Malaysia is one step closer to outlawing fake news

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Last week, the Malaysian government proposed a law that would criminalize the spread of fake news and today, the country's parliament pushed the bill one step closer to enaction. The lower house of parliament voted to approve the bill today and it no…
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Jimmy Iovine to step down as Apple Music chief in August, take on consulting role, report says

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The music industry luminary, part of Apple since the Beats purchase in 2014, plans to give up day-to-day involvement but will stay with the company.
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Efforts in Disaster Prediction Take a Step Further with IoT Sensors

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The past decade has seen hundreds of natural disasters in various countries. While the US stays one of the most affected ones, developing countries remain the major sufferers particularly due to denser population and poor evacuation infrastructure. Catastrophic events lead to massive destruction of property and incalculable loss of human and animal life, and handling the post-event adversity is an extremely challenging task that follows.

Is IoT making an impact in efficient natural disaster preparedness?

With adverse climate change becoming more of a concern for the entire world, experts continue to explore the use of the Internet of Things technology in addressing and optimizing the emergencies that arise as a result of natural calamities. Whether the occurrence includes earthquake, tsunami, wildfire, volcanic eruption, flood, hurricane, tornado, landslide, extreme weather conditions, or any geological process, the loss is often uncontrollable. However, we are fortunately in an era where the immense advancement in technology can help to reduce the intensity of immediate and eventual effects. To be precise, the Internet of Things technology has become sophisticated in no time – extending its practical application areas. Several researchers, scientists, and IoT experts from around the world have been taking efforts to deploy this smart technology in minimizing the destruction caused due to natural disasters.

IoT, although cannot prevent any disaster from happening, can definitely aid in efficient disaster preparedness. It has been found to be useful in predicting the upcoming event and delivering an early warning to community through smart systems.

Why is IoT a highly potential technology in disaster prediction and management?

The very first application is, by default, to minimize and possibly prevent the risk of a natural catastrophic event. With the help of GIS, smart devices, and satellite communication, the IoT technology can be used to design the systems meant for early warning.

Following this, awareness about the upcoming event is another important application. What could create awareness and offer quick guidelines about the preparedness better than social media? Conventional media also play a major role.

Real-time communication in order to deliver an emergency response is the next potential application of IoT here.

The most challenging and probably the most exhaustive job that follows any disastrous event is recovery and rescue. The IoT technology can be efficiently used in creating online systems that search missing people and even manage emergency funds.

Moreover, IoT-enabled devices and systems can function as an alternative way for communication when the conventional infrastructure for communication is poor, sensitive, or not working. Though the latest innovations in IoT do not directly account for disaster preparedness, they do bring about excellent disaster resilience. However, deployment of IoT-enabled devices helps here in a totally different way. It does not help in disaster preparedness and resilience but enables a viable option to communicate in such circumstances, in form of limited or emergency communication.

How do IoT sensors contribute in disaster preparedness?

IoT sensors development is perceived to be an excellent innovation that poses itself as an efficient solution to the lack of foresight which intensifies the adversity of any natural disaster and the following emergency situation. This is exactly what the sensors concentrate on, by monitoring multiple climatic parameters. IoT sensors can be installed within a particular area to create a system that ultimately acts as an emergency unit in case of catastrophic events. Weather parameters, such as humidity, moisture, temperature, air quality, pressure, water level, and many more are constantly monitored by these sensors and the moment any one or more of them reach a dangerous level, the sensor network grasps it.

Any other notification system could hardly match up the speed of sensors notification, when it comes to alerting emergency responders and message broadcasters. Moreover, sensors contribute to the available data that provides the real-time details about weather, possible ways of evacuation, traffic, medical services, and police. They in a nutshell anticipate the upcoming hazards well in advance so as to help decisions regarding the next plan of action.

Sensors that are designed to predict flood situations through identification of possible critical hazards affecting infrastructure, have to be installed in a strategic manner. Flood depiction and management system can be complicated but if well planned and implemented, its versatility does an excellent job in flood-like events. Several IoT sensor network systems can efficiently function on an automated response solely on the basis of the real-time data absorbed by the sensors. In case of a forest fire, IoT sensors on trees monitor temperature, moisture, CO and CO2 levels. Local population is notified in advance and all the details are informed to firefighters even before they reach the location.

Researchers are further working on specific IoT sensor types, including infrared and microwave. While the former one may have its application in flood prediction and management, the latter one is foreseen to be a valuable sensor in case of earthquakes.

The post Efforts in Disaster Prediction Take a Step Further with IoT Sensors appeared first on ReadWrite.

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Ford’s new driver-assist system isn’t Autopilot, but it’s a step in the right direction

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Ford announced a raft of new driver-assistance features today, promising to make automatic emergency braking and other safety technology standard on many of its vehicles. The automaker stopped short of trying to look as if it would compete with semi-autonomous systems like Tesla’s Autopilot, but it’s a sign that improved safety technology will be coming to many more vehicles in the near future.

Ford has rolled out a number of new driver-assistance features piecemeal over the years, but now is repackaging five of them together under a new name: Ford Co-Pilot 360. The new system includes automatic emergency braking, blind spot monitors, backup cameras, lane keep assist, and auto high beams. A more premium version that includes adaptive…

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We’re One Step Closer to Super-Fast 5G Networks

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is ready to auction off access to the radio frequencies needed to operate the next generation of wireless networks, according to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai.

All wireless devices communicate over the air via radio frequency, also known as wireless spectrum. Spectrum is finite, and certain radio frequencies can be used only for certain purposes. No two companies can send their communications across the same frequency on the spectrum from the same location simultaneously, so they purchase licenses from the FCC to ensure dedicated access to their respective frequencies.

To operate 5G (fifth generation) wireless networks, which are expected to be 100 times faster than today’s 4G networks, companies will need access to very specific frequencies on the spectrum. During a speech at Barcelona’s Mobile World Congress, Pai announced plans to open up bidding on these highly desirable frequencies.

According to Pai, the FCC will start accepting bids in the 28 GHz band in November 2018, with an auction of spectrum in the 24 GHz band following shortly after. However, the FCC will only be able to follow that schedule if Congress changes current legislation on how the government handles bidders’ pre-auction payments by May 13, Pai said.

The Next Level

The most obvious benefits of 5G networks will be far faster speeds and shorter loading times on our personal devices.

A high-definition movie that currently takes an hour to download on a 4G network is expected to take just seconds with a 5G network. Also 5G networks are expected to be able to manage more data at once — so cell reception issues, say during a major sporting event, caused by too much user traffic may be rendered obsolete.

The benefits of 5G extend far beyond our smartphones and laptops, though. Hyper-fast networks could enable a doctor in one country to virtually control a surgical robot on the other, and it could increase the safety of autonomous vehicles by allow them to communicate with one another more quickly.

5G may arrive even sooner than expected, too. On February 25, 2018, Nokia’s Chief Executive Rajeev Suri told Reuters that his company is accelerating their 5G plans, with the first commercial roll-outs expected in 2018. Both AT&T and Verizon will begin offering customers 5G networks this year too.

If the FCC’s impending auction goes ahead as planned, 2019 may be the year the 5G revolution begins in earnest.

The post We’re One Step Closer to Super-Fast 5G Networks appeared first on Futurism.

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YouTube Music v2.21 prepares to add streaming audio quality settings for Wi-Fi and Cellular, possibly first step toward absorbing Play Music [APK Teardown]

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It’s no mystery that YouTube will be absorbing Google Play Music – that much we’ve known since July – but seven months later and we still don’t really know any details outside of some rumors about a rebranding to YouTube Remix. The latest update to the YouTube Music app might shed a little bit of light on what we can expect regarding the apps we’ll actually be using.

Teardown

Disclaimer: Teardowns are based on evidence found inside of apks (Android’s application package) and are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete information.

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YouTube Music v2.21 prepares to add streaming audio quality settings for Wi-Fi and Cellular, possibly first step toward absorbing Play Music [APK Teardown] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact hands-on: Sony takes a [small] step in the right direction

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Today at MWC 2018 in Barcelona Sony announced its latest flagship Android phones, the Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact. Looking at them without context, you’d be forgiven for thinking they were released a couple of years ago. Yet these are Sony’s most modern smartphone designs ever, with curved 3D glass and much smaller bezels than previous Xperia devices.

The larger XZ2 undeniably feels very nice in the hand. Its glass back makes the phone plenty grippy, and the aluminum sides are curved just enough to look good without causing it to slip out of your hand too easily.

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Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact hands-on: Sony takes a [small] step in the right direction was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Tor director Shari Steele will step down at the end of the year

Shari Steele is resigning her position as the director of the Tor Project, according to a report by Cyberscoop. Steele will remain director through December 31st, and the search for her replacement is still underway.

Responsible for the development and maintenance of the Tor anonymity network, the Tor Project has long been a central institution in the internet freedom community. For many, Steele’s directorship, which started in December 2015, signaled a sea change within the organization and shifted Tor towards being more inclusive and community focused. The following May, developer Jacob Appelbaum left the Tor Project amid widespread accusations of sexual assault, triggering a broader crisis within the organization. (Appelbaum denies…

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Review: Step Up Your Selfie Game with the ShutterGrip

If you want to take selfies, without looking like you used a selfie stick, you need a Bluetooth shutter remote control. But you also need a way to mount your phone on a tripod. That’s where the ShutterGrip ($ 39.95) from Just Mobile comes in. Fresh off a successful Kickstarter campaign, the ShutterGrip will be available soon, but I got a chance to use it now.

Related: How to Use Selfie Portrait Lighting & Portrait Mode on iPhone X

In fact, I used the ShutterGrip at a recent tradeshow and it worked well. I attached it to the end of a professional-quality monopod, thanks to the tripod mount, and was able to trigger video and photo recording with the removable Bluetooth trigger.

ShutterGrip

The ShutterGrip has a flexible clamp that expands for most phones. The remote claims a six-month battery life using the included CR2032 coin size battery. The ShutterGrip is sold in multiple color choices.

Pros

  • Tripod-mount
  • Flexible clamp expands for most phones
  • Removable Bluetooth shutter
  • Six-month battery life via CR2032
  • Multiple color choices

Cons

  • Selfie-stick or tripod not included
  • Plastic materials

Final Verdict

The ShutterGrip is a nice accessory that can improve your selfies.

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