To Create A Habit, Focus On The Reward

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shutterstock_178752773 On May 1, 1981, American Airlines launched its frequent flyer program AAdvantage. Since then, a flood of loyalty programs have attempted to bring customers back through rewards. Today, you can become a card-carrying member of just about anything: hotels, supermarkets, drugstores and pizza chains. If you’re in a store, chances are someone will ask, “Would you like to join our… Read More

Orbital says its Soviet engine probably made its rocket explode

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A decades-old Soviet engine is probably to blame for last week’s rocket explosion. Last Tuesday, Orbital Science’s unmanned Antares rocket detonated 15 seconds into launch, injuring no one but destroying thousands of pounds of supplies meant for the International Space Station. Speculation focused on to the refurbished Soviet rocket engines Orbital was using, and in a conference call today, Orbital CEO David Thompson confirmed that the speculation was probably right.

“While still preliminary and subject to change, the current evidence strongly suggests that one of the two AJ26 main engines that powered Antares’ first stage failed about 15 seconds after ignition,” Thompson said, stressing that more analysis needs to be done. “At this…

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The Department Of Energy Needs Your Help To Cut The Soft Costs Of Solar

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Department of Energy SunShot Catalyst This year, SunShot’s Catalyst incubator crowdsourced 130 problem statements involving these soft costs in solar energy by letting the public vote for the issues they deem most important, which drew attention to issues like the difficulty consumers have finding information about buying into solar or the price of inspecting large commercial installations. Read More

This is how much better ‘Grand Theft Auto V’ looks on PS4

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Los Santos is about to get a whole lot prettier. Developer Rockstar Games has just released a new video that details how much better the upcoming remastered version of Grand Theft Auto V looks by comparing the PS3 and PS4 versions of the game. While the original, last-gen version of GTA V looked fantastic, the new edition adds a surprisingly noticeable amount of detail to the experience. If you haven’t played the game before, this looks like the best way to jump in — it will even have a first person mode. The game is coming to the PS4 and Xbox One on on November 18th, with a PC version slated to hit on January 27th.

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Will.i.am’s Puls smartwatch is the worst product I’ve touched all year

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Musician, producer, and just generally positive dude will.i.am has dipped his toes more than once into the personal technology world. His latest venture is a wearable smartphone called the Puls, sold under his i.am+ company. The Puls is a fully independent smartwatch — it has its own SIM card and doesn’t rely on being connected to a smartphone to work. Will.i.am introduced it to the world on a stage at Salesforce’s Dreamforce conference last month in front a bunch of devotees to CRM.

I got a chance to use an early production model earlier today. It’s objectively the worst product I’ve touched all year.

The Puls is a stiff cuff that you wear around your wrist. It has a curved touchscreen on its surface and sensors to measure your…

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VCs Look To The Future As IoT Investments Soar

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robotman Internet of Things startups are amassing millions in venture dollars to make their way out of the conceptual future and into our homes, cars and offices. Crowdfunding platforms have made hits out of intelligent coolers and customizable smart watches, but the top venture-backed companies have been centered around the home automation and security space. Read More

Google Maps is getting a colorful redesign for iOS and Android

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Google’s colorful new design style is making its way to Maps this week. With an update rolling out over the next few days, the look of Google Maps on both iOS and Android will be overhauled to fit in line with Material Design, a style that’s been quickly making its way across Google’s biggest apps. The changes here aren’t dramatic — it appears that Maps still functions and is laid out largely the same way — but it certainly does appear to be a more stylish layout, and perhaps one that’s easier to intuit as well. Though Google demonstrates the updated design on the iPhone and both Android phones and tablets, it doesn’t specifically mention whether the iPad will be getting this design update just yet.

There are also some feature additions…

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‘Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare’ review: let’s talk about shooting people

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An unexpected thing happens early in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, the latest in the military shooter franchise in which the player kills hundreds of human goons to the rhythm of Bruckheimer-style story beats. The action slows for a breath. You take cover on one side of a busy highway, reload, then fire heavy weapons at enemies stationed on the median. It’s hard to line their heads in your scope, because the traffic dirties the frame, absorbing the brunt of your payload. But after a while,…

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Facebook Open Sources Its Proxygen HTTP Framework And Server

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Facebook Facebook today announced that it is open sourcing Proxygen, the C++ HTTP libraries — including an HTTP server — that it uses internally. The company has open sourced quite a bit of its code in recent months, much of it focused on mobile developers. In many ways, today’s launch is more interesting, though, as it’s likely to reach a far wider number of developers. Read More

Google Drive Now Works Better With Desktop Applications

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Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 12.53.36 PM Google today announced a new feature for its online storage service Google Drive that will allow users to more easily launch the files they have saved in the cloud using their preferred desktop applications. The feature is not rolling out to the core product, however, but is instead available as an optional Chrome extension. Once installed, users will be able to right-click on applications… Read More

Google Guarantees Inbox Invite By 5 PM PT If You Ask During Today’s ‘Happy Hour’

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inbox-feature Google is expanding its Inbox invite program, having issued another collection of invites to existing members already today, with a new ‘Happy Hour’ taking place between 3 p.m. PT and 4 p.m. PT today. If users email them at inbox@google.com asking for an invite during that window, they’ll get access guaranteed by 5 p.m. PT today.

Want an invite TODAY? #InboxHappyHour 3-4pm PT. Read More

Welcome to CNN correspondent ‘Mortal Kombat’

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There were no special holograms for this year’s CNN midterm election coverage — iPads and Surfaces, yes, but nothing too crazy. Except, of course, for the wall of correspondents reporting from various campaign headquarters and key cities:

If you grew up in the 90s, this should look familiar. Here, let’s help you out:

We know what you’re thinking: CNN would never unlock all those correspondents out of the box! So let us help you with this handy guide.

First, your starting…

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Mozilla’s chairwoman says writing about Gamergate was ‘a mistake’

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Mozilla is the latest major group to stumble into Gamergate, and it’s just realized that this was a terrible idea. As The Daily Dot reported earlier today, The Open Standard — the foundation’s recently launched online magazine — has spent the past few days inexplicably mediating the “consumer revolt” against social progressivism and alleged ethics breaches in video games. After publishing a critical article by education writer Audrey Watters, Open Standard found itself in the crosshairs of Gamergate supporters who believed they had been unfairly profiled, including Eron Gjoni, who instigated the movement with an angry essay about game developer Zoe Quinn. As a followup, it posted a rebuttal by a Gamergate supporter and published a series…

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