Digital Crave
  • Lance Armstrong explains how to change a flat tire

    Bizarrely straightforward video from Outside magazine features disgraced cyclist demonstrating in a bike shop

    Not all online videos featuring unexpected celebrities are the same.

    This video from Outside magazine starring Lance Armstrong doesn't go for laughs. Instead, it's strangely practical. So much so that you might wonder if you've missed the joke.

    The disgraced cyclist, who was stripped of his seven Tour de France victories in 2012 and admitted to doping in 2013, appears in a tongue-in-cheek instructional clip in which he educates viewers on how to change a flat tire on a bike.

    His instructions are straightforward and pretty useful for amateur cyclists. And that's what makes the video, which went up earlier this week, so odd. It's just so... normal.

    There's one humorous allusion to rougher times, but for the most part, it's just Lance changing a tire, offering tips and getting his hands dirty, just as if he's a regular bike store employee and not one of the most infamous athletes of all time.

    How did Outside convince Armstrong to make the video?

    “We asked, he said yes — much to our

    Read More »from Lance Armstrong explains how to change a flat tire
  • Opera star entertains Paris Metro commuters

    Christophe Menager gives a comedic performance in a subway station under the City of Light

    Surprises during commutes are rarely pleasant. More often than not, they involve traffic jams, delayed trains or horrible weather that makes getting home a type of Greek odyssey.

    So, we imagine it must have been a nice treat for the Paris commuters who were lucky enough to come across opera star Christophe Menager giving a performance in a bustling Metro station.

    We don't know what Menager is singing about, but we do know that he's giving it his all. According to the person who recorded the two minutes of video, Menager "sometimes goes to the Metro to sing for the people that can't afford to go or wouldn't otherwise be interested in going to opera."

    Of course, the opera, especially as performed in subway stations, isn't for everybody. Some commuters stop to listen and interact, while others hurry past, eager to get to wherever it is they're going. Maybe the opera?

    Follow Mike Krumboltz on Twitter (@mikekrumboltz).

     

    Read More »from Opera star entertains Paris Metro commuters
  • FBI produces short film to warn students about spying on U.S.

    'Game of Pawns' dramatizes story of Glenn Duffie Shriver, who is serving four years in prison

    Move over, Warner Bros. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is getting into the movie business.

    OK, not exactly. But the feds did produce a short film , titled "Game of Pawns," detailing the story of Glenn Duffie Shriver, a recent American college graduate who was sentenced to four years in federal prison after he pled guilty to conspiring to give classified information to authorities in the People's Republic of China.

    After college, Shriver traveled to Shanghai in the mid-2000s. In need of money, he responded to a classified ad to write essays on American-Chinese relations.

    Things escalated. He was given more assignments (and money) and was eventually asked by Chinese officials to infiltrate the U.S. on their behalf by pursuing a career in the Central Intelligence Agency.

    Warning bells must have been going off, but Shriver continued down the road, scoring an interview at CIA headquarters. However, his nerves quickly got the better of him. After choking during a routine polygraph

    Read More »from FBI produces short film to warn students about spying on U.S.
  • We know, we know. You're sick of selfies. We're sick of selfies. Everybody's sick of selfies. We hear you loud and clear.

    But humor us, because this isn't your average, everyday, phone-held-out-at-arm's-length smiling portrait of some goober in front of the Eiffel Tower.

    Far from it. Amit Gupta used a drone to take a 15-second video selfie of two friends, himself, and their dogs from atop Bernal Hill in San Francisco.

    The footage starts with the camera-equipped drone floating a dozen or so feet away from the three men. Then, whoosh! The drone takes off, flying higher and farther from the city until the men and their mutts are mere dots on the horizon.

    All in all, it's a stunning bit of videography and evidence that the selfie isn't dead yet.

    Of course, this isn't the first time somebody has shot a selfie with a drone. The Verge offers a nice roundup of some other drone selfies (dronies?), each of them worth a look.

    Below, an explainer on how the uber-popular "Superman With a GoPro"

    Read More »from Man uses drone to take spectacular selfie atop hill in San Francisco
  • So much for getting a little R and R down south.

    A group of New Yorkers traveled to what many would consider the far less hectic Savannah, Ga., for vacation only to find themselves careening through the streets in a runaway horse-drawn carriage.

    The scene, which was captured on video, shows the horse running rampant, bumping into cars, and generally causing mayhem. The driver was thrown from her perch and broke both her ankles in the fall, according to a report from Fox News.

    The five passengers, which included three children, all escaped from the incident with relatively minor injuries, WSAV reports, despite having to jump from the carriage while it was still in motion.

    Witnesses described the surreal scene to WSAV. Nicole Miller, who was eating a cafe with her husband, saw the horse gallop by. "All of a sudden the horse and carriage trucking by us. It takes a turn and we hear a crash."

    Another witness, Aaron Senne, told WSAV, "I heard the horse coming down and said it sounds like its

    Read More »from Tourists forced to jump from runaway horse carriage in Savannah, Ga.
  • Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum welcomed Iran's foreign minister at his palace, state media agency WAM reported.

    Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif discussed bilateral relations and regional developments with the Sheikh, in a sign of warming ties between the nations.

    Sheikh Mohammed also received an official invitation  to visit Tehran from Iranian leader Hassan Rouhani which "he accepted and appreciated," WAM said.

    United Arab Emirates' Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum (2nd R) meets with Iran Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (2nd L) in Dubai April 15, 2014 in this handout provided by WAM. REUTERS/WAM/Handout via Reuters (UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - Tags: ROYALS POLITICS) NO SALES. NO ARCHIVES. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE


    In an interview with BBC earlier this year, Sheikh Mohammed called for easing of sanctions against Iran.

    Asked if the time is now ripe to lift sanctions against the Islamic Republic, Sheikh Mohammed said: "Iran is our neighbour and we don't want any problem."

    Zarif also met with UAE foreign minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi.


    Iran and the UAE have longstanding trade ties but differ over several issues, including Tehran's control over three Persian Gulf islands claimed by both countries.

    With input from AP

    Read More »from Sheikh Mohammed accepts invitation to Iran
  • Montana congressional candidate Matt Rosendale swears he doesn’t have a problem with drones.

    “I actually consider myself to be very supportive of technology,” Rosendale told Yahoo News in an interview on Tuesday.

    Still, the question had to be asked after Rosendale on Monday released a new campaign ad in which he used a hunting rifle to shoot down a drone.

    The ad opens with an overhead camera angle, with the drone menacingly hovering over the state senator.

    “I’m Matt Rosendale and this is how I'd look from a government drone,” the candidate says as he’s framed dead to rights in a digital set of crosshairs.

    “And this is what I think about it,” Rosendale says as the camera cuts to him cocking and firing a rifle. The camera switches back to the drone pilot’s point of view, with text reading “SIGNAL LOST,” after the simulated gunshot impact shatters the drone’s lens.

    Rosendale, a rancher by trade, is currently running against four other Republicans in a primary contest to replace outgoing

    Read More »from Congressional candidate shoots down drone with hunting rifle in new ad
  • Neil Diamond (Wikimedia Commons)

    Neil Diamond can sing. He can play. He can entertain. And he can also inspire a British woman vacationing in South Africa to download his greatest hits on her phone, leading to an incredible $4,350 bill, the Telegraph reports.

    Of course, the woman, Katie Bryan, wasn't aware what the download would cost her. The math instructor told the Telegraph she discovered the data charge when she returned to the U.K. and received her cellphone bill.

    Bryan, 43, told the Telegraph, "People were playing music through their iPads or on phones through an iPod dock. Someone had put on the Traveling Wilburys but I just fancied hearing some Neil Diamond. I don't know why. He's more my boyfriend's musical taste and I'm more of a James Blunt fan."

    And so Bryan downloaded Diamond's greatest hits for what she thought was £8.99 ($15). Alas, she didn't count on the data charges. The Telegraph reports that Bryan was charged "£8 per megabyte once her 10MB monthly foreign allowance had been used up." All told,

    Read More »from Not-so-sweet Caroline: Woman billed more than $4,000 for Neil Diamond download
  • He's back. 

    Michael Phelps has ended his retirement and will enter his first competition since the 2012 London Games, USA Swimming announced on Monday. Phelps is expected to swim at the Arena Grand Prix in Mesa, Ariz., from April 24-26, a move that is largely seen as his first step toward competing in the 2016 Olympics in Rio. The decorated Olympian resumed training last fall and has completed the mandatory six-month waiting period after re-entering  the U.S. drug-testing program, the Associated Press reported.  

    Phelps' coach, Bob Bowman, told the Chicago Tribune last month that the swimmer would likely focus on "relays and shorter events, including the 100 freestyle and 100 butterfly." 

    “If he swims a meet in the next couple months and does well, he will probably give it a shot in Irvine [at the 2014 U.S. Championships in California in August],” Bowman told the paper. “But he doesn’t have to do that to have a shot at the 2016 Olympics.”

    Phelps has won a record 22 Olympic medals, 18

    Read More »from Michael Phelps ends retirement, takes first step toward competing in 2016 Olympics
  • San Francisco skyline (Mike Krumboltz/Flickr)

    Landlords are supposed to want tenants to stay. Right?

    Welcome to San Francisco, where things don't always make perfect sense. Rent-controlled apartments, where city laws prevent the price of rent increasing by too much, don't come along every day in S.F. If a person has one and they've lived there for years, motivation to move out can be low. Why leave a place with below-market rent in a booming city where new residents are paying through the nose?

    Some landlords, eager to get long-term tenants out so they can raise the rent on a new tenant, are offering residents tens of thousands of dollars to hit the bricks, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. While the practice isn't new, it is seeing a renaissance in light of the recent influx of tech workers willing and able to pay more rent.

    This is a controversial topic in San Francisco, where the city has become divided over whether the resurgence of tech workers is hurting the city's culture.

    So what is a rent-controlled apartment and how

    Read More »from Some landlords in SF offering tenants big bucks to move out. Here's why

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