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Google secretly gathered millions of patient records across 21 states, in an effort dubbed "Project Nightingale," reports The Wall Street Journal. Neither doctors nor patients were made aware of the effort, according to the report. The Wall Street Journal's Rob Copeland reports that the data amassed in the program includes "lab results, doctor diagnoses and hospitalization records, among other categories, and amounts to a complete health history, complete with patient names and dates of birth," and that as many as 150 Google employees may have access to the data. The New York Times corroborated much of the report later in the day, writing that "dozens of Google employees" may have access to sensitive patient data, and that there are concerns some Google employees may have downloaded some...

Instagram has been running tests where it hides like counts on posts in seven different countries around the world, and very soon, it will start testing hiding them for some US users as well. Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri made the announcement today at the WIRED25 conference. In tests that have rolled out so far, likes are hidden from public posts in the Feed, on the web, and in profiles. However, you should still be able to see how many likes a post gets — it's only other people that won't be able to. The test first started in Canada, and it has also rolled out to Ireland, Italy, Japan, Brazil, Australia, and New Zealand. Facebook is also running a test of hiding like counts in...

"Climate strike" has been crowned word of the year by Collins Dictionary. The term, which refers to people leaving work or school as a way to demand action on climate change, was used 100 times more often in 2019 compared to last year, Collins’ lexicographers found. The company says that they monitor a 9.5 billion-word body of text each year to identify "new and notable" words that reflect big shifts in culture. Massive protests across the globe over the past year reflect people's growing sense of urgency to take action on climate change. Around this time last year, a panel of scientists convened by the United Nations released a report that found that the world had 12 years left (11 now) to dramatically cut down its use of fossil fuels in order to avoid the most catastrophic effects of...

Last month Oppo announced its latest flagship phone, the Reno Ace, with a headline feature of the world's fastest fast-charge solution yet. Oppo's 65W SuperVOOC 2.0 fast charger is claimed to be able to charge the Reno Ace's 4,000mAh battery in half an hour, which would put it ahead of all other competing technology on the market. I have the Reno Ace in hand now, and I can confirm that it is indeed the fastest-charging phone available — if not quite as fast as Oppo’s claims. Two minutes and 39 seconds after plugging the Reno Ace in, the screen turned on to indicate a one-percent charge. Here's how it went over the next half-hour: 5 mins: 10 percent 10 mins: 37 percent 15 mins: 57 percent 20 mins: 76 percent 25 mins: 92 percent 28 mins: 98 percent 29 mins: 99 percent 30 mins: 99...

Nintendo has announced its Black Friday deals, and chief among them is a $299.99 Switch console bundle that includes a free download code for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. This deal will start on Thursday, November 28th, and will be available at several retailers. So far, we’ve seen it confirmed in Target's Black Friday ad, but expect it to pop up at the other major players, like Best Buy, Walmart, Amazon, and more. Getting a free game with the Switch is great, especially one that’s as good as Nintendo's popular kart racer, but there's some fine print with this deal that you may, or may not, care about. You'll only get the free game with the HAC-001 version of the console, the original launch model that has been superseded by a new version with vastly superior battery life (a range from 4.5 to...

AMD has announced its first two third-generation Ryzen Threadripper processors: the $1,399 Threadripper 3960X and the $1,999 Threadripper 3970X. Both processors feature higher clock speeds and more PCIe lanes than their second-generation predecessors, and they also support PCIe version 4.0. You'll be able to get your hands on the new chips on November 25th when AMD has also announced that it’ll be launching its mainstream AM4 flagship: the 16-core, 32-thread Ryzen 9 3950X. You can see how the specs of the new Threadripper processors compare to the previous generation below, but outside of these, there are a couple of other improvements. Both chips are built using AMD’s 7nm Zen 2 microarchitecture, and they feature a total of 72 usable PCIe 4.0 lanes. They also use AMD’s new TRX40...

Anticipated electric bicycles scheduled to be released in 2020 isn’t from a traditional bike manufacturer, or even some new crowdfunding e-bike startup, but from one of the oldest motorcycle companies in the world. We've known for a few years now that Harley-Davidson is working on a whole lineup of battery-powered vehicles, including a motorcycle, several pedal-assist bikes, and a scooter-moped concept. This week, the company helped whet our appetites by sending us some pictures so we could get a closer look at the pre-production designs. The pictures are nice to look at, but riding them would be even sweeter. Prototype versions of Harley-Davidson's new e-bikes actually made their public debut this week at the 2019 EICMA Motorcycle Show in Milan. (Electrek was on the scene and got some...

Less than two months after TikTok came under fire for appearing to censor videos related to the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, the app is facing a new challenge from the US government. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) has contacted TikTok's Chinese parent company ByteDance with concerns that the app could pose a threat to US citizens. Those concerns will most likely lead to a national security review — one that lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have been calling for since early October. In the end, ByteDance could be forced to sell off Musical.ly, the American company it acquired in 2017 that helped launch TikTok's viral success. If that happens, it could mark the end of TikTok in the US, and serve as a warning to any Chinese company looking to...

Something strange is happening with text messages in the US right now. Overnight, a multitude of people received text messages that appear to have originally been sent on or around Valentine's Day 2019. These people never received the text messages in the first place; the people who sent the messages had no idea that they had never been received, and they did nothing to attempt to resend them overnight. Delayed messages were sent from and received by both iPhones and Android phones, and the messages seem to have been sent and received across all major carriers in the US. Many of the complaints involve T-Mobile or Sprint, although AT&T and Verizon have been mentioned as well. People using regional US carriers, carriers in Canada, and even Google Voice also seem to have experienced delays....

On Wednesday, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said that Facebook has refused to comply with its subpoenas to provide more information regarding its investigation into the company's alleged privacy violations, according to CNBC. In a press conference Wednesday afternoon, Becerra addressed California's lawsuit against Facebook demanding that the company hand over any documents related to "privacy, disclosures, and third-party access to user data" like in the case of its Cambridge Analytica scandal. The lawsuit was filed in the California Superior Court in hopes of forcing the company to hand over the communications and documents. "If Facebook had complied with our legitimate investigative requests," Becerra said "We would not be making this announcement today." Prosecutors for...