Monday, June 22, 2015

Apple bows to Taylor Swift on streaming payments

Tech giant Apple late Sunday bowed to pressure from pop superstar Taylor Swift and raised payments to artists for its forthcoming music streaming service.

Swift, saying that she was speaking up for artists afraid of upsetting Apple, had called the company's behavior "shocking" over its earlier plan not to pay for streams during customers' initial three-month free trial.

Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of Internet software and services, said late Sunday that the company had shifted course and would compensate for streams in all stages.
Apple music "will pay artist(s) for streaming, even during (customers') free trial period," he wrote on Twitter.

Nokia Confirms Plan To Return To Phone Market In 2016

So much for terse denials. Former world number one mobile maker Nokia, which sold its device making unit to Microsoft last year, is indeed intending to get back into the mobile game next year — when a Microsoft contract clause that currently prevents it from putting its brand name on handsets lapses.
Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri told Germany’s Manager Magazin the company intends to design and license handsets next year, and will “look for suitable partners” (via Reuters). “We would simply design them and then make the brand name available to license,” he added.
This is not in the least surprising. Even as it looks to slough off its Here maps business, Nokia has been keeping its hand in the mobile business, designing and selling an Android tablet in China, and launching its own Android launcher last summer.

Classy Denise Richards responds to ex Charlie Sheen's erratic Father's Day Twitter rant after he brands her a 'washed up piglet shame pile'

By MailOnline Reporter

Appearing to take her former spouse's cutting words on the chin, the 44-year-old actress decided to take the moral high ground and simply wish the former Two And A Half Men star a 'happy Father's Day' on behalf of their two daughters, Sam, 11, and Lola, 10.
And while she went for the classy approach when it came to responding to her ex's somewhat bizarre slurs, Denise admitted her girls were 'disappointed' they couldn't spend the special day with their dad.
Two can play at that game: Denise Richards has responded to her ex-husband Charlie Sheen's erratic rant, in which he branded her a 'washed-up piglet shame pile'
In a series of Twitter posts, Denise wrote: 'Happy Dad's Day! @charliesheen have a great trip in Mexico! Kids were disappointed u weren't here for it- Hey we'll celebrate when u r back!
'And Happy Fathers Day to all the dads including my own dad Irv! Best dad ever & an amazing Grandpa!'

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Sumatran Agate

Indonesia is made up of islands, lots of them, in fact, over 17000 islands. The origins of these islands vary from coral atolls, continental masses or slivers, accreted oceanic wedges and volcanoes rising from the sea floor. All told, it's a great place to hunt rocks formed by hot volcanic fluids circulating thru a multitude of differing geology.
Ornamental jaspers, agates and thunder-eggs are common across the country. Indonesians love natural stone with graphic beauty. There is a big following for picture stones across the country. I have seen agates from Timor, Irian Jaya, Kalimantan, Java and Sumatra. I am sure there are many more locations than I’ll ever have time to see.
The stone markets in Surabaya and Jakarta have a constant flow of new materials. Yet of all the Indonesian agates I have seen to date, none exhibit more variety of color and complexity than the Sumatran Agate (Photos #1 & #2).

java map   java map

Emma Stone, Jennifer Lawrence, and Scarlett Johansson Have an Older-Man Problem

Emma Stone is a mere 26 years old, but in the last cinematic year, she’s had four onscreen love-interests who were over 40, including two male characters who were impotent. Jennifer Lawrence is Hollywood’s most in-demand young actress, but ever since she won her Oscar, it’s hard for her to find a screen lover who isn’t approaching middle age. And Scarlett Johansson has been paired with older actors so often that when she romanced Mark Ruffalo in this summer’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, their 17-year age difference was the least nitpicked aspect of their union. These three young, smoky-voiced actresses are often referred to as wise beyond their years, and in 2015, they’ve all got the graying love-interests to match that perception. It isn’t news that Hollywood likes to pair its older men with younger women, but as these charts will show, there’s surely something unusual going on when the three hottest actresses in the 30-and-under bracket are routinely steered toward men of a certain age.

Lightning's third line making life tough for Blackhawks

CHICAGO -- Had you told Cedric Paquette back in training camp that he would score two goals in the opening three games of the Stanley Cup finals nine months later, the Tampa Bay Lightning rookie definitely wouldn't have believed it.
"I would have said that he’s crazy," Paquette said in French on Monday night after scoring the game-winner. "I really couldn’t have predicted that."