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  1. Avast, which makes free antivirus software that's used by millions of people around the world, is reportedly selling "highly sensitive" web browsing data via a subsidiary company called Jumpshot. The software appears to track users clicks and movements across the web, and collects data on things like searches on Google and Google Maps, as well as visits to specific LinkedIn pages, YouTube vids and porn websites, according to an investigation published Monday by Motherboard and PCMag. The collected data is then reportedly repackaged and sold by Jumpshot, which says on its website that it's able to deliver data on users actions behind "the Internet's most valuable walled gardens." Some past and present Jumpshot customers, as well as potential clients, include Google, Yelp, Microsoft, Pepsi, Home Depot, Intuit and others, according to the report, which cites "leaked user data, contracts and other company documents." In an emailed statement Monday, a spokeswoman for Avast said Jumpshot doesn't acquire "personal identification information, including name, email address or contact details," and that users have always had the option to opt out of sharing data with Jumpshot. "As of July 2019, we had already begun implementing an explicit opt-in choice for all new downloads of our AV, and we are now also prompting our existing free users to make an opt-in or opt-out choice, a process which will be completed in February 2020," said the spokeswoman, adding that the company understands and takes seriously "the responsibility to balance user privacy with the necessary use of data for our core security products." Avast reportedly asks users to opt in to data collection via a pop-up message in the antivirus software. However, "multiple" users told Motherboard they were unaware that their browsing data was then sold. The company's privacy policy says, with consent, personal data is used to "create a de-identified data set that is provided to Jumpshot to build trend analytics products and services." Jumpshot didn't respond to a request for comment. https://www.cnet.com/news/antivirus-firm-avast-is-reportedly-selling-users-web-browsing-data/
  2. The highly-anticipated PlayStation 5 could be fully backwards compatible with titles from Sony's four major home consoles, according to a stunning report. According to HipHopGamer, Sony is reportedly working on a 'Remastering Engine' that would allow fans to run titles from PS1, PS2, PS3 and PS4 on the new home console. And the revolutionary tool would provide 'various enhancements' for older titles that are accessed on PS5. https://www.sportbible.com/news/gaming-ps5-could-be-backwards-compatible-with-games-from-ps1-ps2-ps3-ps4-20200103
  3. the only good thing that has come out of this tragic administration The Trump administration is preparing to ban flavored e-cigarettes as federal health officials call for restrictions to combat an outbreak of a mysterious lung disease that has sickened hundreds and killed at least six people, U.S. health secretary Alex Azar told reporters Wednesday. The Food and Drug Administration is currently finalizing its guidance to remove all non-tobacco flavors of e-cigarettes, including mint and menthol, from the market within 30 days. Companies might be able to reintroduce their flavors at a later date, so long as they submit a formal application and receive approval from the FDA. Vaping companies like Juul have been criticized for hooking children on e-cigarettes with their fruity flavors like mango and creme. The surge in underaged vaping, which U.S. health officials have labeled as an “epidemic,” is one of the reasons why they plan to ban them — at least until the FDA can thoroughly review their safety, Azar said after meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House on the issue. “The Trump Administration is making it clear that we intend to clear the market of flavored e-cigarettes to reverse the deeply concerning epidemic of youth e-cigarette use that is impacting children, families, schools and communities,” Azar, the Health and Human Services secretary, said in a statement. “We will not stand idly by as these products become an on-ramp to combustible cigarettes or nicotine addiction for a generation of youth.” It could take the FDA several weeks to develop the guidelines, Azar told reporters outside the White House with acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless. Shares of Altria, which owns a 35% stake in e-cigarette company Juul, fell by less than 1% while competitors PMI Group, Japan Tobacco, British American Tobacco and Imperial Brands all rose by between 1% and 3% in midday trading. Azar said they want to keep tobacco-flavored e-cigarettes on the market for adults who may be using them to quit smoking. The FDA has embraced e-cigarettes as a less harmful way for smokers to satisfy their nicotine addiction than smoking cigarettes. Skyrocketing numbers of minors started using the products, forcing the FDA to reverse course. “If we find that children start surging into tobacco flavored e-cigarettes or if we find marketing practices that target children and try to attract them into tobacco flavored e-cigarettes, we will engage in enforcement actions there also,” he told reporters. The FDA was supposed to start reviewing e-cigarettes, a relatively new market, last summer until former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb pushed back the review until 2022. The proposal outlined Wednesday essentially moves the FDA’s timeline to review flavors up to this year. All companies must submit applications in May 2020 per a federal court judge’s ruling issued in July. Preliminary data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s annual survey of teens showed more than a quarter of high school students used e-cigarettes within the past 30 days, with the “overwhelming majority” saying they vaped fruit and menthol or mint flavors, HHS said in a press release. The FDA is in the process of banning menthol cigarettes. Regulators have blamed the teen vaping “epidemic” on one e-cigarette manufacturer in particular, Juul. The San Francisco-based company makes a sleek device and fruity flavors like mango, creme and fruit. Its cartridges pack a powerful punch, with one pod delivering as much nicotine as a pack of cigarettes. Former White House spokesman Josh Raffel joined Juul’s communications team last year. Gottlieb labeled teen vaping an “epidemic” almost exactly a year ago. Under Gottlieb, the FDA moved to limit sales of fruity flavors to age-restricted stores, such as vape shops. Lawmakers and public health groups have urged the agency to do more, with Minority Whip Dick Durbin last week telling Sharpless to take “decisive action” or else resign. “Finally, the FDA is doing its job,” Durbin said in a statement Wednesday. American Vaping Association President Gregory Conley criticized the planned ban, saying in a statement it would “remove life-changing options from the market.” Wednesday’s announcement comes as members of Congress increasingly pressure the administration to rein in the e-cigarette industry. The CDC is investigating more than 450 cases of lung disease officials suspect were caused by vaping. Some officials have honed in on a vitamin E oil that’s been added to some THC vaping products as a possible cause. Regardless, the outbreak has fueled calls to restrict the e-cigarette industry amid what regulators are calling an “epidemic” of teen vaping. Trump called on the FDA to get to the bottom of the outbreak. https://www.cnbc.com/2019/09/11/trump-to-consider-e-cigarette-policy-amid-outbreak-of-lung-disease.html
  4. Today, Adobe announced its plans to stop supporting Flash at the end of 2020. For 20 years, Flash has helped shape the way that you play games, watch videos and run applications on the web. But over the last few years, Flash has become less common. Three years ago, 80 percent of desktop Chrome users visited a site with Flash each day. Today usage is only 17 percent and continues to decline. This trend reveals that sites are migrating to open web technologies, which are faster and more power-efficient than Flash. They’re also more secure, so you can be safer while shopping, banking, or reading sensitive documents. They also work on both mobile and desktop, so you can visit your favorite site anywhere. These open web technologies became the default experience for Chrome late last year when sites started needing to ask your permission to run Flash. Chrome will continue phasing out Flash over the next few years, first by asking for your permission to run Flash in more situations, and eventually disabling it by default. We will remove Flash completely from Chrome toward the end of 2020. If you regularly visit a site that uses Flash today, you may be wondering how this affects you. If the site migrates to open web standards, you shouldn’t notice much difference except that you'll no longer see prompts to run Flash on that site. If the site continues to use Flash, and you give the site permission to run Flash, it will work through the end of 2020. It’s taken a lot of close work with Adobe, other browsers, and major publishers to make sure the web is ready to be Flash-free. We’re supportive of Adobe’s announcement today, and we look forward to working with everyone to make the web even better. https://www.blog.google/products/chrome/saying-goodbye-flash-chrome/ ik it says it was posted July 25 2017 but still.
  5. https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/apple-is-finally-killing-itunes-842750/
  6. I noticed this with Instagram at school but didn't know what was wrong
  7. You probably didn't know brick manufacturing was contributing to our climate change woes, but these sturdy building blocks need to be cooked at around 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit (1,400 degrees Celsius) — and generating that kind of heat produces tons of carbon dioxide. But a team of South African scientists has discovered a process for making bricks that doesn't need firing at high temperatures. Through a process called microbial carbonate precipitation, the research team was able to create a limestone-hard "bio-brick" that solidifies at room temperature. The secret ingredient is human pee — an enzyme made by the bacteria breaks down the urea in the urine, binding grains of sand together into bricks that can be used to build a house or a bridge. In a press release from the University of Cape Town where the research was conducted, Dr. Dyllon Randall said that urine is, from a chemical standpoint, "liquid gold." By volume, pee makes up only 1 percent of what's in our domestic wastewater, but it contributes 80 percent of the nitrogen, 56 percent of the phosphorus and 63 percent of the potassium to the effluent that comes out of wastewater treatment plants. Bio-brick production would also produce nitrogen and phosphorous as byproducts, which could help with future fertilizer shortages. For the time being, we're diluting all this liquid gold and letting it flow into our rivers and streams, where it's not doing aquatic ecosystems any favors. But changing how we deal with pee is tricky. Researchers are working on how to collect and transport it, how to streamline the system for making the bio-bricks and how to then turn the byproducts into fertilizers. The ultimate challenge? Figuring out how to sell this idea to the public. "At the moment we're only dealing with urine collection from male urinals because that's socially accepted," said Randall. "But what about the other half of the population?" source: https://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/green-tech/sustainable/bricks-made-urine-pee-is-liquid-gold.htm
  8. Tumblr says that child pornography was the reason for its app’s sudden disappearance from the iOS App Store. The app has been missing from the store since November 16th, but until now the reason for its absence was unclear — initially Tumblr simply said it was “working to resolve the issue with the iOS app.” However, after Download.com approached Tumblr with sources claiming that the reason was related to the discovery of child pornography on the service, the Yahoo-owned social media network issued a new statement confirming the matter. In its updated statement, Tumblr said that while every image uploaded to the platform is “scanned against an industry database of child sexual abuse material” to filter out explicit images, a “routine audit” discovered content that was absent from the database, allowing it to slip through the filter. Although Tumblr says the content was immediately removed, its app continues to be unavailable on the App Store. It’s still available in the Google Play store for Android users, however. Tumblr has been noted for having a permissive attitude towards NSFW and adult-orientated content on its service, which has previously caused it to be briefly banned in Indonesia. However, child pornography is a completely different matter. Apple’s iOS guidelines clearly state that all apps must have a content filter to screen out such material, and it seems Tumblr’s existing system wasn’t up to this standard. Although the company has said getting its app reinstated is its “top priority,” it was unable to give any clear timeframe for its return. https://www.theverge.com/2018/11/20/18104366/tumblr-ios-app-child-pornography-removed-from-app-store
  9. New York City and Northern Virginia will be the homes for Amazon.com Inc.’s AMZN second and third headquarters, according to people familiar with the matter, ending a more than yearlong public contest that started with 238 candidates and ended with a surprise split of its so-called HQ2. The imminent announcement is expected as soon as Tuesday, according to the people. Other cities may also receive major sites, some of the people said. Amazon is dividing the second headquarters evenly between New York’s Long Island City and Arlington County’s Crystal City neighborhoods, which are both located directly across from the major city centers. The decision effectively gives Amazon a major presence in three coastal cities. Amazon declined to comment. The online retailer began the search across North America in September 2017, with the aim of creating a second, equal headquarters to its home base in Seattle. It had said the new location would house roughly 50,000 jobs and represent billions in investments. Amazon narrowed the contest to 20 finalist cities in January, then asked for reams of data and made whirlwind two-day site visits, during which cities tried to impress the company’s economic development team. https://www.wsj.com/articles/amazon-chooses-new-york-city-and-northern-virginia-for-additional-headquarters-1542075336
  10. The British/Kosovan music artist will launch a ground-breaking collaboration with Jaguar at an exclusive gig in Amsterdam on 3 September. The event kicks-off a series of Jaguar events across Europe, called The PACE: Season One, which celebrate the brand’s popular SUV models, the E-PACE, F-PACE and I-PACE. Dua Lipa, currently the most streamed female music artist in the world, will perform not with another artist but with the new Jaguar I-PACE – an electric performance SUV that has zero tailpipe emissions and can accelerate from 0-100km/h in 4.8 seconds. DUA LIPA MUSIC ARTIST Be part of it – 3 September from 22:00 CET Jaguar
  11. Apple becomes world's first trillion-dollar company Computing and mobile phone giant beats Amazon to landmark after its shares hit $207.05 Apple became the world’s first trillion-dollar company on Thursday, as a rise in its share price pushed it past the landmark before its closest rival for the honour, retail giant Amazon. The iMac to iPhone company, co-founded to sell personal computers by Steve Jobs in 1976, reached the historic milestone as its shares hit $207.05, the day after it posted strong financial results. Apple’s share price has grown 200% since Tim Cook replaced Jobs at chief executive in 2011. https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/aug/02/apple-becomes-worlds-first-trillion-dollar-company
  12. http://money.cnn.com/2018/06/01/technology/facebook-trending-topics/index.html
  13. http://money.cnn.com/2018/05/11/technology/cisco-youtube-no-ads/index.html
  14. https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/sprint-t-mobile-combine-deal-could-reshape-u-s-wireless-n869916
  15. https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2018/04/26/amazon-raise-annual-prime-subscription-119/556028002/
  16. https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2018/04/24/amazon-starts-delivering-your-car-wherever-its-parked/499900002/
  17. https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/talkingtech/2018/04/11/hulu-and-spotify-offer-cost-saving-dual-subscription-12-99-per-month/507789002/
  18. https://www.space.com/40245-tess-exoplanet-hunter-launch-one-week-away.html
  19. https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2018/04/09/youtube-hit-complaint-child-advocacy-groups-which-say-illegally-targets-kids/482024002/
  20. https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/talkingtech/2018/04/09/apple-announces-product-red-iphone-8-and-8-plus-models-help-combat-aids/498875002/
  21. So FB has been exposed as a data-miner of your personal information and allowing companies to take advantage of you without you knowing. You may not know this, but anytime you use your FB login on a third party website, you give that site "permission" to data-mine your personal information to use as they see fit. The Guardian UK was first to expose them in 2012, but it wasn't until their recent article that anyone noticed or understood the severity. This may be a political article, but it's not exclusive to political analytics. Any website that allows you to use you FB login can siphon your data. Personally, I gave-up on FB in 2011. I would never use it or any of their apps (Instagram/ WhatsApp). They have morphed from a "social media" company to a "marketing analytics" firm. Article: On Sunday, The Guardian reported on the supposedly nefarious workings of President Trump’s data-gathering team at Cambridge Analytica. The report suggested that Cambridge Analytica had essentially issued questionnaires through a third party; those questionnaires, which were personality quizzes, requested that you use your FB login. Cambridge Analytica then compiled data regarding those who completed the quiz and cross-referenced that data with political preferences in order to target potential voters. This isn’t particularly shocking. In 2012, The Guardian reported that President Obama’s reelection team was “building a vast digital data operation that for the first time combines a unified database on millions of Americans with the power of FB to target individual voters to a degree never achieved before.” What, exactly, would Obama be doing? According to The Guardian, Obama’s new database would be gathered by asking individual volunteers to log into Obama’s reelection site using their FB credentials. “Consciously or otherwise,” The Guardian states, “the individual volunteer will be injecting all the information they store publicly on their FB page — home location, date of birth, interests and, crucially, network of friends — directly into the central Obama database.”