Go for it
As someone who thinks computer games reached their zenith with Colossal Cave Adventure in 1976, I don't mind admitting that I can barely distinguish a Pokémon from a Pac-Man
But even I have been unable to ignore his newfangled Pokémon Go game, which sees players moving through the physical world in the name of capturing virtual creatures. Just in case you've recently returned from a holiday in another solar system, to bring you up to speed: the app uses players' smartphone GPS to track their movements as they head towards places where they can pick up new characters, train their existing Pokémon, and battle other users.
But moving through the real world brings considerably more perils than playing from the comfort of your sofa. The game has led people into the waiting arms of opportunistic armed robbers, onto people's private property, and up to the gates of a Hell's Angels club. One player in Wyoming's quest for a new creature led them instead to discover a dead body, while another reportedly refused medical treatment and carried on trying to catch them all - despite having been stabbed by someone he mistook for a fellow player and asked if he "wanted to battle".
I don't know if there are any particularly exciting Pokémon in the Dagenham area, but if anyone fancies wandering around my neighbourhood absent-mindedly waving their iPhone around, I dare say they'll be in for a pulse-racing experience.
Jack hack attack flak
Following the recent deeply hilarious troubling news that hackers finagled their way into Facebook chieftain Mark Zuckerberg's Twitter and Pinterest accounts, I was intrigued to see that his Twitter counterpart Jack Dorsey has suffered a similar ignominy.
Indeed, the microblogging mainman's breach was even worse, as it occurred on his own platform. Dorsey's @jack Twitter account - as well as his account with Vine - were broken into by OurMine Security, the same group that hacked Zuckerberg, and has done the same to Google leader Sundar Pichai. Once inside, the invaders posted but a handful of videos claiming that they were "testing your security".
"We don't comment on individual accounts for privacy and security reasons," said Twitter in a statement. "#FML #WTF #pwned ¯\_( )_/¯," they added, probably.
Spot of bother
The recent Euro 2016 tournament in France may have delivered a surprising and, for many, disappointing winner. Portugal were no-one's favourites going into the competition, but the organised Iberians triumphed against the odds as the more fancied teams all failed to deliver on their pre-tournament promise.
But, as is so often the case, our robot friends have succeeded where humanity is so clearly failing. The recent Robot Football World Cup provided a comfortingly comprehensible result: the Germans won on penalties.
The tournament was hosted in the German city of Leipzig and saw teams of five automatons playing against one another in games lasting 20 minutes. After the group stages and early knockout rounds sorted the robowheat from the robochaff, the final pitted the B-Human outfit developed by the University of Bremen against the Austin Villa team from the University of Texas.
After a tense encounter, the match finished goalless, and thus went to penalty shootout, wherein the Germans triumphed 3-0 to lift the trophy. The US players were left distraught, particularly the penalty-missing duo Gareth Souhtbot and CR15 WAD-L.
Going for a song
Gone are the days of vanilla lift music soundtracking trade conferences. Banished too are ear-splittingly loud renditions of I Gotta Feeling from the Black Eyed Peas before the execs shuffle uncomfortably on stage to give their keynotes. Shiz just got serious for trade group Synaxon, which has only gone and launched its own music to play at its events and possibly even further afield, should demand be there.
Speaking at its recent UK event, head honcho Derek Jones proudly said: "This is now the official Synaxon theme tune". We are sure it will go down in history and will be hummed alongside earworms such as Corrie and The Archers in years to come. Probably.
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