Shared posts

12 Jun 22:18

Best Gifts Under $200 for 2024 - CNET

by Desiree DeNunzio
Impress them with a gift that's on the indulgent side without blowing your budget.
04 Jun 01:09

A security expert found that Recall saves plain-text logs, says that it "sets cybersecurity back a decade"

by Simon Batt

When Microsoft announced Copilot+, a lot of its proposed features caused some buzz on the internet. However, out of all of the new AI-powered tools we were shown, the Recall feature saw the most conversation. The Recall feature automatically takes screenshots as you use your computer and uses it when you ask Copilot what you were doing in the past; you can think of it as your PC's memory of what you did.

28 May 00:23

DevOps Dilemma: How Can CISOs Regain Control in the Age of Speed?

by (The Hacker News)
Introduction The infamous Colonial pipeline ransomware attack (2021) and SolarWinds supply chain attack (2020) were more than data leaks; they were seismic shifts in cybersecurity. These attacks exposed a critical challenge for Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs): holding their ground while maintaining control over cloud security in the accelerating world of DevOps.
26 May 09:44

Latest stable Steam Deck update fixes a boot game mode issue

by Liam Dawe
Valve released a small stable update for the Steam Deck, while work continues on SteamOS 3.6 that's currently in Preview.
14 May 14:10

Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365 Admin Center 

by Sudha

Effective teamwork begins and ends with communication” – that’s true! Better communication will help you increase productivity and collaboration in your Microsoft 365 environment. Sure, we have emails, Yammer posts, MS Teams, and other ways to communicate, but sometimes, important messages can get lost in the hustle. But don’t worry! 😎There’s a solution called Organizational messages in Microsoft 365 admin center, which is currently in public preview. Let’s take a closer look at what it does. 👇 

What is Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365 Admin Center

Organizational messages in the M365 admin center lets you send concise, actionable, and customized messages directly to specific users within the Microsoft products they use like Microsoft Windows 11 or Microsoft 365 apps. These messages are invaluable for improving in-product experiences, especially in scenarios like remote or hybrid work setups. 

 You can use organizational messages to, 

✅Encourage Microsoft 365 security best practices. 
✅ Update users with new policy enforcement. 
✅ Inform about new products/features. 
✅ Distribute educational resources for employees. 
✅ Share updates on Microsoft 365 services or licenses. 
✅ Inform about organizational projects and goals. 
✅ Deliver service health notices. 
✅ Facilitate Microsoft 365 user onboarding. 

This organizational message experience in the M365 admin center serves as a comprehensive hub, allowing you to view and manage all the messages in one place, regardless of their origin.

Key Features of Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365  

The new organizational messages feature in Microsoft 365 offers several enhancements: 

  1. Centralized Location: It now has as a centralized hub for managing all activities related to organizational messages. This includes creating, managing, and reviewing messages all within the Microsoft 365 admin center. 
  1. Customization: You have the flexibility to customize messages according to your needs. This includes adding CTA, URLs, specifying frequency and timeframes for message delivery, customizing message titles, and adding images for additional information. 
  1. Targeted Delivery: You can precisely target your messages to specific users or groups within your organization, ensuring that the right information reaches the right people at the right time. 
  1. Approval Flows: With the introduction of approval flows, you can maintain control over the content being delivered. This ensures that messages undergo proper review before being sent out, minimizing the risk of inaccuracies or inappropriate content. 

These enhancements make the organizational messages feature more versatile and user-friendly, empowering administrators to effectively communicate with their organization.  Let’s explore how to access organizational messages within the Microsoft 365 admin center. But wait, there are some prerequisites! 

Prerequisites to Use Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365  

  1. To create organizational messages in the M365 admin center, i.e., Author, you should be a Global administrator or Organizational Messages Writer. 
  1. To review organizational messages i.e., Approver, you should be a Global Administrator or Organizational Messages Approver. 
  1. Recipients should have access to the Microsoft products specified in the ‘Location’. For example, if the message is set to be delivered to the Windows spotlight channel, the recipient must have Windows 11 Enterprise. 
  1. Make sure to enable all organizational message policy requirements in Microsoft 365. 

View Organizational Messages in the Microsoft Entra Admin Center 

To access organizational messages, follow the steps below. 

  1. Sign in to the Microsoft 365 admin center. 
  2. Navigate to the “Reports” section. 
  3. Expand it and select “Organizational messages” in Microsoft 365. 

Now, you can view three actionable options, highlighting the centralization aspect of the new feature. 

Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365 admin center
Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365 Admin Center

Let’s see how these three options help!

1. Manage Organizational Messages in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center: 

You can review and control the messages for any users in the organization from this central spot. Also, you can view details such as the location of the message to appear at the user’s end, objectives, impressions, clicks, and other details of the organizational messages. From here, you can do the following: 

  • Filtering: Utilize filtering options to sort through the details of organizational messages, making it effortless to find specific messages or information you need. 
  • Approval and Deletion: Take charge of organizational messages by approving, canceling, or deleting them directly within the Microsoft 365 admin center. This ensures that only relevant and approved messages are circulated within your organization. 
  • Drafted Messages: Easily locate drafted messages by setting the filter to “Draft” and making modifications as necessary directly from the manage section of this feature. This streamlines the process of refining and finalizing messages before distribution. 

Let’s dive into the next option now. 

2. Create Organizational Messages in the Microsoft 365 

To create an organizational message in Microsoft 365, follow these simple steps: 

Step 1: Objective- Begin by selecting the purpose or objective of your message. This helps ensure that your message is aligned with its intended goals. 

Step 2: Template- Decide on the format of your message. You have two options: 

  • Create your own: Design a message from scratch, incorporating your own words, company logo, and other custom elements to fit your specific requirements. 
  • Templated messages: Choose from pre-designed templates provided by Microsoft, making it easy to create a message without starting from scratch. 

Step 3: Location- Next, choose where the message will be displayed for users. For example, you might select “Windows Spotlight” as the location. 

Step 4: Customize- Add customization to your message, such as full text and custom URLs, to tailor it to your audience’s needs. 

Step 5: Recipients- Select the recipients for your message, ensuring that it reaches the appropriate users within your organization. 

Step 6: Schedule- Set the start and end dates and choose how often the message will be sent to the same user. This helps ensure timely delivery and relevance. 

Step 7: Review & Finish- Review the message before scheduling or sending it for approval to your organization’s approvers. This ensures that the message meets quality standards and is ready for distribution. 

Create Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365
Create Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365

3. Review Organizational Messages Activity in Microsoft 365 

When you check out the “Review Activity” section, you’ll find useful info to see how well your messages are doing: 

Advanced Insights: Here, you can dig deeper: 

  • Filtering: Pick specific periods, status, or others to focus on specific organizational message details. 
  • Graphs: See trends of organizational messages over time with easy-to-understand graphs. 
  • Data Export: You can download the data for further analysis. 

Time-Series Data Charts: At the top, three graphs show how your message views, clicks, and click-through rates change each day. 

Points to Note: 

  1. At present, organizational messages are not restricted based on the licenses possessed by the participating tenants, authors, approvers, and recipients. But in the future, the organizational messages features might be restricted to specific Microsoft licenses.  
  1. If you use fully customized messages, an approval process is required. However, no approval process is needed if you use pre-made templates.  
  1. Messages not reviewed within the specified end time will automatically get rejected by the system.  
  1. If an approver rejects the message, the message will be marked as “rejected” and the author needs to withdraw it. After that, the author should modify the new draft.  
  1. The approvers cannot approve/reject their own messages. 
  1. If you save your draft before the ‘Schedule’ step without assigning a custom name, it will automatically be given a name based on the date and time of the save.  
  1. Once you select the “Send for approval” option while creating your customized messages, anyone with an approver role can be able to review it.  
  1. When sending a new message to the same channel, the images from the previous message are automatically populated. You need to replace them with a new image for your new message.  
  1. In spring 2024, the organizational messages will have another feature called “Sent urgent message” to allow admins to send messages out fast during time-sensitive events like service outages. 
  1. Adoption Score organizational messages on Office or Outlook channels are not visible in the centralized experience. Additionally, Intune organizational messages can only be read in the centralized experience; they cannot be canceled or deleted. 

That’s all. Hope this blog brings you more information about organizational messages in the Microsoft 365 admin center. If you have any doubts regarding this, you can reach us via the comments section. Happy reading! 

The post Organizational Messages in Microsoft 365 Admin Center  first appeared on AdminDroid Blog.

08 May 10:09

English Victorian debtor's prisons found this one weird trick to make sure their prisoners got their 10,000 steps in. As you might have guessed it did not involve doing anything productive or leaving prison alive [Sad]

07 May 14:04

Microsoft Shuts Down Arkane Austin, Tango Gameworks, and More in Devastating Cuts at Bethesda

by msmash
Wesley Yin-Poole, reporting for IGN: Microsoft has closed a number of Bethesda studios, including Redfall maker Arkane Austin, Hi-Fi Rush and The Evil Within developer Tango Gameworks, and more in devastating cuts at Bethesda, IGN can confirm. Alpha Dog Studios, maker of mobile game Mighty Doom, will also close. Roundhouse Games will be absorbed by The Elder Scrolls Online developer ZeniMax Online Studios. On Redfall, the disastrous vampire co-op game will now not receive promised updates as Microsoft has ended all development on the game. Microsoft said Redfall will remain online to play, and it will provide a "make-good" offer for those who bought the Hero DLC. In an email to staff sent by Matt Booty, head of Xbox Game Studios, Microsoft blamed the cuts on a "reprioritization of titles and resources."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

03 May 14:47

FreeBSD Working On Improving Its Audio Stack & Creating Graphical OS Installer

The FreeBSD project has published its Q1'2024 status report to outline various advancements over the past few months...
02 May 21:05

Microsoft Bans US Police Departments From Using Enterprise AI Tool

by BeauHD
An anonymous reader quotes a report from TechCrunch: Microsoft has changed its policy to ban U.S. police departments from using generative AI through the Azure OpenAI Service, the company's fully managed, enterprise-focused wrapper around OpenAI technologies. Language added Wednesday to the terms of service for Azure OpenAI Service prohibits integrations with Azure OpenAI Service from being used "by or for" police departments in the U.S., including integrations with OpenAI's text- and speech-analyzing models. A separate new bullet point covers "any law enforcement globally," and explicitly bars the use of "real-time facial recognition technology" on mobile cameras, like body cameras and dashcams, to attempt to identify a person in "uncontrolled, in-the-wild" environments. [...] The new terms leave wiggle room for Microsoft. The complete ban on Azure OpenAI Service usage pertains only to U.S., not international, police. And it doesn't cover facial recognition performed with stationary cameras in controlled environments, like a back office (although the terms prohibit any use of facial recognition by U.S. police). That tracks with Microsoft's and close partner OpenAI's recent approach to AI-related law enforcement and defense contracts. Last week, taser company Axon announced a new tool that uses AI built on OpenAI's GPT-4 Turbo model to transcribe audio from body cameras and automatically turn it into a police report. It's unclear if Microsoft's updated policy is in response to Axon's product launch.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

26 Apr 14:02

10 Critical Endpoint Security Tips You Should Know

by (The Hacker News)
In today's digital world, where connectivity is rules all, endpoints serve as the gateway to a business’s digital kingdom. And because of this, endpoints are one of hackers' favorite targets.  According to the IDC, 70% of successful breaches start at the endpoint. Unprotected endpoints provide vulnerable entry points to launch devastating cyberattacks. With IT
07 Apr 02:24

Offline Security Intelligence Update is now in Public Preview

by Megha_Priya

We are extremely excited to share that Offline Security Intelligence Update is now in Public Preview!


Organizations can now update security intelligence (also referred to as “signatures”) on Linux endpoints with limited or no exposure to the internet using a local hosting server. Exercise better control over the download and deployment of signatures on their Linux servers running critical workloads.


In addition, these are the benefits of the new offline security intelligence update capability:

  • Control and manage the frequency of signature downloads on the local server and endpoints pulling signatures from the local server.
  • Get peace of mind by being able to test the downloaded signatures on a test device before propagating it to the entire fleet.
  • Reduce network bandwidth as now, on behalf of your entire fleet, only one local server will poll Microsoft Cloud to get the latest signatures.
  • Run any of the 3 major platforms  (Windows, Mac, Linux) on the local server without needing to install Defender for Endpoint.
  • Know you are getting the latest antivirus protection as signatures are always downloaded along with the latest compatible AV engine.
  • Trust that there are backups in case. For every update, signature with n-1 version is moved to a backup folder on the local server. In case of any issue with the latest signature, you can pull the n-1 signature version from the backup folder to your endpoints. On the rare occasion offline update fails,  you can also choose to fallback to online update directly from Microsoft Cloud.


How it works

Figure 1: High-level process flow diagram showing signatures downloading to local server and then being propagated to the Linux EndpointsFigure 1: High-level process flow diagram showing signatures downloading to local server and then being propagated to the Linux Endpoints


  • Organizations need to set up a local server that is reachable by Microsoft Cloud; ownership of the management and maintenance of the local server lies with the organization.
  • Signatures are downloaded from Microsoft Cloud on this local Web/NFS server by executing a script using cronjob/task scheduler on the local server.
  • Endpoints running Defender for Endpoint will pull the downloaded signatures from this local Web/NFS server at a user-defined time interval.
  • Signatures pulled on the endpoints from the local server are first verified before loading it with the AV engine.
  • To trigger and configure the update process, update the managed config json file on the Linux endpoints.
  • The status of the update can be seen on the mdatp cli.



Getting started

Please upgrade to the latest Defender for Endpoint agent version 101.24022.000 or above to experience the benefits. 


To configure Linux Endpoints and the local server please refer to our documentation.  

22 Mar 18:50

Microsoft Enables DNS Tunneling By Default For WSL - More Reliable Networking

Microsoft is rolling out WSL 2.2.1 to WIndows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) users with more reliable networking support, hang fixes, and other improvements...
20 Feb 02:30

Lemmings, or how clever tricks make platforms more different than they seem

by Scali

The other day I read this in-depth article on font usage in early DOS games by VileR. Since some of the fonts were apparently stored not as 1-bit bitmaps, but as multiple bits per pixel, I was wondering when the usage of multicolour fonts became commonplace on the PC.

I randomly thought of Lemmings as a game that I recall using a very nice and detailed font. But that turned out to be quite the can of worms, so I thought I’d write a quick summary of what we uncovered.

Now Lemmings was a game originally developed on the Amiga, and then ported to many different platforms. I mostly played the Amiga game back in the day, although I did also have a copy of the PC version. I had a vague recollection that although the Amiga version did look somewhat better, the PC version used basically the same font as the Amiga version.

Let’s compare the Amiga and PC version of Lemmings. And while we’re at it, let’s throw in the Atari ST version as well. More specifically, let’s concentrate on the VGA version of Lemmings for PC. Then we have three machines that have roughly similar video capabilities. All three machines have a video mode of 320×200, and support a palette that can be user-defined by RGB values. The Atari ST supports 3 bits per component (512 colours in total), the Amiga supports 4 bits per component (4096 colours in total), and VGA supports 6 bits per component (262144 colours in total).

The Atari ST supports 16 colours at once, the Amiga supports 32 colours at once (or 64 colours in the special ‘Extra HalfBrite’ mode), and VGA supports 256 colours at once. So at first glance, all three machines appear to have similar capabilities, with the Atari ST being the most limited, and VGA being the most capable. But now let’s look at how the game looks on these three systems.

First, the original on the Amiga:

Then the Atari ST:

Okay, looks very similar at first glance, although there is something I couldn’t quite put my finger on at first glance. But let’s look at the VGA version first:

Hum, wait a second… When I look for screenshots on the internet, I also find some that look like this:

Are there different versions of Lemmings for PC? Well, yes and no, as it turns out. When you start the game, there is a menu that asks what machine type you have:

The first screenshot is from the game in “For PC compatibles” mode, the second screenshot is “For High Performance PCs”. So let’s call the first ‘lo’ mode, and the second ‘hi’ mode.

Okay, so let’s inspect things closer here. At first glance, the main level view appears to be the same on all three systems. That would imply that only 16 colours are used on all systems, otherwise the Atari ST would not be able to keep up visually with the others.

The only difference that stands out is that the Amiga and Atari ST have a blue-ish background colour, where the VGA versions are black. It’s not entirely clear why that is. Also, the blue background is used only for the level on Amiga, where the background is black for the text and icons. On the Atari ST, the background for the text is blue, and it only switches to black for the icons.

But then we get to the part that kicked this off in the first place: the font. On the Amiga we see a very detailed font, using various shades of green. On the Atari ST, we see a font that looks the same, at first glance (more on that later). On the ‘lo’ VGA version, we see a font with the same basic shape, but it appears to only have two shades: one green and one white.

The ‘hi’ VGA version however, looks different. For some reason, the font is not as high. Instead of the font filling out the entire area between the level view and the icon bar, there are 4 black scanlines between the level and the font. The icons are the same size and in the same position on screen, so effectively the font is scaled down a bit. It is only 11 pixels high, where the others are 15 pixels high. The font has more shades of green here: a number of 4 in total. Still less than on the Amiga (I count 7 shades there) and Atari ST (5 shades).

Okay, so there is something going on here. But what exactly? Well, we are being tricked! The game runs in a 16-colour mode on all three systems. However, if you inspect the screenshots closely, you will see that there are actually more than 16 colours on screen. As already mentioned, the font itself uses various shades of green. You don’t see that many shades of green in the level. That implies that the palette is changed between the level and the font.

This explains why the PC version has a ‘lo’ and a ‘hi’ version: Because VGA is not synchronized to the system clock, it is not trivial to change the palette at a given place on screen. While it is possible (see also my 1991 Donut), it will require some clever timer interrupts and recalibrating per-frame to avoid drift. So that explains why they chose to only do this on high performance PCs. On a slow PC, it would slow down the game too much. It also explains why there are 4 black scanlines between the level and the font. Firstly, because of all the different PCs out there, it is very hard to predict exactly how long the palette change takes. So you’ll want a bit of margin to avoid visible artifacts. Secondly, various VGA implementations won’t allow the RAMDAC to read the palette registers while the CPU is updating them. This can lead to black output or artifacts similar to CGA snow. But if all pixels are black, you won’t notice.

So apparently the ‘hi’ version does perform a palette change, where the ‘lo’ version does not. That means the ‘lo’ version can only use colours that are already in the level palette for its font. It also explains why the icons don’t have the brownish colours of the other three versions: the icons also have to make do with whatever is in the palette.

But getting back to the ‘hi’ version… Its icons still don’t look as good as the Amiga and Atari ST versions. We can derive why this is: we do not see any black scanlines between the font and icons. So we know that the ‘hi’ version does not perform a second palette change between font and icons. The Amiga and Atari ST versions do, however. On the PC, this wouldn’t have been practical. They would have had to sacrifice another few black scanlines, and the CPU requirements would have gone up even further. So apparently this was the compromise. That means that a single 16-colour palette is shared between the font and the icons.

Speaking of which, during the in-between screens, the VGA version also changes palette:

The top part shows the level in 16 colours. Then there are a few black scanlines, where the palette is changed to the brown earth colours and the blue shades for the font.

Mind you, that is still a simplification of how it looks on the Amiga:

Apparently the Amiga version changes the palette at every line of text. The PC is once again limited to changing the palette once, in an area with a few black scanlines. In this case, both the ‘lo’ and ‘hi’ versions appear to do the same. Performance was not an issue with a static info screen, apparently.

The Amiga uses 640×200 resolution here. The PC instead uses 640×350. That explains why the PC version has a somewhat strange aspect ratio for the level overview.

But getting back to the font and icons in-game. They do look a bit more detailed on the Amiga than on the Atari ST. And it’s not just the colours, it seems. So what is going on here? Well, possibly the most obvious place to spot it is the level overview in the bottom-right corner. Yes, it has twice the horizontal resolution of the other platforms. Apparently it is running in 640×200 resolution, rather than 320×200.

That explains why the icons look slightly different as well. They are a more detailed high-resolution version than the other platforms. And if we look closer at the font, we see that this is the high-resolution font that is also used in the other screen.

The Atari ST cannot do this, because it does not have a 640×200 mode that is capable of 16 colours. And for VGA, as already said, it’s not possible to accurately perform operations at a given screen position. So if you can’t accurately change palettes, you certainly can’t accurately change display resolution.

So there we have it, three systems with very similar graphics capabilities on paper, yet we find that there are 4 different ways in which the game Lemmings is actually rendered. Clever developers pushing the limits of each specific system.

I suppose the biggest unanswered question is: why does the VGA version have this limitation? Worst-case, you have 3 palettes of 16 colours on screen, which is 48 colours. In mode 13h, you can have 256 colours, so no palette changes would be required. Instead the developers appear to have chosen to use the same 16-colour mode for both EGA and VGA, and only improve the palette for the VGA version. This may be because they use EGA functionality for scrolling and storing sprites offscreen. In mode 13h you wouldn’t have that. You’d have to perform scrolling by copying data around in memory. That may have been too slow. And perhaps they weren’t familiar with mode X. Or perhaps they tried mode X, but found that it was too limiting, so they stuck with EGA mode 0Dh anyway. Or perhaps they figured they’d need separate content for a mode X mode, which would require too much extra diskspace. Who knows.

15 Feb 17:23

4 reasons why the dual-chip graphic card trend died

by Ahmad Rafiq

Everybody knows about multi-GPU gaming setups, which were the spectacle of the previous decade. But did you know that mainstream GPUs that had more than one chip on their PCB used to exist? These rendering beasts have been around since 1997, with the Dynamic Pictures Oxygen 402 being one of the first with not two, but four GPU chips on a single PCB.

12 Feb 23:38

Gwed S01E01 1080p WEB H264-FishAndChips

02 Feb 23:19

I can’t believe it took me so long to go back to this very important post :D


I can’t believe it took me so long to go back to this very important post :D <3.

28 Jan 15:45

What's so great about being a prankster? You get to meat the best people [Weird]

26 Jan 11:57

If Wayne had gone right to the police, this would never have happened [Dumbass]

15 Jan 18:51

NVIDIA G-Sync Pulsar sounds great, but it will NOT fix video-game stutters

by John Papadopoulos

At CES 2024, NVIDIA announced G-Sync Pulsar. G-Sync Pulsar is the next evolution of Variable Refresh Rate (VRR). This tech aims to improve visual clarity. In its press release, though, NVIDIA claimed that G-Sync Pulsar will offer a stutter-free experience. And, contrary to what the green team stated, G-Sync Pulsar will NOT fix video-game stutters. … Continue reading NVIDIA G-Sync Pulsar sounds great, but it will NOT fix video-game stutters →

The post NVIDIA G-Sync Pulsar sounds great, but it will NOT fix video-game stutters appeared first on DSOGaming.

09 Jan 19:36

S.T.A.L.K.E.R. game engine OpenXRay gets taken down on GitHub

by Liam Dawe
OpenXRay is an improved cross-platform version of the X-Ray Engine, which is the original game engine used in the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. game series by GSC Game World. However, it seems a bad actor got it taken down from GitHub. NOTE: ARTICLE UPDATED.
05 Jan 23:27

I used a Mac with 8GB memory in 2024. Here's how it went.

by Brady Snyder

Memory and storage are in a really strange place as we begin 2024. Some devices have more RAM available than others have in storage, offering mind-boggling amounts of memory. The OnePlus 12, one of the best smartphones right now, offers up to 24GB of RAM, which puts many low and mid-tier computers to shame.

04 Jan 18:10

Beyond Protocols: How Team Camaraderie Fortifies Security

by Joshua Goldfarb

The most efficient and effective teams have healthy and constructive cultures that encourage team members to go above and beyond the call of duty.

The post Beyond Protocols: How Team Camaraderie Fortifies Security appeared first on SecurityWeek.

20 Dec 03:53

Canada Lays Out Plan To Phase Out Sales of Gas-Powered Cars, Trucks By 2035

by BeauHD
"EVs mandates are coming to Canada whether you like it or not," writes Slashdot reader Major_Disorder, sharing a report from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. "Here is what my Canadian brothers and sisters need to know." From the report: New regulations being published this week by Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault will effectively end sales of new passenger vehicles powered only by gasoline or diesel in 2035. Guilbeault said the Electric Vehicle Availability Standard will encourage automakers to make more battery-powered cars and trucks available in Canada. "There's no mistaking it. We are at a tipping point," he said, noting sizable growth in EV sales in Canada and demand that has previously outstripped the available supply. Automakers will have the next 12 years to phase out combustion engine cars, trucks and SUVs with a requirement to gradually increase the proportion of electric models they offer for sale each year. The electric-vehicle sales mandate regulations will be published later this week. They are setting up a system in which every automaker will have to show that a minimum percentage of vehicles they offer for sale are fully electric or longer-range plug-in hybrids. It will start with 20 per cent in 2026 and rise slightly to 23 per cent in 2027. After that, the share of EVs will begin to increase much faster, so that by 2028, 34 per cent of all vehicles sold will need to be electric -- 43 per cent by 2029 and 60 per cent by 2030. That number keeps rising until it hits 100 per cent in 2035. Guilbeault said the government is working to revise the national building code to encourage the spread of charging stations. The updated code would ensure that residential buildings constructed after 2025 have the electrical capacity to accommodate the charging stations. [...] The policy will be regulated under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act and will issue credits to automakers for the EVs they sell. Generally, a fully electric model will generate one credit, with plug-in hybrids getting partial or full credit depending on how far they can go on a single charge. Manufacturers that sell more EVs than they need to meet each year's target can either bank those credits to meet their targets in future years, or sell them to companies that didn't sell enough. They can also cover up to 10 per cent of the credits they need each year by investing in public fast-charging stations. Every $20,000 spent on DC fast chargers that are operating before 2027 can earn the equivalent of one credit. Automakers that come up short for their sales requirements will be able to cover the difference by buying credits from others who exceed their targets, or by investing in charging stations. Automakers can start earning some credits toward their 2026 and 2027 targets over the next two years -- a bid by the government to encourage a faster transition.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

05 Dec 20:15

Masters of Horror Pro-Life (2006) [720p] [BluRay] [YTS.MX]

Masters of Horror Pro-Life (2006)
IMDB Rating: 5.6/10
Genre: Horror
Size: 525.34 MB
Runtime: 12hr 57 min

Pro-Life, directed by John Carpenter,
27 Nov 19:59

Pentagon’s AI Initiatives Accelerate Hard Decisions on Lethal Autonomous Weapons

by Associated Press

The U.S. military is increasing use of AI technology that will fundamentally alter the nature of war.

The post Pentagon’s AI Initiatives Accelerate Hard Decisions on Lethal Autonomous Weapons appeared first on SecurityWeek.

22 Nov 02:01

What do you and George RR Martin have in common? Neither of you have written any new pages of the Winds of Winter in the past year [Obvious]

12 Nov 02:37

Ten Days Before The Twilight Zone Premiered, Mike Wallace Asked Rod Serling A Question That Aged Badly

by (William Bibbiani)
Rod Serling correctly envisioned that a commercial work of art also had the power to inform and subvert, and he did just that with The Twilight Zone.

11 Nov 17:31

The Invincible Review – Exploring the Unknown

by Ule Lopez

What makes us ourselves? What awaits us in the vast confines of space? Are the hidden mysteries meant for us to be found? These questions are all tackled by the game The Invincible (not to be mistaken with the series of the same name). This game, based on a popular Polish sci-fi novel written by Stanisław Lem, puts us in the role of a space traveler who discovers a secret that probably shouldn't have been discovered to begin with. The game is essentially a walking simulator. As such, you are going to have to keep that in mind when unpacking […]

Read full article at

11 Nov 01:29

From classroom to cyberfront: Unlocking the potential of the next generation of cyber defenders 

by Tina Romeo

In a world where the digital frontier is expanding and cyberattacks are becoming more sophisticated with speed and scale, the guardians of our virtual realms have never been in greater demand.1 It’s important to leverage this year’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month to celebrate the people who keep us safe and to raise visibility on the need for education and awareness—for everyone. With a staggering 3.4 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs, almost 70 percent of organizations report not having enough cybersecurity staff to be effective.2

And security leaders are sounding the alarm as they want to keep cybersecurity professionals equipped with the right resources to avoid burn out. Yet, this isn’t merely about technical prowess. The ideal cybersecurity workforce harmoniously merges technical expertise with invaluable soft skills. While cutting-edge technology offers part of the remedy, the heart of our defense lies in human expertise—the minds that craft strategies, wielding these tools to ward off potential cyberthreats. The gap in cybersecurity talent is a collective concern, and Microsoft is eager to support the mission to bridge this gap through educational programs that include diversity, providing guidance to security professionals and their organizations on how to be cybersmart and generative AI technology to augment the talent that prevails.

A woman sitting in an office working at a computer near the window.

Be Cybersmart

Help educate everyone in your organization with cybersecurity awareness resources and training curated by the security experts at Microsoft.

Debunking myths about cybersecurity careers

There are still a lot of misconceptions about what is required to be a successful professional in this industry.

Common fallacies that may hold people back from exploring cybersecurity careers include that only science, technology, engineering, and mathematics graduates—or college graduates in general—can get cybersecurity jobs. The industry is growing more inclusively and attracting a broader range of people, including professionals outside IT. In fact, half of employees younger than 30 join the industry with a non-IT background.3 To take on cybersecurity challenges, security teams must be as diverse as attackers in terms of background, race, and gender. As we like to say, the door is open for anyone to become a cyber defender.

“Almost everything needs cybersecurity. It’s just going to keep growing and it will never go away, so we need more people in it. To get people into cybersecurity we need to break that stigma of what the industry is about. Cybersecurity is not just coding, and we legitimately need all types of people, like psychology majors, English majors, business majors, besides computer science, because there are so many different areas you can get into” says Caitlin Sarian, also known as Cybersecurity Girl, a prominent digital influencer that joined an episode of our Secure the Job Podcast and whose main goal is to help more people understand cybersecurity and consider joining the industry.

“We need to change the security narrative from fear-filled dark tones to hope-filled, optimistic, innovative tones for several reasons. First and foremost, security is a prime driver for innovation, and it needs to inspire and empower people. If we don’t involve everyone, if we continue to think of security as exclusive and fear-filled, then we are creating barriers to entry for defenders to participate,” says Vasu Jakkal, Corporate Vice President, Security, Compliance, Identity, and Management, Microsoft.

Creating real impact in a new and more diverse generation of cybersecurity experts

We take the cybersecurity talent gap seriously and are committed to doing our part to help close it. In 2021, we launched a national campaign with United States community colleges to skill and recruit 250,000 people into the cybersecurity workforce by 2025 and in summer 2023 we made this mission global by expanding this program to 28 countries. Furthermore, the school 42 initiative provides Microsoft Cybersecurity Curriculum and facilitates the completion of Microsoft Certification (SC900) in campuses worldwide. Additionally, with programs like Technology Education and Learning Support (TEALS) and the Last Mile Microsoft Scholarship, and partnerships with organizations such as Codepath, we’re not only taking computer science and cybersecurity learning to students, but we’re also going the full circle in providing the financial support many families need to enable students to continue their educational pathway.

However, there is still a long way to go, and we know that one way to reduce the skills gap is to bring more underrepresented groups into the workforce. One important effort we’ve been focusing on is attracting more women to the industry. Women offer diverse points of view, deep analytics and risk assessment skills, and emotional intelligence that are hallmarks for a successful cyber defender, but they represent around only 25 percent of the cybersecurity workforce today.4 In a Microsoft-commissioned survey, we learned that the reasons for this underrepresentation include gender bias, not enough female mentors and role models, insufficient education opportunities, and uncertainty about cybersecurity career pathways.5 That’s why we partner globally with projects that practice similar values and have the same commitment to diversity in cybersecurity, such as Minorities in CybersecurityExecutive Women’s Forum, and WOMCY. In the United States, two of our main education partners, Women in Cybersecurity (WiCyS) and Girl Security, have been recently recognized by the White House’s National Cyber Workforce and Education Strategy as key players in changing the diversity landscape of the cybersecurity workforce.

“Part of the challenge is driving the message that diversity is not just about numbers. It’s about innovating security solutions that we can’t possibly conceive right now because we don’t have diverse voices in the room to yield those outcomes. When we bring first-generation college and immigrant students to the table, the effects are remarkable.”

—Lauren Buitta, Chief Executive Officer and Founder, Girl Security

At Microsoft we’ve also been using technology innovation to spread interest in cybersecurity while doing it earlier in the process, as early exposure strongly impacts career choices in the future. To help with that and to enable kids from all ages to behave safer online, we’ve developed the Minecraft Education Cybersecurity Collection, with levels that go from kindergarten to college and focus on teaching cyberskills at every level with fun, accessible lessons for the modern digital citizen, followed by learning resources.

This graphic shows the Minecraft Education Cybersecurity Collection games.

How AI is empowering a stronger workforce

The latest generative AI revolution has gotten plenty of people excited because of its potential to advance business initiatives, but there’s also a great potential impact of AI adoption in cybersecurity talent. Vasu Jakkal recently shared how AI can improve cybersecurity by harnessing diversity and offered other suggestions for how to encourage cybersecurity interest.6 Human ingenuity and expertise will always be a precious and irreplaceable component of security, and AI has the power to tip the scales in favor of cyber defenders by augmenting human capabilities, enabling machine speed cyberthreat detection, and fostering a stronger collective skillset of diverse backgrounds and points of view.

Among other things, generative AI also has the potential to expand the number of cybersecurity professionals and help them refine and strengthen their skills. Using AI tools in recruiting can also help “transcend biases, optimize talent acquisition, promote inclusive training and education,” and lead to more hiring of diverse candidates.7

Recognizing the increasing importance of AI skills in the global workforce, Microsoft has launched the AI Skills Initiative to enhance AI education and address emerging skills gaps. In partnership with LinkedIn, the initiative offers a Professional Certificate on Generative AI and the Generative AI Skills Grant Challenge, a collaboration with other organizations that focus on underserved communities.

Champion the advocacy to propel cybersecurity education and careers forward

There is a lot we all can do to support cybersecurity education and help narrow the skills gap. If you’re a security professional, consider being a sponsor for someone or supporting one of these many mentoring programs mentioned in this blog.

Many remain unaware of the vast opportunities awaiting them in cybersecurity, so we invite you to amplify these prospects to a broader audience. Check with your local area school if they have a TEALS program and let them know about the career path the Last Mile Education Fund offers. Amplify free cybersecurity content, training, and learning opportunities by earning a Microsoft and LinkedIn’s Career Essentials Certificate and show the wonders the Minecraft Cybersecurity education game can provide to the younger generation.

In the spirit of security being a team sport, explore our Cybersecurity Awareness Website to continue your education and to help educate your organization and community. It takes a village to make a difference in the lives of others and to support our cybersecurity professionals who tirelessly keep us safe. It is vital that no matter what role we play in our workplace, family or community, we all become a cyber defender.

Learn more

To learn more about cybersecurity best practices and educational opportunities, visit our Cybersecurity Awareness Website.

To learn more about Microsoft Security solutions, visit our website. Bookmark the Security blog to keep up with our expert coverage on security matters. Also, follow us on LinkedIn (Microsoft Security) and Twitter (@MSFTSecurity) for the latest news and updates on cybersecurity.

1Microsoft Digital Defense Report 2023, Microsoft.

2Cybersecurity Workforce Study, ISC2. 2022.

3Attracting Young Talent to the Growing Cybersecurity Industry, JonesPR. May 13, 2020.

4Empowering Women to Work in Cybersecurity Is a Win-Win, BCG. September 7, 2022.

5Results based on March 2022 IWD Survey commissioned by Microsoft in partnership with WE Communications.

6How AI can improve cybersecurity by harnessing diversity, according to Microsoft Security’s Vasu Jakkal, Dan Patterson. August 25, 2023.

7The Power of AI to Enhance Diversity in Security: Strengthening Defences through Inclusion, LinkedIn. July 2, 2023.

The post From classroom to cyberfront: Unlocking the potential of the next generation of cyber defenders  appeared first on Microsoft Security Blog.

05 Nov 21:19

M3, M3 Pro, Criticized In New Report, Base Apple Silicon ‘Doesn’t Move The Needle Considerably’ But M3 Max ‘Is Quite A Feat’

by Omar Sohail

Apple's latest M3, M3 Pro and M3 Max

Apple’s latest 3nm family of Mac chipsets include the M3, M3 Pro, and the M3 Max, and based on various performance tests and leaks, two of them are considered iterative updates over their direct predecessors, while one of them is viewed as a worthy upgrade. In a new report, the base SoC and the M3 Pro are largely criticized as they do not bring anything noteworthy. M3 Max performance compared to desktop chips like the M2 Ultra that power the Mac Studio and Mac Pro In the latest edition of Mark Gurman’s ‘Power On’ newsletter, the Bloomberg reporter provided his […]

Read full article at