Life and Style

London-based company focused on “cutting edge artificial intelligence" could supply the brains for Google's burgeoning robotics division

New chapter for Barnes & Noble

Biggest US bookshop chain replaces chief executive with head of digital division

Britons are biggest online spenders in Europe

Britons are the biggest online spenders in Europe, making nearly a third of all internet purchases across the continent during 2009, a report showed today.

Liz Hoggard: Support a local bookshop this Christmas

The bookshop, like the library, is the great democratic space

Amazon cancels Royal Mail contract over strike fears

Royal Mail was dealt a bitter blow last night as the online retailer Amazon withdrew its contract with the service, fearing a series of strikes that could hamper parcel deliveries in the run-up to Christmas.

Amazon settles Kindle scrap with student has agreed that it won't remove e-books from US users' Kindle electronic readers without their permission, as part of a proposed settlement of a lawsuit over the online retailer's deletion of a George Orwell novel from a high school student's e-reader.

David Prosser: The shine comes off online retail

Outlook: The young people who shop online are also those hit hardest by the recession

Amazon settles $79m Toys R Us suit will pay $51 million to Toys R Us to end a long-standing legal dispute between the online retailer and the toy seller.

Bites: The penny drops on cheap treats

This week's New Review Food Special celebrates nature and, admittedly, there's not much that's natural about sweets, but they are a simple pleasure. And since belt-tightening is all around (financially, if not physically), sweets give pleasure beyond their diminutive size. One of our favourites for cheap thrills is online retailer A Quarter Of, purveyors of old-fashioned confectionery, which reports sales up 100 per cent since this time last year. That's a lot of flying saucers...

Sales rank purged from Amazon apologised yesterday for an "embarrassing and ham-fisted cataloging error" that led to the sales ranking being removed from tens of thousands of books.

Five million set for internet shopping spree tomorrow

An estimated five million Britons will abandon the normal routine tomorrow and boot up their computer to snap up bargains tomorrow. Retailers such as John Lewis, Dixons, Comet and many others will start their online sales tonight, cutting prices by up to 70 per cent.

Spotlight: 3V Visa internet shopping gift card

The problem with getting someone vouchers or book tokens for Christmas is that you often limit how the recipient can spend the gift. The new 3V Visa Internet Shopping Gift Card is much more versatile; it can be used on any website that accepts Visa, and that's pretty much all of them.

Figures soar for secure online payments

The number of credit and debit cards which are signed up to a secure online payment system has soared by more than 650 per cent during the past two years, figures showed today.

High street shops go online

The internet is a virtual high street – that’s why the big retailers already have online stores’, but are they any good? We talk to Nick Robertson is CEO of, the online retail fashion store.

Sales surge 90 per cent at internet retailer Asos despite consumer slowdown

Asos, an internet retailer initially set up for customers who wanted to look like their favourite film stars, was feeling stellar itself yesterday as it shrugged off the consumer slowdown to double sales last year.

Dundee Utd 1 Celtic 4: Nakamura terrorises the Terrors

Travel may broaden the mind but it tires the legs, and Gordon Strachan will be glad that he persuaded Japan to give Shunsuke Nakamura a week off. Instead of making a 20,000-mile round trip to Tokyo for an Asian Cup tie, Nakamura enjoyed some rest in Glasgow, and bene-fited yesterday with a hat-trick that buried Dundee United.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform