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+ - Amazon acquires Twitch for $970 million

Submitted by rtoz
rtoz (2530056) writes "Amazon has agreed to buy the massively popular video game streaming website Twitch in an all-cash deal of around $970 million.

This deal came just months after numerous reports that Google had a deal to acquire Twitch.

According to the CEO ( Emmett Shear) of Twitch, Amazon plans to let Twitch operate independently, out of its offices in San Francisco. It seems Twitch decides to choose Amazon over Google because of this reason.

Twitch did not exist a little over three years ago, and it now has 55 million unique viewers a month globally.

Twitch specializes in live videos of the people playing games."

+ - Why do humans grow up so slowly? Blame the brain->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "Humans are late bloomers when compared with other primates—they spend almost twice as long in childhood and adolescence as chimps, gibbons, or macaques do. But why? One widely accepted but hard-to-test theory is that children’s brains consume so much energy that they divert glucose from the rest of the body, slowing growth. Now, a clever study of glucose uptake and body growth in children confirms this “expensive tissue” hypothesis."
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+ - The Evolution of Diet

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Here's a story from National Geographic that looks at the historical diets of people from around the world and what that diet might look like in the future. From the article: "So far studies of foragers like the Tsimane, Arctic Inuit, and Hadza have found that these peoples traditionally didn’t develop high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, or cardiovascular disease. 'A lot of people believe there is a discordance between what we eat today and what our ancestors evolved to eat,' says paleoanthropologist Peter Ungar of the University of Arkansas. The notion that we’re trapped in Stone Age bodies in a fast-food world is driving the current craze for Paleolithic diets. The popularity of these so-called caveman or Stone Age diets is based on the idea that modern humans evolved to eat the way hunter-gatherers did during the Paleolithic—the period from about 2.6 million years ago to the start of the agricultural revolution—and that our genes haven’t had enough time to adapt to farmed foods.""

+ - Uber's new problem - Assaults and Carjackings->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Uber has come under attack lately from taxi drivers to government regulators. However, a new problem has risen up. Uber drivers in LA are reporting assaults at gunpoint, their phones stolen, even carjackings, s. Uber drivers suspect the taxi industry since the phones (ancient iPhone 4 models issued by Uber to the drivers) are effectively worthless, but taking them ensures the driver cannot pick up new fares. The drivers are rapidly discovered using the client-side Uber app which shows which drivers are nearby for pickup. Of course, it could be coincidental as well, since taxi driving is among the most dangerous jobs out there (approximately 18% of all taxi drivers are injured from assaults or other violent acts)."
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+ - Experimental drug stops Ebola-like infection->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "An experimental treatment against an Ebola-related virus can protect monkeys even when given up to 3 days after infection, the point at which they show the first signs of disease. The virus, known as Marburg, causes severe hemorrhagic fever—vomiting, diarrhea, and internal bleeding. In one outbreak, it killed 90% of people it infected. There are no proven treatments or vaccines against it. The new results raise hopes that the treatment might be useful for human patients even if they don’t receive it until well after infection. The company that makes the compound, Tekmira, based in Burnaby, Canada, has started a human safety trial of a related drug to treat Ebola virus disease, and researchers hope that it, too, might offer protection even after a patient has started to feel ill."
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+ - Professor Steve Ballmer Will Teach At Two Universities This Year->

Submitted by redletterdave
redletterdave (2493036) writes "When Steve Ballmer announced he was stepping down from Microsoft’s board of directors, he cited a fall schedule that would 'be hectic between teaching a new class and the start of the NBA season.' It turns out Ballmer will teach an MBA class at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business in the fall, and a class at USC’s Marshall School of Business in the spring. Helen Chang, assistant director of communications at Stanford’s Business School, told Business Insider that Ballmer will be working with faculty member Susan Athey for a strategic management course called 'TRAMGT588: Leading organizations.' As for the spring semester, Ballmer will head to Los Angeles — closer to where his Clippers will be playing — and teach a course at University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business. We reached out to the Marshall School, which declined to offer more details about Ballmer’s class."
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+ - Seals infected early Americans with tuberculosis->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "We catch new flu viruses from ducks and pigs. And Ebola, the disease that's got the world worried at the moment, may have originated in bats. Now, a study of microbial DNA isolated from 1000-year-old Peruvian mummies blames seals for spreading tuberculosis (TB) to humans in South America long before European settlers arrived. "This work provides an entirely new vista on the arrival of [TB] in the New World, and also the potential role of sea mammals in the global dissemination of the TB [bacteria]," says Stephen Gordon, a microbiologist at University College Dublin who was not involved in the work. The analysis also indicates that TB as a human disease is much younger than researchers have thought."
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+ - How patent trolls destroy innovation->

Submitted by walterbyrd
walterbyrd (182728) writes "A new study by researchers at Harvard and the University of Texas provides some insight on this question. Drawing from data on litigation, R&D spending, and patent citations, the researchers find that firms that are forced to pay NPEs (either because they lost a lawsuit or settled out of court) dramatically reduce R&D spending: losing firms spent $211 million less on R&D, on average, than firms that won a lawsuit against a troll.

"After losing to NPEs, firms significantly reduce R&D spending — both projects inside the firm and acquiring innovative R&D outside the firm," the authors write. "Our evidence suggests that it really is the NPE litigation event that causes this decrease in innovation."

Link to Original Source

+ - Operating systems still matter in a containerized world

Submitted by Jason Baker
Jason Baker (3516395) writes "With the rise of Docker containers as an alternative for deploying complex server-based applications, one might wonder, does the operating system even matter anymore? Certainly the question gets asked periodically. Gordon Haff makes the argument on Opensource.com that the operating system is still very much alive and kicking, and that a hardened, tuned, reliable operating system is just as important to the success of applications as it was in the pre-container data center."

+ - Training Materials Leaked from Comcast

Submitted by WheezyJoe
WheezyJoe (1168567) writes "Ars Technica and the Verge report how leaked training manuals from Comcast show how selling services is a required part of the job, even for employees doing tech support. The so-called "the 4S training material" explicitly states that 20 percent of a call center employee’s rating for a given call is dependent on effectively selling the customer new Comcast services.
"There are pages of materials on 'probing' customers to ferret out upsell opportunities, as well as on batting aside customer objections to being told they need to buy something. 'We can certainly look at other options, but you would lose which you mentioned was important to you,' the guide suggests clumsily saying to an angry customer who doesn’t want to buy any more Comcast services."
Images of the leaked documents are posted on the Verge, making for fun reading."

+ - Scientists find traces of sea plankton on ISS surface->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "An experiment of taking samples from illuminators and the ISS surface has brought unique results, as scientists had found traces of sea plankton there, the chief of an orbital mission on Russia’s ISS segment told reporters.

Results of the scope of scientific experiments which had been conducted for a quite long time were summed up in the previous year, confirming that some organisms can live on the surface of the International Space Station (ISS) for years amid factors of a space flight, such as zero gravity, temperature conditions and hard cosmic radiation. Several surveys proved that these organisms can even develop.

He noted that it was not quite clear how these microscopic particles could have appeared on the surface of the space station."

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+ - FarmBot: An Open Source Automated Farming Machine Aims to Create Food For All->

Submitted by ErnieKey
ErnieKey (3766427) writes "Farming has been stuck in a bit of a rut, when compared to other industries. Businesses across the globe have been innovating for decades, while farming has been using techniques that have been handed down from centuries ago. The FarmBot Foundation is creating a machine, similar to that of a CNC mill and/or 3d printer which is capable of being run by sophisticated software and equipped with any tools you can imagine, including seed injectors, plows, burners, robotic arms (for harvesting), cutters, shredders, tillers, discers, watering nozzles, sensors and more. The goal? To bring food to the world's hungry."
Link to Original Source

+ - Intel's Tiny Galileo Board Gets Custom Windows 8.1 Version->

Submitted by jfruh
jfruh (300774) writes "Intel, trying to work its way into the hobbyist market revealed by enthusiasm around the tiny Raspberry Pi computer, has come up with its own credit-card-sized Arduino-certified gadget, the Galileo. Now Microsoft is getting in on the game by offering a customized version of Windows 8.1 that can run on the hardware."
Link to Original Source

+ - Research Unveils Improved Method To Let Computers Know You Are Human

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "CAPTCHA services that require users to recognize and type in static distorted characters may be a method of the past, according to studies published by researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Researchers focused on a broad form of gamelike CAPTCHAs, called dynamic cognitive game, or DCG, CAPTCHAs, which challenge the user to perform a gamelike cognitive task interacting with a series of dynamic images. For example, in a “ship parking” DCG challenge, the user is required to identify the boat from a set of moving objects and drag-and-drop it to the available “dock” location. The puzzle is easy for the human user to solve, but may be difficult for a computer program to figure out. Also, its gamelike nature may make the process more engaging for the user compared to conventional text-based CAPTCHAs."

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