Author Archives: Chris Davies

Writing for R3 Media since 2006, Chris Davies is currently executive editor for SlashGear and Android Community. Based in San Francisco, he's responsible for SlashGear's editorial decisions and covers all forms of consumer technology. You can follow him on Twitter.

Panasonic gets up to speed on curved car touch-dash tech

Panasonic gets up to speed on curved car touch-dash tech

Your next car could have a sweeping, touch-sensitive dashboard if Panasonic has its way, with the company green-lighting production of a curved touch panel. Set to begin rolling off production lines in September, the capacitive panels support multitouch just like many infotainment displays already in use in various cars, but can also be shaped into curves and waves rather than just flat slabs.

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This wasp turns spiders into zombie builders (then eats them)

This wasp turns spiders into zombie builders (then eats them)

Scheming wasps that ride spiders like horses, turn them into zombies, and then program them to weave stronger webs than normal sounds like science fiction. Unfortunately for the Cyclosa argenteoalba spider, though, it's ghoulish fact, and researchers have discovered that the ichneumon wasps that enslave them are even more controlling than previously thought.

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Lexus schemes second luxe flagship and no-haggle sales

Lexus schemes second luxe flagship and no-haggle sales

Lexus will unveil a second flagship luxury car in January, the company has teased, while it explores with no-haggle pricing in its showrooms. The new high-end model will sit alongside - rather than replace - the Lexus LS sedan, and seems unlikely to be a four-door going by comments from one company exec. Meanwhile, a more stress-free experience in select Lexus dealerships is promised, as the company explores ways to boost sales.

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Apple has new iOS 9 and watchOS 2.0 betas for you

Apple has new iOS 9 and watchOS 2.0 betas for you

Apple has released iOS 9 beta 5 for iPhone and iPad, as well as watchOS 2 beta 5 for Apple Watch, as it nears the final versions this fall. The new software, which requires either an Apple developer account or beta program membership in order to access, paves the way for features like WiFi Calling on the iPhone across more carriers, as well as smarter switching of WiFi and cellular data for faster browsing, while on the smartwatch there's a new Time-Lapse face among other tweaks.

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Russia blamed in Pentagon cyber-attack

Russia blamed in Pentagon cyber-attack

A Russian cyber-attack in July saw the Pentagon pull the plug on the entire unsecured email and internet system for the Joint Staff, it's been revealed. Described as a "sophisticated cyber intrusion", the incident saw email accounts of around 4,000 military and civilian personnel who work for the Joint Chiefs of Staff compromised, though officials aren't decided yet on whether it was sanctioned by the Russian government or the handiwork of an independent player.

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Sorry France, Google says “non” on privacy demands

Sorry France, Google says “non” on privacy demands

Google has rejected France's calls for the "right to be forgotten" program to be applied worldwide, risking the wrath of the European Union in the process. The French data protection regulator, CNIL, had issued Google with a formal notice in June demanding that any links ousted from Google's European search sites under the program should also be delisted from indexes globally. That, Google argues, is a path with potentially dangerous implications.

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HERE’s talking traffic could stop you getting rear-ended

HERE’s talking traffic could stop you getting rear-ended

Stomping on your brakes in panic at the sight of a sudden sea of brake lights ahead could be a thing of the past, if HERE has its way. The company, recently acquired by a consortium including Daimler, BMW, and Audi, has been working on real-time traffic pattern spotting, in the hope of identifying unexpected slow-downs or traffic jams so as to warn drivers to ease off the speed before it's too late.

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Black hole fountains shepherd new galaxies into life

Black hole fountains shepherd new galaxies into life

A black-hole fountain might sound like something from science fiction, but NASA believes it's actually part of a high-energy cycle by which galaxies coalesce. Combining high-resolution Hubble Space Telescope imagery with ground-based captures, scientists were able to observe knots of hot, blue stars that were forming along the jets from active black holes, with a thunderstorm of heated and cooling gases through giant elliptical galaxies.

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Tesla’s “solid metal snake” robo-charger is terrifying

Tesla’s “solid metal snake” robo-charger is terrifying

Elon Musk promised us a "solid metal snake" to automatically plug in your Tesla, and the outspoken engineer hasn't failed to deliver. A brief video of the sinuously wavering auto-charger was revealed today, showing the prototype robot coiling down and jabbing into the waiting charging port of a red Tesla Model S. According to Musk's previous promises, the charger is designed to work not only with the current Model S, but upcoming cars like the Model X and Model 3.

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Samsung pulls plug on secret tablet TV controller

Samsung pulls plug on secret tablet TV controller

A Samsung scheme to oust the traditional TV remote with a dedicated media tablet has been axed, insiders claim, scuppered over content rights and in-fighting. Samsung Perfect Experience, or "PX" as it was apparently known in internal shorthand, was initially intended to be a key feature of the company's 2015 TV line-up. However, the skunkworks-style project built in no small part on former Boxee talent was shuttered amidst delays.

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Audi prices up its 2016 A3 e-tron hybrid for US drivers

Audi prices up its 2016 A3 e-tron hybrid for US drivers

Audi has priced up the 2016 A3 Sportback e-tron for the US, its first - but, if all goes to plan, not last - electrified car for American drivers. The hybrid hatchback pairs a 1.4-liter TFSI engine with a plug-in electric drive system, and will show up in dealerships from October. Audi is, unsurprisingly, pitching it above a Prius or a Volt, however, with the A3 e-tron starting out at $37,900 before federal tax credits.

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