Why Sirius Black has a bigger role in the ‘Harry Potter’ books than the movies

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While the sheer length of the fourth and fifth Harry Potter books may have delighted wizarding fans who wanted more time in the magical world, the action-packed stories posed a serious challenge for filmmakers. To keep the movies to a reasonable length, some details (and characters) had to be cut. 

While you may have noticed the big ones — Sirius’ lack of screen time, or what seems like one year’s worth of classes transformed into a quick montage — there may be crucial changes you missed.  

Our CineFix series What’s The Difference takes you step-by-step and page-by-page through all the differences between your favorite movies and shows. Adaptations are a tricky game and something always gets changed, added or omitted in the process.  Read more…

More about Standalone Featured, Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix, Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire, Harry Potter Movies, and Harry Potter Books

Postmodern Jukebox softens up Justin Bieber and Major Lazer

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Who knew a banjo solo belongs in a Justin Bieber song? 

In their latest cover, Postmodern Jukebox put a bluegrass spin on Justin Bieber and Major Lazer’s hit song, “Cold Water.” 

Lead vocalist Robyn Adele Anderson, back-up singers Kenton Fen and Jessica Freedman lighten up the song with a sweet a cappella feel. 

“Cold Water” never felt so warm. 

More about Banjo, Bluegrass, Watercooler, Belieb, and Belieber

Mobileye kicks Tesla to the curb for ‘pushing the envelope in terms of safety’

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We now know why Mobileye severed ties with Tesla over the summer: It didn’t believe the company took safety seriously enough. 

Simply put, Tesla was “pushing the envelope in terms of safety,” the chairman of Mobileye, an Israel-based company that makes collision detection systems for dozens of automakers, said Wednesday.

“[Autopilot] is not designed to cover all possible crash situations in a safe manner,” Mobileye’s chief technology officer, Amnon Shash, told Reuters. He added, “No matter how you spin it, [Autopilot] is not designed for that. It is a driver assistance system and not a driverless system.” Read more…

More about Evs, Mobileye, Tesla, Transportation, and Cars

Alligators may not have changed much in 8 million years

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The species of alligator roaming Florida’s swamps and golf courses may be millions of years older than previously thought, scientists from the University of Florida said.

What’s more, the sharp-toothed reptiles we see today may be almost biologically identical to their millennia-old ancestors — an incredibly rare trait for most living species, according to a pair of studies shared with Mashable this week.

“What we saw 8 million years ago in Florida is virtually the same thing as what we have there today,” Evan Whiting, the studies’ lead author and a vertebrate paleontologist, said by phone from Gainesville. Read more…

More about Environmental Conservation, Sea Level Rise, Climate Change, Florida, and American Alligator