Selasa, 23 Agustus 2016

BREAKING NEWS 81 mins agoItalian town of Amatrice struck by 6.2 magnitude earthquake; 'Half the town is gone'The central Italian town of Amatrice was badly damaged by a 6.2 magnitude earthquake that struck early on Wednesday, with people trapped under the rubble, the town's mayor said. Half the town is gone,"ReutersCancer Patient Beaten to Death Outside of Illinois Treatment CenterShannon Vincel, a St. Louis native and a cancer patient, was beaten to death in Illinois after flying to the state to receive radiation treatments, according to reports. The 46-year-old travelled to Zion, Illinois on Monday for medical care and was attacked around 9:30 p.m. while she and another patient were waiting for a hospital shuttle to pick them up from their hospital residence, KSDK reports. "She was just sitting there waiting for the shuttle to pick her up and take her to treatment," Anita Adams, Vincel's mother told KSDK.PeopleAccused rapist sentenced to no jail time so he can have a ‘college experience’His nickname in high school was “David the Rapist,” according to one of his victims. Two seniors at a Massachusetts high school told police they were at a party with David Becker, 18, in April when they went upstairs to a bedroom and talked to Becker until they fell asleep. They said they woke up to Becker sexually assaulting them, and he apologized to one of the victims in a text message the next day, saying “Sorry, it’s my fault.” The victim responded with a text telling Becker “don’t even worry about it,” but later told police that she said this because “she did not know what else to say.” Becker said he had no sexual contact with one of the women, and said he thought his assault of the secondMiami HeraldAn Exhausted Conor McGregor In His Underwear May Be The Most Awkward Fan Photo EverConor McGregor and Nate Diaz fought (almost) non-stop for 25 minutes at UFC 202. As we saw after the fight, Conor McGregor’s leg was busted up from throwing so many leg kicks, and needed crutches to make his way around the bowels of the arena. Was this your only chance to take a picture (a non-fist pose at least) with a drained Conor McGregor in his undies?UPROXXUsain Bolt's 'first lady' Kasi Bennett reacts to cheating controversy as Jamaican sprinter lands in LondonIt looks like Usain Bolt's antics may well have landed him in the dog house. The Olympic champion proved he was fast on and off the track after he was caught on camera enjoying the company of three different women during a weekend of partying in Rio and it looks like his girlfriend Kasi Bennett was not impressed. Bolt made headlines after WhatsApp photos emerged online showing him in bed with 20-year-old Rio student named Jady Duarte, after the sports star's 30th birthday on Sunday (21 August.) The mother-of-two is the alleged widow of drug kingpin Douglas Donato Pereira, also known as Diná Terror.International Business Times UKLinda Thompson Calls Caitlyn Jenner's Secret 'Devastating'Thompson reveals how she discovered her then-husband's secret and what it did to their marriage.ABC News Videos10 Truly Disgusting Facts About Ancient Roman LifeAncient Rome holds a mythic place in our imaginations. It’s the land of historical epics like Ben-Hur and Gladiator, where men in golden armor ride chariots and emperors are fed grapes in reclining chairs. Real life in Rome, though, was quite a bit less glamorous. In a time before modern sanitation and medicine, getting through an average day was a difficult task—and far more disgusting than you could ever imagine. 10 People Washed Their Mouths Out With Urine In ancient Rome, pee was such big business that the government had special taxes in place just for urine sales. There were people who made their living just from collecting urine. Some would gather it at public urinals. Others went door-to-doorListverseJust how dangerous is it to travel at 20% the speed of light?Breakthrough Starshot is one of the more exciting scientific ideas that has popped up in the past decade, with its promise to deliver hardware to the nearest star in time for many people currently alive to see it. While the idea would work on paper as an extrapolation of existing technology, there are a lot of details that need to be thoroughly checked out, because it's possible that one of them could present a show-stopper. There's a bit of good news there: Breakthrough Starshot is apparently funding the needed research to give its concept a thorough vetting. A recent posting to the arXiv describes a careful look at the odds of a spacecraft surviving an extended journey at the speeds plannedArs TechnicaJ.K. Rowling just revealed something about Dean Thomas, and we’ll never be the same againIn case you missed it — and it’s fine if you did, it’s cool if you’re not searching the internet for new Harry Potter…Hello GigglesHeartbreaking New Details About the Death of the 2-Year-Old Disney Alligator Victim"I saw it come out to get him​."​​CosmopolitanDavid Robinson: Warriors' window will 'end relatively quickly'Kevin Durant will turn 28 years old on Sept. 29. Steph Curry doesn't turn 29 until March 14.CSN Bay AreaMiss. Man's Life Upended by 8th Grade PaddlingWhen then-8th grader Trey Clayton entered the Independence High School assistant principal's office for a paddling in 2011, everyone—school officials, his mom, even Trey himself—thought it was a preferable alternative to being suspended. "I'm not going to lie, I was in a lot of trouble during school," Clayton said. "Every time, they gave me the option to get a paddling or get sent home, and I took the paddling." But that March, the decision to take paddling over suspension would lead to weeks out of school, years of court battles—and ultimately Clayton leaving school entirely. Advocates of physical discipline often point to it as an effective means of getting students in line without missingEducation WeekMcMansions Define Ugly in a New Way: They’re a Bad InvestmentShoddy construction, ostentatious design—and low resale values.BloombergAmerican Airlines is sending 20 MD-80 jets to an airplane graveyardCall it forced retirement. American Airlines is sending 20 of its McDonnell Douglas MD-80s on their final flights on Tuesday. The largest US carrier by traffic is slimming its fleet to make room for newer, more fuel-efficient aircraft. The MD-80s fit that bill in the 1980s. American and other carriers stocked up on the twin-engine…QuartzSimone Biles' fierce beach photo started an internet conversation on the male gazeAfter the Olympics competition ended, a few of Team USA's gold medal-winning gymnasts took a well-deserved beach day in Rio. When Simone Biles shared a shot of herself and teammates Madison Kocian and Aly Raisman displaying their strong gymnast abs, a Twitter conversation erupted, proving that women are subject to the male gaze no matter their accomplishments. SEE ALSO: Sound the alarms: Simone Biles finally met Zac Efron Firstly, here's the ab fierceness, posted by Biles on both Twitter and Instagram. Many Twitter reactions were from supportive women, in awe of the gymnasts' rock-hard abs: However, one Twitter troll shamelessly shared the picture with the caption, "y'all find this attractive? lmaaoo." One mic drop-worthy response succinctly shut him down: Crystal's response not only comments on this particular situation, but also on the male gaze on a larger scale. Her tweet points out why men shouldn't comment on women's looks or bodies – because women don't exist to be looked at. Biles, Kocian and Raisman's bodies are impressively strong and toned because they are three of the best gymnasts in the world, and not because they are trying to seem attractive to men. Well done, Crystal. [ H/T: BuzzFeed ] BONUS: Doughnuts!MashableTrump gets all Obama on immigrationOn immigration, Donald Trump is now attempting an adjustment toward Obama that can only be described as huge on a Trumpian scale.CNBCDodge should worry about Ford’s next-gen Mustang GT500Ford is in the final stages of developing the next Mustang Shelby GT500. Aimed directly at the Dodge Challenger Hellcat, the super-'Stang could use a new, twin-turbocharged 5.0-liter V8 engine tuned to provide well over 700 horsepower.Digital TrendsSee Sasha and Malia Obama's Post-Vacation Homecoming LooksFollowing their European tour with First Lady Michelle Obama earlier last summer, the first daughters are bringing their chic sense of style to the streets of NYC for a father-daughter weekend with the President. Since moving into The White House eight years ago, Sasha and Malia Obama's style has transformed along the way. Click through for a look back at the teenagers' best fashion moments over the years.From Harper's BAZAARHarper's BazaarNorth West & Mason Disick Hold Hands In Adorable InstaIt's been well-established that North West and cousin Penelope Disick are the closest of friends. Now it seems that Kimye's little girl also has a tight bond with her older cousin, Penelope's 6-year-old brother Mason.Refinery 29 UKA suspicious number of iPhones are breaking right before an iPhone launchPlanned obsolescence is one of those quasi-conspiracy theories that sits right alongside the breakfast-industrial complex as making you a weird dinner party guest. But it's true that modern electronics have a shelf life, and a bunch of year-old iPhones spontaneously dying right before the launch of the iPhone 7 is particularly bad timing. IFixit, a company that specializes in the world of repairing electronic devices, has highlighted a problem with the TouchID sensors of iPhone 6 and 6 Plus devices. In a blog post, the site said "there’s no way to tell exactly how many phones are afflicted with what we’re calling Touch Disease, but every repair tech we spoke to told us that the problem is incredibly common." DON'T MISS: The iPhone 7 will obliterate the Galaxy Note 7 and every other smartphone The site has labelled the afflication as "Touch Disease." Symptoms include a flickering gray bar along the top of the screen, and a badly functioning TouchID sensor. It appears to be a fault with the touchscreen controller chips attached to the logic board, which control the touchscreen and the TouchID sensor. It's not a fault that Apple will fix -- generally, the company won't do repairs that involve soldering things to the logic board -- but unauthorized repair techs with the right tools can fix the problem reasonably cheaply. Apple stores are turning away customers with the problem since they're out of warranty. That said, it's a recognized problem, so if enough people complain, there's a chance that Apple will have to take action. That's what happened with 2011 Macbooks, which started suffering from video glitches and unexpected restarts. Apple eventually created an extended repair programme, which fixed the problem on eligible Macbooks for free. As passionate anti-Apple repair technician Louis Rossman explains in the video above, it's really an Apple design deficiency that's led to the problem, and Apple has made things worse by failing to fix the problem, and telling users their only option is to buy a new phone (rather than having it fixed independently).BGR NewsMichigan loses 4-star commit after spelling his name wrongMichigan sent the wrong letter to Aubrey Solomon, and then spelled his name wrong.Sporting News5 busts who will destroy your fantasy football team this seasonIt’s fantasy football draft season, and For the Win is here to help you avoid drafting any duds. Here are five players we think are being over-valued heading into the 2016 season… 1. Devonta Freeman, RB Falcons The biggest concern with Freeman is the potential emergence of Tevin Coleman. The second-year back is the more physically talented of Atlanta’s two young running backs but lost the starting job to Freeman last season after multiple injuries and a lack of comfort in the Falcons’ zone-based running attack. If Coleman stays healthy and looks better in the system after gaining a year of experience, he should see a much larger role and cut into Freeman’s carries. There’s also the small issueFor The WinAre Ariana Grande and Mac Miller a Thing?After a public makeout session, rumors are swirling that Mac Miller and Ariana Grande are a thing.ComplexPrivate lives are exposed as WikiLeaks spills its secretsCAIRO (AP) — WikiLeaks' giant data dumps have rattled the National Security Agency, the U.S. Democratic Party, and the Saudi foreign ministry. But its spectacular mass-disclosures have also included the personal information of hundreds of people — including sick children, rape victims and mental health patients, The Associated Press has found.Associated PressClock running out on Clinton Foundation probe?Former Whitewater Independent Counsel Robert Ray on the potential political fallout from the Clinton Foundation investigation.Fox Business VideosHarley-Davidson Unveils New Milwaukee-Eight EngineHarley-Davidson Unveils New Milwaukee-Eight Engine The worst-kept secret in motorcycling has finally been confirmed: Harley-Davidson has pulled the cover off an all-new powerplant: the Milwaukee-Eight. The ninth big twin in H-D's history, the engine getsRideApartI'm worth $1.5 million, and I'd never recommend paying off your mortgage earlyI hate debt. Owing money feels terrible and dirty. I’ve been there. Coming out of college, I had $60,000 in loans and it was suffocating. I can clearly remember the day that I made the final payment, 15 years later. I still have the letter that from Sallie Mae congratulating me on paying off my loans. Good riddance. However, I willingly have mortgage debt. My current home set me back $176,000 and I had the money to pay cash. I briefly considered it, but instead took out a mortgage. I kept the money invested, mostly in an S&P 500 index fund. Let’s take a look at how the experiment is coming along. DEBT RULES! (SOMETIMES)Business InsiderPenn State Professor Allegedly Pushed to Death Off Quarry Ledge by Pair Who Thought They Were in His WillA Penn State University professor is dead and two suspects – including a women the professor allegedly proposed to twice – are in custody over an alleged murder plot for money, police say. The body of Ronald Bettig, 56, an associate professor of communications, was discovered Aug. 17 at the bottom of a quarry in Centre County, Pennsylvania, two days after he was reported missing by one of the suspects. George Ishler Jr., 39, allegedly told police in that missing persons report that he and Danelle Geier, 32, were friends of the victim.PeopleGlass Bridge Opens to the Public in ChinaThe world's highest and longest glass bridge opened in China over the weekend, and 8,000 visitors turned up to see the architectural feat.The bridge was designed by Haim Dotan, an Israeli architect. It is 430 meters (1,410 feet) long, and 6 meters (20 feet) wide, according to Yahoo News.The bridge, with its glass panels suspended 300 meters (984 feet) above Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon in the Hunan province, underwent testing before all those gawkers were allowed to jump on it.Over the weekend, people posed for photographs on the vertigo-inducing bridge. Favorite poses included selfies against the glass, and mid-air jumping pics.Travel+LeisureThe New Camaro ZL1 Will Hit 60 mph in First GearA ridiculously tall first gear could give the car a startlingly quick 0-60 time.​Road & TrackPokémon Sun and Moon lets you throw Pokémon around for cashIt's not as bad as it sounds, promise Pokémon Sun and Moon, as with every new Pokémon entry, promises tons of new content and features not seen in previous Pokémon games. But in the new gameplay video above, one of Sun and Moon’s minor additions is introduced, and it doubles as its most startling feature thus far: a minigame that pays you to chuck a poor, unsuspecting Pokémon into the ocean.Comics magazine V Jump uploaded the clip above, which shows a player hunting down various Pyukumuku, the new sea cucumber Pokémon, that can be found chilling on the Alola region’s otherwise peaceful ...PolygonRumor Roundup: Lesnar’s next feud, new Universal champ, more!Speculating on the rumors surrounding pro wrestling is a favored pastime of many fans, perhaps second only to actually watching the matches. In this daily column, we take a look at the latest rumors being churned out by the pro wrestling rumor mill. Important reminder: Rumors are just that -- rumors. None of this has been confirmed as legitimate news or fact, it's just circulating around the pro wrestling rumor mill. Remember, take it all with a grain of salt. Rumors for the Day: WWE is working toward a Shane McMahon vs. Brock Lesnar match, probably for next year’s Royal Rumble. Roman Reigns is the early frontrunner to win next week’s Fatal 4Way and become the second Universal champion. ThereCageside SeatsThere Is a New Suspect in the 'Making A Murderer' Case​​According to Steven Avery's new lawyer.​EsquireIs This Shocking Leaked 'Spider-Man: Homecoming' Call Sheet For Real?Spider-Man: Homecoming is filming now, so we’ve been slowly figuring out which characters the actors are playing, with the most recent reveal being that Zendaya Coleman’s character “Michelle” may actually be (spoiler?) Mary Jane Watson, which some people might throw a hissy fit over (but not James Gunn). Michael Keaton’s casting as the Vulture was recently confirmed, but he’s not the only villain (uh oh), because Michael Chernus was recently cast as the Tinkerer. The call sheet — which may prove to be fake — was for a scene set in Midtown High School, with Spider-Man Tom Holland present alongside classmates played by Zendaya (listed as “Z” with her character referred to as “Michelle”), Jacob Batalon (Ned Leeds), Tony Revolori, and Laura Harrier.UPROXXRamen noodles: The unexpected gold standard in prison currencyRamen noodles have become the most valuable "currency" among U.S. prisoners – overtaking the more traditional cigarettes, stamps and envelopes – a study reveals.CNBCEveryone is laughing at Derrick Rose for his technically correct Knicks analysisAs it stands, the Knicks technically have a chance to go 82-0. Nick DePaula of The Vertical has an excellent feature about Derrick Rose and what he’s been up to in the lead up to the 2016-17 NBA season and preparing to play for the Knicks. In the midst of talking about his new shoes and the aftermath of being traded, Rose dropped a strange, but technically true quote about his expectations for the Knicks this upcoming season.SB NationArcheologists discover mysterious stone structure underneath Neolithic garbage pileArchaeologists working in the Orkney Islands of Scotland have discovered large stone slabs belonging to a mysterious, ancient structure. But perhaps even more puzzling than the stones is the fact that they were found underneath Scotland's "largest Neolithic rubbish dump," BBC reports. The structure is approximately 33 feet wide, and is made up of pieces of stone 13 feet in length; the complex could be as old as 5,000 years. A human arm bone found nearby might have belonged to the founder of the structure. "The sheer size and scale of the stones unearthed are unprecedented on this site," site director Nick Card told the BBC. "The way the stones are built into the construction is also unique toThe WeekFormer Fox News Host Andrea Tantaros Sues NetworkAndrea Tantaros, a former Fox News host, charged in a lawsuit filed Monday in New York City that top executives at the network punished her for complaining about chief Roger Ailes' inappropriate behaviorPeopleLeague of Legends patch 6.17 takes aim at the jungle, many other changesPatch 6.17 will be the final large patch before Worlds rolls around this fall, and Riot Games is making the most of it. The pair has dominated the jungle for the past year, and Riot has finally decided to do something about it. Both have had their mobility skills’ cooldowns increased so that they can’t Tunnel (Rek’Sai) or Body Slam (Gragas) more than once per gank.Taylor CockeDwight Gooden bashes 'Lucifer' Darryl Strawberry: 'He was never there for me'Dwight Gooden on relationship with Darryl Strawberry: "While I was there for him, he obviously was never there for me."Sporting NewsApple is about to make a huge mistake, co-founder warnsThe co-founder of Apple has predicted backlash if one rumor of the upcoming iPhone 7 holds merit. Steve Wozniak said a lot of customers will be frustrated if Apple removes the headphone jack, without fixing pre-existing issues with the iPhone’s Bluetooth. “If it’s missing the 3.5 mm earphone jack, that’s going to tick off a lot of people,” Wozniak told The Australian Financial Review. “I would not use Bluetooth … I don’t like wireless. I have cars where you can plug in the music, or go through Bluetooth, and Bluetooth just sounds so flat for the same music.” Wozniak said he expects people will still be able to connect wired headphones into the lightning port of the iPhone, but they will haveNew York PostMan-made "wind trees" will finally make it possible to power homes using turbinesPicture a steady breeze blowing through the leaves of a tree. Now imagine these leaves could do more than simply churn in the current of air—what if they could capture the wind and transform it into renewable energy? Energy from wind is the fastest-growing source of electricity in the world, according to the Union of…QuartzThe Pentagon's largest weapons supplier landed a deal that could net $10 billionThe Pentagon's largest weapons supplier has been awarded a contract for a deal that could end up...Business InsiderAnalogue’s new NES remake ditches Famicom parts, lowers price to $449The Analogue Nt Mini is a lovingly crafted recreation of NES hardware, that's compatible with 100 percent of its games and peripherals -- the only catch is that it costs a whopping $449.Digital TrendsExclusive: Rick Harrison Sets The Record Straight on Pawn PlazaRick Harrison wants to clear up some things about Pawn Plaza, his container park shopping center next to Gold & Silver Pawn Shop, where Pawn Stars is filmed. In the past week, Smoke’s Poutinerie shuttered, as did Inna Gadda di Pizza and Pawn Donut. "I’ve had a few people moving out," Harrison tells Eater Vegas exclusively.Eater VegasQuick-thinking seal escapes killer whale attack by jumping on a boatThat is one lucky seal. A clever seal desperate for its life found an interesting escape route recently, using a few unsuspecting humans and their boat to seek refuge from a pod of hungry orca whales. In the clip, uploaded by YouTuber Kirk Frase who did not specify the location, the men on the boat appear to be photographing the seal hunting. When suddenly, the sea dog hops on to the back of the boat. SEE ALSO: Ninja seal faces off with killer whale, performs skillful last-minute dodge "Just stay there,will you? Fucking stop jumping off," one man says to the seal. Apparently the seal had already jumped on the boat, then jumped off again and realized that was a terrible idea. The YouTuber alsoMashableThese 4 colors can be the kiss of death when selling your homePainting your home with a weird color either inside or out could repel prospective buyers.MarketWatchElon Musk's SolarCity to Build "Solar Shingles" For Your HouseInstead of going ​on​ your roof, these panels would replace it. ​Popular MechanicsThe 50 Most Delish Low-Carb DishesWait, you mean there's actually something missing?From DelishDelishWoman Taking Photo Dies in Plunge From Cliff After Tripping on Flip-FlopsLorena Barrera, 21, died in a tumble from a Southern California cliff.Inside EditionParrot's Disco Is a Fixed-Wing Consumer Drone for $1,300Somewhere between the enthusiast's gasoline-powered scale model of a Cessna 172 and the Reaper and Predator drones that fly secret kill missions for the Obama administration, there's an untapped middle ground of consumer-friendly, fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicles. Drone maker Parrot took its first step onto that ground today by announcing the commercial availability of the Disco, which it describes as the first fixed-wing consumer drone. Unveiled at CES in January, the 50mph machine has a battery life of 45 minutes, as well as all the autopilot, GPS, and other easy-to-use features you'd expect from Parrot. Its $1,299 sticker price, though, is significantly higher than that of most Parrot drones.PC MagazinePalestinian suspect in police killings beaten to deathThe alleged ringleader in the killing of two Palestinian policemen has died in custody after being beaten by security forces, a senior local official said on Tuesday. The officers were killed in the West Bank city of Nablus last week when gunmen opened fire on security forces. Ahmed Halawa, the alleged leader of the attackers, was arrested by police overnight and taken to the city's Jneid prison, Nablus governor Akram Rajub told the official Palestinian news agency WAFA.AFP5 Ways to Avoid Taxes on Your Social Security BenefitsA few strategies can reduce (or eliminate) the taxes you'll owe on your benefits.Kiplinger.comCourteney Cox Opens Up About 'Brutal' Breakup With Johnny McDaid and Criticism About Her AppearanceThe 52-year-old actress got real while fighting for survival with Bear Grylls.Entertainment TonightNCIS: New Orleans: Vanessa Ferlito Has the Team on Edge! — Fall TV First LookBased on this exclusive first photo, it is by no means “happy to see me” when Vanessa Ferlito‘s G-woman arrives on NCIS: New Orleans this fall. As previously reported, the Graceland alum has joined the CBS series’ cast as Tammy Gregorio, a tough and acerbic FBI Special Agent who is sent from D.C. to investigate Pride’s team — triggered by the departure of Meredith Brody (Zoe McLellan) in the wake of that season-ending Homeland Security/Agent Russo hullabaloo. A by-the-book bureaucrat, Gregorio brings with her a completely different way of doing things — as well as a mysterious past — putting her at odds with both the team and the town. In New Orleans‘ Season 3 premiere (airing Tuesday, Sept.TVLineClinton presidency would stack the deck: Ann Coulter"There will be no hope for any Republican winning another election," the conservative commentator and best-selling author tells CNBC.CNBC VideosKevin White will take Bears offense to next levelBefore anyone counts out the Chicago Bears offense this year, there is one last weapon still pending... wide receiver Kevin White. The post Kevin White will take Bears offense to next level appeared first on Cover32.Cover32Lincoln, Honda, Toyota, BMW are tops in customer satisfaction (Acura, VW not so much)Over the past few years, car owners have become increasingly dissatisfied with their vehicles. But a new study from the American Customer Satisfaction Index suggests that for most automakers, consumer sentiment has made a turn for the better. ACSI's 2016 Automobile Report polled 3,776 auto customers, asking them to evaluate their experiences with a wide range of car brands, using a scale of 0 (not at all satisfied) to 100 (over the moon). Most of the questions consumers were asked had to do with a car's design or performance--how it looked on the inside and outside, how it handled on the road, and so on. However, there were a couple of questions that related more directly to the buying experience, like how easy the automaker's website was to navigate and how pleased respondents were with their warranties. ALSO SEE: Honda sees 'fit' to leave things alone with 2017 Fit The 2015 ACSI survey saw continued declines in satisfaction, which was attributed to several years of high-profile recalls. In 2016, however, the average ACSI score climbed for the first time since 2012. On ACSI's 100-point scale, the average score in 2016 is 82, up 3.8 percent from last year. Findings What's especially interesting about the 2016 ACSI Automobile Report is the way that mass-market brands stack up to their luxury siblings. In many other surveys--whether they concern satisfaction with cars, satisfaction with the buying experience, or the passion that vehicles inspire in their owners--luxury vehicles often take the top spots, with mass-market brands bringing up the rear. But the 2016 Automobile Report shows a fairly even split at both ends of the chart. As you can see above, Ford's luxury marque, Lincoln took top honors in this year's survey, earning 87 points (up five percent from last year). However, Honda was right on its tail, with a score of 86 (up eight percent). Toyota and BMW tied for the number three spot, with 85 points each (both up four percent). This trend could continue, as luxury and mass-market automakers roll out similar upgrades, particularly those focused on safety, self-driving, and infotainment. ACSI Chairman Claes Fornell notes that "The rise of mass-market vehicles may well be at the expense of luxury brands in the sense that buyers now see little differentiation between luxury cars and regular ones. If there is little difference, why pay more? Exclusivity may not be enough." At the very bottom of this year's rankings was Acura, which has suffered on other surveys as of late. Its score of 76 represented a tumble of eight percent from last year. Volkswagen didn't fare much better, with a score of 78. That was three percent lower than in 2015, and its scores could fall much further, given the ongoing Dieselgate scandal. ACSI's David VanAmburg explains: "The combination of fines and fallen stock price are a big hit to Volkswagen’s finances, but it may prove even harder to recover from the reputational hit the company will take for deceiving customers and the general public. Many customers or would-be customers could be turned-off of VW for life and it’s hard to put a value on that." What's also interesting is that increased satisfaction among U.S. brands has eroded some consumer sentiment that once saw Asian marques as superior. On average, Asian and European brands scored 82 points on the ACSI survey, while Detroit was right behind, at 81 points. Among domestic marques, Ford held the lead, with an average score of 84 points, GM was in the middle with 81, and Fiat Chrysler brought up the rear with 78. P.S. ACSI's study focused on the largest automakers doing business in the U.S., based on market share. That left out a number of smaller brands, including well-known, well-loved ones like Porsche and Tesla. Because they have less representation in the market, consumer familiarity with those brands is more limited, meaning that there's a smaller amount of survey data and a greater chance that scores could be distorted and skew up or down.The Car ConnectionA lost spacecraft is talking to NASA again after nearly 2 years in the voidSomewhere on the other side of the sun, almost directly opposite to Earth, a 9-year-old NASA spacecraft has drifted aimlessly through the void, unable to establish contact with our planet, since Oct. 1, 2014. Each STEREO spacecraft launched in 2006 and began circling the sun in slightly different yet Earth-like orbits. This also allowed NASA to get amazing 3D views of solar flares, coronal mass ejections, huge loops of plasma, and other solar activity.Business Insider

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