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Big Tech &
Reddit app revamp adds a Discover Tab for finding communities, new navigation (4 minute read)
Reddit has launched the first major change to its mobile app in two years. It has added a new Discover Tab and a revamped navigation system. Reddit has over 100,000 active communities, but many are under-exposed. The changes will make it easier to discover lesser-known communities. Reddit will use users' existing subscriptions to make recommendations. It will not use demographic data for the Discover Tab. The feature will not recommend NSFW, banned, or quarantined communities.
New superbug treatment disables drug resistance in deadly bacteria (2 minute read)
Antibiotic-resistant bacteria are predicted to claim up to 10 million lives a year by 2050. Bacteria that survive antibiotic treatment pass on genetic material to help other bacteria become resistant to the drugs. In a recent study, scientists targeted a protein that helped bacteria develop resistance. When the protein was inhibited with chemicals, the bacteria became vulnerable to existing antibiotics again. The next step in the research involves finding protein inhibitors that can be used in humans.
Artificial neurons connect to biological ones to control living plants (2 minute read)
Researchers at Linköping University in Sweden have created artificial organic neurons and synapses that can integrate with natural biological systems. The artificial neurons operate with the same ion signals as biological neurons, making them compatible. Repeated activation of synapses strengthens the neurons, making them more effective over time. The artificial neurons are biodegradable and harmless to both plants and animals. The researchers demonstrated the system by using it to control the jaws of a Venus flytrap.
Programming, Design & Data Science
Can you get pwned with CSS? (7 minute read)
The most commonly described CSS attack is to exfiltrate data from pages. This can result in hackers being able to view very specific user input data. These attacks are rarely seen. Another CSS vulnerability occurs when unsafe-inline is used in the style-src. Hackers can exploit this to inject arbitrary HTML into the application. Overall, the vulnerabilities in CSS are not critical and are easily mitigated.
Ukraine Calls on Hacker Underground to Defend Against Russia (3 minute read)
The Ukrainian government is asking for volunteers from the country's hacker underground. Volunteers will be divided into defensive units, to help protect critical infrastructure, and offensive units, to spy on Russian troops. Requests began to appear on hacker forums after Russian forces started attacking cities across Ukraine. The posts were made on behalf of a Defense Ministry official. A new piece of destructive software was discovered circulating around Ukraine on Wednesday, but Russia has denied involvement.
Google Maps Live Traffic Showed the Russian Invasion of Ukraine (3 minute read)
Google Maps Live Traffic showed a traffic jam in Belgorod, Russia, just before the invasion of Ukraine. Vladimir Putin had announced a special military operation in a region in Eastern Ukraine hours before, but the traffic data showed movement in a different region. The researchers that spotted the movement combined other optical and radar data to conclude that the invasion was about to happen. While the data could have come from Russian soldiers that left their phones on, it more likely came from civilians who were stuck due to Russian military movement.