A Big Milestone + Geekly Update
Today I'm celebrating an anniversary -- 20 years of online publishing! The Internet Tourbus first rolled out into cyberspace in July 1995, and ten years later, AskBobRankin.com was born. With thanks to awesome readers like you, I'll keep on keeping on. Today's Geekly Update is an expanded version, with twenty items that are guaranteed to make you 146% smarter. Read, think and comment!
The AskBobRankin Geekly Update
Coincidentally, today (July 15th) is also Amazon’s 20th birthday. The e-commerce giant will celebrate with Prime Day, offering Prime members “more deals than Black Friday.”
The English version of Wikipedia is being turned into a 7,600-volume print edition (that's volumes, not pages) that will cost $500,000. Place your pre-order today and start start shopping for a bigger house to hold it.
Heaven help the homing pigeons! Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that lasers in space and aboard drones will beam data to mobile users in developing nations. It’s part of his Internet.org effort to add the next 5 billion users to Facebook (and the Internet).
As if an arm and a leg aren’t enough, Mastercard is testing a new way for you to pay with your face. Radio announcers will not be happy.
Romance novels are wildly popular on Scribd, so the subscription ebook publisher is cutting back on the number of titles it hosts. Seems you can’t make money by charging a flat monthly fee and paying authors every time someone downloads their books unless the books are duds.
The “Best Use of the Streisand Effect” award goes to Brooklyn artist Julia "Parbunkells" Weist, who posted a photo of a 17th-Century English word and asked the Internet not to copy it.
How many iPhone 6s does it take to stop a bullet fired from an AK-74 assault rifle? EveryThingApplePro, a YouTube channel run by crazy people in Portland, OR, decided to find out.
If you reserved a copy of Windows 10, don’t hold your breath waiting for it to be downloaded automatically to your hard drive on the new OS’ July 29 release date. Microsoft plans to deliver Win 10 first to Windows Insider beta testers, then gradually roll it out worldwide. That’s probably a good idea with a radically different product.
A totally solar-powered airplane set a new distance record, flying from Japan to Hawaii in five days. That’s the longest leg in a round-the-world journey that’s expected to take five months, not counting ground time.
The Hacking Team was hacked and 400 GB of embarrassing email and documents were released on Bittorrent networks. The global spy-for-hire firm has long been criticized for doing business with repressive governments.
When his only computer crashed, aspiring rap singer “Prince Harvey” spent four months covertly recording his first album on Macs for sale in various Manhattan Apple Stores. Still no public restrooms, however.
“Floating” videos whose windows remain on-screen as a use scrolls down are coming to Facebook soon, because you wouldn’t want to miss any video ads while checking your news feed.
Republic Wireless is refunding actual hard cash to customers who don’t use all of their monthly cellular data allowances, to encourage WiFi use.
A fully-functional Star Trek Communicator, styled after the one in the original series, can be yours for just $150. It links to a smartphone via Bluetooth. Beam me one, Scotty!
A paper shredder will destroy an unwanted CD, but this high-speed CD cannon powered by an angle grinder from Harbor Freight Tools does the job with more style.
It turns out that androids really do dream of electric sheep. Google set up a feedback loop in its image recognition neural network, and the resulting “dreams” of the machines are eerie.
Those $199 Dr. Dre Beats headphones consist of parts that cost less than $17 and 30% of their weight is in parts that do nothing but add “heft.”
Samsung demoed a “see-through” tractor-trailer truck with a camera on its front and a huge LCD display on its back, allowing drivers to see whether it’s safe to pass. Of course, an evil driver could play a recording of an empty road.
Sarasota, Florida, police had videos of a man molesting children, but his face was concealed. For the first time, law enforcers were able to digitally enhance the videos enough to identify the creep’s fingerprint and nail him.
It's Official... Gmail's “Undo Send” feature, previously an experimental Gmail Labs option, now lets all users recall a hasty email within a short period after hitting the Send button.
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 15 Jul 2015
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- A Big Milestone + Geekly Update (Posted: 15 Jul 2015)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved