After nearly 14 years of operations, Gawker.com will be shutting down next week, the company's outgoing CEO Nick Denton told the staff Thursday. The decision comes days after Univision said it would buy Gawker Media properties -- Gizmodo, Jezebel, Kotaku etc (but not Gawker.com) -- for a sum of $135 million. The publication is currently in the middle of multiple lawsuits, with billionaire Peter Thiel revealing his clandestine legal campaign against the company. In a blog post, Gawker made the announcement. From the story:Nick Denton, the company's outgoing CEO, informed current staffers of the site's fate on Thursday afternoon, just hours before a bankruptcy court in Manhattan will decide whether to approve Univision's bid for Gawker Media's other assets. Staffers will soon be assigned to other editorial roles, either at one of the other six sites or elsewhere within Univision. Near-term plans for Gawker.com's coverage, as well as the site's archives, have not yet been finalized.
An anonymous reader writes:A little over nine million keys used to redeem and activate games on the Steam platform were stolen by a hacker who breached a gaming news site last month. The site, DLH.net, provides news, reviews, cheat codes, and forums, was breached on July 31 by an unnamed hacker, whose name isn't known but was also responsible for the Dota 2 forum breach. The site also allows users to share redeemable game keys through its forums, which along with the main site has around 3.3 million unique registered users, according to breach notification site LeakedSource.com, which obtained a copy of the database. A known vulnerability found in older vBulletin forum software, which powers the site's community, allowed the hacker to access the databases. The data stolen from the forum includes full names, usernames, scrambled passwords, email addresses, dates of birth, join dates, avatars, Steam usernames, and user activity data. Facebook access tokens were stolen for those who signed in with their social account.
Strong evidence supporting a new strategy against drug addiction has been revealed by research. The researchers showed that a compound that inhibits the activity of certain brain-cell receptors can reverse signs of cocaine dependency in rodents.
A new article explains how the country's environmental licensing is under threat from proposed laws and constitutional amendments. These have jumped into the forefront as anti-environment politicians rush to exploit the opportunity offered by Brazil's current political turmoil. Legislators are eager to stimulate the country's economy, as by removing environmental and social restrictions on proposed development projects.
A profound new level of complexity and interaction among genes within specific tissues responsible for mediating the inherited risk for cardiometabolic diseases have been identified by researchers, including processes that lead to heart attack and stroke.
The availability of accurate and reliable information on the location of impoverished zones is surprisingly lacking for much of the world. Applying machine learning to satellite images could identify impoverished regions in Africa, say researchers.
Biological engineers have devised a way to record complex histories in the DNA of human cells, allowing them to store and retrieve memories of past events. This system could help scientists study how cells differentiate during embryonic development; experience environmental conditions; and undergo genetic changes that lead to disease.
Researchers have identified the protein that norovirus uses to invade cells. Norovirus is the most common viral cause of diarrhea worldwide, but scientists still know little about how it infects people and causes disease because the virus grows poorly in the lab. The discovery, in mice, provides new ways to study a virus notoriously hard to work with and may lead to treatments or a vaccine.
Researchers have made further progress on the path to fully rewriting the genome of living bacteria. Such a recoded organism, once available, could feature functionality not seen in nature. It could also make the bacteria cultivated in pharmaceutical and other industries immune to viruses, saving billions of dollars of losses due to viral contamination.
Immune memory ensures a quick, specific response to previously encountered pathogens. However, for rapidly evolving pathogens like influenza virus, there is concern that recalled ('old') antibodies dominate and compromise the response against a changed ('new') infectious strain. A mouse study reports that while influenza exposure history does influence the antibody response to a circulating flu virus, this does not appear to compromise the defense against the new strain.
With an estimated 500,000 human infections and 50,000 deaths annually, visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is the second most prevalent parasitic killer, behind malaria. Leishmania parasites are transmitted through the bite of phlebotomine sand flies. A study makes the case that fighting the insects by treating cattle with the long-lasting insecticide, fipronil, could substantially reduce VL in areas where people and cattle live in close proximity.
Beth Mole, writing for Ars Technica: Always keeping your house tidy and spotless may earn you the label of "neat freak" -- but "super happy" may be a more accurate tag. When people voluntarily take on unpleasant tasks such as housework, they tend to be in particularly happy states, according to a new study on hedonism. The finding challenges an old prediction by some researchers that humans can be constant pleasure-seekers. Instead, the new study suggests we might seek out fun, uplifting activities mainly when we're in bad or down moods. But when we're on the up, we're more likely to go for the dull and dreary assignments. This finding of "flexible hedonism," reported this week in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, may seem counterintuitive because it suggests we sabotage our own high spirits. But it hints at the idea that humans tend to make sensible short-term trade-offs on happiness for long-term gains. "Although our data cannot directly tell us whether regularly engaging in unpleasant activities predicts psychological and social adjustment five or 10 years down the line, a large body of work has consistently demonstrated the importance of sleeping, employment, and living in a reasonably clean and organized home on mental and physical health," according to the study authors, led by Maxime Taquet of Harvard and Jordi Quoidbach of the University Pompeu Fabra in Spain.