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11. 1. 2009

Mystical Tibet


Gaden Jam Gon Ling Maitri Vihar

at Swyambhunath Kathmandu - The best in blogs

Best in Blogs: E3 Rocks, Palm Pre Leaks, Air France Conspiracies - and Joe Jonas in a Leotard

Top Stories for the Week of June 1 - 5, 2009

image The Palm Pre goes on sale Saturday as the latest rival to the iPhone, and true to its name there have been plenty of Pre-leaks before Palm Saturday. Without explanation, a draft of David Pogue's New York Times review of the gadget allegedly ran on a Web site in India before it hit the newspaper's own site Thursday. Seriously? Gadget Lab says Pogue confirmed that the review on the Hyderabad-based Financial Chronicle site was his. Explanation, please? No? Although PreThinking calls Pogue's review (non-outsourced version here) "very neutral," Observes Edible Apple: "Overall, Pogue seems to really like the Pre, giving it high marks for its hardware design and Palm's new Web OS. The biggest negative Pogue sees is its lackuster battery life, which he calls the 'Pre's heartbreaker.'" At All Things D, Walter Mossberg calls the Pre "potentially the strongest rival to the iPhone to date, provided it attracts lots of third-party apps, which it sorely lacks at launch." But a Business Week reviewer is underwhelmed: "The growing list of disappointments undermines what everyone saw as a fairy tale comeback."

imageAnticipation among shoppers has been ...what's a word that does not mean "rabid"?  Gizmodo features a deranged maniac guy named Lou who got a permanent tattoo of a Pre on his shoulder, apparently to get one free: "Save $199—lose a lifetime of dignity," Giz concludes. TinyComb claims an exclusive photo of the first person to line up outside a store in hopes of scoring a Pre-fix (sittin' there since Monday). Dude offers this excuse: "I hear there is only going to be 4 phones at each spot, and I'm GETTING MINE!" Dude, here's an idea for something else you can get. Maybe he got his store-inventory forecast from EverythingPre, which displays what it claims are internal Best Buy lists of how many Pre units will be at each store.

clip_image006Elsewhere, the E3 video game announce-o-rama is rocking Los Angeles this week. Joystiq got its hands on Beatles Rock Band: "With any luck, MTV Games will decide to give us a closer look into the campaign mode before the September 9 release date. Otherwise, we're feeling a bit ... skeptical." Binge Gamer offers a review of LEGO Rock Band: "It's Rock Band... with LEGOs... Despite having absolutely no reason to exist, LEGO Rock Band is actually quite fun." DJ Hero (now you can pretend to be a guy who plays other people's music!) seems to work but Engadget had to watch a company rep play it. Hecklerspray says all that's groovy, but "trailers for Left 4 Dead 2, Crackdown 2, Forza 3, Final Fantasy XIII, Splinter Cell: Conviction, Joyride and Halo 3 ODST, all looked pretty impressive, adding "the star of the show for us was Modern Warfare 2, which simply looks brilliant." Gizmodo lists five things that should have been at E3, starting with price cuts: "The financiapocalypse has yielded no price cuts for ailing gamers from Sony, Nintendo, or Microsoft."

clip_image007So did you hear that the Chinese government, in anticipation of the 20th anniversary of Tiananmen Square massacre this week, blocked access to Twitter, Flickr, Bing, Hotmail, Wordpress, YouTube and other information sharing tools? That's shocking! Bing? And many native websites in China had "a period of inaccessibility," Danwei reported. CircleID presents an illustration done by a Singaporean illustrator in China that makes the unjust repression look unbelievably cute. "The bird bound and gagged represents Twitter. The crab catching the bird is a well-established symbol for censorship used by Chinese netizens." Shanghaiist offered some online workarounds and said "Our fingers are crossed." Hope nobody gets shot for Tweeting.

image We have other global threats to worry about too, like bloggers' conspiracy theories surrounding missing Air France flight 447. Dissident Voice is a surprising voice of reason in explaining: "Speculation about what may have happened centers on lightning causing a massive electrical surge that caused the failure of fly-by-wire flight controls." Others are making a federal case of it. "Could Air France flight 447 have been bombed?" asks Stupid Celebrities Gossip (our #1 source for aviation news). "Reports have been emerging about a bomb threat being called in [for an Air France flight] just five days before Flight 447 crashed into the Atlantic Ocean." Hmm. (A British Mail Online report says oil slicks in the water make the bombing theory unlikely.) But what about this: "the domain name for flight 447 was registered in September 2007. Coincidence? Maybe," says Atlas Shrugs. "Iranian Kari Bian, who makes movies about Israelis and Palestinians, registered the domain" Threat Level reports that Bian calls the connection coincidental: "It's just an accident (that there's a connection)," he said. "I have nothing to do with anything. I feel really bad for that flight."

clip_image009And if you need a disaster closer to home, it's time to check out a video of Joe Jonas dancing In a leotard. "Just when we thought Beyonce's 'Single Ladies' was out of our head and we were finished seeing every moron with a leotard and webcam dance to it... Joe Jonas had to drum up all those disturbing memories by putting a purity ring on it himself," TMZ sobs.

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