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Mashable is a leading source for news, information & resources for the Connected Generation. Mashable reports on the importance of digital innovation and how it empowers and inspires people around the world. Mashable's 25 million monthly unique visitors and 10 million social media followers have become one of the most engaged online news communities. Founded in 2005, Mashable is headquartered in New York City with an office in San Francisco.
Updated: 1 hour 28 min ago

Bill Gates promises $1.7 billion to U.S. public schools over next 5 years

1 hour 48 min ago

Billionaire Bill Gates is investing big time in public education.

At the Council of the Great City Schools conference in Cleveland Thursday, Gates announced a hefty $1.7 billion investment from his foundation.

Midway through his keynote address (the video of his speech is embedded above and starts around the 19-minute mark) he vowed to improve public education with a focus on low-income students and students of color. 

Over the next five years, Gates said the investment would mostly go toward developing new curricula and building "networks of schools." He's hoping data-driven systems will help students, teachers, and districts learn what's working and what's not. He cited successful programs already implemented at schools that helped students discover college options and English language learners catch up to their peers. Read more...

More about Education, Social Good, Bill Gates, Philanthropy, and Bill And Melinda Gates Foundation

Nivea's controversial skin-lightening ad puts spotlight on the history of white supremacy

1 hour 49 min ago

The skincare company Nivea makes dozens of products for women and men around the world. 

But what you probably didn't know until earlier this week is that Nivea also sells skin-lightening cream to consumers in Africa.

SEE ALSO: Oh look, another insensitive, wannabe 'woke' ad campaign.

While it's not the only company to market such products — L'Oréal and Pond's have their own whitening lines — a Nivea ad for a skin-lightening lotion called "Natural Fairness" went viral this week after black London-based entrepreneur William Adoasi shared it on Twitter.

The ad aired in Ghana as a product that "visibly lightens" skin color. It's the latest bit of beauty marketing called out for racist themes or messages. A few weeks ago, Dove published a GIF on Facebook that featured a black woman removing her top over her head to reveal a white woman. The company dropped the ad and apologized. Earlier this year, Nivea was criticized for a Facebook ad geo-targeted to Middle East users with the slogan "white is purity."  Read more...

More about Health, Gender, Beauty, Social Good, and Racism

Get job hunting tips with an online course called 'Skills to Pay the Bills'

1 hour 52 min ago

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.

We know, being an adult is hard — especially when it comes to interviewing for jobs. This online course is about to be your career's saving grace.

SEE ALSO: Become a master of professional social encounters in 5.5 hours

Skills to Pay the Bills (yes, it's actually called that) is a 30-minute video course on all things related to finding a job. Starting off with the five steps to employment, the course takes you through resume building 101, time management tips, and the much-needed interview skills.  Read more...

More about Business, College, Interview, Career Advice, and Resume Tips

The slip 'n' slide of solar panels are easier to transport and may save lives

1 hour 57 min ago

Renovagen is a company based out of the UK that specializes in solar energy. They have created a new system of solar panels that is portable and easy to use called 'Rapid Roll'. The panels are easy to roll out of a truck or trailer. The island, Flat Holm in Great Britain, is currently being powered by these roll-out panels. The goal of the company is to be able to make Rapid Roll accessible to areas in need of power quickly, specifically those damaged by a natural disaster. Read more...

More about Technology, Mashable Video, Solar Energy, England, and Great Britain

Bitcoin hits another milestone as it climbs past $6,000

1 hour 59 min ago

If you own Bitcoin, October has been good to you.

The value of one bitcoin climbed over $6,000 for the first time on Friday less than two weeks after it pushed past $5,000.

SEE ALSO: Bitcoin broke through $5,000—but there are major risks ahead

Bitcoin reached as high as $6,063 on Friday, according to the research site CoinDesk, and was valued at around $6,034 at the time of this writing. 

The highest-valued cryotpcurrency on the planet wasn't a thing 10 years ago, but the continued rise of its value shows that perhaps the greater world should start paying attention sooner rather than later. 

It's unclear why Bitcoin has risen at this rate in October. Observers have thrown out a few guesses, including that perhaps a shortage of physical money in Zimbabwe is driving up Bitcoin's value.  Read more...

More about Business, Business, and Other

Practice your skateboard tricks without falling on your butt

2 hours 7 min ago

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.

The SkaterTrainer 2.0 will help you learn how to skate way better than all those hours of Tony Hawk: Pro Skater 2 ever will.

These rubber stoppers slip right over your skateboard wheels and stop it from moving. Now when you try out tricks and stunts, your skateboard won't betray you by rolling away when you launch off of it trying to look coolSkaterTrainer 2.0 makes it easier to practice your tricks any time, anywhere until you're shredding like a pro.

Get started on your SkaterTrainer 2.0 experience for $24. Read more...

More about Skateboarding, Shopping Amazon, Shopping Fun, Shopping Solo, and Skatertrainer 2.0

If Jeff Bezos really wanted to rule the world, he'd pose for corny photos like he used to

2 hours 10 min ago

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos might be jacked and powerful now, but his photo shoot panache has really taken a nosedive.

In the early years of Amazon (the mid-to-late '90s, when all style was perfect), Bezos seemed to have a penchant for corny, delightful photo opps. Jeff Bezos with a Pikachu and a drill, Jeff Bezos beside an insanely tall stack of books: these were the looks the CEO of Amazon.com favored.

SEE ALSO: Here are a bunch of photos of Jared Kushner just staring blankly into the middle distance

Now, Jeff Bezos is boring. In the most recent photos of him on Getty, he's either sitting near Donald Trump or wearing a gray vest, both of which are bad situations to be in! We bet he doesn't even mention Pikachu anymore.  Read more...

More about Amazon, Jeff Bezos, Culture, and Big Tech Companies

Everyone who's not OK right now should play 'Everything is going to be OK'

2 hours 12 min ago

Listen, everything is absolutely not OK right now.

The short list of not-OK things just happening in the news lately, for instance, includes the pervasive culture of sexual assault that rots our society and is finally coming to bear. Or that our earth appears in revolt of our human destructiveness, as more and more people die every week because of it. Health care, too, in America was knowingly sabotaged by our president, making it harder than ever for sick, lower income people to get help.

And on top of everything, my dog keeps having nightmares where he makes those really distressing whimpering sounds.  Read more...

More about Politics, Social Good, Sexual Harassment, Sexism, and Web Culture

There's a sexy fidget spinner costume because 2017 is trash

2 hours 20 min ago

Every year, the internet is flooded with needlessly sexy Halloween costumes. But we just may have found the worst offender — for 2017, at least.

Image: dolls kill

Cashing in on the last bit of leg the trend has, Dolls Kill has released a sexy fidget spinner costume, because Halloween is meant to be scary? The costume features remnants of a silver leotard, with cutouts in the mid-drift and back. Then there are two cheap plastic things that sort of resemble a fidget spinner placed over each breast. 

SEE ALSO: Astronauts got to play with fidget spinners in space

Image: dolls kill

"Dolls Kill Fidget Me Spinner Costume cuz they can’t put ya down. This addicting costume includes a silver cut-out bodysuit with black spinners over your girlz. Complete your look with some black thigh-high boots and they won’t be able to get enough of ya!" the description reads. Read more...

More about Halloween, Costumes, Wtf, Fidget Spinner, and Culture

7 haunted houses across America you should definitely visit this Halloween

2 hours 22 min ago

There's nothing more fun, or more terrifying, than running down a dark hallway with a menacing clown hot on your tail. 

It's officially the Halloween season and possibly the only time of the year when you're brave enough to come face-to-face with a little (totally safe) terror.

SEE ALSO: Halloween decorations are way freakier when you project them on your window

We're talking, of course, about haunted houses.

If you don't mind a few bumps in the night, here's a list of some of the scariest haunted house attractions in America you should definitely visit this year. Read more...

1. Netherworld, Norcross, Georgia More about Watercooler, Halloween, Culture, Culture, and Science Fiction

Look up this weekend to see little bits of Halley's Comet falling to Earth

2 hours 27 min ago

This weekend, look up at night to see bits of Halley's Comet falling through Earth's atmosphere. 

The Orionid meteor shower is set to peak in the overnight hours through the weekend, according to Sky & Telescope, and if you're in a dark part of the world, you should have a pretty good shot at seeing at least a few of the shooting stars. 

SEE ALSO: The butt of every space joke is high in the sky this week

The Orionids aren't usually an incredible annual meteor shower, but this year's could be pretty special thanks to the fact that there will be no moonlight to blot out the streaking meteors.

"Look near Orion's club in the hours before dawn and you may see up to 10 to 15 meteors per hour," NASA said in a skywatching video. Read more...

More about Space, Nasa, Science, Orion, and Meteor Showers

Uber now wants some drivers to pay it money—and there's no guarantee they'll benefit

2 hours 53 min ago

Pay now in order to potentially earn more later. It may sound like something straight out of a marketing scheme, but it's in fact the latest promise from Uber to a subset of its drivers.

However, according to the ride-hail giant, this is not the latest revenue play from a company losing hundreds of millions of dollars a quarter, but rather part of an academic study with the goal of determining what value its drivers place on that gig economy-defining buzzword known as "flexibility." 

SEE ALSO: iOS 11 finally forces Uber off your tail

The promotion was picked up by Alex Rosenblat, a researcher at Data&Society, who detailed the specifics in a Medium post. The offer, sent to drivers in the Houston area, promises the chance to bump up earnings by 33 percent — with, of course, a catch or two thrown in.  Read more...

More about Uber, Ride Hailing, Ride Hailing Apps, Gig Economy, and Tech

Trump gets a 10 on Puerto Rico response from San Juan mayor — but on a very different scale

3 hours 23 min ago

San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz finally agrees with President Donald Trump on something: the U.S. government's response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico was a 10.

Only for the mayor it's out of 100 — a failing grade, compared to Trump's perfect 10 out of 10 that he gave himself at a White House meeting with the Puerto Rico governor Thursday.

SEE ALSO: Mayor of San Juan tells Trump that he is leaving Puerto Rico to die

"I think the president lives in an alternative reality world that only he believes the things that he is saying," Cruz said about her "grade" for Trump.

Cruz spoke to CNN on the one-month anniversary of the deadly hurricane blowing through the island nation. Read more...

More about Donald Trump, Disaster Relief, Puerto Rico, Disaster Recovery, and Fema

Watch a biker stop traffic to save a teeny kitten

3 hours 31 min ago

A motorcyclist driving on a freeway in Bangkok, Thailand, noticed the teeniest baby kitten in the middle of the road recently, so naturally, he stopped.

The man managed to stop one lane of the busy highway, and was forced to ask a car to reverse a few inches so that he could retrieve the poor little cat.

The cat was terrified, but looked relatively uninjured from the incident.  Read more...

More about Watercooler, Animals, Dashcam, Culture, and Animals

If you're hoping for an iPhone X at launch, get ready to wait

3 hours 35 min ago

Read more...

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Trump thinks he's the proud owner of an original Renoir painting. This art institute says otherwise.

3 hours 43 min ago

As if fake Melania wasn't enough, we learned from Trump biographer Tim O'Brien this week that the president's "original Renoir" painting may not even be the real deal.

O'Brien told Vanity Fair's Inside the Hive podcast that he first pressed the Donald on the authenticity of the painting years ago while flying on his decked-out private jet.

SEE ALSO: Stephen Colbert showed us Trump's IQ result and it's absolutely brutal

When Trump assured O'Brien that the painting was real, the biographer was skeptical.

"Donald, it's not," he said, according to Vanity Fair. "I grew up in Chicago. That Renoir is called Two Sisters on the Terrace, and it's hanging on the wall at the Art Institute of Chicago. That's not an original." O'Brien said Trump brought up the "original painting" again the next day as they boarded the jet again to return to New York.  Read more...

More about Art, Trump, Fake, Alternative Facts, and Renoir

How I broke Instagram Stories

3 hours 56 min ago

Hi, my name is Ray Wong and I have a very, very serious Instagram Stories addiction. There, I said it. Don't judge me.

But I'm not your usual junkie. I posted so much on my IG Stories during my recent vacation in Japan that I broke it (well, sort of). And boy, was I pissed.

SEE ALSO: Why the iPhone 8 Plus is a better camera than a real camera

I had this crazy idea of my very first trip to Japan being free of social media. I wanted to visit the Land of the Rising Sun with fresh eyes, free of the pressure to post anything and really disconnect from this perverse "pics or it didn't happen" culture we now live in. Read more...

More about Instagram, Tech, and Social Media Companies

Russian photo studio lets you snap photos on a private jet for the Instagram likes

4 hours 12 min ago

The cruelest part of social media (aside from all the actually bad stuff) is not that it's brought us squiggle brows or existential crises, but that it has introduced us to the private jet plandid.

Which is how we've ended up here: faking private jet photos for those sweet, sweet Instagram likes.

SEE ALSO: The truth about detoxes and cleanses

According to The Telegraph, Private Jet Studio – a Russian photo studio – offers people the chance to simulate a life of luxury via a grounded private plane, in which people can pay to pose for photos.

The concept is simple: per the company website, the studio consists of a Gulfstream G650 grounded in Moscow that's available for rent – either for 2 hours of photo (for about $243) or video (for about $434), or for full day or overnight rentals. They'll even do your hair!  Read more...

More about Culture, Web Culture, Culture, Innovations, and Web Culture

The Weather Channel wants you to know there's a more pressing issue than the weather right now

4 hours 18 min ago

The Weather Channel has a message for Americans: Puerto Rico is still in crisis. 

The popular website of the IBM-owned company on Friday used its entire front page to remind visitors that the situation in Puerto Rico remains dire, exactly one month after Category 4 Hurricane Maria struck the island. Millions of residents remain without power, and many still lack access to clean water. 

"AMERICA, THIS IS STILL HAPPENING," declares the website's top headline. All the stories on the front page featured stories on the island. The organization also did the same on its mobile app.

Image: Weather.com screenshot Read more...

More about Science, Puerto Rico, The Weather Channel, Hurricane Maria, and Business

An aquarium filled with bioluminescent plankton is the perfect gift

4 hours 19 min ago

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.

Throw your sea monkeys in the garbage. There's a new tiny pet in town — and this one glows. 

This fish bowl is filled with thousands of bioluminescent plankton called dinoflaggelates that glow blue when gently shaken. It looks like magic, but it's actually science. 

Bioluminescence is what causes lightning bugs and jellyfish to glow. The same dinoflagellates that light up this aquarium treated the shores of Tasmania to an underwater light show earlier this year. With the bioluminescent aquarium you can have your own light show in the comfort of your own home.  Read more...

More about Bioluminescence, Shopping Skimlinks, Shopping Fun, Shopping Solo, and Shopping Premium

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