We Need to Plant a Forest the Size of Brazil

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In order to meet the U.N.’s target when it comes to mitigating climate change, Shell boss Ben van Beurden say’s we would need to plant a forest the size of Brazil.

“You can get to 1.5C, but not by just by pulling the same levers a little bit harder, because they are being pulled roughly as fast and and as hard as we are currently imagining. What we think can be done is massive reforestation. Think of another Brazil in terms of rainforest: you can get to 1.5C,” he told an oil and gas industry audience in London.

These Special Sunglasses Block Screens

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There are a cool pair of sunglasses that can block screens. If you’re tired of the constant glare of shiny screens around you, get a pair of these.

Right now, their lenses can block light emitted from LCD and LED screens, but not OLED screens. That means they tune out most televisions and some computers, but not the newer crop of smartphones like the OLED-packing iPhones.

Details of Apple's New iPad Pros Leaked

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9to5Mac has posted leaked details of Apple’s new iPad Pros. “Today, sources familiar with the development of the new 2018 iPad Pro have offered additional details about the device, its features, and more.” That includes Face ID, thinner bezels, a USB-C port for external 4K/HDR displays and a new Apple Pencil. Are we excited? Oh, yes.

The A12 Chip Has Almost Caught up to Desktop Chips

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Redditor u/WinterCharm has made an informative post where he compares Apple’s A12 chip to desktop chips like the Xeon 8192, i7 6700k, and AMD EPYC 7601.

The main takeaway here is that Apple’s A12 is approaching or exceeding the performance of these competing chips in Spec2006, with lower clock speeds and less power consumption. The A12 BIG core running at 2.5GHz beats a Xeon 8176 core running at 3.8GHz, in 9 out of 12 of Spec_Int 2006 tests, often by a large margin (up to 44%). It falls behind in 3 tests, but the deficiency is 2%, 6%, and 12%. It also comes quite close to a desktop 6700k.

This Robot Can Do Construction Work

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HRP-5P robot from Japan’s Advanced Industrial Science and Technology institute

Tech Crunch writes: “The HRP-5P is a humanoid robot from Japan’s Advanced Industrial Science and Technology institute that can perform common construction tasks including  — install drywall.” I wonder if this opens up a new career field: Robotics repair and servicing. Or, will other robots do that as well? Check out the video.

Would a BDSM Robot Violate Asimov's Laws of Robotics?

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Would a BDSM robot violate Isaac Asimov’s first law of robotics? Gizmodo asked lawyers, ethicists, computer scientists, and philosophers.

Before you can get yourself sexually trussed, whipped or choked by a large piece of machinery, we as a culture will need to reckon with—among many, many other things—Isaac Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics. These laws state explicitly, right at the top, that “a robot may not injure a human being.”

It’s a hilarious and interesting view on sex robots and how a robot would perceive harm.

About Russia's Mobile Hackers: Hotel Wi-Fi Spying from a Rental Car

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TMO's Dramatic Reenactment of a Typical Russian Hacker

Wired has a detailed report about Russia’s mobile hackers, a team that traveled the world hacking and spying as part of Vladimir Putin’s state-sponsored payback. The mobile team often packed a rental car with various bits of equipment, operated around the world, and worked with a support team back in Russia. It’s a very interesting piece, and as John Kheit quipped, it demonstrates how one should “seriously never use public Wi-Fi.” Here’s a snippet:

The US Department of Justice charged seven hackers working for the Russian military agency GRU with carrying out a vast intrusion campaign against a wide range of organizations. The targets include anti-doping agencies in Colorado, Brazil, Canada, Monaco and Switzerland, part of a retaliatory leaking campaign after Russia was accused of doping ahead of the 2016 and 2018 Olympics; the Westinghouse Electric Company’s nuclear power operations, which supplies nuclear fuel to Ukraine; and the Spiez chemical testing laboratory in Switzerland and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in the Netherlands, likely due to their investigations into the Novichok gas attack on a Russian intelligence defector in the UK earlier this year.

iOS 12 Protects You Against Fake Keyboards

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Redditor u/p_giguere1 found out that iOS 12 can protect you against fake keyboards.

To trigger the warning: open a webpage in full-screen mode, for example a full-screen video on YouTube’s mobile website. Then tap several times at the bottom of the screen, as if you were typing on an invisible keyboard.

A warning message will appear telling you the website may be showing you a fake keyboard to trick you into disclosing personal or financial information.

I haven’t been able to trigger this, but the OP and a commenter shared screenshots that appear legitimate.

Clip Studio Paint Pro for Mac and Windows: $29.99

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Clip Studio Paint Pro

We have a deal on Clip Studio Paint Pro for Mac and Windows, the successor program to Manga Studio. It’s aimed at illustrators, comic artists, manga artists, and other creators. You can get it through us for $29.99, 50% off retail. You can see it in action in the video below.

Halide Explains Why iPhone XS Is a Whole New Camera

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Smart RAW examples from Halide

Apple is doing something entirely new with the camera in iPhone XS, and Sebastiaan de With, designer of the Halide app published a killer explanation of what those new things are. He also explains how they work and why those things are good—and where they are not good. He also explains the so-called smoothing effect that has been noted on selfies. The end of the piece is a pitch for Halide 1.0, Mr. de With’s camera app, that includes something he calls Smart RAW, but the technical analysis and explanation of what’s happening with the iPhone XS camera is a terrific read. It’s long, too, but well worth the read. Here’s a snippet:

An iPhone XS will over- and underexpose the shot, get fast shots to freeze motion and retain sharpness across the frame and grab every best part of all these frames to create one image. That’s what you get out of the iPhone XS camera, and that’s what makes it so powerful at taking photos in situations where you usually lose details because of mixed light or strong contrast.

Soon Instagram Could Share Your Location With Facebook

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Now that the Instagram founders are out of the way, Facebook is free to ruin the platform. Instagram was found prototyping a new feature that could share your location with Facebook.

That means your exact GPS coordinates collected by Instagram, even when you’re not using the app, would help Facebook to target you with ads and recommend you relevant content. Worryingly, the Location History sharing setting was defaulted to On in the prototype. The geo-tagged data would appear to users in their Facebook Profile’s Activity Log, which include creepy daily maps of the places you been.

If this happens I will seriously delete my Instagram account. F*ck Facebook, I’ll migrate fully to VSCO.

The Complete Arduino Starter Kit and Course Bundle

· · TMO Deals

The Complete Arduino Starter Kit & Course Bundle

We have a deal on the Complete Arduino Starter Kit and Course Bundle. As the name suggests, this bundle starts with the Complete Arduino Starter Kit, which includes the Uno R3 board, wires, LEDs, sensors, and more. It also includes six different Arduino training courses, with hundreds of lectures and 26.5 hours of video training. This bundle is $89.99 through us.

Check Out This 85,000 Piece Apple Park LEGO Set

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A master LEGO craftsman has completed a massive 85,000 piece Apple LEGO set. Shared on Flickr, Spencer_R said after seeing early drone footage of the Apple Park construction site, he felt he had found the right project to build what he calls a horizontal skyscraper.

In 2014 I came across some drone footage of an enormous circular excavation being dug into the California earth. When I discovered this was the start of the foundation for a new low-rise Apple “spaceship” campus, I knew I had found an interesting and suitable candidate.

The set has a scale of 1:650 and it took him over two years to build. The Apple LEGO set weighs 77.5 pounds and has an area of 19 square feet.

China Reportedly Snuck Spy Chips Onto Apple, Amazon Servers

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iMac with spy watching through screen

Bloomberg says spies in China managed to add a chip to servers Apple, Amazon, government agencies, and other companies were using. The chips were found on Supermicro server and were no bigger than a grain of rice. They let the People’s Liberation Army, and presumably other government agencies capture data and even remotely control compromised servers. From Bloomberg’s report:

The attack by Chinese spies reached almost 30 U.S. companies, including Amazon and Apple, by compromising America’s technology supply chain, according to extensive interviews with government and corporate sources.

Apple vehemently denies the report and calls out what it says are factual errors. The other companies deny the report, too. Apple stopped buying Supermicro servers in 2016 after discovering an unrelated security issue. Amazon bought Elemental Technologies, the company that wrote the software running on Supermicro servers, to run on its own custom designed hardware. Either China pulled off the most amazing hack ever: altering server hardware during manufacture for espionage, or Bloomberg and its sources got the story completely wrong.

A Terrific Review: Apple Watch Series 4

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Apple Watch Series 4

Jason Snell, at Six Colors, has written up a very nice review of the Apple Watch Series 4.  Notable is the assessment of which previous generation owners should upgrade to Series 4. And he doesn’t forget to note: “Apple also won’t let you buy a Stainless Steel model unless you buy the cellular edition. That double penalty means you can’t get a stainless Series 4 for less than $699.” Check it out.

Silicon Valley is Suddenly Pushing Privacy Laws. Don't Believe It.

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Neema Singh Guliani points out that just because Silicon Valley companies are suddenly pushing for privacy laws after all of these years, that doesn’t mean they have our best interests in mind.

After years of claiming they could self-regulate, the tech industry is suddenly receptive to the idea of federal privacy legislation. But don’t let this post-Cambridge Analytica “mea culpa” fool you into believing these companies have consumers’ best interests in mind. Far from it.

This seeming willingness to subject themselves to federal regulation is, in fact, an effort to enlist the Trump administration and Congress in companies’ efforts to weaken state-level consumer privacy protections.