posted less than an hour ago on slashdot
An anonymous reader shares a report: We've seen several smartphone brands cheat benchmarks over the years, ostensibly in a bid to earn some ill-deserved praise among enthusiasts. But a new report suggests chipset manufacturer MediaTek could be gaming these scores. AnandTech uncovered evidence of benchmark cheating by MediaTek when it received a Helio P95-powered Oppo Reno 3 Pro (European version) and a standard Dimensity 1000L-powered Oppo Reno 3 (Chinese model). The outlet's suspicions were raised when the Reno 3 Pro beat the Reno 3 in the PCMark benchmark utility. This was strange, because the Helio P95's Cortex-A75 CPU cores are two generations older than the Dimensity 1000L's Cortex-A77 CPU cores. Furthermore, the P95 only had two of these cores versus the newer chip's four heavyweight cores. A stealth version of the PCMark benchmark utility -- which manufacturers can't identify -- was installed on the Reno 3 Pro. This revealed a 30% drop in benchmark score compared to the previous questionable score, with Anandtech saying some tests in the benchmark dropped by 75%. The outlet also tested the Chinese version of the Reno 3 Pro, which swaps the Helio P95 for a Snapdragon 765G, and noted the phone ran the benchmark without resorting to cheating. AnandTech then dug into the offending device's firmware files and found references tying benchmark apps to a so-called "sports mode." It's believed that this mode ramps up things like the memory controller and scheduler in order to facilitate faster performance.

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posted about 1 hour ago on slashdot
Tail OS, an operating system optimized for privacy and anonymity, has released version 4.5 this week, the first version that supports a crucial security feature named UEFI Secure Boot. From a report: Secure Boot works by using cryptographic signatures to verify that firmware files loaded during a computer's boot-up process are authentic and have not been tampered. If any of the firmware checks fail, Secure Boot has the authority to stop the boot process, preventing the operating system from launching. The feature has been available as part of the UEFI specification for almost two decades but is rarely used. The reason is because not all firmware vendors cryptographically sign their files, leaving the door open to verification errors that -- when Secure Boot is enabled -- block many operation systems from launching.

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posted about 2 hours ago on slashdot
On Wednesday, Mozilla chair and longtime leader Mitchell Baker was named permanent CEO of the company that makes the Firefox web browser. From a report: Mitchell became interim CEO of Mozilla in December 2019, after former CEO Chris Beard resigned. The company conducted an external candidate search over the last eight months, and concluded the Mitchell is the right leader for Mozilla at this time, according to a company blog post published Wednesday. "Increasingly, numbers of people recognize that the internet needs attention," Baker said in another Mozilla blog post Wednesday. "Mozilla has a special, if not unique role to play here. It's time to tune our existing assets to meet the challenge. It's time to make use of Mozilla's ingenuity and unbelievable technical depth and understanding of the "web" platform to make new products and experiences. It's time to gather with others who want these things and work together to make them real."

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posted about 3 hours ago on slashdot
Sen. Bernie Sanders ended his presidential campaign on Wednesday, clearing Joe Biden's path to the Democratic nomination and a showdown with President Donald Trump in November. From a report: Sanders first made the announcement in a call with his staff, his campaign said. "I wish I could give you better news, but I think you know the truth, and that is that we are now some 300 delegates behind Vice President Biden, and the path toward victory is virtually impossible," Sanders said in a livestream after the call. "So while we are winning the ideological battle and while we are winning the support of so many young people and working people throughout the country, I have concluded that this battle for the Democratic nomination will not be successful. And so today I am announcing the suspension of my campaign." Sanders' exit caps a stunning reversal of fortune following a strong performance in the first three states that voted in February. The nomination appeared his for the taking until, on the last day of February, Biden surged to a blowout victory in South Carolina that set off a consolidation of moderate voters around the former vice president. The contest ends now as the country continues to grapple with the coronavirus pandemic, which halted in-person campaigning for both Sanders and Biden and has led many states to delay their primary elections."

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posted about 3 hours ago on slashdot
An anonymous reader writes: Google today launched Chrome 81 for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS. Chrome 81 includes an Origin Trial of Web NFC for mobile, early Augmented Reality support, mixed images autoupgraded to HTTPS, TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1 deprecated, and more developer features. With over 1 billion users, Chrome is both a browser and a major platform that web developers must consider. In fact, with Chrome's regular additions and changes, developers have to stay on top of everything available -- as well as what has been deprecated or removed. Among other things, Chrome 81 removes the "discard" element and FTP support.

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posted about 4 hours ago on slashdot
Google's video game streaming platform, Stadia, is now free to anyone with a Gmail address, the company announced on Wednesday. To sweeten the deal, Google is also giving new users two months of Stadia Pro -- including access to nine games -- for free. From a report: Existing Stadia Pro subscribers won't be charged for the next two months of the service, Google said. Previously, access to Stadia required purchasing the $129 Google Stadia Premiere Edition, a bundle that includes a Chromecast Ultra, a wireless Stadia Controller, and three months of Stadia Pro, the service that offered free games and video streams up to 4K resolution and 60 frames per second with HDR lighting.

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posted about 5 hours ago on slashdot
The major tech companies are scrambling to craft digital options for this year's summer intern class, as businesses remain shuttered due to the coronavirus pandemic. These companies said they're moving their programs online: Google said it will pay its interns the full rate. Twitter said its intern class may shrink this year. Microsoft said it will have its biggest ever intern class -- more than 4,000. Lyft, which will have the same number of interns as originally planned, limit them to just two start dates to provide students with more of a common experience. Salesforce, which also plans a similar size intern class as intended. These companies are still hoping have at least some interns on-site for at least part of the summer: Apple said it plans to hire more than 1,000 people for a mix of online and in-person internships and pledged in a statement to "extend to our interns the same precautions and care that we're extending to all our other personnel as a part of the ongoing COVID-19 response." Amazon said it expects its biggest-ever class of interns globally, though it said the vast majority of internships will be virtual. Intel, which does plan to have its interns work remotely but hopes to move them on-site should the situation and health authority guidelines make that possible. Uber, which has made plans for online on-boarding and will keep the program online if their offices remain closed, but will aim to have its interns work in the office if that is possible. Doordash said, for now, it "plans to stay the course" with its summer internship program, but is exploring options for conducting the program remotely and will "continue to re-evaluate as the situation progresses."

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posted about 5 hours ago on slashdot
Deep learning algorithms can diagnose, triage, and monitor coronavirus cases from lung images. Next, can they predict who will need a ventilator? From a report: AI-powered analysis of chest scans has the potential to alleviate the growing burden on radiologists, who must review and prioritize a rising number of patient chest scans each day, experts say. And in the future, the technology might help predict which patients are most likely to need a ventilator or medication, and which can be sent home. "That's the brass ring," says Matthew Lungren, a pediatric radiologist at Stanford University Medical Center and co-director of the Stanford Center for Artificial Intelligence in Medicine and Imaging. "That would be the killer app for this." Some companies are selling their tools, others have released free online versions, and various groups are organizing large crowdsourced repositories of medical images to generate new algorithms. "The system we designed can process huge amounts of CT scans per day," says Hayit Greenspan, a professor at Tel-Aviv University and chief scientist of RADLogics, a healthcare software company that recently announced one such AI-based system. "The capability for quickly covering a huge population is there."

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posted about 6 hours ago on slashdot
Microsoft is planning to make all of its internal and external events digital-only until July 2021 due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. From a report: The software maker had already revealed Build 2020, due to be held in Seattle in May, would transform into a digital event. This digital-only focus is now extending to far more events over the next year. "In light of the challenges presented by COVID-19, Microsoft has been closely monitoring the developing global situation and re-assessing the overall company-wide in-person event strategy," explains a recent email to Microsoft MVPs. "As a company, Microsoft has made the decision to transition all external and internal events to a digital-first experience through July 2021."

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posted about 7 hours ago on slashdot
In ordinary times, they moved among us largely unnoticed. Now we can't get enough of them. The Covid-19 pandemic has thrust once-anonymous IT support workers into a new role: corporate saviors. From a report: As millions of employees make the transition from well-maintained office equipment to jury-rigged kitchen table setups, information technology departments have been called upon to keep companies online and connected. Requests range in size and scale, from replacing employees' $5 mouses, to speeding up networks, to keeping multimillion-dollar data centers up and running. For many departments, the result has been virtually unprecedented workloads. On March 12, Qualcomm told all staff to prepare to start working remotely in three days. Vice president of IT infrastructure, Zeeshan Sabir, and his team then worked about 72 hours straight trying to prepare a lot of laptops for secure, remote access and get other corporate systems ready. "I just saw heroics," he said. "I didn't see a blip of complaint from anyone." [...] The way most IT departments are set up has meant many directors have been juggling major issues alongside relatively minor ones. At Bay Area transit agency SamTrans, IT manager Edward Kelly got help from AT&T to quickly increase the speed of connections to the agency's networks once its 200 employees made the switch to remote work. At the same time, Kelly's team of five was flooded by calls from employees who'd forgotten their computer password and guessed wrong too many times. He said he's also hoping people learn to use the "reply-all" button on group emails more sparingly. As many employees' home computers infuriate them, tensions can run high, said Jennifer Reed, a consultant at IT outsourcing firm Viqtor Davis North America.

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posted about 7 hours ago on slashdot
A New York Times analysis of internet usage in the United States from SimilarWeb and Apptopia, two online data providers, reveals that our behaviors shifted, sometimes starkly, as the virus spread and pushed us to our devices for work, play and connecting. From the report: With nearly all public gatherings called off, Americans are seeking out entertainment on streaming services like Netflix and YouTube, and looking to connect with one another on social media outlets like Facebook. In the past few years, users of these services were increasingly moving to their smartphones, creating an industrywide focus on mobile. Now that we are spending our days at home, with computers close at hand, Americans appear to be remembering how unpleasant it can be to squint at those little phone screens. Facebook, Netflix and YouTube have all seen user numbers on their phone apps stagnate or fall off as their websites have grown, the data from SimilarWeb and Apptopia indicates. While traditional social media sites have been growing, it seems that we want to do more than just connect through messaging and text -- we want to see one another. This has given a big boost to apps that used to linger in relative obscurity, like Google's video chatting application, Duo, and Houseparty, which allows groups of friends to join a single video chat and play games together.

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posted about 8 hours ago on slashdot
An anonymous reader quotes a report from ZDNet: The new normal telecommuting may be a bit more permanent than realized, as 74% of CFOs say they expect to move previously on-site employees remote post-COVID-19, according to a Gartner survey. The survey, which had 317 CFO respondents on March 30, highlighted how remote work may become more of the norm as companies look to cut commercial real estate costs. Gartner found that almost a quarter of respondents said they will move at least 20% of their on-site employees to remote work permanently. The research firm is taking the pulse of the COVID-19 CXO shifts in a series of surveys. Among the key shifts from CFOs and enterprises as they manage cash via COVID-19 shutdowns: - 81% of CFOs plan to exceed their contractual obligations to hourly workers and to fund that they are using remote work to offer flexible schedules and maintain operations. - 90% of CFOs said their accounting close operations will be able to run effectively without disruptions off-site. - 20% of CFOs said they are cutting their on-premise technology spending with 12% planning the same move. - 13% of CFOs have already cut real estate expenses with another 9% planning cuts in the months to come.

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posted about 11 hours ago on slashdot
According to a study published Monday by the CDC, people in the United States under the age of 18 are far less likely to fall ill with COVID-19 or require intensive care, compared with older Americans. NPR reports: The study looked at about 149,000 infections for which age was known that were reported in the U.S. through April 2. Of those, 2,572 were among people under the age of 18. That's less than 2% of total cases, even though that age group makes up 22% of the U.S. population. The CDC cautions that most reports of coronavirus cases among children are incomplete, which adds uncertainty to the report's specific numbers. Relatively few children with COVID-19 ended up in the hospital, and fewer still required intensive care. But hospitalization status was known in only 29% of cases involving children. Based on the partial data analyzed in this study, between 5.7% and 20% of sick children end up in the hospital, and 2% or fewer end up in intensive care, the paper says. For adults ages 18-64, the proportion hospitalized was between 10% and 33%, and 1.4% to 4.5% required intensive care. Hospital admission was most common with children under the age of 1 or young people with underlying health conditions, the CDC report says. The study observed three deaths among the population it covered. The authors conclude: "Because persons with asymptomatic and mild disease, including children, are likely playing a role in transmission and spread of COVID-19 in the community, social distancing and everyday preventive behaviors are recommended for persons of all ages to slow the spread of the virus, protect the health care system from being overloaded, and protect older adults and persons of any age with serious underlying medical conditions."

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posted about 14 hours ago on slashdot
Last August, Slashdot reader bobstreo tipped us off to an interesting story where an astronaut accessed the bank account of her estranged spouse from the International Space Station, in what may have been the first allegation of a crime committed in space. We have now learned that the spouse has been indicted on charges of lying to federal authorities. USA Today reports: Summer Worden, 44, made false statements to NASA's Office of the Inspector General and the Federal Trade Commission, according a statement from U.S. Attorney Ryan Patrick. A federal jury in Houston returned the two-count indictment in late February, but it was unsealed Monday. Worden married Anne McClain, a decorated astronaut who was once set to be part of NASA's first all-female spacewalk, in 2014 and filed for divorce in 2018. In 2019, Worden filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission claiming McClain had stolen her identity while on a six-month mission aboard the International Space Station, although she saw no signs anyone had moved or used funds in the account, The New York Times reported. Worden's parents brought a separate complaint to NASA's Office of the Inspector General that described a "highly calculated and manipulative campaign" designed to win custody of the couple's child. Through her lawyer, Rusty Hardin, McClain told The Times she had accessed the account but said she did so to ensure that the family's finances were in order and that there was enough money in the account to care for their child, who was born a year before they met. She said she was never told to stop using the account and continued to use the same password she had throughout the relationship. The indictment says Worden maintained multiple accounts at USAA Federal Savings Bank and she shared access to those accounts "with a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army on detail to NASA's Johnson Space Center." She lied about when she opened the account that had allegedly been improperly accessed and when she reset her login credentials in a complaint filed with the FTC in March 19, 2019, according to the indictment. Worden also allegedly made another false statement in an interview with NASA's Office of the Inspector General in July. If Worden is convicted, she could face up to five years in prison on each count and a maximum fine of $250,000. She is expected to make an initial court appearance April 13.

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posted about 18 hours ago on slashdot
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: A padlock -- whether it uses a combination, a key, or "smart" tech -- has exactly one job: to keep your stuff safe so other people can't get it. Tapplock, Inc., based in Canada, produces such a product. The company's locks unlock with a fingerprint or an app connected by Bluetooth to your phone. Unfortunately, the Federal Trade Commission said, the locks are full of both digital and physical vulnerabilities that leave users' stuff, and data, at risk. The FTC's complaint (PDF) against Tapplock, released Monday, basically alleges that the company misrepresented itself, because it marketed its products as secure and tested when they were neither. A product -- any product -- simply being kind of crappy doesn't necessarily fall under the FTC's purview. Saying untrue things about your product in your advertisement or privacy policy, however, will make the commission very unhappy with you indeed. The lock may be built with "7mm reinforced stainless steel shackles, strengthened by double-layered lock design with anti-shim and anti-pry technologies," as Tapplock's website promises, but according to the FTC, perhaps it should have considered anti-screwdriver technologies. As it turns out, a researcher was able to unlock the lock "within a matter of seconds" by unscrewing the back panel. Oops. The complaint also pointed to several "reasonably foreseeable" software vulnerabilities that the FTC alleges Tapplock could have avoided if the company "had implemented simple, low-cost steps." One vulnerability security researchers identified allowed a user to bypass the account authentication process entirely in order to gain full access to the account of literally any Tapplock user, including their personal information. And how could this happen? "A researcher who logged in with a valid user credential could then access another user's account without being re-directed back to the login page, thereby allowing the researcher to circumvent Respondent's authentication procedures altogether," the complaint explains. A second vulnerability allowed researchers the ability to access and unlock any lock they could get close enough to with a working Bluetooth connection. That's because Tapplock "failed to encrypt the Bluetooth communication between the lock and the app," leaving the data wide open for the researchers to discover and replicate. The third vulnerability outlined in the complaint also has to do with a failure to secure communication data. That app that allows "unlimited" connections? The primary owner can of course add and revoke authorized users from the lock. But someone whose access was revoked could still access the lock because the vulnerability allowed for sniffing out the relevant data packets. As part of the settlement, the FTC is requiring Tapplock to create a security program for its products. "That program is required to include training for employees; timely disclosure of 'covered incidents,' including both loss of personal information and also unauthorized access to systems; actual penetration testing of the network; and several other elements, including annual review," reports Ars Technica.

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posted about 19 hours ago on slashdot
According to The Verge, Verizon is canceling scheduled appointments for internet installation and repairs, "[leaving] Fios subscribers without wired internet at a time when they're likely relying on it for work and to see friends and family during the COVID-19 pandemic." From the report: "We are minimizing our in-home installation work to critical needs to keep our employees and customers safe and to reduce the spread of COVID-19," Verizon says in a support document. "To reduce the spread of COVID-19 and keep our employees and customers safe, we are making every attempt to perform work without going into homes or small businesses and are limiting in-home installs to medical emergencies and critical installations," Verizon tells The Verge in a statement. Self-install options are also available for "qualified service orders," the company added. However, Verizon actually changed the language in the support document sometime on Tuesday morning, according to Business Insider. Previously, the site said that "our technicians will not be able to enter your home or business to install new services or to do repair work." Here is the previous language, from a version of the page archived on Monday: "As a result of COVID-19, we are taking precautions to keep our employees and customers safe. At this time, our technicians will not be able to enter your home or business to install new services or to do repair work. Qualified orders will be provided self-install options, or you may proceed with placing an order for a technician-required installation and it will be held for future appointment priority. You will receive notification to select an installation date when we resume operations."

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posted about 20 hours ago on slashdot
Netflix is strengthening parental controls, offering more tools to limit what kids can watch on the world's most popular paid streaming service. From a report: Parents can now filter out titles they deem inappropriate and protect individual profiles with a PIN so kids can't use them, the company said Tuesday. These changes take effect for customers in all 190 countries where the streaming service is available.

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posted about 21 hours ago on slashdot
Taiwan's cabinet has told government agencies to stop using the Zoom conferencing app due to privacy and security woes. Reuters reports: Zoom's daily users ballooned to more than 200 million in March, as coronavirus-induced shutdowns forced employees to work from home and schools switched to the company's free app for conducting and coordinating online classes. However, the company is facing a backlash from users worried about the lack of end-to-end encryption of meeting sessions and "zoombombing," where uninvited guests crash into meetings. If government agencies must hold video conferencing, they "should not use products with security concerns, like Zoom," Taiwan's cabinet said in a statement on Tuesday. It did not elaborate on what the security concerns were. The island's education ministry later said it was banning the use of Zoom in schools. Taiwan would be the first government formally advising against use of Zoom, although some U.S. schools districts are looking at putting limits on its use after an FBI warning last month. Taiwan's cabinet said domestically-made conferencing apps were preferred, but if needed products from Google and Microsoft could also be considered.

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posted about 21 hours ago on slashdot
An anonymous reader shares an excerpt from a report via BuzzFeed News: A group inside Apple called Information Systems & Technology, or IS&T, builds much of the company's internal technology tools -- from servers and data infrastructure to retail and corporate sales software -- and operates in a state of tumult. IS&T is made up largely of contractors hired by rival consulting companies, and its dysfunction has led to a rolling state of war. "It's a huge contractor org that handles a crazy amount of infrastructure for the company," one ex-employee who worked closely with IS&T told me. "That whole organization is a Game of Thrones nightmare." Interviews with multiple former IS&T employees and its internal clients paint a picture of a division in turmoil, where infighting regularly prevents the creation of useful software, and whose contract workers are treated as disposable parts. "There's a Cold War going on every single day," Archana Sabapathy, a former IS&T contractor who did two stints in the division, told me. Sabapathy's first stint at IS&T lasted more than three years, the second only a day. Inside the division, she said, contracting companies such as Wipro, Infosys, and Accenture are constantly fighting to fill roles and win projects, which are handed out largely on the basis of how cheaply they can staff up to Apple's needs. "They're just fighting for the roles," Sabapathy told me. "That's all they care about, not the work, not the deliverables, the effort they put in, or even talent. They're not looking for any of those aspects." IS&T is thus filled with vendor tribalism, where loyalty to one's contracting company trumps all. "Making a friendship is -- like you wouldn't even think about that," Sabapathy told me, speaking of cross-vendor relationships. "It's not the traditional American way of working anymore. You build relationships when you come to work because you spend most of your time here -- that's not there." "Sabapathy told [BuzzFeed's Alex Kantrowitz] Apple employees' expectations for their IS&T contractors were unrealistic given that they saw the sum total they were paying the consulting companies ($150 to $120 an hour, she said) but the contractors themselves were making much less ($40 to $55 an hour) after the companies took their cut," writes Kantrowitz. "The approach leaves Apple with lesser contractors but the same high demands, a recipe for disappointment." In closing, Kantrowitz suggests if Apple wants to become inventive again, "it will need to give its employees more time to develop new ideas." He adds: "IS&T could therefore become a division of strength at Apple one day, building tools that minimize work that supports existing products while making room for those ideas. But until Apple gives the division a hard look, its employees will be stuck spending their time reworking broken internal software, and wishing they were inventing instead."

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posted about 22 hours ago on slashdot
What better way to celebrate World Health Day than by threatening to withhold funding for the World Health Organization. That's exactly what President Trump said he was considering today at Tuesday's coronavirus press briefing. The New York Times reports: "We're going to put a hold on money spent to the W.H.O.; we're going to put a very powerful hold on it and we're going to see," Mr. Trump said, accusing the organization of having not been aggressive enough in confronting the dangers from the virus. "They called it wrong. They call it wrong. They really they missed the call." Mr. Trump appeared to be particularly angry at the W.H.O. for issuing a statement saying it did not support his decision on Jan. 31 to restrict some travel from China because of the virus. At the time, the group issued a statement saying that "restricting the movement of people and goods during public health emergencies is ineffective in most situations and may divert resources from other interventions." "Don't close your borders to China, don't do this," Mr. Trump said, paraphrasing the group and accusing the organization of "not seeing" the outbreak when it started in Wuhan, China. "They didn't see it, how do you not see it? They didn't see it. They didn't report it. If they did see it, they must have seen it, but they didn't report." In fact, the W.H.O. repeatedly issued statements about the emergence of the virus in China and its movement around the world. The budget for the W.H.O. is about $5 billion and comes from member countries around the world. "In 2017, the last year for which figures were available, the United States was required to spend $111 million based on the organization's rules, but sent an additional $401 million in voluntary contributions," reports The New York Times. Trump said his government will investigate the organization and that "we will look at ending funding." It's unclear if he's planning to eliminate all funding, or only some.

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posted about 23 hours ago on slashdot
Just days after SoftBank announced that it would not consummate its $3 billion tender offer for WeWork shares that would have bought out some of the equity held by the company's co-founder Adam Neumann along with venture capital firms like Benchmark and many individual company employees, the company is now retaliating, suing SoftBank over alleged breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty. TechCrunch reports: In a press statement this morning, the Special Committee of WeWork's board said that it "regrets the fact that SoftBank continues to put its own interests ahead of those of WeWork's minority stockholders." WeWork's Special Committee argues that SoftBank already received the benefits of the contract it signed last year, which included board control provisions. It's demanding that SoftBank either complete the transaction, or offer cash to cover damages related to its scuttling of the deal. Under the terms of the tender offer proposed in November last year, SoftBank would buy upwards of $3 billion in shares from existing shareholders with the transaction closing at the beginning of April. As part of the terms of that contract, the co-working company and SoftBank agreed to a set of performance milestones that WeWork agreed to meet in exchange for the secondary liquidity. Such terms are customary in most financial transactions. SoftBank in its statement last week said that WeWork failed to meet a number of those performance requirements, and said that it was within its rights under the tender offer contract to walk away from the deal. WeWork's financials have been rocked by the global pandemic of novel coronavirus, which has seen the company's co-working facilities mostly closed worldwide as part of public health mandates for social distancing. Given the disagreement between the parties, a lawsuit was all but inevitable.

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posted about 23 hours ago on slashdot
An anonymous reader quotes a report from CNBC: Square and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said Tuesday he will set aside $1 billion in his Square equity to support relief efforts for COVID-19 and other causes once the pandemic is over. In a series of tweets, Dorsey said that after the pandemic is over, he will dedicate the money to causes like universal basic income (UBI) and girls' health and education. He said he's pulling the shares from his stake in Square instead of Twitter because he own more stock in the Square. Dorsey said he'll cash in the shares over time. "The impact this money will have should benefit both companies over the long-term because it's helping the people we want to serve," Dorsey said on Twitter. Dorsey said that he wants to see the impact of his donation during his lifetime, and that "the needs are increasingly urgent." He also said he hopes it will inspire others to "do something similar." Dorsey also tweeted a link to a public Google Doc where people can track which organizations the fund's money will go to. Dorsey isn't the only technologist to support relief efforts for COVID-19. Yesterday, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates said his foundation will spend billions of dollars on coronavirus vaccine development. Amazon's Jeff Bezos said he's donating $100 million to U.S. food banks. And Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan donated $25 million toward creating treatments for coronavirus through their philanthropic organization.

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posted about 24 hours ago on slashdot
Sony has revealed the DualSense, PlayStation 5's new controller that will "bring a sense of touch to PS5 gameplay." IGN reports: Announced on PlayStation.Blog, the DualSense will keep "much of what gamers love about DualShock 4 intact, while also adding new functionality and refining the design." Touch was a big inspiration when designing the DualSense, and haptic feedback is one of the ways this new controller will help bring PS5 games to life. Sony mentions that this feedback will add " a variety of powerful sensations you'll feel when you play, such as the slow grittiness of driving a car through mud." Adaptive triggers have also been incorporated to the L2 and R2 buttons, which will help players "feel the tension of your actions, like when drawing a bow to shoot an arrow." The angle of the hand triggers were changed and some subtle updates were made to the grip. One thing that will be missing from the DualSense is the "Share" button that was featured on the DualShock 4. Sharing from the controller is not gone, but that previous button was replaced by the new "Create" button. Sony promises more details will be revealed on this change as we get closer to PlayStation 5's launch. DualSense will also have a built-in microphone array that will allow players to easily chat with friends, even for those who don't own a headset. As for the controller's color, it is a bit of a non-traditional design as far as PlayStation is concerned. Usually, PlayStation controllers have a single color, but the DualSense has a two-toned design to make it stand apart. Additionally, the position of the light bar, which will be returning, was moved to "give it an extra pop." Now, the light bar sits on either side of the touch pad, as opposed to the top of the controller. Here's a picture of the front of the controller:

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posted 1 day ago on slashdot
Google is now backing a standard proposed by Apple engineers in January to create a default format for one-time passcodes (OTP) sent via SMS to users during the two-factor authentication (2FA) process. From a report: The standard, proposed by Apple engineers working on the Safari WebKit project, has now reached the status of official Web Platform Incubator Community Group (WICG) specification draft. "We've moved 'Origin-bound one-time codes delivered via SMS' to @wicg_, where we're working on a shared spec with our collaborators at Google. Please take a look! Updated explainer, and specification," wrote Apple's Ricky Mondello. The proposal aims to fix some issues with the current state of SMS 2FA/OTP codes, all of which have different formats, unique per the websites sending the codes.

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posted 1 day ago on slashdot
Samsung is killing its Smart View app for Android and iOS, which serves as a remote control for its older smart TVs. From a report: The company has updated the application's descriptions to announce that it will no longer be supported starting on October 5th. Android Police first spotted the changes and noted that, in addition to its capability as a remote control, Smart View can also beam music and media to the company's TVs. It's unclear how Samsung defines "older" -- hence which all models will be impacted.

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