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United Kingdom

Are Roads Safer With No Central White Lines? 141

Press2ToContinue writes: White lines along the center of roads have been removed in parts of the UK, with some experts saying it encourages motorists to slow down. So is it the beginning of the end for the central road marking? You are driving along the road when the dotted white line that has been your companion — separating your car from oncoming traffic — suddenly disappears. One theory is that you will slow down, making the road safer. What could possibly go wrong?
Google

Google Working On Wireless Charging For Self-Driving Cars (inhabitat.com) 37

MikeChino writes: New FCC filings suggest that Google is currently installing wireless charging systems for self-driving cars at its headquarters in Mountain View. The documents suggest that the systems will be installed by Hevo Power and Momentum Dynamics. Both companies offer technology that can wirelessly charge an electric car via plates that are embedded in the ground.

Submission + - Ubuntu Touch Is Being Ported to Fairphone 2

prisoninmate writes: While Canonical employees are working hard these days on the enablement of the Ubuntu Tablet device, it looks like we're getting the Ubuntu Touch mobile operating system on the Fairphone 2 smartphone. Marius Gripsgård, the skilled developer who managed to port Ubuntu for Phones on the OnePlus One smartphone is currently working on porting Ubuntu Touch to Fairphone 2. Softpedia got in touch with the developer to find a few more details about what's going on, what works right now on the device, and what users should expect in the coming months.

Submission + - Are roads safer with no central white lines?

Press2ToContinue writes: White lines along the center of roads have been removed in parts of the UK, with some experts saying it encourages motorists to slow down. So is it the beginning of the end for the central road marking?

You are driving along the road when the dotted white line that has been your companion — separating your car from oncoming traffic — suddenly disappears.

One theory is that you will slow down, making the road safer.

What could possibly go wrong?

Submission + - Skylake Breaks 7GHz In Intel Overclocking World Record (hothardware.com)

MojoKid writes: Intel's latest generation of processors built on the Skylake architecture are efficient as well as seriously fast. The flagship, Core i7-6700K, is an interesting chip as it's clocked at a base 4GHz, and can peak at 4.2GHz with Turbo Boost. Of course, as fast as the 6700K is, overclocking can always help take things to the next level, or at least temporarily explore future potential. In Chi-Kui Lam's case, he did just that, and managed to break a world record for Intel processors along the way. Equipped with an ASRock motherboard, G.SKILL memory, and a beefy 1.3KW Antec power supply — not to mention liquid nitrogen — Lam managed to break through the 7GHz barrier to settle in at 7025.66MHz. A CPU-Z screenshot shows us that all cores but one were disabled — something traditionally done to improve the chances of reaching such high clock speeds.

Submission + - Company tracked Iowa caucusgoers' phones 1

schwit1 writes: Who needs exit polls when you can track caucusgoers' phones?

That's what one company did. Dstillery, which has been called "Picasso in the dark art of digital advertising," turned its intelligence-collection capabilities to the Iowa caucuses last week.

The company used location data to identify more than 16,000 devices at caucus locations across the state.

"We can take a population in a discrete location — in this case a polling, a caucus site — and sample that population and go and then look at characteristics of that population that no one's been able to discern before, because we have this incredibly rich behavioral view of American consumers based on all the digital behaviors we observe," Dstillery CEO Tom Phillips said in an interview.
AI

Wolves Howl In Different 'Dialects,' Machine Learning Finds (vice.com) 41

derekmead writes: Differentiating wolf howls with human ears can prove tricky, so researchers have turned to computer algorithms to suss out if different wolf species howl differently. They think that understanding wolf howls could help improve wolf conservation and management programs. In a study published in the journal Behavioural Processes, a group of international researchers describe using machine learning for the first time to analyze 2,000 wolf howls gathered from both wild and domesticated wolves and their subspecies from around the world.
Oracle

Java Installer Flaw Shows Why You Should Clear Your Downloads Folder (csoonline.com) 48

itwbennett writes: On Friday, Oracle published a security advisory recommending that users delete all the Java installers they might have laying around on their computers and use new ones for versions 6u113, 7u97, 8u73 or later. The reason: Older versions of the Java installer were vulnerable to binary planting in the Downloads folder. 'Though considered relatively complex to exploit, this vulnerability may result, if successfully exploited, in a complete compromise of the unsuspecting user's system,' said Eric Maurice, Oracle's software security assurance director, in a blog post.

Submission + - Audioquest Caught Rigging HDMI Demo to "Prove" Audible Differences (audioholics.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: Audiophile drama is unfolding as an Audioquest HDMI cable demo, featuring an Audioquest employee showing unrealistic changes in sound, was seemingly debunked as fraudulent by Mark Waldrep, aka Dr. AIX, in a recent blog post. A subsequent "Open Letter" from Audioquest owner William Low admitted he heard the video a year ago, found the audio difference "unbelievable", but did not ask to have the video removed until after Mark Waldrep published his findings a year later. Is this an isolated incident, or just the latest in a string of misleading behavior perpetuated in the high-end cable industry?
Businesses

How the Cloud Has Changed (Since Last You Looked) 63

snydeq writes: InfoWorld's Peter Wayner takes a look at the new services and pricing models that are making cloud computing more powerful, complex, and cheaper than it was a few short years ago. 'We get more, but using it isn't always as simple as it could be. Sure, you still end up on root on some box that's probably running Linux, but getting the right performance out of that machine is more complex,' Wayner writes. "But the real fun comes when you try to figure out how to pay for your planned cloud deployment because there are more options than ever. ... In some cases, the cost engineering can be more complex than the software engineering."

Submission + - After Avast & Comodo, It's Now Steam's Turn to Use an Insecure Chromium Vers (softpedia.com)

An anonymous reader writes: After the Avast (Avastium) and the Comodo (Chromodo) debacles, it's now Valve's turn to be shamed, as the Steam client is using an outdated Chromium version, and also runs with the --no-sandbox flag, eliminating a key security feature, and allowing attacks to trickle down from the Web page to the underlying operating system.
Earth

Carbon Dioxide From the Air Converted Into Methanol (gizmag.com) 102

Zothecula writes: The danger posed by rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide has seen many schemes proposed to remove a proportion it from the air. Rather than simply capture this greenhouse gas and bury it in the ground, though, many experiments have managed to transform CO2 into useful things like carbon nanofibers or even fuels, such as diesel. Unfortunately, the over-arching problem with many of these conversions is the particularly high operating temperatures that require counterproductive amounts of energy to produce relatively low yields of fuel. Now researchers at the University of Southern California (USC) claim to have devised a way to take CO2 directly from the air and convert it into methanol using much lower temperatures and in a correspondingly simpler way.
Social Networks

Instagram Launches Account Switching On iOS and Android (google.com) 25

Today, Instagram announced that users will be able to switch between up to five different accounts when using the app on iOS and Android. This new feature will be available later this week, when users download version 7.15 of the app. According to a blog post from the company, "Go to your profile settings to add an additional account. From there, tap your username at the top of your profile to switch between accounts. Once you have multiple accounts added, you'll see your profile photo appear in places throughout the app so you can always tell which one you're using at the moment."

Submission + - The Internet of Broken Things (hackaday.com)

szczys writes: The Internet of Things is all the hype these days. On one side we have companies clamoring to sell you Internet-Connected-everything to replace all of the stuff you already have that is now considered "dumb". On the other side are security researchers screaming that we're installing remote access with little thought about securing it properly. The truth is a little of both is happening, and that this isn't a new thing. It's been around for years in industry, the new part is that it's much wider spread and much closer to your life. Al Williams walks through some real examples of the unintended consequences of IoT, including his experiences building and deploying devices, and some recent IoT gaffs like the NEST firmware upgrade that had some users waking up to an icy-cold home.
Businesses

Sen. Blumenthal Demands Lifting of IT 'Gag' Order (computerworld.com) 159

dcblogs writes: U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) is asking the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the layoff and replacement of IT workers by foreign workers at a state energy utility. But he is also demanding that the utility, Eversource Energy, drop a particularly restrictive non-disparagement clause that laid off employees had to sign to receive their severance. This clause bars discussion "that would tend to disparage or discredit" the utility. [emphasis added] He wants the employees, who had to train foreign replacements, to be able to state "honestly what happened to them."

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