Author Archives: Brittany Hillen


Amazon to make original series based on Galaxy Quest

Amazon to make original series based on Galaxy Quest

The 1999 movie Galaxy Quest will be returning as an Amazon original series, it has been announced. The movie featured Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Tony Shalhoub and other well known celebrities, and centered around a group of actors who end up sucked into a real-life science fiction adventure. The show's premise is one that will work well for an episodic series, and the movie's sustained fanbase makes this a solid move on Amazon's part.

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NYC’s taxis now have their own Uber-like app

NYC’s taxis now have their own Uber-like app

For all of its yelling and battling, the taxi industry has not been able to squash Uber, and consumers are better off for it. In NYC, the taxi industry now has its own Uber-like mobile app called Arro, and as with Uber, consumers can use it to see where nearby cabs are located, hail one using the app, see the driver’s details, and pay their fare using saved banking information. The makers of the app hail their offering as being superior to Uber’s own app, though, and the taxi industry — not surprisingly — is saying it is better in every way: cheaper, faster, and more. The app will be available to the public in the next couple of weeks.

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Facebook details new effort to stop video piracy

Facebook details new effort to stop video piracy

Facebook is ramping up its video efforts, and part of any effort is adequate management — in the case of videos, it’s rights management. Today in a statement, the social network said that some of its content partners have complained of third-party users swiping their videos and uploading them without permission, among other things. This has prompted Facebook to take a look at its rights management for videos and ways it can be improved. That work has been ongoing, and leads to today’s statement: the social network says that it has established the foundation of that rights management, and it’ll be using audio fingerprinting to help put the squeeze on unauthorized video uploading, as well as video matching technology and more.

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Chewbacca Crocs unveiled ahead of new Star Wars movie

Chewbacca Crocs unveiled ahead of new Star Wars movie

Items modeled after Star Wars characters are nothing new, and we've seen the number of gadgets grow as the next movie's premiere grows nearer (not that there was ever a shortage of such items). The newest one to surface is a bit of a misstep, though, at least if your fashion sense has reached the adult level: Chewbacca-themed Crocs. Yes, Crocs still exist, and these ones are toeing the line crossed by fuzzy Ugg boots, only with a side order of spongy and hole-filled foam.

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Pew report: Americans frown upon phone use in social settings

Pew report: Americans frown upon phone use in social settings

The widespread presence of mobile devices, namely smartphones, have brought about new issues in regards to etiquette, and though over the years a general shape about proper usage has formed, many still bicker about what is appropriate and what isn’t. Pew Research recently surveyed a bunch of Americans to find out their opinions on smartphone usage in public, and found that while most people are fine with phones being used when a person is in public, only a small percentage think it is okay to use the phone during a social gathering, whether you’re at the restaurant or just talking to someone.

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North Korea tries to entice tourists with “Internet Room”

North Korea tries to entice tourists with “Internet Room”

North Korea, threats of war aside, is trying to entice more tourists to its little nation via a new “Internet Room” at the world’s worst airline. The little facility in Pyongyang International airport, however, has one big problem: despite being an Internet room, it does not in fact have Internet access, at least according to reports coming from the nation. The nation’s residents are, at the most, given access only to North Korea’s very limited intranet. Tourists have a little bit more freedom.

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Harman AKG N60 NC luxury headphones feature real leather

Harman AKG N60 NC luxury headphones feature real leather

Harman has introduced a new pair of on-ear wireless noise-canceling headphones, the AKG N60 NC. The maker describes these as an ultra compact pair of headphones suitable for traveling, among other things, whether by train, bus or airplane. Aside from being small enough to fit in your bag, the headphones feature what is promised to be a luxurious design, including a headband that is made with real leather and ear cups made of aluminum paired with memory foam.

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Archos Diamond Tab 7.9″ Lollipop tablet launches in October

Archos Diamond Tab 7.9″ Lollipop tablet launches in October

Archos has introduced its new Diamond Tab tablet, the first octa-core tablet it offers with 4G LTE connectivity. As far as specs go, they’re decidedly mid-tier, and in line with the related £179 price tag. The tablet won’t be available until October, but we’ve all the details on what you can expect now. Among it all is a 1.7GHz octa-core Mediatek MT8752, giving it enough oomph to run more demanding apps, including games. The display is on the smaller side at 7.9 inches.

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Kick-Varibike has you pedal with arms instead of legs

Kick-Varibike has you pedal with arms instead of legs

Kick-Varibike is a bicycle like no other -- in fact, it is more akin to a giant scooter than anything else (a "kickbike"), but with the addition of pedals placed near the handle bars, which also makes it a hand bike. You can ride it like a scooter if that's your preference, pushing off the ground with your foot to propel it forward; or, you can pedal with your arms and build some upper body strength while traveling around. The model managed to catch the public eye at Eurobike 2015 recently.

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SoundCloud faces lawsuit over alleged failure to pay royalties

SoundCloud faces lawsuit over alleged failure to pay royalties

Contentions regarding SoundCloud and the payment of royalties has been long-running, and now the audio streaming service is facing a lawsuit from Performing Rights Society for Music, more commonly referred to as PRS. The entity advised its members recently that it has sought for SoundCloud to “recognize their responsibilities” repeatedly; PRS states SoundCloud requires a license to operate in Europe and the United Kingdom. PRS went further and issued a press statement advising that it has “no choice” in the matter, and that after a half a decade of failed negotiations, it must proceed with a lawsuit.

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Evernote Food support ends on September 30

Evernote Food support ends on September 30

A couple of years ago, Evernote introduced a new product aimed at the cooks among its user base: Evernote Food. This allows people to do things like take pictures of the meals they cook and others, clip recipes, and more. By all accounts, Evernote Food has been popular, but it has also become redundant. As any Evernote user would know, you can do those aforementioned things with the service’s non-Food offerings, and that’s why the company has announced it is dropping support for the Evernote Food iOS and Android apps.

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Adobe says stop using ‘Photoshop’ as a generic term

Adobe says stop using ‘Photoshop’ as a generic term

When a company’s product so thoroughly corners a market that it becomes well-known even by those who have never used it, the company faces a problem: generic use of that product’s name. You’re likely to hear the term “dumpster” used generically, for example, as it is now a genericized trademark due to its common usage. Other trademarks have suffered the same fate — yo-yo, for example, and aspirin. Adobe doesn’t want its popular photo-editing software Photoshop to suffer the same fate, but it may be too late to stop it.

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