Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Motorola S11-Flex HD Bluetooth Stereo Headset review

Motorola S-11 Flex HD.


There are a lot of Bluetooth headsets available, in countless configurations. You've got plenty of selection, even if you're more interested in listening to music that you would be taking calls. The holy grail is finding one that's great at both. Enter the Motorola Flex-11 HD Bluetooth Stereo Headset, which fits the bill nicely.

They're stylish, they fit well, and most importantly they deliver high quality sound both for calls and the music you listen to on your Android phone or tablet. I've been testing my pair for a while, and I have to say I'm pretty pleased.

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Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/androidcentral/~3/Dga2yLWPvqw/story01.htm

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Monday, July 8, 2013

'Dexter' is 'perfect'?! 4 big moments this week


3 hours ago

People need to stop hatin' on serial killers! That's the takeaway from "Dexter" this week, anyway. The way Dr. Vogel fawned over Dexter Morgan, you'd think he broke into people's houses at night to deliver toys (olive-green henleys are the new Kris Kringle costume) instead of murdering folks.

But from the point of view of the neuropsychiatrist (whose perspective may be a bit clouded after keeping company with psychopaths all her life), we should be giving Dexter, not Santa Claus, milk and cookies for "making the world a better place."

Here are the four biggest moments from "Every Silver Lining" -- which also marked star Michael C. Hall's directorial debut!

1. Home movies: Dr. V videotaped all her sessions with Harry Morgan, proof for Dexter that she'd been shaping his destiny since he was a boy. And unlike his horrified and conflicted father, Vogel is downright proud of the man -- or "alpha wolf" --- he became. Dexter and his cohorts in crime are "an indispensable demographic" helping "the human race become civilized," she argued. And who are we to argue? We've been rooting for the vigilante for more than seven years now! Still, we might have to draw the line at calling him "perfect."

Image: Dexter, Dr. Vogel

Randy Tepper / Showtime

As far as Dr. Vogel is concerned, Dexter is exactly what this world needs.

2. Brain teaser: But Vogel has an ulterior motive behind her sick sweet talk: She needs Dexter's help because Miami's latest serial killer, dubbed the Brain Surgeon, is leaving trophies on her doorstep. And not just bits of his victims' brains -- also a DVD proving that the murdered suspect, Sussman, was coerced into killing the last victim.

Image: Miami Metro detectives

Randy Tepper / Showtime

The "Brain Surgeon" isn't giving the detectives a fully intact victim.

3. Brother in arms: Unlike Vogel, Deb doesn't want Dexter's help -- but she sure needs it. She found Briggs' stolen jewels in a storage unit (Miamians sure do like their storage facilities!), but El Sapo followed her and absconded with them -- and her gun -- after an epic fight. Worse, he's later found murdered in his car, which contains traces of her blood and her firearm in the glove compartment. To save his sister, Dex replaced her gun in the evidence room.

Image: Deb

Randy Tepper / Showtime

Deb hit yet a new low, but this time, Dex was able to help -- a little.

4. Sergeant Quinn: Speaking of stealing evidence, Quinn is finally getting some story lines that don't revolve around hangovers and dirty policing. Unfortunately, one of them is the old "sergeant's exam" plot. (See: "The Wire," "Homicide," etc.) Unfortunately, he and Batista (his future brother-in-law?) are still steps behind both Dexter and P.I. Deb, so it's debatable whether he deserves to be promoted from Deputy Dawg.

Image: Quinn

Randy Tepper / Showtime

Surprise! Quinn's story line this year doesn't involve being a dirty cop -- but he's still not the smartest one.

Killer sound bites:

  • "I don't take requests." -- Dexter when Vogel asks for his help
  • "Miami makes more corpses than sunburns." -- Dexter
  • "You're exactly what you need to be, Dexter: You're perfect." -- Vogel, whose infatuation with Dex is almost creepier than his sister's

What do you think Dr. Vogel's up to? Will she blackmail Dexter if he doesn't go along with his plans?

Source: http://www.today.com/entertainment/dexter-morgan-perfect-four-biggest-moments-latest-episode-6C10553862

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Monday, July 1, 2013

University Church holds first ever Soap-A-Thon

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Source: www.northwestohio.com --- Sunday, June 30, 2013
The first ever Soap-A-Thon was held today at University Church, in Toledo today. ...

Source: http://www.northwestohio.com/news/story.aspx?id=916061

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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Texas woman set to be 500th execution in state

HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) ? Texas, the nation's busiest death penalty state, is set to mark a solemn moment in criminal justice Wednesday with the execution of convicted killer Kimberly McCarthy.

If McCarthy is put to death in Huntsville as planned, she would become the 500th person executed in Texas since the state resumed carrying out the death penalty in 1982. The 52-year-old also would be the first woman executed in the U.S. since 2010.

McCarthy's attorney, Maurie Levin, said she has exhausted all efforts to block the execution, after denials by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.

"If there was something to appeal, I would," said Levin.

Texas has carried out nearly 40 percent of the more than 1,300 executions in U.S. since the Supreme Court allowed capital punishment to resume in 1976. The state's standing stems from its size as the nation's second most populous state as well as its tradition of tough justice for killers.

With increased debate in recent years over wrongful convictions, some states have halted the practice entirely. However, 32 states have the death penalty on the books. Still, it's clear the debate over capital punishment has touched Texas, with lawmakers providing more sentencing options for juries and courts narrowing the cases for which death can be sought.

McCarthy faces execution for the 1997 robbery, beating and fatal stabbing of retired college psychology professor Dorothy Booth. Booth had agreed to give McCarthy a cup of sugar before she was attacked with a butcher knife at her home in Lancaster, about 15 miles south of Dallas. Authorities say McCarthy cut off Booth's finger to remove her wedding ring.

Police also had linked two other slayings to McCarthy, a former nursing home therapist who became addicted to crack cocaine.

In her appeals, McCarthy contended prosecutors improperly excluded black jurors and that her lawyers failed to challenge the moves at trial or in early appeals. McCarthy is black, and Booth was white. All but one of the 12 jurors at McCarthy's trial were white.

In January, McCarthy had been moved to a small holding cell a few steps from the Texas death chamber when a Dallas judge moved her execution to April. That timing then was reset for June when Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins said he wanted to await the outcome of capital punishment-related bills before lawmakers in Austin.

On Tuesday, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals declined to reconsider its denial a day earlier of McCarthy's appeal, saying her claims should have been raised previously.

Levin, a University of Texas law professor, said because the court's ruling focused on a procedural and not a substantive issue, the case cannot be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

"The shameful errors that plague Ms. McCarthy's case ? race bias, ineffective counsel and courts unwilling to exercise meaningful oversight of the system ? reflect problems that are central to the administration of the death penalty as a whole. For this to be the emblem of Texas' 500th execution is something all Texans should be ashamed of," Levin said.

McCarthy declined to speak with reporters as her execution date neared.

Anti-death penalty groups planned to protest outside the Walls Unit in Huntsville, where McCarthy is set to receive a lethal injection Wednesday evening.

"The whole world is looking at Texas," said Gloria Rubac, with the Texas Death Penalty Abolition Movement in Houston.

McCarthy would be the 13th woman nationwide and the fourth in Texas put to death since 1976. In the same period, more than 1,300 men have been executed nationwide, 496 of them in Texas. Virginia is a distant second, nearly 400 executions behind.

Federal statistics show that over the past three decades women account for about 10 percent of convicted murderers. According to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, there were 63 women on death row in the U.S. as of Jan. 1, representing 2 percent of the nation's 3,125 condemned prisoners.

Prosecutors showed that McCarthy stole Booth's Mercedes and drove to Dallas, pawned the wedding ring she had removed from the woman's severed finger for $200 and then went to a crack house to buy cocaine. Evidence also showed she used Booth's credit cards at a liquor store.

Booth's DNA was found on a 10-inch butcher knife recovered from McCarthy's home.

McCarthy blamed the crime on two drug dealers, but there was no evidence either existed.

Blood DNA evidence also tied McCarthy to the December 1988 slayings of 81-year-old Maggie Harding and 85-year-old Jettie Lucas. Harding was stabbed and beaten with a meat tenderizer, while Lucas was beaten with both sides of a claw hammer and stabbed.

McCarthy, who denied any involvement in the attacks, was indicted but not tried for those slayings.

McCarthy is a former wife of Aaron Michaels, founder of the New Black Panther Party, and he testified on her behalf. They had separated before Booth's slaying.


Follow Juan A. Lozano at http://www.twitter.com/juanlozano70.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/texas-woman-set-500th-execution-state-073800079.html

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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Flu shot effective regardless of circulating flu strain, research finds

June 25, 2013 ? New research out of St. Michael's Hospital has found that despite popular belief, the flu shot is effective in preventing the flu, even if the virus going around does not match the vaccine.

"It's quite common for people to say they are not going to get the flu shot this year because they've heard it does not match the strain of flu going around," said Dr. Andrea Tricco, the lead author of the paper and a scientist at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael's Hospital. "However, we've found that individuals will be protected regardless of whether the flu strain is a match or not."

The review of the literature analyzed more than 40 years of data, from 1971 to 2011, and included 47 influenza seasons and almost 95,000 healthy people.

Dr. Tricco and colleagues were particularly interested in flu seasons when the flu vaccines were not matched well to circulating strains. They wanted to understand whether the flu vaccines would still be effective when the strains were not a match.

Vaccines work by giving the body an inactive, or non-infective, form of the flu virus so that the body can produce antibodies. When an individual comes into contact with the virus in the future, the body can use the natural antibodies it has created to fight it off.

The study looked at the two most popular vaccine formulations in Canada -- Trivalent inactive vaccine for adults and live-attenuated influenza vaccine for children. They found that both vaccines provided significant protection against matched (ranging from 65 per cent to 83 per cent effectiveness) and mismatched (ranging from 52 per cent to 54 per cent effectiveness) flu strains.

The paper was published online in the journal BMC Medicine today.

"Looking at matches and mismatches can be a difficult process because it's not a yes or no variable," Dr. Tricco said. "Often we're looking at the degree of match between a flu strain and what's included in a vaccine because strains drift from year to year."

Dr. Tricco said that the study's results are mainly applicable to the seasonal flu in otherwise healthy children and adults.

The study was funded by GlaxoSmithKline.

Source: http://feeds.sciencedaily.com/~r/sciencedaily/top_news/~3/hgD7CR0J29Q/130625162235.htm

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HSBC considers quitting Iraq by selling Dar Es Salaam bank stake

DUBAI (Reuters) - HSBC Holdings said on Tuesday it is considering selling its majority stake in Dar Es Salaam Investment Bank , which has made it the main international lender in Iraq.

There has been speculation in the Iraqi banking market about the 70.1 percent holding for some time and Simon Cooper, HSBC's chief executive for the Middle East and North Africa, told reporters in April its presence in Iraq was under review.

"Following a strategic review, it was decided to explore options for the disposal of HSBC's shareholding in DES (Dar Es Salaam)" the lender said in a regulatory filing in London, adding it would not participate in a proposed capital increase for DES.

As part of a three-year global restructuring, HSBC has cut retail banking business in some Middle Eastern nations and merged its operations in Oman with a local bank. It has also scaled back its Islamic banking operations.

Selling its DES stake could be complicated by the domination of Iraq's banking sector by two state-owned lenders - Rafidain and Rashid - with the rest divided among a large number of small players.

Iraq's security and political problems have put many global lenders off operating in the country, despite the agreed potential of its emerging banking system.

However, Standard Chartered has said it hopes to open branches in the country this year and Citigroup Inc said on Monday it would open a representative office in Baghdad.

Some Middle Eastern lenders have operations in Iraq, including Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank and Qatar National Bank . Lebanon's Bank Audi said it would launch in Iraq in 2013.

DES, which focuses on corporate and consumer banking and has 14 branches in Iraq, has had a partnership with HSBC since October 2005.

Speculation that HSBC might pull out of Iraq had been fed by the absence of its name on a $1.35 billion initial share sale of telecom firm Asiacell in January, a deal in which it had been due to be a bookrunner.

(Reporting by Brenton Cordeiro in Bangalore; Writing by David French in Dubai; Editing by Ruth Pitchford)

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/hsbc-considers-quitting-iraq-selling-dar-es-salaam-104812809.html

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Taliban attack presidential palace in Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) ? The Taliban say they have hit one of the most secure areas of the Afghan capital with a suicide attack, as a series of explosion rocked the gate leading into the presidential palace.

Smoke rose from the eastern gate of the palace early Tuesday after more than a half dozen explosions and at least 45 minutes of on-and-off small arms fire.

The Taliban sent a quick text-message statement saying "we brought death to the enemy."

The palace is in a large fortified area of downtown Kabul that also includes the U.S. Embassy and the headquarters for the NATO-led coalition forces.

Reporters gathering for an event with President Hamid Karzai counted at least seven or eight explosions starting about 6:30 a.m.

Police had no immediate comment.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/taliban-attack-presidential-palace-afghanistan-030026459.html

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