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Thync's device

How eager are you to calm down (or psych yourself up) at a moment's notice? If the answer is "enough to buy a fairly expensive gadget," your solution is now within reach. Thync has launched its namesake mood-changing wearable at the hefty price of $299. That's a lot to pay simply to feel different, but the company is betting that its funky, triangular neurosignalling device is just the ticket if you tend to be stressed or lethargic at inopportune moments. Use the phone-controlled device and it should either relax or revitalize you for up to an hour, with "carry-over impacts" lasting for hours longer. The hardware worked well enough in our early hands-on, so it might be worth giving Thync a shot if you're often out-of-sorts -- it may well beat drinking coffee or beer to achieve the same effects.

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UK terror threat raised

According to Big Brother Watch (PDF), law enforcement agencies in the United Kingdom have requested the personal metadata of citizens nearly three quarters of a million times in the past two years. That is, between 2012 and 2014, UK cops asked for identifying details pertaining to a text, email, phone call or search some 733,237 times. More than 90 percent of those requests were subsequently granted. That averages out to one fulfilled request every two minutes. Alarmingly, these metadata requests have only increased since 2012 with a whopping 250,000 of them coming last year alone. Even more worrisome, that BBW data originated from a series Freedom of Information Act demands and may under-represent the total number of requests actually made.

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Intel has revealed a crop of new fifth-gen Core chips for mobile and desktop that should tide over power-users and gamers until next-gen "Skylake" CPUs arrive later this year. There are five new models for desktop and five for mobile, all packing the latest Iris Pro 6200 graphics. The most interesting model for desktop users is the Core i7-5775-C, a CPU that will replace the current i7-4790S for around $365. Thanks to the Iris chip, Intel says that model will double its predecessor's graphics performance and boost media chores by 35 percent. The top new laptop model is the $623 Core i7-5950HQ chip, which doubles the overall performance of older i7-5600U models.

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The next laptop you buy with a USB-C port could be even more useful than you thought. Intel today unveiled Thunderbolt 3, which uses an identical port design as its USB brethren. So if Apple sticks with its new MacBook design, for instance, it's possible you won't need an adapter to hook up external hardware via Thunderbolt. It's a step towards simplifying the often messy sea of ports found on laptops and PCs, and should make the standard accessible to a larger group of people than before. Thunderbolt 3 offers more than just port convenience, however. It'll also deliver a 40Gbps connection over Thunderbolt, which is double the speed of Thunderbolt 2, 10 Gbps USB 3.1 and DisplayPort 1.2.

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Coming right on time after Microsoft's leak a few hours ago, some pre-E3 Sony news just popped up. An FCC filing reveals two new versions of the PS4 are on the way, and one of them is its first to come stock with a 1TB hard drive inside, twice the size of the current one. PlayStation gamers have already been able to crack the system open and swap in a larger/faster storage unit, but if you'd prefer to skip the hassle the option of having one from the jump will be nice, and current games fill up a 500GB unit all too quickly.

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Mobile gaming doesn't mean low-power gaming according to Acer and Intel. The companies have joined forces to produced the first 14nm Atom x7 processor-powered (AKA Cherry Trail) Android tablet. The gamer-centric Predator 8 has the Acer Quad-Audio system with four front-facing speakers and the aggressive design sense (sharp angles, red, black and grey color scheme) that's been prevalent in PC gaming. The Gen8 Intel graphics should render 3D and video with less of the stuttering that pulls you out of your gaming experience. We didn't get a chance to play with the tablet, but it should be on the market in the next few months.

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Thanks to Moore's Law we've seen flash drives grow steadily smaller and smaller as storage capacity does exactly the opposite. To wit, the new SanDisk Ultra Fit USB 3.0 USB 3.0 storage unit is perhaps the tiniest we've witnessed yet. The company claims the device is smaller than a dime and the 128GB of space can store some 16 hours of 1080p video with read speeds clocking in at up to 130MB per second. Gizmodo Australia notes that this isn't the most expedient drive available, but hey, given the rather diminutive footprint it's probably pretty safe to leave permanently stuck in your gadget of choice. That minuscule size comes at a steep price though: $119 for the 128GB model -- or 1,190 dimes.

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Ford Sync 3 in action

Ford's Sync 3 connected car system is nearly ready to hit the road. The automaker has revealed that its tuned-up infotainment will first show up in 2016 Escape and Fiesta models, both of which go on sale this summer. If you'll recall, this version of Sync makes some big strides toward matching the experience you get on your smartphone. Besides touting an easier (or rather, less cumbersome) and speedier interface, it also brings in support for phone-like capacitive touch, more natural voice commands and WiFi updating. Sync 3 is much smarter about talking to your mobile gear, as well. It'll be one of the first shipping in-car platforms to support both Android Auto and CarPlay, and it'll eventually communicate directly with supporting navigation apps. You'll have to wait until later in the year if you want the new Sync in a spiffier ride like the Mustang, but that's no problem if you're just interested in an A-to-B commuter with modern cabin tech.

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Drag queens, Native Americans, victims of abuse and anyone who'd rather not use their real names on social media aren't done waging war against Facebook's real name policy. Around 50 to 100 protesters have shown up at Facebook's Menlo Park headquarters on Monday for the #MyNameIs protest. They carried signs that read "My Name Is My Business," "Facebook exposed me to my abuser" and "Your apology was a lie," among many others. If you recall, someone with a vendetta against drag queens went on a reporting spree last year to get them all banned. People have been reporting Native American users, too, because their names tend to incorporate elements of nature, animals or their own features that make them sound fake. Blogger Dana Lone Hill was one of the people affected, as well as someone named Lance Browneyes from South Dakota.

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Wunderlist on a Moto X

Microsoft's quest to conquer the mobile productivity app world by acquiring it is still underway, it seems. A Wall Street Journal source claims that the folks in Redmond have bought 6Wunderkinder, better known as the creator of the to-do app Wunderlist. Neither company is commenting on the scoop at the moment, but the deal is reportedly worth between $100 million to $200 million. The question, of course, is what Microsoft will do with its new prize. The company turned Acompli into the new versions of Outlook for Android and iOS, but it hasn't done much yet with Sunrise's calendar app. Given how handy to-do lists can be when paired with email and schedules, our money's on Outlook and similar apps eventually doing a better job of juggling your daily tasks.

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