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Amazon workers' lawsuit to be heard by US Supreme Court

The US Supreme Court selects very few cases to hear, but it appears a case involving Amazon workers is on its way to the country's highest court.

The Supreme Court decided on Monday to hear a case about employees having to wait in long lines to go through security checks at the end of their shifts, according to Reuters. The case will address whether the e-commerce giant should pay workers for this time spent, which can last as long as 30 minutes.

The employees involved in this case worked at Amazon warehouses in Nevada; they are former temporary workers … Read more

Pics.io Edit aims for better online photo editing

Top Tech Photo, a Ukrainian company specializing in onilne photo editing, has built new tool called Edit.

Top Tech Photo already had launched a site called Pics.io tool for online handling of photos in some raw image formats from higher-end cameras. The new Pics.io Edit site, though, is for more ordinary JPEG, PNG, and BMP image formats so far.

It's got a variety of controls for adjusting brightness, tone curves, color saturation, and a few other attributes. It also can convert shots into black-and-white or sepia-tone versions.

"Our aim is to make online photo editor as … Read more

Samsung hints at Galaxy S5 features

CNET Update reads the signs:

In this episode of Update:

- Get a clue of what Samsung has in store for the Galaxy S5 smartphone.

- Expect to hear news of Nokia's low-end Android phone later this month.

- Learn more about the redesigned PlayStation Vita that's arriving in North America this spring.

- Have an easier time chatting and playing with friends when the Xbox One update arrives in March.

- Look forward to a future of wireless charging where more devices are compatible.

CNET Update delivers the tech news you need in under three minutes. Watch … Read more

Facebook ordered to take down anti-Semitic page

Facebook is under fire from the Anti-Defamation League about a page titled "Jewish Ritual Murder." The group, which battles anti-Semitism and racism, has ordered the social network to remove the page.

"The 'Jewish Ritual Murder' page on Facebook perpetuates age-old anti-Semitic propaganda, and it should be removed immediately," ADL national director Abraham H. Foxman said in a statement. "It is profoundly offensive, has no socially redeeming value, and adds nothing to any legitimate marketplace of ideas."

The page in question hasn't had much action from users. It only has a handful of likes, … Read more

Facebook file-sharing app Pipe shifting from Flash to WebRTC

Pipe just launched a new version of its Facebook file-sharing app, illustrating that the shift away from Adobe Systems' Flash Player to Web standards is getting steadily easier.

The new Pipe app uses a newer standard called WebRTC for real-time communications on the Web, the company said Monday. That standard got its start for Skype-like video and audio chats, but it's got a data-sharing ability too. The brains of the new app run in JavaScript, the universal language of Web programming, with a boost from the AngularJS project that makes JavaScript more manageable.

Pipe lets people send files as … Read more

Get ready for multicolor fonts -- maybe in motion, too

For a few decades now, fonts have been monochromatic -- just the thing for putting black ink on white paper. But publishing has gone digital, and the era of the multicolored font is beginning.

The Motion Pictures Experts Group (MPEG) standards group last week began a project to standardize chromatic fonts -- those with multiple colors. Vladimir Levantovsky, a Monotype Imaging employee who serves as chairman of the group's font work, said he expects to merge technology from Mozilla, Adobe, Google, and Microsoft into a standard.

The impetus for the work was the need to support emoji, the colorful emoticons, icons, and pictures that gradually are expanding in use. But the work will expand to traditional typography, too, Levantovsky said. … Read more

Music vid shows digital retouch of woman in real time

It's the worst-kept secret of fashion magazines: the models who appear on the pages therein are Photoshopped to the moon and back. It's this method of perpetuating unrealistic standards of beauty that form the basis of a new music video from Hungarian singer Csemer Bolglarka, aka Boggie.

The song, called "Nouveau Parfum," shows Boggie undergoing a digital makeover treatment in real time as she sings. It is not, in fact, a real retouching session but rather clever CGI. For a start, the interface looks like no photo-editing software we've seen, and there's no photo-editing software, that we know of, that can work in video in real time. Moreover, the video credits list VFX artists -- but it's still very clever. … Read more

New year, new energy standards for fridges

The new congressional budget might give incandescent light bulbs a reprieve from new federal energy conservation guidelines, but new standards for large appliance energy efficiency remain intact. These new guidelines, made possible by the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act and set forth by the Department of Energy, outline the maximum amount of allowable energy in kilowatt-hours per year (kWh/yr) for residential refrigerators, freezers, and fridge-freezer combos. On September 15, 2014, these standards will be changing -- both for regular and Energy Star-certified appliances. That may seem far off, but some overachieving manufacturers are already selling their redesigned models … Read more

MPAA joins Web standards group amid video DRM dispute

The movie business now will have a direct voice in a controversy about how to handle copy protection of videos on the Web.

That's because the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has joined the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), a group that creates Web standards, such as the HTML technology that underlies every Web page on the Internet.

"Just met with W3C CEO Jeffrey Jaffe. We're excited to join W3C and look forward to listening, learning and contributing," tweeted Alex Deacon, the MPAA's senior vice president for Internet Technology at the MPAA. Jaffe has … Read more

Vimeo speeds its online videos, goes HTML5 by default

Vimeo has sped up its video-streaming technology and made the shift from Flash-powered video to HTML5 by default, the company said Tuesday.

The new player software improves performance, social links, and post-production capabilities, Vimeo Chief Technology Officer Andrew Pile told CNET. It loads in half the time -- not only when the video player populates on a Web page, but also when people click the play button.

Faster performance generally helps Web-based businesses -- Vimeo's new on-demand video-purchasing program through which people can rent or own videos, for example. Indeed, as Vimeo gradually distributed the new player to viewers, … Read more