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Current Affairs Posts - Page 33

RandomTT: Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, make surprise cameo on a Chinese police video

Bit of a random post this morning, with rumors of Facebook entering China finally, and in the spirit of China, Mark Zuckerberg with wife in tow, have made a surprise appearance in a documentary about China's Police force, which aired on broadcast channel CCTV.

 

 

The video shows Zuckerberg and his wife as bystanders for just a second (at 0:29) and is ironic considering Facebook is blocked in China. The couple visited the country in March, which is probably when this clip was filmed.

 

Personally, I don't think it's an 'appearance', or 'features' Zuckerberg, but it almost looks like they accidentally caught him on camera. He seems like he's in mid-power walk mode, or he just has a very energetic walk. It doesn't seem pre-scripted, or as though he's on a set, or aware he's being recorded.

Continue reading 'RandomTT: Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, make surprise cameo on a Chinese police video' (full post)

Romney uses targeted Google ads to counter Obama's Barnard commencement speech

President Obama has used technology to his advantage. Technology most likely won him the election in 2008 as he was able to reach out to the young, hip crowd through this new medium. His opponents, apparently, aren't as far behind as everyone thought as Romney's campaign has bought targeted ads to counter Obama's Barnard Collage commencement address.

 

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People who search Google for "barnard commencement" will end up seeing an ad like above if they live in the New York City. The ad links to Romney's website and is entitled "Obama's Wasteful Spending." The ads are targeted to the zip code where the college is located. This zip code happens to be 10027.

 

The 2012 presidential campaign has seen targeted advertising before, so this is just another example. Previous advertisements have been as narrowly focused as this in that they focused on a single zip code. While I'm not sure just how many people are going to see it, it seems like it could be a good way to take a bit of press away from Obama and the event.

Counting Crows releases album through BitTorrent in advance of a concert tour

In a move quite contrary to current trends, Counting Crows has released an album using the BitTorrent protocol to spread the music for free. Both the band and label have approved this new move, which comes in advance of a new concert tour the band is about to embark on. "I don't know why everybody's not doing it," said Counting Crows lead singer Adam Duritz.

 

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Torrents allow musicians to get more exposure. Sure they don't sell as many albums, at least not right away, but they get more exposure and people talking about them. This conversation, in turn, yields higher ticket sales to concerts and events. Once a band starts selling out where they are playing, they often get to move to a bigger arena or charge more for tickets. Either way, they make more money.

 

Of course, it is important to note that P2P BitTorrent traffic is usually illegal as it consists of copyrighted files. As such TweakTown does not condone or encourage this. However, in this instance, it is legal to download Counting Crows' release as they have released it to be free to share. Duritz said: "We're trying to create a business model for a business that hasn't existed yet: Independent bands doing well. For a new band, I highly recommend giving away the whole record."

11-year-old boy urinates all over $36,000 worth of MacBooks

While this isn't the best-flavored news, it's something worth covering. Have you ever asked yourself, if you were to pee all over your MacBook, would Apple's AppleCare warranty cover it? Could one even pay Apple to service the machines once they had been marked as your territory?

 

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No. Definitely not. Apple sees peed-on MacBooks as a biohazard. Well, it has happened. An 11-year-old has unleashed the power of his bladder upon a Pennsylvanian school's cart full of MacBooks worth over $36,000. PennLive reports:

 

An 11-year-old boy urinated on several MacBook computers on a cart in the Upper Allen Elementary School Wednesday, damaging them beyond repair, according to Upper Allen Twp. police.

 

The loss came to more than $36,000, police said.

 

Police charged the boy with institutional vandalism and criminal mischief and are turning him over to the Cumberland County Juvenile Probation Department.

 

The reason it's considered a full loss, is because they can't just be wiped down and turned on. AppleCare won't touch them because they deem them a biohazard. Animal or human, the pee is considered pee and pee is considered a biohazard.

The coolest clock ever: The German, handmade Qlocktwo

This has got to be the coolest clock that has ever been designed. I've seen pictures of this clock floating around the internet for a while now, but was always unable to figure out the name of it or who makes it. I have finally completed this quest, and now present to you the Qlocktwo. This is handmade by Biegert & Funk in Schwäbisch Gmünd, Germany.

 

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A description of the clock by the manufacturer:

 

QLOCKTWO® makes you stop and look at time in a different way. The typographical display combines the moment with the written word and turns it into a statement. "It is half past nine."

 

The reduced square shape is restricted to the essentials and time is displayed by means of a square grid of letters. These characters light up in pure white to form words which describe the time. The 45 x 45 cm clock, made of wood with multiple coats of paint, can be used as a wall clock or as a free-standing object.

 

The front panel of the QLOCKTWO® is fixed by magnets. In this way it can be changed without visible means of attachment. Brushed stainless steel or polished synthetic glass in seven colours are available.

 

It's slightly more money that I would like to spend. The original Qlocktwo costs $1,100 and is 17"x17". The Qlocktwo Touch costs only $599 and is 13"x13". I imagine that one of these could be made at home using an Arduino and it is a project that I am tempted to uptake. If you were wondering what to get me for Christmas, this is it.

Moore's Law will collapse, in about 10 years

Michio Kaku, a theoretical physicist has posted a video discussing the collapse of Moore's Law in around 10 or so years. It has been predicted before, with physicists predicting the end of Moore's Law for quite a while now, but Kaku's reasoning and the slowing down of processing power that we are seeing today definitely lends credibility to his claims.

 

 

If you're unaware of Moore's Law, it pertains to computer hardware, stating that the number of transistors that can be placed onto a integrated circuit board can be doubled roughly every two years. There's always been an 18-month time frame for this, where we see a leap of the previous-generation of technology. This modified cycle can be credited to Intel executive, David House, not Moore.

 

Kaku has predicted that in around 10 years, silicon power will be exhausted. Intel has already admitted Moore's Law is slowing down using silicon, one of the reasons behind us seeing Tri-Gate transistors used in Ivy Bridge CPUs, an effort to try and extend the effective life of silicon. Kaku attributes the problem as two-fold: heat and leakage. Intel processors of today have a layer that is almost down to 20 atoms across. Quite small.

Continue reading 'Moore's Law will collapse, in about 10 years' (full post)

Support Huntington's Disease research and enter a raffle for a custom computer

Today has been a 'Friday Feel Good Day.' As reported earlier, TigerDirect teamed up with a Corsair and EVGA to make that computer that is being auctioned off on eBay. It's not the only charity build that's currently going on. Custom Case Modder Will Lyon has built a cool "Arctic Cat" themed case that he is now selling raffle tickets for. The proceeds from the raffle ticket sales go to support Huntington's Disease.

 

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As originally posted by Will Lyon:

 

Help support a great cause and get a chance to win this custom rig built buy me. This rig includes lots of time and parts graciously donated by many great people and great companies! Huntington's Disease is a (currently) incurable and debilitating genetic disorder. You can help the HDSA to further their research and try to find a treatment or cure for this horrible disease. I personally am also giving away myr Arctic Cat computer to one lucky person who donates! All donations received will go go to the Huntington's Disease Society of America. The funds will enable the HDSA to continue their ongoing efforts to find a treatment or even a cure for Huntington's Disease. Just like with any other disease-related research they need all the help they can get! Me wife's best friend's mother died from Huntington's....[/quote]

Continue reading 'Support Huntington's Disease research and enter a raffle for a custom computer' (full post)

TigerDirect partners with companies to build PC to auction and benefit the National MS Society

It's nice when companies do things that benefit the community at large. This time it is TigerDirect's turn to do something for the greater good. They have partnered with Corsair Memory and EVGA to build a killer gaming PC which is currently being auctioned off at eBay. 100% of the proceeds from the auction will be donated to the MS Society to continue driving the fight against Multiple Sclerosis.

 

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It's for a good cause, and it's a pretty amazing computer. I highly encourage you to take a look at it and throw in a bid. The auction is available here.

Continue reading 'TigerDirect partners with companies to build PC to auction and benefit the National MS Society' (full post)

Building turned Tetris in case of hack as high art

Those damn college kids are always doing some prank or another, and this time they have done something really cool that isn't destructive! The kids over at MIT, one of the leading technology colleges in the United States, have turned an entire building's windows into a playable Tetris game with different colors and difficulty levels!

 

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Was this some mischievousness plan to take over the college or just some work of public art? The building in question is the Earth and Planetary Science departments' building. It has long been the target of many of MIT students' pranks. The grid layout of the windows made this building the best choice for this particular prank.

 

The video is pretty awesome. As a fan of Tetris, I'm tempted to see about doing this at my house. Better yet, if I ever get a big corporation in NY, I'm going to specifically design the side of the building as a giant Tetris game. Then everyone will want to come work for me! What are your thoughts? Good prank or no?

Continue reading 'Building turned Tetris in case of hack as high art' (full post)

Navizon releases new tech that can track you by your smartphone's wireless

Yet another assault on users' privacy has occurred today. Navizon I.T.S. (Indoor Triangulation System) is a system similar to what Google is using for indoor navigation at large venues. It, however, locates you for the owners of the establishment, rather than you locating yourself for directions.

 

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Aimed at retail stores, shopping malls, museums, office buildings, and similar spots, the technology can be used for a couple of different purposes. One way is to use it as a security and surveillance system, as it could track approved Wi-Fi devices in a secure area or locate wireless devices on a campus.

 

Another way that it can be used is to study traffic patterns in certain areas or just generally see how many smartphone users there are at a given trade show. These ways are a bit less intrusive than using it for security, but it still raises concerns. Think about all of the pressure Apple and Google have gotten over WiFi geolocation.

 

Luckily, the system can't identify who you are. Rather, it can only get the signature of your device. It could, however, keep track of that signature and use it to track you every time you come back and then start to look for patterns. This is just one more way that smartphone users can be tracked, and many of these ways are without our knowledge.

Continue reading 'Navizon releases new tech that can track you by your smartphone's wireless' (full post)

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