Netflix’s answer to the X-Men just became really, really good – CNET


The Umbrella Academy returns Friday.


Heading into tricky second season territory, Netflix's The Umbrella Academy builds from a solid base. Season 1 saw the Hargreeves superhero family tackle the apocalypse with slow-mo shoot 'em ups, glam-rock stompers and an X-Men ensemble dynamic.

Yet while the defined characters grew on you, and everything looked cinematic and glossy, a tonal struggle held the show back: Claggy dialogue and dour family drama often clashed with the fun. Fight scenes set to wacky novelty songs like Istanbul (Not Constantinople) made stabbed eyes disturbingly cheery for its TV-14 audience.

Impressively, showrunner Steve Blackman, adapting Gerard Way's comic (Way is also the lead singer of My Chemical Romance), seems to have listened to every ounce of last season's feedback.

Season 2 explodes the best parts of the show's wacky time travel and family dysfunction onto a lighter, richer '60s setting. While its take on historical events and social issues doesn't reach the levels of boldness hit by HBO's Watchmen, it's still affecting, thanks to strong new characters who draw even more out of the radiant regular cast.

Upping the pace too, we drop in with the Hargreeves moments after the end of season 1, when they escape Earth's destruction in 2019 thanks to the time-traveling abilities of Five (Aidan Gallagher).

But the adopted siblings' paths splinter across Dallas, Texas, in the early '60s. Against a backdrop of US-Soviet conflict, with John F. Kennedy's assassination looming, Five discovers he has 10 days to gather the family and prevent events that lead to the world's nuclear destruction.

While this Doomsday scenario and other season 1 plot beats echo throughout, season 2 has a self-awareness ensuring we go to unexpected places. When Luther (Tom Hopper) teeters on villainizing Vanya (Ellen Page), for example, we side-step into more mature territory, reflecting growth in the characters as well as the show.


Klaus and his cult.


While Luther's underground-fighter storyline isn't as exciting as the others, we don't stick with him for long. Skipping chunks of time between the characters landing in the past and creating new lives, we see the necessary plot details through flashbacks wisely interspersed across the 10 episodes.

Diego (David Castañeda), who's now embracing his heroic side, meets the unpredictable Lila (Ritu Arya). Klaus (Robert Sheehan), unsurprisingly, becomes a Jesus-type leader of a cult. Ghost Ben (Justin H. Min), who still has unfinished business, continues to bicker with Klaus in scenes that produce most of the best lines. But Klaus goes to difficult places too, meeting his Vietnam War love Dave, who doesn't yet know he's gay.

Alison (Emmy Raver-Lampman), who's married to equal rights activist Raymond Chestnut (Yusuf Gatewood), wrestles with how much to use her mind-control powers in the midst of racial tensions. Her difficult experiences make one of the darker threads, touching on the upsetting "blacks only" and "whites only" segregation of places like hair salons.


Marin Ireland and Ellen Page as Sissy and Vanya.


Vanya's relationship with a Texan mom is the most developed of the storylines and glows at the heart of the show. Working as a nanny on a farm, she looks after Sissy's disabled son Harlem, while piecing together what she remembers of season 1's apocalypse and her role in it. Marin Ireland as Sissy will blow you away: Her grounded and subtle performance could slot into a traumatic Stephen King family drama. Handled with sensitivity and grace, Vanya's romance gives her rare confidence and happy moments that it feels like she's earned.

You'll still find casual violence in the mix, but for the most part it's noticeably toned down. A trio of Swedish albino milkmen assassins (yep, don't ask) provide the gunfire soundtrack to the plentiful action scenes, with better, emotionally driven song choices, including Adele and Billie Eilish covers, along with '60s soft-rock.


Like its predecessor, season 2 also has a great dance scene.


Though it does some time-travel paradox fire-stamping, The Umbrella Academy always lets its characters steer the ship. The heavier material doesn't go to radical places or try to make big statements, guided by the characters' decisions, feelings and powers. You want to see the dysfunctional family bond and support each other as they reluctantly figure out how to save the day.

Flamboyant, entertaining and enriched by a remarkable cast, season 2 of The Umbrella Academy tweaks everything it needed to to align its splashy sense of fun with real moments.

Season 2 of The Umbrella Academy drops on Netflix on Friday.

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Pentagon’s UFO program will make some findings on unexplained objects public – CNET


An unidentified flying object captured by the US Navy in the "gimbal" video. 

Department of Defense

The Pentagon's program to identify and explain unidentified flying objects, UFOs, is now being coordinated by the Office of Naval Intelligence and may reveal some findings about mysterious, unexplained aerial phenomena to the public, according to a report by the New York Times on Thursday.

Buried in a Senate Committee on Intelligence report submitted by Marco Rubio on July 17 is a section on "Advanced Aerial Threats" which discusses the efforts of the "Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon Task Force." 

The report suggests the task force has been established to "standardize collection and reporting on unidentified aerial phenomena," the links they may have to foreign governments and the threat they pose to the US military. The Times says Pentagon officials will not discuss the program. 

The Committee has directed the task force to prepare a report on "unidentified aerial phenomena (also known as ''anomalous aerial vehicles''), including observed airborne objects that have not been identified" within 180 days of enactment of the intelligence authorization act, which governs how intelligence is reported to Congress. 

The New York Times report also highlights claims by Eric W. Davis, an astrophysicist who consulted with an earlier version of the Pentagon's UFO program, that unexplained materials had been retrieved that could not be made by human beings or on Earth.

In April, the Pentagon released footage from three classified encounters with UFOs filmed by the US Navy. The Navy has not yet provided explanations for the aerial objects. That doesn't mean we are staring down aliens, either. When Mick West, who operates the debunking website Metabunk, took a look at one of the unexplained objects in the videos back in 2018, he hypothesized it was likely a balloon or a bird.

Much less exciting (or worrying).

You can check the footage out for yourself and decide.

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Self-replicating Chernobyl mold could protect the ISS from space radiation – CNET


School No. 3 in Pripyat, the atomic city abandoned after the Chernobyl explosion. This photo was taken 30 years after the disaster, in 2016.

Sean Gallup/Getty

NASA is planning to return to the moon in 2024 and, potentially, establish a permanent human presence there by the end of the decade. There are still a lot of logistical hurdles to jump over, but there's an even bigger, more human issue: Space wants to kill you.

Damaging space radiation poses a real threat to astronaut health. If humans are going to spend extended time in space -- and head to planets like Mars or beyond -- we'll need to protect ourselves from it. The Earth's magnetic field and atmosphere shield us from radiation while we're down here, but as we head out into the cosmos, our safety blanket disappears. Astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) receive more than 20 times the normal amount of radiation than Earthlings receive in a year.

To protect astronauts, scientists have been studying an unusually hardy organism, discovered in one of the most radioactive places on the planet: Chernobyl.

The explosion that blew a hole in the No. 4 reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in 1986 was devastating. In some parts of the plant, the level of radiation spiked so high that exposure would kill a human in about 60 seconds. But several species of fungi have been discovered in the reactor. And they're thriving, "feeding" on the extreme levels of radiation.

A new study, yet to undergo peer review, was published on the pre-print repository bioRxiv on July 17 and examines one of these species, Cladosporium sphaerospermum. It suggests the fungi could be used as a self-healing, self-replicating shield to protect astronauts in deep space. Specialist science publication New Scientist reported on the findings on July 24.

Researchers placed the fungi aboard the ISS for 30 days and analyzed its ability to block radiation. Fungi, like C. sphaerospermum, contain a pigment known as melanin, which can absorb radiation and turn it into energy.

The researchers set up a petri dish with two sides. On one side, a control containing no fungi, on the other, C. sphaerospermum. Underneath the petri dish was a radiation detector. For 30 days, the detectors measured radiation every 110 seconds. The proof-of-concept study showed that the fungi was able to adapt to microgravity and thrive on radiation. It was able to block some of the incoming radiation, decreasing the levels by almost 2%.

One of the major advantages, the researchers write, is the fungi self-replicates from microscopic amounts. You would only need to send a small amount to orbit, give it some nutrients and let it replicate, forming a biological radiation shield. With some tweaking, the fungi could be used to shield bases on the moon or Mars.

It's a long while until we put boots on the red planet, but the groundwork is being laid now. July has been a big month for Mars exploration. A fleet of robotic explorers are currently en route to the planet -- and NASA's Perseverance rover is set to follow on July 30. If you're keen to see that launch, we've got a big guide ready for your eyeballs. And don't forget -- the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule is coming back to Earth from the ISS on Aug. 2.

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Rick and Morty drops new mini episode set in Tokyo – CNET


In anime style.

Adult Swim

Rick and Morty's mini episodes are turning into a series of their own, showcasing different art styles and direction and filling the void between seasons. The latest comes from Tower of God anime director Takashi Sano and sends Rick and Morty on an adventure in beautiful Tokyo.

Titled Rick and Morty vs. Genocider, the episode deals with time paradoxes. Complex, surprisingly heartwarming and, yep, weird, this is another notch in the belt for the shorts. The first, a samurai episode in March, took a year to put together -- worth it.

Rick and Morty finished airing its fourth season at the end of May. During an Adult Swim Twitch event timed with San Diego Comic-Con, co-creator Dan Harmon dropped a clip of animated storyboards from the upcoming fifth season.

"We're basically done writing it; the only exception is I get on these Zoom edit sessions where we're kind of finalizing the finale of season 5," Harmon said. "It's a crazy situation to be in because this show has notoriously kept everyone behind schedule."

For everything else we know about season 5, head here.

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2020 Emmy nomination predictions: Tiger King, Picard or Schitt’s Creek? – CNET

Schitt's Creek came to an end in 2020, and the Emmys are sure to give it the recognition it deserves.


From Tiger King to WatchmenThe Last Dance to Schitt's Creek, TV has been welcome company in these troubled, insular times. And the 2020 Emmy Awards is getting ready to recognize the shows that have glued us to our screens while we're all stuck inside.

Every year the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences rewards the best drama, comedy and documentary on the small screen. 2020 marks the 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards, covering shows broadcast between June 2019 and the end of May 2020. That includes stuff we've enjoyed during lockdown and shows from before the coronavirus pandemic times -- if you can remember such a thing. 

Nominations come out Tuesday, and a bunch of heavyweight shows are in the running once again, like Better Call Saul, The Handmaid's Tale, Westworld, Big Little Lies and The Crown. The big question is whether newcomers can grab their sparkle. In particular, this past year saw new streaming services muscling into the TV world, and the likes of Apple TV Plus, HBO Max and Quibi will be keen to steal the thunder of established televisual giants Netflix and HBO. Here's my list of acclaimed and interesting shows from the past year that stand a good chance of taking home a trophy. Leave a comment to let me know your favorite and tell me any I've missed... 

Reese Witherspoon produced this year's acclaimed shows including The Morning Show, Truth Be Told and Little Fires Everywhere -- in which she also found time to deliver a potentially award-worthy acting performance. She also produced Big Little Lies, which scored big at last year's Emmys. The categories for lead and supporting access might as well just list the cast of season 2, it's so full of women on top of their game: Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern and Meryl Streep could all realistically prepare acceptance speeches.


Master of strange sci-fi Alex Garland developed this slow-burning Hulu miniseries starring Nick Offerman. It's a weird and thought-provoking show that could win a nod for writing.

Jim Parsons well and truly left The Big Bang Theory behind playing an acidic agent in Ryan Murphy's lavish take on Hollywood history. The Emmys could say hooray for Hollywood in acting and writing categories.

It's a grim watch, but you know this much is true: Mark Ruffalo is twice as good as usual in a dual role playing troubled twins, which will surely earn him some acting kudos.


One interesting thing about The Last Dance, which tells the story of basketball legend Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls, is that it exemplifies media in the pandemic era. The sporting documentary was brought forward to fill a gap created by the cancellation of live sports, and benefited from the huge audience stuck at home looking for something to watch (and tweet about). But that's just detail: The Last Dance is a fascinating story well told, and along with the rest of ESPN's 30 for 30 series richly deserves recognition.

Amazon Studios

In previous years the Emmys have shown a lot of love for Amazon's comedy about a housewife who stands up to her family through stand-up comedy. Picture-perfect period design could well lead to a hatbox full of nominations for costumes, hair and makeup, not to mention acting and more.

Apple TV Plus is one of the newer streaming services looking to build its profile with some prestigious awardage. The super timely Morning Show is probably the top contender for the drama category, with Jennifer Aniston looking good for a nomination. Apple may also have its fingers crossed for its other shows Defending Jacob, Amazing Stories and See, while iconoclastic comedy Dickinson deserves praise too.

Informative and evocative, Mrs. America told the story of the fight for equal rights in 1970s America. Cate Blanchett and Margo Martindale are among the star-studded cast who could find themselves nominated in the actress categories.

Comedy legend Fred Willard sadly died this year, and may be recognized for his final roles in Modern Family and Netflix's Space Force. Modern Family may also be recognized for its climactic season.

It might seem like a million years ago, but Orange is the New Black's final season streamed on Netflix in June 2019, just sneaking into the eligibility window. As it bows out, the show may receive recognition for its groundbreaking success.

There's a lineup of heavyweights potentially vying for the comedy acting categories, including Eugene Levy, Ted Danson, Don Cheadle, Steve Carell and Larry David. But the old guard may pass the baton to Ramy Youssef, who already won a Golden Globe for his portrayal of a mixed-up Muslim millennial.


Originally a sleeper hit, this thoroughly good-hearted Canadian comedy told the story of a family that's broke but not broken. The emotional finale aired in April, surely making it a strong contender for the best comedy category. The cast has won a hatful of awards but no Emmys so far, but I'm expecting to see a lot of love for Catherine O'Hara, Annie Murphy, Eugene Levy and Dan Levy in the acting (and writing) categories. (Disclosure: CNET and Pop TV are a part of ViacomCBS).

Trae Patton

Patrick Stewart is back in the Captain's chair, delivering a stirring performance as an older, more troubled Jean-Luc Picard on streaming service CBS All Access (Disclosure: That service and CNET are owned by ViacomCBS). However, he faces stiff competition in the actor categories from the likes of Brian Cox, Billy Porter, Sterling K. Brown and Bob Odenkirk.

Hey all you cool cats and kittens, remember Tiger King? Netflix's stranger-than-fiction true crime documentary was the early hit of lockdown, recounting the feud between animal-loving oddballs Joe Exotic and Carole Baskin. The series captivated viewers, and will no doubt earn Netflix awards in the documentary category.


HBO's audacious and provocative adaptation of the iconic comic took the Watchmen story in bold new directions, addressing race in a way that proved to be extremely timely.

The short-form category could be huge for Quibi. The bite-size streaming service launched in 2020 with star-studded, big-money mini shows but struggled to persuade viewers to part with their cash when they could just keep watching YouTube for free. But there is some good stuff on there, including mystery drama When the Streetlights Go On and a range of kooky comedies like Dishmantled and Nikki Fre$h.

The Emmys ceremony

The Emmy nominations will be announced July 28. The winners will then be revealed live on Sunday Sept. 20 in a ceremony hosted by Jimmy Kimmel at LA's Microsoft Theater -- if the coronavirus situation allows, of course.

What TV shows have rocked your world this past year? Let us know in the comments.

Other potential contenders

  • Altered Carbon
  • Amazing Stories
  • Avenue 5
  • Bad Education
  • Better Things
  • Betty
  • Big Little Lies
  • Big Mouth
  • Black Mirror
  • Bob's Burgers
  • BoJack Horseman
  • Central Park
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm
  • Dead to Me
  • Doctor Who
  • Drunk History
  • Feel Good
  • Giri/Haji
  • Glow
  • The Good Place
  • The Great
  • The Handmaid's Tale
  • High Fidelity
  • Hightown
  • Hunters
  • I Am Not Okay With This
  • The Kominsky Method
  • Killing Eve
  • Little America
  • The Loudest Voice
  • Never Have I Ever
  • Normal People
  • Nora from Queens
  • Perry Mason
  • The Plot Against America
  • The Politician
  • Project Runway
  • Queer Eye
  • Quiz
  • Ramy
  • Rick & Morty
  • Run
  • RuPaul's Drag Race
  • Saturday Night Live
  • The Simpsons
  • Solar Opposites
  • South Park
  • The Stranger
  • Stranger Things
  • Tales from the Loop
  • This Is Us
  • Unbelievable
  • Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
  • Unorthodox

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Get a refurbished UE Boom 3 Bluetooth speaker for just $89 – CNET

Ultimate Ears

Ultimate Ears makes some of the best portable Bluetooth speakers around, and the Boom series is right at home outdoors thanks to a simple but rugged design and good battery life. The Boom 3 might be priced a little on the high side, but it's worth it. That's why I was excited to find that right now, you can snag a UE Boom 3 for just $89 at Back Market, which is 22% off the current list price of $150. (Back Market claims this is 57% off a list price of $210, but I can't imagine where that number comes from -- it has never listed for $210.)

This Boom 3 is refurbished, but is described at Back Market as "Mint," which is the site's highest condition level, with no scratches and have exteriors that look brand new. The reburbisher further notes that the speaker is "in excellent cosmetic condition. May show minimal to no signs of use. All devices have been tested and restored to full function, factory, standard condition." It also comes with a 12-month warranty and 30-day money-back guarantee.

If you've seen UE speakers, you probably know the standard cylindrical shape of the Boom series which enables a full 360-degree sound projection. The Boom 3 is wrapped in fabric and features a single control on top: the so-called Magic Button, which plays and pauses music as well as triggering up to four playlists. Just press to start playing even when the speaker is off, and perform a long press to advance to the next playlist you've stored via the Ultimate Ears app. 

Battery life is about 15 hours, and the IP67 rating means it can be submerged for 30 minutes without damage. You'd have to intentionally hold it underwater, though, because the Boom 3 conveniently floats.  

CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest promo codes from Best BuyWalmartAmazon and more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page.

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Get 30% off this already cheap little Bose competitor – CNET

The Tribit Storm Box Micro fits in most pockets.

David Carnoy/CNET

Over the years Tribit has made some of the better budget portable Bluetooth headphones and speakers, starting with its XFree Tune and XSound Go, respectively. The latter speaker is still around and delivers surprisingly good sound for less than $30. Now it's doing a budget version of Bose's excellent SoundLink Micro speaker. The new model is called the StormBox Micro and it's one of the best-sounding pocket-size speakers I've heard.

Usually, it sells for $56, but if you apply the code TBMIC30FCN at checkout from Amazon, the price drops to $39.19. That's a savings of almost $17 and the best deal we've seen on this speaker (it was previously on sale for $45).

You can read my full StormBox Micro review here, but the quick take is that like the Bose it has more bass and fuller sound than most tiny Bluetooth speakers. It's also fully waterproof (IP67 rating) and can deliver up to eight hours of battery life at moderate volume levels. While it doesn't seem as durable or as sleek-looking as the SoundLink Micro, it does seem well built and you can wirelessly link two together to create a stereo pair.

Read more: Best portable mini Bluetooth speakers for 2020

First published earlier this year. Updated with new deal details.

Now playing: Watch this: What you need to know about mini Bluetooth speakers


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Get the eMeet Luna Bluetooth speakerphone for just $70 – CNET

David Carnoy/CNET

Once you make more than a few conference calls from home, you start to appreciate just how mediocre your laptop's microphone and speaker really are. My advice: Get a speakerphone. You know, like the ones that pepper conference rooms back at the office. There are some value-priced gems out there. eMeet, for example, has a few really nice speakerphone models, and the new Luna is a versatile model that sounds good for $100. But right now you can practically steal it from Amazon. You can get the eMeet Luna for $70 when you clip the $20 coupon on the product page and enter eMeetLuna10 at checkout to snag an extra $10.

CNET's David Carnoy took a look at a slew of speakerphones recently and called the Luna one of the best models under $100. He especially liked the noise reduction -- it automatically minimizes sound caused by environmental distractions like clacking keyboards, squeaking chairs and humming air conditioners -- and the fact that you can daisy-chain multiple eMeet speakers if you need to spread the sound to other people across a large table.

But even if you're on your own, it has some great conveniences. You can let it automatically connect to your laptop via Bluetooth, for example, or just plug in via USB. Plus it has a 2,600-mAh battery that lasts for about two days at a time, and it conserves power by putting itself to sleep if you don't make any calls or play music through it for a while. 

This article was published earlier this week. 

CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest promo codes from Best BuyWalmartAmazon and more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page.

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The Sly Psychology Behind Magicians’ Card Tricks

Pick a card, any card. It’s a staple of traditional magic tricks. But if you choose the 3 of diamonds, chances are you may have been “primed” by the magician to pick that card without even being aware of it. That’s because certain subtle verbal and gestural cues can unconsciously influence decisionmaking, according to a recent paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).


This story originally appeared on Ars Technica, a trusted source for technology news, tech policy analysis, reviews, and more. Ars is owned by WIRED’s parent company, Condé Nast.

There is a certain degree of well-founded skepticism surrounding studies of visual or verbal priming. There was, for instance, a famous “experiment” in 1957 by a market researcher named James McDonald Vicary, involving subliminal advertising. Vicary claimed to have conducted an experiment in which some 45,000 people attending screenings of the film Picnic at a Fort Lee, New Jersey, theater were repeatedly shown brief ads (“Drink Coca-cola” or “Hungry? Eat popcorn”) lasting just 1/3,000th of a second during the film—thanks to a tachistoscope Vicary said he installed in the projection booth. He reported an 18.1 percent increase in sales of Coca-Cola and a startling 57.8 percent increase in popcorn sales as a result.

The concept of subliminal advertising subsequently spread like wildfire, featuring in a 1973 episode of Columbo and even prompting the CIA to issue a cautionary report. There was just one problem: Vicary was a fraud. Nobody was ever able to reproduce those results—including Vicary himself—and Vicary eventually admitted he had falsified his data, and the story had been a gimmick to prop up his struggling marketing business. It’s possible he never even conducted the original experiment.

While more recent, non-fraudulent studies have suggested that priming can influence people’s choices, those studies have limitations. For instance, the choices subjects can make are usually limited to two or three options, and the experiments are generally done in a tightly controlled laboratory setting, rather than a more natural real-world environment. But there is substantial anecdotal evidence that the forcing techniques used by magicians are effective; it just hadn’t been studied scientifically. And unlike typical free-choice paradigms tested in labs, such techniques are subtly integrated into performances.

Alice Pailhès, a psychologist at Goldsmiths University of London and coauthor of the PNAS paper, is well aware of the checkered history and long-standing difficulty in replicating social psychology experiments on priming effects. But she feels confident in the use of magicians’ techniques in her own work on how unconscious factors can influence choice, since they rely on tightly controlled scripts and actions, while still being embedded in a natural, conversational environment. She started implementing magic tricks while still a graduate student in France. “I love magic, and I quickly realized that magicians are the best to influence choices,” she told Ars.

Pailhès found inspiration for her most recent research in British illusionist Derren Brown. Brown uses mental priming and forcing techniques (among other tools) involving verbal and visual cues in his performances—prompting someone, for instance, to think of the 3 of diamonds card. (Apparently the 3 of diamonds is an unlikely card for people to randomly choose from a 52-card deck.)

Brown’s method involves asking an audience member to attempt to “mentally transmit” the image of a playing card, instructing the spectator to “make the color bright and vivid.” This should prompt the spectator to think of a red-suited card, as opposed to a black-suited one. Then Brown asks the audience member to imagine a screen, miming the shape of a diamond with his hands as he does so to prime the spectator to think of the suit of diamonds.

To prime the audience member to think of the number 3, Brown asks them to imagine the “little numbers down in the corner of the card and in the top.” As he does so, he rapidly draws 3s in the air, as if on an imaginary card, with his index finger. Finally, he asks the spectator to imagine the “things in the middle of the card, the boom, boom, boom, the suits,” while pointing to three imaginary symbols in the air. The entire priming exercise lasts just 15 seconds.

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12 Best Cheap Headphones and Earbuds for $100 or Less (2020)

Michael Calore oversees WIRED’s consumer products coverage in print and on the web, and is one of the hosts of WIRED’s weekly podcast, Gadget Lab. As a writer, he covers a range of topics including music, film, art, software, social media, and underground culture.
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