Gadgets



'Human Fall Flat' lands on iOS and Android June 26th

Human Fall Flat has proven a big hit on consoles and PC, with more than five million copies sold by last February as players hopped into No Brakes Games' hilarity-filled world. It emerged back then that a mobile port was on the way, and now we know you'll be able to play it on Android and iOS starting June 26th. In Human Fall Flat, you take control of a malleable character named Bob, guiding him through a series of physics-based puzzles while his limbs wobble around. Online play adds to

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What’s coming to Netflix in July: ‘Stranger Things' and 'Queer Eye'

There's a good chance you know what's coming to Netflix in July: Stranger Things 3. It's arguably the most anticipated release of the summer, and you won't have to wait much longer -- it arrives on July 4th. Stranger Things 3 certainly isn't all we have to look forward to. This month, Netflix will release the seventh and final season of Orange is the New Black, the recently announced fourth season of Queer Eye and another season of Jerry Seinfeld's Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. I

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Google thwarts shareholder challenge to its China search plans

If investors and employees were hoping to prompt cultural change at Alphabet during the company's shareholder meeting, they were likely disappointed. Voters at the meeting rejected all shareholder proposals, including a resolution that would have required a human rights impact assessment before Google went forward with a censored Chinese search engine. Backers like Azzad Asset Management were concerned China could "weaponize" search data to expand mass surveillance and other human rights abus

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Movie sanitizing service ordered to pay $62 million in piracy suit

A jury has ordered "family-friendly" movie service VidAngel to pay $62.4 million to Hollywood studios for pirating their content. Disney, 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros. sued the company over copyright infringement. VidAngel bought retail DVDs of mainstream movies and ripped the video file. It pulled out adult content, cursing, sex and violent aspects and streamed the films to users. It claimed it was legally allowed to do this under the Family Entertainment And Copyright Act, which legalizes

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Your smart speaker could tell if you're experiencing cardiac arrest

Cardiac arrest frequently happens at home, and victims don't always have someone around to call for help. Your smart speaker might one day fill that role, though. University of Washington researchers have crafted a proof-of-concept AI that can detect the audio cues of cardiac arrest and respond accordingly. The system is trained on 911 call samples to listen for the telltale sounds of agonal breathing (that is, distinctive gasps for air) that come with cardiac arrest. It initially asks for h

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Netflix renews bite-sized sketch comedy show I Think You Should Leave

The show that took the fun out of Instagram captions and charades is getting a second run. Netflix has renewed I Think You Should Leave -- the popular sketch comedy series starring Saturday Night Live alum Tim Robinson -- for a second season. Fans can expect new episodes sometime in 2020. "We are very excited to be working with The Lonely Island, Irony Point, and Netflix to make another season of 'I Think You Should Leave.' We are so thankful we get to do it again," said the show's co-cr

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FTC reportedly investigating YouTube over children's privacy

YouTube may have a particularly strong incentive to change how it handles kids' videos -- it appears to be under government scrutiny for its behavior. Sources for both the New York Times and Washington Post assert that the FTC is in the "late stages" of an investigation into possible violations of kids' privacy. Advocacy groups have reportedly maintained that YouTube is violating COPPA by collecting data for children under the age of 13, including through its dedicated Kids app. The complain

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Google ditches Nest.com in favor of its online store

Google hasn't been shy about phasing out what's left of Nest as an independent entity, and that now includes Nest's website. Droid-Life has noticed that Google has largely gutted Nest.com -- now, it just asks you to visit the Google Store if you're looking for products. You can still sign into your Nest Account, manage your Nest Aware subscriptions and check relevant purchase histories, but product info, shopping and news have all vanished. It's not shocking that Google would do this.

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Microsoft is selling a cut-back 15-inch Surface Book 2 for $1,999

When Microsoft introduced the Surface Book 2 in 2017, it added a 15-inch screen option. While that gave the Macbook Pro some serious competition, it still started at $2,499. Now, Microsoft is offering a 15-inch Surface Book 2 configuration for $1,999 -- a full $500 less than the previous entry point. As you'd expect, the price cut does come with a few trade offs. The $1,999 version has 16GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. It includes a seventh generation Intel Core i5 processor, a step back from

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Microsoft's reworked Edge browser is available to try on Windows 7

Microsoft has expanded the reach of its Chromium-based Edge browser to one of its most important audiences: namely, people who have to (or want to) use older versions of Windows. The company has released Canary channel preview builds of Edge for Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 users. They're rough around the edges like most pre-release software. The feature set will be "largely the same" as you'd get on Windows 10, however, including the upcoming Internet Explorer mode to satisfy busine

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Kano unveils its first build-it-yourself Windows 10 computer

Kano is graduating from Raspberry Pi boards. Today, the company is announcing a partnership with Microsoft and unveiling its first build-it-yourself computer that officially runs Windows 10. The aptly-named Kano PC is housed in a central unit that is visually similar to its 'complete' Computer Kit Touch. All of the components are different, however. The new machine has an 11.6-inch touchscreen with a yet-to-be-disclosed resolution. It's powered by a 1.44 GHz, quad core Intel Atom x5-Z8350 proce

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Apple's Voice Control is important for accessibility, and you

"Open Photos. Scroll up. Show numbers. 13." Over the years, Apple has frequently highlighted its accessibility work in commercials, but the ad that ran for a minute and a half during game 5 of the NBA Finals was particularly powerful. In it, a wheelchair-bound man — Ian Mackay, a disability advocate and outdoor enthusiast — issued the commands above to a waiting iMac. With hardly any delay, the computer did as it was told. Rather than save Mackay a few mouse clicks, the new

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EPA finalizes Trump administrations coal-friendly climate plan

Today, the EPA finalized the Trump administration's Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) plan, effectively rolling back Obama-era policies to address climate change. The Obama administration's Clean Power Plan (CPP) set national goals for reducing carbon dioxide emissions. States could decide how to meet those goals, but the targets were strict enough that many states were expected to close coal plants. As NPR reports, the Trump administration's approach will be to regulate the emissions of individual

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Janet Mock signs historic deal with Netflix

Janet Mock just became the first out black trans woman to land an overall deal with a major studio. The three-year, multimillion dollar deal will allow Mock to create new shows and film projects for the streaming giant. Mock is perhaps best known for the FX show Pose, which she writes for, directs and produces. She will continue working on the show despite her agreement with Netflix. Today, @JanetMock makes history as the first Black trans woman to establish an overall deal with a major

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Twitter removes precise geo-tagging option from tweets

Twitter has announced it will be removing the ability to tag your precise location from tweets. In a tweet from its support account, the company explained that most users didn't use the location-tagging feature and removing it would "simplify" the tweeting experience. The one exception will be tweeted photos from Twitter's updated camera. A Twitter spokesman told Engadget that the change was still gradually rolling out on its platform. The social media platform will still ask for access

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Windows 10 preview links bugs you find to existing feedback

Microsoft is trying to make it easier for users to report bugs. The company has released a Windows 10 Insider Preview with an updated Feedback Hub that lets users find similar complaints. If you've stumbled upon a problem in a pre-release build, you're likely not alone. Instead of writing a completely new piece of feedback from scratch, users can easily link to an existing complaint under "Find Similar Feedback" in the Feedback Hub. It's already possible to find existing complaints with

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YouTube may restrict kids' videos to its dedicated app

YouTube's handling of kids videos has been problematic, to put it mildly, and the company is apparently looking into major changes in policy to prevent further incidents. Wall Street Journal sources understand that YouTube is both considering moving all child-oriented videos to its dedicated Kids app and disabling the autoplay feature on that programming. Both moves could hurt ad revenue, but they'd theoretically steer kids clear of "objectionable" clips. It's uncertain how close YouTu

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European astronauts plan to take pics of a comet from the dawn of time

The European Space Agency (ESA) hopes to photograph a yet-to-be-discovered comet as it approaches Earth's orbit for the first time. To do so, it's developing "Comet Interceptor," a composite made of three individual spacecraft, which will separate to snap photos of the comet from multiple perspectives. The photos will be used to create a 3D model, and ESA hopes to spot material from the dawn of the Solar System. Comet Interceptor is part of ESA's latest fast-class mission, meaning it wil

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Decades of spy satellite images help track melting Himalayan glaciers

You don't need cutting-edge satellite data to make sense of Earth's changing climate. Researchers have published a study of melting Himalayan glaciers that takes advantage of 40 years' worth of satellite imagery posted by the US Geological Survey, including declassified KH-9 Hexagon spy satellite photos from the 1970s and 1980s. The info not only let researchers cover a vast territory (about 650 glaciers over 1,240 miles), but made it possible to automatically create 3D models that reflected

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YouTube and Universal Music Group are remastering old music videos

YouTube is perhaps the single biggest public repository of music videos, but many are bit outdated, with visuals and audio designed for old TVs with single speakers, and others that could use a bit of an upgrade too. Many videos from major artists will soon look and sound much better though, as YouTube and Universal Music Group are remastering almost 1,000 of them "to the highest possible standards." You can check out more than 100 of them today, including from the likes of Boyz II Men,

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Lexus makes camera and radar safety features standard for 2020 cars

You'd think that luxury automakers would load their cars with safety tech by default, but that's not always the case -- it hasn't been for Lexus, anyway. However, the company is making amends for that shortfall. It's making its Safety System+ a standard feature for all its vehicles, starting with the 2020 model year. These camera- and radar-based features aren't particularly new, but some of them have been reserved as options (or for higher-end models) until now. Pre-collision alerts

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Senate panel schedules a hearing on Facebook's cryptocurrency

It didn't even take 48 hours after Facebook announced its cryptocurrency scheme for the government to raise an eyebrow. House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters called for Facebook to halt development, and now the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs has scheduled a hearing to cover both Libra/Calibra and privacy issues. The committee did not list the names of witnesses it plans to call, but Reuters reports that Facebook's blockchain exec David Marcus is ex

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MIT is turning AI into a pizza chef

Never mind having robots deliver pizza -- if MIT and QCRI researchers have their way, the automatons will make your pizza as well. They've developed a neural network, PizzaGAN (Generative Adversarial Network), that learns how to make pizza using pictures. After training on thousands of synthetic and real pizza pictures, the AI knows not only how to identify individual toppings, but how to distinguish their layers and the order in which they need to appear. From there, the system can create s

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The DJ-inspired production platform Serato Studio arrives today

If you're a Serato DJ user with an unfulfilled desire to make beats and missed the beta for the company's new production platform, now's your chance. Today is the official launch of Serato Studio 1.0 and it's in good form following a little feedback from the initial test group. As we mentioned back in March, Serato Studio is an easy entry point into music production for DJs and novices alike. The software ties into existing DJ hardware for those already invested in mixing tunes, letting you man

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The latest version of Monopoly is voice-activated

We've seen a ton of different Monopoly versions over the years, including ones based on Fortnite, Mario Kart and Overwatch. Now, Hasbro is releasing the franchise's take on voice-assisted technology. Seriously. The Monopoly Voice Activated Banking Game turns Mr. Monopoly into a voice assistant, giving him the task of keeping tabs on your money and properties. Yes, Rich Uncle Pennybags speaks and answers your questions in this version of the game through a device shaped like his top hat.

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