Toys Meet Data Analysis In Legonomics

It might feel as if some Lego sets are much worse value than others. But some dedicated numbercrunchers suggest the price per brick is largely stable across both sets and time. (Before the numbers, two rants as a Brit of a certain age. It’s Lego bricks, not Legos. And the only true Lego set is […]

Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s Good Omens To Get TV Adaptation

Amazon has confirmed Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s Good Omens will be adapted into a TV series to air next year. It’s appropriate timing as the 1990 novel is set in 2018. Something of a dream collaboration among sci-fi fans, it’s a comedic tale of an angel and a demon who try to stave off […]

Verizon To Have Words With Note 7 Holdouts

Galaxy Note 7 owners on Verizon are in for a surprise if they continue to use the recalled handset. Outgoing voice calls will redirect to Verizon staff who’ll demand the phone be sent back. As of last month, 93 percent of Note 7’s had been returned to Samsung following the safety recall related to fire […]

Who Dies: You Decide in Self-Driving Car Survey

MIT researchers want you to decide how self-driving cars should make moral decisions. It’s a modern – and potentially real – twist on a classic hypothetical ethics problem. The trolley problem, in its most simplest form, asks you to imagine you are driving a train and find you are about to hit five people who […]

Phone Battery Design Could Put Out Fires

Stanford researchers have developed a rechargeable battery with a built-in fire extinguisher. It’s not a new concept, but this looks to be the first time it would work without affecting battery performance. As with previous efforts, the researchers used triphenyl phosphate, a flame retardant. When exposed to heat, it forms phosphoric acid and in turn […]

Lawyers Brand iTunes App Store A Monopoly

Apple will face a court hearing over claims its tight control of iPhone apps constitutes an unfair monopoly. The plaintiff claims Apple’s 30 percent revenue cut is effectively a “surcharge” on app buyers. The people bringing the case say Apple effectively eliminates competition by making it difficult for app developers to sell directly to iPhone […]

Apple To Offer Original Shows, Netflix Style

Apple is reportedly planning to launch its own original TV content by the end of the year. It may use the material as a way to boost subscriptions to Apple Music. The Wall Street Journal reports that the content would be a big step up from the current limited video offerings on the service that […]

Uber To Share Traffic Data With City Planners

Uber is to publish trip data to help city authorities get more insight into road congestion. It’s an attempt to navigate the tricky balance between privacy and usefulness. The data will appear on a new site dubbed Movement that will initially be accessible only by city authorities and researchers but will “soon” be publicly available. […]

Mom-to-be Goes Through Labor Wearing Chewbacca Mask [Article + Video]

Going through labor is never fun, but one Star Wars fan embraced the experience by briefly wearing a Chewbacca mask. It’s attracted a very mixed response among commenters because, well, what doesn’t? A 10 second clip of Katie Stricker Curtis wearing the mask – which included a voice changing sound effect – went up on […]

Amazon Echo TV Report Triggers Amazon Echos

A TV news report about an unwanted Amazon Echo order turned into a comedy of errors when the audio triggered further Echos belonging to viewers. It’s a reminder that not everyone thinks through the user settings on devices. The CW6 station in San Diego reported on a case of a six-year-old who, not quite understanding […]

TV Screen Tech Still Popular At CES

The Consumer Electronic Show may be all about the home appliances this year, but there were still plenty of TV and other screens on displays. The basic display technology hasn’t changed much since last year’s show, with manufacturers yet to start telling us that, actually, 4K, OLED and High Dynamic Range are all unwatchable rubbish […]

Razer Making Triple-Screen Laptop

Razer has unveiled a prototype of a gaming laptop with three screens. Exactly how practical it will be remains to be seen. The device is currently codenamed Project Valerie. The three screens are each 17 inches and have a 4K resolution, though it appears likely that the processors could only cope with ordinary HD when […]