Tag Archives: Windows 10

Apple won't explain why some of its new MacBook Pros are making a weird popping noise (AAPL)

macbook pro 2016 touch bar 15 inch

Many MacBook Pro owners are complaining that their high-end laptops are making a weird “popping” noise — and Apple isn’t saying why.

Earlier this month, reports started circulating about the problem. Owners of the new MacBook Pro, released in 2016, say they’re hearing a strange noise coming from their devices intermittently.

The issue appears to be primarily affecting 15-inch MacBook Pros, though there have been reports of it happening to the 13-inch MacBook Pro too. It’s also not clear exactly how many people are affected, though the issue seems to relatively widespread.

There are numerous support forum threads from disgruntled customers online, and after I wrote about the problem two weeks ago nearly half a dozen people emailed me to say their laptops were also affected.

Apple, meanwhile, is staying silent. When I first reached out to the company’s comms team, a spokesperson said they’d get back to me. After I followed up earlier this week, they said that they’ve got “nothing to add.”

In the absence of public comment from Apple, affected users have been left guessing at the possible cause. Some are pointing to heat or thermal expansion of components as a potential reason, noting that it happens when their laptops are under stress.

One affected owner said in an email they thought it “didn’t seem like anything major to me,” but they had “bought a separate hard drive to back everything up [in case] something bad happens. If it gets worse I’ll certainly have no choice but to contact them, for whatever good it might do.”

macbook pro touch barAnother said it “randomly” happens “everyday” and is “super annoying.”

A third MacBook Pro owner said it happens “multiple times a day. Notably when i open the laptop — usually after about 30ish seconds, but not every time. And then every 20-100 minutes after that.” It’s about as loud “as a trackpad click.”

Users also say they’re getting mixed messages from Apple’s customer services team. A poster in an Apple support forum thread wrote that when they took their device to Apple’s Genius Bar customer service team, a dent on the bottom of their MacBook Pro was blamed, and they had to pay $130 to get it fixed. (Others say their devices are popping even when there’s no dent present.)

But a poster on Twitter said after they took their MacBook Pro back to Apple, the company replaced it with one that didn’t make any weird noises. Another wrote on a support forum they were “working with AppleCare and Engineering now” to try and pin down the problem.

There are loads of videos online capturing the noise, like this one:

For now, there’s no hard evidence that the popping sound is evidence of a deeper problem — but it’s easy to see why it might be alarming to someone who has spent upwards of $2,399 (or £2,349) for their shiny new 15-inch MacBook Pro.

If in doubt, it might be wise to talk to Apple Support just in case.

Is your MacBook Pro playing up? Get in touch: rprice@businessinsider.com

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There's a bizarre loophole you have to jump through when booking an Airbnb in Cuba

Cuba Ally

BERLIN — If you’re planning to visit Cuba in the near future and you want to use Airbnb, you’ll quickly realise there’s a bizarre loophole you have to jump through in order to make your booking.

When requesting to book an Airbnb in Cuba, you must specify your “purpose of travel” and confirm that you “satisfy criteria for a general license for travel to Cuba”.

This “license” was established for Americans travelling to Cuba but non-US citizens also have to say that they satisfy the requirements if they want to use Airbnb in Cuba. You’ll be presented with a drop down menu of 12 “activities” that your license can fall under, with activities including “Official Government Business”, “Support for the Cuban people”, and “Religious”.

I experienced this first hand earlier this year when I was trying to book some Airbnbs in Cuba for a trip that I just returned from. The experience left me feeling confused and unsure about whether I could legally use Airbnb in Cuba.

Airbnb CubaA PR spokesperson failed to clear up the matter for me in February so I asked Nathan Blecharczyk, Airbnb’s cofounder, during a Q&A session in Berlin last month.

It’s “a little complicated,” Blecharczyk replied. “A little over two years ago, Obama took executive action to loosen the restrictions. But he didn’t have the power to completely kill them. So he basically loosened them as much as possible.

Airbnb Nathan“So what can you do do today? Americans can go down there and about a year ago now we got special permission from the Department of Treasury that regulates this stuff, to allow foreigners to come down to Cuba as well. Now legally we’re still required to ask that question.

“According to the restrictions, you’re supposed to only go down there if it’s for one of 12 reasons,” he said. “Of which one is ‘helping the people’. If you’re staying at someone’s home, that’s helping the people.”

The US Treasury states that “support for the Cuban people” includes “activities of recognised human rights organisations; independent organisations designed to promote a rapid, peaceful transition to democracy; and individuals and non-governmental organisations that promote independent activity intended to strengthen civil society in Cuba.”

Blecharczyk added: “Cuba has been ridiculously successful for us. We have about 15,000 homes down there. We’ve seen great interest from Americans and from folks all around the world and it is doing remarkable things for the people.”

Cuba’s relationship with US companies has been a complicated one ever since revolutionary leader Fidel Castro came to power in 1959 but US tech companies like Airbnb and Google are starting to make some inroads.

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NOW WATCH: This man spent 6 weeks working undercover in an iPhone factory in China — here’s what it was like

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Tempow turns your dumb Bluetooth speakers into a connected sound system

 Meet Tempow, a French startup that can make your Bluetooth speakers more versatile. The company has been working on a new implementation of the Bluetooth protocol in order to let you play music from your phone on multiple speakers and headphones at once. Bluetooth speakers have become a common gift and a hit item in consumer electronics stores. Most people now have multiple Bluetooth speakers… Read More

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An Oxford professor gives 3 reasons why eating alone at restaurants is becoming more acceptable

Business Insider spoke with Professor Charles Spence, Head of Crossmodal Research Laboratory at Oxford University and author of “Gastrophysics, The New Science of Eating,” about why it’s becoming more acceptable to eat alone at restaurants. 

He said: “Part of the reason why it’s becoming more acceptable to dine alone is because you have your own entertainment, you have your smartphones. Maybe you’re as busy taking pictures of your food then you are actually eating it.”

He also cited that restaurateurs are realising there’s a gap in the market so they’re trying to cater to the solo diner. Some ways they do this is by having chef tables or specific tables meant just for one person. 

Produced by David Ibekwe. Filmed by Leon Siciliano

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Mark Cuban is backing an app that's trying to help people avoid overdraft fees

mark cuban

Mark Cuban was crushed with overdraft fees in his 20s. Now he’s backing an app that’s trying to help people avoid having to pay them.

The billionaire has invested in a new app called Dave that aims to predict coming expenses for users to help prevent them from overdrafting on their bank accounts.

Once Dave connects with a user’s checking account it forecasts the account’s lowest possible balance in seven days based off the person’s spending habits.

Users are notified when their seven-day forecast is negative. That way they can be proactive and potentially avoid overdrafting and being burdened with bank fees.

“Your available balance doesn’t represent how much a person can spend,” Dave’s CEO, Jason Wilk, told Business Insider. “It may say you have $1,000, but if your Netflix bill and rent are due in a couple days, then you don’t actually have a $1,000.”

According to a report by CNN Money, the top big banks — Chase, Wells Fargo, and Bank of America — raked in over $5 billion in ATM and overdraft fees in 2016. In total, overdrafts cost customers $36 billion a year.

Overdraft fees hit close to home for Cuban.

“I got crushed by overdraft fees in my 20s,” Cuban said in a news release. “For anyone who wants to be successful, I always advise to cut down on useless expenses and save money. Overdraft fees are the definition of useless.”

Dave also allows users to borrow cash if their balance gets low. Users who have a negative seven-day balance can borrow up to $250 of their coming paycheck to cover expenses.

“We named the company Dave, because we wanted people to think of the app as a friend they can turn to when they’re in a financial bind,” Wilk told Business Insider.

Dave doesn’t make any money from the borrowing service aside from optional donations requested by the firm. It does, however, charge a $1 monthly fee to use the app, which is available to download now on iPhone and Android.

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NOW WATCH: SCOTT GALLOWAY: Investing in Snap is something ‘no one responsible should ever do’

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Snapchat is stifled by its un-algorithmic feed

 Snapchat invented its best products by being the anti-Facebook. Its disappearing chats made visual communication quick and casual compared to Facebook’s email-esque text messages. Stories ditched the likes and permanacy so you could share your raw moments in the now, instead of just the life highlights that define you forever on your Facebook Timeline. Read More

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The top 15 organizations business majors want to work for after graduation

Google employee headphones

Where do business students want to work these days?

To find out, Universum, a global research and advisory firm, surveyed 81,102 students from 359 universities in the US about their views on employers.

Out of those respondents, 26,809 were studying business.

Universum ranked a number of well-known companies (and a few governmental agencies), based on the percentage of business students who reported that they’d want to work for the organization.

Here are the top 15 organizations that business students have their eyes on:

SEE ALSO: The 5 best fields for recent grads to find a job right now

15. Microsoft

Microsoft is an American tech company based in Redmond, California.

Percentage of business students who want to work there: 6.16%

14. Patagonia

Patagonia is an outdoor clothing brand that was founded in 1973.

Percentage of business students who want to work there: 6.17%

13. PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers)

One of the “Big Four” accounting firms, PwC is based in London.

Percentage of business students who want to work there: 6.61%

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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The director of 'The Circle' explains why the movie makes huge changes from the book

The Circle

“Kill Your Darlings” is a phrase often used in the world of writing and movies. Made famous by William Faulkner, it refers to deleting material that’s near and dear to the creator’s heart for the sake of making their story better.

It’s something writer-director James Ponsoldt (“The End of the Tour”) knows all too well after adapting to the screen Dave Eggers’ popular 2013 novel “The Circle” (in theaters Friday).

“I think any novel that is as ambitious as this one, there was a big unyielding collection of ideas and characters and plots at the start of writing the script,” Ponsoldt told Business Insider a day after the movie had its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival. “I think a very literal adaptation of this book would make for a good miniseries, but for a movie, it was figuring out which characters were absolutely essential.”

A cautionary tale of the all-consuming technology and social media around us, the movie stars Emma Watson as Mae Holland, a idealistic twenty something who finally gets her dream job, working at the powerful tech company The Circle. Dazzled by the “anything is possible” vibe of the campus (think Google), she catches the eye of the company’s co-founders, Eamon Bailey (Tom Hanks) and Tom Stenton (Patton Oswalt), and agrees to take part in the company’s latest big idea — wearing a camera and being 100% transparent to the world all day long. Now having millions of viewers following her every move, Mae becomes a sensation at The Circle and has bigger ideas, ones that bring up questions about privacy and surveillance throughout the world.

The Circle STX EntertainmentLike in the book, Mae is driven to know everything about The Circle and aspires to change the world through its innovations. But fans of the book will find some major tweaks in the movie version. A big one taken out is the love triangle Mae has in the book with fellow Circle employees Francis and the mysterious Kalden.

Instead, the roles were combined into the character of Ty in the movie, played by John Boyega (“Star Wars: The Force Awakens”). Though Ty and Mae seems to have a romantic chemistry, he has more of the Kalden character in him, as Ty is the off-the-grid former wunderkind at the company that reveals to Mae the dark secrets of The Circle.

Ponsoldt said the Francis character was in early drafts of the script, but was lifted as he didn’t feel central to Mae’s evolution at The Circle.

“It felt like to properly do justice to that love triangle you would have been another 45 minutes of screen time,” Ponsoldt said. “There would have been a totally valid movie that focuses on that, but I think the idea of privacy and surveillance are central to the novel and I wanted to explore that.”

To do that, Ponsoldt also changed the tone of the ending. In the book, Mae comes off as unsympathetic about how the ideas she’s come up with about The Circle imposing on people’s privacy, even those close to her, have led to disastrous results. The movie gives a more hopeful ending.

James Ponsoldt Theo Wargo Getty final“I love the ending in the book and in adapting there were a lot of conversations with Dave and with Emma, and it was a feeling that if the audience feels that Mae is purely evil then it becomes too binary or some propaganda film,” Ponsoldt said. “I’m not technophobic, I don’t think technology is inherently bad, I think technology is great. My issue is more with the companies that are bringing us all that great stuff. Why do they have to collect, store, and perhaps monetize our private information? That was the spirit that we wanted to have with the movie and of Emma’s character at the end. She means well, I think, to the very end.”

Ponsoldt wrote the script on spec soon after completing his acclaimed 2015 movie “The End of the Tour.” Following numerous conversations with Eggers, in which Ponsoldt said the author encouraged him to tweak his story for it to work on screen, Tom Hanks and his production company Playtone came on board and helped get the project off the ground.

Ponsoldt is not the first or last writer-director who made sacrifices from a book he loves to get it on screen. But he believes the core of what Eggers tried to get across in book form is in the movie.

“For me, Mae is in many ways the future of where technology is going and we like disrupters coming along and changing the status quo, but it’s also not always for the better,” Ponsoldt said. “I think we can certainly see that with the elections in the UK and the US in the past year, where outside forces disrupt things to disastrous effects. I think the ending of the movie has an ambiguity and one hopes for the best and believes that youthfulness and idealism will make things better, but it doesn’t always work that way.”

 

SEE ALSO: Jenny Slate and Zachary Quinto explain why making movies isn’t always about the money

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I've taken 3 DNA tests that told me about my ancestry — here's how to choose which one to try

Helix DNA 7

I’ve sent my spit off for more genetics tests than anyone else I know.

These tests analyzed my saliva sample to find out a host of different things that my DNA can tell me about my ancestry and health. 

Genetic testing companies have proprietary sets of data and various ways of analyzing information, so each one I tried offered a distinc approach to how they presented my results and what information they gave me. One provided details about my great-grand relatives, while others listed how much Neanderthal DNA I have. 

Every so often, someone asks me which test I recommend. And my answer boils down to one question: What do you want to get out of the test? 

Let’s compare the three direct-to-consumer ones I’ve tried out: AncestryDNA, 23andMe and National Geographic’s Geno 2.0 test. 

23andMe

23andMe kit

23andMe currently offers two versions of its tests: The $199 version comes with health and ancestry components, whereas the $99 version just has the ancestry test.

The health reports can tell you information about your physical traits, (like if you’re likely to have dimples or curly hair), wellness (how well you metabolize caffeine or if you’re a sprinter), and carrier status for certain genetic mutations. In April, the FDA began allowing 23andMe to provide reports on a person’s genetic health risk for certain diseases, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. In total, the test now has more than 74 reports

To analyze your DNA, 23andMe uses a technique called genotyping. Humans have 3 billion base pairs of DNA in our genome — that’s a lot of information to sift through — so genotyping technology looks for specific parts of DNA and pieces them together.

With 23andMe’s ancestry reports, users have access to information about their ancestry composition (which geographic regions your genes most closely align with), haplogroups (genetic populations that share a common ancestor), and Neanderthal ancestry. They also get access to something called a DNA Relatives tool, which 23andMe users can opt into to connect with other users and find out whether they have relatives in the system.

 

Screen Shot 2015 12 17 at 5.54.33 PM

Verdict: If you’re looking at this test as a science experiment, using it as a way to get involved in research, or viewing it as a chance to learn about your genetic health risks, then this is the test for you. And if you just want to know your ancestry percentages and how much Neanderthal variants you have, the $99 version is a good bet. If you do opt for the full test, however, there are some considerations patient groups and genetic counselors would like users to take into account

If you’re primarily interested in retracing your ancestry, though, read on.

AncestryDNA

AncestryDNA test box

Ancestry’s test, as its name suggests, is all about family histories and genealogy. You won’t find health and wellness reports in its $99 test, but you will find information about where your family comes from and how that lineage connects you to potential ancestors. Like 23andMe, Ancestry uses genotyping technology to analyze your DNA. The service also helps you link up your DNA test to a self-reported family tree. 

There’s a lot to discover within that ancestry data — for example, I was matched up with ancestors dating back to the 18th century, and could explore how I was connected to them. 

Screen Shot 2016 03 30 at 4.41.49 PM

If you simply want to know what percent Scandinavian you are, Ancestry’s site makes it easy to focus on those numbers. Those who want to dig deep into your family tree can do that as well. I would definitely consider purchasing this test for a relative who enjoys researching family history.

Verdict: If the idea of tracing your family tree through the generations and connecting with distant relatives gets you excited — but you’re less interested in receiving health information — this is the test for you. 

National Geographic

Helix DNA 1National Geographic has an ancestry test called Geno 2.0.

The test — which currently costs $149.95 but originally was $199.95 — is different from the others in that it uses next-generation sequencing instead of the genotyping technology that AncestryDNA and 23andMe rely on. 

Unlike genotyping, which just looks for specific parts of DNA and pieces them together, next-generation sequencing looks at only the protein-encoding parts of your genome — called the exome. The next-generation sequencing analyzes roughly 2% of those 3 billion base pairs. The additional information this technique picks up could lead to new, more specific genetic testing features in the future, especially as our knowledge of the genome and exome continues to grow.

Helix DNA 5

Based on next-generation sequencing, National Geographic’s test provides three ancestry reports.

  • Regional, which tells you where your ancestors came from more than 500 years ago. This didn’t get into as many specifics in my case as AncestryDNA and 23andMe’s tests did. 
  • Deep, which shows your ancestors’ migration patterns thousands of years ago.
  • Hominin ancestry, which tells you how much DNA you have in common with a Neanderthal.

The verdict: For what you get, the test doesn’t have nearly the range that other ancestry tests have. And it’s more expensive than the other two $99 options, though National Geographic says the revenue funds nonprofit “conservation, exploration, research, and education” efforts.

Other ancestry tests:

There are, of course, other tests I have yet to try.

MyHeritage, for example, has a DNA test that’s currently going for $79 (originally $99). Its tests, like Ancestry’s, are focused on building family connections and trees. 

Others, like FamilyTree DNA (which offers tests from $59) are also geared toward those wanting to find genetic links to relatives.

Conclusion: Each company has its own methods, algorithms, and data, and the reports can differ a bit. Because the three main direct-to-consumer genetics tests come in at around the same price point, you should go with the one that will answer your most pressing questions.

SEE ALSO: I shipped my spit to AncestryDNA to see how much I could learn from my genes — and found out my family history is more complex than I thought

DON’T MISS: I revisited my 23andMe DNA test results that can now tell if you’re at an increased risk of diseases — here’s what it was like

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NOW WATCH: Biologists caught rare footage of the mysterious ‘seven-armed’ octopus clutching something exciting in its mouth

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Fyre Festival organizer says he was 'naive' about the luxury event that became a nightmare — but he's still planning another one

billy mcfarland ja rule fyre

The Fyre Festival was supposed to be an escape to an island paradise, where you and your friends could party with super models and indulge in luxury.

What those who spent $450-$12,000 for a ticket actually got, however, was a day spent trapped on an island, allegedly with no plumbing, a processed cheese sandwich, few musicians, and airport officials who reportedly padlocked dehydrated attendees waiting for a plane to escape.

The festival was the brainchild of young entrepreneur Billy McFarland and early 2000s rap star Ja Rule.

After hours of social media postings from attendees who learned shortly upon arrival on the Bahamian island that the festival was canceled and that there were no flights home or hotels to stay at, Ja Rule posted on Twitter, denying the allegation the festival was a scam while also apologizing.

McFarland broke his silence late on Friday with an apology on Rolling Stone, and spoke again on Saturday morning through a video he sent to TMZ.

“We were overwhelmed and just didn’t have the foresight to solve all these problems,” McFarland told Rolling Stone, adding that he and his team were “a little naive.” He said that he would atone for the failure by refunding all attendees this weekend and offering them access to a free festival in the US later this year. He said that the Fyre Festival as it was intended will re-launch in 2018, and that $1.50 of every ticket would go to the Red Cross in the Bahamas (later saying in the TMZ video each donation would be $1.00).

“Next year, we will definitely start earlier,” he said.

On Saturday morning, McFarland told TMZ that promoters and artists had already reached out to him, and that he was working with them on next year’s festival, to be held at a beach location in the US.

McFarland created Fyre with Ja Rule in 2015, and told the story of how they came together last November at the MusicNotes Conference.

McFarland was interested in putting on a music event of some sort and decided to find the representative of Ja Rule, one of his favorite artists. His first stop was Instagram, where he found a guy going by “Reggie Muscles” who claimed to be the rapper’s representative. Reggie Muscles requested $500 for a meeting with Ja Rule.

Instead of the rapper, Muscles passed McFarland to “Big Fred,” who made the same request. This repeated several times, McFarland said, until he finally found himself on a helicopter with Ja Rule after spending thousands to finally get to him. It was here, he said, that he learned Ja Rule had no idea McFarland had been trying to book him.

And thus Fyre was born, they said, as a way to cut out the middle men and create a festival that dealt with artists directly.

This year’s event was supposed to be headlined by Blink-182, who canceled shortly before the event, citing a lack of resources provided by Fyre.

In his Rolling Stone account, McFarland said he and Ja Rule picked the Exumas section of the Bahamas because of its beauty. He said that he later learned that there was no working water or sewage on the island. He told TMZ that he had to ship an ambulance to the island from New Jersey for the event.

McFarland claimed that he didn’t cancel the event sooner because things didn’t turn so bad until a storm late Wednesday night destroyed much of the event’s infrastructure.

This isn’t the first time McFarland has faced complaints for failing to deliver. Earlier this year, Business Insider reported that many members of McFarland’s Magnises club for millennials said that Magnises regularly canceled events with little notice, and that their Magnises credit cards were frauduently charged.

As for Fyre, McFarland said he’s moving forward and will be more prepared next time, assuming that actually happens.

“We underestimated the size of the team we’d need,” he told TMZ. “We had 300 full-time festival staff this year … we would seek to multiply that by a large factor for next year.”

SEE ALSO: Here’s what Fyre Festival attendees thought they were getting when they bought $12,000 tickets — and here’s the nightmarish reality

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NOW WATCH: Fyre Festival expectations vs. reality — here’s what attendees thought they were getting when they bought $12,000 tickets

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