Saturday, February 28, 2015

Let's Do The News! (February 28, 2015)

Welcome back. Here is your current sitrep:

- The Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov was killed near the Kremlin, a day before the mass protest against the Russian government. The death of the 55-year-old Russian politician who opposed Putin sparked anger among the opposition and called his death an assassination. Nemtsov was working on the report that can expose Russia's involvement with the rebels that controlled eastern Ukraine last year.

- US lawmakers averted the imminent shutdown of Homeland Security as Congress passed a one-week funding extension just hours before the midnight deadline.

- Onto the Greek debt crisis, Greek PM Alexis Tsipras told that their bailout measures are well and truly over and he will revise the nation's austerity measures during Friday's Cabinet meeting. The Greece and the EU have agreed on a 4-month extension of bailout measures for the country and the Greek premier said that the extension allows Greece to negotiate with the EU on reducing its debt without problems.

- The International Atomic Energy Agency or IAEA told that Japan needs to step up against terrorism at nuclear facilities in Japan. It was told during their 2 week stay in Japan  for some evaluation.

- The last of the fuselage from the Air Asia QZ8501 crash site, which killed 162 people on board, in the Java Sea has been obtained, as told by officials.

- Legendary actor Leonard Nimoy, famed for being Mr. Spock from the Star Trek TV show, passed away at the age of 83.

- Effective now on the weekends, the Metro Rail Transit's operating times are now shorter due to scheduled maintenances.


Bubble Gang - February 27, 2015

On the February 27, 2015 episode of Bubble Gang...

- More lait-lait from Lala Ytera!

- "Katapusan mo na!" gags

- More quotes from Tata Lino!

  • Ang Facebook ay lugar para magkilala. Hindi para maggulo, hindi para magdrama.
  • Ang masamang asal, dapat ay iiwasan at huwag mo itambak sa iyong katawan. Ito pakinggan, ito tandaan, walang nagmamahal sa tambak na basura.
  • Hindi totoo ang forever sa mga taong bitter.
  • Nagiba na ang panahon at ito'y hindi maiiwasan. Ang gadgets pagingatan pero ang puso'y paglalaruan.
- Antonietta still has some teleserye loopholes to slap at...

- You'll never get away from video calls!

- Istambay, Istambay Sa Looban, May Bago Tayong Pagkukwentuhan, Lalaking Laging Api-Apihan, Buhay Niya Laging Merong...BUGBUGAN?!

- Teenage boys mocking at an old man...

- One of Don Cantoni's associates is seeking help to him.

- He's not happy about this intelligent dog but someone agrees...

- The world's saddest superhero is here! Meet SOAPERMAN!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Let's Do The News! (February 27, 2015)

Welcome back. Here is your current sitrep:

- The widow of the man killed by a masked Islamic State militant known as "Jihadi John" says she want him captured alive. Jihadi John, as seen on the clips of Western hostages beheadings, was identified as Mohammed Emwazi, a Kuwaiti-born Brit from western London. He killed British aid worker David Haines and his wife, Dragana, want that militant captured alive while his daughter wants that militant dead.

- Meanwhile, a video from the Islamic State showed up and this video showcases militants destroying artifacts from ancient Mesopotamian civilization in places believed to be northern Iraq. The UNESCO's Iraq office told that they're analyzing the latest IS video while Western media told that the vandalism done by IS is located in Mosul, which is under IS control last summer.

- After riots occurred on the Greek capital city Athens, it is up to the German parliament to vote on the bailout plan to resolve the Greek debt crisis. They're debating a plan to extend the nation's financial aid by another four months and this extension needs to be ratified by the Eurozone members.

- Meanwhile in South Africa, a baby that was stolen from her sleeping mother's arms shortly after birth 17 years ago has been found coincidentally by the family.

- 32 people reportedly killed in the latest batch of terrorist attacks in Nigeria, which is believed to be the work of the Islamic militant group Boko Haram.

- The second-generation Audi R8 has been unveiled and it's now labeled as the most powerful Audi ever made, with the range-topping V10 Plus model's 5.2L V10 engine developing 602HP.

2016 Audi R8

- A few moments ago, producer Adi Shankar and director Joseph Kahn created this web movie showcasing a dystopian take on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers called POWER/RANGERS and over 8 million netizens watched it. Sadly, some bad news. The video in question was already removed from YouTube due to a copyright claim from Saban Brands. In Shankar's statement, it was considered to be an outright infringement on freedom of expression and individualism and the reason why they made this "bootleg" clip is a tribute to their childhood TV heroes and only a parody of some sorts.

- Little did you know that the Philippines were also responsible for rescuing Jewish people during the World War II holocaust? Yes, this fact can be found in any history books and X Factor Israel winner Rose Fostanes was surprised by this fact. Yesterday, she performed at the Music Museum for the Philippines Friendship Concert.

- WHAT'S THIS? There was a picture of a dress went viral and it sparked confusion whether if this dress is "black and blue" or "white and gold". Netizens have been debating this pic for days, especially celebs, and the truth comes clear that this dress is of course "black and blue" due to lighting and shadows from the photography.


Mazda CX-3

2016 Mazda CX-3

As Mazda's SKYACTIV revolution continues by providing exciting products that combine fuel efficiency and enjoyable performance at the same time, with the exception of Mazda's Axela Hybrid which feels like not a Mazda at all due to its hybrid powertrain and CVT nonsense, looks like the whole family's keep expanding with their newborn crossover, the CX-3.

Ah yes, another compact crossover in the stable but for this newcomer, the CX-3 is Mazda's ace-in-the-hole because of its performance and efficiency that stands out from the rest like all Mazda SKYACTIV cars do and if this car picks a fight against Europe, looks like this will have a fighting chance.

2016 Mazda CX-3

The CX-3 looks more of a Demio with some added ground clearance in and by the looks of it, the CX-3 looks very similar to the latest Demio especially when it inherits the signature Kodo -Soul in Motion- design philosophy. Although it's not half bad to look at for a Mazda, there are some loopholes on the exterior design and I believe that it's the side view that looks like a discarded mess. But it doesn't even matter to those who are trying to own one for daily use.

2016 Mazda CX-3 interior

2016 Mazda CX-3 interior

Yes, it's all typical Mazda interior and it's been made to be more driver-focused thanks to its new Human Machine Interface, allowing them to concentrate on their driving while dealing with chunks of info around them. There's also this new Mazda Connect where you can stream internet radio, access navigation, and so much more, which is nice. The seating position is not half bad and although it looks small, its roominess is pretty decent. What's more boggling is the rear seats that are positioned higher than the first row so they can get a clear view of the road ahead.

The boot space isn't so bad and with the capacity of 350 liters with all seats present, you can fit most of your grocery shopping in it, which is nice and best of all, the rear seats can be folded down for more space.

2016 Mazda CX-3

The only engine available for the CX-3 is the revolutionary SKYACTIV-D 1.5L engine and the reason why it's available in diesel only is because of its Demio cousin due to its success with the diesel variant. For this new crossover, this SKYACTIV-D 1.5L engine is much more different than the Demio because of its world's first "Natural Sound Smoother" which suppresses the diesel knock sound while on the standstill or slow acceleration, for a much refined feel unlike any other clean diesels known to mankind. This engine produces 105PS of power and 270Nm of torque. It can be mated with either a 6-speed SKYACTIV-DRIVE automatic (with 23.2km/L fuel economy) or a more enjoyable 6-speed SKYACTIV-MT gearbox (with 25.0km/L fuel economy).

Thanks to its cleverly unique SKYACTIV-CHASSIS, the CX-3 feels more enjoyable to drive without the drama included and for 4WD models, it comes with Mazda's brand new i-ACTIV AWD system which adapts control of the driving force distribution between the front and rear wheels. It's kinda similar to the ALLGRIP from the Suzuki SX4 S-Cross in so many ways and this clever feature adapts through any kind of road situations, be it dry, wet, frozen, or dirty.

No CX-3 will be complete without Mazda's i-ACTIVSENSE suite of safety systems such as Smart Brake Support, Mazda Radar Cruise Control, Smart City Brake Support, Hi-Beam Control System, Lane Departure Warning System, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, and Blind Spot Monitoring.

The new CX-3 starts at 2,376,000 Japanese Yen, which is over 300,000 more than the recently launched Suzuki SX4 S-Cross but this is more affordable to own than the Peugeot 2008 or the Renault Captur.

So, what to like about the new CX-3? It's performance, it's value for money, its quality, and overall, its capability as an all-rounder. What's not to like is the stale interior that we can expect on future Mazdas and the idea of offering it as a diesel-only car. Nevertheless, clean diesel is Mazda's way forward because this powertrain championed the Japanese carmaker and so does the CX-3.

Available Colors: Ceramic Metallic, Soul Red Premium Metallic, Crystal White Pearl Mica, Jet Black Mica, Meteor Grey Mica, Deep Crystal Blue Mica, Titanium Flash Mica, and Dynamic Blue Mica.

Photo: Mazda Motor Corporation

FCC approves new net neutrality proposals

Photo: Media Action Grassroots Network

"The Internet is too important to allow broadband providers to make the rules". Those are the words said by FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler as the historic vote on Thursday to implement new net neutrality measures to treat all legal content of the internet equally by internet service providers. He says that with new measures for net neutrality, the FCC will ensure that the internet will be fast, fair, and open for almost everyone.

What does this mean, ladies and gentlemen? The internet is once again saved...for now. Even though millions of people asked the FCC to keep the internet safe from major cable companies charging them for more, it kinda feels like that our fight for the internet's future isn't out of the woods yet.

But still, the hearts of millions of netizens can rest easily tonight because the internet is once again a safe haven for everyone who love to express their thoughts no matter how good or bad it is.


Thursday, February 26, 2015

Let's Do The News! (February 26, 2015)

Welcome back. Here is your current sitrep:

- The row between the Obama administration and Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu deepens as he accuses the US and others of giving up on trying to stop Iran obtaining nuclear weapons. Republicans invited the Israeli leader to address the Congress next week, making Democrats furious.

- The FBI arrested three foreigners living in Brooklyn, New York, who they are believed that they are joining the Islamic State. According to them, two of them had threatened to kill police officers and FBI agents in the US if they were unable to travel to Syria. They were charged with conspiracy to provide material support to militants.

- Russian leader Vladimir Putin warns Ukraine about suspending gas supplies to its easter regions controlled by pro-Russian rebels.

- Top officials from the USA and China have confirmed their cooperation against the nuclear programs of North Korea. They believed that the Korean Peninsula will not succeed in their pursuit of nuclear weapons and economic development.

- The Australian division of Lockheed Martin secured a contract to supply the Royal Australian Air Force with a C-130J Hercules virtual maintenance trainer and multifunction training aid to boost training at the RAAF Base Richmond, near Sydney.

- To celebrate the upcoming Furious 7, Universal Studios collaborate with Turn 10 Studios, developers of the famed Forza franchise, to deliver a brand new Fast & Furious expansion on Forza Horizon 2. Available on both XBOX One and XBOX 360 consoles this 27th of March for free until 10th of April ($10 after deadline), players can take on Fast and Furious challenges inspired from the hit racing action thriller franchise.

- The McLaren 675LT has been unveiled and this is the ultimate in McLaren's Super Series lineup, where the 650S is at. The 3.8L V8 twin-turbo has been enhanced to 675PS of power output and thanks to its new aerodynamics, not to mention the signature long tail at the rear, 0-62mph in 2.9 seconds and top speed of 205mph, which is 2mph slower than the less-powerful 650S but this is a serious track weapon for a road-legal car.

2016 McLaren 675LT

- Jensen returns with their upcoming GT model that will served as the revival of Britain's legendary sportscar maker since its 2002 demise. It will be made by the same people behind the unofficial, Corvette-powered Interceptor as seen in one episode of Top Gear a few years ago. Spearheaded by ex-Aston Martin boss Tim Hearley, the new Jensen's future plans include another model due next year.

- There was a short web movie made by director Joseph Khan and it features a grim, sadistic look to one of our childhood heroes on TV, the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Called POWER/RANGERS, this short clip features Battlestar Galactica's Katee Sackhoff as the Pink Ranger and Dawson Creek's James Van Der Beek as the Red Ranger. It was uploaded by one of the producers, Adi Shankar, on his YouTube channel and according to the producer himself, the reason why they want to bootleg the Power Rangers is the realization that high school teens have been weaponized to fight intergalactic threats and such prolonged experience had turned them into dystopic adults.

Saban Brands, the owners of the Rangers franchise, warned Joseph Khan to take that web movie off the interwebs but as of now, over 8.5 million viewers have seen this. Watch it while you still can if you dare.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Let's Do The News! (February 25, 2015)

Welcome back. Here is your current sitrep:

- Amnesty International urged five UNSC members to give up their power of veto in genocide votes. According to their annual report, the global response to an array of catastrophes in 2014 have been shameful and developing countries were guilty of taking an abhorrent stance by not sheltering more refugees. They expect a much grim outlook for this year and the rights group said world leaders need to act fast to confront the changing nature of armed conflict.

- Eddie Ray Routh was convicted guilty for the murder of American Sniper Chris Kyle and sentenced to life imprisonment without parole, although prosecutors had not sought the death penalty. Chris Kyle, known for his record-high sniper kills during his US military service, was shot and killed alongside his mate Chad Littlefield at a certain shooting range south-west of Fort Worth, Texas.

- According to a certain human rights group, Islamic State militants have kidnapped about 90 Assyrian Christians from villages in Syria. Those kidnappings came after Syrian Kurdish militia fighters launched new offensives on Sunday to reclaim territories held by militants in Hasaka.

- US President Barack Obama vetoed a bill to approve construction of part of an oil pipeline linking Canada and the Gulf Coast. This is the first veto since Republicans took over the House and the Senate after last year's midterm elections. Obama exercised his veto three times during his 6-year tenure as the leader of the USA.

- Today marks the 29th anniversary of the Edsa People Power Revolution and here's the full text of President Benigno Aquino III's speech during the celebration which can be viewed by clicking here.

- The Aston Martin Vulcan has been unveiled and this track-only racecar is powered by a 7.0L V12 engine developing over 800bhp of power output. It's set for its Geneva premiere next month.

Aston Martin Vulcan

- Beginning 23rd of March, Google's Blogger won't let users to publicly share images and video that are sexually explicit or show graphic nudity. They will still allow nudity if the content is for artistic, educational, documentary, or scientific purposes.

- The Volkswagen Touran minivan has now gained its full-model change and this new-generation Golf-based minivan is set for its Geneva debut next month.

2016 Volkswagen Touran

- NOW AVAILABLE: The 10th DLC Catalog for the PS3-exclusive The iDOLM@STER ONE FOR ALL game! For this catalog, Rin Shibuya from Cinderella Girls will be making a special guest appearance! Also, two new outfits have been added such as the Refrain Romance and Night On Stage, as well as the new song edeN.



Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Let's Do The News! (February 24, 2015)

Welcome back. Here is your current sitrep:

- Russian leader Vladimir Putin said that the war with Ukraine is "unlikely" during an interview for Russian television. He also stressed his support for the current Minsk ceasefire agreement as the best way to normalize the situation in the eastern Ukraine.

- The Japanese government aims to legally expand the use of weapons by the Self Defense Forces personnel that provide logistic support to foreign troops in action linked to the nation's security.

- Japan and China engaged in a heated argument in an open debate at the UNSC reform, which was organized on Monday to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II and the establishment of the United Nations. Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi said there are historical facts regarding the world's fight against fascism while Japanese UN ambassador Motohide Yoshikawa responded that Japan has made serious efforts to contribute world peace and prosperity ever since this nation became part of the UN.

- Some Democrats and Republicans are opposing requests from US leader Barack Obama over enhanced powers to make trade deals and to deploy the military, forcing him and his allies to build centrist majorities in a Republican-controlled Congress whose ideological middle has nearly vanished.

- Senator Alan Peter Cayetano  and MILF chief negotiator Mohagner Iqbal are arguing during the Senate probe of the Mamasapano clash. Cayetano blamed Iqbal for tagging uploaders of the SAF shooting video as criminals. That video shows a gunman mercilessly killed one of the SAF members in the head twice.

- Due to system upgrades, releasing passports from the Department of Foreign Affairs to the Filipino travelers will take longer time than expected, according to reports.

- The very last Bugatti Veyron has been sold out and to be more precise, it was the 450th Grand Sport Vitesse model ordered by a Middle Eastern customer that is known to be the last of its kind. They even called it "La Finale" and this last Veyron ever made and sold will be displayed at next month's Geneva Motor Show.

La Finale
- Honda Motor Co., Ltd. named Takahiro Hachigo as the new CEO of the Japanese car company, replacing Takanobu Ito effectively.

- Aquaman from the DC Universe will spawn a movie version due Summer 2018.


Top Gear S22E05

Top Gear S22E05

It's the fifth episode of Top Gear Series 22 and on that episode, Richard Hammond's on the track to try out the latest version of the Chevrolet Corvette as well as the hardcore-ish Porsche Cayman GTS. When handed to The Stig, the Cayman GTS did it in 1:21.6 while the new Vette did it in 1:19.8.

Meanwhile and after moments of waiting, James May finally gets a hold of Ferrari's ultimate machine called the LaFerrari and he even get the chance to try one at Ferrari's Fiorano test track.

Singer Olly Murs is the Star In A Reasonably Priced Car and with the lap time of 1:44.6, he's now named the quickest celeb round the track.

And then, the episode ends with Jeremy and James investigating Peugeots and they even got the chance to drive one in a terrible but hilarious kind of way. Some crashing were involved in that bit but they did made a point about Peugeot, apparently.

Monday, February 23, 2015

2015 Academy Awards

At the 87th Annual Academy Awards, the movie Birdman was named as the best picture as well as having the film's director Alejandro G. Inarritu named best director, best original screenplay, and best cinematography.

Birdman is a film about a waning actor, played by Michael Keaton, who once played a superhero in a superhero flick, tries to start a Broadway play. It also stars Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone, and Naomi Watts.

Apart from Birdman winning big at the Oscars, Eddie Redmayne, who portrayed Stephen Hawking in the biopic The Theory of Everything, was named as Best Actor while Julianne Moore, also stared on this film, was named Best Actress.

Patricia Arquette was named Best Supporting Actress from her performance in the film that was made 12 years in the making, Boyhood.

J.K. Simmons was named Best Supporting Actor for his role as an abusive jazz instructor from the movie Whiplash, which scored three Oscar wins this year.

The Imitation Game was named as Best Adapted Screenplay courtesy of Graham Moore.

Disney's Big Hero 6 and an animated short Feast win Animated Oscars as well.


Let's Do The News! (February 23, 2015)

Welcome back. Here is your current sitrep:

- The Australian government is toughening up their citizenship laws in their all-out effort to combat rampant terrorist threats. It also states that citizenship for dual nationals involved in terrorism could be suspended or revoked. Australian PM Tony Abbott said that the terrorist threat is rising at home and abroad.

- The Greek government's preparing to present a list of reforms to lenders in order to secure the nation's bailout extension. Under the deal set last Friday, the list must be approved by global creditors to secure their four-month loan extension.

- Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko led a march in Kiev on Sunday as remembrance to those who fought and lost their lives during the Eastern Ukrainian unrest. He reiterated his intention to seek membership for his country in the EU while commemorating the first anniversary of the fall of the pro-Russian government.

- Residents of Japan's Yonaguni Island in Okinawa Prefecture have voted in the referendum on whether to host a Ground Self Defense Force observation unit. The majority of the votes are favored of the plan rather than opposing it. Part of the efforts to increase the southwestern island's defense, the government plans to base 150 units on Japan's westernmost island.

- Heavy artillery forces the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters to retreat from their Cotabato villages and the civilians displaced by the conflict could safely return to their homes now.

- Onto the Mamasapano investigation, Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr., the AFP chief General, asked for an executive session for the military's top leaders to uncover their actions on their failed Mamasapano raid that killed 44 of the Special Action Force units last January. This session would allow the leaders to talk freely.

- The Range Rover Evoque is in duty for four years since its 2011 release and now it's time for its minor change for the 2016 model year. It's set for its Geneva Motor Show debut next month.

2016 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque

- The second-generation Toyota Auris hatchback has been given a minor change and it's set for its Geneva Motor Show debut next month.

- F1 driver Fernando Alonso was hospitalized after crashing his McLaren-Honda F1 car during test runs in Barcelona.

- The first full-length trailer for the DCOM sequel, Teen Beach 2, is now streaming and this sequel to the 2013 DCOM premieres this summer on Disney Channel!


Sunday, February 22, 2015

"Mr. K" Katayama passed away

Yutaka Katayama

It is with regret that news about Yutaka "Mr. K" Katayama, known worldwide as the father of the Z-car, has passed away at the age of 105 due to his heart failure. It was confirmed by his son, Mitsuo.

"Mr. K" was born in 1909 in Shizuoka Prefecture and was hired by Nissan in 1935 as in charge of the PR management and later advertising. He was known to be the founding father of the Tokyo Auto Show when the first one, then-called the All-Japan Motor Show, started in 1954.

He was the one behind Nissan's US operations, established the Datsun brand in American soil, and the mastermind behind the iconic Datsun 240Z sports car (also known as the Fairlady Z S30). He was part of the Automotive Hall of Fame in both the US and Japan. Fairlady fans revered to "Mr. K" as a God and respected by many car enthusiasts.

Nissan once made a three-part documentary to celebrate Katayama-san's 105th birthday last year.

Despite his passing, his legacy lives on to the generation of Z cars past, present, and future.


Leopaul's Heaven and Hell: The Bleating Conundrum

Goat or Sheep?

2015 is the year of the sheep while some call it the year of the goat. Errr....what? Year of the goat or year of the sheep? I'm getting confused already because while some call it goat, some call it sheep, others got hurt themselves in confusion.

Sure, goats and sheeps are very different mammals but what made them similar is their bleating sounds. You know...baaahhhh! Baaaahhhhh! Baaaaahhhh!!! Okay enough the bah-bah sounds. Anyway, what made them similar is the way they behave. Some say, goats tend to be curious and independent while sheep tend to be more alone. Goats are browsers and they eat leaves, twigs, vines, and shrubs while sheeps are grazers and they like to eat short, tender grasses and clover.

Uh-oh... This is turning into a science lesson. Anyway, let's forget about this one above because what I'm talking about the confusion between "year of the goat" and "year of the sheep" on the Chinese zodiac. Heck, I wasn't the only ones who got confused over the sheep-goat debate because even the Chinese people are having a hard time distinguish the eighth animal in their zodiac. You see, when they named it "yang" in their Chinese zodiac, that Mandarin word refers to some hoofed animal that eats grass and bleats but doesn't mention if its a goat or a sheep. 

Heck, they even added Ram to the mix and no, not the Ram trucks that Chrysler made, nor is the battering ram used by riot policemen, it's the animal kind, but who cares? Ram, goat, sheep, they're all on a totally different leagues and there's no way they can share the eighth spot of the zodiac.

If the Chinese zodiac is interpreted by Pokemon, it could be either the year of Mareep or Gogoat because some would call it year of the sheep, others call it year of the goat. Well, since goats have more population than sheep, scenics would go for the goat while other scenics would go for the sheep. Or to put it in other terms, since Mareep's electric (yes, really), it's not very effective against Gogoat (because it's Grass type), it should be Gogoat's time to shine, not Mareep, but since the popularity is on Mareep's, it feels like Mareep's won the battle. Man, I'm starting to hurt myself in confusion but I still believe it's the goat's, not the sheeps, who claim the eighth spot of the zodiac. Man, I swear...

According to one theory, the year 2015 will be an important year for those who are born from the year of the goat, including me because I was born in 1991, which is one of the years marked as "year of the goat" according to the zodiac. Goats, according to the zodiac, are gentle, have very delicate thoughts, and prefer to be in groups. If that was the case, then, why I possess none of these traits? I am not gentle, I don't have delicate thoughts, and I prefer to be alone. Maybe those traits I had kinda felt like I'm not one of the goats but I still wanna try if I have the time to do it.

Whether if it's the year of the goat or the year of the sheep, the debate is still going on but no matter which side you're on, let's make this year count for us because for us who are born on the year of the goat (or sheep), it's our time to shine and let our presence be known to the world.

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