Travel

Travel

Europe’s hidden coasts: the Maremma, Italy

This stretch of southern Tuscany is chic but discreet – disappear into the dunes, discover beguiling coves and stay on rambling estates amid stunning scenery

Italians were born for beaches. Summer means serried rows of sunbeds and regimented beach games. It’s all about bonding and strutting your stuff in matching tangerine mankinis.

But relax: it’s not all like that. Southern Tuscany makes a more stylish splash. Sugary sands are framed by pine groves and low-slung hills, revealing serene, post-impressionist landscapes. In the Maremma, south of Grosseto, set designers are seemingly in charge of the sunsets and rosemary-scented scrubland running down to the sea.

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Architecture

Celine Dion performed ‘My Heart Will Go On’ at the Billboard Awards and the internet cried an ocean of tears

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Few songs stick to film’s as firmly as Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” to the 1997 Academy Award-winning Titanic.

In honor of the film’s 20th anniversary, Dion took the stage at the 2017 Billboard Music Awards Sunday night in Las Vegas to belt out her iconic hit.

After an introduction from Lea Michele, Dion appeared inside a massive floor-to-ceiling chandelier in a bright white dress while clips of Titanic played on the screen. 

💎💙💎💙💎💙💎💙💎#MyHeartWillGoOn +@celinedion +#BBMAs
EVERYONE RN =😭😭😭 pic.twitter.com/XpH9HDBMgM

— BillboardMusicAwards (@BBMAs) May 22, 2017 Read more…

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Lifestyle

How to post Google Photos’ awesome animations to Instagram

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If you use Google Photos, you know the service is so much more than just the best way to store and back up all your photos and videos into the cloud.

Using advanced machine learning, Google Photos can intelligently identify people, places, and things — and it’s all easily searchable. One of the cooler things in Google Photos is the Assistant (not to be confused with Google’s other Assistant on Android and Google Home).

In the Google Photos app on iOS and Android, the Assistant is a card-based panel that does three things:

  1. Shows you the status of your backup.

  2. Automatically creates “movies” based on related video clips.

  3. Creates “animations” using batches of bursted photos. (You can also create your own animations by manually selecting between 2-50 photos, but the end result is the same — you still get a GIF file.) Read more…

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Travel

Europe’s hidden coasts: the Deep Mani, Greece

Few tourists venture beyond the Mani’s spectacular Diros caves, but further south lies a dramatic coastline of sleepy fishing coves and fortified villages

The Mani, the central southern prong of mainland Greece, is divided into two halves. The Outer Mani, with the pretty coastal villages of Kardamyli and Stoupa, is now well known for offering a more authentic holiday experience than many of the islands. The Deep Mani, further south, is a different prospect, with its rugged coastline broken by only the occasional cove. Far fewer people visit here, and even fewer stay.

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Architecture

Microsoft Research shows off its augmented reality glasses

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Because we’re spoiled and don’t appreciate amazing technology unless it’s immediately convenient, some tech pundits are dismissing VR in favor of AR, but the fact is that we’re still years away from easy to use AR glasses. For now, mainstream AR is limited to your smartphone, like most other apps. 

However, a team at Microsoft Research is looking to speed up the progress on wearable AR devices and have introduced a prototype as proof. 

Before Snap can turn its Spectacles wearable camera into a vehicle for its augmented reality app filters, Microsoft’s team presented a pair of glasses on Friday that use near-eye displays to produce holograms to the wearer.  Read more…

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Travel

Europe’s hidden coasts: Costa Maresme, Spain

The coast just north of Barcelona is often overlooked by visitors. But with miles of sandy beach, great restaurants and a coast-hugging train, it’s a perfect escape

I love Barcelona but sometimes you have got to get out of town. Sitges? Lovely, but it can be as rammed as the Ramblas. The Pyrenees? Yes, but in summer I need a beach! OK then, the Costa Brava. But have you seen the queue of cars down to the “secret” beach that only grandma Lola knows about?

Hmm, perhaps the city’s not so bad. Barceloneta beach is just 10 minutes from the centre and there’s at least 10 square centimetres of sand per person.

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Architecture

Anderson Cooper DGAF, literally talks about Trump taking a dump on his desk

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We’ve all marveled at Anderson Cooper’s brutal eye roll. But now he’s slinging some serious … well, you’ll see. 

On Friday, the Coop was talking with conservative commentator Jeffrey Lord. The topic, naturally, was the news that Donald Trump told Russian officials at the Oval Office that firing that “nut job” James Comey took pressure off the FBI’s investigation. 

“I don’t care what he says to the Russians. I mean, he’s the president of the United States,” Lord said. 

Then Cooper responded with this:

Yes, he said, “If he took a dump on his desk, you would defend it.” Read more…

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Lifestyle

The only thing worse than the fidget spinner craze is fidget spinner apps

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In a matter of weeks, fidget spinners went from something almost nobody had ever heard of to the must-have toy of the season. The anxiety-reducing handheld spinners are so ubiquitous that dozens of developers are trying to cash in on the phenomenon with fidget-spinner themed mobile apps.

People are into it, apparently. So into it that the top game in the iOS app store is a virtual fidget spinner that doesn’t do anything but spin.

The app is called Finger Spinner and it lets you swipe a virtual fidget spinner. You get five swipes to get it to spin as many times as possible, and you earn coins based on how many spins you get. The coins are used to improve the stats of your spinner, and spinning unlocks new spinners that all act the same but are aesthetically different. Read more…

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Travel

Europe’s hidden coasts: the Côte d’Argent, Landes, France

This wild Atlantic coast, south-west of Bordeaux, is backed by forests and nature reserves and includes the finest sandy beach in France. Yet even in mid-summer you can have it to yourself

Halfway between the great sand dune of Pyla and the posh surf and golf resort of Hossegor, is the finest stretch of sandy beach in France. South-west of Bordeaux, the Côte d’Argent begins at Mimizan Plage, where a river splits the beach in two.

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Architecture

Badass little otter pup is a survivor, he gonna make it

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Https%3a%2f%2fvdist.aws.mashable.com%2fcms%2f2017%2f5%2f0f9dc8c2 4bf5 d504%2fthumb%2f00001 Read more…

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Lifestyle

YouTube expands mobile livestreaming capabilities to more users

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YouTube is making it even easier for people to livestream from their mobile devices (as if we needed another way to share our lives in real time.)

Android Police reported on Wednesday that YouTube is making livestreaming accessible to more users by doing away with the “1,000 subscriber or more” requirement to utilize the feature. Now, users with a subscriber base of any size can use the livestreaming feature.

YouTube originally had a requirement of 10,000 subscribers for users to go live on a tablet or mobile device, which was pretty demanding for the ordinary user. Then, back in April, the platform relaxed the requirement to 1,000 to better cater to anyone who wasn’t a major brand or viral vlogger with a massive following. Read more…

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Travel

Europe’s hidden coasts: Costa de Prata, Portugal

Central Portugal’s pristine beaches are pounded by the Atlantic and dotted with simple restaurants, but barely touched by tourists, making it a haven for those who crave space – and great seafood

Theo and I saunter along the road from Aveiro that crosses its wide, shiny, tame lagoon, and arrive in north Africa, or so it seems. We find scissored-leaf palm trees and heavy white sand dunes on the march, and the relentless wild rumble and roar of the unquiet Atlantic.

Portugal’s Centro region is baffling. It’s between Lisbon and Porto, thus easy to get to and easy to get around. It has peerless beaches, a treasury of gorgeous historic towns and villages, and endlessly lovely people. The pristine coastline, horizons and skies go on forever. Yet there’s almost nobody here. This isn’t spooky: indeed we feel privileged, transported to earlier, more innocent times when Theo was a kid and I was a new, naive dad. So we spend timeless days basking in the richness of space, and soaking in the luxury of simplicity.

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Architecture

Police release cringeworthy video telling kids not to buy drugs

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We’re not sure what’s in the water Down Under, but Australian police like to try and outdo each other by having the country’s weirdest social media presence.

While you might have seen the Nickelback-hating work of the Queensland Police, Northern Territory Police is here to throw its hat in the ring with an ’80s-style safety video for the upcoming Darwin festival, Bass In The Grass.

It’s chockful of VHS-esque filters, throwback graphics, and of course, really, really bad acting. The video is definitely cringeworthy, but we think they were totally going for that.  Read more…

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Lifestyle

Hey, Siri, Google Assistant is coming to the iPhone — and it’s getting smarter

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Google’s Assistant isn’t just for Pixel phones anymore.

The company’s digital helper will soon be available for iPhones too, Google’s Scott Huffman announced during the keynote presentation at its I/O developer conference Wednesday. 

But the entry into the iPhone isn’t the only update for Assistant, as Google brings the AI into even more devices. The smart assistant is also getting much, much smarter. 

Of course, there will be some limits to the assistant’s capabilities on iOS, since it’s not embedded at the operating system level as it is with Android. The move to the iOS wasn’t totally unexpected, either — a source leaked the news yesterday. Read more…

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Travel

Dreamland Margate reopens (again) after £25m revamp

The 2015 relaunch of the 1920s amusement park proved disappointing to both investors and visitors. Now it has high hopes for its latest incarnation, with new rides, bars and food stalls, and a live music venue

It was hailed as the revival of a seaside mecca that would consolidate Margate’s regeneration, but the fanfare around the reopening of the town’s retro amusement park in 2015 soon fizzled out. Barely one year on, Dreamland was in administration. Now, following a £25m investment, and under a new management team, the attraction is preparing to reopen for a second time, promising a radically different experience.

Dreamland’s second relaunch, just in time for the May bank holiday weekend, will showcase new rides, new landscaping, modern art installations and a better food offering, all of which its management team hope will transform its fortunes.

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Architecture

Fox News’ Tucker Carlson will do absolutely anything to avoid talking about the Trump fiasco

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Did Donald Trump really ask FBI Director James Comey to shut down his Russia investigation? 

Is this story real? Are you real? What is reality? 

Tucker Carlson of Fox News is asking these tough questions. 

Tucker’s lead at 8 pic.twitter.com/ZldaSJVtwC

— Josh Kraushaar (@HotlineJosh) May 17, 2017

If it seems like he’s avoiding the news that the president of the United States may be engaged of obstruction of justice, don’t be fooledTucker Carlson Tonight looks beyond Beltway politics to answer the big, existential questions.

Tucker Carlson nailed it tonight, you guyspic.twitter.com/onRIdGjBF2

— Molly Knight (@molly_knight) May 17, 2017 Read more…

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Lifestyle

Siri rumored to get new competition — right on your iPhone

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Move over, Siri: your iPhone might soon welcome another AI assistant into the iOS fold. 

Google could throw the smartphone world for a loop at this week’s I/O developers conference and unveil new Google Assistant functionality for the iPhone, according to Bloomberg. The report, which cites “a person familiar with the matter,” claims the Assistant-to-iOS news could be announced as early as the first day of the event.   

Assistant will come to the iPhone in the form of a free iOS app, the source said, and will depend on voice commands to work with other Google apps installed on users’ phones. You’ll presumably be able to ask Assistant to queue up videos on YouTube or even read off emails from Inbox, to name a few potential uses.  Read more…

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Travel

Top 10 restaurants and tapas bars in Huelva, Spain

A byword for great produce, this small city in Andalucía with 200 restaurants is Spain’s gastronomy capital for 2017. Picking 10 of the best is no mean feat

Xanty Elias is the city’s culinary A-lister. Having trained for two years at San Sebastián’s three-starred Arzak, he returned home and quickly gained Huelva’s sole Michelin star. Changing six-monthly, his two fine-dining tasting menus include palate-thrilling dishes like beef sirloin (solomillo) with spiced lard, and tangy, mustardy mackerel with tender lupini beans. Each course can be paired with local wines, sherries or vermouths. The current 525 Sinergias menu marks the fact that 2017 is the 525th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’s first voyage to America (the explorer departed from a port a few miles south of Huelva) and uses ingredients brought to Europe for the first time following Columbus’ expedition.
Eight-course menus from €48 without wine, Calle San Salvador 17, +34 959 245135, acanthum.com

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Architecture

Bill Gates’ wise tweetstorm will inspire new grads

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Personal advice from one of the biggest business icons in all of tech history is difficult to come by, but Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is making it easy for newly minted college graduates via Twitter. 

On Monday, just a week before the graduation ceremonies at Harvard, the school he famously dropped out of to create Microsoft, Gates offered his pearls of wisdom to new college graduates around the country. 

Beginning with a reference to the classic film The Graduate about giving market trend advice to newbies (plastics!), Gates launches into his tweetstorm by first noting the areas he thinks we should be focused on in the coming years.    Read more…

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Travel

10 of the best Irish bars in New York

A New York Irish pub may have been voted best bar in the world – and be making an appearance in London this summer – but ‘old country’ boozers are in decline in the city. We raise a glass to both the classics and those reviving the tradition

In some New York neighbourhoods every other bar seems to be either Irish-themed or Irish-owned. In a city that remains the spiritual home of the Great Irish Bar, the challenge becomes how to sort the genuine from the fake. There are plenty of shamrock-ed bars to drink in, with all kinds of Blarney-fied names, but links to the “old country” are often flimsy.

It’s partly for this reason that the Irish bar in New York is in decline, a social staple being squeezed out as Guinness sales fall in favour of American craft beers and diners move away from traditional bar grub to more gastropub food, along with the usual cycle of rent increases and gentrification. Some say the traditional Irish New York pub is simply falling out of fashion; others argue that a vibrant new generation is emerging. Here, then, is a personal Manhattan top 10 that exemplifies both the survival and the revival of the great New York Irish Bar.

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