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GeekWire is an independent technology news site and online community based in Seattle, Wash. — covering the people, companies and innovations emerging from the Pacific Northwest and impacting the world. Founders John Cook and Todd Bishop bring their popular website to radio life weekends on KIRO Radio.

Latest news from GeekWire

Facebook’s anonymous Rooms app gives users a new way to explore

Rooms, the iPhone app from Facebook that lets users of the social network chat anonymously with other people who share their interests, received a new update today that makes it easier for people to find chatrooms they’re interested in. The new “Explore” tab gives users recommendations of a few select rooms they might like to check out, along with a short description of what they’re used for. It’s a move that should help attract new users to the service. Prior to this addition, users could pick out rooms from a set of suggestions laid out in the app when they signed up, … Read More on GeekWire

This couple got married after their anonymous avatars met in an app

Steve and Megan_7
It started with an “anonymous” match on Anomo, and ended with a wedding in Vegas. Megan and Steve tied the knot this past Saturday, becoming the first Anomo users to meet through the app and eventually exchange vows ? a smartphone-enabled love story, if you will. Anomo is an app developed in Seattle that uses anonymous profiles and icebreaker questions to help people meet one another. The service classifies users into subgroups based on icebreaker questions like, ?Are you a Republican or Democrat?? or, “Do you worry a lot?” Then, the app?s measures each user?s chat compatibility and matches people based on an algorithm. Based … Read More on GeekWire

Pets need gadgets, too: Amazon’s launches geek gifts for Fido

Photo via Pet Tech Shop
If you’re someone who stops over at the pet store at least once a week, walking out with an armful of unnecessary toys and treats for your favorite little dog or cat, this site is probably for you., owned by Amazon-owned Quidsi, just launched its Pet Tech Shop, which is chock-a-block full of cool gadgets and gear for your pet. Remote Treat Dispensers! Smart pet doors! And the PetSafe Train N Praise Potty Training System, which gives your pet a treat every time they use the pee pad! Lord, I wish I had this about six months ago. The site reports … Read More on GeekWire

Seahawks, Super Bowl and composting: Seattle’s top Google trends for 2014

Photo via Flickr/Ron Sombilon
Yesterday, we told you about Google’s national trends on search. But today, they gave us the lowdown on Seattlelites’ favorite searches. And, well, the results are so Seattle. Not surprisingly, our super year with the Seahawks’ Super Bowl victory dominated a few of the charts. And we love our soccer, er, football. The World Cup also topped some lists. Perhaps most hilarious is our most googled “how-to question?” How to compost. Below, the top 10 trending searches for Seattle, courtesy of Google: World Cup Robin Williams Super Bowl 2014 Ebola Philip Seymour Hoffman Malaysia Airlines Joan Rivers Jennifer Lawrence Easter … Read More on GeekWire

Sony cancels theatrical release of ‘The Interview’ after big movie chains back out

Photo via
Sony has canceled the scheduled Dec. 25 release of “The Interview” following a decision by five major movie chains not to show the film due to terrorist threats. The studio said in a statement, “We are deeply saddened at this brazen effort to suppress the distribution of a movie, and in the process do damage to our company, our employees, and the American public. We stand by our filmmakers and their right to free expression and are extremely disappointed by this outcome.” The hackers, still unknown but rumored to be associated with North Korea, which is very upset over how Dear … Read More on GeekWire

These $151 jeans feature RFID-blocking signals to ward off high-tech pickpockets

Photo via Betabrand
San Francisco-based Betabrand, home to the fashion wonder that is known as the 5-Pocket Dress Pant Sweatpants (Seriously, has anyone bought these? I would like to know.) is now bringing us READY Jeans Protected by Norton for a mere $151 (on sale). The jeans feature two RFID-blocking pockets to stop scanning devices from pulling your credit card info (Here’s a travel tip: pickpockets are going to steal anything you keep in your back pocket no matter what, so really, not a good move to store anything there.). They’re made from “subtly stretchy denim” and have “gusseted crotch for better range of … Read More on GeekWire

Uber doubles down on safety, hires Amazon Europe vet to handle customer service

Uber announced today that the company has been conducting a review of its safety policies over the past month, and plans to roll out a number of changes to improve the safety of the driving service. As a part of that review, the company said that it plans to roll out new technology to improve the safety of its customers. Uber’s Safety Product Team is in the process of conducting research and development efforts on biometrics and voice screening to enhance the company’s driver screening tools. In addition, the company is looking into ways it can easily connect customers to … Read More on GeekWire