Netflix announced Monday it is reversing its highly controversial move to create two separate companies, one for its streaming service and another for mailing DVDs. The company now says customers will be able to keep just one account and one password.
Fruit Ninja. Bejeweled. Plants vs. Zombies. These are all top-grossing apps through Apple's app store. Plenty of folks dream about creating the next mobile application smash hit. But the latest group of tech entrepreneurs — some not even old enough for a learner's permit — are going after their slice of the pie.
Guy Raz talks to Chunka Mui, who co-wrote Billion Dollar Lessons: What You Can Learn from the Most Inexcusable Business Failures of the Last 25 Years, about the successes and failures of companies that present to the public a product that changes from what people are used to. Netflix has withdrawn a plan to mail DVDs to people under a new name. Coke tried to market New Coke. What will the public accept? What won't they? And how do you know it's time to reverse course?
A funny thing about bailouts in Europe: The Germans appear to be worried sick about them, because they'll have to pay. But the French don't seem too concerned, even though they'll be paying too — and they can't afford it.
Record producer Jonathan Wilson recorded his new album Gentle Spirit during little slivers of time when the artists he was working with — among them songwriter Jackson Browne and the rock band Dawes — were on break. The project took him four years to finish, and it's the musical equivalent of a landscape painting.
Clashes between Coptic Christian protesters and the Egyptian military in Cairo on Sunday left at least 19 people dead and more than 100 wounded, according to official counts. The violence erupted after the Christians were marching to protest what they claim was an attack on a church in southern Egypt by radical Muslims.
Here's a partial list of things that happened in 1876:
It was, of course, the nation's 100th birthday. George Armstrong Custer met his fate at the Battle of Little Bighorn. Alexander Graham Bell made the first phone call. A giant squid, 18 feet long, washed up on a beach in Newfoundland.
And James Boyle's great-great-grandmother grew a very special cucumber in her Illinois garden. She put the sprouting vine in an old medicine bottle, so the cucumber grew inside it.
And not just any dessert ... the oldest dessert in New York City. No, not those rock-hard doughnuts from the corner coffee cart. We're talking about the kinds of sweets people would have been eating 500, 1,000, even 2,000 years ago.
By the late 1960s, classic horror movies pioneered by Vincent Price and Boris Karloff had run out of steam. What took their place in the period after that was something different, edgier and altogether more terrifying.
"To some extent you could say that modern horror started with the Universal classics, but I do think there is this significant turning point starting in 1968," says Jason Zinoman, author of the new book Shock Value: How a Few Eccentric Outsiders Gave Us Nightmares, Conquered Hollywood, and Invented Modern Horror.
Aman Mojedidi, who grew up in Jacksonville, Fla., moved to Afghanistan in 2003 because he thought his homeland was finally on the mend. The guerrilla artist is also known as the Jihadi Gangsta, and he has provoked controversy and laughter with his work.
The stereotypical Fantasy Football fan is a 30-something suburban man-child. And the FX program The League is about their ilk. But even though fantasy football is what brings several friends together in the TV show, you don't have to be a fantasy football fan to enjoy it.
Swedish poet Tomas Transtromer is this year's winner of the Nobel Prize in literature. Transtromer has been mentioned as a candidate for the award for years. His work often walks a line between concrete reality and dreams — he's worked as a psychologist and social worker in addition to his writing.
I went looking for a bubble the other day. I'd heard that prices for American farmland were spiking – up thirty percent over the past year, and double what people were paying five or six years ago. It sounded like irrational exuberance.
I flew to Iowa, drove to the town of Colo, an hour north of Des Moines, and dropped in on a land auction. It was a great scene: A hushed crowd of farmers, an auctioneer with a voice made for opera, and a climactic duel between rival bidders, one of whom raised the price with a wink, the other with a slight nod.
Across the world, admirers of Apple Computers are constructing impromptu shrines outside Apple Stores. Guy Raz hears from people in Santa Monica, Calif., and Washington, D.C., about what Apple means to them.
Guy Raz, talks with Alexander Nazaryan about his rant in Salon.com, excoriating the American literary world. He explains that Americans don't deserve a Nobel Prize because their work is too interior. Nazaryan is on the editorial board of The New York Daily News.
Radiohead's first hit, "Creep," was everywhere in 1993. The band could have reacted as many other modern-rock acts did in the '90s: by repeating the same old sound, album after album, before fading into the background. Instead, the group made each record a reinvention, from the spare and haunting Kid A to In Rainbows, which sounded, well, sexy. It's all helped make Radiohead one of the most inventive and important bands in the world.