Technology & Digital Life

All Tech Considered
4:27 pm
Thu April 30, 2015

The Doctor Will Video Chat With You Now: Insurer Covers Virtual Visits

UnitedHealthcare says it will cover doctors' visits by live video on smartphones, tablets and computers.
Doctor On Demand

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 8:19 pm

If you can live stream movies, why not live stream medical care?

Insurance company UnitedHealthcare will start covering visits to the doctor's office — via video chat. Patients and physicians talk live online — on smartphones, tablets or home computer — to get to a clinical diagnosis. This move to cybermedicine could save insurers a ton of money — or have unintended consequences.

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NPR Ed
4:27 pm
Thu April 30, 2015

The Plan To Give E-Books To Poor Kids

President Obama announced an initiative to give e-books to low-income students while visiting the Anacostia Library in Washington on Thursday.
Shawn Thew /LANDOV

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 8:19 pm

Brown Bear, Brown Bear what do you see?

I see a blue horse, a purple cat, and a new program — unveiled today by President Obama — with one goal in mind:

To put good books in the hands of low-income kids.

More specifically, $250 million worth of e-books available to young, low-income readers — free. The effort will work through a new app, being developed by the New York Public Library, that has the buy-in of all the major publishers.

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The Salt
1:18 pm
Wed April 29, 2015

These Parents Make Lovely Lunch Bag Art. Not Everyone Is Pleased

Samantha Lee's take on The Girl With The Pearl Earring.
Courtesy of Samantha Lee

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 5:03 pm

While many kids are lucky if their parents send them off to school with a ham and cheese sandwich and an apple in their packed lunches, for some, the midday meal is a work of art.

Some parents include paper napkins with hand-drawn illustrations so elaborate that children have preferred to use their own clothing to wipe up spills. Others decorate the once-boring brown paper bag with fanciful dragons and scenes from Star Wars or re-create great works of art in food. (Think Vermeer's Girl With A Pearl Earring rendered in sushi.)

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The Two-Way
10:47 am
Wed April 29, 2015

Bud Light Pulls Label With Message That Sparked Backlash

Anheuser-Busch has apologized for a message on bottles of Bud Light that said it is "the perfect beer for removing 'no' from your vocabulary for the night." The labels are no longer being produced.
GhosX9 Reddit

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 5:10 pm

The label promised that Bud Light was "the perfect beer for removing 'no' from your vocabulary for the night." But that's exactly the word that occurred to many people who say the message recalls alcohol's troublesome connection to sexual assaults.

Anheuser-Busch says the slogan is one of many messages it has printed on beer labels as part of its "UpForWhatever" ad campaign. But it acknowledges that it "missed the mark" with this one, saying that it has stopped making the label.

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All Tech Considered
3:50 am
Wed April 29, 2015

Libraries Make Space For 3-D Printers; Rules Are Sure To Follow

Liam Gaynor (center), 8, and Laura Stark (right), 8, watch as an object is made on a 3-D printer at the Hillsdale (N.J.) Public Library in January.
Michael Karas North Jersey/Landov

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 2:18 pm

At hundreds of libraries across the U.S., 3-D printers can sometimes be heard whirring in the background, part of an effort to encourage interest in the new technology and foster DIY "maker spaces."

In some libraries, officials have begun to set restrictions on the 3-D printers amid concerns about how they'll be used.

At the University City Public Library in St. Louis, Patrick Wall recently printed a green plastic sword from the game Minecraft.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
11:03 am
Tue April 28, 2015

Why Video Games Matter

The Last of Us is a video game that breaks the traditional narrative form of storytelling in games.
Naughty Dog

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 11:21 am

Human beings are storytellers. This basic, constant instinct is evident throughout history — from creation narratives told around the night's fire to Greek playwrights to the first novels to the flickering images of early motion pictures.

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All Tech Considered
5:15 am
Tue April 28, 2015

Report: To Aid Combat, Russia Wages Cyberwar Against Ukraine

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 4:11 pm

The rules of War 2.0 (or 3.0) are murky. Experts and pundits say that cyberwarfare is happening. And it makes sense. But it has been very hard to prove.

A new report adds to the body of evidence, charging that the Russian military is waging a sustained cyber campaign against Ukrainian military and law enforcement agencies, and the purpose is to extract a steady stream of classified documents that can aid violence and on-the-ground combat.

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All Tech Considered
7:17 pm
Mon April 27, 2015

How Tech Firms Are Helping People In The Nepal Earthquake Zone

A Nepalese man checks his cellphone as people stay on open ground from fears of earthquake tremors in Kathmandu, Nepal, on Monday.
Niranjan Shrestha AP

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 11:16 am

The feeling that tech giants such as Facebook and Google know exactly where we are and what we're doing can be uncomfortable. Targeted advertisements or suggestions based on our location can feel like an invasion of privacy.

But the collection of our digital data has an upside in certain circumstances, and the aftermath of the massive earthquake in Nepal provides a good example.

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All Tech Considered
6:58 pm
Mon April 27, 2015

When The Sharing Economy Brings Unexpected Experiences

Originally published on Wed May 6, 2015 5:34 pm

Thanks to the fast-growing sharing economy, anyone can make money renting out his home or car — or by becoming a personal chef.

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All Tech Considered
6:12 pm
Mon April 27, 2015

Google Experimenting With Patent Marketplace To Combat Trolls

A Google sign at the company's headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. Google is launching a two-week-long patent marketplace next month, where sellers can name their own price.
Marcio Jose Sanchez AP

In the most straightforward of language, Google announced its very own patent marketplace on Monday. "We invite you to sell us your patents," reads the first sentence of the blog post announcing the news.

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