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Toyota Safety System

You won't have to splurge on a luxury car (or a pricey option package) just to get a vehicle that will brake by itself in a crisis. Toyota has launched a strategy that will bring automatic braking to most of its lineup, not just premium rides. The technology will be a relatively low-cost ($300 to $635) option for just two vehicles at first, the RAV4 Hybrid SUV and Lexus' RX crossover, but the automaker hopes to have it available or included in "nearly all" of its models by the end of 2017. It'll be easy to find in the near future, too. The Avalon sedan is next in line, and a total of seven additional Toyota and Lexus models are on deck this year. Toyota certainly isn't the only company hoping to popularize smart braking, but this plan could be one of the most ambitious.

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Dyson really hates dirt, to the point that it's now come up with a new bladeless fan that can also filter out ultrafine airborne particles -- including viruses, bacteria and pollens -- that are as tiny as 0.1 microns. The aptly-named Pure Cool (AM11) closely resembles Dyson's other fan towers, with the notable difference being the cylindrical glass HEPA filter around the base. After 450 prototypes, the company claims that this filter removes 99.95 percent of ultrafine particles, and it's good for up to 4,382 hours or about six months of continuous use. In other words, if you use the Pure Cool for 12 hours each day, then you'll only need to replace the filter after a year. Of course, it's hard to say whether it'll last just as long in smoggy Beijing, which is where Dyson cleverly chose to do the global launch for the Pure Cool.

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Forcing someone to wear a location tracker apparently constitutes a Fourth Amendment "search" - the Supreme Court effectively said so when ruling on a North Carolina case where a convicted sex offender was forced to wear a GPS monitor at all times in 2013. The offender challenged the court, and while the state's court first ruled in favor of the tracker, stating it was no search at all, the Supreme Court said that didn't follow that court's precedents. And what the Supreme Court says, goes.

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BitSummit has been at the forefront of Japan's independent gaming scene for the past two years, hosting an event that shows off projects from small studios and industry veterans alike, plus live music and an awards show. Last year's showcase attracted 5,000 fans and 130 game developers, including Mega Man designer Keiji Inafune, Epic Games, Sony and Microsoft.

For the 2015 show, BitSummit has partnered with four studios -- 17-Bit, Vitei, Q-Games and Pygmy Studio -- to establish the Japan Independent Games Aggregate, which will oversee all event planning. Plus, one of the leading indie-game promotion houses in the Western world, Indie Megabooth, will help organize BitSummit 2015, lending it an extra layer of delicious credibility. Indie Megabooth President and CEO Kelly Wallick joins JIGA on its board of advisers, and she spoke with us briefly about the new collaboration.

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The chatter surrounding high fidelity listening devices and services picked up over the last year or so (thanks, Neil Young), and Onkyo hopes its new 3-in-1 device will lure you to the land of high definition. The company's aluminum-wrapped DAC-HA300 is not only a portable music player for audiophiles, but it also serves as both a headphone amp and digital-to-analog converter (DAC) for iOS and Android devices, or even your office workstation. With its primary function, the PMP can wrangle up to 128GB of tunes via a microSD card for 192 kHz/24-bit listening, while also serving as a headphone amp for that set of cans you take along on the daily.

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Happy Monday! There's no better way to start the work week than with a big dose of puppy love. Check out the pawesome winners of the 11th annual Engadget Awards. Then it's time to get serious as Tim Cook talks about dangerous discrimination laws popping up across the country. Get all the details on these stories and many more in today's Daily Roundup.

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1968 is when it all changed. On December 9 that year, Douglas Engelbart, a computer scientist at Stanford Research Center, made a 90-minute video presentation that revolutionized the world of computers. He didn't show up on stage at the Computer Conference in San Francisco, instead, he teleconferenced from his research lab 30 miles away -- an unprecedented feat at the time. Now almost half a century later, "the mother of all demos" is being resurrected as an avant garde opera called The Demo. Composers Mikel Rouse and Ben Neill re-imagine Engelbart's demo and the defining moments in his life that led up to it through a hybrid theater performance.

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The NCAA men's basketball tournament is down to its Final Four, and this weekend we'll find out which two move on to the championship game. Of course, we'll be glued to the couch watching Interstellar on Blu-ray. The film will even bring its IMAX sequences home The Dark Knight-style, pushing black bars aside to fill up the 16:9 screen. On TV, AMC's Mad Men begins to run its final few episodes, while we also have the season finale of Archer on FX. PS4 gamers can check out a new Metroid-ish shooter called Axiom Verge, while on Xbox One the free MMO Neverwinter is launching. Look after the break to check out each day's highlights, including trailers and let us know what you think (or what we missed).

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Cards Against Humanity, the naughty fill-in-the-blank card game, today launched the $10 Science Pack, an expansion offering 30 cards written in collaboration with Bad Astronomer Phil Plait and Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal creator Zach Weinersmith. But that's not the coolest part: All proceeds raised by the Science Pack will be funneled into the Cards Against Humanity and SMBC Science Ambassador Scholarship, which offers full tuition coverage to women seeking undergraduate degrees in science, tech, engineering and mathematics. Applications will go live soon for the fall 2016 school year, and each one will be reviewed by a panel of more than 40 women working in STEM fields, including at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Harvard Medical School and the Smithsonian Institution.

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A street sign for Apple's Infinite Loop in Cupertino

It's official: AT&T is offering full-fledged gigabit internet service in Silicon Valley before Google. After months of teasing, the telecom has launched its U-verse GigaPower service in Cupertino, Apple's home turf -- and a quick drive away from Google's headquarters, we'd add. Get ready to pony up if you're in the area, though. Gigabit access costs $110 per month by itself, and that's if you agree to AT&T's Internet Preferences (read: targeted ads). In other cities, it costs as little as $70. Still, this may hit the sweet spot if you're a local tech worker who just can't wait to download the latest test releases.

[Image credit: Franco Folini, Flickr]

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