Since season 1, Jessica Jones has struggled to mix horror with superheroes

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Significant spoilers ahead for season 1 of Jessica Jones.

The horror and superhero genres approach the world from opposite directions. Horror is meant to make the audience feel disempowered and terrorized. Superhero stories, by contrast, make viewers feel empowered and triumphant. Both genres often set out to give the audience the same thing — a big, satisfying burst of catharsis — but in different ways, and for different reasons.

But at the same time, the genres draw liberally from each other. To heighten the empowerment sensation, the superhero genre often uses horror elements. In the recent film Shazam!, the hero is menaced by oozing, hulking nightmare monsters, and his victory is sweeter because he’s initially terrified by what he…

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Would Facebook be better if we paid for it?

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Is the advertising model that allows our use of Facebook to be free actually the thing that’s wrong with Facebook? If we all just paid a subscription fee each month, would that solve some of the issues and concerns with privacy, data, and so on?

Here is a lightly edited excerpt of Verge senior editor Casey Newton speaking with Facebook executives Adam Mosseri and Andrew Bosworth onstage at Code Conference in Phoenix, Arizona, about whether a subscription model would solve anything for Facebook users.

You can hear this and more in the latest episode of The Vergecast.

Casey Newton: What do you make of the argument that companies that have advertising-based business models in this space are just, sort of, doomed to create products that…

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The science behind those viral videos of freezing soap bubbles

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It took a YouTube video, a walk-in freezer kept at negative 20 degrees Celsius, and some very cold-tolerant engineering students for researchers to finally figure out why freezing soap bubbles resemble glitter in a snow globe. The trick itself is a popular winter science experiment when temperatures dip below freezing: head outside, blow a soap bubble, gently plop it onto some snow or ice, and watch as crystals dance around on the film until the entire thing is a delicate ice ball. It’s visually stunning — but until very recently, people didn’t know exactly why bubbles freeze in this particular, mesmerizing way.

Normally, when a drop of water or a puddle freezes, it starts solidifying into ice at the coldest spot, where it comes in…

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PowerPoint will listen to rehearsals to help you stop swearing and stuttering

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Microsoft is adding an artificial intelligence-powered assistant to PowerPoint, to help improve people’s presentations. The new feature, dubbed Presenter Coach, will appear during a rehearsal mode for PowerPoint slides and offer feedback on your presentation skills by listening to audio from your computer’s microphone. Presenter Coach will pop up with tips about pacing and filler words so you’re not muttering or stuttering through a presentation, and also help presenters be more inclusive with their language, with suggestions like police officer instead of policeman.

If you swear during a presentation it will suggest that you don’t use profanity, and it will even highlight culturally insensitive phrases or alert you if you’re just lazily…

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The Fujifilm X-T2 mirrorless camera body is cheaper than ever

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Fujifilm’s X-T2 mirrorless camera body is $799 at B&H Photo and Amazon as the company (most likely) clears out its remaining stock of the 2016 model. The X-T2 regularly sold for $1,599 sans lens, though in months past, it briefly found its way down to around $900.

Now that it’s selling for $799, and likely to remain at that price until stock runs out, this might be a good time to consider it. The Verge’s Chris Welch reviewed the X-T2 when it was first released, and though it has likely seen the last of its firmware updates and favor has shifted to Fujifilm’s newer X-T3, this is still a great camera that’s easy to use, featuring buttons and dials that ensure expert control over your images.

Note: This price is for the body only. You’ll…

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LG’s 5G-equipped V50 ThinQ is coming to Verizon on June 20th

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Verizon is getting another 5G phone for its fledging network: LG’s V50 ThinQ, which will launch on June 20th, via Android Police.

The V50 released in the US last month as Sprint’s first 5G phone, and while we’ve known since it was first announced that it would be making its way to Verizon at some point over the summer, today’s announcement has finally given us the official release date.

The Verizon model appears to be nearly identical to the Sprint version, although it appears that Verizon has swapped in its specific 5G logo on the back of the device (no word yet as to whether it too will light up like the Sprint model’s logo.)

That means that spec-wise, you’ll be getting a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, 6GB of RAM,…

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John Wick Hex turns you into a cold, calculated killer

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One night, game designer Mike Bithell and a friend went out to see a largely forgettable action movie, and afterwards the conversation shifted to what, exactly, made John Wick so engrossing. Bithell’s friend, Ben Andac, who previously worked as a producer at Sony, then asked Bithell an exciting question: what would he do with the John Wick license? After thinking about it, Bithell realized he’d want to create a strategy game as opposed to a first-person shooter, giving players a chance to occupy Wick’s fast-moving analytical brain.

“I thought we were just bullshitting about cinema” says Bithell, whose previous work includes the charming platformer Thomas Was Alone and the stealth strategy game Volume. What the designer didn’t know was…

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The tiny Palm phone can now be bought unlocked and used on AT&T and T-Mobile

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The diminutive Palm phone is now getting an unlocked version sold directly through the resurrected Palm, making it available to everyone — not just Verizon customers.

The move marks the latest expansion for the shrunken down Android device, which launched first as a companion device meant to be used alongside your regular smartphone. Verizon would then go on to sell it as a standalone, $350 smartphone a few months later, and now, with an unlocked model, customers on AT&T, T-Mobile, and other carriers will be able to use it too simply by swapping their SIM.

Unfortunately, as The Verge’s Dieter Bohn noted in his review the Palm phone isn’t a particularly good phone, either as a companion device or a full-fledged phone — and especially…

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A light-up keyboard from Roli teaches you to play piano like it’s Guitar Hero

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Many people try to learn an instrument at one point or another in their life, and for a lot of us that instrument is the piano. But when you give up learning there’s no easy way back — not without paying for expensive lessons at least.

Music hardware startup Roli wants to change this with the launch of Lumi: a 24-key, light-up keyboard and companion app that teaches users how to play the piano from scratch, before transforming into a tool for jamming and even composition.

The keyboard and companion app are available to preorder on Kickstarter today with a base price of $249 and early bird sales as cheap as $150. Shipping starts in October.

Credit: Roli

A companion app teaches you to play without sheet music.

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Wacom releases rechargeable Bamboo Ink Plus for Windows 10 tablets

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Wacom is releasing a new stylus for pen-enabled Windows 10 PCs that adds tilt support and a rechargeable battery. The new stylus, the Bamboo Ink Plus, supports both the Microsoft Pen Protocol (MPP) and the Wacom Active ElectroStatic (AES) protocol, meaning the stylus is compatible with devices from the MPP-supported Microsoft Surface laptops to the AES-supported Lenovo Thinkpad series of tablets. Users can switch to different protocols easily by holding both side buttons.

Unlike the previous Bamboo Ink, which required hard-to-find AAAA batteries, the Ink Plus is rechargeable via USB. Like the previous model, the Plus also has three different fine nibs (soft, medium, and firm), and has a triangular barrel which some artists find more…

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Nintendo’s mobile Dr. Mario is coming out in a few weeks

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Nintendo has announced the release date for its latest mobile game. Dr. Mario World will be available for iOS and Android on July 10th, with pre-registration now open on the iOS App Store and Google Play. The title was first revealed in January.

A new trailer posted today gives the first real look at the game, which appears to be pretty different from other versions of Dr. Mario. Instead of managing capsules as they fall down the screen Tetris-style, Dr. Mario World sees you drag them directly onto the pre-arranged play field.

The game also has typical free-to-play mobile trappings like countdown timers and multiple currencies, but a puzzle game like Dr. Mario might at least be a better fit for that sort of thing than Mario Kart, which…

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Apple is adding picture-in-picture mode to the Apple TV

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Apple seemingly left one new, upcoming tvOS feature out of the company’s WWDC keynote earlier this month: picture-in-picture. 9to5Mac reports that today’s developer beta of tvOS 13 allows Apple TV users to shrink down any video playing in the Apple TV app to a corner of the screen and continue browsing through other content and menus — while still watching whatever video was originally playing. Unfortunately a public beta for tvOS 13 isn’t yet available and is expected in July.

For now, picture-in-picture is said to be limited to the Apple TV app, but hopefully the same functionality comes to Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and other popular streaming services. If nothing else, it’d allow you to start watching something “eh” and dig…

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No, Elon Musk did not delete his Twitter account

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I am now being subjected to headlines like “Elon Musk ‘deletes’ Twitter account after bizarre video game fan art scandal” because apparently journalists in the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand and Nineteen can’t wrap their brains around shitposting. If you can see Elon Musk’s Twitter account, he has not deleted it.

This is almost too stupid to explain, so I actually wasn’t going to bother. But Bloomberg decided to make a video out of it and Mashable’s headline confused at least one of my coworkers into asking me if it was true. (AP’s headline is slightly better: “Elon Musk Says He Is Deleting His Twitter Account.” It would be improved thus: “Elon Musk Tweets That He Deleted His Twitter Account.”)

Here…

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This dongle adds USB and microSD storage to your phone charger

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Sanho’s Hyper brand has brought us some pretty clever solutions to the shortcomings of today’s smartphones, laptops and tablets for years now, including a sleek, charger-mounted USB-C hub for MacBooks and wireless charging for AirPods before that was cool. By comparison, their latest is a little bit derivative — but it could be a handy way to automatically backup your iOS or Android device when you plug it in at night.

The company’s new crowdfunded project is called the HyperCube, and it’s a USB dongle that lets your phone charger double as a storage device. Drop it into your charger, pop in a microSD card, USB flash drive, or even an external hard drive into one of its full-size female USB ports, stick your charge cable into the other,…

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Adobe’s next iPad drawing app is called Adobe Fresco

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Adobe’s upcoming iPad drawing and painting app will be called Adobe Fresco, the company announced today on its blog. Previously called Project Gemini, the app will arrive sometime later this year.

Named after the Italian Renaissance-style painting technique of applying water-based pigments to wet plaster, Adobe Fresco’s main selling point is its Live Brushes, which mimic the way paint would mix and blend in real life. Adobe’s chief product officer, Scott Belsky, writes that Live Brushes use Adobe Sensei, the company’s AI platform, to recreate how oils and watercolors bloom and react with each other.

The app also lets artists draw with vector and raster brushes, combining the features of the Adobe Illustrator Draw and…

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You can still save $200 on a Samsung Galaxy S10E

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Father’s Day 2019 has passed, but some great deals that we saw last week are still happening. For example, you can save $200 on a Samsung Galaxy S10E, S10, or S10 Plus, the lowest prices that we’ve seen for these phones, which are unlocked and don’t require activation. The Google Pixel 3 XL with $300 knocked off of its price ($599.99 at checkout) isn’t too bad, either, though it’s a harder sell since the Google Pixel 4 has been revealed — by Google itself.

It’s not just phones that you can save on, Microsoft’s Xbox One consoles are cheaper than usual this week, discounting both its powerful, 4K-ready Xbox One X and the disc drive-less Xbox One S All-Digital console. If you preorder a game at Target, you can save 30 percent on a game…

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The Hunger Games is getting a prequel next year, set 64 years before the first book

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Suzanne Collins is bringing back The Hunger Games, with the author announcing a new prequel novel that takes place 64 years before the events of the first book in the series, set for release on May 19th, 2020.

“With this book, I wanted to explore the state of nature, who we are, and what we perceive is required for our survival,” Collins said in an announcement to AP. “The reconstruction period 10 years after the war, commonly referred to as the Dark Days — as the country of Panem struggles back to its feet — provides fertile ground for characters to grapple with these questions and thereby define their views of humanity.”

The time period isn’t one we know much about from Collins’ existing…

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Watch Adam Savage make a flying Iron Man suit in his new show, Savage Builds

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Adam Savage became a household name as the cohost of Mythbusters, and now, he’s returned to the Discovery Channel with a new show: Savage Builds. In each episode of the series, Savage goes out and builds something, consulting with other experts and builders. The series just began airing on Discovery, and the first episode, in which he builds a flying Iron Man costume, is available for free online (at least in the US) for the next two weeks.

Think of it like a builder’s version of Mythbusters: take a thing from pop culture or history, and make a version that functions as closely as possible to its on-screen counterpart. In the show’s first episode, Savage sets out to build a real, flying Iron Man costume that’s also bulletproof.

To do…

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