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Weekly Rewind: RIP Chuck Berry, the newest iPhone color, Samsung's AI assistant Bixby

top tech stories 03 24 2017 chuck berry head
A lot can happen in a week when it comes to tech. The constant onslaught of news makes it nigh impossible for mere mortals with real lives to keep track of everything. That’s why we’ve compiled a quick and dirty list of this week’s top 10 tech stories, from Apple’s highly anticipated red iPhone to Lexus’ new luxury yacht — it’s all here.

Apple has finally taken the wraps off the new ruby red ‘iPhone (RED)’

On Tuesday, in partnership with nonprofit Product (RED), Apple added a brand new, ruby red iPhone model to its roster: the iPhone (RED). Like the company’s (RED) iPod Nano, Beats headphones, and Smart Battery cases, the launch promotes Product (RED)’s ongoing effort to combat HIV and AIDS, which remain among the globe’s worst health problems. More than 35 million people have died of the virus, and 37 million are infected each year, according to Product (RED).

Read the full story here.

Diets are not equal for all people; ancestral homelands can make a difference

Proponents of specific food class-centric diets such as paleo, vegan, gluten-free, ketogenic, or the Mediterranean diet often tend to prescribe their plans for everyone. Not so fast, says a group from the University of California, Berkeley. Biologists at UC Berkeley and other institutions around the world have published research that shows genetic differences from natural selection based on dietary changes in Europe, Ars Technica reports.

Read the full story here.

Lexus floats a new brand idea: The high-performance Lexus Sports Yacht

What is it with big-name carmakers and luxury sports yachts? Mercedes-Benz, Aston Martin, and Bugatti have all launched or shown concepts of yachts that are slick, fast, and extremely pricey. Now we can add Lexus to the gang with the Lexus Sports Yacht, which was recently introduced at the Miami International Boat Show.

Read the full story here.

What’s in a Name? Meet Bixby — the smart sidekick who’ll help you use your digital gear

There’s a new name in artificial assistants, but Samsung argues this one won’t tell you dumb jokes or a weather forecast, nor will it look up facts for you online. This bright assistant is meant to improve your interactions with your digital life — not just with your smartphone, but with your washing machine, thermostat, vacuum cleaner, and more. It’s nothing less than a rethink of how we use our stuff.

“Philosophically, what we’re looking at is revolutionizing the interface,” Injong Rhee, head of research and development at Samsung Mobile Communications Business Group, told Digital Trends.

Read the full story here.

Novel braille smartwatch enables the blind to read notifications

The Dot is a smartwatch with a unique interface that is able to translate basic notifications for blind users by dynamically reproducing braille on its specialized surface. It has been in development for the past couple of years, but mass production has finally begun, with the first orders set to ship out in April. Although braille has been a useful tool for those with limited vision for close to 200 years, in an age of touchscreens and smart devices, many of the world’s millions of visually impaired can be left out of the loop.

Read the full story here.

Studying brain waves while watching trailers can help predict a film’s success

As an industry built around making money by guessing what the general population wants to watch, Hollywood has been trying to get into our minds for years. An experiment at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management may have cracked the best way to do this: by literally reading moviegoers’ brain waves.

Read the full story here.

Five legendary bands whose music wouldn’t sound the same without the late Chuck Berry

We lost one of popular music’s most important and influential musical architects on Saturday, as Chuck Berry died at the age of 90. Berry’s profound lyrics, melodies, and guitar stylings are the very bedrock of all rock-influenced music made in the past six decades. Without the iconic St. Louis-born musician, the sounds coming out of your radio, streaming service, or record player would be profoundly different.

Read the full story here.

Osprey’s affordable new anti-gravity packs save your back without injuring your wallet

Osprey set the standard in backpacking comfort when it introduced its cutting-edge Anti-Gravity suspension and back panel in 2015. The Atmos and Aura Backpacks were the first models to be equipped with Osprey’s AG technology, and were lauded for their ability to distribute the weight of the pack and make you feel like you were carrying less weight.

Now this revolutionary suspension system is making its way to other backpacks in Osprey’s lineup — new for the spring 2017 hiking season are AG versions of the popular Aether and Ariel line of long distance backpacks.

Read the full story here.

How Celebrity Cruises is using smartphones to put power in passengers’ hands

Whether by plane, train, or automobile, our standard modes of travel are getting more connected. As each becomes another “device” within the Internet of Things, they are able to provide real-time information and personalization that wasn’t possible before. We can now add cruises into the mix.

Carnival revealed its connected Medallion technology, which helps passengers tailor experiences to their needs. And now Celebrity Cruises is following suit, and it’s using the smartphone as the starting point. We recently visited Celebrity’s Innovation Lab, in Miami, to look at some of the things the company has in store.

Read the full story here.

Hackers demand Apple pay up or millions of iCloud accounts will be wiped

A group of hackers is allegedly trying to extort Apple by holding its customers’ data for ransom and threatening to remotely wipe iCloud accounts connected to both iPhones and iPads if the demands are not met. The group self-identifies as the “Turkish Crime Family,” and is demanding either $75,000 in Ethereum or Bitcoin or $100,000 in iTunes gift cards, according to a report from Motherboard. Not only that, but the hackers gave Apple an April 7 deadline to meet the demands — or else they will start wiping both phones and iCloud accounts.

Read the full story here.

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