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28
Feb

PlayStation Plus won’t include free PS3 and Vita games next year


Changes are afoot for PlayStation Plus subscribers. Starting next March, the smattering of monthly free (with subscription) Instant Game Collection offerings won’t include titles for the PlayStation 3 or PlayStation Vita. It won’t affect any games you downloaded previously, however, according to a post on the PS Blog. “Your game saves and other benefits of PS Plus will also remain the same — the only change is that no new PS4 and PS Vita games will be added to the PS Plus monthly games lineup beyond March 8th, 2019.”

Speaking of games, this month PS+ subscribers get Fromsoftware’s brutally difficult PS4 exclusive Bloodborne. Not in the mood to have your teeth kicked in? Then maybe Insomniac’s incredibly pretty Ratchet & Clank reboot will do the trick for you. There’s also Legend of Kay on PS3, and a trio of Cross Buy games including Mighty No. 9, Claire: Extended Cut and Bombing Busters. The latter pair are Vita games that you can also play on PS4, while the former is a PS3 game you can play on PS4.

While the news that those types of games won’t be up for grabs starting this time next year is a bummer, at least Sony is giving folks a heads up well in advance. Sony’s reasoning is that the PS4 install base has grown exponentially and that “most” of its fans are playing on PS4 — not PS3 or Vita. PlayStation’s Instant Game Collection promo for PS+ started back in 2010, and in 2014 began offering a pair of games for each platform.

Since then the company has effectively killed off the PS3 and Vita handheld, so it makes sense to do the same with the gratis games. It does take away some of the value though, and there are bound to be fans who demand a price cut to reflect losing a majority of each month’s freebies.

Source: PS Blog

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28
Feb

YouTube bans Neo-Nazi group following backlash over hate speech


YouTube has banned the Neo-Nazi group Atomwaffen, but only after a Daily Beast report shamed the platform for its inaction. Since the Logan Paul fiasco, YouTube introduced a stricter content policy and (somewhat) more serious consequences for content that harms the community, but it took reports from ProPublica, Vice and The Daily Beast in the last week before Atomwaffen was banned.

For starters, the group has been implicated in five murders from May 2017 to January 2018, ProPublica pointed out — and their videos regularly pushed for a “race war.” Despite a litany of user complaints, the most YouTube had done was precede Atomwaffen’s recruitment videos with a disclaimer marking that it had been flagged as offensive ‘to some audiences.’ When The Daily Beast asked a spokesperson for the platform why the Neo-Nazi group’s content was still up on Monday, they said that putting videos that are borderline hate speech or violent extremism behind ‘a warning interstitial’ and removing interaction features satisfied their revised policies.

“We believe this approach strikes a good balance between allowing free expression and limiting affected videos’ ability to be widely promoted on YouTube,” the spokesperson told The Daily Beast.

Source: The Daily Beast

28
Feb

US regulators delay noise mandate for EVs and hybrids (again)


Electric cars are considerably quieter than their gasoline-powered counterparts, but that’s not always a good thing. Pedestrians, especially those who have visually impairments, often rely on audible cues to signal an approaching vehicle. That’s why a law was proposed in 2013 to add noise to electric vehicles and hybrids traveling under 18.6 miles per hour. It was supposed to go into effect in late 2015, but it was delayed. Now, it’s been delayed again.

According to the Federal Register, the law will now take effect on September 1st, 2020, pushed back from late 2019. All EVs and hybrids produced on after the effective date must have a minimum sound. Starting on September 1st, 2019, 50 percent of hybrid and electric vehicles produced by any manufacturer must meet the standard.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Department of Transportation implemented the delay (again) in response to carmakers such as Honda and General Motors. Apparently, there are “several reasons related to vehicle design, development, and manufacturing that will make it very difficult if not impossible for manufacturers to meet the final rule’s compliance phase-in schedule,” according to the NHTSA’s report.

Via: The Verge

Source: Federal Register

28
Feb

MoviePass Founders Say Subscription Service ‘Would Never Have Happened’ Without iPhones in New App Store Feature


Apple today on the iOS App Store shared a new interview with the founders of MoviePass, touching on the service’s origins and its integral ties to the iPhone and modern smartphone app development. MoviePass debuted in 2011, but grew in popularity last August when the company dropped its subscription price to $9.95/month, which lets customers see one standard 2D film every day in the theater

In Apple’s new interview with Stacy Spikes and Hamet Watt — the pair of entrepreneurs who founded MoviePass seven years ago — the conversation eventually focuses on where the idea for MoviePass emerged. According to Spikes, the kernel of the idea that would become MoviePass originated from art-house theaters in New York City that let customers see unlimited movies for a flat donation fee.

He tried to install a similar model for his own Urbanworld Film Festival in the late 1990s, but admitted it was “too early,” and that iPhones, apps, and the advances in development that emerged from this technology were all needed to address the technical roadblocks of such a service.

“The idea was almost too early,” says Spikes. “We didn’t have iPhones and apps to figure out payment and interfacing. If it weren’t for that development, MoviePass would never have happened.”

MoviePass works through the use of both the iPhone app and a paired debit card that is sent to subscribers through the mail after they sign up. If you want to see a movie, you travel to your local theater (MoviePass is supported at over 90 percent of theaters nationwide), select a 2D showtime, “check in,” and at that time MoviePass transfers the exact cost of the showing to your MoviePass card. Then you can buy a ticket at the box office or a kiosk like any normal ticket purchase.

Although the service is growing, many reports in the months following its August price drop have questioned how long the company can keep up the $9.95/month subscription fee (currently $7.95/month paid annually), as well as its public conflict with theater chain AMC. What MoviePass lacks in profit it hopes to make up for in accrued user data, selling a majority stake of itself to data company Helios and Matheson Analytics, which sees “big potential in the type of information it can glean from MoviePass members,” with “no plans to sell user data to outside parties.”

As of January 2018, MoviePass had 1.5 million subscribers. According to CEO Mitch Lowe, MoviePass will hit three million subscribers by the end of April, and turn a profit once four million subscribers sign up for the service.

MoviePass updated its iOS app [Direct Link] to support the iPhone X this month, providing a revamped user interface with more emphasis on images from popular films, better navigation, and an updated screen for the check in process. If you want to read the full interview with the creators of MoviePass, you can find the discussion with Stacy Spikes and Hamet Watt at the top of the Today tab on the iOS 11 App Store on iPhone or iPad.

Tags: App Store, MoviePass
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28
Feb

Twitter Officially Launches Bookmarks for Saving Tweets


Twitter today announced the official launch of a new Bookmarks feature, which is designed to allow Twitter users to save tweets for later access.

All tweets now feature an updated “share” icon that’s used for both bookmarking and sharing tweets, and Twitter says the share icon is meant to make it easier to save and share privately or publicly.

Bookmarking a tweet to save it for later can be done by tapping the share icon under a tweet and then choosing the “Add Tweet to Bookmarks” option. All saved tweets are located under the “Bookmarks” option that can be accessed from a person’s profile icon menu.

Found something historic?
Don’t want to forget a joke?
Article that you want to read later?

Save the Tweet with Bookmarks, and come back to it whenever you want. Only you can see your Bookmarks. pic.twitter.com/fM2QLcOYNF

— Twitter (@Twitter) February 28, 2018

Twitter Bookmarks are private, so no one can see which tweets have been bookmarked, unlike the “Like” option, which, prior to Bookmarks, has been a preferred method of preserving tweets.

The new Bookmarks feature was first introduced in October and was developed as part of a company-wide Hack Week. Ahead of the debut of Bookmarks, Twitter shared regular details on its development.

Twitter says Bookmarks are now rolling out globally on Twitter for iOS and Android, Twitter Lite, and mobile.twitter.com.

Tag: Twitter
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28
Feb

Nokia 8 Sirocco hands-on: High-end Android One


Nokia just unveiled a number of new devices at MWC 2018, bringing the company back into the modern landscape with a slew of new Android devices. From the ultra-low-end reboot of the Nokia 8110 to the mid-tier flagship Nokia 7 Plus, the company is certainly starting its year off right.

The star of the show, however, is the brand-new Nokia 8 Sirocco. The company is bringing the iconic brand name back with a bang.



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The glass-and-steel body curves around the sides of the device to create a sharp edge that’s more stylish than functional. It’s pretty difficult to hold since the edges are so sharp. Still, the Nokia 8 Sirocco looks like a piece of art.

While the phone does come with extra features like wireless charging and an IP67 water resistance rating, Nokia did leave out a few things that some users might not like. There’s no 3.5 mm headphone jack, and it comes with last year’s Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor.

The rest of the specs are as high-end as the design. This phone features 6 GB of RAM, 128 GB of storage, and a 5.5-inch Quad HD pOLED display that looks absolutely stunning. This is a 16:9 aspect ratio display, so it’s shorter and squatter than most of the other phones on the market. However, colors are bright and vivid, and in our opinion the display looks better than just about any 2017 flagship.

This display looks better than just about any display on a 2017 flagship.

The dual-camera setup on the back, made by Zeiss optics, features 12 and 13 MP sensors. We haven’t had enough time to test the camera in full, but the 2X optical zoom on the second camera shows that the company is serious about optical quality at multiple zoom ranges.

Hardware only tells part of the story though, and a huge feature of this device is the fact that it is running Android One. This is the cleanest version of Android available on the market right now — even cleaner than Google’s Pixel phones. The Sirocco only has 18 apps installed out of the box. Nokia said that simplicity was one the core aspects of it’s design, and this is very evident in the design of the device.

This is the certainly highest-end Android One device on the market. While the Nexus program as we know it is no more, this is the next best thing.

At €749, the Nokia 8 Sirocco is one of the most expensive Android One devices on the market. With the high-end specs, cutting edge design, and sparkling clean version of Android, this is a phone we’ve all decided we are very, very interested in.

Look for the device when it launches in April of this year, and stay tuned for our full review coming soon.

28
Feb

LG Gram 15Z980 vs. Microsoft Surface Book 2 15


Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

Although it seems like making technology smaller and lighter is the dominant trend, some people need larger displays on their mobile PCs. That’s why the 15-inch notebook remains a robust market, which a variety of machines in all form factors — clamshells, 2-in-1s, and gaming systems — that can meet just about anybody’s requirement.

LG has taken a slightly different tack than some manufacturers, focusing on providing the thinnest and light 15-inch notebook it can muster rather than the most powerful. At the same time, Microsoft too has come up with something very different with its tear-off 2-in-1, the Surface Book 2 15. In our LG Gram vs. Microsoft Surface Book 2 15 shootout, we pit an incredibly thin but full-sized machine against the most innovate design around.

LG Gram

Surface Book 2 15

Dimensions
14.1 x 9.0 x 0.7 (in)
13.5 x 9.87 x 0.568-0.90 (in)

Weight
Starting at 2.41 pounds
15-inch starts at 4.2 pounds

Keyboard
Full-size backlit keyboard
Full-size backlit keyboard

Processor
Up to eighth-generation Intel Core i7
Up to eighth-generation Intel Core i7

RAM
Up to 16GB
16GB

Graphics
Intel UHD 620
Intel UHD 620
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060

Display
15.6-inch IPS Display
15.0-inch PixelSense Display

Resolution
Full HD (1,920 x 1,080,  141 ppi)
3,240 x 2,160 (260 ppi)

Storage
Up to 1TB PCIe SSD (512GB x 2)
Up to 1TB PCIe SSE

Networking
802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.1
802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.1

Connectivity
USB-A 3.0 (x3), USB-C 3.0 with Thunderbolt 3, HDMI, microSD card reader, 3.5mm combo jack
USB-A 3.0 (x2), USB-C 3.1, Surface Connect, SD card reader, 3.5mm combo jack, Xbox Wireless built-in

Webcam
1080p webcam
1080p webcam

Operating System
Windows 10
Windows 10

Battery
72 watt-hour
90 watt-hour

Price
$1,100+
$2,500+

Availability
Now (Amazon)
Now (Microsoft Store)

Review
6.0 out of 10 stars
8.0 out of 10 stars

Design

The Surface Book 2  is the machine’s third iteration, and it hasn’t changed much in its design or appearance. It has the same silver-grey magnesium chassis with the unique fulcrum hinge, and it maintains the gap between the display and the keyboard that you’ll either overlook or hate.

In short, the iconic Surface Book design remains largely intact, at least aesthetically — and it retains its very different 2-in-1 format where the display, which contains the actual PC, tears off into a surprisingly thin tablet. It also remains a relatively thick (0.9 inches at the hinge) and heavy (starting at 4.2 pounds).

The LG Gram takes almost the opposite approach — it’s a very traditional clamshell notebook without a hint of 2-in-1 flexibility. What sets it apart from the 15-inch notebook field is its incredibly light magnesium alloy chassis that weighs a scan 2.41. That’s remarkable for a notebook with a 15.6-inch display, and it’s also thin at 0.7 inches. Maybe it’s too thin and light, because although it meets the MIL-STD 810G specification for durability, we found the lid a bit bendy.

The Surface Book 2 15 is a remarkably innovative and flexible 2-in-1, with a robust build quality and good looks. The LG Gram succeeds in its thin and light mission, but that’s not enough to take the design win.

Winner: Surface Book 2 15

Performance

The Surface Book 2 15 is based on the very speedy and surprisingly efficient eighth-generation Intel Core i7-8650U processor. That’s the fast 15-watt processor available today, and it can both ramp up for high-end productivity and scale down to sip power with less demanding tasks. But the Surface Book 2 15’s real claim to fame is its packing in an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 GPU, a bona fide midrange gaming graphics chip that can also churn through things like video editing.

The LG Gram also uses Intel’s latest CPU, although it’s the slightly slower Core i7-8550U. It, too, is plenty fast for standard productivity tasks. However, LG neglected to offer any kind of discrete GPU, and so its gaming and creative productivity chops are unimpressive.

The Surface Book 2 15 is the most powerful 2-in-1 around, and it challenges most other non-gaming notebooks. It wins this category by a country mile.

Winner: Surface Book 2 15

Keyboard, Mouse, and Pen

As a 2-in-1, the Surface Book 2 15 excels in offering different ways to get information into the notebook and to gain control over it. To begin with, the keyboard is excellent with copious amounts of travel and a precise feel, and the touchpad is the best example yet of Microsoft’s excellent Precision Touchpad protocol. And then there’s the Surface Pen with its 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity, tilt support, and superfast responsiveness.

Here, the LG Gram is once again very traditional. It has a decent but not great keyboard that’s softer than we like, a bit imprecise, and surprisingly cramped. The touchpad is also good enough, but ultimately nothing special — it, too, is a bit cramped for the notebook’s overall dimensions.

Both notebooks have a touchscreen, and both support Windows 10 Hello — the LG via fingerprint reader and the Microsoft via infrared camera — and those are really the only areas where they’re equal. The Surface Book 2 15 once again takes a decisive victory.

Winner: Surface Book 2 15

Connectivity

One of the Surface Book’s major compromises has been the lack of built-in connectivity, and the Surface Book 2 15 doesn’t do much to address it. There are two USB-A 3.0 ports, a USB-C 3.1 port without Thunderbolt 3 support, a Surface Connect port, an SD card reader, and a 3.5mm combo jack. That’s it, in addition to the usual 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios.

The LG Gram is a lot more reasonably connected, with solid legacy and futuristic options. There are three USB-A ports, a USB-C port with Thunderbolt 3 support, an HDMI connection, and a microSD card reader. That promises that you’ll not only be able to forego some dongles, but you’ll also be able to leverage the speedy Thunderbolt 3 standard.

Microsoft really needs to bring its Surface line completely up to speed in terms of connectivity. LG wins this round.

Winner: LG Gram

Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

Display

We love competition, and so it would be great if LG could keep up with its recent victory. Unfortunately, we’re in the display section of this comparison, and that’s one that Microsoft’s Surface usually dominates.

That’s no different with the Surface Book 2, which offers a 15-inch display in the productivity-friendly 3:2 aspect ration and with a pin-sharp 3,240 x 2,160 (260 PPI) resolution and awesome contrast and brightness. The color gamut isn’t terribly wide, and so photo editors might want to look elsewhere, but it’s a a great display for getting other kinds of work done.

The LG Gram’s 15.6-inch Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 or 141 PPI) display isn’t nearly as sharp, meaning you’re likely to see some pixels when you’re staring at text and images. Contrast and brightness are also significantly less, although the display’s color gamut is a bit wider. It’s an okay display, but we just didn’t find it much better than average.

As usual, the Surface wins this category. The Surface Book 2 15’s display is very, very good and a real pleasure to use.

Winner: Surface Book 2 15

Portability and Battery Life

When it comes to portability, these machines are polar opposites in both good and bad ways. On the one hand, as we’ve already testified, the LG Gram is incredibly thin and light for a 15-inch notebook, at 2.41 pounds and 0.7 inches respectively. The Surface Book 2 15 is a bit chunky, at 0.90 inches at its thickets point and starting at 4.2 pounds. Clearly, LG’s machine is much easier to carry around.

The Surface Book 2, however, packs in 90 watt-hours of battery to the LG Gram’s 72 watt-hours, and Microsoft has managed to really squeeze out some efficiency. Whether you’re watching video (Microsoft’s 2-in-1 lasted more than a remarkable 20 hours doing so), browsing the web, or working hard, the Surface Book 2 15 is going to last much longer away from a charger. The only caveat is that putting that GTX 1060 to work will change the equation considerably.

Assigning a win here is a bit of a challenge. If you favor the lightest machine possible that will take up the least room in your backpack, then the LG Gram is the clear winner. However, if you want to work as long as possible without carrying around your power brick, then the Surface Book 2 15 comes out ahead. Because people are different, we’re going to split the difference and call this one a tie.

Winner: Tie

Availability and Price

The Surface Book 2 15 is unlikely to win the pricing battle unless it’s going up against Apple’s MacBook Pro. Simply put, it starts out relatively high, at $2,500 for a Core i7-8650U, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD, and goes all the way up from there. At its most expensive, it’s a stratospheric $3,300 for all of the same components plus a 1TB SSD. That’s a lot of money, and you’re paying for the innovation, the GTX 1060 GPU, and the overall flexibility.

The LG Gram is eminently more affordable. It starts out at $1,100 for a Core i5-8250U, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB SSD, and ramps up to $2,000 for a Core i7-8550U, 16GB of RAM, and two 512GB SSDs tied together for a total of 1TB of storage. That’s more affordable than the Surface Book 2 15, although it’s hard to compare the two properly, since the Gram doesn’t include things that the Surface Book 2 gets standard.

As we said, the Surface Book 2 doesn’t win many pricing battles. No surprise, it doesn’t win this one either.

Winner: LG Gram

Flexibility and performance gives Microsoft the victory

Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

The LG Gram is very good at what it sets out to do, that is to provide a highly portable 15-inch notebook with solid productivity performance. It’s a bit expensive for what it brings to the table, but not so much so that we’re put off by its pricing.

The Surface Book 2 15, on the other hand, is a stunning example of innovative design, solid build quality, and excellent performance. It can do more than the LG Gram, acting as not only a solid 15-inch notebook but also letting you tear off the display and use it as a surprisingly light tablet for writing and drawing. It’s also very fast with its legit GPU, and can churn through both moderate gaming and creativity tasks.

We’re going to give Microsoft the win here, although be prepared to pay for the privilege of owning your own Surface Book 2 15. It’s not inexpensive, but if you have the money, we’d recommend no other 15-inch notebook.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Dell XPS 13 vs. Microsoft Surface Book 2 13
  • Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 vs. Microsoft Surface Book 2
  • HP Spectre x360 15 vs Dell XPS 15 2-in-1: Both are awesome, but one is the future
  • LG Gram 15 review
  • HP Spectre x360 15-inch (2018) hands-on review


28
Feb

Apple will keep repairing your vintage iMacs in a new pilot program


Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

If you have a dinosaur of an Apple computer gathering dust in your basement or attic, it’s time to dust it off. While you may have thought that you would never be able to use your vintage Macs again, Apple may be convincing you to think again with its new pilot program. This offering will allow Apple Stores and Apple Authorized Service Providers to keep repairing both 21.5-inch and 27-inch iMac models released in mid-2011. Because of the rate at which Apple devices age out, these seven-year-old machines will soon be considered “vintage” starting in March, but happily, that no longer means that they’re ineligible for service.

According to MacRumors, the new pilot program will only be made available in the United States between March 1 and August 31, and will be subject to parts availability from Apple. After all, the hardware found in an iMac from 2011 is quite different from the parts found in modern iterations of the computer. News of the new pilot circulated in an internal memo, which was reviewed by MacRumors, and further notes that once the pilot program runs its course, repairs will only be available in California and Turkey (where these repairs are actually required by law).

Generally speaking, you can have Apple repair or replace parts in your Mac up to five years after manufacturing ceases for a particular model. That means that computers made in mid-2011 are approaching this date — the last education-only configuration saw its last production cycle in March 2013. Thanks to this program, however, owners will effectively have a grace period of six months to continue getting their iMacs fixed.

Normally, Apple and Apple Authorized Service Providers can offer assistance when it comes to an iMac’s display and hinge, logic board, graphics card, hard drive or SSD, power supply, and various other components. It’s unclear as of yet as to exactly what will be covered under this pilot program, however — in particular, as MacRumors points out, we’re not yet sure as to whether RAM and storage upgrades will be offered.

If the program proves popular, it’s not outside the realm of possibility that the offering could be expanded to other older products. But we’ll have to wait and see how customers react and what Apple decides to do.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Apple’s three Mac Minis released in 2011 are now unsupported ‘vintage’ devices
  • Everything you need to know about the performance dip on your iPhone
  • Reviews arrive days before the iMac Pro launch, and it’s a big performance jump
  • An Apple repair center in California can’t seem to stop calling 911
  • Apple iMac Pro news: everything you need to know about the professional desktop


28
Feb

AMD gains ground on Nvidia thanks to cryptocurrency miners


Cryptocurrency miners continue to change the landscape of the GPU market, and it looks like they may have even pushed AMD’s GPU sales to record highs. According to Tech Radar, AMD’s GPU market share rose from 27 percent to 33 percent in the tail end of 2017, and Nvidia’s market share fell from 72 percent to 66 percent. That’s a big change, and one that directly affects AMD and Nvidia’s bottom lines.

Part of the reason for the shift in AMD’s favor could be simply because of the GPU manufacturer’s already low prices. Compared to Nvidia, AMD graphics cards have always been the favorite of budget-conscious PC gamers, offering almost the same amount of graphical horsepower as comparable Nvidia graphics cards at slightly lower prices. Those naturally lower prices meant AMD graphics cards could bear a higher price increase while still remaining viable to cryptocurrency miners looking to buy graphics cards in bulk.

According to Jon Peddie Research, graphics cards manufacturers sold around three million GPUs to cryptocurrency miners in 2017, or roughly $776 million in total sales. That’s nearly a billion dollars pumped into the GPU market by cryptocurrency miners alone. It’s a growing segment of Nvidia and AMD’s markets so it will be interesting to see how each company deals with shortage issues without alienating this growing industry.

Tech Radar speculates that the boost to AMD’s sales could have been the result of Nvidia’s open support of PC gamers who have criticized cryptocurrency miners for causing a GPU shortage and pushing prices to unacceptable highs. Feeling more supported by AMD could have meant more miners bought AMD products, but it’s more likely that crypto outfits just looked at prices and picked whichever one would maximize their returns.

Nvidia has reportedly floated the idea of developing graphics cards designed solely for GPU mining in order to offer an alternative for crypto miners, so gamers aren’t priced out of the GPU market entirely. The problem remains that video memory is in short supply. Increasing production of GPUs and introducing a new product like the proposed “Turing” cards could mitigate the current price increases in the short term, but it remains to be seen if prices will fall or if PC gamers will just have to deal with the new reality of paying double for midrange graphics cards.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • AMD wants to make it easier for you to buy its GPUs
  • Asus ZenBook 13 (2018) review
  • Nvidia to reveal new GeForce cards for gamers, miners in March, sources say
  • AMD Ryzen CPUs With Vega Graphics Review
  • Video cards are so expensive, you’re better off buying an entire desktop PC


28
Feb

Supposed Bitcoin co-inventor sued for more than $10 billion in cryptocurrency


A recent lawsuit filed in a Florida court seeks more than $10 billion worth of Bitcoins from an individual who claims to be one of three Bitcoin inventors. The lawsuit doesn’t go into Scooby-Doo mode to unravel the mysteries of Bitcoin’s origin, but instead roots out what could be a scheme to hoard Bitcoins for personal gain. To understand what is going on, you need to break down the lawsuit’s timeline. 

The lawsuit centers around three individuals: Paralyzed coder Dave Kleinman who died in 2013 due to complications stemming from an illness, wealthy Australian Craig Wright, and Ira Kleinman, Dave’s brother and executor of his estate. Ira Kleinman is suing Craig Wright on behalf of his brother regarding Bitcoins generated between 2011 and up to Dave Kleinman’s passing in 2013. 

According to the lawsuit, Dave Kleinman and Craig Wright were in communication in March 2008, just seven months before the Bitcoin whitepaper published in October 2008. By January 3, 2009, Satoshi Nakamoto — the pseudonym used by Bitcoin’s creator — created the very first block of Bitcoin transaction data. Nine days later, Kleinman, Wright, and “two others” successfully conducted a Bitcoin transaction. Eventually, Kleinman tells his brother Ira that he’s creating digital currency with “a wealthy foreign man.

In 2011, Kleinman and Wright launched a new Florida-based business called W&K Info Defense Research LLC targeting the development of Bitcoin-based technologies. According to the lawsuit, Kleinman was the “sole member” while Wright served as his “business partner.” From the point they launched the business until Kleinman’s death in 2013, the coder retained ownership of all Bitcoins mined under the company’s banner. 

But shortly after Kleinman’s death, Wright told Kleinman’s father that both men were two of three individuals responsible for Bitcoin’s creation. Wright then delivered documents to the Kleinman family showing that Dave Kleinman transferred ownership of the business to Wright in the case of possible death. Brother Ira Kleinman called foul play, accusing Wright of fraud by backdating documents and forging the deceased’s signature using a computer font. 

To keep the accusations from going public, Wright promised Ira Kleinman that his brother’s estate would be paid what Dave owned during those two years under the W&K Info Defense Research LLC banner. That never happened, forcing Ira Kleinman to file a lawsuit against Wright this month. According to the lawsuit, the Bitcoin amount will be determined by the court. 

Based on evidence provided in the lawsuit, there is a clear difference between Kleinman‘s signature and the ones seen on the alleged forged documents. According to one of two lawyers responsible for the lawsuit, “the proverbial ball is in Craig’s court at this point. 

“It doesn’t matter whether either of them were involved in the Satoshi team or are Satoshi themselves,” the lawyer added. “All that matters is what is clear from Craig’s admissions and evidence and emails: That they were involved in Bitcoin mining from the inception of Bitcoin or very shortly thereafter.” 

The lawsuit is in the Florida court given it’s the home state of W&K Info Defense Research LLC. 

Editors’ Recommendations

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  • Production on ‘House of Cards’ will resume early next year without Kevin Spacey
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