The days of Running Man spinning joyfully across your desktop have officially come to an end.AOL Instant Messenger (AIM), the last remnant of the original AOL’s walled garden, has officially signed off after 20 years.Launched way back in 1997, when you still needed to get an install CD from the grocery store, AOL Instant Messenger was the first mainstream chat service in the early days of the internet.For just $19.95 a month, you could create an embarrassing user name that would continue to haunt you for most of your adult life, and chat instantly with other people around the world.After its boom years in the early 2000s, AIM took a nosedive.With competing instant messaging apps and the rise in texting, convincing users to pay for instant messaging became a hard sell.
While human-made devices inspired by gecko feet have emerged in recent years, enabling their wearers to slowly scale a glass wall, the possible applications of gecko-adhesion technology go far beyond Spiderman-esque antics.A Georgia Institute of Technology researcher is looking into how the technology could be applied in a high-precision industrial setting, such as in robot arms used in manufacturing computer chips."There are numerous ways that gecko adhesion could be used in an industrial setting, especially in handling delicate materials like the silicon wafers used in manufacturing computer processors," said Michael Varenberg, an assistant professor in Georgia Tech's George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering.But before robot arms and other devices can implement gecko adhesion technology, researchers need more information about the mechanical and physical characteristics of the human-made adhesive surfaces.In a study published Dec. 13 in Journal of the Royal Society Interface, Varenberg looked at a particular type of gecko-inspired adhesive surface and narrowed down a range of angles at which the material will attach stronger and release its grip easier.For that process to be replicated in a factory using man-made adhesive technology, researchers must determine the precise angles at which to apply a load to get or release the grip between the robotic arm and the silicon wafer.
Egyptian archaeologists working in Luxor have explored two tombs dating back to the 18th Dynasty, uncovering colourful figurines, funeral masks, a stunning mural—and a linen-wrapped mummy.As National Geographic reports, these two tombs, found in the necropolis of Dra’ Abu el-Naga in Luxor, Egypt, were originally discovered in the 1990s by the German archaeologist Friederike Kampp-Seyfried.On Saturday, the Egyptian ministry of antiquities announced the re-discovery and excavation of these two tombs, designated Kampp 150 and Kampp 161, after languishing for nearly three decades.Kampp-Seyfried managed to excavate the entranceway to Kampp 150, but that’s as far as she got, and the tombs were quickly forgotten.What is clear, however, is that they date back to the 18th Dynasty (1550-1292 BC), and they were likely made for government officials who served at the ancient capital of Thebes.Kampp 150 is a mud-brick and masonry structure that’s larger than the other tomb.
After months of teasing, Google’s finally brought its AR stickers to the Pixel 2.For most users with the company’s latest flagship handset, the feature will be available today as part of the an Android 2.1 update.The feature was announced on-stage at the Pixel event back in January, offering a sneak peak of a fun little addition made possible through its ARCore technology, letting users drop augmented reality characters onto their own pictures and video.It was a pretty compelling demonstration of Google’s ARKit competitor, and now its live for everyone to check out, including a couple of key product licenses.Those Stranger Things stickers that we got to play with a few months back in here, bringing creatures from Netflix’s popular series with them.And, a mere few days ahead of the much anticipated release of The Last Jedi, the feature brings a bunch of new content from the Star Wars universe.
BJL, the independent integrated agency, is celebrating after winning a competitive pitch to oversee communications across Europe, the Middle East and Africa for fire safety and explosion protection firm Fike.Adopting marketing and PR duties, BJL will liaise with Fike’s European and US headquarters to devise international campaigns in support of new product launches and the wider brand.BJL’s Nicky Unsworth commented: “We are really excited about being given the opportunity to work with Fike and to help them find new ways to reach their worldwide customer base via digital display, print and trade advertising.“The work they do is highly specialised and we’re looking forward to delivering a clear, effective communications strategy that will match their ambition and support them as they grow.”BJL will provide strategic planning duties in addition to the creation of press, digital and social content together with sharing their PR, marketing and sales expertise.Unsworth sat down with The Drum today to talk about media, marketing and people.
Earlier this week, we got the ridiculous report that Quentin Tarantino not only pitched a Star Trek movie, but that J.J. Abrams was allegedly drafting up a writers room alongside Tarantino to help bring it to life.A new report today claims that Tarantino’s Trek would boldly go where Star Trek movies have never gone before.Deadline, who broke the initial news about the Tarantino Trek project, is now reporting that the project—if it actually makes it to the big screen, which is still a big hypothetical at this point—would be the first R-rated Star Trekmovie, and that The Revenant screenwriter Mark L. Smith is the frontrunner to tackle the script for a project Tarantino is expected to potentially direct.This is a relatively wild path for the Star Trek movie franchise to go down in a post-Beyond world, but it’s not like there isn’t precedent for it—this year’s Star Trek: Discovery, which drew controversy from fans for some scenes of violence and two characters using “fuck” as an expletive, was rated TV-MA, the equivalent of an R-rating for movies.Deadline’s report doesn’t indicate whether or not Tarantino’s idea leaned more toward a soft or hard R-rating, but it could just mean something similar in tone and mood to what Star Trek: Discovery did, rather than something involving blood-caked Starfleet Officers flinging salty language like photon torpedoes off the port bow.But the fact that we can even get reports about an R-rated Quentin Tarantino Star Trek project goes to show just what a weird place the Star Trek brand is on the big screen after Beyond, which didn’t quite set the world on fire at the box office.
Microsoft is bringing its Whiteboard ‘digital canvas’ app to Windows 10 users, providing a new way for employees to collaborate on creative work and share ideas.Whiteboard, aimed at Surface owners, makes use of the device’s stylus and touch inputs to share drawings.Users can jot down notes, make precise illustrations or search for images on the web from the app.It can also create tables, diagrams and flowcharts, which are updated in real time and automatically saved to the cloud.“It’s designed for teams that need to ideate, iterate, and work together both in person and remotely, and across multiple devices,” the Microsoft Whiteboard team wrote in a blog post.“This is certainly a step in the right direction for a more modern and natural style of collaboration,” said Alan Lepofsky, vice president and principal analyst at Constellation Research.
For the love of cloud, don't click on anythingGoogle seems powerless to stop its Google Drive file sharing service being exploited by a spammer who has linked other users to their stash of pirated movies, among other dubious files, users have complained.Team Drives is part of Google’s G Suite offering, aimed at businesses, education and other professional organisations.But for weeks, Team Drive users have found themselves joined to a public huyannet Team Drive.Google was alerted six weeks ago but has been unable to come up with a fix and extract huyannet and its files from legitimate paying users’ workspaces.The public huyannet space contains terabytes of copyright infringing material.
Who knew that there was money in stolen circuit breakers?Late last month, Riverside County prosecutors, east of Los Angeles, indicted two men on charges of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars of circuit breakers from businesses and movie theaters in southeastern California in recent years.According to The Desert Sun and court filings that were provided to Ars by that newspaper, the two suspects were identified by a combination of "security footage, facial recognition software, and a license plate scanner."Mention of such technology pops up occasionally.On Tuesday, when Ars contacted the Riverside County Sheriff's Department to ask basic questions of the agency—How often are such facial recognition searches run?This week, Ars contacted all five members of the Riverside County Board of Supervisors and the relevant state legislators: State Senator Richard Roth, and Assemblyman Jose Medina.
Facebook closed its Oculus Story Studio in May, and that seemed like the end for its effort to create virtual reality story experiences such as its award-winning Henry short film.It’s an adaptation of a story from Neil Gaiman, creator of comics and books such as The Sandman, Coraline, and American Gods.Edward Saatchi, executive producer of the VR project, said in an interview with GamesBeat that the story will be told in three chapters, with the first one debuting at the Sundance Film Festival in January.Wolves in the Walls was about 60 percent done when the Oculus Story Studio folded, but Facebook said it would continue to fund VR storytelling projects through third-party relationships, and in this case, Oculus provided the funding to complete Wolves in the Walls.When you looked in the direction of the sound, a new part of the story would unfold before your eyes.She believes there are wolves in the walls of the house, trying to break into it, but her family doesn’t believe her.
is a storytelling video series dedicated to learning what truly makes a great story, told through the lens of the world’s talent and practitioners of the craft in entertainment, marketing and beyond.For a good portion of any industry, the word “authentic” can tend to be bandied about fairly indiscriminately.However, when learning more about Scout Productions, it isn’t simply a word, it’s a way of doing the work that breaks through.One of Scout Productions’ most well-known projects, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, is wrapped in a most interesting brand integration story — and the company is one of the innovators in the space.Created 15 years ago by co-founder David Collins — and heading to Netflix in its latest form, shifting from New York City to more conservative locations in the US — the show was in the “wild west” of brand integration early on but strong partnerships and talent, including hiring Tina Elmo, who was the brand integration maven on HBO's Sex and the City, as partnership director in 2005, made a difference.As time, and audience sophistication progressed, Rob Eric, chief creative officer at Scout Productions points out the importance of their own evolution and that true authenticity.
I imagine them floating away like clouds in the sky.Somedays I do not know how I manage to sit with the memories, the anxiety, the fear, without my world falling apart.It felt an internal battle that I would never win.In particular, one memory about a young man who had tried to end his life.If a person’s eyes could speak, they were saying, ‘I am ready to go’.As I left to go bed, walking down the soulless corridors to my room.
You’ve got a huge range of options, from splashing out on a fancy piece of tech if you’ve got an eye-wateringly big budget or checking out which of their favourite films have just made it to Blu-ray if you’re counting your pennies.So whether your loved ones are likely to be streaming a movie, watching a newly unwrapped DVD boxset or catching up on the cosy classics that are scheduled over the Christmas period, we’ve collected together the best TVs, projectors, universal remotes, DVDs, Blu-rays and even some must-have merchandise to cuddle up with during a festive film fest.Resolution: 1080p (1920 x 1080) | Brightness: 3,000 ANSI lumens | Contrast ratio: 23,000:1 | Speaker: 10WIf you’re getting a gift for someone who takes their movie nights very seriously it might be worth tempting them to ditch their usual TV set-up and opt for the next best thing to an actual cinema - a damn good projector.Re-cap(tain America) before Infinity War kicks inResolution: 1080p (1920 x 1080) | Discs: 7 | Age rating: 12 | Total runtime: 713 minutes
Microsoft will soon be offering virtual machines in its Azure cloud service based on AMD's Epyc processors.The growth of the cloud computing market has, until now, been a success story for Intel's Xeon server processors, as the rise of cloud computing came at the same time as Intel was particularly dominant in the x86 processor market.But 2017 has been a turning point for AMD.A new family of chips built around its Zen architecture has offered Intel a level of competition it hasn't experienced since the early 2000s.In the desktop space, AMD's Ryzen processors offered a viable alternative to Intel's chips.Epyc, aimed at one- and two-socket systems, isn't necessarily faster than comparable Intel Xeons, but its mix of features—lots of threads and cores, and more memory and I/O bandwidth than Intel's latest Xeon offer—along with Intel-level performance make it a serious competitor in the server space.
The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is one of the most popular vans in the world, so any changes must ensure it still meets the needs of workers across the globe.Thankfully, it appears Mercedes-Benz Vans has that in mind.Mercedes-Benz Vans will soon introduce a new generation of Sprinter, but before it does, it's put out a teaser of the van's interior.The most important updates appear to be tech-related, with a new infotainment screen setup atop the dashboard, while a new steering wheel puts just about every control conceivable at the driver's fingertips (literally).A previous teaser gave us a good look at the new Sprinter's design, albeit in sketch form.The front end takes on some of the aesthetics seen in other recent Mercedes-Benz vehicles, specifically around the headlights and lower grille opening.
The game is "Battle Chef Brigade," and it's a true delight — charming, beautiful, and smart.That's great news if you're playing "Battle Chef Brigade," but it's unfortunate if you're in the position of convincing people to check it out (hi!).You play as Mina, a fledgling cook from a small village who wants to join the ranks of the world's most serious chefs: the "Battle Chef Brigade"!First, you must hunt for ingredients:Just outside of Mina's kitchen is a backyard rife with creatures and plants waiting to be harvested and cooked.From the caranha you see above (a plant that wants to bite you) to straight up dragons, you're never hunting for animals in "Battle Chef Brigade."
In the last week of the month alone, the Senate marched toward advancing the GOP's tax bill, the Dow topped 24,000, Bitcoin leaped above $11,000, President Trump retweeted anti-Muslim videos and invoked a rebuke from British Prime Minister Theresa May, Matt Lauer was fired after allegations of sexual misconduct, and North Korea tested another ICBM (a fact that is, as WIRED's own Lily Hay Newman puts it, even scarier than that sounds on its own).Oh, and the public continued to sound alarms about the impending end of net neutrality.But, in the WIRED realm, a small bit of wonderment prevailed.As our own transportation team put it, the semitruck—powered by an enormous battery that runs up to 500 miles on a single charge—marks one more mile traveled on Musk's quest to unshackle humanity from its reliance on oil and gas, and drive us—autonomously, of course—into a cleaner future.Below, a selection of the most-read stories on WIRED.com over the past 30 days.That kind of depends on how you define trucking.—Aarian Marshall
After its success last year, Ferrero Rocher has reopened its pop up store where shoppers can enjoy a multi-sensory experience while getting "behind the layers" of the sweet treat.The event is taking place at Westfield in London's Shepherd Bush with a two story store posing dark and mysteriously until December 17.Created by TracyLocke, the experience includes a golden bar and lounge where the drinks are created by Liquid Chefs, the mixology specialists, before guests can enjoy a 45 minute experience in a "pod".In the video above, regional category director at Rocher, Ian Tweedale, explains that there is still a place for advertising.However with this event, he really want the customer to enjoy the brand.He said: "This is the second year, we are doing it again after the success of last year.
For the last four years, vegan food startup Hampton Creek had yet to crack the eggless egg.But on Thursday, the company announced it was rolling out its first scrambled "egg" product, "Just Scramble," in several restaurants in San Francisco — starting with Flore, a cafe in the city’s Castro district.The company’s mission is to transform the way we eat by swapping the animal products in food for vegetable-based alternatives.Four years later, the company still wasn't selling a vegan alternative to eggs.In June, the company announced that it was going to work on lab-grown meat.Since starting six years ago, Hampton Creek has raised more than $220 million and is currently valued at $1.1 billion.
Back in 2015, then-Commissioner of the FCC Ajit Pai submitted a lengthy paper detailing his reasons for voting against the incoming net neutrality rules.He made a lot of predictions about harm those rules would cause — predictions that, as fellow Commissioner Clyburn points out today, pretty much all failed to come true.In a brief but to-the-point document posted to the FCC website, she lists a number of the Chairman’s apocalyptic predictions for how the new rules would allow price regulation, let the FCC tell ISPs what their service offerings should be, and of course eventually be struck down by the courts.Needless to say, none of that happened.Here are a few examples:Chairman Pai: Courts will not countenance this unlawful power grab.