posted 10 days ago on ars technica
Leaked e-mails from the Italy-based computer and network surveillance company Hacking Team show that the company developed a piece of rugged hardware intended to attack computers and mobile devices via Wi-Fi. The capability, marketed as part of the company's Remote Control System Galileo, was shown off to defense companies at the International Defense Exposition and Conference (IDEX) in Abu Dhabi in February, and it drew attention from a major defense contractor. But like all such collaborations, it may have gotten caught up in the companies' legal departments. In an e-mail summarizing a meeting in January, co-founder Marco Valleri outlined the roadmap for a number of Hacking Team's platforms, including its "Tactical Network Injector" or TNI. This piece of hardware was designed to insert malicious code into Wi-Fi network communications, potentially acting as a malicious access point to launch exploits or man-in-the-middle attacks. The bullet points included the creation of a "mini-TNI" tasked to Hacking Team employee Andrea Di Pasquale: Ruggedized Transportable by a drone (!) The mini-TNI, marketed at IDEX as "Galileo," drew the attention of a representative from Insitu, a subsidiary of Boeing that builds small unmanned aircraft systems including the ScanEagle and RQ-21A "Blackjack" UASs used by the US Navy. In early April, Giuseppe Venneri—an Insitu intern and a graduate student at University of California, Irvine—was tasked with contacting Hacking Team's key account manager Emad Shehata, following up on a meeting at IDEX. "We see potential in integrating your Wi-Fi hacking capability into an airborne system and would be interested in starting a conversation with one of your engineers to go over, in more depth, the payload capabilities including the detailed size, weight, and power specs of your Galileo System," Venneri wrote. Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 10 days ago on ars technica
On Friday, a wildfire northeast of Los Angeles spread so quickly that it jumped onto I-15 during gridlock, forcing passengers to flee as the flames engulfed their vehicles. But amid the chaos, helicopters were grounded for 20 minutes due to firefighting's most futuristic nuisance—drones. In an incident overview, the US Forest Service wrote that "An Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS or drone) halted tanker operations for about 25 minutes on Friday afternoon, but operations soon resumed.” CNN reports that there were actually five drones in the airspace above the fire, according to a San Bernardino County Fire spokesperson they spoke to. Eric Sherwin of the San Bernardino County Fire Department told CNN, "Fortunately, there were no injuries or fatalities to report, but the 15 to 20 minutes that those helicopters were grounded meant that 15 to 20 minutes were lost that could have led to another water drop cycle, and that would have created a much safer environment and we would not have seen as many citizens running for their lives.” Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 10 days ago on ars technica
You've got to hand it to Japan. For a country that's already brought us the joys of Gaki no Tsukai's "Slap Ball" game, the worryingly edible "Happy Kitchen Candy Hamburgers," and some of the most confusing fast food mascots of all time, it's still got plenty of, uhh, interesting surprises left to wow the world with. Exhibit A: a hotel manned by a robot dinosaur.. The aptly named Henn na (or "Weird Hotel") is located in Japan's Sasebo, Nagasaki. This week it has opened its doors to the public, and everything—from check-in to check-out—is handled entirely by a robot staff. On arrival, guests are greeted by either a Japanese-speaking female humanoid that errs on the creepy side of the uncanny valley or, inexplicably, an English-speaking velociraptor in a bowtie. Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 10 days ago on ars technica
Technology has always been intimately linked to the human body. From sharpened flint to smartphones, we've been carrying our inventions for millennia—but the relationship is about to get even closer. The next generation of electronic devices might not just be near our bodies, they could be powered by them. Staying alive guzzles energy. In order to keep us ticking, our bodies need to burn between 2,000 and 2,500 calories per day, which is conveniently enough to power a modestly used smart phone. So if just a fraction of that energy could be siphoned, our bodies could in theory be used to run any number of electronic devices, from medical implants to electronic contact lenses—all without a battery in sight. Recently, researchers have taken important strides toward unlocking this electric potential. Untapped potential To start, the energy in our bodies exists in various forms. Most of them need some manipulation before they can be used to power an electronic device. But not all do. Read 29 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 11 days ago on ars technica
Only the Android soft buttons and notification bar give away that this isn't actually a Microsoft operating system. ars.AD.queue.push(["xrailTop", {sz:"300x250", kws:[], collapse: true}]);Microsoft promised this May that it was bringing Cortana to iOS and Android, confirming rumors from earlier in the year. The Android version leaked today—there's an APK floating around—and Microsoft has opened up an invitation-only beta to let people test the company's digital personal assistant for themselves, at least if they live in the US or China. To sign up to the beta you'll need one of a handful of recent Android handsets, and a Microsoft account that's linked to the Windows Insider program. In promoting its cross-platform software ambitions, Microsoft has said that its experiences will be mobile, following people from device to device, but best on Windows. The idea here is that Windows 10 users will use and depend on Cortana on their PCs, and hence will want her to be available on their phones, no matter which smartphone platform they use. On Windows and Windows Phone/Windows Mobile, Cortana can in principle be more deeply integrated—enabling, for example, "Hey Cortana" voice-based activation—but on Android and iOS she'll be "just" an app and accordingly constrained. That may be the principle, but for now, at least, Cortana on Android seems to be pretty close to Cortana in Windows 10, Windows Phone, and Windows 10 Mobile. Install the app and she asks for a ton of permissions, including the ability to send and read SMS messages, place calls, access contacts, calendars, and accounts, and more besides. Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 11 days ago on ars technica
I come to both bury Pluto, and to praise it—it being the decision to demote Pluto from the pantheon of planets. In 2006, the International Astronomical Union was faced with a growing collection of small, icy bodies similar in size to Pluto orbiting at the fringes of the Solar System. It settled on a new way of defining what constitutes a planet, one that left Pluto and its peers demoted to dwarf status. The decision triggered outrage that continues unabated, and some have argued that the demotion given science a black eye from the public's perspective. I'm going to argue that Pluto's demotion has actually created a fantastic opportunity to help the public understand the very nature of science itself, and connect it with a new era of discovery for the planetary sciences. But it's only an opportunity; unless the scientific community takes advantage of the chance to communicate, then we risk letting the event be portrayed as the arbitrary killing of a childhood friend. Discovery is a good thing The astronomy community felt compelled to come to terms with Pluto's status as a direct result of its own successes. Driven by digital imaging, automated survey telescopes, and space-based observatories, we have become much more aware of the full diversity of objects orbiting the Sun. Ceres, once dismissed as an asteroid, turns out to have been sufficiently massive for its own gravity to reshape it into a sphere. Eris, the most distant dwarf planet yet found, appears to be both larger and heavier than Pluto. Estimates are that there are dozens to hundreds of additional bodies of this class that we've yet to discover. Read 14 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
A UK man accused of breaking into computer systems operated by the US government has been rearrested on a recently filed extradition request, it has been widely reported. Lauri Love, now 30, was arrested in October 2013 on charges he and associates hacked into networks operated by the US Army, the US Missile Defense Agency, NASA, the Environmental Protection Agency, and other US government agencies. The objective behind the hacking spree, US prosecutors said at the time, was to disrupt the operations and infrastructure of the US government by stealing large amounts of military data and personally identifying information of government employees and military personnel. "You have no idea how much we can fuck with the US government if we wanted to," Love allegedly told a hacking colleague at one point. Following the 2013 arrest, Love was released on bail. Earlier this week, he was rearrested on an extradition warrant on behalf of the US, The Guardian and other news organizations reported. Love's attorney told reporters her client planned to fight the proceedings. Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Making copies of copyrighted music and videos for personal use is again illegal in the UK because of a ruling by the High Court issued today. Today's ruling quashes the 2014 regulation that made it legal to make personal copies of performances for private use as long as the person doing so has lawfully acquired the content and doesn't distribute it to anyone else. That regulation allowed people to make backups or play songs or movies in different formats but didn't allow selling copies or sharing them with family and friends. But the High Court ruled last month that the regulation hadn't been enacted properly. The personal use exception wasn't immediately thrown out because other remedies could have been considered, but today's ruling takes it off the books. Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
"It's Tesla Motors. They've gone to plaid." MGM In a press call on Friday, Tesla Motors founder and CEO Elon Musk announced some upgrades to the performance version of the Model S, specifically “ludicrous mode,” which, for an extra $10,000, will take the car from 0 to 60mph in 2.8 seconds. That's already half-a-second faster than the “McLaren F1-fast” Model S P85D that Ars reviewed in May, which offered an "insane mode." When press asked Musk if he hoped this would generate additional sales for Tesla, Musk responded, “I have no idea. We are just trying to make awesome cars,” according to MarketWatch. (A reporter apparently asked Musk what comes after "ludicrous mode," and he said Tesla watchers won't see that level until the company's next-generation roadster in four years—which will come with "maximum plaid.") In addition, new purchasers of Tesla Model S cars will have the option to upgrade their car with a 90kWh battery pack (up from 85kWh standard) for an extra $3,000. Musk said that this will give the car an additional 15 miles of range at 65mph. MarketWatch said that Musk called the 90kWh battery “important for the Model X SUV,” which is anticipated in the coming year. Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Since its discovery 85 years ago, Pluto has been nothing more than a tiny dot of light. Thanks to NASA’s New Horizons mission, this is no longer the case. After a 9.5 year, 3.5 billion mile journey, a spacecraft the size of a baby grand piano has revolutionized our understanding of the icy world. The first close-up images of the Pluto system are proving to be every bit as exciting as the science team had hoped. Principal investigator Alan Stern said in a media briefing today, “The Solar System definitely saved the best for last.” With the data beamed down so far, everything we can now see of Pluto and its five moons is changing the way planetary scientists view these distant, icy worlds. Not only does Pluto harbor 11,000 ft high mountains composed of frozen water ice, but its surface and the surface of its largest moon, Charon, are surprisingly devoid of large impact craters. This indicates to scientists that both bodies could be geologically active. The mountains—thought to be no more than 100 million years old—are very young compared to the age of the Solar System, and their average height rivals that of the Rocky Mountains found here on Earth. It’s too early to determine how they formed, but their presence was a surprise to scientists. “This is one of the youngest surfaces we’ve ever seen in the Solar System,” said Jeff Moore of the New Horizons Geology, Geophysics, and Imaging Team (GGI) at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California. Read 12 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
A string of weaponized attacks targeting Adobe's Flash media player—including three in the past 10 days—has kept software engineers scrambling to fix the underlying vulnerabilities that make the exploits so dangerous. Fortunately, they have also been busy making structural changes to the way the program interacts with computer operating systems to significantly reduce the damage that can result not only from those specific attacks but entire classes of similar ones. At the moment, the defenses are fully implemented only in the Flash version included in Google Chrome, having made their debut earlier this week. One of the two mitigations is available in other versions of Flash, and the remaining one is expected to be added to other browsers in August. Had they been widely available earlier, they likely would have blunted the effects of at least some of the three most recent zero-day vulnerabilities, which were leaked following the thorough hack of Hacking Team, the malware-as-a-service provider that catered to governments around the world. To block entire classes of new exploits, Adobe engineers, with the help of their counterparts at Google's Project Zero team, have made two key changes. The first, which is currently available only in Chrome, is a new partition added to the heap, which is a large pool of computer memory. The partition isolates different types of memory contents, typically known as objects, from each other so one can't be used to hijack or otherwise tamper with another. Heap partitioning has long been a mainstay in Chrome and other browsers. Now it's a key defense in Flash. Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
While we don't know precisely how life got its start on Earth, most scientists accept what's called the "RNA world" hypothesis, which posits that RNA molecules kickstarted the process by acting as both catalysts and genetic material. This does, however, leave an awkward question: how did proteins get involved? Proteins are long chains of chemicals called amino acids, and it's not clear how or why these molecules would have become associated with RNAs. Now, some research published in Angewandte Chemie is suggesting that chains of amino acids could have formed spontaneously, driven by nothing more than a cyclical dry period. Amino acids are just what their name implies: they have an acidic group on one side of the molecule and a nitrogen-containing amino group on the other. It's possible to link these two groups together in a reaction that releases a water molecule. Once linked, they're stable, but the reaction that links them isn't energetically favorable. So, people pondering the origin of life have wondered whether there was a pathway in which the bond could form spontaneously. Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Homejoy, an app-based home cleaning service startup that relies entirely on contract labor, suddenly announced it would be shutting down at the end of the month. The startup came under fire in March 2015 after it faced two lawsuits from former workers filed locally in San Francisco. In both lawsuits, the plaintiffs alleged that they should have been treated as employees, rather than independent contractors. In a Friday blog post, co-founder Adora Cheung alluded to, but did not directly address these issues. As she wrote: Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
In an effort to stem the loss of its overworked and overstressed drone pilots, the US Air Force has introduced a new program to try to convince existing pilots to stay with the service as well as rapidly bring aboard new ones. The plan includes pushing a fresh crop of "Remotely Piloted Aircraft" (RPA) pilots in drone squadrons as early as August and offering existing pilots a $15,000 bonus per year starting in 2016. As Ars reported in June, the Air Force is facing a potential mass exodus of drone pilots. The New York Times reported that a "significant number" of the current approximately 1,200 RPA-trained pilots who fly the Air Force's MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper drones were approaching the end of their current service obligations and had stated their intentions to leave the Air Force. Meanwhile, the training program for new drone pilots has only been producing about half the number needed to meet the Air Force's manning levels—putting more stress on pilots and causing the Air Force to move instructors back to daily flying to fill the gaps. The demands of flying combat missions a world away on long shifts without being actually deployed overseas (most Air Force drone pilots work from Creech Air Force Base outside Las Vegas, Nevada), and of having to switch gears to daily home life after such missions, has been a drain on the morale of drone pilots. As more pilots have left, more pressure has been placed on the remaining pilots. In a press release issued by the Air Force this week, Secretary of the Air force Deborah Lee James said, "We now face a situation where if we don't direct additional resources appropriately, it creates unacceptable risk [to drone operations]. We are working hard to put solutions in place to bring needed relief to our Airmen and ensure our actions show their value to our mission." Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Newly released e-mails from Hacking Team, the now-embattled Italian spyware firm that sold what it claims is lawful intercept software to companies and governments, definitively show that it sold its Remote Control System surveillance software to the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB), the successor agency to the KGB. Officially, Hacking Team sold its wares to a company called "Advanced Monitoring," whose corporate parent has a license to work with the FSB, as recently as August 28, 2014. That would put the Italian firm in violation of the July 31, 2014 European Union regulation that forbids selling such technology, whether directly or indirectly, to the Russian military. It also seems odd that Hacking Team would sell on one side of the Atlantic to Western agencies like the US Army while also selling to the FSB. In its most recent human rights report, the United States Department of State refers to Russia as a "highly centralized, increasingly authoritarian political system." Read 31 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
ars.AD.queue.push(["xrailTop", {sz:"300x250", kws:[], collapse: true}]);Smartphones and tablets have stopped changing all that much from year to year, which makes it easy to take for granted just how far they've come in such a relatively short time. One year of updates doesn't do much to impress anymore, but take three or four years of updates all at once and you'll have something to be impressed by. Such is the case with the sixth-generation iPod Touch, which brings three years' and four generations' worth of processor improvements all at the same time. Jumping from an Apple A5 to an A8 results in an almost comically large performance improvement, though as we'll see, you're not quite getting iPhone 6 performance in an iPod-sized body. The CPU The iPod's A8 is running at around 1.1GHz, roughly 27 percent slower than the 1.4GHz A8 in the iPhone 6. When those phones were announced, Apple said the A8 was about 25 percent faster than the Apple A7 in the iPhone 5S—as you can probably guess, slowing the thing down by 300MHz makes it perform a whole lot like an A7. Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Vandals snipped another fiber optic cable line in the San Francisco Bay area this week, the 12th incident of its kind in the region over the past year. The latest attack occurred in the San Joaquin Valley town of Stockton, disrupting Internet, mobile phone, and 911 service for tens of thousands of AT&T and Verizon customers in three counties east of San Francisco. Service was restored about a day after the Tuesday incident. The FBI, which is investigating the attacks, has not stated a motive, but it said the attacks usually occur in remote areas where there are no surveillance cameras. The initial attacks on California telecommunications lines began in July 2014. Whoever is responsible appears, for the moment, to be operating with impunity. Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Google announced in a blog post Thursday that a recent fender-bender with one of its self-driving car resulted in “a bit of minor whiplash, and a few scrapes on our bumper.” The July 1 incident marks the company’s 14th accident since 2009, and the first involving an injury of any kind. “I'll point out that the ‘injuries’ aren't as big a deal as some media outlets might have you believe,” Courtney Hohne, a Google spokeswoman, told Ars. “We took our drivers to visit a local hospital purely as a precautionary measure because they were experiencing minor whiplash; they were checked out briefly and sent home. (They were never admitted to the hospital.)” Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
A federal judge has ruled that video-streaming service FilmOn should be treated like a cable company and is entitled to the same compulsory copyright license that cable systems get. It's a huge and unexpected win, coming not long after Aereo failed when it tried to make the same argument in court. If upheld, the decision would open a route to legal TV-over-Internet businesses—not just for FilmOn but for future competitors. In his 15-page order, US District Judge George Wu acknowledged that his preliminary decision is in direct conflict with the 2nd Circuit, and he said he'll allow an immediate appeal to the 9th Circuit. The TV broadcasters who sued FilmOn for copyright infringement, which include all four major TV networks, will surely pursue that option. Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Greetings, Arsians! Courtesy of our partners at TechBargains, the Dealmaster is back! This week we've got a ton of Back to School deals on everything you need to get you through the semester—like a PlayStation 4! Today we have the PS4 Last of Us bundle for $399.99 with a $100 Dell gift card. If you want something that will help you with your school work instead of distracting you from it, how about $300 off a Dell Inspiron 3000 laptop? Featured Back to School Deals Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
This week, a US District judge reduced the $7.4 million award (PDF) that a jury granted to Marvin Gaye's family in March to $5.3 million. The Gaye family had accused pop stars Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams, as well as rapper T.I., of copyright infringement with their 2013 song “Blurred Lines,” which the Gaye family said sounded too much like Marvin Gaye's 1977 hit “Got to Give it Up.” The jury's March verdict awarded $4 million to the Gaye family in damages as well as a calculation of the profits that Williams and Thicke made from the song—the jury decided that this amounted to $1,610,455.31 from Williams and $1,768,191.88 from Thicke. This week, Judge Kronstadt ruled that Williams' share of the damages was unfair, however, because Williams' share of the producer royalties from “Blurred Lines” was only $860,333 (though Williams cleared upward of $4.2 million in publishing revenue from the song). “This award was excessive,” the judge wrote. “It reflects a profits-to-damages ratio of 187 percent, which is approximately 4.7 times greater than the 40 percent ratio that was used in the calculation of damages as to Thicke’s profits.” Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Self-driving cars are coming. Tech companies like Google and Nvidia, tier-one auto parts suppliers like Delphi, and OEMs like Audi, Tesla, and Volvo are all hard at work turning our automobiles into robots. The possibilities for reducing congestion and air pollution while increasing safety on the roads are tantalizing, but do people actually want their cars to drive themselves? That's the question that Brandon Schoettle and Michael Sivak at the University of Michigan wanted answered. As it turns out, a plurality of drivers is happy being in control of their vehicles, and only 15 percent want to be chauffeured around like Arnold in Total Recall. The self-driving car isn't an all-or-nothing proposition. There are already cars on the road that are capable of semi-autonomous driving on the freeway (adaptive cruise control systems combined with lane-centering), and it will be many years before a car is able to handle a busy downtown interchange in Mumbai or Manhattan. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) actually lays out five levels of autonomous automobile. It starts with level zero, where the driver is in complete control, with no aids. Cars with automated safety functions like dynamic brake assist or lane-centering steering are deemed level one if those systems work independently of each other. Combining at least two safety systems gives us level two (so adaptive cruise control and lane-centering, for example). Level three automation combines all these safety features, allowing a driver to cede complete control to the car, with what NHTSA describes as "a sufficiently comfortable transition time" allowed before returning to manual control. Finally, level four is fully autonomous, i.e. the car drives itself throughout the entire journey, with the occupants as just passengers. Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
iFixit has just completed the sixth-generation iPod Touch's new gadget introduction cycle by tearing it apart to see what's inside. By and large, the new iPod is pretty similar to the old one. Apple has changed essentially nothing about the outside of the device, so the way the components all fit together is mostly the same. The one notable change is related to the way the battery is secured in the case: "peel-out adhesive tabs" replace the more persistent adhesive from the fifth-generation model. You still need to heat up the adhesive securing the screen to the back of the case to get inside the Touch in the first place, but this change was enough to bump the new iPod's "repairability score" from a three to a four on iFixit's 10-point scale. The capacity of the battery changes very little, from 1030 mAh to 1043 mAh. The camera, while a big improvement over the fifth-generation Touch, doesn't look quite as good as the ones in current iPhones. Its lens has an f/2.4 aperture rather than the f/2.2 aperture of the iPhone 5S or 6-series (that's the same as the iPhone 5 and 5C). iFixit also notes that the lens isn't made out of the sapphire crystal used in the iPhones, which means it won't be quite as scratch resistant. Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
Video of the GZDoom mod that plays Doom in an in-game cabinet. Since the original Doom was released as open source code in the late '90s, hackers and modders have taken great joy in porting it to everything from Android Wear watches to printers. Now, those efforts have reached what may well be their zenith, with the release of a new mod that allows you to run a copy of Doom inside Doom itself. OK, if we're being technically accurate, this is actually Doom running inside GZDoom, a heavily modified Doom source port that was first released in 2005 to bring a slew of modern gaming features to the 1993 original. The author also warns that the in-game versions of Doom and Wolfenstein 3D available in the mod are only "semi-complete." Still, the sheer amount of near-pointless effort and dedication needed to get GZDoom to run what is essentially a version of itself within itself is impressive (and kind of frightening). Porting Doom to GZDoom was made possible through some elegant work on Action Code Script (ACS), a tool first introduced to the Doom engine in 1995's Hexen. ACS was designed to allow modders to create more interactive environments through simple bytecodes that did things like open doors, play sounds, or move items and characters around in response to player actions. The basic bytecode-based language in that game was later extended in the ZDoom source port to allow for high-level programming features like named scripts, functions, arrays, and entire libraries. Those additions made their way into the later GZDoom as well. Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 12 days ago on ars technica
The Federal Communications Commission reportedly plans to reject $3.3 billion worth of discounts Dish Network was set to receive after placing spectrum auction bids through subsidiaries to qualify for "small business" price cuts. Dish's strategy allowed it to make winning bids on $13.3 billion worth of wireless spectrum while only committing to spend $10 billion. FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai quickly cried foul after the auction, which ended in January, saying that "two companies in which Dish Network has an 85 percent ownership stake claimed over $3 billion in taxpayer-funded discounts. Those discounts came through the FCC’s designed entity (DE) program, which is intended to make it easier for small businesses to purchase spectrum and compete with large corporations. Dish, however, has annual revenues of almost $14 billion, a market capitalization of over $32 billion, and over 14 million customers." It turns out that Pai and FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who are often on opposite sides of contentious issues, agree that Dish shouldn't be able to get these discounts. The Wall Street Journal reported last night that FCC staff has "concluded that the $13.3 billion in winning bids by two companies backed by Dish didn’t qualify for the small-business discounts because their bidding conduct violated the broad spirit of the auction’s rules" and that Wheeler has circulated a draft order to his fellow commissioners to rule on the matter. Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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