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Posted by on in Slashdot
An anonymous reader writes: A light bulb made from graphene — said by its UK developers to be the first commercially viable consumer product using the super-strong carbon — is to go on sale later this year. The dimmable LED bulb with a graphene-coated filament was designed at Manchester University, where the material was discovered in 2004. It is said to cut energy use by 10% and last longer owing to its conductivity. It is expected to be priced lower than current LED bulbs, which cost about £15 (~$22) each.
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Review

With "Becoming Steve Jobs," coauthors Brent Schlender and Rick Tetzeli seek to dismantle perceptions of Jobs the egomaniacal, callous autocrat, replacing accepted opinion with a retelling of the life of a man who they describe — for better or worse — as being "half genius, half asshole."

image

"Becoming Steve Jobs" is far from being primer on the late Apple cofounder. Background, when it is offered, is scarce and in many cases superficial, produced mainly as expository evidence bolstering the authors' thesis.

That being said, readers who have at least some semblance of Jobs' personal history will greatly appreciate the book's cache of previously unknown details. Indeed, if someone has heard of Jobs, they are also likely to have been exposed to the cliché that he was an impassive, uncaring dictator.

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Angie’s List has joined a growing number of companies to protest a new law in Indiana that critics say could open the door to discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The Indianapolis company said it would put a planned expansion of its campus on hold in the wake of passage of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The business ratings service said it needs to evaluate the implications of the law for its current and future employees.

“Angie’s List is open to all and discriminates against none and we are hugely disappointed in what this bill represents,” Chief Executive Bill Oesterle said in a statement Saturday.

Angie’s List is one of several companies criticizing the new law, which allows companies or individuals to refuse actions that impose a “substantial burden” on their religious beliefs. Thousands of people gathered Saturday to protest the law’s passage.

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It's been over a month since Llama 1 and Llama 2 stole our hearts during a glorious high-speed chase through Sun City, Arizona. Now it looks like the furry celebs — whose names are Kahkneeta and Laney — have had their last taste of sweet, sweet fame. The USDA contacted the llamas' owners soon after the chase, saying they needed a license to showcase the animals at public events, The Guardian reports. And the owners, Bub Bullis and Karen Freund, are not happy about it.

Bye llamas

"They just totally destroyed everything I had planned for my retirement," Freund told The Guardian. "We’ve taken [the llamas] to schools before. Now they’re telling me I can’t do anything, even like a photo shoot."

The USDA requires any warmblooded animals being displayed in public or used in educational presentations to be licensed with the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). Certain animal exhibitors, like those in state fairs or animal preserves, are exempt. Kahkneeta and Laney, however, are not. Bullis and Freund have since attempted to contact the USDA, but because all correspondence must be done in writing, they've given up, The Guardian reports.

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Curb Overspending by Establishing a x201c;No Return Policyx201d;

Generous return policies make shopping easy. After all, if you don't like it, you can return it. That could lead to overspending. If you're prone to this type of thinking, establish a personal "no return policy" to keep your spending in check.

Of course, if your purchase is defective, broken, or doesn't perform properly, return it—no need to be that strict. The goal is to avoid the "eh, I can always return it" attitude—especially if you know you probably won't. You have to be willing to be stuck with an item though before you buy it. This internal policy makes you think hard if you need something now rather than buy-and-return-it-later. Check out the link for other ways stores manipulate our buying behavior.

How to Avoid Impulse Buying: The Deep Down Psychology That Retailers Use Against You, and How to Create a Rock Solid Emotional Fortress Against It | Academy Success

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Pin-Sized Book Reminds Us of Life's Little Pleasures

If you're feeling down, this pin-sized book may be just the thing to cheer you up. Just don't put it in your pocket, or it'll be lost forever.

"Life's Lil Pleasures" was created by illustrator and designer Evan Lorenzen. Lorenzen has spent the last year building a library of "micro books" with diverse themes, including one that details major events in Earth's history, a tiny book of big words, and a field guide to cereal. Armed with nothing but paper, thread, a sewing needle and a pen, Lorenzen says his goal has been to scale down the book-making process as much as he can without using any sort of magnifying instrument.

With Lorenzen's blessing, Gizmodo readers can now enjoy a sneak peek beneath the tiny book's cover. Remember: It's the little things that count, like eating cereal out of your enemy's skull.

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In a bit of accidental perfect timing, Forbes just published its Midas List of top tech investors.

GGV Capital partner Jenny Lee is the first woman to crack its list of Top 10 investors, which is led by such well-known figures as Sequoia Capital’s Jim Goetz, who backed WhatsApp, the mobile messaging company acquired by Facebook for $22 billion, and Lowercase Capital founder Chris Sacca, an early investor in Twitter.

In the wake of the Ellen Pao gender discrimination trial, which shed a harsh light on the clubby world of venture capital, we decided to see how many women made it to the hot 100 of tech investors. The answer? Five (including Lee). That’s worse than the national average of 6 percent of female partners, according to research from Babson College.

Internet trends guru Mary Meeker, a general partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers — the firm at the center of Pao’s  suit — came in at No. 15 on the Forbes’ list. Biotech investor Beth Seidenberg, another partner at Kleiner, also made the cut.

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Turning Styrofoam Into Aluminum is Surprisingly Easy

If you're looking for a fun, high-risk weekend project, look no further: Grant Thompson, the self-styled "King of Random", has decided to shared his method for transforming styrofoam into metal. (Spoiler: don't try this one around your kids.)

To start, you'll need to cut a model of your soon-t0-be metal creation out of foam. Thompson suggests using foam board from the dollar store, but foam housing insulation or craft blocks will work just as well. Once assembled, attach a thick foam riser to the top of your model, and bury it in a 5-gallon bucket filled with sand.

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Maybe not so smart. Sounds kinda blurry, like a Gen I night vision scope. I think I'd wait a little bit to make sure he doesn't grow things in inappropriate places or start photosynthesizing. But they do have the benefit of previous research as some form of chemotherapy so I guess it won't kill you right off.

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Use x201c;Collection Management Policiesx201d; to Curate Your Collectibles

Whether you have a formal collection or just a bunch of things, all that stuff can overwhelm you. Even if you don't have museum quality items, setting some policies might keep it all in check.

Unclutterer explains why you might be able to get rid of a few things if you take a curation approach:

Museums sometimes remove items if they are redundant with others in the collection or if they are "of lesser quality than other objects of the same type in the collection." They may also remove items that are "unduly difficult or impossible to care for or store properly." Items may also get damaged to a degree where they no longer fit within the scope of the collection, and those items would be removed.

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Posted by on in Slashdot

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

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Ellen Pao leaves the courthouse after losing her sexual-discrimination case against Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers. The case wrapped up on a chaotic note as jurors were asked to resume their deliberations after the initial verdict announcement.Ellen Pao leaves the courthouse after losing her sexual-discrimination case against Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers. The case wrapped up on a chaotic note as jurors were asked to resume their deliberations after the initial verdict announcement. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Talk about a cliff-hanger.

The San Francisco Superior Court on Friday turned into a scene that matched anything Hollywood screenwriters could dream up.

And that's just the jury verdict.

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We knew Pebble's recent Kickstarter endeavor was doing well. Earlier this month the Pebble Time became the most successful Kickstarter product ever when it passed the $13.4 million mark. Now, the funding period is over and Pebble Time has raised a total of $20,338,986 from 78,471 backers. The initial goal was $500,000.

A hard record to beat

The original Pebble smartwatch was also launched through Kickstarter in 2012, and it remains the third most-funded project in Kickstarter's history. But because Pebble now has more than 100 employees and almost $26 million in outside funding, the Time's Kickstarter always seemed to be more about hype than money. Almost as soon as it launched, the Pebble Time had already broken a Kickstarter record by surpassing the $1 million mark in just 49 minutes.

So, $20 million isn't really a surprise, but it sure is a lot of money. The watches are scheduled to begin shipping in May.

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Five Years Ago

This week in 2010, as is so often the case, there were lots of stupid and/or troublesome moves in the entertainment world. Hollywood was still making up statistics about piracy for the AP to parrot, Warner Bros. was working on a confusing release strategy that favored Blockbuster Video, Universal Music was funding another propaganda campaign against file sharing, and Sony Music somehow managed to take down Beyonce's official videos for piracy. Viacom's true intent in its YouTube lawsuit became clear — pretending that the DMCA requires filtering — and the band MGMT, following a leak of its album, was blocked by its label from releasing the official version for free. Additionally, FIFA was attacking an airline over an ad that didn't even mention FIFA, and the Olympics was trying to block ICANN from offering a .sports TLD. Amidst all this, we also wondered why the government can use the term "music piracy" in court.

This week also saw the full ACTA draft leaked to the public, raising serious constitutional questions. The UK was still grappling with the Digital Economy Bill, making extremely weak concessions to due process while some noted that it sets up a China-like censorship system. And while pushing for this bill that would enable kicking people offline, the government was also looking at moving all public services online.

Ten Years Ago

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Ellen Pao, right, leaves the courthouse with attorney Therese Lawless after the jury ruled against Pao in a sexual-discrimination suit against storied venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins.Ellen Pao, right, leaves the courthouse with attorney Therese Lawless after the jury ruled against Pao in a sexual-discrimination suit against storied venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

SAN FRANCISCO -- Did Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers retaliate against Ellen Pao when it fired her? Ultimately, a jury said "no."

But it took two rounds of deliberations over two days to come to that decision. A jury of six men and six women returned to San Francisco Superior Court on Friday and by the afternoon was ready to render its verdict. Its initial findings: Ellen Pao had substantially lost her case against the prestigious Silicon Valley venture capital firm.

People in the courtroom audibly gasped, and Kleiner Perkins lawyer Lynne Hermle hugged her team while Pao feverishly took notes.

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Ancient, Predatory

More than 250 million years before the first dinosaur, the most fearsome killers on Earth may have been lobsters. Yawunik kootenayi, a common ancestor to spiders, shrimp and butterflies, was a predatory "lobster-like" creature that ruled the seas half a billion years ago.

As reported this week in the journal Paleontology, fossils of Yawunik were recently unearthed from Marble Canyon, part of the renowned Burgess Shale rock formation of British Columbia. This massive fossil bed holds specimens of many sea creatures that lived during the Cambrian period, the geologic era that saw a rapid diversification of marine life forms.

This particular creature was named after a mythical marine monster that played a central role in the creation story of the Ktunaxa people. The name seems befitting because, according to study co-author Jean-Bernard Carbon, the lobster Yawunik was probably one of the most important predators of its time. "Yawunik is the most abundant of the large new species of the Marble Canyon site, and so, as a predator, it held a key position in the food network and had an important impact on this past ecosystem," Caron said in a statement.

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Posted by on in Techdirt

For this week's awesome stuff, we've got some technology focused on improving your mobile music listening experience in a variety of ways.

MAGZET

For people with Apple laptops, the days of destroying your power cable by tripping on it are over thanks to the MagSafe connector. Unfortunately, the days of destroying your audio jacks and headphone connectors persist, and everyone knows the pain of having to jostle a broken plug around to get its weak connection to kick in. MAGZET aims to fix that by letting you turn any audio jack into a magnetic connector by connecting the small, two-piece device. As they point out, the standard audio jack hasn't been updated in a long time, and this could be just the smart revolution it needs.

UAMP

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Posted by on in Slashdot

They're getting cracked because they're not paying attention to their security.

But start-ups are all about the most buzz you can generate in the shortest time. You need to get that product out the door ASAP because your competitors aren't going to wait for you to build your secure system first. After all, you're not in the business of security, you're in the business of connecting up the most people and building your community./sacasm*

*Added because even I thought I was starting to sound like a lean-startup advocate

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“Is this the trial of the century?” asked Marketplace’s Kai Ryssdal each time I went on his radio show to discuss Ellen Pao’s gender discrimination and retaliation lawsuit against her former employer Kleiner Perkins.

I wasn’t sure how to answer that. In a sense it’s a ridiculous question (no offense to Kai). It is not hard to think of cases that have set more important legal precedents in the fields of both employment and technology. This was a trial at a San Francisco city courthouse. It wasn’t even a federal case.

But then why were Nellie Bowles and I covering it so closely for Re/code?

Ultimately, it’s because the Pao/Kleiner Perkins trial was not setting a legal precedent, but a public discussion precedent. While we didn’t know that would be the case going in, we dug in and committed to daily reports when we realized what was going on.

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Posted by on in Lifehacker

Top 10 Ways to Break Bad Habits

We all have a bad habit or two we could stand to lose, but habits are hard to break. Whether your bad habit is procrastinating, overspending, swearing, or any other one you want to change, here are ten tips to break free of negative behavior patterns.

10. Fine Yourself for Each Offense

Top 10 Ways to Break Bad Habits

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icon-infographics.png

Some of us in life are visual learners and that is why most of use enjoy infographics. You know those cool visually appealing pieces of art work that explain something in an artistically pleasant way.

Well below I have a boatload of links for you to explore. So get exploring and have a great day! ☕

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On the contrary, it is the bank institutions that are the problem, not the individuals that work for them.

Why is a mobster a mobster? Because she believes she is above and beyond the law, by using either violence or criminally obtained money as a lever of influence. How is a bankster like a mobster? Well, she uses other people's money as a lever of influence.

How is a bankster worse than a mobster? Well, she has managed to manipulate the system on such a broad scale, that her usage of other people's money

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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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Feature

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.

image

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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