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A Ping Pong Robot & a Mirror that Really Doesn't Lie, Unveiled in Japan

A ping pong playing robot, a flying origami bird and a mirror that some might find a little too honest for comfort were on display at a huge tech show in Japan on Wednesday.

The gadgets are all part of this year's Cutting-edge IT & Electronics Comprehensive Exhibition (CEATEC), Asia's largest electronics fair, outside Tokyo.

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EU Court Strikes Down Transatlantic Data Deal in Facebook Case

The EU's top court on Tuesday ruled that a key transatlantic data deal relied on by companies such as Facebook was invalid in the light of spying revelations in the Edward Snowden scandal.

"The Court of Justice declares that the (European) Commission’s U.S. Safe Harbour Decision is invalid," it said in a decision on a case brought against Facebook by Austrian law student Max Schrems.

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Facebook, Eutelsat in African Internet Satellite Hook-Up

European satellite operator Eutelsat Communications and social media giant Facebook said Monday they are working jointly to deliver satellite broadband Internet to connectivity-hungry sub-Saharan Africa.

The firms revealed they have reached a multi-year agreement with satellite communication firm Spacecom to use the entire broadband payload of the AMOS-6 satellite due to come on stream in the second half of next year and provide coverage for large swathes of sub-Saharan Africa, after identifying "pent-up demand for connectivity".

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People-Rating App Sparks Firestorm

Creators of an app that will let people assign ratings to those they know vowed to launch as planned next month as planned despite online outrage at the idea.

Peeple has been likened by critics and supporters alike as a Yelp-style review service at which people are rated, without their consent, the same way a person might give a grade to a restaurant or an airline.

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German Wind Power Output Topping 2014 Total

Germany's wind power generation by September surpassed last year's total, thanks to favorable weather conditions and an expansion of wind farms, industry bodies said Thursday.

The cumulative total production from land-based and offshore wind farms so far this year was 59 billion kilowatt hours, topping the 57.4 billion kWh for all of 2014.

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Uber Campaigns against Tough Rules Proposed in London

Ride-sharing giant Uber launched a petition that had more than 116,000 signatures by Thursday against proposed regulation in London that would force drivers to pass English language and map reading tests.

"We understand that black cab drivers are feeling the pressure from services like Uber," the company's British branch said on its website.

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Microsoft and Google Call Truce in Patent Wars

Technology titans Microsoft and Google on Wednesday announced that they have agreed to end all patent infringement litigation against each other.

Legal battles between the companies included suits over technology for Internet-linked mobile devices, WiFi and digital video.

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New TiVo DVR Will Skip through Entire Commercial Break

TiVo wants to help you skip TV commercials.

With one press of a button on the remote, TiVo's new digital video recorder will skip the entire commercial break. That's quicker than the 30-second forward feature found on previous TiVos. On the new TiVo Bolt, TiVo will tag the start and end of commercial breaks so that viewers can skip that section when watching on their recordings. The feature will work with about 20 over-the-air and cable channels, including the major broadcast networks, mostly during prime-time hours.

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Golden Oldies: Retro Videogame Fans Flock to Tokyo

Tossed aside as outdated junk by some, old videogames such as Donkey Kong and Pac-Man are now getting a new lease of life in Tokyo's vibrant Akihabara district, as growing numbers of die-hard fans seek out vintage classics to relive their youth.

Inside Super Potato, a famed retro videogame store, devotees browse isles packed with everything from Legend of Zelda figurines to immaculately packaged old Sega Mega Drives, while Super Mario toys dangle from the ceiling overhead.

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Yahoo to Spin off Alibaba Stake Despite Tax Question

Yahoo notified U.S. regulators that it is proceeding with plans to spin off its multi-billion-dollar stake in Alibaba despite the unanswered question of what the tax bill could be.

Yahoo's board of directors has authorized the company to pursue the transaction "as previously disclosed, except that the completion of the spin-off will not be conditioned upon receipt of a favorable ruling from the IRS," the company said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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