Facebook crowdsourcing gives lonely boy 1.4 million friends

Being 10-years-old is hard enough -- and add in an isolating syndrome like Asperger's and making friends can be even more difficult.

Such is the case of Colin. He is a 10-year-old boy who lives in Michigan and is on the lower end of the autism spectrum. Despite his efforts to make friends, he is usually made fun of and eats his lunch in the school office because other kids won't let him sit at their tables, according to his mother.

When Colin's mother, Jennifer Cunningham, asked him if he wanted a birthday party, he responded that there wasn't any point because he didn't have friends. That's when she decided to surprise him by creating a "Happy Birthday Colin" Facebook page. … Read more

Editing your Facebook Look Back video

This week, to celebrate turning 10, Facebook rolled out a sentimental campaign that automatically created videos for each user, based on photos and posts from the account, called Look back. My Facebook feed has been full of these videos all week.

The only problem with Look Back is that the photos aren't always that flattering or representative of what some users feel best represents their personal Facebook experience. Or, you know, maybe an ex or three are shown in the video.

When it first launched, Facebook didn't allow users to edit the videos, but as of today that'… Read more

Bluetooth beacons coming to ballparks

CNET Update demos the next step for Bluetooth:

In this episode of Update:

- Wish Google a happy 15th birthday and learn how the search engine is evolving to better understand long questions and phrases. If you're nostalgic for the early days of Google, have a chuckle when searching the phrase "Google in 1998".

- Workout with Xbox Fitness, coming to Xbox One users with a Live Gold subscription. The program features celebrity trainers and uses the Kinect to check vitals, like heart rate. It's also smart enough to tell how hard you're punching. The … Read more

Chromebooks land at more retail stores

CNET Update is charging up:

In this episode of Update:

- Before you buy that cheap Chromebook at Walmart, learn if you can live with it.

- Don't be surprised if your kid starts using a Surface RT tablet at school.

- Chip in for the new group Amazon Birthday Gift on Facebook.

- Avoid a Z10 security breach with the latest BlackBerry 10.1 update.

- Watch how AT&T's solar charging stations work in New York City.

CNET Update delivers the tech news you need in under three minutes. Watch Bridget Carey every afternoon for … Read more

Track birthdays in Birthday Sweet

The App Store is filled with tools to help you remember birthdays, send cards or simply birthdays to your calendar on Facebook or your contacts on your phone. Birthday Sweet is another of those tools, and while it has a number of features that make it powerful, it is mostly a rehash of similar tools already found on Facebook with the unfortunate presence of too many ads and upgrade screens.

When you install Birthday Sweet, which is free in its Lite version, you will be asked for access to your iPhone's contacts. Those contacts are then swept for birthdays. … Read more

Google Play celebrates its first birthday with special deals

Ever wanted something specific from the Google Play store but didn't want to fork over the cash for it? Well, maybe this is the week to do it.

Google announced today that in honor of Google Play's first birthday, it was offering a week of deals and discounts in its media and app store.

"It was just a year ago today that we launched this amazing shop on the interwebs to offer the best in digital content," the company wrote on its Google Play Web site. "Since the best parties are the ones that send … Read more

Facebook Graph Search takes on Google

Tuesday's CNET Update is searching for friends who put useful data on Facebook:

Today's tech news roundup looks at Facebook's Graph Search, a new smart-search tool that focuses on specific details within people, photos, places and interests. Instead of searching with a keyword, like on Google, users would narrow down different fields to find data. Some examples:

- Search for friends in your city that like the show Fringe, and it can help you organize a watch party for the finale.

- Search for Mexican restaurants in Palo Alto that your friends have been to, and avoid … Read more

How to stand out among birthday well-wishers on Facebook

"Happy birthday! Have a great day!"

Perhaps you're a bit more creative than the above greeting, but even the most clever among us have probably run out of ways to wish friends a happy birthday on Facebook.

Thankfully, an enterprising Reddit user whose handle I do not wish to repeat in this space offered a handy and simple tip: search YouTube for "happy birthday" and your friend's name. You will be surprised by the volume and variety of videos available.

Sure, your friend will be sung happy birthday wishes by a random stranger or … Read more

Schedule alarms, open Web sites automatically, and more with SNV Timer

The publishers describe SNV Timer as a reminder program, but it actually includes three separate applications designed to manage shutdown operations, user-set alerts, and more. While many will see this diversity as a benefit, others will find that the lack of integration between programs and the redundancy of some functions negatively affect SNV Timer's usefulness.

When you install SNV Timer, you'll actually get SNV Timer, SNV Notepad, and SNV Calendar, each with its own desktop icon. SNV Timer does just what its name implies: it allows you to choose a specific time or number of hours for whatever … Read more

The 404 1,140: Where 99 problems is still a lot of problems (podcast)

Leaked from today's 404 episode:

- Artist encourages Apple to "Think Different" with Steve Jobs action figure sculpture.

- Man mistakenly sexts entire contact list, lands in jail.

- Jay-Z helms star-studded Barclays Center opening.

- Today is the 30th anniversary of the first CD sale in Japan...Steve Guttenberg reflects.

- Key set available for $150 on eBay provides an all-access pass to NYC.… Read more