THE BIG STORY

The founder who swayed Silicon Valley with shoddy science

Apple and Google escalate their battle for exclusive mobile games

Both Apple and Google are aggressively pursuing game developers in hopes of locking down exclusivity on upcoming titles, according to The Wall Street Journal. As a reward for their loyalty, publishers like Electronic Arts, Gameloft, and ZeptoLabs are offered prominent placement on the App Store and Google Play for exclusive content. Neither company offers money or direct financial incentives...

Explore the bridge of 'Star Trek: Voyager' through Oculus Rift

The Oculus Rift has been used to transport people everywhere from Jerry Seinfeld's fictional apartment to another human's body, and over the weekend, one developer began taking gamers someplace even a bit further from reality: to the bridge of Star Trek: Voyager's famous ship. The new virtual reality demo lets you walk around a fairly accurate recreation of the Voyager's bridge and even allows you to stare out into space as you whiz past distant stars. You'll be exploring the ship alone, however — unfortunately, no familiar crew members will be around for you to bump into, though you may just hear their voices off-screen.

New game engine made creation easy

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Disney unveils first clip from 'Star Wars: Rebels' animated series

It's nearly time to get your animated Star Wars fix. The new original animated series Star Wars: Rebels will premiere this fall with a one-hour special on Disney XD, and now we're getting our first real look at the show. Executive producer Dave Filoni and actress Vanessa Marshall, who voices rebel leader Hera in the clip, revealed the brief scene yesterday during a panel at WonderCon in...

Series lies between episodes three and four

From The Forums

Find the most beautiful abstract art for your phone

Relying on stock artwork for your smartphone is never the right way to go. The trouble is, finding the right work of art or photography that suits you and your device isn't always the easiest task. Here's where you can start and where you can add your own. The only rules are that the art you seek should be clean and uncluttered and be sourced appropriately. Have a look.

Long Reads

The best writing of the week, April 20th

We all know the feeling. You're sleepless in the sad hours of the night or stumbling around early on a hazy weekend morning in need of something to read, and that pile of unread books just isn't cutting it. Why not take a break from the fire hose of Twitter and RSS and check out our weekly roundup of essential writing from around the web about technology, culture, media, and the future? Sure, it's one more thing you can feel guilty about sitting in your Instapaper queue, but it's better than pulling in vain on your Twitter list again.

NASA spacecraft slams into dark side of the moon as planned

At roughly 12:30AM ET early on Friday morning, a soda machine-sized NASA spacecraft slammed into the far side of the moon at 3,600 miles per hour. The impact was entirely planned by NASA engineers in order to conclude the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) program, which launched late last year. After studying the composition of the lunar atmosphere for months, the spacecraft didn't have the fuel to continue flight and engineers decided it was best to place it down on the far side of the moon, out of sight and far from previous historic landing sites.

During six months of research, the spacecraft discovered trace...

Movie Review

'Transcendence' review: welcome back to the '90s

Cinematographer Wally Pfister first teamed up with Christopher Nolan on Memento, and he’s been a vital part of the director’s team ever since. On films like The Dark Knight and Inception, Pfister’s Oscar-winning visual sensibilities allowed Nolan to crystallize his brand of thinking-person’s blockbuster. Perhaps it shouldn’t be a surprise, then, that when it came time for Pfister to step away and direct a film himself, he opted for a...

We'll wait for 'Interstellar'
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Sci-fi short film imagines a world without paper

What would our world be like without paper? According to the renegade scientist in "Scattered," a sci-fi short film adapted from a story by author Ken MacLeod, it'd be a place freed from the restrictions of human history. Without the original source documents, mankind would have a clean slate. In...

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Stem cells cloned from human adults may lead to patient-specific medical treatment

A team of scientists have used cloning methods to produce stem cells from the skin cells of adult patients. To do this, researchers extracted DNA from the cells of two adult males, aged 35 and 75. The DNA was then fused with human eggs donated by four adult women. The study, published in the scientific journal Cell, shows that it might be possible for scientists to grow patient-specific cells to treat illnesses such as heart disease or even blindness.

This marks only the second time human...




National Security

Snowden questions Putin's 'evasive' denial of mass surveillance

In a question and answer session run by Russia's state-run broadcaster earlier this week, NSA leaker Edward Snowden asked President Vladimir Putin whether his government intercepted, stored, or analyzed the communications of its citizens. Today, writing in The GuardianSnowden says he's not satisfied with Putin's "evasive" answer.

Snowden says Putin "denied the first part of the question and dodged on the latter," when he was asked if a surveillance program was morally defensible. The...


Wu-Tang Clan fans pooling $5 million to buy sole copy of the group's next album

There's truly a Kickstarter project for just about everything. Case in point: a new fundraising effort to pool together $5 million to buy the upcoming Wu-Tang Clan album, which the group is planning make available to only one lucky person. Last month, Wu-Tang Clan member Robert "RZA" Diggs described the album, called The Wu — Once Upon a Time In Shaolin, as a true collectors item, something equivalent to "having the scepter of an Egyptian king." The group's already been offered $5 million...


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