Here's the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie trailer

On Tuesday evening, Disney released the latest trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Read the rest

This is the trailer you're looking for. (Star Wars: The Force Awakens)

"It’s true. All of it. The Dark Side. The Jedi. They’re real."

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Largest martial arts display record set by Chinese city where 50,000 did Tai Chi

A Chinese national flag flies as students practice Tai Chi on a high school playground during a Guinness World Record attempt of the largest martial arts display ever. Read the rest

Donald Trump sex doll

“You can do whatever you want to him / He's a Donald Trump Sex Doll.” Read the rest

White supremacists call for Star Wars boycott because imaginary brown people

As Popehat tweeted: "The #BoycottStarWarsVII tag -- you will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy, plus people making fun of them." Read the rest

In upsidedownland, Verizon upheld its fiber broadband promises to 14 cities

Verizon got broadband franchise agreements in cities across the USA in exchange for promises to get fiber into residential homes and businesses, arguing that without the exclusive right to wire up cities without competition, it would be unable to justify the investment in new infrastructure. Read the rest

Survivor-count for the Chicago PD's black-site/torture camp climbs to 7,000+

In February, the Guardian reported stories about the Homan Square, the Chicago Police Department's off-the-books black-site, where (mostly black and brown) suspects are denied counsel while being brutalized into forced confessions. Read the rest

John Oliver on the Canadian election: NAILED IT!

Just in time for election day, the best show on late-night TV reports on the decade-long reign of error from Stephen Harper's Conservative Party, and finishes on a note of surreal triumph. Read the rest

NYC rats walking upright, holding rodent Burning Man

Pizza Rat was just the most brazen example of the rats that are apparently ravaging New York City this year. Apparently it's a record year for the number of rodent complaint calls that citizens have made to the city of New York.

Manhattan Upper West Side resident Nora Prentice says this about an infestation of hundreds of rats in her neighborhood park:

"It's like the Burning Man of rats," she told the Associated Press. "They're just sitting there in a lawn chair waiting for you."

Meanwhile city comptroller Scott Stringer has noticed that rodent evolution has apparently gone awry: "I've seen rats walking upright, saying, 'Good morning, Mr. Comptroller,'" he said. "It's unsightly to see rats running through neighborhoods like they actually bought a co-op somewhere."

I suggest that the city issue every brave soul a copy of Ike Matthews' 1898 classic book "Full Revelations of a Professional Rat-Catcher After 25 Years' Experience." Read the rest

Human Resource Machine will teach you to program and it will be adorable

It's easy to feel like an automaton in the world of modern office labor. The game Human Resource Machine takes that one step further, by imagining an office building that functions like an actual computer. You're an office worker who has just started working in this tower of commerce, and in order to do your job, you'll have to learn how to program it.

If that sounds intimidating, it's not. Every day, your tiny, adorable employee will be asked to move various objects from an inbox to an outbox using simple commands. Over time the tasks grow more complicated—maybe you'll be asked to only move some of the boxes, or to combine them in certain ways, and you'll have to figure out how to accomplish that with the limited tools at your disposal. To make things easier, you'll be given spaces on the floor where you can store boxes (aka memory) and more commands that will allow you to manipulate the boxes in different way. Yes, it gets a little brain-melting towards the end, but take it from someone who is totally clueless about programming: actually watching your little office drone walk back and forth through every step makes it much easier to understand, even when you haven't quite figured out the solution.

Human Resource Machine is the latest game from the Tomorrow Corporation, and has the same visual look (and bug-eyed protagonists) as its last release, the anti-corporate pyromania simulator Little Inferno. The same looming dystopian air permeates both, as the programming levels are occasionally interrupted by interludes that hint at a darker world outside your building, like ominous news reports about robots massing outside the city for reasons unknown. Read the rest

Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal" on bamboo flute and koto

Yoshimi Tsujimoto and company burn through Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal" on shakuhachi (bamboo flute) and koto. Sure beats Alien Ant Farm's attempt.

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FBI investigating ‘teen stoner hack’ of CIA Director John Brennan

A pair of self-described teen stoner hackers say they breached an AOL account used by CIA Director John Brennan, the New York Post reported today. Read the rest

Next time a government hacks your Facebook account, Facebook will let you know

Facebook says that starting today, they will notify users “if we believe your account has been targeted or compromised by an attacker suspected of working on behalf of a nation-state.” Read the rest

How games are keeping traditional symphony orchestras in business

Read about the surprising role games are playing in sustaining symphony orchestras, one woman's struggle in a toxic industry, and how a player discovered their sexuality in Borderlands.

Can diverse character art invite you into a game genre you normally avoid?

Strategy games can be forbidding, but these striking character designs send a considered message of welcome.

My favorite car phone mount so far is the $(removed) Spigen Magnetic Air Vent Mount

We recently got a new car, and I opted not to get the built-in car navigation. It's never as good as Waze, Google maps, or iPhones. It's a waste of money. My wife is the primary driver of the car and she hasn't been happy with any of the phone mounts she tried. So on the weekend I got the Spigen Air Vent Magnetic Car Mount Holder for $(removed) on Amazon and I think it is going to do the trick. I like it so much I bought another one for our other car. The mount attaches to the car's air vent and has a strong neodymium magnet in it. The kit comes with two very thin metal plates (0.013 inches thick according to my digital caliper) with adhesive so you can stick them on the back of your phone or the case. The phone feels secure when you put in on the mount. I like this much more than the springy pinchers my other phone mounts use. At $(removed), this was a great deal. Read the rest

Star Wars Rebels Season 2 is off to a strong start

There was some serious excitement in our home this weekend, as my daughter and I prepared to watch Star Wars Rebels: The Siege of Lothal, and then the Season Two opener.

Star Wars: Rebels may be my very favorite storyline in the Star Wars universe, and Season 2 starts off with a bang! Rebels rejoins the dissatisfied crew of the Ghost several years after the fall of the Republic, as their struggle against the Empire continues! This is a dark time for the galaxy and a worse one for the Rebels, as they've caught the attention of Darth Vader.

This is no later-in-life, maybe considering the path he's taken, willing to hear Luke's pleading Darth Vader. This is Vader at the very prime of his evil! A Vader who orders mass murder like it is just another Tuesday. The Vader we knew existed but barely got to see. Darth Vader.

This is my favorite cast of Star Wars characters. The writers are doing an amazing job at growing them, and bringing back some folks we really wanted to see. I haven't been this excited about a TV series in a while. C1-10P, Zeb, Hera, Sabine and Kanan Jarrus are wonderful! Ezra is your stock Star Wars whiny teen dude about to become a Jedi, but they seem to be trying to develop him.

Siege of Lothal is a wonderful 44 minute mini-movie that sets the new season up beautifully. Season 2 is now airing Wednesdays on Disney XD, but as I watch everything via the internets I'm streaming from Amazon. Read the rest

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