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Google to Purchase Live Game Streamer Twitch for $1 Billion

Google has signed a $1 billion deal to acquire popular streaming platform Twitch.tv, according to sources familiar with the matter. Google’s YouTube division is in charge of the deal, which reflects the popularity of live Internet streaming and, in particular, the rapidly evolving interest in competitive gaming as a spectator sport. San Francisco-based Twitch currently touts more than 50 million monthly users. In addition, more than 1.1 million of its members broadcast videos each month. Read more

FCC Chair Reminds ISPs to Adhere to the Transparency Rule

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler issued a statement to remind Internet Service Providers that they must remain clear about anything that impacts a consumer’s broadband experience. Any ISP that defies the transparency order is subject to censure and fines from the FCC. Wheeler did not direct the message at any specific provider, but claimed that the FCC has recently received numerous complaints. The agency did not make any comments about ongoing investigations. Read more

CockroachDB Cloud-Based Software Makes Websites Resilient

A team of open source developers, including several former Google engineers, is working on software that will allow companies to ensure that their cloud computing systems will run even if a server or data center goes down. The software known as CockroachDB is based on Google’s Spanner system, which uses thousands of servers to run its online empire. CockroachDB will similarly replicate information across data centers, so online operations will not suffer from outages. Read more

Dealflicks Partners with Movie Theaters to Offer Special Deals

Dealflicks is a company that offers movie and concession discounts in order to fill the empty seats in movie theaters. According to Dealflicks, about 88 percent of seats remain empty on average. The company is partnering with movie theaters to help attract consumers through special deals. Dealflicks has already raised $1.7 million in seed funding in order to offer these discounts through its mobile app. Meanwhile, over 400 theaters have partnered with the company.

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SIGGRAPH: Haptic Interfaces to Pull and Push Wearable Users

Two “force display” devices will make their debut at the SIGGRAPH technology conference in Vancouver next month. These devices, the Traxion and the Buru-Navi3, generate vibrations that offer wearers the illusion of being pulled or pushed in a specific direction. The Buru-Navi3 uses a 40 hertz electromagnetic actuator already found in smartphones. This technology could eventually be used in navigation applications in wearables so that the user will literally be pulled in the right direction. Read more

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