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Farewell, Internet

Well, here we are. More than four years after launching, Switched and DownloadSquad are unfortunately being closed. I've been thrilled to work at these two sites that have expanded tech coverage beyond the usual gadgets and social networks to cooking, culture, design, art and more. It's been humbling to work with these incredibly dedicated and talented teams of writers, and it would have been...

Swedish File Sharers Get Religious About Stealing

Swedish philosophy student Isaac Gerson thinks that file sharing is sacred. The 19-year-old leader of the Missionary Church of Kopimism believes that stealing and sharing are signs of appreciation, and has compared closed-source software to slavery. Last year, Sweden rejected the church's application to be recognized as a religion, but Gerson isn't giving up so easily. He'll be reapplying after...

As Expected, Smartphones and Social Networks Targeted by Malware

As security firms have been warning for some time, malware attacks are now more frequently focused on social networks and mobile devices. In Symantec's latest Internet Security Threat Report, the company noted that the number of malware attacks delivered through the Web practically doubled from 2009, with 65-percent of malicious links on Facebook arriving in the form of shortened URLs. The...

Steve Jobs Approves New Bio to Be Published in 2012

Steve Jobs has finally given his seal of approval to a new book about his life. Walter Isaacson's 'iSteve: The Book of Jobs' is slated for release in early 2012, marking the first time that the Apple CEO has participated in a biography. Isaacson, who has been working on the book since 2009, reportedly interviewed members of Jobs' family, his colleagues at Apple and, of course, the man himself....

Switched's Comprehensive Guide to Video Game Emulators

The video game emulator -- the bit of software that allows nostalgic button-mashers to mount an NES on their PCs in order to relive halcyon "HADOUKEN!" days -- is one of the most misunderstood elements of modern computing. But we're here to tell you exactly what they are, how they work, and even offer a comprehensive directory of the best ones for your favorite platform. Read on for our...

Students Create Smartphone App Capable of Detecting Malaria

A group of grad students has come up with a way to instantly diagnose malaria, using only a smartphone and some fancy software. The team, comprised of students from around the nation, developed the prototype using a Samsung Focus smartphone, running Windows 7. After adding a microscopic camera lens to the phone, the students developed software capable of analyzing and scanning blood for...

Geminoids Meet Their Meaty Doppelgangers

Which ones are the humans and which are the robots? We're not even sure the participants in this terrifying photo op know the answer to that question. Three nightmarish Geminoids were brought together with the flesh bags they were modeled after, presumably so the 'bots could learn a bit more about their human counterparts before murdering them and taking their place in life....

GameStop Unveils New Facebook Store

GameStop opened a new store today on Facebook. The shop, accessible via GameStop's Facebook page, allows users to purchase games online, read product reviews, watch trailers and find nearby GameStop outlets. Fans of the retailer can also "like" and share specific games on Facebook, and earn points via GameStop's customer loyalty program. Today's launch is just the latest in a series of...

A Baker's Dozen Tips for Spring Cleaning Your Mac

Whether you're a recent convert, ambivalent veteran or one of those hardened Apple fanboys, let us remind you: a Mac, like any other computer, needs to be maintained. No, you probably don't need anti-virus software (yet), you may never have to fiddle with registry editing, and you'll likely never need to reinstall the operating system. But you may face a kernel panic, a raft of mysterious app...

New Dating Site Blurs the Line Between Capitalism and Prostitution

Somewhere near the intersection of online dating and unabashed prostitution is where you can find WhatsYourPrice.com -- a new dating site where cash trumps compatibility. Site founder Brandon Wade compares WhatsYourPrice.com to eBay. "When you see a hot single you want to date, just make an offer and buy the first date," Wade explains, in a press release. But that's where the similarities...

Dish Network Buys What's Left of Blockbuster

Dish Network has agreed to buy Blockbuster more than six months after the movie rental chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Dish "won" a bankruptcy court auction for the company, with a winning bid of $320 million, although negotiations pushed the final price down to a paltry $228 million. Tom Cullen, Dish Network's executive vice president of sales, marketing and programming, says his goal is...

David Bowie's 'Golden Years' to be Rereleased as Remixable iOS App

David Bowie's 'Golden Years,' from his classic album 'Station to Station,' is coming to the Apple App Store on June 6th. You'll have the ability to remix the song by manipulating eight of the original instrument tracks, including vocals, guitar and percussion. Users will even be able to export their mixes as MP3s and share them with friends. Bowie released a similar edition of 'Space...

Royal Wedding Won't Be Filmed in 3-D, We Cry Lifelike Tears of Sorrow

The royal wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William is swelling to an unceasing, deafening and overexposed roar. We Yanks have been barraged with imitation wedding rings, iTunes soundtracks of the event and commemorative plates galore (SO. MANY. COMMEMORATIVE. PLATES.) But one sensory assault we won't have to endure is the hyperreal 3-D experience, despite the fact that the Queen Mother is...

Professor Shuts Student's Laptop in Class, Gets Arrested for Assault

A professor at Georgia's Valdosta State University was arrested on assault charges last week, after shutting a laptop on a student's hand. Frank J. Rybicki, an assistant professor of media studies, reportedly became angry with a female student who seemed to be surfing the Web on her laptop rather than paying attention to class. Frustrated, he shut the laptop and dismissed the student, who...

Apple, Intel Vow to Stop Using Conflict Minerals From Africa

Apple and Intel have both decided to stop using conflict minerals to manufacture products, as part of the Conflict-Free Smelter program. Conflict minerals include valuable commodities such as gold, titanium, tungsten and tin, which generate massive revenues used to fund wars in Central Africa, and, more specifically, in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Beginning next year, all U.S....