Author Archives: Kavita Iyer

Google Search is testing ‘Learn To Pronounce’ feature in different speeds and accents

Google Search’s new feature will teach you how to pronounce words in different accents

Over a period of time, Google Search has become a lifeline for many of us and the go-to-place to find answers for any kind of queries ranging from food, health, entertainment, weather, and much more. Not only this, it also serves as a platform for us to learn new things.

Google is always looking to better its services and make it more user-friendly. And one such service is its ‘Search’ feature. Apparently, Google is testing a new feature that will help users learn how to pronounce words in different accents and speeds, reports Android Police.

Google Search is testing Learn To Pronounce feature
Image: Android Police

The new “Learn to Pronounce” feature will help users to correctly pronounce a word, which will be played in both American and British accents. Also, it allows managing the speed of pronunciation for a word for those users who have trouble in understanding the accent.

For the unaware, when a user searches for the definition of a particular word in Google Search, it displays the meaning of the word in question along with a small speaker icon next to the said word to hear how it is pronounced.

The introduction of the new feature will pop up the ‘Learn To Pronounce’ box below the word, which when tapped will open up a new search card. For instance, if you search for “onomatopoeia,” a box will reportedly appear that directs to a new search for “how to pronounce” that will have the written pronunciation of the word along with a small speaker icon placed next to it.

It will then give a drop-down option, which will have the British or American pronunciation of the given word that the user needs to choose from. Additionally, there is also an option to slow down the speed of the audio pronunciation in case it is not understandable.

Google has yet to officially confirm the release or testing of the new feature. However, the feature is already displaying for some users, according to Android Police. This could mean that Google may slowly roll out the feature to users in coming weeks. Keep watching this for more updates!

Source: Android Police

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Sony PlayStation Classic hacked to run games off a USB drive

Hackers crack Sony’s PlayStation Classic shortly after the release

Last week, Sony released PlayStation Classic with 20 officially preinstalled games, which includes games such as Metal Gear Solid, Final Fantasy VII, Grand Theft Auto, and Resident Evil Director’s Cut. The list of games left out many countless classic games from the 90s leaving fans disappointed. Moreover, the gaming console does not have any built-in machine to add more unofficial games.

However, this did not stop the members of the console hacking community to find a way out to unofficially add games to the mini-console. Just one week after its launch, hackers have apparently found a method to run games and software on the PlayStation Classic via a USB flash drive, reports Ars Technica.

Popular console hackers, yifanlu and madmonkey1907 have managed to successfully sideload the PlayStation Classic’s code via the system’s UART serial port. Thanks to the weak cryptography in the PlayStation Classic, which was discovered by these console hackers while dumping the PlayStation Classic system code onto an external machine.

According to the hackers, the most sensitive parts of the PlayStation Classic’s codes were signed and encrypted using a key that had been mistakenly left behind on the console instead of being held by Sony.

YifanLu took to Twitter and documented the process in real-time of hacking the PlayStation Classic’s security. He was able to successfully run Crash Bandicoot on the console via a USB thumb drive (see video below).

YifanLu stated, “One key is, ‘Hey am I Sony?’…The other key is saying, ‘Hey I am Sony.’ They distributed the key that identifies [themselves] uniquely and this key doesn’t expire for another 50 years or so.”

Basically, consoles have encrypted codes that run in the system to prevent people from making any changes. However, on the PlayStation Classic, the necessary tool to decrypt the system’s codes is already available in the console’s system and all a user has to do is copy it to their PC.

In order to hack the mini-console, yifanlu and madmonkey1907 used an open-source tool called BleemSync, which is available on GitHub for PlayStation Classic owners who want to carry the procedure at home. Apparently, the PlayStation Classic doesn’t check the software it is running, which makes the cracking process easy. However, it is important to note that since the console is still in its early days, running other games can result in your PlayStation Classic being bricked, if done wrong.

The easy hacking process of the console is certainly not good news for Sony. And, the company would be looking to rectify the error by locking down the console via future hardware revisions.

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Google decides to kill off Google+ earlier than planned

Another data leak forces Google to close down Google+ in April 2019

In October this year, we had reported how personal data of hundreds of thousands of Google+ social media users were exposed after a software glitch between 2015 and March 2018. Following the data exposure, Google had decided to shut down Google+ permanently over a span of 10 months.

However, a newly discovered second data leak has now forced Google to shut down much before it has planned. According to the company, a bug in the Google+ API has exposed the data of 52.5 million users, which has compelled the search giant to kill off Google+ in April 2019. The company also added that the bug was fixed within a week of it being introduced.

“We’ve recently determined that some users were impacted by a software update introduced in November that contained a bug affecting a Google+ API. We discovered this bug as part of our standard and ongoing testing procedures and fixed it within a week of it being introduced. No third party compromised our systems, and we have no evidence that the app developers that inadvertently had this access for six days were aware of it or misused it in any way,” David Thacker, VP, Product Management, G Suite said in a blog post.

“With the discovery of this new bug, we have decided to expedite the shut-down of all Google+ APIs; this will occur within the next 90 days. In addition, we have also decided to accelerate the sunsetting of consumer Google+ from August 2019 to April 2019. While we recognize there are implications for developers, we want to ensure the protection of our users.”

Profile information of Google+ users such as name, email address, occupation, and age were exposed even when their profile was set to not-public. In addition, apps with access to a user’s Google+ profile data also had access to the profile data that had been shared with the consenting user by another Google+ user but that was not shared publicly. However, no access was given to information such as financial data, national identification numbers, passwords, or similar data typically used for fraud or identity theft.

The company has started notifying consumer users and enterprise customers affected by the bug. Although the platform will shut down for consumer users in April 2019, Google will continue to invest in Google+ for businesses.

“We understand that our ability to build reliable products that protect your data drives user trust. We have always taken this seriously, and we continue to invest in our privacy programs to refine internal privacy review processes, create powerful data controls, and engage with users, researchers, and policymakers to get their feedback and improve our programs. We will never stop our work to build privacy protections that work for everyone,” said David Thacker in the closing statement.

For those who are unaware, Google+ is an Internet-based social network that was launched in June 2011 and is owned and operated by Google. The major reason why Google developed this social media platform was to compete with the exponentially growing social-media platform Facebook.

To increase the active user base Google interlinked Google+ with other services like Gmail and YouTube; however, the integration didn’t work out. In fact, even after massive investments and development Google+ didn’t gain immense popularity among users.

What do you think about Google+ being shut down? Do let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Google Chrome’s Dark Mode For macOS To Arrive In Early 2019

Chrome’s Dark Mode in macOS Mojave to come by early 2019

In early September this year, it was rumored that Google would be launching the latest version of Chrome with support for Dark Mode on macOS Mojave in December. But Chrome users were left disappointed, as Chrome 71 that was released last week did not include support for Dark Mode.

For the unaware, Dark Mode instantly changes all the compatible apps to a dark color palette when enabled in System Preferences. In other words, dark colors are used in place of light colors in the user interface, for instance, such as the menus, tabs, bookmark bar, Omnibox, status bar, and dialog boxes.

However, a recently submitted code change by a Google developer on a post on Reddit (via MacRumors) suggests that support for macOS dark mode will be arriving in a future release of Chrome. The new code change submitted in Chromium hints at system-level Dark Mode.

According to MacRumors, changes made in Chromium usually roll out every six weeks or so, which means that Dark Mode for macOS is unlikely to make it for Chrome 72 release due in mid-to-late January. This implies that Dark Mode may likely come with Chrome 73 sometime in March 2019.

While Dark Mode has yet to be supported on Google’s Chrome, the search giant’s other service, YouTube is already supporting Dark Mode.

The post Google Chrome’s Dark Mode For macOS To Arrive In Early 2019 appeared first on TechWorm.

Best 29 Tech Companies To Work For In The U.S. In 2019

Top 29 U.S. tech companies to work for in 2019, according to Glassdoor

Glassdoor, the renowned career job site, has released its annual report of 100 best places to work in the U.S. in 2019 under the name “Employees’ Choice Awards.” The compiled list of 100 companies to work for, includes 29 companies that belong to the technology sector.

Organizations were ranked based on employee ratings across several factors, such as overall satisfaction, career opportunities, corporate culture, transparency, compensation and benefits, work-life balance, culture, values, and business outlook.

Based on employees’ reviews, companies received overall ratings on a scale of one to five, with five signifying the most satisfied employees.

It has been a rather tough year for tech big-wigs like Facebook, Google, Tesla, and Salesforce, who were marred with scandals and controversies. As a result, it has hampered their overall ranking, which saw Facebook fall from the first position last year to the seventh overall rank. Also, the search giant, Google dropped down from second overall position to eight overall ranking

While you can check the entire list of Glassdoor here, let’s have a look at the top 29 tech companies to work for in 2019:


Zoom Video Communications

Overall ranking: #2

Company rating: 4.5

AboutZoom Video Communications provides remote conferencing services using cloud computing.

An employee says“Honesty, this is the best company I have ever worked for, hands down. Our CEO practices what he preaches with Delivering Happiness. Management is great, no micromanaging, and always willing to help. The sales floor is competitive, but not toxic at all. Everyone is more than happy to help each other. We realize we are all a part of something special right now, and that this should be a team effort.”— Zoom Account Executive (Santa Barbara, California).


Procore Technologies

Overall ranking: #4

Company rating: 4.5

AboutProcore Technologies is a construction project management software company.

An employee says: “From the day I started working at Procore, I’ve felt welcome, engaged, and energized. The work is challenging and fast-paced, but the people and culture make coming to the office something I look forward to every day. Procore truly lives its values of Ownership, Optimism, and Openness.” — Anonymous Procore Employee (Carpinteria, California).


LinkedIn

Overall ranking: #6

Company rating: 4.5

AboutLinkedIn Corporation is a social networking website specifically designed for people in professional jobs and for recruiting professionals.

An employee says: “Linkedin has a very strong emphasis on employee wellness and goes the extra mile to care how employees feel and does everything to make them more productive in their daily work. Linkedin offers best quality food, continuous wellness programs, clear paths to advance careers and everything else necessary for happiness.” — Anonymous LinkedIn Employee (Mountain View, California).


Facebook

Overall ranking: #7

Company rating: 4.5

AboutFacebook is the world’s biggest online social networking service and website.

What employees say: “Learning from great software engineers and/or researchers in AI. Too many political debates inside the company.” — Facebook Research Scientist (New York, New York).


Google

Overall ranking#8

Company rating4.4

AboutGoogle Inc. is an American multinational corporation that is best known for running one of the largest search engines on the World Wide Web (WWW) and also creates cloud computing, hardware, and software products, and more.

An employee says“If you’re a software engineer, you’re among the kings of the hill at Google. It’s an engineer-driven company without a doubt (that *is* changing, but it’s still very engineer-focused).” — Google Software Engineer (New York, New York).


Salesforce

Overall ranking#11

Company rating4.4

AboutSalesforce is an American cloud computing company that helps companies manage their sales, marketing, and application programming projects.

An employee says“Supportive and inclusive environment, clear and reasonable expectations, challenging environment, awesome corporate mission, lots of room and support for professional growth.” — Salesforce Solutions Engineer (Cincinnati, Ohio).


HubSpot

Overall ranking#16

Company rating4.4

About: HubSpot is a developer and marketer of software products for inbound marketing and sales.

An employee says: “I’ve been at HubSpot now for almost 4 years and there’s nowhere else I’ve even thought about working in that time. Why? HubSpot is a great place to work. I feel like I’m valued. I have a lot of autonomy in how and when and where I work. I feel strongly about the mission of the company.” — Anonymous HubSpot Employee (Cambridge, Massachusetts).


DocuSign

Overall ranking#17

Company rating4.4

About: DocuSign provides electronic signature technology and digital transaction management services for facilitating electronic exchanges of contracts and signed documents.

An employee says: “We’re on a good path with no signs of slowing down and a lot of untapped market potential. This is great news. Because the company is growing fast, there’s a lot of opportunity to grow your career and step up into new roles.” — DocuSign Enterprise Corporate Sales(San Francisco, California).


Ultimate Software

Overall ranking#18

Company rating4.4

AboutUltimate Software is an American technology company that develops and sells UltiPro, a cloud-based human capital management (HCM) solution for businesses.

An employee says: “Amazing company. It’s the only payroll / HCM organization that truly cares about the customer – and while it’s not easy – the organization has maintained an amazing culture all in an effort to provide the best support to the customer. I love that.” — Ultimate SDM


Paylocity

Overall ranking#20

Company rating4.4

AboutPaylocity is a provider of cloud-based payroll and human capital management software solutions for medium-sized organizations.

An employee says“Great company culture. People that really believe in what we do, and investment in technology to push the envelope.” — Paylocity Account Executive (Tampa, Florida).


Fast Enterprises

Overall ranking#26

Company rating4.4

AboutFast Enterprises provides software and information technology consulting services.

An employee says: “Fast, even at the 1000+ size it is, still cares deeply about each and every employee. Their benefits, even the way they help people move, the way they bring individuals AND their spouses/families into the culture, it super impressive and I love that about Fast.” — Fast Enterprises Implementation Consultant (Boston, Massachusetts).


SAP

Overall ranking#27

Company rating4.4

About: SAP is a multinational software corporation that develops enterprise software to help manage business operations and customer relations.

An employee says: “We have yoga and meditation classes, mindfulness workshops. Many invited guests from technology industries to provides you with information. Leadership women workshops, global coaching, mentoring programs, and flexible work environment.? It is truly a top-notch company that will give back to their employees.”— SAP Manager (Montreal, Québec).


Adobe

Overall ranking#30

Company rating4.4

AboutAdobe Inc. is an American multinational computer software company best known for its design and photo-editing solutions.

An employee says: “Relentless commitment to customer success. This is the core of most day to day decisions and the North Star for all activity. This makes it a place to be proud to work. Incredible products. Amazing benefits and culture that draws incredibly talented individuals.” — Adobe Learning Specialist (San Jose, California).


Compass

Overall ranking#32

Company rating4.4

AboutReal estate agency and platform for buying, selling, and renting a home.

An employee says: “Having recently joined Compass, all I can say about the company, its mission, and the people in it is… ‘simply amazing.’ Compass is a unicorn. It is that rare company that combines passion, focus, execution, vision, and has a heart and a soul.” — Anonymous Compass Employee (San Francisco, California).


Microsoft

Overall ranking#34

Company rating4.4

AboutMicrosoft Corporation (MS) is an American multinational technology company that develops, manufactures, licenses, supports and sells computer software, consumer electronics, personal computers, and related services.

An employee says“Respect for the individual, constant stressing of core cultural values of letting everyone be heard, etc. Decent work/life balance, though it’s hugely dependent on the individual to enforce. Individuals are encouraged to engage with managers at any level (for example with your manager’s manager’s manager…). There’s a general high-level of passion for the products we make.” — Senior Microsoft Electrical Engineer (Redmond, Washington).


NVIDIA

Overall ranking#36

Company rating4.3

About: Nvidia Corporation designs graphics processing units (GPUs) for the gaming, cryptocurrency, and professional markets, as well as system on a chip units (SoCs) for the mobile computing and automotive market.

An employee says“I’ll be up front and say that it has always been my dream to work here. With that in mind, I came in telling myself to look at this place as objectively as possible to not cloud my judgement. After working here for over a year, I must say, the hype is real.” — Senior Nvidia Systems Engineer (Santa Clara, California).


Intuit

Overall ranking#38

Company rating4.3

AboutIntuit Inc. is a business and financial software company that develops and sells financial, accounting, and tax preparation software and related services for small businesses, accountants, and individuals.

An employee says“Incredible company that has market dominance, yet also has so much room to grow. Management constantly preaches disruption, and its reflected in our priorities and work.” — Intuit Data Scientist.


TaskUs

Overall ranking#40

Company rating4.3

AboutTaskUs is a global outsourcing company that provides back-office support and customer care solutions.

An employee says“Taskus puts their people first, they understand that their people are the ones who make their company! I have gone through many interviews with other companies and Taskus is the first one who truly shows it!” — TaskUs Digital Content Moderator (San Antonio, Texas).


Cengage

Overall ranking#41

Company rating4.3

AboutCengage is an educational content, technology, and services company for the higher education, K-12, professional, and library markets worldwide.

An employee says“The leadership of the company has been jaw-droppingly motivated, visionary, and transparent. They have turned a company haunted by downturns in the market into a trendsetter that is adapting profitably. Along the way, they have been committed to employee growth and job satisfaction. I am thrilled with what we are doing for learning.” — Senior Systems Analyst (Rapid City, South Dakota).


Kronos Incorporated

Overall ranking#44

Company rating4.3

About: HR, payroll, recruiting, and timekeeping software.

An employee says“The culture is positive. Employees are hard working and care. Leadership cares for employees and their experience. The company also cares for their customers.” — Anonymous Kronos Employee (Denver, Colorado).


VMware

Overall ranking#51

Company rating4.3

AboutVMware, Inc. is a subsidiary of Dell Technologies that provides cloud computing and platform virtualization software and services.

An employee says“Lots of smart and talented coworkers who are happy to share information you will learn a lot in a short amount of time but are expected to contribute. Slackers need not apply. If you’re a slacker you won’t survive the high stress and fast pace.” — VMware Technical Support (Broomfield, Colorado).


AppDynamics

Overall ranking#58

Company rating4.3

AboutAppDynamics is an application performance management (APM) and IT operations analytics (ITOA) company that focuses on managing the performance and availability of applications across cloud computing environments as well as inside the data center.

An employee says“Great encouraging and supportive leadership. Promotional opportunities every quarter. Family atmosphere, where everyone has a genuine interest in you as an individual and employee.” — AppDynamics Business Development Representative (Dallas, Texas).


Paycom

Overall ranking#62

Company rating4.3

About: Paycom is an online payroll and human resource technology provider.

An employee says“This is honestly the best job I think I’ll ever have. The benefits are amazing and the pay is more than I ever thought I could get. BE WARNED this job is hard. Never in my life have I had so much stress. That’s the reason why it pays so well. Be prepared to be stressed every day and have heavy daily workloads and have new procedures constantly thrown at you from management. But guess what it’s your job so you either adapt or you don’t make it.” — Paycom Specialist (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma).


Cisco Systems

Overall ranking#69

Company rating4.3

AboutCisco Systems, Inc. is an American multinational technology that develops, manufactures and sells networking hardware, telecommunications equipment, and other high-technology services and products.

An employee says“Military Friendly Culture empowers and gives transitioning veterans the opportunity to learn develop self to full potential. As a Military Retiree I feel there could not have been a better company to transition to than Cisco and the leadership team is very understanding and appreciative of what we bring to the table.” — Cisco Program Manager (Austin, Texas).


Apple

Overall ranking#71

Company rating4.3

AboutApple Inc. is an American multinational technology company that designs, develops, and sells consumer electronics, computer software, and online services.

An employee says“The company is AMAZING. There are limitless advancement opportunities. You work with some very cool people and the leadership cares about your development. You may get coaching but you never get battered or belittled.” — Apple At Home Advisor (Lakewood, Colorado).


NetApp

Overall ranking#82

Company rating4.2

AboutNetApp, Inc. is a hybrid cloud data services and data management company that offers hybrid cloud data services for management of applications and data across cloud and on-premises environments.

An employee says“Great team chemistry. Interesting work. This company cares about its employees a lot and there are numerous events at work and outside work which show this.” — NetApp HPC Solutions Architect (Sunnyvale, California).


HP Inc.

Overall ranking#87

Company rating4.2

AboutHP Inc. is a provider of a wide variety of hardware components as well as software components.

An employee says“HP’s global footprint makes it unique in allowing you to have a BIG impact. Senior leaders are quality execs who’ve proven their mettle. Lots of opportunity to contribute given the size of the businesses.” — Anonymous HP Employee.


Expedia Group

Overall ranking#92

Company rating4.2

AboutExpedia Group is an American global travel technology company.

An employee says: “Expedia is the best place to work. I have been here for 11 months and enjoying every single day. The culture is upbeat, leadership is transparent, clear on direction, very well organized process oriented company. Awesome work life balance.” — Expedia Software Engineering Manager (Chicago, Illinois).


World Wide Technology

Overall ranking#99

Company rating4.2

AboutWorld Wide Technology, Inc. (WWT) provides technology and supply chain services with a focus on the enterprise commercial, public and telecom service provider sectors. The company provides planning, procurement and deployment of IT products and solution selling.

An employee says“Bar none, THE BEST place I have ever worked.” — World Wide Technology Senior Consultant (Denver, Colorado).

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Torrent Tracker ‘Leechers Paradise’ Calls It Quit After 12 Years

Leechers Paradise shuts down after 12 years of torrent tracking

Leechers Paradise, one of the world’s oldest and most vital open BitTorrent trackers, has shut down for good over upcoming ‘Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market’ proposed by European Union (EU), reports TorrentFreak.

For those unaware, Leechers Paradise is an open torrent sharing service that does not host any ads or torrent files. Basically, torrent tracking co-ordinates the torrent sharing process. It helps in peers finding each other. When the peer sends a message to the tracker to register its interest in a torrent, the tracker responds with a list of other peers who have expressed interest in the past. Then, the peer connects directly to each of the peers it received from the tracker.

Bidding goodbye on its website, Leechers Paradise operator ‘Eddie’ wrote, “Sadly after 12 years, I am calling it quits. Article 13 of the new EU copyright law requires that all uploads are screened. This is impossible which would make this site illegal.

“This coupled with my ISP kindly asking to move my site out of there [sic] datacenter. Means no more: leechers-paradise.”

Article 13 states that “online content sharing service providers and right holders shall cooperate in good faith in order to ensure that unauthorized protected works or other subject matter are not available on their services.”

This means if the Directive on Copyright is approved, social platforms (such as YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter) would be responsible for any type of content that users upload and would be responsible for taking down that content if it infringes on copyright.

Since it is impossible for websites and online services such as Leechers Paradise to do the screening process. Hence, Eddie decided to pull down curtains on Leechers Paradise, as he felt that the risk of continuing was not worth the gains.

While it is unclear when the finalized Article 13 text will be applicable to torrent-tracking services, looks like Eddie has his own strong reasons to shut down the service.

As we can see from the image above, the tracker was servicing 132.3 million peers at the end of July. Further, according to figures published in August, the tracker was serving just over six million torrents using IPV4 and just over 54,000 using IPV6.

Both the figures above clearly indicate how important the tracking service had been to torrent users around the world and the shutting down news is definitely a big blow for the world of torrent sharing.

Source: TorrentFreak

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PUBG Mobile is offering free $2 worth of in-game credits

Now Grab $2 PUBG Mobile Play Store Credit

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG), the most popular online multiplayer battle royale game, is offering free in-game credits up to $2.

PUBG, which just won the Best Game Award of 2018 in Google Play, has decided to thank its players for the honor by giving away free credits up to $2. However, the free credits are only available for all Android players in the U.S.

All those PUBG fans who wish to redeem free $2 credits can go to Google Play Store and claim their free reward. Just follow the steps below to redeem the credit.

  1. Open Google Play Store.
  2. Then, head to the ‘Best Games of 2018’ section.
  3. Scroll down and click on “Get up to $2 off PUBG.”

Once you redeem your $2 credit, you can use the same to purchase an item on PUBG Mobile by paying directly from Google Play Credits. Further, ensure that you redeem these free credits before the expiry date. This free credit is valid for a single transaction only.

The post PUBG Mobile is offering free $2 worth of in-game credits appeared first on TechWorm.

Tumblr to ban all ‘adult content’ from December 17

Tumblr announces ban on all adult content from its platform following App Store removal

Tumblr, a popular microblogging and social networking website, announced that starting December 17, 2018, it would be banning all ‘adult content’ from its platform to make it “a better, more positive Tumblr” and “a safe place for creative expression, self-discovery, and a deep sense of community”.

Tumblr CEO Jeff D’Onofrio in a blog post said, “Posts that contain adult content will no longer be allowed on Tumblr, and we’ve updated our Community Guidelines to reflect this policy change.

We recognize Tumblr is also a place to speak freely about topics like art, sex positivity, your relationships, your sexuality, and your personal journey. We want to make sure that we continue to foster this type of diversity of expression in the community, so our new policy strives to strike a balance.”

He further added, “As Tumblr continues to grow and evolve, and our understanding of our impact on our world becomes clearer, we have a responsibility to consider that impact across different age groups, demographics, cultures, and mindsets.

We spent considerable time weighing the pros and cons of expression in the community that includes adult content. In doing so, it became clear that without this content we have the opportunity to create a place where more people feel comfortable expressing themselves.”

Starting December 17, 2018, under the new policy, Tumblr will be banning all images and videos depicting sex acts, and images and videos depicting real-life human genitals or female-presenting nipples. However, the announcement said that illustrations or art featuring nudity that are “artistic, educational, newsworthy, or political” are acceptable and will not necessarily be removed.

Further, existing posts that are deemed as adult content by Tumblr will be flagged, but won’t immediately be deleted from the platform. Instead, these posts will be made private until December 17. Users who have adult content posts will receive notices explaining to them how to appeal against a ban, or how to “preserve their content outside the community”.

The new policy change made by Tumblr has faced wide criticism among its community who use the platform to post and view adult content. However, D’Onofrio suggests Tumblr users who want to host unwanted explicit content to take their imagery elsewhere.

“There is no shortage of sites on the internet that feature adult content,” he said. “We will leave it to them and focus our efforts on creating the most welcoming environment possible for our community.”

D’Onofrio says the decision to purge porn from Tumblr was made after “serious thought” regarding standards in the blogging community.

Tumblr’s new policy change comes a month after the Tumblr app was removed from Apple’s iOS over illegal child pornography images.

Back then, the company posted on its help site saying the illegal images were immediately taken down when discovered.

“Every image uploaded to Tumblr is scanned against an industry database of known child sexual abuse material, and images that are detected never reach the platform,” it read. “A routine audit discovered content on our platform that had not yet been included in the industry database.”

This is the second time that Tumblr has announced a big policy change. In August 2018, Tumblr cracked down on hate speech, violent imagery, and sexual harassment upsetting those users who valued free speech.

 

The post Tumblr to ban all ‘adult content’ from December 17 appeared first on TechWorm.

New trouble for Demonoid, as domain name expires

Demonoid’s domain name expires, staffers launch a backup community

In September this year, we had reported that the founder and operator of Demonoid, a popular BitTorrent tracker and one of the oldest torrent communities online, had gone missing. To make things worse, Demonoid’s tracker sub-site, Hypercache.pw had also gone offline.

Back then, Demonoid staffer ‘Phase’ had told TorrentFreak, “We don’t know why Deimos is not on Demonoid, but if I have to guess those are real-life issues and Demonoid at this moment is not a priority. I really hope that he will return in the next 1-2 months and keep this place up and running like he did last year.”

He added, “Right now, we can only wait as Demonoid is hosted on 6 continents and if one of the locations have some minor issue, the whole site will face partial issues.”

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But, this time around, Demonoid has been offline for weeks and a few days ago its main domain name expired, reports TorrentFreak. In the past too, Demonoid would be down for weeks and even months due to some technical issues, but the website would reappear as if nothing ever happened.

The staff has still not received any signs of life from the operator over the past few weeks. In fact, just recently, the most recent Demonoid.pw domain name expired, which could risk it of being lost altogether.

When TorrentFreak contacted Demonoid staffer Phase regarding the expiry of the domain name to which the staffer said that Deimos may revive the site in the future, but it is not known whether he’s aware of the domain issue. If the domain isn’t renewed soon, the registrar will delete it from the records completely.

“I contacted TLD registrar solutions on behalf of the Demonoid and staff members asking if it’s possible to pay up the domain expenses so the domain doesn’t get lost,” Phase told TorrentFreak.

However, this move hasn’t helped them, as all .pw email addresses are still currently inactive. Phase says he still has the old phase@demonoid.com handle and he is hoping that the registrar will contact him there with a solution.

Further, with no access to the site’s Twitter account, Demonoid’s staff is finding it difficult to update users on the current situation. As a result, many users are fooled by copycat sites, says Phase. For instance, Demonoid.to encourages visitors to download a scammy client.

Currently, it remains uncertain if or when the real Demonoid will come back. However, in order to keep the spirit of the Demonoid community going, the staff have temporarily created new fora at Demonoid.info where the users can get the latest updates or have a random chat.

“We staff established a Demonoid Fora for the fans so they can have at least some sense of home while Demonoid is gone. This forum is not file sharing related in any way, it’s just a way to help the community stay together,” Phase says.

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Microsoft is reportedly building a Chromium-based browser to replace EdgeHTML

Microsoft is looking to replace EdgeHTML with a Chromium-based browser

Microsoft had launched its built-in web browser ‘Edge’ to replace the much-maligned ‘Internet Explorer’ as the default browser on Windows 10.

However, Microsoft Edge has not able to see success or gain popularity since its debut in 2015.

As a result, Microsoft is rumored to be reportedly working to replace EdgeHTML, the rendering engine that Edge is built on, with a new Chromium-based web browser for Windows 10, according to a new report from Windows Central.

The new web browser will be built using Chromium, a rendering engine, which as popularized by its rival, Google Chrome.

The project rumored to be codenamed as Anaheim is likely to appear in the 19H1 development cycle, and will finally completely replace Edge early next year.

If the rumors are true, Microsoft’s new web browser would provide the same experience to users that they would get while using Google Chrome. Ironically, in terms of experience, Microsoft Edge is lagging far behind in comparison to its rival, Chrome, Safari, and Firefox.

Currently, Microsoft is shipping Windows 10 with two browsers, Internet Explorer and Edge. Will Microsoft replace Edge with a new browser or add a third browser to the OS remains to be seen. Keep watching this space as it is a developing story.

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Hackers steal data of 100 million Quora users

Quora hack exposes data of about 100 million users

Quora, the question-and-answer sharing website, announced yesterday that data of about 100 million of its users was compromised as a result of unauthorized access to one of their systems by a “malicious third party”.

“We recently became aware that some user data was compromised due to unauthorized access to our systems by a malicious third party,” Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo said in a security update blog post. “We have engaged leading digital forensic and security experts and launched an investigation, which is ongoing.  We have notified law enforcement officials. We are notifying affected Quora users. We have already taken steps to ensure the situation is contained, and we are working to prevent this type of event from happening in the future. Protecting our users’ information and fostering an environment built on trust remains our top priority so that together we can continue to share and grow the world’s knowledge.”

Quora discovered the breach on Friday, November 30, when they found that user’s data was accessed by an unauthorized third-party.

According to Quora, the following information may have been compromised:

  • Account information, e.g. name, email address, encrypted (hashed) password, data imported from linked networks when authorized by users
  • Public content and actions, e.g. questions, answers, comments, upvotes
  • Non-public content and actions, e.g. answer requests, downvotes, direct messages (note that a low percentage of Quora users have sent or received such messages)

However, as a safety measure, the company is currently notifying users whose data was compromised and logging out all affected Quora users. It has also notified law enforcement officials and has retained a leading digital forensics and security firm to assist them.

The users who wrote questions and answers anonymously were not affected by this breach, as the website does store information of people who post anonymous content. Currently, it is unknown how the attacker gained access to Quora’s systems.

“It is our responsibility to make sure things like this don’t happen, and we failed to meet that responsibility. We recognize that in order to maintain user trust, we need to work very hard to make sure this does not happen again. There’s little hope of sharing and growing the world’s knowledge if those doing so cannot feel safe and secure, and cannot trust that their information will remain private. We are continuing to work very hard to remedy the situation, and we hope over time to prove that we are worthy of your trust,” Dylan added.

Quora has advised its users to not reuse the same password as Quora across multiple services, and suggested them to change it if they are doing so. Also, we would advise our readers to use unique passwords for every site that you visit to avoid being a victim of data breach.

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NVIDIA unveils Turing-powered TITAN RTX graphics card for $2,499

NVIDIA’S TITAN RTX GPU revealed with 24 GB GDDR6 Memory, 130 TFLOPs AI Learning

NVIDIA officially unveiled their Turing-powered TITAN RTX graphics card yesterday at the 2018 Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems in Montreal, Canada.

According to the company, TITAN RTX is “the world’s most powerful desktop GPU” that offers massive performance for AI research, data science, and creative applications.

The TITAN RTX, which NVIDIA has dubbed T-Rex, is driven by the new NVIDIA Turing architecture. It can deliver 130 Teraflops of deep learning performance and 11 GigaRays of ray-tracing performance to world’s most demanding users.

“Turing is NVIDIA’s biggest advance in a decade – fusing shaders, ray tracing, and deep learning to reinvent the GPU. The introduction of T-Rex puts Turing within reach of millions of the most demanding PC users — developers, scientists and content creators,” said Jensen Huang, founder and CEO of NVIDIA.

“NVIDIA’s greatest leap since the invention of the CUDA® GPU in 2006 and the result of more than 10,000 engineering-years of effort, Turing features new RT Cores to accelerate ray tracing, plus new multi-precision Tensor Cores for AI training and inferencing. These two engines — along with more powerful compute and enhanced rasterization — enable capabilities that will transform the work of millions of developers, designers and artists across multiple industries.”

Designed for a variety of computationally demanding applications, TITAN RTX provides an unbeatable combination of AI, real-time ray-traced graphics, next-gen virtual reality and high-performance computing.

According to NVIDIA in its announcement, the TITAN RTX will feature:

  • 576 multi-precision Turing Tensor Cores, providing up to 130 teraflops of deep learning performance.
  • 72 Turing RT Cores, delivering up to 11 GigaRays per second of real-time ray-tracing performance.
  • 24GB of high-speed GDDR6 memory with 672GB/s of bandwidth — 2x the memory of previous-generation TITAN GPUs — to fit larger models and datasets.
  • 100GB/s NVIDIA NVLink can pair two TITAN RTX GPUs to scale memory and compute.
  • Incredible performance and memory bandwidth for real-time 8K video editing.
  • VirtualLink port provides the performance and connectivity required by next-gen VR headsets.

As far as specifications are concerned, TITAN RTX has 6 GPCs, 36 TPCs, 72 SMs, 4608 CUDA cores, and 72 RT Cores. It has a base clock of 1350MHz, with the boost clock maxing at 1770MHz. The memory is clocked at 7000MHz and offers a data rate of 14Gbps. For more detailed information on specifications, click here.

TITAN RTX will be available for sale later this December in the U.S. and Europe for a hefty price of $2,499.

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Popular Gaming Pirate Site ‘Good Old Downloads’ Announces Shutdown

‘Good Old Downloads’ shuts down, publishes source on GitHub

Good Old Downloads (GOD), a pirate site dedicated to gaming titles, announced on its website that it is shutting down with immediate effect, reports TorrentFreak.

For those unaware, GOD started as an alternative to GOG.com (formerly Good Old Games), that offered downloads of DRM-free games from GOG.com for people to pirate for free.

With more than million visitors visiting every month, the website started growing in popularity, which was ad-free and funded exclusively through donations.

According to a message posted on the site, the site’s operators say that they are shutting down due to attacks on the platform from rival sites and the fear of being targeted with legal action.

The farewell message on the website reads:

“We looked at other popular game piracy sites and discovered they were all filled with dozens of tracking scripts, infuriating ads (sometimes viruses) and mainly existed for the sole purpose of making money.

“In response, we created a website without any of those things and improvements; it was easy to download files, a clean design, and dead links became a thing of the past with the voting system where you could vote to have games re-uploaded automatically. Best of all, almost everything was automated so you didn’t have to rely on some person at their computer to upload files!

Which brings us to…

“Shutting Down

“Rival sites started to target us by making threats and claiming they have reported us to anti-piracy corporations. We also want to move on with our lives and enjoy other things without the constant fear of legal action breathing down our necks.”

Although GOD did not disclose the names of the rival sites due to which they decided to call it quits, they did get back at some of the other game piracy websites by publishing an investigative report (PDF file) that suggests gamers which piracy sites are safe and which ones aren’t.

“The purpose of this document is to summarize information found online that reveals the identity of the individuals that operate the gaming piracy websites ‘igg-games.com’ (http://igg-games.com/) and ‘gamestorrent.co’ (http://gamestorrent.co/) which profit from the distribution of illegal copies of video games via advertisements (pop-up ads, etc). At the time of publication, they are ranked 1,305 and 5,958 globally by Alexa.com,” the report notes.

Interestingly, the site operators of GOD decided to publish the source code of all their sites on GitHub so that its legacy lives on.

“The source code for all our sites is being released under GPLv3. Feel free to fork and improve the project; we have been working on this almost every day for nearly 2 years,” the site’s operators write.

Recently, GOD had started its own retro-gaming section on the site after Nintendo had accused gaming sites, LoveROMS.com and LoveRETRO.co of huge copyright and trademark infringement.

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Google is planning to shut down Hangouts for consumers by 2020

Google may shut down Hangouts sometime in 2020; Hangout executive rubbishes this rumor

Contrary to reports by 9to5Google, Google’s real-time chat service, Hangouts for consumers will be shutting down for good sometime in the future and not 2020, reports Android Police.

Slamming the reporting as shoddy, Scott Johnston, Realtime Comms product lead in G Suite at Google (Hangouts Meet & Chat, Google Voice) in a string of tweets said that there have been “no decisions made about when Hangouts will be shut down.”

However, he did confirm that those who are using the “classic” Hangouts will eventually be upgraded to enterprise-focused, Google Hangouts Chat and Meet. This means that Google has plans to shut down Hangouts eventually but not sometime in 2020. Also, Hangouts as a brand will live on with G Suite’s Hangouts Chat and Hangouts Meet.

For those unaware, Google Hangouts is a communication platform that was launched by the company in 2013 as a successor to Google Talk (Gchat). The messaging service includes messaging, video chat, SMS and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) features.

The shutting down of Hangouts shouldn’t come as a surprise for its consumer users, as Google did not make any changes to the app for more than a year, Also, some reviewers suggested that Hangouts app was showing signs of age, bugs as well as performance issues.

In the meanwhile, Scott Johnston has confirmed that the company plans to launch twelve more messaging apps in Hangouts.

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Apple quietly adds TRAI’s DND app to App Store

Apple adds India’s DND app to avoid iPhone ban in the country

Technology giant Apple’s war with the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has been going on for some time now over the government-approved Do-Not-Disturb (DND) app.

In July, TRAI had threatened to ban iPhones from the country’s mobile networks, if Apple did not approve the DND app by January 2019.

For those unaware, TRAI has designed the Do-Not-Disturb (DND) app, which allows users to report spam marketing as well as promotional messages and calls. While the app has been available on Android since June 2016, Apple had refused to list it on its App Store citing that the app seeks permission to record user’s calls and messages, which is a breach of user’s data privacy.

Now, Apple has finally and quietly introduced the DND app on its iOS App Store, ending the standoff with the telecommunications regulator of India. The app has gone live in the iOS App Store from yesterday, which was confirmed by an Apple spokesperson in India (via VentureBeat).

The ‘TRAI DND – Do Not Disturb’ app allows users to flag unwanted calls and messages. According to some reports, an average person in India receives up to ten unwanted calls and messages in a day.

Once the user registers his or her mobile number, they can use the app to log complaints of unwanted calls and messages, which will be then sent to TRAI. For reported calls, the TRAI will receive information such as caller’s number and time of the call, and all the contents of the SMS for reported SMS.

The description of the TRAI DND app on the App Store reads as below:

TRAI DND App will help consumers to curb unwanted Telemarketing Calls/SMS by reporting to their respective telecom service provider (TSP). With this App, consumers will be able to:

1) Register their mobile number under DND (Do-Not-Disturb)
2) Report spam SMS/Calls, after DND registration.

Note:
Registration of mobile number under DND (Do-Not-Register) will take up to 07 days after putting the request with the respective telecom service provider (TSP).

For reporting spam Call/SMS, App will auto-create a complaint registration SMS, for sending it to respective TSP. Complaint registration SMS will be sent to toll-free number 1909.

TRAI DND App will not block any SMS/Calls from authentic businesses/entities that you have subscribed too, e.g your bank, food delivery apps, travel/taxi apps etc. However, the user will be responsible for any loss occurred if they report these Call/SMS.

If you are an iPhone user and wish to download the app, you can click here. In order to install the app, your device should be running the latest version of iOS 12.1.

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12,564 Sites Blocked To Stop Movie 2.0 leaks In India

2.0 Movie: Madras High Court orders blocking of over 12,000+ websites to prevent piracy of the most expensive movie made in India

In the age of piracy, viewers nowadays are able to watch a new movie online or download it at the comfort of their home even before it is released in theatres.

While more and more countries are looking to adopt the site-blocking movement to stop piracy, some critics claim the process is too aggressive and can lead to collateral damage, reports TorrentFreak.

In a move to stop piracy, Madras High Court in India on Wednesday ordered 37 ISPs (internet service providers) across the country to stop torrent downloads of the sci-fi movie ‘2.0’ through 12,564 possible URLs (uniform resource locators) ahead of its release on Friday, 29 November 2018.

The pre-emptive interim order that was passed by Justice M Sundar on a civil suit filed by the producer of the film, Lyca Productions Private Limited, is being considered as one of the most aggressive site-blocking orders granted anywhere in the world.

Lyca’s counsel Vijayan Subramanian had produced a list of 12,564 illegal websites that were a threat to online piracy and asked the court to block them.

The producers and counsel, in particular, asked the Madras HC to prevent infamous movie website, TamilRockers from releasing the pirated version of the movie online.

Apparently, the list of illegal websites includes 2,000 websites that operated by TamilRockers, who is known for uploading pirated versions of various movies on the day of its release. The counsel sought an injunction against all such websites.

According to them, when the TamilRockers website is blocked, it immediately creates mirror websites by modifying a non-significant part of the Uniform Resource Locator (URL) or any other extension, which allows them to restore the copyrighted material with minimal effort.

Despite the order, 2.0 movie was leaked on the Internet within hours of its release yesterday by TamilRockers and was available for download. Several fans took to Twitter to report about the leak and urged the producers to take action.

Following the leak, producers of the movie took to Twitter urging audiences to not ‘spoil the experience’ considering the hard work, time, money and manpower that went into creating the ‘visual spectacle’. They also advised their fans to say ‘no to piracy’ and send all pirated links to antipiracy@aiplex.com to ‘help Tamil cinema shine’.

Apparently, the website links or URLs have been blocked. The link of the pirated version of ‘2.0’ movie that was circulating on Twitter now shows ‘Web page blocked’.

The movie 2.0, which is one of the most expensive films made in India so far, has been made on a budget of Rs 543 crores.

The film stars southern megastar Rajinikanth, Akshay Kumar, and Amy Jackson and is directed by S Shankar. The movie has been released in around 14 languages, including Mandarin in China.

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DriveSavers is offering Phone Unlocking with 100% success rate

DriveSavers is offering a customer data recovery tool to retrieve pictures and files from locked devices

DriveSavers, Inc., a computer hardware data recovery, digital forensics, and electronic discovery firm, has announced a new smartphone data recovery service that can unlock password-protected devices, including the notoriously tough-to-crack iOS devices.

According to the company, the service called Passcode Lockout Data Recovery is the first “passcode lockout recovery service” for regular consumers that has a “100 percent success rate,” irrespective of passcode length.

The service, priced around $3,900, uses new proprietary technology to recover data from password-locked smart devices that have previously been limited to law enforcement agencies and remained unavailable to the regular consumer.

“Utilizing new technology, we have a 100% success rate with unlocking and recovering data from passcode-protected smartphones of every make, model and operating system with any length passcode, including phones and tablets with more complicated passcodes of six digits or more,” reads DriveSavers’ advertising pitch in part.

While it is unknown what technology DriveSavers is using to access data on the device, it could likely be a passcode guessing feature or something related to iCloud data. According to the company, the service helps in recovering data like photos, videos, contacts, text messages, voice recordings, and notes.

The service is being offered exclusively to consumers who have forgotten device passwords, been locked out after too many incorrect attempts, and for those who need access to data stored on the device of a deceased family member.

“How do we verify the owner of a device?” DriveSavers asks. “We understand that there may be no perfect solution to this issue. However, we attempt to validate the legal right to access the data during all phases of the recovery process. This starts with the information gathered during the intake process. We also have a legal authorization form requiring specific information identifying the right to the data.”

A DriveSavers spokesperson said, “Depending on the situation, we may request death certificates, probate documents, court documents, or other legal documents. In the case of a death, we verify who is the executor of the state through interview and documentation.”

However, the service is not available for law enforcement or other government agencies, DriveSavers says. The service can be used to get access to critical or sentimental data stored on locked smart devices running any operating system, such as iOS, Android, Blackberry and Windows.

“Smartphones store irreplaceable data like family pictures and videos, contacts, notes, text messages and voice recordings,” says DriveSavers President Scott Moyer. “Losing access to this type of data can be devastating. We are delighted to offer this service to individuals who are locked out of their phones or wish to gain access to memories stored on a lost loved one’s smart device.”

Earlier this year, Israeli company Grayshift released the GrayKey device, which allowed law enforcement agencies and other organizations to get into the iPhone’s passcode security using some kind of proprietary jailbreaking software. However, Apple soon patched the flaw and the GrayKey was allegedly disabled with iOS 12.

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Dell.com announces potential cyber security breach

Dell.com resets all customer passwords after a network breach

Dell Inc., the U.S. based hardware giant, announced yesterday that the company had suffered a security breach earlier this month, on November 9, 2018. However, the company said that it managed to stop hackers who were looking to access data such as customer names, email addresses and hashed passwords.

“Dell is announcing that on November 9, 2018, it detected and disrupted unauthorized activity on its network attempting to extract Dell.com customer information, which was limited to names, email addresses and hashed passwords,” the company said in its press release.

“Upon detection of the attempted extraction, Dell immediately implemented countermeasures and initiated an investigation. Dell also retained a digital forensics firm to conduct an independent investigation and has engaged law enforcement.”

According to reports, Dell did not inform its customers about the breach when it forced the password resets for all customer accounts on November 14, 2018. Also, the company did not mention how the hackers were able to breach its network.

“Our investigations found no conclusive evidence that any information was extracted,” Dell said in its press release. “Credit card and other sensitive customer information was not targeted. The incident did not impact any Dell products or services.”

Dell said that it is still investigating the incident, but said the breach wasn’t extensive one, as the company’s engineers were able to detect the intrusion on the same day it took place.

While a Dell spokesperson refused to provide the number of affected accounts, he said that “it would be imprudent to publish potential numbers when there may be none.”

Following the security breach, the company has encouraged its customers to change password for their Dell.com account and also for other online services if they use the same or similar passwords.

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LG granted patent for smartphone with 16 camera lenses

LG patents a smartphone with 16 camera lenses on the back

LG is working on a new smartphone with 16 lenses fitted onto the back of the device, according to a new patent spotted by Dutch blog LetsGoDigital.

The patent was filed by LG with the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) and was granted on November 20. Apparently, the patent was filed by the South Korean giant in 2014 but only recently made public.

The patent explains that the 16 camera lenses on the back of the phone are arranged in a curved matrix arrangement that will allow the user to capture an image from multiple angles at the same time.

The camera software will then play back all the different photos in a ping-pong loop. This will allow the user to choose either a single image of the 16 or combine all the images captured by the lenses in a moving scene.

“You can also select a head of a person or object, after which you can turn it into almost any desired position”, notes the patent.

Another very interesting feature is that the users can use the multi-image feature to cut out a part of the image and replace it with an image taken by a different lens. It also allows the user to combine several parts of different photos to make an image.

“If any one of the graphic objects…is selected, the image of the select part, that is, the image of the head part may be replaced with a part of the image of taken from any one of the lenses corresponding to the rotation direction selected by the user,” adds the patent.

Other than the 16 lenses and the flash, the smartphone would also feature a mirror on the back that can be used to take a self-portrait (high-quality photos) using the main camera. The new design could possibly be used in a foldable phone or any other kind of form factor.

Please note that this is just a patent, and only a few of them end up as a finished commercial product or even a prototype.

Whether or not, will LG go ahead and implement the new design in its future devices, only time will tell. Just recently, Samsung had launched its Galaxy A9 (2018) smartphone that features a four-camera setup on the back.

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YouTuber makes Microsoft’s Xbox Adaptive Controller work on the Nintendo Switch

Microsoft’s Xbox Adaptive Controller Can Be Used On The Nintendo Switch

There is good news for disabled gamers! A YouTuber has come up with a workaround to get Microsoft’s Xbox Adaptive Controller work on the Nintendo’s Switch console.

For those unaware, Microsoft’s Xbox Adaptive Controller (XAC) is a video game controller designed for Windows PCs and the Xbox One video game console.

The controller launched earlier this year was designed for people with disabilities to help make user input for video games more accessible. It has 19 ports that can be connected to all different kinds of controllers and inputs, including those used by people with disabilities or limited capabilities.

While Microsoft has not set up official support for other consoles, which also includes Nintendo Switch, a YouTube channel, My Mate VINCE, that specializes in ‘How to’ guides, has released a guide on how to use the Xbox Adaptive Controller on a Nintendo Switch console.

Currently, Nintendo players need to use the standard controllers or buttons supplied with each device.

The video shows the YouTuber got the device working on the Nintendo Switch with the help of a Mayflash Magic-NS wireless controller adapter costing $20 on Amazon and a bit of software troubleshooting to remap the buttons.

Check out the detailed guide below on how to get your Xbox set up and working on the Nintendo Switch.

Please note that since Nintendo Switch does not officially support the adapter, the risk that this support might be disabled, intentionally or not, in a future Switch update is likely possible.

As we can see from the video, it takes My Mate Vince nearly 20 minutes to complete the whole process.

While one can certainly make the Adaptive Controller work on the Nintendo Switch, it would be best if Nintendo in the future makes their hardware compatible with XAC to avoid such workarounds.

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UK Parliament Seizes Facebook’s Internal Documents

Facebook’s internal documents seized by the UK Parliament to investigate privacy practices

As a part of an investigation into the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the UK Parliament has used its legal powers to seize a cache of internal Facebook documents, according to The Observer, which first reported the story.

It is alleged that the documents contain significant revelations about Facebook decisions on data and privacy controls that caused the Cambridge Analytica scandal, including correspondence between Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and company executives.

Damian Collins, chairman of the Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Committee used a rare parliamentary mechanism and compelled Ted Kramer, the founder of Six4Three, a US app software company, to hand over the documents who was on a business trip in London last week.

Kramer was given a final warning and a two-hour deadline to comply with the order sent along with a serjeant at arms.

When Kramer failed to produce these documents within the prescribed two-hour deadline, he was escorted to Parliament warned that he could face possible fines or imprisonment.

“We are in uncharted territory. This is an unprecedented move but it’s an unprecedented situation. We’ve failed to get answers from Facebook and we believe the documents contain information of very high public interest,” Collins said.

“We have very serious questions for Facebook. It misled us about Russian involvement on the platform. And it has not answered our questions about who knew what, when with regards to the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

“We have followed this court case in America and we believed these documents contained answers to some of the questions we have been seeking about the use of data, especially by external developers.”

Apparently, the company Six4Three is involved in a legal case against Facebook in the U.S., where the documents were obtained through legal procedures. The company had invested $250,000 in Facebook and claims that the media giant exploited its privacy policy.

The social networking giant has asked the DCMS committee to refrain from reviewing those documents, as they are subject to a protective order in the U.S.

“The materials obtained by the DCMS committee are subject to a protective order of the San Mateo Superior Court restricting their disclosure,” Facebook told the Observer.

“We have asked the DCMS committee to refrain from reviewing them and to return them to counsel or to Facebook. We have no further comment.”

Apparently, since the files are subject to an order of the California superior court, they cannot be made public in the U.S.

However, since the summons was issued in the UK, where Parliament has superiority, the Six4Three founder was obliged to hand over the documents. It is believed that the founder has informed both Facebook and the Californian court in the US.

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Bitcoin price falls below $4,000, as cryptocurrency market continues to plummet

Bitcoin price falls below $4,000

Bitcoin (BTC), the number 1 ranked cryptocurrency, hit a 14-month fresh low over the weekend when its price sunk under $4,000, according to CoinDesk.

The last time when Bitcoin price fell below $4,000 was in September 2017. Other cryptocurrency tokens like ether and Litecoin too suffered double-digit percentage drops within a 24-hour period.

Bitcoin, also known as a highly-volatile currency, had one of the worst prices drop last week since its bubble burst at the start of this year.

It’s price when particularly dropped to $3,667.92 represented a loss of 15.5% and its lowest in the last 24 hours. Bitcoin lost nearly a third of its value in seven days, which was down more than 35 percent.

According to CoinDesk, the market was valued at $182 billion, but that number has since fallen to $54 billion, and it now stands at $128 billion, its lowest value since September 2017.

During December 2017, the Bitcoin price had reached a golden phase when it touched the $20,000 threshold.

However, earlier this year, the value of Bitcoin dropped below $8,000, as the global cryptocurrency landscape shifted. In fact, till last month, prices were hovering around the $6,000 point.

As we can see, the price of Bitcoin has been seeing a downward trend over the last 11 months. Will the value of Bitcoin continues to fall further or will it be able to recover from its downfall, remains to be seen.

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Huawei is testing Google’s Fuchsia OS on the Honor Play

Google’s Fuchsia OS is being tested on the Kirin 970-based Honor Play

Chinese smartphone maker Huawei’s sub-brand Honor might end up being the first OEM that will be testing Google’s secretive upcoming operating system (OS) Fuchsia, according to a report by 9To5Google.

For those unaware, Huawei in the past has collaborated with Google to create the popular “Nexus 6P” smartphone.

Spotted on a new commit on Fuchsia’s official Gerrit source code management page, an engineer from Huawei directly disclosed that all the devices running Huawei’s Kirin 970 chipset will be able to run Fuchsia OS.

However, the testing will begin with the Honor Play smartphone, which would make it the first consumer Android device to be tested on Fuchsia.

The Huawei Engineers were able to add support to the Kirin 970 SoC within Fuchsia and were able to booth the Honor Play with Fuchsia’s Zircon kernel.

The other handsets running the Kirin 970 chipset include Huawei’s Mate 10, Mate 10 Pro, Mate 10 Porsche Design and P20 among others, which means that they could be compatible with Fuchsia OS in the future.

It is important to note that Fuchsia OS is still in its infancy stages with Google and it could take possibly 2 or 3 years to materialize. However, looking at the solid history between Google and Huawei and the latter’s involvement in the project, it would be interesting to see the two companies work together once again.

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Apple Working On TV Streaming Dongle To Take On Chromecast, Fire TV Stick

Apple to make a low-cost streaming dongle, similar to Google Chromecast and Amazon Fire TV

Apple is reportedly planning to launch an affordable dongle similar to Google’s Chromecast and Amazon’s Fire TV Stick, according to a report by The Information, citing people familiar with the development.

Apparently, Apple who is expected to launch its TV streaming service sometime in 2019 will directly take on the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime.

The service would be available for free to Apple device owners, which includes the Apple TV, iPhone, and iPad. Also, the dongle would be exclusive to Apple TV, iPhones and iPads only.

With the Apple TV costs $149 for the non-4K model and $179 for the 4K model, it does make sense for the company to come up with its own low-priced dongle and get people to subscribe to their streaming service in order to increase its consumer base.

Apple could either bundle the service as a standalone app or within the existing TV app, suggests rumors. It is expected to include a good mix of original programming content, third-party video services as well as the option to subscribe to TV channel packages.

Apple has already spent more than $1 billion to produce its original content for the TV streaming service.

The streaming service will launch in the U.S. first and will later be made available in more than 100 countries after a few months.

The new TV service is expected to launch sometime in 2019 and will include a TV series by the La La Land director Damien Chazelle, a drama starring Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston, a children’s show, and a science fiction show by Ron Moore among others.

What do you think about Apple’s low-cost dongle? Do let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Apple restarts iPhone X production over poor iPhone XS, XS Max sales

Poor iPhone XS, XS Max sales force Apple to restart production of iPhone X

Apple had halted the production of its 10th-anniversary smartphone, iPhone X to make way for its three new iPhones for 2018 – the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR.

However, Apple has restarted the production of iPhone X in ‘certain markets’ due to poor sales of iPhone XS and XS Max, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal. Apple has also decided to cut production on all new iPhones.

According to WSJ, Apple had agreed to purchase a certain number of OLED display panels from Samsung. However, weak sales of the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max has forced Apple to resume production of the iPhone X so that the company can fulfill the terms of its agreement with Samsung.

In other words, Apple will use iPhone X to compensate for the OLED panel demand gap caused by the decrease in sales of iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. Also, as iPhone X’s components and manufacturing equipment are older, production costs will be lower and cheaper than the iPhone XS series.

Apple’s iPhone XS and XS Max that were launched in September this year haven’t seen a good sale due to its hefty price tag. Also, the affordable iPhone XR has not fared well, which prompted Apple to cut production orders for iPhone XR.

This could be attributed to the low price and popularity of iPhone 8 even after a year of its release. In order to boost sales of iPhone XR in Japan, the Cupertino giant has already provided sales subsidies to Japanese telecom operators, which in turn should reduce the price of the smartphone.

With Apple looking to restart production of iPhone X, it remains to be seen if this move will help the company recover from the setback caused by poor sales of iPhone XS and XS Max.

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Hack Facebook or Instagram accounts and get paid up to $40,000

Facebook to pay up to $40,000 for finding ways to hack Facebook or Instagram accounts

Facebook has been going through a rough patch this year after suffering two severe security breaches that affected millions of its users.

While every year, Facebook pays millions of dollars to researchers and bug hunters to find security holes in its products and organization, it is still facing security breaches. Facebook has been running its Bug Bounty program since 2011.

Now, in order to step up its efforts to tighten the security of the platform, Facebook on Tuesday announced in a post that it has increased the average payout for account takeover vulnerabilities so as “to encourage security researchers to work on finding high-impact issues”.

The announcement further read, “The researchers who find vulnerabilities that can lead to a full account takeover, including access tokens leakage or the ability to access users’ valid sessions, will be rewarded an average bounty of:

* $40,000 if user interaction is not required at all, or
* $25,000 if minimum user interaction is required.

“This change applies to all products owned by Facebook, including Instagram, WhatsApp, and Oculus.

“Further, we will not require a full exploit chain in cases where leveraging the vulnerability requires bypassing our Linkshim mechanism.

“While monetary reward may not be the strongest incentive for why bug bounty researchers hack, we believe it remains a strong motivator for our white hat researchers to invest time in helping us identify and mitigate vulnerabilities. We encourage researchers to share their proof of concept reports with us without having to also discover bypasses for Facebook defense mechanisms.

“By increasing the award for account takeover vulnerabilities and decreasing the technical overhead necessary to be eligible for bug bounty, we hope to encourage an even larger number of high-quality submissions from our existing and new white hat researchers to help us secure over 2 billion users.”

For those unaware, earlier this year, it was the Facebook–Cambridge Analytica data scandal where the personal information of 87 million Facebook users was harvested by Cambridge Analytica without their consent and used for political purposes.

Later, in September this year, Facebook discovered a major security issue that allowed hackers to access information, which could allow them to take over around 50 million accounts.

Source: Facebook 

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Microsoft’s Sticky Notes To Add Support For Images

Microsoft teases new Sticky Notes feature that supports images

Microsoft’s Sticky Notes, which is the handiest feature for writing down tasks and notes, has been getting a lot of attention since the major overhaul of the app with version 3.0.

Now, Microsoft’s Jen Gentleman has teased a new feature that will allow users to add support for images in Sticky Notes. This feature will be made available to Windows Insiders first most likely in the upcoming update.

For those unaware, Microsoft had recently rolled out the new syncing feature on iOS and Android via the OneNote app. It also rolled out the new full-on Dark Mode that now use a dark grey background color for Sticky Notes.

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Popular Pirate Streaming Giant HDS.to Shuts Down

HDS.to is the next pirate streaming website to shutdown

HDS.to, one of the leading streaming sites in predominantly French-speaking countries with a large number of visitors, has shut down permanently, reports TorrentFreak.

According to a message posted on the site, the site’s operators said that they are shutting down the website for good. “HDS-TO is permanently closed,” it read, translated from French. “Thank you for your understanding and goodbye.”

Also Read- 15 Best Free Movie Download Websites

HDS.to is ranked among the 30 most-visited sites in Belgium, for instance, and had a substantial user base in France, Canada, and Switzerland too.

After the shutdown notice, there were rumors floating that the site was still accessible with a VPN (Virtual Private Network). However, HDS.to posted a follow-up message to clear the air surrounding the rumors.

“Warning! We do not have any accounts on social networks (Twitter, Facebook…). Announcements made by so-called official accounts are misleading,” the message read.

“Be careful also of sites that offer you to subscribe to a VPN to access the site, their goal is simply to earn money through an affiliate program when you subscribe to a VPN. Please understand that the site is permanently closed, there is no (VPN, account…) way to access it.”

At the time of writing, the above message has now been replaced with a standard “404 Not Found” error message.

The sudden closure of HDS.to is definitely a setback especially for those users who would have paid 3.99 euros per month for unlimited access to the site.

With no traces of legal issues behind the shutdown of the site, it is unclear why the operators decided to close down its shutters. The HDS team has yet to provide a reason for the sudden closure decision.

Keep watching this space for more as this is a developing story!

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You can now watch ad-supported free Hollywood movies on YouTube

YouTube is now streaming ad-supported Hollywood movies for free

Google’s YouTube, the popular video streaming service, has quietly added around 100 Hollywood ad-supported movies to its platform to watch for free.

According to AdAge, the “Free to Watch” section was added to the “Movies & Shows” section in October. However, there is no “Free to Watch” section for TV shows yet.

“We saw this opportunity based on user demand, beyond just offering paid movies. Can we do ad-supported movies, free to the user?” Rohit Dhawan, YouTube’s director of product management, told AdAge. “It also presents a nice opportunity for advertisers.”

YouTube hasn’t disclosed the deals it has made with studios and advertisers. However, several movies are from the MGM library, which includes the Rocky movies, original Terminator, Legally Blonde, Pink Panther series, and Four Weddings and a Funeral.

Besides these, other films available include Zookeeper, the two Agent Cody Banks movies, Juri Dreams of Sushi, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Out of Time. The number of films is expected to grow in the future, according to Dhawan.

For those unaware, YouTube had already rolled out a feature that allowed users to buy or rent television shows and films for viewing on its platform.

The introduction of the Free to Watch section is a new feature for YouTube. Several other ad-supported video streaming services like Roku’s The Roku Channel and Walmart’s streaming service Vudu, as well as Tubi, are already offering its own free, ad-supported movies.

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Is WatchAsap displaying a seizure banner by the feds?

WatchAsap shows a seizure banner on its website

Earlier this year, 123movies, also known as 123movieshub and GoMovies, had officially announced that they would be shutting down its service.

But before it closed down, the administrators of the 123movies website encouraged their millions of users to migrate to a paid streaming site called WatchAsap.com.

However, this website is now suddenly displaying a familiar seizure banner, which says that the domain name was seized by the feds as part of an ongoing criminal case, reports TorrentFreak.

Apparently, 123movies, the popular and largest movie pirating website that received millions of visitors per day, prompted the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) to label it “the most popular illegal site in the world.”

However, it was later learned that the site had decided to close down in response to a criminal investigation carried out by the authorities of Vietnam, where the site’s owners were allegedly based.

Several people were of the opinion that both sites were closely connected, as WatchAsap continued to remain online when 123movies decided to shut down.

“An important development in 2018 was the shuttering of a ring of piracy services that had operated under the names 123movies, 123movieshub, gostream, and gomovies following the launch of a criminal investigation in Vietnam and significant industry engagement,” the MPAA explained.

WatchAsap’s homepage changed considerably this month after remaining online for several months. Users are now greeted by a warning seizure banner instead of paid access to HD streams.

“This domain name associated with the website WatchAsap.com has been seized pursuant to an order issued by the U.S. District Court,” it reads, adding that a federal grand jury charged several individuals for related crimes.

In the past, such kind of banners have been used for criminal investigations. Other than the name of the website, the banner displayed at Megaupload.com in the past was actually identical.

Currently, it is unclear if the seizure banner on the site is due to any criminal case as no announcement about a related accusation has been made so far. Further, the domain “WHOIS” hasn’t been updated to indicate a seizure of the portal. Also, the site is still using Cloudflare’s nameservers, which is unusual in these cases when compared to previous seizures. Additionally, the WatchAsap team has not provided any public announcement for the seizure.

As a result, the mystery surrounding the seizure of WatchAsap still continues….

Keep watching this space for more, as this is a developing story!

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OneMov Operator’s Home Raided By Cyber police in Ukraine

Cyber police in Ukraine raids pirate site for infringing Universal’s copyrights

The Ukrainian cyber police recently raided the home of an alleged operator of a pirate streaming portal for infringing Universal’s copyrights, reports TorrentFreak.

The accused in question is a 24-year-old pirate website operator who is reportedly behind OneMov and 10 other pirate websites. The Ministry says that officers from the Kiev Department of Cyber policies, along with investigators from the Vasylkivsky police department, have executed a warrant in the south-eastern city of Zaporizhzhia.

Also Read- 15 Best Free Movie Download Websites

According to the authorities, the individual “reproduced and distributed audiovisual works” belonging to Universal City Studios LLLP, which is represented locally by the Ukrainian Anti-Piracy Association.

OneMov gained an international following that caught Universal City Studios’ attention. Police carried out an “authorized search” that led them to discover items relating the accused to the platform.

“In his apartment, the system unit of a personal computer containing an electronic control panel of the site was removed. In addition, a router was found that was used to administer the specified web resource and bank cards, which included funds from advertising on the specified site,” The Ministry of Affairs revealed in an official statement.

Authorities believe that the arrested man is not only linked to OneMov but could also be handling 10 other pirate websites including MovDB, OneStream and more.

The arrested man is being investigated for offenses under Part 3, Article 176 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (Infringement of Copyright and Related Rights) and may face up to 6 years in prison.

Ukraine, which is known for its high piracy rates, has often been criticized for not cracking down on online and offline piracy. Authorities have often failed to take action against local pirate and gray-area hosting platforms that has helped website like OneMov remain active in Ukraine for years.

However, after legal complaints were filed by Universal City Studios and many other popular entertainment companies, the cyber police was forced to take action against OneMov.

Earlier this year, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) kept Ukraine on its Priority Watch List (pdf), blaming government agencies of using pirated software and a “failure to implement an effective means to combat the widespread online infringement of copyright in Ukraine.”

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Unlock Any Smartphone With AI-generated ‘Master’ Fingerprints

This AI-Generated ‘Master’ Fingerprint Can Unlock Any Smartphone

Like a master key that can open any lock, researchers from the University of Michigan and New York University have created an AI-generated ‘master’ fingerprint that is capable of unlocking most of the modern smartphones.

The research team presented their work in a paper titled DeepMasterPrints: Generating MasterPrints for Dictionary Attacks via Latent Variable Evolution.

How Are Master Fingerprints Generated?

The fingerprints dubbed as “DeepMasterPrints” by the researchers can be artificially generated using machine learning algorithm.

These can be used to fool databases protected by fingerprint authentication without essentially requiring any information about the user’s fingerprints.

The artificially generated prints were able to accurately replicate more than one in five real fingerprints in a database, which should only have an error rate of one in a thousand.

DeepMasterPrints takes advantage of two flaws in fingerprint-based authentication systems. The first is that many fingerprint scanners do not read the entire finger at once.

Secondly, some different fingertip portions are more common than others, which means that scanners that only read partial prints are more likely to be tricked by common fingerprint characteristics.

The team trained a neural network to create artificial fingerprints and used evolutionary optimization methods to find their best DeepMasterPrints.

They used a common machine learning method, called “generative adversarial network” (GAN) to artificially create new fingerprints that matched as many certain portions of other fingerprints as possible.

The team points out that the attack using their AI-driven method can be distributed against random devices “with some probability of success.”

The researchers used a NIST public database with 54,000 fingerprints and 8640 finger scans as input for learning and improving their neural networks.

However, such attacks may not be able to break into your phone.

“A similar setup to ours could be used for nefarious purposes, but it would likely not have the success rate we reported unless they optimized it for a smartphone system,” lead researcher Philip Bontrager of the New York University engineering school told Gizmodo. “This would take a lot of work to try and reverse engineer a system like that.”

But, if a hacker is able to use such attacks against many fingerprint-accessible accounts, then the success rate of unlocking devices would be much more.

According to Bontrager, “the underlying method is likely to have broad applications in fingerprint security as well as fingerprint synthesis.”

He and his team want their research to motivate companies to step up fingerprint-security efforts. “Without verifying that a biometric comes from a real person, a lot of these adversarial attacks become possible,” Bontrager said. “The real hope of work like this is to push toward liveness detection in biometric sensor.”

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China builds an ‘artificial sun’ that is 6 times hotter than our ‘natural sun’

China builds an ‘artificial sun’ that can hit temperatures of 100 million degrees Celsius

Last month, we had reported that a team of scientists at the Chengdu Aerospace Science and Technology Microelectronics System Research Institute Co (CASC) in China has developed an “artificial moon”, 8 times brighter than the natural moon to replace streetlights in the country by 2020.

Now, a team at the Hefei Institutes of Physical Science of the Chinese Academy of Sciences announced that its Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) reactor, has hit a new temperature of reaching 100 million degrees Celsius.

The EAST has been dubbed as “artificial sun” since it replicates the process used by the sun to produce energy. It burns at 100 million degrees Celsius, which is over six times hotter than the core of the sun. The temperature of the real sun’s core is at around 15 million degrees Celsius. The state-of-the-art reactor is designed to turn hydrogen into cost-effective green energy.

“Scientists carried out the experiments on plasma equilibrium and instability, confinement and transport, plasma-wall interaction and energetic particle physics to demonstrate the long time scale steady-state H-mode operation with good control of impurity, core/edge MHD stability, heat exhaust using an ITER-like tungsten divertor,” the institute wrote in its announcement article.

Our sun generates light and heat energy by a process called nuclear fusion when two hydrogen nuclei combine to produce huge amount of energy. Scientists believe that nuclear fusion occurs at 100 million degrees Celsius. However, since these two hydrogen nuclei normally resist each other, it requires vast temperatures to overcome their opposing forces.

Hence, reaching over 100 million degrees Celsius is an important step as this is the minimum temperature required to create conditions that are suitable for nuclear fusion on Earth.

The aim of the EAST is to comprehend nuclear fusion process before building a full reactor and use it as an alternative source of energy on Earth in the future. The process promises more power and is far safer than fission, producing almost no dangerous nuclear waste.

“Nuclear fusion is arguably the best way for human beings to get energy. In terms of raw materials, deuterium and tritium required for nuclear fusion are almost inexhaustible in the ocean. Besides, nuclear fusion does not produce any radioactive waste, so it is extremely environmentally friendly,” said the researchers in a recently issued statement.

Matthew Hole, an Associate professor from the Australian National University told ABC News that the achievement was an important step for nuclear fusion science and could be the solution to global energy problems.

“It’s certainly a significant step for China’s nuclear fusion program and an important development for the whole world,” Dr. Hole said.

“The benefit is simple in that it is very large-scale baseload [continuous] energy production, with zero greenhouse gas emissions and no long-life radioactive waste.

The research group in charge of EAST say it accomplished this milestone through the use of various new methods in heating and controlling the plasma; however, they were able to maintain the record temperature for just around 10 seconds.

Dr. Hole also adds that the nuclear fusion reactors evade the risks related to the current nuclear fission reactors, which can be modified into dangerous weapons and are susceptible to possible meltdowns with catastrophic outcomes.

The artificial sun was designed and built by China back in 2006. EAST is 11 meters tall, has an 8 meters diameter and weighs 400 tons. According to China Daily, China becomes the first country to design and develop such an equipment on its own.

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Windows 10 October 2018 Update Rolls Out Again, Still Full Of Flaws

Windows 10 October Update Still Incompatible With Some AMD GPUs

After a delay of over a month, Microsoft finally re-released its latest Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1809) on November 14. When one thought that Windows 10 October 2018’s share of problems were far from over, it doesn’t seem so.

Microsoft has updated its Windows 10 Update history page for version 1809 that provides details of issues affecting Windows 10 client as well as Server.

“Mapped drives may fail to reconnect after starting and logging onto a Windows device,” Microsoft says, noting that symptoms include a red X on the mapped network drives in File Explorer.

Given below is the current status of Windows, version 1809, Windows Server 2019, and Windows Server, version 1809 that are affected as of November 14:

Date Current Status Affected Platforms Details
November 14, 2018, 6:00 PM PT Known Issue
  • Windows 10, version 1809
  • Windows Server 2019
  • Windows Server, version 1809
Mapped drives may fail to reconnect after starting and logging onto a Windows device.

Symptoms include:

  • In File Explorer, a red “X” appears on the mapped network drives.
  • Mapped network drives show as “Unavailable when you run the net use command from a command prompt.
  • In the notification area, a notification displays, “Could not reconnect all network drives.”

Workaround: See KB4471218 for workaround scripts to automatically reconnect a mapped network drive when you log on to the device.

Next Steps: Microsoft is working on a resolution and will provide updates in the 2019 timeframe.

November 14, 2018, 6:00 PM PT Upgrade block in place
  • Windows 10, version 1809
  • Windows Server 2019
  • Windows Server, version 1809

 

Microsoft and Trend Micro have identified a compatibility issue with Trend Micro’s OfficeScan and Worry-Free Business Security software when attempting to update to Windows 10, version 1809.

To ensure a seamless update experience, we are blocking devices running the affected business endpoint security products from being offered Windows 10, version 1809, until a specific Trend Micro Critical Patch (CP) is applied.

Next Steps: For information on when critical patches will be available for these products, please refer to Trend Micro’s Business Support Portal.

 

November 14, 2018, 6:00 PM PT Upgrade block in place
  • Windows 10, version 1809
  • Windows Server 2019
  • Windows Server, version 1809
Note: AMD no longer supports Radeon HD2000 and HD4000 series graphic processor units (GPUs).

After updating to Window 10, version 1809, Microsoft Edge tabs may stop working when a device is configured with AMD Radeon HD2000 or HD4000 series video cards.

Customers may get the following error code:  “INVALID_POINTER_READ_c0000005_atidxx64.dll”.

Some users may also experience performance issues with the lock screen or the ShellExperienceHost. (The lock screen hosts widgets, and the ShellExperienceHost is responsible for assorted shell functionality).

Workaround: To ensure a seamless update experience, we are blocking devices with AMD Radeon HD2000 and HD4000 series graphics processors from being offered Window 10, version 1809.

Next Steps: Microsoft is investigating this issue.

 

As you can see from above, Microsoft is having a compatibility issue between the 1809 update and Trend Micro’s OfficeScan and Worry-Free Business Security software.

“If a customer tries to retrieve and apply the Windows 10 October 2018 Update via Windows Update before applying the required Trend Micro Critical Patch (CP) – validated by certain driver versions – it will not be able to obtain the update for a period of 60 days from the official release of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update. Please note there will be no warning message,” Trend said.

“If a customer tries to apply the Windows 10 October 2018 Update via an installation package before applying the required Trend Micro Critical Patch (CP) – again validated by certain driver versions – a warning message will appear notifying the customer to first upgrade the Trend Micro product.”

A support page about the issue together with its patches has been posted by Trend Micro. Patches are only available for OfficeScan. Additionally, on the request of Trend Micro, Microsoft has blocked the 1809 update for devices running these security products until a patch from Trend Micro has been installed. Patches are only available for OfficeScan.

Also, machines with AMD Radeon HD 2000 or HD 4000 series video cards are facing problems. If you’re using either of these cards, the new Windows build is showing up an “INVALID_POINTER_READ_c0000005_atidxx64.dll” error code and locking the screen.

Meanwhile, Microsoft says it is working on a resolution but warns admins not to expect a solution until “the 2019 timeframe”.

Considering the share of problems still surrounding the latest Windows 10 October 2018 Update, it will be advisable for users to wait a bit before installing a fresh new OS update.

Source: Microsoft, ZDNet

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iPhone X, Samsung Galaxy S9, Xiaomi Mi 6 Hacked At Pwn2Own Tokyo 2018

iPhone X, Samsung Galaxy S9, and Xiaomi Mi 6 fall prey to hacking in the Pwn2Own hacking competition in Tokyo

Trend Micro-sponsored Pwn2Own, the annual hacking contest, that took place at the PacSec security conference in Tokyo, saw hackers successfully exploit iPhone X, Samsung Galaxy S9, and Xiaomi Mi6. Other handsets such as Google Pixel 2 and Huawei P20 too were involved in the contest.

For those unaware, Trend Micro, a global leader in cyber-security solutions, hosts Pwn2Own in an effort to promote its Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) program, that is designed to reward security researchers to exploit the latest and most popular mobile devices and demonstrate and disclose major zero-day vulnerabilities to tech companies. Following the contest, vendors will have 90 days to produce patches for these bugs.

Day 1 at the Pwn2Own Tokyo 2018

At the start of day one, Amat Cama and Richard Zhu from the “Fluoroacetate” team were the first to hack Xiaomi Mi 6 with the help of NFC component.

They used the touch-to-connect feature to force-open the web browser on the phone and navigate to their specially crafted webpage following which the webpage exploited an Out-Of-Bounds write in WebAssembly to get code execution. This hack earned them $30,000 USD and 6 Master of Pwn points.

“During the demonstration, we didn’t even realize that action was occurring until it was too late. In other words, a user would have no chance to prevent this action from happening in the real world,” ZDI reports in a blog post.

Later, the Fluoroacetate team went on to exploit another handset, Samsung Galaxy S9. They used a heap overflow in the baseband component to get code execution on the device. This hack earned the team another $50,000 USD and 15 more points towards Master of Pwn. Fluoroacetate also hacked iPhone X via Wi-Fi using a pair of bugs – a JIT (Just-In-Time) vulnerability in the web browser followed by an Out-Of-Bounds write for the sandbox escape and escalation. This hack fetched them another $60,000 USD and 10 additional Master of Pwn points.

Besides the Fluoroacetate team, another team MWR Labs (Georgi Geshev, Fabi Beterke, and Rob Miller) from UK too tried their luck on Xiaomi 6 and Samsung Galaxy S9. In the case of Xiaomi 6, they used a code execution exploit via Wi-Fi that forced the default web browser to navigate to a portal page. They then chained additional bugs together to silently install an application via JavaScript, bypass the application whitelist, and automatically start the application. This hack earned the MWR team $30,000 USD and 6 Master of Pwn points.

The MWR Labs team also combined three different bugs to successfully exploit the Samsung Galaxy S9 over Wi-Fi. They forced the phone to a captive portal without user interaction, then used an unsafe redirect and an unsafe application load to install their custom application. Although they failed in their first attempt, they successfully hacked in its second attempt, which earned the team $30,000 USD and 6 more Master of Pwn points.

Michael Contreras, a researcher who was last entry of the day, received $25,000 USD and 6 Master of Pwn points for hacking the Xiaomi Mi 6 browser via JavaScript type confusion flaw.

Day 2 at the Pwn2Own Tokyo 2018

The second day at the Pwn2Own Tokyo 2018 started with Fluoroacetate team exploiting one more zero-day vulnerabilities in iPhone X and Xiaomi Mi 6.

Their first iPhone X zero-day combined a JIT bug in the browser along with an out-of-bounds access that resulted in a deleted photo getting exfiltrated from the targeted phone. This hack fetched them a $50,000 USD.

In the case of Xiaomi Mi6, the team used an integer overflow vulnerability that allowed them to exfiltrate a picture from the device, earning them an additional $25,000 USD.

MWR Labs too successfully hacked the Xiaomi Mi6 on the second day. They loaded a custom application by combining a download bug along with a silent app installation and stole some pictures from the phone. They earned $25,000 USD for this hack.

Team Fluoroacetate with a total of 45 points and $215,000 USD in prizes won the title of Master of Pwn!

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Microsoft Releases The New Light Theme In Windows 10 19H1 Insider Build 18282

Microsoft rolls out Windows 10 19H1 build 18282 to Insiders with a new light theme

Microsoft released Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 18282 (19H1) to Windows Insiders in the Fast Ring on November 14. While the next Windows 10 iteration 19H1 includes several improvements and bug fixes, it also introduces a true Light theme for the Taskbar, Start menu, Action Center, touch keyboard, and more.

Also Read-

Previously, if elements like the Taskbar, Start menu, Action Center, touch keyboard, etc., would be left out if one selected the Light theme. However, this changes with the new build.

“Ever since we introduced the ability to choose between light and dark in Windows 10, we’ve heard feedback asking for a truer separation between the two options,” Microsoft said in a blog post.

To enable light theme in Windows 10, you need to go to Settings > Personalization > Colors. Then, click the drop-down under ‘Choose your color’ and select Light. The new theme changes many elements of the OS UI, including the taskbar, Start menu, Action Center, touch keyboard and more. If you select the Light mode in the Settings app, all system UI elements will look lighter.

“When you update to this build, your system color won’t automatically change to the new light system color. This is because we want everything to be exactly as you left it before you did the update. We’re leaving the choice up to you,” Microsoft added.

As part of this new Light theme, Microsoft is also adding a new default wallpaper highlighting Windows Light. Go to Settings > Personalization > Themes and select Windows Light to apply it. This will change your PC to be light themed.

The UI change to Light theme is not ready yet. Microsoft is likely to introduce the new Light theme in the upcoming Windows 10 19H1 feature update due in Spring 2019.

The other notable changes in Windows 10 19H1 update are improved Action Center, dark themed OneDrive and more. Furthermore, there is also a new window snip option for Snip & Sketch, improvements to the printing experience, and more. Check out the general changes, improvements, and fixes for build 18282 here.

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Microsoft finally re-releases Windows 10 October 2018 Update

Microsoft resumes rollout of Windows 10 October 2018 (version 1809)update

Microsoft has finally re-released its latest Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1809) that was delayed by more than a month after users started complaining of data loss that forced the company to pull the update offline.

“Based on (telemetry) data, today we are beginning the re-release of the October Update by making it available via media and to advanced users who seek to manually check for updates,” John Cable, Director of Program Management, Windows Servicing and Delivery, said in an announcement in a new blog post.

According to Microsoft, the so-called October 2018 Update that was delayed due to “data destroying” bug has been thoroughly investigated and all related issues have been resolved. The decision to re-release the update was reached after the careful study of diagnostic data from millions of Windows Insiders showed no further evidence of data loss.

Unlike the April Update which had the fastest Windows 10 update rollout rate, the company is taking a more measured approach with the Windows 10 October Update. The update is available to download for advanced users straight away via media and manual updates. However, those who receive the update automatically through Windows Update will see a slower rollout.

The update will be offered to users via Windows Update when data shows their device is ready. However, the update might not get installed in a user’s system if an issue is detected.

“We will offer the October Update to users via Windows Update when data shows your device is ready and you will have a great experience,” Cable continued.

“If we detect that your device may have an issue, such as an application incompatibility, we will not install the update until that issue is resolved, even if you ‘Check for updates’, so you avoid encountering any known problems.”

Microsoft has promised a renewed focus in the way it approaches quality issues, including better communication with customers.

Michael Fortin, Windows corporate Vice President said: “While we do see positive trends, we also hear clearly the voices of our users who are facing frustrating issues, and we pledge to do more.”

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Apple’s New Patent Hints At In-Display Selfie Camera

Next Apple iPhone may have a hole in its display, patent reveals

Apple who started the “notch” design standard that saw every other Android OEM incorporating in its smartphone is looking to trend set another legacy.

The Cupertino giant who had filed a patent back in June for a camera cut-out in the display has finally been approved. The patent titled “Integrated Camera Window” was approved by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on November 8.

The folks at LetsGoDigital who discovered Apple’s new patent shows an iPhone with a hole for the camera in the display. In other words, Apple is looking to place the iPhone’s front camera under the device’s screen in its future phones, thereby killing the notch design.

With this patent, Apple joins the list of companies such as Samsung, Asus, and LG who have filed similar patents in the past. However, Apple’s patent is a bit different from its contemporaries.

According to the patent, Apple wants to fit the camera window with a ‘cover glass’ where cover glass refers to the display. This display technology is presently applicable only to the LCD screen.

“Apparatus, systems, and methods for camera integration with a cover glass and for processing cover glass to provide a camera window for an electronic device are disclosed. A camera window can be integrated into the cover glass. The apparatus, systems, and methods are especially suitable for cover glasses, or displays (e.g., LCD displays), assembled in small form factor electronic devices such as handheld electronic devices (e.g., mobile phones, media players, personal digital assistants, remote controls, etc.,” the patent description reads.

Besides iPhones, other electronic devices such as portable computers, tablet computers, displays, monitors, televisions as well as iPads, MacBooks, and iMacs could see in-display camera technology soon.

While patents are filed all the time, it is not necessary that every patent is converted into a finished commercial product or even a prototype. Whether or not, Apple will go ahead and implement the display technology in its future devices, only time will tell.

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Cloudflare launches its 1.1.1.1 DNS service for Android and iOS smartphones

Cloudflare’s privacy-focused 1.1.1.1 DNS service now available on iOS and Android

Earlier this year, Cloudfare Inc., a website performance and security company, had rolled out a new free public domain name system (DNS) resolver service with 1.1.1.1 as its IP address on April Fool’s day. The company has now released the mobile apps of the 1.1.1.1 privacy-first DNS resolver service for Android and iOS users.

“The 1.1.1.1. app makes your Internet faster and more private. It is darn easy to set up. And, the best part: it’s free!

“It is the right thing to do. We are making it easier for everyone to make their experience when they use the Internet more private. People should not have to pay to have a more private Internet.

“Beyond that, millions of websites rely on Cloudflare for performance and security. By getting more users on 1.1.1.1, we make those sites faster. That makes Cloudflare better, and it makes the Internet better, a win-win,” Mohd Irtefa the Product Manager at Cloudflare, said in a blog post.

For those unaware, DNS services are usually provided by Internet Service Providers (ISPs), and allow you to change a domain name, for instance, like Google.com into an IP address that routers and switches can understand. DNS basically changes names of websites into numbers, which could slow down your web browsing if you aren’t using a speedy DNS server.

While Cloudflare’s 1.1.1.1 DNS service is a basic DNS server, it is different from your ISP’s or other DNS alternatives like Google Public DNS and Cisco OpenDNS, as its goal is to provide users’ faster internet connection and offer utmost privacy.

“Any time you are on a public internet connection people can see what sites you visit. Even worse, your Internet Service Provider is very possibly selling all of your browsing history to the highest bidder. We have a tool called 1.1.1.1 which makes it easy to get a faster, more private, Internet experience” added Mohd Irtefa.

The mobile app uses a support feature like VPN (virtual private network), which directs your mobile traffic towards the 1.1.1.1 DNS servers. Cloudflare’s DNS server funnels DNS traffic that not only makes it difficult for your ISP to track the sites you are visiting, but it also allows you to freely browse the site you want without having your connection censored or hijacked.

Cloudflare is committed to not tracking users or selling advertising. However, it needs to keep logs of user data for 24 hours to prevent abuse and debugging issues, after which all the logs will be purged. The company has also retained KPMG, the well-respected auditing firm, to audit their code and practices annually and publish a public report to confirm that it’s not selling user information.

The Cloudflare app is user-friendly and mobile users can easily push the on/off button to operate the DNS service. You can download the free app from Apple’s App Store and Google Play to make your internet connection faster and safer.

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NVIDIA unveils the Quadro RTX 4000 GPU with 2,304 CUDA Cores, 8GB GDDR6 memory

NVIDIA announces mid-range Quadro RTX 4000 with Turing GPU, 2304 Cores and 8 GB VRAM

NVIDIA announced its new Quadro RTX 4000 graphics card for workstation professionals at the annual Autodesk University Conference in Las Vegas yesterday. This is the company’s first mid-range professional GPU in Quadro RTX family that is powered by the NVIDIA Turing architecture and the NVIDIA RTX platform.

The Quadro RTX family already consists of the Quadro RTX 8000, RTX 6000, and RTX 5000. The single-slot design of the new Quadro RTX 4000 allows the GPU to fit in a variety of workstation chassis.

“Meet today’s demanding professional workflows with GPU accelerated ray tracing, deep learning, and advanced shading. The NVIDIA Quadro RTX 4000, powered by the NVIDIA Turing architecture and the NVIDIA RTX platform, delivers best-in-class performance and features in a single-slot PCI-e form factor. Design and create like never before with faster time to insight and faster time to solution,” NVIDIA said.

According to specifications provided by NVIDIA, the graphics card has 36 RT cores to enable real-time ray tracing of objects and environments with physically accurate shadows, reflections, refractions, and global illumination.

Further, it packs 2,304 CUDA cores, 288 Turing Tensor Cores for 57 TFLOPS of deep learning performance, and comes with 8GB of ultra-fast GDDR6 memory that provides over 40 percent more memory bandwidth than the previous generation Quadro P4000. It also supports video creation and playback for multiple video streams with resolutions up to 8K.

In addition, it provides hardware support for VirtualLink, improved performance with VR applications, including Variable Rate Shading, Multi-View Rendering and VRWorks Audio, and more.

In terms of performance, the Quadro RTX 4000 offers up to 43T RTX-OPS and 6 Giga Rays/s. The FP32 compute performance is estimated at 7.1 TFLOPS, which translates into a boost clock of around 1540 MHz. The TU106-based Quadro has a 160W rated TDP and has been enclosed into a single-slot cooling solution, which should easily fit in any workstation case. It draws power from a single 8-pin PCIe power connector.

Ernesto Pacheco, Director of Visualization at the global architectural firm, CannonDesign, which is one of the early users of the Quadro RTX 4000 said, “Our designers need tools that unleash their creative freedom to design amazing buildings. Real-time rendering with the new Quadro RTX 4000 is unbelievably fast and smooth right out of the gate — no latency and the quality and accuracy of the lighting is outstanding. It will enable us to accelerate our workflow and let our designers focus on the design process without the technology slowing them down.”

The Quadro RTX 4000 will be available starting December on nvidia.com at an estimated price tag of $900. It will also be available from leading workstation manufacturers, like Dell, HPE and Lenovo, as well as its authorized distribution partners in North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.

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Facebook is the least-trusted major tech company- study

Facebook Is the Least Trusted Major Tech Company Among Americans For Protecting Personal Data, Suggests Polls

Facebook, the social networking giant, has been voted as the least trustworthy tech company, according to a recent survey conducted by Fortune. Thanks to Facebook’s increasing scrutiny for its handling of data privacy, ad targeting, and propaganda that has made its users trust the company the least.

According to the survey, only 22 percent of Americans trust Facebook with their personal information out of all major tech companies. On the other hand, Amazon with 49 percent ranks the highest in terms of trust, followed by Google (41 percent), Microsoft (40 percent), and Apple (39 percent).

“Facebook is in the bottom in terms of trust in housing your personal data,” said Harris Poll CEO John Gerzema. “Facebook’s crises continue rolling in the news cycle.” The poll was carried out by Harris Poll on behalf of Fortune in mid-October that surveyed over 2,000 U.S. adults.

This obvious lack of trust is bad news for Facebook, which is mainly due to factors such as leadership, ethics, trust, and image. Also, the Cambridge Analytica scandal earlier this year where up to 87 million Facebook users data was shared without their permission, along with the September data breach in which roughly 50 million of its users’ data was exposed through an attack on its network, has only attributed to Facebook’s low rankings.

Additionally, 48 percent of those who took the survey admitted to viewing Facebook more negatively than six months ago.

According to the survey, only 59 percent of respondents said they were “at least somewhat confident” in Zuckerberg’s leadership in the ethical use of data and privacy information. With 77 percent, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos came in first, followed by Apple’s CEO Tim Cook at 72 percent, Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella at 71 percent, and Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai at 68 percent.

“That would be a C or D in grade school,” Gerzema said about Zuckerberg.

Facebook declined to comment on the poll. The company instead pointed to recent remarks made by Zuckerberg where he said that Facebook continues to invest in security and that its defenses are improving.

Not only the Facebook users, but some of the company’s major investors too are disappointed by Zuckerberg. Last month, several major public investment funds had proposed removing Zuckerberg as the company’s chairman of the board.

Source: PYMTS

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How to create your own WhatsApp stickers on Android smartphones

Create your own custom stickers for WhatsApp, here’s how

WhatsApp, the Facebook-owned instant messaging platform, had last week rolled out a new feature of Stickers in the chats for both iOS and Android platform. The Stickers feature allows users to send different stickers while chatting just like its competitors such as Hike Messenger, Telegram, WeChat and more.

WhatsApp rolled out 12 stickers pack for its users in the latest update version 2.18. The users can now view these stickers under a new option in the emoji section of the app called Stickers, which they can share with friends and family on personal and group chats.

“Whether with a smiling teacup or a crying broken heart, stickers help you share your feelings in a way that you can’t always express with words. To start, we’re launching sticker packs created by our designers at WhatsApp and a selection of stickers from other artists,” WhatsApp had said in a blog post.

Additionally, it has also added support for third-party sticker packs to allow users to create their own personal stickers for WhatsApp.

If you want to make things more interesting, you can create your own sticker packs, and then load them onto WhatsApp by following the step-by-step guide below. These stickers can be published on Google Play Store from where they can be downloaded by multiple users.

Before you start, there are two pre-requisites needed to create your own stickers pack: (1) Latest version (2.18) or above of WhatsApp, and (2) Working Internet connection.

  1. Go to Google Play Store for Android and search for an app called ‘Sticker maker for WhatsApp’ by the developer Viko & Co.
  2. Download and install the app on your Android device. Please note that is a third-party app.
  3. Once installed, launch the app, you will see an option called ‘Create a new sticker pack’. It will ask to input details like Stickerpack name and Sticker pack author. You can choose to fill the requested details or totally skip this step. Once you are done, tap the option ‘Create.’
  4. Once done, open the folder/pack you have just created. You will see a ‘tray icon’ (an empty sticker tray) with a capacity of up to 30 stickers. (Note, you will need to add all 30 stickers at once as the pack cannot be edited once published on WhatsApp. Further, you can publish your stickers pack with fewer stickers, but cannot add more to the pack upon publishing.)
  5. Click on the place ‘tray icon’. You will have an option to add a file from your phone storage or click a new one for the sticker pack.
  6. After getting the image, you will have to outline the part of the picture you want in the sticker. Click on the ‘Yes, Save Sticker’ option. Note, you need to add at least three stickers to publish your sticker pack.
  7. Once you are done adding all the stickers, click on the green-color ‘Publish Sticker Pack’ button on the bottom right. It will then give a prompt if you want to add the pack to WhatsApp. Accept it.

After the above process is complete, open WhatsApp and go to the Stickers section by tapping on the Emoji icon from the left of the text box. Choose the Stickers option and look for the stickers you have added. Tap on it to send the stickers you have created with your friends and family.

If you want to create a sticker app which anybody can use, then you need to follow the below instructions given by WhatsApp:

To create your own sticker art, your stickers must meet the following requirements:

* Each sticker is an image that has a transparent background.
* Stickers must be exactly 512×512 pixels.
* Each sticker must be less than 100 KB. See the README files associated with the sample apps for tips on reducing the file size of your stickers.

You must also provide an icon that will be used to represent your sticker pack in the WhatsApp sticker picker or tray. This image should be 96×96 pixels and must be less than 50 KB. See the README files associated with the sample apps for tips on reducing the file size of your tray icon.

In addition to the requirements above, we strongly recommend the following when designing your stickers:

* Stickers will render on a variety of backgrounds, including white, black, colored and patterned. For this reason, we recommend you add an 8-pixel #FFFFFF stroke to the outside of each sticker. View this sample Photoshop (PSD) file.
* There should be a 16-pixel margin between the actual sticker image and the edge of the 512×512 pixel canvas.

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