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FBI's Ocean's Elevenxa0;Ruse Went

On Friday, a federal judge ruled that FBI agents had gone too far last summer when they cut off the Internet service to Paul Phua’s Las Vegas hotel room, posed as repairmen, and entered the room without a search warrant.

According to NBC News, the FBI received a tip last July that Phua, a 50-year old Malaysian millionaire and world champion poker player, and his buddies were taking illegal bets on the World Cup inside his Caesar’s Palace suite. Agents wore hidden cameras into Phua’s room and say the footage in those cameras provides evidence of said illegal betting.

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Posted by on in Wired

The specs and specialties at the center of this year’s TV turf war are coming into crystal-clear focus. All the major manufacturers are pushing 4K front and center, but each of them is staking claim to their own little slice of the Ultra HD pie.

Samsung is hanging its hat on its own quantum-dot-like color technology. LG is cranking out OLEDs, and it’s also taking on quantum dot with its “ColorPrime” tech. Vizio continues to blast out affordable 4K sets with full-array local dimming. Now Sony is ready to hit stores with its early-2015 sets, and the company is focusing on razor-thin panels and HDR features.

Sony’s new flagship is the 75-inch XBR-75X940C, an $8,000 set that’s the only model kitted out with the company’s highest-end “X-Tended Dynamic Range PRO” contrast-enhancing feature. It’s a full-array 4K panel with local dimming, and Sony claims the extra contrast boost of the Dynamic Range PRO technology makes the LCD panel produce deeper, plasma-like blacks in addition to brighter bright areas. The company is claiming three times the brightness range—the delta between the darkest parts of a scene and the brightest—compared to your run-of-the-mill LED-backlit LCD set.

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End Date: Apr 29,2015 07:59 AM GMT-07:00
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Fixing this is simple. Just make misprosecution punishable on parity with the charges being prosecuted.

Willfully hide exculpatory evidence in a capital murder trial? Death penalty.

Lie about evidence in a life imprisonment case? Life in prison.

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Review

Aspiring musicians looking to learn to play guitar with the aid of lessons on their iPad, iPhone or Mac should check out the Zivix Jamstik, a small, convenient and unique MIDI controller that uses technology to offset the learning curve associated with learning an instrument.

Jamstik, a 5-fret guitar-like instrument / MIDI controller.image

Jamstik, a 5-fret guitar-like instrument / MIDI controller.

In the past, learning to play the guitar usually involved going to a music shop and learning from a professional teacher. This is still a solid means of learning, but digital music lessons have increasingly become the norm.

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We’ve got clones, they're multiplying, and Sarah Manning is losing control.

In the Season 3 premiere of Orphan Black, the male clones slowly but surely started taking over, but they’ve only affected one of the sisters so far.

Surprisingly, their creepy and bloody antics weren’t the craziest part of the season opener — it was all of the body-swapping that went down at the DYAD Institute. In order to keep a "cleaner" named Ferdinand (True Blood alum James Frain) from sounding an alarm, Sarah had to pose as Rachel and Alison had to pretend to be Sarah. It was supposed to be a quick wolf in sheep's clothing act, but Sarah uncovered much more than she bargained for in the process.

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Tulips on the White House lawn

If you've been wondering how Russian cyberattackers could compromise the White House and other high-profile targets, the security researchers at FireEye have an answer. They've determined that APT28, a politically-motivated Russian hacking group, used unpatched exploits in Flash Player and Windows in a series of assaults against the US government on April 13th. Patches for both flaws are either ready or on the way, but the vulnerabilities reinforce beliefs that APT28 is very skilled -- less experienced groups would use off-the-shelf code.

Whether or not APT28 is linked to the earlier White House breach isn't apparent. FireEye says it can't comment on the connections, since that's classified information. If there is a link, though, it'll be clearer than ever that the US is up against a particularly fierce digital espionage campaign.

[Image credit: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images]

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Posted by on in TechCrunch
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Editor’s note: Joe McCann is a co-founder and CEO of NodeSource. He is a hacker, tinkerer, builder and breaker with more than 13 years of web, mobile and software development experience.

We’ve been living in a bundled world. ESPN packaged with Nickelodeon, healthcare tied to employers, learning wrapped up in colleges and degree programs. We’ve grown up surrounded by so many bundled products and services that it’s easy to become blind to the flexibility and value presented by unbundling.

Bundling can occur for a couple of reasons. One scenario is when companies try to force consumers to buy something they don’t really want by packaging it with something they do — like albums that only contain one good song. But bundling can make sense when transaction costs for individual products or services (monetary or otherwise) are too high to justify buying those products separately.

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While some may decry Chromebooks, claiming they have limited uses, we know that there’s more to it than that. For a very affordable price, you can get a lot of functionality from a Chromebook, and when you combine that with long battery life and portability, you have a winning combination.

We’ve compiled a list of our favorite Chromebooks, systems that combine great battery life, comfortable keyboards, and the performance it takes to run the lightweight Chrome OS. No matter which system you go with, make sure to upgrade to 4GB of RAM. You’ll thank us when you’ve got 11 tabs open.

The Best

Dell Chromebook 11 ($380)

DellChromebook11

The Dell Chromebook 11 checks off almost every box for what you want out of a Chrome OS device. The keyboard is responsive and comfortable, it looks sleek and professional, and Chrome OS runs buttery smooth. When it comes to performance, the version with an Intel i3 CPU and 4GB of RAM smashes the expectations of what a Chromebook can do, and doesn’t break a sweat even when you throw a ton of tabs at it. The battery life doesn’t suffer as a result, boasting one of the longest quoted use times in its class. The only real downside is the screen, which only has a resolution of 1366×768, but it’s more than enough for most of what you’ll use Chrome OS for.

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Posted by on in Lifehacker

This Week's Top Downloads

Every week, we share a number of downloads for all platforms to help you get things done. Here were the top downloads from this week.

This Week's Top Downloads

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Sony Hack Reveals Intent to Acquire Super Smash Bros. Film Rights

Included in the deluge of Sony executive emails, memos, PDFs and presentations released on WikiLeaks earlier this week is one little nugget that will warm your inner child’s heart: Sony may be trying to nab film rights to the Super Smash Bros. series.

On Thursday, WikiLeaks unveiled a new portal for the entire archive of leaked materials from the 2014 Sony hack, many of which, WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange claims, are “newsworthy and at the center of a geopolitical conflict.” While the rumor of a Super Smash Bros. movie probably doesn’t rank high on the list of geopolitically-important fallout for the multinational corporation, it ranks pretty high on my personal list of rumored movies that really need to happen right now.

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Posted by on in CNET

The spring issue is here

Find out what Sofia Vergara wants from her modern smart home. Get your copy today for big savings off newsstand prices.

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Posted by on in RE/Code

They say that people are nastier on the Internet than they would ever be in person — but it appears that the comments section of any gadget site came to life this week, when police were reportedly called to the bloody apartment of a pair of Tulsa roommates who had broken beer bottles and stabbed each other with them in a drunken fight about the merits of iPhone or Android. It’s unclear whether one side won or lost the argument, except for humanity.

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A standard evil villain to invoke here at Techdirt is "copyright maximalists", which implies existence of both minimalists and moderates. Minimalists and pirates don't comment here, right? Should be plenty of moderates. I might even identify myself as one, if a definition could be agreed on.

Spare me all diversionary complaint as for "loaded" terms used below: it's axiomatic that "copyright minimalists" will object to ANY balanced view. You'll only be stating that are no moderates here. -- And skip history "lessons": just deal with TODAY.

In my view, to be regarded as a "copyright moderate", one must stake out a position. If won't state a position, then you are RIGHTLY characterized as a moral-less pirate.

I've long stated is much bad to evil in practices of corporations and individuals using statute for monetary gain and censorship. I'm actually way out in front of most for wishing to hang lawyers and tax the hell out of the rich. Stop saying I'm a "maximalist" for corporations, you "moderates". It's a lie.

Now YOU go positive. Yes, it's a trap. Not stating is too...

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The typical, consumer-grade 3D printer creates objects made of thin layers of stiff, brittle plastic fused together. Of course, hard plastic isn’t ideal for all projects, so that’s why researchers from Disney, Cornell University, and Carnegie Mellon Univeristy have developed a new 3D-printing technique that creates objects out of layers of felt.

Disney’s fabric 3D printing method starts by taking a 3D model of an object, and “slicing” into printable layers—a typical part of the 3D printing process. Next, the printer laser-cuts shapes out of adhesive fabric that correspond to the sliced layers, then transfers that layer onto the printer’s build platform. It then applies heat to each layer to “activate” the fabric’s adhesive. 

The printer repeats this process to cut, stack, and adhere each layer until it completes the model. TechCrunch characterizes the printer as being “as much a laser cutter as it is a 3D printer.” The output is a bit rough, but it’s an impressive process nonetheless.

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Yesterday, Oklahoma governor Mary Fallin signed into law a bill that approves the use of nitrogen gas for executions in the state. The method, which would effectively asphyxiate death row inmates by forcing them to breathe pure nitrogen through a gas mask, is meant to be the primary alternative to lethal injection, The Washington Post reports.

The primary method is still lethal injection

Fallin and other supporters of the procedure say it's pain-free and effective, noting that the nitrogen would render inmates unconscious within ten seconds and kill them in minutes. It's also cheap: state representatives say the method only requires a nitrogen tank and a gas mask, but financial analysts say its impossible to give precise figures, the Post reports.

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This is more confirmation, but it has already been known in the microbiology community for some time.

Many of the genes that contribute to antibiotic resistance are far older than human use of antibiotics.

How can that be? A couple ways. Mom Nature has been playing the antibiotic game for a very long time. Most of our antibiotics come from antibiotic producing organisms in nature (penicillin for example). The countermeasures have long been out there, but only in a small percentage of the bacteria out there, s

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Cyrus Farivar

Further Reading

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A federal judge issued a stern rebuke Friday to the Federal Bureau of Investigation's method for breaking up an illegal online betting ring. The Las Vegas court frowned on the FBI's ruse of disconnecting Internet access to $25,000-per-night villas at Caesar's Palace Hotel and Casino. FBI agents posed as the cable guy and secretly searched the premises.

The government claimed the search was legal because the suspects invited the agents into the room to fix the Internet. US District Judge Andrew P. Gordon wasn't buying it. He ruled that if the government could get away with such tactics like those they used to nab gambling kingpin Paul Phua and some of his associates, then the government would have carte blanche power to search just about any property.

"Permitting the government to create the need for the occupant to invite a third party into his or her home would effectively allow the government to conduct warrantless searches of the vast majority of residents and hotel rooms in America," Gordon wrote in throwing out evidence the agents collected. "Authorities would need only to disrupt phone, Internet, cable, or other 'non-essential' service and then pose as technicians to gain warrantless entry to the vast majority of homes, hotel rooms, and similarly protected premises across America."

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