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November 9th, 2014
08:44 AM ET

Using art to save the Asian elephant

Call it the elephant in the room. It may be a cliché, but the fact that elephant populations are dwindling around the world is a growing problem that can’t be ignored.

Africa has seen its elephant population decline from 1.3 million several decades ago to an estimated 419,000 now. Poaching still goes unchecked in some parts of the continent.

The Environmental Investigation Agency’s latest report says the situation is especially grim in Tanzania.

Tanzania lost 10,000 elephants to poaching last year alone – more than any other country in Africa.

And the EIA makes damning allegations about China, the world's largest ivory market. It links some smuggling to Chinese officials who have accompanied the president to Africa. Beijing has denied the claims.

But it’s not just African elephants facing a perilous future. Their Asian cousins are also in a battle for survival. FULL POST

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Filed under: Art & Science • China • General
October 24th, 2014
02:41 PM ET

Watch Mark Zuckerberg speak Chinese

In case you missed it, here's Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaking Mandarin Chinese at Beijing's Tsinghua University.

Zuckerberg surprised the audience by speaking and answering questions in Mandarin for almost 30-minutes.

His heavy accent caused a few moments of misunderstanding - like when he tried to say the word "billion" but it came out as "eleven."

But no matter. It was an inspiring effort!

October 13th, 2014
12:58 PM ET

Sachs: Ebola is a controllable epidemic

An American nurse has become the first person to contract Ebola in the U.S., raising fear and alarm about the outbreak in the West.

In the Ebola hotzone of West Africa, desperation grows as thousands of people are struck by the deadly virus - including healthcare workers on the front line.

The outbreak may be spreading, but professor and senior United Nations advisor Jeffrey Sachs tells me Ebola can be controlled in 6 months.

"This is a controllable epidemic but the epidemic has so far outrun the control efforts," he says.

"This is logistics, it's equipment, it's basic health protocols, it's diagnostics. All the pieces of a basic control system that need to be rapidly scaled up."

Watch the video to hear his recommended next steps, and what is at stake for Africa and the world if Ebola is not contained.

October 1st, 2014
01:37 PM ET

How Hong Kong protesters spread their message

It has been dubbed the "Umbrella Revolution." But that isn't the only symbol to come out of Hong Kong's pro-democracy protests.

Local artist Kacey Wong also explains the meaning of the yellow ribbons and numbers spotted on signs.

He believes there is a lot at stake during this demonstration for universal suffrage.

"Right now I can see this war on culture. The winners will get to keep their way of life and their culture. And if you lose in this war, we have to fall back," Wong says. "We don’t want to fall back into the chaos that we read in the news from mainland China. I think it is time for mainland government officials to learn that if they want to join the international community, they have to behave in a civilized way. And this is a golden opportunity."


Filed under: General
September 11th, 2014
02:26 PM ET

The end of the iPod Classic

Thirteen years ago, Apple was a small computer maker. It's now the most valuable company in the world.

And that transformation was triggered by the iPod.

Apple has quietly discontinued the iPod Classic, the latest incarnation of the original iPod. While the line lives on in the shape of the Touch, Nano and Shuffle, they aren't as iconic as the original. When you think iPod, you think of the Classic: Shaped like a deck of cards, with a metallic back, and of course, the scrollwheel.

But the original design lives on in one tiny way: The top row of icons on the Apple Store includes the classic iPod silhouette.

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Filed under: General • Technology
September 9th, 2014
02:19 PM ET

Destiny's mingleplayer experience

Few realize that many of the first video games were multiplayer. It took time for computers to be smart enough to provide decent opponents, leading to the rise of singleplayer games.

Now Destiny is about to introduce gamers to a new type of gaming: mingleplayer. FULL POST

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Filed under: Games • General • Technology
September 5th, 2014
09:53 AM ET

Can Apple solve iCloud problems?

Apple is strengthening security features after the high-profile hack attack that released celebrities' private photos.

Those nude images were posted online just nine days before Apple's next launch event. The company is expected to unveil a wearable device on September 9.

CNN Contributor Nicholas Thompson points out that this is the first time Apple is launching a new product category under Tim Cook's leadership.

"Up until last week, everybody thought this would be his great moment to shine. There was huge anticipation and excitement. And now suddenly there's this hack," Thompson says.

But that's not the only reason this attack comes at a bad time for Apple.

"They haven't done as well with cloud services. So iCloud is not as good as some of their competitors. It still has flaws," Thompson says. "Having this big problem makes some people wonder in the tech industry, 'Can Apple really succeed in this next step in the evolution of the industry?'"

Watch the video above to hear why Thompson thinks Apple can get the cloud under control, and learn how to protect yourself online.


Filed under: General
September 3rd, 2014
10:03 PM ET

Game Faces: Rami Ismail

For a small developer that's just four years old, Vlambeer has a surprising influence on the gaming industry.

The Dutch studio is made up of just two people, but it's one of the most well-known indie developers. Co-founder Rami Ismail almost feels like an unofficial spokesman for the industry.

"We are not afraid to speak up against things we find problematic in the industry, and things we find interesting in the industry," said Ismail.

Indeed, he has been a staunch supporter of Anita Sarkeesian and her series examining women in video games - a series that has sparked a wave of abuse for Sarkeesian and those who stand with her.

He also suggested Vlambeer's high profile might be because the company always seems to find itself in the middle of the industry's latest trends. FULL POST

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Filed under: Game Faces • Games • General • Technology
May 16th, 2014
02:11 PM ET

A strong message against illegal ivory

This week, the Hong Kong government started to destroy almost 30 tons of confiscated ivory.

It is destroying the massive stockpile by burning it. Officials plan to incinerate about three tons of illegal ivory a month. The process is expected to take at least a year.

Ivory has long been valued in China for making prized seals and carvings - turning China into a global hub for the illegal ivory trade.

So can this high-profile government program send a strong enough message to end the public's appetite for elephant tusks?

I talked to wildlife activist Sharon Kwok for her reaction to the campaign.

May 1st, 2014
07:54 PM ET

Game Faces: Jake Kazdal

It's always special to see a product that truly reflects its creator. GALAK-Z: The Dimensional bears the fingerprints of 17-BIT's Jake Kazdal. FULL POST

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Filed under: Game Faces • Games • General • Technology
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