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The latest news on Features from Business Insider

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    amazon arlington

    When Amazon announced this week that it would locate half of its second headquarters (known as HQ2) in National Landing, Virginia, even locals were confounded by the name

    "Amazon is so stupid rich [and] powerful they literally just rebranded an entire city," one writer tweeted.

    Hours after the announcements came out, the website DCist was already brainstorming hilarious slogans, including "National Landing: Your Friends Still Won’t Visit You In Arlington," and "National Landing: Who Says You Can't Force A Nickname?"

    But what does that nickname actually refer to?

    According to the official page for Northern Virginia's HQ2 bid, National Landing consists of three "connected urban districts," including two in Arlington (Crystal City and Pentagon City) and one in Alexandria (Potomac Yard).

    It's essentially a new neighborhood carved out by Amazon, though many of its details remain unclear. 

    Much of the property in the area is currently held by local developer JBG Smith, which has given Amazon exclusive rights to purchase some of its land and lease space in several of its buildings. As development commences on a new headquarters, Amazon will rent out 500,000 square feet of office space for its incoming employees.

    In the wake of Amazon's announcement, JBG Smith has opted to kick-start many of its unfinished projects, including a shopping and entertainment district with a 49,000-square-foot theater. Take a look at what National Landing could eventually look like. 

    Amazon's National Landing headquarters will stretch 4.1 million square feet, with the goal of accommodating 25,000 new employees.

    The new headquarters will likely be located at Pen Place, a development site in Pentagon City.

    One of the centerpieces of National Landing will be a 130,000-square-foot shopping and entertainment space known as Central District Retail.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    • Amazon announced on Tuesday that it will split its second headquarters project, which it calls HQ2, in two with locations in Queens, New York, and Arlington, Virginia.
    • Jeff Bezos bought a residential property in the Kalorama neighborhood of Washington, DC, for $23 million in 2016.
    • The two structures on the property have nearly 27,000 square feet of living space — it's the largest home in Washington, DC.
    • Bezos is said to be spending $12 million to renovate the homes and the surrounding property.
    • The new mansion will have a ballroom, a whiskey cellar, elevators, a garden room, 11 bedrooms, and 25 bathrooms. 

    Amazon announced on Tuesday that it will split its second headquarters project, which it calls HQ2, in two with locations in Queens, New York, and Arlington, Virginia.

    In 2016, Bezos paid $23 million in cash for a property in DC's exclusive Kalorama neighborhood, home to the Obamas as well as Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner. It's less than six miles from the future site of Amazon's offices.

    Bezos is said to be spending $12 million to renovate the homes and the surrounding property. 

    While the property doesn't appear to offer much privacy in the front — it was the site of the Textile Museum for about a century — it includes two separate structures with nearly 27,000 square feet of living space and a spacious backyard.

    The larger of the two homes, the Wood House, will be for entertaining guests, while the Pope House will serve as the family's living quarters when they're in town. The Bezos' home base is in Medina, Washington — a secluded, 5.3-acre compound on the shores of Lake Washington.

    The renovation plans were approved in September 2017 and are now underway. Below, check out the floor plan of Bezos' future mansion in Washington, DC.

    SEE ALSO: Jeff Bezos is so rich that spending $1 to the average person is like $88,000 to him — here's what spending looks like when you're a billionaire

    DON'T MISS: Jeff Bezos, the richest person in the world, thinks it's possible to blow through his entire $131 billion fortune — and he has one big purchase he plans to spend it on

    The property comprises two buildings plus a garage with staff quarters, a garden pavilion, and an attached garden room.

    The Washingtonian got its hands on the blueprints for Bezos' home renovation earlier this year, and Business Insider used them to create these floor plans. The architecture firm overseeing the expansion, Barnes Vanze, specializes in historic restoration.

    The plans show that the lot size is 34,000 square feet and has two structures, which made up the former Textile Museum, connected by a second-story walkway. Both structures were built in the early 1900s and are part of the National Register of Historic Places.

    According to the plans, the existing driveway will be widened and restored, and the curb will be replaced with granite. "Privacy plantings" will be added to the perimeter of the property as well.

    In the backyard, a new terrace will be added off the back of the Wood House with a "garden room" linking the two. Behind the Pope House, a wooden pergola and existing fountain will be restored. At the back of the lot there's a new garden pavilion that will have a gas fireplace. A pathway leads to a one-bedroom house for the property's caretaker that sits above a two-car garage.

    The Pope House will be the family's private living quarters.

    The Pope House was designed by and named for John Russell Pope, the architect behind the Thomas Jefferson Memorial.

    On the left side of the property and standing three stories tall, this home will be the Bezos' main living quarters, according to the Washingtonian. Plans were publicly available for only the lower level, so it's possible other floors aren't being renovated now.

    A huge lounge with a bar is the main event on the lower level, in addition to a whiskey cellar (complete with drying racks), an adjacent wine room, and a large kitchen.

    Upstairs, there appear to be multiple bedrooms, an exercise room, a TV room, and a kitchenette. The house has a total of 10 bathrooms.

    The Wood House will be used for entertaining.

    The Washingtonian said Bezos and his wife, Mackenzie, would most likely use the Wood House for "A-level socializing," describing it as the "party pad of epic proportions."

    A nearly 1,500-square-foot ballroom takes up one side of the main level and rises two stories. A new limestone fireplace, staff bar room, and promenade with a balcony overlooking the space add to the grandeur.

    On the other side, a spacious living room and a gallery lined with windows looking out to the front of the property are separated by another set of stairs. Visitors can also opt for the nearby elevator.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    iPhone XS Max

    Apple's newest crop of phones is here, which means you may be thinking about finally upgrading from your older iPhone. 

    During the past few years, it hasn't been easy to justify shelling out for a new phone if you're using an iPhone 5S, 6, or 6S. The design has been similar, the camera hasn't seen a major upgrade, and the battery life hasn't necessarily been such a major jump from older devices. 

    But now that the iPhone XR, iPhone XS, and iPhone XS Max have arrived, it feels like time to consider a new phone, especially if you're on an iPhone 6S or earlier. 

    If you haven't bought an iPhone in the last year, however, you're going to be in for a few major changes, especially if you opt for the extra-large iPhone XS Max, which is a pretty big departure from iPhones of years past.

    Here are the six biggest things you'll notice when making the switch:

    SEE ALSO: Here's how the new $400 Apple Watch Series 4 compares to last year's model, the Apple Watch Series 3

    1. The screen

    The most notable thing about the iPhone XS Max is the screen — the big, beautiful screen. 

    First and foremost, the XS Max has an OLED display, which no older iPhones have, save for the iPhone X. Blacks look blacker, whites look whiter, and the whole display is just more gorgeous and immersive than what you're probably used to on an LCD screen. 

    Besides being a better display, it's also going to be much bigger than what you're used to. It's the largest display of any iPhone, ever, and goes nearly edge-to-edge (save for the notch at the top, and some thin bezels along all four sides). 

    2. The size and weight

    Beyond having a great big screen, the XS Max has a great big body, too. It's the biggest, heaviest iPhone Apple sells, and also the largest phone it's ever made. 

    Here are the specs:

    • Height: 6.20 inches (157.5 mm)
    • Width: 3.05 inches (77.4 mm)
    • Depth: 0.30 inch (7.7 mm)
    • Weight: 7.34 ounces (208 grams)

    Compare that to the iPhone 6, which is 5.44 inches by 2.64 inches and weighs just 4.55 ounces, and it's pretty striking. If you're used to your small, lightweight phone, you may be in for a bit of a shock. 

    3. The camera

    When I compared my iPhone 6S to the iPhone 8 Plus last year, I was taken aback by how little difference there was between the two cameras, which were two generations apart. While the 8 Plus won in a few situations, there wasn't enough of an improvement to warrant buying the new device for the camera alone. 

    One year later, that's no longer the case. 

    I've been using the XS Max for about a week, and every time I switch back to my own phone, I'm disappointed by how my photos look. The camera isn't as sharp, it doesn't perform half as well in low light, and the colors look dull. Plus, my old phone can't do things like portrait mode on both the front and rear cameras. 

    It's officially gotten to the point where the 6S (and, I imagine, the phones that came before it) feel outdated, camera-wise.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    wine friends

    • Picking the right wine to bring to a holiday party can be tricky — you want it to complement the food being served and you want everyone to like it.
    • We talked to a sommelier and beverage expert for her picks on the best bottles of wine to bring to seven different types of holiday parties.
    • Our expert gave bottle suggestions at three different price points: under $20, $20 to $50, and $50 and up.

    'Tis the season for parties — and unlimited trips to the wine store.

    From Thanksgiving to Hanukkah to Christmas, it's not surprising that wine consumption spikes in October, November, and December, according to The Beverage Spot.

    Bringing the right bottle to any holiday party or dinner can be tricky — there's a lot of pressure to pick a bottle that complements the food you'll be eating and guests' palates, especially if you're on a budget. 

    We talked to Gretchen Thomas, sommelier and vice president at Del Frisco's Grille and Barcelona Wine Bar, to get her picks on the best wines to bring for eight different holiday occasions. The holidays can get expensive, so we included three different price points: under $20, $20 to $50, and $50 and up.

    From Friendsgiving to your best friend's Secret Santa party, here are the best wines to bring to your next holiday party.

    SEE ALSO: The 3 most important things to look for on a wine label, according to an expert

    DON'T MISS: 12 secrets to enjoying the perfect bottle of wine, according to wine experts

    Family Thanksgiving reunion: Pinot noir

    Under $20: Montinore Estate, Willamette Valley

    $20 to $50: Anthill Farms, Anderson Valley

    $50 and up: Domaine de la Cote, Santa Rita Hills

    According to Thomas, Thanksgiving needs a wine that can bridge different flavors and textures since sweet sides and sauces are often served with the meal.

    "The wine also needs to please many palates and work as a complement (not a scene stealer) to what is the most important dinner of the year for many American families," she said. "A fruity, medium to full-bodied west coast Pinot Noir works great for this."

    Friendsgiving feast: Sparkling wine

    Under $20: Juve y Camps Reserva de la Familia Brut Nature

    $20 to $50: Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut

    $50 and up: Billecart-Salmon Blanc des Blancs

    "Friendsgiving is my favorite annual holiday, and it's all about eating fall-inspired foods often more adventurous than what might be served at the traditional family Thanksgiving and celebrating life with your best friends," Thomas said. "Nothing works better for this than a great bottle of bubbles."

    A Hanukkah dinner: Sparkling wine, rosé, or a full-bodied red

    Kosher options/non-Kosher options:

    Under $20: LaMarca Prosecco / Gramona La Cuvee Gran Reserva Cava

    $20 to $50: Celler Capcanes Peraj Petita Rosat / Robert Sinskey Vin Gris of Pinot Noir

    $50 and up: Celler de Capcanes Peraj Ha'abib / Casas del Bosque Gran Reserva Pinot Noir

    Traditional Hanukkah dishes offer an array of flavors, Thomas said, adding that some, like the sweetness of noodle kugel, are difficult for wine pairing, while others, like potato latkes and matzo ball soup, pair easily. 

    "Rather than suggesting one type of wine to cover the entire dinner, the kosher suggestions offer the perfect pairings for the dinner — beginning with a sparkling, [continuing] with a soft and fruit rosé, and finishing the dinner (brisket time!) with a full-bodied and rich red wine," she said.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    University of Colorado

    • Choosing the right college isn't all about prestige and name recognition.
    • Business Insider compiled a list of the top 50 underrated colleges nationwide.
    • We considered reputation and earnings to determine the ranking, using data from US News & World Report and the US Department of Education.
    • The Missouri University of Science & Technology took the No. 1 spot.

    Whether a student is more inclined to learn about artificial intelligence or take up photography, several factors play a role in choosing the right college.

    Business Insider has complied a ranking of the top 50 underrated colleges nationwide by considering two factors: reputation and future earnings. We figured that schools with mediocre or obscure reputations but whose students made high salaries would be underrated.

    To determine our ranking, we combined the mutually exclusive sets of Best Universities and Best Liberal Arts Colleges from The US News & World Report's annual college ranking. We pulled data on median earnings for students from each school who were working and not enrolled ten years after starting at the college from the US Department of Education's College Scorecard. You can read the full methodology here.

    The Missouri University of Science & Technology took the No. 1 spot. The campus has an atmosphere students described as a less stereotypical Big Bang Theory episode, according to The Princeton Review.

    Keep reading to find out the 50 most underrated colleges.

    SEE ALSO: Here's how we ranked the most underrated colleges in America

    DON'T MISS: The 50 best US colleges for your money

    50. Immaculata University

    Location: Immaculata, Pennsylvania 

    US News ranking: 183

    Median mid-career salary: $50,600

    There are 1,482 students at Immaculata and class sizes are relatively small. The admissions acceptance rate is 83% with an average high school GPA of 3.26.

    49. University of San Diego

    Location: San Diego, California

    US News ranking: 85

    Median mid-career salary: $60,000

    The University of San Diego is a moderately sized liberal arts Catholic school with a "laid back" student body, according to There are a total of 5,774 undergraduates representing 57 foreign countries

    48. Carnegie Mellon University

    Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 

    US News ranking: 25

    Median mid-career salary: $83,600

    Carnegie Mellon's motto is "my heart is in the work" which resonates from engineering to drama majors. The university has a 22% acceptance rate and an average high school GPA of 3.77.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Earlier this year, the hashtag #DeleteFacebook was trending on Twitter as users deleted their Facebook accounts en masse.

    The trend came as a result of a report that revealed that data from over 50 million Facebook users was used to target voters and influence the 2016 US presidential election, as well as the 2016 "Brexit" referendum.

    #DeleteFacebookMore recently this week, a New York Times report detailed Facebook's mishandling of Russian interference on the platform in the 2016 election, as well as the employment of the Republican opposition research firm Definers Public Affairs to discredit liberal financier George Soros of "lobbying a Jewish civil rights group to cast some criticism of the company as anti-Semitic."

    For some users, the latest scandal is the last straw pushing them to delete their account. Your own personal decision of what to do with your Facebook account amid the company's scandals is ultimately up to you. Keeping your account is easy and doesn't require any change. 

    Deleting your account isn't as straightforward. If you've made the choice to delete your account, here's how to do it:

    SEE ALSO: Facebook users are livid about the handling of Cambridge Analytica's data harvesting — #DeleteFacebook is trending

    DON'T MISS: After using Facebook and Twitter for more than 10 years, I quit both

    There are two options: Deactivate your account or delete your account. They are not the same.

    Are you trying to remove all your information from Facebook or are you just trying to hide it? That's the question at the heart of your two choices here.

    Here's the difference:

    Deactivation means you can log back in whenever you want and everything will return as you left it. Your page will disappear for as long as your account remains deactivated. Friends can't see it, and you'll seemingly disappear from Facebook. BUT! Should you ever choose to return to Facebook, you can simply log back in.

    Deletion means what it sounds like: You're straight up deleting everything you've ever put on Facebook. This does not include messages sent through Facebook Messenger, but does include literally everything else (from your profile information to wall posts). You've got a short window of time between choosing deletion and everything actually being deleted; if you sign in within a few days, you can still cancel the deletion process.

    Here's Facebook's official language on deletion: "It may take up to 90 days from the beginning of the deletion process to delete all of the things you've posted, like your photos, status updates or other data stored in backup systems. While we are deleting this information, it is inaccessible to other people using Facebook."

    Deactivating your account is much easier, but doesn't actually delete your information from Facebook's servers.

    As someone who recently deactivated his Facebook account, I can attest to how quickly this process goes — it's just a few minutes. I also liked the peace of mind of being able to recover my Facebook information should I ever choose to rejoin.

    That said, beware: Deactivating your Facebook account does not delete your information from Facebook's servers. It's hidden from other users, unavailable to the public, but it continues to live on in Facebook's vast digital-storage vaults. If you're ever interested in revisiting the photos you posted to Facebook way back when, or getting back in touch with that long-lost friend, you may want to deactivate your Facebook page instead of outright deleting it.

    That said: If you're trying to make sure your data doesn't get scraped in the future, the best way to ensure that is to request that Facebook delete it.

    ONE LAST WARNING: You should probably download all your Facebook information before deleting your account.

    Facebook will put together all your Facebook information and give it to you as a download if you request it. It's an archive request, basically.

    There's a simple process for requesting this data that must be done before deletion:

    1. Log in to your Facebook account.

    2. Click the top right of your account and select the Settings option.

    3. In Settings, click the "Download a copy of your Facebook data" option in the General Account Settings area.

    4. Await your archive by email.

    That's it!

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you'll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.

    mark & graham, $139

    Cooking meals for huge groups of people, traveling far and wide to spend time with family, searching for gifts for everyone on your list — as fun as they are, the holidays can get pretty stressful, too. There's a lot to think about, and some of the decisions are pretty high pressure — like figuring out what to get for your in-laws. Whether you're staying with them for a large chunk of the holidays or just stopping by for dinner, for the sake of you and your partner, you need to make a good impression. 

    You don't need to go overboard, but there are plenty of thoughtful gifts that show your in-laws you care. To ease your mind, we gathered some great gifts that cover a wide range of prices. Whether they're small gifts like candy or bigger ones like kitchen appliances, what these all have in common is that your in-laws will love them.

    Looking for more gift ideas? Check out all of Insider Picks' holiday gift guides for 2018 here

    A coffee subscription box for trying new beans

    Whole Bean Subscription, from $24/month, available at Blue Bottle Coffee

    If they love coffee, they’ll love getting the chance to try a bunch of new brews (twice) every month. Blue Bottle’s beans are high quality, packaged at peak flavor, and come in a range of unique blends.

    An indoor garden for urban dwellers and herb lovers

    Click & Grow Smart Garden, $99.95, available at Amazon

    Anyone who spends time in the kitchen or garden knows how much fresh herbs can upgrade a dish. While not all climates or spaces can sustain a full herb garden, this little indoor gardening kit can, so they can top every last dish with their favorite fresh herbs.

    A statement print for major baseball fans

    Baseball Stadium Blueprints, $185, available at Uncommon Goods

    A little bit of history, a little bit of architecture, and a whole lot of team spirit — whether you support their favorite team or not, they’ll appreciate this thoughtful print that’ll quickly find a home on one of their walls.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Ezra Miller

    Ezra Miller stars as Credence Barebone in "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald," but he's not a new face in Hollywood.

    The 26-year-old actor has showcased his versatility in films spanning different genres — from the coming-of-age hit "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" (where he played a teenager named Patrick) to the superhero movie "Justice League" (where he starred as Barry Allen/The Flash).

    Acting aside, he's stepped out on red carpets with jaw-dropping looks and delighted fans with his recent feature for Playboy magazine.   

    Keep reading to learn more about Miller. 

    He was arrested as a kid.

    During an interview with his "Fantastic Beasts" co-stars, Miller admitted that he was arrested at 10 years old for spray painting the phrase, "stop sweatshop labor," on a Gap store. He did it twice, and was caught the second time.

    That's not his only encounter with the law though. Miler was also pulled over for possession of 20 grams of marijuana in Pittsburgh, where he was filming "The Perks of Being a Wallflower." He ended up getting fined $600 for two citations of disorderly conduct.

    Miller is a trained opera singer.

    Miller was born with a speech impediment and did therapy. However, it made him "more aware of the stutter, which actually made it worse." So instead, he turned to opera and started training at 6 years old.  

    The actor told The Daily Beast that opera training focused on "control and manipulation of the breath," which explains how he overcame his stutter after one year. 

    Miller dropped out of high school when he was 16.

    He attended the Hudson School in Hoboken, New Jersey, but left to pursue acting. Around the same time, Miller starred in the 2008 drama "Afterschool" and then landed a recurring role on the show "Californication." 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you'll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.


    International travel, from a distance, can seem like one big graph — replete with peaks and valleys. The peaks are almost exclusively confined to the trip, and the deep valleys occur in the preparation, airport, and ensuing jet lag.

    But thanks to my work as a product reviewer, I see a high volume of great tools and products designed just to make traveling easier. And on my recent trip abroad, I decided to put a few of them to the test. What I got was a trip that was markedly easier — and more enjoyable — from start to finish than any other I’ve planned before. 

    Below, you’ll find 15 purchases that made my last international trip a breeze — just in case any of them might be helpful to you, too:

    DON'T MISS: 11 common travel annoyances and how to fix them immediately

    Reliable, impressively affordable Wi-Fi that goes where you go

    Skyroam Solis WiFi Hotspot and Power Bank, $149.99

    Skyroam day passes (5 for the price of 4), $40

    Skyroam Solis was probably the number one most helpful thing I packed. It's a portable Wi-Fi hotspot that offers unlimited 4G LTE service without having to worry about cell data overages or big fees. The device itself is $149.99 on Amazon and the Skyroam "day passes" for wifi are $40 for 5 days ($8 per day). For the $8 per day, you can hook up to five devices at a time to the Solis. If you're traveling with family or friends, that means that one day pass will cover everyone's data for the day. Over our five-day trip, it worked almost flawlessly.

    Part of the joy of international travel is not always having wifi, but we really only used it for necessities like Google Maps and looking up more information on the sights we were enjoying. It allows you the considerable luxury of being flexible with your choices, and can save a closed restaurant, museum, or unfortunate turn of events from ruining your day.

    A website that plans your trip for you for $25/day, complete with booking hotels and making your reservations

    Travel with Journy for $25 a day

    Before I remembered Journy, I was so stressed out by the details of planning the trip (researching restaurants abroad, mapping out must-see sights to group them by neighborhood, and allocating time for all the activities we wanted to include) that I wasn't even enjoying the anticipation of a big trip.

    For $25 per day of your trip, Journy basically takes care of all of the travel stressors so you can relax without missing out while you're gone. You work with a seasoned concierge who designs your itinerary, books hotels, makes restaurant reservations, and keeps your priorities and preferences in mind. In other words, it's a huge relief. If you want more details, you can find a full review here

    A phone case that keeps cards and IDs within reach at all times

    Incipio Stowaway Credit Card Case, from $13.95

    Both myself and Insider Picks editor Ellen Hoffman are longtime fans of Incipio's lean but functional Stowaway card case. It keeps my debit card, ID, and metro pass within easy reach instead of zipped in my bag or loose in my pocket while I'm traveling, which is a real lifesaver.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Sri Lanka train from Kandy to Nuwara Eliya

    The train journey between Kandy and Ella through Sri Lanka's central highlands is well-documented.

    You may recognise the scene above — a train crossing over Nine Arches Bridge near Ella — from innumerable sepia-toned travel blogs with the word "nomad" clumsily shoe-horned into the title.

    A quick search of the route on YouTube will yield dozens of tanned influencers who have documented their journey hanging out of the doors over verdant tea terraces.

    Despite all the puffery, though, nothing could have prepared us for what the journey was actually like.

    I've been lucky enough to travel on a number of extraordinary train journeys, from bullet trains through southern China to the Venice Simplon Orient Express through the British countryside. The 8:47 from Kandy to Ella topped them all, though — and it only cost me $3.

    Scroll down to see exactly what it's like to make the seven-hour journey, from start to finish.

    SEE ALSO: 12 things I wish I'd known before going on safari in Sri Lanka, which I'm convinced is going to be Asia's next tourist hotspot

    We arrived at Kandy station, which is in the heart of Sri Lanka, bright and early. We wanted to catch the 8:47 train to Ella, in the island's famous hill country. To get our tickets, though, we would have to be fast. Second-class tickets are only available on the day and sell out rapidly. Third-class tickets are also available but we didn't fancy standing in a cramped carriage with other travellers for seven hours straight.

    Why didn’t we opt for first class? Well, for starters, tickets sell out months in advance, and you have to book via a travel agency, and nobody has time to be that organised. Secondly, while there is luxurious AC, you can’t open the windows in first-class — meaning you'll never get the same picture-perfect views that you will in second or third class.

    The train tickets in Sri Lanka are absurdly cheap. Our seven-hour, 158 km trip from Kandy to Ella cost us just 210 Sri Lankan Rupees, which is around $3.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    America's 38 essential restaurants to eat at in 2018 have been revealed.

    Eater has published its annual guide compiled by the food site's national critic Bill Addison, who consumed nearly 600 meals in 36 cities in a bid to discover the very best.

    Along the way, Addison says he noticed that what it means for food to be deemed "American" is changing: "Coded culinary language denoting 'them' and 'us' — as 'American' or 'other' — is slowly but inexorably dissolving," he wrote.

    This year, 17 new restaurants make the list.

    Here are the 38 best restaurants in the US in 2018, according to Eater.

    2M Smokehouse, San Antonio

    Addison says the chefs here "transcend the Texas smoked-meats melee by also serving a frictionless combination of dishes that express their Mexican-American heritage."

    Atelier Crenn, San Francisco

    Dominique Crenn won praise for finding "the middle ground between intellect and emotion, between heady presentation and flat-out deliciousness."

    Brennan's, New Orleans

    Brennan's has made the list for perfectly balancing "timeless pageantry and relevant, finely honed cooking."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    purple oneplus 6t

    Here we are, then, taking a look at photos from the best camera on a smartphone versus the best value in a smartphone in the world. 

    I'm talking about the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, which cost $800 to $900, respectively, and the OnePlus 6T, which starts at $550.

    To buy a Pixel smartphone, including the Pixel 3, is not usually a decision based on design. In my experience, it's a decision based on using the purest form of Android, getting the latest Android updates as soon as they're released, and having the best camera on any smartphone.

    The Pixel 3 does, indeed, have a better overall camera than the OnePlus 6T. But the difference isn't that stark. After my test shoot, I'm wondering if one of the Pixel's main propositions as the best smartphone camera is diminishing.

    Check out photos taken with the Pixel 3 XL (which has the same camera as the smaller Pixel 3) and the OnePlus 6T:

    SEE ALSO: Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S10 smartphone could be an impressive overhaul in design and features — here are 10 rumors about what it'll look like

    The Pixel 3 does what Pixels do: Take contrast-y shots with deeper colors and more detail than other phones. But it doesn't always look significantly better.


    Here's a perfect example of when the Pixel's strengths work against it. The OnePlus 6T's shot is clearly better with its brighter colors. The Pixel's photo looks positively dull here.


    And the same goes here.


    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Typically I take my lunch to work. It's healthier than always eating out and helps me save some dough. But microwaved leftovers and soggy PB&J's can get old.

    So I decided to try out Ritual, an order-ahead app that I've seen advertised all around San Francisco's Financial District. It's also available in most major US cities like New York City, Chicago, and Washington, DC.

    I was initially wary of Ritual. If I wanted a food app for the sole purpose of convenience, why wouldn't I splurge on a food-delivery app like Caviar that would bring food right to me?

    Or if I were optimizing on price, why wouldn't I use MealPal, the monthly subscription service where lunches from local restaurants cost only $6.

    The value propositions of Ritual — order ahead, skip the line, earn rewards — seemed to fall in some awkward middle ground of food apps that didn't seem all too compelling for me.

    Nonetheless, I was curious to see why so many techies around me seemed to be loving it.

    Here's what I found:

    Ritual's main selling point is saving time by ordering ahead and skipping the line. With each purchase, you also earn Ritual rewards.

    Near Business Insider's San Francisco office in the Financial District, there are a ton of options. There are at least 20 restaurants on Ritual within one city block.

    For the entire week using Ritual, I did not travel more than a block and a half. My average commute time was about two minutes.

    You can also browse nearby restaurants in this photo view.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Echo, Kitchen

    I've owned an Amazon Echo since December 2015. For almost three years, that little black smart speaker has changed the way I live in my apartment.

    But while the Echo has tons of features and skills for all types of needs and situations, I'd argue that Amazon's line of smart speakers are actually best used in the kitchen.

    Whether you treat meals like business or you love cooking, here are five ways the Amazon Echo can make cooking better, easier, and more fun:

    1. Amazon Echo can actually suggest recipes! Just say "What should I cook tonight?" or "What should I make with [insert your favorite foods here]?

    If I say "What should I cook tonight?", Echo will start listing off names of dishes you can make. You can say "learn more" to get the full recipe, or say "next" to get another suggestion of what to cook.

    In the past, Alexa has recommended all sorts of interesting dishes, including caramel corn, ham and potato soup, Dad's leftover turkey pot pie, sugarcoated pecans, scones, and more.

    But if you have specific ingredients you want to cook with — like chicken, or potatoes — Alexa can offer specific "top" recipes with those ingredients. And you can also ask to get recipes that use multiple ingredients: If you want to cook with both chicken and ground beef, for example, just say, "Alexa, what should I cook with chicken and ground beef?" and your Echo might recommend a recipe for an Italian wedding soup.

    2. Setting multiple timers and forgetting about them is the best.

    If you're ever wondering how much time you have left, just say "Alexa, how much time is left on my timers?" and it will tell you the time that's left on all your various timers.

    What makes setting timers superior on the Echo is that you can name them, which is incredibly helpful when you're multitasking — and in the kitchen, that's often the case.

    For example, you can set different timers for foods that are cooking at different speeds: Just say "Alexa, set a broccoli timer for 10 minutes" and "Alexa, set a chicken timer for 25 minutes." When those timers go off, Alexa will say "your chicken timer is done" and "your broccoli timer is done." Being able to set and name your timers, all hands-free, makes it much easier to keep track of everything you're cooking.

    3. Amazon Echo can also manage your shopping list.

    Did you just run out of garlic? Maybe you need more butter? Just say, "Alexa, add [insert food here] to the shopping list" and Echo will add that item to your shopping list, which you can access in the Alexa app on your phone.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

    Starting from the humble days of "Pong" and "Space Invaders," video games have grown into a multi-billion-dollar industry, with single games garnering hundreds of millions of sales.

    As the audience for video games has grown there have been major shifts in the mainstream market; only a few large publishers and popular franchises have earned permanent footholds in the list of best-sellers.

    A video game industry analyst from the NPD group recently released a list of the top-selling game of each year dating back to 1995, including physical and digital copies. While some games like "Tetris" and "Minecraft" have each sold more than 100 million copies over time, the year-by-year list reflects the changing interests of gamers as time has progressed.

    SEE ALSO: The top 3 best-selling games of all time are a surprising group of games that have all sold over 100 million copies apiece

    1995 - "Mortal Kombat III"

    The original "Mortal Kombat" games were originally arcade hits, boosted by the game's penchant for gratuitous violence and the early use of motion-capture technology. The colorful characters of "Mortal Kombat 3" are played by live actors and players can fight and tear each other apart in a variety of ways. The violence gave the game plenty of critics, but also led to plenty of extra attention.

    1996 - "Super Mario 64" (Nintendo 64)

    As a launch title, "Super Mario 64" kicked off multiple years of dominance for the Nintendo 64 console. The game takes full advantage of the console's 64-bit processor, creating explorable 3D environments that were unmatched at the time. "Super Mario 64" established many of the gameplay mechanics that still define 3D platformers today and remains a fan-favorite on YouTube and Twitch.

    1997 - "Mario Kart 64" (Nintendo 64)

    This may not come as a surprise, but "Mario Kart" is one of the Nintendo's best-selling series — across all consoles. "Mario Kart 64" introduced four-player split-screen multiplayer alongside memorable race tracks, and bumping music, making it a must-buy on the Nintendo 64.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Red Dead Redemption 2

    The Game Awards has revealed this year's batch nominees — and it will let fans vote to decide the winners across more than 20 categories.

    Fans can vote now for their picks at, and via Twitter direct message, Facebook Messenger, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and the official The Game Awards Discord server.

    Rockstar Games' "Red Dead Redemption 2" and Sony's "God of War" lead the pack with eight nominations each, including "Game of the Year" and "Best Narrative." Other Game of the Year contenders include Marvel’s Spider-Man (7 nominations), "Assassin’s Creed Odyssey" ( 4 nominations) and the indie game hit "Celeste" (4 nominations). Categories like Best Independent Game, Best Student Game and Best VR/AR Game also make space for some lesser- known titles to shine.

    The Game Awards will name the winners and celebrate the nominees on Thursday, December 6 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. The awards show will be streamed at 9 p.m. EST, 6 p.m. PST on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and several other streaming platforms.

    First established in 2014, The Game Awards advisory board includes executives from a dozen major gaming companies, including Xbox, Nintendo, Sony Interactive Entertainment, Valve, and Tencent.

    Here's the list of nominees:

    SEE ALSO: Here are the 16 biggest video games launching this holiday, from an all-new ‘Fallout’ to the hotly-anticipated ‘Red Dead Redemption 2'

    Game of the Year

    "Assassin’s Creed Odyssey" (Ubisoft Quebec / Ubisoft)

    "Celeste "(Matt Makes Games)

    "God of War (Sony Santa Monica/SIE)

    "Marvel’s Spider-Man" (Insomniac Games / SIE)

    "Monster Hunter: World" (Capcom)

    "Red Dead Redemption 2" (Rockstar Games)

    Best Ongoing Game

    "Destiny 2" (Bungie / Activision)

    "Fortnite" (Epic Games)

    "No Man’s Sky" (Hello Games)

    "Overwatch" (Blizzard)

    "Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege" (Ubisoft Montreal / Ubisoft)

    Best Game Direction

    "A Way Out" (Hazelight Studios / EA)

    "Detroit: Become Human" (Quantic Dream / SIE)

    "God of War" (Sony Santa Monica / SIE)

    "Marvel’s Spider-Man" (Insomniac Games / SIE)

    "Red Dead Redemption 2" (Rockstar Games)

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    nsa building

    Sure, between the spying on millions of Americans and the sitting on critical security vulnerabilities for years, the National Security Agency (NSA) has a pretty bad reputation.

    But have you heard about its brain-teasers?

    The US spy agency employs some of America's best and brightest as spooks and code-breakers, so it's no surprise that its employees might have an interest in riddles and puzzles.

    Every month, the NSA publishes on its website a brain-teaser written by an employee that members of the public can try their hand at. 

    One month it's a maths challenge created by an applied research mathematician; the next it's a logic puzzle by a systems engineer. They're all published in what the NSA calls its "Puzzle Periodical."

    "Intelligence. It's the ability to think abstractly. Challenge the unknown. Solve the impossible. NSA employees work on some of the world's most demanding and exhilarating high-tech engineering challenges. Applying complex algorithms and expressing difficult cryptographic problems in terms of mathematics is part of the work NSA employees do every day," the NSA says on its website. 

    We've rounded up a six of the most interesting brain-teasers below. So take a read, and see if you can out-smart the NSA's most fiendish riddlers!

    Here's a relatively easy one to start off with, from July 2016:

    Submitted by Sean A., NSA Applied Mathematician

    On a rainy summer day, brothers Dylan and Austin spend the day playing games and competing for prizes as their grandfather watches nearby. After winning two chess matches, three straight hands of poker and five rounds of ping-pong, Austin decides to challenge his brother, Dylan, to a final winner-take-all competition. Dylan clears the kitchen table and Austin grabs an old coffee can of quarters that their dad keeps on the counter.

    The game seems simple as explained by Austin. The brothers take turns placing a quarter flatly on the top of the square kitchen table. Whoever is the first one to not find a space on his turn loses. The loser has to give his brother tonight’s dessert. Right before the game begins, Austin arrogantly asks Dylan, “Do you want to go first or second?”

    Dylan turns to his grandfather for advice. The grandfather knows that Dylan is tired of losing every game to his brother. What does he whisper to Dylan?

    And here's the solution:

    Dylan should go first. By doing this, Dylan can guarantee a win by playing to a deliberate strategy. On his first turn, he can place a quarter right on the center of the table. Because the table is symmetric, whenever Austin places a quarter on the table, Dylan simply "mirrors" his brother’s placement around the center quarter when it is his turn. For example, if Austin places a quarter near a corner of the table, Dylan can place one on the opposite corner. This strategy ensures that even when Austin finds an open space, so can Dylan. As a result, Dylan gains victory, since Austin will run out of free space first!

    This one, from June 2016, requires a bit more math.

    Submitted by Robert B., NSA Applied Mathematician

    Following their latest trip, the 13 pirates of the ship, SIGINTIA, gather at their favorite tavern to discuss how to divvy up their plunder of gold coins. After much debate, Captain Code Breaker says, “Argggg, it must be evenly distributed amongst all of us. Argggg.” Hence, the captain begins to pass out the coins one by one as each pirate anxiously awaits her reward. However, when the captain gets close to the end of the pile, she realizes there are three extra coins.

    After a brief silence, one of the pirates says, “I deserve an extra coin because I loaded the ship while the rest of you slept.” Another pirate states, “Well, I should have an extra coin because I did all the cooking.” Eventually, a brawl ensues over who should get the remaining three coins. The tavern keeper, annoyed by the chaos, kicks out a pirate who has broken a table and who is forced to return her coins. Then the tavern owner yells, “Keep the peace or all of you must go!”

    The pirates return to their seats and the captain, left with only 12 total pirates, continues to distribute the coins - “one for you,” “one for you.” Now, as the pile is almost depleted, she realizes that there are five extra coins. Immediately, the pirates again argue over the five extra coins. The captain, fearing that they will be kicked out, grabs the angriest pirate and ushers her out of the tavern with no compensation. With only 11 pirates left, she resumes distribution. As the pile nears depletion, she sees that there won’t be any extra coins. The captain breathes a sigh of relief. No arguments occur and everyone goes to bed in peace.

    If there were less than 1,000 coins, how many did the pirates have to divvy up?

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Amazon Kindle Paperwhite

    At a surface level, it's a little hard to understand why anyone would want to buy the new Kindle Paperwhite, the latest e-reader from Amazon. 

    The design doesn't look all that different from previous models — although this one is thinner, lighter, and waterproof —  and there are so many easier and more convenient ways to read electronically these days, most notably using the Kindle app for your smartphone.

    In 2018, is there really a need for an extra piece of hardware just for reading? Especially one that costs $130? 

    Somehow, the answer is yes. 

    Hear me out. 

    SEE ALSO: Google's new $150 Home Hub does a lot of things you probably don't need it to — but it has one feature that automatically makes the price tag worth it

    Take a look at the new Kindle Paperwhite. Not very exciting, right?

    This newest Kindle Paperwhite looks almost exactly like the first one, which came out in 2012. There were updates to the Paperwhite that came out in 2013 and 2015, and those looked about the same, too. That's a 6-year-old design — can you imagine if the iPhone still looked like it did in 2012?

    The Paperwhite has thick bezels, or outer edges, that surround a 6-inch E Ink display. It's 8.18 mm thick and weighs 182 grams, which Amazon describes as being less than half the weight of most paperback books. I can confirm: it's thin and light, even when it's inside the premium-feeling leather case Amazon sells to go with it.

    At first, it was difficult for me to understand why the Paperwhite's design was so uninspired, and so similar to every Paperwhite that came before it. In an era when tech companies are trying to out-do each other with innovative, stand-out design, why was the Paperwhite so dated? 

    And then I realized that the answer is two-fold. On one hand, Amazon has zero reason to change the design. Who is it competing with? The Kindle has single-handedly dominated the e-reader market.

    On the other hand, even if Amazon did have competition, would it really be a good thing to change the design? Shrinking the bezels down to look like a modern smartphone or tablet would make it harder to use. What would people hold on to if the device was all screen? 

    This is a prime example of a company realizing that if it's not broken, don't fix it. 

    There are two new features that are worth noting: the Paperwhite is now waterproof, and it has more storage.

    Amazon made two key changes to the Paperwhite that do bring it to the present: it's waterproof, and it has more storage. 

    The waterproofing opens up way more possibilities for the device. Amazon says your Kindle will survive up to two meters of fresh water for up to 60 minutes. Now, you can read in the bathtub or poolside without worrying about your Kindle. You can carry it around when it's raining without being nervous that it's going to get drenched and ruined. It's not a life-changing feature by any means, but it's one less thing to worry about. 

    The other change is on-device storage, which Amazon increased by a lot on the new Paperwhite. You can now buy the device with 8 GB of storage or 32 GB of storage. The latter should be more than enough space for all your ebooks (for comparison's sake, these are the same storage options as Amazon's high-end Kindle Oasis, which costs almost twice as much). 

    But the major selling point of the Kindle Paperwhite really comes down to two things. One is battery life.

    Amazon hasn't given an exact number for how long the battery lasts on the new Paperwhite, but says it's measured "in weeks, not days."

    In my use of the device, that's correct — I've been using it for 10 days, and the battery is only down to 57%. 

    Battery life is one of the key reasons to consider the Paperwhite over reading on an iPad or just using your phone, because you'll rarely have to think about charging this thing. In an era when most of us have two or three devices that need to be charged every day, it's refreshing to have something you can toss in your bag or leave on your nightstand that's ready and waiting anytime you want to use it. 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    woman laptop computer work tech

    • Amazon announced it's splitting its second headquarters between Long Island City, a neighborhood of Queens, New York, and the Crystal City area of Arlington, Virginia. 
    • The megacompany said it will bring more than 25,000 high-paying jobs to each city.
    • Business Insider looked at some of the high-paying roles at Amazon's current Seattle headquarters to get a sense of what jobs could come to its second headquarters.


    Amazon has at last announced its HQ2 picks: Long Island City, a neighborhood of Queens, New York, and the Crystal City area of Arlington, Virginia.

    Amazon HQ2 will likely fundamentally change those two cities. Critics have predicted traffic snarls, rising rent prices, and gentrification, while proponents are expecting a surge of jobs and economic opportunities.

    Indeed, Amazon said the HQ2s will bring 25,000 jobs to each city.

    To figure out what those jobs are, we took a closer look at Amazon's first headquarters in Seattle, since it stands to reason that many jobs commonly found at Amazon's current headquarters would be in demand once a second headquarters is established.

    Business Insider sifted through the 16,300 Seattle-based occupations and salaries Amazon employees shared on Glassdoor to find jobs that earn more than $90,000 a year and received the most reviews from Seattle-based Amazon employees. We also included the job descriptions for each role, as described in recent Amazon job postings. 

    Based on that analysis, here's a look at some of the most lucrative jobs Amazon HQ2 might bring to its future home city:

    SEE ALSO: A head recruiter at Amazon says the biggest mistake people make on their résumés comes down to their job title

    DON'T MISS: Amazon is launching a new delivery program and hiring thousands of drivers, with a warning against 'peeing in bottles'

    Data engineer

    Data engineers construct and maintain data pipelines and systems.

    Average annual salary, according to 68 Glassdoor reviews: $101,057

    Operations manager

    Operations managers oversee teams that handle inventory management, purchases, and work flow. 

    Median annual salary, according to 41 Glassdoor reviews: $106,000

    Business intelligence engineer

    Business intelligence engineers work with data to ensure more efficiency and better market understanding.

    Average annual salary, according to 40 Glassdoor reviews: $108,109

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Spooky titles are still ruling Netflix, with "Stranger Things" in high demand and its "Sabrina" reboot gaining steam.

    Every week, Parrot Analytics provides Business Insider with a list of the five most "in-demand" TV shows on streaming services. (The data is based on "demand expressions," the globally standardized TV demand measurement unit from Parrot Analytics. Audience demand reflects the desire, engagement, and viewership weighted by importance, so a stream or download is a higher expression of demand than a "like" or comment on social media.)

    READ MORE: The Satanic Temple is suing Netflix for $50 million, alleging 'Chilling Adventures of Sabrina' copies its statue of a goat-headed deity

    This week's most in-demand shows include Netflix's "Chilling Adventures of Sabrina," which stayed at the top since last week; Marvel's "Daredevil"; and a new entry, the final season of "House of Cards."

    Below are this week's five most popular shows on Netflix and other streaming services:

    SEE ALSO: Inside the abandoned Staten Island prison that has emerged as a prime location for movies and TV shows, including Netflix's 'Daredevil' and 'Orange Is the New Black'

    5. "The Haunting of Hill House" (Netflix)

    Average demand expressions: 25,288,899

    Description: "Flashing between past and present, a fractured family confronts haunting memories of their old home and the terrifying events that drove them from it."

    Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 1): 91%

    What critics said: "'The Haunting of Hill House' is superlative in many regards. It's a masterful, restrained work of horror fiction."— Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic

    Season 1 premiered on Netflix October 12.

    4. "House of Cards" (Netflix)

    Average demand expressions: 26,459,358 

    Description:"With Frank out of the picture, Claire Underwood steps fully into her own as the first woman president."

    Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 6): 72%

    What critics said:"Wright is truly stunning on the final season, and gives every second on screen her all in a way that suggests she's always known this should've been her show."— Carrie Wittmer, Business Insider

    Season 6 premiered on Netflix November 2.


    3. "Marvel's Daredevil" (Netflix)

    Average demand expressions: 36,566,143

    Description: "Blinded as a young boy, Matt Murdock fights injustice by day as a lawyer and by night as the Super Hero Daredevil in Hell's Kitchen, New York City."

    Rotten Tomatoes critic score (Season 3): 93%

    What critics said: "The show may never have the spark it did in its earliest days, but it did help elevate the way stories of superheroes can be told on television. There's still progress to be made, but 'Daredevil' feels like it's on the right track."— Liz Shannon Miller, Indiewire

    Season 3 premiered on Netflix October 19.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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