The Naruto movie isn’t just real, it’s also got an acclaimed director at the helm.
Moon Knight’s Villain May Hold an Artifact With Wider MCU Connections
Per the Hollywood Reporter, Marvel director Destin Daniel Cretton(Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings) will direct andwrite an adaptation of Masashi Kishimoto’s beloved shonen. As with Borderlands, Lionsgate has been trying to get a movie for this off the ground since 2015, and it was confirmed to be back in the works last November following the success of Netflix’s One Piece. Cretton will also produce the project through his production company Hisako, alongside business partner Jeyun Munford.
Citing the success of Shang-Chi’sfirst movie, Kishimoto called Cretton “the perfect director for Naruto.” Clearly, he’s a fan: “After enjoying his other films and understanding that his forte is in creating solid dramas about people, I became convinced that there is no other director. In actually meeting [him], I also found him to be an open-minded director who was willing to embrace my input, and felt strongly that we would be able to cooperate together in the production process.”
Naruto is about the titular 12-year-old ninja in the land of Konoha who had a demonic fox sealed inside his body from the moment he was born. As he starts coming into those powers, he sets out to become the village leader alongside other ninja friends and foes. The overall franchise is extremely popular thanks to its anime and video game offshoots, along with the sequel series Boruto.
Windows 11 could soon deliver updates that don’t need a reboot
Windows 11 could soon run updates without rebooting, if the rumor mill is right – and there’s already evidence this is the path Microsoft is taking in a preview build.
This comes from a regular source of Microsoft-related leaks, namely Zac Bowden of Windows Central, who first of all spotted that Windows 11 preview build 26058 (in the Canary and Dev channels) was recently updated with an interesting change.
Microsoft is pushing out updates to testers that do nothing and are merely “designed to test our servicing pipeline for Windows 11, version 24H2.” The the key part is we’re informed that those who have VBS (Virtualization Based Security) turned on “may not experience a restart upon installing the update.”
Running an update without requiring a reboot is known as “hot patching” and this method of delivery – which is obviously far more convenient for the user – could be realized in the next major update for Windows 11 later this year (24H2), Bowden asserts.
The leaker has tapped sources for further details, and observes that we’re talking about hot patching for the monthly cumulative updates for Windows 11 here. So the bigger upgrades (the likes of 24H2) wouldn’t be hot-patched in, as clearly there’s too much work going on under the hood for that to happen.
Indeed, not every cumulative update would be applied without a reboot, Bowden further explains. This is because hot patching uses a baseline update, one that can be patched on top of, but that baseline model needs to be refreshed every few months.
Add seasoning with all this info, naturally, but it looks like Microsoft is up to something here based on the testing going on, which specifically mentions 24H2, as well.
Analysis: How would this work exactly?
What does this mean for the future of Windows 11? Well, possibly nothing. After all, this is mostly chatter from the grapevine, and what’s apparently happening in early testing could simply be abandoned if it doesn’t work out.
However, hot patching is something that is already employed with Windows Server, and the Xbox console as well, so it makes sense that Microsoft would want to use the tech to benefit Windows 11 users. It’s certainly a very convenient touch, though as noted, not every cumulative update would be hot-patched.
Bowden believes the likely scenario would be quarterly cumulative updates that need a reboot, followed by hot patches in between. In other words, we’d get a reboot-laden update in January, say, followed by two hot-patched cumulative updates in February and March that could be completed quickly with no reboot needed. Then, April’s cumulative update would need a reboot, but May and June wouldn’t, and so on.
As mentioned, annual updates certainly wouldn’t be hot-patched, and neither would out-of-band security fixes for example (as the reboot-less updates rely on that baseline patch, and such a fix wouldn’t be based on that, of course).
This would be a pretty cool feature for Windows 11 users, because dropping the need to reboot – to be forced to restart in some cases – is obviously a major benefit. Is it enough to tempt upgrades from Windows 10? Well, maybe not, but it is another boon to add to the pile for those holding out on Microsoft’s older operating system. (Assuming they can upgrade to Windows 11 at all, of course, which is a stumbling block for some due to PC requirements like TPM).
Weekend PC Game Deals: 2K hits, Wayne birthday specials, and AOE for cheap
Weekend PC Game Deals is where the hottest gaming deals from all over the internet are gathered into one place every week for your consumption. So kick back, relax, and hold on to your wallets.
The Epic Games Store originally announced three classic Fallout games would be going free this week, but the teaser later changed to a copy of Super Meat Boy Forever instead.
Arriving as a direct sequel to Super Meat Boy, this entry transforms the experience into an auto runner where you take control of Meat Boy or Bandage Girl to go up against Dr. Fetus. The brutal platforming levels are generated from premade segments made by Team Meat, and the difficulty is automatically adjusted on the fly depending on your skill level.
The Super Meat Boy Forever giveaway is available on the Epic Games Store until February 29. If no changes happen, unlike last time, coming up next as a freebie is the futuristic 3D side-scroller Aerial Knight’s never Yield.
In the bundle space, Humble introduced the IGN FanFest collection this week. This is a single-tier bundle carrying seven popular and quite well-received indie games.
It carries copies of A Little to the Left, Loop Hero, Tinykin, Black Book, Shantae and the Seven Sirens, Islets, and Wobbledogs.
The full bundle containing all Steam keys is available with a $12 price tag, and it’s slated to end in less than two weeks. Last week’s packed bundles containing puzzles and hit indie games are still active if you missed them too.
It’s a great weekend for anyone looking to try out new types of games. Three titles from wildly different genres have dropped in to try out via Steam.
Up first is Dying Light 2, which just turned two. The open-world zombie-filled action game is offering its campaign, with co-op support, to try out through the weekend. The latest update has brought firearms to the experience too. Next, No Man’s Sky is having another free weekend trial offer after last week’s one. Aside from exploring this alien universe, you can try out the game’s newest Expedition questline with friends here too.
Lastly, if you’re a strategy gaming fan, then Civilization VI’s free weekend is the way to go. The 4X game is offering up its full base game experience to explore lands, expand borders, exploit lands, and exterminate foes over the weekend.
A bunch of Batman-themed games, thanks to it being Bruce Wayne’s birthday, a 2K publisher sale featuring all its major franchises, all Age of Empires entries, and plenty of other titles are having major discounts right now. Here are our hand-picked big deals for this weekend:
The GOG store’s DRM-free deals are centered around titles with gore, classic Atari hits, and strategy entries. Here are some highlights:
Keep in mind that availability and pricing for some deals could vary depending on the region.
That’s it for our pick of this weekend’s PC game deals, and hopefully, some of you have enough self-restraint not to keep adding to your ever-growing backlogs.
As always, there are an enormous number of other deals ready and waiting all over the interwebs, as well as on services you may already subscribe to if you comb through them, so keep your eyes open for those, and have a great weekend.
Some Windows 11 updates may soon install without reboots
A reboot is required after the installation of many updates for Windows. This is definitely the case for the monthly cumulative security updates, but also for other updates. Windows 11 displays popups to the user when a restart is required, which can be disruptive.
Sometimes, Windows may even restart the computer automatically, which can lead to data loss and other unwanted outcomes. At other times, it may not give the user a choice to reboot without installing the update.
The next version of Windows 11, which is called Windows 11 2024 Update, may reduce the number of update reboots significantly.
Hot Patching is the answer
Microsoft is testing a new feature, which it calls Hot Patching. This is not a new technology, as Microsoft is using Hot Patching already in some Server products.
As it stands, Hot Patching may reduce the number of update reboots to four per year. Right now, Microsoft releases a security update each month. Each of these requires a reboot. Then there is the feature update release, which also requires a reboot. Other updates, like critical security updates for 0-day issues, also require reboots.
Hot Patching relies on baseline updates. These are released every quarter, and these continue to require restarts.
Microsoft explains Hot Patching on the linked support page:
It works by patching the in-memory code of running processes without the need to restart the process
Hot Patching has a number of benefits according to Microsoft, including faster update installations and less resource usage during installs, improved protections and security risks, and less impact on workloads.
As for security, hot-patched systems are protected the moment the patch is installed. Traditional updates may take effect only after the system has been rebooted.
Integrated in Windows 11 builds already
The latest Windows 11 Dev Channel build, which is build 26058, supports the functionality. After installation of the build, users should see the new build string ge_release_svc_hotpatch_prod1.240211-0859.
Hot patching requires a PC with Virtualization Based Security enabled. One way of checking whether the technology is enabled on a Windows PC is the following:
Open the Start Menu.
Type System Information.
Run the System Information result.
Scroll down the System Summary section in the program window that opens until you find the Virtualization-based Security entry.
Check it if says “Running” or “Not Enabled”.
Hot Patching is in development right now. If it lands, it will reduce the number of reboots after updates. Hot Patching won’t eliminate the need to reboot after updates. Besides baseline updates, there may also be other update releases that may require a reboot. These can be critical security updates, driver updates, and other types of updates that require it.
There is one caveat; it is unclear, at this point, if all editions of Windows 11 will get Hot Patching support. It is possible that the functionality is artificially limited to Windows 11 Education and Enterprise, and Windows 365.
Arnold press vs military press: which is best for stacked shoulders?
It probably doesn’t come as a surprise that shoulder exercises are the second most highly searched exercise on Google (just after back exercises), racking up more than 33,000 searches a month. After all, sculpted shoulders are what help us achieve that desirable V-shape, making our upper body appear broader and our waists smaller.
Two classic shoulder exercises are the military press and the Arnold press, named after Mr Schwarzenegger himself. Both compound exercises are popular in bodybuilders, powerlifters and strongmen/women’s strength plans, sharing similarities, but also some distinct differences. So, is one better than the other for building boulder shoulders? With the help of an expert, we try to answer that very question.
Is the Arnold press good?
“One of the benefits of the Arnold press is that the rotational movement of your palms engages more muscle fibres, which in theory (if done correctly) should stimulate greater muscle growth,” says Nick Mitchell, CEO and founder of Ultimate Performance. “This will also improve your shoulder mobility and flexibility.”
The Arnold press is where you hold two dumbbells at shoulder height in a supinated grip (palms towards your face), as you press them up, you externally rotate your forearms, so by the time your arms are fully extended, your hands are in a pronated grip (palms facing forwards). It targets all three deltoid heads as well as the triceps, upper chest and traps, whereas the regular shoulder press focuses on the front deltoids, so this takes it to the next level.
To execute well, you should focus on that mind-muscle connection and not go too heavy, so you really feel your shoulders working. “At all times, think ‘deltoids’ and really focus on squeezing them throughout the entire movement,” says Nick. While the exercise isn’t particularly difficult to perform, the external rotation will place more pressure on the shoulder joint. If you’re new to strength training you therefore may be better starting out with a regular shoulder press and then progressing onto the Arnold press.
A final tip from Nick is to keep your elbows back when extending the arms. As he explains this helps to hit your posterior and medial deltoid muscles more, “which will give that “capped’ look to your shoulders, that everyone is after”.
What about the military press?
If it’s functional strength you’re looking to develop in your shoulders, then the military press is a great go-to. “This is your standard press for overall shoulder development, which will primarily hit your front deltoids,” explains Nick. It also works your triceps, upper back, upper pecs and core.
The exercise is performed standing with a barbell (although Nick says you can do it seated on a weight bench if you struggle to keep a neutral spine). Holding the barbell in front of your chest with a pronated grip, and hands just slightly wider than shoulder width apart, you then push the barbell vertically above your head and then lower it back to your chest. It’s what’s known as a ‘strict press’, so you don’t use any momentum from your legs to help you complete the lift (that’s a push press).
It’s not the most ‘beginner-friendly’ shoulder exercise as you’ll require decent core strength to keep you stable and balanced. “If that’s an issue, then you can either lower the weight and slow down the time it takes to lower the bar,” says Nick. “Or another option is to adopt a split stance, whereby pressure is taken off any lower back hypertension by placing one leg anything from 2 to 20 inches in front of the rear foot.”
If you can master it, Nick says it’s excellent for muscle activation and hypertrophy. Plus, it also has great carryover for the bench press, Olympic lifts and other overhead pressing exercises.
Nick says that both exercises are ‘mutually exclusive’, because when it comes to growing your shoulders he says the key is to hit your deltoids from all angles. By doing both the Arnold press and military press, you’ll be achieving this. Also, while neither exercises are ‘easy’, the military press is more advanced, because you have to maintain a stable base to lift from.
If you don’t have time to do both (or simply didn’t want to) then Nick suggests thinking about your personal goals instead. “If you’re just looking for raw strength, then go for the military press, because you can really load up the barbell and get stronger in a short space of time,” he says. “If the more rounded, ‘capped’ and complete, look of your shoulders is what you’re after, then incorporating the Arnold Press (or even a Scott Press) is worthy of inclusion.”
[VoltLog] never has enough space on his bench. We know the feeling and liked his idea of mounting his oscilloscope on an articulated arm. This is easy now because many new scopes have VESA mounts like monitors or TVs. However, watching the video below, we discovered there was a bit more to it than you might imagine.
First, there are many choices of arms. [VoltLog] went for a cheap one with springs that didn’t have a lot of motion range. You may want something different. But we didn’t realize that many of these arms have a minimum weight requirement, and modern scopes may be too light for some of these arms. Most arms require at least 2 kg of weight to balance the tensions in their springs or hydraulics. Of course, you could add a little weight to the mounting plate of the arm if you needed it. The only downside we see is that it makes it hard to remove the scope if you want to use it somewhere else.
Assuming you have a mount you like, the rest is easy. Of course, your scope might not have VESA mounting holes. No problem. You can probably find a 3D printed design for an adapter or make (or adapt) your own. You might want to print a cable holder at the same time.
Honestly, we’ve thought of mounting a scope to the wall, but this seems nicer. We might still think about 3D printing some kind of adapter that would let you easily remove the scope without tools.
How to use TikTok and other data-sucking apps without giving up your privacy
TikTok and other social media and entertainment apps are engaging and fun. However, you could be giving up your privacy by letting developers, advertisers, and foreign governments access your biometric data, location, photos, search history, browsing habits, and more.
While high-profile people like celebrities, executives, and government officials must be extra careful, most of us can use the internet in a carefree manner. Still, security and privacy are important details everyone should keep in mind while browsing the internet and installing apps. Even budget Android phones allow apps you’ve installed to access your personal data if you accept the terms and conditions and authorize sharing.
Is using TikTok risky?
TikTok is a great resource for entertainment and education. Some people even make money when their videos go viral. So is it okay or risky to use, and why?
One of the risks of using TikTok is that it uses an alarming amount of data. In part, this identifies which content you will find most appealing. That’s the same reason Facebook gives for collecting your data: to train the algorithm.
That’s all good if your private information is kept secure. However, that isn’t always the case. Advertisers are sold some of your details, hackers can harvest information, and governments can demand access in some cases.
As annoying as ads can be, providing private information to hackers and spies is worse. That’s why some governments ban apps like TikTok.
You can borrow a page from action movies for the most extreme privacy. In other words, make an alternate identity and use a different phone.
Use a burner phone
A good but inexpensive Android phone might be a wise purchase if privacy and security are important for your job or personal life. You can protect your primary phone and most important data for a few hundred dollars.
Keep your personal phone number private by grabbing a burner number
Create an alternate identity
Create a new Google account so that you can log in without giving away your Gmail address. Use a different name and fill in fake details anytime you’re asked. You can still like and share your favorite videos since nothing will be connected to the real you.
Protect your network
Before you sign in to an app from an unknown brand or developer, turn on a VPN and choose a server in another region or country to hide your location.
Instead of using your regular home or office Wi-Fi, check for an option to use a Guest Wi-Fi network. Many modern routers can create a Wi-Fi signal for guests to limit access to other devices on your primary network.
If making a fake ID and buying a burner phone sounds too extreme, there are simpler methods of limiting your risk. You can lock down some data sharing within TikTok and other apps.
Don’t share your contacts
TikTok and other social media apps pester you into sharing your contacts. The idea is to find people you already know on the network. That might be convenient, but it’s also a way to harvest information and build a network of links to you, your coworkers, friends, and family. Always select Cancel, Don’t Share, and No when you have the option to share more data.
If you’ve already shared contacts, you can revoke access from TikTok settings.
Open your Profile.
Tap the menu button in the upper-right corner.
Select Settings and privacy at the bottom of the screen.
Under Account, choose Privacy.
Select Sync contacts and Facebook friends.
Switch off both sync options.
That stops new contacts from syncing.
To remove current contacts from TikTok, use the two options labeled Remove previously synced.
Turn off ad targeting
TikTok personalizes advertising so that you learn about products and services that are relevant to your life and tastes. That sounds great, but it also means you’re providing personal preferences that could be used against you if that data ends up in the hands of someone malicious.
You can switch off ad targeting to prevent TikTok from sharing so many of your details with advertisers. In Settings/Privacy, scroll down and select Ads, then switch off Using Off-TikTok activity for ad targeting.
You can also turn off personalized ads in How your ads are personalized.
TikTok and other social media apps aren’t the only companies hungry for your private data. It’s valuable to any app or service that shows ads. Advertisers pay more when ads can be targeted to appeal to a particular demographic.
It makes sense. If you’re a vegan, you don’t want to see an ad about a steak house. However, an advertisement for non-dairy ice cream might be welcome. Showing relevant ads isn’t always a bad thing, but it’s good to have a choice about when and what you share. To learn more, check out our guide on how to protect your privacy on your Android phone.
Daytime shots with the main camera are detailed, with a decent depth of field, but it doesn’t always nail the exposure, and colors sometimes appear oversaturated. There’s a warm, pink tone evident in several of the photos I took. You can get a touch of natural bokeh using the main camera if you tap to focus on your subject, and there’s a portrait mode if you want a more pronounced blur on the background. When the sun goes down, you can expect noise to start creeping in, and bright areas can get blown out. But hold still and night mode does a decent job.
Disappointingly, the main camera is flanked by an average 8-MP ultrawide and a virtually useless 2-MP macro lens. The ultrawide takes photos with slightly cooler colors, but it’s much noisier than the main camera and struggles in low light. I can’t see the point of the macro lens at all, as it only seems to produce unfocused low-resolution shots. The main camera takes better close-ups.
The poor secondary cameras might not be a big deal, since most folks will stick to the main shooter. There is also a decent 16-MP front-facing camera for selfies and video calls. The best-quality video option is 4K at 30 frames per second, or you can opt for 1080p at up to 240 fps. The video I shot looked reasonably smooth and sharp.
Beyond the inconsistent camera, the other major compromise here is the software. The Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ runs Android 13 out of the box, with Xiaomi’s busy and frustrating MIUI over the top. I would have preferred Xiaomi’s revamped HyperOS over Android 14, as you get with the Xiaomi Poco X6 Pro (7/10, WIRED Review). You get three years of Android updates and four years of security patches with the Redmi, which is the minimum we would expect.
Bloatware is an issue, with a host of apps and games that you will likely want to uninstall immediately. But the phone comes with Google’s Play Store out of the box and will happily accommodate your favorite apps, with bags of storage available. The Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ does support 5G and worked just fine here in the UK, but check the specs page for bands. It also supports Wi-Fi 6, rather than 6E or 7, but that will suffice for most folks.
Ultimately, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ is a solid option for the money. The biggest quandary I see for shoppers looking at the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ is that the comparable Xiaomi Poco X6 Pro is almost £100 cheaper. In this price bracket, you should also consider Google’s Pixel 7A (8/10, WIRED recommends) and Samsung’s Galaxy A54 5G (8/10, WIRED recommends). You can find more options in our Best Android Phones guide.
Leaked Images Suggest the Nothing Phone 2a Might Look Like This
Nothing Phone 2a — the UK startup’s upcoming smartphone scheduled to launch on March 5 — could arrive in two colour options. Details of the handset have surfaced online more than once in the past few weeks, and now the design of the Nothing Phone 2a has been posted to X (formerly Twitter) by a tipster. These images corroborate recently leaked images of the phone that suggest it will feature a horizontal dual rear camera layout and a simplified Glyph LED layout.
Tipster Evan Blass (@evleaks) leaked images of the upcoming Nothing Phone 2a on X (formerly Twitter). These images show the handset in black and white colourways — the company’s previous smartphones are also available in the same colour options. The image of the Phone 2a in black shows the rear panel as well as the phone’s screen, while the white option shows the rear panel.
The black colourway of the Nothing Phone 2a shows three Glyph interface lights located in the top half of the rear panel. These lights surround a centre-aligned horizontal dual rear camera island is slightly raised. The LED flash is located near the camera module, as per the leaked image.
Both images of the white and black options for the Nothing Phone 2a show that nothing has opted for a more simplified version of the Glyph interface. The rear panel also sports a different design compared to the Nothing Phone 1 and Phone 2 — both of these handsets offer support for wireless charging. The power button are shown on the right edge, while the volume buttons are on the left.
The leaked image of the Nothing Phone 2a in black also gives us another look at the phone’s screen. It is shown with minimal bezels and a centre-aligned hole punch cutout for the selfie camera. The latest leak showing the smartphone’s purported design appear to corroborate images that were recently shared by another tipster, with only two weeks to go before it debuts in India and global markets on March 5.
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For details of the latest launches and news from Samsung, Xiaomi, Realme, OnePlus, Oppo and other companies at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, visit our MWC 2024 hub.
Google now lets you dress up your Android mascot with a new customizer
What you need to know
Google introduces a new tool to customize your Android robot, offering a fresh twist on the classic Androidify experience, allowing you to make it uniquely yours.
Located on the Android homepage, the tool provides a wide array of options for clothing, materials, accessories, and props.
After customization, you can generate a QR code or download your creation as an avatar.
Google brings back the Androidify fun with a fresh twist—a fun new tool to customize your own Android robot with tons of options to make it totally you and use it to chat, post on social media, and more.
Last year, Google brought back the classic Bugdroid character in a 3D makeover, ditching the 2D head-only logo. Now Android users can deck it out with clothes, pick materials, add accessories, and throw in some props (via 9to5Google).
The “Customize your own Android Bot” tool is found right on the Android homepage, offering a ton of choices. You’ve got 25 materials to play with, from a soccer ball to camouflage and leopard skin. And when it comes to dressing up your Android mascot, choose from 20 outfits, including a space suit.
You’ve got 20 accessories too, including headphones, eyeglasses, scuba masks, and even bunny ears. Plus, pimp out your Android bot with one of 20 props, like an Xbox controller or a digital camera.
When you’re done, click the check button in the props tab and snag a QR code for your bot or download it as your avatar. You can keep going back for round two whenever you feel like building more avatars.
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That said, some users noticed the lack of a rainbow color option despite the showcase of a rainbow bot when the redesign was announced.
This new interactive tool brings back memories of the old Androidify app, which allowed you to transform a Bugdroid into your doppelgänger. It was cool, but it had its last update in 2016 and was removed from the Google Play Store in 2020.
Googl said the fresh robot mascot comes with more looks, and that’s exactly what you’ll find in this new avatar maker. It’s not exactly Androidify, but think of it as the same vibe with a slick rebranding into this cool web tool.
According to the site’s blurb, Google launched this tool right in time for the Mobile World Congress (MWC) happening next week.