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Earlier this week Valve introduced Steam Guard Mobile Authenticator as a means to keep its users safe from phishing attempts, and now it's taken another step in that direction. From here on out, until you spend a minimum $5 with your account certain features are blocked. What're you going to miss out on? Friend invites, opening group chat, the Steam discussion boards and voting on Greenlight games among other things. But, considering that most people use the service for, you know, buying and playing games, this really should only affect those who're actively using the service for nefarious purposes.

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It's been more than a year since Comcast announced its plan to buy fellow cable giant Time Warner Cable in a $45 billion deal, but it still hasn't received the blessings of various regulators. Now, word is leaking out from unnamed sources to Bloomberg and the New York Times that suggests Justice Department lawyers will recommend blocking the merger. Many consumer groups, politicians and executives from other companies have raised concerns over the last year that the combination would put too many customers, and too much of the nation's internet under one banner, despite a promise by Comcast to divest itself of some 3 million customers. Facing so much negative attention, Comcast is trying to improve customer service and reassure skeptics that it will be a friendly giant telecommunications company, but hasn't had much success convincing anyone that its plan will make cable TV better.

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Satellite Reentry

To combat the increasingly dense layer of dead satellites and miscellaneous space debris that are enshrouding our planet, no idea -- nets, lassos, even ballistic gas clouds -- seems too far-fetched to avoid. Now, an international team of researchers led by Japan's Riken research institute has put forward what may be the most ambitious plan to date. They propose blasting an estimated 3,000 tons of space junk out of orbit with a fiber optic laser mounted on the International Space Station.

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Every now and then, there are projects on Kickstarter designed for a niche group of people. Adaptalux is one of those: it's a modular, flexible and nearly pocket-sized lighting studio for macro photography and videography. The team behind Adaptalux claims that the system is capable of creating an infinite amount of illumination environments, thanks to an interchangeable design that users can customize based on their needs. For example, the Control Pod lets you choose the amount of light sources (up to five) and the color of them, as well as control the beam angle for each. And, much like the familiar gooseneck desk lamps, Adaptalux's lighting arms can be bent and twisted almost any way you want.

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Newest Innovations In Consumer Technology On Display At 2015 International CES

MakerBot is perhaps the most well-known consumer 3D printer company on the market, having sold tens of thousands of Replicators since its start in 2009. It's a large part of why Stratasys, an industrial 3D printer and manufacturer, decided to acquire MakerBot in 2013. Two years after that merger, however, things don't seem quite so rosy. Motherboard has learned that MakerBot has apparently laid off roughly 20 percent of its staff -- which is around a hundred people -- as part of a recent consolidation effort by parent company Stratasys. An employee told the outlet that the company is trying to eliminate duplicate positions and streamline operations as a whole.

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Owl Cave popped onto the indie scene in 2013 with a macabre, witty point-and-click adventure called Richard & Alice, which received a slew of rave reviews. Studio co-founder Nina White specializes in crafting vaguely horrific stories packed with tension, and her latest creation, The Charnel House Trilogy, is no exception. It's a subdued brand of horror: no jump scares, no boogeymen under the bed, no demonic children with long, limp hair crawling out of the TV. Charnel House takes place on a train and tells the stories of three passengers over the course of a single night.

"For me, horror's all about the creeping dread, the slow, unsettling burn," White says. "It's this sense of unease and discomfort that I really like playing around with when crafting horror stories."

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Maglev Train

The Central Japan Railway company reports that its magnetic levitation bullet train topped 366 miles per hour on Thursday during a test run along a length of test track in the Yamanashi prefecture. This was enough to break its own 12-year-old, 361 mph world record set back in 2003. The train reportedly carried 29 engineers during its run. Unfortunately, the record is only expected to last until next Tuesday when JR Central hopes to spur the magnetically-propelled commuter train past 372 mph (600 kph).

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3D printing has resulted in solid solutions like cartilages, organ replicas and even tortoise shells. But Disney Research now has a printer that can create soft, bendable objects - think 3D printing stuffed toys. The mechanics of the printer are similar to conventional machines that use plastics or metals, except this one works with fabric to create flexible and functional objects. Most additive 3D printers are designed to deposit materials in a specific spot, but fabric requires an alternative technique that imitates sewing or layering.

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Frederick's of Hollywood Black Friday at Westfield San Francisco Centre 2009

One of the big names in bedroom wear is closing all of its retail stores and moving forward on the web. Frederick's of Hollywood announced this week that it plans to close all of its physical shops and transition to an online-only business. The name might be synonymous with lingerie and other intimates shopping for some, having been around for decades, but Frederick's fell way behind the competition -- like Victoria's Secret and others. Moving from brick-and-mortar locations to just selling goods on the web is a move we've seen before, and it's becoming increasingly more common. However, not being able to benefit from curious foot traffic means a massive shift in marketing, which some experts believe was Frederick's problem in recent years.

[Image credit: Steve Rhodes/Flickr]

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'Cognitive Cooking with Chef Watson' is a collaboration between IBM and the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City. Once a week, as part of an ongoing series, we'll be preparing one recipe from the book until we've made all of them. Wish us luck.

Let's get a couple of things straight: Watson, the IBM supercomputer famous for spanking Ken Jennings on Jeopardy, did not really write these recipes in the purest sense of the word. Rather, IBM trained it by feeding it a giant database of recipes, studies on what flavors and smells people find pleasant and information on the chemical compounds found inside ingredients. Using this, Watson is able to suggest dishes with surprising flavor combinations. From there the computer passes the baton to a human being, in this case James Briscione and Michael Laiskonis from the Institute of Culinary Education (ICE), who use the ingredient lists and style suggestions as inspiration for new dishes.

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