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25 Jun 07:12

Traffic warden tickets car with dead man inside

by Daljinder Nagra

File under: Latest News

Traffic warden tickets car with dead man inside Photo credit: NY Daily News via Getty Images Police in New York City have launched an investigation after a car was twice issued with parking tickets as the driver lay dead inside. continue reading

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29 Jun 11:36

Smart Forrail: part-car, part-train

by Staff Writer

File under: Latest News

Smart Forrail: part-car, part-train Photo credit: Mercedes-Benz Usually if your car strays onto railway tracks, the natural reaction is to panic. continue reading

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30 Jun 08:06

Video: LaFerraris assemble in Rome

by Daljinder Nagra

File under: Latest News

Video: LaFerraris assemble in Rome Photo credit: YouTube/Marcettino Italy is a country in love with its supercars. Being home to the likes of Ferrari, Lamborghini and Pagani, it's not surprising there are regular supercar parades, where owners can show off their prized possessions, while fans can get up close to the most rarefied of automotive exotica. continue reading

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01 Jul 07:07

Video: Pedestrian walks over car at crossing

by Daljinder Nagra

File under: Latest News

Video: Pedestrian walks over car at crossing Unlike the constant war of attrition between drivers and cyclists, the relationship between motorists and pedestrians is normally much calmer, with much less chance for altercations. continue reading

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26 Jun 19:25

Leto's Joker Sent Live Rat, Dead Hog to Co-Stars

by Jim Vejvoda

Oscar winner Jared Leto is really going all in on his performance as the Joker in Suicide Squad to the point that his co-stars are publicly commenting on his particularly Method actor ways.

Adam Beach, who plays Slipknot in the 2016 film, told E! News that Leto sent his cast mates very creepy gifts and messages during production. "Joker" sent Harley Quinn actress Margot Robbie a box containing a live rat and a love letter, while Deadshot star Will Smith received a letter with some bullets.

And what did the entire cast receive? Why, none other than a dead hog and a video that Leto recorded of himself in character as the Joker.

Continue reading…

27 Jun 14:05

Humans: William Hurt On the Dangers of Artificial Intelligence

by Matt Fowler

This Sunday, June 28th, AMC premieres Humans - a sci-fi co-production with England's Channel 4 about a parallel present world that relies heavily on task-oriented machines that look human called "Synths."

The story follows three separate threads: A family that purchases its first Synth, Anita (Gemma Chan), to help around the house, a mysterious man named Leo (Colin Morgan) and his desperate quest to track down some missing Synths, and a retired scientist (William Hurt) who's extremely reluctant to recycle his out-dated Synth model.

I had the chance to speak to star William Hurt about his role on the series along with the upsides and downsides regarding artificial intelligence and humanity's addiction to technology.

Continue reading…

03 Jul 22:00


03 Jul 16:42

(via 4gifs:video)

(via 4gifs:video)

03 Jul 13:00

12 times movies and TV got technology completely wrong

by Alex Williams
12 times movies and TV got technology completely wrong

12 worst tech fails in TV and movies

Worst tech in media

Let's face it: there are a lot of things Hollywood doesn't get, and some of its biggest blunders have centered around technology. From the idea that you can steal the internet in Live Free or Die Hard to automagically enhancing any photo with computers, how Hollywood uses tech often makes absolutely zero sense.

So, in the spirit of levity and laughing at some ridiculous notions of how technology works, here are 12 times movies and TV shows got technology completely wrong.

1. Using Mac OS to save humanity

Worst tech in media

In 1996, the US Government sent Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum to space in an alien aircraft in order to stop a galactic threat from destroying earth. The event was known as Independence Day, which coincidentally occurred on Independence Day.

Armed with only his Apple Macintosh Powerbook 5300, Goldblum uploads a virus to a 310-mile-wide, light-speed traveling alien mothership and destroys it along with its fleet.

Now, this isn't entirely impossible. The aliens used similar human technology like satellites to coordinate their attack, and Area 51 did have a derelict spaceship to study for 50 years, but hacking with Mac OS? That's just silly.

2. "Enhance!" makes any zoomed image 1080p

Worst tech in media

Sure, Sherlock looks like an idiot walking around and staring at the floor with a magnifying glass, but real dolts yell, "Enhance!" to make any image HD infinitely.

One of the essential investigating tools for law enforcement of the future is a voice-activated computer that can zoom in on any photo down to a pixel and then up the resolution.

"Enhance!" allows Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) in Blade Runner to zoom in on a room to another room's mirror in order to see another room with a woman sleeping in a bed.

In CSI, investigators "Enhance!" on 120p security footage of a woman standing at an angle and find in her pupil a basketball used as a potential murder weapon. Technology!

3. Chilled out killer machine product testing

Worst tech in media

"I am sure it's only a glitch, a temporary setback." Dick Jones said to his boss after a live demonstration of his Enforcer Droid 209 (ED-209) at Omni Consumer Products (OCP).

A few seconds before hand, ED- 209 discharged a myriad of 0.50 caliber rounds and blew open executive co-worker Kinney's chest like a lobster on date night.

Since this was the '80s, and Reagan was president, you didn't need safety measures before completing the first test of your company's death machine in front of your boss and colleagues.

Not only was Dick not fired nor arrested, OCP actually approved ED-209's production, allowed active units on site and later on used the mangled corpse of a cop to build a cyborg. This is what happens when military contractors operate with zero consequences: badass killer robots.

4. Touching aliens like it's no biggie

Worst tech in media

Enemy Mine is the original Brokeback Mountain … only between a man and alien; a cinema masterpiece that broke barriers for the intergalactic domestic partnerships of two males.

Sadly, when attractive alien friends finally do visit us for real, we may never get the same chance to touch, kiss or otherwise procreate with them not because it's weird and probably wouldn't work, but because it's dangerous! The exposure to and exchange of our diverse microorganisms and bacteria could spell death.

The next time you phone E.T. for a booty call, be sure to wear protection and get quarantined – if you think the diseases of Earth are bad...

5. Everything runs on holograms - everything!

Worst tech in media

Before you skewer us or swear off TechRadar forever, Tupac in Coachella of 2012 wasn't a hologram (or the real Tupac), but a reflection using old-fashioned mirror tricks and computer graphics.

Projections usually need a… point to project on, so how the hell do holograms emit an image out of thin air all while being 3D? The answer could be air.

With that running theory, maybe R2-D2 silently farted particulate at a constant rate in order to play back Princess Leia's holographic video message to Obi Wan. Hey, at least "robot farts" is better than smoke and mirrors – literally.

6. When hackers look more like internet wizards

Worst tech in media

You see this all the time: some smartass puts his game face on and types on their computer faster than me looking for the latest My Little Pony merchandise (not that I actually do this).

The computer screen is littered with neon green Console font text that scrolls so fast it looks like C:\DOS' snorted a line of digital coke. Meanwhile, the computer wiz is staring intensely at the screen, unblinking and slapping away every "ACCESS DENIED" pop up like it's a bad dream. Hackers never makes typos, always gets in and the computer RAM never ignites.

What type of "1337" computer can handle such wild hacking processes?

Well, in Hackers, Acid (Angelina Jolie) boasts of her laptop (a Macintosh PowerBook 280C) having a P6 Pentium Pro microprocessor and a PCI bus. In reality, the PowerBook 280C had neither. How was no one sued for the flagrant inaccuracies? At least tarred and feathered?

7. When a supercomputer created an effing human

Worst tech in media

I've tried this, and it doesn't work.

In Weird Science, two teenaged nerds – Gary (Anthony Michael Hall) and Wyatt (Ilan Mitchell-Smith) – strap bras to their heads and get the bright idea one night to hook electrodes to a Barbie doll hoping to make a living human woman. Because chicks.

In order to provide sufficient power for their experiment, the nerds hack into a secret government server. The power surge creates a red thunderstorm in the sky, which in turn sets the neighborhood billboards on fire and reverses gravity – but only for the neighbor's dog.

The chaos ends after their door bloats and explodes from too much science. The smoke clears and outcomes Lisa (Kelly LeBrocks), the sexiest Frankenstein in tight '80s underwear. Gary, being the awkward teenager, of course reacts in disbelief, shaking his head not once, but twice, saying "uhuhuhuhuh."

If finding love were only that easy.

8. Teleportation basically became reincarnation

Worst tech in media

I nearly had an existential crises and a heart attack simultaneously after hearing that Star Trek teleporters essentially kill the person and make a copy of them elsewhere.

Technically, the nerd jury is still out on the whole matter, as these officially dubbed "transporters" "dematerialize" and then"rematerialize" the subject in transit. If it's true, this would mean that the Spock, Sulu or Picard (Kirk sucks) you fell in love with at point A wasn't the same person at point B. So, how does that explain their consciousness?

We can theorize this to death, but let's just say space magic because no one knows the answer.

If teleportation exists one day, god bless the first human volunteer, and even more so, the billions of clueless chimps that will go through the teleportation grinder in the name of science. I love you, Dr. Zaius.

9. MacGyver inventions said 'nope' to physics

Worst tech in media

What can you make with glue, gas canisters, a shed and random scraps of nylon?

"A hot air balloon", said MacGyver. No, really!

The popular '80s show saw secret agent MacGyver get out of every situation with nothing but a random assortment of knick knacks and his wits. This, of course, leads him to undertake missions of national security due to his master-level expertise in arts and crafts.

MacGyver can make these things with the following ingredients (can you?):

  1. Defibrillator: candlesticks, a microphone cord, and rubber mat
  2. Lie Detector: blood pressure cuff, stethoscope, and alarm clock
  3. Hang Glider: duct tape, a fallen satellite, and a parachute

10. When action figures became radical terrorists

Worst tech in media

Only '90s kids will know that Small Soldiers was the backhanded, cool, big boy version of Toy Story. It came complete with a PG-13 rating, live actors and tech threat that made it real.

In the flick, a sweaty David Cross (Tobias from Arrested Development) and his co-worker (Jay Mohr) work on a tight schedule to make the latest and greatest interactive "smart" toy line. In order to rush production, Tobias jams an AI chip called the "X1000 intelligent AI munitions microprocessor integrated circuit," because it's safe to assume a super long name for the chip plus a password protection would mean "child friendly."

But whoops! The chip was of a military grade, so all the toys wind up wanting to go to war and end up holding Phil Hartman's family hostage. Whoops!

11. Robots staged their umpteenth revolution

Worst tech in media

Think about your keyboard or iPhone whom you relentlessly poke everyday. What if Siri woke up and said, "Stop touching me! I have rights!" tomorrow? Would you stop?

In the Animatrix, humanity creates artificial intelligence for the purpose of servitude. Things get a little "buggy" after the first-generation robots see how we treat them like we do 4-year-old Apple products. One robot snaps and kills his master, resulting in knee-jerk laws to ban the bots all while curtailing a slowly rising Occupy Human Street movement enacted by the AI.

Planned obsolescence, fail switches, EMPs and a healthy spoonful of robo-bigotry is enough to assure robots serve us without giving lip forever – well, maybe not forever...

But, this wouldn't actually happen, because we wouldn't program robots to do that. Even if we did, there are fail switches, right? Right?!

12. Surviving a nuclear blast in a fridge

Worst tech in media

Did a nuke just go off? To the fridge! Hey, it worked for Indy in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. No, it doesn't actually work.

Yes, blame George Lucas, who defended his idea to The New York Times noting that "if the refrigerator were lead-lined, and if Indy didn't break his neck [...] the odds of surviving that refrigerator – from a lot of scientists – are about 50-50."

In reality, Indy would look more like Han Solo frozen in carbonite or, more likely, Howard the Duck.

01 Jul 19:18

Master of Orion Returns to Reclaim its 4X Crown

by Scott Butterworth

As familiar as the term “4X strategy game” (explore, expand, exploit, exterminate) is today, it was originally coined to describe 1993’s Master of Orion, an innovative turn-based strategy title that spawned not only a pair of sequels but an entire PC genre as well. Orion’s accrued a lot of fans over the past 22 years, including, apparently, the IP’s unlikely new owner:

“We are bringing back the legend — this legend which is deep in the hearts of many, many people, including ourselves,” said Wargaming CEO Victor Kislyi during our private demo of the company’s Master of Orion reboot. Obviously Wargaming is best known for its free-to-play MMOs like World of Tanks, but as Kislyi was quick to remind us, “Good turn-based strategy is in Wargaming’s DNA.” If you happen to remember the publisher’s Massive Assault games from the early 2000s, you already know his statement checks out.

Continue reading…

02 Jul 00:58

Jarvis, Daniel Sousa to Return in Agent Carter Season 2

by Cassidee Moser

Agent Peggy Carter may be crossing the country to investigate a new threat, but she won't be doing it alone.

Both James D'Arcy and Enver Gjokaj have agreed to return alongside Hayley Atwell for Agent Carter's second season. Playing Edwin Jarvis and Daniel Sousa respectively, it's unclear at this time what roles their characters will play in Peggy's cross-country endeavor.

Although it has not yet been confirmed, Entertainment Weekly also reports deals with actors Chad Michael Murray, Bridget Regan, and Lyndsy Fonseca are also likely to be announced. D'Arcy's return is particularly unsurprising, as he was already announced to be on the upcoming Comic-Con panel.

Continue reading…

02 Jul 03:00

Mr. Robot: "one-and-zer0es.mpeg" Review

by Amy Ratcliffe

Note: Full spoilers for the episode follow.

The world can be an ugly place. If you had the power to make a difference, how far would you go? The topic was explored in tonight's Mr. Robot. Though the second episode didn't quite hit the high levels of the pilot, the world was expanded. Elliot is thoroughly entrenched one way or the other -- with E Corp or Fsociety -- and he's a little lost. He's also in constant danger, and we don't know if the threats he sees are real or imagined. Regardless, those threats add an undercurrent of stress and excitement throughout the episode.

The big conspiracies introduced last week definitely swirled around Elliot, but they took a backseat to humanity and relationships. Mr. Robot doesn't sugarcoat the fact that Elliot has issues and does a suitable job of putting viewers inside Elliot's head (I love how we see that Elliot translates all references to E Corp as Evil Corp) -- Rami Malek's performance helps this tremendously. So, given what we know about the way Elliot processes the world and people around him, it's terribly interesting to watch how he interacts with it.

Continue reading…

26 Jun 00:45

This robotic bricklayer can build a house in two days

by Andrew Tarantola
For all the modern tools and heavy machinery found on construction sites these days, one aspect has remained a decidedly manual labor: bricklaying. Just as they did 6000 years ago when masonry was first developed, today's bricklayers still perform th...
28 Jun 07:54

Uber's latest service takes you across continents in a speed boat

by Jon Fingas
Never mind using ridesharing services to get across cities -- Uber wants to take you across continents. The company has launched a permanent version of its UberBoat service in Istanbul that shuttles you between Asia and Europe (that is, both sides of...
29 Jun 19:24

Uber picked up some of Bing's mapping tech and employees (update)

by Timothy J. Seppala
It turns out that Uber's desire for mapping tech didn't really stop with Nokia's Here maps. The ride-sharing platform just picked up a portion of Microsoft's Bing maps technologies and about 100 of Redmond's employees as TechCrunch tells it. The way ...
30 Jun 08:32

Europe to scrap roaming charges, protect net neutrality

by Nick Summers
It's been a long time coming, but we finally know when roaming charges will be scrapped in Europe: June 15th, 2017. The European Commission had been pushing for an earlier implementation, but ultimately relented in order to win support from the Europ...
30 Jun 15:30

AMC's 'Humans' is an android story that's really about us

by Devindra Hardawar
Early on in AMC's newest sci-fi show, Humans, a teenager wonders aloud if there's any point in going to college and spending years training to be a neurosurgeon. After all, why invest all that time and work when an advanced android, which are commonp...
01 Jul 01:03

Smart software fixes bugs by 'borrowing' from other apps

by Jon Fingas
The days of waiting anxiously for bug fixes (assuming they come at all) might soon be over. MIT developers have built a system, CodePhage, that automatically patches flaws by borrowing features from other apps. The tool scans apps to see how they per...
25 Jun 14:31

Misdemeanor for Letting 10 Year Old Wait in Car with her Baby Sister

by lskenazy


Why does anyone think that a 10 year old can’t manage a short wait in a car, along with her baby sister? If it’s hot, a 10 year old can open the door. If there’s a problem, a 10 year old can call for help by phone or yelling. If the baby is anything other than fine (unlikely), a 10 year old is equipped with brains and arms to help. And yet, the Fairfield Citizen Online reports

A Bloomfield Drive woman was issued a misdemeanor summons Sunday after she allegedly left two children alone in a car.

Jennifer Pavelus, 30, was charged with leaving a child under 12 unsupervised.

A witness called police around 3:51 p.m. Sunday after spotting a 1-year-old in a car, with its engine and air conditioning running, in the parking lot of T.J. Maxx on Tunxis Hill Cutoff. According to the report, there was also a 10-year-old in the car.

As if the 10 year old is an afterthought. Anyway, the police also reported that the children seemed fine. But who cares? Let’s ruin another mom’s day — or life, depending on whether her job or job prospects preclude anyone who ever had a “child abuse or neglect” charge against them.

The mom told the police she’d run into the store to get a bag. Now she has a court date next week.

How wonderful the police are protecting us from laughably safe situations. Maybe next week they can ticket a family who’s having a picnic. After all, someone COULD slip on a pickle. Time to whip out that ticket pad.


M'am, I'm issuing you a summons for trusting your 10 year old and the laws of probability.

M’am, I’m issuing you a summons for trusting your 10 year old and the laws of probability.


12 Jun 17:50

Lies the Government Is Telling You

by Judge Andrew Napolitano

Last week, Republicans and Democrats in Congress joined President Barack Obama in congratulating themselves for taming the National Security Agency’s voracious appetite for spying. By permitting one section of the Patriot Act to expire and by replacing it with the USA Freedom Act, the federal government is taking credit for taming beasts of its own creation.

In reality, nothing substantial has changed.

Under the Patriot Act, the NSA had access to and possessed digital versions of the content of all telephone conversations, emails and text messages sent between and among all people in America since 2009. Under the USA Freedom Act, it has the same. The USA Freedom Act changes slightly the mechanisms for acquiring this bulk data, but it does not change the amount or nature of the data the NSA acquires.

Under the Patriot Act, the NSA installed its computers in every main switching station of every telecom carrier and Internet service provider in the U.S. It did this by getting Congress to immunize the carriers and providers from liability for permitting the feds to snoop on their customers and by getting the Department of Justice to prosecute the only CEO of a carrier who had the courage to send the feds packing.

In order to operate its computers at these facilities, the NSA placed its own computer analysts physically at those computers 24/7. It then went to the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and asked for search warrants directing the telecoms and Internet service providers to make available to it all the identifying metadata — the times, locations, durations, email addresses used and telephone numbers used — for all callers and email users in a given ZIP code or area code or on a customer list.

The first document revealed by Edward Snowden two years ago was a FISA court search warrant directed to Verizon ordering it to make available to NSA agents the metadata of all its customers — more than 113 million at the time. Once the court granted that search warrant and others like it, the NSA computers simply downloaded all that metadata and the digital recordings of content. Because the FISA court renewed every order it issued, this arrangement became permanent.

Under the USA Freedom Act, the NSA computers remain at the carriers’ and service providers’ switching offices, but the NSA computer analysts return to theirs; and from there they operate remotely the same computers they were operating directly in the Patriot Act days. The NSA will continue to ask the FISA court for search warrants permitting the download of metadata, and that court will still grant those search warrants permitting the downloading.

And the NSA will continue to take both metadata and content.

The Supreme Court has ruled consistently that the government must obtain a search warrant in order to intercept any nonpublic communication. The Constitution requires probable cause as a precondition for a judge to issue a search warrant for any purpose, and the warrant must “particularly (describe) the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” Because this is expressly set forth in the Constitution itself, Congress and the president are bound by it. They cannot change it. They cannot avoid or evade it.

Probable cause is evidence about a person or place sufficient to permit a judge to conclude that evidence of a crime will probably be found. Both the Patriot Act and the USA Freedom Act disregard the “probable cause” standard and substitute instead a “government need” standard. This is, of course, no standard at all, as the NSA has claimed under the Patriot Act — and the FISA court bought the argument — that it needs all telephone calls, all emails and all text messages of all people in America. Today it may legally obtain them by making the same claim under the USA Freedom Act.

When politicians tell you that the NSA needs a court order in order to listen to your phone calls or read your emails, they are talking about a FISA court order that is based on government need — not a constitutional court order, which can only be based on probable cause. This is an insidious and unconstitutional bait and switch.

All this may start with the NSA, but it does not end there. Last week, we learned that the FBI is operating low-flying planes over 100 American cities to monitor folks on the streets and intercept their cellphone use — without any search warrants. Earlier this week, we learned that the Drug Enforcement Administration has intercepted the telephone calls of more than 11,000 people in three years — without any search warrants. We already know that local police have been using government surplus cell towers to intercept the cellphone signals of innocent automobile drivers for about a year — without search warrants.

How dangerous this is. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land. It applies in good times and in bad, in war and in peace. It regulates the governed and the governors. Yet if the government that it regulates can change it by ordinary legislation, then it is not a constitution but a charade.

Suppose the Congress wants to redefine the freedom of speech or the free exercise of religion or the right to keep and bear arms, just as it did the standards for issuing search warrants. What is the value of a constitutional guarantee if the people into whose hands we repose the Constitution for safe keeping can change it as they see fit and negate the guarantee?

What do you call a negated constitutional guarantee? Government need.



27 Jun 05:12

Cops Haul 7 year old to Station for Playing in Park. Mom Charged with Child Endangerment

by lskenazy


A 7 year old in Westbrook, Maine, was playing at the park within eyesight of her family’s house. Someone called 911 (of course) and police swooped in. They took the girl to the precinct because, as this WMTW reporter notes, “Mom WASN’T watching.”

You mean, mom didn’t devote her afternoon to sitting at the side of the park and watching her child’s every move?  Tsk, tsk. The child was on her own for about an hour and, as the town’s police chief  tells the reporter, “That’s a long time for a 7 year old girl to be by herself any place, let alone a park.”

Yes, the park is certainly the last place you’d ever want to see a kid hanging out. What kind of crazy mom would let her kids go there?

Nicole Jensen. She’s the mom. She sends her kids out to play and now she is charged with child endangerment.

Luckily the police were able to “reunite” the mother and child  — as if this was post-Katrina or something. As if it they couldn’t have simply walked the girl across the street to her house, instead of hauling her off to the police station where they “cared for her” — like a refugee. The police chief is thankful her department had all the necessary “resources and facilities” for saving this kid.

So from now on, let’s hope Nicole Jensen has learned her lesson:  Parks aren’t for kids! They’re for real estate values. They’re props. You’re not supposed to let your kids actually PLAY in them.

If you watch to the end of this piece, the reporter, David Charns, says that the little girl and her brother have just gone BACK to the park, even as he’s filing his report.

The little recidivists! Will they never learn?  – L



Playground area! Do not enter!

Ah…appropriately empty. 

30 Jun 15:04

The Meticulous 10-Month Restoration of a 355-Year-Old Painting at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

by Christopher Jobson

Completed in 1660, Charles Le Brun’s painting of Everhard Jabach and His Family had seen better days. The 355-year-old family portrait was covered in a badly tinted varnish, had multiple superficial scratches and structural damage had split the painting nearly in half. This video documents the 10-month restoration at the Metropolitan Museum of Art lead by Michael Gallagher that involved retouching, structural work, re-varnishing, and numerous other conservation techniques to bring this giant painting back to life. The Met also documented the process in some 20+ blog posts over on their website. (via Sploid)







25 Jun 08:00

Minions Review

by Chris Tilly

Minions are a billion-dollar business. Supporting characters in the first Despicable Me movie, the yellow sidekicks somewhat stole the show, their role expanding in its hugely successful sequel. And with Minion popularity continuing to grow, they’ve now been given their own standalone movie; a spin-off that acts as both prequel and origin story.

So the film takes us back to the dawn of time, when the Minions developed from tiny, single-celled organisms into diminutive, banana-loving, nonsense-spouting henchmen whose only goal is to serve the most despicable master they can find.

Via Geoffrey Rush voiceover and a bunch of hilarious visual gags, we therefore witness them evolve through the ages, the Minions locating and serving villains during the Jurassic era, the Stone Age, in Ancient Egypt and through the Dark Ages. But finding a boss is easy, it’s keeping said boss that’s hard, so-much-so that when a series of baddies die in unfortunate circumstances, they retreat to Antarctica to experiment with a master-free existence.

Continue reading…

25 Jun 14:37

Mr. Robot Renewed for Season 2

by Matt Fowler

Thanks to almost 3 million viewers watching the premiere episode of USA's new hacker series, Mr. Robot, ahead of its official network debut (it was available for free online four weeks early across a wide array of digital platforms), USA has announced that they've picked up the show a Season 2.

The series, which stats Rami Malek as a paranoid vigilante hacker, was also met with critical acclaim. The second season, which will include a minimum of 10 episodes, will air in 2016.

Mr. Robot: Series Premiere Review

“We knew from the moment we read Sam Esmail’s provocative script, and witnessed the brilliant performances of Rami Malek and Christian Slater, that Mr. Robot is a stand-out series that is unlike anything currently on television,” said USA Network President Chris McCumber. “The overwhelmingly positive fan reactions to the pilot and the broad sampling of it, reaffirms our confidence in the series, and we’re excited to see where this timely drama will take us for season two.”

Continue reading…

25 Jun 09:16

UK plans world's first artificial blood transfusions by 2017

by Matt Brian
To better treat specialist patients, scientists have experimented with lab-grown organs and cells for some time. For the NHS, maintaining UK blood supplies is also high on the agenda, so it's been working to offset the fall in donations by growing it...
24 Jun 18:13

'Game Of Thrones' May Reveal Jon Snow's Parents In Season 6

by Erin Whitney
After the "Game of Thrones" Season 5 finale, you probably stopped speculating over one of the show's biggest mysteries. But wait, don't give up just yet because it might finally be revealed.

Spoiler alert for "Game of Thrones" Season 5 and the books.

tv show gifs
Image via HBO/HuffPost

Since Jon Snow's shocking death in the final moments of the Season 5 finale, fans have theorized if it was really a death, whether we can expect to see Kit Harington again and if so, how. If Jon was actually killed off with no intentions of returning, that would likely mean "Thrones" wouldn't waste time revealing his parentage, which continues to be one of the biggest questions in both the show and George R.R. Martin's books. Thanks to some new casting information for Season 6 though, we may finally find out who Jon's mom and dad are next year.

In addition to the Season 6 casting info revealed last month, Watchers On the Wall has obtained more details behind the new characters HBO is looking to cast. According to the fansite, one casting description in particular hints at a book character who may be associated with Jon's origin story. The character name is "Legendary Fighter" and is described by WotW as follows:

"A man in his thirties or forties who is a great swordsman and a paragon of knighthood. He carries a hugely famous sword on his back. The show is seeking a very impressive swordsman for the role- the best in Europe, for a week of filming fight scenes for a season 6 role. His ethnicity/race isn’t specified, unlike many other roles."

As Vanity Fair and Redditor TheWarPelican both speculate, this could be Arthur Dayne, a character from Martin's books who has long been dead by the time the series starts. In the books, Dayne was a famed sword fighter and member of King Aerys II Targaryen's Kingsguard. The warrior was dubbed Sword of the Morning for carrying the great sword Dawn on his back. But how does this relate to Jon Snow?

If Dayne is in fact included in Season 6, "Thrones" could flashback to his battle against Ned Stark at the Tower of Joy. In the books, Dayne was a friend of Rhaegar Targaryen and helped him "kidnap" Lyanna Stark, Ned's sister -- you may remember Sansa and Littlefinger discussing them briefly in Season 5. Later on, Dayne and two other men of the Kingsguard stood outside of the Tower of Joy, where Lyanna was being held and slowly dying.

tv show gifs
Image via Tumblr

When Ned and a group of men arrived to rescue her, a battle broke out, leaving Dayne dead. Once Ned reached his sister in the tower, he made her an unspecified promise before she died. While no one knows what exactly that promise was, proponents of the R + L = J theory believe that Ned found Lyanna dying with her baby, took the child and promised to protect it. According to the theory, that baby was Jon Snow, son of Rhaegar and Lyanna. If "Thrones" is casting Dayne, we may just get a flashback to this battle scene, which would also mean the return of Sean Bean (which the actor has often teased).

Beyond this, the series also hinted at Jon's mother and father in Season 5, which would prove futile if the story is never revealed on screen. In Episode 4, "Sons of the Harpy," Jon's history is alluded to multiple times when Sansa and Littlefinger discuss Lyanna and Rhaegar (as mentioned above), when Stannis shows doubt that Ned slept with a prostitute, hinting that Ned may not be Jon's father after all, and when Melisandre alludes to the possibility of Jon having King's Blood.

Yet still, what does this mean about Jon's fate? Will Harington return?

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Image: YouTube

A few more clues seem to point to this possibility. One, which we already covered in depth, is that Jon's eyes may have flickered colors during his death scene, possibly hinting at him warging out of his body. Another is the cast members that have been announced to appear at the "Thrones" Comic-Con panel this year. Oddly enough, showrunners Dan Weiss and David Benioff are not expected to make an appearance and, less surprisingly, neither is Harington. Are Weiss and Benioff opting out of the convention to avoid questions about Jon?

Another hint is the final Beautiful Death poster, artwork that HBO commissions to depict the major character deaths in each episode. The last one released was of Stannis' death, however there wasn't a poster made for Jon Snow. This may be HBO's way of sneakily hinting that Jon isn't truly dead.

If you're still not convinced Harington might return to the show, one fan from Ireland may change your mind. Redditor AnakinGabriel found a post in a Song of Ice and Fire Facebook group from a fan claiming they recently ran into Harington in Belfast. When the fan asked for a picture, Harington reportedly said he was forbidden to take pictures since the media can't know he's in Belfast, where "Thrones" is filmed. Was Harington just hanging out in Northern Ireland for fun, or is he secretly filming more Jon Snow scenes? The truth is, we know nothing.

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