This Day in Tech: Atlantis returns, ending shuttle era; Twitter will close $800M funding round

Too busy to keep up with today's tech news? Here are some of the more interesting stories from CNET (and elsewhere) for Thursday, July 21.

The space shuttle Atlantis landed safely this morning in Florida. NASA

Too busy to keep up with today's tech news? Here are some of the more interesting stories from CNET (and elsewhere) for Thursday, July 21.

• The shuttle Atlantis landed in Florida this morning, ending NASA's 135th and final manned shuttle mission to space. Crew members Christopher Ferguson, Douglas Hurley, Sandra Magnus, and Rex Walheim became known as the final four. The mission was virtually flawless, with the crew delivering five-and-a-half tons of supplies and equipment to the International Space Station. "You know, the space station's changed the way we view our world, and it's changed the way we view our universe. A lot of emotion today, but one thing's indisputable: America's not gonna stop exploring," Ferguson said, as the shuttle landed.

• As Nokia reports big losses, AT&T sales are increasing , with the company reporting that it activated 3.6 million iPhones in the quarter. But AT&T isn't just an iPhone carrier. Indeed, 40 percent of its smartphone sales weren't iPhones. Smartphones such as the Motorola Atrix helped the company expand its product lines, which was necessary after the iPhone exclusivity agreement ended.

• Geeks congregate at North America's largest comic book and entertainment media convention, Comic-Con in San Diego, and CNET is there to give you a preview of what's to come in the world of comics and related wares.

• Use Gmail to make calls just like a regular phone. New updates allow users to take multiple calls and put people on hold. Click here to find out how.

• Recent attacks have been aimed at corporations like Sony and Lockheed Martin, reports The Wall Street Journal, but hackers are turning their attention to smaller shops. Security experts say 63 percent of cyberattacks occurred at businesses with 100 or fewer employees. What gives? It's the smaller firms that lack tech security, making it much easier and less riskier to break into a bunch of small businesses than more guarded corporations. For instance, a hacker will attack a small business to steal its online banking log-in details and use them to transfer funds out of the account.

• In other hacking news, the Anonymous hacking group claims to have breached NATO security and has accessed confidential documents. In a tweet, @AnonymousIRC wrote: "Yes, #NATO was breached. And we have lots of restricted material. With some simple injection. In the next days, wait for interesting data :)"

• Twitter will close $800 million in funding in the next few weeks. Kara Swisher of All Things Digital reports that this is the situation Facebook was in a few years ago when investors and employees could monetize their privately held common stock. Twitter still doesn't have a solid business model though. Other breaking Twitter news: Jack Dorsey cleans house, letting four key product managers go.

• Give Coca-Cola your e-mail address in exchange for a free Spotify invitation .

 

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