Twitch and BBC will stream 500 classic episodes of Doctor Who

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BBC and Twitch Presents have partnered to bring the majority of Doctor Who’s classic episodes — the ones that aired between 1963 and ‘89 — to the live-streaming service’s platform, starting on May 29th and ending seven weeks later. If you missed out on the show or have been interested in the hype around it, now’s a good time to catch up on its earliest seasons and meet the older doctors.

Doctor Who has been around for 55 years, which is an astonishing feat for any television series, and its longevity means that it has literal generations of fans who have grown up with the show. And it’s only become more popular in recent years — though it’s also become harder to watch.

Before 2016, when Amazon bought exclusive rights from BBC to stream…

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Epic Bill Gates e-mail rant from 2003

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In 2003 Bill Gates tried to download Microsoft Movie Maker from His confusing, frustrating, futile experience prompted him to write a terrifically scorching email to the managers in charge of the project. It starts off pretty mild, with just a hint of the brutally funny sarcasm to come. (“I typed in movie maker. Nothing. So I gave up and sent mail to Amir saying – where is this Moviemaker download? Does it exist? So they told me that using the download page to download something was not something they anticipated.”) It gets better from there.

The best way to experience Bill’s rant is by listening to Dave Ross of KIRO-AM/710 in Seattle give a dramatic reading:

And if you read the finger-pointing, ass-covering, wheel-spinning internal email conversation between the people Bill flamed, you will understand why the product sucked so hard.

Hey, Bill, welcome to the Windows user experience! It reminds me of what I still have to go though every time I try to connect my kid’s Windows machine to a new hotspot.

Open Source Underwater Distributed Sensor Network

See the original posting on Hackaday

One way to design an underwater monitoring device is to take inspiration from nature and emulate an underwater creature. [Michael Barton-Sweeney] is making devices in the shape of, and functioning somewhat like, clams for his open source underwater distributed sensor network.

The clams contain the electronics, sensors, and means of descending and ascending within their shells. A bunch of them are dropped overboard on the surface. Their shells open, allowing the gas within to escape and they sink. As they descend they sample the water. When they reach the bottom, gas fills a bladder and they ascend back to the …read more

Memorial Day 2018: the best tech sales to shop this weekend

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Hopefully you’re spending the long weekend enjoying warm weather, but if you’re also in the market for some new gadgets, you may want to block off a few hours to check out all of the tech deals happening this weekend. It’s no Black Friday, but the internet’s next big sale event won’t be until Amazon Prime Day, which takes place in July (probably).

Many retailers have already started discounting some of our favorite tech, from TVs to laptops to headphones. We’ll be updating this post as new deals drop, so be sure to check back all weekend for the most up-to-date deals.


It’s not a Memorial Day deal, but when Amazon discounts its Kindle e-readers, it’s worth calling out. Today only, (Wednesday, May 23rd) you can pick up a standard K…

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Can you solve the wizard standoff riddle?

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Math 4 Love founder Dan Finkel writes:

You’ve been chosen as a champion to represent your wizarding house in a deadly duel against two rival magic schools. Your opponents are a powerful sorcerer who wields a wand that can turn people into fish, and a powerful enchantress who wields a wand that turns people into statues. Can you choose a wand and devise a strategy that ensures you will win the duel?


Beloved Kura Toga mechanical pencil on sale for $4.90

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Available as an add-on item on Amazon, this Kuru Toga pencil has a cool feature that rotates the lead incrementally every time you press it down on paper. That way, the tip stays nicely rounded. Here’s a video of the spring-loaded clutch mechanism in action:

The pencil also has a metal sleeve that protects the lead, sliding into the pencil as the lead gets shorter. The sleeve retracts completely so you can lug it in a bag without having to worry about it getting bent or breaking off.

How do pinball machine solenoids work?

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Solenoids are common electromechanical devices. They’re used in pinball machines to make the ball shoot away when they hit a bumper. If you’ve ever have the opportunity to touch an energized pinball bumper, you will immediately gain an appreciation for its explosive power.

In this video, famous hardware hacker Jeri Ellsworth takes apart a pinball machine solenoid to show how it works.

[via Hackaday]

Image: Youtube screenshot

Mechanisms: Solenoids

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Since humans first starting playing with electricity, we’ve proven ourselves pretty clever at finding ways to harness that power and turn it into motion. Electric motors of every type move the world, but they are far from the only way to put electricity into motion. When you want continuous rotation, a motor is the way to go. But for simpler on and off applications, where fine control of position is not critical, a solenoid is more like what you need. These electromagnetic devices are found everywhere and they’re next in our series on useful mechanisms.

A Coil and a Plunger

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Young girl shocks parents with hilarious answer to why people get married

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When parents ask their daughters why Prince Harry is getting married, the younger of the two says, “Harry is getting married because they want to get married.” But when asked what you do when you get married, the younger girl is stumped. That’s when her older sister jumps in with a hand gesture that could be interpreted as crude.

She points her index finger with one hand and sticks it into a circle made with the other hand. “Don’t do that!” a man – presumably her father – says. “Whoooa! What are you doing?” a woman – presumably her mother – says.

The girl responds with a heartwarming, logical and very innocent answer. Or, maybe the girl is just really great at thinking on her feet.

Boring company makes “the world’s most boring billboard” and promises to keep it up for 12 years

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Sioo:x Wood Protection is a boring company. That doesn’t mean its products aren’t important. It’s just hard to jump up and down with glee over wood protection. Nevertheless, the “world’s most boring billboard” that Sioo:x installed in Malmö, Sweden is pretty cool. It’s a triple sided outdoor display made of wood that’s been treated with preservative. The billboard will remain outdoors for 12 years as a way to demonstrate the effectiveness of Sioo:x’s treatment against long term exposure to the harsh environmental insults handed out by Sweden’s unforgiving weather.

Live Editing HTML and CSS With Chrome DevTools

See the original posting on DZone Python

Chrome DevTools is a powerful suite of web development tools built right into the Chrome browser. One of the most useful features of DevTools for web developers is the ability to live edit the HTML and CSS on a page. This functionality allows any developer, even those with weaker HTML and CSS knowledge, to quickly prototype and iterate on potential changes to a web page.

While working on Lucidchart, one of my recent projects was to add some check marks into the inputs where users fill in their billing information in order to convey immediate feedback when the users entered properly formatted and valid information. Even though I am more comfortable working in our backend code than I am with CSS and HTML, I was able to easily implement these check marks with the power of live editing.

Acer’s new Predator Helios 500 is a 17.3-inch gaming laptop with Intel’s best chips

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<em>Acer Helios 500.</em>

Acer has announced a new gaming powerhouse today with the Helios 500, which is a bigger, more powerful version of the Helios 300 model it released last year. It bumps the screen size up to 17.3-inches and includes options for even more powerful graphics cards and processors.

The Helios 500 has the choice of either a 4K or 1080p 144Hz display (both with Nvidia G-Sync), and it can be configured with up to an Intel Core i9+ 8950HK processor, GTX 1070 GPU with 8GB of memory, and 64GB of RAM for the top-of-the-line model. Like Acer’s other gaming laptops, the Helios 500 uses the company’s “Dual AeroBlade 3D fans” for what it claims to be improved cooling. And, of course, there’s plenty of LED lighting built in.

Acer also teased a new…

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Music production software Fruity Loops is now available for Mac

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FL Studio for Mac

Image-Line has just released the newest version of its Digital Audio Workstation FL Studio (Fruity Loops), and with it comes native Mac support for the first time since its creation in 1997, as reported by Pitchfork.

Although the ability to use the program on Mac is the biggest news, FL Studio 20 also includes other updates. This version has support for time signatures, freezing for clips in order to free up CPU, and the ability to have multiple “arrangements” so users can work with different versions of a project at one time.

The program is affordable in comparison to some other DAWs, and it has gained many prolific fans, like Martin Garrix, Metro Boomin, and Porter Robinson. The company initially said it had begun working on a Mac…

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YouTubers are hiding softcore porn behind fake diamond ads

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The YouTube video titled “Best Diamonds in the Sky – Jewelry of life Life insurance, Diamond of God #21” opens on what looks to be a poor-quality jewelry ad, panning slowly over diamond-encrusted cat figures, rings with enormous purple stones, and even Titanic’s flashy blue diamond. Then, around the two-minute mark, everything changes. The video inexplicably cuts to a shaky-cam clip overlooking a boat and then to videos of several young women undressing. While there’s no visible nudity, it’s a mix of provocative close-ups zooming in on their scantily clad breasts and butts while they sensually rub themselves.

There are thousands of these softcore videos on YouTube right now that are hidden under variations of “Best Diamonds in the Sky.”…

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Acer’s new Swift 5 cuts down on bezels with a bigger 15.6-inch screen

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Acer has just announced a new, updated version of its Swift 5 laptop, which follows the trend of 2018 laptops by cutting down on bezels. The company is swapping out the old 14-inch screen from previous models for a new 15.6-inch 1080p display that offers an 87.6 percent screen-to-body ratio.

Also new on the updated Swift 5 is the latest eighth-generation Intel processor, and a slimmed-down design, built from a magnesium and aluminum alloy. As for specs, the Swift 5 is configurable with up to 1TB of SSD storage and 16GB of RAM, although there are no details as to what the base configurations are or what specific processors Acer will be offering. On the port side of things, the Swift 5 offers two USB-C ports, two USB 3.1 Type-A ports, an…

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Adam Savage at Maker Faire: the importance of sharing

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Adam Savage gives a talk every year at Maker Faire. It’s one of the highlights at the Bay Area event. This year, Adam talked about why sharing is such an important part of the maker movement.

I’m here to defend sharing as a vital aspect of maker culture that is intrinsic to the underlying ethos of what it means to be a maker, and by extension, a human being.

Some people don’t want to share

I once attended a gallery show where the artist had done some fairly novel executions of portraits using common materials in a way that was really surprising. I asked them about their process and they told me they didn’t want to share it with me. They wanted to keep the technique a secret

At one point, when I was working in a special effects studio, a friend of mine was making these large round forms using a very specific set of techniques. He was doing it for a week and a half, and it was fascinating — all the levels that he went through. I asked him if I could take pictures of the process and he said yes, but he would withhold key parts of the information from me so that I could not learn how to do this. He considered it part of his job security

For years the makers of Barbie dolls have shut down any and all Barbie themed art shows and artwork. This is a grossly misguided form of copyright and trademark protection. It seems that they imagined somehow that they can dictate how people think about and discuss Barbie through their enforcement.

I disagree vehemently with this stance. I view it as antithetical to making as a practice, as a discipline, and to being a member of any community. As a member of a community of humans, art is one of the key ways in which we converse about the world and what is going on around us. Human progress is made not simply because of how we make things but also because we share what we make and how we made it.

The first two examples I gave are examples of people mistaking the techniques that they know for a commodity. The third is based on the specious idea that one can control everything about a brand

And I know that unique processes have a value and the inventor of those processes should benefit from that value. I believe that – that’s what our patent and copyright acts are built to address. But each of the three examples I gave are about treating something as a scarce commodity when it is not scarce at all because sharing defies the laws of physics — the more you give away the more you have.

Image: YouTube screenshot/Make

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