Independent news, views, opinions and reviews on the latest gadgets, games, science, technology and research from Apple and more. It’s about the technologies that change the way we live, work, love and behave.
Hear the one about the 11-year-old on Facebook? Not exactly nicking porn mags from the newsagents or drinking fags in the boozer, but it’s enough to shock and amaze today’s worriers.
The story is that when a father from Northern Ireland learned that his 11-year-old daughter had created Facebook accounts and uploaded sexual photos she was exposed to messages of “entirely inappropriate sexual nature” from men. Dad was so upset he sued the website. He reasoned that Facebook should have enforced its age restrictions policies – only over-13s are allowed their own accounts.
Facebook did shut down her account when it realised her age. But she continued to create news ones.
The Mail says Facebook settled outside of court with the man for an undisclosed sum.
Like you, we’re confused. Under 16s – so those legit 13-year-olds with Facebook accounts – are underage. Why is it ok for them to have an account and not for an 11-year-old? Is Facebook’s age policy based on the Bar Mitzvah factor – you become an adult at 13? Says the father:
“My own personal view is that Facebook isn’t suitable for under-18s, but the company isn’t even able to uphold its own policy of keeping under-13s out. An age check, like asking for a passport number, would be a simple measure for Facebook to implement.”
“We are generally forbidden by privacy laws against giving unauthorized access to someone who is not an account holder. We encourage parents to exercise any discretion they can on their own computers and in overseeing their kids’ internet use. Please talk to your kids, educate them about internet safety, and ask them to use our extensive privacy settings.”
Well, yeah. What about parental responsibility. Facebook should sue.
PS – what self-respecting child is on Facebook when SnapChat and Instagram are soooooo much cooler?
American scientist Dave Whitlock says:
“No one did clinical trials on people taking showers every day. I have not taken a shower in 12 years.”
(Via Oddity Central):
….In fact, he says that the chemicals in our soaps and shampoos have destroyed all the friendly bacteria that once inhabited our skin and kept us clean.
Whitlock first started thinking about good bacteria when a woman he was dating asked him why horses liked to roll around in the dirt during summer.
No plumbing in the stable?
“The only way that horses could evolve this behavior was if they had substantial evolutionary benefits from it,” Whitlock explained. That’s when he realised that for the horses, this was actually a way of keeping clean.
Until then, no one had considered that skin bacteria was important and could be helpful to the body. “I didn’t have a biology degree – I wasn’t at an institution that was renowned for its biological research,” Whitlock said. “And I was proposing something completely off the wall.” But he went ahead and invented a one-of-a-kind spray – called ‘Mother Dirt AO+ Mist’ – consisting of ‘good’ bacteria.
Whether or not he scored another date is not known.
The FBI is watching you users of porn app. Porn Droid. If you’re looking at smut on your Android phone, the FBI will lock it, display a message that you are on the official porn-watchers register, take your photo and fine you $500. Of course, this is not the actual FBI, rather Russian hackers who want to shake you onanists down for cash.
The IB Times:
According to security company ESET, which uncovered the campaign, the only way to recover access to your phone is through a factory reset, which means that all your photos, videos and contacts will be deleted and, unless they have been backed up, will be lost forever.
File under: spot the real wankers.
Drones are invasive. And now YouTuber user Gasturbine101 has managed to make them still more annoying by creating one that can fly him over your heads.
Called Swarm – aka The Manned Aerial Vehicle Multirotor Super Drone – the device is a load of pricey drones stuck together.
Hail the human wasp!
How fast is New Horizon’s moving as it flew by Pluto? We know the numbers: the pod that’s taken nine year to reach Pluto is moving at 36,000 mph.
Clay Bavor has created a Gif to help us understand the phenomenal speed.
Flying at 37k feet, this is what it would be like to look out the window of a 747 vs. an SR-71 vs. a New Horizons.
Flying at 37k feet, this is what it would be like to look out the window of a 747 vs. an SR-71 vs. a New Horizons. pic.twitter.com/ChVsgK77Rl
— Clay Bavor (@claybavor) July 17, 2015
Give a man a VR headset and a plastic doll and he’s good to go.
Londoner David Wilson tells us how it was done:
All the animations seen in the music video were created in camera. No stopframe techniques, or computer super-imposing was used; what you see is what rolled off the camera. The animations in the side-on views were produced by the camera capturing the moving reflections from the mirrored carousels, and the animations in the top-down views were created by matching the cameras frame rate to that of spinning record. The transitions between each section of animation was created by simply cutting or wiping between the bits of footage.
And shows us:
Waiter, waiter, there’s a robot in my soup:
Many chains are already at work looking for ingenious ways to take humans out of the picture, threatening workers in an industry that employs 2.4 million wait staffers, nearly 3 million cooks and food preparers and many of the nation’s 3.3 million cashiers….
The avalanche of rising costs is why franchisers are aggressively looking for technology that can allow them to produce more food faster with higher quality and lower waste. Dave Brewer is chief operating officer with Middleby Corp., which owns dozens of kitchen equipment brands, and is constantly developing new ways to optimize performance and minimize cost.
They’re blaming the minimum wage.
Now to get a Hard Ticket to Hawaii – scroll down for the killer frisbee.
James Risner made this model train track. The train goes on. The train never stops.
You can send anyone a photo of your penis via a feature “buried in Apple’s iPhone”, says the Indy. No need to download Snapchat or send an email. One iPhone user found the feature and sent a stranger a photo of his knob.
The woman received the picture during her journey on a train in South London, when she was sent it using Apple’s AirDrop feature. The technology is intended to let people easily share pictures between phones — but can be used by anyone in the immediate vicinity to send images to other people.
The neodymium magnet is “the most widely used type of rare-earth magnet, is a permanent magnet made from an alloy of neodymium, iron and boron to form the Nd2Fe14B tetragonal crystalline structure.” But you already knew that.
Ben Millam, a self-styled “aspiring geek”, has created a cat feeding machine. If Ben’s pet feline Monkey wants to eat he must hunt for RFID-tagged white plastic balls placed strategically around the home.
When Monkey finds a ball, he needs to place it into a bowl atop the machine. This triggers a release of food.
Those good people at Disinfo point us towards Future Shock, the film based on Alvin Toffler’s 1970 book. Released in 1972, Orson Welles narrates.
Alvin Toffler notes:
“We may define future shock as the distress, both physical and psychological, that arises from an overload of the human organism’s physical adaptive systems and its decision-making processes… Put more simply, future shock is the human response to over-stimulation…”
This is Future Shock…
To Brazil, where Anthony Kulkamp Dias is playing the guitar as surgeons operate on his brain. Doctors wanted to monitor Mr Dias’ cognitive functions during the surgery. Playing a guitar was his idea.
The 20-year-old strummed Yesterday by The Beatles and a tune he wrote for his young son.
Kulkamp Dias tells The Telegraph:
“I played six soongs at certain times. My right hand was a bit weaker because that was the side that they were operating on. So I stopped and rested. I was interspersing songs and talking with them… The doctors asked me to repeat one of the country songs, so I even had an encore.”
Spotter: NY Daily News
In 1987, Der Boxroboter was introduced to the world via Sports Illustrated:
The German Democratic Republic is very advanced in the use of scientific training methods for its athletes. Now the East Germans have beaten the world to the punch in the sport of boxing. Meet Der Boxroboter, a GDR-designed-and-built computerized robot that can hang in there with the best of fighters for hours on end. ”It’s tough to find good sparring partners, especially for heavyweights,” says Dieter Seala of the GDR trade mission, which plans to market DBs internationally for a little more than $33,000 apiece. ”Human sparring partners get tired after a few rounds. They get punched too many times and lose their consistency.”
DB is not just a Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em robot. It can be programmed to assume any fighting style — attack the upper body, go for the belly, back an opponent into a corner — and is allegedly quicker across the ring than any human boxer. DB is equally adept at throwing rights and lefts and has great wheels (literally).
The action begins just before 20 minutes:
The National Portrait Gallery has unveiled Sean Henry’s painted bronze sculpture of Sir Tim Berners-Lee.
His lap-top’s in the leather bag slung over his shoulder.
Meet Patrick, the “simulated patient that talks to medical students while offering real-time feedback about the virtual prostate exam he’s receiving.” Patrick is the voice of a robotic backside:
Medical Daily reports:
Patrick serves a dual purpose: personal and professional. Personally, he comes equipped with software that enables him to interact emotionally with the student and voice any concerns he has about the procedure. Dr. Benjamin Lok, one of the program’s designers, says the interpersonal relationship Patrick helps foster is invaluable from a practicing perspective. “This virtual human patient can talk to the learner, expresses fears and concerns about the prostate exam, and presents a realistic patient encounter,” Lok told Geekosystem.
The other purpose he serves is functional. Patrick is endowed with force sensors, which can alert the student when he or she is being too aggressive, and can report how thorough the student was in his or her examination.
“Consider this,” Lok said, “how would a medical student know if they are doing a good prostate exam? Currently it is impossible for the educator to gauge performance. This simulation provides performance, feedback, and an opportunity to learn and lower anxiety.”
File under: robots taking students’ jobs.
Via: Medical Daily and DM
Artist Jesse England’s “E-Book Backup” project sees him photocopy his Kindle version of George Orwell’s 1984. He photocopied every page, one by one. He then uploaded the scanned copy to his Kindle.
This is the unmanned Blue Origin suborbital spacecraft, New Shepard, which has soared 307,000 feet into the skies. Blue Origin is part-owned by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, who, to the best of our knowledge, never has been pictured naked.
For more phallic pocket rockets, see Flashbak.
On Google Maps, a look around the Pakistani city of Rawlpindi coughs up the image of the Android robot urinating on the Apple logo.
It’s not really there – although given that the world’s most wanted man Osama bin Laden was able to hide in Pakistan seemingly undetected for so long, maybe it is…
David Buchanan, 34, of Royal Wootton Bassett, England, was watching porn at home. His mind wondered: what would it be like to have sex with a dog? So. He tried it out with the nearest dog he could get, a 10-month-old Rhodesian Ridgeback. And he recorded it. He then accidentally sent the footage to his girlfriend because the device he was on was linked to her cloud account.
She called the police.
In court, Buchanan pleased guilty to sexual assault. He is now on the sex offenders’ register for seven years and embarking on 50 days of rehabilitation.
Spotter: Daily Dot
Robots are just great. The can help defuse bombs, find people trapped under rubble and provide defence when hazard chamicals have been spilled. They can also watch you and control you.
In the Congo, solar-powered aluminium robots are huge loom over the roads in Kinshasa. Equipped with red and green lights these robots regulate the flow of people and traffic and film the scenes, relaying pictures back to police HQ.
But not as creepy as the Knightscope K5 is a five-foot-tall autonomous robot “that roams around your neighborhood, observing and gathering data and trying to predict where and when criminal activity will occur.”
Paul Detrick points us towards other creepy robots in this film:
Rose Evelth has news for woman in science:
man’s crew member’s work is never done:
Or ‘guide’ as the Chrome auto-demanner says…