Plan Your Free Online Education at Lifehacker U: Summer Semester 2015

Your education doesn’t have to stop once you leave school. We’ve put together a curriculum of some of the best free online classes available on the web this summer for the latest term of Lifehacker U, our regularly-updating guide to improving your life with free, online college-level classes. Let’s get started. » 5/13/15 1:12pm 5/13/15 1:12pm

Appeals Court Rules That Your Electronics Can Stay Turned On In Flight

Back in 2013, the FAA saw sense, and ruled that passengers can use their electronic fondleslabs during takeoff and landing. And, shortly after, the Association of Flight Attendants sued, claiming the FAA had overstepped its bounds. An appeals court just ruled against the AFA, meaning takeoff Candy Crush is here to… » 5/10/15 9:06pm 5/10/15 9:06pm

Court Says Warrantless Cell Phone Tracking Is A-Okay

Do you like privacy? You’re going to hate this news. A federal court just ruled that law enforcement doesn’t need a warrant to obtain cell tower location data. This is just a year after the same federal court ruled that it did need a warrant, a move some called the biggest privacy wins in recent memory. Now it is a… » 5/05/15 4:50pm 5/05/15 4:50pm

Expert in Supreme Court Lethal Injection Case Did Research on Drugs.com

Tomorrow, when the Supreme Court hears oral arguments in the highest-profile death penalty challenge in seven years, the justices will begin ruling on this question: Does Oklahoma’s use of the common surgical sedative midazolam fail to make prisoners unconscious during lethal injections, thus violating the Eighth… » 4/28/15 4:10pm 4/28/15 4:10pm

Google Attempts to Fight Patent Trolls with a Pretty Dubious Strategy

Google’s legal team has just announced that they’ll be buying as many patents as possible in order to “remove friction from the patent market” and defeat patent trolls, companies that buy patents just to sue people on bogus charges of infringement. But there’s a big problem with this strategy. » 4/27/15 12:55pm 4/27/15 12:55pm

Google vs. the EU: A Fight for the Right to Screw With Search Results

Google is the most popular search engine in the world, to the point where I feel dumb typing “Google is the most popular search engine in the world” because holy shit, you already know. But ubiquity is not synonymous with benevolence. The EU’s new lawsuit against the search giant brings up larger issues. » 4/16/15 6:05pm 4/16/15 6:05pm

Censorship Order That Threatened Websites and Message Boards Overturned

Our right to express opinions online—for instance, to criticize copyright trolls and their demands for money in hopes of scaring them away—are protected by the First Amendment. The Georgia Supreme Court correctly underscored these protections in a ruling late last week about the state’s anti-stalking law. The panel… » 4/03/15 3:34am 4/03/15 3:34am

All the Dreamy Drone Businesses the FAA's Proposed Rules Would Kill

There are plenty of very good, fun, and helpful things that drones can do—things like monitoring crops and delivering beer and saving lives. Unfortunately, over the weekend, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released the first draft of its rules for commercial drones, and guess what? The rules would make a… » 2/17/15 10:45am 2/17/15 10:45am

How the Silk Road Trial Could Lead to a Dangerous Legal Precedent

The Silk Road trial is over. A jury found Ross Ulbricht guilty on all seven charges, including money laundering, drug trafficking, and the "kingpin" charge. That's not just bad news for Ulbricht, who faces life in prison. His trial could help establish a dangerous precedent, which could allow law enforcement to… » 2/06/15 2:55pm 2/06/15 2:55pm