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Liberian health care worker helping to fight Ebola

You know how your smartphone and computer just do nothing when you're not using them? You can now put those slackers to work in a noble cause: helping cure the Ebola virus. IBM's World Community Grid has teamed up with scientists from the Scripps Research Institute with the "Outsmart Ebola Together" project to tackle the deadly plague. The laboratory has been studying the virus for the last decade, and has mapped potential weak points in Ebola proteins. But the process of narrowing down promising drugs is computationally intensive, which is where you and your device come in.

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4th Annual Critics' Choice Television Awards - Cocktails

RuPaul Charles is nothing if not brutally frank. And with a decades-spanning career that's taken him from former New York City club kid to one-time "Supermodel (of the World)," to current host of Logo TV's cult reality show competition RuPaul's Drag Race and all-around impresario of his brand, he's certainly earned the right to tell it like it is. That candor's what his drag persona would refer to as "No T, No Shade," and it's incredibly refreshing.

Sure, Ru's name may not be the first that springs to mind when you think tech, but with his recently released freemium mobile game Dragopolis 2.0 hitting iTunes and Google Play, he carved some time out of his busy schedule to talk to me about being a "gaymer," the importance of Apple CEO Tim Cook's coming out and why Netflix is the key to his current media empire.

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After a whole host of unconfirmed media reports, the Federal Bureau of Investigation just officially stated it believes that North Korea was indeed involved with a gigantic Sony hack that saw personal information, unreleased movies and thousands of emails leaked online. According to a release issued by the Bureau, an investigation revealed "significant overlap" between the means of attack against Sony and previous hacks conducted by the North Korean government. Earlier reports also suggested that the FBI would identify China as a potential participant (either directly or through use of its network infrastructure) in the attack, but no mention of the country was made in this first announcement.

"North Korea's actions were intended to inflict significant harm on a U.S. business and suppress the right of American citizens to express themselves," the Bureau's statement reads.

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Long before Transformers director Michael Bay choked onstage at Samsung's lavish CES 2014 press conference, the Korean company was just another electronics outfit begging for attention. But after decades at CES, Samsung is now the undisputed king of the show. Its blowout media events are the largest and most difficult to get into. Samsung Electronics CEO BK Yoon is kicking off the show next month by hosting the prestigious opening keynote. And it's one of the few tech giants left standing at CES, as Microsoft and others abandon it. Samsung's glorious rise mirrors its ascent in the mobile industry, and it's also yet another example of the company's oft-repeated formula for success: Time, money and perseverance lead to victory.

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There's a new way to amuse, educate or just distract your offspring while Mommy has a little sippy-poo for the holidays -- Amazon has just dumped a bunch of new content into FreeTime Unlimited. The kid-centric service runs $2.99 a month for Prime subscribers, and includes around 4,000 educational books, 400 "age-appropriate" apps and several thousand TV shows and movies. Amazon's added "thousands of new titles," including games Frozen Free Fall from Disney and Dora's Great Big World, along with e-books from Dr. Seuss and Sesame Street. If you're on FreeTime Unlimited and have an Amazon Kindle reader, Fire TV or Fire tablet (like the Kids Edition shown above) you can access the content now, or sign up for a free trial.


Amazon SVP of Devices David Limp promised back in October that the company will continue releasing updates for the Fire phone despite its rather poor performance -- like this big software upgrade, for instance. The latest version of Fire phone's OS comes with a long list of new features, including the ability to translate text and identify artwork (well, anything included in its 2,000-piece catalog, anyway) in photos using Firefly. Plus, there's a new camera mode called Best Shot that saves three versions of each captured photo, so you can choose the best one.

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Nobody laughs much at Elon Musk anymore, but plenty of people snickered at his Hyperloop idea (okay, also the killer robot thing). To remind you, the Hyperloop is a series of underground trains powered by compressed air that transport folks between cities in tubes at around Mach I. While that may sound certifiably insane, a company called Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) doesn't think so, and with the help of some UCLA students, has made considerable progress developing the idea. According to Wired, the startup (assisted by JumpStartFund investors) has enlisted top engineers from companies like Boeing, Airbus and SpaceX willing to work on Hyperloop in their spare time in exchange for stock options.

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Premiere Of HBO's

Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin has called the cancellation of Sony's The Interview "a stunning display of cowardice," and says he'd be glad to show it in his own theater, the Jean Cocteau Cinema in New Mexico. Like other celebrities (including George Clooney), the Game of Thrones author is critical of both the chains and Sony itself, but the comments posted to his blog are particularly pointed. He says "it's a good thing these guys weren't around when Charlie Chaplin made The Great Dictator. If Kim Jong-Un scares them, Adolf Hitler would have had them shitting in their smallclothes." He ends the post saying "come to Santa Fe, Seth [Rogen], we'll show your film for you."

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We realize that the market for a nearly $4,000 bicycle is going to be fairly limited -- especially when it's made for serious off-roading -- but bear with us for a moment. The iGo Electric Fatbike is a bit different than the electric two-wheelers we've seen before because, for one, well, it's a fatbike. Meaning, it's specially designed to tackle both snow, sand or other soft terrain with relative ease. To make those typically undesirable substrates (or maybe just the road to your favorite deli) a little easier to get across, the iGo will match your pedal input with its electric motor and 12Ah Panasonic battery. Pedal faster and you'll get a bigger boost, slower and it'll cut back on the push; there are an adjustable ten levels of power assistance, too. The designers seem pretty far along on the process and say they're hitting Kickstarter to setup their new assembly facility and complete the first production run. Want in? All it takes is 3,595 Canadian dollars.

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iPad Air 2

Apple CEO Tim Cook has said he's "deeply offended" by fresh allegations of poor working conditions in its suppliers' Chinese factories. Contractors hired by Apple to assemble its latest products have been exposed before, and while the firm has tried to be more proactive in recent years, a new BBC investigation suggests the same problems still persist. Undercover reporters hired at Pegatron factories discovered an exhausted workforce regularly falling asleep at the production line. Twelve hour shifts are common, which means employees often clock over 60 hours on the factory floor each week -- well above China's 44-hour limit, but still possibly legal given the country permits 36 hours of overtime each month.

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