Flensburg-Handewitt as expected had an easy job at home against Partizan. Despite playing well in the first half and at one point getting as close as 13:12, Flensburg found form and took a 17:13 advantage at break. In the second half the steady play continued, and in the end Flensburg won with 31:23. Flensburg now shares the 1st place with Chekhovski and HSV Hamburg, 12 points each.In the second game which was supposed to be more interesting ended in an easy home win for Kadetten Schaffhausen. The Swiss took the lead from the beginning of the match, and found way past Roland Mikler to bang huge 21 goals in Pick Szeged‘s net in the first half. The 7 goals advantage from the first half proved enough, and with a 15:15 in the second half, Kadetten is now back again in the fight for the 4th place in Group D, with level points with Pick Szeged now, and one more than RK Zagreb (game less). champions leaguechekhovskiEHFEHF Champions LeagueFlensburgHamburgHSV HamburgkadettenmiklerpickPick SzegedSzegedzagreb ← Previous Story EHF CL: HSV Hamburg with comeback rescues a point in Moscow Next Story → Gasprom to support SEHA – Serbia, Poland and Hungary join “South Stream” league?
Pfadi Winterthur Swiss team Pfadi Winterthur is playing good season in which three team in domestic championship have chances to win title. Wacker Thun, Pfadi Wintertur and the best team in past few years Kadetten Schaffhausen are fighting for the better position before the start of Play Off.This is how looks Pfadi wilingness and passion for this season…photo: PFADI WINTERTHUR ← Previous Story Wisla Plock goes without Nikcevic and Nenadic in “War for Poland” Next Story → HP fans choose EHF CL Preliminary Round “ALL STAR TEAM”
Results of Day 6 at Women’s World Championship 2017 in German cities of Oldenburg and Leipzig…GROUP CRussia – Japan 29:28 Tunisia – Montenegro 29:23Brazil – Denmark 20:22STANDINGS:Russia 8Denmark 6Montenegro 4Japan 3Brazil 3Tunisia 0GROUP DCameroon – South Korea 21:33Serbia – The Netherlands 27:27Germany – China 24:9STANDINGS:Germany 7Serbia 6South Korea 6The Netherlands 5China 0Cameroon 0 ← Previous Story HOLLYWOOD HANDBALL: ReUnited generation of RK Bosna Sarajevo at Masters World Cup Next Story → Germany 2017: Group C goes bananas!
A PARISIAN MAYOR has stirred up a row over France’s plan to legalise gay marriage by announcing he will refuse to preside over same-sex marriages on the grounds they could open the door to the approval of polygamous or incestuous unions.Francois Lebel, the mayor of the capital’s 8th district who married former President Nicolas Sarkozy and ex-supermodel Carla Bruni, has been widely condemned for his comments by politicians across the political spectrum.But there are also growing signs of a grassroots revolt against gay marriage that could yet make life uncomfortable for the ruling Socialists as it seeks to enact the promised legislation.‘Dangerous precedent’Lebel, writing in a municipal newspaper this week, said lifting the taboo on same-sex marriage would set a dangerous precedent.“Why then would the legal age for marriage be maintained? And why forbid marriage between close relations, paedophilia or incest which are all still common currency in the world.”Lebel’s comments were condemned by Socialists from President Francois Hollande down and by leaders of his own party, the UMP.Former prime minister Francois Fillon warned that Hollande’s administration needed to tread carefully on the issue.“They would do well to think twice before opening this debate now,” Fillon said. “We are going to see the French people very deeply split over this issue.”Polls evenly split on gay adoptionPolls suggest up to two thirds of French voters back the right of homosexuals to marry but they are evenly split on whether gays should be able to adopt. Surveys also indicate that the issue is very important for those who are opposed to both reforms.A group of mayors on the island of Corsica have announced they will refuse to carry out gay marriages and local councillors in the Paris suburb of Le Chesnay this week passed a motion calling for a referendum, an idea that seems to be gathering momentum.The idea of a popular vote on the issue is backed by the Christian Democratic Party, an ally of the main centre-right UMP opposition, and by prominent figures in the Catholic church.No sign of reneging by HollandeA draft bill covering both gay marriage and adoption rights is due to be approved in principle by Hollande’s cabinet at the end of this month and the government has promised the legislation will be on the statute book by mid-2013.Hollande has shown no sign of reneging on this manifesto promise despite backtracking on other elements of his socially liberal agenda.With Hollande’s blessing, Interior Minister Manuel Valls has postponed a promised move to allow residents of France from outside the European Union to vote in local elections and plans to make police officers keep a paper record of random identity checks have also been shelved.- © AFP, 2012
DID YOU FEEL that nip in the air this morning?Luckily some of Dublin’s most famous landmarks were well prepared as they donned woolly hats in aid of Innocent Smoothies’ Big Knit 2012.James Connolly, Constance Markievicz, Molly Malone and Charles Stewart Parnell are among the statues which have been fitted with woolly hats to raise awareness for Age Action.
Vodaphone’s charitable foundation has set up mobile networks in warzones and disaster sites in India to provide a lifeline for dispersed families. [The Guardian]Scientists are starting to understand how genes can make one person’s face look so different from another. [BBC]PARTING SHOTPrankster Tom Mabe has put an early Happy Halloween message out in the internet with this new video of a Grim Reaper flying around a park scaring the living daylights out of people.(Video: MabeInAmerica/YouTube)Here’s What Happened Yesterday> (Image: Kate McCann/PA Archive)WORLD#PORTUGAL: The attorney general’s office announced it has reopened the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.#TENNESSEE: Two people were injured in a shooting at a US navy base.#UNITED STATES: Angela Merkel said it’s “really not on” for friends to spy on each other while the Taoiseach said he always operates on the basis that his calls are listened to. [BBC]INNOVATION NEED TO CATCH up? TheJournal.ie brings you a roundup of today’s news.(Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland)IRISHThe government said reports by gardaí and the HSE on two Roma children taken from their families will be handed to the Ombudsman for Children.Alan Shatter faced a grilling from opposition TDs in the Dáil over the same issue.Plans for minimum pricing for alcohol were published.Gardaí are looking for missing Galway man James Ryan.Luke ‘Ming Flanagan launched his Cannabis Regulation Bill.One person was killed in a road collision in Dublin.From tomorrow, homeowners can claim tax relief on renovation and repair work.Aer Lingus will close a cabin crew base at Shannon which employs 87 people.A court in Brazil said Michael Lynn told them he was unaware that there were charges against him by Irish authorities. [RTÉ]A Dublin bus was involved in a crash at College Green.Golden Discs reopened in Dublin.
WHY DOES SPAGHETTI always break into three parts?That’s what students Saoirse O’Reilly (16) and Jade Manley (15) of Dominican College in Wicklow wanted to find out with their project for the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition.Here’s what they discovered:(Video TheJournal.ie/YouTube)Read: Are redheads more flexible than other people?>
A DEAL ON the extension to the Croke Park Agreement is close to completion, following overnight talks between trade unions and public service management.The Minister for Public Expenditure, Brendan Howlin, arrived at the talks in Lansdowne House in Dublin before 7 am this morning.Bernard Harbour, spokesperson for ICTU Public Service Commitee told TheJournal.ie talks have been ongoing since 10 am yesterday morning and they “continued right through the night”.Last night four unions walked out of the talks including The Irish Medical Organisation, The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, the Civil Public and Services Union and Unite.Harbour said that “talks went ahead regardless of the unions walking out” and that ”it’s better to be at the talks table than to be outside it”.At the moment work is being done on the final wording of the deal, which is expected to be announced in the coming hours. Read: Update: INMO, CPSU, Unite and IMO leave Croke Park extension talks >
MOTORISTS IN DUBLIN are being warned to expect some delays on the roads tonight due to the transport of abnormal loads.The abnormal loads, which are fermentation tanks bound for the Guinness brewery, will be transported under garda escort from Dun Laoghaire Port to Victoria Quay between 10pm this evening and approximately 3am tomorrow morning.The convoy will travel from Dun Laoghaire via Monkstown Road, Rock Road, Merrion Road, Shelbourne Road, Merrion Square North, contra flow on Leinster St/ Nassau St, Grafton St Lower, and via Westmoreland St and the North Quays.Road users are advised to avoid the route and to use the N11 as an alternative.
LISTEN: MEP tears up property tax return form in European Parliament. Read: Google exec grilled in UK over ‘devious’ use of Ireland to reduce tax>Read: Revenue has ‘almost more confidence’ in helpline after alleged fraud> IRELAND’S SOCIALIST MEP Paul Murphy surprised European politicians earlier today by ripping up his local property tax form during a speech in parliament.Murphy was speaking about the practice of large companies like Apple and Google” using Ireland as a tax haven”, being incorporated here but registered for tax in Bermuda.He asked how the parliament could talk about tackling aggressive tax planning and tax avoidance when Ireland itself functions as a tax haven.“What makes it even more galling is that at the same time as facilitating the tax avoidance of the major corporations of the world, the Irish government is engaged in a campaign of threatening to rob the property tax from working people,” the Socialist Party MEP told the parliament.“This is my return for the bailout tax, I won’t be registering together with hundreds of thousands of other people who will be saying ‘let the rich pay their taxes, working people have paid enough’,” he added, tearing up the form. (Thejournalvideo/YouTube)Afterwards the MEP tweeted a picture of the torn up form:In an interview with Karen Coleman from radioep.ie after his parliament address, Murphy said he did it as a protest against the “complete lack of tax justice” in Ireland.He also said both parties in government had campaigned over the course of the election against the tax which is “in reality a bailout tax to pay the bankers, the bondholders etc.”
A Burmese soldier provides security for Muslims at their Bawdupa refugee camp in Sittwe, capital of Rakhine state in western Burma on Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013. Sectarian violence last year in western Burma between Buddhist Rakhine and Muslim Rohingya left hundreds of people dead and many more homeless, forcing more than 100,000 – mostly Rohingya – into squalid refugee camps. (AP Photo/Khin Maung Win)AUTHORITIES IN BURMA’S western Rakhine state have imposed a two-child limit for Muslim Rohingya families, a policy that does not apply to Buddhists in the area and comes amid accusations of ethnic cleansing in the aftermath of sectarian violence.Local officials said Saturday that the new measure would be applied to two Rakhine townships that border Bangladesh and have the highest Muslim populations in the state. The townships, Buthidaung and Maundaw, are about 95 percent Muslim.The unusual order makes Burma perhaps the only country in the world to impose such a restriction on a religious group, and is likely to fuel further criticism that Muslims are being discriminated against in the Buddhist-majority country.Family size restrictionsChina has a one-child policy, but it is not based on religion and exceptions apply to minority ethnic groups. India briefly practised forced sterilization of men in a bid to control the population in the mid-1970s when civil liberties were suspended during a period of emergency rule, but a nationwide outcry quickly shut down the programme.Rakhine state spokesman Win Myaing said the new programme was meant to stem rapid population growth in the Muslim community, which a government-appointed commission identified as one of the causes of the sectarian violence.Although Muslims are the majority in the two townships in which the new policy applies, they account for only about 4 percent of Burma’s roughly 60 million people.The measure was enacted a week ago after the commission recommended family planning programmes to stem population growth among Muslims, Win Myaing said. The commission also recommended doubling the number of security forces in the volatile region.“The population growth of Rohingya Muslims is 10 times higher than that of the Rakhine (Buddhists),” Win Myaing said. “Overpopulation is one of the causes of tension.”Critics decry ‘ethnic cleansing’Sectarian violence in Burma first flared nearly a year ago in Rakhine state between the region’s Rakhine Buddhists and Muslim Rohingya. Mobs of Buddhists armed with machetes razed thousands of Muslim homes, leaving hundreds of people dead and forcing 125,000 to flee, mostly Muslims.Witnesses and human rights groups say riot police stood by as crowds attacked Muslims and burned their villages.New York-based Human Rights Watch has accused authorities in Rakhine of fomenting an organised campaign of “ethnic cleansing” against the Rohingya.Since the violence, religious unrest has morphed into a campaign against the country’s Muslim communities in other regions.Containing the strife has posed a serious challenge to President Thein Sein’s reformist government as it attempts to make democratic reforms after nearly half a century of harsh military rule. It has also tarnished the image of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been criticized for failing to speak out strongly in defense of the country’s embattled Muslim community.The central government has not made any statement about the two-child policy, which was introduced at a local level. Calls seeking comment Saturday from two government spokesmen were not immediately returned, but Rakhine state official Myo Than said all local policies require “consent from the central government.”Ban on polygamyWin Myaing said authorities had not yet determined how the measures — which include a ban on polygamy — will be enforced. The policy will not apply yet to other parts of Rakhine state, which have smaller Muslim populations.In its report issued last month, the government-appointed commission wrote: “One factor that has fueled tensions between the Rakhine public and (Rohingya) populations relates to the sense of insecurity among many Rakhines stemming from the rapid population growth of the (Rohingya), which they view as a serious threat.”Predominantly Buddhist, Burma does not include the Rohingya as one of its 135 recognized ethnicities. It considers them to be illegal immigrants from Bangladesh and denies them citizenship. Bangladesh says the Rohingya have been living in Burma for centuries and should be recognized there as citizens.China has been carrying out a planned birth policy since the late 1970s, generally limiting one child to urban couples and no more than two to rural families, to stem rapid population growth that Beijing believes is not sustainable economically and environmentally.Read: Concern in China over number of single malesRead: China’s ‘One Child’ policy produces more risk-averse adults: studyRead: China on verge of abandoning famous ‘one child’ rule
Source: Seth Anderson via FlickrSee the rest of today’s news>Interested in business? The briefcase: this was the week in business What’s the problem? Well, it’s his mugshot.Oh.6. Finally, everybody is talking about economist Thomas Piketty today. Here’s why. 4. The vacant to job at An Garda Síochána is to be advertised internationally, the Justice Minister confirmed today. [IrishTimes.com]5. Women can’t decide if it’s OK to fancy Jeremy Meeks, pictured here. This bus had just arrived with new refugees from Pagak and I wanted to take a picture of it because I was very happy when they picked us up and brought us here by bus. I go to see the bus when new arrivals come. I want to see if my father is there. This day he was not there, he is still not here. Source: Goal2. Fianna Fáil’s Niall Collins has admitted that writing that letter to a judge asking for leniency for a drug dealer was a mistake. Source: Mistakes via Shutterstock3. Apple thinks millions of us will want to buy its new smartwatch, or iWatch as it has already been dubbed. WHAT’S THE STORY?1. There are currently more than 50 million people across the world who have been forced out of their homes because of war. Gatwich, a 12-year-old in Ethiopia, is one of that number and this is one of his recent photos at a refugee camp:
Brazil fans go wild at the Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte. Source: Hassan AmmarOn day 17…THE KNOCKOUT STAGES kicked off with two South American derbies as Brazil faced Chile in Belo Horizonte while Colombia and Uruguay clashed at Rio’s Maracanã.And it was five-time winners Brazil who became the first team into the quarter-finals after a hugely entertaining 120 minutes, which ended in 3-2 win on penalties after a 1-1 draw.The tournament hosts went in front on 18 minutes when a Neymar corner was flicked on by Thiago Silva and David Luiz and Chilean defender Gonzalo Jara both contested the ball before it ended up in the back of the net. While replays seemed to show an own-goal, FIFA rewarded it to Paris Saint-Germain-bound Luiz.La Roja hit back just after the half-hour mark when poor defending from Brazil gifted Alexis Sanchez an opportunity and the Barcelona man beat Julion Cesar.In the second half, referee Howard Webb was spot on to rule Hulk’s goal out for handball despite manager Luiz Felipe Scolari’s protestations and the match finished all-square.Willian and Hulk missed their spot-kicks in the shootout but Brazil earned victory when Jara’s attempt struck the post — which brought Neymar to tears. Neymar breaks down after the game. Source: Frank AugsteinIn the late fixture, Group C winners took on the runners-up of Group D Uruguay — who were without their suspended talisman Luis Suarez.There was little between the teams in the first half but a moment of sheer class from their star man James Rodriguez saw Jose Pekerman’s side go into the break with a one-goal advantage.Five minutes after the restart, the Monaco schemer struck again, this time with his right foot, to help Los Cafeteros progress to the quarter-final for the very first time in their history.They will meet Brazil in the last eight on Friday.Winner – James Rodriguez Source: PA Wire/Press Association ImagesWhat a tournament it has been for 22-year-old James Rodriguez. The Colombian schemer was tipped as one to watch coming into the tournament but even he couldn’t have imagined the past two weeks going as perfectly as this.The current top scorer on five goals after his brace last night, he will go down in history regardless of what else happens thanks to this spectacular volley. Surely a Goal of the Tournament contender:Loser – Gonzalo JaraNot only was he unfortunate enough to be involved in Brazil’s goal, the former Nottingham Forest defender smashed his decisive penalty off the upright to hand Chile’s opponents victory. Source: Frank AugsteinJoga BonitoThey eventually lost out but how about this for Charles Aranguiz’s spot. Cool-as-you-like to fire home into the roof of the net from 12 yards.What we’ve got to look forward to todayLouis van Gaal’s Netherlands, Group A winners ahead of Chile, Spain and Australia, are pitted against a Mexican outfit full of energy inFortaleza. That one kicks off at 5pm.Tomorrow night, it’s one of the real surprise packages Costa Rica taking on an unfancied Greece team (9pm) who have shown they can dig in to ground out results.Stop the World Cup lights, James Rodriguez has scored an absolute crackerWorld Cup hangout: talk football and win a new tablet as we get back to Brazil
Source: Hugh O’Connell/Twitter Brady: Police forces everywhere maintain their powers are inadequate. #macgill14— Hugh O’Connell (@oconnellhugh) July 21, 2014 He said the Department of Justice has been unwilling to cede its control over the gardaí and questioned whether planned reforms would work.“I have a doubt that the Department of Justice will cede the authority that it had over the commissioner. Authority that was broadened and put under a statutory footing [in 2005],” Brady said.Professor Dermot Walsh said that the concentration of garda powers in central government is not the norm in common law countries. He called for the establishment of a Patten-style commission.He said that Ireland is heading down the road of “an elected dictatorship” with the powers gardaí have been given in recent years. McDowell asks if it’s good idea that policing function should be supervised by something like HSE board #macgill14 pic.twitter.com/Gg6aqzjnqw— Hugh O’Connell (@oconnellhugh) July 21, 2014 In her prepared remarks Fitzgerald said she sees it as her duty to stand back from the gardaí. Her predecessor Alan Shatter was widely perceived to have been too close to the former commissioner Callinan.Fitzgerald said it was “not the right to do” to intervene directly in the affairs of An Garda Síochána, saying: ”I also see my duty as standing back from An Garda Síochána. It is a curious thing: when a state agency hits a major problem, boundaries erode.She added: “The right thing for the Minister for Justice to do is to lay down the non-negotiables: the standards, the directions, the absolute requirements of An Garda Síochána.“The wrong thing for the Minister for Justice to do is to make the decisions Garda management should make, informed by the input of every member of the force and – just as important – by the input and expectations of the public.”While the minister said that the totality of what the gardaí do is “professional, good and necessary” the “pockets of misconduct and cover up” should not be ignored.‘An elected dictatorship’Former Irish Times editor and Garda Ombudsman commissioner Conor Brady said that government reforms to the garda force had been introduced on an “ad-hoc basis” and had often been “too little and too late”. TheJournal.ie will be bringing you rolling coverage from the Glenties all this week and you can follow @oconnellhugh for updates.Frank Flannery: Fine Gael’s local election campaign was one of the worst I ever sawRead: ‘A feature of our calamities in Ireland is that we keep repeating them’ ‘Distance from blame’He also criticised planned garda reforms and questioned the wisdom of removing oversight of the gardaí from the government and giving it to an independent policing authority comparing such a body to the HSE or the RTÉ board.McDowell said such a situation would allow the government to distance themselves from any blame when things go wrong in the force.“I don’t believe it’s a good idea for that State to divest itself of responsibility and distance themselves from blame,” he told an audience at the Highlands Hotel in the Donegal village.He maintained that the executive should retain the power to hire and fire the garda commissioner and control budgets.During a question and answer session, McDowell also said that “there is a disease in An Garda Síochána… of indifference and cynicism” though he added that the “great majority” of the force do not suffer from the disease.He said that he was “sickened” by the abuse of the garda disciplinary system which in some cases sees guards “being hammered for tiny things” but bigger issues are let go. Frances Fitzgerald says reform of An Garda Siochana is essential part of democracy that we must get right #macgill14 pic.twitter.com/oBN3LPas98— Hugh O’Connell (@oconnellhugh) July 21, 2014 McDowell: There is a real question as to whether an independent police authority is an idea whose time should never come. #macgill14— Hugh O’Connell (@oconnellhugh) July 21, 2014 Source: Hugh O’Connell/Twitter Fitzgerald’s responseIn her speech, Fitzgerald said that McDowell had raised “relevant questions”.“There are serious questions about the security issues and how they are managed in the context of establishing the garda authority,” she said.Of the reforms brought in 2005 under Michael McDowell, Fitzgerald said that while they were “excellent reforms” they were a missed opportunity in that they did not address “root and branch issues of basic policing” that arose after the Morris Tribunal into garda corruption in Donegal. Updated 22.25pm FORMER JUSTICE MINISTER Michael McDowell has hit out at the government’s planned reforms to An Garda Síochána, saying that control of the force should remain in the hands of the government. Speaking at the MacGill Summer School in Glenties tonight, McDowell made clear his opposition to the idea of an independent policing authority as has been proposed by the government in recent months.In her speech, justice minister Frances Fitzgerald outlined her plans to restore the public’s confidence in the gardaí and said that McDowell’s concerns were relevant and that he had raised “serious questions” that would be examined in drafting the reforms.In his address, McDowell also said the circumstances surrounding Fitzgerald’s appointment were “murky at best”.McDowell said the failure of the Taoiseach to explain events surrounding former garda commissioner Martin Callinan’s departure to the Dáil was an “abdication from one of the cornerstones of our democratic system”. He said reforms introduced after the Morris Tribunal into garda corruption on Donegal offer “merely the appearance of accountability”.Acting garda commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan is due to address the MacGill Summer School tomorrow evening. Professor Dermot Walsh: The garda is one of the most secretive police forces in the democratic world… there is a cult of secrecy #macgill14— Hugh O’Connell (@oconnellhugh) July 21, 2014 Source: Hugh O’Connell/Twitter Source: Hugh O’Connell/Twitter Source: Hugh O’Connell/Twitter
LINKEDIN HAS PAID nearly $6 million (€4.4 million) in back wages and damages to 359 current and former employees after a US investigation found it had failed to compensate them appropriately for overtime work.Under a settlement announced by the Labour Department on Monday, the career-focused social network said it paid more than $3.3 million (€2.4 million) in overtime back wages and $2.5 million (€1.8 million) in damages to workers in California, Illinois, Nebraska and New York.“This company has shown a great deal of integrity by fully cooperating with investigators and stepping up to the plate without hesitation to help make workers whole,” said David Weil, administrator of the Labor Department’s Wage and Hour Division. ”We are particularly pleased that LinkedIn also has committed to take positive and practical steps toward securing future compliance.”Labor Department investigators found that LinkedIn violated the overtime and record-keeping provisions of the Fair Labour Standards Act by neglecting to record, account and pay for all hours worked in a workweek.Under the law, covered, nonexempt employees must be paid at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour for all hours worked, plus time and a half their regular hourly rates for any work beyond 40 hours in a week.LinkedIn attributed the violations to “not having the right tools in place for a small subset of our sales force to track hours properly,” adding that it had begun to remedy the problem before the Labor Department investigation.“LinkedIn has made every effort possible to ensure each impacted employee has been made whole,” a spokesman added in a statement.The company has also agreed to provide compliance training and distribute its policy prohibiting off the clock work to all nonexempt employees and their managers, remind managers of the affected employees that overtime work must be recorded and paid for, and reiterate its policy prohibiting retaliation against any employee who raises workplace concerns.“Off the clock hours are all too common for the American worker. This practice harms workers, denies them the wages they have rightfully earned and takes away time with families,” said Susana Blanco, Wage and Hour Division district director in San Francisco.“We urge all employers, large and small, to review their pay practices to ensure employees know their basic workplace rights and that the commitment to compliance works through all levels of the organisation.”- © AFP, 2014Read: Explainer: Why the new challenger to Bitcoin is worth keeping an eye on >Read: China regulator warns Microsoft not to obstruct its investigation >
You can count on Epic and Microsoft to never miss a trick when trying to sell more copies of a new game. And if it can sell you the special edition to boot, well that’s a few extra dollars profit on every copy.With that in mind, the publisher/developer has decided to link access to the Gears of War 3 beta with buying Bulletstorm. Not that buying Bulletstorm is going to be a tough decision–have you seen the latest video?AdChoices广告This glorious overindulgence of kill stats will sell itself. But Epic Games wants you to spend $59.99 buying the Epic Edition for Xbox 360. With it you get 25,000 experience points, a Peace Maker Carbine, boots, armor, and a different looking leash. The icing on the cake is access to the Gears of War beta, which comes online at some point next year.Bulletstorm will be released on February 22nd. Will you be going Epic?Read more at Destructoid
Yesterday we heard a rumor that Apple would start selling unlocked iPhone 4s in Apple Stores tomorrow. We weren’t sure this was going to turn out to be true, as Apple would need to offer both versions of the handset to cater for everyone’s needs, right? The source of the rumor also wasn’t well-known or proven reliable.Well, it turns out the rumor was true, but Apple is only offering the GSM version of the iPhone 4 in unlocked form. In so doing it severely limits the choices you have of what network to get a contract on. However, if you are a traveller, then it does open up the option of easily switching to a different SIM for whatever country you visit.The cost of the unlocked phone is quite steep at $649 for the 16GB model, but then you aren’t signing up to a two-year contract so the prodit has to be made at point-of-sale. If you want the 32GB edition the price goes up to an eye-watering $749.Both black and white models are available. Black handset buyers have to endure a 3 day wait, white handsets have a 5+ day wait at the moment.So if you can only really use this unlocked iPhone on AT&T’s network in the US, why would you consider buying one unlocked? Other than for travel, it may mean you can get a better deal on a contract. As the contract price works in paying for the phone, you should be able to negotiate a deal that ends up costing you less over two years than a contract with phone costs.Read more at Engadget
There seems to be a wealth of organisms under the sea that are good for our health. True, some fish have those good omega-3s we need, and krill oil also gives us much-need omega-3s, but British scientists are working on a way to use coral to produce a “sunscreen pill.”It seems that coral produces natural sunscreen compounds to protect itself from damaging UV rays. Scientists from King’s College London believe these compounds could be the basis for a new type of sunscreen in humans. The team took a 4-month trip to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia to study the “biochemical processes behind coral’s innate gift.” They studied samples from the Acroporal coral, an endangered species that scientists think can be replicated in the lab to produce these compounds.The magic doesn’t just come from the coral itself, it actually comes from the relationship between the coral and the algae living within the coral that make the compounds together. Since coral can’t move around, they have to have a source of food to survive. The algae grows inside their tissue and needs sunlight as a source of energy. So, coral has to live in very shallow water. Since the waters are so clear and the coral is so close to the surface, they’re susceptible to sunburn, just like humans. You’ve probably seen white coral before that has lost its color due to “coral bleaching” which is the result of losing these symbiotic algae partners.Diving down to depths of the ocean where there’s very little sunlight, the team collected corals and brought them back to the surface to see if they could induce them to start making the sunscreening compounds. The team was successful in doing that, so they’re working on using genetic engineering to recreate the compounds in the lab. They’ll then have a sustainable supply of the compound so they don’t have to go back to the Great Barrier Reef for samples. Plus, it’s an endangered species, so there are only so many samples they can legally take.The plan is to recreate the sunscreen in test tubes and then test them on human skin samples left over from tummy tucks and other procedures. They’ve seen the sunscreen be effective in small fish that eat the sunscreen-compounds from the algae. These fish are then eaten by larger fish, and the sunscreen is passed through the food chain, benefiting each fish.The team also wants to transplant the biosynthetic pathways from the corals into actual plants. If they’re high-valued crops, it’s possible that this would make them more resistant to sun damage, which can be a real problem in agriculture in third world countries.Though the team doesn’t know how much sun protection it will actually give until they begin testing, they hope to start testing on humans soon.via BBC
While SOPA has been a popular target of tech websites, the mainstream media hasn’t been giving it nearly as much attention. Part of this is because geeks better understand the potential repercussions of the legislation, but it’s also because the mainstream news outlets are owned by companies that sponsor the bill. That may not, however, stop comedian Jon Stewart from jumping into the fray.Before the taping of last night’s Daily Show, a redditor with a VIP pass cornered Stewart to ask him about SOPA. “The internet sent me,” he said, “to ask you what you think of SOPA and why you haven’t mentioned it on the show.” Stewart’s reply was that his writers have been so swamped with the election that they have missed it. He then gave a glance to one of his writers and added that he’d look into it.During the show’s opening, Stewart surprised the Redditor by saying that tomorrow night’s guest will be “the internet.” He then mentioned SOPA, and said that he had “some reading to catch up on”:Though it remains to be seen just how much focus Stewart will give to SOPA, it’s refreshing to see the issue getting some more press. Ironically, the comedian Stewart is looked to by millions of viewers as a source of information on current events. You could say that traditional news coverage has become such a joke that Stewart’s comical coverage is seen as having an honesty and integrity that other outlets lack.Of course it isn’t clear as to what angle Stewart would take on SOPA, or if his bosses would try to squash any negative references to the bill. Comedy Central is owned by Viacom, which is an avid supporter of SOPA. Stewart may be popular enough that he can contractually say what he wants without network censorship, but that isn’t clear. It’s also possible that Stewart, a performer in the copyright industry, would be annoyed enough by his work being given away that he wouldn’t necessarily oppose the legislation.What’s most important, however, is that Stewart has a huge following of young and passionate viewers who may not necessarily understand the potential ramifications of SOPA. The more that SOPA becomes a hotbed issue, the more likely members of congress will be to examine what the bill actually means before voting “Yea.”via Reddit, Ars Technica
Tim Cook has made it clear we won’t be seeing any new Apple devices released until late September at the earliest. We expect the iPhone 6 to be announced at that time, and then the iPad mini will be 12 months old come November, so we expect a hardware revision to be unveiled.It’s been a while since Apple has managed to keep the details of a new product secret, though. We’ve pretty much known all the details of devices like the iPhone 5 and new iMacs before Tim Cook set foot on stage to announce them. And it looks like we are in for more of the same with the revised iPad mini.Supposed specs for the iPad mini 2 have been leaked to Dutch website MobiLeaks along with a render of what the new tablet will look like.The leaked specs include:7.9-inch 324ppi Retina display (2048 x 1536 resolution)Apple A6X processor8-megapixel rear facing camera2-megapixel front-facing camera16GB, 32GB, and 64GB storage options7.5mm thick deviceThere are some clear improvements here over the existing iPad mini that should make this a no brainer upgrade for most existing owners. The display remains the same size, but has increased its resolution to match that of its big brother. Apparently we’re also going to see the processor upgraded from the dual-core A5 to an A6X chip, which is necessary to handle that higher resolution display. Both cameras are also getting a healthy upgrade from the current 5MP and 1.2MP parts.If these specs are correct, then the higher resolution display and faster processor are going to put a greater strain on the mini’s battery, meaning shorter battery life. However, you may notice that the iPad mini 2 is slightly thicker than the 1st-gen device. It’s only 0.3mm, but that may account for a slightly larger battery shipping inside to help maintain the existing 10 hours claimed between charges.Such an update turns the iPad mini into the equivalent of the current iPad in a smaller package. Apple will have to bring a major update to the next iPad to re-establish the performance gap and keep people buying the larger, more profitable tablet next year.