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When Google released the Pixel last year, it was taking a stand. No longer would Google hardware be tainted with the brands and logos of other companies, even if behind the scenes, Google still needed help from those same companies to actually build its phones. And despite designs that were almost offensively ugly, a lack of standard flagship features such as water-resistance and expandable storage, and massive supply chain problems that made it hard to actually buy one months after its initial release, there were bright spots like the Pixel's excellent HDR photo mode and an untainted Android experience.

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Researchers from Sweden made headlines last week after claiming to have found the Arabic characters for "Allah" and "Ali" woven into Viking burial costumes. The discovery suggested a more intimate cultural relationship between the Vikings and the Arab world, but some experts are now questioning key assertions made by the Swedish researchers.

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The Los Angeles Police Department approved a test program to deploy drones alongside its officers on Tuesday, with the Police Commission voting 3-1 to roll out a year-long "small Unmanned Aerial System" program.

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In recent years, superbugs have become one of the biggest threats to modern human health. At present, the CDC estimates that some 23,000 people die every year from multidrug-resistant infections in the United States. The threat of antibiotic-resistant bacteria to global health is big enough that this year the World Health Organisation for the first time published a list of the 12 superbugs that pose the greatest threat to humans.

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Donald Trump's appointment of former Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as chief of the Environmental Protection Agency this year drew eyebrows, because Pruitt had made his career as a longstanding legal opponent of the EPA and a prominent climate change sceptic. Since he's been put in charge of the agency, Pruitt has allegedly made plans to water down federal scientific research on the climate, deflected from the issue during natural disasters, and cut loose hundreds of employees in a deregulation push.

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In the lead up to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China this month -- a major changing of the guard which will see widespread retirements among senior leaders -- the country's censors have been cracking down on everything from an unnerving sex doll-sharing company to even milquetoast criticism of the government in the media. Now, popular Chinese social media app WeChat has begun restricting how its users can use the platform in an effort to offset its potential use in protests.