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Jan 15, 2020 6:40 AM ET

The infinite text adventure AI Dungeon 2 is now easy to play online

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 15, 2020 - Credit: Nick Walton AI Dungeon 2 may not have appeared on The Verge’s game of the year list, but it’s one of the coolest video game experiments of 2019, and it’s now playable in its easiest form yet. AI Dungeon 2 is an adventure game run by a text generation program, capable of responding to basically any command with a coherent response. Its earlier versions were either clumsy to set up or limited to mobile apps, which aren’t. [more...]

Jan 15, 2020 6:10 AM ET

Apps don’t provide reliable help for suicide prevention

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 15, 2020 - Photo by Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images A handful of depression management and suicide prevention apps — downloaded millions of times — included incorrect or nonfunctional contact information for suicide crisis help lines, according to a new analysis. While apps can offer people with suicidal thoughts or behaviors an important lifeline, experts are worried that many of the apps available on the Apple App Store or Google Play may not be. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 1:10 PM ET

Netflix’s The Witcher has made The Witcher 3 way more popular

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Photo: Katalin Vermes / Netflix Netflix’s The Witcher is really popular, at least according to the company — it’s in their top ten most popular series releases this year, despite debuting about a week and a half ago. That’s given The Witcher games a huge bump on Twitch and Steam. Kotaku reported yesterday that over on Steam, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt — a great game — set a new active player count record, with 94,000 people playing the game,. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 12:40 PM ET

NIO’s new SUV can’t save the company from its current problems

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - NIO’s new EC6 SUV, which is expected to hit the road in late 2020. | Images: NIO NIO, China’s leading EV startup, announced its third production vehicle this past weekend, a small and sporty all-electric SUV called the EC6. The Tencent-backed automaker also announced it has developed a new battery pack that will enable all three of its production models to travel well over 300 miles on a full charge. But. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 12:10 PM ET

Go read this Hollywood Reporter story about the arson attack at Kyoto Animation

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Photo credit should read JIJI PRESS/AFP via Getty Images In July, a man walked into a Kyoto Animation’s Studio One and set fire to a bucket of gasoline. The resulting explosion killed 36 people, injured dozens more, and destroyed much of the Studio One building. The Hollywood Reporter today published a feature story about the attack and its aftermath that’s really worth reading. It’s not an easy read, but I walked away. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 11:40 AM ET

Sonos explains why it bricks old devices with ‘Recycle Mode’

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Late last week, Sonos was called out on Twitter by Devin Wilson for its practices around sustainability. The company drew particular attention for a “Recycle Mode” software feature that, once activated, begins a countdown that eventually renders older Sonos devices basically inoperable. Recycle Mode is part of the trade-up program that Sonos announced back in October, which lets customers get a discount on newer Sonos speakers. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 11:10 AM ET

Go read this ‘Cloud Hopper’ hacking investigation by the WSJ

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge The global hacking campaign known as “Cloud Hopper” perpetrated by government-sponsored Chinese hackers was much worse than originally reported, according to an investigation by the Wall Street Journal you should read in full. The report says that “at least a dozen cloud providers” were affected, but focuses on HP to illustrate the severity of the intrusions and the tactics used to attack and defend. ”The Journal. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 10:40 AM ET

No one is ready for California’s new consumer privacy law

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge The California Consumer Privacy Act goes into effect January 1st, and it doesn’t look like anyone, even the state of California itself, is totally ready. Draft regulations for enforcing the law are still being finalized at the state level, and questions about specific aspects of the most sweeping privacy regulation since the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are still not clear. “If you thought. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 10:10 AM ET

The Witcher’s success is held back by Netflix’s release strategy in a post-Game of Thrones world

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - The Witcher has everything it needs to be Netflix’s next success: popular source material, a massive marketing campaign, a well-received performance by Henry Cavill, and an iconic meme in the form of the hit song “Toss A Coin To Your Witcher.” Yet, while certainly popular, it doesn’t seem like The Witcher is going to become “must see” television like other recent hits, such as The Mandalorian on Disney+ or Watchmen on HBO. At least part of the reason why. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 9:40 AM ET

Netflix claims The Witcher is already one of its most popular shows of 2019

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Image: Netflix Netflix released its list of the most popular movies and TV shows of 2019 and, with the exception of Disney Pixar’s Incredibles 2, every title on the list is a Netflix original. Most notable is Adam Sandler’s Murder Mystery, which Netflix declared as the most watched title in 2019. The Sandler and Jennifer Aniston-starring comedy broke records when it first hit Netflix back in June, generating more than 30 million account views within its. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 9:10 AM ET

The theme for the Times Square New Year’s Eve bash is climate change

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Photo credit should read DON EMMERT/AFP via Getty Images Times Square revelers will ring in the New Year to a theme of existential crisis tonight. Science teachers and students taking on the climate crisis will push the crystal button to trigger the ball drop in Times Square. Organizers of the annual New Year’s Eve celebration in New York City choose a theme each year based on the biggest issues in. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 8:40 AM ET

Vizio accuses LeEco of breaching settlement over failed $2 billion merger

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Vizio says LeEco has breached the settlement the two companies agreed to last year in the $60 million lawsuit over their failed merger, and claims the Chinese tech conglomerate still owes a “substantial amount of money,” according to a new motion filed in California’s central district court on Monday. LeEco, which was once considered to be the “Netflix of China,” tried to buy Vizio in 2016 for $2 billion as part of. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 8:10 AM ET

US Army bans soldiers from using TikTok

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Photo by Chesnot/Getty Images United States Army soldiers can no longer use TikTok on government-owned phones following a decision to ban the app. The move comes amidst ongoing worries that the video app owned by Beijing-based company ByteDance could compromise national security or be used to influence or surveil Americans. “It is considered a cyber threat,” Army spokeswoman Lt. Col. Robin Ochoa toldMilitary.com, which broke the news on December 30th. The army reportedly used. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 7:40 AM ET

Smoke app brings parts of Valve’s Steam to the Apple Watch

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - For people who want to check in on their gaming achievements in Steam or stay up to date with the latest sales, this Apple Watch app has you covered. Smoke gives Apple Watch users access to their Steam account, but that doesn’t mean people have the ability to play games from their wrist. The app exists to let you stay up to date on gaming news and to see what. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 7:10 AM ET

New Apple patent imagines virtual speakers that can simulate sound from anywhere in the room

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Image: USPTO Apple has just been granted a patent — concerning virtual positioning of audio — that could eventually lay the groundwork for new, more immersive audio applications. It builds on a previous patent Apple filed last month that enabled users to hear where people are physically located in a room through special headphone tech. Today’s patent does exactly the same thing, but with built-in MacBook speakers. According to 9to5Mac, it’s a virtual acoustic system that. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 6:40 AM ET

Google will finally stop using controversial Irish and Dutch tax loopholes

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge The era of Google using a pair of controversial loopholes to save billions of dollars in taxes on overseas ad revenue is coming to a close, according to a new report from Reuters. In 2020, the company will no longer take advantage of the so-called “Double Irish” and “Dutch sandwich” loopholes, which allowed it and countless other corporations to shift money from Ireland to the. [more...]

Jan 14, 2020 6:10 AM ET

TikTok claims zero takedown requests from China in first transparency report

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 14, 2020 - Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge TikTok released its first transparency report yesterday, showing which countries have submitted requests for content removal as well as access to user data. China is notably absent from the report—the video sharing app, owned by Chinese tech giant ByteDance, claims it did not receive a single takedown request from Communist Party of China in the first half of 2019. The news comes after a difficult. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 1:40 PM ET

Trump signs law increasing max robocall fine to $10,000

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge President Trump has signed a law increasing fines on spammy robocalls and requiring phone service providers to begin authenticating calls across networks. The Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act (TRACED Act) was signed on Monday, after Congress approved the landmark billearlier this month to give the federal government new abilities to go after illegal robocallers. Fines can now reach $10,000 per. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 1:10 PM ET

Disney+ is now getting two big Marvel series in 2020

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - WandaVision was one of the biggest Disney+ shows planned for 2021, but the company announced today that the Marvel series’ release date is moving up to 2020. Disney revealed the news in a sizzle reel teasing what’s set to hit the streaming service this year. There’s no specific release date for WandaVision yet, making it unclear if it will premiere before or after Marvel’s other highly anticipated Disney+ show, Falcon and the Winter Solider. Adding the. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 12:40 PM ET

FDA expected to ban most flavored e-cigarette pods

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge All flavored e-cigarette pods except menthol and tobacco are expected to be banned by the Food and Drug Administration, which could announce the plans this week, according to the Wall Street Journal and New York Times. The flavored pod ban would be a step back from the nearly complete flavored vape ban the Trump administration initially floated back in September, as lung injuries from vaping were on the. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 12:10 PM ET

Google just beat humans at spotting breast cancer — but it won’t replace them

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Photo credit should read ANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT/AFP via Getty Images Google is developing artificial intelligence to help doctors identify breast cancer, according to a research paper published in Nature today. The model, which scans X-ray images known as mammograms, reduces the number of false negatives by 9.4 percent—a hopeful leap forward for a test that currently misses 20 percent of breast cancers, as reported by The New York Times. Today, breast cancer is the second. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 10:40 AM ET

ProtonMail just added an encrypted calendar to its encrypted Gmail competitor

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - ProtonMail ProtonMail just launched an encrypted calendar beta to let users manage their schedules privately. It’s the latest tool from a company known for its encrypted email services, and could help users who are looking to wean themselves off Google. The tool, called ProtonCalendar, is currently available for all users with a paid ProtonMail plan. In the future, the company plans to launch the calendar for all users. “We believe. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 10:10 AM ET

The IRS is done letting TurboTax easily steer you away from filing taxes for free

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Photo by Kimberly White/Getty Images for TurboTax Earlier this year, ProPublica published a report showing how Intuit, the company behind TurboTax, was misleading users into paying to file their taxes — something that’s supposed to be free in the first place for many. They, along with H&R Block, went so far as to keep the free versions from showing up in search engine results. This made it harder for users to find the free. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 9:40 AM ET

Here’s what I was thinking a decade ago, according to Google’s records

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge “Most people are posting pics of them from the begining [sic] of the decade in order to show how far they’ve progressed in life. If you find that boring, how about using Google’s servers to find out what you were EXACTLY THINKING 10 years ago?” That’s what a Reddit user suggested in r/LifeProTips earlier today — so I figured I’d give it a. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 9:10 AM ET

LG’s latest rollable TV descends from the ceiling like a projector screen

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - LG Display’s previous rollable TVs have all rolled upwards out of a box. The upcoming design will roll downwards from the ceiling. | Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge LG Display has a new version of its rollable TV to show off at CES 2020, the company has announced. This year’s model works a little differently to the prototypes the company has shown off for the past two years, however. Rather than unrolling upwards out of. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 8:40 AM ET

GE’s new smart switches and dimmers can be installed in almost any home

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - C by GE Hubless Smart Dimmer with motion detection | Image: GE Lighting GE Lighting is introducing new smart lighting switches and dimmers to its C by GE line of connected products that do not require the use of a neutral wire. This allows the C by GE Hubless Three-Wire Smart Switch and Hubless Dimmer models to be installed in many more homes than most smart switches, including homes built. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 8:10 AM ET

Announcing Processor, a newsletter about consumer tech by Dieter Bohn

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Hello and well met! You’re reading the first newsletter we’re calling Processor. It’s a newsletter about “computers,” but I am using that term in a winky way. What I mean is consumer technology: gadgets, tablets, computers, phones, software, and the companies that make the products we use every day. So Processor is about the computers that are all around us — on your wrist, on your wall, and yes, on your lap, too.. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 8:10 AM ET

Samsung’s Galaxy Book Flex Alpha aims to be a cheaper QLED 2-in-1 laptop

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Image: Samsung Last year, Samsung announced the Galaxy Book Ion and Galaxy Book Flex, a pair of new laptops that were designed to replace its Notebook 9 Pen and Notebook 9 models. Now, just ahead of CES 2020, the company is unveiling another new laptop: the Galaxy Book Flex α (pronounced “Alpha”), which is designed to bring some of the high-end features of those new Galaxy Book laptops to a cheaper. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 7:40 AM ET

Dell’s latest XPS 13 has a new design with a bigger display and Ice Lake chips

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Dell’s XPS 13 has long been one of the best Windows laptops around, and at CES 2020, the company is updating it yet again with a bigger 13.4-inch display that also shifts to a 16:10 aspect ratio. By adding the taller display, Dell has also completely cut out the bottom bezel to make the new XPS 13 look better than ever, too. Despite the larger display, the new XPS 13 is actually. [more...]

Jan 13, 2020 7:10 AM ET

Apple reunites with iPhone graphics chip partner to license technology

iCrowdNewswire - Jan 13, 2020 - Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Apple will once again license technology from Imagination Technologies, the chip designer that used to provide graphics processors for the iPhone and iPad, the UK-based company announced today. In a short statement posted on its website, Imagination said that it had entered into a multiyear license agreement with Apple, under which the Cupertino, California-based firm will have access to “a wider range of Imagination’s. [more...]