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Recommended Reading: Palmer Luckey and the homemade VR headset

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Recommended Reading highlights the best long-form writing on technology and more in print and on the web. Some weeks, you'll also find short reviews of books that we think are worth your time. We hope you enjoy the read.

How Palmer Luckey Created the Oculus Rift
by Taylor Clark,
Smithsonian Magazine

If you've yet to read up on the origins of the Oculus Rift, there's no time like the present. Smithsonian Magazine details the headset's origins, giving its creator, Palmer Luckey, an American Ingenuity Award this week. The piece offers a look into the gaming gadget's brief history, including the first meeting between Luckey and Brendan Iribe, Nate Mitchell and Michael Antonov back in 2012.

The Future of the Culture Wars is Here, and it's Gamergate
by Kyle Wagner, Deadspin

Not sure what this whole Gamergate thing is all about? Here's a good place to start. Kyle Wagner's piece covers what you need to know and what it means for the future of internet culture.

Pocket

Endangered Tree Snails Keep Hawaii Public Radio Off the Air
by Adrienne LaFrance, The Atlantic

There have been lots of reasons for radio stations going off the air, but in Hawaii, the mating habits of endangered tree snails certainly make for an interesting situation. And of course, the whole thing makes for a perfect broadcasting metaphor.

Pocket

Outernet Aims to Provide Data to the Net Unconnected
by Camilla Costa, BBC

One company is looking to provide a truckload of reading materials and time-sensitive news bulletins to everyone around the globe -- even those with no connectivity. How will it accomplish the task? A system of satellites and solar-powered compact receivers for mobile phones.

Pocket

Tesla's Autopilot isn't Special (But it's Still Cool)
by Chris Ziegler, The Verge

At last week's event, Tesla detailed its autopilot tech that'll come with its vehicles. While the system is quite awesome, The Verge's Chris Ziegler explains that it's far from revolutionary. "The stereotypical vision of a car of the future tooling around your neighborhood with a driver comfortably asleep at the wheel (or missing altogether) isn't any closer to reality than it was before," he says.

Pocket

[Photo credit: Larry French/Getty Images]

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