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      40分钟前 锌刻度最新5G来了,金立酷派HTC都想“复活”

图片来源@全景网

图片来源@全景网

文|锌刻度,作者|毛建明,编辑|许伟

 

怎一个惨字了得。

9月18日,“卷土重来”的金立手机,正式复出推出K3开启线上预购,售价799元/999元,但截至9月19日晚18时截稿,24小时过去京东旗舰店只有2054人预约购买。而根据第三方数据,2016年,金立手机出货量4500万台,2017年降了一半也还有2600万台。

同样为“复活”努力的还有酷派、HTC、锤子。锤子下嫁字节跳动已算最好结局,锤子科技要迎来新手机的传闻不断;酷派则称将推出26周年版手机;最惨的是全线溃败已多年的HTC——曾推出全球第一款安卓手机G1,力压三星与苹果并驾齐驱的“火腿肠”,最近在俄罗斯推出了十年前风靡的Wildfire 系列E手机,却如同王雪红卸任HTC执行官一样毫无浪花。

“品牌形象已经毁了,信用已经破产了,基本是白扔钱。”一位市场观察人士说,整个手机行业不景气,出货量也在下滑,手机向几个大品牌高度集中,金立酷派们的复活之路,依然前路艰难,看上去更像是垂死挣扎。

不甘心的二股东

金立“死亡”故事,此前已曾被反复提及:这家“中华酷联”(中兴、华为、联想、酷派)时代的一大巨头,曾获得“中国驰名商标”,合作网点超过10万个,进入8个国家运营商网络;在明星刘涛和薛之谦的代言下,2016年手机出货量达4500万台。

到了2017年,因欠供应商欧菲科技6亿元,债务危机爆发。此后,董事长巨额赌博、公司破产、资产变卖、专利拍卖等剧变像多米诺骨牌一样接踵而至。金立被迫在2018年年底选择破产重组却不顺利,截至目前各债权人都只能向法院申请清算并等待结果。

不过,金立显然并不甘心就这样死亡。9月2日,金立官方微信发布一篇宣传文章,详细介绍了即将推出的新款手机“M11/M11S”基本性能。9月5日,金立官方微博称机型“现已全国同步上市,详情请咨询各地金立经销商、合作卖场、门店。”

在多家媒体报道中,金立14位股东之一、前任董事长刘立荣老乡卢光辉,被视为金立复活操盘手——工商资料显示,卢光辉在金立的持股比例为20.50%,位列第二大股东。腾讯新闻《一线》此前报道称,卢光辉已拿到品牌授权,而“投中网”则称,围绕卢光辉获得品牌授权一事,仍有谜团等待揭晓。

不管卢光辉是否已得到授权,但金立看上去已经走上了复活之路。与它同样选择的还有当年齐名的酷派——9月16日,酷派官方微博突然发布消息,称将要在今年酷派成立26周年之际,发布一款26周年珍藏版手机。

酷派曾是全球第一个推出“双卡双待”手机厂商,还是国内第一款售出商用4G手机的厂商。2012年至2014年,多个市场统计数据显示,酷派彼时是中国智能手机出货量增速最快的手机厂商。

接下来,就是收入和销量雪崩。2015年酷派虽与360和乐视都达成了合作,可颓势没有发生任何变化:2016至2018年,酷派年营业收入为79.69亿港元、33.78亿港元、12.77亿港元,业绩连续4年遭到腰斩,股票也在2017年底停牌,市场上几乎看不到任何酷派的手机专卖店。

不过,和金立一样,想要复活酷派手机的,并不是今年1月入主成为CEO的陈家俊,27岁的陈家俊,是地产开发商京基集团创始人陈华的“二公子”,也是目前酷派最大股东(持股17.83%)威日创投有限公司的完全持有人。而是多轮股权变更后,目前持股10.95%的二股东,这个二股东未披露名称,企查查等也无法查询,其身份至今颇为神秘,但业界据称自酷派破产重组以后,二股东一直没有放弃想要复活,才有了酷派重新发布新机的消息。

试图用5G涅槃重生

在金立和酷派高调宣布“复活”之际,曾经远超这两家重量级的HTC,也迎来自己的复活方式:除了最近在俄罗斯推出了十年前风靡的Wildfire 系列E手机,创始人王雪红还卸任CEO职位,将电信巨头Orange前高管伊夫·迈特雷(Yves Maitre)任命为新首席执行官。

风靡一时的HTC

HTC作为安卓阵营曾经的领头羊,一度与苹果并驾齐驱、将三星逼到墙角,但一系列的自行作死行为,比如旷日持久的苹果专利战、机海战术、组织管理差错、高管腐败、忽视大陆市场、延迟上市、配置缺陷等等,最终让它快速衰败,从2011年的2200亿元人民币,下滑到2018年的62亿元人民币,已不及巅峰期的1/30。

在大陆手机市场,HTC被官方宣布“暂时死亡”是在今年5月,当时官微发文称,出于对HTC中国长期经营策略的考量,将暂时关闭HTC手机京东旗舰店和天猫旗舰店。此举标志着HTC在手机领域的失败。

在金立、酷派、HTC大溃败这几年,中国智能手机市场已经是另一番模样,中国信通院数据显示,2019年上半年,国内手机市场出货量1.86亿部,同比下降5.1%。

手机市场下滑趋势并不仅仅在中国市场,且已经维持了较长的一段时间。同时,市场份额向一线品牌集中的趋势越发明显。那么,HTC、金立、酷派为何还不甘心在手机市场的沉沦?

最大的原因来自5G。

当5G浪潮汹涌来袭,各大厂商纷纷瞄准5G带来的重大机遇,投入重金研发5G智能手机及相关服务,进入2019年下半年,各大手机厂商旗下5G终端产品的发布速度明显加快:中兴、华为、三星、小米、vivo等品牌的5G手机也将于9月起陆续上市。业内人士预计,今年国内市场将迎来超过20款5G手机,产品出货量有望突破500万台。

金立、酷派等等也是如此,希望用5G来完成翻身——从摩托罗拉、诺基亚、黑莓到三星、苹果,从“中华酷联”到“华米ov”,每一次新的通讯标准,都会带来手机市场的格局变换,万一5G也能让自己涅槃重生呢?

因此今年7月底,陈家俊就在酷派复牌当天发布的内部信中称,将集中研发与营销力量,尽快发力5G市场。

更早之前,酷派还称将在印度推出旗下首款5G智能手机,酷派表示这款手机也将会是印度市场的第一款5G手机,该机将在印度5G基础设施准备就绪之后第一时间推出,不过这个时间目前还不能确定。

金立的脚步则更快一些,已公布的M11和M11S都是5G手机,借5G东风复活涅槃之心昭然若揭。

不仅是手机行业,5G就像一粒大补丸,不仅让各行各业红眼拼命进入,而且也让不少行业开始回春,比如VR行业——关于VR行业的大额融资事件就一个接一个发生,在2019年上半年,全球VR/AR行业总融资案例达80笔,总融资金额达124.69亿元,同比上升133.3%。

目前,5G被认为是VR行业普及甚至爆发的关键,在所有等待5G+VR起跑的人中,HTC显然是最为迫切的一个——实际上,从2015年3月正式和游戏公司Valve合作之后,HTC就将扭转业绩下滑的希望放在了VR身上。手机业务卖身谷歌所得到的11亿美元,也绝大多数都花给了VR。

不过,由于VR行业存在的种种问题,HTC并未能依靠VR翻身,不仅2019年Q2季度财报继续亏损,甚至还传出了VR业务造假的丑闻。因此,既然都说5G是VR的时代,那么HTC没理由不把希望寄托在5G身上。据悉,HTC计划在明年第一季度推出5G手机。

5G其实是一个技术专利竞争时代

对于这些复活厂商的前景,目前业界意见不一。

第一手机界研究院院长孙燕飚就表示,360、努比亚等手机品牌今年出货量都不多,因为第一梯队外的品牌都等待5G机会,金立等此举也是在为5G蓄势,等明年5G换机潮真正来临,通过运营商销售可能还会有一定的生存空间。

相比HTC和金立,酷派在绑定运营商上可谓熟门熟路——在酷派辉煌的那个年代,深度“绑定”运营商,让酷派手机背靠大树好乘凉,十年一路高歌。后来国内运营商补贴下降,酷派业界下滑严重后转战美国市场,重点也是在跟运营商的合作上。“因为美国手机市场是运营商主导的,一般都是签约套餐配手机,这点可能比较符合酷派的胃口”。

但问题是,现在的手机市场和消费者喜好早已不是几年前,运营商绑定模式早已被互联网运作模式所取代——小米、华为这些互联网基因品牌的强势崛起,就是最好的证明。

从产品本身来看,金立、酷派用来复活的产品定位千元低端机,并无多大亮点。随着华为、荣耀、小米等在内的手机厂商,均频繁发布千元手机产品,酷派和金立的“复活”手机,从产品上来看毫无竞争力。

当然更重要的是,5G其实是一个技术专利竞争时代酷派、金立、HTC并不掌握核心技术和研发,尤其是网络和基站技术,没有自己核心的芯片。HTC当年衰败的开始,就是因为苹果长达两年的技术专利诉讼,但最新在俄罗斯推出的WildfireE系列新品手机,搭载的还是一颗国产自研芯片——紫光展锐虎贲SC9863A八核处理器。

在美国市场以低端手机面目出现的酷派,由于没有核心技术,受制于手机OEM生产方式,其实获得的销售收入很有限,一旦酷派加入5G手机竞争,在美国市场是否会像中兴、华为受到限制,恐怕也是个未知数。

实际上,这并不是手机厂商第一次试图复活。从2017年起,黑莓、夏普、诺基亚等老牌手机厂商纷纷回归,除了诺基亚在最初一年时间内表现有些亮眼之外,其他品牌都未掀起多少浪花。不过,即便是诺基亚,它也至今无法回到过去的巅峰,只能依靠情怀获得部分消费者的青睐。

而对于HTC、金立、酷派而言,又有多少品牌情怀可以依靠呢?

金立现在的市场表现,已经给出了最好的答案。多位金立公司中小供应商就表示,希望金立能够止损,不希望金立有任何动作,与金立也没有继续合作的意愿。在他们看来,金立的复出“100%是失败的,竞争那么厉害,手机增长速度下行,信用破产的公司还能起死回生?”

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5年前 China To Fund Iran Development Projects With $20 Billion In Sanction-Barred Oil Money: Report

TEHRAN, Iran -- TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — A report by an Iranian media website says China has agreed to finance $20 billion in development projects in Iran using oil money not transferred to the Islamic Republic because of international sanctions.

The tasnimnews website published a report Saturday quoting prominent lawmaker Hasan Sobhaninia saying the deal was reached during talks between Iran's parliamentary speaker Ali Larijani and Chinese leaders. Larijani visited China this week and Sobhaninia accompanied the speaker. Iran government spokesman Mohammad Bagher Nowbakht said last week that some $22 billion dollars of Iranian oil money is stuck in China because of sanctions.

The U.S. and its allies have imposed oil and banking sanctions against Iran over its disputed nuclear program. Iran frequently uses barter arrangements because of the sanctions.

China is Iran's top crude oil importer.

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5年前 Pussy Riot's Nadezhda Tolokonnikova Sent To New Prison After Hunger Strike

MOSCOW -- MOSCOW (AP) — The Interfax news agency cites Russia's prison service as saying Pussy Riot member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova is being sent to a new penal colony.

The report Saturday comes after complaints by her husband that there had been no contact with Tolokonnikova in recent days. The Federal Penitentiary Service said Tolokonnikova was being sent to a new prison and that in accordance with regulations her family would be informed within 10 days of arrival, Interfax said. Service officials could not be reached for comment by The Associated Press.

Tolokonnikova is serving two years following the band's politically provocative performance in Moscow's main Orthodox cathedral in 2012.

She went on hunger strike to protest prison conditions in September and was hospitalized. The prison service said in mid-October that she would be moved.

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5年前 Headscarf in Turkish Parliament Raises the Expactations of Further Reform in a Much Wider Scale

Against the expectations otherwise, it happened without much fuss. When four female deputies of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) walked on Thursday, October 31, into the the grand hall of General Assembly of Parliament in Ankara, they knew they were being part of a controversial history. All four were wearing headscarf, which they decided to do after their pilgrimage (hajj) to Mekka.

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Their entry into the hall, 5 minutes before the opening of the ordinary session was a critical moment. A similar move 14 years ago, when a young deputy of Virtue Party (FP), Merve Kavakçı, tried to take the oath at the same venue with a headscarf, it led to tumult. Following intense protest, hate campaign and a military pressure, she was chased out, banned from politics, stripped from her Turkish citizenship. It was a primary reason Virtue Party was shut by the Constitutional Court two years later.

This time it was different. Soon after Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced a 'Democracy Package' -- which included a liberation of headscarf in public institutions, except for judges and prosecutors -- it was a question of when, and not if, the de-facto ban of headscarf in the house of the elected would be challenged. Given the 'retreat' of the harshest adversary of the headsscarf reform, the military, the time seemed ripe for the AKP to do it.

For the conservative, pious majority it is a landmark step. But for the segments that continue to be suspicious of the AKP's agenda it is a worrisome one, perceived by some as another sign of creep ingIslamisation.

Nevertheless, it is a taboo-breaking moment in modern Turkish history. A threshold has been passed on the path toward civilian rule, and diversity -- as many reformists hope -- though it still is a forked one.

What underlines the significance of the ground being broken has to do with the specifics of women's rights, society's struggle for freedom and, also, the role of the religion in politics in Turkey. Women gained the right to vote and be voted already in 1934, and 17 female deputies entered Parliament already in 1935 -- long time before some European countries had granted equality to them.

Certainly, none of them wore headscarf, neither in Parliament nor in public institutions. It has remained banned until recently, despite some attempts by late Turgut Özal, who served as prime minister and president during the 1980's, and severely guarded by the judiciary, which has served as the tough protector of Kemalism's ultra-secular values.

The move therefore delivers a new blow to its prohibitive approach, seen by large swaths of society as the mother of all problems Turkey is struggling with over decades. It is also a product of the decade-long transformation of the society, normalization of politics, in which conservatism gains ground.

Yet, it comes on a background of growing polarization, and rapid loss of patience for an all-encompassing, democratic constitution which, many expect, will grant equal rights and guarantee a protection of all diversity.

Freedom for the headscarf in public without anymore hassle, historic as it may be, therefore exposed what needs to be accomplished, rather than what has been done.

The main question being asked in the immediate aftermath is inevitably on a new watershed Turkey has come to: will the reforms, so far meeting the needs of the large Sunni segment be expanded onto the others or not?

In other words, is the headscarf reform a part of the democratization or Islamisation?

In a speech on Friday, Erdoğan sought to assure the crowds. 'Both those who cover their heads and those who do not are the citizens of this country, masters of this republic, own equal freedom and rights,' he said. 'To prefer one for another is opposed to the notion of justice and equality.'

His words may not disperse the entrenched suspicion among the segments -- secular urban, less pious or non-pious women, Alevis, Kurds, non-believers etc -- unless backed by the deeds.

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Skepticism was already voiced by the female deputies of the opposition at the historic session. Pervin Buldan, MP of the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), praising the reform, said: 'But, freedom can not be limited to headscarf only. Bans are not only about it. Language, creed, culture remains banned, and we all have to build a Turkey where no ban applies, where we need to live in freedom.'

'Of course I have immense anxiety about the future of secularism here', said Şafak Pavey, a disabled deputy (with a prostaethic leg) of the Republican People's Party (CHP).

But my concern is not about symbols squeezed in between a lipstick and headscarf. I am frightened by the mentality which asks for an edict , by the (exclusively Sunni) Directorate of Religious Affairs about a permission to open an Alevi shrine in Parliament. I fear, namely, a mentality that subordinates a creed's right to worship to another's permission. Before I took the floor, I looked through speeches by thedeputies wearing headscarf, and I saw no word in there about others' freedoms. I could not see a similar sensitivity as they show to their belief in minority schools, Alevi shrines or Khalki Orthodox Seminary (which is closed, yb). I can only conclude that our legend of peaceful existence has collapsed.


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Such opposition reactions, a blend of gentle warnings and bitter remarks, reflect the way the debate intensifying on lifestyles, cultural divides and majoritarianism in a country, observed carefully in and beyond its region.

So far it has been mainly the Sunnis who have had gains out of the AKP's latest 'Democracy Package'. Will the others have to wait? For how long? What will be the govrenment's priorities?

These and many other questions now await answers.

But, no matter what, a problematic chapter in Turkey's human rights issues has now been closed -- for good.

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5年前 Sunday's Solar Eclipse To Be Rare, Dramatic 'Hybrid' Event

A slice of eastern North America will undergo a weird and dramatic event early Sunday (Nov. 3) morning: a partial eclipse of the sun.

For most North American observers, the partial eclipse will coincide with sunrise. But within a very narrow corridor that extends for 8,345 miles (13,430 kilometers) across the planet, the disks of the sun and the moon will appear to exactly coincide, providing an example of the most unusual type of eclipse: a "hybrid" or "annular-total eclipse."

During annular solar eclipse, the sun looks like a "ring of fire," while the moon and sun line up perfectly during a total eclipse. Throughout a hybrid eclipse, however, the celestial sight transitions from annular to total. [Photos: Nov. 3 Hybrid Solar Eclipse Visibility Maps & Images]



sunday solar eclipse
This overview map of the Nov. 3, 2013 annular and total solar eclipse, a hybrid solar eclipse, shows the path of the event. Cartographer Michael Zeiler of Eclipse-Maps.com created this map.

If you don't have a chance to see the eclipse from your part of the world, you can watch the cosmic rarity live on SPACE.com courtesy of the online community observatory Slooh.com. The eclipse event begins at 6:45 a.m. EST (1515 GMT) and will run throughout the entirety of the eclipse.



A Rare Occurrence

During the 21st century approximately 4.9 percent of all central solar eclipses — those eclipses where the moon crosses directly in front of the disk of the sun — fall into the hybrid classification.

In most cases, an annular-total eclipse starts as an annular, or "ring of fire" eclipse, because the tip of the moon's dark shadow cone — the umbra — falls just short of making contact with the Earth; so the moon appears slightly smaller than the sun producing the same effect as placing a penny atop a nickel leaving a ring of sunlight shining around the moon's edge.

Then the solar eclipse transitions to total, because the roundness of the Earth reaches up and intercepts the shadow tip near the middle of the path, then finally it reverts back to annular toward the end of the path.

However, as pointed out by the renowned Belgian eclipse calculator, Jean Meeus, the hybrid eclipse of Nov. 3 will be a special case: here the eclipse starts out as annular, then after only 15-seconds it will transition to a total eclipse, and then it remains total up to the very end of the eclipse path. The last time this happened was on Nov. 20, 1854 and the next such case after 2013 will occur on Oct. 17, 2172.



Diamond necklace, then totality

At the very beginning of this eclipse track, the tip of the umbra is literally scratching at the surface of the Earth; sitting on the borderline between annular and total it is, for all intents and purposes, a total eclipse with zero duration or ever-so-slightly more after the first 15-seconds of its interaction with our planet. [Rare Hybrid Solar Eclipse Visible This November (Video)]

And yet, whether the umbra touches the Earth's surface at the very beginning of the eclipse track – or barely misses — is somewhat irrelevant. Because the silhouette of the moon is not a perfect circle, but rather slightly prickly with mountains, so just before the transition from annular to total, the eclipse will become something neither annular nor total: for a few precious seconds it will be a broken annular.

As lunar mountains protrude onto the hairline-thin ring of the sun, it will be seen not as an unbroken ring but an irregular, changing, sparkling sequence of arcs, beads and diamonds very briefly encircling the moon: a "diamond necklace" effect!

One might witness this highly unusual sight from a particular spot in the Atlantic Ocean — probably measuring less than a mile or two in width — some 405 miles (650 km) southwest of Bermuda. At least one group of ardent eclipse watchers from Germany hope to fly above any possible ocean cloudiness to experience this event.



Sweeping rapidly southeast, the eclipse will rapidly transition to a total eclipse; the totality path will slowly widen and the duration of totality will gradually increase, although the shadow will remain out over open ocean water for 165 minutes before finally making its first landfall at Gabon. Along the way, the point of greatest eclipse is reached at 12:46:28 UT over the tropical eastern Atlantic, at a point 204 miles (328 km) southwest of Monrovia, Liberia. At maximum at mid-path, totality lasts 1 minute 39.6 seconds and the path is 36 miles (57.5 km) wide. [Solar Eclipses: An Observer's Guide (Infographic)]

The umbra's first landfall comes at 13:50:21 UT at the remote Wonga-Wongue Presidential Reserve, a tract of rain forest on the coast of the central African nation of Gabon. Here, on the center line, the total eclipse will last 1 min 08 sec, with the sun standing 47 degrees high in the southwest sky.



During the next 37 minutes, the path continues out across equatorial Africa as its width and central duration again dwindle. Sliding east-northeast, it will cut through six more African nations. The first two are The Congo and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (known between 1971 and 1997 as the Republic of Zaire).

The path then cuts across a small slice of sparsely populated northern Uganda and northern Kenya and as it is nearing its end, crosses over into southern Ethiopia. Finally, just before the umbra leaves the Earth at sunset over west-central Somalia at 14:27 UT, an exceedingly short total phase predicted to last for less than a second! As was the case at the sunrise part of the path three hours and 22 minutes earlier, fortuitous observers who might have access to a clear horizon toward the west-southwest might witness the setting sun again taking on the appearance of "a diamond tiara."



Detail on the Partial Eclipse

As was noted earlier, only a slice of eastern North America will see a partial solar eclipse, while most of the rest of the continent will see nothing of this event. If you have an atlas, draw a line starting from a point at Sudbury, Ontario south to Port St. Joe, Florida. All places to the left (or west) of this line will not have any view of the eclipse. Meanwhile, those localities to the right (or east) of the line will be able to see at least a part of this eclipse at sunrise, although for those places in the immediate vicinity of this line, the moon's "bite" out of the lower edge of the sun will be tantalizingly small.

For example, while the eclipse will not be visible from Detroit, only about 100 miles to the southeast at Cleveland, the edge of the moon's dark silhouette will be evident on the sun's lower limb as it rises above the east-southeast horizon at 7 a.m. EST (1100 GMT); the moon will obscure only about 15 percent of the sun's diameter, or just about 7 percent of the total disk area of the sun. The "eclipse" -- if we can charitably call it that – will come to an end just nine minutes later. [How to Safely Photograph the Sun (A Photo Guide)]

As one heads farther east, the eclipse will last longer and this slight dent will evolve into a more noticeable scallop out of the sun's lower rim. From Pittsburgh, the eclipse will last 29 minutes from the time of local sunrise (6:51 a.m. EST), with about 29 percent of the sun's diameter darkened when it first emerges from above the horizon.

From New England, Sunday's eclipse will mark the end of a nearly 13-year long solar eclipse drought; the last time a solar eclipse was visible from this part of the U.S. was on Christmas Day in the year 2000. From Boston, weather permitting, a most unusual sunrise will occur at 6:22 a.m. EST, with nearly 63 percent of the sun's diameter hidden behind the moon; the sun's lower right portion will be covered. Fifty two minutes later, the last trace of the moon will disappear at the bottom of the solar disk.

From Hamilton, Bermuda, nearly 90 percent of the sun's diameter will be eclipsed, maximum eclipse coming at 7:07 a.m. AST. San Juan, Puerto Rico will see 69 percent coverage at 7:04 a.m. AST.

Full prediction details for many cities are available through NASA.

This information, courtesy of NASA astronomer, Fred Espenak, is given in Universal Time. The sun's altitude and azimuth, the eclipse magnitude (fraction of the sun's diameter occulted by the Moon), and obscuration (fraction of the sun's area occulted by the Moon) are all given for the instant of maximum eclipse.

Remember that Daylight Saving Time ends at 2 a.m. on Sunday morning! You must set your clocks back one hour to return to standard time. If you fail to do this, you'll be too early by one hour for viewing the eclipse.

A Google map shows the path of the eclipse and you can zoom into it and click at any location to see your local circumstances.

Be Careful!

Once again it needs repeating: to look at the sun without proper eye protection is dangerous.

If you live in the zone where it will be visible, no doubt early on Sunday morning the eclipse will top the local news, followed of course by the usual dire warnings to the public not to risk blindness by carelessly looking at it. This has given most people the idea that eclipses are dangerous. Not so. It's the sun that's dangerous — all the time. Ordinarily, we have no reason to gaze at it. An eclipse gives us a reason, but we shouldn't.

There are some safe ways, however . . .

The only recommended safe filters – those known to block invisible but damaging infrared and ultraviolet rays – are a rectangular arc welder's glass that dims the sun comfortably in visual light (shade #14 for a normal bright sun) or a metalized filter such as Mylar made specifically for sun viewing. On a telescope, binoculars, or camera, the filter must be attached securely over the front of the instrument, never behind the eyepiece. [How to Observe the Solar Eclipse Safely (Infographic)]

The safest way to watch is by means of projecting the sun's image onto a white sheet of paper or cardboard. Poke a small hole in an index card with a pencil point and hold a second card two or three feet behind it. The projected image will undergo all the phases of the eclipse. A large hole makes the image bright, but fuzzy; a smaller hole makes it dim but sharp. You can also enclose this setup in a box to keep out as much daylight as possible. For a nice, sharp image some have used a tiny pinhole pierced in aluminum foil.

A leafy tree can form a profusion of natural pinhole projectors. Watch the dappled ground in the shadow of a tree for images depicting the eclipsed sun instead of the usual round disks.

Better yet, make use of a "pinhole mirror" by covering a pocket mirror with a piece of paper that has a ¼-inch hole punched in it, and then reflect a spot of sunlight onto a nearby wall. The image will be one inch across for every 9 feet from the mirror. Of course, don't let anyone look at the sun in the mirror!

Of course, telescopes and binoculars can project a much larger, sharper and brighter image of the sun which can also show any sunspot groups that may be present. Just be sure no one looks at the sun through the instrument!

Good Luck and safe viewing to all who are in the eclipse zone … and clear skies!

Editor's note: If you snap an amazing photo of Sunday's solar eclipse or any other celestial sight that you'd like to share for a possible story or image gallery, please contact managing editor Tariq Malik at spacephotos@space.com.

Joe Rao serves as an instructor and guest lecturer at New York's Hayden Planetarium. He writes about astronomy for Natural History magazine, the Farmer's Almanac and other publications, and he is also an on-camera meteorologist for News 12 Westchester, N.Y.



Copyright 2013 SPACE.com, a TechMediaNetwork company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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5年前 Reports: Barclays Bank Suspends 6 In Currency Rigging Probe

LONDON — LONDON (AP) — The BBC, the Financial Times and other outlets say Barclays bank has suspended six traders amid an investigation into whether international currency markets were rigged.

Barclays, Britain's second-largest bank, revealed on Wednesday that it was the subject of an investigation by regulators in Britain and elsewhere over "possible attempts to manipulate certain benchmark currency exchange rates." The bank said it was cooperating with the investigation.

Barclays spokeswoman Aurelie Leonard declined to comment Saturday on reports that the bank had suspended traders.

Other banks including JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup and Switzerland's UBS have also said they are being investigated over currency trading.

The investigation is the latest bad news for Barclays, which overhauled its top management after being fined $453 million for manipulating a key global interest rate and other wrongdoing.

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5年前 Crib, Lap or Back? What Sleeping (and Awake) Babies Tell Us About How Culture Matters

Alison Gopnik and her fellow developmental psychologists have devised remarkably clever experiments to measure the hidden intellectual capacities of healthy babies. Tricking babies into thinking that some experimenters prefer goldfish crackers while others prefer broccoli, for example, yields 18-month-olds who offer each researcher whichever food the researcher appeared to prefer. So much for assuming that empathy only develops after college. Findings such as these amaze skeptics who view intelligence as a monopoly of adults. Many new parents nowadays find comfort in the newfound brilliance that their tiny, non-verbal children may demonstrate in laboratory settings. But what implications do these lab findings hold for the day-to-day experiences of babies and those who care for them? How are the biological capacities of infants expressed, manipulated, and interpreted by parents and other caretakers around the world?



Anthropology offers answers. Studying contexts ranging from Pygmy hunter-gatherers to middle-class families in Los Angeles, anthropologists are charting new frontiers of knowledge concerning the many worlds of babies and those who care for them. Some of the new findings even expand the boundaries of the biological framework on which psychologists may rely.



Consider the simple task of sitting. Child development textbooks, and the hundreds of parenting books that develop from them, inform us that at six months, most healthy infants sit up on their own, without keeling over. But in sub-Saharan Africa, children routinely sit up unassisted at four months. A two-month difference may not sound like much to an adult. But for a six-month-old, that's a third of a lifetime.



What accounts for the significant difference? Across the African continent, many babies spend most of their daytime hours (whether awake or asleep) wrapped around the back of an older person. (This might be their mother, other adults, or older children.) Attached in a quasi-sitting position -- legs wrapped around the carrier's waist -- the muscles necessary to sit up independently develop earlier in these children than they do in babies who spend their daytime hours either lying prone in a crib or playpen, or semi-reclining in an infant seat. In fact, caregivers in many African communities may intentionally work to develop early sitting muscles in their infants. In Baganda communities in Uganda, for example, adults routinely seat one- to three-month-olds on their laps, in effect training them to sit independently. In these fiercely social communities where life is lived outdoors, adults consider it essential that children sit up as early as possible -- to communicate actively with those around them.



Elsewhere, spiritual factors may determine how babies are held. What does religion have to do with holding a baby? In Bali, everything. The mainstream religious tradition on this Indonesian island -- a mixture of Hinduism and indigenous, local practice -- classifies babies as reincarnated ancestors, and thus divine gifts from the gods for the first three to seven months of their lives (depending on the family's rank). With this spiritual profile, adults hold babies up high, as befitting other deities; certainly, babies are never put on the ground or floor -- a space deemed too profane for small gods. The day-to-day mandate for caretaking could not be more clear.



2013-10-31-PhotoMAkweCarriesSassandraonBack1.jpg
In this village in Côte d'Ivoire, a Beng baby learns to sit from an early age by being wrapped around the waist of her mother or another person. The muscles necessary to train her body to remain upright while sitting develop earlier than they do in her Western counterparts who remain prone or semi-reclining during most of their daytime hours. (Photo: Alma Gottlieb)

Even sleeping, that seemingly most biological of body habits, has hidden social foundations based in cultural values. What does "sleep like a baby" actually mean? Quite a lot of different lessons, it turns out -- depending on where in the world the baby is sleeping.



"Shhhh -- baby sleeping" is a common sign on the doors of many babies' rooms across middle-class, Euro-America. The goal here is to allow a baby to take a good, long nap -- freeing the mother to rest, or get a little work done; training the baby to become independent early; accustoming the baby to the family's schedule; and training the child's young body into a life organized by the clock. In these households, the presumed dangers of "co-sleeping" evoke culturally scary risks ranging from biological (rolling over and smothering the infant) to sociological (promoting "dependence").



2013-10-31-PhotoPl10GirlHelpsPutBabyonBack.jpeg
This Beng baby learns to sit up even while attached to a girl so young, she needs help securing the baby to her back. (Photo: Alma Gottlieb)

Yet in parts of the world ranging from Japan and India to nearly all of Africa, parents routinely come to the opposite conclusion. Aiming to promote "interdependence" rather than "independence," co-sleeping families (which may include mothers, fathers, grandmothers, and/or older siblings at various points of the life cycle) extol the virtues of small children snuggling up with larger bodies to sleep. They may not be aware of the latest research by biological anthropologist James McKenna on the health advantages of co-sleeping for infants, but they intuitively grasp the emotional and social advantages.



"Use your intuition," many well-wishers advise new parents. "Use your common sense," my own mother urged me when I begged for advice about how to calm my frequently-bawling first child. But anthropologists now tell us that when it comes to child-rearing, "common sense" may be far from common.

Alma Gottlieb is a member of the American Anthropological Association.

Ideas are not set in stone. When exposed to thoughtful people, they morph and adapt into their most potent form. TEDWeekends will highlight some of today's most intriguing ideas and allow them to develop in real time through your voice! Tweet #TEDWeekends to share your perspective or email tedweekends@huffingtonpost.com to learn about future weekend's ideas to contribute as a writer.

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5年前 Milky PinUps: AurumLight Studio Splashes Milk On Models, We Begin Search For Cookies (PHOTOS)

We'll never cry over spilt milk again.

AurumLight Studio, a London-based conceptual photography business, is making a splash with its fresh take on old pin-up photos. Pouring milk on models sounds easy -- but photographer Jaroslav Wieczorkiewicz captures the liquid in such a way that it looks like a perfectly crafted dress.

PHOTO (More below):
milk models

Plenty of his galleries are more serious in nature, but the former architect thought he'd have some fun with these ladies, who he's putting in a calendar -- thankfully -- coming soon.

"This time I thought it will be cool to approach the liquid theme in a more relaxed and funny way," Wieczorkiewicz writes on his blog. "So we threw some colors into the mix and came up with a personal Milky PinUp tribute to my favorite pin-up style artists."

You can learn how to Milky PinUp, too. He'll be touring in the United States in 2014 to teach his wholesome craft. In the meantime, check out his Facebook page, his high-resolution shots, and the photos below.

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5年前 U.S. Drone Strike In Pakistan Kills This Family's Grandmother (VIDEO)

After a drone strike killed his mother and injured his kids, Rafiq ur Rehman came to the U.S. from Pakistan to testify before Congress on the civilian casualties of these strikes. The Rehmans and filmmaker Robert Greenwald joined HuffPost Live's Alyona Minkovski to tell their story.

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5年前 U.S. Drone Strike In Pakistan Kills This Family's Grandmother

After a drone strike killed his mother and injured his kids, Rafiq ur Rehman came to the U.S. from Pakistan to testify before Congress on the civilian casualties of these strikes. The Rehmans and filmmaker Robert Greenwald joined HuffPost Live's Alyona Minkovski to tell their story.

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5年前 Honduras' Police Chief Denies Accusations Of Death Squads, Social Cleansing Campaign

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras -- TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras (AP) — In a capital accustomed to daily bloodshed, the man in charge of law enforcement is as feared as the criminals. Few dare speak his name above a whisper.

Five-star Gen. Juan Carlos Bonilla was accused a decade ago of running death squads and today oversees a department suspected of beating, killing and "disappearing" its detainees. He is the top cop in the country that serves as a way station for most South American cocaine bound for the United States and beyond. Bonilla is also the U.S. government's go-to man in Honduras for the war on drug trafficking.

Though the State Department officially keeps the 49-year-old chief at arm's length over his dubious past, Bonilla embraces the U.S. government as his "best ally and support." If the U.S. wants to fight drug trafficking in Honduras, it has to work with Bonilla.

"I am the director general, and I don't delegate that responsibility to anyone," Bonilla said during his first interview with a reporter since 2011.

In a wide-ranging conversation with The Associated Press that started over lunch at his favorite Tegucigalpa restaurant and ended after a late dinner at his well-appointed home, Bonilla denied he once led a social cleansing campaign, that his police force is as criminal as those it arrests, or that he is in any way responsible for a rash of gang members who disappeared after being arrested. Two of them later turned up dead on the edge of town.

"I can't be on top of everything. Sometimes things will escape me. I'm human," Bonilla said.

Honduras is a country under siege with one of the world's highest murder rates, where corruption is rampant and the rule of law weak. Its citizens scurry home before dusk in the capital. The sound of automatic gunfire peppers the night, and cities awaken to discarded bodies, the handiwork of street gangs, extortion rackets, drug mafias and, apparently, the police.

By law, Bonilla runs all policing in Honduras, everything from planning operations and directing investigations, to approving travel abroad for training and vehicle repairs. He oversees a troubled force where there is no consistent account of how many officers are on the payroll or how many show up for work, only estimates ranging from 8,000 to 15,000.

The police routinely are accused of civil rights violations. Between March and May, the AP reported at least five cases of alleged gang members missing or killed after being taken into police custody in what critics and human rights advocates call death squads engaged in a wave of social cleansing of criminals. In July, a man died of a burst liver after he was arrested for disorderly conduct and beaten by police, according to a prosecutor's file. In August, a gang member was beaten to death after being arrested for shooting an officer, a crime captured on surveillance tape that went viral on the Internet.

Bonilla said he is aware of the charges and insisted that every complaint is being investigated. Excesses "happen, yes. We investigate them and act," he said. "You cannot use a word like 'death squads,' because there is no chain of command or an order by me, never, under any circumstances, to act illegally."

He defended the institution where "I've spent my whole life. I am loyal to it."

Bonilla is a formidable figure, solidly built at 6 feet, with a shaved head and large nose set in a ruddy face. His voice is like a windstorm rising from the depths of a cavern, his words come slowly at first and then accelerate to a dizzying onslaught.

Throughout the afternoon and evening, Bonilla returned frequently to the support he receives from the U.S. Embassy for police operations. In one case, he ordered a subordinate to track a police commander with possible ties to drug traffickers. "I want to know where he is now. Find their phones and tap them. I will ask the Embassy for help," he said.

The close relationship runs counter to an August 2012 memo issued by the State Department to Congress shortly after Bonilla was named police chief, saying it was "aware of allegations of human rights violations related to Police Chief Juan Carlos Bonilla's service a decade ago."

A 2002 report by the Honduran police department's internal affairs section accused Bonilla of three killings or forced disappearances starting in 1998, when he was a regional police chief. It also linked him to at least 11 other cases. He was tried on one of the charges and acquitted. The others were never fully investigated.

The State Department decided to conduct its own review, meanwhile, and said in the memo that it was "carefully limiting assistance to special Honduran law enforcement units ... not under Bonilla's supervision." In March, Assistant Secretary of State William Brownfield reiterated, "We have no relations with him; we don't give him so much as a dollar or even a cent."

Bonilla said there are no police units beyond his supervision. Fourteen months later, the U.S. investigation has not been completed. U.S. officials say there is no law against talking to Bonilla, and that it is necessary to do so in a country where an estimated 87 percent of all cocaine smuggling flights departing from South America land. Of $30 million in U.S. aid that was held up by the Senate Appropriations Committee because of concerns about human rights, impunity and Bonilla, two-thirds has since been released.

"Our diplomats talk to lots of people because they are in positions of authority, not because they like them," said an aide to Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, who wrote the provisions requiring human rights vetting for U.S. aid. The aide was not authorized to speak on the record. "What matters is not that they talk to him, but what the Honduran police are doing. Are they protecting the people, or are they protecting the drug traffickers? As far as his saying the U.S. is his biggest ally in counterdrug operations, our ally is Honduras, not the chief of police."

The jury is still out on Bonilla's success in fighting drug trafficking. In September, a joint Honduran-U.S operation targeted "Los Cachiros," the cartel that controls an estimated 90 percent of the clandestine runways in the country. U.S. and Honduran officials first touted that Operation Neptune yielded some $500 million in assets, including real estate, a mining company and a zoo. But then the director of Honduras' Office of Seized Property said that 71 bank accounts seized were empty. Corrupt authorities had alerted the traffickers ahead of time, said Director Humberto Palacios Moya, though he did not implicate anyone specifically.

Bonilla says he hails from humble indigenous origins and was forcibly recruited into military service at age 12, where he gained the nickname "El Tigre," or the Tiger. He transferred to the National Police when it was created 1998. Much to the dismay of international human rights groups, he was tapped as police chief in May 2012 after his predecessor was fired, presumably for two high-profile criminal cases involving police. In one, a prominent journalist close to President Porfirio Lobo was assassinated. In the other, civilians were shot dead during a joint Honduran- U.S. anti-drug operation in the remote Moskitia region, where most clandestine cocaine flights from South America land.

Bonilla "was the only top police commander without known links to organized crime," said Arabeska Sanchez, researcher and founder of Honduras' University Institute for Peace and Security who, as a professor at the National Police Academy, taught Bonilla in many classes. "But he still comes under suspicion because it's impossible to know if he was involved in state-sponsored human rights violations that evidently happened very close to him."

Dressed in a crisp, dark blue uniform, Bonilla moves about in an armored car in a city where gunmen travel by motorcycle for a quick kill and getaway. He keeps a loaded M-16 by his seat and says he would not hesitate to use it if attacked.

In private, many Hondurans say they are terrified of Bonilla. In the interview, however, he was unwaveringly gracious, smiling even when answering the most pointed questions. He showed off his library of hundreds of books on drug-trafficking, history and philosophy, underlined or marked with colored Post-it notes. The feared general liberally quotes French social theorist Michel Foucault and Austrian writer Stefan Zweig.

Among his books, Bonilla keeps a leather-bound copy of the indictment against him and says the death squad charges are not only false, but the stigma still haunts him.

"It's very painful as a human being for your family, your children, your children's schoolmates, your father, your friends or a woman you just met to ask you if you are a murderer," he said.

At the end of the day, Bonilla asked his bodyguard to bring him a book from the glove compartment of his car. It was an annotated edition of "The Art of War," by Sun Tzu, a Chinese general who lived 2600 years ago.

He read an underlined paragraph in the introduction: "We live in a culture of simulation, in which nothing is what it seems and the image that reigns has no reference to the real world."

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5年前 Nelson Mandela Movie To Open This Month In South Africa

JOHANNESBURG — JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The producer of a movie about Nelson Mandela says he screened some scenes and showed film images last year to the former South African president, describing him as amused by the elaborate makeup process for the British actor who played him.

Anant Singh, producer of "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom," recalled Saturday that Mandela smiled and said "Is that me?" when he saw a picture of actor Idris Elba as an elderly Mandela. Singh had visited Mandela at his home in Qunu, in South Africa's Eastern Cape province. Mandela, 95, has stayed in a hospital several times since December and remains critically ill at his Johannesburg home.

The film, based on Mandela's autobiography, will be released in South Africa in late November before opening in the U.S. and other markets.

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5年前 Majority Of Americans Want More Checks On NSA Spying

A majority of Americans think that current oversight over data the NSA can collect about Americans is inadequate, and almost half think oversight of the data the NSA collects about foreigners is inadequate, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll.

According to the new poll, 54 percent of Americans think federal courts and rules put in place by Congress do not provide adequate oversight over the phone and Internet data the NSA can collect about Americans, while only 17 percent said that the oversight is adequate.



And respondents were almost as likely to say that oversight of the NSA's data collection is inadequate even for programs targeting foreigners. Forty-eight percent said that oversight is inadequate, and only 20 percent said that it is adequate.



The poll comes after reports in recent weeks that the NSA has collected data on citizens of various U.S. allies, including France and Spain, as well as the revelation that the NSA has in the past tracked several leaders' communications, such as the cell phone of German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

A plurality of Americans -- 47 percent -- said that revelations about the U.S. tracking phone calls of foreigners living in U.S.-allied countries has hurt U.S. standing abroad. But 14 percent said the revelations have helped, and 17 percent said it has neither helped nor hurt. Still, only 43 percent said they had heard a lot about the programs, while 44 percent had heard a little and 13 percent had heard nothing at all.

Although the poll finds relatively few Americans think President Barack Obama directed NSA surveillance programs on either Americans or foreigners, most think he at least knew about them, contrary to claims by some officials that Obama didn't know until recently about the NSA surveillance of heads of state.

Although only 23 percent of respondents said that they believed Obama had directed the programs targeting foreigners, another 45 percent said that he at least knew about them. Only 8 percent said they believed he didn't know.

Similarly, 26 percent said they believed Obama directed surveillance programs aimed at Americans, while another 46 percent said he knew about them and only 5 percent said they believed he didn't know.

The HuffPost/YouGov poll was conducted Oct. 29-30 among 1,000 U.S. adults using a sample selected from YouGov's opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population. Factors considered include age, race, gender, education, employment, income, marital status, number of children, voter registration, time and location of Internet access, interest in politics, religion and church attendance.

The Huffington Post has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov's nationally representative opinion polling.

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5年前 Photos Of The Week: October 26 - November 1

Every week, we bring you some of the most fascinating photos from around the world.

This week, we've got an Italian housing riot, Indian elephants, and Sao Paulo fashion models.

1.
girl pigeons
A girl holds pigeons as she refresh herself at fountain during a warm autumn day in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on 29 October, 2013. (SERGEI SUPINSKY/AFP/Getty Images)

2.
sao paulo models
Models are seen in Sao Paulo's subway on the eve of the 2013 Winter Sao Paulo Fashion Week, the most important fashion event in Latin America on October 27, 2013. (NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)

3.
libya police
Newly graduated Libyan police officers show their skills during their graduation ceremony in Tripoli on October 31, 2013. (MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/Getty Images)

4.
nairobi train crash
Mourners gather after a train rammed into a public service bus in Nairobi October 30, 2013. The accident happened at a crossing point killing at least 12 passengers in the bus. (John Muchucha/AFP/Getty Images)

5.
italy riot
Protesters clash with anti riot-police during a demonstration to ask for affordable housings and against Government's austerity measures on October 31, 2013 in downtown Rome. (FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP/Getty Images)

6.
france pollution
A photo taken on October 31, 2013 in Haubourdin, northern France showssmoke from a factory. (PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images)

7.
ethiopian jewish
Ethiopian Jews take part in the celebrations of the Sigd Festival on October 31, 2013 in Jerusalem, Israel. According to Jewish Ethiopian tradition the Sigd holiday is celebrated annually, marking the biblical union of the Jewish people and God. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)

8.
soldiers malmesbury
Soldiers from 9 Theatre Logistic Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps (9 TLR), wait to be presented medals from the Lord-Lieutenant of Wiltshire, Mrs Sarah Troughton, as they hold an operational medal parade to mark their return from Afghanistan on October 31, 2013 in Malmesbury, England. (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)

9.
india elephant
Indian mahouts transport grass on elephants at the Kaziranga National Park, about 250 kms from Guwahati on October 31, 2013. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

10.
prince felipe
Prince Felipe of Spain (C) attends audiences at El Pardo Palace on October 31, 2013 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Europa Press/Europa Press via Getty Images)

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5年前 The World's Most Scenic Airports

Flying might not be as glamorous or luxurious as it once was, but there are still some things about flying that are... pretty.

So instead of burying your head in your book jockeying for position to get off the plane first upon landing, why don't you actually look out the window and take in the surroundings? At these 11 places, they're bound to be beautiful.

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5年前 Hakimullah Mehsud's Death Confirmed By Pakistani Taliban, Militants Vow Revenge For Drone Killing Of Leader


By Saud Mehsud and Hafiz Wazir

DERA ISMAIL KHAN/WANA, Pakistan, Nov 2 (Reuters) - Pakistani Taliban fighters secretly buried their leader early on Saturday after he was killed by a U.S. drone aircraft and quickly moved to replace him while vowing a wave of suicide bombs in revenge.

The Pakistani government denounced the killing of Hakimullah Mehsud as a U.S bid to derail planned peace talks and some politicians demanded that U.S. military supply lines into Afghanistan be blocked in response.

Mehsud, who had a $5 million U.S. bounty on his head, and three others were killed on Friday in the militant stronghold of Miranshah in northwest Pakistan, Pakistani security officials and militants said.

Mehsud's vehicle was hit after he attended a meeting of Taliban leaders, a Pakistani Taliban fighter said, adding Mehsud's body was "damaged but recognisable". His bodyguard and driver were also killed.

He was secretly buried under cover of darkness in the early hours by a few companions amid fears that his funeral might be attacked by U.S. drones, militants and Pakistani security sources said.

"Every drop of Hakimullah's blood will turn into a suicide bomber," said Azam Tariq, a Pakistani Taliban spokesman.

"America and their friends shouldn't be happy because we will take revenge for our martyr's blood."

Mehsud took over as leader of the al Qaeda-linked Pakistani Taliban in 2009. The group's two previous leaders were killed in attacks by U.S. missile-firing drones.

Taliban commanders voted to replace him with the movement's number two, Khan Said, who is also known as Sajna.

Said is believed to have masterminded an attack on a jail in northwest Pakistan that freed nearly 400 prisoners in 2012 and a big attack on a Pakistani naval base.

But some commanders were unhappy with the choice and wanted more talks, several militants said, indicating divisions within the Pakistani Taliban, an umbrella group of factions allied with the Afghan Taliban and battling the Pakistani state in the hope of imposing Islamist rule.

They have killed thousands of Pakistani civilians and numerous members of the security forces. They claimed the killing of an army general in September.

In Washington, two U.S. officials also confirmed Mehsud's death in a CIA drone strike. A White House spokeswoman said he was not in a position to confirm the report but if true, it would be a serious loss for the Pakistani Taliban.

In 2010, Mehsud appeared in a farewell video with a Jordanian suicide bomber who killed seven CIA employees at a base in Afghanistan.


"ATTACK ON TALKS"

Mehsud was in his mid-30s and had a sharp face framed by a beard and a tangle of long hair, usually flowing from beneath a traditional Afghan hat.

Despite his reputation as an uncompromising militant commander, Pakistan's new government had promised to try to stop the violence through peace talks and it reacted angrily to Mehsud's killing.

"The U.S. has tried to attack the peace talks with this drone but we will not let them fail," Information Minister Pervez Rashid told media, referring to the negotiations, which the Taliban said on Friday had yet to start.

Shah Farman, a spokesman for the government of the northwestern province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, said provincial legislators would pass a resolution on Monday to cut NATO supply lines into landlocked Afghanistan. A main one passes through the nearby Khyber Pass.

The supply lines through U.S. ally Pakistan have been crucial since the latest Afghan war began in 2001 and remain vital as the United States and other Western forces prepare to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of next year.

Residents of Miranshah, the capital of the North Waziristan region on the Afghan border, said Pakistani Taliban fighters were converging on the town and firing furiously at drones buzzing high in the sky.

About eight drones were seen overhead as well as a larger aircraft that seemed to be a aeroplane or a type of drone that residents said they had not seen before.

"We thought it was a C-130 aircraft but it was a special spy plane, bigger in size," resident Farhad Khan said by telephone from Miranshah. "The militants fired from their anti-aircraft guns to hit it but couldn't."

Shops and markets were open in the town. Residents said they were worried about a possible army offensive, but not Taliban reprisals. They expected the militants to launch attacks elsewhere in Pakistan.

"We feel the militants will show their reaction in major cities like they usually do," said resident Assadullah Dawar said.

In May, Mehsud's deputy was killed by drone nearby. Last month, one of his top deputies was captured in Afghanistan. (Additional reporting by Jibran Ahmad in Peshawar; Writing by Katharine Houreld; Editing by Robert Birsel)

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5年前 奔跑中的 Wunderlist 杜会堂

wunderlist-osx-icon

一款待办事项应用值多少钱?

100 万?500 万?1000 万?在 Wunderlist 创始人克里斯蒂纳·雷柏(Christian Reber)眼中,一款待办事项应用可以实现无价。

今年 9 月,德国媒体 Gruender Szene 在 9 月采访雷柏时曾向他发问:Evernote 是否是 Wunderlist 接下来的主要竞争对手。雷柏回答道,尽管 Wunderlist 和 Evernote 存在部分功能重叠,但是它并非 Wunderlist 的直接对手。雷柏希望 Wunderlist 未来能成为 Dropbox、Evernote 和 Wunderlist 的结合体——一个更加宏大的目标。

19 岁时,雷柏只身一人前往柏林学习计算机科学及国际管理,当时他最大的梦想是创建一个能影响全欧洲的世界级技术公司。但和那些辍学创业的硅谷创业者相反,雷柏坚持读完了整个大学,甚至在毕业后担任过多个公司的雇员。直到 2010 年,雷柏才开始创建自己的公司:6Wunderkinder。

“别相信那些中途退学的人都能成为颠覆性的企业家,有很多的反例可以否定这点。”雷柏说,创建一个快速增长型的技术公司是极具挑战性的,创始人必须身兼各项才能。早期的学习经历能帮助创始人结交到未来可能用到的优秀人才,同时可以更好地认清自己。

christian-reber

(Wunderlist 创始人克里斯蒂纳·雷柏。图片来自 Gruender Szene

和大多数创业公司面临的各种困境一样,6Wunderkinder 创建最初曾一度窘迫到只有两名员工。一年之后,公司获得 Atomico 投资的 420 万美元后,情况才有所好转。Atomico 是 Skype 联合创始人尼古拉斯·占斯特姆(Niklas Zennström)创建的私募基金,这位声名显赫的瑞典投资人也是位创业老兵。在投资 6Wunderkinder  之后,占斯特姆一直规劝雷柏要放眼全局,“把 Wunderlist 打造成跨语言、跨国界的产品。影响全世界。”

基于云端的跨平台任务管理工具 Wunderlist 是 6Wunderkinder 最早推出的一款产品。通过 Wunderlist,用户可以制作详细的待办清单,同时可以向好友和同事分享。

发布 Wunderlist 后不久,6Wunderkinder 又推出了 Wunderkit 项目管理套件。这款应用最初被人们认为是企业项目管理工具的后起之秀,但却在用户数不断增加后暴露出越来越多的问题,项目一度陷入困境。雷柏在去年 9 月痛下决心关闭 Wunderkit,同时针对用户的反馈重新设计 Wunderlist。几个月后 6Wunderkinder 推出全新的 Wunderlist 2,再次迎来大量用户。

今年 4 月,一直免费的 Wunderlist 上线了针对企业用户的 Wunderlist Pro 增值服务。使用者只需每月支付 4.99 美元,就可享插入附件、任务分配、在线对话等多项功能。此外,Wunderlist 和 Wunderlist Pro 同时覆盖 iPhone、iPad、Mac、Windows、Android、Kindle 以及网页端,“无缝协作服务”名副其实。

TechCrunch 在不久前透露,6Wunderkinder 即将完成 3000 万美元 B 轮融资,公司估值介于 6000-6500 万美元之间。Wunderlist 现在拥有 600 多万名用户,其中美国用户大约为三分之一。今年 2 月,随着 LivingSocial 高级副总裁查德·福勒(Chad Fowler)的强势加入,雷柏决定在硅谷为商业拓展团队建立一个新的办公室。是的,美国是他们的下一个目标。

优酷

题图来自 Dribbble

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5年前 British Accuse David Miranda, Glenn Greenwald's Partner, Of 'Terrorism'


By Mark Hosenball

WASHINGTON, Nov 1 (Reuters) - British authorities claimed the domestic partner of reporter Glenn Greenwald was involved in "terrorism" when he tried to carry documents from former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden through a London airport in August, according to police and intelligence documents.

Greenwald's partner, David Miranda, was detained and questioned for nine hours by British authorities at Heathrow on Aug. 18, when he landed there from Berlin to change planes for a flight to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.

After his release and return to Rio, Miranda filed a legal action against the British government, seeking the return of materials seized from him by British authorities and a judicial review of the legality of his detention.

At a London court hearing this week for Miranda's lawsuit, a document called a "Ports Circulation Sheet" was read into the record. It was prepared by Scotland Yard - in consultation with the MI5 counterintelligence agency - and circulated to British border posts before Miranda's arrival. The precise date of the document is unclear.

"Intelligence indicates that Miranda is likely to be involved in espionage activity which has the potential to act against the interests of UK national security," according to the document.

"We assess that Miranda is knowingly carrying material the release of which would endanger people's lives," the document continued. "Additionally the disclosure, or threat of disclosure, is designed to influence a government and is made for the purpose of promoting a political or ideological cause. This therefore falls within the definition of terrorism..."

Miranda was not charged with any offense, although British authorities said in August they had opened a criminal investigation after initially examining materials they seized from him. They did not spell out the probe's objectives.

A key hearing on Miranda's legal challenge is scheduled for next week. The new details of how and why British authorities decided to act against him, including extracts from police and MI5 documents, were made public during a preparatory hearing earlier this week.

British authorities have said in court that items seized from Miranda included electronic media containing 58,000 documents from the U.S. National Security Agency and its British counterpart, Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ).

Greenwald, who previously worked for Britain's Guardian newspaper, has acknowledged that Miranda was carrying material supplied by Snowden when he was detained.

In an email to Reuters, Greenwald condemned the British government for labeling his partner's actions "terrorism."

"For all the lecturing it doles out to the world about press freedoms, the UK offers virtually none...They are absolutely and explicitly equating terrorism with journalism," he said.

Separately on Friday, media disclosed details of an open letter Snowden issued to Germany from his place of exile in Russia, in which he says his revelations have helped to "address formerly concealed abuses of the public trust" and added that "speaking the truth is not a crime."

Snowden said he was counting on international support to stop Washington's "persecution" of him for revealing the scale of its worldwide phone and Internet surveillance.

Steven Aftergood, a secrecy expert with the Federation of American Scientists, said that given the nature of the material that Miranda was carrying, a harsh response by British authorities was not unexpected.

"It seems that UK authorities were attempting to seize or recover official documents, to which they arguably have a claim," Aftergood said. "The authorities' action was harsh, but not incomprehensible or obviously contrary to law."

In a separate document read into the court record, MI5, also known as the Security Service, indicated British authorities' interest in Miranda was spurred by his apparent role as a courier ferrying material from Laura Poitras, a Berlin-based filmmaker, to Greenwald, who lives with Miranda in Brazil.

"We strongly assess that Miranda is carrying items which will assist in Greenwald releasing more of the NSA and GCHQ material we judge to be in Greenwald's possession," said the document, described as a "National Security Justification" prepared for police.

"Our main objectives against David Miranda are to understand the nature of any material he is carrying, mitigate the risks to national security that this material poses," the document added.

A spokesman for the British Embassy in Washington had no comment on the court proceedings or documents.

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5年前 黑莓收购变数重重,Fairfax 孤掌难鸣,高通虎视眈眈 刘学文

IMG_1695

自黑莓衰落,公司高管承认失败寻求收购,并且随着诺基亚设备与服务部门被微软收购,黑莓何去何从一直就我们关心的内容。而这一两个月来关于黑莓收购的传闻实在是太多了,黑莓和多家厂商都传出了绯闻,然后又被一一辟谣。

其中看起来最靠谱的是原来黑莓大股东 Fairfax 为首的联合体将 9 美元每股的收购价,也就是总计 47 亿美元的收购价私有化黑莓,双方已经签署收购意向协议。按照收购流程,这笔交易最终将于后天,也就是 11 月 4 日的最后期限签署有法律约束力的正式协议。这就好比双方已经订婚,只等良成吉日正式领证摆酒席。

但是据路透社报道,无奈 Fairfax 金融公司财力有限,无力单独完成收购,而又无法说服如美银美林、加拿大蒙特利尔银行金融集团等大银行联合出资收购黑莓,因此虽然双方已经订婚,但是  Fairfax 连聘礼的钱都没有,且父兄又不愿资助,于是婚事很有可能就此作罢。

这其中的原因应该主要还是财主们对于黑莓重振没有信心,一方面黑莓在消费者市场已经完全败退无力回天,而另一方面在企业市场的状况也大不如前,面临着诸多竞争。精明的资本家本不愿意把钱投到一个前途未卜的企业身上去。

不过不到最后一刻,事情的最终结果还不好说,Fairfax 或许有法子联合其他银行共同出资完成收购。

在 Fairfax 保留着一丝希望的同时,其他厂商似乎也对黑莓抱有兴趣,除了在爆料界喜欢大面积撒网的《华尔街日报》就曾报道过联想有意收购黑莓,不过随即被证伪。而这一次在 Fairfax 收购案濒临流产的同时,也传出了高通正在和黑莓接洽的消息。

不过在芯片领域混得风生水起的高通似乎无意单独收购黑莓,而是加入黑莓创始人  Mike Lazaridis、Doug Fregin  和 Cerberus 集团等组成的财团来完成收购。高通早在 2000 年就把自家的手机业务出售给了京瓷,随后则专注于芯片业务,此次传出高通有意参与收购的消息确实让人略感意外,而黑莓在无线网络技术上的专利恐怕是能够吸引高通的关键。

除了高通之外,思科、Google、SAP、三星、LG和英特尔就收购或局部收购黑莓事宜都被媒体报道过,不过都似乎没有了下文。

目前黑莓的地位十分尴尬,如果说诺基亚在手机业务上的企稳让微软的收购显得十分划算的话,那么黑莓寻找下家的过程真是路漫漫其修远兮

在命运的塑料大棚里,每棵被喷了过多农药的白菜心中,都曾经有一个成为无公害有机蔬菜的梦想。

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5年前 Kitkat 新变化:主屏和搜索合二为一 积木

android_kitkat_02

Android 4.4 Kitkat 这份甜点已经到来,但是要得到它并不容易。Nexus 4、Nexus 7 用户应该是最快得到升级的,Galaxy Nexus 用户虽然被 Google 抛弃,但刷上第三方 ROM 的时间也不会太久(XDA 已经出现可用的 ROM,但是有 Bug)。其它人则要等待厂商缓慢升级,或者寄希望于第三方开发者的重视程度了。

Kitkat 虽然可望不可及,但是我们都可以品尝一下它的味道。在 Nexus 5 发布以后,Kitkat 的代码也立刻放到了 AOSP。开发者们从中提取了桌面启动器、搜索和 Google Play 服务的软件包。只要安装这三个包,你就可以体会到Android 4.4 上最显而易见的变化了。看到这里,或许你会有疑问了。为什么启动器的运行要依赖于搜索?

Ars Technica 网站的 Ron Amadeo 对桌面启动器和搜索做了进一步的研究,他发现了一件有趣的事情。从 Android 4.4 开始,桌面启动器变成了空壳,它是一个帮助文件,其目的是将 Google 搜索注册为桌面。原本在启动器下的布局文件,如今已经转移到了搜索下面。简单地说,Kitkat 下的主屏界面其实是搜索的一部分。(Android 4.4 推送到 AOSP 的代码是不包括搜索的,就是说第三方 ROM 在没有安装 Google 搜索之前,只能使用 4.3 的 Launcher。)

search6

这是什么意思?我们知道,Facebook 曾发布了一个 Facebook Home 应用。它把 Android 的主屏变成了 Facebook 应用的一部分。从 Kitkat 开始,Google 采用了同样的策略。Google 把壁纸、主屏和应用抽屉放到了搜索应用之中。如今,当你解除 Nexus 5 锁屏后,第一眼看到的就是搜索应用。主屏最左边固定为 Google Now。

最近,Google 不断把自己的应用剥离出 Android 系统。这样做的好处是,即使用户无法第一时间收到系统更新,也能享受到 Google 的服务。从 Kitkat 的最新变化来看,Google 的策略又深入了一步。

Android 正开始缓慢地、逐渐地向 Google Now 设备转变。正如 Facebook 一样,Google 希望改变你使用手机的方式,把一个以应用为中心的设备变成围绕其核心产品的设备。与 Facebook 不同的是,Google 拥有的用户基数以及对 OEM 的影响力,可以使其变成现实。要知道,如果 OEM 想要预装任何 Google 应用的话,他们必须预装所有的 Google 应用,因此 Google Home 很可能包括在任何 Android 设备之中。它或许不会是默认的,比如在三星的设备上,但是搜索应用可以搞些小花样(“更好的搜索体验,激活 Google Home!”)。未来 Google Now 的整合将会进一步加深。

图片来自 thefullsignal

May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind always be at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face, and rains fall soft upon your fields.

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5年前 ThinFilm:拥抱价值 1000 亿美元的物联网机遇 杜会堂

rtc09_td_gre_fig01_large

“物联网正受到来自嵌入式设备的强力驱动,它的愿景是创造一个充满智能和交互设备的未来世界。在这个世界里,每项产品都能提供可以马上付诸行动的信息,涵盖产品、用户以及周围环境。”

“物联网的庞大市场目前仍被低估,原因是传统电子设备的成本过于昂贵。”“只要在这些市场增加 1% 的内容,就意味着抓住了一个价值 1000 亿美元的机会。”

这份雄心勃勃的声明来自挪威印刷电子制造商 ThinFilm。印刷电子(Printed electronics)是一项结合传统印刷和电路板制造的新技术,通过数字喷墨技术在基板上喷上导电线路和图形即可完成整个电路板的制造。

在传统电子设备中,PCB 印刷板承担了电子元器件的支撑和连接作用。ThinFilm 在去年宣布,他们成功地在塑料上打印出计算机基本电子组件。ThinFilm 和帕洛阿尔托研究中心一起,将电池、内存等器件同时打印到塑料上。

ThinFilm 在过去曾尝试过为掌机制造游戏卡,技术同样来源于电子印刷。但掌机游戏卡的市场过于小众,他们决定转变方向。现在 ThinFilm 的主要产品包括可以擦写数据的存储类标签、传感器标签以及内容显示器标签。

优酷

 

优酷

如文章开头那份“大言不惭”的声明所言,价值 1000 亿美元的物联网才是 ThinFilm 的最终目标。今年 9 月,ThinFilm 的计划吸引到景顺投资(Invesco Funds)为其背书:景顺投资 1480 万英镑换取 ThinFlim 13% 的股权。不久前,ThinFilm 宣布他们再次募集到来自景顺的投资:景顺以每股 3 克朗的价格购买 4670 万份 ThinFilm 股票,总价值为 1.4 亿克朗(约 2400 万美元)。

“景顺的持续投资让我们看到国际市场对 ThinFilm 的强烈兴趣。”ThinFilm CEO 达沃·苏迪迦(Davor Sutija)的回答自信满满,“这笔投资也让我们能够传递对物联网的美妙遐想。现在,利用近场无线通讯技术打印电子物件已经是物联网的一部分了。”

眼下市场上充斥着各类电子标签,甚至新兴市场的不少厂商也在跃跃欲试,但他们的产品大都只是简单拼装。和前者不同,ThinFilm 将所有组件整合到一套系统内。过去 15 年,他们在铁电存储器上积累的丰厚经验开始不断显现它的价值:去年 12 月,ThinFlim 制造出能够检测温度阈值的电子标签;今年 6 月,他们又拿出电子标签的低电压方案。

对于产品未来的前景,ThinFilm 认为电子标签必将取代传统条形码。原因是前者可以携带更多内容,显示产品的价格、批次、包装、组分和销量。而用于药物和食品的电子标签,方便监管者在发生事故时追查来源和生产信息——对于条形码来说,电子标签的这项功能是致命的。

更重要的是,所有信息完全基于云端。电子标签可以和移动设备组建成一个浩瀚无穷的信息网络,服务于日趋庞大的商业活动——在这点上,达沃·苏迪迦念兹在兹的“价值 1000 亿美元的物联网”真是一点也不夸张。

 

题图来自 RTC Magazine

阅读、思考、自我反省,相信坚持可以改变人生。

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