Weekend tech reading: Why batteries degrade, a WWDC roundup, a backup guide and 4K reviews

By on June 1, 2014, 12:51 PM
wwdc, battery, lithium ion, batteries, 4k, wwdc 2014

Scientists discover the reason that batteries lose capacity over time: Nanocrystals! In the struggle to develop better batteries, it's the overall capacity that tends to get most of the attention -- we marvel when a new smartphone crams in a few more milliamp-hours. Capacity is nothing without the longevity to survive a large number of repeated charging cycles, though. Even the most advanced lithium-ion batteries still lose capacity as they age, and there's no way to prevent that until we know the cause, which we might thanks to two new studies from the US Department of Energy. ExtremeTech

Anonymous no more: Sabu walks On Tuesday afternoon, I went to lower Manhattan to see a longtime Internet acquaintance named Hector Monsegur. Meeting in real life someone whom you've previously known only through the Internet is a tricky and awkward affair, even under the best of circumstances. There were three additional complications to this particular encounter. The first: when Monsegur and I used to talk, via Internet Relay Chat, in 2011, I was a reporter for Gawker and only knew Monsegur as Sabu, the leader of the hacker collective LulzSec. The New Yorker

The challenge and saga of zombie pathfinding Our major focus has been on establishing the architecture, both in the team and in the game, in order to deliver best in the future. This involved us drastically increasing the size of the team working on the game. This had a severe short-term impact on our progress as our existing team had to devote time and resources to training and planning. The new zombie pathfinding is a good example of this approach beginning to produce results. Dean Hall

The mystery of Go, the ancient game that computers still can't win Rémi Coulom is sitting in a rolling desk chair, hunched over a battered Macbook laptop, hoping it will do something no machine has ever done. That may take another ten years or so, but the long push starts here, at Japan’s University of Electro-Communications. The venue is far from glamorous -- a dingy conference room with faux-wood paneling and garish fluorescent lights -- but there's still a buzz about the place. Wired

Pirate Bay co-founder arrested in Sweden to serve copyright violation sentence One of the founders of file-sharing website Pirate Bay has been arrested in southern Sweden to serve an outstanding sentence for copyright violations after being on the run for nearly two years, Swedish police said on Saturday. Peter Sunde had been wanted by Interpol since 2012 after being sentenced in Sweden to prison and fined for breaching copyright laws. Reuters

Averting disaster -- a guide to computer backups (2014) We all store more and more of our lives in digital form; spreadsheets, résumés, wedding speeches, novels, tax information, schedules, and of course digital photographs and video. All of this data is easy to store, transmit, copy, and share, but how easy is it to get back? All of this data can be a harsh reminder that computers are not without fault. AnandTech

WWDC 2014 roundup: Enhanced iOS 8, redesigned OS X 10.10, new hardware Despite Apple CEO Tim Cook teasing that Apple would introduce new products "across 2014," so far this year the company has simply released a cheaper version of the iPhone 5c in select markets, marginally faster MacBook Airs, and the 2012 fourth-generation iPad at a lower price. 9to5Mac

4K for $649: Asus' PB287Q monitor reviewed A couple of years ago, I got an energized, slightly crazy look in my eyes when folks in Korea started selling some truly gorgeous 27" IPS monitors on eBay for dirt cheap. Word spread quickly among PC enthusiasts about the visual glory that could be had for about 300 bucks. The Tech Report

Toshiba P50t review: So many pixels, too much bulk 4K has arrived; 4K has a long way to go. The next standard in TV and monitor resolutions has started to trickle into electronics showrooms, hoping to tantalize shoppers into taking a very, very high-res plunge, but the resolution standard doesn't come with much to watch. Ars Technica

N.S.A. collecting millions of faces from web images The National Security Agency is harvesting huge numbers of images of people from communications that it intercepts through its global surveillance operations for use in sophisticated facial recognition programs, according to top-secret documents. The NY Times

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