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NYSE, United Airlines downed by system outages

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: Jul 8, 2015 11:24 pm

In the last 24 hours, systems outages at the New York Stock Exchange and United Airlines have halted operations, as trading on the exchange was suspended for four hours and planes grounded for two.

 

 

 

In an interesting turn, hacker collective Anonymous may have prophetically predicted today's tumultuous events, but the agency and Government have been firm in rebuffing the possibility of any involvement.

 

 

At the time of print, trading has now resumed and United Airlines are back in the air.

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The US has released the al-Qaeda application form for digital reading

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: May 22, 2015 6:16 am

Alongside asking for the name of your grandfather and what occupation your father holds, al-Qaeda's application form is a quite extensive piece of writing as seen on Vox and released by the US Government recently as it has now been declassified.

 

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This form was found as part of Osama Bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad and is now available for public reading. Alongside in-depth religious questions, the applicant is asked about previous military experience, personal hobbies and investigations on if the prospective al-Qaeda employee has any relations to Pakistan.

 

Written quite well, it's certainly an interesting insight into what helps back al-Qaeda. It may look basic to you on the news, but there is some form of administration that must keep the whole thing afloat and this form helps portray that. Another interesting point is that it asks the applicant if they "wish to execute a suicide operation".

Continue reading 'The US has released the al-Qaeda application form for digital reading' (full post)

Kim Jong-un makes another claimed glorious achievement

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: May 19, 2015 6:47 am

If you're wondering what the North Korean leader has been up to lately, state-run media recently claimed yet another glorious achievement to add to the catalog alongside the leaders achievements including learning how to drive a car at three years old and assisting in landing a pilot on the sun.

 

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The photo and accompanying news report alleges that Kim Jong-un has climbed North Korea's highest mountain, Mt. Paektu, accompanied by hundreds of smiling North Korean fighter pilots.

 

It all looks pretty normal at first, but South Korean news reports have pointed out one photo in particular as a little odd (seen above). If you take a look a the smiling comrades in the rear it seems they're sitting perched atop a rock for comfort - however, upon closer inspection you'll notice clear air between their legs - so what are they sitting on?

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Statues of Assange, Snowden and Manning unveiled in Berlin

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: May 4, 2015 5:53 am

Depending on which part of the political spectrum you hail from, Julian Assange, Edward Snowden and Bradley Manning are either dangerous leakers, or freedom fighting whistleblowers, but either way, the trip have been commemorated in a art project which has been unveiled in Germany, according to a report published by RT News.

 

 

The work of Italian sculptor Davide Dormino, the installation 'Anything to Say?' encourages members of the public to join the trio on the empty chair situated next to them, telling media that "the fourth chair is open to anyone here in Berlin who wants to get up and say anything they want. This chair is, I guess, a place of free speech".

 

Meanwhile, last month in the US, a bust of Edward Snowden was placed in New York's Fort Greene park, but removed within hours by parks department officials.

Continue reading 'Statues of Assange, Snowden and Manning unveiled in Berlin' (full post)

Google exec amongst thousands killed in Nepal quake

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: Apr 27, 2015 4:09 am

The death toll from the 7.8-magnitude quake which struck Nepal on Saturday, leveling towns and triggering avalanches on Mount Everest, has tragically risen to nearly 3,200. The disaster has also claimed the life of Dan Fredinburg, an adventurous Google executive who headed the privacy division for Google X along with its product management team, who was scaling Everest at the time the quake hit.

 

 

Described as the worst quake to hit the region in 80 years, with widespread damage and injuries - even causing deaths in neighboring China and India, mainly from falling debris.

 

Google's Crisis Response team has moved fast to institute the 'Google People Finder' page, to get word on the safety of thousands of people still missing in the region, as well as proving $1 million in much needed aid.

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Crowdfund campaign aims to save endangered Aussie parrot species

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: Apr 3, 2015 1:28 am

One of the more recent offshoots of e-commerce, crowdfunding campaigns have willed some excellent products to existence thanks to the web, with notable success stories including the Pebble Smartwatch, Oculus Rift and Ouya. Now, a philanthropic campaign has been launched to save the future of a incredibly endangered Australian parrot species.

 

 

Scientists and conservationists from The Australian National University have launched a campaign on crowdfunding platform Pozible to save the swift parrot from extinction. With less than 1000 breeding pairs in the wild in the Australian island state Tasmania (yes - the same place made famous for the Tasmanian Devil), it's incredibly important to rescue the species before they become extinct, thanks to threats posed by the natural and developing world. The campaign aims to raise $40,000 AUD to trial a range of breeding boxes that prevent the parrots threat, the Sugar Glider from entering.

 

The campaign is off to a good start, with over half of the target funds already raised - although more is still needed. The campaign will be supported by us here at TweakTown.

Continue reading 'Crowdfund campaign aims to save endangered Aussie parrot species' (full post)

Nutella creator Michele Ferrero passes away

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: Feb 16, 2015 3:45 am

Nutella addicts, put down your chocolaty spread for a moment and tip your hat to the creator of the delectable treat, Michele Ferrero, who has passed away at the ripe old age of 89.

 

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Ferrero's father Pietro Ferrero established the company that carried his name in 1946, Pietro Ferrero created the recipe for a creamy hazelnut and cocoa mix which was later tweaked and sold to market as Nutella when it was launched by Michele Ferrero in 1964. Since then, it's gone on to be the highest selling chocolate nut spread, beloved by millions. Under Michele's leadership Ferrero expanded its range of products exponentially, including Ferrero Rocher, Raffaello, Mon Chéri and the Kinder chocolate line, including the egg-favorite Kinder Surprise.

 

At the time of his death, Ferrero was the richest man in Italy, with a net worth of $30 billion.

Australian PM Tony Abbott says social media is 'Electronic Graffiti'

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: Jan 27, 2015 7:02 am

Yesterday was Australia day, often known as 'the day of the drunk bogan' but also a time to celebrate and reflect on everything that is Australia. 'The Land Down Under's' Prime Minister Tony Abbott celebrated this occasion by awarding Prince Philip with an Australian Knighthood, seeing major backlash among global social media.

 

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Mr. Abbott dismissed the haters, labeling social media as "electronic graffiti," disregarding members of the public and their opinions as slander.

 

When addressing the issue at a press conference, Mr. Abbott dismissed the online opinions and scolded the media for publishing them by stating "I'll leave social media to its own devices. Social media is kind of like electronic graffiti and I think that in the media, you make a big mistake to pay too much attention to social media. You wouldn't report what's sprayed up on the walls of buildings."

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SkyMall has fallen from grace - Bankruptcy filing is in progress

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: Jan 25, 2015 6:34 pm

If you're after some weird and wacky objects, they might be a little harder to source in the near future as Xhibit Corp. has filed for bankruptcy - we're not talking about the rapper.

 

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Skymall has blamed exterior sources, stating in their announcement that this shut down is apparently due to "the increased use of electronic devices on planes, fewer people browsed the SkyMall in-flight catalogue. [This] resulted in additional competition from e-commerce retailers and additional competition for the attention of passengers, all of which further negatively impacted SkyMall's catalogue sales."

 

Down but not out, SkyMall Chief Executive Scott Wiley states that he's "extremely disappointed in this result and are hopeful that SkyMall and the iconic 'SkyMall' brand find a home to continue to operate as SkyMall has for the last 25 years."

Continue reading 'SkyMall has fallen from grace - Bankruptcy filing is in progress' (full post)

Doomsday Clock moved even closer to nuclear apocalypse

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Business, Politics & Money | Posted: Jan 23, 2015 8:53 am

The doomsday clock, the metaphoric symbol which represents how close the world is to life-ending catastrophe has been upgraded by two minutes, now resting just three minutes to midnight.

 

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According to CBS News, the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists made the adjustment overnight to reflect concerns about the world's huge stockpile of nuclear weapons and concerns regarding climate change. This is the first adjustment to the clock since 2012, when it was set to 11.55PM.

 

The latest the Doomsday Clock has ever been set was in 1953, at 11.58PM when the United States announced the first test of the destructive hydrogen bomb. The current time is set at a precarious one minute from that.

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