TechCrunch: Google okays fantasy sports and rummy apps in India in a pilot

TechCrunch: Google okays fantasy sports and rummy apps in India in a pilot. “Google plans to run a pilot to permit daily fantasy sports apps and rummy games on Play Store in India, addressing a request from the local community that has long expressed frustration at the Android-maker for not welcoming services on its store in the world’s second-largest market that it allows in many parts of the world.”

One Good Thing: 32 years after its debut, Microsoft Solitaire is still a blissful time-waster (Vox)

Vox: One Good Thing: 32 years after its debut, Microsoft Solitaire is still a blissful time-waster. “There’s a pleasant, throwback quality to solitaire in this age of doomscrolling. For a few minutes at a time, I can look away from the rest of the world and just look for a way to get to the six of clubs that I know I need to finish this game.”

The Verge: Wikitrivia is a web game that challenges your knowledge of historical dates

The Verge: Wikitrivia is a web game that challenges your knowledge of historical dates. “If you’re a history buff, or are looking for a new web game to play, Wikitrivia may be worth your time. The game’s creator, Tom Watson, describes it on his site as ‘Wikidata as a trivia card game,’ and the tweet that brought it to our attention called it an ‘online clone of the card game Timeline.’”

New York Times: Bridge Was Their Passion. Then People Started to Die.

New York Times: Bridge Was Their Passion. Then People Started to Die.. “For decades, the Colorado Springs Bridge Center had been a social hub for retirees immersed in the world of trumps, tricks and cutthroat bidding strategies. The players would spend afternoons inside their clubhouse with a view of Pikes Peak, snacking on popcorn and celery sticks and showing off photos of their grandchildren while playing hand after hand. Now, the club had become a new breeding ground for a virus that has carved through family funerals, church gatherings, nursing homes and choir practices across the country, striking groups of older, vulnerable people with cruel efficiency.”

Magic: The Gathering Arena takes Friday Night Magic online as local stores shutter (Rock Paper Shotgun)

Rock Paper Shotgun: Magic: The Gathering Arena takes Friday Night Magic online as local stores shutter. “It’s not a great time for physical games. While us videogames lot are enjoying more time than ever to play, it’s practically impossible to run a weekly board or card game meet when all the shops are shut and any human interaction could lead to contracting a (potentially deadly) virus. In an effort to keep the magic alive, Wizards Of The Coast are running three weeks of special Friday Night Magic events to help MTG communities stay alive online with Magic: The Gathering Arena.”

CNET: Facebook’s new card-playing bot shows AI can work with others

CNET: Facebook’s new card-playing bot shows AI can work with others. “Facebook has already built artificial intelligence-powered bots that can crush pros in popular games such as Texas Hold’Em poker and the board game Go. On Friday, the company’s AI researchers said they’ve conquered another challenge: creating a bot that can achieve high scores in a card game called Hanabi that involves teamwork.”

The Next Web: Why ‘Magic: The Gathering’ is AI’s toughest challenge

The Next Web: Why ‘Magic: The Gathering’ is AI’s toughest challenge. “Games make the perfect teaching environment for developers to train machine learning models in, but which game produces the strongest AI? You can put your money on DeepMind’s AlphaGo or OpenAI’s DotA 2-playing machine, but we’ll take whichever one is the first to master Magic: The Gathering – humanity’s hardest game.”

Columbia University: Albert Field Playing Cards go online

Columbia University: Albert Field Playing Cards go online. “The Columbia University Libraries has digitized cards from nearly two hundred decks of the Albert Field Collection of Playing Cards. The cards date from the 16th century through to 1801, and were mostly European – French, German, English, and Italian, though we slipped in one deck from a very new United States.”

Poker Forum TwoPlusTwo Database Hacked

A database for a poker players’ forum has been hacked. “More than 400,000 members are subscribed to the TwoPlusTwo forum, and it is believed that every username, password, and email address has been extracted, along with any personal data included in members´ profiles. Although the passwords were hashed, simple passwords are fairly easy to decipher. Therefore, if you are a TwoPlusTwo subscriber, it is fair to assume that your details have been hacked.”