/Technology/ Last Updated: Sun, Feb 17th, 2019 @ 4:05pm EST

Engadget

Kris Naudus

Lightsaber Academy helps you practice your Jedi swing

Toy lightsabers are a lot of fun: Kids love to strike poses, swing them through the air and jab the weapons at their friends as they pretend to be Luke Skywalker, Rey or even Darth Vader and Kylo Ren. But what they can't do with a standard lightsaber...

Engadget

Steve Dent

'Selfie harm' and the damage done by social media

With a new project called Selfie Harm, photographer John Rankin Waddell, better known as Rankin, wanted to see the role social media played on self image in young people. He took photos of a group of teens aged 13 to 19, then asked them to spend a fe...

The Verge

Bijan Stephen

Peach isn’t dead yet

Social media is increasingly the internet: Facebook was founded in 2004, and it ate the web as we knew it then — a collection of microsites and curiosities run by so many individual proprietors, individually. It used to be that personalization was what you did to your site; now it’s found in the ads you’re served. Peach — the microblogging platform— was seemingly designed against those circumscribed possibilities, as an antidote to the weird world-eating dominion of the Twitters and...

Gizmodo

Catie Keck

Airlines Will Offer New Gender Options Beyond 'Male' and 'Female' for Non-Binary Flyers

Many U.S. airlines say they’re in the process of updating their booking systems in order to allow non-binary customers to use pronouns other than “male” or “female.”

Read more...

Gizmodo

Julie Muncy on io9, shared by Catie Keck to Gizmodo

The Star Wars Twitter Posted a Weird Tweet, and Fans Are Freaking Out

Ah, promotional Twitters, a regular source of both great joy and great consternation to fandom everywhere. Sometimes they bring trailers, exclusive clips, interviews, all the joys the excited fan demands. Sometimes, they bring a bounty like today’s: tweets that don’t make any sense.

Read more...

Mashable

Mark Kaufman

This spider's eyes still glow, even though it died 110 million years ago

Fossil hunters in Korea discovered long-dead spiders preserved in rock. And to the delight of scientists, the arachnids' eyes are still reflective — some 110 million years after the creatures died. 

It's rare for insects and arachnids — which are far more brittle than shelled sea creatures — to become fossilized in rocks. But for reasons still unknown, a couple of these spiders did fossilize, and the unique shape of their eye structures continue to reflect light — even in their...

Engadget

Jon Fingas

'Overwatch' action figures and Monopoly are coming this spring

Hasbro is about to give you many, many ways to flaunt your Overwatch fandom beyond the occasional Nerf gun. It's launching a series of toys and games themed around the character-driven shooter, including Monopoly Overwatch Collector's Edition (below...

Gizmodo

Tom McKay

England and Wales to Require Thousands of Criminals to Wear GPS Tracking Bracelets

Thousands of convicted criminals and others accused of crimes in England and Wales will be required to wear GPS-coordinate-tracking bracelets, replacing an older generation of electronic tags not capable of monitoring someone’s movement in real time, the BBC reported on Saturday.

Read more...

Gizmodo

Tercius on Kinja Deals, shared by Tercius to Gizmodo

Sunday's Best Deals: LEGO Star Wars Sets, Gloomhaven, Kindle eBooks, Furniture, and More

An LG Ultra-wide Monitor, a Star Wars Art Book, and a Woot T-Shirt Sale lead off Sunday’s best deals.

Read more...

Mashable

Adam Rosenberg

'Anthem' players are angry about long load times but there's an easy fix

I started playing Anthem at the end of the week, just as the game came online for early access players on PC. And like a lot of other people, I discovered quickly that the load times are brutal.

Anthem is widely perceived as publisher Electronic Arts' response to the success of Destiny. Both games are online-only outer space shooters that depend heavily on a sticky sense of progression and "live" in-game events to keep players invested.

SEE ALSO: 'Anthem' gets off to a rocky start as EA's...

Mashable

Jack Morse

Watch Mike Pence gasp when no one claps at his terrible applause line

Vice President Mike Pence isn't a complicated man. 

He likes Chili's, using his personal AOL account for official government business, and gay conversion therapy. And so, when he addressed attendees at the Middle East conference in Poland on Feb. 14, it's clear he believed that same down-home flavor that's treated him so well in Trump Country would garner rounds of applause from his European audience. 

That, dear reader, is where he went wrong.

Speaking about the widely supported Iran...

The Verge

Sean Hollister

LG says it isn’t launching a folding phone

The first wave of folding phone announcements is nigh, with Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi and others expected to show devices this month. But the one company I’d expect to join them — LG — says it’ll be sitting this one out.

Though LG is the same company that’s been wowing us with rollable TVs, it just told reporters that it’s “too early” to produce a folding phone.

Here’s what LG Electronics mobile and TV boss Brian Kwon said during a press conference in Seoul, as reported by...

Engadget

Wirecutter

The best portable power stations

By Sarah Witman This post was done in partnership with Wirecutter. When readers choose to buy Wirecutter's independently chosen editorial picks, Wirecutter and Engadget may earn affiliate commission. Read the full portable power stations guide here....

TechCrunch

Sarah Perez

SeaBubbles shows off its ‘flying’ all-electric boat in Miami

We were promised flying cars but, as it turns out, flying boats were easier to build.

SeaBubbles, a “flying” boat startup that uses electric power instead of gas, hit Miami this weekend to show off one of its five prototype boats — or six, if you count an early, windowless white boat they’ve lovingly dubbed the “soapdish.” This innovative boat design combines technology from nautical industries, aviation, and intelligent software to raise the hull of the boat out of the water...

Mashable

Mark Kaufman

NBA dunk contest winner leaps up and over Shaq to claim 1st place

To the awe even the NBA's elite All-Stars, guard Hamidou Diallo leaped over 7-foot-1-inch Shaquille O'Neal to win the 2019 dunk contest. 

For emphasis, the Oklahoma City Thunder rookie then hung from the rim by his elbow joint before revealing a Superman shirt hidden beneath his jersey.

Shaq, who once dominated the NBA will his 7'1", 325-pound frame, had his head slightly bowed, but Diallo still made his point and cleared the Hall of Famer's head with some room to spare.

Hamidou Diallo got...

The Verge

Angela Chen

Use these tools to help visualize the horror of rising sea levels

By now, everyone knows: the climate is changing, sea levels are rising, and the crises are likely to happen sooner than expected. Still, it’s one thing to know, and another thing to really see these potential disasters. Luckily (or unluckily), there’s no lack of tools to help the apathetic develop a visceral sense of what could be at stake.

First, Information Is Beautiful has used data from NASA, Sea Level Explorer, and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to create the aptly...

TechCrunch

Joanna Glasner

VCs aren’t falling in love with dating startups

Joanna Glasner Contributor More posts by this contributor Startup names may have passed peak weirdness Where seed and early-stage funding is growing, contracting or holding steady

Some 17 years ago, when internet dating was popular but still kind of embarrassing to talk about, I interviewed an author who was particularly bullish on the practice. Millions of people, he said, have found gratifying relationships online. Were it not for the internet, they...

TechCrunch

Zack Whittaker

OpenAI built a text generator so good, it’s considered too dangerous to release

A storm is brewing over a new language model, built by non-profit artificial intelligence research company OpenAI, which it says is so good at generating convincing, well-written text that it’s worried about potential abuse.

That’s angered some in the community, who have accused the company of reneging on a promise not to close off its research.

OpenAI said its new natural language model, GPT-2, was trained to predict the next word in a sample of 40 gigabytes of internet text. The end...

Mashable

Adam Rosenberg

Don Cheadle stood up for trans kids on 'SNL' and the internet took notice

Don Cheadle, acclaimed actor and true-blue mensch.

The man behind Marvel's War Machine mask brought his politics to the Saturday Night Live stage on Feb. 16. He used fashion to make a statement, at one point introducing Gary Clark, Jr., the night's musical guest, while wearing a simple t-shirt adorned with the words "PROTECT TRANS KIDS."

It was a well-received fashion choice, to say the least.

shit like this is why he survived Infinity War pic.twitter.com/kvBDXQ6NXC

— tweeter valentine...

Mashable

Mark Kaufman

NASA posts image of ghostly blue objects, deep in the cosmos

When a star is born, a chaotic light show ensues. 

NASA's long-lived Hubble Space Telescope captured vivid bright clumps moving through the cosmos at some 1,000 light years from Earth. The space agency called these objects clear "smoking gun" evidence of a newly formed star — as new stars blast colossal amounts of energy-rich matter into space, known as plasma. 

Seen as the vivid blue, ephemeral clumps in the top center of the new image below, these are telltale signs of an energy-rich...

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