Lenovo to phase out the Motorola brand name

The Motorola brand, which has been a fixture in the technology world for 85 years, is about to be phased out by its parent company Lenovo.

The US-born company was bought from Google by the Chinese giant in 2014, with the company continuing the lineage of Motorola handsets.

However, the days of the Motorola name appearing on phones and in marketing materials will come to an end this year.

Motorola Chief Operating Officer Rick Osterloh told CNET: “We’ll slowly phase out Motorola and focus on Moto.”

The company plans to simply use ‘Moto’ and the familiar batwing logo for high end devices, while all other handsets will feature the Lenovo Vibe branding. Even the top devices like the Moto X will feature the blue Lenovo logo rather than the Motorola name.

The rather complex blending of the two brands will involve Moto devices being introduced to Lenovo stronghold territories and marketed it as premium devices.

The budget Vibe devices will also be introduced to western markets to complement the high-end Motorola devices according to the report.

If this wasn’t confusing enough, the Motorola company is being retained from an organisational perspective and that division will now oversee all of Lenovo’s smartphones activity.

Motorola is credited with inventing the first mobile phone with the DynaTAC released in 1984. Likewise, the company’s importance to the development of consumer technology in other sectors cannot be overstated.

In 1930 it released one of the first commercially successful car radios and in the 50s had a major role in the foundation of cable television systems. In 1969 a Motorola radio transmitted the first words from the Moon to Earth and in 1990 it launched the world’s first digital HD television.

Adios, Motorola.

Whilst the Motorola Brand name is strong in the mobile phone and two way radio industry it is an important institute in the communications field that should be preserved, as this article says it was there at the start of telecommunications and has been around for longer than most of us can remember, it would be a shame if it was pulled apart by Lonovo.

ETRI presents a blueprint of the 5G Future

We will see a huge change in the way we access the the internet in the future when 5G is here, at speeds that only big businesses and high level internet companies see at the moment, we will have this to hand on our smart phones and tablets. When 5G is hundreds of times faster than any of the UK’s broadbands, households will be looking to the mobile phone companies to supply their home broadband.

A 5G future is no longer a distant one, but an upcoming reality. High quality videos of more than 10Mbps can be served simultaneously to 100 users even in a train running at up to 500km/h. People can experience data rates that are 100 times faster than currently available technologies.

The Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) of Korea will hold a “5G technology demonstration” on the 18th December, 2015. It will demonstrate future SNS (social network service) and several 5G core technologies such as “millimeter wave”, “Mobile Hot-spot Network”, “in-band full duplex” and so on.

5G is the next generation wireless technology that would provide even faster data rates, even lower delays, and even more devices connected than 4G. Accordingly, distinct and differentiated applications are expected in 5G.

ETRI’s “future SNS” is a kind of trial service model to apply 5G technologies that provides dynamic user-centric connection to neighboring people, things and spaces. It is characterized by instant content-sharing between users, communication with neighboring things, and Giga-bps(Gbps)-grade video applications in vehicles.

5G core technologies demonstrated by ETRI include the following:

— MHN (Mobile Hot-spot Network) is a mobile backhaul technology that provides high-speed Internet access of Gbps in vehicles at speeds of up to 500 km/h (e.g. KTX in Korea). Almost 100 passengers can watch videos of high quality simultaneously.

— ZING is a near-field communication technology that enables mass data to be transmitted with 3.5 Gbps data rate between neighboring devices within the radius of 10cm.

— Single-RF-Chain compact MIMO technology enables a single antenna to simulate the effect of multiple antenna. It can reduce antenna volume and cancel inter-antenna interference in a multi-antenna system.

— Millimeter wave (mmWave) beam switching technology provides fast switching of radio beams to mobile users, and therefore allows seamless Gbps-grade service in mobile environments.

— Mobile Edge Platform (MEP) is a mobile edge cloud server on vehicles that enables passengers to enjoy customized Gbps-grade content and connects them with neighbors, things and spaces. It provides user-centric services.

— In-band Full Duplex technology can transmit and receive signals simultaneously over the same frequency band. It can increase spectral efficiency by up to two times.

— Small cell SW technology is designed for AP(Access Point)-sized small cell base stations that can reduce communication dead zones and improve data rates per user in a hot-spot area.

“With this demonstration event, we are officially introducing our R&D results on 5G. We will continue to lead the development of 5G technologies. Also, we are trying to develop commercialization technologies needed by businesses, and to construct a 5G ecosystem.” said Dr. Hyun Kyu Chung, vice president of ETRI Communication & Internet Lab.

In January, 2016, ETRI will demonstrate Giga internet service and future SNS in a Seoul subway train installed with MHN and ZING kiosks. ETRI will also introduce hand-over technology on a millimeter wave mobile communication system and 5G radio access technology that satisfies 1 millisecond radio latency.

About ETRI

Established in 1976, ETRI is a non-profit Korean government-funded research organization that has been at the forefront of technological excellence for about 40 years. In the 1980s, ETRI developed TDX (Time Division Exchange) and 4M DRAM. In the 1990s, ETRI commercialized CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) for the first time in the world. In the 2000s, ETRI developed Terrestrial DMB, WiBro, and LTE-A, which became the foundation of mobile communications.

Recently, as a global ICT leader, ETRI has been advancing communication and convergence by developing Ship Area Network technology, Genie Talk (world class portable automatic interpretation; Korean-English/Japanese/Chinese), and automated valet parking technology. As of 2015, ETRI has about 2,000 employees where about 1,800 of them are researchers.

Perfectly Preserved Lion Cub found in Siberia

Cancer affects millions of lives, possibly even more. Everybody knows somebody that has been forever hurt, either physically or emotionally, by this vicious, unforgiving ailment. Most of us know somebody who has lost their life to the disease.

Despite this, cancer survival rates are higher than ever before. In recent years, cancer treatment has improved rapidly, but a complete cure has always appeared to be just beyond reach, a tantalising Holy Grail of medical science. This month, however, an announcement was made that could have the potential to end all that.

The good news is that human trials could begin in as little as four years’ time. If those trials prove to be successful, then science will have made a major stride towards eradicating the disease completely.

A joint Dutch/Canadian team stumbled across this miraculous discovery whilst searching for ways to treat malaria in pregnant women.

According to the team, the carbohydrate that malaria attacks in the placenta is exactly the same as a carbohydrate present in cancer cells.

As Metro.co.uk reports, Ali Salanti from the University of Copenhagen said, “for decades, scientists have been searching for similarities between the growth of a placenta and a tumor (…) The placenta is an organ, which within a few months grows from only few cells into an organ weighing approx. two pounds, and it provides the embryo with oxygen and nourishment in a relatively foreign environment. (…) In a manner of speaking, tumors do much the same, they grow aggressively in a relatively foreign environment.”

Intrigued by this idea, the team tailored a special malaria protein to include a toxin designed to target cancerous cells. The cancer cells absorb the protein and are then in turn killed by the malaria virus. Theoretically, this idea is sound and experiments on mice with cancer have already begun.

It’s definitely early days yet, but the team are hopeful that this innovative new treatment could provide scientists with a valuable weapon in the fight against cancer. If the trials are successful, the potential benefits are simply staggering to consider. It just goes to show that no dream is too big to accomplish, provided we never stop believing that it’s possible. Imagine a world without cancer and perhaps, in time, we won’t have to.

Unidentified Space Debris, Nicknamed WTF Is On Collision Course For Earth!

WTF (to be precise WT1190F) is an appropriate name for the unidentified object that is currently hurtling towards our planet at alarming speed. No, my friends, I haven’t taken up a job writing for the Weekly World News. What sounds like science fiction (or at least an episode of Futurama) is actually science fact.

The object is set to crash into us in less than a month. Despite its relatively close proximity to our atmosphere, nobody is quite sure just what WTF actually is. All anyone knows is its size (roughly two metres in length) and the fact that it is hollow, strongly hinting at the possibility that the object is man made.

Experts are suggesting various possibilities as to the identity of the mysterious object, the most tantalising being that WTF is actually a piece of leftover technology from the moon missions (possibly even the fabled Saturn V that took Neil Armstrong and co to the moon). Of course, it could just be here to talk to the whales (Star Trek joke, in case anyone reading this is scratching their heads).

The problem of space junk is becoming more serious by the day. In addition to approximately 3,700 satellites currently orbiting the earth (of which around 2,600 are totally inactive, effectively making them space junk), there are literally tens of thousands of objects larger than a tennis ball floating above our heads at any given time. In addition to that, there are an estimated hundred million objects in the 1mm or less category. Put simply, space is a mess.

In 1997, there were 2,271 man-made satellites orbiting the earth, a number that has increased by around 1,500 since then. Instead of slowing down, however, the recent rise in private satellite launches will likely see these figures (if you’ll pardon the pun) skyrocketing over the next decade or so.

In fact, last year alone, the International Space Station (ISS) had to move its position three times in order to avoid collision with objects large enough to cause serious damage. These collisions were potentially fatal to the astronauts aboard the space station. The ISS actually spends an alarming amount of time ducking and dodging flying chunks of space junk, some of which is detected too late for the ISS to manoeuvre away from it, causing the astronauts to simply shelter-in-space and hope for the best. In 2007, a chunk of debris actually damaged the space shuttle Endeavour.

Despite laws that state that most satellites must be launched to an altitude that will encourage them to fall to earth and burn up within 25 years of their original launch, launching anything into space is a messy business indeed. This has led to fears that the population of space junk in earth’s higher obits could actually become self-sustaining, i.e. new junk could be created in the frequent collisions between existing junk. This is often referred to as The Kessler Syndrome after Nasa scientist Don Kessler, who first warned us about this process as far back as 1978.

The Kessler Syndrome is a very real concern. In 2009, for example, two small satellites collided over Siberia, creating something like 2000 new junk items, many of which are still in orbit today and posing a very real threat to existing satellites. Keep in mind that these items can travel at speeds exceeding 17,000 mph; at that sort of speed, even a grain of sand could kill.

The good news is that WTF is expected to burn up harmlessly in our atmosphere, meaning that, although we’ll probably never know its true identity, at least it won’t harm anybody. If it fails to burn away completely, WTF is expected to land on the Indian Ocean, somewhere off the coast of Sri Lanka around the 13th of November. So, unless you have a fishing holiday planned in the region, you ought to be safe.

Radio spectrum allocated for global flight tracking

This very simple, very easily executable solution to a problem that is growing. The Frequencies are already allocated to the airline industry and a simple piece of equipment (non expensive) can be installed. You can find the full article here.

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has allocated radio spectrum for global flight tracking for passenger aircraft using satellite-based systems.

The move follows developments spurred by the so far unexplained disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 in March last year, which prompted the aviation community to look into possibilities of constant monitoring of passenger planes in flight.

The frequency band of 1087.7-1092.3MHz has been allocated, which is already being used for data transmissions between planes and terrestrial stations that are within the line of sight.

Extending the system to cover also communications between planes and satellites and satellites and terrestrial stations will enable creating a complex system capable of tracking passenger planes throughout the flight even over oceans and remote areas.

The ITU agreed on the allocation at its 2015 World Radiocommunication Conference following a call by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

Performance criteria for satellite reception of the signals will be established by ICAO.

“In reaching this agreement at WRC-15, ITU has responded in record time to the expectations of the global community on the major issue concerning global flight tracking,” said ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao. “ITU will continue to make every effort to improve flight tracking for civil aviation.”

ITU has been working on standards to facilitate the transmission of flight data in real time since early after the MH370 disaster.

Already in April 2014, less than a month after the aircraft’s disappearance, Malaysian Minister for Communications and Multimedia called upon ITU to address the issue.

“The allocation of frequencies for reception of ADS-B signals from aircraft by space stations will enable real-time tracking of aircraft anywhere in the world,” said François Rancy, Director of the ITU Radiocommunication Bureau. “We will continue to work with ICAO and other international organizations to enhance safety in the skies.”

In October 2014, the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference meeting in Busan, Republic of Korea, instructed WRC-15 to consider global flight tracking in its agenda.

 

2 Way Radios For Gatherings

You have actually most likely seen walkie talkies made use of by cops and security personnel strolling near hotels. The digital age allowed the growth of new devices especially the increase of cellphones. Nowadays, we can send out SMS messages and call people within seconds. However, have you ever thought why two way radios are still around?

The advantages of 2 way radios are a quicker service and less expensive calls. Cellphone businesses charge by the minute for a telephone call or per SMS. There is also no busy tone sent out because the network does not get too congested. This guarantees that a call is carried out right the preliminary time.

Some other individuals who use two way radios are event organizers. As you see in films, they make use of walkie talkies for encouraging 1 another of the activities and whereabouts making sure that every thing flows efficiently. There are a number of people who have them for their kids or for use close to their houses, even. The world of radios has developed quite a bit because its humble starts. They can be produced in very little sizes and can have remarkably strong signals. Such gadgets have been made use of in various emergency situation circumstances and have led to saving many lives.

On the other hand, when radios are bought that are badly made and are not adequate sufficient to perform the method they have to, it can cause extreme concerns. It may assist to know which brands are suggested when it concerns walkie-talkies.

There are four manufacturers that are incredibly recommended for your two way radio requirements. The HYT radio brand is a fantastic option to make. Ritron-not to be confused with Nikon-is another excellent brand that has been depended upon for relatively some time relating to these types of electronics. Selecting a solid brand for your walkie-talkie buy will guarantee you that you have actually produced the right option for your radio requires.

The majority of businesses have retained airing their advertising and marketing their services and products over the radio waves aside from printed media or multi-media. For the two way radio case, it has been widely made use of as coordination device particularly for stock, delivery, and emergency functions. The very best example would be using moving services in land operations like trucking services that makes use of walkie-talkies in communication with their base and update their location from time to time. This assists the trucking workforce to understand what is their job extra directions as well as keep client care by providing details of the status of their cargo.

Schools and other public establishments are also required to have back up communication gadgets like 2 way radios for emergency situations. This is handy especially for events like storms, floods, or any disconcerting coincidence that needs interaction for help or help. In most cases where power outage or disaster cuts off all other phone lines or disable signal protection the two way radio can quickly end up being a trustworthy alternative for communication gadget.

A two way radio for events is one that can both get and transfer on a range of FCC-approved frequencies. A number of elements enter play when it comes time to select the frequency you will be utilizing. Such elements can impact the quality of the signal. Among the most often touted is that these radios will work in surroundings where mobile phone is inoperable.

The ease of operation makes them favourites for individuals in a variety of occupations. Several people make use of a 2 method radio in the office, including construction workers, landscapers, security specialists, and firemens. They are a great and practical way to communicate. All it takes is a simple push of a button and you can speak with your associates.

In the case of a custodial conflict, requiring every child be had a look at and every adult be verified can be done easily with a 2 method radio. At end of day, students are launched to the lunch space, instructors inspect ids in the vehicle line, radio the front workplace to confirm the identity, and then radio the lunch room to dismiss the kid. The process takes 15 seconds and would keep kids much safer.

Complete strangers on campus can be recognized earlier and handled properly. Most schools utilize making use of electronic cameras today. Seeing an unfamiliar person on the video camera and getting a gatekeeper to the unfamiliar person immediately via a two method radio either quickly eliminates the risk or proves the requirement for a more intentional response.

Two way radios should belong of every school emergency situation strategy and provide many benefits in addition to being a security device.

With a two way radio for events, you can talk to numerous people at the same time, making it easier to give and get details. Some of these radios even have a function that allows you to talk to a single person if the info exchanged is personal. The customer support professionals at this website are educated and friendly, and can give you all the details you need.

Wrestling Star Challenges Presidential Candidate

In the wake of Hulk Hogan’s racist outburst about his daughter dating a black man, another racially charged issue has emerged from the weird and wild world of pro wrestling.

TNA wrestling star Tigre Uno, who has also wrestled for Mexico’s AAA (Asistencia Asesoria y Administracion) promotion as Extreme Tiger (sometimes written as Xtreme Tiger) has issued an open challenge to US Presidential candidate Donald Trump, over statements made by the latter regarding Mexican immigrants in the US.

Trump, himself an inductee to the WWE Hall of Fame and a personal friend of WWE boss Vince McMahon, made a number of ill-conceived public speeches wherein he blamed illegal Mexican immigrants for bringing drugs and crime to the country, before further suggesting that Mexican immigrants were more likely to be rapists than anybody else in the US.

He then promised that, if elected, he would build a great wall along the US/Mexican border. And no, Mr. Trump wasn’t trying to audition for Robert De Niro’s role in Machete either…

In an act of sheer, thoroughbred lunacy, Trump announced his desire to be US President by uttering the following “They’re sending us not the right people,” he said, followed by “The US has become a dumping ground for everyone else’s problems” and also “They’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing their problems,”

“They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists, and some I assume are good people but I speak to border guards and they tell us what we are getting.” He went on.

Mr. Trump then declared that the American Dream was dead and that current President Barack Obama had turned the US into a third world country- which is actually quite funny, when one considers that, if his statements were accurate, the opulence in which Mr. Trump actually lives would make him the latter day equivalent of a feudal lord.

In response to this nonsensical tirade, Tigre Uno began to author a series of Tweets challenging Trump’s views. He then delivered a heartfelt interview – in Spanish – to the viewers of TNA’s most recent Impact Wrestling broadcast. The video package featured shots of Tigre in his hometown of Tijuana speaking with local people and spending time with his children.

In a surprisingly cool and patient manner, the masked luchador said “I believe that Mexico is a great country. I have lived my whole life here in Tijuana. Mexicans are just passionate about our people. We are so proud of our history, who we are. We are very hard working people, we love our country. We are so proud of our culture and we love our lifestyle”

When asked to discuss Trump’s claims, Tigre responded, “Mostly all Mexicans who come to America are good people. They are good workers. They are artists, they are plumbers, they are carpenters, they are construction workers – some are even landlords. The people who come to the United States work hard, they come to do good things, come to make a life for themselves and their families”

Then, his point made, Tigre officially challenged Donald Trump to come to the next Impact Wrestling broadcast, saying, “I’m going to show you who a real Mexican is and who the real Mexicans who came here to work are. Not all Mexicans are bad. I’m Tigre Uno and I invite you to come to Impact Wrestling”

Fans have criticized TNA for attempting to capitalize on the furor surrounding Trump’s comments, but the reality is that Tigre originally made his statements without consulting the company and that TNA only became involved once they had ascertained that Tigre was indeed the author of the Tweets.

If Trump does turn up for the taping (which, quite frankly, would be a huge surprise in and of itself), he’s in for a long night. Trained by Rey Misterio Sr (Uncle of former WWE Champion Rey Mysterio), Tigre Uno has a long history not only of brutal, all out ring wars featuring tables, ladders and the like, but also of performing graceful aerial maneuvers that seemingly defy gravity.

Tigre is the current reigning TNA X-Division Champion and has also held AAA’s Cruiserweight and Tag Team Championships, as well as winning the 2011 Rey de Reyes (King of Kings) tournament.

Yes, wrestling may be a scripted show, but that doesn’t mean that Tigre couldn’t do some serious damage to Trump if he got the chance…

Wrestling Legend Rowdy Roddy Piper Dies At 61

The world of professional wrestling is in mourning following the death of the legendary Rowdy Roddy Piper last month. Piper suffered a cardiac arrest whilst at his home in Hollywood, California. He was just 61 years old.

For many kids (including myself) that first became fans in the mid-late 1980’s, Roddy Piper was the definitive wrestling heel (industry jargon for a bad guy). Whether hosting his notorious Piper’s Pit segment, or facing off against Hulk Hogan & Mr. T (with partner Mr. Wonderful Paul Orndorf) at the inaugural WrestleMania event, Piper was one of the industry’s biggest starts during one of its most popular and lucrative periods.

He was also instrumental in making the WWF (now WWE) brand the biggest in professional wrestling. In addition to headlining the very first WrestleMania event (a pioneering Pay-Per View extravaganza that could easily have ruined the company had it proved to be a failure), Piper also featured in one of WrestleMania II’s three main event matchups, thus securing his position as one of wrestling’s most bankable stars.

His undercard matches at WrestleManias III, VI and (the stone cold classic against Bret The Hitman Hart at) VIII are absolute highlights of a classic era of pro wrestling. He even acted as a guest referee for the main event of Bret Hart vs. Yokozuna at WrestleMania X. Younger fans, however, will undoubtedly remember Piper teaming with fellow veterans Ricky Steamboat and Jimmy Superfly Snuka to face Chris Jericho at WrestleMania XXV.

In an era defined by outlandish babyface characters with bodybuilder physiques and sometimes questionable in-ring abilities, Roddy Piper stood out as a genuine wrestler’s wrestler, an authentic tough guy – and the necessarily evil counterpoint to the simplistic, superheroic good guys being featured at the time by the WWF.

Born in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada in 1954, Roderick Toombs was always an unruly personality. Expelled from school at a young age and subsequently falling out with his father, (a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police) Toombs hit the road, staying in various youth hostels and earning a buck wherever he could. Eventually, the tempestuous youth wound up in a wrestling ring, making his in-ring debut at the tender age of just 15-years-old.

The kid was tough (he had a Black Belt in Judo), displayed a natural affinity for the ring and he had a roguish charisma all of his own. In addition, he really could play the bagpipes. After early stints jobbing in Verne Gagne’s AWA, NWA Houston and Fritz Von Erich’s Big Time Wrestling promotion in Dallas, Texas, Piper debuted for Mike and Gene LeBell’s NWA Hollywood promotion and soon became the outfit’s top heel. A slew of regional Championships followed.

Whilst working for promoter Roy Shire in the NWA’s San Francisco territory, Piper developed his character and ring work. In Los Angeles, he feuded with Chavo Guerrero Sr, Hector Guerrero and ultimately locked up against their father, Mexican wrestling legend Gory Guerrero (father of future WWE Champ Eddie). In The Pacific Northwest, he unseated former NWA World’s Heavyweight Champion Jack Brisco for Mid Atlantic’s version of the World Heavyweight Championship, a title he would go on to hold twice more.

In the mid 1980’s, Piper entered Vince McMahon’s insurgent WWF. He was billed as being from Glasgow, Scotland and was well known for being the only wrestler to wear a kilt to the ring. Fans ate it up. Feuding with such stars as Hulk Hogan, Adrian Adonis, Andre The Giant, Jimmy Superfly Snuka, Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase, Jerry The King Lawler and Bret Hitman Hart, to name but a few, Piper always brought out the best in his opponents and it was with the WWF that he became a household name, as well as one of the industry’s biggest ever stars.

In the mid-1990’s, Piper wrestled for WCW (World Championship Wrestling), where he debuted as one of the company’s headline stars. He feuded, once again, with Hulk Hogan and also battled old rivals such as Ric Flair, Bret Hart and ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage. Whilst working for WCW, he was even chosen to headline ‘Starrcade’, the company’s flagship Pay-Per-View event.

In his later career, Piper made sporadic reappearances for the WWE, briefly worked for TNA, enjoyed a reasonably successful acting career and also hosted his own podcast. He battled Hodgkin’s Lymphoma after being diagnosed with the illness in 2006, but had completely beaten it into remission as of last year. Despite the setbacks caused by his ill health, Piper wrestled his last match in 2011.

Although he never held a recognised World Heavyweight Championship, Piper will be remembered as one of the greatest WWF Intercontinental Champions of all time, a reign that was attested to during his appearance at this year’s WrestleMania XXXI, where he congratulated then-IC Champion Daniel Bryan on his victory. He also held other notable belts, such as the United States Championship, the WWF/E Tag Team Championship (with Ric Flair) and the NWA World Light Heavyweight Championship.

Piper was a member of the WWE Hall of Fame and the Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame, as well as the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame. He was also a member of the Cauliflower Alley Club.

On the August 3rd edition of RAW, the entire WWE roster, each member clad in Roddy’s signature Hot Rod t-shirts opened the show with a very moving ten bell salute in tribute to the fallen legend.

WWE boss Vince McMahon said, “Roddy Piper was one of the most entertaining, controversial and bombastic performers ever in WWE, beloved by millions of fans around the world. I extend my deepest condolences to his family.”

UFC Bantamweight Champion Rowdy Ronda Rousey dedicated her 34-second victory over Bethe Correia to Piper’s memory, “I just want to say that we lost a really close friend, Rowdy Roddy Piper, who gave me permission to use his name as a fighter (…) And so I hope him and my dad had a good time watching this today.”

Former WWE and WCW Champion (and Piper’s frequent in-ring rival) Bret Hart wrote, “I can’t find the words to describe the sorrow in my heart upon learning the news of my dear friend, Roddy Piper, passing away. He was my closest friend in the business, a man that schooled me and guided me throughout my career. In fact, if it wasn’t for Roddy Piper reaching out to help me, I’m sure I would’ve been a mere footnote in wrestling. He was always there for me. He was family to me.” Hart also recalled that, following his stroke in 2002; Piper was the only wrestler who visited him in hospital.

Hulk Hogan, another of Piper’s famous adversaries, said of Piper that, “He was my best friend. He is a legend. God’s gain is our loss. May his family in this time of need, find peace”

Other friends, colleagues and admirers of Piper’s included former WWF Champ The Iron Sheik, who said “Roddy Piper. I love you forever. God bless you Bubba” and multi-time World Champion Chris Jericho Tweeted, “Sorry to hear of the passing of my friend and Wrestlemania rival #RoddyPiper. One of the greatest who ever lived, but more importantly a legit sweet family man with a good heart”. Former WWE Divas Champion Paige called Piper a “legend” and Tweeted a picture of a broken heart, an image which reflected the feelings of many a wrestler and wrestling fan.

Roddy’s son, Colt, said that his father was his “best friend” and a “great man” saying that he would miss him forever and “always try to be the man he raised me to be”.

Rowdy Roddy Piper lived a life littered with accomplishments. Not many of us will ever be declared as legendary by our peers and fewer still will be able to stack 30+ Championship reigns anywhere on our resume, but those weren’t the man’s proudest achievements. Piper had been married to his wife, Kitty, since 1982 and is survived by her and the four children they lovingly raised together. My thoughts are with them, as well as everyone else who knew, worked with, or simply enjoyed to watch the late, great man work his magic in front of a capacity crowd. R.I.P Roddy.

Life On Mars? Scientists Find Liquid Water On The Red Planet

Unless you happen to be a natural history buff or a science nerd, the word extremophile probably won’t mean much to you. However, once the world’s public has a chance to fully absorb the implications of a discovery made this month, I can pretty much guarantee it’ll be on everybody’s lips sooner or later.

Basically, an extremophile is an organism that thrives in conditions that are seemingly too extreme to support any kind of life. Last year, for example, scientists confirmed the existence of microorganisms living half a mile below the ice of Antarctica, but that isn’t the weirdest place you can find microbial life. Different types of extremophiles have been observed in places as inhospitable as the bottom of the Pacific Ocean, the driest deserts on Earth, boiling hot springs and even deep sea hydrothermal vents.

This month’s confirmation that liquid water exists on Mars has gotten a lot of people – myself included – wondering if the Martian landscape may include an extremophile, or two (billion, that is). In general, the rule of thumb here on Earth is that water generally supports life. Of course, it’ll be a while before we know for sure if the same holds true on the Red Planet, but the potential implications for such a discovery are literally enormous. It would be final, incontrovertible proof that Humankind is not alone after all and that, somewhere out there, life does indeed exist on other worlds. Just take a second and imagine that.

…But that isn’t to detract from the enormous significance of finally confirming that there is water on Mars, a planet long considered to be dead and devoid of anything even remotely connected with life as we know it.

New data retrieved from a NASA satellite has been used to link the long, dark streaks that appear on Martian slopes with salt deposits. If this is indeed the case, then these salt deposits could allow water to remain in a fluidic state for long enough for it to move around. This is no mean feat, as Mars features average temperatures well below zero and the low atmospheric pressure means that any liquid water would boil instantly. However, it has been theorized that the deposits of salt could change all this, altering the freezing and vaporization points of water and, in the process, allowing for the existence of the life giving liquid.

Long-term observation of the Red Planet corroborates this theory, as the streaks tend to change with the seasons, leading some scientists to link them with trickling water, however this could never be proven, until now.

Luju Ojha, a PhD student at the Georgia Institute of Technology, has used data from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which makes use of an instrument called Crism to determine the chemistry at work on the Martian surface, to make the incredible claim.

By employing the Crism data and looking at four separate locations where the dark streaks regularly appear and disappear during the Martian summer, Mr Ojha was able to prove that these formations are covered with salts, particularly magnesium perchlorate, chlorate and chloride, the exact types of salts that are known to alter the freezing and vaporization points of running water.

So, it is fairly safe to say that we now know that there is water on Mars. The next big question (before we get to the possibility of anything living in it) is, where is it coming from? It has been suggested by some that ice exists at a great depth below the surface and by others that the salts are literally pulling moisture from the atmosphere itself. For now, we just don’t know.

…And now back to the million Dollar question, first put to us by the philosopher David Bowie in 1973, Is there life on Mars?

Interviewed by BBC News, Dr. Joe Michalski, a Mars researcher at London’s Natural History Museum was optimistic, “We know from the study of extremophiles on Earth that life can not only survive, but thrive in conditions that are hyper-arid, very saline or otherwise extreme in comparison to what is habitable to a human. In fact, on Earth, wherever we find water, we find life. That is why the discovery of water on Mars over the last 20 years is so exciting.”

The wonderful, exhilarating reality of this discovery is that, through its profound implication, you may very well see within your lifetime an answer to that most vexing (and famously unanswerable) of questions, are we alone in the universe?

New York Nutter Files Stupidly Large Lawsuit Over Dog Bite, Chinese People And Overpriced Coffee

Anton Purisima, a New Yorker known for filing abnormally large lawsuits over trivial things (even by American standards) and generally for being nuttier than squirrel sh!t, has achieved what is probably his lifetime ambition of filing the world’s largest lawsuit.

Apparently, before he was overcharged for a cup of coffee (oh, the horror!), Purisima was photographed without his permission by Chinese tourists and then got bitten by a dog (nice one, Fido!). For these (ahem) injustices, he is asking for the grand sum of (wait for it) $2,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000, 000,000,000,000 in damages.

Two undecillion Dollars (a two with 36 zeroes after it) is more money than presently exists on the entire planet, of course.

Frankly, we hadn’t seen this many zeroes since the last Conservative party conference…

According to the loony litigator, the dog was rabid (we can only hope) and it bit his middle finger. The funniest thing about this case, then, is that every time Mr. Purisima is asked to present his evidence, he will likely be found in contempt of court.

Defendants named in the suit include the Au Bon Pan store (whose La Guardia airport outlet apparently sells overly expensive coffee), The New York Transit Authority and Hoboken University Medical Center (who may, or may not, have botched some sort of experimental brain surgery upon Purisima. Admittedly, that’s guesswork on my part, but it would certainly answer a lot of questions…)

I mean, who goes to an airport for cheap coffee!? If American airports are anything like their British counterparts, you’d have to take out a second mortgage on your home just to afford a ham and cheese sandwich…

Apparently, his pain and additional damages “cannot be repaired by money”, which seems especially odd considering he is asking for so much of it, really. That’s a bit like saying that hunger can’t be cured by food, whilst queuing up in a McDonalds…

Purisima’s previous activities include attempting to sue The People’s Republic of China (no, really), as well as several major American banking chains.

Purisima filed his (hand written) lawsuit to a federal court in April and is (somewhat unsurprisingly) representing himself. Reports do not say if he was wearing a tutu and honey-glazing his own nipples at the time, but it seems likely.