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It’s Pebble Time, Reddit bans stolen porn, Google teases Chromebook Pixel 2, LinkedIn pays out, the return of plastic instruments, and the 1,000th Google Chrome Experiment.
Pebble Time Hits It Big on Kickstarter
Pebble has launched its new smartwatch, Pebble Time, exclusively on Kickstarter. This is a somewhat controversial move, as Pebble isn’t exactly a small startup in need of being crowdfunded. However, with the Kickstarter campaign having already raised $8 million and counting within the first 24 hours, returning to its roots was clearly a good decision.
Pebble Time is slimmer and curvier than its predecessors. It boasts a 64-color e-paper display, up to seven days battery life, and compatibility with all 6,500 Pebble apps. The biggest change is the Timeline interface, which organizes your information in chronological order. Pebble Time costs $179 and is due to begin shipping in May.
Pebble famously funded its first smartwatch through Kickstarter back in 2012, and it remains one of the most successful crowdfunding campaigns of all time. Releasing Pebble Time through Kickstarter is being seen as the company giving something back to its most loyal customers, but we suspect the impending launch of Apple Watch also played a part in the decision.
Reddit Changes Rules on Pornography
Did Google and Reddit have a meeting and decide that they don’t like naked people?
— Mike Elgan (@MikeElgan) February 25, 2015
This all seems to stem from The Fappening, which saw images of numerous celebrities in various states of undress leaked online on sites including Reddit. Even before that, Reddit took a somewhat hands-off approach to content, allowing users and moderators to decide the best course of action. But no more.
Alongside the promise to act quickly when someone contacts the site about prohibited content, Reddit is trying to get moderators of all subreddits on board with a series of tutorials. Reddit clearly wants to clean up its act, and this is likely to be just the first step along that road. Only time will tell whether such efforts will ruin the very essence of Reddit.
Google Confirms Chromebook Pixel 2
Google has confirmed a new Chromebook Pixel is on the way, with the Chromebook Pixel 2 possibly arriving before the end of 2015. However, this updated model will still be aimed primarily at developers, with a high asking price and a small production run.
According to OMG! Chrome!, Renee Niemi, the Director of Android & Chrome, Google for Work, said, “We do have a new Pixel coming out and it will be coming out soon. We will be selling it but I just have to set your expectations: this is a development platform. This is really a proof of concept. We don’t make very many of these — we really don’t. And […] our developers and our Googlers consume 85% of what we produce. But yes, we do have a new Pixel coming out.”
The Chromebook is growing in popularity as a viable alternative for those who want a laptop that straddles the line between a tablet and a Windows PC. But the Chromebook Pixel was never going to sell in large quantities, and we suspect the Chromebook Pixel 2 will be a similar proposition.
LinkedIn Pays Out $1 for Leaked Passwords
Oh no. LinkedIn is down. How will I see desperation disguised as confidence this evening?
— Scott Wasson (@scottwasson) February 25, 2015
If you were a premium user of LinkedIn between March 2006 and June 2012 then the company owes you around $1. This is due to the settlement of a class-action lawsuit over the publication of LinkedIn passwords in 2012.
According to Ars Technica, an aggrieved premium user by the name of Katie Szpyrka sued LinkedIn alleging it was negligent over the leak, amongst other things. The court agreed, and LinkedIn has set up a fund worth $1.25 million to pay the costs and compensate the plaintiffs.
Unfortunately, 800,000 premium users qualify for compensation, so after the lawyers take their cut, each one will receive around $1. The company “continues to deny that it committed, or threatened, or attempted to commit any wrongful act or violation of law or duty alleged in the Action.” However, LinkedIn has promised to hash and salt all user passwords from now on.
Guitar Hero & Rock Band are Returning
Fans of cheap plastic instruments may soon have reason to celebrate, with new rumors suggesting Activision is keen to bring Guitar Hero back. According to Kotaku, a new Guitar Hero game for PS4 and Xbox One will be announced at E3 2015, and possibly arrive before the end of the year.
This follows on from previous rumors that Harmonix is working on a new Rock Band game for the same next-gen consoles, after the developer inexplicably released new tracks for Rock Band 3. If true, this could mean we’re due for two new games after five years of absolutely nothing.
Google Chrome Experiment 1000
And finally, Google has published the 1,000th Chrome Experiment, and its whole raison d’être is making it easier to search through the other 999 Chrome Experiments previously posted to the Chrome Experiments site.
Google Chrome Experiment #1000 visualizes the experiments using bubbles. These can be organized on a grid or as a timeline, and clicking on any one of the previous experiments transports you to it. [H/T TechCrunch]
Your Views on Today’s Tech News
Will you be buying Pebble Time? Is Reddit right to ban stolen nudes? Would you play a new Guitar Hero or Rock Band game on a next-gen console?
Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.