Day: March 18, 2017

Google offers more control, after ads on offensive content leads to brand boycott

 Google plans to give its advertising clients more control over where their ads appear on YouTube and the Google Display Network, which posts advertising to third-party websites.
It announced the move in a blog post from its European business after major brands pulled ads from the platform because they appeared against offensive content, such as videos promoting terrorism or anti-Semitism.
The U.K. Read More

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Soba Noodle Bowls with Spinach and Poached Eggs

Sesame Soba Noodle Bowls

Is it spring yet?!

Where I live in the Northeast, the sun says it’s spring but the temperature outside says it’s anything but. We could still have a major snowstorm as late as April!

This noodle bowl is perfect for this in-between time. Poached eggs add a satisfying richness to the meal. They are also symbol of renewal, and right about now, I’m ready for one.

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The great enterprise chat race

Track sprinters lined up at starting The competitive deck appears nearly stacked against the startup, and it seems that every other month a new product launches from a major tech company that’s billed in the tech press as the next “Slack Killer.” What Slack does isn’t actually all that original as startup ideas go. It merely provides an environment for teams to share information inside a chat client. Yet… Read More

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10 Snapchat tricks to make you a power user

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Think you know Snapchat inside and out? Think again.

With so many frequent updates, Snapchat’s now more feature-packed than ever before. And honestly, who the heck can even keep up with them all?

Not to fret! Whether you consider yourself a power user or not, here are 10 tips to help take your Snapchat game to the next level.

1. Create Snapcode from any website

Snapcodes aren’t just for adding your friends anymore. You can create your own Snapcodes for any website and share them online for other Snapchat users to scan, or if you’re really nuts for them, you can print them up and include them on, say, flyers. Read more…

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Zelda: Art & Artifacts is an enormous art book for Hyrule explorers

The Legend of Zelda: Art & Artifacts is a mammoth book containing art and errata from practically every Zelda title ever released. Having spent a mere afternoon with it, I feel I’ve experienced an adolescence-worth of missed gameplay.

I’ve never gotten around to immersing myself in the Zelda games, but was always struck by the their’ precision and economy, a world crafted more than built. There’s a mysticism, even a darkness to Zelda that seems out of place in Nintendo’s cutesy-poo lineup.

A heroic cycle, with a eternally-recurring hero and nemesis, every generation of the mythos is a strange echo of another, and the star is a stoic mute boy defined by his tools and under fate’s control. Hyrule and its hero are less standard RPG fantasy than a uniquely Japanese new wave murmur, an Elric in Arcadia who brings sunshine rather than storm and never has a single brooding thought and gets to live silently ever after.

Published by Dark Horse Books, it’s 424 pages long and weighs 6 pounds. It’s 12.3 x 9.3 inches long and wide and two inches thick. Notes and other documentation are translated by Aria Tanner, Hisashi Kotobuki, Heidl Plechl and Michael Gombos.

Organized roughly by release date (the canonical continuity seems rather murky), there’s early animation-style cels, box art, instruction booklets, and even some work from the latest title, Breath of the Wild, released a couple of weeks ago.

It goes from exquisitely painted concept art right down to detailed sprite sheets from classic 8-bit outings, and the print quality is outstanding. It’s heavy; you could flatten a cat with it.

I can tell that the selections are far from exhaustive, though: this is clearly an official Nintendo item made by and for people who like the word “franchise.” While it’s good and fair that atrocities such as the Philips-licensed CD-i Zelda games are not included, it also means no Katsuya Terada, for example, a brilliant artist whose Zelda work is among the best and the most off-brand going—but which thereby carries less nostalgia value for its audience, perhaps.

Beyond some fascinating interviews with the creators, there’s not much context, either; it’s a companion volume to the “Historia”, a similarly bulky book dealing with the world’s history in detail.

But I have to get it, now, as the art’s sucked me in, and I don’t have time to play 20 video games to understand what the Hyrule is going on.

PROS

• Big, beautiful book.

• Impeccable color reproduction.

• Unfussy page layouts that don’t crowd the art.

• Get shown a fantasy world, rather than told it.

• See an artistic formula evolve over 30 years

CONS

• Demands a prior interest in Zelda, will probably bore everyone else.

• Seriously, it’s mostly pictures of Link.

• Just making super clear here that there is a high “androgynous lads in green leather” noise floor here to contend with, if it’s not your thing.

The Legend of Zelda: Art & Artifacts [Dark Horse Books at Amazon]

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Crunch Report | Walmart Acquires Modcloth

Apple investing $500 Million into R&D Centers in China, Walmart acquires Modcloth, and John Mannes reports to us about his trip at South by Southwest. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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Sorry Trump, even Fox News thinks your wiretapping claim is BS

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Not everyone at Donald Trump’s favorite news network is gobbling up his latest piece of red meat.  

Fox News anchor Shep Smith countered Trump once again Friday, this time aiming his measured, declaratory tone at the president’s outlandish claim that his predecessor was wiretapping him.

“Fox News knows of no evidence of any kind that the now president of the United States was surveilled at any time in any way,” anchor Shep Smith said during a Friday broadcast. “Full stop.”

Smith’s “full stop” comment, which was spread widely on social media, comes after analyst Andrew Napolitano claimed on Fox & Friends Tuesday that “three intelligence sources have informed Fox News that President Obama went outside the chain of command” and requested British intelligence officials spy on Trump. Read more…

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