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Today's Computers Face More Attacks Than Ever

Today's Computers Face More Attacks Than Ever

CNET - Seth Rosenblatt

More malicious software has been created in the past 2 years than in the previous 10 years combined.

Nestled into a storefront at the top of San Francisco's tree-lined Valencia Street is one of the city's top defenses in the war against malicious-software infections: a computer repair shop owned by Del Jaljaa.

People bring their infected computers to Jaljaa's San Francisco Computer Repair store 5 to 10 times a day, desperate for help restoring their devices to working order. In the past few years malware has grown to be about a third of his business. "It's our bread and butter," he said.

Getting computer infections more often? You're not alone. Read More


Miiya Kids’ Wearable Wants To Encourage Safe And Active Play

TechCrunch - Natasha Lomas

Meet Miiya: a kids wearable that’s being designed to nudge kids to be more active, while also offering security features for parents to help alert them if their child has wandered too far away. It’s aimed at children aged from four- to 10-years-old, and is currently in development, as its French makers seek to raise $50,000 via the Indiegogo crowdfunding platform to get the device to market this year.

Encouraging kids to share more about what they did that day with their parents is the third gentle nudge being planned for Miiya. If it makes it to the market the wearable will include a feature where kids can choose to tag a particular location to send it to their parents — viewable via a timeline on the Miiya companion smartphone app — to help them remember to tell mum or dad about whatever cool thing they did in the park/school/their buddy’s house today. Read More


Ozobot Teaches Coding To Kids

VentureBeat - Dean Takahashi

Ozobot is a little toy robot that blends the physical and digital worlds — and teaches kids programming. The company bills the Ozobot as the world’s tiniest robot, but we figure there’s got to be something smaller than these little guys with light-emitting diodes (LEDs) for brains.

It is very basic programming, as you simply train the robots to follow patterns on the surfaces that they roll over. They look a little like Pac-Man ghosts, with domes for heads. Ozobot can identify lines, colors, and codes on both digital surfaces, such as an iPad, and physical surfaces, such as paper. Read More


Curious much? This eLearning Site May Have The Answer

Curious Much? This eLearning Site May Have The Answer

CNET - Dara Kerr

Ever wanted to learn how to cook paella, wrangle HTML code or play the ukulele? Curious.com's mission is to become the go-to site for that.

It's surprisingly easy to dislocate a man's shoulder. Using a move known in Japanese as Oogyaku, or "great reversal," you just have to get him facedown, pull his arm backward and apply pressure to his shoulder with your hand, foot or knee. A small amount of force, and -- snap -- you've popped his arm out of the shoulder joint.

I didn't learn this maneuver at a self-defense or karate class. Instead, I picked it up taking a Ninja Training 101 lesson on Curious.com. Read More


Video Game That Teaches Poetry

Video Game That Teaches Poetry

WIRED UK - Bryan Lufkin

Videogames and poetry haven't always gone hand in hand.

We're still a long way from Master Chief breaking into a Coleridge soliloquy. But game developers Ichiro Lambe and Ziba Scott have edged us a bit closer to that day with Elegy for a Dead World, a game they Kickstarted in October and released on Steam last month.

Elegy lets players write prose and poetry as they explore distant planets and dead civilisations. The player faces 27 challenges in three worlds, each riffing on a specific British Romance-era poem: "Ozymandias" by Percy Bysshe Shelley, "When I Have Fears That I May Cease to Be" by John Keats, and "Darkness" by Lord Byron. Read More


Nabi Kid-Friendly Android Tablets Are Seriously Huge

Nabi Kid-Friendly Android Tablets Are Seriously Huge

Engadget - Mariella Moon

In addition to an action cam for adventurous kids, Fuhu announced new Big Tab options at CES -- and they're so huge, they dwarf the 24-inch model launched in 2014. These latest entries to the Big Tab lineup include 42-inch, 55-inch and 65-inch models, so they're definitely not something you'd hold in your hand to watch Netflix or check your emails on.

Fuhu envisions these tablets to be used in kitchens and living rooms for interactive activities or as smart TVs, as they're touchscreen displays with access to Google Play. The 55- and 65-inch ones even have full Ultra HD resolution, WiFi, Bluetooth and NFC. According to USA Today, these huge tablets will hit the market in the second half of 2015, with the cheapest option priced at $699. The most expensive one will cost you quite a bit: $3,999 for the 65-inch 4K model. Read More


Children, Teens, Media, and Body Image

Children, Teens, Media, and Body Image

Common Sense Media

“Target Sparks Body Image Debate With Controversial Photoshop Images” reads one recent Parade headline (schmitz, 2014), while Time recently came out with a story titled “the 300 Workout: How Movies Fuel boys’ Insecurities” (Dockterman, 2014b) and a newly released Today Show/aoL poll documents how teens and young women are “obsessed” with their appearances (Dahl, 2014).

A November 2014 search for “body image” on Google News alone brings up over six million hits. There is an established field of research examining how one’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors toward one’s body — one’s body image — are linked to portrayals in mainstream media such as movies, television, magazines, advertisements, and music videos.

Less known and less researched is what role relatively newer interactive digital media play in the development of body image. there’s also been less attention paid to the role of media in body-image development among really young children. Read More


Obama's Free Community College Plan

Obama's Free Community College Plan

The Huffington Post - Shahien Nasiripour & Tyler Kingkade

Some 9 million Americans could attend community college tuition-free under a proposal President Barack Obama announced Friday.

His plan, which is subject to approval by Congress and depends on the participation of state governments, would dedicate some $60 billion over the next decade to defray tuition and fees for anyone who attends school at least half-time, maintains a roughly C+ average, and is on track to complete their program or transfer to a four-year school.

The federal government would kick in about 75 percent of the cost, while participating states would pick up the rest. For the neediest students, Pell grants would help pay for transportation, room and board, and other costs associated with attending college. Read More


What Are You Without Your iPhone? A Touch Brain-Dead.

What Are You Without Your iPhone? A Touch Brain-Dead.

CNET - Chris Matyszczyk

It didn't come with an umbilical cord. It just came with a charger.

But your smartphone is now more than just your baby. It's your lifeline to your very self.

How bad is it, though, when you are parted from your phone? Do you pine? Do you whine? Does your mind shut down in plaintive grief?

Researchers at the University of Missouri thought they'd test this out. Their conclusions might, to some, seem positively mind-numbing.

Just the headline from the university's own newsroom makes my timbers shiver: "iPhone Separation Linked to Physiological Anxiety, Poor Cognitive Performance, MU Study Finds." Read More


Instagram Is the Fastest Growing Major Social Network

Instagram Is the Fastest Growing Major Social Network

Re/code - Kurt Wagner

Instagram is growing quickly — faster than the competition, it turns out.

New data from the Pew Research Internet Project released Friday found that Instagram was the fastest growing major social network among U.S. adults last year. The segment of U.S. adults using the photo-sharing app grew nine percent over 2013, meaning 26 percent of the U.S. adult population is now on Instagram.

That marks the biggest jump of any major social network studied, surpassing growth by Pinterest (seven percent), LinkedIn (six percent) and Twitter (five percent). Facebook, on the other hand, didn’t expand its user base among U.S. adults at all last year, staying steady at 71 percent, according to the study. Read More


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