Author Archives: Chris Burns

Chris Burns is currently head editor for SlashGear and executive editor for Android Community. Based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Chris Burns responsible for editorial decisions made for the USA-based day-team of SlashGear and sister-site Android Community. Follow him on Twitter @ t_chrisburns and inside Google+ at http://chrisburns.co/+ for tech, gadget, and design news galore.

Google’s View-Master: here’s how it works

Google’s View-Master: here’s how it works

Believe it or not, you won't actually need a View-Master to view the content Google is presenting this week. The View-Master device is just a box with a magnetic switch - just like Google Cardboard. To "view" a View-Master reel - like the "reels" you remember from the original View-Master, you'll need only your smartphone. To view these reels correctly, you'll need a Google Cardboard headset - and that doesn't need to be manufactured by Mattel. The View-Master headset just makes everything easier to understand visually.

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Tim Cook talks security, Apple Pay hits national parks

Tim Cook talks security, Apple Pay hits national parks

According to Tim Cook, Apple has been working with the United States government to get Apple Pay working in national parks across the nation. Starting in September, you'll be able to work with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus to pay your way in to national parks - and probably pay for hotdogs, too. News of this update comes from Tim Cook speaking at a White House Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection. This should go a long way to proving to companies of all sorts that Apple Pay is here to stay.

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Google Helpouts shutdown scheduled for April 20th

Google Helpouts shutdown scheduled for April 20th

In a few short weeks, the system known as Google Helpouts will be shut down indefinitely. Users who have used Google Helpouts in the past - who've contributed lots of content - will be able to save their work starting on the 20th of April as well. According to Google, "the Helpouts community includes some engaged and loyal contributors, but unfortunately, it hasn't grown at the pace we had expected." Because of the pace of growth, Google has decided to shut down the system from top to bottom.

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Nintendo 3DS XL 2015 teardown: inside the tiny computer

Nintendo 3DS XL 2015 teardown: inside the tiny computer

There's really nothing too next-level about this little gaming machine - unless you consider all of its processing power and super-refined hardware. "If you think about it," says iFixit, "the newest of the new Nintendo 3DS XL is basically a small laptop." With a 3D screen, of course, as well as a triple-camera setup, CPU, RAM, Flash, and the ability to run high-powered software. That's a general way of looking at it - but it's true, isn't it? Let's have a peek inside.

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Panasonic Toughbook 54 officially “semi-rugged”

Panasonic Toughbook 54 officially “semi-rugged”

It's time to bring heat to the "semi-rugged" laptop environment with the Panasonic Toughbook 54. So suggests Panasonic this week as they unveil this laptop that they also suggest is the thinnest and lightest in its class. This machine works with a 5th-gen Intel Core i5 vPro professor, a battery that they say will last 11 hours, and the option for a replaceable battery that'll last 18 hours. This Toughbook 54 laptop is made for mobile workers - people in the field with construction, field service, utilities, and video production.

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CyanogenMod jabs at OnePlus OS closed-source OS

CyanogenMod jabs at OnePlus OS closed-source OS

The official OxygenOS for OnePlus "won't be a community build, it will be a real OS." So says OnePlus ROM team member Helen, an official member of said team. In return, the Android community has been none too kind to the creators of said operating system and said hardware. Cyanogenmod's own Steve Kondik suggested the following: "you can love CM or you can hate us, but we have no plans of taking our toys and going home." This is OnePlus after Cyanogenmod - and it's none too pretty.

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198 whales swim ashore in New Zealand

198 whales swim ashore in New Zealand

No, they weren't coming ashore to take the Hobbiton tour. On New Zealand's South Island on Friday, nearly 200 pilot whales beached themselves - most likely on accident. Scientists are speculating that these whales may have been in an area where their built-in sonar abilities were messed with, leading them to swim up and over the area they'd normally be comfortable in. These whales can't, after all, survive on the shore for extended periods of time. They breath oxygen, but they still need to be wet.

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Kanye West “YEEZY BOOST” sneakers released in technical video

Kanye West “YEEZY BOOST” sneakers released in technical video

If you though a pair of sneakers could never warrant a nationwide live video event hosted by an international pop star, you were wrong. Kanye West has just run an event just like that - with live feeds being sent to theaters in several cities across the United States. And the subject matter - they're not embedded with Bluetooth, nor are they able to check your steps. They are, on the other hand, designed by and endorsed by Kanye West himself. For many consumers, that's more than enough reason to want a pair or two or three.

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New Megadrought may be worst in 1000 years

New Megadrought may be worst in 1000 years

If you're living in the West, you may want to start thinking about conserving your water. A group of scientists from NASA, Columbia University, and Cornell University have published a paper in Science Advances which suggests a 35-year drought - or "megadrought," as they call it - will be hitting the Southwest and central Great Plains in the near future. This will happen, they say, if we stay on our current trajectory of greenhouse gas emissions. If emissions continue as they are, there's an 80% chance, this team says, that we'll hit at least one "decades-long" megadrought between the years 2050 and 2100.

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Behold, Furbacca: the Furby Chewbacca

Behold, Furbacca: the Furby Chewbacca

The very first licensed Furby toy in the history of Hasbro's Furby lineup is, appropriately, from Star Wars. Furbacca, he's called, and he's part of Hasbro's return to the market with the Furby brand. Chewbacca's visage might be slightly less recognizable than your average licensed Star Wars collectible or toy - coming with the standard yellow beak of the Furby rather than his own furry set of chompers. Is this a one-off, or is this the start of something great for Hasbro's strange, speaking electronic friend collection?

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