TIME viral

This Video Captures Everything Wrong With Overblown Tech Hype

Ever heard of the MyBook?

Forget about the Apple Watch. What about the MyBook?

Never heard of it? In spoof video above, Twitter co-founder Biz Stone drops hints at, as an interviewer describes it, a “secret tablet-sized object you had in your hand at Disrupt?”

“My book?” Stone asks.

“The MyBook!” And that’s all it takes for the fanboys to being hyping up the most mysterious and disruptive product on the market.

Influential angel investor Ron Conway is behind the funny video launching One City, an initiative that asks tech companies to invest in their own communities. This pitch-perfect spoof touts a program that partners companies with schools, and it hilariously captures the zeitgeist surrounding tech products and begs the question: “What if schools were the next big thing in tech?”

 

TIME Companies

L’Oreal Halts Business Travel to Hong Kong Amid Protests

Hong Kong has been embroiled in protests this week

The cosmetics company L’Oreal said Tuesday that it’s suspending all business travel to Hong Kong amid pro-democracy demonstrations that have brought the city to a standstill, in a troubling sign for the global hub of business and finance.

The company has “a ban on business travel to Hong Kong until October 6,” a spokesperson told AFP.

Hong Kong has been embroiled in protests this week as pro-democracy activists seek concessions from Beijing.

[AFP]

TIME Advertising

This ‘Bra Cam’ Shows How Often Women’s Breasts Get Ogled

Nestlé created video in honor of October's Breast Cancer Awareness month

In honor of October’s Breast Cancer Awareness month, Nestlé FITNESS launched a campaign encouraging women to #CheckYourSelfie.

How did the company drill the message home? By chronicling how often people ogle women’s breasts by implanting a camera in a bra. And it turns out that the volunteer’s breasts get checked out a lot, by men, women, babies, and dogs, alike.

To be fair, though, the woman in the video is walking around with a bright pink bra sticking out of her shirt, which is likely to draw attention — although far be it from us to knock a breast cancer awareness campaign.

This isn’t Nestlé’s first go at smart-bra innovation. In 2013, the company created a bra that tweets every time it gets unclasped:

We can only imagine what undergarment-related promotions 2015 will hold.

TIME movies

There Will Be a Tetris Movie, and it Will Be ‘Epic’

Game Boy Game "Tetris"
The cover of Nintendo Game Boy game, "Tetris." Boston Globe—Boston Globe via Getty Images

"What you [will] see in Tetris is the teeny tip of an iceberg that has intergalactic significance."

Are you sitting down? Please, tell me you’re sitting down. Because, the Wall Street Journal reports, Tetris will be coming to a theater near you.

No, not for a World Cup competition — the company is determined to turn the classic blockbusting game into a spectator sport — but for a movie. That’s right, there is going to be a Tetris movie. And according to Threshold Entertainment CEO Larry Kasanoff, “It’s a very big, epic sic-fi movie.”

While we don’t know what to expect, Kasanoff, who turned Mortal Kombat into a film in 1995, told the WSJ what we shouldn’t expect. “This isn’t a movie with a bunch of lines running around the page,” he said. “We’re not giving feet to the geometric shapes . . . What you [will] see in Tetris is the teeny tip of an iceberg that has intergalactic significance.”

May this please open the door for other spinoffs of Marble Madness and Pong, too. Blip. Blip. Bloop.

[WSJ]

TIME animals

Dolphins Are Apparently Attracted to Magnets

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Dolphin in aquarium of Barcelona vdorse—Getty Images/Flickr RF

Where does this fit into their plot for world domination?

According to a French study released Monday, dolphins are attracted to magnets. Platonically, of course.

To find out if dolphins are magnetosensitive—or able to sense Earth’s magnetic field—researchers tested how six bottleneck dolphins swimming freely independently reacted to barrels containing both magnetized and demagnetized blocks.

Dolphins approached the device with shorter latency when it contained a strongly magnetized neodymium block compared to a control demagnetized block that was identical in form and density and therefore undistinguishable with echolocation. We conclude that dolphins are able to discriminate the two stimuli on the basis of their magnetic properties, a prerequisite for magnetoreception-based navigation.

If the findings hold up to scrutiny, it would be a momentous discovery. Although many animals are suspected to orient themselves using the Earth’s magnetic pull, there’s precious little proof that this is the case. Researchers from Baylor College of Medicine concluded in 2012 that pigeons have magnetosensitive GPS cells in their brains.

We don’t quite know where this fits into dolphins’ plot to take over the world, but now that they might be working with the pigeons, we are utterly terrified.

TIME NFL

NFL Under Fire for Penalizing Muslim Player After End Zone Prayer

He was handed a 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct

The NFL sparked yet more outrage Monday after appearing to penalize Kansas City Chiefs player Husain Abdullah, a devout Muslim, for kneeling on the ground in the end zone to praise God after scoring the second touchdown of his career.

This post-TD reaction was deemed unsportsmanlike conduct for excessive celebration and resulted in a 15-yard penalty:

The reaction from Abdullah’s brother and agent indicated this was indeed a moment of prayer:

Which, according to former VP of Officiating at the NFL Mike Pereira in a 2013 tweet, is not the intent of the rule against going to the ground:

In a 2009 interview, Pereira said that he didn’t want to penalize prayer for fear of getting “struck by lightning.”

Fans took to Twitter to denounce the call, which has incited the creation of various memes showing what prayer is deemed acceptable and what is penalized:

But Abdullah himself said it was likely his slide across the end zone that had provoked the penalty call, and not his impromptu prayer. “I got a little too excited,” he told local media. “The slide before it, I’m pretty sure that did it.”

The Chiefs ended up beating the Patriots 41-14.

TIME Crime

Arkansas Police Find Beverly Carter’s Body in Shallow Grave

Local real estate agent's disappearance last week sparked massive search

Arkansas police discovered the body of Beverly Carter, a real estate agent who went missing after showing a property last week, in a roadside shallow grave close to midnight Tuesday. Arron Lewis, 33, admitted to kidnapping Carter after 12 hours of police questioning on Monday, but would not reveal where she was last. Lewis was admitted to a hospital due to an alleged vehicle accident Sunday. He was arrested the following day and now faces capital murder charges, a spokesman for the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office said. Carter, 49, was reported missing by her husband Thursday when she didn’t come home that night. More than 200 volunteers helped search for her body.

Read more here.

 

TIME Social Media

Anger Abounds Over Lena Dunham’s Book Tour Acts Not Getting Paid

But for different reasons

Lena Dunham has long advocated for struggling artists — publicly complaining about rising rents pushing the creative class out of Manhattan last year, for instance. So it was surprising to read in the New York Times that within Dunham’s “literary circus” or “roving Burning Man festival” of a book tour to promote her hot-off-the-presses Not That Kind of Girl, that the seven opening acts performing at her 11-city tour will be “performing free of charge.”

Not only that, but there was desperate competition for the unpaid gig:

Nearly 600 people responded to an open call for video auditions on her website, including a sand artist, a ukulele player, a cappella singers, gymnasts, performance artists and stand-up comics, even some exceptionally charismatic babies.

After Gawker’s Hamilton Nolan pointed out, however, that Dunham earns an estimated $6 million a year, with her book advance $3.6 million alone and her book tour revenue around $304,000 — people immediately took their furious indignation to Twitter. And the Twitter-firestorm Monday won, prompting Dunham to share the wealth.

Here’s how things went down. First, many people displayed anger at Dunham, personally, for not paying participating artists:

Others wondered why Dunham, rather than her publisher Random House, was getting the blame:

Some questioned fans’ needs to constantly defend the star:

Others were wary of people who take any opportunity to bash the polarizing figure:

At first, Dunham didn’t respond directly to the controversy. Although she did riff on a quasi-relevant Jay-Z lyric, so there’s that:

When she participated in an iBooks Twitter interview later Monday, she steered clear of questions related to the unpaid artists (she also evaded queries about the Bill Murray pajama top she was wearing).

Shortly thereafter, however, Dunham announced that the artists would now be financially rewarded for their service:

And then she bashed Gawker for good measure:

And that just about sums things up:

Random House did not respond to comment about the kerfuffle.

TIME Music

Like Many Classic Songs, Fergie’s New Single Is Just a List of Random Cities

Fergie Duhamel Promotes Fergie Footwear At Macy's At The Fashion Show Mall
Singer Fergie Duhamel appears at Macy's at the Fashion Show Ethan Miller—Getty Images

So many cities — just three minutes

Fergie released her first single in six years Monday, and the song, called “L.A. LOVE (La La),” employs one of our favorite musical tropes of all time: It’s a pop song that lists off as many random city names it can in approximately three minutes’ time. A beloved but often unheralded genre, it’s long overdue for some recognition.

The American populace as a whole might have difficulties identifying important locations on maps, but not pop stars. And just as Coldplay schooled us in science, Brian McKnight in math, Gwen Stefani in spelling (B-A-N-A-N-A-S!), Barenaked Ladies in history and, of course, Olivia Newton John in physical education, it’s now time to study abroad.

Here are songs that celebrate artists’ illustrious travel itineraries:

Fergie, “L.A. LOVE (La La)”

As the title implies, we begin in California — “Hollywood to the slums,” if we are being specific. Then “like a gnat on a jet,” (because what self respecting insect flies commercial?), we head to New York to London to Brazil to Quebec to Russia to Venice.

Fergie’s travel itinerary is nonsensical. This lady doesn’t care how big her carbon footprint is! In order, we travel with her to: Brooklyn, Hacienda, Vegas, Rio, Tokyo, “Down Under,” Miami, Jamaica, Atlanta, Texas, back to Miami and back to London and Jamaica, then to France, L.A., Moscow, Espana, Kingston, San Diego, Chi-town, Germany, La Puente, Ibiza, LA, Amsterdam, Frisco, Switzerland, Jo’burg, Mexico, Stockholm, back to Jamaica, and back to L.A. (La la).

Jennifer Lopez, “On the Floor”

Artists love “La la la-ing” around the world. J.Lo danced the night away in “Brazil, Morocco, London to Ibiza, straight to LA, New York, Vegas to Africa.”

Johnny Cash, “I’ve Been Everywhere”

Johnny Cash, on the other hand, leans more towards Oskaloosa than Ibiza. More specifically:

Boston, Charleston, Dayton, Louisiana,
Washington, Houston, Kingston, Texarkana,
Monterey, Faraday, Santa Fe, Tallapoosa,
Glen Rock, Black Rock, Little Rock, Oskaloosa,
Tennessee to Tennesse Chicopee, Spirit Lake,
Grand Lake, Devils Lake, Crater Lake, for Pete’s sake.

For Pete’s sake, indeed!

Ludacris, “Pimpin’ All Over the World”

But not all musicians aimlessly wander the globe. When customs officers ask Ludacris about the reason for his visit, he has but one answer: Pimpin. He pimps in the Virgin Islands, Miami, Hawaii, Madriga, and, of course, Howard University, because his pimping styles lean towards the well-educated lady.

Ludacris, “Area Codes”

The “list off locations” genre appears to be one of Luda’s favorites. He even boasts of memorizing the various numbers of his “hoes in different area codes.” Ludacris has a lot of fun with rhymes in this one:

I bang c*ck in Bangkok
Can’t stop, I turn and hit the same spot
Think not, I’m the thrilla in Manilla,
Schlong in Hong Kong

Beach Boys, “California Girls”

Really, Ludacris is just perfecting a genre that the Beach Boys toyed with in 1965. Although the Beach Boys rattled off regions — oh, those Northern girls with the way they kiss! — instead of specific city names, they still deserve recognition for their contributions to the genre.

Lupe Fiasco, “Paris, Tokyo”

Lupe Fiasco, on the other hand, travels in the name of monogamy. He sings, “Let’s go to sleep in Paris, and wake up in Tokyo. Have a dream in New Orleans, fall in love in Chicago, maybe. Wherever I go she goes.”

Nelly, “Country Grammar”

Nelly shimmies his cocoa whats “From Texas back up to Indiana, Chi-Town, K.C. Motown to Alabama, L.A., New York Yankee n—-s to Hotlanta.”

Lil’ Kim, “Lighters Up”

This song genre can prove unifying. Lil’ Kim, for example, wants people from L.A, V.A., Texas, and so on to “put ya lighters up” in solidarity.

Sir Mix-A-Lot, “Jump On It”

Sir Mix-A-Lot wants the people of Denver, Columbus, St. Louis and Tacoma to “jump on it, jump on it, jump on it.” (Consider it jumped on).

DJ Khaled, “We Takin Over”

Other rappers rattle off city names as potential future conquests on the battlefield. DJ Khaled, for example, is planning a takeover “from down in Miami where it warm in the winter, on up to Minnesota where it storm in the winter.”

Boyz II Men, “All Around the World”

And finally, Boyz II Men. Let’s be honest — do people actually remember any of the lyrics past “Houston, Phoenix, Carolina…”?

TIME Family

CEO of Trillion-Dollar Company Resigned After His Daughter Told Him How Much He Has Missed

Key Speakers At The Bretton Woods Committee International Council Meeting
Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic advisor at Allianz SE, speaks during the 31st Annual Meeting of the Bretton Woods Committee at the World Bank Bloomberg—Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former PIMCO CEO Mohamed El-Erian's daughter made him a list of all the milestones he had missed

Updated Sept. 29, 6:12 pm

A 22-point list written by his 10-year-old daughter was all it took to change the trajectory of Mohamed El-Erian’s life, the former CEO says.

In January, El-Erian made headlines for announcing his resignation as chief executive officer of trillion-dollar investment fund PIMCO in January. In an article for Worth this summer, which has recently gone viral, El-Erian explains that he decided to step down after his daughter listed out the many milestones he had missed in her life.

When El-Erian asked his child why she wasn’t listening to him when he asked her to brush her teeth, she gave him a list of 22 things he had missed (from first soccer matches to Halloween parades) because of work.

“Talk about a wake-up call,” El-Erian writes. “I felt awful and got defensive: I had a good excuse for each missed event! Travel, important meetings, an urgent phone call, sudden to-dos… But it dawned on me that I was missing an infinitely more important point.”

Family may not have been the sole factor in his resignation, however; at least one report at the time suggested El-Erian’s departure might also have been motivated by an alleged falling-out with PIMCO co-founder Bill Gross, who left the company Friday.

But whatever El-Erian’s actual reason for leaving, his blog post still struck a nerve. While discussion of work-life balance is often discussed with women in the C-Suite, men are rarely asked whether or not they “have it all.”

But the conversation is now opening up. And this is largely because men are speaking out. For example, former CEO of MongoDB Max Schireson wrote a popular blog post about his decisions to step down from his position after he realized how much he was missing in his children’s lives.

A recent TIME article asked 7 C-Suite dads, many of whom were CEOs, to reflect on their struggles to maintain a strong work and family life. Intuit CEO Brad Smith recalled leaving his wife and newborn daughters the day after both of them were born for work trips. Since then he has learned that there are “crystal” and “rubber” moments — while you can bounce back from missing a few occasions, the crystal moments (graduations, weddings, births) should never be dropped.

Since resigning, El-Erian now manages “a portfolio of part time jobs” that provides more flexibility. (Meanwhile his former firm, PIMCO has run into some troubled waters.)

“I now alternate with my wife in waking up our daughter every morning, preparing her breakfast and driving her to school,” he said. “I’m also around much more often to pick her up after school and take her to activities. She and I are doing a lot of wonderful talking and sharing. We’ve even planned a holiday together, just the two of us.”

Read more:

CEO Dads Open Up About Balancing Fatherhood and Work

 

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