Deutsche Telekom said it had found no indication that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) and Britain's GCHQ had obtained access to its computer network, but said it was investigating the matter following a report in Sunday's Der Spiegel magazine. "We are looking into every indication of possible manipulations but have not yet found any hint of that in our investigations so far," a Telekom spokesman said in a statement on Sunday. Der Spiegel said it had seen information suggesting the NSA and GCHQ had gained access to the networks of Deutsche Telekom and smaller German provider Netcologne.
This is the promise of the near future: all of your gadgets — from your smartphone to your fridge — will be able to talk to each other, wirelessly communicating whether you're around or not. No external power required The tiny chips, which are powered by harvesting radio signals and don't require external power, are small enough to fit on gadgets in your home, but still powerful enough to send and receive transmissions.
Apple's proud announcement that its new iPhone could be used to buy goods in a single swipe left customers non-plussed in Japan, where mobile contactless payments have been normal fare for a decade. A type of Near Field Communication (NFC) chip, known in Japan as FeliCa, was introduced to the Japanese mobile market in June 2004 and has been been implanted in almost all phones sold in the country since. Ten years ago the charismatic Takeshi Natsuno, who was then multimedia services director of Japanese mobile operator NTT Docomo, extolled the benefits of swapping cash for cell phones. FeliCa was conceived by Sony way back in 1989 and first used in the Hong Kong underground railway system in 1997 -- in a card known as Octopus -- inspiring cities around the world to use similar technology in their own contactless transport cards.
A little over two years after landing, Curiosity has reached a milestone. NASA recently announced that the rover has arrived at the base of Mount Sharp, a 3.4-mile-high mountain that Curiosity has been heading towards since July of 2013. The initial landing was in Gale Crater, and the total journey has been around 9km or 5.5 miles — a number that becomes more impressive if you consider that Curiosity was designed to travel a maximum of 660 feet per day and navigate difficult terrain on its six wheels.
"Marge vs. the Monorail" is one of the most beloved episodes of The Simpsons, largely thanks to one scene, in which confidence man Lyle Lanley leads the town of Springfield in a song preaching the benefits of elevated transportation. The episode was written by Conan O'Brien during his time on the show, and this weekend, he performed the tune in front of a crowd. As part of the live show "The Simpsons Take the Bowl," a 25th anniversary celebration at the Hollywood Bowl amphitheater, Conan took the stage dressed as Lanley, leading the Los Angeles Gay Mens' Choir through the song.
Anyone looking to support women suffering from harassment online has a surprisingly simple place to start, says Anita Sarkeesian, founder of the web video series Feminist Frequency. "One of the most radical things you can do is to actually believe women when they talk about their experiences," Sarkeesian told the audience today at XOXO Festival in Portland. It's radical in part because of misinformation campaigns organized against high-profile women that accuse them of making up the threats against them — and it's an issue that Sarkeesian has recent experience dealing with. It generated a flood of insults and violent threats against Sarkeesian from gamers who are threatened by her calls for more equal treatment of the sexes in their depictions in popular culture.
Look, there's nothing wrong with being excited about the next Apple product. The new iPhones are sure to own the market, and are already breaking records for pre-orders. But how about we take a minute for the crazy ones not buying into the hype? How about saying something for the people buying a Moto X or HTC One M8 for Windows?
Windows 8 debuted with a notification system to allow apps to generate brief alerts, but the operating system lacked a central Notification Center to collect and display them all. Microsoft appears to be planning to provide a Notification Center in Windows 9. WinFuture has published a new video of the feature in action, providing an early look at how the Notification Center will work. The functionality appears to be similar to the Windows Phone 8.1 Notification Center, with the ability to dismiss individual notifications or clear all at once.
Lee Griggs is an artist who makes colorful, abstract renderings. In the series here, he creates surreal images reminiscent of a city under the ocean, or some foreign planet. They're consistently breathtaking.
Perhaps the most impressive thing about the very first Formula E race is how much it looked like the new sport belongs in the world of auto racing. The evenly-matched electric cars put on a mostly dazzling show around a very tight course on the streets of Beijing, and Formula 1 test driver Lucas Di Grassi became the first ever winner in the series. The brand new series is, aside from being electric, designed very similarly to F1, from the look of the cars to being run by the same governing body (the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile, or FIA). The result was white-knuckle racing from the first lap until the final turn when Nico Prost, son of F1 legend Alain Prost (and a reserve driver in that sport) attempted to block former F1 driver Nick Heidfeld and sent his opponent careening into a barrier where he went airborne and flipped multiple times.
HP Lovecraft's At the Mountains of Madness is, among other things, a cautionary tale. Explorers discover the realm of what they dub the "Elder Things," otherworldly beings who created a sophisticated and beautiful civilization on Earth by engineering monstrous "shoggoths" to serve their grand visions. With every need served, the civilization degraded, until its citizens met their doom at the amoebic appendages of the horrors they had created but failed to control.
California wants to stop companies from retaliating against customers who leave bad reviews. Last Tuesday, Governor Jerry Brown signed a law that bans them from adding "non-disparagement" clauses to their terms of service. Such clauses could let caterers, hotels, or other businesses fine customers who write negative reviews on places like Yelp and TripAdvisor. California, as far as we can tell, is the first state to ban customer non-disparagement clauses.