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How to Help Victims of California Wildfires

Hundreds of thousands of Southern Californians are evacuating and at least 200 homes have been destroyed as a series of wildfires ravages the region. Here’s how to help the residents, first responders, and animals in need.

Hands On With the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845

Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 845 processor will make your photos brighter, your connections faster, and even stretch out the battery life in your wireless headphones. At Qualcomm's Snapdragon Summit, we heard all about the 845's new features and got hands-on time with a reference phone. Here are some of the coolest features in the Snapdragon 845.

3 Facebook Live can now broadcast Messenger games

Facebook is celebrating the first year of games on Messenger by introducing new titles and a few new features, starting with the ability to livestream them to friends. If you want to show your friends list how good you are with Everwing -- or how much you suck at it -- all you need to do is tap that new camera icon in the upper right corner of the game screen to stream on Facebook Live. You'll then be able to choose which audience you want to share it with before you post it like you would any other Live video. This particular feature is will be available starting today, but Facebook has another offering in store for 2018.

Goldman Sachs will clear bitcoin futures for some of its clients

Goldman is still exploring whether to play a role in other aspects of cryptocurrencies such as market making, the person said. Goldman will decide who gets to trade bitcoin futures on a case-by-case basis, the person said.

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Tesla is rising after Anheuser-Busch places an order for 40 electric semis (TSLA, BUD)

Shares are up 0.52% at $314.88 Thursday after Anheuser-Busch announced it had placed an order of 40 semi trucks. Anheuser-Busch did not say how much it paid to reserve the vehicles, but Tesla is currently offering reservations for $20,000 on its website, which suggests $800,000.

Florida man, 20, reportedly behind massive hack at Uber

Uber has said hackers accessed names and email addresses, as well as the drivers' license numbers of 600,000 Uber drivers, by stealing the password to a cloud database hosted by Amazon Web Services. Uber said it first became aware of the hack in November 2016. Since that time, CEO Travis Kalanick stepped down and was replaced by Dara Khosrowshahi in August .

The Best Password Managers of 2018

How many online accounts do you have? A dozen? A hundred? Do you remember a hundred different, strong passwords, or do you use the same simple password for all of them? Hackers routinely cross a list of weak passwords with a list of, say, PayPal accounts, trolling for matches. If they crack your account, you could lose big money. Worse, if you used that same password for other accounts, the hackers could take control of your email, social media, and financial accounts. Using a unique, strong password for every site is essential, and the only way to do it is to enlist the help of a password manager. We've evaluated dozens of password managers to help you choose the one that suits you best.

The iPhone is still the most popular camera on Flickr by far

They say the best camera is the one you have with you. So it’s no surprise that the smartphone is more popular among Flickr users than any other camera. Half of all images uploaded to the service this year were taken with a phone.

These 8 banking apps left millions of users vulnerable to getting hacked

Researchers have discovered a flaw in a commonly-used security mechanism that allows an attacker to steal login information. This left many popular banking apps vulnerable.

YouTube’s new music streaming service reportedly launching next March

YouTube’s new music streaming service is set to launch next March, tentatively with the name Remix, according to a Bloomberg report . The news confirms an earlier report from The Verge published back in July, in which YouTube’s music head Lyor Cohen revealed that the company had plans to combine its YouTube Red video subscription service with its existing Google Play Music offering. The new product will offer both music and video in an effort to simplify YouTube’s somewhat confusing series of streaming products that have been rebranded and relaunched over the years.

Pantone’s Color Of The Year Is Here, And It’s As Nebulous As 2018 Looks

Purple, of all the colors in the spectrum, embodies this situation best, as Pantone explains. “[Ultra Violet] is a very provocative shade, but it’s also a thoughtful color–it sounds like a bit of an oxymoron,” Eisenman says. “This is the kind of color attached, historically, to originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking. These are the elements we need to create a meaningful future. Inventiveness and imagination is something we seek in our personal lives and business worlds. People are looking for that ‘magic bullet,’ and this shade is the perfect shade to lead right into it . . . It’s intriguing, fascinating, and magical.”

DOJ trial against AT&T, Time Warner merger starts March 19 | ZDNet

AT&T will have to wait until March to find out if it can purchase Time Warner for $85 billion.

JK Rowling defends Johnny Depp’s casting in Fantastic Beasts

Yates’ statements haven’t been received well . He’s been accused of a “truly gross” dismissal of Heard, and of suggesting that talent excuses physical abuse. Rowling’s follow-up comments feel like damage control after the negative response to Yates’ comments, but she also mostly sidesteps the issues. According to Rowling, the production team was concerned when stories first broke regarding Depp, and did consider recasting. But Rowling implies that fans may not have the full story, and due to circumstances of “agreements that have been put in place to protect the privacy of two people” — presumably Depp and Heard — “both of whom have expressed a desire to get on with their lives,” she can’t openly address the concerns. However, she adds that “based on our understanding of the circumstances, the filmmakers and I are not only comfortable sticking with our original casting, but genuinely happy to have Johnny playing a major character in the movies.”

Taking a second look at the learn-to-code craze

One of the earliest corporate efforts to get computers into schools was Apple’s “Kids Can’t Wait” program in 1982. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs personally lobbied Congress to pass the Computer Equipment Contribution Act , which would have allowed companies that donated computers to schools, libraries and museums to deduct the equipment’s value from their corporate income tax bills. While his efforts in Washington failed, he succeeded in his home state of California, where companies could claim a tax credit for 25 percent of the value of computer donations.

Raspberry Pi clone Libre Renegade: $35 gets you Android, USB 3.0 and 4K video | ZDNet

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iPhone and Android wireless charger pads: Which one is the best? | ZDNet

The RAVPower has the best illuminated charging indicator, a green LED (to indicate power and 5W charge) and red/orange LED which pulses when in use and to indicate 7.5W fast charge. The Belkin has a green LED which turns on and stays solid green when charging. The Mophie has a dim white light on the bottom edge (which is virtually impossible to see). For bedroom/night use I have to give it to the Mophie, which also has the lowest profile of the three.

Instagram tests standalone messaging app called Direct

"We want Instagram to be a place for all of your moments, and private sharing with close friends is a big part of that," said a company spokeswoman. "To make it easier and more fun for people to connect in this way, we are beginning to test Direct - a camera-first app that connects seamlessly back to Instagram."

Privacy — Seamless & Secure Online Card Payments

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Apple claims it can collect your data without violating your privacy; here's how

To gain the information without revealing who users are, Apple developed a system architecture that uses local differential privacy, released with iOS10. "It is rooted in the idea that carefully calibrated noise can mask a user's data," according to the post. "When many people submit data, the noise that has been added averages out and meaningful information emerges."

Mashable on Twitter

The 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' trailer is here, and it's everything you've been waiting for

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These were the most downloaded Apple apps of 2017

25 What makes something go viral?

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Review | Amazon wants a key to your house. I did it. I regretted it.

When you use Amazon Key, you get a phone alert with a window when a delivery might occur. If no one is home, the delivery person taps an app that grants one-time access to unlock your door, places the package inside, then relocks the door. (They don’t recommend Key if you have pet, and won’t come in if they hear barking.) The moment the door unlocks, the Cloud Cam starts recording — and sends you a live stream of the whole thing. It’s a surreal 15 seconds.

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Bill Gross says bitcoin limits make it an unlikely currency alternative

The GOP tax bill could add billions to Amazon, Facebook and Google’s bottom lines

But the good news for the mega-cap tech triumvirate doesn't end there. Cowen sees Google, Facebook and Amazon also benefiting from the proposed capital expenditure expensing provision in the GOP tax bill. The firm estimates that the companies will spend a combined $234 billion on capex from 2018 to 2022, noting that Facebook has said it plans to double reinvestment in 2018.

By the Time You Read This, Bitcoin Will Have a Wildly Different Price

We’re hitting a sort of news singularity with Bitcoin at this point. The rush to report price changes can’t keep pace with the reality. In 24 short hours, its trading price has gone from around $12,000 to $16,000. Now the biggest question is: How long is it going to be before these investors are putting us all at risk?

Why multi-cloud is a lie, and here's the truth

Multi-cloud, in short, is always with us, but not in the sense the analysts once wanted us to believe. Companies aren't investing heavily in multiple clouds to lower their risk profiles. Instead, they're tending to congregate around a market leader—primarily AWS—and filling in other needs willy-nilly based on individual developer or team preferences and/or cloud-specific technologies. This isn't likely to disturb Jassy's sleep, but it will make life harder for the CIO.

What I Learned By Letting My Mood Dictate How I Worked For A Month

For a long time, I’ve been using Cal Newport’s “deep work” method  to write productively. I block out a period of time to work on my writing with no distractions, and it it usually works like a charm–for Part 2 of my job, anyhow. But I’ve increasingly found it isn’t ideal for Part 1, the idea-generation step in the writing process. I can’t just schedule a block of time to “be creative” every day without fail. Some days, creativity comes easily to me, and some days it doesn’t; I’m either in a creative mood or I’m not.

Jordan Peele to executive produce CBS 'The Twilight Zone' reboot

The show will be produced by CBS Television Studios, with Simon Kinberg, Marco Ramirez, Win Rosenfeld and Audrey Chon also executive producing. Peele, Kinberg and Ramirez will collaborage on the premiere episode. "Too many times this year it's felt we were living in a twilight zone, and I can't think of a better moment to reintroduce it to modern audiences," Peele said in a statement.

Is the Wacom Cintiq Pro the right tool for creative artists?

You can get the Cintiq Pro 13 for $999 and the Cintiq Pro 16 for $1,499. I think this is an impressive piece of hardware, but it's rather pricey. I enjoyed using it with portraits, but I don't know if I enjoyed it enough for $999 or $1,499. If all I did was portrait photography, I would invest in this device because it would offer a great ROI due to how much faster I could process portrait photographs. As any creative artist knows, the more efficient your workflow is, the more jobs you can get done. Without any doubt I can still recommend the Wacom Intuos as it has a much lower price point (under $100 ). No, it doesn't offer a display screen, but it still has great performance with its stylus.

How killing net neutrality will hurt online protests and free speech

Net neutrality levels the playing field so that anyone with any idea or story, regardless of how much money they have, will be able to share it, just by having access to the internet. The possibility of platforms or organizations being charged more for content delivery through "fast lanes" or "prioritization" undermines this. It's a form of democracy, not unlike the right to vote or speak up at a town hall, that should be protected, not attacked.

The Worst-Dressed Villains in Doctor Who History

Okay, so the crew of the robot-operated Kaldoran sandminer were all a little extreme with the hair and makeup. But would-be robo-revolutionary Taren Capel gets bonus points for not only looking completely and utterly ridiculous, but for being so pro-robot that he actually made himself look as close as possible to the art deco design work of the Voc robots he loved so dearly. After all, he was meant to have been raised by them, so it kind of makes sense. Doesn’t stop it from looking silly as hell, though.

What to Know About Insurance Coverage If Your Home Is Destroyed by a Wildfire

Hundreds of thousands of people could face property damage in Southern California thanks to a series of wildfires in the region. If you’re one of them, here are some initial steps to take to start rebuilding.

Chrome 63 vs Windows 10 Edge: Google steps up rivalry with site isolation security | ZDNet

Google's latest effort to pry businesses odd Internet Explorer and keep them away from Windows 10 Edge is a new security feature called site isolation, which handles each page in its own process.

Apple Patched a HomeKit Vulnerability That Allowed Unauthorized Access to Devices

Apple has had a rough go of it recently when it comes to software vulnerabilities. This latest one, which could effectively allow unauthorized access to your home through a smart, HomeKit-enabled door lock, is certainly big enough to warrant attention. And before this, a root access vulnerability in macOS made it so that physical access to a Mac could let someone log into, and make changes at the root level, without actually needing a password.

Apple says AR on iPhone was a 'breakout trend' of 2017

App Store editors determined four breakout trends of the year to feature as part of the App Store's larger Best of 2017 celebration that looks at apps, music, and movies. AR, dubbed "a less virtual reality" in the post, was first on the list.

Sophie Turner defends Taylor Swift's 'Time' cover and is here to support all 'The Silence Breakers'

Sophie Turner defends Taylor Swift's 'Time' cover and is here to support all 'The Silence Breakers'

Don't Complain About Annoyances, Avoid Them

Complaints about little things aren’t worth your time. Stop crying about what’s annoying you and do one of two things: avoid it, or fix it (if possible). Office too loud? Buy some noise-cancelling headphones. Hate how far your couch is from your TV? Move it closer. Feeling cold? Put on some more layers. Don’t chew on the metaphorical “bitter cucumber” and drone on about how much you dislike it (especially online). Some things are, and will always be, a nuisance to you. Do yourself, and everyone else, a favor and just find a way to avoid it. Why spend your life walking through thorns?

Why I wish 'Last Jedi' was Rian Johnson's last Star Wars movie

OK, I don't really want Rian Johnson to stop making Star Wars movies. "The Last Jedi" will give us a firmer sign if he's the right man for the job, but Kathleen Kennedy, Lucasfilm and Disney are apparently confident. So yeah, a Star Wars franchise shepherded by Johnson and his collaborators will probably be pretty great. You can't beat an ambitious blockbuster made with love and imagination by filmmakers whose work comes together, from concept artists to visual effects wizards , to conjure a thing of beauty.

Franken's resignation shines a bright light on GOP hypocrisy

During his speech Thursday, Franken made mention of both Moore and Trump, saying, "I, of all people, am aware that there is some irony in the fact that I am leaving while a man who has bragged on tape about his history of sexual assault sits in the Oval Office and a man who has repeatedly preyed on young girls campaigns for the senate with the full support of his party."

Amazon Prime Video comes to Apple TV

Amazon Prime Video support was promised at Apple's WWDC conference in June. Its addition makes Apple TV, along with Roku, one of the most flexible streaming devices, especially now that Google has announced its plans to pull YouTube support from Amazon's Fire TV platform. Google's own Chromecast does not support Amazon Video.

Google ups Chrome security for business users with new features and policies

In its post, Google also outlined some of the security features that will be coming in 2018. In Chrome 64, due in 2018, the browser will support the NTLMv2 authentication protocol, the post said. This includes Extended Protection for Authentication (EPA) on Mac, Android, Linux, and Chrome OS. "This allows all platforms to perform NTLM authentication with the same level of security that was previously available only in Chrome on Windows," the post said.

Apple just named its favorite apps and games of the year

The company on Thursday released its year-end list of top US apps for iPhones and iPads. In addition to publishing the list of the most-downloaded apps and games, Apple also chose an app of the year and a game of the year for both the iPhone and the iPad.

Hackers pull of mega-heist, swipe nearly $70 million worth of bitcoin

One thing to note: as the value of a bitcoin continues to go up, so, too does the value of the heist. As of post time, the value of a single bitcoin has surpassed $15,000 (with prices on some local Korean exchanges already topping $19,000), meaning the value of the heist has, for the time being, surpassed $70 million.

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Bitcoin frenzy made this Australian a billionaire for less than an hour

Bitmoji and Drake top Apple's best of 2017 list

Bitmoji is closely followed by Snapchat, YouTube, Messenger, Instagram and Facebook. In games, Super Mario Run proved to be the most popular game of the year, with 8 Ball Pool and Snake Vs Block following just after. Candy Crush Saga just managed to sneak in at the end of the list.


51 The most damaging hacks and data breaches of 2017, so far
52 LA police urging wildfire evacuees to avoid navigation apps?
53 A 3D-printed death chamber will take you out of this cold, dark world
54 How to track Microsoft Office user changes in Google docs
55 Vampire Veronica Descends on Riverdale in a New Archie Horror Series
56 The Slack for gamers is blowing up
57 T-Mobile calls Verizon's 5G broadband plan 'unrealistic'
58 Beyerdynamic MMX 300 (2nd Generation)
59 USA TODAY Tech on Twitter
60 A Check-Up for Artificial Intelligence in the Enterprise - InformationWeek
61 Windows 10: Here are the big new features to look out for in 2018
62 Netflix has optioned John Scalzi’s Old Man’s War
63 The top 10 fastest-growing jobs in the US
64 Applied Neural Networks
65 Everything you buy in this pop-up store will be given to refugees
66 CNET News on Twitter
67 Lifehacker on Twitter
68 Here are all the Japanese cars made in the USA
69 Patreon users are worried about the site’s new payment structure
70 Inside the Opposition to a Net Neutrality Repeal
72 Bitcoin exchange NiceHash loses millions to hackers
73 Best RPG - Best of 2017 Awards - IGN
74 Take my money: Why you’re paying for free media willingly
77 Drake, Moana Top Apple Charts in 2017
78 Twitter’s top tweets in 2017 have a tragic tone
79 Sony has sold more than 70 million PlayStation 4 consoles
80 Walmart now sells meal kits, just like Amazon and Blue Apron
81 2017_12_xx_NIPS-keynote-final.pdf
82 This ad-blocking browser has some cryptocurrency for you
83 Hilton rolling out mobile-controlled hotel rooms in 2018 | ZDNet
84 One of the Best Teen Titans Comics Ever Works Because It’s Barely a Superhero Story
85 Sen. Al Franken, a vocal proponent of net neutrality, resigns
86 Hilton plans to offer a smart hotel room system next year
87 Quentin Tarantino’s Star Trek Is Really Happening, and Will Be Rated R
88 This New Tiny Electric Car Comes With Five Years Of Free Solar Charging
89 MIT Tech Review on Twitter
90 NYTimes Tech on Twitter
91 Alex K. on Twitter
92 Gizmodo on Twitter
93 How the net neutrality repeal helps ISPs keep their hidden fees hidden
94 How to exit a conversation without being a jerk
95 The TheTechNewsBlog Daily
96 MIT Tech Review on Twitter
97 MIT Tech Review on Twitter