Thursday, December 25, 2008

X-Men Origins: Wolverine [official trailer]


Wolverine lives a mutant life, seeks revenge against Victor Creed (who will later become Sabertooth) for the death of his girlfriend, and ultimately ends up going through the mutant Weapon X program.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Sony PlayStation Portable 3000

The PSP-3000 is the redesigned version of Sony's popular PlayStation Portable. The first PSP-1000 was followed by the PSP Slim&Lite (PSP-2000) announced during E3 2007. The PSP-3000 is an even slicker version of the PSP Slim&Lite, it was announced during Sony's Leipzig Games Convention press conference. The PSP-3000 looks almost exactly the same like the PSP-2000 Slim&Lite, but this new version of the PlayStation Portable has a built-in microphone and a better screen. The screen of the PSP-3000 is able to resist glare, so it will work better outdoors. The built-in microphone can be used for applications like Skype for PSP or for online gaming via Infrastructure.

The Video-Out feature has also been enhanced, the PSP-3000 is able to interlace with televisions that don't support a progressive output. Now you can use your PSP-3000 on non-HDTV's as well. The PSP-3000 will be released on October 15th in Europe and will be sold for €199.

Specifications of the PSP 3000 as per the Sony press release:

PSP(R)(PlayStation(R)Portable) (PSP-3000) Product Overview

Product name PSP(R)(PlayStation(R)Portable)

External dimensions Approx. 169.4 x 18.6 x 71.4 mm / 6 3/4 x 3/4 x
2 3/4 in (width × height × depth) (excludes
largest projection)

Weight Approx. 189g / 6.7 oz (including battery pack)

CPU PSP CPU (System clock frequency 1-333MHz)

Main memory 64MB

Display 4.3 inches (16:9) full-transparent type, TFT
480 x 272 pixel, Approximately 16,770,000 colors

Sound Built-in stereo speakers

Main input/ output Wireless LAN (IEEE 802.11b)(Wi-Fi)
High Speed USB (USB2.0) (mini-B)
Memory Stick PRO Duo(TM)
Analog Video Out

Main connectors DC IN 5V connector
DC OUT connector
video out/headset connector
USB connector
Memory Stick Duo(TM) slot

Key/ Switches Directional buttons (up/down/right/left),
analog stick,
Action buttons (triangle, circle, cross, square),
L/R buttons
START button, SELECT button, PS button
POWER/HOLD switch, WLAN switch
display button, sound button, volume (+/-) buttons

Power sources Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery pack
AC adaptor
USB power supply

Internal disc drive Read-only UMD(TM) drive

Supported profile PSP(R) (PlayStation(R) Portable) Game
UMD(TM) Video

Access control Region code, parental control

Wireless communications Infrastructure mode
Ad hoc mode (connects up to 16 consoles)

Supplied accessories AC adaptor
Battery pack (1200mAh)

Supported codec (in Memory Stick)

Video — Memory Stick Video Format
- MPEG-4 Simple Profile (AAC LC)
- H.264/MPEG-4 AVC Main Profile (AAC LC)
— MP4 File Format
- MPEG-4 Simple Profile (AAC LC)
- H.264/MPEG-4 AVC Main Profile- CABAC only -
(AAC LC) / Baseline Profile (AAC LC)
- Motion JPEG (Linear PCM or u-Lau)

Music — Memory Stick Audio Format
- ATRAC3plus(TM)
- MP3
— MP3(MPEG-1/2 Audio Layer3)
— WAVE(Linear PCM)
— WMA(Windows Media(R) Audio 9 Standard only) (*5)

Photo — JPEG (DCF2.0/Exif2.21compliant)

*5 WMA Playback feature needs to be enabled.

PSP(R)(PlayStation(R)Portable) (PSP-3000) Color Variations

Product name PSP(R)(PlayStation(R)Portable)
Color name Piano Black
Product code PSP-3000 PB

Product name PSP(R)(PlayStation(R)Portable)
Color name Pearl White
Product code PSP-3000 PW

Product name PSP(R)(PlayStation(R)Portable)
Color name Mystic Silver
Product code PSP-3000 MS

Sunday, November 30, 2008

The male and female side of a computer

Top ten reasons why computers are male

10. They have a lot of data but are still clueless.

9. A better model is always just around the corner.

8. They look nice and shiny until you bring them home.

7. It is always necessary to have a backup.

6. They’ll do whatever you say if you push the right buttons.

5. The best part of having either one is the games you can play.

4. In order to get their attention, you have to turn them on.

3. The lights are on but nobody’s home.

2. Big power surges knock them out for the night.

1. Size does matter.

Top ten reasons why computers are female

10. The instruction manual is mostly wishful thinking.

9. Even after you’ve turned them on, they just sit there waiting for you to make the next move.

8. Incorrectly worded commands are completely ignored, or worse, taken literally.

7. They reveal all your secrets to anyone who wants to know.

6. Upgrades react badly to things left behind by previous versions.

5. Rules are absolute and there is no possibility of compromise.

4. Whatever you buy for them, there will always be a newer version that they want.

3. Nothing is ever “really” deleted… obsolete files will be brought up out of nowhere just to annoy you.

2. Error messages always translate to: “Well if you don’t know I’m not going to tell you.”

1. Despite your best efforts to prevent it, they continue to permit unauthorized entry.


Saturday, November 29, 2008

Quantum & IT Convention ( QITC )

The 2nd Mindanao-Wide IT Convention
Marco Hotel, Alwana Business Park Cugman, Cagayan de Oro City
January 23-25 2009

Welcome to Quantum & I.T. Convention!

The QITC is an acronym of Quantum and Information Technology Convention—an innovation of the two ground-breaking activities of the two well-recognized organizations of Xavier University united to accomplish a common goal.

The Quantum

Quantum is a tradition of Xavier Computer Enthusiasts’ League (XCEL) of Xavier University since 1994. It is a pure competition participated by different schools in Mindanao. Its main objectives are to test the level of knowledge and literacy of high school and college students on Computer and Information Technology and to develop a science and technology culture among the youth.

All Schools, Colleges and Universities in Mindanao are invited to join the First Mindanao-Wide Quantum and Information Technology Convention (QITC).

Registration Fee:

1st Cut Off (Jan.5,2009 ): 2,900(student) 3,200(prof)
2nd Cut Off (Jan.16,2009 ): 3,200(student) 3,500(prof)
Walk-In: 3,400(student) 3,700(prof)

  • Promoting IT in Mindanao
  • E-Commerce
  • SMART Technology
  • 3D Technology
  • Current and Emerging Web Technology

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Miranda IM Portable

Miranda IM Portable is the popular Miranda IM packaged as a portable app, so you can take your instant messaging client on the go.

Miranda IM is a multi protocol instant messenger client for Windows. Miranda IM uses very little memory and is extremely fast. It supports ICQ, AIM, MSN, Jabber, Yahoo, IRC and more. Functionality can be greatly enhanced with an extensive set of plugins (currently over 350) as well. The interface and setup is a bit more involved than other IM clients like Pidgin Portable, but the customization options available are richer.

Download Miranda IM Portable Here

Monday, November 10, 2008

Just Stand Up - Stand Up for Cancer

Just Stand Up live at Fashion Rocks 2008 performace

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Cute! Cute! Cute! Cute!

Cutest kitty! watcha think? =)

Monday, October 20, 2008

Microsoft Explorer Mouse

In technological terms, the evolution of the humble mouse has been an incredibly slow one: it's taken over 30 years for the ball mouse to be replaced by now-prevalent laser technology. Microsoft, though, has tried to speed up the evolutionary process with the introduction of its latest Explorer mouse, which features its much-touted 'BlueTrack' technology.

BlueTrack promises to greatly improve precision thanks to some clever fiddling around with the various lasers and LEDs that inhabit normal mice. Instead of the traditional LED, BlueTrack uses an LED that operates at a higher, wider angle to swallow up more desk space, and a CMOS detector that evaluates the surface on a far more detailed level.

The result of this, according to Microsoft, is that the BlueTrack mouse can scan whatever is under your mouse with far more precision than previous mice - which could be of significance to those who demand precision for their work, perhaps, or when gaming.

The new technology also promises to work with a degree of accuracy on plenty of unusual surfaces beyond the standard desk or mouse-mat thanks to the precision of the new laser. Read more..

Saturday, October 18, 2008

New MacBook Pro Aluminum

New design. New features. New technologies.
All engineered to standards that don't even exist yet.

The MacBook Pro 2008 comes with

• The latest Intel Core 2 Duo processors running at 2.4GHz and 2.53GHz.
• Nvidia GeForce 9400m, a chipset that includes a graphics processors. 70 percent of it is the processor, with 16 parallel chips in one and 54 gigaflops.
• Nvidia GeForce 9600m GT graphics:
- 32 parallel graphics cores
- 120 gigaflops
- 512 MBytes.
• New multi-touch glass trackpad that acts as single button, providing a click feedback when you push it.
• The trackpad is 39% larger than previous models.
• It admits four-finger gestures, so you can call exposé now by using the four fingers, as well as to activate app switching.
• LED displays, which makes the screen a lot thinner.
• All connections are one side.
• Black MacBook Air style keyboard.
• Mini DisplayPort connector.

The specs and prices

• Standard Model: $1999
- 15.4-inch screen
- 2.4GHz processor
- Geforce 9400M and 9600M GT
- 250 Gig HDD
- Super-Drive

• Better Model: $2499
- 15.4-inch screen
- 2.53GHz
- 4 GB RAM
- 512 MB on 9600GT
- 320 GIG HDD

Monday, October 13, 2008

Need For Speed: Undercover

Need for Speed: Undercover is the twelfth installment of the popular racing video game series Need for Speed, developed by EA Black Box and published by Electronic Arts. It is set for release on the PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo DS, Wii, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation Portable, iPod Touch, iPhone and mobile phone on 18 November 2008.

There will be the return of many ways of racing in Need for Speed Undercover. Sprint, Circuit, Highway Battles (a new mode involving racing on a highway with heavy civilian and police traffic),missions (where the player performs specific missions usually involving the Tri-City Police Department), the "Cops and Robbers" mode, and a new gameplay mode called "The Heist"


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Codename: Vienna (Windows 7) - Successor to Windows Vista

Windows 7, (formerly codenamed Blackcomb and later Vienna) is the working name for the next major version of Microsoft Windows and the successor to Windows Vista. Microsoft has announced that it is "scoping Windows 7 development to a three-year timeframe", and that "the specific release date will ultimately be determined by meeting the quality bar."

Windows 7 will ship in both client and server versions with the client versions available in both 32-bit and 64-bit editions. The server version of Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, is 64-bit only.

Little is known about the Windows 7 feature set, though public presentations from company officials have disseminated information about some features. Leaked information from people to whom the Milestone builds (M1, M2 and M3) of Windows 7 were provided also provides some insight into the feature set.

Windows 7 is expected to be released by 2009 or near January 2010.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Serena Williams: New World Number One Female Tennis Player

Serena Jameka Williams (born September 26, 1981) is an American Tennis player, currently ranked world no. 1, who has won 18 Grand Slam titles: 9 singles, 7 doubles along with her sister, 2 mixed doubles and two Olympic gold medals in women's doubles. She is the most recent player, male or female, to have held all four Grand Slam singles titles simultaneously. In 2005, Tennis magazine ranked her as the 17th-best player of the preceding forty years. She is the younger sister of a former World No. 1 professional female tennis player, Venus Williams. Serena currently resides at Ballen Isles in Palm Beach Garden, Florida.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Nano-Chromatic. The All-New iPod Nano

New Design. New Features. iPod nano rocks like never before.

Technical Specifications
3.6 inches (90.7 mm)
1.5 inches (38.7 mm)
0.24 inch (6.2 mm)
1.3 ounces (36.8 grams)

* 2-inch (diagonal) color LCD with LED backlight
* 320 by 240 pixels at 204 ppi

* 8GB or 16GB flash drive1
* Holds up to 2,000 or 4,000 songs in 128-Kbps AAC format3
* Holds up to 7,000 or 14,000 iPod-viewable photos3
* Holds up to 8 hours or up to 16 hours of video3

* Skip-free playback
* Frequency response: 20Hz to 20,000Hz
* Audio formats supported: AAC (16 to 320 Kbps), Protected AAC (from iTunes Store), MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps), MP3 VBR, Audible (formats 2, 3, and 4), Apple Lossless, AIFF, and WAV.

H.264 video, up to 1.5 Mbps, 640 by 480 pixels, 30 frames per second, Low-Complexity version of the H.264 Baseline Profile with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov file formats; H.264 video, up to 2.5 Mbps, 640 by 480 pixels, 30 frames per second, Baseline Profile up to Level 3.0 with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov file formats; MPEG-4 video, up to 2.5 Mbps, 640 by 480 pixels, 30 frames per second, Simple Profile with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov file formats.

* Built-in rechargeable lithium ion battery
* Music playback time: Up to 24 hours when fully charged
* Video playback time: Up to 4 hours when fully charged

Input and Output
* Dock connector
* 3.5-mm stereo headphone jack


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Federer Wins Fifth Straight US Open

The footwork was precise, the touch was sublime, the impeccable Swiss timing was back and Roger Federer glided away with a fifth successive U.S. Open crown on Monday.

After a year of disappointments and setbacks, Federer protected his aura of invincibility at Flushing Meadows in devastating style, handing Andy Murray a 6-2 7-5 6-2 masterclass. While Murray's hopes of ending Britain's 72-year wait for a men's grand slam champion were dashed, Federer clutched major trophy number 13.

Once Murray had dumped a weary backhand into the net, Federer celebrated his first grand slam win of 2008 by sinking to his knees, rolling over on to his back and covering his eyes with his
"One thing for sure, I'm not going to stop at 13. That would be terrible," a beaming Federer, who now trails Pete Sampras's overall record by just one, said courtside.

The triumph breathed new life into what had been a frustrating season for the Swiss master. It started with a bout of glandular fever and continued with a semi-final loss at the Australian Open before morale-sapping final defeats at the French Open and Wimbledon. He also lost his number one status.

Monday's victory finally eased those painful memories.

"It definitely feels great. This is a very special moment in my career," world number two Federer said after sealing his 34th successive match win at Flushing Meadows.

"I had a couple of tough grand slams this year, finishing in semi-finals and two finals, one epic at Wimbledon," said Federer, who was beaten at the French and Wimbledon finals by Rafael Nadal.

"So to take this one home is incredible. It means the world to me. I played great. I felt like I was invincible for a while again and that's exactly how you want to finish a tournament."

"I've got a lot of improving to do if I want to win one of these tournaments," said the sixth seed, who had beaten Nadal in a rain-disrupted encounter to reach his first grand slam final.

"I came up against, in my opinion, the best player ever to play the game. I got the better of him the last two times we played. He definitely set the record straight today."

Bad weather forced the men's final into the third Monday of the tournament for the first time since 1987.

While that was good news for Federer, who walked on court having enjoyed an almost 50 hours of rest, Murray was back in the Arthur Ashe Stadium less than 24 hours after beating Nadal.

It took Federer 20 minutes to take advantage of his fresher pair of legs. He sent Murray on the run in the sixth game of the opening set, and three successive errors from the 21-year-old handed the second seed the break.


A gusting wind swirling around the arena only added to Murray's woes and in just 27 minutes the first set had flashed by, a backhand sailing wide to hand Federer another break.

Federer capitalised on his advantage to charge 2-0 ahead in the second set but Murray suddenly found his range and started sprinkling Federer's territory with winners to level at 2-2.

That galvanised the Briton and he had Federer running scared when he went up 0-40 on the Swiss's serve in the fifth game.

However, Federer was fortunate not to be broken when, trailing 15-40, one of his shots landed long. The linesman failed to call it out and Murray, lacking conviction, opted not to halt the lengthy rally to challenge the point using Hawkeye technology.

Murray produced the error to give Federer a second chance and the 27-year-old Swiss duly held serve.

Displaying the tennis that has become his hallmark -- but unsighted for much of this year -- Federer conjured a dazzling array of backhand, forehand and volley winners to claim four successive points and break Murray again for the set.

A cry of "We love you Roger" echoed around the Ashe arena and Federer responded by lifting his game in the third set.

A weary Murray managed to win only three points as the Swiss stormed 5-0 up before the Scot rallied briefly to foil Federer's first attempt at serving out for the championship. One game later, though, he ran out of puff.


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Google Launches New Web Browser: Chrome

Google Chrome is a browser that combines a minimal design with sophisticated technology to make the web faster, safer, and easier.

A fresh take on the browser

At Google, we spend much of our time working inside a browser. We search, chat, email and collaborate in a browser. And like all of you, in our spare time, we shop, bank, read news and keep in touch with friends - all using a browser. People are spending an increasing amount of time online, and they're doing things never imagined when the web first appeared about 15 years ago.

Since we spend so much time online, we began seriously thinking about what kind of browser could exist if you started from scratch and built on the best elements out there. We realized that the web had evolved from mainly simple text pages to rich, interactive applications and that we needed to completely rethink the browser. What we really needed was not just a browser, but also a modern platform for web pages and applications, and that's what we set out to build.

So today we're releasing the beta version of a new open source browser: Google Chrome.

On the surface, we designed a browser window that is streamlined and simple. To most people, it isn't the browser that matters. It's only a tool to run the important stuff - the pages, sites and applications that make up the web. Like the classic Google homepage, Google Chrome is clean and fast. It gets out of your way and gets you where you want to go.

Under the hood, we were able to build the foundation of a browser that runs today's complex web applications much better . By keeping each tab in an isolated "sandbox", we were able to prevent one tab from crashing another and provide improved protection from rogue sites. We improved speed and responsiveness across the board. We also built V8, a more powerful JavaScript engine, to power the next generation of web applications that aren't even possible in today's browsers.

This is just the beginning - Google Chrome is far from done. We've released this beta for Windows to start the broader discussion and hear from you as quickly as possible. We're hard at work building versions for Mac and Linux too, and we'll continue to make it even faster and more robust.

We owe a great debt to many open source projects, and we're committed to continuing on their path. We've used components from Apple's WebKit and Mozilla's Firefox, among others - and in that spirit, we are making all of our code open source as well. We hope to collaborate with the entire community to help drive the web forward.

The web gets better with more options and innovation. Google Chrome is another option, and we hope it contributes to making the web even better.

But enough from us. The best test of Google Chrome is to try it yourself. -

I have tried and tested it! It's so cool, safe and more faster and its design is so minimal. And it's for FREE!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Gossip Girl: Summer, Kind of Wonderful (season premiere)

"Sex, lies and scandal never take a vacation." - Gossip Girl

Our favorite bunch of tortured and flawed teens is back in action with a season that starts in The Hamptons. To our viewing pleasure, no matter where they go or what time of year it is, sex, lies and scandal follow the Gossip Girl characters around. The season premiere delivered on all three counts and even more!

The small time jump between the first season finale and the season premiere was a nice idea. It allowed characters to grow a bit while we weren't looking but not too much that we wouldn't recognize them. It also gave us (and the producers) a chance to see the bunch in a setting other than school.

Most characters are where I thought they would be after the jump: Serena and Dan moping around and thinking about the other, Chuck and Blair moping around and thinking about the other while trying to entertain themselves with other people, Jenny trying to make her internship work but having a hard time at it.

What I didn't expect (until I've read the spoilers about it a few weeks ago) was to see Nate in the arms of an older woman. When I first heard the news that Mädchen Amick was set to guest star in four episodes as a love interest for one of the male teens, I first thought of Chuck. He has the background for doing such things. But when I heard it was Nate, it took me a minute to make this work in my head mostly because, up to that point, I thought that Nate and Serena would spend part of the summer as a couple. When you think about it, it's not that surprising that Nate hooked up with Catherine. He is a hot young man, she is a hot cougar. He is going through a rough patch (father in hiding, friendship problems, etc.) and Catherine brings to him some needed action and lovin'. She seems to have a marriage that is not bringing her everything that she needs. Mädchen Amick was a good choice to play Catherine. She has the looks and can totally deliver the bitchy lines her character must say (just wait to see her in the upcoming episodes).

My favorite storyline of the season premiere is that of Chuck and Blair. I just love to see them face off and try to be the one who's right. In order not to lose face in front of Chuck, Blair comes back to the States with a new boyfriend. Oh the drama! Not only does it bring drama between Blair and "James," who are not truthful to one another, but it also serves its original purpose of making Chuck extremely jealous. One of my favorite scene is when "James" finds the truth about Blair and Chuck and she replies saying that Chuck uses people and that it's bad so she had to get back at him. But Blair, aren't you using people too? "You two deserve each other," "James" told her. He is oh so right but it's almost best to see Blair and Chuck apart than together.

How Blair-like of her to change her mind about dumping "James" when she discovers that he is named Marcus and that he is a Lord? It's every girl's dream to become a princess so no wonder Blair decided to give the couple one more chance when Chuck isn't able to say the words Blair wants to hear. Chuck is totally the Christian Troy of Gossip Girl. He is a ladies' man who likes the idea of being with someone but can't commit.

I know that I'm supposed to root for Dan and Serena since they are the core couple but I find myself actually rooting for them to be with other people. It's like they are going through the "Rachel and Ross syndrome" on Friends with having the characters hook up, break up, wonder, ponder, hook up, break up, etc. Because I've endured the Ross and Rachel thing for 10 years, it's like I can't cope with it too long nowadays especially when there is one of the characters in the couple that I don't care much for (I'm not a huge Serena fan). It was cute to see Dan show up at the White Party but I just don't care for them together anymore... Are you with me on this?

Other tidbits of interest:

  • Chuck as a P.I. on speed dial!!!
  • Little Jenny has to grow up very fast due to her internship for Eleanor. She has to work with adults and cope with adult problems. If she keeps working for Eleanor most of the season, it wouldn't surprise me if she gets entangled in more grown up problems that can lead up to sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll. I don't want Little Jenny to have to face such problems but then again, it may be interesting to see how she deals with those.
  • Rufus went on tour. Did he forget about Lily? And did she forget about him during her honey moon?
  • We didn't see much of Eric in the premiere. What has he been up to? Did he hook up with someone in The Hamptons?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Rafael Nadal, New World Number One Male Tennis Player

Rafael Nadal Parera (born June 3, 1986 in Manacor, Majorca) is a Spanish professional tennis player who has been ranked World No. 1 since 18 August 2008.

Nadal has won five Grand Slam singles titles and the 2008 Olympic gold medal. He captured four consecutive French Open from 2005 through 2008 and Wimbledon in 2008. He is the only man other than Bjorn Borg to have won four consecutive French Open titles, one of only three men in the open era who won both the French Open and Wimbledon in the same calendar year, only the second male Spaniard to have won Wimbledon, and the only top-five ranked man to have won an Olympic gold medal in singles.

For much of his career, Nadal has had a rivalry with Roger Federer. He was ranked World No. 2 behind Federer for a record 160 weeks before earning the top spot. Nadal has won 12 of their 18 singles matches, including four of their six Grand Slam finals.

Nadal has been especially successful on clay courts. He has a 22–1 record in clay court tournament finals and is undefeated in over 40 best-of-five-set matches on clay. In each of the last four years, he has won both the French Open and two clay court Master series tournaments. He also owns the longest single-surface winning streak in the open era, having won 81 consecutive matches on clay from April 2005 to May 2007. As a result, some tennis critics and top players already regard him as the greatest clay-court player ever.


Friday, August 22, 2008

The World's Richest Dropouts

Michael Dell enrolled as a biology major at University of Texas but spent more time fiddling with stacks of computer parts in his dorm room than hitting up the library. Instead of studying, he started selling new computers through advertisements in local papers.

It was a lucrative distraction. By the end of his freshman year, Dell was selling about $80,000 a month in computers. With the money rolling in, Dell decided not to return to school.

He dropped out of college at 19 to run the company that would become Dell Inc.

Dell explained his attitude to University of Texas grads at a 2003 commencement address: "Circle the pitfalls and highlight the opportunities. Then build a vision of how it could all be better and work like hell to make it happen."

Sheldon Adelson is another billionaire lacking a degree but possessing plenty of hustle. Adelson enrolled at City College of New York but didn't finish, probably because he was too busy with other ventures.

When he was 12, Adelson borrowed $200 from his uncle to start selling newspapers. He dropped out of college to become a court reporter. He also worked as an ad salesman, a consultant, and a tour-business operator.

That relentless drive led him to his first big windfall. He organized the computer industry trade show Comdex and made handsome profits leasing out exhibition space. He's since jumped into casinos, where he's been adding to his fortune ever since. In Forbes' most recent list of the world's billionaires, he ranked 12th with a net worth of $26 billion.

Bill Gates left Harvard during his junior year to work on a little company he'd started called Microsoft.

He recently testified before Congress on the importance of improving the U.S. education system.

"Too many of our students fail to graduate from high school with the basic skills they will need to succeed in the 21st-century economy, much less prepared for the rigors of college and career," said Gates.

School has other benefits too, like who you meet. In 2000, billionaire Steve Ballmer took over the role of chief executive of Microsoft from Gates. The two lived down the hall from each other while they were both students at Harvard.


Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Official Mascots of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games

Like the Five Olympic Rings from which they draw their color and inspiration, Fuwa will serve as the Official Mascots of Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, carrying a message of friendship and peace -- and good wishes from China -- to children all over the world.

Designed to express the playful qualities of five little children who form an intimate circle of friends, Fuwa also embody the natural characteristics of four of China's most popular animals -- the Fish, the Panda, the Tibetan Antelope, the Swallow -- and the Olympic Flame.

Each of Fuwa has a rhyming two-syllable name -- a traditional way of expressing affection for children in China. Beibei is the Fish, Jingjing is the Panda, Huanhuan is the Olympic Flame, Yingying is the Tibetan Antelope and Nini is the Swallow.

When you put their names together -- Bei Jing Huan Ying Ni -- they say "Welcome to Beijing," offering a warm invitation that reflects the mission of Fuwa as young ambassadors for the Olympic Games.

Fuwa also embody both the landscape and the dreams and aspirations of people from every part of the vast country of China. In their origins and their headpieces, you can see the five elements of nature -- the sea, forest, fire, earth and sky -- all stylistically rendered in ways that represent the deep traditional influences of Chinese folk art and ornamentation.


Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Philippine All-Stars 2008 World Hip Hop Champions

The Philippine All-Stars performance at the 2008 Hip-Hop competition that took place in Las Vegas. Enjoy! =)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Harry Potter and the Half-blood Prince Trailer

Enjoy! =)

Monday, July 7, 2008

Nadal Wins First Wimbledon Title

Rafael Nadal described his first Wimbledon title as a "dream" after beating Roger Federer in an epic final.

The 22-year-old won 6-4 6-4 6-7 (5-7) 6-7 (8-10) 9-7 to become the first Spaniard since Manuel Santana in 1966 to win a Wimbledon singles title.

French Open champion Nadal had lost to Federer in the last two finals.

"It's impossible to describe. I'm just very happy. It's unbelievable for me to have the title here at Wimbledon," said the Majorcan.

"It's a dream. Always, as a kid, I dreamed of playing here.

"For any Spanish player to win here is unbelievable - for any player - but especially Spanish because we don't have a lot of titles here."

Nadal is the the first man since Bjorn Borg in 1980 to win the French Open and Wimbledon back to back, and now has five Grand Slam titles. Read more..

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Venus Williams: Fifth Wimbledon Title

Venus Williams captured her fifth Wimbledon title by beating her sister Serena 7-5 6-4 in a high-quality final.

The 28-year-old becomes one of only four players to lift the trophy five times or more in the Open era.

Serena made a blistering start, forging a 4-2 lead, but Venus clawed her way back to 4-4 before breaking at 6-5 to snatch the first set in 53 minutes.

Both players maintained a high standard throughout in blustery conditions, but Venus had the edge when it counted.

She sealed victory when Serena sprayed a backhand into the tramlines but her celebrations were muted as she approached the net to give her sister a hug.

"I can't believe that it's five. When you're in the final against Serena, five seems so far away. She played so awesome so it was really a task," said Venus, now a seven-time Grand Slam champion.

"It's unbelievable that I have won five, especially with some of the injuries that I've had. To know every time I come back I have the chance to make history... I love this place."
Venus now needs one more Wimbledon singles title to match Billie Jean King's record of six, with only Steffi Graf (7) and Martina Navratilova (9) ahead of that.

She had lost to her younger sister in their two previous Wimbledon finals in 2002 and 2003, but Serena admitted Venus deserved victory on Saturday.

"She was a little better today. It didn't work out the way I planned," she said.

"It's a great celebration for our family, we're really happy. I've been working really hard and I'm so happy at least one of us was able to win."


Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Surfing Dog!

Surfer dog : A dog participates at the 3rd Annual Loews Coronado Bay Resort surf dog competition at Imperial Beach, south of San Diego, California.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Bill Gates surrendering Microsoft helm

A Harvard University dropout who ushered in the home computer age and made billions of dollars along the way will have his last official day of work at Microsoft on June 27.

Three people will essentially fill the void left behind when Bill Gates retires from the company he and friend Paul Allen co-founded in 1975.

Since Gate's began his transition from leading Microsoft to heading his personally-bankrolled charity, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation , his job as chief software architect has been handled by Ray Ozzie. Read more...

Sunday, June 29, 2008

All hail the new king

by Dan Rafael.

LAS VEGAS -- Top Rank promoter Bob Arum likes to joke that Manny Pacquiao is so good that maybe someday he could challenge heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko.

Arum is obviously kidding, but his point is well taken.

Pacquiao continued to defy boxing logic by once again moving up in weight and turning in another dominant, title-winning performance on Saturday night at the Mandalay Bay Events Center, this time claiming a lightweight championship.

And for those who didn't already have Pacquiao No. 1 on the pound-for-pound list, perhaps favoring Joe Calzaghe like has since Floyd Mayweather's retirement earlier this month, get ready for another change of the guard. Read More...

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Ana defeated by inspired Zheng

Ana suffered a shock third-round loss at Wimbledon, as she was beaten by China's Jie Zheng 6-1, 6-4 in 72 minutes in Court 1. The 23-year-old underdog played superbly, while Ana was far from her best.

The result determines that the 20-year-old world No.1, who had reached the semi-finals last year, will not contest the second week of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time since the 2007 Australian Open, when she lost to Russia's Vera Zvonareva at the same stage. Read more...

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Tennis Latest Rankings

As of June 16

Men Women
1. R. Federer
2. R. Nadal
3. N. Djokovic
4. N. Davydenko
5. D. Ferrer
6. A. Roddick
7. D. Nalbandian
8. J. Blake
9. R. Gasquet
10. S. Wawrinka

1. A. Ivanovic
2. J. Jankovic
3. M. Sharapova
4. S. Kuznetsova
5. E. Dementieva
6. S. Williams
7. V. Williams
8. C. Chakvetadze
9. D. Safina
10. D. Hamtuchova

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Wimbledon under fire for pigeon cull

LONDON, June 24 (Reuters) - Wimbledon came under fire from animal activists on Tuesday for using marksmen to shoot down dive-bombing pigeons.

The tournament employs two hawks to scare away pigeons who had become a pest swooping down on Centre Court and distracting players in the middle of tense matches.

But the hawks failed to keep the pigeons away from the players’ lawn and the open-air media restaurant so marksmen were called in.

“The hawks are our first line of deterrent, and by and large they do the job,” Wimbledon spokesman Johnny Perkins said.

“But unfortunately there were one or two areas where the hawks didn’t deter the pigeons, so it was deemed necessary to take a harder approach,” he explained.

The marksmen were summoned by Wimbledon as pigeon droppings on the restaurant tables were thought to be a health hazard.

The decision to call in the marksmen was condemned as “cruel and illegal behaviour” by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) which complained to the tournament organisers and the police.

“Since the use of marksmen to kill pigeons appears to have been carried out as a first, rather than a last resort, and not out of a concern for public health, but rather because the animals were deemed inconvenient by players, you appear to be in clear violation of the law,” PETA vice-president Bruce Friedrich said.


Monday, June 16, 2008

BMW GINA Visionary Model

BMW just unveiled its latest design philosophy — via a radical concept car — that will sure to raise some eyebrows in the automotive industry. Touted as the "game changer" for the "development of tomorrow's mobility," the new concept centers around the GINA principle, for Geometry and Functions In "N" Adaptions. What this means is the ability for BMW to think outside the box and innovate maximum ideas with mininum amount of the usual constraints associated with car design.

The first translation of the GINA philosophy into physical being is demonstrated in the Light Visionary Model concept. The only specs that may be familiar are the car's realistic 8-cylinder powertrain package residing in a roadster built from an aluminum space-frame chassis with two double tailpies and 20-in. alloy wheels at the corners. Other than that, it is the Visionary's exterior body that will catch all of us by surprise. It is skinned by four large pieces of flexible material that can stretch and contract based on a number of substructures that can move about on the chassis with electro and electrohydraulic controls.

There are four main pieces of skin that make up the Visionary's body: The largest component starts at the front of the car and extends all the way to the base of the windscreen, then down and across the two doors, ending at the rear edge. The next two fabric-like skins begin at the front lower rocker panels, then run across the rear wheel arches to the back. The last piece of skin makes up the rear deck. The roadster's scissor-type doors open with its outer skin wrinkled in a very clearly defined pattern, but they are stretched back into a silky-smooth surface when the doors close.

The fabric that covers the Visionary's body is constructed from a waterproof and temperature-resistant mesh netting on the outer layer, supported by a flexible metal- wire structure underneath to maintain the skin's tension and smoothness. Around a few areas where curvatures of the skin are called for, carbon struts are added to allow for higher flexibility while keeping the rounded contours.

The Light Visionary Model is striking not only because of its fabric outer skin, but also its utility in form following function. Because of the flexible skin, the headlights can be hidden or exposed when necessary. The side markers to signal lane changes are not visible on the outside until they are turned on during use — their light shines though the translucent (but not transparent) cover. Airflow around the car can be managed actively as the skin can be closed, opened or stretched based on need; the rocker-panel shape can be adjusted for better aerodynamics. And because the rear deck is covered by one single piece of fabric, the spoiler can be completely hidden when it is not in use.

Chris Bangle, Head of BMW Group Design, says, "Personal customer requirements will broaden the context of our products and change the core values that define our industry along the way." That's why BMW is focused on breaking new ground and finding innovative design solutions. And by the looks of the GINA Light Visionary Model, BMW is in the forefront of ingenious automotive design.


Sunday, June 15, 2008

Ana Ivanovic, New World Number One Female Tennis Player

Ana Ivanovic

Residence: Basel, Switzerland
Date of Birth: November 6, 1987
Birthplace: Belgrade, Serbia
Height: 6'1 (1.86 m)
Weight: 152 lbs. (69 kg)
Plays: Right-handed (two-handed backhand)
Status: Pro (August 2003)

Career Highlights

Winner (7): 2008 - Indian Wells, Roland Garros; 2007 - Berlin, Los Angeles, Luxembourg; 2006 - Montreal; 2005 - Canberra; 2004 - ITF/Mallorca 2-ESP, ITF/Gifu-JPN, ITF/Fukuoka-JPN, ITF/Fano-ITA, ITF/Batumi-GEO.
Finalist (3): 2008 - Australian Open; 2007 - Tokyo [Pan Pacific], Roland Garros 2007
Semifinalist: (8): 2008 - Sydney, Berlin; 2007 - Amelia Island, Wimbledon, Year-End Championships; 2005 - Warsaw, Zurich, Linz.
Quarterfinalist (15): 2008 - Dubai; 2007 - Gold Coast, Sydney, Antwerp, s‘Hertogenbosch
2006 - Sydney, Indian Wells, Warsaw, s'Hertogenbosch; Los Angeles; Linz, Hasselt
2005 - Miami, Roland Garros; 2004 - Luxembourg.

Finalist (1): 2006 - 's-Hertogenbosch (w/Kirilenko).
Semifinalist (2): 2006 - Tokyo [Pan Pacific], Warsaw (both w/Kirilenko).

Career in review

2003 - Made pro debut on ITF Circuit (played four events), also Tour debut (l. in Luxembourg qualifying).

2004 - Top 100 finish in first full season on the Tour, making the biggest ranking jump of any player in 2004 (608 spots); as world No.156 qualifier at Zürich (in third career main draw after Vienna, Birmingham earlier in season), upset No.29 Golovin 75 67(2) 76(3) in 1r (overcame 5-1 third-set deficit, 2mp), l. to V.Williams 76(11) 76(6) in 2r (held five set points in first set and three in second set tie-break); the next week, made Tour QF debut at Luxembourg (l. to Medina Garrigues), afterwards on November 1 made Top 100 debut (at No.96); started season winning first 21 matches and three titles, $10,000 ITF/Mallorca 2-ESP, $50,000 ITF/Gifu-JPN (as qualifier) and $50,000 ITF/Fukuoka-JPN (as qualifier); won two more $50,000 ITF Circuit titles (ITF/Fano-ITA, ITF/Batumi-GEO) just prior to qualifying for Zürich.

2005 - Breakthrough season, highlighted by career-first Tour singles title at Canberra and first Top 20 finish; captured title in first event of year at Canberra (as qualifier, d. LL Czink in final, had defeated Czink in final round of qualifying, believed to be a Tour first; 26th qualifier in Tour history to win a title); reached QF or better at five other events, incl. QF at Miami (d. world No.7 Kuznetsova en route for first Top 10 victory, falling to Mauresmo in first Tier I QF), SF at Warsaw (d. No.10 Zvonareva en route to first Tier II SF, losing to eventual champion Henin-Hardenne), QF at Roland Garros (on debut, d. No.3 Mauresmo en route for best match win of career to date, falling to Petrova in first Grand Slam QF), and consecutive SF in the fall at Zürich (l. to Schnyder in first Tier I SF) and Linz (l. again to Schnyder); in addition to Roland Garros, made debuts at all other Grand Slams, at Australian Open (l. in 3r to Mauresmo), Wimbledon (l. in 3r to Pierce) and US Open (as No.18 seed, upset in 2r by Vento-Kabchi in 3s; at No.16, was highest ranked player to make her debut at the US Open since No.14 Capriati in 1990, bettered only by No.12 Seles in 1989 since inception of computer rankings in 1975); reduced ranking to less than one-fifth between beginning and end of season, ranked No.100 in first event at Canberra, making Top 50 debut (at No.50) on March 7, Top 20 debut (at No.20) after Wimbledon, and rising to current career-high No.16 on August 29; withdrew from Toronto [Canadian Open] prior to 3r match vs. Clijsters w/right pectoral muscle strain, withdrew from Luxembourg w/right shoulder injury and from Moscow w/left wrist strain.

2006 - Second consecutive Top 20 finish; season highlighted by capturing second and biggest Tour singles title at Tier I Montréal (as No.13 seed, d. No.9 seed Safina in SF and No.7 seed Hingis in final); clinched US Open Series victory with the title; seven-time quarterfinalist, at Sydney (upset No.2 seed Mauresmo en route, falling to No.6 seed Kuznetsova), Indian Wells (l. to Dementieva in 3s), Warsaw (upset No.2 seed Schnyder en route, falling to Chakvetadze in 3s), ‘s-Hertogenbosch (l. to Dementieva), Los Angeles (l. to Jankovic), Linz (l. to Sharapova) and Hasselt (l. to Krajicek); win over world No.3 Mauresmo at Sydney was equal-biggest career victory, and win over world No.8 Schnyder at Warsaw was second Top 10 win of season, fifth of career; reached 4r twice, at Miami (l. to Mauresmo) and Wimbledon (as No.19 seed, d. No.14 seed Safina in 3r, falling to top seed and eventual champion Mauresmo); 3r three times, incl. Roland Garros (as No.19 seed, l. to No.10 seed Myskina) and US Open (as No.16 seed, l. to WC S.Williams); 2r three times, incl. Australian Open (as No.21 seed, upset by Stosur), and fell 1r three times, incl. Berlin (ret. vs. N.Li w/left hamstring strain); notched 100th career singles match win in Warsaw 1r (vs. Domachowska), also surpassed $1 million in career prize money earnings; on September 11 (after US Open), moved from No.17 to No.15, her career Top 15 debut; on October 16, moved up to No.13, a new career-high; reached first Tour doubles final at ‘s-Hertogenbosch and a semifinals at Tokyo [Pan Pacific] and Warsaw (all w/Kirilenko); withdrew from Rome w/left hamstring strain and from Stuttgart, Zurich w/right shoulder tendonitis.

2007 - Another breakthrough season of sorts, culminating in first Top 10 finish, highlighted by third, fourth and fifth career Tour singles titles and first Grand Slam final at Roland Garros; won titles at Berlin (as No.12 seed, d. No.3 seed Kuznetsova in final; second career Tier I title), Los Angeles (as No.3-seeded WC, d. No.2 seed Jankovic 46 63 75 in SF after trailing 4-1 in third set and saving 2mp down 5-4; d. No.4 seed Petrova in final) and Luxembourg (as No.2 seed, d. No.4 seed Hantuchova 36 64 64 in final, having trailed 63 30); two-time runner-up, at Tier I Tokyo [Pan Pacific] (as No.5 seed, d. No.4 seed Jankovic en route; l. to No.2 seed Hingis) and Roland Garros (as No.7 seed, d. No.3 seed Kuznetsova in QF and No.2 seed Sharapova in SF before falling to top seed Henin in final; was first player representing Serbia, male or female, to reach a Grand Slam singles final); SF three times, at Amelia Island (as No.6 seed, d. No.2 seed Jankovic en route; l. to No.8 seed Golovin in 3s), Wimbledon (as No.6 seed, overcame 3-1 third set deficit to d. No.11 seed Petrova 61 26 64 in 4r and 5-3 third set deficit and 3mp trailing 5-4 to d. No.14 seed Vaidisova 46 62 75 in QF; l. to No.23 seed and eventual champion V.Williams) and finally first Tour Championships - having qualified at No.4 in Race, compiled 2-1 RR record (d. Kuznetsova and Hantuchova; l. to Sharapova) to reach SF (l. to Henin); notched 12 Top 10 wins during season, at Tokyo [Pan Pacific] (No.10 Jankovic), Amelia Island (No.9 Jankovic), Berlin (No.4 Kuznetsova), Roland Garros (No.3 Kuznetsova, No.2 Sharapova), Wimbledon (No.9 Petrova, No.10 Vaidisova), Los Angeles (No.3 Jankovic, No.9 Petrova), Luxembourg (No.10 Hantuchova) and Tour Championships (No.2 Kuznetsova, No.9 Hantuchova); wins over Sharapova and Kuznetsova were career-best wins; having begun year No.14, made Top 10 debut on May 14 (moving from No.16 to No.8 after Berlin), Top 5 debut on July 9 (moving from No.6 to No.5 after Roland Garros) and reaching career-high No.4 on August 13 (after Los Angeles); four more QF, at Gold Coast (l. to Peer), Sydney (l. to Vaidisova), Antwerp (l. to Clijsters) and 's-Hertogenbosch (l. to Hantuchova); suffered eight pre-QF losses in 19 regular season events, incl. at Australian Open (as No.13 seed, l. 3r to No.22 seed Zvonareva) and US Open (as No.5 seed, l. 4r to No.12 seed V.Williams); surpassed both $1 million and $2 million in career earnings, in fact earning over 60% of her career prize money this season alone; withdrew from Rome w/ankle injury and from San Diego w/knee injury.


Began working with Scott Byrnes (strength and conditioning coach) in July 2006 ... Started playing tennis at age 5 after watching it on TV (in particular Monica Seles), remembering the phone number to a local tennis school and begging her parents to take her; was given a racquet for her fifth birthday and immediately fell in love with the game ... Mother, Dragana, is a lawyer; father, Miroslav, is a businessman; brother, Milos, is four years Ana's junior, and likes playing basketball; all the family likes sports, but none played tennis before Ana ... Trained in a disused swimming pool at the Jedanaesti April 11 sports center in Belgrade ... Best shot is forehand; likes all surfaces ... Likes watching movies (especially thrillers) either at the cinema or on DVD at home; also likes to read (especially about history and Greek mythology) and to listen to music (pop and R&B) ... Loves the TV shows 24, Lost and Prison Break ... Enjoys shopping, fashion ... Favorite food is sushi ... Favorite drink is water, fresh orange juice ... In September 2007 began studying finance at a private university that allows her to take exams online ... Admires Federer for his professionalism on and off the court ... Superstitions are to not walk on lines of the court, and at some tournaments to eat at the same restaurant each night ... Sometimes prepares for matches by playing Sudoku or backgammon in locker room ... Favorite places to visit are Melbourne, where she has some family, London and Paris ... Self-described as strong-willed, sensitive, determined and extremely competitive ... Most admires her family for all the support they give her ... Speaks fluent English, Serbian and some Spanish ... One of her off-court goals is to learn how to surf ... Most memorable experiences to date are reaching 2007 Roland Garros final and playing a charity match against Agassi.

Awards, etc.

  • Junior Wimbledon runner-up 2004
  • Sony Ericsson WTA Tour Most Improved Player 2005
  • US Open Series champion 2006
  • Sony Ericsson WTA Tour Most Improved Player 2007
  • Sony Ericsson WTA Tour Karen Krantzcke Sportmanship Award 2007
  • UNICEF National Ambassador for Serbia
  • Nominated for U.S. Secretary of State's 2007 International Women of Courage Award


  • Most embarrassing moment in tennis is when she took another player's racket bag onto court after mistaking it for her own
  • The President of Serbia, Boris Tadic, attended her 20th birthday party
  • Was featured on a Serbian postage stamp during the run-up to the 2008 Olympics
  • One of her proudest achievements is winning 16 matches in 15 days as she captured back-to-back titles on the ITF Women's Cicuit when she was 16
  • Has won the Sexiest Female Player award for the last three years
  • Finished 23rd on FHM's 100 Sexiest Women in the World 2008 list
  • Named the best-looking tennis player of all-time by The Age newspaper
  • Has the most-visited website of any sportswoman (according to, on 14 June 2008)

  • Source:

    Friday, May 16, 2008

    Cutie Little Doggies

    Wednesday, May 14, 2008

    Henin To Call it Quits

    By Tennis Week

    Justine Henin is ready to walk away from professional tennis. The World No. 1 will make an announcement about her future at a press conference in Belgium today.

    The Belgian media reports Henin will either announce her retirement or reveal plans to take an extended break from tennis.

    The seven-time Grand slam champion withdrew from this week's Rome tournament citing fatigue, incurring a $20,000 fine. Henin has posted a 22-4 record on the season. She won two of the first three tournaments she entered — beating Svetlana Kuznetsova, 4-6, 6-2, 6-4 to win the Sydney title in her first tournament of the season and crushing Karin Knapp, 6-3, 6-3, to win the Antwerp title in her native Belgium — but since that strong start her tradedmark tenacity and competitive spirit has been lacking. A weary Henin has gone 5-3 in her last eight matches and looked lethargic in a 6-2, 6-0, quarterfinal loss to Serena Williams at the Sony Ericsson Open as well as a 7-5, 3-6, 1-6, setback to Dinara Safina in the third round of last week's German Open in Berlin.

    Henin is only 25 years old, but the accelerated pace of the pro circuit prompted her to consider life after tennis. Henin hinted at her desire to retire in a press conference with the media in Berlin last week.

    "I'm young in life, but starting to get old on the tour," Henin said. "I'm growing up and I need different things. Even physically I don't recover as well as I did when I was 20. That's normal. Now I've been playing tennis for 20 years and it's been my whole life but as a woman, as you get older, you need to think about the future. I'd love to go back to study. It would be a good challenge and I've been thinking about it a lot recently."


    Wednesday, May 7, 2008

    Ferrero Snaps Nadal's Streak

    By Richard Evans
    Rafael Nadal did not want to repeat himself after he had lost the Italian title he had held for three successive years. He did not want to appear a sore loser but, in reality, there was no chance of that.

    Nadal, who lost here today to compatriot Juan Carlo Ferrero 7-5, 6-1, has been saying it loud and clear ever since the Miami, before the compressed and impossibly tough European clay court season ever started. He has been saying that the calendar during this part of the year is ridiculous for any top clay court player trying to grab all the ranking points he can on his favored surface. He told us after winning Monte Carlo two weeks ago; he told us again after winning Barcelona on Sunday.

    And when he woke up after that last victory and was unable to put his blistered feet on the carpeted floor of his hotel room, he knew he had been right. But, of course, he was asked his opinion on the matter anyway and, in answer to whether he would try once more to talk to ATP boss Etienne de Villiers, he said, "I have nothing more to say to this man. We spoke to him last year, trying to understand why he is doing these things but it is impossible; it is a waste of time. But when I lose I do not want to talk about these things. I want to congratulate Juan Carlos. He is a fine player and a nice person and this was an important win for him."

    Nadal, whether winning or losing, is a credit to this sport and it was sad to see him so obviously hobbled by his condition against Ferrero. He had the trainer on at the end of the first set to tear great strips of taping off his feet and apply more antisceptic cream but it was no good.

    "I could only put my foot down like this, at an angle, because of the pain, no?" he explained after his 17-match Rome winning streak came to an end. "I try to try my best but it was impossible."

    In the end, Ferrero just had to put the ball out of Nadal’s reach and the man who has covered acres of court these past few weeks, reaching balls that no one else would even contemplate chasing, could only stand and stare balefully at the ball as it sped away from him.

    This unexpected defeat has ruined the chance of another Nadal final against Roger Federer which is sad for the tournament; sad for tennis and very bad for the image of the ATP. To be fair to those who try to make sense of the highly complicated calendar, finding a solution to the problem that Nadal and other clay courters feel so strongly about is far from easy, especially when Miami is played a week later. Next year, of course, the situation will be exacerbated by Madrid moving into May from October with a ten day men’s and women’s event to take the place of Hamburg which is being pushed into a slot after Wimbledon. However, even that is dependent on the ATP successfully defending the lawsuit, slated for Delaware in July, against the German Federation who are furious at the treatment they have received from the men’s governing body.

    But, in the meantime, Nadal is heading home to Mallorca for a well earned rest. "I will try to go with best feelings to Hamburg," said Nadal. Our best feelings are with him.

    Ferrero will now play Stanislas Wawrinka who defeated Britain’s Andy Murray 6-2, 7-6 under the lights on Court One.


    Thursday, May 1, 2008

    Erik Spoelstra (Phil-Am) -- New Miami Heat Head Coach

    On April 28, Pat Riley announced that he decided to step down as Head Coach of the Miami HEAT but will continue to serve as team President, ending a Hall of Fame coaching career. On Monday, Managing General Partner Micky Arison and Riley jointly announced that Assistant Coach/Director of Scouting Erik Spoelstra has been elevated to Head Coach. Spoelstra becomes the sixth Head Coach in franchise history. Following his introductory press conference, HEAT Insider got a chance to catch up with the HEAT’s new Head Coach:

    HEAT Insider: Your father, Jon Spoelstra, is a long-time NBA executive, who spent time as General Manager for the Portland Trail Blazers. How much influence did he have on inspiring you to become a Head Coach?

    Erik Spoelstra: “He’s been involved in the NBA since I was four or five years old. He didn’t necessarily introduce me to coaching directly, but indirectly he did because I was always around the game, particularly the NBA game. When he worked for the Portland Trail Blazers, I remember going to 41 home games every year. I think I was the only kid that went to every single home game. I went to all the practices. When it was convenient with my schedule, I went to all the summer practices. He kind of opened the door and stoked the fire.”

    HI: Your father was an innovator in finding certain numbers and statistics in analyzing the game. Are you the same way?

    ES: “To be frank, I’m many different things with this organization, but I’m a computer geek, stats and information collector. That’s my comfort level. I really find comfort in watching film and obtaining knowledge and I use statistics and computer generated stuff to help me get those stats. That was probably a result of my father’s influence on me at a young age. We’re always trying to evolve and find more efficient ways, more fluent ways to evaluate our players, evaluate our opponent and evaluate our prospects.”

    HI: How did your family react when you broke the news of becoming the new HEAT Head Coach?

    ES: “My parents were thrilled. My mom was beside herself – she could barely speak. My pops was very happy for me, very proud. Then he ended the conversation the way he normally does: He said, ‘Time to get to work.’”

    HI: Do you have any good stories growing up in the Portland Trail Blazers organization?

    ES: “Steve Colter was almost a cult figure in Portland when he played for the Trail Blazers. One time, he came over, I must have been in the 7th grade, and we played one-on-one (at my parent’s home in Portland, OR). He actually dunked on me and broke our hoop. Until this day, we still haven’t fixed the hoop. We bent it upward. It’s still there, and it’s a constant reminder of that one-on-one experience.”

    HI: You and Stan Van Gundy are still good friends. Are you going to be asking him for advice because he is a guy who knows what it’s like to replace Pat Riley?

    ES: “Absolutely. He’s been a huge influence on me and my career. More importantly, he’s been a great friend. I will pick his brain as much as he’ll allow me to until it gets to training camp, where I’m sure he’ll pull the plug on that. He’s been a great resource. Even now, we still talk on the phone and I’ll ask him his opinion on a lot of stuff.”

    HI: How much of your personality do you have to change now that you’re Head Coach?

    ES: “My voice will change a little bit, but I have to be me. I believe strongly in the culture and the way we’ve done things, particularly the kind of person we bring into the family and into the organization. I’ve done that as an assistant coach. I know the dynamic will change a little bit when I’m sitting in the head seat, but I’m going to still try to do the things that I’ve done while assisting the head coach.”

    HI: How would you describe your coaching personality?

    ES: “That will work itself out. I have to be true to myself, and that’s what I know for sure. I can’t try to be anybody else. That’s what I’ve done as an assistant coach. I’ve been put into a lot of positions where I had to coach. When you work for Pat Riley, you’re not just putting your hands on the basket and hanging out during practice. He puts you in positions where you have to coach. You have to be enthusiastic and fierce with your preparation and work ethic. As we move forward, I think that will all work itself out.”

    HI: Will you keep the current coaching staff?

    ES: “Continuity is very important to me. I have an incredible trust level with those guys; we’ve worked together for so long. It’s unique. We’ve experienced a lot of good times, a lot of bad times, a lot of wins, a lot of losses and adversity. You really get to know someone when you win, but it goes to a whole other level when you’re losing. We have a very strong bond and I know I’m going to have to lean on them quite a bit.”

    HI: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

    ES: “My expectations are to get to work immediately. We’re going to try to get a core group of guys who believe in our culture and are ready to work next year at training camp. Certainly, this time next year our plan is to be playing (in the playoffs) instead of watching.”

    HI: Is it easier to take over a younger team than a veteran team?

    ES: “I don’t know if it’s easier; you never know when your opportunity will come to be a Head Coach, if it comes at all. Last year when Pat would make comments like, ‘Be ready,’ you kind of go down that road and put yourself in that chair. Even last summer there were times where I had to get my train of thought right. I feel like I would have been ready to take on (a veteran team) just as I’m ready to take on this team right here. I feel comfortable with the core guys coming back. They know me and I know them. There’s a trust level there already. From that standpoint, there’s a little bit of a comfort level.”

    HI: You have no NBA playing experience. Do you think not having NBA playing experience will affect your relationship with the players now that you’re Head Coach?

    ES: “I think the connection, the trust level and experience and my 13 years working with players matter most to them. They all want the same thing; they all want someone who can help them be successful. They’re drawn to people who want to be successful and they’re drawn to people they feel have a certain level of competence, integrity and work ethic. I feel with the core people we have and the people who know me trust my work ethic and know that I’ll be fierce with my preparation and the time and thought that I put into my job.”

    HI: In an era where many coaches get fired after one year, how much pressure do you feel in your first head coaching job?

    ES: “I’m just focused on the opportunity. We have a huge summer ahead of us. We have a lot of work to do. It’s a big challenge. It starts first with the draft and then free agency and then evaluating our players and so forth. I’ve seen it, but if you talk to a coach 20 years ago, they’d say it was a volatile time then. I’m not sure if there’s ever a perfect time, there’s just the time, the time when you do get the opportunity.”

    HI: Will you have a voice in free agency and the draft?

    ES: “I think we’re going to work together. I’m not confused by my position. I’m hired as the head coach, to coach the team. Players who are there, I’ll coach them. I will have a voice on that. Pat is still my boss. He is the leader of this franchise. He will be hand picking the guys, but we’ve had several conversations, even when I was an assistant coach, about players we want to bring in. I think I’ll have enough of a voice.”