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Tech Week: Earnings, A Heartbleed Arrest And Digital Distraction

There was really only one tech story last week — the potentially disastrous Heartbleed bug. This week, we return to more of a panoply of tech-related news, starting with NPR stories in the ICYMI section, the broader topics in the industry in The Big Conversation and fun links you shouldn't miss in Curiosities.

ICYMI

Digital Distraction Remedies: Is a backlash beginning ... in favor of the physical world? Kids, gamers and restaurant-goers are finding ways to step away from smartphones and reconnect the old-fashioned way. Laura Sydell introduced us to Ingress, a video game that gets people to connect in person. Steve Henn's daughter reminded us that in some cases, parents are too distracted by devices and ignoring their kids. And the service industry says put those phones away and just enjoy breaking bread together, in a piece I reported on Monday.

Big Conversation

Tech Earnings: The tech bubble 2.0 questions keep swirling, and stocks started tumbling even before Google reported its numbers, which were disappointing to Wall Street despite 19 percent revenue growth. Yahoo performed relatively better in the eyes of investors, thanks to its stake in Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, which is poised for an IPO. More companies will be releasing numbers in the next couple of weeks, so as Time notes, it will all be interesting to watch.

Heartbleed Hacker Charged: It was a vulnerability that someone skilled could exploit, and law enforcement believe they found at least one guy who did. A 19-year-old Canadian student was arrested for allegedly exploiting the Heartbleed vulnerability to steal taxpayer data from as many as 900 Canadians. And researchers say an attacker used the bug to break into a major corporation.

Curiosities

The Verge: The Inventor of Everything

This profile introduces you to Mike Cheiky, a darkside version of Elon Musk. "He is either the world's most unheralded genius, or he's criminally insane," a former colleague says of Cheiky.

Wall Street Journal: Bitcoin Creator Satoshi Nakamoto 'Unmasked'...Again?

It wasn't that long ago that Newsweek caused a tempest over its claim that a man living in LA named S. Nakamoto was the father of the digital currency. He denies it and may sue. Now, a linguistic analysis points the finger at Nick Szabo, "a well known name in cryptography circles," the Journal reports. Szabo has also denied being Nakamoto.

Engadget: 'Wearable eyes' take all the work out of having emotions

A Japanese professor has designed a high-tech version of those novelty spectables with eyes drawn on them. "The digital eyes blink when you nod or shake your head, look up when you tilt your head down and (best of all) it stays open even while you doze off ... ," the tech blog says. They're designed "to make you look friendlier and less socially awkward than you actually are."

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NPR

Is It All Greek To You? Thank Medieval Monks, And The Bard, For The Phrase

Ben Zimmer, language columnist at The Wall Street Journal, explains the origin of the phrase "it's all Greek to me" — and shares a few variants from other languages.
NPR

Do Try This At Home: 3 Korean Banchan (Side Dishes) In One Pot

If you've ever eaten at a Korean restaurant, you're used to the endless side dishes that come out with the meal. They're called banchan, and they're remarkably simple to make for yourself.
WAMU 88.5

Cutting Local Taxes in The District

The D.C. Council has taken steps to accelerate tax cuts for all income earners. They're part of a broader overhaul of the city's tax levels, but some council members argued there wasn't enough time for a rigorous debate about the new schedule. We explore the debate over cutting taxes for D.C. residents and how it affects the city's ability to pay for critical local services.

NPR

Reddit CEO Says Miscommunication Led To Blackout Protest

A user revolt briefly shut down the social site last week after a key employee was dismissed. Interim CEO Ellen Pao says the company has "apologized for not communicating better" with site moderators.

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