Show Notes – June 1st, 2015



Quickly Check App and Device Compatibility In Preparation for Windows 10 With Windows 10 coming on July 29th, you’ll want to make sure your PC, applications, and various devices will all play nice before you reserve and upgrade. Fortunately, Microsoft has made it easy to do within the Get Windows 10 tool that appears on all copies of Windows 7 and 8.Upgrading your copy of Windows to 10 should be seamless, but you want to make sure set up is actually ready beforehand. T
Google’s Cardboard Design Lab teaches VR with (what else) VR Google debuted its larger and more robust Cardboard VR headset at I/O yesterday, now it needs some apps that actually run on it. However, designing a program in a virtual 3D environment is quite different than designing one to run on a 2D touchscreen…
Windows 10 build 10130 rolled out with slightly less ugly icons Another day, another Windows 10 build. This time it’s number 10130, available now for fast ring users. As Microsoft heads towards an expected July release of Windows 10, the changes between builds are much reduced, with a focus instead of fixing bugs and small refinements to the user experience. The most visible of these changes is some new icons. Earlier Windows 10 builds included some icons th
Google’s first partner for smart, sensor-laden clothes is Levi’s Remember when we said yesterday that Google’s Project Jacquard would lead to the advent of touch-friendly pants? Well, we were more right than we thought: During the Google ATAP address here at Google I/O 2015, Technical Program Lead Ivan Poupyrev co…
Suicide Girls: It would be “fucking awesome” if appropriation artist Richard Prince sues us The Creators Project talked to the Suicide Girls about how they are re-appropriating Richard Prince’s appropriated art. If Prince tries to sue the Suicide Girls for copyright infringement, Missy Suicide said: “That would be fucking awesome. He can go right ahead.”
“Lone wolf” and “roving wiretap” US surveillance powers expire Sunday The legal authority for the bulk telephone metadata program Edward Snowden disclosed is set to expire at the stroke of midnight on Monday. But there are lesser known Patriot Act surveillance measures also set to sunset at that time unless the Senate acts quickly. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican of Kentucky, has ordered the Senate to session on Sunday in an 11th-hour bid to s
Google Now Just Became the Most Compelling Reason to Use Android In the early years (like 5 years ago tbh), iPhone and Android were at odds. Closed vs. open; Design vs. customization. Now, those lines are more blurred than ever. But Android has always had one absolute ace, and Google I/O 2015 just proved it: Google Now.I don’t really need to explain that Google Now is great and that it keeps getting better and better—we’ve been beating that drum for awhile. But
SkyMall is Here to Stay — Design News Pin it When SkyMall filed for bankruptcy in January, tchotchke lovers and unitasker enthusiasts the world over united in sadness. Yet after months of increasingly positive hashtag campaigns, SkyMall this week confirmed via Twitter that they’re back. C&A Marketing, a firm that revamps brands, bought the company at auction, and plans a greater digital presence (prepare to buy cow benches v
FCC’s Internet-for-the-poor plan sets up fight with Republicans A plan to bring a phone subsidy program for poor people into the broadband age is setting up a battle between Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler and Republicans in Congress. Wheeler yesterday announced his plan to overhaul Lifeline, which was founded in 1985 to provide discounts on phone service to low-income Americans. Lifeline is one of four programs paid for out of the Uni
NYC Households Pay An Extra $130/Month “Invisible Fare” To MTA, Report Finds The MTA is still struggling to close their capital budget deficit of $14 billion, calling on both City and State governments to step up their spending to help maintain, repair and expand the subway network that serves as this city’s life-sustaining circulatory system. But a new report commissioned by City Comptroller Scott Stringer’s office claims the city contributes far more cash to the agency
Recode joins Vox Media Recode, the tech news site founded last year by former WSJ journalists Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg, is being sold to Vox Media in an all-stock deal. Read the rest
Dinosaurs? Google Gives an Answer from Creationism, Not Science. Here’s Why… Google is apparently a creationist organization, and thinks dinosaurs are used to indoctrinate children into believing that earth is millions of years old. No, they didn’t put out a statement saying so. But if you Googled the term “What happened to the dinosaurs?” earlier today, you’d have seen some “information” from Ken Ham’s Answers In Genesis that contradicts the overwhelming scientific consen
Ransomware Keeps Growing – How Can You Protect Yourself? There are plenty of threats on the Internet, but few can be as scary as ransomware. These particularly nasty bits of malware not only infect a user’s computer, but they end up trying to get money out of them! It’s a despicable thing to do, but sadly, it’s part of the world in which we live. How does ransomware keep growing? How is it spreading. Everything you’ve every wanted to know about ransomwa
How Facebook is Killing the Open Web The way we use the web is changing. The rise of social networks and apps have created closed silos where people are spending increasing amounts of time, at the expense of the open web. There are a couple of ways for you to be reading this article: you could have entered into your browser and come here directly, you could have searched for something online and followed a link to this
Turn Your Fan On and Off Automatically Based on the Air Temperature From the lazy-but-totally-awesome files: Here are

Technocolorradio 05252015

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TechnocolorRadio 05182015 by Technocolorshow on Mixcloud

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Show Notes – May 25th, 2015

Due to memorial day laziness todays show notes are pretty poorly explained and organized.  Today may be all TED talks if Lena can figure out how to make them play.

Yay Holidays!

How Facebook is Killing the Open Web The way we use the web is changing. The rise of social networks and apps have created closed silos where people are spending increasing amounts of time, at the expense of the open web. There are a couple of ways for you to be reading this article: you could have entered into your browser and come here directly, you could have searched for something online and followed a link to this
The First Android Apps Are Now Available for Chrome OS At Google I/O, the company announced that soon you would be able to run Android apps in Chrome OS. Today, that day has arrived. Sort of. For a couple apps anyway.The initial set of supported apps is sparse. Duolingo, Evernote, Sight Words, and Vine are all available on the Chrome Web Store and…that’s it for now. Google promises it’s working with “select developers” to bring Android app
Seven Things Your IT Department Wishes You Knew About Tech Support Working in the IT department is often a thankless job. You’re like the invisible behind-the-scenes worker who is only noticed when something breaks—and then you’re blamed for it. Here are seven misconceptions about tech support reps and the IT department you should know so you can work better with the IT guy or gal.Recently we asked you what you wish others knew about your occupation, and many in
AdultFriendFinder Hack Might Expose Your Sexual Orientation When a company or website you trust gets hacked, it can be pretty unnerving. Particularly if you trusted that company with your credit card or medical information. But what if the hackers had knowledge of your sex life instead? That could be a reality: AdultFriendFinder has suffered a massive data breach.The UK’s Channel 4 News reports that 3.9 million AdultFriendFinder users have had their inform
Get Software for Designing Rockets and Piloting Drones, Free From NASA You can get over 1,000 free programs from NASA, thanks to the second release of NASA’s online software catalog, which debuted last year. The catalogue includes every piece of software that NASA built for itself, ranging from project management and inventory programs to design software for rockets and crewed spacecraft. “This is all stuff from the past four to five years. A lot of it’s new,” Dan Lo
The Paranoid Conspiracy-Theorist’s Guide To Online Privacy & Security Last time, I showed you how to attempt to break free of the tight embrace that is Google. This time, I am going to cover a wide range of topics, and offer tips that I have picked up on my online travels and from speaking to knowledgeable colleagues and friends. Hopefully you will find something here that connects with you and use to make your time online more secure. Revoke Website Privileges On G
Stop Expecting Privacy When You Use Work Apps Your privacy is important, even if our concern for it is often misplaced. Nowhere is it more misplaced than the tech we use at work. When you use office computers, phones, or other gear, you shouldn’t expect privacy. And yet, so many still do. Here’s why it doesn’t make sense, and what you can actually do if you want to have an off the record conversation.Work Tech Is Not Your TechIt’s tempting to
How to Avoid Being “Catfished” While Online Dating Online dating can be fun and exciting, but it can also be a playground for identity thieves, hackers, and other nasty people. Here are the tell-tale signs of a catfish—or someone online who’s pretending to be someone they are not—and how best to approach the people you meet online that seem a little fishy.Do Your Research and Look for Red FlagsAs soon as someone contacts you, your best bet is to d
Spotify vs Netflix: Is There Room for Both with On-Demand Video? It appears Spotify may well be expanding into video streaming, and competing directly with the likes of Netflix and YouTube. Is this a smart move, or is Spotify punching above their weight? With over €1 billion (about $1.2 billion) in revenue, and 15m paying subscribers, one would expect Spotify to be in a pretty healthy financial position. So, naturally we’d be forgiven for believing rumors of Sp
You Can Now Stream Movies with Popcorn Time Right From Your Browser The Netflix of movie torrents, Popcorn Time, has always been an easy way to stream movies—and now you can do it right from your browser, no extra software required.The new site, Popcorn In Your Browser, is super easy to use. Head to the home page, search the movie you want to watch, and then select it. The stream will start to buffer and in a few moments the movie will start playing. That’s it.The
* is put out to pasture after retailer starts domain dispute Comic artist Jeph Jacques was so amused when the .horse top-level domain was created that he decided to make a new website: The site portrayed an unexplainably funny picture of a horse in front of a Wal-Mart store (above). Wal-Mart didn’t get the joke. In March, they sent Jacques a cease-and-desist letter telling him that the site infringed their trademark. Jacques responded, sayi
’90s web portal Lycos returns to sell its patents Long before Google and eons ahead of Bing, Lycos was the Internet’s search engine. In fact, the company was one of the first to implement spidered web indexing. And while Lycos hasn’t made many headlines lately, the company still maintains an impress…
Heads Up, Americans: Here’s How Credit Cards Are Changing in 2015 Credit cards are nothing new in the United States or elsewhere in the world (there’s even a format to the numbers!), but this year, a big change is coming to the plastic payment form that will make its transactions more secure. Curiously, the USA is behind Europe and other countries that have already adopted the new credit card standard. Before you start seeing new terminals deployed in stores and
How to Migrate From an Old NAS to a New One Overnight with rsync A NAS, or network-attached storage device, is great for storing files you can reach from any computer in the house. But when you upgrade to a new one, you’re stuck copying everything over by hand, swapping drives, and risking data loss. Here’s a much more reliable method.Not too long ago, I picked up a brand new NAS with way more space than my old one. It’s great, but as soon as I set it up I was
Safari address-spoofing bug could be used in phishing, malware attacks From the department of things that aren’t what they seem, researchers have demonstrated a new address-spoofing exploit that tricks Safari users into thinking they’re visiting one site when in fact the Apple-made browser is connected to an entirely different address. The recently published proof-of-concept exploit causes the Safari address bar to display even though the browser is

quinn norton made neat info art about prisons:
and then this (all from a twitter fight) (this part maybe needs more explaination) :


Show Notes – May 18th, 2015

Safari address-spoofing bug could be used in phishing, malware attacks From the department of things that aren’t what they seem, researchers have demonstrated a new address-spoofing exploit that tricks Safari users into thinking they’re visiting one site when in fact the Apple-made browser is connected to an entirely different address. The recently published proof-of-concept exploit causes the Safari address bar to display even though the browser is
Ulbricht’s lawyer: Silk Road was “the most responsible” drug market in history Silk Road—wasn’t that the massive, online drug bazaar? If you read the latest documents filed in the case, you might think it was a methadone clinic or “harm reduction center.” As part of an upcoming sentencing hearing, the government has laid out plans to show evidence of six drug overdose deaths it believes are directly connected to the website, which allowed users to buy pretty much
Why Today’s Landmark Court Victory Against Mass Surveillance Matters In a landmark victory for privacy, a federal appeals court ruled unanimously today that the mass phone-records program exposed two years ago by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden is illegal because it goes far beyond what Congress ever intended to permit when it passed Section 215 of the Patriot Act. The ruling in ACLU v. Clapper is enormously significant, and not only because the program in questi
F.A.O. Schwarz to Close Its Famous Doors — Design News Pin it The latest victim of rising rents, famed toy store F.A.O. Schwarz will close its doors on 5th Avenue this year. Owned by Toys “R” Us, the New York staple is looking for a new location, but it’s unlikely it will reopen before fall 2016. You have until July 15 to tap out Heart & Soul on the iconic keyboard. • F. A. O. Schwarz to Close Its Doors on Fifth Avenue | New York
Minecraft Player Named ‘MojangSucksDick’ Gets Pranked By Mojang Making a username in a fit of rage can lead to some pretty silly situations. Just ask the Minecraft player who gave themselves the username ‘MojangSucksDick.’A few years ago, Reddit user jessemoforice had trouble logging into their Minecraft account. So instead of logging into their already existing account, they made a brand new one. ‘MojangSucksDick.’ It was a username made in anger, sure, but t
Anthony Bourdain’s Opening a Food Market Inspired by Blade Runner Would you eat at a market inspired by the 1982 dystopian classic Blade Runner? Anthony Bourdain is hoping you will. He’s currently negotiating to open a market in the renovated 100,000 square foot SuperPier in New York. The floor plan is said to evoke “the set decor of Blade Runner and the vibrant back alleys of Tokyo.”“It is meant to be crowded and chaotic because that’s what hawker centers shoul
FTC Recommends Conditions For Sale of RadioShack Customer Data itwbennett writes: The FTC has weighed in on the contentious issue of the proposed sale of consumer data by RadioShack, recommending that a settlement with failed online toy retailer be adopted as a model for dealings going forward. Director of the FTC’s bureau of consumer protection Jessica L. Rich wrote in a letter to a court-appointed consumer privacy ombudsman that the agency’s co
Shutting down one of Europe’s largest video streaming sites had little impact on piracy One of the largest illegal movie streaming websites in Europe was shut down in 2011 following a massive police raid across France, Germany and Spain. At the time,’s closure was viewed as a huge victory for those in support of the anti-piracy movement.
Skype Translator Preview Is Now Available to Everyone Windows: Last year, Microsoft announced an app that would allow you to have real-time conversations with people who spoke different languages, built on Skype. While the service was only available to a small group of testers, it’s now open to everyone.The app currently supports translation between English, Spanish, Italian, and Mandarin. Simply initiate a voice or video chat with your partner and w
New to Linux? 5 Apps You Didn’t Know You Were Missing When you moved to Linux, you went straight for the obvious browsers, cloud clients, music players, email clients, and perhaps image editors, right? As a result, you’ve missed several vital, productive tools. Here’s a roundup of five umissable Linux apps that you really need to install. Synergy Synergy is a godsend if you use multiple desktops. It’s an open-source app that allows you to use a singl
AT&T to bring Hulu subscription service to its customers later this year AT&T on Wednesday said it has an agreement in place to bring Hulu’s subscription streaming service to its customers later this year. The deal builds on AT&T’s existing contract with Hulu for its free content.
Soon, All Versions of Chrome Will Block Non-Web-Store Extensions Last year, Google began blocking the installation of Chrome extensions that weren’t from the Web Store. However, it didn’t affect Chrome’s dev channels. Starting today, that changes.Google claims that, since disabling non-Web Store extensions, they observed a 75% drop in requests for support uninstalling unwanted extensions. As a result, today they will begin blocking extension sideloading in the
TunnelBear Adds Chrome Extension for Private Browsing on the Desktop Chrome: We’ve already talked about how great TunnelBear is on Android and iOS. You can use it to get around region blocks, avoid IP tracking, and maintain your privacy. Now, the discreet VPN is available to Chrome users with an extension.The service allows you up to 500MB per month of free browsing (though you can boost that to 1.5GB if you tweet about them). You can change which region you appear
That Awkward Moment When You… Complete Social Media Fail That feeling when you’ve said something stupid on Twitter and realize you’re going to get flamed. Been there? Well, be thankful that’s as bad as it gets for most people. And then there are the real screw-ups. This week has been full of social media blunders from the criminally stupid, the perpetually petrified and rude business-people in general. It’s amazing how big these people messed up. Read o
Microsoft has just announced all the different versions of Windows 10 that are coming, with Home and Microsoft has just announced all the different versions of Windows 10 that are coming, with Home and Pro being the primary consumer-focused editions. There are seven versions in all for certain niches, including Mobile, Enterprise, and Education. Read more on the Windows blog.
How to Get Birth Control Without Your Insurance Illegally Charging You Under the Affordable Care Act, you should be able to get any approved type of birth control without a co-pay. But many insurers are charging anyway—sometimes because of loopholes, and sometimes they’re just plain breaking the law. Here’s what you can do.Casey Gueren at BuzzFeed explains how to find out if your plan is either “grandfathered” or is exempt for religious reasons. If they aren’t, they
Making Sense of the ‘Internet of Things’: Connectivity doesn’t inherently make something better Trying to think about one of the hottest trends sweeping the tech industry—IOT, or the Internet of Things—has me a bit befuddled, to be honest. On the one hand, I understand the conceptual potential of a world where everything is connected, and where we’re able to glean a wealth of…
Conspire Tracks and Analyzes Your Email Habits Email can be frustratingly time consuming. You certainly don’t want to ignore your inbox, but you don’t want to spend all day reading and replying, either. To better manage your email habits, Conspire tracks your usage data, then analyzes it, and sends you weekly report cards.To start, all you need to do is sign up, which is as simple as linking your email account. You can connect multiple email a
Fleet Of 500 Eco-Friendly Food Carts Coming To NYC The vehicles dispensing dirty water dogs and charred street meat are getting an eco-friendly makeover thanks to a fleet of 500 new food carts set to debut in the coming months. This morning, the City Council announced a partnership with MOVE Systems, which will supply the new carts gratis to vendors throughout the city. [ more › ]
Senate under pressure after House votes to end NSA program – Fox News NBCNews.comSenate under pressure after House votes to end NSA programFox NewsAfter the House’s lopsided bipartisan vote to end the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of Americans’ phone records, the Senate is under considerable pressure to pass a similar measure. If it doesn’t, lawmakers risk letting the authority to collect the …The House refutes a key defense of the NSAWashington Post
Amazon Drops Gendered Toy Categories — Design News Pin it Amazon has removed gender from its taxonomy of toys and games. Though gendered landing pages still exist (and you can still search by gender, of course), removing them from the list of categories is a good first step. READ MORE »
Obama’s New Tech Advisor Proved How Easy It Is To Hack Voting Machines The White House just named Ed Felten as its newest advisor in the Office of Science and Technology Policy. Felten is a professor at Princeton, but you might remember him from a 2006 video where he shows how to hack a voting machine and potentially steal an election. (Conspiracy theorists, start your engines!)“Our study shows that a criminal who can inject malicious software into this voting machin
World Health Organization Has New Rules For Avoiding Offensive Names sciencehabit writes: Last week The World Health Organization (WHO) decided to address not only the physical toll of disease but the stigma inflicted by diseases named for people, places, and animals as well. Among the existing names that its new guidelines “for the Naming of New Human Infectious Diseases” would discourage: Ebola, swine flu, Rift valley Fever, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, a
Two more AT&T prepaid plans will offer data rollover Looks like AT&T is the latest carrier to hop onto the “data rollover” bandwagon. The company recently announced that customers subscribing to its prepaid GoPhone $45 and $60 plans will be able to apply their unused data allowance — 1.5 GB and 4 GB, …
New Law Would Let Multiracial New Yorkers Check More Than One “Race” Box On Government Forms A new law sponsored by City Councilmember Margaret Chin would allow New Yorkers to identify as more than one race—and check more than one box—on city agency documents. [ more › ]
The US Is Finally Getting Access to a Promising Cancer Drug From Cuba Tourism isn’t the only industry eager to benefit from the relaxing of the decades-long trade embargo against Cuba. Medical researchers on both of sides of the Straits of Florida now have the chance to collaborate with previously off-limits colleagues. Of particular interest to the U.S. is a Cuban lung cancer drug that took 25 years to develop.The U.S.-based Roswell Park Cancer Institute and the Cu
White House Names Ed Felten As Deputy U.S. Chief Technology Officer New submitter bird writes: Ed Felton, Director of Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy (CITP) and well-known and outspoken consumer advocate, has been appointed deputy US chief technology officer. His is a voice of reason that needs to be heard when tech policy is made. The press release says: “We are excited to announce that Dr. Ed Felten is joining the White House
Motorola Says Original Moto X to See Lollipop ‘In A Few Weeks’ Motorola’s Senior Director of Software Product Management, David Schuster, today said owners of the original Moto X should see Lollipop hit their devices in the next few weeks. Schuster said Motorola has faced challenges with its partners in getting the OS builds approved, but the company expects to start deploying in the U.S. and Latin America soon. Motorola earlier indicated the Moto X would jum
Woman Says She Got Fired for Deleting a 24/7 Tracking App Off Her Phone And now in a delightful new installment of a series I just made up right now—Why Isn’t This Illegal?—we have an employer allegedly firing a woman for not wanting to be tracked after-hours on her work phone. A California woman is suing her former employer for invasion of privacy, labor infractions, and wrongful termination after she was fired, allegedly for uninstalling a GPS-enabled app called Xor
How Spotify Can Become Profitable journovampire writes: Spotify just posted another big net loss, but it can become profitable with some specific changes according to one analyst. He suggests the following three options: Cut royalty costs to the music industry, freeze expenditure year-on-year, and what seems like the least likely option, somehow make free users pay $1 every three months. He points out: “if Spotify’s current f
Uber and other app-hailing services become legal in the Philippines Uber has finally caught a break in the Philippines. It’s no secret that the company’s dealing with a bunch of issues, from sexual

Show Notes – May 11th, 2015

Live in the studio today is Lena and her guest Miguel

Drones Could Airdrop Relief Supplies to Combat Zones in Syria Drones—like sharks and William Shatner—are often misunderstood by the public. Many associate the autonomous fliers with warfare and creepy government spies. But drones can be heroic, dropping life-saving supplies to civilians in combat zones.That’s what U.S. Air Force member/Stanford PhD student Mark Jacobsen wants to do with his crowdfunding effort, the Syria Airlift Project. While spending time

Japanese bankers get exosuits to help move stacks of cash Japan’s Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation announced Friday that it will provide Hybrid Assistive Limb (HAL) exosuits to select senior employees as part of a pilot program aimed at reducing the strain of moving currency. “There have been many cases …

NYC Produces Twice As Much Garbage As Any Other City On Earth New York City is great at a lot of things. Walking! Skyscrapers! Pizza! And according to a new study on the world’s megacities, NYC can add one more thing to its list of things it excels at: Trash!Over at Motherboard, Brian Merchant has declared New York the world’s most wasteful city. This is based on a huge research project on megacities (metropolitan areas with over 10 million people) that was

Anti-graffiti device nabs taggers by sniffing their fumes Australian taxpayers spent a whopping $34 million last year to remove graffiti from Sydney’s commuter trains. To combat this urban blight, the Australian Department of Transport is rolling out an electronic “nose” that alerts authorities in real-time…

Google executives talk Snowden and NSA backdoors during AMA Senior members of Google’s public policy team took to Reddit today to discuss the company’s stance on government surveillance reform and the pending expiration of Section 215 of the Patriot Act that allows for the bulk collection of phone records. Go…

Russia and China promise not to hack each other Russia and China have further solidified their growing friendship this week by making a cybersecurity pact. According to The Wall Street Journal, the two countries have sworn not to launch cyberattacks against each other. They’ve also agreed to an ex…

Mozilla launches Firefox OS phones in Morocco and Senegal Firefox OS might be in a distant fourth place (or further?) here domestically, but Mozilla sees plenty of value for it in emerging countries. Specifically? Senegal and Madagascar in Africa, where it recently partnered with French telecom Orange to la…

Great, Now Even Cacti Can Spy On Us In dystopian science fiction, overbearing police states have cameras and sensors perched on everything imaginable— like buildings, lamp posts, human bodies, and….fake desert flora?A local Fox affiliate in Paradise Valley, Arizona, reports that over the past few days the town has been quietly installing license plate readers in fake cacti around town. Although fake plants have been used to hide u

VR Soccer Is As Entertaining As Real Soccer Soccer—or football if you’re from anywhere else but the U.S.—is the most popular sport in the world. But what if it could be better? I mean…I’m not talking so much in the sense of fast-paced athletic play than I am grown up men making idiots of themselves with VR headsets. I’d watch that.A Norwegian television show decided to conduct a little experiment to see what soccer would be like if player

MIT Study suggests current solar power tech is good enough The standard line about solar power is that while good in theory, the technology just isn’t there to keep our lights on and our Netflix streaming. But a new study from MIT (PDF) suggests that’s not the case. According to the massive report (an epic 3…

Google adds pre-registration and alerts for Android apps Starting with Glu’s Terminator Genisys: Revolution mobile game, you can now pre-register for apps from the Play store. Now if a developer wants to drum up some interest before an app release, they can stick a placeholder page in the store where users…

MetroPCS shuts off its old phone network on June 21st You’d better move quickly if you’re holding on to an older MetroPCS cellphone. The T-Mobile-owned carrier has posted a Frequently Asked Questions warning that its outgoing CDMA network will effectively shut off on June 21st. Any legacy phones are “no…

CHIP is a $9 Raspberry Pi killer The Raspberry Pi was definitely a game changer when it hit shelves at only $35. But CHIP is hoping to make the Pi look positively pricey by comparison. The Kickstarter campaign has already blown way past its $50,000 goal. In fact, at the time of this…

Plan Your Fantasy Road Trip With This Google Maps Guide To Westeros Redditor and Etsy shop owner selvag created this incredibly detailed guide to Westeros, Google Maps-style. You’ll never take a wrong turn at Moat Cailin again! [Via]

A Web Browser On The Apple Watch Is As Bad As You’d Imagine There is a short list of things that smartwatches are good for. Browsing the internet is not one of them. Apple didn’t include a web browser on its smartwatch, and for good reason. But that didn’t stop noted iOS jailbreaker Comex from hacking one on there. Given that Watch OS is really just a version of iOS 8.2 with a different UI, most of the pieces of the puzzle for enabling a web browser were a

Flying Car Crashes During Test Flight A flying car crashed during a test flight in Slovakia on Friday. The Aeromobil car was piloted by Stefan Klein, a co-founder of the company. Klein was able to deploy a parachute for the vehicle, which is said to have helped ease the severity of the impact.Witnesses near the Nitra Janíkovce airport described seeing the flying car go into a tailspin before the parachute was deployed. Klein was taken

The Void wants to offer fully immersive virtual reality games Ken Bretschneider dreams of a virtual reality experience that will have you literally running, jumping around and chasing digital villains. That’s why this fall, he’ll start building The Void: a virtual reality gaming center with 60 x 60 foot rooms w…

Drone Vandalism Is Now A Thing By this point, drones have been co-opted into most human activities: proposals, religion, and yep, porn. As of Wednesday morning, you can also add vandalising a gigantic NYC billboard to that list. As Wired reports, well-known graffiti artist KATSU has been working on his plan to scribble on billboards for a while. The benefits are obvious: quick access to any part of a building, near-immunity fro

Some SSDs Can Lose Data After Just A Few Days In Storage Solid-state drives outclass hard drives as a storage medium in almost every way: they’re faster, less fragile, and can store more data per square inch. But according to some experts, SSDs suck at long-term storage of information, thanks to one particular problem: temperature. Under optimal conditions, consumer-grade SSDs — the ones you’d find in most laptops — retain data for two years when not po

FCC Stuffs Lobbyists’ Attempt to Stay Net Neutrality Rules The FCC has denied petitions filed by a wide range of lobbying organizations that sought to stay the FCC’s proposed net neutrality regulations. The CTIA Wireless Association, USTelecom, AT&T, Wireless Internet Service Providers Association, CenturyLink, American Cable Association, and the National Cable & Telecommunications Association all filed petitions hoping to prevent the FCC from for

Appeals Court Rules That Your Electronics Can Stay Turned On In Flight Back in 2013, the FAA saw sense, and ruled that passengers can use their electronic fondleslabs during takeoff and landing. And, shortly after, the Association of Flight Attendants sued, claiming the FAA had overstepped its bounds. An appeals court just ruled against the AFA, meaning takeoff Candy Crush is here to stay. The AFA argued that the FAA had overstepped its authority by changing policy w

‘Lego Dimensions’ will include ‘Portal’, Doctor Who and Homer Simpson If the combined might of Batman and Gandalf wasn’t enough to intrigue you, how about throwing in a Timelord (with a Scottish accent)? More details of the Skylanders-baiting Lego Dimensions game have been gleaned from a building instruction sheet for …

An Interactive Map Of Murder Rates Around The World The interactive Homicide Monitor allows you to click on a country and see its murder count in a specific recent year, and the rate the number represents per 100,000 people. For some countries, you can also see the weapon most commonly used. (No surprise, the good ol’ USA has some of the more terrifying stats.)[Via Boing Boing]

Apple’s new environmental initiative focuses on China’s forests Apple’s been vocal about trying to get its global operations running entirely on renewable energy, but the company is now looking to reduce its impact on paper, wood and similar fibers too. Outlining several environmental initiatives for China, the c…

Could a Medieval Law Help Govern the Internet? Algorithms increasingly work together to help automate our digital lives—but not every result is perfect, positive or even predicted by their creators. Now, researchers are wondering if the revival of Medieval law could help work out who pays up when things go wrong.New Scientist reports that Kate Crawford from Microsoft Research wants revive something known as the deodand. The magazine explains:I

A game that explores the effects of Alzheimer’s Disease You’re standing in a living room. It might be your living room. Something’s not quite right — for every object you recognize, there’s another you don’t. Normally, if you get this feeling while playing a video game, you’re in the middle of a horror, …

We’re one step closer to navigable 3D pictures of real places If you’ve experienced a VR representation of a real place, chances are that you’ve just been looking around a static, 360-degree panorama of a room. OTOY believes that the days of the fixed-camera 3D picture are now done thanks to light-field technol…

Self-Driving Cars Are Already Getting Into Accidents Self-driving cars have been hailed as The Next Great Solution for Not Getting Killed, and autonomous vehicles could potentially drastically reduce accidents by minimizing opportunities for human error. Someday. As of now, 8% of the self-driving cars on the road in California have been in collisions.Four out of the roughly 50 unmanned cars driving around California have been in accidents since rece

Where to Find the Best Live Streams on Meerkat and Periscope Meerkat and Periscope are two apps with a similar purpose: To let you broadcast live video over the web for anyone who wants to tune in. But what if your circle of friends aren’t live streaming enthusiasts? Here’s how you can find some streams of note on both networks.In the appsInside the apps is where most users are going to get started, and if there’s nothing happening in your existing group of

AeroMobil’s flying car prototype crashes mid-test AeroMobil may have its work cut out for it if it’s going to deliver a practical flying car within two years. Unfortunately, inventor Stefan Klein crashed a prototype in Slovakia this weekend after it entered an unrecoverable tailspin during a test fl…

A Tiny Video Game-Playing Business Card You Can Smuggle In Your Wallet A year ago Kevin Bates singlehandedly justified the antiquated tradition of swapping business cards with a thin and tiny handheld console that could even play video games. He originally created the Arduboy as the ultimate business card to show off his electronics skills to potential employers, but now anyone can finally buy one through Kevin’s recently-launched Kickstarter campaign.The internet’s

‘The X-Files’ six-episode series premieres January 24th Back in March, Fox confirmed that FBI agents Mulder and Scully would return to television, and now we know when. The network announced that The X-Files six-episode run will begin on January 24th at 10 PM ET, following the NFL’s NFC Championship Game….

So Domain Trolling Is Totally a Campaign Tactic Now The first big trend in online campaigning is emerging for the 2016 presidential race, and it’s domain trolling, or buying up the domain names of your political foes. Go to and you’ll get redirected to a webpage praising Obama. Go to and you’ll see 30,000 sad-face emoticons representing all the people she laid off as CEO of Hewlett-Packard. And go to

Google suspends Map Maker service after digital vandalism Google is suspending Map Maker, the service that allows anyone to contribute to Google Maps, following a prank submission that showed the Android mascot urinating on an Apple logo. When the mapping mischief was first discovered, most of us had a good…

AT&T Offering Rollover Data to Top GoPhone Plans AT&T today announced Rollover Data for its $45 and $60 monthly GoPhone plans. Beginning May 15, new GoPhone customers will be able to enroll in the rollover program, while existing customers can enroll on their next renewal after May 15. Data Rollover for GoPhone requires a smartphone, and requires the customer to renew their GoPhone plan on time. Data that is rolled over is only available for

Self-driving cars involved minor accidents, but don’t blame the tech Since California began issuing permits for self-driving car tests on public roads last fall, four out of nearly 50 vehicles had minor accidents. According to an Associated Press report, three of the four were Google’s Lexus SUVs outfitted with Delphi…

Hunt dinosaurs and craft tools while stranded naked on ‘ARK’ island ARK: Survival Evolved begins with a simple premise: You’re stranded on an island, naked, cold and hungry, and you must survive. Also, there are dinosaurs. And other survivors. And… dragons? (Maybe it’s not so simple after all). ARK is an open-world…

5 Original Web Series That Should Totally Be on TV Web series are just getting started. Long before successes like Orange Is the New Black and House of Cards came on the scene, high-quality Web programs struggled to claim the spotlight. But now that Netflix has legitimized the concept, people are starting to notice. Think I’m kidding? When the writers’ strike hit in 2007, Lost temporarily transitioned into Webisodes called Lost: Missing Pieces. In

A Chinese billionaire sent 6400 of his employees on a French vacation – Quartz QuartzA Chinese billionaire sent 6400 of his employees on a French vacationQuartzThe Chinese conglomerate Tiens Group treated 6,400 of the company’s employees to a four-day trip to France last week in a move that appears to be part benevolence, part publicity stunt. The massive tour group, which Reuters reported is expected to spend …Chinese Company Takes 6400 Employees On Awesome European Vacay

The Oculus Rift Is Real and You Can Have One in Spring 2016 For those of you who haven’t spent the last two years waiting for this day, this post is going to sound a little crazy. For everybody else: praise the lord, Oculus VR has finally announced a release window for the consumer Oculus Rift. According to a blog post that went up this morning, “Since the earliest days of the Oculus Kickstarter, the Rift has been shaped by gamers, backers, developers, and

A New Study From Facebook Reveals Just How Much It Filters What You See A few years ago, I gave a talk about how algorithms and social media shape what we know. I focused on the dangers of the “filter bubble” — the personalized universe of information that makes it into our feed — and argued that news-filtering algorithms narrow what we know, surrounding us in information that tends to support what we already believe. The image at the top is the main slide.In the talk

A new black market site is helping users fence stolen accounts and software licenses via Paypal While we are starting to see newer payment options surfacing like Apple Pay, Paypal is still a popular way to pay for things online. Whether its electronics on eBay, or flights and hotels on Travelocity, Paypal is there for anyone who would rather use it over a credit card. And…

Federal court rules NSA’s data collection program is illegal The US court of appeals has ruled that the NSA’s bulk phone data collection wasn’t authorized under law. The metadata surveillance program has been scrutinized ever since Edward Snowden made its existence public almost two years ago. But no ruling ha…

Someone Finally Sued the Police Over Invasive License Plate Readers License plate readers that scan plates and store

Technology And Culture 05-06-2015

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