The Weekly Hash - February 15, 2013

From the College of Cardinals’ new high tech method for choosing a pope to Google’s new private airport to the president’s geeky Fireside Chat we make fun of some of the this week’s top tech stories

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Has the pope updated his LinkedIn profile yet?

Image credit: ITworld/Phil Johnson

Happy Friday! Hopefully everybody survived Valentine’s Day, the pope resigning and that meteor exploding over Russia in one piece. What a week.

Per usual, here are ten of the top tech stories of the past seven days. Well, OK, nine plus the pope resigning; I know that’s not really a tech story, but it’s left me with some tech-related questions, like, does the Vatican support BYOD? Does he have to get a new non-pope email address? Or a new Twitter handle? These are the questions keeping me up night.

[Videos flood YouTube after Russian meteor strike and Vatican unveils Pope's Twitter account]

Anyway, on with the topical humor...

Pope Benedict XVI announced on Monday that he was resigning at the end of the month. The College of Cardinals has modernized the process of picking a new pope: instead of paper ballots they’ll use Survey Monkey.

Google is building its own airport. Passengers won’t be required to go through the normal airport security, but, just for fun, full-body pat-downs will still be offered.

President Obama hosted a Google+ hangout on Thursday, which he called a Fireside Hangout. It was just like FDR’s Fireside Chats, only a lot geekier.

New research by Indiana University finds that artificial intelligence can do a better job than doctors at treating patients. The way it works is, the computer comes up with the proper treatment after simulating thousands of rounds of golf.

iFixit gave Microsoft’s Surface Pro a score of 1 out of 10 on their repairability scale. They said the only thing harder to fix than a Surface Pro would be Microsoft’s business plan.

Java was the most popular programming language in January, surpassing the previous month’s top language, C. Java not only become more popular than C, Java stole C’s girlfriend.

American Express announced this week that cardholders will now be able to make purchases by tweeting. Here’s how it works: you’ll need to be an American Express cardholder, you’ll need to sync your card with your Twitter account and you’ll need to be extremely lazy.

Starting this week Facebook users can now pay to promote posts made by their friends. The good news is it’s free to unfriend those people who do.

Microsoft announced this week that they would only support the Surface Pro until 2017, a much shorter length of time than normal. Microsoft did offer that, for anybody still using a Surface Pro by then, they would pay for those customers to get their heads' examined.

Apple is reportedly experimenting with a watch-like device with smartphone capabilities. They decided that a watch would be more appealing than their first idea for smart wearable technology, the smart-thong.

Enjoy the Presidents Day weekend!

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