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Submission + - RIP Alan Rickman, AKA Hans Gruber, Severus Snape

TigerPlish writes: Variety reports Rickman died after a short bout of cancer, and was surrounded by friends and family when he went.

While some may question how is this News for Nerds, I'm of the opinion that Harry Potter was, is, and will always be a nerd favorite.

Submission + - Allstate patents physiological data collection 1

TigerPlish writes: According to the Chicago Tribune, Allstate has been granted a patent — no. US 20140080100 A1 — that covers a "driving-behavior database that it said might be useful for health insurers, lenders, credit-rating agencies, marketers and potential employers."

The article continues, "...the invention has the potential to evaluate drivers' physiological data, including heart rate, blood pressure and electrocardiogram signals, which could be recorded from steering wheel sensors."

Imagine a world where you are denied employment or credit based on the information obtained from your car and sold by your insurer. Imagine a world where your insurer predicts how you may act or react in the future. Imagine your personal physiological information in Allstate's hands.

Good hands, indeed, right? What could possibly go wrong?

Submission + - AT&T rolls out iPhone Wireless Emergency Alerts 1

TigerPlish writes: AT&T has rolled out Wireless Emergency Alerts for iPhones, as this article explains.

The alerts are for huge catastrophes (a Presidential Alert), then for weather / natural calamities, and one for AMBER alerts. One can turn off the latter, but the Presidential alert cannot be turned off.

The article mentions only 4S and 5 get this update. That said, I have a 4 and it got the update this morning.

This was enacted in 2006, for those keeping track of such things.

I, for one, do not care for this any more than I like the idea of them reading my communications to begin with. Oh, I'm sorry, the "metadata" from my communications.

Submission + - TomTom LIVE devices useless during Rush Hours

TigerPlish writes: In certain high-density areas of the USA, such as Boston, New York City, South Florida (Broward and Dade Counties), TomTom LIVE traffic data fails to load in a reasonable time during the rush hours. Sometimes it loads in 10 minutes, sometimes in 20, and very often, never. This negates whatever benefits LIVE traffic data promised.

There's a long-running thread thread in the TomTom discussion forums dealing with the US LIVE issues.

The UK has its own set of issues, seen in this thread.

Given the goals stated in their Traffic Manifesto one would've expected a rapid fix to the problems. However, the issues persist.
Politics

Submission + - Romney exibited bullying / abusive behavior, WP article says (washingtonpost.com)

TigerPlish writes: An investigative piece in the Washington Post brings forth that Mitt Romney once forcibly pinned a fellow male student and cut off his long bleached blonde hair simply because Romney thought it (the hair) wasn't right. Another incident involved deliberately holding a door closed on a blind teacher.

Pranks are pranks, but to this reader, these actions are those of an antisocial homophobic psycho.

Is this the type of person we want as President of the USA?

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