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February 23 2014


February 08 2014

Confessions Of A Flappy Bird Addict
Flappy Bird Addiction DoneJust a quick game. It only takes a second. I, I need to beat my high score. That stupid bird. DAMMIT! Ok this time I'll do better. DAMMIT! Alright the ad distracted me. F*CKKKK! I was doing so good. NOOOooo!

February 05 2014

What Happens To California If Silicon Valley Became A State, In 7 Charts
jennifer-Lawrence-on-fire-in-New-Hunger-Games-Catching-Fire-TrailerAt least one wealthy tech investor wants to encourage California's latent separatist tendencies and slice California into six different states, including one State of Silicon Valley. Per California law, no matter unlikely or odd a proposed ballot proposition is the Secretary of State releases a report to voters on a bill's potential economic impacts [PDF]. Usually, ballot proposition analysis is pretty dry, but making Silicon Valley it's own state? This was one was a lot more interesting.
Tags: TC california WTF

February 01 2014

GoDaddy Updates Its User Protection Policies In Wake Of Infamous Twitter Account Extortion
Screen Shot 2014-02-01 at 11.06.22 AMGoDaddy has updated its account security policies in the wake of the now infamous extortion of a Twitter account. As TechCrunch previously reported, a hacker claimed to have gained the Twitter user’s last four credit card digits from PayPal, which was then used to convince GoDaddy to reset their account. The compromised GoDaddy account — and its requisite domain collection — was used as leverage to extort the user out of their excellent Twitter account, @N. In the wake of the hacking and ensuing outrage over lax security, denials of culpability, TechCrunch wondered out loud why Twitter itself hadn’t made @n whole. We spoke to @n, known to most as Naoki Hiroshima, after the fact and and he detailed a few things that GoDaddy should do to tighten its security, methods that might have helped protect his account: “[Two factor authentication] can’t prevent this from happening again,” says Hiroshima. “GoDaddy allowed the guy to reset everything over the phone. As long as a company only uses the last 4 digits of a [credit card] to verify [identity], this will keep happening. They should ask multiple questions.” GoDaddy has made steps that mirror what Hiroshima felt was needed. In a tweet today, the company said the following: @N_is_stolen Will do. We now require 8 card digits, lock after 3 attempts and deal with 2-factor authentication accounts differently. ^NF Requiring more credit card digits matters as if the hacker in question had been required to provide that quantity of information, the jig would have been up prematurely: The hacker claims that PayPal gave them the last four digits of Hiroshima’s credit card. If the GoDaddy threshold had been higher, we wouldn’t be talking about this now. It’s a bummer that GoDaddy was able to be compromised in the above way, but the new security policies should reduce future risk for its customers, of which I am one. I’ve reached out to GoDaddy for a fuller explanation of the changes to its security policies, and will update this post when I hear back. Top Image Credit: Flickr (Image cropped)
Tags: TC WTF GoDaddy

January 30 2014

Now The Rich Can 3D Print Their Own Cup Holders For The Tesla Model S
IMG_0365_preview_featuredAs you whiz down the highway from LA to Las Vegas in your Tesla Model S, your Bluetooth humming, your Google Glass flashing messages from VCs trying to get into your next round, wouldn't it be nice to be able to reach down and grab a refreshing cup of ice-cold Kombucha? Well now you can 3D print your very own custom center console designed to hold your fermented teas, fair trade lip balms, or any number of other tchotchkes, bootstrap-style!

January 24 2014

Sheryl Sandberg’s “Lean In” Gets A Movie Deal
Sheryl.Sandberg-cropIn an era where movie creators simply copy books for lack of original ideas, Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In has been picked up for a movie deal. According to the WSJ, Sony Pictures Entertainment has announced that it has acquired the film rights to the Ms. Sandberg's book, which was published last year.
Facebook Hilariously Debunks Princeton Study Saying It Will Lose 80% Of Users
science_by_egophiliac-d4n2gxaLast week Princeton researchers released a widely covered study saying Facebook would lose 80% of its users by 2015-2017. But now Facebook's data scientists have turned the study's idiotic "correlation equals causation" methodology of tracking Google search volume against it to show Princeton would lose all of its students by 2021.

January 14 2014

Conan Goes Extreme With His GoPro Cameras
Image (1) coco12.jpg for post 135531In honor of CES and just because, here's a cute video for you. It's not quite Citizen Kane but in this exciting video Conan O'Brien attaches GoPro cameras to objects around his studio... with some craaaazy results! Oh, Coco, you had me at "trombone."

January 10 2014

Google Maps Mistakenly Labels Berlin Square After Hitler
2014-01-10_1016Google lets anybody suggest changes to its maps, and on January 2, an anonymous user suggested that Theodor-Heuss square in Berlin shouldn't be named after Germany's first federal president but after Adolf Hitler. Google uses a small army of volunteers and its own moderators to check all submissions before they go live, and whoever checked this one apparently thought the submission was correct. So for the next few days, the square was called "Adolf Hitler Platz" in Google Maps.

December 28 2013

The Bathys Atomic Watch Is Heading Towards A Crowdfunded Future
Bathys-Cesium-133-atomic-watch-3Bathys, a boutique watchmaker based on Kauai, Hawaii and run by one determined man, first announced their wild Cesium 133 atomic watch in October. Now, a few months later, the company is nearly ready to hit the shoals of crowdfunding.

December 25 2013

Google Destroys Rap Genius’ Search Rankings As Punishment For SEO Spam, But Resolution In Progress
Goolge Vs Rap GeniusGoogle hit back hard today after it learned lyrics site Rap Genius had been using dubious SEO tricks to attain top spots in search results. Now doesn't appear on the first page of results for a search of "Rap Genius", and popular queries like "Jay-Z Holy Grail Lyrics" don't bring up the startup like they used to. The reduced traffic could devestate the well-funded startup.

December 23 2013

Yes, It’s Real: Tim Draper Gives Details On Ballot Initiative To Make Silicon Valley A State
sixStatesSilicon Valley is no stranger to unusual ideas, and today the world got to witness another: noted investor Tim Draper is proposing a ballot proposition to split California into six separate states. There were obviously a lot of questions raised by Draper’s “Six Californias” proposal after we first broke the news last Thursday, so the man with the controversial plan held a press conference this afternoon. “The status quo is just not going to work,” said draper. “The existing breadth of industry and various interests in California is untenable.” Draper’s ballot proposition itself breaks California into six entities: Silicon Valley, West California, Jefferson, South California, Central California and North California. Other than Draper’s desire to decentralize Californian governance, we really didn’t know how it would all go down until today. So, here are your burning questions answered: How Will California Be Redrawn? “We allowed great flexibility” for individual counties to finely tune the rough outline of the six different territories, Draper said during the press event. He expects the citizens to crowdsource many of the ideas around water rights, a new state flag, and other official duties. What About Congress? Each state is supposed to get two senators, this would add 10 more to Congress (five additional states total). So, presumably, federal authorities will have to buy more chairs for the Senate floor, and also completely shift around the tight two-party balance that the Senate has maintained for over 200 years. “They’ll be nervous about change,” says Draper, who thinks government will eventually accept a better governed region. Who’s Paying For This? Draper is bootstrapping his own political brainchild. “I will make sure it gets on the ballot, he said. This can cost millions of dollars and there’s no big partners yet on board. But Draper says he’s seen a lot of grassroots interest. There’s still a lot of process questions that have to be worked out. What happens after it passes? Who’s in charge of creating new governors, redrawing congressional districts, and distributing natural resources? Draper couldn’t answer these in great detail, because they’ll supposedly be answered over the next several months. When Draper first proposed this idea to me at the Nantucket Project conference, I had my doubts. But, yes, this is in fact happening. Six Californias. Draper expects to hold another press conference when he gets a million signatures.

November 21 2013

Don't Spam Facebook With Fake Bieber Porn Unless You Want To Get Sued
The only thing better than porn is celebrity porn, but that doesn't mean you should use it as bait in a Facebook spam operation. That's what a man named Christopher Peter Tarquini is alleged to have done, and as expected, Facebook isn't so pleased with his actions and has named Tarquini in court documents.

November 19 2013

LoveRoom Lets You Share Your Home, And Bed, With Strangers
Sometimes the thrill of letting a perfect stranger live your home just isn't enough. That's why an Airbnb with benefits has emerged called LoveRoom, which marries the idea of room/house-sharing with online dating. Word has it that the startup began as a half-baked joke of sorts, and after getting plenty of media attention, founder Josh Bocanegra has decided to stick it out with a live beta.
KlearGear Goes Into Social Media Lockdown After It Charges Customers For Posting Bad Reviews
KlearGear, a sort of ThinkGeek for folks who don't value good web design, is in trouble. The company recently rose to prominence when they charged a customer $3,500 for posting mean social media commentary. After unleashing the righteous anger of the Internet the company has protected its Twitter account and closed its Facebook page [which is now some sort of privately-created page] in response to repeated snark attacks.

November 09 2013

“F*ck You, Google+”, An Adorable Song About YouTube's New Comments
YouTubers are not pleased about being forced onto Google+ for commenting, and one girl took a stand in the cutest, most profane way imaginable. "You ruined our site and called it integration, I'm writing this song just to vent our frustration. Fuck you Google Plusssssss!"

October 29 2013

Google/Motorola's New Moonshot “Spotlight Stories” Is A Mobile Virtual Reality Movie Medium
Spotlight Stories is a new artistic medium Google and Motorola launched today that puts users inside an animated featurette if they spin 360-degrees while watching their phones. The first Spotlight Story "Windy Days" by ex-Pixar moviemakers suddenly appeared on Moto X phones today, and depicts a mouse chased by a hat around a forest you can look around.

October 07 2013

Fox News And Its Big-Ass Touchscreens
And in this week's episode of absolutely bizarre behavior from Fox News, we bring you BATS, officially known as big area touchscreens. The media outlet responsible for bringing fair and balanced news into our lives has today released a video that shows off the network's brand-new Fox News Deck studio, a room filled with video walls and giant 55-inch touchscreens that will henceforth deliver the news to Fox News viewers, along with Shepard Smith.

October 04 2013

Today In Dystopian War Robots That Will Harvest Us For Our Organs
Welcome to our continuing series featuring videos of robots that will, when they become autonomous, hunt us down and force us to work in the graphene factories of Mars. Below we see Wild Cat, a fully untethered remote control quadrupedal robot made by Boston Dynamics, creators of the famous Big Dog. This quadruped can run up to 16 miles an hour and features a scary-sound internal gas engine that can power it across rough terrain. Wild Cat was funded by the DARPA’s M3 program aimed at introducing flexible, usable robots into natural environments AKA introducing robotic pack animals for ground troops and build flocking, heavily armed robots that can wipe out a battlefield without putting humans in jeopardy. Next up we have ATLAS, another Boston Dynamics bot that can walk upright on rocks. Sadly ATLAS is tethered to a power source but he has perfect balance and can survive side and front hits from heavy weights – a plus if you’re built to be the shock troops of a new droid army. ATLAS can even balance on one foot while being smacked with wrecking balls, something the average human can’t do without suffering internal damage. I can’t wait for him to be able to throw cinder blocks! Finally we present these charming self-assembling robots from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory which we covered earlier today. The robots exert an internal force to spin and then connect with each other using magnets, allowing them to fly into the air for a second and then fall down next to their brothers and sisters in exactly the right spot. This allows these completely featureless squares to form any shape they want and, like autonomous LEGOs, they can build complex devices out of a few simple shapes. “There’s a point in time when the cube is essentially flying through the air,” said researcher Kyle Gilpin. “And you are depending on the magnets to bring it into alignment when it lands. That’s something that’s totally unique to this system.” They may look innocuous but imagine these things self-assembling into, say, a wall, a door, or even a plate of explosives. They could sneak through pipes into your home and create a robotic assassin to destroy you in the sleep, thereby freeing up your “Schlafplatz” for other humans who have been reduced to sleeping out of doors after the robots took over most habitable

September 21 2013

Your Nosy Boy/Girlfriend Can Unlock Your iPhone 5s With Your Thumb While You Sleep
The passcode can't die yet. The iPhone 5s's Touch ID fingerprint security system can be unlocked with your finger even if you're asleep. That means a jealous lover could hold your phone to your thumb while you slumber and read all your texts, call logs, emails, and more.
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