There Is Literally No Issue More Pressing To American Security Than That Fake Apple Store In China

I don’t know if you watched the presidential debate last night—I don’t have TV and so chose to stream it on my fake MacBook, checking fake Twitter the whole time on my fake iPhone, fakeily (haha, you think I actually read Twitter?). After that I watched some fake Chinese DVDs. But they seemed so real. Almost as though they weren’t fake at all. It was cold in the apartment, so I wore my fake fur coat. It got the job done!

Anyway, expert faker Mitt Romney had some weird, whiny, fakeish line about how China always cheats and has a fake Apple store where they sell fake computers that fake the flow of fake code and that’s why you Real Americans don’t have jobs, sorry, you’re just not fake enough. Too many genuine fakes out there! What the fakeness comment misunderstands, however, is that China itself is a fake country. You think there’s really a place that big, with that many people, with that much pollution? Fake, fake, and faker. They even celebrate fake New Year’s Eve.

I’ll give Romney this, though: China is an excellent fake. We could go years forgetting it’s not real, that’s what a stellar fake it is. Plus, we’re so wrapped up in the fake phone numbers and fake email addresses we’re handing out left and right—in our fake IDs, fake bacon, fake sports, fake breasts and fake tolerance for those who are different—that it would hardly occur to us to worry about fakery outside our borders. Yet these fakes exist, really, and are apparently bad. Unless this all some big fake-out.

Follow Miles Klee on Twitter.

Alan Turing Biopic ‘The Imitation Game’ Picked Up By Black Bear Pictures

In 1952, English mathematician, logician, cryptanalyst, and computer scientist Alan Turing was arrested during a police investigation about a robbery in his own home. Turing’s sexuality was revealed in police’s process, submitting him to arrest for gross indecency. He was then prosecuted for being a homosexual, choosing chemical castration over prison. The process proved more than harrowing for the genius, and in June of 1954, Turing committed suicide by eating a cyanide-laced apple. Snow White had always been his favorite fairy tale.

In any case, this would be a tragic way for a life to end, but it’s even more heartbreaking and grim when you remember that Turing was the man who single-handedly cracked the German “Enigma Code” during World War II, helping the Allies gain strength and shaping the future for technology in ways we’re forever indebted. 

And naturally, a story as interesting and dynamic as Turing’s would make for a great film. And that’s where The Imitation Game—a biopic of Turing’s lifecomes in. The acclaimed script, written by Graham Moore, was featured on the 2011 Black List and has since been looking for a home, garnering more attention as it moves from studio to studio. Earlier this year, Leonardo DiCaprio was set to star in and produce the film with Warner Bros. at the helm and J. Blakeson directing. However, after DiCaprio decided that he couldn’t fully commit, Warner Bros. dropped the project. But now, it seems all is not lost; Teddy Schwarzman’s Black Bear Pictures have signed on to finance the film, presumably, with J. Blakeson still on board. It will be interesting to see what actor is cast to pick up where Leo took off and if the studio can provide the footing to move, what could be, a truly interesting film.

The iPhone Case Conspiracy

Rejoice, young urbanites! You can now head on down to your local Apple store to wait in line for the new iPhone 5, which is like the iPhone 4S, I hear, only longer and thinner and with some shitty maps app. And the iPhone 4S was, of course, very similar to the iPhone 4, only it came with a computerized lady voice who will speak to you as if you are Zooey Deschanel. Basically, the iPhone upgrades are minimal, at least from what I have seen (I’m still on the iPhone 4), but they keep changing the damn thing and people keep getting excited about it. And I sense a conspiracy afoot.

It came to me this morning when I received some email blast from one of those damn Fab or Groupon or Gilt Man Getaway Bonus Round Pricelines email blasts. "New Cases For The iPhone 5!" it shouted at me with questionable capitalization. I realized that, yes, should I ever upgrade to the new iPhone, I’ll have to buy another case. How many cases have I bought? So many cases. Why do I keep buying these cases? First of all, it’s a phone that is made of glass. That wasn’t too bright, was it? 

I can only assume that the Phone Case Industry, those devils, are the ones lobbying Apple for new aesthetic changes such as reduced thickness and extra buttons and multiple cameras, if only so we can keep shelling out forty bucks a pop on cases to protect a $300 cell phone that should, you know, not break when you drop it, because $300 is a lot of money to spend on a phone that is MADE OF GLASS. Here’s a thought: let’s have a phone that won’t shatter when it falls out of our hands and onto the sidewalk. Yesterday I saw a man on the street claiming that Obama knew about 9/11 and he should be impeached; today, I think I might run down to Soho and shout at the fools waiting in line for their new phones so they will know that Case Logic doesn’t want to protect your phones because they want you to buy more cases! A conspiracy, I tell you! 

Follow Tyler Coates on Twitter.

Your Daily Guide To Trending Topics

Every day there are some topics that are trending. Since many of them don’t make sense, we provide easy contextualization. Also, this way, you won’t actually have to know anything about anything.

There’s a strange irony in the fact that people are using the web to read all about why New Orleans’ Times-Picayune, around since 1837, will stop daily printing. The paper, which will lay off an untold number of journalists, is the most widely-searched news item on Google this morning. The Pulitzer-winning daily has announced that beginning this fall it will only print Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday editions, sending members of its (rather large) circulation into a tizzy and giving digital doomsayers something to thump their chests about. “For us, this isn’t about print versus digital, this is about creating a very successful multi-platform media company that addresses the ever-changing needs of our readers, our online users and our advertisers," said an executive who won’t lose his job over this. "This change is not easy, but it’s essential for us to remain relevant."

Hakeem Nicks
In a sporty turn, millions of Google users are searching today for information about New York Giants receiver Nicks after he broke his foot during practice yesterday. The football player is scheduled for surgery today and has an estimated recovery time of 12 weeks, which means he would miss the beginning weeks of training camp for the upcoming season. The team’s coach, Tom Coughlin, isn’t sure he’ll make it at all, saying, “it’s probably going to be close.”

Yahoo! is a bit less serious today. The most-searched term on the site is Fantasia, referring not to the Disney movie but to the American Idol alum Fantasia Barrino, who appeared on the recent Idol finale in a series of odd and ill fitting clothes. Listen, the girl sings like a house on fire and doesn’t have to dress herself anyway so I say let her be. Though she does seem a bit unhinged in this performance of Elton John’s “Take Me To The Pilot.”

IBM Bans Siri
Computer giant IBM has banned its employees not from using iPhones, made by bitter rival Apple, but from using the Siri function on the latest model of the mugger magnets. Yahoo!’s fascinated users are finding out that IBM brass told Technology Review, “The company worries that the spoken queries might be stored somewhere” – and they’re not wrong. All spoken requests are stored on Apple servers and the company’s not forthcoming about what it does with the information. Also, IBM is super pissed that they don’t have a cool smart phone or really much in the way of cred these days.

You can’t really trust Twitter to relay the truth on a good day, but today when posts revealing what it is users lie about most are trending, well, all bets are off.

Lies 4

Lies 3

Lies 2

Lies 1

Your Daily Guide to Trending Topics

Every day there are some topics that are trending, Since many of them don’t make sense, we provide easy contextualization. Also, this way, you won’t actually have to know anything about anything.

Robert F. Kennedy

RFK Jr. is trending today because yesterday his estranged wife, Mary Kennedy, died, reportedly from having hanged herself at their Westchester, New York estate. It’s just the latest tragedy for the seemingly cursed American political dynasty, which has seen more than its fair share of members die in tragic and untimely ways. The Kennedys were married in 1994, but last year Bobby filed for divorce amid rumors of Mary’s substance abuse issues and of his own philandering. “We deeply regret the death of our beloved sister Mary, whose radiant and creative spirit will be sorely missed by those who loved her,” the family said in a statement.

Nick Stahl

In other curse news, people are searching up a storm (both online and in person) for actor Nick Stahl of Terminator 3 is the latest cast member of that franchise to run into trouble. The 32-year-old’s wife has reported him missing, saying the last time he was seen was May 9 and adding that Stahl had been frequenting a down-and-out part of Los Angeles, perhaps a hint at drug use. Stahl took over in the Terminator franchise for Edward Furlong, who left the series to find his own problems, including stints in rehab and accusations of rather serious violence against his wife. Troubled actors including Christian Bale and Thomas Dekker have also been part of the series of films.

Tyra Banks

Over at Yahoo!, things are a little more lighthearted; the site’s number-one search term is “Tyra Banks Too Fat.” But the readers there aren’t hating, they’re searching for an essay the America’s Next Top Model host wrote  for The Daily Beast supporting the new Vogue rule banning underage and malnourished models. In the piece, Banks discusses her own battles with weight and how difficult it made her teenage life. Then she explains what exactly it is about her modeling competition show that is healthy for young viewers. No, of course she doesn’t do that part. 

iPad Mini

People are nuts about Apple products—spending money on them instead of more valuable Apple stock—but this is crazy. The internet is wild with iAddicts searching for a report that says that Apple might be planning to release a 7-inch version of its tablet, which would retail for about $250, to compete with the Kindle. There already is an iPad Mini, guys, it’s called an iPhone. Whatever, see you all in line.

John Travolta

Bing users are still a bit hung up on movie star and pubic hair hippie John Travolta and the mounting lawsuits against him for making homosexy advanced toward masseurs and other guys. Too bad searching for Travolta news on Bing doesn’t bring you this hot nugget: According to the wife of late Grease star Jeff Conway, Travolta once tried to wake the now-deceased actor with oral sex, leading to a rift in their friendship and what might have been a lasting distaste on Conway’s part for morning action.

Lil Kim

Twitter is bonkers for the Queen Bee this morning, due to her appearance on a New York radio show and also the news that she has taken in her estranged father, who’s reportedly suffering from Alzheimer’s but could also be a spy sent by Nicki Minaj and Foxy Brown to attack from inside her home. The story is developing.

Lil Kim 1

Lil Kim 2

Lil Kim 3

Lil Kim 4


Here’s Your First Look at Ashton Kutcher as Steve Jobs

Loathe him or hate him, Ashton Kutcher was chosen to play the equally divisive Steve Jobs in an upcoming biopic about the life of the late Apple co-founder. Irrespective of the fact most people think Kutcher is either an unfunny hack, a jerk, or both, many eyebrows were raised when the Jobs casting news was announced earlier this year. People just couldn’t see Kutcher playing Jobs. Now, they can!

In a group of photos obtained today by TMZ–one of which is above–Kutcher is seen on on the set of the oddly titled Jobs: Get Inspired, donning the Levi’s jeans, black turtleneck and unkept facial hair that Jobs became known for wearing.

Slam dunk? Gutter ball? Why am I using sports references?

Cell Phone Companies Increasingly Appealing to Fat Americans

As mobile technologies expand, so do Americans. And with two-thirds of us pretty darn fat and getting fatter, the cell phone industry is about to explode. Fortunately, the innovative minds behind creating the sleekest and thinnest portable devices have taken our pudgy asses into account.

Enter:  the “Ice Cream Sandwich,” Google Android’s newest operating system.
Outfitted with buttons that glow, swipe-able photo galleries, a faster browser, and a platter of other performance-enhancing accoutrements, the Ice Cream Sandwich has been deemed positively “enchanting.”
Enchanting? I’m practically drooling all over my desk. My iPhone and stash of dark chocolate Kit Kat bars are soaked in my residual, viscous slobber. I don’t know whether I want to dance my grubby little fingers upon its resizable home-screen widgets or merely stuff the bite-sized bugger in my mouth.
But believe it or not, the Ice Cream Sandwich is not the first deliciously-named morsel of mobile technology. In fact, it’s preceded by a long line of ancestors (two others) that bore strikingly healthier gastronomic titles.
In 1996, there was Nokia’s “Banana” phone, which was fashionably futuristic enough to make its big screen debut on Keanu Reeve’s ear in “The Matrix.” Fast forward ten years, and Verizon debuts its indulgently sweet LG Chocolate, which in its dark variety is as good for you as exercise.  Today, Google is serving up the Ice Cream Sandwich, which has no known health benefits except eliciting dopamine-enhancing memories of summers spent bike riding, and that painfully cute time your fourth-grade crush wiped some rainbow sprinkles from your cheek with his napkin.
Yes, it seems mobile marketing has evolved to meet our own increasing levels of gluttony. What’s next? The “Philly Cheesesteak?” The “Fried Oreo?” The “Baskin Robbin’s Large Heath Bar Shake?” Ah, when all else fails, just swig some water, take a walk, and grab an Apple.

iPhone 4S Preorders Sold Out

Did you order your iPhone 4S yet? No? OMG. What are you going to do? How will you survive? This is monumentally, epically terrible. The online Apple Store has updated its shipping estimates and users ordering the device now won’t be able to pick one up on launch day. Instead, they’ll have to wait an excruciating one to two weeks.Future text message to your old phone from someone quicker than you? “Ha Ha!”

The preorder began on Friday, with AT&T reporting over 200,000 purchases within 12 hours making this the most successful launch to date despite little fanfare and some complaining that it looks the same and is not called an iPhone 5. Picky, picky! Verizon and Sprint have not posted anything yet, so there still may be a small, though this is likely wishful thinking, chance.

If you must have one, you can go wait in line. If the plan is to #OccupyYourLocalApple store, head there now. According to Mashable, there are already people staking out in lawn chairs. Two people have been waiting at the 5th Avenue store in New York City for 12 days.

How Will You Remember Steve Jobs?

Millions of people are mourning the loss of the man who is primarily responsible for the way we now communicate our grief: with our computers and our phones.

It’s always extremely fascinating to read the Internet after the death of a celebrity. No matter how old the famous individual was, or how imminent their death seemed to the public, it seems that there’s a standard practice of grieving for those we all feel like we know (even though very few of us really do).

The news of Steve Jobs’ death was not a total shock. He’d been fighting pancreatic cancer for a number of years, and devotees were concerned when he stepped down from his position as CEO of Apple a few months ago. When the story broke this evening, however, people immediately, and not surprisingly, took to their social media outlets of choice to express their feelings. Tumblr started to go down immediately, and Twitter had some bugs soon thereafter. Some people tweeted a single character: an apple. Some posted pictures of their Macbooks, commenting that the photos were taken with iPhones. Many shared a video of Jobs delivering a commencement speech at Stanford in 2005. There was a particularly appropriate quote that also made the rounds:

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

Even celebrities like Nicki Minaj and BD Wong (BREAKING: BD Wong is on Twitter!) made their thoughts public. And that’s what’s possibly so interesting about grieving on the Internet: the thoughts expressed are more personal than condolences. Condolences are usually expressed to the families who have lost loved ones; when ordinary people ruminate on the death of a famous individual, they are doing nothing but making the loss of–let’s face it–a random human being into something that is personal to them. The act of grieving is so rarely this self-centered.

Most of us did not know Steve Jobs, but most of us feel like we did. One can only hope that those who are so shaken by the death of an unknown person will be able to express with the same levity and sentiment their feelings when those they know and love are lost, as well.