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Comcast FCC Court Battle

After existing Open Internet, or net neutrality, regulations were struck down in court earlier this year, it appears the FCC is ready to come back with new ones. Re/code reports Chairman Tom Wheeler confirmed they will be on the table at an agency meeting May 15th. While that report indicates the rules will be the same, but justified under a different part of the law, the Wall Street Journal's sources say that new rules will be proposed tomorrow, with at least one notable change. According to the rumor, the new net neutrality rules will still bar ISPs from blocking or discriminating against certain sources over the last mile, but will allow them to sell special access to others. It sounds like the type of "managed connection" that Comcast, for example, is using to distribute video on-demand to its Xbox 360 app.

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Soon you might be able to simply ask your Apple TV to start playing 'House of Cards' rather than fumbling through a series menus. Code found in iOS 7.1's software development kit indicates that Siri is one its way to a new device, likely Apple's set-top box. In the operating system's documentation, the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad are represented by "1" and "2." The most recent files also include a new device indicated by a "3." For our non-developer friends following along at home, that means the digital assistant is headed to a different product. While the 3 could potentially represent something entirely new (like the fabled iWatch), Apple has previously used the number to represent its TV product in code. It's also currently being used in several iOS-based Apple TV apps.

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Video games now have more online spectators than traditional sports. Crazy, right? It's crazy. According to Qwilt, a company that provides video caching services to content creators, Twitch is now the most popular live streaming site in the US. The outfit's analytics group says the streaming site is more popular than UStream, the WWE, ESPN and MLB.com combined, owning a massive 43-percent share of all live streaming traffic. It's slightly shocking from a cultural standpoint, but we can't say we're entirely surprised: with the Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and even mobile platforms offering average gamers the chance to put on a show, Twitch is hosting more than a million streams per month. There's simply more content: Twitch streams gameplay 24 hours a day. ESPN has to wait for a sporting even to actually happen.

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If you've missed a few episodes of the Cosmos revival or maybe just want to fill the universe-sized hole in your media rack, the series hits Blu-ray and DVD this summer. Come June 10th (two days after the final episode airs), you'll be able to watch the doc's 13 installments plus a smattering of bonus features whenever you want. And speaking of supplements, the release will sport a five-part documentary chronicling the... documentary's making, with the Blu-ray getting an interactive history of the universe dubbed "The Cosmic Calendar." The price-tag on that 662-minute space-time odyssey? Sixty bucks for the Blu-ray and $50 for the DVD, but Amazon has each listed for a few ducats less.

[Image credit: Associated Press]

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Consider this scenario: Randall is an elderly man living alone. He's doing pretty well -- until one day he has a mild stroke. In the weeks that follow, he's not as active as usual, getting up later and not leaving the house. Motion detectors, a mattress sensor and a smart door lock in his home detect the change in his activity patterns. Randall's daughter gets a message prompted by her father's activity data in the cloud, checks in on him and takes him to the doctor. Once he's received treatment, Randall returns home, with marching orders to equip his home with additional sensors and cameras that can track his health and upload information to the cloud for his doctor to monitor.

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Remote Desktop for Windows Phone

Microsoft promised that it would put out a Remote Desktop app for Windows Phone, and it's making good on its word -- provided you're an early adopter, anyway. The company has released a Remote Desktop Preview that requires Windows Phone 8.1 (which itself is considered a preview) just to run. If all the stars align, though, you'll get fairly advanced remote PC access that lets you perform Windows 8's multi-touch gestures and stream "high quality" media. The folks in Redmond haven't said when the finished app will arrive, but we wouldn't be surprised if it launches after Windows Phone 8.1 rolls out in earnest.

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A politician counting money in front of the US Capitol Building

Two of the biggest names in American communications, Verizon and Google, are also two of the highest spenders in the world of political lobbying. In the last two years alone, the two spent a combined $63 million attempting to sway legislation in their favor, and 2014 is gearing up to be another landmark year in Silicon Valley's profits flowing into Washington: the two are already $6 million deep in 2014, with Comcast and AT&T nipping at their heels. Google leads contributions, with over $3.8 million already spent in 2014.

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3D printers have produced some pretty amazing (and scary) stuff, and now a pair of high school seniors have successfully used the tech to ensure they'll never have to eat a soggy hotdog again. Tired of the watery, separated ketchup you get from a bottle that's been sitting unused for a while, the two seniors went about solving the issue with the help of their school's 3D printer. What they ended up with was a replacement cap for bottles that forces the sauce out through an internal, raised tube. As ketchup leaves the bottle at a higher point, the standing water at the cap end stays inside. The simple but elegant fix may seem like a trivial use of 3D printing, but it's the perfect example of rapid prototyping, and the make-it-yourself attitude the technology is all about. There's even talk of the young dudes turning the project into something of a business venture, but if that doesn't work out, there'll almost certainly be scholarship spots for them at the MIT's ketchup vessel innovation department.

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Scribd's e-book subscription service is only six months old, and already it's working hard to hook some big names to convince you that it's worth $9 a month. The company has now snagged a deal with publisher Lonely Planet that'll see hundreds of the latter's travel guides appear on the former's platform. At the same time, the company has added in bookmarking across all devices, so you'll always be able to find that list of restaurants when you're roaming without WiFi. Great, now we've got the theme to the Lonely Planet TV series stuck in our head.

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Head-mounted computing specialists Recon Instruments is building quite a team to take on Google Glass. Last year, Intel offered both cash and its manufacturing and technology expertise, and now the "other" Motorola has followed suit. Motorola Solutions has opened its checkbook and pledged to share its product development and distribution know-how with the Canadian outfit. Why has a company with a pedigree in walkie-talkies and barcode scanners teamed up with Recon? Not only does it have plenty of experience making rugged gadgets that'll likely improve the Jet and Snow2's hardiness, but it also already makes wearable computers on the side. The Motorola HC1, you see, is an enterprise device that's designed to work in extreme environments where it'd be too dangerous to use a phone. Perhaps the two of them will develop a new wearable platform that's as comfortable on the slopes as it is on the oil rig.

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