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Microsoft Windows 10

Microsoft may be tight-lipped about what will be revealed at its October 6th device event, but that doesn't mean that everything is a mystery. In some cases, a slew of leaks have telegraphed Redmond's plans in advance. More Lumia phones, anyone? However, there are still a few questions left. What about the fabled Surface Pro 4? When does Windows 10 reach your existing phone? And will there be any wearable tech? We'll answer as many of those questions as we can so that you have a good idea of what to expect when Microsoft's execs take the stage.

"Drums are hard."

That was the verdict from my boyfriend after a raucous night playing Rock Band 4 with a group of friends. He's a guitarist, in both the physical and digital realms, and to him, Rock Band 4's drums are an anomaly. The rhythms are somehow tricky and repetitive at the same time; landing the bass pedal takes nearly perfect timing; it's a big rig that requires big motions; and the entire instrument takes a ridiculous amount of coordination. This is why my boyfriend doesn't enjoy playing the drums in Rock Band 4 -- and it's precisely why I love it.

There's little doubt the cars of the future will be increasingly more high tech. However, if Nissan has anything to do with it, those vehicles could be blanketed in customizable displays, too. The Japanese company revealed its "Teatro for Dayz" (yes, really) concept ahead of the Tokyo Motor Show later this month that covers most of the interior, and some of the exterior, with "a clean canvas" of LED panels. Nissan's goal was to make a car that "share natives" (the selfie generation, in other words) would find appealing. To do that, the automaker designed a vehicle where time spent riding could also be used for "connecting and sharing experiences with friends." And, you know, paying attention to the road.

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  • Google Maps now works on the Apple Watch

    Sure, Apple Maps has improved significantly in the past few years since it launched, but for many Apple users it still doesn't hold a candle to Google Maps. But if you're an Apple Watch user who wanted to use your watch for directions, Apple Maps has been your only option -- until today. A new update...

hdmi cable.

While many HDMI cables these days can spit out 4K, the results can be hit-or-miss (especially as you start exploring longer cable lengths). So the HDMI Licensing group, which manages the interface, has developed a new premium certification to make sure any cable that advertises 4K compatibility actually works for that higher resolution. As part of the certification, companies will follow an expanded set of guidelines when creating cables and also test them more vigorously to make sure they can output the full 18 Gbps needed for the HDMI 2.0 spec. It's not just about 4K, either -- the certification also ensures that cables support high dynamic range (HDR) video. Once approved, the premium certified cables will sport a tamper proof sticker, which should make it easier to find them in the sea of untested cables on the market. Hopefully, this means the end of gambling with 4K HDMI cable compatibility.

ASUS ZenWatch 2

Want a brand new Android Wear smartwatch while sticking to a tight budget? It's your lucky day. The Google Store has started carrying ASUS' ZenWatch 2, which offers the latest Android experience while starting at a very frugal $149 US. You don't have the full selection of straps or case colors -- sorry, no Milanese band here. However, you can pick from either a moderately-sized 45mm silver body with an aqua blue rubber strap, or a large 49mm gunmetal case with a wristband in navy blue leather. Either wearable will give you improved weather resistance and as much as 66 hours of use between charges. The ZenWatch 2 isn't as posh-looking as the new Moto 360 or the 2nd Edition LG Watch Urbane, but you probably won't mind when you're going to save a wad of cash.

If you've been looking for another way to access Spotify playlists in your car, you might be in luck. MirrorLink-compatible in-car systems play nice with the music streaming service thanks to a hand from an app called RockScout. The MirrorLink platform lets you access content on your phone using your car's dashboard controls, especially those rotary knobs and touch interfaces. While it may not provide fewer distractions, it might keep you from futzing with your phone to change songs while heading down the highway. Working with MirroLink's entertainment systems means Spotify will be available for even more in-dash systems as it's already available on CarPlay and Android Auto. If you're looking to give it a go, you'll need to download the RockScout Android app as that piece of software allows "participating Android apps" work with MirrorLink.

Meet the SKEYE Pico Drone: the world's smallest quadcopter and your new favorite toy. This tiny quadcopter is small enough to rest on the tip of your finger, and can maneuver through small spaces with acrobatic finesse. It's tons of fun for beginners and drone enthusiasts alike, and for a limited time Engadget readers can get one for just $34.99. That's 28 percent off the MSRP, and the lowest price on the web.

Tune in to our Microsoft event liveblog tomorrow at 10AM ET!

First Apple, then Google, now Microsoft. Over the past month, we've seen some of the biggest tech companies either hold hold keynotes or just straight-up announce a ton of stuff. Now, rounding out the list, Microsoft is about to put on a big press event of its own, where it's promising several new devices running Windows 10. We'd say a refreshed Surface Pro is a safe bet, given that it hasn't received an update in a year and a half. This would also be a good time for Microsoft to officially launch Windows 10 Mobile and indeed, we've seen leaks for a number of handsets, including the 5.2-inch Lumia 950, the 5.7-inch 950 XL and the lower-end Lumia 550. We also want to know when we can buy HoloLens, but we're less confident that Satya Nadella & co. will address that this week. In any case, all will be revealed tomorrow -- bookmark our liveblog link and check back at 10AM Eastern for full coverage.

Going into space is risky enough, but two startup companies are taking it to a new level. Moon Express is trying to get to the moon and land a robotic rover that can travel at least 500 meters (0.3 miles) and send back HD video to earth. That's not going to be easy, but it also wants to launch by 2017 on a rocket that's never flown, the Electron from New Zealand's Rocket Lab. That's a lot of dice-rolling, but if it succeeds, Moon Express will be eligible for Google's $30 million Lunar Xprize.

It's been a little over two years since Google introduced the first Chromecast, a cheap and easy way to turn any TV in your house into a smart TV. The tiny little dongle has taken the market by storm, racking up sales of over 20 million since launch. Now, the company has replaced it with not one but two streaming devices: a direct successor to the original video-focused Chromecast and a new, audio-only device appropriately called the Chromecast Audio.

Just as the original Chromecast made our dumb TVs smart, the Chromecast Audio promises to take your old pair of speakers and bless them with the convenience of streaming music. The value proposition is easy to understand: The Chromecast Audio is only $35, barely takes up any space and is easy to set up, and works with Spotify, the most popular streaming-music service on the planet. As Google tells it, it's a foolproof way to get streaming music onto your speakers. I've been testing the device since its introduction last week to find out if it delivers on that promise.

Philips Hue Gets Homekit Support

One of the frustrations of choosing an Internet of Things device is finding one that plays well with the other smart appliances in your home. Philips' Hue lighting platform is already pretty extensible, but today it's finally gained support for another big partner: Apple. With its new Homekit-enabled bridge, Philips will let you control your lighting via Siri (and supporting third-party apps), whether your bulbs are old or new.

Networking site LinkedIn has agreed to pay out $13 million for overzealous marketing of its services on behalf of users. You've likely received one of the emails, which appear to come from a contact (below), saying something like, "Hi, I'd like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn." That line actually makes a fine universal cartoon caption, but LinkedIn then sent several similar follow-up emails without saying it would do so in its terms of service. Many users felt that made them look needy (the email mentions your contact's name no less than five times), which is why they launched a class-action suit against the company in Lucy Koh's California court.

Remember that tease Adobe gave us during the recent iPad Pro reveal? It was a brief demo of the so-called Project Rigel, and now the creative software company is ready to make the big reveal just before its annual Max design conference starts. The finished product goes by Photoshop Fix, and it'll reside in Adobe's mobile arsenal alongside Photoshop Mix, Photoshop Draw, Illustrator Sketch and the rest of the company's recent releases. You may have noticed there's more than one mobile app with Photoshop in its name. Well, there's a reason for that: productivity. Photoshop Fix will help you take care of retouching photos on that trusty iOS device, and it really works quite well, partially due to the fact that it doesn't try to do too much.


Jack Dorsey has announced that he is re-taking the reins of the social network that he helped build. Dorsey had been the interim CEO since it was announced that previous CEO Dick Costolo was stepping down in June of this year. Twitter created a search committee after Costolo's departure that included former Twitter CEO, Evan Williams, to find a new boss. Turns out that the figure was there, all the time. In addition, Dorsey will remain as CEO of Square, the mobile-payments firm he founded when he left Twitter. This will be Dorsey's second term as CEO, the first abruptly ending in 2008 when he was replaced as CEO by Ev Williams.


Facebook has made it clear that satellites will play a big role in delivering its free internet initiative to people across the globe, but talk of a rollout has been pretty limited. That changed today after the company announced it's teamed up with French communications specialist Eutelsat to beam connectivity to more than 14 countries in the most densely populated parts of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Harvard's Robobees are already pretty adroit for paper-clip sized drones; they fly around stably in calm air and hover like real bees (if real bees were tethered to power). Researchers have given them a new talent that even the insects don't have -- the ability to "fly" underwater. To do so, they make like ducks and transition from flight to swimming by crashing into the water, sinking a bit, then flapping their wings at a slower pace (9 Hz) than in the air (120 Hz) . That's already a feat that few drones can match, but the aim is to eventually build autonomous bots that could do search and rescue and other beneficial activities.

Xbox One Controller

Xbox One users will be able to transplant one button's function to another -- without having to stump up money for a fancy new Elite controller. While that controller costs $150 (with other reasons that might warrant a purchase), Mike Ybarra, Microsoft's Director of Program Management, replied to a user to announce that new config options will come to all controllers soon -- something that is already possible on the PS4's standard peripheral. We'd wager that the settings will come alongside that tasty Xbox 360 backwards compatibility feature, coming this November.

The Tesela interactive paper sculpture in action

Paper art doesn't have to be flat and lifeless... just ask Aristides Garcia. The artist recently created an interactive sculpture, Tesela, that uses a combination of 3D projection mapping and tesselation algorithms to cast real-time, viewer-influenced patterns over 103 paper pyramids. The effect is a bit hypnotic, as you'll see below -- it's as if the paper has suddenly become a living landscape. You sadly can't see this in person at the moment (Garcia debuted it at a Berlin exhibit in August), but it still shows that the right technology can liven up just about anything, even if it's made from dead trees.

Social Media Life

Certain locations are obviously Instagram photo magnets, like the Golden Gate Bridge or Times Square. Have you wondered which locations are actually the most popular, though? Busbud has done some legwork to find out. The tourism site recently published an interactive map that shows the most popular locations on Instagram in each US state and Canadian province... and they're not necessarily the ones you're expecting. It makes sense that Disneyland would be a hotspot for Californians, for example, but you might not know that Dollywood gets the most attention in Tennessee -- sorry, Elvis.

Japanese Scientists Create Worlds First Fatherless Mammal

Virtual reality isn't just helping scientists understand and treat fellow humans -- it's helping them make sense of their four-legged friends, too. Researchers have built a virtual maze that convinces mice they're running through hallways when they're really running on a ball. The invention makes it possible to keep the rodent's head still and study how its brain works while it's navigating. That's important when you can usually collect only limited data while a critter is on the move. Unlike earlier prototypes, this doesn't require training the mice before they can give the experience a try.