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    China export restrictions pose new risk for TikTok sale in US

    [ad_1] China’s inclusion of new technologies on an export restrictions list could hamper TikTok’s sale in the US, according to state media reports, in the latest ratcheting up of trade tensions between the two countries. China’s Ministry of Commerce revealed late on Friday the government had added items including those related to computing and artificial intelligence to a list of technologies subject to export controls. In an interview with the state-run Xinhua news agency, Cui Fan, a government adviser, suggested that the new measures could impact the sale of TikTok by ByteDance, its Chinese owner, because they cover some of its underlying technologies. He added that the company, which has…

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    Coronavirus latest: France to extend mask wearing to all of Paris as Covid-19 spreads

    [ad_1] The US justice department has requested Covid-19 data from four states as it considers civil rights investigations into the deaths of nursing home residents. The department said it was requesting the data from New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Michigan, citing orders in those states that required nursing homes to admit coronavirus-infected patients. Italy on Wednesday reported its biggest one-day increase in coronavirus cases in more than three months as Europe contends with a sharp uptick in infections. The country reported 1,367 new cases up from 878 the previous day, taking the total caseload to 262,540. The country’s death toll has climbed to 35,458. Italy is one of several…

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    Oil rises ahead of two dangerous storms hitting Gulf Coast

    [ad_1] Oil prices rose on Monday, led higher by a jump in US gasoline futures as two dangerous storms careered towards the fuel refining hub on the US Gulf Coast. Tropical storm Laura, which was expected to hit between Louisiana and Texas later this week, was now approaching hurricane strength and was gaining in intensity, warned the National Hurricane Center in Florida. “Laura is forecast to strengthen over the Gulf of Mexico and there is an increasing risk of dangerous storm surge, wind, and rainfall impacts along portions of the US Gulf Coast by the middle of the week,” the NHC said on Monday. RBOB gasoline futures, the benchmark for…

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    Socialising pushes Spain’s Covid-19 rate far above rest of Europe | Free to read

    [ad_1] Coronavirus is spreading far faster in Spain than in the rest of Europe, confronting the country with a race against time to bring the outbreak under control before the return to school and work next month following the holiday season. Figures published by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, an EU agency, on Friday indicated that in the previous 14 days Spain had reported about 145 new Covid-19 cases per 100,000 of population. Apart from Malta, no other European country had a ratio above 100, and the Spanish figures compare with ratios of 51 in France and 21 in the UK. In three districts of Madrid, the…

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    ‘No evidence’ Hizbollah leaders were behind murder of Rafiq Hariri

    [ad_1] A decade-long international investigation into the assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafiq Hariri has found no evidence that the leaders of Iran-backed paramilitary group Hizbollah were responsible for his killing, nor any “direct evidence” implicating the Syrian regime. The February 14 2005 suicide bombing that killed Hariri and 21 other people was a defining moment in the Middle East’s modern history, ultimately catalysing the end of almost three decades of Syrian military occupation of Lebanon. Although the assassination was “undoubtedly a political act” and “Syria and Hizbollah may have had motives to eliminate” Hariri, David Re, presiding judge of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, said: “There is no evidence…

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    Lukashenko tells Putin Belarus protests pose a threat to Russia

    [ad_1] Alexander Lukashenko has held telephone talks with Russia’s president Vladimir Putin after warning that the protests sweeping his country were “not just a threat to Belarus”. “Defending Belarus today is nothing less than defending all of our space,” he said, according to state news agency Belta. “If Belarusians don’t hold out, this wave will roll over there.” The Kremlin warned against “destructive forces that want to damage the two countries’ mutually beneficial co-operation,” and said the two men had expressed “certainty that all the problems that have arisen will soon be resolved.” Tens of thousands of people across Belarus have protested against Mr Lukashenko’s disputed win in last Sunday’s…

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    Coronavirus latest: US consumer prices grow for second consecutive month

    [ad_1] Peter Wells 8/12/2020, 3:07:10 PM Florida daily deaths top 200 for second consecutive day Florida reported more than 200 coronavirus deaths for the second day running and an elevated number of new infections, casting a cloud over recent improvements in daily case trends. A further 213 people in Florida died, the state health department revealed on Wednesday, down from yesterday’s record increase of 277. Over the past week, Florida has averaged about 164 deaths a day, down from a record rate of 185 earlier this month. Florida reported 8,109 people had tested positive for Covid-19 over the past 24 hours, up from 5,831 on Tuesday and above the seven-day average of…

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    The astonishingly good but predictably bad AI program

    [ad_1] When the chief executive of a San Francisco artificial intelligence company tries to damp down the hype surrounding his own technology then you know that some people have become rather excitable. But that is exactly what Sam Altman attempted to do last month in response to the ecstatic reaction to OpenAI’s latest GPT-3 program. “The GPT-3 hype is way too much,” Mr Altman tweeted. “It’s impressive (thanks for the nice compliments!) but it still has serious weaknesses and sometimes makes very silly mistakes.” GPT-3, which stands for generative pre-trained transformer version three, is, in essence, a super-sophisticated auto-complete function, which sounds less than exciting. But what makes GPT-3 remarkable…