August 31st, 2012
02:55 PM ET

Revealing OBL raid details

The daring raid that killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden has always sounded like something out of a Hollywood blockbuster. People eager for details couldn't find out enough about how the secret mission happened.

Now a new book by a former Navy SEAL promises to deliver inside information. The author of "No Easy Day" could face legal action for writing it. And he violated the SEAL's code of silence.

CNN Security Analyst Peter Bergen says it's worth reading.

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Filed under: General
August 30th, 2012
06:55 PM ET

Can you "Like" a candidate enough to vote?

Social media has become an important tool for candidates seeking political office. Just look at Barack Obama taking questions on Reddit. But how much will it impact the outcome of the U.S. presidential race?

This week we asked our regular contributor, Nicholas Thompson, that question. He compared social media to a "great microphone" that both campaigns are using. But he points out that most users of social media are young people, who traditionally do not vote.

Thompson also says, "Social media does not make an election. If it did, we'd be celebrating the coronation of Ron Paul right now because his followers are awesome on the Internet."

What do you think? Could a candidate win your vote through social media?

August 23rd, 2012
07:45 PM ET

"Mwahahaha" makes it into dictionary

The latest words added to the Oxford Dictionaries Online make me feel like I'm eavesdropping at a high school. Allow me to list a few with exclamation points.

Photobomb! Ridic! Douche! Genius! Mwahahaha! Lolz!

See what I mean?

ODO says, "The world of technology remains a major influence on the English language." Many new terms originate from social media.

Read more of the list here.

August 22nd, 2012
03:14 PM ET

Clearing the air in China

I have a simple, though unscientific, method of checking the air quality here in Hong Kong. If I can't see across the harbor to Kowloon from my window, I opt against running outside.

In mainland China, air pollution is a particularly contentious issue. The government is resistant to independent monitoring of its environment.

But kites could help residents of Beijing breathe easier.

Photo courtesy FLOAT Beijing


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Filed under: Art & Science • China
August 21st, 2012
06:55 AM ET

Breaking down the Apple-Samsung trial

It's a rivalry that's arguably more intense inside the courtroom than in stores.

The legal fight between Apple and Samsung is coming to a close in the U.S., as a jury will soon decide which of the tech giants has a better case.

Apple says Samsung ripped off the iPhone and iPad. Samsung says Apple wouldn't have been able to make those products without infringing on Samsung's wireless patents.

To break it all down, we spoke to Nilay Patel - who isn't just the Managing Editor of tech site The Verge, but also a former copyright attorney.

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Filed under: Gadgets • Technology
August 9th, 2012
11:16 PM ET

Gu Kailai's trial kept under wraps

When Chongqing's top cop went missing back in February, News Stream was on it. That drama grew into a saga about a disgraced Chinese politician, his wife, and a dead British businessman.

Now another chapter has ended. Gu Kailai, a woman described as the Jackie Kennedy of China, waits for the court to hand down its verdict. Her trial lasted just a few hours on Thursday.

An official says Gu did not dispute charges that she murdered Neil Heywood. Prosecutors alleged she fought with her former friend "over economic interests" and killed the Briton out of fears for her son's safety.


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Filed under: China
August 2nd, 2012
02:53 PM ET

Openness and the Opening Ceremony

"This is for everyone."

That was the tweet from Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee which was displayed to the world during the London Olympics opening ceremony.

I spoke to Berners-Lee about his commitment to a World Wide Web that is both open and accessible. Although he defended the removal of unauthorized online video by the International Olympics Committee, he didn't mince words about countries where active online censorship takes place.

Berners-Lee said, "Censorship is generally a bad thing. Weak governments worry they need to control information."