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05 Dec 04:04

How cool is that?!

How cool is that?!

05 Dec 04:03

Ferrari driving Doctors

by Erik Marinovich

When Jennifer Daniel sends you an email asking you if you want to do a cover for Bloomberg Businessweek you reply, ¥€$. It’s not everyday you get to use lettering as a graphic device to poke fun at a topic most of us are aware of. Attached below are the 3 sketches from the first round.

05 Dec 01:22


by OHnewsroom

Editor talking to reader who was complaining because one local Christmas event was covered instead of another: “If you’d like to manage our overtime you can come in and get hired.”

05 Dec 01:06

Mastodon Recording Track for Monsters Inc. Prequel

by Evan Minsker


Mastodon Recording Track for Monsters Inc. Prequel

Monsters Inc. was a heartwarming Pixar film with original music by Randy Newman. Monsters University is the prequel, and while Newman is on board once again, so are Atlanta metal titans Mastodon. As Metal Injection reports (via Consequence of Sound), the band posted on Facebook that they're writing and recording a song for the film. 

The movie is out June 21. Below, find the film's trailer and Mastodon's video for "Black Tongue".

Monsters University:

Mastodon - "Black Tongue":

05 Dec 01:04

"It’s a cultural icon! Or something."

“It’s a cultural icon! Or something.”

- Former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain, on his 9-9-9 tax plan.
05 Dec 01:04

"He won’t follow anyone for now. He will be followed."

“He won’t follow anyone for now. He will be followed.”

- – Vatican spokesman, about the pope on Twitter.
04 Dec 23:41

Verizon Wireless to begin using mobile usage data for new targeted ad service

by Justin Rubio

fucking great; all carriers suck forever

verizon windows phone

Verizon Wireless has announced that it is launching a marketing initiative that will send customers advertisements based on what activities they perform on its network. The new Verizon Selects program uses location data, as well as both browser and app usage, to help target users with coupons or promotions tailored to their particular interests. Subscribers will then get relevant offers via email, text message, standard mail, or through online and mobile advertisements.

Verizon is careful to point out that it doesn't share customer information with outside parties, but that hasn't prevented the company from taking criticism on the topic. Its Precision Market Insights program — of which the new program is a part — has recently come...

Continue reading…

04 Dec 23:13

Apple app store having issues: can’t update apps, can’t download new Gmail for iPhone

by John Koetsier

gmail-email-iphone-downApple’s app store appears to be having some technical challenges today. Perhaps it’s the massive influx of people downloading Google’s new Gmail app.

I personally haven’t been able to update apps all day, and apparently I’m not alone. Others can’t download apps either:

iTunes and App Store down for many, can't get or update apps #iPhone

John Morgan (@IPhonesAppMgr) November 30, 2012

Is @AppStore down?? Can’t download apps, “app no longer available” #frustrated #apple

 Rafael C. (@Rafo1580) December 04, 2012

It’s possible that the new Gmail app has something to do with the issue, as it seems to be particularly challenging to download and/or update. Devindra Hardawar, our national editor, was able to download the Gmail app, but only after deleting the existing app and re-installing. Others have been entirely out of luck:

Whoa. The new Gmail app for iOS bringing down the app store ?

Amit Bhor (@daamitt) December 04, 2012

When I tried to download the Gmail app for an earlier story, the App Store app on my phone could not find it, although it was most certainly visible on the web. Now I can see it, but cannot download it — as you can see in the title graphic for this post.

I’ve contacted Apple and asked for an explanation or statement, and will update this post if I hear anything.

The service is certainly not down for all — our own Tom Cheredar was also able to access the app store and download apps. If you can’t, there is only one option, however unpalatable as it is for us impatient denizens of the digital world … being patient:

Looks like the App Store is getting hammered; if you get a message about the new Gmail app not being available, try again later.

Lifehacker (@lifehacker) December 04, 2012

Filed under: Games, Mobile, Search, VentureBeat
04 Dec 22:54

Other Solar Systems Could Be More Habitable Than Ours

by Soulskill
SternisheFan sends word of new research out of Ohio State University into the possibility of life arising in other star systems: "Scattered around the Milky Way are stars that resemble our own sun—but a new study is finding that any planets orbiting those stars may very well be hotter and more dynamic than Earth. That's because the interiors of any terrestrial planets in these systems are likely warmer than Earth—up to 25 percent warmer, which would make them more geologically active and more likely to retain enough liquid water to support life, at least in its microbial form. ... 'If it turns out that these planets are warmer than we previously thought, then we can effectively increase the size of the habitable zone around these stars by pushing the habitable zone farther from the host star, and consider more of those planets hospitable to microbial life,' said Unterborn, who presented the results at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco this week."

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04 Dec 22:44

Trader Joe's Butter Chicken Recalled for Listeria

by Kara Baskin

Best left in the office fridge.

Maybe think twice before packing a microwave lunch tomorrow: 4,865 pounds of Trader Joe's butter chicken with basmati rice have been recalled for possible listeria contamination.
The potentially tainted chicken was distributed primarily in the Northeast, with 17 stores in Massachusetts receiving the innocent-seeming, 12.5-ounce boxed lunch in question. Yum.

The chicken (product code 2012-10-31 and lot code 30512, to be exact) originated in Canada, and Canadian authorities are overseeing the recall. Trader Joe's has instructed stores to yank them from shelves. Still, "U.S. government officials said they were concerned consumers might have received or purchased the product but have not yet been notified about the recall," UPI reports. Consider this your warning: Stick to saag paneer (or those convenient little frozen burritos) until further notice.

Recall: Trader Joe's Butter Chicken [UPI]

Read more posts by Kara Baskin

Filed Under: recalls, butter chicken, listeria, trader joe's

04 Dec 21:50

Rain Shield, A Clever Redesign of the Umbrella

by EDW Lynch

aka how my half-broken umbrella already works

Rain Shield umbrella redesign

Rain Shield is an intriguing redesign of the umbrella that provides additional side coverage to protect against windblown rain or splashes (video). The canopy is supported by a single curved steel wire and a telescoping rod—there are no flimsy metal ribs or dangerous pointy tips. The Rain Shield design concept is by Lin Min-Wei and Liu Li-Hsiang.

Rain Shield umbrella redesign

Rain Shield umbrella redesign

Rain Shield umbrella redesign

via Yanko Design

images & video via Lin Min-Wei and Liu Li-Hsiang

04 Dec 21:49

fortrabbit - Pricing page allowing users to choose between a...



fortrabbit - Pricing page allowing users to choose between a sandal (bootstrap plan), running shoe (startup plan) or dress shoe (enterprise plan).

/via Marc Köhlbrugge

04 Dec 21:49

Triangle is as Triangle does

by Armin

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo, Before and After

Established in 1880 and selling educational materials since the 1890s, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) today is one of the leading and the world's largest providers of pre-K-12 education solutions and one of the longest-established publishing houses. Further official description: "HMH's interactive, results-driven education solutions are utilized by 60 million students in 120 countries, and its renowned and awarded novels, non-fiction, children's books and reference works are enjoyed by readers throughout the world." Today, HMH introduced a new identity designed by New York, NY-based Lippincott.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo and Identity

Existing range of logos. It's actually not that bad.

As we change, our brand needs to evolve as well. We must signal to the market that HMH reflects one company, one voice, one future.

Over the past six months, our strategic brand partner, Lippincott, has worked with us to develop a unifying strategic brand architecture, an updated identity system with new digital properties, and most importantly, a brand story that integrates HMH's rich past, current capabilities, and future aspirations--all in a way that speaks to our mission of fostering passionate, curious learners.

Our brand is intended to clarify our common purpose, define our space and capabilities, appeal to a broader audience, and signal a bold, confident future. It demonstrates our commitment to lifelong learning and reflects the collaborative and unique way we make learning more engaging and effective. I am confident that our new brand will inspire curiosity in us all.
— Provided release

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo and Identity

Key slide and message: "Inspire curiosity".

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo and Identity

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo and Identity

Full-color and single-color logos.

Logo animation.

The old logo was pretty good, in that old-school publisher kind of way, with an iconic boy riding on a dolphin as recognizable as other book industry, animal-based logos like Alfred A. Knopf's dog or Penguin's penguin. The icon and the typography meshed well with their angled edges and rough finish. So why change, right? Well, apparently, HMH has gone through some management, debt, and "balance sheet" issues since 2009 and things finally seem to be in order so it's, pardon the pun, a textbook case to signal change through a new identity and positioning.

Based on the brand's essence, "Inspire curiosity", the new logo is a great play on it, showing a triangle that, unless you were curious, you would never think of picking up and rotating it to reveal that it's not just a triangle but a cone and that by changing its position and point of view it turns into a completely different primary shape. It's perhaps a very literal logo and at first glance it's kind of weird to see the three shapes there but the payoff of trying to understand it is rewarding. It's no arrow-in-the-FedEx-logo kind of reveal, but it requires more power of deduction than a boy riding on a dolphin. I really like the icon, especially when you consider a couple of their main audiences are children and educators — the primary shapes are a perfect metaphor. The typography is as exciting as the clothing choices of your average history teacher and perhaps skew too much to the corporate side of things, making the logo look more like that of a law firm than a publisher. In application, not much happens. Just the logo in an appropriate corner and a nice use of yellow and dark gray; nothing exciting but nothing offensive either. Overall, I think it's a bold change that risks alienating anyone with an attachment to the old logo but who might also be clinging on to a book industry of yore and not acknowledging the demands put on a large business in the twenty-first century.

Very in-depth explanation about the rebranding. If you haven't experienced how big identity consulting firms and large clients talk about rebranding, this is a great primer.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo and Identity

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo and Identity

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo and Identity

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Logo and Identity

Thanks to Wayne Burrow for first tip.

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04 Dec 21:47

DICE slips in a Mirror’s Edge reference (tease?) into the latest Battlefield 3 expansion

by Jeffrey Grubb

Mirror's Edge Battlefield 3 DICE

DICE is fast transitioning into “that Battlefield studio,” even if EA Games vice president Patrick Soderlund is on the record stating plainly that the publisher doesn’t want the studio to become a factory that pumps out nothing but sequels to the popular first-person modern-military shooter.

So, what else could the talented Swedish company have in the works? Well, maybe this Easter egg in Battlefield 3 is a hint — or maybe it’s just an allusion to the otherwise forgotten game Mirror’s Edge.

In the latest map for Battlefield 3, called Aftermath, a pair of red shoes sit perched on the corner of one of the tall Iranian buildings. The sneakers look uncannily like those that Faith Connors (the protagonist in Mirror’s Edge) wears throughout her journey in the first-person parkour game.

The below video shows exactly where in the level players can find said shoes. While watching, listen for Faith’s phantom breathing that you can hear right as the clip ends:

On Nov. 21, in response to Soderlund’s claim that DICE wishes to diversify beyond Battlefield, a former lead producer at DICE on the Battlefield series Tweeted the following:

It is general knowledge in the Stockholm dev scene that Mirror’s Edge 2 is in production at DICE…

— Ben Cousins (@BenjaminCousins) Nov. 21

DICE wouldn’t comment on that since it’s a rumor, and these hidden shoes might have nothing to do with an announcement. They are probably just the result of a level designer with a desire to tease fans, but evidence is piling up to support a case for Mirror’s Edge 2.

Filed under: Games
04 Dec 21:45

Boss Damage by Brother Brain ★  The Legend of Zelda: A Link to...

Boss Damage by Brother Brain   
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (SNES) Nintendo 1991.

04 Dec 20:41

Yes you can remake TimeSplitters as a CryEngine mod, says Crytek

Will Crytek UK (formerly Free Radical) ever make TimeSplitters 4? It looks more and more unlikely.

That may be why Crytek has given the nod to a TimeSplitters CryEngine mod.

"I have just had word from Crytek that they are going to permit and support a TimeSplitters CryEngine mod," a post on the 100,000 Strong for TimeSplitters 4 Facebook page (via PCGamesN) announced.

Read more…

04 Dec 20:41

PC Far Cry 3 problems negated by setting Uplay to offline

Update 2: Shazzam! It's all fixed, according to Ubisoft.

"Dear #FarCry3PC players, thank you for your patience, our servers are back up & running," tweeted Ubisoft, careful not to confuse dear and deer. "Have fun playing!"

Update: Ubisoft is "very sorry" and working "as fast as possible" to sort things out, according to an official tweet.

Read more…

04 Dec 20:40

Designers: Come design Photoshop itself

by John Nack

Yo dawg, I heard you like using design tools to make design tools, so…”

Ever wish you could make Photoshop work exactly the way you want? Ever wish Adobe designers would walk a mile in your shoes? Ever wanted to stand up & champion the needs of the millions of creative people whose livelihoods depend on these tools?

I know I did; that’s exactly why I came to work here. And now there are two openings for designers to shape Photoshop & the next generation of imaging tools.

These are not easy gigs, but you’d be bored if they were, right? You have to want to learn (and learn, and learn) what a crazy-diverse range of customers needs, then combine your transformative vision with fortitude & exacting attention to detail. You don’t change an industry standard overnight, but keep sweating the details & you’ll be amazed at what’s possible.

Now then, the listings (the first applies specifically to Photoshop; the second to “bold new iOS multi-device applications”):

  • Senior User Experience Designer, Photoshop (18722): Adobe’s Photoshop team is looking for a motivated, creative, senior-level User Experience Designer who shares our passion for design and the urge to make better creative tools for real people. In this role you will be tasked with generating the design of new product features, interactions, and visuals, for Adobe Photoshop.
  • Senior User Experience Designer (18723): Adobe’s Experience Design team is looking for a motivated, creative, senior-level User Experience Designer who shares our passion for design and the urge to make forward-looking creative tools for real people. In this role you will be tasked with driving the design of new products as well as new features, interactions, and visuals for bold new iOS multi-device applications.

Click through on either for more details. The team looks forward to meeting you soon.

04 Dec 20:39

Chinese Takeaway: XCOM DLC Out Now

by Alec Meer


I should be over the moon about new content for one of my favourite games of 2012, but a) I wear specially-made grumpy pants at all times and b) the Slingshot add-on for XCOM really does sound underwhelming. It’s out later today, and currently I’m not particularly likely to play it. The biggest problem with it for me is less its nature – a few bonus missions, a pre-generated hard-ass squadmate and some new outfit options – and more that, reportedly, most of it can’t be accessed without starting a new campaign. I’ve played the game through two and half times now and what I want are new levels of challenge and new types of menace, not to repeat all those early stages once again to play three new maps, even if they are set in China.

See? Like I said, these pants are stitched from the finest grump hide.

04 Dec 20:38

Gay and Lesbian Dating Sim Finds Early Success on Kickstarter

by james_fudge

A new Kickstarter campaign aims to fund the development of a gay/lesbian dating simulation called Coming Out on Top. A demo version of the game is already available here if you want to get a feel for what this game is all about. The creators of the game were looking to raise $5,000 to fully develop the game for Windows, Mac, and Linux. As of this writing they have raised $7,845 and have added a stretch goal of $8,500.

read more

04 Dec 20:38

iTunes 11 review: Simple is as simple does

by Chris Foresman
iTunes 11 certainly looks better than past versions, especially on a Retina display. Chis Foresman

Apple promised that the eleventh major version of its media cataloging, syncing, and playback app would feature a "dramatically simplified new interface" and better integration with iCloud. So last Thursday, Apple finally released the highly anticipated update to iTunes after an initial one-month delay.

iTunes 11 isn't the ground-up rewrite some users may have expected. It's largely the same jumble of media storing, indexing, and playback for music and video, as well as ePub or PDF books and apps for your iOS devices. While some of the interface changes are indeed welcome, a few features that users relied heavily on have been left on the cutting room floor. More disconcerting, however, is that the release is marred by some confusing bugs despite that extra month Apple engineers spent polishing.

First, the good news

Apple definitely realized that iTunes had become a little unwieldy for many users. What started as a significant re-skinning of SoundJam MP—a popular MP3 jukebox app for Mac OS 8—has become the mother of all media apps. On top of importing, sorting, and playing back music, iTunes now handles TV shows, movies, and other video files. It organizes and syncs iOS apps for iPhones, iPads, and iPods. It also organizes and syncs (but does not allow users to read) e-books in iBooks, ePub, and PDF formats. It syncs iTunes purchases via iCloud and can access the iTunes store to buy music, apps, books, and more. Today, iTunes can also stream media over AirPlay to other Macs, Apple TVs, and AirPort Express base stations.

Read 36 remaining paragraphs | Comments

04 Dec 19:59

He Wears Rouge: Red Rogue Released

by Adam Smith

Hack, slash, splatter. Red Rogue first attracted my attention with its striking colour scheme, espied while playing a work-in-progress build entered into IGF 2012. Everything is teetering on the greyscale, except for blood and blood is as red as Rudolph’s nose. Bump into anything and the dungeon is spattered with that lovely redness, even if your victim is the tiniest of spiders, innocently dangling from the ceiling. Now complete and available for absolutely no money whatsoever, the game is a side-scrolling roguelike, packed with monsters and potentially lethal unidentified trinkets. There are two modes – a realtime ARPG type hack and slash, or a turn-based voyage downward for the those who like their roguelikes to be more like rogue. Jolly good.


04 Dec 19:40

Everyone seemed to enjoy the complete GBA set we posted last...

by ericisawesome

Everyone seemed to enjoy the complete GBA set we posted last week, so here are some more great photos of Japanese cartridges. Maniackers Design shot these for its Fammite Ittomo show over the summer. I’ll miss being able to dump out and show off collections like these, in our digital-only future.

Buy Famicom stuff
04 Dec 19:36

'Pid' Devs Quell The Masses With 'Easy Mode' Patch

by MTV Video Games

non-optional challenge in mainstream gaming is over
my proto-gamefaq father has won

By Jospeh Leray

Swedish design team Might & Delight, veterans of GRIN's Bionic Commando: Rearmed, announced today they will be patching an easy mode into Pid.

Pid is a whimsical, melancholy sci-fi puzzle-platformer, and Might & Delight's first game. It's about an young boy named Kurt who becomes stranded on a strange planet and must find his way home. It's got a killer art design and soundtrack, but reviewers found the game unnecessarily difficult. Joystiq called the game "frustrating," and Paste Magazine found the controls sluggish and the platforming sections "rote" and "tired."

In a prepared statement, Might & Delight says it used feedback from critics and fans to create the new mode, which features shorter boss fights, fewer enemies, and redesigned levels. The patch -- which is already available on PC and Mac and should hit consoles soon -- also balances aspects of the game's normal and hard modes.

The game's been out on Xbox Live Arcade, the PlayStation Network, and Steam for almost a month, but Might & Delight have also released a demo, "to better represent Pid and its unique style of play."

I liked the game better than most, it seems, but there's no denying it drags in a few places. The new mode and the demo should help make the game more accessible, and good thing, too: Pid is a delicate, clever, and well-crafted game, and it'd be a shame to scare people off with a reputation as being difficult or unfair.

Related posts:
'Injustice' Could Be NetherRealm's 'First Step' In A New Direction, According To Ed Boon
One-Eyed Assassin Deathstroke Joins The 'Injustice' Roster


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04 Dec 19:34

Trend alert: small internet publications

by Jason Kottke

For the longest time, the web was all like "blog blog blog blog" and we were like "fave fave fave like like like" but a bunch of recent publications and publishing systems seem to be breaking out of that mode. Craig Mod calls it Subcompact Publishing. Not sure I like the name, but I dig his gist. Here are a few examples I've seen:

Evening Edition: A daily roundup of the news brought to you by Mule Design.

29th Street Publishing: They're building a platform to make publishing Newsstand apps as easy as publishing a blog. Example pubs: The Awl's Weekend Companion and V as in Victor.

NextDraft: From Dave Pell, a culture-centric newsletter available via email and for iPad/iPhone.

Brief: "Technology news worth caring about", compiled daily by Richard Dunlop-Walters.

The Magazine: A bi-weekly iOS magazine for tech/internet lovers published by Marco Arment.

MATTER: An outlet for long-form journalism founded by Jim Giles and Bobbie Johnson.

Tapestry: A platform for making tappable iOS publications from Betaworks.

Tags: Craig Mod   weblogs
04 Dec 19:06

sufficiently-advanced reindeer

archive - contact - sexy exciting merchandise - cute - search - about
← previous December 4th, 2012 next

December 4th, 2012: Holiday shipping deadlines have been posted! The next one is this Thursday, December 6th, so if you want to give only the most awesomest of things this Christmas, you need to get ON that!

– Ryan

04 Dec 18:54

'Battle Dungeon' iOS game aborted after rampant piracy overwhelms developers

by Chris Welch
Battle Dungeon

Available on Apple's iOS App Store for less than a week, Battle Dungeon has abruptly been pulled by its developers after their servers were overloaded with users who illegally pirated the game. "The high load revealed technical issues which we don't feel we can fix to the level that our paying customers deserve," Hunted Cow Studios said in a statement. The studio has released a small number of iOS games to this point, but it wasn't until the debut of its first multiplayer-focused title that the magnitude of piracy across Apple's platform became apparent.

"Around 90 percent of our signups were coming from pirated copies."

In a message on Hunted Cow's forums, senior developer Wayne Robinson revealed that approximately 90 percent of...

Continue reading…

04 Dec 18:33

Sitting at my desk when everyone is at a trade show but me

04 Dec 18:32

When someone stole my almond milk from the fridge

04 Dec 18:29

Vega Older Than Thought: Mature Enough To Nurture Life

by Unknown Lamer


sciencehabit writes about new estimates of Vega's age giving hope that any planets it might have are old enough to harbor life. From the article: "Shining just 25 light-years from Earth in the constellation Lyra, Vega is the fifth brightest star in the night sky. In 1983, astronomers discovered dust orbiting the star, suggesting it had a solar system, and Carl Sagan chose to make Vega the source of a SETI signal in his 1985 novel Contact. At the time, Vega was thought to be only about a couple hundred million years old, probably too young for any planets to have spawned life. Since then, however, estimates of Vega's age have increased to between 625 million and 850 million years old. So suitable planets have probably had sufficient time to develop primitive life." With improvements in telescopes allowing detection of the rough atmospheric composition of exoplanets on the way, this could be pretty exciting.

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