IDG Ventures Closes on $120 Million for Its Third Fund

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original IDG Ventures, an early-stage venture firm that was among the first VC outfits to plant its flag in San Francisco instead of Silicon Valley, has raised $120 million for its third and newest fund, according to cofounders Phil Sanderson and Alex Rosen. The two longtime VCs came together with a third partner, Pat Kenealy, in 2008; their previous fund closed with $100 million. IDG Ventures is… Read More

Twitter tests Snapchat-style photo filters for the VMAs and US Open

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You may have been too focused on Kanye West’s presidential run to notice last night, but Twitter is experimenting with Snapchat-style, location-based photo and video filters around big events. TechCrunch spotted a series of tweets from VMA nominees including Taylor Swift, Pharrell Williams, and and Big Sean featuring VMA-related stickers. Big Sean posted a moon man icon on one of his tweets; Pharrell showcased the official hashtag; and Swift appeared to get not one but two special stickers devoted to her songs: one for “Bad Blood,” and a pair of wild animals for “Wildest Dreams.” Then today Twitter showed off some new filters in a blog post about the US Open, including one in which someone had drawn a happy face on the photo.

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Apple is reportedly planning to make its own movies and TV shows

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Apple is in talks as part of a possible move into producing its own original programming, Variety reports. According to the publication, the company is looking to start hiring for a new development and production division in the next few months that would go into operation next year, producing content to rival streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. It’s not clear whether this new division would produce TV shows, movies, or both, but a unit within the Apple has reportedly already entered discussions with Hollywood executives, reporting back to Eddy Cue.

Variety says that Apple’s plans are in the early stages, but that the company has increased its interest in producing its own TV shows or movies in recent months, making an…

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Watch This Guy Fly In A 54-Propeller Super Drone

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mlZ1zD Flying drones are all the rage right now. The latest DJI Phantom is smoking hot. But sitting in your very own one and flying it? That’s uncharted territory…until now. Check out this dude in the UK hovering above the earth in a contraption with “54 counter-rotation propellers and six grouped control channels with Hobbyking stabilization.” It’s hard to tell just… Read More

Samsung officially announces the Gear S2 smartwatch

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After briefly teasing it on stage earlier this month, today Samsung has released more details about its coming Gear S2 smartwatch. Unfortunately, the company is still withholding crucial information like pricing and release date — but those probably aren’t too far off. We’re not even yet positive which phones it works with; if history is any indication, it’ll be limited to Samsung’s more recent devices. In today’s press release, Samsung has revealed that its latest Tizen-powered watch will come in two models: the regular Gear S2 and a Gear S2 classic, which is aimed at consumers who “prefer more timeless watch design.”

Gear S2 Classic features a black finish with a matching leather band, so it’s being positioned to take on high-end…

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Google+ Collections is now on iOS

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Three months after Google introduced Google+ Collections, the feature is now available on iOS, Google announced in a blog post today. With this update, iOS users who still use Google+ can now curate their feeds, filling them with images and conversations specific to their interests.

While the update might be helpful to users who have stuck around, Google+ seems to largely be a sunken ship. Google no longer requires users to create Google+ accounts, and earlier this year, split off Photos and Hangouts to see if the two could make it as standalone products. Collections is one of the company’s surviving ideas for the new Google+, which is supposed to be a network organized around specific interests. Also, it’s basically like Pinterest.

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The New Nintendo 3DS with swappable faceplates is coming to the US

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Soon you’ll finally be able to change the faceplates on a Nintendo 3DS. Today the company announced that the New Nintendo 3DS — which was previously available in Japan and features swappable faceplates, in addition to improvements like face-tracking 3D and built-in NFC capabilities — will launch in the US as part of a bundle with Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer. The handheld, the game, two faceplates, and an amiibo card will be available on September 25th for $219.99. Nintendo previously released the larger New Nintendo 3DS XL, which has the same features but no removable faceplates, in North America back in February alongside the 3DS release of The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask. No word yet on when the smaller version will be…

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Samsung Announces The Samsung Gear S2, Now More Round

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Samsung product image-1 Samsung has just announced their new smartwatch, the Samsung Gear S2. The watch is unique in that it has a round rotating bezel – the thing on the edge of the crystal – in addition to two buttons on the side for home and back. It runs Samsung’s Tizen OS, a system used by Samsung in their original Gear models. Samsung, however, isn’t announcing compatibility today… Read More

The Real Unicorns Are Female Angel Investors

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unicorn Despite the attention over the past year, the lack of diversity in tech — both in race and gender — has not markedly changed. Only 3 percent of tech CEOs are women, and just 15 percent of startups have at least one female founder. Most agree that something needs to be done, but much of the attention is misplaced into a caricature. What’s missing? The role of women as angel… Read More

Ashley Madison Says Business Is Booming

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6907410218_54610ba649_k (1) If you felt bad for the folks who work at “discreet encounter” site Ashley Madison, don’t. They’re just fine, apparently. According to this lovely press release, the company behind Ashley Madison, Avid Life Media, has had “hundreds of thousands of morons who want their info stolen people sign up for the service” since the hack heard round the world. Tons… Read More

Netflix Is Becoming Just Another TV Channel

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An anonymous reader writes: Netflix revealed in a blog post that it will not renew its contract with Epix, meaning you won’t be able to watch movies like The Hunger Games and World War Z through the service anymore. With the increase in cord-cutters and more original content, Netflix is positioning itself to be like any other TV channel (one that owns its own distribution model) and is betting that customers won’t miss the Epix content. Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos says, “While many of these movies are popular, they are also widely available on cable and other subscription platforms at the same time as they are on Netflix and subject to the same drawn out licensing periods.”

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Google’s tiny self-driving cars are coming to Austin

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Google is expanding the testing of its self-driving cars to Austin, Texas. These aren’t the retrofitted Lexus SUVs that have been in Austin since July, we’re talking about the tiny, adorable prototypes that Google unveiled back in 2014. The expansion marks the first time that these prototypes will be tested outside of Silicon Valley.

Texas doesn’t have any legislation on the books that allows the testing of autonomous vehicles (Nevada, Florida, California, and Michigan are the only ones that do), but Google worked with the governor, Austin’s mayor and police chief, and the Texas Department of Transportation in order to start testing its self-driving Lexuses there this summer. That groundwork helped pave the way for this next round of…

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Google’s Self-Driving Car Tests Continue In Austin, Sans Humans (And Don’t Worry, It Can Handle Deer)

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Screen Shot 2015-08-31 at 1.23.11 PM Google announced in July that it’d be taking its self-driving car test on the road…to beautiful Austin. It has done just that, and the company looks to be expanding the tests it’s doing as well. Texas is the fifth state to legalize the self-driving technology. According to Google, the tests are now involving those little tiny two-seat “Google Cars” and this time… Read More

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