Japan, US look to cut off North Korea’s oil supply

Allies reach for last economic resort after missile launch raises threat level

TOKYO — The U.S. and Japan will call for an international embargo on oil exports to North Korea in response to Tuesday’s launch of a ballistic missile over Japan, as the allies seek to strike at the lifeblood of Pyongyang’s weapons programs.

The ban will be proposed at an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council to be held in New York on Tuesday at the request of Japan, the U.S. and South Korea.

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Amazon and Microsoft agree their voice assistants will talk (to each other)

Those betting big on AI making voice the dominant user interface of the future are not betting so big as to believe their respective artificially intelligent voice assistants will be the sole vocal oracle that Internet users want or need.

And so Microsoft’s Satya Nadella and Amazon’s Jeff Bezos are today announcing a tie-up, which will — at an unspecified point later this year — enable users of the latter’s Alexa voice assistant to ask her to summon Microsoft’s Cortana voice assistant to ask it to do stuff, and vice versa. Continue reading “Amazon and Microsoft agree their voice assistants will talk (to each other)”

Does Microsoft’s brass still believe it has a chance in the phone market?

With one of Microsoft’s most celebrated Windows Phone customers, the NYPD, expected to dump their devices for iPhones, is there really even a toehold for Microsoft in the business-phone space?

A New York Post report — that one of Microsoft’s more celebrated US business customers for Windows Phones is dumping the platform — raises some interesting questions about Redmond’s future mobility plans.

The Post reported on Aug. 28 that the New York Police Department (NYPD) is going to scrap the 36,000 Nokia phones running the Windows Phone OS, which it has been rolling out for the past two years.

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SpaceX’s Hyperloop Pod speed competition winner tops 200 MPH

SpaceX held its second Hyperloop Pod design competition for student teams at the test track built near its headquarters today. The mile-long track saw three finalist teams battle it out for speed supremacy, including WARR Hyperloop from Germany, Switzerland’s Swissloop and Paradigm, a North American team with members from Northeastern and Memorial University in Newfoundland, Canada.

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NASA’s $3.5 billion plan could keep Yellowstone from ever erupting again

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Yellowstone national park is famous for its hot springs, geysers, and picturesque vistas. However, it’s the supervolcano lurking under Yellowstone that we have to thank for all of that. An eruption in Yellowstone could be a global cataclysm, but NASA has a plan to reduce the risk while also generating power. The plan is not without risks, and the price tag is high. Still, if it keeps us from being wiped out by clouds of hot ash, it might be something to consider.

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Garmin Fenix 5, first take: A heavyweight sports watch with a matching price tag

The Garmin Fenix 5 is a fitness and outdoor watch that’s not for the faint-hearted.

It’s packed with features, and can deliver very detailed information for those who like to monitor their activities in minute detail.

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Samsung’s bad software update bricks smart TVs

Customers are angry over Samsung’s bad update followed by terrible communications.

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Samsung smart TV customers are complaining that a software update has rendered their TVs unusable.

Exasperated customers are also furious at the lack of support and poor communication from Samsung after the bad update rolled-out last Thursday.

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Russia’s propaganda machine amplifies alt-right

Russia’s propaganda machine amplifies alt-right

Russia’s army of media influencers, social media bots and trolls has increasingly amplified alt-right and far-right narratives in the United States since the 2016 presidential election.

Russia’s efforts to push propaganda and disinformation, experts say, are nothing new and extend beyond the U.S. to nations in Europe. But they have seemed to evolve in recent months, increasingly infiltrating and engaging with alt-right and far-right Americans online.

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Ukraine’s President Says It Again: Country Will Absolutely Join NATO, Fight Russia

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (R) and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg give a press conference after their talks in Kiev on July 10, 2017. Russia…has nothing to worry about.

And another one bites the dust.

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Trump aide’s email reportedly detailed offer for campaign to meet with Russia

Donald Trump made it clear at the beginning of his campaign that he wasn’t going to follow the normal rules or tone of politics. We’re keeping track of all the ways his presidency veers from the norm in terms of policy and rhetoric.

President Donald Trump’s current deputy chief of staff sent an email referencing an effort to get Trump campaign officials and Russian President Vladimir Putin together for a meeting in what appears to be yet more evidence of Russia’s attempts to ingratiate itself with the Trump campaign, CNN reported Wednesday.

Rick Dearborn, who sent the email, had not been previously publicly linked to the federal investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Sources with “direct knowledge of the matter” tell CNN that someone identified only as “WV” in Dearborn’s email wanted to set up the meeting between Putin and the Trump campaign.

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