1. Flud News Roundup, June 6

    System Malfunction: Over a year ago, an online ad scam created by hackers infected more than 570,000 computers with a malware called DNS Changer. Many devices can be fully functioning with the virus without user knowledge. The FBI continued to let the services run to prevent the users from losing Internet service, but they are now turning affected systems off on Monday. Anyone with an affected machine will be kicked off the Internet until they clean their system of DNS. A website has been set up for you to check if your machine has the malware and will give you instructions if you need to get rid of it!

    More Euro Problems: Finland’s Finance Minister just announced that the country is prepared to leave the Euro instead of taking responsibility for Europe’s debt crisis and risks. The country will also be seeking collateral from Spain. Last week’s Euro summit sought to discuss solutions to the Italian and Spanish debt crisis and most Europeans are under the impression that Germany and France hold the solution, but Finland (one of Europe’s most prosperous countries) is prepared to fight back. 

    Not Good, Obama: The most recent jobs report shows the unemployment rate at an unchanged 8.2% and only 80,000 jobs added in June. Obama’s team responded that Americans shouldn’t be focused on the unemployment rate, but rather on the friends and neighbors who have recently found work and on the brighter outlook in communities. It is becoming more difficult for the president to convince the people that what he has tried in his presidency is working well and that he has something new to offer. Romney has deducted that by November, voters will understand that “America can do better.”

    In other news: 

    • NASA’s new Mars rover is scheduled to land on the Red Planet next month to explore shallower depths below the surface that may improve chances of discovering evidence of ancient life. 
    • A video of a man who talks to his 12-year-old self is gaining views and laughs on YouTube.
    • A new study shows that dead coral reefs may come back to life. 

    image source: Wired

  2. Flud News Roundup, July 5

    Syria Files: WikiLeaks is an online organization that publishes leaked documents related to government and corporate misconduct. Time Magazine says that it “could become as important a journalistic tool as the Freedom of Information Act.” Today, WikiLeaks made a big move in journalism with what they are calling the "Syria Files", a compilation of more than two million e-mails from Syrian political figures, ministries and associate companies intended to open the public’s eyes to the inner workings of the Syrian government and economy. The information includes private correspondence between highly influential people and while the documents will be an embarrassment for Syria, some of their international opponents might get their fair share of embarrassment too. The series of e-mails will be published over the next two months on WikiLeaks and their collaborating sites, which include Al Akhbar in Lebanon, Al Masry Al Youm in Egypt and L’Espresso in Italy. 

    Patch of Sun: Results are in from the Labor Department, and it seems as though first-time claims for unemployment are lower than initially forecasted. Daniel Silver, an economist at JPMorgan Chase & Co says the labor market has “softened” over the past few months and “today’s reports show a little bright spot.” Data shows the pace of hiring was accelerated in June, but the expansion of service industries was slower, which underscores Federal Reserve concern that unemployment can’t be reduced just yet because the economic growth is not strong enough. 

    Not so Fast Google: A recent patent by Apple is hinting towards a Google Glass competitor. We may of course be reading into the patent, but there is a clue of “enhanced viewing experience” for users. Apple filed for the first patent in 2006 and they were granted a patent on Tuesday for “peripheral treatment of head-mounted displays”. Google was granted a patent for their technology a few days before the I/O conference and plans to release Google Glass to consumers in 2014.

    image source: TechCrunch

  3. Flud News Roundup, July 3

    Still After Apple: Another company in China is after Apple, right after Proview just closed a copyright lawsuit with them. A household chemicals manufacturer, Jiangsu Xuebao, claims that Apple has infringed on one of their trademarks and is seeking about $80,000. The company registered a copyright for the Chinese translation of “Snow Leopard” in 2000 and in 2008 Apple tried to register the “Xuebao” trademark so they could sell Snow Leopard in Chinese stores. The attempt was rejected, so Apple hasn’t used the translation to sell that product. Most of the Chinese company’s products are common household items, but they do sell a few items like touch screens. They said they are just looking for a formal apology. And $$ of course. 

    Bees Turning Back Time: A recent study at Arizona State University led scientists to a discovery of brain aging in bees that could potentially be used to slow or treat age-related dementia. The test showed that tricking older bees into doing social tasks inside the nest (that younger bees perform) causes changes in their brain, improving their ability to learn new things. They found a significant change in Prx6, a protein also found in humans that can help protect against dementia and Alzheimer’s and another protein that can protect other proteins from being damaged. Researchers are working on a drug that could maintain brain function, but these scientists suggest that social interventions may be a key in helping brains stay younger. 

    "Take Down Your Fishing Pole…" Andy Griffith passed away today at the age of 86 and many people are taking the time to remember their times in front of the TV whistling along to the theme song of “The Andy Griffith Show”. His death came after a fight with an illness and he has been buried on Roanoke Island. Tweet us your favorite Andy Griffith memories. 

  4. Flud News Roundup, June 30-July 2

    Storms and Heat in the East: States across the East Coast are getting hit hard with heat. If being stuck in triple digit heat wasn’t bad enough, violent storms have left most of those people without access to power, which eliminates any relief from fans and air conditioning. Trees have fallen on cars and 15 deaths have been reported. The storms also created an outage of Amazon’s Elastic Computer Cloud in North Virginia, shutting down Netflix, Pinterest, Instagram and other services. The heatwave will continue today and residents are being advised to take it slow out on the road because there will be many delays, drink a lot of water and seek out the places that do have access to electricity, as some of them are offering “cool zones” for relief. 

    Apple Owes China: Earlier this year, China was upset over a claim that they had the iPad trademark. Proview’s Taiwan location trademarked the “iPad” for its Internet Personal Access Device, which was an all-in-one PC. Apple eventually purchased the rights to the name from the Taiwan branch, which they assumed included the technology. The dispute was finally settled over the weekend and Apple agreed to paying $60 million to Proview.

    Quick Reforms in Mexico: Enrique Pena Nieto was elected as Mexican President on Sunday returning the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) to power after 12 years. Depending on financial and political conditions, he plans on putting reforms into place as soon as possible. Among those promises are a six percent increase a year in the economy, the allowance of more private investment in Mexico’s state-run oil industry  and a reduction of drug violence, which has killed more than 55,000 people since 2006. The PRI was a front runner in Mexican politics for most of the 20th century and was often known for their occasionally ruthless tactics. Nieto takes office in December for a six-year term. 

    In other news:

    • A new study on spanking kids may seem a little dramatic, but is there some legitimacy to it?
    • Twenty days left till the London Olympics and the trials are heating up for candidates to stake their claim as an Olympic team member. 
    • Romney and Obama get Monday off from their campaigns. 
    • Is it a penalty or a tax? Politicians are having a hard time getting their story straight about the new health care bill. 

    image source: NY Newspost

  5. Flud News Roundup, June 29

    TGIF Fluders! Here is today’s roundup of some of the top stories around the web. We hope everyone has a great weekend! Share your favorite stories via Flud app with us on Twitter and Facebook!

    Beckham Booted: The Summer Olympics are right around the corner and teams all over the world are putting together their rosters for what they are hoping to be Gold medal material. Great Britain put out a surprising announcement that 37-year-old London native and female favorite, David Beckham, would not be joining the team this Summer. The announcement came as quite the surprise because Beckham was the one who petitioned for the Olympics to make it to London and also carried the torch from Athens. Naturally, the athlete is disappointed, but is still very supportive of his team. Great Britain is hoping to give Beckham a special position off the field because he remains the face of the London Olympics. 

    Early Bird Gets the Worm: Give yourselves a pat on the back if you’re an early riser because studies show that you are happier, healthier and more prone to success in your job. A recently published book, “What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast”, discusses the habits of successful entrepreneurs and CEOs. These studies showed that the morning is a great time to get things done before other peoples’ priorities start getting the way. It has also been determined that most people are more optimistic in the morning than later in the day. This news may not receive a warm welcome from the night owls, but if you want to change your sleeping habits, going to bed 15 minutes earlier and waking up 15 minutes earlier each day will help develop a happy morning habit. 

    Market Rebound: Things are looking up after European leaders struck a deal to help Spain and Italy’s survival in the eurozone crisis. A new system of banking supervision and a 120 billion euro package for growth promotion were two key elements to start negotiation towards fiscal and economic cooperation. Dow Jones joined the global market increase along with Standard & Poor and Nasdaq. The S&P has risen 3.3% this month and is forecasted to finish it’s strongest June in years. 

    In other news: 

    image sources: Telegraph, Techno Buffalo

  6. Flud News Roundup, June 28

    No Choice in the Matter: The Supreme Court upheld Obama’s Affordable Care Act today in a 5-4 decision that will put the act into effect over the next few years. Obama has been investing a lot of his political capital in this health care measure, so the decision is a big win. Critics of the bill say it is an overreach by the federal government; under Obamacare all Americans are required to buy health care. Republicans called this a wake-up call to Americans and what will hopefully be a campaign plus for Romney who says the answer to rising health care costs will never be Big Government. Democrats are sticking by Obama and say Obamacare is a much needed extension of basic health care to those Americans who can’t afford medical attention. Obama’s campaign manager stated a fear of a loss to Romney based on the financial landscape in the race, and this ruling may play a huge role in the race as well. 

    Weapon Against Obesity: The FDA approved a new prescription diet drug on Wednesday for the first time in 13 years. The drug offers an alternative to aid weight loss for the one in three Americans considered obese. Belviq works by controlling the appetite and activating serotonin which triggers feelings of satiety and satisfaction. Clinical data says that almost half the dieters without Type 2 diabetes who used the pill lost at least 5% of their starting weight over a year. There are of course, side effects, and many critics of the drug are saying the pros don’t outweigh the cons especially because the drug is still recommended to be taken together with a healthy diet and exercise program. 

    Big Year for Google: Google’s i/O conference continues today after some big announcements yesterday that would be hard to top. Google Glass may have been the highlight of the day; a technology that has been in the making for years, Google Glass acts as a heads-up display and a video camera that can broadcast exactly what a user is seeing. Today, Google announced that Gmail now has 425 million users and 66 of the top universities in the U.S. and over 5 million businesses have gone Google. What else does Google have up its sleeve?

    image source: Mashable

  7. Flud News Roundup, June 27

    Colorado Blazing: Wildfires in Colorado continue to make headlines after one of the fires doubled in size over night. Over 32,000 people have been forced to evacuate, including the U.S. Air Force Academy that is now threatened. The fires are only 5 percent contained and about 9,000 acres were burned in a matter of hours. With wind and temperatures expected to rise again today, firefighters aren’t able to predict the end of what they are calling the worst fire season in Colorado history. The American Red Cross is accepting donations to help the relief efforts. 

    Google Updates: Google’s developer conference, I/O 2012, began today in San Francisco. The conference brings together developers to discuss the tech world’s latest web, mobile and social breakthroughs. Some of today’s popular topics included the release of Android 4.1 JellyBean, Google Play, the Nexus 7 Tablet, Nexus Q (a combination of hardware, software and the cloud) and Google+ updates. Anyone who was lucky enough to attend the conference walks away with a Galaxy Nexus Phone, Nexus 7 tablet and a Nexus Q. If you will be joining from home, stay updated with all of Google’s releases and updates via the conference site!

    Uncertain Future: After three decades of a “cooperative” relationship between Egypt and Israel, the recent election of a Islamist president in Egypt is raising concerns about the future of these two countries. Both countries are criticizing the other side for failing to uphold their part of the deal and can’t seem to come to a mutual respect of one another. The future of their peace treaty is uncertain and unpredictable. 

    image source: CNN

  8. Flud News Roundup, June 26

    Step on the Scale: The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has suggested that physicians start examining for obesity in all their checkups. Most physicians weigh their patients at regular checkups, but few measure the body mass index (BMI), which indicates whether or not a person is at a healthy weight. Most doctors have trouble giving their patients specific weight loss advice in the event that obesity is an issue. The USPSTF is creating guidelines that can help patients afford the programs they may need to help them drop any extra weight as well as encourage doctors to engage in more conversations regarding weight problems with patients. What do you think? Is this effective?

    Promises Promises: Obama made more promises today, telling Americans that he will bring back jobs that have moved overseas. He is sustaining his attacks on Romney’s business record saying that he is the reason so many jobs have moved to places like China and India. Obama spoke at a conference in Atlanta and plans to move his campaign to Florida to raise more money after bluntly stating to his followers a concern that Romney is raising more money. 

    MarsTV: There are plenty of reality TV shows to keep America entertained on an hourly basis, but one Dutch company thinks they can do better. By April of 2023, they plan to land humans on Mars as a step towards establishing a permanent colony. Sound like an expensive expenditure? Well, it is. So to to pay for it, they will be airing the interplanetary spectacle as a Big-Brother-esque reality show. I’d like to see a Hunger Games infiltration into the script of this show. 

    image source: blastr

  9. Flud News Roundup, June 23-25

    Happy Monday everyone! I hope everyone’s weekend was enjoyable. Did anyone do anything exciting? Share some of your favorite news stories with us via Flud app on Twitter and Facebook and let us know what you used Flud for this weekend! For now, enjoy some of the top stories from the last few days! 

    Arizona Compromise: Since the the law was signed in April 2012, SB 1070 from Arizona has been one of the most-watched cases regarding immigration. The Supreme Court made their official ruling on the matter today and both sides seemed happy when they decided to only rule out 3 of the 5 measures. Civil rights groups still aren’t satisfied with the results and they will continue to fight until they feel justice has been met. View the official ruling here

    MoreInterest: Creators of Pintics (a Pinterest analytics service) have found another niche. ShopInterest (a mashup of Shopify and Pinterest) is their latest venture, a service that allows anyone to turn their Pinterest boards into an online store. So many sales are generated via pins and boards on Pinterest so they decided to help make this process easier. Set up is easy and the idea is to allow your followers to shop and make purchases on the spot from your pins! Visit the ShopInterest site here.

    Find Your Friends, JK: Facebook quietly launched a new feature, Find Friends Nearby, a location-based app to find friends. However, just as quickly and quietly as it was released, it was disabled.  A Facebook spokesperson said it wasn’t a formal release and it was just something engineers were testing. They may build on the feature at a later date, but engineers will need to perfect their technology for critics who label location-based apps “creepy”. In addition to the sudden removal of the feature, another mobile app, Friendthem, it planning on suing Facebook for stealing their idea.

    In other news: 

  10. Flud News Roundup, June 21

    Bus Monitor Bullied: Karen Klein, a 68-year-old bus monitor in New York, was brought to tears after a group of middle school students from Greece Central School District bullied her, filmed in a series of three videos. Various groups have been working hard in recent years to reduce bullying of kids in schools, but this type of bullying is rarely discussed. The videos depicting Klein enduring profane comments from students regarding her age, appearance, weight and hearing aids were posted on YouTube and have since, gone viral. The grandmother of eight has received many encouraging letters and e-mails since the incident and an online fund-raising campaign has been underway to give her a nice vacation. The school district promised to discipline the children, but the disciplinary actions are unknown. 

    Commerce Secretary Resignation: John Bryson resigned last night after his involvement in two car crashes linked to a seizure he had. He stated that the country would be better served if there was a change in the department, concluding that his seizure could be a distraction to his performance. President Obama is confident that Rebecca Blank, the deputy secretary of the Commerce Department, will be a great leader as she steps up to acting secretary. 

    Romney’s Big Plans: Mitt Romney announced to his NALEO (Hispanic elected and appointed officials) audience that he plans on implementing a long-term solution to “replace and supersede” the president’s temporary fix to immigration problems. He did mention granting legal status to those who served in the armed forces and made sure his audience understood that under Obama’s presidency, Hispanic unemployment has risen to 11%.  Obama’s campaign fought back saying Romney won’t keep his word if elected president. He will speak to NALEO tomorrow. 

    By the way, who noticed the Twitter was down today!? Their techies were working hard to solve the problem, but in the meanwhile, everyone got to remember what life was like before real time updates and fondly remembered the yesteryear of 2009…

    image source: NY Mag

  11. Flud News Roundup, June 20

    An Egyptian Soap Opera: As if matters weren’t complicated enough in Egypt after the recent elections, Egypt’s former president, Hosni Mubarak, was declared clinically dead on Tuesday. No, he had a heart attack. No wait, he is in a coma. Officials can’t seem to get their story straight on what is happening, but as of today it is being reported that he isn’t dead, but his healthy is severely deterioirating. Crowds have continued to gather in Tahirir Square today, but their focus is now on the power struggle between the Egyptian military and the potential winner of the presidency, Mohammend Morsi. Results were scheduled to be announced tomorrow, but may be delayed because of the confusion and complications brought on by Muburak’s health condition. 

    Globally Going Green: The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, known as Rio +20, opened today in Brazil. The head honchos from over 190 countries are gathering to discuss the “Future We Want”. Issues being addressed will include greener economies and sustainable development. Leaders are looking to create a brighter and greener future world-wide, but there is criticism that the conference only leads to promises and not concrete goals. Urban hubs all over the world are already implementing changes like more efficient lighting or electric-powered transport that were inspired by summits in previous years. 

    Some interesting and romantic news from the tech world:

    Two ex-Google employees have teamed up to create an app called Avocado. The app is designed to create closeness between couples. The app has features that allows couples to share pictures with one another, send private messages, and create to-do lists. Avocado was a carefully chosen name as the avocado comes from trees that only bears fruit when they grow near each other and they grow in pairs. Oh, and it’s the name of one of the founder’s computers. So sweet. Personally, I’d recommend bonding via a face-to-face relationship, but there is no denying the cleverness behind the app.

    What are the most interesting apps you’ve heard of recently? Tweet us your answers @Fludapp 

    image source: Guardian 

  12. Flud News Roundup, June 19

    G20 Talks: World leaders are gathering for the second and last day of the G20 summit. Many words are being exchanged over Europe’s debt crisis, urging for there to be action from European leaders. Economic growth and creating jobs is expected to be another topic of discussion today. There was a lot of speculation surrounding the seemingly tense body language between President Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin, but the two made a point to prove the media wrong by exchanging a few laughs and declaring they both desire to find a solution for peace in Syria. Leaders will be holding a series of “side meetings” today and a possible rescheduling of US-EU talks. 

    Back on the Streets: The Muslim Brotherhood has taken it back to the streets in Egypt after the Egyptian parliament and military tried to put restrictions on the powers of the presidency yesterday. Mohammed Morsi is the projected winner in the election and represents the Brotherhood. The rally is seeking to redeem the Brotherhood’s revolutionary credibility while many groups remain suspicious of them, fearful of being trapped between a larger political game. Skeptics claim the Brotherhood is too often concerned with religious agenda to embrace and encourage the principles that inspired the initial uprising. 

    In lighter news: 

    T-Rex Tiff: Paleontologists and Mongolian officials are tremendously upset after a claim that the skeleton of a tyrannosaur was taken illegally from their country. The United States is intervening and demanding that the skeleton (that was up for auction in May) be turned over to the government so it can be returned to Mongolia. The question is, how did someone get away with smuggling such a massive monument? 

    iPad Rival: Well, maybe. Microsoft has released their own tablet, Surface, a PC tablet that will run on the soon-to-be released version of Windows 8. The tablet features a high-definition touch screen, cameras, full keyboard option, built-in kickstand and more. There are no specifics on when the device will be available, but we are anxiously awaiting to see how it compares to the iPad. 

    image source: Huffington Post

  13. Flud News Roundup, June 12

    Civil War on the Horizon? Tension in Syria is rising and the UN has declared a warning that the Syrian government will be trying new tactics. Both sides in the conflict have ignored a ceasefire that was supposed to go into effect on April 12. More than 13,000 people have died since March 2011 and the country is inching closer to a civil war as it becomes increasingly militarized. To make matters worse, a report from the UN indicates that children have become major victims in the conflict as Syrian troops torture and use them as human shields against rebel forces on the front line. The United States has expressed hesitation to the request for intervention placing the goal on stopping the violence, not increasing military activity. 

    Wash Your Mouth With Soap: A Massachusetts town has had enough with public swearing and poor language, but is fining people taking it too far? Middleborough doesn’t think so; they just passed a law allowing officers to fine people $20 for public swearing. The list of unacceptable words has not been determined so it is according to officer discretion. We all want the world to be a cleaner place, maybe our words is a good place to start?  
    The Apple Effect: People are still talking about WWDC today. Let’s be honest, whenever something new with Apple happens, people talk about it until the next thing happens. The iOS 6 software has over 200 new features compared to iOS5 and will launch to the public this Fall. Apple also announced the release of Mountain Lion, MacBook air laptops, MacBook Pro with Retina display, Facebook integrations and much more!
    In other news:

    image source: Global Post

  14. Flud News Roundup, June 9-11

    Commerce Secretary Citation: John Bryson is under a felony investigation for a possible hit and run after hitting two cars on Saturday. He was discovered unconscious in his Lexus and was sent to a hospital in Los Angeles for examination, but is back in Washington today already scheduled for public appearances. It is reported that he suffered from a seizure and is being treated appropriately. Results searching for any drugs or alcohol came back negative and all other investigations are still in early stages. 

    The Great White Way: The 66th Annual Tony Awards aired Sunday night with appearances from Broadway’s favorite stars including Hugh Jackman (who is preparing for a highly anticipated film release of Les Miserables in December) and Angela Lansbury. The evening was a true Cinderella story for many young stars nominated for the first time as well as the unexpected winner of Best Musical, Once, the show based on the movie from 2006. There are mixed reviews on the performances by the host, Neil Patrick Harris, but everyone can agree that it was a star-studded night full of emotional speeches and entertaining performances from Broadway’s favorite shows of the year. 

    Apple Does It Again: Apple announced their new MacBook Pro today and has users all over the world drooling over the new Retina screen display and Intel processing chips. Apple is calling this “the most beautiful computer [they] have ever made.” Read more of the real time coverage of the launch here:

    image source: Gizmodo

  15. Flud News Roundup, June 8

    TGIF! Happy Friday Fluders! 

    Health News: Six different states have reported a total of 14 illness that have been confirmed to be linked to the same E-coli strain. Although many of the cases are considered mild, there are still investigations in progress to discover where the strain originated from. Potential causes can include meat, poultry, fruit and vegetables or even contact with cattle. The best ways to avoid getting sick are making sure your meats are thoroughly cooked and by frequently washing your hands while making food to avoid any sort of cross-contamination. 

    It Wasn’t Me: President Obama blamed the country’s economic problems on Republicans today, saying it is their fault Americans are out of work. This is at least the second time Obama has trying to turn focus on Congress after the increase in unemployment. He has also rejected responsibility for recent national security leaks, gas prices and told European leaders to get a hold of their debt crisis to avoid affecting the United States. If Obama isn’t responsible for anything happening in the country, then what exactly has he been doing the last four years?

    Take a Bite out of TV: In lighter news, Apple will be rebooting their TV in hopes of picking up their product’s momentum. Apple TV could potentially be opening the platform up to third party developers to help understand how the app model will transform with the TV platform. There are rumors of more content and potentially adding in a Siri interface. What will Apple think of next? 

    image source: Englishblog