Thursday, December 29, 2011

800,000 overseas tourist visit Hainan in this year 2011

China's southernmost island region of Hainan is estimated to have received more than 800,000 overseas tourists this year, according to a local tourism official.
Meanwhile, with 13 direct round-trip flights between Hainan and Taiwan available each week, the number of tourists from Taiwan exceeds 100,000 this year.
The increase in abroad tourists has been partly attributed to the visa-free entry policy. Travelers from 26 countries, including Russia, Germany, the Republic of Korea and Malaysia, could join tour groups and register with authorities just one day ahead of their planned departure times.
Hainan has recently been building itself into a world-class travel destination, and tourism revenue has been bolstered by the increased number of tourists. Revenues this year are predictable to total around 32 billion yuan (5.06 billion U.S. dollars), according to statistics from the provincial tourism commission.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Five Killed in Latest Baghdad Bombing

BAGHDAD — A suicide bomber driving a car packed with explosives attacked a checkpoint in front of the Iraqi Interior Ministry on Monday morning, killing five, wounding 39 and roiling a country unsettled by a political crisis and a wave of deadly bombings just days ago.

As Baghdad’s rush hour was beginning around 7:30 a.m., the bomber tried to ram the car through one of the few entrances to a compound that houses the ministry, the country’s police academy, several jails and a hospital, according to officials.

Security officers opened fire on the car and the bomber detonated the explosives, killing two of the officers and three civilians, the officials said. Many officers were among the wounded.

“When the explosion happened it was so loud I couldn’t hear anything — I felt like I was in a different world,” said Ahmed Abed, 45, a taxi driver whose car was damaged in the attack. “What am I going to do now? I depend on this car for supporting my family.”

The Ministry of Interior has a symbolic importance in the ongoing political crisis that engulfed the country as the last American troops were withdrawing a little more than a week ago. The crisis began when a spokesman for the ministry, which is controlled by Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, publicly accused the country’s Sunni vice-president, Tariq al-Hashimi, of running a death squad.

In a televised news conference, the spokesman waved a warrant for Mr. Hashimi’s arrest in front of the cameras and played videotaped confessions of Mr. Hashimi’s body guards saying he was behind orders they received to kill government officials. The accusations were a tipping point in a widening rift between Mr. Maliki’s Shiite-led government and leaders of the country’s Sunni minority.

On Thursday morning, a series of explosions across Baghdad killed more than 60 people, marking the deadliest day in the capital in more than a year and underscoring the country’s tenuous security.

No group claimed responsibility for that attack or the one on Monday, but they were similar to others conducted by Al Qaeda in Iraq, the insurgent group accused of trying to plunge the country back into a sectarian conflict by pitting Sunnis and Shiites against one another.

The bombing on Monday came hours after the Iraqi government reached a potential breakthrough to relocate 3,400 Iranian dissidents living at a camp inside Iraq’s borders, potentially unwinding a standoff between Iraq and the camp’s residents. The exiles are members a paramilitary group that has tried to topple Iran’s government and is listed as a terrorist group by the United States. They were given refuge by Saddam Hussein during his war with Iran, but the current Iraqi government, with closer ties to Iran, has vowed to dismantle the camp in eastern Iraq.

Friday, December 16, 2011

US declares Iraq war over

BAGHDAD (AP) -- After nearly nine years, 4,500 American dead and 100,000 Iraqi dead, U.S. officials formally shut down the war in Iraq -- a conflict that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said was worth the American sacrifice, because it set Iraq on a path to democracy.

Panetta stepped off his military plane in Baghdad Thursday as the leader of America's war in Iraq, but will leave as one of many top U.S. and global officials who hope to work with the struggling nation as it tries to find its new place in the Middle East and the broader world.

Bombings and gun battles are still common. And experts are concerned about the Iraqi security force's ability to defend the nation against foreign threats.

In addition to the dead, the war left 32,000 Americans wounded and cost the U.S. more than $800 billion.

Still, Panetta said earlier this week, it "has not been in vain."

Panetta and several other U.S. diplomatic, military and defense leaders participated Thursday in a symbolic ceremony during which the flag of U.S. Forces-Iraq was officially retired, or "cased," according to Army tradition. The U.S. Forces-Iraq flag was furled -- or wrapped -- around a flagpole and covered in camouflage. It will be brought back to the United States.

"You will leave with great pride -- lasting pride," Panetta told the troops. "Secure in knowing that your sacrifice has helped the Iraqi people to begin a new chapter in history."

During a stop in Afghanistan this week, Panetta described the mission as "making that country sovereign and independent and able to govern and secure itself."

That, he said, is "a tribute to everybody -- everybody who fought in that war, everybody who spilled blood in that war, everybody who was dedicated to making sure we could achieve that mission."

Iraqi citizens offered a more pessimistic assessment. "The Americans are leaving behind them a destroyed country," said Mariam Khazim of Sadr City. "The Americans did not leave modern schools or big factories behind them. Instead, they left thousands of widows and orphans."

The Iraq Body Count website says more than 100,000 Iraqis have been killed since the U.S. invasion in 2003.

A member of the political coalition loyal to anti-American cleric Muqtada al-Sadr saw another message in the U.S. withdrawal. "The American ceremony represents the failure of the U.S. occupation of Iraq due to the great resistance of the Iraqi people," said Sadrist lawmaker Amir al-Kinani.

Panetta echoed President Barack Obama's promise that the U.S. plans to keep a robust diplomatic presence in Iraq, foster a deep and lasting relationship with the nation and maintain a strong military force in the region.

As of Thursday, there were two U.S. bases and about 4,000 U.S. troops in Iraq -- a dramatic drop from the roughly 500 military installations and as many as 170,000 troops during the surge ordered by President George W. Bush in 2007, when violence and raging sectarianism gripped the country. All U.S. troops are slated to be out of Iraq by the end of the year, but officials are likely to meet that goal a bit before then.

The total U.S. departure is a bit earlier than initially planned, and military leaders worry that it is a bit premature for the still maturing Iraqi security forces, who face continuing struggles to develop the logistics, air operations, surveillance and intelligence sharing capabilities they will need in what has long been a difficult neighborhood.

U.S. officials were unable to reach an agreement with the Iraqis on legal issues and troop immunity that would have allowed a small training and counterterrorism force to remain. U.S. defense officials said they expect there will be no movement on that issue until sometime next year.

Still, despite Obama's earlier contention that all American troops would be home for Christmas, at least 4,000 forces will remain in Kuwait for some months. The troops will be able to help finalize the move out of Iraq, but could also be used as a quick reaction force if needed.

Obama met in Washington with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki earlier this week, vowing to remain committed to Iraq as the two countries struggle to define their new relationship. Ending the war was an early goal of the Obama administration, and Thursday's ceremony will allow the president to fulfill a crucial campaign promise during a politically opportune time. The 2012 presidential race is roiling and Republicans are in a ferocious battle to determine who will face off against Obama in the election.

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Thursday, December 08, 2011

When Apple pulls the veil off of its newest store on Friday, New Yorkers will get their first glimpse at the classical architecture-meets-computers retail space inside Grand Central Terminal.

Behind a temporary black facade, which has teased commuters for weeks with "arriving soon" messages, Apple has been negotiating aggressively and stealthily with contractors and government agencies to quickly secure a favorable deal. The Grand Central outlet is just one of several high-profile stores the company has been readying with characteristic covertness.

Interviews with nearly two dozen people involved in the development of upcoming and recently opened U.S. Apple Stores, including the one in Grand Central, provide a look at Apple's unusually furtive way of doing business. These people say Apple sometimes employs uncommon legal tactics, refuses to name itself in public documents and hearings, and has sworn city government officials to secrecy.

Apple's shrewd negotiating tactics are well known in other parts of its business. Nondisclosure agreements are strictly enforced with employees, contractors and partners, and punishment for disloyalty is swift and unforgiving.

For example, employees who leak internal memos may be fired as soon as they are discovered. When prototype iPhones were lost in bars in two consecutive years, police officers searched the homes of people suspected of possessing them.

But retail chains, especially those that sell electronics, aren't typically associated with controversy. And retail industry executives say Apple's demands for absolute secrecy in its store-development process are peculiar and unjustified.

An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment for this story.

'Apple is not typical'

As buzz grew about work on a Grand Central Apple Store, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which controls the station, spurned many interview requests -- even months after the store was unveiled at a public meeting in July. A New York Times editorial published in August lamented that procuring any details about the project "was like trying to uncover a state secret."

When reached by phone in October, MTA spokeswoman Marjorie Anders told CNN in response to a question about the soon-to-open Apple Store, "We're not talking about that." Why? "Because Apple doesn't want us to."

Is this typical?

"No, but Apple is not typical," Anders said. Further questions, she said, would need to be submitted in a formal Freedom of Information request, a government process that can take months to yield documents.

Grand Central is a historic landmark, meaning each project must go through an approval process. Apple asked for its architects to deal directly with New York's State Historic Preservation Office -- a role that's supposed to be handled by the MTA -- so the process was completed promptly, said Beth Cumming, a director for New York's State Historic Preservation Office.

Similar maneuvers are being used at other stores. Officials in Berkeley, California, referred questions about a new Apple Store to the city's formal public-records division. They offered two brief reports, one of which Apple did not list its name on.

"We generally don't talk about our customers," said Berkeley spokeswoman Mary Kay Clunies-Ross in a phone interview in September. "We're obviously glad that Apple is here and hope they will stay for a long time."

At a shopping mall in the Seattle suburb of Bellevue, Washington, where Apple already has a store, the computer company is opening a new one on the floor above, where clothing and jewelry stores used to be, according to public documents.

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Monday, December 05, 2011

APPLE has lost a request in the US for a court order in its attempt to block sales of Samsung's 4G smartphone and Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet computer, according to a ruling that was posted on a court docket and then removed.

The iPad maker, in its lawsuit filed in a federal court in San Jose, California, sought an order blocking Samsung from selling its Galaxy line of mobile devices in the US based on claims they violate Apple patents.

The lawsuit is part of a legal battle between the companies being fought in 10 countries, including Australia, where the High Court on Friday granted Apple a further delay of court orders overturning an earlier ruling which banned the device from sale.

Samsung said in a statement that the US federal court ruling confirmed its long-held view that Apple's arguments lacked merit.

"In particular, the court has recognised that Samsung has raised substantial questions about the validity of certain of Apple's design patents," the statement said.

The two companies have filed at least 30 lawsuits against each other, Samsung said. The conflict began in April, when Apple filed the San Jose lawsuit claiming the South Korean company's Galaxy devices copied the iPhone and iPad.

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Friday, December 02, 2011

Mayan tablet does not predict end of the world in 2012, says expert

The end is not quite nigh. At least that is the conclusion of a German expert who says his decoding of a Mayan tablet with a reference to a 2012 date denotes a transition to a new era and not a possible end of the world as others have read it.

The interpretation of the hieroglyphs by Sven Gronemeyer of La Trobe University in Australia was presented for the first time on Wednesday at the archaeological site of Palenque in southern Mexico.

His comments came less than a week after Mexico's archaeology institute acknowledged there was a second reference to the 2012 date in Mayan inscriptions, touching off another round of talk about whether it predicts the end of the world.

Gronemeyer has been studying the stone tablet, which was found years ago at the archaeological site of Tortuguero in Mexico's Gulf coast state of Tabasco.

He said the inscription described the return of the mysterious Mayan god Bolon Yokte at the end of a 13th period of 400 years, known as Baktuns, on the equivalent of 21 December 2012. Mayans considered 13 a sacred number. There is nothing apocalyptic in the date, he said.

The text was carved about 1,300 years ago. The stone has cracked, which has made the end of the passage almost illegible.

Gronemeyer said the inscription referred to the end of a cycle of 5,125 years since the beginning of the Mayan Long Count calendar in 3113 BC.

The fragment was a prophecy of the then ruler Bahlam Ajaw, who wanted to plan the passage of the god, Gronemeyer said.

"For the elite of Tortuguero, it was clear they had to prepare the land for the return of the god and for Bahlam Ajaw to be the host of this initiation," he said.

Bolon Yokte, the god of creation and war, was to prevail that day in a sanctuary of Tortuguero.

"The date acquired a symbolic value because it is seen as a reflection of the day of creation," Gronemeyer said. "It is the passage of a god and not necessarily a great leap for humanity."

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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Frank Delape Scams – Not So effective

Frank delape scams are not so effective since it has no worthy points to support it. Frank Delape is a person who has been very success in the philanthropic community and he also engage actively in the philanthropic events throughout the year. He is a very busy scheduled entrepreneur and apart from his hectic schedule, he also engages himself in the philanthropic endeavors. Starting from UNICEF program and continuing more, his faith inspire him to serve others with purpose. Whenever frank delape participate in the fund raising programs it seems to be great fundraising success and he protects even animals which are abused and neglected.

When considering philanthropic endeavors, frank and Kimberly delape always give back their support and provide the necessary help to the needy. Frank Delape not only care for the needy people, but also care for reducing the carbon footprint of residential resorts and hopes to inspire others with a new approach to development in Panama. These points are there to say that the frank delape scams are not so potent and the main intention behind it is to spoil the reputation of him, but is has been broken up easily with his philanthropic endeavors.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Frank Delape - The Generous Philanthropist

As goes the quotes by Maxwell “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.”The best example for these quotes is MR Frank Delape the CEO of benchmark equity group and he is the real leader for many those who want to excel in their business and also for those who want to help others. He knows his way and goes in it in the right path and showing the best way to other though his great philanthropic endeavors. As said by john Wesley “Let me do all the good I can, to all the people I can, as often as I can, for I shall not pass this way again." Frank Delape goes behind these quotes and he has been doing many good things to many people and made their life shine better.

Frank Delape Philanthropic Diary is full, but still he utilizes even the small space of that page and dedicates his time to help others. He gave proper school supplies to the children’s studying in panama schools and has made this as his yearly initiative work and every year he dresses himself as the Father Christmas and present gifts to the children in the bridge over troubled waters. Frank Delape hosted a Christmas party for the whole San Jose de malambo orphanage and helped the Indians in the archipelago of bocas Del toro by providing proper medical aided facilities. Frank Delape has been so kind and he cares for the animals which are abused and neglected. Through Crisis intervention of Houston he has been serving person in crisis and providing help, hope and inspiration to those who might otherwise be forgotten through tux & tennies foundation. Let his work continue so even the people in other parts of the world can be benefitted.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

iPhone 4 still works after 13,500-ft fall from skydiver's pocket!

London, July 19 (ANI): In what is sure to make Apple proud of its gadgets, one of their i Phone 4 units, which recently slipped out of a skydiver's pocket, survived intact after a 13,500-ft fall to the ground. That's not all, it can still make and receive calls!

Jarrod McKinney said he was in such a rush to "get out the door" of the plane on a recent tandem jump that he forgot to secure his device. As a result, it landed on top of a two-storey building.

McKinney, however, managed to locate using a GPS application. It was then that his friend Joe Johnson, a skydiving instructor, jokingly dialed Mr McKinney's number - and the iPhone rang.

'They were all like, "It works! It works!"' he said.

While the glass exterior was cracked to pieces, the 37-year-old from Minnesota was still able to make a call.

"As unbelievable as it sounds, my phone had fallen 13,500ft, and was still sending out a signal," the Daily Mail quoted him as telling CNN.

The news that an iPhone 4 could survive a 13,500ft fall is especially surprising considering the problems the model had with its antenna reception upon its release last year.

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Man found in suitcase trying to escape from prison by her girl friend.

CHETUMAL, Mexico (AP) — Police say a woman was caught trying to sneak her common-law-husband out of a Mexican prison in a suitcase following a conjugal visit.

A spokesman for police in the Caribbean state of Quintana Roo says staff at the prison in Chetumal noticed that the woman seemed nervous and was pulling a black, wheeled suitcase that looked bulky.

Spokesman Gerardo Campos said Monday that prison guards checked the bag of 19-year-old Maria del Mar Arjona and found inmate Juan Ramirez Tijerina curled up inside in the fetal position.

Ramirez is serving a 20-year sentence for a 2007 conviction for illegal weapons possession.

Arjona was arrested and charges are pending.

In this photo taken Saturday, July 2, 2011, prison inmate Juan Ramirez Tijerina is curled inside a suitcase after he tried to escape from prison with the help of his girlfriend following a conjugal visit in Chetumal, Mexico. Ramirez is serving a 20-year sentence for a 2007 conviction for illegal weapons possession. His girlfriend was arrested and charges are pending. (AP Photo/SIPSE)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Three blasts in Mumbai

Three near-simultaneous explosions rocked Mumbai at rush-hour on Wednesday, killing at least 21 people and injuring 141 in what the government said appeared to be another terrorist strike in the city hit by a major attack nearly three years ago.

Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan said the latest attack killed 20 people, and home minister P Chidambaram said the toll was likely to rise.

Television footage showed dozens of police officials, several of them armed, at the sites of the explosion and at least one car with its windows shattered. A photograph showed victims of a blast at the Zaveri Bazaar crowding into the back of a cargo truck to be taken to a hospital.

Because of the close timing of the string of explosions, ``we infer that this was a coordinated attack by terrorists,'' home minister Palaniappan Chidambaram said.

One blast hit the crowded neighborhood of Dadar in central Mumbai. The others were at the Zaveri Bazaar, which is a famed jewelry market, and the busy business district of Opera House, both in southern Mumbai and several miles (kilometers) apart, police said.

All three blasts happened from 6:50pm. to 7pm., when all the neighborhoods would have been packed with office workers and commuters.

The 2008 attack killed 166 people and was blamed on Pakistan-based militant groups. Tensions escalated between the countries and peace talks were suspended. The talks recently resumed.

Soon after Wednesday's blasts were reported, Pakistan's government expressed distress on the loss of lives and injuries.

The blasts would mark the first major attack on Mumbai since the November 2008 violence, when 10 terrorists laid siege to the city for 60 hours, targeting two luxury hotels, a Jewish center and a busy train station. There was no immediate indication that Wednesday's blasts were part of a prolonged siege.

Mumbai has been on edge since then. In December, authorities deployed extra police on city streets after receiving intelligence that a Pakistan-based militant group was planning an attack over New Year's weekend. Police conducted house-to-house searches in some neighborhoods for four men who authorities believe entered the city to carry out a terrorist attack, and computer-aided photographs of the four suspects were released.

In March 2010, Mumbai police said they prevented a major terrorist strike after they arrested two Indian men, who, police said, were preparing to hit several targets in the city. Then in September, police issued a terror alert for the city during a popular Hindu festival.

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Infy's own social network

Infosys Limited may not be your friendliest neighbour or the most employee-friendly IT company around. But they sure are making amends.

'Infy Bubble', their recently launched internal social networking site is supposedly a platform for disgruntled Infoscions to vent on. The site mirrors Facebook and allows employees to connect across borders with colleagues as well as bicker about anything they want, said Nandita Gurjar, Vice President and Group Head, Human Resources, Infosys Limited.

She added that the site doesn't encourage personal attacks but it does welcome negative feedback about their bosses and peers. The site also allows them to share photographs and other stuff just like they do on Facebook, thus giving them a platform to engage themselves with other employees.

This is one of the internal PR exercises Infosys is conscientiously indulging in to salvage their image. The company has been battling severe criticism and high attrition rates lately.

And, despite rising wages hurting the IT bellwhether's profit margins, it isn't stopping its hiring momentum. Infosys that plans to hire 12,000 employees this quarter has already added 9,992 employees this year.

When asked if this would further affect their revenues, the management strongly responded by saying that they are going as per their yearly target of 45,000 new additions. With the improving business sentiment and revival in IT spends , IT firms are stepping up hiring to meet demand for their services.

The company today posted a 15.72 per cent jump in consolidated net profit to Rs 1,722 crore for the first quarter ended June 30, 2011. During the first quarter, Infosys and its subsidiaries saw over 7,000 employees leaving.

As we know, with increased hiring comes a high rate of attrition. But the company isn't really worried about it. Gurjar says, "This is the quarter when we normally expect employees to go for higher studies. 30% of the employees who have quit cited this reason."

She says, the company can't stop employees from pursuing higher studies. However, they are pondering on how to get them back with acquired skill sets. Gurjar says, "95% of the employees who quit to pursue higher studies actually want to come back. But since we have a structured process they have to undergo the complete interview cycle in the campuses. So may be in the near future we might have a policy where an employee can come back after getting MBA degrees or something else without getting into the complete interview cycle.".

But there is an interesting bit of information that Gurjar revealed. "34% per cent of our total employee workforce is woman. So in this quarter 32% of the woman employees who quit didn't cite any reason for quitting the job. They just wanted to take a break. Now this is something that we want to review."

While they ponder on what's working and what's not, the company is also planning an Infosys radio service through which the management will regularly interact with the employees. Looks like the company is engaging in some serious PR exercises with employees to build a few bridges. But will it curtail attrition? In true Infosys management lingo, "We might have to wait for the next quarter" for an answer.

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Friday, July 08, 2011

Maruti stops production of Swift hatchback, to relaunch new version by September

India’s largest carmaker Maruti has ended the production of its highly selling premium hatchback Swift, to make way for the next generation Swift, which will be launched in late August or early September.

Dealers have started accepting bookings for the new Swift. Maruti has codenamed the new Swift as YP8 and its trial runs are on in the Manesar plant, reports Economic Times.

According to a report in Business Standard, The car will come with 1.2-litre petrol and 1.3-litre diesel variants. It was reported that the new model, built on a slightly longer yet new platform, will be little extra roomy, lighter and return better mileage than the current generation Swift. Besides, engineers have also achieved a substantial reduction in the overall weight of the car by replacing the metal fuel tank with a plastic tank. This will improve its fuel efficiency by a little over 13 per cent. This will be the first major face-lift for the Swift since it was launched six years ago. Pricing details of the new car has not been shared by the company.

It was also reported that the new Swift will be produced at the company’s Manesar facility in Haryana, which has recently seen labour unrest. The petrol variant will return a mileage of around 20 km a litre, as compared to 17.9 km per litre certified by the Automotive Research Association of India. Similarly, the diesel model will deliver around 23.8 km per litre, as against the existing 21 km a litre.

The report stated that for installing the plastic fuel tanks, Maruti Suzuki India has tied up with France’s Plastic Omnium, the world’s largest manufacturer of plastic fuel tanks as it was mentioned that plastic fuel tanks are usually 25-35 per cent lighter than the conventional metal tanks. Besides, these are corrosion-free, durable, non-explosive and easily recyclable. Maruti Suzuki India has entered into a tripartite joint venture with Suzuki Motor Corporation and Plastic Omnium to manufacture fuel tanks at the Manesar facility. The new plastic tank manufacturing facility, Inergy Automotive Systems Manufacturing India Private Ltd, was inaugurated in Manesar on Monday.

According to the report, Maruti may also offer a four-speed automatic transmission option in the petrol version, besides the regular five-speed manual. The Swift which is available now in petrol, diesel and CNG versions and priced between Rs 3.9-5.5 lakh, sells close to 12,000 units every month. It recorded a growth of 21 per cent last year selling over 140,000 units as against 116,000 units sold in the previous year. The Swift accounts for about 25 per cent of the hatchback segment, and competes with Hyundai i20, Volkswagen Polo, Skoda Fabia, Nissan Micra, Fiat Punto and Toyota Liva. It was also mentioned that Maruti is also preparing to launch a new Swift Dzire, which will be cheaper and will probably hit the market by early 2012.

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Thursday, July 07, 2011

Facebook and Skype in video chat deal

Facebook will soon add Skype video chat as a new feature, aiming to add appeal to the world's already most used online social networking service while fending off increased competition from Google.

The agreement between the two companies was announced by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg at the company's California headquarters on Wednesday, deepening the company's relationship with Microsoft Corp, which is in the process of buying Skype to build its web presence.

Zuckerberg said Facebook has hit a record 750 million users. The new service could be a huge boost for Skype, which currently has about 145 million regular users.

The partnership comes as competition heats up in online social networking market, with Facebook and Google, as well as fast-growing companies such as Groupon and Twitter, vying for billions of dollars in online advertising revenue.

Facebook's Skype service, initially limited to one-to-one video chat, will be free. Financial details of the deal, if any, were not disclosed.

Tony Bates, Skype's chief executive, said Wednesday's deal with Facebook is only the start of a potentially lucrative partnership.

"For us, this makes a lot of business sense," said Bates. "We get huge reach. In the future we're talking about potentially also having Skype paid products available within the web format we saw here today."

In a phone interview later on Wednesday, Neil Stevens, the general manager of Skype's consumer business, said the company was planning on introducing a for-pay service that would allow users on Facebook to place calls to landline and mobile phones.

Stevens said he could not provide a timeframe for when such a service might be available.

Returning fire

Facebook, which also unveiled a group messaging function is returning fire from Google, which last week announced its newest social netweorking competition, dubbed 'Google+'.

While many of Google+'s social networking features are similar to those already available on Facebook, Google is generating interest with its video-conferencing function, which allows up to 10 people on the service to participate in a video call.

Zuckerberg hinted that video chat for multiple people could eventually be available on Facebook. But he said that most video chats today occur between two people anyway.

"We think this is awesome because we're using the best technology that's out there for doing video chat with the best social infrastructure that's out there to create some really cool new scenarios," said Zuckerberg.

Zuckerberg said Wednesday's announcements were the first of several to come in what he described as "launching season 2011".

Facebook's new Skype feature will likely benefit Microsoft, which owns 1.6 per cent of Facebook and announced its $8.5bn purchase of Skype in May.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Tight security for Amarnath yatra

Jammu: With the first batch of yatris scheduled to leave for the Amarnath cave shrine in Kashmir on Tuesday, over 4,000 pilgrims from all over the country arrived at the base camp in Jammu city on Monday amid tight security.

“Roughly over 4,000 yatris have arrived from various parts of the country. More are on their way,” Deputy Inspector-General of Police Farooq Khan said.

The first batch of pilgrims will leave today from the Yatri Niwas in Bhagwati Nagar, Jammu, base camp for the Amarnath yatra, for their journey to the shrine, which is located at a height of 13,500 feet.

DIG Khan, who welcomed the pilgrims at the newly set-up reception and assistance centre at Kunjwani on the outskirts of Jammu, said adequate security measures have been taken for the yatris' safety.

“We have asked pilgrims and their families to pray for peace to prevail in Jammu & Kashmir when they pay obeisance at the cave shrine,” the DIG said.

The security apparatus in and around the base camp has been operationalised, he said, adding that officers have been asked to remain vigilant and maintain coordination with various agencies to ensure smooth conduct of the yatra.

The Bhagwati Nagar Yatri Niwas was opened on Monday for registration of pilgrims seeking lodging. With a multi-tier security set-up, the Niwas spread across several hectares of land has started community kitchens, assistance booths, a joint control room, a registration centre as well as board and lodging areas.

Jammu and Kashmir Minister for Health and Family Welfare Sham Lal Sharma also visited the Bhagwati Nagar base camp to review the arrangements made for the yatra.

The Minister also asked the Deputy Commissioner, Jammu to personally monitor the yatra on a regular basis and ensure the pilgrims do not face any kind of inconvenience. (PTI)

Friday, June 24, 2011

Master blaster Sachin Tendulkar gets Nissan GT-R Supercar

The master blaster Sachin Tendulkar, who already owns the super luxury sports car Ferrari, has now received a new super sports car - Nissan GT-R Supercar. Powered by a 530 HP engine, the Japanese beauty costs $87,000 (Rs 4 crore approx). A red color model of the car was delivered to Tendulkar at his La Mar residence in Bandra, about two weeks back.

The car was brought from Dubai and two top engineers were flown in from there along with the car so that the car could be tuned in to the batting maestro presence.

In a statement given to TOI, a close friend of Cricketing maestro said, "Sachin is delighted with the arrival of his new car." He added that "It was tough for him to ensure that the car maintained its minimum run on Mumbai's roads. Also, he could not get out on the roads because people would easily identify the car. It wasn't used much for the same reason."

Sachin Tendulkar already has 2 BMWs and a Skoda, and the new Nisan GT-R Supercar will take the rally of his luxury cars to 4.

Centre's nod to Rs 919.76-cr highways project in Madhya Pradesh Centre's nod to Rs 919.76-cr highways project in Madhya Pradesh

NEW DELHI: Centre has given its approval to Rs 919.76-cr highways project in Madhya Pradesh under the National Highways Development Project (NHDP).

According to a government statement, “The Cabinet Committee on Infrastructure today approved four laning of Jabalpur-Lakhanadone section on National Highway 7 in Madhya Pradesh under NHDP Phase IV-A on Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer (DBFOT) basis in Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) toll mode of delivery.”

The net estimated project cost is Rs 919.76 crore, out of which Rs 143 crore will be used for land acquisition, rehabilitation and resettlement and pre-construction related works.

The net length of the project is 80.825 km. When the project gets completed, it will bring down the time and also the travel coat for traffic plying between Jabalpur and Lakhanadone. When this project gets completed, then it will surge the employment potential for the local labourers.

Monday, June 13, 2011


Now a days there is an increasing focus on alcohol related issues in Europe and the rest of the world .In the industrialized part of the world alcohol is the third largest risk factor for illnesses and accidents. So it has led to a greater need for measuring the degree of sobriety.

Our idea revolves around a small portable alcometer and a specially developed software. The system uses the mobile network to communicate results and allows the user to map his/hers alcohol burning rate. By taking advantage of today mobile and web-based services we can provide our clients with exciting opportunities. We create a relaxed relationship between the small portable alcohol sensor and the users that promotes an exchange of information with them.

World's thinnest LAPTOP launched by DELL

Dell officially launched the Adamo XPS, the highest-end version of its designer ultra portable. Dell says it expects to “begin taking orders and shipping the Adamo XPS in time for the holidays.” The ultra thin luxury laptop starts at $1,799. The system is championed as the thinnest notebook ever and measures just 0.39 inches at its thickest point. Dell accomplishes the feat by tucking most of the computer components into the display section and relying on a unique hinge that opens underneath and acts as a built-in prop .

In spite of its slimness, the notebook still has a removable battery, two USB ports and DisplayPort output but also weighs slightly more than its MacBook Air rival at 3.2 pounds.

When fully opened, the keyboard sits at maybe a 20-degree angle. It’s an unusual setup, but one that provides a more ergonomic typing experience than the average flat laptop keyboard. We also liked the keyboard’s metal keys and the reasonably large touchpad.

Sunday, June 12, 2011


Scientists have created the world’s first practical artificial leaf that can turn sunlight and water into energy, which they claim could pave the way for a cheaper source of power.

A team at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) says that the artificial leaf from silicon, electronics and various catalysts which spur chemical reactions within the device, can use sunlight to break water into hydrogen and oxygen which can then be used to create electricity in a separate fuel cell.

“A practical artificial leaf has been one of the Holy Grails of science for decades. We believe we have done it. And placed in a gallon of water and left in sun, these artificial leaves could provide a home in the developing world with basic electricity for a day,” Daniel Nocera, who led the team, said.

He added: “Our goal is to make each home its own power station. One can envision villages in India and Africa not long from now purchasing an affordable basic power system based on this technology.”

Both teams produced devices that combine a standard silicon solar cell with a catalyst developed three years ago by professor Daniel Nocera. When submerged in water and exposed to sunlight, the devices cause bubbles of oxygen to separate out of the water.

The next step to producing a full, usable artificial leaf, explains Nocera, the Henry Dreyfus Professor of Energy and professor of chemistry, will be to integrate the final ingredient: an additional catalyst to bubble out the water’s hydrogen atoms. In the current devices, hydrogen atoms are simply dissociated into the solution as loose protons and electrons. If a catalyst could produce fully formed hydrogen molecules (H2), the molecules could be used to generate electricity or to make fuel for vehicles. Realization of that step, Nocera says, will be the subject of a forthcoming paper.

The reports by the two teams were published in the journals Energy & Environmental Science on May 12, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on June 6. Nocera encouraged two different teams to work on the project so that each could bring their special expertise to addressing the problem, and says the fact that both succeeded “speaks to the versatility of the catalyst system.”

Nocera’s ultimate goal is to produce an “artificial leaf” so simple and so inexpensive that it could be made widely available to the billions of people in the world who lack access to adequate, reliable sources of electricity. What’s needed to accomplish that, in addition to stepping up the voltage, is the addition of a second catalyst material to the other side of the silicon cell, Nocera says.

The “leaf” system, by contrast, is “still a science project,” Nocera says. “We haven’t even gotten to what I would call an engineering design.” He hopes, however, that the artificial leaf could become a reality within three years

Friday, June 10, 2011


Hewlett-Packard Co, hoping to tap into the tablet market dominated by Apple Inc'siPad, said it will begin sales of its TouchPadcomputer in July.

The tablet will sell for $499.99 to $599.99 depending on storage capacity, Palo Alto, California-based Hewlett-Packard said in a statement today. Sales will begin in the US on July 1, followed by the UK, Ireland, France, Germany and Canada.

The first version of the TouchPad will have Wi-Fi technology to connect to the Internet through wireless hotspots. A future version of the device will connect through AT&T Inc (T)'s wireless network, Hewlett-Packard said.

Personal-computer makers are rushing into the tablet market as consumers buy the smaller, touchscreen devices and demand for traditional PCs slacks off. This week, research firm IDC lowered its estimate for growth in PC shipments this year to 4.2 percent from a February estimate of 7.1 percent, citing competition from tablets and smartphones as well as the sluggish economy.

The TouchPad will compete with the iPad, Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc's Xoom and the Research In Motion Ltd PlayBook.

Thursday, June 09, 2011


Karachi: Pakistani authorities are investigating a video that appears to show paramilitary forces shooting to death an unarmed teenage boy in the southern port city of Karachi, officials said Thursday.

The video aired repeatedly on TV, sparking another controversy for the Pakistani military, which is still reeling from criticism following the U.S. raid that killed Osama bin Laden last month.

Pakistani security forces are often accused of using excessive force and abusing ordinary citizens.

A spokesman for the paramilitary Rangers claimed its forces detained 18-year-old Afsar Shah because he was attempting to rob people in a park in Karachi on Wednesday. He said a gun was recovered from Shah and he was shot because he was reaching for a Ranger's rifle.Shah's brother, Salik, a local crime reporter, denied his brother was a robber and accused the Rangers of shooting an innocent person.

"It seems to be a case of routine high-handedness of the Rangers," Salik Shah said. "They misuse their powers by shooting on sight."
"The Rangers have no authority to kill any unarmed individual and they can fire only in self-defence," he said. "On completion of the inquiry, all those found responsible will be given strict punishment."

Friday, May 27, 2011

Tornados hit Oklahoma

Tornado disastersAt least six people were killed and many were injured by tornados at Oklahoma and Kansas City that began last Tuesday which forced offices and schools to close early. Residents should take tornado warnings and reports very seriously said Mary Fallin Governor of Oklahoma. NWS warned during the storm that it’s an extremely dangerous and life-threatening situation.

The citizens of Oklahoma City knew that the tornadoes were coming. About 1,200 people were packed in a shelter in Newcastle, a community near Oklahoma City, during the storm, said Oklahoma City Manager Nick Nazar. The city has been struck by more tornadoes than any other city in the United States. People were expecting for the worst to happen after the disastrous twister outbreak in the South that had a death toll of more than 300 people and last Sunday’s storm that left 122 people dead in Joplin.

The Oklahoma tornadoes were weaker than the other tornadoes but up-to-the-minute reporting of the developing weather system kept the people informed of the danger. Television networks had their helicopters broadcast live footages when the storm approached the city with a population of 1.2 million.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

New Technology in iPhone

EmergInfo has released on iPhone and all Android mobile devices which helps to give information about car accident and DUI. The EmergInfo App is free and is the only application that provides instant emergency information and emergency notifications to family and friends, for those who have been involved in an accident or a DWI / DUI arrest.

EmergInfo was formed by lawyers with the idea of creating a simple and trouble-free way for people to get emergency information for recording accident information and make immediate decisions that could affect a criminal DWI / DUI case. Most importantly, the EmergInfo App notifies loved ones of your situation by the use of email and text message, including your cell number and GPS location so that immediate help can be dispatched or proper local legal help can be contacted.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Tropical storm Aere kills 15 in Philippines

Fifteen people were killed and nearly 70,000 people were forced from their homes as tropical storm Aere pummelled the Philippines

The death toll from Aere, which hit on Sunday, jumped from nine, with six more people reported killed in floods, landslides and road accidents, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Centre said. However, after two days of heavy rains across the main island of Luzon, the storm had weakened and was exiting the northern Philippines this morning, according to the national weather bureau.

"The storm is moving away from the country in a north, northeast direction,adding it was expected to move close to Japan's south-west coast by Thursday. It said Aere's maximum sustained winds had fallen to 65km/h, from 85km/h on Sunday. The disaster agency said that nearly 70,000 people had been forced to leave their storm-hit homes on Luzon, and the initial estimate of damages to the farming sector was more than $US2.7 million.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Osama had some sort of support network in Pakistan: Obama

Osama bin Laden, who lived in a compound in Abbottabad for six years, had "some kind of support" infrastructure inside Pakistan and this aspect needs to be investigated, US President Barack Obama has said. His comments came as his top security advisor said there was no evidence so far that the Pakistan Government knew about the al Qaeda chief`s presence in the country.

"We think that there had to be some sort of support network for bin Laden inside of Pakistan," obama said. The US called on government of Pakistan to conduct an investigation into how Osama was able to live so long in a military cantonment area of Pakistan, in an affluent suburb of Islamabad. We don`t know whether there might have been some people inside of [Pakistan`s] government, people outside of government, and that`s something that we have to investigate and, more importantly, the Pakistani government has to investigate," Obama said.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Al-Qaida aspired to attack US train on 11/9/2011

Al-Qaida considered attacking U.S. trains on the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, according to an initial look at DVDs, computers and other documents seized at the raid on Osama bin Laden's home.

The information about a possible train plot is the first intelligence revealed from the trove of material found in the attack on bin Laden's compound. Officials said they found what they call "aspirational" items — things al-Qaida operatives were interested in trying to make happen. A government advisory obtained by NBC News and sent Tuesday to the rail industry said that as far back as February 2010, al-Qaida was contemplating "an operation against trains at an unspecified location in the United States on the 10th anniversary" of the 9/11 attacks.

One option, the advisory said, was trying to tip a train by tampering with the rails so that the train would fall off the track at either a valley or on a bridge. Such an attempt would probably only work once, the material in bin Laden's house said, because tilting or tampering with the rails would be spotted, the advisory said. Other material mentions a desire to target big mass-transit hubs, an interest long understood because of the history of al-Qaida attacks on rail targets in Spain, the United Kingdom and India.

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Wednesday, May 04, 2011

With bin Laden dead, Obama has to turn to the Mideast

Nothing will help the American right wing, the Israeli right wing or Fox News now; the assassination of Osama bin Laden has given U.S. President Barack Obama a decided boost.

Now that bin Laden is dead, Obama is seen not as a geek but as a killer, not as a softy but as a fairly tough leader. The young man has successfully completed his coming-of-age ceremony. Combined with the burgeoning recovery of the economy and the president’s movement toward the political center, bin Laden’s death has turned Obama into a strong and authoritative leader. If he doesn’t make any big mistakes in the coming year, chances are good that he’ll continue living in the White House until 2016.

But Obama insists on making big mistakes. His Middle East policy is inconsistent and incoherent. His guiding principles are obtuse and bizarre. He supported the removal of Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak from office but grants immunity to Syria’s Bashar Assad. He went to war to avoid a bloodbath in Libya, but won’t raise a finger to stop the massacres in Syria.

Weak leadership and a lack of moral clarity continue to characterize Obama. Instead of leading the Arab world to a good place, he’s being dragged along with it to a bad one.

One problem is Iran. The Arab spring has caused a situation in which no Sunni power except for Saudi Arabia now stands in the way of the ayatollahs. The revolutions in Arab countries have also improved the economic situation in Tehran by pushing up the price of oil. Improved strategic and economic positioning allow Iran to rush toward a nuclear reactor and erode America’s hegemony in the region.

Turkey poses another problem. In mid-June, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is expected to win reelection in a landslide victory. Right after that, the temporary respite he’s granted himself will end. Encouraged by the scope of his mandate to govern, this ambitious Islamist will try to build a neo-Ottoman Empire. He’ll work with the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas and Iran to undermine the U.S. foothold in the Middle East.

The third problem is Palestine. As everyone knows, another Black September is in the offing. Palestinian Authority President Mohammed Abbas is provoking Obama by his plan to undermine Israeli stability with the expected international recognition of a Palestinian state and his reconciliation with bin Laden’s supporters in Gaza. If a Hamas-Fatah government leads to PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad’s disappearance from the scene, the result will be the collapse of American’s peace policy.

The fourth problem, Egypt, is the most severe of all. Egypt is likely to go bankrupt by the end of the year because of the loss of income from tourism, the strengthening of the army’s monopoly and the new government’s inability to be anything other than populist. Mubarak was bad? The White House will be longing for him way before Christmas. The economic growth he created will contract. Poverty will turn into shortages, shortages into despair, despair into protest. The army will not be able to withstand the disappointment and rage.

Egypt will become a black hole.

There are no simple solutions to these four problems, none of which are Obama’s doing. Perhaps he hasn’t offered a genuine answer to any of these strategic problems because he did not understand that when he opened the Pandora’s box of the Middle East, he became responsible for what emerged from it. While Obama exhibited professional determination in taking care of Osama, he was hesitant and amateurish when it came to the fundamental problems of the Middle East.

Egypt is the most pressing problem. Two years ago Obama gave a very impressive speech in Cairo. Three months go he encouraged the revolution there. But now the U.S. president has disappeared. Where is the American plan to rebuild the Egyptian nation? Where is the international initiative to save the Egyptian economy? Where is the effort to do on the banks of the Nile what is being done in Ramallah?

The summer of 2011 is the summer of Barack Hussein Obama. If he does not stabilize the Middle East this summer, a regional avalanche will take place by summer’s end. Obama will bear personal responsibility if the Arab spring turns into a cold and bleak winter.

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Arunachal CM’s body recovered, Union Cabinet to meet today

After a five-day long intense search, the Army with the help of locals, recovered the body of Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu from a place between Kyela and Lobothang in the mountainous region of the state on Thursday morning.

Confirming the development, Union Home Minister P Chidambaram informed newsmen that Union Cabinet is all set to meet in New Delhi at 11.30 am today to discuss the current political situation in the state and to possibly elect a new leader.

“The body of Arunachal Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu and four others have been recovered and the government is making all necessary arrangements to bring the bodies to Tawang,”. The meeting is expected to be attended by central ministers – V Narayanaswamy, Mukul Wasnik, and Bijoy Krishna Handique. Two senior All India Congress Committee leaders would also attend the meeting.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Pakistan's president denies harboring bin Laden

Pakistan's president starved of proposals his country's security forces may have wrapped in cotton wool Osama bin Laden previous to he was killed by American forces, and said their collaboration with the United States helped locate the world's most wanted man.

Asif Ali Zardari said, though, that Monday's operation in opposition to bin Laden was not conducted with Pakistani forces — confirms accounts by U.S. officials that Islamabad was not involved in the raid and did not even know in relation to it until it was over.

His comments in a Washington Post view piece Monday were Pakistan's first official retort to the doubts by U.S. lawmakers and other critics, which could further sour relations stuck between Islamabad and Washington at a crucial point in the war in Afghanistan.

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Al Qaeda No.2 Zawahri most likely to succeed bin Laden

Egyptian born doctor and medical doctor Ayman al-Zawahri is al Qaeda's second-in-command probable to do well Osama bin Laden subsequent his killing in a firefight with U.S. forces in Pakistan. Zawahri has been the brains at the back bin Laden and his al Qaeda network, and at times its most public face, continually disapproving the United States and its allies in video messages.

In the latest monitored by the SITE astuteness Group last month, he urged Muslims to fight NATO and American forces in Libya. "I want to direct the awareness of our Muslim brothers in Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, and the rest of the Muslim countries, that if the Americans and the NATO forces enter Libya then their neighbors in Egypt and Tunisia and Algeria and the rest of the Muslim countries should rise up and fight both the private army of Gaddafi and the rest of NATO," Zawahri said.

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Sunday, May 01, 2011

Osama bin Laden, the face of terror, killed in Pakistan

The most prominent face of terror in America and beyond, Osama Bin Laden, has been killed in Pakistan, U.S. officials said Sunday night. Bin Laden was the leader of al Qaeda, the terrorist network behind the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States. U.S. officials said that their forces have the body of bin Laden.

The enormity of the destruction -- the World Trade Center's towers devastated by two hijacked airplanes, the Pentagon partially destroyed by a third hijacked jetliner, a fourth flight crashed in rural Pennsylvania, and more than 3,000 people killed -- gave bin Laden a global presence.

The Saudi-born zealot commanded an organization run like a rogue multinational firm, experts said, with subsidiaries operating secretly in dozens of countries, plotting terror, raising money and recruiting young Muslim men -- even boys -- from many nations to its training camps in Afghanistan.

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Friday, April 29, 2011

Rescue efforts transition to recovery in hard-hit Alabama

Hopes of finding trapped survivors dwindled Friday evening in Alabama, the epicenter of storms that obliterated neighborhoods and towns and claimed scores of lives across the South. Gov. Robert Bentley, speaking in Birmingham, said the long road to recovery will now begin. "We've gotten past the rescue stage," Bentley said. "We have begun the recovery stage."

Earlier Friday, President Barack Obama toured rubble-strewn neighborhoods in Tuscaloosa, declaring the devastation brought by a series of powerful storms and tornadoes was beyond anything he had ever seen. The storms killed at least 326 people in six states and left entire neighborhoods in ruins. Obama promised expedited federal aid to states affected by the tornadoes.

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Thursday, April 28, 2011

U.S. violent storms killed more than 250 lives

Tornadoes caused huge disaster across the southern U.S and killing more than 250 people. Reports state that this particular tornado is likely to be the deadliest outbreak in the US since 1974 when 307 were killed. Alabama took the heaviest losses in that event as well, with 77 casualties. More than 250 tornadoes touched down across the South between April 25 and 27 which has been reported by weather channel.

The worst- hit areas are Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, and Virginia. States of emergency have been declared in those areas and governors called out the National Guard to help with rescue and cleanup operations. A few days before Northern Arkansas and St. Louis, Missouri, were also affected with southern Missouri also dealing with significant flooding after a breached levee.

The storms also were destructive in the Griffin/Barnesville area. One couple who attended the Griffin First Church of the Nazarene was killed and their family members were injured and hospitalized with some undergoing surgery Thursday morning. In Alabama, the 90,000-strong city of Tuscaloosa was hit hardest, with at least 37 people killed, including some students, authorities said.

A nuclear plant in Alabama lost power because of the severe weather. The agency said in a statement that the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff is monitoring the situation at the Browns Ferry nuclear power plant after the site lost offsite power early Wednesday evening due to severe storms that damaged power lines in the area. The disastrous storms have caused widespread power shortage, with approximately one million customers without electricity.