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Paris HC with 8 mil EUR budget – Hansen with 500000 per

← Previous Story Kim Andersson still free? Wisla Plock is “in the game”? Next Story → South Africa: 6.000 people play handball! Mikkel Hansenparisparis hcQatar Sports Investmen (QSI) Paris Handball had 2,5m euros budget last year and only saved themself from relegation in the last round of relegation. In the summer with the club takeover by the Qatar Sports Investmen (QSI), the club’s budget rose to 8 million euros! After acquring some of the world’s best like Dinart, Kopljar, Bojinovic, Honrubia and few others, the last signing of the club was the most resounding.They got Mikkel Hansen, and for signing the 4-year contract, he will be earning 500,000 euros per season! Some believe the interest of the Qatari’s in handball will be short-term one, but the club’s president Jean-Claude Blanc assures the opposite: “The Qatari’s are clear about it’s long-term interest in the club. The most obvious proof of that is that Hansen signed a 4-year contract on us insisting on it”. read more

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Youth WCh 2013 Seven team already at knockout stage

2.HUN210345 Egypt37-30Belarus Norway40-16Venezuela Sweden38-29Romania 4.ROU111-43 3.BLR20104 Érd 2.DEN300396 2.QAT201-34 4.SRB102-12 Budaörs Érd PHOTO: handballhungary2013.com 1.EGY300406 1.GER300656 4.FRA102-12 Budaörs 3.ESP201224 3.SLO11123 Budaörs handballHungary handballU19 handballyouth handball championship 5.JPN003-220 6.KOR003-110 5.GAB003-580 Érd Croatia39-18Argentina 4.AUT111133 Spain31-25France 6.VEN003-730 2.BRA201214 1.SWE300286 Érd 6.CHI003-560 6.ANG003-420 5.ARG102-232 5.TUN102-122 Brazil39-18Angola Germany43-12Gabon Austria20-20Hungary Tunisia31-30South Korea Denmark38-17Chile Slovenia25-26Qatar Japan29-37Serbia After Round 3 at Preliminary part of the U19 World Championship in Hungary, first TOP 16 qualifiers are known. Some of them are Croatia, Denmark, Sweden, Egypt, Germany… Budaörs 3.NOR201194 1.CRO300236 ← Previous Story VIDEO: Wisla Plock wins tournament in Kwidzyn Next Story → HSV Handball sign Zarko Markovic read more

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SEHA Janc MVP Gonzales best coach

← Previous Story Peter Kukucka to lead Kadetten Schaffhausen until 2019 Next Story → Raul Gonzales close to promotion in Macedonian NT head-coach It is always good to work on preserving tradition and with that thought on our minds we’ve decided to once again give 10 SEHA – Gazprom League coaches a chance to pick their own ‘Best 7′, defensive specialist and coach after the regular part of the season. Voting system was 3-2-1 points on each position with an addition of choosing MVP giving him 5 points instaed of 3. Blaz Janc, Celje PL young star, is regular season MVP, best coach is Vardar’ own Raul Gonzales and best defensive player is Ilija Abutovic – also Vardar.Best 7 of the season looks like this: Stevanovic (PPD Zagreb) – Dibirov (Vardar), Janc (Celje PL) – Stojkovic (Meshkov Brest) – Ilic (Telekom Veszprem), Cindric (Vardar), Kristopans (Meshkov Brest).  Here You can find TOP 3 players on each position and for more details as well as picks from every SEHA Gazprom coach You will have to check out our official Magazine which will also be online available on our website. Goalkeeper1. Ivan Stevanovic (PPD Zagreb) 13 points2. Arpad Sterbik (Vardar) 12 points / 43. Roland Mikler (Telekom Veszprem) 12 points / 1Left winger1. Timur Dibirov (Vardar) 24 points2. Luka Zvizej (Celje PL) 7 points3. Dobrivoje Markovic (PPD Zagreb) 4 points Right winger1. Blaz Janc (Celje PL) 31 points2. Zlatko Horvat (PPD Zagreb) 11 points3. Gasper Marguc (Telekom Veszprem) 8 pointsPivot1. Rastko Stojkovic (Meshkov Brest) 21 points2. Renato Sulic (Telekom Veszprem) 9 points3. Andreas Nilsson (Telekom Veszprem) 7 points Left back1. Momir Ilic (Telekom Veszprem) 27 points2. Vuko Borozan (Vardar) 5 points3. Iman Jamali (Meshkov Brest) 5 pointsMiddle back1. Luka Cindric (Vardar) 27 points2. Miha Zarabec (Celje PL) 15 points3. Mate Lekai (Telekom Veszprem) 6 points Right back1. Dainis Kristopans (Meshkov Brest) 20 points2. Alex Dujshebaev (Vardar) 19 points3. Laszlo Nagy (Telekom Veszprem) 11 pointsDefensive specialist1. Ilija Abutovic (Vardar) 15 points2. Mirsad Terzic (Telekom Veszprem) 8 points3. Tonci Valcic (PPD Zagreb) 7 points Coach1. Raul Gonzalez (Vardar) 22 points2. Branko Tamse (Celje PL) 11 points3. Javier Sabate (Telekom Veszprem) 7 points read more

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Absolute madness CRC pays Mater Hospital €660k to administer phantom pension fund

first_imgKiely, who resigned from the CRC last year and said today he has resigned from the board in recent weeks, added that he was told it was a “legal agreement that went back 30-odd years ago”.Ross said the arrangement would have meant that the CRC would have paid the Mater “millions” down through the years.Kiely tried to explain how the money would circulate as the Mater would receive money which “becomes part of their income for the year, so it lessens the amount the HSE have to give them” and would therefore increase the amount the HSE owed to the CRC.But he said “it was just daft” adding that he tried to get the clinic registered so as that it could administer the VHSS pension scheme itself, but he was unable to do so.He also alleged that in correspondence from the Mater he learned that the CRC is not the only organisation the hospital does this for.“I do know in correspondence with the Mater I was told that we aren’t the only organisation we were doing this for,” he claimed.The HSE’s head of human resources, Barry O’Brien, said he had no idea about the arrangement Kiely spoke of and said the Executive “does the work on the administering of the funds centrally”.He said that as the revelations have “only come to light in the last five minutes” he would need time to assess the issue and promised a report on the VHSS scheme for the committee by next week.Committee chairman John McGuinness described the revelations as an “absolute farce”.He said it is an issue that the committee will return to at the beginning of hearings next week, where someone from the Mater hospital will be asked to appear before TDs.- additional reporting from Michelle HennessyOriginally published 16:24Read: Mater Hospital ‘refutes’ suggestions of operating a CRC ‘phantom fund’ >Video: Former CRC chief got €200k lump-sum payment from charity fundMore: CRC ‘contractually bound’ to top up salaries Updated 20:14THE CENTRAL REMEDIAL Clinic (CRC) pays the Mater Hospital around €660,000 to administer a pension fund that does not exist, the Dáil’s Public Accounts Committee has heard.Towards the end of an extraordinary nearly six hours of hearings on the recent scandal surrounding the CRC, its former chief executive Paul Kiely claimed that the Mater Hospital charges the clinic for administering a non-existent pension fund.He explained that the CRC pays the Mater a premium between 10 and 13 per cent of employees’ gross salaries every year for the public hospital to administer a Voluntary Hospitals Superannuated Scheme or VHSS pension scheme.Kiely also claimed that he has been told in correspondence that the CRC is not the only organisation that the Mater does this for.“They [the Mater] charge us that for administering the fund on behalf of the members,” he said, but added “there’s no fund that I know of” to the astonishment of members.Ross, who initially raised the issue of the CRC’s relationship with the Mater, said the public hospital was essentially “charging €660,000 for administering a phantom fund”.Kiely told the PAC that he raised the issue with the CRC board, saying “It was kicked out of the water. I was told it is what it is and that’s the way it’s to stay.”Ross (below) described the claims as “outrageous” and said it was “absolute madness”.‘Not the only organisation’The independent TD for Dublin South said: “So they get €660,000 for administering a fund that doesn’t exist?” to which Kiely responded “Yes”.“I tried to break it on numerous occasions and no one wanted to know. The Department of Health didn’t want to know,” Kiely claimed.last_img read more

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French coffee shop bases prices on customers politeness

first_imgA COFFEE SHOP in the south of France has decided to scale its prices according to the politeness of its customers.If a customer simply asks for a coffee, they’ll be expected to fork out a whopping seven euro.  If they ask for, ‘a coffee, please’, it’ll set them back €4.25.  However, if they manage to greet and thank the staff, saying, ‘Hello, a coffee please,’ they’ll only have to cobble together €1.40.According to the owner of the Petite Syrah in Nice, customers can be just as rude as staff.  Speaking to english language publication The Local, Fabrice Pepino said: It started as a joke because at lunchtime people would come in very stressed and were sometimes rude to us when they ordered a coffee.  It’s our way of saying ‘keep calm and carry on.Apparently the price scheme hasn’t actually needed to be enforced thus far, but it sounds like a great way to keep people in check.H/T to EaterCouple call 911 because they didn’t get hash browns at McDonalds>YouTube sums up 2013’s defining moments in less than 6 minutes>last_img read more

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Man dies after incident at Waterford pharmaceutical plant

first_imgAN INVESTIGATION IS underway after a man died following an incident on the grounds of the GlaxoSmithKline plant in Dungarvan, Co. Waterford this afternoon.The death was at first believed to be the result of a workplace accident at the pharmaceutical plant but it has since been confirmed that the man was a member of the public.The incident happened about 3pm this afternoon with the man subsequently taken to Waterford Regional Hospital by ambulance where he was subsequently pronounced dead.A spokesperson for GSK said that gardaí had attended the scene and that the Health and Safety Authority has been notified.The incident is currently under investigation and the company has extended its sympathies to the family of the deceased.last_img read more

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Irelands lost generation What happened without the 20somethings Part one

first_imgIRELAND HAS THE highest net migration in Europe.Nobody leaves any country, including Kosovo and Lithuania, more than leaves Ireland. Our net migration in 2012 was around 35,000, but the numbers of indigenous Irish leaving are higher.Without question, the hardest hit generation are those aged between 21 and 28. Over 30 per cent of Irish youths receive some form of income support.But what happens without them? What is the impact on Ireland?In part one of three, we look at the impact on two huge parts of Irish society: property and the pub.“It’s never been this bad”Publicans aren’t exactly keen to advertise how bad things are in their sector.One publican who spoke would only do so under condition of anonymity. He says that his suburban Dublin pub has never seen business as affected.“If you’re a pub like us, you’re having to do everything to compete. We’ve had three places close locally lately, but we’re not seeing a pickup in business.Places in town are still attracting a lot of people, because the people who are leaving are from across the country, but we had a gang of about 10 regulars all head to Australia together.“That’s impossible to come back from.”With a combination of drinking at home and a country with less disposable income across the board, the emigration problem is exacerbating a problem for the pub industry.“The thing is,” says the publican “The kind of people we’re losing would have been your best customers, because they drank a lot, being perfectly honest.But without them, you’re forced to try and bring in those that haven’t left.“So you have a load of pubs spending huge money on smoking areas, function rooms or entertainment that wouldn’t have had.“I know a lot of people will have no sympathy for us, but we are struggling.”“Who are you selling to?”Another struggling industry that won’t illicit sympathy are estate agents.Their industry has suffered a seismic shift in recent years and, with economic recovery on the horizon, they are looking for customers. Customers who aren’t there.“We have a few houses knocking around,” says a West Dublin estate agent, “But really, who are you selling to?“Credit remains a massive problem, but so does the age profile.“Say I have a one-bedroom apartment in Clonee. The kind of people who would have wanted that are a couple, aged 24-28 with no kids.“What emigration has done has left us with a lot of properties that were rentals, and fewer people to sell them to or rent them out to.“We’re all fighting for the same customers.”While house prices are increasing in Dublin the estate agent says reports from the rest of Ireland are “pretty awful”.  He adds that he knows that estate agents are particularly popular, but says that knock-on of emigration is affecting jobs.“These are the people that would have been spending money. Not just on rents or mortgages, everywhere.“With them gone, there’s less spending, which means less jobs.”Next week, we look at the effect on education and sports.Have you noticed an under reported effect of emigration? Email: paulhosford@thejournal.ieColumn: Our emigrated youth are still part of this countryRead: Venezuela’s youth are abandoning their homeland, Ireland is their destinationlast_img read more

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Death snuck in and took a handballer away – remembering Barry Nash

first_imgReproduced with permission from RollOutHandball.comDEATH SNUCK IN and took a young handballer away last Sunday week. Barry Nash from Clare, 18 years of age, is gone.The ripples of shock are still spreading in the small pool of players and supporters, in Ireland and around the world. Barry was a second-year student in UCD, a brilliant hurler with club and county and an outstanding handballer.It jags like an electric shock when such a tragedy occurs, only the empty sadness lingers. The most sickening thing when a young person dies, in many ways, is the thought of what they could have gone on to achieve, the gifts and talents that have been lost to the world. It brings to mind Michael Longley’s poem, Wreaths – “The books he had read, the songs he could sing”…Handball is like a mini-version of the GAA itself – a degree or two separates everyone. No player is more than two phone calls or emails away. When two handballers meet for the first time, they are not strangers; they already have friends and interests in common.That’s part of the reason why the sport is so popular at college and university level – there are great sessions after tournaments, where literally everyone seems to get on, and those friendships endure.I didn’t know Barry personally. He wouldn’t have known me. I first saw him play when he was 13 years old, in Kingscourt, and I followed his progress. He was a powerful, athletic boy, and in time he would win titles at home and in America, culminating in an All-Ireland minor doubles championship.His brother, Diarmaid, a few years his senior, has progressed to the top rung on the ladder. On current form, and with Paul Brady taking a sabbatical, he is the best player in the country, and one of the best in the world.The weekend before last, he competed in a pro tournament in Houston, beating some of the best players in America en route to the final, where he lost to Luis Moreno, Brady’s foe in the 2012 World Championships final. As he waited for his flight home from Houston International Airport, the call came. His kid brother, after leaving the handball alley in Broadford, had picked up three of his friends, turned the car for Dublin and a return to college and, on the M7, skidded off the road after a sudden hail shower.He was killed instantly.The following morning, unaware of the tragic events, I wrote a piece for TheScore.ie on Diarmaid’s achievement in Texas. No sooner had I hit ‘send’, than the devastating news arrived. I doubt there was ever a longer, more sorrowful journey undertaken than that which Diarmaid must have endured from when he lifted off from American soil.The local community in Scariff rallied around, as they do in such times. There were shuttle buses and stewards at the family home, where Barry lay in repose, a photograph of him smiling with Paul Brady at the end of his coffin.The house was decorated with photographs of Barry and Diarmaid’s sporting achievements, with trophies, medals, hurley sticks and handball gloves – a typically warm, happy family home.It will be a sad place now, for the longest time. We can only hope that Barry’s family – who are held in the highest regard by all who know them – can get over his loss. It will seem like the light has been cruelly extinguished from their lives, but, they say, it’s always darkest before the dawn. Maybe, that’s true. I hope to God, for their sake and those of all who lose loved ones, it is.Freak accidents occur, and it is beyond the human brain to comprehend them. It’s like wondering at the size of the universe, or thinking on what the whole thing is about. We’re not equipped with the tools to solve those riddles. We can’t figure them out. It’s in our nature, though, to try, and try.We all know someone, or several, who have been numbed, the joy of life dimmed, in such circumstances. In time, some people learn to cope, to remember things as they were and accept them as they are. Some do not.There was a photograph posted online last week, in which Barry is clad in a green hurling helmet, grinning, clenching his fist in the driving rain, having struck a goal for his local club. I knew him only as a sportsman, and that is how I will remember him. I hope, with time, his family can learn to adjust, and derive some comfort from the life he lived.Bob Dylan’s words are apt for the death of a young handballer. May his hands always be busy, may his feet always be swift. Even for those of us who didn’t know him, Barry Nash will stay forever young.For more handball news, follow @rollouthandball on Twitter and here on Facebook. Stephen Cluxton tries to school his students in a GAA ‘Crossbar Challenge’last_img read more

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Two men arrested following six searches in the Dundalk area

first_imgGARDAÍ ARRESTED TWO men today following the searches of six locations in the Dundalk area of Co. Louth.In an operation carried out in the early hours of this morning, Gardaí, targeting criminal and subversive activity in the Dundalk area, conducted searches at various properties.As part of the operation two men, one in his 30s and one in his 70s, have been arrested.The men are detained under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act 1939 at Drogheda Garda station.A garda spokesperson told TheJournal.ie that the arrests are not directly related to the murder investigation into the death of Detective Garda Adrian Donohoe.last_img read more

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Canada wants 80 of our hairdressers

first_imgSuccessful hairstylist applicants will get flexible working hours and excellent industry standard pay the equal of their Canadian colleagues, which is guaranteed by law.“We are looking for stylists with a total of 36 months salon experience and you can continue to develop as a professional hair stylist with continuous on-the-job training”.Read: Over 10,000 visas for Canada are out tomorrow>Read: Canada could outstrip Australia as top destination for Irish emigrants> ONE OF CANADA’S hair salons is recruiting and they’re looking for Irish workers.Diamond Global Recruitment needs to find 80 “outstanding, creative hair stylists to work in both men’s only and unisex salons”, mainly in Alberta.Interviews will take place in Dublin on the 22nd and 23rd of this month, when candidates will get to show off their cutting and styling talents.Diamond Global Recruitment are accepting applications now which can be posted directly on their website.If you get the gigIf you manage to impress and land the job, you’ll be starting in August or September this year.As the jobs are skilled positions, the hairdressers will be eligible to apply for permanent residency after one year of their two year contract.They can then bring over their families as spouses will be eligible to work as well.Managing Director of Diamond Global’s international operations based in Dublin, Alan Daly said,last_img read more

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Man dies after fall in Kerry mountains

first_imgA 26-YEAR-OLD male has been killed after falling in the Kerry mountains.A spokesperson from the Garda Press Office told TheJournal.ie that the climber was taken to Tralee General Hospital and was pronounced dead just after 4pm today.A post-mortem is due to be carried out tomorrow.Read: Two climbers rescued from snow gully in Derry >last_img

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New Hillsborough inquests will get under way in early 2014

first_imgINQUESTS INTO THE deaths of 96 Liverpool fans at the Hillsborough stadium in Sheffield 24 years ago will get under way in early 2014, a coroner has confirmed today.Lord Justice Goldring told families at the High Court in London that they would not have to wait until the completion of an ongoing criminal investigation into the disaster which could take as long as two years to complete.The location of the inquests will be confirmed next week amid an apparent dispute between families of the victims, some of whom would prefer the inquests be held in London, others who would prefer they are held in the North West where most of them are based.New inquests were ordered last December after the quashing of the original verdict of ‘accidental death’ in the crushing to death of 96 football supporters at the FA Cup semi-final in April 1989.The verdict was discredited by evidence which emerged in an independent panel report published last September.The report found that dozens of those who died had the potential to survive had they received proper medical treatment and exposed a police attempt to cover-up their culpability for the disaster and smear Liverpool fans, portraying them as having been at fault.At the family division of the High Court in London, the coroner told families today that the recent death of Anne Williams, whose son Kevin died at Hillsborough, was a “powerful reminder” of the urgency of getting the inquests under way.Earlier, the Independent Police Complaints Commission released an update on its investigation into the disaster which it described as “the biggest criminal and misconduct investigation ever conducted into the police in England and Wales”.The IPCC said that it had obtained in excess of 20,000 documents including some from the archive of former prime minister Margaret Thatcher but confirmed that some unnamed organisations have been resisting document disclosure.Five retired officers from West Midlands Police, which carried out a now discredited investigation into the actions of South Yorkshire Police, have been interviewed by the IPCC as part of nearly 2,000 serving and former officers who are linked to the disaster and its aftermath.Read: Hillsborough justice campaigner Anne Williams diesThe Hillsborough documents: What we’ve learned so farColumn: The full story of the Hillsborough disaster is still to comelast_img read more

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Dude Uses Kindle Cell Phone While Driving Video

first_imgOh, the modern world and all of its distractions. I realize that we shouldn’t laugh at these things. They’re not really funny, right? This is precisely the manner of distracted driving that safety experts have warnedus about.That said, this YouTube video of a guy taking multitasking to absurd lengths is pretty damn funny–especially with the shocked videographers shooting the whole thing from the next car over.Video after the jump.last_img

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Video tour of space station living quarters

first_imgWhile working on the International Space Station (ISS) astronauts are promised incredible views, but when it comes to living quarters astronauts shouldn’t expect anything as grand. Scott Kelly, current ISS expedition commander, offers a tour of his personal quarters aboard the space station through a video uploaded to YouTube. As most people will notice right away, his living area is really nothing more than a closet.As you would expect, space aboard the ISS is a premium so astronauts don’t get a lot. Luckily, thanks to a lack of gravity, they don’t need a lot either. In space, a bed doesn’t need to lay on the ground. Thanks to micro gravity an astronaut’s bed is little more than a sleeping bag with arm restraints that’s hung on the wall.As Commander Kelly points out, one area that is lacking is space for clothing. He states that six months worth of clothes has to fit into the equivalent size of a large suitcase . That means you may have to wear underwear for more than just one day, but Kelly states clothes don’t get as dirty while aboard the ISS as they would on Earth. Speaking of being dirty, your room is also where you take sponge baths since there are no showers aboard the space station. Talk about roughing it.The room does have some nice electronics though. Two computers are provided to the astronaut. One gives them access to ISS systems including their email and schedule while another connects them to the Internet, though connections are slow and spotty at times. Another nice feature is a Skype-like phone which allows the astronaut to make calls when the space station’s satellite dish is properly aligned.While a room at the cheapest Holiday Inn would look like a suite to astronauts aboard the ISS any good real estate agent will tell you that it’s not the size of the room that’s important it’s “location, location, location.”Read more at YouTube.last_img read more

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3DMark 11 launches its time to put your PC through its paces

first_img3DMark have released their latest benchmark software which will bring tech lovers to tears of joy or to tears of sorrow as they find out just how powerful or as the case may be with my PC, just how slow it is! The benchmark from Futuremark is designed to test the latest DirectX 11 enabled hardware with a series of FULL HD tests across six all new benchmark tests. In terms of getting hold of the software there are plenty of options available from the free edition to the top of the line pro edition. Here is a breakdown of all the versions, note you will need at least the following spec to run them:OS: Microsoft Windows Vista or Windows 7 Processor: 1.8GHz dual-core Intel or AMD CPU Memory: 1 GB of system memory Graphics: DirectX 11 compatible graphics card Hard drive space:  1.5 GB Audio: Windows Vista / Windows 7 compatible sound card3DMark 11 Basic EditionThe free edition offers an unlimited number of benchmark runs using the performance preset without expiry or registration.3DMark 11 Advanced EditionThe Advanced Edition offers all presets, custom settings, benchmark looping, unlimited online results storage, offline results management and more for $19.95.3DMark 11 Professional EditionThis is the only edition licensed for commercial use, the Professional Edition unlocks all features including command line automation, the image quality tool, logo-free demo looping and priority support. $995.00Futuremark has released several new trailers recorded at FULL HD to showcase all the tests and the audio visuals from 3DMark 11. Ironically I don’t hold much hope for my PC as even the FULL HD trailer below won’t run on my system! But the vids sure do look nice! Additionally Futuremark have an overclocking compo on the cards which runs until January 4, 2011. It offers $2000 in cash and heaps of hot tech as prizes for highest scores, best overclock, best performance for the price. With a weekly lucky draw there are lots of ways to take part and win.Read more at Futuremarklast_img read more

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Razer Intros Scarab Mouse Mat

first_imgPremiere gaming peripheral maker Razer has announced a sequel to the Destructor mouse mat, called the Scarab. This one is coated with Razer’s Fractal 2.0 surface coating, meant to create a highly responsive and uniform tracking system that’s perfect for optical and laser mouse sensors. The company has finely-tuned the coating for a balance between speed and control.Should you want to travel with your gaming gear, Razer is throwing in a lightweight carrying case that it promises is more attractive than the usual free case. The mat lists for $39.99 and will be available December 24 in North America.last_img read more

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iPhone 4 Switches to TamperProof Screws

first_imgApple doesn’t want you to fix your own gear–it would much rather have you walk into a Genius Bar for repair, or just buy a new gadget altogether. The company has made that painfully clear all along, with non-removable batteries and other safety guards in place to assure that you don’t open up your devices. And now it has another trick up its sleeve.The company has begun using Pentalobe-screw heads on its devices. The screws apparently first started popping up on MacBook Pros in 2009, assuring that no one could get the pesky battery out of the thing. Next up, they began appearing on last year’s MacBook Air, keeping the whole inside of the ultraportable off limits.AdChoices广告The screws were in place on a certain number of international iPhone 4 units, but not any of the ones that arrived in the first shipment of US handsets. Now, it seems, Apple has begun to install them on more recent phones.Why is Apple going through all of the trouble? Simple–Pentalobe screwdrivers are hard to come by. iFixit, those perpetual gadget fiddlers, are offering a solution–the iPhone 4 Liberation Kit. It’s basically two screwdrivers–something approximating a Pentalobe and a Phillps–and all of the requisite screws, so you can remove the old one and stick in much more easily removed versions.last_img read more

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Gears of War 3 beta first impressions

first_imgWe were lucky enough to snag a beta key for the Gears of War 3 beta, and we spent the whole weekend in the middle of the action, checking the four new maps, three new game modes, and tons of new and re-tooled weapons.The number of changes in the Gears of War 3 beta from what you might be comfortable with from Gears of War 2 is staggering, but most players will like them. The beta shows off some interesting new features that players can look forward to when the full game comes out in September. If you can’t wait that long, take a look at our tips on how to get into the Gears of War 3 beta, and maybe you can start playing early.If you loved Gears of War 2, you’ll love the beta, there’s no doubt about it. Almost everything you loved about the previous title made it into the sequel, and the things that have been changed are clear improvements.The environment is brighter and more open than the previous Gears of War titles: if you really liked the dark and gritty nature of the Gears of War games, you’ll get plenty of “dirty” environments, but it’s not quite as dark and gloomy as the previous titles were. The brighter, more open and spacious maps are a bit reminiscent of Bulletstorm, another Epic Games title released earlier this year.Speaking of the maps, Epic is showing off four maps in the beta: Thrashball, Checkout, Old Town, and Trenches. Thrashball takes place on – you guessed it – a heavily damaged Thrashball court where you and your team need to control the center of the map. Checkout on the other hand takes place in a department store, perfect for fans of close combat and duck-and-cover tactics. Old Town is a European-inspired villa that’s falling apart, but not so much that you can’t find plenty of cover and back-alleys to use to flank the opposing team. Trenches is a madhouse, a dusty, desolate map full of corners you won’t want to just rush around and a massive platform in the center with a mortar on top that you can use to rain death on your enemy.The beta also features three different play modes: Team Deathmatch (where most people will spend their time,) King of the Hill, and Capture the Leader. King of the Hill will remind you of Gears of War 2‘s Annex, and Capture the Leader is essentially capture the flag except you’re going after a person. The fun part is that once you catch them, you use them as a meatshield while you try to keep the other team from doing the same to your leader.In Team Deathmatch has been tweaked to depend a bit more on teamwork. Instead of rushing to rack up kills, each team gets 15 respawns shared between them, and the team that uses all of their first loses. Expect tension on losing teams, and expect new or inexperienced players to be ridiculed for being the weakest link and costing the team unnecessary respawns.The controls have been tweaked from the previous game as well. For example, one complaint a number of players had about Gears of War 2 were that the menus were clunky and difficult to navigate in the middle of battle. The beta gets around that problem with a new tap-versus-hold system that allows you to tap a button to perform quick actions like picking up ammo, reviving teammates, and killing enemies quickly. Holding the same buttons will perform different actions, like picking up a new weapon or performing an execution kill.Gears of War 3 also includes an experience-style system, reminiscent of games like Call of Duty. As you kill enemies and win matches, you earn experience points and levels. Right now those levels don’t net you terribly much, but expect to see more rewards there before the game is released.Epic has also put in a good bit of effort to make sure the title is accessible to new players. Most – but not all – of the controls are pretty intuitive and easy to figure out. Veteran players will have no issue jumping right in and scoring enough points and kills to start unlocking some of the beta goodies, like a beta tester’s medal, Cole’s Thrashball suit, and even a gold-plated Retro Lancer.The graphics have been amped up and the weapon effects are absolutely stunning – especially the new flamethrower effects. The beta crashed our Xbox 360 once, but aside from that hiccup, it ran smoothly and beautifully. The game looks great, and is a lot of fun. If you can get in on the beta, do it – it’ll only serve as more reason why you’ll be glad you pre-ordered the game.last_img read more

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Gmail now lets users make custom themes

first_imgGoogle’s free webmail service, Gmail, has never been about its looks. It’s the sort of webmail program built by engineers and ultimately designed with one main goal in mind: it’s about speed. If you want an attractive webmail interface that mimics a real email client, you go for the likes of Yahoo! Mail. Gmail’s for the guys who want their email as fast as possible, not as pretty as possible.That all said, one of Google’s earliest feature additions to Gmail was theming. There are a number of Gmail themes available within Gmail’s settings, and while most of these are extremely minimal CSS tweaks, they do help in giving Gmail some much needed personalization, and can even help you easily identify which account you’re logged into at a glance.The only problem with Gmail’s previous theme system was that you couldn’t actually make themes for yourself. Now that’s all changes, as Google has just introduced a new “Create Your Own Theme” feature which will allow you to make Gmail look however you want.Making your own theme is actually pretty easy. Mostly, what Gmail now offers is the ability to set colors: highlight color, text color, link colors, background colors, and so on. These user-modifiable color choices can be supplemented with a background image.At the end of the day, no matter how absurd your theme, Gmail should probably run just as fast as it did before. The only way you could really choke it on these theming options is by uploading an absurdly high res picture, and Gmail’s already got a process in place to make sure that that won’t happen.For most of us, Gmail’s default theme is probably fine, negligibly attractive though it may be… but if you really just must have your kids as the background image for your webmail client, Gmail probably just got a lot better for you.Read more at The Official Gmail Bloglast_img read more

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