Matt’s Favorites: Events For Young Techs, Creatives Big Boost To Economy — And Giant Demon Frogs

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A new analysis finds that the devil frog, Beelzebufo ampinga, was slightly smaller than previously thought, had massive spikes protruding from its skull, and a plate of body armor on its back that may have helped it fend off predators.  LUCI BETTI-NASH / SUNY - STONY BROOK

A new analysis finds that the devil frog, Beelzebufo ampinga, was slightly smaller than previously thought, had massive spikes protruding from its skull, and a plate of body armor on its back that may have helped it fend off predators. LUCI BETTI-NASH / SUNY – STONY BROOK

What a great day to be in tech in Michigan! Of course… every day is a great day to be in tech in Michigan. But there’s so much cool news to report, so let’s get right to it before the weekend hits!

* College students and recent grads are invited to another session of LiveWorkDetroit, a one-day immersion in all things Detroit, taking place Friday, Feb. 7 from 2 to 8 p.m. at the Westin Book Cadillac in Detroit. LiveWorkDetroit is an MEDC initiative designed to connect Michigan’s college graduates to Detroit job opportunities and promote the city of Detroit as a preferred post-graduation talent destination. Since 2011, more than 3,000 college students from universities and colleges across Michigan and surrounding states have participated in 17 LiveWorkDetroit events. The Feb. 7 event is being co-hosted by D:hive and MEDC. Participating students will have the opportunity to network with a wide range of Detroit employers including Lowe Campbell Ewald, Quicken Loans and Detroit Medical Center. The event will include a keynote address by Bruce Schwartz, Detroit relocation ambassador at Bedrock Real Estate Services, a panel discussion with some of Detroit’s young leaders, and a tour of some of the exciting small businesses, restaurants, museums, and affordable places to live. Registration is required. The cost is $10 if registering before or on Jan. 31 and $15 after. The registration fee covers all activities including transportation, dinner and the tour of the city. Register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/liveworkdetroit-february-7-2014-tickets-9729149147.

* This Saturday, Feb. 1, from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Oakland University’s School of Engineering & Computer Science is hosting a career day. Interested people can attend this free event to learn about academic and research opportunities in the School of Engineering & Computer Science. Attendees will also hear about some OU basics — like how to apply to the university and apply for scholarships and financial aid. Plus, everyone will get a taste of OU’s cuisine with a free lunch served during the program. The event is hosted in the banquet rooms of the Oakland Center on campus. The address is 2200 N. Squirrel Road in Rochester. More at http://www.oakland.edu.

* Creative industries in Michigan paid nearly $3.6 billion in wages to 74,000 employees in more than 9,700 Michigan businesses, including the third annual Creative State Michigan report released Thursday by ArtServe Michigan. Learn more at www.CreativeStateMI.org. This accounts for nearly 3 percent of Michigan’s employment totals, more than 3 percent of total wages and 4.6 percent of total state businesses. Creative State Michigan details economic and social data from 424 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations, representing an estimated 21 percent of the cultural groups in Michigan. These organizations contributed nearly $565 million in expenditures to Michigan’s economy, including nearly$196 million in salaries for 26,064 jobs. These organizations contributed more than $14 million in the employer portion of payroll taxes and nearly $1 million in state sales taxes. More than 3 million students benefited from educational programs provided by arts and cultural venues statewide. Michigan’s cultural groups reported more than 22.1 million visits, 68 percent offered free. Data for Creative State Michigan 2014: Creative Industries Report, done in partnership with the Detroit Creative Corridor Center, comes from the 2011 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages, the 2010 US Census Nonemployer Statistics and US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics. Data sources for Creative State Michigan 2014 include the Michigan Cultural Data Project, Americans for the Arts and the Michigan Economic Development Corp. Data Driven Detroit provided research support as an independent examiner of the information.

* Yahoo says usernames and passwords of its email customers have been stolen and used to access accounts, but the company isn’t saying how many accounts have been affected. The company said in a blog post that “The information sought in the attack seems to be names and email addresses from the affected accounts’ most recent sent emails.”

* GPS tracking technology is giving parents peace of mind – and helping kids stay safe – through a program that tracks school buses on their daily routes. Public schools in South Bend, Ind., rolled out the “MyStop” program, which lets parents and children know when the bus is coming by checking an app on their computer or smartphone.

* An ancient, predatory creature known as the devil frog may have looked even scarier than previously thought. The monster frog, Beelzebufo ampinga, lived during the Cretaceous Period in what is now Africa, and sported spiky flanges protruding from the back of its skull and platelike armor down its back, almost like a turtle shell.

* The most expensive battle in the 10-year history of the online sci-fi video game “EVE Online” is over after 21 hours of virtual warfare.  “EVE” developer CCP Games says the encounter ended up causing about 11 trillion dollars’ worth of damage in “EVE” currency, which equals about $300,000 to $330,000 in real-world money. “EVE” simulates a universe of more than 7,500 stars. It features more than 500,000 players worldwide  piloting starships and engaging in a virtual economy linked to real-world money.

* Facebook on Thursday unveiled Paper, a news reader app, as it continues to broaden its mobile offerings. Paper is made up of stories and themed sections, tying together your News Feed with other themes and topics ranging from sports to food, with stories from publications. It will be available in the U.S. on Feb. 3 for iPhone users.

* Next time you call someone a Neanderthal, better look in a mirror. Many of the genes that help determine most people’s skin and hair are more Neanderthal than not, according to two new studies that look at the DNA fossils hidden in the modern human genome.

*A new company called Eterni.me says you can have eternal life, of a sort. Just turn over all your Facebook, Twitter, blog and other posts, and the company will build an online personality around those traits. Wow.

* The freezing temperatures being felt across the U.S. are taking a toll on many of the electronics we use every day. When devices like the iPhone are exposed to the extreme cold for long periods of time, users can experience sluggish response times, and rapidly depleted batteries. KDKA-TV’s John Delano reports.

* Naoki Hiroshima says he was eating lunch when he received a test message from PayPal asking for a validation code to reset his account. He was about to find out that a hacker used a small amout of information to gain access to his PayPal and GoDaddy accounts, which ultimately led to Hiroshima losing his highly-coveted Twitter handle to an unidentified hacker.  Hiroshima, the CEO of N Methods, had the Twitter handle @N and says he’s had offers for up to $50,000 to purchase the name. He describes the series of events that caused him to lose his Twitter account on his blog.

* Chinese scientists will have to wait until the end of a long lunar night, lasting about 14 earth days, to see if repair efforts on the country’s first moon rover, dubbed Jade Rabbit, were successful, state media said. Jade Rabbit began experiencing “mechanical control abnormalities” on Saturday when entering the lunar night, which exposes the surface to extreme cold over about 14 earth days. The rover is supposed to shut down during that period.

* Things are about to get tougher for Apple. Google late Wednesday made an unexpected announcement that it’s selling Motorola Mobility to Chinese PC giant Lenovo for $2.91 billion, or less than a quarter of what it paid for the handset vendor just a couple of years ago. During the years Google owned it, Motorola lost money and market share, and the relationship caused tension between Google and the other Android vendors, particularly Samsung. It also led those other phone makers to develop their own software and services, rather than push those from Google. That amplified Android’s fragmentation in the market. Overall, Google’s purchase of Motorola turned out much better for iPhone maker Apple than for Google. That’s now going to change.

* Is Microsoft’s long search for a new CEO about to end? A Bloomberg report says that the company’s board is preparing to name Satya Nadella as Microsoft’s next CEO. It also says the board may decide to replace Bill Gates as chairman. If Nadella, now in charge of cloud computing, is about to become only the third CEO in Microsoft’s 38-year history, the company will put in charge the sort of brainy technologist who is closer to the Gates mold than the hard-charging salesman that is Steve Ballmer.

* It looks like the NSA may soon be in the hands of a Navy officer who specialized in code-making and breaking. The White House will name Vice Admiral Michael S. Rogers the new director of the National Security Agency, according to The New York Times, whichcites unnamed senior officials with the Obama administration. (The Washington Post published a similar report earlier.) Rogers’ appointment would be subject to Senate confirmation.

* Amazon fell short of investors’ expectations Thursday when it reported earnings of 51 cents-per-share and a revenue of $25.59 billion in the fourth quarter. The company’s stock was down more than 8 percent shortly after the news hit. Wall Street was expecting earnings of 67 cents a share and a revenue of $26.05 billion.

* The European Union is planning to force European automakers to install a device on all cars by 2020 that would allow the authorities to disableany care remotely at will. Lovely! Aw, heck, you weren’t really using that freedom stuff anyway, were you, Europeans?

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