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Posts from May, 2015

Apple exec says cars are the ‘ultimate mobile device’

May 31

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An Apple executive believes that cars are the ultimate mobile devices. His statement at a recent conference is only fueling rumors of the tech giant developing an automobile.

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Apple exec says cars are the ‘ultimate mobile device’ originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 28 May 2015 11:02:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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McLaren won’t offer 540C in United States

May 31

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Popular demand determines that McLaren will only offer its new Sports Series in the United States in 570S guise, leaving the (relatively) more accessible 540C to other markets.

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McLaren won’t offer 540C in United States originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 28 May 2015 10:16:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Feds pony up to redevelop historic site for connected cars

May 31

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Federal government commits about $250,000 to convert historic factory site to self-driving technology center.

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Feds pony up to redevelop historic site for connected cars originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 28 May 2015 09:27:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Ground Crew Back In Touch With LightSail Solar Spacecraft

May 31

Yesterday, we noted that the Planetary Society’s solar-sail powered craft had lost radio contact with its controllers here on Earth; Engadget reports that the group has issued an update, and the news is good. From the Society’s release:

“The solar sailing spacecraft test mission, a precursor to a 2016 mission, has now resumed contact after a suspected software glitch affected communications. The LightSail team will soon determine when to attempt deployment of the spacecraft’s Mylar solar sails.”


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Steve Albini: The Music Industry Is a Parasite — and Copyright Is Dead

May 31

journovampire sends word of another thought-provoking rant from Steve Albini (mentioned here last a few years back for his
paean to the beauty of analog tape for recording): The veteran producer addressed an audience in Barcelona on Saturday: “The old copyright model – the person who creates something owns it and anyone else that wants to use it or see it has to pay them – has expired.”


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Google Calendar Ends SMS Notifications

May 31

LuserOnFire writes: Google has sent out an email this morning that says in part: “Starting on June 27th, 2015, SMS notifications from Google Calendar will no longer be sent. SMS notifications launched before smartphones were available. Now, in a world with smartphones and notifications, you can get richer, more reliable experience on your mobile device, even offline.” You can find the announcement on Google’s support pages as well. “Richer” may be accurate, but I’m not sure that “more reliable” describes web-based notifications; that may be why the announcement linked does not apply for Google’s “Work, Education and Government customers.”


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Orange County Public Schools To Monitor Students On Social Media

May 31

The Orlando Sentinel reports that Orange County, Florida, is undertaking a sweeping effort to snoop on the social media communications of the county’s public school students and staff, for the nebulous task of “[ensuring] safe school operations,” and say they will use the software (at a license cost of about $13,000 per year) “to conduct routine monitoring for purposes of prevention or early intervention of potential issues where students or staff could be at risk to themselves or to others.” The software they’re using is from Snaptrends, which offers “location-based social media discovery.” According to one of the comments attached to the linked story, there are monthly fees, in addition to the annual licensing cost.


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Artist Uses 3D Printing To Preserve Artifacts Destroyed By ISIS

May 31

tedlistens writes: “From the burning of the Library of Alexandria to the destruction of the Buddhas of Bamiyan in Afghanistan by the Taliban, to the Nazi’s battle to burn as much “degenerate art” as they could find, mobs and soldiers have been quick to destroy what took societies centuries to create; what museums and collectors spent decades collecting, preserving, and documenting for the public.” However, as noted by Motherboard in an article to which tedlistens links, “The digital era looks different: files can be cheaply hosted in data centers spread across several states or continents to ensure permanence. Morehshin Allahyari, an Iranian born artist, educator, and activist, wants to apply that duplicability to the artifacts that ISIS has destroyed. Now, Allahyari is working on digitally fabricating the sculptures for a series called “Material Speculation” as part of a residency in Autodesk’s Pier 9 program. The first in the series is “Material Speculation: ISIS,” which, through intense research, is modeling and reproducing statues destroyed by ISIS in 2015. Allahyari isn’t just interested in replicating lost objects but making it possible for anyone to do the same: Embedded within each semi-translucent copy is a flash drive with Allahyari’s research about the artifacts, and an online version is coming.


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Ask Slashdot: What Interesting Things Can I Power With an External USB Battery?

May 31

New submitter expert464 writes: I just purchased an external USB battery for the main purpose of charging smartphones. I’ve also thought of using it to power a USB lamp and charge a bluetooth speaker. What other things am I missing that would be useful and/or interesting to power when not near an electrical outlet?


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Can You Commit Copyright Infringement By Using Your Own Work?

May 31

Mrs. Grundy writes: Notorious appropriation artist Richard Prince has been in the news again with his show consisting of screen shots of other people’s Instagram photos printed as large inkjets on canvas. These prints have reportedly sold for $90,000. In 2013 Prince successfully defeated a lawsuit for a previous appropriation by convincing the court his work was ‘transformative’ and it’s likely this new work would also find a sympathetic ear in the court. Among the photographs whose work he used this time were several from the Suicide Girls Instagram feed. In response, Selena Mooney, cofounder of Suicide Girls, began offering exact replicas of Prince’s pieces that used her photographs for a mere $90. Photographer Mark Meyer looks at the bizarre possibility that if Prince’s use of Mooney’s work is transformative and fair, Mooney’s might be copyright infringement.


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