Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Twitter Is Going To Start Tracking What Other Apps Are on Your Phone

Source: http://gizmodo.com/twitter-is-going-to-start-tracking-the-other-apps-on-yo-1663793680

Twitter Is Going To Start Tracking What Other Apps Are on Your Phone

Twitter is starting a new program called App Graph that tracks all of the other apps people have on their phones. You might be wondering why Twitter cares if you're a Candy Crush fiend or if you also use Instagram. It's because Twitter follows the ABT school of sales: Always Be Targetin'.

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Adults Who Live in Treehouses Aren't as Weird as You Might Think

Source: http://gizmodo.com/adults-who-live-in-treehouses-arent-as-weird-as-you-mig-1663663674

Adults Who Live in Treehouses Aren't as Weird as You Might Think

Before I was born, my mom lived in a treehouse in the Smoky Mountains and had a pet goat with one ear. His name was Van Goat. This was the late 70s, and even then, it was a unique lifestyle. But my how treehouse culture has evolved.

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WSJ: GoPro Is Going to Make Its Own Drones

Source: http://gizmodo.com/wsj-gopro-is-going-to-make-its-own-drones-1663738793

WSJ: GoPro Is Going to Make Its Own Drones

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that GoPro is going to start making its own consumer drones. Specifically, the action camera company is going to market "multi-rotor helicopters with high-def camera lenses late next year." Makes sense!

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Explore Top-Shelf Booze With This Liquor Tasting Pack [44% Off]

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/top-shelf-liquor-tasting-gift-2014-11

redesign_flaviar 1pack mf2Booze is a great gift idea for anyone old enough to drink. Choosing the right bottle, however, can be a drag. There are so many types and flavor profiles, the wrong choice could be the difference between a great gift and a forgettable one. Flaviar, a liquor sampler delivery service, can make things easier.

It's a great way to discover and explore fine alcohol, from craft batches to well-known brands, and it's currently available with a 44% discount.

redesign_flaviar 1pack mf1

You'll receive a hand-sealed tasting box with five different spirits, from scotch to cognac to rum. You'll also get access to the School of Spirits e-learning course to expand your knowledge. If you're giving this as a gift, keep the course for yourself so you sound smarter than you are.

It's a great idea for any aficionado or novice who wants to explore new tastes.  

Get 44% off the Top Shelf Liquor Tasting Pack ($33.99 incl. shipping)

Here's exactly what you'll get:

  • Five (5) vials of different spirits – 45ml each
  • Tasting notes and drinks description
  • Tasting pack theme description (more general, on Scotch, on Rum etc.)
  • The School of Spirits E-Learning Course
  • 7 Day Email Course
  • Learn about Fine Spirits
  • Tips & Tricks on Tasting
  • Become a Rockstar of the Bar
  • Receive a Fancy Certificate

Get 44% off the Top Shelf Liquor Tasting Pack ($33.99 incl. shipping)

SEE ALSO: Essential Items For A Grown-Up Grooming Routine

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A Chinese Tech Company Wants To Make Your Smartphone's Internet Connection 1,000 Times Faster

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/huawei-5g-network-speeds-2014-11

Android Phones

We still have a long way to go before we experience the next step after 4G LTE, but telecom companies are already hard at work developing faster, more efficient networks.

Chinese smartphone maker Huawei recently said it's working with three major carriers in South Korea to establish 5G networks.

Huawei's CTO made the announcement at the Startup Nations Summit in Seoul, Korea, according to CNET, saying that the company will be working closely with SK Telecom, KT, and LG Uplus. 

SK Telecom is one of the biggest carriers in South Korea, and it commands about half of the wireless carrier market share in the country.

The fact that Huawei is working on 5G technology isn't necessarily new, but this is the first time we're hearing about these carrier partnerships.

There's no set standard for how much faster 5G will be in comparison to 4G LTE, but Huawei's white paper on the subject says the improvements will be "1,000 fold."

Don't expect to see such advancements anytime soon, however. Experts estimate we'll see early signs of 5G in 2020, but widespread deployment isn't likely until 2025. Other big tech companies such as Samsung and Ericsson are also in the process of developing and testing 5G networks. 

When 5G does eventually roll out, it'll be about much more than speed. 5G will be designed to support many different types of devices other than phones, such as wearable devices and smart home products.

SEE ALSO: If You Think 5G Is All About Faster Network Speeds, You're Wrong

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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Amazon now connects you with local contractors

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2014/11/25/amazon-services/

Looks as if the list of things that Amazon doesn't sell just got that little bit shorter after the company started connecting people with local contractors. Customers in a handful of trial cities, including NYC and Seattle, can now use an Angie's List-style site to get tradespeople to visit your home for services. For instance, search for a TV wall bracket on the site and you'll be able to find a professional TV mounter to come and drill the holes so you don't have to. Right now, it's only a limited trial, but imagine if Amazon eventually bundled this sort of thing into Prime? We'd never have to shell out big bucks for an emergency plumber ever again.

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Via: Re/code

Source: Amazon

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drag2share: How English describes color vs how Chinese describes color

source: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/vip/~3/1H6gKao0KYc/+caseychan

How English describes color vs how Chinese describes color

Here's a fascinating visualization created by Muyueh Lee that shows the differences between how the English language and Chinese language each describe colors. On the left, you can see the number of English names for color hues (there's a lot!) and on the right, the number of Chinese names (there's a little!).

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So.

Source: http://gizmodo.com/so-many-passwords-with-so-many-stipulations-tru-1663088107

So. Many. Passwords. With. So. Many. Stipulations. [Truth Facts]

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Visualizing the Notes Played in Songs on a Piano-Turned-Histogram

Source: http://gizmodo.com/visualizing-the-notes-played-in-songs-on-a-piano-turned-1663085004

Visualizing the Notes Played in Songs on a Piano-Turned-Histogram

Ever wondered how many times a certain note gets played during the course of a song? Well this tool developed by Joey Cloud lets you visualize the number of times each note is played on a histogram—that happens to look exactly like the piano keyboard it represents.

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drag2share: Plug-in turns your browsing history into a searchable database

source: http://www.engadget.com/2014/11/25/fetching-plug-in-browser-history/?utm_source=Feed_Classic_Full&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Engadget&?ncid=rss_full

Some apps make it easy to delete your browsing history for the sake of privacy and security. This one called Fetching, however, does the opposite: it saves a comprehensive copy of your history for years to come. What for? Well, searching random words on Google doesn't always return the results you want, and a browser's native history could be a useless jungle of websites. You can use this app to search only among websites you've browsed in the past and find that particularly interesting feature you've read or that great deal you've come across. Fetching, created by a developer named Peter Brown who works on it in his spare time alone, lives in the computer as a browser plug-in.

The service has two versions to choose from. If you use Mac, you'll have the option to save data in your own hard drive or SSD, so nobody else can access it (besides nosy family members, that is). But if you use Windows or any other platform, you'll have to make do with the cloud version for now. Both raise valid security concerns, though, as hackers could infiltrate Fetching's servers and individual Mac computers. If they get in, they'll have years' worth of browsing history all saved and ready for the taking. That said, you can always disable the plug-in and delete the data you've stored anytime you want. Plus, Fetching doesn't save anything opened in an incognito or private tab, so you may want to start using the feature if you decide to install the app.

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Monday, November 24, 2014

The Bizarre Story Behind Last Night's Craigslist Hack

Source: http://gizmodo.com/the-bizarre-story-behind-last-nights-massive-craigslist-1662742826

The Bizarre Story Behind Last Night's Craigslist Hack

If you tried to visit Craigslist late Sunday night, you probably had a very weird experience. Instead of arriving at that sultry sea of classifieds, you were probably sent to DigitalGangster.com. Then, you were likely redirected to YouTube, where a very strange animated rap video filled your ears with lyrics about freedom, privacy, and net neutrality.

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A new project promises to turn your iPhone into a VR headset

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2014/11/24/pinc-vr-iphone-indiegogo/

Thanks to accessories like Google Cardboard and Samsung's Gear VR, using a smartphone to enter a virtual reality world has become relatively simple. However, those options have the limitation of being available to use only with Android, leaving iOS users wondering what it would be like to access something similar on their device. Here's where a new Indiegogo campaign comes in. Pinć VR is a novel peripheral which, along with a companion application, can morph your iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus into a virtual reality headset (similar to what Gear VR does with the Galaxy Note 4).

But Pinć VR does more than that, since it comes with two digital finger rings that let you perform multi-touch gestures and control elements around you. Cordon, the firm behind the project, says the idea with Pinć was to build it on "the concept of spatial computing," as it looks to make it possible (and easy) for iOS users to experience immersive VR. The Indiegogo page just went live yesterday, so there's still plenty of time for you to pitch in -- a $99 contribution is enough to, if all goes according to plan, get your very own in due time.

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Source: Indiegogo (Pinć VR)

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How a Typo May Have Turned a Drum of Radioactive Waste Into a Bomb

Source: http://gizmodo.com/how-a-simple-typo-may-have-turned-a-drum-of-radioactive-1662683094

How a Typo May Have Turned a Drum of Radioactive Waste Into a Bomb

In February, a drum of radioactive waste exploded at U.S.'s only underground nuclear waste repository. The Santa Fe New Mexican has released a bombshell report on the comedy of errors, which seems to have all started with a typo specifying the wrong type of kitty litter. Yup.

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This Cheap Little Circuit Could Double Data Speed on Your Next Phone

Source: http://gizmodo.com/this-cheap-little-circuit-could-make-your-next-phone-tw-1662678579

This Cheap Little Circuit Could Double Data Speed on Your Next Phone

Wireless technology is already amazing. It's any data you could ever want through the air. But some exciting innovations are hiding on the horizon. This cheap little circuit that allows a wireless antenna to send and receive data at the same time is one of them. It stands to double the rate at which your phone transfers data.

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drag2share: Samsung's 4K-ready NX1 camera finally comes to the US

source: http://www.engadget.com/2014/11/24/samsung-nx1-available-us/?utm_source=Feed_Classic_Full&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Engadget&?ncid=rss_full

The NX1, Samsung's first camera capable of shooting 4K video, was originally expected to be released last month here in the States. And even though this was clearly not the case, the company has been doing everything it can to hype up its new compact system in the meantime, including a partnership with Joseph Gordon-Levitt to create a film, titled In a City, that's going to be shot entirely with the NX1. On paper, the camera seems like great option, featuring a 28.2-megapixel, APS-C CMOS sensor, 15fps of continuos shooting, a 3-inch Super AMOLED articulating screen, an EVF with a 1,366 x 758 resolution, NFC and WiFi.

There's also a new auto-focusing system inside, which Samsung claims can detect up to 205 different phase points and cover roughly 90 percent of the whole frame. If you're interested, be ready to break the bank: Samsung is pricing the NX1 at $1,500 body-only, or $2,800 with a 16-50mm lens, a grip, extra battery and an external charger.

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T-Mobile's data-free streaming adds Google Play Music and more

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2014/11/24/t-mobile-music-freedom-google-play-music/

Google Play Music was absent from T-Mobile's Music Freedom options... until now. After a public vote to see who should be next, Mountain View's streaming library will no longer gobble your data on the UnCarrier's network. Google's music service is among 14 others, including Xbox Music and SoundCloud, that won't count against that monthly allowance when you're in need of some tunes on-the-go. Of course, Spotify, Rdio, Pandora and ten others were already given the free pass, so with the recent additions, that total now tallies 27 in all. The full list of today's additions awaits on the other side of the break.

The full list of today's additions to T-Mobile's Music Freedom:

  • Google Play Music
  • Xbox Music
  • SoundCloud
  • RadioTunes
  • Digitally Imported
  • Fit Radio
  • Fresca Radio
  • JAZZRADIO
  • Live365
  • Mad Genius Radio
  • radioPup
  • radio.com
  • ROCKRADIO
  • Saavn

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Source: T-Mobile

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Watchmakers are cracking down on bootleg smartwatch faces

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2014/11/24/smartwatch-face-piracy/

A mock Patek Philippe watch face on an LG G Watch R

Did you get a G Watch R or Moto 360 and promptly give it a watch face that simulates a mechanical timepiece? Don't count on doing that again. TorrentFreak understands that watchmakers like Omega, Panerai, Swatch and Tissot are sending takedown requests to sites hosting smartwatch faces that allegedly violate "trademark, copyright and design rights." The companies aren't speaking on the record, but this is more about legal obligation than attempting to protect sales -- if they don't crack down on bootleg digital faces, they'll have a harder time taking action against real-world counterfeits.

FaceRepo and other affected watch face hosts are usually quick to honor these requests, and they're implementing filters to prevent troublesome uploads. With that said, some of these watch faces are still relatively easy to find. I quickly spotted a Moto 360 replica of Patek Philippe's Grandmaster Chime, an ultra-rare watch whose real version costs a whopping $2.6 million. It's doubtful that watch brands will sue as long as their takedowns succeed; many of these faces are available for free, and it's doubtful that there are any lost sales when many of these analog watches are far more expensive than smartwatches. Still, it's clear that watch face piracy is going be a problem for a long time to come.

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Source: TorrentFreak

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A Startup Figured Out How To Print Light Just Like Paper รข And It Looks Like Magic

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/lightpaper-technology-prints-light-like-paper-2014-11

Lightpaper1

Imagine if light could be emitted by flat, razor-thin surfaces like paper, instead of round, circular bulbs.

That's exactly the type of technology Idaho-based startup Rohinni is working on, and it looks like it has the potential to change how all types of gadgets are made — from smartphones to cars, wearable devices, and of course, the traditional lamp.

Rohinni calls this technology LightPaper, and it can be printed and applied to near any surface, as CMO Nick Smoot recently told Fast Company's Tyler Hayes. To create LightPaper, Rohinni combines ink and small LED lights and prints them out in one single conductive layer, Smoot told Fast Company. 

Rohinni's LightPaper is much thinner than current lighting technology such as OLED, which is used to power most super-slim TVs like the ones made by Samsung and LG. But based on what Hayes told Fast Company and the demos shown on Rohinni's website, it seems like the company is more interested in using LightPaper as a new means of backlighting for gadgets and everyday objects. 

One of the most obvious use cases, according to Rohinni's website, is illuminating logos on products. Here's how it could look on a smartphone.

Lightpaper3

And a car:

Lightpaper4

With technology as thin as LightPaper, you'd ideally be able to install lighting directly into your bedroom wall as shown below.

Lightpaper2

We'll probably start seeing LightPaper implemented in products sometime in 2015,! accordi ng to Fast Company, but it's unclear exactly where we'll see it. Check out the video from Rohinni below.

SEE ALSO: This 'Wonder Material' Could Make Your Next Phone Super Thin With Internet That's 100x Faster

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4K, gaming and a tale of two monitors

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2014/11/23/irl-4k-gaming-and-a-tale-of-two-monitors/

4K, gaming, and a tale of two monitors

Unlike most gadgets and peripherals, our computer monitors tend to stay with us for a good chunk of time. My current 23-incher has been with me since the days of my Palm Centro. So when it comes to shopping for a new display, it certainly pays to know what you want out of it. Are you heavily into gaming and need a monitor with crazy-high refresh rates? Would you rather have as big a screen as possible for all those windows you have open every day? I recently spent a month with two of AOC's latest models: a 24-incher with NVIDIA G-Sync support for serious gaming, and a 4K 28-inch display that puts a premium on pixels. Could either one convince me to let go of my trusty Viewsonic?

G2460PG

AOC monitor

It's hard to get worked up about monitor design, but AOC puts some solid effort into making the 24-inch G2460PG stand out. The bright green line running along the bottom bezel, and the matching cord organizer around the monitor's neck, should tell you this is meant for rec rooms and man caves more so than conference rooms and office cubicles.

Of course, the signature feature of this 24-inch, 1080p monitor is its support for NVIDIA's G-Sync tech. In short, G-Sync's meant to smooth out performance in games by offering V-sync's signature benefit (protection against screen tearing) while minimizing its main side effect (stuttering frame rates). It basically does this by getting the video card and monitor to better coordinate between when the GPU is done drawing a frame and when the display is ready to show it.

So, does it work? Provided you have a GPU that supports G-Sync, the answer is: Yeah, pretty much. You might not notice it working in every game, but there were certainly moments where having it enabled provided a smoother, more enjoyable experience.

In Tomb Raider, frame rates with my low-end GeForce GTX 750 Ti can fluctuate between buttery smooth and a jittery mess depending on what's on the screen at the time. Enabling G-Sync made a fairly dramatic difference, especially when making sudden turns in large caverns. Simply spinning in a circle (which certainly took Lara Croft's enemies by surprise) was enough to show a difference: With G-Sync off, the dips in frame rate were more noticeable, like a carousel with a sputtering engine. When flipped on, though, the spin became more fluid and even. It can't work miracles though. Crysis 3 still taxes my lowly card on the higher settings, and G-Sync can't increase your maximum FPS; it merely evens out what your card can currently do.

As for the monitor itself, you've got onboard USB 2.0/3.0 ports and a DisplayPort (required if you're using G-Sync). We're looking at a TN (Twisted Nematic) panel with a 1ms response time and a refresh rate that goes up to 144Hz. While those speedy specs make for a compelling gaming display, the G2460PG is less adept at other tasks, where color accuracy and viewing angles are more important. I couldn't use this as the main screen on my photography workstation, nor would I take my Saturn Aura drag racing -- that's not what either product is designed for.

At around $450, the G2460PG is priced similarly to the handful of other G-Sync monitors currently on the market. When it comes to everyday work, it doesn't have the color accuracy I need from a daily driver. But if I had the room -- and the budget -- for a dedicated gaming machine alongside my main desktop, I could see adding this to my office.

U2868PQU

AOC monitor

If you're more interested in screen real estate than frame rates, AOC also offers the 28-inch 4K U2868PQU (about $550). While it clearly shares the same basic design roots as its gaming-focused sibling, its evident this is intended for "serious" work. No bright green racing stripe here; just tons of ports, some bottom-facing speakers and a lot of pixels. At 3,840 x 2,160, simply firing the monitor up made one thing abundantly clear: I needed to change my desktop wallpaper. What once was clear and sharp at 1080p was suddenly blurred and muddy, like a YouTube video that's not quite done buffering.

Indeed, the U2868PQU is incredibly sharp and its far more understated design lets the pixels do the talking. Around back, you can connect via VGA, DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort -- and, thankfully, you get those cables in the box as well. The speakers are nice to have, but they're not going to power your next get-together. And like its stablemate, the 28-incher rotates into portrait mode, though you'll need to tilt the screen back slightly to make room when you turn it, lest you bang the corner of the display into your desk. Of note: You haven't used HipChat until you've run it full-screen on a 28-inch, 4K display in portrait mode.

In daily use, I acclimated to the new resolution quickly. The screen's size and resolution made my day-to-day work feel more efficient. It was easy to bounce among open windows (Chrome, Word, File Explorer, Lightroom, etc.). And I certainly missed that luxury once I sent back the loaner unit and returned to my "lowly" 23-inch 1080p display.

Finding video content fit for a 4K display was a bit tricky, though YouTube's 2160p option certainly came in handy. Some of the 4K videos on GoPro's channel elicited their fair share of "oohs" and "ahhs" from houseguests.

Wrap-up

Of the two, the 4K U2868PQU came closer to what I would need out of an everyday monitor, though it's certainly not perfect. On the downside, AOC managed to hit such a low price point for a 28-inch 4K monitor in part by going with a cheaper TN panel, rather than IPS. As such, viewing angles and color accuracy took a hit, and editing photos got a bit frustrating. Such drawbacks are easier to forgive on a gaming-centric display like the G2460PG, but less so on a more "professional" monitor. What should have been subtle color gradations in fabric came out as splotchy, watercolor-like smears. In short, if you want a large monitor with 4K resolution and color accuracy suitable for photo editing, you're going to have to spend a bit more. Dell, for instance, has a slightly smaller, IPS-based 27-incher with 4K resolution at $700.

In the end, while neither monitor could quite convince me to part ways with my 23-inch Viewsonic, they both fulfill their stated missions admirably. Gamers should be pleased with the G2460PG's fast performance, especially if they have the other hardware G-Sync requires. Those wanting for lots of space and pixels at a reasonable price should give the U2868PQU a look. As with any display, though, you'd be well-served to see one in person first -- after all, you're going to be staring at it for years to come.

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Goldman Sachs Has Invested In A Company That Could Replace Analysts With Algorithms

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/goldman-sachs-investment-in-kensho-2014-11

Robot

Goldman Sachs has just led a $15 million funding round for Kensho, a financial data service that should have analysts quaking in their boots. The company is seeking to replace equity analysts with software.

Google Ventures, Accel Partners, and CNBC are also some of Kensho's big investors, according to the Financial Times

Here's what Kensho is trying to do, in its own words:

Kensho harnesses massively-parallel statistical computing, user-friendly visual interfaces and breakthroughs in unstructured data engineering to create the next-generation analytics platform for investment professionals.

Addressing the most significant challenges surrounding investment analysis on Wall Street today — achieving speed, scale, and automation of previously human-intensive knowledge work — Kensho's intelligent computer systems are capable of answering complex financial questions posed in plain English, and in real-time. 

If Kensho's claims are accurate, it should send a shiver down the spine of every financial analyst and researcher. Previously, the huge and growing amount of data available hasn't harmed analysts — the numbers are often useless without some interpretation. But if that data can be interpreted automatically, it's bad news for researchers and analysts. They might not be needed anymore if a machine can do the interpreting faster and better.

This process isn't just something that's hitting analysts. White-collar jobs could be replaced by algorithms and robots all over the place. Computers and robotic automation have replaced a huge proportion of jobs in manufacturing and agriculture in the past hundred years, but the trend isn't likely to spare service-sector desk-based workers.

Platforms like Narrative Science ! have already started to do this with journalism, with firms' financial statements quickly turned into news articles by the software. The stories are often indistinguishable from regular human-written news. A combination of firms like Kensho and Narrative Science mean you could soon be reading an article written by a robot journalist, based on research done by a robot analyst. 

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