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Samsung is searching for an answer to Apple Pay

Samsung is edging closer to debuting its own take on wireless payments, according to a report from Recode. Following the launch of Apple Pay earlier this year, Samsung has reportedly been trying to license technology from startup LoopPay to create a competing service. Although the site’s anonymous sources agree that LoopPay and Samsung have been […]

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Kindle for iOS now makes it easier for newbies to start reading

  It’s getting awfully cold outside, which really means one thing: Your time is much better spent curled up in bed reading. Amazon’s trying to make that proposition a little more enticing for iOS devotees with a new app update that (among other things!) makes the whole shebang a little more social. Kindle newcomers can […]

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SoundCloud’s new hub puts all your favorite audio in one place

SoundCloud isn’t shy about its plans to launch a subscription service, but it’s going to need a new interface to make that service work — and it just took one of the first big steps in that direction. Updates to its iOS and web apps (Android is coming in 2015) now include Collection, a hub […]

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Jaguar’s smart windshield will eliminate blind spots

It’s hard to spot every possible road hazard. Mirrors and cameras will show what’s behind you, but your car’s roof pillars can still hide careless pedestrians and aggressive drivers. They won’t be issues if Jaguar’s 360-degree Virtual Urban Windscreen comes to fruition. The update to the company’s windshield project uses cameras to create “transparent” pillars […]

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Fitbit says Charge skin issues aren’t caused by its materials

Fitbit is no stranger to customer complaints, especially when it comes to skin issues. After dealing with a wave of criticism, and subsequent recall, of its Force activity tracker last year, the company recently introduced a trio of new gadgets. Well, early adopters are already crying foul with reports of irritation after using the Fitbit […]

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Climate change deal has 194 countries cutting emissions

  Deals to reduce greenhouse gases (such as 1997’s Kyoto Protocol) have been in place for years. However, they’ve typically limited the reductions to richer nations — poorer countries have objected to previous attempts to broaden the scope due to requirements they see as burdensome. At last, though, a truly global deal is underway. A […]

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Microsoft kicks off Skype’s Translator preview on Windows 8.1

  Tu madre es una tarantula. Entiendes? If you didn’t catch that, Skype’s got you covered. Microsoft just kicked off Skype’s Translator preview, which, as the name suggests, can automatically translate speech in real time. While English and Spanish are the only supported spoken languages at the moment, the feature can also translate instant messaging […]

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Supercomputer gives most accurate picture yet of star formation

Scientists may finally have an answer to the question of why fewer stars than expected form out of interstellar material. So far, the best simulations have predicted that nearly allthe matter in vast clouds of interstellar gases would eventually cool and become stars. However, only a small percentage actually does, so an international team led […]

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Indiegogo’s new service lets you quickly raise funds for personal causes (updated)

  Crowdfunding sites are typically meant for companies with bright ideas, but they don’t work so well for personal fundraising — there’s a lot of setup involved, and the fees you’ll pay could be better spent on the cause in question. Indiegogo wants to make those personal campaigns relatively painless with its new Indiegogo Life […]

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New app tells you if you’re too drunk to drive, helps call a cab

  If you need your cellphone to decide if you’ve had one too many, that’s probably a sign you should call a cab or car service. Nevertheless, the state of Maryland has just launched an app (funded by the federal National Highway Traffic Safety Administration), that will tell you your approximate blood alcohol content (BAC), […]

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Amazon UK glitch sells thousands of products for a penny

Christmas is always an expensive time of year, but for some lucky Brits ordering gifts on Amazon, the festive celebrations may have kicked off a little early. You see, between 7pm and 8pm last Friday, listings on the website were affected by a price glitch, which discounted thousands of marketplace products to the insanely low […]

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Google Earth’s third-party app support is going away, for now

Google Earth’s technology has led to some pretty cool third-party projects over the past six years, but you may not see many of those efforts for at least a little while. Google has announced that it’s retiring Earth’s app programming interface within a year. Any mapping software built using that kit will stop working on […]

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Blackhat trailer promises a hacking thriller, computer screens that beep

Question: What is the title of that movie that revolves around a hacker (or two) caught up in a huge scheme or conspiracy that has something to do with a gargantuan corporation and/or the government? Your choices are: A.) Young-Angelina Jolie starrer Hackers B.) Travolta, Berry and Jackman movie Swordfish C.) Chris Hemsworth’s new flick […]

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Hackers won’t release Sony workers’ personal info if they object

  Here’s an odd twist to the Sony Pictures hack: the attackers are becoming courteous… relatively speaking, of course. The Guardians of Peace are threatening to release yet more of the studio’s data as a “Christmas gift,” but they’re also offering to withhold personal information if employees ask to keep it out of the public […]

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The Big Picture: Telescope tech shines a rainbow on a train station

  To celebrate Amsterdam Central Station’s 125th anniversary, Dutch artist Daan Roosegaarde has transformed one of its facades into a rainbow-colored wonder using telescope technology. Roosegaarde has partnered with University of Leiden astronomers to conjure up a projector that floods the station’s 45-meter arched roof with lights resembling a rainbow. These lights fit the semi-circular […]

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Spiders are the key to ultra-sensitive wearable devices

Spiders might creep you out, but don’t dismiss them too quickly — they may well be the ticket to a new wave of wearable sensors. South Korean researchers have built a devicethat picks up miniscule vibrations by using the principle behind a spider’s lyriform organs, which shake (and send nervous signals) in response to the […]

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