‘Super Mario Bros. Encyclopedia’ coming soon to a bookstore near you

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If simply playing Super Mario games isn’t enough and you want to dig deeper into the history of the franchise, look no further than the Super Mario Bros. Encyclopedia, which Kotaku says is coming stateside later this year. First released in Japan a few years ago, the Mario Bros. tome will be published by Dark Horse Books in the United States, which is the same publisher that handled Nintendo’s three Legend of Zelda books in recent years.

Super Mario Encyclopedia is jam-packed with content from all seventeen Super Mario games–from the original Super Mario Bros. to Super Mario 3D World,” reads the description from the Amazon store page.

“Track the evolution of the Goomba, witness the introduction of Yoshi, and relive your favorite levels. This tome also contains an interview with producer Takashi Tezuka, tips to help you find every coin, star, sun, and mushroom–even explanations of glitches! With information on enemies, items, obstacles, and worlds from over thirty years of Mario, Super Mario Encyclopedia is the definitive resource for everything Super Mario!”

256 pages of information, guides, interviews and more from the Mushroom Kingdom. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like Nintendo was able to sneak in anything about 2017’s Super Mario Odyssey in this book, but considering how massive the Switch game is, maybe it will get a book all its own at some point down the road.

According to Kotaku (as well as the Amazon store page), the Super Mario Encyclopedia will be out on October 23rd, 2018 and will retail for $39.99. No word yet on a special collector’s edition, but we’ll be keeping an eye out.

Washington DC has given Elon Musk a permit for his Hyperloop

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In the middle of last year, Elon Musk announced that he had “verbal government approval” to build a Washington DC to New York City Hyperloop that would shuttle passengers between the two cities in just 29 minutes.

The plan was classic Musk-level audacity, but one thing that was also quintessentially Musk was the lack of details. “Verbal government approval” doesn’t mean much, and without any hard plans or route guidance to go off, most people filed the plan away in the Things Elon Says drawer.

But thanks to a permit from DC government, The Boring Company can now conduct preparatory and excavation work in an old car park in Washington’s NoMa district. The Boring Company didn’t divulge its full plans for the site, but a spokesperson told the Washington Post that “a New York Avenue location, if constructed, could become a station” in the broader Hyperloop system.

To be clear, this isn’t a permit to build a Hyperloop. It’s a license to dig a big hole in the ground and do some prep work. Obtaining permission from the federal government and four states to dig a giant underground tunnel, all associated infrastructure, and a bunch of stations will take much longer.

But if nothing else, it shows that The Boring Company is serious about following through on Musk’s vision. Government officials at every level have been cautiously welcoming of a Hyperloop, but without clear details about the route, timeline, or funding, it’s difficult for any government to take a real policy stance. The DC Mayor’s Chief of Staff, John Falcicchio, gave a statement to the Washington Post that demonstrates just how hard it is for any administration to go all-in on Musk’s plan just yet:

“We’re just beginning, in the mayor’s office, our conversation to get an understanding of what the general vision is for Hyperloop,” Falcicchio said. Asked whether the Bowser administration supports the project, he was somewhat upbeat but noncommittal, adding: “We’re open to the concept of moving people around the region more efficiently.”

Apple ‘didn’t test the HomePod enough,’ design experts claim

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The HomePod, a $349 smart speaker that signaled Apple’s opening salvo in the war against Amazon Echo and Google Home, is off to a bad start. Despite reviews that stressed fantastic sound from such a small speaker, the HomePod failed to sell out, likely hurt by a poor voice assistant and a lack of standard features like multi-room pairing.

To make bad things even worse, it was revealed last week that the speaker can leave a white ring on some wooden surfaces. Apple tried to downplay the issue, saying that it’s ‘not unusual‘ for a speaker to do that, but by that point, the ‘Ring of doom’ narrative was already too strong.

Apple’s statement made it seem like nothing was out of the ordinary. “It is not unusual for any speaker with a vibration-dampening silicone base to leave mild marks when placed on some wooden surfaces,” the company said in an updated support article for the HomePod. “The marks can be caused by oils diffusing between the silicone base and the table surface, and will often go away after several days when the speaker is removed from the wooden surface. If not, wiping the surface gently with a soft damp or dry cloth may remove the marks. If marks persist, clean the surface with the furniture manufacturer’s recommended cleaning process. If you’re concerned about this, we recommend placing your HomePod on a different surface.”

But according to industrial design specialists contacted by Business Insider, the problem was indeed “unusual,” and a lack of attention to detail was the culprit:

“I’m actually very surprised,” said Cesar Viramontes, a Senior Industrial Designer at Y Studios, a San Francisco based firm that has worked on everything from TV set top boxes to digital picture frames. Viramontes, who has worked on numerous speakers in the past, said it’s not an issue he’s encountered before.

“They didn’t test the product enough and in the right variety of circumstances, especially considering that a wood surface is a very likely support for the product,” said Ignazio Moresco, a product design expert who has worked at frog design, Microsoft and Ericsson.

“They should have caught the issue if they followed a rigorous QA process,” he said, referring to the quality assurance process that hardware makers put new products through to ensure that they are consumer-ready.

That’s the bad news. The good news is that it might be an easy fix:

Apple may need to “re-tool” the manufacturing process since silicone is manufactured using a different process than the other kinds of elastomer,” said Berkowitz. If that’s necessary, the process could take anywhere from two weeks to six weeks, he noted.

“It’s an issue, but I think it’s probably going to be one that’ll be corrected in the next round of manufacturing,” said Y Studios’ Viramontes. “I think it will be a minor issue, and people will probably forget about it in the next couple of months when it goes away.”

At this point, the damage is likely done for Apple. Anyone who already owns a HomePod (or is thinking about buying one) will use a coaster, regardless of whether or not Apple “fixes” the problem. The stains from the HomePod were never really the problem — it’s a simple issue to work around, even for the small number of customers affected — but it’s the fact that Apple seemingly didn’t know about the problem that made it embarrassing.

Alleged Xperia XZ2 Compact prototype leaks ahead of MWC

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A reader left a comment on a post from Xperia Blog with an alleged photo of the Sony Xperia XZ2 Compact that is set to be announced at the MWC which kicks off this upcoming weekend. The commenter claims that the device next to the Xperia Z5 Compact is actually a prototype of the Xperia XZ2 Compact.

The commenter also says that the picture might not represent final hardware and may be different from what Sony announces on stage at the MWC. The device has a curved bottom design, which deviates from Sony’s usual blocky slab design.

Sony Xperia Z5 Compact (left) next to alleged Sony Xperia XZ2 Compact (right)
Sony Xperia Z5 Compact (left) next to alleged Sony Xperia XZ2 Compact (right)

Grisha, the commenter, also states the phone has no 3.5 mm headphone jack and claims the fingerprint sensor has been placed on the devices rear like other Xperia XA2 devices. Finally, Grisha says that the final design will have an upper bezel just a tad smaller and is close to the final design of the phone.

Source

Sony tries to steal the MWC hype with this curved smartphone teaser

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Samsung and the Galaxy S9 are already shaping up to be the winners of the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The Galaxy S9 is on everyone’s lips, as it’s featured in more rumors and leaks than any other handset supposed to be unveiled at the show.

But Sony just released a puzzling teaser for its own MWC 2018 press event. The company posted a 23-second clip on Twitter and Instagram, that shows a hand reaching out to hold what appears to be a curved device.

Last year, Sony unveiled an interesting Xperia XZ Premium phone, which was named the best new smartphone at MWC 2017. Sony indeed surprised the audience with its announcement, taking advantage of the Galaxy S8’s absence from the same show.

But no matter how great that device looked like, and no matter how powerful it was supposed to be, the Xperia XZ Premium had one major handicap. It was stuck in the past when it comes to design. MWC 2017 brought us the LG G6, an all-screen handset with minimal bezels, and we already knew the Galaxy S8 and iPhone X would introduce the same type of design.

Fast forward to a year later, and it’s next-gen design that Sony’s teaser alludes to. Sony’s video, posted on social media a week before its customary early Monday MWC press event, suggests the next flagship will feature some sort of curvature, likely on the outside. It’s probably too early to dream of a foldable Sony handset. Instead, Sony is perhaps teasing a device that’s more comfortable to hold thanks to a curved rear shell. We’ll tell you exactly what it is come February 26th, as soon as Sony unveils its new smartphone models.

There’s something wrong with NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

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NASA has had an incredible streak of good luck as of late with spacecraft that have far outlived their expectations. Cassini at Saturn, the Opportunity rover on Mars, and several other pieces of high-tech space hardware have performed for much longer than was initially expected of them. Unfortunately, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which was launched in 2005 and has delivered more data on the Red Planet than any other Mars mission, is starting to cause some headaches.

According to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the spacecraft has been put into “precautionary standby status” after it alerted its handlers of low battery voltage. The craft is equipped with solar panels that power its instruments, but when it swings to the dark side of the planet it relies on rechargeable batteries to keep it up and running. Now, NASA has to figure out exactly what is wrong, and do so from over 30 million miles away.

“We’re in the diagnostic stage, to better understand the behavior of the batteries and ways to give ourselves more options for managing them in the future,” MRO Project Manager Dan Johnston explains. “We will restore MRO’s service as a relay for other missions as soon as we can do so with confidence in spacecraft safety, likely in about one week. After that, we will resume science observations.”

NASA is optimistic that they can iron out whatever issues are leading to the spacecraft’s battery woes, but it’s not exactly shocking that the hardware is having problems when you consider its age. Launching in 2005, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbit was slated to have a two-year mission window which it completed with flying colors. Following that success, NASA has issues extended missions five times, allowing the orbiter to continue gathering and relaying a treasure trove of data about the planet. According to NASA, the MRO has delivered over 317 terabits of data thus far, which is more than all other Mars mission combined.

In just a couple of years, NASA is slated to launch its Mars 2020 mission which will feature the delivery of a new rover to the Red Planet. The rover will be a cutting-edge piece of scientific hardware capable of making advanced observations about the composition of the Martian surface.

Watch Overwatch’s bizarre Puppy Rumble live right now

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Blizzard is going big for the Overwatch Year of the Dog celebration. Not only has the game rolled out new seasonal skins and a new game mode complete with brand-new map, the company is also hosting some kind of Overwatch-themed puppy derby.

We don’t know exactly what to expect, but based on the teaser trailer, cute dogs in Overwatch costumes doing cute things for the camera is a pretty safe bet. Tune in below at 6PM ET/3PM PT to find out.

The event will be streamed live on Twitch, and we’ve embedded the channel below for your easy viewing pleasure.

The Lunar New Year event is live right now on

PC, PS4, and Xbox One, bringing with it a handful of new legendary skins and the first-ever dedicated Capture The Flag map.

The new skins are for Pharah, Widowmaker, Genji, McCree, Mercy, and Zarya. There are also new Victory poses, Highlight intros and Emotes for many of those characters.

The biggest change for this event, however, is the introduction of a new Capture the Flag map, and Competitive Capture the Flag. The Overwatch team has tweaked the game-mode a little to make it more fun and less likely to end in a draw, with the hope of making Capture the Flag a more permanent fixture in Arcade.

The full patch notes are below:

PATCH HIGHLIGHTS

New Seasonal Event: Lunar New Year 2018

Get ready to ring in the Year of the Dog!

This year, we’re celebrating Lunar New Year with over 50 new seasonal items including legendary skins like Red Phoenix (Zhu Que) Mercy, Black Tortoise (Xuan Wu) Zarya, White Tiger (Bai Hu) Genji, and Black Lily Widowmaker. Experience our updates to our Capture the Flag mode—including a competitive Capture the Flag mode and Sudden Death—on a brand-new map, Ayutthaya.

To learn more about the new Capture the Flag changes, click here.

Hero Skin Selection

Fashion-forward heroes, rejoice! Players can now change hero skins with the “Select Skin” dropdown menu in the Hero Select screen at the start of a match. Show off your favorite unlocked skins when playing solo or coordinate with your friends to be the best dressed on the battlegrounds of tomorrow.

HERO UPDATES

Doomfist

  • Hand Cannon
    • Damage reduced from 11 to 6
    • Number of bullets fired increased from 6 to 11
    • Spread pattern made more consistent

Developer Comments: We have made a lot of progress with Doomfist’s movement in recent patches but we wanted to revisit his Hand Cannon. While the damage per bullet has been lowered, the number of bullets he fires per Hand Cannon shot has been increased which makes his overall damage output unchanged. Overall, these changes will help his Hand Cannon feel much more consistent.

Reaper

  • Death Blossom
    • Now fires at players behind barriers

Developer Comments: Previously, Reaper’s Death Blossom would target barriers but not the players hiding behind them. This change will make it more effective against shields and consistent with how other auto-target abilities work (e.g. McCree’s Deadeye, Symmetra’s Sentry Turret).

USER INTERFACE UPDATES

General

  • Matchmaking UI now displays the game mode players have queued for while waiting for players
  • Competitive Play leaver messages now display as a chat notification
  • The Hero Select screen now displays the game mode and map type

Heroes

  • Zenyatta’s Orb of Discord and Orb of Harmony will now display its target’s hero name

BUG FIXES

General

  • Fixed a bug that caused the mouse cursor to lose focus when using third party overlays (e.g. Discord)
  • Fixed an issue that sometimes prevented the Overwatch League scheduled matches of the day from loading

AI

  • Fixed a bug that prevented bots from voting on cards at the end of the match on Hybrid and Control maps

Competitive Play

  • Fixed a bug that prevented capture progress UI on Assault and Hybrid maps from displaying the correct team colors
  • Fixed a bug that allowed players to use the Hero Select screen during the loading screen at the start of a match

Deathmatch

  • Fixed a bug that prevented Widowmaker’s Infra-sight from functioning if it was used at the same time as another Widowmaker’s Infra-sight
  • Fixed a bug that caused Torbjörn to collide with his turret
  • Fixed a bug that caused Symmetra’s Sentry Turrets to continue targeting Junkrat’s Steel Trap after it was destroyed
  • Fixed a bug that prevented players from being able to stand on top of enemy players
  • Fixed a bug that allowed backfilling players to enter at 9th place during the match
  • Fixed a bug that caused targets hacked by Sombra to appear purple instead of red
  • Fixed a bug that caused the displayed hero on the lobby screen to appear in low detail when entering and exiting the Overwatch League screen

Game Browser and Custom Games

  • Fixed a bug that allowed players to summon infinite bots in custom games
  • Fixed a bug that caused D.Va to lose her Self-Destruct ultimate if she died out of her mech when the “Spawn with Ultimate Ready” option was enabled
  • Fixed a bug that caused the Victory voice line to play when a match ended in a draw while spectating

Heroes

  • Fixed a bug that caused airborne heroes to lose speed when changing direction
  • Fixed a bug that prevented golden weapon visual effects from displaying when an Overwatch League skin was equipped
  • Fixed a bug that caused heroes’ scoped shots to be calculated as misses in the accuracy statistic
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Ana’s Candy emote from displaying when viewing Kill Cam footage
  • Fixed a bug that caused Doomfist’s Rocket Punch to impact with D.Va’s mech before it materialized during her Call Mech ability
  • Fixed a bug that prevented kills caused by Doomfist’s Rocket Punch from receiving environmental kill credit
  • Fixed a bug that allowed D.Va’s mech to take damage before it materialized when using Call Mech
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Genji from sheathing his katana after using his Whirlwind emote
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Genji from using his Cyber-agility occasionally
  • Fixed a bug that caused Hanzo’s Dragonstrike to be calculated in the accuracy statistic
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Hanzo’s Wall Climb from activating occasionally
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Junkrat’s Concussive Mine from dealing damage if it was deflected by Genji
  • Fixed a bug that caused Mercy’s Caduceus Staff to disappear when using the Parasol emote
  • Fixed a bug that caused Mercy to fly in an unintended direction if she was stunned during Guardian Angel
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Mercy from destroying breakables she collides with in her flight path when using Guardian Angel
  • Fixed a bug that caused Mercy’s Valkyrie flight controls to not be precise when using Resurrect
  • Fixed a bug that caused Moira’s Biotic Grasp’s hits against barriers to be calculated as misses in her accuracy statistic
  • Fixed a bug that extended the cooldown of Orisa’s Halt! by one second if it successfully pulled an enemy
  • Fixed a bug that allowed Sombra to block Reaper’s Death Blossom if she used her Marioneta emote
  • Fixed a bug that caused Reinhardt to have a blank expression during his Toast victory pose
  • Fixed a bug that allowed projectiles to sometimes penetrate Reinhardt’s Barrier Field
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Reinhardt’s Charge bonus damage from being dealt if the target was sandwiched between a charging friendly Reinhardt and a charging enemy Reinhardt
  • Fixed a bug that caused Reinhardt to knock back a target instead of pinning them if he collided with an enemy at the start of his Charge
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Roadhog’s canister from appearing when viewing Overwatch League skins
  • Fixed a bug that caused Roadhog’s Chain Hook to clip the first-person camera when pulling in a target
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Sombra’s EMP from canceling an enemy Sombra’s Hack if it was in progress
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Symmetra’s Shield Generator from displaying in the Overwatch League skin preview screen
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Torbjörn’s lava ball from appearing in his Batter Up emote if his hammer was equipped
  • Fixed a bug that caused Widowmaker’s hair to not hang properly in the Hanging Around Highlight Intro when an Overwatch League skin was equipped
  • Fixed a bug that caused Widowmaker’s Venom Mine to use Overwatch League team colors when an Overwatch League skin was equipped
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Widowmaker’s Grappling Hook animation from playing when using the ability
  • Fixed a bug that caused Winston to lose some upward momentum when using Jump Pack off small inclines
  • Fixed a bug that caused Overwatch League team decals to disappear from Winston’s suit when he used Primal Rage
  • Fixed a bug that caused Zenyatta’s Discord Orb to fly in an odd direction if its target died before arriving

Hero Gallery

  • Fixed a bug that prevented players from purchasing non-hero sprays

Maps

  • Fixed a bug that caused some heroes to get stuck behind the lamp post directly outside the first Defender spawn room in Blizzard World
  • Fixed an issue that allowed players to reach unintended locations in Blizzard World
  • Fixed a bug that prevented D.Va’s Micro Missiles from passing through piñatas on Dorado
  • Fixed a bug that allowed Junkrat’s RIP-tire to travel under the trailer at the final point on Hollywood
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Moira’s Biotic Orbs from bouncing off the wooden pillars on Hollywood
  • Fixed a bug that caused the UI to show a fraction of a meter to go when reaching checkpoints on Escort and Assault/Escort maps

UI

  • Fixed a bug that prevented the hero portrait from displaying when watching Highlights when an Overwatch League skin was equipped
  • Fixed a bug that prevented player portraits from displaying during the Play of the Game, Kill Cam, Spectating, and Highlights

Watch a Japanese hypercar go from 0-60 MPH in 1.9 seconds

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For reasons that are mostly arbitrary, evaluating a car’s 0-60 MPH time has become the de facto standard for measuring a car’s raw acceleration. Indeed, the only reason we even pay attention to 0-60 times is because it’s the closest approximation to the 0-100 km/h standard used elsewhere in the world. Now you might be wondering: why was 100 km/h chosen as a benchmark in the first place? Well, who doesn’t like a nice round number.

Although there are a number of other performance metrics which are far more instructive than an impressive 0-60 time, that’s the reality the automotive world operates in. That’s the metric we all have a frame of reference for. That being the case, you’ll undoubtedly be impressed by the Aspark Owl, a hypercar out of Japan that can go from a full stop to 60 MPH in just 1.9 seconds.

While the next-gen Roadster Tesla unveiled a few months back can accelerate just as fast, the car isn’t set to be available until 2020. And given Tesla’s storied history of missing deadlines, it wouldn’t surprise us in the slightest if the release date gets pushed back to 2021.

The Owl, meanwhile, exists today and was recently captured on video doing its thing in what seems like a back lot of some random building. And while the Owl reportedly achieved the feat using racing tires, Aspark notes that future iterations will be able to hit that same impressive 0-60 time with street legal tires.

Motor Authority adds:

Powering the Owl is an electric motor at each axle delivering a combined 430 horsepower and 563 pound-feet of torque, which is sent to all four wheels. That might not seem like much but the Owl only weighs 1,874 pounds. Powering its electric motors is a combination of batteries and supercapacitors, said to be capable of delivering a range of 93 miles on a single charge.

If you’re interested in picking up an Aspark Owl for yourself, you better have extremely deep pockets. The company is planning to manufacture about 50 units at a planned price point of $4.4 million.

Your photos will look so much clearer thanks to this smartphone tripod, which is only $7 on Amazon

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It’s so weird how a tiny little gadget that costs next to nothing can end up being one of the best purchases you make. Such is the case with the AmazonBasics Lightweight Mini Tripod, a compact tripod that works with action cameras, web cams, and especially smartphones like the iPhone or any flagship Android phone you might be using. It has metal legs so it’s nice and sturdy, and you can also adjust the height and angle to perfectly frame your subject. Trust is, it’ll be the best $7 you spend this week.

Here are some highlights from the product page:

  • Mini tripod with adjustable-height metal legs and rubber feet
  • Compatible with small digital cameras (not DSLRs), GoPro devices, and smartphone adapters (not included); Works well for a webcam on your desk
  • Recommended max load weight is 1.1 lbs (0.5kg) for optimal performance
  • Small and lightweight for travel; extends from 4.76-inches to 7.5-inches
  • Mini ball head for 360-degree rotation and 90-degree tilt
  • Mini tripod with adjustable-height metal legs and rubber feet
  • Compatible with small digital cameras (not DSLRs), GoPro devices, and smartphone adapters (not included), Works well with most of the webcam on your desk

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Astro A50 Review Roundup

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The Astro A50 is a surround sound wireless headset that’s especially friendly toward consoles and boasts a sharp design – but how do these headphones really perform? Let’s take a look at what gamers and reviewers have had to say.

Features

The A50 provides Dolby 7.1 virtual surround sound, with a battery life of around 15 hours and a couple different options for headphone material for extra comfort. The headset does support line in connections for other types of audio, and provides audio software if you are tweaking settings carefully on a desktop. The construction is designed to be as light as possible.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Excellent surround sound
  • Wireless

Cons

  • Charging dock can be difficult to use
Astro A50 Dock

The A50 dock is a source of split opinions.

PC World

PC World liked the upgrade to the battery and the new charging system, but they weren’t convinced that a full dock was needed to charge the headset instead of a plug-in system that would have taken up less room. They were also uncertain if the excellent sound warranted such a high price in a market (around $250) that is becoming increasingly competitive with many lower cost options available.

“I also found myself leaving the A50 in a perpetual “On” state, thanks to a more invisible improvement: internal gyros. The previous A50 (and most wireless headsets) would automatically turn off if it didn’t detect any audio being played for a certain amount of time—say, five minutes. But the new A50 detects movement, so if you set the headset on a desk for 30 seconds it’ll automatically shut off. Lift it up and put it back on and by the time you’ve done that, it has probably paired back up with the base station and is ready to play audio again.”

Tom’s Guide

Tom’s Guide loved the surround sound that the Astro A50 can put out, and noted that the headset was surprisingly lightweight for all the features it provided, making it useful for long gaming sessions. The only downsides that the reviewer noted were that the mic was just okay at picking up your voice, and the sound management app could get a little confusing.

“The new Astro A50 is a perfect example of “If it ain’t broke, just make it a little bit better.” This premium wireless gaming headset retains the superbly comfy design and satisfying surround sound of its predecessor, while introducing the feature-rich Base Station and some neat software tools for casual gamers, streamers and competitors. It even has modular ear cups this time around. Although its microphone and companion app could use some improvement, the Astro A50 is still the best high-end wireless gaming headset you can buy.”

Amazon Users

Amazon users were mostly filled with praise for the headset and its sound quality, which apparently hit the sweet spot for buyers. However, many noted a common problem: It was tough to position the headset on the dock in the right manner for it to start charging, which soon became aggravating (having reviewed a few A50 models, we can say that this can be an issue at times).

“After having these for almost a month, I have not once experienced any of the problems people were saying they were having with the headset. I’m sure most people who have seen issues have had the headset for much longer than a month, so maybe it’s just a time thing, but I will happily update this post if I experience any of the issues. What I love about this headset Is that it is very comfortable. The cups don’t even touch my ears, the headband sits nicely on top of my head without any pains. The sound quality is amazing, and to my surprise, the mic quality really isn’t that bad.”

Bottom Line

The Astro A50 is a great headset with high ratings for sound and comfort…if you don’t mind dealing with the dock and the high price point.

Read Next: The Latest Gaming Headset Review

Astro A50 Review Roundup

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iOS 11.2.6 is available for download, and it fixes the major bug that’s been crashing iPhones

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Apple has released iOS 11.2.6 to everyone running iOS 11, one month after the last iOS 11 update. This edition appears to be purely a bug fix for the Teluga character bug, which caused messaging apps and iOS to crash.

The bug centers around one character from the Teluga language, a Central-Southern Dravidian dialect spoken in India by about 70 million people. Receiving the character will crash whatever messaging app sees the character, forcing you to force-close the app. If you reopen the app and the character is still there, it will crash the app again.

The bug will only crash the entire iPhone if a notification card or banner containing the character pops up on the device. If that happens, the Springboard software, which serves as the iOS app launcher, appears to crash, forcing you to reboot or reset your device in order to make it work again.

The bug affects most messaging apps, including iMessage, WhatsApp, Gmail, Outlook for iOS, or Facebook Messenger. Apple’s update notes confirms that the bug fix should be universal, so the Teluga character shouldn’t crash any apps or Springboard any more:

iOS 11.2.6 includes bug fixes for your iPhone or iPad. This update:

Fixes an issue where using certain character sequences could cause apps to crash

Fixes an issue where some third-party apps could fail to connect to external accessories

To apply the update, you need to be on a device already running iOS 11. You should also be connected to Wi-Fi, and be either connected to a charger or have greater than 50% battery life remaining. Assuming you’ve done all that, just go to Settings–>General–>Software Update, and your device should prompt you to download and install the update.

Jupiter’s Great Red Spot may be dying, and could disappear within our lifetimes

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With the exception of Saturn and its iconic rings, Jupiter is probably the most recognizable planet in our Solar System. Its long, thick stripes are unlike anything else in our little celestial neighborhood, but its the massive swirling storm called the Great Red Spot that really catches our eyes. It’s been raging for centuries, but that might be about to change, as scientists now believe that the storm is actually dying down, and could disappear entirely within a couple of decades.

The incredibly intense storm, which is large enough that it could swallow Earth whole, is being closely watched by NASA’s Juno spacecraft. Juno has been orbiting Jupiter for over six years, and in since arriving it’s made some stunning observations regarding the planet’s impressive weather patterns. The Great Red Spot is a result of powerful jet streams which spin in opposite directions, but they won’t be able to keep churning forever.

“In truth, the GRS has been shrinking for a long time,” Glenn Orton of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory told Business Insider. The storm was once as large as four times the diameter of Earth, but more recent observations have shown that it’s rapidly losing steam. “Now it’s something like 13 degrees wide in longitude and only 1.3 times the size of the Earth,” Orton says. “Nothing lasts forever.”

Late last year, Juno revealed some surprising information about the huge storm, including how deep into the planet it goes. The data showed that the storm is up to 100 times deeper than Earth’s oceans, and the base of the storm is significantly hotter than the rapidly-moving winds we see in Jupiter’s upper atmosphere. Researchers still don’t know many of the specifics of what drives the storm, but it’s obvious that it’s beginning to breath its dying gasps. Within the next decade or two, the storm is likely to die out completely.

Juno makes its observations during what are known as “science passes,” which is just a fancy way of saying that all of its instruments are up and running as it cruises around the planet. The spacecraft’s current planned mission is slated to wrap up in less than a year, but if it’s still returning valuable data there’s a good chance that it will get an extended mission which will keep it up and running for a while longer.

Honor 9 Lite comes with free Bluetooth earphones in the UK

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While Samsung is offering a free pair of Gear IconX truly wireless headphones with a purchase of a Galaxy Note8 or S8 in the US, Huawei’s online-first sub-brand Honor is doing a similar thing in the UK.

Over there, when you buy an Honor 9 Lite smartphone from the company’s official online store, you will receive a pair of Bluetooth wireless earphones for free. They are apparently worth £69.99 on their own, and that makes this a pretty good deal considering that the Honor 9 Lite itself will only set you back a cool £199.99.

The phone can be bought in black or blue, and the headphones are available in the same colors. Interestingly, you can mix and match if you’re so inclined. The earbuds sport the traditional design of being connected by a single wire, unlike Samsung’s aforementioned truly wireless pair. Honor’s Sport Bluetooth Earphones are IP52 rated for dust and sweat resistance, and you should allegedly get 11 hours of music playback from them, as well as more than 10 days of standby.

Source | Via

Geek Presidents’ Day Deals: Dell PCs, 4K TVs, and more

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Today is Presidents’ Day, and that means big savings on loads of products. If you’re looking for a new computer, 4K television, quad-copter, or some other new electronic gear, you’re bound to find something great at the perfect price point without even having to leave your home.

Inspiron 15 7000

Featured Deals

Doorbuster Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Intel Core i5-7300HQ Quad 15.6-inch 1080p IPS Gaming Laptop with 6GB GTX 1060 GPU for $799.99 at Dell Home (List price: $1099).

Doorbuster Dell S2317HWi 23-inch Wireless Monitor with Smartphone Charging Stand and $100 Dell Gift Card for $179.99 at Dell Home (List price: $199.99).

NEW Dell Inspiron 13 7000 Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-Core 13.3-inch 1080p Touch Laptop with 256GB SSD (only 3.1lbs) for $729.99 at Dell Home (List price: $999.99).

NEW Dell PowerEdge T30 Intel Xeon E3-1225v5 Quad-core Mini Tower Server for $299 at Dell SB (Coupon code: DB299T30 – List price: $708).

Samsung UN55MU6300 55-inch 4K HDR-Pro Smart TV and $250 Dell Gift Card for $599.99 at Dell Home (List price: $799.99).

Alienware Aurora Intel Core i7-8700 6-Core Gaming Desktop with 8GB GTX 1070 GPU for $1299.99 at Dell Home (List price: $1699.99).

NEW Samsung 960 EVO 500GB NVMe m.2 Internal SSD for $199.99 at Amazon (List price: $249.99).

4K Apple TV Included with Prepaid 3 Months of DIRECTV NOW for $$35/month at DIRECTV (Apple TV lists for $179).

Black Friday price: Zinus 12-inch Queen Size Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress for $179 at Amazon (List price: $289).

Doorbuster: Bose SoundSport In-Ear Headphones (Green) for $49.99 at Dell Home (List price: $99).

$50 price drop: Dell XPS 13 8th-gen Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-core 13.3-inch 1080p Ultra-thin Laptop with 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD for $949.99 at Dell Home (Coupon code: 50OFF499 – List price: $1299.99).

Today Only: Panasonic ES-LA63-S Arc4 4-Blade We/Dry Electric Razor for $79.99 at Amazon (List price: $119.99).

NEW Deik Smart Self-Charging Robot Vacuum Cleaner with Mopping for $161.49 at Amazon (Coupon code: GEAPBE5D – List price: $189.99).

Lenovo Presidents Day ThinkPad Sale: Up to 30% off X1 Carbon, T470s, T470 (Coupon code: THINKPADSALE).

Samsung Gear S3 Frontier Smartwatch with Built-in GPS for $269.99 at Amazon (List price: $349.99).

TENKER Q5 800×480 1500-Lumens LED HDMI Mini Projector for $34.99 at Amazon (Coupon code: SV2ZDJND – List price: $69.99).

McAfee President’s Day Sale: McAfee 2018 Total Protection Software (10 Devices) for $29.99 (List price: $99.99).

New Coupon: Udemy President’s Day Sale: $9.99 Online Courses on Data, Coding, Developments, Business and Marketing (Coupon code: FBY1010).

Three 4K Blu-Rays for $50 [Batman Trilogy, Interstellar, Inception and more] for $49.99 at Amazon (List price: $74.97).

iPad Air

Laptop and Desktop Computers

Apple iPad Air 32GB 9.7-inch Tablet (Refurb) for $199.99 at PCMag Shop (List price: $299.99).

Dell Latitude 13 7000 Intel m7 13.3-inch 3200×1800 Touch Laptop with 256GB SSD, 8GB RAM (Refurb with 2yr Dell Warranty) for $749 at PCMag Shop (Coupon code: 7370250OFF – List price: $999).

Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2-inch 2560×1600 Octa-Core 32GB Tablet for $399 at PCMag Shop (Coupon code: NOTEPRO12100OFF – List price: $499).

Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Intel Core i5-7300HQ Quad 15.6-inch 1080p IPS Gaming Laptop with 6GB GTX 1060 GPU for $799.99 at Dell Home (List price: $1099).

Alienware Aurora Intel Core i7-8700 6-Core Gaming Desktop with 8GB GTX 1070 GPU for $1299.99 at Dell Home (List price: $1699.99).

Lenovo Ideapad 720s Intel Core i7-8550U Quad 13-inch 3840×2160 4K IPS Laptop with 8GB RAM, 512GB SSD for $949.99 at Lenovo (Coupon code: SAVEXTRA5 – List price: $1499.99).

Dell XPS 13 8th-gen Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-core 13.3-inch 1080p Ultra-thin Laptop with 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD for $949.99 at Dell Home (Coupon code: 50OFF499 – List price: $1299.99).

Dell Inspiron 13 7000 Intel Core i7-8550U Quad-Core 13.3-inch 1080p Touch Laptop with 256GB SSD (only 3.1lbs) for $729.99 at Dell Home (List price: $999.99).

Dell XPS 15 Intel Core i7-7700HQ Quad-Core 15.6-inch 1080p Laptop with 512GB SSD and 16GB RAM for $1449.99 at Dell (Coupon code: 50OFF699 – List price: $1749.99).

New Dell Inspiron 5680 Intel Core i7-8700 Hexa-core Gaming Desktop with GeForce GTX 1060 3GB GPU for $999.99 at Dell (List price: $1149.99).

Dell OptiPlex 3050 Intel Core i5-7500 Quad-Core Kaby Lake Win10 Pro SFF Desktop for $529 at Dell (List price: $898.57).

Dell PowerEdge T30 Intel Xeon E3-1225v5 Quad-core Mini Tower Server for $299 at Dell (List price: $708).

Dell XPS Tower Intel Core i7-6700 Quad-Core Win10 Pro Desktop with 16GB RAM, AMD RX560 for $669.99 at Dell (Coupon code: XPS669 – List price: $1129.99).

Dell Latitude 13 7000 Intel m7 13.3-inch 3200×1800 Touch Laptop with 256GB SSD, 8GB RAM (Refurb with 2yr Dell Warranty) for $749 at PCMag Shop (Coupon code: 7370250OFF – List price: $999).

Lenovo Presidents Day ThinkPad Sale: Up to 30% off X1 Carbon, T470s, T470 (Coupon code: THINKPADSALE).

Lenovo Ideapad 720s Intel Core i7-8550U Quad 13-inch 3840×2160 4K IPS Laptop with 8GB RAM, 512GB SSD for $949.99 at Lenovo (Coupon code: SAVEXTRA5 – List price: $1499.99).

Dell S2317HWi 23-inch Wireless Monitor with Smartphone Charging Stand and $100 Dell Gift Card for $179.99 at Dell Home (List price: $199.99).

McAfee President’s Day Sale: McAfee 2018 Total Protection Software (10 Devices) for $29.99 (List price: $99.99).

More Laptops and Desktop PC Deals here.

Samsung 55

HDTVs and Home Entertainment

HOT and NEW Samsung UN55MU6300 55-inch 4K HDR-Pro Smart TV and $250 Dell Gift Card for $599.99 at Dell Home (List price: $799.99).

NEW Vizio E50-E1 4K LED HDTV and $125 Dell Gift Card for $399.99 at Dell Home (List price: $499.99).

65-inch Samsung UN65MU6500 Curved 4K Ultra Smart LED HDTV and $350 Dell Gift Card for $999.99 at Dell (List price: $1499.99).

65-inch Vizio P65-E1 4K 120Hz Native LED HDTV with 126-Dimming Zones, Dolby Vision with HDR 10 and $400 Dell Gift Card for $1399.99 at Dell (List price: $1699.99).

65-inch Vizio D65-E0 4K UHD Smart HDTV and $250 Dell Gift Card for $799.99 at Dell (List price: $899.99).

49-inch TCL 49S405 4K Roku Smart HDTV for $329.99 at Amazon (List price: $479.99).

More TV Deals here.

Samsung 960

Electronics and Components

NEW Samsung 960 EVO 500GB NVMe m.2 Internal SSD for $199.99 at Amazon (List price: $249.99).

NEW Samsung 860 EVO 2.5-inch 500GB Solid State Drive for $149 at Amazon (List price: $169).

Ring Pro 1080p Video Doorbell for $199 at Amazon (List price: $249).

DJI Phantom 4 Quadcopter with 4K Camera and 3-Axis Gimbal for $799 at Amazon (List price: $1199).

DJI Mavic Pro 4K Quadcopter for $838 at Amazon (List price: $999).

SEGWAY miniPRO Smart Self Balancing Transporter with 10.5″ Wheels (2018) for $349.99 at Amazon (List price: $549.99).

TENKER Q5 800×480 1500-Lumens LED HDMI Mini Projector for $34.99 at Amazon (Coupon code: SV2ZDJND – List price: $69.99).

8Bitdo N30 Arcade Stick for Nintendo Switch, PC, Mac and Android for $47.44 at Amazon (List price: $79.99).

$10 price drop: Bose QuietComfort 25 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones for $159.99 at Amazon (List price: $299).

AirMod Wireless Bluetooth Adapter for Bose QuietComfort 25 Headphones (Turns QC25 Wireless) for $69.99 at Amazon.

Ultimate Ears BOOM 2 Bluetooth Wireless Speaker (Phantom) for $89.99 at Dell (List price: $199.99).

Drocon Hacker Mini Quadcopter Drone with 720p HD Camera for $19.99 at Amazon (Coupon code: CHZ5CSXM – List price: $89.99).

AmazonBasics Pre-Charged AAA Rechargeable Batteries (8-Pack) for $9.49 at Amazon (List price: $11.99).

Raspberry Pi 3 Complete Starter Kit with Retro Gaming Case for $65.99 at Amazon (Coupon code: 45YOCHIQ – List price: $74.99).

Micron 2TB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5-inch Internal Solid State Drive for $384.99 at Amazon.

Anker Roav C2 1080p Dash Cam with Sony Sensor, Ambarella Chip, 3″ LCD for $50.80 at Amazon (List price: $119.99).

Yosoo 50-Mile Range Transparent HDTV Antenna for $6.99 at Amazon (Coupon code: Q4JZTPA8 – List price: $21.99).

More Electronics and Tech Deals here.

Essential Phone

Smartphones and Wearables

NEW Essential Phone 128GB Unlocked Smartphone for $449.99 at Amazon (List price: $699.99).

Samsung Gear S3 Frontier Smartwatch with Built-in GPS for $269.99 at Amazon (List price: $349.99).

Prime Exclusive: LG G6+ 128GB Quad-Core 5.7-inch 2560×1440 Unlocked Smartphone for $469.99 at Amazon (List price: $799.99).

More Electronics and Tech Deals here.

Deik

Tools and Home Improvement, Kitchen Gadgets, and more

Deik Smart Self-Charging Robot Vacuum Cleaner with Mopping for $161.49 at Amazon (Coupon code: GEAPBE5D – List price: $189.99).

Striker Adjustable Garage Parking Sensor for $22.48 at Amazon (List price: $29.99).

Instant Pot IP-DUO60 6-Quart 1000W Electric Pressure Cooker for $88.94 at Amazon (List price: $99.99).

Zinus 12″ Queen Size Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress for $179 at Amazon (List price: $289).

Back in stock: Autonomous SmartDesk Height Adjustable Motorized Standing Desk for $237.99 at Amazon (List price: $349.99).

Philips HF3520 Wake-Up Light with Colored Sunrise Simulation for $72.55 at Amazon (Clip $25 Coupon – List price: $139.99).

AncestryDNA: Genetic Testing DNA Ancestry Test Kit for $69 at Amazon (List price: $99).

23andMe Discove(RED) DNA Test (Health and Ancestry Personal Genetic Service) for $149 at Amazon (List price: $199).

LEGO NASA Apollo Saturn V Rocket Model (1969 Pieces) for $119.95 at Amazon.

LEGO Architecture Shanghai Building Kit (597-Piece) for $47.99 at Amazon (List price: $59.99).

TurboTax Deluxe 2017 State and Federal and eFile Tax Software and Bonus Quicken Starter for $39.86 at Amazon (List price: $59.99).

Autonomous SmartDesk Height Adjustable Motorized Standing Desk for $237.99 at Amazon (List price: $349.99).

For more great Presidents Day deals go to TechBargains.

QuickBooks President’s Day: Up to 70% off Booking Software with prices starting at $4/month at QuickBooks Online (List price: $15).

4K Apple TV Included with Prepaid 3 Months of DIRECTV NOW for $$35/month at DIRECTV (Typically List price: of $179 for AppleTV).

Udemy President’s Day Sale: $9.99 Online Courses (Coupon code: FYY1201).

Three 4K Blu-Rays for $50 [Batman Trilogy, Interstellar, Inception and more] for $49.99 at Amazon (List price: $74.97).

Silicon Valley's Corrupt Underbelly: It's Far Worse Than We Thought

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After addressing the topic of sexual harassment and misconduct in Silicon Valley last month, I finally got my hands on a copy of Brotopia, an eye-opening new book, and a lot of executives should be happy I did not pursue my career in law enforcement. Otherwise I would be working my butt off to get them off the streets behind bars.

Everyone connected to tech — especially investors, employees or customers of tech firms — should read this book. Specifically, for investors, it will give you insights into a level of extreme avoidable risk that has not been factored into the market — at least not yet.

If I were interested in developing a strategy either to ensure a Republican win in the mid-term elections or to move the center of tech to China, India, South Korea or Israel, this book would be invaluable.

That’s because it highlights how easily most of the men and some of the women in the book could be blackmailed (given the nature of China, North Korea and Russia, perhaps that’s already happening to some of them). That could be one of the reasons Russia’s fake news effort was so successful during the last election, and why its expected larger effort in the coming elections once again could succeed.

My perspective is not so much to analyze the book as it is to talk about the foundational elements and potentially devastating impact of the problems associated with power abuse at scale, combined with a power shift between men and women that these abuses have accelerated.

My product of the week is Brotopia, but rather than ending with comments on the book, I’ll use my reaction to it as the foundation of my analysis.

Rob Enderle's Product of the Week

I really want you folks to read the book, so this is more of a teaser than anything else. In its pages, you will a find story, which is not presented as uncommon, of an employee watching her boss orally and anally engaged with two partners. You will read about job interviews (with women) in strip clubs and how sex is being exchanged for deals at a massive scale. You’ll learn that the cheapest good lunch in San Francisco is in a strip club with benefits, regularly patronized by employees from zero tolerance companies.

Brotopia: Breaking Up the Boys' Club of Silicon Valley

You’ll read about justifications for sordid behavior that mostly comes down to “I have the power, so the rules don’t matter.” You also will find that even though men drive these things, some women have been turning them to their advantage.

The book is one of the best-referenced books I have ever read. It is an easy read, but you will find it deeply upsetting (assuming you are human), and it might motivate you to act. It is, however, light on what we should do about the problems, which is why that is my focus.

Read the book. It could save your job, protect your mental health (particularly if you avoid becoming a victim), and give you ideas about how to protect not only yourself but also the important women in your life.

Analyzing the Problem

Analysts look, or should look, at problems differently from others. When we are doing the job correctly, we are expected to ignore the outcomes of a problem and focus instead on the causes and dependencies, in order to estimate collateral damage from both the problem and any fix. The more senior of us are expected to come up with a viable solution. By “viable,” I mean something that is within the realm of possibility to execute.

Taking this objective view isn’t always easy. In this case, I found it hard to put aside my growing anger while ready Brotopia and found it increasingly hard to think of the perpetrators of the described abuses as anything but demons.

The likely reactions of those who learn about abuses is itself a problem. I personally have good impulse control, but last week’s shooting in Florida is a reminder that others don’t. I expect that if I were to find that my sister, nieces or wife had been abused in some of the ways this book spells out, my restraint might not be adequate. Consider this recent Olympics-connected incident. I doubt there are many fathers who wouldn’t do the same, though likely not in court.

Identifying the Causes

I’d place the primary causes of this bad behavior into four areas.

First, the perpetrators are people who had little power and an excessive focus on sex early in life. These people then accumulated power, some of them massive amounts, that they were neither prepared for or trained to wield.

Second, human resources organizations, which initially were created as a barrier to unions (as alternative advocates for employees), have evolved into weak compliance organizations. The result is that they are far better at covering up problems like this than they are at mitigating them. In fact, I’d argue that many have become enablers for abuse and harassment in large companies. VCs, where a significant amount of these abuses have been occurring, typically don’t have HR.

Third, unions don’t exist in the tech market, and women are not yet organized to respond to this threat collectively. This is like the way it was before the birth of unions, a time when male workers also were treated as cheap disposable assets.

Fourth, women have not yet realized or capitalized on the power they have. They often have flawed champions (politicians, attorneys, etc.) whose true motivations are questionable, and many continue to allow men to make critical decisions for them — for example, right to life vs. choice. Women have more buying and voting power than men do, and they could use it for devastating effect if they chose to. I expect we are closing in on either a trigger event or the identification of a trigger event.

Dependencies/Collateral Damage

The activities described in this book have been embraced by some of the most powerful individuals in the world. They are people who work at Tesla, SpaceX, Google, and a broad cross-section of the VCs. Other major power players are connected to this bad behavior in many ways.

An uncontrolled purge, kind of what has been happening in the entertainment industry, could be devastating to the technology industry — and particularly, Silicon Valley.

That collapse would shift billions of investments in technology out of Silicon Valley, California and the U.S., with a devastating impact on local, state and federal tax revenues. It would allow hostile governments with poor human rights reputations to point to the U.S. as their equal.

Shifts in customers — particularly government and major brand shifts away from the identified firms — would be massive. I’d place Oracle, given its model and culture, as the most at risk, followed by Google and Facebook.

Google once was linked tightly to President Obama, making it an ideal political target. Facebook’s risk is greater proximity to the Russian election-tampering probe and the other bad players, rather than any identified bad behavior by its people.

Both Google and Facebook already have been called out as likely targets by the incoming FTC chair, making them ideal examples for attack.

What this means is that if corrective action were taken in an uncontrolled fashion, the collateral damage in terms of jobs, income and California/U.S. revenues would be catastrophic.

My Recommendations

HR and internal audit in firms, both in the tech industry and buying from it, need to be staffed up and missioned both to mitigate or eliminate the behavior and to protect the firm’s assets. This means that executives, board members and employees who actively have been taking part in abusing women employees and customers need to be identified and terminated for cause.

In addition, buying agents who are cutting deals in exchange for sex or any other bribe need to be identified, the contracts reviewed, vendor penalties assessed, and either/or both terminated and charged criminally for their behavior. Anti-drug polices, fraternization policies and enforcement methods need to be reviewed and strengthened as needed.

Crisis teams need to be ramped up, prepared for the related required disclosures, and funded to deal with the coming image and brand damage at scale. This is not just for the tech companies, because vendors and customers that have major recognized brands will be dragged into the resulting press crapstorm through employees involved with any of sex parties or sex for business sales efforts.

I also would expect hosts of revealing pictures (cellphones are common and 360-degree cameras growing) to drive the entry of major legal players, like Gloria Allred, targeting where the pockets are deep and legal defense is light. VCs would be the easiest targets, but a major brand like Apple, Google or Facebook also would be very attractive.

Boards must get it on the record that executives have been questioned about this behavior and reminded that it would result in immediate termination. They must terminate the executives who have indulged in it. Recall that a considerably smaller incident critically damaged HP.

Women either should exit the industry or formally organize. However, this should be done in a measured fashion, and the effort — for lack of a better term, “union of women” — should be led by a qualified person who wouldn’t use it as a stepping stone to becoming U.S. president (because that would introduce conflicts). I’d recommend starting with this as a foundational model.

As a side note, that may make the woman leading this the best actual candidate, because she could use that position to fix the problem. (I believe it is better to have a politician who is using the job to fix a problem like this, over one who is using the problem to get the job.)

Wrapping Up: Peter Thiel – Sodom and Gomorrah

As I was writing this, thanks to Peter Thiel’s announcement, one other recommendation came up. I am far from religious, but when reading the book, the story of Sodom and Gomorrah came to mind. In that story, Lot got out and because he did not look back, he survived.

I think Peter Thiel’s decision to move out of Silicon Valley puts him in the role of Lot, suggesting that the final recommendation is to get your headquarters and brand out of Silicon Valley before this all blows up.

While it may be an explosion seemingly in slow motion at the moment (the book highlights an impressive number of past terminations), all it will take is an underage girl claiming rape against a high-profile executive, an abused woman’s spouse/father/son going postal on her abuser, or a death to cover up a rape, to trigger a catastrophic outcome for Silicon Valley and everyone in it.

Every sex party and incident of abuse is effectively Russian Roulette — and based on the book, that gun is attempting to fire far more than once a day.

One final thought: Even if you take the abuse and illegal drugs out of this, the level of absolute stupidity behind this abusive behavior is unprecedented. Do you really want your money, your firm’s future, and your brand connected to this lack of brain power?

Would you rather, when this goes, talk about how you anticipated and addressed the problem, or look like an idiot for not seeing it going on seemingly in front of your face? This could blow this week or next decade, but when it finally goes, it likely will go big.

My mother died so that I could live. Other women raised me — they cared for me when I could not care for myself. I wouldn’t be where I am if it weren’t for my wife, and I could do no less than stand with women on this. To others of my sex, we too need to stand up and be counted.

This abusive behavior must end.


Rob Enderle has been an ECT News Network columnist since 2003. His areas of interest include AI, autonomous driving, drones, personal technology, emerging technology, regulation, litigation, M&E, and technology in politics. He has undergrad degrees in merchandising and manpower management, and an MBA in human resources, marketing and computer science. He is also a certified management accountant. Enderle currently is president and principal analyst of the Enderle Group, a consultancy that serves the technology industry. He formerly served as a senior research fellow at Giga Information Group and Forrester. Email Rob.