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Beats Music update lets you subscribe from inside the iOS app

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 23:34

Odds are that you weren't riveted by Beats Music when it first arrived, but the streaming service has just delivered a pair of big updates that may give you a good excuse to tune in. For the iOS app, the biggest improvement is visible when you're signing up -- you can now subscribe from within the software rather than heading to the web. The move makes it that much easier to keep the music flowing after your trial is over, and may just help Beats grow its fledgling customer base.

Spec Sheet: Toshiba's 4K laptop tries to dominate the high-res competition

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 23:00

Apple may be responsible for really kicking off the demand for high-resolution displays on all of ours smartphones and tablets, but it's other companies that have taken the idea and ran with it. That's true on laptops too, where everything from Samsung's Ativ Books to Asus' Zenbooks have received super high-res displays that in many cases outclass even Apple's Retina Macbook Pros when it comes to pixels. Now, Toshiba is taking things a notch further, announcing a laptop with a 15.6-inch 4K display that'll be available in the US for $1,499.99 beginning next week. Though laptops with displays that go beyond 1080p have only started popping up recently, they're already offered by a surprisingly wide selection of manufacturers.

Ex-Microsoft engineer invents a new machine to help you brew the perfect batch of beer

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 22:30

Home brewing is rewarding but it’s also often fraught with peril — if you don’t thoroughly sterilize all of your equipment or if you drop in the yeast while your wort is still hot, it can ruin hours of hard work. Bloomberg Businessweek has written a profile on former Windows engineer Bill Mitchell, who left Microsoft in 2010 to work full-time on PicoBrew, a startup that’s dedicated to take away as many potential pain points as possible for home brewers. Last fall, PicoBrew launched a Kickstarter for Zymatic, its own automatic beer brewing appliance that raised more than $660,000, or more than four times its original goal of $150,000. PicoBrew’s pitch is very appealing to anyone who’s ever tried their hand

5 features an Amazon phone might offer

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 21:46

NEW YORK (AP) — A report this week in The Wall Street Journal that Amazon is planning to release a smartphone has prompted industry analysts and technology blogs to muse about what the device might offer.

Daily Roundup: Xperia Z2 review, Oculus VR lets a terminal patient travel and more!

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 21:37

You might say the day is never really done in consumer technology news. Your workday, however, hopefully draws to a close at some point. This is the Daily Roundup on Engadget, a quick peek back at the top headlines for the past 24 hours -- all handpicked by the editors here at the site. Click on through the break, and enjoy.

Now Android fans can play one of the greatest computer games ever on their tablets

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 21:15

Old-school RPG fans still get nostalgic when you bring up Baldur’s Gate, the classic Bioware D&D-based adventure that set the standard for computer RPGs when it was released all the way back in 1998. In fact, the Balur’s Gate series’s popularity has been so enduring that studio Beamdog has overhauled it with improved graphics and features while also adding touch controls to make it easy to play on tablets. Although Beamdog released its Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition for the iPad a while ago, the studio has finally gotten around to porting it to Android, and it’s now available on the Google Play store for $9.99. Although the iPad version of the overhauled Baldur’s Gate received mixed marks for its buggy controls,

White House delays Keystone XL pipeline decision indefinitely

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 21:15

Despite passing the State Department's final environmental analysis earlier this year, the controversial Keystone XL pipeline is facing more delays well before developments get underway. In an announcement made today, the Obama White House stated that it is putting its final approval of the project on hold. According to White House officials, the decision to delay the presidential go-ahead comes as Nebraska lawmakers debate whether or not the 1,179-mile pipeline can be built through the state. US District Court Judge Stephanie Stacy overturned a law in February that originally approved the project, stating in her ruling that the law violated Nebraska's state constitution.

How the Touch Screen Became So Out of Touch

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 20:46

The touch screen -- interface of the future or gimmicky marketing headache? When the first touch screen interfaces came out (at least in a big consumer kind of way) it was in smartphones. Sure there have been other instances of touch screen interfaces (ATM machines, TV remotes, etc.) but no touch screen application has ever become so prolific, so fast, as did the smartphone touch screen. It seemed like overnight we began seeing every sort of tech device coming to us with a touch screen built into it, so much so that the usefulness became very hit or miss. In

Nike reportedly killing the Fuelband to focus on fitness software

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 20:18

Just days after Nike announced the launch of its Fuel Lab location in San Francisco to enhance partnerships with other digital services for athletes, there's a report that it's fired much of the team behind its FuelBand wristwear. CNET ...

Hide your stash, heat-seeking drones are helping thugs hijack UK weed crops

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 20:15

Criminals are dicks. That much we all know is true. But now these dicks are using heat-sensing drones to pull off "sophisticated" heists of weed farms (yes, that weed) in the United Kingdom, as local paper Halesowen News discovered. Consider this quote from one enterprising crop hijacker:

Nike reportedly abandons the FuelBand and lays off its hardware division

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 20:09

Nike confirmed to CNET this afternoon that the company is laying off people in its hardware division, which makes the FuelBand line of fitness trackers. "As a fast-paced, global business we continually align resources with business priorities," Nike spokesman Brian Strong told The Verge in an email. Citing an unnamed source, CNET reports that as many as 55 people on Nike's 70-person hardware team were laid off on Thursday. The original FuelBand launched in 2012, but Nike was slow to iterate on it.

Blizzard’s free Hearthstone card game conquers the iPad

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 20:00

Blizzard’s new Warcraft-inspired card game soft-launched on iPad in early April, and was released worldwide earlier this week as a free download. However, in less than a day the game took the App Store by storm, quickly becoming the top application in the Top Free Apps charts in many markets. According to data provided by App Annie, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is now the No. 1 free app in 38 markets where the App Store is available to customers, including the U.S. When looking at iPad games only, the app is No. 1 in 40 countries. Hearthstone quickly dethroned previous title holders, including Microsoft’s recently launched Office for iPad suite of productivity apps, but also many other free-to-play games. Hearthstone

Dutch man's case linked to Amanda Todd

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 19:55

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Canadian police confirmed an arrest has been made in the Netherlands in the case of a Canadian teenager who was blackmailed into exposing herself in front of a webcam. The 15-year-old later committed suicide after detailing her harassment on a YouTube video watched by millions around the world.

Samsung running out of time against Apple in court

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 19:47

Both sides get 25 hours each to call up, and cross-examine one another's witnesses — and Samsung's running low. By the end of the day the company had a little under four hours left, time it needs to convince a jury that Apple's infringing on two of its patents. Samsung spent much of this week attempting to pick apart Apple's argument it had copied features from iPhones, iPods, and iPads. That ultimately ended with Samsung's chief attorney pleading (unsuccessfully) with the judge for more time to make its case.

Labels claim Pandora owes money for streaming old songs, probably won't get it

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 19:02

Pandora can't catch a break, it seems. Just weeks after the streaming radio service escaped paying higher royalties to songwriters, record companies and musicians have sued it in a New York court for allegedly violating state copyright laws by ...

Mt. Gox CEO won't appear in U.S. for questions about bankruptcy case

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 18:59
Mark Karpeles, the chief executive of Mt. Gox, said he would not come to the United States to answer questions about the Japanese bitcoin exchange's U.S. bankruptcy case, Mt. Gox lawyers told a federal judge on Monday. In the court filing, Mt. Gox lawyers cited a subpoena from the U.S. Department of Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, which has closely monitored virtual currencies like bitcoin. "Mr. Karpeles is now in the process of obtaining counsel to represent him with respect to the FinCEN Subpoena. Until such time as counsel is retained and has an opportunity to 'get up to speed' and advise Mr. Karpeles, he is not willing to travel to the U.S.", the filing said.

Easter weekend flash sale offers PS3 and Vita games for $0.99

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 18:45

U.S. PlayStation fans weren’t fortunate enough to receive a big Easter promotion like their European counterparts, but Sony is making up for it with a 99 cent flash sale this weekend, slashing prices on over 25 games on the PlayStation Network. Sony announced on the PlayStation Blog that the offer had officially gone live on Friday, featuring PlayStation 3, Vita and PS2/PS1 Classics that will cost you less than a dollar to pick up. The full list follows below. Back to the Future: The Game – Full Series Blast Factor Braid Crash Bandicoot Crash Bandicoot 2 Crash Bandicoot 3: WARPED Crash Commando CTR: Crash Team Racing echochrome ii Everyday Shooter Gex: Enter the Gecko Gotham City Imposters Jurassic Park: The Game – Full Season Plants vs Zombies

SpaceX continues its mission toward reusable rockets

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 18:42

Metamucil One, you’re go for take off. Remember, you will be carrying 40 tons of Metamucil, America’s number one fiber supplement. Since the creation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, astronauts have been forced to deal with eating food that does a real number on their digestive systems. The launch of Metamucil One marks a major step forward in the NASA astronaut diet. Thank you for your patriotism.

Mt. Gox suitors seek support to save bitcoin exchange

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 18:32

(Reuters) - A group of investors seeking to buy Mt. Gox has launched a website to garner support from creditors of the bankrupt bitcoin exchange to prevent a liquidation of its assets.

Intertwingled: The Work and Influence of Ted Nelson

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 18:01

Though he's personally disappointed in the way the World Wide Web has emerged and become integral to our relationship with knowledge, Nelson's influence on the many people who have shaped our digital world is immense.