Archives : Aug-2019

first_imgGoogle has also upgraded the standard browser to include tab browsing, form auto-fill, syncing with your Google Chrome bookmarks, and private browsing. Gmail and YouTube have also been refined to give you a new 3D experience.Honeycomb will also feature the latest Google Maps 5 with 3D interactions and offline reliability, Google Talk will permit users to video and voice chat with any other Google Talk enabled devices such as a PC, tablet, etc. Users will also enjoy having access to over 3 million Google eBooks. Honeycomb has already been featured on Motorola’s latest tablet, Xoom which was presented Wednesday at CES 2011. The short video below will give you an idea of the new user experience with Honeycomb. ( — CES 2011: Google released a sneak peek at Honeycomb, the next version of their Android platform, designed from the ground up. Honeycomb has been designed for devices with larger screen sizes, particularly tablets. © 2010 Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) is rumored to launch in March of this year. Additional information will be released on the web as soon as Google makes it official. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img Motorola unveils tablet computer, the Xoom Citation: Google’s Android 3.0, Honeycomb designed for tablets (w/ Video) (2011, January 6) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Google provided a glimpse of Android 3.0 Honeycomb, as previewed at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas. Google has developed a brand new, truly virtual and holographic user interface that will make many of Android’s existing features really stand out on Honeycomb. Some noticeable features include: refined multi-tasking and notifications, home screen customization with a 3D experience and redesigned widgets that are richer and interactive. last_img read more

first_img(—When an earthquake strikes, damage to buildings such as nuclear power stations can worsen the catastrophe. Researchers from France’s Institut Fresnel and the French division of Menard, a ground-improvement specialist company, have developed an invisibility cloak that could protect buildings during an earthquake by redirecting seismic waves around them. The researchers studied invisibility cloaks that make objects invisible to light waves. These cloaks are made of metamaterials smaller than the wavelength of light. They divert light waves around themselves, so light cannot reach anything hidden inside.While invisibility cloaks are standard fare in science fiction and fantasy, in reality, it is very difficult to create a metamaterial capable of manipulating light waves, which are extremely short and travel very long distances. Seismic waves, however, are longer than light waves and do not travel as far, so developing a seismic metamaterial could be easier.Last year, physicists at Mokpo National Maritime University in South Korea and the Australian National University in Canberra developed a model for a seismic invisibility cloak. The French team, however, was the first to build and test one. The team simulated an earthquake by using a vibraphone to create 50-hertz acoustic waves across a silty clay alluvial basin, up to 200 meters deep, near Grenoble, France. Acoustic sensors measured the waves’ movement.They then created a metamaterial by drilling three rows of holes into the basin. There were 10 holes in each row, spaced 1.73 meters apart. Each hole was about five meters deep and had an average diameter of 320 millimeters. When the French team re-transmitted the 50-hertz waves, energy levels near the source of the waves almost doubled, indicating that the metamaterial was reflecting the waves, which barely made it past the second row of holes. While a seismic metamaterial like this might eventually save lives during an earthquake, engineers and physicists still need to address some important issues. For example, it is impossible to predict the length of an earthquake’s seismic waves. This makes it difficult to determine how far to space the holes in the array. A way to get around this might be to arrange the holes to match the resonance of the building needing protection.There is also a danger that seismic waves reflected off a building could damage nearby buildings. A metamaterial that absorbs, rather than reflects, seismic waves might be a better choice. Copyright 2013 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of One size cloaks all This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img Citation: How to prevent earthquake damage: make buildings invisible (2013, February 12) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore further More information: read more

first_imgDescribed as, ‘A theatrical journey through Marguerite Duras approach to love and desire,’ French play, created in English Gates to India, had its world premier at the residence of the French Ambassador on 9 March. The text of the play is based on India Song and The Vice-Consul written by Marguerite Duras and directed by Eric Vigner. The cast comprised of Nandita Das (playing the role of Anne-Marie Stretter), Suhaas Ahuja (The Vice-Consul), Subodh Maskara (Ambassador/Club Secretary), Jim Sarbh (Charles Rossett) and Neeraj Kabi (Peter Morgan). Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’For the first time on the eve of celebrating the centenary of Duras’ birth, the India dreamt in The Vice-Consul and the India Song by the author of Hiroshima mon amor meets the reality of India. Duras is one of the most important French authors of the 20th century.The play revolves around the story of a love lived in an India of the 1930’s, fixed in the climax of passion. As the scenes unfold in dialogues intertwined with the suffocating heat of India, the travels and the travails of the Vice-Consul who on an assuming sultry evening in the then Calcutta, screams out his love for Anne Marie Stretter. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixNandita Das as Annie Marie Stretter is the ultimate Durassian heroine who travels through the writer’s body of work and Suhaas Ahuja as the Vice-Consul captures the imagination of the audience with his stoic resilience that crumbles in to a haunting and troubled expression of love.The play will be travelling to Mumbai and Kolkata as well and to give Gates to India the right feel, specific venues have been selected for both the cities. While in Mumbai, the Prithvi Theatre and the NCPA will host the play; Kolkata will have the tale unfold in the courtyard of Tagore House.The Delhi chapter had the site-specific piece unfold in the Residence of the French Ambassador on a perfect Saturday evening. Starting off in the interiors, the story and the play travels to the garden where the climactic end braces the characters.The play is on from the 9 to the 13 at the Residence of the French Ambassador, 7 pm onwards. Entry is by invitation only, so make sure you bag one.last_img read more

first_imgCoal India Ltd (CIL) on Saturday reported a 5 per cent production increase to 102.42 million tonnes (mt) in the second quarter of the current financial year compared to 97.6 million tones in the corresponding period of the previous fiscal. Offtake was 110.42 million tonnes compared with 109 million tonnes in the review period.There was a 28 per cent fall in CIL’s consolidated net profit to Rs 2,192 crore in the second quarter of this fiscal due to higher expenses. The world’s largest coal miner had clocked a profit of Rs 3,052 crore in the same quarter previous year.Its net profit took a beating as the company’s second quarter expenses rose by almost 8 per cent compared to the flat growth in sales in the review period. Total expenses increased to Rs 14,144 crore in the July-September quarter of this year from Rs 13,112 crore in the same period last year.The bulk of the expenses were on employee benefits, on which the company spent Rs 7,286 crore.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: In a tragic incident, an 8-year-old girl from Bhatpara in North 24-Parganas died while enacting a scene that she had recently watched in a television serial.A pall of gloom descended over the family members of the victim and the neighbours as the news of the little girl reached the neighbourhood. Her parents are still to recover the shock they had gone through. The victim, Puja Majumdar (8) was a class II student, who had picked up the habit of watching serials as she used to see her family members involved in a similar activity. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsBut her parents could never expect that this habit of watching television would be this fatal for the child.It is suspected that she was trying to enact a scene of strangulation when a piece of cloth got stuck around her throat resulting in choking. Police are yet to confirm the exact reason that led to her death. They said the victim girl, a resident of Natunpally area of Bhatpara under Barrackpore sub-division, was alone inside a room when the incident took place. Some of the family members found that he was hanging against a window on Monday evening. She was immediately rushed to Bhatpara state general hospital where the doctors pronounced her brought dead. After being informed, police reached the house and started a detailed probe into the incident. The body was later sent for post-mortem. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedAccording to the preliminary investigation, police have come to know that the child was rebuked by her mother on Sunday.On Monday morning, she went to the house of one of her neighbours to watch television.Since her return, she was inside a room and did not talk to the family members. People thought she might have been playing with her toys as she often does.Her mother was away from home on Monday evening while her elder sister was studying in another room when the incident occurred.Police are yet to investigate if the child committed suicide after being rebuked by her mother or it was the result of the enactment of a TV serial scene.Police are also probing whether it is an accident that happened while playing with a piece of cloth. The family members of the victim told the police that she used to watch various crime related serials and often enacted them.last_img read more

first_imgX-Men actor Halle Berry is reportedly planning to finalize divorce with husband Olivier Martinez.The Monster’s Ball star sparked the rumours after she was spotted without her wedding ring when stepping out in Los Angeles reported Aceshowbiz.“It seems Halle and Olivier have finally hit the end of the road. They’ve weathered a lot of ups and downs in their relationship – but recently, Olivier has been completely MIA!” a family friend said. “Halle is telling pals she worries that Olivier’s runaway temper could put her kids at risk. They’ve just been delaying the inevitable split,” the insider said.last_img read more

first_imgSaudi authorities said on Saturday the annual haj pilgrimage would continue despite a crane collapse that killed 107 people at Mecca’s Grand Mosque, where crowds returned to pray a day after the disaster.India’s Ministry of External Affairs said that there were two Indian women among the 107 people killed in the collapse. Around 15 Indian nationals were injured and were being treated in hospitals, said a statement posted on Twitter.Hundreds of thousands of pilgrims have already arrived in Mecca for the haj, one of the world’s largest religious gatherings which last year drew two million worshippers. Also Read – Punjab on alert after release of excess water from Bhakra damParts of the Grand Mosque, one of Islam’s holiest sites, remained sealed off Saturday around the remains of the red and white crane, accentuating the crush of humanity inside. Worshippers thronged the mosque as the midday call to prayer sounded, said sources.Indonesians and Indians were among those killed when the crane collapsed during a storm on what is the main weekly prayer day for Muslims. Around 200 others were injured.A Saudi official said this year’s haj, expected to start on September 21, would proceed despite the tragedy.“It definitely will not affect the haj this season and the affected part will probably be fixed in a few days,” said the official, who declined to be named.last_img read more

first_imgCanning (WB): One person was killed and two others received bullet injuries after a clash broke out between two groups in South 24 Parganas district on Sunday, police said. The incident happened at Canning bus stand under the jurisdiction of Canning police station. Trouble began after the two groups, belonging to the same party, clashed at a rally organised by its youth wing, a police officer said. Shots were fired during the clash and 18-year-old Mizanur Rehman Sardar was killed on the spot, the officer said, adding, two other persons also suffered bullet injuries. They have been admitted to Canning sub-divisional hospital, he said.last_img read more

first_imgWomen often tend to chop off their hair to avoid the strenous process of styling long hair. And we all know that dealing with the loss of a beloved possession is quite a hefty burden. Without hastily taking the harsh decision of doing away with the long flowing hair, one may consider a few simple and pretty hairstyles which will help in maintaining the hair as well as be an addition to your beauty. If you are planning to go on a trip or a party or just a simple outing with friends in the evening, make sure you have some easy yet pretty hairdos in your kitty before stepping out. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Go wherever your heart wishes and look stunning in all your travel, party and casual gathering  photographs with the picture perfect hairdos.Head hair experts from advanced hair studios shares how to achieve the goal of a perfect hairdo:Natural waves This is one of the best and easy hair styles for vacations. Simply keep the hair loose and apply some hair products like hair mousse on damp hair and let it dry naturally. This is the best hair style to be carried in hot and humid weather, without worrying about your hair getting frizzy. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixTwisty ponytail When travelling on long trips, simply tie your hair up in a ponytail to avoid messy hair. But to give it a twist, we suggest an easy and trendy version of it by twisting hair twice or thrice and then tying up in a ponytail. You can do it high or low as per your face structure.Funky braids Be it a night party or a luncheon, braids do wonders on girls. From a non-fussy braid to loose braids, one can look alluring on every occasion. Among other trending styles are ‘side braids’ which are quick and stylish. Simply do this braid by twisting them up in different directions and putting hair pins wherever required.last_img read more

first_imgResearchers have identified a complex network in the brain that has revealed why artificial sweeteners may not be the best way to slim down. Artificial sweeteners are substitutes for sugar that provides a sweet taste while containing significantly less food energy.According to the researchers, the brain responds to artificially sweetened food by telling the animal it hasn’t eaten enough energy, thus increasing the appetite and prompting them to actually eat more.  It senses and integrates the sweetness and energy content of food, said the study conducted on mice and fruit flies.“After chronic exposure to a diet that contained the artificial sweetener sucralose, we saw that animals began eating a lot more,” said lead researcher Greg Neely, Associate Professor at the University of Sydney in Australia. “Artificial sweeteners can actually change how animals perceive the sweetness of their food, with a discrepancy between sweetness and energy levels prompting an increase in caloric consumption,” Neely added.The findings showed that inside the brain’s reward centres, sweet sensation is integrated with energy content. When sweetness versus energy is out of balance for a period of time, the brain recalibrates and increases total calories consumed. For the study, fruit flies were exposed to a diet laced with artificial sweetener for prolonged periods (more than five days). The flies were then found to consume 30 per cent more calories when they were then given naturally sweetened food. “The chronic consumption of the artificial sweetener actually increases the sweet intensity of real nutritive sugar which then increases the animal’s overall motivation to eat more food,” Neely stated in the work published in the journal Cell Metabolism.Further, the artificial sweeteners were also found to promote hyperactivity, insomnia as well as decrease the sleep quality – behaviours consistent with a mild starvation or fasting state.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: The state Information Technology and Electronics (IT&E) department will come up with a centre of excellence on Blockchain in collaboration with the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI).The centre of excellence will be imparting advice and training in blockchain technology to all stakeholders. “We are expecting to come up with such a centre of excellence on Blockchain by the end of this financial year. We are also holding talks with Calcutta University for a centre of excellence on Quantum Computing,” a senior official of state IT& E department said on the sidelines of the two-day Global Blockchain Congress that kicked off at Biswa Bangla Convention Centre on Tuesday. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeIt may be mentioned that Brazil is the only country in the globe that has an academy on Blockchain. Industries including IT professionals seek advice and look for solutions from this academy. Kolkata will be the second place in the world which will come up with a centre of excellence on this emerging technology. The government has taken a focused approach toward leveraging Blockchain technology to establish Bengal as a front-runner in becoming an emerging Technology Hub. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedAmong all the financial institutions, almost 50 percent of the banks are expected to use this technology by 2020 and there is a huge transformation expected to take place in the non-financial sector as well within next few years. “Blockchain is expected to create a significant impact in the job market as knowledge of this disruptive technology is in high demand in numerous sectors of the industry,” a senior official of IT&E department said.last_img read more

first_imgPlaying the augmented reality game Pokemon Go with children may help parents spend more quality time with their family and live a healthier life, a new study has found. Researchers from the University of Washington surveyed and interviewed parents who play Pokemon Go with their families.Some parents said the interactive and mobile nature of the game made them feel better about engaging in that type of gameplay, as opposed to more sedentary forms of “screen time.” Also Read – Add new books to your shelfMany set limits to prevent kids from becoming so absorbed in the game that they ignored cars or other real-world hazards, as well as responsibilities.Those included setting time constraints, requiring kids to do chores or homework first, shutting down the mobile device if kids did not give it back when asked or parents staying in control of the smartphone while the family played.Yet many parents – particularly moms of boys, fathers of girls and parents of teenaged children – reported spending more quality time with their children as a result of playing Pokemon Go together and talking more than usual, both about the game itself and about other things in their lives. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveParents also appreciated how the game motivated both them and their children to go outside and exercise in ways that were convenient and fit into their lives, as their children displayed new found enthusiasm for walking rather than driving to dinner or playgrounds. For some participants, the game led to walking thousands more steps per day, and one father reported that his 11-year-old daughter had lost 12 pounds.”Location-based augmented reality games are pretty different than sitting in front of a TV or playing a typical video game, so we were interested in the way kids and their parents were sharing those experiences together,” said Kiley Sobel, a doctoral student at University of Washington. In the game, players use a mobile device’s GPS ability to locate, capture, battle, and train virtual creatures, called Pokémon, who appear on the screen as if they were in the same real-world location as the player.”People still don’t really know how to build tech that works well for families, so when this game came out of the blue and really caught on, we wanted to look at what its ingredients for success were,” Sobel said.In follow-up interviews with families who had begun playing Pokemon Go together, almost all parents had safety concerns about the game, from children not paying attention to where they were going to interacting with strangers.To mitigate those concerns, many parents imposed limits or rules on the gameplay, such as only allowing older children to travel a certain distance from the home and requiring younger children to only play on a parent’s device.However, many parents reported net benefits from the overall experience, including having a shared interest with their children, particularly at ages when communication can become tricky.Since the Pokemon franchise was first introduced in 1995, some parents had also grown up with the characters, which heightened their interest in playing the new game.The parents’ prior knowledge about and experience with Pokemon characters often led their kids to view them as valuable “experts” who could teach them.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: A person has reportedly drowned while bathing in the sea at Digha on Friday afternoon. He was rescued by the ‘nuliahs’ and rushed to Digha State General Hospital (DSGH) where the attending doctor declared him brought dead.According to sources, one Shankar Deb, aged around 44 years, had gone to Digha with his family on Thursday. He had rented a room at a hotel located in New Digha. On Friday afternoon, he went to Old Digha along with his wife and five-year-old daughter Atrika. There, he consumed alcohol and went to Ghat number 1 to bathe in the sea. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataWhen he was walking towards the sea with his daughter on his shoulder, his wife tried to stop him as he was not able to walk straight since he was in an inebriated state. But Shankar did not bother to listen. When he reached near the water, some ‘nuliahs’ and civic volunteers saw him and asked him not to venture into the sea. They tried to reach Shankar but before they could get to him, he reportedly went into the water with Atrika. Just after that, a huge wave came and landed on both. As the force of the wave was very strong, both Shankar and Atrika were beginning to get washed away. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateSeeing them drowning, the ‘nuliahs’ ran to their rescue. To save his daughter, Shankar threw Atrika towards the ‘nuliahs’ who got hold of her. Just after saving his daughter, the ‘nuliahs’ went in the water with safety measures to save Shankar. After a few minutes, Shankar was rescued and taken to the DSGH where he was declared brought dead by the doctor. An Unnatural Death (UD) case has been lodged. It is not clear whether Shankar had died due to excessive consumption of alcohol or by drowning. To identify the cause, sleuths are waiting for the autopsy report. According to police sources, despite repeated requests and warnings, Shankar did not bother to listen to either his wife or the security persons and ventured into the sea in an inebriated state that proved very risky and he ended up paying with his life.last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee met with poll whiz Prashant Kishor at Nabanna on Thursday afternoon, whose latest success is ‘Project Jagan Mohan Reddy’ in Andhra Pradesh.After a reported two-hour meeting in Kolkata, Kishor signed up as the party’s poll strategist for the Assembly elections scheduled to be held in 2021. Kishor will kick off his assignment very soon and his primary job, as per party sources, will be to prepare a plan to counter the BJP which had bagged as many as 18 seats in the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections with the ruling TMC winning 22 seats. In the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, BJP could manage only two seats in the state while the TMC had won 34. In terms of 294 Assembly seats, the saffron party could manage lead in as many as 121 Assembly segments against the TMC’s 164. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataSources in Nabanna informed that Kishor was taken to the Chief Minister’s chamber at Nabanna by Abhishek Banerjee who is the president of All India Trinamool Youth Congress. According to party sources, the two deliberated over the causes of TMC’s performance in the parliamentary polls and Kishor explained his readings seat by seat for Bengal. It may be mentioned that TMC had sought the assistance of Kishor even in 2016 but the deal did not materialise due to the latter’s reluctance. Kishor had then just bagged the Congress contract for the 2017 Uttar Pradesh elections at that time. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateKishor is credited with successfully organising the political campaigns for Jagan Mohan Reddy-led YSR Congress in Andhra Pradesh. The YSR Congress won 22 out of 25 Lok Sabha seats and 151 out of 175 Assembly seats. The incumbent Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu’s party was voted out of power in the parliamentary polls. It is learnt that after the convincing victory of Reddy, few more political parties in the state have been approaching Kishor for being their poll strategist. Kishor is credited with handling Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s poll campaign in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. He joined Nitish Kumar and strategised the election campaign for his party during the 2015 Bihar Assembly elections. His venture to revive the Congress in Uttar Pradesh in 2017, however, was a flop. Kishor had joined politics last year as the vice-president of Bihar’s Janata Dal-United.last_img read more

first_imgCalcutta Boy’s School recently presented their annual concert ‘Crescendo’ in the school premises. in which students of the primary school collectively gathered to celebrate the Greek culture and enact the famous Greek myth known as Pandora’s Box.Arindam Sil, Film Actor, Director, and Producer graced the occasion as Chief Guest along with Raja McGee, Principal and Secretary, Calcutta Boy’s School; and Professor Maria Fernandez, Vice-Chairperson, Women’s Commission, Government of West Bengal. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfIt was a grand celebration, with almost 400 students taking part in the concert from various classes and age groups. The dance forms such as Greek folk dance, little Latino Dancers, Fiery Flamenco, Zorbas put up by the pre-primary students precede the main play, ‘Pandora’s Box’ which conveys the important message that Hope is a blessing bestowed upon us by God which dispels negativity. “This is a great initiative for the children in nurturing their skills. Books should be more provided to them than mobile phones this time, for their betterment in life,” said Arindam Sil. “This is a great opportunity for our students to showcase their talent which will, in turn, infuse them with confidence and hone their potentials,” said Raja McGee, Principal and Secretary, Calcutta Boy’s School.last_img read more

first_imgArchaeological discoveries of the Anglo-Saxon world have provided useful insight into the treasuries of this eminent historical period. One significant yet mystical treasure from this era is the Alfred Jewel. The Alfred Jewel is a 9th-century object that was commissioned by King Alfred who later used it as a pointer to help with reading the Bible and other religious texts. At the time, these were copied by hand and often difficult to read. Alfred ordered these texts to be distributed around his kingdom because he considered them to be sources of enlightenment.The intricate piece was created by an artisan who worked under the patronage of the West Saxon court. The base of the jewel is in the form of a dragon-like head with a socket for its mouth.Alfred Jewel found at the Ashmolean, Oxford, UK. Photo by Mkooiman CC BY-SA 4.0Presumably, the pointer was fixed into the socket and held in place with a rivet. The pointer’s body depicts a figure in a seated position laid under a polished quartz crystal in the shape of a teardrop, framed in gold.The teardrop-shaped Alfred Jewel is made of enamel overlaid with polished quartz, encased in gold.Initially, the figure was interpreted be that of St. Cuthbert, who was possibly the most important saint of Anglo-Saxon England. However, today the figure is widely thought to depict Christ in Majesty. Other historians suggest the image is a representation of Sight because of its similarity to the 9th century silver Fuller Brooch.Drawing of the Alfred JewelThe frame of the Alfred Jewel is carved the Old English letters AELFRED MEC HEHT GEWYRCAN, meaning “Alfred ordered me to be made.”The inscription on the Alfred Jewel flattened.King Alfred commenced his rule in 871 as the King of Wessex after the succession of his brother King Æthelred. Wessex was often attacked by the Vikings which challenged Alfred, who soon proved to be a powerful leader. By 886 he unified the territories of southern England and formalized its boundaries.Photo of the Alfred Jewel taken from the front. Photo by Geni CC BY-SA 4.0As a ruler, Alfred was a great diplomat, whose strategic approach provided him with a strong alliance with the neighboring kingdom of Mercia after he gave the hand of his daughter Æthelflaed to the Mercian leader. Alfred was a unique leader of his time who recognized the power and significance of education.The Alfred Jewel, a piece of 9th century Anglo-Saxon jewelry in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford. Photo by RIchard M Buck CC BY SA 3.0Combining wisdom and literacy he strove towards an enlightened leadership and well-educated court who would improve the power of his kingdom. King Alfred died in 899 after a bloody battle against invading Scandinavian warriors.The Alfred Jewel, seen in profile.King Alfred began his education as a young man. At first, he learned to read Old English but then advanced in Latin when he was older. His engagement in educational work led him to arrange and actively participate in the translation of Latin religious texts to Old English, aiming to spread wisdom further.6 of the Biggest Treasure Troves Ever DiscoveredReportedly, every Episcopal See in Alfred’s kingdom received a copy of Pastoral Care which was written by Pope Gregory the Great. Along with the copy came an aestel. The aestel was a valuable object kept near books and used as a pointer for reading.The Alfred Jewel is described as “a matchless piece of goldsmith’s work” by the British Archaeology Collection at the Ashmolean Museum.The Alfred Jewel was one of those aestels, discovered in a field in the late 17th century in North Petherton, a small rural town in the county of Somerset. The place of its discovery reveals an intriguing background story referring to King Alfred. North Petherton is near Athelney Abbey — the refuge from where Alfred launched his counter-attack on the Great Army of the Danes. In 1718, the jewel was presented to the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford where it is still displayed today.A copy of the Alfred Jewel. Photo by Wellcome Images CC By 4.0According to some theories regarding the use the Alfred Jewel, this golden marvel was at mounted the center of a royal crown or pendant. However, these theories were quickly debunked and replaced by the claim that the object was actually used as an aestel.Read another story from us: A flea market ring picked up for $13 was sold for $850,000 at Sotheby’sThe millennium remembrance of King’s Alfred death in 1901 prompted the creation of Alfred Jewel replicas, made by traditional jewelers Elliot Stocks of London and Payne’s of Oxford. The Ashmolean department of conservation also created several replicas.The cryptic treasure of the Alfred Jewel bears witness to the cultural awareness and achievements of King Alfred as well as the spread of learning through the use of Anglo-Saxon vernacular.last_img read more

first_imgDuring the 1620s, Swedish king Gustavus Adolphus ordered the construction of a new warship to serve his people’s defense. The warship picked the name Vasa and its construction was hurried as Swedes were in those years waging war with the now historic bi-confederation entity reigned by one monarch–the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.Vasa’s port bow. Photo By JavierKohen – CC BY-SA 3.0Upon its creation, the Vasa warship was described with several several superlatives such as being the greatest and most capable war vessel at the disposal of the Swedish navy.The ship came to symbolize Sweden’s Great Power Period, in which the Nordic country controlled most of the Baltic Sea and forged its status as one of Europe’s most powerful kingdoms.Warship in Vasa museum in StockholmThe ship’s appearance was stunning, measuring 226 feet in length, 164 feet in height, and weighed more than 1,200 tons. With some 64 cannons installed on it, it promised whoever tried to mess with Vasa would face serious consequences. As it turned out, it never came to that.The ship, against everyone’s expectations, proved to be fallible and faced an end that might easily remind people of the story of the RMS Titanic. Vasa did not hit an iceberg but still ignominiously sunk on its very first journey.Photo by Jorge Láscar CC BY 2.0It was an embarrassing incident, overseen by crowds of Swedes who had gathered at the port of Stockholm from where the ship set sails towards the open seas for the very first and last time on August 10, 1628.There were also prominent guests in the onlooking crowd, including royals and ambassadors from other countries. Having not sailed even one nautical mile, the mighty warship suddenly plunged into the water.The preserved Vasa in the main hall of Vasa Museum seen from above the bow. Photo by Peter Isotalo CC BY-SA 3.0Accounts point to errors happening during construction. The vessel was the work of a Dutch shipbuilder. The contract was signed early in the year 1625 and Vasa was one of four vessels agreed on the list with shipbuilder Henrik Hybertsson.The original arrangement was to have two smaller and two bigger vessels. Hybertsson died shortly after undertaking the project, and the construction effort was taken over by his assistant, Hein Jakobsson.Illustration of a Swedish Emperors: Gustav Vasa, Gustav Adolf, Dronning Christine, A. Oxenstierna, Charles Gustav, Charles IX, TorstensonConstruction plans were obviously modified, as Vasa, which was supposed to be one of the two smaller ships, appeared to be fitting the pair of two bigger ships upon completion.The ship came out much heavier than planned. It also carried extra weights such as hundreds of sculptures and at least 100 tons of ballast.Vasa warship canon hatches detailMore evidence shows that the Swedes had the warship tested and noticed something was wrong with it, but under the pushy demands of the king, Vasa was prematurely sailed into the open sea and towards its premature doom.A strong gust of wind was enough to overturn the vessel. When water began to enter, all it took was a few minutes for it to sink 105 feet below the surface.Vasa warship canon hatchesThe Swedes were quick to dismiss and forget Vasa. This was to be their new favorite war toy and national pride and joy, yet it now lay sunk on the bottom of the ocean on its maiden voyage. It was a scandal that hurt the reputation of the kingdom, as well as having huge economic repercussions. Vasa had costed a fortune.While an investigation was ushered in immediately after the ship sank, little could be done. The main shipbuilder had already been dead for over a year.A 1:10 scale model of the ship on display at the Vasa Museum. The sculptures are painted in what are believed to be the original colors. Photo Credit Peter Isotalo CC BY 3.0There were efforts to recover Vasa from the sea floor immediately, but the task seemed impossible with the limited technology of the time.By the 1660s, a group of divers was able to retrieve the cannons, using an early model of the diving bell. The shipwreck was eventually left abandoned and forgotten…until the mid-20th-century.Illustration from a treatise on salvaging from 1734, showing the traditional method of raising a wreck with the help of anchors and ships or hulks as pontoons, basically the same method that was used to raise Vasa in the 20th century.In 1961, a few years after the shipwreck was rediscovered and identified as the lost 17th-century Vasa vessel, Sweden finally managed to recover it.Although Vasa had for centuries remained submerged in the sea, upon its reappearance it seemed positively in pristine condition.The underwater position where it had sunk was key. The water was dark enough to stop ultraviolet light from protruding and affecting the ship’s wood.Vasa’s port side. Photo Credit OneHungLow CC BY-SA 3.0The chilly temperature of the Baltic was also soothing, preventing any rapid deterioration processes.Having sunk close enough to the harbor, there was enough pollution in the water to bleach most parasites that may have wanted to feast on the wood of the wreck.The inside of the lower gun deck looking toward the bow. Photo by Peter Isotalo CC BY-SA 3.0But some decaying issues began once the ship was taken out of the water.  Vasa underwent restoration at that point and was treated with substances to protect the wood, however, lab research later confirmed that the wood of the ship was struggling with extremely slow, ongoing fiber degradation.There is no threat of immediate collapse, but this has remained a major occupation for conservationists who are still looking for the best way to stop the risky process.Read another story from us: Incredibly Well-Preserved 16th Century Warship DiscoveredShould the Vasa museum where the shipwreck is famously displayed in Stockholm allow its prime exhibit to perish for the second time, it would be a huge national loss. The Vasa goes a long way and has a special history with the Swedes as well as being one of the best preserved historical ships in all of the world.last_img read more

first_imgTime can be a complete menace to works of art. Dust, mold, mildew, dirt and even the varnish originally used on a painting can become thick and dark over the years, eventually obscuring or even completely hiding from view the original work. Art conservation is a highly skilled and painstaking trade, in which the layers of grime are removed one time section at a time until the original piece is restored to its former glory.However, despite what may have originally been good intentions, not all art conservation is successful, or even done professionally. In other cases, works of art are destroyed deliberately, as a political statement or act of violence. Here are just a few examples of works of art ruined by human intervention.Ecce Homo by Elias Garcia MartinezThis painting was destroyed in August 2012 by Cecília Gimenez, in a disastrous restoration attempt.Originally painted in 1930, this fresco of Jesus adorns the walls in the Sanctuary of Mercy church in Borja, Spain. An attempt was made in 2012 to restore the fresco by Cecilia Giménez, a senior untrained in art conservation.Unfortunately, it did not go well. Her restoration effort has been compared to a monkey, and the painting is now sometimes known as Ecce Mono, or Behold the Monkey.View of the deteriorated version of ‘Ecce Homo’ by 19th century painter Elias Garcia Martinez, at the Borja Church in Zaragoza on August 28, 2012. AFP PHOTO / CESAR MANSOThanks to social media, news of the botched restoration spread quickly, and the priest of the church, Father Florencio Garces, believed that the fresco should be covered up.However, the image has now become a tourist draw; in 2013, it brought around 40,000 visitors to the church and generated more than €50,000 for a local charity. There is now an interpretation centre on site, as it continues to draw visitors from around the world.King Tut’s beardGolden Mask of Tutankhamun in the Egyptian Museum. Photo by Carsten Frenzl CC BY 2.0The golden burial mask of King Tutankhamen is arguably one of the most well-known pieces of art in the world. However, the beard of the mask was accidentally broken off in 2014, and workers tried to reattach it using epoxy, which in turn caused extensive damage to the priceless artifact.Tutankhamun’s mask.A team from Germany and Egypt began a professional restoration of the mask in October 2015, with the aim to not only reattach the beard properly but also conduct a complete study of the mask, which had not been done before. The restoration took nine weeks and the beard was successfully reattached using simple beeswax, which would have been a common material in ancient Egypt and is less likely to cause damage to the metal on the mask.The Virgin and Child with St Anne and St John the Baptist, by Leonardo da VinciLeonardo da Vinci – Virgin and Child with Ss Anne and John the Baptist.In 1987, a man by the name of Robert Cambridge walked into the National Gallery in London, England, with a sawn-off shotgun and fired directly at a work by Leonardo da Vinci, called The Virgin and Child with St. Anne and St. John the Baptist.Mentally ill, Cambridge wanted to bring attention to the “political, social and economic conditions of Britain” with his actions. The shot shattered the glass covering the painting and caused significant damage to the work.Charing Cross tube station Bakerloo line platform motif, in this case depicting a sketch by Leonardo da Vinci. Photo by Sunil060902 CC BY-SA 3.0Fortunately, the shotgun pellets did not completely penetrate the laminated glass protecting the work, although a hole about 6” in diameter was torn in the Virgin’s robe. The multiple tiny fragments of paper that were left were painstakingly glued back together using surgical instruments and a magnifying glass. The restoration took several months. In the end, only about 1 square centimeter of the work was lost.Fountain by Marcel DuchampMarcel Duchamp Fountain, 1917, photograph by Alfred Stieglitz at 291 (art gallery) following the 1917 Society of Independent Artists exhibit, with entry tag visible. The backdrop is The Warriors by Marsden Hartley.A porcelain urinal, this sculpture was produced by Marcel Duchamp in 1917, and a replica is housed at the Tate Gallery in London, England (the original was lost in 1917).Being a urinal, the piece has been the subject of much controversy of the years, and in 1993 an artist named Kendell Geers urinated in a replica of the work at a show in Venice, Italy.Brian Eno in AVRO’s TopPop (Dutch television show) in 1974. Photo by AVRO CC BY-SA 3.0Musician Brian Eno also relieved himself in the Fountain replica while it was on exhibit at the MOMA that same year, as did another artist, Björn Kjelltoft, in Stockholm in 1999.Significant damage was done, however, in 2006 when performance artist Pierre Pinoncelli attacked the porcelain work with a hammer. It has since been restored.The Night Watch by Rembrandt van RijnThe Night Watch by Rembrandt van Rijn.One of the best-known paintings in the collection of Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum, The Night Watch has been attacked three times in its lifetime. In 1911, a shoemaker protesting his failure to find work slashed it with a knife.18th century copy with indication of the areas cut down in 1715.Then in 1975 it was slashed again, this time by a teacher, Wilhelmus de Rijk, who believed he was ordered to do it by God. The restoration of the large knife marks took four years, and evidence of the damage can still be seen on the painting.Night Watch in Amsterdam. Photo by Jason Raia CC BY 2.0In 1990, the work of art was sprayed with sulphuric acid by an escaped psychiatric patient. Fortunately the acid only penetrated the varnish and the work was fully restored. The painting is expected to undergo a full restoration beginning in July 2019, while remaining on public view.Pieta by MichelangeloThe statue features Mary holding her child’s dead body. Photo by Stanislav Traykov CC BY 2.5Housed in St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, Michelangelo’s Pieta was made for Cardinal Jean de Bilhères’ funeral monument, but was moved to the basilica in the 18th century. Interestingly, it is the only piece that Michelangelo ever signed.In 1972, a man named Laszlo Toth attacked the priceless sculpture with a geologist’s hammer, all the while shouting “I am Jesus Christ; I have risen from the dead!” As a result of his efforts, Mary’s arm was detached at the elbow, a chunk of her nose taken off and part of her eyelid.Laszlo Toth (Hungarian: Tóth László; July 1, 1938 – September 11, 2012), a Hungarian-born Australian geologist who achieved worldwide notoriety when he vandalized Michelangelo’s Pietà statue on May 21, 1972.Over 100 marble fragments flew off the sculpture, some of which were picked up by visitors to the Vatican, including Mary’s nose, which eventually had to be reconstructed from a block cut from the back of the piece.Laszlo Toth being removed from the Pietà on May 21, 1972.The repair of the statue was one of the most delicate and controversial art restorations in history. Some wanted the statue to remain damaged, as a sign of violent times; others believed it should be restored to its original state, but with a clear indication of what was original and what was new.In the end, the Vatican decided that the Pieta would be restored such that no traces of intervention would be visible.A detail view of the damaged statue, May 1972.Antonio Paolucci, director of the Vatican Museums, said that “with any other statue, leaving the wounds [of the attack] visible, however painful, could have been tolerated. But not with the Pieta, not this miracle of art.”10 months after the attack, the Pieta was back on display — although protected by bulletproof glass.Statue of St. George, SpainThe effigy before and after restoration. Photo by Julio Asuncion-ArtUs Restauración PatrimonioSimilarly to the Ecce Homo incident, an amateur attempted to restore a 16th century wooden sculpture of St. George in the Church of San Miguel de Estella in Navarre, Spain.Rather than contracting a professional conservator, a local art teacher was hired to conduct the restoration. While her intentions may have been noble, the statue has since been compared to a Disney character, with its new bright pink face, and red and grey suit of armour.Instead of cleaning the original polychrome paint, the teacher, known only as Carmen in the local media, simply painted over it. According to the town’s mayor, Koldo Leoz, the restoration was conducted without consultation and is “unfortunate” in its results.Read another story from us: Outrage as Spanish teacher botches restoration of 500-year-old effigy of St. GeorgeTaking it further, the Spanish Conservationists and Restorers Association (ACRE) contacted prosecutors to explore whether or not the failed restoration would constitute “a crime for damage against objects of cultural and historical value.” Ironically, prior to the restoration, the statue had been in rather good condition considering its age.last_img read more

first_imgIt’s time for Colin’s Blazin’ 5 Prediction Podcast, and his weekly sit down with RJ Bell from to see where there’s agreement and disagreement from the Vegas wiseguys on his NFL Week 8 Blazin’ 5 picks.Colin’s 21-14 on the season, and this week he’s taking the Falcons and Cowboys as road favorites; and the Texans, Panthers and Chargers as road dogs.Here are Colin’s Week 8 Blazin’ 5 plays. So, what do the wiseguys say?Falcons (-4) at JetsPanthers (+2) at Bucs Texans (+5.5) at SeahawksChargers (+7.5) at PatriotsCowboys (-2.5) at RedskinsThe Blazin’ 5 Prediction Podcast is available every Saturday through the end of the football season. Download and subscribe to it exclusively at, iHeart Radio, Google Play, or iTunes. Don’t be a mark!last_img read more

first_imgJay Cutler is reportedly retiring from the NFL, but has already found his calling as the best thing going on reality TV. He took heat throughout his 11-year NFL career for always looking like he hated being there, but the same ‘Smoking Jay’ attitude that earned him a reputation as a locker room cancer translates to television gold.It turns out Jay IS actually like that, and on the new season of his wife’s new show, Very Cavillari, he steals just about every scene he mopes his way through.  Like this little interaction with his wife where he discusses retiring from the NFL, and she tries to figure out what exactly he does all day is better than anything a Kardashian could pull off. Jay’s first priority is to be first in line to parent pickup at the kids’ school so he can beat all the moms.Jay Cutler. Star. There is no debate. Advertisement Here’s him helping Kristin pick out clothes. He doesn’t say everything looks “great.”Always be nice to your wife’s friends!I refuse to watch reality TV**unless it’s Jay Cutler and this— 🐐🐐PRESTI GOAT 🐐🐐 (@BarstoolOKC) July 9, 2018last_img read more