Submission + - Is it Time for Quantum Computing Startups? Maybe (ieee.org)

Tekla Perry writes: At IBM's Q Summit last week, researchers and entrepreneurs were optimistic that we'll REALLY have quantum computing in ten years (even though it's been ten years out for a lot longer than that.) VCs weren't quite as confident. Bill Coughran, a Sequoia Capital partner said, as an investor, “I’ve struggled with the question whether quantum computing is development or still research. VC firms think [along] a ten-year time horizon, not 20 or 30 years. Are we on the cusp of a breakthrough?... The question is still open.”

In the meantime, the early startups have to be prepared to cross the “long revenue desert," warned IBM's Joe Raffa. Still, IBM hoped the summit would spark startup efforts.

Submission + - Twitter Says It Will Comply With Honest Ads Act To Combat Russia Meddling (theverge.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Twitter today pledged to support a proposed Senate bill that would require technology platforms that sell advertising space to disclose the source of and amount of money paid for political ads. Called the Honest Ads Act, the bipartisan bill was first introduced back in October by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA), and Sen. John McCain (R-AZ). As part of its transparency efforts, Twitter says it’s launched a new platform called the Ads Transparency Center, or ATC, that will “go beyond the requirements of the Honest Ads Act and eventually provide increased transparency to all advertisements on Twitter.” Twitter says the platform will increase transparency for political and so-called issue ads, which target specific topics like immigration and gun control, by providing even more information on the origin of an ad that is required by the Honest Ads Act. “We have a dedicated team that is fully resourced to implementing the ATC and are committed to launching it this summer,” the company states. “Twitter is moving forward on our commitment to providing transparency for online ads. We believe the Honest Ads Act provides an appropriate framework for such ads and look forward to working with bill sponsors and others to continue to refine and advance this important proposal.”

Submission + - FTC warns Manufacturers that 'Warranty Void If Removed' Stickers Break the Law (vice.com)

schwit1 writes: The Federal Trade Commission put six companies on notice today, telling them in a warning letter that their warranty practices violate federal law. If you buy a car with a warranty, take it a repair shop to fix it, then have to return the car to the manufacturer, the car company isn’t legally allowed to deny the return because you took your car to another shop. The same is true of any consumer device that costs more than $15, though many manufacturers want you to think otherwise.

Companies such as Sony and Microsoft pepper the edges of their game consoles with warning labels telling customers that breaking the seal voids the warranty. That’s illegal. Thanks to the 1975 Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, no manufacturer is allowed to put repair restrictions on a device it offers a warranty on. Dozens of companies do it anyway, and the FTC has put them on notice. Apple, meanwhile, routinely tells customers not to use third party repair companies, and aftermarket parts regularly break iPhones due to software updates.

Submission + - Red Hat Enterprise Linux version 7.5 released

An anonymous reader writes: Red Hat today announced the general availability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux version 7.5. The latest version of the commercial enterprise Linux platform. Serving as a consistent foundation for hybrid cloud environments, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.5 provides enhanced security and compliance controls, tools to reduce storage costs, and improved usability, as well as further integration with Microsoft Windows infrastructure both on-premise and in Microsoft Azure. New feature includes a large combination of Ansible Automation with OpenSCAP, LUKS-encrypted removable storage devices can be now automatically unlocked using NBDE, Gnome 3.26, Kernel 3.10.0-862 and 4.14 for ARM/Power 8, KVM for POWER8, LibreOffice 5.3, GIMP 2.8.22, Inkscape 0.92.2 and much more. The detailed release note is here and a quick RHEL 7.4 to 7.5 update is posted here.

Submission + - Consequences of doing business in China (npr.org) 1

tomhath writes:

Beijing-based Sinovel, which provided three-quarters of Massachusetts-based American Superconductor's revenue, refused to accept a shipment of electronic components for its wind turbines — and wouldn't pay millions of dollars it owed for them. The reasons it gave were ambiguous.

Within weeks, the company concluded that Sinovel had somehow obtained the source code for its electronic components and was installing a pirated version in the wind turbines it sold.

"Participation in the Chinese market is for Chinese companies only. Your participation as a Western company, at least to date, is a mirage. They're there to bring you in, be able to figure a way to harvest whatever they can from you, and then spit you out when you're no longer useful."


Submission + - Study blames gender pay gap on motherhood (nytimes.com)

tomhath writes:

Women who have their first child before 25 or after 35 eventually close the salary divide with their husbands. It’s the years in between that are most problematic, research shows.

When women have their first child between age 25 and 35, their pay never recovers, relative to that of their husbands. Yet women who have their first baby either before 25 or after 35 — before their careers get started or once they’re established — eventually close the pay gap with their husbands.


Submission + - California Democrat introduces truthiness bill (ca.gov)

tiqui writes: California state senator Richard Pan has introduced a bill to regulate social media web sites and require fact checkers. Not only does this bill raise the problem of "who watches the watchers" in an era where we even disagree about which fact checkers are actually fact checking, but it begins to raise the bar for any new internet business which has functions that could be interpreted as "social media". Even apparently simple rules add complexity, compliance costs, and potential legal liabilities. Everybody in California who has a web site should look at this bill to see if you might end up as a law breaker.

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