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Current Affairs Posts - Page 18

Amazon looking to take on Apple for coolest campus ever, plans rainforest bio-dome in downtown Seattle

Apple may be practicing "forward looking" with its spaceship like campus in Cupertino, but Amazon is looking to take things in a very different approach to a green headquarters. Yesterday while everyone was focused on Redmond, a proposal was being reviewed by Seattle's Design Review Board.

 

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Amazon has tweaked plans for its new headquarters that will be built-in the inner city of Seattle. The proposed three block campus is codenamed Rufus 2.0, and will feature a huge tri-sphere bio-dome like greenhouse environment. I have included the PDF file of the proposal at Source #3 below.

 

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Amazon says that the "plant-rich environment has many positive qualities that are not often found in a typical office setting." Featuring five levels, the bio-dome feature work spaces, dining, meeting and lounge spaces, and even a pair of shops serving the general public. A wealth of trees and plants are also present to keep things nice and "Amazon" like.

Continue reading 'Amazon looking to take on Apple for coolest campus ever, plans rainforest bio-dome in downtown Seattle' (full post)

Burj Al Arab hotel in Dubai offering gold-plated iPads for guest use

The world's only seven-star hotel has started offering 24-carat gold-plated iPads to guests for use. While this is certainly overkill and completely unneeded, it is most definitely cool and adds to the luxury feel of the device and hotel.

 

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The iPads will be used as a virtual concierge and provide information on restaurants in the hotel, spa treatments, and butler services. The iPads feature the hotel's logo on the back and likely feel great to the touch. The hotel will also be selling the iPads in the hotel's boutique.

Foxconn continues to break Chinese labor laws says FLA

A new audit published by the Fair Labor Association shows that Hon Hai, AKA Foxconn, is still continuing to break Chinese labor laws. The report finds that while Foxconn has complied with 98.3 percent of the new rules Apple and the FLA agreed to, the company is still forcing workers past the 40 hour work week plus 36 hours overtime per month limit imposed by the Chinese government.

 

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The audit which took place in January found that Foxconn employees were regularly working as many as 70 hours per week which drastically pushed them over the monthly overtime limit. This also breaks Apples imposed restrictions on its manufacturing partners which state that no employee is allowed to work over 60 hours per week. Coincidentally the weeks in which the massive overages took place coincided with the launch of Apple's iPhone 5.

Man flies drone over neighbor's property, appears to have been spying in 3rd-story window

It's often said that laws can't keep up with modern technology. Interestingly enough, this phrase has been used a lot lately in conjunction with drones, specifically in regards to whether or not they should be allowed to fly over US soil. The US government apparently isn't the only interested group in using drones.

 

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A resident in Seattle, WA tells CHS:

This afternoon, a stranger set an aerial drone into flight over my yard and beside my house near Miller Playfield. I initially mistook its noisy buzzing for a weed-whacker on this warm spring day. After several minutes, I looked out my third-story window to see a drone hovering a few feet away. My husband went to talk to the man on the sidewalk outside our home who was operating the drone with a remote control, to ask him to not fly his drone near our home. The man insisted that it is legal for him to fly an aerial drone over our yard and adjacent to our windows. He noted that the drone has a camera, which transmits images he viewed through a set of glasses. He purported to be doing "research". We are extremely concerned, as he could very easily be a criminal who plans to break into our house or a peeping-tom.

 

This issue brings with it various legal questions. For instance, the Supreme Court ruled in 1946 that "the air is a public highway." But just how low does this public highway extend? Would a person be able to put a camera on a pole and get away with the same thing?

Continue reading 'Man flies drone over neighbor's property, appears to have been spying in 3rd-story window' (full post)

Charity auction for coffee with Tim Cook currently at $605,000

Who would have thought a charity auction for coffee with Apple CEO Tim Cook would be worth so much. After all, the purchaser is only guaranteed 30 minutes, though it could end up being as long as 60. In fact, coffee with Tim Cook appears set to pass the previous charity auction record set by the auctioning off of a 2013 Lamborghini Aventador.

 

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CharityBuzz CEO Coppy Holzman:

Charitybuzz is blown away by the incredible support we've seen for the RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights through our coffee with Tim Cook online auction. With 140 experiences on the auction block closing this Tuesday to benefit the RFK Center, including exclusive access to Robert DeNiro, Alec Baldwin, Peyton Manning and more, we expect to raise well over one million dollars for human rights.

 

Doing some quick math, that works out to over $10,000 per minute, if Tim Cook is able to stay for the full 60 minutes. You would have to have some deep pockets in order to afford this and it's not exactly clear what you would do with the time. Look for a job? Pick his brain? If you have the money, you'll need to bid at least $610,000 by 4:08p.m. tomorrow.

Disney jumps on 3-D printing bandwagon, offers to print 3-D Storm Trooper with your face

3-D printing has been making headlines the past few years and Disney is ready to jump on the bandwagon. They've announced that they will be hosting several Star Wars weekends at their Hollywood Studios. For $99.95 plus tax and shipping, you can have your face 3-D printed onto a Storm Trooper, just what any Star Wars fan would want.

 

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The 10-minute experience uses the world's highest-resolution, single-shot 3D face scanner created by our Imagineering scientists with Disney Research labs. That captured image is later sent to a high resolution 3D printer to create the figurine. The completed figurine will arrive within 7-8 weeks after the experience if shipping domestically (it takes a little longer if shipping internationally). Guests will also receive either a Carbon-Freeze Me light-up band or a collector button depending upon which option they choose. The Star Wars - D-Tech Me experience is $99.95, plus shipping and applicable sales tax.

 

The experience is available over several weekends: May 17-19, May 24-26, May 31-June 2, and June 7-9. Customers will also have the option of being frozen in Carbonite, an option that was provided last year during Disney's Star Wars Weekends. For more information, check out Disney's announcement.

The White House's Twitter account tweets 'unless you're a Native American, you came from someplace else'

Someone has taken to The White House's Twitter account, tweeting "Unless you're a Native American, you came from someplace else". This of course, has offended many, with a stream of users attacking @whitehouse with tweets.

 

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You can read some of the replies to @whitehouse here, but it is definitely a weirdly worded tweet. If you're aware of the show 'Veep' on HBO, I'[img]sure they're running into damage control right now and I was right, as there is another tweet, which said "we are a nation of immigrants".

Acer launches new global advertising campaign featuring DJ Tiesto

At this morning's launch event, Acer announced that it was teaming up with world famous DJ Tiesto and his personal assistant Vernon. This new campaign is a continuation of the 2012 campaign starring Kiefer Sutherland and Megan Fox in which they use Acer products to explore beyond limits and to uncover a different side of themselves.

 

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The campaign focuses on Tiesto's personal assistant, Vernon. We follow Vernon, who's using the new Aspire P3 Ultrabook to do both his day job and to follow his hidden passion of becoming a DJ. His newfound Djing skills come in handy when he has to come to Tiesto's rescue when a live gig temporarily goes wrong. You can check the full advert on Acer's YouTube channel. As of this writing, the video is set to private, though.

 

Michael Birkin, Chief Marketing Officer at Acer, commented:

 

"For us, advertising is a way to complement our products with a great story that reflects what people love about them: the new experiences they make possible. After last year's campaign we were convinced we were headed in the right direction and we wanted to expand on our storytelling approach. So we've gone a bit further this time, giving the Aspire P3 the starring role in a deeper story that encourages people to 'explore beyond limits' and gives them some new ways to interact with us."

Functional Apple 1 computer signed by Steve Wozinak to be put on auction, get your checkbooks ready!

One of an estimated six working Apple 1 computers will be going up for auction at the German auction house Breker. This rare PC, signed by Steve Wozinak himself, is expected to bring in between $240,000 and $400,000 at auction. And you thought your new iPhone was overpriced!

 

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The Apple 1 was originally released back in 1976. Only 200 were produced and somewhere between 30 and 50 are still in existence, though as mentioned above, only six are believed to be working. Apple 1's have a history of fetching large sums of money, regardless of whether or not they are working.

 

Back in December, a working Apple 1 sold for $640,000. Before that, a non-working Apple 1 went to auction with an estimated value of $125,000. Finally, before that, an Apple 1 sold for $375,000.

The Pirate Party now has three seats in Icelandic parliament

We all knew that good things were on the horizon when Iceland opened its arms and welcomed The Pirate Bay to its shores. This morning we are hearing word that The Pirate Party in Iceland has now surpassed the number of votes needed for it to gain a real seat in Iceland's parliament.

 

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The Pirate Party has managed to nab three of the 63 total seats in Iceland's parliament, including one held by the party's leader Birgitta Jonsdottir. This puts the Icelandic Pirate Party ahead of its Swedish comrades.

 

While three seats in Iceland and two in Sweden may not sound like much, it will help some come the 2014 elections when Pirate Parties all over the EU push for a larger influence in world governments.

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