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Taliban Attack Security Checkpoint and Hospital in Pakistan

NY Times - 9 hours 28 min ago
At least nine people were killed, including six police officers, and 30 others wounded in a two-pronged assault in the northwest of the country, officials said.

For Boris Johnson’s Clan, Blood Is Thicker Than Political Conviction

NY Times - 9 hours 31 min ago
Cast as something between the Kennedys and the Kardashians, the relatives of the pro-Brexit juggernaut likely to become the next U.K. prime minister don’t always share his views.

A whole nation just got hacked

CNN - 9 hours 42 min ago
Asen Genov is pretty furious. His personal data was made public this week after records of more than 5 million Bulgarians got stolen by hackers from the country's tax revenue office.

Thousands of bones discovered in Vatican crypt in search for missing teenager

CNN - 9 hours 47 min ago
Thousands of bones have been unearthed in two ossuaries discovered in the Vatican City, as part of an ongoing search for clues into the disappearance of a 15-year-old girl more than three decades ago.

‘He always doubles down’: Inside the political crisis caused by Trump’s racist tweets

Washington Post - 9 hours 50 min ago
The president followed his gut to the dark side of American politics, and now the country would have to pick up the pieces.

Most Wikipedia Profiles Are of Men. This Scientist Is Changing That.

NY Times - 9 hours 51 min ago
Jessica Wade has added nearly 700 Wikipedia biographies for important female and minority scientists in less than two years.

4 teen inmates staged a fight, overpowered staff and escaped, officials say

CNN - 10 hours 8 min ago
Four teenagers escaped a juvenile justice facility in Jacksonville, Florida, on Saturday night after staging a fight in their room and overpowering the staff members who responded, the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said in a tweet.

Cory Booker: President Trump is worse than a racist

CNN - 10 hours 14 min ago
Democratic presidential candidate Cory Booker tells CNN's Dana Bash that President Donald Trump's use of racist tropes for political gain makes Trump "worse than a racist."

2 Southwest planes back into each other

CNN - 10 hours 27 min ago
Two planes are out of service after a collision knocked the "S" out of Southwest on one of the aircraft.

Amazon warns customers: Those supplements might be fake

Ars - 10 hours 35 min ago

Enlarge (credit: Getty | John Greim)

On the second evening of Prime Day, Amazon’s annual sales bonanza, Anne Marie Bressler received an email from Amazon that had nothing to do with the latest deals. The message, sent from an automated email address Tuesday, informed her that the Align nutritional supplements she ordered two weeks earlier were probably counterfeit. “If you still have this product, we recommend that you stop using it immediately and dispose of the item,” the email reads, adding that she would be receiving a full refund. It’s not clear how many other customers may have purchased the fake supplements. Amazon confirmed that it sent out the email but declined to specify the number of customers impacted.

For years, Amazon has battled third-party sellers who list knockoffs of everything from iPhone charging cables to soccer jerseys on its site. Nutritional supplements are another popular target for fakes, as it’s a largely unregulated industry. The US Food and Drug Administration has been criticized—including by former staff—for declining to test dietary supplements for safety and effectiveness the same way it does pharmaceuticals. In this instance, the problems came together: An Amazon merchant sold dupes of genuine probiotics made by Align, a Procter & Gamble brand.

“We are aware that some counterfeit Align product was sold on Amazon via third parties,” Mollie Wheeler, a spokes­person for Procter & Gamble, said in an email. “Amazon has confirmed they have stopped third party sales of the Align products in question and Amazon is only selling Align product received directly from P&G manufacturing facilities.”

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Howard Stern wants O.J. Simpson kicked off Twitter

CNN - 10 hours 43 min ago
Radio host Howard Stern said he wants O.J. Simpson banned from Twitter during an interview with Kim Goldman, the sister of Ron Goldman.

Can Disney’s Circle really deliver a porn-free Internet?

Ars - 10 hours 44 min ago

Enlarge / Can the Mouse keep your house safe from the sketchy parts of the Internet? (credit: Aurich Lawson / Getty)

Filtering out the bits of human knowledge you don't like and leaving all the bits you do is a deceptively difficult task; it's one of the classic "I may not know art, but I know what I (don't) like" problems. If you have a family with small children and absolutely any adult member of that family is not a complete libertine, though, it's a problem you'll need to address. The latest edition of the Disney-backed Circle filtering platform aims to help, via either a standalone IoT gadget ($35) or a service embedded in higher-end Netgear routers and mesh kits, such as Orbi RBK50 ($300) or Nighthawk R7000P ($160).

Twenty years ago, the problem was trying to keep an up-to-date database of everything on the Internet and whether it was naughty or not. In 2019, we've got the Big Data chops for that, but a larger problem has cropped up—end-to-end encryption. The HTTPS standard treats everything in between the website itself and the device you're viewing it on as potentially hostile. It keeps those potential hostiles from seeing or altering what you're doing. So while your router (or any other device in the middle) might be able to tell—or at least effectively guess—what website you're visiting, it has no idea what you're actually doing there.

That means filtering based on the actual content you're looking at isn't possible, and family filtering is a semi-blind guessing game. Many companies and devices claim to do it, but Circle is the first one I've seen that does it even tolerably well.

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ASAP Rocky Won’t Get Special Treatment, Swedish Prime Minister Says

NY Times - 10 hours 45 min ago
The rapper has been held in Sweden on an assault charge. President Trump, lobbied by celebrities, called the prime minister to try to get him released.

Watch this paper doll do sit-ups thanks to new kind of “artificial muscle”

Ars - 11 hours 32 sec ago

A new twist on a special kind of polymer is what enables this paper doll to do calisthenics.

A new twist on lightweight organic materials shows promise for artificial-muscle applications. Chinese scientists spiked a crystalline organic material with a polymer to make it more flexible. They reported their findings in a new paper in ACS Central Science, demonstrating proof of concept by using their material to make an aluminum foil paper doll do sit-ups.

There's a lot of active research on developing better artificial muscles—manmade materials, actuators, or similar devices that mimic the contraction, expansion, and rotation (torque) characteristic of the movement of natural muscle. And small wonder, since they could be useful in a dizzying range of potential applications: robots, prosthetic limbs, powered exoskeletons, toys, wearable electronics, haptic interfaces, vehicles, and miniature medical devices, to name just a few. Most artificial muscles are designed to respond to electric fields, (such as electroactive polymers), changes in temperature (such as shape-memory alloys and fishing line), and changes in air pressure via pneumatics.

Yet artificial muscles typically weigh more than scientists would like and don't respond as quickly as needed for key applications. So scientists are keen to develop new types of artificial muscle that are lightweight and highly responsive. Just this past week, Science featured three papers from different research groups (at MIT, University of Texas at Dallas, and University of Bordeaux) describing three artificial-muscle technologies based on tiny twisted fibers that can store and release energy.

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