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Industry & Technology

Before you buy a Bluetooth speaker, read this - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 8:47pm
Vizio’s little sound bar wireless subwoofer system blows away some pricier Bluetooth speakers.

Pop band Virtual Currency Girls croons about cryptocurrency - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 8:04pm
Bitcoin has the beat. Japan debuts a pop band with costumed girls who sing all about digital money.

Sennheiser’s newest audiophile headphones will coddle your ears - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 7:47pm
The HD 660 S will look and sound familiar to Sennheiser enthusiasts, and that’s a good thing.

Recycled guns give these headphones heft and a cause - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 6:26pm
Concerned about gun violence? So is the Swedish company Yevo, which is doing something about it.

Laptop team-ups power new PCs at CES 2018 - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 6:00pm
Whether it was Intel and AMD, laptop bodies and smartphone brains, or Alexa and everyone, the story of new computers at CES was a tale of team-ups.

Review: Fallout: The Board Game

Ars Technica - January 13, 2018 - 4:00pm

Enlarge / Two letters short of being truly S.P.E.C.I.A.L.! Also, note the V.A.T.S. dice. (credit: Charles Theel)

Welcome to Ars Cardboard, our weekend look at tabletop games! Check out our complete board gaming coverage at

Would you be surprised if I told you that the new Fallout board game from Fantasy Flight Games (FFG) was something special? You really shouldn't be, since FFG has a fantastic track record of nailing intellectual properties like Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars, and Doom. Fallout is the latest success here, a tabletop design that feels like a passionate love letter to its source material, even as it stumbles in some areas.

This cardboard version of the digital classic is best described as a narrative adventure game for up to four players. Participants compete for thumbs (the energetic expression for victory points) by engaging in branching story paths, acquiring gear, and throwing their weight behind one of the factions vying for power.

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Beauty tech lives at the intersection of self-care and self-loathing - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 4:00pm
A flotilla of devices at CES 2018 use technology to help you look better. But after trying a few of these out, I just felt worse about my looks.

The detailed toys and rare collectibles that keep watch over our home offices

Ars Technica - January 13, 2018 - 3:15pm

Thanks to Ars Technica's unique staff-from-all-over arrangement, we don't often see how our coworkers organize their home offices. There's also the matter of us being a bunch of overgrown children who keep, and proudly display, all kinds of toys, action figures, dolls, and other nerdy decorations in our home offices.

Thus, this latest edition of our ongoing "how Ars works" series focuses specifically on the toys and characters that keep watch over our desks, chairs, coffee mugs, and other home-office accoutrements.

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The Usenet Deep Space 9 recapper who helped inspire modern TV criticism

Ars Technica - January 13, 2018 - 2:24pm

In 1993, TV—and TV writing—were much different entities than what we know today. (credit: Tony Young)

Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, Exhibit 5,768: the current golden age of TV has clearly inspired a golden age of TV writing. And if you follow today’s TV criticism at all, chances are a handful of names immediately come to mind (people like Emily Nussbaum at The New Yorker or James Poniewozik at The New York Times, for instance). But time and time again, stories on the rise of this format in recent years end up pointing to one writer—Uproxx’s Alan Sepinwall—as the dean of modern TV criticism.

While landmark TV writing sites like TV Without Pity (1998) wouldn’t come along until the Internet matured, Sepinwall was on the Web back when “Lynx and Mosaic were the only two browsers and you had to drive uphill through the snow both ways to get to the Yahoo! homepage,” as he once put it. Back in 1993, long before he started his own blog or went on to contribute to the Star Ledger and Hitfix, Sepinwall was just a college sophomore posting about NYPD Blue to Usenet.

DS9 recapper / physics teacher, Tim Lynch. (credit:

Ask Sepinwall about the origins of modern TV writing, however, and he has something different in mind: Usenet’s rec.arts.startrek.current and a certain Deep Space Nine recapper extraordinaire named Tim Lynch.

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Is Creative's X-Fi Sonic Carrier Atmos sound bar worth $5,800? - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 2:00pm
The Creative X-Fi Sonic Carrier is a tremendously expensive Dolby Atmos sound bar, but does it have the performance to back up the price?

Knowing when to cut: How movie editing manipulates emotion - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 2:00pm
Film editor Tatiana S Riegel, who worked on "I, Tonya," "JFK" and "Game of Thrones", explains how editing can massively alter a movie's emotional impact.

Did Twitter engineers just admit to shadow-banning conservatives? Nope

Ars Technica - January 13, 2018 - 1:25pm

Enlarge / James O'Keefe. (credit: Gage Skidmore)

James O'Keefe is a conservative activist who has made a name for himself with hidden camera investigations of supposedly liberal organizations. This week, he turned his attention to Twitter, publishing a series of secretly recorded videos of Twitter employees (and former employees) discussing Twitter's content moderation policies and political culture.

O'Keefe claims to have uncovered smoking-gun evidence of a far-reaching conspiracy to suppress conservative speech on the Twitter platform. Conservative media outlets have taken that frame and run with it.

But there's a lot less to the two videos Project Veritas released this week than meets the eye. For example, O'Keefe has repeatedly highlighted Twitter engineer Steven Pierre's comment that Twitter was working on software to "ban a way of talking." The strong implication is that the "way of talking" Pierre wants to ban is conservative political speech. But if you actually watch the full video, that's clearly not what Pierre meant.

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Intel puts security on the todo list, Tavis topples torrent tool, and more

The Register - January 13, 2018 - 11:11am
A quick catch-up on infosec stuff beyond what we've already reported

Roundup The security world is still feeling the aftereffects of last week's CPU design flaw disclosures, which continued to dominate the news this week, even amid the noisy CES jamboree in Las Vegas.…

Singapore Android TV sellers face copyright infringement charges

ZDnet News - January 13, 2018 - 10:38am
Two companies have been brought to Singapore's state courts over a piracy lawsuit filed by four companies that include local pay TV operators Singtel and StarHub.

CES 2018: CarWink emojis seek to replace driver hand gestures

BBC Technology News - January 13, 2018 - 8:17am
A small display that shows images offers motorists a new way to communicate to each other.

CES 2018: Merge Blaster mixes real world with game

BBC Technology News - January 13, 2018 - 7:36am
A hi-tech toy gun lets gamers play virtual reality-style games without having to wear a headset.

The Duke, original Xbox controller/doorstop, returns at CES - CNET - News - January 13, 2018 - 7:05am
We chat with proud Xbox papa Seamus Blackley about the revival of his infamous gamepad, back in March for $70. And we go hands-on with the new version.

Bentley Bentayga V8 goes for the sweet spot among ultra-posh SUVs - Roadshow - News - January 13, 2018 - 7:01am
The Bentayga V8 will offer similar luxury and excellent road manners for less money than the W12.

CES 2018: Bringing female equality to the WWE's ring

BBC Technology News - January 13, 2018 - 4:13am
World Wrestling Entertainment’s Stephanie McMahon explains her firm's move into virtual reality.

CES 2018: Food store AI sees what you put in basket

BBC Technology News - January 13, 2018 - 4:00am
A prototype system spots what shoppers pick up so that they can avoid queuing to pay at the till.

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