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Fast Company
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4 Ways Developers Say Apple Can Improve The Mac App Store

We asked some successful developers how Apple can improve the Mac App Store.

Tim Cook: "I Consider Being Gay Among The Greatest Gifts God Has Given Me"

"While I have never denied my sexuality, I haven't publicly acknowledged it either, until now. So let me be clear: I'm proud to be gay."

In an op-ed published Thursday in Bloomberg Businessweek, Apple CEO Tim Cook, the most powerful man in technology, wrote the following:

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How An Ex-Inmate's Startup Is Improving Prisoners' Lives

With Pigeonly, Frederick Hutson is using technology to keep convicts connected to friends and family--and maybe turn their lives around.

Entrepreneurs often tap personal experience for startup ideas. In Frederick Hutson's case, that experience was incarceration. "I just saw so many inefficiencies when I was in prison," he says. "The way the system worked was archaic. There was obviously a problem. I knew technology had advanced far ahead on the outside, but no one has built anything to address it."

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Troy Carter's Hard-Won Tips For Handling Career Road Bumps

Renowned music manager Troy Carter shares how unexpected change can make your business--and your brand--stronger than ever.

If you ever think you're having a professional setback from which you'll never recover, consider the story of Troy Carter. After nearly seven years building the phenomenon that is Lady Gaga, he was unceremoniously fired as her manager in 2013. And that was the second time he was dumped by a successful, high-profile client.

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Just Watch It: The History Of Nike In 3 Minutes

From The Swoosh to sweatshops, see how the world's biggest sports brand stays on top.

The team behind Portland-based Nike's marketing has been coming up with innovative ads since 23-year-old graphic designer Carolyn Davidson invented The Swoosh in 1971 (she was paid $35, but don't worry, she received stock options later). Watch the video above to see the evolution of the sports brand named after a victorious goddess, from the very first "Just Do It" ad to the crowning of His Airness, Michael Jordan.

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How To Solve The Anti-Photoshopping Movement's Big Problem

Why brands are going beyond retouching to create body-positive messages.

After receiving her Art History degree from Wellesley College in the late '90s, Eunice Gomes headed to the Big Apple in search of a career that would put her creative skills to work. She landed in the fashion world, carving out a place for herself in the nascent field of digital retouching. Using newly developed Photoshop software, she edited images for brands like Calvin Klein, Balenciaga, and Ralph Lauren, and photo spreads for magazines like Vanity Fair, Allure, and Glamour.

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Finding Stuff To Read In Flipboard Just Got A Whole Lot Easier

The social reader app adds new algorithmic smarts, with help from a former competitor.

Once upon a time, there were two clever personalized magazine apps for tablets and phones. Flipboard found most of the things it showed you by pulling them in from online sources you specified yourself, along with links shared on your social networks. Its arch-rival Zite took a different approach which required less work on your part: You picked general topics, and the app used an algorithm to find relevant articles from all over the web.

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New Twitter App Detects Suicidal Tweets, Sends Alerts To Followers

If someone you follow is tweeting messages of distress or suicidal thoughts, Samaritan Radar will email you.

Samaritans, a U.K.-based suicide prevention charity, has released Samaritans Radar, a new web app that will monitor a user's Twitter feed and alert them if someone they follow seems to be in need.

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CurrentC Notifies Users That It Suffered An Email Breach

"Within the last 36 hours, we learned that unauthorized third parties obtained the e-mail addresses of some of you."

CurrentC, the mobile payment format retailers like Rite Aid, CVS, and Walmart are contractually obligated to use in lieu of Apple Pay, hit another stumble today. MacRumors reports that the consortium of businesses behind the payment platform, the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX), experienced an email breach at some point in the last 36 hours, per a notice sent out to people who have signed up for the pilot program. (CurrentC isn't set to hit stores until 2015.)

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IBM, Twitter: The New Business Intelligence Best Buddies

IBM is turning tweets into business intelligence, thanks to a massive new agreement with Twitter.

Business intelligence is a massive, massive industry where organizations pay tens of millions of dollars to turn raw data about them and their competitors into actionable insights. Now IBM and Twitter are getting in on the game, and launching a portfolio of data analysis tools aimed toward retail, consumer products, transportation, banking, and other industries.

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SodaStream Will Close Its West Bank Factory In 2015

But the company insists it is not bowing to pressure from activists.

SodaStream will shutter its West Bank facility and move the manufacturing of its home-carbonation machines to a new factory in Israel's southern Negev region in 2015.

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Poynt: A Universal Checkstand For Mobile Payments

Google Wallet. Apple Pay. QR codes. Who will win? Who cares?

Apple Pay. Google Wallet. Square. Paypal. Affirm. Coin. Plastc. Visa. Mastercard. Chase. Capital One. Everybody wants to collect a toll on the post-credit-card future of payments. They all use differing standards and technologies.But who will win?

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Google Moves Into Fitness Market With New Fit App

Google Fit works much like Samsung's and Apple's health apps.

This week Google joined Samsung and Apple in the fitness app club with the release of Google Fit.

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The Guardian Rolls Out A Redesign, With Input From Thousands Of Readers

The Guardian's new design joins the rest of us here in 2014. It's about time.

It seems like all the major magazines and newspapers are redesigning their websites lately. First it was The New York Times, then the New Yorker. Now the Guardian is getting in on the action with a bigger, bolder, more reader-friendly design--informed, in part, by Guardian readers themselves.

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These Are The Products You Can Finance On Reddit's New Crowdfunding Platform

Redditmade is designed for subreddits to create merch for their communities. But there isn't much to look at yet.

Like a nebula belching a new star into life, the sprawling web community Reddit today announced a new Kickstarter-like crowdfunding platform so that users can get their projects financed. Redditmade is, according to Reddit marketing manager Kaela Gardner, "a new place to turn the best designs and products by the community into reality." Why dive into the messy, often disappointing fray of crowdfunded products? Here's how Gardner explains it:

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HP's Sprout Is A Bold Attempt to Reimagine The Desktop PC

The "immersive computer" is bursting at the seams with new ideas, from 3-D scanning to augmented reality.

When was the last time you saw a desktop PC that did something truly new?

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The Reason CVS And Rite Aid Won't Take Apple Pay? Contracts

A large consortium of retailers are reportedly bound from using other mobile payment systems in favor of a standard called CurrentC.

When CVS and Rite Aid quietly pulled the plug on Apple Pay, the iPhone's new wireless payment wallet, over the weekend, it left customers confused. (Or with a bad taste in their mouths.) Word was, the sudden rift with Apple had something to do with CurrentC, a QR code-based payment standard that hasn't even debuted in stores yet.

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This Cheap Paper Test Can Tell You If You Have Ebola In Just 30 Minutes

A pocket-sized paper test for Ebola quickly turns from yellow to purple if someone has the disease--and no lab or refrigeration is required.

Within about 30 minutes, and without ever going to a lab, a new paper tool can tell if someone has Ebola. The current test goes much slower and requires a lab and electricity. Using a new synthetic biology technique, researchers have eliminated all those concerns and made the pocket-sized test, which can be shipped anywhere in the world and stored without refrigeration. It's both cheaper and much faster than any current Ebola tests.

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Try Windows 93: The Hilarious OS That Never Was

Somewhere between Windows 3.1 and Windows 95 lives this very odd, very funny art project that you can try in your browser.

If you didn't live through the jump, it can be hard to describe the cultural revolution between Windows 3.1 and Windows 95. Its taskbar ussured in an era of "multitasking"; its built-in web browser put the world's information at your fingertips; its "Start" menu, complete with its own ~$10 million Rolling Stones song, was pure optimism rendered in bits.

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How The NBA Fixed Its Instant Replay Problem

This season, the league launches a $15 million experiment in real-time video splicing.

Last season, NBA games were interrupted 1,800 times by this familiar scene:

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Why Artist Olafur Eliasson Hauled 100-Tons Of Glacial Ice To Denmark Only To Watch It Melt

His latest sculpture only lasted four days, and that was kind of the point.

One hundred tons of glacial ice is currently melting in front of Copenhagen's city hall. The 12 huge chunks of ancient ice--fished out of a fjord in Greenland by divers and then carefully shipped in refrigerated containers to Denmark--were brought in by artist Olafur Eliasson and geologist Minik Rosing as a physical reminder of climate change.

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These Are The 10 Most Popular Cities In The U.S. (For Rats)

And, surprise, New York is not even No. 1 (or 2 or 3) on the list.

The possibility of contracting Ebola in an American city has now dominated headlines, dinner conversations, and Twitter for more than a week. Still, the chances of catching it are minuscule (like one in more than 13 million). Perhaps city dwellers should worry more about rats.

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Want To Buy A Historic Fashion Label? Now's Your Chance!

The legacy of the French designer who gave us harem pants is up for grabs.

Luxurious, loose-fitting gowns by famed designer Paul Poiret have been off the market for over 80 years, but that isn't stopping a French entrepreneur who specializes in reviving defunct fashion labels from selling off rights to the Poiret brand in an unusual online auction.

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Ikea's 5-Minute Furniture Really Takes 17 Minutes To Build

Just don't use your smartphone for the hammering, okay?

Not long ago, we wrote about Ikea's new Regissör line of furniture, which in addition to requiring no screws or tools, came with the promise that it could be built in just five minutes. Sure, it seemed unbelievable, but boy did we want to believe.

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The Architecture Of Fear: How To Design A Truly Terrifying Haunted House

We chat with the designers behind one of the scariest haunted houses in America.

Every autumn, millions of Americans flock to haunted houses, happily willing to pay $20 or $30 to get petrified out of their wits. Scaring people is no amateur game: haunted houses make up a $300 million industry in the U.S. But there are only so many ways you can startle someone effectively (check out some DIY ideas here). So how do big-name haunted houses keep scaring customers year after year?

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