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+ - In the new age of game development, gamers hold the reins->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "In the olden times before high-speed Internet, the game you purchased on day one was what you were still playing months later. Now we live in an era of day-one patches, hotfixes, balance updates, and more. Diablo III, for example, is unrecognizable today compared to the state it was in when it launched back in 2012. Nowadays, savvy gamers go in expecting their experience to change over time — to improve over time. Today, Early Access is both an acknowledgment of the dangers of early adoption (no one likes to be a guinea pig, after all) and an opportunity for enthusiastic consumers to have a say in how the product they’ve purchased will take shape. In a special report, Digital Trends' Adam Rosenberg talks with Michael McMain, CEO and founder of Xaviant, and creative director on the indie studio’s first project — Lichdom: Battlemage, which embraces the concept like never before."
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+ - Head of MS Research on Special Projects, Google X and Win 9->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "Microsoft Research finally earned some long-overdue headlines last week, when ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley reported on a “Special Projects” group that would tackle disruptive technology and ultimately Google X. Peter Lee, head of the division and its 1,100 researchers, told Digital Trends he’s not frustrated by all of that glowing press for Google’s researchers and the lack of attention for MSR. “Frustrating is not quite the right word,” Lee said, in an interview ahead of the ribbon-cutting ceremony for MSR’s New York City office. “I like Google X. The people there are good friends of mine. Astro [Teller, “Captain of Moonshots” with Google X] took classes from me at Carnegie Mellon, he’s a great guy doing great stuff. But the missions are different. We want to make things better and ship them. That will always be primary for us. It will be secondary for them.”"
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+ - Healbe's GoBe, the impossible, amazing calorie-counting gizmo->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "Russian company Healbe claims that sensors on its activity tracking wristband GoBe can discern how many calories you’re consuming each day, simply by resting on your skin and monitoring the sugar level of your cells. The company has raised $1,054,127 on Indiegogo based on that pitch, and for anyone with diabetes who constantly draws blood to monitor their sugar level, the very idea is a game changer. Yet the company’s claims and the crowd-funded cash have led to widespread blowback, notably from James Robinson of Pando Daily, who has written 14 separate reports on the GoBe wristband since March 20, labeling it a scam and calling the team at Healbe “fraudsters.” To get answers, Digital Trends met with senior leadership of Healbe for the first public demonstration of the watch. In short, the GoBe appears to be a real device with real people behind it, and a real history."
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+ - Butterflies Sip Crocodile Tears->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "Scientists have spotted butterflies and bees sipping on the tears of crocodiles. The brave bugs’ tear-sipping behavior likely provides salts and proteins scarce in the tropics. The practice may be more common than scientists once thought—just rare to witness."
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+ - How HSL is taking eSports mainstream at high school->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Interesting interview with the creators of the High School Star League, an organisation dedicated to furthering eSports as a viable hobby and even a career for children and young adults. The HSL has been active in the US for a while but is now making a headway into Europe, where it's finding Counter-Strike is proving much more popular than RTS and MOBA games. There are also a significant amount of girls getting involved as well — as many as seven percent of competitors. It's a start, right?"
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+ - US Should Use Trampolines to Get Astronauts to the ISS Suggests Russian Official

Submitted by Hugh Pickens DOT Com
Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) writes "The Washington Post reports that Russia's Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin has lashed out again, this time at newly announced US ban on high-tech exports to Russia suggesting that "after analyzing the sanctions against our space industry, I propose the US delivers its astronauts to the ISS with a trampoline." Rogozin does actually have a point, although his threats carry much less weight than he may hope. Russia is due to get a $457.9 million payment for its services soon and few believe that Russia would actually give it up. Plus, as Jeffrey Kluger noted at Time Magazine, Russia may not want to push the United States into the hands of SpaceX and Orbital Sciences, two private American companies that hope to be able to send passengers to the station soon. SpaceX and Orbital Sciences have already made successful unmanned resupply runs to the ISS and both are also working on upgrading their cargo vehicles to carry people. SpaceX is currently in the lead and expects to launch US astronauts, employed by SpaceX itself, into orbit by 2016. NASA is building its own heavy-lift rocket for carrying astronauts beyond low-Earth orbit, but it won’t be ready for anything but test flights until after 2020. "That schedule, of course, could be accelerated considerably if Washington gave NASA the green light and the cash," says Kluger. "America’s manned space program went from a standing start in 1961 to the surface of the moon in 1969—eight years from Al Shepard to Tranquility Base. The Soviet Union got us moving then. Perhaps Russia will do the same now.""

+ - Wonder-Material Graphene Could Be Dangerous to Humans and the Environment->

Submitted by Zothecula
Zothecula (1870348) writes "It’s easy to get carried away when you start talking about graphene. Its properties hold the promise of outright technological revolution in so many fields that it has been called a wonder material. Two recent studies, however, give us a less than rosy angle. In the first, a team of biologists, engineers and material scientists at Brown University examined graphene’s potential toxicity in human cells. Another study by a team from University of California, Riverside’s Bourns College of Engineering examined how graphene oxide nanoparticles might interact with the environment if they found their way into surface or ground water sources."
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+ - GoDaddy, Name.com begin selling .ninja URLs->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "On April 1, Domain name giant GoDaddy dropped a giant ninjutsu chop on the Internet, beginning the registration period for the stealthiest of domains, .ninja. When the new top-level domain (TLD) goes live on May 28, URLs ending with .ninja will live alongside .coms and .nets in the databases that make the Internet tick – and embarrass all other websites with their coolness. “.ninja is not fully out in general availability yet, but it is purchasable,” GoDaddy Senior Vice President and General Manager of Domains Mike McLaughlin told Digital Trends. Get your hands on one through Name.com, GoDaddy.com, and several others right now. What's YOUR Ninja URL going to be?"
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+ - How Apple's CarPlay could save the car stereo industry->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "Car stereo salesmen and installers around the country are giddy with excitement because Apple’s CarPlay in-car infotainment system will have a big presence in the aftermarket car stereo industry. The Nikkei Asian Review reports that Alpine is making car stereo head units for between $500 – $700 that will run the iOS-like system Apple unveiled last month, and Macrumors added Clarion to the list of CarPlay supporters. Even Pioneer is getting into the game with support said to be coming to existing car stereo models in its NEX line ($700 – $1400) via firmware update, according to Twice. Given Apple’s wildly supportive fan base, its likely that a lot of aftermarket CarPlay units are about to fly off stereo shop shelves. Indeed, CarPlay coming to aftermarket stereo units could bring back what Apple indirectly stole from the industry going back as far as 2006."
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+ - With Windows Phone 8.1, Microsoft finally delivers->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "Wow. Who knew one-tenth of a number could make such a difference? Windows Phone 8.1, the next version of Microsoft’s smartphone operating system, is now out for early download, and the first reviews are in. And reviewers are really impressed. The upgrade brings a long list of small tweaks, many of which may sound insignificant. But all together they’ve made Windows Phone an OS that worked better in your life than past versions, whihc meant a lot of big and small sacrifices. For the first time, Microsoft may have finally caught up to its rivals. You heard it here first: Windows Phone is finally a good alternative to your iPhone, Galaxy, or Nexus."
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+ - Astronauts of Future Could Survive on Their Own Urine->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "Future space travelers could more efficiently recycle their own urine to reclaim its water and make a little electrical power to boot. Researchers have found a way to separate the toxic byproducts of urine, leaving behind water that is safe to drink, plus chemicals that can be fed into a battery-like fuel cell. In tests, the amount of electrical power generated is small: Voltages are about 0.2 volts, and currents about 2 milliamps. But the team hopes to improve the power output in its next version of the system."
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+ - Heartbleed bug affects phones and tablets too->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "The Heartbleed bug is bad and affects a huge portion of all websites — as much as 66 percent of all sites around the world. Unfortunately, your smartphone isn't safe either. The bug can be exploited on mobile devices, though the risks aren’t as great as they are on a desktop computer browsing the Web. Mobile security company Lookout downplayed the risks, saying: “The good news is that we have yet to see any attacks targeting a mobile device, and while this is a credible risk, the likelihood of you encountering an exploit is low.” iOS devices are safe, and Windows Phone OS is likely safe. BlackBerry is “investigating.” But Android is vulnerable if you have version 4.1.1, according to Google."
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+ - It's time to return to the moon, former NASA propulsion chief says->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "Close your eyes. You see that shimmering, veiny darkness that most people see, right? Not me. I see the moon. It’s the closest otherworldly body to us, making it the least challenging to explore of all the planets, moons and asteroids in our solar system. It's an opportunity for humans to establish a permanent presence off Earth — a moon base for scientists or a colony for all of humanity. It could facilitate planet-wide cooperation among Earth’s nations in the pursuit of an answer to life’s biggest question: “Why are we here?” Why go back to the moon? I say, all of the above."
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+ - Betting with bitcoin: Site lets Americans gamble on elections, sports->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "The digital currency bitcoin — once used to facilitate online drug deals — now appears to be enabling people to get around regulations banning online betting. Predictious.com, a new company from Ireland, offers a "prediction market" that allows people to bet on everything from the U.S. presidential election to the Olympics and the Oscars. And it’s all made possible by bitcoins. Betting of this sort is a legal gray area in the U.S., where the federal Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) decided in a 2012 regulatory order not to allow prediction markets on the grounds that they are "contrary to the public interest." While the CFTC forbids prediction markets that use cash, it is less certain that it will go after one that uses bitcoins. “There is no way I can answer [that]. Too speculative for us,” CFTC spokesman Steven Adamske told FoxNews.com."
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