LG won’t launch smartphones on regular basis, says will do it when needed

In what looks like a step aimed at bringing its money-losing smartphone division back to profit, LG has announced that it’s moving away from the regular smartphone launch strategy they’ve been following for years. The company said phones will be released only when needed. “We will unveil new smartphones when it is needed. But we will not launch it just because other rivals do,” said LG Electronics Vice Chairman Cho Sung-jin. He made the comment during a press conference at CES in Las Vegas while responding to a query on when the G7 will be released. The executive further added that…

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Intel details performance impact post security patches, says chipsets incur 6% performance drop

Intel today announced that the security patch fixing Meltdown and Spectre patches incurring 6% performance drop in most modern CPUs while the impact is bigger on older chipsets. The company further says that performance impact should not be significant for average computer users. Intel added that it didn’t receive any reports of the exploits obtaining customer data, but said that it will continue to patch things. The performance impact of the mitigation on 8th generation platforms (Kaby Lake, Coffee Lake) with SSDs is small across a variety of workloads and the expected impact is less than 6%, but in some cases, the impact might vary up to 10% depending on the nature of use cases.   The performance impact on 7th generationGen Kaby Lake-H mobile platforms is close to 8th with 7% drop on the SYSMark2014SE benchmark. As for the 6th generation Skylake-S platform, the impact might be slightly higher ranging from 7% to 8%, but mostly in-line with 7th and 8th generation platforms said Intel. The company said that in the coming week it will offer a representative set of data for mobile and desktop platforms that were launched within the past five years. The company assured that it will work on creative solutions with our industry partners …
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Facebook says it plans to transform the News Feed to promote “meaningful posts”

Facebook plans major changes to the News Feed in 2018 designed to promote more “meaningful” interactions, the company said Thursday. Facebook plans to promote posts that generate discussions over those that are passively consumed, it said. Company executives say they hope the changes will make people feel better about using Facebook, following a year in which critics have warned of its negative effects on society and high-profile former employees have distanced themselves from their creation.

“We feel a responsibility to make sure our services aren’t just fun to use, but also good for people’s well-being,” CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a post. Zuckerberg said that the vast increase in posts from publishers, both article links and video,…

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Home-Made Drones Bombed a Russian Airbase, Defense Ministry Says

Not Your Usual Drone Airstrike

The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed on January 8 that a swarm of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), or drones, have attacked their airbase in Syria on the night of January 5th. The drone strike is the latest of a recent flurry of mysterious attacks against Russian forces in Syria, and military officials are still clueless as to who’s behind them.

The Defense Ministry said that 13 small drones, what they described as a “massive application of unmanned aerial vehicles,” targeted two separate locations. Seven of these were neutralized by Russian anti-aircraft defenses, while the rest caused no significant damage after exploding upon touching the ground.

Image credit: Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation/FacebookImage credit: Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation/Facebook
Examining the captured UAVs, the Russian military discovered that they were crudely assembled. They carried locally made bombs fitted in small plastic fins under their wings. “It was the first time when terrorists applied a massed drone aircraft attack launched at a range of more than 50 km using modern GPS guidance system,” the Russian Defense Ministry’s official post said.

Swarming the Future

It’s hard not to think of that futuristic slaughterbots in that viral video, except that those were autonomous and the drones that attacked the Russians were most likely remotely controlled.

The use of drones for warfare isn’t something new, they have been used in various forms since the 19th century.

But swarms of small drones like the ones seen in Syria have only recently been employed in modern defense programs. Defense contractor Duke Robotics has one such program in the works, with an ordinary-looking multi-rotor drone called the TIKAD — except it really isn’t your regular hobbyist drone. The TIKAD is armed with a high-powered rifle.

Advocates of drone warfare see it as the future of military operations, and one where the lives of human soldiers need not be put in harm’s way. Deploying smaller drones could also end up becoming cheaper than using regular UAVs like the Predator.

So, as crude and rudimentary as those drones that bombed Russian forces were, the mysterious attackers are definitely up to something. The incident was, indeed, the first time a swarm of drones had been weaponized for a military strike — but it most definitely won’t be the last.

The post Home-Made Drones Bombed a Russian Airbase, Defense Ministry Says appeared first on Futurism.

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Researchers found a way into WhatsApp group chats — but Facebook says it’s not a problem

German cryptographers have found a way to infiltrate WhatsApp’s group chats despite its end-to-end encryption.

Researchers announced they had discovered flaws in WhatsApp’s security at the Real World Crypto security conference in Switzerland, Wired reports. Anyone who controls the app’s servers could insert new people into private group chats without needing admin permission.

Once a new person is in, the phone of each member of that group chat automatically shares secret keys with that person, giving them full access to all future messages, but not past ones. It would appear as if the new member had the permission of the admin to join.

“The confidentiality of the group is broken as soon as the uninvited member can obtain all the new…

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