In BirdGut, you try to escape a dystopian society inside a bird’s stomach

See the original posting on The Verge

It can be difficult to find time to finish a video game, especially if you only have a few hours a week to play. In our biweekly column Short Play we suggest video games that can be started and finished in a weekend.

I’ve written about a number of weird games for Short Play, but BirdGut might have the strangest premise so far. It’s about a disabled bee who is kicked out of their hive after being born. The bee manages to make its way through the world, despite not being able to fly, but eventually it’s eaten by a bird. It turns out that the bird isn’t eating insects for sustenance, but rather to brainwash them into mindless slaves who help operate and maintain the machinery inside the bird that keeps it alive. Due to the bee’s bent-over…

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Apple’s abacus emoji is wrong

See the original posting on The Verge

Apple’s abacus emoji is wrong. Or, technically not “wrong” per se, in that you can probably still use it do math if you actually know how to use an abacus (I do not). But still, that ever useful emoji — added in the Unicode 11.0 update to the emoji standards as part of iOS 12 — is apparently incorrect on Apple devices when compared to nearly any abacus used across the whole of human civilization.

The error was first spotted by Twitter user @sophophobic, who noticed that Apple’s abacus configuration appeared to be one that was never used at any point in history.

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Catch Memorial Day deals on this Bluetooth audio gear

See the original posting on Boing Boing

Need to upgrade your sound? Bluetooth technology has never been better, but that’s not the only reason to look into a new set of speakers or headphones. We found ten pieces of audio gear that are already on sale, and you can take an additional 15% off the final price for Memorial Day weekend by using the promo code WEEKEND15.

B&O H4 Bluetooth Over-Ear Headphones

No matter where you’re going, you’ve got options with these great-looking headphones. They connect either by Bluetooth or audio cable and provide up to 19 hours of listening time on a charge. B&O H4 Bluetooth Over-Ear Headphones are priced now at $179.99, a 39% discount. Take an additional 15% off with coupon code WEEKEND15. 

OontZ Angle 3 Splash-Proof Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Perfect for beach parties, this Bluetooth speaker is protected by an IPX5 water-resistant shell. Through splashes, spills or even rain, it delivers up to 7 hours of music on a charge. Pick up the OontZ Angle 3 Splash-Proof Portable Bluetooth Speaker for $28.99, nearly 50% off the MSRP. Take an additional 15% off with coupon code WEEKEND15. 

Bluepot Bluetooth Speaker and Power Bank


This pocket-sized gadget pulls double duty as a speaker and charger, juicing up iPhones through a 10,000mAh power bank. While that’s charging, you can listen to crystal-clear audio thanks to the Bluepot’s Flat Core Speaker Technology. Right now, you can get the Bluepot Bluetooth Speaker and Power Bank for $34.99, more than 50% off the list price. Read the rest

Little Lamp To Learn Longer Leaps

See the original posting on Hackaday

Reinforcement learning is a subset of machine learning where the machine is scored on their performance (“evaluation function”). Over the course of a training session, behavior that improved final score is positively reinforced gradually building towards an optimal solution. [Dheera Venkatraman] thought it would be fun to use reinforcement learning …read more

Alexa announcements feature now works on every Alexa-compatible device

See the original posting on The Verge

Last year, Amazon rolled a new announcements feature for Echo devices, and later expanded it to Alexa-compatible Sonos speakers. Now, the feature can be used across all of the devices that utilize Alexa.

The feature essentially allows you to turn your Echo devices into an intercom system, and initially rolled out to the Echo, Echo Plus, Echo Dot, Echo Show, and Echo Spot. Users send out their announcement by saying “Alexa announce that / tell everyone / broadcast…”, and their message gets pushed out to all of the devices in your home network at the same time.

Amazon says that Announcements is “available for certified Alexa built-in products to implement and new ones that pass the provided self-tests and certification.” Now, the…

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A laptop filled with six of the world’s most dangerous viruses is on sale for more than $1 million

See the original posting on The Verge

Some of the world’s greatest artworks are known for their elaborate backstory or complex history, but not many are actively dangerous to those who own them. ‘The Persistence of Chaos’ might be an exception. Created by internet artist Guo O Dong, this piece of art is an ordinary laptop filled with six of the world’s most dangerous pieces of malware. It’s perfectly safe — as long you don’t connect to your Wi-Fi or plug in a USB.

Speaking to The Verge, artist Guo O Dong says the intention behind the laptop was to make physical the abstract threats posed by the digital world.

“We have this fantasy that things that happen in computers can’t actually affect us, but this is absurd,” says Guo….

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11 new trailers you should watch this week

See the original posting on The Verge

There’s a really fine balance between over explaining magical/mythical/sci-fi parts of a story, and leaving things too undefined for viewers to understand. I think it’s great when films live in that ambiguous in between, letting us imagine out some amount of specifics on our own, but a movie needs to provide the right guidance to let that happen.

I watched The Wailing a couple weeks ago, and I feel like it misses that mark while trying to create a fascinating, intricate, symbolism-laden world. I still loved the movie — it’s a very dark and very funny crime drama that becomes increasingly and fascinatingly mythical as the story goes on, and it caps things off with a climactic shot that I still can’t get out of my head. (For those who’ve…

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Netflix will release three mini-Black Mirror episodes on its Latin America YouTube channel

See the original posting on The Verge

Black Mirror’s fifth season will return to Netflix with three new episodes on June 5th, and to promote the return of the series, it will release a trio of extremely short episodes on its América Latina YouTube channel.

The three Little Black Mirror episodes will feature several YouTube stars from Latin America, according to Variety. Netflix approached the YouTubers ( Maia Mitchell, Rudy Mancuso, Juanpa Zurita, Lele Pons, Anwar Jibawi, Hannah Stocking, Jeff Wittek, Delaney Glazer and Alesso), to “create their own takes on Black Mirror. The episodes will be released on May 26th, June 2nd, and June 6th on the channel.

The next season of Black Mirror comes after Netflix released an interactive entry in the series, Bandersnatch. This new…

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Give your career a boost with these online training bundles that are 60% off

See the original posting on Boing Boing

Trying to earn a promotion? Memorial Day weekend might be a good place to start. There are tons of e-learning packages that can help you build professional skills a lot quicker (and cheaper) than any technical academy. Whether you want to earn IT certifications, learn to code, become a designer, or anything else, these comprehensive bundles are all on sale. Plus, you can take an additional 60% off the final price by entering the online code WEEKEND60.

The Complete 2019 CompTIA Certification Training Bundle

CompTIA certification is a big highlight on any IT resume, and this bundle gets you that certification in a wide range of skills. A fundamentals course gets you started, then you’ll move on to mastery in A+, Linux and cybersecurity practices, just to name a few. The Complete 2019 CompTIA Certification Training Bundle is currently $69, a full 97% off the MSRP. Take an additional 60% off with coupon code WEEKEND60. 

The Complete Start A Side Business Bundle

No matter what kind of product you’ve got to sell, this bundle will help you find a buyer online – even if that product is your talent. Each of these 12 lessons focuses on a different outlet for internet income, including Fiverr, eBay, Amazon Affiliates and much more. The Complete Start a Side Business Bundle is on sale for $25, 98% off the cost of the individual courses. Take an additional 60% off with coupon code WEEKEND60. 

AWS Solutions Architect Certification Bundle

Big companies need specialists who can build a cloud computing system, and the platform of choice to do that is Amazon Web Services. Read the rest

Business author Julian Guthrie on the biggest difference between ‘alpha’ men and women

See the original posting on TechCrunch

If you’ve been out and about in Silicon Valley in the last month or so, chances are you’ve heard of “Alpha Girls,” a new book written by longtime journalist Julian Guthrie about four investors who’ve made a big impact on the world of startup investing. The book recognizes them — Theresia Gouw, MJ Elmore, Sonja […]

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