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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

Red Dead Redemption 2 has sold over 17 million copies worldwide – CNET

Rockstar’s new cowboy game sold more copies in 8 days than the original sold in 8 years.
Source: CNET

Is Oumuamua an asteroid? An explanation weirder than aliens – CNET

Harvard researchers grabbed headlines with the notion that the famed interstellar object may have been an alien spaceship, but here are the other top theories.
Source: CNET

Georgia’s secretary of state Brian Kemp doxes thousands of absentee voters

Georgia’s secretary of state and candidate for state governor in the midterm election, Brian Kemp, has taken the unusual, if not unprecedented step of posting the personal details of 291,164 absentee voters online for anyone to download.

Kemp’s office posted an Excel file on its website within hours of the results of the general election, exposing the names and addresses of state residents who mailed in an absentee ballot — including their reason why, such as if a person is “disabled” or “elderly.”

People on Twitter quickly noticed, expressing anger.

The file, according to the web page, allows Georgia residents to “check the status of your mail-in absentee ballot.” Millions of Americans across the country mail in their completed ballots ahead of election day, particularly if getting to a polling place is difficult — such as if a person is disabled, elderly or traveling.

When reached, Georgia secretary of state’s press secretary Candice Broce told TechCrunch that all of the data “is clearly designated as public information under state law,” and denied that the data was “confidential or sensitive.”

“State law requires the public availability of voter lists, including names and address of registered voters,” she said in an email.

That might be technically true. Voter and electoral roll data is public and available, usually for a fee, though rules vary state by state. Names and addresses of voters can be requested from each state’s electoral commission or secretary of state’s office. Political analytics firms often taken this data and supplement it with their own polling data to try to determine potential swing voters.

State laws put heavy restrictions on what can be done with voter data; rules that may not apply to the general public who can now just readily download hundreds of thousands of voter records.

It’s little surprise that the way Kemp’s office approached confirming absentee ballots was met with anger.

“While the data may already be public, it is not publicly available in aggregate like this,” said security expert Jake Williams, founder of Rendition Infosec, who lives in Georgia. Williams took issue with the reasons that the state gave for each absentee ballot, saying it “could be used by criminals to target currently unoccupied properties.”

“Releasing this data in aggregate could be seen as suppressing future absentee voters in Georgia who do not want their information released in this manner,” he said.

Not long after TechCrunch’s inquiry, the link to the downloadable file had been removed from the website.

Republican candidate for governor Kemp — at the time of writing — received 50.3 percent of the vote on Tuesday, ahead of Democratic rival Stacey Abrams, who currently serves as the minority leader in the state’s House of Representatives.

Kemp, who as secretary of state effectively runs the state’s elections despite running in one, has been accused of voter suppression in recent weeks, including accusing the Democrats of hacking his office’s election systems, citing no evidence. It’s not the first time he’s pulled the hacking card — Kemp tried a similar move two years ago.

Kemp was also responsible for purging the voter records of more than 50,000 minority voters ahead of this week’s elections.

Abrams has refused to concede in the race for governor, amid hopes of a runoff.


Source: TechCrunch

El teclado QWERTY mantiene su reinado, aunque tiene nuevos rivales

Desde que se popularizaran las primeras máquinas de escribir hace casi 150 años, el teclado QWERTY es el gran favorito. Dispositivos que captan los movimientos de nuestros dedos o cascos que descifran la actividad cerebral intentarán destronarle, pero estamos demasiado acostumbrados al teclado del ordenador
Source: MIT

Una IA aprende trucos de los físicos para el avance de la ciencia

Dos investigadores han desarrollado una inteligencia artificial a la que han educado con los procesos que suelen usar los físicos para comprender el mundo real.  Gracias a ello, su sistema fue capaz de descubrir leyes físicas en mundos que simulaban la complejidad del universo, ‘trabajando’ como un científico
Source: MIT

Samsung’s dual-screen folding phone is very strange and probably doomed

Let me just say that I love the idea of a folding phone/tablet device. I was a Courier fanboy when Microsoft floated that intriguing but abortive concept device, and I’m all for unique form factors and things that bend. But Samsung’s first real shot at a folding device is inexplicable and probably dead on arrival. I’d like to congratulate the company for trying something new, but this one needed a little more time in the oven.

I haven’t used it, of course, so this is just my uninformed opinion (provided for your edification). But this device is really weird, and not in a good way. It’s a really thick phone with big bezels around a small screen that opens up into a small tablet. No one wants that!

Think about it. Why do you want a big screen?

If it’s for media, like most people, consider that nearly all that media is widescreen now, either horizontal (YouTube and Netflix) or vertical (Instagram and Facebook). You can switch between these views at will extremely easily. Now consider that because of basic geometry, the “big” screen inside this device will likely not be able to show that media much, if any, larger than the screen on the front!

(Well, in this device’s case, maybe a little, but only because that front display’s bezel really is huge. Why do you think they turned the lights off? Look where the notification bar is!)

It’s like putting two of the tall screens next to each other. You end up with one twice as wide, but that’s pretty much what you get if you put the phone on its side. All you gain with the big screen is a whole lot of letterboxing or windowboxing. Oh, and probably about three quarters of an inch of thickness and half a pound of weight. This thing is going to be a beast.

Power users may also want a big screen for productivity: email and document handling and such is great on a big device like a Galaxy Note. Here then is opportunity for a folding tablet to excel (so to speak). You can just plain fit more words and charts and controls on there. Great! But if the phone is geared toward power users, why even have the small screen on the front anyway if any time that user wants to engage with the phone they will “open” it up? For quick responses or dismissing notifications, maybe, but who would really want that? That experience will always be inferior to the one the entire device is designed around.

I would welcome a phone that was only a book-style big internal screen, and I don’t think it would be a bother to flip it open when you want to use it. Lots of people with giant phones keep book-like covers on their devices anyway! It would be great to be able to use those square inches for the display rather than credit card slots or something.

The Courier had tons of great ideas on how to use two screens.

There are also creative ways to use the screen: left and right halves are different apps; top half is compose and bottom is keyboard; left half is inbox and right half is content; top half is media and bottom is controls and comments. Those sprang to mind faster than I could type them.

On the other hand, I can’t think of any way that a “front” display could meaningfully interact with or enhance a secondary (or is it primary?) display that will never be simultaneously visible. Presumably you’ll use one or the other at any given time, meaning you literally can’t engage the entire capability of the device.

You know what would be cool? A device like this that also used the bezel display we’ve seen on existing Galaxy devices. How cool would it be to have your phone closed like a book, but with an always-on notification strip (or two!) on the lip, telling you battery, messages and so on? And maybe if you tapped once the device would automatically pop open physically! That would be amazing! And Samsung is absolutely the company that I’d say would make it.

Instead, they made this thing.

It’s disappointing to me not just because I don’t like the device as they’ve designed it, but because I think the inevitable failure of the phone will cool industry ambition regarding unique devices like it. That’s wrong, though! People want cool new things. But they also want them to make sense.

I’m looking forward to how this technology plays out, and I fully expect to own a folding phone some time in the next few years. But this first device seems to me like a major misstep, and one that will set back that flexible future rather than advance it.


Source: TechCrunch

Photos: New Yorkers Wait 'on Line' to Vote in Midterms

In the face of big lines, bad weather, and extra-long ballots, perseverance is key.
Source: Wired

Boeing Issues Safety Warning After a Fatal 737 MAX Nosedive

The plane builder wants pilots to brush up on what to do if a faulty sensor sends a 737 MAX into a dive.
Source: Wired

How to Hack an Election (Without Touching the Machines)

In 2018, we should worry less about bot-nets and more about the oldest political tricks: misdirection, misinformation, and outright voter suppression.
Source: Wired

Here’s what Samsung’s wacky folding phone looks like in action

As rumored, Samsung showed off a prototype of a folding display today. Folded, it’s a smartphone. Unfolded, it’s a tablet. Neat!

Less neat: The company sort of went out of its way to not really show very much. A prototype was onstage for about 45 seconds, and it was deliberately backlit to be intensely silhouetted. They “disguised the elements of the design” to keep secret whatever secret sauce they have.

Finding that clip of the prototype folding/unfolding means digging through Samsung’s two-hour developer keynote, so we went ahead and GIF’d it up for you.

Here’s what it looks like going from phone mode to tablet mode:

And from tablet mode back to a more pocket-friendly phone mode:

While this isn’t the first folding phone we’ve seen , it also won’t be the last. With Google officially adding support for folding displays into Android as of this morning, it sounds like they’ve got reason to think a number of manufacturers are dabbling with this concept — enough of them, at least, to make it worthwhile to wire these changes into the main Android codebase.

If you want to see the relevant bit of the Samsung keynote for yourself, it starts juuuust before the 1 hour and 25 minute mark in the stream embedded below:


Source: TechCrunch

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