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Smash Bros. Ultimate adds fan faves Simon Belmont, King K Rool, tons more
If you thought Nintendo's upcoming mascot-battler game couldn't get any bigger, its creators had a Konami-tinged surprise on Wednesday: 's Simon Belmont as a brand-new playable Smash fighter. Belmont was arguably the biggest announcement to come in the latest news-filled Nintendo Direct video series. Director Masahiro Sakurai confirmed that the character's classic whip gives him the longest standard melee attack…

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Amazon launches grocery pickup at Whole Foods for Prime members
A new perk is coming to Whole Foods for Amazon Prime members: grocery pickup. Amazon announced today that it will roll out a new grocery pickup service at Whole Foods locations, starting with stores in Sacramento and Virginia Beach. Prime members can order groceries at Whole Foods through the Prime Now app or website and choose to pick them up…

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Love of patterns, order may explain mad math skills—and autism link
During family dinner, we have a tradition. Everyone has to summarize their day by describing three good events and, if necessary, one bad event. When my turn arrived at a recent dinner, I turned to my two eldest children and told them that my bad event was discovering that their math grades should have been higher.

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Researchers insert a spider web gene into the silkworm
Spider silk is a bit of a dream material, stronger than steel by some measures yet incredibly light and flexible. Obtaining spider silk, however, is a bit of a nightmare, as most spider species are both extremely territorial and prone to cannibalism. While we have managed to identify the genes that are needed to produce silk, inserting those into other…

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After years of hype, Magic Leaps starts selling $2,300 AR headset
After years of behind-closed-doors demos and over-the-top hype, Magic Leap's augmented reality glasses took one more step towards reality today. The company has opened up orders for the $2,295 "Creator Edition" of its first headset, the Magic Leap One. That price includes in-person delivery and setup of the developer-focused hardware, though that delivery is only available in select US cities…

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Recuperating power: Charging a prototype Audi e-tron with kinetic energy
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.—Last week, Audi invited a handful of journalists to go for a drive down Pike's Peak, one of Colorado's many mountain tops that rise more than 14,000 feet above sea level. We rose before dawn and shuttled up the mountain to a frigid July sunrise overlooking the world. Waiting for us at the top were four all-electric prototype…

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NASA doesn’t have the funds to get to Mars alone, Ted Cruz says
On Friday, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) spent the morning at Houston's Johnson Space Center for a ceremony announcing the nine astronauts who will fly aboard NASA's first commercial crew missions. During the visit, Cruz burnished his space credentials, noting that nearly full funding for the commercial crew program by Congress coincided with his selection as chairman of the Senate committee…

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Employee email explains Elon Musk’s plan to take Tesla private
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has sent out an email to employees explaining his plan—first disclosed in a cryptic tweet—to turn Tesla into a privately held company. "As a public company, we are subject to wild swings in our stock price that can be a major distraction for everyone working at Tesla," Musk wrote.

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Charging down a mountain: How Audi’s recuperation system drives its electric SUV
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.—Last week, Audi invited a handful of journalists to go for a drive down Pike's Peak, one of Colorado's many mountain tops that rise more than 14,000 feet above sea level. We rose before dawn and shuttled up the mountain to a frigid July sunrise overlooking the world. Waiting for us at the top were four all-electric prototype…