America is finally being exposed to the devastating reality of prison violence

America is finally being exposed to the devastating reality of prison violence

Recent reports show how overcrowding, understaffing, and limited resources are contributing to violence in prisons. In some US prisons, inmates are subjected to violence and inhumane conditions on a daily basis. This week, a new report and a lawsuit brought renewed attention to that fact. On Wednesday, the Department of Justice released a damning report on prisons in Alabama, showing that a combination of understaffing, overcrowding, and poor management led to the state’s prison system…

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‘Old Town Road’ proves TikTok can launch a hit song

‘Old Town Road’ proves TikTok can launch a hit song

Montero “Lil Nas X” Hill’s parents were concerned when their son dropped out of college eight months ago to pursue a career in rap; as the country trap star told Time Magazine, his parents succinctly pointed out there are millions of rappers already crowding the scene. Hill didn’t listen. He had to compete with up-and-coming rappers on streaming services like SoundCloud and Spotify, but Hill had a secret card up his sleeve — a meme…

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Former Senate staffer admits to doxxing five senators on Wikipedia

Former Senate staffer admits to doxxing five senators on Wikipedia

The man who edited Wikipedia with several senators’ private phone numbers and addresses has pleaded guilty to computer fraud and other offenses. Jackson Cosko, a former employee of Senator Maggie Hassan, was arrested last year on suspicion of doxxing five members of Congress. He’s now admitted to breaking into Hassan’s office after being fired, stealing data that included personal contact information, then posting that information online during Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing. Cosko…

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What brain-bending magic tricks can teach us about the mind

What brain-bending magic tricks can teach us about the mind

Pick a card, any card, and you might feel that you’re in control when you pull the queen of hearts from a magician’s deck. But magicians have strategies that force their audience’s choice — from packing the deck with identical cards, to fanning out the deck with just the right timing so that the choice becomes all but inevitable. This illusion of free will is one of the many illusions and magic tricks that Gustav…

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Ecobee appears to be quietly making its first video camera

Ecobee appears to be quietly making its first video camera

Maybe the company known for its smart thermostats isn’t just a smart thermostat company. In newly leaked photos obtained by Dave Zatz of Zatz Not Funny, Ecobee appears to be working on its first indoor video camera. The photos of the camera show a prominent, conical stand and four lights that flash yellow or blue. The shape of it looks vaguely like a smart speaker. The camera would actually be Ecobee’s second new product outside…

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5G is still just hype for AT&T and Verizon

5G is still just hype for AT&T and Verizon

AT&T and Verizon had big 5G-related announcements this week: AT&T published speed test results that seemingly validated its “5G E” LTE network as the fastest around, and Verizon launched its 5G network in parts of Chicago and Minneapolis. But both of these announcements underscore just how much of a mess 5G is right now. AT&T’s results appear to be skewed in the company’s favor, and Verizon’s rollout seems slapdash, with poor coverage even in the…

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The deadline for the UK’s “Brexit” from the European Union is looming

The deadline for the UK’s “Brexit” from the European Union is looming

The new Brexit deadline of April 12, 2019, is approaching — and British Prime Minister Theresa May has officially asked the European Union for yet another short Brexit delay, until June 30. This is the second time May has asked for a June 30 Brexit delay as she works toward a deal; she’s now trying to find a compromise with opposition Labour leaders. European Council President Donald Tusk has already offered a counterproposal to her…

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Westworld creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy have signed on with Amazon Studios

Westworld creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy have signed on with Amazon Studios

Amazon Studios has announced that it has signed on Westworld creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy and their company Kilter Films for an overall deal to create original series for Amazon Prime Video. The deal builds on an existing project the pair is developing for the studio called The Peripheral. That project is based on William Gibson’s novel by the same name, which is set between near-future rural America and a distant future in London…

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Hidden Google Play info on new ‘Pixel 3a’ phones suggests a ‘midyear’ release

Hidden Google Play info on new ‘Pixel 3a’ phones suggests a ‘midyear’ release

We’ve been hearing for months about the pair of Google’s new midrange Pixel 3 devices coming out this year, and now 9to5Google has unearthed even more information about the handsets that points, more than ever, to a summer release date. Thanks to the Google Play Console, the software that allows Android developers to manage apps submitted to the company’s mobile marketplace, 9to5Google was able to pull out two new device profiles for codenamed “bonito” and…

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