Greece faces time pressures after vote

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Parliament’s approval early Monday of the terms of a new bailout for Greece appeared to have paved the way for Athens to receive more loans from the eurozone and the International Monetary Fund but the political fallout from the vote led to the confirmation that the interim government will not serve beyond April and may have sped up the process for electing a new PASOK leader. Government spokesman Pantelis Kapsis confirmed that Prime Minister Lucas Papademos’s coalition government will keep to the commitment made when it was formed in November, which will see elections called as soon as Greece’s eurozone partners approve a new loan package of at least 130 billion euros and the bond restructuring process is completed. “The bond swap will be concluded in March,” said Kapsis. “Elections will be held in April.” Greece faces a tight schedule over the next few weeks in order to secure the bailout and the haircut, or private sector involvement (PSI), before March 20, when two Greek bonds worth 14.5 billion euros mature. Without further loans, Athens faces the prospect of a default. Eurozone finance ministers are due to meet on Wednesday, by which time Greece will also have to detail how it will make 325 million euros of savings on top of some 3 billion that it has already agreed with the troika of the IMF, European Commission and European Central Bank. The other demand that the Eurogroup made last week is that coalition leaders George Papandreou of PASOK and New Democracy’s Antonis Samaras provide written commitments that their parties will stick to the agreed program after the general elections. Sources told Kathimerini that Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos has supplied the two leaders with the letters that they need to sign. Should the Eurogroup give the green light for a new bailout, the PSI deal will be announced by the end of the week and bondholders will be given roughly two weeks to accept the offer made by Athens. Venizelos has said that a deal needs to be concluded by February 17. This week the troika is also due to produce a report on Greece’s debt sustainability, which European policymakers will use to decide whether they need to increase the loans to Greece or whether other measures need to be taken. A final decision is expected at the European Union leaders’ summit on March 1 and 2. In the meantime, the fact that the bailout vote led to 22 PASOK deputies and 21 ND lawmakers being expelled from their parliamentary groups is likely to hasten political developments. Sources said that the process of electing a new PASOK leader is to be hastened, with the vote possibly taking place this week. Venizelos is the favorite to take over from Papandreou but may step down as finance minister afterward. It is for this reason that Papademos might hold off conducting a reshuffle. In any case, the prime minister is only expected to name a replacement for Transport Minister Makis Voridis, who quit last week, rather than conduct an extensive shake-up. Source: Kathimerinilast_img read more

Bids made for hydrocarbon permits

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Greece’s energy ministry had received three bids for the concession of licences for the surveying and utilisation of hydrocarbons in 20 areas in the Ionian Sea and south of Crete, although capital controls do not allow for the publication of the companies’ names and the specific areas in question.Bids must reportedly remain sealed because investors are unable to submit the necessary letters of guarantee (amounting to €100,000 per bid), as the tender rules dictated that those letters should be issued by Greek banks or foreign banks with a branch in Athens.To overcome this, the ministry ruled to open offers 10 working days after the banks opened. With three bids submitted under the interim arrangements, a ministry spokesperson said: “This number can be considered as a positive step in the country’s effort to utilise its undersea wealth.” Sources reported a bid from Hellenic Petroleum in cooperation with a major multinational, possibly France’s Total and/or Italy’s Edison. It is possible the same consortium submitted all three bids.Source: Kathimerinilast_img read more

Maras Group unveils exciting new Nova cinema complex in Prospect

first_imgA new $20 million, 14-screen cinema project in Prospect, north of Adelaide’s CBD, is expected to be an entertainment complex of the highest standard in design and finish, incorporating many classic architectural elements including a distinctive 1930s Art Deco theme. According to managing director and CEO of Maras Group, Steve Maras, the cinemas will be boutique in nature and unlike anything else seen in South Australia, with some of the smaller cinemas catering for just 25-30 people. “We are developing a strong mix of retail and food operators on the ground level to complement the cinemas and hope to deliver a product that will provide a vibrant, entertainment-based centre operating seven-days a week,” Maras said. The building is designed to achieve an outstanding energy efficiency rating and will be absolutely ground-breaking as an inner-suburban, main road development, including: – Up to six retail shops, cafes & restaurants on the ground floor of around 600 square metres; – 14 exclusive boutique cinemas over two levels to be operated by Palace Nova Cinemas; – 1,100 square metres of A-grade commercial office space on the top floor, with balconies and stunning views in all directions; – two levels of undercover on-site car parking for 54 vehicles plus bikes and motorcycles at the rear.Construction and tenant fit-out costs are likely to exceed $20m, while it is envisaged that the development will generate in excess of 300 jobs; a welcome boost for employment in the state.With the demolition of existing buildings starting this week, construction is expected to commence in June or July, with a 12-month building program timeline. “We spent several years designing a building that was going to be a perfect fit for this site and that would accommodate a range of complementary mixed uses,” says Maras. In 2008, South Australian-based commercial and retail property development outfit the Maras Group purchased the row of old retail shop and factory buildings in the Village Heart of Prospect Road to redevelop into a mixed-use cinema complex.The group has had a successful 20-year relationship with the Palace Nova Cinema group from Melbourne, having brought Nova Cinemas to Adelaide back in 1996. The East End Nova Cinemas were built in Rundle Street East and have thrived in that location ever since. Combined over two sites in the East End of Adelaide, the Palace Nova consortium operates 10 cinema screens.“Over the last eight years or so while Maras Group tackled a variety of planning and design challenges, we granted short-term leases to a large number of small businesses, including popular urban renewal organisation Renew Adelaide, to keep all the spaces activated, to foster employment, encourage entrepreneurialism, and keep the Village Heart of Prospect Road ticking along,” says Maras. The state government’s 30-year plan for greater Adelaide allowed the Maras Group to build to four levels – instead of two – under the previous planning regime. Planning consent for the project was obtained in 2014 followed by Building Rules Consent in 2015, after a comprehensive detailed design process.“We experienced various planning issues earlier on and realised that without a relaxing of the building height restrictions that prevailed at the time, the project would not go ahead. “With all approvals now in place and the design for both the building and cinemas locked away, we are ready to start this project. “A project that will bring a new dimension to Prospect Road and the inner-north,” concludes Maras. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Turkish lawyer claims to be Christ

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram A Turkish lawyer has sued his family for dismissing his claims that he is Jesus Christ. Ismail Taksiran first made the claim in 2011 and was met with a harsh reaction from his kin, who beat him, insulted him and prevented him from fasting, praying and practising his religion.Last week, the man took his father, mother, brother and sister to court, demanding that each pay him 10,000 lira as damages. The trial has been postponed.last_img

Celebrating diversity with the Hellenic Police Association

first_imgThe Victorian Police Force is embracing Cultural Diversity in a bigger way than ever before. Victoria has historically been hailed as the leading Multicultural State and has enshrined this through  legislation and the community advocacy work of the Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria.In the wake of Cultural Diversity Week, the ECCV Chairperson Cr Kris Pavlidis attended the headquarters of Victoria Police for the launch of the African Police employee Network.An established Victorian institution, Victoria Police works in close collaboration with ECCV Chairperson and community leaders from our Multicultural community.The Hellenic Police Association has a growing  membership and is led by Inspector Andrew Markakis and Senior Sargent Efti.  “Multiculturalism is one of Victorias most important assets that continues to enrich our lives and grow our economy. It is more important than ever before that we work together in an inclusive and respectful manner toward a socially cohesive and harmonious society” says Cr Kris Pavlidis. The message of strength in diversity is echoed by Inspector Markakis and Commander Bateson. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

Apple Disney est conquis par liPad

first_imgApple : Disney est conquis par l’iPadÉtats-Unis – Le groupe Walt Disney Company a fait part de son grand intérêt pour la tablette Internet d’Apple, l’iPad. Selon Bob Iger, le patron du groupe de médias et de loisirs, cette tablette possède un véritable potentiel qui pourrait lui permettre de développer de nouvelles formes de contenus.Le PDG du groupe Disney se montre vraiment séduit par le potentiel de la tablette Internet d’Apple : “Avec toutes ses possibilités interactives, l’iPad pourrait nous permettre de créer de nouvelles formes de contenus” autres que de simples jeux et vidéos, estime en effet Bob Iger. À lire aussiiPad Air 2 et iPad Mini 3 : que faut-il savoir des nouvelles tablettes dévoilées par Apple ?”L’interactivité qu’il permettra sur un appareil portable, avec un écran d’une aussi grande qualité, nous permettra de vraiment commencer à développer des produits différents de ce que vous avez sur un ordinateur connecté à Internet ou sur une télévision” poursuit-il avant d’évoquer sa librairie numérique DisneyDigitalBooks, qui propose de nombreux livres électroniques pour enfants. D’après Disney, l’iPad pourrait être un support idéal pour cette bibliothèque qui démarre lentement sur PC.Bob Iger voit également en cette tablette Internet la possibilité de développer des activités interactives autour de certaines séries ou ABC News. Et Bob Iger de souligner que “les médias numériques évoluent encore, nous en sommes au début du début”.Le 11 février 2010 à 10:18 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Archéologie les squelettes de 80 gladiateurs exhumés en GrandeBretagne découvrez les images

first_imgArchéologie : les squelettes de 80 gladiateurs exhumés en Grande-Bretagne, découvrez les imagesGrande-Bretagne – Si les combats de gladiateurs font généralement penser à la Rome antique, des historiens pensent avoir mis au jour un cimetière regroupant les corps de plusieurs dizaines de ces guerriers dans le nord de l’Angleterre. Vieux de 2.000 ans, les restes de près de quatre-vingts jeunes hommes, tous ayant succombé à de profondes et multiples blessures, ont été exhumés par une équipe d’archéologues près de la ville de York. Leur découverte a tout d’abord laissé de nombreux spécialistes pantois, ceux-ci supposant que ces corps témoignaient d’une exécution de masse survenue dans la région il y a deux millénaires.  À lire aussiOstéoporose : traitement, symptômes, causes, définition, de quoi s’agit-il ?Mais en y regardant de plus près, archéologues et médecins légistes pensent avoir résolu le “mystère” engendré par cette étonnante découverte. Pour eux, les blessures caractéristiques relevées sur les corps, et en particulier de nombreuses décapitations et une morsure de fauve, prouvent que ces hommes n’étaient autres que des gladiateurs, ayant connu une fin tragique et sanglante. Pour le Dr. Michael Wysocki, maître de conférence en anthropologie médico-légale : “La présence de traces de morsure est l’une des preuves les plus évidentes suggérant une connexion avec les arènes. Il semble peu plausible que cet individu ait été attaqué par un tigre alors qu’il rentrait chez lui à York, il y a 2.000 ans !” Pour découvrir les images des fouilles archéologiques : https://www.maxisciences.com/squelette/gladiateurs-des-dizaines-de-squelettes-exhumes-en-angleterre_art7682.htmlLe 7 juin 2010 à 13:28 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Réchauffement climatique lONU appelle les pays riches à plus de clarté

first_imgRéchauffement climatique : l’ONU appelle les pays riches à plus de clartéA l’occasion d’un sommet organisé par Reuters sur le climat mondial et les énergies alternatives, la secrétaire exécutive de la convention cadre de l’ONU sur les changements climatiques, Christiana Figueres, a appelé les pays riches à faire preuve de plus de clarté quant à leurs objectifs de réduction des émissions de gaz à effet de serre. Une transparence nécessaire à la réussite du sommet de Cancun.Cette conférence internationale sur la lutte contre le réchauffement climatique, qui se tiendra au Mexique du 29 novembre au 10 décembre, n’aboutira pas à un traité contraignant capable de succéder au protocole de Kyoto. Toutefois, pour poser les bases d’un accord, les nations riches doivent clarifier leurs engagements, insiste Christiana Figueres.”Il est absolument crucial que les promesses d’atténuation qui sont sur la table soient formalisées et reconnues comme étant une première étape nécessaire mais insuffisante” a-t-elle déclaré, avant d’ajouter que “les gouvernements doivent redoubler d’efforts d’ici Cancun”. Les promesses de réduction des émissions de gaz à effet de serre actuelles ne permettraient pas de limiter la hausse des températures sous le seuil de 2°C par rapport à la période pré-industrielle, le seul objectif fixé lors du sommet de Copenhague l’année dernière. Par ailleurs, ces engagements sont dans certains cas conditionnés à ceux d’autres États. Ainsi, l’Union européenne qui projette de réduire ses émissions de 20% d’ici 2020 par rapport aux niveaux de 1990 envisage de porter l’objectif à 30%, si d’autres s’y engagent à leur tour. Quant au Japon, il se dit prêt à réduire de 25% ses émissions de gaz à effet de serre, mais uniquement si l’ONU parvient à obtenir un accord international ambitieux.Le 14 octobre 2010 à 16:19 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

PocketBook IQ une nouvelle venue dans la famille des liseuses électroniques en

first_imgPocketBook IQ : une nouvelle venue dans la famille des liseuses électroniques, en imagesFrance – Le 27 octobre, PocketBook annonçait la sortie prochaine de sa PocketBook IQ, une liseuse électronique compacte. Disponible le 15 novembre prochain, celle-ci pourrait bientôt rivaliser avec le Kindle d’Amazon ou la Nook de Barnes & Noble. Le PocketBook IQ se présente comme un “livre électronique multimédia nomade”, mettant en avant son poids de 520 grammes et sa finesse. Il faut avouer que l’IQ se glisse facilement dans un sac, et qu’elle peut réellement être transportée partout. Elle est disponible en rouge, bleu ou blanc. Fonctionnalité précieuse, l’IQ possède un logiciel de synthèse vocale qui permet de lire les textes des livres électroniques avec une voix naturelle, ce qui offre aux malvoyants et aux personnes âgées la possibilité d’écouter le récit de leurs livres favoris. Autre atout, le dictionnaire ABBYY qui équipe cette tablette et permet de définir rapidement les termes qui pourraient poser problème lors d’une séance d’e-lecture.  En plus de sa fonction liseuse, la PocketBook IQ est également un lecteur multimédia qui permet d’écouter de la musique, de regarder des photos et des vidéos en haute qualité, sur son écran tactile couleur TFT de 7”. Elle est compatible avec la majeure partie de formats de fichiers et peut se connecter à Internet via le Wi-Fi. Le système d’exploitation Android 2.0 permet de télécharger un nombre impressionnant d’applications pour personnaliser son IQ selon ses envies et ses besoins.À lire aussiiPad Mini : la coque qui révèle ce que peut être la tabletteCôté technique, la liseuse est dotée d’une mémoire interne de 2 Go, qui peut être élargie par carte SD pour une plus grande capacité de stockage. Le prix public conseillé est de 170 euros. Découvrez l’IQ en images : https://www.maxisciences.com/pocketbook-iq/les-images-de-la-liseuse-pocketbook-iq_art10079.htmlLe 31 octobre 2010 à 13:18 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Les enfants en poussette seraient trop exposés à la pollution

first_imgLes enfants en poussette seraient trop exposés à la pollutionL’Association santé environnement de France a fait savoir à travers une récente étude que les enfants installés dans des poussettes inhaleraient un taux de particules fines élevé, ce qui pourrait s’avérer dangereux pour la santé.Pour l’Association santé environnement de France (Asef), il ne serait pas très sain pour les enfants d’être baladés en poussette en ville. Ainsi, l’association prévient que les enfants seraient alors à hauteur des pots d’échappement et seraient exposés à un taux de particules fines trop élevé. L’étude de l’Asef explique que durant les déplacements en centre-ville, les enfants en poussette inhaleraient jusqu’à deux fois la dose limite de particules fines, fixée par l’Organisation mondiale de santé.Pour les besoins de cette expérience, deux poussettes ont été équipées de capteurs de pollution, et ont été baladées dans le centre ville d’Aix-en-Provence le 10 mars dernier, rapporte L’Express. L’association explique ainsi : “Sur les deux parcours, matin comme soir, les taux ne sont quasiment jamais inférieurs à 20 microgrammes par mètre cube”, un chiffre en accord avec l’objectif de qualité de l’air déterminé par l’Union européenne, mais bien trop élevé par rapport aux recommandations de l’Organisation mondiale de la santé. D’après l’Institut de veille sanitaire, ces microparticules seraient cancérigènes et la cause de nombreux problèmes de santé chez l’enfant.Le 31 mars 2011 à 20:15 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Chrome progresse aux dépens dInternet Explorer

first_imgChrome progresse aux dépens d’Internet ExplorerSelon les chiffres mis à jour le mois dernier par Net Applications, le navigateur Chrome de Google a dépassé les 13% de parts de marché.Les chiffres dévoilés par Net applications concernant les navigateurs Internet révèlent que Chrome possède 13,11% de parts de marché avec une progression de 0,59%. Cette augmentation représente exactement la baisse enregistrée à la même période par Internet Explorer qui est passé de 54,27% à 53,68%, toutes versions confondues. Firefox conserve une avance confortable en se maintenant à plus de 21% et ne perdant que 0,04% de parts de marché entre mai et juin.Si on constate que la progression de Chrome s’est faite aux dépens d’Internet Explorer, le navigateur de Microsoft devrait reprendre du poil de la bête avec le développement de Windows 7, que la firme considère comme l’indicateur des tendances à venir. Le 4 juillet 2011 à 18:54 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Intempéries neuf départements du sudest de la France placés en alerte orange

first_imgIntempéries : neuf départements du sud-est de la France placés en alerte orangeTouchés par de fortes pluies et de violents orages, neuf départements du sud-est du pays ont été placés ce vendredi en alerte orange par Météo France. Alors que des inondations sont à craindre, ces intempéries ont peut-être déjà fait une victime.Neuf départements du sud de la France ont été placés en alerte orange par Météo France. Valable jusqu’à samedi matin, elle est due aux fortes pluies et orages qui devraient toucher la région jusqu’à dimanche soir. Les Alpes-Maritimes, l’Ardèche, les Bouches-du-Rhône, la Drôme, le Gard, l’Hérault, la Lozère, le Var et le Vaucluse sont concernés par cette alerte, tandis que d’importantes précipitations sont également attendues dans les départements des Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, de l’Aude, de l’Aveyron et de la Haute-Loire, indique Météo Consult.Les intempéries ont peut-être même déjà fait une victime. Un homme vivant dans une caravane à Lézignan-la-Cèbe au bord de l’Hérault, est en effet porté disparu depuis ce vendredi midi, rapporte l’AFP. Il aurait été aperçu tentant de s’accrocher à des branches tôt ce matin, et a probablement été emporté par les eaux du fleuve en crue. “On a potentiellement là une victime des inondations, mais on continue les recherches”, a indiqué à l’agence un officier de communication du centre départemental de secours. Au même endroit, deux autres personnes ont pu être secourues.Une alerte rouge pour les crues avait également était émise dans l’Aveyron, la Lozère et l’Hérault, avant d’être levée suite à une accalmie des précipitations. Toutefois, les pluies devraient à nouveau se renforcer ce soir. Une grande vigilance est donc recommandée. En outre, quelque 4.000 lignes téléphoniques ont été endommagées dans le Languedoc-Roussillon jeudi. “Les services concernés sont le téléphone fixe et l’internet. Le réseau mobile n’est pas affecté”, a précisé Orange dans un communiqué, avant d’affirmer que mille techniciens avaient été mobilisés pour réparer le réseau.  Le 4 novembre 2011 à 16:25 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Lexar dévoile de nouvelles cartes Compact Flash ultrarapides

first_imgLexar dévoile de nouvelles cartes Compact Flash ultra-rapidesle fabricant Lexar a dévoilé les cartes mémoires CompactFlash les plus rapides du marché. Elles seront vendues en février prochain.Lexar Professional mettra très prochainement à disposition des utilisateurs des cartes mémoires Compact Flash dotées d’un débit de 1000x, c’est à dire offrant un débit de lecture minimum de 150 Mo/s. Il s’agira des cartes les plus rapides du marché. Disponibles dans différentes capacités de stockage, les cartes ont été testées et garanties pour des flux vidéo (en capture) avoisinant les 20 Mo/s. Elles sont donc compatibles avec la norme VPG-20, selon Les Numériques.Selon Manisha Sharma, Directeur Marketing produit pour les cartes chez Lexar, une telle carte offre “certaines des meilleures performances disponibles, non seulement pendant le processus de transfert des images dans l’appareil photo, mais aussi lorsque des images et vidéos animées sont transférées de la carte vers un ordinateur pour l’édition et le traitement”.Mme Sharma indique également que l’objectif de Lexar est “de permettre aux photographes de se concentrer sur la capture de superbes photos, y compris des images haute résolution et de vidéo HD ou 3D, au lieu de perdre un temps précieux lors du traitement en studio”. Les cartes Compact Flash Lexar Professionnal 1000x seront disponibles en quatre capacités : 16, 32, 64 et 128 GB. Elles seront commercialisées en février aux tarifs de 170 € (16 GB), 300 € (32 GB), 530 € (64 GB) et 900 € (128 GB). Elles seront par ailleurs livrées avec le logiciel de récupération des données perdue Image Rescue Photo Recovery.Le 7 janvier 2012 à 11:15 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Selfie addicts now suffering their own repetitive stress injury

first_imgThere’s a new plague sweeping our nation. If you’re not careful, you too may find yourself in its unforgiving grasp. What is this demonic affliction? They call it… Selfie elbow!Oh yes, it’s a real thing — every bit as real as text claw and iPad hand. Selfie elbow is similar to injuries you might sustain from doing actual physical activities like golfing or playing tennis. Except, you know, it’s caused by holding your phone in awkward positions with your arm outstretched while you make duckface or try to look like you have an 8-pack.Symptoms include pain, reduced range of movement, and loss of strength. This isn’t just an affliction that’s affecting the kiddies, either. Respectable and famous adults — like Today show hostess Hoda Kotb — are selfie elbow victims, too.Don’t go thinking that a selfie stick is the answer. While you might not be extending your arm quite so much, you’re still putting strain on the hand and arm you’re holding it with. Experts suggest using a two-handed grip… or a radical treatment that’s so crazy it just might work.Their recommended treatment for non-life-threatening cases of selfie elbow: take a break. Stop taking so many damn selfies and give your arm a little breather every now and then. Maybe put an ice pack on the sore part and do some stretches while you’re at it.Also pay more attention to your body and learn to recognize signs that it’s getting pissed about something you’re doing over and over… and over…Image courtesy torbakhopper/flickrlast_img read more

Shuffle Cats is Furry Gin Rummy from the Makers of Candy Crush

first_img Candy Crush Saga is pretty huge. Huge enough to pop up on everyone’s smartphones no matter little they care about video games, huge enough to make everyone forget what Bejeweled is, and huge enough to convince Activision Blizzard to pay nearly $6 billion for King, the makers of the match-3 puzzle game phenomenon. You’d think with a game that huge, King wouldn’t even bother making other software. After all, the only thing Riot Games makes is League of Legends, and that’s working out pretty well for them so far.But King isn’t resting on its throne. The company’s new game, Shuffle Cats, is available now and it represents a new direction for the team. Shuffle Cats is a furry take on the classic card game Gin Rummy, and it’s King’s first real-time, competitive multiplayer game.“We tried and tested various card games before agreeing that Rummy would work best,” said Ben Hollis, Lead Game Designer at King. Hollis frequently noted how King’s games are designed to be picked up and easily enjoyed when players have moments to spare. Shuffle Cats’ tweaks to the established Rummy formula reflect this philosophy.“We wanted to put our own twist on the game and make it fun and engaging for our players, so we’ve taken inspiration from the classic game of Rummy and updated it for a mobile audience,” said Hollis. “In the classic game, players are dealt seven cards, and the aim is to make melds in order to discard all seven cards. We’ve introduced a ‘refill’ mechanic in Shuffle Cats, so our players’ hand is replenished each time they discard a card or make a meld and the first player to receive 10 points wins the match.”I played some Shuffle Cats for myself and can confirm this fast-paced and streamlined take on Rummy does make it easier and more enjoyable to sneak in quick rounds throughout my day. The casual appeal, minigame distractions, and pleasantly high production values are also what you’d expect from the publisher. Meanwhile, the reliance on free-to-play currency, while not egregious, is what you’d expect from a mobile game. It’s funny, even though there’s no real gambling here, games like this can’t help but remind you how eerily similar the tactics casinos and free-to-play games both use.However, at least you don’t have to worry about unfair game balance in Shuffle Cats as your opponents are other humans you face off against in live multiplayer, a first for King.“Shuffle Cats differs from other games in our portfolio such as Candy Crush Saga and Farm Heroes Saga because the focus of the content in-game has shifted away from building new levels to players themselves,” said Hollis. “The game is inherently social. It sees players from all around the world being matched against each other in real time and allows players to communicate with one-another through the new pre-programmed chat features.”Shuffle Cats just recently fully launched, but it has been available in other parts of the world for a few months now in soft launch testing phases. A lot of mobile game developers do this to see how their games perform in real-world environments as well as roll out new features.“Like we do with all our games during the test phase, we refined Shuffle Cats and made certain adjustments to ensure that players have the best possible experience,” said Hollis. For example, during this testing phase, the team realized players love cats, especially swanky card-playing cartoon cats.Another feature implemented in testing is Walter’s Workshop. “Walter’s Workshop is a weekly live event that gives players the chance to compete for prizes, in a range of Walter’s wacky experiments,” said Hollis. “Every few weeks, players will be treated to a different set of game rules. Rummy naturally lends itself to gameplay twists, but with the Lucky Charms as well, the ideas list is even bigger.”After years of profiting from our collective addiction to Candy Crush, King is hoping we can tear ourselves away for just one moment to fall into the welcoming paws of Shuffle Cats. See for yourself if the gamble will work by checking out Shuffle Cats on iOS and Android today. Stay on target Get Ready for More Candy Crush Saga as CBS Announces New Game ShowActivision Blizzard acquires Candy Crush maker King for $5.9 billion last_img read more

McDonalds Frork May be The Greatest Fast Food Invention of All Time

first_imgStay on target McDonald’s Turns Billboards Into Bee HotelsMcDonald’s Plans to Serve AI Voice Technology at Drive Thru You would think that advances in fork technology peaked years ago but, somehow, McDonald’s has found a way to improve upon perfection. The famed fast food restaurant chain has created the “frork” which is a fork with french fries for prongs. I assure you that this isn’t a hoax. This is a real thing, and it is glorious.The frork can be seen in this hilarious infomercial-style video which features everyone’s favorite pitchman, Anthony Sullivan. Here, the frork is billed as the solution for unwanted messes that happen while eating McDonald’s food. Instead of grabbing fries to wipe up spilled secret sauce, you can use the frork. Granted that you would have to use your hands to insert the fries into the frork’s handle, but that’s a minor, insignificant detail. Look how easy it is to use!In a press release, McDonald’s Chef Michael Haracz said: “We started with All Day Breakfast, updated our Chicken McNuggets, offered new Mac sandwich sizes for every occasion, and now we’re introducing Signature Crafted Recipes because they are inspired by our customers. And while the Frork is supremely superfluous, it shows that McDonald’s is willing to do whatever it takes to help them enjoy every last bite.”As Mister Haracz pointed out, McDonald’s will have three new Signature Crafted Recipes sandwiches. These are Maple Bacon Dijon, Pico Guacamole, and Sweet BBQ Bacon. These sandwiches are stuffed with sauces and toppings that you can mop up with the frork. The synergy here is mind-blowing.The frork will make its glorious debut this Friday, May 5 at select McDonald’s locations. You can get this revolutionary utensil by purchasing one of the aforementioned Signature Crafted Recipes sandwiches.How anyone will be able to top the frork is hard to say. But Burger King and Wendy’s had better step their game up if they want to catch up to McDonald’s now.last_img read more

PC Gamers Will Have to Wait a Bit Longer for Sonic Mania

first_img Hands-On: ‘Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020’ Seems FineLive-Action ‘Sonic the Hedgehog’ Delayed to 2020 Stay on target Sonic Mania will finally release next week for console owners. Unfortunately, PC users will have to wait a tad longer to get their hands on it.During a livestream, Sega revealed the PC port of Sonic Mania will now launch on August 29. That is exactly two weeks after it releases on PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. Sega decided to delay this release in order to better optimize the game.Those who pre-ordered the collector’s edition of Sonic Mania will still get their big beautiful box on August 15. Along with goodies such as a statue of Sonic standing on top of a Sega Genesis, the collector’s edition comes with a digital code for Sonic Mania. This code won’t unlock the game until August 29 for PC users, but it will allow them to claim a free copy of Sonic the Hedgehog.Sonic Mania has been delayed several times already, so this announcement certainly stings. At the same time, the game is being delayed for a good reason. We’re always hearing about how buggy games are at launch these days. This is something the Sonic team doesn’t want for Sonic Mania, so they’re taking their time to get things right.In other Sonic Mania news, Sega recently released a video of the game’s intro. We got to see a small portion of this a few months back, so it’s nice to see the full thing. Sonic Mania is heavily inspired by Sonic CD, and this animated intro is no different in that regard. If Sega ever decides to make a new Sonic cartoon, it would be wise for them to go with a style like this. I’ve seen the intro of Sonic CD more times than I can count, and I’ll certainly watch the intro for Sonic Mania a ton of times too. Everything about it is fantastic.If you haven’t already, you can still pre-order Sonic Mania from Amazon.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more

Scientists Capture Rare Footage of Giant Squid in Gulf of Mexico

first_imgStay on target A rare, giant squid made an appearance on camera, delighting scientists who were exploring the deep waters in the Gulf of Mexico for a sighting of the elusive deep-sea creature.Researchers working with NOAA’s Office of Ocean Exploration and Research spotted the giant squid just 100 miles off the coast of New Orleans on Wednesday. They identified it in video captured by Medusa, an underwater camera system that features a lighting system designed to mimic a bioluminescent jellyfish.The expedition was part of the NOAA Journey into Midnight mission, which is investigating deep, dark areas of the Gulf of Mexico below 3,800 feet, known as the bathypelagic (midnight) zone.“We knew immediately that it was a squid. It was also big, but because it was coming straight at the camera, it was impossible to tell exactly how big. But big – at least 3 to 3.7 meters (10 to 12 feet) long,” Duke University Professor Sonke Johnsen and Ocean Research & Conservation Association CEO Edie Widder said in a blog post.Squid expert Michael Vecchione at the NOAA National Marine Fisheries Services – National Systematics Laboratory at the Smithsonian later said that he was “nearly certain” that the creature filmed was a juvenile giant squid.Footage released by NOAA shows the giant squid approaching Medusa, its tentacles flaring as though it had mistaken the camera for an actual jellyfish and was preparing to attack.After beginning to wrap its tentacles around Medusa, the squid appeared to have realized that something was not right and disappeared back into the dark depths of the ocean.Researchers of the NOAA Journey into Midnight mission gather around to watch the squid video. (Photo Credit: Courtesy of Danté Fenolio)The scientists said previous submersible dives had failed to film giant squid in the Gulf of Mexico.“This suggests that the animal does not like the bright lights of ROVs and that stealth monitoring of the sort possible with the Medusa can allow us to see what has never been seen before,” Johnsen and Widder wrote.In the blog post, the scientists also wrote that the squid was spotted in an area that was often depicted in old maps as containing “monsters” with warnings to sailors in the area.“We did not find a monster. The giant squid is large and certainly unusual from our human perspective, but if the video shows anything of the animal’s character, it shows an animal surprised by its mistake, backing off after striking at something that at first must have seemed appealing but was obviously not food,” Widder and Johnsen said.They added: “Our perspective as humans has changed. What were once monsters to be feared are now curious and magnificent creatures that delight. We like to feel that science and exploration has brought about this change, making the world less scary and more wondrous with each new thing we learn.”Recovering the Medusa camera. (Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dante Fenolio)The giant squid remains largely a mystery to scientists despite being the biggest invertebrate on Earth, according to National Geographic. The largest of these elusive giants ever found measured 59 feet in length and weighed nearly a ton.Giant squid, along with their cousin, the colossal squid, have the largest eyes in the animal kingdom, measuring some 10 inches in diameter, National Geographic said.Their inhospitable deep-sea habitat has made them uniquely difficult to study, and almost everything scientists know about them is from carcasses that have washed up on beaches or been hauled in by fishermen.But in 2004, researchers in Japan took the first images ever of a live giant squid. And in late 2006, scientists with Japan’s National Science Museum caught and brought to the surface a live 24-foot female giant squid. In 2012, a research team collaborating with the Discovery Channel spotted another giant squid and filmed it in its natural habitat thousands of feet beneath the surface. Now, scientists have filmed the elusive giant squid — and in America’s “backyard,” too.More on Geek.com:‘Headless Chicken Monster’ Spotted in Southern OceanSquid Protein Could Be an Eco-Friendly Alternative to Plastics, Study FindsWatch: Mysterious Sea Squirt Spotted in the Deepest Part of Indian Ocean Watch: Great White Shark Bumps Into Boat Near Whale CarcassMan Paddles 2,900 Miles Across Pacific to Help Curb Ocean Pollution last_img read more

Finally You Can Play Apex Legends By Yourself

first_img There are many ways to enjoy battle royale games. Millions upon millions of players wouldn’t be so devoted to them if there wasn’t a little variety. You can team up with friends to fight other squads, making use of tense tactics. Or you can play by yourself for a full-blown horror experience as you desperately try to survive the encroaching doom.Apex Legends has found great success exploring the team-based side of battle royale games. The different Legends all gave different characters abilities, creating a complementary three-person squad is part of the strategy. But there’s been no way to see how characters like Lifeline or Octane would fare out on their own with no backup. Until now. Check out this new trailer for Apex Legends’ new solo mode.The Iron Crown Collection Event comes as part of Apex Legends season two. Whereas Fortnite’s limited events are wacky movie tie-ins based on Avengers or John Wick, this limited time event finally brings the solo mode featured in nearly all battle royale games to Apex Legends. We have to assume that Respawn is just using this as a test, seeing how character balance holds up in this new isolated context, before rolling out a permanent solo mode.As a “free” game, the Iron Crown Collection Event also brings tons of new goodies to unlock or just purchase. There are 24 new items to collect, from powerful weapons to gorgeous character skins, using the new Crown currency earned from beating special challenges. The perks come at an even pricier premium though. This is why we should just ban loot boxes already.The Iron Crown Collection Event runs until August 27. After that, you’ll have to get used to socializing again. For more on Apex Legends see if you qualify for its first big upcoming tournament and learn how the powers at be are targeting Apex Legends and other violent video games without tackling the America’s true gun control issue. Stay on target Walmart, ESPN Target Video Game Guns Following Actual Gun Tragedy‘Apex Legends’ Invitational Tournament Kicks Off This September last_img read more

Need for Speed Heat Has Vice City Vibes

first_img Sorry, You Can’t Date Keanu Reeves in ‘Cyberpunk 2077”Star Wars Pinball’ Has Your Favorite Brand in Ball Form Stay on target 2017’s Need for Speed Payback was an off brand Fast and Furious movie taking place in an off brand Las Vegas. Need for Speed Heat seems to be going down the same road, only now it takes place in an off brand Miami, the fictional Palm City. Between the tropical setting and very aesthetic colors in the logo, we thought this might be a 1980s cocaine adventure like Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. But the trailer definitely takes place in contemporary car culture.Gameplay details are scarce. The trailer is selling a vibe more than anything else. But we do know that day/night cycle determines the racing events you can take part in, with things getting extra illegal after dark. You can still customize your cars, possibly more than ever before. And it continues the great Need for Speed traditions of making crooked cops the bad guys you need to outrace to free the streets.Need for Speed Heat launches November 8 on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. For more on racing games here are our reviews of Dangerous Driving and Team Sonic Racing.center_img Burnout had to die for Need to Speed to live as EA’s one true action-packed open-world racing game franchise (and Aaron Paul movie). But while the first couple of Criterion takes on the series were pretty great, Need for Speed has only slowed down for pretty much this entire generation of consoles. It cooled, as it were.Can things turn around? Check out this first trailer for the next game: Need for Speed Heat.last_img read more