Scientists Create Glowing Plants Using Mushroom Genes

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: Emitting an eerie green glow, they look like foliage from a retro computer game, but in fact they are light-emitting plants produced in a laboratory. Researchers say the glowing greenery could not only add an unusual dimension to home decor but also open up a fresh way for scientists to explore …

Fairphone 3 Now Available With ‘de-Googled’ Android /e/OS

joestar writes: Fairphone, the European manufacturer of mobile phones with a reduced environmental impact, has announced a partnership to offer /e/OS, the most “de-Googled” and pro-privacy Android OS, on their latest model Fairphone 3. An interesting move that reminds me of the recent introduction of the Google-free Huawei Mate 30. A pithy explainer of its “privacy by design ecosystem” — …

Toshiba Publishes Full List of Its Drives Using Slower SMR Technology

“Toshiba has just published a full list of all the consumer HDDs in their lineup that use SMR (shingled magnetic recording) technology,” writes Slashdot reader williamyf. “This comes after the whole submarine consumer SMR HDDs fiasco, and fresh on the heels of Western Digital publishing a full list of all their consumer HDDs using SMR. With this, Seagate is the …

Google Is Killing Its Experimental Social Network Shoelace

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Engadget: Google’s experimental Area 120 unit launched Shoelace in mid-2019 as a way to help people get together in real life. Unfortunately, the fledgling social network won’t make it out of the experimental phase — the tech giant has announced that Shoelace is shutting down on May 12th. The service was geared towards …

Predictive Text Patent Troll Tries To Shake Down Wikipedia

martiniturbide writes: WordLogic (patent troll) claims it has the rights of the concept of predictive text writing and went after the Wikimedia foundation. WordLogic offered a “discounted, lump sum fee of $30,000 in exchange for a paid-up one-time license,” an easy win they thought, but Wikimedia fought back. “Wikimedia notes that (1) WordLogic’s patents are invalid due to prior art, …

Google Play has been spreading advanced Android malware for years

Enlarge (credit: portal gda / Flickr) Hackers have been using Google Play for years to distribute an unusually advanced backdoor capable of stealing a wide range of sensitive data, researchers said on Tuesday. Researchers from security firm Kaspersky Lab have recovered at least eight Google Play apps that date back to 2018, a Kaspersky Lab representative said, but based on …

Lyft To Lay Off 17 Percent of Staff As Uber Weighs Even Bigger Layoffs

Less than 24 hours after it was reported that Uber was considering layoffs of 20% of staff, its big rival Lyft said it would be reducing its staff by 17%, working out to 982 employees, and furloughing an additional 288, due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. TechCrunch reports: It also will put in place salary reductions of 30% …

Half of Americans Won’t Trust Contact-Tracing Apps, New Poll Finds

Before life can safely return to normalcy, we’ll need an enormous increase in our ability to perform contact tracing — identifying and contacting everyone who’s been in contact with a person infected with COVID-19 so that they in turn can hunker down in quarantine and avoid infecting others. But, as Ars Technica reports, there are two huge problems with the …

Facebook Apps Now Used Monthly By More Than 3 Billion People

Facebook today reported earnings for its first fiscal quarter of 2020, including revenue of $17.74 billion, and net income of $4.9 billion, compared to revenue of $15.1 billion, and net income of $2.43 billion billion in Q1 2019. Year-over-year revenue is up 17%. From a report: In a call with analysts after the close of markets today, Facebook CEO Mark …

Some School Districts Plan To End the Year Early, Call Remote Learning Too Tough

An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Wall Street Journal: Some districts are giving up on remote learning and ending the academic year early, after concluding that it was too cumbersome for teachers, students and parents. Washington, D.C., as well as parts of Georgia, Texas and elsewhere plan to end a week to several weeks early. Schools have struggled …