‘Applause’ by Lady Gaga is my new jam.
‘Applause’ by Lady Gaga is my new jam.
10 Reasons I Love my BlackBerry
I don’t usually go fanboy about my tech toys, but I get enough people asking me, “Why’d you get a BlackBerry, of all things?” that I thought I’d explain it in a post…
1) The Hub means I don’t have to open every app for messaging, social, e-mail or SMS texts - everything is in one place.
2) I can run Android apps without having to give up my privacy to Google.
3) It has a keyboard.
4) I can upgrade the storage to 64GB by just getting a larger SD card. A 64GB iPhone is a lot more expensive than the smaller models, and I don’t know of any Android phones that let you increase the storage that high.
5) I have a BlackBerry Playbook as well, so I can go online with my tablet, at 4G speed, for FREE.
6) The audio on phone calls - you know, the reason you have a phone - is always crystal clear.
7) Unlike the iPhone, it uses Flash.
8) Unlike Android, BlackBerry doesn’t collect data on me to sell me things.
9)In fact, security on BlackBerry is tighter than anything available. I can even encrypt the data on it so no one can ever see what’s on here without the password.
10) This screen just does not scratch! I’ve kept it in my pocket with my keys, and I’ve dropped it. Still not a mark on the glass.
Wow - this self assessment test question has me backed into a corner. Why wouldn’t I feel strongly about both options here?
An open bag of office popcorn - tasty looking, until you realize how many people’s unwashed hands have already gone digging away in it.
A night of Xavier Cugat on vynal, egg nog, and decorating the tree.
This year’s color combination: Black on white. (The Mickey ears was the only tree top we could find for this that worked.)
View from the top of the pant-shittingly tall Empire State Building
The media is advising all in Southern England to commence full scale panic due to the sub hurricane force winds forecast for tonight.
Expect garden chairs to be slightly moved, leaves blown from trees, lawn furniture to be upturned - stock up on milk, loot the stores, sharpen those axes and get ready to resort to cannibalism.
Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel has said it is “really not on” for friends to spy on each other, referring to alleged US snooping on her phone calls.
On arrival at an EU summit in Brussels Mrs Merkel said “we need trust between allies and partners, and such trust needs to be restored”.
She said she had given that message to US President Barack Obama when they spoke on Wednesday.
Other EU leaders also voiced concern about the scale of US surveillance.
The spying row threatens to overshadow EU talks on economic growth and migration to the EU. Mrs Merkel has demanded a “complete explanation” of the claims, which came out in the German media.
She grew up in former communist East Germany, where secret police surveillance was pervasive.
Her delegation in Brussels confirmed she had met briefly to discuss the issue with France’s President Francois Hollande, who has expressed alarm at reports that millions of French calls have been monitored by the US.
There is concern that the furor could jeopardize EU-US talks on reaching a major free trade deal. The head of Germany’s Social Democrats (SPD), Sigmar Gabriel, said such a deal was hard to imagine if the US had infringed citizens’ privacy. The SPD is in coalition talks with Chancellor Merkel.
In a separate development, Italy’s weekly L’Espresso reported that the US and UK had been spying on Italian internet and phone traffic.
The revelations were sourced to US whistleblower Edward Snowden. It is alleged that the US National Security Agency (NSA) and UK spy centre GCHQ eavesdropped on three undersea cables with terminals in Italy.
Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta described the allegations as “inconceivable and unacceptable” and said he wanted to get to the truth of them.
Meanwhile, the Guardian newspaper reported that the NSA had monitored the phones of 35 world leaders after being given their numbers by another US government official. Again Edward Snowden was the source of the report.
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said the alleged spying on Mrs Merkel’s mobile phone calls was “serious” and added: “I will support her (Merkel) completely in her complaint and say that this is not acceptable - I think we need all the facts on the table first.”
Finland’s Prime Minister Jyrki Katainen echoed him, saying: “We have to get clarification of what has happened and we also need a guarantee that this will never happen again, if it has happened.”
Germany summoned the US ambassador in Berlin over the alleged spying.
Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said about his meeting with US envoy John Emerson that he had demanded straight answers from Washington, warning that their friendship is at stake.
Mrs Merkel discussed the issue with President Obama on Wednesday. He told her the US was not monitoring her calls and would not in future, the White House said.
However, it left open the question of whether calls had been listened to in the past.
Former US secretary of state Madeleine Albright said the spying allegations were “not a surprise to people - countries spy on each other”, and added that France had spied on her when she was in government.
Cutting red tape
The formal agenda for the summit focuses on efforts to consolidate Europe’s fragile economic recovery and to create a single market in digital services.
British Prime Minister David Cameron will also call on the EU to reduce regulations for business.
But France’s President Hollande pressed for the spying issue to be put on the agenda.
The veteran French EU Commissioner Michel Barnier told the BBC that “enough is enough”, and confidence in the US had been shaken.
Mr Barnier, the commissioner for internal market and services, said Europe must not be naive but develop its own strategic digital tools, such as a “European data cloud” independent of American oversight.
The digital economy is on the official summit agenda for Thursday evening.
One of the key initiatives of the European Commission is its Digital Agenda for Europe, which it says “aims to reboot Europe’s economy and help Europe’s citizens and businesses to get the most out of digital technologies”.
Council officials say investment in the digital economy is vital to boost growth, which is creeping back to the European economy. They want to address market fragmentation and a perceived shortage of IT skills.
Mr Cameron is likely to use the economic discussion to raise what Britain sees as a proliferation of red tape.
He said last week: “All too often EU rules are a handicap for firms,” and that small business owners “are forced to spend too much time complying with pointless, burdensome and costly regulations”.
The European Commission - which makes the rules - has recognised that it may have gone too far in some places.
President Jose Manuel Barroso says he wants the EU to be “big on big things and smaller on smaller things”.
He says the Commission has cut more than 5,000 legal acts in the past five years and wants to do more.
On Friday the leaders will discuss relations with central European countries, ahead of a November summit in Lithuania where new agreements will be signed.
Migration will also be discussed, following the loss of hundreds of lives among migrants trying to reach Europe from Africa and the Middle East.
Dubai on Flickr.
Amazing shot of the Dubai skyline on a cloudly morning.