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'Watch Dogs' adds real guilt to fake killing

The defining experience of every Grand Theft Auto-style game is running over pedestrians with cars. Typically, I think nothing of it — they’re not really people, after all. They might look a little bit like you and me, but they are devoid of personality, of consciousness, of soul. So when I’m fleeing five cop cars and a pedestrian-filled getaway route presents itself, I don’t hesitate to mow...

A lamp is spying on New Yorkers and tweeting their conversations

Wired tells the story of two artists, Kyle McDonald and Brian House, who wanted to experiment with surveillance. The pair installed simple Wi-Fi-enabled recording devices in lamps at McDonalds, a library, a bedroom, a bank, and in New York's Washington Square Park. The recordings are sent to Mechanical Turk workers, who have been transcribing and posting them to Twitter for almost seven months.

Most of the captured conversations are mundane: thoughts like "Socks, I need socks," and "How's the weather looking for today? Hopefully good after the last week of this." But occasionally the conversations sound like something you might be sensitive about if it were you. "I'm going insane being so cautious with money." "She sounds like a keeper, honestly. You just have to let her know you want it to be serious." "For the tenth time, it's because my boss doesn't like me, I've told you this already!"

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You might also like this story about weaponized clickbait

Reading news online over the past year, I came to realize that more or less every story now includes a beautiful woman. Tucked into modules with names like "around the web" or "you might like," there she is, demonstrating her bosom or backside or pearly-white smile. Often she is a celebrity, talking about weight loss, filing a lawsuit, or collapsing onstage. Other times she is a fitness guru, or a fashion expert, or (in at least one case) a "former pole vaulter" who is "still smoking HOT."...


Mad Men in space: the ads that sold NASA's golden age

Of all the alternative and privately funded spaceflight experiments to crop up in recent years, Mars One has arguably been among the most visible. Which is, of course, exactly what Bas Lansdorp wanted. After all, the Dutch entrepreneur modeled his endeavor, a mission to send regular folks to Mars, after the reality TV show Big Brother, going so far as to meet with the series' producer for guidance. “We’re talking about creating a major media...

Listen to 'Space Project' make music from Voyager spacecraft recordings

Portland-based Lefse Records has released Space Project, a compilation of songs that use recordings from the Voyager 1 and 2 space probes. The album, which entered stores on April 19th, features tracks from 14 different artists including Porcelain Raft, The Antlers, Youth Lagoon, Blues Control and British space rock band Spiritualized.

The recordings from the space probes are actually of electromagnetic radiation fluctuations in the...

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