FBI led Brazil to suspected militants mulling Olympic attack: prosecutor

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation gave Brazil the tip that led to arrests this week of 11 suspected militants who had discussed a possible attack on the upcoming Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, according to a Brazilian prosecutor.

UPDATE 1-IMF grants two-year $3.5 billion credit line to Morocco

RABAT, July 23 (Reuters) – The International Monetary Fund
(IMF) has granted Morocco a two-year $3.5 billion credit line
for structural reforms to prompt more rapid and inclusive
economic growth,…

Elizabeth Warren Teams Up With Barack Obama To Tout Wall Street Reform

WASHINGTON ― Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) joined President Barack Obama for the White House’s weekly address to tout actions the administration has taken to reform Wall Street and reduce the risk of another financial crisis.

“President Obama delivered. He signed into law the toughest Wall Street reforms and strongest consumer protections in generations. Trust me ― I’m a pretty tough grader,” said Warren, a former professor at Harvard Law School. “These new rules are making our financial system more transparent, getting rid of a lot of fine print, and making sure that if a bank screws up, you have someone to call so you don’t get stuck with the bill.”

Before Warren was elected to the Senate in 2012, she played an essential role in creating the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a government consumer advocate. Senate Republicans blocked Warren from heading up the agency.

“Before the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, you didn’t have a strong ally to turn to if your bank took advantage of you, or you were being harassed or charged inappropriate fees,” Obama said. “Now you do.”

Republicans have repeatedly attacked the agency, trying to limit its budget and create more bureaucracy that would make it more difficult for the agency to act.

Warren appeared with Obama a day after Democratic presumptive nominee Hillary Clinton announced that she would choose Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) as her running mate. Warren was also a contender for the ticket.

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The quest to get a unique SNES CD-ROM prototype working again

Part 1 of Ben Heck’s SNES-CD restoration project (part 2 at the bottom of this post).

Since a prototype of the fabled, unreleased SNES-CD (aka the “Nintendo PlayStation”) was first found and disassembled last year, we’ve learned enough about this one-of-a-kind piece of hardware to actually emulate homebrew games as if they were running on its CD-ROM drive. The prototype console itself, though, has never been fully functional—it couldn’t generate sound, the CD-ROM drive wouldn’t spin up, and, after a recent trip to Hong Kong, it actually stopped generating a picture.

That’s when the prototype’s owners, Terry and Dan Diebold, went to famed gaming hardware hacker Ben Heck. They want this piece of gaming history up and running again. Heck documented his efforts in a fascinating two-part YouTube series that reveals a lot about the system and what makes it tick.

Terry Diebold starts off talking about how he first discovered the prototype SNES while boxing up an estate sale, where it was sold in a lot alongside CDs, cups, saucers, and other knickknacks. After paying $75 for the entire lot, Diebold recalls, “if you break it down to everything I did buy, I probably paid a nickel for it.”

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Eyes of the Animal lets you become a bat—in VR

Virtual reality may have launched with gamers in mind, but so far the most interesting applications for the technology have come from outside the games industry. Case in point: Marshmallow Laser Feast’s In the Eyes of the Animal, a VR experience showcased at this year’s Sundance film festival, which showed what it would be like to see and hear a forest through the eyes of its fluffy (and not so fluffy) inhabitants.

The experience is, as you might imagine, a strange one. When it launched, In the Eyes of the Animal was set in the dream-like Grizedale Forest in the Lake District. Amongst the ferns and ancient oaks, viewers strapped on an Oculus Rift headset (weirdly encased in a grass-covered pod), and were transported through a pink and purple landscape, transforming from a midge into a dragonfly, and then from a frog into an owl.

In the Eyes of the Animal was made using a combination of 360-degree cameras, drones, and laser and CT scans. London’s Natural History Museum pitched in too, offering up animal footage captured with photogrammetry, while surround sound and audio vibrations were added to help complete the experience.

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IMF agrees on two-year $3.5 billion credit line for Morocco

RABAT, July 23 (Reuters) – The International Monetary Fund
(IMF) has granted Morocco a $3.5 billion credit line for two
years to help it pursue structural reforms bringing more rapid
and inclusive…

A Magic: The Gathering addict moves to China

This piece is an edited excerpt from James Hsu‘s recent book, Magic: The Addiction: My 20-Year Gaming Journey. James is a life-long gaming enthusiast and technophile. He currently lives in Beijing.

Magic: The Gathering has opened many cultural doors for me. A game with the international reach of Magic allows its players to compete in locations around the world. In places like New York, Amsterdam, and Munich, I have played Magic with strangers, armed only with our mutual love of the game as a shared language.

This became an unexpected benefit in my early thirties as I relocated halfway around the world, from Canada to China, in search of a new beginning.

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Canada economy to rebound this year after energy slump: minister

TORONTO, July 23 (Reuters) – Canada’s economy should rebound
“over the course of the year” from the impact of a wildfire in
its energy heartland, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said on
Saturday on the…