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2024-05-25 02:00:18| Engadget

The following contains spoilers for 73 Yards. Russell T. Davies admits his writing eschews narrative formalism in favor of things that just feel right. Two decades ago, his critics pointed to his use of deus ex machina endings as a stick to beat his reputation with. But were in a different era now, where vibes matter just as much as logic both inside the shows new more fantastic skew, and in the real world. 73 Yards is the vibiest episode of new Doctor Who so far, but I even found it easy to sit back and enjoy what it was doing. Doctor Who is a complicated show to make, and some series have started production on Day 1 a week or more behind schedule. To combat this, the show started making -lite episodes that didnt need the leads to be as involved. There are Doctor-lite episodes like Love and Monsters and Blink, and even companion-lite episodes like Midnight. This production process enables the star, or stars, to be off shooting Episode A while a guest cast takes the spotlight for the bulk of Episode B. Production of the new series began while star Ncuti Gatwa was still finishing the last of his work on Netflixs Sex Education. So while he appears in the opening and closing moments of "73 Yards", hes otherwise absent as the Doctor has been erased from history. It gives us the chance to see what a modern companion would do if left stranded in uncertain territory without her alien ally. The episode takes hard turns from folk and rural horror to kitchen-sink drama before becoming a light homage to Taxi Driver. Suffice to say, this is another episode you wouldnt watch with small kids. Bad Wolf / BBC Studios The TARDIS lands on a cliff edge in Wales, with the Doctor pointing out its another liminal space where magic is allowed to creep in. He even mentions the war between the land and the sea, name-checking a rumored spin-off fans discovered after scouring production documents. The Doctor talks about how great a country Wales is, except for Roger ap Gwillam, a Welsh politician who, two decades hence, will lead the UK to the brink of nuclear armageddon. He then steps into a fairy ring, disturbing its web, and disappears while Ruby reads the paper notes tied to it. The notes mention a Mad Jack, a scary figure that sounds like a villain from folklore. Suddenly, Ruby is alone on the cliff but can now see the blurry figure of an old woman waving her arms at her in the distance. Ruby tries to approach her but the figure remains the same distance away (the titular 73 yards) no matter where she goes. Believing the Doctor has ghosted her, she tries to solve the quandary of this figure on her own. Ruby approaches a hiker (Susan Twist) and tries to work out where shes seen her before (every episode thus far), but cant quite put her finger on it. She asks the hiker if shed be willing to speak to the old woman who is following her, but when the hitchhiker gets there, whatever she says is so horrifying that she sprints away from the scene in terror. Ruby heads to a pub in the nearby town where the locals mock her mistaking her hesitancy for condescension. She asks one of the patrons to go speak to the woman and, when he does, the same thing happens. Ruby gets home and asks her mum to try, this time holding a phone so Ruby can hear what shes saying. But the phone call is disrupted and her mum is similarly horrified by what she hears locking Ruby out of her home soon after. Kate Lethbridge-Stewart and UNIT are next to offer aid, right up until they encounter the woman, when they all abandon her. Bad Wolf / BBC Studios All the time, the old woman remains 73 yards away from wherever Ruby is, unnoticed by everyone else unless Ruby directs their attention to her. She cant photograph the woman's face it's blurry and cant get close enough to hear her ominous warning. In fact, even to the end of the episode, theres a lot of unknowns that are never resolved. Rubys strangely resilient, and once shes gotten beyond the abandonment, she looks to build a new life for herself. She treats her stalker as a friend, wishing her well as we cycle through a montage of the next chapter of Rubys life. She gets a job, moves into her own flat and goes through a series of breakups as she gently ages past 30, and then 40. Then, on the TV, she sees Roger ap Gwillam on the TV, who even mentions Mad Jack, and remembers both the Doctors warning and the messages in the fairy ring. It takes Ruby no time at all to be sure that her purpose in life is to save the world, and to avert Gwillams nuclear catastrophe. She signs up to Gwillams fascist political party as a volunteer and eventually reaches a position where shes close to the top. Gwillams rise is quick and its not long before hes promising to secede from NATO and put his itchy trigger finger on the UKs nuclear arsenal, ready to wage war on the rest of the world. Gwillams inauguration will take place at Cardiff City Stadium, while Ruby follows the politician along, lurking in the crowd. Bad Wolf / BBC Studios Ruby then starts to approach Gwillam, walking across the off-limits pitch at the stadium, and you expect her to pull out a weapon. But instead, she whips out her phone and starts measuring the distance between her and Roger until she reaches 73 yards. When she does, she gestures to the villain to notice the woman, and when he notices her, he hears the horrifying thing she says. The shock is enough to send Gwillam racing out of the stadium, resigning from the role of Prime Minister and preventing nuclear armageddon. But while Ruby hoped that would be the end of it, the figure remains with her for the rest of her life. Its only on her deathbed she realizes she can project herself back in time to act as a warning for the Doctor to not step in the fairy ring. She does so, preventing the accident in the first place and paradoxically nullifying the entire time stream in the process. History carries on its merry way and all is well for now. But given the risks of paradoxes in Doctor Who, and the general sense that history is unraveling, it might not augur too well for whats going to happen in the future.

Category: Marketing and Advertising


2024-05-24 21:00:37| Engadget

YouTube Music for Android is finally releasing a long-awaited tool that lets people hum a song to search for it, in addition to singing the tune or playing the melody on an instrument, according to reporting by 9to5Google. The software has been in the testing phase since March. All you have to do is tap the magnifying glass in the top-right corner and look for the waveform icon next to the microphone icon. Tap the waveform icon and start humming or singing. A fullscreen results page should quickly bring up the cover art, song name, artist, album, release year and other important data about the song. The software builds upon the Pixels Now Playing feature, which uses AI to match the sound to the original recording. The tool comes in a server-side update with version 7.02 of YouTube Music for Android. There doesnt look to be any availability information for the iOS release, though its most likely headed our way in the near future. You don't need to be @KidCudi to use Hum to Search. Hum a song into your Google app, and we'll identify it for you. Test it with your favorite songs, or use it to figure out the song that's been stuck in your head and find your new favorite. pic.twitter.com/MluVNesTpE Google (@Google) December 21, 2020 This type of feature isnt exactly new, even if its new to YouTube Music. Google Search rolled out a similar tool back in 2020 and the regular YouTube app began offering something like this last year. Online music streaming platform Deezer also has a hum to search tool, released back in 2022.This article originally appeared on Engadget at https://www.engadget.com/you-can-now-hum-to-find-a-song-on-youtube-music-for-android-190037510.html?src=rss

Category: Marketing and Advertising


2024-05-24 20:36:43| Engadget

Russia has reportedly found new, more effective ways to knock out Ukraines Starlink service. The New York Times said on Friday that the increased interference has disrupted communications at critical moments and is posing a major threat to Ukraine, putting the country further on its heels more than two years into the war. How Russia is jamming Elon Musks satellite internet terminals is unclear. The New York Times said Russias ability to jam communications has thrown off Ukraines ability to communicate, gather intelligence and conduct drone strikes. Ukrainian soldiers told the paper that jammed Starlink service stunts their ability to communicate quickly, leaving them scrambling to send text messages (often extremely slowly) to share intel about incoming or ongoing Russian maneuvers or attacks. The jamming was reportedly repeated across Ukraines northern front line, often coinciding with Russian advances. The new outages are the first time Russia has jammed Starlink reception that widely and frequently. If it continues, it could mark a tactical shift in the conflict, highlighting Ukraines dependence on SpaceXs internet technology. Without competing choices of similar quality, Volodymyr Zelenskyys democratic nation is left without many options that could work at the scale Ukraine needs. Russia has tried to disrupt Ukraines comms since the war began, but Starlink service has reportedly held up well in the face of them. Something has changed. Ukraines digital minister, Mykhailo Federov, told The New York Times this week that Russias recent jamming appeared to use new and more advanced technology. Federov told The NYT that Vladimir Putins army is now testing different mechanisms to disrupt the quality of Starlink connections because its so important for us. The digital minister didnt specify the exact weapons Russia has been using, but a Russian official in charge of the countrys electronic warfare told state media last month that its military put Starlink on a list of targets and that it had developed ways to disrupt the service. Ukraine President Volodymyr ZelenskyyArmed Forces of Ukraine The disruptions highlight the power that one mercurial billionaire can have over the pivotal Eastern European war. Ukrainian officials have reportedly appealed directly to Mr. Musk to turn on Starlink access during military operations ahead of crucial drone strikes, and he hasnt always obliged. The Wall Street Journal reported in February that concern has grown that Musk could harbor at least some degree of Russian sympathies. He has posted comments on X that could be viewed as taking a pro-Russian stance, and disinformation experts worry that the way he runs the social platform could be friendly to Russian interference in the pivotal 2024 elections, including those in the US. Musk spoke out earlier this year against the US sending more aid to Ukraine. Putins army also reportedly began using its own Starlink service, although Musk says he wasnt aware of the terminals being sold to the Slavic nation. Ukrainian officials raised concerns earlier this year that Russia was buying Starlink tech from third-party vendors. However, the Pentagon said earlier this month that the US has been heavily involved in working with the government of Ukraine and SpaceX to counter Russian illicit use of Starlink terminals, and a departing space official described SpaceX as a very reliable partner in those operations.This article originally appeared on Engadget at https://www.engadget.com/russia-can-reportedly-jam-ukraines-access-to-starlink-at-will-183642120.html?src=rss

Category: Marketing and Advertising


2024-05-24 19:56:42| Engadget

The UK has passed a bill that's the country's version of the European Union's Digital Markets Act (DMA). Legislators fast-tracked the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers (DMCC) Bill before parliament dissolves on May 30 ahead of a general election in July. The overarching aim of the DMCC, which is set to become law once it receives Royal Assent, is to regulate and increase competition in digital markets. It will come into force later this year. The bill is broadly similar to the DMA, which led to the EU designating several large tech companies' services and products as "gatekeepers" and imposing stricter rules on them. The DMCC grants the Digital Markets Unit (DMU), a division of the Competition and Markets Authority, the authority to label companies with substantial and entrenched market power and a position of strategic significance as having Strategic Market Status (SMS). Among other things, SMS companies will have to adhere to codes of conduct as determined by the DMU. Those will be based on the foundations of fair trading, openness and trust and transparency. The DMU has a broad canvas for defining the conduct requirements for each business. If a company breaches its code of conduct, it faces a fine of up to 10 percent of its global revenue. There have been suggestions that the likes of Meta and Google may be forced to pay UK news publishers for using their work in the likes of Google News (and perhaps even for AI products). Others have suggested that Apple may be required to allow sideloading and third-party app stores on iOS, as in the EU. Companies may also be prohibited from prioritizing their own products and services in search results. However, the specific requirements for each SMS haven't been detailed yet.  The DMCC also has implications for things like subscriptions, junk fees, fake reviews, ticket resales, mergers, antitrust and consumer protection. For the first time, the CMA will have the power to impose a hefty fine if it determines a company has violated a consumer law and it won't have to go through courts to do so. This article originally appeared on Engadget at https://www.engadget.com/the-uk-passes-its-version-of-the-eus-digital-markets-act-175642166.html?src=rss

Category: Marketing and Advertising


2024-05-24 19:38:11| Engadget

Apple once designed a Tetris clone that has been found on a prototype version of the third-generation iPod, indicating the company was experimenting with releasing the game on the music player. Its called Stacker and, obviously, is controlled via the iPods scroll wheel. The software was spotted by X user AppleDemoYT, who is known for finding rare prototype devices. The prototype iPod is a "DVT" device, meaning it was a mid-stage device that was still in "Design Validation Testing." It has a model number of A1023, which is not a known model number of any iPod version. The device runs a prototype version of iPodOS 2.0, which is where Stacker comes from. The pieces are moved from left to right using the scroll wheel and they fall when the middle button is pressed. The goal is to clear lines and score points. You know the deal. Its Tetris. Its not the only game found on the prototype iPod. Theres something called Block0, which is likely an early version of Brick. The device also features a game called Klondike, which is likely an early version of Solitaire. The music player did eventually get some games, including the aforementioned Solitaire and Brick. AppleDemoYT asked former Apple VP Tony Fadell why Stacker was never released and he said it was because games didnt show up until a later software release. Later versions of the iPod got an official version of Tetris, in addition to games like Bejeweled, Mini Golf, Mahjong, Zuma, Cubis 2, and Pac-Man. All of these releases predate the App Store. The iPod Classic was discontinued in 2014 and the iPod Touch was sent to a farm upstate in 2022, ending the era of the standalone music player.This article originally appeared on Engadget at https://www.engadget.com/apple-built-a-tetris-clone-for-the-ipod-but-never-released-it-173810144.html?src=rss

Category: Marketing and Advertising


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