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iTunes turns 13 (and still needs work)

iTunes is celebrating its 13th birthday. You'd think in 13 years Apple would have improved iTunes more than they have, but of course they haven't. Quartz has a history lesson on iTunes and why it's still awful.

Enter the iTunes Music Store, unveiled with a proud flourish by a beaming Steve Jobs. It was a digital jukebox, a music distribution game-changer, a record store to end all record stores—and it did, in fact, kill off a great number of those. The addition of the online store to the iTunes media player (which debuted in 2001) completely altered the way people bought, sold, and made music around the globe.

Nokia to enter Android market

Nokia is back, but this time they're joining the Android side. Nokia sold their phone side of the business to Microsoft a while back (which became the Lumia phone lineup from Microsoft) and now they're giving it another go, but this time using Android. Nothing is scheduled but they are making the announcement that Nokia is back in the phone business. You can read the full press release here.

We are proud to announce that the Nokia brand will be returning to the worldwide mobile phone and tablet market.

Every day our fans continue to ask for Nokia smartphones. In fact, in a recent survey, we found that Nokia smartphones are amongst the top five considered brands for purchase by smartphone buyers – and they aren’t even available yet.

So, under a new agreement, Nokia Technologies has granted HMD, a new company led by some of the world’s top mobile specialists, an exclusive global license to create a full range of Nokia-branded smartphones, tablets, and feature phones for the next decade.

Going Driverless Off-road is in the Future

We were blown away by the progress that Ford has been making in the self-driving car game, and they figure they will be ready for a Level 4 vehicle within a few years - if the regulations allow for it of course. They do a lot of testing in Detroit where things aren't all that favorable, but that's nothing compared to the effort put forward by Georgia Tech as they have been working on algorithms to get cars off-road. It's pretty impressive. Not only is your car a better drive that you are in the city, it could possible win a rally race now too.

The metre-long electric rally cars house a quad-core i7 processor, Nvidia GTX 750 Ti GPU, and 32GB of RAM; GPS; and twin cameras in a crash-hardened shell. That, and the software algorithms developed by Georgia Tech, enables the car to game out over 2,000 projections of where it'll head in the next 2.5 seconds.

Source: TheRegister

Rocket League Supports Cross Platform Play

Microsoft has been talking about cross-platform play and they are putting their money where their mouth is as they push the guys behind Rocket League to make sure it is seamless between the Xbox One and PC. Games like this are pretty easy to make work as both games really rely on controller support to be playable. I don't think we'll see anything like this on competitive FPS games anytime soon however.

Today developer Psyonix is releasing an update for the Xbox version of the game that will allow for cross-platform play between Microsoft's console and PC players on Steam. "Cross-network play has been something that Xbox One gamers have been asking us for since the day we launched," says Psyonix's Jeremy Dunham, "and thanks to Microsoft's new cross-network policies, we're proud to give it to them."

Source: TheVerge

Thinner Macbook Pro to get OLED Touch Bar

If  the rumors are true, the next Macbook Pro could be even thinner and probably more underpowered than their current model. In addition to thinner, less serviceable and proprietary components that cannot be upgraded, they will also feature an nifty OLED touch bar. This is not a new idea as a company about 8 years ago did a keyboard with changing OLED keys. Still, it's cool and it could be what makes you upgrade your Macbook Pro for something flashier.

Alongside the rumor of a OLED touch bar, the design will apparently include new metal injection-molded hinges that will enable the company to make the Pro series lighter and thinner. (Uncorroborated reports suggested that Apple has tapped the same company that made the Surface's special hinges.)

Source: Engadget

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