The Game of Game of Thrones: Season 5, Episode 3, The High Sparrow

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As each week passes here in the Game of Game of Thrones, the number of total points scored continues to dwindle, and we here running the numbers are beginning to wonder how this season will rank in the overall legacy of the most entertaining show on television. Perhaps all those disparaging things I said last week about Daenerys’ garbage season really just apply to the show as a whole this year, but I’m not ready to throw such strong words around quite yet. It’s possible Season Four spoiled us last year, when the top-10 insanity of The Purple Wedding left us gagging all of two episodes in. (It also might be the case that watching this show while numerically quantifying its entertainment value can skew one’s perspective — possibly!) But…

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Tesla’s home batteries could be leased similar to SolarCity scheme

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Tesla is widely expected to introduce a pair of new battery technologies later this week: a battery for the home and a “very large scale utility battery.” A new report from The Guardian suggests that the home battery could be leased to customers on similar terms to an existing, experimental scheme from solar panel provider SolarCity — a company with extremely close ties to Tesla.

Tesla’s batteries can power a house during an outage

Customers pay SolarCity an initial fee of $1,500 for a Tesla battery, followed by monthly payments of $15 for the next 10 years. This makes for a cost of $3,300 to the customers — which compares favorably to the battery’s $13,000 price reported by The Guardian. Tesla monitors data from the systems with the…

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Twitter’s revamped trends feature insults ‘ugly’ feminists

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Earlier this month, Twitter launched a new homepage designed to pull images, headlines, and hashtags from the social network’s users to show its worth as a news service. It wasn’t long though, until the new page made several missteps, illustrating categories like “world news” with questionable pictures including spandex-clad butts and creepy horse squirrels. Now Twitter’s attempts to encompass the opinions of its millions of users have backfired again. The network’s new trends feature today annotated the trending #FeministsAreUgly hashtag — a movement with a positive intention started last August by two feminists — with the headline “Ugly Feminists Freak Out Over #FeministsAreUgly Hashtag.”

The headline appears to have been taken from…

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Teenager cuts nearly a third of a second off Rubik’s Cube world record

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A teenager has just lopped an impressive 0.3 seconds off the world record for solving a Rubik’s Cube. Collin Burns solved a traditional (3×3) Rubik’s Cube in just 5.25 seconds this weekend in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. That time beat the previous record, 5.55 seconds, which was set in the Netherlands by Mats Valk in 2013.

Speed demon

The record-setting attempt was held at an official World Cube Association competition, with a regulation, pre-scrambled cube. A representative from the association tells Mashable that “we can confirm that this is … the new official WCA world record for the 3x3x3 single solve category.” The spokesperson added, “To our best knowledge, it has been performed in an official competition, with all the rules…

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Stephen Hawking imagines a parallel universe where Zayn Malik is still in One Direction

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Hearts around the world were smashed to bits last month when Zayn Malik, the most mysterious One Direction member, announced he was leaving the band. The resulting emotional fallout has subsided in the following weeks, but last night, Stephen Hawking finally weighed in on the situation, according to a report from BuzzFeed.

Last night, during an event at the Sydney Opera House (where Hawking appeared as a hologram) an interviewer asked Hawking, “What do you think is the cosmological effect of Zayn leaving One Direction and consequently breaking the hearts of millions of teenage girls across the world?”

Does this mean there are parallel Zayns?

Hawking’s response was optimistic, largely because it drew from the multiverse theory, or the…

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Jay Z defends Tidal in a Sunday afternoon tweetstorm

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Jay Z officially relaunched his streaming service Tidal last month with a bunch of other famous musicians, making it an instant target for both praise and criticism. At first, it seemed capable of giving independent artists more control over their music, while luring in listeners with big-name exclusives from its owners. But as time went on, it seemed like no one was actually using Tidal. Now, Jay Z has taken to Twitter to defend the service, reiterating what separates Tidal from its competitors.

Jay bucks against the idea that Tidal is just a “for rich people, by rich people” service, reminding his followers that Tidal has no where near the amount of money as companies like Spotify, and that Tidal has a 75 percent royalty rate for…

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Konami removing P.T. from PlayStation Store, future of Silent Hill in question

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P.T., the truly terrifying “playable teaser” for a new Silent Hill game, is being pulled from the PlayStation Store this Wednesday, April 29th, according to a notice posted on Konami’s official site for the game. The title was first released last year at Gamescon, and players quickly solved the mystery to reveal that it was a teaser for a new Silent Hill from Hideo Kojima’s studio, Kojima Productions, and Guillermo del Toro.

But over the past month, rumors have suggested that publisher Konami was splitting with Kojima Productions. The pair has worked on the critically-acclaimed Metal Gear Solid series for years, but Kojima’s logo was recently removed from the sites for both Metal Gear Solid 5 and P.T. Hideo Kojima has since confirmed…

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The NSA made a coloring book for kids

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Last week we met Dunk, the NSA’s captivatingly weird Earth Day mascot, and now it looks like he’s not the only anthropomorphic creature in the NSA family. Dan Raile at Pando Daily went to the RSA security conference last week, and returned with a prize: an NSA-themed coloring book.

The book, America’s CryptoKids: Future Codemakers and Cokebreakers, tells the story of a team of talking animals, who, when they’re not spying on you, spend their time shredding on the guitar and playing friendly games of lacrosse. While also spying on you, of course.

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Nokia denies reports that it’s reentering the phone business

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After rumors sparked up last week that Nokia has plans to get back into the phone business, the Finnish company today made the unusual move of publicly discrediting those claims. In a brief message posted to its website, Nokia says that it “reiterates it currently has no plans to manufacture or sell consumer handsets.” It adds, “These reports are false, and include comments incorrectly attributed to a Nokia Networks executive.”

It’s been a year since Microsoft closed the deal to purchase Nokia’s phone business, but that hasn’t stopped murmurs that Nokia would some day throw its hat back into the ring. Recode stoked the fire last week with a report that Nokia has plans to reenter the consumer handset market as soon as next year. The…

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These old school electric bicycles look like a 1950s dream

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For cycling enthusiasts whose interests fall somewhere between a 10-speed and a motorcycle, electric bicycles are a pretty solid alternative. Unfortunately, sometimes e-bikes look like this. But these new retro-styled ones from Vintage Electric look like something an extra in Jaws would ride around before all the bad stuff stars happening.

The bikes are from the Cruz line: they’re kind of campy, kind of beachy, and vintage in style only. Vintage Electric claims the bikes can reach a speed of 36 MPH in “Race Mode” with a range of 30 miles and a recharge time of just two hours. The company says the 3,000 watt, 3-phase brushless motor and 52 volt battery should last around 30,000 miles.

The bicycles are available now for…

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Quiksilver designed a wetsuit that looks like an actual suit

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If you’re a surfer, and you love the feel of salty sea mist on your skin, and the threatening billow of a forming wave, and the rush of gliding on water, but your preferred look is business formal, I’ve got good news for you. Quiksilver in Japan and the ad agency TBWA\HAKUHODO have designed the True Wetsuit, a wetsuit that looks like an actual suit.

The True Wetsuit is made from jersey neoprene and a stretchy “dryflight” fabric. It looks very much like a too-tight suit made of strange material. There’s even a tie. And this isn’t like one of those joke t-shirts with a tuxedo painted on — each wetsuit costs a cool $2,500.

The only problem is, if anyone sees you in the water, they might think you fell in.

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Google opens its Person Finder tool to aid earthquake relief efforts in Nepal

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A magnitude 7.8 earthquake hit Nepal early this morning, striking an area between Kathmandu and the city of Pokhara, with damage extending to India, Bangladesh, and Tibet. At the time of publication, nearly 1,000 people have died and more than 1,700 have been injured as a result of the earthquake, the BBC reports. In an attempt to aid rescue efforts, Google has once again opened up its Person Finder tool — a simple crowd-sourced missing persons database.

Google first launched the application in 2010, following the devastating earthquake in Haiti, and has since deployed the tool several times after natural disasters. Person Finder gathers information from emergency responders and individual users who can enter information for a missing…

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You can now send directions and notes to your phone via Google search

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Google’s taking small steps to more intimately connect your Android phone and desktop computer. The search company has rolled out a new feature that lets you send directions, notes, reminders, and more directly from your browser to your phone.

If your Android device is updated and has the right settings enabled (see this help article for details), you can simply type “send a note to my phone” or “send directions to my phone” directly into the search bar. Doing so will open up a little Google Now-style card that will let you type in your note or specify the directions that you’re looking for. Google will then send the data to your phone as a notification. Other than directions or notes, you can also send reminders, set an alarm, or…

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The Weekender: Rube Goldberg, Age of Ultron, and MDMA

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Hello fellow weekend-goers, and welcome back to The Weekender. This week, we met college kids channeling wacky inventor Rube Goldberg, we finally saw Age of Ultron, and we learned it’s harder than we thought to set up a weed dispensary in Vegas. We’ll also be setting you up for a stellar weekend back on this terrestrial plane. So sit back and take a journey with us.

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Google’s Nexus 7 tablet has been discontinued

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It was only a matter of time, but now it’s official: the Nexus 7 has left us for greener pastures. Google’s affordable and functional 7-inch tablet has disappeared from the Google Store, where a note in red type simply states that the device is “no longer available for purchase.”

The Asus-made tablet was certainly long in the tooth — it first launched in July 2013 — but it remained attractive because Google has consistently kept it up-to-date with the latest versions of Android. Nevertheless, its time has come and gone, and the tablet has been officially replaced by the newer Nexus 9. If you’re still looking for a Nexus 7, though, you should be able to grab one from third-parties like Amazon until supplies dry up.

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An all-female Transformers team will join Hasbro’s comic series

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Even though a new Transformers film universe may be the last thing anyone wants, females fans of the series have reason to rejoice. USA Today reports that Hasbro will unveil a team of six new female Transformers in the IDW comic series Transformers: Combiner Hunters this July, before releasing toy versions of the group in the future.

The new group, which fuse to form the “Combiner” Transformer Victorion, is the result of a recent poll, and reflects the series diverse fanbase. “Our female fans have demanded to be part of the story,” Sarah Carroll, senior brand manager for Transformers at Hasbro, told USA Today. “To have them be represented as well is something that’s only natural.” Female Transformers have existed since the series…

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Eyewear maker Luxottica says the next Google Glass is coming soon

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Google may have pulled the plug on the Explorer edition of its Google Glass, but the company has been steadfast in insisting a new version of the controversial wearable computer will be coming out under the direction of Nest boss Tony Fadell. No one knows when exactly that will be, but one of Google’s partners has indicated it might not be too far away. According to The Wall Street Journal, the CEO of Italian eyewear maker Luxottica said that the next generation of Glass would be out soon, and that the company was continuing the partnership announced last year to make Glass a bit more stylish than its first implementation was.

“In Google, there are some second thoughts on how to interpret version three [of Glass],” CEO Massimo Vian said…

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Apple may have rejected an app update because the description mentioned Pebble

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The Apple Watch is just now reaching the hands of customers, and already raising questions about how Apple will compete against its new rivals. At least a couple developers are reporting in the Pebble forums that Apple is rejecting app updates for mentioning a competing platform — Pebble. A developer for the SeaNav US iOS app says Apple rejected an update for the app, which supported Pebble for two years, and said so in the app description and metadata. Apple cited this reason:

3.1 – Apps or metadata that mentions the name of any other mobile platform will be rejected

3.1 Details

We noticed that your app or its metadata contains irrelevant platform information in the app. Providing future platform compatibility plans, or other…

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It is a beautiful day. You are wearing an Apple Watch.

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It’s a beautiful day. You just got your Apple Watch™ in the mail! You take it to your living room and unbox it. Wow. It’s incredible.

You go through the setup process, and link it to your iPhone. You set the charging dock on your nightstand, and set an alarm. You go to sleep, and dream of floating through white clouds in a blue sky as Jony Ive narrates. Your alarm wakes you at 9:30 on Saturday — the alarm on your Apple Watch. You pick the Apple Watch up from its charging dock, and put it on your wrist. Gee, that looks fancy.

You stretch and yawn. You take a shower, wearing your Apple Watch — water drops splash against its scratch-resistant sapphire display. You think about visiting the pool later. But first, you want to buy some…

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