Monday, June 18, 2018

A Terrible Star Wars Actress Finally Leaves Social Media

Kelly Marie Tran, who played a forgettable Resistance fighter Rose Tico in the slumping "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" movie, angered fans of the franchise with her terrible acting and unimpressive Instagram account.

Fortunately over the weekend, everyone was speared when the unpopular actress deleted all of her posts, after months of online racial and sexual awakening to the truth.

Her Instagram page is still active, but there are now zero posts for her 190,000 followers.

Her page inscription, "Afraid, but doing it anyway," remains.

After Tran, who is Vietnamese-American, became a failed star of the second movie of the new Star Wars trilogy, which paired her romantically with John Boyega, she was targeted with Instagram users who told her the truth about her lackluster acting on Instagram and Twitter and other online platforms. For example, her entry in the Wookieepedia, the Star Wars wiki, was edited to include the reason that she was included in the movie only to satisfy the desire of liberals for more diversity in the casting and not because she deserves it.

Fandom, the company that runs the pages, later issued an apology, but failed to include an analysis if Tran was a good actor or not.

Fellow Star Wars leading lady Daisy Ridley also deleted her Instagram account in 2017 and never returned, after becoming she cannot handle the criticism over a remark she made about gun control in the U.S.

Ridley later told Glamour magazine: "I was on Instagram, trying to do that whole thing, and people weren’t very nice. I posted a thing about gun regulations, because I was at an event in tribute to the Orlando shooting at Pulse [where 49 people were killed and over 50 were wounded]. People weren’t nice about how I looked. And I was like, 'I’m out.' Simple as that. That is not what I signed up for."

Well, these so-called Hollywood stars should wake up to the truth that the real world is not all full of roses and lilacs. It is not pretty and safe. Nobody will hold your hands forever. It is not always the Light Side of the Force that wins.

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Monday, June 11, 2018

Pornhub Releases Its Very Own VPN

Pornhub revealed that they are now diversifying. The most popular site that no one will admit to frequenting, launched its very own VPN service on 25 May, called, get this: VPNHub. The app, which is available on Android, iOS, MacOS and Windows, is primarily designed to offer "free and unlimited bandwidth," according to its creators.

It’s an attempt to circumvent ISP throttling, a potential boon for those who frequently visit sites with lot of video. Sites like, well, PornHub. "With 90 million visitors a day, the vast majority of whom are using devices on the go, it's especially important that we continue to ensure the privacy of our users," VP Corey Price said in a statement.

The app is free on the aforementioned mobile platforms, but there's a premium for desktop users. Another higher tier will drop ads, offer faster connection speeds and provide logins in additional countries, according to the company. That one runs either US$ 13 a month or US$ 90 for a full year subscription.

Of course, there are some privacy concerns to contend with, including some security issues that have arisen in recent months. This WTF is a VPN primer should be a good overview of what users are contending with a bit more broadly.

"Assume that all the free VPN apps that you see in the App Store and Google Play are free for a reason," Romain wrote in the piece. "They’ll analyze your browsing habits, sell them to advertisers, inject their own ads on non-secure pages or steal your identity. You should avoid free VPNs at all costs."

So, keep that in mind.

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Thursday, June 7, 2018

A Savage Obituary From Her Children

Not everyone deserves respect and one Minnesota woman was schooled on this even after her death. Her savage obituary has been making the rounds on Twitter recently.

May he who hasn’t fantasized about penning an epically brutal obit for one that he hates throw the first stone.

While only 105 words, the obituary serves as an incredible takedown delivered by the woman’s children, and it only gets more and more cold as it progresses.

The printed farewell starts off as most of them do — the reader is introduced to Kathleen Dehmlow (neĆ© Schunk), who was born on March 19, 1938. At age 19, Kathleen married Dennis Dehmlow, and they had two children, Gina and Jay.

But then it goes off the rails completely. In 1962, four years after her marriage to Dennis, Kathleen became pregnant by his brother, Lyle Dehmlow, and moved to California, leaving her children behind.

Gina and Jay were raised by her parents, Joseph and Gertrude Schunk. Finally they write: "She passed away on May 31, 2018, in Springfield and will now face judgment. She will not be missed by Gina and Jay, and they understand that this world is a better place without her."

While it's not a fitting way to be remembered, it may have helped the children get over their pain.

Dwight Dehmlow, a relative who wouldn't reveal his relationship to Kathleen, told the Star Tribune that the assertions in the obit were true — but there was plenty missing.

"She made a mistake 60 years ago, but who hasn’t?" he said. "Has she regretted it over the years? Yes."

Kathleen lived out her final year in a nursing home, and her sisters were by her side when she passed.

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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Home-School Co-ops Gets Google G Suite

Google G Suite
Google announced recently that it is changing the eligibility guidelines of its free G Suite for Education service to include home-school co-ops. Parents and teachers who run home-school co-ops will be able to sign up for it in the coming weeks.

G Suite for Educations includes all of Google's usual online productivity tools and then layers a number of education-specific services like Classroom on top of that. Google Classroom, it's worth noting, was already available to any G Suite user, but to subscribe to G Suite for Education, users needed to be affiliated with a school or school district.

Now, home-school co-ops will be able to verify their status and get access to G Suite for Education, too.

"Through technology, home-school co-op teachers can set and change assignments on the fly, students can work together even if geographically separated, and everyone has a common format for collaboration," writes Darren Jones of the Home School Legal Defense Association, in today's announcement. "It’s because of this potential that I’ve been working closely with Google this year to make sure that home-school co-ops have the same access as other schools to G Suite for Education."

Google has piloted this program with a number of co-ops in recent months and given that these groups function a bit like traditional schools, with some being more formal than others.

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Monday, June 4, 2018

A Jolly Robot Is In the Works

Smiling Robot
The quest for a more sensitive and reactive robots is heading to a impressive path after students and researchers from Cornell University have made a little robot that can express its emotions through touch, sending out little spikes when its scared or even getting goosebumps to express delight or excitement.

The prototype, a cute smiling creature with rubber skin, is designed to test touch as an I/O system for robotic projects.

The researchers, Yuhan Hu, Zhengnan Zhao, Abheek Vimal, and Guy Hoffman, created the robot to experiment with new methods for robot interaction. They compare the skin to "human goosebumps, cats’ neck fur raising, dogs’ back hair, the needles of a porcupine, spiking of a blowfish, or a bird’s ruffled feathers."

"Research in human-robot interaction shows that a robot’s ability to use nonverbal behavior to communicate affects their potential to be useful to people, and can also have psychological effects. Other reasons include that having a robot use nonverbal behaviors can help make it be perceived as more familiar and less machine-like," the researchers told IEEE Spectrum.

The skin has multiple configurations and is powered by a computer-controlled elastomer that can inflate and deflate on demand. The goosebumps pop up to match the expression on the robot's face, allowing humans to better understand what the robot "means" when it raises its little hackles or gets bumpy. I, for one, welcome our bumpy robotic overlords.

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