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Original author: 
Jacob Kastrenakes

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Welcome to The Verge: Weekender edition. Each week, we'll bring you important articles from the previous weeks' original reports, features, and reviews on The Verge. Think of it as a collection of a few of our favorite pieces from the week gone by, which you may have missed, or which you might want to read again.

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Original author: 
Aaron Souppouris

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According to the noted psychologist Dr. Barbara Fredrickson, it takes three positive emotions to balance out a single negative. As Fast Company reports, Fredrickson's findings are at the heart of Google's Android design philosophy. When considering any user interface decision, designers working on Android have to work out how to inform users of an issue — such as reaching the final homescreen — without making them feel like they've done something wrong, meaning that means pop-ups and other invasive techniques are a no-go. For the homescreen problem, Google settled on the now-familiar glimmering animation, which subtly shows that a user has no more homescreens to swipe across to, while rewarding them with an artistic flourish.

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Original author: 
Aaron Souppouris

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When Cards Against Humanity saw its $4,000 Kickstarter campaign successfully raise almost four times its original goal, its makers were ecstatic. Two years later, the cards-based party game, which is available as a free PDF download or for $25 as a ready-made package, has generated an estimated $12 million in revenue, and in the past year alone was downloaded 1.5 million times from its website. It's also spawned a reseller culture, with frequent stock shortages leading opportunists to sell the game for as much as $100 on sites like eBay. Despite that, its makers have stayed true to their cause, and have refused several investment and merchandising offers, preferring to go it alone. A profile from Chicago Grid looks at how the game came...

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Original author: 
Adi Robertson

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To call something "propaganda" is to connote a laughably unsubtle attempt at mind control, from the kind of nasty stereotypes mocked in BioShock Infinite to a hilariously redubbed North Korean propaganda video that many thought was real — precisely because we expect such attempts to be ham-fisted and idiotic. At The Guardian, Eliane Glaser argues that we should be looking instead at how behavioral science, advertising, and even memes can nudge us in certain directions. "The notion that propaganda is always a state-run, top-down affair provides a cloak for our complicity," she writes. "Social media's veneer of openness and people-power exemplifies western propaganda's habit of masquerading as its opposite."

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Original author: 
Jeff Blagdon

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In 2002, a startup named SawStop demonstrated a table saw that could miraculously cut through wood, but stop itself dead (video below) as soon as its spinning blade touched skin. The mechanism was incredibly effective, heading off some 2,000 of the nearly 300,000 table-saw-related emergency room visits that occurred in the US since the company sold its first saw. But despite SawStop’s effectiveness, the big tool companies still haven’t added it to their products. Meanwhile, saw-related injuries result in some $2.3 billion in medical bills, lost wages, and other societal costs every year. Fair Warning investigates why the power tool industry has so far failed to license the SawStop technology or implement its own alternative. "If the...

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Original author: 
Aaron Souppouris

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The asset freeze at Mt. Gox was due to the Bitcoin exchange's failure to obey financial regulations as required by US authorities. The news comes via IDG, which obtained a copy of the seizure order from the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

The agency froze the Dwolla (a US-based online payments system) account of Mutum Sigillium (aka Mt. Gox) on the grounds that it had lied in an official form. When asked if his company "[accepts] funds from customers and send[s] the funds based on customers' instructions," Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpeles answered "no." When asked if Mt. Gox "deal[s] in or exchange[s] currency" for its customers," Karpeles again answered "no." In both cases, it seems likely — and ICE asserts — that these...

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The useless web

It's not new, it's not clever, but it is a great way to waste time. Welcome to The Useless Web, a curated collection of some of the world's most pointless websites. It's essentially a giant button that you can click to take you to one of many websites, some of which you'll know and love, and others that may be entirely new to you, but all sharing one common trait: they're useless.

We've been using the site all week long, and thought it was about time we shared some animated GIF/Flash love with you all. Check it out at the source below, and be sure to share your favorite useless site in comments.

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A large part of what makes Steven Spielberg’s movies so memorable is the visuals, with Janusz Kaminski — Oscar-winner and long-time cinematographer for the director — talking to Vulture about how he achieved some of his iconic shots. Kaminski delves into his mindset during his filming of Spielberg's movies, describing the process on titles such as Schindler’s List, Minority Report, and the recently released Lincoln. Some are helped along with CGI — like The Lost World and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull — but it’s hard not to admire Kaminski’s skill after reading through his accounts.

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Wikimedia | Star Trek LCARS UI

From the transparent touch screens of Minority Report to the LCARS operating system from Star Trek, there's no shortage of inventive user interface ideas to be found in science fiction. But for Nathan Shedroff and Christopher Noessel, these ideas are more than just a way to show off the latest special effects — they can also be a tool for those designing UIs in the present. In their book Make It So: Interaction Design Lessons from Science Fiction, the two explore what lessons designers can take from interfaces found in sci-fi movies and TV. "Could it really work that way? Should it work that way?" they ask. "And, of course, can I get the interfaces I design in my own work to be this cool or even cooler?" You can check out the book for...

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Photo

In 1981, Disney animators introduced the world to the 12 basic principles of animation. For many, the 12 rules are held in the same esteem as Dieter Rams' ten principles of good design, and are seen as something of a bible to would-be animators. In a chapter in her book, The Mobile Frontier, Rachel Hinman looks at how the Disney principles can also be applied to mobile UI and game design, pulling in examples from Apple, Microsoft, Google, Palm, and more. Hinman believes that motion is all-important in mobile design, and highlights how transitive animations and other techniques can help bring a little "magic" into a mobile user experience. The full chapter has been published online by Smashing Magazine, while the book itself is available...

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