Category Archives: Science, Tech, & Health

Fortnite Tournament Results in Bans for Some Users

Cheating is taken very seriously by the folks at Epic Games; so much so that they are banning people during the qualifying stages of the first ever Fortnite World Cup.

More than 1,000 accounts were banned for cheating after a bot used by Epic Games discovered them during the qualifying tournament.

They would explain the reasoning behind these bans in a blog post that was released last week; the first Fortnite World Cup Online Open was held on April 13 and 14 with a prize pool of $1 million dollars.

Total number of accounts banned was at 1,221. 1,163 of those are banned from competitive “Fortnite” play for two weeks due to circumventing the game’s region locks said Epic.
“Fortnite” awards World Cup prizes to thousands of players spread across six different regions: Europe, Asia, Brazil, Oceania, and the East and West coasts of North America. 196 prize winners were disqualified and forced to forfeit their prize money for playing across different regions.

Continue reading Fortnite Tournament Results in Bans for Some Users

The Dead to Outnumber the Living in Facebook by 2070

Most of us do not know this, but the death rate throughout the world is increasing. While it is not at the point where humans are dying faster than being born, it eventually will happen sooner than you think. Just take a look at the users of Facebook.

According to data from Oxford University, the number of dead Facebook users could outnumber the living by 2070. This would leave a vast amount of historical archives and importance that needs archivists to be brought in and save the information said the university.

Currently, the global social media site has around 2.27 billion members, but 1.4 billion will die before 2100, according to the new calculations.

 This means that within 50 or so years from now, the number of dead could pass the living. This would be a milestone that has important implications for what should or could happen with the huge archives of digital history.

By the turn of the 22nd century, the number of decreased profiles could reach as high as 4.9 billion and it would be a huge representation of the heritage in the 21st century.

Lead author Carl Ohman, a doctoral candidate from the Oxford Internet Institute (OII) warned there were problems with a single commercial company holding the largest archive of human behavior ever assembled.

“It may be of enormous benefit to future generations, and to historians especially,” said Mr. Ohman. “However, Facebook is a private company and is thus guided by what is commercially, not historically, valuable… Why would Facebook bother to store up to five billion dead profiles on their servers if there were no commercial inventive to do so? The problem is not that Facebook is a commercial company, it is rather the increasing concentration of historical data. Too few control too much.”

As of now, the process after a person dies, there two options for their accounts on Facebook. The first choice is memorializing their account for everyone to remember them by.  The word “remembering” is placed next to the profile name along a contact number for the person which is usually a family member running the page. The second option which is done by the user before their death is the delete option which just deletes their account after death.

It allows friends and family to view public posts made before their death and also post memories.

Now, the OII is calling for Facebook to invite historians, researchers, and archivists to devise and create a way to curate the archives so they are not lost forever and that they can be available to future generations.

The team said all social media networks with a similar global reach should start thinking about how the data of their users should be stored and used after death.

Co-author David Watson, also a doctoral student at the OII, added: “Facebook should invite historians, archivists, archaeologists and ethicists to participate in the process of curating the vast volume of accumulated data that we leave behind as we pass away.

“This is not just about finding solutions that will be sustainable for the next couple of years, but possibly for many decades ahead. Controlling this archive will, in a sense, be to control our history.

“It is therefore important that we ensure that access to these historical data is not limited to a single for-profit firm. It is also important to make sure that future generations can use our digital heritage to understand their history.”

However, the team said social network archives could provide a detailed view of history that has previously been impossible to see.

Mr. Ohman added: “Data from social media differs from traditional historical data, not only in terms of the content, but also in terms of the quantity.

“What we know about people in the past is basically based on men with power, who could preserve information about themselves to future generations.

“But we know way less about the thoughts and daily lives of the millions of women, workers and other marginalized groups in history. With social media as an historical asset, we have a chance not to repeat this mistake.”

These predictions are based off data provided by the United Nations, which provided the expected number of mortalities and total populations for every country in the world distributed by age. They were then mapped against Facebook data.

This research that was found by Oxford was published in the journal Big Data & Society.

 

Photo from Medium

Ubisoft Adds to the Donations for Rebuilding Notre Dame

In the few days after the world nearly lost the beauty of the Notre Dame Cathedral forever, thousands of people and companies have been getting together to donate money to save the church. This includes Ubisoft.

The company announced Wednesday it is making a contribution of 500,000 Euros (about $565,000) to the rebuilding of the cathedral. And the Paris-headquartered game maker said Wednesday it will make its virtual rendition of the cathedral that was used in their Assassin’s Creed game available to those involved in the rebuilding of the church.

Also for the upcoming week, Ubisoft is making “Assassin’s Creed Unity” available for free to players on PC. (Note, the game does have a ton of glitches so be warned if you get this game on your PC.)

“As the smoke clears on the events that unfolded on Monday at the Notre-Dame de Paris, we stand in solidarité with our fellow Parisians and everyone around the world moved by the devastation the fire caused,” the publisher said on its website on Wednesday. “Notre-Dame is an integral part of Paris, a city to which we are deeply connected. Seeing the monument in peril like this affected us all.”

In addition to encouraging others to donate to the restoration efforts, the company said, “We want to give everyone the chance to experience the majesty and beauty of Notre-Dame the best way that we know how.”

The company, which is known for the Assassin’s Creed and Watch Dogs franchises, is headquartered in Montreuil, a suburb of Paris, and also has studios throughout the world, with locations in Montreal. Toronto, San Francisco, Malin, Barcelona, and Shanghai.

For over 14 months, the game company’s designers recreated the interior and exterior of Notre Dame Cathedral for “Assassin’s Creed Unity,” which was set in 18th century France.

Experts have been wondering in the wake of the fire, which destroyed most of the roof and the spire, whether or not the technology that Ubisoft used to create the virtual cathedral might be useful in rebuilding the church.

“It is important to keep in mind that what we did for the game was not a scientific reconstruction but rather an artistic vision,” Ubisoft said in a statement. “While we wanted to be very precise with details, there are some differences in terms of scale and with some elements. That being said, we would be more than happy to lend our expertise in any way that we can to help with these efforts.”

Photo from PBS

Nintendo Gets Go Ahead to Sell Switch Console in China

Nintendo may have just hit the jackpot in a good way; they can now sell their Switch Console in China.

Nintendo shares were up by more than 15 percent Friday afternoon in Tokyo after its Chinese partner Tencent Holdings received approval to sell its Switch console in the southern province of Guangdong.

Authorities in Guangdong, where Tencent is registered, posted the news on their website Thursday according to Reuters, saying they had permission to start distributing the Switch with a test version of New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe

China brought its 15-year ban on video game consoles to an end in 2015, but Sony’s PlayStation and Microsoft’s Xbox have struggled to gain significant traction in the huge local market. This was followed by a ban on new video games last year, which was partially lifted in December, with Tencent winning approval for some games at the start of 2019.

Some analysts see more potential for Nintendo’s games roster than rivals Sony or Microsoft because of the popularity of properties such as Mario, Zelda, and Pokemon in China. Nevertheless, progress in the market is likely to be slow, with new titles needing to be individually approved and a big backlog in applications that are believed to have built up during last year’s ban.

Consoles need approval from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, while software needs permission from the State Administration of Press and Publication.

With Nintendo being able to sell their Switch in China now, it will help its stock prices which had dropped sharply in January due to cutting the project sales of their console. The stock price has been down by 11 percent for the last 12 months.

 

Photo from CNET

Legislation Introduce to Raise the National Legal Age of Smoking

It is very possible that the smoking age across the United States will be raised to 21 very soon. This announcement has pushed the agenda forward.

Last Thursday, Sen. Mitch McConnell announced that he will introduce legislation aimed at raising the national smoking age to 21, from 18.

This bill, which will be introduced next month, will cover all tobacco products including vaping devices.

McConnell, R-Ky.,  made the announcement in his home state, which is one of the nation’s largest tobacco producers. He noted that Kentucky has some of the highest cancer rates in the country. From 2012-16, lung cancer made up 66 percent of all cancer deaths in the state, according to the American Cancer Society.

Under the legislation, it will remain the responsibility of retailers to verify the age of anyone buying tobacco products just like it is right now with alcohol.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 9 out of 10 cigarette smokers first try smoking cigarettes by 18.

McConnell said vaping devices pose the “most serious threat,” especially to middle school and teenage students, and raising the age to 21 will present fewer opportunities for children to access these devices.

More than 3 million U.S. high school students used e-cigarettes in 2018, up 78 percent from the year before, the CDC found in its annual National Youth Tobacco Society.

Those numbers, however, have been reported to be as high as 5 million when counting middle schools too.

However, the bill will have an exemption for men and women who serve in uniform, according to McConnell who is currently the Senate Majority Leader.

“I hope my legislation will earn strong, bipartisan support in the Senate,” McConnell said. “I’m confident many of my colleagues will agree that protecting our young people from starting tobacco use at an early age can have remarkable, long-term health benefits for Kentucky and the country.”

Tobacco giant Altria, which is the maker of Marlboro and other brands of cigarettes, said it “strongly supports raising the legal age of purchase for all tobacco products.”

“This is the most effective action to reverse rising underage e-vapor usage rates,” the company said in a statement.

Currently, there are eleven states — Arkansas, California, Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, Maine, Massachusetts, Oregon, Virginia, Washington, and Utah — that have already enacted laws that set 21 as the minimum age to buy tobacco products.

Three other states — Delaware, Maryland, and New York — are on the verge of enacting similar standards as well, according to the anti-smoking group Tobacco Free Kids.

Earthquakes Underestimated in California

If you live in, or plan on living, in Southern California in the near future, take this as a note. There will be plenty of earthquakes (mainly small ones) that you will have to deal with on a consistent basis.

In a ten year period from 2008 and 2017, the southern part of California was hit by over 1.8 million earthquakes. This is 10 times more than previously thought, a new study found.

Seismologists at the California Institute of Technology found approximately 180,000 earthquakes had been recorded during that time.

The data from the daily recordings showed that the region experienced at least 495 quakes a day. or roughly one every three minutes. The reason that most of these earthquakes were missed was simply because they were just too small to notice, even for the best technology.

“It’s not that we didn’t know these small earthquakes were occurring,” said Zachary Ross, lead author of the study and soon to be assistant professor of geophysics at Caltech. “The problem is that they can be very difficult to spot amid all of the noise.”

The study about these earthquakes was published last Thursday in the peer-reviewed journal Science.

Researchers did state that it was hard to find the smaller quakes or temblors because seismic data also includes background noise such as building construction and shaking from traffic.

To find the quakes, seismologists used a technique called “template matching,” where an easily-identifiable earthquake signal is used as a template to find matching data indicating a temblor. Researchers also used an array of powerful computers to scan the earthquake catalog and verify the new earthquakes.

Most of the smaller temblors that were found by scientists were between negative 2.0 and 1.7.

In a statement, Michael Gurnis, director of the seismological laboratory and geophysics professor at Caltech, said the study “has opened a new window, allowing us to see millions of previously unseen earthquakes and this changes our ability to characterize what happens before and after large earthquakes.”

 

Photo from Time Magazine

Samsung Cancels Chinese Launch of Galaxy Fold

Samsung was looking to hit a home run with the introduction of the Galaxy Fold, a smartphone that is foldable. However, the first people to get the phone have had some of the worst experiences that anyone has experienced with similar devices.

As a result of this, Samsung has reportedly postponed the Chinese launch of its forthcoming Galaxy Fold smartphone, according to SamMobile. They reported that the issue wasn’t due to problems with the phone itself but due to the lack of a venue.

This also has resulted in the cancellation of planned events in Hong Kong and Shanghai that were set to take place on Tuesday and Wednesday. This news came from Richard Lai’s Twitter. Lai is the editor in chief for Engadget Chinese.

As of press time, Samsung has not made an official report explaining why the cancellations happened, and they have not said if they plan on rescheduling the phone’s release.

This comes after numerous reports from various tech journalists and big names who found the devices they had to review ended up breaking after a couple of days. Some of the issues ranged from the hinge or screen breaking and some curious users removed the protective covering from the screen, which resulted in the phone breaking.

Samsung did release a statement on those reports, saying that it “will thoroughly inspect these units in person to determine the cause of the matter.” However, all reports have indicated that they still plan on moving forward with the US launch date of April 26th, which is this Friday.

Samsung has a lot riding on this first-generation device. The $1,980 phone is the highest-profile foldable phone to hit the market, and reports that the devices are breaking after just a couple of days of use is potentially a huge setback.

 

Photo from Android Central

Measles Outbreak Hitting the Country Hard

The battle over vaccinations has taken a turn for the worse in New York.

The widening measles outbreak has prompted public health officials to take extraordinary measures to limit the spread of the highly contagious virus.

The city of New York will be making unvaccinated people in high-risk areas in Brooklyn get immunized or they will face fines upwards of $1,000. Schools in Washington have barred hundreds of students from classes and school events due to an outbreak there.

Hospitals in some areas are currently screening kids who have a fever and/or a rash in the nation’s second-worst outbreak since the supposed elimination of measles in 2000.

But what about people who can’t – or shouldn’t – get vaccinated?
Of course, with any battle involving health, public trust must be taken into consideration. Parents vaccinate their children in order to protect them from preventable diseases. This also helps those who can’t get vaccinated due to age or other health issues like cancer.

Continue reading Measles Outbreak Hitting the Country Hard

Error: Facebook and Instagram Down For More Than 2 Hours

If you had troubles this morning trying to log into Facebook or Instagram, no worries, because you were not the only one.

Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp were all experiencing issues this morning for users worldwide.

Two of the most popular social media sites, Facebook and Instagram, were both inaccessible, with news feeds refusing to refresh and the main Facebook.com domain unavailable for more than two hours.

WhatsApp messages were also unable to be sent or received (it is like a form of texting). Most people headed over to Twitter to share their complaints and concerns before the return of their beloved sites. Messenger, Facebook’s chat service, was also down for more than two hours.

The outages appear to have started at around 6:30 AM EST this morning, and some locations were more widely affected than others.

A spokesperson for Facebook released a statement to the Verge saying they were aware that some people were having trouble accessing the Facebook family of apps. “We’re working to resolve the issue as soon as possible,” the statement read.

Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp all started to come back online at around 9 AM ET this morning.

These issues come after Facebook dealt with a previous service outage that was the worst in the company’s history. It took over 24 hours before all of the issues were solved and for most users, it took hours before they were able to post on the social media sites.

Facebook blamed a “server configuration change,” and apologized for the outages.

 

Photo from Regenexx

2020 Presidential Hopeful Plans to Launch his Campaign via Hologram

The 2020 presidential race is slowly picking up the pace with numerous Democratic candidates entering the race to see if they can be the one to replace current president Donald Trump as he looks for re-election. One hopeful is going to officially announce his campaign with something that has only been used in music so far.

Through the use of holograms, 2020 presidential contender Andrew Yang hopes he can be in two places at once while campaigning for the Democratic nomination.

Yang, 44, told TMZ that he was testing out the technology so that he could more easily campaign in the early battleground states of Iowa and New Hampshire. While talking to TMZ, Yang would demonstrate the technology, which has been made famous because of Tupac Shakur, who was shot and killed back in 1996.

“Well, if you look closely at that footage, you’ll see it’s actually not me performing with hologram Tupac. That’s a hologram of me,” Yang explained. “I was doing a demo of what a hologram would consist of in order to send the hologram me to campaign in Iowa and other battleground states so I could be in two places or three places at once.”

Yang is a noted tech entrepreneur from New York who has a following of supporters. Some of his supporters use the name “Yang Gang” to refer to themselves, and they use sites like Reddit and 4Chan.

He is also known for his outside of the box ideas, which include cutting down on the number of circumcisions in the United States, making Tax Day an official holiday, and giving $1,000 to every single American.

As of right now, Yang is a minor candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, as he is currently polling at 0.8%, according to RealClearPolitics. However, he has raised over $2 million in campaign donations with 80,000 donors, which is enough to qualify him for the first Democratic presidential debate.

 

Photo from CNN

Hurricane Season is Upon Us But There’s Good News in Sight

We have officially just started hurricane season here in the United States. The season which runs until November officially has not been kind to us in these past two seasons, with devastating hurricanes hitting the East Coast from Florida to North Carolina.

This season, however, is likely to be different from the previous two.

Thanks to a weak El Nino, experts are expecting a weak, slightly below average Atlantic hurricane season. This information was composed by meteorologist Phil Klotzbach and other experts from Colorado State University.

They predicted that there will be 13 named tropical storms that will form, five of which will become hurricanes.

An average season has 12 tropical storms, six of which are hurricanes. The past two seasons were above average seasons.

A tropical storm becomes a hurricane when its wind speed reaches above 74 mph.

Of the five predicted hurricanes, two are expected to spin into major hurricanes – Category 3, 4 or 5 – with sustained wind speeds of 111 mph or greater. The group said there’s a near-average chance for major hurricanes to make landfall along the U.S. coastline. Klotzbach put the chance of a major hurricane strike at 39%.

Last year, Florence and Michael combined to kill more than 100 Americans and cost nearly $50 billion in damage, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said.

The team predicts that 2019 hurricane activity will be about 75% of the average season. By comparison, 2018’s hurricane activity was about 120% of the average season.

The prediction from Colorado State last year was nearly spot on; they had predicted 14 tropical storms would form, of which seven would become hurricanes. In all, 15 tropical storms developed, and eight strengthened into hurricanes.

One of the major determining factors in hurricane forecasting is whether the USA is in an El Niño or La Niña climate pattern.

Google Introduces New Gaming Platform

Welcome to the never-ending battle royale of gaming, Google. Now look to see your opponents, which are just as rich as you are and also have the experience that you do not have.

It was announced at the annual Game Developers Conference that the search engine was introducing its new Stadia gaming platform, looking to make it easier to not just make video games but play them on any screen you own including phones, computers, and TVs.

Stadia, which will launch later in 2019, has promised many new ways to connect with games, which will include a Play button on YouTube videos that will launch you from the video into that game.

While at the annual event on Tuesday in San Francisco, Google demonstrated the new platform by showing a video of the game “Assassin’s Creed Odyssey.” They showed how a “Play” button on the YouTube video could transport the viewer right into the game.

Often a player gets the urge to play a game while watching a video but has to boot up a game console or another program on their computer. This Stadia feature would get players into a game in “as quick as five seconds with no download, no patch, no update and no install,” said Google vice president and general manager Phil Harrison, a former Sony and Microsoft game executive who joined Google last year to work on this new project.

“Stadia offers instant access to play … (and reduces) the friction between getting excited about a game and playing a game,” he said at the event in front of hundreds of reporters and gamers.

The many other features built into Google’s game-streaming platform include Crowd Play for instant joining and coordination of multiplayer games and Google Assistant-style help, which will allow gamers to get in contact with customer service much easier.

Just this past October, Google began Project Stream, a four-month PC streaming video game test that included Ubisoft’s “Assassin’s Creed Odyssey” among many other games.

Now, Google will have its very own game system. Welcome to the world of gaming; just hope you last longer than the SouljaGame.

Photo from Google

The First Ever Photo of a Black Hole is to be Released Soon

For us, the sheer power of a black hole is something that we do not want to experience. The fact that we can be swallowed up at any given moment is frightening and amazing at the same time.

However, we have never seen a picture of a black hole due to it being well, a black hole. We have known of them for decades now, but soon we will see an actual picture of a black hole.

Next Wednesday, at several press briefings around the world, scientists will apparently unveil humanity’s first-ever photo of a black hole, the European Space Agency said in a statement. What is even more amazing is where the picture is coming from. The black hole, “Sagittarius A,” is at the center of our Milky Way galaxy.

But aren’t black holes, well, black, and thus invisible, so none of our telescopes can “see” them? Yes – therefore the image we’re likely to see will be of the “event horizon,” the edge of the black hole where light can’t escape.

Even that will be challenging, however, as the black hole at the center of our galaxy is “shrouded in a thick cloud of dust and gas,” according to Science Alert. Even more confounding is that spacetime around a black hole is “weird.”

The picture might be hard to see at first. This is due to the fact that black holes are actually collapsed stars. Their gravity is so strong that even light can not escape from the grasp of the hole. So the photo may show a dark blob surrounded by a ring of bright light, according to Yahoo.

Science News said that the black hole research was done using the Event Horizon Telescope, a network of eight radio observatories around the world.

It was reported by Popular Mechanics that this announcement taking place next week, whatever it could be, will be something that we have never seen before.

Press briefings will be held simultaneously in the U.S, Brussels, Santiago, Shanghai, Taipei, and Tokyo.

Looking To Make Money Lying In Bed For 60 Days?

Are you thinking about different ways to pay for your college? Well, how about lying in a bed for 60 days to pay off most of your tuition? It seems like a good idea, but is it good for your body?

Scientists are looking for women to stay in bed for 60 days to help them study how weightlessness affects the human body. The reward for participating in this study will pay about $18,522 or most of the tuition needed for your studies here at Radford.

Of course, it will be looking at astronauts and when they are in space. The weightlessness that is caused by the microgravity changes their body. That results in reduced physical stress in their bodies, which over time leads to muscles and bones to break down and body fluids to shift towards their heads.

This info is from the German Aerospace Center, which was commissioned by NASA and the European Space Agency to conduct this study.

NASA has previously done a similar study, though it was much shorter. Continue reading Looking To Make Money Lying In Bed For 60 Days?

Twitter Introduces Their “Lights Out” Dark Mode

Ever since Twitter introduced their dark theme for their mobile devices back in 2016, there were complaints about it not being dark enough. Well, Twitter has listened and they have introduced their true version of dark mode for iOS. (Sorry Android users).

Earlier this week, the new feature was released to users who have iPhones.

This new mode takes advantage of OLED screens’ ability to display pure black – they achieve this by turning off the pixels entirely to produce the darkest possible shade of black. This feature looks and works best on the most recent iPhones, which is why the feature is currently only available on iPhones only.

If you’re using one with an LCD display, you’ll still see a darker shade of black than before.

However, the switch between the old dark mode and the Lights Out version is not too big; yes, the new version is darker while the old version has a blueish tint, but it seems like the older version was better for the eyes.

In order to switch to this mode, you will need to head to your settings on the Twitter app and tap on the dark mode toggle and select the Lights Out option.

This feature is not available to Twitter users that have Android phones, but the company has promised that the new feature will be available to them very soon.

 

Photo from Metro

Verizon Introduces a Free Version of Their Call Filter

More and more people are looking at different cell phone companies just based off whether or not there will be a system for blocking out robocalls, which reached record highs in the past couple of years.

Verizon is releasing their features for free to customers after telling their customers of the features earlier in the week. They would fulfill that promise with Call Filter, which previously cost $2.99 per month per line.

The free version, which has the same name as the paid service, will be available to Verizon customers on the App Store and Google Play.

Some of the features that will be available on the free version of Call Filter include a spam detection, spam filter, and the ability to report numbers. Users will also get an alert if the incoming call is likely to be spam. Verizon will also let you determine your level of risk, which in return will help the network be able to block calls for you automatically, sending them to voicemail.

The free version has been released already, but Verizon did state that it will take about three weeks before all of its customers will have use of it. You won’t need to sign up for an unlimited plan to get the service, but Call Filter will not be available to prepaid users.

The service won’t be limited to just Android and Apple phones, as it will work with basic phones along with BlackBerrys and the discontinued Windows Phone. The setup will vary with each phone as users with those phones will have to call Verizon, head to a store, or log in to their accounts online.

Now, there will be some features that will not be available on the free version of Call Filter, which is why Verizon will be still offering the $2.99 version of Call Filter. Those who opt to pay for it will also gain Caller ID to identify the names of unknown callers, plus the ability to create personal spam and block lists.

Those who have the paid version will also get a “robocall risk meter,” a scale on your screen based on the fraud risk, ranging from low to medium, to high. The paid version will also provide users the ability to research and look up spam numbers.

It was also announced on Thursday that Verizon has successfully designed a “verified calls” feature on its network that helps you determine whether a caller is legit, showing you a notification that it is verified alongside the full ten digit number. This will be a function under the premium Call Filter services.

The company has started deploying verification across its network and will continue doing so over the next few months.

Verizon is not the first company to be entering the race to fight back against spammers as AT&T and Comcast made the announcement last week that they have completed their first verified call between their respective networks.

T-Mobile was the first to launch a  call verification on its mobile network, which took place earlier this year. However, it was only doing so for calls between T-Mobile customers and on a limited amount of devices as it waits for other carriers and networks to roll out the feature.

 

Photo from Forbes

Apple Cancels Their AirPower Project

Apple’s AirPower is officially dead. Yep, the wireless charger that would have been able to charge any Apple product is not going to be produced.

The product was first announced alongside the iPhone X in 2017; however, Apple has officially killed off the project.

When it was initially announced, the AirPower was touted as being capable of wirelessly charging an iPhone, AirPods, and an Apple Watch at once, something that has not been seen or done before. At the time, Apple had this product releasing in 2018. Well, 2018 has come and gone by, and now, we will never see this product in households.

A statement from Apple was first provided to Tech Crunch and has been confirmed by USA TODAY. Apple stated that they felt the charging pad did not reach their standards, therefore resulting in the cancellation of the product entirely.

“After much effort, we’ve concluded AirPower will not achieve our high standards and we have canceled the project. We apologize to those customers who were looking forward to this launch. We continue to believe that the future is wireless and are committed to push the wireless experience forward,” said Dan Riccio, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Engineering to Tech Crunch.

There have been persisting rumors that Apple had issues with hardware in trying to manufacture the pad. Sonny Dickson, a notable Apple leaker, wrote in a blog that the company had issues with heat management, interference, and the accuracy and speed of charging Apple products.

You may remember the battery issues that Samsung had with one of their Galaxy phones a couple of years back. Apple most likely did not want to have those issues with their AirPower, resulting in the pad’s cancellation.

This comes after Apple announced their latest version of the AirPods, which will come with a wireless charging case.

In what seems to be an ironic and cruel twist, anyone who buys the next generation of the wireless-charging buds will have a reference to, and in some cases a picture of, the now-canceled AirPower on its packaging.

What was meant to be a game changer will now be just a footnote on a box.

Gearbox Announces the Next Entry of Borderlands

After a long few years, Gearbox, the gaming company known for its Borderlands series, finally decided that in order to get back on track, it is time for the third game.

This news has been long-anticipated by fans, but it is now official: the third Borderlands game is coming out soon, according to Gearbox. After months of rumors, hints, and teases, the game was officially announced on Friday. There is no word on platforms (Xbox and PlayStation will be assumed here) or a release date, but it has been suggested by 2K Games, the publisher, that it will be out within this coming fiscal year, which will be next April.

This is the fourth entry in the critically and commercially successful loot-shooting Borderlands series, after the first two games and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel, which came out in 2014.

Borderlands 3 looks very similar to the three previous games, which were very popular and liked by critics and gamers.

This news, which is great for Gearbox, comes after a few difficult years for the independent studio located in Frisco, Texas. They have dealt with two high-profile games that were poorly received due to their graphics. Aliens: Colonial Marines, which was released in 2013, became infamous after a pre-released demo exposed the game for graphics that were flashy and fake compared to the real game’s. In 2016, an attempt to appeal to the fans of the hero shooters, but that game flopped just as hard as the Aliens game.

Now, the company will hope to win new fans as well as bring back old fans with a new entry to its most successful series to date.

However, for right now, fans will have to wait for more news, and according to Gearbox, there will be more to reveal to fans on April 3.