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Apple is hiring hardware engineers to work on virtual reality products, 9to5Mac reports.

Job listings have appeared on the Apple website listing positions for Optical Display Engineers, Sr. Display Software Engineers, and other similar roles, which all point towards the development of display and projection systems. 

9to5Mac says the job posts almost certainly indicate that Apple is preparing to further delve into the sector. It would be an unsurprising move for the company, given the fact that people tout it as the next tech battleground. It's a subject of much fascination. So much so that The Verge published this nine-page essay/analysis of its future and impact.

Here's one of the Apple job adverts:

Screen Shot 2015 02 27 at 10.41.01Apple

It says that candidates must be "experienced in selecting and designing with a variety of display (monitor and projection) technologies." Apple wants people who understand "extremely high fidelity VR environments."

Last year Apple posted job listings to work on virtual reality experiences — the company needed engineers with knowledge of 3D graphics and augmented reality. At the time, 9to5Mac also reported that Apple had filed a US patent for a goggle system. The patent, for a head-mounted display, was for "providing a personal media viewing experience to a user." 

Apple virtual reality gaming headset patentPatentlyApple

If Apple is planning on releasing its own virtual reality headset then it would fall into direct competition with virtual reality gaming technology such as Oculus Rift, and even Microsoft's digital content headwear, Hololens. 

Original author: Joshua Barrie
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The rise of Uber is destroying the traditional taxi business, according to this compelling chart from data compiled by the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission. It tracks sale prices of taxi "medallions," the pricey licenses that give companies the right to operate a yellow cab:

Uber taxiDonut Shorts

The data was compiled by Donut Shorts, a Twitter account for investors. It comes from the NYCTLC.

The scariest part — for taxi companies — is the bottom part of the chart where the blue bars indicate sales coming from foreclosures.

Medallions used to confer on companies a type of monopoly or cartel — you could not operate a taxi in New York without one. Now, however, Uber lets anyone drive a taxi for the entry-level price of merely owning your own car. For many drivers there is simply no point in owning a medallion or working for a medallion company. And so the transaction value of those medallions has dropped off a cliff, even though the economy in New York has gone through the roof.

We haven't seen anything like this in the UK yet but there are early worrying signs for traditional cab fleets.

Addison Lee, which has a massive fleet of private hire drivers in London, recently cancelled its planned private equity sale. And then it announced there would be 90 job losses at the company.

Uber's arrival in London already caused protests from Hackney Cab drivers. When Uber launched in Birmingham, drivers there said they didn't care. "We are not particularly bothered about Uber coming to Birmingham," Mohammed Taj, a member of Birmingham's Black Cab Drivers' Association (BBCD), told the Mail.

The stats from New York suggest cab companies ought to start being bothered a bit more.

 

Original author: Jim Edwards
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Kobalt Music Group, the music publishing and record labels service, just announced $60 million (£40 million) in Series C funding led by Google Ventures, Google's investment arm. MSD Capital, the private firm of Dell founder Michael S. Dell and his family, and MSDC Management are also behind the financing. 

It's Google Venture's first European investment, the Financial Times notes. 

Kobalt put out a press release on Friday announcing the deal, which says the money will be used to support the company's "technology innovations to provide artists and songwriters with the most transparent, efficient, and accurate royalty." The round takes Kobalt's total funding to $126 million since it was founded in 2000. 

Kobalt provides musicians and songwriters with royalties when music is streamed over websites such as Spotify. Industry figures who use the company include Beck, Foo Fighters, Maroon 5, and Paul McCartney. Kobalt offers services including creative output, brand partnerships, licensing, rights, distribution, and royalty statements. It's massive. The company has been central to the issue of artist royalties — remember Taylor Swift pulling out of Spotify last year — and online piracy.

It's likely the investment will mean it will soon become easier for the music industry to work with Google services such as YouTube (which launched its own music service, YouTube Music Key, last year) to measure plays and collect royalties.

In recent years, the music industry has struggled with the changing online landscape. Kobalt founder and CEO Willard Ahdritz commented on the situation, telling the Guardian“Our investors are backing what I’ve always said from day one: we need trust between technology and music, because these are the technology people who are going to sell our products." It's all about trust and transparency, it seems. 

The move also points towards the idea that Google is cosying up to the music industry amid claims it does too little to help prevent online piracy. Many in the industry are upset with Google because of complications over search engine rankings of piracy sites.

Above all, the Google Ventures investment marks a size able push into the sector. The likes of Apple (which has big plans on the music streaming front, following its acquisition of Beats and the hire of Radio 1 DJ Zane Lowe), Spotify, and WiMP/Tidal (which US rapper Jay-Z is buying) will no doubt be watching on to see what happens next. 

Ahdritz sums it up nicely in the press release today: “The music industry is going through dynamic changes all around the world," he says. "The migration to a global, digital business model in the music industry is accelerating." 

Original author: Joshua Barrie
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Original author: James Cook
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Internet.org TV adsVimeo/FacebookOne of the ads tells Neesha's story, a girl who has grown up with a family of magicians, but no internet.

 

Facebook has launched its first TV ads to promote its non-profit Internet.org initiative, which aims to offer affordable or free internet access within developing countries that are currently not online.

The Internet.org ad campaign, which also extends to outdoor and Facebook ads, launched in Australia and Canada this week, according to AdNews.

The ads aim to show how the internet would have helped people in developing countries who have already achieved amazing feats despite not being connected.

A Facebook spokesperson to AdNews: "The regional campaign shows that the more we connect, the better the world becomes."

Two spots are currently airing on TV, with two additional ads set to roll out in the coming weeks.

They were created by Facebook's in-house creative agency, The Factory.

A Facebook spokeswoman told Business Insider there are no plans currently to extend this campaign beyond Canada and Australia.

Here's one of the TV ads, about two 11-year-old engineers who built a robot arm.

Erika & Esmeralda from Facebook on Vimeo.

This ad tells the story of Mehtar and Mostek who created a windmill, without the help of the internet.

Mehtar & Mostek from Facebook on Vimeo.

This spot focuses on Neesha, who has grown up with a family of magicians, but has no internet to share their amazing tricks.

Neesha from Facebook on Vimeo.

And, finally, this ad shows Lian, a record-store owner who sells hundreds of hard-to-find vinyl — but has no internet to share his wares.

Lian from Facebook on Vimeo.

Facebook has been on somewhat of an advertising surge in recent weeks. Earlier this month Facebook launched its first ever UK TV ads.

Original author: Lara O'Reilly
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The entire internet lost its cool on Thursday night when a Tumblr user posted a picture of a dress along with the caption"guys please help me - is this dress white and gold, or blue and black? Me and my friends can’t agree and we are freaking the f**k out."

Here's what that dress looked like, in case you haven't seen it yet.

dressTumblr/Swiked

It turns out that the rest of the internet couldn't decide on which two colors the dress was, either.

While Twitter users hemmed and hawed over the dress's actual color, the real chaos ensued on Tumblr, the platform where the post originated.

Here are just some of the best responses we've seen from Tumblr users.

 

Patriotic humor!

the dress tumblrScreenshot/Tumblr

This girl asked her mom for a second opinion on the dress's colors, and now she's freaking out.

the dress tumblrScreenshot/Tumblr

Of course, a hybrid llama chase-dress meme was inevitable.
 the dress tumblrScreenshot/Tumblr

Autocorrect jokes abound.

the dress tumblrScreenshot/Tumblr

Users were shocked by how quickly the dress proliferated the rest of social media after blowing up on Tumblr.

tumblr dressScreenshot/Tumblr

Apparently 50 Shades of Grey jokes aren't old yet.

the dress tumblrScreenshot/Tumblr

 

Some people on Tumblr just want the debate to end already.the dress tumblrScreenshot/Tumblr

But this is really the bottom line for this user, and others: the dress tumblrScreenshot/Tumblr

Original author: Maya Kosoff
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dress black blueBusiness InsiderSarah Weichel (above) and Caitlin Mcneill (below)

Two women are behind the viral dress that has everyone confused. Here's what they told us.

The picture was initially posted on Tumblr by a 21-year-old singer named Caitlin McNeill who lives on the tiny Scottish island of Colonsay.

In a telephone conversation with Business Insider on Thursday evening, McNeill explained that the picture was a dress was worn to her friends' wedding. In the photo, some people see the dress as white and gold while others see it as blue and black

The dress was worn by the bride's mother. McNeill and her friends first realized there was something different about the dress when the mother sent her daughter the now-famous photo.

"What happened was two of my close friends were actually getting married and the mother of the bride took a photo of the dress to send to her daughter," McNeill explained. "When my friend showed the dress to her fiancee, they disagreed on the color."

The bride then posted the picture on Facebook and her friends continued to debate the color of the dress. 

"All of our friends disagreed," McNeill said.

After seeing the Facebook thread, McNeill decided to share the picture on a fan page she has on Tumblr dedicated to a woman named Sarah Weichel. That's where the dress went viral.

Weichel is a talent manager who represents several YouTubers including Hannah Hart.

Weichel told Business Insider her phone began blowing up on Thursday after McNeill's post started going viral. 

"The crazy thing is, I actually have nothing to do with the post. It's literally just a fan account of me, so my name and my photos are all over the account," Weichel said. "I actually don't have anything to do with it. ... But I have been getting a ton of phone calls and emails tonight."

The situation was even weirder for Weichel because her client, Hart, was just announced as the star of a new television series on Thursday.

"Between that announcement and the dress thing my phone has been going crazy with congratulations and 'What the hell is happening?'" Weichel said.

For Weichel, there's no question about what color the dress is. 

"Black and blue of course!" she said. 

Weichel put Business Insider in touch with McNeill who said one of the oddest parts of the experience has been watching celebrities share her picture.

"I thought my followers on Tumblr would maybe have a good reaction, but I never would have considered that Taylor Swift and Mindy Kaling would be tweeting about it," McNeill said.

Out of all the celebrities who became interested in her post, McNeill would like to meet Swift.

"Oh my god," she said when we asked about Swift. "That would be something."

McNeill plays guitar and sings in a band named Canach that plays what she described as "traditional Scottish folky music." Her band played at the wedding. She actually saw the dress and told us definitively what color it really is.

"I got to the wedding and the mother was wearing the dress," McNeill said. "Obviously it was blue and black." 

Original author: Hunter Walker
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White Gold Blue Black DressTumblrWhat color is this dress?This dress that might be white and gold or black and blue is currently going massively viral thanks to a Tumblr post that asked readers to identify what color it is.

Different people apparently perceive the dress differently

I see the dress as white and gold. However, Google has told me I was wrong. 

When I plugged the picture of the dress into Google images, the "visually similar images" identified by the search engine were all dresses that were very clearly in various shades of blue. According to Google, the company's image search engine uses "computer vision technology" to create a "mathematical model" of the picture's most distinctive properties.

That Google image search software clearly says the dress is black and blue.

See the result for yourself: 

google image dress white and gold black and blueGoogle A Google image search for the mysterious multicolored dress.

Original author: Hunter Walker
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There is a dress that might be black and blue or white and gold. 

It started on this Tumblr page here, where a user posted this dress with the caption, "guys please help me - is this dress white and gold, or blue and black? Me and my friends can’t agree and we are freaking the f**k out"

Here's the dress.

dressTumblr/Swiked

And people on Twitter are completely freaking out whether this dress is blue and black or white and gold. (Note: some of the embedded tweets contain NSFW language.)

folks i do colors for a living and that dress is blue and black. the yellowish lighting is making the black part look sorta gold.

The dress is white and gold an I feel physically ill.

CORRECT RT @notsalome: The dress is medium blue with black lace, get your eyes checked.

Is the dress prettier when you see it as white and gold? I don't understand what's happening

Taylor Swift sees black and blue. 

I don't understand this odd dress debate and I feel like it's a trick somehow. I'm confused and scared.PS it's OBVIOUSLY BLUE AND BLACK

Mindy Kaling has also chimed in.

IT'S A BLUE AND BLACK DRESS! ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME

And BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith.

My daughter thinks it's blue and green and we are headed to the ER

 And New York Times tech reporter Mike Isaac.

holy god the dress just changed colors on me

And of course, Denny's.

*stops furiously scribbling amidst dozens of coffee cups*there is no dress. it is not the dress that changes colors, it is only yourself.

Naturally, the debate surrounding the dress includes the Illuminati.

THE ILLUMINATI CONDUCTED THIS WHOLE DRESS SITUATION TO REPLACE OBAMA WITH A LIZARD WITHOUT BEING NOTICED #whiteandgold

And the llamas that were loose in Arizona earlier today.  

I wish I had the skillz to photoshop that dress onto a llama.

And amid all this, there might be an explanation here. 

Here's what the text in that embedded tweet says:

"Your eyes have retinas, the things that let you interpret color. There's rods, round things, and cones that stick out, which is what gives your eye a textured appearance in the colored part. The "cones" see color. The "rods" see shade, like black, white and grey. Cones only work when enough light passes through. So while I see the fabric as white, someone else may see it as blue because my cones aren't responding to the dim lighting. My rods see it as a shade (white).

There's three cones: small, medium and large. They are blue sensitive, green sensitive, and red sensitive.

As for the black bit (which I see as gold), it's called additive mixing. Blue, green and red are the main colors for additive mixing. This is where it gets really tricky. Subtractive mixing, such as with paint, means the more colors you add the murkier it gets until its black. ADDITIVE mixing, when you add the three colors the eyes see best, red, green and blue, (not to be confused with primary colors red, blue and yellow) it makes pure white.

—Blue and Black: In conclusion, your retina's cones are more high functioning, and this results in your eyes doing subtractive mixing.

—White and Gold: our eyes don't work well in dim light so our retinas rods see white, and this makes them less light sensitive, causing additive mixing, (that of green and red), to make gold."

And this user says he turned his phone's brightness from low to high and saw the colors switching. 

So give that a shot, maybe.

Original author: Myles Udland
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We're learning more about Ellen Pao's working environment at Kleiner Perkins, thanks to trial testimony from managing partner Ted Schlein.

Pao, a former junior partner at Kleiner, is seeking $16 million in damages from the firm for gender discrimination.

Schlein recalled a private jet trip to New York with Pao and Dan Rosensweig, the CEO of Chegg, a company Kleiner had invested in.

Rosensweig allegedly kept the conversation around Playboy, Victoria's Secret, and other "very offensive sexual topics," according to Pao's trial brief.

"Dan said he met with Christie Hefner at the Playboy mansion," testified Schlein. "Dan is a boisterous type."

Schlein didn't do much to rein in Rosensweig. 

"I don't remember trying to stop it," he said.

Pao's attorney, Alan Exelrod, mentioned the incident to paint a picture of the environment she worked in at Kleiner. 

Original author: Sam Colt
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runcibleMonohm

A company in Berkeley, California, has designed a perfectly round smartphone that looks like a pocket watch, and will debut it next week at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona.

The Runcible will debut in Japan later this year, and will feature a camera and all the wireless connections you'd expect: LTE, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth.

It will also run the Firefox OS, the mobile platform from browser maker Mozilla. That means it won't run the hundreds of thousands of native apps available for Android and iOS, but will run only apps written in the HTML5 language, which is used for web apps. 

The lack of apps may be a turn off for some users, but this isn't a device for always-connected tech enthusiasts anyway. 

Monohm designs "heirloom electronics," and it's advertising the Runcible as a more tasteful kind of smartphone for people who don't always want to be plugged in.

As the company's web site says, it's meant to resemble "the pocket watch, the compact, the compass, the magical stone in your hand," and it "will never beep, alert, or otherwise interrupt you." 

Think of it like the fixie bike or craft artisan beer of smartphones. 

The company told CNET that photography will be a major focus for the phone, and it will use some custom HTML5 apps that are redesigned for the round screen. But most important, it's meant for people to keep for a long time, like a keepsake, rather than replaced every two or three years like most smartphones.

We'll be on hand at Mobile World Congress next week and we'll see if we can get a demo.

 

Original author: Matt Rosoff
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bii food bev cagrBI Intelligence

At $600 billion a year in sales, food and beverage is by far the largest retail category in the U.S. by a wide margin. However, it's also the category that has been the least disrupted by e-commerce; less than 1% of food and beverage sales currently occur online, according to BI Intelligence's estimates.

But shopping habits are changing, and niche online grocery services that compete on convenience and selection are gaining traction. Meanwhile tech giants like Amazon are fronting the cost of expensive delivery infrastructure that has so far held back grocery e-commerce. 

In a new in-depth report, BI Intelligence looks at why the grocery business has proved so challenging to e-commerce companies — from consumer reluctance to complicated and expensive logistics — and what new strategies e-commerce startups and big-name tech companies are pursuing to push more grocery sales online. Between 2013 and 2018, online grocery sales will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.1%, reaching nearly $18 billion by the end of the forecast period. For comparison, offline grocery sales will rise by 3.1% annually during the same period. 

Access The Full Report And Downloadable Charts By Signing Up For A Free Trial>>

Here are some of the key findings explored in the report: 

There are a number of disadvantages to buying groceries online on both the consumer and business side, such as the cost and complexity of logistics, shipping fees, and the quality and freshness of orders. For online grocers to deliver the freshness consumers want, they have to be able to deliver orders fast while maintaining the quality of easily damaged foods like produce. But there are still some advantages to online grocery shopping, in particular convenience and a large selection of products. Only 15% of U.S. adults have purchased general food items online, but 25% said they have bought specialty food and beverages online, which are hard to find elsewhere. New startups that focus on concierge shopping and subscription prepared meals are innovating on the online grocery model and offering services that really are differentiated from traditional supermarket shopping. We believe these services could change the way people shop for food. In addition, established online grocers have an opportunity in enterprise grocery sales, which lowers costs through bulk purchases. Some of the biggest names in tech — Amazon, eBay, and Google — are beginning to offer and promote same-day delivery services. As consumers get used to the convenience of ordering something online and receiving it the same day, grocery e-commerce may benefit too, with people more likely to buy food they know they will get quickly. While same-day delivery comes with a big price tag, 25% of millennials said they would pay a premium for same-day delivery.

To access the E-Commerce Grocery Report and BI Intelligence's ongoing coverage of the future of retail, mobile, and e-commerce — including downloadable charts, data, and analysis — sign up for a free trial. 

bii same day shipping demoBI Intelligence

Original author: Cooper Smith
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symantec cyberwar gamesMelia Robinson/Business InsiderTeam Breaking Bad.

For most of the year, employees of leading cyber-security firm Symantec work toward securing and managing their customers' information.

This week, they took a break from that. They got to be the bad guys.

Four years ago, Symantec launched its annual CyberWar Games, an internal event that challenges employees to walk in the shoes of an attacker. The Games simulates an information security breach modeled after a high profile incident reported in the media, and employees experience the attack from start to finish as the malicious party.

This year, more than 1,500 Symantec employees registered. On Wednesday, February 25, the best teams of four from around the world received all-expenses-paid trips to Symantec's world headquarters in Mountain View, California, to compete in the final objective.

The scenario: A hospital is conducting a clinical trial of a new drug. The attacker does not want that drug to go to market. In order to thwart the drug's success, the attacker must sabotage data being collected from patients in the trial so the FDA will not approve it.

The grand prize for hacking into the hospital's databases and creating a diversionary campaign to throw off suspicion? Company bragging rights.

symantec cyberwar gamesMelia Robinson/Business InsiderA fake hospital room is set up behind Symantec employees.

Symantec's odd training approach isn't unique. Many businesses and government-related organizations enlist ethical hackers, or experts who systematically penetrate a computer system or network on behalf of its owners in order to discover its vulnerabilities.

Michael Garvin, a senior manager of product management at Symantec, who organizes the event, says "it's about developing that muscle memory" for when an attacker strikes.

Employees learn how an attacker can exploit networks, applications, products, and solutions, and why they might be motivated to do so. In this year's simulation, maybe the attacker was a disgruntled employee of the pharmaceutical company conducting the clinical trial, or an employee of a rival company that would prefer its version of the drug go to market first.

symantec cyberwar gamesMelia Robinson/Business InsiderAntonio Forzieri (right) is on team Three Monkeys.This role-reversal changes the way employees think about emerging threats and cyber-criminal tactics.

"Most of the time, you don't use these skills," said contestant Antonio Forzieri, from Italy. He works in Symantec's Cyber Security Practice department, covering clients in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. Forzieri won the Games last year and placed second two years ago. He appreciates the chance to think like an offender and cultivate his "information security IQ."

When asked what the most difficult part of the Games is this year, he answered: "Everything."

Original author: Melia Robinson
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Star CitizenStar CitizenLaunching a video game has become a challenge akin to launching a major feature film. Tons of money is invested up front, a release date is set, and gamers play.

One ambitious videogame CEO, however, is taking a risk and turning this process on its head.

Cloud Imperium Games’ Chris Roberts is relying on crowdfuning to finance "Star Citizen." Furthermore, players can pay for the game now, but but can't play the entire thing just yet.

Already, as of Friday, the company had raised close to $73 million to support more than 200 employees working internationally to produce Star Citizen from a base of about 758,000 players.

Crowdfunding is unorthodox, but it gives rare insight into the audience

Big, publicly-traded video game companies spend tens of millions of dollars marketing and testing out concepts, simultaneously trying to please investors and analysts with increasing R&D that is only outpaced by share price gains. Throw in many investors’ imperative to sell stock, and the factors going against even the best-capitalized gaming startups are enough to weigh down even the best rocketships.

Roberts isn't just bucking the trends that have governed the video game industry's aging console-dependent business model — his company is also an example of how the crowdfunding business has the potential to disrupt the venture capital business model.

He launched Cloud Imperium Games’ Star Citizen via Kickstarter, and although he took in more than $2 million via Kickstarter in 2012, the overwhelming majority of Star Citizen’s funding has come independently. Star Citizen is closing in on the $75 million fundraising mark.

However, none of the 758,000 gamers that so eagerly signed up for its launch seem bothered a finished product won’t be on the market until 2016. It certainly doesn’t bother Roberts.

“I know we have an audience before we release the game,” he said. This something his corporate competitors rarely know, for certain, before committing millions in product development dollars for a new launch, or a sequel.star citizenYouTube

The game won't be launched in one piece

Roberts’ has an unusual launch plan: he began taking donations in 2012, but will not launch an entire product until 2016. Instead of launching the game at once, Roberts and his team at Cloud Imperium Games will roll out segments of Star Citizen, one by one. 

Right now, users can fly around in space and dogfight with other starships.

Star Citizen will introduce first-person combat in a matter of weeks. And later in 2015, a social element will emerge, where players can leave their interstellar garages and wander the landscapes of the planets on which they’re based.

The most mind-blowing parts of the game won’t come out for another year or so, though. 

Then, players will be able to use “multi-crew” ships, just like Han Solo or Captain Kirk (don’t expect either IP-protected character to appear in Star Citizen, though) and individual players can have roles within a bigger ship — like pilot, or turret gunner. 

“That’s a thing I wanted to do forever; that was one of by biggest drivers for Star Citizen,” Roberts said. "It’s a dream of a lot of people.”Star Citizen Cockpithttps://cloudimperiumgames.com/

The biggest crowdfunding campaign ever won’t produce anything until 2016

Beyond that, Roberts is ready to take on the galaxy. In 2016, players will be able to cruise through entire star systems and take ships on interplanetary voyages. This isn’t your 1990s flight-sim game, to be certain. Eventually, Star Citizen will be adapted for virtual reality headsets, which will mark a substantive enhancement for some of Roberts’ original gamers (the author, included) that enjoyed PC-based Wing Commander — another creation of Roberts’ — more than a decade ago. 

“Having a virtual reality headset adds to that,” but “we’ve still got work to go.” 

There are still bugs being ironed out, like making VR-views sync up to fast head pivots by the user.

Not much different from the upgrade charges billed to the most dedicated gamers by King Digital and Zynga, Star Citizen allows users to customize their ships and load up on guns and weaponry for interstellar battle. Users can also win credits. Hornet JPGhttps://cloudimperiumgames.com/

The overwhelming majority of Roberts’ and Star Citizen’s backers didn’t make a big cash pledge. He indicated this was like an equity-based approach to video games. 

“Most of the people we have, it is like they pre-bought the game,” he said. "Crowdfunding works best when people donate to something they want to see happen.”

Original author: Jonathan Marino
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Larry PageGetty / Justin Sullivan

 

Google just paid $25 million for exclusive rights to the ".app" top-level web domain.

Google decided to apply for new top-level domains (TLDs) way back in 2012, four years after ICANN, the organization that controls the world's domain names, decided to expand the overall number of generic TLDs. 

Google applied for dozens at the time, including .docs, .android, .free, .fyi, .foo, and, of course, .app.

ICANN has been gradually auctioning off the different domains since June 2014, in what can be a competitive and expensive process (Dot Tech LLC spent $6.7 million on the ".tech" domain last year, reportedly beating out Google, which also bid). 

Amazon bought ".buy" for nearly $5 million and ".spot" for $2.2 million in fall 2014. 

Comparatively, Google's $25 million investment in ".app" looks pretty steep; it's the most any company has paid in one of ICANN's auctions so far 

Google currently lets people register for ".how," ".soy," and ".minna" domains one its own ICANN-accredited domain registry. It also plans to be the registry for the top-level domains ".dad," ".here," ".eat," and ".new," among others, and, presumably, ".app" soon. You can't actually purchase domains like "cooking.how" via Google's registry (you get directed to partner sites), but the company also has its own domain registration service, which is still in beta.  

"We've been excited and curious about the potential for new TLDs for .soy long. We are very .app-y with .how, at a .minna-mum, they have the potential to .foo-ward internet innovation," a Google spokesperson told Business Insider via email. 

Although Google hasn't announced specific plans for .app, the purchase could give the company a creative way to promote apps as more search shifts to mobile. 

The company is taking other steps to help developers promote apps: Earlier today, the company announced that it's going to start testing out search ads in the Google Play Store.

 

Original author: Jillian D'Onfro
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Original author: Jillian D'Onfro
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TSchleinLowResKleiner Perkins

A witness for the venture capital firm Ellen Pao is suing for gender discrimination says they promoted Pao to an investing role even though they didn't think she would be any good at it.

"I didn't think being a venture capitalist was the right role for Ellen," testified Kleiner managing partner Ted Schlein on Thursday. "I thought she would be a great operator."

But when Google Ventures approached Pao about a job  possibly to become a partner there  Kleiner responded by making her a junior partner in its digital growth fund.

"There was a discussion about how to respond to Google Ventures' request to talk to Ellen," said Schlein. "We offered her a position in the digital group at that point in time."

Schlein said he was "quite hesitant" about promoting Pao and said told John Doerr, whom Pao had been serving as chief of staff.

Kleiner's lawyers have stressed that Pao wasn't promoted from junior partner to a general partner role because she was better suited as an operator than an investor.

Currently Pao is serving as Reddit's interim CEO. She's seeking $16 million in damages from Kleiner Perkins.

Original author: Sam Colt
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GalaxyNote4IncipioIncipioWe take our phones everywhere, which is why it's important to get a comfortable, sturdy case.

The good news is that there are plenty to choose from — but that can also be a disadvantage. With so many choices, it can be hard to find the right case that fits your personal style and needs.

We've rounded up some of our favorite Android phone cases on the market, and whether you have a Galaxy S5, Note 4, or HTC One, we're sure you'll find something that suits you on this list. 

Original author: Lisa Eadicicco
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