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September 24th, 2014
02:16 PM ET

ISS gets its first 3D printer

Life on the International Space Station may never be the same. The crew is now unpacking the latest cargo delivery, which includes the station's first-ever 3D printer.

"Having that on-demand capability is a real game-changer," says Niki Werkheiser, NASA's 3D Printing in Zero-G project manager.

Astronauts will test how the printer performs in microgravity. Samples will be brought back to Earth, to confirm that the technology works the same as on the ground.

If it's successful, the ISS crew will no longer have to rely on resupply missions to bring them the tools they need.

And down the line, a 3D printer would also be a key part of deep space exploration missions.

"We won't be able to launch every single thing that we might ever need with us," Werkheiser says. "So we'll have to have sustainable technologies that allow the astronauts to be able to adapt and use whatever resources are available to them for living and operations."

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Filed under: Space • Technology
September 17th, 2014
09:30 AM ET

"Humans of New York" a window to the world

The very act of observing something changes it.

Brandon Stanton, the 30-year-old photographer behind the Humans of New York blog, experiences this daily. The formula is simple: he walks up to strangers, takes their portraits, asks a few questions and documents the interaction.

"I don't pretend to be showing the whole person," Stanton says. "What I want to do is give people a small window into the lives of these people that they might pass by every single day and not even think twice about."

Since August, Humans of New York has gone global. The United Nations is sponsoring Stanton's world tour to promote its Millenium Development goals.

"We're trying to go to a variety of different places and just listen to people around the world, and hear their stories as they tell them," Stanton says.

So far those places have ranged from a shopping mall in Erbil, Iraq to a refugee camp in Jordan... a bar in Kampala, Uganda to a sidewalk in Kiev, Ukraine.

News Stream caught up with Stanton while he was in New Delhi, India. Hear about some of the most powerful experiences from his trip in the video above.

September 11th, 2014
10:19 PM ET

Did Apple do enough?

September 9th was one of the biggest days for Apple in years. They introduced two larger iPhones, a mobile payments system, and the long-awaited Apple Watch - the first major new product created without the input of the late Steve Jobs.

But are any of them new enough?

After all, the trend for larger phones was pioneered by their arch-rival, Samsung. Mobile payment systems have been around for some time now. And while everyone expected Apple to completely redefine what a smartwatch is... the Apple Watch appears to be just a better version of what's out there; an evolution of current smartwatches instead of a revolution.

So how did Apple do? The New Yorker's Nicholas Thompson gave his take to Kristie Lu Stout.

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Filed under: Gadgets • Technology
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 8th, 2014
09:44 AM ET

Asking LEGO to "Save the scientists"

LEGO’s new Research Institute Minifigures set has caused quite a stir. It features three female scientists, and sold out within days of its limited release last month.

There is now an online petition to bring back the scientists as a permanent fixture. It says, “Strong female characters are important for both girls and boys to see represented in LEGO toys.”

The Research Institute set is one of the few to showcase working women.

The idea for it was submitted by Dutch geochemist Ellen Kooijman. She says she hopes LEGO will make more sets and add additional female scientists and engineers.

Kooijman also says, “If this product actually results in more girls pursuing careers in science that would be really great… because I think diversity is really good for science.”

Click on to hear more from Kooijman’s perspective.

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
September 3rd, 2014
06:57 AM ET

The rise of Xiaomi

Executives in wigs dancing and singing on stage. Hundreds of fans clad in the same orange shirt cheering them on. Fans racing on stage to win plush toys.

I wasn't sure what to expect from my first Xiaomi fan event. But I didn't expect this.

FULL POST

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Filed under: China • Technology • Titans of Tech
September 2nd, 2014
07:06 PM ET

Cloud computing demystified

The FBI has entered the hunt for the hacker who stole dozens of private celebrity photos. The nude images may have been stored in the "cloud."

It's safe to say that many don't really understand cloud computing. The new Cameron Diaz film "Sex Tape" is based around the idea that nobody gets how it works.

But it's actually fairly simple.

cloud2The cloud is really just another word for servers on the Internet. Using the cloud means you're outsourcing tasks to those servers that might otherwise be performed by your local device. The most common one is to use the cloud for storage; so, instead of storing data on your computer, data is stored on remote servers that you access via the Internet.

Think of it like putting your money in a bank. You're putting your property in a dedicated storage space. Using a bank means you don't have to keep all your money in a piggy bank at home, while using the cloud means you don't have to have every photo you've ever taken taking up valuable space on your iPad. And when you do want to see your photos, storing them on the cloud allows you to access it on any device - similar to how banks allow you to withdraw money from any ATM.

And it's a safe bet that you're already using cloud services. If you've ever used Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo! Mail or any web mail service, then you've been storing your email in the cloud.

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Filed under: Data • Technology
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