Saturday, July 22, 2017

Let's Do The News! (July 22, 2017)

- A group of anti-martial law protesters interrupted the Congress' session at the Batasang Pambansa over alleged human rights violation in Mindanao. About 15 members from the League of Filipino Students and National Union of Students of the Philippines were arrested after releasing banners protesting against Martial Law in Mindanao during a meeting between Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana and Act Partylist Rep. Cong. Antonio Tinio.

- President Rodrigo Duterte says he will never visit the United States, which he called a "lousy" country following remarks by Massachusetts Congressman James McGovern, who told a hearing of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission that he would protest against such a visit if U.S. President Donald Trump followed through on an invitation to the firebrand Philippine leader.

- The low pressure area has entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility as Tropical Depression Fabian. It was last spotted 110 km south of southwest of Basco, Batanes.

- White House press secretary Sean Spicer announced that he will step down from his position after six months. Following his resignation, US President Donald Trump named Anthony Scaramucci, his longtime supporter and Wall Street financier, as the White House communications director - an appointment Spicer vehemently opposed. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Spicer's deputy, will take over as White House press secretary amid a chaotic West Wing shakeup of communication and legal staff.

- Fresh from Sand Diego Comic Con, here's what you can expect in the upcoming Nickelodeon TV special, Hey Arnold: The Jungle Movie.


- Disney announced during the SDCC that the special Milo Murphy's Law episode pays tribute to Phineas and Ferb with a special crossover coming this 2018.

-  There was once a level that didn't make the cut in the original Crash Bandicoot for being too difficult. It's called Stormy Ascent and you can now play the never-before released level in the Crash Bandicoot N-Sane Trilogy on the PS4 as a DLC! Are you prepared for the worst?


Forza Horizon 3: Prowling

Forza Horizon 3 isn't more than just sampling the best cars of your choosing, it's about living with the cars from the times you emerged with and if you were kids of the late 90's, you are familiar with America's modern take of the hot rod, the Prowler.

This is Plymouth's preparation for the 21st century of automobile and while it draws inspiration from past hotrods, it features a bespoke body featuring an aluminum space frame because none of their existing materials from their existing lineup would work in the creation of this unique but short-lived roadster. The Prowler I had is an improved version of its 3.5L V6 engine producing 253HP of power while mated to a dismal 4-speed automatic gearbox that doesn't match the performance of European sportscars it faces.

Despite being Plymouth's flagship sports car, the Plymouth brand was discontinued from 2001 and it was sold as a Chrysler Prowler thereafter until the Prowler's production discontinued a year after, with a final limited edition model of 300 cars painted in special Candy Deep Red body color.

The Prowler may be a disaster for Chrysler despite having sealed in a mausoleum as a time capsule somewhere for marketing reasons and the driving feel doesn't match the dynamics of its European opposition but for the sake of nostalgia, there are limitless possibilities of reminiscing the good old days of your youth while driving the Prowler. It may not be enough to create some audience impact when you drive it but when it comes to creativity and originality, you got to hand it over to the guys behind the Prowler and despite being short-lived and being the rarest cars in American roads, it's still a beauty to behold.

While I'm still on my break after all the Horizon Australia glitz and glamour I gave for the cars I've encountered throughout this epic journey, I took the unsung American hero to a night stroll with the kids on the block, giving me the ideal moment to understand how a Prowler shows its first impression.

It may not be a first impression as I hoped for but like a Pink Floyd gig, the Prowler is all about wowing the crowd with its originality that sets the cars apart and it doesn't matter if this car wasn't made to tackle against Europe's finest because even if it's no good, the Prowler still wows the hearts of drivers with its unique impression that has the wink and smile of Charles Bronson on a diner break.

Bubble Gang - July 21, 2017 #BGJokeZerious

In the July 21, 2017 episode of Bubble Gang...

- Kahilingan gags

- An interview with a former comedian

- Force of habit

- Girls talking about painful experiences

- Istambay, Istambay Sa Looban, Ano Pa Ang Inyong Aasahan, Kundi Ang Kwentong Merong Kantahan, Ang Kanta May Kasamang...KWENTUHAN?!

- Today's Patikim Ni Kim recipe is Tahong

- Today's Balitang Ina welcomes Batang Ina

- Accident-prone insurance agents in the meeting

- Basa-basa pik

Friday, July 21, 2017

Layton's Mystery Journey: Katrielle and the Millionaires' Conspiracy

It's been ten years has passed since the blokes behind hit games like Yo-Kai Watch and Inazuma Eleven introduced us the mystery-solving adventures of Professor Layton and now, the legacy of Layton lives on in the eyes of his daughter named Katrielle Layton, starring in her maiden adventure in the heart of modern-day London in search for her father's whereabouts while solving cases that will lead her to The Millionaires' Conspiracy.

Layton's Mystery Journey:
Katrielle and the Millionaires' Conspiracy

Yes, the mystery-solving Layton franchise is now on its 10th anniversary since its 2007 release in the Nintendo DS and while this is more than just a birthday present to the much-loved mystery-solving franchise, the introduction of Katrielle Layton, the daughter of Professor Hershel Layton, needs no introduction aside from being the new protagonist of this franchise that will pick up where her father left off; that involves solving cases. Featuring a star-studded cast that lend their voices to new characters as well as the theme song by Kana Nishino, this is Layton at its finest.

From her talking dog pal, an unrequited suitor, and new and returning cast of characters waiting in the sidelines, every mystery is a moment for Kat and evoking the spirit of the Layton franchise, players will immerse themselves through series of puzzling challenges that will test their intelligence while venturing through the city of London in search for clues that will lead her to the truth she's been longing for. As you progress further, you can personalize Kat's outfits as well as her own room, giving you individuality to play Layton's Mystery Journey your way.

If you are a longtime fan of the Layton franchise, you should give this new installment a try. Even though the main character is now a female, the Layton bloodline lives on as with every puzzle, every challenge, and every clue you encounter, needless to say that this should be the most exquisite Layton game to date and what a way to celebrate 10 years of the Layton franchise with the arrival of Professor Layton's daughter, Katrielle, and her maiden voyage as a budding detective who solves mysteries in style.

Props to Level 5 for this new installment and with Katrielle Layton, looks like the immediate future of the franchise is very bright indeed and very stylish. This game is now available on the Nintendo 3DS or via download on the App Store and Google Play.

Let's Do The News! (July 20, 2017)

- 78 individuals were arrested by the police during the anti-criminality operation in Quiapo, Manila yesterday. Manila Police District Director Chief Supt. Joel Coronel said that 21 of the arrested are facing charges related to illegal drugs.

- Government troops killed one of the members of the New People's Army behind the ambush against the Presidential Security group in Arakan, North Cotabato.

- The Minneapolis police chief said the fatal shooting of an unarmed Australian woman by a junior police officer violated department training and procedures, and that the victim “didn’t have to die.” The death of Justine Damond from a single gunshot wound to the abdomen fired through an open window of a police patrol car, has outraged her relatives and the Australian public. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull called it "shocking" and "inexplicable".

- Despite their failed attempts to get their GOP healthcare bill through the Senate, Republicans are desperate to revive their collapsed bill before they go back home to their districts in August. Majority Leader McConnell promised a repeal-only vote early next week without a replacement in sight. And Donald Trump just had 49 of the 52 Republican senators over the White House on Wednesday to convince them to go for it one last time. The vote had already been delayed because of John McCain's absence, who had an operation to remove a blood clot on Friday.

- Most Venezuelan streets were barricaded and deserted for a strike called by foes of President Nicolas Maduro to demand elections and the scrapping of plans for a new congress they fear would consolidate dictatorship in the OPEC country.

- Good news to hardcore PokeMon GO players everywhere; the long awaited Legendary Pokemon are arriving soon and in the upcoming PokeMon GO Fest in Grant Park, Chicago, if trainers globally manage to get enough PokeMon during the PokeMon GO Fest Challenge Windows, the first Legendary Pokemon will be out in Grant Park and if they succeed in defeating one, it will appear in Raid Battles globally on July 23rd (July 24th Tokyo time).

- Lotus unveiled their most powerful car yet, the Evora GT430 and apart from some aerodynamic upgrades to the Evora, the 3.5L supercharged V6 has been recalibrated to release 430HP of power output and 325lb-ft of torque, while mated to a 6-speed gearbox, resulting to a 0-60mph time of 3.7 seconds and 190mph of top speed.

- The 11th addition to Phat!'s THE IDOLM@STER anime DVD/Blu-ray cover figure lineup, Chihaya Kisaragi, has been unveiled. This figure's available to order starting at 11,000 Yen plus tax and delivery and arrives this March.

- Check out what's in store for the upcoming Nickelodeon TV special, Rocko's Modern Life: Static Cling, as seen in the recent San Diego Comic Con trailer.

- Linkin Park's vocalist, Chester Bennington, was found dead in his Los Angeles home on Thursday. He was 41 years old. According to authorities, Chester hanged himself to death. Mike Shinoda, one of Linkin Park's members, expressed sympathy over Bennington's death.


Kia Sorento (UM) - 2018 Minor Change

It's been three years since the third-generation Kia Sorento went on sale and the South Korean carmaker launched a minor change for the current-generation model. Needless to say about the recent minor change, Kia promises to be an even better Sorento than it was last time with the added tech and style it deserves from one of Kia's most well-respected SUVs in the lineup.

2018 Kia Sorento
2018 Kia Sorento

For the 2018 minor change, the Sorento has received full LED headlamps, new grille design, new front bumper design, new rear design, and pretty much it. On the inside, there are some changes occurred such as a newly designed heated steering wheel, available T-Link connectivity with smartphone compatibility heated/ventilated tan leather seats on range-topping models, wireless charging, powered tailgate, new electric extendable base on the front seats, and so much more.  Of course, even with new features, it still has a choice of either a five-seater or a seven-seater if you have kids.

2018 Kia Sorento interior
2018 Kia Sorento interior

Engine choices are the same as last time such as a 2.0 litre diesel (186 PS/402 Nm), 2.2 litre diesel (202 PS/441 Nm) and a 2.0 T-GDI petrol unit with 240 PS/353 Nm, but all are now mated to an 8-speed automatic gearbox and rack-driven electric power steering known as R-MDPS, a first for a Korean car, which results to a slightly improved dynamics compared to the pre-facelift model and thanks to health and safety, the 2018MY Sorento now comes a host of safety tech such as Lane Keeping Assist, Back Side Collision Warning, Front collision avoidance+, Smart Cruise Control, Driver Attention Warning, new Dynamic Bending Lights, and a brand new Around View Monitor. It's everything you need for a crossover fit enough to take the whole family on medical appointments, food trips, mall trips, and so much more that makes the facelifted Sorento worthy to satisfy every families' demands for a safe and enjoyable crossover for day-to-day use.

The 2018MY Sorento starts at 27,850,000 KRW (around $28,000) and comes with Kia's 3 year warranty. With new LED headlamps, R-MPDS, 8-speed automatic, and new features, rest assured that the facelifted model is trying to keep up with the high demand for safe and enjoyable crossovers like the one I know who used to have one.

Available Colors: Snow White Pearl, Silky Silver, Platinum Graphite, Aurora Black Pearl, Gravity Blue, and Rich Espresso.

Photo: Kia Motors

Splatoon 2

Nintendo's hit third-person ink-shooting game that splattered the globe is back and this time, even more inkier than before as Splatoon 2, the sequel to the hit 2015 game, has inked its way to the brand-new Nintendo Switch, featuring new ways to enjoy painting the town green or pink, whatever it takes to dominate new game modes you and your mates will love.

Splatoon 2

Fans from around the globe who played the original Splatoon were impressed in this new kind of third-person combat where it is inked or be inked by all means necessary and with the arrival of the new Nintendo Switch, it might be the ideal time to introduce our squid mates the long-awaited sequel to their favorite game and between you, me, and the next guy who keeps on blabbering about being excited for this, we can't hardly wait to dive into this new kind of ink warfare.

Like the original, Splatoon 2 is all about #SquadGoals because the classic Turf War we love still remains and the winning team is whoever inked the most to the battlefield. In Splatoon 2, there are new maps to master the art of Turf War by any means necessary in new and exciting game modes that will test you and your mates' inkling skills. Whether if you're taking on Splat Zones, Tower Control, or gunning for the Rainmaker to dominate the battlefield, every kind of Turf War is special in every single way and in the case of entering those super-cool and super-extreme Turf Wars called Splatfests, you have more ways to challenge yourself in Splatoon 2.

Of course, before you get yourself ready for the Turf War, you need to be familiarize on how this game works in an intense solo-player adventure, where you will infiltrate the dreaded Octo Canyon and defeat nefarious foes on your quest to save The Great Zapfish or better yet work your way through Octo Canyon's secrets to find a mysterious Squid girl named Callie. Where's Callie? Only you will find out the answer to this question.

When you had enough of those Turf War shenanigans but you want more fun for you and your mates, Splatoon 2 introduces Salmon Run, where two to four players must team up to collect Golden Eggs while fend off waves of Salmonids by any means necessary. The tougher the challenges, the better the rewards so feel free to reap the benefits after you and your pals done your dirtiest jobs ever experienced.

As a Switch game, you are free to play Splatoon 2 anywhere you want, whether at home, at work during noon breaks, or at someone else's house. You can even play with your mates either ad-hoc or infrastructure (given that you have to use its online features at no cost before Nintendo's paid service kicks in next year) so you can experience the full Splatoon experience. 

So, there you have it, with new and exciting ways to ink the competition, the sequel to the hit Splatoon game is more than just being a sequel to the highly successful game, it's a phenomenon that will leave a big colorful mark to the gaming world and whether if you're playing for fun or playing for real, there's so much ways and means to love Splatoon 2 on the new Nintendo Switch and that's best topping on a cake or an ice cream we can splat on our faces.

If you haven't got your Nintendo Switch, now's the right tine to join the fun with the Nintendo Switch Splatoon 2 set, now available for 35,960 Yen plus tax and add some fun with the new Nintendo Switch Pro Controller Splatoon 2 edition, two special Nintendo Switch Carrying Cases themed after this game, and three new amiibo figures that will be proven useful on your Splatoon 2 experience.

Let the splatfest begin!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Let's Do The News! (July 20, 2017)


- The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board accused operators of Grab and Uber of being "ningas kugon" regarding the agency's requirements for their operations. The agency's being showered with complaints due to their crackdown of Grab and Uber vehicles without franchise and provisional authority.

- The Armed Forces of the Philippines is wary on the real reason amid the New People's Army move to boost their attack against the government troops. The military wonders why the rebels continue to attack the government amid the on-going Marawi Siege in Marawi City, Lanao Del Sur.  They should have remained silent or show support to the government.

- The US House of Representative's Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission will be investigating alleged human rights violations related to President Duterte's bloody campaign against drugs.

- Meanwhile, President Duterte named 20 new government officials, including a former congressman, to key posts in his administration. He also appointed a comedian named "Bogart the Explorer" as a member of the MTRCB.

- According to a recent NBC/WSJ poll, about 12% of people from key Trump counties support the GOP healthcare efforts.

- Arizona Republican Senator John McCain has been diagnosed with a brain tumor.

- Axeheads and grinding stones found in a cave from Australia's Northern Territory suggest humans arrived on the continent about 65,000 years ago, or 18,000 years earlier than previously thought, according to research published on Thursday.

- Turkish PM Binali Yildirim warned Cyprus its moves to explore for energy around the eastern Mediterranean were “untimely and dangerous”, adding that Ankara would continue to protect the rights and interests of Turkish Cypriots.

- Opel/Vauxhall's new Insignia has gained a new sporty GSi variant with a 2.0L turbo engine producing 260HP of power and Torque Vectoring 4WD.

- Also, the new Buick Regal Sportback gained a new GS variant with a more powerful 3.6L V6 and AWD with active twin clutch.

- The next-generation Nissan LEAF will introduce a brand new e-Pedal which combines the use of an accelerator pedal and a brake pedal, all in one special pedal made for the new model. Users can even turn it on or off as well.


Opel/Vauxhall Insignia B Grand Sport and Sports Tourer

The Insignia, a favorite among company car drivers and fleet decision makers across Europe, is now on its second generation and it's even more promising than ever thanks to its new look, new interior, new tech, new dynamics, and new engine choices, setting the new gold standard for midsize cars in this ever-changing landscape. So, what's new about the Insignia B range?

2018 Opel Insignia
2018 Vauxhall Insignia
2018 Vauxhall Insignia

The all-new Opel/Vauxhall Insignia range sets the new standards in the executive midsize car market by promising new and exciting features way unheard for most midsize saloons in the market and it promises world-class quality ready for the world's toughest challenges, whatever lay ahead. There are now two styles to choose from such as the Grand Sport fastback and the Sport Tourer and wherever you live, you can see one of these worldwide as either a Buick Regal or Holden Commodore, wait what? 

The new Insignia is the new Commodore in the Aussie market? Sadly, it is and because of Australia stopped making cars at the late quarter of this year, Australians will be getting the new Insignia as their new Holden NG Commodore next year and what does it mean? It's the end of Aussie muscle as we know it but let's not lament on the first-ever front-wheel drive Commodore for the Australian roads. We're talking about Insignia for the European people and in terms of design, there is a high possibility that some people may easily mistake it for a Mazda Atenza because by the looks of it, the new Insignia does look like an Atenza by all means necessary. Because the current Mazda Atenza is a good-looking midsize saloon to look at it, so is the new Insignia and mistaken identity aside, it's still very pleasant to look at one of these on the road and it's now easier to refuel because they have to ditch the old twist-off cap so drivers can refuel it quicker, easier, and without the spills.

2018 Opel Insignia interior

The inside looks rather similar to the outgoing model but because it now runs on a new platform that was used on today's Chevrolet Malibu, it's now surprisingly spacious than before so people at the back can get themselves accommodated and as for boot space, the trunk volume of 490 to 1,450 litres makes it enough to accommodate most of your grocery shopping stuff of the day as well as some stuff your grandma needs such as a walker or a wheelchair. In the Sports Tourer, meanwhile, it's been given more convenient ways to like about its boot space that can accommodate up to 1,665 litres such as the special tailgate that can be opened at the lift of your foot in case your hands are full. Because of such generous space, both the Grand Sport and the Sport Tourer are very accommodating indeed.

Regarding the tech word, both the Insignia Grand Sport and Sport Tourer now come with IntelliLink system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility so no matter your smartphone, these tech saves you more than just distracted driving and for occupants who are so busy doing stuff on their mobile phones, OnStar's 4G LTE Wi-Fi Hotspot is ready for these kinds of people who want to do silly status updates on social media sites. Convenient, isn't it?

2018 Opel Insignia
2018 Opel Insignia

In terms of handling, the new Insignia, apart from its Malibu-derived platform, feels very above average for midsize saloon, in fact it is pretty good indeed for a car made for company car drivers and fleet decision makers but there's a real kicker to this new Insignia because later on, a 4x4 variant with the Torque Vectoring will make the new Insignia range very convincing for a company car because with torque vectoring on a 4x4 Insignia, you might almost have the same driving impression as the Ford Focus RS and that makes it from pretty good to very good if you got the chance to sample its clever four-wheel drive powertrain that works like a Ford Focus RS in every tangible way. Yes, please.

The choice of engines at launch comes with a 1.5L DI Turbo and a 1.5L ECOTEC DI Turbo but later on, a 2.0L turbo, 1.6L diesel (with or without ECOTEC), and a 2.0L diesel may follow, and depending on the choice of engines, they can be mated with either a 6-speed AT, MT, or even an 8-speed AT at a later date. Most of the engines are made out of aluminum and because these engines are very light indeed, they are contributed to such better fuel efficiency fit for today's roads. It may not be much to satisfy your driving style but they're very decent enough for a midsize car like this.

To keep the new Insignia well-suited for today's driving conditions, it's been given a host of safety features such as a brand new 360-degree camera, Rear View Camera, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Advanced Park Assist, Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert, Following Distance Indication, Forward Collision Alert, Traffic Sign Assist, and a wide range of radar and camera-based automatic assistance for a safe driving feel that will satisfy most of health and safety standards.

Should you buy one? The new Insignia starts from 25,940 Euros (17,185 GBP) for the Grand Sport fastback while the Sports Tourer costs 26,940 Euros (18,685 GBP). That sounds like great value for money for a pretty good executive saloon fit enough to become the ideal car for company car drivers and fleet decision makers but the new Insignia is more than just being a company car, it's an ideal family car fit for day-to-day use and it's starting to gain shape with all these new features but demonstrating its world-class capabilities is yet to be seen but I'm sure that for the rest of the world, it feels fine for a midsize saloon of this caliber but for the Australians getting one next year as the new Holden Commodore, that's going to be a very different story that should be taken very seriously.

Photo: Opel/Vauxhall

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Gintama (2017 film)

A favorite from your big sisters' list of favorite anime/manga franchise, Gintama is what happens when Edo Period Japan faced some sort of alien invasion and modernization became part of the everyday life, except for one swordsman recklessly takes on all sorts of problems head-on, with the help of his friends. Think of Gintama like Bleach but it just came and went, which is the sort of thing you like to get into, and with the live-action movie adaptation, some as suspect they're going to treat it like last year's your name.

Gintama (2017 film)

This live-action adaptation of the highly-controversial, yet very successful manga series that spawned five anime seasons as seen on TV Tokyo, features an all-star cast such as Shun Oguri as Gintoki Sakata, Masaki Suda as Shinpachi Shimura, Kanna Hashimoto as Kagura, Masaki Okada as Kotarou Katsura, Masami Nagasawa as Tae Shimura, Tsuyoshi Muro as Gengai Hiraga, Jiro Sato as Henpeita Takechi, Nanao as Matako Kijima, and many other big names in the Japanese showbizness.

With a storyline that sounds almost original compared to the manga franchise it was based upon, this film does show some heart when it comes to jumble different genre to became one of Japan's most-anticipated films of the summer name. With all that action thriller, slapstick comedy that is beyond Gintama standards, heartfelt drama, suspense, and classic Gintama moments, it's no wonder there are most people got hooked to this film as much as every Gintama episode ever watched talked about even at their own sleep and it's our big sisters to blame for such goodness this film promises.

Because this live-action Gintama film is better than they expected, it's going to be a talk of the town and with upcoming live-action adaptations they're looking forward to like Tokyo Ghoul, Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, and Ajin, Gintama takes the cake as one of Japan's best summer blockbuster films and let's see how can they describe how are they going to file the film's coolness in five hundred words or more. Well, they did and the crowd loves it.

My rating: 4.1 out of 5.

2017 NASCAR Monster Energy Cup - Overton's 301

As summer continues to heats up in the great country of the United States of America, the state of New Hampshire became a battleground for the best NASCAR drivers in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup series and nothing in this summer season is more hotter than seeing drivers engaging on a close-quarters combat to the finish line.

In Lap 40, Eric Jones's #77 got smashed into the wall in turn three while in Lap 75, Martin Truex Jr. cleared the first stage. In Lap 88, the #3 car from Austin Dillon went sideways but it's a near miss for most drivers trying to avoid colliding him. Lap 150 and Kyle Busch cleared Stage 2. 25 laps later, smoke is poured in the #22 car, probably mechanical failures.

After 301 laps in New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Denny Hamlin is the winner of the race, making it his 30th Monster Energy series win.

Next race is at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Brantley Gilbert Big Machine Brickyard 400 on the 23rd of July.

Let's Do The News! (July 19, 2017)

- President Rodrigo Duterte is hoping that Martial Law in Mindanao will get extended until the end of the year. Thru a letter to Congress, Duterte detailed his desire to extend the Martial Law in Mindanao for six more months.

- 31 individuals were arrested in a one-time big operation due to being involved in crime and violating Caloocan City ordinances. The operation was conducted in four barangays, from Brgy. 117 up to Brgy. 120, of the BMBA Compound and ended at about 2300.

- 10 bus terminals in the stretch of EDSA will be closed by the MMDA due to the violation of the "Nose in, Nose out Policy".

- Communist Party of the Philippines founding Chairman Jose Maria Sison warned that peace talks between the government and their group will fail if the declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao will extend until year's end.

- The Philippine National Police promises to allow the protest movements of militant groups to get near the Batasan Pambansa Complex during President Duterte's second SONA.

- The United States has issued a travel advisory to its citizens currently in the Philippines to avoid Marawi City and Sulu due to kidnapping threat to foreign tourists by terrorists and rebel groups.

- US President Donald Trump's voter commission is now facing at least seven federal lawsuits.

- Mercedes-Benz unveiled their first-ever pickup truck, the X-Class. Based on a Nissan pickup truck, the X-Class comes with three styling packs and a choice from a 2.3L diesel to a V6 diesel with permanent all-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox.

2018 Mercedes-Benz X-Class
- Former Doctor Who David Tennant, Sherlock writer Mark Gatiss, and Game of Thrones' Emilia Clarke are now part of the cast of the upcoming Thunderbirds Are Go animated series, according to reports.


Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Ssangyong Tivoli Armour

Ssangyong's compact SUV, the Tivoli, is now on its 2018 model year and this time, it's been given a fresh minor change and a new name. Meet the new Tivoli Armour, an updated version of Ssangyong's compact SUV made for individuality.

2018 Ssangyong Tivoli

Of course, the new Tivoli Armour is designed for individuality for new owners looking for something that will suit their style and apart from that redesigned front bumper and some new alloys, customers can personalize their Tivoli Armour just they way they like. In the new GEAR EDITION variant, customers can personalize their Tivoli by the exterior paint, roof paint, outside mirror, hood decals, roof decals, emblems, and a choice of 17 and 18-inch alloys.

2018 Ssangyong Tivoli interior
2018 Ssangyong Tivoli interior

Nothing's new about the interior of the Tivoli, except that it now offers two interior colors such as brown and black. The instrumental panel can be change to up to six different colors while the room temperature can be cool or warm thanks to its climate control, the multimedia system serves more than just music and navigation, the rear seats can be folded for more cargo space, there's so much you can do with it.

It still comes with the same e-XGi160 1.6L petrol engine that develops 126PS of power and 16kg-m of torque but now a 1.6L XDi diesel engine is added but it produces 11ps less than the petrol model, 115PS compared to the previous model's 126PS but torque's 30.6kg-m of torque. The choice of either a 6-speed manual gearbox and a 6-speed automatic remains but the diesel model comes only with an automatic gearbox.

Amazingly, a Smart 4WD System is added on the Tivoli, which can adapt on any road conditions at ease and that's a good thing in case of summer storms.

For safety, the Tivoli Armour now comes with autonomous emergency brake that can brake by itself in an event of a near-collision scenario and apart from this, it also comes with Daytime Running Lamps, Electronic Stability Program, Tire Pressure Monitoring System, and seven airbags.

The facelifted Tivoli starts at 16,510,000 KRW for the petrol and 20,600,000 for the diesel.

Photo: Ssangyong Motor Company

Let's Do The News! (July 18, 2017)

- The Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar expresses hope that President Rodrigo Duterte's State Of The Nation Address next week will be a longer and meaningful speech.

- PISTON Chairman George San Mateo hinted of a possible larger transport strike soon following the rally on Monday in Mendiola, Manila regarding their opposition on the planned PUV modernization of the government. According to the group if they are still neglected by the President they will launch a three-day-transport strike this coming August.

- The Department of Environmental and Natural Resources is currently investigating the claim that an area in Boracay, known for its sanctuary for endangered fruit bats, is being cleared. According to a certain environmentalist group, a certain private developer is clearing the area near the Puka Shell Beach at Barangay Yapak, well known for its sanctuary of the endangered fruit bats. The area was issued a “no-building zone” by the DENR for the growth and inhabitants of the animals.

- Egypt will end visa-free entry for Qatari nationals with some expectations, according to the Egyptian Foreign Ministry, the latest measure taken against Doha which Cairo and three Gulf governments are boycotting. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt imposed sanctions on Qatar on June 5, cutting diplomatic and transport ties with the tiny Gulf monarchy, after accusing it of financing militant groups and allying with their regional arch-foe Iran. Doha denies the accusations.

- A centenarian Japanese doctor who saw patients until just months before his death and helped set up the medical systems that have made Japan one of the world's longest-lived nations died on Tuesday at the age of 105.

- Actress Judy Ann Santos is currently earning praises from netizens after she was caught going through her daily grind at the mall sans bodyguard and even obliged fans for selfies.

- During the summer meeting of the National Governors Association, Tesla boss Elon Musk predicts that cars in the next decade will be autonomous.

- A new trailer for the upcoming Blade Runner 2049 film is now up.


Monday, July 17, 2017

The Seattle CID DragonFest 2017

It was a sunny weekend at the Seattle Chinatown International District when the annual Dragon Fest, sponsored by our Pacific Northwestern friends from McDonald's, returns to this venue for the best of Asian-American showcase Washingtonians has to offer and this is one of the best events you may have missed during your Seattle summer vacation.

From martial arts, kabuki, Korean folk music, Indian rhythms, Chinese cultural dances, Hawaiian entertainment, anime cosplay, taiko, jazz, Capoeira, and the best of Thailand, this year's Dragon Fest has them all. There's even that $3 food walk for those who want to experience some round the world food adventure that salivated their taste buds and their appetite for this immensive food trip like no other.

Have a look at some of the pics...

More pics:

Video log:

Let's Do The News! (July 17, 2017)

- PNP Director-General Roland dela Rosa explains why the PNP recommend the extension of Martial Law in Mindanao. The first reason is that narco-politicians helping the Maute are not yet accounted for and second is the spread of loose firearms in Lanao Del Sur and nearby areas that they still have to recover.

- Three inmates were killed while one is injured and 10 others fled after a "mass jailbreak" in Jolo, Sulu last Sunday morning. The jailbreak happened around 0125 after the detainees broke the detention cells and jumped off from the ceiling of the municipal hall. The AFP immediately sent troops and K9 units to chase the escaped members of Abu Sayyaf Group and other illegal drug suspects.

- As Islamic State's reign in Iraq has came to an end, their families fear reprisals as relatives from the fallen militants will live to pay the price for their actions.

- Nine people were killed in the Arizona flash flood.

- Indonesia, last weekend, blocked access to the encrypted messaging service Telegram, citing concerns that it was being used to spread “radical and terrorist propaganda” in the world’s largest Muslim-majority nation. The move comes amid heightened concerns over the increasing presence and influence of Islamic State in Southeast Asia.

- George A. Romero, the master of the zombie film genre with “Night of the Living Dead” and a series of sequels that left a lasting impact on horror movies, died of lung cancer in a Toronto hospital on Sunday, his business partner said. He was 77.

- Oscar-winning actor Martin Landau passed away at the age of 89. Landau died at UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles on Saturday from unexpected complications during a short hospitalization for an undisclosed illness, publicist Dick Guttman said in a statement on Sunday.

- THE IDOLM@STER SideM anime will air this October.

- For those who love fighting games; Darkstalkers' Jedah will appear in Marvel vs. CAPCOM Infinite while Abigail from Final Fight will appear in Street Fighter V as a DLC and Garou Densetsu's villain Geese Howard will appear in Tekken 7 as a DLC.

- Check out the teaser trailer of the second series of Amazon's The Grand Tour.


F1 2017: British GP

The British Grand Prix of this season's Formula 1 championship has a chock full of surprises in store in this race, where a homegrown hero made some outstanding honors all in the name for gunning for the championship title against his newfound rivalry.

Mercedes-AMG's Lewis Hamilton made history at the British Grand Prix as this is the fifth time he won the British Grand Prix in Silverstone, joining the ranks of legends such as Jim Clark and Alain Prost as the most successful drivers at the British Grand Prix. With Hamilton made history at Silverstone, his teammate Valtteri Bottas placed 2nd and Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen placed 3rd respectively. Other finishers include Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo from Red Bull Racing, Nico Hulkenberg from Renault, and Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel.

The unlucky ones in the race, meanwhile, were McLaren's Fernando Alonso, Toro Rosso's Carlos Sainz, and Renault's Jolyon Palmer, when his car suffered hydraulics failure on the formation lap, ending his Grand Prix run.

Onto the overall standings, the gap between Vettel and Hamilton are now narrowed to just one point, 177 to 176, while Bottas' in 3rd place with 154 points.

Next week's race is on Hungary on the 30th of July.

FIA Formula E 2016-2017: New York

New York City is the penultimate battlefield for this season's FIA Formula E Championship and just like in Berlin, it's a two-parter race that happened this weekend, giving them plenty of reasons why fans are coming back to see what's next for the drivers as well as the drivers doing overtime to survive in this technical city course.

In the first part of the New York ePrix, victor goes to Sam Bird from DS Virgin Racing while Techeetah's Jean-Eric Vergne placed 2nd and his teammate Stephane Sarrazin placed 3rd. In the 2nd part, meanwhile, Sam Bird also wins the race while Mahindra's Felix Rosenqvist and Nick Heidfeld placed 2nd and 3rd respectively.

Race highlights:

So, after that penultimate two-parter in the Big Apple, it seems that Sebastien Buemi is leading the overall rankings by 157 points while ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport's Lucas Di Grassi's 10 points behind Buemi and Mahindra's Rosenqvist's in 3rd place with 104 points.

The FIA Formula E 2016-2017 Championship ends in Montreal, Canada, on the 29th to 30th of July, 2017. Don't miss the finale!

Jodie Whittaker named as the next Doctor Who

We knew it will happen but here it is. Following Chris Chibnall's takeover as the new showrunner of BBC's hit TV series Doctor Who, the star who will play as the 13th Doctor has been named and for the first time, an actress named Jodie Whittaker.

The BBC announced the star who will be playing The Doctor in next year's season, under the new rule of incoming Executive Producer Chris Chibnall, as Jodie Whittaker. This will be the first time a woman will be taking over the role of The Doctor from the outgoing Peter Capaldi, whose tenure will end at this year's Christmas Special which stars Adventures of Space and Time's David Bradley reprising his First Doctor role from the 2013 biopic into the world of Doctor Who.

Born in 1982, graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 2005, Whittaker starred in many programs such as Broadchurch, Black Mirror, The Smoke, Cranford, The Night Watch, The Accused, and Tess of the D'Urbervilles.

Announcement video:

The next season of Doctor Who starts next year after the Christmas Special, where Peter Capaldi's tenure as The Doctor ends. Are you excited for the Thirteenth's arrival? Is a female Doctor Who met your expectations?


Sunday, July 16, 2017

FH3 Hot Wheels: The Big Finish!

If you get up to 100 medals during your Forza Horizon 3 Hot Wheels adventure, you'll have access to the biggest Hot Wheels experience ever witnessed, which is none other than the Hot Wheels Goliath event. This event serves as the ultimate challenge where their insane driving experience they felt at the Hot Wheels Thrilltopia will be heavily tested in this ultimate rollercoaster ride where one single mistake will spell disaster for the driver.

For this final challenge at the Thrilltopia, I've selected FH3 Hot Wheel's hero car, the legendary Twin Mill, one of the most iconic Hot Wheels toy cars ever made, and because this is the hero car of FH3 Hot Wheels, there's a saying; Where it all began, where it all will end.

Of course, most of you saying there is no way your Twin Mill hero will survive Hot Wheels Goliath because this is an S2-class race and this car's S1-class and even if it tweaked to meet its regulations, there's no way it can take on powerful opponents. There will be Regeras, FXXKs, and Huayra BCs hounding on my backs like thieves at night and I understand that but this is the hero car so let the hero car win just once, ok? Let heroes finish what they started and that's my point.

Some folks are right though because even though it possesses almost a thousand and a half horses from its twin engines bolted at the front, it feels very heavy to handle and in this extreme circuit event, there is an extremely high chance that the Twin Mill will end up on a major slippage or fall on the ramp because of some jerk doing big miscalculations on where he will launch his favorite hero car at. But no matter the risk, I want to do this for the honor of Hot Wheels and nothing's going to stop me from giving a proper sendoff to the Hot Wheels Thrilltopia.

Without further ado, here goes...

After so much mud, sweat, and gears later, I finally did it! I finally owned the HW Goliath with the hero car and man, looks like I don't want to do that thing again unless I need a much suitable fast car for this task.

So, I finally conquered some of the extreme tracks on the rest of Horizon Australia. In the main campaign, I took down the Goliath Circuit with the Centenario. In Blizzard Mountain, I won the Kingmaker to claim the Ford Focus RX from Gymkhana 9, and now, I have beaten the Hot Wheels Goliath with the Twin Mill. It's all in the heroes' line of duty; finish what they have started.

Now that I finished the extremes, what's next? Well, we got a lot of mess to clean this up after all these tough challenges because even though I braved through the toughest, the journey's not yet over because there are plenty of leftovers around Horizon Australia, Blizzard Mountain, and Thrilltopia that need to be cleaned. I guess it's all up to me now but if I have some impressions about the cars I'm driving, I'm free to do so, but in the meantime, the journey continues...
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