Games in popular genres often require kids to pay extra to have a female avatar, even when it's essentially an appearance swap that doesn't offer significant gameplay differences:
I found that 18 percent had characters whose gender was not identifiable (i.e., potatoes, cats or monkeys). Of the apps that did have gender-identifiable characters, 98 percent offered boy characters. What shocked me was that only 46 percent offered girl characters. Even worse, of these 50 apps, 90 percent offered boy characters for free, while only 15 percent offered girl characters for free. Considering that the players of Temple Run, which has been downloaded more than one billion times, are 60 percent female, this system seems ridiculous.
Ms. Messer also found that apps charge on average $7.53 to play as a girl character -- most apps themselves cost a fraction of that amount, when they cost at all. She says she feels the cost bias makes her feel less important as a market demographic.
The funny thing is, mobile gaming audiences are generally understood to be pretty equal gender-wise, with women often the majority consumers of some of the most popular titles and genres. Maybe it's not that the game-makers have a misconception about their audience; maybe they're taking advantage.
Interestingly, last week at GDC, Ashly Burch and Rosalind Wisemann presented some survey findings that suggested that when it comes to kids, it's more economically advantageous to cater for the fact girl players are presently interested in having more gender options for their characters, while young boys actually seem less fussed.
Is the mobile game space actually trying to monetize the historical gender gap in games? Gross.
Thanks to trypophobia every time I see the apple watch UI I gag a little. :( #sad— LindaAngela McElravy (@langelah) March 9, 2015
The Daily Dot yesterday pointed to a new brand of Twitter backlash against the Apple Watch. The reason is an internet-famous phobia known as trypophobia. And if you don't know what it is, a) you may not want to scroll down, and b) Google-image-search "trypophobia" at your own peril. Trypophobia is, literally, the "fear of holes." The Apple Watch isn't covered with holes, of course; rather, it's that big cluster of dots on the face that bothers people.
Sufferers of trypophobia get uncomfortable by clustered, irregularly patterned or shaped holes, like those in lotus seed pods or honeycombs, or patterns of sores on skin. It's not a recognized phobia in the DSM, the manual of mental disorders that psychiatrists use, but according to one recent study, an estimated 16 percent of people suffer from it. One theory is that it's an evolutionary response to the patterns on poisonous animals. Another is that it's just a social-media-fed frenzy.
Either way, it appears Apple just can't learn. Its iPhone 5c cases engendered a similar reaction.
And that means the company will miss out on at least a few customers.
I could never own an Apple watch on account of my trypophobia— a flogging molly cd (@talbotia) March 9, 2015
i actually think the apple watch is rad but the trypophobia display makes me want to barf and barf oh god.— Mary H.K. Choi (@choitotheworld) September 11, 2014
[h/t Daily Dot]
Jennifer Karren identified as Calgary woman killed after whale crashed into tourist boat off Mexican coast
stop getting so close to them!!!
A 35-year-old Calgary woman was identified Thursday as the sole fatality when a breaching whale crashed on to a tour boat in Mexico as the captain desperately tried to veer out of its way.
An Alberta family member identified the victim as Jennifer Karren but declined further comment.
Karren worked in the mailroom at the Calgary office of WorleyParsons, a company that provides engineering and construction consulting services in the resources and energy sector, Global News reported.
The Attorney General’s Office for Environmental Protection in Mexico said two other tourists suffered “considerable” injuries when at approximately 11 a.m. on Wednesday, the whale breached and hit the side of a boat carrying nine tourists on a snorkel tour.
The Baja California Sur state prosecutor’s office said the collision near the beach resort of Cabo San Lucas tossed the victim into the water.
According to the tour company Cabo Adventures, the incident took place on the Snorkel & Sea Adventure as the tour was returning from Santa Maria.
“When the boat was close to the hotel Fiesta Americana, the captain had to make a sudden manoeuvre to avoid a whale that appeared directly in front of the boat,” said Ing. Felipe Diez-Canedo, general director of Cabo Adventures, in a statement.
“The whale hit the boat on one side, which caused two passengers to be hurt and unfortunately, the death of one other passenger.”
Diez-Canedo said the captain immediately notified the naval rescue team.
The woman fell into the water and was pulled out by a guide and another boat passenger.
A passenger, who was a nurse, conducted CPR until the naval rescue team arrived and took the woman aboard their watercraft, where they continued administering first aid.
“On arrival to the marina, the paramedics took the passenger to a private hospital, where unfortunately, the passenger passed away,” Diez-Canedo said.
One of the two injured guests was a 45-year-old American woman who sustained a head injury, according to Juan Antonio Carvajal, commander of the fire department in Cabo San Lucas. She is now in stable condition.
Cabo Adventures said one of the injured guests has been released from hospital and the second is travelling back to the United States for further medical attention.
The fire department said they had never responded to a call like this before.
“Incidents involving a whale? No. We have not seen an incident like this before,” the fire commander said.
Despite reports that the whale involved in the incident was a grey whale, that information isn’t correct, a marine biologist in the area told the Calgary Herald.
“We know it was a humpback,” said Anna Madrigal, a researcher who also works as a marine biologist/guide for Whale Watch Cabo.
While this type of accident is rare, there was another incident last year involving a humpback and a fishing boat, she said. No one died in that incident, but at least one person was injured.
“Accidents can happen; you are on the ocean,” she said.
Enforcement of whale watching regulations, such as ensuring there is appropriate space between a boat and a whale, is key to ensuring safe practice of this activity, Madrigal said. Mexico has laws to this effect and there are also international whale watching guidelines that most boats follow.
“Generally, it (whale watching) is safe,” but it’s essential that those leading these expeditions have training and experience in the field of marine biology, she said.
John Babcock, spokesman with Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Development, issued an e-mailed statement about the incident.
“Our thoughts are with the family and friends of a Canadian Citizen who passed away in Mexico. Canadian consular officials in Cabo San Lucas are providing consular assistance to the family in this difficult time,” Babcock said.
“To protect the private and personal information of the individual concerned, further details on this case cannot be released.”
- With files from James Fredrick, for the Calgary Herald
craig and i used to talk about opening a kick ass japanese restaurant... and this would be IT!
(via) Valencia’s new Nozomi Sushi Bar is a stunner. There’s just something about the combination of concrete and blonde wood that tends to gel in restaurant design, and when those modern and ancient materials express a traditional Japanese aesthetic, it makes us especially hungry. It was designed by Spanish firm, Masquespacio, down to the chopstick wraps. Images by David Rodríguez & Carlos Huecas.
The post RESTAURANT PORN | Stunning Concrete & Wood “Nozomi Sushi Bar” In Valencia, Spain appeared first on Scout Magazine.
not sure how or why but this site has tons of free courses that look pretty good. not sure i would attend if they are free and i don't get anything from it.... but i should!
Water, water everywhere—even in the city. Developing water-sensitive urban areas is rapidly becoming a key factor in sustainability, but it’s a challenging topic with a lot of moving parts. FutureLearn has partnered with Australia’s Monash University to offer a free online course for anyone interested in learning more about the complex relationship between water and sustainable cities. The seven-week course, entitled “Water for Liveable and Resilient Cities,” seeks to educate people about methods for protecting waterways and wetlands within urban spaces, as well as reducing flood risk and damage. The course also includes discussions on how to create public spaces for the purpose of harvesting, cleaning, and recycling water. Check out Future Learn‘s website for this and a lot of other exciting—and free—online courses.
Image via Shutterstock.
The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat? Send us a tip by following this link. Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing!
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Post tags: "water collection", city planning, designs to conserve water, Future Learn, monash university, recycled water, Urban design, urban planning, urban waterways, urban wetlands, water in architecture, water issues
i admit to buying into this in the past. i think it's due to not wanting to go to a doctor and the time it takes to wait at a clinic, get a prescription and then wait at the pharmacy.
What may be the most exhaustive review yet of the evidence for homeopathy has come to a very strong conclusion: the treatment doesn't work, and people should stop wasting their time, money, and potentially their health on what amounts to junk science.
In 2012, the Australian government set out to examine all the best available research evidence on homeopathy as part of a look into the effectiveness of alternative therapies commonly used by Aussies. Homeopathy is extremely popular in the US, too: at last count, Americans spent a whopping $3 billion on the treatment.
The main ideas behind homeopathy are that extremely diluted versions of a substance that's causing someone to be sick can actually make them better, and that these watered-down potions retain a "memory" of the original substance. Scientists have long taken umbrage with these claims, since, when examined, homeopathic treatments do not actually contain traceable amounts of the original plant or animal material they were supposedly diluting.
This week, the Australian government published its findings based on the results of 176 studies on the health impact of homeopathy.
"There was no reliable evidence from research in humans that homeopathy was effective for treating the range of health conditions considered," researchers wrote. They added: "Homeopathy should not be used to treat health conditions that are chronic, serious, or could become serious."
"People who choose homeopathy may put their health at risk"
The Australian study found numerous problems with the research on homeopathy. To start, many of the studies were poorly designed: they didn't include enough participants to have meaningful results, or the researchers failed to limit bias and control for confounding factors.
But even the high-quality studies did not find that homeopathy performed better than a placebo or another available treatment for a range of health conditions, including asthma, anxiety, chronic fatigue syndrome, colds, and ulcers. The studies that reported homeopathy had some health benefit were so flawed and poorly designed they were unreliable.
This means that not only did homeopathy treatments perform no better than other medicines, but they also failed to outdo sugar pills. This isn't entirely surprising, considering that homeopathy tablets and potions are essentially sugar pills or drops.
"People who choose homeopathy may put their health at risk if they reject or delay treatments for which there is good evidence for safety and effectiveness," the report reads. "People who are considering whether to use homeopathy should first get advice from a registered health practitioner. Those who use homeopathy should tell their health practitioner and should keep taking any prescribed treatments."
We don't need more evidence that homeopathy is bogus
This isn't the first report to come to such dismal conclusions about homeopathy. There have been numerous studies, books, and investigations demonstrating that this therapy is bogus.
In fact, there's so much evidence on homeopathy's failure to help people that some researchers have wondered when enough will be enough and we will finally stop investing our research funding on this alternative therapy in favor of putting it into treatments that might actually help people.
worth the click through and watching the video: 3 stories / day = china's new normal. 57 floors in 19 days. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veNf-bz99cI&t=73
This building has 19 10-meter-high atriums, 800 apartments, and office space for 4,000 people.Would you feel comfortable living or working in a building that was constructed in 19 days? Why not, as long as it's up to code. SECRET CODE. Think you have what it takes break the cipher and decode the message? Try this one on for size: RENOB. "That's just boner written backwards." Damn, the government would have killed for someone with your skill during WWII. Keep going for the video.
WOW! this is amazing. love so much.
© Beppe Giardino
A potted forest of trees and branching steel beams disguise this 5-story apartment building in Turin, Italy. Designed by Luciano Pia, 25 Verde brings plants up off the ground in an attempt to evade Turin’s homogeneous urban scene and integrate life into the facade of the residential building.
The undulating structure creates a transition from outdoors to in, holding 150 trees that absorb close to 200,000 liters of carbon dioxide an hour. This natural absorption brings pollution protection to its residents, helping to eliminate harmful gasses caused by cars and harsh sounds from the bustling streets outside. The trees’ seasonal progression also creates the ideal microclimate inside the building, steadying temperature extremes during the cold and warmer months. The plants’ full foliage block rays of sun during the summer while letting in warm light during the winter.
The building holds 63 units, each benefiting from the terraces and vegetation just beyond their windows and walls. Each species of plant has been chosen purposefully from deciduous plant life in Turin to provide the highest variety of color, foliage, and blooming. This innovative design provides a childlike dream while also instilling real world benefits to those who live in this urban treehouse. (via Divisare)
© Beppe Giardino
© Luciano Pia
© Beppe Giardino
© Beppe Giardino
© Beppe Giardino
© Beppe Giardino
© Beppe Giardino
I will never not reblog this.
A história que só continua quando é apagada
so cute! when they stick there little faces in the fence? i die!
@craig - we were just talking about this.
"No." This two-letter answer, favoured by two-year-olds, is short, simple, to the point and absolutely your choice to use to refuse a request.
But, for most adults, it is not as easily said as for the little one who smiles and rhythmically nods his head back and forth.
In business, and in our community, there are times when you would like to say no, but are not sure how.
Here is your guide to saying no at work and play.
Sticky situation: An invitation to an event that you cannot or do not want to attend.
• Don't delay your answer, do so ASAP. The more prompt your refusal, the easier it will be for the recipient who will still have hope in hearing a positive response from the other attendees.
• Thank the person for including you.
• If you have another commitment, mention it first and then refuse the invitation. This approach will set the tone for your refusal as opposed to having the recipient wonder, for a brief moment, why you are refusing.
• Don't lie. You could get caught.
• If you are interested in connecting with the person, offer to meet at another date and time.
• Close with well wishes for the occasion and/or an allusion to a future connection.
• If you simply do not want to attend, be clear and send your regrets. There is no need to add fluff.
"I am unable to attend," suffices.
Sticky situation: A colleague asks you to proof his report.
• Recognize the confidence that is entrusted in you.
• Keep a friendly tone. Be realistic. Inform him of your own agenda and commitments.
"I appreciate your trust. I am working on tasks with tight deadlines and do not have any extra time." "I am flattered that you would ask me to review your work. Your topic is really not my expertise. I don't feel comfortable and hence I have to decline."
Sticky situation: Your leader asks you work on a new project with quick deliverables, on top of everything else that you have on the go.
• Recognize the confidence that is entrusted in you.
• Ask for clarification on the load of your tasks and deadlines.
"I would really like to participate in this new endeavour but want to make sure that I accomplish all that is already expected of me. Let's take the time to review the timeline to prioritize my obligations."
Sticky situation: On short notice, your boss asks you to work overtime and you have a previous commitment that you have RSVP'd to.
• Give a brief explanation. Don't go into all of the details.
• Offer alternate times to complete the requested task: during lunch, over the weekend, coming in early the next day or working from home.
• If this is a regular occurrence, initiate a conversation to review your work schedule. It may be time to revisit and change your work hours.
Sticky situation: A friend or colleague asks to borrow money.
• Only decide to lend an amount that you are comfortable never getting back. Once you give it, forget about it.
• Have a personal policy of never lending money and state it.
• Simply say no.
"I never lend money to people outside of my family." "I am sorry, I just can't afford to lend any money."
Sticky situation: A neighbour whom you view as disorganized and distracted asks to borrow a tool or your car.
• Offer to come over with the tool or to drive him to where he needs to be.
• Make it about you, not the neighbour.
"I am sorry but I don't lend things that I regularly need."
Sticky situation: You are solicited to contribute to a distant colleague's birthday gift.
• Decide on your office contributions, make up your policy and stick to it.
"Thanks for including me but I only contribute to retirement gifts or colleagues that are part of my direct team." "Thanks for including me although I really enjoy everyone on our team I have a personal policy of not contributing to gifts at work."
Sticky situation: You are once again, asked to buy a token treat for a colleague's, or friend's, child fundraising efforts.
• Read this previous blog post.
When in doubt, when your body is screaming "No" and your head is saying "Be careful, you should maybe say yes," ask for time to review the pros and cons for the two scenarios. Sometimes, all you need is to step away from the person that is making the request to analyze the possible outcomes. Once you are comfortable with your "No," inform the other. Remain tactful. Be brief. Don't over-explain. Conclude with an encouraging or supportive comment.
Saying "no" to others, is often times saying "yes" to you to maintain your integrity. Just politely say "no." You have the right to do so.
You have a sticky situation at work or at home? This is your forum. Write to Julie and she will reply promptly. Want more solutions to sticky situations? Go to Facebook, Twitter or order your autographed copy of Etiquette: Confidence & Credibility. Planning a conference? Julie happily travels coast to coast and beyond, to present customized activities. With Julie's help gone will be awkwardness, embarrassment and faux-pas.
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Mercy killing is a difficult concept to stomach, especially when the animals are as adorable as koalas. Unfortunately, nearly 700 koalas were killed by authorities in Australia after they were found to be in extremely poor health due to starvation. Rampant overpopulation has plagued the koala population for years, and the government is facing accusations of poor management of the threatened species.
really long vid but i love david attenborough's voice and this is amazing.
No Choo Choo?: Make Your Own Simple Electric Train With Copper Wire, A Couple Magnets, And A Battery
cool thing to do with your kids!
so cool and yes: i would waste water watching this.
if that was a white hood, this would be very very bad
tell me more
Finish that beer and crack open another one! A professor from Imperial College London claims he can create a drug to save us from the dreaded hangover. This reported ‘God amongst men’ is Professor David Nutt, who has been working on two wonder drugs. The first is “alcosynth,” which is a drink that mimics alcohol, but reportedly “removes the risks of hangovers, liver toxicity, aggression and loss of control.” The second invention is the Holy Grail for drinkers; it’s a pill that, when swallowed, could help people quickly sober up thus reducing drink-driving accidents and, naturally, hangovers.
Audi is gearing up to add several new electrified models to its lineup, and two of them were revealed at the Geneva Motor Show. In addition to the new R8 e-tron and Q7 e-tron electric models, Audi is working on a fully-electric SUV that will have a driving range of over 300 miles. Amazing!
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Post tags: AUDI, Audi electric SUV, Audi Q8, Audi Q8 e-tron, Audi R8, Audi R8 e-tron, Audi SUV, electric car, electric SUV, green car, green SUV, green transportation, Tesla Model X
What's Michele Bachmann been up to since her 2014 retirement from Congress? Igor Bobic of the Huffington Post has the answer:
Former Rep. Michele Bachmann filming Sharknado 3 outside White House pic.twitter.com/IoGBJOaTb4— Igor Bobic (@igorbobic) March 11, 2015
Sharknado 3 will also feature Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban as the president of the United States, and political pundit Ann Coulter as the vice president.
Further reading: Sharknado 2: The movie's 10 greatest lessons, by Alex Abad-Santos
The furniture giant Ikea has announced a new line of furniture with built-in wireless charging pads. If you have a compatible phone, you can set it on top of the pad, and it will draw power without having to plug anything in.
Ikea is entering the market with a range of products including tables, desks, and lamps, which will go on sale in the United States on April 15.
Many cell phones already support wireless charging, and this is expected to become a standard feature in the next few years. But a big obstacle to widespread adoption is the lack of a universal industry standard. There are two competing technologies, and phones designed for one won't work with charging pads built with the other.
Ikea is getting involved in a standards war
Wireless charging will only work if your smartphone supports the same charging standard as the charging station. And right now, there are two different wireless standards being developed, each with a roster of influential companies behind it (Some major vendors, including LG and HTC, are members of both groups.):
- Two industry groups called the Alliance for Wireless Power and the Power Matters Alliance merged back in January with the aim of creating a new industry standard. This coalition enjoys the support of Samsung, Intel, Qualcomm, Duracell, and other companies. The PMA has a charging station called the Powermat, but it will likely be superseded by a new standard that the new group will create.
- Ikea chose to go with an opposing group called the Wireless Power Consortium. It's supported by Verizon, Philips, Nokia, and several other companies. The group is backing a standard called Qi that is already supported by dozens of devices from Samsung, HTC, and other companies.
This battle is of interest not only to device makers, but also retail establishments that might offer charging stations. For example, Starbucks has signed on to offer Powermat charging stations in its San Francisco stores.
Ikea joining the Wireless Power Consortium is a bit of a risk because it means that if the Alliance for Wireless Power eventually prevails, the charging stations in Ikea's furniture could quickly become obsolete. Then again, Ikea's support could help the Wireless Power Consortium win.
This kind of standards battle isn't uncommon. Thirty years ago consumers had to choose between the VHS and Betamax standards for VCRs (VHS eventually won). More recently, there was a fight between the HD-DVD and Blu-Ray standards for high-definition video discs (Blu-Ray won).
At some point in the next few years, we can expect this race to reach a tipping point, where a critical mass of companies endorse one standard and support for the other one collapses. That means winning a prominent supporter like Ikea is a big deal because it increases the chances that the WPC will prevail.
Photographer and dancer Mickael Jou photographs himself leaping and levitating through everyday life in his wonderful ongoing 365-photo project. He photographs himself in mid-leap with the aid of a remote and tripod. The Berlin-based artist has been recording the images around Europe for the past three years. He estimates it will take another three years to complete the project.
photos by Mickael Jou
Aston Martin is known for building sexy sports cars, but none of them could be described as “green” or environmentally-friendly – until now. The automaker just unveiled its new DBX concept, which is its take on an all-electric sports car, at the Geneva Motor Show. The result? Stunning.
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Post tags: 2015 Geneva Motor Show, aston martin, Aston Martin DBX concept, aston martin electric car, DBX concept, electric car, green car, green transportation, lithium sulphur cells
Celebrities may have cornered the market on unconventional baby names like Blue Ivy and North West, but a Swiss branding company is offering help to parents seeking unique monikers for newborns — for a significant price.
Erfolgswelle vows to create a brand-new first name — for US$31,000.
CEO and owner Marc Hauser said the process works similarly to trademark naming with around 100 hours devoted to its creation and research.
"I think it's very difficult to create a really fitting name, a name that fits to your family's background, to your cultural background ... that also fits with your sister's name and your family name," Hauser said in a phone interview, noting they've had inquiries from Pakistan, Singapore, South Korea and the U.S.
"We're looking for a really nice sound of the name and a good feeling for the name because we're creating a mythology and a history around the name as well."
For parents choosing from among existing names, some are still seeking outside counsel for guidance.
Sherri Suzanne, founder of My Name for Life, consulted in New York strictly by referral for 20 years before turning her focus to worldwide clientele online.
Phone interviews and customized email questionnaires are designed to elicit parents' style preferences, name parameters and to uncover any anxiety they may have about naming, she noted.
Following the initial consultation and ongoing correspondence with clients, she'll handpick name suggestions with considerations given to working within cultural, religious and language boundaries. The process can run several hundred dollars.
"Some clients know right from the start that they want assistance," said Suzanne.
"Some have struggled with the name of an older child and want a better experience with their next child. Others are just anxious to begin the naming process and want a partner to make their search more exciting and to help uncover names they would not have thought of."
Suzanne said a challenge for some in settling on a name is the fear of making a long-lasting mistake — or having friends or family think they have. Her goal is to help alleviate their stress.
"I sometimes equate it to a real estate broker who will bring you to the house that might be perfect for you even though you can probably find the house yourself."
Duana Taha, writer of the Name Nerd column on LaineyGossip.com, offers her opinion on celebrity baby names and also receives letters from parents seeking guidance on newborn monikers. In addition to giving advice on potential names, she suggests alternatives.
Taha said she sees her role as a "complete stranger" in the process as key.
"They really appreciate that there's somebody that's judging based only on the merits of the name and that they get to tell their story in its entirety without somebody saying you also have to pay tribute to Great-Aunt Margaret."
Taha said the wealth of naming resources can also be overwhelming for individuals unsure of where to start.
"It's not as simple as finding a name that is phonetically pleasing for a child. You also want to have a name that kind of signifies how you feel about them or how you want them to feel."
Taha said it's a "really cool feeling" to play a role in the process, adding that the best part is the thoughtfulness invested in the name the child carries.
"That doesn't mean the most unusual name in the world. It just means something that I think everybody really cared about and cared for when they were choosing to give it to this child."
Suzanne said knowing she has helped in some way in naming children is "enormously exciting" and that parents who seek her help take the responsibility seriously.
"Nobody ever comes to me just to throw the task onto someone else — that's kind of a myth about naming consultants. ...
"Every parent that comes to me is hyper vigilant and they want to do a good job."
Follow @lauren_larose on Twitter.
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Just two years ago, Elon Musk proposed a new 700mph mass transit solution called the Hyperloop, and now it has taken a big step closer to becoming a reality. Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, a company inspired by Musk’s idea has just signed a deal to build a five mile test track in central California. The track will be built at a cost of $100 million, and is expected to be operational in 2019.
Read the rest of Five mile Hyperloop test track to be constructed in California
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Post tags: California, fifth mode, green transportation, Hyperloop, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, Interstate 5, mass transit, quay valley, self-powering, Solar Power, test track