Sunday, 24 March 2013

Mashable: Latest 14 News Updates - including “Bill Gates Will Give You $100,000 to Build a Better Condom”

Mashable: Latest 14 News Updates - including “Bill Gates Will Give You $100,000 to Build a Better Condom”

Bill Gates Will Give You $100,000 to Build a Better Condom

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 02:58 PM PDT


Condoms are recognized and used by an estimated 750 million people across the world and reduce both unwanted pregnancy and the spread of sexually-transmitted infections. However, unlike most other technologies, they haven't changed much in the last half-century. So isn't it about time for something new?

Yes, says the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which is offering $100,000 of initial funding with up to $1 million of possible continued funding to whoever designs the "next generation of condoms." What might such a futuristic prophylactic look like?

"The primary drawback from the male perspective is that condoms decrease pleasure as compared to no condom," says the Foundation's description of the challenge.

iPhone 5 Case Has an iEqualizer on the Back

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 02:04 PM PDT


There's no shortage of iPhone cases, but here's one that will really make you stand out at the disco: The iEqualizer iPhone 5 case from Strapya World shows off a set of lovely blinking lights on the back that look exactly like a graphic equalizer.

First, the good news: Those attractive illuminations are powered by their own button-sized batteries that reside inside this case. That means your iPhone 5's battery won't have to pay the price for all this frivolity

Better yet, from the looks of the video above, you'll agree that it's a pretty cool effect, especially in the dark.

The bad news? Like all cases, you'll sacrifice the svelte design of the iPhone 5 for this enclosure, which also includes a plastic appendage at the top that functions as an on/off switch. In fact, the case is so thick, it will make your iPhone nearly twice its present girth.

Top Comments: Google Glass Hits the Streets

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 01:59 PM PDT


In this week's top comments, the dust began to settle from Google's decision to kill Google Reader, we went back to talking about Google Glass, Facebook and Apple were top of mind, and much more.

Mashable's Chris Taylor addressed criticisms of Google Glass in an op-ed that generated an intelligent debate among our readers. In his article, Chris explains that this kind of reaction is common when disruptive technologies emerge, as we saw with the personal computer, iPod and smartphone.

SEE ALSO:Would You Rather Have Google Glass or a Smart Watch?

Facebook tested out a new push-notification feature that reminds users to post a status update. A rep for the company explained that this was merely a test and not necessarily something Facebook would implement across the network. But the negative reaction in our comments section indicates that Facebook might be better off leaving it as a test.

6 Apps You Don't Want To Miss

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 01:41 PM PDT


It can be tough to keep up with all the new apps released every week. But you're in luck — Mashable takes care of that for you, creating a roundup each weekend of our favorite new and updated apps.

This week we found an app that will help you learn about physics, and another that will help you find the right place to eat dinner.

A new photo-editing app lets you turn your snapshots into cartoons, and Google launched an app to help you keep up with all your thoughts.

Check out the gallery above for a look at this week's highlights.

Still looking for more? Check out last week's special SXSW edition of Apps You Don't Want To Miss for more great apps worth a look

MoJoFloCam Stabilizer Keeps Your Cameraphone Video Liquid-Smooth

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 01:27 PM PDT


Have you been searching for a way to rid your smartphone video footage of the ever-dreaded "shakycam" look? Your quest might be nearing an end.

The MoJoFloCam is a prototype balance-based stabilizer accessory that works with any smartphone. The MoJoFloCam's designers say it offers a full 360 degrees of rotation and will work with a yet-to-be-designed camera jib for extra creativity. A thumb guide also helps users control the direction of a shot.

Interested? The MoJoFloCam's creators just put the device up for funding on Kickstarter, where they have already amassed nearly $1500 of their $20,000 goal. A $175 pledge gets you your very own MoJoFloCam, assuming the project reaches its funding goal before the deadline 38 days from now.

The Frustration of Writer's Block

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 12:25 PM PDT


All writers are susceptible to the debilitating condition known as writer's block. Journalist, novelist, poet or copywriter, you'll try anything — long walks, drinking (it worked for Hemingway, right?) — to wheedle inspiration out of its hiding place.

In this comic, Josh Mecouch of Formal Sweatpants illustrates one writer's process toward completing his magnum opus.

Writer's Block, Formal Sweatpants

Comic illustration by Josh Mecouch, Formal Sweatpants. Published with permission; all rights reserved.

50+ Digital Media Resources You May Have Missed

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 12:14 PM PDT


This was a relatively quiet, contemplative week at Mashable, as we took you behind the scenes of both Newark Mayor Cory Booker's Reddit AMA and the new Pope's social media team

The week was flush with Google news. Even as news junkies flocked from the condemned architecture of Google Reader, the search giant introduced a new note-taking app, refined its image search for a more modern user and floated the idea of a unified chat service — all while Glass continued to generate buzz and speculation (and a little humor).

Twitter celebrated its seventh birthday this week, and we had all the Twitter tips you'll need to stay informed as March Madness heats up. For the rest of the social media and tech news you might have missed, read on

Shredded Version of Beach Boys Hit Will Make You Laugh Until You Cry

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 11:31 AM PDT


Prepare yourselves for the silliest and most absurd video of the week: "The Beach Boys Shred 'I Get Around.'" If you recall the group's classic hit, you'll have to agree that the soundtrack to this vintage video from 1964 pales by comparison.

But that's what makes it so downright hilarious. No danger of copyright violation here, because the flimsy result bears little resemblance to the original. But you know what? It's still recognizable. Almost

Our favorite: The half-hearted guitar playing. Sounds like an electric guitar without an amp. Nice.

Every 'Star Trek' Episode Is Free on Hulu Until April

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 10:58 AM PDT


Hey, Star Trek fans: Got an itching to watch Captain Kirk go hand-to-hand with a Gorn? Or see Captain Picard's crew deal with the meddlesome, godlike Q? Or even catch the U.S.S Voyager's battles with Species 8472? Then head over to Hulu, where every single Star Trek episode is free until April.

Why the sci-fi bonanza? It's Hulu's "happy birthday" to the one, the only, The Shat:

"Today is William Shatner’s birthday, and Hulu is making every episode from every Star Trek series available to watch for free until the end of the month," reads a Hulu blog post from Friday. "Resistance is futile. Almost as futile as controlling a population of tribbles."

10 Moments of Touching Puppy Love

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 10:29 AM PDT


Happy National Puppy Day!

Man's best friend enters the world as a roly-poly bundle of clumsy cuteness. Tiny paws, fresh dog smell, soft ears — the irresistibility factor of puppies is impossible to deny.

To celebrate National Puppy Day, we've collected 10 photographs that capture heart-melting moments of doggie love. And don't forget to give Sparky an extra bone today

Homepage image courtesy of Flickr, sarahakabmg

The Coming Space Age

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 10:08 AM PDT


Eric C. Anderson has had a variety of tech and entrepreneurial identities, and The Atlantic's James Fallows spoke with him in his role as chairman and co-founder of Space Adventures. That company has made a business of sending customers into space.

The subject of the discussion was the future of space travel:

James Fallows: Space exploration seems to have lost its hold on the public imagination, compared with a generation ago.

Eric Anderson: I think absolutely they are right to feel a little bit disappointed. On April 12, 1961, the first human being, Yuri Gagarin, goes to space. Then, July 29, 1969: We're on the moon. If you and I were doing this interview on July 30, 1969 and you had asked me what space exploration would be like in the year 2013, I would've told you it would be far more advanced than it is now.

Looking for a Google Alerts Alternative? Try This

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 09:13 AM PDT


Google Alerts isn't working. Updates from Google's service, which pledges to notify users every time new search results appear for any keyword they might like to track, have trickled to a halt in recent months, leaving many to speculate whether Alerts is about to follow Google Reader into retirement. Google's spokesperson has remained mum on the topic thus far.

Since I joined Mashable three years ago, I've become dependent on Google Alerts to track updates for the companies I cover and mentions of stories I write. After Google Alerts stopped delivering, I began searching for other alternatives, and this week I alighted on something that has proven far superior to Google Alerts so far: a 1-year-old keyword-tracking tool called Mention.

U.S. Applies New Money Laundering Rules to Bitcoin, Defeating Its Purpose

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 08:50 AM PDT


Using Bitcoin to launder all the cash from your illegal dealings just got a little harder. The United States Treasury Department just enacted new rules to regulate Bitcoin and other virtual currencies, making it subject to the same level of scrutiny as other forms of currency. That's bad news for anyone looking to launder money using Bitcoin, but it could be good news for proponents of virtual currency for legitimate purposes.

The new rules will see Bitcoin regulated like Western Union.

The new rules will see Bitcoin regulated like Western Union. Little is expected to change for individuals trading in Bitcoins, but businesses will be required to keep more detailed records of the transactions. There will also now be a rule that any transactions over $10,000 must be reported.

The Pros and Cons of Passive Job Seekers

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 08:09 AM PDT


There's a common quandary for the first-time job seeker, whether a 16-year-old looking for summer work or a college graduate who focused on studies rather than internships. "We want someone with experience," employers say, but one must get hired to attain such experience

A similar dilemma presents itself to people who are unemployed: There's a trend towards hiring passive job seekers, defined as someone who currently has a job but would be open to taking a better one

To attract recruiters, LinkedIn boasts on its website that 30% of job listing views are from passive job seekers

NASA Expert: Friday Night's Bright Light Was A Meteor

Posted: 23 Mar 2013 07:12 AM PDT


The bright light streaking across the sky Friday night spotted by many observers along the East Coast was probably a meteor, according to a NASA scientist.

The flash was probably a "single meteor event," Bill Cooke of NASA's Meteoroid Environmental Office told the Associated Press. "The thing is probably a yard across," Cooke added. "We basically have (had) a boulder enter the atmosphere over the northeast."

Twitter and other social media blew up with reports of a meteor falling from the sky at approximately 8 p.m. Friday evening from the eastern United States and Canada — though at least one often-shared photo claiming to show the meteor was confirmed to be a fake.

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