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The star of a Netflix show on kindness shares his foolproof way to become a better person


Leon Logothetis Kindness Diaries

Kindness isn't a zero sum game.

Leon Logothetis would know. The former stockbroker ultimately left the corporate world to travel the world on his yellow motorbike.

During his journeys, he relied on the generosity of strangers, who provided him with lodgings, meals, and gas. Logothetis would respond by completing an act of kindness for the Good Samaritans, in turn. The television producer and author documented his experience for the Netflix series "The Kindness Diaries."

Over the course of his voyage, Logothetis said he realized how people often think about kindness the wrong way.

"I would say kindness is a moment-to-moment practice," he told Business Insider. "You do not have to be perfect. I am not perfect. All my ex-girlfriends will tell you that."

He said it's best to treat kindness as a daily practice rather than a state of being.

"If you fall off the wagon and you scream at someone or you're mean to someone, that's okay," he said. "You're human. Just follow kindness moment to moment. It's a practice. Keep practicing it day in, day out, and things will change. Moment to moment, follow the path of kindness."

In Logothetis' travels around the globe, he found that people tend to want the same things, regardless of background — to be loved, to be seen, and to be heard. So practicing kindness can be as simple as striving to meet those needs in the moment.

Logothetis added that the biggest mistake you can make is giving up on yourself.

"Don't think, 'Oh I screamed at someone in the car, I'm an evil person and I can't be kind,'" he said. "No. Just do it moment to moment."

SEE ALSO: Jet.com execs say the trait they look for in job candidates is far more important than intelligence

Join the conversation about this story »

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The iPhone 8's new camera mode needs a lot of work


iPhone 8 plus portrait lighting

One of the big new features on the iPhone 8 Plus is Portrait Lighting, a new camera mode that uses the phone's dual-camera system to adjust the lighting around your subject to add different effects.

It's an enhancement to last year's Portrait photo mode, which was designed to bring the iPhone's camera closer to a high-end DSLR through software enhancements. Portrait mode's software separates the subject from their surroundings and creates a blurred effect in the background. The new Portrait Lighting mode uses a similar tactic to adjust the lighting effects around the subject.

Portrait Lighting launches in beta on the iPhone 8 Plus on Friday, but even though it's an early version of the software that will improve over time, it's clear that Apple has quite a bit more work to do. In my tests over the last week, I found that Portrait Lighting didn't work well unless real-world lighting conditions were just right. Sometimes, the results were abysmal, like someone had a few too many drinks before attempting to edit a photo in Photoshop. Other times, the photos looked great.

Here are some examples of the different Portrait Lighting effects:

Here's Manny. I took this photo using the normal Portrait Mode settings.

This is Stage Lighting. The software removed the background and made it look like a spotlight is shining on Manny. But it's still a bit rough around the edges.

Stage Lighting isn't perfect. Here's what happened when I tried it with my cat Larry. The result was terrible. Look at the jagged lines around his fur.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

I spent the weekend with a homeless community in New York to see what it's really like to live on the streets


new york city homelessnessTake a walk through any borough of New York City and you’re likely to encounter people living on the street.

Homelessness is on the rise in the city, up 39% from last year. And even more are opting to live in the city’s streets, parks, and alleys than shelters — nearly 4,000 as of July, the most since 2005.

There’s a vast diversity to the people living without secure housing, and the various situations they find themselves in.

In central Brooklyn, a flashpoint of gentrification in the city, we met Moustafa, a 48-year-old mechanic who lost his shop and his home three years ago.

Moustafa now lives nearby in a community of about a dozen homeless mechanics who live out of their vehicles and try to get work when they can. He invited us to spend the day and night with him to get a glimpse into what it’s really like to be homeless in New York.

Here’s what we saw:


SEE ALSO: I covered murders during Chicago's deadliest year in decades – here's what I saw

When we first met Moustafa, he was changing the the brakes on a car in the parking lot he lived in for a seemingly affluent customer. The area is full of industrial parking lots full of diesel trucks and small buses. He and his fellow homeless mechanics often do work for customers in them.




Some other people were hanging around the lot, but weren't interested in talking.

The lot had a number of small buses and vans parked in it that Moustafa said many of the homeless in the area lived in. Some people had built out patio areas in front of their vehicles with plants, flowers, and equipment for work.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Stunning, award-winning photos from the world's largest photo competition


Lead Visual Sasha

This September in Berlin, EyeEm, a global community and marketplace for photography and video, announced the winners of their fourth and largest photography competition yet.

More than 590,000 submissions from 88,000 photographers in over 150 countries submitted to the EyeEm Photography Festival, helping it become the largest photo competition in the world.

Below, see category winners and the stories behind the shots. All captions are by EyeEm.

SEE ALSO: Photos show how different family meals look in busy homes across America

The Portraitist category, Adeolu Osibodu, Ogun State, Nigeria

This was taken as part of Adeolu Osibodu's series, called "Losing Amos." Osibodu says: "My Grandfather Amos died in 2014. It was then that I realized how casual my idea of him was."

"I constantly asked myself why I couldn’t see beyond his heavy grins, why I couldn’t define him as more than the man who was never unhappy... these were unsettling thoughts that meddled with my conscience." Osibodu decided to take a series of self-portraits wearing different clothes his grandfather owned at various times in his life.

The Portraitist category, Adeolu Osibodu, Ogun State, Nigeria

"Maybe this is inspired by an urge to find consolation or my intimate affection for a time before, or me just being Adeolu. Regardless, I'm forever glad I happened to find myself in this state," said Osibodu.

The Street Photographer category, Julie Hrudova, Amsterdam, Netherlands

This photo was taken as part of Julie Hrudova's series, "LEISURE," which is an ongoing series that Hrudova says is "core to what my work is about." It's a play with photography being a trustworthy and truthful medium by creating some confusion about what is actually happening in the image, or why. Hrudova says her subjects are focused on their leisure activities and often isolated.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Amazon has triggered a $5 billion bidding war — here are the cities that are in competition for its new HQ


Jeff Bezos

Amazon has sparked a bidding war, and it's only just beginning.

The e-commerce giant said on Thursday that it was soliciting bids from cities across North America for a place to build its second headquarters — its first outside of the Seattle area.

Amazon said it would invest $5 billion in the construction of its new headquarters, and it hopes to eventually house 50,000 Amazon staff members there, gradually building up its workforce.

"We expect HQ2 to be a full equal to our Seattle headquarters," CEO Jeff Bezos said in a statement. "Amazon HQ2 will bring billions of dollars in up-front and ongoing investments, and tens of thousands of high-paying jobs. We're excited to find a second home."

Unsurprisingly, cities across the United States and Canada are jumping on the opportunity to lure Amazon to their neck of the woods. Many officials have already said they're planning to submit a formal proposal to the company.

Amazon has some requirements, however. Its new home would ideally be in a city with at least 1 million people, an international airport, and a "stable and business-friendly environment."

Of course, that means cities will need to offer incentives to the company for it to move there.

"Incentives offered by the state/province and local communities to offset initial capital outlay and ongoing operational costs will be significant factors in the decision-making process," the company said.

We've found nearly 50 cities whose officials have said they are looking into or preparing to submit a proposal to Amazon. Bids are due October 19.

SEE ALSO: Walmart says these will be the 25 toys every kid wants this holiday

Chicago, Illinois

According to the Chicago Tribune, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has already spoken to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos about the possibility of opening a headquarters in the city. Several other corporations — including McDonald's, Kraft Heinz, and Conagra Brands — have recently planned to move their base from the suburbs to this Midwestern hub.

Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota

Gov. Mark Dayton said in a statement that city and regional nonprofits and development agencies were working on a proposal for an Amazon headquarters in the Twin Cities.

Toronto, Ontario

Mayor John Tory called the race for the Amazon headquarters "the Olympics of bidding."

"We should be bidding for this and be very, very competitive, and I'm in the midst of talking to the other governments to make sure that's what we do," he said Thursday, according to The Toronto Star.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

My favorite goal-tracking app is only available 10 days a year — and it begins Wednesday


woman reading outside bench park

There are three months every year when my inbox floods with money-related questions: January, April, and September.

New Year's resolutions and tax time explain the first two. But when I first started out as a financial planner, September surprised me. Not that it should have. Back-to-school season is ingrained in many of us as a time to refocus on our to-do list and get serious about getting things done.

But in order to get things done, we have to identify what we're working toward. And then, we have to figure out a way to keep track of our progress toward those goals.

Enter my favorite goal-tracking app, 10Q. Think of it as one of those school assignments where you had to write a letter to your future self, and your teacher mailed it to you a year later.

Every fall, 10Q participants are emailed a question a day for 10 days, and answers are recorded in the site's "vault." The following year, your responses are emailed back to you, so you can reflect on how your year played out. Then, the process begins again.

Originally inspired by the 10 days of reflection between the Jewish holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, the free service is open to anyone. In 2017, 10Q kicks off on September 20, the day Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, begins at sunset.

The 10 questions (plus one bonus question) are not about money, per se. You'll be asked to describe a significant experience you've had in the past year, and if there's something you wish you had done differently. You'll also be asked to choose one thing you'd like to achieve by this time next year, and how you'd like to improve your life over the coming months.

The site is simple and easy to use. Questions appear like this:

10Q Day 1

Your answers can be short or long, and you can skip questions that don't resonate with you. Everything you write is private, unless you choose to share it, and subject to the highest industry standard encryption, according to the site.

If you miss a day, you can catch up whenever you have time, but you have to finish all 10 questions — and officially submit them to the "10Q vault" — within 72 hours of nightfall on September 30, when Yom Kippur ends this year. At that point, your answers are stored and saved until next year.

The first year I participated in 10Q, my biggest goal was to become fluent in Spanish. Writing down the goal and setting a time limit helped me decide to move to Colombia four months later, where I spent the first half of 2011 working remotely and learning Spanish with a tutor. The timing wasn't great, but the timing never is. If I hadn't pushed myself to achieve the goal then, I'm sure I would regret it today.

This year marks my eighth year using 10Q as a tool for reflection and goal-tracking, and much has changed in my life since I started. It's become a tradition I look forward to — a chance to review and reorient my goals, financial or otherwise. In addition to my monthly net worth tracking spreadsheet, it helps me stay focused and moving forward, no matter what life throws my way.

It's a habit I've seen work with my financial planning clients as well. If you've got the back-to-school, goal-setting itch, now is the time to use that momentum — and 10Q if it helps— to make your goals a reality this year.

SEE ALSO: After almost 10 years as a financial planner, I've found the best way to keep track of my money is still a simple spreadsheet

DON'T MISS: Here's how much you should have saved at every age

Join the conversation about this story »

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These $500 high-fashion sneakers are the ultimate status symbol for top tech CEOs


lanvin fashion

Members of the Silicon Valley elite are lacing up sneakers from a Parisian luxury fashion brand that cost more than most people's monthly grocery bill.

High-fashion house Lanvin makes chunky, low-top sneakers favored by tech heavyweights like Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and Google cofounder Larry Page. The shoes have a suggested retail price between $495 and $595.

Take a look at how the brand became a household name in an industry where professionals aren't always known for their fashion sense.

SEE ALSO: Silicon Valley is obsessed with these ultra-comfy, machine-washable shoes that cost $95 — here's why

In 2017, Business Insider's Avery Hartmans teamed up with online sneaker marketplace Flight Club to identify the rare, pricey, and goofy sneakers worn by the top tech CEOs.

Read the article »

We noticed that one brand stood out as a clear favorite for many of the Valley's elite.

Silicon Valley is obsessed with kicks by Lanvin.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

'There's no guarantee' you and your spouse will still be compatible in 5 years, says a relationship psychologist


marriage relationship proposal couple love

Preparing for my interview with psychologist Eli Finkel, there was one question I didn't really want to know the answer to.

Finkel is a psychologist at Northwestern University and the author of the book "The All-or-Nothing Marriage," in which he explains why modern marriage is so hard and what couples can do to strengthen their own relationship.

In one section of the book, Finkel addresses the issue of compatibility — how to maintain it with our partner, even as we both grow and change. And I was left worriedly wondering: Is it possible that a couple can start out perfectly compatible, and then become less so over time?

Here's the answer he gave: "Even if we achieve compatibility in the marriage, there's no guarantee that that compatibility will remain strong over time."


Those few years that you're dating, before you get engaged, are what Finkel calls a "snapshot." He said, "How representative of your overall life are those two [or however many] years going to be?"

That's especially true, Finkel added, if those two years are when you're "in your late 20s, and you're building a career, and you're still hanging out some with your college friends, and you have some new friends.

"But there aren't screaming toddlers; there aren't newborns pooping their diapers all the time. So the degree to which you're compatible right now isn't any sort of guarantee whatsoever that you'll be compatible even in three years or five years."

Finkel's unsettling observations reminded me of something Susan Pease Gadoua, co-author of "The New I Do," told me in July: It's helpful to know you have an "out" of your marriage. That is, if one or both people grow out of the relationship, it might be upsetting, but it won't be shameful to leave.

The psychologist Daniel Gilbert's research on the "end-of-history illusion" is especially relevant here. Gilbert suggests that most people have no idea how much they'll change in the future — which means you can't predict whether you'll still want the same things from your marriage in 10, 20, or 30 years.

Ideally, both people in a relationship will grow and change in tandem. But realistically, that doesn't always happen. For sure, it's a scary prospect, but it's one that we're better off embracing.

The real question here is whether or not you and your partner are determined to make the marriage function anyway — and there's no right answer.

Finkel said:

"The ''til death do us part' vow is so interesting because it says, 'You know, I'm going to change. I know I'm going to change. We're going to take this gamble. We're going to make this promise that says, regardless of all those sorts of changes and even when all those sorts of changes might lead us in a different direction, we are going to work super hard to try to make sure this marriage works."

SEE ALSO: A therapist explains why one of the most traditional beliefs about marriage is also the most damaging

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: RELATIONSHIP EXPERT: Trying to meet your partner’s needs is 'the most horrific advice I could imagine'

A dermatologist explains why she uses body wash instead of bar soap


Erin Gilbert is a practicing dermatologist in New York City. Here, she explains why she uses body wash instead of bar soap.

Following is a transcript of the video. 

So when you're looking for a product to use in your shower, you're going to have a lot of options.

I’m Dr. Erin Gilbert and I’m a dermatologist practicing in New York City.

You're going to have bar soaps, you're going to have body washes, you're going to have sponges that you can use that are exfoliating and, ultimately what you need to look at is the fact that a bar soap, for the most part, there are some — there’s some classics like Dove that are not as drying as others. But a lot of bar soaps are made to kind of give you this real squeaky clean feeling and so that lye that they have in them, or other components are actually designed to take away oil and they can take away too much oil. So, some of the body washes, and a lot of them actually will say “hydrating” on them, they contain things like a little bit of coconut oil or jojoba oil.

They're designed  — or even ceramide, some of them. Some of the newer products that are coming out that are a little more technically advanced. Those will actually replenish your skin’s liquid and your oil. So what you want to do is sort of think about what you're using to wash with. So, for me, I actually prefer body washes. I think bar soaps tend to be a little bit too drying. They’re convenient but, I have been a convert to the sort of poofy loofah thing with a body wash. That's what I do.

Join the conversation about this story »

Nest finally goes beyond thermostats and cameras with a video doorbell (GOOG, GOOGL)


ring hello

Nest, Google's smart-home cousin company under the Alphabet umbrella, just announced Nest Hello, a smart video doorbell, shipping in the first quarter of 2018. 

Nest didn't immediately announce a price for the Hello.

The Nest Hello is designed to replace your home doorbell. When visitors ring the bell, you'll get an alert on your phone, and you'll be able to use the Nest app and the Hello's built-in camera to see them and talk to them. 

This new device will go head-to-head with competing products from companies like Ring and August, both of which offer similar devices. Nest says that its doorbell uses artificial intelligence capabilities — it can identify a person standing at your door, whether or not they actually ring the bell.

NestThe Hello marks Nest's first brand-new product category since 2015, when it introduced the Nest Cam— a home security camera that was largely based on technology from Dropcam, a startup Nest bought for $555 million in 2014. Nest has previously come under scrutiny for what's perceived as its slow rate of releasing products.

Nest also announced the Nest Cam IQ Outdoor, a $349 version of its high-end 4K security camera intended to be mounted on the outside of your home.

Earlier this summer, Nest launched the Thermostat E, a cheaper version of its flagship Smart Thermostat in a revamped casing. 

CEO Marwan Fawaz said on stage that Nest's sales are actually accelerating. He claims that Nest shipped more products so far in 2017 than it did in 2015 and 2016, combined. 

SEE ALSO: Apple's new software, iOS 11, is out — here are 17 major ways your phone just changed

Join the conversation about this story »

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Nest just announced a full-fledged home-security system for $499 (GOOG, GOOGL)


nest secure

Nest, the smart-home arm of the Alphabet corporate umbrella, just announced Nest Secure, a full-fledged security system — taking on ADT, Comcast, and many others in the home-security space.

The Nest Secure starter set will cost $499 and include everything you'll need to get started: the Nest Guard, two Nest Detects, and two Nest Tags.

At the center of the system is the Nest Guard, a device the size of two hockey pucks with a numeric keypad that you'll use to arm and disarm the system. It looks a little like a larger Amazon Echo Dot and can be mounted on the wall or sit freely anywhere with a power outlet.

The Guard will ship alongside the $25 Nest Tag, a keychain fob you can use rather than punching in a code every time.

Nest is also offering the $59 Nest Detect, a motion-sensing device designed to be mounted in a door or window frame. Not only can it detect when a door or window opens or closes — it can also detect motion in a room and alert you on the Nest app.

Nest Secure system fob

Generally speaking, Nest is hyping up the simplicity and attention to detail in Nest Secure. For instance, a gentle voice from the Nest Guard will tell you how long you have to leave the home once the system is armed. And you can set times to automatically arm and disarm the system, in case you know you're going to be home.

You can also sign up for 24/7 professional monitoring, via a partnership with Moni Smart Security, for $5 a month. If you sign up for this service, Moni professionals will check in and dispatch police in the case of an emergency, much as you'd get with an established security-system player.

The Nest Secure system also integrates with the company's other products, including its existing Nest Cam security system, to control the whole system straight from your app.

This is Nest's third hardware launch on Wednesday — earlier, it unveiled the Nest Cam IQ Outdoor, as well as Nest Hello, an intelligent doorbell camera.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Everything we know about the Apple 'iPhone X' — which should be announced today

We went to Red Lobster's $21.99 Endless Shrimp to see if it's really unlimited


Red Lobster Endless Shrimp 2017 3

A lot can happen in a year. 

One year ago, we dreamed the impossible dream: endless shrimp, for $21.99. For seven and a half hours at Red Lobster, we gorged ourselves on the pink "candy of the sea" in a variety of preparations. It was a saga of mythological proportion and effort — one wonders if the Argonauts could handle such a task.

And yet, the shrimpy sirens' call rang in our ears again as Red Lobster's annual promotion began anew. 

Last year, we left an innocent world thinking we would happily munch on crustaceans for a couple of hours; instead, we entered a murky, briny alternate existence where the shrimp never stops. Three-hundred and five shrimp later, we wearily emerged from Red Lobster on that fated September night in 2016 into the blinking lights of Times Square.

When we returned this year, we had a sneaking suspicion that we never truly escaped the madness that is shrimp eternal. Come with us on this harrowing tale of shrimp and sacrifice: Red Lobster's Endless Shrimp, 2017. 

SEE ALSO: We visited the 'McDonald's of the Philippines,' which serves spaghetti and fried chicken alongside its burgers — here's what it's like

We arrived at the Times Square Red Lobster on September 12, 2017.

 The light seemed eerily similar, dancing on the chain's iconic red claws of destiny. 

We knew what we had to do: breakfast, lunch, and dinner, all shrimp. We'd done it before, last September — a time that now seemed both centuries away and all too near. 

Our goals were set. Last year, Hollis ate 162 shrimp, while Kate downed 143. This year, we were fighting against ourselves, with Hollis hoping to reach 175 and Kate determined to reach 150 — or die trying. 

Red Lobster's interior remained unchanged; a time capsule to the not-so-distant past.

We were seated at the same booth as the year prior at 11:25 am — as we slid across the maroon vinyl, it felt as though we had never left. These seats would be our safe harbor for the next seven hours, but had they been our prison for the last 12 months?

Had we, in fact, imagined the last year and all of its bizarre twists and turns in a shrimp-induced hallucination?

Even the soundtrack remained the same: a Mumford & Sons track played like a broken record in an empty casual seafood dining restaurant, echoing off the dark-stained wood. 


A shrimp delirium would explain what happened next.

We had told Red Lobster that we had planned to return for this "Shrimpsgiving", so it is likely they who sent "Clawd" to greet us. 

Still, a grown man in a lobster suit did remarkably little to reassure us that we had not fallen into a gap in the space-time continuum. 

Clawd, in his unsettling generosity, came bearing gifts — most notable of which was an official shrimp scoreboard to help us keep track of our progress. 

The lobsterous beast left as soon as he arrived, raising many questions yet answering none. Had our eyes deceived us in the dark, windowless restaurant? 

Et tu, Clawd?

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Here are all the multimillion-dollar condos for sale in San Francisco's leaning, sinking skyscraper


millennium tower san francisco

Rich residents looking to bail on Millennium Tower, a 58-story skyscraper in San Francisco that is sinking and tilting, are slashing prices to move their units on the real-estate market.

Several dozen condos at 301 Mission Street have hit the market since 2016, when the tower first made international headlines. Sellers have cut prices significantly in order to attract buyers.

Millennium Tower has sunk 17 inches and tilted 14 inches at the top since it was completed in 2008. An inspection by the city showed it's safe to occupy, though satellite images suggest the high-rise will continue to sink at a rate of two inches per year. It's unlikely to fall anytime soon, in part because it's sinking too slowly to take anyone by surprise. A fix is also in the works.

Here are all the multimillion-dollar homes currently for sale at Millennium Tower.

SEE ALSO: A 58-story skyscraper in San Francisco is tilting and sinking — and residents say their multimillion-dollar condos are 'nearly worthless'

The owners of a two-bedroom, two-bath home at Millennium Tower have taken $101,000 off the listing price since late July. Apartment 33E has spent nearly 200 days on Zillow.

The asking price of homes for sale in San Francisco has gone up 4.4% over the last year, according to real-estate site Redfin. Homes typically sell for 110% of the asking price.

Learn more about 301 Mission Street Apartment 33E » 

Apartment 33E is listed for $2.39 million, which is about double the median asking price for a two-bedroom home in San Francisco.

Source: Redfin

Natural light pours in through the floor-to-ceiling windows, which offer panoramic views.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

The 20 best smartphones in the world


iPhone 8 / iPhone 8 Plus

Phew! Everyone make it through the annual summer smartphone drought?

OK, good, because a bunch of new smartphones have recently been announced and released this month, and it's time to rejigger this list. 

We have a new top phone that replaces the Google Pixel, and we also had to make some tough decisions regarding the Galaxy S8 and iPhone 7.

Here's our list of the best smartphones you can buy right now.

Note: Prices may vary depending on the retailer.

SEE ALSO: 8 reasons Google's Pixel is better than the iPhone

DON'T MISS: These are the smartphones with the best signal strength

20. BlackBerry Classic

If you were a BlackBerry fan in the company's heyday, you're going to love the BlackBerry Classic. It looks similar to older BlackBerry models but features a sharp touchscreen and an excellent physical keyboard.

Price: $199

19. Sony XZ Premium

My colleague Jeff Dunn reviewed this phone, and he summed it up perfectly:

"This is a good phone. The screen is great, the software is clean, and the whole thing is superfast. But good isn't enough for $800. With its underwhelming battery and slippery, sometimes uncomfortable design, it's not the device that should reverse Sony's fortunes."

It's actually available now for $605 on Amazon, which is a better price for this phone.

Price: $605

Read the Sony XZ Premium review » 


18. BlackBerry KeyOne

The BlackBerry KeyOne with Android is the company's successor to the Priv, which also ran Android and had a slide-out physical keyboard. With the KeyOne, BlackBerry returned to basics and kept the keyboard as a permanent exterior feature.

This could be a great device for those who want a physical keyboard but also access to Google's apps and services, which aren't available on other BlackBerry devices.

Price: $538

Read the BlackBerry KeyOne review »

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

We went to a McDonald’s in Fiji and ate food you can't get in America


On a recent trip to Fiji, we drove into the city of Nadi to have dinner at the local McDonald's. Because the location is undergoing renovations, we couldn't eat inside, but thankfully the drive-thru was open. 

We got to experience the Spicy Mayo Chicken Burger, which you can't get in the US. They also serve their own version of Hot & Spicy Chicken wings and a McFlurry for dessert.

This is what it's like to eat Mickey D's in one of the most remote places on earth. 

Join the conversation about this story »

'The most persecuted minority in the world': Here's what you need to know about the Rohingya crisis


Rohingya muslim myanmar

With the United Nations convening this week for its annual General Assembly of speeches and meetings, several issues are taking center stage.

In addition to discussing the looming threat of a nuclear-capable North Korea, tensions with Iran, and combatting climate change, world leaders are also addressing the growing and increasingly dangerous crisis brewing between the Rohingya and Myanmar's military forces.

The crisi has led to hundreds of thousands of Rohingya being beaten, tortured, and displaced from their homes in the southeast Asian country. But it has gone relatively under-reported until recent weeks, when tensions between the minority ethnic group and Burmese forces boiled over into violence.

SEE ALSO: Here are 3 issues that will take center stage at this week's UN summit

DON'T MISS: 'We will kill you all': Rohingya villagers in Myanmar beg for safe passage

The Rohingya are a predominantly Muslim ethnic group that have lived for centuries in Buddhist-dominated Myanmar's Rakhine State. They make up roughly 2% of the country's population.

The government of Myanmar does not recognize the Rohingya as citizens, even though they've resided in the country since the 8th Century.

Rohingya Muslims are neither recognized as an ethnic group, nor as citizens, but as "resident foreigners." Because they are stateless, the Rohingya do not have freedom of movement, access to higher education, or the ability to hold public office.

Source: Myanmar's 1982 Citizenship Act

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

These 5 companies are subtly spreading religious messages — and many customers have no idea


in n out

Some major American companies are subtly sending religious messages to customers — even if most people don't notice. 

Brands like Chick-fil-A and Hobby Lobby have alienated some customers as executives' religious views have influenced business decisions at certain points in time. 

However, other companies' religious beliefs are less obvious — even though they're right under customers' noses. These brands hide Bible verses and other religious content in plain sight. 

Some religious customers see these hidden messages as a reason to celebrate, and they double down on their support of brands like In-N-Out and Forever 21. However, others feel that using religious language on packaging is offensive evangelizing to customers of different beliefs. 

Here are five companies that many customers may not realize are using their business to share religious messages. 

SEE ALSO: We visited the regional chain that Southerners say is better than In-N-Out and Shake Shack — here's the verdict

Forever 21

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Every Forever 21 shopping bag has the words "John 3:16" on the bottom. The verse, one of the best-known in the Bible, reads: "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." 

"It shows us how much God loves us," Forever 21 founder Do Won Chang told CNN in 2012. "The love he gave us, by giving us his only son, Jesus, was so unbelievable to me. I hoped others would learn of God's love. So that's why I put it there."


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The beloved West Coast burger chain stealthily puts Bible verses on much of its packaging. The wrapper on the famous "Double-Double" for example, lists Nahum 1:7 — "The Lord is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him" — according to Snopes.

Lynsi Snyder — the billionaire president of the California-based burger chain and the granddaughter of its founders — is a Christian who says she found peace through religion.


Trijicon, which makes optical sighting equipment for firearms, encountered controversy in 2010 when ABC News discovered the company was putting coded references to Bible verses on its products.  

The Trijicon ACOG (Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight), for example, has the inscription JN8:12. That refers to John 8:12: "When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, 'I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.'"

"Trijicon places a small biblical reference on the products we sell," the company's website reads.

"It is a tradition started by our founder and we continue it as a reflection of our company values," it continues. "Although Trijicon has now offered to remove these references for military issued products, we will continue to inscribe our consumer products with biblical references." 

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Seattle has entered the vicious $5 billion battle for Amazon's second headquarters — here's why that's a terrible idea (AMZN)


Amazon headquarters seattle dome

Seattle — home of Amazon's current headquarters — also wants to be the site of the e-commerce giant's second headquarters. 

Bruce Harrell, during his recent short-lived role as mayor of Seattle, signed an executive order stating the city's intent to compete for Amazon's second headquarters, local alternative newspaper The Stranger reported.

Amazon announced earlier in September that it was soliciting bids from cities across North America for a place to build its second headquarters. The e-commerce giant said it would invest $5 billion in the headquarters and that it plans to eventually house 50,000 Amazon employees there.

Currently, Amazon's Seattle headquarters employ more than 40,000 people. According to the company, the headquarters have created 53,000 jobs in the city in addition to pumping $38 billion into the local economy. 

Amazon's impact on Seattle is one reason other cities have been eager to compete for the company's second headquarters. But a second Amazon headquarters in the city would be truly cataclysmic. 

Amazon Seattle

Some Seattle residents already believe that Amazon has changed the city — and not for the better, with some calling the transformation "Amageddon." 

Housing costs are sky-rocketing, pushing some long-time residents out of the city. In 2016, an apartment in downtown Seattle's cost $42.08 per square foot to rent, compared with $39.79 in 2015 and $31.38 in 2009. Home values increased 11.2% in the last year alone, according to Zillow. 

Analysis by the software and traffic-data company Inrix found that Seattle drivers spent an average of 55 hours stuck in traffic in 2016. That places Seattle among the 10 worst US cities for congestion.

Jeff Reifman wrote in a 2014 op-ed in GeekWire:

"A lot about our Amazon-fueled future is just plain obvious: Seattle will be more male, even more white, wealthier and less diverse, unaffordable to those with lower incomes including the firestarters of culture, artists. The city's spacious skyline, which offered scenic views from many areas of town, will be forever transformed; anyone who lives here knows it already has been. Many parts of Seattle are unrecognizable from last year let alone a few years ago."

A second headquarters in a city with limited space — for a company that primarily hires college-educated people with an interest in tech — isn't going to solve these issues. It'll likely just make them worse. 

SEE ALSO: Cities are in a vicious, $5 billion battle over Amazon's headquarters — here's why they're crazy

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Critics call college rankings 'a joke' — here's why every list has a different No.1


walking campus students college

College rankings are ubiquitous as the school year starts. U.S. News & World Report, Niche, and Times Higher Education all released rankings in September. 

The proliferation of these rankings have led some to revolt against the concept of neatly bucketing schools on lists where they are in the "top" or "bottom" of rankings, especially as top performers tend to be expensive private schools, and ballooning student debt calls into question college affordability.

Frank Bruni, a columnist at New York Times, wrote an especially damning a piece ridiculing college rankings he called "Why College Rankings Are a Joke."

"The rankings nourish the myth that the richest, most selective colleges have some corner on superior education; don't adequately recognize public institutions that prioritize access and affordability; and do insufficient justice to the particular virtues of individual campuses," he wrote before the U.S. News rankings came out in 2016.

Yet the rankings are still highly cited, and do offer important data about aspects of a particular college, if readers are able to decipher them.

For those who are having a hard time understanding why college rankings all offer different results, Business Insider put together a few charts to break down the anatomy of each.

Artboard 4U.S. News has been ranking American colleges annually for more than 30 years. Since then, a familiar cast of Ivy League colleges has dominated the top three slots, with Harvard, Princeton, and Yale typically rounding out the top three. In recent years, the University of Chicago has inched its way up the list and tied with Yale this year.

The methodology includes both quantitative and qualitative factors. Graduation and retention rates make up one of the most weighted components, which is backed by data. But equally highly weighted at 22.5% are the "opinions of those in a position to judge a school's undergraduate academic excellence."

That means an aspect of highly ranked universities may be self-perpetuating. Princeton's No. 1 ranking may contribute to its excellent reputation, which boosts qualitative rankings by peers, in turn helping it keep its No. 1 ranking.

At 20%, faculty resources is the third most important component of the methodology, which includes class size, faculty salary, and proportion of professors with the highest degree in their fields.

The top 10 colleges as ranked by U.S. News & World Report:

10. California Institute of Technology

9. Duke University

8. University of Pennsylvania

5. Stanford University (tie)

5. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (tie)

5. Columbia University (tie)

3. Yale University (tie)

3. University of Chicago (tie)

2. Harvard University

1. Princeton University


Niche also ranks US colleges and universities, and places substantial weight on reviews from students and alumni. Niche prides itself on the qualitative nature of its ranking, boasting that it has "the most comprehensive data in the industry" and is "able to provide a more comprehensive suite of rankings across all school types."

In fact, survey responses from students and alumni factor into every single component of the methodology, even ones readers may assume are purely data-driven. For example, the largest weighted factor is the "academics grade" which includes: acceptance rate, quality of professors, as well as student and alumni surveys regarding academics at the school.

While U.S. News doesn't incorporate salary, Niche looks to the financial "value" of the college, and includes statistics on average loan about and alumni earnings. But the average loans and alumni earnings component also includes student surveys regarding the value of the school.

The top 10 colleges as ranked by Niche:

10. California Institute of Technology

9. Bowdoin College

8. Brown University

7. University of Pennsylvania

6. Princeton University

5. Rice University

4. Yale University

3. Harvard University

2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

1. Stanford University

bi_graphics_collegerankThe Times Higher Education World University Rankings, as the name alludes, ranks schools around the world. Like the U.S. News ranking, the methodology includes a mix of both quantitative and qualitative factors.

The teaching component includes a reputation survey given to measure the "perceived prestige of institutions in teaching" as well as the student-teacher ratio at the school.

Research includes a survey to judge "university's reputation for research excellence among its peers," and a measure of income the school makes related to its research.

Citations are a measure of how often a university's published work is cited by scholars globally, and international outlook is the ability of a university to attract students and faculty from all over the world.

The top 10 US colleges as ranked by Times Higher Education:

10. Columbia University

9. Johns Hopkins University

8. Yale University

7. University of Pennsylvania

6. University of Chicago

5. Princeton University

4. Harvard University

3. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

1. Stanford University (tie)

1. California Institute of Technology (tie)

SEE ALSO: The most affordable highly-ranked college in every state

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TGI Fridays will start delivering booze — and it could help defeat a curse sweeping the restaurant industry


TGI Fridays

TGI Fridays wants to give customers the chance to chug the chain's margaritas from the comfort of their own couches.

On Thursday, Fridays announced it had partnered with the delivery startup Lash to begin delivering alcoholic beverages with food orders placed via the chain's mobile app. The Texas-based company plans to test the service in Houston and Dallas in the coming months before rolling it out across the US next year.

"We're a bar-centric business," Caroline Masullo, Fridays' vice president of digital strategy, told Business Insider. "Right now, no one — from within their own technology — is delivering both food and alcohol."

To-go and delivery sales are a rare bright spot in the casual-dining industry right now, with Fridays growing take-out sales by 30% since launching online ordering last summer.

Booze is also crucial to TGI Fridays' strategy. The chain has recently emphasized its history as a bar as millennial interest in sit-down casual-dining chains has withered.

But delivering alcohol is a legally tricky proposition. TGI Fridays and Lash will tweak the service on a state-by-state basis (what Masullo calls a "block by block" strategy) to follow local ordinances.

TGI Fridays Apps

While food and alcohol will be delivered together when ordered on TGI Fridays' app, the delivery person is actually making two stops, first at a liquor store and then at Fridays.

For cocktails, the company says, customers will be able to order an "everything but the booze" kit, which is sold by Fridays, alongside a suggested bottle of liquor from a local liquor store. Customers can then mix the drink themselves at home. Fridays is also considering making bartenders available for hire via the app.

Here's a video showing how the process is supposed to work:

While TGI Fridays' booze-delivery plan is a bit complicated behind the scenes, the chain hopes it can help drive incremental sales and stand out from what the company calls a "sea of sameness" among sit-down restaurants.

Casual-dining chains including Applebee's, Buffalo Wild Wings, and Ruby Tuesdays are facing slumping sales and store closings. Factors including millennials' indifference to casual-dining classics and the rise of fast-casual chains have played a role in their downfall.

As a result, many chains have doubled down on aspects of their business that they hope will differentiate them from the competition. Applebee's wants to win back baby boomers, while Chili's has revamped its menu to refocus on burgers and ribs.

Now, TGI Fridays is betting on delivery and booze — together and apart — to win over customers.

SEE ALSO: Applebee's is ditching millennials after they forced hundreds of restaurant closures

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