Waste the rest of your day with Facebook Messenger’s hidden basketball game

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Looks like someone in the Facebook team has caught the March Madness fever; in a small update to the Messenger app, typing in the basketball emoji can enable a secret mini-game between you and a friend. To start, just locate the basketball emoji (copy and paste ????, if you can’t find it in your growing emoji list), send it to a friend and click it to start the game. You’ll get a basketball placed in various locations on your screen, and all you have to do just swipe up toss the ball into the hoop. The goal is to challenge your friend to…

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The sale of Intel’s VC unit may cause more markdowns in values of startups

Shadows are cast near the Intel logo at the 2015 Computex exhibition in Taipei, Taiwan, June 3, 2015. Computex, the world's second largest computer show, runs from June 2 to 6.

Intel is shopping around its in-house venture-capital business,according to a Bloomberg report.

The move to sell part of Intel Capital, which comes two months after the retirement of the group’s president, is an abrupt change of plans at the world’s largest chip maker. Intel has been one of the most aggressive corporate investors in up-and-coming startups for the past 25 years.

The move could cause reverberations across the tech landscape that extend far beyond Intel.

It would be selling its investments in startup companies. In 2015 alone, Intel Capital invested $ 514 million in 143 companies focused on everything from security software to wearable devices.

Intel is obviously aware of the markdowns in valuations that Fidelity and other big mutual funds have recently made to their tech-startup holdings. Those markdowns may have convinced Intel that now is a good time to cash out some of its own tech-startup investments.

Mark to market

By selling its portfolio, Intel will essentially be giving the market an opportunity to affix a new, and very public, price onto dozens of startups in its portfolio.

Unlike the Fidelity write-downs, which are calculated through a process that’s as much art as it is science, a sale of assets on the open market leaves no room for debate. The price paid is the price paid.

If the Intel Capital assets sell at a discount to what Intel paid for them, that resets the value of the equity that other investors have in those same startups. And that price reset could extend beyond just Intel’s portfolio companies, if investors decide to apply the same multiples to other startups that are in similar businesses or have similar products.

Sure, sales of private-company investments happen quietly all the time in the secondary markets, as limited partners in venture funds look to get liquidity. But typically these sales are much smaller, and are not nearly as public as the Intel Capital assets on the auction block, which Bloomberg pegged at $ 1 billion.

It’s also possible that Intel Capital has some winning investments in its portfolio, and that it will sell the overall portfolio at a premium. In that case, the sale could help buoy the startup market, at least for some companies.

But would Intel be so eager to part with its startup investments if it were doing so well? The answer to that question will have big implications across Silicon Valley’s tech startups over the coming months.

This post appeared first on Business Insider.

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French aviator plans to fly from Paris to New York in a biofuel plane

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In the spirit of Charles Lindbergh, a French research company hopes to complete the first carbon-free trans-Atlantic flight later this year.

The Eraole, an electric biofuel plane developed by Laboratoire Océan Vital, will take flight from New York to Paris in June: The company says the plane will produce zero carbon emissions. If successful, the plane could have lasting impacts in the field of environmentally-friendly flight.

Laboratoire Océan Vital was founded by Raphaël Dinelli, a pilot and adventurer, who will pilot the plane on its transatlantic journey. Read more…

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