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Mobile device use has come under fire more and more in recent times, with numerous states outlawing talking on the phone without the use of a hands-free device. I've always contended that the action of holding a conversation is more dangerous than the act of holding the phone to your ear, but states apparently don't agree.
A new study finds that using a hands-free voice-to-text app is as distracting and dangerous as texting manually. The study showed that drivers who utilized hands-free texting apps didn't spend any less time looking at the screen. The study also found that drivers were just as distracted as users who manually input the text message.
This means that the act of composing the text message, not the act of physically inputting it, is what is the distracting part:
We did not find any differences between manual texting and the two voice-to-text apps that we tested in terms of driver response time and the amount of time looking at the forward roadway. The amount of time that drivers spent looking at the roadway ahead was significantly less when they were texting, no matter which texting method was used.
This means you should think twice before using that voice-to-text app as you are just as likely to have an accident. However, voice-to-text apps remain legal to use while manually inputting a text message has been outlawed in numerous states.
Google Chairman Eric Schmidt made a secret trip to meet with the infamous Julian Assange while he was under house arrest in 2011. The reason for the meeting? Schmidt was researching information for his soon to be released book The New Digital Age.
The conversation covered topics from Assange's thoughts on Bitcoins, to Assange's seemingly never ending list of "crazy female visitors", and even Schmidt's past experiences with Delta Airlines. Schmidt asks Assange about his feelings on the damage that is caused by his website's information leaks, to which Assange compares WikiLeaks to YouTube. He says that like Google, WikiLeaks cannot review every piece of information uploaded to its site.
Assange went on to suggest that Google could provide WikiLeaks with some information on requests made by the US government under the Patriot Act. Schmidt responded by telling Assange that that would be illegal, but he would have Google's lead council forward future request notifications to WikiLeaks.
Showing that he isn't just a one-hit-wonder, Psy's Gentleman has rocketed up 100 million views in just three days, tying a record previously set by the Russian Meteor in February of this year. Meanwhile, Gangnam Style has shot past 1.5 billion views, an impressive feat as well.
VisibleMeasures has created the graph seen above that compares various videos and the time it took them to reach 100 million views. In comparison, Gentleman has moved at a much faster rate than Gangnam Style, likely due to Psy having gained a large audience from Gangnam Style.
If you're curious about several other metrics regarding Gentleman, check out source #1 below.
Psy's new single, Gentleman, has seen its YouTube video watched a record 67 million times in just two days, beating out the records of Justin Bieber and Gangnam Style. Bieber previously held the record for most YouTube views in a day, which was bested by Gentleman with 22 million views in 16 hours.
Those are impressive figures. Gangnam Style took 60 days to hit 350 million views. An interesting note pointed out by VentureBeat is that, proportionally, Gentleman isn't nearly as well received as Gangnam Style. Gangnam Style has around 10 likes for every one dislike. Gentleman, on the other hand, has only six likes for every dislike.
What do you think of Psy's new single Gentleman?
We know you all loved Psy's hit single Gangnam Style. After all, it was the first YouTube video to surge past one billion views on YouTube. Not wanting to be forgotten, Psy has announced that his next single will be livestreamed from Seoul World Cup Stadium via YouTube on April 13 at 5:30 a.m. EDT.
If you're not going to be awake at that time, YouTube will rebroadcast the event for 24 hours after it first airs. Psy has promised that Gentleman will feature a new dance move. "I can't tell you about the dance but all Koreans know this dance - but [those in] other countries haven't seen it," Psy said.
If you want to hear the song ahead of the live event, you can check it out on Soundcloud. Let us know what you think of the song in the comments.
Kim Dotcom, the founder of the popular Mega file locker service, has yet another reason to taunt US authorities who wish to see him jailed. This morning the file sharing guru is amongst the most popular people in America, landing him the number two spot on Time.com's top 100 people list.
For those unfamiliar with the Time.com Top 100 list, it is a list in which you cast your vote for the leaders, artists, innovators, icons and heroes that you think are the most influential people in the world. With 108,263 votes, Dotcom is second only to Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi.
Dotcom has been very vocal about his appearance on the list and at one point yesterday he was sitting at the top of the chart and tweeted telling the FBI to "Eat This." I for one am personally a big fan of Dotcom for his innovation on creating Mega, a service I use on a daily basis for image backups and code storage.
Early this morning the city of Yokohama, Japan "accidentally" tweeted that North Korea had launched a missile. The report came by way of their official Twitter account @yokohama_sagai, which has roughly 40,000 followers.
The tweet read North Korea has launched a missile, and was deleted just 20 minutes later. Yokohama officials said that "We had the Tweet ready and waiting, but for an unknown reason it was dispatched erroneously."
This mistake comes just two days after a Taiwan news source mistakenly
reported the death of the Queen of England, reported the death of former UK prime minister Margaret Thatcher and used images of Queen Elizabeth.
This morning a Taiwan news station reported that the Queen of England, Queen Elizabeth, had passed away. However, we are happy to report that the Queen is alive and well. The report headline said (as pictured below): "Queen of England passes away, and we will miss her." It appears that the passing of Margaret Thatcher, the former Prime Minister of England, was confused with the Queen.
Margaret Thatcher served England as prime minister from 1979 until 1990, and holds the title as England's longest serving politician, and nicknamed the "Iron Lady" because of her uncompromising politics and leadership style. As prime minister, she implemented conservative policies that have come to be known as Thatcherism.
While we at TweakTown are sad to hear of Baroness Thatcher's passing, we are happy to report that the Queen is doing just fine. In general I hold all media sources to the highest standards and as a journalist myself, I fact check everything I post before hitting that submit button.
What has Taiwan news media been smoking this morning?
UPDATE: To be clear, there was some confusion to the translation of the headline. Some are stating the Chinese wording translates to "Queen" and others "Prime Minister". The fact remain for sure that the image used is of the Queen of England, and not Margaret Thatcher.
This morning we covered a back and forth between Microsoft's Adam Orth and Xbox fans over Always-on DRM. Orth was quite disrespectful and in my opinion, very unprofessional. This afternoon, Microsoft issued an official apology to Xbox fans over the tirade.
The statement from Microsoft reads:
We apologize for the inappropriate comments made by an employee on Twitter yesterday. This person is not a spokesperson for Microsoft, and his personal views do not reflect the customer-centric approach we take to our products or how we would communicate directly with our loyal consumers. We are very sorry if this offended anyone, however we have not made any announcements about our product road map, and have no further comment on this matter.
It is worth noting that they did make a point to deny any conformation of any form of DRM on the next generation Xbox. While we still believe that the new Xbox will feature Always-on DRM, we understand why Microsoft is reluctant to release any details at this point.
Famed movie critic Roger Ebert has succumb to cancer after a long battle. The Chicago Sun reported today that Roger Ebert passed away after battling thyroid and salivary gland cancer for the better part of a decade. His final blog post, penned Tuesday, alerted readers that his cancer had returned as a result of a hip fracture suffered in December.
The Chicago Sun, the newspaper for which he worked, has written a long piece recapping his life and achievements. It's a long, but good, read and I highly suggest you read it on the Sun's website.
I'm sure our readers will join us in wishing his family the best. He is survived by his wife, a step-daughter and two step-grandchildren. Our thoughts go out to his family.