of course you're under orders to stay at home.

Still need to get outside. Remember they found that with the Spanish Flu, even getting seriously ill people outside for 20 minutes a day made a huge improvement on their outlook and recovery. Enough that it was made mandatory at the indoor and outdoor hospitals.

Re:Seems like a weak effect

By Admiral Krunch • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Obviously many factors are involved in the spread should be the message. The idea that warm temperatures would “kill” the virus has been repeated without evidence by certain people including here on this site.

It comes from the highest authority. This thing will miraculously disappear by April.
Suck it up people, only 1 more week...

Re:Its probably not so much the heat

By reboot246 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
I've been outside to cut the grass and trim the bushes. There was not another human being within two or three hundred yards. What's the danger? Besides, getting outside in the sun is great for vitamin D production and you need vitamin D for your immune system.

Go outside. Just stay away from people. Assume everybody you see is infected and act accordingly.

Re:The connection to Covid-19 is ...

By cayenne8 • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Save older lives in the short term and kill younger generations in th long term?

OK Boomer.

Hey, we brought you into this world....

We'll take you out....


Mozilla Launches New Initiative With Scroll To Fund Publishers

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Firefox, the global web browser from Mozilla, is launching a new subscription product Tuesday called the "Firefox Better Web initiative," and it will feature former Chartbeat CEO Tony Haile's new product Scroll as a launch partner. From a report: It's uncommon for a web browser to launch a product that's explicitly tied to paying out publishers. Scroll's business is all about paying publishers for their content while giving users a better ad experience. The test pilot for the product, which is a subscription to a privacy-first Firefox extension, will only be available in the U.S. The money from a membership ($4.99 monthly, $2,99 for first six months) goes directly to fund publishers and writers.

Good idea, wrong organisation to implement it

By xonen • Score: 3 • Thread

While the idea is right and possibly a valid alternative for advertisements, i do not like that Mozilla is on the chair of organizing such, simply because this makes them not an independent party but a money collector for publishers.

Let's see what our options are now: Chrome - comes from an advertising company. Edge - comes from a spyware company. Mozilla - in bed with publishers. Opera - do they even still exist. What remains are some open source initiatives, typically forks from Firefox.

I see a future for an independent organization that makes a browser. Much like Mozilla once was in the past, but with no financial ties to the big players. And yes Mozilla, if you read you can't be trusted by what i'm writing, you're reading it right.


By BrendaEM • Score: 3 • Thread
The original Firefox took 4.5 megs to download. The current versions take 48.9 megabyte to download. I want a browser, and that's it.

"giving users a better ad experience"?

By Bradmont • Score: 3 • Thread

"giving users a better ad experience"? Just about the only way to do that is to not experience ads... and I already have an extension to do that...

Meaningless article link

By MobyDisk • Score: 3 • Thread

The article is absolute clickbait, says absolutely nothing, and every single link on the page is a tracker. The URLs are stuff like I have no clue what Scroll is, but whatever it is looks like the antithesis of the "open web" Mozilla claims to stand for.

Mozilla's announcement is more informative

By pavon • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Agreed. That article is complete shit. Here is mozilla's announcement of the program.

Sounds decent to me. No ads, no tracking, publishers get paid. I subscribe to a few sites I visit regularly, but I'd much rather have a Netflix-like all you can eat subscription to help support the sites I visit occasionally than to have to deal with paywalls or leave them high-and-dry because I use a tracking blocker.

Labs Are Euthanizing Thousands of Mice In Response To Coronavirus Pandemic

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
sciencehabit writes: Science Magazine has learned that researchers across the U.S. are euthanizing thousands of lab mice in anticipation of a shortage of workers who can care for them. Some scientists have had to sacrifice half or more of their colonies, potentially resulting in the loss of months or years of work. "I was staring at my mice one by one and deciding who lives and who dies," says one researcher. "It was really rough." At the moment, Science has not seen evidence that larger animals such as cats, dogs, or monkeys are being proactively euthanized. That will likely remain the case. Unlike larger animals, mice breed quickly and must be used quickly. And because they comprise about 95% of all research animals, they suck up the most money and time.

Too broad of a stroke there

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
I have a PhD in biochemistry. I've worked in mouse labs, I've worked in yeast labs, I've worked in E coli labs, I've worked in human cell culture labs, and now I work in a plant lab. The fact you suggest that we "make them suffer fog [sic] a long time" shows you don't know what is actually going on.

To even be approved to do mouse work at any US university (and most other countries as well) you have to clear many hurdles first:
  • You have to show that you can't do the work with a simpler system (including cell culture)
  • You have to have a plan in place for caring for the animals, including feeding them, handling waste, and handling their remains
  • You have to have either trained people on your staff or at your facility who can monitor their well-being
  • You have to have your methods reviewed by a DVM and an ethics board
  • You have to use the most humane euthanasia technique possible for your methods

You can't just let the animals suffer, even if they are mice; you'll never get approval or funding to do so. Even though mice get the least attention from regulatory inspectors they still count at the institutional level. When I was in the mouse lab we had a special facility in the (rather small) school that was dedicated to mice; grad students were absolutely not allowed in without a post-doc, faculty member, or DVM accompanying them. Each animal was accounted for, birth to death. Each cage had to be paid for by the PI all the way through and no animals were allowed to be acquired or birthed unless the supplies were already ready for them.

Animal Shelters

By LatencyKills • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
Offtopic, but I volunteer at a local animal shelter. She have a good shelter with many volunteers, and even we're starting to struggle to fill all time slots with people to care for the animals, and COVID is just getting rolling in my area. I'm a little queasy at the thought of what shelters which ordinarily struggle for volunteers might have to do, or what the future at my shelter might look like.


By Rei • Score: 3 • Thread

Such a poor criteria for deciding who gets to remain open, rather than "risk of disease transmission". And one that's subject to arbitrary political whims. In the bay area, marijuana dispensaries are declared "essential". Gotta keep people lining up to get their pot, after all. In Ontario, new car dealerships are declared "essential" - not just their repair shops, but the whole dealerships.

Totally different here; here, places are shut down based on disease risk. Which is a huge incentive for businesses to take steps to reduce their risk of disease transfer. The other day, for example, I ordered a vinyl wrap from a small printing company. Surely anyone would declare such a company to be nonessential. Yet it's run by a guy working by himself. He took my order online. I showed up for him to measure the hood - I didn't need to be anywhere near him. He'll only be touching the hood when he wraps it, and never getting inside the vehicle. Why exactly should this be banned, unless hurting the economy is the goal? For me, delaying this purchase would be a minor inconvenience, but for him, it's his livelihood. What buys him food and pays his rent.

These sorts of things are not a significant means of disease transmission outside of the household. That's things like parties, public transit, crowded restaurants / bar / shops / etc, dense lines, and so forth, which put people in close contact with numerous random people for long periods. Where businesses are fundamentally incompatible with social distancing - to pick an example, hair salons - yes, this can mean forcing shutdowns. For others - restaurants, theatres, stores, etc - business as usual is too dangerous, but with significantly reduced capacity and employee hygiene measures, spread can be reduced to minimal levels. Public transit may need to (in addition to additional cleaning costs) reduce capacity and/or shift traffic to lower-demand times, which may require prioritizing certain riders and may potentially indirectly disrupt businesses as a result - but indirect disruption is a different topic than specifically-ordered shutdowns. And while governments may be hesitant to enforce against private gatherings, as major sources of the spread of disease, enforcing against them is very important, because they're major sources of spread between groups.

The goal should be to disrupt life as little as possible while disrupting transmission to the maximal extent. These "some arbitrary politician declares certain companies essential or nonessential while doing little concerning things that are actually serious sources of spread" policies are... not that. Yes, it is a way to reduce spread, but a very economically inefficient one relative to how much spread you reduce.


By sheph • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
Well it's only going to work against Trump if nobody knows. But the cat's out of the bag. He's trying to pass a relief bill and the democrats are holding it up by trying to cram every special interest objective they can into it. Corporate boards to determine if the right number of transsexuals are represented in leadership probably isn't what we need to solve this crisis. Even the democrats are going to come to realize that.

What are we going to do tonight Brain?

By Nkwe • Score: 3 • Thread
The same thing we do every night Pinky, try to

HP Teases 'Next Gen' VR Headset Made With Microsoft and Valve's Help

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
HP is teasing a Reverb G2 VR headset developed in tandem with Microsoft and Valve that should be "more immersive, comfortable and compatible" than previous-generation hardware. Engadget reports: The first Reverb wasn't a revolution in design, but it did stand out with a sharp 2,160 x 2,160 pixels per eye. It won't be surprising if HP pursues bragging rights once again, especially when its Twitter teaser claims the new Reverb is the "next benchmark" in VR gear. We wouldn't count on Valve dramatically influencing the design given that the Index remains its pride and joy, though. The new Reverb may be more gamer-friendly, but this is still likely to be aimed as much at professionals as it is enthusiasts.

And knowing HP

By Opportunist • Score: 3 • Thread

It will come with a 100gb driver and require new ink for 50 bucks every other day.

Star Wars: Tatooine Was Likely Orbiting In the Same Plane As Its Twin Suns

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
The Bad Astronomer writes: A new study of very young binary stars shows that exoplanets orbiting them (circumbinary planets) will orbit in the same plane as the stars if the two stars are relatively close together. If the stars are farther apart, the planets may have a perpendicular (polar) orbit around them. This study looked at the protoplanetary disks of dust and gas around binaries to draw this conclusion. Extrapolating to fiction, this means Tatooine in Star Wars was coplanar with its host stars.

Tatooine tilt?

By war4peace • Score: 3 • Thread

Someone (not me, I suck at this) could then calculate Tatooine's tilt based on sunset images from the movies?

why talk about Tatooine

By aRTeeNLCH • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
Why talk about Tatooine, it was such a long time ago, so far away.

Before JJ and others ruined the whole thing, I mean...

Star Wars? Yuck.

By Stoutlimb • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Give it a rest, Star Wars is dead. All the fan loyalty has been wasted.

Yeah but that was a long time ago

By MrKaos • Score: 3 • Thread

in a galaxy far far away and I've changed now.

Tomato3s and Celery Stalks

By buravirgil • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread
Despite their discovery a century and a score ago, binary stars weren't prominent in film and TV that I recall. In 1977, the choice was one of a thousand details to follow Jaws in 1975 that ampliflied the expectations of a summer film. The term "blockbuster" comes from those two films, I thought. Their combined success was another of the cycle of "disruption" to the steady-state Aether of the studio system. That's the film studies dogma, anyways.

Lucas' indulgence of attribution is a boys' club camaraderie that emerges years later. For example the opening crawl was not simply inspiration from the cinema of his childhood, but according to De Palma (I think it is), Lucas' acceptance of criticism the opening was too confusing for too long and some framing was necessary. Lucas extended this claim of inspiration from serial Saturday movie houses to why he had conceived 9 Chapters.

To blow up another death star in Chapter 6.

So, yeah, he lies a lot. He's a filmmaker. Know any successful ones? They lie a lot. Their success resonates and everyone wants explanation when film is one of the most collaborative enterprises known to man except war, or so Cecile B. DeMille said. A simple answer is preferred over the details of actuality. Marcia Lucas' deference to Lucas' authorship is a humility approaching the privilege of Lucas' father's generation.

All Lucas knew for sure was the reveal of a hero and villain being the dutch word for father obscured by a Germanic-sounding title-- the commonly exercised examination of how power is generational, a twist on redemption as ancient as the opening crawl plainly states. It's the same all over?

As a kid, the binary stars...I simply hadn't seen on the big screen and their anomaly evoked awe and Astronomy went from block drawings of Galileo and Newton and a diminishing memory of Moon landings to...Sagan, with Spock somewhere between. It made Astronomy as cool as sports.

When I read much later how filmmakers echo one another (the Kurosawa and Hashimoto connection), of how cross-cultural art is whether it's music (Beatles & Beach Boys) and painters...well, copying each other is expected to even join their conversations.

I liked the articles. I liked the science standing on the shoulders of previous observations. Most overnight posters are like, I dunno, throwing tomato3s and celery stalks at Melies adaptation of Verne's story and howling about production values.