Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Mashable: Latest 29 News Updates - including “Apple Gives Out Gift Cards to Students for Mac, iPhone and iPad Purchases”

Mashable: Latest 29 News Updates - including “Apple Gives Out Gift Cards to Students for Mac, iPhone and iPad Purchases”

Apple Gives Out Gift Cards to Students for Mac, iPhone and iPad Purchases

Posted: 02 Jul 2013 04:33 AM PDT


Apple has started a new round of its annual "Back to School" promotion, offering $100 iTunes gift cards to students who buy a Mac, and $50 gift cards for those who buy an iPad or iPhone.

Apple also points out that students and teachers can save up to $200 on Mac purchases

The program applies to college students, parents buying for a college student, teachers, homeschool teachers, administrators and staff of all grade levels

To learn more about the deals, check out Apple's Online Store for Education

Image courtesy of Apple

More about Iphone, Apple, Macbook, Ipad, and Tech

With Don Mattrick Gone, What's Next for the Xbox Team?

Posted: 02 Jul 2013 03:56 AM PDT


Just three weeks ago, Don Mattrick, Microsoft's now former head of its Interactive Entertainment Division, addressed a packed room at E3 for Microsoft's annual Xbox press conference. Mattrick kicked off Microsoft's event, where the company showed off 15 titles for the Xbox One, the next generation console due out in November.

Three weeks later, and Mattrick is headed to Zynga as its next CEO, to help the struggling social game publisher get back on track with new management.

While that's all well and good for Mattrick and Zynga, it leaves Microsoft in a lurch five months before the next console, and it's a question of whether this will set it back considerably. Read more...

More about Microsoft, Gaming, Xbox, Entertainment, and Xbox One

11 Vine Videos that Celebrate Connections

Posted: 02 Jul 2013 03:08 AM PDT


In honor of Social Media Day, the theme for this week's Mashable Vine Challenge was "special connections."

We chose the 10 submissions that best celebrate the meaningful connections social media brings to our lives

SEE ALSO: 11 Vine Hashtags to Keep You Hooked

As always, we were excited to see so many creative entries from the Mashable Vine community. From stop-motion to humor, we always look forward to seeing what you come up with!

Each week, we challenge you to create a Vine video and tweet it with a specific hashtag. (This week's hashtag was #SMDay.) Be sure to stay tuned to Mashable on Vine for next week's challenge! Read more...

More about Vine, Social Media Day, Smday, Social Media, and Apps Software

See Saturn's Rings in Stunning 4K Resolution

Posted: 02 Jul 2013 02:40 AM PDT


During its visit to Saturn, NASA's Cassini-Huygens spacecraft took hundreds of thousands of high-resolution images of the planet and its moons

Now, filmmaker Stephen van Vuuren has assembled those photographs and created a documentary called "In Saturn's Rings," an IMAX-ready visual feast for anyone interested in Space exploration

Although van Vuuren used only still images for the movie, he used a "2.75D" photographic fly-through technology to make them animated, though the filmmakers insist no CGI or visual effects were used. The visuals are accompanied with music by Ferry Corsten, William Orbit and Samuel Barber. Read more...

More about 4k, Entertainment, Video, Saturn, and In Saturn S Rings

Usher Picks Songs for Empire State Building's Big July 4 Light Show

Posted: 02 Jul 2013 01:54 AM PDT


If you're still looking for a way to spend your Fourth of July, consider putting the Empire State Building's televised light show at the top of your list.

For Independence Day, the behemoth of a building is teaming up with the 37th Annual Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks for an explosive celebration, in which the skyscraper's LED tower lights will mirror New York City's pyrotechnics with a choreographed light show. Eight-time Grammy Award-winning artist Usher has scored the soundtrack for the event and has also helped inspire the design elements for the night's “It Begins With a Spark" finale. Read more...

More about New York, Fireworks, Led, Empire State Building, and Fourth Of July

'The Great Gatsby' Wasn't Nearly as Great Before Video FX

Posted: 02 Jul 2013 12:32 AM PDT


Baz Luhrmann's version of The Great Gatsby may have received mixed reviews when it hit theaters in May, but it's tough to deny the film's stunning visuals

Luhrmann brought the Roaring Twenties to life in glittering shots of lavish parties and twinkling cityscapes. Part of the film's appeal is the retina-stinging imagery in every shot — a vintage car whizzing down the road, a gown dripping with beads, an art deco castle arching skywards

Chris Godfrey, the film's video effects supervisor, has released a before and after reel to reveal how he and his team recreated Fitzgerald's world. Watch the reel below to get a taste of how Gatsby came to life. The movie's theme, Lana del Rey's hauntingly melodic "Young and Beautiful," provides the clip's musical background. Read more...

More about Film, Watercooler, Videos, The Great Gatsby, and Vfx

Jay-Z's 'Magna Carta' Stunt Provokes RIAA to Change Album Sales Rules

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 10:46 PM PDT


The Recording Industry Association of America's 55-year-old barometer for measuring an artist's or group's commercial success continues to evolve. Just weeks after altering its Gold & Platinum Awards Program to include on-demand audio and video streams, the RIAA this week has made another tweak to "modernize" the certification process.

Digital sales of an album will now count toward the certification requirements beginning on the album's release date — instead of the 30-day wait time that was initially instituted to accurately tally physical sales (CDs, cassettes, vinyl and other formats)

The RIAA admits Jay-Z's marketing stunt with Samsung for the July 4 release of Magna Carta Holy Grail influenced the rule change. The rapper is giving away one million copies of the album, purchased by Samsung, to one million owners of the Samsung Galaxy S III, Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note II. Those Samsung users must download an app to snag a copy Read more...

More about Music, Entertainment, Riaa, Celebrities, and Jay Z

Firefox OS Smartphones Will Dazzle Feature Phone Users

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 06:01 PM PDT


Mozilla’s Firefox OS is headed to a smartphone near you.

The first two phones running the Firefox OS — the ZTE Open and Alcatel One Touch Fire — were officially announced Monday morning, with the ZTE Open expected to hit store shelves in Spain on Tuesday.

“For many customers, this will be the first smartphone they purchase,” Mozilla’s Brendan Eich told press at a small event at Mozilla’s San Francisco office Monday morning

“We’re pioneering a category,” says Eich, of open web devices. The ZTE Open is in fact the first smartphone available on the market based entirely on open web standards. That means everything on the phone is running in a web browser. While some core apps are stored on the phone and can work offline, the web is the backbone of the phone's every action. Read more...

More about Mozilla, Tech, Mobile, and Firefox Os

15 Bald Eagles Wearing Wigs

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 05:52 PM PDT


The bald eagle may be the national bird of the United States, but even that coveted position can't guarantee a full head of lush hair

Instead, you're just reminded — everywhere you turn — that you're bald. It's in your name. You can't escape. It's really not fair.

So get ready, bald eagles. And put away the Rogaine. We're giving you the wigs and toupees you've always dreamed of just in time for the Fourth of July. Because there's no harm in faking it.


bald eagle red hair wigMashable composite. Images via Flickr, Drew Avery; thepeachpeddler


bald eagle head red toupeeMashable composite. Images via Flickr, greyloch; Kathy Coleman Read more...

More about Pics, Humor, Bald Eagles, Fourth Of July, and Watercooler

Sony’s First 4K Ultra HD Media Player Is Now Available

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 05:06 PM PDT


Sony promised a 4K media player at this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES). On Monday, Sony said the device is now ready for consumers to order and there will be more content for it this fall.

Sony's FMP-X1, 4K Ultra HD Media Player device can be ordered online Monday for $699, and it will hit store shelves on July 15. The term 4K, also known as Ultra HD, describes a resolution that is four times greater than 1080p resolution — which is what you find on many HD TVs today. The 4K media player feeds 4K content to Sony's 4K televisions.

With the Sony 4K media player's high price tag, the company is throwing in 10 free 4K Ultra HD feature films. Also, for anyone who bought the pricey Sony X900A 4K Ultra HD TV, they will get $200 off the media player price. Those TV owners can also check online to see if their 4K TV qualifies for access to Sony's premium 4K movie content. Read more...

More about Sony, Televisions, 4k, Tvs, and Tech

41 Songs That Are Red, White and Blue All Over

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 04:49 PM PDT


We celebrate Independence Day in the United States this Thursday, which means you may soon hit your saturation point for Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the U.S.A."

We're with you. Music can be a great creative (and catchy) outlet for expressions of patriotism, but the backyard barbecue playlist can get stale quickly when every song's chorus cheers "America!" and "U.S.A.!" That's why this week our Music Monday has taken on a more creative interpretation of tunes for the holiday

We give you 41 songs with the words "red," "white" and "blue" featured in the song or album title or artist name, regardless of patriotic sentiment. Rules like these lead to fun and sometimes strange results: R&B king R. Kelly's "Red Carpet (Pause, Flash)" starts off the playlist, followed by Vampire Weekend's "White Sky"; Sky Ferreira's "Red Lips" leads into Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit"; and Justin Timberlake's "Blue Ocean Floor" flows into the 1920s jazzy, orchestral masterpiece of a finale, George Gershwin's "Rhapsody In Blue." (And if you were worried we'd miss Eiffel65's late '90s one-off hit "Blue (Da Ba Dee)" — we've got you covered.) Read more...

More about Music, Community, Playlist, Spotify, and Music Monday

How a Pixar Short Blurs Line Between Animation and Reality

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 04:22 PM PDT


Critical opinion is divided on the latest Pixar movie, Monsters University. Like many reviewers, we found it fun but predictable, a little bland, and not up to the studio's historic standards. Still, Pixar proved it is able to push the envelope in animation with a stunning short film that precedes Monsters U

Called The Blue Umbrella, it has won widespread praise as the most photorealistic piece of animation yet. If you've seen it, you're probably wondering: Is every frame really computer-generated? (Answer: yep.) And what city is it supposed to be set in? For the answer(s), read on

SEE ALSO Monsters University: What to Expect When You Enroll Read more...

More about Animation, Pixar, Entertainment, and Film

Time-Lapse Video of San Francisco Fog Is Your Moment of Zen

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 04:06 PM PDT


Those of us here at Mashable's San Francisco bureau are all too familiar with the chilly coastal fog that regularly cascades through the city from the Pacific Ocean. And one Bay Area photographer has captured a time-lapse video of this natural phenomenon that is nothing short of magical.

Oakland, Calif.-based photographer Simon Christen said in the "Adrift" Vimeo video description that he spent two years capturing this footage from the Marin Headlands, which is just north of San Francisco.

"I developed a system for trying to guess when to make the drive out to shoot, which involved checking the weather forecast, satellite images and webcams multiple times a day," Christen wrote. Read more...

More about California, Fog, Time Lapse, Timelapse, and Watercooler

Edward Snowden Breaks Silence From Russia

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 03:31 PM PDT


Edward Snowden broke his days-long silence Monday.

The NSA whistleblower, who has been stuck in Moscow's Sheremyetevo airport since June 23, threatened new disclosures in a letter sent to Ecuador's President Rafael Correa, partially published by Reuters, and released a separate statement through WikLeaks

Snowden claims the United States is persecuting him for revealing the NSA top secret surveillance programs, according to an undated, Spanish-language letter seen by Reuters.

"I remain free and able to publish information that serves the public interest," Snowden wrote. "No matter how many more days my life contains, I remain dedicated to the fight for justice in this unequal world. If any of those days ahead realize a contribution to the common good, the world will have the principles of Ecuador to thank." Read more...

More about Privacy, Surveillance, Prism, Us World, and Us

Google Reader Final Countdown: What to Do Before the Shutdown

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 03:27 PM PDT


Google Reader officially shuts down after July 1. The much-loved service might be going to that great Google graveyard in the sky, but that doesn't mean news lovers are out of options.

If you've been putting off moving away from Google Reader — or if you are just now hearing about the shutdown for the first time — we've got some tips for everything you need to do before July 2.

Back Up Your Subscriptions

The single most important thing you can do before July 1 ends is to back up your existing Google Reader subscriptions

To do that, make sure you're logged into your Google Reader account and then click this link: http://www.google.com/reader/subscriptions/export. This will download an XML file with all of your subscriptions. Read more...

More about Rss, Google Reader, Feedly, Tech, and Apps Software

A Yearbook Legend: Teacher Wears Same Outfit in 40 Photos

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 02:49 PM PDT


Dale Irby is a creature of habit. The Dallas, Texas, physical education teacher wore the exact same polyester shirt and knit sweater vest for the past 40 years of yearbook photos

The 2012-2013 Prestonwood Elementary School yearbook marks the outfit's final appearance. According to the Dallas Morning News, Irby retired after a 40-year career.

Irby's work wardrobe consisted mainly of athletic clothes. With few formal options, he chose the shirt and sweater combo for his first yearbook photo in 1973. The following year, he accidentally repeated the outfit, he told the Dallas Morning News. Read more...

More about Fashion, Photo, Yearbook, Teacher, and Watercooler

Hilarious Tumblr Imagines Celebrities as Ears of Corn

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 02:41 PM PDT


Have you ever noticed that your half-shucked ear of corn bears a strong resemblance to Miley Cyrus?

No? Well, this new Tumblr notices. And it's giving the ear of corn its big moment online.

Claire Carusillo, the brainchild behind the hilarious Icorns Tumblr, imagines how blonde celebrities would look as ears of corn.

"I was shucking corn the other day and noticed that the weird hair-like substance inside the husk of an ear of corn sort of resembled my own tangled mop of blonde," Carusillo told Mashable

"I put the corn hair (later Yahoo Answers queries revealed it's called 'silk') into a topknot — my favorite hairdo — and the corn completely anthropomorphized into a small, blonde lookalike. A die-hard lover of both corn and celebrity, I put the two concepts together and had my sister, an artist who claims she got her BFA in Photoshop, do the cut-outs." Read more...

More about Pics, Celebrities, Tumblr, Memes, and Watercooler

Stanford Trades Twitter Handle to Syracuse

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 02:35 PM PDT


Two universities were the talk of the Internet early Monday after Stanford traded its old Twitter handle, @SUAthletics, to Syracuse — for fruits both symbolic and literal.

"The trade is believed to be the first blockbuster trade in college athletics," Stanford wrote on its athletics website. "To complete the trade, Syracuse will send a collection of local goods to be named later but also including one case of oranges, which Stanford intends to use in refilling its 2011 Orange Bowl trophy."

The schools' social media accounts circulated the humorous announcement, and explained that the name change occurred after the creation of Stanford's new handle, @GoStanford. Read more...

More about Twitter, Social Media, Stanford, Ncaa, and Basketball

Arizona Wildfire Spreads in Haunting Time-Lapse Video

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 02:01 PM PDT


On Sunday evening, the Yarnell Hill Wildfire killed 19 firefighters in Yarnell, Ariz. This time-lapse video, recorded by photographer Matt Oss, offers a glimpse into the scale and the speed of the fire, which was the deadliest in decades, as reported by the National Fire Protection Association.

The 20-minute video was shot at 4 p.m. MST on Sunday. Near the end, flames rise above the mountain peak.

Image courtesy of The U.S. Department of Agriculture

More about Videos, Wildfires, Arizona, Us, and Watercooler

Vine Users Craft Beautiful Nelson Mandela Tributes

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 01:51 PM PDT


Nelson Mandela has fallen gravely ill as he approaches his 95th birthday. The former South African president who led his nation out of apartheid has been hospitalized in Pretoria for nearly a month with a lung infection

Per a statement from the office of current President Jacob Zuma, Mandela's condition is stable but critical. However, his health has been fluctuating, and people fear he may not recover from his ailment.

On Vine, some users are paying homage and sending love to Mandela through animations and artwork using the hashtag #hugformandela Read more...

More about Vine, Africa, Us World, World, and Nelson Mandela

50 Gourmet Twists on Classic Summer Treats

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 01:44 PM PDT


Summer food is all about simplicity.

A hot dog, ear of corn and a popsicle — and boom, dinner is ready. Less time in the kitchen means more time outside, at the pool or with your face mere inches from the air conditioner.

But even the most expertly toasted s'mores can get boring after a while. So we scoured our favorite food blogs for gourmet twists on classic summer staples. Try upgrading that basic s'mores into a nutella s'mores crepe — or turn a slice of watermelon into a more adventurous watermelon nectarine salsa.


10 Twists on S'mores:

  1. Grown-up s'mores (via SNAP!)

  2. No-bake s'mores pie (via Hummingbird High)

  3. Nutella s'mores crepes (via Something Swanky)

  4. Pretzel s'mores (via Love From the Oven)

  5. S'mores brownies in jars (via ValSoCa)

  6. S'mores cake (via I Heart Eating)

  7. S'mores cupcakes (via 52 Kitchen Adventures)

  8. S'mores ice cream sandwiches (via Love + Cupcakes)

  9. S'mores martini (via CopyCake Cook)

  10. S'mores rice krispie treats (via Minimalist Baker)

More about Lists, Summer, Bbqs Barbeque, Watercooler, and Home

Why NASA Redesigned Its Website

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 01:27 PM PDT


The new NASA.gov has a light blue color palette, one you may not immediately associate with deep space. The agency rolled out a website redesign over the weekend, which included tossing out the black background that shadowed NASA's website for years.

"The common complaint about our design was that there was too much going on," NASA Internet Services Manager Brian Dunbar told Mashable via email. "The lighter color palette seemed to open things up without us having to remove too much content. So far the reaction has been mixed, as is often the case."


More about Space, Nasa, Graphic Design, Website Design, and Computer Science

Fox's 'New Girl' Comes to Netflix

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 01:20 PM PDT


Netflix began offering the first season of Fox's popular comedy New Girl on Monday, after the video-streaming service and Twentieth Century Fox Television inked a deal to stream it exclusively. Season two and future seasons of the show will hit Netflix after their broadcast seasons end.

Netflix rival Hulu only offers the past six episodes of New Girl at any given time before older episodes disappear, which fans of the show have criticized on the show's Hulu page

"New Girl has proven to be the biggest breakout sitcom hit of the season and we are thrilled to be able offer it so quickly to our U.S. subscribers," Ted Sarandos, Netflix's chief content officer, said in announcement. "We know our members love comedies and that they'll enjoy watching all the current and future episodes of New Girl whenever and wherever they want." Read more...

More about Entertainment, Netflix, Tv, Streaming Video, and Fox

Zynga Names Microsoft's Don Mattrick as New CEO

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 01:10 PM PDT


Zynga has named former Microsoft Entertainment head Don Mattrick as its new CEO, replacing co-founder Mark Pincus, the company announced on Monday.

Mattrick, the former president of the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft, will take over on July 8. Pincus will remain chairman of the board and chief product officer.

In his former role, Mattrick oversaw a team that grew Microsoft’s Xbox 360 global install base by nearly 700% to about 75 million consoles, and grew Xbox Live membership from 6 million to nearly 50 million subscribers in 41 countries Read more...

More about Business and Mobile

Google Glass Adds Its First Website Browser

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 01:08 PM PDT


Google finally added a website browser to Google Glass. The company announced a few new updates to its high-tech specs on Monday, making it easier to find new content and communicate hands-free.

"We've been exploring ways to let you quickly dive deeper and get exactly the information you need, right when you need it," the company wrote in a Google+ post. "To test it out, search for something and then tap on the 'View website' screen to bring up the web page."

When a user is on a webpage, different commands on Google Glass' touchpad will mimic a mouse's movements on a laptop or a finger's movements on a touchscreen. For example, to scroll down a webpage, a user must slide his finger forward on the touchpad Read more...

More about Google, Mobile, Tech, Apps Software, and Google Glass

Snowden Applies for Asylum in Russia and 14 Other Countries

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 12:57 PM PDT


Edward Snowden, the NSA whistleblower who is still stuck in Moscow's Sheremyetevo airport, has reportedly applied for asylum in Russia and 14 other countries

His application for asylum in Russia was hand delivered on Sunday by WikiLeaks' Sarah Harrison, according to multiple news reports. A Russian official told The Los Angeles Times that Snowden has requested asylum from a total of 15 countries

Snowden is the source of recently revealed secret surveillance programs like NSA's phone records dragnet collection, and PRISM, as well as the Government Communications Headquarters Project Tempora (GCHQ is Britain's NSA equivalent)Snowden has been at Sheremyetevo since last Sunday, after fleeing Hong Kong Read more...

More about Privacy, Russia, Surveillance, Vladimir Putin, and Us World

2013's Complex Social Media Landscape in One Chart

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 12:30 PM PDT


When Brian Solis introduced the first Conversation Prism in 2008, the world was a seemingly simpler place. There were 22 social media categories, each of which had just a handful of brands. ("Video agreggation" had only one brand: Magnify.)

Flash forward to 2013, and the latest Conversation Prism (click here for the high-res downloadable version) has four additional categories with at least six brands in each. Like other Conversation Prisms, the data visualization attempts to illustrate the array of social media choices available to marketers. Various channels are classified by their function to the end user (i.e. "photos," "music" and "social curation." Read more...

More about Social Media, Brian Solis, Path, Business, and Marketing

Wedding Live Streams Up 250% in One Year

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 12:11 PM PDT


With wedding season in full swing, popular video streaming service Ustream has revealed data that webcasts of couples saying "I do" are up 250% in just one year.

A growing group of tech-savvy couples are incorporating live video streaming of their nuptials online, so friends and family who aren't able to make the event can still watch from afar. From May 2012 to May 2013, nearly 20,000 wedding broadcasts were streamed on Ustream, up from 7,800 from the same period the year before.

The service, along with others such as HangWith, Skype and I Do Stream, offer couples the option of broadcasting their weddings via the web. Couples can use laptop webcams or smartphones to capture the video for free, although the service can jump up in price (about $100) for more functionality such as greater storage or to remove ads. Read more...

More about Mobile, Ustream, Wedding, Lifestyle, and Family Parenting

Kanye West Gets Apple Mice Signed by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 11:52 AM PDT


It's no secret Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak visited Kanye West, Kim Kardashian and their newborn daughter North West in June as a birthday gift to the rapper. But Kayne revealed on Twitter on Monday that the two leading ladies in his life also gave him an Apple-centric Father's Day present: old mice signed by co-founders Wozniak and the late Steve Jobs.

The tech gifts came not long after Kanye emphatically compared himself to Jobs: "I think what Kanye West is going to mean is something similar to what Steve Jobs means. I am undoubtedly, you know, Steve of Internet, downtown, fashion, culture. Period. By a long jump. I honestly feel that because Steve has passed, you know, it’s like when Biggie passed and Jay-Z was allowed to become Jay-Z," Kanye recently told The New York Times. Read more...

More about Music, Entertainment, Celebrities, Steve Wozniak, and Steve Jobs

Exclusive Video: George Lucas Explains His Museum

Posted: 01 Jul 2013 11:37 AM PDT


Retired Star Wars supremo George Lucas had a fairly busy June. He went back to his hometown of Modesto to lead a parade of classic cars for the 40th anniversary of American Graffiti, opened a park complete with Yoda and Indiana Jones statues near his house, got married to longtime girlfriend Mellody Hobson in a ceremony at Skywalker Ranch, then flew to her town of Chicago for a star-studded reception

All the while, Lucas has been working behind the scenes on his proposed Cultural Arts Museum — not just a home for all the art he's collected over the last four decades, but a place to tell the story of visual storytelling. Find out more in the video above, which Lucas himself had a hand in editing, provided exclusively to Mashable. Read more...

More about San Francisco San Jose, George Lucas, Film, Us World, and Us

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