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California motorist cleared on technicality in Google Glass case PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by JULIE WATSON, Associated Press Writer   
Friday, 17 January 2014 07:06

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A San Diego traffic court threw out a citation Thursday against a woman believed to be the first motorist in the country ticketed for driving while wearing a Google Glass computer-in-eyeglass device.

Commissioner John Blair ruled that Cecilia Abadie was not guilty because she had been cited under a code that requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the device was in operation, which the officer did not provide.

However, Blair did find that the language of the code specifically bars the operation of a video or TV screen or similar device on the front of a vehicle while it is moving — a provision that Blair said could be broad enough to apply to Google Glass.

The device in a kind of glass-wear frame features a thumbnail-size transparent display above the right eye.

Abadie said she was happy she won her case but hoped the court would have ruled that Google Glass is legal to wear while driving whether activated or not.

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Airfares continue to rise, up 12 percent since '09 PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by SCOTT MAYEROWITZ, AP Airlines Writer   
Thursday, 16 January 2014 15:27

NEW YORK (AP) — The price of flying continues to climb, with the average domestic roundtrip ticket, including tax, reaching $363.42 last year, up more than $7 from the prior year.

The 2 percent increase outpaced inflation, which stood at 1.5 percent for the year, and represents the fourth consecutive year fliers have faced price hikes.

Airfares have risen nearly 12 percent since the recessionary low in 2009, when adjusted for inflation, according to an Associated Press analysis of fare data from the Airlines Reporting Corp., which processes ticket transactions for airlines and more than 9,400 travel agencies, including websites such as Expedia and Orbitz.

The price of flying has gone up as airlines have cut unprofitable routes, packed more passengers into planes and have merged with one another, providing travelers with fewer options.

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Google contact lens could be option for diabetics PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by MARTHA MENDOZA, AP National Writer   
Friday, 17 January 2014 06:58

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (AP) — Brian Otis gingerly holds what looks like a typical contact lens on his index finger. Look closer. Sandwiched in this lens are two twinkling glitter-specks loaded with tens of thousands of miniaturized transistors. It's ringed with a hair-thin antenna. Together these remarkable miniature electronics can monitor glucose levels in tears of diabetics and then wirelessly transmit them to a handheld device.

"It doesn't look like much, but it was a crazy amount of work to get everything so very small," he said before the project was unveiled Thursday.

During years of soldering hair-thin wires to miniaturize electronics, Otis burned his fingertips so often that he can no longer feel the tiny chips he made from scratch in Google's Silicon Valley headquarters, a small price to pay for what he says is the smallest wireless glucose sensor ever made.

Just 35 miles away in the beach town of Santa Cruz, high school soccer coach and university senior Michael Vahradian, 21, has his own set of fingertip callouses, his from pricking himself up to 10 times a day for the past 17 years to draw blood for his glucose meter. A cellphone-sized pump on his hip that attaches to a flexible tube implanted in his stomach shoots rapid-acting insulin into his body around the clock.

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Boehner: House won't repeal flood insurance hikes PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by ANDREW TAYLOR, Associated Press   
Thursday, 16 January 2014 14:24

WASHINGTON (AP) — Speaker John Boehner says the GOP-controlled House won't take up legislation aimed at neutering a 2012 overhaul of the federal flood insurance program that is hitting homeowners who have long paid below-market rates with big premium hikes.

The Ohio Republican said "we're not going to do that" when the topic was broached in a hallway exchange with The Associated Press in the Capitol complex.

The bipartisan 2012 overhaul of the much-criticized flood insurance program is requiring owners of vacation homes, frequently-flooded properties, and businesses to lose their subsidized rates over time. Other homeowners can keep their subsidies but can't pass them on when selling their houses, which has caused a disruption in home sales.

The Senate will shortly take up legislation to delay major elements of the 2012 law.


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