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Dinosaur Footprints From 183 Million Years Ago Discovered in What Was Once a 'Land of Fire'
The footprints are dated to a time when a major mass extinction event devastated life on Earth.
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WHO will reconvene to decide if coronavirus is global emergency
GENEVA – The World Health Organization’s Emergency Committee will meet on Thursday, the third time in a week, to evaluate whether the new coronavirus spreading from China now constitutes an international emergency, the WHO said. “The Committee will advise the Director-General on whether the outbreak constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) and...
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Donald Trump security officials threaten to block publication of John Bolton's book
Manuscript of John Bolton's book "appears to contain significant amounts of classified information," a National Security Council letter said.
Coronavirus disrupts international sports events throughout China
The coronavirus outbreak is forcing sports officials to cancel or postpone a string of major events scheduled throughout China in the next few weeks.
House readies vote to repeal Iraq war authorization
Lawmakers in the House are set to vote on Thursday to repeal the 2002 authorization for the use of military force in Iraq and to block funds from being used to wage war with Iran, in an effort to curtail President Donald Trump's military actions in light of heightened tensions with Iran.
Alicia Keys opens up about hosting the Grammys hours after learning of Kobe Bryant's death
Alicia Keys opened up about how she reacted to learning Kobe Bryant had died just hours before hosting the Grammy Awards.
Christmas-themed hazing linked to death of Cornell freshman: lawsuit
Antonio Tsialas, 18, was in a group of six freshman pledges at a “Christmas in October” rush event where they binge drank a wide array of booze and were submerged upside down in trashcans full of water at the Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity, according to the suit filed late Tuesday.
Palestinian PM: Trump is proposing an apartheid system
President Trump's newly unveiled Middle East plan proposes "no more than an apartheid system," Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh tells CNN's Christiane Amanpour.
What's streaming on Netflix, Hulu and Amazon in February
Whether you want to Netflix and chill, Hulu and hug it out or Amazon and be amorous, there's plenty of streaming content for your to fall in love with this month.
Chris Stapleton is headed to a city near you
Chris Stapleton is gearing up for a busy 2020.
NSC warned Bolton not to publish manuscript, citing classified info
The Senate is weighing whether to have the former national security adviser testify in the impeachment trial.
The Humbling of Texas Democrats
Democrats always knew it was going to be hard to turn Texas blue in 2020. This week, they received a painful reminder of just how tough it’ll be.Republicans last night swamped Democrats in what one progressive group had hyped as “the most important special election since the midterms,” winning by 16 points a key state legislative race that both parties had viewed as a test run for the much bigger campaign this fall. The defeat, and particularly the wide margin, was a setback for Democrats who had poured nearly $1 million into the election.It also signaled the reinvigoration of the Texas GOP. Republicans had been caught napping in 2016 and 2018, giving Democrats hope that they could put the country’s largest GOP stronghold in play this year.But the party came back to life in this race, well exceeding the Democrats’ substantial investment. Texas Governor Greg Abbott and other top Republicans threw their support behind GOP candidate Gary Gates, who spent more than $1.5 million of his own money in the campaign. The millions spent in total were a whopping sum for an election decided by just 30,000 people—a turnout of 20 percent—to fill just one out of 150 seats in the Texas state House.After cutting into the margins of the Republican majority in the chamber in 2018, Democrats need to flip just nine seats to win control this fall and loosen the GOP’s long-held grip on the state government. They had hoped to get a head start on that bid by nabbing this open GOP seat.“Democrats were convinced they could buy Texas. But tonight they learned Texans aren’t buying the nonsense the Democrats are selling,” said Austin Chambers, the president of the Republican State Leadership Committee, the national-party group dedicated to state legislative races. “Texans sent a message loud and clear to the liberals in Washington: ‘We’re going to keep Texas, Texas.’”Read: [Something’s happening in Texas]The seemingly small stakes of a local campaign in the Houston suburbs had nevertheless captured the attention of the Democratic Party’s top presidential candidates, who used the race to demonstrate their commitment to the Democrats’ broader goal of recapturing power in the states and making Texas truly competitive in 2020. Democratic candidate Eliz Markowitz won endorsements from Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, and Michael Bloomberg. Former Representative Beto O’Rourke, who nearly carried the district in his close Senate race in 2018, campaigned aggressively for Markowitz after dropping his own White House bid in the fall. Yet she not only failed to match O’Rourke’s performance two years ago against Senator Ted Cruz, she fell short of the 43 percent of the vote that Hillary Clinton earned in the district in 2016.In the aftermath of last night’s election, both parties observed the unwritten rules of analyzing special-election results. To the party that won, the victory was a clear harbinger of bigger success to come. To the party that lost, the results meant absolutely nothing at all.“We always knew the race would be tough,” Jessica Post, the executive director of the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, told me this morning. She called the 16-point margin “an anomaly,” noting the unpredictability of low-turnout special elections. Post also blamed Texas Republicans for scheduling the election in the dead of winter and limiting early-voting periods.She said Democrats had forced Republicans to spend millions and devote the full resources of their party to defend a district that as recently as 2012 went for Mitt Romney by 30 points. “I think that’s a win,” Post argued. “I think it shows Republicans are scared as hell.”OtherDemocratic operatives I spoke with this morning conceded it was a stretch to call Texas a winnable state for the party’s eventual presidential nominee in 2020. (These dampened expectations are a contrast to the hype that built up after 2016, when the nine-point gap between Trump and Clinton in Texas was smaller than it was in Iowa and barely larger than in Ohio.) But they said last night’s special election defeat did not dim their hopes for winning a majority in the state House. There are, they noted, 15 districts more favorable to Democrats than the one they lost last night. And especially in suburban districts where voters have soured on President Donald Trump, Democrats expect the higher turnout in November to boost their chances. “Not having Trump on the ballot really hurt [Markowitz],” said one Democratic operative with Texas ties, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the raced candidly. The Texas legislature is high on the Democrats’ target list for 2020, when victories in state races will carry added gravity heading into the next round of redistricting.It may have taken a lot of money, but ultimately Republicans swamped Democrats with higher turnout, particularly among their stronger coalition of voters who morereliably show up at the polls. “This was a base versus base election, and Republicans were able to mobilize their base to turn out in huge numbers,” Post told me.In 2018, O’Rourke’s near-upset of Senator Ted Cruz was a wake-up call for Texas Republicans. In their first 2020 test on Tuesday, they answered it.
WHO lauds Chinese response to virus, says world 'at important juncture'
The World Health Organization (WHO) praised China on Wednesday for its efforts to tackle the coronavirus outbreak, but voiced "grave concern" about person-to-person spread in three other countries which led it to summon its Emergency Committee again.
Shaq’s Super Bowl bash still on following Kobe Bryant’s death
"Kobe would want us to push through and celebrate life. So let's do just that."
Trump signs new trade deal with Mexico and Canada
President Donald Trump signed the new USMCA trade agreement Wednesday, a major rewrite of the trade rules with Canada and Mexico. (Jan. 29)
Global box office could take multibillion-dollar hit from coronavirus outbreak
The outbreak that has claimed more than 100 lives reportedly led film exhibitors to shut down about 70,000 screens in China, which helped power last year's record-breaking global movie grosses.
Citing Trump plan, Israel defense chief backs extending sovereignty to West Bank settlements
Israel's hawkish defense minister called on Wednesday for Israel to establish sovereignty over nearly a third of the occupied West Bank, acting on U.S. President Donald Trump's announcement of a Middle East peace plan that Palestinians branded apartheid.
Pandering and Parenting for the Queer World
It’s tough to get representation right.
White House warned Bolton’s lawyer against publishing book
The NSC said its review of the forthcoming memoir contained “significant amounts of classified information.”
Oregon teacher arrested after confronting sex assault victim at restaurant
An Oregon teacher was arrested for cursing out a sexual assault victim when she recognized her at a restaurant, police said.
Parnas in DC to show support for 'fair trial'
An associate of Rudy Giuliani who is awaiting trial on charges that he made illegal campaign contributions arrived in Washington and said he wants to support "a fair trial" in the Senate's impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. (Jan. 29)
Lower Merion HS teammate learned of Kobe Bryant’s competitiveness the hard way
Dan Pangrazio lay on the court, his elbow bleeding badly enough that three stitches were needed to close the gash. He had been deposited there by a teammate as they battled for the ball on the final go-around of a rebounding drill/game his coach used to instill toughness. The sides were tied and he was...
Breaking down the impeachment Q&A
Senators are using their first chance to ask questions in a bid to poke holes in their opponents' arguments.
How the North American trade deal will affect autos, digital trade, drugs
The U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement (USMCA) signed by President Donald Trump on Wednesday modernizes the 26-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement, which has been blamed for hollowing out the U.S. manufacturing sector.
Super Bowl: Father-son coaches, the Embrees, are assistants for the 49ers and Chiefs
Super Bowl LIV is also Embree Bowl I. Father Jon and son Taylor coach for the 49ers. Son/brother Connor coaches for the Chiefs.
Revelan que al helicóptero de Kobe Bryant le faltaba un sistema de alerta
La aeronave chocó con una montaña durante horas de la madrugada del domingo
Fire chief: Our priorities right now are medical
Several people have been hurt in a fire at a high-rise residential building in Los Angeles, according to a city fire department spokesman and video from the scene.
Body cam records rescue of woman in Michigan
A deputy sheriff's body camera recorded the dramatic rescue of a woman who fell through the ice on a Michigan lake. (Jan. 29)
Gays in Hungary facing increased government ‘attacks,’ activists warn
Activists cite several recent homophobic attacks that they claim police have failed to investigate fully.
U.S. Military Invests In New Weapon to Defeat Hypersonic Missiles As Russia Upgrades Its Arsenal
The Pentagon awarded Northrop Grumman $13 million to build a glider that could take out weapons flying more than five times the speed of sound as Russia's Panstir surface-to-air system got a hypersonic missile.
Morocco 'appreciates' Mideast peace plan, says needs acceptance by parties
Morocco 'appreciates' the new U.S. plan for peace between Israel and the Palestinians, its foreign ministry said in a statement on Wednesday, but added that "acceptance by the parties... is... fundamental to the implementation and sustainability of the plan."
Nigel Farage: Populism is Just Beginning | Opinion
As Brexit finally becomes reality, I foresee four more years of the Trump administration—and the triumph of populism over globalism, everywhere.
EU Parliament Overwhelmingly Approves Brexit Departure Terms 621-49
The vote was 621 to 49 in favor of the deal
Joe Amabile and Kendall Long of ‘Bachelor in Paradise’ split
Cleanup in aisle five. “Grocery store” Joe Amabile and Kendall Long from 2018’s “Bachelor in Paradise” have broken up. “We have decided mutually to go our separate ways. Joe has made the decision to move back to Chicago while Kendall will be remaining in her hometown of Los Angeles,” the former couple said, in a...
This cabin rental service is a game-changer for those who love nature
Getaway makes it easy to disconnect.
The Trump Economy is looking a lot like the Obama Recovery
The Trump Economy is looking a lot like the Obama Recovery.
Georgia Rep. Doug Collins Announces U.S. Senate Run
The move by the GOP congressman, which sets up a challenge to a sitting Republican senator, Kelly Loeffler, was blasted by the National Republican Senatorial Committee as selfish.
Cubs’ Kris Bryant trade sweepstakes just got a lot more intriguing
Kris Bryant is in his prime. He is 28. He is the Cubs’ only NL MVP of the past two decades. He recorded the most important out in the history of the franchise, ending the Cubs’ 108-year championship drought. And he just became even more valuable to the only major league team he’s ever played...
How to delete what Facebook knows about your private life
Forget me now. Facebook hoards much more personal data than many users realize, but now there’s a tool to make the social-media giant remove your name from the data it’s learned about you — and stop learning. “Off-Facebook Activity” shows users just how much of their online movement is being monitored by the network. Launched...
Finnish Eurosceptic: Brexit Is a Victory of the Common People over the Elite
A Finnish Eurosceptic MEP has said that the UK will "triumph" outside of the EU and said the next decade will see the revival of national sovereignty in Europe.
Warren Buffett ending his bet on local news biz
Lee Enterprises is borrowing $576 million from Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway to finance the deal.
Los Angeles high-rise building catches fire
A massive blaze erupted in a Los Angeles high-rise building Wednesday morning — forcing residents to jump from the structure as heavy smoke and flames billowed, authorities said. The fire broke out on the sixth floor of a 25-story residential high-rise, known as Barrington Plaza, just after 8:30 a.m. local time, according to fire officials...
Bats, the source of so many viruses, could be the origin of Wuhan coronavirus, say experts
Scientists have claimed that a type of snake may be the original source of the Wuhan coronavirus. However, many infectious disease experts say the ultimate culprit is more likely to be the bat.
Why you see online ads for stuff you buy in the real world
Shoppers purchase items at Toys R Us store in New York City on December 24, 2015. | Kena Betancur/Getty Images Facebook isn’t following you around the mall, but the stores might be. Stop me if you’ve heard this before: You go to a store, browse its wares, consider or even make a purchase, and then go home, only to find a bunch of ads from that very store — perhaps of the very item you bought — following you around the internet. Or maybe you have several emails from that store filling your inbox, urging you to buy more stuff. How did your offline shopping habits make it into your online life? Well, it turns out those brick-and-mortar stores are getting as good at tracking you as their online rivals. And it all starts with your phone. Through your mobile device that you have on you at all times, including as you walk past or through a store, businesses can potentially see which of their products you prefer, which websites you visit, demographic information like your gender and age, your location, and much more — and they have the ability to do some of these things without asking for your consent or telling you what they’re doing it at all. Here’s what you should know before you download a store’s app or log on to the free wifi offered at the mall. What you’re really opting in to when you use free wifi and stores’ mobile apps These days, many retailers offer free in-store wifi and shopping apps. Free wifi can be a convenient way to access the internet without using your cell phone’s data; depending on your carrier and plan, you may be preserving a precious resource. And mobile apps often offer users exclusive deals on a business’ products or allow them to order items before they set foot in a store. But you might not be aware of what you might be giving away when you take advantage of these services: by using them, you have also opted into what’s called “active tracking.” You usually can only access in-store wifi through a “captive portal,” which is a page that pops up when you first try to connect. Usually, it asks you to submit personal information, like an email address, and then to agree to terms and conditions before letting you access the internet. The thing is, when you log into wifi through a business’s captive portal, you aren’t just giving the business whatever personal information you submitted at the portal page. You’re also attaching that information to a set of data the store collects from you, and you’re granting the store permission to use that data in ways you may not realize. (And if you used a social media profile like Facebook to log into the service, you may have given the business everything from your full name to your employer.) For instance, your wifi connection can give stores location information as specific as how much time you spent staring longingly at those shoes you can’t afford before giving up and heading for the clearance rack. Stores will know which websites you browsed while you were connected to their service, and they can install cookies on your browser to track you around the internet long after you’ve left the store. “They can see which sites you’re connecting to and when, and use that information to build a profile about your behavior,” Bennett Cyphers, a technologist for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, told Recode. “Browsing history can be used to guess at demographics — age, income, race, religion, political leaning. … This data can be used to target ads or sold to data brokers [or] combined with other data streams.” Robert Alexander/Getty Images People use their smartphones as they wait in line for a Uniqlo clothing store to open on Fifth Avenue in New York City on September 22, 2017. Your offline activities in a store are important, too: Retailers can send that data to services like LiveRamp to match it with your online identity, allowing retailers to place ads for those shoes that you couldn’t afford all over the internet. If you’re using a business’s mobile app, you’re giving it even more information. Target’s app encourages users to provide personal information about themselves, make shopping lists, scan item barcodes to see if there are any deals available, and redeem those deals by scanning the app’s barcode at the register. Macy’s app lets you upload a photo of your face to “try on” beauty products. H&M’s app lets you upload photos of clothing you like and then matches them with similar H&M offerings. But these apps may also be tracking you in less obvious ways. As the New York Times noted last June, many retailers deploy Bluetooth “beacons” throughout stores. If you have the store’s app installed on your device, the beacons send it signals. The app then knows where in the store you are and sends you information (like coupons or store maps) specific to that location. But this also means the app can track your movements as you pass by the beacons. Depending on where and how the beacons are placed, your location can be measured in inches. Some device manufacturers have wised up to this practice; for instance, the iPhone’s newest operating system requires apps to get your permission to use Bluetooth. This is all used to give businesses precise insights into their customers and to make it easier to market to them, both individually and in aggregate. It helps put brick-and-mortar businesses on a level playing field with their e-commerce rivals. And it may also help you, the customer. Not only do you get the free wifi or the convenience of a mobile app, but you may also get coupons or notifications about sales on products you’re more likely to want. Maybe now you can afford those shoes after all. “What companies like ours do is really allow brick-and-mortar venues to have the type of digital analytics that any online retailer, any website, has access to today,” Elizabeth Weddle, director of marketing for GoZone Wifi, a provider of captive portal and retail analytics services, told Recode. You may have never heard about this kind of tracking before, but it’s not exactly a secret: Portals and apps typically have privacy policies that state what data they collect and what they do with that information. Some are more explicit than others. (For instance, H&M simply says that “non-personal data is used as [personal data] and in other ways as permitted by applicable laws, including combining non-personal data with personal data.”) But standing in the middle of the mall staring at tiny print on your phone before you log on to wifi probably isn’t something you, or anyone else, would bother to do. That’s why we’re breaking it down for you. Passive tracking: Watching you whether you like it or not So, if you don’t want businesses to get to know you, you can just not sign up for their free wifi and not download their mobile apps, right? Wrong. Retailers also use wifi and Bluetooth sensors to track your mobile device (and, therefore, whoever is in possession of it: you) without you ever having signed in or asking for your permission to do so. This is called “passive tracking.” Your device constantly sends out signals to detect wifi and Bluetooth connections around it. This is a good thing when you’re trying to connect to your wireless headphones or home router. But stores can install sensors that detect those signals and provide some basic information back to the store about your device. Anything that connects to the internet has a Media Access Control (MAC) address, which is essentially a serial number unique to the device that can’t be changed. Store sensors, depending on where they are, can pick up your MAC address and use that to track your device’s location and movements. Because the MAC address is connected to your device but not, directly, to you, it’s considered “non-personally identifiable information.” That said, it is possible to match a device’s MAC address with its owner’s identity by cross-matching it with information from other sources like data brokers. This information is a lot more personal than it might seem at first glance. “It’s kind of like saying your driver’s license number isn’t necessarily personal information because it doesn’t refer to you by name,” Ashkan Soltani, a former Federal Trade Commission chief technologist who also worked on California’s upcoming Consumer Privacy Act, told Recode. “It’s robust enough to actually identify you.” Most likely, the business isn’t doing this to spy on you, the individual. Passive tracking is about getting aggregate data, like which areas of the store are more popular than others, the busiest times of day in a location, or even how many people pass by the store without stepping inside. (Yes, you don’t even have to be a customer for a store to track you; you just have to be in range of one of its sensors.) And, again, online stores behave similarly. It just might feel more invasive when your movements in the physical world are being tracked through a device in your pocket. “If you knew someone was following you around from each store that you go to — just a random person following you around and recording what stores you go to — most people would be creeped out,” Soltani said. Spencer Platt/Getty Images Visitors walk through the luxury shopping mall at the Hudson Yards development on the West Side of Midtown Manhattan on March 18, 2019, in New York City. Tracking your MAC address is also a way that stores can continue to actively track someone who opted into their wifi service even after they’ve logged out, simply by matching it with the MAC address associated with them when they signed up for the free wifi three weeks ago, or even at another of the retailer’s locations. For example, GoGoGuest, which provides captive portal services to various businesses, says in its privacy policy that it can link a user’s MAC address — and all the information it gets from that address — to personal information provided by the device’s user, like an email address. And it may then combine that data with information about you that it gets from other sources, including third-party data brokers. (GoGoGuest’s CEO Jessica Valenzuela told Recode that it’s “rare” for the company to do this.) Going off the retail grid It’s important to keep in mind that just because retailers can track you doesn’t mean they are. After reading a wifi portal or app’s terms and conditions and privacy policy, you may well think that the benefits of active tracking outweigh the downsides. If you don’t, opting out of active tracking is pretty simple: Don’t opt in. Don’t use the store’s wifi and don’t download and install its app. Opting out of passive tracking is more complicated. The good news is that device manufacturers and even businesses have taken measures to preserve your privacy. Some retailers, like Nordstrom, stopped passive tracking after public outcry when the practice came to light (Nordstrom said the timing was coincidental). Certain portal providers will anonymize your MAC address, preventing them from associating it with information you may have provided in previous or future visits. And some devices send out randomized MAC addresses, which means that neither the portal nor the client business should know the real number. But these measures aren’t foolproof, don’t prevent tracking entirely, and may not be offered by the store or your device. You may also want to take advantage of opt-out service many stores and portal providers offer to prevent your MAC address from being tracked, passively or actively. Registering it with Smart Places, for instance, will opt you out of several providers in one fell swoop. But finding and registering your opt-out preferences for every single store you might walk past is all but impossible, not to mention more time-consuming and a lot less fun than the holiday shopping you’re there to do in the first place. Turning your wifi and Bluetooth off is the best way to avoid retailer tracking, but it doesn’t mean you aren’t being tracked by someone else. As Quartz discovered last year, Google had the ability to track Android devices through Bluetooth beacons even when Bluetooth appeared to be off (you do need to have a store’s mobile app installed for it to track you this way). And cellular carriers like Verizon and T-Mobile sell “insights” to businesses based on your behavior on their networks. The insights are about groups of people rather than individuals (though these companies sold data about individuals up until very recently). That leaves us with the only guaranteed way to truly opt out of being tracked through your mobile device: turn it off. For most of us, that’s not a realistic option. What helps is knowing what you can control — and using that information to think twice before you log on to a free wifi network or download yet another app. Open Sourced is made possible by Omidyar Network. All Open Sourced content is editorially independent and produced by our journalists.
What's a movie shot on a set with a cast doing in Sundance's documentary competition?
"Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets" directors wanted the vibe of a bar about to close. So they handpicked patrons, found a location and let the cameras roll.
White House tells Bolton his manuscript has classified material, cannot be published
The White House has informed former national security adviser John Bolton that his book manuscript appeared to contain "significant amounts of classified information" and could not be published in its current form.
First detailed images of the turbulent surface of the sun, thanks to a new telescope
The surface of our sun is a wild, violent place and now we can see it in exquisite detail, thanks to the first images returned by the National Science Foundation's Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope based in Hawaii.
Engel: Bolton 'strongly implied that something improper had occurred' with Yovanovitch's ouster
Rep. Engel's revelation comes amid a fierce partisan clash over whether the Senate should call Bolton as a witness in the Trump impeachment trial.