Science & Technology




Gadgets: Smart home fan

Smartmi's elegant 2S Fan is cool, modern and hip. It's built with easy-to-use controls to work as a standard pedestal fan but with endless features it takes fans to a new level with a natural breeze feel. The quiet and portable smart home fan has Wi-Fi connectivity, a companion app, and works with smart home platforms, including Amazon's Alexa...Read more


Jim Rossman: What's a back tap?

Apple released the newest version of the operating system for iPhones called iOS 14, and there are lots of new things to learn.

Among the new features is one I've been very intrigued with called Back Tap.

It's hidden as a new feature in the Accessibility settings, and it lets the user launch an action by double- or triple-tapping the back of...Read more

Chris Monroe/CNET/TNS

CNET: Best smart lightbulbs for 2020

Smart home tech is everywhere these days. Smart lights that you can control and automate - with voice commands or from a smartphone, tablet or other smart device - are one of the easiest ways to get on the smart home bandwagon. And with a multitude of new smart home lighting products hitting the market all the time, you've got more options ...Read more


Review: 'Console Wars' relives bitter '90s video game rivalry and cultural upheaval

Video game documentaries were rare a decade ago. One reason for that is the medium and its audience were relatively young. Stories were still unfolding and the outstanding news still hadn't gotten the patina of history yet.

That has changed recently as filmmakers uncovered compelling narratives while peeking behind the industry curtains. The ...Read more


Review: 'Spelunky 2' doesn't stray far from the original cult classic

"Pain." That's the best word to describe "Spelunky 2."

That feeling of frustration and anguish shows that the follow-up to the cult classic platformer doesn't stray far from the original. In many ways, it's almost identical save for a handful of new features such as mounts, more characters and new power-ups. The core experience remains - for ...Read more

Nintendo of America/TNS/TNS

Review: 'Super Mario 3D All-Stars' tells the story of franchise's evolution

"Super Mario 3D All-Stars" tells a story. On the surface, it's all about Nintendo's famous mascot rescuing Princess Peach from Bowser's clutches. He does this in "Super Mario 64," "Super Mario Sunshine" and "Super Mario Galaxy." It's a well-worn plot that never changes, though the journey does.

But if players zoom out and see the compilation ...Read more

E-commerce startup ShipBob gets $68 million to fund expansion

ShipBob, a Chicago-based e-commerce logistics company, raised $68 million to fund an expansion amid a pandemic-fueled boom in online shopping.

The company aims to help businesses that are a fraction of Amazon's size ship products to customers at similar speeds. It planned to nearly double its revenue year-over-year, but the pandemic forced it ...Read more

Ken Wolter/Dreamstime/TNS

Polaris makes deal to bring EV to core ATV products

Polaris Inc. has signed a 10-year partnership agreement with Zero Motorcycles to help develop an electric vehicle option for eachof its core product segments by 2025.

Called Rev'd Up, the Medina-based company's goal is become the leaderl in EV in the powersports industry.

"We are not new to electric, what we are new to is electric to our core ...Read more

Duane Braley/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS

Tech Q&A: What to do if your PC's System Restore breaks

Q: I use Windows 10 System Restore, which will allow me to return the PC's settings to an earlier time if I run into trouble. I create a new "restore point" (a calendar date to which the PC could return) every day, but it disappears within 24 hours. What's wrong?

- Jeremy Hollerman, Edina, Minn.

A: System Restore is one of the most valuable ...Read more

Sony Interactive Entertainment/TNS/TNS

Analysis: With $499 price reveal, PlayStation 5 sets the stage for holiday console competition

The biggest loser this holiday season will be my wallet.

Sony finally released its pricing for the PlayStation 5. The regular version with an Ultra HD Blu-ray drive will cost $499 and the digital version without one will weigh in at $399. They will be released in the U.S., Japan, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and South Korea on Nov. ...Read more


Review: 'Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 + 2' revamp opens door to new audience

I never understood the appeal of the "Tony Hawk" franchise until I started playing it from the beginning. I missed the original when it was released in 1999, and I tried playing the sequels but they never connected with me.

It was one of those games that everyone raves about but I couldn't comprehend why. The gameplay seemed complicated and ...Read more


Jim Rossman: When you rip your CDs, don't forget to make a backup of the files

From a reader: I would like to know how I can rip my old CDs and not lose them when I get a new computer. I have ripped them once before using iTunes but didn't realize they were stored on my PC and were then gone when I got a new one. Fortunately, I still have the CDs but would like to get rid of them. What can I do to permanently have these ...Read more

Tyler Lizenby/CNET/TNS

CNET: The best home security systems of 2020: Live monitoring, DIY kits, video doorbells

The home security industry is booming after a decade or so of app-enabled upheaval. There's a new wave of less expensive DIY systems, cameras, smart locks and video doorbells to consider alongside the professional alarm and monitoring system options that have been around for decades. Big names in tech like Amazon and Google want a part of the ...Read more


Gadgets: For those who prefer neckband earbuds

Recently, someone asked if I only like true wireless earbuds since I write about them often. I am a fan of true wireless and when you look around, obviously I'm not alone. But there are other great choices, even a style that is a personal favorite.

My preferred style is neckbands, which were popular a few years ago but have kind of ...Read more

Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension/TNS/TNS

Minnesota's new police dog can help sniff out electronic evidence in sexual predator cases

MINNEAPOLIS – Minnesota state authorities have unleashed a four-legged investigator specifically trained to sniff out digital electronics commonly used by sexual predators to exploit children and others.

K-9 Sota, a black British Labrador, was introduced to the public last week by the state Department of Public Safety (DPS) as the first law ...Read more


5 big takeaways from Facebook Connect's Oculus showcase

Although it's called Facebook Connect, the Oculus platform was still the star of the virtual and augmented reality event held online this month. The social media giant changed the name of the gathering - it was previously called Oculus Connect - to better reflect the expanding nature of its emerging technologies.

Augmented reality glasses ...Read more

Maja Hitij/Getty Images Europe/TNS

Air Force, SpaceX mum about sky-high rocket costs

Five years ago, Elon Musk, the multibillionaire CEO of the SpaceX rocket company, smashed his way into the business of launching U.S. military and intelligence satellites, a lucrative market that had been cornered for nearly a decade by United Launch Alliance.

Musk, one of the world's richest men, publicly promised in 2014 to launch Air Force ...Read more

Luis Sinco/Los Angeles Times/TNS

The luxury air business is booming — as many Californians struggle to breathe

LOS ANGELES - Gregory Malin remembers the night he realized a breath of fresh air could help sell a mansion.

The year was 2009. Some 2.8 million foreclosures were underway across the nation. Malin was hosting a party in San Francisco's tony Pacific Heights, where his real estate development and investment firm, Troon Pacific, had bought a house...Read more

Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Extreme wildfires turn smoke apps into the new weather apps

For weeks, smoke has blanketed the west coast. The Bay Area has seen a vast improvement in the past few days, but terrible air lingers in Portland and Seattle. Millions of people have been furiously checking the air quality ratings in their neighborhood regularly. On the worst days, in some places the Air Quality Index (AQI) measured 600. ...Read more

Noam Galai/Getty Images North America/TNS

Uncertainty reigns for insurers as industry adopts AI standards

As the insurance industry increasingly relies on artificial intelligence, its state-based regulators are thinking about how to ensure that the technology treats policyholders fairly.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners last month unanimously adopted guiding principles that AI be fair, ethical, accountable and safe. But these are...Read more