April 30, 2012

CHUCK NORRIS! .. I mean Google.

Okay, people.

Google. It’s a six-letter word and is synonymized with “Key to the Internet”. Invented in NC a long time ago, this website is great for projects, research, and, well, finding things. The engine is so popular that it became an adjective! This search engine, however, is rigged by some very interesting characters.. who like pranking.

For example, if you search “zerg rush” on Google, you’ll be zerg’d- when an army of incredibly weak enemies overwhelm you not with strength, but with their numbers. Battle the O’s as they eat your searches!

Also, who doesn’t love a good Chuck Norris Search? Chuck Norris was a karate-martial artist, but he became an actor sometime in the 90’s and since then, has been a God of sorts in the world of jokes. Chuck-isms, I call ‘m. For example:

Chuck Norris can drown a fish.

Chuck Norris likes his meat so rare, he only eats unicorns.

Chuck Norris doesn’t call the wrong number. You answer the wrong phone.

Oh, this one’s my favorite. DO A BARREL ROLL! The term ‘Barrel Roll’ means that you roll over, usually in a plane, and keep going in the direction you were going before barrel rolling.

Wanna play with Google? Search Google Gravity and hit ‘I’m feeling lucky’!

Feel out of the norm? Google ‘Askew’. I dare you not to tilt your head.

Go to this link if you want to be stupidified by internet psychics!

Aaand.. there’s more.. I’ll leave it to you to figure it out. ;D

Anders Breivik is possibly the worst criminal of 2011. In Norway, Breivik set off a car bomb, and went on a shooting rampage on the Island of Utoeya. The car bomb killed 8 people, while Breivik shot and killed 69 people on the island. During the rampage, the Island was the home of many children at a summer camp, Breivik dressed up as a Police Officer and used the confusion to massacre them.
Breivik had his personal reasons to go on the shooting rampage.  He believes, that the immigration of people to Norway is terrible, and that it had to be stopped. The camp at Utoeya its a Labour Party camp, and they are the political party that supports immigration.
Currently Breivik’s trial is starting up. One of the main questions is, whether he is going to be considered sane. If, he is found insane, he will immediately be sent to a Insane Facility. Breivik, insists that he is sane, and that he is not criminally responsible for the killings.
If, Breivik is found sane, he will be facing the longest prison sentence that the Norway Prison System offers, at 21 years in jail. Breivik has called the Norway sentences pathetic, and wants either to be killed or to be acquitted. This sentence is in high contrast to a US sentence, which would either be Death, or multiple life sentences.
The Norwegian people, largely disagree with Breivik. To show that they disagree with him, thousands of people around Norway gathered to sing the song Children of the Rainbow. Breivik disapproves of the song’s maker, so it was a statement by the Norwegian people that they do not believe in Breivik.

April 26, 2012

Although our newspaper isn’t exactly a bestseller, I wrote an article about the Booster Club, and how I didn't think they were equal and fair to every sports team. This article has stirred what could be called some disagreement and unhappiness with some people. I decided to dig a little deeper into this controversy, by interviewing a few coaches and the Athletic Director about their opinions on the equality.  I asked a few coaches who wanted to remain anonymous about what they thought. One coach said “I feel like our school supports sports and the Booster Club does a lot for our teams. They came to the matches and the parents went to the meetings. I understand they cycle through uniforms and we have lots of teams so it takes a while. We are getting new uniforms next year and we supply our own shorts.  I don’t see anything too horrible about the Booster Club. ” Another coach said “I am very thankful that students, parents, coaches, and the Booster Club all work together to raise money, to provide teams with the best equipment possible. It doesn’t always happen as quickly as we might like but I understand it’s a financial issue and these things take time. I appreciate everyone's efforts in supporting Smith athletics!”
Then I talked to Coach Casey, who has been coaching here for 8 years. I asked her what she thought of the funding “Honestly, I don’t know, I go to Coach Minnick and ask him for new equipment, and he gives it to me. I asked for new goalie equipment this year, and we will have it for next season. We got new jerseys which we can share with lacrosse and I didn’t think the old ones were that bad. Some programs do their own fundraising which is fine, but I think the Booster Club does a good job. I think more parents from different teams should join the Booster Club, so it’s not just parents from one team. I also think students need to support all the programs. I have tried to support every program, and go and watch games and matches.”
Lastly, I talked to Coach Minnick, the Athletic Director at Smith. First, I asked him how equipment and funding were given out and he said,  “There is no formula, it’s based on need. If a team needs uniforms I will try and get them nice, high quality, not cheap, uniforms that will last for a while. Some funding for these things depend on team participation in fundraisers. I don’t want to constantly bother parents to be giving money so we try to stick to three main fundraisers: the fall and spring carwashes and the fruit sales. These bring in a nice chunk of money to add for the equipment. The philosophy is just simple and easy.”
When I asked him about what he did with the money teams raised in their own fundraisers, the answer was simply that he didn’t want to bother the parents. This is a little unclear, but the money most likely goes into the bank account for when the team does get new uniforms.
From the coaches perspectives, It sounds like the Booster Club does a good job and tries their best to be equal among teams, from the coaches perspective.

What to do in scary/lifethreatening situations

Alright guys, you’re all hopelessly undereducated in things that really matter.

No worries, auntie Hana’s here to help!

Below is a ittle-little index of things to do if..

  • You fall off a building
  • You have to jump off a moving car
  • You need to survive in the desert, arctic or whatever

And more!

Oh god, I sound like a saleswoman. Well, the article doesn’t cost anything to read!

And it’s actually really interesting. Straight from the experts(and wikihow)!

So, let’s get to it!

What to do if you’re falling off a building

First off, DON'T DIE. Now, what you want to do is if you’re falling from high enough, make a little arch with your back to slow your fall, tummy down. You also want to watch where you’re landing because.. let’s face it, would you rather land in a ditch of rabid tigers or a glade of fluffy-soft flowers? As far as landing goes, you either want the balls of your feet to feel the impact, or you want to do a sort of forward-roll as you land. DON'T LAND ON YOUR HEAD! That is all.

What to do if you are faced with a mountain lion

Don’t scream. Don’t run. If you’re wearing a jacket, open it out so that you look as big as possible. Stand your ground and stare at the lion, make sure you don’t show fear or else it’ll kill you. You would be smart to throw rocks in its direction, but not hitting it directly so you don’t tick  off. Just scare it away, mmkay? And if it DOES try to attack you, punch it in the snout. Don’t do that to sharks, though- punch them in the gills.

What to do if you’re stranded in the desert

Don’t panic! You have to stay calm so you keep your temperature up- cause the desert gets freaking COLD at night. If you have a vehicle, stay near it. It’ll be easy for search-and-rescue teams to find you with a giant Jeep to look for. Search and rescue is looking for you, right? You DID tell someone where you were going and when you should’ve been back, right? Good. Now, as far as food goes you can eat anything you have with you, but ration it. You don’t know how long you’ll be there. As far as water goes, you can get a cactus- don’t get pricked -and cut it open. The fruits are plentiful with water as are the insides. So you should chew on them, but not swallow them. You can get these things called heat cramps when you’re there, caused by too little salt. They feel like normal cramps- so if you get a cramp, find shade and eat something salty then get yourself some water. Rest until the cramps go away, then keep walking. Now, we gotta talk about the creepy-crawlies.

Scorpions won’t kill you, but stay away from them.

How to jump off a car and not die

You won’t die but it’ll still hurt like heck. There’s a simple three-step process to this: Check, jam, Jump. You have to check where you’re going to land, then wait until a soft spot in the road- grass, squishy dirt, if you’re lucky a matress- is coming up, but not right beside you. Then when it’s just about to be before the car, JAM the cars gears into park, then leap out of the car and make sure that when you hit the ground, you roll. Oh, and don’t jump behind the car or in front of another one.

How to jump off a bridge

You make sure that you’re going to land in water. Deep water, please. And what you’re going to do is while you’re falling you’re going to be like a pencil- a completely straight line. Protect your, um, front and clench your.. eh.. backside so that you don’t fill up like a water-balloon. You want to land feet-first and make sure that once you’re in the water, start flapping your arms like you’re trying to fly. Just so you go back to the surface. Again, make sure the water is deep! If you don’t have enough room, you’re going to.. well, be screwed. And it will hurt!

Yeah, I can’t think of anything else to write about. If ya’ll got some ideas, let me know!


Your friendly neighborhood Egyptian

April 25, 2012

Parents Sue Apple Because of Free Games

Free games seem nice at first but once you get addicted they can cost a lot of money.  Games like Draw Something or Tap Zoo can seem like they won't cost you a dime but in-app purchases can add up.  Parents realized this and decided to sue Apple because of it.  They say that Apple is like a drug dealer that gets someone hooked on something free but then makes them pay more to continue.  One case is of a little boy who bought $2000 dollars of virtual animals for Tap Zoo.  Of course there are ways to prevent this, like requiring a password to make in-app purchases.  Also Apple doesn't make the apps, and they don't even make that much money when an app gets sold, but the judge still allowed the case to continue.  I think 0% of it is Apple's fault.  The parents shouldn't give little kids access to their iTunes account that is linked to a credit card to buy games.  It's just crazy!  Also if it isn't the parent's fault then it is the developers.  They are the people that make the games addictive, so why not sue them?

London Marathon 2012: Women Dies During Race


30 year old Claire Squires dies in the London Marathon race, with the finish line only one bend away.
The women collapsed at Birdcage Walk, the last road runners have to travel before reaching Buckingham Palace where they turn onto The Mall on which the finish line is located. Immediate medical attention was provided, but her death was pronounced that afternoon.
Claire was running in memory of her brother, who died of an overdose in 2001.
She had already raised money for charity by running the marathon but now the amount has increased because of her death.

Overdose Killed Eight Americans in Afghanistan

Since 2010- 2011 US Americans have been overdosing and eight Americans have died because of this. The investigators found out that these soldiers have had heroin, morphine, and marijuana. They army found out  because US soldiers were required to take a drug test and came back positve. The reports say that soliders lingo refers to these drug as “Afghanistan”.Drugs were sold by members of the Afghan National Army and people are now investigating how this all happened. They said that the first solider died because the was consuming opium, chewing tobacco and smoking cigarette. Tom Fitten the president of Judicial Watch said that “you never want to see news of soldiers dying of drug use in Afghanistan” . The group is concerned and wants to discuss this problem

April 24, 2012

Healthy On-The-Go Breakfasts

It’s extremely important to get a good, healthy diet in with everyone’s busy lives these days, and since everyone seems to be looking to lose weight, maintain a healthy weight or simply eat healthier, it’s always a challenge to find a diet that will work best for you. Kids, of course, should not be dieting, ever. The simple rule of limiting processed foods, candy, sodas and other unhealthy foods is efficient enough, but adults find it much harder to balance their weight out. Many kids think that skipping breakfast is a good idea- in fact, it’s not at all. As you all have probably heard, breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and studies show that skipping breakfast slows down metabolism rates, too. However, it’s not always convenient to find a time to fit in that extra 15 minutes in the mornings, so here’s a list of foods that are healthy, easy, and ready for on-the-go people.

1. Special K Low Fat Granola
This has only 190 calories and 3 grams of fat per ¾  cup, and is easy to pour over yogurt, fruit, and milk. This is great for eating in the car, or even walking. Adding fruit and milk will give it extra protein and antioxidants to give your day a healthy start.

2. Kellog’s Eggo Nutri-Grain Whole Wheat Waffles
These nutritious waffles take only minutes to toast, coming out freshly-hot and tasty! Top with jelly, peanut butter, or if you’re feeling good, even a little bit of nutella, and you’re set. 2 of these waffles have only 170 calories and 2 grams of fat. These are perfect for wrapping up in a napkin and taking with you on your dash to the bus, and adding a glass of milk will give it added protein as well.

3. Quaker Oatmeal Squares
These squares are the perfect, dream-come-true breakfast. Pop the box open, and the world is yours. Eat with fruit, accompany with milk, cottage cheese, yogurt, or even peanut butter, just make sure to keep these squares fiber-ful and healthy!

4. Friendship 1% Lowfat Cottage Cheese
We all know cottage cheese is a slimming, filling food, and now it gets even better! With only 110 calories and 4 grams of fat per half cup, adding fresh berries or dried fruit will make this healthful breakfast a delicious treat! It takes only seconds to pop open the lid and take out your spoon, so dig in!

5. Thomas' Hearty Grains 100% Whole Wheat English Muffins
There isn’t even need to cook these tasty muffins, just pop them out of the box and enjoy with your choice of spread. Even a little bit of honey will give you a natural sugary, and deliciously sweet taste for the perfect breakfast. Accompany with a glass of skim milk for protein, and this morning meal is set.

Burger King's New Menu

  You've probably seen the new Burger King commercials. You would have thought that with all of the celebrity appearances in the commercials and how they stress that their food is made with fresh ingredients, that a meal from there would be good quality and healthy, compared to the previous menu. However, I suppose that is what commercials do: make the food look delicious, and include the healthy, fresh take on what they had  before.
  Well, it looks like Burger King changed its marketing because it has convinced the best of us that for the first time, maybe a fast food chain has finally changed its ways. Fast-food chains have been advertising their new menu, as well as its good nutrition and fresh ingredients. Burger King, McDonalds, Wendy's, and other big chains have made many amendments over the years. Unfortunately, most of them are still incredibly unhealthy, with massive amounts of fat, sodium, and artificial ingredients- Burger King included.
Here are some of the "new and improved" items on their menu:

Chicken BLT Garden Fresh Salad:                                             BK Strawberry Banana Smoothie: (medium)
510 calories                                                                                      310 calories
sugar- 6 g                                                                                         sugar- 60 g
fat- 33 g                                                                                            fat- 0.5 g
saturated fat- 9 g                                                                               Sodium- 35 mg
cholesterol- 125 mg
 sodium- 1610 mg

    I don't know about you, but I'm pretty sure that                 Compared to most things on BK's menu, this is
 a salad is not supposed to have that many calories,             healthy. But the amount of sugar is enough to
 sodium, and fat.  I don't  suggest you eat a salad there,      call it detrimental.  It has about the same amount
or at any fast food restaurant for that matter.                        sugar as a regular Oreo ice cream sundae!                                                                                                                                                                  
                                                                             .            And BK is saying it's a healthy alternative!!!
           This is only a glimpse at the new menu. I trust that it is enough to make you never want to go to Burger King again. But if you do go, remember: everything in moderation.

   For more scary facts about the food at Burger King, click here: (click on the Menu tab, on the top left)
       Jay Leno commercial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ouxyzwHpwt4
    David Beckham commercial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0f8qz2Ssr6c

Invisible Children, Wasting Your Money...

Today, I talk about the audit for Invisible Children, the business that calls itself a charity but is not qualified as one.

Audit link: http://c2052482.r82.cf0.rackcdn.com/images/895/original/AR11_small_final2.pdf?1325722694

From just opening this audit, you can tell it is childish and meant to be distracting, to get you to forget what you opened it for. Its first 31 pages, the majority of the audit, is all about their story, their cause, and why they are around. The minority, at a low of ~5 pages, are the actual financials.

However, when you actually do get to the financials, it gets even worse...
They have $5,000,000 in “Net Income”, which has no stated cause in which it has gone to. They have also apparently given $200,000 to schools in the USA, of which they should have spent on schools in Africa. Only ⅓ ($3,000,000) of the money they spent went to Africa, another ⅓ went to their awareness products and programs. $1,000,000 even went to management and general operating costs.. They also spent close to $1,000,00 on filmmaking alone, and fundraising cost them almost $300,000!

This audit was also done by an independent auditing company, not the government, and Invisible Children has never been evaluated as a charitable organization, so keep your money away.

~Mein Identity Keeps Esoteric

Video Game Link to Shooting

Some people have now begun to focus on how video games may have had an impact on the infamous Norway mass-shooting.  Shooter Anders Breivik claims that he used video games to train for his shooting.  He said he used the game Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 to train for the shooting.
To give excuses for why he was alone, he began playing the Massively Multiplayer Online game, World of Warcraft. Apparently, Breivik played up to 16 hours of video games in a single day.  
This new evidence in the case obviously brings up the long disputed topic of whether violent video games cause violent acts, despite many studies disputing this claim.  Examples of other shootings that have brought this argument up are the Columbine School Shooting of 1999 and the shooting of a Police Officer in Alabama.  The Columbine School Shooting of 1999 was linked to the game Doom.  While the shooting in Alabama was linked to game series Grand Theft Auto,  which is produced by Rockstar Games.
After this evidence was released gamers from all over the planet jumped out in the defence of video games.  One of these defences was saying that people who play Farmville don’t become farmers.  Farmville,  a game made by Zynga, is very popular on the Social Networking site Facebook.
Another gamer said, “No one would tell gun ranges to shut down if he trained there.”
A final argument is that there are millions of video game players and that there are bound to be murderers that play video games.

Winter has ONE good thing..

 Spring is here!

Or, well, it has been here.

But I’d rather highlight on what’s great about winter.. I mean, there must have been something, right?

Oh, wait. Ice festivals!

The annual Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival has been running since 1963, held in the chinese city of Harbin, which is close to Siberia. Where better to have an ice festival, right? This is the place where sculptors, builders and artists alike show off their stuff! There’s a river nearby called the Songhua river, where ice is taken to be used in sculptures like..

A building!

Another building!

A family of bears with a man standing on top of the butt of one of the bears!

Whatever that is!

I hate the cold, but I sure do love a good sculpture. You guys should go sometime, especially if you’re chinese in orgin- then you’re going to China anyway, so why not?

April 20, 2012

Anonymous Hacks... Music?

A hacking group known as Anonymous has decided to take on the music industry.  The group is known for crashing many websites and servers and they are even trying to hack China. They plan on fighting the music industry by creating a website known as Anontune, which allows you to listen to practically any song you want.  What the website does is searches the internet for the song that you want and queues it up for you.  Their philosophy is that almost every song you would ever want is on the internet somewhere, legally or not.  However unless you trust hackers, it would not be a good idea to let this code run on your computer.  The idea was thought up by people on an underground hacking forum.  They started talking about their favorite music and how Youtube was becoming a website for listening to music, but the experience is terrible.  The group actually didn't seriously start the hacking until one person created a crude prototype of the website that got other hackers interested. This project could ruin the music industry because who would want to buy songs if you can just listen to them for free on the internet?

April 17, 2012

Have you ever read the Cyclone Circular? It’s the parent-run newsletter about things going on around our school;including sporting events, teacher appreciation, PTSA, upcoming plays, and other things. Although the Circular is informative and very helpful, I would like to talk about one major flaw. This is not just about the newsletter, but also about the obvious favortism of the booster club.
Our sports teams have overall done very well this year. The football, field hockey, girls tennis, and ultimate frisbee teams have already won OPAC, and many spring sports have been doing very well also. But some of these very talented teams have not gained the recognition they deserve. At the fall sports banquet Coach Minnick talked about field hockey winning OPAC for maybe 5 minutes, he talked about the football team for 20 minutes. Football and baseball  have gotten new uniforms every year for the last 3 years, while field hockey, boys and girls soccer, volleyball, lacrosse, and ultimate have all had the same uniforms since Smith opened 11 years ago. Some teams did get new uniforms for the first time this year, although many teams are still wearing old ones.
The Smith Baseball team was undefeated until yesterday, when they lost to McDougle 15-1. In the CIrcular there is a 8 paragraph summary or play by play of the last game. The girls soccer team, is still undefeated when they beat McDougle 3-0. There is absolutely nothing about them. NOTHING. It makes sense because the Booster Club President, Vice President, and Treasurer all have sons on the team. The Editor of the Circular had a son on the team last year, and her other son is the manager. I see nothing wrong with congratulating a team who has been doing well, but you must give the recognition to every team who is doing well. The boys lacrosse team has practice every day on their own field, while the girls lacrosse and soccer teams have to share a field. When members of both teams asked about having a schedule so we could all have a full field some days, the request was denied. The reason was to keep boys and girls separated. If that is a big issue, then why do baseball and softball share a field? Why do we have co-ed XC, ultimate, and track teams? Why did boys soccer and field hockey have to share a field? The reasons only match up to be one thing: favoritism.
And for the teams who have worked extremely hard this year, and not received the right amount of recognition, this is for you. Something needs to be done so that the $890 made at the car wash, doesn’t go to just 2 or 3 teams, but ALL 18. Although it may be too late for anything to be done this year, I hope that this is taken into consideration for next year, when some of my current teammates will have to deal with this ongoing and frustrating issue.   



April 13, 2012

How Workers Make iPads

Here is a video made by Rob Schmitz, the second reporter to be let into Apple's factories in Foxconn. The video will talk about working conditions and salaries.  It is amazing how many people it takes to make an iPad.

JK Rowling's New Book

Perhaps you know of the revolutionary book, "Harry Potter". Who am I kidding? Everybody has at least heard about it. Thousands of people have joined the global phenomenon, knocking the books off the shelves as soon as they got to the bookstore. However, the book series ended in 2007. Harry Potter is still wildly popular, boasting JK Rowling's success on the front of every copy of the millions of books sold. So how welcomed do you think her new book will be? It strays far from the genre and theme of Harry Potter, and is not geared towards kids or teens. "The Casual Vacancy" is about a 40 year old man named Barry Fairweather who is on the parish council. He dies unexpectedly. This death leaves the small town of Pagford in shock. The seemingly peaceful town is actually one at war. Everyone is fighting everyone: "Rich are at war with the poor, teens are at war with their parents, wives are at war with their husbands, teachers are at war with their students, etc..." The whole plot is basically about the people of Pagford fighting each other, and people trying to get the empty seat that used to belong to Barry Fairweather. The book title and synopsis of the book were released in December of 2011, and is set to be released on September 27th. It sounds pretty average to me, but if anyone can turn an average idea into a top-seller, it's JK Rowling.

2012: The end?

I knew the world would end this year. First the earthquake in Haiti, then the Tsunami in Japan, and now.. Indonesia is on Tsunami watch. :c This depresses me, because it wasn’t just one earthquake that set the scientists worrying n’ a scurryin’, it was two big ones. An 8.6 earthquake and an 8.4. Those are really big, as the scale goes from one to ten.. Luckily, the earthquake kind of spread horizontally instead of up and down, and so the chances of a tsunami are slightly less. I really like Indonesia!

Uh.. it’s just in! No one died, no injuries and the tsunami watch was canceled.

Okay, so maybe the world won’t end. THIS YEAR!

Point is, Indonesia isn’t in the best of shape right now. Everyone’s probably really scared o’er there on the isle of sumatra, ya know.

Detroit Tigers

The Detroit Tigers are, so far, one of the most successful teams in Major League Baseball. With the MLB season, just starting up, it is important to get a good start early. The Tigers, with their new roster, are doing just that.
Over the offseason, the Detroit Tigers made a big addition to their roster. Prince Fielder, formerly a member of the Milwaukee Brewers, signed a 10 year contract with the Tigers. Fielder, a big hitter in the league since 2005, came out hitting. In the second regular season game, Fielder hit 2-3, with 2 Home Runs.
The Tigers, got a nice start off to the season. With the first two series ‘ against the Boston Red Sox, and then the Tampa Bay Rays. Against the Boston Red Sox, the Tigers won all three games. Against the Rays, the Tigers, started out strong, with a win in the first game, and then a 2-0 lead going into the 9th inning of game 2 blew that game, and lost 4-2. In the third game, the Tigers had a massive 7-2 victory over the Rays, and moved on to 5-1 on the season.
In the upcoming schedule, the Tigers go on their first road trip of the season. They are first traveling to Chicago, to play the White Sox, and following that series they will travel to Kansas City to play the Royals.

April 11, 2012

Strange Coca-Cola Flavors

You may have tasted the unique flavor of the carbonated drink, Coke, but did you know that Coca-Cola made a bunch of other, unorthodox, flavors you may not have ever imagined. A new flavor in Japan that may surprise you is the Green Tea flavored coke, unleashed to Japan in 2009. Pepsi also has a version called Pepsi Shiso Then, theres the Black Cherry Vanilla Coke – That’s quite a mouthful, excuse the pun. Introduced in 2006 along with Diet Black Cherry Vanilla Coke, the sales of the carbonated drink was not the greatest. Coca-Cola late discontinued Black Cherry Vanilla Coke because of the low sales. Now, we come to the legendary coke that may or may not be real – Diet Bacon Coke. This obsurd yet awesome flavor arose from the internet. That said, Diet Bacon Coke has a low probability of bieng real, the only chance bieng Coca-Cola test marketing this flavor.