TIME cybersecurity

This Is the Most Shocking Document in the Entire Sony Hack Leak

Sony Hack
A logo of Japan's Sony Corporation is displayed at its headquarters in Tokyo on May 14, 2014. Kazuhiro Nogi—AFP/Getty Images

It's not sexy, but it shows how bad things really are

The hacking of vast amounts of internal Sony data continues to generate headlines. On Dec. 8, the aliases of nearly a dozen Hollywood celebrities were leaked. That is in addition to unreleased films, employee salaries, scripts, and other sensitive documents spilling out online. The hackers responsible are reportedly making increasingly threatening demands on the company.

The episode is likely to continue given the sheer volume of data obtained. And that may be the most significant aspect of the leak itself. According to security expert Brian Krebs, the scope of the breach is enormous:

According to multiple sources, the intruders also stole more than 25 gigabytes of sensitive data on tens of thousands of Sony employees, including Social Security numbers, medical and salary information. What’s more, it’s beginning to look like the attackers may have destroyed data on an unknown number of internal Sony systems. Several files being traded on torrent networks seen by this author include a global Sony employee list, a Microsoft Excel file that includes the name, location, employee ID, network username, base salary and date of birth for more than 6,800 individuals.

To get a sense of the size, consider this filetree posted by Krebs, included in the leaked data. It’s not juicy like a celebrity’s secret code name or the musing of Sony employees about Adam Sandler’s career. But this mere skeleton of some of the information stolen is shocking in its scope.

Read More: The 7 Most Outrageous Things We Learned From the Sony Hack

Sony Filetree
Brian Krebs
TIME Video Games

Here’s What the Most Jaw-Dropping Game of 2015 Looks Like Up Close

The procedurally generated space exploration game No Man's Sky looks amazing

UK-based Hello Games released another trailer for its highly-anticipated upcoming PC and PS4 title, No Man’s Sky. The game, slated for a 2015 release, is a procedurally generated space exploration game with stunning visuals. In other words, players will be able to explore planets and solar systems that are randomly generated. The results continue to look promising; here’s a closer look.

No Man's Sky Hello Games No Man's Sky Hello Games No Man's Sky Hello Games No Man's Sky Hello Games No Man's Sky Hello Games

TIME Recaps

The Walking Dead Watch: ‘Crossed’

Walkers - The Walking Dead _ Season 5, Gallery - Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC
"Who's bad?" Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC—© AMC Film Holdings LLC.

Things go all fubar before the mid-season finale. Plus, watch for extremely melted zombies

“Crossed,” the seventh episode of the fifth season of AMC’s The Walking Dead, might as well have been titled “Aftermath.” Nearly all the show’s characters find themselves reeling from the multiple denouements in last week’s episode, “Consumed.” All of them are more or less groping to find the boundaries of morality, the show’s most consistent theme.

The episode begins with the rage of Sasha, the latest of our unmerry band to have been pushed beyond the edge. Still distraught over the loss of her boyfriend Bob, she is taking it out on a church pew with an ax while the rest of the group fortifies the abbey in preparation for a standoff to come. The organ pipes are becoming battlements, the kneelers deadbolts. Gabriel, the milquetoast priest with qualms about killing the undead, looks around and asks worriedly, “Are you going to take the cross too?” “If we need it,” Daryl replies, implying it has little value beyond its physical utility.

This augurs the moral searching of the other characters throughout the episode. In a world where the clergy is futile and religious icons are only as good as the literal material they’re made out of, it’s up to every individual to settle their own codes. This is underscored (maybe) by Gabriel trying, manically, pointlessly, to scrub dried blood out of the church’s hardwood.

(Side note, the liturgical readings posted inside the church are all topical. They include: Matthew 27:52And the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. And Luke 24:5In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead?”)

At the hospital, Beth learns that Carol has suffered serious injury (duh) and may not recover without the right medication. Not wanting to waste resources on a seemingly lost cause, Dawn orders her taken off machine care. But later, Dawn also gives Beth the key to the medicine cabinet, suggesting she’s got to pose as a strongman to stay in control. Dawn is a new kind group leader. Though she seemed a run-of-the-mill tyrant at first, she increasingly appears to be just a figure head, barely keeping the hospital collective together. “You don’t know how fragile this thing is,” she tells Beth (who’s scars have reached Chucky frequency).

At the stalled fire truck, a concussed Eugene is baking in the sun. A PTSD-ed Abraham is looking off into the distance, spaced way out. In the mean time, Glenn, Tara, and Rosita take trip to the local pond to stock up on water and do a little impromptu fishing. It’s all very Stand By Me and the trio seems the least conflicted of any of the current sub-groups, amiably deciding to forge ahead even in the wake of the charade that was Eugene’s “mission” to Washington.

At the church, Carl tries to convince Gabriel he can teach him to protect himself from the undead. When Gabriel expresses discomfort at the conflict that ended the lives of the Termians, Carl points out they were “killers,” and Gabriel retorts, “So are we.” (Throughout, the confessor is on his knees and the teenager shaped by the post-apocalyptic world is towering above him in role reversal.) Gabriel retires to a backroom where he pulls up the floor boards and takes off. On his way to exile, he lands on a nail creating some Stigmata light for the road. When he encounters a roaming walker, he can’t bring himself to bash her brains out.

The main tension (and action) is with the fourth group—Tyrese, Sasha, Rick, Daryl and Noah—who are on a rescue mission to retrieve Carol and Beth from the hospital. Rick’s plan: slip in, special forces style, killing whoever gets in the way. Cold, ruthless, pragmatic. Tyrese’s plan: capture two of Dawn’s officers and diplomatically negotiate a trade. Measured, generous, idealistic. To Rick’s mild annoyance, the group sides with Tyrese’s more humanistic plan. Again, testing of boundaries…

Things go wrong pretty quickly. Though the group manages to ambush two of the hospital’s police officers, they’re quickly saved by a backup force. The shootouts that follow take place in a wasteland of badly burned walkers, many of which are melted to the pavement. This is the napalm-scented hell awaiting those who were evacuated from the hospital in the midst of the outbreak. Ultimately, Rick’s group gets its hostages.

One of them, Officer Bob, seems like a pretty good guy. Earnest, trustworthy. He convinces Sasha to put one of his former colleagues, now rotting and writhing outside, out of his misery. But as she’s lining up her shot, Bob bashes her against the window and scuttles off.

Zombie Kill Report
1 double fingers to the eyes by Daryl; 1 silenced shot to the skull by Rick; 1 knife to the head by Glenn; 1 knife to the head by Rosita; 1 knife to the head by Tara.
Estimated total: 5

TIME Recaps

The Walking Dead Watch: ‘Consumed’

Melissa McBride as Carol Peletier - The Walking Dead _ Season 5, Gallery - Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC
Carol: Woman on fire. Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC—© AMC Film Holdings LLC.

It's a ballad of the badasses as Carol and Daryl go on the hunt. Also, falling zombies redefine purple rain

“Consumed,” the sixth episode of the fifth season of AMC’s The Walking Dead, is a slow burn. The good kind—one of the series’ occasional faults is whiplash-inducing gear shifts—in which we get to watch Carol and Daryl go on the hunt for Beth.

The adventures of this Butch and Sundance (or is it Thelma and Louise?) are interspersed with vignettes from Carol’s recent past, starting with her being fromerly ostracized from the group by Rick for her draconian problem-solving style. (It’s not quite the same as being cast out of paradise but, in their world, likely the closest thing to it.) This is supposed to remind us, I think, of Carol’s character arc over the course of the last five seasons, from cowed, battered wife to lone-wolf badass.

Carol and Daryl are a captivating pair. Both are outsiders, at times morally righteous and at others nihilistically resigned. Both have lost the most important person to them, Daryl his brother and Carol her daughter. Both are damaged goods, in other words, and as such have formed a particularly strong bond to each other. The question is, is it romantic?

By the normal rules of television, it shouldn’t be. In the book, Andrea and Dale have a completely believable romantic liaison, despite their age difference. In the television series, partly because of casting, that idea is laughable. “Consumed” is particularly compelling for teasing out the “what’s up with us?” quality of the friendship. This teasing includes a moderately awkward scene about who’s going to sleep on the top bunk and a dialogue in which Carol says to Daryl, “You were a kid, now you’re…a man.”

Otherwise, the episode consists mainly of the duo making their way through a ruined Atlanta—a family shelter familiar to Carol from her past, abandoned and luxurious legal offices, sky-bridges full of walkers squirming in sealed sleeping bags like fussy mummies—looking for the hospital tribe holding Beth. Throughout, they carry on a philosophical discussion of the weight of the past, the meaning of survival, and the epistemology of identity. You know, the usge. It’s a little like the School of Athens—with zombies—or Before Sunrise—with zombies. (Or, maybe even better, a level in the Last of Us.)

Along the way, they scavenge for supplies in a van teetering on the edge of a freeway overpass. When the vehicle gets over run by walkers and, ultimately, pushed off the edge, the two just barely survive the fall. The undead following off the ledge like lemmings and splattering all around gives new definition to purple rain.

Eventually, they run into Noah, the orderly Beth helped escape two episodes ago. At first, he steals their weapons, but later, Carol and Daryl catch up to him and they join forces, trading information about where Beth is being held. Having resolved to go save Beth, Carol is unexpectedly hit by a car and taken to the hospital in question. Daryl and Noah steal a truck and presumably head back to the church to get reinforcements.

All of this, it seems, sets us up for The Walking Dead’s familiar dynamic, it’s cruising speed of warring tribes girding for conflict. But this time, the battlefield—a megalopolis teeming with walkers—promises much more danger.

Zombie Kill Report
1 run over by car by Daryl; 1 knife to skull by Carol; 1 arrow to the head by Daryl; 4 sharp object to the head by Carol and Daryl; 1 knife to the face by Daryl; 3 gunshots to the head by Carol; 1 knife to the head by Daryl; 3 machete chops to the head by Daryl; 1 arrow to the head by Carol.
Estimated total: 16

The Window Metaphor
When Daryl and Carol are holed up in the shelter, they come upon a mother and child who have turned, clearly an echo of Carol and Sophia. The walkers claw at a door made of frosted glass. This is a recurring metaphor this season: the lines, whether opaque or completely clear, that separate the living from the undead. Progressively louder, the show’s writers seem to be asserting, “Walkers, they’re just like us.”

TIME

The Walking Dead Watch: ‘Self Help’

Josh McDermitt as  Dr. Eugene Porter - The Walking Dead _ Season 5, Gallery - Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC
Eugene: "Hello, is it me you're looking for?" Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC—© AMC Film Holdings LLC.

Oh no he didn't! And a spectacular new way to kill walkers in droves

Episode five of the fifth season of AMC’s The Walking Dead takes a breather from the rapid-fire plot development of the first few episodes and goes into Balasana for some character study. Unlike the first handful of episodes which consisted of an anthropological tour through the various types of human communities—cannibals, cowards, exiles—and how they self-organize—command and control, perfectly rational, mildly democratic—“Self Help” turns inward, developing Abraham and Eugene, two relative late comers to the series.

It’s all a bit dull, especially if you’ve read the comic books and know what to expect from Eugene, the mullet-sporting scientist supposedly from the Human Genome Project and supposedly in possession of a cure for the zombie outbreak. Though, the writers were kind enough to toss in two gratuitous scenes, one of sex, one of carnage, to keep things from dragging.

Abraham, Rosita, Glen, Maggie, Eugene and Tara have taken the church short bus, leaving the rest of the group behind to get to Washington, D.C. as quickly as possible. On the way, the bus crashes spectacularly and for reasons unknown. The group’s only option is to fight its way out.

It’s nice to know that, even after the apocalypse, people are still quoting Bill O’Reilly even though he’s presumably been eaten. “We’ll do it live!” Abraham asserts before leading the charge into a thicket of walkers surrounding the vehicle. (It’s also nice to know that, even in a time of severe scarcity, Abraham is still managing to stock up on phosphorescent red hair dye.)

There’s a cloud of uncertainty around Eugene as all of this unfolds. Is he just a coward? Is he simply on the spectrum? Or, is there something else going on? We’re also treated to some radial tilt-shift flashbacks of Abraham’s former life as a father and husband doing his best to get through the end of the world.

The group fights its way to an abandoned book store. We get to see vignettes of life on the road during the end times, fashioning a lighter from a battery, making a stove with hangers, and so on. Abraham and Glenn, Glenn and Maggie, Tara and Eugene all engage in short colloquies during this interlude. In these quiet scenes, we can see the interpersonal bonds of the group tightening. Which is a nice counterbalance in a show where things are usually falling apart (or, more likely, being shredded apart by gnashing teeth). But there’s a shared delusion quality to it all.

The rationale of the group’s “mission” (getting Eugene to D.C.), which has seemed tentative all along, frays even more when Tara catches him watching Rosita (Laura Croft in pigtails) and Abraham making love. Eugene, peeping from the self help section (winky face), admits that he caused the crash by putting crushed glass in the bus’ fuel line. Tara chalks it up to bad judgement and promises to keep Eugene’s secret.

But why—considering he almost killed everybody aboard—doesn’t exactly add up until we see Maggie and Glenn engaging in their own pillow talk. Maggie is happy to have something to be going toward, rather than dwelling on the horrors of the past. They’re finally living for the future, she explains, and that feels pretty good. Cut to a shot of a walker shambling ever forward, presumably happy and fulfilled by his life’s “ambition” to eat another brain.

You get the feeling everybody senses Eugene is full of it, but that it’s alright so long as his story of weaponized diseases and missiles and secret labs provides a pretext for forward motion (and meaning) for everybody in the group. All in all, this is one of the series’ more deeply nihilistic episodes I can recall.

The group finds a semi-functioning firetruck and heads out of town—but not before Eugene mows down a dozen walkers with the roof-mounted firehose. It’s new, it’s gross, and it’s spectacular. This saves the day but also empties the tank which causes problems down the road, a lot like Eugene’s save-the-world story itself, which provides a reason to keep going in the present but will soon cause much, much bigger problems.

Things finally come to a head when the group finds itself face to face with a massive ranch (feed lot?) of walkers. Abraham—who we’ve learned drove his wife and children away by trying to protect them, brutally—wants to push through and the rest of the group revolts.

As the tussle over what to do gets physical, Eugene confesses that he’s full of it. “I’m not a scientist,” he says, “I just know stuff.” He goes on to explain, in a perfectly delivered, Deadwood-esque monologue, that his story is an adaptation to the environment, his way of getting strong people to protect him. And get him to Washington, which he believes is the most likely place to provide refuge.

Abraham loses it and punches Eugene, a lot. We flash to Abraham finding the corpses of his daughter, son, and wife. Just as he’s about to kill himself, we hear Eugene mewling for help. In that moment, Abraham and Eugene seal their pact. Eugene will provide the lie and Abraham the muscle. Or as Ernest Becker might summarize it all, living is lying.

Zombie Kill Report
5 knife blades to the head by Tara; 1 bayonet to the face by Maggie; 1 knife to the skull by Rosita; 3 blade stabs to the head by Abraham; 2 knifes to the head by Glenn; 3 rifle butts to the head by Abraham; 1 riffle butt to the head by Glenn; 3 knife blades to the head by Maggie; 11 firehose sprays to the head by Eugene; 1 knife to the skull by Rosita; 3 blades to the head by Abraham.
Estimated total: 34

Product Placement
The book store is replete with easter eggs. Not only is Eugene watching from the self help section, his confession to Tara is backdropped by a row of We All Fall Down, whether that is Nic Sheff’s addiction memoir or the Y.A. hit from the early-90s is unclear but still… The shelves and signage in the story are filled with clever, covert messages to the audience.

About the Artist
TIME editor-at-large Richard Lacayo helpfully pointed out to me that Caravaggio’s The Denial of St. Peter, which was featured prominently in episode four “Slabtown,” is not located in Atlanta but in New York. So how did it make its way down the eastern seaboard during the apocalypse?

TIME Television

The Walking Dead Watch: ‘Slabtown’

Emily Kinney as Beth Greene - The Walking Dead _ Season 5, Episode 4 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
Beth: "This is going to be uncomfortable, right?" Gene Page/AMC—© AMC Film Holdings LLC.

New group, new maladjustments. And, in a first, the show's most uncomfortable scene involves a lollipop

Beth is back! In “Slabtown,” the fourth episode of the fifth season of AMC’s The Walking Dead, Beth—who had been taken by roadmen at the end of the previous season—wakes up with the trappings of old-fashioned civilization around her.

The lights are on. Wall clocks still tick forward. People are wearing uniforms, just like they used to. We meet police officer Dawn and medical doctor Steve who have been holed up in Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta with other survivors, some of whom reportedly found Beth on the road and saved her. Within the first few moments of their meeting, Dawn makes the stakes clear when she tells Beth point blank, “You owe us.”

The hospital has a time warp quality to it. The ventilators and other medical machines work. People are clean, neatly dressed and tightly coifed. They have normal professions—cop, doctor, nurse, even a janitor. There’s order, in other words. But the price for this, it quickly becomes clear, is being useful. It’s obvious that the denizens of this group are accruing debts and constantly trying to chip away at them however they can. Or, as the tightly wound control freak who runs the place, Dawn, eventually puts it: “Food, clothes, protection. When have those things ever been free?”

In the hospital cafeteria, Beth meets the quiveringly pervy officer Gorman who tells her a walker was “eyeing your thighs…but I got there first.” Ew. Beth forgoes dinner when it becomes clear Gorman is going to want something unsavory in return. She bonds with doctor Steve, who is chilling in an office equipped with a record player, Junior Kimbrough vinyl, and a Caravaggio somebody stopped finding valuable once the dead began shambling around looking for brains to munch. (It’s The Denial of St. Peter, which Steve makes reference to later, though I can think of at least a half-dozen more that would have been apt given the times.)

Beth, who begins paying her way by assisting the doctor, witnesses the gut-wrenching way this group makes its decisions. One survivor named Joan who seems to have tried to escape but gotten bitten in the process has to undergo an emergency amputation, which we get to see—and hear. As far as grating sound effects go, chalk on blackboard has nothing on sawing wire on bone.

Beth also meets Noah, a scrawny janitor planning his own emancipation. Both Joan and Noah eventually tell Beth that Dawn is only barely in control of brutes like Gorman. Shortly thereafter, Gorman himself proves this is indeed the case when he suggestively forces a lollipop into her mouth in a scene that’s as uncomfortable to watch as anything involving Marlon Brando waving around a pad of butter.

Everybody here seems miserable, but they can’t really leave. Dr. Steve takes Beth on a tour of the grounds that shows how trapped this group is by the mass of walkers outside. He seems like a good guy—until he sends Beth to give a patient an injection that ends up killing him. Noah tries to take the fall for the incident (and gets a beating for it). Turns out, the patient in question was a doctor from a nearby medical center Steve had known before the fall. Steve wanted him eliminated to be secure in his role as the group’s only medical personnel. (So much for the Hippocratic Oath.)

Gorman’s last unseemly advance toward Beth ends with Joan—who turned after committing suicide—eats his face off. Beth and Noah attempt to escape. He gets out, but Beth is caught by Dawn’s goons. In the final scene, Beth grabs a pair of surgical scissors and is about to make some carnage when Carol is carted in unconscious on a stretcher.

Zombie Kill Report
8 gun shots to the head by Beth; 1 boot heel to the face by Beth; 2 head shots by Dawn’s officers.
Estimated total: 11

Calling Lévi-Strauss
Increasingly, this season seems like Gulliver’s Travels penned by H.P. Lovecraft. Each new group we encounter is organized along a different set of principles, makeshift morals depending on their particular shared experience. Each one reminds me of a city state with its own deviating customs—the cannibalistic Terminus, this Spartan-like hospital group. Noah, at one points, hints at more to come when he talks about his home in Virginia. “We had walls,” he says wistfully. And, of course, there’s Rick & Company which is still forging its values.

Nomenclature
This group appears to call the living dead “rotters,” which though cooler seems less apt than “walkers.” What’s your favorite non-walker term from the series?

TIME Television

The Walking Dead Watch: ‘Four Walls and a Roof’

Walkers - The Walking Dead _ Season 5. Gallery - Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC
"I could eat." Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC—© AMC Film Holdings LLC.

Relatively light on walker slayings but still plenty gruesome. Also, who ordered the carpaccio?

See correction below.

Episode three. The metaphors accrue.

The third episode of the fifth season of AMC’s The Walking Dead opens in the courtyard of an elementary school where the remaining Termians are enjoying roasted Bob shank. Bob, you might recall, was abducted in the final moments of the previous episode and woke up to find his captors working through the gristle on his leg meat, like a cross between The Raft of the Medusa and that scene in Red Dragon where Hannibal Lecter serves the Baltimore symphony board of directors a dish of clumsy flutist.

(For fans of Telltale Games’ excellent The Walking Dead: Season One, it also recalls the woebegone happenings at the St. Johns dairy farm in episode two, ‘Starved for Help.’ Download it here for iPad and iPhone.)

The cannibalism—and some of the attendant culinary musings by the group’s leader Gareth—are supposed to be stomach churning. (And they are!) But mostly they raise questions of hunger in the world two years on from the apocalypse. What does it cost to satiate your appetites now? And what can the pursuit of nourishment turn you into?

Shots of the Termians eating human flesh are interspersed with shots of the hungering walkers clawing at the windows nearby, trying to get in. The glass is going to break sooner or later, or as Gareth puts it “nothing lasts too long anymore.” But the point seems to be that the division between the living and the living-dead is already transparent. And that, pretty soon, it might not be there at all.

(To me, Gareth—both in the book and on the show—vaguely parallels the unnamed protagonist of Knut Hamsun’s Hunger, primarily for falling into traps of his own making and for the harshness of his self-imposed rules of conduct. Too bad he won’t be around long enough to be developed more fully.)

In any case, Bob’s horror turns to sardonic laughter as he reveals that he’s been bitten. As far as taunts go, “you eatin’ tainted meat!” is hard to top.

Back at the church, Gabriel is pushed to confess his sins. He shut himself inside his sanctuary while his congregation begged to be let in. The group, having discovered Bob is missing, fights about what to do and Glenn mediates between the half that wants to go on to Washington and the half that wants to deal with the Terminus and wait for Daryl and Carol to return.

Ultimately, half the group heads off to find the Termians just moments before they break into the church. The showdown that follows is tense and wonderful and proves the show’s writers could easily forgo the walkers and still have something compelling to present. The whole thing is an ambush, which ends with Rick and company hacking Gareth’s group to bits with machetes. Objecting to the violence, Gabriel says “This is the lord’s house!” To which Maggie replies coldly, “No, it’s just four walls and a roof,” hence the name of the episode.

Bob, meanwhile, dies stoically having had a chance to say goodbye to everyone, including his girlfriend Sasha. Recalling Goethe’s Werther, he concludes that “nightmares shouldn’t change who you are.” The group splits in two and, later, we see Daryl emerge from the darkness before saying “come on out” to someone whom we can’t quite make out before the credits roll.

Zombie Kill Report
1 bullet and 1 riffle butt to the head by Sasha; 1 riffle butt to the head by Glenn; 1 knife to the skull by Maggie; 1 gun shot to the head by unseen; 1 knife to Bob’s temple by Tyreese (does it count?).
Estimated total: 6

Recipe
The Termians spit out the “tainted meat,” but don’t stick around long enough that we find out whether or not cooking flesh decontaminates it. (What would Mark Bittman say?) We’ll probably never know.

Vintage Finds
Michonne finally has her sword back!

Correction: Maggie unleashes the four walls and a roof line.

TIME Apple

3 Features a Nike-Apple Wearable Absolutely Must Have

Apple Presents Apple Watch At Colette Paris
Chesnot—Getty Images

Apple's wearable will target fitness nuts. Here's what it has to be able to do—with Nike's help

Nike and Apple have had a special relationship since 2006 when the companies announced a partnership that created a sports-oriented ecosystem around iPods and Nike running shoes. Since then iPods and iPhones have been tightly integrated with Nike+, the Portland-based sports giant’s activity- and exercise-tracking social network. (Apple CEO Tim Cook is also on Nike’s board of directors.)

Now they may be working together to improve wearables. In an Oct. 22 interview with Bloomberg, Nike CEO Mark Parker said he is “bullish” on the two firms’ joint ambitions. He went on to explain:

As I look ahead at what’s possible with Nike and Apple…technologically we can do things together that we couldn’t do independently. So yeah, that’s part of our plan, is to expand the whole digital frontier in terms of wearables and go from 25 million Nike+ users to hundreds of millions.

Expanding the wearables “frontier” is likely to start with Apple’s upcoming Watch, which will go on sale sometime early next year. The device will pack sensors that can not only track movement, but differentiate between types of exercise as well as capture the heart rate of the person wearing it.

When Apple showed off the device earlier this year, executives emphasized its fitness applications. (The company hired Nike’s former design director last year to work on wearable devices.) And during the keynote, a Nike-branded app for the Watch was shown briefly.

What could the two companies be working on? Impossible to say. But here are three features I hope they build into whatever it is they are doing together.

Intelligent music management. Nike’s iPod and iPhone apps have always been able to control music playback. Some versions have also included a “power song” feature—a user designated tune intended to motivate through crunch time. Apple’s Watch will also be able to control music playback through a connected iPhone. But, as far as exercising goes, this is all uber-basic.

Even better would be to be able to generate playlists automatically based on track BPMs, a.k.a the speed of each song, and the desired intensity of a given workout. So, for instance, for an easy recovery run, a set of slower-paced songs might be strung together. Similarly, correlating personal performance data with listening history could yield interesting insights, such as you run your best splits to “X” album or “Y” artist.

Additional sports. This is an easy one. Despite forays into other sports, Nike’s apps have been strongest on running. With the integration of a connected phone’s WiFi and GPS data, a wearable app should be compatible with a wider array of sports. Cycling and golf are two obvious ones—with the device tracking performance for the former sport and location and weather conditions for the later.

Deeper social integration. According to this summer’s keynote presentation, Nike’s Apple Watch app will allow you to challenge friends to runs, much like its software currently does. But the Watch’s so-called “taptic” feedback—small vibrations and audio cues that simulate a gentle tap on the wrist—open up new opportunities.

For example: recording and trading “ghosts” for runs that would gently let you know when you’re outpacing or falling behind a friend on a run of a similar distance or course. Or, if two users both have watches, they might be able to swap route information, say, a favorite place to run, using the Watch’s built in communications.

TIME Television

The Walking Dead Watch: ‘Strangers’

Melissa McBride as Carol Peletier and Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon - The Walking Dead _ Season 5, Gallery - Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC
Melissa McBride as Carol Peletier and Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon. Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC—© AMC Film Holdings LLC.

Episode two is a mostly meditative palate cleanser before what will surely be a gory continuation

Episode two of the fifth season of AMC’s The Walking Dead is titled “Strangers,” but it might as well have been called “Meditations” or “Aphorisms.” The bulk of the episode is composed of multiple, one-on-one ruminations on the fundamental question (after basic survival) for our group: how to be in this world.

Carol and Tyreese, Rosita and Abraham, Bob and Sasha, Carl and Rick, Carol and Daryl all take part in these brief discussions at the beginning of the episode. Rick tells Carl, summarizing his world view, “You are not safe,” in pretty much the exact opposite speech of the one given every day by every helicopter parent everywhere. Bob, in contrast, comes to a more optimistic conclusion: “This is a nightmare, and nightmares end.” (More on Bob’s nightmares later.) Michonne, who doesn’t have her samurai sword anymore, expresses an anti-materialistic worldview. She doesn’t miss her blade, she misses her friends who have died. (I miss her samurai sword.)

The stranger we meet is Gabriel, a world-weary pastor without a flock. In Christianity, Gabriel is the angel of God’s revelation, the messenger who comes to earth to tell people important things they should probably know, like a holy low balance alert. He tells Mary about Jesus, for example. This Gabriel, in contrast, is anxious, frightened, barfy. He tells the group he is a pacifist, having neither killed the living or the undead since the outbreak. The writers, in other words, paired the group’s self-searching with the meeting of a character who supposedly should have the BIG answers.

(Gabriel is portrayed brilliantly by Seth Gilliam, who played Sergeant Ellis Carver on HBO’s The Wire. Though, given his illustration in the comics I would have thought another Wire actor, Andre Royo who played Bubbles, might have been a better fit.)

Gabriel leads some of the crew to a canned food repository to get supplies, while Abraham and Eugene try to fix a broken down short bus that, they hope, will take them to Washington, D.C. The cans are submerged in about four feet of water and obstructed by about a dozen very water-logged walkers. When a walker was pulled out of the well on Herschel’s farm back in season two, it was a terrifying and pivotal plot point. Now, melty zombie faces are just par for the course.

Back at Gabriel’s church, it becomes clear he is hiding something. He’d panicked at the food storehouse when he saw a walker wearing church-lady glasses and Carl has found scratch marks on the outside of the church, suggesting it was locked from the inside. Somebody also took the time to carve “You’ll burn for this” on the side of the church before being bitten to death. Rick tells Gabriel we all have secrets but that if his threaten the group, he will kill him.

What happened exactly, we’ll surely find out. But Gabriel is an interesting new character for a number of reasons. He recalls Graham Greene’s whisky priest, the ordained man with obvious moral failings. (Gabriel’s not an alcoholic, but he is obviously a coward.) Think Friar Tuck or Robert Mitchum’s character in The Night of the Hunter. He is interesting because his moral quandaries are singularly different from everybody else’s. He isn’t grappling with kill-or-be-killed. He’s grasping with his own failings, personal sin outside of the basics of survival. He’s a pre-apocalyptic figure in a way.

The show ends on a double set of cliff-hangers. Daryl and Carol see the car that kidnapped Beth last season and go on the hunt. Poor Bob meanwhile is captured by Gareth and some of the surviving Terminus members. When Bob comes to, Gareth gets his turn at answering the “how to be?” question, making the case for the ultimate pragmatism being cannibalism. In one of the show’s more deliciously gruesome twists, the camera pulls back to reveal that everybody is having a fine old meal on roasted Bob leg. Ew.

Zombie Kill Report
1 gun handle to the face by Michonne; 1 bullet to the head by Carl; 3 blunt force traumas to the head by Rick, Michonne, Carol; 1 arrow to the skull by Daryl; 11 sharp objects to the waterlogged face by multiple; 1 knife to the throat by Carl.
Estimated Total: 18

New credits!
Unless I missed this last episode, the credits have been redone to reference more recent and upcoming scenery.

Was Bob infected or what?
Moments before the Termians knock Bob unconscious and drag him away, he’s looking at the church and begins to ball. What’s up with that? Did something happen—a cut? a bite? pukey zombie water in the mouth that infected him? If that’s the case Gareth and company are not eating the finest quality meat…

TIME Apple

It’s Time to Seriously Start Expecting an Apple TV Again

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Images by Fabio—Getty Images/Flickr RF

Everything finally looks like it is falling into place

Apple’s Oct. 16 “It’s been way too long” event was supposed to be all about updating products that hadn’t been refreshed in a while. And it was. The Cupertino, Calif. company unveiled svelte new iPads, an ultra-high-resolution version of the iMac, an updated Mac mini, and a slew of software and service updates. CEO Tim Cook also said that a software development kit to help programmers make applications for the company’s upcoming smartwatch would be available in November, ahead of the much-anticipated device’s 2015 debut.

About ten minutes into his opening remarks, Cook put up an evolution of man-style slide showing Apple’s line of products, from the Watch through iPhone and iPad, laptops and desktops. (Scrub to 10:00 here to see it.) One could easily imagine the same slide with an additional product on the far right: a television. That is a rumor that has been around for so long, that it’s frankly grown tedious to think or talk about. Steve Jobs told biographer Walter Isaacson before he died that he’d long wanted to make a TV and had “finally cracked” the difficulty of creating a simple user interface. And, earlier this year, Cook told Charlie Rose that television “is one of those things that if we’re really honest is stuck back in the 70s…this is an area we continue to look at.” (It’s also a product Apple already made, sort of, in the early 1990s.)

What’s changed is that television is more ripe for disruption as the ecosystem of companies around it—cable providers, content creators—try to position themselves for the future. And, arguably, Apple’s clout and ability to disrupt TV is greater than ever. A number of developments in the last couple of weeks have given the idea of an Apple television set renewed luster. Consider that:

Apple has the display. The television-making business is no picnic; just ask Sony, which has lost nearly $8 billion in the last decade on TV’s alone. But the new iMac’s display—which has an extremely high resolution—is the kind of game-changer that consumers might be willing to spend more for.

Apple is calling the display a Retina 5K screen. The high-end 27‑inch iMac has four times as many pixels as the regular 27‑inch iMac display, some 14.7 million pixels. The company created its own timing controller to drive all those pixels and is using a new type of screen technology, an oxide TFT-based panel, to deliver extra brightness.

Cable companies are starting to unravel. Two back-to-back announcements this week suggest the television content business is starting to change. This had been Apple’s biggest obstacle to creating a television device with a radically better way of watching stuff. As my colleague Victor Luckerson put it earlier this week:

By making these channels available for purchase individually, CBS and HBO are embracing the “a la carte” TV model, in which viewers would be able to select the individual channels they want to pay for and ignore the rest. It’s a concept that makes intuitive sense in a world where songs, movies, books and news can be consumed individually, on the go and at little cost. But the model poses a huge threat to cable operators, network owners and even subscribers. If every network did what CBS and HBO are doing, cable and satellite operators would have the core part of their businesses wiped out.

HomeKit is the new “digital hub.” In 2001, Jobs organized the then-struggling company around a new strategy. The computer would become the hub for consumers’ various devices, cameras, music players, video recorders, et cetera. It worked. Today, Apple is working on HomeKit, a framework that lets the company’s devices control smart gadgets around your house. (For more on the smart home, read all of this special TIME issue.) One of a future Apple television’s killer features could be acting as a central nervous system for all the wired lightbulbs, thermostats and so on in your house.

Consumers want it. The current product called Apple TV, a $99 set-top box that can pipe in streaming content from iTunes, Netflix, Hulu and other digital service providers, was denigrated as a “hobby” product by Steve Jobs in 2007. Last month, Cook said the device had gone far beyond that status and has some 20 million users.

And finally, Tim Cook’s Apple is ready. The company has shown it is willing to sign the death warrant for technologies it no longer finds useful. Not to mention place big bets in brand new areas where its success is far from guaranteed. Cook said this was “the strongest lineup of products Apple has ever had and soon you can wear that technology right on your wrist.” I wouldn’t be surprised to find that amended to add the center of the living room.

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