Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Mashable: Latest 29 News Updates - including “Facebook Users Have One Week to Vote on Policy Changes, Voting Rights”

Mashable: Latest 29 News Updates - including “Facebook Users Have One Week to Vote on Policy Changes, Voting Rights”

Facebook Users Have One Week to Vote on Policy Changes, Voting Rights

Posted: 05 Dec 2012 04:02 AM PST

With the U.S. election behind us, members of a more populous -- albeit virtual -- nation are hitting the polls. Facebook users have five more days to cast their ballot in the "Facebook Site Governance Vote."

The social-network giant proposed changes to its Statement of Rights and Responsibilities (SSR) and Data Use Policy on Nov. 21. Now, Facebook is asking its 1 billion members to decide whether they would prefer the changes or keep the status quo.

Users can vote on whether or not they want the following updates to take place:

Facebook will get rid of user voting on its governance changes; instead, the company will allow members to provide feedback by submitting questions to…
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More About: Facebook, Statement of Rights and Responsibilities, data usage, internet governance, vote

Nokia Announces Budget-Friendly Lumia 620

Posted: 05 Dec 2012 03:23 AM PST

Nokia has launched a new Windows Phone 8 smartphone, the Lumia 620.

The device, which has been announced at LeWeb 2012 in Paris, sports a 3.8-inch, 800x400 pixel screen, a 1 GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 Plus CPU, and a 5-megapixel camera. It has 512MB of RAM and 8GB of storage memory, further expandable to 64GB via microSD memory cards.

On the connectivity front, you get Wi-Fi, 3G, Bluetooth 3.0 and NFC.

The price reflects the device's middling specs -- it will be available for $249. It's the first entry-level WP8 device from Nokia; the first two are the much more powerful Lumia 920 and the mid-range Lumia 820.

The Lumia 620 will first become available in Asia in January 2013,…
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More About: Lumia 620, Nokia

Microsoft Opens the Beta Version of Socl to Everyone

Posted: 05 Dec 2012 01:50 AM PST

After a long period of closed beta testing, Microsoft made the beta version of its social network, Socl, available to everyone on Tuesday.

Socl initially launched this May. It's a search-meets-social networking website that looks more like Pinterest than Facebook, and has until now been open only to invited Microsoft employees and college students.

Now, everyone with a Microsoft or Facebook account can access it. The sign-up process is effortless -- users simply connect their account with Socl. They can then start sharing content (e.g. photos, videos, links), and comment on other members' posts.

Socl's forever-scrolling front page, which shows posts from all users, can feel a bit…
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More About: Socl, microsoft, social network

8 Festive YouTube Videos for Your Hanukkah Celebration

Posted: 05 Dec 2012 01:07 AM PST

1. PS22 Chorus - "I Have a Little Dreidel"

During a 2006 holiday concert, PS22 busted out this heart warming version of "The Dreidel Song." If these grade schoolers seem like confident performers, it's because the PS22 Chorus, from Staten Island, NY, has performed at the White House, the Academy Awards and the Thanksgiving Day Parade. The chorus' YouTube channel is closing in on 50 million views.

Click here to view this gallery.

If you'd rather dance the hora than jingle bells this holiday season, then odds are those carolers at your front door won't do the trick. You need a holiday soundtrack you can call your own.

More About: Music, Video, YouTube, features, hanukkah, holidays 2012, humor

Can E-Books and Libraries Coexist?

Posted: 05 Dec 2012 12:29 AM PST

Print -- literature, journalism, you name it -- has experienced an extended obituary over the last decade, alongside the rise of digital media.

But a recent Pew study found that even as sales of e-readers like Nook and Kindle grow swiftly, young people still frequent libraries more than you might think, and print books remain popular. Even the most plugged-in lit fans are not ready to abandon print as a dead medium. In fact, e-book readers consume more books annually, no matter the format.

SEE ALSO: The 5 Best-Selling Kindle Books of All Time

To learn more, including who reads fastest -- print or e-book readers -- check out the infographic below, courtesy of

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More About: Kindle, e-books, features, infographics, nook

Facebook Now Lets Users Create Repeat Events From the Past

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 11:52 PM PST

Facebook built a new feature that lets users create a repeat event, company engineer Bob Baldwin announced Monday.

Members of the social network can now go to any past event that they hosted or attended, and replicate a new, similar event.

"It'll copy the details into a new event (which you can preview and edit before posting) and invite your friends from the past event," Baldwin wrote on his Facebook Timeline.

Rather than having to start all over again, the feature makes it easier for users to fill in an event's recurrent details -- useful for monthly trivia nights or weekly study groups, for example.

Users can't use the feature for events created by Facebook pages they don'…
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More About: Facebook

5 Ways to Watch TV and Movies on Your iPad

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 11:00 PM PST

The iPad can perform many wonderful feats. One of our favorites — its ability to stream television shows, movies and even some live broadcasting on a high-res screen. And we don't even have to tote around a heavy laptop.

ABC was the first major network to allow iPad users to stream full episodes. Ever since, many other networks have jumped on the mobile bandwagon. For the most part, these apps are free of charge. Most importantly, they're filled with full episodes of the shows you missed or want to watch again.

Sorted by category, here are the best entertainment programming apps to download for your tablet.


If you want to search for a show by channel, chances are th…
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More About: Entertainment, Film, TV, contributor, features, ipad, tablets

Watch What Happens When Guys and Girls Reverse Roles at the Bar

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 10:29 PM PST

With music pumping and drinks flowing, the bar scene is full of men on the prowl for women -- or so the stereotype goes.

One YouTube video reverses these clichéd gender roles, by imagining what it would be like if "guys and girls swapped roles at the bar." The result is a hilarious, if not entirely accurate, portrayal of the courtship dance between men and women.

Since going online Tuesday, the video has gone viral, collecting more than 2,000 views.

Do you think the video is accurate or off-base? Tell us in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Flickr, mattk1979

More About: viral videos

This ‘Transformer’ Robot Can Shape Shift Into Almost Anything

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 09:58 PM PST

MIT engineers have created a robot device that can transform into almost any shape its programmed to.

More About: Newsy, mit, robotics, videos

Did This Amazing Video Just Reinvent the Timelapse Genre?

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 09:32 PM PST

The cityscape timelapse video is a longtime YouTube favorite. But this video, shot in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, may just take the genre to a whole new level.

More About: Watercooler, time-lapse

Amazon Offers Kindle Owners All-You-Can-Eat Kids’ Content

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 09:00 PM PST

For its latest Kindle Fire tablets, Amazon included a new parental controls called FreeTime, a walled-off section of the tablet where parents can "whitelist" any content on the device as kid-friendly. That feature is getting a big upgrade, offering a wealth of pre-curated content -- for a monthly fee.

Amazon has inked deals with major providers of children's media -- including Disney, HIT Entertainment (Thomas the Tank Engine), Nickelodeon, Marvel and DC Comics -- to create FreeTime Unlimited, which makes "multiple thousands" of books, videos, games and apps available by subscription. Once you subscribe, the content shows up in FreeTime, and kids can download titles one by one just by tap…
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More About: FreeTime, Kindle, amazon, kindle fire hd, parental controls

USC Email Gaffe Rubs Salt in Wounds of Failed Football Season

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 07:58 PM PST

USC sent students an email for a football championship game it didn't make -- just one more blunder in a lost season for the Men of Troy.

More About: Sports, college sports

If History’s Greatest Artists Used Microsoft Paint…

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 07:32 PM PST

Queen Maria Isabel de Braganza With Her iPhone, After Bernardo López y Piquer

Click here to view this gallery.

What happens when you use Microsoft Paint to mash together famous works of art with iPads, laptops and fried chicken? Magic of course.

More About: Watercooler, art, flickr, illustration

Researchers in Switzerland Build Sea Turtle Drone

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 07:02 PM PST

Nature-inspired drones are being developed all around the world. Now, researchers from Switzerland have built a robot inspired by sea turtles.

The sea turtle drone is called Naro-Tartaruga. (Tartaruga is "turtle" in Italian and Portuguese.) It's being developed and tested by researchers at ETH Zurich University with the goal of eventually developing a robot that can swim underwater autonomously. The researchers are also interested in studying fin propulsion and the energy consumption of fin-propelled systems.

SEE ALSO: This Robot Runs on Sewage Waste

The Naro-Tartaruga is the second nature-like drone that the researchers developed -- the firs…
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More About: Drones, popular science, robots

Watch a Dinosaur Scare Passersby in This ‘Jurassic Prank’

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 06:34 PM PST

What happens when you unleash a 10-foot-high animatronic dinosaur costume onto the unsuspecting public?

This dino popped out of dark alleys, out of the back of the truck, and even tried a "ding-dong-ditch," all while a camera crew watched and chuckled at the responses. Some people were terrified, most screamed out expletives, and a few were unfazed enough to give the costume a friendly pat.

The video was created by Roman Atwood, who posts many other prank videos, including one of a fake prison break.

More About: pranks

Internet Petitions White House to Build a Death Star

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 05:56 PM PST

It's about time the people of the United States finally rise up in support of national security -- a petition has surfaced on the White House "We The People" platform encouraging the government to "secure resources and funding and begin construction of a Death Star by 2016."

The Death Star was the weapon of choice in Star Wars for Darth Vader and the Empire in a galaxy far, far away. But if the U.S. is going to beef up its defense, why not with a superlaser that can destroy planets with a single beam?

We The People was created by the White House administration as a forum that promises official responses to petitions with at least 25,000 signatures. The Death Star petition currently ha…
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More About: Star Wars, death star superlaser, the white house

Researchers Create World’s Largest Model of Functioning Brain

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 05:38 PM PST

Researchers from the University of Waterloo in Canada have built the world's largest model of a functioning brain, consisting of 2.5 million simulated neurons.

Called "Spaun" or "Semantic Pointer Architecture Unified Network," the model gives scientists insight into "how the complex activity of the brain gives rise to the complex behavior exhibited by animals, including humans," according to a release.

Much like a human brain, Spaun uses the network of neurons to process visual images, which then controls an arm that draws its answers to different tasks.

"This is the first model that begins to get at how our brains can perform a wide variety of tasks in a flexible ma…
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More About: neuroscience

In-Store Shopping Will Only Get Better With Apps

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 05:18 PM PST

Finding a deal is a cinch this holiday season -- if you own a smartphone. Now, more than ever before, the majority of people who own a mobile device have a smartphone, from which they can shop and find deals.

At the same time that shoppers are nabbing deals online, they're also shopping in-store and comparing prices. Brick-and-mortar stores aren't going anywhere. Shoppers are using their smartphones to make in-store experiences even better.

Vicki Cantrell, executive director of, tells Mashable that for consumers, shopping in-store or in-app is not an either/or choice.

What consumers really want is a particular product, price and experience -- they don't care which channe…
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More About: Mobile, Nielsen, smartphone

Tim Tebow Calls Hospitalized Teen After Viral Twitter Campaign

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 05:00 PM PST

Gee golly gosh, that Tim Tebow sure is one heck of a good guy, huh?

More About: Sports, Tebowing, nfl

One Minute of Life-Changing Advice From Steve Jobs

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 04:41 PM PST

Innovator, genius, imitator, businessman, designer, turtleneck lover. Steve Jobs tended to generate opinions from across the spectrum, but being inspirational reamins a steadfast quality in the Apple founder.

Jobs shares his vision of life in this video, unearthed by Interactive. It's brief but incredible, simple yet profound -- stop living like others, realize you can make a difference, and then do it.

Simply, think different.

SEE ALSO: Apple Remembers Steve Jobs With Emotional Video

What are other favorite quotes or sayings from Steve Jobs that you find inspirational? Share in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Flickr, Marthin Sühl.

More About: apple, steve jobs, viral videos

7 Ways to Enjoy the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show Online

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 04:24 PM PST

1. See Photos of the Models and Outfits Now

The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show airs Dec. 4, but the lingerie extravaganza was taped in early November, which means photos of the Angels and their new looks are already available.

The fashion show's themes are Circus (brace yourself for acrobats and sword-swallowers), Dangerous Liaisons, Calendar Girls, PINK Is Us, Silver Screen Angels and Angels in Bloom.

You can also access the photo gallery of celebrity attendees.

Click here to view this gallery.

Spread your digital wings before, during and after the televised "Victoria's Secret Fashion Show" with our tips on how to enhance your online experience.

More About: Entertainment, TV, Victoria's Secret, social tv

Dyson’s Radical Plan to Combine a Sink With a Hand Dryer

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 04:06 PM PST

Washing your hands is a broken process, according to Dyson. First you use a sink to pour water over your hands, then walk over to a towel dispenser or air dryer to dry them off. What madness is this?

Okay, it's not misery and bedlam, but there may be room for improvement, and Dyson has an idea on that score: Why not combine an air dryer with a sink, so you don't even have to move to (or worse, wait for) a separate unit to dry your hands?

That's the device Dyson envisions in this patent application, spotted by PhysOrg, for a "dual-purpose fixture for a sink or wash basin, incorporating both a water tap and a hand dryer." It's actually not a bad idea, and not just for convenience. On the…
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More About: dyson, green tech

14 Holiday Movies You Can Watch Online

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 03:48 PM PST

1. Elf (2003)

Where to Watch: Amazon Instant | Google Play/YouTube | iTunes

What's It About?: Buddy, a giant-sized elf, leaves the North Pole to discover himself in New York City.

Memorable Quote: "You sit on a throne of lies ... You smell like beef and cheese, you don't smell like Santa."

Screenshot via Warner Bros.

Click here to view this gallery.

Like a well-crafted string of popcorn on your Christmas tree, this carefully strung-together list of holiday movies is ready for your viewing pleasure.

More About: Entertainment, Film, features, holidays 2012

Internet Feline Luminary Talks Big Data and Facebook Stock

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 03:33 PM PST

Mashable snagged an interview with the foremost expurrt on the web's buzziest topics. Our very special guest discussed hot button issues like Facebook's stock woes and big data wizard Nate Silver.

The friendly exchange did get unexpectedly heated when the topic of Mindy Kaling's popularity around the litter box came up. How did our interviewee handle this intrepid reporter's prodding questions? Did a cat fight break out when the inquires turned to pop culture?

Watch to find out.

BONUS: Grumpy Cat Holidays

More About: Video, Watercooler, humor, memes

NASA Will Launch New Mars Rover in 2020

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 03:23 PM PST

On the heels of the Curiosity rover's success, NASA announced today that it will launch another rover to Mars in 2020.

More About: Curiosity, Mars, Mars rover, NASA, space

This Very Average NBA Player Had the Dunk of His Life Last Night

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 03:09 PM PST

Byron Mullens ain't no big star. His name doesn't register with the casual NBA fan. But this viral dunk from Monday night will live until the end of time.

More About: NBA, Sports

YouTube Gets Shiny New iPad, iPhone App

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 02:56 PM PST

Just hours after Google rolled out its latest Gmail app for iOS users, the company has introduced a new YouTube update for the iPhone, iPad and AirPlay.

More About: YouTube, airplay, apps, iOS, iPhone 5, ipad

Watch This Epic Trailer Mashup of 2012′s Biggest Movies

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 02:44 PM PST

Missed a few movies this past year? Don't sweat it. This mashup trailer's got all the big ones from 2012.

More About: Watercooler, mashup, videos

The 10 Most Overused LinkedIn Profile Buzzwords of 2012

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 02:35 PM PST

If you really consider yourself creative, prove it by thinking of a better word to describe yourself on LinkedIn.

More About: linkedin

Google Updates iPad App to Make Search More Local

Posted: 04 Dec 2012 02:20 PM PST

Google is treating iPad users in the U.S. to a new interactive experience when they search for restaurants, bars or other locales.

More About: Google, Mobile, apps, ipad

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