Technology | Anorak - Part 17

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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.

Bad Translations: Fingers Ready For The Pony Game

BAN this sick filth:

finger your pnies


Posted: 16th, November 2013 | In: Technology | Comment

Tesco Sold Clay iPad To Kent Baker (Then Police Arrested Him For Fraud)

clay ipad

“I COUDN’T believe it when I saw what was inside the box. Maddie was devastated,” says Colin Marsh, who paid £470 for at Tesco in Whitstable, Kent. “I took it back to Tesco, but they said they couldn’t give me a refund and would need to carry out an investigation. Two days later, I got a call at about 8pm from the police asking if I could come down to the station to answer some questions. I just thought they wanted to know what had happened, but the next thing I know I’m being bundled into a cell. I was in there for three hours. It was then they told me the iPad had been activated in my name. I just thought ‘how can that possibly be?’ It didn’t make any sense.

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Posted: 16th, November 2013 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment

Tesco Stars In An Unusual C-Word Conversation On Twitter

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That’s how it began. And then it got weird.

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Posted: 14th, November 2013 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment

Desperate Tweeting – Kellogs: Tony The Tigers Remembers The Grrrrrreat War

THE Twitter account for @KelloggsUK has message from a tame feline who want vulnerable kids to eat lots of sugar and salt for breakfast. All it takes is a retweet:



Posted: 11th, November 2013 | In: Reviews, Technology, The Consumer | Comment

How Long Before Facebook Goes The Way Of MySpace? Ask The Teens


SO. Here’s an interesting little question. We’ve had several waves of social media sites already and none of them has really lasted more than a few years. Friends Get Divorced did ferociously well until it was passed by MySpace, which itself was rather pushed out of the way by Bebo which was then in turn flattened by Facebook. And we could think that Facebook will now rule the roost forever because it’s just so darn big: or we might think that we’re just waiting for the cool kids to find somewhere else to go.

Over at The Guardian they’ve found just the one line which makes it possible that it will be the latter:

Facebook made a startling admission in its earnings announcement this month: it was seeing a “decrease in daily users, specifically among teens”. In other words, teenagers are still on Facebook; they’re just not using it as much as they did. It was a landmark statement, since teens are the demographic who often point the rest of us towards the next big thing.

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Posted: 11th, November 2013 | In: Money, Technology | Comment

Flashback To 1967: African Schoolteacher Sanderson Chirambo And His Man-Powered Aircraft “Limba IV”

FLASHBACK: African schoolteacher Sanderson Chirambo is with his man-powered aircraft “Limba IV” on the road at Glenara Estates African School, 10 miles from Salisbury, Rhodesia on March 15, 1967, before his attempt to become the first man to fly successfully a man-powered aircraft. His machine  – a  bicycle fitted with a 12 foot aluminium wing and tailplane – failed to leave the ground. After the attempt Sanderson shook his head sadly and said: ““It’’s the same problem I’’ve faced all along. It’’s much to heavy.”

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Posted: 11th, November 2013 | In: Flashback, Technology | Comment

Video Dating In 1957 At The Radio and Television Fair

ON August 21 1957, visitors to the Radio and Television Fair watched the effect of their words on a TV telephone set up in Frankfurt, West Germany. Phones used for calls were linked to four TV sets and two cameras so each person can see a picture of himself and the person he is talking to. The AP reported: “There is no telling what effect the TV telephone will have on what people say and how they do it when they call.”

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We wonder…



Posted: 10th, November 2013 | In: Flashback, Technology, The Consumer | Comment

Belarus Dash Cam Records Speeding Horse And Cart Running Into Car

MEANWHILE in Belarus… dash cams are recording the unusual:

Posted: 10th, November 2013 | In: Technology | Comment

Video Game Violence: Preparing To Be Bad On Mortal Combat vs. DC Universe


DOES playing violent videos games make you violent?

Christian Happ and his colleagues recruited 60 students (20 men) with varied video gaming experience and had them spend 15 minutes playing the violent and bloody beat-em-up game Mortal Combat vs. DC Universe on the Playstation 3. Some of the participants played the morally good character Superman, while the others played the Joker, the baddie from Batman. Apart from that, the game experience was the same for all participants – their time was spent in hand-to-hand combat against a variety of other computer-controlled game characters.

Another twist to the experiment was that before the game began half the participants read a bogus Wikipedia article about their character, designed to encourage them to empathise with him. For those playing Superman, the article said how he’d come from a loving family. The Joker article described how he’d suffered abuse in his childhood.

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Posted: 10th, November 2013 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment

“Roka-Kinne Third-Dimensional Television Debuts In 1953


Third-Dimensional Television 1953:

This is third-dimensional television, as transmitted in a test by the North West German radio television studio in Berlin on Nov. 9, 1953. Two images are transmitted, as in all true 3-D processes. They are blended into one picture through the use of special polarized glasses, lying in front of the television set. At left is a mask with which to cover the screen for a more clear-cut, called “Roka-Kinne,” was developed by Robert Karst of Berlin (27 Gneisenau St.) He says standard transmitters and receivers are used.

It never did catch on.

Posted: 9th, November 2013 | In: Flashback, Technology | Comment

Blind From Birth: Tommy Edison And Austin Seraphin Explain What It’s Like

tommy edison

TOMMY Edison, who has been blind since birth, talks about what it was like growing up without sight.

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Posted: 9th, November 2013 | In: Technology | Comment

What’s The Worst Part About Working At Google? The People Are Too Smart And Talented


WHAT’S  the worst part about working at Google ? That question was posed to readers of Business Insider. Some answers err on the creepy side of Norman Bates’ slippers. A selection now follow:


When it’s standard to be awesome, and the work isn’t particularly tough to begin with, it’s hard to differentiate…

Some people end up losing their drive by working at Google. They get accustomed to not trying their hardest, but still having an awesome day-to-day life.

Some caveats: Many Googlers are clearly among the brightest in the world in their field, and they’re able to run full stride in their work. If you take your career into your own hands, you can find a role that challenges and stretches you as much as any other job in the world.

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Posted: 4th, November 2013 | In: Money, Reviews, Technology | Comment

Deliberate Planned Obsolescence In Apple’s iPhones? New York Times Spreads Conspiracy Theory

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DOES Apple lace its products with deliberate planned obsolescence? Err, no, despite the claims there isn’t any deliberate planned obsolescence in Apple’s iPhones. So much so that it’s really rather amazing that the New York Times published a piece even suggesting that there is.

Apple could be deliberately making your iPhone slower when a new model comes out, an influential tech columnist has claimed.

Catherine Rampell, who writes in the New York Times, said that Apple could be engineering the new operating system so it only works properly with the newest version of the product.

She added her iPhone 4 became a lot slower when she downloaded iOS 7 – and that the only solution seemed to be to buy the iPhone 5.

Rampell accused Apple of having run out of ideas so was trying to ‘brainwash’ its customers into buying the new iPhone 5S and 5C because they look nice.

Rampell’s claims are likely fuel conspiracy theorists who have long held that Apple engages in ‘planned obsolescence’, a term which has been around since the Great Depression in the 1930s.

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Posted: 4th, November 2013 | In: Money, Technology | Comment

Chinese Official Shrinks 103-Year-Old Woman In Epic Photoshop Fail

old lady
TO Ningguo, a city in Anhui province, China, to see Chinese Communist Party official and deputy mayor Wang Ju meet an elderly constituent. You can see this photo of Wang meeting the 103-year-old Cheng Yanchun in his in-house organ at the Civil Affairs Department, which he is in charge of.
Wow. She sure is small.

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Posted: 31st, October 2013 | In: Politicians, Technology | Comment

31p Will Make Your iPhone Able To Read Your Emotions

anorak-emoticonAre you disappointed that your iPhone can’t tell if you’re happy? Well that can be remedied by plugging in 31p of sensors to an iPhone 5S and letting it monitor your heartbeat.

The strategy director of a  chip company – Freescale Semiconductor’s Kaivan Karimi explained how for a fifty cents your device can be trained to know what you’re thinking before you do. Speaking at the Gigaom conference this week in San Francisco, he explained how it’s just about measuring your pulse, and your sweat:

“your device will know you significantly better than you do, or than your loved ones do. This will lead a lot of good stuff.”

Heartrate from emotion is different from heartrate from exercise, Mr Karimi says – so once you have those you can pretty much monitor what a person’s emotions are.

By making a watch that can take readings of the pulse and skin moisture on your wrist, and linking it up to your iPhone, the device will be able to “read your mind”, Mr Karimi said.

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Posted: 30th, October 2013 | In: Technology | Comment

Brit Arrested For “Pwning” US Government, Tripped Up By Named Paypal Account…



A British man threatened to “pwn” US government web services before uploading a mocking video to a government website, and stealing the personal details of FBI agents, court documents allege.

Lauri Love, 28, of Suffolk, was arrested yesterday morning under the Computer Misuse Act by the UK’s National Crime Agency and was released on bail until February 2014. The former Glasgow University student is the son of a vicar in Suffolk, the Telegraph reports. The Mail says that Mr Love was a leading member of the Occupy movement who carried out his sophisticated attacks from his parents’ house.

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Posted: 29th, October 2013 | In: Technology | Comment

Apple Really Is Dodging Taxes You Know!


THERE’S been intensive debate….well, let’s call that screaming matches….about whether Apple is avoiding tax or not. Everyone points to the Double Irish with a Dutch Sandwich as irrefutable proof that they’re skiving swine.

The thing is that this isn’t tax avoidance. It’s most certainly not tax evasion for as all agree it’s wholly and entirely legal. But it’s not even tax avoidance: for this is how the corporate tax system is set up to work: this is how it was designed. Companies, when they sell overseas, are taxed on the profits they make in their home country. That’s it, that’s all. And Apple will indeed be taxed on their overseas profits as and when they take those profits back into the US. That’s also just it: there is no more to the story than that. At the very best the entire structure delays the payment of tax: but it most certainly does not mean that the tax has been avoided.

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Posted: 29th, October 2013 | In: Money, Technology | Comment

Samsung Is Making Augmented Reality Glasses For Sport. What Sports?

SAMSUNG wants to put its computers on your face. And has just landed a patent for a new device that will do just that.

Google has staked out the space of face computers and though little demonstrable desire has been expressed for the devices – its Google Glass has been the poster child for the technology.

The idea is you walk around with a pair of glasses with a built-in computer that sits on top of one of your ears. The lenses are transparent screens through which you see the world, but also any stuff that Google wants to push on there, weightloss adverts, vouchers, that kind of thing. You know what Google likes to tell you about.

Samsung's new sports glasses, from the Korean patent

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Posted: 25th, October 2013 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment

Sexism: The Fault Is In Ourselves, Not Google’s Autocomplete

THIS is a rather fun finding, the UN has actually managed to do something both useful and interesting. There’s a piece in the Guardian about it here and the main page of the project is here.

What they’ve done is go to Google, typed in part of a query and seen how Google autocomplete finishes it off:

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Posted: 23rd, October 2013 | In: Money, Technology | Comment

Was iOS 7 created in Microsoft Word? An Exhausting Video

WAS iOS 7 created in Microsoft Word? Maybe. Vaclav Krejci has made an exhausting video of his duplication. Watching it is hard work but couples with the sound it is a challenge. Still, Vaclav is a true Anorak, a  master forger of the internet generation:

Posted: 22nd, October 2013 | In: Technology | Comment

LMFHO: Facebook Arousal Software Legitimately Executes People Enjoying Beheading Videos

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ON Facebook you can now watch videos of Kenneth Bigley, Eugene Armstrong and Jack Hensley being beheaded.

The one problem is that you must be 13 or older to view them. Only then will you be able to understand that the beheadings are not sensationalist and gory but presented in a way that will “condemn” rather than celebrate the acts. This way you will learn that beheading a man is wrong.

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Posted: 22nd, October 2013 | In: Technology | Comment