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  • Uber embraces impatience with ETA feature for iOS and Android
    Uber embraces impatience with ETA feature for iOS and Android

    Uber’s latest update tackles that age old question: are we there yet? The company’s offering up an ETA feature that’ll let you share your estimated arrival time with friends and family via text message. Enable the feature in the app, enter your destination and once your driver starts his or her trip, you can text your real-time ETA along with map link to concerned parties. The latest version of the app is available now for iOS and Android. No word on how time traveling DeLorean rides are expect to impact the app’s estimates.

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    Via: The Verge

    Source: Uber

  • Pew survey: 21 percent of US cellphone owners get online mostly through their phones

    Pew study finds that 34 percent of Americans primarily use their phones to hop online

    There have been signs that Americans are leaning more and more on the smartphone as a primary internet device, and nowhere is that clearer than the latest edition of Pew’s Cell Internet Use survey. The research group found that 21 percent of American cellphone owners now get online chiefly through their handset, up from 17 percent last year. Offline users, meanwhile, have been reduced to a minority — 63 percent of US cell owners have hopped on the internet from their phones at some point. The PC isn’t going away anytime soon, but it’s clear that the traditional computer is just one internet client among many.

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    Source: Pew Internet

  • First grid-scale compressed air battery now operational

    SustainX activates first megawattscale air battery

    Compressed air batteries have long promised truly clean energy storage, but they haven’t scaled large enough in recent years to be viable companions to renewable power sources. That changes now that SustainX has switched on the first modern air battery large enough to join an electrical grid. The company’s new ICAES (Isothermal Compressed Air Energy Storage) system in Seabrook, New Hampshire can hold 1.5 megawatts of power versus the kilowatt-level capacities of its rivals. Despite its size, ICAES is sustainable; it doesn’t require ‘dirty’ energy for either compression or releasing air to its generator, and the supply won’t degrade like that of a chemical battery. The New Hampshire system is just a demonstrator to attract interest, but SustainX expects to have its first commercial battery running in China next year. If ICAES (and technology like it) proves successful, we could see more solar and wind farms that keep delivering electricity when they’re otherwise idle.

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    Via: GigaOM

    Source: SustainX

  • Study finds that anger spreads further than joy on social networks

    Study finds that anger spreads further than joy on social networks

    Want to get your message heard on a social network? Try raging about it. China’s Beihang University has published a study of Sina Weibo users which suggests that anger-fueled online posts have more of an influence than those reflecting other emotions. During the research period, a typical bitter comment would affect posts three degrees removed from the original; joy had a muted impact, while disgust and sadness hardly got any traction. Don’t be too quick to lament the human condition, though. As researchers note, many of the angry posts were triggered by politics in Weibo’s native China. There’s a chance that internet denizens on other social networks have a rosier outlook on life.

    [Image credit: Wayne Marshall, Flickr]

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    Via: MIT Technology Review

    Source: Cornell University Library

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