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Why are some of sci-fi’s beloved female leads deadly, beautiful, and hopelessly naive?

Tron: Legacy’s Quorra and The Fifth Element’s Leeloo have a few things in common, despite their films being separated by 13 years. Both serve as supporting roles to fairly generic heroes; both are fierce and capable in combat; both have haircuts that would make the average person look incredibly stupid; and both are inexplicably wide-eyed about the world. Jonathan McIntosh, who goes by Pop Culture Detective on YouTube, published...
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Samsung will use Google Play Music as the default music app on its devices

Samsung is giving Google Play Music a big push. Today, coinciding with the retail launch of the Galaxy S8, both companies announced that Google’s music app will become the preferred music player on Samsung mobile devices. The partnership kicks off immediately with the S8. But it technically began a year ago; Play Music was also the default music playback app on the Galaxy S7 , a result of Samsung trying to cut down on duplicate apps that cl...
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Apple will stop relying on mining for minerals ‘one day’

Apple is taking steps to end its reliance on mining for the materials that it uses in its devices, becoming the first big tech company to commit to using only recycled metals, rare earths, and other minerals. The company outlined its aim to stop digging up new resources in its latest Environmental Responsibility Report (PDF), released today. In the document, Apple says that it plans to “one day” move to a closed-loop manufacturing system (i...
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Facial recognition is coming to US airports, fast-tracked by Trump

Soon, it may be hard for visa holders to board an international flight without submitting to a facial geometry scan. The TSA began testing facial recognition systems at Dulles Airport in 2015 , then expanded the tests to New York’s JFK Airport last year. Face-reading check-in kiosks will be appearing at Ottawa International Airport this spring, and British Airways is rolling out a similar system at London’s Heathrow Airport , comparing face...
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This color-shifting lizard's skin morphs just as Alan Turing predicted

There’s a particular type of lizard that changes the color of its spots as it ages — and researchers have just discovered the mathematical rules that govern this peculiar metamorphosis. Meet the ocellated lizard , a 30-to-35 inch reptile that lives Europe. These lizards are born with unimpressive brown and white polka dots. But as they grow, they develop this beautiful, labyrinthine green and black pattern across their bodies. We don’t know...
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Here’s the final design for Light’s insane 16-lens camera

The Light L16, a DSLR-quality device that crams 16 cameras into one body, is nearing its ship date and today we’re getting a look at some final production photos, via Petapixel . The 52-megapixel camera looks mostly similar to when we last saw it in 2015 , but it appears the lens moved around a bit to fit in the flash. Unfortunately, the only shots available are of the back and some parts of the side, which now has flatter edges, presumably...
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NBC’s new agreement with affiliates could be a big deal for internet TV services

NBC announced today that it had reached an agreement with its TV affiliate board to allow stations to opt-in to be included in NBC and Universal’s blanket agreements for internet streaming and other “TV Everywhere” distribution rights. While that might not sound like much, it’s actually kind of a big deal that could make it easier to get live NBC streams on services like PlayStation Vue or Sling TV, which currently offer some fairly major l...
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Game of Thrones’ last season will only be six episodes long

Game of Thrones’ eighth and final season will be its shortest yet, with only six episodes, showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss confirmed today. Speaking at SXSW in Austin, Benioff and Weiss said that they were in the process of writing the outline for the show’s final season now, 140 pages that will define how the TV saga of ice and fire will end. “We both wanted to kill Sansa” Weiss joked Speaking about how the writing process breaks d...
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SXSW 2017: all the news, panels, and brand activations

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Are you a spaceflight company? You may want to rethink your logo

Now more than ever, the private spaceflight industry is filled with diverse companies looking to make their mark in the realm of space — either by launching rockets, mining celestial rocks, or building space habitats. But as these companies work to distinguish themselves, there’s one thing that seems to be tying them all together: their branding. A quick glance at the logos of some of the most prominent spaceflight companies, including Spac...
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Twitter’s Android app engineer is leaving for Twitch

The developer of a popular Android Twitter app is leaving the company. After working at the social media site for a year and a half, Joaquim Vergès announced that he is joining game video streaming site Twitch , noting that he’s joining the company’s Android team. @joenrv following my video games passion, I'll be joining the @Twitch Android team on Monday! — Joaquim Vergès ⚡ (@joenrv) March 10, 2017 In 2012, Vergès created Falcon Pro, one o...
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Landmark privacy rules are going to get killed because internet providers asked nicely

Your internet provider can see bits and pieces of almost everything you do online: the sites you visit, the apps you use, the services you connect to. It’s an unpleasant reality for anyone concerned with their privacy, since this information can reveal a whole lot about you. But it’s stayed that way because that’s how internet providers want it — and government regulators feel compelled to listen. At least until last year. While President O...
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The Game of Thrones season seven poster promises ice, fire, and nothing else

In an age of teasers that spoil the entire plot before the movie or show is even out, Game of Thrones’ season seven poster is impressively restrained. Where previous series posters have hinted at a character’s ascension, or promised long-awaited plot points , the newest example tells us only two things — there will be fire, and there will be ice. Feel free to speculate from there about exactly what the union of fire and ice could mean. Does...
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BritBox, a streaming service for British TV from BBC and ITV, launches in the US

BritBox — a new streaming service from the BBC and ITV announced late last year — has officially launched in the US, as noted by Engadget . The service costs $6.99 per month, and claims to offer the “biggest streaming collection of British TV... ever” of shows from two major British broadcasters for American viewers. You’re still out of luck if you’re hoping to watch ‘Doctor Who,’ ‘Top Gear,’ or ‘The Great British Bake Off’ While that may s...
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Latest Samsung Galaxy S8 leak gives us a close look at button changes

Samsung is planning to launch its Galaxy S8 handset on March 29th, but we’ve already seen photos , videos , and even press images leak ahead of its debut. A fresh round of hands-on images have leaked today, and they give us a slightly better look at some big design changes Samsung is making to its 2017 flagship smartphone. Slash Leaks has provided some close up images of the new on-screen home button for the Galaxy S8, and a good idea of ju...
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This fat-loss breathalyzer is now available for $699

LEVL, the device that can tell you how much fat you’re burning by analyzing your breath , is now available to consumers in the Seattle area. The device made its debut way back at CES 2016, and now it’s finally making its way to consumers. The LEVLhome works by detecting the amount of acetone in an exhaled breath, which is an indicator of fat burned, and converting that into a quantifiable number on the companion app. The LEVLhome costs $699...
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What Hugh Jackman leaving the X-Men franchise means for the superhero genre

With Logan hitting theaters today , Hugh Jackman’s 17-year tenure as Wolverine has theoretically come to an end. James Mangold’s film is a brutal, bittersweet send-off for a character (and actor) who’s arguably the lynchpin for the superhero movie genre’s longest-running franchise. Save for 2016’s Deadpool, Jackman has appeared in every single X-Men film to date, plus two of the video games. And more often than not, he’s front and center in...
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Overwatch wins top prize at the Game Developers Choice Awards

Blizzard’s multiplayer shooter Overwatch was the big winner at last night’s Game Developers Choice Awards , taking home the prizes for Best Game and Best Design. Also rewarded were indie studios Campo Santo — whose first game Firewatch won the awards for Best Narrative and Best Debut — and Playdead, who scooped awards for Best Audio and Best Visual Art for unsettling platformer Inside . Last year’s smartphone sensation Pokémon Go won the aw...
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SpaceX Moon mission: the latest news about Elon Musk's plans for a trip around the Moon

by Rachel Becker Feb 28, 2017, 7:00pm EST Image credit: Photo: SpaceX On February 27th, Elon Musk announced SpaceX’s ambitious plan to send two private citizens on a trip around the Moon. The two space tourists have already put down a substantial deposit towards the trip, which Musk says could happen as soon as late 2018. We don’t know how much the mission will cost, or what its prospects are for success. But it could kick off the first pub...
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Samurai Jack returns deeper, darker, and more violent than ever before

Probably no cartoon series today needs and deserves a conclusion more than Samurai Jack. The series, from legendary animator and director Genndy Tartakovsky, ended its run on Cartoon Network back in 2004 with a painfully incomplete story and a legion of diehard fans. The protagonist — a virtuous medieval samurai thrown through time into the far future — was last seen protecting a baby and searching for its lost mother. Yet as the final cred...
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BlackBerry’s new keyboard phone is doomed to be a noble failure

I’ve just returned from BlackBerry’s Mobile World Congress event, where I got to spend some time with the new BlackBerry KeyOne , an Android phone with an obvious difference. The KeyOne is a return to classic BlackBerry form, hitching a full physical keyboard to the bottom of a solidly built, decently specced Android device with a layer of BlackBerry security and apps spread atop Google’s Nougat. I like this phone for daring to be meaningfu...
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One Video: Deadz by Migos feat. 2 Chainz

Every Friday, a slew of new music videos hits the web. Watching them at your desk is not time theft because you deserve it; think of it as a nice reward for surviving another work week. But what if you don’t have time to watch every video — maybe you have a deadline, a hungry pet, or other grown-up concerns. In consideration of your schedule, Lizzie and Kaitlyn present a new series called One Video. Each week we’ll tell you “one video” you ...
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Samsung’s Galaxy S8 will reportedly go on sale April 21st

We’ve had quite a few leaks regarding Samsung’s next flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S8, and now we’ve got our first sniff of a launch date. According to a report from ET News that cites a “high-ranking official for a mobile network provider,” Samsung will put the S8 on sale worldwide on April 21st. This will reportedly follow an unveiling of the phone in New York on March 29th — a date we’ve already seen reported by other sources . If the ...
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Microsoft launches Skype Lite for India

Microsoft has launched Skype Lite , a new version of the video and voice-calling app designed for the Indian market. The download weighs in at 13MB, and the app is designed to work better on 2G or unstable connections, making it more reliable in many parts of India. Microsoft says Skype Lite will consume less battery power and run smoothly even on old Android phones, and there’s a mode that reduces data usage in video calls. The app works w...
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Mall of America wants to sentence a writer to four days of capitalism hell

In the 1996 book Zen in the Art of Writing, science fiction author Ray Bradbury had some advice for would-be authors: “Let the world burn through you. Throw the prism light, white-hot, on paper.” That’s apparently exactly what Mall of America promoters want a writer in residence to do, except that the prism is entirely a promotional one, created and shaped by the mall’s publicists. Also, the writer they hire is meant to sit in the mall in p...
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