Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Mashable: Latest 29 News Updates - including “Tiny 'Space Suit' Protects Bugs From Vacuum”

Mashable: Latest 29 News Updates - including “Tiny 'Space Suit' Protects Bugs From Vacuum”

Tiny 'Space Suit' Protects Bugs From Vacuum

Posted: 17 Apr 2013 01:03 AM PDT


Those cool pictures from electron microscopes of fleas, bedbugs and other tiny creatures have one drawback: The animals die during the process, which means scientists miss out on imaging the bugs while they’re alive — and miss out on filming important biological functions. Tiny “space suits” might be the answer.

Electron microscopes make images by beaming electrons at the subject matter. The problem is that it has to be done in a vacuum chamber, which means any living thing critter isn’t going to stay that way. Samples for a scanning electron microscope have to be specially prepared — even the water in a small creature’s body will evaporate, causing it to collapse. Read more...

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Facebook Hires Fired Apple Maps Executive

Posted: 17 Apr 2013 12:52 AM PDT


Facebook has hired the manager who led the development of Apple's widely criticized Maps app.

Richard Williamson joined the social network as its director of engineering this month, according to his LinkedIn profileBloomberg reported Wednesday that he has been at Facebook for the past few weeks

Last November, Williamson was fired by Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice-president of Internet software and services, following numerous user complaints that Maps had major bugs. When it launched last September with iOS 6, the app's problems included: omitting transit directions, providing poor navigation and displaying incomplete 3D views that distorted national monuments. Many compared Maps unfavorably to Google Maps, which was replaced by Apple's in-house mapping service, but later reinstated. Read more...

More about Facebook, Social Media, Apps Software, Mobile, and Apple Maps

Funny or Die's Steve Jobs Biopic 'iSteve' Debuts Online

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 11:49 PM PDT


iSteve, Funny or Die's biopic of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, premiered Wednesday, after the humor site delayed its release out of respect for victims of the Boston Marathon bombing

Originally scheduled for April 15, the film's release date was pushed to April 17

As Funny or Die's longest project to date, the nearly 80-minute comedy is a parody of the biopic film genreiSteve's production time, however, was short, with the script written in three days and shot in five

Justin Long, who was "the Mac" in the Mac versus PC commercials several years ago, stars as Jobs, while Lost's Jorge Garcia acts as Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak Read more...

More about Funny Or Die, Steve Jobs, Isteve, Entertainment, and Film

CRAPCHA Pranks You With Hopeless CAPTCHA Tests

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 10:30 PM PDT


We've all run into them while trawling the interwebz. Designed to deter spambots, CAPTCHAs are kinds of online tests that involve a visual-perception task such as identifying distorted text. The aim, of course, is to confound computers, while remaining easy enough for humans to solve.

In practice, however, many people find themselves scratching their heads over confusing CAPTCHAs. One website, CRAPCHA, parodies these "annoying registration fields you never get right on the first try" by providing impossible-to-do CAPTCHAs that feature nonsensical symbols.

Developed by Thomas Park, a human-computer interaction researcher, CRAPCHA serves no purpose other than to "annoy users by presenting a CAPTCHA with indecipherable text," according to his website. For those interested in driving people away, CRAPCHA can be added to your site Read more...

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Baldur's Gate: How Two Guys Brought a Classic Back From the Dead

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 09:30 PM PDT


Baldur's Gate was a breakout hit in the late '90s. It was one of the most immersive PC role-playing games of its time, with an engrossing story and thousands of lines of dialogue. It also put BioWare — a studio founded by two medical doctors and powered by more than a 70 untested devs — on the map.

Fourteen years later, before the franchise popped up on services like Steam or Good Old Games, playing the title on a modern PC was nearly impossible — or at least required a lot of work.

For Trent Oster and Cameron Tofer, bringing Baldur's Gate back from the dead would be a huge surprise for die-hard fans, and also a way to launch their own PC game distribution service, Beam Dog. The ex-BioWare developers were the perfect ones to do it, too; both had been with the company more than 25 years combined Read more...

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5 Things Kobe Bryant Can Teach Us About Social Media

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 08:38 PM PDT


NBA superstar Kobe Bryant suffered a devastating injury recently, but he's been putting on a social-media clinic since

Byrant ruptured his left achilles during a game Friday night, ending his season and throwing a serious wrench into the Lakers' playoff plans. But his injury is significant in the bigger picture, too. At 34 and with some serious mileage on his body, it could end Bryant's time with Lakers — and, though unlikely, his career

While he's been sidelined on the court, however, Bryant's been more active than ever online. Whether tweeting encouragement to teammates, joining unexpected platforms or sharing surprisingly candid thoughts, the NBA legend has proved he's now a social media all-star, as well Read more...

More about Nba, Entertainment, and Sports

Wanderu Makes It Much Easier to Book Bus Trips

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 07:59 PM PDT


The Launchpad is a series that introduces Mashable readers to compelling startups. If you would like to have your startup considered for inclusion, please see the details here.

Name: Wanderu

One-Liner Pitch: Wanderu makes it easy to book travel via buses and trains

Why It's Taking Off: It's the first time consumers are able to route and book a trip that spans multiple bus carriers in one place.

Wanderu, a mobile-friendly web app for finding bus and train routes in the U.S., won the grand prize for Innovative Web Technologies at SXSW this year, an award that's previously been garnered by the likes of Siri Read more...

More about Travel, Startups, Bus, Business, and Apps Software

Syrian Pro-Government Hackers Strike NPR Website

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 07:01 PM PDT


You can't employ good journalists without making a few enemies along the way, as National Public Radio recently learned the hard way. After putting the violent situation in Syria under the microscope, NPR found its site on the receiving end of vandalism, courtesy of the Syrian Electronic Army.

The SEA is a group of Middle Eastern hackers that acts as an attack dog for the current regime under President Bashar al-Assad. The Syrian government may back the SEA; at the very least, it offers no criticism for the group's illegal actions.

Over the course of the last year, the SEA has attacked a variety of news organizations, ranging from the BBC to Al Jazeera. The group has hijacked Twitter feeds, launched denial-of-service attacks and left its calling card at any news organization that offers criticism of al-Assad. Read more...

More about Npr, Hackers, Syria, Media, and Us World

New 'Man of Steel' Trailer Promises a Summer Hit

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 06:28 PM PDT


The latest Man of Steel trailer to hit YouTube gives us our fullest look yet at the new Superman flick, and promises a sure-fire summer blockbuster

It showcases plenty of emotional drama and tension, a narrative arc that'll suck you in, as well as jaw-dropping action and special effects. Embedded above, the new trailer will get you even more excited for Man of Steel's June 14 debut

While Superman Returns proved something of a dud in 2006, all signs indicate that this latest attempt at reviving the Superman franchise will be a hit. It's directed by Zack Snyder, who helmed Watchmen and 300, and is produced in part by The Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan. It stars Henry Cavill as Superman, along with Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner, Amy Adams and Laurence Fishburne. Read more...

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New Form of Pig Latin Brings Home the Aconbay

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 06:00 PM PDT


Idday ouyay eakspay Igpay Atinlay asway away idkay? No, that isn't a stream of typos — it's Pig Latin for, "Did you speak Pig Latin as a kid?"

For the uninitiated, Pig Latin is a made-up language that moves the first consonant of a word to the end with an added "ay," and adds "way" to the end of a word that starts with a vowel.

Got it? Good.

In this comic, however, Grant Snider of Incidental Comics imagines a pig reenacting many of the common Latin phrases that have been assimilated into the English language, redefining "Pig Latin" entirely.

There's one idiom you may not be familiar with: Snider notes that John Steinbeck used to sign books with a drawing of a flying pig next to the motto Ad astra per alas porci — "to the stars on the wings of a pig." Read more...

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Study: Teens Watch More Mobile Video Than Older Peers

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 05:28 PM PDT


It might be no surprise to parents that their 12- to 17-year-olds are watching more video on mobile devices and less on plain old TV than those slightly older.

A Nielsen report that analyzed media habits of 12- to 34-year-olds, found that those in the 12 to 17 age range spend seven hours and 48 minutes per month on average watching video on a mobile phone. That's 18% more than 18- to 24-year-olds and a huge 46% more than those 25- to 34-year-olds.

However, when it comes to Internet video, 18- to 24-year-olds spent the most time watching content on their computers. The 25- to 34-year-olds surpassed those younger than them in traditional TV-watching, clocking in an average of about 136 hours a month. Read more...

More about Teens, Teenagers, Lifestyle, Family Parenting, and Teenage

Yankees, Red Sox Make Poignant Statement After Boston Bombings

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 04:46 PM PDT


Tragedies such as the Boston Marathon bombings can make sports seem meaningless. But they can also remind us of the powerful role sports play in society, as both communal escapes from stress and symbolic rallying points in times of crisis

Major League Baseball's New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox provided powerful examples of that on Tuesday, 24 hours after the explosions that killed three people and injured well over 100 more at Monday's race

Typically bitter rivals on the field, the Yankees and Red Sox engaged in some digital conversation that inspired sports fans across the country and became widely shared on the social web. Read more...

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Twitter Donates Promoted Trend to 'One Boston'

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 03:56 PM PDT


Entertainers, athletes and ordinary citizens aren't the only ones aiding Boston residents after Monday afternoon's deadly bombings at the Boston MarathonTwitter lent a helping hand of its own on Tuesday in the form of a donated promoted trend on the microblogging network

That's the #OneBoston hashtag you can see at the top of Twitter's list of worldwide trends

The hashtag has been used as a rallying cray for support for the city since Monday's bombings. Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Tom Menino on Tuesday announced the formation of the The One Fund, a organization that takes donations and seeks "to help the people most affected by the tragic events that occurred in Boston on April 15, 2013." Read more...

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10 Powerful Images of NYC Showing Its Love for Boston

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 03:11 PM PDT


The rivalry between New York City and Boston took a timeout Tuesday

Following Monday's bombings at the Boston marathon, the Big Apple put aside its typical Beantown smack talk to show solidarity with its neighbor to the north. The New York Yankees, Mayor Bloomberg's office and the New York Stock Exchange all showed their support in touching ways.


We stand united with the @redsox:…

— New York Yankees (@Yankees) April 16, 2013


Love and support from NY to Beantown#PrayforBoston…

— Ryan Amirault (@RyanAmirault) April 16, 2013

More about New York City, Boston, Us, Watercooler, and Pics

DoSomething.Org Has 1 Million Texting Teens

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 02:56 PM PDT

Feed-twFeed-fb, the service that uses SMS messaging to connect teens with volunteer opportunities that don’t require money, a parent or a car, is now texting with more than 1 million teens. The not-for-profit organization made the announcement Tuesday at AllThingsD's Dive into Mobile Conference in New York City.

In a world filled with teens carrying powerful smartphones capable of far more than just simple texts, it's somewhat surprising to hear how heavily still relies on this feature-phone staple. "Texting is like the stepchild. It’s not as sexy as the mobile web or apps, but I’ll take it any day," quipped CEO Nancy Lublin. She added that it's in a better position that email. The autofill for "email is for..." in Google is "email is for old people." (Try it; it's true.) Read more...

More about Teens, Texting, Dosomething.Org, Mobile, and Us World

Here's What the Big Bang Sounded Like

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 02:43 PM PDT


In the beginning, there was a righteous bass.

So says physicist John Cramer, who has not only found evidence of the sound created during the Big Bang, but has also created a simulation of the low, deep noise emitted as the universe came into being.

After the Big Bang, the universe expanded so rapidly that matter itself resonated to create a deep bass noise, and sound waves themselves became stretched and warped. "As the early universe expanded, sound waves propagated through the dense medium that closed back on itself, so that the hypersphere of the universe rang like a bell," Cramer, a professor of physics at the University of Washington, explained. Read more...

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Twitter Mentions of 'Boston' Increased 20,000%

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 02:26 PM PDT


Monday's horrific bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon were covered in real-time on Twitter. It was where many people got real information as the events unfolded, along with a dose of misinformation.

If you thought your Twitter feed was filled with information about the Boston attack, you weren't wrong. Mentions of the world "Boston" skyrocketed on Twitter by a factor of 200, Twitter VP of Consumer Product Michael Sippey told AllThingsD's Dive into Mobile Conference in New York City on Tuesday.

Sippey, who also happens to be a short-distance runner, spoke emotionally about how he could imagine his own children watching him reach the finish line in a race when something like this happens Read more...

More about Twitter, Us World, Us, and Boston Marathon

HTC One Comes to T-Mobile April 24

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 02:07 PM PDT


T-Mobile has finally revealed the launch date for HTC One on its network: April 24. Answering questions from several Twitter users about the HTC One, T-mobile simply replied it will be launching the LTE version of the device on April 24.

@dnorde T-Mobile announced it will be launching the HTC One (LTE) April 24!^AG

— T-Mobile USA (@TMobileHelp) April 16, 2013

HTC's Android flagship sports a unibody aluminum chassis, a 4.7-inch, full HD display, a 4-megapixel camera with an "UltraPixel" image sensor, a 1.7GHz quad-core CPU and 2GB of RAM.

And if you trust this report from TmoNews, the One will also support Wi-Fi calling on T-Mobile's network Read more...

More about T Mobile, Tech, Mobile, and Htc One

White House Once Again Threatens to Veto CISPA

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 01:53 PM PDT


As it did when the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or CISPA, first passed the House Intelligence Committee last year, the White House on Tuesday said President Barack Obama's senior advisors would recommend he issue a veto threat on privacy grounds if the bill reached his desk in its current form

The House of Representatives, which first passed CISPA last year on a vote of 248-168 despite the veto threat before stalling in the Senate, is set to vote on the bill once again by the end of this week.

The Obama administration is particularly concerned CISPA would not require companies to take "reasonable steps" to strip cybersecurity data of personally identifiable information before sharing it with government agencies and would grant companies a "broad scope of liability limitations" in the case of privacy breaches. CISPA has been heavily criticized by privacy rights groups for failing to require such stripping and for granting legal protection to companies which potentially disclose private information about their customers. Read more...

More about Us, Barack Obama, Politics, Congress, and Cybersecurity

Yahoo Earnings Beat Estimates, But Core Problems Remain

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 01:49 PM PDT


Yahoo's profits in the first quarter beat Wall Street estimates, but the company's core advertising business still appears to be heading in the wrong direction

Yahoo reported earnings-per-share of $0.38 on revenue of $1.07 billion for the March quarter, beating the consensus estimate for earnings of $0.24 per share, but coming in below the $1.1 billion in revenue that analysts had expected. The stock declined by as much as 4% in after hours trading following the earnings release.

Search revenue increased by 6% from the same quarter a year ago to $384 million, but that wasn't enough to offset falling advertising revenues. Display revenues were particularly disappointing, declining by 11% year-over-year to $402 million, and price-per-click decreased 7%. Yahoo's $1.1 billion in revenue was down from $1.22 billion in the March quarter of 2012 Read more...

More about Yahoo, Stocks, Marissa Mayer, Business, and Media

Google Fiber TV Gets HBO and Cinemax

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 01:44 PM PDT


Google Fiber TV customers won't have to look elsewhere for their Game of Thrones fix anymore, as Google has just added HBO and Cinemax channels to its TV lineup

For $20 per month (tax not included), customers will be able to add an HBO package to their plan. The package, which is available today, includes HBO, HBO2, HBO Signature, HBO Family, HBO Latino, HBO Comedy, and HBO Zone.

And for $10/month (plus tax) customers will be able to enrich their plan with a Cinemax package that includes eight channels: Max, MoreMax, ActionMax, ThrillerMax, WMax, @Max, 5-StarMax, and OuterMax.

Those who want both can get a $40/month (plus tax) premium package including HBO, Cinemax, Showtime and STARZ Read more...

More about Google, Hbo, Google Fiber, Tv, and Tech

'Sports Illustrated' Cover Honors Boston Marathon First Responders

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 01:36 PM PDT


When a tragedy like the Boston Marathon bombing happens, it can be tough to define the line between sports news and hard news. This week, one of America's most iconic magazines gets it right. Above is the cover for April 22 issue of Sports Illlustrated, unveiled online Tuesday. It's some powerful stuff and no wonder the image has been shared far and wide on the social web since

Let us know what you think of it in the comments below

Image courtesy of Sports Illustrated

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Hands On With Facebook Chat Heads for iPhone and iPad

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 01:25 PM PDT


Facebook just updated its iOS app to version 6.0, adding support for chat heads and a new news feed

Chat heads debuted with Facebook Home last week and are available to all Android users as part of the Facebook Messenger app. The idea behind chat heads are to allow users to keep a running list of conversations going without having to stop what they are doing and switch apps.

While on Android, chat heads can exist as a layer within every app, on iOS, the experience is limited to being inside Facebook for iPhone or iPad. That takes away some of the joy of chat heads — namely the ability to have a persistent conversation no matter what you're doing on your device. Still, chat heads are great for users that spend a lot of time in the Facebook app and may want to carry on several chats without having to be tied to the messaging view itself. Read more...

More about Facebook, Iphone, Tech, Apps Software, and Mobile

Watch a 90-Year-Old Grandma Love the Oculus Rift

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 01:14 PM PDT


The Oculus Rift headset is an out-of-this-world piece of technology, capable of using realistic virtual reality experiences inside of games. While that might be impressive to people raised on the Internet, imagine how impressive it is to someone who has seen the rise of technology over the last nine decades.

Paul Rivot gave his grandmother, Rachel Mahassel, a chance to test out the Oculus Rift. He took her through a demo that tours Tuscany, rendered in 3D CGI. Watch above at her wonder and awe at seeing a realistic environment float before her eyes.

Mahassel even shouts the best grandma-y expressions, like "You bet your bottom dollar!" Her enthusiasm for the new technology is really heartwarming. Read more...

More about Gaming, Videos, Entertainment, Youtube Video Lead, and Oculus Rift

What’s Next for Facebook Home

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 01:14 PM PDT


Facebook Home is going international; chat heads have escaped the Home asylum and are arriving (in a limited fashion) on the iPhone. Now the social network is teasing future upgrades.

The first update to Facebook Home, which arrived on the HTC First and for select group of Android phones less than a week ago, will arrive by the second week in May, according to Facebook CTO and VP of Engineering Mike Schroepfer and Director of Mobile Engineering Cory Ondrejka who spoke at the AllThingsD Dive into Mobile Conference in New York City.

Ondrejka and Schroepfer wouldn’t offer specifics on the next version of Facebook Home, which replaces the Android launcher with a Facebook lock screen, Cover Feed and selection of Facebook-centric features. They did say that Camera and the Phone Dialer are both interesting. These are two areas that use Android’s intent system, something which Android developers can access. Read more...

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Rand McNally Brings Its Classic Road Atlas to iPad

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 12:56 PM PDT


Before everyone had a smartphone in their pocket, a good road atlas was found in every car’s glove box, with many of those created by Rand McNally.

A staple in the space for the past 90 years, the Atlas creator celebrated its 90th birthday this week with the release of an ebook version of its 2014 Road Atlas as well as an interactive iPad app.

The digital version of the Atlas includes updated maps for all 50 states as well as Canadian provinces, Mexico and Puerto Rico, and detailed inset maps for larger cities and national parks. Much like its analog predecessor, the digital version can be used anywhere once you download it, and doesn’t require a data connection. Read more...

More about App, Map, Ipad, Tech, and Apps Software

7 iPhone Concepts That'll Make You Salivate

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 12:39 PM PDT


Are you excited about the next-generation Apple iPhone? Do you wonder what kind of improvements iOS 7 might bring?

We have taken a look at some cool concept designs from Apple fans, who have imagined their visions of future iPhones, both in terms of hardware and software

Take a look through our selection of stunning concept videos in the gallery above. Let us know in the comments below what features and functionality you'd like to see in the next iPhone

Homepage image courtesy of Flickr, Jacob Bley Griffiths

More about Mobile, Video, Iphone, Apple, and Features

Why Brands Should Be Human on Social Media

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 12:31 PM PDT


The success of any social program is ultimately determined by its ability to connect on a one-to-one, human level. But what does it actually mean to be human in social media?

Is it having a fun and engaging brand? Speaking in everyday, colloquial language? Establishing a more relatable — even intentionally non-corporate — online presence?

To an extent, but these are surface symptoms. The core issue lies much deeper, in the nuances of how we interact with one another.

Specifically, there's a phenomenon in linguistics known as "code-switching." It refers to when a person alternates back and forth between multiple languages in a single conversation. Recently, a team at NPR dived into this concept, elevating it beyond linguistics and identifying its prevalence and significance on a cultural and sociological level. Read more...

More about Social Media Marketing, Branding, Brand Management, Brand, and Brand Marketing

You Can Finally Download and Use Mailbox's App Without Waiting in Line

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 12:18 PM PDT


If you've been interested in trying out Mailbox's app, but didn't feel like waiting behind thousands of people in line, now's your chance.

Mailbox, the much-hyped email app for iPhone, announced Tuesday that it is finally doing away with its reservation system and letting users download and use the latest version of the app right away. The startup originally introduced the reservation system in early February to stagger the number of users who signed up for the app in order to make sure its servers could handle the load.

"After 10 weeks of around-the-clock hard work, our engineering team has scaled the Mailbox service to deliver over 100 million messages per day (and growing)," the company said in a blog post. "We believe we can now confidently handle new users as they sign up, so we’ve pulled down the reservation system." Read more...

More about Apps, Business, Startups, Apps Software, and Mailbox

10 Touching Acts of Kindness at the Boston Marathon

Posted: 16 Apr 2013 11:54 AM PDT


In the 24 hours since the Boston Marathon bombings, amazing stories of kindness have also emerged

From the first responders who ran fearlessly toward the smoke to the Bostonians who opened their doors to stranded runners, the Internet has found solace in reading and sharing the firsthand accounts of people who stepped up to help in a moment of tragedy.

We collected 10 examples of the kindness displayed during the aftermath of bombings. If you've seen any other stories worth sharing, please post in the comments below.

1. Joe Andruzzi

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