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TLDR Daily Update 2020-03-24
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Big Tech & Startups
Stories about tech giants, startups, and venture capital
As everybody goes into lockdown, Hollywood is preparing to release movies to stream on the home market months earlier than planned. Some movies will be released to stream on the same day as their planned theatrical releases. These movies will be released to services such as Amazon, Apple, Fandango, Google Play, Vudu, and YouTube. They will be available to rent for 48 hours.
Microsoft has warned users that attackers are actively exploiting a Windows zero-day vulnerability that can execute malicious code on fully updated systems. The security flaw exists in the Adobe Type Manager Library, consisting of two code-execution flaws that can be triggered by the improper handling of maliciously crafted fonts. Until a patch is available, Microsoft recommends that users disable the Preview Pane and Details Pane in Windows Explorer, disable the WebClient service, and rename ATMFD.DLL or disable it from the registry. Users should also be wary of suspicious requests to view untrusted documents and install a patch once it becomes available.
Science & Cutting Edge Technology
Stories about scientific breakthroughs and futuristic technologies like AI, blockchain, and space travel
Doctors at the Beilinson Hospital in Israel have performed an operation where a man's lung was removed, cleaned of cancerous tumors, and then placed back into the body. The patient, in his mid-40s, was hospitalized after a tumor in his left lung blocked the main artery, leading to its collapse. Using the patient's own lung means that the patient doesn't need to wait for a lung transplant or have to deal with the effects of chemotherapy. During the surgery, the man was able to breathe out of his good lung while the other was disconnected. The method can potentially be applied to other organs and other forms of cancer.
SpaceX has received approval from the Federal Communications Commission to deploy up to 1 million Starlink user terminals in the United States. It applied for the license in early 2019, and the license is now valid for 15 years. SpaceX's user terminals will look like a UFO on a stick and will be able to self-orientate. The design of the terminals is simple. Users will only need to point it to the sky and plug it in for the device to work. The Starlink network currently consists of 362 satellites. SpaceX plans to grow the network, so it will likely apply for a license for more terminals in the future.
Programming, Design & Data Science
Tools, open source, and other resources for programmers, designers, and data scientists
Google launched its Stadia Makers program at the virtual Google Games Developer Summit. The program targets experienced independent game developers and is done in partnership with Unity. It provides technical assistance from Unity, free development hardware, and funding. A link to apply for the Stadia Makers program is available at the end of the article.
Piranha is an open-source tool developed by Uber that can automatically remove old code. Removing old code can be time-intensive for engineers, preventing them from working on new features. Uber uses Piranha to remove features by identifying code related to feature flags once they become obsolete. It is currently implemented for Objective-C, Swift, and Java programs.
Random stuff techies might be interested in
A member of the International Olympic Committee has announced that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games have been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. It is likely that the games will be moved to 2021. The IOC is expected to announce its next steps in the next four weeks. While the IOC hasn't officially announced the delay yet, it has ruled out canceling the games completely. Many countries have recently made statements about withdrawing from the games if they were held during the pandemic. This will be the first time the Olympics has been suspended, even though the games have been canceled before in times of war.
Many people have chosen to stay at home in order to quell the coronavirus outbreak, leaving many cities seeming empty and abandoned. This page features video footage shot from drones showing cities around the world in their current empty state. It features many locations and shows many popular tourist destinations completely empty of people.
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