Technology & Digital Life

Around the Nation
12:36 pm
Mon January 14, 2013

The Great American Signature Fades Away

John Hancock's famously large signature is part of our visual heritage, but handwritten signatures are used less and less.
www.archives.gov

Originally published on Mon January 14, 2013 3:04 pm

Much has been made recently of the loopy signature of Jack Lew, the Treasury secretary nominee whose name — if he is confirmed — will appear on new U.S. currency.

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Remembrances
4:46 am
Mon January 14, 2013

Internet Activist Aaron Swartz Dies At 26

Originally published on Mon January 14, 2013 3:27 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep. Let's talk now about the life and death of Aaron Swartz. He was a 26-year-old computer protégé and social activist. He created new technologies. He led campaigns that touched millions of lives and last Friday, Mr. Swartz hanged himself in his Brooklyn apartment. He was facing a criminal investigation at the time. NPR's Steve Henn is covering this story. Good morning, Steve.

STEVE HENN, BYLINE: Good morning.

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The Two-Way
5:44 pm
Sat January 12, 2013

Aaron Swartz, Reddit Cofounder And Online Activist, Dead At 26

Aaron Swartz co-authored RSS and founded the company that later became the social media website Reddit.
Boston Globe via Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 14, 2013 8:54 am

He was 14 when he co-authored RSS and later helped found the company that would become the social media website Reddit. Internet activist Aaron Swartz was found dead in his Brooklyn apartment, authorities said Saturday. He was 26.

Update at 7:42 p.m.: Swartz To Be Remembered For 'Technological Virtuosity':

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Digital Life
4:56 pm
Sat January 12, 2013

'Make Me' Asian App Sparks Online Backlash

A screenshot from the "Make me Asian" app page in the Google Play store.
Google Play

Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 10:04 am

Tens of thousands of people have downloaded two apps from the Google Play Store that are sparking accusations of racism.

The "Make me Asian" and "Make me Indian" apps allow Android smartphone users to take a picture and superimpose characteristics the developer thinks relate to those ethnic groups. An online petition is urging Google to remove the apps from its store.

The Make me Asian app manipulates pictures to give the subject yellow-tinged skin, narrow eyes, a conical rice-paddy hat and a Fu Manchu mustache taken from a fictional Chinese villain.

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Digital Life
6:42 am
Sat January 12, 2013

Electronics Show Highlights Startups Over Industry Giants

Originally published on Sat January 12, 2013 12:08 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The Consumer Electronics Show took place this past week in Las Vegas. More than 156,000 salespeople, electronics buyers, electronics enthusiasts and a number of reporters descended on the city to gawk at acres and acres at the latest shiny gadgets. NPR's Steve Henn was there to gawk, too. Thanks for joining us, Steve.

STEVE HENN, BYLINE: Oh, my pleasure.

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Technology
4:48 pm
Fri January 11, 2013

Quiet Hybrid Cars Pose A Danger To The Blind — So What Should They Sound Like?

Originally published on Fri January 11, 2013 6:11 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Transportation finally got serious about something on hybrid cars that we highlighted six years ago on this program. My co-host Robert Siegel was the guide.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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The Two-Way
3:28 pm
Fri January 11, 2013

Computer Users Should Disable Java 7 Owing To Security Flaw, Experts Say

Originally published on Fri January 11, 2013 5:43 pm

Millions of computer users who run the most recent versions of Oracle's Java software should disable the product owing to security flaws, says the cybersecurity section of the Department of Homeland Security. The agency says, "Web browsers using the Java 7 plug-in are at high risk."

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NPR Story
12:01 pm
Fri January 11, 2013

How E-Waste Is Becoming a Big, Global Problem

Originally published on Fri January 11, 2013 1:03 pm

According to the EPA, more than 2.5 million tons of electronic waste, or e-waste, is produced each year in the U.S. Derek Markham, a contributing writer for Treehugger.com, discusses the global impacts, and why you should think twice before discarding your old cell phone.

Technology
5:55 am
Fri January 11, 2013

CES Vendors Want To Hook Up Your Home

Originally published on Fri January 11, 2013 8:35 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

That big consumer electronics show in Las Vegas ends today. And while big tech firms like Google and Apple did not attend, an increasingly diverse range of companies took their place. With more and more devices connecting to the Internet, many companies are flocking to this festival of gadgets, hoping to bring all the appliances in your home online. NPR's Steve Henn reports.

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Planet Money
3:46 am
Fri January 11, 2013

Black Market Pharmacies And The Big Business Of Spam

Acne medicine, in Turkish.
Dave Keck

Originally published on Fri January 11, 2013 8:35 am

An apparent feud between two black market pharmacies has shed light on a shady global industry.

"Rx-Promotion and SpamIt probably are responsible for upward of 50 or 60 percent of spam that you and I got in our inboxes over the last five years," said Brian Krebs, a cyber-security reporter who chronicled the alleged feud on his website. "It's just a ridiculous amount of problems that these two guys cause for everybody."

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