Facebook now lets you shoot 360-degree photos inside its app

See the original posting on The Verge

Facebook has allowed users to upload and view 360-degree photos for a little over a year now, but the social media platform is also adding the ability to capture them, too. Starting today, both the iOS and Android versions of the Facebook app will allow users to create 360-degree photos without requiring a third-party app or camera.

Of course, since phones don’t have 360-degree cameras built in (yet, at least), the process resembles how you create panoramas in your phone’s camera app. To create 360-degree photos inside the Facebook app, scroll to the top of the News Feed and tap the “360 Photo” button. Then slowly spin around for a full turn, all while keeping the the graphic centered in the middle. When it’s finished, you can pick the…

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Samsung confirms it’s working on a smart speaker

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Samsung is already working on getting into the smart speaker market. DJ Koh, president of Samsung’s mobile division, confirmed the news to CNBC today at its Galaxy Note 8 event, saying the product would launch “soon.” That timeline isn’t specific, but at least it’s something. Koh says he’s already working on the device and wants to create a “fruitful user experience at home with Samsung devices, and [he] want[s] to be moving quite heavily on it.”

He didn’t say whether the speaker would feature the company’s new digital assistant, Bixby, but I think it’s safe to assume that would be the case. Samsung has already started including the assistant in its connected refrigerators and says it wants to eventually install it across its product…

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Only 3 more days to save on Disrupt SF tickets

See the original posting on TechCrunch

 Alright, would-be Disrupt attendees. We gave you an extra week to save $1,000 on Disrupt SF 2017 tickets, but this week we aren’t feeling so generous. You now have just three days left to get an early-bird ticket for $1,995 before prices jump to $2,995 after Friday. Seriously, no more extensions. This is it. This is your only chance. Get your tickets now. Read More

Red Dwarf XII slated for October

See the original posting on Boing Boing

Fun, fun, fun in the sun, sun, sun. Lister, Rimmer, Kryton and the show stealing Cat are back this October on Dave.

From the Red Dwarf blog:

Red Dwarf XII is the twelfth series of the legendary comedy, once again written and directed by Doug Naylor and following last year’s series XI, voted “Best Comedy of the Year” and “Best Returning Comedy” by British Comedy Guide. The original cast of Chris Barrie (Rimmer), Craig Charles (Lister), Danny John-Jules (Cat) and Robert Llewellyn (Kryten) are back for six brand new episodes recorded in front of a live studio audience at Pinewood Studios.

For the very first time, the rest of the crew discover just how it feels to be Kryten when they’re arrested by the Mechanoid Intergalactic Liberation Front. The Dwarfers come across a ship where criticism is illegal, and a space station where the crew have developed a cure for evil. When all the machines on Red Dwarf go on strike Rimmer and Kryten hold a Presidential election, while The Cat faces an identity crisis like never before when he discovers he needs glasses. Lister discovers a simple update of the ship’s latest software could be a matter of life or death. Finally, Rimmer decides to leave Red Dwarf in search of a parallel universe where he isn’t such a massive loser.

Featuring a whole host of star guests, smart sci-fi and ingenious comedy, Red Dwarf XII returns to Dave exclusively this October.

Coolest cat in the universe.

Snapchat is going to try to make original scripted shows again

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Snapchat wants to have its own original scripted shows by the end of this year. At the Edinburgh International Television Festival today, Snapchat’s head of content, Nick Bell, called scripted programming an “interesting next venture” for the company, Variety reports.

While Snapchat’s plans seem vague, focusing on scripted shows feels like an inevitable decision. Up until now, the company has mostly relied on networks with built-in audiences to create Snapchat-ready versions of already-popular TV shows. This year, Snapchat partnered with NBC for a news show and a series of Saturday Night Live shorts, with ABC for a Bachelor recap show, and with A&E for another reality show about dating.

Scripted,…

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Blizzard’s latest Overwatch short looks like it could have been made by Pixar

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Blizzard has premiered the latest Overwatch animated short at Gamescom, focusing on the ice-wielding hero, Mei.

“Rise and Shine” is the seventh short film the company has released so far set in the Overwatch world, joining “Recall,” “Alive,” “Dragons,” “Hero,” “Infiltration,” and “The Last Bastion.” The almost 10-minute-long video gives fans a deeper look into the backstory of Mei, who was cryogenically frozen for years while doing research in Antarctica, before rejoining the Overwatch organization in the present day. Like the other shorts, the level of quality in the animation really stands out. The company also released a new Hearthstone short, and it’s easy to mistake the animation at first glance for something at the level of, say,…

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Facebook now lets you take 360 photos in-app, use them as Cover Photos

See the original posting on TechCrunch

 Facebook has been a big supporter of 360-degree photos and video, adding support for the immersive media formats early on Facebook itself. Now, the social tech company is adding support for capturing 360-degree photos right within the Facebook app itself. The 360 photo capability is rolling out across both iOS and Android starting today, and includes the ability to zoom and tag friends.… Read More

Watch the first teasers for Netflix’s ‘Big Mouth’ cartoon series from Nick Kroll

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 NetComedian Nick Kroll has had a fairly successful track record, especially for fans of a certain kind of humor (the kind I like), so it’s exciting that he’s now creating an animated comedy series for Netflix. Kroll himself will voice many of the characters in the show, a coming-of-age tale aimed at adults, but he’s joined by a stocked cast of voice talent including John… Read More

Ollie, a purveyor of ‘human grade’ pet food, just landed $12.6 million in fresh funding

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 Ollie, a two-year-old, New York-based subscription service that sells what it calls human-grade pet food, has raised $12.6 million in Series A funding. The round was led by Canaan Partners, with participation from WME Ventures, Rosecliff Ventures, RiverPark Funds, Correlation Ventures and earlier backers Primary Venture Partners, Lerer Hippeau Ventures. It brings the company’s… Read More

Car repossession goes awry

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This astounding video advances one level at a time, from amusing to beautiful. First, bystander Brittany Nyiesha chances across a repossessed vehicle being towed and begins filming. Then we realize that it hasn’t been attached properly to the tow truck, but is instead being dragged on its rims. Then it blows through a stop light. Then the car starts flailing wildly, like a ball and chain attached to some huge street weapon in a Mad Max movie —what is going on? The Proper Authorities get involved! And it’s still only getting warmed up.

Video of the International Space Station passing in front of the solar eclipse

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=200&v=lepQoU4oek4

SmarterEveryDay’s Destin Sandlin captured this astonishing video of the International Space Station transiting Monday’s solar eclipse. Fast forward to 3:50 for the magical moment. And in case you missed it, below is NASA’s still photo of the ISS transiting the sun at five miles per second.

How to hear the true sound of your own voice without recording it

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When we speak, sing or shout, what we perceive gets a mighty bass boost from our own head matter. But what the lister (and the microphone) hears — the reedy, whiny, nasal true self! — is their reality. In this video, vocal coach Chris Beatty shows off a neat trick to cutting out the frequencies that only you hear, allowing you to train and temper your tone of speech as others hear it. All you need do it put two thick boards, magazines or notebooks either side of your face — but it’s nicer listening to him explain.

Friday Hack Chat: JavaScript on Microcontrollers

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Microcontrollers today are much more powerful and much more capable than the 8051s from back in the day. Now, they have awesome peripherals and USB device interfaces. It’s about time a slightly more modern language was used to program these little chips.

During this Friday’s Hack Chat, we’re going to be talking about JavaScript on microcontrollers. [Gordon Williams] will be joining us to talk about Espruino. This is a tiny JavaScript interpreter that runs on the little embedded chips, has a debug interface, and allows you to program your board on any platform without any external programming hardware.

[Gordon] is …read more

Modular Storage with Peanut Butter and Lasers

See the original posting on Hackaday

I have storage on the mind, and it comes from two facts in my life:

First, I have tons of stuff in my workshop, far too much for the amount of space I have. A lot of this material is much easier to use if it’s well-organized. Think electronics, robotics, building sets. Modular parts that need to go together a certain way for them to be useful. It is imperative, therefore, that I come up with some sort of organization system to keep the chaos in check.

Second, my favorite tool is the laser cutter, born from my love for …read more

Here’s how the Galaxy Note 8 stacks up against the iPhone 7 and Galaxy S8

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It’s been a long road for fans of Samsung’s Galaxy Note phones, but the Note 8 is finally here. Combining the stunning design of the S8 with the iconic S Pen and the biggest screen Samsung has ever put on a phone, the Note 8 looks like it could be the ultimate phablet-style device.

But it’s also true that it’s harder than ever to stand out in the smartphone industry. Looking at the lineup of the Note 8’s contemporaries, it’s hard to find things that are wholly unique to the Note. Nearly every flagship has a comparable Snapdragon 835 processor and tons of RAM, the Note 8 is by no means the first to have a dual-camera setup, and Samsung already makes a huge phone with a nearly…

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Samsung says Spotify support is coming to Bixby later this year

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Samsung announced today that users of its Bixby digital assistant will soon be able to use voice control to play music through Spotify. The news, announced by director of product marketing Jonathan Wong onstage at Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8 reveal, is a welcome addition to the list of Bixby integrations, which so far have been somewhat lacking since the product arrived in the US for the S8 and S8 Plus in July after months of delays.

Billed as a central hub for interacting with computing devices of all types, Bixby is Samsung’s all-in-one answer to Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. Samsung’s three-tier approach mixes a voice control interface for talking with your device, a computer vision system for identifying objects through the camera,…

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Samsung apologizes for the Note 7 again with a ridiculous hype reel for the Note 8

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Before Samsung announced the Galaxy Note 8 during its event in New York City today, it first addressed last year’s Note 7 battery mishap. This is not new. Samsung has spent the last year issuing conciliatory statements about its phone that repeatedly caught fire, as well as how poorly it acted in response to those failures. But this time around, the company opted for an uplifting tone, starting the whole event off with a sugary reel of supportive words from Note fans.

Opening the event this way was a sign that, in a post-Galaxy S8 world, Samsung feels comfortable enough to drop the apologetic tone. It was also a fairly shrewd marketing move. Note fans are a core group of customers that has always been important to Samsung since the…

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Samsung’s new Galaxy Note 8 customers get free in-home visits from HelloTech

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For the launch of its new Galaxy Note 8 smartphone, Samsung is — not surprisingly — doubling down on the whole support thing. New Note 8 buyers in the US will get 60 days free of Samsung Premium Care service, which normally costs $11.99 per device per month and includes everything light support to coverage for damage.

For the in-home support portion of the service, Samsung is relying on a lesser-known logistics startup based out of Los Angeles called HelloTech. And HelloTech is promising Note 8 customers that it will come to them whenever they have questions about their new phones, whether that that means visiting them at home, at work, or at a local coffee shop.

It’s a decidedly different approach from Apple’s support services, which…

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The Galaxy Note 8’s S Pen has new pen powers, including translation

See the original posting on TechCrunch

 Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8 comes with an S Pen, as have previous iterations, but it does a bit more than versions past. The new S Pen’s highlight feature might be its Live Messages ability, which creates shareable animations from handwriting and doodles so you can message and publish them wherever. The Note 8 S Pen also features a translation feature, which means you can highlight… Read More

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