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This year may finally fulfill the promise of private human spaceflight
This year could see the fulfillment of a number of long-promised achievements in human spaceflight. For the first time, private companies could launch humans into orbit in 2020, and two different companies could send paying tourists on suborbital missions. The aerospace community has been watching and waiting for these milestones for years, but 2020 is probably the year for both.

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Google plans to drop Chrome support for tracking cookies by 2022
Further ReadingGoogle defends tracking cookies—some experts aren’t buying itThe plan is laid out in a post titled "Building a more private Web: A path towards making third party cookies obsolete." It articulates a shift from a stance Chrome developers took in August, when they warned that the blocking of support for third-party cookies—which allow advertisers to track people as they…

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Forgotten trove of fossil feathers belonged to tiny polar dinosaurs
Researchers have described ten fossil feathers from the polar regions of the former continent Gondwana for the first time. The collection, documented in a recent paper in Gondwana Research, contains a highly diverse array of feathers collected from the 118 million-year-old Koonwarra Fossil Bed in Victoria, Australia. The paper describes what is potentially the earliest evidence of a flight feather,…

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FBI arrests man suspected of orchestrating dozens of “swatting” calls
The US government has criminally charged a Virginia man for helping to organize dozens of "swatting" attacks and bomb threats made against a variety of targets in the United States and Canada. The man allegedly belonged to a group which coordinated via IRC and Tor hidden services to target prominent gamers, journalists, and government officials.

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Verizon offers no-tracking search engine, promises to protect your privacy
Verizon today launched a new search engine, claiming that its "OneSearch" service will offer users more privacy than the standard options in a market dominated by Google. Verizon's actual search results are provided by Microsoft's Bing, but Verizon added several privacy-focused features—while retaining the ability to serve contextual ads. "To allow for a free search engine experience, OneSearch is an…

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Major investment firm to prioritize sustainability, back off coal
When it comes to taking action on climate change, the world has entered a very strange place. Scientific results continue to indicate that the consensus on our role in driving climate change has every reason to be accepted. Several years of the predicted impacts of climate change—record-high temperatures, massive storms, and out-of-control wildfires—have left ever more of the public ignoring…

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Apple’s rack-mountable Mac Pro is now available
Apple has begun selling the rack-mounted variant of its Mac Pro desktop computer. The tower version launched about a month ago, but the rack version is currently showing ship dates ranging from January 23 to February 13, depending on the buyer's chosen specifications. Starting at $6,499 (or $500 more than the tower version), the rack-mounted Mac Pro is identical in…

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Galaxy S20 Ultra to come with a whopping 16GB of RAM
After the recent leak of live pictures of Samsung's next flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S20, more details have started to trickle in about the upcoming device. First, a recap: the Galaxy S20 is the follow-up to last year's Galaxy S10. Samsung's naming scheme is apparently changing, and a "Galaxy S11" is not a product that will be happening.

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Amazon asks court to block US/Microsoft contract because of Trump interference
Amazon is seeking a court order that would prevent Microsoft from doing work for the US Department of Defense under a contract that Amazon says was awarded improperly. As previously reported, Amazon sued the Trump administration in the US Court of Federal Claims, claiming that Microsoft's Azure cloud service won the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract because of "improper…