Wednesday, March 3

Month: June 2014

NPR Report: Web Still Widely Unprotected a Year After Snowden Leaks
World

NPR Report: Web Still Widely Unprotected a Year After Snowden Leaks

It's been just over a year since the British newspaper The Guardian began releasing leaked intelligence information from former NSA analyst Edward Snowden. In partnership with the paper's Glenn Greenwald, Snowden painted a picture of a National Security Agency that had become more like the tyrannical government in Orwell's 1984 than a benevolent body that just wanted to keep the United States safe. The conclusion? We've all, every single one of us that uses the internet, have been and continue to be watched online. Huge tech companies, from Google to Twitter, promised to start encrypting their users data and closing security holes -- not a foolproof way to ward off the NSA, but encryption makes it more difficult for them to act on their carte blanche. While many of our most used service...
Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Soliciting and Reposting Nude Images of Teenager
Local

Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Soliciting and Reposting Nude Images of Teenager

According to a new study by the Crimes Against Children Research Center, about one in five children between the ages of 10 and 17 will end up receiving unwanted sexual solicitations online. This statistic hit especially close to home for Oakland this week -- Alex Gonzalez, of New Jersey, was sentenced for sexually coercing a teenager online. After pleading guilty, he received a 10 year federal prison sentence. The story is one that many parents hope to never hear. According to federal prosecutors working the case, Gonzalez convinced a 15-year-old girl to take nude photographs and send them to him via a photo-sharing phone app. The teenager then said she wanted no further contact with Gonzalez. At this point, he attempted to "punish" her with a variety of malicious online activity. On...
Old Navy Tee Features Inaccurate Map of Chicago, Social Media Overreacts
Business, Fashion

Old Navy Tee Features Inaccurate Map of Chicago, Social Media Overreacts

A new graphic tee from Old Navy features a map of old Chicago neighborhoods, but its less-than-accurate design has earned it some scorn on social media. The shirt depicts such neighborhoods as Austin and Lincoln Park as being right next to each other, when in reality they're not at all. Furthermore, it doesn't even include Pilsen, Rogers Park, or Logan Square. Worse, the shirt also features non-existent neighborhoods, too. One Twitter user, @JenniferH, tweeted a photo of the shirt with a caption that read, "most inaccurate Chicago neighborhood map ever." However, social media users do tend to blow things out of proportion. As @GSElevator once tweeted, "For every action, there's a social media overreaction." One Old Navy shopper paused to find her own neighborhood, Hyde Park, on...
Breast Implants Can Restore a Woman’s Body and Happiness
Fashion, Lifestyle

Breast Implants Can Restore a Woman’s Body and Happiness

Getting cosmetic surgery is a big decision, but Americans are happy to pay the price. They spent over 10 billion dollars on plastic surgery in 2011, but what they get in return probably can't be measured in dollar amounts. In our image obsessed world, we're becoming more and more aware of our appearance and how others may view us (think selfie culture). Much of what other people think of us -- and what we think of ourselves -- is based on what we look like, and it often isn't exactly what we want. The reasons to get breast implants vary, but it's certainly a popular choice. Since 2000, the number of American women who choose to get breast augmentation surgery has increased 45%, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. In the U.S., of all plastic surgeries breast augment...
Scheduled Woodland Hills Academy Renovations to Include Terrazzo Flooring
Local

Scheduled Woodland Hills Academy Renovations to Include Terrazzo Flooring

The Pittsburgh-area Woodland Hills Academy will be receiving extensive renovations over the 2014-15 school year, according to a May 26 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article. The renovation work, to cost around $15 million total, will require the school's more than 500 students and teachers to relocate for at least one academic year to the Word of God School in nearby Swissvale, the article states. The renovations will use about 80% of remaining funds left from a bond that the Woodland Hills School District took out in 2005. The Woodland Hills Academy Building, approximately a century old, is expected to receive a number of updates and upgrades during the renovation. Some of the district's planned changes include increasing lighting panels throughout the building, an elevator and lower...
Although eBay Denies It, eBay Now Same Day Local Deliveries Might End, Says Source
Business

Although eBay Denies It, eBay Now Same Day Local Deliveries Might End, Says Source

A personal shopping and same day delivery courier service from eBay might be facing serious troubles, according to anonymous sources,after reports surfaced speculating that the company might shut down their eBay Now program. In 2012, eBay launched the same day delivery service to compete with other local delivery companies in large cities, but now the high costs and workforce issues might put a stop to eBay Now in the future.At the end of April, eBay fired its team of "valets" and began using third party courier services instead. Yet the service is still costing the company a lot in resources, and it may have lost some or all of its pricing deal with retail giant Best Buy, a lucrative source for the company's program. Although eBay announced plans to expand their eBay Now services to Lo...
Why the Latest Trend in Alternative Veterinary Medicine Won’t Help Your Pet
Lifestyle

Why the Latest Trend in Alternative Veterinary Medicine Won’t Help Your Pet

The Eastern practice of acupuncture as an alternative form of veterinary treatment has made its way to American shores -- and it is growing in popularity at a rapid rate, according to a May 5 Slate article. Many American veterinary schools now offer animal acupuncture courses, and there are approximately 4,000 veterinarians across the country who are qualified to stick needles in your pet in exchange for money. However, expert opinions on whether veterinary acupuncture is actually an effective form of treatment are highly conflicted. Most of the scientific studies intending to prove the effectiveness of this practice so far have been unreliable -- according to Slate, four out of every five studies on animal acupuncture are unreliable; the fifth usually disproves the idea that acupunctur...
Researchers Designing Affordable, OLED Lighting For Commercial Spaces and Homes
Business

Researchers Designing Affordable, OLED Lighting For Commercial Spaces and Homes

The reign of energy-efficient coil light bulbs is effectively over, and popular LED (light-emitting diode) lights may be replaced much sooner than anticipated. "OLED (organic light-emitting diode) lighting replaces the small, bright dots of LEDs with sheets of light that aren't so piercingly bright," CNET explains. "That means they can illuminate subjects directly without reflectors, diffusers, and other apparatus needed to spread light and protect eyes from glare." Products using OLED lighting are already in the works. Car manufacturers, specifically Jaguar Land Rover, will release new models with OLED displays. Similarly, Apple's iWatch, "poised to hit the consumer space in 2014," will consist of a "flexible plastic OLED screen," according to +Plastic Electronics. Researchers belie...
The “Endless T-Shirt” Begins to Become a Trend
Fashion

The “Endless T-Shirt” Begins to Become a Trend

A fashion trend that would make M. C. Escher nod in approval, Salvador Dalí's eyes light up, and Christopher Nolan feel déjà vu is beginning. The "endless t-shirt," as it's been dubbed, features a person wearing a t-shirt that bears the likeness of another person wearing a t-shirt that bears the likeness of the first person. A photo of Hollywood actor Ryan Gosling wearing a shirt with a picture of Macaulay Culkin in his child-star days caught the now adult Culkin's attention. In a humorous response, Culkin released a photo of himself wearing a t-shirt with the aforementioned picture of Gosling printed on it. Internet audiences have loved it, and have even photoshopped Gosling wearing a shirt with Culkin's response photo on it.  One, amusing, isolated incident does not make a trend, t...
When to Consider an Ergonomic Chair
Lifestyle

When to Consider an Ergonomic Chair

Back pain -- either temporary or chronic -- is one of the most common work-related injuries, with at least 50% of Americans admitting to having back pain symptoms. It is often caused by ordinary work activities such as sitting in an office chair, or lifting heavy items. Because many Americans sit for an extended amount of time every day, one of the easiest solutions to solving back pain is to buy a chair that is specifically designed to reduce musculoskeletal stress. The best type of chair to solve such issues is an ergonomic one. An ergonomic chair is designed to suit a range of people, but you should not simply purchase an ergonomic chair just because is it labeled as such. There is also no guarantee that every ergonomic chair is best for you. Finding the right chair is important f...