YouTube Singer Peter Hollens Earns Record Deal From Sony Music



A capella singer Peter Hollens, who has premiered music videos on Mashable, has snagged a wicked record deal just days after unleashing a medley from the Wicked musical

Sony Music announced Thursday that its classical and crossover label Sony Music Masterworks inked a deal with Hollens, who will release his debut album on Oct. 28

“We’ve been in talks for a few months, but nothing was set in stone until just recently,” Hollens, 32, told Mashable. “Honestly, with a 4-month-old, and a full-time job, I’ve had so little time to celebrate. I really need to find time to do that.” Read more…

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Smoke in the Air, Blood in the Streets: Gaza Before the Cease-Fire



U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry have announced that Israel and Hamas have agreed to a 72-hour humanitarian cease-fire in Gaza.

The cease-fire is scheduled to begin at 8 a.m. local time on Friday and continue through the weekend. Its stated goal is to allow Gazans a momentary reprieve to obtain urgently needed humanitarian relief, the parties said in a joint statement.

This cease-fire is critical to giving innocent civilians a much-needed reprieve from violence. During this period, civilians in Gaza will receive urgently needed humanitarian relief, and the opportunity to carry out vital functions, including burying the dead, taking care of the injured, and restocking food supplies. Overdue repairs on essential water and energy infrastructure could also continue during this period. Read more…

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Proud Dad Jack Vale’s iPhone Video of Daughter Singing Goes Viral



Like any proud parent, comedian Jack Vale is instinctively inclined to photograph his daughter’s every impressive moment. So in mid-July, the YouTube prankster whipped out his iPhone camera and captured 12-year old Madysyn Rose singing Naughty Boy and Sam Smith’s hit song “La La La.”

Now the video has reached a massive 17.5 million Facebook News Feeds since July 18.

“It’s very exciting, overwhelming and amazing,” Madysyn told Mashable. “Singing is what I want to do for the rest of my life, and knowing that millions of people have heard me sing is awesome. It encourages me to keep doing what I love.” Read more…

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Series of Gas Explosions Kill 15, Injure 228 in Taiwan



At least 15 people are dead and 228 injured following a series of gas explosions on the streets of a southern Taiwanese city late Thursday night.

Locals had reported gas leaks in the city of Kaohsiung beginning around 9 p.m. local time, Focus Taiwan reported on its Facebook page, and explosions followed three hours later. Some witnesses had reported seeing a “white fog” in the area, while another thought the mysterious substance was “poisonous gas.”

A driver’s dashcam video apparently captured the sudden blasts, which caught nighttime commuters off guard as they were traveling the city’s streets. As the driver behind the camera navigates the city, spouts of flame pop up through the sewage vents as explosions are heard in the distance. Read more…

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San Francisco Airport Testing Beacons to Guide Blind Travelers



San Francisco International Airport is rolling out a pilot program later this year that could help blind travelers navigate within a terminal with the guidance of beacon technology

Tiny sensors called beacons will be tested in one of the airport’s newest terminals (Terminal 2, home to American Airlines and Virgin Atlantic Airlines) and potentially expand to other terminals in the future. The initiative is expected to launch this fall

Public areas are introducing beacons to buildings as a way to bring indoor mapping and real-time interactive navigation to the mainstreamAlthough GPS is reliable for routing you to target destinations, the same can’t be said for the great indoors. Read more…

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Facebook Updates Slingshot With Unlimited Reactions



Facebook’s photo messaging app Slingshot was updated Thursday with new features for the first time since it launched last month

Users can now react to reaction messages — somewhat of a departure from Slingshot’s signature “shot-for-shot” dynamic.

Previously, a single reaction was the only way users could view a message without having to send one of their own first. While this still applies to regular messages (users are still required to “unlock” new slings with replies), users can now exchange an unlimited number of reaction messages. Read more…

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6 Mistakes Many Marketers Make Daily



It used to be that “multi-channel marketing” meant ensuring that your print, TV and radio ads looked and sounded the same. Now, consumers have more channels than ever to interact with your brand, so creating an integrated marketing experience means getting everything right, from social to search, automation to analytics, and lead nurturing to LinkedIn

Simply put, you can no longer afford to focus on one element of your marketing and put the rest out to pasture. Your prospects, customers and leads expect a fully integrated experience with your brand, and if your company doesn’t provide one, your competitors will. Below are six mistakes most marketers make daily, and some suggestions on how to address them. Read more…

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Report: Drone Industry Could Soar to $11 Billion by 2024



Love them or hate them, drones are here to stay — at least for the foreseeable future. A new report detailing the growth of the drone industry finds that over the next 10 years, the amount of money spent annually on drones and their accompanying technologies will likely double worldwide.

An estimated $6.4 billion is currently being spent each year on developing drone technology around the world, according to a report published earlier this month by the Teal Group Corp., an aerospace and defense market research firm headquartered in Fairfax, Virginia. That number is expected to nearly double in future years, bringing the total amount spent on drones for both military and commercial applications to $11.5 billion annually by 2024. Read more…

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‘Game of Thrones’ Actress Had the Best Reaction to Being Recast



Anyone in the market for a Princess?

Former Game of Thrones actress, Aimee Richardson, who played Myrcella Baratheon, has been recast for season 5 of the hit HBO show. But Richardson dealt with the blow the best way possible — a little social media humor.

(We would’ve set our dragons on HBO, but this works too.)

Fans of the series will remember Myrcella as the second child of Cersei (and Jamie) Lannister, who was shipped off to Dorne to be betrothed to Trystane Martell. While Myrcella’s character has a large role in the upcoming fifth season of GoT, Richardson has been replaced by actress Nell Tiger Free Read more…

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Apple Confirms it Will Lay Off 200 Beats Employees



Apple confirmed Thursday that it will gradually lay off 200 Beats employees, or nearly 29% of the 700 people currently working for the headphones company.

The news comes as Apple’s acquisition of Beats becomes official. While 700 Beats employees will begin working at Apple after the deal closes, only 500 of them will keep their jobs longer than a few months, according to told the Wall Street Journal.

Apple released a statement to 9to5Mac to address earlier rumors of layoffs.

“We’re excited to have the Beats team join Apple, and we have extended job offers to every Beats employee,” the statement read. “Because of some overlap in our operations, some offers are for a limited period and we’ll work hard during this time to find as many of these Beats employees as we can another permanent job within Apple.” Read more…

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