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Posted by on in CNET

First 'Spectre' trailer hints at 007's deep, dark secrets

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Fantasy books are full of epic battles like the Battle of Helm’s Deep from Lord of the Rings. And for most fans just reading about such battles is enough, but some fans go further, enlisting in the military in order to live out real-life adventures. One of them is Weston Ochse, a thirty-year military vet who still works with the military, traveling regularly to warzones in countries like Afghanistan. He traces his yearning for adventure back to reading The Hobbit as a child.

“That desire was definitely inculcated by the idea that one lone hobbit can make a difference,” Ochse says in Episode 143 of the Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. “And if one lone hobbit can make a difference, then this poor guy from Tennessee can make a difference too. So absolutely it was inspirational.”

GeeksGuide Podcast

Ochse now draws on his military experience to write his own fantasy novels, such as the SEAL Team 666 series, which is currently in development at MGM, with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson attached to star.

Another fantasy author who is also a military vet is Myke Cole, author of the Shadow Ops series. As a child he was a “scrawny nerd,” and he credits fantasy novels and Dungeons & Dragons with inspiring him to become a warrior.

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If the Internet taught us one thing this week it’s that it pays to think about domain registrations in advance. Also, if you say or something stupid on the Internet, everyone will be ready to tell you about it. (But if you don’t know that what are you even doing here?) In a week where the world ended for One Directioners and censorship was defeated (well, almost), here is the pick of what you might have missed happening on the wacky world wide web.

Zayn Ruins the World

What Happened: Zayn Malik has left One Direction. It’s possible that that sentence might not have made any sense to you, in which case you should read on.

Where It Blew Up: Twitter, blogs, media think pieces

What Really Happened: For a large part of the Internet, the biggest news story of the week was Zayn Malik leaving One Direction, a decision that he’s since explained was down to his need to regain control of his life. The resulting wave of emotion flooding the Internet was so overwhelming some news organizations sought to contextualize it for older readers, or even try to explain why social media has changed fans’ interaction with pop music as a whole. There were even YouTube supercuts made up of fans’ responses (see above).

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Posted by on in CNET

Do you prefer modern muscle, or something more classic? Fast & Furious 7

Dennis McCarthy has one of those professions that many would classify as a dream job. McCarthy is car coordinator for the "Fast & Furious" films. Basically, he's the guy who spends his days buying, modifying and testing the amazing pieces of machinery that are, in many ways, the real stars of the high-octane franchise.

This will be McCarthy's fourth film in the series, since signing on to wrangle cars for 2006's "The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift." That film required a spread of tasty imports, cars not available here in the US. His solution? Hop on a plane -- and bring the corporate card.

"The original intent was to film the movie 80 percent in Japan, 20 percent in LA. When we got to Japan we realized there were too many restrictions. So, a friend of mine and I went to Japan and went on a three-week shopping trip."

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Operation_Arcana_FinalThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." alt="image" /> Baen Books

The below story, “Rules of Enchantment,” appears in Operation Arcana, a new anthology of military fantasy I edited. It was released March 3 by Baen Books.

‘Rules of Enchantment’

by David Klecha and Tobias S. Buckell

You’d think arrows are pretty silent compared to gunfire, but there’s no mistaking that bristly whistle as it whips through the air just past your head before it thwacks into someone’s Kevlar. Everyone eats dirt, and you’re checking your ammo with your back against a tree trunk wondering how the wood elves flanked you when you realize how stupid a question that is: this is their territory.

You’re new to the squad, so you’re still nervous. Every crack in the brush and shaken leaf has you jumpy. We’ve all been teasing you. Rookie this and rookie that.

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To pursue its continuing obsession with thinness, Apple has gone to extraordinary lengths with the keyboard on the new 12-inch MacBook, redesigning it in a way that is thoroughly distinct from its Macbook Air and MacBook Pro stablemates.


According to Apple, the the new MacBook's key assembly is about 40 percent thinner than previous designs and was necessary to keep the entire machine under 0.52 inches thick at its deepest point.

Executing such a radical design with traditional scissor-switch keys would have cause keycaps to wobble and bottom out without registering a stroke, so Apple introduced something called the "butterfly" mechanism.

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Anne Thwacks writes The British Government web site for applying for for a licence to be a security guard requires a plugin providing Internet Explorer emulation on Firefox to login and apply for a licence. It won't work with Firefox without the add-on, but it also wont work with Internet Explorer! (I tried Win XP and Win7 Professional). The error message says "You have more than one browser window open on the same internet connection," (I didn't) and "to avoid this problem, close your browser and reopen it." I did. No change.

I tried three different computers, with three different OSes. Still no change. I contacted their tech support and they said "Yes ... a lot of users complain about this. We have known about it since September, and are working on a fix! Meanwhile, we have instructions on how to use the "Fire IE" plugin to get round the problem." Eventually, I got this to work on Win7pro. (The plugin will not work on Linux). The instructions require a very old version of the plugin, and a bit of trial and error is needed to get it to work with the current one. How can a government department concerned with security not get this sort of thing right?"

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Portray as a nut? He IS a nut.

He had the gall to question Obama's citizenship (born in Hawaii to an American woman and Kenyan father), when Cruz was born in Canada (to an American woman) and has a Cuban father.

But now it's crazy to question his ability to run for the presidency because his mother was American, ya know just like Obama which he claimed meant Obama didn't meet the requirements because the birth certificate is a forgery and he was actually born in Indonesia, a foreign country, just like Canada.

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It doesn't happen often, but a judge has called out police officers for using a non-existent offense -- "contempt of cop" -- to justify the use of force against a detained person. Multnomah County (OR) Judge Diana Stewart cleared 16-year-old Portland resident Thai Gurule of several charges brought against him after he was pummeled and tased by police officers for… well, basically for responding angrily to a somewhat derogatory gesture.

Police that night had been looking for a group of seven to nine African American men, including one shirtless one, who had been walking the streets, reportedly damaging property and yelling profanities. Within minutes of receiving the group's last known location, police several blocks away focused their attention on a group of three young men: Gurule, his 20-year-old brother and their friend.
That was the narrative up to the point where Thai Gurule found himself on the receiving end of fists and Tasers. Ignoring the fact that this group had little in common with the suspects other than race, we come to what turned this incident into a confrontation and, finally, a one-side melee.

The following comes from the judge's statement on the dismissal of charges:

As the youth walked past, Officer Hughes said, "Hey" to the youth and when the youth continued, he again said, "Hey" and clapped his hands.

Thai Gurule turned to face Officer Hughes and in an angry or aggressive voice said "Don't fucking clap your hands at me". Officer Hughes stepped forward while the youth stepped back.

Cue escalation. The officers decided to cuff Gurule (for "resisting arrest," apparently). As a crowd began to gather, the officers decided to move Gurule into a prone position for cuffing, supposedly for officer safety. But rather than let Gurule move to a prone position, one of the officers decided to speed up the process by sweeping Gurule's feet out from underneath him. From that point, it became an uncontrolled beating. One officer held Gurule by the hair while the other two wrestled him to the ground and hit him multiple times with their fists and knees. Finding the one-sided "struggle" to be ineffective, Sgt. Lile deployed his Taser.

After they were done throwing blows, the officers threw the book at Thai Gurule, listing all of the following charges on the police report:

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Alien Nation, the 1988 buddy cop / sci-fi mashup, is getting a remake, The Hollywood Reporter reports. While the original movie centered around the first police officer from an alien race, the Fox reimagining will reportedly explain how and why the aliens came to Earth in the first place.

Art Marcum and Matt Holloway, the writing team behind the first Iron Man movie, are set to write the screenplay. Beyond that, no other casting or release details are known, but THR suggests the movie will draw inspiration from the studio's Planet of the Apes remake.

Mandy Patinkin played the original alien officer, while James Caan was his disgruntled human partner. We're hoping some cameos are in the cards, at least.

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Apple employees march in San Francisco's Gay Pride Parade in this photo posted to Twitter by CEO Tim Cook last June. Cook and other tech execs are angry about a law passed in Indiana that critics say is discriminatory.Apple employees march in San Francisco's Gay Pride Parade in this photo posted to Twitter by CEO Tim Cook last June. Cook and other tech execs are angry about a law passed in Indiana that critics say is discriminatory.Screenshot by CNET

Tech heavyweights including Apple CEO Tim Cook are pressuring the state of Indiana over a new "religious freedom" law critics say will be used to discriminate against gays and others.

Cook sent a tweet Friday saying Apple, one of the world's most successful companies and most popular brands, is "deeply disappointed" about the legislation. And Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.com, a major purveyor of corporate software and services, tweeted that the company would "dramatically reduce" its investments in the state. A Salesforce subsidiary employs from 2,000 to 3,000 people in Indiana, Benioff told tech site Recode, and also hosts a major customer event there that last year brought about $8 million in spending to the state.

The legislation in question, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, was signed into law Thursday by Indiana Gov. Mike Pence. It declares that an action by state or local government may not "substantially burden a person's right to the exercise of religion" unless it's shown that the action is "essential to further a compelling governmental interest" and is the "least restrictive means" of doing so.

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Defendant Kleiner Perkins emerged victorious today after being battered by a month-long trial, with a jury finding against Ellen Pao on every one of her claims of gender discrimination and retaliation.

In a case that has captivated audiences well beyond the tech industry, Pao filed suit in 2012 against the storied Silicon Valley venture capital firm, where she had been a junior partner. Had the jury found in her favor, she could have won as much as $160 million. Through 24 grueling days in a downtown San Francisco courthouse, she exposed stories of all-male company ski trips and sexual harassment of another partner at the firm.

She also brought up smaller slights: double standards in how aggressive women are allowed to be and how their success in investments translates into promotions.

Kleiner Perkins came back with a brutal, and ultimately successful, attack on her performance and personality, which they said was just not right for “Team KP.”

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Bear witness to the genesis of a new era, fellow sports fans. I've begged and pleaded in the past for the major professional sports leagues to take the harness off of the ability to stream games. Even as the trend of cord-cutting has progressed along nicely, I have always argued that the only dam keeping a flood of cord-cutters at bay has been professional sports broadcast deals. Those deals have almost universally been saddled with local blackout restrictions, making streaming games all but useless for the majority of fans. The past few years, however, have seen inched progress towards wider availabitily for streamed offerings. The NBA's most recent contract went out of its way to make sure streaming is expanded, for instance, not to mention the deal Dish and ESPN made to make the cable channel's broadcasts more accessible for streaming. But those were baby steps, too often leashed by a cable subscription requirement.

But, now, the NFL is finally dipping its toe in the streaming waters. Please understand that, even if this is just another inch gained for streaming, this is a huge deal.

On Monday, the NFL announced the Oct. 25 regular season game between Jacksonville and Buffalo will be put up for bid on national digital platforms. The game is being played in London, meaning the broadcast will begin at 9:30 a.m. ET and 6:30 PT. That's not exactly prime time for U.S. fans, or broadcast television, but it is 'prime time' in China, where the NFL is struggling to gain a toehold.

"It's a one game test. We will evaluate fan feedback," NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said via an email exchange. "It's too early to tell about the future [of streaming games]. Will test this season with the one game and evaluate after."

Separately, the NFL said it's going to drop its so-called blackout rule, which prevents local broadcasts of games if they're not sold out 72 hours before kickoff. NFL media executive Brian Rolapp said the league is "testing alternative ways to distribute games," The NYT reports, and acknowledged the obvious: "The world is changing very quickly."

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Like many people in our industry, I’ve closely followed the Ellen Pao v. Kleiner Perkins gender discrimination lawsuit. I have been a Silicon Valley entrepreneur for more than 30 years and have considerable experience working in startups, including one financed by Kleiner Perkins. I have seen and worked with many venture capitalists.

I don’t recognize the place that has been described in the courtroom.

From the testimony at trial, and from the coverage in the media, you would think that Silicon Valley is a hotbed of sexism and discrimination. You would get the impression that women cannot get ahead because they are deliberately and repeatedly denied opportunities. You might picture our offices and boardrooms as football locker rooms, with pin-ups everywhere.

One reason I decided to come West and join the burgeoning technology revolution in 1981 was my belief that wherever there was fast growth, there would be opportunities for anybody who could contribute to that growth. That is exactly what I found.

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Thousands of Uber users account credentials could have been compromised, and are up for sale from unscrupulous sellers. At least two separate vendors on dark web marketplace AlphaBay are hawking active Uber accounts, Motherboard reports. Once purchased, these accounts let buyers order up rides using whatever payment information is on file. Those accounts can also show trip history, email addresses, phone numbers, and location information for people's home and work addresses.

People's stolen Uber accounts cost less than a mile in an actual Uber

The sellers are offering up the accounts for $1 and $5 apiece, which incidentally won't even get you a mile in an Uber car in New York City. However those with these stolen logins could theoretically use them to order up free rides until Uber, payment companies, or their real owners realize what's happened. One of the two sellers Motherboard talked to says he or she has already sold more than 100 accounts to other buyers.

An Uber spokesperson told Motherboard that an investigation was underway, adding that it monitors its services for fraud. “We are looking into this and do not have any information to share at this time," an Uber spokesperson said. "We use state of the art technology to prevent, detect, and investigate fraud. It’s important to note that attempting this type of fraud is illegal, and we take appropriate action when we confirm fraud, including notifying the proper authorities.”

Its currently unclear how these sellers acquired the account credentials, if there might be other sellers using the same information, or whether this stems from a larger security breach at the company. News of the accounts for sale comes just weeks after Uber disclosed that information about some 50,000 of its drivers had been accessed by a third-party last May. In its notice, Uber said the breach did not affect user names, suggesting this is unrelated.

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The revelation that Germanwings Flight 9525 may have been intentionally brought down by a suicidal pilot raises the troubling question of what a man mentally ill enough to kill himself and 149 other people was doing flying an airliner.

Investigators still have many questions about just what caused the Airbus A320 to crash into a mountainside in the French Alps on Tuesday, but the the focus is squarely on pilot Adreas Lubitz. And it shows that even the most strenuous screening and training procedures cannot guarantee a mentally or emotionally troubled person does not step into the cockpit.

And it also suggests that, as rigorous as those procedures are, more could be done.

In the US, airlines subject pilots to physical examinations and background checks when they are hired, and the FAA requires annual medical certifications. But those focus on physical issues, not mental. “There’s no formal psychological testing that is done routinely.” says Dr. James Vanderploeg, who performs FAA examinations as part of his practice.

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An anonymous reader writes A small portable media device, costing roughly $50, is allowing North Koreans to access and view foreign media despite tight government censorship, according to a Reuters report. The 'Notel', a mashup of notebook and television, is being described as a symbol of change in the repressed society. Used to watch DVDs and shared content from USB sticks and SD cards, the media player can be easily concealed and transported among families and friends. According to correspondents in the region, as many as half of all urban North Korean households have a notel and are swapping a broad range of banned media such as soaps and TV dramas from South Korea and China, Hollywood blockbusters, and news clips — all of which is strictly forbidden by Pyongyang law.
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Spectre posterDaniel Craig's 007 outfit mines the past. MGM

The first teaser trailer for the new James Bond film "Spectre" has arrived and it's surprisingly low-key. There are no explosions, car chases, train chases, motorcycle chases or foot chases on offer. It only hints at violence, culminating in a single gunshot at the end.

The trailer carries a dark, ominous feeling throughout, but gives very little away. Assuming you skipped reading the leaked "Spectre" script from the 2014 Sony hack, most of what we know about the new film can be boiled down to this summary from 007.com: "In SPECTRE, a cryptic message from Bond's past sends him on a trail to uncover a sinister organisation. While M battles political forces to keep the secret service alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the terrible truth behind SPECTRE."

Spectre is a familiar name to Bond fans. It stands for "Special Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion" and represents a global organization of criminals and terrorists featured prominently in Ian Fleming's James Bond novels, as well as earlier Bond films.

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Google offered a more complete defense of its lobbying efforts Friday in response to a Wall Street Journal story earlier this week that suggested the search giant’s lobbyists seem to be practically living at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

In a GIF-y post entitled “Really, Rupert?” Google offered up a point-by-point repudiation of the Journal story, which showed how an awful lot of Googlers were visiting the White House as the FTC was investigating the company for allegedly anticompetitive practices. Its conclusion:

google baby GIF

Google didn’t even link to the Journal story in its GIF-y reply (burn!).

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Posted by on in Techdirt
People eat all kinds of different things in different parts of the world. Some countries have well-known traditional meals and menu items, and foodies all over the internet are posting pictures of what they're eating all the time. Food-obsessed folks seem to like to capture snapshots of food -- both good and bad -- for fun and commentary. Here are some global food snapshots for you to look over that might not be all that appetizing. Military food rations from different countries have surprising variety. There are some similarities, such as: chocolate, isotonic drinks, muesli, pâté, coffee, chewing gum and disinfectant wipes. [url] Kids all over the world are posting pictures of their school lunches on the internet. However, some of the photos that are supposed to represent a country's school lunch program aren't very accurate -- and it's fascinating to see some comparisons of what could be served and what actually is. [url] Oxfam reports that the Netherlands is the easiest country in the world for getting a balanced, nutritious diet. The US and Japan tied for a spot in 21st place, and Canada landed at 25th. Obviously, the global food distribution system could use some improvements since there's enough food for everyone, but obesity and starvation still exist. [url] If you'd like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.
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Posted by on in Gizmodo

The Best of Gizmodo This Week

Our favorite posts on Giz this week cover everything from the surprising history of brands to the human lab rats researching nootropics on Reddit. We fucked around with some gadgets, baked a laptop in the oven, and paid a drunk guy to evaluate our web design. Then we swung a hatchet around. Enjoy!

The Best of Gizmodo This Week

Ennion made me. Those were the words molded on glass vases and jars that survived centuries of dust, change, and trauma all over the classical world. But who was Ennion? And how, in the early years of the world, did his glassware become so famous?

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The Best Single-Purpose Web Sites That Do Exactly What They Say They Do

Kids these days have the most convoluted web site names. Facebook? Twitter? eBay? I'm sorry, but I like my coffee black and my web sites self-explanatory. Here's a handful of actually useful web sites that do exactly what they sound like.

Blast from the past is a weekly feature at Lifehacker in which we revive old, but still relevant, posts for your reading and hacking pleasure. This week, we're taking a stroll down memory lane through some of our favorite self-explanatory web sites.

Down For Everyone or Just Me (pictured above): If you're getting an error when visiting a certain site, it could be down—or something could be wrong on your end. To see which it is, head to Downforeveryoneorjustme.com and type in the web site's domain. It'll let you know if it's actually down or whether you need to do a little more troubleshooting. You can head there quicker by typing in isup.me.

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Let's all be honest: the new James Bond film Spectre is proving to be one of the needier movies in recent memory. That's no small feat considering we live in a world where teaser trailers, and teasers for teaser trailers, and Vine teasers for the teasing of trailers is actually, you know, a thing. But to its credit, Spectre has managed to take the crown, besting all others in its never-ending hunt for attention. (Personally, I think it won with the teaser for the teaser poster — when the teaser poster ended up just being a picture of Daniel Craig. You know, the guy that we've already seen play Bond. In three separate movies.)

Still, here we are, and now it's time for Spectre to unveil the requisite teaser trailer. The funny thing? It's actually cool! It's full of foreboding without giving anything away, and makes me want to see James Bond do James Bondian things! And apparently he'll have plenty of opportunity, because according to the official synopsis for the movie "a cryptic message from Bond’s past sends him on a trail to uncover a sinister organization. While M battles political forces to keep the secret service alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the terrible truth behind Spectre."

At this point the movie still has the promise and intrigue of surprises to come

That sounds cool, right? At this stage, we're excited! We can't wait to see what happens next! The movie has the thrill of being full of surprises and intrigue and things we're not expecting (and it's even directed by Sam Mendes, who did a pretty great job with Skyfall). But there's the rub: By the time Spectre actually comes out on November 6th, odds are most of it will be spoiled. Like we've seen happen time and time and time again. Because when movies want people to really, really like them, they tend to show everything cool that they've got in store before you even have the chance to walk in the theater.

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The first teaser trailer for the new James Bond movie, Spectre, raises more questions than it answers. What's the secret that James Bond won't share with anyone, because he won't trust anyone? And why is James Bond venturing into the shadowy world of secret organizations?

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The New Perfect Balance for Your MetroCard Is $27.25

Last year, Ben Wellington from data analysis blog I Quant NY found the perfect amount to add to your MetroCard so you can get an exact number of rides and you're never missing a train because you're a few cents short. Now with the new fare increase, the new perfect balances are $22.30 or $27.25, and there's even a quick-buy button.

The old perfect amounts to add to your MetroCard were $11.90 for exactly five rides, $19.05 for exactly eight rides, and $30.95 for exactly 13 rides. Why those numbers? The whole system is confusing because you get bonus amounts added to your card depending on how much you pay, and the system was designed to be cash and change friendly. According to Wellington, the only perfect amounts you can choose now with the Other Amounts button is $22.30 for exactly nine rides and $27.25 for exactly 11 rides. Everything else will leave you with a practically useless remainder on your card.

Fortunately, the MTA has added a button to the main purchase screen that offers the perfect $27.25 option, as well as created a MetroCard Calculator if you want to check your math. Whether you live in NYC or just plan on visiting, this information can keep you from missing your train and wasting time. You can learn more about Wellington's analysis at the link below.

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I can't honestly claim to know a whole lot about e-cigarettes. That's because when I was still smoking, I smoked the old fashioned kind of cigarettes. You know, the ones made from tobacco, that cured acne, and that made my breath smell as cool and fabulous as a pub toilet. Plus, everyone was doing it and my lungs weren't going to give themselves cancer, so you know. But, even knowing little about e-cigarettes, I know enough to know that they aren't ale houses located in Riverdale, New Jersey. This is a conclusion that the lawyers over at Lorillard, makers of "blu" e-cigarettes, think is likely to escape the larger population, as they have decided to file a trademark dispute against Blu Alehouse over its name and logo.

The lawsuit filed by Lorillard Technologies Inc. centers on a logo that NJ Ale House LLC is using at its Blu Alehouse in Riverdale, N.J., Law360 reported. According to the news website, the logo features "the word 'blu' surrounded by smoke or flames." The subsidiary of Greensboro-based Lorillard (NYSE: LO) claims that the logo is too much like the branding for blu eCigs.
Let's leave everything else aside for a moment and simply take a look at the two logos to see if they look substantially similar on their own. First is the logo of Blu Alehouse. Note that this logo normally appears alongside the full name of the establishment.
And now the logo for blu Cigarettes.
Neither logo is particularly complicated, but even failing to correct for the simplicity of the designs, the two logos are distinctly different. If both logos didn't incorporate the word "blu" in them, there would be absolutely nothing to argue about here. And, again, that's strictly taking the logos into account with no other context. Because once we use the likelihood of customer confusion and the markets of competition tests, I'm failing to see how this wasn't tossed immediately upon a judge's review. An ale house isn't competing with cigarettes in any way. Add to that that it would be quite difficult for even the most moronic and hurried citizens to mistake the two companies for each other, what with the ale house's logo typically appearing alongside other signage that identifies itself as an ale house.

Strangely, an actual judge reviewing the claim thought differently.

U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty found that Lorillard — along with another subsidiary, LOEC Inc. — made "plausible claims for trademark infringement and unfair competition," and he ruled that the case could go on, Law360 reported.
How is the claim of unfair competition even possible? The two companies aren't competing with each other at all. The only mention of competition in the court filing by Lorillard is over the fact that sometimes they advertise their cigarettes at drinking establishments.
LTI and LOEC allege that Blu Alehouse bar and restaurant is directed at a similar consumer base as LTI and LOEC's BLU products because BLU products are promoted at bars, restaurants, and lounges.
But that doesn't actually put the companies in competition with one another. That would be like Budweiser claiming that Big Buds Magazine, here to serve all of your marijuana information needs, infringed on Budweiser marks because they occasionally sell beer to high people. Why should that matter at all?

Hopefully as this case moves forward, a more sensible conclusion is reached.

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Well, that’s a one-two punch for the Wii U: Nintendo said today that its highly anticipated new Legend of Zelda game won’t make its planned 2015 release date, and in case that wasn’t enough, the game won’t even be shown at this year’s E3 Expo in June.

Zelda was set to be the tentpole release for the beleaguered Wii U console this year, so its loss is a pretty massive blow to Nintendo’s holiday lineup. Then again, if you didn’t see this one coming a mile away, you haven’t been paying attention: Nintendo regularly delays its games, especially when said game is a new entry in the Zelda series. (I laid down my marker on this the minute Nintendo announced the game’s release date, by the way.)

And this one in particular is maybe the most ambitious Zelda game the team’s ever done, since it’s the first to take place in a massive open world. The chances that Nintendo would either run into development snags—or simply discover new ideas that they want to implement—were very high.

That seems to have been the case, at least in part: Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma said, in a video update announcing the delay, that “as the team has experienced firsthand the freedom of exploration that hasn’t existed in any Zelda game to date, we have discovered several new possibilities for the game.” Implementing those, he said, is the reason for the delay.

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Expedition 43 has successfully left the Earth. NASA astronaut Scott Kelly and Russian cosmonauts Mikhail Kornienko and Gennady Padalka are on their way to the International Space Station, and each one of them is embarking on a record-setting journey.

Kelly and Kornienko's 340-day stay will be the longest amount of time anyone has spent aboard the ISS, breaking the previous record of seven months set back in 2007. And when Kelly lands in March of next year, he will have spent a total of 522 days in space throughout his career — a new NASA record.

Padalka will break the all-time record for total time spent in space

The world (or, more accurately, off-world) record for total days in space is is held by Sergei Krikalev, who has spent more than 800 in orbit over the course of six different missions. That record won't last long — Padalka's stay will push him well past Krikalev's record by the time he lands in September. The year-long stay will be a first on the ISS, but four other cosmonauts have completed off-planet missions lasting longer than a year; those took place in the 1980s and 1990s aboard the Mir space station.

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Intel, the world’s largest chip maker, is in talks to acquire Silicon Valley chip builder Altera, according to a report from the The Wall Street Journal. And if such a deal goes through, it would be Intel’s largest takeover ever.

The Journal‘s story is thin on specifics. It doesn’t cite a specific source, and it says the talks are nowhere near complete. “Terms of the potential deal and its timing couldn’t be learned, and it is possible there ultimately won’t be one,” the paper reports. But the acquisition makes a lot of sense for Intel. Altera isn’t a big name, but it builds chips that represent the future of the massive data centers that power the internet.

“I am absolutely not surprised,” Jason Mars, a professor of computer science at the University of Michigan whose research focuses on hardware used in the modern data center, says of the rumored deal.

Altera builds what are called FPGAs, or field programmable gate arrays. These are chips you can program to perform very specific tasks, and they don’t require as much power or as much space as the chips that traditionally have powered our internet services. They’s why Microsoft used them to help power Bing. People like Mars believe these chips could help power a wide range of services, including the new breed of artificially intelligent services, such as Apple Siri and Microsoft Cortana.

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In a video posted to Facebook, Nintendo's producer for The Legend of Zelda has announced that contrary to what we all expected, the Wii U version of the game won't make it out in 2015. "We are not longer making a 2015 release our number one priority," Eiji Aonuma said. The game is designed to take Link into a more open world, and apparently the team creating the game needs more time to create that world.

Saying that "we have discovered several new possibilities for this game," Aonuma says the team wants to explore them and create something even better. Rather than fit a schedule, the team wants to create the right game. Sure, okay, that's as it should be, but it's also a huge bummer.

First a live-action Zelda TV series for Netflix was teased, and then cruelly ripped away from us (despite our expert casting suggestions).

Now this.

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