Netflix offers first look at de-aged De Niro in trailer for Scorsese’s The Irishman

Netflix offers first look at de-aged De Niro in trailer for Scorsese's The Irishman

It’s been a long time coming, but Netflix has finally dropped the first trailer for Martin Scorsese’s biggest crime epic to date, The Irishman, which is said to have cost upwards of $140 million (USD).

Based on the book ‘I Heard You Paint Houses’ by Charles Brandt, the film follows WWII veteran Frank Sheeran (Robert De Niro), a real-life hitman who was allegedly involved in the infamous disappearance of union boss Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino), which is a mystery that remains unsolved to this day. 

So why the huge budget? As the story takes place over the course of multiple decades, director Martin Scorsese (Goodfellas, Casino, Gangs of New York) and his team have employed expensive and cutting-edge de-aging technology to make some of its cast appear up to 30 years younger in certain sections of the film.

The extensive de-aging work can also be blamed for the long wait leading to the film’s release, with Scorsese’s longtime editor Thelma Schoonmaker telling Yahoo in February that the production is “youthifying the actors in the first half of the movie,” and that “the second half of the movie they play their own age. So that’s a big risk.”

Based on the trailer below, it certainly looks like Scorsese and Co. have pulled off the de-aging effect – we’ll know for sure when the film lands on Netflix and in theaters this US fall.



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Canon patents a lens cap you can’t possibly lose

Canon patents a lens cap you can't possibly lose


Any photographer worth their salt knows that at some point, they’re going to be losing lens caps – either while out in the field or somewhere at the bottom of their bag. Most of us have spares, but for those who don’t Canon may have an answer to your problems.

The Japanese camera manufacturer has recently filed a patent (number 2019-113645) in its home country for a barn door-like lens cap that simultaneously works as a lens hood as well.

First spotted by Canon Watch, the “invention works as a lens hood function at the time of shooting and as a lens protection function at the time of non-shooting, thus eliminating the need for lens cap attachment / removal and barrier opening / closing operations”.

(Image credit: Canon (via Canon Watch))

The idea behind Canon’s design is that it will be permanently attached to the lens, so losing another lens cap might be a thing of the past. 

However, Canon only uses the term “digital camera” in the patent, so whether the new lens cap design will make its way to the new RF-mount lenses or the older EF, EF-M or EF-S lenses remains to be seen. Instead, the patent seems to be for lenses with extending barrels that are typical for point-and-shoot snappers.

Nothing new

There have been solutions for the lost lens cap problem in the past – Canon is by no means the first company to try and solve this issue.

The Olympus LC-63A lens cap has been around for a very long time now, and was designed to fit on the XZ-1 and XZ-2 compact cameras. It’s attached to the lens barrel via a screw mount and automatically opens and shuts when using a button on the camera itself.

For those of us with multiple lenses for DSLRs or mirrorless cameras, Kuvrd (as in ‘covered’) launched a very successful Kickstarter campaign in 2017 for a silicone-based one-size-fits-all lens cap that claimed to be waterproof, dirt-proof, shock-absorbent, portable and malleable, but it wasn’t designed to be permanently attached to the lens itself.

While Canon’s design is still just a patent, it would be nice to see a major manufacturer provide a solution to a common problem that most photographers face.



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Mississippi Bans Meat-Related Names for Vegetarian Product Labels

Mississippi Bans Meat-Related Names for Vegetarian Product Labels


Source: miikkahoo, “Veggie Burger with Zucchini/Feta/Pea Patty,” wikimedia.org, June 13, 2018

A new law in Mississippi (SB 2922) bans the use of certain descriptive words traditionally associated with meat products on labels for vegetarian and vegan plant-based products. As of July 1, 2019, words such as “burger” and “hot dog” can only be used if the product is made of animal meat. That means the name “veggie burger” is no longer permitted on labels for plant-based patties. The ban also applies to food made from insects and meats made in a lab from cultured animal cells (as opposed to slaughtered livestock).

Andy Berry, Mississippi Cattlemen’s Association Executive Vice President, stated last year, “We’re concerned about how those products are labeled… People have a choice, and we don’t want them to be mislead or maybe even tricked into buying something that is ‘meat’ that has no meat in it.” The new law is meant to protect consumers from confusion and manufacturers from unfair competition with plant-based products, according to proponents.

The ban is being challenged in court by the Institute for Justice and the Plant Based Foods Association, among other groups. Missouri passed a similar law in 2018, which is also being challenged in court as a First Amendment violation by groups including the Good Food Institute and the ACLU.

Jessica Almy, Director of Policy at the Good Food Institute, said, “There is no evidence that consumers are confused by plant-based bacon or veggie burger labels, and federal laws are already in place that prohibits consumer deception. This law is a tremendous overstep of state powers.”

Mississippi Agriculture Commissioner Andy Gipson defended the law, saying, “It’s not a free speech violation to require the truth in consumer products. And to claim that something is meat that isn’t meat is not true.”

A US District Court in California previously ruled that consumers were not being tricked into mistaking plant-based products for animal-based products in a 2013 case regarding the use of the word “milk.” The ruling stated, “The crux of the claims is that a reasonable consumer might confuse plant-based beverages such as soymilk or almond milk for dairy milk, because of the use of the word ‘milk.’ The Court finds such confusion highly improbable because of the use of the words ‘soy’ and ‘almond.’ Plaintiffs essentially allege that a reasonable consumer would view the terms ‘soymilk’ and ‘almond milk,’ disregard the first words in the names, and assume that the beverages came from cows. The claim stretches the bounds of credulity.”

Vegan and vegetarian products have come under labeling scrutiny in other places as well. In Canada, Blue Heron Creamery can no longer use the word “cheese” for their plant-based dairy-free products as of Feb. 2019. Words like Cheddar and chèvre are also prohibited. A German court ruled similarly against cheese-substitute manufacturer TofuTown in 2016. In the European Union, “veggie burgers” may soon be called “veggie discs” following the European parliament’s agriculture committee approval of a ban on using meat-related terminology on vegetarian food.

Sales of plant-based “meats” increased 42% from 2016 to 2019; the market for these products is worth an estimated $12.1 billion in 2019 and could reach $27.9 billion by 2025. Beyond Meat, a plant-based food manufacturer, almost doubled its net revenue from $32.6 million in 2017 to $87.9 million in 2018. Fast food restaurants such as Burger King and Del Taco now offer plant-based “fake meat” substitutes in some locations.

 


Sources:

AP, “Mississippi Lawmakers Have Real Fears about ‘Fake Meat,'” wreg.com, Mar. 4, 2019

Daniel Boffey, “‘Veggie Discs’ to Replace Veggie Burgers in EU Crackdown on Food Labels,” theguardian.com, Apr. 4, 2019

CaseText.com, “Ang v. Whitewave Foods Co.,” casetext.com, Dec. 10, 2013

Melissa Kravitz, “Should Plant-Based Proteins Be Called ‘Meat,'” salon.com, Dec. 22, 2018

LegiScan, “Mississippi Senate Bill 2922 (Adjourned Sine Die),” legiscan.com (accessed July 8, 2019)

Baylen Linnekin, “Mississippi Sued for Awful ‘Veggie Burger’ Ban,” reason.com, July 6, 2019

Alex Lowery, “Fake Meat Bill Passes House, Heads to Senate,” msfb.org, Jan. 25, 2019

Bettina Makalintal, “Vegan Creamery Can’t Call Its Product ‘Cheese’ Anymore,” vice.com, Feb. 21, 2019

MarketsandMarkets, “Plant-based Meat Market Worth $27.9 Billion by 2025 – Exclusive Report by MarketsandMarkets™,” prnewswire.com, May 23, 2019

Niamh Michail, “German Court Rules against ‘Vegan Cheese’- but What Should Plant-Based ‘Alternatives’ Be Called?,” dairyreporter.com, Apr. 28, 2016

Sarah Min, “Beyond Meat Stock Price More than Doubles as Fake Meat Company Goes Public,” cbsnews.com, May 2, 2019

Sarah Min, “Fake-meat Fans Sue Mississippi over Labeling Rules for ‘Meat,'” cbsnews.com, July 3, 2019

Kelsey Piper, “Mississippi Is Forbidding Grocery Stores from Calling Veggie Burgers ‘Veggie Burgers,'” vox.xom, July 3, 2019

Kate Welsh, “Vegan ‘Meat’ Shouldn’t Be Called Meat, According to Meat Lobby,” myrecipes.com, Feb. 7, 2018



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How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere

How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere


All Elite Wrestling continues to grab attention as it looks to body slam the all-powerful WWE. AEW Fight for the Fallen comes hot on the heels of grapple extravaganzas Double or Nothing and Fyter Fest. You can see all the action tonight with our guide to watch AEW Fight for the Fallen online for FREE.

AEW Fight for the Fallen – when and where?

AEW Fight for the Fallen will be held at the 5,500-capacity Daily’s Place Amphitheater at TIAA Bank Field in Downtown Jacksonville, Florida.

It’s due to get started at 8pm ET local time – so that’s 5.30pm PT. And if you’re overseas, you can base the time on 1.30am BST.

It’s another impressively stacked card for the fledgling wrestling company, with the main event set to be a tag team match pitting The Young Bucks against Cody & Dustin Rhodes.

British wrestling fans will be keeping an eye out for star Bea Priestley, who is set to make her AEW debut when she teams up with fellow debutant, Shoko Nakajima, to take on Britt Baker and Riho.

Elsewhere, former WWE legend Chris Jericho is billed to make an appearance in some form ahead of his  World Championship match against ‘Hangman’ Adam Page at AEW All Out on August 31. There’s a serious side to the event, with the proceeds of the event going towards victims of gun violence.

Wherever you are in the world, we’ll show you how to watch AEW Fight for the Fallen live online so that you don’t miss a single second of tonight’s action.

Live stream AEW Fight for the Fallen from outside your country

Scroll down if you’re reading this in the US, Canada or UK – we’ve described you’re watching options in more detail down there.

But if you’re abroad this weekend and unlucky enough to be in a country where the only way to catch the wrestling is via some dodgy, illegal stream you’ve found on Reddit – or if you discover your home coverage is geo-blocked where you are – then we have a top tip to get a much better way to watch.

How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere

Virtual Private Networks are also handy if you’re concerned about streaming safely on the web, thanks to the encryption they use to hide your details. And the best won’t log your personal information, either. We’ve tested hundreds of VPNs and can recommend these as the best VPN options currently available:

1. Express VPN (comes with a 30 day money back guarantee) Simply put, this is our pick as the #1 VPN in the world right now. You can watch on many devices at once including Smart TVs, Fire TV Stick, PC, Mac, iPhone, Android phone, iPads, tablets etc. Check out Express VPN and get 3 months FREE on an annual plan and 49% off the price.

2. NordVPN: SmartPlay tech makes NordVPN a great, affordable choice for streaming

3. IPVanish supports up to 10 devices, so great on the go

How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere

How to watch AEW Fight for the Fallen: USA live stream

The pre-card for Fight for the Fallen kicks off at 7.30pm and will be broadcast on B/R Live as well as the official All Elite Wrestling YouTube page.

The great news for wrestling fans in the US is that the main card will be streamed for free on Bleacher Report Live (B/R Live). 

To get access to the live stream, you’ll have to sign up for an account but considering the promotion’s inaugural event Double or Nothing was a $50 PPV, this seems like a pretty sweet deal. Once you’ve setup an account, you’ll be able to watch AEW FFight for the Fallen for free on PC, mobile, Roku, Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV.

How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere

How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere

How to get a AEW Fight for the Fallen live stream in Canada

AEW didn’t forget about Canada and just like in the US, Fight for the Fallen will be streamed for free on B/R Live. You’ll need to sign up for an account but once you do, you’ll be able to watch the event in its entirety on your favorite streaming devices, your smartphone and on PC.

How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere

How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere

How to watch the Fight for the Fallen AEW PPV in the UK

Unfortunately if you’re in the UK and want to watch tonight’s event, you’ll have to pay. 

Thankfully its not too hefty a price – the entire card will  be available to stream live on FITE.TV for a pretty reasonable £8.99.

How to watch Fight for the Fallen: live stream the AEW PVV online from anywhere



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It's time for energy freedom in Alabama

It's time for energy freedom in Alabama



Alabama is ranked 13th in the nation as having the greatest solar potential, yet only 0.26% of its energy comes from solar, leaving the state far behind others when it comes to total installed solar capacity. According to an annual report produced by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), Alabama ranked 29th in the United States for solar production in 2018. Solar in the Southeast, a blog dedicated to highlighting the ever-growing southeastern solar market, reported Alabama as ranking dead last in the seven-state southeastern region. By failing to adopt more solar, and other clean energy technologies, Alabama is missing out on lower energy prices, increased jobs in the solar economy, cleaner air and water, and a more resilient power infrastructure that protects our communities.



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Study reveals ISP-supplied broadband modems under-performing

Study reveals ISP-supplied broadband modems under-performing

The NBN is pushing to make 50Mbps download speeds (and 20Mbps upload) the norm in Australia, but many customers are opting for the 100Mbps speed tier when they sign up for a new connection. However, if you find you aren’t able to get those speeds, it may be the fault of your broadband modem.

A new study commissioned by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has revealed that several ISP-supplied modems are incapable of handling 100Mbps speeds on a fibre-to-the-node/building (FTTN/FTTB) connection.

The study has also found that several of these modems have poor Wi-Fi performance, further lowering the average download speeds the end user can expect.

If you can’t speed it up…

43 modems from 11 manufacturers and 10 ISPs were tested in laboratory conditions during December and January as part of the study – conducted by commercial testing firm Enex TestLab – and not one was able to deliver 100Mbps download speeds over a 450m copper stretch (the average length of copper on an FTTN connection). 

Most devices could only deliver 80% of the advertised speed.

In terms of Wi-Fi performance, 30% of the modems were unable to achieve 100Mbps on 2.4GHz over a range of 5m, which is unexpected as 2.4GHz is touted as the better option for long-range communication. Instead, tests showed that 5GHz Wi-Fi outperformed 2.4GHz.

With walls coming in the way of Wi-Fi signals, the study found that 26% of the modems tested could achieve 10Mbps download speeds on the 2.4GHz Wi-Fi band, while 40% hit 80Mbps when using 5GHz Wi-Fi.

So if you find your Wi-Fi connection isn’t delivering the speeds you’re paying for, and you’re using a modem supplied by your ISP, you may want to switch bands to 5GHz.

Not enough advice

Only one modem out of the 43 was outright rejected for use on any NBN connection – that was the Linksys X6200 AC750.

Commenting on the results of the study, ACMA’s chair Nerida O’Loughlin said, “Telcos and modem suppliers need to provide good advice to consumers about the features and performance of individual modems, especially Wi-Fi performance.”

She advised consumers to question their chosen ISPs about “the performance they can expect from the modem supplied” before signing up for a new connection.



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Climate Change Threatens 38% of World’s Primates

Climate Change Threatens 38% of World's Primates


A ring-tailed lemur eats grass. This primate is endangered and lives in Madagascar.

A June 17, 2019 study published in Nature Climate Change found that 38% of primates are threatened by climate change, including lemurs, langurs, and orangutans.

The researchers found that these animals are threatened by extreme weather conditions caused by rising temperatures related to climate change. 16% of the primates are endangered by cyclones, especially those in Madagascar, and 22% are endangered by droughts, especially in the Malaysia Peninsula, North Borneo, Sumatra, and West Africa.

Among the 607 types of primates examined by the peer-reviewed study, 100 types were vulnerable to cyclones, 134 were impacted by droughts, and 19 were troubled by both cyclones and drought.

Over 90% of the primates threatened by cyclones and 65% of those vulnerable to drought were listed as “threatened with extinction” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. Twenty-three species impacted by cyclones are “critically endangered,” and 26 are vulnerable to drought.

The study stated, “As the pressures exerted by extreme climatic events on primates are not preventable or controllable, it is critical to maintain primate populations’ resilience to catastrophic mortality and habitat loss caused by these events.” Ways to do this include creating sustainable land-use projects to limit conflicts between primate and humans and strategies to improve human living conditions to reduce illegal hunting of primates.

 



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Cybercrooks built their own VPN to hack into global telcos

Cybercrooks built their own VPN to hack into global telcos

Cybercriminals have managed to infiltrate over a dozen mobile carriers around the world and gain complete control of their networks without their knowledge according to new research from Cybereason.

Last year, the Cybereason Nocturnus team discovered an advanced, persistent attack targeting global telecommunications providers carried out by a threat actor using tools and techniques commonly associated with the Chinese-affiliated threat actor APT10. These bad actors still control the network today and have even built a VPN for their convenience.

The security firm detailed its findings in a new report titled Operation Soft Cell: A worldwide campaign against telecommunications providers which explains how hackers targeted phone providers in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. The hackers have been infecting multiple mobile carriers since 2012 and they used their control of these networks to steal hundreds of gigabytes of data on customers.

Head of security research at Cybereason, Amit Serper explained that the cybercriminals behind these attacks also have highly privileged access in addition to customer data, saying:

“They have all the usernames and passwords, and created a bunch of domain privileges for themselves, with more than one user. They can do whatever they want. Since they have such access, they could shut down the network tomorrow if they wanted to.” 

Operation Soft Cell

According to Cybereason, no US mobile carriers were affected by the attacks but since the campaign has yet to be shutdown, this could possibly change in the future.

The cybercriminals responsible did have the power to disrupt the networks they infiltrated but instead chose to use their access for espionage as opposed to disruption. Once access was gained to a mobile carriers’ internal servers, the attackers were able to access customer records including geolocation data, call logs and text message records.

Despite having access to data on millions of people, the hackers instead chose to only steal data from fewer than 100 targeted victims. Vice president of security practices at Cybereason, Mor Levi believes that they likely targeted high-profile victims from governments and militaries around the world.

According to the firm’s research, the attackers exploited older vulnerabilities to gain access to over a dozen mobile carriers around the world. They then used their access to create accounts for themselves with escalated privileges and hid among the infected mobile carriers actual staff.

The sophisticated and targeted nature of the attack has led Cybereason to believe that the attackers were backed by a nation-state namely China as digital forensics point to the country’s elite hacking group APT10 being behind the attacks.

The potential implications of an attack this large that went on for so long are tremendous and we’ll likely learn more as Cybereason, the affected mobile carriers and governments around the world investigate the matter further.

  • Keep your devices protected from the latest cyber threats with the best antivirus

Via CNET



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