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First POST: Better Underwear

BY Rebecca Chao | Friday, June 13 2014

Better Underwear

  • Tech activist Cory Doctorow fought back against the recent school ban of his new hacking-promoting and authority-defying book, "Little Brother," by sending 200 free copies to students at Booker T. Washington High School in Pensacola, Fla. The book is also available via free download.

  • During an interview via a telepresence BEAM robot with Der Tagesspeiggel's Julia Prosinger, Edward Snowden had to coach his lawyer Ben Wizner on how to attend to the reporter who collapsed with an epileptic seizure induced by the robot's flickering screen. Snowden began suffering from seizures when he was 23-years-old.

  • The Wired's Andy Greenberg explains how the Snowdenbot works; for example, Snowden is able to drive himself around at two miles per hour.

  • Low-tech high impact? A man in the D.R.C. turns his villages' garbage into soccer balls for the kids just in time for the World Cup.

  • Elon Musk goes open source with his Tesla green cars. His hope is to set an example for the industry. He writes in a blog post:

    "Given that annual new vehicle production is approaching 100 million per year and the global fleet is approximately 2 billion cars, it is impossible for Tesla to build electric cars fast enough to address the carbon crisis. By the same token, it means the market is enormous. Our true competition is not the small trickle of non-Tesla electric cars being produced, but rather the enormous flood of gasoline cars pouring out of the world’s factories every day."

  • Musk may have a good point. A new report says that patents kill innovation.

  • A new tool from Five Labs lets you look at how advertisers map out your personality based on your Facebook profile.

  • The tool launched just in time for Facebook's new data policy, which allows users to see what type of data Facebook keeps track of. However, its new rules will also involve some "unprecedented" levels of user data collection by monitoring your likes on third party sites to increase the efficiency of their targeted ads.

  • Speaking of targeted ads, the winner of the best targeted ad goes to whatever's being used by the New York Times. Next to an article about the NSA's face-imaging program -- which went into hyperdrive after the attempted bombings at Time Square and by the underwear bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutalla -- is an ad from a men's clothing company that superimposes the words, "Wear Better Underwear" over a picture of men's briefs.

  • We have more PDF14 videos for you: Ilyse Hogue on the Internet and stigma in "Virtual Jiu-Jitsu: Whose Stigma is it Now?" Andrew Rasiej and Brad Smith in a Q&A about "the civics of tech." Ben Kallos at the NYC OpenGov Workshop.

  • We also have a PDF14 video and transcript of Snowden's talk with John Perry Barlow.

  • Happy Solar Max on Friday the 13th!