Samsung responds to Galaxy S8 iris scanner hack

first_imgStory Timeline5 million Galaxy S8 units sold in less than a monthGalaxy S8 and S8+ will get Google Daydream support this summerGalaxy S8 claimed faster than iPhone 7 in battery of testsHow to disable apps in Android on the Galaxy S8 A couple of days back, we got word that a group of developers had found a way around the Galaxy S8‘s iris scanner. According to the folks at Chaos Computer Clubs, the iris scanner in the Galaxy S8 can be beaten with a high-resolution, infrared photo of the iris in question with a contact lens laid over it. That, obviously, is a pretty discouraging bit of news, but now Samsung has responded to this report. READ MORE: Samsung Galaxy S8 ReviewIn a statement made to NFC World, Samsung says reassures users that such a workaround is difficult to pull off and that most users shouldn’t worry. Though the video posted online by CCC makes the process of beating the iris scanner seem like a fairly easy undertaking, Samsung maintains that it is not.“We were aware of the report, but would like to assure our customers that the iris scanning technology in the Galaxy S8 has been developed through rigorous testing to provide a high level of accuracy and prevent against attempts to compromise its security, such as images of a person’s iris,” a Samsung representative said.“The reporter’s claims could only have been made under a rare combination of circumstances. It would require the unlikely situation of having possession of the high-resolution image of the smartphone owner’s iris with IR camera, a contact lens and possession of the smartphone at the same time.”center_img Furthermore, Samsung says that in its own testing, it found that replicating the result was “extremely difficult.” The company ended its statement by reassuring that if workarounds like this expose potential vulnerabilities in its iris scanning software, it will act quickly in fixing them. For the moment, though, it sounds like Samsung doesn’t consider this workaround to be a significant threat.Still, if this whole thing leaves you feeling a little uneasy about using the Galaxy S8’s iris scanner, you might want to switch to a PIN or pattern lock. Assuming you don’t tell anyone what your PIN or pattern is, those can offer a similar level of security. Failing those, there’s always the fingerprint scanner, awkwardly placed though it may be. We’ll see if any more information about iris scanner workarounds comes to light, so stay tuned.SOURCE: NFC Worldlast_img read more

Xbox Watch handson shows what should have never been

first_imgGranted, this is just a prototype, but a working one at that. It’s familiar design, similar to the first generation of Android smartwatches back in the day, suggests this could have been the final retail design. And just like the very first Android smartwatches, it was clunky, ugly, and unappealing.And that was just the hardware. Software-wise, the Xbox Watch had a user interface composed of a scrolling row of squares, showing off Microsoft’s obsession with boxes. There isn’t much installed here and nothing works beyond the first tap. Actually, the smartwatch barely worked at all and the video below is a testament to the leakster’s patience at keeping the wearable powered on. Microsoft is known for crushing dreams of things that could have been. It is also known for putting out products that perhaps it should never have. The latter calls to mind the Zune, Windows Vista, and Windows RT. And, perhaps, this Xbox Watch that has popped up yet again. Dropped before it could take final form, what could have been Microsoft’s first smartwatch seemed to be ready for production. Perhaps it was for the best that it didn’t make it that far. Microsoft eventually launched its own wearable, but one that didn’t compete directly with smartwatches. At least not in design. Unfortunately, the Microsoft Band didn’t last that long, but this Xbox Watch would have probably died within just months.AdChoices广告Story TimelineThis is what the Xbox Watch could have looked likeThe Xbox Watch nobody asked for has leakedlast_img read more

Why the OnePlus 6T works with TMobile Verizon while Huawei ban remains

Above you’ll see a gallery of images captured on the 29th of October, 2018. These are the current details applied to the OnePlus 6T deal with T-Mobile USA as mentioned above.What’s the price of a OnePlus 6T phone?There are three models of the OnePlus 6T, two with 128GB internal storage, two with 8GB RAM, one with 6GB RAM. The least expensive has 6GB RAM and 128GB internal storage, that device will cost $549. The next is the 8GB RAM, 128GB version for $579. The most extravagant version of the OnePlus 6T has 8GB RAM and 256GB internal storage, and it’ll cost $629 USD. Does OnePlus 6T work with Verizon?The OnePlus 6T is officially compatible with Verizon’s 4G LTE network. Verizon issued official certification for the OnePlus 6T this week. The difference between Verizon and T-Mobile for the OnePlus 6T is the physical sale of the phone will only occur in T-Mobile, not Verizon. You can buy a OnePlus 6T from OnePlus unlocked and bring it to Verizon, if you wish, but you can’t buy a OnePlus 6T directly from Verizon.Why is Huawei banned but OnePlus 6T isn’t?Not too long ago, Huawei phones were carried by and had plans to expand coverage with more than one US mobile carrier. In the events that occurred over the past year, it became clear that the US intelligence community had reason to distrust Huawei for what they suggested was the potential for Chinese government-sponsored spying.The reason Huawei is different from OnePlus in this respect is its choice of processor. Because the OnePlus 6T has a Qualcomm system-on-chip, the US government has no reason to distrust its abilities. OnePlus and Huawei may both be China-based, but Huawei makes their own processors. This leaves the potential for distrust amongst the US intelligence community – and in turn stops them from official US mobile carrier coverage.Where can I buy OnePlus 6T?Users will find the OnePlus 6T at one of 5600 T-Mobile USA carrier locations – you might want to call ahead to make sure your local store has the OnePlus 6T before you make the trip. You can also attain the OnePlus 6T online at OnePlus dot com. You can find more information about this release in our OnePlus 6T official release date and pricing details article.Stick around for our first impressions, hands-on, and full review, coming up quick! This smartphone’s headed to stores immediately, so we’ll be quick on the trigger too! Today was a monumental day for OnePlus. With the OnePlus 6T, the company gets their first US mobile carrier release (with T-Mobile USA) at the same time as they have official Verizon certification. Today we’re running down a few facts about the OnePlus 6T, including how it’ll work with what carrier and why it’s not banned like another China-based smartphone maker called Huawei. Does T-Mobile USA carry the OnePlus 6T?Yes, as of 5PM Eastern Time, October 29th, 2018, the Times Square T-Mobile store officially carries the OnePlus 6T. As of November 1st, 2018, around 5600 T-Mobile locations across the United States will carry the OnePlus 6T. There’s basically no delay for this phone between ordering and availability thanks in a large part to T-Mobile USA’s interest. Does T-Mobile have deals on the OnePlus 6T?Sort of. There’s a significant list of smartphones users can trade in for approximately $300 in credit toward a OnePlus 6T. That list includes basically every recent iPhone and major Samsung phone, as well as a few big name phones from other manufacturers. Otherwise the price of the OnePlus 6T is the same at T-Mobile USA as it is online from OnePlus. AdChoices广告 Story TimelineOnePlus 6T passes Verizon certification, sources sayOnePlus 6T release date and pricing officialOnePlus 6T pop-up events start today: Here’s where and whenOnePlus 6T release day details official read more

Gboard gets GIF sticker and emoji suggestions on Android

first_imgGboard allows users to share GIFs, stickers, and emojis. As of today, Android users in particular will get relevant suggestions for all three content types, all of them thanks to Google’s AI and its ability to intelligently pick options based on the conversation.According to Google, Gboard users will see a “GIF” icon appear in the upper left corner of the mobile keyboard when a relevant option is available. By tapping that, users will see various GIFs, stickers, and emoji that Google’s tech thinks is related to the current topic.Someone who receives the message “Good morning,” for example, may see a GIF suggestion related to mornings, such as a greeting or pictures of breakfast food. Google provides other examples, such as a suggested “sleepy” emoji when the user types the phrase, “I’m tired.” The app processes these suggestions on the user’s device, which Google says is a way to help make sure the recommended content is kept private. Only the English language is supported by the new functionality for now, but Google will add more languages in the future. As well, the company indicates that it may one day add other content suggestion formats. Google has updated its Gboard mobile keyboard with a new feature: GIF suggestions. These looped video and animation clips have become a popular way to communicate a thought or emotion digitally, but finding the right GIF can be tricky. Google’s artificial intelligence technology will help solve that problem by offering relevant options for any conversation.last_img read more

Google Photos private album limit increased to 20000 images and videos

first_imgThough the initial 10,000 limitation was still very generous, it wasn’t compatible with the needs of many users. The addition of Google Photos Live Albums, which amass content across categories like pets and people, also had the same limitation, causing them to max out and stop adding new content for heavy Google Photos users.Given that Live Albums automatically retrieve images that fall within its categories, it’s easy to see how some users — particularly those storing and scanning old physical photographs — may have easily reached the maximum limit. Once the limit was reached, the albums stopped pulling new content, which makes them less than useful for Google’s goal of simplifying finding images.These Live Albums still have a maximum limitation, but it has been increased to 20,000, which is massive and far beyond the needs of many people. Though some users will probably still manage to hit the limitation over time, it brings the threshold in line with the maximum limitation already present on shared albums.The move follows a recent tweak to Google Photos’ unlimited free storage: it no longer includes unsupported video formats. The change was quietly made in recent days likely as a way to crackdown on abuse of the platform. As of now, unsupported videos will count against the user’s Drive storage space. Google is back with another Google Photos change, this one involving the number of images and videos that can be saved in a single private album. Unlike now, users were limited to 10,000 pieces of content in these private albums, which some users complained was too low. Google has doubled that limitation as of today, giving users the option of storing up to 20,000 videos and images in an album. Story TimelineGoogle Photos for iOS gets portrait mode depth editingGoogle Photos Express backup is something you might want as wellGoogle Photos ends unlimited free storage for unsupported videoslast_img read more

Hasbro reveals NERF Soldier 76 Blaster and wearable visor

first_imgStory TimelineHearthstone card nerfs and HoF: No more even, no more odd!Epic nerfs Fortnite Burst SMG structure damage for some reasonFortnite NERF Rocket Launcher gets an early limited release Hasbro is expanding its lineup of Blaster products based on weapons from popular video games. The company has unveiled the NERF Overwatch Soldier 76 Blaster, which is styled as the primary weapon wielded by Overwatch‘s Solider 76 character. Joining the Blaster is a wearable visor resembling the one donned by the video game solider. Hasbro has released a large number of Hasbro items, including previous toy firearms styled after the futuristic weapons in Overwatch. At present, Hasbro already offers the Reaper Collection Pack, which includes a Reaper mask and dual foam-shooting Blasters. Joining that is the hot pink D.Va Blaster featuring the character’s iconic bunny chain combined with a recoil action and 90 fps velocity.As well, Hasbro already offers the McCree replica revolver Blaster alongside a die cast badge; this weapon’s unique element includes a swing-open barrel with a spinning spur just like a real rifle. Finally, there’s also the considerably smaller NERF MicroShots foam dart toy based on the character’s Torbjorn’s weapon. The toy company is expanding this lineup with a new — and quite gigantic — NERF Blaster inspired by Soldier 76’s rifle. This product is unique, however, in that it is a GameStop exclusive. Overwatch fans who want to expand their collection can pre-order this item from the retailer’s website for $129.99 USD.According to Hasbro, the NERF Blaster has a 30-dart capacity and is fully motorized with rapid-fire capabilities. The Blaster shoots foam darts at 90 feet per second, includes illuminated lights, and issues an recoil action with each shot. The targeting visor is simply a stylish replica of the in-game element.last_img read more

2020 Toyota Supra official Firstlook at an icon reborn

first_imgAfter all the teasing, the leaks, the speculation, and the controversy, the 2020 Toyota Supra is here. Making its world debut at the Detroit Auto Show 2019, the all-new Supra marks the return of an iconic nameplate and an aggressive collaboration between Toyota and BMW. It also promises to be the first Toyota in some time that you’ll really, really want to drive. The Supra 3.0 gets a 6.5-inch non-touch display atop the center console, with a rotary controller, Bluetooth, and iPod connectivity. Step up to the Supra 3.0 Premium, meanwhile, and you get an 8.8-inch touchscreen with navigation, Supra Connect telematics, wireless Apple CarPlay support, wireless phone charging, and a 12-speaker JBL Audio system. Active safety tech includes forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane departure warnings with steering assist, auto-high-beams, and road sign assist as standard. 2020 Toyota Supra Launch EditionFirst out of the gate will be the 2020 Supra Launch Edition. Only 1,500 will be produced for the US, each individually numbered with a badge on the dashboard and a graphic of Master Driver Akio Toyoda’s signature. The core trim will be based on the Supra 3.0 Premium spec.They’ll come in either Absolute Zero White, Nocturnal Black, or Renaissance Red 2.0, each with high-contrast red mirror caps and 19-inch forged matte black alloy wheels. The white and black cars will have red interiors, with red leather seats and matching grips for the steering wheel, along with a red center console with carbon-fiber accents. The red car, however, will get a black version of that interior. Sales of the 2020 Supra Launch Edition will kick off in the US in the summer of this year. It’ll be priced at $55,250 plus $930 destination. 2020 Toyota Supra pricingDespite fears of a sky-high sticker, Toyota has been fairly aggressive with the 2020 Supra’s price tag. Aside from the limited-number Launch Edition, there’ll only be two trims: 3.0 and 3.0 Premium. Both share the same engine, active safety tech, and performance. The 2020 Supra 3.0 will be priced from $49,990 plus $930 destination. Options will include the $1,195 Driver Assist Package, which adds full speed adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, parking sonar, and rear collision warning. Adding navigation and a 12-speaker JBL Audio system will be $2,460. As for the 2020 Supra 3.0 Premium, that will be priced from $53,990 plus $930 destination. It will have navigation and the JBL Audio system as standard. The Driver Assist Package will also be $1,195. The front, meanwhile, is likely to be more controversial. In particular, the enlarged central grille and its flanking air intakes are likely to divide tastes; there are perhaps a few too many faux-grilles for comfort, too. The six-lens LED headlamps are suitably complex to echo that fascia’s detailing, while at the rear things are much simpler, with rings that integrate the turn, tail, and stop functions; backup lamps are LEDs embedded in the center of the lower bumper. They’re underneath a sizable, arching integrated spoiler, which Toyota says is a nod to the fourth-gen Supra Turbo’s huge rear wing option. Similarly, the double-bubble roof design hints at the classic Toyota 2000 GT. It’s functional, too, though, cutting down on drag. Bright colors will help it stand out, and Toyota has a wide selection to choose from. Red, yellow, and blue will be on offer among the choices; at the other extreme, a matte gray will leave the 2020 Supra looking almost as though it’s been left as unpainted metal. Somewhere in-between will fall more conservative shades of silver, white, black, and dark gray. Usable performanceUnder the hood is a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six engine, with 335 horsepower and 365 lb-ft of torque. Toyota is promising the latter will arrive earlier than you might expect, courtesy of features like the twin-scroll turbocharger, direct fuel injection, and continuously variable timing on the intake and exhaust camshafts. Variable intake valve lift is also used. Standard is an 8-speed automatic transmission, with paddle shifters. The lower gears have shortened ratios, while there’s a Launch Control feature too. Toyota is estimating 0-60 mph arriving in 4.1 seconds, with a top speed electronically limited to 155 mph.Rear wheel drive, the 2020 Supra has an active differential combining an electric motor and multiplate clutches. That will allow anything from 0 to 100-percent of the torque to be diverted between each of the rear wheels. The result is less understeer and oversteer, for tighter cornering. Rather than the dozens of drive modes in other performance coupes, Toyota’s has just two. Normal is designed for everyday driving, while Sport tamps down the traction and stability controls’ interventions. Throttle response gets sharper, the electric power steering is weightier, gearshifts are crisper, the active differential is more aggressive, and the exhaust sound is amplified. Toyota GAZOO Racing-tunedToyota’s racing team may not be as well known in the US as it is in Japan, but American drivers will still feel the benefits of the Toyota GAZOO Racing’s tuning of the 2020 Supra. Double-joint spring strut front suspension and multi-link rear suspension is used, along with aluminum control arms. The electric power steering supports variable assistance and variable ratios. 19-inch forged alloy wheels are standard. At the front, they’re shod in 255/35R19 Micheloin Pilot Super Sport rubber; the back get wider 275/35R19 tires. Hauling all 3,397 pounds to a halt are Brembo brakes, with 13.7-inch front rotors and 4-piston calipers. Adaptive Variable Suspension is standard, with Normal and Sport settings, adjusting damping according to how you’re driving and the road conditions. A familiar interiorNowhere is Toyota’s collaboration with BMW more apparent than when you climb inside. Indeed you could be forgiven for thinking that you’re in a new BMW Z4 – little surprise, there, given the two cars are close cousins. How much of a problem that is depends on how you feel about BMW’s ergonomics. Sports seats, with integrated head restraints, are standard. On the entry-level 2020 Supra 3.0 trim they’ll be clad in Alcantara and have power adjustment with memory; the 2020 Supra 3.0 Premium will get heated leather seats. Both get a luggage compartment that Toyota says should be sufficient for a weekend trip for two. A color screen surrounds a center tachometer for the driver, which also shows shift-timing information, multimedia, and navigation if optioned. A full-color head-up display is an option. Keyless entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, auto-dimming rearview mirrors, a reversing camera, auto-wipers, power folding mirrors, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel are standard. That Supra styleIt’s been 21 years since a new Supra launched in the US, and styling tastes have changed. The 2020 Supra has plenty of curves like the fourth-generation car, but this fifth-gen model looks to the Calty FT-1 Concept for its primary inspiration. So, there’s a long hood and a stubby passenger cabin pushed right back toward the rear of the car. Toyota calls it “Condensed Extreme,” but more importantly it leaves the 2020 Supra with perfect 50:50 front-rear weight distribution. The side profile is a particular success, the proportions of the car underscoring its inline-six engine and rear-wheel drive. 2020 Toyota Supra Gallerylast_img read more

Thoughtcontrolled robotic hand can play games of rockpaperscissors

first_img Editors’ Recommendations Researchers at Japan’s Hiroshima University have developed a robot prosthetic hand, controllable using only a wearer’s thoughts. The low-cost 3D-printed creation can perform a wide variety of hand gestures, and even engage in a game of rock-paper-scissors. The engineers who developed it hope that it could be used by people who have lost limbs, either through illness or accidents.“Prosthetic hands are prescribed to patients who have suffered an amputation of the upper limb due to an accident or a disease,” Toshio Tsuji, a professor in Hiroshima’s Department of System Cybernetics, told Digital Trends. “In particular, myoelectric prosthetic hands are a type of externally powered prostheses and use electromyogram (EMG) signals, which are generated by muscle contractions reflecting a human’s internal state and motion intentions. To realize a myoelectric prosthetic hand comparable to human hands, it is necessary to achieve both the high-accuracy estimation of the user’s motion intentions from measured EMG signals and natural [and] smooth operability based on the estimated motion.”Hiroshima UniversityThe hand developed by the researchers responds to the wishes of the wearer; using machine learning technology to decode their EMG signals. These involuntarily created EMG signals are gathered through the wearer’s skin using electrodes in the device. The process is similar to how an electrocardiogram measures heart rate. The signals are then sent to the computer, which uses machine learning technology to quickly (within five milliseconds) work out what movement the hand should make. It then sends the necessary electrical signals to the motors in the hand.The results are impressively accurate and can generate an impressively smooth range of motions as required. To put the hand through its paces, the researchers settled on making it play rock-paper-scissors, in which the wearer imagines a hand movement, while another robot hand challenges with them by performing a competing sign. In addition, the hand can be used to pick up water bottles or shake a person’s hand.As a practical tool, there’s still more to be done. For example, while it’s possible to use the hand to turn doorknobs, this can only be done when the doors are not heavy. That’s because the hand is able to generate just 0.5 kgf (kilogram-force) of a normal maximal grasping force. Nonetheless, the team is currently searching for a commercial partner who could help develop the project further and bring it to market.A paper describing the work was recently published in the journal Science Robotics. The holy grail of robotics: Inside the quest to build a mechanical human hand The Acer ConceptD laptops bring Nvidia Quadro workstation graphics to the masses Here are the best Dolby Atmos movies for your home theater The Legend of Zelda series ranked from best to worst Bigger isn’t always better: 5 of the smallest smartphones worth buyinglast_img read more

Hubble spots unexpected disc around supermassive black hole

first_img Editors’ Recommendations How do you kill a jellyfish galaxy? With a supermassive black hole Supermassive black hole resides inside a supermassive galaxy Tiny galaxy has huge black hole at its center, gives clues to galactic evolution Milky Way’s supermassive black hole is wrapped in a vast mantle of cool gas Physicists may have detected first-ever collision of black hole and neutron star Artist’s impression of the peculiar thin disc of material circling a supermassive black hole at the heart of the spiral galaxy NGC 3147, located 130 million light-years away. ESA/Hubble, M. KornmesserHubble has discovered something odd: A disc of material around a supermassive black hole which was thought to be starving. The black hole in question lies at the center of the spiral galaxy NGC 3147, which is 130 million light-years away from Earth.Astronomers were surprised to find the disc as they had thought that the black holes in a galaxy like this would be dying, as they usually do not capture enough dust and gas through their gravity to keep being regularly fed. But the disc of material around this black hole looks like what is seen in very active galaxies. Using computer models, the team investigated what happens when galaxies are active but give off relatively little light, predicting that a disc of material would be present when lots of gas is in the area. This process emits a lot of light, forming a quasar.“The type of disc we see is a scaled-down quasar that we did not expect to exist,” the study’s first author, Stefano Bianchi, of Università degli Studi Roma Tre in Italy, explained in a statement. “It’s the same type of disc we see in objects that are 1,000 or even 100,000 times more luminous. The predictions of current models for very faint active galaxies clearly failed.”Another interesting feature about the disc of material is that it demonstrates the theory of relativity. The disc is deep in the gravity field of the black hole, so much so that the strong gravitational forces actually affect the light waves given off. “This is an intriguing peek at a disc very close to a black hole, so close that the velocities and the intensity of the gravitational pull are affecting how we see the photons of light,” Bianchi explained. “We’ve never seen the effects of both general and special relativity in visible light with this much clarity,” team member Marco Chiaberge said in the statement.To see the matter in the disc, the team used Hubble’s Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph, a combined camera and spectrograph, which splits light into different wavelengths to gather highly precise information about an object’s speed and temperature.last_img read more

VA To Offer New Rules For Veterans With Brain Injuries

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. VA To Offer New Rules For Veterans With Brain Injuries The new regulations will make it easier for veterans with traumatic brain injuries to get health care. And, an agreement between the VA and the Indian Health Service will allow some vets to get care closer to home.The New York Times: Rules Eased for Veterans’ Brain Injury BenefitsThe Department of Veterans Affairs will propose new regulations on Friday that will make it easier for thousands of veterans to receive health care and compensation for certain illnesses that have been linked to traumatic brain injury. The regulations, which will be published on Monday in the Federal Register, lists Parkinsonism, unprovoked seizures, certain dementias, depression and hormone deficiency diseases related to the hypothalamus, pituitary or adrenal glands as eligible for the expanded benefits (Dao, 12/7).The Associated Press/Washington Post: Federal Agreement Aims To Increase Access To Health Care For Native American VeteransThe agreement allows for Veterans Affairs to reimburse [the Indian Health Service] for direct health care services provided to eligible American Indian and Alaska Native veterans. … Veterans Affairs and IHS released more details Thursday, saying the agreement stemmed from much work among the agencies and tribal governments as they tried to find a more equitable solution for bolstering access to care for veterans, particularly those in rural areas (12/6).last_img read more

Research Roundup Health Spending On Kids With Special Needs

first_imgResearch Roundup: Health Spending On Kids With Special Needs Each week, KHN reporter Alvin Tran compiles a selection of recently released health policy studies and briefs.Health Affairs: Recession Led To A Decline In Out-Of-Pocket Cost Spending For Children With Special Health Care Needs – Between 2008 and 2010, the rate of growth for health care spending declined. The recession, many researchers believe, was a key contributor to this decline. In this study, researchers explored whether the recession also had an impact on health care spending for children, especially those with special health care needs. They analyzed nationally representative survey data to examine trends in out-of-pocket spending for privately insured families from 2001 to 2009. “We found that the recession of 2007-09 was not associated with a decline in out-of-pocket spending for most children. However, adults in those children’s families experienced significant declines in out-of-pocket spending during the recession,” suggesting that parents may have cut back their own care to continue to provide for their children,  the authors write. They  found, however, “a significant reversal in the spending trend for children with special health care needs.” The authors suggests that “policy efforts to bolster coverage for families with children are needed to protect the health care use of both children and parents during times of economic hardship” (Karaca-Mandic, Yoo, Sommers, 6/2013). American Journal Of Preventive Medicine: Menu Labeling Regulations And Calories Purchased At Chain Restaurants –The federal menu labeling law will soon require all large chain restaurants to post caloric information on menus. Currently, 21 U.S. jurisdictions have adopted similar regulations. The authors examined the impact of menu labeling on calories purchased across 50 sites from 10 chain restaurants in King County, Wash., which includes Seattle. Using survey data and receipts of purchases collected from consumers, the researchers compared the averages of calories purchased at intervals before and after restaurants adopted the regulations. They found no significant changes in calorie intake for the first six months, but after 18 months calories purchased  at some chain restaurants and among women in King County decreased. “Implementation of similar regulations nationwide could reach millions of Americans, given the large number of restaurant patrons and the high frequency of eating out,” the authors conclude (Krieger et al., June, 2013).The Kaiser Family Foundation: Key Lessons From Medicaid And CHIP For Outreach And Enrollment Under The Affordable Care Act — The authors of this issue brief review five lessons learned through past enrollment campaigns for Medicaid and CHIP to help give perspective for the outreach and enrollment challenge for the online insurance marketplaces created by the federal health law. Those lessons are: Individuals want coverage and value Medicaid as a choice; outreach campaigns must combine both broad-based messaging and targeted efforts to eligible families; enrollment procedures must be simple and accessible; one-on-one assistance needs to be available; simplifying renewals and extending eligibility or lengthening the time between renewals will help cut costly drop-offs in coverage. “The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will significantly increase coverage options through an expansion of Medicaid and the creation of new health insurance exchange marketplaces,” the authors write. “However, effective outreach and enrollment efforts will be key to ensuring these new coverage opportunities translate into increased coverage. … it is important to recognize that enrollment into new coverage options will likely be a long-term effort. As such, it will be important for there to be adequate resources for outreach and enrollment over time to identify and utilize lessons learned as new enrollment efforts and experiences unfold (Stephens and Artiga, 6/4).The Heritage Foundation: The Obama Medicare Agenda: Why Seniors Will Fare Worse – Current seniors are already facing high Medicare costs, according to the authors of this brief. They add that these costs will only grow over the next five years as a result of the federal health law. “Through the enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), the Obama Administration and its allies in Congress have already committed to increasing seniors’ out-of-pocket costs,” the authors write. They add that the 2012 Medicare trustees report suggests seniors’ standard Medicare Part B monthly premiums will increase from $99.90 to $128.20 between 2012 and 2017. In this brief, they also raise concerns regarding President Barack Obama’s latest budget proposal for the 2014 fiscal year. “It does not substantially reform the financially desperate Medicare program; it simply shift costs to seniors,” the authors assert. “America needs a sound Medicare policy. The Obama Administration’s agency for increase costs for Medicare beneficiaries, plus the latest budget tweaks to administrative payments, will not reverse the troubled program’s unsustainable course,” they conclude (Moffit and Senger, 5/23).  JAMA Pediatrics: Reducing Racial/Ethnic Disparities In Childhood Obesity – In this study, researchers aimed to determine the extent to which racial/ethnic disparities in obesity and overweight are explained by differences in risk factors during pregnancy, infancy, and early childhood. The researchers recruited women during early pregnancy from a Massachusetts hospital and garnered data regarding their children through interviews and surveys. They found that black and Hispanic children by the age of 7 were twice as likely as whites to be overweight or obese. “Our findings suggest that racial/ethnic disparities in childhood obesity may be explained by factors operating in infancy and early childhood and that eliminating these factors could eliminate the disparities in childhood obesity,” they wrote. “These factors include differences in modifiable early feeding behaviors, such as breastfeeding and timing of the introduction of solid foods, accelerated infant weight gain, and early childhood obesity-related risk factors, including insufficient sleep, the presence of a television set in the room where the child sleeps, and consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and fast food, all of which have been found previously to be more prevalent among blacks and Hispanics than among whites” (Taveras et al., 6/1). Here is a selection of news coverage of other recent research:MedPage Today: Just 1 Doc In 10 Meets Meaningful Use Criteria More physicians are using electronic health records (EHRs), but a significantly smaller proportion of eligible physicians say they have met the first stage of meaningful use criteria, a study found. In a national survey, 43.5% of physicians in March 2012 reported having a basic EHR — up from 34% in 2011 — but only 9.8% said they met meaningful use criteria, reported Catherine M. DesRoches, PhD, of Mathematica Policy Research in Cambridge, Mass., and colleagues (Struck, 6/5). Reuters: Quit-Smoking Treatments Safe, Effective: Review Popular smoking cessation treatments – such as nicotine replacements and antidepressants – improve people’s chances of kicking the habit without much risk, according to a review of past research. “It seems very clear that medications can help. They’re not the magic bullet but you do improve your chances of quitting — generally — if you try them. And as far as we can tell, they’re safe to use,” said Kate Cahill, who led the study (Seaman, 5/30). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

Cancer Researchers Weigh Benefit Of ThreeDrug Combinations With Resulting Higher Costs

first_img Cancer drug costs have gone up 72 percent over the last five years, to about $15.9 billion. It’s one sobering reality oncologists are facing at one of their big annual meetings this week in Chicago. (Gorenstein, 6/6) Cancer Researchers Weigh Benefit Of Three-Drug Combinations With Resulting Higher Costs Combination regimens hold promise for patients but could heighten tensions over the escalating expense of cancer drugs. Meanwhile, Marketplace reports on a company that is cutting deals with pharmaceutical companies to try to rein those costs. Marketplace: Deals Aimed At Reining In Costs Of Cancer Drugs Show Promise This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.center_img Cancer researchers see promise in giving patients combinations of multiple drugs that are proving more effective than one or two. But the strategy poses a dilemma for health insurers and patients: even higher prices. Researchers said at a medical meeting here Sunday that adding a third drug, Johnson & Johnson’s Darzalex, to an older two-drug combination for patients with multiple myeloma significantly slowed the blood cancer’s growth compared with the older two-drug combination alone in a clinical trial. But the combined cost of the drugs—based on current list prices and the dosing schedule used in the study—would be at least $180,000 for the first full year of treatment for the average patient. (Loftus, 6/5) The Wall Street Journal: Combination Drug Therapies For Cancer Show Promise At Higher Potential Cost last_img read more

Hospitals Safety Measure Improvements Prevent 125000 Deaths Save 28M

first_img The CMS has issued an interim final rule Monday that attempts to stop providers and organizations from steering patients eligible for Medicaid or Medicare into private insurance as a way to receive higher reimbursement rates. The rule issued Monday requires dialysis centers that help patients pay private insurance premiums either directly or through charities to clarify what plans in their region pay for and how that compares to Medicare or Medicaid. The notices must inform patients that some plans may not cover all costs typically covered by Medicare, such as necessary medical expenses for living donors. (Dickson, 12/12) Efforts to make hospitals safer for patients are paying off, preventing 3.1 million harmful hospital-acquired conditions and the deaths of some 125,000 people, according to an HHS report released Monday. Those improvements saved close to $28 billion in healthcare costs from 2010 through 2015. Healthcare leaders touted this progress as a direct result of policies laid out in the Affordable Care Act, public-private partnerships such as the Partnership for Patients, which launched in 2011, and other quality improvement initiatives to target hospital-acquired conditions. These conditions include infections, falls, pressure ulcers and other adverse outcomes. (Whitman, 12/12) Modern Healthcare: Patient Safety Efforts Saved $28 Billion Over Five Years  This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.center_img Hospitals’ Safety Measure Improvements Prevent 125,000 Deaths, Save $28M A Department of Health and Human Services report finds that those patient safety efforts also prevented 3.1 million hospital-acquired conditions from 2010 to 2015. In other news, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issues an interim rule that takes aim at providers that steer patients eligible for Medicare or Medicaid into private insurance in order to receive higher reimbursement rates. Modern Healthcare: CMS Cracks Down On Providers Steering Patients Into Private Plans  last_img read more

WatchWhats in the federal budget for business — and what isnt

first_imgWhat’s in the federal budget for business — and what isn’t KPMG’s Carmela Pallotto and FP columnist Kevin Carmichael explain what corporate Canada would have liked to see in the budget and what it got Facebook Twitter Join the conversation → What you need to know about the federal budget in 60 seconds March 20, 201911:14 AM EDT Filed under News Economy Reddit Larysa Harapyn Related Stories 0 Comments Comment Liberals have a $1.7-billion plan to send Canadian workers back to school Email KPMG’s Carmela Pallotto and FP columnist Kevin Carmichael explain what corporate Canada would have liked to see in the budget and what it got This year’s federal budget is built for voters, not business What small businesses need to know about Federal Budget 2019 Full Federal Budget coverage More Share this storyWhat’s in the federal budget for business — and what isn’t Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Jamie Golombek on three things in the federal budget that could boost your pocketbooklast_img read more

Honda Releases Clarity PlugIn Hybrid Versus Chevy Volt Video

first_imgHmm … very interesting ad timing by Honda.While we have absolutely no way of knowing how this played out, it’s quite intriguing that right around the same time Chevrolet announced that it will kill the Volt, Honda released a very short Clarity Plug-In Hybrid ad showing how its car is better. The only brief mentions are the fact that is has more passenger volume and horsepower.Additional Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid Content: Did Honda get word about the demise of the Volt and throw together a quick ad to appeal to those that may have had plans to purchase a Volt? Is the timing just a mere coincidence? Perhaps the ad was already in the works, since despite it being short, production of such videos take advanced planning and a decent amount of time.At any rate, the Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid is a fantastic vehicle. It’s honestly one of few PHEVs that even competes with the Chevrolet Volt on electric range for a plug-in hybrid. We’re sad to see the Volt go, as it’s an incredible car as well, but the passenger space situation is surely something we continue to hear many complaints about.The 2018 Clarity Plug-In Hybrid starts at $33,400 and offers 47 miles of EPA-estimated electric range. It comes standard with the Honda Sensing Suite of advanced driver assistance features, which includes a wealth of safety systems that are not standard in most vehicles. A 2019 Chevrolet Volt will cost you $33,520. It gets 53 miles of electric range. Only a rearview camera and GM’s Teen Driver come standard. If you want it stocked with safety features, it will cost you over $39,000.Both cars quality for the full $7,500 U.S. federal EV tax credit, but GM will hit 200,000 plug-ins sold very soon, which will initiate the credit phaseout. However, the automaker will only be producing the Volt through March 2019, so buyers that have the tax liability to take advantage of the credit will be fine.Do you own either of these rival plug-ins? If so, please share with us in the comment section below.Video Description via Honda on YouTube:2018 Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid vs. Chevy VoltThe Clarity Plug-In Hybrid is engineered to push further ahead of the competition, with more passenger volume and horsepower than the Chevy Volt. Learn more at https://automobiles.honda.com/clarity…HONDA CLARITY PLUG-IN HYBRID Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on November 28, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Alex On Autos Reviews Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid Source: Electric Vehicle News 15 photoscenter_img Consumer Reports Drives Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid: Video CHEVROLET VOLT 9 photos Honda Clarity PHEV Versus Nissan LEAF: Which Wins In Overall Value?last_img read more

Porsche is getting a new allelectric truck for Taycan production

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Porsche announced today that it is adding a new 32-tonne all-electric truck to its commercial fleet to be used for the preparation of the production of the Taycan, Porsche’s first all-electric vehicle. more…The post Porsche is getting a new all-electric truck for Taycan production appeared first on Electrek.last_img

DS Techeetah Adds 2 More Drivers For Formula E Marrakesh Test

first_imgAfter also making her FE test debut with DS Techeetah in Ad Diriyah last month, Calderon will join the team’s development driver Rossiter in getting behind the wheel of a Gen2 electric single-seater again in Marrakesh on Sunday 13.“Getting another shot at being involved with DS Techeetah is great,” said Calderon.“I loved my time in the car and with the team in Ad Diriyah and even though I didn’t get to drive as much as expected due to the red flags we managed to secure some good laps.“I’m keen to get more laps under my belt at this test and it will be really good to continue working with the team at the Marrakesh test.“It’s unlike anything I’ve ever driven before. It’s a lot to take into consideration as it’s not as straight forward as other formula cars.”British driver Rossiter, who returned to Japan’s Super Formula series in 2018 but has enjoyed more success in his race-winning Super GT efforts in recent years, started working with DS Techeetah last year in a simulator-based role.That relationship began when he drove for the team in the 2018 Marrakesh test, having failed to land a full-time FE race drive with the Venturi team.DS Techeetah team principal Mark Preston said he was “very excited” to resume working with both drivers.“Tatiana really impressed us in the Ad Diriyah test despite the limited running due to some red flags, so we wanted to give her another chance to see what more she can extract out of it and to gain further knowledge from her feedback.“James has been invaluable to us during the development period and has continued to help us with the sim sessions in the lead up to the season.“It’s the second rookie test he will commence for us and so it will be really good to see him back in the car.”Also reprising an Ad Diriyah testing role is BRDC Formula 3 race winner Jamie Chadwick.She will test for NIO again, having got her first experience of FE with the team in Saudi Arabia but with limited running due to a technical setback.NIO team principal Gerry Hughes said: “After a somewhat reduced test event programme in Saudi Arabia due to a technical issue beyond our control, I am obviously very pleased to extend the opportunity for Jamie to test with us once again.“This is obviously a case of ‘Same car, different testing environment’, but one that I know she will relish and it will be very interesting to witness her progress during the day.” More Formula E News Formula E Losing “Unpredictability” With Flat-Out Gen 2 Racing Audi DTM Driver Joins Formula E Team Electric Autonomous Roborace May Join Formula 1 Toocenter_img The DS Techeetah Formula E team will field Sauber Formula 1 tester Tatiana Calderon and Super GT ace James Rossiter in this month’s Marrakesh test.Calderon, who completed two private F1 tests in 2018 with Sauber, is eyeing a Formula 2 programme and continued affiliation with the Swiss team this season. Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 6, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

Here are the top 5 electric motorcycles and scooters from the Barcelona

first_imgSource: Charge Forward This year marked the 100th anniversary of the Barcelona International Motor Show. Among the rows and rows of fancy new cars sat a number of impressive electric motorcycles and scooters as well. Below are our top five favorites. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://youtu.be/ee5nKd7zjWoThe post Here are the top 5 electric motorcycles and scooters from the Barcelona Motor Show appeared first on Electrek.last_img