This month’s issue www.thebrowsermagazine.com Reach Media UK
• Internet sensations –Dub FX • Digital News
• Alan Sugars review
Our first issue was a good taste of what we have in the pipeline. In our August issue here, we are rolling out a more entertaining aspect of the web. We got a lot of suggestions which will be added to our growing wishlist. We intend to fully dissect the web, and showcase all aspects of this explosive online world. We now have on board, great web publishers, and have access to new tech and gadet stuff, insider news of the gaming world, and an experts eye view of the social network. You’re welcome!
• App reviews
• Tablet reviews
• Prince Charles Facebook • Every One’s a publisher now • Ezine reviews • podcast heroes • Wacky pics • Phone reviews • Wild Ebay • Internet radio • Life as Globe freelance globe trotter • Freebees
• Ebook reviews • 5 of the Best Gadgets and Travel • Internet for idiots • Ten great shorts • Internet art Editorial Sandy Basset - News editor Zachary Saumanahaii - Staff writer Suki Hima - Contributor Anil Dauched - Contributor Sola Akinfie - Editor Andy Hargreaves - Staff writer Gary Hammond - Webreview editor Mishelle Waterman - Staff writer Catherine Monreal - Staff writer Z. Williams - Staff writer Helen souza - Deputy Editor Daniel Baker - Art Editor/Graphic Work Chris Reynolds - Sub-Editor Yemi Daniels - Admin Coordinator Christopher Williams - Staff writer
Commercial Distribution Amber wide
Sales manager Adam Scope
Advertising manager Jane Mitzef
Online manager Kofi Saunders
Marketing manager Franck Artridge
Managing Director Sola Akinfie
YouTube hero: Dub FX By Sola Akinfie
Meet Dub FX, a definate internet sensation thanks to the worlds largets video club - Youtube Even semi–old fogies like us at The Browser Magazine have to hats off for Benjamin Stafford, aka Dub FX. He’s a street genius who puts Simon Cowell's X Factor to shame. Dub’s musical style may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but you have to give props for his acoustic chops. Devoid of manufactured music’s sameness, Dub FX is a legend in the making. His tunes have been on the receiving end of some DIY polish. Looping sounds meet heavy emphasis on sub frequencies. Meanwhile, the tempo ranges from 138 145Bpm - whatever that means. Dub's music gained popularity when Bristol filmmaker, BD, spotted him performing ‘Love Someone’ on the street, whipped out his camera and uploaded the resulting footage to YouTube. Nine million views later… Dub FX has opted out of the welltrod path of music promotion. Instead, he favours word of mouth
and social networking - nothing better than buying your bread from the actual baker. Or fiancée of the baker, in this case - she can be seen flogging his CD to passersby who stop to take in our man’s performance. Dub FX has appeal aplenty. His signature – an intro to how he creates the music - is a great way to get the crowds gathering. His reggae-like dark sounds and haunting rhythm is further testimony to the wild talent within. His music can be compared to the tastier stuff of Delerium mixed with Faithless. His rough-living looks and busker image adds to his unique identity. We secretly hope he doesn’t get rich too quick and start flashing his crib on MTV - YouTube is just fine, ta. Speaking of which, watching the Dub FX YouTube clips is worth it just to see portly housewives gobsmacked at the gyrating madman. Fast for-
ward five years and their kids will probably be begging to buy his album. Actually, it’s already happening. At Woodstock Poland the 400,000-odd in attendance got a taste of the Dub FX experience, as did Glastonbury. From Kiev to Canada, throughout Europe, and in our very own Camden Town, Dub FX has been spotted performing his free street show. Dub FX’s collaborations to date include co-founding label Convoyun. ltd, and working with music guru Glade Kettle (Distro)(aka Sirius).
Natalie Chandler and Chris Williams
Internet Explorer users are NOT idiots In early August Canadian company ApTiquant released findings that claimed users of Microsoft’s web browser, Internet Explorer, had much lower IQs than people who used other browsers, like Firefox, Chrome and Opera. The research claimed to be based on an online IQ test run on ApTiquant’s website, which also detected what browser the respondent was using. According to Piquant, Internet Explorer users averaged an IQ in the mid-80s, placing them smack-bang in Stupidsville. Firefox and Chrome users had average IQs, according to the study, and Opera users were the brainiest of the bunch. The BBC, CNN, CBS, Daily Mail and lots of other news organisation reported dutifully on the results of AqTiquants survey, ignoring their quoted experts who said that IQ scores in the low 80s would almost equate to mental retardation. You can probably guess where this is going. Yep, the whole story was a hoax. AqTiquant was a fake company, and all the news outlets had to publish retractions. Apparently the perpetrators of the hoax are now being sued by angry Internet Explorer users. It begs the question... exactly which web browsers were being used by the journos who failed to spot such an obvious wind-up? http://takeapollandwin.com/favorite-browser/
Google plus – great timing? Early adopters have been sniffing at Google+ like a backpacker trying to get one more day out of their last clean t-shirt. Is it any good? What will folks around me say? Maybe if I turn it inside out… OK, so we took the analogy too far, but hopefully you’re picking up what we’re putting down. Boasting a reported 10+ billion users within weeks of launch, Google has a lot riding on its latest social networking effort. Early reviews are mixed – public opinion suggests that the desktop version is weak, while the mobile version is premium brew. Oh, and that Google+ looks awfully familiar… Reuters reports: “Consensus seems to be that it’s a lot like Facebook and that it is an improvement over Google’s past social media efforts, Buzz and Wave.” Technologist Esther Dyson told TechCrunch that the Facebook doppelganger thing isn’t necessarily a negative. “They have an advantage following Facebook,” she said. By which she means Google can look at what’s ho-hum about Facebook and improve upon it. Like its lack of differentiation between friends, colleagues, and stinky old exes. Google+ has attempted to solve this problem via its asymmetrical Circles - the user decides where to put people, be it the ‘Ignore These Peeps’ Circle or the ‘Stalk Them’ Circle. Where Google+ may come unstuck, Dyson said, is if it attempts to differentiate for the sake of it. The key is to “try to differentiate it without marginalizing.”
Hacking MasterCard – “priceless” MasterCard may come to regret its decision not to play nice with infamous spiller of secrets, WikiLeaks. Hacktivist group Anonymous recently felled the credit card giant’s website in protest of the company’s refusal to do business with Julian Assange and his band of merry muckrakers. Anonymous is associated with the recently disbanded LulzSec, who claimed responsibility for a spate of attacks on corporations and government agencies including Sony, CIA, US Senate and Nintendo. “MasterCard.com down! that’s what you get when you mess with @wikileaks @Anon Central and the enter community of lulz loving individuals :D,” This is the second time MasterCard has fallen foul of hackers in recent months. In December 2010, hackers opened a can of virtual whoopass on the company, as well as Post Finance and PayPal, for blocking WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks took to Twitter at the time to acknowledge the freeze out: “The unlawful banking blockade against WikiLeaks in 6th month: The culprits: VISA, MasterCard, PayPal, Bank of America, and Western Union.” The United States of Apple It’s time to sell any US Treasury bonds you may have lying around and buy-up shares in Apple. The manufacturer of the iPod, iPad and Mac now officially has more cash to spend than the US Government. According to the BBC, (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-14340470) Apple’s most recent financial results revealed a massive $76.4bn sloshing around in its reserves, while the US Treasury Department has to make do with a pitiful $73.7bn. Steve Jobs for president! The big question is what on earth will Apple do with all that money? Some commentators have pointed out that, if the company used its reserves to leverage loans, it could become one of the most powerful entities in the financial sector. Imagine that – banking with the I bank. Of course, there’s always the option of buying-up some cheap islands in the South Pacific and starting up the United States of Apple – a utopia full of Starbucks coffee houses, Apple Stores and an official ban on Microsoft products. http://thesingularityprinciple.blogspot.com/2011/06/big-apple.html
Real life virtual friends. A University of Colorado study has discovered why you may be unfriended on Facebook. The bad news? It’s probably because you’re annoying. PhD student Christopher Sibona surveyed more than 1,500 Facebook users on Twitter to discover that too frequent or unimportant status updates are most likely to make people’s unfriending finger itch. The number two reason for unfriending is postings about politics, religion and the like. “They say not to talk about religion or politics at office parties, and the same thing is true online,” Sibona said. Alarmingly, making racists comments only rounds out the top three reasons for being unfriended, along with making crude remarks or posting inappropriate content.
The study also indicated that 26.9 per cent of folk decided to unfriend someone due to their real-life behaviour, while 57 percent of those surveyed unfriended for online ac-
The unfriended masses’ handle their transition to Dumpsville in different ways, Sibona observed. Some respondents were amused, while others reported being deeply traumatised. http://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/metroplus/article664106.ece
The Murdoch twitch Oh the irony. Rupert Murdoch, owner of some the world’s most scandalicious publications, has come a cropper due to the dirt-bag tactics of his own people. When the ‘mwa ha ha’ voice finally quietens down, we suspect we’ll actually feel a smidge sorry for him. In the ongoing saga that is Murdoch gate, the Aussie octogenarian and son James have been hauled before the Commons Select Committee to give evidence on the phone hacking. Then there’s the fact he’s haemorrhaging members of his inner circle all over the shop. Senior execs Rebecca Brooks and Les Hinton have both taken up residence in Dumpsville since the drama came to light. Murdoch senior and junior claim to have been totes in the dark about the “serious wrongdoings” that involved a mere 3,870 people. Former News Corp legal chief Tom Crone has called pants on fire. So is this sayonara to all the sleazy tabloids that are as much a part of our Sunday hangover as the Hollyoaks omnibus and dirty Chinese takeout? Those in the know seem to think so, but the British public is sceptical. An anonymous fella told Yahoo! News: “Murdoch is riding low, but in eight months when no one remembers this anymore ... he will come out, a dangerous man, and inflict some payback.” Dumbing down Remember a time before Google? Nope, us neither. And it appears there may be a scientific reason for that… According to a new study from Columbia University (smart folk who remember loads of stuff), our increased reliance on Googling is changing the way our grey matter organises and retains information. But tempting as it is to blame brain morphing on our inability to recall names or the many reasons why we should never drink tequila, the study claims search engines and the like have only impacted our “transactive memory,” or externally stored memories that we can access when we need to. Columbia University Assistant Professor of Psychology, Betsy Sparrow, said in a statement: [http://news.columbia.edu/research/2490] “Our brains rely on the Internet for memory in much the same way they rely on the memory of a friend, family member or co-worker.” The research suggests humanoids are now so confident that the internet can do the remembering for us, we only bother storing stuff we think we can’t find online. Am-Google-Nesia, anyone? Happy birthday to you... This August saw the World Wide Web turn 20 years old. That’s right, the first ever web page was erected on August 6th, 1991, by British scientist Tim Berners Lee. Before that fateful day, the internet was just a bunch of computers that could communicate with each other, without any simple way to publish or view content. Berner’s first ever web page (which you can see here: http://www.w3.org/ History/19921103-hypertext/hypertext/WWW/TheProject.html ) began with the following sentence: “The World Wide Web (W3) is a wide-area hypermedia information retrieval initiative aiming to give universal access to a large universe of documents.” Ah, how quaint! Who would have thought, 20 years later, that simple web page would have blossomed into well over a trillion web pages? Now the internet sees over 48 hours of video uploaded to YouTube per minute, has connected over 500 million people over Facebook, changed the way we shop and sparked revolutions in the Arab world. Of course, the web has also given us plentiful amounts of porn, spam, scams and other unsavoury things (all of which are forgivable as soon as you try to contemplate a world without email). What will the World Wide Web look like in another 20 years? Will we still use Google? Will Facebook have connected the entire world? Will we still suffer spam? Who knows? But for now let’s just be thankful Mr Berners Lee decided to stick up that web page in 1991 and, more importantly, made the technology completely free so other people could do the same. All together now... ‘Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you...’
When my advisors Nick and Margaret brought this contraption to me, I thought ‘That’s a sturdy picture frame’ – only to be told it was a computer! If one of my designers had come into the boardroom with this, giving it the big I am, I’d have put a call out for a village missing its idiot. The first thing that gets on my tits is this idea of people’s grubby hands on the screen swiping away at images and text. Just think of all those germs having an annual party conference on your overpriced tablet! Probably cost me a fortune in antibacterial wipes. And don’t get me started on people using them to read books. For heaven’s sake, what’s that all about? Personally, I can’t stand the way that Steve Jobs fella presents the things like he’s Moses with the ten commandments. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great business sense creating a platform where he can earn residual income apart from selling the damn things – I’ll give him that. It’s the silly users that amaze me. iPads, iPhones, I this and I that. What’s next? iSore: a device that makes Ann Widdecombe look like Kate Moss? The only thing I think they’re good for are quick mobile product catalogues to be used at trade fairs. Instead, the device tries to do too much. Whatever happened to simple, effective functionality? When we came out with our Amstrad PC units, we simply sold computers, not giving it fancy names like iCompute, or iCrashed. Easy to use and not filled with bugs and irrelevant programs; none of the app for this, and app for that malarkey. Now let’s do a review on this thing. I haven’t got all day: Design I’m sick and tired about this modern notion that everything slim and smaller is best. For the life of me, I can’t understand the fascination. The thing looks like a flyer as far as I’m concerned. If I want to use a computer, I like to feel I’m clicking away at something real, not touching and pointing and swiping on some sort of metal clipboard just to look cool. I spotted these suited fancy fellas in the local Starbucks waving these pad books, like some sort of mobile courier device. They looked like dodgy UPS men fiddling entries for misplaced parcels on the go. Don’t like the slim design, the size or the weight either. Fancy having that on my desk –the damn thing is begging to be nicked. Price It seems the fact that we’re in a recession has eluded the chaps at Apple. As far as I’m concerned, you fellas are lemons for coming up with a starting price of £399. I struggle to understand why I would want an electronic postcard costing me 400 quid. You haven’t done your homework! Remember that looming shadow always right behind you? It’s called competition; other devices like Blackberry Playbook – or is it Playschool? - and Toshiba Thrive are all doing similar **** to you. Your potential customers are going to desert you like yesterday’s garbage. Function These things are supposed to give your desktop a run for its money. Hogwash! I tried putting an email together and it was like a session at Crystal Maze. No copy
and paste, and switching between tasks to send attachments was a nightmare. You don’t just rush to market with some Fairyland idea, you think about the user interface. Not impressed! Apple claims that, at last count, 15 billion apps had been downloaded from the App Store. Of course you need to download a ton of stuff – otherwise the device is just a coal slate. You would have to download an app to fart with these things. I would rather have my PC ready for instant use as opposed to visiting that dreaded App Store just so I can type a letter. It’s tedious, crafty and unnecessary. Another awful tits-up is the iPad 2's memory loss. When it has multiple web pages open, it has to reload from the start to swap from page to page. This can be a right balls-up if you're surfing outside the office or other places with dodgy connectivity. Pages that were fully loaded can disappear into thin air when going through the Blackwall tunnel, for instance. Another thing that got me going was this Facetime nonsense – supposed to be a video calling facility that allows you to chat with people using a front or rear facing camera. I ask you, who wants to see your pot-ugly face in crystal clear quality while having a conversation? I can do that quite easily with my other fad – the iPhone 4. I mean, it’s just silly to be doing that first thing in the morning. Have you seen what I look like when I get out of bed?
In conclusion, Mr Jobs (what kind of name is that anyway?), don’t come in here with your sweat shirt, suit, shirt or tieless prancing around with these clipboards for me to waste my investment. Go back and give me something that makes sense. I hear you’re coming soon with an iPhone 5. What’s that going to do, cook my dinner? Not this time, my friend. I’ve heard enough. You’re fired!
App Reviews By David Simmons
‘There’s an app for that’ isn’t just a catchy sound bite. These days, whatever your peccadillo, chances are some nerdy boffin is already catering to it in code. We have here some great and useful ones, and we also take a look at some so silly you want to try them out. We give them the five thumbs rating for the absurd idea . Easy Metal Detector by Androidik, £0.89 For lovers of buried treasure (or spare change…), the Easy Metal Detector app for Android is you all over. Your smartphone uses something called a magnetometer for its compass function – who knew? Anyhoo, said magnetometer helps you find lost coinage and other assorted metal goodies. The catch? It’s no where near as powerful as the metal detectors you see wielded by blokes in socks and sandals along Blackpool Beach. The current version’s rated a whopping 4/5 stars on the Market.
Compatible with Android Available in the Android Market Place
www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYu2cPRo3tQ (See video)
Confession: A Roman Catholic App by Little i Apps, LLC, £1.25 Our first thought when we discovered this gem of an app was ‘tee hee hee’. Then we realised that sort of behaviour has ‘Fast-track to Hell’ written all over it. The Confession app was developed in partnership with loads of Catholic big-wigs. Its iTunes blurb describes it as “the perfect aid for every penitent.” Now if that doesn’t scream ‘good time’ we don’t know what does. Alas, the Confession App doesn’t replace penance – instead, it helps you to order your sins.
Compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad Available in the App Store
www.youtube.com/watch?v=pZ6thJ7aHoA (See video) Profanity For iPhone by Nyx Digital Ltd, £0.59 And here we were sweetly oblivious to the fact that there are over 3 million profane phrases in the whole entire world, let alone in one itty-bitty iPhone app. Built with the potty-mouthed punter in mind, Profanity’s… er, profanity could even make a hardened dock worker blush. Give the app a wee shake to access any number of dirty-bird words. Plus, share the sweary love on Twitter, you vacant clumsy boob!
Compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad Available in the App Store
www.youtube.com/watch?v=oikxF2u7S04 (See video) Translator For Cats by Ronald Bell, £0.69 Meow. We now know that mean’s ‘Hello’ thanks to the Translator For Cats app. Obviously, this app is a whole load of boohockey, but it still makes us giggle. Cat Translator is a Cat-to-English translator that allows your cat to speak your language. Unless your cat language is the language of love – in which case we suggest calling the RSPCA, stat. We heart us the app’s disclaimer: ‘May not accurately reflect your cat’s emotions.’ Bless.
Compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad Available in the App Store
Easy Metal Detector by Androidik, £0.89 The Moron Test: It’s not quite as nasty as it sounds. The Moron Test app, available on all Apple’s offerings, is the App Store’s leading brainteaser. It’s been on the number one list for a decent period of time. Give yourself a taste of tough love as you strive to graduate from moron to genius. And once you’ve mastered the brain ticklers (or wrangled in a nerd to give you the answers…) share your results with family, friends, and those teachers who suggested you become a postman.
Compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad Available in the App Store
www.youtube.com/watch?v=JX-iu61c1Bw (See video) Unicorn Disco Lite by Unicorn Labs, Free What could be funnier than video of you and your friends dancing like nuff-nuffs? Er, how about you and your friends frocked up as Santa and a tiger dancing like nuff-nuffs? Not convinced? Well we’re afraid the New York Times will have to disagree with you there, sonny-Jim. “The makers of Unicorn Shots...have spawned another whimsical hit,” they said. So there. Create characters from your own photos, then make them dance to your tune.
Compatible with Android Available in the Android Market Place
www.youtube.com/watch?v=mc2tU2IVNdU (See video) GingerBooth by Bluebear Technologies, £0.69 Think you’d make a fetching ginger ninja? Or p’haps one of your mates? As luck would have it, there’s an app for that. Just upload a picture and let GingerBooth work its magic. In next to no time you and Lindsay Lohan will be like peas and carrots. Or like carrots and carrots, natch. Want proof that the GingerBooth app’s worth its retail price of 69p? It’s the number one paid entertainment app in the UK, Norway, Denmark and Sweden.
Compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad Available in the App Store
Virtual Bitchslap by SweetMerch, Free Virtual Bitchslap is for those days when someone’s annoying you so much they make your palms itch. Now we want to manage your expectations: this free Android app has clocked a mere two stars on Android Market. But if you’re looking for a passive aggression quick-fix - minus the lawsuit, that is - you could do worse. In the Android Market, the developer says there’s more fixes to come. Maybes hold out for smoother animation – if the red mist doesn’t descend before then…
Compatible with Android Available at Android Market
How to Tie a Tie by ArtelPlus, Free You want to look the business for your job interview/hot date/wedding, right? Except you’ve not tied a tie since secondary school, and even then it was one of those elasticised jobbies. Where’s dear old mum when you need her? If running home to the ‘rents isn’t an option, download How to Tie a Tie for Android. It’ll demonstrate all you need to know in less than a jiffy (we timed it on our jiffy watch). It doesn’t actually show you what the finished knot is supposed to look like – but we reckon if you’ve not strangled yourself you’ve probably got the idea.
Compatible with Android Available from the Android Market
Employers - The Queen (heaven help one) Philosophy - Tell it as it may be. Religious views Church of England, what do you think! Political views - Sack the lot of the scallywags. Favourite quotations - Bugger the table plan, give me my dinner. Arts and entertainment Music - Sex Pistols – “laughter out loud” It would be the sound of my own voice actually. Books - How to hunt foxes By Rupert Fairfax Hornby. Movies - Deer Hunter, The Last Monarch. Activities & Interests - Fox or Corgi hunting, Clay Pigeon shooting. Wall Info Photos Events
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Write something… Prince Phillip
This just warms ones cockles, great pleasure to see another concrete monstrosity being torn down, pure urban filth, probably built by Polish builders.
Liz the Queen
Yesterday at 2:43pm · Like · Comment · Share Prince Charles and 6 others like this. Prince Charles Too right dad, off with the lot of them, thatʼs what I say.. Yesterday at 2:57pm · Like
Write a comment… Prince Phillip is now friends with Robert Mugabe and Chris Eubank Prince Phillip
Managed to sneak out of the palace gates, to try out this Turkish culinary establishment at Tower Bridge. Young Harry was right – the kebabs were scrumptious, even if they were ridden with germs, and that Turkish fellow serving, looked the worse for wear. Itʼs still a definite improvement to the repetitive and pompous palace food.
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August 8 at 3:54pm · Like · Comment · Share John Prescott likes this. Vanessa Feltz Oh – I sneaked in there the other day – the Doner kebab was so delightfully scrumptious, I shoved it down with baby sham and then cycled all the way home. Your majesty must continue to share knowledge of all these delightful eateries. Disguising myself just to get my big Mac is just too much hassle. August 8 at 5:23pm · Like
The Queen Phillip you swine, what did we agree on last week? None of that outdoorsy feeding. One is not amused.” Your excuse about taking the corgis for walkies is codswallop. The poor things were found locked up in the east wing pantries. You are officially grounded. Yesterday at 5:01pm · Like
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Phwoooah! One does develop a sturdy wedding tackle with that scullery maid. Wouldnʼt mind a bit of that crumpet. Shame about that ghastly Northern accent – the woman is tasty but comes with eventual bowel dysfunction.That bin liner trouser sheʼs wearing is surprisingly warming the undercarriage –good show.
Just wanted to put ones feet up and enjoy a nice cool glass of Pimms when Liz decides to drag me to another tedious royal visit. I do get irate and bored with all this – Iʼll probably let loose the wild tongue just to amuse myself. Get them to pay us a hefty fee is what I say.
August 9 at 4:00pm · Like · Comment · Share
August 10 at 11:15am · Like · Comment · Share
Ashley Cole and 90,000 others like this. Brucie I wouldnʼt mind a nibble at that one too, by the time Iʼm your age I would have found me another young nurse maid dear Prince. And thatʼs no bin liner ʻits latex leggings August 9 at 8:13pm · Like
Prince Phillip And how would you know old boy? August 9 at 8:57pm · Like
Prince Edward likes this. Brucie We never get invited to do Royal visits anymore, lucky for some. August 10 at 12:13pm · Like
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Write a comment… Esther Ransen
Andrew Lloyd Webber
Got a delightful Victorian vase and Chandelier, I must say Harrods still have the magic Duke, shame some of us have been banned by the missus, you step in there and itʼs the tower for you sir
Hello Phillip, is it true you let off royal wind on the balcony during Prince Williams wedding? Word had been going round that you had a questionable kebab the night before.
August 11 at 3:22pm · Like · Comment · Share Al Fayed and 4 others like this.
Prince Phillip HRH to you madam, youʼre one to talk, reduced to doing silly insurance adverts on telly are we? August 11 at 3:30pm · Like
Boris Power Haw, Haw, LIP, (laughter in progress) Never mind Esther, I let one rip on the Route master yesterday whilst doing a PR bit about the state of travel by bus, mine even had a heat signature. August 11 at 4:01pm · Like
August 11 at 2:22pm · Like · Comment · Share
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Al Fayed and 4 others like this. Prince Phillip Steady on old chap, Liz is non –the wiser, I've been purchasing my snuff and dentures there for weeks. She may be the Queen of England, but Iʼm the man of the palace… Good God sheʼs going to read this, this blasted Face Book is a curse. August 11 at 3:13pm · Like
Prince Harry Your for it now grand dad, oilol (one is laughing out loud)
Her holiness dear Liz collared me to take out those pesky nil breeds, she calls her precious corgis.Got a good chuckle when I left the mutts outside the local offie for a good 20 minutes. One of these days Iʼll……the hideous things. They canʼt even walk, talk about over pampered vermin. Never mind fox hunting…..
August 11 at 3:42pm · Like
Prince Phillip youʼre one to talk boy, we know where you bought that German uniform for the fancy dress occasion. And bloody thanks for getting me in trouble with Liz; Iʼm forced to walk those blasted corgis twice a day now. August 11 at 3:43pm · Like
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Lil Wayne friend request
Hey dowg, how's it hanging, heard you hit 90, congrats hommie, any time you wanna get a gig going without your b…. in tow, just holla dowg.
August 13 at 1:22pm · Like · Comment · Share Prince Phillip
Who are you? And whatʼs that contraption on your head? Some sort of mop? I shanʼt be endorsing your friend request, you look like a lice ridden ragamuffin sort of fellow.
August 13 at 6:54pm · Like · Comment · Share Write a comment…
August 12 at 1:22pm · Like · Comment · Share Robert Mugabe
You know, I could do you a favour, those dogs are my favourite dish. Send them over to Zimbabwe, and I will show you the real meaning of hotdog, yum, yum
August 12 at 2:54pm · Like · Comment · Share Write a comment…
With technological advances as they are, anyone can publish an e-magazine! There are many low cost options to share your information with a wide audience. You can monetize your magazines through subscriptions and advertisements. Your content can be seen by anyone in the world who has access to the Internet. Think of the possibilities! Some popular publishing platforms are Issuu.com, Yudu.com, and Calaméo. Issuu is great because you are given the choice of either having a free account or upgrading to a pro account ($19 / month). With the free account you can embed your e-zine on your blog, website, or any of your social media accounts. This will give access to anyone that clicks on the magazine link within yours or any other website. Not tech savvy? No problem, Issuu takes care of the technical aspects for you. This is a great way to begin branding yourself and letting everyone know that you have great information to share. With this type of account you cannot monetize your magazine though. To monetize your magazine you would need to upgrade to a pro account. The pro account offers a two-week trial where you can try out the features, and see what additional tools and customizations can be made to your publication. For example, unlike a print magazine you can imbed a video into your e-zine. This is great if you are doing an article about a personality, because then you can imbed an interview so that your audience gets a
better feel for who the person is and what they are about. The magazine becomes an interactive tool, which will create greater engagement with your target audience. Greater engagement will create more interest, which will in turn increase sales. Another great feature about Issuu is the ability to gather statistical information regarding the readers. This can help you track which articles were most popular, how many people bookmarked the publication, and how many comments were given regarding a particular topic. You can also see what type of rating your publication was given and where your reader base is coming from. This helps you to see what is working with your publication and what might need to be tweaked. Another publishing option for your e-magazine is the website Yudu. Yudu offers three levels of accounts: Free, Plus (£99.00 / year), and Pro (See Pricing Brochure). Each level offers more possibilities for readership tracking, monetization, and services. The free account comes with Yudu streaming ads to allow for the possibility of a free account status. These ads are shown on page 0. The ads are removed once an upgrade to at least Plus is achieved. Additionally, with the Free account there are restrictions with the publishing options. The Plus option offers the ability to add video and audio, distribution via CD/ DVD/ Flash drive, and the ability to embed the magazine in an external website. The highest level is Pro which offers a bureau service. With this feature you can
let Yudu, using your documents, create a magazine for you. They put together a professional looking publication and offer a free no obligation preview of the finished product. Other services with the Pro option include the ability to have targeted ads shown to the readers. The service is called SmartADS and offers the ability to have video, static, or flash ads in your magazine. An additional part of this offer is SmartWORDS, which can look for ads related to specific words within your magazine through in-text advertising. For your pricing and information needs there is a feature called SmartCAT. This allows you to adjust factors of your magazine and have results show in real time. For example, if you would like to adjust the pricing of a subscription or change a product detail, there is no waiting period and your information is automatically updated. This allows your readership to have the most current data possible, which allows for seamless productivity. A final option is Calaméo. Calaméo offers three levels of service Free, Premium (12 € / month), and Platinum (49 € / month). As with the previous choices, with each upgrade there is a higher level of service delivered. The highest level of service gives the reader the ability to have a direct download of the publication without registering with Calaméo and there is no Calaméo branding throughout the publication. Therefore, there will be no "Powered 5
by Calaméo" signature within the publication. Once the user reaches the Premium level, they can begin to have subscriptions, use analytics to track readers, and set up multiple profiles so that anyone in the group can manage subscriptions and track readers.
sions based on subjects related to the contents. This is another way to make the magazine interactive and let the readers know that they are important to the publication. Your magazine can be seen on one of many electronic newsstands, such as Zinio, another good option..
When just starting out, it will be important to concentrate on developing quality product, engaging content and working on your selling point. This can be done by talking about subjects you’re an expert in, having access to quality information to increase your understanding, or having access to people who are experts in various subjects. People can be found through family and friends, or you can use freelance experts, such as those on Elance, as a low cost option to compile the information for your publication. By convening a team, you can use the strengths of the individuals to take your e-zine to levels you might not have reached alone. Another way to form a team could be to partner with others who are considering an e-zine publication and combining your efforts to create a collaborative e-zine. With time the e-zine will be perfected and monetizing your efforts can be reviewed, then you can open it up to paid subscriptions.
With e-zines you never have to worry about running out of stock. The magazines are an electronic version of information, available any time anyone is looking for something good to read. Even while you sleep,your magazines are still sharing your information with the world. Additionally, you can make past editions available so that when you Gather a larger readership they can access past issues.
Getting the word out about your publication is easier than ever. You can use social networking sites to link to articles or the magazine’s home page. Offer teasers regarding upcoming content, engage new readers with questions, encourage the sharing of comments, and create discus-
Whether you have a weekly, monthly, or quarterly publication you would like to share, it has never been easier to do this instantly.Issuu, Yudu, and Calaméo offer low cost options and many perks with paid accounts, to ensure that your publication is everything you hoped it would be. You can share information, pick up some subscribers, and generate revenue through ads, or just share the information with friends. The possibilities appear to only be limited by your imagination. With the technological advances happening almost every day, we can all become publishers.
E-magazine reviews By Catherine Monreal With the world of internet publishing wide open, anyone with a great idea can put together and share a magazine. We reviewed several magazines and picked our top 10 interesting publications. Though not all are brand new, it is hard to tell the premiere issues from the longstanding magazines, since some new independents are really going for the professional content and design. We picked a few good ones.
Magazine Name: K9 More Info: www.k9magazine.com This magazine is packed with essential information regarding the care and enjoyment of dogs. There are videos to further explain topics such as canine gum disease, and training essentials. The publication tackles topics such as keeping dogs cool in hot weather and learning theory. A definite must read for any dog lover.
Magazine Name : Gadgets magazine More Info: www.gadgetsmagazine.com.ph Gadget magazine is a good e-zine packed with personal entertainment and cool gadget reviews. We liked the idea of features covered in web shopping, branching a bit into fashion and lifestyle. The title looks the business, and gives the print rivals a run for their money. Music, lifestyle and a great tech parade abound, with mouth watering images put together done with expert knowledge. If youâ€™re looking to splash out on cool gear, take a peek at this one.
Magazine Name : Startup More Info: www.startupmagazine.net Startups, entrepreneurs, and techies will enjoy this magazine. Informative stories, great photos, and excellent content that are chosen for their inspirational messages. You can learn a lot from personal business journeys here. The title has that feel of reader engagement, and interactivity. The magazine layout is attention grabbing for all the right reasons, if you are one that subscribes to innovative start â€“ups, this is a magazine to read on a regular basis.
Magazine Name: Sex Appeal More Info: www.sexappealmagazine.com A magazine for men being men - with a focus on everyday male activity. Lots of beautiful women to ogle at, along with articles on sexual matters you were afraid to share with the missus, the music scene, and interviews are filled with interesting people. Sex Appeal is branding itself as more than just a magazine. They have forayed into travel, casino, and photography as well. Definitely one to keep an eye on.
Magazine Name: MADMENMAG More Info: www.facebook.com/madmenmagazine Tagged as a “unique magazine for unique men” MADMENMAG is a men’s lifestyle magazine, which offers a wealth of information regarding the good life. This magazine is great because it is printed in dual language (Spanish/English). It is chock full of information on clothing, refreshments, and travel destinations. Great read!
Magazine Name: Equine Canine and Country Life More Info: www.equestrianlifemagazine.com What isn’t in this magazine? Sizable information regarding horses, canines, recipes, gardening, and more! A good amount of information, which will no doubt take several days to soak in. Whether you have horses for companionship or if you compete, information is shared regarding competition equipment and nutritional health. A must read for horse people.
Magazine Name: tiny & little More Info: www.tinyandlittle.com.au Great magazine with the focus on kids. The layout of the magazine is wonderful and offers craft ideas, recipes, party planning, and books to read. The pictures are beyond cute, and there is so much information packed into each issue that you will want to keep them for reference for years to come.
Podcast Heroes By Christopher Reynolds
From intellectual musings to comedy greats, we round-up the best podcasts on the internet. So clear your diary, get out your iPod and get listening!
BBC Radio 4: In Our Time Website: www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/features/in-our-time In Our Time is exactly the sort of thing you'd expect to hear when you switch on BBC Radio 4 – it's high brow, intellectually stimulating, and dangerously close to disappearing up its own arse. Nevertheless, if you want to drop in on intelligent discussion from leading university academics, on a whole range of subjects (from Norse Mythology, to the origin of infectious diseases), then it's the only show in town. The podcasts are recordings of the weekly show which airs every Thursday.
Adam and Joe Website: www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00876k2 The Adam and Joe podcasts offer a sublime mix of comedy music, rock star guests and absurd humour. The duo amassed a cult following after they first appeared on Channel 4 back in 1996 with the televised Adam and Joe Show. Since 2001 they have been largely confined to BBC radio, but with the rise of the podcast format the quirky pair have gained a new following among iPod-toting youths, both in the UK and abroad.
Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History Website: www.dancarlin.com/disp.php/hh Dan Carlin is like the history teacher everyone wishes they had back in school. Whether he’s narrating the fall of the Roman Empire, or examining the history of child abuse, the US journalist delves into events and theories with such enthusiasm and vigour that you’re hooked from the minute you press play. There’s a whole back catalogue of podcasts to get stuck into, but make sure you check out his four part series on the Russian/German confrontation during WWII - it’s absolutely riveting.
The Ricky Gervais Show Website: www.rickygervais.com/podcast.php The Ricky Gervais Show, published by The Guardian newspaper, was one of the first podcasts to break into the mainstream and has since become the most downloaded podcast ever. The show revolves around Gervais and his co-writer Steven Merchant as they playfully belittle their producer/friend Karl Pilkington, who comes across as something of an idiot savant (though with the emphasis on ‘idiot’). If you’re not a fan of Gervais’ slightly offensive sense of humour then you’ll probably want to steer clear, but for everyone else The Rick Gervais Show is essential listening.
Stuff You Should Know Website: www.science.howstuffworks.com/stuff-you-should-know-podcast.htm Stuff You Should Know is the perfect remedy for an overly inquisitive mind, or for those of us who just like throwing around general knowledge to impress others. The show covers all those things that you should’ve learnt at school, served-up as informal bite-sized discussions between hosts Josh and Chuck. Whether it’s a debate about Karma, or an explanation of how suicide bombers operate, Stuff You Should Know informs, entertains and makes you feel intellectually smug all at the same time.
NPR: Planet Money Website: www.npr.org/blogs/money With the current financial crisis ensuring that economics is always in the headlines, NPR’s Planet Money is a great way to familiarise yourself with the issues that are currently shaping our politics and society. But as well as breaking down all those dense financial concepts – like toxic assets, fractal banking and quantitative easing - Planet Money looks at quirky subjects, like how much it costs to maker a hit record, or the reasons behind tipping culture. It’s essential listening for those who want to go beyond the headlines and understand how money, industry and economics really work.
PICTURE MANIPULATES Courtesy of www.funzo.com
Skull Tankard/Mug Missouri USA
Starting Bid: US $16.99 $9.85 Standard Shipping Do your employees tend to not pay attention during meetings? Are you trying to increase output and let the employees understand that you mean business? This is the mug for you! If you are seen around the office drinking out of this mug I can almost guarantee that output will increase, and surprisingly more will get done during the workday in less time. Employee meetings will become a thing of the past and negative feedback will drop dramatically. Stay at home mom instead? You might think this is the mug for you but you would like your children to go to bed sometime, no?
12 Beer & Soda Can Holster Ammo Belt
California USA Price: US $29.95 $8.95 Standard Shipping
New York USA Price: US $5.98 FREE Standard Shipping
What do you get the girl who has everything? Why a beer and soda can ammo belt, of course. Apparently, when it is time to do laundry she can wear it as a shirt. Take her fishing with you and you’ll never be thirsty. The sellers coined this one as a sheer piece of genius accessory. Selling quite well in good old South Carolina and Arizona state. Oh ‘ - but the contraption doesn’t come with the girl. Sorry.
Would you like to get beaten up by the end of the workday? Possibly have a visit or two from the local police or government officials? If so, then this is the sign for you. Yes, it is advertised as a Gag but seriously who would put this in their window even as a joke? probably not the sign you want to display if you plan to stay in business. Additionally, the sign only comes in one other language. We decided to get Xavier from Mexico to bid for the door sticker in good old South American Spanish, he was told there was non left to sell.
www. cgi.ebay.com/12-Beer-Soda-Can-Holster-AmmoBelt-Camo-Great-Gift-/160475585771?pt=LH_DefaultDo main_0&hash=item255d171ceb
www. cgi.ebay.com/PRANK-GAG-SIGN-HELP-WANTEDminorities-not-apply-/370515732321?pt=LH_DefaultDom ain_0&hash=item5644756761
www. cgi.ebay.com/Skull-Tankard-Mug/250844280339?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3 a677bf613
Roadkill Helper Maryland USA
Prank Gag Sign—Help Wanted (Minorities Need Not Apply)
Alien in a Jar California USA
Blood Bath Shower Gel Solihull, UK
Starting Bid: US $19.99 $6.99 Expedited Shipping
Price: US $29.00 $9.99 Standard Shipping
Price: GBP 4.99 GBP 6.95 Standard Int’l Shipping
We found this one quite unique. Here is a little fun you can have with your kids. Let them know that they will get no dessert if they don’t finish their dinner, and then make sure the box is out so they can see what’s on the menu! You could also tell them that it is mystery meat night, before you show them the box. Can’t think of one kid who wouldn’t clean their plate pronto! This could be hours of fun and then there is also the possibility of leftovers. The fun that keeps on giving!
Here is something to keep you up at night. This is “the alien in a jar as seen in x files and in the mid 90’s Dark Sky’s the alien TV series”. Yes it is described as a prop, but imagine this sitting on your dresser, facing you and it is the last thing you see before you close your eyes. How many times before you actually fall asleep will you check to make sure it is exactly where you put it? It’s clear that the sellers have not considered the essence of a good nights sleep.
Twilight and vampire flick fans would love this one. Smells like the real thing, we were a bit concerned that there is a lack of detail in regards to the product content. Just the blood type. It does suggest great quality as seen in it’s thick and sticky mass. Leave this out for your friends and family to use as the guest soap, even better, the in-laws. This will surely put you in the good graces of the family.
www. cgi.ebay.com/Roadkill-Helper-Cheese-CarcassMacaroni-/350477384249?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&has h=item519a147a39
www. cgi.ebay.com/Alien-Jar-Area-51-fetus-x-files-ufomovie-prop-/270779772509?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&h ash=item3f0bbb6e5d
www. cgi.ebay.com/Blood-Bath-Shower-Gel-HorrorFans-Unusual-Gift-/310313492545?pt=UK_Collectables_ WeirdStuff_RL&hash=item484020204
Shredded US Currency Georgia USA
Price: US $47.50 $12.99 Economy Shipping Want your kids to like you and hate you within seconds? Tell them you are giving them over $14,000 and then give them this. From elation to despair then anger in record time! It is a 2 foot long bag of shredded money. Who couldn’t use one of these? You could wait until your friends come over and throw some into the fireplace to let them think you have so much that you can just burn it. Let them see you put it down as extra bedding or padding for your animals. You could say “It’s only money” and then watch their faces. You can have over $14,000 for under $50. Of course you can only spend the money that is going out and not what you are getting. I wonder how long it would take to see if you could glue a bill together. www.cgi.ebay.com/Shredded-US-Currency-3-pd-bagOver-14-000-2-ft-long-/160535650645?pt=LH_DefaultDo main_0&hash=item2560aba155
Half Pound Dark Green Thinking Putty
Pennsylvania USA Winning Bid: US $8.10 $4.90 Expedited Shipping I think this may be the first thing I have seen on eBay where I almost threw up. Seriously, looks like you are buying either a booger or snot and the picture makes it look wet. (slight gagging noise) It is only about $5, but the expedited shipping is almost another $5, so I don’t know about that. To help calm my stomach I see that it comes in a Ziploc bag (stomach gurgling). Oh, this posting is not going to end well. It is “Thinking Putty” and all I think about is if I really want to taste what I had to eat again today. Ugh! I guess the only thing I would do if I bought it would be to think about where to hide it. I don’t think I could look at that all day, let alone think about touching it. (turning green). www. cgi.ebay.com/Half-Pound-Dark-Green-ThinkingPutty-/250846747563?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=i tem3a67a19bab
Real Moose Poop Earrings South Carolina USA
Price: US $10.99 FREE Expedited Shipping Got a girlfriend that you are tired of but can’t figure out a way to end the relationship—give her jewelry! How will this work you ask….well, let her know that she has genuine moose poop dangling from her ears and you shouldn’t have a problem getting her to leave. Touted to be “hypoallergenic” but I am not sure that poop and hypoallergenic can be used in the same product description. It is harvested (you know how), dried and coated so it shouldn’t smell. I still have to wonder about the earrings breaking, chipping or anything where the inside is not covered by anything anymore. Wonder how comfortable someone could be having poop that close to their face. www. cgi.ebay.com/Real-MOOSE-POOP-doo-doo-nuggetearrings-jewelry-WEIRD-/300576757509?pt=LH_Default Domain_0&hash=item45fbc55705
Internet Radio Round-up By Christopher Williams
Video may have killed the radio star, but internet radio is alive and kicking. So twiddle those virtual knobs and read on for our round-up of the funniest, most controversial, and most entertaining radio programs on the web. Prison Planet
Alex Jones is probably one of the most famous conspiracy theorists on the internet. His show, Prison Planet, is a smorgasbord of crackpot theories, left wing news analysis and angry, vitriolic ranting. To give you an idea, within hours of the Norwegian massacre news breaking, Jones claimed that the whole thing was a conspiracy designed to persecute white Europeans... Yeah, pretty crazy. But although 80% of what he says is bonkers, every now and again he’s proved right. The 2008 financial crises? Yep, Jones predicted it.
Radio Lab somehow manages to simultaneously be the most profound, informative and entertaining radio podcast on the internet. It’s kind of like a science show, but instead of bombarding you with facts and theories, it teaches you about the world through fascinating true life stories. Such as the Russian scientist who turned foxes into dogs, the tumour that spawned an entire pharmaceutical industry, and the computer program that dictated America’s Cold War strategy. There’s really nothing else like it on the internet, and if you head over to the website you can download Radio Lab’s back catalogue right now.
One of the most popular free internet radio stations around, this is a place that you’ll find pretty much anything you ever want to hear - provided you’re not too off the beaten track in terms of musical tastes. With a simple subscription, you can access a musical playlist that matches your tastes perfectly. The site will take the artists you suggest and offer you other music that you may not have listened to before. There’s simply no good reason not to have a subscription.
LBC, or London’s Biggest Conversation, is well and truly mired in the British political scene. The great thing is that, while it has enough weight to entice people like Nick Clegg onto the show, it still includes news segments about cats stuck in trees and stories on the aftermath of the royal wedding. This station is blessed with great presenter talent, we strongly recommend the podcast downloads of Steve Allen and James Whale –absolute entertainment in regards to opinion and humour. If you live in London, or just want to experience its lively discourse, then this is definitely a station to brush your teeth to.
S.I.R. is the internet radio station run by cult filmmaker Kevin Smith, who’s famous for making Clerks, Dogma, Jersey Girl and Zack and Miri Make a Porno, amongst others. Other than filmmaking, Smith is renowned for talking explicitly about sex and drugs. He also doesn’t hold back when it comes to sharing his opinions on the glitz and glamour of Hollywood. Frequently actors, screenwriters and other people he’s worked with feature on the show. So if you want to hear totally frank - and sometimes downright obscene - talk radio about the film industry, this is the place to go.
Website: www.michaelsavage.com Michael Savage is right wing. Actually, Michael Savage is so right wing that he’s currently banned from entering the United Kingdom because of fears that he’d incite racial hatred. To be honest, the British government is overacting - Savage Nation really isn’t that bad - but it does offer a fascinating insight into the right wing nutters that tend to dominate American politics. From declaring that Muslims should be deported from America, to suggesting that Autism is a ‘racket’ designed for poor people to claim disability benefits, Savage Nation is one of those radio shows you love to hate.
Stuck in the 80s
Onion Radio News
Heidi and Frank Show
Website: www.heidiandfrank.com Website: www.tampabay.com/blogs/80s If you’re old enough to get nostalgic for leg warmers, Michael J. Fox, Duran Duran and oversized shoulder pads, chances are you’ll love Stuck in the 80s. As the title suggests, this radio show is all about the decade of decadence and suspect taste, as radio host Steve Spears rants about 80s films, music and culture with more than a hint of irony and humour. From discussing how best to dress as a Top Gun character, to whatever happened to Andrew Dice Clay, Stuck in the 80s is a hilarious look back at a decade many of us would prefer to forget.
Website: www.theonion.com/feeds/radionews If you’re familiar with The Onion, you’ll know about the degree of irreverence and satire they inject into their ‘news’. If you’re not, you should know that this is a comedy show that uses topical issues as its fuel. Seizing the topics of the day and beating them with the irony stick, the Onion’s radio segments take their cue from the videos and news articles published on the site. For instance, expect to hear headlines like ‘Student Slacks Off Due to Post-Coital Lethargy’ and ‘Amy Winehouse’s Grammys Returned By London Pawn Shop’.
An excellent radio duo, Heidi and Frank deal with many of the more ‘out there’ issues of the day. You’re unlikely to find much of a topical nature, but the conversation – because it’s mostly just that – is centred more around the gutter than being in any way high brow. Think phone ins with drunk rednecks and, most recently, a man who claimed he regularly slept with horses. Heidi and Frank aren’t afraid to speak their minds, which nowadays is refreshing.
The Browser Magazine Li f e as a freelance globe trotter Natalie Chandler We lot at the Browser Magazine have been encouraged to share with you, our working life and how the internet determines how we work and play. Well, this is my bit - ‘I’m a freelancer; I work for myself.’ That’s how I’d introduce myself to locals in exotic Bali. I always wondered about the surprised expressions, until an expat within earshot explained that, to locals, “freelancer” meant a prostitute without a pimp. Previous conversations took on a whole new light. For the record, the only thing I sell as a freelancer is my knack for writing – most recently rambling about all things technical for The Browser. Cross-cultural misunderstandings aside, there’s a lot to be said for making your laptop your office. Since deciding to go freelance (quiet up the back…) in November 2010, I’ve chased the sun to Australia and Indonesia, returning to the UK only briefly to show off my tan. But it’s not all wild nights out and waking up in dirty old Kuta praying to God the ‘Browser Deadline: July 16’ tattoo on my forehead is henna. In fact, it’s a lot more like hard work than I ever imagined, with tight deadlines and editors on Skype 24/7. Plus, most of the folks around me are on holidays. ‘This is not brand new information’ you’re probably thinking - and you’d be right. But I’m not the sharpest tool in the box. So while most folks are kicking back in Paradise, you’re just as likely to find me hunched over my laptop at 5am, sitting directly under the Wi-Fi box trying to conduct a Browser call while mosquitoes the size of pigeons feast on my flesh. And seeing as we’re on the subject of slap-dash interwebs access, a light misting of rain and my apartment’s Wi-Fi takes a tumble. As a result, I practically live at my local café, where the connection’s made of sterner stuff. ‘Boo-bloody-hoo, loser,’ I hear you say. But take five lattes spread over six hours; mix it with a dash of Indo belly; then add a pinch of seething waitress a la ‘You’d better tip me more than you did yesterday, you big mooch’, and the Amish way of life starts looking pretty good. As much as I kvetch, I can’t imagine giving up my Browser gig, going back to the old 9-to-5, or working for ‘The Man’. There’s something about the endless possibilities for freelancing that make all the late nights, early mornings and caffeine-induced runs worthwhile (too much information? Answers on a postcard, please…) Plus, when I get really fed up, I remind myself that the four weeks’ holiday in exotic locales that my friends live for – that’s now my life.
Freebee has been buzzing around for more free goodies on the web, get stuck in and enjoy the nectar of freemium. uk.pogo.com
Pogo is an online gaming site, which offers the choice of playing games by yourself or gaming against others. Choices include puzzles, word, board games, and arcade games, among others. You can challenge your mind with games like Scrabble or Boggle, try your hand at strategy with Risk and Monopoly, or just play a card game of Solitaire. The site is free to sign up, but your games will have ads running while you play. So, you might finish a game and have to watch an ad before your next round can start.
Who doesnâ€™t love a free movie? There are hundreds of movies to watch, TV shows
How great is it that colleges around the world have given everyone the opportu-
to catch up on, and Originals to view. You can hover your cursor over a title you like, and a short synopsis comes up so that you can have a quick overview of your selection. There are mature movies on here that require age verification, before movies can play. Mature movies referring to theme or violent content, there is no porn on this site. If youâ€™re not interested in movies then you can catch up with your favorite TV shows or revisit a classic. The offerings include regular shows (sitcom, drama, etc), anime, and cartoons. The movies on the site are shown uncutâ€”there is no editing for time
nity to increase their knowledge on a wide variety of subjects? The Open Courseware Consortium, which is comprised of colleges around the globe, has opened their electronic doors to the public. Through this site you are given the opportunity to see lecture notes, and more from a variety of classes. Class information is offered online, free to anyone with the desire to learn. It depends upon the class, which information has been made available, but it is still free learning right at your fingertips. On this site there are greater than 60 sources bringing you in excess of 5,000 courses in more than 10 languages. This
Some people might find this an irritation, but it is a small price to pay for a good selection. You can become so engrossed in any of games that you lose track of time. The games can prove to be quite addictive. The gaming is smooth and the graphics are good. Great interactive opportunities, with anyone on the internet and the game variety is enough to please most players. This is a site to check out.
or space,and the movies will have advertisements in them. Which can be quite a bore if you are engrossed in the movie and then it cuts to a commercial. Crackle is a completely free sight. Additionally, they have developed an app that works on your phone or other mobile device, so you can enjoy your movies and shows wherever you like.
site is definitely worth the time and effort, to search and see what class information is offered, and to discover a completely new world of learning that is available to you. While the information is available, it is not a true whole course, so there might be some additional information or material that is needed. Additionally, there will be no one available to ask questions to if some of the material is unclear.
Offering over 35,000 free books for you to download to computer, phone, tablet, or
Spofity is the place to go if you want to listen to some music. Spotify can be down-
other mobile devices, this is a site worth checking out. The books come in multiple formats so there is no need to worry that a book will not work with your device. The offering of books include: craft books, history, psychology, children’s, romance, classics, and the list goes on. There is also the ability to find books in various languages such as Chinese, French or Spanish.
several books this does becomes a bit tiresome. The books can be searched by author, category, title, subject, and language, so if there is a type of book that you are looking for, a list will be generated showing the books that fall into the category that you have chosen.
The books that are offered have expired US copyrights, so if you are in the UK, or other countries, you’d need to research before downloading books. Project Gutenberg will define how the book can be used, whether there is the ability to copy it, give it away, or re-use it. After downloading
loaded to a computer (free version), or a mobile device (paid version) so that tunes can be listened to on the go. The free version allows for a limited time of free music listening per month while the paid versions (£4.99 and £9.99/ month) allows for unlimited listening. Songs can be searched by artist, album, title or related artist. With the free version, there are advertisements, so unfortunately, you have to put up with interruptions, or pay for the music. The next song will start automatically, after subjecting you to all sorts of advertisement. Spotify will also check your computer for music files and add them to your catalog so you can listen
to all of your music in the same place. You can get into Spotify currently by email invitation, but they are not hard to come by. Spotify is now a major contender in this category of online entertainment, and are still looking to extend this States side.
Spofity is the place to go if you want to listen to some music. Spotify can be downloaded to a computer (free version), or a mobile device (paid version) so that tunes can be listened to on the go. The free version allows for a limited time of free music listening per month while the paid versions (£4.99 and £9.99/ month) allows for unlimited listening.
start automatically, after subjecting you to all sorts of advertisement. Spotify will also check your computer for music files and add them to your catalog so you can listen to all of your music in the same place.
Songs can be searched by artist, album, title or related artist. With the free version, there are advertisements, so unfortunately, you have to put up with interruptions, or pay for the music. The next song will
Spotify is now a major contender in this category of online entertainment, and are still looking to extend this States side.
OK Cupid is a free dating site/social networking site that caters to many sexual orientations and has been around since 2004. The site owners use the power of math to help you find dates that are suitable matches. The site has over 1 million unique visitors a month and there is a wealth of information to learn.
repeated over and over and over and over again….obsessed much? Then there is the blog –weird!
Doing a quick search through the profiles, I wonder who is matched with some of these people. Does having “boobies” in your profile name help or hurt your search? Then there are the people whose profile blurb consists of the same word
You can get into Spotify currently by email invitation, but they are not hard to come by.
On the blog there is trend data regarding the users of the site. I am not sure how knowing these things is actually useful to understanding the users or if it. It seems to be for fun. The owners catalog words found in profiles and leave it to the readers to come to their own conclusions about the subject that OKTrends have proposed, but to what point? This is a free site for anyone to join so anyone will.
This is a designers dream come true. A place on the internet, where you can search through Icons, Web templates, texture, and pattern templates to suit your project. For free, you can download the various (designated) tools (with the idea of sharing where you found them) or there is a paid option, which grants you a royaltyfree license and source files. For those wanting to pay, there are monthly and yearly pay options (Monthly (approximate costs) £5 Casual, £9 Professional, £14 Elite and an annual charge of £42, £60, £97 respectively).
The work is expertly done, and there is quite a variety of items to choose from. When you go to the site, the list of items available is listed, and some you may choose to download externally are linked to the actual download pages where documents are originally found.
amount of work-related or leisure books that you read and retain the information, which can help you get ahead.
to purchase software, so that you do not have to be on the Internet while you are learning. The software offers additional tips, tricks, and tools to help increase your speed. For the online program there is nothing to download to your computer, you just input the text and go.
The program works by showing a paragraph of text (either theirs or something you have copied and pasted) and then when you begin “reading” the text is broken up into words or phrases that flash on the screen. At the bottom of the reading it shows how many words you are reading and at what speed (words per minutewpm) they are being shown. Have a bunch of books, magazines, and newspapers that you need to go through? Does the stack grow every day? Here is an online program to help you increase your reading speed. You can increase the
There is also a blog on the site, which gives further information regarding ways that you can enhance your reading speed (increasing your vocabulary, as an example). Additionally, there is the opportunity
make your photos better. You can upload a photo to the site and then tools are available to edit your photo to make it better. You are able to sharpen the picture, put funny stickers on, adjust the brightness or get rid of that blemish! In addition to editing pictures to make them better, you can change the look of the picture as well. There is the ability to make the photo look like it is old or came from an instant camera or a toy camera. So you can not only enhance the photos but add a touch of fun wizardry to them as well.
Picasa and other free image editors are not the only choices to manage your images. Here is an online tool that will help you
When you are satisfied with all of the changes that you made you can choose the “save” feature and then you can
When viewing the various offers, you will need to pay attention to what you are clicking on, because although most items are free, but some are not, so it will be important to choose carefully.
While good, this is not a comprehensive learning tool. There is information given regarding average reading speeds but it will take some tweaking to find your true reading level. There will be no point for this program if you don’t challenge and push yourself to read faster or fall under the assumption that you can read faster than you actually can.
download it and/or you can share it on a number of social networking sites because a link is formed showing the location of the photo. You can either create an account on Aviary or you can just stop by and try it out. There are sample photos for you to test out the features that are available so that you can have an understanding of what the changes will look like before actually editing your photos. If you make any changes that you are not happy with, the site also uses an undo button to take you back to the previous changes you made.
Tablet reviews By Andy Hargreaves
iPad2 Just when you thought it was safe to have a quick look at what other manufacturers are doing with their tablets, along comes Apple with the iPad 2. One may think it’s pointless releasing another iPad, when we’re are still drooling over the first. Well, the iPad 2 does bring refinements over the original iPad. Additional features and adjusted short comings have been addressed. Starting with the design, its much thinner and sexier, and it has shed some significant weight from 1.5 pounds to 1.3 without compromising on gadgetry. A sleek magnetic smart case completes the new look, which also doubles-up as a stand. Starting at a confident $499,or £399 for the lower tiered 16 GB version. Apple have set themselves up as the Rolls Royce of the tablet market. Another limitation addressed, with the addition of front and back facing cameras, though the quality of cameras on the iPad 2 could have been better - the front-facing camera only has VGA resolution. The speakers are also louder and clearer . The new iPad 2, is a speed demon. The original iPad's slight stutter in menu navigation, web page loading, and app launching, have been completely eliminated, thanks to a fresh operating system and a dual core CPU. You also get minimal lag while playing games, and flicking through images is quick and snappy. Of course, the multitude of apps on the App Store will always be a major selling point over other tablets. The iPad 2's battery life is also quite impressive. The lithium ion battery lasts 10 hours and you'll probably get a good 4 or 5 days average use before you need to recharge. Despite arriving so soon after the original iPad, Apple's improvements and refinements make the introduction of the iPad 2 quite justified. Just ask the Chinese boy who reportedly sold his kidney to get his hands on one. www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nblx8-w0LYE
Blackberry playbook JThe 7-inch QNX-powered BlackBerry PlayBook is a sneaky contender in the tablet war. The QNX operating system that RIM is using for this device is specifically designed for efficient multitasking. It provides seamless functionality with no lagging or slowdowns, letting you run a number of apps simultaneously, with the tablet happily loading up web pages at the same time. However, as with BlackBerry handsets, the PlayBook does suffer from a lack of apps when compared to major competitors such as iOS and Android The Playbook comes equipped with Wi-Fi connectivity and - via a Webkit-based browser - offers full-Flash web-browsing. You get a HDMI output, which lets you pump out 1080p resolution video and mirror the OS onto a HDTV screen - a great selling point. The bezel looks identical to the rest of the touch screen, with the black background blending well. Controls are entirely onscreen with minimal navigation buttons. Swiping and scrolling feels fluid and responsive. However, in gunning for a minimalist design the PlayBook’s power buttons are a bit small and annoying for average sized fingers. In fact the tablet is quite small overall and compact at 5 inches high, 7.5 inches wide, and 0.4 inches thick. The screen itself offers 1,024x600 pixel-resolution, providing a crisp and clean picture. You get a front facing 3 megapixel camera with automated light adjustment and a back facing 5 megapixel camera that does a decent job capturing video. UK pricing for the PlayBook had been revealed ahead of its June launch, with the 16GB model kicking things off at £399. The 32GB model will set you back £479 and the 64GB version £559 from most UK retailers. Overall, the PlayBook is a well-placed challenger in the upmarket league of tablets www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=vI1VgedbMUY#at=16
Motorola XOOM The Motorola Xoom is a 10.1 inch touch screen tablet featuring Nvidia’s dual-core Tegra 2 processor. The tablet is powered by the Android 3.0, Honeycomb, operating system. The Xoom is a good contender amongst the top five tablets on the market. The display resolution actually beats the iPad 2’s and the design doesn’t disappoint either, with a sleek chassis made of black matte anodized aluminum (although at about 1.6 pounds the Xoom is heavier than the iPad 2). The Xoom also includes the 5 megapixel camera and flash integration. Like the Blackberry PlayBook, physical buttons are not visible on the Xoom (the device’s power button is located at the back). Instead, controls are almost entirely via the touch screen. This is not a favourite option to all tablet users,trying to be completely touch screen feels like relinquishing full control.Google has been busy improving Android’s user interface for tablet devices, making better use of the extra screen size. Overall, the navigation is efficient and the system quite responsive. There are five home screens to browse, by swiping the display horizontally. You also benefit from Android’s scope for personalisation – giving you lots of widgets to play around with. The 3D carousel menu is pretty cool to see in action too. The Motorola Xoom should be a popular choice for those that enjoy Android’s customisation features and those who like their devices to pack a punch when it comes to processing power. It’s Tegra 2 processor boasts cutting edge performance for a tablet, and makes apps, games and web-browsing zip along at high speeds. Plus there’s something about the name that just sticks. www.youtube.com/watch?v=PNCBT8Hlims
Title: She Looks Just Like You Author: Amie Klempnauer Miller Publisher: Beacon Press Type: Non- fiction Themes: Love, Family, Sense of Self The book reads as if you are sitting with friends. You really get a sense of the people and history that they’ve shared, and the writing gives you a sense of being right there with them. The love between Amie and Jane is palpable and the years they’ve shared are envious, even during their troubling times. How does life change when two becomes three? What differences are discovered when there are two mothers? Does one lose themselves when they become a stay-at-home mom or do they discover a richness they never knew existed?
Title: This Life Is In Your Hands Author: Melissa Coleman Publisher: Viking Adult Type: Harper Themes: Birth, Death, Survival The idea of living a self-sustaining life is fascinating. What you eat is what you grow, and living off the land becomes your way of life. Unfortunately, it also could become this families undoing. Starting out with big dreams and a plot of land, the Colemans set out on adventure.Life turns out to be hard work and constant adjustment, where they experience joy and heartbreak. Will they grow closer together or be torn apart?
Title: J.D. Salinger Author: Kenneth Slawenski Publisher: Random House Type: Nonfiction Themes: Writing, Isolation, War How can one not have a true sense of the man after living and breathing his life for almost a decade? What nuggets can be found from a man who lived life as a recluse, even ignoring an invite from the White House and Jacqueline Kennedy herself? Deeply affected by his time in World War II, his spiritual beliefs, and the ever present need to write, this book will take you on a journey you don’t want to miss.
Title: Blood, Bones & Butter Author: Gabrielle Hamilton Publisher: Random House Type: Nonfiction Themes: Food, Coming of Age, Family Wow! Each word in the title pertains to a section of the book. Each section weaves an intriguing tale into what made Gabrielle Hamilton the women she became. Her beginning was anything but idyllic. From her time stealing cars, to her endeavors at college, the opening of the restaurant, and the marriage, she gives a vivid portrayal of what her life was like. No sugar coating here, just a purely captivating read.
Title: The Map of Time Author: Felix J. Palma Publisher: Atria Books Type: Fiction Themes: Death, Love, Mystery This book takes you on a journey, one to the past and to the future. There are three distinct stories with a colorfully familiar cast of characters. H.G. Wells, Jack the Ripper, and Bram Stoker are a few of these characters. The setting for the story is 1889 Victorian London, and the idea of time travel is used to change the past and alter one’s present condition. What are the consequences of changing what was to be? Although this book is over 600 pages, it’s an adventure that begs to be longer.
Title: The Aging Myth Author: Joseph Chang, PH.D Publisher: Aylesbury Publishing, LLC Type: Non-Fiction Themes: Aging, Death, Health Who doesn’t want to learn about the myths of aging? Who wouldn’t want to do something about getting older? In reality we are all going to die, but Dr Chang let’s us know that we have control over how we age and how we live. In an engaging and educational manner, Dr. Chang explains the aging process, and what we as individuals can do to gain more control over the process. While he is a scientist the book is written in an easy to understand manner and it is a must for anyone who is concerned about aging. I bet Cliff Richard has a copy.
Title: Warren Buffett Invests Like a Girl Author: Louann Lofton Publisher: Harper Business Type: Non-Fiction Themes: Money, Investing, Personality This is an interesting book because it looks at investing through male/female minds and personalities. After writing the book, Louann gave a copy to Warren Buffett to read and he stated that yes, he did invest like a girl. It is about controlling your emotions and remaining on an even keel. There are eight tips that the author shares to help you to invest like a girl. Great read with wonderful insight into how maintaining an even temperament can help you gain wealth for the future.
Title: Very Bad Men Author: Harry Dolan Publisher: Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam Type: Fiction Themes: Death, Love, Judgment Murder, mayhem, politics, romance, and a bank robbery rolled into a fly by the seat of the page thriller,that will keep you guessing until the very end. Something went bad during a bank robbery seventeen years ago, and now the participants must die. David Loogan, an editor, is given a manuscript that describes the three murders, some of which have not taken place yet. Through the twists and turns of the page we are introduced to a cast of characters who all have something to hide. Great summer read!
Best of 5 - gadgets www.comet.co.uk Sorting out your hirsute bits isn’t just for the ladies, don’t you know. But nor does it have to mean a trip your local salon, hiding your face behind a three-month-old Hello! Magazine while some blue-rinsed Mavis keeps asking you how long you’ve been waiting for your girlfriend. The Rio Laser Hair Removal system, available from Comet for £79.97 , nixes individual hairs with a powerful four second treatment. Did you hear that? L.A.S.E.R.S. So it’s kind of like the Light Saber of the hair removal world (our words, not Rio’s…)
Please note: Not suitable for dark skin complexions & grey hair. www.comet.co.uk/p/Laser-hair-removal/buy-RIO-LASER-HAIR-REMOVAL-Laser-hair-removal/596701
It’s not all about iPad, you know. There are other devices on the market that boast their own brand of whiz-bangery. Take the ASUS Eee Pad Transformer 10.1” Tablet , available from Comet for £429.99. It boasts web, email, multimedia, full flash support, and not one but two cameras (1.2 megapixel and 5 megapixel). Plus, the ASUS Eee Pad sports an optional keyboard docking station, transforming before your very eyes into PC mode – hence the name.
Robots in Disguise ?
Complete with the latest and greatest tablet-specific Android Honeycomb OS, the ASUS Eee Pad is a great alternative to you-know-who. www.comet.co.uk/p/Tablets/buy-ASUS-Eee-PAD-TRANSFORMER-Tablet/717690
The Jawbone JBE02UK Jambox Wireless Speaker won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. For starters, it’s a whole lotta red…But if you can get past this (or are colour blind…) you’ll discover a high quality hi-fi that packs some serious punch. We’re talking 85 decibels. The Jambox is sitting on a pair of proprietary drivers, leaving its portable speaker counterparts for dead. It’s slim, stylish, and perfect for travel. Pick yours up for £147.44 from Comet – you won’t be able to miss it.
d In The Re
How’s this for impressive? The Panasonic DMP-BDT210EB Blu-Ray Player. This bit of kit seems to have actual magical powers. It must do, or how else could it convert 2D Blu-ray discs and your entire DVD collection into amazing 3D with natural depth perception? Think that’s all? Pfff, foolish mortals. The DMP-BDT210EB (catchy, no?) also sports VIERA CAST with Skype, so that you can see far away friends and family in glorious glorious detail.
Robots in Disguise?
The Panasonic DMP-BDT210EB Blu-Ray Player recently arrived at Comet, and will set you back £179.99. www.comet.co.uk/p/Blu-ray-Players/buy-PANASONIC-DMP-BDT210EB-Blu-ray-Player/733474
Brace yourselves, coffee lovers. The Gaggia RI9833/70 Espresso Coffee Maker not only looks the business, it also rocks a programmable timer so that your caffeine fix is waiting patiently for you each morning. The Gaggia RI9833/70 works five glorious bean grinder settings, and a 15 bar pump – whatever that means. Customising the settings is a piece-o-cake – the electronic display is superintuitive, as is the three button operation.
For goodness knows how long, the Gaggia RI9833/70 is available on Comet.co.uk for £466.10. Make sure you don’t miss out. www.comet.co.uk/p/Coffee-Makers/buy-GAGGIA-RI9833/70-Coffee-Maker/653020
www.Maplin.co.uk It seems like us humans are the only thing that aren’t getting smarter these days – even writing implements like the Livescribe Echo Smartpen 2GB are getting in on the act. Available from Maplin for £99.99, the Smartpen electronically stores what you write. With capacity for over 200 hours of audio and thousands of pages of notes, the Livescribe Smartpen even links your audio recordings to your notes, so you can find what you need later. And if you think that’s plenty clever already, prepare to be flummoxed. The Smartpen is password protected, so in the event of a lost pen, your notes and recordings are still safe and sound.
Get the party started pronto with the DJ Tech iBoost 101, available from Maplin for £249.99. The all-in-one DJ-PA system is designed with the iPod in mind. It includes: amplifier, speaker, mixer, equaliser, effect processor and two iPod docks.
Hey, Mr D J
Set up is super-simple. Just plug in your iBoost 101 and dock your two iPods. You’ll be blending your music like a pro in no time thanks to the eight effects and two adjustable parameters. Karaoke’s also on offer, so that’s all the cheesy party types covered then. The manufacturers have really put mobility as a main factor with this one. Portable and quite an effective sound box to beam down to any kind of party. www.maplin.co.uk/dj-tech-twin-ipod-portable-pa-system-iboost-101-512061
If you’re well into your boys’ toys, the 14MP Digital Compact Camera with Built-in Pico Projector is going to be right up your street. As the name hints at, it boasts a built-in Pico projector so that you can view photos on a big screen post-haste. Plus, there’s a 3-inch LCD display, 28mm wide angle lens, High Dynamic Range (HDR), in-camera red eye removal, blink detection and Pan Capture panorama. The 14MP Digital Compact Camera with Built-in Pico Projector is available at Maplin - online only – for £259.99.
Picture If You Will
Maplin’s currently touting its 500GB Pro Security System with Smartphone Controllable Dome Cameras for a cool £499.99. It’s a surveillance system with a difference – allowing you to see live video from four cameras, while also controlling two dome cameras via the free SwannView smartphone app, which is compatible with iPhone, iPad, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile 6, Symbian OS and more. The system includes two PRO-560 all-weather, high resolution 480TVL cameras with powerful night vision to 65ft/20m and two PRO-646 high resolution 600TVL dome cameras with wall-mounting brackets.
The 500GB memory means you can set the four cameras to record continuously for up to 120 days without having to do another darn thing. www.maplin.co.uk/500gb-pro-security-system-with-smartphone-controllable-dome-cams-and-live-stre-532738
For the super-cool motorcyclist types amongst you, you’ll be tickled to know there’s a new addition to the Zumo brood. The Garmin Zumo 660 Widescreen Motorcycle Navigator, available online from Maplin for £539.99, boasts advanced 3D navigation, lane assist, Bluetooth wireless technology, and a sunlight-readable, glove-friendly touch screen.
On Yer Bike
Although it’s kitted out for motorcycles, the Zumo 660 also comes with automotive mount, so it’s good to go right out of the box regardless of how many wheels you’ve got. Although, I worry about the safety aspect, on a bike,watching the screen may be a bit of a risk, the voice assist is then a must. The Zumo 660 offers full coverage mapping for Europe, including 1.2 million points of interest. www.maplin.co.uk/garmin-zumo-660-widescreen-motorcycle-navigator--531354
www.Firebox.com Rabid vinyl purists, avert thine eyes! The Profile USB Turntable, available from Firebox for £69.99, allows you to convert your records into digital music. Just plug the turntable into the closest USB port and activate the EZ vinyl converter software. The USB Turntable features adjustable gain, anti-skating control and high-speed vinyl recording function. It can also be connected to any home stereo with CD or auxiliary inputs, so when you’re not converting your records you can give them an old-school spin. We absolutely love this one.
Just For T he Record
The Profie USB Turntable is compatible with both Mac and PC. www.firebox.com/product/1401/Profile-USB-Turntable
Here’s hoping that for the Muvi Atom Digital Video Camera’s sake, size really doesn’t matter. At a bitty 4cm x 2cm x 2cm, the Muvi Atom is the world’s smallest video camera. Despite this, it sports a respectable 640x480 VGA – on par with the comparatively gargantuan Mino and Ultra by Flip. Videos are stashed on the 2GB Micro SD card included, but the device can handle cards up to 8GB.
It’s A Sma ll World
If aspiring directors are concerned about operating teeny buttons, don’t be. The Muvi Atom sports a special VOX mode that lets you start/stop recording using your voice (or any other noise over 65 decibels). Available from Firebox for £79.99. www.firebox.com/product/3067/Muvi-Atom-Digital-Video-Camera
Remember the dread you felt when the needle on your old scales would veer dangerously towards that extra pound or three? Well now you can have that exact same feeling, but with added WiFi! The WiFi Bathroom scales available from Firebox for £119.99, is so clever it can record your weight, fat mass and BMI each time you step onboard, sending it – should you so desire – to your computer or iPhone via your wireless connection. Want more? Tsk, greedy. The WiFi Scale is compatible with online coaching programs like Daily Burn, and popular apps such as RunKeeper and WeightBot.
It’s also available in black or white. In case you were wondering… www.firebox.com/product/2625/WiFi-Bathroom-Scales
Who doesn’t love to shut the world out from time to time? With the Lenco Noise Cancelling Headphones, it’s possible to cut the random jibber jabber, concentrating instead on your favourite tunes or program – like a much-needed head hug when you’re once again braving public transport, work, or any another shared space. Fully adjustable for all head sizes, the Lenco Noise Cancelling Headphones require just two wee AAA batteries and you’re good to go. Get yourself some new and improved ear cans from Firebox, where they’ll set you back £34.99 Where’s Your Head At?
Having your computer hooked up to your TV is all well and good, but it can be a right pain in the caboose when it comes to making your way through menus, cruising the web, tweaking your multimedia and scribing those important emails. And don’t even get us started on how a mouse is going to fit into this balancing act. That’s why the Air Keyboard, available from Firebox for $69.99, is a godsend. It works as an all-inone HTPC keyboard and 3D motion-sensitive mouse. So you can type, surf and point with nary a tricky moment.
e Air g In Th
It’s both Mac and Windows compatible, and has a range of up to 100ft. www.firebox.com/product/2691/Air-Keyboard
Best of 5 - travel www.Exodus.co.uk Music, mojitos, classic cars rocking Russian tractor engines – what’s not to love about Cuba? Before Castro kicks it, pack your padded cycling ensemble, and get your freshly shaved pins to Havana to hook up with Exodus’ 16-day Cycling Cuba tour. The tour takes in the famous capital, as well as Trinidad, Santiago, Sierra Maestra Mountain and the Bay of Pigs. Expect to cover a cool 40 miles each day – for the most part on decent, tarmac-covered roads. Each tour hosts up to 18 people, so you need never be stuck behind the same Lycra-clad bum.
Deal Cuba: The Wheel
Exodus’ Cycle Cuba tour will set you back £1,849-2,449 inclusive of flights. This one is an experience of a life time; it screams great value for money. www.exodus.co.uk/holidays/mah/overview
If you’ve mastered the stroll from the office to Starbucks, you’re probably primed for something a bit more challenging. Say, Everest Base Camp? Exodus’ lodge-based 18-day trek meanders through Sherpa country. You’ll follow the Dudh Kosi along picturesque fields and villages, lulling you into a false sense of security before the real climbing kicks you in the nuts. In addition to reaching Base Camp, intrepid mountaineers have the opportunity to scale Kala Pattar (5545m).
Groups max out at 16 plus leader and local staff, while some tours target solo travellers. Exodus’ Everest Base Camp Trek costs a cool £1,699-2,159 including flights. We would give this a bette www.exodus.co.uk/holidays/tnt/overview
One for when the chill sets in: Exodus’ eight-day Snowshoeing at Kvitavatn tour. Norway’s white-upon-white mountains, frozen lakes and snow-laden forests are all on show throughout this walking adventure with a twist. Take in the Hardangervidda National Park to the north and the Ornenipa peak to the east. Plus, they’ve managed to squeeze in downhill skiing, boarding, and ice climbing for those who fancy something extra with their snow stroll.
Meals are all included, while you’ll call a comfy mountain lodge home for the duration. Including flights, the eight-day adventure is priced at £1,099-1,149.
The formerly war-torn West African country is building quite a name for itself as a new tourist destination thanks to its beautiful beaches, incredible wildlife, and fascinating slave-era history. Exodus’ nine-day Discover Sierra Leone tour takes place in Freetown, the Moa River and Tiwai Island Wildlife Reserve, to name just a few of the highlights. In regards to conveniences, the area has very modest infrastructure, but if you really want to get that ‘back to basics’ experience, then this is a good choice.
Exodus gushes: “The rewards are beautiful star-lit skies well away from streetlights and the relaxing cacophony of rainforest noises.” The Exodus Discover Sierra Leone tour is priced at £2,349-2,699. www.exodus.co.uk/holidays/tnt/overview
As recent events in the Middle East unfolded, chances are your first thoughts weren’t ‘That reminds me, I must book my trip to Syria…’ Damn shame that, because the country offers warm hospitality, breathtaking scenery, and history a-go-go. As soon as the political sitch chills its boots, check out Exodus’ Ride The Road To Damascus tour . Yeppers, *that* Damascus. The * Actu
al* Ro a mascu d To Das
The nine-day adventure includes private bus transfers at the start and finish of each day, allowing the group to pootle through smaller villages and quieter roads. Plus, you’ll get time sans bike to take in the country’s two biggest cities. Exodus’ Ride The Road To Damascus tour will lighten your bank balance to the tune of £1,3791,509.
www.Travel-Nation.co.uk If you’re sick of living on Planet Me, maybe it’s time to try your hand at ‘voluntouring’ - the new way to take and give back. Travel Nation’s 11-day Community Development in Peru tour includes exploring the ruins of Ollantaytambo, climbing the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, as well as volunteering to build traditional Peruvian cooking stoves and work with a local women’s weaving co-operative in rural Sacred Valley. In just a few days you can make a difference in the lives of others.
Accommodation is a mixed bag of basic hotels, camping, and family homestays, while internal travel’s inclusive of the £859 basic price tag.
Travel Nation’s eight-day Full Moon trek is led by a member of the Al Wahibi tribe. Following the traditional Bedu way, prepare to mooch along the desert astride a camel - by moonlight no less - before setting up camp under the stars. The trek ends at the seriously beautiful coastline between Al Ashkarah and Ras al Haddon. All meals and soft drinks are provided for – and a good thing too given the dirge of 7-Elevens out desert way.
The sand-tastic experience will set you back £1,150, not inclusive of airfares to and from the start/ finish destinations. www.travel-nation.co.uk/cgi-bin/search.pl?id=2653&continent_id=3
Belize boasts the second largest barrier reef in the world, plus turquoise waters a-go-go. When you’re not kayaking from island to island up to 4 hours a day, enjoy snorkelling or just chill relaxing on the beach. We know, it’s a tough life. Travel Nation’s Kayak Belize tour starts from £789. The price includes accommodation, most meals, plus internal travel. www.travel-nation.co.uk/cgi-bin/search.pl?id=7949&continent_id=7
Thailand’s hill tribes inhabit the slopes of Chiang Mai, having migrated there from the Asian interior over the last 100 years. A visit to these traditional communities through Travel Nation’s five-day Chiang Mai Hill Tribes Trek will teach you about jungle food and the locals’ mod-con-free way of life. Plus, did we mention you get to ride an elephant? The bargain-tastic Chiang Mai Hill Tribes Trek is priced at a pocket-friendly £179 and includes accommodation in hotels and huts, plus most meals.
Fit To Be Thai
Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park is home sweet home to roughly half of the world’s endangered mountain gorilla population. Travel Nation’s three-day Gorilla Trek allows you to interact with mountain gorilla families in their natural habitat, but only after checking out the equator, taking in some volcanic vistas, perusing banana plantations, and meandering through lush forests. On the way back to Kampala on day three you’ll also stop at Mpambiire drum village to see the Ugandan drum craftsmen at work.
Travel Nation has priced this life-changing experience from £1,399. Meals aren’t included, so you’d better hope the gorillas are generous hosts… www.travel-nation.co.uk/cgi-bin/search.pl?id=7868&continent_id=1
www.ResponsibleVacation.com Avoiding the big ski resorts, Responsible Vacation’s eight-day Husky Safari in Finland gets the party started just 230km north of the Arctic Circle. Accommodation includes locally-owned safari houses and cabins, plus wilderness cabins so remote you’ll feel as if you can reach up and touch the Aurora Borealis. Responsible Vacation employs only local activity providers and hoteliers in its Finnish husky adventure. In doing so, the company hopes to maintain jobs in a high-unemployment area. Animal lovers will also enjoy the chance to look after their own team of sled dogs.
It’s A Dog’s Life
Responsible Vacation’s Husky Safari in Finland is priced from £1,665-1,845, including flights from the UK. Food, accommodation and cold weather clobber are provided too. www.responsiblevacation.com/vacation/3817/husky-safari-in-finland
How’s this for a cracking holiday: Nine days in Mongolia learning how to be a warrior like local boy done good, Gengis Khan. The Responsible Vacation Gengis Khan Warrior Training starts in the capital, Ulaanbaatar, with a wee history lesson, before heading out to the Mongolian grasslands in 4WDs. Dressed in full costume, following a restful night in felt gers (portable tents designed for a nomadic lifestyle), you’ll begin your training in 13th century battle skills.
Divide And Conq uer
The Responsible Vacation Gengis Khan Warrior Training in Mongolia starts from £2,150 excluding flights. In addition to kick-arse warrior skills, you get meals, accommodation, and a tailor-made Mongolian robe. www.responsiblevacation.com/vacation/3213/genghis-khan-warrior-training-in-mongolia
Responsible Vacation has this whole ethical travel malarkey down to a fine art. During its ten-day Native American tour with the Navajo and Hopi, you will meet local peeps, learn their history and beliefs, and even lend a hand around their homeland. Plus, for you adventurous-types, there’s rafting, hiking or horse-riding. Other activities include meeting with former President of the Navajo Nation, Milton Bluehouse, to learn about both traditional and contemporary issues.
th The Hanging Out Wi jo va Na
The tour crosses Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona, and is priced from £1,999 inclusive of all accommodation, transfers & meals. www.responsiblevacation.com/vacation/3219/native-american-tour-with-the-navajo-and-hopi
Life Is Maasai
Responsible Vacation want to help you get in touch with your inner nomadic pastoralist – how many travel companies can make that claim?
If Gengis Khan’s not your cup, don’t go retiring your dreams of warrior-dom just yet.
Sainte-Agnès-based Denis Longfellow leads the bi-annual Mercantour Horse Riding Vacation transhumance into Italy and back. For the full transhumance experience, riders must be familiar with riding all day. Alternatively, shorter rides, mini-breaks, and experience vacations are available. For peeps flying in from the UK, this vacation is a breeze to get to. Just head to Nice airport, then transfer to Le Boréon. The Mercantour Horse Riding Vacation includes the Transhumance à Cheval from £580 and the Parcs sans Frontières à Cheval from £695. Chaps included for both! www.responsiblevacation.com/vacation/2654/horse-riding-vacation-in-the-mercantour
As luck would have it, Responsible Vacation also offers a four-day Maasai Warrior Introductory Training Course. Ladies (and some fellas…), just don’t go trying to bring a Masai hunk home with you. The course concentrates on self-defence in the bush and protecting animals from predators, as well as language basics, stalking (animals, that is…), and some secret Maasai Warrior business. With each tour they run, Responsible Vacation walk the ethical tourism walk. In addition to supporting local entrepreneurs, the company helps nearby schools by running a volunteer teacher scheme. Responsible Vacation’s Maasai Warrior Introductory Training Course will set you back between $1,650 and $1,914. Alas, that doesn’t include flights. www.responsiblevacation.com/vacation/6715/maasai-warriortraining
Great Short Videos The Black Hole
Robot (“Endhiran” TeztigoMix_Part 02)
The Black Hole is a great short film about an office worker who is doing extra time at the office. While he is making photocopies he finds a portal in piece of paper allowing him passage through solid surfaces. As he starts experimenting with the black hole he lets his greed take over him.
This is one mindless orgy of a shooting fest. Hollywood has a new aggressive competition. Though this video is completely devoid of reality –it is an amazing feat of special effects and imagination gone made. Similar to the magic of Matrix, this is one to see after a bad day at work.
Elephants Dream is an artistic animated ten minute long short movie. Per se the movie is a strange and surreal experience but there are other things that make this movie remarkable. In fact, Elephants dream is the first movie completely made with open source software, like Blender, and every production file is available to be used by everyone.
It tells the story of two characters in a machine. As they explore it the older one tries to teach the younger about its wonders though he hardly seems impressed. video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6579282482160384521#
The Majestic Plastic Bag
This Phillips advertising, done exclusively for the internet, is a great piece of footage incredibly well done. Directed by Adam Berg, Carousel is a story told in a moment in time about a bank under siege by the police when being robbed by a bunch of creepy clowns. Time is suspended, Matrix style, and the camera moves from outside to inside of the bank and outside again completing a full circle.
Procrastination is a video about, well, procrastination. And most of us know how procrastination is tempting, how it makes us avoid reality for just a little bit longer, how we attempt to avoid responsibilities by doing nothing at all or finding some unimportant thing to do.
The Majestic Plastic Bag is a mockumentary about the life cycle of the plastic bag and its journey from the supermarket parking lot to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a plastic oasis in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, where he can live in peace with so many elements of his species.
The one thought that came to my mind after watching this was: “How come isn’t all advertising like this?”
Directed by John Kelly, Procrastination is a sweet short movie about something we all do everyday, even if we don’t realize it. It is not one of those motivating and it won’t make you work, it’s more of a reflection of our daily existence.
Narrated by Jeremy Irons, this mockumentary is a very clever way to call our attention to plastic pollution in our cities and in our oceans. This video is intelligent, funny and very ironic. A must see.
The Avalanches – Frontier Psychiatrist
Space Alone is a brilliant bittersweet flash animated movie about someone looking for a friend in the vastness of space. Directed by Ilias Sounas, a Greek animator, this short movie captures beautifully the loneliness and sadness felt by someone looking for life in the blackness of space. The animation is simple and beautiful and the music complements the image perfectly.
The Frontier Psychiatrist is one of the best video clips ever. A ghost choir, an old man dressed as an old woman playing the drums, a turtle with a man’s head, a skeleton DJ, Indians, cowboys and Mexicans, are only some of the strange elements that make this video awesome.
Sometimes the internet hides some wonderful gems, like this video posted in YouTube called Bike Lanes. Bike Lanes is not fiction but it is hilarious and it has a very deep political message.
Space Alone was nominated for several awards and was screened at film festivals around the world; including an official screening at Times Square in New York for the Flash On campaign by Adobe.
Directed by Tom Kuntz and Mike Maguire, Frontier Psychiatrist is a music video taken from The Avalanches first album “Since I left you”. The video clip was nº 19 in the Top 50 Music Videos of the 2000s for Pitchfork Media. If you find this too strange just remember that the boy needs therapy.
Sweet Night Good Heart
The Cookie Thief
Featuring David Tennant and Kate Ashfield, Sweet Night Good Heart is a story of a man looking to break up with his girlfriend. Unfortunately, things don’t go as expected and instead of breaking up she thinks he is proposing. After that all hell breaks loose.
The Cookie Thief is a movie directed by Korinna Sehringer and it tells the story of a young woman on an airport waiting for her flight for Istanbul. While she waits she decides to buy a pack of cookies to eat while she reads a magazine and everything goes well until the man sitting beside her starts eating the cookies.
Sweet Night Good Heart was directed by Dan Zeff in 2001 and those who haven’t seen it yet should definitely get to know it. A very funny short movie. www.youtube.com/watch?v=xnW_Et6H7wQ
A great short movie with a very clever final twist, see if you can spot it before the end. www.atom.com/funny_videos/cookie_thief/
It all started when Casey Neistat received a $50 ticket for not riding his bike exclusively on the bike lane even after he tried to explain that the bike lane is not always safe. To prove his point he made this video where he rides his bike on the bike lane and finds all sort of obstacles. www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzE-IMaegzQ
By C. Williams Simon Ba
Internet For Idiots
Got a question about the internet that's so dumb you dare not ask your friends? Our resident internet expert is here to help. Mind though, he’s a little bit impatient. I heard that if someone knows my computer's IP address, they can find out where I live? Is this true? Gary, Bristol via email Well Gary it depends what you've done to make someone want to track you. If - for example – you 'did a Fred West' on your wife, and live-blogged the event for a laugh, then yes the police have the authority to find the IP address of the computer that made the blog posts, contact your ISP and locate your exact household. If on the other hand, you had a steamy session with the wife's sister and live-blogged the event for a laugh, then there's no legal basis for your ISP to hand out your address (no crime has been committed). Your wife could still obtain the blog's IP address and legally track you down to the city you're in, but that's probably as far as she'll get. I've heard lots on the news about hackers recently and it scares me. Am I going to get hacked? Sarah, London via email Well as the saying goes 'to escape a bear attack you don't have to be faster than the bear, just faster than those around you'. According to Internet World Statistics, there are currently over 2 billion people using the internet. Now that's plenty of tasty human meat for a relatively small amount of bears. Chances are hackers aren't going to be interested in your boring life and there are probably millions of people out there much more computer savvy than your good self - and therefore easier targets. So unless you post a blog saying “all hackers are spotty geeks” then you're probably safe enough. But of course, it's always a good idea to use different passwords for different internet accounts, ensure you change your passwords every now and then, and get some decent virus protection software. Uganda's ex-minister for vegetable exports just emailed me. He's on the run from false allegations of corruption and needs a safe place to launder $750,000, should I give him my bank details? John, Dartford via email Yes, by all means give him your bank details. You should probably also give him your address, your national insurance number, passport number, shoe size, and a detailed account of what was going through your mind the last time you sat on the toilet. After all, it's impossible to lie over email, isn't it? Yeah, I'm pretty sure the anti-virus software will just wipe any lies from your inbox. Oh by the way, heard about the one with the ex-minister's son who needed a UK account to safeguard oil money in Nigeria? We have! When I use Google I sometimes get different search results to my friends, despite searching for exactly the same thing. Why? Steven, London via email News flash Steven! Google keeps a record of what your computer searches for. It then uses those records to direct relevant advertisements at you and tailor your search results based on what it thinks you want. So, for example, if you search for something innocuous like 'bowler hats', but you also spent the last week intensely searching for scantily clad girls wearing bowler hats', then you may want to make sure your wife/girlfriend leaves the room before you hit the enter key. I think my computer is turning into a hypochondriac. Do I really need all this expensive virus protection software? Dale, via email Hi Dale. When it comes to virus protection software, always keep in mind that manufacturers of security software have a vested interest in playing-up the scale and threat of computer viruses, often praying on people's computer illiteracy. With a little common sense - i.e. avoiding dodgy sites, unknown email attachments etc - you can keep your PC nice and healthy by using free virus protection software like Avast, Avira or AVG. These options require a bit more effort to set-up, and keep updated, but you don't have to shell-out £30 to Norton or McAfee every year.
I am a member of four online dating sites and I never get a response when I message other single ladies, what am I doing wrong? Dave from Essex Firstly, this is for “internet for idiots” not “internet for the desperate.” Besides, we’ve seen your photo – a bare chest doesn’t really work anymore. It is an over sell and the ladies will most probably feel you swiped the picture anyway. Also, the women you are approaching prefer financial strength rather than physical strength. Your biceps are not going to offer Sarah from London, or Sharon from Bristol a Prada bag. We suggest you ditch the picture, and sell yourself according to the needs of the market out there. Good luck, you’ll need it. I use Facebook for social interaction, and some pictures of me posted by so called friends are terrible, and I just want to delete them to avoid others seeing them, I have tried several times but the pictures are still there, please help Nigel from Liverpool Ah, Facebook users interface. Not the best, get in line. Send a group message to all your mates asking them not to tag your pictures, or post any new ones, as you may not be a natural pin up. As for the pictures already on there, if you don’t have 5 hours to spare figuring out how to delete unfavourable pictures, may I suggest you use Photoshop to completely manipulate distance shots of yourself.and fill up your page with these, at least with a large amount of new pictures to cover the unfavourable ones, it would reduce the embarrassment. Dear support, I tend to enjoy visiting adult websites, and I have a preference for very racy video clips. Problem is – the missus sees the links when she uses the same computer, I then get a right bullocking and a lot of hassle when this happens. How do I cover my surfing tracks? Errol from London First of all – this isn’t a provider’s help centre, so enough with the “dear support”. We recommend you spend less than 8 hours a day on these unsavoury websites. If you insist on being a sticky finger, then best thing to do is open a new user account on your computer, and password it. Title the user account as “office work” the missus should then understand that you needed to protect confidential work files from non-authorized users of the computer. You will then have all the time you need, and you can surf xxx sites to your hearts content, even bookmark without fear, you would then be able to visit all those virus laden sites on a regular basis without fear of getting caught out. The missus won’t be able to challenge you with this.
Surreal and Harmonic Art online True geniuses like Lucas De Camillo and others provide a dreamy look into the world out there. We picked a few here to share with you. So let your imagination soar and enjoy these treasures.
1 : echoes.lucasdecamillo.com/page/5 / 2 : echoes.lucasdecamillo.com/page/5 / 3 : echoes.lucasdecamillo.com/page/5 4 : echoes.lucasdecamillo.com/post/1306891838 / 5 : echoes.lucasdecamillo.com / 6 : echoes.lucasdecamillo.com 7 : izismile.com/2009/04/20/hermetic_art_54_pics.html