Can Facebook be broken up? What you need to know

Twitter, Facebook, Together, Exchange Of Information

  Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wields so much power that even one of the social network’s co-founders thinks it’s both ‘unprecedented’ and ‘un-American.’ Chris Hughes, who co-founded Facebook with Zuckerberg while they were students at Harvard, called for the social network to be broken up in an op-ed published Thursday by The New York Times. ‘I’m angry that his focus on growth led him to sacrifice security and civility for clicks,’ Hughes wrote, referring to Facebook’s boss and major shareholder. ‘I’m disappointed in myself and the early Facebook team for not…

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Grad student creates program that helps stabilize fusion plasma

Imène Goumiri, a Princeton University graduate student, has worked with physicists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) to simulate a method for limiting instabilities that reduce the performance of fusion plasmas. The more instabilities there are, the less efficiently doughnut-shaped fusion facilities called tokamaks operate. The journal Nuclear Fusion published results of this research in February 2016. The research was supported by the DOE’s Office of Science. The new method uses feedback from sensors for real-time control of the rotation of plasma that swirls…

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The Rising Price of Medicare Part D’s 10 Most Costly Medications

Perhaps surprising no one, researchers at Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at University of California San Diego have found that the cost for the 10 “highest spend” medications in Medicare Part D — the U.S. federal government’s primary prescription drug benefit for older citizens — rose almost one-third between 2011 and 2015, even as the number of persons using these drugs dropped by the same amount. Writing in the July 4 issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society , Jonathan Watanabe, PharmD, PhD, associate professor of…

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Moving electrons around loops with light: A quantum device based on geometry

While a classical bit found in conventional electronics exists only in binary 1 or 0 states, the more resourceful quantum bit, or ‘qubit’ is represented by a vector, pointing to a simultaneous combination of the 1 and 0 states. To fully implement a qubit, it is necessary to control the direction of this qubit’s vector, which is generally done using fine-tuned and noise-isolated procedures. Researchers at the University of Chicago’s Institute for Molecular Engineering and the University of Konstanz have demonstrated the ability to generate a quantum logic operation, or…

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Hackers leak personal data trove on Angela Merkel, top German politicians

Brexit Back On The Agenda At EU Summit

Hacked personal data of hundreds of German politicians was trickled out on Twitter for more than a month before government officials caught wind of it.  The data, posted by a Twitter user named @_0rbit, included personal information on German Chancellor Angela Merkel, as well as phone numbers, documents and email addresses for top German politicians. The hack affected members of all German political parties with the exception of Alternative for Germany (AfD), the country’s far-right political group. The first post published on Dec. 1 and the hacker was posting daily…

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Comcast wants to take on Google and Amazon as a smart-home hub


Cable giant Comcast may be taking on Amazon and Google to be the commander of your smart home.  Comcast is testing a program that would allow its broadband-only customers to turn their TVs into smart-home hubs, according to a person familiar with the matter. The program uses Comcast’s existing hardware as well as the software powering its X1 video service to make the TV a place where internet-only households can control things like connected light bulbs or security cameras with voice commands.  Comcast’s move would be a first shot at…

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Smart display review roundup: The next frontier for the smart home?


We’ve come to call them ‘smart displays,’ these countertop touchscreen devices that also feature either the Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant voice services. The Amazon Echo Show was the first example in this category, and while it had a clunky design, its 2017 debut proved that the concept had potential.  The category his since grown to eight or nine different offerings, depending on how you define them, each with a variation on the core theme. All of them use a voice assistant and a touchscreen in combination to answer questions,…

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House Republican campaign committee was hacked during 2018 election

NRCC Field Office

The National Republican Congressional Committee was hacked during the 2018 US midterm elections.  The breach, first reported by Politico, exposed thousands of emails to an unknown hacker.  ‘The NRCC can confirm that it was the victim of a cyber intrusion by an unknown entity,’ Ian Prior, a spokesman for the NRCC, said in a statement. ‘The cybersecurity of the Committee’s data is paramount, and upon learning of the intrusion, the NRCC immediately launched an internal investigation and notified the FBI, which is now investigating the matter.’  The FBI declined to…

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Congress asks FCC for emergency briefing on ending location data sales

House Democrats Condemn Trump

Despite the government shutdown, Congress is calling on the Federal Communications Commission to explain why mobile carriers are still selling customer location data. On Friday, Rep. Frank Pallone, who chairs the House Energy and Commerce committee, asked FCC Chair Ajit Pai for an ’emergency briefing’ on why the agency hasn’t stopped wireless carriers from selling customer’s real-time location information. He made the request in a letter (PDF). The request for an emergency briefing comes three days after Motherboard reported T-Mobile, AT&T, Sprint and other carriers were allowing third-party data aggregators to…

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