Technology

Good podcast vibes for the nerdy set: Our recent faves in science, research

Enlarge / Ars’ creative director Aurich Lawson describes this image as: “good vibes, friends, and listening to the reaches of space.” We like to think that fits well with our latest podcast recommendations. (credit: Aurich Lawson / Getty Images) In some ways, podcasts are among the most quarantine-proof forms of entertainment right now. Maybe some …

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Walmart employees are out to show its anti-shoplifting AI doesn’t work

Enlarge (credit: Roberto Machado Noa | Getty Images) In January, my coworker received a peculiar email. The message, which she forwarded to me, was from a handful of corporate Walmart employees calling themselves the “Concerned Home Office Associates.” (Walmart’s headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas, is often referred to as the Home Office.) While it’s not unusual …

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“The trampoline is working”—SpaceX returns human spaceflight to America

Falcon 9 lifts off on its most important mission to date: carrying NASA Astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley into orbit.. [credit: Trevor Mahlmann ] The rain showers ended. The clouds parted. And so on Saturday afternoon, SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket had blue skies above it during the final minutes of a countdown to launch …

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Dearth of women in classic Hollywood was result of studio system, study finds

Gone with the Wind—successfully sued Warner Bros. in 1943 to free herself from her studio contract. The groundbreaking lawsuit contributed to the breakup of the Hollywood studio system.”> Enlarge / Olivia de Havilland—pictured here as Melanie Hamliton in the 1939 Oscar-Winning film Gone with the Wind—successfully sued Warner Bros. in 1943 to free herself from …

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An advanced and unconventional hack is targeting industrial firms

Enlarge / Binary code, illustration. (credit: KTSDESIGN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY / Getty Images) Attackers are putting considerable skill and effort into penetrating industrial companies in multiple countries, with hacks that use multiple evasion mechanisms, an innovative encryption scheme, and exploits that are customized for each target with pinpoint accuracy. The attacks begin with emails that are …

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Today’s the day—weather permitting, America is returning to space

Stormclouds roll into NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on the evening of May 29, 2020, as xenon lights illuminate historic pad 39A. [credit: Trevor Mahlmann ] After nine years without a human launch from Florida, it’s about damn time, isn’t it? During Wednesday’s technically smooth countdown, NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken came within 17 …

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Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro mini-review: A vast improvement

The Magic Keyboard with a 12.9-inch 2020 iPad Pro. [credit: Samuel Axon ] The past year has brought big changes to the iPad. First, the branch from iOS to iPadOS—and some accompanying changes to the software—signaled an effort by Apple to make real productivity possible on the platform. Second, Apple introduced trackpad support, bringing a …

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