Sci-Fi Is Still Working on Its 'Stale, Male, and Pale' Problem, Says James Cameron

3 months 2 weeks ago
An anonymous reader shares a report: As science fiction finally earns mainstream acceptance in Hollywood, James Cameron believes the genre's awards drought will soon be over. "I predict that sometime in the next five to 10 years you will have a science-fiction film win Best Picture," he told reporters while promoting "AMC Visionaries: James Cameron's Story of Science Fiction," which premieres Monday. Films like "Arrival" and "Ex-Machina" have earned nominations, but as the older guard ages out of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Cameron believes that the membership's "prejudice" against sci-fi -- which he says "definitely exists" -- will fade. "They're definitely a red-headed stepchild when it comes to the acting, producing, directing categories," he said. "Science fiction is kind of a commercial genre, it's not really an elevated dramatic genre. I would argue that until I'm blue in the face that science fiction is the quintessence of being human in a sense. We are technological beings. We are the only truly conscious species that we know of. We are struggling with ourselves over the issue of our own question for understanding, our own ability to manipulate the fabric of our reality. Our own technology is blowing back on us and changing how we behave amongst ourselves and as a civilization," he added. "I would argue that there's nothing more quintessentially human than dealing with these themes. But Hollywood tends to pull short from that." But as Hollywood changes its perception of science fiction, Cameron stressed that the genre itself needs to continue to evolve from its origins of being too "stale, male and pale." "It was white guys talking about rockets," Cameron said of early sci-fi. "The female authors didn't come into it until the '50s and '60s and a lot of them had to operate under pseudonyms." But even now, "women are still unrepresented in science fiction as they are in Hollywood in general," he said. "When 14 percent of all film directors in the industry are female, and they represent 50 percent of the population, that's a big delta there that needs to get rectified."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Great Barrier Reef Gets $379 Million Boost After Coral Dies Off

3 months 2 weeks ago
The Great Barrier Reef is being given a $379 million boost by Australia in the battle to save the world's largest living structure as it faces mounting challenges such as climate change, agricultural runoff and a coral-eating starfish. From a report: "Like reefs all over the world, the Great Barrier Reef is under pressure," Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said in a statement on Sunday, calling the funding the largest granted to the famous tourist icon. "A big challenge demands a big investment -- and this investment gives our reef the best chance." [...] The new funding comes after Deloitte Access Economics valued the reef last year at A$56 billion, based on an asset supporting tens of thousands of jobs and which contributes A$6.4 billion a year to the economy. Still, that was before a study released this month in Nature showed about 30 percent of the reef, which is bigger than Japan, died off in 2016 during an extended marine heatwave.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Man Sues Nation For Allegedly Seizing France.com, a Domain He Has Owned For Over 20 Years

3 months 2 weeks ago
A French-born American has now sued his home country because, he claims, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has illegally seized a domain that he's owned since 1994: France.com. From a report: In the mid-1990s, Jean-Noel Frydman bought France.com from Web.com and set up a website to serve as a "digital kiosk" for Francophiles and Francophones in the United States. For over 20 years, Frydman built up a business (also known as France.com), often collaborating with numerous official French agencies, including the Consulate General in Los Angeles and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. However, sometime around 2015, that very same ministry initiated a lawsuit in France in an attempt to wrest control of the France.com domain away from Frydman. Web.com locked the domain, and Frydman even roped in the Berkman Klein Center at Harvard Law School to intervene on his behalf. By September 2017, the Paris Court of Appeals ruled that France.com was violating French trademark law. Armed with this ruling, lawyers representing the French state wrote to Web.com demanding that the domain be handed over. Finally, on March 12, 2018, Web.com abruptly transferred ownership of the domain to the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The company did so without any formal notification to Frydman and no compensation. "I'm probably [one of Web.com's] oldest customers," Frydman told ArsTechnica. "I've been with them for 24 years... There's never been any cases against France.com, and they just did that without any notice. I've never been treated like that by any company anywhere in the world. If it happened to me, it can happen to anyone."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

GPU Prices Are Falling

3 months 2 weeks ago
An anonymous reader shares a report: If you were looking for a new graphics card for your PC over the last year, your search probably ended with you giving up and slinging some cusses at cryptocurrency miners. But now the supply of video cards is on the verge of rebounding, and I don't think you should wait much longer to pull the trigger on a purchase. Earlier this week, Digitimes reported that GPU vendors like Gigabyte, MSI, and others were expecting to see their card shipments plummet 40 percent month-over-month. The market for digital currencies like Bitcoin and Etherum is losing some of its momentum, and at the same time, large mining operations are pulling back on their investment in GPUs in anticipation of dedicated mining rigs (called ASICs) that are due out before the end of the year. These factors working in conjunction seem like they are leading to more supply, which in turn is forcing retailers to cut prices. For example, the Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 video card is selling on Amazon right now for $700. Other retailers even have it listed at the original MSRP of $600. These are the lowest prices of 2018 so far.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Google Cofounder Sergey Brin Warns of AI's Dark Side

3 months 2 weeks ago
Google co-founder Sergey Brin has warned that the current boom in artificial intelligence has created a "technology renaissance" that contains many potential threats. In the company's annual Founders' Letter, the Alphabet president struck a note of caution. "The new spring in artificial intelligence is the most significant development in computing in my lifetime," writes Brin. "Every month, there are stunning new applications and transformative new techniques." But, he adds, "such powerful tools also bring with them new questions and responsibilities." From a report: When Google was founded in 1998, Brin writes, the machine learning technique known as artificial neural networks, invented in the 1940s and loosely inspired by studies of the brain, was "a forgotten footnote in computer science." Today the method is the engine of the recent surge in excitement and investment around artificial intelligence. The letter unspools a partial list of where Alphabet uses neural networks, for tasks such as enabling self-driving cars to recognize objects, translating languages, adding captions to YouTube videos, diagnosing eye disease, and even creating better neural networks. Brin nods to the gains in computing power that have made this possible. He says the custom AI chip running inside some Google servers is more than a million times more powerful than the Pentium II chips in Google's first servers. In a flash of math humor, he says that Google's quantum computing chips might one day offer jumps in speed over existing computers that can be only be described with the number that gave Google its name, a googol, or a 1 followed by 100 zeroes. As you might expect, Brin expects Alphabet and others to find more uses for AI. But he also acknowledges that the technology brings possible downsides. "Such powerful tools also bring with them new questions and responsibilities," he writes. AI tools might change the nature and number of jobs, or be used to manipulate people, Brin says -- a line that may prompt readers to think of concerns around political manipulation on Facebook. Safety worries range from "fears of sci-fi style sentience to the more near-term questions such as validating the performance of self-driving cars," Brin writes.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Movements of Pedestrians and Vehicles in Inner-city Liverpool To Be Captured by Cameras and Smartphones To Help Local Council Map Potential Tweaks To Streets

3 months 2 weeks ago
Jacob Saulwick, reporting for The Sydney Morning Herald: The movement of pedestrians and vehicles in inner-city Liverpool will be captured by upgraded CCTV cameras and smartphones. The project, part-funded by the federal government's $50 million "Smart Cities" program, aims to help the local council map potential tweaks to streets and planning rules, in an area undergoing rapid development. "It gives us the opportunity to be more experimental in our CBD to get better outcomes for the people using it," the chief executive of Liverpool City Council, Kiersten Fishburn, said. The street grid of downtown Liverpool was laid out in 1827 by Robert Hoddle, who would go on to survey and plot Melbourne's distinctive grid. And Liverpool is changing fast, with a proposed local environment plan to allow denser and residential development around the inner city, as well as the opening of University of Wollongong and Western Sydney University campuses.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Blue Origin Launches Its First Test Flight of 2018

3 months 2 weeks ago
After several delays on Sunday morning, a Blue Origin New Shepard rocket blasted off from the west Texas desert just after noon Central Daylight Time, sending a crew capsule carrying a dummy named "Mannequin Skywalker" on a brief trip to space. For the eighth time, Jeff Bezos' commercial space company successfully tested the system it hopes to use to send paying passengers on suborbital flights in the coming months. From a report: The rocket reached a maximum altitude of 350,000 feet during the test flight, which took roughly 10 minutes from liftoff to the rocket and capsule touchdowns. This test marks the first test flight of the New Shepard system in 2018. The launch of the capsule and rocket was the eighth overall test flight of New Shepard, and the second time this rocket and capsule have flown to suborbital space together. The capsule also carried "Mannequin Skywalker," the test dummy outfitted with sensors used by Blue Origin to give flight engineers a sense of what a person might experience during a flight to space aboard the New Shepard. Eventually, Bezos hopes that New Shepard will take paying customers up about 100 kilometers into the air, where they will experience weightlessness and be able to see the Earth against the blackness of space before the capsule falls back to the ground under parachutes. But Bezos' ambition stretches far beyond sending tourists to suborbital space. Blue Origin also has plans to build larger rockets that will be able to send big payloads and crews of people to orbit and beyond.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Sprint, T-Mobile Agree To Combine in a $26.5 Billion Merger

3 months 2 weeks ago
T-Mobile and Sprint said on Sunday that they have agreed to combine in a $26.5 billion merger, creating a wireless giant to compete against industry leaders AT&T and Verizon. From a report: Deutsche Telekom AG, the Bonn, Germany-based company that controls T-Mobile, and SoftBank Group, the Tokyo-based owner of Sprint, agreed to a combination that values each Sprint share at 0.10256 of a T-Mobile share, the companies said in a statement Sunday. That ratio values Sprint at $6.62 a share based on T-Mobile's Friday closing price of $64.52. The new company will use the T-Mobile name, with T-Mobile's John Legere as chief executive officer and Mike Sievert at chief operating officer. The German company's chairman, Tim Hoettges, will serve in that role at the combined company, and the board will include SoftBank Chief Executive Officer Masayoshi Son. The companies said they expect synergies of about $43 billion, with more than $6.5 billion on a run-rate basis.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

North Korea's Leader Kim Jong-un Says He'll Give Up Weapons if US Promises Not to Invade

3 months 2 weeks ago
Several readers have shared a report: North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-un, told President Moon Jae-in of South Korea when they met that he would abandon his nuclear weapons if the United States would agree to formally end the Korean War and promise that it would not invade his country, a South Korean government spokesman said Sunday. In a faith-building gesture ahead of a summit meeting with President Trump, Mr. Kim also said he would invite experts and journalists from South Korea and the United States to watch the shutdown next month of his country's only known underground nuclear test site. The comments by Mr. Kim were made on Friday when the leaders of the two Koreas met at Panmunjom, a village on their shared border, the spokesman, Yoon Young-chan, said on Sunday, providing additional details of the meeting. "I know the Americans are inherently disposed against us, but when they talk with us, they will see that I am not the kind of person who would shoot nuclear weapons to the south, over the Pacific or at the United States," Mr. Kim told Mr. Moon, according to Mr. Yoon's account of the meeting. It was another dramatically conciliatory statement by Mr. Kim, whose country threatened to do exactly those things during the height of nuclear tensions last year.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

A Mass of Copyrighted Works Will Soon Enter the Public Domain

3 months 2 weeks ago
For the first time in two decades, a huge number of books, films, and other works will escape U.S. copyright law. From a report: The Great American Novel enters the public domain on January 1, 2019 -- quite literally. Not the concept, but the book by William Carlos Williams. It will be joined by hundreds of thousands of other books, musical scores, and films first published in the United States during 1923. It's the first time since 1998 for a mass shift to the public domain of material protected under copyright. It's also the beginning of a new annual tradition: For several decades from 2019 onward, each New Year's Day will unleash a full year's worth of works published 95 years earlier. This coming January, Charlie Chaplin's film The Pilgrim and Cecil B. DeMille's The 10 Commandments will slip the shackles of ownership, allowing any individual or company to release them freely, mash them up with other work, or sell them with no restriction. This will be true also for some compositions by Bela Bartok, Aldous Huxley's Antic Hay, Winston Churchill's The World Crisis, Carl Sandburg's Rootabaga Pigeons, E.E. Cummings's Tulips and Chimneys, Noel Coward's London Calling! musical, Edith Wharton's A Son at the Front, many stories by P.G. Wodehouse, and hosts upon hosts of forgotten works, according to research by the Duke University School of Law's Center for the Study of the Public Domain. Throughout the 20th century, changes in copyright law led to longer periods of protection for works that had been created decades earlier, which altered a pattern of relatively brief copyright protection that dates back to the founding of the nation. This came from two separate impetuses. First, the United States had long stood alone in defining copyright as a fixed period of time instead of using an author's life plus a certain number of years following it, which most of the world had agreed to in 1886. Second, the ever-increasing value of intellectual property could be exploited with a longer term. But extending American copyright law and bringing it into international harmony meant applying "patches" retroactively to work already created and published. And that led, in turn, to lengthy delays in copyright expiring on works that now date back almost a century.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Microsoft Attempts To Spin Its Role in Counterfeiting Case

3 months 2 weeks ago
Eric Lundgren, who has spent his life working on e-waste recycling programs, was arrested and charged with "counterfeiting" Microsoft restore discs earlier this week, part of a controversial, years-long legal fight that ended when an appeals court declined to overturn a lower court's decision. Lundgren argued that what he was offering is only recovery CDs loaded with data anyone can download for free. In an interview with The Verge, he said, "Look, these are restore CDs, there's no licenses, you can download them for free online, they're given to you for free with your computer. The only way that you can use them is [if] you have a license, and Microsoft has to validate it.?" Lundgren was going to sell them to repair shops for a quarter each so they could hand them out to people who needed them. Shortly after the Lundgren's was arrested, Microsoft published a blog post which stridently disagrees with Lundgren's characterization of the case. From a report: "We are sharing this information now and responding publicly because we believe both Microsoft's role in the case and the facts themselves are being misrepresented," the company wrote. But it carefully avoids the deliberate misconception about software that it promulgated in court. That misconception, which vastly overstated Lundgren's crime and led to the sentence he received, is simply to conflate software with a license to operate that software. [...] Hardly anyone even makes these discs any more, certainly not Microsoft, and they're pretty much worthless without a licensed copy of the OS in the first place. But Microsoft convinced the judges that a piece of software with no license or product key -- meaning it won't work properly, if at all -- is worth the same as one with a license. [...] Anyway, the company isn't happy with the look it has of sending a guy to prison for stealing something with no value to anyone but someone with a bum computer and no backup. It summarizes what it thinks are the most important points as follows, with my commentary following the bullets. Microsoft did not bring this case: U.S. Customs referred the case to federal prosecutors after intercepting shipments of counterfeit software imported from China by Mr. Lundgren. This is perfectly true, however Microsoft has continually misrepresented the nature and value of the discs, falsely claiming that they led to lost sales. That's not possible, of course, since Microsoft gives the contents of these discs away for free. It sells licenses to operate Windows, something you'd have to have already if you wanted to use the discs in the first place. Lundgren went to great lengths to mislead people: His own emails submitted as evidence in the case show the lengths to which Mr. Lundgren went in an attempt to make his counterfeit software look like genuine software. They also show him directing his co-defendant to find less discerning customers who would be more easily deceived if people objected to the counterfeits. Printing an accurate copy of a label for a disc isn't exactly "great lengths." Early on the company in China printed "Made in USA" on the disc and "Made in Canada" on the sleeve, and had a yellow background when it should have been green -- that's the kind of thing he was fixing.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Foxconn Will Drain 7 Million Gallons of Water Per Day From Lake Michigan to Make LCD Screens

3 months 2 weeks ago
Earlier this week, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources granted permission to Taiwanese tech manufacturer Foxconn, best known for assembling Apple's iPhones, to siphon off seven million gallons of water per day from Lake Michigan, despite protests from conservation groups. From a report: The massive diversion of water from the lake will be used to produce LCD screens at the company's planned $10 billion, 20 million square foot manufacturing plant set to be built in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin. Nearly 2.7 million gallons of the water -- about 39 percent of the daily intake from the factory -- will be lost in the process, primarily from evaporation. The remaining water will be treated and returned to the lake basin. Wisconsin's DNR noted in a statement that the requested withdrawal will "only amount to a 0.07 percent increase in the total surface water withdrawals from Lake Michigan." For environmentalists in the region, the issue is not so much the diversion for the Foxconn factory itself but rather the precedent it will set for how the lake water can be used. "If we allow this to happen, it's going to happen all over the basin, with other states and then it's going to be the thirsty states and nations to come," Jennifer Giegerich, the government affairs director for the Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters, warned during a public hearing about the diversion, according to the Wisconsin Gazette.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

msmash

Can A New HIV Drug Kill The Virus That Causes AIDS?

3 months 2 weeks ago
"A team led by scientists from the University of Hong Kong has developed a new antibody drug that will not only protect people from contracting HIV but also serve as a long-acting treatment for the virus, unlike current medication that must be taken daily." Slashdot reader hackingbear shared this article from the South China Morning Post: There will need to be a further battery of tests before the drug, named "BiIA-SG", can be part of the global battle against the virus, which causes Aids. The research team has so far only tested the drug on mice but is now looking to experiment on larger animals such as monkeys, before conducting clinical trials on humans. Still, Professor Chen Zhiwei, the team leader and director of HKU's Aids Institute, stressed the scientific discovery had yielded "one of the most potent and effective antibody drugs". This is because the study showed that mice given the drug before being infected with HIV were protected from the virus for about a week. In addition, the experiments, which also involved experts from mainland medical and research institutions, found that when mice were infected with HIV before being treated, 42 per cent had an "undetectable level" of the virus for at least four weeks after one injection of antibodies... The tests found that the drug was effective against 124 strains of HIV, including those that are commonly found in infected people from Hong Kong and mainland China.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

EditorDavid

The Pentagon's Ray Gun Can Stall Cars

3 months 2 weeks ago
john of sparta quotes Defense One: The Defense Department's Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Program, or JNLWD, is pushing ahead with a new direct energy weapon that uses high-powered microwaves to stop cars in their tracks without damaging the vehicle, its driver, or anyone else. The jammer works by targeting the car's engine control unit causing it to reboot over and over, stalling the engine. Like an invisible hand, the microwaves hold the car in place. "Anything that has electronics on it, these high-powered microwaves will affect," David Law, who leads JNLWD's technology division, said in March. "As long as the [radio] is on, it holds the vehicle stopped." It weighs 400 pounds -- it's the size of a large copy machine -- and uses 300 kilowatts of power that's generated by a gasoline-powered turbine. "To deploy it, the driver would pull out in front of the attacker and turn it on."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

EditorDavid

New Book Describes 'Bluffing' Programmers in Silicon Valley

3 months 2 weeks ago
Long-time Slashdot reader Martin S. pointed us to this an excerpt from the new book Live Work Work Work Die: A Journey into the Savage Heart of Silicon Valley by Portland-based investigator reporter Corey Pein. The author shares what he realized at a job recruitment fair seeking Java Legends, Python Badasses, Hadoop Heroes, "and other gratingly childish classifications describing various programming specialities." I wasn't the only one bluffing my way through the tech scene. Everyone was doing it, even the much-sought-after engineering talent. I was struck by how many developers were, like myself, not really programmers, but rather this, that and the other. A great number of tech ninjas were not exactly black belts when it came to the actual onerous work of computer programming. So many of the complex, discrete tasks involved in the creation of a website or an app had been automated that it was no longer necessary to possess knowledge of software mechanics. The coder's work was rarely a craft. The apps ran on an assembly line, built with "open-source", off-the-shelf components. The most important computer commands for the ninja to master were copy and paste... [M]any programmers who had "made it" in Silicon Valley were scrambling to promote themselves from coder to "founder". There wasn't necessarily more money to be had running a startup, and the increase in status was marginal unless one's startup attracted major investment and the right kind of press coverage. It's because the programmers knew that their own ladder to prosperity was on fire and disintegrating fast. They knew that well-paid programming jobs would also soon turn to smoke and ash, as the proliferation of learn-to-code courses around the world lowered the market value of their skills, and as advances in artificial intelligence allowed for computers to take over more of the mundane work of producing software. The programmers also knew that the fastest way to win that promotion to founder was to find some new domain that hadn't yet been automated. Every tech industry campaign designed to spur investment in the Next Big Thing -- at that time, it was the "sharing economy" -- concealed a larger programme for the transformation of society, always in a direction that favoured the investor and executive classes. "I wasn't just changing careers and jumping on the 'learn to code' bandwagon," he writes at one point. "I was being steadily indoctrinated in a specious ideology."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

EditorDavid

Can We Fight Climate Change With Carbon-Absorbing Rocks?

3 months 2 weeks ago
The New York Times reports on rocks in the country of Oman that react naturally with carbon dioxide, turning it into stone. Scientists say that if this natural process, called carbon mineralization, could be harnessed, accelerated and applied inexpensively on a huge scale -- admittedly some very big "ifs" -- it could help fight climate change. Rocks could remove some of the billions of tons of heat-trapping carbon dioxide that humans have pumped into the air since the beginning of the Industrial Age. And by turning that CO2 into stone, the rocks in Oman -- or in a number of other places around the world that have similar geological formations -- would ensure that the gas stayed out of the atmosphere forever... Capturing and storing carbon dioxide, is drawing increased interest. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says that deploying such technology is essential to efforts to rein in global warming... At a geothermal power plant in Iceland, after several years of experimentation, an energy company is injecting modest amounts of carbon dioxide into volcanic rock, where it becomes mineralized. Dutch researchers have suggested spreading a kind of crushed rock along coastlines to capture CO2. And scientists in Canada and South Africa are studying ways to use mine wastes, called tailings, to do the same thing. Meanwhile, the Guardian reports an alternate perspective from 86-year-old social scientist Mayer Hillman: "We're doomed." He's predicting the end of most life on the planet, citing the lack of any way to reverse the process that's already melting the polar ice caps. "Optimism about the future is wishful thinking, says Hillman. He believes that accepting that our civilization is doomed could make humanity rather like an individual who recognizes he is terminally ill. Such people rarely go on a disastrous binge; instead, they do all they can to prolong their lives."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

EditorDavid

Oracle Sets End Date for Business Java 8 Updates

3 months 2 weeks ago
An anonymous reader quotes InfoWorld: Further clarifying its ongoing support plans for Java SE 8, Oracle will require businesses to have a commercial license to get updates after January 2019. In an undated bulletin about the revision, Oracle said public updates for Java SE 8 released after January 2019 will not be available for business, commercial, or production use without a commercial license. However, public updates for Java SE 8 will be available for individual, personal use through at least the end of 2020. Oracle advises enterprises to review the Oracle Java SE Support Roadmap to assess support requirements to migrate to a later release or obtain a commercial license... Oracle advises developers to review roadmaps for Java SE 8 and beyond and take appropriate action based on their application and its distribution model.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

EditorDavid

Scientists Confirmed a New DNA Structure Inside Human Cells

3 months 2 weeks ago
Trax3001BBS quotes Science Alert: For the first time, scientists have identified the existence of a new DNA structure never before seen in living cells. The discovery of what's described as a "twisted knot" of DNA in living cells confirms our complex genetic code is crafted with more intricate symmetry than just the double helix structure everybody associates with DNA -- and the forms these molecular variants take affect how our biology functions... "It seems likely that they are there to help switch genes on or off," according to Garvan's Mahdi Zeraati, the first author of the new study, "and to affect whether a gene is actively read or not."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

EditorDavid

Code Published for Triggering a BSOD on Windows Computers -- Even If They're Locked

3 months 2 weeks ago
"A Romanian hardware expert has published proof-of-concept code on GitHub that will crash most Windows computers within seconds, even if the computer is in a locked state," writes BleepingComputer. An anonymous reader quotes their report: The code exploits a vulnerability in Microsoft's handling of NTFS filesystem images and was discovered by Marius Tivadar, a security researcher with Bitdefender. The expert's proof-of-concept code contains a malformed NTFS image that users can take and place on a USB thumb drive. Inserting this USB thumb drive in a Windows computer crashes the system within seconds, resulting in a Blue Screen of Death (BSOD). "Auto-play is activated by default," Tivadar wrote in a PDF document detailing the bug and its impact... Tivadar contacted Microsoft about the issue in July 2017, but published the PoC code today after the OS maker declined to classify the issue as a security bug. Microsoft downgraded the bug's severity because exploiting it requires either physical access or social engineering (tricking the user).

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

EditorDavid

While More People Switch To Streaming TV, Cable Stocks are Plummetting

3 months 2 weeks ago
An anonymous reader quotes Investor's Business Daily: Shares in Charter Communications plunged after the cable TV firm reported first quarter earnings and lost more video subscribers than expected, also sparking a sell-off in Comcast and Altice USA... Charter said it lost 122,000 video subscribers, nearly triple analyst predictions for a fall of 43,000. Comcast on Wednesday said it lost 96,000 video subscribers, exceeding estimates for a drop of 75,000.... With Friday's sell-off, Comcast stock is down 20% in 2018, with Charter falling more than 24%... Cable TV firms aren't the only losers. AT&T this week said it lost 187,000 pay-TV customers, including satellite TV subscribers and its U-verse landline business. AT&T's DirecTV Now internet streaming service added 312,000 customers. But AT&T garners much lower profit margins from video streaming. Cable companies are now raising prices on broadband services to compensate, according to the article. MarketWatch notes that Charter also lost 100,000 customers in the same three-month period in 2017, calling the ongoing trend "a fundamental shift in consumer behavior."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

EditorDavid
Checked
28 minutes 2 seconds ago
News for nerds, stuff that matters
Subscribe to Slashdot_Main feed