Blog Rolls

The World’s Fastest Supercomputer Breaks an AI Record

Wired Top Stories - Thu, 01/31/2019 - 17:58
Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory are training Summit, the world's fastest supercomputer, to model climate change using machine learning techniques.
Categories: Just News

Juan Guaidó Claims Police Raided His Home As He Struggles To Consolidate Power

Juan Guaidó accuses Venezuela's President Nicolás Maduro of sending police to intimidate his family. The U.S.-backed opposition leader seeks to oust Maduro and replace him as interim president.

(Image credit: Federico Parra/AFP/Getty Images)

Categories: Just News

Howard Schultz: Presidential Hopeful, Twitter Ratio King

Wired Top Stories - Thu, 01/31/2019 - 17:14
The billionaire and former Starbucks CEO has no reasonable chance of becoming president, but he’s already the undisputed champion of the Twitter ratio.
Categories: Just News

Polar Vortex's End Is Near, Forecasters Say, Promising A Strong Warmup

By Saturday, the National Weather Service says, the central Plains area will see temperatures in the low 60s — nearly 20-25 degrees above normal.

(Image credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Categories: Just News

One Lawyer, One Day, 194 Felony Cases

The New York Times – “High-level felonies carry sentences of 10 years or more and should each get 70 hours of legal attention, according to a workload study. For Mr. Talaska, that’s more than two years of full-time work. Mid-level felonies require 41 hours each.A few of Mr. Talaska’s clients faced life without parole. Such cases, on average, require 201 hours apiece. In total, Mr. Talaska needed to do the work of five full-time lawyers to serve all of his clients. Mr. Talaska was not outside the norm. Of the public defenders in Louisiana handling felony caseloads at that time, there were two dozen with even more clients. One had 413. The numbers alone might seem to violate the Constitution. Poor defendants in the United States have the right to a competent lawyer, and hundreds of thousands of defendants rest their hopes on someone like Mr. Talaska. But there has never been any guarantee that those lawyers would have enough time to handle their cases. That’s why the study cited above, which looked at the workloads of public defenders, is significant…”

Categories: Law and Legal

Senate Republicans Rebuke President On Syria And Afghanistan Policy

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's amendment opposing a "precipitous withdrawal" from Syria was backed by many GOP senators who disagree with the president's foreign policy.

(Image credit: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Categories: Just News

Exploring The Mysterious Origins Of Mars' 3-Mile-High Sand Pile

Space scientists on Earth have improvised a tool on the Mars rover to help them figure out how a giant mountain on the Red Planet came to be. Their surprising conclusion: It's likely windswept sand.

(Image credit: MSSS/ NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Categories: Just News

U.S. Court Orders Syria To Pay $300 Million For Killing Of Journalist Marie Colvin

The judge ruled that Colvin was killed by Syria and "targeted because of her profession, for the purpose of silencing those reporting on the growing opposition movement in the country."

(Image credit: Arthur Edwards/ WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Categories: Just News

Here's How PG&E's Bankruptcy Might Hurt California's Ambitious Climate Goals

PG&E is key to helping California meet its ambitious goal of zero carbon electricity by mid-century. Now there's concern that the utility's bankruptcy may set that back.

(Image credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Categories: Just News

Finding Lena Forsen, the Patron Saint of JPEGs

Wired Top Stories - Thu, 01/31/2019 - 15:19
In 1972, a photo of a Swedish Playboy model was used to engineer the digital image format that would become the JPEG. The model herself was mostly a mystery—until now.
Categories: Just News

Huawei Is Blocked in U.S., But Its Chips Power Cameras Everywhere

Bloomberg [paywall – alternate free article via Gadget Hours]: “Pelco, a California-based security camera maker, set lofty sales targets last year for a model with sharper video resolution and other cutting-edge features. That was until Congress derailed its plans. In August, updated legislation barred the U.S. military and government from buying tech gear from firms deemed too close to authorities in China. When the bill surfaced, Pelco scrapped any thought of providing its new GPC Professional 4K camera to the U.S. government and lowered its sales goals. The reason: The device uses parts from HiSilicon, the chip division of Huawei Technologies Co. Huawei, China’s largest technology company, is the target of a broad U.S. crackdown over allegations it has stolen trade secrets, violated sanctions against Iran and sells equipment that could be used by the country’s Communist Party for spying.

Most of the focus is on Huawei telecom gear that helps run communications networks all over the world. But chips from the HiSilicon unit are also sparking concern because they power about 60 percent of surveillance cameras. That means Chinese chips process video from cameras that sit in places as varied as pizzerias, offices and banks across the U.S…”

Categories: Law and Legal

An early look at the 2020 electorate

Pew Research Center: “The 2020 U.S. presidential election is rapidly coming into view – and so is the electorate that will determine its outcome. While demographic changes unfold slowly, it’s already clear that the 2020 electorate will be unique in several ways. Nonwhites will account for a third of eligible voters – their largest share ever – driven by long-term increases among certain groups, especially Hispanics. At the same time, one-in-ten eligible voters will be members of Generation Z,  the Americans who will be between the ages 18 and 23 next year. That will occur as Millennials and all other older generations account for a smaller share of eligible voters than they did in 2016…

We project that the 2020 election will mark the first time that Hispanics will be the largest racial or ethnic minority group in the electorate, accounting for just over 13% of eligible voters – slightly more than blacks. This change reflects the gradual but continuous growth in the Hispanic share of eligible voters, up from 9% in the 2008 presidential election and 7% in the 2000 election. The black eligible voter population has grown about as fast as the electorate overall, meaning their share has held constant at about 12% since 2000…”

Categories: Law and Legal

Humanics – A Way to robot-proof your career

BBC: To prepare for a future where AI will likely disrupt entire industries, some say we’ll have to rethink how we educate future generations – “Estimates about how much of the workforce could be automated vary from about 9% to 47%. The consultancy McKinsey estimates up to 800 million workers globally could be displaced by robotic automation by 2030. Some jobs will change dramatically, while others will disappear altogether. So if automation makes the job market a little like a game of musical chairs, is there a way to make sure you’re still employed when the music stops? Can education help you robot-proof your career? Future-proofing your career is less about picking a safe job and more about constantly updating your skills throughout your career, according to Northeastern University president Joseph Aoun, who wrote Robot-Proof: Higher Education in the Age of Artificial Intelligence. He says education needs to change dramatically if workers are to adapt to this new environment. His solution, which he calls humanics, has three basic pillars:

  • Technical ability: understanding how machines function and how to interact with them. As both artificial intelligence and robotics become ever more capable, machines will step into roles once monopolised by humans. Some employees won’t last, but others will find themselves working with machines, and probably being vastly more productive as a result. Workers with a grounding in coding and engineering principles will be better placed to thrive in this new kind of workplace.
  • Data discipline: navigating the sea of information that’s generated by these machines. Workers will need data literacy to read, analyse and use the almost bottomless troves of information that are increasingly guiding everything from major business decisions to stock picks to purchasing decisions.
  • And the human discipline: “which is what we humans can do that machines for the foreseeable future, cannot emulate.” Aoun says this includes creativity, cultural agility, empathy and the ability to take information from one context and apply it to another. In educational terms, this means less emphasis on the classroom and a greater emphasis on experiential learning…”
Categories: Law and Legal

Public’s 2019 Priorities: Economy, Health Care, Education and Security

Pew – The U.S. Public’s 2019 Policy Priorities: – Growing share sees ‘great deal of difference’ between the parties: “At the outset of Donald Trump’s third year in office, the public’s to-do list for the president and the 116th Congress spans domains with the economy, health care costs, education and preventing terrorism all cited as top priorities by majorities of Americans. The public’s agenda for the president and Congress is only modestly different from a year ago, but it reflects a continued evolution of the national agenda. Improving the economy (70% top priority) remains among the public’s highest priorities, but its prominence has waned significantly in recent years. In 2011, following the Great Recession, 87% called it a top priority. And as public ratings of the employment situation have grown increasingly positive, 50% now say improving the job situation should be a top priority; in each of the previous 10 years, majorities cited jobs as a top priority, including 84% who said this in 2011 and 68% who said this as recently as 2017. Most (67%) continue to say defending the country from future terrorist attacks is a top priority, though this is one of the lowest shares citing the issue since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and far lower than the roughly eight-in-ten who called it a top priority through much of the early to mid-2000s.

As economic and security concerns have become less prominent, the domestic issues of reducing health care costs (69% top priority) and improving the educational system (68%) now rank among the top tier of public priorities. About two-thirds also say that taking steps to make the Social Security (67%) and Medicare (67%) systems financially sound are top priorities for the country…”

Categories: Law and Legal

Sick And Tired? Scientists Find Protein That Puts Flies To Sleep And Fights Infection

In the search for what triggers sleep, researchers stumbled upon a link between sleep and the immune system. A single fly gene gets turned on in sick flies, inducing sleep and an immune response.

(Image credit: Andrew Syred/Science Source )

Categories: Just News

'The Batman' Will Hit Theaters in 2021—Minus Ben Affleck

Wired Top Stories - Thu, 01/31/2019 - 14:09
Also, Zack Snyder is making a zombie movie for Netflix, and Oscar Isaac and Zendaya might be joining *Dune*.
Categories: Just News

Could Chinese Telecom Giant Huawei Put U.S. Cyber-Security At Risk?

NY Times reporter David Sanger says the world's leading producer of telecom equipment will be central to the spread of a global 5G network — which could pose a major threat to U.S. national security.

Categories: Just News

WHO Warns Of Dire Conditions, Deaths Of Children At Refugee Camp In Syria

More than 20,000 people, mostly women and children, have arrived at the Al-Hol camp in northeastern Syria in just two months. The World Health Organization says aid workers are struggling to keep up.

(Image credit: Delil Souleiman/AFP/Getty Images)

Categories: Just News

An App That Promoted Cyberbullying Shifts to the Workplace

Wired Top Stories - Thu, 01/31/2019 - 12:56
Sarahah was banned from app stores because it became a vehicle for cyberbullying. Its creators are introducing Enoff, for anonymous workplace feedback.
Categories: Just News

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