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Monday, December 22

FCC hits again pause on clock for TWC-Comcast merger

In spite of Comcast CEO Brian Roberts' assertions earlier this month that the merger with Time Warner Cable (TWC) is going along smoothly, the FCC has paused the informal 180-day clock on its investigation into the merger, due to a total of roughly 38,000 documents submitted by TWC beyond its deadline, and after the FCC had believed it was finished with that part of its investigation into the merger....

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North Korea refutes US hacking accusations, endures Internet outage

North Korea has declared it will strike against the United States, after the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) identified the rogue state as the origin of the Sony Pictures hack. However, alongside the sabre-rattling statement provided by the Korean Central News Agency of DPRK (the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, as it calls itself) are reports that the country's Internet connection has itself been the tar...

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Pirate Bay P2P site showing signs of life

Earlier this month, Swedish law-enforcement raided The Pirate Bay's servers and were able to knock the venerable torrent aggregator offline. Earlier today, the domain moved to a new IP address, and displayed a fluttering Jolly Roger pirate flag only. Now, the flag waves in the background as a clock counts down to January 5, 2015. While one of the original co-founders applauded the takedown, acolytes made sure that no...

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Tor network servers experience outage after leaked warnings

Last Friday, the Tor Project blog posted about a possible threat that some of its servers would be seized in an attempt to incapacitate or hijack the Tor network. Over the weekend, a group of "exit node" servers in a Dutch datacenter went down, and then came back online. The service, a volunteer network of relays aiming to provide anonymity and security, says it was warned of suspicious activity that may have been in...

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First Look: Google Nexus 6

The Google Nexus 6 is the latest Android flagship smartphone from Google and, like each one before it, it is designed to showcase the latest developments on its Android platform. Indisputably and unapologetically a "phablet," the device centers on a gargantuan 5.96-inch QHD AMOLED display, and comes pre-installed with Android 5.0 "Lollipop." It truly challenges the boundaries of what users are prepared to carry aroun...

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Samsung reveals 34-inch curved monitor with 3440x1440 resolution

Samsung has introduced another curved monitor, one that increases the size and resolution of the manufacturer's earlier release, the 27-inch SD590C in September. The SE790C curved monitor boasts a larger 34-inch size, combined with an Ultra WQHD resolution of 3440x1440, an aspect ratio of 21:9, and a contrast ratio of 3000:1. ...

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Hands On: Combat Mission: Battle for Normandy (OS X, Windows)

Let's start by getting one thing straight: Combat Mission: Battle for Normandy is not designed for the casual gamer. It is an extremely detailed affair, that has been designed to create a fairly accurate replication of war on the Normandy battlefield. Combat Mission is not a game of quick rushes and gathering resources, but instead requires players to thoughtfully plan out their military tactics one step at a time. I...

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Apple supplier Pegatron promises to investigate labor abuses

Apple supplier Pegatron has issued a statement to the Taiwan Stock Exchange, promising to investigate and fix labor abuses uncovered through a recently-aired BBC documentary. The company states that worker safety is its top priority, and that it runs strict training for both regular workers and management. It also notes the use of external inspectors in audits -- presumably referring to the teams used by Apple -- and...

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Monday Deals: Gigabit routers, Ultra HD television, games, more

Welcome to Monday Deals, and let's face it, Christmas is upon us -- there's not really enough time to buy gifts online and receive them in time for the big day. Maybe you, the discerning MacNN and Electronista reader, want to use your leftover present-buying cash to get yourself a little or not-so-little something, for all that hard work buying for other people. As usual, prices are correct at the time of writing, bu...

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12-inch MacBook Air entering production early next year, report says

Production of Apple's rumored 12-inch MacBook Air -- along with the Apple Watch -- should enter mass production in the first quarter of 2014, supply chain sources tell Digitimes. Suppliers are allegedly beginning to accelerate work on related components. The new Air is expected to have an Intel Broadwell processor, and an even thinner and lighter design....

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Boeing working with BlackBerry on Black smartphone security

BlackBerry is helping Boeing with developing its Black smartphone, it has been revealed. The smartphone from the defense and aerospace producer, previously reported to be a tamper-proof device capable of wiping stored data in the event of anyone attempting to open it, will now use BlackBerry's software platform to provide an extra layer of security. ...

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Holiday Gift Guide -- gifts for gamers

Gamers can be very selective in the types of things they want for the holidays, but Electronista and MacNN are offering some hints on gadgets that should appeal to any gamer on the shopping list. From smaller items that enhance play on consoles and computers, to a tablet that allows gamers the ultimate on-the-go experience, our gaming gift guide should prepare shoppers for the upcoming season....

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Staples confirms attack on retail system, over 1M credit cards stolen

An intrusion into Staples' point-of-sales systems earlier this year put 1.16 million credit and debit cards at risk, the retailer admitted on Friday. Approximately 115 of the company's 1,400 retail stores across the United States were affected by malware on its systems, though the store apparently managed to eradicate the malware and improve system security in mid-September. ...

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Fox News channels pulled from Dish Network as negotiations fail

A stand-off between Dish Network and 21st Century Fox has led to two channels being dropped from Dish customers' program guides. Fox News and Fox Business are no longer being offered for viewing by the satellite TV broadcaster, with the two companies apparently failing to agree on the terms of a new distribution contract. ...

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Briefly: LG G2 Android Lollipop leak, Virgin Atlantic free tablets

The Android Lollipop upgrade may reach the LG G2, if a leaked screenshot is to be believed. According to TuttoAndroid, the screenshot is said to show the G2 as running Android 5.0.1, with part of the screenshot showing a new, flatter user interface in line with Material Design principles. No date for the update has been provided -- but if the image is genuine, it could start reaching phones as early as January next y...

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Sunday, December 21

Weekly Game Replay: Valve's handling of Hatred, Telltale's Minecraft

Every Sunday, Electronista and MacNN put together a one-stop article for some of the major news in the video game industry in the past week. In this week's edition of the Weekly Game Replay, we look at Valve's handling of Hatred on Steam Greenlight, Mojang and Telltale Games team up for a narrative-based Minecraft game, a judge gives the go-ahead on a Killzone resolution lawsuit, World of Warcraft is exploring in-gam...

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Obama: Sony hack not act of war; Anonymous promises attacks on NK

In an interview recorded on Friday, President Obama clarified his remarks last week regarding the Sony Pictures hack. The president denies swirling discussions about the hack being an act of war, and called it "an act of cyber vandalism that was very costly, very expensive." Additionally, late Sunday, tweets purport that hacker collective Anonymous is about to wade into the fray against North Korea for its role in th...

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Saturday, December 20

Friday Deals: Ultra HD monitor, Game and console bundles, more [U]

[Updated with more deals!] There is less than a week until Christmas, and depending on where you live, approximately four days available for deliveries of presents. If there are more presents to get before the big day, you're likely to be spending a lot on quicker deliveries, so why not even out the cost by getting some great Friday Deals? Every Friday afternoon, we search for bargains on hardware, peripherals, gadge...

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BlackBerry creeping closer to profit with $148 million quarterly loss

Cellphone manufacturer BlackBerry has published its most recent quarterly results. While the company is trumpeting a return to profitability, it still incurred a fair value debenture charge, forcing the company to post a $148 million loss on the quarter, or $0.28 per share. Without the debenture, it would have posted a modest profit of $2 million. While it appears that the cost-cutting measures are starting to pay of...

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Judge completely denies HP's Autonomy buy class action suit settlement

A US district judge in San Francisco has outright rejected HP's settlement offer to settle the Autonomy acquisition class action suit in the US. Saying that "the shareholders appear to be relinquishing a whole universe of potential claims regarding HP governance and practices," Judge Charles Breyer has kicked the settlement back to the plaintiffs without suggestions for recovery. The matter is now likely to head to t...

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Google sues MPAA-driven Attorney General, Hood calls for 'time out'

Google has launched its own legal effort to stop Mississippi State Attorney General Jim Hood's effort with the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) to pin the search engine as the cause of the world's piracy problem. Google claims in the court filing in Mississippi's district court that Hood has filed a "burdensome, retaliatory" subpoena against it, which would require a massive financial and labor effort to ...

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NK demands joint Sony hack investigation; Sony pulls movie promos

North Korea has verbally fired back at allegations that it is behind the Sony Pictures attack. Calling the recent FBI statement identifying the country as the culprit "groundless slander," the country is demanding a joint investigation into the hack, with the country's experts and US law enforcement working side-by-side. If the US should refuse, North Korea's foreign ministry promised "grave consequences," presumably...

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Halo studio giving ODST, free month of Live to compensate for issues

Microsoft game studio 343 Industries has spelled out a compensation package for users affected by the matchmaking flaws that Halo: The Master Chief Collection has been plagued with since launch. The package includes Halo 3 adjunct title ODST, which was not expected to be released, a remastered multiplayer map, a month of Xbox Live service, and a character nameplate for use in-game....

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