HDL or good cholesterol can be life threatening, says a new study

Contrary to claims that good cholesterol is beneficial to the heart, a new study has showed that very high levels may be associated with an increased risk of heart attack and death.

The findings showed that people with high-density lipoprotein (HDL or good) cholesterol levels of 41-60 mg/dl (milligrams per decilitre) had the lowest risk of heart attack or cardiovascular death.

However, the risk increased in people with low levels (less than 41 mg/dl) as well as very high levels (greater than 60 mg/dl) of HDL cholesterol.

People with HDL cholesterol levels greater than 60 mg/dl had a nearly 50 per cent increased risk of dying from a cardiovascular cause or having a heart attack compared to those with HDL cholesterol levels 41-60 mg/dl.

“It may be time to change the way we view HDL cholesterol. Traditionally, physicians have told their patients that the higher your ‘good’ cholesterol, the better,” said Marc Allard-Ratick, from the Emory University in Atlanta, US.

“However, the results from this study and others suggest that this may no longer be the case,” he added.

The bad effects of very high HDL cholesterol were consistent even after controlling other risk factors for heart disease such as diabetes, smoking, and low-density lipoprotein (LDL or bad) cholesterol, as well as other factors such as alcohol intake, race, and sex.

HDL cholesterol has been considered “good” because the HDL molecule is involved in the transport of cholesterol from the blood and blood vessel walls to the liver and ultimately out of the

body, thereby reducing the risk of clogged arteries and atherosclerosis, the researchers explained.

The study investigated the relationship between HDL cholesterol levels and the risk of heart attack and death in 5,965 individuals, most of whom had heart disease.

The results were presented at the ESC Congress 2018, the annual conference of the European Society of Cardiology in Munich, Germany.


Wear OS by Google Redesigned With New Notification Stream, Android Pie-Like Quick Settings, Fresh Assistant Interface

Wear OS by Google Redesigned With New Notification Stream, Android Pie-Like Quick Settings, Fresh Assistant Interface

New Wear OS update will start rolling out next month


  • New Wear OS update brings an improved notification stream
  • Swiping down will open up the Quick Settings
  • Swiping right will open the Google Assistant page

Google has now rolled out an update to Wear OS bringing a completely new design, inspired by Android Pie. The Wear OS by Google update has overhauled how notifications look, how the quick settings interface looks, and brings improved Google Assistant support. This comes right after the Google Fit interface was changed to look more like Apple Watch’s activity goals. The Wear OS software was initially neglected by Google, and didn’t receive regular updates to keep consumers and manufacturers enticed. However, this update brings a lot of nifty improvements making the software an attractive offering once again.

First up, Wear OS notifications are now seen in a stream format, and they open with a simple swipe up. The new notification stream shows notifications from different apps, and differentiates them with colour-tinges for more ease. For example, Hangouts gets a red tinge, while Android Messages notifs have a blue tinge. It also brings along built-in smart reply to enable conversation without leaving the notification stream. These notifications also show the time at which you received it.

Swiping down brings out the Wear OS Quick Settings menu, and it has options like Airport Mode, Find My Phone, battery percentage, Google Pay, and more. To see more settings, there is a dedicated settings button right on top, and the interface looks very similar to the one seen on Android Pie Quick Settings.

ezgif.com resize (2) Wear OS

To bring up Google Assistant on Wear OS, users need to swipe right, and it pulls up the weather, a time-related greeting, and the mic shortcut to launch the voice search option. Furthermore, the interface shows you the commute time to work, flight status, your schedule for the day, your next event, etc. You can press on each of these to see more information.

Finally, swiping left in the new Wear OS version brings up the new redesigned Google Fit app, with its new features called Move Minutes and Heart Points. The former is designed to highlight your physical activity, the other one allows you to detail what activities are impacting your heart. The updated Google Fit uses sensors on your smartphone or smartwatch, such as the accelerometer and GPS, to detect your moves automatically and estimate the number of Heart Points you earn.

Google says that the new Wear OS features will begin rolling out next month (which isn’t far), and some features may vary by phone OS, watch, or country.


Acer at IFA 2018: Acer Swift 5, Aspire Z 24 All-in-One PC, OJO 500 Mixed Reality Headset, and More

Acer at IFA 2018: Acer Swift 5, Aspire Z 24 All-in-One PC, OJO 500 Mixed Reality Headset, and More

Acer launched numerous new hardware products at its pre-IFA 2018 event in Berlin.


  • The Acer Swift 7 was previewed at the event
  • The OJO 500 headset comes with a detachable design
  • Several gaming accessories were also unveiled

Taiwanese electronics giant Acer on Wednesday made a lot of major hardware announcements at its pre-IFA 2018 event in Berlin. These include a preview of the Swift 7, pricing and availability details for the Acer Swift 3 and Acer Swift 5, new gaming monitors and accessories in the Predator and Nitro gaming series, refreshes across its Aspire notebook and all-in-one PC portfolio, the new OJO 500 Windows Mixed Reality headset, new commercial laser projectors, the Chromebook 514, and VirZOOM – a VR headset technology focused towards fitness. Let’s get into the details now.

Acer Swift 7, Swift 5, Swift 3 notebooks

Touted to be the ‘world’s thinnest 15-inch notebook’, the Acer Swift 5 was initially launched at the next@acer conference held in New York in late May this year. The laptop weighs just about 990 grams and is powered by the latest 8th generation Intel Core i5-8265U and i7-8565U processors. The Acer Swift 5 has a claimed battery life of 10 hours and runs Windows 10. Bezels on this notebook measure just 5.87mm and give the display an 87.6 percent screen-to-body ratio.

The 14-inch Acer Swift 5 has also been updated this year and the ultra-portable notebook now comes packed with the same processors as its 15-inch counterpart. This variant weighs about 970 grams and is 14.9mm thick.

acer swift 5 Acer

Acer Swift 5

The 15-inch variant of the Acer Swift 5 will be available in North America starting January 2019, starting at $1,099 (roughly Rs. 77,600); in EMEA (Europe, the Middle East, and Africa) in November, starting at EUR 1,099 (approximately Rs. 90,600); and in China, in November, starting at CNY 7,499 (around Rs. 77,600).

The 14-inch Acer Swift 5 will be available in EMEA in September, starting at EUR 999 (roughly Rs. 82,300); and in China, in November, starting at CNY 7,499 (approximately Rs. 77,600).

Apart from the Swift 5 series, the Swift 3 lineup has also been updated by Acer at its pre-IFA event in Berlin. The line now includes new models with options of 13.3-inch and 14-inch panel dimensions. The smaller variant, with a 13.3-inch display, sports a full-HD panel, weighs about 1.3kg, and has a thickness of 15.9mm. It comes with specifications including up to 8GB of RAM, up to 512GB of NVMe PCIe SSDs, 2×2 Wi-Fi 802.11ac, and 4G LTE capabilities.

The Acer Swift 3 with 13-inch display will be available in EMEA in October starting at EUR 799 (roughly Rs. 65,800).

Lastly, two models with 14-inch panels have been unveiled by Acer at the event. Both are powered by the latest 8th generation Intel Core i3, Core i5, and Core i7 processors, and come with up to 8GB of RAM and up to 512GB of SSD storage. These two models will be available in North America in November, starting at $799.99 (about Rs. 56,500) and in EMEA in January 2019, starting at EUR 799 (approximately Rs. 65,800).

Acer also teased the Swift 7 laptop at the pre-IFA event with claims of it being ‘the thinnest laptop in the world’ with a 14-inch display. It is said to be less than 1cm thick and weighs less than 1kg. Apart from that, it will run the flagship 8th generation Intel Core processors. Pricing and availability were not announced at the event.

Acer Predator, Nitro gaming portfolio

Acer teased its mammoth Predator X gaming desktop at IFA 2018. The specifications make this a heavy-duty gaming machine: two Intel Xeon processors, 12 slots for RAM with up to 16GB in each, and two Quadro RTX 8000. Pricing details have not been revealed yet.

The interesting new Predator Triton 900 convertible 2-in-1 gaming laptop was also announced with a reversible 4K panel that supports Nvidia’s G-Sync technology. The laptop features Acer’s 4th generation Aeroblade 3D fans and a mechanical keyboard. As is the case with the Predator X, no pricing and availability for the Triton 900 have been revealed.

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Acer Nitro monitor

Lastly, three new gaming-focused desktops have been refreshed in the Predator Orion range – the Orion 9000, Orion 5000, and Orion 300. These desktops come with up to Intel Core i9 processors, up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, and IceTunnel 2.0 which is exclusive to the 5000 and 9000 series.

Acer, at its pre-IFA 2018 event, also unveiled four new gaming monitors, a gaming-focused chair, and other gaming accessories including a mouse, keyboard, backpack, headset, and mousepad in the Predator and Nitro series. New monitors include one variant of the Predator XB273K and three variants of the Nitro XV273K. All of the monitors offer 27-inch panels with ultra high definition resolution, with two in the Nitro series offering a WQHD resolution. They also arrive with Acer-specific features such as VisionCare with Flickerless, BlueLightShield, ComfyView, and low-dimming technologies.

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Acer Predator Triton 900

The Predator XB273K gaming monitor will be available in Q4 2018 in North America, starting at $1,299 (roughly Rs. 91,800); in EMEA, starting at EUR 1499 (around Rs. 1,23,500); and in China for CNY 9,999 (roughly Rs. 1,03,400).

The Acer Nitro XV273K will be available in Q4 2018 in North America, starting at $899 (about Rs. 63,500); in EMEA starting at EUR 1049 (about Rs. 86,400); and in China for CNY 6,999 (roughly Rs. 72,400). The Acer Nitro XV272U will be available in Q4 2018 in North America, starting at $499 (approximately Rs. 35,200); and in EMEA starting at EUR 599 (around Rs. 42,300). The Acer Nitro XF272U will be available in Q4 2018 in North America, starting at $449 (roughly Rs. 31,700); in EMEA starting at EUR 529 (about Rs. 43,600); and in China for CNY 3,999 (roughly Rs. 41,300).

“Our battle-tested Predator gaming monitors have proven their quality and reliability as a top choice of pro-gamers and tournaments around the world,” said Victor Chien, President, Digital Display Business. “We’re now waterfalling our experience and technology to our Nitro series to make premium gaming experiences more accessible to users.”

The Acer Nitro optical sensor mouse was also unveiled with seven buttons including a burst fire button. It comes with up to 4,000 dpi which is six-level adjustable. It will be available in North America in Q4 2018, for $29.99 (about Rs. 2,100); in EMEA in Q4 2018 for EUR 34.99 (around Rs. 2,900); and in China in Q4 2018 for CNY 199.99 (about Rs. 2,100).

The Acer Nitro keyboard will be available in the market in the fourth quarter of 2018. Pricing is as follows: $29.99 for the US (about Rs. 2,100), EUR 59.99 (roughly Rs. 4,900) for EMEA, and CNY 249.99 (around Rs. 2,600) in China. The Acer Nitro Headset will be available in Q4 this year in North America for $39.99 (about Rs. 2,800), in EMEA starting at EUR 49.99 (roughly Rs. 4,100), and in China for CNY 249.99 (about Rs. 2,600). The Acer Nitro Backpack will be available in North America in Q4 2018, for $29.99 (approximately Rs. 2,100); and in EMEA in Q4 2018 starting at EUR 39.99 (about Rs. 3,400); and in China in Q4 2018 for CNY 199.99 (about Rs. 2,200).

Lastly, the Acer Nitro Mousepad will be available in North America in Q4 2018, for $14.99 (around Rs. 1,100), in EMEA starting at EUR 19.99 (about Rs. 1,600); and in China in Q4 2018 for CNY 79.99 (or about Rs. 800).

Acer Aspire range
Next up is the company’s affordable Aspire range of notebooks and all-in-ones PCs. First off is the new Acer Aspire Z 24 all-in-one PC that includes features such as a thickness of 11mm, a glossy V-shaped metal stand, a far-field microphone array with four digital microphones, the latest 8th generation Intel Core i7+ processors, and up to 32GB of Intel Optane memory. It has a 23.8-inch full-HD IPS panel with a 178-degree viewing angle.

The all-in-one PC will be available in North America in October, starting at $899 (roughly Rs. 63,500); and in EMEA in October, starting at EUR 899.99 (about Rs. 73,100).

acer aspire 5 inline Acer

Acer Aspire 5

For the portable PC market, Acer has unveiled the new Aspire 3, Aspire 5, and Aspire 7 laptops across different price segments. Most premium of the lot, the Acer Aspire 7 features options of 8th-gen Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processors and sports up to an Ultra HD display.

In terms of pricing, the Aspire 5 will be available in EMEA in December 2018 starting at EUR 549 (approximately Rs. 45,200). The Aspire 3 series will also be available in EMEA starting December this year starting at EUR 399 (around Rs. 32,900). Pricing of the Aspire 7 was not revealed.

Acer Chromebook 514
Acer has also unveiled its brand new Chromebook 514 targeted at college students as well as young professionals. The Chromebook comes with an aluminium chassis and sports a 14-inch full-HD IPS display that has an optional touch screen. Thanks to the minimal Chrome OS, Acer claims a 12-hour battery life on the Chromebook 514. The touchpad on the notebook is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass.

acer chromebook 514 Acer

Acer Chromebook 514

The Acer Chromebook 514 will be available in North America in October, starting at $349.99 (roughly Rs. 24,700); and in EMEA in the approved Chrome OS territories starting at EUR 349 (about Rs. 28,800).

Acer OJO 500 Windows Mixed Reality headset
The latest OJO 500 Windows Mixed Reality headset comes with a detachable design, patented built-in sound pipe technology, and software-assisted interpupillary distance (IPD) adjustment technology. The headset sports two front-hinged 2.89-inch LCD panels with a resolution of 2880×1440 pixels, refresh rate of up to 90Hz, and 100-degree FoV.

Acer OJO 500 Acer

Acer OJO 500 Windows Mixed Reality headset

With the help of inside-out tracking the Acer OJO 500 Windows Mixed Reality headset requires no external hardware and can be set up within 10 minutes. It comes in an optional configuration with two Bluetooth enabled motion controllers, a Windows 10 button, touchpad, and grab button. The Acer OJO 500 will be available in North America in November, starting at $399 (around Rs. 29,000), and in EMEA in November starting at EUR 499 (about Rs. 41,000).

At Acer’s pre-IFA event in Berlin on Wednesday, the Taiwanese corporation announced the availability of VZFit, the company’s second-gen commercial VR fitness system. VZFit makes use of the OJO 500 mixed reality headset. “VirZOOM’s new 2nd generation commercial product VZfit is a turnkey package of Sensors, VZfit Console, and Acer Windows Mixed Reality that anyone can set up in five minutes to turn a commercial stationary bike into a VR Fitness System,” said VirZOOM Co-Founder and CTO, Eric Malafeew.

virzoom acer Virzoom

VZfit is immediately available direct from VirZOOM, through its global partner Life Fitness, and Gym Source in the United States. Pricing has not been detailed.

Laser projectors
Acer at the event also announced four new laser projectors of which two (PL6610 and PL6510) are from the PL series while the other two (SL6610 and SL6510) are part of the SL range. The former is targeted at heavy usage commercial customers while SL series laser projectors are designed for projection in tight spaces such as classrooms.

acer pl projector Acer

Acer PL projector

Both categories of laser projectors offer 1.6X zoom and the optional setups enhance installation flexibility along with diversifying placement avenues. The projectors come with inbuilt 10W speakers for audio. Pricing and availability for none of the markets has been revealed yet.


Netflix Indian Original Series Selection Day Gets December Release Date

Netflix Indian Original Series Selection Day Gets December Release Date

Netflix’s next original series from India, Selection Day, now has a release date: December 28. Based on Indo-Australian Aravind Adiga’s 2016 novel of the same name, Selection Day is “a coming-of-age drama about two brothers Radha and Manju Kumar who are raised by their strict, obsessive father to be star cricket players in India”. The show stars the likes of Mahesh Manjrekar (Vaastav, Kaante), Ratna Pathak Shah (Sarabhai vs Sarabhai), and Rajesh Tailang (Siddharth), while newcomers Yash Dholye and Mohammad Samad play the two brothers. It has been produced by Anil Kapoor Film & Communication Network and London-based Seven Stories.

Here’s the full official synopsis for Selection Day from Netflix:

“Fourteen-year-old Manju is destined for cricket greatness. There’s only one problem, he hates cricket. Controlled from a young age by his overbearing and cricket-obsessed father, Manju’s main role in life is to support his older brother and fellow cricket star, Radha. When the family moves to Mumbai and the brothers start at a new school, Manju discovers his interests outside of cricket and starts slipping away from Radha and his father’s grasp. More importantly, Manju becomes friends with Radha’s greatest cricket rival, a boy who is the very definition of freedom and confidence — concepts Manju has never experienced himself.”

“With Selection Day, Netflix is once again bringing Indian talent onto the world stage,” Kapoor said in a prepared statement. “India is a land rich with stories and we can now share these across the globe. I can’t think of a better way of bringing people together.”

“When I read Aravind Adiga’s beautiful and brilliant book, I felt that this was a story that deserved a global stage,” producer Anand Tucker, who is co-founder and CEO of Seven Stories, said. “I hope audiences from Minnesota to Mombasa to Mumbai will all love this show. The fantastic creative partnership we have with Netflix has enabled us to bring this universal story of family, cricket and coming of age to thrilling life.”

“We are excited to share this joyous and emotional coming of age story with India and the world,” Netflix’s director of international originals Simran Sethi added. “Selection Day is an amazing opportunity to expand our array of programming after the exciting debuts of Sacred Games and Ghoul”.

This is the first Netflix original for Kapoor’s AKFC and Tucker’s Seven Stories. The former is known for producing movies such as Veere Di Wedding and Khoobsurat, while the latter was launched in September 2015 by Tucker and Sharon Maguire, with backing from All3Media.

For Netflix, Selection Day will be the fourth original series in total and for the year, after Sacred Games, Ghoul, and Little Things. It has also released multiple original films in 2018, including Love Per Square Foot, Lust Stories, Brij Mohan Amar Rahe, and the upcoming Rajma Chawal.