AirTag review: They work great—maybe a little too great

Apple’s AirTag is not a revolutionary new product. Rather, it’s a significant refinement of an idea that, up until now, has been fairly niche. It works very, very well, but it works so well it seems to undermine Apple’s attempts to focus its products on privacy and security. via Technology and News Today https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2021/05/airtag-review-a-neat-product-at-odds-with-apples-pro-privacy-messaging/

Nature at its craziest: Trillions of cicadas about to emerge

COLUMBIA, Md. (AP) — Sifting through a shovel load of dirt in a suburban backyard, Michael Raupp and Paula Shrewsbury find their quarry: a cicada nymph. And then another. And another. And four more. via Technology and News Today https://apnews.com/article/brood-x-cicadas-emerging-c8b67952ac321c8bbbfb62af48efebf0

New climate goals are going to need a lot more minerals

The world isn’t mining enough minerals to reach a future that runs on clean energy, according to a new report by the International Energy Agency (IEA). Minerals like lithium, cobalt, and nickel are the building blocks for clean energy economies. via Technology and News Today https://www.theverge.com/2021/5/5/22421081/critical-minerals-climate-change-goals-clean-energy

Disney’s REAL lightsaber looks insane! Here’s how it may work

Disney released video of a working lightsaber that will be part of the entertainment at the Star Wars-themed hotel, Galactic Starcruiser. Bridget Carey explains how the company likely pulled off this feat of engineering.

0:00 Lightsaber!
0:23 Galactic Starcruiser
0:41 Flashback
1:15 “Real” lightsab via Technology and News Today https://youtube.com/watch?v=HDgr01OT0h4&feature=share

HomePod Mini Supports the New Thread Protocol That Could Transform the Smart Home

Besides the A5 chip, backlit touch surface, support for stereo speaker setups, Ultra Wideband capability and $100 price tag, there’s something else about the new HomePod Mini that you might not have noticed: support for a little-known smart home protocol called Thread. via Technology and News Today https://gizmodo.com/homepod-mini-supports-the-new-thread-protocol-that-coul-1845389973

Graphene: 200 Times Stronger Than Steel, 1,000 Times Lighter Than Paper

In 2004, two scientists at the University of Manchester conducted a deceptively simple experiment with potentially world-changing consequences. The researchers, Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov, were playing around with graphite, the stuff in the tip of your pencil. via Technology and News Today https://science.howstuffworks.com/innovation/new-inventions/graphene.htm

Graphene: 200 Times Stronger Than Steel, 1,000 Times Lighter Than Paper

Named for the colossal Titans of Greek mythology, titanium is pound-for-pound the strongest metal on Earth. Although it’s not a scarce metal, it is … via Technology and News Today https://flipboard.com/@howstuffworks/graphene-200-times-stronger-than-steel-1-000-times-lighter-than-paper-s9lr7q5vtdt73895?from=share&utm_source=flipboard&utm_medium=curator_share

Court says Amazon is responsible for the safety of third-party products

Amazon may soon be more accountable for more products than the ones it directly sells. According to the LA Times, a California state appeals court has ruled that Amazon is responsible for the safety of third-party products available through its marketplace following a 2015 hoverboard fire. via Technology and News Today https://www.engadget.com/amazon-third-party-product-safety-court-ruling-151546590.html

18 Surprisingly Practical Uses for Apple AirTags

Apple’s new $29 Bluetooth beacons definitely drew some inspiration from Tile’s lineup of trackers. But just because AirTags are designed like existing smart trackers doesn’t mean you can’t find other useful ways to use these little homing tags. via Technology and News Today https://ios.gadgethacks.com/how-to/18-surprisingly-practical-uses-for-apple-airtags-0384571/

Beltane Fire Society casts first female Green Man

EDINBURGH – In a break from tradition, this year Edinburgh’s Beltane Fire Society have cast a woman in the role of the Green Man. The actor, Rosamund McCormack, has been a volunteer with the society for many years. She will be playing opposite Rosa McKay, who has been cast as the May Queen. via Technology and News Today https://wildhunt.org/2021/04/beltane-fire-society-casts-first-female-green-man.html

Apple’s privacy battle with Facebook just became all-out war

Apple and Facebook may be two of tech’s biggest companies, but on the surface they seem very different. Apple rang up most of its $274.5 billion in sales last year pushing iPhones, iPads, Mac computers and AirPods headphones. via Technology and News Today https://www.cnet.com/news/apples-privacy-battle-with-facebook-just-became-all-out-war/

Watch the trailer for the final season of Netflix’s ‘Castlevania’

Netflix revealed a couple of weeks ago that the fourth season of Castlevania will also be its last. Now, the streaming giant has released a two-and-a-half minute trailer to give you a glimpse of what you can expect from the show. via Technology and News Today https://www.engadget.com/trailer-final-season-netflix-castlevania-090742646.html

Google updates latest Chromecast with more HDR controls and improved Wi-Fi performance

Google is rolling out a new April update for the Chromecast with Google TV that launched last year. It’s a fairly large update for a streaming device — totaling 166MB on my Chromecast — but includes numerous improvements. via Technology and News Today https://www.theverge.com/2021/4/29/22410534/google-chromecast-april-2021-update-hdr-wifi