YouTube cover versions have gone from being unwelcome to broadly tolerated - and why not?

Earlier this year, a band that I play in decided to record a cover version of a TV theme tune, make a video for it and put it online in the hope of attracting some attention. What began as a whimsical idea ended up as a severe administrative headache; I discovered that to do things by the book, it was likely that I'd need to get permission from the publisher of the original song to do so. If I didn't, I'd be participating in what Wired magazine once referred to as "quite possibly the most popular creative art that's against the law".

News to me: family events were recorded in the personal columns

Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements

Change of art: Google’s new Roboto font placed over the old one (hint: red new, blue old)

Google has spent 18 months changing its typeface - but can you tell the difference?

Roboto - the system font that's been used on Google's mobile operating system, Android, since 2011 - needed tweaking

Skype me up, Scotty: Captain Kirk and Dr McCoy use their universal translators in ‘Star Trek’

Skype Translator vows to translate multilingual voice calls - but is it any good?

David Crookes finds out how fluent the new service is - and whether it has the potential to revolutionise the way we communicate

Google+ becomes more privacy-friendly with launch of pseudonyms

There's an accepted piece of wisdom which says that if people know who we are on the internet, we'll behave ourselves. It makes sense. After all, who'd want to be identified publicly as an abusive ranter who responds to even the mildest provocation with a stream of expletives?

Psy dances in his hit music video 'Gangnam Style'

Most viewed YouTube videos: From 'Gangnam Style' to 'Wrecking Ball'

Nine of the top ten most-watched YouTube clips are music videos. Scroll to see which artists make the cut - and why Psy's 'Gangnam Style' can't be toppled

The byte stuff: 'Silicon Valley'

Why new TV show Silicon Valley is like Entourage for geeks

The new TV comedy show focuses on California's hi-tech companies – so don't expect any female whizz-kids, says Gerard Gilbert
Healthy turn: spiralizing encourages
us to eat larger quantities of fruit and
vegetables, especially raw

The spiralizer: Welcome to the latest must-have kitchen gadget

One American gadget is aiming to revolutionise how we serve our vegetables, but do we really want to eat spaghetti made from courgettes? Nicole Mowbray reports

Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

From the cyclist who maps her rides to the dieter who 3D-scans his belly, 'Quantified Selfers' monitor, mark down and mull over their personal data (often for hours) - and now they’ve got all the technological help they need to feed their obsessions…

Tech revolution: How TV is finally computing the stuff of comedy and drama

Even shows that aren’t primarily about the tech industry are falling over themselves to reference it

Spellbound: turning off the autocorrect meant losing the chance to make all sorts of jokes about texting mix-ups

Autocorrect has its uses but it can go rogue with embarrassing results - so is it time to ditch it?

Matthew J X Malady persuaded friends to message manually instead, but failed to factor in fat fingers and drunk texting
Spectators photograph the Tour de France riders as they make their way through the Yorkshire countryside

Rhodri Marsden: Filming everything is a dangerous mix of vanity and stupidity

A badly-framed, woozy digital keepsake, an aide-memoire at best, a pointless act of narcissism in pursuit of social media thumbs-up at worst

Well connected: more than five million people use Grindr, founded by Joel Simkhai

Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app - and my mum keeps trying to hook me up!'

Five years on from its launch and Grindr is the world's most popular dating app for gay men. Its founder Joel Simkhai answers his critics, describes his isolation as a child – and tells Patrick Strudwick that his mum couldn't be more proud

Hands off: we like to keep our gadgets close
Eyes wide open: Google Glass is now on sale in the UK

Could Google Glass be the future of tourism?

Travel tech

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Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

Terry Venables column

Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

Michael Calvin's Inside Word

Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past